November 20, 2013

This Evening: Modern Love(r)

>>> There’s a double-header going on at Union Transfer tonight: In an early show (7PM doors), Johnathan Richman (The Modern Lovers, Johnathan Richman and the Modern Lovers, Jonathan Richman) will play a set, drawing on his forty-plus of musical experience. Later (9:30PM doors) indie-noisers Sleigh Bells take the stage with support from Doldroms.
>>> Over at L’Etage, you can class your night up a bit with a free screening of Le Cercle Rouge.
>>> And for a film of a different kind, PhilaMOCA is hosting the Philadelphia premiere screening of Men In Suits, a documentary about the men behind the masks of some of Hollywood’s most well-known monsters.

Right Now In The People’s Republic Of Comcast: 50 Years Of Sweet Motherfucking Bowties

comcast 50
Just keep talkin’ Williams, or that arrow will go right where it’s pointed.

Hey everyone, Comcast is 50 years old, and we watched their entire clip-reel/”yay us” video so you don’t have to. Here’s basically what it features:

>>> Lots of bowties
>>> Ryan Seacrest
>>> Brian Williams narrating the whole thing, and proving there’s nothing he can do that will make us dislike him
>>> Tina Fey saying the timing of Comcast’s purchase of NBC was perfect because “[at 30 Rock] we needed a whole new source of jokes”
>>> More bowties
>>> Bob Costas
>>> Did we mention bowties?

We’re a little bummed that the people at Kabletown didn’t come to us for our input on the copy for this thing, but we guess they’d have rather kept the words “empire,” “monopoly,” and “overlord of Philadelphia” out of the video. Their loss.

Now Is The Time To Cast Your Nominations For The 2013 #philebrityawards


With the end of the year, and the holiday season, it’s that time again: With input from you, our cherished readers along with a top secret panel of experts and weirdos, we’re choosing their favorites in a variety of categories for The 2013 Philebrity Awards. And as we’ve done over the last few years, we’ll also be featuring some of the city’s most beloved music and comedy talents for a two-fisted awards/holiday show that is unlike any other in the city. The resulting event, The Philebrity Awards & Xmas Pageant on Thursday December 19 at Johnny Brenda’s, celebrates the best (and a little bit of the worst) of this fair city, from those in the arts and media to those more unsung heroes in the non-profit/do-gooding world. Best of Philly this ain’t: It’s not about buying shit, people and things from the suburbs are gloriously, totally ignored and even the event itself is free to attend. What it is, rather, is a raucous holiday melange of music, comedy and the can-do spirit that makes Philadelphia one of the greatest cities in the world.

Now here’s where you come in: Polls go live on November 25th, and from now until then, we’ll be collecting nomination suggestions for inclusion on those polls. This year’s categories are as follows:

· Non-Profit Of The Year

· New Musical Artist Of The Year

· Comedian/Comedy Act Of The Year*

· Festival Or Gathering Of The Year

· Philadelphia Writer Of The Year*

· The Philebrity Award For General Fabulousness

· New Business Of The Year*

· Phoodie Of The Year

· Outstanding Do-Gooder(s) Of The Year


NOTE: A “*” indicates a category that is NEW or MODIFIED since last year. That’s right, we did away with Print Publication of the Year and swapped in Best Comedian. It seemed… apt. You can see last year’s nominees and winners here.

Tomorrow on our Twitter account, we’ll be posing each category as a question, and looking for nominee suggestions from you! If you’ve got a nominee suggestion then or now, Tweet it with the hashtag #philebrityawards. We’ll be looking for them. Let the games begin!


An Amtrak Train From Philly To New York Got Lost Which Is Apparently Possible

AmtrakLogo-2Yes, it’s on rails. And yes, it can supposedly, somehow, get lost: An Amtrak train that was headed from 30th Street Station to Penn Station in New York City, ended up somewhere in the suburbs instead. Here’s exactly what happened, according to Amtrak:

On November 14, 2013 at approximately 11:45 a.m., Amtrak Train 644 inadvertently operated onto the SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) Cynwyd Line, traveling several miles before safely coming to a stop.”

The CBS report also quoted some total selfish jerk who said “I’m glad it wasn’t mine,” but yeah, we totally agree. Also, “Amtrak has launched an investigation and they’re keeping the crew responsible out of work until they can be fully debriefed and retrained.” Yeah, and maybe get them a GPS, or a map, or a compass, or just instructions on HOW NOT TO GET LOST WHEN YOU’RE DRIVING A TRAIN. Those will all help.

Guys There Was A Rocket In The Sky Last Night Did You See The Rocket In The Sky?

Witnessing a rocket launch whilst on the beach in Wildwood was pretty much how we’d hoped to euphemize our date with that boardwalk pizza shop waitress all those years ago at senior week. Well, with the tweet above we have grown wistful for those Wildwood days and oh those Wildwood nights – all Saturdays, natch. Though we ourselves saw a muted version of this launch from Fishtown — basically a receding orange dot washed out by the streetlights that will illuminate the new 15 trolley’s route along Richmond St. — it is that bright terrific photograph of Orbital Sciences’ Minotaur 1 rocket that last night launched a record 29 satellites into orbit that has us quoting Langston Hughes this crisp Autumnal day:

What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore–
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over–
like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?


Let WHYY Break Down Lushlife’s “Toynbee Suite” For You, And Then Go Download The Track

There’s a lot going on with Lushlife‘s “Toynbee Suite” — there’s not only the song itself, and the recording and production of a 12-minute rap epic with four movements, but the whole history of the Toynbee Tiles themselves. The tiles had already inspired years of confusion and mystery for the locals who noticed them — a full-length doc — and now there’s a rap-epic you can added to that list.

Peter Crimmins at WHYY does a pretty solid job of breaking all of that down in a short, four-minute piece (above) on the tiles and Lushlife’s product of their inspiration. You can also hop on over here to Weathervane Music for the behind-the-scenes video and audio download of “Toynbee Suite.” The whole thing is impressive, not only in scope and ambition, but in actual quality. Check it out.

Get All Cultured Up At L’Etage’s New Free Foreign Cinema Night

le cine

We know how it is, you wanna watch all those foreign films Netflix recommends for you, but also, Thor is right there. We totally get it. But there’s no excuse tonight, when L’Etage kicks off their (now) monthly foreign film night, for free. Kicking the series off with Jean-Pierre Melville’s Le Cercle Rouge tonight at 8PM, the screenings feature free admission along with the “full Creperie Beau Monde menu and full bar, beer and wine list.” Just watch your intake there, cause you’re gonna have to read those subtitles.

Noontime Nuggetz: C.O.B. Mob, “Tory Burch”

“Rap game HOT ALERT, Tory Burch!” Um, this is the new collab between Ryder Ripps and Hennessy Youngman, finally bringing rap game cred to Philly’s own Tory Burch. Think of her as Tupac meets Lily Pultizer, nahmean? [h/t BullettMedia]

Everybody Relax, Bribery May Finally Become Legal In Philly

The, er, ETHICS BOARD will be trying to decide on this today. No, really.

Dept. Of Meaningless Lists: Philly Ranks As 6th Worst City In America, According To Some Bullshit Website

If it’s on, you know it must be… on a website somewhere:


Hey, put your face next to my ass for a second, I got your area vibes right here, Jack.

Karen Heller Just Said What We’ve Been Saying About The Pool Of 2015 Mayoral Hopefuls, Only More Succinctly

On the occasion of Little Franny Rizzo dipping his footsie-wootsies into the tepid, mosquito-laden, dank-ass puddle that is the 2015 Philadelphia mayoral race, Heller was moved to make the following observation, re-printed here in a size that past, present and future City Council brainsucks should be able to read:

We should be deeply troubled by Philadelphia’s staggering, depressing lack of rising political talent, no depth on the bench or outstanding rookies in the field. It’s not clear there even is a bench or field. Every time I look at the pool of likely mayoral candidates, I want to curl up in a fetal position and take a nap. Instead of excitement, a young crusader, an enlightened outsider, even a self-financed Bloombergian billionaire, we get Son Ofs, Also Rans, Has Beens, and Never Weres.

Preach it, sister. And also: Ouch. Somebody do something! Please!

Dept. Of (Slightly) Fuzzy Logic: How Ori Feibush Is Like Tom Corbett And How They Are Both Like Ronald Reagan

tcofOne could argue — if one had interest in arguing such things — that the reason developer Ori Feibush (now City Council candidate, natch) has been able to exert such a stranglehold over the Point Breeze neighborhood has been that his opposition, up until now, has been such a shitshow. There’s been shouting. There’s been race-baiting flyers posted. There’s been all kinds of noise. But in the middle of it, the whole time, there have also been legitimate arguments to be made about gentrification, and how it’s playing out in Point Breeze. And they’ve been hard to hear amidst the thrum produced both by neighbors and not least Pistol Packin’ Ori himself.

If you have an interest in them, perhaps take a look at this lengthy blog post by the Point Breeze Organizing Committee. And yes, take it with a grain of salt, but only the size of the grain you should also be reserving for Feibush. (Which is to say, a giant, crack-sized rock of salt.) The PBOC here is looking at Corbett and Feibush from a strictly social justice perspective here, while also admitting some of its neighborhood’s own faults, which brought Point Breeze to the tense situation it’s in today:

Like Ronald Reagan, Feibush has been successful in building racially tinged narratives and cultivating identification with him and his leadership. Many new residents, even-progressive minded people identify with Feibush.

We – the Point Breeze Organizing Committee, in the past, had made the mistake of feeding into this dynamic, for example, we were wrong to ever suggest the issue was “yuppies moving in.” And we must be crystal clear at every opportunity that our beef is not with new people moving in, but rather with developers who place profits above people. With this clarity that has emerged through dialogue with new residents and older residents, the question of our objectives have been brought into focus: We must build the broadest possible principled unity around the general welfare of all residents and protection against economic displacement of any residents.

A bit much? Maybe. Then again, maybe not. And in any case, the comparison only goes so far. We remember Ronald Reagan. And let us tell you: Tom Corbett? Ori Feibush? They’re no Ronald Reagans.

Previously: Ori Feibush Straight Up Lied To Us, Will Be Running For City Council After All, Absolutely Does Not Have Our Vote Or Anything Like It

The Little Goldenberg’s Peanut Chew Van Is So Cute We Want To Put The Whole Thing In Our Mouths


Is there a Christmas tree ornament version of this thing? THERE OUGHTA BE.

November 19, 2013


While the rest of you are making little dance remixes of the George Zimmerman “Uhhhhhh… I just want everyone to know the truth” soundbite on your Casio SK-1′s, Mayor Michael Nutter has been tweeting up a storm, heavily desirous of the man/plan/Panama effect:

Nutter’s down in Panama, you see, with Joe The Biden and others on a two-day tour of the Panama Canal expansion project. And he’s apparently liking what he sees, calling for more more dredging of the Delaware (as of last June, 60% of a current dredging project was already done), even though both Delaware and New Jersey pols aren’t so hot on the idea and environmentalists even less so. Nevertheless, Nutter clearly has the boat bug. Too bad Hess doesn’t make ‘em each Christmas.

Local Punk Band’s Sweet, Sweet Walk Down Philly’s Memory Lane

On the surface, it’s a music video by local punk band D.T.O, brought to you by the folks at But it’s so much more. It’s a bittersweet stroll through all of Philly’s “finest” moments. You’ve got your classics like the M.O.V.E bombing, Eagle game snowballs, an agitated Rizzo, the World Series riots, and the Columbia Ave. riots. Throw in the afterschool specials of the your childhood and some general looting, and you can’t get any more nostalgic. We are disappointed that the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 and the Kensington Riots of 1844 weren’t included.

And maybe it’s just us, but have the Mummers ever looked so… unsettling and goddamn creepy?

Today’s Time Killer: That Bob Dylan Video Everyone Is Putting On Your Facebook Wall

And if everyone isn’t doing it already, they will: Today, Bob Dylan released the first official video for “Like A Rolling Stone” that is totally interactive, and absolutely wacky. It works like your digital cable TV, and you can switch between 16 different channels, all of varying content, where everyone on screen is mouthing along to the words. There’s a fictional reality show, a sports broadcast, some BBC news, the dudes from Pawn Stars, Marc Maron, Drew Carey on The Price is Right, and more. It really is incredible, and you can check it out over here. Now if you’ll excuse us, we’ll be messing around with it for the next hour or so.

You Think The PPA Is Bad? A Pilot Near Pittsburgh Got A $3,000 Bill For Landing His Plane On The Turnpike

PA-Turnpike-LogoYou think that $26 ticket for overstaying your welcome in a 2-hour zone is excessive? Imagine landing your plane on the PA Turnpike and then getting a bill for $3,000. Actually, is that a lot? We’re not sure what the going rate for “you landed your airplane on a road and we had to tow it away” usually is?

According to Reuters, “A pilot who landed his small plane on a rural stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike after its propeller fell off is protesting a $3,000 bill he received for towing his aircraft from the roadway, saying such fees could cause other pilots to seek out more dangerous emergency landing options.” More dangerous? Like in a field? Or … we dunno, this is why we mistrust airplanes. The pilot, who noted his (and his co-pilot’s) snap-decision, said “We had only a few minutes before we became a projectile heading toward Earth,” which is just a truly terrible though for anyone to have to process. After the landing, in which no one was hurt, a spokesperson for the Turnpike said “we treated it like any other accident,” which it most definitely was not. And this is what is happening on the other side of the state.

The Upper Darby Police Department Twitter Account Is Great, But Is It Better Than #PoopIsntWorthPrison?

Yes, that’s an official account: The Upper Darby Police Department — previously mostly known as “where Chitwood is never too far from a microphone” — has taken to Facebook and Twitter to help solve crimes, find lost dogs, and send sassy tweets like the one above. And this one. And this one. It’s pretty wonderful, and seriously, it’s a public service. On top of actually reaching out and communicating with the people they serve, these accounts break down (a little bit) the barrier that naturally sits between the citizen and the police (especially if said citizen is the one that just got pulled over). Also, they retweeted this wonderful Center City Chitwood donut selfie, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

So, nice work UDPD, but the most important question remains: Is it better than #PoopIsntWorthPrison?

Noontime Nuggetz: Cosby Comeback, Part 2

As nervous as we are about the Cos’ upcoming Comedy Central special, his appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last night reminded us that we’d be everyday viewers of Bill Cosby Messes with The Roots.

Write-In Votes Missing In Races To Decide Who Runs Polling Places

It’s not quite Obama-wall, but few things are.

Even when the election day itself is less than eventful, like our most recent one was, you know something had to happen. And that something was that “election officials in Philadelphia say they can’t find paper tapes identifying the write-in votes recorded in 15 voting divisions.” Funnily — or is it just the Philadelphia way — those races were to decide judge of elections and inspector, also known as the people who run those polling places.

According to the AP, “If the tapes can’t be located, officials say, it will be impossible to say who won the posts Nov. 5, so they will be vacant and must be filled by future volunteers.” Which was probably the plan of the scheming, evil, world-domination-minded election volunteers all along.