Tuesday, May 31, 2011

dover down with that

Since 2007, when I almost missed my brother's wedding reception in Las Vegas because I was too busy winning at craps (true story), I don't think I've had a casino experience as splendid as that which I had yesterday at Dover Downs. And not just because I won, which I did, but because compared to my last experience at Charles Town Races and Slots and Table Games and Diabetes, the casino floor at Dover was a refreshing change. For one, I didn't see any oxygen tanks and it wasn't depressing. The table limits were normal ($10 minimums) and the dealers, well one of them, was the best Spanish 21 dealer of all time -- Bill.

Imagine a white-haired octogenarian with a slight build, a face like Clint Eastwood and a penchant for complimenting your smile. That's Bill! And lest I forget, the clincher: Upon recounting how he snagged his younger, Filipino wife, he very romantically recounted, "She raped me on our first date!" Zing?

But here's the thing: Not only did Bill spit strangely hilarious date-rape jokes, he also nurtured and maintained a really great vibe among the entire table. When people were doing well, you'd see high-fives, say all kinds of wOots! and hear several "Suck my bawls!" Of course, the latter only came from my gambling partner of choice, Anti DC Creative Director Terry the Tourette's Turtle, who was betting -- and winning -- $200 per hand. Indeed, suck his bawls.

But here's the more important thing: Even when you lost you still had fun because the atmosphere Bill created was so damn cool. Now that is motherf*cking genius. I hope Dover pays Bill well because that man has the ability to make you lose thousands and still come back for more. He's kind of like the personification of this blog, except instead of money, the only thing lost here that makes you come back for more is brain cells. So, I'll e-see you guys tomorrow then, right? Because this is how I feel about you, creepy rainforest sound effects and all.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

he'll eat anything

I didn't have a rough night last night, but apparently my cat did:

As you can see, this raucous punk is still wearing his club bracelet. He went to the vitaminwater uncapped live/Brightest Young Things temporary party space last night and O.D.'d on corporate visions of urbanity. Sneakers on the wall! Graffiti on the stairs! Lots of art that looked a whole lot like someone asked WWTMD (What Would Takashi Murakami Do)? And of course, fridges upon fridges of all the vitaminwater a cat could ever want. Incidentally, he now probably has diabetes, which makes total sense because diabetes is also super urban! At least in Chennai...

But all jokes aside, for some free sh*t to do in DC at night, the vitaminwater uncapped live events are fine enough, especially if you like artificial flavoring, watching 18-year-olds take "artsy" photographs to put on Facebook and other things you're probably too old for if you're over the age of 25. But for real, my cat is really enjoying eating his entrance bracelet. It's weird that they let in a 3-year-old though. I mean even for something like this, that seems a little young...

In other news that will make you feel young again, click here...

Monday, May 23, 2011

how the post made "hip Moscow" totally un-hip

"I've been hip since 1969, you fool!"
The Washington Post has a way of angering me like nothing else, which reveals two things: 1) I absolutely hate it; and 2) I obviously hate myself, too, as I keep reading it. I don't know, I guess it's my metaphorical form of "cutting." (For more information on that very serious psychological disorder, please to see this very informative and dramatic episode of the incredibly well acted Seventh Heaven.)

And while I usually concentrate my vim, vigor, and vicious vulgar verse (say that three times fast) on the Post's totally inept local and opinion sections (seriously, this is just factually wrong), today it's on their usually inconsequential Style section. Poor thing...

I just can't get over this article, which seeks to "uncover" Moscow's hip side through the kinds of "duh"-inducing observations that anyone under the age of 50 had already made 10 years ago. It's this kind of decade-late corny sh*t that makes DC seem like a city full of unsophisticated suburbanites to the rest of the world.

The problem is, that's exactly the audience that the Post always seems to be going for. (ZOMG, DID THEY EVER FIND THAT GOAT?!?!) But serious question: when was the last time an article in the Post's Style section related to anything going on in the life of a 20- or 30-something living in the actual city (or even in the more denser populated areas of Arlington)? I can't think of anything off the top of my head.

That's sad. A paper with all those resources can't seem to hire a few writers who can do more than state the obvious... But let's return to the article about Moscow for a minute to see what's going on here:
[Moscow's] an amazing, intriguing and rewarding place -- I never tire of urging friends to visit -- and I thought I knew it pretty well, until I discovered another Moscow, nearly hidden somewhere between excess and deficiency, a very cool city with cutting-edge galleries, cafes and clubs, all informed by an urbane sensibility and designed on an intimate scale. Call it hip Moscow.
I will not call it "hip Moscow" because that sounds like just about the most un-hip way to describe anything, especially something that's pretty obvious. Moscow is cool. It is cutting edge. And it has been for quite some time. And what's weird is, ironically, this writer seems to have actually known that. She pointed out the underground art in Soviet Russia in the 1920's, rightfully calling it hip. However, then she makes a pretty obvious mistake in saying that that was the last time Moscow offered anything neither drab nor decadent, and indicated that the years between 1930 and 2011 were nothing but lame.

And with that, any leftover miniscule modicum of credence I may have given this writer to actually tell me something new and relevant to my life and interests instantly vanished. Some of the world's coolest, most hip art sprung out from underneath the most crushing years of Communism in the 1930s and beyond. Take literature for example. If Mikhail Bulgakov, who wrote what I believe is still one of the most cutting-edge novels of all time, The Master and Margarita, in the 1930's, which was banned but published anyway in the underground press in the 1960's, wasn't/isn't f*cking hip, then that word means absolutely nothing.

But I get it. Moscow is also filled with all kinds of tacky, definitional "un-hip" sh*t. Walk down any street and you're sure to see a slew of taller, blonder, skinnier Snooki's waiting in line to purchase more lace, leopard print and lip plumper than most people can imagine. However, unless Moscow's actually become less hip in recent years, I can't believe someone who lives and works there today can have such a hard time seeing past that veneer. When I was living there almost 10 about eight years ago now (although the last time I visited was in 2006), it wasn't hard to find the cool, artsy spots and the cool, artsy kids. (To give you perspective, it was a lot easier to find cutting edge places and people there than cutting edge places and people here.) And anybody who has visited and gone out there, or perhaps hasn't but has just seen one of the many kids in Williamsburg, Brooklyn or even a local party here in DC sponsored by Brightest Young Things (and Vitamin Water) wearing a CCCP shirt, most people realize that Moscow -- and actually, just the very idea of Russia -- has been hip for a while.

But of course, the Post failed to note that because they're writing for people, I guess, who still seriously think of Russia as a place where you're either poor peeling potatoes or rich with so much opulence to haz. Which explains this ridiculous paragraph that came after the above-quoted last one:
Moscow, hip? Hip, after all, speaks to the individual, the personal, the idiosyncratic, and it should involve some fun, a word that doesn't even translate well into Russian. [Anti DC note: This actually makes the Russian version of Rebecca Black's Friday better.] I'd lived here some years ago and returned last fall to report from The Post's Moscow bureau. I thought I knew Moscow 2011, but it took visitors from Washington to help me discover hip Moscow. You know how it is -- you can walk past the Smithsonian every day for years but never know that the Hope Diamond lies sparkling inside until a cousin comes to stay. 
I don't even know where to start with this. Is she calling the Smithsonian hip? The f*cking hope diamond is cutting edge? I suppose if she means that literally... (HAR!) But seriously, it took people from Washington to show you "hip Moscow"? Really? Right there should tell you how the rest of the article goes. It turns out the hippest parts of "hip Moscow" are a well-known photography museum, a design and architecture institute run by oligarchs, a gallery owned by an oligarch's wife, an art museum that's been around for over a century, and a handful of other things that are worth going to, for sure, but probably don't deserve the moniker "hip," nor to be categorized under the headline "Moscow's hidden secret." That's like calling American Apparel and Urban Outfitters secret shopping spots. They're fine, cool even in the non cutting-edge sense, but they're certainly not "hip."

See, using the Post writer's own definition of "hip" -- "individual, the personal, the idiosyncratic" -- just like American Apparel and Urban Outfitters, which are ubiquitous in any mall, I'm not sure this list of major Moscow art spaces that any given travel book would include on their city maps qualifies. The definition of "hip" to me means something must be somewhat underground, cutting edge, not yet mainstream. That's why we make fun of the word "hipsters" now. With the popularization of stores like American Apparel and Urban Outfitters, what people used to think of as cutting edge is now the mainstream. Every kid these days dresses like the lovechild of Roger Rabbit and Tom Cruise in Risky Business. (God, you should see my outfit today, p-b-b-b-blease!)

But look, despite my critique, this article wasn't actually horrible. Beneath the rather misguided conceit and totally wrong headline, there's actually a lot of good, basic information in there. And really, had the article just been titled, "Some worthwhile art spaces to visit in Moscow," I wouldn't be writing this right now. But alas, once again, with the promise of telling me something I already don't know the Post came up short for my demographic...

This is hip Moscow. Sorta. What's really hip wouldn't be on the Web yet.

Friday, May 20, 2011

there's a goat on the loose!

Attention, everyone! Attention! There's a goat on the loose!

And in case you didn't just process that headline and sentence, I'll make like the Washington Post and repeat it a third time on the same Web page: THERE'S A MOTHERF*CKING GOAT ON THE LAM!

Mention No. 1

And mentions 2 and 3. Thanks for the overkill about something that's only mildly interesting the first time...

But seriously, Post, we get it and repeating it multiple times doesn't make it any more interesting. I mean, let's look at the material for a minute: there's a goat running around and it's in Gaithersburg. Don't correct me if I'm wrong, but is this actually newsworthy? I mean, isn't Gaithersburg surrounded by farmland and, ergo, several hundred goats? Surely, this can't be the first time one has jumped the fence...

Yep, OK. I've decided this is definitely not newsworthy. It's nothing against goats, but c'mon, it's not like we're talking about a rabid tiger here. Or a regular tiger. Or even a baby tiger.

 No, not that one, this one!

Now that'd be a story worth repeating. That motherf*cker looks ferocious!

But whatever, I guess the Post has decided to take whatever scraps it can get and call it news. And since I'm insatiably curious and a little too self-masochating, I guess I'll give one of these headlines about this goat a click through. Maybe I've underestimated the importance of this bovid. *click*

Um...seriously? That's it? Not even a story about why or how the goat got loose, or more interestingly, why the goat didn't run in the opposite direction of Gaithersburg (let's face it, that 'burb looks about as human-friendly as it does goat-friendly)? Wow. This is actually less interesting than I figured it'd be and, to think, it took three headlines... Three headlines just to link to a video. But hell, I'm in too deep now to turn back, so I'll watch. This better be f*cking good...

Hmm. I suppose that was mildly amusing, although I think some Benny Hill-style music would've helped it greatly, but I definitely do not think this is worth three headlines. And, in fact, for a publication like the Post, it's hardly worth one...

Here's the thing: I think this aforementioned Gaithersburg goat-chasing was a good get for the Montgomery Village Patch site that captured and originally posted the video. That's what Patch's job is -- to get "hyperlocal" and cover things that only six people care about -- so kudos to them. But the Washington Post? What the f*ck? Sure, I suppose this "story" is a funny afterthought, appropriate and localish enough to link to in a blog post, but in no way is this worthy of three headlines. It's barely worthy of one. I mean, seriously, in a metro-area (and I'm including the suburbs here, since the Post seems to cater to them anyway) that's composed of 8,440,617 people, there must be some other sh*t worth highlighting than a silly goat video...

But whatever. Goats are fainting in Florida. Goats are fainting in Florida. Goats are fainting in Florida.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

slc vs. dc and other letters and acronyms

Salt Lake City is a bizarre amalgamation of all that is right and wrong in the world. Really, it's a city of extremes. From the tops of majestic mountains to the depths of the smelly salt lake, from the awesome bars to the bizarre alcohol policy, Salt Lake City is either f*cking cool or f*cked up. And after just 72 hours in the city, I blame the Church-State, run by the Mormons, for both.

Now, 72 hours might seem like a short amount of time to make a sweeping judgement about a society, but coming from someone who usually makes these types of judgements within seconds, 72 hours is practically a lifetime of study and analysis. And so here's the thing about Salt Lake City, a place where the tallest building is the Church of Latter Day Saints corporate headquarters (not joking): without the hypocritical, rather f*cked up wackness that is the LDS, a group that shuns coffee due to caffeine but eats enough caffeine-saturated chocolate to make a fat kid sick, I don't believe the non-Mormon residents of SLC, who are actually the slight majority within the city limits (although definitely not in the state at large), could've created what I think is the f*cking coolest dive bar scene in America...

Or perhaps I mean it's just better than what exists (or doesn't exist) here in DC. Seriously. Forget about the oppressiveness of the LDS or the fact that in Salt Lake City bartenders must pour their drinks through specially designed mechanical spouts, which meticulously measure out half-shots, meaning to get a full-strength drink you have to order "an extra shot for your friend," the fact that any place in Utah has a better dive bar culture than DC is what's truly f*cked up.

And let's look at that for a second, before returning to the symbiotic relationship between the LDS and the normals in Salt Lake City and how that enhances their bar culture. Why is it that DC's dive bar scene sucks so hard? For one, it's pretty much non-existent. There aren't neighborhood bars here in the same way there are in most other cities. Sure, we have the Red Derby, the Raven and maybe a handful of other dimly lit, well-priced bars with a decent background playlist, but these places are few and far between here. Instead, most every bar in DC relies on some sort of scene or gimmick. Craft beers, fancy cocktails, the bar where all the lawyers go, the lobbyist place, etc. Unlike the dive bar scene in most cities, a bar's clientele in DC doesn't usually have anything to do with the neighborhood in which it exists. Take Stoney's, for example, in Logan Circle. This is probably the closest thing I have to a neighborhood dive bar, although I actually think of it as more of a restaurant. Personal experience shows that I'm as likely to meet someone who lives in Arlington there as I am from around the corner.

Which brings me to the other problem when it comes to dive bar culture in DC -- the people. And it's not that I think everyone is horrendous or someone I wouldn't want to befriend (although it's questionable whether they'd want to befriend me), it's that people don't seem to go out to bars here to do that without some sort of pretense, prereq, or status-seeking motive. Think networking crews, coworker happy hours, kickball teams, etc. It's hard to go out individually here because when you do, it's rare that you'll meet anyone else doing the same. Save for a few exceptions, there are just no "regulars" here to become regulars with. So unless drinking in silence in the corner is your thing...

And incidentally, that was actually becoming my thing until I visited Salt Lake City to see a recently re-located friend last weekend and realized what exactly we're all missing here -- unpretentious, laid-back, genuinely friendly (read: not necessarily sexually motivated), neighborhood-y interactions. And here's where I think the Mormon Church becomes important when it comes to formulating Salt Lake City's awesome dive bar scene: While the LDS will strong-arm you from entering many of their buildings if you enjoy a tipple now and again (or, I guess, even a cup of tea), the bars there welcome anyone with open arms, albeit half-open, carefully measured bottles. In fact, if you're not religious (read: not Mormon), the bars are where you bond. That's where you'll meet your non-LDS neighbors you can later grab coffee with, your future friends you'll not only party with, but be able to have decent conversations with. I suppose this could just mean everyone's a lot friendlier out West, but I can't help but think that this welcoming attitude among Salt Lake City's non-LDSers is extra prevalent because of the domination of the Mormon Church. Hell, I'd probably bond more with my like-minded neighbors if half of the population thought I was seriously going to spend my afterlife trapped alone in a vacuum of outer darkness simply because I don't think Joseph Smith actually talked to God.

Now, I'm not saying everyone who isn't Mormon is going to automatically be besties, although it seemed that way in the three days I was there, nor am I saying anyone who is Mormon isn't worth pursuing a friendship with, although locals tell me it is much harder. What I'm saying is that the very fact that one goes to a bar in Utah means you already have an important life-defining commonality with the person sitting next to you at the counter. In a way, I suppose there's no metaphorical ice to break, which means the moment you step into any given dive bar in Salt Lake City, chances are you'll see a very different situation than you'd see in DC. That is, you'll actually have fun.

And so where does this leave DC? Do we need an overly conservative and religious "other" to come to power in order for me to find a few people withing spitting distance to play Settlers of Catan with to make it easier for us to bond with our neighbors? Are the douches not enough anymore? Do we have to do something more drastic, like recruit an über-douche leader? If so, I think we should write in Glenn Beck's name in the next mayoral election. I really don't want to have to do that, but right now it seems DC is leaving me very little choice. I mean, damn. I have the expansion pack for Settlers of Catan and I want to f*cking use it!

Unfortunately for that plan, though, Prophet Beck is already all tied up in building his compound in the Middle East (sorry, guys...), so it looks like we'll have to think of a plan B. For now, I guess, I'll just embark on an obnoxious crusade of my own. I vow to make a goddamn friend randomly in a Logan Circle bar. I'm sure I'll probably creep a whole crapload of people out with my non-sexual come-ons, but I imagine for me, that'll just be part of the fun. And really, think of the alternative. I'm sure most people would rather have me interrupting their networking happy hours with offers to play nerd games than deal with Mayor Beck and his offers to do amateur porn.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

at least buy us dinner first...

As it turns out, DC was robbed of the dishonor of being named one of the Top 10 worst states for women. I suspect that's because we're not a state. D'oh! Of course, of all the things to be good at, being hostile toward women is definitely not the most desirable. But still, I'm pretty pissed about this exclusion because DC women -- specifically the least wealthy and of reproductive age -- are getting the shaft from Congress, who due to our lack of statehood oversee DC law. This is extra screwy because we here in DC don't even know where that shaft's been since we don't have representation in the body that's ultimately in charge of our local code! And, really, the fact that most of the nation seems OK with this (as loosely and unscientifically, although schmientifically, evidenced by DC's exclusion from the aforementioned list) is infuriating because, unlike Mississippi's local officials (the worst state on the list, by the way) who make Mississippi's local policy, those faraway assholes are also making ours. So, when they band together and proceed to penetrate us with their God-knows-where-its-been shaft, we have no choice but to take it. It's Congressional date rape, I say, and afterwards we're left without the power to even use our own city taxes to take care of our own city's sexual health.* And you'll see I mean that literally if you click on those links

And I'm sorry that I'm using such a crass metaphor (please direct all complaints to The Anti DC's creative director, Terry the Tourette's Turtle), but I'm trying to get a point across here. We're treated like convicted felons even though we're the ones getting our rights trampled on. And what's our crime? As far as I can tell, for most of us it's simply choosing to live within a reasonable distance to our employers. Stupid.

But actually, many convicted felons have it better, as once they've served their time in certain states, they can vote again. So, yeah, someone who holds up your grandma with a gun in New Hampshire ("Live Free or Die!"), will sooner get to have a representative in the government -- and, ergo, in DC's local policy -- than the hundreds of thousands of non-grandma threatening masses here in DC who want nothing more than your grandma to be safe -- and looked after when it comes to her female parts should she live in the District.

But lest the vision of octogenarian lady parts start to formulate in your mind, turn your attention real quick to this:

As per usual, The Daily What slays me with its ability to wrangle the most ridiculous sh*t on the Internet so I can easily find it and repost. That's right I just went Tumblr on all y'all's asses. But it was for a good cause -- to get octogenarian lady parts out of your mind. Remember? Oh sh*t.

Well, then let's try this again. Here's a lovely 15-minute cooking show featuring a recipe for pad thai.

*And just to clarify, I'm not "pro-abortion," I'm pro-choice. And while I hope people use abortion as a last resort (the first is hopefully avoiding pregnancy either via abstinence or reliable birth control), the ability to get one safely in a clinic opposed to dangerously in a back alley should always be an option in a free country, no matter what income range into which a woman falls.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

important life lessons

Have you ever hung your head like a shamed elephant and walked down a DC street? While it's not the most comfortable walking position, it may in fact be a life-saving one, lest, of course, you actually want to step on some pretty deadly objects. In that case, you should be even more ashamed, elephant, because that's gross. I won't go into some of the objects I found on DC's streets, nor will I say why I was so concerned right now, because that's what I do during this never-awaited next episode of The Anti DC. Please, enjoy at my expense!

Friday, May 6, 2011

oh, holy irony

T minus 15, y'all. T minus 15. And if you don't know what I'm talking about then you're missing out on a hilarious story and also, you're going to hell. See, the world is coming to an end everybody! There's proof, says Harold Camping. He knows because he's the 89-year-old Christian fundamentalist radio host with a T-89 who calculated the exact date of the Rapture! Says the Washington Post:
Camping, an engineer by training, says he came up with the very precise date of May 21 through a mathematical calculation that would probably crash Google's computers. It involves, among other things, the dates of floods, the signals of numbers in the Bible, multiplication, addition and subtraction thereof.
Yet, while that reporter, Michael S. Rosenwald, thinks these calculations are hard to understand because they're complicated enough to crash one of the most sophisticated computer networks in the world, I think it's probably a safer guess to assume no one can understands them because they most likely look like the scribbles of Always Sunny in Philadelphia's resident paint huffer, Charlie Kelly.

But seriously. People have left their jobs based on the ranting of this bat-sh*t octogenarian. And not just people with job descriptions like "conspiracy theorist," "village idiot," or "Tea Party organizer." No, these are people who might be your coworkers. The Post talked to one who worked in an insurance office in Maryland, and another at the Department of Homeland Security. Yes, apparently while yours truly was once denied a government security clearance (albeit from another, more classified organization) because I lived abroad for more than half of the last seven years at the time (which you'd think would've been an asset for this organization), some idiot named Gary Vollmer who thinks he's going to be "instantly transformed into [a] glorified spiritual body" in 15 days is in charge of making sure the terrorists don't get in. Um...

And speaking of terrorists, isn't this whole belief that Jesus is going to return (if not now, but some other time in the future) and rain fire upon the Earth just reducing the guy to a terrorist? Really, in this view, the Lord is basically Osama bin Laden, but with a much better hideout.

I mean, seriously. Come on. I'm not an atheist (I'm one of those dippy agnostics), but I just can't get behind any religion that calls for the mass destruction and eternal suffering of non-believers (especially if said non-believers are good people, living their lives in accordance with the rules of logic and optimizing happiness for all) via acts of divine terrorism. That's just evil. I can see the bumper stickers now: The Rapture -- Never Forget.

Anyway, kudos to the Post for alerting me to what is surely going to be the most anti-climactic weekend in this old man's life. I'm looking forward to the follow-up interview on May 22.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

nu site

Did you see it yet? I revamped my "professional site." Weirdly, I made it radically less professional. But I also started a new blog over there, one that relies less on poop jokes and gratuitous swearing (F*CK!) and more on actual ideas. Keep in mind, however, I say that fully knowing that today I incorporated the term "dry hump" into an essay about the ideas of fairness and impartiality in the growingly digital world of journalism.

So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and get over there! (Please.) And keep it in mind in the future, too, because if you come here and don't see anything new there's a good chance that's because I decided to write something entirely too long over there. Either that or I was too busy scouring YouTube to find more videos like this one:

Decidedly, that is something Jesus would never do. BUT HE WOULD CHECK OUT MY NEW SITE!

Monday, May 2, 2011

that's the way you do it

Wow. Some big things happened this weekend. First, what I think has got to be one of the coolest art openings in DC occurred at Irvine Contemporary. Second, as part of the Sweetlife Festival, one of the greatest American rock bands rocked DC at Merriweather Pavilion. And third, United States special forces rooted Osama bin Laden out of his cave mansion and killed the motherf*cker. And although at first I felt a bit conflicted about people celebrating a man's death, after watching this video posted as part of The Daily Beast's Daily Dish written by Andrew Sullivan, I remembered (which means, oh no, I forgot!) that bin Laden is was actually a monster. And, well, as the song goes, ding dong... 

But enough of that. I know you don't come here for international political analysis. You don't want to hear me blab on about how bin Laden's death, while not a bookend to the "War on Terror," will hopefully act as the motivational reminder we need to start wrapping this bad boy up. You don't want me to say that hopefully, the fact that bin Laden wasn't living like some sufferer for the cause in a cave, but instead like some rich old bastard in a mansion will disallow him from becoming a modern-day martyr. And I know no one wants me to analyze how this makes President Obama nearly untouchable in the next election. (I'm assuming Donald Trump reads my blog.)

And so I'll shut the f*ck up about that now and move on to the art and music I mentioned. This is America, after all, and thanks to 25 Navy Seals and the Joint Special Operations Command, I continue to have the freedom necessary to randomly change subjects. Or something.

So yeah, I went to Irvine Contemporary at 14th and P St. on Saturday night for the opening of Dataklysmos, a new exhibition by an artist named [dNASAb], which by some strange power is pronounced like Disney. And like his aural homonym, dNASAb's creations compose a magic kingdom of their own.

My first impression? "Holy Seamonster McGee!" Hanging from the ceiling of Irvine's stark interior were just under 10 chandeliers composed of LCD screens, fiberoptics, melted plastic, glass rods, crystal balls and lightbulbs. For someone who prefers the often minimalist lines of Bauhaus in her three-dimensional objects, I was initially a little turned off by what seemed like the excessive use of (and brace yourself for a real technical term here) do-dads. I like the idea of infusing modern technology -- and specifically embedding video like you'd do on a blog, for example -- with a classical genre like sculpture, but I didn't get the artistic decision to almost totally disguise it with so many proverbial bells and whistles. I thought it would have made a stronger impact had it all been simpler.

But then I spoke to the artist, whose beard was styled not unlike the protruding light rods on his work. Talking faster than most people think, he said something along the lines of the growing importance of interoperability between technologies and that it wasn't a neat subject; he said technology was messy and everywhere and constantly changing and moving. His gesticulations echoed his words.

I took another look at these bizarro chandeliers. The idea behind it now made more sense. It wasn't about aesthetics and showcasing technology as a building material, as much as it was about the evocation of a feeling that technology is a living organism. Alas, "Holy, Seamonster McGee!" was more right on than not. This very inorganic material looked very much alive. And while it may still not be my specific taste as far as what I'd want to look at in my home, it certainly made me think about technology and its effect on us in new ways. And sh*t, how often do you get to watch TV like this? See it for yourself through June 4.

So, we went from killing terrorists to contemporary art. Obviously, the next subject I want to talk about is your butt cheeks. OK, well, not your butt cheeks (hopefully), but the butt cheeks of several young twenty-somethings at this year's Sweetlife Festival, which happened yesterday. Look, I'm not a hater. If it's hot, by all means, air out your ass the best you can. But yesterday it was cold and rainy. I was even a bit chilly in jeans, boots, a sweater, a jacket, a scarf and gloves, so I can't imagine the amount of liquor necessary to keep warm the lady in a tube top, booty shorts, and flipflops, or the young woman wearing a miniskirt, gladiator sandals and a one-shoulder top. I mean, are the kids these days a whole helluva lot tougher than we were at 21 or just a lot dumber? If any young ladies read this blog, please, I'd love to know what the reasoning is behind such weather-inappropriate ensembles. YOU'LL CATCH A COLD!

But perhaps, I should take a break from talking about butt cheeks and explain what the Sweetlife Festival is to people who either don't live in DC or hate doing fun things. It's a day-long music fest run by the entrepreneurs at Sweetgreen, a company I fully endorse and frequent quite often because I love eating food that doesn't want to slowly kill me. These people also have incredible taste in music, having invited two of my favorite groups, Crystal Castles and The Strokes, to perform, as well as Cold War Kids, Lupe Fiasco and everyone's favorite wedding DJ, Girl Talk. And despite the rain and not because of the beer, I -- even in my now official old-fart status -- had a really good time. I was slightly peeved with the sound mixing of Crystal Castles and that their set was all of six songs long, but the others made up for it, especially The Strokes. What a motherf*cking great American rock band. God, the USA ruled this weekend.