Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Not 'til you're 15

I did have one good thing happen last night: the Shari Bobbins episode of The Simpsons was one.

I'm not sure if The Shari Bobbins episode makes my personal top ten (probably top twenty), but I do know that I have never laughed so hard at a Simpsons episode as the first time I saw Shari Bobbins.

Here is one of the best songs, including audio (I was going to sing it myself, including all the voices, but wisely was talked about of it):

this is an audio post - click to play
(pushing the green button keeps you on this page)

A Boozehound Named Barney

Shery: In front of a tavern,
Flat on his face,
A boozehound named Barney
Is pleading his case.

Barney: Buy me a beer,
Two bucks a glass.
Come on, help me,
I'm freezing my ass.

Buy me brandy,
A snifter of wine.
Who am I kidding?
I'll drink turpentine.

Moe: Move it, ya drunk,
Or I'll blast your rear end.

Barney: I found two bucks!

Moe: Then come in, my friend!

Shery: And so, let us leave
On this heartwarming scene.

Bart: Can I be a boozehound?

Homer: Not till you're fifteen.

Edited Movies on TV

But they will never take.....our swear words!!!!!

this is an audio post - click to play

At what point does my idiocy earn me closer parking?

Sometimes my own incompetence just sickens me.

How can I supposedly have an I.Q. that approaches the thread count of luxurious Egyptian Cotton Sheets, and I can't do a simple thing like learn basic html code?

And it's not even the code I need to learn, but the short cuts, as blogger makes it so friggin' easy a child could do it!

In fact, children do program html, all the time. And yet, I just can't seem to learn.

Here it is, 23 minutes past when I promised to have my daily material up, and my new site I'm launching looks like crap. I keep fixing and fixing, and nothing helps.

It makes me want to scream. Now I have to scramble and use some of my auxiliary material, and since the next two days are already booked this means I can't launch the new site until at least Monday and....ARGGGGGGGGH!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


There's this thing I can sometimes do with bottled water. If I allow it to freeze without moving it, sometimes it becomes hyper-frozen, where it's still a liquid but below the temperature of freezing.

Then, you shake the bottle and it instantly freezes, only not the crystalline structure of ice, but more of a slushy consistency. This form of ice lasts for a considerable time, and seems to almost have a taste independent of water. It's really hard to describe.

There's only about a 10 minute window that this will work: after that the water goes the way of most ice. If you like freezing your water bottles to have cold water, try it and see if you can reproduce the effect.

Scrubs Retrospotting

Two random Scrub Retrospottings.

I was watching OFFICE SPACE over the weekend--that film was two steps from being perfect--anyway, for the first time I realized that one of the Bobs (the consultants) was none other than Dr. Cox from Scrubs! (I want to say his name is John C. McGinley, but I'm not sure and my Internet browser isn't working well, so for now I'll just call him Dr. Cox.)

Then later I was watching PLATOON, which I've never seen, and there was Dr. Cox again! So weird to see him in that role, so similar to Dr. Cox and yet so different.

Oh, and I know I'm an idiot for admitting to this, but I had no idea that Jordan was from The Drew Carey Show. Every time I saw her I thought she looked familiar, but I didn't watch Drew Carey but once or twice, so when I flipped past it the other night and saw her I almost shouted.


Just watched IRREVERSIBLE. I'm not sure how I can even do a review on this movie. Because of the subject matter, I'll have to make it HyperionX.

I'll save more until then, but one thing: I felt sick the entire movie, and wondered if I was just overly affected by what I was watching. Come to find out the first half hour has background noise set at 28 mhz, which is virtually inaudible but causes nausea, dizziness and vertigo in people.

Clearly that's what the director wanted. I don't feel so much like a weakling now.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Reaction to TV finales

I finally saw the LOST finale early this morning, and this evening I saw Season 2 Battlestar Galactica Finale. Except for My Name is Earl (which doesn't really count, as a comedy), this catches me up. I think I may do a top ten list of Season Finales, if not this year (haven't seen enough) then all-time.


Alias and West Wing - Once proud shows that got so far off track even I had to bail. I may catch the final seasons on DVD some day, but the whole thing makes me sad. My dad tells me West Wing ended well, at least. Sniff sniff.

The Unit - I enjoyed the show, and at times (read: David Mamet-written and directed episodes) The Unite went from good to great. But the finale was weak and I'm unsure what they are going to do with this show. They seem caught between procedural and serialization, the new Hybrid, and that's tough ground to straddle.

Grey's Anatomy - I got out of this show in February. I enjoyed it more and more each week, but I was trying to cut as much TV down as possible, and I cut all of Sunday night. I did see the finale. Izzy drives me nuts, and I hate George's hair cut. Never did like Meredith.

CSI - I've already written extensively about this one.

Prison Break - I lost a good deal of interest in the show once it came back from hiatus, but I have to say the finale was very well done. I was shocked that they (apparently) killed the doctor with the OD. I figured she'd be in the break. My dad thinks they didn't kill her and she'll still be a big player next season. Hard to know if they can keep the momentum, but I wish them well.

24 - I've written about this too, and how a jerk ruined it for me. I got quite a lot of mail on the decision about whether to tell his wife of his infidelity. Ajax in particular was strongly against my actions. Ajax pointed out to me that if I knew the girl personally, felt strongly about the sanctity of marriage or felt the family was in emotional harm that'd be one thing, but just as revenge...that's quite a wrecking ball to throw on a marriage.

He's right, of course. I don't know the wife, but wish her no ill will, and to do something like that just because I'm pissed over a TV show would be wrong; not because it's too stern of a reaction (for all I'm concerned the guy can drop dead, and if he's reading this: "If you ever mess with me again I will ruin your life"), but because I'm hurting that girl who did nothing to me. I was never really going to do it, I was just mad when I wrote that and that's what a blog is supposed to be: your honest reactions to your daily life. Don't know if I'll watch the finale now or not.

House - I wrote about this earlier in the week but didn't post my thoughts. Sometimes when I don't protect myself when I write, and lay myself out there, vulnerable. I mean, to make yourself vulnerable is the only way to become a better writer, but I need to be more careful. So I'll leave it at this: not a normal episode, but very impressive to me. If you haven't watched House I can't recommend buying or renting Season 1 highly enough.

Battlestar Galactica - I have been so impressed with the dark tone this series has taken from the beginning ,and the willingness to hurt their characters emotionally and physically. It really feels like they are experiencing war and the bad decisions that go with it, more than playing out their roles.

That said, I haven't liked every move they've made, although mostly that's because as a fan you get in your mind where you'd like the story to go. All you can really ask is that the writing and acting is good and the stories fresh and compelling. The finale threw a huge left curve toward the end, but when the end reveal came I could see what they're trying to set up. Season 2 was inferior to Season 1 (perhaps because of more episodes = thinner storylines?), but still better than most else out there. I must write a MovieHype about the DVDs soon.

LOST - Blood and Bloody ashes, there simply is nothing on TV like Lost, is there? When it's all said and done, I think watching Season 2 of Lost straight through on DVD will make it as good if not better than Season 1. The problem is that Lost is so dense, with so many layers and hidden meaning, that you really need to watch it consistently. ABC ran so many repeats, and without much logic, that it was hard to pick up a rhythm. They'd run three repeats and then a new one, and then two more repeats and then a new one. Can't do that with Lost. Hopefully Season 3 will take care of that, as they are running 7 straight in the fall, then going on hiatus for a new show until February or so, then running straight through again.

Anyway, the finale: I've talked to a few who felt, well, lost, but I didn't have that problem. Yes, many more questions than answers were raised, but if you examine where we are now to where we were at the beginning of the season, an extraordinary amount of plot has transpired in what I keep reminding myself is only about 2 months of actual island-time.

Giving Desmond's backstory was a brilliant masterstroke to explaining the hatch (at least, partly), and that "partner" of his...did you notice that was the guy who interrogated Sayid? And how did Desmond's girl know to look for him? Does someone else know he's there? Is that girl's father connected to the Hanso Foundation and Dharma?

Speaking of the Hanso, I was fast forwarding through the commercials, so almost missed it, but did you see the Hanso commercial? It was ( and I think there is also a Hanso Foundation ( The creators of Lost have gone to so much trouble to dribble out facts. I love it; just wish I had more time.

Anyway, even if it's maddening, Lost was hands-down the best final of the this season. Slow-building and yet explosive. Tense and exciting, advancing the plot an absurd degree (for them), and yet leaving so many questions I can hardly wait for fall.

I just hope I have a TV by then.

Friday, May 26, 2006

of PayPal and false hope

I have a pretty cool email notification on my Outlook Express. For a long time I had Mr. T saying "Mail, Motherfucker!" a la the guy in EUROTRIP. However, if I happened to have the volume raised, Mr. T could be heard across the street.

I switched to something called "sliderock.wav" (Google it and it should come up). Much better sound.

Anyway, I was working on Monday's column when I heard the sliderock and saw the little envelope pop up on my lower right of the screen. Mail is always good. It could be a witty comment from my top ten list. It could be an email from a old friend. It could even be Tracy Lynn finally admitting that she loves me.

Even better, I saw the email was from PayPal. Heart in my throat I tore open the email, only to discover that it wasn't some patron of the arts, wanting the Hyperion Institute to continue its good work. It was just a survey on PayPal's efficacy from a registered user standpoint.

Talk about your emotional whiplash.

What would an idiot filter look like?

I feel like this has been a lost week (no pun intended, as I still haven't seen the season finale of TV's best show). I have all these plans for the website(s), but each day it gets morning and I don't have done what I want. I'm not sure I can work any more hours than I have been, but some how I have to become more efficient. I'm not entirely sure why I'm pushing so hard. I guess I just feel this sense of urgency to get these last few projects off the ground and self-sufficient in case I'm not always there to spear head them.

I wonder if that's what Jesus felt like towards the end?

Speaking of which, I'm reading this fascinating book called "The Jesus Dynasty" by James Tabor. It's one of six books I'm currently reading. I like to spread the books out in different rooms, so no matter where I am I have something to read. (Yes, including the bathroom. Don't even get me started on you haters who think that's a bad idea.)

Anyway, Tabor's book is sharing time with a 9/11 conspiracy tome in my "right before sleep" reading slot. The other night (who am I kidding; the other morning) I was just about to fall asleep when I had what may be the most brilliant thought of my lifetime. However, I was so tired that I wasn't sure if it was brilliant, or just seemed brilliant because I was losing my focus.

I'm not sure how most of you do it, but when I get that tired and I'm still trying to read I'm usually reduced to one eye to conserve energy. Do you do that?

So like I said, some day I may write a book and gain acclaim for this thought, or it may be stupid.

Also speaking of Tabor, he inspired a column that sadly will have to go in Hyperion X when I finally post it. Not because there is any foul language or sexual content or violence or adult subject matter or Connie Chung, but simply because I just know the very notion will piss a lot of people off.

It shouldn't, but it will. People are so unedumacated it makes me sad. I would post this today, but with the Carnival Crowd, I want to make nice in case this is their first impression.

Achk! Just writing that last sentence depresses me. Why am I always holding back?

Screw it. I'm going to sleep. Come Monday I start blowing people up. What's the point of being this smart if you run every sentence through an idiot-filter?

Thursday, May 25, 2006

No Lost

I didn’t see the Lost finale. (Please don’t ruin it for me.) I recorded it, but my head hurt so badly I knew I wouldn’t enjoy it. Had one of those big conversations with my dad about where my life is going. Not a fight or anything, but I always get such a huge big headache after one of those things.

I knew I was in trouble when I heard he wanted to take me to this all you can eat barbeque restaurant. I’ve wanted to go since I heard they opened, but when one sibling is invited to dinner and not the others, it’s always for one of those “talks.” I

I told him I didn’t want to go to dinner because I wasn’t up for the talk, but then we had it anyway. Now I wish I’d have at least gotten dinner out of it. (I toyed with the idea of telling him he still owed me an all you can eat barbecue dinner, but that’s probably a bad idea. The man has done so much to help me, best not to push it.)

I think I’ll just take tons of advil and tylenol and hope it goes away. At least I’ll have something to watch tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The rules of the game

I got another classic in the mail yesterday: THE RULES OF THE GAME. It’s a movie I’ve heard so much about but really didn’t know anything about. Often cited as the best movie of all time. Bet you didn’t know that. I got to talking with a friend the other day about what movies have the greatest number of people who claim it is the best movie ever made. (Not favorite movie, but “best.”) Here is my guess:






Probably in that order. Anyway, in that light, seeing THE RULES OF THE GAME is a pretty big thing. I haven’t written my review yet. I wanted to watch it twice, but where to find the time, not to mention the fact that I wanted to get it in the mail quickly to get another movie. Sometimes I think I’m slave to that system. While I wouldn’t call RULES my favorite film, I think I see why it enters that “best” film conversation.

Oh, and I decided not to tell my ex-friend’s wife about the cheating. But I will not be speaking to him for some time.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I was so busy work that I didn’t get to watch the 24 Finale last night. I was going to tape it, and then someone sent me the details, ruined them.

I am so pissed off right now. I don’t even know if I will watch it now. How hard is it for people to be careful when it comes to TV shows or a movie or something? To put a warning up if they are going to write something, or just inquire before shooting off their mouth?

What makes matters worse is that I told this person I hadn’t watched it, and they sent me the details anyway. What makes people do that? Do they think it’s funny? I certainly don’t.

The Diabolical part of me wants to get back at him. I know for a fact that he’s cheated on his wife. I stayed out of it because I don’t really know her and I didn’t think it was my place. Not my life. But I’m so pissed about him ruining 24 that I’m tempted to tell his wife.

What would Jack Bauer do?

Monday, May 22, 2006


I got RASHOMON in the mail on Thursday, but didn’t get to watch it until just now. Normally I like to watch the movies as soon as possible, so I can get them back in the mail and get another film, but Friday I was too tired to watch it, and with Monday a fake holiday up here, I knew I had until tomorrow.

RASHOMON is a Kurosawa film. So far I’ve only seen RAN, although I taped SEVEN SAMURAI and THRONE OF BLOOD, but have had no time. I know of the book Rashomon and how it has entered the lexicon of public consciousness, but had never seen the film.

I’ll write a few review up later this week, but suffice it to say I was totally blown away. I’m still a bit upset about Barbaro and my connection to him, but that didn’t stop me from goggling at the film. I watched the last half hour with commentary from some film big shot, and I honestly think it made me enjoy things even more, as the dude pointed out tons of things I missed. I can’t wait to watch the rest.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

throw up

I just saw what happened at the Preakness and I’m almost sick. To watch Barbaro get this horrific injury, and full of so much adrenaline that he tried to catch the other horses anyway. Thank the Light the jockey was able to stop him somehow. They said on the news that doctors are going to operate, which is rare because with almost any horse with an injury like this they just put him down.

I know this sounds stupid, but I really feel in the pit of my stomach that this happened because I didn’t watch. I think I’m going to throw up.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Preakness no-show

I’m really depressed. I missed the Preakness earlier today. It’s the first Triple Crown race I haven’t watched since I think 1997. I don’t know why I got into horseracing, but I found I love those two minutes when the horses are flying around the track. The majesty of the animals is almost unreal. I asked a couple of people to watch with me, and they couldn’t. Whether then watching it myself, as I usually do, I just went back to bed. I’m such a moron. I don’t even want to see who won. Barbaro was so impressive in the Derby that I assume he’ll wing. I pick Hemmingway’s Key to Place and Diabolical to Show, mostly because I like that word.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Thoughts on the CSI Finale

I just got to watch the CSI season finale. (PLOT SPOILER DISCUSSED SOON.) I have to say that overall it wasn’t that great an episode. After last week with Brass getting shot I expected much more. Not to mention the website I was touting that had all those clues! That was such a cool site, but most of it came to naught. What’s up with that?

Also, last week Warrick had his drama with his new wife, and then they just drop it? (And can I say that Warrick is ten times boring now that he’s married?)

This week they really didn’t even have any interesting cases. Both of the cases turned out to be accidents, and while it was interesting to see the people under stress (especially Warrick’s weird attack on the sister of that guy who died), this was done so much better in last season’s final episode directed by Quentin Tarrantino.

Of course, what everyone will be talking about is the ending, which revealed Grissom and Sara have a relationship! Because they are apparently in a hotel, and this is the first we’ve seen it, I think we can reasonably infer that their relationship is a secret. That could bode well for drama in the future, if it all comes out.

I wrote a column almost three years ago where I advocated not fulfilling romantic desires in a show like CSI. The column is surprisingly good (hint hint): Here is one part, dealing with what we’re talking about:

The Unrequited Love Theory
The best monster movies wait as long as possible to show you their creature; knowing that whatever you come up with in your imagination is worse than anything they can film. The same works with TV, in a different way. Based on the earlier Conflict Theory, it is almost always better for characters not to get together romantically. Sometimes the whole show is based on love, but even then, it’s better if the love stories don’t work out, at least not for very long. I hear so many people (read: women) wish for certain characters to have relationships (in the business these people are called “shippers”). They want the happy ending. Everyone does. But in an ongoing TV show, this is death. Like I wrote, all drama is based on conflict, and once the conflict is resolved, there goes the tension of the drama. As much as you might hate this, you know it to be true. The best shows are where it doesn’t work out for the characters, and you’re so frustrated at his/her inability to get the girl or keep the guy that you could scream. That’s what makes serialized TV so great, and that’s what keeps us watching.

I definitely hold to that, but like I wrote on Monkey Barn two weeks ago, the show is almost to the point where it will start receding in the public consciousness if it doesn’t do something, so while I love Grissom and loathe Sara, I’m on board.

One other note: Probably the best scene in CSI history (not Tarrantino-related) is when Grissom talks to this doctor (who’s getting away with murder) about being attracted to a younger colleague. Gris goes on about new life from a younger woman, and how he couldn’t take the risk to his career even though he wanted to. We pan back to see Sara watching through the two-way mirror. Just powerful stuff.

Okay, I guess I have two more notes: I also caught the end of the episode where Sara is pulled over for DUI. They’d been building this all that season. Sara’s meltdown was partly because she made her pitch to Grissom and he rejected her, and partly of her screwed up childhood (which we finally found out about in that great mental institution episode this year). Anyway, Grissom comes to take her home, and I think that’s the start of their relationship, or at least led to it. Just my opinion.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

I am having Veronica withdrawal

I was so pumped up after my Sturm und Drang Gauntlet on Tuesday, and here it is Thursday and I don’t have my talked about Intellectual column. Part of it isn’t my fault as I am conferring with colleagues, but the real reason is that I got obsessed with watching Veronica Mars Season 1. I do this with new television shows; just go completely nuts. I guess there are worse things. Now I’m done with the Season and I have no one to talk about it with. I got my sister to watch the first four episodes, but I couldn’t wait and watched the last 18 on my own. Everyone else who’s a fan just finished Season 2, so there’s no one! Isn’t it frustrating when you want to discuss and you can’t!

What am I doing?

Friday, May 05, 2006

Chinese Fortune Cookies

this is an audio post - click to play

[please don't judge the quality of this post, as I didn't write it out ahead of time. Ah, screw it. Judge it all you want.]