NTMP 56: Big veg
Crashing into foliage to steal your girl.
The Phrases, With Context
If you’re new here, welcome! If you’ve been around for a while, thanks for sticking around. I appreciate your support so much.
This week we have a badass bird, food-themed fashion, consequence culture, and more.
But first, a poll!
It’s time for the February 2023 Fave Phrase of the month!
Another poll? Yes!
Did you fill out my Gen-X poll yet? Now’s your chance. Clicky-clicky. Big thanks to those of you who have responded so far; your answers are really helpful to the new project I’m working on.
Let’s get to it!
1. Pacific baza
Get a load of this buddy:
He looks like he’s trying to look tough for his high school portrait. All this needs is a brick wall or train tracks in the background. Maybe a big tree.
As far as birds go, there’s a lot going on here - the jaunty crest, the stripy belly, the blue-gray face and blue-tipped shoulders. I LOVE HIM. If you look at other photos, their golden eyes are both striking and hilarious in that they often look startled.
The best fact I found about this bird, which is native to Australia, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and parts of coastal Africa is that it “crashes into foliage to snatch insect prey.” So, the ADHDer of hawks.
Alternate names: Crested hawk, crested baza, Pacific cuckoo-falcon. Baza refers to the genus of bird to which this weirdo belongs.
Not a word or phrase, but an acronym for “The Highest Paid Person’s Opinion.” This blog post by Jeff Gothelf describes HiPPOs:
In every product meeting there is someone in the room whose job title and related salary put them in a position of influence. Their opinions are known as HIPPOs — the highest paid person’s opinion — and are often the deciding factor in what decisions and next steps a team takes.
The rest of the post talks about “Taming the HiPPO,” or basically assuaging their ego in order to get beyond their opinion and develop a plan for workable ideas.
I actually think about this phenomenon quite a bit, as people like Elon Musk are known to have “handlers” who exist to shield his precious ego and make him feel like a genius, while also protecting the people who actually develop and implement ideas that work.
I honestly think we humans are terrible at having too much power. Some studies indicate that as wealth increases, empathy and compassion decrease. I’ve also read enough stories of obscenely famous people who are surrounded only by yes-people who are invested in keeping their jobs and proximity intact. The problems set in when they don’t have truth-tellers in their entourages to remind them to stop sniffing their own farts.
3. Disgusting sex pest
In the wake of Scott Adams experiencing consequences for his shitty racist behavior, Iron Spike (C. Spike Trotman, founder of Chicago-based Iron Circus Comics) tweeted that the Dilbert creator will soon become as forgettable as Al Capp, described thusly:
4. Saxophone fart
This phrase is from the closed captioning of a Parks and Rec GIF. Chef’s kiss.
While previewing the debut episode on Maintenance Phase, Michael shares that a friend of his came up with the amazing title for his newest podcast, If Books Could Kill. He added that this is the same friend who said there should be a podcast about the history of fishing called “Codpast.”
I would 100% wear a t-shirt with a vintage drawing of a fish and CODPAST in bold type below it.
6. The superspreader events of American stupidity
This is how Michael Hobbes described nonfiction airport books in the inaugural episode of If Books Could Kill, wherein the cohosts tear the book Freakonomics a new one.
7. Seditious panda
I don’t know how I missed this, but I guess a guy wore a huge panda head mask while storming the Capitol on January 6th. And the FBI just arrested a suspect. You love to see it! I hope they admitted the panda head into evidence.
8. Pasta puffer
From the WTF Files, a puffer jacket with farfalle (bowtie pasta) is the new trendy jacket? Sorry, Internet, but no.
I’d much rather grab Gerald Stratford’s ‘fit.
Learn more about this affable “gardener into big veg” in this 2021 Eater interview.
That’s it for this week! Thanks for reading!
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