Monthly Archives: August 2006

Video Picks – Cheerleaders and Homecoming Queens

Tonight’s picks are inspired by the episode of VH1 Classic’s All Request Hour. Someone actually requested this next one:

Julie Brown: The Homecoming Queen Has Got A Gun (1987)

The song and video almost remind me of a Ray Stevens song, except not as funny. :)

So, why not go from the prom queen to cheerleaders?

Toni Basil: Mickey (1981)

Ah, the one-hit-wonder choreographer. :) I like that she used real cheerleaders in the video (probably for the same reason I love seeing real band members in videos). Hey, wouldn’t it be cool to for someone do a mini “Where Are They Now” on the cheerleaders in this video? :)

Jobs & Weblogs

I’ve been sitting on this one for a while. The story behind it is a bit old now, but I’m just now feeling motivated enough to actually write it up.

Here’s the fundamental question behind this post: why are people surprised when they are fired for bad-mouthing their employer and co-workers on their web sites?

“Dooced” is a pretty common term in the blogosphere these days. For anyone who doesn’t know its meaning and/or etymology, the Wikipedia entry gives a pretty good high-level summary. Last month, the media latched onto another case of a woman getting fired for roughly the same reason.

So, here’s how I view this. My employer as an entity has absolutely no good reason to concern itself with my life outside of work, and that includes this web log. However, part of the reason for that is that this web log has absolutely no reason to concern itself with the details of my experiences as an employee. I don’t think there’s ever been a time when I’ve considered that it might be okay to share specifics of my work in this weblog, regardless of whether or not I name my employer or the people in those accounts.

To me, what it boils down to is this: whatever my “typical” readership is, this web log amounts to public media. Google indexes this site quite thoroughly. Anyone who publishes a web site and doesn’t know about the Wayback Machine at archive.org REALLY needs to go there and search for their own URL. Look up URLs for sites that are years-dead. Go try it. Look up “http://www.eng.ua.edu/~jmcclure/”. Scary.

My point… I don’t care how crafty I think I am, the web is a public medium, and there’s enough information out there to connect the dots between me, my job, and any comments I make about my job on my site. Given that, how can I expect my employer not to protect itself in that situation, and unless there was clear discrimination (based on the legal definition, which doesn’t include the right to bad-mouth my employer) how can I expect to have any recourse or right to complain?

Video Picks: virtual bands and the Johns’ teeth

I’m being a bit lazy tonight with these picks. Neither is exactly unknown, but they both just kinda strike my fancy.

Gorillaz: Feel Good Inc. (2005)

The concept of a “virtual hip hop group” fascinates me way more than it should. The people behind this music (who include two former members of the Talking Heads, BTW) have gone to great lengths to create an entire world around the virtual band members.

All of the videos I’ve seen so far have pretty much fallen into the can’t-look-away category, but I like this one best. I think it’s a combination of the music itself and Murdoc (the bass player) in the video. The animation of him playing the bass fascinates me. As usual, the jerkiness of the compressed video gets in the way. Oh well.

They Might Be Giants: Ana Ng (1989)

I’m cheating a bit on this one, because it’s in the “100 greatest” post that Stephen referenced when he started all this. I can’t help it that other people have good taste, though. :) The comment there that I love is that this video “stars the Johns’ teeth”. It’s so true. That and the dance. I’ve seen variations on the dance show up in a few of their videos.

I’ve never looked it up, but I’m fairly sure the set is on a firefighters’ training ground (plain brick buildings with big single-digit numbers tend to give it away). This is yet another one where the video works better if it’s properly keeping up with the music. So many of the visuals (including the teeth and the dance) line up with the song’s beat.

Shared Musical DNA?

I can’t believe I never figured this out before.

The recent post about “Electric Youth” got me thinking and listening, and on the way home from work yesterday, it hit me: Foolish Beat” by Debbie Gibson IS the bubblegum rewrite of Wham’s “Careless Whisper.

It’s all there. The raspy blues-ish alto sax, the sappy “I lost you and I’ll never get over it” message, the minor key. Not only are the song titles similar, each is uttered only once as part of the second verse of its respective song.

I wonder if Debbie was a George Michael fan much? :)