Tag Archives: blogging

My friends do cool things

Father Scott

One of the nice things about being the age I am in 2008 is the way I can follow what my friends are up to without having to actually, you know, talk to them. (A close second: not receiving copious AARP mailings like Pax.)

The whole social networking thing is obvious, but one thing that has pleasantly surprised me is people documenting special experiences via blogs.

My friend Alli is describing her experience on a Fulbright scholarship in Peru. Her blogging has dropped off recently (for which she apologizes in every post), but she has some interesting observations. In her most recent post she covered a few weeks’ worth of activity. Included in this was celebrating Halloween in Peru, and watching the US election of Barack Obama unfold:

We also celebrated the wonderful victory of Barack Obama and the democrats in general this past Nov. 4th. we had a party at Jan-Jacques house in san blas, and he cooked Indonesian Gadou-gadou, apple pie, and pizzas for the occasion. i brought two cakes that were supposed to say “Obama” on them… but due to a slight misunderstanding regarding the similar pronunciation of the English B and the Spanish V, I brought my two “Ovama” cakes to the party. hilarious, and delicious.

My friend and former editor Niraj has recently traveled to India with his family, after finishing up work in San Francisco. Now, I know what you’re thinking: ‘Didn’t they have some sort of terrorist thing in India recently? Gee, I hope that kid wasn’t affected.’ That’s very sweet of you to care, actually. Oh, and he’s fine, though he was close:

My parents and I left the Mumbai train station the day before yesterday, about eight hours before the shooting there began. We’re all fine, just sad and disappointed. […] I landed in Mumbai on Tuesday The flight was broken into two approximately nine-hour legs (San Francisco to London and London to Mumbai) with a seven-hour wait in London. It sucked, of course, but I did meet a cool Portuguese couple who spent four months in Mumbai in 2006 and were on their way back. In the interim two years they rented out two houses, one of which they built. (Random aside: the guys who run the Internet cafe where I’m writing this are blasting “Lean Back.”)

I’m excited to follow each of their journeys and Niraj in particular is a great writer (Alli probably is too, having hailed from the finest institution in the land).

But, hey, I’m doing cool stuff too. Like yesterday, I owned my brother, who’s five years younger, in basketball. We played on 8 ft. hoops. And we were both winded with the score at 4-2. And then I celebrated doing the “Lean Back”.

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Andre Ethier eats it

Pax Arcana

It appears as though Manny Ramirez’s strident intellectual curiosity and taste for the finer things have rubbed off on his teammate Andre Ethier.

The third-year outfielder was profiled in the Wall Street Journal yesterday, but not for his playing ability or fiscal acumen. Instead, it turns out Ethier is quite the foodie:

Mr. Ethier knows where to find the best throat-meat tacos in Los Angeles, the juiciest Salvadoran papusas and the city’s tastiest Romanian chicken stew. He waxes poetic about the pinto beans in his native Arizona, where they’re often pureed with cream and lard. “Here they want you to taste the bean, not the lard, which is… different.”

Ethier, who latched on to food writing as a distraction from the pressures of being a young and handsome millionaire, even has a food blog of his own — called Dining with Dre:

Mr. Ethier says he modeled his blog on his favorite foodie journal, “Feasting in Phoenix.” Each entry is structured chronologically as if the experience occurred in a single night, though it’s usually an amalgam of several visits. “I take a little creative liberty,” he says.

After taking pictures of each dish and composing the text on his iPhone over several weeks, he sends the finished piece to the Dodgers’ vice president of communications Josh Rawitch, who does nothing more than clean up typos and check his grammar and punctuation. Maggie Ethier says she was surprised to learn that her husband — who earned a C in creative writing in college — had such a clever way with words.

There are more reviews in the works: one of an Ethiopian dive, the other of a Korean barbecue joint. Mr. Ethier says he’s planning to write a culinary guide to Phoenix for Dodgers fans, now that the team is moving its spring-training operations there.

Hmmmmm. Interesting. Let’s get a sample of what he writes about over there:

I have developed a liking for Japanese food since I have had many a great dining experience with Takashi Saito and his native cuisine. When one might think of Japanese food, everyone always comes up with sushi. I know I did until I went to a few authentic Japanese places with Takashi and got the chance to experience the true Japanese food.

I was introduced to Shabu Hachi by Takashi a  few weeks ago. It sits on Olympic in Santa Monica in one of those oh-so-typical LA corner strip malls. From the outside, you have two Japanese restaurants to choose from – one being the typical sushi place and Shabu Hachi, a place offering up some of the best shabu shabu I have had and I think Takashi would agree.

I think when I speak for all food-interested bloggers when I say the following:

Fuck you, Andre Ethier. You fucking fuckface.

I’m sure you think it’s awesome to eat rosemary-speared rounds of foie gras off of naked supermodels. And I bet there are all kinds of awesome places to find fun shit to eat when you’ve got fucking hundred dollar bills spilling out of your perfect-fitting designer fucking jeans.

Well listen close, dipshit, because I don’t want to have to yell — I don’t get to OPS .846 in the majors, so you don’t get to write frivolous bullshit on the Internet. This is my world, dickhole, a haven for guys whose dreams of swatting at major league fastballs have already been crushed. Blogging about stupid crap is our refuge from the pain of our epic failure to have your life, you throbbing hairy ball sack. So take your movie star good looks and get the fuck out.

Oh, and if I see one goddamn post about zombies or vikings, I will not hesitate to rally some pipe-hitting bloggers from Perk is a Beast to fucking firebomb the shit out of your adorable little blog. Get it, fuckface?

Thank you.

The Dugout Gourmet [WSJ]
Dining with Dre [Home]

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Friday Random 10: Facebook v. MySpace Edition

Pax Arcana

I was prodded into joining Facebook late last summer by the swarm of younger co-workers who revere me as something of a God — if my translation of their native language is correct — for my gregarious charm and seersucker pants.

Of course, before Facebook was all the rage, there was MySpace. I never started a MySpace page because I would rather remove my own eyeballs, fill my ocular cavities with butane and stare into the sun until my face burst into flames than look at most MySpace pages.

According to TechCrunch, April 2008 marks the moment when Facebook finally caught up to MySpace, with both sites registering about 115 million users per month. By comparison, Pax Arcana attracts roughly 275 biznillion users according to the phony documents I send to potential advertisers.

What’s interesting to me is that most of Facebook’s most recent growth comes from abroad:

Facebook added 75 million monthly uniques over the last twelve month, but just 13 million of those visitors are located in the U.S. MySpace added 5 million U.S. uniques during that period – at this rate it will take 4+ years for Facebook to catch up to MySpace in the U.S. market.

More than four years? By that time, instead of blogging and Facebooking, we’ll all be glorping and RedRocketing or something. I’m old. I suck.

On to the songs:

Pot Kettle Black — Wilco
Education — Modest Mouse
Prenzlauerberg — Beirut
Don’t Touch That Dial! — Bettie Serveert
Wildcat — Ratatat
D. Feathers — Bettie Serveert
It’s a Fire — Portishead
Sleep Sunshine — The Whigs
Eiffel Tower High — Hüsker Dü
’92 Subaru — Fountains of Wayne

Bonus video:

Wishing Well — Terrence Trent D’Arby

The Rules: The Friday Random 10 is exactly that — random. We open up our iTunes, set the thing on shuffle, and listen to 10 songs. We are not permitted to skip any out of embarrassment or fear of redundancy. Commenters are encouraged to post their own.

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