Friday, November 28, 2008

I Hate You, Spiderman

I am watching Iron Man as I write this, and every minute that passes reinforces my belief that Spiderman is the biggest Shitball Joke of a Series to wipe its dirty ass on the 21 century's pop culture diaspora. My feelings about Spiderman ruining everything are made more solid by the sight of the Marvel opening sequence (the shutterclick Marvel comics) to every Marvel associated movie. Because I first associate it with the most boring, bullshit, horseshit, dogshit movies to annoy me in the last 10 years. I. Hate. you. Spiderman.

Iron Man makes me shiver with happy. HAPPY. It is bonafide Hot Shit. Omigod! Robert Downey Jr. is a wonder. It is hard to feel anything but joy and pride for him, considering the circus show his life has been for years. He is a real actor, the genuine article, so it is nice to see him doing his thing, living up to his potential, and basically kicking ass and taking names for all superheros. Finally!

What stupefies is the persistence of such heelsmut as Spiderman. Can we not put a stop to the bulbous blue eyes and general stupid face that is Tobey McGuire? Can it be that a Spiderman 4 is currently in the works? How could anything ever redeem the idiocy of Spiderman 3? And the unforgivable underachievement of the first two Spiderman films? VOMIT.

Maybe Iron Man can rocket in and incinerate his ass. I can dream.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


No one likes a crab, except for a really tasty one, so instead of listing things I hate (which seems to be an affliction lately), I am going to list things I love…more to the point, things for which I am Thankful…

My New Nintendo DS. Ain’t she a beaut? She’s got no miles on her, being charged for the first time as I write this. And she’s girly pink, to boot. She’s mine all mine.

Word Twist on Facebook. Despite the fact that I’ve played many of the letter variations some 100 times and still can’t manage to remember every word. Why do I refuse to learn? Do I need Sylvan Learning Center?

This Cat. He’s the one creature on this earth that I don’t mind watching while he eats. In fact, his weird face makes it a hilarious delight, as evidenced here:

Battlestar Galactica, Lost, The Amazing Race.

Is it sinful to be thankful for television? Baah! The first two are married to a narrative. Things happen; shocking, riveting, breathless surges of story…and there are moments of weakness, where one wonders why, why waste time on this boring ass aside, but each show has managed to right itself and keep on chugging. Battlestar’s season 3 finale was nothing short of galvanizing (imagine me yelling “Oh My God” repeatedly at the t.v.) and Lost continues to grow in an ever weirder and wilder direction. I have hope that both shows will draw to a satisfying close.

My Favorite Restaurant, Shaw’s Crab House and Oyster Bar, in downtown Chicago. King crab legs, lots of drinks, and a nice slice of key lime pie to top it off. The environment is classy but laid back, and they seem to not mind the sight of a lady elbow deep in butter, lemon juice, and crab carnage, smacking and chomping and growling when hands get too close to her kill. Or so I hear.

My Mommy, Mummy, Mum, Mumsy (and long ago also known as Mee Maw)

She will be here on the 20th!

My Shi-Shi, a.k.a. my sister (and to me, always, Lieslette)

Ain’t she purty?

No, really, she is. See?

The Girls (everyone together now: Awwwwwwwwwwwwww)

The Japanese Obsession with Owls. There are an amazing number of owl torture videos on YouTube. It’s in the same arena as holding up a mirror to a beta fish to see it freak out and flash its little gills, except the owls are way cooler. You’ve got your general owl harassment tutorial, the live cajoling of owls, and finally there’s the just plain weird.

I can count on one hand the number of times that something I saw on television or in a movie made me gut laugh for a long duration. One such case is the Steve Carell part of Bruce Almighty, for instance, but I have long searched for one of my favorites: The owl bit on "Late Night with David Letterman." Its super short, I can’t remember the context, but it was some kind of joke during which they played a video of a row of owls wolfing down whole mice to the earnest, screechy singing of “Tomorrow” from Annie. This is my favorite owl bit, even in light of all of the fabulous owl-related videos out there. Unfortunately, hunting down a clip from a 1992 (or so) airing of the Late Night show has proven to be most fruitless. If you find it, bring it to me.

Netflix. I could browse for hours, I suppose, because in a world where there’s such a thing as Horror Sci-Fi and Deadly Disasters…well, I guess I am all over that. What a lovely queue I have, with the likes of Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Nightmare on Elm Street 3, The Running Man, Starman, Near Dark, Two Can Play That Game, Junebug and about 70 more all co-exist in one, disorganized-schizophrenic list.

Fake Monsters.

Because they make us forget about the real monsters. Of course everyone is thinking about Mumbai and what’s happening over there. And the labeling of any terrorist will surely be met with a scolding based on idealized rationalization—after all, just about every race and society has partaken of the evildoers pie if you look at history as one set of people repressing and killing another—but of course it is easy enough to have an open mind when it isn’t happening to you. Fear is a tricky thing. I have had the unfortunate opportunity to experience very personal fear, where the threat of bodily harm was a real and possible thing, and I can tell you that sympathizing for the person threatening you is not on the list. Why then do we seek out and delight in movies where bad things happen to good (or, at least, regular) people? And why do we sometimes quietly cheer for the bad guys? It’s pure monkeyscience, I tell you, and nothing more. It’s why I’m putting 2001: A Space Odyssey in my queue.

Finally, of course. I am thankful for my friends. Thanks for keeping me up when I am down, reminding me of my self-worth when I am in doubt, and making me laugh my ass off on a regular basis. This song is for yooouuuuu.

Also, this song.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Slow Clap

For Yasmin. By the way, the one I mentioned (Lucas) is 4th, I think? The jocks in the letter jackets.

Girl, I'm doing this right now...just for you. And your rocking pureed pea dip.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Dance of the Happypants

Click Here to see the theater trailer for J.J. Abrams new Star Trek movie.

Remember that episode of South Park when Cartman froze himself on a mountainside because he couldn't stand to wait 3 more weeks for the Nintendo Wii to come out? This doesn't come out until May 8.

When you find me gobbling and spinning in a corner, at least you'll know why. This time.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Eddie, Are You OK?

So, two weeks ago I noticed several different people walking the streets of (or riding the rails of) big, bad NYC dressed as extras of “Smooth Criminal.” Of course I chuckled to myself because, hey, that’s crazy, but also it is so typical of CrazyTown on Any Given Day.

I wanted to blog about it, but of course stopped short because, well, we can’t really talk about him anymore, can we? No one can think of Michael Jackson without having to stop and wonder, Did He or Didn’t He? I can’t say what the percentages are…many, many people will never believe that he’s capable of the crimes he’s been accused of, but listen to the weird ooo-ing, oohhh-ing, and general weirdness about halfway through this song and you might at least think he’s got a general…problem.

For the record, I think he did it. Or at least was weird enough in the presence of children to be damaging to their psyches. Because this guy is seriously messed up, irregardless of the “truth.” Look at him in the Jackson 5 and look at him now. Have we all not asked ourselves What the Fuck at one time or another upon considering his dreadful transformation?

And the horrible truth of it is this: Do we allow ourselves to love him for what he was or do we condemn him and everything he’s done because of what we believe he’s done to children? Remember that he’d been famous—and an established talent, without argument—for many years before things started to get decidedly weird and, eventually, horrible. The fact is that most people would rather never believe Michael Jackson was capable of the things he’s been accused of.

I asked my co-workers once: Is it OK to have Michael Jackson on your Ipod? Because I felt that it wasn’t, honestly, and had removed almost everything from my archives. The younger peeps had an interesting point of view: No; if you like it, leave it. Because there’s a difference between the Person and the Product. They could separate the man from the music, which was incredible to me.

As time has gone by since that conversation, I have to say that I’ve been able to separate the two to some degree, too. In fact, to be honest, I just bought “Man in the Mirror” on ITunes. Why? Because I love that song. Should I apologize for it? Yes? No? How about, I just don’t fucking know anymore? That’s the most honest answer I can give. Because the part of me that loves that song remembers it from the time before “the bad time,” when all the dark moments came tumbling in and sullied everything, making all those sweet, twee memories sour and smelly. The truth is, I remember that song first in the context of my 16-year-old self, seeing the video for the first time and crying my stupid eyes out because it was touching. And that was it. Maybe I have the right to that memory, that context, and that song ultimately.

What do you think?

I've Been Searching High

Question: Why did they take away the Grammy? I mean, the songs were still sung, right? So they had this facade band of models, how did that negate the existence of the songs or non-cute band? I didn't get it then. I don't get it now.

Not interested in excuses for "how we once interpreted talent" -- really, why didn't those two homely Germans just take the Grammy? Or...heyyyy. Wait, does this mean that Grammy's have been based on looks all along? Because that's the only thing that makes sense.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Let’s Thunderdome, Bitch!

It’s been on my mind lately. Why? Because this movie endures in all the best ways. For instance, in conversation, “in the before time” and “in the long, long ago” comes up a lot, especially at work. And it always means when times were better. And what better comparison than Mad Max 3: Beyond Thunderdome’s grim Bartertown to modern, vaguely annoying, sometimes disappointing, hardly ever mortally dangerous white-collar work life. They are practically the same.

A favorite recent morsel of delight happened on a recent episode of Chuck. The employees of the Buy More (aka, Best Buy) attempt to determine the new Assistant Manager by setting up a Thunderdome ring in the back room of the store. I believe that from this single airing, the suggestion to settle the assignment of tasks via Thunderdome is happening more frequently. Due to the growing lack of office space in our building, I overheard someone (wishfully) suggest determining Who gets What via Thunderdome. I say bring it.

The resurgence has spurred me to seek out my own Mad Max favorites. And for me, “One of the Living” is the best song on the soundtrack, better than “We Don’t Need Another Hero,” because it has a grungier, more rock-bound tone to it. By the way, see that shiny saxophonist? His name is Tim Capello. I had the honor of shrieking Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiim at him outside the loading entrance at the Kansas Coliseum one fine night in 1985.

I’m not much into live performances but the best of the few I’ve seen was Tina Turner, by miles and miles. It was the Private Dancer Tour, of course, and I attended with my wonderful, heathen friends from 8th grade. My friend Alma, also known as La Chola, was this shy, soft spoken girl known for being a good student and friend. She was also known for street fighting on the weekends and coming to school with an impressive collection of cuts and scratches on her face Monday mornings.

While we had so-so seats, being horrendous 13-year olds had its advantages (that, and no parental guidance, woo-hooooo). Alma and Mary dragged me as close to the front as we could get, right on the edge of the hysterical crush of the front, about 8 rows from the stage. There were chairs, if you can believe it, and we ended up standing across three chairs while their actual occupants stood on the very same chairs behind us. What can I say? We were bastards. The guys didn’t seem too mad, more resigned, but it was still an obnoxious thing to do, I know. Irregardless, we got to see everything up close, including the shiny saxophonist, and, of course, Tina in all her glory. Besides the known exceptional qualities she’s possessed all these years—the gams, the moves, the pipes, the talent—she has this otherworldly quality about her. Not just anyone can be “made” into Tina Turner, believe it. The woman was tireless and beyond fantastic.


Is she not incredible, I ask you?

Oh, and is it just me, or does anyone else the resemblance?

Friday, November 07, 2008

The Week in Review

Most Awesome of Awesomeness First

I watched the debates and knew that Obama would win. I know it is a Foole Ignormonous who puts forth such confident suggestions, but I did. I watched both candidates and applied my hiring skills to the task: If you think about it, which one would you have hired? Put aside the obvious reasons you’d hire the guy – we were all wondering about those wackadoodle undecideds, weren’t we? And if they based their decisions on the foolproof leanings of “the gut,” they would all have gone to Obama, without pause, without question. He was calm, direct, guileless (we are not your friends, John, and you are not our Quaker pastor), largely unflappable, and consistent. In a word, trustworthy. As opposed to crazy-eyed, pacing, cyclically appeasing, my friends, and thoroughly creepy. No contest.

The real question is, When Will I Stop Crying? Clearly, I am already quite tenderhearted—first by nature, second because hey, I am still getting over the break up, sue me—but the sight of the celebrants, the reminder of the historical relevance, sometimes just his face sends me straight to weepy weepersville. I was glad to know that I was not the only one bawling when they first announced that he was, in fact, the President elect. It means something different to everyone, I think, even me. Let’s remember:

1. He’s African American – this has been covered in great detail, but I keep tripping across some new thing to wonder over. It’s almost beyond comprehension.
2. He’s half white/half black – and, even more incendiary, by a black man and white woman. There was a time when this was wholly taboo.
3. Absentee daddy – And, yes, there was a time when this was a mark of shame, too. I know because I lived it. People cannot help but feel So Very Sorry for You.
4. His name is Barack Hussein Obama. There was a time…five minutes ago…when that would have mattered. I suppose it matters to some—maybe it always will—but enough people know that idiotic, fear-mongering rhetoric is the hog feed of Ignorant Fooles. And not the majority, not this time. Thank God.

On the Flip Side

Let’s just say it now: Marriage blows balls, therefore everyone should all suffer equally. Give gays the right to marry and stop guarding an already corrupted symbol of sanctity and virtue. I am a bad advocate, by the way, considering my feelings about marriage. When it works, it’s because of the couple, not the institution, people. Maybe the authority of that institution buoyed the relationship, yes, but life-couples owe it to themselves more than anything. Some of us are just not the marrying kind. Which is why it annoys me to no end that I can marry Bart, Steve, Jack, Bubby, Wilhelm, Garth, Kenny, Buck, and Albert in Vegas, on crack, wearing nothing but an inner tube and grass skirt, while sober, serious, and committed folks who really want to say it because they mean it are not allowed, by law, to say I Do. At least where any state will recognize it. How does this make any kind of sense?

“Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha”

Upon speaking with someone at work today, I realized how often I remind myself of George McFly. What is this compulsion to laugh in order to make others laugh, like I’m a walking, talking laugh track? I should get myself a nice shock collar and clear that shit up right quick, ay?

General Apology

Sorry for interrupting you all the time. I know I talk over you—and everyone—daily. I try to remember to stop, but what I have to say is more important.

Song in My Head All Week

The Grand Prize Winner also belongs on the list of Worst Songs Ever: “Shake You Down”. I sincerely will never get over the “eeny meeny miney mo” part. Good God.

Things That Are Currently Awesome

I love this cat. His owner is hilarious. The FourFour recaps of America’s Next Top Model are better than the shows themselves. And this is what Winston went as for Halloween:

His life partner, Rudy, went as Elliott. I love that pissed off cat face:

Below, note the cute cat, yes, but what’s really awesome is the fact that I am breaking down and getting a DS. I’ve lived without it for 3 months, which is long enough in my book. Maybe it will help to break me of my Word Twist addiction.

Thanks, McBucketpants, yet again, for more awesomeness. This comical mind is something to be savored. The Napoleon bits slay me.