Monday, December 31, 2007

Best of 2007

1. The Assassination of Jesse James
2. No Country for Old Men
3. Juno
4. Control
5. Paris Je T'aime
6. King of Kong
7. Ratatouille
8. Zodiac
9. Hot Fuzz
10* TBD (probably will be There Will Be Blood)

So many other good films:
Once, Into the Wild, Knocked Up, Michael Clayton, Gone Baby Gone, Across the Universe, This is England, The Brave One, the first 2/3 of Sunshine, Planet Terror

Didn't Like: Before the Devil Knows You're Dead, Eastern Promises, Sweeney Todd, Superbad, Margot at the Wedding, Darjeeling Limited (want to give it a second chance)

Music:
1. Of Montreal - Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?
2. Explosions in the Sky - All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone
3. Radiohead - In Rainbows

Didn't listen to much music this year.

Books:
Blankets
Black Hole
A Spot of Bother
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Man. Is that it?

Places:
St. Augustine - actually rather liked it.
Houston - also liked it, very much.
Galveston - rode horses on the beach, pretty lovely.
New Orleans - in love.
Helen, GA - very cool.

Et al.
Henry Barfight
Twinhead/Christian Comic Chaos
Romp/Chomp and Stomp
Too much else to remember.
Very good year.

2008

Read more (gotta keep it up). Run, lose weight. Save more money.

DVDs I still need to watch:

Woman Under the Influence
Killing of a Chinese Bookie
Opening Night
Brief Encounter
M
The Lives of Others
Foreign Correspondent
The Wrong Man
Suspicion
I Confess
The Stranger
Killer Bait
Le Corbeau
Quai des Orfevres

Thursday, December 13, 2007

GPB & J

Today was my first day of work at Georgia Public Broadcasting. After working for about a month with my former professor Jonathan Harris on getting situated, I was finally accepted as an apprentice in his program.

The day began with their office party -- I've never had such good timing. A great way to meet people and a smörgåsbord of free food. And then my work day commenced, after a wonderful tour by Julian. I'm working on an oral history project featuring World War II vets from Georgia. It's really interesting, but not the most thrilling thing to work on. I'm reminded of the vets interviewed at the start of episodes in the Band of Brothers mini series. Only now the vets speak at great length about their experiences. It feels like a very meaningful project to be working on, which is very different from other shows I've worked on.

I just feel in my element at GPB. Plus, judging from the office party, the staff is a more approachable size, more close-knit. And much friendlier. The Executive Director thanked everyone and listed many projects that have been worked on. It seemed more arduous than endearing, but it did make me think, I can't remember the last time I worked on something and felt the impact of that work.

Another plus is the longer train ride. Granted, any excuse to ride MARTA for a shorter duration should be heeded, but I do, for some reason, enjoy the North/South line. It's very unreliable and there are a lot more people who ride it, but it makes me feel like I live in a city. And not to mention, walking through Midtown is an exhilarating way to start your day (it'll be better once it's cold again!). Plus, the longer ride means I have some real time to read.

I've begun reading Harry Potter. I'm minutes away from finishing the first book, and I have to say it rides the line between reminding me of reading books when I was a kid and being a really well-told story. This is all complimentary. The stories are so good and the characters so well defined that you can't help but get sucked back into that mental cave of comfort you had when you were a child.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Monday, December 3, 2007

I'm never reading again.

Ok, so that's not true. But I just got a new HDTV from a coworker. And it rocks. We're not even watching HD movies or anything, it's just such an upgrade from our last 19" TV. The sound alone is worth the upgrade. We gave the new TV a test run with the last scene from Hot Fuzz. What a good choice, I heard sound effects I'd never heard before, and it looked gorgeous too. Then, we watched Planet Earth...again, splendid. Then, I watched Minority Report. Then, we watched Drop Dead Gorgeous.


Needless to say, I love watching movies on this thing. I really want to burn through the movies I own that I have yet to watch. Because I'm a huge nerd, here is a list of my ten favorite Criterion Collection films (after reading through this same feature on their site, I couldn't resist):
1. In the Mood for Love
2. Le Samourai

3. Battle of Algiers

4. Playtime

5. La Haine
6. The Third Man

7. Man Bites Dog

8. Hoop Dreams
9. The Royal Tenenbaums

10. Faces

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Coup de grâce!

That's it. I'm absolutely fucking sick of publications like the New York Times, Pitchfork Media, and probably countless others using French phrases in their writing. I don't understand. It's written snobbery, and it's condescending. "Hm, let's see, nothing in English really expresses what I'm trying to say here. Ah, of course, éminence grise does the trick."

And it's not like I'm a stupid person, either. I mean, I can be dumb, sure. But when you've written an article on Heath Ledger in "I'm Not There," going to great lengths to describe the fucking jeans he's wearing, don't relegate me to a lower tier of erudition by turning to your "French Phrases for Insecure Assholes Compendium."

Don't get me wrong, I love the New York Times, but get over yourselves. I saw "Margot at the Wedding," you New York intelligentsia types are mean.

Related note: does anyone remember how Bugs Bunny used to say "coop da grace-y?"

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Dance like Ian Curtis



"Control" is one of my favorite films from this year. It's a film with both a terse protagonist and terse visuals; it aims to strip away any layer of legend behind Joy Division, but not really. Anton Corbijn, whom I know as a director of music videos (specifically "Heart-Shaped Box" by Nirvana), presents the events in a very flattened way. Take the scene where Ian tells his wife (played by Samantha Morton, whom I always confuse with Emily Watson) that he's been cheating on her. They shoot the scene with a telephoto lens, flattening any sense of depth -- the houses on the hill in the background are very striking, as are the cars lining the road in the foreground. In between these images are Ian and his wife, essentially walking in place as he tells her, in stark black and white. It's very beautiful.

Another aspect of the film I loved was the depiction of music. Normally, and many films are incredibly guilty of this, music is out of sync with what's on screen. Drummers hit anything but the correct drums in accordance with the music heard, guitarists feebly strum the strings for no reason. Here, the actors-as-band-members all perform the songs live, essentially, and it brings this immediacy and sense of honesty to the portrayal of the band. It doesn't feel like we're watching Joaquin Phoenix do his best Johnny Cash. We're watching Joy Division.

Sam Reilly's performance as Ian Curtis embodies what is legendary about the frontman. His energy, the feeling that he was actually giving every ounce of his life into performing. He relates in the film that people don't understand how much of himself he gives each concert. It's this that makes you understand the band's legacy, that he wasn't just some idle genius. The band's formation is, again, presented as quietly and matter-of-factly as possible. It was how bare and personal his performance was, and we see it every time the band is drenched in sweat.

To tie this film with another film based on an English band, Joe Anderson plays the bass guitarist here with his native accent. In "Across the Universe," he's Max, a fast-talking, Ivy League student turned hippie, where his acting style is somewhere between Brad Pitt and Sam Rockwell. And he looks like Jared Leto (the actual guitarist of 30 Seconds to Mars [which brings up another point I think Julian and I talked about: why do all celebrity bands have space-themed names? Dog Star with Keanu Reeves, 30 Seconds to Mars, Phantom Planet with Jason Schwartzman, the Bacon Brothers...]).

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Here's to bronchitis!

Why are children's coughs so cute sounding?

Google aides sanity

So even if I tried my hardest to scrape my brain of every bit of info I could remember, I probably would never have been able to look up the old shows still lodged in my from childhood without Google. But because of I remember "cartoon" and "koala" and "archeologist," I found the show "Noozles."

Thanks also goes to Wikipedia. I have images in my head of a man with an acoustic guitar singing in a cozy meadow with puppets. That's a bit harder to Google, but since they have an enormous list of every show ever put on Nickelodeon, I found "Fred Penner's Place." He also sang "The Cat Came Back," which I LOVED as a kid.

Finally, my mom has always told me that my favorite cartoon had an animated dog named "Belle." Again, the list provided an answer, though I have no memories of the show. It's called "Belle and Sebastian," and it's an anime based on a French book. Here I thought all along Belle and Sebastian were the band members' real names.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

One baby to another says, I'm lucky to meet you

It started when I heard Dave Grohl interviewed on "Fresh Air" with Terry Gross. The conversation inevitably began with Foo Fighters and boring boring boring. Foo Fighters haven't been good for a long time, and you could really tell that Gross was not interested in the new record.

When she veered discussion towards Nirvana, that's when it suddenly became alive and intriguing. Grohl had very funny stories to tell, and it actually introduced some depth to Foo Fighters' songs, "Friend of a Friend" in particular (apparently written about Kurt Cobain when Grohl lived with him). Everything revolving around Nirvana had this veil of legacy and legend; Grohl felt like a relic of a bygone era, sharing his perspective and detailing what it was like in Seattle circa 1990 as a struggling, talented musician in a ragtag band.

This spawned a sudden curiosity for me. I've never really listened to Nirvana, aside from myriad singles and Unplugged recordings. I was surprised by how accessible "Nevermind" really is -- it's basically a pop album. As Cobain said, they kind of rip off the Pixies. Lots of the songs focus on loud guitar sections and quiet passages with bass and drums. But it all sounds so great. It's a terrific album.

Aside from this, Nirvana seems to be popping up more and more. The Unplugged session is coming out on DVD, and there's a new doc called About a Son, featuring interviews with Cobain and goes over his life.

On a related note, I just saw "Control," another film about a short-lived, high-rise frontman who killed himself. I'll write more about that tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Sounding stupid

Everytime, for the past week or so, that I've tried to update this blog, I end up not doing it. I deem whatever I was thinking no worth writing about or worry that were I to read it in the future, I would appear stupid. Today, I decided to go back and perform the now-typical masochistic act of reading old blog entries. Like really old. I went to read my Xanga.

At first it was painful, realizing how stupid you could sound. The more I think about it, though, the more I realize I was actually pretty typical. I liked bad music (still do), I wrote bad poetry that progressed to sorta bad poetry, and I had an ideological bent with religion and modern art. My reasons were always very extreme -- "Best movie ever!" -- and I was actually a pretty bad speller. I was pretty much an average, loud-mouth high schooler with plenty of recycled opinions and a few of my own. And among the many lists of bullshit, because prioritizing and reprioritizing your life or figuring out 5 things to do with your life is always amusing, one caught my eye: "I wish I could watch movies for a living."

It made me smile reading that. It's something I've been saying lately, and it wasn't part of remembering some mantra from adolescence. I thought it was something fairly recent, this resurgence of movie watching. It was nice to find that parallel, to see that this really is something that I have loved for a long time.

I really was out to find evidence that I'm more dumb than not, but my old posts did make me laugh a little bit and cringe a lot. But so do old pictures of hairdos. Kids like ranting and pontificating about big ideas. The most troubling thing I read was a post from when I was really depressed. It was just this monstrous rambling diatribe that was a big plea for help. Nothing about it sounded stupid.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Thursday, October 25, 2007

23

I'm now 23. Going to see "The Darjeeling Limited" tonight.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Best Halloween Ever

...and it was only the 20th of October. For a brief evening, L5P turned into something between Bourbon Street and Amsterdam, filtered through a dimension where zombies roamed the land. We became besotted in the streets, ate calzones with a ravenous frenzy, smashed pumpkins with capricious anger, all before 10:00 pm.


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Actually...

This would make a fantastic gift...


http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41HuZQ66hTL._AA240_.jpg

Greatest YouTube Clip Ever

http://www.stopsmilingonline.com/wordpress/?p=244

Also, my birthday is next Thursday. A subscription to Stop Smiling or Film Comment would be awesome.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Sorry.

I'm sorry, but...I've just got to write a little about Ann Coulter. She deserves no attention, and the day she gets assassinated, well, I'll attend the funeral in celebration. In case you don't know, she's a conservative ColUmNisT.

I've just spent the last hour watching clips on Youtube after typing in "Anne Coulter" (yes I spelled it wrong). It's like bad television, and actually is for me because I don't have cable. I'm sure hundreds of individuals, dozens of blogs, and other things have obsessively dedicated themselves to pointing out every single fucking stupid thing she says, every hypocrisy, lie, slander, etc. Here's one I've just made.

Here are some clips of Coulter on Hardball and Glenn Beck. The Beck piece references the Hardball piece, but watch both, especially the end of the Hardball clip.

Beck: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mnVMMpcP2gA

Hardball: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xYcUQiJ3sk

In an effort to avoid ever responding directly to criticism or making a point, she persistently asks for "the context" in which her statements were made, otherwise she cannot respond to them. She's always asking for the entire sentence or the sentence prior, as if that will then clue her in to the fucked up logic she applies to her universe.

I've never been a fan before, but god bless Al Franken. In this clip, he dutifully provides Coulter with the "context" of a quote she wholly misused in her book "Treason." It's nothing but utter goodness. Watch the end where Coulter gets incredibly racist, it's ridiculous.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHx0oLrGjKY

Chomp and Stomp 5k

So, while in the gym on Thursday, I run into Mark. I relay my usual dilemmas about being out of shape and so forth. He tells me about the Chomp and Stomp 5k coming up November 3rd.

I have missed Chomp and Stomp for the past two years because I've been working. It's basically a festival of great chili and beer. I have been looking for a 5k to train for. I think this is it, and it will be the first one I've ever done. As Mark said, I'll get to run and then celebrate with chili and beer (and a new long-sleeved shirt!). I am so excited.

I've begun training for this, but it's been kind of difficult. For some reason, I've got a permanent extra ten pounds stashed away (oh New Orleans...), so kick starting everything is a bit harder in many ways -- I'm running slower, I can feel how heavy I am, and now I've got a sore throat. That's unrelated to the weight gain, but it doesn't make breathing any easier. I was going to see "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford," because apparently Casey Affleck grew up this year, but I just feel like shit. When I think about taking MARTA to Atlantic Station and walking and seeing yuppies walking around and sitting in that theater watching a movie that's 2 hours and 40 minutes, the pleasantness of staying at home with Henry drinking tea with honey, eating nice warm food, and watching a horror movie suddenly sounds incredibly inviting.

So anyway, my training has begun. And it's going well, so far. The next week will look like this:

Friday, October 12th - Run 1.5 miles or better (I ran 2 miles)
Saturday - Run 2 miles (check)
Sunday - Run 20 minutes
Monday - Rest
Tuesday - Run 2.5 miles at the track
Wednesday - Run 25 minutes on the treadmill
Thursday - Rest
Friday - Run 2.5 miles
Saturday - Run 2 miles
Sunday - Run 25 minutes

These first two days have gone well. The runs feel very difficult at first, but by the end, they're ok. Essentially, the way I have it planned, I will increase my distance/time by a half mile/five minutes every week. The 5k is only three weeks away, so I know I need to really commit to the regimen I've laid out. Worst comes to worst, I run a slow 5k. Not a big deal. Here's the route I ran:


View Larger Map

It says it's .9 miles, so running both ways, it's about 2 miles (I run through the Path the first time through, and it's pretty curvy, I think it's can account for .2 miles). The weird thing is that my time for today was 17:09, which means I was running an 8:35 mile. That sounds a lot better than where I thought I would be at. It's hard to tell because if the Path doesn't add on that much mileage, and I really ran about 1.8 miles, which would put me at a 9:00 minute mile. Anyhow.

Other news, the Candler Park Fall Festival is happening right now. I wish had hundreds of more dollars so I could buy tons of artwork. There are so many talented people there! Plus, amazing food, Sam Adams, neighbors (Glen is a photographer! And his logo is the sweetest thing ever), and lots of Halloween-type art! We only went for an hour, but it was so inspiring.

My birthday is fast-approaching. It's weird. I'll be 23. Older than when Garry Kasparov become the world chess champion (he was 22). Slightly younger than when Orson Welles made Citizen Kane (25). Anyhow, I love birthdays. Mostly mine, though.

Finally, Josh and Berta are renting a cabin, and they're letting us city slickers tag along! I can't wait, I love excursions.

Friday, October 12, 2007

More Horror Films

So I don't feel like doing full-blown reviews, but I have been watching many horror-genre items to get into the spirit. It finally feels cold!! I'm so weird, I take this weather as an opportunity to not wear socks with my shoes.

"1408" - as has been said, this is a pretty damn good horror movie, but nowadays (as an old man once said) it doesn't take much. The film revolves around John Cusack as a washed-up author of books that delve into the world of haunted locales. He's an uber skeptic, and eventually makes his way to a spooky, made-up hotel in New York, the Dolphin. Samuel L. Jackson is the hotel's manager, and he's really only in one scene -- he tries to convince Cusack to not stay in room 1408. But Cusack only sees the caution as a ploy to this challenge; Jackson is obviously building suspense so it gets a good write-up in his next book. However, Jackson bluntly warns, "It's an evil fucking room."



And how! The strength of the film lies in the fact that it does more than just stick Cusack in a room for 90 minutes. Slowly built up are certain biographical elements that come into play as the room becomes an acid trip/lucid nightmare gone bad. Again, it's mainly Cusack here, and there isn't any specific ghost haunting the room. The room represents a spin cycle of bad memories made manifest and, really, it's the bad trip of bad trips. The mental confusion, disorientation, loss of equilibrium, and the conviction that Cusack ultimately reaches are utterly delusional and handled very well. The tone of the film permeates every scene -- I was actually jumping with every phone ring, every dog bark.

"Cemetery Man" - This film is very strange. It's in the style of Italian horror cinema (I think; I've only seen "Suspiria" and I hated it). It was made in 1994, though it could easily pass for late 80s, due to the cinematography, which is all washed and reminiscent of "Evil Dead." However, the plot's very interesting. Rupert Everett, looking nothing like Rupert Everett, works the graveyard shift. At a graveyard. His job -- rekill the undead, who rise from the graves every night (why he doesn't just shoot them in the head before they bury them, I don't know).



After a few questionable zombie killings, the line between the living and the dead blurs for Everett. He knows more dead people than living, as he puts it, and his course turns starkly existential. He no longer knows, nor cares, who he kills. What's more is that this is all rather funny. His disregard for the living and an out-of-place visit to the doctor add levity to what could be really depressing. The film's rich with metaphors and symbolism, though they escape me at the moment.

"Creepshow" - I remember this from my childhood. A quick rundown: In order, they are "Father's Day," "The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill," "Something to Tide You Over," "The Crate," and "They're Creeping Up On You."



"Father's Day" is very forgettable, except for watching Ed Harris 80s dance. "Jordy Verrill" stars Stephen King. It's dumb. It's very, very dumb. King guffaws and jaw-drops his way through acting, and luckily we get to see him kill himself. It's too campy.

"Tide," however, is nothing but brilliant. Leslie Nielson and Ted Danson give amazing performances. Really. Nielson shows what a gifted actor he is. Even at the end, he looks like he is shitting his pants with terror. And the story is genuinely creative and creepy. I remember loving short horror stories as a kid -- Alvin Schwartz's books in particular. "Tide" is really clever and simple, which is why it's so great.

"The Crate" also has a very good storyline. It's just as good as "Tide," but lacks Leslie Nielson (though Adrienne Barbeau is superbly annoying). And "Creeping" is just fucking gross.

"The Simpsons - Treehouse of Horror 1-4" - good lord, what can I say? These are the funniest Simpsons episodes out there.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

The Devil's Backbone


The Devil's Backbone (2001)

I don't have a whole lot to say about this film. It's by Guillermo del Toro, and it reminded me very much of “Pan's Labyrinth”. The film takes place during the Spanish Civil War and follows a young boy, Carlos, after he’s placed in an orphanage. Like “Pan’s Labyrinth,” del Toro centers the story on the children and the implications of this apparition.



It’s a bit more depressing, but not as sad as “Pan’s Labyrinth.” I think the latter provides a better perspective on children coping with the horrors of war. With “The Devil’s Backbone,” the story just isn’t terribly strong, and the tragedy is catalyzed by the war, but not caused by it directly.



The ghost, in terms of modern horror films and the prevalence of scary children/ghosts, is handled very well. And the child actors are really great. It’s kind of scary, but not really. Just creepy when Santi shows up. The final scenes are pretty frightening, however.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

OCTOBER/Extra Weird Sampler Review

So, it's October. Some people get Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) as we approach winter, but I do not. It's like someone is lacing everything I drink with prozac. I feel so alive during autumn, maybe it's the crisp air, the cool weather, the fact that it's my birthday, or that it's Halloween, the only season so interlinked with movies (except Christmas and I guess summer blockbusters).

And because I have so much energy this month, I've decided to write as many horror movie reviews as I can. It would be nice if this blog became a venue for me to write movie reviews, thus leading to a lucrative career. I think the problem is I like to watch movies, but I don't like to analyze the hell out of them. Why can't you just enjoy the movie? And with that, on to my first review.



Extra Weird Sampler - Something Weird Video (2003)
"Warning!! This program contains violence, nudity, gorillas, wrestlers, and mutant sheep!”

Thanks to my good friend Mike, our recent "Welcome to October!" party, complete with pumpkin beer and autumn dishes, was better than I could have imagined. He brought this DVD ("I found it in some cheap bin at Fry's") that boasts having "Over 100 of the Most Amazing Movies Ever Made!" Well, really, just the trailers from those movies. And at times, they aren't even trailers -- they're scenes from the film. And even then, you can tell that it's the scene they spent all of their money on. This is visible in one trailer/scene where a Jason-and-the-Argonauts-type Greek battles a large foam dragon. And another where a man kills a women, pounds on her bare butt with a meat tenderizer, eats her butt, and pokes out her eye.

The latter is also an example of the types of films featured here: sexploitation, gore fetishes, rape revenge films, rape with no revenge films, monster movies, nudist films, burlesque films, and too many more. Pardon me for not remembering the titles of certain films. When the majority of the films feature the word "Blood" in the title, it gets a little hazy.

The titles that do make a lasting impression (and I suppose this is the reason for their being done this way) feature the title in some ridiculous way. For instance, "Kiss Me Quick" never had the narrator say the title. He would lead up to it, and then a female character (can I really assume that the people in this films are fleshed out enough (no pun intended) to be characters?) sensuously says, "Kiss me quick," in a hushed whisper. And then there was "Color.......Me.......Blood........Red."

These trailers are the obvious source of parodic fodder utilized by the guest directors in "Grindhouse," though when I saw the fake trailers in "Grindhouse," I remember thinking how over-the-top they were. The trailers on this disc are the hilariously real, and they are that much more ridiculous. The most amazing thing is what these films had in common. Lots of mingling feet. And cats. Cats play a big role in many of these films. Oh yeah, rape too.

The DVD is only $5 on Amazon. You'll be amazed how numb you will be to breasts and rape scenes. We were only able to watch an hour.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Dear Rob Schneider,

STOP TAKING OUT FULL PAGE ADS, YOU DEFENSIVE PRICK.




http://defamer.com/hollywood/top/rob-schneider-takes-on-mel-gibson-to-plug-new-movie-in-variety-191949.php

http://defamer.com/hollywood/gossip/rob-schneider/by-request-rob-schneiders-attack-ad-032113.php

http://www.imdb.com/news/sb/2007-08-28/#3

Why the fuck does he think this is the best forum to respond? They started off, I guess, ok with the Mel Gibson thing. But now, he's taken out an ad in the Sydney Herald about a guy whom he borrowed a dvd from. Douche.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Ideas for blogs that I won't write about at length.

No more films about prostitution/drugs/pimps should ever be made ever again!

Atlanta Underground Film Festival? More like Atlanta Blunderground Phlegm Phestival. A slacker with a dvd player, a projector, and no concept of professionalism just duped so many filmmakers out of money.

I hate the phrase "I, for one, ... " so much it makes my ears bleed. It's such a stupid, fatheaded phrase that is like taking a shit on a pauper. "Excuuuuse me, but I, for one, will be boycotting said company's services." That is to be said with a snide voice while wearing a top hat and holding a cane. It's such a way of patronizing the reader. "I, as a paragon of high taste, refuse to do this or that." There is no reason to say "for one" except to take a moment and recognize yourself for doing something. What an asshole phrase.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Monday, July 30, 2007

Friday, July 27, 2007

Let's smoke this joint

http://www.cnn.com/2007/HEALTH/07/27/marijuana.psychosis.ap/index.html

Sounds like bollocks to me, especially this line, tucked away towards the end:

"Scientists cannot rule out that pre-existing conditions could have led to both marijuana use and later psychoses, he added."

Also, a few lists.

Movies in theaters to see:
-The Simpsons Movie
-Rescue Dawn
-Sunshine
-Paris je t'aime (maybe)

DVDs to buy:
-Zodiac
-Hot Fuzz (July 31st)
-Inland Empire (maybe)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Dresser -- I don't even know her!

Lately I've had ideological, let's say, problems. I'm at this point where I get to make decisions, like actively choosing to not shop at Wal-Mart or deciding to give money to the local Candler Park Market instead of Kroger -- this is where it gets difficult. But, Katie and I have been blessed (am I being spiritual??) with jobs at CNN that pay well, and we, as consumers, can make these decisions.

But other problems have been coming up, like did we really, absolutely need to get the dresser from Ikea when we could have definitely survived without one and given our money to a charity? And this is a guy who has never donated or volunteered ever. The dresser is great, and it was just a random purchase that got me thinking (I fully support our decision to purchase the dresser). I'm still pondering all of this. I might be losing a few dollars to the local store, but it makes me feel good to buy from there. And I've also decided to really start buying food from organic and health-oriented companies, because that also makes me feel like I'm spending my money while truly thinking about the repercussions, and not just buying some name brand.

Although it really is goddamned expensive.

On a side note, I'm drinking Sam Adams' Scotch Ale, which is very strange and dark, but really great.

I've started reading A Spot of Bother by Mark Haddon, the man who wrote one of the few books I've read in the past five years A Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. This new books is quite wonderful, his nuance and details make me want to read a lot more. I have put on (perhaps permanent) hiatus M: The Man Who Became Caravaggio by Peter Robb, because, while it's all very interesting, it is purely academic, and there is too much damn information about Rome and hooligans and stuff. It's very detailed, but not in a good way. I get it, Rome was a hell hole. What about the thing where Caravaggio died in a bar fight? Oh wait, that's 500 pages of tiny type down the road.

There's a great show on some cable channel called "Live at Abbey Road" that brings in a wide array of artists to record some of their songs. Their picks are strange, from thoughtless pop to Dave Matthews to Muse to Massive Attack. I downloaded the Massive Attack episode (the only one I could find) and I think I gave them a listen in the past, but not much, and they are really great. They're so focused on creating these grooves, it's fun to watch.

Finally, "Flight of the Conchords" is rocking my world right now. Download all six episodes if you can, they are fantastic. Looks like me and Jules will have to keep our day jobs and hone Big Dick and Concert Pianist until it's different enough.

Friday, July 6, 2007

escalator tensions

First of all, check out how poorly written this AP article is, I mean Jesus! It's bad.

Today, I got off of MARTA at CNN Center and headed towards the escalators. There’s a set of four: the two left running down, the third dead, and the fourth running up.

On the fourth escalator is a group of people, and two of them are walking down the escalator, ala Christopher Walken in the “Weapon of Choice” video, except instead of something fairly entertaining, imagine the most annoying fucking thing you’ve ever seen.

These two kids, they have a friend who is attempting to take their picture. They are completely blocking off the escalator. The people walking in front of me stop at the escalator, allowing them to take their picture.

I figure somebody’s gotta put their foot down. I mean, you fucking idiots, it’s a STILL PICTURE. The camera won’t be able to tell if you’re moving up or down or not at all! Get in the dead escalator!

I walk up to the two kids, still walking against the escalator. They don’t move. I mumble, “Excuse me.” They don’t move. So I push my way past these great arguments for misanthropy and FLASH! The kid finally took the picture.

So now, this gruff asshole, interrupting the playful fun of some dumb tourists, is forever embedded into the same pixels as these guys. I wonder if they deleted the picture.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Blah and Order

Ripped from the headlines!!

On the next episode of Blah and Order, we take an actual news event, put our own little excessive spin on it, and present it to you as entertainment! Like fine wine and steak, we pair real events that were interesting enough in the first place with our own pedestrian brand of drama, and voila! An episode! Why come up with a unique story when USA Today is full of 'em?

Next week's episode: Michael "Pooter" Flibby is given a presidential pardon by, guess who, his bosom buddy, the Commander in Chief! But that's not all. POTUS, it turns out, is the mastermind behind the country's worst attack, 8/11, which is named after the date on which the attacks occurred!

Stay tuned....

Monday, July 2, 2007

My predilection for art films has betrayed me.

I was sitting alone in my place with my dog, whom I will refer to as Baby BarFight until he stops being a toddler. Katie and her friends had gone off into the rainy night, so I sat there, craving cable and wanting munchies. I dashed to the local convenience store, which I love having. Nothing establishes the fact that you are in a neighborhood better than a locally owned mart. And the quality of the mart can only be indicative of your neighborhood; to sum it up, they both kick ass.

Armed with Sweet Maui Onion Kettle Chips (omg), Paul Newman popcorn, Coca Cola, and a giant mom-and-pop cookie, I drove home only to realize that I don't own many good "mindless" movies. The few that I do own I've seen so many times that I hate them. I have over 200 DVDs, and I couldn't figure out what to watch. I settled on The Matrix, which would be embarassing if I actually liked it. And really, it's not that bad. It buys completely into the whole sexy-techno-tech-geek-future-sleek-gothic-punk-cyber-leather-orgy genre. It's really well made, well written, but luckily it's not deep at all. For a high-schooler, perhaps. But really, Alice in Wonderland? Dreams vs. reality? It's perfectly mindless in that its ideas are like rocks skipped across the surface of your brain.

Anyway, I made it about an hour into it, switched it over to Christopher Nolan's remake of Insomnia. I always thought it was a good effort, and some things stood out to me.

Quick tangent: I forgot to mention that things also stuck out for me during The Matrix, such as Neo talking to himself as he's about to climb out the window at the beginning. He's just talking to himself about the possibility of being arrested, thinking about what he could've done. It was interesting, I liked it.

Back to Insomnia, the whole plot about Internal Affairs was a lot more pronounced this time, maybe because I've already seen it. Also, the fact that Pacino is really a cop who has completely lost his moral footing has never been so clear. Knowing that he planted evidence, that he would withhold information from the other detectives to just kind of gung-ho his way to the murderer, he just comes off like such a stubborn, bad cop more than a truly good cop.

Anyway, while wtching these movies, I realized that I wish I invested more money into even more mindless movies, like Ocean's 11, Die Hard, Die Hard with a Vengeance, and Under Siege 2: Dark Territory. These movies are great, and if they were on TV I would have watched them. But alas I have chosen the higher brow.

A few life things:

I got a job at CNN with the department I interned at. Yay! Yesterday, Ryan, Tera, Katie, and I went bowling, which was awesome, but it seemed really short, even though we were there for three hours. I think free time seems shorter because I have very little of it.

My family and I and Katie are going to Florida in mid-July, which I'm very much looking forward to. I haven't been to the beach in like 7 years, so it should be fun. Plus, I'm looking forward to getting a tan...on my chest. It's very white.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

IHNO

I have, and I think we all do at points, the bad habit of having an opinion when I, in fact, have none. I got caught last week when somebody asked me if I kept up with baseball. I couldn’t just say, “No,” which would be completely honest. I tried to fake my way through it, stumbling about liking the Braves when I was younger and such. The truth is I have a really deep love of baseball that exclusively stems from childhood, but if you asked me if Chipper was doing well this season, I honestly couldn’t tell you if he was still on the roster or not. But I overhead that he is.

There’s an internet acronym IMHO: In My Humble/Honest Opinion. I’ve never had any use for this masturbatory, extraneous phrase. Everything I say is my opinion, unless otherwise noted as being someone else’s; I always give credit. Why do I need to say IMHO, … it’s useless. The internet might be a better place if we started using IHNO: I Have No Opinion. And I think people would appreciate my fresh look on opinions (to steal lyrics from Nada Surf) if I just told them that on the topic their discussing, I have no opinion. So that’s that, today there is a new piece of internet lingo, IHNO. Write about it, unless UHNO.

Check out Katie’s blog for a great picture of our place. It looks like she took it out of a magazine, but she didn’t.

I just ordered an 18-month Moleskine planner (how in the hell is that pronounced anyway? I say Mole-Skyne.) . I’m very excited, I have a small notebook of there’s, but its pages are blank. I am meaning to fill them with creative thoughts for certain scripts and television shows. Hopefully, they will be more interesting than the above-the-fold part of this blog.

Also, I’m looking into getting a new Eagle Creek bag from their website. The Local Messenger is really big and badass, and it comes in red. I’ve been looking to get a red bag that’s also manly. The multiple-views pictures shows a man with the bag – a good sign.

My favorite music right now is between Smashing Pumpkins’ Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, any of The Strokes’ albums, and Wolf Parade. Wolf Parade is so incredible, I love that album, what’s it called?

If I could take the fire out from the wire/I’d share a life and you’d share a life.

PS: If there are any mistakes, please catch them and hand them to me, I wrote this in Word quickly.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Agreed.

I've never agreed with a Pitchfork review so much until now (except whatever he says about "Sick, Sick, Sick"), because when he describes missing Nick Oliveri and listening to older albums, that's exactly what I've been doing. Weird.

I will update soon with all the new additions to my life.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

iBlog

According to this quiz on the happenin' new "App" on Facebook called iLike, I don't know the difference between the following bands:

My Chemical Romance
The Used
Fall Out Boy
All-American Rejects
Yellowcard
Simple Plan
The Starting Line
Story of the Year

and I don't care.

Also, it's sick that some of the people I know have points in the 7 and 8 thousands. The questions give you 10 points at a time! That's seven-hundred correctly answered answers!

I was standing around at work, what they call "Hosting," trying in vain to give assholes catalogs, when it dawned on me. I was just zoning out, thinking about things for the cartoon Jules and I are working on, and when somebody would come up, it would sap me of every creative juice that I had the moment before. Talking to people, specifically strangers, even more specifically the lower grade of humans known as customers, is quite possibly the most uncreative act. It requires recitation ("Hello, how are you doing?"), recall ("Let's see, that's over in Closet"), and scripted actions ("Let's go over there" waddle waddle waddle).

That's not to say that talking to people itself is uncreative. I love collaborating; in fact, I'm convinced that the best work comes from working directly with somebody. Although, I did try an experiment yesterday. Our pilot episode is set in a mall, so I figured, why not go to the mall for some inspiration? And while it did provide some atmosphere and some non sequitur jokes, it was mostly useful to just go and sit and be alone and be forced to think and work.

It's strange, because writing doesn't come to me naturally (except for here), that I have no real instincts for coming up with something funny or clever, it's an awkward medium. What works written, but what also works visually and when spoken? It truly is a shot in the dark when I write something down, because comedy needs an audience, and if you don't have that partner there to laugh, then what the hell?

Also, as you're building these characters, how do you choose the precise words to define them? There's an infinite number of nuances to write in and directions to go, but I think that at that point, it's just my mind unable to pin the concept of fiction down.

-------------------------
The new Queens of the Stone Age album is out today. Maybe I'll drive and go get it. Also, the Wilco concert is next Tuesday, not today as my lovely fiancee had previously thought. What to do instead?

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Sick, Sick, Sick

Alright, I think I've written about the taste I have, and I think bad taste is something all of us have, unless we have good defenses. I'm bad at arguing and can't defend my taste, so I just have to take the hit. In terms of music, I worry that I have the worst of taste at times, and it was only recently certified as genetic or a product of nurturing when my dad said that he finds all of the songs he loves in iTunes under the "Pop" section.

In any case, I'm glad when one of the bands I listen to is deemed cool, beit by hipsters in general, a menagerie of bumper stickers ranking it with other equally acceptable bands on the rear of a car, or by personal anecdote of someone I know has fairly good taste all the time. Queens of the Stone Age is one of these bands. And in this case, fuck it, I do not need any of these social instances to confirm just how awesome QOTSA is. Yes, they have an acronym.

Josh Homme, the lead singer, has been around forever, starting with Kyuss and building QOTSA from the ground up, I think he's the only remaining original member. Maybe the other guitarist is as well. In any case, Josh Homme is a bona fide badass, he dances like Elvis on stage, constantly calls out dumbass assholes who are ruining his shows, and he's friends with every other badass on the planet. Dave Grohl, Mastodon, ZZ Top. The list goes on.

Anyhow, I downloaded their new album (and I will purchase it, because it's awesome), and I just saw the new video for their new single "Sick, Sick, Sick." The track's really different, pretty dark for QOTSA. And this is only matched by the music video. This video is not innovative like Michel Gondry or Chris Cunningham, it's not particularly clever, it's just a damn good music video in that in captures the attitude and mood of the song so spot-on. That's what they should do, right?

The video features a woman very subtly eating the members of the band. The clips of her eating are barbaric and sexual and disgusting. I'm not sure what the lyrics to the song are, but I have a clear idea after watching the video. Plus, the band is playing in some sort of fiery, vaginal cavity. It's fucking great.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Magazine clips

Maybe I'm just dumb, maybe it's a girl thing, but whenever I open a girl's magazine to the index at the front, looking for a certain interview or tips on pleasing my man, I am so overwhelmed by how poorly the index is put together. I can't find anything! I was just looking for this interview with Zooey Deschanel in Jane, and for the life of me I cannot find any sort of indication as to what page the interview is on. I finally flipped to it, realizing these magazines tend to be indexed by their advertisements, kinda like tabs in a pimped out dictionary. Ah yes, the interviews are under Calvin Klein.

Very strange evening last night. Our neighbor fell out of his wheelchair, drunk apparently. Had to carry him to his bed, his pants fell off. Awwwwkward.

Katie and I, aka JKLOL, wrote a song to our friend Jules, aka DJ Jocular, entitled "Ode to Jules." You can download it here: Ode to Jules

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Katie is shooting daggers at her new screen.

Katie got a job at CNN! I'm still unemployed (in my field). Here's to being a househusband!

The end.

PS This is so short because I'm hogging KT's laptop. I'm frced 2 wrt n shrthnd. Time iz uv da essence. TTFN.

PSS I think I will live at Caribou with her laptop while she works 40 hours a week. Sigh, I mean Yay!, I mean sighhhhhh. :0

Sunday, May 13, 2007

No Country for Old Men....or is it?!?

So, I am finally, completely, one-hundred-percent THROUGH. Georgia State just has to mail me my sheep skin, and that's that, Arafat. I am more thrilled to be done with GSU than I am proud that my college career is over. That's pretty obvious though, considering GSU has not prepared me in any way whatsoever for the real world. Though the drinking involved would surely make me prepared for The Real World or whichever permutation currently exists.

I checked out this morning with nothing interesting to report back. I, thus, got to work about an hour and a half early, which is awlays welcome, so I stopped into Caribou Coffee to read the new book I'd recently acquired. Yes, it actually is a book featuring text exclusively, not a graphic novel with pictures. I LOVE graphic novels, and I thoroughly enjoy the ones of I read (in fact, the past five books I've read were graphic novels: David Boring, Torso, Jinx, Blankets, and Black Hole), but I feel like I'm using them to put off reading a book with words again. What book am I reading? Well, that's kinda complicated.

While we were in Sylva, we stopped at this tiny bookstore that we had been to back in September. It was basically a bunch of old library books someone had donated or something at some point in history, and now they were here. I browsed casually, slightly uninterested because the books were both old and unfamiliar. However, a title popped into my field of vision: "No Country for Old Men."

The title clicked; I recognized the title as being the book the Coen brothers are currently adapting into a film. I grabbed it off the shelf and flipped open the cover. $1.50 was scribbled in pencil above the library card. A buck fifty! I can afford that, I thought to myself. And what's more, I actually had the cash on me.

I bought the book, and I sat down and the read the prologue. Hm, ok, it's about a poet named Henry Raven. He's on a ship. And he's been murdered, but it's been made to look like a suicide. And...Nazis? Hm, if I recall, the publicity stills from the Coens' new film feature Tommy Lee Jones....in the desert. And Javier Badem or some name or other is a ruthless murderer. Is this the same book? I continued reading.

The main character (so far) is a man writing a biography on the deceased poet. I flipped to the dust cover, which I had avoided wanting to go into the book and film fresh (well, the film not so much, seeing as how I was reading the book, or so I thought). It's a thriller. Really? This picture just isn't adding up. The Coens' desert movie with Tommy Lee Jones is a thriller about a writer researching a dead poet?

I go into work and excitedly tell Kyle and Becca that I'm reading a book with words. "What book?" "No Country for Old Men." Kyle nods, "Oh, cool. Is that the Cormac McCarthy book the Coen brothers are doing?"

What? My book is written by Alan Schwartz. Not to be confused with Alvin Schwartz, author of the Scary Stories series.

Anyhow, I'm still confused. I'm about to research the mystery of how two books have the exact same title. I'm not totally upset that I'm reading the wrong book. Schwartz' tome is actually quite good! It's getting my mind back into the world of prose and language, and he is pretty adept at writing. Did I accidentally discover a gem?

UPDATE: Not as interesting as I thought. Both are named after the same line in a Yeats' poem "Sailing to Byzantium." Schwartz quotes Yeats on the page before the prologue. Hm. What the hell. It's actually sad, because no one has talked about this book at all, and it says on the flap that Schwartz is working on his second book, but there's no information about it. The main character is struggling with getting his first book published. Sad that he becomes the botched debut.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Tyra Banks is a Hero (in progress)

INT. Tyra Banks' Studio

CAMERA CRANES DOWN

TITLE: The Tyra Banks Show

The audience's applause fades.

Tyra stares into the camera, unblinking, serious.

TYRA
(blinking rapidly)
Please, this is no time for
applause. There is an epidemic
taking the lives of the beautiful,
young women in this nation. Women
who want nothing more than to
selflessly let their thin figures grace
movie screens and magazine covers,
figures they have obsessively
refined through legitimate methods
of dieting and exercising. There
is an epidemic murdering these
women, preying on their naivete.
That epidemic is...the
CASTING COUCH.

The camera zooms in on blood-red couch, smoke issuing from the cushions. Moody lighting drapes the couch.

Tyra stands and walks in front of a large video screen. The screen displays images corresponding with Tyra's descriptions.

TYRA
Many of you might remember
reading that story about Terri
Hollenbachi, the sweet, 19-year-
old girl from Memphis with a
dream. She stepped off a bus
in Hollywood with a dream to
better the lives of others by
being an actress. But her looks
didn't have any time to get
her anywhere in life. She
answered an ad in the paper
looking for hot women to star
in a new film with Tom Cruise.
And she ended up dead.

The lights in the studio dim. The audience's silence is deafening.

TYRA
(cont'd)
Why? Because a man pretended
to be a movie director and lured
her to his lair, where he chopped
her into tiny pieces. When I read
about young Terri, I sprang into
action. I called Topanga, and we
set up a fake casting call to
catch unsuspecting women trying
to sleep their way to the top.
Let's watch.


The camera zooms into the video screen.

INT. FAKE CASTING ROOM

The fast-motion video shows the room being set up rapidly.

TYRA (V.O.)
Our crew set up a fake casting
call room, complete with fake
casting director and fake
movie director.

Arrows appear onscreen indicating "Fake" personnel.

TYRA (V.O.)
Our fake movie director, Milo,
has the sexy allure of a
fake hitman, a perfect candidate
for our movie director. With his
acting abilities, these women
will never think he's really
a killer.

The video shows the women lining up outside the casting room.



Sunday, May 6, 2007

Quatro y Cinco de Mayo

Now, you might not think that the Great Smokey Mountains are a place to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, but then you would be terribly incorrect. Thanks to Dr. Modugno, we had a beautiful place to stay for the weekend in the quiet town of Sylva, North Carolina.

And we did all the things one is supposed to do on Cinco de Mayo, like eat blueberry cream pie ice cream and play True Colors (apparently, I'm the one most likely to pile my plate at a buffet). And purchase Kudzu jelly. And shoot a crossbow, and ultimately lose two of the bolts (sorry Geoff). And finally, eat so much taco food stuffs that your belly bursts at the seams. And then eat ice cream and watch Planet Earth. What a great fucking weekend.

Another accomplishment this weekend: I finally finished Black Hole. It left me incredibly depressed, but maybe it's just because the material is so dark, as Geoff noted. There are so many stark landscapes presented in the book, ethereal planes filled with garbage and disease and mutations. It's such a bleak tale.

And we saw some pugs at the farmer's market that has me convinced that Katie and I need to own a pug. Or two.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Transition (Plan A)

After sneaking a peek at my schedule the week after next, I'm worried. I won't be making nearly enough hours to really get by, which I calculated with some trusty arithmetic. However, the ensuing anxiety was quickly quelled by the idea of getting a job somewhere in my new neighborhood. By the way, here's where that is:


(many thanks to this Blogger for his tutorial on getting that map to embed...it was quite difficult)

I would absolutely love to be able to work within walking distance of my new place. The fact that I would not have to ride MARTA (which has taken who knows how many hours from my life from being slow) and that I would get to know the neighborhood and its inhabitants better is such an awesome notion. Even if I weren't earning that much per hour, I just want to work a lot this summer. It would be a definite plus to make money so close to home. I could walk home to have lunch, wouldn't get in that late, wouldn't have to wait on the Lindbergh train then the Airport train. That idea alone would be sweet.

However, this talk is really just Plan B to my Plan A (hence the title sounding like a song title off of Radiohead's Hail to the Thief). I had an interview at Cartoon Network last week, and I'm just hoping so badly that I get it. The interview went fairly well, despite the fact that I was soaked from rain and very sweaty. To have that foot in the door, I can't even express it.

Alright, I really have to get cleaning. And Katie's back from her exam! Now I have to go.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Headlines

I think the Eats, Shoots, and Leaves author can be kinda crazy, but I guess he/she has a point.



I didn't realize REM's video for Losing My Religion was so complex in its visual sources.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Rich people are stupid.

So you've probably seen these commercials by now where "Kate," the young professional, walks to her car, the last one in an empty parking lot. Her luxury car has a feature that shows if there is the heartbeat of a rapist/killer/mugger/magician/teleporter hiding inside of her car. She sees that, indeed, blood pumps through the veins of an unseen attacker inside of her luxurious automobile. She stops, spins around, and begins to run away. Thank god for the heartbeat detector – her car really cares about her safety!

Wait. Why doesn’t the car company just make a feature that makes it impossible for some stranger to slip inside?!?! What are car alarms for, again? Seriously, unless we’re talking about the ghost in Ghostbusters that gets into the taxi cab through the tail pipe, what’s the point of this useless, extraneous feature that really creates a false sense of safety? “Phew! The heartbeat sensor isn’t going off. There’s no way some whacko won’t be waiting, hiding on the outside of my car.”

And really, if you’re making enough money to purchase this car with such frivolous features, you probably work some place with security, and that means secure escorts. Kate, don’t be stupid. Have the guard walk you to your car. He’s got a gun (probably, or at least a baton or something like pepper spray. Get over the fact that you can’t look him in the eye because he’s making 1/10 of your salary and have him walk you out if you’re so paranoid about people lurking your car. And invest in a car alarm that doesn’t let people hide in your backseat under a blanket. In fact, get all the blankets out of your car, and start locking your doors. And close the moon roof. You’re just looking for trouble at this point.)

Monday, April 23, 2007

Helen Hunt

Whatever happened to her?

Job Hunt

House hunting, job hunting...At least the house hunt was quick, painless, and successful. With the job hunt, however:




My job hunt is exacerbated by the fact that I currently have the most disheartening and fruitless of internships. Thankfully, it's almost over! I should be careful, they like to fire people for this kind of thing, but my experience here is such that I would never want to step foot in this building ever again. Except, perhaps, to grab some delicious Chinese food or a milkshake. Or unless they hire me (ie, a job here would beat waiting tables...I guess).

In other news, I can't wait to move into the new place Katie and I got in Candler Park!!! I feel that will give me enough inspiration to work independently and prolifically. I really can't wait. I love it and I'm in love.

Also, Nick has me racking my brain for ideas for episodes of The Office. I might have one, but we'll see.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Diner Scenes

I think if you look throughout the history of film, diner scenes often come up. Some are quiet and low-key, e.g. Sydney(1996), and that is rare. That scene offers both expository information, as well as extensive character development. It's a scene that might actually take place in a diner, with the possible exception of the premise leading up to the scene.

For the most part, diner scenes are used for the moment in which the heads of the other patrons pivot quickly to gaze and gawk at our protagonist couple. Pulp Fiction (1994) and obviously When Harry Met Sally...(1989) have these moments, but there's an array of others that you can probably better remember on your own than I could recollect and describe here.

From this, I gather that the scenes in movies set in diners are the most cinematic of stories taking place in that diner right then and there. No other couples in this diner are causing heads to spin. Notice that these diners are always Waffle House type establishments, complete with a bar and all-night hours. They are rarely restaurants--this requires reservations, sometimes fancy dress, and, most importantly, that you show up at a humanly hour. The adventures of our characters have no place for daylight. See Thief (1981) or Swingers (1996) for examples.

In short, diner scenes almost exclusively so that the characters in a film can make a big scene or embarrass themselves. Why is that? I do not find myself in a diner that often. Maybe I'm not very cinematic.

In other news:

Turtles are adorable, when not mutated ninjas and just sex pots
. (PUN!)

People have too much/many: time, cats, pictures of cats.

Monday, April 16, 2007

House Hunt

Today's been a loopy one. Riding on the train this morning, all those unprepared with no poles to grip, the train would accelerate forward, and we'd do a one-step-back move in our unscripted dance number. Not entirely unlike that animated Paula Abdul video. You know the one, with the wolf.

My mind is shrouded with a fog cloud, 15% chance of precipitation. I keep stepping into the neighborhoods Katie and I have visited during this whirlwind weekend. I step through the front door, greet the hipster neighbor, calm down the extremely excitable, hyper pug Henry, and plop down on our soft couch. The air outside smells nice, so we go for a walk. Oh, it's so lovely. We're friends with the owners of the local pub, so when we stop in with our pug, he looks at us with his ugly mug and says, Have a pint, but mind the pipsqueak. His name's Harry, I'll say. Or maybe it's Pickle or Dizzy.

Caffeine is a drug I enjoy. It can imbue one with the same effects as other drugs -- euphoria, clarity, hyperactivity, diarrhea. It's great when on the edge of sleep. You can find a pusher on every corner.

The office is busy, shooters abound on V. Tech campus. Very sad day.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Brought to you by the Letter &

Sleep.

I need sleep. My biggest (perhaps only?) flaw is that I fall asleep easily. My early years of college featured many nights of midnight-oil burning. Watch Conan. Watch Adult Swim...the second time it comes on. Imaginations were fueled, life was lazy and swell. I never had this problem.

Now I work and learn and intern. And it sucks. I'm pretty exhausted by the end of most days, but it's odd. I'll fall asleep hanging out with friends, but when I'm by myself, I can vegetate in front of this thing for many extra hours. I think it's the intense concentration; with friends, I'm so very relaxed that I guess I slip into slumber.

Plus, getting up at 4:30 am, when I can hear people across the hall still playing Halo, this also sucks. Some mornings are better than others, like this morning I was able to wake up, convince myself to go to work, take a shower, drink tea, make a sausage, egg Mcmuffin. That's ok, but knowing the world is sleeping wears on one's psyche. I cannot wait for this somnambulistic lifestyle to end.

And onto "and." Basically, my argument is that "word and word" titles for artistic endeavours -- albums, movies, songs -- are pretty accurate indicators of their suckiness. Except Coffee and Cigarettes (2003) or Cigarettes and Coffee (1993). But, for instance, Muse. "Black Holes and Revelations." What a terrible sounding name. Plus, that album is such a disappointment for the band. Exhibit A. "Between Angels and Insects" by Papa Roach and Angels and Airwaves, some shit started by Mark (?) of Blink 182. These names are awful, and the and=crap phenomenon is proven simply by association with these musical institutions. Exhibit B, although an easy target.

And then there's Chutes and Ladders. Did anyone actually have fun with that? Yeah, I did too. My argument has no real merit.

Or does it?!?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Grown-Up Xanga

Xanga had an interesting tenure over the course of my high school and college careers. Now I'm over it. It basically served as an outlet for boyish needs and bad taste. Now I have manish needs and exquisite bad taste. I still have to see Bad Taste (1987).

Now, I'm using Blogger. It's like Ikea, while Xanga, as my friend John Bird always put it (rather astutely, in retrospect), is the Wal-Mart of the internet. Blogger is sleek and round, stylish and modern. Wait, I think John was talking about MySpace. In any case...

I'm excited to have a new blog. It makes sense, as my life is about to change in the next month. Or rather, it's not going to change, but it's going to become what it should already be, but things like school and interning are getting in the way.

My next post will address how the word "And" tends to be a good indicator of the artistic merits of a work. For instance, Rush's upcoming album is entitled "Snakes and Arrows." I was saddened to see this. Rush is also the #1 guilty pleasure. I think that's incorrect, as people who enjoy Rush do not feel guilty and people who would only casually enjoy Rush to the point of guilt would probably not find it pleasurable.