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Weird European Music Videos, Tres Sexee?

January 14, 2011

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Our L.A. writer friend Charlie Amter recently launched a labor-of-love blog called EUROPOPPED, what he describes as “a little epic sideblog” to “turn on more people to the crazy Euro music vids” he finds every day. And they ARE crazy. Or just foreign. Or maybe something is just getting lost in translation. Whatever the reason, it makes for entertaining time-killing, even if you can’t speak French or German…

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We’re in a Ted Talk! (Sort of)

January 7, 2011

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If you’re a faithful reader of EMandLO.com, then you know we love us a good Ted Talk. So we were thrilled to discover that the two of us were in one! Well, just a fleeting picture of us, but we’ll take what we can get. Our old boss, Nerve.com-founder Rufus Griscom, went on to found the parenting site Babble.com with his wife Alisa Volkman, and the two recently gave a Ted Talk on some big parenting taboos. Most Ted Talks include images used to illustrate the presenter’s thesis, so we were surprised and delighted, yet confused to see a 20-foot picture at the start of the talk of the four of us in an old flame-painted convertible known then as the Nerve-mobile (Rufus and Alisa in the front, us riding up and out in the back) on our way to one of those fabulous turn-of-the century Internet parties in New York City. We guess they used it to illustrate their pre-baby pre-Babble lives (Rufus said he’s always loved that picture) but viewers must wonder what those two badly dressed freeloaders are doing in the car that Ruf and Alisa are driving into the future of their lives together.

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Movie Theater Marriage Proposals

January 3, 2011

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The 21st century’s answer to the skywriting marriage proposal is turning out to be the movie theater trailer proposal, with production values and costs ever increasing. In 2008, there was the simple surprise by the nerdy boyfriend, followed by the more complicated yet similarly unwatchable airplane disaster trailer that same year, and the open love letter with the ear-shattering Kenny-G soundtrack in 2009 (here’s the in-theater reaction).  This past year gave us even bigger and better movie theater proposals: there was the iPhone app ad, Mystery Guitar Man’s fake movie with Ultimate Fighting champion Chuck Liddell (here’s how he made it), a love story with personalized Muppets, and most recently, one Jesus freak’s action movie homage to his love for Miss NY 2007. Surprisingly, though, one of the most intricate and involved fake trailers we could find was made over 10 years ago (in the film noir style)…

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Genesis Finally Makes Sense

November 4, 2010

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Writer/performer/artist Merrill Markoe visited the Creation Museum in Kentucky last year and absorbed all the “proof” there that the world was created just 6,000 years ago and that dinosaurs walked among humans. As if through divine intervention, it suddenly, recently dawned on Markoe how to help the museum make their case. So she created this video. Now we finally understand why we women deserve to be dominated by men and suffer pain during childbirth!

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The Bed Intruder Costume

October 25, 2010

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A few weeks ago we fondly wrote about the Know Your Meme podcast, and specifically highlighted their coverage of the loveable Antoine Dodson of “Bed Intruder” fame. Well, now he’s got what he (at least) is calling the # 1 Halloween get-up of 2010: The official Bed Intruder Costume! And good for him — why shouldn’t he make a buck off the joy he’s given to million of viral video heads?  Check out his YouTube video hawking the product — how can you not love this guy? It’s a vast improvement over the “sassy” Sesame Street outfits (though we must admit a Katy Perry ensemble with an Elmo doll could be pretty funny.)  Mental Floss has a good list of other Internet meme costumes (the Firefox idea is totally cool, though that posture could get a little uncomfortable after a while). Our favorite couples costume idea we’ve found so far is YourTango’s Double Rainbow suggestion. So many good ideas this year, what to be? What to be!

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New Season of Craigslist TV

October 18, 2010

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A few weeks ago, Craigslist TV (on YouTube) launched their second season of mini-documentaries based on real Craigslist ads. (Watch the trailer for the series here.) If you think reading the ads is great entertainment for inducing second-hand embarrassment, try watching them. Our favorite, of course, is still the first one from the first season, “Trista and Tara’s Missed Connection,” probably because it reminds us of our own humiliating single life adventures (i.e. two drunk girls out looking for love in all the wrong places!). All L.A.-based, the episodes are surprisingly well-crafted, simple, quirky, painful and touching in their own ways.

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How Mr. Condom Made Thailand a Better Place

October 13, 2010

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photo from Getty Images

We’ve got our TiVo hooked up to get the latest Ted Talks on our TV, so we were delighted to find Mechai Viravaidya’s presentation “How Mr. Condom Made Thailand a Better Place” in our “Now Playing” list recently. Viravaidya is an eloquent and funny speaker, which alone makes it worth watching the 14-minute talk. But what’s really amazing is his account of how a country dedicated to reducing poverty and saving lives can really make strides when they’re not set back by a narrow-minded, religiously zealous, sexually repressed culture (yes, we’re talking about you, America).

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Dan Savage’s “It Gets Better”

October 8, 2010

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A great article in the NYTimes this past weekend about cyberbullying — and in particular cyberbullying over sexual orientation — included this line which really made us stop and think: “the punishment must fit the crime, not the sense of outrage over it.” It’s wise and it’s true, but we’d forgotten that — and it doesn’t answer the question, what do you do with all the outrage you feel? The outraged part of us feels that Tyler Clementi’s college roommate — who secretly filmed Clementi hooking up with another guy then posted it online, leading to Clementi’s suicide — deserves to go to jail for a long, long time. Same goes for the assholes who bullied 13-year-old Seth Walsh about his sexual orientation — Walsh hanged himself from a tree in his backyard last month and died after more than a week on life support. And countless other gay teen suicides across the country — often as a direct result of peer bullying.

But now we’ve figured out what we can do — throw all our energies into supporting Dan Savage’s awesome new YouTube channel, “It Gets Better.” Savage and his husband filmed the first video themselves, and we dare you to watch it without crying, especially in light of the recent bullying and suicides. Their message to gay teens? Life after high school does get better, but only if you stick around and live your life. And if you don’t stick around, the bigots win. They talk about how they each found a community of supportive friends, how they came out to their families, how they found each other, how they adopted their son together, and how awesome life as a gay man can be, once you’ve left the teenage bigots behind. And now they are soliciting video submissions from anyone else who can help spread the same message (they already have more than a hundred submissions). As Savage writes in his column, “LGBT kids who don’t know any LGBT adults need to see—with their own eyes—that gay adults lead happy and rewarding lives. So if you decide to make a video—and I hope that you do—don’t just share your pain. Share your joy. Give ‘em hope. Save a life.”

Savage and his husband both say that their lives improved the second they graduated from high school, though sadly that wasn’t true for Tyler Clementi. But the ultimate message is, once you can choose where you live and who you live with and who you socialize with — which may not happen until after college for some people — you are going to have an awesome life. Please tell everyone you know about this channel; we can’t imagine a better, more uplifting response to all the asshole bigots like Clementi’s roommate. Also, will someone please make Dan Savage — who is, no shit, a good Catholic boy — a goddamn saint already?

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Katy Perry’s Cleavage Knows How to Get to Sesame Street

September 24, 2010

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Or rather, how to get kicked off Sesame Street. Perry shot a music video with Elmo for the pre-schoolers’ show featuring a version of her “Hot n’ Cold” hit, this one about playing dress up (natch). Sesame Street does this all the time — kidifying a pop tune with the actual artist; check out Feist’s version of “1, 2, 3, 4″ for an excellent example. But this time around, the powers that be thought a low-cut, cleavage exposing, booberific outfit was appropriate for the wee ones (they even have Perry running around which makes ignoring the bouncing cleavage near impossible). A mesh colored top that accentuates the breastages may be cool for the MTV music awards, but for the love of all that’s good and pure, let’s keep Sesame Street a sex-free zone. Little girls have a hard enough time growing up in a world where they’re taught their greatest asset is their outward appearance, where their value is measured in sexiness — they don’t need to become aware of this pressure at two. Over the past week since the video was released online parents have complained, resulting in the show pulling it from their upcoming broadcast but allowing it on Katy Perry’s own YouTube channel for her more mature fans to enjoy.

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Know Your Meme

September 10, 2010

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We’ve been long-time fans (well, long-time in terms of Internet years) of the website and podcast “Know Your Meme,” a “web series and online database dedicated to documenting Internet culture, one scientismic investigation at a time.” They give you information on the back-story, viral development and spin-offs of every crazy contemporary meme out there, from Auto-Tune to Double Rainbow to shit you’ve never even heard of. While the whole thing is kind of silly, the “scientists” (read: comedians) behind KYM actually do pose — and answer quite well — some smart and interesting questions about our fast-paced viral Internet culture. Take their report on Antoine Dodson/Bed Intruder: Are we laughing at Atoine or with him, as his flamboyant threats against his sister’s would-be rapist to a local news crew are Auto-tuned into a smash hit available on iTunes?

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