June 2007 Archives

wow, wow, wow

The story I wrote was just on NBC's Today Show. They talked about the apology and showed Wikinews, then the story, and scrolled the headline. A headline I wrote. For a story I wrote (and has since had minor tweaks courtesy the Wikinews community).

I already saw it on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News. And it's everywheres on the intarwebs.

So freakin' cool.

Chris Benoit Wikipedia mystery solved! By me!

I'm not one to toot my own horn, but...

This story on Chris Benoit, his wife's death, and the mysterious Wikipedia entry was written by yours truly.

The mystery is solved. I (with the help of #wikinews) solved it. Spread the news! And if any news agency steals our story without attributing it to Wikinews, they need to die.

Chris Benoit, Wikipedia, and sleuthing

Wow, it only took 90 minutes for this entire post to become irrelevant.

Read the confession from the coincidental death-predictor here.

Note the IP works out to... Stamford. Good job, Joe, you got another confession!

That night I found out that what I posted, ended up actually happening, a 1 in 10,000 chance of happening, or so I thought. I was beyond wrong for posting wrongful information, and I am sorry to everyone for this. I just want everyone to know it was stupid of me, and I will never do anything like this again. I just posted something that was at that time a piece of wrong unsourced information that is typical on wikipedia, as it is done all the time.

Tough luck, buster... or should I say, "Marc."

The media is once again letting you down in covering the Chris Benoit story.

I'm going to drop my usual narrative writing methods to lay out the facts of the past 24 hours or so for you.

1. Wikipedia administrators noticed an anomaly in the Chris Benoit article. Specifically, an anonymous user made the following edit (text from Wikinews):

On a paragraph about an earlier fight: "However, Chris Benoit was replaced… due to personal issues,…", the anonymous editor added " stemming from the death of his wife Nancy." The edit was reversed just under one hour later with the comment: "Need a reliable source. Saying that his wife died is a pretty big statement, you need to back it up with something."

This edit was made twelve hours before police found out about the deaths.

On Wednesday night, Wikinews starts investigating the story.

2. Fox News picks up the story from Wikinews and puts it on their own website as an "Exclusive." They report it on Fox News Channel as a "Fox News Exclusive" and subsequent articles on the discovery have cited Fox News. This is incorrect. Wikinews broke the story and deserves all citation hereforth.

3. The IP of the user who made the edit sources back to a Cablevision cable modem in Stamford, CT -- where the headquarters of the WWE is located.

4. A user at that IP has made a number of edits on Wikipedia, nearly all of them to wrestling-related articles and nearly all of them vandalism.

5. The one "constructive" edit was to the article on Chavo Guerrero, Jr., in which the user reverted a previous vandalism edit.

6. Chavo Guerrero, Jr. has been cited as one of the last people to receive communication from Benoit before he killed himself. The message was cryptic, essentially explaining how to get into the house to discover the bodies.

7. Chavo Guerrero's first call upon finding the dead body of his uncle Eddie Guerrero was to Chris Benoit.

8. One of the non-wrestling-related edits made by the anonymous user was to the page of Naugatuck, CT -- a city roughly an hour from Stamford.

9. The edit replaced the name of the Naugatuck Mayor and Deputy-Mayor with the names Marc Dagz and Visar Tasimi.

10. Marc Dagz and Visar Tasimi are students at the University of Connecticut and are on each others' friends lists on Facebook. Visar has a Myspace too.

11. It stands to reason, thus, that:

a) Someone with previous knowledge of Nancy Benoit's death is a friend of (or is) Dagz or Tasimi and edited the Chris Benoit Wikipedia entry.

b) Someone fitting that qualification chose to vandalize the Benoit entry at the very moment he was likely killing himself/his child.

I find the coincidences too great. I've already emailed Marc and Visar, and hopefully one or both will get back to me. Certainly the police can trace the IP back to the user who made the edit, and that news will come out within a few days. This is where we are with the investigation.

Jimbo Wales dropped into #wikinews on Freenode this afternoon to discuss his appearance on Greta Van Susteren's show later in the evening, then came back on afterward. He's a pretty cool guy, and even edited the entry for Drew Curtis' new Fark book after I mentioned he should read it. He also lives down the road, so he has that going for him. Oh, and being a multi-millionaire and all.

Artifact #A12

Thanks to Uni Watch!

One of my favorite blogs is Paul Lukas' Uni Watch (he has columns on ESPN too) and today he linked to my photo gallery of Saturday night's "Turn Back The Clock" baseball game... he even used one of my photos of Aki on the front page! Very cool! Thanks, Paul!

Read the thread here.

No thanks at all to the spammers who have tried to take over this blog in the last few days and necessitated me turning off comments. This will all be fixed soon when I get britta.entertainmentweakly.com up and running.

Elijah Dukes is My Daddy

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Elijah Dukes is my daddy. It's true. My momma's real white. Like, albino.

"Elijah Dukes is My Daddy Blues" (2:30, blues, intoxication)

mp3 version (4.3 megs)
AAC/m4a version (2.7 megs)

It's in 12/8 time! 'Cause that's how many kids he has! By how many women! I'm so clever!

BTW, this is the first song I've recorded with my new guitar, who doesn't have a name yet, but it might just be Tiffany. Or Debbie. Or Belinda Carlyle.

Devil Rays win!

Went to the Devil Rays/Dodgers game tonight. It was throwback night, featuring the 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers and 1955 St. Petersburg Saints. Were those two teams to actually play each other, the score would be something along the lines of 1955 to zero.

As it turned out, the D-Rays won, 4-3, and it was a fantastic game. Plus I got the nifty Don Zimmer double-bobblehead. And Dick Vitale was there.

See the full photo gallery, courtesy me!

Artifact #A11

Clipping from the Athens News, April 1999.

Movie review: SiCKO

Michael Moore's new documentary SiCKO opens next Friday, and as with all Moore features, it raises more questions than it answers. Questions like:

* Why are all the letters but "i" capitalized? (Brad has an idea.)
* Why are Americans living in France so happy? They don't have college football there.
* Why are French women so very very sexy?
* Why do we have $70 billion to blow up Iraq but nothing for health care?
* Why was Michael Moore allowed to make a film about health care when he is far from the pinnacle of health? Why not Marky Mark Wahlberg, who is a veritable Adonis (review on his recent Shooter coming soon)?

Note to self: do not Google Image
Search for "sicko"
...among others. Certainly, SiCKO is Moore's most universally-appealing topic so far in his work; Roger & Me spoke mainly to people who live in the dirty hellhole of Flint, and Bowling for Columbine and Fahrenheit 9/11 were overtly political, and completely true. That's not to say that SiCKO doesn't lay into politicians; Bush, Bush Sr., Hillary, and others all get their comeuppances. Yet Moore's latest film is inherently different insofar as it's not condescending, it's not satirical, and it's not antagonistic. That makes it sound like it's also boring. If anything, it's rather pleasant.

The New York Times review (use bugmenot) says that of Moore's films, it is the "funniest and the most tightly edited."

Most tightly edited, yes -- the two hours pass by as if they were thirty minutes. Funny? I'm not sure about that. Yes, there are a few belly laughs -- I nearly puked up my popcorn when the narrative turned to Fidel Castro's Cuba, though that might have been because I soaked each kernel in "butter flavored topping," which, if you haven't noticed yet, is actually fresh Mobil 1 Synthetic 5w50.

Instead, I cried. In Bowling for Columbine, I cried from laugher. In Fahrenheit 9/11, I cried because I was scared. In SiCKO, I cried because I was moved. You know, moved. Like I was in Miracle or Epic Movie or Pretty Cool Too. I won't ruin these moments for you. I want you to see the movie.

Will anything change as a result of Moore's rhetoric? Probably not. America is run by the corporations that elect our politicans and make up our 401(k) accounts. That won't change until the electorate changes and decides to start holding politicans to a test of reason and logic -- and that won't happen until we start educating children in a manner that encourages these principles.

I hope Moore's next movie is about how utterly embarassing education is in the United States. SiCKO discusses how far behind the rest of the developed world we are in medicine -- but the gap is even worse when it comes to education. You hearing me, fatty?

Artifact #A10

3 April 1998, back when having a story move on the AP Wire was a big deal.

That's not my writing, BTW. They rewrote my story. And they did it suckily.

Artifact #A9

Bar napkin, Riviera Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, 14 June 2007.

Artifact #A8

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My first band, New Pattern Shirt. Television celebrity Mark Sickmiller on the left, myself on the right as vocalist and bass player.

Photo taken Fall 1996 and apparently with a Kodak Brownie.

Artifact #A7

Mandalay Entertainment makes movies.

Movies like Wild Things and Donnie Brasco.

They run Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino, home to the best pool in Las Vegas. Its "best pool in Vegas" designation is mainly due to the fact that it is a topless pool. All pools are topless for me.

They also own the Las Vegas 51's, named for the Groom Lake installation 80 miles north of Las Vegas, also known as Area 51 (not Area 51-A) and where the military keeps all the aliens they collect from Strip swimming pools.

Having an alien as a mascot is freaking great, and baseball is best enjoyed outside and at 110 degrees F.

seems i've often heard that kind of talk before

LAS
11:27:12 PM
PDT

hookers
march back to humble abodes and secretarial jobs
in new york, philly or the ATL
you can pick them out a mile away
no luggage, just shopping bags
from caesar's
or bellagio
$2,000 a trick earns you lots of bras

intercom
mistakenly refers to thief as
"the person who found the black bag in the ladies' restroom"
please dial zero at a courtesy telephone
too late, they are halfway over the canyon

dry air
a throat needs to be quenched
but even snapple tea
is chock full of HFCS
and will only dessicate you

people mover
is often called a "moving walkway"
not a moving standway
move your ass

albert hammond
had one single hit song about rain in southern california
but he wasn't even american
i don't wanna die in an air disaster
his son
is in the strokes
it was just one moment in time
(he wrote that too.)

las.jpg

Sun 11:36:52 PM PDT (0:45)

Artifact #A6


Bar portrait, L.A. Hangout, 12 June 2007.

las vegas is pummeling me with its fists

bw.jpg

bwa.jpg

Artifact #A5


Bar portrait, L.A. Hangout, 12 June 2007.

Artifact #A4


Bar portrait, L.A. Hangout, 12 June 2007.

Fort Lauderdale sucks

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I have been here at the Fort Lauderdale airport for four hours. I have three more hours before I get to leave. That may seem odd to you, and it is, but it is the very nature of travel in today's day and age. To get to Las Vegas for this weekend's canceled wedding, I had the option of either flying straight from Tampa for $700, or from Tampa to FLL to Las Vegas for $350. For what it's worth, the fact that I have such a long layover and a change in airlines has led me to be informed there is a "strong chance" my luggage will not be accompanying me to Las Vegas. Terrific.

Furthermore, FLL is about the worst airport in the history of man. The air conditioning is shut off, thus it is sweltering in here. I want to kill myself or my fellow traveler purely as a function of the heat. The wireless internet is spotty and doesn't work from inside the only bar in the terminal, thus I have to keep my stuff outside the bar and then go in when I need a drink, which is often. There are no restaurants in the terminal, only a Nathan's Hot Dog stand. The bar doesn't serve food.

I have been here for hours, and thus I've been able to observe my fellow travelers in their shared disgust at this pathetic joke of an airport. People are openly enraged that you CANNOT GET FOOD (you could leave, and go somewhere else to get food, but then you'd have to go through the 45 minutes of security all over again). In all, I'm absolutely miserable here, and soon I get to get on an airplane for five hours of fun fun travel.

Augh.

FLL.jpg

Artifact #A3


Bar portrait, L.A. Hangout, 12 June 2007.

Artifact #A2

Taken from the door of Gorman's Pub, Peoria, IL, November 2002.

Artifact #A1

Bar napkin portrait quartet, March, 2007

Movie review: Bridge to Terabithia

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For reasons unknown even to me, I watched the recent film Bridge to Terabithia today. Based on the 1977 book by Katherine Paterson, it stars a handful of young actors you'll likely never see again, and Zooey Deschanel who may or may not be hotter than her sister Emily, depending on the circumstances.

Maybe you read the book when you were younger. If you did, and have since forgotten, or if you didn't, which is even more likely, here is a breakdown of the plot. I will spoil the ending for you as a public service to provide you even less incentive to ever watch the film than you may have had already.

There is a boy who is in the fifth grade and like many fifth graders is teased for being poor and kind of a wuss. He gets beaten in a footrace by a girl, further enhancing his wussiness, though to his credit the girl (named Leslie) appears to be at least five years older than him.

She's only sevenTEEEEEEEEEEEEEN!
It actually turns out that she is the same age (or so the filmmakers would have us believe, but trust me, it will not be the first time they throw believability to the wind) and they become friends, mainly due to their being more attractive than anyone else in the school, one which is inhabited by all number of miscreants and inbred fools. The setting of the film is not specified, but from the appearance of its characters, it takes place somewhere in West Virginia, or perhaps west Virginia.

(Okay, fine. It's in Virginia. You don't need to know that, but if you read the book, you already know that.)

So the bullies in this redneck haven have a kink for watersports, as evidenced by the queen bee getting her rocks off by watching the little kids pee their pants. Meanwhile, our erstwhile hero is living the hard knocks of having parents who haven't discovered contraception or meaningful employment.

To combat these issues, the two kids get high on myriad drugs (perhaps Hillbilly Heroin, more likely LSD) and venture into the forest behind their houses, where they hallucinate about all sorts of fanciful creatures. More often than not, they end up "fighting" their illusory demons before coming down out of their drug-addled trances and returning home for supper.

Bad trip, man. Bad trip.
The girl-woman seems to be the enabler of young Jess, practically quoting Timothy Leary as she encourages him to "close your eyes but keep your mind wide open."

Of course, like any cautionary tale about drug abuse and rejecting God (Leslie openly professes being an atheist) there is tragedy, as the girl trips without her cruising buddy and drowns in a river, one she probably thought was frozen over or filled with plaid elephants. Jess lashes out, punching a kid in the face, and his teacher tells him to avoid the demons of the cursed, as little girls who go to Hell always come back to haunt the living.

The story ends with Jess introducing his baby sister to the world of drugs, crowning her "Princess of Terabithia" and building a bridge (of dubious quality, given both his lack of engineering prowress and the quality school systems found in the Appalachians) across the stream where his hippie friend lost her life.

Zooey Deschanel, whom I haven't mentioned again in this review due to her role being entirely meaningless, save for introducing the children to yet another drug-influenced artist (Steve Earle), is marginally hot in her role as a young, unmarried music teacher. We are led to believe she seduces young Jess, but as this is a PG-rated film that part is left to our imagination. Either way, the film could have done without her, and I'm pretty sure she's only here to give fathers something to look forward to during the children's escapades in the forest.

In all, you will be better served to simply take drugs yourself and go walking in the woods, as at least that way you have no one to blame but yourself for the bad trip that will inevitably result. Drugs are bad, mmkay?

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    This page is an archive of entries from June 2007 listed from newest to oldest.

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