Wednesday, January 31, 2007

We Smoke as We Flip the Bird

This is hilarious. As a promotion for Aqua Teen Hunger Force - a great cartoon on Adult Swim - lighted boards had been put up around major cities in the US, and for some reason in Boston, they were thought to be bombs and they ended up closing several bridges and part of the Charles River. As Ignignokt would say, "We do whatever we want whenever we want, at all times."
But seriously, this fear of terrorism is out of control. Curse you, Bush Administration!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Weekend

Over the weekend we went to Indiana to a baby shower I hosted with a friend for my sister and her husband. We hooked up a web cam, since they couldn't travel to the party, and it was really fun. It was like, there was this big party, and my sister was in this one corner of the room - and everyone virtually mingled. Web camming is so fun! I'm so excited that we're going to be able to talk face to face (as it were) from now on! Maybe flying cars are next. (When I was a kid, I thought The Future would be all about video phones and flying cars.)

In other news, M. and I are going through the excruciating process of buying our first (and last?) home! The size of our future mortgage sure puts my student loans in perspective. Here's a short list of things I won't miss about apartments:

  • Our insane landlord who feigns Alzheimer's when we remind him again and again what needs fixin', and who, when I called him on our move in day to inform him that A. the front door had come off in my hand and B. there was no seat on the toilet, told me to never call him about "little things."
  • That persistent HAMMERING in the basement. WILL YOU BE QUIET!?!?
  • Doing laundry in a creepy basement with an untended sewer problem (see List Item #1) - exiting building in snow/rain/freezing cold, reentering (poopy) basement, discovering neighbor has used all my fabric softener...
  • White walls. I am SO SICK of white apartment walls.

But, perhaps I am counting my chickens before they hatch...

Thursday, January 25, 2007

So Amusing!

A few amusing online divertissements for your diversion:


Handsome Donkey
- well made, hilarious video shorts. My favorites: Le Montage and Photograph.


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

28%? That much?

I've been complaining about how there's never anything good on television, but lately I've been thinking to myself, (Self) When HAS there been a glut of fantastic shows on tv? When, exactly, was this golden age of television? And, naturally, I came to the conclusion that there actually are a ton of terrific shows on right now, but there's just a ridiculously disproportionate number of absolutely abysmal shows on too. Last night, for example, I had the choice of watching Veronica Mars, or a president with a 28% approval rate (who are these people, anyway?) give the State of the Union. I watched GW lie and point fingers and predict doom for 6 years now, so last night I was ready for some of that good tv I'm interested in. Just imagine, instead of watching Logan come to the realisation that getting a bj from a skanky ho in the parking lot just doesn't compare to the emotional connection he had with Veronica, I could have been suffering through GW's complicated, worthless plan to provide health care to only 5 million of the 47 million Americans that don't have any HEALTH CARE.

Is Hillary's invitation to "chat" better or worse than Fear Factor, Bad Girls, and American Idol? I'd say it was about on par with the originality and spontaneity of this. I don't get it - I know H. Clinton is a strong woman with liberal views, but she's so worried about projecting an image and matching her goddamn pink sweater and pearls for the State of the Union and carefully crafting an answer to "What is your favorite movie?" when she (like all Dems) needs to get the damn lead out. I'm telling you, last night should have been a riot! They should have booed Bush off the stage and thrown tomatoes at him for what he's done to this country.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Blogging for Choice

Yesterday was Blog for Choice day - I've been catching up on some of the writings from various feminist sites. I think my friend D. said it best, "I am for Choice because I believe women are human beings. As such, they deserve to have the ability to make their own decisions." It steams me that women's rights aren't protected in this country. I myself have been given the run-around just trying to pick up my birth control at the pharmacy (not to mention the times in my life I could barely afford it because it wasn't covered by my insurance). Attempts to over-rule Roe v. Wade are just indicative of this country's (and an unfortunate number of its populace's) refusal to see women as full human beings.

Apparently Bush declared yesterday "National Sanctity of Human Life Day" and has pulled that shit every Jan. 22nd since he's been in office. This former soldier has put together a photo essay with text from the White House's message to show just how much this administration has respected the sanctity of human life. Beware the faint of heart, the content is graphic.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

You know we're just struttin' for fun

Late last week, I became peripherally aware of several football games, the importance of which was impressed upon me by my brother-in-law's blog and this crazy lady at the Post Office.

M. and I were in a store while the Bears were playing today, and I said, "Who's winning?" And this guy says, "The Bears are!" and I say, "Did the Colts play yet?" and he says, "No, this afternoon. You a Colt's fan?" I wasn't quite clear on the correct answer to that question so I said, "We're from Indiana." This was taken as a "yes." We were smiled at, nodded at. The cashier said, "I'm a Colts fan." Ditto for the guy. Also for the woman who's always standing next to the cashier of this place. "I guess it would be cool," I say, "If the Colts and the Bears go to the Superbowl." Everyone agreed. There seems to be a lot of interest in keeping the Superbowl Midwestern in these parts.

And so it shall be. We went home and watched the last 10 minutes or so of the Bears game - it was a really miserable day today in Chicago and I felt bad for all those guys running around in the snow, so close to the lake. M. said, "Do you know these guys..." and I said, "Don't to tell me about the economics of football, I just watched Jerry McGuire this week. They have a shelf-life of four years!" We watched most of the Colts game. We usually have a Superbowl party every year (although we usually need someone to tell us what day it is and when it starts) and our friends come over and we eat cheese and meat until we're sick and no one watches the game. Wow, I can't believe I've blogged about sports twice in one month!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Must See TV

Tonight was the much anticipated musical episode of Scrubs. Would it, I wondered, be as good as the Buffy musical episode? Well, no. In traditional musicals, people just randomly burst into song, and it's the rare instance where people sing for a reason. In the Buffy musical, which was, as everyone knows, the single greatest television event in history, everyone sings because this evil demon has possessed the townspeople, and eventually, they sing and dance themselves to death! And, it's really awesome because not only are the songs really terrific and funny, but they also moved the plot of the entire series along.

The reason there's singing on Scrubs is because this woman has a gigantic aneurysm in her brain and her reality's a bit distorted. Like on Buffy, the songs allowed for some character exploration, as in a tango number between Turk and Carla where she complains about how he doesn't know her middle name and that she's Dominican, not Puerto Rican. But the show wasn't really very musical, despite being written by two composers from Avenue Q, and came off like a high school production (I'm not sure that wasn't the intention, actually.) The only person who seemed to have any real vocal talent was Aneurysm Woman (Stephanie D'Abruzzo, also from Avenue Q), and Sam Lloyd (Ted), who occasionally sings as part of a barbershop quartet.

As most television is getting worse and worse, I applaud shows like Scrubs and My Name is Earl for being some of the few scripted shows worth watching. I'm only mildly disappointed, because the truth is Scrubs has always highlighted musical talent, and they've introduced me to more than one artist that I've really loved. Maybe in the future they should leave the singing to the experts, though.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Peace

...I have the personal faith that mankind will somehow rise up to the occasion and give new directions to an age drifting rapidly to its doom. In spite of the tensions and uncertainties of this period something profoundly meaningful is taking place. Old systems of exploitation and oppression are passing away, and out of the womb of a frail world new systems of justice and equality are being born. Doors of opportunity are gradually being opened to those at the bottom of society. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are developing a new sense of "some-bodiness" and carving a tunnel of hope through the dark mountain of despair. "The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light." Here and there an individual or group dares to love, and rises to the majestic heights of moral maturity. So in a real sense this is a great time to be alive. Therefore, I am not yet discouraged about the future.

From Dr. Martin Luther King's 1964 lecture in the Auditorium of the University of Oslo where he received the Nobel Peace Prize.

Lady in the Water

Last night we watched M. Night Shyamalan's Lady in the Water. I hated it, but M. liked it. I found it self-congratulatory and I think the movie takes itself way to seriously, even for a self-proclaimed "fairy tale." I ask you, does any greater nepotist than M. Night exist? Every time there was a close-up of some non-actor staring dumbly, I thought, "Oh, great, that must be his cousin." Also, the dude has got to stop casting himself.

How about this cluttered piece of dialogue? "A boy, in the midwest of this land, will grow up in a home where your book will be on the shelf and spoken of often." (insert your movie will be shown and spoken of often) "He will grow up with these ideas in his head. He will grow into a great orator. He will speak and his words will be heard throughout this land and throughout the world. This boy will become leader of this country and begin a movement of great change. He will speak of you and your words and your book will be the seeds of many of his great thoughts. They will be the seeds of change." So says the (you call her ethereal, I call her) creepy Brice Dallas Howard to M. Night's "character." OMG! Is that a JOKE?

But, most of all, the whole story is just completely implausible because I find it hard to believe that underwater people would ever have bangs. Like a group of advanced sea creatures are going to be like, "Oh, I need to cut my bangs, I'm getting hair in my face." Ridiculous.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Caption Contest


Write your caption in the comment section.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Sports Coverage

Yesterday my dad and brother came up for a basketball game at UIC against "a true Hoosier team" (according to D-van), Butler. Butler is supposedly 13th in the nation, but they lost to UIC last night, in what was probably one of the most boring games I've ever seen until the last 20 seconds, when they finally started hitting baskets, tied up the game and went into a mildly exciting overtime. I wasn't compelled to jump to my feet or anything, but other people did. Basketball has changed a lot since I've been to games, which I used to do in... high school. It was really commercial. Every time there was a time-out, the cheerleaders had to haul out all these advertisements thinly disguised as games for the crowd. Also, they threw t-shirts into the crowd and gave away pizzas. One was apparently meant to scream their head off for these valuable items. Like I'm gonna shout for a piece of Domino's pizza. Side note: the cheerleaders had much better aim with the t-shirts than the basketball players with the ball.

M. and I were slightly conflicted about our loyalties - sure, we're from IN, but we're Chicagoans now. I went ahead and cheered for both teams about equally and claimed to be there "for love of the game" to all detractors (ie: M). I know! it made me laugh to say it, too.

My dad is a big, big celebrity in Martinsville, where he hosts Damon's Coaches Show on WCBK. We discovered that if you just drive up to the parking garage and say, "We're on the list," you don't have to pay. Here's my dad sitting court side:

and here's my best action shot:

Maybe D-van will hire me as a guest commentator on Hoosier Fun Ball?

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

big warm fuzzy secret heart

My friend A. turned me on to this song Code Monkey by Jonathan Coulton, who, I discovered after further research, wrote a song a week for a year. It's like he looked deep into M's soul and wrote a song about him. Like how he's not crazy, just proud. And refers to code as "elegant." Oh, that cracks me up. You can download the song, and you can watch a bunch of videos made by nerds on YouTube, although, IMO, there's not really any stand-out one, not even the one mashed together with scenes from the Matrix, so don't get excited.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Little House

OMG, so, I'm flipping channels, and I see a rerun of the single most disturbing television show of my youth - this Little House on the Prairie in which Pa, for some reason, is driving his covered wagon next to this other family, and the other pater familias is not a skilled wagonsman like Pa, and their wagon goes careening down this slopping hill and they die! And Pa runs over to their wagon, and you see the other dude's bloody hand hanging out, and Pa lifts up the cloth of the wagon, and then, ugh! He has to look away! Oh, that haunted me - what did their mangled bodies LOOK LIKE? Meanwhile their two adorable children stood by, weeping with their mouths hanging open. One interesting tid-bit: Before they began riding down the hill, Pa says he'll drive his own wagon down, then come walk back up and drive their wagon down. That's kind of rude, right? Then, before the other guy drives his wagon down, he says to his wife, "Let's 'get 'er done'!" Get 'er done!?!? Is Little House on the Prairie the impetus for that?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Capital Punishment Will Not Deter Evil Dictators

I'm really disgusted with the coverage (not to mention the deed) of Saddam's hanging. Isn't it strange that as it turns 2007 it's like we live in the dark ages?

But I am excited about Nancy Pelosi becoming the first woman speaker of the House. The world still has a long way to go before women see real equality, but this is a good step in the right direction. There are only 82 women, or 15.3%, in the 535 seats in the 109th US Congress.

I predict we'll see great things out of Pelosi as speaker - not that it would be hard to top the honor and dignity that the Republicans brought to the White House.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

I miss Arrested Development

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

After a lovely Christmas in Los Angeles, we returned home in time for New Years at my friend's "cottage." Had a terrific time eating, drinking champagne, playing games (Celebrity, anyone?), and admiring the view. Here's the last sunlight of 2006:

and here we all are being silly:

2006 was a good and bad year for me - I don't make resolutions, but I've got high hopes for 2007 (1. Gainful employment!) I wish you the best of luck in the upcoming year!