Robble Robble Robble

In Brazil, the Hamburglar is known as Papaburguer.

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Long song titles:

  • “You Got To Get Through What You’ve Got To Go Through To Get What You Want, But You Got to Know What You Want To Get Through What You Got To Go Through,” The Wildhearts, Coupled With
  • “Some People Know All Too Well How Bad Liquorice, Or Any Candy For That Matter, Can Taste When Having Laid Out In The Sun Too Long – And I Think I Just Ate Too Much,” The Hives, Oh Lord! When? How?
  • “Sir B. McKenzies Daughter’s Lament for the 77th Mounted Lancers Retreat from the Straits of Loch Knombe, in the Year of Our Lord 1727, on the Occasion of the Announcement of Her Marriage to the Laird of Kinleakie,” Fairport Convention, Full House
  • “We Were Stoned When We Thought Up The Title Of This And We Didn’t Want To Give It A Name That We Had To Explain As ‘Oh Yeah We Were Stoned When We Thought Of It’ So We’re Just Calling It Improvisational Jam 11-02-01,” !!!, Brain In The Wire
  • “The Sad But True Story of Ray Mingus, the Lumberjack of Bulk Rock City, and His Never Slacking Strive to Exploit the So Far Undiscovered Areas of the Intention to Bodily From the Opposite Species of His Kind, During Intake of All the Mental Conditions that Could be Derived From Fermentation,” Rednex, Sex & Violins
  • “The Black Hawk War, or, How to Demolish an Entire Civilization and Still Feel Good About Yourself in the Morning, or, We Apologize for the Inconvenience but You’re Going to Have to Leave Now, or, I Have Fought the Big Knives and Will Continue to Fight Them until They Are off Our Lands!”, Sufjan Stevens, Illinois
  • “Regretting What I Said to You When You Called Me at 11:00 on Friday Morning to Tell Me That 1:00 Friday Afternoon You Were Gonna Leave Your Office, Go Downstairs, Hail a Cab, to Go Out to the Airport, to Catch a Plane, to Go Skiing in the Alps for Two Weeks. Not That I Wanted to Go With You; I Wasn’t Able to Leave Town, I’m Not a Very Good Skier, I Couldn’t Expect You to Pay My Way, But After Going Out With You for Three Years, I Don’t Like Surprises. (A Musical Apology),” Christine Lavin, Future Fossils

Heave!

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:1904_tug_of_war.jpg

Tug-of-war was an Olympic event in the early 20th century. Gold medalists:

  • 1900: Denmark
  • 1904: United States
  • 1906: Germany
  • 1908: Great Britain
  • 1912: Sweden
  • 1920: Great Britain

(The 1906 “intercalated” games were held to erase the embarrassment of 1904.)

Play It Again

“America the Beautiful” and “Auld Lang Syne” share the same meter — the songs can be sung perfectly with the lyrics interchanged:

Oh beautiful, for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and auld lang syne?

Bone Damage

John McCain can’t comb his own hair. He can’t lift his arms above shoulder level because of torture he suffered as a prisoner of war in Vietnam.

Starting Small

The first KISS concert drew an audience of three (at the Popcorn Club in Queens, January 1973).

The Bathtub Hoax

H.L. Mencken seemed to have a gift for cynicism — even the gold he touched turned to lead. In December 1917, as a joke, he composed a fictional history of the bathtub for the New York Evening Mail. The article, “A Neglected Anniversary,” was preposterous, saying that the bathtub had been introduced to England in 1828 and to the United States 14 years later, and that Millard Fillmore encouraged its acceptance by installing one in the White House in 1850.

To Mencken’s horror, the story was widely accepted as fact, and it’s still quoted today as an authoritative source. Mencken said:

“The success of this idle hoax, done in time of war, when more serious writing was impossible, vastly astonished me. It was taken gravely by a great many other newspapers, and presently made its way into medical literature and into standard reference books. It had, of course, no truth in it whatsoever, and I more than once confessed publicly that it was only a jocosity. … Scarcely a month goes by that I do not find the substance of it reprinted, not as foolishness but as fact, and not only in newspapers but in official documents and other works of the highest pretensions.”

Music to the Eyes

Most expensive music videos, as of July 2006:

  1. Michael and Janet Jackson, “Scream,” $7 million
  2. Puff Daddy, “Victory,” $2.7 million
  3. Mariah Carey, “Heartbreaker,” $2.5 million
  4. Busta Rhymes, “What’s It Gonna Be?!” $2.4 million
  5. Backstreet Boys, “Larger Than Life,” $2.1 million
  6. Ayumi Hamasaki, “Fairyland,” $2 million
  7. Madonna, “Bedtime Story,” $2 million
  8. Madonna, “Express Yourself,” $2 million
  9. Will Smith, “Miami,” $2 million
  10. Missy Elliot, “She’s a Bitch,” $2 million

The Dunmore Pineapple

My homeowners’ association would never allow this. Pineapples were big in 18th-century Europe, a rare delicacy and a symbol of wealth, so they got sculpted into everything: gateposts, railings, weather vanes, and door lintels. This stone cupola, 14 meters high, adorns Dunmore Park in Scotland, where they actually managed to grow live pineapples with a furnace-driven heating system. No mean feat.

In a Word

whiskerine
n. beard-growing contest