Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Quotes from Famous Authors (2 of 5): Margaret Atwood

"Being edited is like falling face down into a threshing machine," Margaret Atwood.

SIDEBAR: We learned from The Urban Dictionary last week that when a person takes a selfie of their shoes, it is called a ''shoefie.' We imagine it is popular with suburban narcissist women in places like Bethesda, Maryland, who want the whole world to see how they fit into their new Jimmy Choo high heels!


Quote of the Day: Famous Authors (1 of 5)

Alas, we did not get around to quoting authors of banned books during Banned Books Week last week. We know that Politics and Prose in Washington, D.C., and other book stores, such as Malaprop's Bookstore/Cafe in Asheville, NC, and the Boulder Bookstore in Boulder, Colo., probably took part as well.

There is also little doubt in our mind that many libraries and book shops banned D.H. Lawrence's erotic literary masterpiece "Young Lady's Chatterly," which has the distinction of being made into a cheesy sexplotation film that aired on late night cable in the 1980s and a highly respected French art film made just a few years ago.

Here is a quote from D.H. Lawrence:

"Never trust the artist. Trust the tale."




SIDEBAR: This week, we are also referencing new slang word we have learned from the web site for The Urban Dictionary; they will not teach you these words in an ESL class at Guilford Tech Community College in Greensboro, NC (nudge, nudge, wink, wink):

'Walks on both sides of the street,' this is how someone in a rural hamlet like Welch, WV, will refer to a person who is bisexual; conversely, we presume it's risky to be a bisexual in West Virginia!




Sunday, September 28, 2014

Top Comics from the Sunday Roanoke Times

Greetings to our blog readers in Italy, Belgium and France........

Here is our latest installment of the funniest comic strips in today's "Roanoke Times," which features comic strips for children (the usually boring "Family Circus"), hip Gen Xers such as myself ("Pearls Before" and........hmmmm..........ok, "Get Fuzzy" and lastly comic strips for old people at a nursing home in Troutville, Va. ("Pickles," "Hi and Lois," "Blondie," et al.....)....

Our top comic strip of the week is "Speed Bump" which shows what a prehistoric meteor drill may have been like, followed by "Get Fuzzy," this week the Siamese cat argued with the dog over a tennis ball, and "Dilbert" which asks the question what would you do if you were named Worst Employee of the Month (that strip is the reason for the image of a yellow and blue necktie, which are also the colors of the Turkish soccer team Fenerbahce; we personally root for their rivals Galatasaray).

Here is our list:

1) Speed Bump

2) Get Fuzzy

3) Dilbert

4) Pearls Before Swine

5) Agnes

6) Doonesbury

7) Funky Winkerbean

8) Zits

9) Non-Sequitur

10) Garfield





Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Sunday Comics Survey from The Washington Post: We Love WUMO

Greetings to our blog readers in Algeria, Serbia and Lithuania.

Today, we reveal our ten favorite comic strips from the Sunday edition of "The Washington Post," which came out on Sept. 21, 2014. The newspaper has an eclectic mix of comics, some of which are aimed at young demographics ("Reply All," "Knight Life"), some of which are aimed at folks over 50 ("Doonesbury"and "Sally Forth" ) and some of which are aimed at people who are 92 or older and living in a retire home in Bethesda, Md. ("Dennis the Menace," "Pickles").

The images above are of 1) the planet Mars which was the subject of a gag in "WUMO," 2) Mae West for "Sherman's Lagoon" since the strip was focused on Sherman's wife who is quite sardonic and 3) dragons in Varna, Bulgaria, for "Rhymes with Orange" as Hilary B. Price which had dragon ordering 'hero sandwiches' from a fast food place..........yes, we presume the hilarious strip will be misunderstood in Uzbekistan as well!

Here is the top ten:


2) Pearls Before Swine

3) Sherman's Lagoon

4) Rhymes with Orange

5) Judge Parker

6) Lio

7) Speed Bump

8) The Argyle Sweater

9) Dustin

10) Frazz


For our "Roanoke Times" comics survey, go to our sister blog: http://www.politicscultureandotherwastesoft.blogspot.com

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Today Marks Our Ninth Year of Blogging

Greetings to those of you in Dubai, Singapore and the Republic of Istanbul (forgive the Turkish-American humor).

Yes, we count only candles as well, but today marks the ninth anniversary of our very first blog entry on Sept. 21, 2005, on "Politics, Culture and Other Wastes of Time" http://www.politicscultureandotherwastesoft.blogspot.com

In 2005, Zappa the Family Cat was still a one-year-old kitten, it had only been four years since Sept. 11th, and gun wackos only had one Uzi per household.

We have frequently mentioned everything from George F. Will to Zippy the Pinhead and from H.R. Puff N Stuff to Alice Cooper as well as everything from Turkish soccer player Burak Yilmaz to Katarina Witt.

Hopefully, we will continue blogging (when we have time) for years to come even though blogging, which is a product of modern tech, might soon be nullified by modern tech as well....

Monday, September 15, 2014

Last Ten Films I've Seen: Mostly Netflix Week

Greetings to our blog readers in Sweden, Brazil and China.

Why do we have images of a map of Italy, the Athens, Ga., indie rock icons REM, and photo of a grizzly bear chasing a salmon in Alaska? They all relate to the last ten films I've seen; it should be pointed out that one of the films "The One I Love" shares its name with a song by REM, hence the reason why we have an image of the band fronted by Michael Stipe that was one of the best during the 1980s.

All of these films, except "The Trip to Italy" and "The One I Love," which were both showing at the local art house cinema, where viewed either through Netflix or Netflix streaming; two of the films, "A Trip to Italy" and "What Maisie Knew" feature English actor Steve Coogan:

1) "Point Blank." France. 2010. Dir: Fred Cavaye (no connection to Lee Marvin film with the same name)

2) The Trip to Italy. 2014. Dir: Michael Winterbottom.

3) "The One I Love" 2014. Dir: Charlie McDowell w/Elisabeth Moss from "Mad Men."

4) Grizzly. 1976. Dir: William Girdler (yes, it is a guilty pleasure film)

5) "Passion" 2012. Dir: Brian De Palma (remake of the French film "Love Crime")

6) Trance. 2013. Dir: Danny Boyle (Films features a very nude Rosario Dawson!)

7) What Maisie Knew. 2012. Dir: Scott McGhee, et al.

8) The King of Thieves. Slovakia (in German). 2004. Dir: Ivan Fila

9) "Paradise: Faith" Austria. 2012. Dir: Ulrich Seidl (first film in a triology)

10) Buddy. Norway. 2003. Dir: Mortem Tyldum



Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Tweets from Around the Crazy Galaxy: Reactions to the Brutal Execution of American Journalist

As the late Peter Finch declared in Sidney Lumet's film "Netword" (1976): "I am mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it any more." With the beheading of American journalists Steven Scotloff and James Foley by the terrorist group ISIS or ISIL, it seems everyone is chiming in about what America should do next with regards to what has become a very messy, tense situation in Syria and Iraq.

Here are some tweets from the right, the left and the center as well as views from Muslims and non-Muslims. These are not necessarily views with agree with, especially the supposed right-winger who is cheering remarks by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas). Though we would like to see justice brought forward, we are not inclined to endorse the most right-wing American senator in decades:

1) Stephen Bright: "1.6 billion Muslims Worldwide per CNN. Why aren't they taking a stand against these extremist group misrepresenting their religion?"

2) New Jersey Hockey: "I like Sen. Ted Cruz's response to the second U.S. beheading in as many weeks: 'Let's Bomb ISIS back to the Stone Age."

3) Slate:"Obama now says the U.S. will 'destroy' ISIS. What does that mean exactly?"

4) Laila Lalami: "WANTED. Fox News experts on Islam. No prior training or experience necessary. Frequent references to sharia and Kenyan socialism a must."

5) Arsalan Iftikhar (The Muslim Guy): "The terrorist group ISIS just killed (and beheaded) my Facebook friend (and American journalist) Steven Sotloff.....ISIS are the dogs of hell."

6) Miami News Now: "To the end, journalist Steven Sotloff kept Jewish identity secret from Islamic state captors."

7) The New Republic: Steven Sotloff was just 31 years old_ a journalist only embarking on what should have been a long career.



Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Turkish Soccer Scoreboard: Galatasaray Wins the Battle of Our Favorite Turkish Teams

Greetings to our blog readers in Hungary, Kuwait and Japan as well as of course Turkey and here in the United States.

Ironically, none of three Turkish nationals who also play in the Turkish Premiere League are from the traditional Istanbul powerhouse Galatasaray, the lone Turkish team in the UEFA Champions League. On Saturday, Galatasary, my personal favorite team (I am a Turkish-American) defeated my second favorite Turkish team Bursaspor 2-0 with goals from Burak Yilmaz (52m) and Olcan Adin (90m). This was also Bursapor's first domestic game without the team's long-standing star player Pablo Battalla who now plays for Beijing Guoan in China.

For Gaziantepspor, located in southwest Turkey, the young rising star Muhammet Demir (pictured top) scored two goals in the 72nd and 78th minutes for the team's 2-1 win over Sivasspor.

In another clash of mid-level teams, Eskisehirspor from the western city of Eskisehir, the hometown of Cuneyt Arkin, a Turkish matinee idol from the '70s, got goals from Hurriyet Gucer (pict. bottom) in the 65th minute and Erkan Zengin, a Swedish national of Turkish heritage, who kicked in the game-winning goal in the 76th minute.

Cenk Tosun (43rd min) delivered the only goal for Istanbul powerhouse Besiktas, which was recently eliminated from the Champions League by Arsenal, but BJK will now play in the Europa League. BJK beat Mersin 1-0.

Lastly, it was alas not a good weekend for Rajko Rotman, a Slovenian national, who plays for Basakdemir; he got a red card for his Istanbul team Basaksehir, but the team managed to still get a 1-1 draw with cross-town rival Kasimpasa.

Here are the soccer scores from weekend play in Turkey:

Bursaspor 0 Galatasaray 2

Mersin 0 Besiktas 1

Fenerbahce 3 Karademir Karabuk 2

Kayseri Erciyes 0 Trabszonspor 0, tie

Sivasspor 1 Gazinantepspor 2

Eskisehirspor 2 Konyaspor 1

Rizespor 1 Ankara GB 1, tie

Balikesirspor 1 Akhisar GS 2

Basaksehir 1 Kasimpasa 1, tie

Link to Ahmet Bob Turgut's blog on Turkish soccer:


Monday, September 1, 2014

The Sunday Roanoke Times Comics Survey: The March of the Penguins

Greetings to our blog readers in Israel, Egypt and Poland.

The comic strip "Arctic Circle" would have been our top comic strip of the week, but we saw it on the Internet. But, we certainly hope the comic strip which on Sunday took a hilarious dig towards global warming deniers gets more newspapers.

In the mean time, we are focusing on the circa 21 comic strips that run in the Sunday edition of "The Roanoke Times," the daily newspaper in Roanoke, Va. This week, our three favorite comic strips focused on a penguin wearing Jimmy Choo high heels ("Speed Bump"), an over-the-top unicorn gag ("Pearls Before Swine") and an office place spat over how to be successful ("Dilbert").

The third place finish for "Dilbert" is our highest ranking ever for Scott Adams' comic strip; the Sticky Notes are one of our features in its honor.

Here is the top ten:

1) Speed Bump

2) Pearls Before Swine

3) Dilbert

4) Doonesbury

5) Non-Sequitur

6) Agnes

7) Zits

8) Get Fuzzy

9) Garfield

10) Funky Winkerbean