Today I turned 27. I was wished a happy birthday by my parents, my boyfriend, my co-workers, several dozen Facebook friends, and approximately four people on Twitter. I was also wished a happy birthday by Nelnet, a student loan firm contracted by the federal government, to which I currently owe $19,008.13.
As the New Republic celebrates its 100th birthday, how are we best to understand the magazine's century of ostentatious chin-stroking? As an attempt to declare by fiat a consensus politics for a nation of divided interests and purposes? An expression of the fundamental conservatism that underlies liberalism? A performance of whiteness?
With our imperfect knowledge and limited faculties constrained, as they are, by the hedges of time and space, we cannot "know," in the narrow, popularly-used sense of the word, which of the Ten Commandments Blake Lively violated that prompted God to turn her birthday into a bee hell, but it was probably 9.
About a year ago I moved into an apartment with two other long-haired girls and we made a cleaning schedule to keep everything in order. A few months in, I started getting complaints that when it was my turn to clean the bathroom, I did not remove the hairs that accumulate on the drain. I explained that this was because none of those hairs are actually mine as we all have very different hair colors and I have always had the habit of picking up to throw away my hairs every time I shower. (I also think that they don't clean other things properly but have never said anything because worse than being complained to about petty things is complaining about them). I quickly realized that both roommates were very spoilt and continued to believe that I should clean up after them, so I decided to oblige to their requests and start clearing the drain. Using their toothbrushes.
I don't know why it's not working either, my man! Your technique is perfect!
An entire decade ago, Gawker Media launched a D.C. spinoff called Wonkette. There were no iPhones or tablets or black presidents then, just crude weapons such as "blogs" and "the Blingee." Now-old editors including Alex Pareene, Jason Linkins, Josh Fruhlinger, Kirsten Boyd Johnson and "Ken Layne" are today sharing their mostly heartbreaking tales of madness, booze, blood and Santorum on this blessed anniversary. (Original editor Ana Marie Cox skipped the reunion.) Wonkette itself was spun off (to me!) in 2008, and continues as a filthy website about the vile comedy of politics, led by Wonkette-in-Chief Rebecca Schoenkopf.
For reasons that still aren't clear, Judy Viger thought it'd be a good idea to hire strippers for her son's 16th birthday party. Maybe she thought it'd make her a cooler mom. Maybe she lost a bet with her son. Or maybe she just has terrible judgement. Probably all three. Regardless of her reasoning, she hired the strippers and now she's facing the consequences. Four months after the party, Viger was arrested and charged with five counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
Today is January 8th, the 30th birthday of Kim Jong-un, North Korea's most powerful basketball enthusiast. Happy birthday big guy! North Korean news blog NKNews.org has taken the opportunity to introduce us to some of the ways in which brave North Korean people have been mocking Kim Jong-un in days leading up to his birthday. Apparently they're not super enthralled with the festivities, which have included such delights as "Street-Cleaning for the Leader's Birthday." Also, "compulsory apple-picking days"—the North Korean equivalent of a Chuck E. Cheese party.