Mike Jones: Penn & Teller’s best kept secret

From the Movable Buffet:

For years I have been writing the praises of Mike Jones, one of the greatest jazz piano players alive. I have written a cover story on him for Las Vegas Weekly (where I am staff) and called your attention to his work on this blog.

Jones has a handful of discs on the jazz label Chiaroscuro. But if you want just one tiny reason why Penn & Teller offer the best show in Vegas, Mike Jones springs to mind. The duo easily could opt not have an opening act, or they could play taped music while the audience is seated. Most shows do that. Instead, being music fans, they have hired one of the most talented players around to give audience members an extraordinary 60 minutes of entertainment as they take their seats and await the start of the Penn & Teller show. Probably, very few members of the audience are aware that a world-class talent is performing as they run for drinks or sign an envelope (part of the show).

I’ve seen Penn & Teller’s Vegas show and Mike Jones is really great but what the article doesn’t mention is that Penn plays stand up bass with Jones while people go to their seats. Most people don’t realize that one half of the headline act is also quietly performing the opening act off to the side.

Sex Offender Wins $500K in Lottery Run By Rape Support Group

Doh!

When a non-profit that helps rape victims decided to hold a lottery in Alaska, there’s no way that they could have known that the $500,000 jackpot would go to a registered sex offender.

But that’s just what happened when they pulled the winning ticket Friday night in the Standing Together Against Rape raffle.

KTUU-TV says Alec Ahsoak, the 53-year-old winner, was convicted three times of sexually abusing minors.

(via Slog)

More Mail

I spent part of my snowy weekend going through my emails so that you Cynics could enjoy some of the more interesting e-mails that I’ve received over the past year or so. These are by no means a complete glance of the emails I get critiquing the blog but just the more interesting ones. I decided to go with the “You’ve lost a reader!” theme for the majority of them with a few others sprinkled in for flavor.

Bon Appétit.

From DourSilk:

Your blog sucks. All you do is post links from other legitmate sites and you expect us to read them? Fuck that. I’m sick of reading your godless links to Rihcard Dawkins. Did you know that he’s a communist? Oh you won’t post that about him though. BYE!

From TedC:

Dear Chris:
I’ve been reading your blog for a while now but I can do without all the links to videos. I prefer to read posts instead of watching them. Do you think you could post more “reading” links then “watching” links?

From Sherry May:

To Mr Cynic
How dare you constantly attack our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ yet you never attack Allah or that god of the Jews! You liberals won’t be happy until this country becomes one nation under Mohammad. Go to hell! I hope you find Jesus because judgement is coming.

From GreenNight5:

What’s up with all these anti-Israeli articles you’ve been posting lately. You’re sounding like an anti-Semite and I’m afraid I don’t visit these kind of sites. So unless you start posting about the terrorists kidnapping Israelis and firing rockets into Israel, I will no longer visit your blog.

From Humblebee:

Chris,
I’ve been reading your blog for some time now and you probably won’t care about this but I’m kind of sick of the Vegas posts. You seem like a smart guy so I don’t understand why you would post about that godawful city all the time. Smarten up buddy. Nobody cares about Vegas. This blog is starting to go downhill fast. It’s a shame too because this was once my favorite blog ever and now it doesn’t even feel like I want to come anymore.

From Rob B:

WE GET IT! YOU ARE AN ATHEIST! DO I HAVE TO READ ABOUT ATHEISM EVERY DAY I GO TO YOUR SITE? STOP POSTING ABOUT RELIGION! YOUR FREQUENT ATHEISM POSTS MAKES YOU JUST AS BAD AS THAT CHURCH THAT PICKETS THE SOLDIERS FUNERALS. NOBODY CARES!

From Beagle:

Dear Mr. Cynic

You’re blog used to be really good but now it’s just about politics. I just want you to know that you have ruined your blog and I will no longer read it. You may think that it’s your blog but you have readers and now it is their blog. Maybe you can put a vote up to see if your readers want to hear nothing but Obama love 24/7. My guess is that their sick of it also. Just my two cents. I may come back to this site if you come to your senses.

From Jennifer T:

i’m just a christian who was looking up stuff about our soon to be new pres. i believe he’s the anti christ for many of the same reasons you do. plus the stock market crashing so close, and his rise of power, and the dollar becoming almost a level thing.

but mostly because the first time i watched him speak on tv i got a chill up my spine. something i never had before and my only thought was the ac. i didnt think of that about anyone before in my life. im30 and have heard about the ac all my life. this isnt something i went looking for. not in bush or clinton or anyone. i feel he has a hypnotizing glare and his silver tongue sweet tlaking is making people go nuts. the time is appon us and im scared. so im reaching out to any believers.

From Robert:

Dear Asshole,

Why do you only attack Christians and Christianity. Why not attack Jews for their believes? Because your a coward that’s why! It takes a real man to stand up against Jews and Muslims but any asswipe can talk bad about Christians. I hope you find that Jesus loves and cares for you before you die and you end up in the lake of fire for eternity. Fuck off.

From Todd A:

Chris,
Don’t take this the wrong way because I do love your site but don’t you think you’ve posted enough Ingersoll at this point? He’s dead. Give it up. Your site would be much better if it didn’t have a daily reminder from some dead dude. Also, it seems that lately all you do is post stuff about politics. I’d hate to give up a good blog because the author has decided to be selfish and just post things that he finds interesting. There’s a lot of readers who come here for more than that. THanks for listening.

From Krazy4Jesus:

Hello Mr. Cynic,

I know you don’t believe in Jesus but I think I can change your mind. I also didn’t feel the Lord in me until one day I was driving home and had a flat tire. A man stopped and helped me and I was stricken by his kindness. It felt like the parable of the good Samaritin. Then I got home and realized that I had a wonderful family and I knew that it was god telling me that I needed to believe more in him. I realized that he had truly blessed me. And all this started from a flat tire! Miracles can happen. Please, listen for Jesus with an open heart.

Until you find him I fear I will no longer to be able to read your blog since my pastor says it is a sin to talk or read things from unbelievers. But I pray that one day you will be truly blessed and I can read your wonderful site again.

Jesus loves you even if you don’t love him.

From Kiera (Who was responding to my posting an earlier email from her where she stated that she was done reading me for good):

Geez, buddy…

I decided to give it another shot so I wouldn’t seem fickle sending you that PRIVATE email.

Only to be shot down in front of everyone on the blog.

I think I really am done this time.