Archive for the ‘Raspy Thoughts’ category


15 Mar 2014

Reader A (shivering): Qué frío tengo yo. Ay, qué frío.

Reader B: What? Is that Spanish?

Reader A: …

Reader B: Why are you speaking Spanish?

Reader A: I don’t know. It just seemed like a good idea. It’s kind of boring out here now that Hornblower isn’t around anymore.

Reader B: Yeah, I know what you mean. I’m kind of bitter about the whole thing. I mean, he just abandoned us.

Reader A: I guess he must have his reasons, though, I figure. I mean, I guess he must.

Reader B: Do you think so, though? It seems like he doesn’t really care anymore, like it’s not worth the effort for him. Which is bullshit, by the way, bec–


Readers A & B (Reader B just slightly behind, like half a beat. Classic dumbass Reader B move.): Hornblower!

Hornblower: It’s true I have returned from my long silence, and shoulder now the mantle once again. Too long have readers suffered such misfortune as rightly ought be borne by baser men.

Reader A: Well, I’m awfully glad you’re ba–


They splash’d and sputter’d daily at their toil, in hopes of tasting some slight succor soon, yet every evening they return’d still sickly, and clicked and double-clicked until the moon …

Reader B (hushed, to Reader A): What’s going on here? What’s he talking about?

Reader A: Shh, I think he’s talking about his absence. Listen.

Hornblower: … rose slow but certain, witness to the hope that loyal readers still maintained, despite the ever-growing doubt, and fear, and dread. They clicked and double-clicked until the light.

Where once new posts appeared as sure as spring
returns lost luster to long-barren lands;
where years ago great mirth and subtle wit
elevated tales of dope new bands.

Reader B: Is that iambic pentameter? It sounds like iambic pentameter.

Reader A: Well that last line was only nine syllables, but yeah I think for the —


Now page views dropped, and readers fell to sadness,
for sadness is a natural response
when what was once a fortress falls to ruin —
and blankness sits where thrived exquisite taunts.

Reader A: What’s next for Tin Speaker, Hornblower? What do you have left up the old sleeves in the old sleeve pockets?

Hornblower: Expect a lot of poop jokes and ostrich GIFs.

Reader A: Poop … and ostriches?

Hornblower: My SEO guy says that’s the only way to make this thing profitable. Apparently thousand-word concert reviews with no accompanying pictures don’t drive traffic the way they used to do.

Reader B: Did they ever, though, really?


Reader A: Seriously, Reader B. Get a grip on your life and your dignity.

Hornblower: You’re like a weirder John Travolta, minus the money and the Breitling watch. And minus Saturday Night Fever and Pulp Fiction, cos I liked those.

Reader A: Phenomenon was pretty good, too!

Hornblower: Are you fucking kidding me, Reader A.

Viral media content 

The Hornblower Guide to Walking in New York City

13 Mar 2012

Many people are afraid that when they come to New York City they will be identified as tourists immediately by the way they walk. This is pretty much true. Unfortunately, most people’s response to this apprehension is not the sensible one, which would be to walk more like a New Yorker and less like a little meatball that just sprouted legs and learned how to propel itself for the first time in the history of meatball. Instead, they resort to exaggerating their puffy, rotund, flyover-state walks, so that for certain stretches of Broadway the fastest way down the street may well be crowd-surfing. But it does not have to be that way. If everyone simply followed the Hornblower Essential Tips for the New York City Pedestrian, the streets of New York would be alleviated of much of their congestion and people would spend less time walking places, giving them more time to work on productive projects like jellyfish pictures and chillwave EPs.

Keep Moving This is the golden rule, far more important than any other, and for good reason. New Yorkers do not stop, do not question where they are going and do not slow down and debate which way to go while they’re approaching an intersection with a WALK sign. If you need to check your iPhone to make sure you’re heading in the right direction, do what everyone else does and duck into a Starbucks or, better yet, a phonebooth. You’ll be out of everyone’s way, and once you rejoin the flow you’ll know exactly where you’re going, giving you the confidence to keep up with the swarm.

Outstanding motion picture of the decade

10 Jan 2010

It’s really no contest. You will find no braver film, none more honest or more daring or more heartfelt, in this or any decade. Jaleel White proves that his revelatory Steve “Urkel” Urkel was no mere fluke, as his Michael here is both hero and villain, protagonist and antagonist, potatoe-salad eater and potatoe-salad … well, let’s just say you’ll have to see the movie! With Eddie Griffin as the wisecracking cousin or best friend or something, probably.

Dessert of the year 2009: the Kouign Amann

10 Jan 2010

God time

25 Dec 2009

Hey, so depending on where you are in the world it’s Christmas right now. As most of you already know, things can get pretty religious “up in this Tinspeaker bitch,” so if you’re uncomfortable with heavy Bible lifting, maybe you should just go back to one of my more heathen posts.

Let’s check up on Deuteronomy 23.

1He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD.”
Sorry, Lance.

2A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the LORD.”
A heaven without Eva Perón? No, thanks.

3An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the LORD for ever.”
This is more like it. Ammonites certainly have no place in the kingdom of heaven. And, yeah, anyone who names himself after a bomb probably doesn’t belong at the right hand of God.

20Unto a stranger thou mayest lend upon usury; but unto thy brother thou shalt not lend upon usury: that the LORD thy God may bless thee in all that thou settest thine hand to in the land whither thou goest to possess it.”
Are you kidding me, Pope Clement V? Don’t ban usury outright, just ban it against your own brother. Too late now. The Jews already control all the money.

24When thou comest into thy neighbour’s vineyard, then thou mayest eat grapes thy fill at thine own pleasure; but thou shalt not put any in thy vessel.”
Speaking of Rothschilds! I’m about to get at some Château Lafite Rothschild grapes HARD BODY. For free. Mmm mmm.

25When thou comest into the standing corn of thy neighbour, then thou mayest pluck the ears with thine hand; but thou shalt not move a sickle unto thy neighbour’s standing corn.”
I’ve plucked mad ears in my day. Thanks, Deuteronomy 23:25 for giving me something to wave in stupid Farmer Hitchenweather’s face when he comes out waving the shotgun like a madman (not the good kind). Sorry, Hitchenweather. God’s orders.

Though this is a Christmas special, maybe we’ll check out some more bible chapters sometime in the future. God knows I’ve got nothing else to do these days.

What happened to Craigslist?

24 Oct 2009

Even though is still atop my Firefox “Most Visited” tab, before today I hadn’t been on the site in quite a while. And I have returned to find it twisted and altered almost unimaginably.

When you search for something, you can now sort the results: most recent, best match, low price, high price. This sort of thing has no place in craigslist, which supposedly prides itself on not changing anything, ever. It’s the kind of thing that makes me want to hit someone in the mouth.

The other thing is, where are all the scalpers? I was expecting at least a few dozen listings for Dirty Projectors tickets, and a good amount for Girls, too. The selection was weaker than Reader Zero’s triceps. Does no one have $50 to spend on the latest buzz band anymore? Is craigslist cracking down? Am I going to have to find I new way to make money next semester? Don’t like the way this is going.

Also, typing ‘craigslist’ is always hard for me, for some reason. I usually write ‘craiglsit’ or ‘craigslit’ first. What’s with that?

These are giraffes

27 Sep 2009

Switching things up today here at Tin Speaker. Instead of a hilarious dialogue or a hilarious advertisement, I’m just going to give you a picture I took of a couple of giraffes. Think of it as a Christmas present, because you’re not going to get a real Christmas present from me.


Delving deeper

10 Aug 2009

Yesterday I discussed the preponderance of New Yorker articles entitled “String Theory,” and how none of them actually concern string theory, the titles being, instead, rather tired puns — usually based on the string instruments. Well, it’s not all about the fine arts over at 4 Times Square. In case any of my fine readers’ appetites were whetted by the words “string” and “theory” next to each other in the previous post, only to find no physics in sight, here‘s an article that isn’t called “String Theory” (thankfully; that would be terribly boring) but is about same. It’s a pretty neat, short summary of the present state of string theory and theoretical physics, and you should read it, because God knows you of all people can’t tell a boson from a bison!

Explorations in the New Yorker online archive

09 Aug 2009

Have you ever read the abstracts of humor pieces from the New Yorker archive? Of course you haven’t done, you uncultured sot. Well, let me just point you in the right direction. Read this and tell me what you think.

Pretty funny, no? I thought so, too. I’m glad we agree on the matter.

I also found another interesting, related (if you clicked the link) little something. There have been, this decade, no less than four pieces, plus a blog entry, in the New Yorker with the title “String Theory.” Observe here. Talk about weak. This is supposed to be the top cultural magazine in the world (maybe? I don’t really know. I assume it is.) and they’re using the same trite pun for articles about Joanna Newsom, Jasper Johns and French ready-to-wear fashion.

Needless to say, none of the articles are actually about string theory.

Further Paula Abdul news

08 Aug 2009

Some have questioned Hornblower’s influence as a major tastemaker in the blogosphere. (Side note: Firefox recognizes neither “tastemaker” nor “blogosphere” as words. I’m switching to Chrome.) Even after past posts have influence the likes of The New Yorker, the doubters remained skeptical. But in the face of great evidence, even the most ardent non-believers must surely relent.

Recall, if you will, a recent post. I discuss a Paula Abdul Twitter post in which she said that her fans never “seize to amaze” her. Is the Twitter post in question still up there? No, sir. Ms Abdul, or perhaps her publicist, read my scathing commentary and rushed to change it. Now it’s grammatically correct, but awfully boring. Judge for yourself. Perhaps I should have kept my fool mouth closed, knowing the power I wield. But no, I cannot. I have this platform, and I am duty-bound to uphold my obligation to talk mad smack. Nothing shall give me pause. Except if maybe I got a job. Then I’d probably slow down a little bit.