Jared, the Butcher of Widgets

jared, butcher of song

He’s back, and this time he’s in your Dashboard (on Tiger, that is). The infamous Jared, the Butcher of Song, is now available for Mac OS X 10.4 as a Dashboard Widget. From the release notes on the Freeverse blog:

Jared has long been an affront to the senses, an insult to the diatonic scale, an inappropriate “yo-mama” joke told over-loud at the elegant dinner party of internet culture, but never has Jared been as much of a waste of hard drive space as he is as a widget.

For full background on Jared, you’ll have to go to the Wayback Machine, or this old feature article from Wired. Briefly, though, Jared is a little round smiley face who lip-syncs to a wonderful, wonderful Guatemalan song, performed as though cats were being tortured in the vicinity. (Actually, his original biography stated, “Never has the mating of cats sounded so melodic as after one has listened to ‘El Carnicero de Canciones,’ the ‘Butcher of Songs,’ as Jared was known in Guatemala.”)

The Windows version of Jared appears to have gone the way of all flesh (the version I found on line doesn’t even run in Windows 95 compatibility mode under Windows XP), but if you download the Mac OS X version to a Windows machine, you should be able to unzip it, go into the directory, and play the song for yourself. Should you really wish to torture yourself, that is.

(Footnote: when I was working for AMS, I wanted to stress test our ability to embed arbitrary Windows files as documents in our procurement document management software, so I uploaded the WAV file of Jared’s song into our database. I wish I had thought to route the thing along for approval to my co-workers. I almost succeeded in embedding him as an Easter egg in the app, too, but cooler heads prevailed.)

Pops Flag Day concert: a correction

I thought the TFC performance at last night’s Pops concert went quite well, although it is quickly becoming clear that doing a lot of these concerts back to back on weeknights has the potential to take some of the magic from the experience—primarily by exhausting me. However, in the haze of the last few minutes of last night’s concert, I found out something: Saturday night’s audience wasn’t “roaring with approval” because the chorus stood to sing.

It was roaring with approval because an enormous American flag had just unfurled directly above us in front of the proscenium, ending some ten feet above our heads.

Heh. At least I wasn’t alone in my ignorance. The guy right in front of me found that out for the first time last night, and he’s been singing in the chorus for several years.