April 30, 2008


Posted mostly for my own benefit. Then again, so is pretty much this whole site.

Posted by Ryan at 11:19 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

The worst thing about clipping your fingernails

You have to completely re-learn how to pick your nose.

Posted by Ryan at 11:03 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 29, 2008

That's Why I'm A ThunderJournalist and He's The Law Talking Guy

When LearnedFoot goes on a rant, it really is a thing of beauty.

Posted by Ryan at 01:23 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 28, 2008

Playing With Bubbles

I have to be honest, I'm sick and tired of missing out on all of the world's best bubbles. There are apparently bubbles all over the place; huge expansive bubbles bobbing all around, and yet I've never had the chance to play with any of them.

Of course, the main reason I can never see and play with these bubbles is because NOBODY can apparently clearly see them until they burst, at which point everyone can plainly see the soapy, polluted detritus left behind from the collosal bubble burst.

Take, for example, the Internet Bubble that burst in the late '90s and early Oughts. That was, apparently, a gargantuan bubble, and no one even seemed aware of it until. . . BANG! When that bubble burst, boy, it left a serious mess. You couldn't walk outside for months without being dolloped by dot-com and start-up residue. The clean up from the Internet Bubble burst easily outstripped any Exxon oil spill. People where scrubbing Internet Bubble off ducks for what seemed like ages. It was an environmental catastrophe.

In the years following the Internet Bubble burst, the world became complacent about the existence of rogue, oversized, invisible bubbles. The only real bubble people seemed to be worried about was the possibility of a new Internet Bubble, which experts kept saying was going to burst at any moment, so people were advised to keep their duck scrubbing brushes at the ready, even though most people had thrown out their duck brushes years ago.

Now all of a sudden here we are again, in the midst of another huge bubble burst. Only this time, instead of the Internet being to blame, it was the invisible Housing Bubble that went all blooey.

This burst has created another huge mess, affecting hundreds of thousands of people. Once again, you can't go outside without being covered in slimy mortgage goo and slipping on sub-prime sauce. This stuff is far messier than anything produced by the Internet Bubble burst. It's just as well people didn't hold on to their duck brushes, because nothing short of wire mesh is capable of combing this crud out of a duck's plumage. It's nasty, nasty stuff.

As disgusting as the Housing Bubble Burst pollution is, I can't help but imagine that the Housing Bubble would have been awesome to play with when it was still intact. It would have been fun to bob it it around, passing it from person to person like a global game of bouncing a beach ball around a packed stadium. It would have been nice to at least have had some fun with the Housing Bubble before it popped and sploshed all over the place.

Thankfully, there's still talk about another Internet Bubble burst on the horizon, so keep a keen lookout for your chance to play with a really big bubble.

And buy a new duck brush, just in case.

Posted by Ryan at 05:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Doing My Part

I'd just like to point out that I've done my own little part in helping to propagate the nonsensical, media-driven BS that is the "green" initiative. Almost two years ago, I wrote this, with a straight face and everything, knowing full well I was penning feel-good PR.

As usual, I apologize to no one.

Posted by Ryan at 01:58 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Today's Epiphany

The Internet is one big lie.

Posted by Ryan at 01:34 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

What the hell is a "Miley Cyrus?"

Seriously, it sounds like a kind of skin disease.

Posted by Ryan at 10:57 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 26, 2008

Stereo Type?


I sometimes ponder the possibility that the Media is unintentionally putting race relations back about 20 years during this election cycle.

Posted by Ryan at 11:10 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

April 25, 2008

My Equation, Let Me Show You It

It is my belief that the sheer unavoidable ubiquity by which a movie is advertised and promoted is directly proportional to how much that movie most likely is a world-class pile of stink.

With that in mind, I can pretty confidently state you won't be able to get within three blocks of any theater showing "Baby Mama" without gasping from the horrid stench.

Posted by Ryan at 02:26 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

April 24, 2008


Ryan says: http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2007/4/16/

Caroline says: oh jebus

Ryan says: I'd totally play 3-D Rape Machine.

Caroline says: Yeah you would.

Ryan says: Or, as I call it, "Saturday night."

Caroline says: When no means yes.

Posted by Ryan at 01:51 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 23, 2008

It's Funny Because It's True



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April 22, 2008

Economics 101

If I’m to understand media reports correctly, the American economy is supposedly in a shambles. If I were to glance out my window, I should see the American economy in the distance, exploding in nuclear mushroom cloud glory. The economy is DOOMED!


I’ve noticed the economy is always supposedly doomed during a presidential election year. If we were smart, as a nation, we’d simply stop holding presidential elections so the economy would stop being doomed every four years. Of course, America would have to name me High Chancellor for Life of the United States of America, but we should all be willing to make such sacrifices in the interests of economic stability.

As it is, we’re stuck with our Constitutionally-required process for electing presidents to perform a four year temp job, so I’m currently out of luck when it comes to my bid for the High Chancellor-ship, and the American economy will continue to suffer as a result.

Seriously, the American economy is very important. It was invented back in 1874 by an Irish migrant fishing boat captain named Capt. O’Industry. It was a quaint-looking economy, powered by nothing more than a little kerosene and elbow grease. The economy he invented wasn’t very sustainable in the long run, however, and it eventually broke down on the side of the road in October of 1929.

Americans, understandably, were crestfallen when the economy broke down. For years, they had loved and cherished the American economy, so when it broke down, it was like losing a family member, and there was a considerable mourning period, sometimes referred to as the Great Depression.

A period of economic restructuring followed. Known as “World War II,” the aggressive economic revitalization project relied heavily on military investments, with a minor tangential geo-political focus on the countries of Germany and Japan and, to a lesser extent, Italy. Although the exact details are sketchy, America nevertheless emerged with a super-charged, shiny new, eight-cylinder economy, with killer chrome trim and leather seats. This economy attracts all the chicks.

Unfortunately, the new American economy runs on oil and, to make matters more complicated, countries like India and China have built their own heavy muscle economies so they can compete in the “Earth 365” race with everyone else. Of course, since they built their economies on the American model—they stole the blueprints; long story—their economies run on oil, too.

So, now you have all these countries entering their oil-chugging—though admittedly super-cool looking—economies into the “Earth 365,” which of course means everyone is trying to get their hands on the same oil reserves as everyone else. And now those two economic meddlers, Charles Supply and Nicholas Demand, have come to the table, two men who are notorious when it comes to setting prices on everything.

Well, as you may have guessed, Supply and Demand have dictated higher oil prices, which means it’s costing Americans more to keep our economy up and running and competing in the “Earth 365.”

It seems everyone, especially presidential contenders, has some sort of plan for improving the American economy—which, remember, is DOOMED. Some people believe a hybrid economy is the way to go, while others think we should look at ways to make our existing economy more efficient. Still others think we should just paint our economy and “go green.”

As for me, I’m still holding out for the position of High Chancellor for Life. Such are my modest ambitions.

Posted by Ryan at 06:01 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Spring Fever = Sucky Blogging

I admit it. I'm a bad ThunderJournalist lately. It's spring. I've been outside. I've been thinking of other things. I have a sunburn. My left big toe is killing me; I think it may be broken. Lousy Jiu-Jitsu *shakes fist*

Posted by Ryan at 10:48 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 21, 2008

Internet Commenting, Illustrated Perfectly

This could very well be how any number of YouTube comment threads would play out in real life.

UPDATE: For those of you wondering what the hell this is, here you go.

Posted by Ryan at 10:38 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 18, 2008


Well, I'm not quite ready to divulge right now. . .

But today, was a really great day.

Posted by Ryan at 09:44 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

As I See the Waters

Back in 2004, I really thought the Internet--i.e. blogs and ThunderJournals--would be a monumental force come the 2008 election.

As it is, although the Internet is arguably more popular and powerful than ever, the world of personal online commentary, as I see it today, is a far less potent force than it was just four years ago. The technologies driving blogs, ThunderJournals and other avenues of personal opinion that were once all the buzz are now being absorbed and leveraged by more traditional media outlets (despite A LOT of resistance). online journals aren't hip and edgy any more; they just are. . . another cog in the media machine. Hell, even the magazines I write for now have their own blog counterparts.

The Web, as it has done since its inception, has evolved in rapid and unexpected ways. It's like watching the evolution of mankind, except in 5X fast-forward and in digital format.

The Internet today? It's like television with a comment box.

Posted by Ryan at 10:45 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 17, 2008

And an Oil Change

Ryan says: Okay, for some reason, the song "Unbreak my heart" popped into my head.

Caroline says: Awww. I haven't been gone THAT long.

Ryan says: But, that's not the funny part.

Ryan says: I was singing it to myself while writing some notes, and the following lyric shot forth:

Ryan says: "Unfart my brakes."

Caroline says: OMG I hate it when my brakes have fart.

Ryan says: A brake unfartening costs huge at Tires Plus.

Caroline says: Unless you have the lifetime unfartening warantee.

Posted by Ryan at 02:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 16, 2008

The Tribunal Has Spoken. . . Again

And we've decided, again, Nick Coleman's an idiot.

Posted by Ryan at 10:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 15, 2008

Very Enzyme-ish Today

I can't believe the amount of snot I can produce during a given cold-besotten day. Each reverse-snuffle into a wad of paper towels procured from the bathroom results in enough slimy nasal discharge to coat an entire clutch of alien face-hugger eggs.

Posted by Ryan at 09:57 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 14, 2008

My New Favorite FAIL Picture


That's just. . . perfect.

Posted by Ryan at 10:56 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Mr. Coleman Meets the InterTubes

I've used this little slice of the Worldwide Web to pick on Nick Coleman mercilessly over the last few years for a variety of reasons:

-- He can't write for shit.

-- He's logically impaired to the point of qualifying for disability checks.

-- He's reactionary enough to be a nuclear bomb.

-- He's just generally a dumbass.

-- It's fun to rip him a nice, fresh fecal excretion aperture, if for no other reason but for something to do.

One of Coleman's trademark deficiencies over the years has been his apparent inability to grasp the evolving world of the Internet. On the one hand, he wields Google like a drunk cowboy in an attempt to augment whatever point he's trying to make, and he seems to revere Google search results as gospel. On the other hand, he's treated online journals such as blogs with nothing but the utmost disdain ever since they first started exposing him as the neanderthal journalist he most certainly is.

So it was with a barely-concealed guffaw when I happened over to the Minnesota Monitor--a site that sort of looks like an online newspaper conceived, created, and maintained by crackheads--and saw a couple of Nick Coleman comments.

Leaving aside the sheer idiocy of the comments--hey Nick, yes, more people will visit a free zoo over a fee zoo, but I don't feel as though I should have to be taxed for the free zoo, what with me living in Rochester and all--it's Nick's online profile that provides the biggest laugh-out-loud scream:

Twin Cities journalist (35 years; half at Pioneer Press, half at Star Tribune), columnist (more than 3,000) and commentator, bane of wing-nuts. Big brother and God-father of St. Paul mayor. Father of six, all in hockey skates. Let's pick sides.

Honest to God, I've read less self-absorbed MySpace profiles. Seriously, you read that a couple of times, and you start to wonder if Nick has it spray-painted in 276-pt bold font on his "Me Wall" in his home.

"Bane of wing-nuts?" Only if you consider being mocked, ridiculed and dismissed across the board as a nattering dumbass, I suppose.

Anyway, it's nice to see Nick trying to grasp the InterWebs, I guess. I suppose it's appropriate that one of the first online cesspools he jumps into is Minnesota Monitor. It suits him.

Posted by Ryan at 09:20 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

April 13, 2008

Mixed Martial Arts Update

Travis Wiuff won the heavyweight title, fighting at the debut of YAMMA pit fighting.

For now, anyway, you can view Travis's second fight on YouTube, at least until it's taken down by the copyright gods:

Posted by Ryan at 01:59 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 11, 2008

Garlic On A Massive Scale

I'm a fan of garlic. I've been a fan ever since I lived in Japan. A meal infused with garlic, in my most humble opinion, is a meal infused with awesome.

I have, however, been made acutely aware of the after-effects of garlic ingestion. Over the years, I've been able to pick up on the body language of those around me who absorb the wafting waves of my garlic aura. Garlic that's gone through the human digestive process and is being excreted via the skin, lungs and brainwaves smells considerably different than garlic in its fresh, unsullied form. And that revamped smell is, quite honestly, repulsive.

I've been both on the receiving and administering end of the garlic bodily excretion treatment. Back in my wrestling days in Japan, grappling with a sweaty individual who had eaten ten cloves of garlic the previous day was the aromatic equivalent of trying to subdue an inexplicably-animated corpse that had been rotting for three weeks.

It's a very peculiar smell: it's not quite like overpowering body odor, but there's that component mixed with a gasoline/paint thinner/turpentine/nuclear radiation thing going on. If you can successfully wrestle with a garlic afficionado without passing out from the fumes, you're probably a good candidate for a lucrative career cleaning Port-O-Potties.

Given my experience wrestling with those oozing garlic from their pores, it's perhaps a bit surprising that I became one of their ranks. I suppose it's a bit like being bitten by a vampire: oh, sure, it appears horrifying on its surface, but curiousity tells you there's maybe something more to it.

And there is! I've found garlic to be a great addition to practically every meal, except for maybe cereal. I genuinely enjoy ridiculous amounts of garlic in some of the food I prepare, and I approach the preparation of such meals fully aware that I'm entering into an unspoken and unwritten social contract that stipulates I'm foregoing any close human contact with the non-garlic population for at least the next day-and-a-half. If I have important meetings or engagements within the next couple of days, I make a mental note to keep the garlic locked away.

Of course, in some instances, human contact in the post-garlic quarantine time just isn't avoidable. When I'm training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, for example, I just know the taint of garlic is coming off my skin in clouds, and my grappling opponents are enduring aromatic hell. I think of it as kind of an advantage, really.

Well, about a week ago, my future wife, herself a garlic enthusiast, discovered "elephant garlic," which is basically a form of garlic that's roughly the size of a softball. This stuff is HUGE. She broke off a clove to include in a dish we prepared last night, and it was like slicing a potato.

So, today, I'm basically a walking WMD for anyone who gets within sniff-shot, and I apologize to no one.

Posted by Ryan at 10:20 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

April 09, 2008

Basement Dweller

I've spent the last four years slowly gutting the basement so as to prep it for remodeling. I honestly can't believe the amount of time and effort that was required to gut that mofo. Pickup load after pickup load of detritus trucked off to the recycling center. Probably more than ten trips all told.

Next came the wall preparation, coating the cinder blocks in a sealant substance that smelled like dirty socks dipped in formaldehyde. Now we're having plumbing work done, which is not a particularly cheap undertaking, which sucks, because I'm a cheap guy, so it's kind of a matter/anti-matter confluence.

I try to tell myself it's all an investment, but given the housing market, I'm not all that convinced.

Posted by Ryan at 12:03 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Yeah, But. . .

LeBlanc sent me this via e-mail (for those not familiar with LeBlanc, she's here).

It's an interesting read, another in a long line of articles over the years about the decline of newspapers and the need to change, and I agree with quite a bit of it. Not all, though.

National and world news is now, in my opinion, practically the sole domain of the Web. If you're consulting a hardcopy newspaper or a magazine for your worldly news, you're at least 24 hours behind anyone with an Internet connection. I gave up my TIME subscription years ago, because I had read about all the main topics a week earlier. It was like watching a re-run.

Still, there are newspapers that recognize in-depth, local reporting is the key to remaining viable. The Rochester Post-Bulletin, for example, though I do so enjoy taking jabs at them from time to time, is a newspaper that's taking bold steps to focus on local stories, while at the same time opening up their articles to virtually unfettered reader commentary (which can get immediately tiresome, believe me).

On the other hand, you have the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, which seems to regard the Web as some sort of annoying Ham radio, that's bound to go away if they just grit their teeth hard enough and wait it out. Oh, sure, they're dipping their toe in the water with such endeavors as buzz.mn, but seeing as how they've been promising a redesign of that site for almost a year, and we're still being subjected to the image of the dog-faced boy, I don't get the feeling they're taking it all that seriously.

All that said. . . er, written. . . I have a confession to make. As much as I like blogging/ThunderJournaling, and as much as I've been a proponent over my six years of penning content, I see blogging on the decline. Oh, sure, you have your old guard, the bloggers who have been in the thick of things for four or more years and show no signs of letting up, but I've deleted a lot more abandoned blogs from my blogroll than I've added over the past couple years. MySpace and FaceBook have exploded in popularity over the last couple years, because their GUIs (yes, GUIs; get off my lawn) are a lot more intuitive and user friendly than even Blogger can provide.

Anyway, I guess my point is that I see a shift taking place where people are gravitating back towards more traditional news outlets, except that they're gravitating towards those outlets that have evolved a bit to include some of the community aspects of blogging/myspace/facebook/forums.

Unfortunately, that shift has given birth to such online embarrassments as "Minnesota Monitor," which has devolved into a parody of a parody of itself. If you take that site seriously, there's not much modern medicine can do to help you. Even MSNBC.com seems to be yelling headlines at you in the hopes one of them will stick.

On the other hand, there are media outlets, such as the aforementioned Post-Bulletin, which do seem to understand how to move forward and survive.

I guess I have no real point to this post, other than to state that I'm awesome, and my ThunderJournal's not going anywhere any time soon.

Posted by Ryan at 08:13 AM | Comments (12) | TrackBack

April 08, 2008

That's a bold claim!


This was an ad I saw on MSNBC.com. It made me laugh, then it made me wonder if it's not, in fact, an example of "flagrantly false advertising," as Otto on "The Simpsons" might say.

Posted by Ryan at 11:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 07, 2008

You Stay Classy, InterWebs




Posted by Ryan at 02:59 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

I give up

I just can't keep ahead of the spam. I've blocked countless IP addresses and deleted hundreds of comments, but still they wash in, wave after wave. It's not worth my effort any more. With over six years worth of posts, there's a smorgasbord of comment spam targets.

I don't honestly understand the reasoning behind comment spam, frankly. I don't quite see how it can in any way benefit the spammer. I mean, I'm sure there IS a way to profit/benefit from doing it, otherwise they wouldn't do it, but I'm generally at a loss as to how any benefit/profit is realized.

Then again, I suppose it is nearly a cost-free method for propagating a message/site, and eventually SOMEBODY will actually take the bait, although it would require several layers of hoops to go through to get to that point, but I can see how it's POSSIBLE.

Freakin' annoying though, that's for sure.

Posted by Ryan at 10:51 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

April 04, 2008

That was interesting

That last post seemed to actually be encouraging more of. . . the activity in question, so I've taken it down.

Posted by Ryan at 01:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 02, 2008

My Tenuous Brush With Mixed Martial Arts Fame

Tommy Speer fights tonight in his first UFC appearance since his December loss in the "The Ultimate Fighter" finale. Tom trains at the boxing gym where I do my Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu training. He's an animal, and he's been training like one in preparation for this fight.

Later this month, on April 11, Travis Wiuff will fight in the YAMMA Pit Fighting debut. Travis also trains at the 4th Street Boxing Gym.

Both men are large and strong, and I'd consider it a happy life goal to never be punched by either of them.

UPDATE: Crap. Speer got K.O.'ed.

Posted by Ryan at 02:30 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

April 01, 2008

Muppets Rule

Posted by Ryan at 02:41 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

It's Funny Because It's True

The Dirty Mushroom Will Kill Us All!


Posted by Ryan at 02:21 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


As much as I love the crazy-cool graphics and realistic sounds of today's video games, I'll always have a place in my heart for the classics.

Posted by Ryan at 02:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Doing a RickRoll does NOT constitute a clever April Fool's joke.

Also, a DuckRoll.


All your base are belong to us.

Ryan says: "Super Pii Pii Brothers promotes good bathroom skills and allows women to experience for the first time the pleasure of urinating while standing."

Caroline says: It really must be a pleasure

Ryan says: We men have been trying to keep the pleasure of urinating while standing a secret for thousands of years.

Ryan says: I wonder how you'd play the female version of the game. . .

Caroline says: Carefully

Ryan says: Oh, so now you're saying the male version is reckless?

Caroline says: Reckless Peeing!

Ryan says: Now THAT would make a great game.

Posted by Ryan at 10:41 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack
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