The Burrito Paradox

I’m eating a burrito for lunch, and—stay with me here, I promise this isn’t a what-I-ate-today post—

I’m eating it, and I take the first bite, and I’m a bit disappointed, because there was too much rice and not enough tasty queso sauce in that bite.  But with that disappointment comes excitement.

You have to understand that this is a hand-assembled burrito, one that I watched come into being just five minutes ago.  I don’t expect (or at least shouldn’t, rationally) that it will be mechanically perfect in the distribution of ingredients.  And because I watched its construction, I know the ingredients I want are in there.

And so that disappointing first bite is in fact a promise of ridiculous, luxurient flavor parties in some of the following bites.  I am pleased and excited to have taken a meh bite.

The burrito paradox!

I kind of doubt that will catch on.

Mefi User Sites: omiewise rules

The greater Metafilter metropolitan area expands a bit more, with mefite omiewise‘s announcement of this cool bit of off-site commentary:

Mefi User Sites

omie is strolling through the listed homepages and ancillary sites of this or that mefite, complete with annotated writeup.  Very cool, and obviously after my own heart.  And the possibility of getting the treatment might be enough incentive to get me off my lazy ass and updating my various blogs again.

Constructions of Awkwardness: DEA Edition

Last night, I was reading up on general medical underwriting practices and came across a phrase that stopped me in my tracks.  Terminating a list of things tested for in paramedical lab exams was this item:

Drugs of abuse.

Really?  Is that a common usage?  Well, close to a million googlehits can’t be wrong, I guess.  The DEA and a number of other US and foreign drug-related government entities seem to be using it in their literature, so I suppose I’m just late to the party on this one.

But it feels so awkward to me.  Why? 

For one thing, there’s something very self-consciously constructed about it: the “plural of descriptor” template moved years ago into the realm of PC-parody.  (I’d google for examples, but that strikes me as hard to pull off—the only static part of the template is the word “of”.)  We proceeded from earnest usage of “People of Color” to, eventually, satirical references to “People of Ugliness” or “Burritos of Bean” and so on.

Maybe “drugs of abuse” came into regular use a while back.  That I just noticed it now hardly suggests that it just started cropping up.

I wish I was more familiar with the history of pro- and anti-drug rhetoric in the US; it seems like there’s a lot of meat here, but I don’t know enough to really dig in.

Side note: it’s interesting that we have “drugs of abuse” as a category for the things required for “drug abuse”.  Are you a drug abuser?  Do you engage in drug abuse?  Then you use drugs of abuse, natch. 

Are there other constructions like this, where “foos of bar” are the fuel for the activity described as “foo bar”?

Mrs. WordPress, Internet Widow

Via metafilter, a charming pomo domestic drama: the blog of jilted, lonely Mrs. WordPress.

The whole thing is a bit inside baseball—a WordPress Blog includes an automatic test post including a comment by “Mr. WordPress”. Some folks delete it, some don’t. Well, a lot don’t. Note the ~157,000 hits for this search against some of the text of that default comment. Mr. WordPress gets around.

Sympathies, Mrs. W.

88 Lines About 44 Mefites

I spend—I think I’ve mentioned this before—a lot of time at Metafilter. The site as it exists is a product of, and house for, the community of users who have been there over the years (Mefi’s been around since 1999), and so there’s a lot of memorable personalities and landmark moments in its history.

It’s something I’ve thought about a fair bit, and detailed in some sense in entries on ReFi, and so I’ve collected a lot of MeFi trivia over the years by default. And I decided to turn it into a song, with annotated history-tracking lyrics.


88 Lines About 44 Mefites. Go there. Listen. Be, probably, confused by all these metafilter injokes. Read the lyrics, click the links, get a little peek into some of the social dynamics of the biggest little community blog on the web.

Album in a month: day 9

So. 9 days down. 19 to go. February doesn’t divide evenly by 3, so I can technically claim to have more than two thirds of the month left. Right? Right.

New demo, written this morning and recorded this afternoon. Simultaneously more and less complete than many of the others—I sort of let the vocal ideas fly here, but there’s a lot of revisions I want to make already, and a missing verse. This is the album’s my-home-town song, I guess.

Album in a month: further demos

Two more demos, actually recorded the other night at the same time as the previous four but I hadn’t had a chance to apply compression, mix down, encode, tag, and upload as of yesterday morning.

The first, When You Get a Girl, give you a reasonable idea of what I intend to do with the song. I’ll probably get really involved instrumentally with the album cut, but that basic, driving, unwavering form is going to stick around. The song operates as a sort of manifest of pre-adolescent playground-era received wisdom on the subject of girls—simplifications, half-truths and misconceptions handed down to clueless 10-year-olds by clueless 12-year-olds.

The second one, I Spend All My Free Time on the Internet, is much more an idea-reference track. I intend to make this an ass-thumping, grin-forcing exercise in sure pop energy, and so the current demo is, well, lame. It is to my vision what a science room skeleton is to Christopher Walken—similar in gross morphology, but not nearly as compelling or attractive. Ah well. Still have 19 days to go. Plenty of time!