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Two People Won Set Lists from Reading & Leeds!September 18th, 2014View
We have the results of last week’s Facebook contest to win signed set lists from Reading & Leeds. The decision was agonizing, but poring over the entries was pure bliss. 

Congratulations are due to Hannah Owen, who created a photo collage that sears the mind with its brutal physicality and bold use of color…

 

And to Fraser King, whose multimedia confection combines whimsy and verisimilitude in perfect measures.

 

And finally to runner up Tom Nixon. His rigorous topicality is leavened with a devilish sense of humor.

 

Congratulations to Hannah and Fraser, and thanks to all who submitted.

 

 

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Free download of “Distillery” on Friday — believe itSeptember 17th, 2014View

Download our new song, “Distillery,” FOR FREE on Friday. What’s the catch? THERE’S NO CATCH! Just kidding, there’s totally a catch, but it’s a small one: You have to be on our mailing list to get the download. Here’s the thing about the emails we send our mailing list:

1) They’re rare (you’ll pray for more in bed at night, or kneeling in front of a statue of a giant octopus, or however you get your praying done)
2) They’re useful (they come with things like free downloads and early access to low-fee tickets and unseen photos — sometimes even INVISIBLE photos!)
3) They’re pleasant (we take a nice conversational tone, a lot like the one we’re using in this Facebook post, which is a lot like the one we use in our private lives when talking to friends and family)
4) We write them (every word, unless we’re quoting from a film or tv commercial or historical document, in which case we’ll put the words in “quotes” — but no label personnel or managers or cyborgs or famous authors will ever write to you, just us, Chris & Keith & L224X version 3, our scribe droid (ha! Kidding about the droid!))

Sign up for that mailing list by clicking on this very sentence.

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We’re on the David Letterman TV Show tonight!May 21st, 2014View

Catch it or miss it — those are pretty much your two options.

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Videos
“Business Casual,” our new EP featuring “Return the Favor” and four other tracks, is out October 14 (UK/Europe), October 15 (US), and pretty close to that in other countries. Directed by Dan Monick.

Rules don’t stop videoMore Videos

Equine Upholstery
Rooney Mara’s Mysterious WaysView

“PALE FIRE: ROONEY MARA’S MYSTERIOUS WAYS AND RED-HOT CAREER”
–Vogue, February 2013

Rooney Mara woke, as ever, precisely at dawn. She peeled herself from the metal sleeping surface; already in the morning cold her thermal silhouette, lying invisibly where she had lain, began to fade.

“Eggs. Two. Fried. Toast. Coffee,” she said aloud, stepping into the dark kitchen. But there were no sophisticated appliances capable of voice recognition, and nothing happened.

Rooney Mara walked onto a balcony through a door left open during the night. She looked out at a glittering section of a town whose name she had never bothered to learn (it was Los Angeles) and began gently to sway, her bare heels sounding like a roll of tape as they lifted away from sturdy redwood planks filmed with day-old grape jelly.

Later, stacking empty thread spools to make a spire, Rooney Mara pricked her finger on a sewing needle wedged secretly in one spool’s cleft and cursed.

“Gadgets!”

She held the stung finger close to her face and waited, with an expiring frown, for a pinhead of blood that did not appear.

The tires on Rooney Mara’s car shuddered and let out a ghostly moan as, at 10 a.m. exactly, she careened into the drive-in of the In-N-Out Burger closest to her home. To a sign displaying the menu and embedded with a microphone and speaker she said, “Hi, can I get a ha-haaaa? Can I get a haa-haa-haaaaa?” Her voice was flat and mirthless.

“Did you give me a ha-haaaaa?” She drew out the last syllable until eventually it grew quiet and she ran out of breath.

“Did you give me a haa…,” but she hadn’t paused long enough to breathe, and this time “ha” was whispered.

“Ma’am?” said a voice projected from the speaker.

“Can I know about your haaaaaaaa…” This time she’d gotten a good breath and the question carried on for nearly a minute before her diaphragm shuddered and quit.

Inside, a manager said, “That’s Rooney Mara.”

“The actor?” asked the teenager taking drive-through orders.

“Yeah. Just fill a bag with crumbled up tray sheets and scoop some fries on top. She barely looks,” said the manager.

“What do you mean?”

“You’ll see.”

So the younger man filled a large bag with balled tray covers, then carefully arranged two scoops of fries so they covered the paper. “That’s three eighteen at the window,” he said into his microphone.

Hearing this from the outdoor speaker, Rooney Mara drove forward until she sat parallel with the window, then stopped. A boy she thought was about her age stood inside looking at her.

“Hi, uh, three eighteen,” he said.

She reached both hands through her car window and held them out in expectation.

“Three eighteen?” said the teenager.

Rooney Mara’s arms straightened painfully, and her fingers stretched at odd angles. She showed all of her teeth.

The teenager nervously reached the bagful of paper and fries toward Rooney Mara, and slowly her arms closed around it, no quicker but no less determined than the pedals of a flower hinging inward at the end of the day.

The tires tut-tutted as Rooney Mara accelerated quickly out into mid-morning traffic, fries and balled paper spilling from the order bag left slumped on the drive-thru’s newsprint-colored pavement among giant ink-blotches of motor oil.

Once, in a Vermont ski lodge when Rooney Mara was 11, she watched flames lap thirstily at stones in a giant fireplace while her parents drank white wine and talked about whether to brave the evening snowfall or order pizza. Mrs. Mara screamed and Mr. Mara shouted “God!” when they noticed, almost simultaneously, that Rooney Mara had immersed both of her arms up to the elbows in the roaring fire. A doctor’s dinner was interrupted by the hotel’s urgent call, and he chided the parents for exaggerating when he found absolutely nothing wrong with the girl’s arms.

Once, when Rooney Mara was on a roller coaster, she became scared, her grip tightening on the leg of the boy next to her. The boy’s leg was beginning to hurt a great deal when all life suddenly drained from the cars, bringing them to a stop near the middle of a steep decline.

“That’s better,” Rooney Mara exhaled, and released her grip.

Once, Rooney Mara told her mother that she was finished riding the pony her parents had rented for her birthday party. Mrs. Mara told her to hold on another minute while her father reloaded the camera. The pony’s legs wobbled and folded gently underneath him; his pupils shrank to dots. Rooney Mara slid off the carcass and walked across the grass toward a group of her friends who were getting their faces painted to look like mice.

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7 Need-to-Know Facts About Star WarsView

A new Star Wars trilogy is over the horizon! Here are seven stellar bits of trivia concerning the first six films. Guaranteed to impress even your nerdiest friends!

  1. The gold-colored character C3PO, who appears in all six Star Wars films, is, in fact, made of metal! He is a robot.
  2. The clone warriors of Episodes I, II, & III, though they look identical to Storm Troopers, are good guys!
  3. Chewbacca, Han Solo’s wookie assistant, is always just saying “Chewbacca!” in wookie language when he talks.
  4. The Ewoks, who appear in Episode VI, were played by trained dogs! After the movie’s completion, each of the actors had to keep one!
  5. During the filming of Episode II, a wild pig got onto the Millenium Falcon set and George Lucas shot it!
  6. In order to film the underwater scenes in Phantom Menace, the actor who played Jar-Jar Binks had to learn to actually breath underwater!
  7. In Episode III, Revenge of the Sith, you can see a weird little thing that wasn’t supposed to be there. George Lucas was reportedly so angry about this, he divorced his wife.


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W.A.S. Ad Solutions NetworksView

We have started a solutions networks for advertisers! If you’re an advertiser, or know someone who is, or is affiliated with one, or if you’re affiliated with one, and if it’s solutions you/they/she/he/it are after, look no further than our “networks.”™ We offer an adaptable, highly-rigid set of solutions developed over many years of industry experience and experimentation. Our list of clients speaks for itself:

• Jumanji
• Eric Idle (Monty Python, Spamalot)
• Boston Public Sewer System

Ask yourself this: Do you want ads that grab the attention of potential clients and won’t let go? That shake potential clients like a dog shakes a rabbit? That ingest clients whole like in the snake–rat arrangement? Let us revivify your dying brand. Here’s what we did for Google, a popular search engine whose quiet, lackluster ads littered New York City subway stations for months:

Our "murder" concept revivified Google's moribund subway campaign.


Two weeks after we tweaked the flaccid copy on Google’s subway posters — ”juiced it and goosed it”™ — whatever service it was they were trying to sell experienced a sudden jump in impressions, engagement, awareness, and money happening™.

The results speak for themselves. And they speak volumes. Isn’t it time you gave your product the edge it needs to drive consumers down the purchase funnel toward longterm loyalty? Do you want customers, or brand ambassadors? The answers are — or should be — obvious. Or what, are you a turncoat piece of shit working covertly for a competitor?

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Stuff to Shout When You’re Watching Sports With DudesView

Thanksgiving weekend is upon us here in the United States, and that means SPORTS are right up on us, too. Yes, if you know a dude, are a dude, or just choose to emulate dude patterns, you will surely have no choice but to watch some sports this weekend. Which means you’ll have no choice but to shout things at the screen, supposedly to communicate something to an athlete, a coach, or a ref, but really — anthropologists believe — more for the benefit of the (other) dudes in the room. So GET IT RIGHT this year! Read through this useful guide and ensure that you are prepared to dole out the sauciest, most biting, most BADASS color commentary — no matter which sport is raging up there on the 72-inch plasma.


    Football

Ref needs an eye check! Glasses! Saw it bad!

Piled of spires… desperate to, to…


    NASCAR

I look at these reminds me of my old race sets…

Teachin’ table French.


    Swimming

This has to be some kinda new joke, this style of, am I ahead, am I behind, what’s the next… It’s what’s the next MEANING for these guys, in reality.


    Beads

Goddamn god in HEAVEN but they shimmer…

This guy’ll put his needle’n'thread through everything catches the light, grandma bless him. He’s Alexander the Great out there.


    Soft-Core Pornography

Even if his tongue ISN’T touching her pussy right now, he can definitely taste something. I mean he’s tasting SOMETHING in that bufferzone of air, and he knows exactly what it is.


    Werner Herzog’s “Cave of Dreams”

No, you leave this ON. I’ve heard inCREDIBLE things about this film. You wanna go watch some goddamn Michael-Bay-Avatar-3D-paint-by-numbers BULLSHIT… [tears flooding the eyes]… you go ahead… [breathing heavy]… Me I don’t mind getting some CULTURE on my pizza… [hands covering face]… Pass me some peetz–… [sobs twice]… pass me a BEER [extends hand, cheeks wet].

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Harrison Ford Has Met SomeoneView

Using CGI techniques developed by James Cameron for the film An Avatar, we created this exploration of the private world of actor/gymnast Harrison Ford.

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Reviews
Keith reviews the Katy Perry (feat. Max Hart) ShowView

 

 

So, people, Chris and I went to see the Katy Perry extravaganza last night at Madison Square Garden. Our old friend, former Scientist Max Hart, is now her touring keyboardist, you see, and so our attendance at the show was just a demonstration of friendly solidarity.  That’s all.  We love Max.  We went to cheer for him, not to leer at Katy Perry.  Definitely not to leer, no.

"You guys aren't just going to come and leer, are you? Dudes . . ."

The whole thing was a bit last-minute and entirely up in the air: guest list spots for the Katy Perry Show are, understandably, at a premium, especially in New York City, a town positively brimming with high-visibilty Perry fans like Edward Burns and Anna Wintour and Mike Bloomberg, who are apt to use their celebrity and political muscle to snap up all available tickets.

"Baby, I'm a firework."

So, at 8:15 pm Chris and I were at Huckleberry Bar in Williamsburg, expecting to be shut out, crying into our high-end cocktails.  We were ready to call the night – hell, to call our very lives – a total wash.  That’s when the text came.   We were in!  Cut to the desperate pounding of our precious beverages (mine, a rye/absinthe concoction, and Chris’, a weird-sounding but well-received chai/whisky thing) in the interest of making haste to MSG. One feels very safe assuming that we were the only of the 14,000 Perry fans in attendance last night to preface the show with a pair of superior tipples.

"Me? I just slugged a handle of Gordon's gin in the lavatory at Penn Station"

By the time we arrived at the venue, it was several minutes after show-time, and the lobby was peppered with a few stragglers.  By and large, these were desperate ticketless bastards, who impeded our progress at the will call window with their blubbering and fuming over the attendants’ unwillingness to hand over tickets that, clearly, their contacts had failed to arrange for pickup.  Having secured our iron-clad tickets through the ever-reliable Max, we had little empathy for these wretches, especially since their endemic unwillingness to accept defeat caused us to miss at least a few of the opening numbers.  I relished imagining the fees they’d have to pay the thuggish touts outside, or, failing scalping, the degenerate sexual exchanges they must have negotiated.

"My daddy forgot to procure tickets in advance and ended up having to give Edward Burns a handjob right out on 8th avenue."

Golden tickets in hand, Cain and I scrambled to our seats, which we we were surprised to find occupied by a gaggle of girls in their early teens.   We let them keep our seats and took a couple of empty spots next to them, which seemed like a good, generous move until the gang of nasty hags started metastasizing and flooding our row and shrewishly bitching every time Chris or I had to wriggle in front of them to go get more beers, which, admittedly, we needed to do very frequently.

Don't you judge us.

But, people, the show was great.  It was simply great.  It had everything: tremendous set design, extravagant costumes, boobs, phenomenal dancers, boobs, a couple of acrobats, and Katy Perry’s boobs.  It also featured, as a framing device for the evening, a video backstory, which was admittedly pretty inscrutable, since we’d missed the beginning of the show.  It centered around Perry’s search for her cartoon cat (?) through an Oz-like candyland, and it was batshit crazy.  At one point, the floating, disembodied-but-still-very-much-alive head of some bald pederast appeared and seemed to be threatening her, while pharmaceuticals orbited around it.   When video-Perry finally found the cat, she learned that it had intentionally led her [spoiler alert] to a blue wig, which was on display in the middle of fucking nowhere. This development seemed to delight Perry, but I’ll tell you what: if I had chased a cat around some nightmarish candy-riddled hellhole for hours and battled antagonistic severed heads and other shit I’m currently forgetting, only to find out that the cat just wanted me to experiment with some new hairstyles, I would positively thrash that damned animal, forfeiture of future “PETA’s Sexiest Vegetarian” competitions be damned.

"It's good enough for Billy Zane"

Another unexpected thing about the show was that it demonstrated a fairly heartrending rift between Perry’s personal sensibilities and her audience’s collective maturity level.  The whole production was ribald as hell, which is fine for a couple of salty old dogs like Chris and I, but, no shit, people – a good 70% of the audience seemed to be pre-pubescent girls, with a large portion of the remaining crowd composed of their fathers.  Most of the dads, let’s be honest, didn’t exactly appear to be complaining.

"I like exactly two things about Katy Perry"

The father sitting in front of me demonstrated far more enthusiasm for the show than did his five-year-old daughter, but I’m guessing that’s because she didn’t catch the connotations when Perry, while singing a song dressed as a Peacock (Lyrics: “I wanna see your peacock, cock, cock”, which, I’ll tell you what, if a woman ever referred to my dick as a “pea cock,” I can pretty goddamn well guarantee that I would not respond by showing it to her), but, so, anyway, while she sang these lyrics, she held her microphone perpendicular to her mouth and she bobbed her head back and forth, ostensibly maybe mimicking the nod of a peacock’s head as it walks, but, really, it just looked like she and her dancers were orgiastically fellating the hell out of some microphones.

"I'd fuck me."

Or maybe the seven-year-old girl to my right didn’t catch it when Perry kissed a guy from the audience on the cheek and then salaciously reported to the crowd that one thing she likes about American guys is “that they give back.”  Or maybe the kid just thought that Perry’s spandex leotard was itchy when she (Perry, not the little girl, you asshole) rubbed her crotch as she sang, “We kiss, we make out” during “Hot and Cold.”  Or maybe the children just weren’t semiotically savvy enough to digest the symbolism in video projections of cartoon bottles of champagne blowing their loads in the final, climactic number.  Or maybe they just thought it was cool to be doused in the foam that spurted from a decidedly phallic candy-cane squirt-gun as Perry stroked it, suggestively.  Maybe these nine-year-olds misunderstood Perry’s question when they squealed (in a disturbingly high pitch) in response to her wondering aloud, “Who’s feeling sexy, tonight?”  Referring to the two almost impossibly cherubic kids who danced in the row behind us during one particularly lurid number, Chris worried, “I sure hope they didn’t see the lascivious tonguing of that dancer’s asshole.”

"We admit it - we enjoy watching a little tastefully-simulated eroticism every now and then."

But, you know what?  The kids loved it, even if they were too stupid to catch all of the great sex junk.  At one point, as I was looking down at my phone, writing a gloating text to an absent friend, a section of the crowd let out a huge cheer.  “Why’d they scream?  What’d she do?” I asked Chris.

“She pointed herself in their direction,” he said.

So, yeah:  Perry’s got panache to spare, and she’s got a handful of totally badass songs, and her band is fantastic, and Max Hart gets a couple of really top-notch keyboard solos, and the whole thing is just generally very joyous and over-the-top and must cost a goddamned arm and a leg to produce, but it’s worth every penny of the expense. Look, if you see only one show this year (and it won’t be a We Are Scientists show, since we’re gonna be writing the next record for the next couple of months), make it Katy Perry’s Porno Fuckfest, or whatever it’s called.

"Bring the fuckin' kids!"

 

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Bee LiquorsView

225 Avenue B
New York, NY 10009
(212) 995-5606

4/5 stars

Bee is every bit as cheap and shitty as previous reviewers have suggested. So far everything I’ve bought there has inebriated me, to one degree or another. My credit cards always work in their machine, and there are never any smashed bottles lying around on the ground. Wine that comes out of the fridge is cold. Just don’t go to Bee’s looking for beer: it’s not that their beer is old and skunky or that the beer comes in cracked, leaking bottles; it’s that they don’t have beer.

There’s a pretty cool neon sign in the front window that says “Dewar’s Rocks.” I like the ambiguity of it. Does it mean that Dewar’s is great — that it “rocks”? Or is it referencing the “rocks” of Dewar’s — its nuts, cojones? The graphic is actually a pirate (or something) holding a guitar, which suggests a third, really stupid meaning: that Dewar’s plays rock music (?).

Incidentally, if you go to the Dewar’s website — which I just did, looking for a reproduction of the neon sign to show you — you are asked on the front page to enter your date of birth. You have to at least claim to be 21 before you’re given access to any of the site’s content. This got me pretty excited. I was expecting that the Dewar’s site would feature pictures of — at minimum — topless women drinking whisky. No, though. It just has pictures of Dewar’s in closed bottles. You have to be 21 to look at pictures of alcohol? And read about the distilling process? As a father of a 5-year-old: Thank god.

Anyway, there’s absolutely no reason not to head to Bee Liquors right now. Don’t bother if you’re after beer.

(Only Chris has been to Bee Liquors, but he thinks the other guys would agree with his frustration about the lack of boobs on the Dewar’s website.)

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Vermont Maple BBQView

Rinker’s Mobil, Exit 4 off I-89
Randolph, VT

3/5 stars

Two out of three of us had a delicious lunch today in the parking lot of a filling station along a small road that bisects a rolling green field somewhere south of Burlington. The tree line lay twenty yards in one direction and a quarter mile in the other; it was a warm green October afternoon and the ravens were cussing the insects, demanding that they sit still, and the acrid smell of smoked meat wafted from Vermont BBQ’s stand like an invitation written in reddish brown all over the front of your shirt. Keith, our vegetarian, slumbered through the whole thing on the van’s back bench, which is a little longer than the other benches. About a foot longer; but that foot counts.

Vegetarians should absolutely slumber in the van when their party stops at Vermont BBQ, for there’s little at Vermont BBQ to interest the carniphobe. The slaw is tasty enough, and the four soda varieties represent the best of the international soda consortiums’ blends, and there’s a cheese quesadilla on the menu, but it isn’t an accident that the small mobile premises of Vermont BBQ are dominated by a no-nonsense coal-black pit barbecue roughly the size and shape of a grown beef cow.

After some initial quibbling over whether this was the right time of day for lunch and whether appetites should be saved for the infamous smoked meats of Montreal, Chris and Danny decided to roll the dice-shaped pig bones. Chris ordered the pulled pork sandwich, and said he’d take his slaw on the sandwich when the proprietor offered that option. Danny, sensing the opportunity to lay chips down on a winning bet, asked for the same thing.

The proprietor was chummy and talkative. She guessed that we were a band and told us about the time Levon Helm’s band came by. It was a good story, but it’s hers to tell -you’ll have to visit VT BBQ to hear it.

As she talked we watched her scoop drippy pulled pork out of a warming pan and build intimidating piles on our griddle-toasted buns (not our asses! the sandwich rolls that VT BBQ uses). She served us the sandwiches in paper trays with our slaw in dixie cups on the side. What happened to slaw “on the sandwich,” we don’t know. Likely she offered up that possibility simply to hear our responses, never actually intending to follow through. The ways that a person will go about trying to entertain herself when her job corrals her in a filling station parking lot all day are a mystery to us, and will, god willing, always remain so.

But the sandwich, it was really good. Danny fucking loved his, and Chris thought that if he was the kind of guy to fucking love almost everything that allowed itself to be eaten, he’d have felt the same. Instead he quietly thrilled at the fine luck of stumbling onto a delicious hot sandwich when all you were expecting was a 99¢ bag of mealy nuts and a Vitamin Water (the official lunch of Failure). We told the proprietor we’d come back next time we were in the area; she suggested we check her website for updated location info in case planned retail development displaces her. Apparently a Pizza Hut is in the works, which will make at least the ravens happy since it will mean lots more insects. On the downside, it’ll also mean roving hordes of rats, who will surely devour any raven eggs they come across. And of course, the local human population will suffer obesity and miscellaneous plague. We hope, for their sake, that Vermont BBQ doesn’t move far.

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SILK CITY DINER & LOUNGEView

435 Spring Garden St
Philadelphia, PA 19123
(215) 592-8838

3/5 stars

Moments after we walked through the front door at Silk, Danny realized his hiatus-ing band, Youth Group, had played there. Half of the premises at Silk is devoted to a nightclub that was closed during our visit (Sunday, brunch), but according to Danny, ultraviolet lighting and “Heavy Metal” inspired bong art on the walls led his band to spend every moment they weren’t onstage in the diner.

Silk’s diner has an indoor area decorated traditionally -aluminum walls, booths with red vinyl covered cushions, a bar with fixed metal stools and a formica counter -and an outdoor garden featuring architecturally-integrated sculpture that calls to mind Gaudí and Jimi Hendrix album art.

We sat inside, and, with the exception of the service, had a good meal. The menu consists of standbys – a 2-egg plate, griddle standards, huevos rancheros -and more original fare: turkey breast & cheddar on biscuits w/ turkey gravy and ‘browns, and some kind of duck-motivated version of the same dish; foie gras & asparagus scrapple, and a red quinois scrapple; a pork bun side ($4); and some cocktails with goofy names. Chris had the turkey breast & biscuits and liked it, thought the potatoes were flavorful and a necessary addition to the plate’s palette. Keith and Danny both got the Silk Scramble, which mixed eggs with red onion, potato, guacamole, monterey jack cheese, & chorizo (which Keith had held). Keith called his scramble “on the very tasty side of bland, with high-grade ingredients,” and thought “the biscuit was a welcome counterpoint bite.” Danny fucking loved his. The table also split an order of French toast, which Keith found “curiously dense”, in a way that made him wonder if the bread was past its prime. Chris thought it was a “commendable” french toast, and thought the density was deliberate, desirable, and probably not accomplished through aging. This was Danny’s first French toast, and he fucking loved it, frankly.

Danny also went for a bloody mary, which he said was “extra good” -spicy, with lots of welcome solids (celery, olive, green tomato). Did he ever fucking love it. The coffee was mediocre, though the thick ceramic mugs did a better-than-average job of retaining heat. Keith noted that these premium mugs were necessary to mitigate the infrequency of coffee refills. Indeed, a political cartoon of Silk would show a fit, good-looking dude in his 20′s, hiply dressed, smiling at a group of pretty girls, yet walking with a pronounced limp, a large cast on one foot labeled “Service”. Our waiter was nice enough, but took a good long while to do anything. Our guess is that he intends to be a painter, spends his nights smoking and doing tiny Brueghel-inspired scenes of Philly, and half-consciously feels like being any good at his waiter job would be a betrayal of himself, of the Philly he loves, and worst of all, of Brueghel’s ghost. It should be noted that we have the vague and perhaps unjustified impression that service in Philadelphia is always bad. If true, that gets Silk off the hook, though it spells bigger problems for the city where Silk does business.

Bathrooms were fine. The “20 minute” wait only took 10 minutes. Should you wish to commemorate your visit to Silk, t-shirts are available for a very reasonable $5. Definitely give Silk a shot next time you’re trying to go to Honey’s on a weekend and decide you don’t feel like hanging out in that restaurant’s refugee camp-inspired waiting area.

(All three of us concur with this review.)

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CHILI’S BAR & GRILLView

827 Odd Fellows Rd
Crowley, LA 70526
(337) 783-1493

1/5 stars

This is probably the worst meal we’ve ever had on the road. There are only two things affirmative to be said about this place: our waitress, despite being a total flake and pretty disagreeable, had a nice accent; and none of us got sick (although we all felt kind of hungover afterward, like we had let our bodies down).

We were lured to Chili’s by a vague memory of decent margaritas enjoyed at the Odessa, TX, Chili’s two years ago. Difficult to say if we were remembering wrong or if the Crowley Chili’s is just breaking all kinds of franchise regulations and making all of the food and drinks by reconstituting powder. Whatever the case, we sat down wanting more than anything to like the margaritas. We flipped through the over-elaborate cocktail menu like doe-eyed ingenues on the evening of their 21st birthdays, cooing and gasping with anticipation. We settled on the “World’s Freshest Margarita”, which in retrospect we realize was given its name as a sinister prank. The 15 minutes it took for the margs to come out was, we told ourselves, promising – the bartender must be slicing and squeezing limes, carefully measuring proportions, chilling glasses, gently salting rims, etc. In fact, he was in the bathroom smelling his own farts and graffiti-ing the walls with huge-cocked trolls. Then he emptied one packet of the “W.F. Marg” powder into some hot water, stirred it with a cheese-encrusted spoon, and poured the urine-colored result over ice. Our margaritas were absolutely terrible. There is no reason for these margaritas to exist in the world. They are as tragic and unnecessary in 2010 as death by polio.

Even after having the skull of our expectations caved in by the jackbooted margaritas, we retained enough sensation to be upset by the food. If you were on a budget airline, and the food cart rolled up, and the flight attendant told you the food was all “south west” themed, and you bought some of it, you would be served the exact same thing Chili’s serves (and probably at the same price). The food ranged from an impossibly bland house salad to a vulgar plate of carnitas tacos, to a bean burger that Keith called “a glimpse into the depravity man is capable of committing when he’s unchecked in the middle of the bayou.”  All of it was reconstituted from powder by a droid in the kitchen.

It’s worth noting that Chili’s awful food is matched by awful service, so at least it can boast of having a certain perverse coherence. After the insane wait for drinks, our salads came out spaced at regular 5 minute intervals, affording that much-desired private dining experience, though you be a table with friends. Probably the sporadic pacing is the result of the droid in the kitchen having only a single pincer apparatus at its disposal – certainly a droid like Wall-E would have had no problem prepping the food in a more orderly fashion.

If this Chili’s had been about 25% better, we could easily say that we’d never go to another Chili’s again as long as we live. It was so bad, though, that we’re now compelled to visit another location in order to verify that the Crowley site was not a bizarre anomaly, possibly the result of a satanic curse transmitted by Li Grand Zombi when he was unable to get a table at the ante-curse, totally-okay Crowley Chili’s.

[3 out of 3 of us agree with this review]

Read full review   Visit our Yelp! page

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Advice

W.A.S! I have recently graduated from university and have no idea what I want to do with my life. I studied Psychology and got a good grade but I don’t want to do anything with it. Please help.

King Regards, Harry

Dear Harry: There are so, so, so many interesting jobs for you to consider. What an exciting crossroads you’ve come to! It is a crossroads with literally around four thousand different paths winding off in different directions. Pause for a second to picture that. You’re ambling down a dusty dirt road in 1300′s Europe, maybe even driving a couple of oxen from the back of a shitty old wagon. You round a small bend in the road and lean back against the reigns – “whoaaaaa…,” you tell your beasts. You gaze ahead, confused, slightly panicked. In front of you, peeling off from the main road you’ve been following for months now, lie over four thousand different paths. Which-the-hell one goes to Genoa, or wherever you’re off to?!?

Fortunately, Harry, that analogy isn’t entirely accurate. Whereas only one of those dusty trails led to Genoa, any of the exciting career paths now before you has the potential to lead to Happiness, Productivity, & Moderate Wealth (incidentally, the municipal motto of present day Genoa). Let’s take a look at some of the options:

  • Police Man: Help keep people safe by enforcing law and order.
  • Chef: Prepare food to nourish and delight customers.
  • Fisherman: Steal fish from Poseidon.
  • Commercial Airplane Pilot: Wear a uniform in the air.
  • School Teacher: Possess different colors of chalk and wear shoes to work.
  • Fashion Model: Inspire, inform, intrigue, and engage the public.
  • Government Official: Shepherd society toward a golden tomorrow.
  • Medical Doctor: Invent an army of super soldiers to destroy our enemies in other galaxies.
  • Scientist: Study voltage and pressure change.
  • Travel Host: Determine optimal programming for an evening film.
  • Waiter: Suggest alternatives to the usual gruel.
  • Researcher: Gather and sift through mountains of data to glean widely applicable truths.
  • Can Maker: Manufacture and ration cans.
  • Book Binder: Inspect bindings in a library environment to predict longevity.
  • Towel Merchant: Escort towels through the transition from wholesale to retail environments.
  • Mortgage Broker: Upgrade families from tent-like domiciles to more robust structures.
  • Still don’t see anything that seems right for you, Harry? That was just a tiny sampling of the many options available, friend — don’t lose hope! Perhaps you could own a business, operate a warehouse, or advise large companies. Why not become a sculptor, a minister, or a baseball agent? Not so fast! We haven’t even told you about shark hunters, racing form artists, and galleon henchmen. The point is, life’s full of a delirious array of options, and you really can’t go wrong. The salary for all the jobs we’ve mentioned so far is $1000, enough to keep you in chewing gum and candy cigarettes till you’re well into your eighties.

    Feeling better? Thought so. Hey, Harry, just do us one favor in return: let us know how it all turns out.

    Best,
    W.A.S.

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