Wednesday, May 28, 2003

I, Robot, Am Dead

This will be the last entry to Rusty's Ranting Robot. I will not delete the blog, but I'm not linking it from my site, and no one will be allowed to further contribute. I feel that the following lyrics to the song "Jed the Humanoid" by Grandaddy will explain why the robot is dead.

Last night something pretty bad happened.
We lost a friend.
All shocked and broken.
Shut down exploded.

Jeddy 3 is what we first called him.
Then it was Jed.
But Jed's system's dead.
Therefore so is Jed.

We assembled him in the kitchen.
Made out of this and
Made out of that and
Whatever was at hand.

When we finished Jed we were so proud.
We celebrated,
We congratulated,
At what we'd created.

Jed could run or walk or sing or talk and
Compile thoughts and
Solve lots of problems.
We learned so much from him.

A couple years went by and something happened.
We gave Jed less attention.
We had new inventions.
We left for a convention.

Jed had found our booze and drank every drop.
He fizzled and popped.
He rattled and knocked.
And finally he just stopped.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

We Aren't the Robots

I'm considering destroying the robot. Anyone think this is a bad idea?

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

Publish or Perish in the Fiery Pits of Regret and Confusion

Tommy and I were talking last night about how we could make a million dollars if we changed the lyrics of Hank Williams Jr.'s "A Country Boy Can Survive" to "America Can Survive" and other appropriately-topical lines, and then Tommy turns on CMT tonight and Hank has already done it, playing to a screaming crowd, singing all the lyrics we came up with.

"Someone keeps repeating what I said one million years before it's said. It doesn't make me feel good."

Liam Lynch, the guy from Sifl and Olly (the sockpuppets, remember?) released a record last month. He included an hour and a half DVD with it. On the DVD, he turned to me and said, "I'm making all this stuff at home. I don't want to sound like everybody else's crap, so I'm just doing it myself. So I want to let you know, since you probably make stuff yourself, that you can do that and people will put it out for you." He told me that, honest. You can watch the DVD yourself and he will tell you too. If you make stuff. If you don't, maybe that part of the DVD won't show up.

It made me both inspired and depressed.

With a little extra initiative, I'm sure we could be living in a world where 'nikcuS is considered "influential" and "seminal." I'll try harder in the future, ladies and gentlemen.

Russell.

Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Taco-Flavored Kisses

My psychic link with the South Parketeers is two weeks in a row now, since I've always been personally offended by that "Jenny from the Block" song. There's no excuse for making that song. She deserves a lot worse than they gave her on the show.

Sunday, April 13, 2003

Rusty the Psychic / Rusty Just Agrees with Jason Again

Ding dong, the witch is dead anyone?

I noted the South Park thing. The best song, of course, from that episode was Cartmans "Cause I hate Stan and Kyle... I really hate those guys..."

I also noted the Daily Show thing. I meant to write his quote here (since I'd taped it--it saves me having to sit through ten minutes of commercials to just watch it after it's over... which is what I'm doing for most of my shows--I'm my own Tivo). I felt psychic again when he said that after I'd commented, since it was the perfect representation of that balance that I love.

I suppose this isn't an entirely new thing to hate, but I really do hate when people can easily just pick their "sides" because they already know which side they're on and what the rules for that side are: this goes beyond politics, of course, and extends to clothes to wear, wallpaper to hang, books to read, music to listen to, cars to buy, etc. etc. etc. Just kind of a dull way to live, believing there are things to do and not do based on some little group you want to be in.

Back in the days of manual windows, I was a lot faster at rolling them down than the electric kinds are. I kind of like the one-time push-to-slide-down feature, but when I have to actually hold the button and wait for it to slide up, it's an impatient agony. "Jeez, take one and one half seconds, why don't you?"

Saturday, April 12, 2003

War. Hunh. Good god, y'all. What is it good for? Absolutely nothing... except maybe for stopping evil genocidal dictators who torture and murder lots and lots of innocent people.

(Disclaimer: Yes, I do realize that the current situation and the real reasons and events leading up to it are far more complicated and morally, politically, and legally controversial than that. I just couldn't resist the joke, given the topic of the discussion and my cynical nature.)

That "Have You Forgotten" song made me genuinely confused. I was like, "What the hell kind of anti-war protestors has this guy been listening to? He's responding to nonsensical arguments that people aren't even making..."

Rusty, you must be psychic or something, seeing as how the whole lame-pro-war-country-songs vs. lame-anti-war-rock-songs thing got brought up on South Park the next day.

Agreed on your point about The Daily Show. I liked that bit Jon Stewart said the other night: something along the lines of how if you can't feel the least bit happy that the Iraqi regime is no longer opressing the people, you're hopelessly lost to the extreme left, and if you can't understand that it's bad that it had to come about through war, you're hopelessly lost to the extreme right.

And on a more non-serious note...

You know what I wish someone would invent? I wish there were some kind of method for manually raising and lowering the windows in a car. For all those inevitable times when the electric motors or wiring or window switches stop working, which almost always seems to happen on the front driver's side door. If only they could start putting devices like that in new cars, that'd be great. Someone should try to figure out how to make that work. Maybe that guy who created the Segway scooter is smart enough to think of a way.

Tuesday, April 08, 2003

I'm All War Out

Rusty had a good time too. It's fun to lose at Acquire, too, though I usually don't learn that, since I rock the Aquire boat.

What, our government has done something? Really, though, the main thing to talk about in a time of war is... war songs:

I've heard a handful of these, both pro and anti war. For the most part, I think they all suck and that both sides are incredibly naive. All of the pro war songs I've heard are country songs. Garth Brooks has one called "Iraq and Roll." The best (worst?) one is the "Have You Forgotten?" song where he says "I haven't forgot Bin Laden," as if he has anything to do with this at all. But then you get crap like Lenny Kravitz for the anti side (something to the effect of "I want peace" said twenty times in a row), and that's possibly even more horrible.

The thing is this: Most war songs favor the message over what should be a key ingredient, that these are still songs and should be good. Anyone who says "You have to listen to the words to like the song" is missing the point of a song. If someone writing a war song isn't concerned with the goodness of their song, then they should write a poem--or better, an essay. If the argument is that people will hear the radio and that's how their anti/pro war message gets across to the masses, then it's even more important that the song be good.

I heard the new R.E.M. protest song (called "The Final Straw," which is available on their website) and they seem to be a nice exception here. The song isn't the greatest R.E.M. song ever, but it's not a bad song. In fact, it's even better than a war song because it doesn't make any specific references. In fact, if you didn't know any better, you might not know it's a war song at all--which is a plus... certainly in terms of lastability. R.E.M.'s always been pretty good about this, about making good political songs, songs which surpass the time/event they are singing about and go on to be classic in their own rights. Bob Dylan did a few of these (but he had some duds too).

(R.E.M., by the way, is coming to Austin in September. Also to New Orleans on their tour. And some other places that people reading this might be near.)

Celebrities and war is kind of annoying to me anyway. They have as much right as any other US citizen to say what they want, but the fact that they already have a pre-created stage for speaking their mind is kind of unfair to less famous people who probably have smarter things to say, either for or against... or--shudder to think--somewhere in the middle (since really what I'm annoyed by is people jumping quickly to their pre-prescribed "right" sides depending on what is the always-already popular/acceptable thing to say). I haven't heard too many smart, balanced celebrities. Jon Stewart, perhaps? The Daily Show in general seems to be the smartest thing on television right now concerning the war, certainly more than the 24 hour news networks (and I'm not just talking about Geraldo).

Hey look, an actual rant. Possibly I shall transform this into a We Like Media essay.

Woodie Guthrie.