Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Thirsty Turtle

I apologize in advance to Professor Lindemann because this blog entry will somewhat revolve around the general theme of drinking, but I have to do it.

The Thirsty Turtle was the textbook definition of a fad, as it briefly swept through College Park from the winter of 2007 to the winter of 2011 luring underage students into its double glass doors.  Turtle was always the bar with a line wrapped around Potbelly’s, but rarely was “filled to maximum capacity.”  At least that’s what they said.  Try walking into the upstairs of Turtle and staying for over 15 minutes when the bar was jam-packed with sweaty college students.  It was a tough feat.
Thirsty Turtle In the Day Light
Image from here.
Anyhow, the funny thing about Turtle was how its reputation evolved.  When it opened during the winter months of my freshman year, word on the street was it was the bar that would not accept any fake IDs.  We all know that that didn’t last for very long.  In fact, the bar’s reputation immediately did a complete 180 and instantly became known as the bar where you only needed a cut out ID with your first grade picture glued onto the front.  Often times the bouncer would laugh, criticize your ID, hand it back to you and let you in the doors; all of this with a police officer standing immediately next to him.  It was truly amazing that the bar lasted as long as it did. 
A Completely Valid ID to Show the TT Bouncers
Image from here.
Some Things One Would Encounter at TT on a Typical Night:
  • Techno jams...especially on Techno Tuesdays
  • Upstairs filled to the brim with sweaty students
  • A person acting like Bill Gates with a $10 bill at the bar [especially on 50 cent rail nights] 
  • People making out left and right 
  • Kids grinding on each other, groping each other and getting to "know" each other...on a "very" personal level...
  • Drinks at an unbelievably low price.  Key word being unbelievable because the drinks you were ordering were not the drinks you were getting.  For instance, you order a shot of "$2 Grey Goose" you're really getting a shot of 10 cent Ruble.  
  • Watch the owner of Turtle drop a college kid causing a scene
  • Girls fighting to get on the stage to grind with each other
  • A pretty legit bathroom experience because if I have to award Turtle for something it would be having the most bathrooms of any of the other CP bars.  So for a quick bathroom experience that did not resemble the Middle Eastern conflict like its competing bar, the Mark, Turtle I commend you.
Unfortunately, Turtle met its demise on one very sad, sad night.  After years of being the epicenter of CP life, especially for the underagers, the bar was brought down after four students were stabbed.  The bar was officially pronounced dead on November 3, 2011, but the memories from TT [or lack there of] will never be forgotten.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Mashup Songs

Gregg aka Girl Talk performing
Image from here.
I remember the very first time I was introduced to the mashup genre.  I was at Bonnaroo in the summer of 2006 and stumbled upon some random stage, in fact it was the Which stage.  If you are unfamiliar with the Bonnaroo stage system, the stages are arranged as three tents: Which Tent, This Tent and The Other Tent. Confusing. Annoying. Hilarious.  Anyhow, I was at Which tent? Oh yeah, the Which Tent, and all a sudden a loud voice comes over the mic:  

“Yoooo BONNAROO!!! This is the biggest event I have ever played.  My name is Gregg and this is Girl Talk. Enjoy.”  

My A.D.D. found its musical soulmate…the mashup.  The wonderful combination of different songs and sounds became an instant sensation.  Immediately after that summer at Bonnaroo, Girl Talk blew up and today is known by people of all ages.  The mashup genre since has blown up as well and it has even come up in a recent class discussion, which was my inspiration behind writing this blog post...

Some Mashup Masters of Today: Girl Talk, Milkman, SuperMash Bros., White Panda, Ludachrist, DJ Earworm and Weezyer 

Any more mashup masters anyone?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

UMD Athletes and Their Scooters

Maryland Athletes Scooters on campus
Image from here.
So everyone has to have seen the Maryland athletes zipping around campus on their sweet scooters.  I mean I know I am always jealous when I am in a hurry trying to walk fast, but too tired to really pick up the pace and all a sudden a scooter rolls along by me, usually with two guys on it.  I don’t know why there is so much guy-on-guy action on those scooters, but for some reason it is all the rage on campus, or is it just me?  Anyhow, I digress. 

The scooters have actually led to many problems amongst their athlete owners.  I mean who would’ve guessed that letting athletes drive around on a scooter without a helmet would lead to any problems?  Unfortunately some of the consequences have been pretty dire.  For instance, while riding on his scooter one Maryland football player Pete DeSouza was struck by a car.  Another Maryland cornerback Dexter McDougle was involved in a single scooter accident where he broke his clavicle.   These two accidents have led the newly instated Maryland football coach Randy Edsall to put a ban on the scooters for the upcoming 2011 season. 

Probably a smart move, but I do feel for the football players who never abused their scooter privileges and are being penalized.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Silly Bandz

When Silly Bandz hit the market in 2010, kids worldwide found a new way to annoy the hell out of their elementary school teachers. #winning.  What was it they discovered? Well, technically rubberbands, but not just any ratty old yellow/brown old school rubberbands.  Silly Bandz are rubberbands that come in all sorts of shapes and sizes in every color of the rainbow.  If you have been living under a rock for the past year here is what some Silly Bandz look like:
Image from here.

And if you spent the last year in any sort of elementary school during the outburst of the Silly Bandz you probably saw a million little kids with wrists like this:
Image from here

The Silly Bandz epidemic of the past year was very reminiscent of the tamagotchi epidemic of my era. Elementary schools banned the Bandz proclaiming they were distracting and dangerous [apparently some kids got their circulation cut off by have too many!].  They sure are cute though and I am almost embarrassed to admit I cannot resist them.  Team Silly Bandz all the way, just not so many!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Foreign Fad [Thanks to Noble]

So I have been challenged this week to find a foreign fad and discuss it by my friend and classmate, Noble. I began searching the Internet to find some fun fads around the world and China has taken the cake for the weirdest new fad. We all know that China does not have the best reputation when it comes to human rights.  Well, apparently China has no regard for animal rights as well. It appears that the latest fad in China is having keychains containing live turtles and fish in them.  Weird, right?

Picture of a goldfish keychain in China
Image from here.

Well, it's not just weird, it's pretty messed up.  I mean, I get that a live fish or a live turtle would make a pretty cool keychain, but at what expense to the poor little creature? There is certainly no way to feed the fish or turtles in the keychain, so what happens?  The answer: they die. Apparently, the Chinese vendors claim that the water is nutrient rich, but it is a bunch of nonsense (click here for more details).  The turtles or fish meet their demise in a few days, but hey, you sure looked cool with that keychain, right?

Wrong.  It definitely is NOT cool having a dead fish or a dead turtle hanging in a plastic bag from your keys. It is unfortunate that this is legal in China and it is more unfortunate that people waste their money on such things.  Thoughts?