Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Klassic KAR and a Programming Note

Blogging will be light this week. We are knee-deep in Kwanzaa right now so nobody's reading anyway.  We'll Rate the First Debate and resume the MOB Mayoral Campaign next week.

And yes, I am aware of the pissing match currently taking place on the Strib's letters page revolving around the depiction of wildlife in the comic strip Mark Trail. I'll save my outrage for when some moonbat goes after Pearls Before Swine.  Or LuAnn

If you are one of the four KAR readers still engaged this week and slavering for content, check out this classic post from 2006.  It's KAR's first (and only) book review, that holds up over time surprisingly well.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The 2011 Mayoral Debate Series: Question 1

RULES: Candidates may answer the following question in the comments to this post, or on their own blogs with a link back to in the comments to this post.  I know the typical KAR reader doesn't fully apprehend the concepts of "leaving a comment" or even general engagement, but I have faith that they will somehow figure it out.  Except for Ben.  He's a little slow.

Candidates, please watch the following video:





Question: What would you do to these twerps?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Moron Mail: Special Lifetime Achievement Edition

A couple weeks ago, we featured a particularly stupid letter to the Strib from a particularly dim person.  This outrage addled bitty thought that describing a serial bank robber by the color of the clothing he typically wears while plying his trade was somehow racist (since the color of this clothing was black).  This led to a brief editorial crisis as - because we like to think we are not racists here at KAR - all manner of idiom or description might offend this whack job's tender sensibilities.  For example, we would no longer be able to describe certain mate-slaughtering spiders, moonless nights, name certain local political reporters, discuss certain Chicago hockey teams, recall ancient World Series baseball point-shaving scandals or wax poetic about the purported appearance of George Soros' soul.

But then we realized that was just stupid. So we gave the letter a good fisking and dispatched the results into the internet ether.  That was that, or so we thought.

Alert reader and Bob Mould lookalike Kevin, points out that this was not the first time the crack KAR editorial staff has encountered this person.

A little over 6 years ago beloved former KARnie Dementee fished this stinky eelpout of a letter out of the peat bog of the Pioneer Press letters page, written by the aforementioned outrage-addled bitty:

I recently tried to co-sign a loan with my daughter for a used car she was buying. I'm a stay-at-home mom and have five joint accounts at this bank. I have done business with the bank for over a decade.
 We were denied the loan, because I don't have an earned income. My husband had to be called in to co-sign the loan.

With all the talk about family values from the far right, who control the economy, banks and legislation, I find it interesting that they do not appreciate the value of stay-at-home mothers and make it impossible for us to access our own money. I thought we dealt with this in the '60s.

SOOZ GIBBONERS
Stillwater

Let fierce intellect of that baby just wash over you for a minute.

whooooooooshhhhhhh



HOW DARE THOSE EVIL BANKSTERS NOT GIVE LOANS (access to "my" money!!!) TO WOMYN WHO CAN'T DEMONSTRATE AN ABILITY TO PAY THEM BACK!!!1111!1!1!1 BLEARGH!!!111111 (*Drools on self*)

Anyway, Dementee gave thing an average fisking (I'd give it a 2.5 out of 4 nightsticks).  The interesting thing is that he ostensibly concludes his rant with the following line:
 
You can’t, Susan, because it ain’t there you stupid, stupid woman.
 
Compare to my recent fisking of her "Man in Black" letter:
 
"THE SWEATSHIRT THIS ROBBER USUALLY WEARS IS BLACK YOU STUPID STUPID MORON!!!!!!"
 
One of the promises I made to myself when I brought KAR back is to avoid gratuitous name-calling unless it had some higher humor-related purpose (and I believe that, in context, that pullquote qualifies).  But I think it's illuminating that two letters to the editor from the same woman, written 6 years apart, would elicit the rare use of the "Double Stupid" from two different bloggers who have never met each other over a gulf of 6 years.
 
Many scientists or mathematicians would call this conclusive proof of the proposition asserted.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Meet the Candidates

The nomination process for the MOB Mayoral Race is now...

...

...

...

...

closed.

The MOB Mayor is a rich tradition amongst sparsely- to moderately-read Minnesota blogs.  The title of Mayor is a prestigious one. Previous MOB Mayors have gone on to big things like public elected office (Baniaiaiaiaiaiaiaiaiaiian) and oblivion (Johnny Roosh).

Let's take a look at the dregs suckers objects of our ridicule victims candidates.

CANDIDATE # 1: Bobo the Talking Chimp (KAR)

(Nominated by LearnedFoot) Bobo is a regular candidate who has come close to achieving the office in the past.  His lack of success is probably due to a speciesist electorate. Is the MOB ready for a Simian-American Mayor?

CANDIDATE #2: Mr. D (Mr. Dilettante's Neighborhood)


(SOSFL Ruling) Mr. D tried to nominate his sixteen year-old daughter in an effort to avoid the meat grinder that is the MOB Mayoral Campaign and presumably set up a puppet government.  The MOB Secretary of State will not stand for such shenanigans.  Also, 16 year old girls should not be exposed to KAR.  Therefore, Mr. D gets the nomination; and a big fat target on his back.
 
CANDIDATE #3: John "Master of Sausages" Stewart (Nightwriter)
 
(Nominated by Leo Pusatositusaterri) This is Mr. Stewart's first nomination.  He has served as the PostMilF Master of Sausages for the past several years and is also the defending Millard Fillmore Memorial Open Championship Golf Outing Classic champion.  Therefore he will be a force to be reckoned with among below-average golfers if he benefits from a generous handicap system.
 
CANDIDATE #4: Ben (Independent / no blog provided)
 
(Self-nominated) Ben is definitely a candidate.
 
CANDIDATE #5: Kevin "Kevie" Ecker (EckerNet)
 
(Self-nominated) Ecker is a perennial candidate who has lost every single election or award he has ever been nominated for.  On the other hand, the MOB Secretary of State for Life is very close to endorsing Mr. Ecker due to his uncanny resemblence to a Husker Du era Bob Mould: 


Mould (right)

Ecker



CANDIDATE #6: redsquirrel (Red Squirrel Report)

(Self-nominated) I have absolutely no idea who this guy is.


DISQUALIFIED NOMINATIONS:

The following nominees were disqualified from participating in the election for the stated reasons:

* Mr. D's Children (Impressionable minors / obvious attempt to set up a puppet regime)

* Dog Gone (Not a MOBster / annoying comment troll on someone else's blog / contributor to a doucheblog / insufferable scold / nominated by a fictional parody)

* Karl Bremmer (Not a MOBster / contributor to a doucheblog / possibly suffers from several psychological disorders)

* Some Guy's Prolapsed Rectum (Not a MOBster / gross body part)

* Bogus Doug (Term-limited.  Although there may be a loophole here...(looking at attorneys)...no? Our lawyers are telling us no. Maybe.)

*****

I appologize for the quality of the field.  Debates begin tomorrow or, more probably, Thursday.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Why Facebook Sucks (But Not as Badly as Twitter)

EDITOR'S NOTE. This is part 2 of the ongoing KAR series, "Social Media and You: How to Alienate Everybody in Your Online Social Networks."  Part 1, Twitter, is here.

Yeah, yeah, privacy issues, never-ending Farmville requests and the never-popular Weekly User Interface Tweak That's Always Worse Than the Last One. Yawn. Those are annoying to be sure, but just like Twitter, Facebook's most annoying features come not from the platform itself, but from the people who use it.  Let's begin.

THE VAGUE PITY WHORE

Susan Flugelhorn I really wish that things would go my way once in a while.

And, of course, a caring friend will come along and ask what's wrong; to which there are inevitably one of two replies.  Either:

Susan Flugelhorn I'll private message you.

Or:

Susan Flugelhorn Oh never mind.

Well, thanks for wasting everybody's time because you haven't received your attention quota today.


PEOPLE WHO HAVE A DIFFERENT OPINION OF POLITICS THAN YOUR OWN

There's an old bit of wisdom that Noted Marquette Alumnus Denbo passed on to me once: Never talk religion or politics with family or certain friends; especially in public.  That makes sense considering those two topics can evoke the most emotion and could possibly lead to an ugly situation.

Now, Facebook is the place to go to communicate with friends and family and maybe reconnect old, long-forgotten acquaintances (THEY WILL FIND YOU).  So pictures of the kids, pithy bon mots, personal news and maybe the occasional brag about the latest accomplishment or vacation are certainly not out of line.  After all, that's pretty much the point of Facebook.

But, oh yeah - the family politics thing.  When I see something like this:


 it makes me want to choke the shit out of you.  But you're family / close friend, and therefore I'm required to love you, and I sure as hell shouldn't have to be forced to consider unfriending you.  Take that crap to Twitter where you can write it under an assumed name so I won't know that it's you.


OUTRAGEOUS SELF-AFFIRMERS WHO OBVIOUSLY HAVE SERIOUS PATHALOGICAL SELF-ESTEEM ISSUES

The following status update once graced my timeline (extensively paraphrased, because this person has since unfriended me due to a wisecrack I made about this very same status; trust me, if anything, I am not doing the original justice):

I WILL SHARE WHAT I WANT WHEN I WANT! (Yes, the entire thing was in caps -ed.).  THIS IS MY FACEBOOK NOT YOURS, SO DON'T TELL ME WHAT TO POST!
I AM STRONG! 
I AM OPINIONATED!
I AM CONFIDENT!
I DO NOT CARE WHAT YOU THINK! I WILL SHARE WHAT I WANT TO SHARE!
IF YOU DON'T LIKE IT DON'T READ IT! I DON'T NEED YOUR APPROVAL! I AM AN INDEPENDENT WOMAN AND I CAN MAKE MY OWN JUDGEMENTS ON WHAT I DO AND DO NOT POST ON MY WALL!

From what I could tell at the time, this was a completely spontaneous explosion of self-righteous outrage, unprovoked by anyone ever complaining about what this person posted on her wall.  In a comment to this post, underneath 7 or 8 "YOU GO GIRL"'s, I wrote:

Personally, I'd prefer it if you just shared your booze.

...which led to this strong, opinionated, confident, independent woman who doesn't care what anyone thinks to unfriend me.

Oh darn.


POST THIS AS YOUR STATUS IF YOU REALLY HATE FACEBOOK MEMES

Yeah, you know this one:

Post this as your status if you know someone who has survived cancer, or has died from cancer, or is afraid of getting cancer.  Let's see if we can have everybody have this status for one hour so that people who have / have died from / are afraid of cancer know that we support them! I know that 7% of my friends won't post this, so let's hear it for the AWESOME 93% that will!

I do know someone who has survived cancer.  She doesn't give a shit that you posted this as your status. Stop it.


STUPID IMAGE MACROS WITH INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES THAT MAKE YOU WANT TO BARF, WHICH COULD HAVE JUST AS EASILY BEEN WRITTEN AS A STATUS UPDATE THAT WOULD MAKE YOU WANT TO BARF

This is a relatively new Facebook thing that seriously has me considering changing careers to the professional homicidal misanthrope field:

Yes, this actually exists.
What a great quote! If only there were some way of making these words on Facebook with a keyboard!

Fine, you saw a hackneyed quote.  Why not just copy it as a status?  Is there something about making it an image with or without a schmaltzy picture that somehow makes it more impactful or less nausea-inducing?  Every time I see them, I think this:




I don't know why, but the more I see these things the more I want to punch a kitten. But since that would probably send me down an unveering path toward homicidal misanthropy (and ultimately prison), I just decided to make my own:



Click to embiggenate.

Post as your status if you agree!

Last Call

This is the last day to submit your MOB Mayoral nominations.  We'll start the ugliness of the campaign this week.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Previews of Coming Attractions

Last month, I uncorked an instant classic rant about why Twitter sucks. You Twitter lovers / Facebook haters (the "Team Edward" of social media) will be glad to know it's Facebook's turn next. Or, rather, like twitter, certain Facebook users who ruin it for the rest of us non-needy non-attention whores.

Unions Exist to Protect, Assault, the Little Guy

Anybody who has seen coverage of the Wisconsin public unions' extended hissy fits relating to Wisconsin's collective bargaining reform (and subsequent gubernatorial recall effort) need no further evidence that this crowd is comprised of mouth-breathing zealots who will stop at nothing to fight for their rights to not have to contribute to their own health care plans.

But here's some anyway:

Kenosha teacher featured in an ad for Gov. Scott Walker said Monday that she's not sure if she'd do it again.

In her first interview with WISN 12 News, Kristi LaCroix, a teacher at Lakeview Technology Academy in the Kenosha School District, revealed the threats she has received since the ad was launched just before Thanksgiving.

Because solidarity means never having to have a conscience.

"You are alone in the wilderness," one person wrote to her in an email. "Your best bet is to start a job search soon. Better hope the unemployment gets extended. Enjoy your isolation."

Well that's not so bad.  Just a statement of fact: when you take sides against the family union, expect to get squashed. I mean it's not like a threat of bodily harm or something like that.

She told 12 News that she has been blistered by negative and vicious emails and phone messages at school and on Facebook, including one suggesting she get protection.

Ah, there it is.

"I just want to go in my classroom and teach," LaCroix said, "I get it now, why people don't speak up."

That's exactly what they're counting on. The Democrats they continually bribe contribute to to keep the public cash flowing all got chased from office.  Intimidation's all they've got left.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

It Would Be Even More Apt if It Were Called "Person Of Our Planet"

Time Magazine's Person of the Year is...

[Drumroll]

Ta da:





















It makes perfect sense if you consider the acronym "Person Of The Year" forms.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Fiat Candidacy

Yes, KAR hosts ads now. I would make a wisecrack here, but I'm pretty sure anything I'd write would be against AdSense's TOS, so I won't in the interest of keeping that sweet sweet gravy train rolling.

But I would like to draw attention to one ad that's been in heavy rotaton lately:


Send your fiat currency in, so this man can put a stop to fiat currency!

Judging from the legions of followers who reflexively exclaim "Errrrr...FIAT CURRENCY!!!1!11!" at the slightest provocation, why is the the R0n P@ul campaign asking for "money"?  Maybe he has faith it will hold its value 'til at least the Florida primary?

I wonder if the camaign accepts contributions of gold ingots.       

Friday, December 09, 2011

KAR's Whiskey of the Week (Vol. I)

This new weekly(?) KAR feature is brought to you by the good folks at Apple Valley Liquors: the place to buy booze if you're in Apple Valley, and you are me.

When rating whiskey (or anything for that matter) the one thing you need is an inflexible rating system that weighs certain irrelevant aspects of the thing being rated as importantly as the relevant ones. And no scale fits that bill better than the one Chad the Elder over at Fraters Libertas uses to rate beers he gets for free (the bastard).

For some reason, whenever I see Chad employ his rigid beer-tasting rubrics, I am reminded of this famous cinematic moment:



Since I have nothing more relevant to whiskey to go by on such short notice, mainly from lack of looking, we'll just have to crib the beer tasting Protocols of the Elder for our purposes today.

So our whiskey of the week is the new 2 Gingers Irish Whiskey.  2 Gingers is distilled in special batches in Ireland (in the good and holy part; not the sodding limey scum part) as directed and imported by local publican Kieran Folliard, owner of The Local and Kieran's Irish Pub in downtown Minneapolis.

Clear glass bottle with the name printed vertically down a brown label. Kieran's signature appears over an Irish flag.  The bottle has a screw cap with a thread that strips easily meaning you can't fully tighten it. The neck has an aesthetically pleasing bulge in it too. Overall, a nice looking bottle that appears well-suited to pouring its contents into a glass or flask.  However, if you are going to pour it into a flask, I suggest using a funnel.


STYLE: Irish whiskey.

Alcohol by volume: 40%

COLOR (0 to 2): Brown. Like whiskey. 2

AROMA (0 to 2): Smells like whiskey and alcohol. 2

HEAD (0 to 2): There is no head. It's whiskey. Good lacing. 0

TASTE (0 to 5): Strong whiskey flavor on the pull. There's more of a bite to it on the palate than Jameson's or that other fooking scum-buggering limey Irish swill which name shall appear naught ever on this page.  There is an oaky quality that gives an almost bourbony taste; no doubt from being aged in sherry casks.  Lot's of heat on the finish.  Eminently drinkable. Unlike the whiskey's moniker, this baby's got soul! (I'm sorry, but there are a lot of people waiting for that joke, and I wouldn't be doing my job if I didn't give it to them.  I personally find redheads to be hot, soul or no soul.) 4

AFTERTASTE (0 to 2): I could set the carpet on fire with my breath. 2

OVERALL (0-6): Wait. Didn't I just already rate every aspect of this spirit including it's fooking color? This seems redundant and duplicative.  I'll just add up the scores I already gave. 10

TOTAL SCORE (0-19): 20

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Moron Mail

Strap yourselves in. Today's moron can't seem to grasp the import of a common preposition:

I noticed that you referred to the recent serial bank robber as the "Man in Black" ("'Man in Black' changes clothes for latest heist," Dec. 7).

Because that's what the FBI calls him, due to the fact that he wore a black hoodie in previous robberies.

This infers that the robber is a black man, even though you know he's white.

No.  It doesn't.  Allow me:

REMEDIAL ENGLISH FOR THE CHRONICALLY AGGRIEVED

There are threee words in "Man in Black".  1) Man. 2) In. 3) Black.  All three of these words work together to make a description of our perp.  Let's take them in turn:

Man.  A male of the human species; for example, "that person over there with the penis is a man".  This bank robber is a man.

In.  A prepostion used to indicate inclusion within something else; for example, "a man in clothing".  This bank robber wears clothing.

Black.  The color of darkness, obsidian, coal; for example, "THE SWEATSHIRT THIS ROBBER USUALLY WEARS IS BLACK YOU STUPID STUPID MORON!!!!!!"

He was recently shown on the evening news wearing a yellow jacket, but is still being referenced as the "Man in Black" and not the "Man in Yellow."

See linked article above.

Please state the news clearly and accurately. This is a white male robbing people.

You can criticize the Strib all you want, but referring to a robber as the "Man in Black" who was nicknamed by the agency investigating him as the "Man in Black", is pretty straight-up reporting. Perhaps the letter writer is insinuating Eric Holder is a racist?

Perhaps you will do a story on the harm this type of racism causes.

I hope not.  If you give crazy people what they want, they'll just want more.

Once you research the subject, you may find that your writers will be more careful with their rhetoric. I know journalists value accuracy.

SOOZ GIBBONER, STILLWATER

I am researching the subject now.

...

...

Ok. Done.  When I hear "Man in Black" two things pop immediately to mind.  And this has been confirmed by an incredibly scientific Google image search.

1) The movie "Men in Black":




 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Men in black movie poster.  Note:
one "man in black" is "white".
 
2) Johnny Cash, the original Man in Black:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Johnny Cash: notorious white guy.
 
Note that neither of those things is racially tinged in least because I - and I suspect everybody other than some knee-jerking bitty in lily-white Stillwater - knows what the meaning of "in" is.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

It's On in a Manner Not Unlike Donkey Kong

As I promised yesterday, it's time to begin the 2011-2012 MOB / ORGASMB Mayoral campaign! Here's how it will go:

STEP 1: Nominations will be taken by me (as acting MOB Secretary of State for Life) until I don't feel like taking them any more. Candidates must fit the following criteria:

1) Be a member of the MOB or ORGASMB in good standing or an anthropomorphic foul-mouthed chimp.

2) Is not nor ever has been associated with certain known doucheblogs.

3) Paulbots will be dealt with amusingly.

But Foot - shouldn't we hold a recall election to remove the current mayor first?

Well, that would be stupid.  What kind of deranged jackasses would recall a perfectly competent and honest politician when we have periodic elections on dates certain to allow the populace to make the decision to remove said politician.  I mean you have to be a real soulless, self-entitled, rage-addicted and vindictive ninny to do something so drastically overwrought and wrong.  Stupid hypothetical fuckers.

Where was I? Oh yeah:

STEP 2: After a 73 debates and a period of mudslinging and general slanders, an election will be held among all candidates.  Simple majority wins.  If no candidate gets a simple majority, we have a runoff election between the top two candidates.

KAR hereby nominates Bobo to be your next mayor. [ACCEPTANCE SPEECH]


Submit your nominations now. Go.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

KAR FAQ - Extreme Makeover: Bobo Edition

Time once again, after a long absence, to reach into the hypothetical mailbag to extract conjectural reader questions and provide theoretical responses as if they had actually been real.

So, you're uh back then.  Huh?

Yes.  I guess.

Well, that's something then, isn't it?

I suppose.

I know that you are a must-read inside the State Capitol.  Is there anything you'd like to say to our elected representatives?

Yes.  *ahem*

Build the Block E casino.  Build it now.  Build it large.  Make it nice. Now.

Oh no! Surely you don't support the expansion of gambling! Think about all the secondary effects and new gambling addicts!! WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN???!!!?1!!/??

I don't give a flying crap about the children (other than my own - the ones I'm responsible for). I can throw craps in Nevada and Wisconsin and even Io-freaking-wa, but in Minnesota I am not allowed to wedge my way into a crowded $10 table next to the stickman - as is our God-given right as sentient human adults. What kind of pansy are you anyway?

B-b-b-b-b-but what about the Indians?

What about 'em?  Block E is planned to be an upscale (think: Belaggio) joint in downtown Minneapolis - 30 miles from the nearest Indian casino. The two casinos would appeal to two different types of clientele.  Block E would draw the swanky martini-swilling Don Draper crowd as well as visitors staying downtown for the annual comic book or Furry conventions.  Mystic Lake won't lose an iota of their current target demographics: dessicated elderly slot jockeys hooked up to oxygen tanks and frat boys who think they know how to count cards.

But if it makes you feel any better, allow the Indians to host craps tables too.  It can be like downtown Vegas vs. the Strip 500x odds versus 5x odds and low vs. high table minimums.

You state a compelling case!  And the Vikings could then build their stadium without any taxpayer money!

Whoa there, Petunia!  I never said anything about giving any money to the Vikings.  That would just be stupid.
Moving on, I have a question that I am sure is burning in every mind in KAR Nation: Is Bobo the Talking Chimp® still alive?

Yes he is. And he is now 73% creepier. Bobo?

What ever happened to the MOB Mayor?

I don't know. I've been on hiatus for two years.  You tell me.

Well, the mayor was this guy named Johnny Roosh.  But he disappeared and hasn't been heard from in a long time.  The ensuing power vacuum has sown uncertainty and discord throughout the MOB.

The MOB is dead, remember? ORGASMB is the big new thing.


Oh come on! "ORGASMB" is just some silly fake thing you came up with to brilliantly express a point through satire like you always do.

ORGASMB is real, alright.  You just can't fake something like ORGASMB.

Whatever. Will you please moderate an emergency special election for MOB mayor anyway?  A desperate MOB neeeeeeds you!

*sigh* I suppose.  Coming soon, I guess.  But I warn you: in recent years, the MOB mayoral election has meant nothing but ennui and ruin to those unlucky enough to win it.  In fact, you have to go back to the first Mayor to even see anything even remotely resembling excellence in the office.  But I could be wrong.  I'm out of touch, and it's been a while since I thought about any of this.

Mister, we could use a man like Bogus Doug again.

Yeah...um, about Bogus Doug...

What?

[Discrete whispering]

...

Wow.

This KAR FAQ is over!

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Paulbots Can Teach Us a Lot About Something or Other

NOTE: The following post has been Google-proofed for the author's sanity.

In the past couple weeks, I have learned the following things thanks to disciples acolytes worshipers fanatics supporters of perenial presidential also-ran R0n P@u1.  This is more a recap than anything:

1. Jews hate Sharia law because Sharia law forbids demand or payment of interest and all Jews are bankers.

2. "They" (whomever that is) delete or censor everything from freedom loving Americans, or something.

3. I, among other things:

a) Am ignorant;

b) Involved in some sort of "circle jerk" (whatever that is, but I sure hope he didn't mean the Urban Dictionary definition of that term);

c)  Don't think for myself;

d) Need my "infolio divirsified" (I have no idea).

4. The CIA is responsible for everything that has gone on in Egypt in the past few months.

5.  Any politician anywhere who ever had a lapse of judgement or deviated the even the slightest iota from 100% snow-white pure Libertarian orthodoxy is the devil spawn; satan incarnate walking amongst us, whose very existance debases us all.

6. Just a general observation: why be merely wrought when you can be overwrought?

Those R0n P@u1 folks sure know a lot of stuff no one else knows about!

I think this may become a regular feature.