Category Archives: Pop-Culture

Moth Into Flame

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If you’ve been dropping by the lair for more than a few weeks then you probably know that I’ve been a huge Metallica fan since the mid 1980s when they released Master Of Puppets. So the other day I’m at the gym listening to some testosterone inducing station on Spotify. And out of the blue ‘Moth Into Flame’ pops up, which confused the heck out of me as I had been completely unaware that Metallica was releasing a new album. I thought to myself ‘wait a minute, this sounds like some of their old stuff but somehow I must have missed this one‘. You can imagine my joy when I later realized what was actually going on.

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Life in a Minor Key

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Preface: I’m quite aware what happened with Doha; I’ve been following it every second; but I thought we’d all just take a break from market talk until Monday’s regular open.

It’s obvious that music is a big part of the lives of Slopers, as it is one of the most frequently-shared and discussed items in the comments section. There is no shortage of posts specifically about music, and I thought I’d add another.

When I was in high school and college, a question I’d invariably ask a person I just met was what kind of music they liked. It was, for me, somewhat of a litmus test, just as effective as glancing at the contents of their bookshelves. The worst answer was along the lines of, “I like anything, as long as it’s got a good beat and I can dance to it.” Such an answer assured me I would never want to talk to this person again.

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Jesus in a Bright Red Cup

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Although Slopers have proved themselves a passionate lot, even when it comes to as pedestrian a topic as Krazy Glue, I’m going to remove my shoes and go tromping through the verboten topic of religion, because it’s been on my mind, thanks to the widely-reported kerfuffle that the management of Starbucks, by way of changing their holiday cups to a simple red design with no holiday imagery, have proved that they hate Jesus.

The chap declaring this ostensible war declares “I think in the age of political correctness we become so open-minded our brains have literally fallen out of our head.” It’s not surprising, I suppose, that such a fellow would commit so many verbal pratfalls in the span of a single sentence, but I’d rather set aside the syntactical foibles and misuse of “literally” and focus on the bigger picture.

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Two Ways Of Hedging Disney

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Dying To See Star Wars

One of the trending hashtags on Twitter in recent weeks was #ForceForDaniel, a campaign to get an early screening of the new Star Wars movie for a dying fan, Daniel Fleetwood. Director J.J. Abrams had the film screened for the man at his home, as The Verge noted below.

It wasn’t the first time, incidentally, that Abrams accommodated a dying fan: In 2009, he gave the late Randy Pausch (of Last Lecture fame) a cameo in his Star Trek reboot.

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Apple Loses Its Cool

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The Tao of Steve

In the movie “The Tao of Steve” (2000), the lead character associates the name “Steve” with cool, charismatic men such as the actor Steve McQueen. Apple (AAPL) co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs was famously cool and charismatic, and when he passed away three years ago, investors wondered what impact that would have on the company. As we now know, Apple rocketed to new highs over the next few years. The company had a product pipleline in place, and a wide moat: the convenience of upgrading to a new iPhone, for example, and keeping all of your data and apps, was and still is a powerful inducement to remain an Apple customer. Reactions to Apple’s San Francisco product launch event on Wednesday, however, suggest that Apple may have finally ran out of the residual Steve Jobs cool factor.
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