And now, a great guest entry from Ellen on how to not make things tougher on a friend who is unemployed and looking for a job. Ellen?
Say “how are you?” just as you would with any other person, then let him bring it into the conversation. As with any life adversity, sometimes people want to…
I wrote this! Having been on both sides of the job-hunting fence I thought it would be a great way to remind myself and everybody of the delicacy of the situation, which is quite common these days but still a way to a blunder.
Had nothing been said, shot or sent, this would’ve been just another night, like sadly so many anywhere in America with a confused girl wondering what really happened.
Instead, this group of teens, so full of an overabundance of self worth, filmed and documented the crime, perhaps never assuming anyone would see it for what it was.
They basically told the victim about it. Their friends essentially took real-time crime-scene photos for the cops. Of course, this was only possible because Mays and Richmond were more than comfortable committing the crime right in front of witnesses in the first place.
Mays, in particular, essentially confessed to the crime via hundreds of text messages over the next few days – ranging from profound bravado in the immediate aftermath, to matter-of-fact statements the next day, to a panicked attempted cover-up and witness control as reality began to set in.
Mays all but wrote out the prosecution’s closing arguments.
Yes, this was extreme arrogance. The arrogance to not just joke and brag like the teenage boys they were, but to commit those jokes to text messages, to snap a photo of the girl being carried out like she was a casualty coming off a battle field…
The arrogance to assume everyone else would think like them, to take outlandish jokes told in private and put them on YouTube for everyone to see. It’s one thing to say something stupid. It’s another to promote it to the world.
Only, they later found out – harshly – that the rest of the world didn’t find it such a laughing matter.
Dan Wetzel on the Steubenville rape verdict, announced today, and the role that social media played in evidence.
From Reuters: “State forensic analysts waded through more than 396,000 text messages, 308,000 photos/pictures and 940 video clips recovered from cell phones as part of the investigation.”
One of the convicted young men included this sentence in his apology to the victim (NY Daily News): “No pictures should have been sent around, let alone taken.” I don’t think it’s his right to frame this case as one about the judicious use of social media… do you?
This is a map of where Missed Connections on Craig’s List happen most by state.
I love all the Walmart states.
I used to write a regular column suggesting destinations to meet single people by Craigslist Missed Connections in various cities. The preponderance of big-box stores and supermarkets here doesn’t surprise me at all, although really gyms should be further up there. (I don’t understand how everyone in Georgia is meeting in “the car,” but transportation scientists may want to take a look.) Also, who wants to go to the Oklahoma State Fair?
Take a successful and apparently critic-proof action franchise.
Mix in a lot of actors with fairly successful, fairly continuous careers, including some that were killed off in previous installments or who at one point thought their career trajectories were going to take them places other than apparently critic-proof action franchises.
Don’t prevent them from sharing online what they would be sharing anyway.
"Flipping every lever" ("Emperor’s New Groove" callback??) is great, but having the most trailer views for your summer blockbuster on YouTube is a statistic that by itself doesn’t predict this movie’s success.
True, I can’t even remember the “Iron Man 3” preview from the Super Bowl, whereas I spent the duration of the “Fast & Furious” sneak peek trying to guess which car manufacturer they were representing. But then, “Fast Five” on release was seen as a surprisingly good movie after a string of jokes, and “Iron Man 2” mostly as “not as good as the last one,” so the former has more of a tide to ride.
.7% of my Facebook friends are (public) fans of Vin Diesel.
This is how I came to be one degree away from Dan Stevens of “Downton Abbey” fame (or current infamy depending on how you feel about Season 3, no spoilers):
My top 10 Google results are 90% me, but my top 10 Google Image Search results are only about 40% accurate. Up here I see 3 actors and 1 baby that doesn’t belong to me, but (presumably) to another Ellen Wernecke who lives in NJ and pins under our name on Pinterest. I’m not mad — she’s got pretty good taste* and is a much heavier user than I am. (It should be taken as a sign of Pinterest’s search engine might that of my sister’s top 10 GIS results, 5 are of her and the other 5 are all people she follows on Pinterest.)
But let’s get to Dan Stevens in the bottom row.
Before he was Matthew Crawley, Stevens starred in a BBC miniseries adaptation of Alan Hollinghurst’s The Line of Beauty in 2006. I interviewed him around that time, which ought to indicate his relative level of fame because I could probably never get through to him now. But then he was a working theatre actor in London for whom a starring role as a (spoiler?) closeted gay man in Thatcherite Britain was a huge break.
I interviewed him one morning at my (unrelated) internship, ducking below my cube partition so as not to attract notice. I remember him being very polite and nerdily enthusiastic; I think he was on set at a new version of “Dracula” at the time. I really liked the miniseries, which is out on DVD, although of course the book is better.
I’m just sorry I won’t get the chance to ask him if he also is 10% George Michael.
*At first I wanted to write “She’s not damaging our personal brand” and then I fell into a 2007 wormhole, which is the only place where that lingo would truly make sense.
Last night I went to a panel at Housing Works Bookstore called “The Last Shot” on the state of the summer blockbuster. Afterward, some friends and I were talking about what we had heard, and one lamented that the panel seemed to overly dwell on the embarrassments and messes of summer 2011. I don’t fault cohosts Zach Baron and Sean Fennessey for this; they opened with some paragraphs from Entertainment Weekly writer Mark Harris’ takedown, in GQ, of “Top Gun” (which he later referred to as an “artificial villain”) and the movie-marketing culture that produces films like “Transformers 3” and is forced to make “Green Lantern 2” a hit. (I believe it was Slate's Dana Stevens who referred to the latter franchise as “like the banks — too big to fail,” even though the first installment tanked pretty splashily.)
That said, just because I’m feeling extra chipper, here are some highlights for me of this movie season:
"Bridesmaids" and its success. I have already paid to see this movie twice, and may yet go a 3rd time.
Subsidiary to that, the announcement soon after of new projects for “Bridesmaids” cowriter Annie Mumolo (Scared Plane Woman if you’ve seen the film) and costar Melissa McCarthy (who played Megan) — because it doesn’t move anything forward just to have one big box-office success.
The risk of oversaturation by Jason Bateman.
Those major comic-book blockbusters that flopped didn’t linger around to poison the national discussion. Prior to last night I hadn’t thought about “Green Lantern” in weeks, and that was a sorely needed break.
“Super 8,” a sweet little monster movie with more than a hint of scare, but good enough to take the whole family.
While it didn’t completely work for me, the last installment of the “Harry Potter” series wrapped it up with grace without losing any of its 3 leads (or any of the major players, with the exception of Richard Harris [R.I.P.] as Dumbledore).
Michael Fassbender, from British character actor to major franchise player.
The August promise of ensemble comedies like “Crazy Stupid Love” and “My Idiot Brother.”
That the failure, or at least disappointing performance of, Olivia Wilde’s major projects (“Cowboys & Aliens” and “The Change-Up”) means she will soon fade into obscurity. Okay, I’m reaching, but a lady has to dream!
Results of a straw poll I took on Twitter reveal a four-way tie for the summer’s worst movie between “Bad Teacher,” “Cars 2,” “The Hangover 2” and “Transformers 3.” My pick would probably be “Bore,” I mean “Thor.”
Here’s Anderson Cooper throwing away a career’s worth of credibility and gravitas to talk about how much he loves the Onion at the Paley Center in New York last night. Warms your heart. (He was later confronted with "Afghan Warlord Takes Anderson Cooper As 43rd Wife" on that screen. Doth the man blush? Oh, he doth blush.)
If you like reading about super-religious people and/or you liked Nixonland, Darren Dochuk’s From Bible Belt to Sunbelt is right up your alley. As for David Vann’s Caribou Island, the bleakness is right in tune with how the cold this year in New York has broken me and I will be in these wool socks until June. (My Pilgrim forebears are way upset.)
Happy 2011! This was actually the last review I wrote in 2010, so I maintain that I was just ending one year on a down note, not dooming my 2011 reading list to mediocrity.
A commenter pointed out that the book follows the plot of a Czech opera called “The Makropulos Affair,” which indeed I hadn’t heard of before reading. Here’s a description of a 2009 performance on a blog called OperaChic (awesomely aggro tag line: “I’m a young American woman living in Milan, and you’re not. I go to La Scala a lot, and you don’t.”) I stand informed, but not corrected.