If you didn’t know, we here at Running Downhill are less of a blog and more of a daily lunch group. Running Downhill was conceived while possibly eating sandwiches in the courtyard of the Art Institute of Chicago (where none of us went, or go to school, but it’s a nice place to eat). Basically, we know that it is very important to have good (i.e. meaningful) conversations at lunch, since it provides a sometimes cool and often funny escape from the slums of university employment. We were eating some Thai food today and, after a lengthy discussion on the golden years of sports video games (I still think that 1995 was the best, representing the maximum awesomeness in the last of the minimalist sports video game era, a/k/a the three-button era) we figured we might help you out if you and your co-workers/friends/strangers are having a hard time coming up with some gnarly lunch discussions.
RUNNING DOWNHILL PRESENTS:
SUGGESTED LUNCH CONVERSATIONS
1- Compare/contrast tactics (with accompanying Venn Diagram) employed by Slobodan Milošević in the Yugoslav Wars w/r/t the West Coast Offense as used by Bill Walsh and the San Francisco 49ers during their 1981 march to the Super Bowl.
2- Discuss what might or might not have, if indeed anything, happened during “The Crusade Against Bolshevism” a/k/a “The Great Patriotic War” a/k/a “The Eastern Front” and compare it to the “supposed” release and subsequent “experience” of Halo 2 for the XBOX gaming console. In essence, which, if any is more real?
3- Discuss whether or not the country of Hungary actually exists, and if it does, if it exists solely in black and white, or color, or in the minds of ponytail wearing cinematographers.
4- Discuss the applicability, if any, of Keith Woolner’s VORP (Value Over Replacement Player), Baseball Prospectus’ WARP-3 (Wins Above Replacement Level), and Doug Drinen’s WPA (Win Probability Added, NOT including Leverage Index) modeling to predictive analysis of factory workers in a post-industrial developed nation with a GDP exceeding $15,000 per capita.
5- Compare/contrast your present dining experience and quality of conversation/food in relation to Barry Levinson’s Diner, Louis Malle’s My Dinner With Andre, Bob Odenkirk’s Melvin Goes to Dinner, Stanley Kramer’s Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, Michael Bay’s Armageddon, and, if possible, relate the textures of your current meal to the textures of light used by Sven Nykvist in Ingmar Bergman’s Through a Glass Darkly (a/k/a Såsom i en spegel).
6- Discuss the current threat level in America using the colors of the rainbow (ROY G. BIV), and suggest replacement candidates for Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. Mandatory discussion candidates include former Secretary of State Colin Powell (1 vile(s) of Anthrax held up in public), Marcus Camby, C-LAC (3.6 BPG, ’07/08), The 1976 Pittsburgh Steelers a/k/a “The Steel Curtain” (130 points allowed), Current San Francisco 49ers Head Coach and former Chicago Bears middle linebacker Mike Singletary (1,488 career tackles), a moat a/k/a trench (several castles defended), a Brinks Security System ($49 standard installation), and the Maginot Line (0 Germans defensed).
7- Define Freud’s “Death Drive,” and discuss its manifestation in colonization-era Indonesia, Napoleonic France, and post-war America, and its transcultural impact w/r/t NFL touchdown celebrations and Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Chad Johnson changing his name to Chad Ocho Cinco and his subsequent drop in touchdowns caught.
8- Discuss whether or not something in real life (a/k/a RL) can be a MEME, and if so, provide examples. If you are aware of all internet traditions, you are exempt and may choose another topic.
9- Analyze, au Francais, the work of David Foster Wallace, specifically its role in the development of the current artistic aesthetic, and its impact on important works that followed, including Arrested Development, the novels of Chuck Palanhiuk, Super Bowl XLI, Wes Anderson, the first five episodes of Mad Men, and other examples from class.
10- Examine the pros and cons of watching a movie on your fucking phone, and discuss if you think it is or isn’t possible to actually be watching a movie on your fucking phone or if you need to fucking get real.
11- Discuss what you did over the weekend, what you are doing on this particular day, and, if possible, talk about some cool stuff that might be happening in the upcoming weekend. Show your work.