Sunday, December 28, 2008

The weekend links

So is everyone having a nice holidays? I've been feeling so stuffed for the last few days and staying up way later than I normally get to. It's all very exciting!

The cable show marathons have also been a real joy. I'm currently watching the entire season of Celebrity Rehab 2 on MuchMoreMusic and on Christmas and Boxing Day I was treated to the entire Star Trek movies shown in a continuous loop on the Space channel.

Also, is it just me or has everyone completely vanished from the interweb? No one's on Facebook lately and even the tabloid blogs are really quiet. I shouldn't complain though because since Monday I've been taking a (needed) break from blogging here.

So with January's imminent arrival I have to start thinking about getting my house in order:

  • B!G positions and organization for our three accounts
  • B!G training and development for executive positions to have a seamless transition when we all graduate
  • My own shit, the least of which is a job when I graduate and finishing up this massive 601 project.
Unfortunately, the BBAs are likely still going to be affected by the CUPE strike. If school resumes in the next semester, this will likely mean that the students will have 2X the work compounded into one term. Take a deep breath!

Ok, on with the links. I posted lots of them to help you deal with your holiday ennui:

You owe it to your musical knowledge and appreciation to listen to Janis Joplin singing 'Ball & Chain' live at the 1967 Monterrey Pop Festival. Classic song and she's one of those incredibly rare talents that burned out far before her time. She was 27 when she died of a drug overdose.

When Amy Winehouse burst on the scene in the UK in 2004, the comparisons between her and Janis Joplin really began because of her reckless behavior and drug-enhanced singing ability. I really like Amy Winehouse because she personifies the same pained sadness that made Janis Joplin such an amazing performer.

For something a little more modern, here's my new favourite indie rock song - 'Ulysses', by Franz Ferdinand.

Creatives, take note: "The fashion and communications industries may rely on a constant feed of zeitgeisty whims, but product designers and strategists need to develop a deeper understanding of change." Read the whole article about how to develop your design strategy and foresight.

Pajiba is wonderful. Top-notch writers with a real sensitivity to pop culture pulsepoints. Read their list of 2008's most bangable celebrities. Seriously, it's not as lowbrow as it sounds!

I'll refrain from offering any real comment, other than I think that these pictures are uniquely real and bring our their subjects' humanity - look at the eyes. See these at the American vagabond photo collection.

The Duggars are an Arkansas family that now has 18 children (with the birth of Jordyn-Grace Makiya on December 18, 2008). I'm not sure where one draws the line, but it's pretty selfish to have 18 children, especially considering that each North American has the average ecological impact the equivalent of 19 Africans. Furthermore, there are more important issues than some woman oozing out babies every year. The Huffington Post agrees.

The Cryotranz Pet Chamber seems like a really smart idea. I'd love to stuff Champ, Tiggy, Lola, or Juice in there for those long trips. Zero hassle!

Beautiful photography with intriguing uses of lighting, makeup, angles, and clothes. the model is actually 20 years old. See her photographed at 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, and 60 years old. Just remember that in most forms of advertising - what you see is a lie!

Drunk history is one of 2008's more viral videos. It's actually really well directed with deadpan cuts and funny voiceovers. I like this a lot. Michael Cera guest stars.

In September, Diesel (jeans) launched a viral video promoting their new collection. Now, I'm a huge fan of SFW porn so this isn't exactly original, but it's certainly edgy and pushing the bounds of what's appropriate. I know I'm pushing those bounds right now! Watch the video, I guarantee you'll get a laugh out of it.

BBAs, I'm not sure this link will be as relevant to you, but the older, graduated readers of this blog should enjoy the 25 signs that you have grown up. I think I'm about 24 of these. Sally, Lisa, Vladana, this one is for you!

House gymnastics are the absolute best. I remember when I attempted a handstand and smashed a hole through the drywall with my foot! HAHAHAHAH! Learn a few awesome moves here.

At the bar I really hate 'the guy who knows the bartender' and definitely 'the cropduster'! Who is among your least favourite people at the bar?

Required viewing for all B!G Associates: Ken Robinson is an entertaining speaker and it's not hard to agree with his point of view on why schools kill creativity. Feeling like you have a creative compulsion? You've definitely got to watch this video.

I swear, Stormtroopers are just like us.

Now, it's not exactly the witching season, but I'm a big fan of horror and the grotesque. See for deeply frightening pictures and ideas for Halloween 2009. This guy is really creative and has an awesome aesthetic for the macabre. If you're freaked out by this stuff, I strongly suggest that you get over it - there are a lot scarier things to fear in this world than what we imagine. See the beauty in the perverse and bizarre. Nick, this link is for you.

And finally, has it seemed that this year has been a real roller coaster? JibJab has summed it up nicely in the 2008 Year in Review video:

Monday, December 22, 2008

PR can be a shady biz

So I'm a marketer, not a publicist. I can't relate to the popularity culture that PR agencies base their credibility on and don't truly understand the black arts by which they can create or eliminate buzz.

But anyway, TechCrunch, a Seattle-based entrepreneurial blog recently wrote about some PR maven who made their shit list. It's really illuminating to a world we rarely see but have some pretty strong perceptions about nonetheless.

Lois Whitman is apparently the poster child for everything that's wrong with PR, sez TechCrunch, and uses spam tactics like a crying child to convince people to give in to her demands until she gets what she wants.

Now, I'm fenced up on this one. On the one hand, I am a fervent advocate for relevance-based marketing that makes marketers work creatively to gain people's attention, but on the other hand reading her vicious words really made me smile:

"CES publishes a list of press. You are one of a few thousand. Everyone has access to that list for all kinds of reasons. It is publicly published. As a PR agency we use that list so we can solicit press for booth appts. I hope you can appreciate that. If you don’t, let me introduce you to the “delete” button. Or in the future do not sign up as a press person for CES. Furthermore, do not make any threats to my company. I don’t need you to tell me what is right or what is wrong. I have been in the CE business for 42 years. I have seen nasty people like you melt away faster than a snowball going up hill in the rain. I am waiting for an apology. Maybe we can meet at CES for a hug or a slug. P.S. I just visited your web site. I would hardly call your blog a publication, However, you do have very interesting content and we have lots of client you would like to know more about to help you in your endeavors. Call me."

Decide for yourself.

If she's such a PR maven, it'll be interesting how she manages to quell this blogosphere revulsion against her.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The weekend links

Olga, these links are dedicated to you. I know that it's difficult to leave (and leave a lot behind), but you're going to have a terrific time away on exchange. I can't wait until you're back and hear about the big plans you have for B!G for next year.

Also to the team, you've put in a really concerted effort this semseter on all our client projects. This effort has not gone unrecognized and we really can see some star performers among you. I love to be surrounded by individuals with the same passion for excellence as me and who are committed to delivering quality work to our clients. I really am looking forward to next semester when we can grow our skills and really strut our stuff.

Anyway, on with the links:

Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure really is a gnarly movie with tubular values. Additionally, it's got George Carlin as Rufus in a really unnecessary cameo role. It's pretty fun but it kinda goes off the rails for me after the scene where Bill and Ted transport themselves to the future where the magical time travelling phonebooth first came from. They convene with the council of elders in this pivotal scene of cinematic history. It's also best not to think about the fact that the space-time continuum is horribly corrupted or that in the future, Bill and Ted's music will "align the planets, bring peace to all nations, and form the foundation of a new civilization. Truly bizarre, but most excellent...

Inappropriate Christmas toys. It's not too late to get me those Pee and Poo stuffed animals I wanted to help me learn proper bathroom etiquette.

Gorgeous digital mech art for cyberpunks.

2008's most underrated websites. But why do websites have to be rated anyway? Why can't websites just be meaningful to those who visit them?

I really want this technology in my hands right now. It's amazing to dream and this kind of functionality doesn't seem too far off, does it? See what handheld computing will mean in a decade.

In yesterday's post I wrote about the emergence of social media marketing and how best practices still really haven't been well established in this channel. There are some big hurdles to social marketing in a web 2.0 world, explains the WSJ.

Nice. Check out hypnocake. How good does this look? All hail the great hypnocake!!! (Jeff, I know you'll get this reference...). Another recipe is here.

I'm really into indie music right now, here are a few good songs I wanted to share:

Rain, by Bishop Allen.

Evident Utensil, by Chairlift, as performed by two girls - this is actually a pretty good fan video!

Xs and Os, by The Loves

Bullets, by Tunng

Your Heart is Rising, by Electric Six - I'm seriously into this song. Great bassline and sexy lyrics.

And finally, this fantastic video about technological development and globalization is required viewing for all B!G Associates. It really puts things in perspective. The biggest standout for me was the claim that by 2049, a $1000 computer will have more computing capacity than the entire human population combined. Yikes. I get the sense that this is the kind of education Schulich means to give us but can't quite grasp.

Did You Know? from Amybeth on Vimeo.

Have a great holidays, everyone.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Marketing best practices

Killing two birds with one stone is great isn't it?

I'm writing an appendix about advertising channel marketing strategy right now for a report as part of my 601 project and I thought about posting the analysis up to the blog!

I love original content!!!

It's really abbreviated, but it's a quick comparison of old and new best practices of various online and offline advertising channels. I've tried to be comprehensive and unbiased here (although I personally think that untargeted advertising can go to Hell....) but it's a good synopsis of the different benefits and recommendations for effectiveness for each channel.

You'll see that throughout this chart I'm really in support of integrated campaigns. That means marketing communications that simultaneously leverage the other active channels. It's the newspaper ad that tells you to go online and try virtually test drive the new model car, it's the radio spot that tells you to look for Count Chocula sampling this Saturday at Metro stores in the GTA.

God, how I wish there was a product sampling of Count Chocula....but I digress.

Oh, and BBAs, plagiarize away! Just don't expect to develop unoriginal, uncited analysis and hand it to me to give to one of our clients.

Advertising channel

Channel description

Old best practices

New best practices

Website development

Includes website design, management, analysis, promotional microsite development.

Important channel for speaking directly to tech-savvy, younger consumers.

Clear site navigation and shallow site structure with few deep levels.

Integrate web metrics tracking for site optimization and online marketing.

Promotion in offline marketing communications as a source of extra information about a brand.

Site users have the opportunity to create content and interact bilaterally with the site.

Important to integrate websites with offline communications including print and television (often these drive consumers to the website).

Provide relevant brand and product information in multiple formats, allowing consumers an opportunity to take content with them or send to their friends off the site.

Promoted in offline communications as a destination in itself and a place to go as part of Web 2.0 consumer interactivity.


Includes email design, deployment, analysis, and potential integration with database segmentation.

Important channel for direct marketing and establishing brand relevance.

Use an attention grabbing subject line.

Display the best content “above the fold” of the screen.

Do not be too copy-heavy, leverage text and pictures.

Communicate exclusive offers, promotions, and deals to “our best customers”.

Perform active segmentation and response analysis on house list to determine most optimal messages/content to be included in targeted email to consumers.

Must be easy for consumers to unsubscribe or change their email settings. Position as nonintrusive consumer touchpoint that is relevant to you.

Email is highly useful to create a curriculum or education campaign for new consumers or a multi-wave campaign.

Social media

Includes brand promotion through social media public relations, viral content development and distribution, network ‘seeding’, and identity development on social network profile sites.

Important channel for brand identity building through online affiliations and new project promotion.

Note, because this is such a new channel, best practices are being developed as part of an ongoing mutation of the medium.

Social media is too young to have any “old” best practices, because marketers are still trying to understand how to use it effectively.

Pay attention to emerging consumer memes and viral trends online. Ride these.

Create a clear identity that allows users to comment, rate, or interact with the brand’s social media presence.

Use social media PR sparingly and only to announce exciting brand developments or significant launches.

“Feedback 3.0” is the act of brands actively responding to and commenting back to their commentators in online forums. (

In-store retail promotion

Includes design of product packaging and printed promotional materials, development of coupons and offers.

Also includes total management of promotional projects and events, including multiple-party promotions.

Eye-popping visuals and unique creative execution.

Display in preferred locations in retail environments (end of aisle, eye level, front of store and produce area).

Promotions are used to highlight exciting new product launches or as a boost to seasonally low sales.

Retail promotions are immediately relevant to the consumer (because they are physically interacting with the product and have opted-in). Therefore how are promotions used by brands to develop long-term positive relationships with their consumers?

Promotions must be thought of like big impressions for brand building and used for activating new brand strategy.

Strong integration of promotions with other non-tangible brand communications.


Includes the planning, execution, and management of in-person demonstrations, sampling, physical product interactions, sensory advertising, and other impression-based advertising experiences.

Create innovative and original experiences – make the consumer say “wow, I’ve never seen this before”.

High traffic locations are effective to reach as many people as possible.

Eye-catching or permits prolonged or repeat impressions.

Demonstrate measurability and big impact on sales by using experiential techniques. Cannot simply generate a ‘big splash’.

Use experiential advertising projects as opportunities to also establish customer listening posts and gain valuable primary research about brand perceptions and usage.

Direct mail

Includes the design, writing, segmentation, deployment, analysis, and management of print advertising, flyers, brochures, offers, product samples, and house-list magazines that are targeted to specific consumers (not mass mail).

‘Test and learn’ – perform frequent empirically controlled tests to different consumer segments to understand what is the optimal form of creative and offer to generate higher response.

Personalize direct mail and provide a compelling reason to open it (similar to an email subject line)

Integrated use of direct mail with CRM database for clients. Understand customer behavior across response channels (direct mail, web, email, SMS).

Like in-store retail promotion, direct mail establishes an intimate connection between the brand and consumer because it is highly interactive and tangible.

Clear announcement of purpose and call to action so that customer understands role of direct mail in context of all other interactions they have with the brand.


Includes the design, deployment, and management of all messaging that appears on outdoor ‘surfaces’ in high-traffic or visible areas.

Note, limited effectiveness of this channel at driving response and engagement from consumers. Highly passive engagement by prospects in this channel.

Like experiential and in-store retail promotion, out-of-home should be immediately understandable and capture interest.

Copy must be concise and non-informational. Strictly call-to-action.

A classic medium, the best practices have no changed significantly because of limited innovation potential of the platform.

Obvious integration of out-of-home advertising with existing in-market campaigns in other channels.


Includes copywriting, segmentation, deployment, management, and analysis of text or multimedia messages distributes to mobile phone subscribers over a network.

Important channel for brand building and relationship development.

Note, because this is such a new channel, best practices are being developed as part of an ongoing mutation of the medium.

Mobile technology is also rapidly evolving and permits unique applications like proximity sensitive out-of-home marketing (billboards that activate when a consumer walks by) and geo-targeted messages direct to the consumer.

Must be an opt-in house list and must permit easy unsubscribe for recipients.

SMS marketing is highly invasive (it’s marketing that vibrates in your pocket). Therefore the message should be targeted, relevant, and actionable by the consumer.

Therefore, SMS is not optimal for informational campaigns. Instead, use for direct response or experiential purposes (e.g. respond now).


Includes the design, production, media buying, and management of television commercials or infomercials.

Important channel for broad awareness of brand strategy to consumers. This sets the tone of an integrated campaign with multiple channel strategies.

A great ‘hook’ to immediately capture attention.

Clear link between story and brand, story and message, and brand and message.

Clear call to action for viewers, or an understanding of what they are being made to believe.

Best practices somewhat unchanged for mass media.

Perhaps greater concern for how television commercials are able to change behavior among consumers. Is this really an advanced form of marketing that succeeds at building a relationship with consumers?

Call-to-action that is integrated with other marketing communications in market. Useful capstone to large campaigns which rely on a broad mix of mediums (out-of-home, online, promotional, print, and radio).


Includes the design, production, media buying, and management of radio commercials.

Memorable messages that listeners can associate to a brand with unaided prompting.

Local message optimization because of the ability to purchase large blocks of commercial time from radio station conglomerates that own stations in different markets.

Same as above.

Positive associate to highlight existing in-market or upcoming promotional campaigns for integrated marketing campaigns.

Mass print media

Includes the design, production, media buying, and management of printed advertisements in newspapers, magazines, flyers, and other non-targeted print media.

Classic principles apply here for copywriting and call-to-action development.

Same as above.

Considering existing volume of print media advertising that continues to be done, important to integrate this activity with marketing mix of online and offline channels.

Can be used as a traffic-driving source of consumers to online channel where more information can be found about brand.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Best skits on Mad TV

I've got a pretty puerile sense of humour so it's no surprise that I'm a huge fan of Mad TV. After three hours last night watching clips on YouTube, I decided to make a list of my favourite Mad TV sketches from all seasons of the show. Honestly you shouldn't watch these if you're easily offended by sexual, scatological, or racial humour.

Alright, here are the best skits on Mad TV in descending order:

#25: Bush vs. Kerry 2004 Presidential Debate
All scripted improv but goes to show what quick-witted actors Michael McDonald and Frank Caliendo are. I love John Kerry's lines, such deadpan delivery! "Didn't I see you in Vietnam???"

#24: Estrella Viaje! - Mexican Star Trek
Pat Kilbane as Senor Spock is the best! "Donde es el Starbase Ocho?"

#23: Al-Jazeera "Death to America" News
Really really really offensive, but a perfect takeoff of a typical Amereican news program. I love at 3:00 when the anchor cuts a burkha-ed Nicole Parker off with a sharp "ha-lalala!"

Oprah's fat cam
The first of many Oprah clips that made it to my favourites list. This sketch really elevates the whole body-suit concept to a whole, 'notha, level. Great at 0:45 when Stephnie Weir explains that the thinning camera takes off a whole 200 lbs from Oprah. "Great!, That means I can keep EATING!!!!"

#21: Oprah giving away money
Two in a row here, Oprah is seriously one of my favourite characters spoofed on the show. Debra Wilson does a perfect impression and it's so hard to put one of her sketches before another. Hilarious at 0:45 when she screams "sit DOWN!!" and 5:20 when she hides a gold Rolex watch somewhere in her body....gee, i wonder where!

#20: Tickle me emo
Great premise and done to perfection. Super editing too.

#19: Britney and K-Fed Thanksgiving
Mmmm gumball cornbread is "yummmaaayyy". One of Ike Barinholtz' best skits.

#18: Substitute teacher
I'm not sure which line I like better: "Don't be a slut, wash your butt" or "Kissing leads to humping like farting leads to pooping"

#17: The Apple iRack
I want the iMicrowave and iVacuum. The smoke and shaking from the iRack is so funny, but the joke is a little tired.

#16: Action Jackson
Lol, this skit is so wrong...Phil LaMarr has got the Michael Jackson mannerisms and dance moves down cold. "Children of the world, clap your hands for me!"

Three Minute Meal: Tuna Melts
Another sketch where I really can't keep it together. It's like an updated version of the old Will Sasso Paul Timberman sketches.

#14: Oprah's Jackass
Not only does this clip has juvenile pratfall humour, but it's topped off with a an amazing Debra Wilson as a really over-the-top Oprah.

#13: QVC: Fat fashion
I pretty much lose it when Nicole Parker comes walking out as a giant circus tent at 3:20.

#12: Survivor: Cook Islands Race Wars
Don't watch if you're easily offended by racial stereotypes, but it's pretty bad! Bobby Lee is the best.

#11: Lorraine goes to the dentist
I'm not sure whether a lot of people like Mo Collins as Lorraine, but it's great when they just start improvising and she starts losing it at 4:10.

#10: Shakira Parody
Mo Collins is brilliant and this sketch is perfect if you've actually seen the Whenever, wherever video. I love the line "lucky that I have a smokin' body cause I only sing in gibberish"

#9: Sluts and the City
Michael McDonald as a massive, mannish Carrie Bradshaw - hahahaa! And don't forget that they're four smart, single women taking charge of their own lives.This is such a rude sketch.

#8: 1977 Sex Ed
As much as I dislike Avril Lavigne, she's actually really funny in this! Best is her groovy swinger parents Carla and Maurice and at 2:00 when she's explaining how the reproductive system works: "the penis explodes!"

#7: The Sopranos on PAX
"Fu--!!", "sh--!!", "motherfu----!!"

#6: True Hollywood Story: You are the love of my life
I always loved these two, particularly Alex Borstein. Will Sasso's extreme falsetto is great!

Boca Grove Condo Report, Oscar Edition
Muriel's seizure episodes are hilarious, but it's Michael McDonald's Isador that puts it over the top for me. At 3:50, "speaking of dramatic, it's time for me to go and do something very dramatic!" - I love it.

#4. OJ Simpson Bloopers
This is a really early one, but it's got great staying power. Great editing and acting by Orlando Jones.

#3: Stuart Bloopers
It was so hard to actually name the best Stuart clip, so here's what I think is the best. I love watching Mo Collins crack up when Michael McDonald is keeping a totally straight face. "StuUUAAaart!!!"

#2: Spishak Easy Bake Oven
One of those clips where I'm laughing the whole way through. Spishak commercials were always funny, this is the best one. SOoo many great gags. It's great because "no more lightbulbs!" and "food cooked with natural gas doesn't hav that weird electric taste!"

BEST: The Vagina Monologues

This skit really does bring things together for me. You've got the four doyennes of the show: Mo Collins, Debra Wilson, Alex Borstein, and Nicole Sullivan; Oprah, and a hilarious premise. It can't get any better than's the number one Mad TV sketch:

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Loyalty? We don't need no stinkin' loyalty!

I've been doing a lot of on-site research with a particular marketing agency right now and have learned more about the industry than ever before. From all this work, there's one odd quirk which I'm starting to get a better handle on: turnover and employee retention.

Agency culture is very fluid. Employees typically last only 1 1/2 - 2 years in one place before moving on to the next big opportunity. It's like I'm Spiderman and I swing from building to building, each time getting enough momentum to grasp on to a higher floor on the structure.

My old agency was Wunderman and I look back on it fondly. Culturally it was a hoot with lots of Gen Y like me who had a lot to prove and wanted their chance to cut their teeth on big projects. Operationally, the work permitted lots of risk-taking, ownership, and collaboration with diverse teams.

But by the end of my 15 months that I worked with the company, I had more tenure than probably 40% of the employees there. This is not a function of growth. It's a function of immense mobility of employees among agencies, and among agencies like Wunderman and related data-based organizations (the big banks, Air Miles, research houses).

Initially I stacked this churn up to the fact that "it's a marketing agency and this is just what it's like", but as I learn more about the industry I'm realizing that it doesn't have to be this way.

One consequence of churn is that among middle and senior levels in big shops there's a palpable dearth of good talent. The kind of good talent that can't be codified or seen in the effectiveness of MarCom projects. It doesn't matter how skilled you may be as an analytics project manager, senior art director, or digital account director, you still lack valuable abilities as a manager and an employee.

A lot of my coworkers see high turnover and mobility as a cool way to quickly advance and get your name recognition up. You'll leapfrog between roles based on your networking prowess and ability to distinguish yourself as a non-supporter of the team. Your resume will read like a rolodex of advertising agencies because you spent only a few short years at each place.

And what have you gained?
Credentials, a client list, knowledge of different industries, accounts, and agency functions (e.g. digital, retail, CRM, print).

And what have you lost?

Interpersonal and leadership skills because no one worked with you long enough for you to truly help the develop themselves.

So I'm not suggesting that people should remain at shops they hate or in roles which give them no new challenges, opportunities, or satisfaction. I really support the inidividual in deciding what's right for them.

But just temper your optimism for looking elsewhere with a rational assessment of what you'll stand to gain (of lose) by leaving. Never leave for the sake of leaving. Turnover is high in the agency world and has resulted in selfish managers and a general feeling among all levels of gamesmanship. In that environment, culture really can't thrive. Warmth and inclusivity are really only superficial labels attached to the mission statement to form some perceptual distinction in the minds of presumptive new hires.

I'm sorry if any of my Wunderman friends felt evicerated by this rant!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The weekend links

It's exam time and we're wrapping up a bunch of projects now. I call these weeks Hell weeks because of the many loose ends that need to get tied up. Also I finally am celebrating my (belated) birthday this weekend and get to party with my friends for once.

On with the links:

I saw an ad in the newspaper this week from GM extolling their new direction and the fact that they really are making cars that people want (compacts and hybrids). Somehow I really just can't trust that company any more. Apparently a lot of consumers don't either and car analysts have said that even if GM's cash flow problems stabilize, it will be incredibly challenging for them to regain the trust of consumers who frankly won't buy from a company they don't think is solvent.

Mi-Fi looks really cool, but what's the purpose if all handheld devices are Wi-Fi capable? And what kind of data charges would one see from using this device? Also I am confused about how to pronounce it. Is it Mi-Fi like "My-Fi" or is it Mi-Fi like Miffy?

John Legend sang about nutmeg last night on Stephen Colbert's Christmas show. Hilarious when he sings "the only residue I want wiping of your face is my NUTMEG" (go to 1:45)

Speaking of nutmeg, here's a great recipe for eggnog.

Advertising was sexist in 2008 - yeah but it wouldn't have shown unless test audiences responded favourably to it. Who's really sexist, marketers or the public? HuffPost broke down the top five sexist trends in advertising in 2008.

You know, Wikipedia is great for fan related information in amazing detail. It's one of those weird quirks of the dominance of user-generated content in web 2.0 when the entry for warp drive has a bigger page than that for the Canadian Constitution. Warp drive is fascinating though - you know it works by creating a bubble in subspace around the ship that expands space behind the bubble and shrinks space in front of the bubble. The spaceship essentially stays in one place while space moves around it. Now as for transwarp conduits, I'm really not sure how those work. The Borg seem to have a good understanding of the physics though.

I wanted to thank Keanu reeves for taking the tme to sit with us earlier this week. Pajiba has a hilarious page on the many faces of Keanu Reeves. You can really get a sense of his dramatic versatility.

Test your brain. This stuff is always fun. I like the emotional intelligence test.

It's really too bad that the Andromeda Strain bra (top) is sold out. I'm still looking for Christmas presents for my mom. Creative weird bras here.

And finally, hilarious news reporter meltdowns. Bill O'Reilly (Hard Copy) is really the best one.