Tuesday, May 1, 2012

New Website!

Holy mackerel! I bet you are wondering where the LOLZ are! We are now officially being funny at our newly redesigned webpage. There are so many great things on the horizon there that you better head over now:

Please update your links and bookmarks, and stay posted for excited news and updates, along with our usual charming insight into whatever tickles our fancy. We won't be posting here anymore, but we are keeping this site around so people can browse our archives.

Friday, April 27, 2012

.. - .----. ... / -- --- .-. ... . / -.-. --- -.. . / -.. .- -.-- (Translation: It's Morse Code Day)

.... .. / - .... . .-. . .-.-.- / .. ..-. / -.-- --- ..- .----. .-. . / - .-. .- -. ... .-.. .- - .. -. --. / - .... .. ... --..-- / -.-. --- -. --. .-. .- - ..- .-.. .- - .. --- -. ... .-.-.- / -.-- --- ..- / .- .-. . / -- -.-- / -. . .-- / -... . ... - / ..-. .-. .. . -. -.. .-.-.- / -.-- --- ..- / .- .-. . / .- .-- . ... --- -- . / .- -. -.. / -.-. --- -- .--. .-.. . - . .-.. -.-- / ... .--. . -.-. .. .- .-.. / .- -. -.. / .. / .-.. --- ...- . / -.-- --- ..- .-.-.- / .. .----. -- / ... ..- .--. . .-. / ... . .-. .. --- ..- ... .-.-.- / -.-- --- ..- / .- .-. . / - .... . / -... . ... - / - .... .. -. --. / . ...- . .-. / .- -. -.. / -.. --- -. .----. - / .-.. . - / .- -. -.-- --- -. . / - . .-.. .-.. / -.-- --- ..- / -.. .. ..-. ..-. . .-. . -. - .-.. -.-- .-.-.- / .. ..-. / .. / .... .- -.. / .- / ..- -. .. -.-. --- .-. -. --..-- / .. .----. -.. / - --- - .- .-.. .-.. -.-- / .-.. . - / -.-- --- ..- / .--. . - / .. - .-.-.- / -.-. .... ..- -.-. -.- / -. --- .-. .-. .. ... / - .... .. -. -.- ... / -.-- --- ..- .----. .-. . / .- .-- . ... --- -- . / - --- --- --..-- / .- -. -.. / -.-. .... ..- -.-. -.- / -. --- .-. .-. .. ... / .. ... / .- / .... .- .-. -.. / -- .- -. / - --- / .. -- .--. .-. . ... ... .-.-.-

'My name is Morris and I cannot lie, you other telegrapher's can't deny'
Today is Morse Code Day, in honor of Samuel Morse. In 1835, he proved that signals could be transmitted by wire. FACT: the first telegraph message was 'What hath God wrought', which was sent from the Supreme Court chamber all the way to a railway depot in Baltimore on May 24, 1844. This was a communication break though. No longer did people have to wait months for the family gossip from their cousins in California. This was like going from dial-up to wi-fi (Do you even remember dial-up? Did I just date myself? Ah, nuts.)
SOS. Remember this. It could save your life.
Morse code is pretty popular among amateur radio operators. An advantage of Morse code for transmitting over radio waves is that it is able to be received over poor signal conditions that would make voice communications impossible. Pilots, airtraffic controllers, naval ships all use morse code. Pittsburgh got into the act, flashing 'PITTSBURGH' in red neon on top of the Grant building ever since 1929. However, at some point (and no one knows when) a few typos slipped in... which was noticed in 2009! Who knows how long we we actually flashing 'PITETSBKRRH'! AND THEN, only a few days later, it was flashing 'TPEBTSAURGH'! I don't know what it's flashing now, I'm too afraid to look! Way to go, Pittsburgh. Way. To. Go. *Sigh*

Did you translate the code at the top of the blog? Translate the coded message with this! or if you're lazy, use this. (Though if you're lazy, the contents of the message doesn't apply to you... sorry, but them's the breaks)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Hank Azaria!

Not too long ago I wrote a blog celebrating William H. Macy’s birthday, and I said something along the lines of “The first movie I saw Macy in I didn’t even recognize him: Mystery Men." Well, today is Hank Azaria’s Birthday, and I can say the very same thing about him. He played the inimitable Blue Raja, the man who threw forks. All in all, I really want to watch Mystery Men again.

Of course, before I ever saw Hank Azaria, I knew his voice, just like we all do. His is the voice of Moe Syzlack, Chief Wiggum, Apu, and at least a dozen more characters, recurring and one-offs, from The Simpsons. Believe it or not, before working with the Simpsons, Azaria had only done one voice-over job; it just so happened that the casting director for the Simpsons had seen the work and invited him to audition. For the first year on the show, Azaria was hired by the week, and was continually convinced that he had not done a good job and wouldn't be called back. Ha!
It's somehow wonderful to me that nearly anyone aged 12 to 80 has heard Hank Azaria's voice but would most likely be unable to pick him out of a line-up. Being famous for voice acting is a lovely sort of anti-fame, specifically in this lovely celebrity culture where everyone, even the ugly movie stars, and beautiful. The irony of course is that Azaria's kinda cute.

Many of Azaria's voices for the Simpsons voices are based on real people. Moe is a "more gravely" version of Al Pacino in Dog Day Afternoon. Apu, shockingly, is based off of a slew of Indian and Pakistani convenience store clerks in Hollywood. Chief Wiggum is a spoof of Edward G. Robinson (Key Largo, Double Indemnity, and more.) Lou the Cop is Sylvester Stallone. Comic Book Guy is actually based off a real (non-actor) person, a neighbor of Azaria's in college -- which explains Comic Book Guy's painful believability. Dr. Nick (Hi!) is "a bad Ricky Ricardo" impression. And Frank Grimes (shit's about to come full circle) is based off William H. Macy.
And Now for some Hank Azaria Fun Facts:

1. Azaria auditioned for the role of Joey Tribbiani. (He did eventually land a role on Friends, that of the adorably geeky Dr. David)
2. Azaria was weirdly muscular in Along Came Polly (yes, I have seen Along Came Polly)
This image disturbs me.

3. Azaria was the butler in The Birdcage! For serious!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Grab your popcorn - it's Movie Theater Day!

The sound of kernels being popped, the candy, the bright lights, the posters, the over-priced concession products. Yes, it's the movie theater!

Going to the movies has always been a kind of magical experience for me. Being able to put everything on hold for two hours while letting a suspension of disbelief take me anywhere from Middle Earth to A Galaxy Far, Far Away, is for me, the ultimate, kick-ass storytelling experience. That is unless you get a totally stinker of a movie. I know what you're thinking, "How can I prevent such a catastrophe from happening?". Keep calm. It just so happens that there are books that can help you! Did I say books? I did. Turns out there are books about movies, and they can help you decide what movies will change your life forever, and which movies will cause your eyes to bleed. Since there's a lot of middle ground between those two things you'd better pick up the book.

Turns out books and movies go together way more then I thought. Surprised? As was I. Not only are some movies based on popular books cough* The Hunger Games, Drive, Twilight, Eragon cough*. Some books are even about a movie that was based on book. After you re-read that last sentence and wrap your brain around it let me show you what I mean. For instance...

Harry Potter reminds me of yet another great part about going to the theater to see a movie. If it's popular enough, you get to see the hard-core fans donning their character costumes. These people make living worth it. But where would one acquire such articles of clothing? Look no further.

Sure, people in costume are fun to look at, but it's not the most eye-catching spectacle at a movie theater. That title is going to have to go the movie poster. Again, I'm a total sucker for movie posters and have spent more money acquiring them then I'd like to think about. Worth it? Probably not. Does it make my room look cool? Absolutely. Does it get me laid? So far no, but maybe the right girl hasn't seen them yet. Ladies.....

It's actually quite amazing how movie posters have evolved over the years. What's that? We have a book on movie posters! You've gotta be kidding me.

What's left to say about movie theater? Only the best part of a movie. The trailers. I don't know about you but I hate being late for a movie because I love watching the trailers. It's every one's opportunity to see what comes next, then instantly turn to your friend and make snide comments. And just to save you some time here's a trailer that covers all the bases.

I'm going to see a movie today and you should to! So grab your credit card (you'll need it), buy some popcorn, turn off your cell phone, sit back and enjoy the show.

Monday, April 23, 2012

canker blossoms get ye tongue in order - it's talk like Shakespeare day!

It hath been proclaimed! Today, cousins, is talk like Shakespeare day

Whether you're actually a fan of old Willy the bard or you know how to add "eth" to the end of all your verbs and call it "old english" today can be a fun day for you. Who doesn't want to flounce around saying things in a fake British accent and pulling out words that you think sound old and throwing them around! Without you even knowing it, you probably talk like Shakespeare to an extent every day of your life
Dead as a door nail
As luck would have it
Fight fire with fire
Fancy free
In a pickle

All stuff that guy said !
Then there are some movies that you love and watch over and over again that talk like Shakespeare if you need some inspiration today. 

Based on the Taming of the Shrew. They don't talk like Shakespeare all the time but they throw some good lines in there.

Romeo + Juliet

What's better than Leo, Claire Danes and John Leguizamo all speaking like Shakespeare plus lots of neon, gun fights, drugs and pool makeout scenes? THE ANSWER IS NOTHING. There is nothing better. Watch this right now if you haven't.

We have 8 billion Shakespeare related products. 
Most of them filthy. 

One of the best parts about talk like Shakespeare day is that homeboy was filthy and mean. 
He made up some of the harshest most creative insults and talked about sex in every way imaginable. 
Walk up to someone and ask them to make the beast with two backs with you and see if they get it. 
If not, at least you get it. And really amusing ourselves is the whole point in life. 

Play with your Shakespeare action figure! 

Not only is this the truest. It is also in tshirt form. 

Start your day by learning lots and lots of ways to insult people in ways they won't understand. It's like like cursing someone in another language. Only this is better because you'll feel even smarter and it's in english and nothing is better than insulting someone AND confusing them with their own language! 

In addition to being dirrty and witty as all hell, our pal Willy was also quite the romantic. He kind of wrote THE definitive love story that almost everything is based on. Good job, Shakespeare way to make the rest of us look bad. 

"Arthur Phillips’s father is a two-bit forger and con artist, but, still, when he claims to have discovered a lost Shakespeare play, Arthur believes him. At first."


Shakespeare magnetic finger puppets are all the rage! Walk around with this guy on your finger all day while you're talking like Shakespeare and you can get a free ride to that padded room you've always wanted !

Would we be Kards Unlimited without our share of Shakespeare related cards?
No we would just be called Kards. Because we wouldn't be unlimited. 
Or even worse. We might just be called "Cards". With a C. 
I shudder at the thought! 

So go out today and get your Shakespeare on! 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Happy Birthday Vladimir Nabokov

What's Russian for "Momma Like?"

I can't even begin to find the right words to describe Vladimir Nabokov. Visionary? Certainly. Master linguist? Most obviously. Poet? Quite. SEX GOD?!...Oh. Yes, that seems appropriate. Nabokov has written some of the most amazing, erotic, mind-numbing works of modern literature. He had the uncanny ability to express himself in words that seem just out of reach for the average thinker. 

He had an intense way with words, he could paint a picture on a page, never saying too much or too little. He was gifted with the ability to present readers with a sense of understanding about even the most complex of ideas and emotions. 

My favorite Nabokov quote is his description of the Russian word Toska, which numerous intellectuals have said is an indescribable, untranslatable word. But don't panic! Nothing is impossible for my sweet sweet Vladimir... 
Toska of my soullllll
"No single word in English renders all the shades of Toska. At its deepest and most painful, it is a sensation of great spiritual anguish, often without any specific cause. At less morbid levels it is a dull ache of the soul, a longing with nothing to long for, a sick pining, a vague restlessness, mental throes, yearning. In particular cases it may be the desire for somebody or something specific, nostalgia, love-sickness. At the lowest level it grades into ennui, boredom." Nobody has described the inner workings of my brain so perfectly before. The first time I saw this quote I fell into a deep deep Nabokov kick. I think I read almost all of his books in a five month period. Here are my favorites:

This book is Toska reincarnate. It will change the way you think, the way you view yourself. Its my favorite for obvious reasons. I once stumbled on an old copy in some dinky garage sale when I was 12. Bought it because it had my name on it and never read it until two years ago. THEN MY LIFE CHANGED, as will yours. 
Speak, Memory
Oh so you're curious about my sweet Vladimir? Want to know more about the man who mesmerized butterflies and literary critics alike? This amazing book details Nabokovs life from his early childhood in pre-revolutionary Russia to his college years. 

 The most guilt-inducing, erotic-but-wrong, book you will read. Humbert Humbert is in love with a girl, and shes the prime ripe age of 12. Dolores Haze doesn't know she's seducing Hubert, she doesn't know with every girlish laugh and wide eyed grin, how Hubert's love grows and grows. 

Oh my sweet Vladimir. I love you dearly for your passionate obsession with butterflies and our shared Synesthesia . I love you for being Russian and understanding the depths of sorrow and its close relative, boredom. You were amazing in everything you did from writing to Chess algorithms. 

Happy Birthday Vladimir Nabokov you outstanding son-of-a-bitch. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Holidaze- it's 420 captain! Get on this spaceship!

"What's this 4/20?" my grandmother asked me in her innocent, grandmotherly way. I pondered a moment, wondering how one explains to their grandmother, a counterculture holiday dedicated to celebrating and consuming marijuana. So, I just told her.

...and gave her a joint

"Isn't that illegal?" she questions. The simple answer is yes.
In the eyes of the law aka "The Man", marijuana is indeed deemed illegal. Although in the last two decades the sticky green bud (marijuana), has infiltrated it's way to an almost social norm status. It's not at all uncommon to see weed related products such as books, posters, tins, candles, or even a marijuana leaf plush named Highdy, sold in stores (like ours, wink wink) all over the place!

What is Highdy stuffed with you ask? Come in and find out!

Woah, I just had a G-R-E-A-T idea. What if like, in heaven, everyone gets a bat-mobile! Would that mean that God is a socialist? Did you ever notice the word bed looks like a friggin' bed?! Am I off topic? Do I have a bong? Is it's name the syndicate? What's with all the questions? Did you hear that? We really need to keep it down. Are my eyes red? What was I doing? Blogging, right, blogging!

classic stoners
So, as many of my fellow employees know I'm a big movie fan. Big meaning I go to school and study movies (Yes, you can actually go to school for that). So usually on April 20th I like to watch some of my favorite stoner films with my favorite stoner characters. You want to know who they are!? Well, there are dozens of great stoner movies out there, but my top three recommendations, "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas", because nothing will blow your baked mind out of the water like a drug induced tale generated from the mind of Hunter S. Thompson. "The Big Lebowski", the Dude, he abides. Finally, because I feel obligated, any of the "Cheech and Chong" movies, because they're the classic stoners. However, if you're jonesing for more reefer flicks you should check out a book I was very excited to find in our store. "Reefer Movie Madness: The Ultimate Stoner Film Guide". Yeah, It's exactly what it says it is and it's awesome.

more where this came from

If you're still looking for activities to perform during this joyous holiday you could always BAKE yourself a treat. Why did I capitalize the word bake you ask? Because you can bake your pot right into a delicious baked good treat. So when you get the munchies you can satisfy your hunger with a chocolate brownie and keep your 4/20 going strong by ingesting more mary jane. I know, my head almost exploded too. It's like some kind of crazy stoner paradox.

Side note: I've been sitting here with my dog for a while and I'm pretty sure it can read my thoughts. Or maybe my thoughts just think my dog can read them.

He knows where I keep my stash. 

So I need to get one of these awesome tins since that plastic bag is a little more conspicuous than I would hope. Because if it says marijuana or weed on it it's like reverse psychology and no one will think there's actually weed in it! Right? Unless they reverse my reverse psychology.

Back on track. For those of you who dig poetry I dug up (see what I did there with dig and dug, pretty cool, right?) a poem about 4/20. Dr. Seuss would be proud.

I was asleep in my bed, and then I awoke
I looked at the date, today I will toke.
I snatched up my pipe, and grabbed all my tree,
Then I got dressed and found my car key.
I drove to the park,
sat alone in the dark,
and now I can't lie.
I'm utterly high.

Okay, so it's not Robert Frost, but have a happy 4/20, and don't bogart that joint. Just remember in the words of Mr. Matthew McConaughey if you don't have a joint "You'd be cooler if you did".