Category Archives: Nerd game proper

Get low, Bus.

Even though I’m just a woman, a woman with a small brain (it’s science*), dainty lady-ness has a wonderful advantage when it comes to tactile sensations:

Women have a finer sense of touch than men due to smaller finger size, according to my boyfriend Science Daily. The facts of this discovery are described in sexy detail in the story – the central nervous system, for example, is stimulated by information sent by vibration receptors in the smaller fingertips of females. So because I’m a woman, when I feel it, you know, I really really feel it – whether it’s the flesh of a human male, a fluffy kitten, or the sexy sexy curve of the hole inside a 45. DOWN, BOY.

Next up, science, please explain the benefits of our smaller paychecks ’cause I’ve been struggling with that one for a minute now. Thanks, chief.

Of course, of courrrrse this story makes me think of that Busta song about French robots, ladies undressing, and echo-chamber handclaps. Touch it bring it pay it watch it turn it leave it stop format it. And then, once more with feeling: Touch it bring it pay it watch it turn it leave it stop format it.

First time I heard it, my brain rattled against my skull a tiny bit courtesy of Swizzy. I’m fine now, with medication and regular MRIs. ’05, nice to see you again, old friend.


* The Eiffel Tower = metal + brawn.


Eno. EBT. Science. Devin. Tribe.

1. Brian Eno says Cool is Dead. Not as dope as “God is dead or “Paul is dead,” but he’s Brian Eno so he gets a pass.

Using a “go into a record store and look around” metaphor that I fully endorse, Eno says that because anybody can access cool things anywhere, nobody has a monopoly on cool anymore.

“We’re living in a stylistic tropics,” he says. “The idea that something is uncool because it’s old or foreign has left the collective consciousness.” Point taken, Brian; however, I must ask: why is this a good thing? Cool is the way of weeding out awful people who I don’t want to talk to at the bar. Cool used to be hard to interlope upon. Now anybody can be cool, which makes cool’s value plummet. Please revise your little theory and have the full report on my desk by Tuesday, 8 AM. Love, the Arbiter of Cool.

2. 1 in 4 kids in my country is receiving food stamps. To eat. To survive. Unfortunately, because I’m kind of a bad person, this does nothing to make the cover of Return to the 36 Chambers less comical to me.

But really. What’s the opposite of “Yay Americuh and its relentless hustle”? ‘Cause I want that on a sign that I can wave to and fro right about now.
[NY Times]

3. People hear with their skin, as well as their ears; skin helps us hear by ‘feeling’ soundsScientific American. HOLY CHRIST, Life Is Wonderful! Related:

a) Devin the Dude still ruling, still making albums;

b) Tribe documentary pending via Mike Rapaport and Nasir Jones, including appearances by such hiphop luminaries as Ghostface and….Jonah Hill. ‘Cause everybody needs a chubby white dude in their hiphop doc to legitimize it, that’s why.

I’ll be gone from KORB.


No hustle is superior to that whole “Being Attractive” hustle.


Hey wait, where’s the blue squiggly line?

Ohhh. Right.

Sad Trombone sound bite

“We like ass. Wake up, sweetheart.” – everyone with an Internet, to me.

(Things also do not turn out well when you put in “Blu” + “Drake,” just sayin.)

I will frequently be focused on including this in a post about rankings of any sort. Search volume rankings? Well, here you go. Althea & Donna – “Uptown Top Ranking.”



Communications 306: Images of Hip-Hop in Popular Media.

It’s everywhere we look, this hiphop thing – part of the cultural zeitgeist at large and an accepted method of interpersonal engagement on a micro level (like when I have you come over and we do some Red-Stripe-fueled analysis of “Come Clean”). The goal of this course is to facilitate the improvement of students’ ability to analyze, organize, and critically think about communicative messages while becoming better equipped to articulate ideas. To that end, please turn in your papers critically analyzing MCs’ wearing of glasses to court as a visual signifier, and such a choice’s related legal implications, at the end of class today.


An Afghan boy makes his way over a stream. The US is reviewing its strategy in Afghanistan, where the war is in its ninth year. [Altaf Qadri/AP/Oct. 7, 2009]

First I think, amazing picture, just beautiful. And also:

“You’re living at a time of extremism, a time of revolution
a time where there’s got to be a change. People in power have misused it
and now there has to be a change, and a better world has to be built,
and the only way it’s going to be built is with extreme methods
and I for one will join with anyone, don’t care what color you are,
as long as you want change this miserable condition that exists on this earth. Thank you.

Then I think You are now rocking with the Def. (uh-oh, uh-ohhhh)


NY Times. Oct. 18, 2009

First I think: Football. I like football. I am so pleased that I have Kyle Orton on my Fantasy Football team. He was a sleeper and I picked him up off of waivers because I’m a visionary.

Then I think: Top Billin is secondary to nothing, ill-informed NY Times headline writer! Good lord, you’re an idiot. Also, I think about the amazing amount of one-liners culled from this song that I’ve used in my blog and in general conversation with my mom and the pizza guy and Aunt Jean over the years. SO MANY. That’s what we get/Got it good, When I’m bustin up a party I feel no guilt, stop schemin and lookin hard, to be down you must appeal, Mom & Dad, they knew the time, the super-easy-modest-MC-oh-kayyy.

Also, Milk and Ghosty should do a duet…a very high-pitched duet.


Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad takes notes during the morning session at the 64th United Nations General Assembly at the U.N. headquarters in New York, September 23, 2009. [Shannon Stapleton/Reuters]

First I think: Remember when this dude totally freaking sonned George W on 60 Minutes with his satisfied smile and his swarthy looks and beard? (I like a scruffy face; it gets me every time). “What religion, please tell me, tells you as a follower of that religion to occupy another country and kill its people, please tell me, does Christianity tell its followers to do that?” (Please refer back to the first image in this post, at no. 1 above.)

Then I think: “Penmanship”! It works on so many levels. Also, I think: Black Milk, Duck Dowwwwwnnnn, so many nice bars from this guy over the years. I really like Skyzoo. And I really really love to say Skyzoo. Go on, it’s fun.


A competitor trains on the bike the day before the Ironman World Championship triathlon competition in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. [Hugh Gentry/Reuters/October 9, 2009]

Caution: Ironman. Not in training, really – just being, sitting and breathing and existing and doing it so well. Look at the handwork and facework on display here, the head cocked just so. OH GHOSTYYYY! Slide over here, and give me a moment/Your moves are so raw, I’ve got to let you know/You’re one of my. Kind.


First graders work with XO laptop computers at a public school in Montevideo October 13, 2009. [Andres Stapff/Reuters]

First I think: Dude. Whether you’re 7 and living in Uruguay, or you’re a grown-up superhuman producer, computers kill it and have the power to excite.

Then I think: I am captivated by the fact that these 2 are dressed like they’re attending totally different functions. Quik got all pressed and white-collared, and Rizz is like, “You know, I think I’m gonna wear my baseball shirt.”


A Jordanian woman supporter of opposition parties holds medals depicting the Al-Aqsa mosque during a demonstration in Amman October 9, 2009. [Ali Jarekji/Reuters]

Not many thoughts here, other than:

Fatburger (40 used to own one);
I’m hungry. I always pick “Outstanding” on the Fatburger jukebox. I should go to Fatburger. I’m really quite hungry. “Girl you knock me out.”
That song is still the jam and probably always will be;
Rick Rock is good at producing songs and our love knows not the limits of time and space;

Whatever happened to The Luniz?


Aww!: Krylon edition

JOEY WAS HERE. And he cares about the United Way.

In 1992 a professor performed an experiment in a public restroom and discovered a completely effective way to prevent people writing on public bathroom walls. See, what you do is you appeal to their desire to help provide funding to a network of community-based assistance agencies that serve kids and families! Science, you never cease to amaze!


T. Steuart (yes, that’s really how he spells it) Watson, a professor at Miami University of Ohio, selected 3 fucked-up men’s bathrooms in which to carry out his experiment. They were covered in writing – “each room had a history writ large, and small, in many different hands” (the story is from The Guardian, and I just like that fancy Brit way of describing the bathroom landscape). Each of the walls had been repainted numerous times due to the amounts of graffiti during the months preceding the experiment; new tags popped up every day.

Over the next 50 days, Watson implemented his treatment to see how humans could be motivated to knock it off. It was completely effective, a total success.

The treatment was simple – taping a sign on the wall like this:

During the 3-month study period, no marking occurred on any of the walls. They remained graffiti-free, no markings, clean and untouched. That’s nice, right? “Aww, dudes in bathrooms with pens are kind-hearted!” is the appropriate response here. Watson then published a report about his method in the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, where professional science nerds saw it and discussed it and this is how it trickled down to amateur science nerds such as myself.

And he actually did donate the money – though it was a not-very-generous 5 cents per day, per bathroom. Nice one, professor. Thus, with three restrooms in play, the total payoff for charity was $2.50 per restroom – a combined $7.50 due to dudes quelling their itch to get up in the men’s room. I mean, you guys must have a need to really fucking bomb because it is exceedingly gangster to do so in the bathroom facility of a bar, but in this experiment the subjects managed to push that burning desire deep down inside. Dude, you had some ups in the men’s room at the Cha Cha! What’s your crew and/or are they well-respected? Skeme, is that you?

Why was the treatment so effective? Watson thinks that bathroom-goers seeing the sign indicating that somebody cared about the blank wall space was enough to compel them to leave it alone – especially given that somebody was willing to give money to a nice thing like the United Way. Prior to posting the signs, “bare walls appeared to function as discriminative stimuli for graffiti, perhaps because it was not apparent that anyone cared.” (Discriminative stimuli is the catch phrase of the day. Please use it in at least 3 of your social interactions by 4 PM today.)

Extra credit goes to the professor for not being all surprised that dudes who write on bathroom walls can be decent human beings. I was waiting for that stance to be taken – Shut up, nobody who uses a Krink on the men’s room wall cares about children or the agencies that assist them! – but it didn’t happen, much to my delight.

Deer Tick – “Art Isn’t Real.” I’m not saying I agree with this; in fact, art is very much real. I’m still hanging round and round/Sometimes it’s a racket, but lately not a sound/In the bowels of history and time/I have learned to stay back and never shine. Get ’em, Providence.



Monch. Science?/racism. Tracy.

1. Monchichi wants me to be at this show celebrating the 10th anniversary of Internal Affairs but my tickets got lost in the mail. Can you help?

Do the humans behind this know how dumb “Invited Guests” sounds? Who will stand behind me in the crowd to catch me if all the Invited Guests actually show (as this will cause me to faint)? If I actually rub on my breastesses when Monch instructs me to during the inevitable performance of “Simon Says,” how can I make sure my mom doesn’t find out? Will my heels stay pretty and scuff-free despite being in a room full of dudes in boots? How come Po isn’t an Invited Guest? Is there a feud between these 2 gentlemen that you guys have been keeping from me because you knew I’d get upset if I heard about it? And why is the show in Brooklyn of all places?

2. The resurgence of physiognomy is awfully reminiscent of eugenics and phrenology (not the good kind) and this does not have nearly enough people expressing outrage (Slate). Apparently, you know, you can just tell by the looks of a fellow whether he is going to stick you for your Jordans.
(Oh sorry. It’s not ’89. Your Comme des Garcons x Alife x Schnabel x Barbara Kruger dunks.)

Black Thought’s code name is The Only One and Cody wants to fertilize another behind his lover’s back. This song is full of classified information.


3. I’m usually not one to shill for Random House, but I’ll do anything for boyfriend #13,521, Tracy Morgan. Until he meets an untimely demise (it’s coming, people), which will mean that my dream of Redman hosting the next VH1 honors show is realized, he’s here to spread good cheer with his e-cards.


Recently laid off

PS, why is this still here?
I saw it on my TV recently during a VH1 program about Def Jam records.


I’d like more of this instead, please.

. .

Oh Word? (Prince Rakeem/Slav/’70s prog-rock edition)

Somebody at Slate read my mind and wanted to know why those kooky Slavs are so darn good at chess. More than half of the Top 20 players in the world come from Russia or another former Soviet Republic. Why, though? First of all, good question, Slate – and one that I’ve thought about but was too lazy to research. Thanks for doing all the legwork. Second of all, Saint Petersburg must be in Staten Isle. Clearly. Also, the etymology of the word chess excites me in a special way that I’m certain all my fellow lady English majors understand.

“13c., from O.Fr. esches, pl. of eschec (related to ‘check’), from the key move of the game. The original word for ‘chess’ is Skt. chaturanga, ‘four members of an army’ – elephants, horses, chariots, foot soldiers.” (OED)

Pictured on the left: the seven in the center of the eight-pointed sun.
Also, isn’t it weird neither RZA nor GZA had verses on Chessboxin? I mean, the 2 chess fanatics? What happened there? OH CLAN, your eternal mysteries captivate me.

Anyway, Russia has been so adept at chess over the years because the Soviets subsidized the game. Chess evolved from a much older Indian game and came to Russia through trade routes in Persia and India; it’s been popular in Russia for generations and became a national pastime in the early 1900s after the Bolsheviks took power (leftists love mind-fuckery, even in board games). The commander of the Soviet army under Lenin started state-sponsored chess, opening chess schools, hosting tournaments, and promoting the game as a vehicle for international dominance. They then, um, dominated. Internationally. Russians won lots of international chess titles over lots of years. So that was a pretty good plan.

The Soviets also saw chess as embodying their revolutionary ideals and intellectual talents that they held in high regard. Plus it was cheap, anyone could play it regardless of class, and to Soviet leaders, “its back-and-forth dynamic reflected the dialectical concept of history espoused by Marxism. Related to this crazy idea of people working together to get their needs met (??), the Russians developed a reputation for collective thinking when it came to the game. Players were sometimes told set aside personal victory, to lose on purpose in tournaments, in order to allow better players to advance. In 1972, at a match between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky, dozens of Soviet grandmasters huddled during breaks and debated what Spassky’s next action should be, which of course makes me think of Family Feud. Or a swordfight, where you must think first, before you move. Fischer, by contrast, only brought one assistant. (Because he was a jerk and a show-off. Go Americuh. PS, he went crazy. Holocaust-denying, paranoid crazy. Chess will fuck you up. Somebody keep an eye on RZA.)

And after all this, not one Grandmasters mention?? Slate, please see me after class.

Yes – “I’ve Seen All Good People.” Because it is epic, it is pretty, it is melodic, it is about chess, and it contains John Anderson’s ’70s vocal fierceness. Just too fantastic. And because I think I’ve reached my Wu tipping point this week (!) so I decided to go with some classic Dad-record-collection music. And because it contains the eternally true lyric-as-life instruction
Don’t surround yourself with yourself. I mean it. Don’t.


And just for fun, here we have a new clip of Rizzies in a denim suit talking in that way he talks, with that voice he has and that accent he has (why thank you, Crate Kings). The topic at hand is how much Prince Paul rules the fucking planet. In case you forgot.


Nina Simone and Gab and Xcel are valuable because they make me feel good.

There is only one universal value: pleasure, says new science research.

Yup. me when I’m getting my lower back lightly touched, David Duchovny’s penis, and everyone on heroin.

Friendship, knowledge, health, and prosperity are all things most of us would call valuable. But why? What is value? Hedonism explains it all!

Philosopher David Brax posits that pleasure is the only thing that is valuable in itself. His theory, submitted in his dissertation at Lund University (??) and which is now heralded within the scientific community for some reason but I’m going with it, develops the hedonistic philosophical tradition, with roots in antiquity. Brax explains that he has investigated what value actually is, and he also develops a theory of his own regarding what pleasure is, in support of hedonism. I also hear he loves nerdy lady bloggers who are comfortable with their sexuality. And then I heard we might be going on a date this weekend. OH those wacky Internet rumors.

If we want to understand what value is, we need to examine both how and why we value things. My theory is based on the observation that the pleasure system is central to these explanations. Why do we feel that friendship is valuable? Because friendship is so often associated with positive feelings. For many values the explanation is considerably more complicated, but their origin is the pleasure system, explains Brax.

“Haircuts, listening to Rakim, finding a $100 bill, and making music that’ll bump for a thousand years are intrinsically valuable,” explains Blackalicious,

To which I will simply add HIT IT, NINA.

Nina Simone – “Feeling Good”



. . .

Scientists won’t let the swarm be great.

Overt group pride = group insecurity, say social scientists.

Research nerds (other than myself) seem to think that the hubris and expressions of braggart-ness displayed by a certain crack commando unit of MCs are an indication of insecurity and low social status as opposed to a sign of strength.

The new study reveals how two types of pride are related to a person’s good feelings about one social group or another to which they belong. These good feelings could come from being a Los Angeles Lakers fan (when they win), a war veteran, a member of a particular ethnic group or a sorority gal or fraternity brother. But while authentic pride is linked with real confidence in your group, hubristic pride is a false arrogance that belies insecurities about one’s group.

To this, I say It’s not braggin if you can back it up. I would also like to add: SUUUU.

This news is nothing new in my life, as I am aware that the groups with the most unwavering convictions to fight for what is good and just have historically been the recipients of the most hatred: feminists, Black Panthers, grown men who refer to themselves as swarming bees, thick like plaster, and who are like soldiers of fortune on the run for a crime they didn’t commit. If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them…

Oh the triumph in this song! Don’t you feel like you could totally punch somebody in the face and get away with it when you hear this?

(See, also ’cause there was that song “Triumph.” It works on so many levels.)

. . .

David Gilmour, you are nothing in the face of unbridled Los Angeles hip hop

At night we praise Allah and adore the moon.
– Wu

Syd Barrett, clutching himself out of sheer tortured brilliance,
and some other dudes trying to catch his light.

Obviously you’re already seen this “Top 10 Amazing Moon Facts” feature on, obviously, but I really wanted to drive some of the main points home for you.

The most important and life-altering part of the article is Fact #8 – that, Contrary to what you might have heard, there is no ‘dark side’ of the moon. There is, however, a ‘far side’ that we can’t see from Earth (The) moon goes around the Earth once and spins on its axis once, all in the same amount of time, and it shows us just one face the whole time.

Aw. So sorry, pale concept-album Brits! Turns out creative dudes from LA have one-upped you again, Pink Floyd. Shoulda worked with J-Swift in the studio around ’92; you probably wouldn’t be looking so bloody foolish right now. BLIMEY.

The Pharcyde – “Oh Shit.” ‘Cause it’s underrated, and ’cause I already did a tired old Passin‘ Me By” post.


I’m not the kind of girl/Who gives up just like that. Oh no.
Bonus science x record collection nerdage like I’m Isaac Asimov writing for Wax Po while wearin a bathing suit. You guys should be paying me more; you really should.

Fact #2 – Tides on Earth are caused by the moon’s gravity pulling on Earth’s oceans. In a lovely Sun Ra-ish image, high tide aligns with the moon as Earth spins underneath – and another high tide occurs on the opposite side of the planet at the same time because of this same effect. At full moon and new moon, the sun, Earth and moon are lined up, producing higher than normal tides (called spring tides, for the way they spring up).

All this tugging has another interesting effect: Some of Earth’s rotational energy is stolen by the moon, causing our planet to slow down by about 1.5 milliseconds every century. Our days are getting longer and longer.

The Paragons (written/sung by John Holt!) – “The Tide is High.” Sorry, Debbie H. Nice try, mama.