Telling You What's Good

Philosophy

The WBH Philosophy on Buying Music

It’s 2013. We have Spotify, Grooveshark, Pandora, and a host of piratey options that have been around for a while. Nobody, except me on occasion, it seems, buys CDs. It’s just stupidly easy to get music for free now, but at WBH we feel that if you REALLY like a band and their work, some appreciation should be shown, whether it’s spreading the good word, buying the album on iTunes (or elsewhere, or indeed a physical copy), or attending a concert (which puts VASTLY more money into the band’s hands than record sales). You’re not a bad person if you don’t. WBH doesn’t judge, and doesn’t consider it “theft.” If you’re of the internet generation, you often expect such things for free, and bands (and movie studios, etc) should expect that people will gain access to their product for nothing. Indeed, if it were not for file sharing, songs posted on Youtube, Grooveshark, and elsewhere, nobody would know about so much good music that’s out there. But if you really care about something, it’s worth supporting the creators.  I don’t buy many CDs, but I always will for my top tier bands, and I always try to see them in concert.

PS: hell with Lars Ulrich and the RIAA!

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Weathering Sandy – the WBH Hurricane Guide

Holy shit.

Hello East Coasties,

Enjoying the weather? Still got power? (Or are you reading this on your phone, you lovely devotees?)  So as you may have noticed, the mid-Atlantic and beyond is in the midst of a so-called “Frankenstorm,” a combination of Hurricane Sandy and some mad nor’easter, resulting in apocalyptic rain, winds, damage, and general mayhem, and it’s only getting worse as I write this.

Chill out! It’s the We Ball Harder Hurricane Guide!

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“Caffè lattes in the chaos”: Beirut Accurately Depicted in the FT

Leaving London for a moment, Today’s Financial Times has done something remarkable: actually published an accurate, pros-and-cons article that perfectly captures the frustrating yet addictive nature of Beirut.  Most major papers do nothing but extol its party/beach/restaurant/chic cafe scene.  Abigail Fielding-Smith’s article is all about the chaos, frustration, and anarchy of life in Beirut, but equal due paid to the entrancing small charms of living there:

“It is fashionable among Middle East aficionados to decry Beirut’s shallowness. But away from the manic hedonism of the nightspots, the pleasure Beirutis take in the small things in life is infectious. In the evenings, old ladies take fold-up chairs on to the seafront to gossip and smoke water-pipes, while young men slip in and out of the water beneath the railings. Beirut is, despite its problems, a great place to live. I hope it stays that way.”

Definitely worth a read, and something to keep in mind when you think everything around you is madness.


Why London is the Greatest City on Earth

I may live mostly in DC, frustratedly adore Beirut, and enjoy travelling round the world, but only one place is my true love: The Metropolis; Her Majesty’s Capital; London.  Having lived there twice and visited so often I’ve lost count of the times, London is truly where my spirit resides. When I arrive at Dulles, I groan; when I arrive at Heathrow, I think “I’m home.”

Given a little thing called the Olympics is going on there now, it’s a great time to tell you why London deserves every bit of attention it’s getting.

Well, for starters, PIMM’S IN A CAN – to be drunk exclusively on the street.

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Serious Heat

So over at Serious Eats, there’s a post about increasing your chile tolerance.  While I agree with the message (namely that some of the best cuisines in the world are pretty hot, and that it’s worth developing a tolerance so that you can enjoy them), I feel they left out a key component:  Start slow and build up to all out!  In the first few days, only add half a jalapeño or a couple drops of hot sauce, then after you’re comfortable with that, increase it steadily and gradually.  Within a few weeks you’ll be a fire-breather, undaunted by whatever the world’s kitchens can throw at you.  Good luck.


We Fail Harder: How NOT to Sell a Car

NOT what I’m in the market for.

Some of you that know me personally may know that I’ve been car shopping.  I’ve been seeking used (no, I will not use this idiotic “pre-owned” term), simply because let’s face it, I’m about maximizing value, and finding a well-taken care of car that’s a bit older but otherwise immaculate is a VASTLY better value than a new car.  I’ve been at it for several weeks, and 90% of the sellers out there FAIL HARD.  Here’s what not to do:

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The Discerning Drinker: What to look for in a bar

So, for those that have read my recent glowing writeup of Little Branch, as well as my comparison of Passenger and Gibson and my review of El Centro, I thought I should clarify what I look for in a drinking establishment that you too ought to consider.  Don’t spend money and waste time at crappy bars (or anything else, for that matter), use this handy guide.

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