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Tom Toles for June 23, 2010

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    aardvarkseyes  over 11 years ago

    And, the great thing about using his trunk is that it grows every time he speaks!

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    cdward  over 11 years ago

    Louder and louder.

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    tomcib  over 11 years ago

    Have you ever been sitting in front of someone blowing on a vuvuzela? After about 5 minutes spit starts to rain out the end. Not very pleasant. About the same as using the trunk. Only the color is different. YUCK!!!!

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    Bilword  over 11 years ago

    good one from Toles

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    Jaedabee Premium Member over 11 years ago

    Combined with the Right Wing Echo Chamber the results are powerful!

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    Simon_Jester  over 11 years ago

    I keep waitng for one of the righties here to blame the creation of the vuvuzela on President Obama.

    “Vuvuzela sounds almost like Venezuela, and Bozotus hangs out with Hugo Chavez.. So it’s obviously ALL his fault!”

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    Motivemagus  over 11 years ago

    Simon, the righties must all be watching real Amurrican games like OUR football. God forbid they should watch the World Cup, which is obviously run by socialists and One-World conspirators…

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    starguy  over 11 years ago

    I had the choice of watching a bunch of guys wearing shorts running up and down a grass field for 90 minutes and ending in a 1-0 score, or watching paint dry. I took the paint, although watching iron rust, or watching grass grow were strong contenders.

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    fritzoid Premium Member over 11 years ago

    Nobody is obliged to watch soccer, starguy, but those who proudly proclaim their refusal to do so come off as incredibly small-minded, like those who proudly announce they haven’t opened a book since High School. Much of the rest of the world considers our “football” to be pointless: too much padding, too much stop-and-go, too many pituitary monsters on the field, and of course feet hardly ever contact the ball.

    The sports you enjoy are largely the ones you grew up watching and/or playing. There’s no “better” or “worse”, just “different”. If 90% of the world likes something that you don’t like, they probably see qualities in it that you don’t. (Likewise, if only 10% of the population enjoys something you don’t enjoy, they probably see qualities you don’t. De gustibus non disputandum.)

    (I’m not immune to such attitudes myself; I find it hard to believe that anybody actually likes listening to Jazz.)

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    zev.farkas  over 11 years ago

    @ Tom Ciborowski -

    ewwww…. thanks for the warning! maybe next World Cup’s model will come with a spit valve?

    I’m not a big sports fan, but when soccer is on the TV or radio I find myself wondering - “what is that annoying buzzing sound?”

    @fritzoid - I like jazz. but there are other genres that help me understand how you feel…

    i guess each generation has to come up with something to upset their elders… :)

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    fritzoid Premium Member over 11 years ago

    For me, fennec, it doesn’t depend on the Jazz. At least with anything beyond the earliest varieties, when it first split from melody.

    What’s the difference between a Blues club and a Jazz club? The Blues club has a guy playing three chords for an audience of a hundred. The Jazz club has a guy playing a hundred chords for an audience of three.

    (Actually, there’s one Jazz piece I really truly like: Vince Guaraldi’s “Linus and Lucy.”)

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    Motivemagus  over 11 years ago

    How about Dixieland Jazz, fritz? I’m not a jazz fan, either, but I like that. It does have more melody (and less ego) involved. On football…For a while in the UK they showed American football and even came up with their own teams (they called it “Gridiron,” which isn’t bad). But what they did was take taped NFL games, cut out ALL the delays, commercial breaks, timeouts, etc., etc., etc., and turned it into an hour of solid action. I don’t even like football and I think I’d like that.

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    dwnoname  over 11 years ago

    makes more sense

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    Jaedabee Premium Member over 11 years ago

    “I had the choice of watching a bunch of guys wearing shorts running up and down a grass field for 90 minutes and ending in a 1-0 score, or watching paint dry.”

    I agree. Watching a bunch of guys in tights crawling all over each other and pitching balls between their legs is totally less-gay. And to be even less-less-gay, one needs to have a bunch of greased up guys (in fact, we could use some of that Gulf oil instead!) in speedos talking about how some guy stole their championship belt and how that made them feel emotionally only for them to run around a ring and “wrestle” with one another. Yeah, that’s like the least-gay thing you can do.
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    lonecat  over 11 years ago

    Show me the melody in, say, the first prelude in Bach’s Well Tempered Klavier. What counts as melody differs from time to time, even from composer to composer, even from piece to piece. If you can’t hear the melody in, say, early Miles Davis, or Django, you just aren’t listening. There’s just as much melody in Charlie Parker, it just goes by faster. He has fast fingers, you’ve got to have equally fast ears.

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    fritzoid Premium Member over 11 years ago

    I’m openly admitting that my dislike of Jazz is personal, even as it’s deeply rooted. And don’t tell me “you need to listen to more” or “you’ve been listening to the wrong stuff.” I’ve been exposed to plenty of it, and I find it grating. “Split from melody” was a poor choice of words, though. I’ll also admit to a bias against any music that doesn’t have lyrics (including instrumental rock ‘n’ roll), or lyrics in a language I don’t understand. I don’t like poetry, I don’t like instrumental music, but put ‘em together into a song and I’ll at least give it a listen.

    But any defenses of Jazz sound to me like Mark Twain’s defense of Richard Wagner: “Wagner’s music is actually much better than it sounds.”

    I say it’s spinach, and I say to hell with it.

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    lonecat  over 11 years ago

    Twain’s comment is as brilliant as it is outrageous. If it weren’t outrageous it wouldn’t be so brilliant. But he has touched on something true – the theoretical importance of Wagner is indisputable, but that doesn’t mean you have to like the music. Same with Schoenberg.

    I could go on and on about this – and particularly about ear training and the equivalent of ear training in other areas, linked to the concept of common sense in Kant’s third critique – but maybe another time.

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    Gladius  over 11 years ago

    Oh hell, PLEASE don’t mention Schoenberg. I guess I can understand it if you are into math but I still get the shudders. I had to do some “modern” chamber music once and he still gives me nightmares.

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    fritzoid Premium Member over 11 years ago

    I’ve also had people try to teach me to discern between good and bad Scotch, and good and bad Champagne*. It’s been fruitless. The “best” Scotch is still unpalatable to me, and even the “worst” Champagne makes me happy.

    *I don’t mean to imply that I can’t discern between Scotch and Champagne.

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    SuperGriz  over 11 years ago

    Today’ Toles’ funny today!!!!!

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/tomtoles/?nid=roll_toonsvid

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    lonecat  over 11 years ago

    I don’t like all of Schoenberg, but I love Verklarte Nacht and the Gurre-Lieder and Pierrot Lunaire. I’m still working on the dodecaphonic stuff.

    It’s fascinating to me that we still have difficulty with this “modern” music that is now a hundred years old. I wonder if that’s happened before in art history, that a style has remained largely incomprehensible for a hundred years. Beethoven was shocking at first, but only for a few years. Likewise most other revolutionary figures in music – and in art and in literature. Hmm.

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    Gladius  over 11 years ago

    (Chuckle) I did put modern in quotes for a reason. However, I hate Shoenberg for himself, having had to perfom his work. Now, I love Stravinski. One of my favorite times was being part of an orchestra that did the Rite of Spring. It’s a shame I never got to be part of a Firebird performance,

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    lonecat  over 11 years ago

    ^ What do you play? I’ve never played Schoenberg, though I have played my share of twentieth century music. I don’t have a lot of time to play these days – working for a living really gets in the way – but I tend to play Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, and Brahms for fun. Pretty conservative. But I listen more widely than I play.

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    Gladius  over 11 years ago

    lonecat, I prefer to withold my instrument, for personal privacy reasons, but you can guess it’s not a violin. :)

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    wonderwhy  over 11 years ago

    Wonder why you don’t indicate which Schoenberg works you are familiar with? Or performed? You might want to listen to more works.

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    Gladius  over 11 years ago

    This is a public board. There are limits to what I’m willing to give out. Public performances are one of the things I won’t put here.

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    wonderwhy  over 11 years ago

    You mentioned that you “hate Schoenberg” and implied that his music has more to do with “Math” than other composers. I wonder why you would not want to explain why you make those statements by indicating with which works of Schoenberg you are familiar.

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    Herbabee  over 11 years ago

    abbreviated reactive response to all above:

    Thelonious. Sphere. Monk. (Miles too, for that matter)

    Transfigured. Night.

    Rhythmic. Gymnastics.

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    lonecat  over 11 years ago

    I really really like early Schoenberg. I think the pieces I mentioned show that he was a great composer. I figure that it’s worth some effort to figure out how a great composer decided to write music that I find very difficult. Maybe if I spend some time with the music I will learn something from him. That doesn’t mean I should pretend to like pieces that I don’t like.

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