- Facial Hair and Presidential elections - The other day at lunch, I wondered aloud why so few presidential candidates have beards or facial hair of any kind. As with all discussions of marginalia, we naturally turned to the internet and found this stunningly detailed account of facial hair and elections. Author Nicholas Whyte is also pretty free-flowing with the snark, making it quite the humorous read:
Only five US presidents have sported full beards, and another four had moustaches of varying degrees of glory. These were all during the half century run of the dozen Presidents between Lincoln and Taft, of whom only Andrew Johnson and McKinley were clean-shaven.Probably owing to Lincoln, the "Republicans have historically been the hairier party." And Democrats... well:
The Democrats have never had a properly bearded candidate. Their losing candidates in 1864, 1868 and 1872 had really stupid beards - one a wee tuft combined with a luxurious moustache, the other two with grotesquely extended sideburns meeting below. The only successful Democrat who even went as far as a moustache was Grover Cleveland, who won the popular vote three times running in 1884, 1888 and 1892. (Cleveland lost the electoral college in 1888 to Benjamin Harrison, so far the last American President with a proper beard.) The hairiest Democrat was Winfield Scott Hancock, whose huge moustache did not help him in the 1880 election, and Democrats with moustaches lost in 1864 and 1904.Really excellent work here, with everything you could ever possibly want to know about facial hair and presidential candidates. I love the internet.
- The Internet Explorer 6 Countdown - Well, yes, I work for a retail website so you bet your arse I can't wait for people to get off this horrid browser, but that's not why I'm linking to this site. The reason this is hysterically funny is that the site is actually run by Microsoft. (hat tip to Dave)
- My Top Ten Top Ten Top Ten list - Yes, it's a top ten list consisting entirely of links to other top ten lists... of top ten lists. Have I mentioned that I love the internet?
- The Best Things We Read All Year - Yeah, there are a lot of good things to read in here. I hope you have some time, because you're going to be reading these for a while.
- The 20 Unhappiest People You Meet In The Comments Sections Of Year-End Lists - Speaking of lists, here's a fairly comprehensive list of the types of annoying comments you're likely to get. If you're popular. None of my lists ever seem to generate comments from the likes of:
11. The Person Who Thinks You Were So Close. "I like all these picks, but you ranked The Descendants as your #4 and Martha Marcy May Marlene as your #5, and they should be the other way around. FAIL."I'm not quite Harry The Hipster-Hater, Who Really, Really Hates Hipsters (as I'd never leave a comment like that), but I'm pretty close, because fuck those hipsters.
- How Pixar screwed up cartoon cars for a generation of kids - Boy, critics really had a great time ridiculing Cars 2 this year, and many have pointed out the absurdities of anthropomorphizing cars (to the point where it's becoming a bit boring to do so), but I can't believe this is the first time anyone's pointed out this particular incongruity:
The eyes of anthropomorphized cars are the headlights, not the windshield.Heh.
And there's no exceptions here. Having a cartoon car with the eyes in the windshield is wrong, just wrong. And that includes you, too, Pixar.
As I spend some time compiling nominations for the 6th Annual Kaedrin Movie Awards (a thorough and comprehensive process that takes weeks!), my chain-smoking monkey research squad has run into some other fun things you might be interested in...