First Trailer For Andrew Dominik’s “Killing Them Softly” Released

Andrew Dominik’s Killing Them Softly has finally released its first trailer. The film, which garnered some rave reviews since it premiered at the Cannes Film Festival a few months ago, stars Brad Pitt as the main protagonist Jackie Cogan, an enforcer who arrives in Boston to investigate a heist of a mob-protected poker game.

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Based on George V. Higgins 1974 novel Cogan’s Trade, the film has been updated to modern times and according to Indiewire’s blog, The Playlist, “softly” begins with an excerpt from Barack Obama’s 2008 Democratic Convention speech. Pitt even addressed whether or not Killing Them Softly should be viewed as critical of the Obama administration following its debut at Cannes, saying ”I was there that night in Chicago when Obama won, it was an amazing night, people out in the street, connected.” He then added that the use of Obama’s famous speech was not done “as a cynical look back at the statement of failure but as a real expression of hope.”

The film arrives in theaters on October 19th. You can watch the trailer below:

The Hot Dog Nation

According to the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council (no, I didn’t know there was one of those either), consumers spent more than $1.7 billion dollars on hot dogs in U.S. supermarkets in 2011. Altogether, Americans consume more than 20 billion hot dogs in a year. Say what you will, make your little jokes about unknown ingredients, but in this country there are a lot of people eating a lot of hot dogs every day.

When and Where

While there isn’t any hard and fast rule about the right time to eat a good hot dog, there is definitely a peak season. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Americans will put away 7 billion hot dogs. If you do some slightly frightening math on that, it works out to about 818 hot dogs consumed every second during that period. In the middle of all that, July has become National Hot Dog Month because this is when 10% of all hot dog sales actually occur.

Hot dogs are, of course, a great option almost anywhere, but nearly 20 million hot dogs will be eaten at baseball parks every year. Whether it’s tradition, or just a willingness of the ballparks to make a very unique hot dog, this just seems to be the right place to sit back and enjoy the local specialty.

History of the Hot Dog

Sausages, frankfurters, and wieners have been around for ages, but the hot dog itself is a comparatively recent development (okay, it’s been a hundred years or so, but sausages have been around for thousands, so this counts as recent). The biggest difference came with the inclusion of the bun. While there is some historical debate, but it most likely had something to do with a sausage vendor looking for a cost effective way to let his customers handle the food without getting burned.

The name, however, came from a cartoonist in 1901. He was at a baseball game at the Polo Grounds in New York, where the vendors were selling hot dachshund sausages. The cartoonist could hear what the vendors were yelling, but wasn’t sure how to actually spell dachshund, so he just called them hot dogs, and the name stuck.


It’s unlikely you’re ever going to be chastised for using the wrong fork at a backyard BBQ, but there are a few things that you should keep in mind when serving up this year’s dogs. First, always dress the dog, not the bun. Ketchup, mustard, relish, and everything else is there to complement the dog, not a piece of bread.

Second, always have a napkin handy. That little drop of mustard in the corner of your mouth isn’t going to impress anyone. Neither is wiping it on your sleeve. And finally, the proper side dish is a handful of chips, not French fries.

If you're into wieners, listen in on Dan Pashman and Mark Garrison in The Sporkful's podcast on hot dogs.

Why Everybody’s Bean Tweeting About The Olympic Opening Ceremony

Rowan Atkinson’s memorable performance in Last Friday’s opening ceremony of the London Olympics 2012 has caused a huge spike in the number of mentions on Twitter, so much that he became the event’s most-tweeted topic at that time.

Photo courtesy of: Getty

Along with the the Queen’s helicopter jump with James Bond and the duel between Voldemort and Mary Poppins, Rowan Atkinson’s Mr. Bean single-note keyboard act during the homage to the Olympians of “Chariots of Fire” wowed audiences around the world -- and sent them into peals of laughter.

Watch Bean's hilarious antics here:

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