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Online fundraising for Christmas Club '13

Hope you had a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, or at least a solid run of mental days off this past week. Thanks to everybody who participated in Christmas Club this year, we’ve raised over $2,000 for City Harvest, which by their metric will save and deliver over 8,000 POUNDS of food for hungry New Yorkers. (Although it’s not too late to donate!)

This year saw dramatic, record demand for food in New York, and City Harvest is currently at 62% of its 30-30-30 campaign goal – that’s no Herman Cain slogan, they’re celebrating their 30th anniversary by rescuing 30 million pounds of food and raising $30 million! And together we’ve been a part of that. Once the goals are met, the organization will build a brand new facility in Long Island City, and over the coming years double their capacity to a staggering 60 million pounds of food per year.

On a personal note, I must say I was especially thankful that many of you rolled with the spontaneous schedule and calamitous state of my home after a humdinger of a Thanksgiving.


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Merry Christmas from Iggy Pop


Iggy speaks for himself (well, and his bird and twin dogs).

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It's The Jingle Cats!

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New Yorkers are famous for walking around with their blinders up, sidestepping dead bodies, and jaywalking like they’re invincible. Not Christmas Caroling. (With the exception of SantaCon, where the words are changed to genitalia slang.) So Billy on the Street and Parks & Recreation stars Billy Eichner and Amy Poehler donned Dickensian garb to entice the city of New York to sing carols for a dollar. The results were a little icy.

The Christmas of Nintendo

Amidst the sensory overload of PS4 and Xbox One ads, it’s worth rewinding from charmless eighth generation consoles to the awe we all felt for the third. From 1990.


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Democracy Now remembered Lou Reed this week with this 2008 performance, from a St. Ann’s Warehouse benefit for Iraq Veterans Against the War, accompanied by his partner Laurie Anderson. They played his Vietnam vet’s lament “Xmas in February”, from the great New York album, before Moby and Antony joined them onstage for “Voices of Freedom”. The recording isn’t ideal, but it’s worth watching since Lou never sang a song the same way twice. Nobody ever will.

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Sarah Palin is Having a Christmas Breakdown

292889oHalf-term Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin has a book coming out November 12th. While its title, “Good Tidings and Great Joy” and this promotional interview with Ralph Reed may appear all kinds of “festive, joyful,” for the first 30 seconds, that’s all a misdirect. “The heart of” her recipe book is about preventing “angry atheists armed with an attorney” from censoring whether we’re allowed to say Merry Christmas to one another.

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Pretty sure there aren’t any laws about what pleasantries a private citizen is allowed to say, but if a ban went into effect, I’d happily be the Tim DeChristopher of saying Merry Christmas. After all, her argument is that, being from Alaska, she has “access to Santa Claus and all the good things that come with Christmas” and frankly that’s more plausible than seeing Putin’s evil eyes from her kitchen window.
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Christmas Spirit is one of those unquantifiables. We want that feeling of warmth, community, generosity, but the months turn cold, the bustle doesn’t relent, and the Duane Reade radio station is just BAD. Fortunately, like so many wintry things, the spirit is contagious. New York might have lost power, but we, the eighth year of The Christmas Club, generated Christmas Spirit like ConEd’s 14th Street command center gone supernova.

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Icicle face: Averted

Icicle face: Averted

You can’t put a dollar sign in front of that, but you might be interested to know we’ve donated more than $2000 to City Harvest this year! It costs City Harvest 27¢ to deliver a pound of food. With our donation alone they will put more than 7,400 pounds of food into the hands of the hungry.

Really can’t go overboard about the timeliness of all this giving. This is still a recession, and the destruction wrought by Hurricane Sandy put many over the edge. Our charity, City Harvest, is one of the biggest and best local resources of its kind, rescuing and donating food to hungry New Yorkers. Just since Sandy they’ve collected 6.6 MILLION pounds of food, dispensing it through continued hurricane relief operations, soup kitchens and shelters.

Online fundraising for The Christmas Club Supports City Harvest 2012

More good news: if you forgot, our Christmas Club fundraiser on Razoo doesn’t end until New Year’s. You’ve got some Obamacare tax conspiracy you wanna dodge, right? Feed the world! Let them know it’s Christmas time!

Plus, should you get bored of Christmas with the Rat Pack the third time through, we’re rounding out the 2012 Christmas Club EP by my friends and yours, The Good Tidings. “Jingle Bells” features F.O. the Canadian B. Li Cornfeld and my brother “the talented Snyder” John, with a ca-meow appearance by the melodic miniature miss Mae, and a weird sign-off by my Dad, ‘ere he drove out of sight.

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“Sorry, I printed the lyrics of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” begins the Power 105.1 DJ.

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“I KNOW THE LYRICS!” cries DMX, busting out a beatbox and accompanying Rudolph performance that goes viral the moment it leaves his lips.

He does get a little carried away with his interjections of “C’MON”, “FOREVER” and his trademark “WHAT”, and accidentally switches Rudolph’s role from “guide” to “ride my sleigh tonight”. But

it might be a bit of intentional innuendo. That’s how Ruff Ryders roll.

DMX is just a kid at heart. A kid that loves Christmas, and Cocoa Puff sweet bitches. (Incidentally this is a man with TEN kids of his own.)

So naturally the internet (YouTube user Andrew Spena) got to work transforming the rapper into viagra professional the King of the Island of Misfit Toys, King Moonracer from the classic Rankin-Bass 1964 TV Rudolph special.

No, he’s not Snoop Lion. He’s got wings. He’s a DMX Griffin.

Mechanical Reproduction, eg. the “orgasmatron” in Woody Allen’s Sleeper

I love Christmas music. I’m no musician, but I love learning to play Christmas music, because by and large, it’s easy. The songs are simple and indelible. “Silent Night” would never have been passed down through nearly 200 years of culture if the chords changed every note like an Elvis Costello song. And look, Elvis Costello is great, but he is lucky we live in The Age of Mechanical Reproduction.

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Now Jimmy Fallon, whom I understand has some kind of talk show, was introduced to the world as the Saturday Night Live cast member who couldn’t handle it. He was charming, but he was more famous for his inability to stand next to Horatio Sanz without breaking down and tearing off his facial hair.

On the other hand, with the inclusion of The Roots, Fallon’s edition of Late Night does have something pretty credible — no offense, Max Weinberg 7 — a band with whom the musical guests actually want to jam. This being network TV, the guests run the gamut from Neil Young to Carly Rae Jepsen, whose “Call Me Maybe” with The Roots’ accompaniment on “Classroom Instruments” has got 12 million views to date.

Recreating that childlike magic last night, with Mariah Carey at his side, performing the best-known contemporary Christmas song hands down, poor ol’ Jimmy Fallon could not maintain the tempo to save his life. That kind of breakdown, I can relate to.

The Roots’ drummer and arranger ?uestlove said of the Jepsen cover, “I played a flute that apparently I forgot which end to play it on. So I failed in my debut as a flautist. I failed. But that’s what makes the show fun.” This might explain why Jimmy is equipped with a mallet, snare drum, wood block and tambourine, while ?uest quietly taps on his comb. The fact that Fallon is as good at bungling songs as SNL sketches — well, at least it’s consistent. And you have to respect his willingness to blush this much on TV.

Comedy is a man in trouble.