Last Call: New Politics, pretzels, and the worst halftime show of all time

Photo: Yummy Pic/Getty Images
Photo: Yummy Pic/Getty Images

“Harlem” by New Politics

A certain day of the week has turned into “Tardy Tuesday” at our house, and I just won’t have it. There is a certain time we need to be out the door to get the kids to school on time; it’s been the exact same time for several years now, so why can’t we get it together? Last Friday, fanatically insistent that the kids would not receive their second tardy in a single week even as things were already looking pretty tardy, I put on “Harlem” by New Politics about five minutes before we had to head out the door. Sure, “smoke ’em if you got ’em” probably isn’t the best message for young kids, and it was a total Hail Mary, but it had the desired effect. People moved quicker, even a little cheerier; we got out the door on time, and there were even some smiles on some faces. Victoire! Any suggestions for more get-out-the-door songs? Already looking at Jon Spencer Blues Explosion’s “Bellbottoms” and Cat Stevens’ “Can’t Keep It In” to prevent another Tardy Tuesday next week. [Gwen Ihnat]



Photo: Lew Robertson/Getty Images
Photo: Lew Robertson/Getty Images

This weekend, I accomplished a culinary feat I wasn’t sure I could achieve: I made delicious soft pretzels. I’d had a bad experience attempting them years ago, but wanted to show up with something impressive at my friend’s Super Bowl party. I followed this Smitten Kitchen recipe to the letter and voila, gorgeous pretzels. I paired them with Sierra Nevada’s porter mustard, which had just the right level of spice and texture. [Kate Bernot] 

The worst halftime show of all time

Seems that there’s a lot of discussion about Justin Timberlake’s halftime show at the Super Bowl, mostly of the negative variety. Well, you’ve obviously never seen the 1987 Orange Bowl performance by magician Harry Blackstone, Jr. It’s regarded in magic circles as one of the worst live television disasters of all time—featuring a cavalcade of mishaps, malfunctions, blown illusions, and it’s all cringe-inducing and hilarious to watch. [Kevin Pang]



I’ve been trying to get better at breads, and recently made some bagels using malt syrup in the boil (hey, homebrew store!) I figure it’s worth trying the same with pretzels.

For waking people up, I recommend anything by Guitar Wolf. I’m partial to the following, mostly because of the lyric that roughly translates as “in my ass pocket I’ve got a rock ‘n’ roll license.”

I have zero opinions on halftime shows.