Tuesday, July 28, 2009

"Have turned swimmers' bodies into sleek kayaks"

The debate continues.......

"While the scientific committee hired by FINA huddles over the definition of textile, milestones will continue to be ground into dust. The first two days of racing at these world championships have produced the first woman under four minutes in the 400-meter freestyle and the second, third, fourth and fifth men under 59 seconds in the 100 breaststroke.

The ban on polyurethane suits was ratified, as were the guidelines for how much skin the racing suits can cover. When the new rules go into effect, suits will stretch only between the waist and the knees for men and from the shoulders to the knees for women. And yet, there is no firm date for when the reforms will take effect.

Dr. Julio Maglione, the president of FINA, said a scientific committee would be convened to determine what constitutes a “textile” and the process could delay the ban until the spring of 2010 — time enough for dozens more records to fall.

“Well, then, they can probably expect Michael not to swim until then,” Phelps’s coach Bob Bowman said after the loss. “I’m done.”"

"Wait Till I Get My Money Right"

The funniest man of this summer, Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover), way back in the fall of 2007 helped Kanye West make the alternative video for his hit, "Can't Tell Me Nothing."

The idea for the video, according to Galifianakis, was to re-envision the song if it were written by two farmers in North Carolina.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Money Doesn't Buy Happiness

You don't have to watch this video all the way through. The title says it all and you can pick up on the vibe pretty quick.

One of my favorite teachers in high school gave us a book titled, The Last Shot, by Darcey Fray in our Modern Non-Fiction class. The Last Shot followed the real life story of a year in the life of three high school seniors and one freshman (Stephon) as they played basketball for Lincoln High School in Coney Island, NY. Each player struggled growing up in Coney Island with poverty, poor schools, prevalence of violence and drugs in the area and the pressure to be successful at basketball to make it to brighter futures.

As we finished the book in class, which ended with a where are they now section, my teacher started a discussion by asking of the four high schoolers who was the happiest. (I don't want to give away the end of the book, but it is well-known that Steph went on to play 15 seasons in the NBA making over a hundred million dollars in salaries and endorsements.)

The easy answer for a lot of the kids in my class was to say Stephon was the happiest. With the fame, fortune and a career playing a game that so many love to play he should be the happiest, right? But, as the above video may allude, earning all the money in the world may not buy happiness.

Steph has played for five different NBA franchises, none of which have ended on a good note. The relationships he had on every team soured over time, whether it was disagreements with coaches, players or fans, Stephon could never find happiness where he was playing. As one of the best sources for basketball wisdom, The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac, puts it, "[Stephon] is a phenomenal tumor." The almanac even analyzed Stephon's cancer effect on several of the teams he played for as each team (Minnesota Timberwolves, New Jersey Nets and Phoenix Suns) went on to have better seasons once Stephon left, despite being one of the most talented point guards of his time.

This summer Steph is an available free agent. Free to sign with any NBA team. But, no teams are buying. No team wants to risk adding his personality.

Poor guy. The point my teacher later emphasized was that to truly be happy people have to follow what they love. My teacher gave up his lucrative career in publishing to follow his passion for teaching. His last advice he shared with us was to never follow a path in life just for the money. Do what you really want to do.

If you ever get the chance to read The Last Shot you'll get an idea of the pressure Stephon got from his father to play basketball. Sort of reminiscent of the pressure Joe Jackson put on his kids. Stephon and Michael definitely seemed to love basketball and music, but the memories of their adolescents and the pressure put on by their fathers never seemed to go away.

This all just food for thought. Who am I to even judge Marbury's happiness? I have just never forgotten about this book or the lesson my teacher taught us.

If you want to know, the song is "Lean On Me" by Kirk Franklin.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Making of Where the Wild Things Are

Jay-Z (Rihanna & Kanye West) - "Run This Town"

Jay-Z (feat. Rihanna & Kanye West) - "Run This Town"

produced by Kanye West & No I.D.

Anticipation for Jay-Z's last chapter of the Blueprint trilogy is heating up. Jay, while over in the UK recently, told radio interviewers that Blueprint 3 would feature appearances by rock band MGMT, Mr Hudson, Drake, Rihanna, Kid Cudi and Kanye West. The album is gearing up to be released September 11, 2009, the 8th anniversary of the release of Blueprint 1.


Thursday, July 23, 2009

1 Year Anniversary

1 Full year of WDA blogging. 561 Posts in.

WDA - Created July 23, 2008.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Confiscated Video Materializes

A video clip of Lebron James getting dunked on at a Nike basketball camp in James' Akron, Ohio home has finally materialized after nearly all cameras with the dunked footage were confiscated more than a week ago. The mythical footage we were led to believe would never surface; however, someone who was there that day got out of there and onto YouTube.

October 2, 2009

Martin Scorsese's first feature narrative since The Departed.

Click here to watch the trailer.

Rap Feuds Mirror World Politics

"Mark Lynch, professor at George Washington University and the director of the Institute of Middle East Studies, tells Steve Inskeep he has always been a rap fan and is interested in parallels between rap, political science and international reactions."

NPR: Rapper Feud Mirrors World Politics

Foreign Policy: Jay-Z Schools Us In U.S. Hegemony

"So Jay-Z, like the United States after the war in Iraq, has got a tough decision to make," he says. "Do you ignore these provocations? But then they might spread — then people might think that you're weak. Do you hit down really hard? You could maybe destroy The Game, but you're going to be exhausted in the process."

It's like the United States having to fight counterinsurgency campaigns worldwide. The more powerful you are, Lynch says, the more limits there are on your ability to use that power.

"Heck, when [Jay-Z] tried to retire after the Black Album, he found himself dragged back into the game (shades of America's inward turn during the Clinton years?)."

Manhattan Airport

The Manhattan Airport Foundation is advocating hard to replace New York City's Central Park with a more centrally-located international airport that would benefit, "all New Yorkers."

Double Standards

New York Times: Michael Vick's Biggest Mistake.

The Hurt Locker

"A small classic of tension, bravery, and fear, which will be studied twenty years from now when people want to understand something of what happened to American soldiers in Iraq."

The Hurt Locker is directed by Kathryn Bigelow (of Point Break fame) and starring Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie, Brian Geraghty, Guy Peacere, Evangeline Lilly and Ralph Fieenes.

MGMT - "Congratulations" Live

Starting in June, MGMT began performing a couple new songs from their upcoming release, Congratulations, scheduled to come out early next year.

Here are the other new songs being performed:

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Tempest

Tony Award winning director Julie Taymor has adapted one of William Shakespeare's last plays of the same name, The Tempest.

Starring Helen Mirren, Chris Cooper, Djimon Hounsou, comedian Russell Brand and Alan Cumming this adaptation, which was filmed entirely in Hawaii, is scheduled to be released sometime this year.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Video is NSFW=Not Safe for Work

L to R: M.I.A., Kanye West, Aziz Ansari, Zoe Kravitz

What is Real?

"Using childhood photo’s of Michael and knowledge on basic aging trends, forensic artists constructed a portrait of how Michael would have looked at age 50, had he never undergone plastic surgery. The difference between the portraits is striking. But which is the real Michael? The man of flesh and blood, sculpted by plastic surgeons or the highly speculative forensic image? Both Michaels are virtual in their own right."
Next Nature

Would Love to See Cops Chase Usain Bolt

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Even More Banksy

I wish I were in England this summer. Banksy is the featured exhibition at the Bristol Museum from now until August 31st.

Banksy in Africa

New Drake

Do It Now

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Debut of Patrick Ewing

Check out this 1985 NBA on CBS.

Vintage Patrick Ewing, Don Imus and David Stern.

A Complete Throwback.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Hoover Dam Bypass


1,900 feet across the Colorado River. 1,600 feet away from the Hoover Dam. $240 million in construction. Scheduled to be completed September of 2010.

From the writer of "Juno"

Jennifer's Body. The second film written by Academy Award winning Diablo Cody is starring Megan Fox and is scheduled to come out September 18, 2009.

If the trailer doesn't work for you above, click here to watch it over at /Film.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

America the Beautiful

Marvin Gaye performing the Star Spangled Banner accompanied by drum machine at the 1983 NBA All-Star Game.

Ong Bak 2

The greatest martial artist of the 21st Century, Tony Jaa, is back.

In his directorial debut Tony Jaa stars as Tien. I would describe the plot, but more importantly I would like to narrate the action in the trailer.

Watch Jaa fight a real life alligator, hop skip over a moving herd of elephants and back flip off an elephant's tusk to drop kick some evil pawn.

Ong Bak 2 has been out in Thailand since December of 2008; however, won't be released to the United States until October 23, 2009.

Friday, July 3, 2009


Filming is underway for Christopher Nolan's next big motion picture Inception. The film, which is an original screenplay by Nolan, is being described as a, "contemporary sci-fi actioner set within the architecture of the mind."

Inception will star Leonardo Dicaprio, Marion Cottilard (Public Enemies), Ellen Page (Juno), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (3rd Rock from the Sun) and Ken Watanabe (in the picture above).

Currently in Tokyo, the film will follow a 6-month long $200 million shoot in Los Angeles, London, Paris, Calgary and Tangiers, Morocco.

Scheduled to be released July 16, 2010.

*Nolan has also written and directed Memento, Batman Begins, The Prestige and The Dark Knight.