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March 2005

TMH Technology Roundup
shut me up | Thursday, 03.24.05
Gather round little dogies, it's time for a good ol' fashion technology roundup and I'm not sure why I'm writing like a cowboy because the most advanced technology that a cowboy had was a dried up clump of horse shit that he would use to remove fresh horse shit from the bottom of his boots. Yeeeeee-HAW! I buy lots of useless gadgets and gizmos because it makes me feel like a man, and god knows I need to feel like a man every once in a while. Next week I'll be reviewing doilies and beautiful bedspreads, so feel free to skip this week's update.

Sony Ericsson K700i
You'd think I had a lot of people to call with the amount of cell phones that I go through every year, but I probably make about three calls a week, and I'm usually either calling Rachel to complain about my cell phone or the cell phone store to complain about my cell phone. But not this time! Fed up with the lack of variety in American phones, I decided to span the globe for a phone that makes all of my dreams come true. And I found it... on the internet of all places! The Sony Ericsson K700i comes with all sorts of crazy features that Americans simply can't handle... like, uh... tasteful ringtones... and, um... LOOK, IT COST $300, IT'S A VERY GOOD PHONE AND IT ADDS SIX INCHES TO THE WIDTH OF MY PENIS.

You may remember that I bought a new cell phone around this time last year, which I somehow managed to drop 170 times within the first 24 hours of ownership. Turns out that would be the least of my problems, as I soon find out that the Samsung E715's screen tends to fade and suck dick after a few months of use. I found a site that buys piece of shit cellphones, but I think painting it yellow, soaking it in banana juice and tossing it into the monkey tank at the Central Park zoo would be much more satisfying because I hate that phone, and I like watching monkeys choke on inedible objects.

Pros: Beautiful non dick-sucking display. Built in radio/mp3 player. Magical Bluetooth voodoo. tasteful ringtones.
Cons: It's not a flip, so my pocket may be making some calls to Pakistan if I don't turn on the key lock.
Arbitrary rating: 784/785

Nintendo DS
In 1977, Kenner toys was caught completely offguard during the holiday season. They were one of the few companies who could produce licensed Star Wars merchandise, but they had no idea that this wacky sci-fi movie would be such a success. So, since they didn't have any toys ready for release, they sold an empty box to young nerds with a slip of paper inside that promised they would get three or four figures as soon as they were available. Kind of a weird strategy, but in the end, everyone was happy. The nerds got their toys, Kenner (probably) made a boatload of money, and George Lucas grew a fourth neck to celebrate.

Now, it's 2005, and Nintendo seems to be in a similar situation. They release the Nintendo DS in time for the 2004 holiday season with only one decent game available at launch, and it's a port of a classic N64 game. But they promise that some new and exciting games are on the way! Hooray! Yeah, it's April now and we don't have shit. I bought ZooKeeper because I play the Flash version when I'm bored, but the $35 DS version doesn't add much more variety than the free Flash version (but at least I don't have to send hits to ebaumsworld to play it). Using a stylus as a controller is an interesting concept, and it works great for ZooKeeper, but I couldn't get the hang of it in Mario 64. The directional pad works fine, but Mario 64 was made for a real analog stick.

There's a new Castlevania game in the works, as well as talks of a new Katamari Damacy game, but other than that, I basically bought an empty Nintendo DS that can play GBA games (which I've played more than any DS-exclusive title).

Pros: Great battery life (possibly because I play ZooKeeper for 20 minutes at a time). Mario 64 is still fun. Plays GBA games.
Cons: No fucking games. Controlling Mario with a stylus is retarded. Wait a second, there was one other thing... oh yeah, NO FUCKING GAMES.
Arbitrary rating: 632/2000

iPod Shuffle
Apple: See, it's just like your regular iPod, except it holds less songs, it has no screen, and it randomizes your playlists by default.
Me: Well, I don't really see-
Apple: We'll sell it to you for $150.
Me: I'll take 12.

With its ridiculously small size and lack of moving parts, the iPod Shuffle is perfect for me when I'm at the gym. Finally, I can get thrown from the treadmill without worrying about how badly I just broke my mp3 player by landing on it ass or headfirst. Now I can just pick myself back up, dust myself off, get back on the machine and continue listening to Slayer's Reign in Blood in peace. Until I get thrown from the machine again.

I turn heads when I walk into the gym wearing this thing. Lots of guys want to shake my hand, get my number and rape me in the ass while I'm getting changed. They ask me questions like, "Where can I get one of those?" and "I hope this doesn't sound gay, but would you mind if I tried impregnating you?" They make me really uncomfortable, but I need a spotter, and aside from the whole raping me and stealing my iPod thing, they're really nice guys.

The iPod Shuffle is a wonderful little toy. It holds a decent amount of songs and shuffles the hell out of them. Plus, if you demand order in your life, you can set the iPod to play everything in your predefined order... which is great if you can remember that track 118 is Simple Mind's Don't You Forget About Me and don't mind hitting the >> button 118 times. For god's sake, don't be a whiny slashdotter and just shuffle the goddamn songs. "Well, y'know I don't really like this product because it doesn't have a screen and it doesn't run Linux and I don't want to shuffle my songs because that is simply preposterous and I hope you enjoyed my posting on slashdot.com.org.net because my first class armor troll was just slaughtered in EverQuest as I was typing this and I'm going to attend his funeral with my Level 47 e-wife."

Pros: Small, sexy and affordable. Shuffles songs like nobody's business. Great battery life.
Cons: "What is Slashdot now, a billboard for Apple? Creative Labs or iRiver puts out a new product, it doesn't even get mentioned. Apple rehashes one of their shittiest players, and introduces something hardly revolutionary for an extremely inflated price, and it makes the front page. I don't understand." -- A concerned slashdot patron.
Arbitrary rating: Pat Smear/Dave Grohl

The BrainDent.com interview
ego++ | Monday, 03.14.05
Sure, you check out TMH every day, but do you know the story behind the man, the myth, the... uh, guy who runs your favorite site? And if you didn't know the story, the myth or the guy, would you be tempted to click the giant banner below to get your learn on? Mike from BrainDent.com had a virtual sit down with yours truly to see what makes me tick, what makes me cry, and what makes me want to dance on top of squad cars while violently singing "Turning Japanese" by The Vapors. Mike asked the hard hitting questions that you need to read, so check out the interview! In fact, double click that shit so you get there faster.

You gotta brush yo' teefs or else you'll be funkay.
cha-ching cha-ching | Wednesday, 03.09.05
This is not my mouth. This is some random internet person's mouth, but I felt that it would add to the story. Let's all take a moment to thank this random internet person for having horrible, horrible teeth.
I'm like a lot of people who use the internet to obtain medicinal information: desperate, morbidly obese and terror-stricken. When searching for some information on wisdom tooth extraction, my search results left me less than satisfied, more than terrified and less than or equal to aggrafied. So much conflicting information. One site says, "Don't eat or drink anything for 8 days before or after the operation." Another site says, "Feel free to eat a sandwich during the operation." One site says, "After the operation, gently rinse your mouth out with salt water." Another site says, "After the operation, violently rinse your mouth out with salt water." My dentist gave me a sheet of paper full of post-operative instructions, and it just says, "Rinse with salt water." I AM A FAGGOTY IDIOT AND NEED MORE DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS PLEASE, DOCTOR. But instead of calling the dentist's office and looking like a pussy, I'd rather baffle myself with 750,000 conflicting websites, all run by other nancy-boy pussies who can barely play Magic: The Gathering without injuring themselves, let alone undergo major oral surgery.

Dentists are always impressed with my mouth because I've never had a cavity, never needed braces, nothing. Yet, instead of patting me on my head and telling me what a good boy I am, they're always like, "Well, you have a lucky mouth." Lucky? Hey, fuck you buddy. It takes skill to brush every three days with a toothbrush caked in food particles and toenail clippings and still have a perfect set of chompers. Pssh, lucky mouth. You're gonna have a lucky mouth when I'm done punching you in the face. Lucky, you see, because, it'll be lucky if, y'know, you still have teeth in your mouth when I'm through punching it. With my fists. In your face.

My reconstructive dentistry specialist is a really cool guy, though. He decided it would be best to take two of the wisdom teeth out at a time so that I would still be able to chew on the other side. He shot me full of novocain and went to work on those fuckers for a good half hour. The one on the bottom was so attached to my skull that it broke a piece of equipment. Let me repeat that... My goddamned tooth broke a piece of expensive dental equipment that is designed to remove teeth. Needless to say, I was impressed by my oral power. The dentist, however, was not, and decided to just flip the instrument over and beat the tooth with the handle until it surrendered. Throughout the operation, he kept asking me, "Are you on blood thinners?" And I kept replying, "Ngha ahga ng," which he interpreted as, "Yes, and I love it." There was some blood involved. But, after some pulling, twisting and asking nicely, the teeth were removed, my holes were packed with gauze and I was on my way home with the aforementioned set of instructions, a wad of extra gauze pads, and a prescription for Tylenol with codeine. And before you ask, no the drugs didn't take me to a wonderful place, or make me hallucinate or do anything other than make me feel dizzy and fall down a lot.

Now, SPIT!
I am insane when it comes to operational aftercare. Now, why is this? Because the last time I had an operation, I woke up with a steady stream of blood pouring out of my mouth and a one way ticket back to the emergency room to fix a fucked up tonsillectomy stitch. Not wanting a repeat of last year's slaughterhouse drama, I followed my sheet of instructions to the letter. I refrained from spitting or sucking for the first 24 hours, which was extremely difficult for me because I love cock. I packed gauze around the holes to induce clotting. I took a few of the codeine-laced pills before switching to regular Tylenol. Panic strikes when I wake up on the fourth day and still taste blood. Like an idiot, I turn to the internet and search for "wisdom teeth blood pain oh god please kill me." I read page after page of horror stories about the dreaded, murderous phenomenon of dry socket, which sounds as horrible as it is. Chances are, if you've got a case of the ol' dry socket, you have just enough time to inquire about purchasing a gun, sweat out the five day waiting period, blend up some of your favorite meals into a delicious lobster/steak smoothie, drink the smoothie, buy the gun and then remove yourself from your dry socketed world of pain with a bullet through the noggin. After scaring myself silly, I reviewed my sheet once again. I'm not sure if you can follow a set of instructions more to the letter, but somehow I did.

Now here's where my story will deviate from the rest of the horrified internet wisdom tooth extraction tales... everything's fine now. It's been 6 days, the bleeding has stopped (except for a hint of gunk in the morning hach), the pain is almost gone, and I'm now drinking the salt water instead of gently swishing it. The only thing that remains is the godawful stench that's leaking out of my mole holes, which probably means that something's infected, or I eat my own shit in my sleep. I'm really hoping it's just an infection, because according to the pharmacist at Walgreens, there's no antibiotic that curbs nocturnal shit ingestion. And the dude was wearing a lab coat, so I'm forced to assume that he knows what he's talking about.

And now, to scare the ever-loving crap out of random internet pussies through evil search engine hijinks...

I'm so sorry I had my wisdom teeth removed. First, there was the non-stop bleeding. It's three months later and my mouth is still bleeding but I don't have insurance so I'm just going to die. The dentist told me to rinse with Windex, which didn't help matters. I later found out that the dentist injected Kool-Aid instead of novocain. Also, I was molested during the operation. A few days after the surgery, I realized that the dentist removed my arms instead of my wisdom teeth, which are still bleeding as I type this, just in case you were wondering. I contacted another dentist, but he won't do the surgery because he's prejudiced against patients with no arms. This is a predicament that I am in, and I hope you never have to undergo this horrible life and arm altering surgery.

ARE YOU READY (to present to the Lord your tithes and offerings)?
ratamatatmamta | Monday, 03.07.05
Rock and/or Roll
I think it's great that the only interesting member of Korn has left the band to go play the seven string with Christ. Maybe I'm just bitter because they haven't produced anything even close to interesting for a decade, and now their chances are even more slim. Or, maybe I'm just bitter because I met them a few years ago, and they left a strange taste in my mouth.

When I was in high school, Korn was the bee's knees of angst-ridden rock. They had, in no particular order:

a) interesting hairstyles
b) easily emulated styles of dress
c) a fat man wearing a kilt, sobbing uncontrollably in between bagpipe solos

Imagine the megaboner I achieved when I found out that my heroes would be appearing at the Menlo Park Mall for an instore CD signing extravaganza! This was a few weeks after Follow the Leader came out, which marked the first of the truly awful Korn releases, though I wasn't really aware of this at the time. So my parents dropped me off in front of CD World amidst the other 15 - 17 year old Korn superfans and left for a day of shopping and general merriment. As I stood in line, waiting for the band to arrive, "eat lunch" and chat with the fans who had camped out for a year ahead of time, I tried to think of the conversation that I would have with each member. Should I call them by their pseudonyms? Should I ask for a hug? Should I--

My thoughts were interrupted as the first group of children to have their shit signed exited the store, mascara and glittery face paint streaming down their cheeks. "Jonathan isn't here!" exclaimed a portly mall goth in between manic breaths and panic attacks. Word spread quickly through the line that stretched well into the depths of the parking lot... the lead singer didn't show up because "his grandmother died." Whether that was true or not remains a mystery to me, but the cries of "bullshit!" errupted among the more ballsy superfans, and at the time, I couldn't have agreed more.

But, being the eternal optimist that I am, I decided that this was a blessing in disguise, because my love for the kilted bag pipe player would have been conveyed by either throwing up on him or shitting my pants and having security escort me, a broken mess of a human being, out of the building. After all, this was Korn! A group of 30-year-olds who understood the plight and drama of the day-to-day life of children half their ages. CD in hand, I trudged on, eventually making it into the store and within their field on vision. There they were. Roughly a handfull more kids to go, and then I was up... quickly, must think of something interesting to say!

This is what 5 - 6 hours of my life that I will never get back looks like.
Now, if you've never been to an instore appearance before, let me explain how it goes down: You wait in line for 5 - 6 hours, hand your shit to the disinterested band who absentmindedly scribble some graffiti on it, and then you leave. This was no different. I approach their folding table, probably shaking like a bitch, and hand the CD cover to David, the drummer without a wacky pseudonym. As I attempt to get words of appreciation past my teeth, he has already slid the cover over to Fieldy, the bass player. I shift over to my left and watch my memorabilia work its way down the nu-metal assembly line. I almost managed to say something to Munky during the second that he was scribbling some shit on my cover, but Head was my last chance. After writing the word "HEAD" on my cover, he slid it over to me and I decided to strike. "Thanks Head!" I probably whispered. He looked at me. I guess I didn't whisper it. He looked to his left, took the next piece of swag from Munky to sign and continued working the nu-metal assembly line.

I floated back into the mall to meet up with my parents, proudly holding my Follow the Leader cover. I talked to Head. And he sort of not really looked in my general direction. Typing this now, it looks and sounds ridiculous and pathetic, but when you're 15-years-old, and the depth of your musical appreciation spans the previous two Korn albums, you're easily impressed. But my rose-colored glasses soon fell off my face and shattered in the next few weeks, as I related my tale to the few friends I had who could appreciate my Korn experience. "So what did they say?" they would ask. "Um, nothing really. But Head sort of not really looked in my general direction!" They were not impressed. And the more I thought about it, neither was I. All I had to show for my 6 hours was a fucked up looking cover and a shitty story. Sure, they were probably sick of signing shit, and maybe they were all really close to Jonathan's dead grandmother, but c'mon guys, at least say hi to my nervous, 15-year-old fanboy ass.

So, now that Head has found Jesus, maybe it'll make him a little more talkative. After listening to his testimony on headtochrist.com, it appears that he has tons to talk about, including his addiction to meth, his fear of the church stealing all his money and a slew of other things that only people who truly believe in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ would understand. Can't think of a funny way to end this, but Jonathan Davis has a blog, and that's more funny than anything I could ever dream of writing.



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