Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Strange deserted places

I hate looking at flickr photos -- they take forever to load and I usually wish people would just fucking edit the set so we see the best handful instead of like three hundred craptacular ones -- but this one totally compelled me: Jonathan Rouse's set of photos from his road trip to the Salton Sea.

This is a place whose name sounds more mysterious and awesome the more you say it -- the sibilance, the romance of the word "sea" instead of "lake," the way it kind of whispers in your mind.

And the place itself -- such a wasteland, with strange remnants of humanity clinging here and there. It's like what I imagine the whole world would look like after a nuclear war -- well, the places that didn't get a direct hit, anyway.

The photos give me this weird crawly feeling, like when I read John Cheever's short story "The Swimmer," which is to my mind the scariest horror story ever written.

Read the original post, put the set on slideshow, and be prepared to go somewhere ... strange.

Labels: ,

Monday, January 29, 2007

How is it possible to have your head this far up your own ass?

I read my hometown newspaper online every weekday -- gotta keep up with the Wreck of the Day, the Stupid Jackass Crime of the Week, the Local Political Brouhaha of the Month, and the regular features like the Heartwarming Heartlanders Pulling Your Heartstrings In A Simultaneously Patriotic and Aww-Shucks Way, doncha know.

The Letters to the Editor are among my must-reads, of course -- I occasionally even write one, usually in response to some jacktard's ignorant scribbled nonsense, and most of the time I even use my real name (albeit my married name, because my mother, who still lives in that town and decidedly does not share my political leanings, doesn't need a Molotov through her window).

But sometimes I can't even formulate a response, because the letter in question is such a mind-blowing bizarro-world screed that it foils utterly my capacity for rational, ordered thought. Today's awesomeness, from a Jim Norman of Alvord, is one of those. He's pissed off at Bush and the Repuglican Party -- but get this, it's not about the maladministration's countless crimes against humanity, its bumblings and fumblings and obfuscations and highway fucking robbery of the American people, allowed to rage virtually unchecked for six years -- no, it's for "cowering in fear of the Democratic Party and the media." Oh my. Continues Mr. Norman:
I’m upset that the president and his advisors have utterly failed in challenging the Democratic propaganda and media hypocrisy that America has been subjected to for the past six years. Because the president took a passive stance to the daily garbage, innuendo and outright lies that have been spread about him and his policies, those same lies and distortions have been elevated to the level of truth and fact in the minds of many Americans.

Woweee. Where should I start? I can't. You get me? I ... have no response to this. If you're this willfully ignorant of reality, there's nothing I can do to help you.

There's more, too -- read the whole thing, and then join me in banging your head against the nearest brick wall ...

Labels: , ,

Friday, January 26, 2007

Top Ten Things I Learned in College

Having no blog idears of my own today, I shamelessly steal this theme from the Hip-Hop Lawyer, who gets full credit for originating the idea ...

1) You know how smart you thought you were, back in your tiny high school in your tiny town? Well, maybe you are that smart. But guess what? Nearly everyone around you now is WAY smarter.

2) White boys that went to prep school are either into Phish and dating Asian girls, or are insufferable douchebags whose families have more money than God, and who are convinced they'll be running the world someday (NB: they're pretty much right about that).

3) Your parents might not be 100% right on every single thing in the history and future of ever.

4) If you are a girl, you don't ever have to wait too long to get a drink at a frat party. This is as true at a notoriously low-Greek-participation Ivy as it is at a UC Chico as it is at every bar you'll ever go to in your life.

5) Foreign students are all rich, unless they're super-extra-fucking-rich. And a surprising number of them are nobility.

6) Yes, you have to tip. Yes, for everything. Yes, even though you're broke as shit. Yes, every single time. Jesus.

7) Your parents are done giving you money beyond what they get charged by the college -- not one more dime. Tip: buy your munchy food on the University meal plan -- it's not itemized, so they don't know it's all going for Cheetos and Froot Loops that you'll scarf down while baked.

8) Disagreement does not equal disrespect. That said, passionate discussions of the dialectic of postmodern this or that, or the dominant paradigm of the other? Leave 'em in the dorm hallway when you graduate, OK, chief?

9) Being surrounded by people who aren't straight white middle-class Christians from the south is eye-opening, especially if it never occurred to you before that you might not be the norm and the standard worldwide.

10) You ain't Jack Kerouac, and you ain't F. Scott Fitzgerald. The sooner you get over that idea, the better.


Thursday, January 25, 2007

Get 'im a body bag!

Oh man, you guys, Best Video Ever.

A bunch of the original actors from the Greatest Movie Ever Made (Karate Kid, of course), more than one Raising Arizona shout-out, and a jeroboam of total fucking awesomeness.

Best 3 minutes you'll have all day, I promise.


Labels: ,

Yeah, I was in the shit

And another thing about Magnum: He and Rick and TC were all Vietnam vets. It was important to the story (Magnum, P.I. was one of the first shows to integrate Vietnam vets into a show, and have them neither be total headcases from the trauma of combat, nor renounce the war and all things military).

It won't work if you make them, say, Gulf War I vets, or else pretend they weren't in the military; if you don't use the original guys, but you still made them Vietnam vets, you'd have to set it in the 80s. So dumb, man. I don't need to see another movie where a Rubik's Cube or a Members Only jacket is the shorthand for "ooh, look, it's the 80s! Weren't they funny! ha ha!"



Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Things of which I am ignorant, but will bet cash money over anyway

Internets, I know y'all can all find the list of Oscar nominees on your own, but I was moved to post it by the fact that I have seen -- for the first time in my life -- exactly ONE of the nominated films (Monster House, nominee for Best Animated Feature, which RULES and you should all see it ASAP, except it really is too scary for actual children, so don't say I didn't warn you about the little tykes' impending gibbering nightmares).

Now, I've got lots of the nominated pitcher shows Netflixed, but as of today, haven't seen any of the Best Pictures, much less the Best Actor/Actress/Supporting, etc. The ones I've got selected will eventually make their way to the top of the aforementioned Netflix queue, provided I don't keep moving stuff like Beer League and Season 1 of The Amazing Race to the top -- but either they only showed at shithole art theaters like Embarcadero Plaza (4X8' screens, bogus corn, insufferable a-holes like the ones I was an Ivy League film studies major alongside for patrons), or it was too much ag to bother with them at regular theaters like 1000 Van Ness or the Gleemonex household's "local," the Thuggy Teen Plaza 20, so fuck 'em. I'll see 'em when I see 'em, at my house. With booze.


Thursday, January 18, 2007

Not much Macho in that Taco

Did y'all hear who's allegedly going to be in the Magnum, P.I. movie?

McConaughey as Magnum. William H. Macy as Higgins. Steve Zahn as Rick. Fucking Tyrese as TC.

Jesus H. W. Christ in a sidecar drinking tequila. Why does Hollywood have its head so damn far up its own ass?

I'm telling you right now, "the kids" aren't going to go see this movie, no matter who's in it. People like me -- early 30s to mid-40s, who watched the show in prime time and have since TiVoed and DVD'd the shit out of all 8 years of it -- WE'RE the ones you want to aim at. And WE want the original cast, no exceptions. Even Manetti, the little bastard, because Rick's a friggin doofus and we like it that way.

So Selleck's over 60 and the power alleys are lookin more like power highways these days -- he looks plenty younger than that (I'd believe 50), he's a lot more with-it mentally than some other people who are reprising decades-old roles at present (yeah, I'm talkin about you, Harrison "Indiana Jones and the Walker of Doom" Ford), and even more to the point, no one else can be Thomas Sullivan Magnum IV.

As for John Hillerman -- he's listed by IMDB as "retired," but I can't stand the idea of anyone else as Higgins. Goddammit, pay him enough dough to do a couple of days' worth of shoots, have him be happily retired on the estate -- which, in Higgins' case, would be still in uniform, directing a younger staff whose service is, naturally, Not Up To Snuff. Just as long as he gets to say "Oh. My. God." at least once ...



Labels: , ,

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The truthiness hurts

I see they've chosen Rich Little to host the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner this year. Colbert cut too close to the bone there, did he?

Oh yes, we can't be exposed to anything like:

I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message: that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound -- with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.

And the press certainly shouldn't be expected to hear of themselves:

But the rest of you, what are you thinking, reporting on NSA wiretapping or secret prisons in eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason: they're super-depressing. And if that's your goal, well, misery accomplished. Over the last five years you people were so good -- over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn't want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out. Those were good times, as far as we knew.

Let's stick instead to some lame "impersonations" of 20-years-out-of-date celebrities nobody fucking gave a shit about even when they were current. Nobody's gonna YouTube that shit. Nobody's gonna blog about it. Dumb bitches like Ana Marie Cox won't need to wag their manicured fingers at this happy asshole. The laughter will be the type elicited by the "cool" visiting pastor at the First Baptist Church -- nobody will be forced to think about anything or confront the truth at all. So that's real nice. Ugh.

Labels: ,

Weather forecast for New Orleans: Hotter

I am not one to give a flying fuck about "celeb" couples (I don't count snarking over the loathsome ones, because that's not care -- that's my bitchy sense of humor and pretense to moral and intellectual superiority).

My one exception is Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt. Those two put their money where their superhott mouths are -- for instance, you know how most famous women will pretend they don't want paparazzi taking pictures of them while they're pregnant, and/or of the new baby, allegedly because they want privacy for themselves and their families? But then they'll show up all over everywhere all styled up and tee-heeing about it? Well, these two went to Namibia -- the second-least-densely populated country in the world -- to get away from prying eyes. No whoring celeb photographer is going to go to fucking Namibia, man. And then when the Jolie-Pitts sold their baby photos, they gave all the money to charity. Ten million bucks. Once again, putting your money where your mouth is. And now I read that they've moved to New Orleans. Granted, the house they bought is in the French Quarter, not the Ninth Ward, but still -- that's pretty fucking far from Los Angeles, and I bet the little pair of do-gooders won't just be sitting around having coffee with their friends while the city stagnates around them, either.

Well-played sir, madame.


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Warning: Reading This Could Give You the Clap, and Eyeball Scabies

Saw this today on Salon:

Lindsay Lohan's current man, according to Page Six, is porn king
Joe "Girls Gone Wild" Francis.

Oh, godamighty, Lindsay. QUIT BEING A WHORE!

Labels: ,

Monday, January 15, 2007

Things learned at balls o'clock a.m.

Going to the gym before work requires getting up at an unholy, painful hour. And but sometimes you learn things. Today's nugget:

There is no way that whistling as you stroll along a deserted pre-dawn street in a chilly coastal town doesn't sound creepy.

Thanks, weird guy. I like learning. Please don't kill or vampirize me.


Friday, January 12, 2007

[incoherent, wrathful sputtering, with spittle and foam]

Heads are poppin up all over the cube farm around me -- my howl of doomed rage brought em all up like a giant whack-a-mole game.

God. Fucking. DAMMIT.

We knew this was going to happen, we watched slackjawed and bug-eyed as each day's strip lurched onto the screen like some terrible grinding nightmare that you're helpless to wake up from -- and yet, we held out hope.

Maybe it's a surprise engagement party! Maybe ... uhh ... ok, if it is The Grand Betrayal, then Liz will turn right around and elope with Warren!

Grasping at the weakest, most unlikely straws ...

But no. It's all over.

Paul's a lying cheating dirtbag without even the stones to tell her BEFORE she comes to Mtigwaki (he's not a Patterson or a Patterson Childhood Sweetheart, after all!), Warren's merely a Friend, and Liz will trot, wounded and twice burned by the Mean Old World, right back into the arms of Granthony -- where, firmly back in her parents' good graces and living right down the street from them, she'll spend her life combing cinnabon crumbs out of the pornstache, watching her ass get bigger and bigger as she quits her job, mothers the Spawn of Therese, and procreates with an ambitionless lump of Sanctimonious Boringness, just like she was Born To Do.

Christ, I need a drink.


Thursday, January 11, 2007

Camel filters and pheromones

Internets, you may be about to hate on me real hard, but here's the thing: I watch Two and a Half Men. And I like it. So there.

Mr. Gleemonex and I started watching it because 1)Chuck Lorre created it, and 2)it's good to see Jon Cryer gettin work.

We kept watching because it's caustic and blackhearted (especially the Force of Evil that is their mother Evelyn, played by Holland Taylor), it's consistently funny, and the kid is the biggest. dumb. ass. in the history of child actors -- he is awesome, no joke.

I know damn well what a jacktard Charlie Sheen is in real life, and there's nothing I can do about that. He's fucking funny on this show, though, the prick.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Mysteries of the fondue restaurant

Cocktail onions, where have you been all my life?

Labels: ,

what do you want for dinner/I dunno/what do YOU want

Late to the party, I know — but have you guys seen Everyday Food? We came across it during our recent cocoon weekend up in the Russian River valley, in a rented vacation house with a fireplace and a hot tub that was on a deck hanging out over the valley. Between visits to the hot tub, we flicked on the TV for a bit, and got sucked in by this little nugget of a show … things are gonna change around here.

I cook a lot, partly because I love to (weekends, special occasions) and partly (weekdays) because there’s no other choice (Half-ass-ville, CA, has like 2 pizza places and one pan-Asian that deliver, and that is IT). My long-established weeknight repertoire has needed some new menu items for awhile now, and this show (plus its website, with all the recipes) may be just the ticket.

Last night we did the tortellini with mushroom sauce
, which was pretty good stuff — next time we’ll spice it up some more, maybe toss in some sherry or white wine, but it was a quick & easy weeknight dinner. Rawk.

Labels: ,

Monday, January 08, 2007

Is it really so strange?

I know it's wrong, but the thing is, Bam Margera? Kinda sexy. In a weird, don't-actually-wanna-ever-meet-him, he's-really-totally-disgusting-and-horrible kind of way. But still.


Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Man-Killer of the Canadian Suburbs, or, It's Rainin Men

So OK, they've been pushing and pushing the Granthony thing, which grinds on with enervating inevitability, and now, out of the blue, after weeks of Saint Michael's continuing trials at the hands of both the burninating Kelpfroths and the stubborn Muse, first a hot firefighter shows up, and then -- THEN -- who comes to visit Our Lady of Filial Duty, Elizabeth, but ... WARREN!

Yes, Warren the Studly Helicopter Pilot, long ago cast off after being used most foully -- remember, she had Paul, aka Canada's Finest, drive her to where Warren could pick her up in his 'copter and ferry her the rest of the way home (or maybe it was the reverse order?) and then ditched him? hoo boy, that took a set of stones.



How you know you are going to lose on Judge Judy

If you are the one who gears up to tell Judy a long story and you start it with "FIRST of all," you will not be getting the money that guy owes you.

And if you include the mangled syntax of "I had told him" or "He had told me," you are gonna end up owing HIM money, even though he totally did just TAKE all those sneakers and that lamp and your weave from you when he moved out and they were NOT a loan. Because Judy has HAD IT with you.


Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Stab stab stab stabbity stab. Repeat.

To the four hoodie-sweatshirt-and-baseball-cap-clad frat boys at the My Morning Jacket show at the Fillmore this weekend: No. Just, no.

Do not show up so drunk that you can barely stand upright BEFORE the opening band has even started. Amateurs.

There is more alcohol in the world — right over there at the bar, as a matter of fact. You don’t have to hold it all, in double shot glasses (2 per person), as you weave around, lurching into people and spilling it on them.

Do you even know what band this is? From the way you dressed and the amount of attention you paid to the stage, I’m thinkin, no. So why’d you come here, chief?

That girl you’re slobberingly hitting on? DOESN’T LIKE YOU. You’d know that if you weren’t such a bag of cocks.

I held onto my beer bottle after I drained it, for the specific purpose of cashing your bitch-ass check if you lurched into ME. You’re lucky you missed.

Goddamn, do I hate people.


Come quickly! I am drinking stars!

So we rang in the new year with a bottle of Dom Perignon, vintage 1998, which was given to me and Mr. Gleemonex by a divine gift-giver and all-around stellar human known as my brother.

Oh my.

A beautiful pale golden color, it was filled with thousands and thousands of the tiniest bubbles. It evaporated on the tongue, leaving just the lightest most wonderful taste … and the next day, there was no headache, just a warming memory of flavor and effervescence.

Internets, if you have the means, I highly recommend obtaining and consuming this beverage as soon as you possibly can. Please do trust your good friend and advisor Gleemonex on this one.