Category Archives: ridiculousness

Dream it all up again

Ridiculosity is moving.

I’ll be shutting down the operations for the next week or so while I revamp and relocate this site to greener pastures.  I’ve always had a specific vision in my head for what I wanted the blog to look like, and as much as I love WordPress, the free-hosted WordPress.com just wasn’t powerful enough for me.  Luckily, I found a killer deal on some hosting and I’m moving up to WordPress.org.  What’s great is it allows me to use more sleek and professional looking themes, and the huge amount of plug-in customization means I can finally implement many of the things I want to do.

The site will end up being broken into small pieces, hopefully with the blog itself separated from the photo galleries, but all accessible through a sidebar portal that looks very sexy, if I don’t say so myself.  I’m still working on it, but I expect to have it up and running by Sunday…not finished, mind you, because I’m a perfectionist and it’s going to take weeks for me to get it exactly how I want it.

There will also be a brand new address, but the current web address will work.  The old “pure ridiculousness” address will be out of commission in a few weeks though.

I’m really interested in social networking integration.  Look for a new Twitter feed and a Facebook page all wrapped nicely into the Ridiculosity shell.  It’s going to be quite the experience.

See you in a week.


Monday Morning Madness

In lieu of my weekly weigh-in (which, you may recall, is being skipped this week as a result of my massive gluttony over the weekend), I think I’ll just ramble about stuff.  You might want to leave before it gets ugly.

My birthday was pretty awesome.  Sarah threw me a surprise party (and bought me some Jameson).  My parents gave me a Nook, which is one of the coolest things since the iPod.  I started reading Stephen King’s “Under the Dome.”  They also gave me some beer, which was a nice added bonus (Philadelphia Brewing Walt Wit and Williamsburg Alewerks Coffeehouse Stout).  Then there were some much-needed clothes and some much appreciated birthday-spending-fodder.  And some Simpsons DVDs.

The Super Bowl Commercials were pretty enjoyable overall.  I don’t know who won the Super Bowl, even though I was at a party where the game was on.  We ended up having to leave a little early though as the little one crashed and couldn’t hang anymore.  I’m still a little haunted by the Doritos commercial with the guy licking the other guy’s fingers.  Transformers 3 made me drool.

On a business note, there may be some changes coming around here in the form of either A) new, small features and tweaks, B) a brand new website or C) some combination of the two.  I’m currently readying Facebook integration.  The site seems to have modestly “taken off” recently and I want to see where I can take it.  If you have suggestions of what you’d like to see here, drop me a note, or a smoke signal or some sort of telepathic message.  Thanks.

Ok, you’ve been punished enough.

 


The end of mainstream blues?

The White Stripes broke up yesterday.

You’re forgiven if that doesn’t exactly come as a surprise, considering that Jack White’s name hasn’t been used in conjunction with ex-wife Meg in at least a couple of years.  Between producing records and playing in about 37 other bands, collaborating with Alicia Keys and appearing in guitar documentaries (watch It Might Get Loud, it’s superb), Jack White has been everything but The White Stripes.  And for the most part, that was ok.  The Raconteurs and The Dead Weather are both fantastic blues-infused bands, but with the exception of “Level” by the Raconteurs, these bands haven’t exactly reached the heights that The White Stripes conquered in the early 2000s.  White Blood Cells and Elephant were mammoth albums that brought garage rock and blues to the masses.  Not since the early days of the Stones has blues music been at the forefront of rock.

It’s comforting to think about the recent commercial successes of The Black Keys, possibly The White Family’s closest musical brethren.  Can they carry the blues flag?  One could argue that without The White Stripes, we wouldn’t be hearing Black Keys songs on the radio or television commercials.  They were, and still are, pioneers and architects of the dirty, low-fi garage blues duos that play direct homage to classic Chicago blues, and they will be missed.

For sure, their departure leaves a huge, regrettable hole in the blues’ modern identity that will be tough to fill.

For posterity, here they are covering Son House’s “Death Letter.”  It’s my favorite modern re-interpretation of a blues song.


Weigh-In: Week Four

Can I get a drum roll with some confetti cannons and other such celebratory awesomeness?  I hit 200 pounds this week, which marks the 10 pound mark of my weight loss program.  It’s also a 15 pound loss since the summer.  I never did come up with any sort of reward for the 1/3 benchmark, but that’s ok.  I’m on a roll right now, which is nice, because it helps me stay on track when I see donuts sitting in the staff room and that Boston Creme just keeps haunting me.

Even though I’ve lost 3 pounds in each of the past two weeks, I’m still setting my sights at a 2-pound loss for next week, which makes my next target 198.  It would mark my first time getting under 200 pounds in like, a really long time.

Programmer’s Note:  Due to the multiple festivities of the coming weekend, I will A) not be on any degree of a diet program and B) not checking in next week.  Let’s call it a birthday gift to myself.  So tune in two weeks from today for the Week 6 weigh-in.


Awesome Beer & Delicious Photography

I do love it so when two things I really enjoy are brought together into one combined smorgasbord of greatness.  In this case, it’s photography and beer, specifically, the places in which the delicious, delicious beer is made.  Photos of old, decrepit, abandoned breweries from multiple artists are featured in this article, which visits the history of various famous breweries and documents their ultimate fate.  The photographs are fantastic.  I’m sure the beer was sublime…

Seven Abandoned Breweries “Open” for Exploration


Let’s Blog about Life

Some thoughts on a snowy Thursday…

The past week+, I have had almost zero desire to take photos.  The things I’ve been shooting have uninspired, at best.  On the flip side, I’ve been bonding with my guitars and mandolin…the mandolin has been particularly fun.  I’ve also spent some time writing in the past few days, which has felt refreshing and only a little bit forced.  I think the story I’m working on will be ok, but I’m rusty so it won’t exactly be THE GREATEST THING EVER.  I’m still going to force unsuspecting visitors to read it.

I’m listening to Florence + The Machine right now.  I’m going to see them open for U2 (the first of 3 U2 shows in what I am dubbing THE SUMMER OF U2!  Details to follow) at FedEx Field in Baltimore this summer, so that’s exciting.  I’ve also been digging the new Decemberists album.

I have a headache.

Diet Coke Lime is really good.  What happened to Diet Coke Lemon?  And on a related note, does anyone remember Crystal Pepsi?  Or Pepsi Kona?  I tried Coke Blak once and that was disgusting.

I think I’m going to dig out my old harmonicas soon and reacquaint myself with them. Maybe I’ll get one of those harmonica holders and play Bob Dylan songs.  I do a decent enough Dylan impression, so it could work.  Next year’s Halloween costume?  Possibly…possibly.

I’ve switched from Florence + The Machine to The Decemberists.

I’m very pleased with my weight loss program, and I think, if things go like they have been, I’m going to be VERY happy come Monday morning.  Did I just jinx myself?  No.  Case in point:  Roy Halladay threw a perfect game and a playoff no-hitter, and each time I did the unthinkable and, you know, publicly acknowledged it.  Funny thing is, he still threw a perfect game and a no hitter.  I learned that from Harry Kalas, who was never afraid to tell it like it was, even with 2 outs in the ninth inning.

Speaking of which…baseball can’t come soon enough.  I’m calling it now:  two parades; one for the Stanley Cup, one for the World Series.  Again, I don’t believe in jinxing.  Fate, do your worst.

My birthday is in 8 days.  Buy me stuff.

I’m going to go make hamburgers and watch 30 Rock.  You wish you were as awesome as me.


The Art of Writing…and art, too.

Back when I was in college, whenever I couldn’t sleep, or simply didn’t want to sleep, I would stay up and write stories.  Sometimes, I would draw weird little pictures with sharpie markers and white-out, which were largely influenced by the doodles found in Ani DiFranco’s album “Knuckledown.”  Once I got out of college and started, you know, real life, the writing and drawing activities slowly died out until I completely stopped doing either one of those things.

I still have the stories and drawings, of course, but I had never done anything with them, mainly because I think they’re awful and childish; I’ve learned in the past few years that I am overly critical of things I do, though I’m surprised, frankly, at my willingness to put my photography out there for the world to see.  I did once try to start a blog with my stories a few years ago, but I got a little embarrassed.  Plus, no one read it.  Literally, no one.  It’s not like there are a bazillion people reading this one, but I get a respectable amount of traffic here.

I started this blog in the hopes that one day I might rekindle my desire to write things through the act of writing posts and generally have a creative outlet.  I feel like I should do my best to honor that, so I’ve decided on the following two things:

1.  In the coming weeks or months, I will, slowly but surely, post all those old stories and pictures for the clamoring public (except for the ones I really think are awful).  I’ll do my best to talk about when it was written, what it’s about and how I got to writing it.  Maybe I’ll start tomorrow.

2.  I will write a new story by the end of February and post it here.

I’ve actually got a story idea brewing for the first time in a long time, so I’m pretty excited.  Let’s see how it goes.


Weigh-In: Week Three

203.  These numbers are rounded to the nearest whole numbers, of course, just for the sake of simplicity, but also because it’s really difficult, even on The Google, to find an image for 203.2.  So let’s just say it’s 203.

That’s 3 pounds since last week, which is a fantastic number and a pound past my goal of losing 2 pounds per week.  I’m glad about this for two reasons:  first, obviously, I exceeded my expectations, but secondly my birthday is less than two weeks away and I plan on being a glutton for the entire day, and the next day is the Super Bowl and you can’t really go to a Super Bowl shindig without eating at least a little more than you should.  So this extra little bit should be a good buffer to allow me to fall off the wagon for a day or two and not be too hurt by it.  I expect the Weekly Weigh-In on February 6 to be off, but in the end it’ll be worth it.  It will also make it easier to be extra good this week and next.

This is a total weight loss of approximately 7 pounds in 3 weeks. My clothes, which fit just fine to begin with, feel pretty huge.

Come back next week…


The Devil Won’t Let Me Be – Musical Musings?

I have nothing to say at the moment, so here’s more music…

The Black Keys:  Sinister Kid

The sign of a good band is when they play their songs live and it’s 1000% better than anything they’ve released on CD, or mp3, or whatever media is in vogue at the time.  Nothing sucks more than when you go to see a band whose album you’ve been enjoying only to find they lack the chops to play to a crowd.

I’ve always been a fan of The Black Keys, but it wasn’t until Sarah took me to see them at the Electric Factory two years ago that I really fell in love with them.  They put on such a great show with tremendous energy that I almost prefer to root out live videos on YouTube instead of listening to their albums.  I recently bought their iTunes session live album, and it is just amazing.  I’ve barely played any of their back catalog since I got it, as they just have a swagger that’s impossible to replicate in a studio.  This is one of the bigger reasons for my U2 fanaticism, but I won’t go there or else I’ll bore you for hours.

Hey, how about that, I had something to say after all…


Weigh-In: Week Two

206 (and a tiny bit of change).  Not bad; it’s right around where I was looking to be by this point, so that’s a good thing.  I’m a little surprised considering I spent the weekend at the shore clearly not dieting.  I did make sure I stayed more or less within my maintenance range of calorie intake so that I didn’t feel like a total loser.

But hey, all’s well that ends well.

I don’t feel the need to make any adjustments at the moment, but I do think I need to set some sort of goals and rewards for myself.  My ultimate goal is to have to buy a new wardrobe by April, but I think I need some smaller goals in the middle, maybe at 10 and 20 pounds.  I’ve lost 4 so far, so I have 6 more pounds to go until the first marker…anyone have any suggestions?