Sunday, April 30, 2006

Gene Gene the Dancing Machine

What if Gene Hackman had starred in the original Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and Gene Wilder had starred in the original Poseidon Adventure? What if Gene Hackman had been one of the original "Producers" and Gene Wilder had been Lex Luthor?

It seems that every other these days is a sequel or a remake. How do they do it? I think people under 40 don't remember the originals. I've run into people that didn't realize there was an "original" Poseidon adventure, that didn't know that Mission: Impossible was a TV show. That the killer in the original "Friday the 13th" movie was Jason's Mom.

By the way, the old guy from tonight's "Cold Case" was the star of the original "Mission: Impossible" TV series.

And the show "Cold Case" should be called "People With Impossibly Good Memories Case." I can't remember conversations from last week, let alone 60 years ago...

If There's Time To Lean, There's Time To Clean

So according to the New York Daily News, President Bush spoke out against a Spanish version of the National Anthem that someone is producing. I'm not here to argue that we particularly need a Spanish version of The Star Spangly Banner. Maybe it's a good idea, maybe it's a bad idea. But doesn't the President have other things to worry about.
Like flag burning.
Terri Schiavo.
Natalee Holloway.
The War on Christmas.
Foie gras. The city of Chicago recently passed a ban on selling the delicious livers of cruelly force fed geese. Apparently liberals have idiotic time-wasting issues too.
Now, nobody likes dissecting idiotic minutiae better than me. (See pretty much every previous entry.) But W. should be talking about his favorite songs on his blog, or while sitting around having beers with his oil buddies, (in between dividing up gasoline profits) not while speaking publicly in his official capacity as our elected leader.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Rosie O'Donnell on "The View"

So, apparently, now that Katie Couric is taking over for Dan Rather, and Meredith Viera is taking over for Katie, Rosie O'Donnell will be taking over for Meredith on "The View." (Still no word on who'll be doing "Who Want's to Be a Millionaire. If it's even still on...).

I'm definitely looking forward to the huge slap fight between Rosie and Starr Jones.

Here's what I love about the TV show "Las Vegas:"

There are many areas of the fictional "Montecito" hotel where scenes of the TV show "Las Vegas" take place. The surveillance office, the casino, the "Mystique" restaurant. But my favorite is the topless swimming pool area called "Bella Petto." Tonight's episode involved a woman who saw Jesus' face in the waterfall. Or a saint. Someone, anyway, who told her how to bet. The Italian translation of "Bella Petto" is "Beautiful Breast." I think. I know only a little Italian.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Greatest Joy... the joy of duty.

...It's hard thinking of something new every day.


Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Maternal Stop Short Reflex

Here's how you used to be able to tell if someone was a mom: If she's driving, and she has to stop short, she'll put out her right hand to hold her child, by reflex, even if there's no one sitting in the front seat.

But now, the conventional wisdom is you don't but your kids in the front seat at all. We've got airbags. They'll pop your kid's head clean off. You put the kids in the back. In car seats. Facing backwards. If you put your kids in the front seat you're a terrible parent. You might as well let your kids watch TV, or eat sugar or play in the front yard. You're lucky I don't call Social Services.

So if the kids are in the back seat, do moms still have the reflex?

Where Was I?

I spent a few days in Austin, Texas.

First of all, they have a great airport. At least two different barbecue restaurants. Not chainey airport crap either, but outposts of good local places. And to get to your rental car? A shuttle bus? No! The rental lots are right outside the terminal! Where other airports would have parking. But who parks at the airport anymore? You can't go down to the gate without a boarding pass, and if you're picking someone up you just have them call on your cellphone. So the rental lot is right there! Genius!

The first day I got there, I had lunch with my friend T____ and some friends. One of her friends who ate with us, "S_______", is, among other things, one of the Texas Rollergirls, the local roller derby league. How cool is that.

Some of the other people I met: A classical flutist/interior designer; a prop master for (currently) a Lifetime movie shooting in Louisiana; an aide to a Texas state senator; belt-makers, hair-dressers, documentarians and many other very interesting people, who live in cool houses.

Monday night, T. and I went to see "Friday The 13th, Part III in 3D!" at the Alamo Drafthouse. The Alamo Drafthouse is a movie theater where they serve food and drinks. They had a band playing before the movie. So, already it's enough of an experience to merit a blog mention. But I go in ahead of T., who's out looking for a lost dog before the movie. And I'm looking for seats, and it's crowded, and I'm asking a woman if the seats next to her are taken, and they are but there's a couple at the end of the row. And the woman is wearing a Texas Rollergirls T-Shirt. So I ask "Are you one of the Texas Rollergirls?"
"Yes, we all are."
"Do you know S.?"
"Yeah, she'll be sitting right here."
So we ended up seeing one of the seminal horror movies (It's the one where Jason gets his hockey mask, plus, no other movie has ever had a better use of 3D? Every scene has a pitchfork coming out of the screen, or a machete, or a flying eyeball.) with the Rollergirls, drinking beer and eating melted chocolate cake with ice cream.

Blogger Template!

Hey! I'm trying out a new template, playing around with it...I guess if you've never been here before you wouldn't notice...

Here I am!

Hey! I've been out of town! But I'm back!

Friday, April 21, 2006

I'll show you young punks!

There's talk now of a new "Star Trek" movie (news story here). It's going to be produced by J.J. Abrams of "Alias," "Lost," and, let's not forget, "Felicity." They say it's going to be about Young Kirk and Young Spock. And there will be lots of talk about who's going to play them. Well the answer is obvious. No one can play Kirk but Shatner. Sure, he's, well, old. But we've got special effects now. And makeup. And maybe the young Kirk was a little heavier than he was in the Klingon-fighting years, before he went on a diet of space food. It's Shatner! He's won an Emmy! He could eat Michael Vartan for breakfast. You heard it here first...

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Hey Look!

The Wooster Collective is a site that has stories and pictures of street art; not just grafitti but some very cool stuff.

Also take a look at The Seven Deadly Sinners. If you go back in the archives you can find a couple of cool illustrations of the one-eyed cat.

Technology Question

Does anyone know of a software program I can use to convert my old Betamax tapes to Blu-ray disks?

link via digg

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A Great day for Soda

So, I went to my corner store today, and I thought that the liquid highlight of my day would be the new flavor of Dr. Pepper; "Berries and Cream". I thought that I would go home and write to the blog about how, back in college, we only had the one flavor of coke. And that was about the time they were trying to ruin that flavor. (Kids, ask your parents about the "New Coke" scare of the 80s). Now we've got Cherry Coke, and Vanilla Coke, Peach Fresca; more and more every day. Berries and Cream Dr. Pepper looked very promising. But I'm home now, sitting at my computer, and haven't even tried it yet.

Because the even bigger, more exciting product is the new "Coca-Cola Blãk", and, if you can't read that right it's "Blak" with a little tilde over the "a". Which would be very irritating but I'm very much digging the product. It's coffee soda! Yes! Coffee and soda mixed together. With, of course, a little high fructose corn syrup, phosphoric acid, potassium sorbate and potassium benzoate (to protect taste), and, naturally, some acesulfame potassium. It comes in a glass bottle, with an opaque plastic laminate, so you can't see what it looks like.

It's delicious and I love it!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Where's Spider-man when you need him?

The Roosevelt Island Tram, as seen in the first Spider-man movie, has been stuck with 72 people on the two cars for about five and a half hours. They are just now beginning to take people off, into a smaller, cagey car. They've pre-empted regular programming on Channel 7 here in New York to cover the "crisis." They've got a kid named "Dax" or "Zack" on the tram on a cell phone on the air now. He seems fairly upbeat.

They've talked about needing food, but if I was stuck on a tram, which I don't think has a bathroom, I don't think I'd want to eat anything...

You'd think they'd have some sort of plan for something like this that would take less than 5 hours.

The "King Kong" ride at Universal Studios is a simulated ride on the Tram; although for some reason the tram goes all over the city in the ride...

What about Boston Legal though? Will we ever get to see tonight's episode? Shatner!

Brightly lit naughty parts.

So, there's this show, NCIS, it's a crime show. So they've got a morgue, with dead bodies in it. Dead naked bodies. So how do they show the dead naked bodies without giant FCC fines? Bright, bright lights on the gentles. Entertainment technology marches on...

Magazine subscriptions

I just got a "Last chance for continuous service" notice for my magazine subscription that I have 2 more monthly issues left to recieve. Why does it take so long? We can write, photograph and design an issue in 2 days, send it to the printer on Monday night and have it on the newsstand on Wednesday morning, but it takes 2 months to send an address to have printed on the label? What's up with that?

The One True Religion

I've been around the world, and this is the one that does it for me

All Hail the Awsomeness!

No, really, anyone who thinks that Creation, (AKA "Intelligent Design") should be taught in schools is a traitor to our country. You are undermining science education, which will lead to our economic collapse. Seriously.


So I've not managed to even go a week without missing a day. I believe that if you're going to have a blog and expect people to look at it, you've got to put something down every day. Argh! It's a rule.

Here are my other rules:
Try not to state the obvious.
Try not to break the law, unless, of course, it's "civil disobedience" in which case go to jail and be happy about it.
There is no try, only do or do not.
Don't quote "Star Wars."
Never fight a land war in Europe.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Play the Hits!

I just went to the Museum of Modern Art. One of the large exhibition areas had a huge Edvard Munch exhibition. But they didn't have a copy of "The Scream." There are actually more than one copies of this painting, so even though one of them was stolen they should have been able to get one for the show.

I feel like I went to see "The Knack" and they didn't play "My Sharona."

In retrospect, maybe they had "The Scream" and I just didn't notice it...

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Blogger spell checking

As is relatively obvious, I use the popular "Blogger" service to post my blog. One of it's features is a spell check. Oddly enough, it didn't recognize the word "blog" when I spell checked my last entry. That wouldn't be surprising for the spell check in any other program, like Microsoft Word, since "blog" is a relatively new word. But you'd think that the people who write the software for the "Blogger" service on the "Blogspot" websites that create "Blogs" would have that in their spelling dictionary...

Comic Book Shopping

One of the things I enjoy doing in my spare time is reading the comic books...

I get most of my comics at a little store I like in Waltham, Massachusetts. Sadly, it's about a four-hour drive from where I live. They stash away most of the books I want, but occasionally, there's one I miss. Sometimes, I've been saving up all the issues of a 12 part story, and find that number seven, for instance, is missing. I spent today shopping for missing issues, and finally found the last one I needed.

"Friendly Neighborhood Spider-man." (Issue #3) Who would have thought the seventh or eighth separate Spidey series would be any good. Actually, I don't know yet; I've been waiting to get the complete series before reading it all in one sitting.

If I was lame enough to have a "Poll" on my blog, today's question would be, if you read the comic books, and visit the "comic book stores", do you prefer the weeks new issues mixed in with previous week's issues, or all the new releases separate?

Immigration Idol

A phrase we hear alot when people talk about immigration is "There are some jobs Americans just won't do." I could go on about how this is insulting to both Americans and immigrants, but, I'm scheduled to do more of a joke post.

So, even if we accept the premise that there are some jobs Americans won't do; it's also true that Americans will do anything to get on TV. So we just have to send video cameras out to every crappy job. Set up a couple of new cable networks, e.g. "The Housekeeping Channel" or "The Fruit-Picking Network." People would line up around the block for a prime-time slot...

More questions to come...

Friday, April 14, 2006

Hours of fun and profit

Every state has a website that you can find unclaimed property. Some of it may be yours.

Here is a website with links to all of them. I think I may have found about $50 for my brother-in-law...

(via The Advice Goddess, another blog I often read. It's crime busting fun.)

Thursday, April 13, 2006

What's Neal Doing?

Neal Adams, legendary groundbreaking comic book artist, has some interesting scientific theories...

Click here

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

What Makes A Great TV Show

There are two hallmarks of a great TV show. It's a paradox; they're exactly opposite characteristics.

The first is that a really great TV show should have exactly the same plot every episode. The prime example of this is Scooby-doo. Every episode: they show up at a haunted house, run around crazy mad for 14 minutes, Shaggy makes a sandwich, Scooby runs in four directions at once connected by his tail and Velma figures out that it was the caretaker with a movie projector, who would have gotten away with it except for you meddling kids! Current examples: Law & Order, CSI, Two and a Half Men

The second kind of great show is one where absolutely anything can happen. Currently the best example of this is "Las Vegas" with James Caan and supermodel Molly Sims. Just the casting shows you that they can do a show about pretty much anything. The most recent episode: Everyone goes to play paintball. Episodes can have romance, comedy, crime, or even time-travel (one episode was set in the 1960s). The other classic example of this is, of course, Baywatch. Romance, sharks, hidden treasure, Mitch's troublemaking cousin...anything could happen.

The Penn Jillette show

The tall guy from Penn & Teller does a radio show. Talks about atheism all the time.

The Penn Jillette radio show page.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

I'm back

Down for a serious upgrade. I'm much smarter now...more to come.