Monday, December 31, 2007

The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Just when I thought I'd received all my Christmas gifts, I opened the mailbox today to find one last thoughtful gift from the King County District Court - a jury summons. The notice tells me that it is a privilege to serve jury duty, so I will have to make sure to thank everyone down at the courthouse for such a wonderful opportunity. But wait, there's more! In addition to this privilege, I will receive the princely sum of $10 a day! What an honor.

I haven't gotten a summons in many years now, so I guess I've been dodging this bullet for a while. I was really getting annoyed with the repeated summons I received in my late teens and early 20's, so I guess I've earned a couple years off. Now I'm just hoping I get a high profile case so that I can land a book deal when it's all over.

NFL Playoff Predictions

It's that time of year again for me to make my playoff predictions, although they are less predictions than they are advanced knowledge of events that have yet to come to pass.

In the wild card weekend, the Seahawks will obviously win big over the Redskins. The offense will be too much for the Redskins to handle, and the defense will get a lot of pressure on Todd Collins and force some turnovers. In the other NFC game, the Giants will knock off the Buccaneers, and in the AFC Jacksonville will walk all over Pittsburgh and San Diego will beat Tennessee.

In the next round, I the Seahawks will travel to Green Bay enjoy some cold weather, beat the Packers, and possibly kill Brett Favre, although maybe they will only end his career. Either way, you heard it here first - the last game of Favre's career will be a loss to Seattle. The Giants will travel to Dallas where they will be handily beaten by the Cowboys. Over in the AFC, the Jaguars will lose to the mighty Patriots, and the Colts will take down the Chargers. This loss will result in Norv Turner losing his job.

On to the conference championships where Seattle will stun the Dallas crowd. It will be another heartbreaking loss for the Cowboys, and once again Tony Romo will cry on national TV. The Colts will blow a late lead to the Patriots and after the game Peyton Manning will blame the loss on a poor effort by the defense and a lack of protection from his offensive line.

This brings us to the Superbowl. The hype surrounding the Patriots will be nauseating, and Tom Brady will be crowned king of Boston. He will then impregnate half the women in Boston during the week leading up to the big game, and all of that exertion will leave him at less than 100% on gameday. The stage will then be set for the greatest Seahawks victory of all time - or at least until the Superbowl next year. The loss will cause a wave of mass suicides in Boston, and Ben Afflek will produce and star in a box office bomb full of conspiracy theories regarding who threw the game, which refs were paid off, which spies stole the Patriots playbook and game plan, etc. Meanwhile, back in Seattle, a parade will be hastily thrown together to honor the triumphant Seahawks, and it will rain. Employees all around the area will be given the day off to celebrate. People in my company will be given a "jeans day" to celebrate. It will be glorious.

So there you have it. That is exactly how things will play out. There is no point in even questioning it. Just try to act surprised when it happens.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Circuit City Made The List

The enemies list that is. I received a copy of the Simpsons Movie for Christmas that I knew was from Circuit City since there was a sticker on the cover touting the exclusive Circuit City content contained within. Well, I was given the full screen addition and thought that exchanging it for the wide screen edition would be a pretty easy task. It turns out I was mistaken. I can't believe I'm the first person to ever try to exchange something shortly after Christmas without a receipt, but it sure seemed that way. To the best of my recollection, the conversation I had with the young girl behind the counter went like this:

Me: I'd like to exchange this for the wide screen version of the same movie.
Her: Do you have a receipt?
Me: No
Her: Do you know the phone number of the person that gave it to you?
Me: Yes
after a few seconds of typing it into the computer...
Her: Ok, do you know what day they purchased it?
Me: No
some more typing...
Her: Do you know if they paid cash for it?
Me: I have absolutely no idea.
Her: Hmm ... I'm not finding it here, let me go talk to my manager.
At this point she disappeared in the back for a couple minutes. When she came back she said: Ok, we can exchange that, just go over and get the one you want and bring it back here. Do you know where they are?
Me: (pointing) I assume right over there in the DVD section.
Her: Yes
I returned shortly with the wide screen version and...
Her: Can I have your phone number in case something happens with this one and you need to bring it back?
One fake phone number and some more typing later, I did manage to exchange one unopened copy of the DVD for another copy of the same title. What I expected to take 2 minutes tops ended up taking at least 10 minutes. And for giving me so much hassle for what I consider to be a very simple and reasonable request, they have made my enemies list. I advise all of you to discontinue shopping there, and if you know anyone that works there or just happen to bump in to an employee, heap scorn and derision upon them, because otherwise they won't learn nothin.

Streetcorner Evangelist

While I was in downtown Seattle today, I saw a group of people on the street corner holding up a pretty sizable sign proclaiming something about God (I honestly didn't read it closely enough to remember the details anymore) and shouting as loud as possible at everyone walking or driving by to repent. Now I'm a Christian myself, but even I had to fight the urge to go over and tell them to shut the f*#@ up. And I'm a little surprised that they weren't assaulted, although to be fair, I wasn't in sight of them for long and they may well have been later on. Regardless, I am always shocked to find that there are still people who think that belligerent yelling and sign waving is an effective means of persuasion. And yet I see it all the time when there is an election coming up. Is it just me that takes offense at such annoying tactics? Does this actually work on some people? It has the exact opposite of it's intended effect on me.

And maybe it was because of this that I got home and had the urge to listen to Bleed The Freak. So here you go - enjoy Layne Staley in all his drugged out glory.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

16-0

The Patriots survived one final scare to finish the regular season undefeated. Anybody that knows me should know that I have no love for the Patriots, and that I loathe Tom Brady and despise anyone from Boston, but I have to give credit where credit is due. This team is truly amazing. The 1985 Bears are the most dominant team I've seen in my lifetime, but the 2007 Patriots are damn close. I'm reluctant to say that they are more dominant than the Bears because I still feel that they can (and will) be beaten. The Seahawks Superbowl victory will be that much more glorious because of this.

And the other thing that this season has proven to me is that Randy Moss is still one of, if not the most dominant WR's of all time when he's not slacking off. It's just a shame for him that those 2 years of half assed football he played in Oakland will forever tarnish his image.

Unfortunately, as hard as I tried, it turns out I'm unable to write a post about the Patriots without going negative, but I held off as long as I could. I hope that sooner or later someone will hit that jackass Tom Brady hard enough to render him incapable of knocking up any more women and dumping them while they are pregnant. Kudos to Ken Levine for suggesting that Bridget Moynihan name her son Peyton out of spite. I had a good hard belly laugh over that one.

Finally, behold the new poll! I know I've been lazy and haven't put one up in a while, but be sure to vote early and often.

**Update**
I almost forgot - Pat, jumping on the Patriots bandwagon because they are sometimes called the "Pats" is one of the stupidest reasons for liking a team that I've ever heard, knock it off. I'm not saying that you are stupid, I'm just saying that ... I didn't plan far enough ahead to think of an end to that sentence, so I guess I really am saying you're stupid. So get off the damn bandwagon.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Merry Belated Christmas


I've been too busy this week to do much of anything, so until I get around to downloading my Christmas pictures, enjoy this photo from my Aunt and Uncle's house. This was actually taken December 1st, but it's very Christmasy none the less. And I like it a lot.

Almost Over

Despite the fact that I had a half day on Monday and a whole day off on Tuesday, this has just felt like the longest, most boring week in the history of civilization. At this point I'm just trying to wait out the last 20 agonizing minutes, and with any luck, not get any actual work done.

At least next week shouldn't be as bad. There should be less running around to do when I'm not at work, and more sleeping in, football watching, and video game playing. I've got to get out of here....

Monday, December 24, 2007

It's NOT Quite Convenient!

So here I am, working a half day on Christmas Eve because Ebenezer Safeco wouldn't give me a full day off. I've been complaining for weeks now that I would be going out of town for the weekend, would have to come back to work for a half day, and then immediately go back out of town again.

I have been quoting my hero and role model - Scrooge for days now, as I do every year this time of year. And since I have yet to be visited by any spirits, I'm still grumpy. Although, in theory, I don't see how ghosts keeping me up all night would make me any more cheerful or merry. I assume I would be saying a lot of things along the lines of, "let me go back to sleep you damn ghosts."

But before I get too far off track, here is some of the greatest dialogue in literary history, dialogue which I find quite apropos today.

Scrooge: You'll want the day off tomorrow I suppose

Cratchit: If it's quite convenient sir.

Scrooge: It's NOT quite convenient, not at all sir, and not fair! If I were to dock you half a crown for it, you'd think yourself ill-used!

Cratchit: Mr. Scrooge....

Scrooge: But you don't think me ill-used when I pay full day's wages for no days work!

Cratchit: It's only once a year sir.

Scrooge: That's a poor excuse for picking a man's pocket every 25th of December.

The entire novel is available online in pdf format here. Or you can just watch one of the many film adaptations. Which reminds me, why haven't I seen Scrooged on tv yet this year. Usually TNT and/or TBS have combined to show it approximately 35 times by now. What gives?

The Curse Is Broken

I am pleased to report that with the help of Stevie Ray Vaughn, I have finally purged the previously mentioned song which I will longer acknowledge from my brain. Hearing Stevie tear through Voodoo Child in the best version I have ever heard is truly a joy. If you have ever flipped by PBS during their pledge drive, then I have no doubt you've already seen the Live From Austin City Limits show before. I believe that Stevie Ray Vaughn and Double Trouble have single handedly kept PBS afloat for the past 7 or so years. They play that show at least a half dozen times every pledge drive. As a matter of fact, that may be the only time I ever actually watch PBS. That's not entirely true, I do watch the travelogues occasionally. But I usually speed past as quickly as possible. Anyway, if you somehow have never seen the Austin City Limits show, then something is wrong with you. Also, you should now watch Voodoo Child immediately. And if you wish to send me a $50 donation, you will receive a stylish duffel bag in 6-8 weeks in addition to the heartwarming feeling you will now doubt have for contributing to such a worthy cause. If you want to keep seeing quality programming on this blog, don't hesitate to send in your donations.



And I nearly forgot to mention - after watching Stevie Ray, I proceeded to watch some old Thompson Twins videos and got King For A Day stuck in my head for a short time before eventually reverting back to Voodoo Child. I sure do love cheesy 80's pop.

I Win!

It's official, I have now crushed all of the opposition and claimed the title of 2008 Fantasy Football King in my league. Now sit back while I regale you with the spellbinding tale of my rise to power.

It all started back in whatever month it was that we drafted. I had the 4th pick out of 8 and had properly prepared, or so I thought. I loaded up on quality running backs, quarterbacks who could do no wrong, the best defense money could buy, and so on. Shortly after the draft ended, I looked at the all pros I had assembled and it seemed like a foregone conclusion that I would win it all.

After some injuries had me limping to a meager 3-3 record, I was getting no production out of my WR's and out of desperation, agreed to what turned out to be one of the most unfortunate trades in world history. Figuring that he had dodged injury longer than I had expected, I reluctantly sent Adrian Peterson to the evil Dale in exchange for Laverneus Coles and the promising Brandon Marshall. To even out the rosters, I also threw in the disappointing Wes Welker who had done jack squat all year to this point. Of course, then very next day, Peterson ran for nearly 300 yards, and Welker had about 220 receiving.

The next thing I knew I was 3-9. Battling it out for last place with the other 3-9 team, I managed to end my 6 game losing streak and secure the #7 seed for the playoffs. That's when things began to turn around. Drew Brees came up big for me as I squeezed out a win to knock off the #2 seed. A week later I toppled the #3 seed. That left me matched up with my nemesis - #1 seed Dale who had not lost since fleecing me earlier in the season. Welker did next to nothing for him, and I was left clinging to a 32 point lead with only Adrian Peterson left to play. Would he once again put up a huge game on Sunday night? Would this trade come back to haunt me yet again?

As luck would have it, Peterson had a miserable game, scoring a measly 3 fantasy points, and I tasted sweet victory, as well as sweet vengeance. I'm not sure which is sweeter at this point. Fortunately I will no longer have to take out a contract on the lives of either Adrian Peterson or Dale. I can even stop hoping that each week the inevitable career ending injury strikes Peterson down. I can also cease cursing the Packers defense for nearly costing me the game.

I can also gloat that I have been saying for over a year now that Kyle Orton should be starting for the Bears, although admittedly one good game isn't exactly solid proof. But leading the team to a 10-6 record as a rookie should have gotten him more respect than it did. Hear me now and believe me later, Orton will be in the pro bowl within 3 years. Probably after being let go by the Bears to make room on the roster for an expensive 1st round draft pick who will never pan out. I'm going to guess that Colt Brennan will be that draft pick. The highly respected NFL Draft Countdown (link on your right) is currently projecting the Bears drafting Andre Woodson, QB from Kentucky, but I'm going to stick with Brennan.

Merry Christmas

If you haven't heard Gary Hoey's Christmas album - Ho Ho Hoey - then you're in for a real holiday treat. Here is a video of his rendition of You're A Mean One Mr. Grinch. I absolutely love this.



And as if that weren't enough, here is Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree. My favorite is still the 12 Days of Christmas, so maybe tomorrow I'll throw that up there if I can find it on the net, and maybe if you're real good, Santa will bring you a video of Joe Satriani playing some holiday tunes.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Stitches

I don't know why a song I haven't heard in 5 years will suddenly get stuck in my head, but I have been unable to get the song Stitches out of my head for 4 or 5 days now. I did have a brief period last night when I thought I'd broken free of it's spell - the Stone Temple Pilots classic Dead and Bloated came on the radio - but that only lasted about half an hour before Stitches came back again. It's not even a very good song, and the worst thing about it is that Orgy is an absolute crap band. To start out with, they've got a stupid name, and add to that the fact that they are a bunch of posers that look like a cross between gay runway models and pouty goth whiners with ridiculous haircuts and eyeliner that looks like it was applied with a paint brush. Well, rather than listen to my description, just see for yourself.



I can't even begin to explain how much it pains me to admit that I've ever listened to this, let alone that I can't get it out of my head now. If anyone knows how to get it out of my head without resorting to head trauma, I'm all ears.

Retrospect 2

Oh, the shame! Apparently Sevendust's new CD/DVD combo - Retrospect 2 has been out for 10 days now and I didn't find out about it until just now. Rest assured that my copy is now on it's way. Even though it's mostly live recordings on the CD, there are 3 new studio tracks and over 2 hours of video. And for only $14 and no shipping, you won't find a better deal out there. Order your copy today, all the cool kids are.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

My Dog Ate It

I don't know why I find this so amusing, but I do, so deal with it. Apparently Jon Papelbon's dog chewed up his souvenir baseball from the World Series. The same ball that he threw to strike out Seth Smith and end the series. Yes, I actually do feel a little sorry for him, but the comedy is outweighing the tragedy at the moment. And since comedy = tragedy plus time, this will only get funnier.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Vote Ron Paul

This is easily the most brilliant political ad I've ever seen. No mud slinging, no negative campaigning at all. Just a pure, uplifting message. I couldn't agree more that we need smaller government. After seeing this, my mind is made up: I'm voting for Ron Paul.


He's Not Johan Santana

......but the Mariners are expected to announce any minute now that they've agreed to terms with Carlos Silva. This move already has me salivating. We don't have to give up anything other than cash to get him, he's a relatively young 28 years old, and he eats up a lot of innings. Add to that a respectable 4.19 ERA, despite a mediocre 13-14 record, he should put up better numbers in pitcher friendly Safeco Field with a more potent offense backing him up. We are rumored to be offering him a 4 year deal, and I'm sure I'll have to blink myself back to consciousness when the dollar figure is announced, but whatever that figure is, it's almost sure to be worth it. This is a huge boost to the pitching staff, and one more average or better pitcher to take Horacio Ramirez's spot in the rotation could very well make the M's contenders next year. That is as long as the hated Bill Bavasi doesn't trade off too much young talent in the acquisition of another pitcher. If, as has been rumored, he deals Adam Jones and Brandon Morrow for anyone other than Johan Santana, I will tear out his black heart and eat it, thereby consuming his courage. His tasty, tasty courage. At this point I will close by reiterating: give me Johan Santana! And don't trade Morrow and Jones you big, evil jedi looking idiot.

**Update**

Here's a better story from the P.I.

Quote of the Day!

Bring me my ranch dressing hose! - Homer Simpson

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Robotic Vacuums

Something has been bothering me about these robotic vacuums. Well, first of all, where does all the dirt go if it doesn't have a bag? I'm sure it's got some tiny little compartment tucked away somewhere and it doesn't need a normal size one due to the fact that it doesn't really pick anything up. But that's not what's really bothering me, that one just popped into my head before I could type this: all of them that I have seen are completely round, so how do they get anything in the corners?

I am really not sold on those things. I think I'll just wait for the full blown robotic maid/girlfriend. Oh wait, scratch that last part - I said too much.

Pro Bowl

Congratulations to the 6 Seahawks heading to the Pro Bowl in February. In case you haven't heard yet, Walter Jones is going for I believe the 26th consecutive time and this time he is taking Matt Hasselbeck with him as well as 4 defenders. Marcus Trufant is long overdue and I think has been very underrated for years. Unfortunately for the Seahawks, it happened in a contract year. That'll cost us. Patrick Kerney, Lofa Tatupu, and Julian Peterson should come as no surprise to anyone. I'm also pleased to see Ken Hamlin get voted in despite playing for the hated Cowboys. I really never thought he'd return to form. I'm also glad to see Sean Taylor get voted in posthumously. That's a wonderful gesture, although I'm sure it pissed off the hateful, bigoted Shelvis to no end. Get over it man.

But what this all really tells me is that the Seahawks really do have a good chance to make it to another Superbowl. It may be a cliche, but defense wins championships, and the D has been solid this year. If we could just get some consistancy on offense and somehow find a way to piece together some kind of running game, we're in business.

UW Fires Defensive Coordinator

I'm a little surprised it took this long, but yesterday the Huskies fired defensive coordinator Kent Baer after having the worst defense in school history. Also on the chopping block was the TE and special teams coach. I'm not sure the defensive problems were entirely his fault, some of those DB's are pretty bad, but it still needed to be done. He probably should have gotten the axe before the end of the season.

In other college football news, the bowl season officially gets underway this Thursday with the who gives a crap bowl featuring two teams nobody wants to watch. It's time to get rid of the bowl system and get a playoff going. There are way too many bowl games anymore and all you have to do to get in one is post a .500 record. I like the bowl tradition, but it's so diluted now that it's become meaningless and it's time to scrap it. The first game I care about this year will be Alabama vs. Colorado on December 30. Roll Tide!

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Ventures

Congratulations to local band, as well as my Uncle's all time favorite band The Ventures for finally getting elected to the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame. Innovators in surf guitar, they have sold over 90 million albums in their career, and lacking any evidence to the contrary, I am claiming that they are the most successful instrumental group of all time. I have been to see them live twice now, and they still put on a great show despite getting on in years.

If you've never heard them before, then here's a clip of them playing live at the EMP about a year ago. And as a matter of fact, the announcer confirms my statement that they are the #1 selling instrumental group in history. I'm not sure why Nokie Edwards was playing bass in this show, he usually plays lead guitar. Anyway, enjoy.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Star Wars HD

I was thinking about it today and got to wondering why Star Wars hasn't been released on HD DVD yet. George Lucas is always looking for new ways to cash in on the franchise, so I can't help wondering what he's waiting for. At this point the only logical explanation I can come up with is that he's trying to get the HD DVD people and Sony into a bidding war to bribe him to choose their respective format. Of course, if he goes with Blu Ray I'll have to punch him in his swelled head.

Misanthropist

I am neither a misogynist or a misandrist, but special thanks goes out to the Chuckman for pointing out that I am, in fact, a misanthropist. I hate and distrust all people with an equal fervor regardless of classification or category. Truth be told, even the people I like I secretly hate. And I secretly (well, not so secretly anymore) hate the Chuckman for bringing this to my attention.

So Long IHOP


As you can plainly see, the run down International House of Pancakes in the U-district is no more. It was overpriced, and the food wasn't very good, but, well, I was trying to think of something good to say about it but I can't come up with anything. I'm glad it's gone. It'll probably be replaced by some more overpriced condos or apartments. Apparently you can never have too many of those in the area. Otherwise a parking spot might eventually open up. There seems to be some Seattle city ordinance that the ratio of people to parking spaces can never drop below 6:1 under any circumstances.
And where do they get off calling themselves "international"? I've never seen or heard of one being in another country. Just because they try to make it look like a Swiss chalet doesn't make it international.
And finally, why does putting multiple pictures in the same post screw up the text formatting? It sure is irritating.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

13 Hours

I somehow managed to get approximately 13 hours of sleep Friday night/Saturday morning. For those of you scoring at home, that's more than 2 night's worth based on the roughly 6 hours a night I estimate I've been averaging in recent weeks/months. The sad thing is that I've still felt tired and sluggish all day. I don't know how many 13 hour nights I need to pull of to get caught up, but here's hoping that tonight does the trick.

And what's really troubling to me is that I don't know what has caused this recent bout of insomnia. I either have difficulty falling asleep, or I keep waking up throughout the night, or I wake up and can't get back to sleep, or a combination of all three. By the end of the week, I'm just a zombie at work.

Now I'm a little ashamed to admit that I cheated on the 13 hours. I couldn't have pulled off such a feat without performance enhancing drugs - in this case Unisom. And they typically don't do the trick more than one night in a row. I seem to build up a tolerance to things with amazing speed. This means that I'll get suspended by the sleep commissioner and won't be able to get another good night sleep for a couple weeks. At least I got my one moment in the spotlight.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Useless Trivia

The word misogynist means "woman-hater". What is the equivalent word for man-hater?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Shocking MLB Revelation

The baseball world was rocked today when the long awaited report from Senator George Mitchell was released. The revelation the Bud Selig has been using performance enhancing drugs for years was the biggest surprise to be named in the report. A visibly shaken Selig was quick to announce that he had received tainted supplements and that he never intentionally took banned substances.

While many think that this will forever tarnish the integrity of the game, to others it came as no surprise. Leading baseball analyst Charles Liotta was quoted as saying, "there is no way that a man of his age could keep up such a rigorous schedule of screwing up the game of baseball without the use of performance enhancing drugs. The long hours and extensive travel around the country required to piss off so many baseball fans should have driven him to retirement years ago."

While fair weather baseball fan Shawn Heinle quipped, "Bud Selig is a jacka$$" and occasional baseball watcher Pat Ott had this to say, "huh?"

At the upcoming winter owners meetings, the primary topic of discussion is rumored to be finding a quality assassin to kill Bud Selig. While Mariners owner Hiroshi Yamauchi is pushing to bring in a Yakuza expert, he has met with resistance from Yankees owner George Steinbrenner who favors employing a domestic hit man. "Why go overseas when there are first rate mob contract killers right here?"

Whichever way they choose, experts agree that this is the only viable way for Major League Baseball to resurrect the public's trust.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Useless Trivia

Today I come to you with a double dose of useless trivia since I've been pretty useless lately.



What is the most sparsely populated country in the world?



Me aside, what mammal has the longest hair in the world?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Bit O' Honey

I seem to remember someone around Halloween was on the prowl for some Bit O' Honey. Well, I'm glad to say that I've just been to Top Foods and they have them in their bulk foods section for $2.99 a pound. The only Top Foods I know of is near Crossroads and I'm certainly aware that it isn't the nicest area of town, but it might be worth the trip.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Rumor Mill Part 2

Next up in the old rumor mill is this interesting little tidbit that I just heard last night: In an attempt to resurrect his waning presidential campaign, Barack Obama will name Oprah Winfrey as his running mate. This will syphon off just enough of Hillary's support from female voters for him to win the Democratic nomination.

Now here is where I am adding my own little spin to the rumor: Hillary will retaliate by naming Al Gore as her running mate. It worked for Bill, and would net her all of the environmental nut support.

And Kucinich will name Ross Perot as his running mate just to corner the market on the crazy vote.

Michael Vick

The big news today is that Michael Vick has been sentenced to 23 months for dogfighting. I assume he'll be out in 12, but I think his NFL career is over. He wasn't that good a QB to begin with, and after sitting out at least 2 seasons, I really don't think he'll be worth taking a chance on. He may end up in the CFL hanging out with Ricky Williams and Onterrio Smith, and whatever other NFL castoffs are up there, or he may have to go the Arena League route. Either way I think he's done in the NFL.

I also think he'll end up sharing a cell with Barry Bonds and a steamy jail house romance will ensue. Barry may have to backhand him a few times to keep him in line, but eventually Michael will learn. The time together will give them an opportunity to start their next business venture - sports gambling. Since that is the one taboo that neither of them has broken yet (that we know of), it is the next logical step for both of them.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Van Halen



Still bitter about missing the Van Halen concert, at least I can take a little solace in knowing that I missed out on seeing an over the hill David Lee Roth blow out his hamstring trying to pull off one of his famous kicks from his youth. I'm a little surprised that the P.I. ran such an unflattering photo. I'm still taking bets on whether or not they can stay together until the end of the tour.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Royals Sign Guillen

In what seems to be the start of an annual tradition, the Royals way overpaid for a pretty iffy Mariner. This time they forked over $36 million for a 3 year deal for Jose Guillen. Yes, the same Jose Guillen who can't seem to stay on any one team for longer than 2 years because of personality issues. Yes, the same Jose Guillen who has struggled with injury problems for most of his career. Yes, the same Jose Guillen who just got busted for spending $20k on steroids. And this from a team that perennially is at the bottom of the barrel in payroll. It's a real head scratcher, but to that I say good job Royals. Please take Jose Vidro too.

Rumor Mill

This rumor is hot off the presses. Word is that after firing Karl Dorrell, UCLA is looking to hire none other than former UW head coach Rick Neuheisel. As most of you probably already know, he is a graduate of UCLA, and after being in the NFL for a couple years, will probably not bring as much scrutiny from the NCAA as he would have right after being fired by the UW. Remember, you heard it here first.

Friday, November 30, 2007

A Year Without A Santa Clause

I'm proud to announce that I've found a full length version of A Year Without A Santa Clause. What's more, it is brought to you in glorious widescreen format. Yes, I'm fully aware that as a television show, it's in 4:3 aspect ratio - thus making widescreen irrelevant, but the simple fact that that's an option pleases me. But all that aside, this is one of the best Christmas shows out there. And I know I've said it before, but it bears repeating: Rankin & Bass sure knew how to write a catchy tune. I guess my next mission will have to be finding a full length version of The Hobbit.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Rubber band ball


Here is the exciting story of my rubber band ball. It is entirely composed of rubber bands that have been shot at me by one anonymous co-worker who seems to get bored from time to time. This first picture shows it in it's infancy, sitting next to some common office items to give you an idea of it's size. As you can see, it was born shortly before November 15th.

This second picture shows how many rubber bands were shot at me in just a short 3 or 4 minute period while I was trying to talk on the phone. Needless to say, maintaining your professionalism while bobbing and weaving, and while getting nailed in the back of the head can prove to be a challenge.



Finally, this is how large it has grown to date. I fully expect it to be the size of a basketball by spring. At that point I may donate it to some disadvantaged YMCA somewhere in need of sports equipment. Stay tuned for more exciting updates!

I Don't Get It

After seeing the headlines: US Economic Growth Fastest In 4 Years and Soft home sales, prices cast economic gloom on the same page, I found myself confused by the apparent contradiction. Upon further review, I was able to conclude that one report came from the Commerce Department, and one came from the Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Donald Kohn. I don't have any idea who is more reliable.

I had always thought that looking at economic indicators like inflation, interest rates, unemployment rates, energy prices, value of the dollar against foreign currency, stock prices, etc were the way to gauge the economy, but if "experts" are looking at the same data and coming up with completely different interpretations, then what does that all mean? Are there other economic indicators the people look at that I don't know about that are more subjective? All I can conclude is that I just don't know what makes the economy tick like I thought I did. I guess that shouldn't really come as any big surprise.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Falling Home Sales

According to this article on MSNBC, home sales have fallen for the 8th consecutive month, and the largest drop in sales - 4.4% coming from the Western US. Also of note, median housing prices in the West have fallen 6.9% in the last year. It's comforting to know that we are safe from the housing crunch here in Seattle though....... I'm sure that people still in denial will blame the Western regions problems on California and try to claim that things are still rosy here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Click Your Shiny Metal Remote

That's right, I scored myself a copy of Bender's Big Score and give it the big thumbs up. I don't want to spoil it for you, so I'll limit myself to saying that one or more main characters die, but I won't say which ones. This movie has it all: time travel, cartoon violence, cartoon nudity, Al Gore driving a cab, and more bad jokes than should be allowed by law.

But don't take my word for it. Watch the intro here. If you watch closely, you may notice the subtle reference to the mindless network execs who canceled the show.



I'd write a longer review, but it's past my bed time and need some sleep.

Welcome To The World Of Tomorrow!

That's right, the new Futurama movie: Bender's Big Score is out on DVD today. I plan on picking up a copy on the way home today. Unless you are some kind of jerk, you will be doing the same.

As if that wasn't exciting enough, here are some interesting articles related to Futurama that you should check out: Seattle Times, Wired, and this article from Can't Get Enough Futurama which also has information about 3 more upcoming DVDs.

I think I'm going to organize a Futurama showing at my place on Saturday. Let me know if you're interested in attending.

Software of the Day

Have you ever gotten a new pc only to find that there is a bunch of useless software installed that slows your system down and you will never use? Then this product is for you. I don't know how useful it really is, I just like the name. The PC Decrapifier promises to remove all of the 'craplets' that come pre-installed. How can you go wrong with something like that?

R.I.P. Sean Taylor

Sadly, Sean Taylor succumbed to his injuries this morning. My heart goes out to his friends and family and I hope that his killer is swiftly brought to justice.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Sean Taylor

If you haven't heard already, someone broke into Washington Redskin Pro Bowl safety Sean Taylor's house early Monday morning and shot him in the leg. Because of significant blood loss, he is in critical condition, and doctors fear he may suffer permanent brain damage. My thoughts and prayers go out to Taylor and his family.

I almost hate to admit it, but one of the first things that crossed my mind after hearing this news was "this is exactly why Tank Johnson is a gun nut". I couldn't understand why he kept his guns around after being arrested, suspended by the league, and cut by the Bears because of them, but for some reason professional athletes have become targets. Now I can better understand why he wanted to keep weapons handy.

I hate to turn this tragedy into a second amendment rant, so let me close by reiterating how saddened I am by this news and hope for a full recovery.

Heat Miser

Thanks to a conversation I had with a coworker today, I've had this song stuck in my head all day.

And if you haven't seen A Year Without A Santa Clause before, what's your problem? It's a classic. It makes A Christmas Carol, Miracle on 34th Street, Bad Santa, and all those other Christmas 'classics' look like a pile of puke. I have to warn you though, Rankin & Bass sure knew how to write a catchy jingle, and these songs will bore their way into your brain and take over your life, not unlike the creepy bug things that Kahn put into Chekov's ear in Star Trek 2.

And after learning some shocking revelations about my cousin-in-law about her unrefined cinema palate - in particular that she hasn't seen Conan and has no interest in seeing it - I wouldn't be surprised to find out she's never seen it, or possibly *gasp* has seen it and doesn't like it. The Conan news coming hot on the heels of the announcement that she gave up on Army of Darkness after half an hour has really left me doubting her value as a human being.

And to wrap this up, there are 3 important facts contained within this rambling, aimless mess:
1. Year Without A Santa Clause = good
2. Conan = good
3. Army of Darkness = good

Useless Christmas Trivia

I know it's a little early to start the Christmas talk, but deal with it.

What popular Christmas song was originally written for Thanksgiving?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Awake

I recently saw a preview for the movie Awake:

Plot Summary: A psychological thriller that tells the story of a man (Hayden Christensen) who suffers "anesthetic awareness" and finds himself awake and aware, but paralyzed, during heart surgery. His young wife (Jessica Alba) must wrestle with her own demons as a drama unfolds around them.

Honestly, this movie doesn't look very good, and Hayden Christensen is a terrible actor and very difficult to watch, still I feel strangely compelled to see this film. And the reason for this is because Jessica Alba looks drop dead gorgeous. Yes, I am one of those people who will watch a bad movie because a beautiful woman is in it, but I at least have enough self respect to wait for DVD and not shell out $10 to watch a bad movie in the theater.

But this, in a round about way, brings me to my point. I know, you're as surprised as me that I actually have a point, but here it is: Jessica Alba is one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen - and on the unlikely chance that she's reading this, let me just say that I love you - but she is in so few good movies. As a matter of fact, looking over her profile on IMDB, I realize that she hasn't been in a movie that would be considered good in the traditional sense. And for the record, no Sin City wasn't good. Don't believe the hype or the good reviews - it's all lies. Anyway, to get back to my point before I get too far off on a tangent, how can someone I care so much about continually hurt me by being in these bad movies? And why do I continue to come back for more when I know it will only end in heartache? Surely she's got enough box office draw to be more selective in her roles, so why does she continue to select the bad ones? I guess I just have to be glad that she hasn't taken the Sandra Bullock/Julia Roberts route and converted to 100% chick flicks. That would be too much for me to accept from my dear Jessica.

So please Jessica, please exercise a little more discretion in your selection process and take some roles in better movies.

Stem Cell Breakthrough

I just saw this news today: scientist have found a way to modify skin stem cells so that they mimic embryonic stem cells. This should effectively end the debate on whether or not stem cells should be used for research. So far it seems as though this is just being viewed as a political tool, but I hope that this will open the door to funding for stem cell research and eventually lead to the cure for many diseases.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Video Conversion

Does anyone out there have any experience with video conversion software? What I would like to do is convert some of the video (sorry Shelvis, not adult material) I have on my PC to mp4 format so that I can put it on my ipod and watch it during my commute. I tried the most logical thing and went to Cnet and download the most popular free program. Well, it turns out it didn't work. The software told me that the conversion was complete, but either did not output the converted file to where I told it to, or did not output it at all. I suspect the latter since searching for it didn't yield any results.

Well, I could go try some of the other free programs out there, but would rather not risk downloading a virus. I would prefer to pay a few bucks and get something that I know will work, will be relatively quick and easy to use, and virus free. If you know of such a program, let me know.

Also, it has been a dream of mine to transfer saved programs from my DVR to my PC, convert them to mp4, and then load them on my ipod. Is there an easy way of accomplishing this feat? I may have to wait until I get myself a laptop to do this since I'd need 25 foot long cables to connect my DVR to my PC without some serious rearranging at the moment. Either that or I'd have to burn the programs to DVD and then rip said DVD on my PC, and then finally convert to mp4. That's a lot of work and I assume would lose so much data in the process that the resulting video would be nigh unwatchable. Plus I'm too lazy to do all that.

Touched By His Noodly Appendage

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Flying Spaghetti Monster, he is the high carb deity of the Pastafarian religion. Well, he is in the news again. He has sparked a raging debate at the American Academy of Religion. You can read more about it here. Be warned though, if you are from Kansas you won't find it amusing.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Sustainable Oil

Now here is an article that interests me. Basically, a biodiesel refinery has joined forced with a biotech company to genetically engineer a plant that produces 20% more oil than conventional plants. But wait, there's more! This plant, known as the camelina, also grows in very arid regions which have very little agricultural use anyway. Sustainable Oil plans on producing 100 million gallons of biodiesel a year by 2010.

If this joint venture ever goes public, I think I might buy some stock. The only downside I see at the moment is the limited number of diesel vehicles available in the US. But if this catches on, perhaps biodiesel vehicle won't be driven solely by pretentious tree huggers concerned more about looking like they care more than their eco-buddies than actually doing anything for the environment.

I've been interested in biodiesel for a while now, but haven't been able to find sufficient data on it. Based on the studies I've seen, ethanol/E85 doesn't really cut down on any emissions when all variables are considered from the farm to your car, not to mention that it costs more per gallon than gas and gets about 85% of the mileage. Fuel cells still appear to be decades away if they are a viable alternative at all, and hybrid vehicles don't make sense financially and have such a minimal edge over traditional internal combustion vehicles that they really only appeal to the same crowd as current biodiesel owners: those people who want to slap stickers all over their car advertising how much they care about the environment. Battery technology has come a long way, and electric vehicles are now an option in terms of performance, but are still too expensive. And if you want to see a great unintentional comedy, watch Who Killed The Electric Car.

This article touts that biodiesel has 78.45% less carbon dioxide emissions than diesel, but doesn't mention any of the other emissions. I'm not sure why, but I've had a lot of difficulty finding data on biodiesel and so still remain skeptical. The internet is littered with ethanol studies, but why no biodiesel? What are they trying to hide? I'd like to believe it's a viable alternative to gas, and not just because the exhaust smells like french fries. At this point, I'm not sure that European style turbo-diesels aren't the best option, but for some reason they just aren't making it over here. I guess I'll just have to stick with my gas powered car until someone can convince me otherwise.

Useless Trivia

The honey mushroom is believed to be the world's largest living organism. Found in Malheur National Forest in eastern Oregon, it covers 2,200 acres underground.

Also, if you are entertained by things that rhyme, it has been dubbed "the humongous fungus"

Friday, November 16, 2007

I'm A Genius

Finally the recognition I deserve. And this is proof that if you don't enjoy my blog, it's because you aren't intelligent enough to understand it.

cash advance

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Shining

Oh man, I wish I'd found this before Halloween.

Here's To You Mr. Notre Dame Fan

This is so beautiful I nearly wept with joy when I watched it.

Fun Size

To me there is no more egregious lie perpetrated on America by the Madison Avenue fatcats than labeling tiny candy bars as 'fun size'. There is nothing in the world about small candy that makes it more fun than larger candy. I refuse to tolerate this any longer and am considering writing my congressman. If he will not take action, I may be forced to take up a petition in order to get a measure on the next ballot outlawing this. It is a clear violation of the truth in advertising act.

Yamagato Fellowship

All you Heroes fans out there should check out the Yamagato Fellowship web site. It's good stuff. And if you are not a Heroes fan by now, what's the matter with you? Go out and rent season 1 right now and stop being a jerk.

Digital Video Essentials

Has anyone used Digital Video Essentials before? I've been thinking that I should give it a try so as to fully optimize my home theater, but don't know if it will make a noticable difference. I could rent it from Netflix, but all they have is a 4 or 5 year old version that doesn't have anything about HD on there, so I don't know if that does me any good anyway. Also, based on some of the reviews, it doesn't come with the color strips that you have to look through in order to get the picture right so it is limited in it's effectiveness anyway. And since I'm red-green color blind, I'm not sure I could properly adjust the color anyway.

So can anybody tell me if this is essential as they claim or is it a waste of time? Should I rent the non-HD version or find myself the HD version?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Biodiesel

Is there some law that I'm unaware of requiring drivers of biodiesel vehicles to cover their car with bumper stickers notifying everyone around them that they use biodiesel? I only ask because every biodiesel car I see is a rolling billboard.

Useless Trivia

The word 'tip' is an acronym for To Insure Promptness and was originally given out before the order was served.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Berkeley Tree Sitters

If you're unfamiliar with the saga of the Berkeley Tree Sitters, here's a quick synopsis: UC Berkeley has announced an expansion to the athletic complex - to be built next to the stadium. Building the complex would involve cutting down some oak trees. Since this is Berkeley, some whack jobs have taken up residence in said trees to keep the university from cutting them down.

This whole situation is absolutely asinine, but what really got to me was seeing some photos of these wastes of space in my ESPN magazine mugging for the camera, soaking up all the attention they can, and seeing a quote from a woman who goes by the moniker "Millipede" saying:

This has nothing to do with football. We'd be doing the same thing if it
was a library. This isn't about us trying to compete by asserting our
dominance as a protest school.


Now I actually agree with that assessment. But what Millipede left out is what it does have to do with, and it has to do with is some people who are completely lost, have absolutely no self worth, and are willing to grasp on to any cause, no matter how ridiculous in order to feel important and get some attention. This is absolutely the most sad and pathetic thing I've seen in quite some time. These poor knuckleheads are completely vacuous and I think that as soon as the university really wants to get them out of the trees, the just have to cordon off the area at the base of the trees, and when their supply of weed runs out, they'll come down and then come down. Damn worthless hippies.

Intercontinental Ballistic Water Heater

I love Mythbusters, and the latest episode I saw was maybe my favorite yet. Apparently if you have an improperly set up water heater, it can in fact turn into a rocket. But enough of my yackin', watch the video for yourself and enjoy. It's some good stuff.

My Ambulance Ride

Sit back and enjoy this thrilling tale of the one time I got to ride in an ambulance. This memory was brought back to me after seeing Jake Locker taken off the field in an ambulance, for you see, about 10 years ago I had a similar situation. I was not hit by a vicious defender, however, I was hit by a Geo Metro driven by an idiot. I was riding my motorcycle, happy as can be when said driver backed out of his driveway right in front of me because he was apparently in too big a hurry to look and see if anyone was coming.

I was in a residential neighborhood, cruising along at 25 mph at the time, so it wasn't a big collision, but after sliding to a halt, some kind neighbor came running out and asked me if I was ok. I didn't feel any pain, but did a quick pat down to make sure everything was still there and where it was supposed to be. It was at this time that I noticed blood dripping from the fingers on my right hand. I pulled up my sleeve and looked at my arm and saw a nice gash right down to the bone. I immediately looked away because, well, seeing my own bones bothered me quite a bit. The adrenaline must have been pumping pretty good because I still didn't feel any pain.

Shortly afterward, the ambulance showed up. Some EMT's spent a few minutes poking at me and asking if this hurt or that hurt. No, nothing hurt and they concluded that the only injury was what would turn out to be a broken arm. So naturally they slapped a neck brace on me, told me to hop on the gurney, and proceeded to strap me down so that I couldn't move, and tape my head to the gurney so I could only look straight up. We stopped somewhere on the way to the hospital - I'm not sure where because all I could see was the ceiling. I assume one of the drivers was jonesing for some slim jims or something and decided to make a quick stop at the 7-11.

That was enough of a slowdown that my brother, who wasn't at home at the time and didn't get home until shortly after the ambulance left, was at the hospital waiting for me by the time I got there. The other nice touch was almost getting dropped when they pulled me out of the ambulance because the wheels on the gurney didn't drop on their own.

That's when I realized that they will slap a neck brace on you and throw you in an ambulance at the drop of a hat, and why I wasn't overly concerned about Locker being carted out. I just assumed that they were being extra cautious.

Anyway, after laying in the emergency room for a good 45 minutes to an hour, a doctor finally came in to see me and I got to spend what seemed like the next few days, but in reality was probably only 2 or 2.5 hours having glass, paint chips, and various other debris dug out of my arm. The adrenaline had stopped by then because I can guarantee you that I felt that. They administered several shots of novocaine, but there is no amount of novocaine in the world to overcome that amount of discomfort. Luckily they had me face down so I couldn't see what they were doing, but I did look over occasionally to see a look of horror on my mom's face. I just had to grit my teeth and clench my other fist, and I was sweating like I was being interrogated by the KGB. Now all I have to remember the experience by is a nice scar on my forearm. And I guess the moral of the story is that if you ever have an injury that requires them to dig debris out of a body part, save yourself the pain and just have the limb amputated.

Qdoba Is Mexican For No Good

There is a new Qdoba Mexican Grill close to the office that just opened up recently and I stopped in for lunch today and was thoroughly unimpressed. I got the taco salad with chicken, and the chicken was all dried out and the whole thing was pretty flavorless. And it was fairly small for $6.50.

I would have been much better off going 2 blocks down the road to Mi Charrito (which I have no idea what that means). I would have gotten fresher, tastier food and a much larger portion for the same price. Plus I would have been able to order it from someone who can count well enough to make correct change (the girl at Qdoba couldn't) and it would have been made by an authentic Mexican who doesn't speak English. I don't know why, but the guys who either don't speak English or barely speak English cook better.

So don't go to Qdoba. But if you find yourself around 45th and Brooklyn, stop in to Mi Charrito.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Husky Game

The Husky game against Oregon State on Saturday was unquestionably one of the strangest games I've ever seen. Jake Locker left the game in the first quarter in an ambulance only to walk back into the stadium in the 4th quarter (and if I remember I'll share my own ambulance story this week). 4 players were ejected. OSU coach Mike Riley proved to be a hot headed jackass, which I blame for his team getting out of control (and 3 of the 4 players ejected were from OSU). The momentum shifted so many times that every time I thought OSU had the game wrapped up, the UW would suddenly come storming back. The UW benefitted from one of the worst, if not the worst officiating calls I've ever seen at any level of any sporting event and yet still managed to blow it. I saw a QB throw a block and pancake a defensive end, and despite the fact that he is a terrible passer, that earned a lot of respect from me for OSU QB Lyle Moevae. And I found out that OSU has a running back named Yvenson Bernard (pronounced Evanson oddly enough) who I would have sworn was Swedish by looking at his name on the roster but as it turns out is from Florida originally. All in all, just a strange game.

American Gangster

I caught American Gangster today and was quite pleased with it. It isn't groundbreaking at all - it's very much like a lot of other mob movies - but it's the details that make it worthwhile.

Frank Lucas (played by Denzel Washington) is an evil, vicious, murdering drug lord, who at the same time is charming and likable. Kind of like Vito and Michael Corleone in the Godfather movies in that you kind of like them even though they are despicable people. Richie Roberts (played by Russell Crowe) on the other hand, is a good and honest cop, but he's a womanizer, a lousy dad, and kind of a jerk, so even though he's the good guy and doing the right thing, it's difficult to like him anyway.

It is this kind of character development which makes the movie so interesting. The story delves into their motivations, as well as their methods. You get to see how they are able to achieve their goals. For Frank Lucas, he personally visits a poppy plantation in Vietnam to cut a deal to buy heroin directly from them, thereby eliminating who knows how many middle men and both cutting his costs and getting pure product that hasn't been cut.

So it is an in depth look at the inner workings of a sophisticated crime syndicate and at the same time a look at an honest cop's struggles to clean up a dirty, violent New York when a lot of his fellow officers are dishonest. And if this movie accurately represents what New York was like in the 70's, it was a hell hole.

Friday, November 09, 2007

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays Are Gone

Unable to bring in quality players, the Devil Rays hope to change their losing ways by changing their name to simply the Rays and changing their uniforms. If that doesn't have them competing for a pennant next year, I don't know what will. Apparently the stigma of losing had attached itself to the team name and colors and that's what had been holding them back.

Troy Williamson Fined

In a truly classless move that leaves me absolutely appalled, the Vikings fined WR Troy Williamson one game check for missing Sunday's game to coordinate the funeral of his grandmother. Williamson was apparently very close to his grandmother, and in addition to having to make the funeral arrangements, had to make arrangements for several family members to fly into town to attend.

With the NFL currently suffering image problems after increasing legal problems by it's players, punctuated by the Michael Vick, Pacman Jones, Tank Johnson, and Bengals scandals in recent months, it's very difficult for me that they would take this action against a good man who was doing the right thing. I strongly doubt that there is any reputable company in this country who would deny an employee bereavement leave. I only hope that Roger Goodell or someone in the NFL steps up and not only reimburses Williamson, but also publicly commends him for taking care of his family. And the Vikings owe him at the very least an apology.

I really hope that Williamson is able to get out of Minnesota and go to an organization with a little more class.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Get Over It Dolphins

Don Shula has been in the media saying that if the Patriots go undefeated, they should get an asterisk by their name for cheating. I know that the members of the 72 Dolphins are clinging to that accomplishment with the tenacity of a pit bull, but this is just ridiculous. I hate the Pats as much as anybody, but there isn't anyone in the world who can honestly say that they wouldn't have won any of their games anyway. I'm more than a little disappointed in Shula because I had always thought of him as a classy guy, but this is just pathetic. The Pats or anybody else going undefeated in no way tarnishes what the Dolphins did, so I really don't understand the seemingly great amount of concern with anybody else having a perfect season.

And so my first ever Get Over Yourself award goes to Don Shula.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

It's So Dark

While I do enjoy the extra hour of sleep, I'm shocked and depressed about how dark it is when I get off work now. I have a little bit of light in the mornings, but it won't be long until that's gone too. It's what, a month and a half until the shortest day of the year still? It is really difficult to not get down with so little sunlight. I think I may have that seasonal adjustment disorder or whatever they call it. I just want to hibernate all winter. I don't want to be around anybody and I have the overwhelming urge to sleep all the time. Although I do manage to stay awake all day so perhaps it's not overwhelming - simply whelming.

Wedding Crashers

Today's quote of the day comes from the Wedding Crashers:
"Grief is nature's most powerful aphrodisiac."

I just watched this movie again, and if you haven't seen it yet, drop whatever you're doing and go watch it right now. It is one of the funniest movies I've seen in years. Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn really play well off of each other, and even though he doesn't really have a comedic part, Christopher Walken is pretty funny in his own weird way. Sure, there is some low brow humor, but it doesn't go overboard with it. The movie for the most part maintains it's dignity. And I think the funniest scene was when Vince Vaughn was making balloon animals and some kid yelled at him, "shut your mouth funny guy and make me a bicycle." I don't know why, but that cracks me up every time. Come to think of it, any scene with Vince being verbally, physically, or mentally abused is pretty funny.

A lot of comedies tend to lose their humor at the end as they try to wrap up the plot, but the Wedding Crashers manages to stay funny throughout. It keeps throwing jokes at you while still advancing the plot. And Wilson and Vaughn have so much fun that if I ever get married, I hope they crash my wedding.

My New Favorite Song

Becoming the Bull (Atreyu)

And in my continuing quest to find a streaming site that isn't blocked at work, I'm giving this one a try. I already don't like it because I have to edit the HTML code to take out some text that was annoying me and to turn off the loop. I should probably turn off the autoplay as well, but I'm too lazy right now.

We're Coming Up On Re-election Day

I have seen people for close to a week now standing on street corners holding or waving signs for political candidates or referendums. I certainly don't have enough motivation to stand out in the cold waving a sign for any cause or candidate. And what's more, I really don't think it does any good. Has anyone ever voted for or against something or someone because they saw someone holding a sign? I really doubt it.

The point of all this is: remember to go out and vote today. And maybe listen to some Arcadia while you're voting.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Subway Pizza

After being publicly challenged to consume and keep down a Subway pizza, I can say that I have now completed part one of the task and so far am well on my way to keeping it down. Yes, I will almost always accept such a challenge since eating is my extreme sport. Not eating vast quantities, but rather eating things of questionable quality. It all started when I was questioned why I would voluntarily eat a 7-11 chili cheese dog (or danger dog as I have dubbed it) and my response was that I did it for the adrenaline rush instead of something like bungee jumping. Anyway, on to the pizza.

My first impression upon receiving said pizza was $5.50 plus $.50 per topping is pretty steep for such a tiny little pizza (approximately 6" in diameter). But quality is more valuable than quantity they say, so I proceeded to eat it. I'm sad to say that the quality wasn't so good either. I believe they just bought some cheap frozen pizzas and enhance them with their own toppings. This makes it slightly higher quality than a standard frozen pizza, but not by much. I'd rather spend $.89 on a Totinos and roll the dice with the e-coli. The crust was way too thick on the Subway, 90% of the pizza consisted of crust by my estimation. The pepperoni and sausage that I elected as toppings were decent quality, and they did in fact throw some "fresh" mozzarella on there, but overall it was just a waste of time. Save your time and money and skip it.

And if this is my last ever post, then you'll know that the pizza killed me.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Swallowing My Pride

As much as it pains me to do so, I have to admit that Tom Brady is one hell of a quarterback. I still hate him like the Ayatollah however.

Spanish 101

This is the best way I know of to learn Spanish:

As you may or may not have guessed, today's featured artist is Nonpoint. The above song is titled Rabia (it rages). I personally think their song Orgullo (pride) is much better, but I can't find a video with anywhere near acceptable audio. Below is the best I could do:

Break Away Drawers

Salvation has come at last for nerds everywhere. 8 year old twins in Ohio, presumably fed up by repeated wedgies from bullies everywhere, have invented the "Rip Away 1000." This self explanatory product may protect geek cracks worldwide, however I fear will provide trophies that will only encourage bullies. It seems to me that going commando might be a simpler solution. Or perhaps the return to prominence of the codpiece or even the loin cloth is in order. I don't have any first hand experience with either I'm sad to say, but do believe that both have the ability to render the wearer invulnerable to attacks of that nature.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Lost Boys

Seeing the Lost Boys on the big screen turned out to be a big bust. That was absolutely the worst picture I have ever seen. It was super grainy, there were several spots in the middle where the video and audio cut out, and there was a mysterious yellowish splotch in the middle of the screen that all drove me crazy. But what was perhaps the worst offense of them all that I had completely forgotten about was seeing this scene in huge size. It gave me nightmares worse than any horror movie I've ever seen.

Shelvis may find it oddly arousing, but I would have been better off walking out of the theater as soon as the film started. For some reason I thought the picture might clear up eventually, but it never did.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

King Kong

I can't help wondering, how much of the damage caused by King Kong would Carl Denham be liable for since he brought him back to New York. And would any insurance company underwrite a giant ape policy? Maybe Lloyds of London.

Quote of the Day!

Today's quote of the day comes from the Simpsons Treehouse of Horrors III - in my humble opinion, the most cromulent of all Treehouse of Horrors episodes. And without further adieu:

Karl: Hey, I heard we're goin' to Ape Island.
Lenny: Yeah, to capture a giant ape.
Karl: I wished we were going to Candy Apple Island.
Charlie: Candy Apple Island? What do they got there?
Karl: Apes. But they're not so big.

And to my surprise, the spell checker didn't flag the word cromulent and yet flagged the word treehouse. I guess this goes to show just how much the Simpsons has woven itself into the fabric of society.

Spiderman 3

I finally got around to watching Spiderman 3, and after having seen some mediocre reviews wasn't expecting too much. Perhaps having low expectations helps because I thought it was better than expected. It was a step down from the first 2 in the series, however, and I think mainly because they tried to cram too much story into it. There were really too many sub plots going on for one movie. And I felt like the drama with Mary Jane was kind of a retread from part 2.

That being said, Sam Raimi really did a great job portraying the inner struggle within Peter Parker, and did so in a way that most people can relate to. The struggle between doing the right thing and doing what you want. I guess this shouldn't come as any surprise since it has been the crux of all 3 movies. But I guess what makes it so great is that not only is it relatable, but it doesn't come across as preachy. It's also nice to see Peter Parker grow as a human being.

As in the first 2 films, this also has lots of high flying action and great special effects. Plus some nice cameos by Stan Lee and Bruce Campbell. You've got to love Bruce, even as a snooty French maitre'di.

The ending left the door open for another sequel, but I'm not sure it's a good idea. They are running out of villains, and I don't know how much longer they can keep the tension going between Peter and Mary Jane, it's getting stale already. I think they are better off quitting while they are ahead.

Cry Little Sister

I just realized that I left one very important movie off of my Halloween movies list. Lost Boys. It may well be a movie that you had to see at the right age when it came out and therefore still have the fond memories of it. Or maybe not. I'm not sure if nostalgia is clouding my vision and not letting me see how dated it is now. I will admit that it did have some pretty cheesy music in it (excluding The Doors - When You're Strange obviously), and anything with the two Corey's in it is trouble.

Anyway, I'm heading over to Bremerton to visit my brother on Friday and am delighted to say that the theater on PSNS is showing Lost Boys. I'm looking forward to this than I probably should be, but in my defense, I have never seen it in the theater and I'm willing to bet this is my last chance. I hope to see you all there.

And I'm not sure what this site is all about, but I think it might be from the band that wrote Cry Little Sister.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Poltergeist

I just finished watching Poltergeist, and despite looking quite dated, wasn't too bad. The house built on a burial ground thing is kind of cliche, but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt that it wasn't back then. I will say though that there is nothing more terrifying than a crazed, irrational mother repeatedly screaming, "my babies!" - something the movie exploits. Wait, did I say terrifying, I meant annoying. But despite these drawbacks, the movie is tolerable.

Sports Pickle

For those of you unfamiliar with Sports Pickle, you owe it to yourself to check it out. Similar in nature to The Onion and The Borowitz Report, Sports Pickle prints fake news stories, but different from the other two, specializes in fake sports stories. Usually they are hit and miss, but some of them are quite funny. Check it out.

Trick or Treat

Well, it's now 9:15 and I have had no trick or treaters this year. I know there are no children in my building, but there are plenty in my complex, so I'm a little surprised I haven't had any. Now I've got a Costco sized bag of candy with no one to feed it to.

Halloween Movie Guide: Part 2

Since I've put this off too long and it is now Halloween, and I don't feel very verbose today, this will be mercifully brief.

Haunted House Movies:

13 Ghosts - I thought this movie was ok the first time I watched it, but seem to like it more and more with each additional viewing. Plus the bonus features on the DVD are pretty good.

House on Haunted Hill - Not great by any stretch of the imagination, but watchable.

The Haunting - Same as above.

Amityville Horror - Very unrealistic for a movie that claims to be based on a true story, but still kind of creepy. Watch the original version, not the terrible remake from a couple years ago.

The Shining - A true classic and probably the best known haunted house movie of all time. Jack Nicholson is fantastic, plus it led to one of the best Simpson's parodies of all time - Treehouse of Horror V. I can't believe it hasn't been on tv this year.

The Haunted Mansion - I had high hopes for this movie after the success of Pirates of the Caribbean, but despite top notch special effects, first rate set design, and great ambiance, this still fell short. The story was not very cohesive, and it just seemed kind of aimless. And I'm not sure Eddie Murphy was a good choice.

Frankenstein movies:

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is really the only version of this story that I thought was any good. Robert DeNiro turned in a great performance. I had initially thought he was an odd choice, but was pleasantly surprised.

Mummy movies:

The Mummy starring Boris Karloff was very good. I've found that a lot of the old monster movies are a bit boring and corny, but this one turned out great.

The Mummy starring Brendan Fraser is a little on the goofy side but is still good fun.

Bubba Ho-Tep - Completely different from any other movie you'll ever see. Bruce Campbell is great as Elvis, and Ossie Davis pulls off a quality JFK. More comedy than horror, this one is a must see.

Werewolf movies:

Underworld - this one could also have gone in the vampire category, but the werewolf category is a lot thinner. Underworld and Underworld Evolution are both good movies about the ongoing battle between vampires and werewolves.

Harry Potter and the Werewolf - I can't remember which movie had the werewolf in it, but it was pretty good.

Wolf - a little slow, but gets good at the end.

Miscellaneous movies:

These movies don't really fit in any other category.

Army of Darkness - I don't have enough superlatives for this movie. One of my all time favorite movies of any genre, I absolutely love it. Bruce Campbell reprises his role as Ash from Evil Dead 1 and 2 and in this one is transported to the middle ages by an evil force where he must battle the 'deadites' - an army of the undead - for the possession of the necronomicon - the book of the dead. Hands down the best B movie ever made, go out and watch it right now.

Frailty - Bill Paxton is visited by an angel who tells him he has to slay demons disguised as humans with an axe named Otis. Naturally, this is somewhat disruptive to the life of his 2 young boys. This one also comes highly recommended by me.

Sleepy Hollow - Tim Burton is one of the best directors for creating ambiance, and this is some of the best cinematography I've ever seen. Johnny Depp also turns in a great performance as does Ray Park who played the headless horseman - at least while he doesn't have a head. Better know for being Darth Maul, he is better with weapons than any other actor in history. Except maybe Bruce Lee.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow - the Disney cartoon narrated by Bing Crosby has always been one of my favorites. Perhaps it's just nostalgia.

From Hell - Not really a Halloween movie, but still scary. This movie about Jack the Ripper is outstanding. One warning though - I haven't met a woman who liked this movie, I assume because of the subject matter.

The Sixth Sense - more psychological thriller than horror movie, I love this movie.

Red Dragon - again, technically not a horror movie, in my opinion this is the scariest movie ever made. I find serial killer movies scarier than monster movies. Red Dragon has it all, a great story, incredible acting all around although I'm particularly fond of Harvey Keitel's performance as special agent Crawford, suspense, and of course Hannibal Lecter.

and finally...

Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Wererabbit - just good fun.

Google Video

I just found out that not only does Google video have some full length movies on their site - I just downloaded the 1931 version of Dracula - but they now offer the option of downloading their videos to your ipod or PSP. That will make my commute more bearable.

And so here is your video of the day, courtesy of Google: Drowning Pool - Soldiers.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Raiders Cut Mike Williams

Today the Raiders cut former first round draft pick Mike Williams. Despite the fact that he's been nothing but a fat, slow, lazy, unproductive bust in the NFL, part of me still hopes that the Seahawks give him a shot. I can't help remembering how dominant he was in college and thinking that in the right situation he could rekindle some of his former glory. But the realistic part of me thinks he's too lazy to ever make it. Still, he's worth a spot on the practice squad.

Bigfoot Photo?


Has Bigfoot been spotted in Pennsylvania? Some 'experts' think that this picture taken by an automatic camera did capture a juvenile sasquatch. I remain far from convinced, but will admit two things. I don't know what this thing is, and it does look like a primate of some sort. I don't know why nobody has estimated it's size, but it doesn't look very big to me. Since I can't conceive that bigfeet exist, all I can conclude is that this is either a primate that somebody illegally brought into the country as a pet and then released when it got too big, or it's a hoax.

Halloween Movie Guide: Part 1

I'm going to go out on a limb here and start out by recommending Plan 9 From Outer Space. Universally considered the worst movie ever made, and directed by Ed Wood - the worst director of all time - this is the pinnacle of the bad movie arts. In addition to the b-movie standards of bad plots, bad acting, and bad special effects, this movie has so much more. Flying saucers dangling from visible strings, cars that change make and model during the same chase scene, scenes that change from day to night and back to day again inexplicably, an astroturf graveyard, and my personal favorite, since Bela Lugosi died during the filming, during the remainder of the film his part is played by Ed Wood's dentist, who attempts to conceal the fact that he is not Bela Lugosi by holding a cape in front of his face in all of his scenes. And it is precisely these things that make this movie so unintentionally funny and enjoyable. And to steal a line from Chris Rock, I've seen better acting from tough acting Tenactin.

From here I will move on to actual good movies. Today's category is vampire movies:

Unquestionably the best vampire movie I've seen is Bram Stoker's Dracula directed by Francis Ford Coppola. I've seen many other versions of Dracula, but this one has the best acting (despite Keanu Reeves), screenplay, special effects, and general ambiance. Way better than the Jack Palance Dracula.

Also worth watching is the first vampire film ever made: the 1922 silent classic Nosferatu. Movie making has come a long way since then, but this one is still worth a look.

A fictional story based on the filming of Nosferatu, Shadow of the Vampire is one of my favorites. The basic premise is that FW Murnau found a real vampire to play the role of Count Orlock, the vampire in his film. Naturally, this didn't work out quite as well as he had expected. I think this is a very unique and enjoyable film.

Interview With The Vampire was also pretty good, although a bit too long and it drags at points.

Stay tuned for more!

Ode To The Macadamia Nut

Is there anything in this world more delicious than a macadamia nut? Actually, yes, but that in no way means that macadamia nuts aren't also exceptionally delicious. The 2 main drawbacks, however, are that they are a bit pricey, and that once I start eating them, it's nearly impossible to stop. And today I am in good spirits thanks to the macadamia nut, for you see I just picked up a big can of them from Costco and hopefully I won't empty said can in mere days. Hopefully this can will provide me joy for a couple weeks.

Movie Reviews

Having seen and enjoyed the House on Haunted Hill, I decided to rent Return to the House on Haunted Hill when I found out about it. Let me give you a piece of advise: don't watch this movie. The plot was terrible, the acting was terrible, the music was terrible, the dialogue was terrible, the special effects were terrible. If I had to describe this movie in one word, I would have to say it was horrible. I know you thought I was going to say terrible, but I was over my quota on that word.

I started to question whether or not I'd made a mistake renting it about the time the opening credits ended. By the time they made it to the house, my worst fears had been confirmed. The barest of pretenses was provided to get the people into the house, and once there, the movie was reduced to disgusting blood and gore, cheap scare attempts, and completely stereotypical thug villains who did nothing but swear incessantly, point guns at everything and everybody, and generally pretend to be tough. Throw in some ghost T&A and you've got yourself one bad movie. And unlike other B horror movies, this didn't even make any attempts at being campy leaving absolutely nothing to like about it.

From there I moved on to the Transformers. I had been pretty skeptical about this one based on the previews I'd seen, but was pleasantly surprised. It had more story to it than the none I'd expected. The special effects were outstanding, except the transformation animations you couldn't really tell what was going on and while in robot form, the transformers looked too complicated. More like modern art than robots. It could have done without so much attempted humor though. John Turturo's character could - nay should have been eliminated entirely. A more serious movie would have been preferable. But these are relatively minor complaints in the grand scheme of things. After all, at it's core, this is a big budget movie about cars and airplanes that turn into giant robots and battle each other and destroy buildings in the process. And it delivered on what you want in such a movie. Great special effects, competent acting, a couple of super hot women, one of them even a genius, and just enough plot to tie the whole thing together and keep the cheese to a minimum. This one gets the Scott seal of approval.

Quote of the Day!

Prostitution is like a sewer in a palace. If you remove it, your palace will be full of sh**.
- Saint Thomas Aquinas

And in a rare double wammy, you also get a picture of the day as well.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Drinking Stories

Thanks to loyal reader Pat for sending me this list of the top 5 drinking stories of all time. My favorite is 'The London Brew-nami of 1814' which, in short, resulted in a flood of 1.3 million gallons of beer coursing threw the London streets, killing 9, inciting a riot, and more. Highly recommended reading.

Huskies

I got to go to my first Husky game of the season Saturday fully expecting to see a win against the struggling Arizona Wildcats. Things looked great in the first half as the Huskies rolled up over 400 yards of offense, but went to the locker room with only a 28-20 lead thanks to 2 fumbles deep in Arizona territory. In the second half, however, the Huskies decided not to play defense. Tuitama put up a team record 500+ passing yards against the hapless secondary in what is one of the greatest chokes I've ever had the misfortune of witnessing in person. I am once again left wondering why the Huskies can't seem to play a full 4 quarters of football this year. They were tied with Oregon after 3 before coming unglued. They had a halftime lead over Ohio State before a second half mauling. Ditto USC and UCLA. I think I've got to start watching only the first half of games.

Special thanks to WSU for exacting revenge on UCLA. Also special thanks go out to one WSU alum (who will remain nameless for his own protection) who even admitted that Cougs are classless.

New Vocabulary

My hatred of the Red Sox and their fans has been well publicised. It should come as no surprise to you then that I was absolutely ecstatic listening to the guys on KISW rip into them. It was a good solid 10 minutes of raw hatred and made me so proud. Anyway, the point of all this is that I was introduced to a new term describing these people which will now be added to my lexicon and you can expect to hear with great regularity from here on out. That term is Mass-holes. Use it regularly.

Packet Loss

For a couple weeks now my internet access has been degrading, dropping occasionally and generally running slower than it should. This was all punctuated this week by extended outages (several hours at a time), which in turn led to temper outages.

I wasn't happy that the only time I could schedule a technician to come out and look at it was 8-10 am on Sunday morning - one of my important sleep in days. I was less happy when he didn't show up until 9:55. He turned out to be a nice enough guy though.

Well, after an hour and fifteen minutes, all he was able to tell me was that there was a degrading outbound signal and significant packet loss. He was able to tweak some things and get me back online, but somebody is going to have to come back out later and make some more repairs. At least it is something outside my building so I won't have to be home at the time. Long story short, I am once again able to bring you mildly entertaining anecdotes, and hopefully soon I'll be able to bring them to you much faster.