Friday, December 31, 2010

No Friday 80s Flashback for December 31, 2010

No Friday 80s Flashback for today. But that doesn't mean you have to go without 80s tunes as you celebrate the new year. Pick your favorite from the 80s Flashback Archives!

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Myth of Santa?

Is Santa Claus a myth?

Santa is indeed a myth. But only in the original and not the corrupted, modern sense of the word. To those of us who know better, myth ≠ untrue. Myth is the truest, most important thing in the world. Myth describes events that never happened, and yet are happening to us still. Myth tells us about individuals who could never have existed, and yet reach out to us even today.

Endeavor to live a mythic life!

Friday 80s Flashback for December 24, 2010

[Winter Holidays: Week 4] -- Welcome to the fourth and final installment of the Winter Holidays-themed 80s flashbacks. Yes, I took time out my own busy Christmas Eve to bring you a brief respite from your holiday preparations. And what a collection we have today!

Read and hear more after the jump.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Reason for the Season?

Winter Solstice Buddha Painting by Cherie Glasco

Oh, we're knee deep in the holiday season now, aren't we? Hanukkah has passed. The Winter Solstice is upon us, and Christmas and Kwanzaa are coming up this weekend. Of course, it wouldn't be December without claims that there is a War on Christmas (history), debates over whether to use "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays," arguments over the holiday's Pagan/Heathen roots (and even calls to return to the holiday's pagan roots), atheist appeals to reason, astronomical explanations for the Winter Solstice, crying over "Xmas" as crossing Christ out of Christmas, and all sorts of other nonsense.

Are you feeling the holiday warmth now?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday 80s Flashback for December 17, 2010

[Winter Holidays: Week 3] -- Oh, we're counting down the days now, aren't we? One week from Christmas Eve. If you're like me, you're caught in the midst of preparing for the Solstice and the upcoming full moon, and you're behind on Christmas cards and shopping. Maybe it's time for a break. Hey, flashbacks make for great breaks! What flashbacks do I have for your sonic stockings this week? Well, read and hear more after the jump.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday 80s Flashback for December 10, 2010

[Winter Holidays: Week 2] -- Well, that week pretty much flew by and we're right back at another Friday, ready for some 80s tunes. As I put the finishing touches on this week's holiday offerings, there are flurries dancing about on a breeze just beyond my window. The snow, and the fact that I did a bit of gift shopping and then adjusted the tree, certainly puts me in the Seasons Greetings kind of mood. What marvelous stocking stuffers have I for you this week? Well, read and hear more after the jump.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

War on Christmas, or War on Diversity?

Marci A. Hamilton argues that "War on Christmas" rhetoric is actually a war on diversity. And you know what? I think she has a valid argument! The money moment comes in the sixth paragraph:
Given the prevalence of Christmas in the culture, why do people feel insulted by the judicial decisions holding that the courthouse can’t have a crèche, or the school choir can’t sing only Christian music at the public school annual holiday concert?I suppose it is because there was a time when no one challenged them. Culturally, we came to expect such displays, and it feels like we have a right, but also, emotionally, it is scary to have them removed from our universe. For a Christian, and perhaps other believers, they were a comfort. At base, many apparently feel that if the government can’t support our Christian celebration, then we are losing control and power over the most important values in the culture. But these responses lack historical perspective.
From that point on, Ms. Hamilton obliges the reader with a very necessary, albeit brief, summary of the historical facts. I don't know if the folks who most need to read this piece will even see it, but it's handy to have in your hip pocket if you ever find yourself dealing with, say, Mr. O'Reilly and his associates at Fox News (or one of their fans).

Read The War on Diversity over at

Friday, December 03, 2010

Friday 80s Flashback for December 3, 2010

[Winter Holidays: Week 1] -- Ah, December. Remember when the holiday season waited until after Thanksgiving before it truly kicked into gear? No? Well, that's no surprise. I can barely recall that either. But at least here, on Prophet or Madman, no one can be accused of jumping the holiday gun (or, hopefully, the shark). And now that we are finally in the most wonderful time of the year, it's safe to break into songs about winter, snow, Christmas, Santa, etc. And because so much wonderful holiday music came out of the 80s, we're going to stretch this theme to cover four weeks. That's right. Today's Flashback is the first of a four part series!

Read and hear more after the jump.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

The Theory of Hipster Relativity

Dustin Glick weighs in with the astonishingly accurate Theory of Hipster Relativity

Vikings' Barbaric Bad Rap Beginning to Fade

"'The Norsemen were not just warriors, they were farmers, artists, shipbuilders, and innovators,' said Ingmar Jansson, a professor of archaeology at Stockholm University in Sweden. 'More than anything, they were excellent traders who connected peoples from Baghdad to Scandinavia to the mainland of North America.'"

Read the full article at National Geographic: Vikings' Barbaric Bad Rap Beginning to Fade

LEGOs and Dreams

Over on Facebook, a friend posted his shock over the price of Star Wars LEGOs. He asked, "Are LEGOs mined in Africa or something?" To which I replied:

"LEGOs are expensive because they are made from the crushed dreams of cubicle dwellers. While plentiful, the dreams are rather difficult to distill properly."

Photos of LEGO Cubicles (Via: TrendHunter and thinkgeek)