Entertainment/culture

Respectful Insolence

Category archives for Entertainment/culture

As far as silly Internet memes go, given my interest in World War II history, I have a weakness for Downfall parodies, which have grown up on YouTube like kudzu over the last couple of years. I also thought it was only a matter of time before someone did something like this and wondered why…

Perhaps you’ve seen them. (Actually, how could you avoid them?) I’m talking about those annoying Omnaris commercials with the crappy computer animation in which a bunch of military-looking men in helmets ram an Omnaris sprayer into the woman’s nose to fix her nasal allergies: Something’s always bugged me about that commercial, more than the amateurish…

Apparently someone at a British hospital thought that this was a good idea. I beg to differ. Words fail me. It’s rare, I know, but occasionally it does happen.

Has Dr. Oz finally crossed the Woobicon?

I’ve had it with Dr. Oz. Although I haven’t seen his show today (for one thing, I work for a living; for another thing, even if I had today off I wouldn’t waste it watching Dr. Oz’s show), readers have informed me that yesterday, on March 1, 2010, Dr. Oz threw away whatever shred of…

Science is the poetry of reality…

…and I can’t argue with Symphony of Science:

I realize that Chris Mooney is a polarizing figure here on the ol’ ScienceBlogs, but I have to give him props for doing a damned fine job handling questions about vaccines, autism, and Andrew Wakefield’s utterly discredited 1998 Lancet study, which was retracted by the Lancet‘s editors last week: Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world…

Blocked by Fire Marshal Bill!

I feel really, really good today. The reason? Simple Orac has annoyed Jim Carrey enough to ban him on Twitter. The exchange went something like this. For the first time in a while, I was perusing Twitter (I have a really hard time keeping my Insolence to 140 characters; so I only check my Twitter…

I realize I complain periodically about when I get into what seems to me to be a rut in which I’m writing pretty much only about anti-vaccine lunacy. This is just such a week, when the news on the vaccine front has been coming fast and furious, first with Andrew Wakefield’s being found to have…

They’re coming out of the woodwork

Thanks to having been up all night Thursday night and most of the night a couple of days before that working on a grant, I know I haven’t had a chance to write about the GMC’s ruling on Andrew Wakefield’s unethical conduct in conducting his “clinical research” that according to him linked the MMR vaccine…

Hitler doesn’t like the iPad

You knew it was coming. You knew from many previous incidents that it was inevitable: Who knew Hitler was such a Mac geek? Personally, although I think the iPad looks like a really cool device, I’m really not sure where it would fit into my life. I already have an iPhone, which I love, and…

Last night was grant crunch time to get a truly serviceable draft to my collaborators today as promised, leaving enough time to revise it by the February 5 deadline. That means the blog has to take a hit today, which is a shame, because Joe Mercola and Age of Autism have laid down some idiocy…

The scale of it all

If you ever want to get a sense of the scale of the universe and how insignificant our little planet is compared to the scope of it all, here’s something really cool to put things in perspective, courtesy of the American Museum of Natural History’s Astronomy Picture of the Day: It’d be really cool if…

While I’m working today, enjoy some bizarre cartoon awesomeness from Max Fleischer, courtesy of Boing-Boing: Truly amazing. And 80 years old, too, with a wicked jazz soundtrack. The Fleischer brothers rule.

For some reason, I’ve tended to give Dr. Mehmet Oz a bit of a free pass when it comes to promoting woo. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because I just haven’t paid that much attention to him. Perhaps it’s because, even when he was on Oprah’s show, he didn’t delve as deeply into the…

Tim Minchin’s “Storm” to be animated

As regular readers know, I really like Tim Minchin’s take on skepticism in general and on alternative medicine in particular. His piece de resistance thus far in his career is a “nine minute beat poem” entitled Storm, in which at a dinner party our performer is forced to deal with a female version of Mike…

Happy Holidays

I think that David Bowie and Bing Crosby say it best: Yeah, I know I’ve become a heathen, but I still love this song and this particular performance.

When Santa met Jack Bauer

It’s Christmas, and I hope that those of you who celebrate the day are having a merry one. Personally, I’m taking the day off from any substantive blogging, instead electing to post quickie holiday-themed stuff that amuses me. Still, it might not be so merry if everyone’s favorite elf happened to have met the wrong…

If there’s one thing that’s irritated the crap out of me ever since I entered the medical field, it’s celebrities with more fame than brains or sense touting various health remedies. Of late, three such celebrities have spread more misinformation and quackery than the rest of the second tier combined. Truly, together, they are the…

Just can’t wait for “The End of Time”

Regular readers here know that I’m a long time Doctor Who fan. That’s why it’s with some sadness that I await the approach of the two-episode finale for David Tennant’s tenure as the Tenth Doctor. Over his three full seasons and multiple specials in 2009, Tennant redefined the role and even began to rival Tom…

Five years

Has it really been that long? It was a dismally overcast Saturday five years ago when, on a whim after having read a TIME Magazine article about how 2004 was supposedly the Year of the Blogger, I sat down in front of my computer, found Blogspot, and the first incarnation of Respectful Insolence was born.…

Happy Thanksgiving

It’s Thanksgiving here in the States; so I plan on taking the day off from blogging that I might partake of the American custom of stuffing myself to the point of unconsciousness while hanging out with my family. In the meantime, bow before the genius of the Muppets, as they perform one of my favorite…

Remember how I nominated a truly execrable local news report about Desiree Jennings as a serious contender for the worst reporting of the year, perhaps even of the decade? It had everything, and I seriously doubted that anything would challenge it for credulous supremacy any time soon. How wrong I was. Check out this video:…

Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in again. Yes, I know I’ve used this clip before at least twice and the line in it several more times over the last couple of years. However, sometimes it’s just so completely appropriate to how I’m feeling about a topic I’m about to…

This project is behind schedule. The reasons, I hope, are forgivable. First off, there was just too much other stuff going on last week, to the point where, even though I’ve read several chapters of Suzanne Somers’ new book (if you can call it that) Knockout: Interviews with Doctors Who Are Curing Cancer–And How to…

…back when they believed that humors were responsible for your health. Oh, yes, I know it’s now “politically or medically incorrect” now to practice medicine the way they did in the days of our Founding Fathers, but that’s because the socialist libero-Nazis took that away from us. After all, remember who else didn’t answer medical…