Thursday, April 28, 2005

Seriously screwed up

OK, I pulled out Mariah Carey's debut album the other day because all of this Emancipation of Mimi rubbish made me think about the songs Mariah sang before she turned into a total and complete skank. But in looking at old Mariah Carey songs, I came across her cover of Def Leppard's "Bringing On The Heartbreak" which is another one for the so-bad-it's-so-damn-fine book.

Mariah covers 80s hair-metal. Who'd have thought it would work? Of course, it's the only thing on that CD that works. The rest is pretty much utter shit. But I've come to expect that from Mariah.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Buffy Buffy everywhere

Heidi and I spent the night re-watching old Buffy The Vampire Slayer episodes--some we haven't seen in forever. We watched "Out of Mind, Out of Sight" about the high school girl that no one saw so consequently, she turned invisible. Nobody writes high school angst like Joss Whedon, especially high school angst that isn't a bit overdone.

Then we watched "Doppelgangland" where vampire Willow comes out of her alternate universe. Best line of the whole ep--good Willow saying "That's me as a vampire? I'm so evil. And skanky. And I think I'm kinda gay!" Foreshadowing (intentional or not) at its very finest.

And finally, we watched "Hush" which is kind of the piece de resistance as Buffy episodes go. Featuring these fine creepy guys (The Gentlemen):



We also watched the audio commentary for "Hush" where Joss talked about wanting to create in the Gentlemen something akin to the Zuni doll from Trilogy of Terror--i.e. something that traumatized a whole generation of kids. I daresay he probably came close. Those guys are just damn creepy. And the way they float!Posted by Hello

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Beautiful people cheating

That pretty much sums up Closer which I got from Netflix and gave up on after about 45 minutes. I freaking hate cheating anyway, and these people were just too full of themselves and mostly too stupid to live. I figured "why waste any more time than I already have?" So it's going back to Netflix--the first movie I've gotten from them that I haven't finished.

I also watched Saw tonight which was not really a horror flick as much as a psychological thriller that was heavy on the gore. Not a bad movie all in all--but definitely not one I ever need to see again.

Next up in the queue (well, after Sagwa: Cat Tales & Celebrations) is Ultimate Kylie. Yes, I'm aware that I'm very weird.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Pink elephants on parade

Anna and I took a pottery class at the Octagon Center a few weeks ago called "Pair of Potters" where basically you take your toddler to class and you do all sorts of clay projects. It was pretty fun--what was most enlightening was how most of the parents totally took over from their toddlers and came up with these ornately sculpted and intricately glazed masterpieces. My M.O. was basically to let her come up with something that was her own thing.

Well, one week we made piggy banks and instead of doing a pig (you could do any animal you wanted) I was suddenly struck with some divine inspiration to do an elephant. Now, the thing you gotta realize is that when it comes to artistic ability, Anna's catching up fast to me. There's a reason I got a C in 8th grade art and then never ventured back into art class again. After it was fired once, we got to glaze it, and I asked Anna what color she wanted her elephant. Of course, the answer was "pink!" So here's our pink elephant. Not bad for a toddler and her art-impaired daddy.


Posted by Hello

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Rather be the pope

I'm glad that the Catholics have found themselves a new pope and I'm going to resist the temptation to judge his papacy before it even gets started (although that has not stopped a lot of blogs and news sites from doing just that.) I think what makes me most happy is that with the election of the new pope we can say good riddance to the completely ridiculous "Vatican-chimney cam" that seemed to be on all the 24-hour news stations while they waited for the white smoke.

The funny thing is that this whole pope thing just reminds me of that Prince song of the same name. Not one of my all time favorite Prince songs, but it's funny just the same because I'm waiting for someone out in the blogosphere or just in the internet in general to put video of Benedict XVI's first emergence after the white smoke came out and the bells tolled to that Prince song. Now that would be funny.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Virtual travel

For those of us on a limited budget (especially now that I'm probably going to have to buying a new car as my 1995 Ford Taurus is finally dying a slow, painful death) there's always Google Sightseeing. Is there anything that Google doesn't do right? Have fun, put in your address. Mine comes up, but I'm not stupid enough to post it here.

(via Ascent Stage)

Blondie as Muzak

OK, so last night at work, I'm on hold and suddenly I realize they've done away with the jazz music (and by jazz I mean good jazz, not this smooth jazz crap) they were using for the hold music and have replaced it with Muzak. And it's really too bad, because I found a lot of good songs through being on hold at work. But anyway, last night, I'm on hold and I hear a familiar guitar intro and suddenly, I'm listening to the Muzak version of Blondie's "Maria." And it pretty much boiled down to a lounge version of the song--what sounded like a guy at a piano plinking out the melody while a rhythm section played behind him.

I had to come home and listen to the original to get the bad taste out of my mouth.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Pink shirts

Ran across this article in the Iowa State Daily while I was on campus this morning getting my ticket to the Casey Stratton/Eric Himan show on at the M-Shop this week.

"A Serious Threat To Masculinity"

And in response to it, I think I just might wear a pink shirt to work today. I realize that it's mostly a college newspaper columnist being alternately goofy and inappropriately outraged, but I always resist any attempt to define masculinity or being a man as this thing or that thing but definitely NOT this thing.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

CD Spotlight -- 4/17/2005


Fleetwood Mac - Tango In The Night (1987)

I'm not exactly sure what drove me to dig this CD out--I think it might have had something to do with the fact that Throwndown.net had links to some Tango demos and remixes and it made me kind of want to hear the CD. Honestly, I haven't listened to this CD in ages. As Fleetwood Mac CDs go, it's a little bit too polished and glossy for my tastes. But I suppose I shouldn't be too hard on it, because without it, it's hard to say whether I would have ever started listening to Fleetwood Mac at all. That's right, you can trace most, if not all, of my Fleetwood Mac fandom to "Big Love."

And "Big Love" isn't even that good of a song, but it's very spring of 1987, so it has that in its favor. But overall, I feel like Lindsey Buckingham overproduced the album a little bit, and Stevie Nicks totally gets the short end of the stick--she only has 3 songs (none of which save "Seven Wonders" are all that memorable) and you can barely hear her at all in any of the other songs. (Notable exception: "Little Lies") I remember a comment from a review that I read around the time of the album's release that Stevie mutters "what's the matter baby..." on "When I See You Again" until the answer is completely obvious. And yeah, that song should have never made the cut. But you do have to cut her some slack--she was pretty strung out on cocaine at the time if I recall correctly (or perhaps it was Klonopin--it hardly matters.) It makes me wish that a solid rock song like "What Has Rock & Roll Ever Done For You?" would have made the cut instead of "When I See You Again." But really, I guess "What Has Rock & Roll..." sounds more like a Stevie Nicks solo track rather than a Fleetwood Mac song.

In any event, it's a fairly solid FM effort, but it sounds dated today. Posted by Hello

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Horror pop culture dolls, part deux

Now that I have the plush Alien chestburster, this is the next bit of horror movie pop culture I want to get for my office. It's the Zuni fetish doll from that cult classic TV movie Trilogy of Terror. I got this movie from Netflix and watched the part with the Zuni doll in it--anyone who around my age has to remember it. You know--gold chain falls off the doll's waist and it goes completely ape-shit ballistic on Karen Black. I remember being scared shitless as a kid by that movie--Ryan even more so--but as with most horror movies, I was oddly intrigued by it. So I probably watched that part of the movie a zillion times until I was desensitized to it.

While I don't think Anna is ready for the movie, I think she might be as intrigued by this as she is by "the scary guy" a/k/a the Alien.

I think I'd probably just be scared that I'd come home and find the gold belt off the doll someday. And then I'd feel this stabbing pain in my calves.

Posted by Hello

Sunday, April 10, 2005

One of the worst movies I've seen...

...and I totally loved the first one. Heidi and I suffered through Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason tonight. We've had it for about a week from Netflix but with me working the graveyard shift and all, it's been hard to find time to watch it. So we decided to put it in tonight, knowing full well that it got bad reviews and that the source material was inferior to the original's.

But I didn't think it would be as bad as it was. The problem with the movie was that Bridget is the heroine of the movie and we're supposed to be rooting for her, but all that happens to her is she gets put in one embarrassing situation after another for no apparent reason other than to make her look bad. It was obvious to me that the director (not the director of the original Bridget Jones' Diary) had not an ounce of respect for Bridget and just wanted to see her humiliated. Plus there was nothing driving the narrative at all, just a bunch of inane "will they break up and for what utterly ridiculous reason?"

I will say I enjoyed the part where they were in Thailand at least slightly, but it was still pretty much insufferable and that's really too bad as I wanted to like it so desperately. I don't frequently give movies a 1-star rating on Netflix, but I'm afraid this one has earned every last bit of it's 1-star rating.

The best part of the movie is without a doubt the Sting/Annie Lennox duet "We'll Be Together" which unfortunately, is not available for download from iTunes and I'm certainly not buying the CD soundtrack.
Posted by Hello

Friday, April 08, 2005

New music

I stumbled across some of the most amazing music I have heard in an incredibly long time over the weekend. The artist is Casey Stratton and I am just completely in love with his major label debut CD Standing at the Edge. It will undoubtedly be my CD spotlight coming up sometime soon, but until I get off the graveyard shift, it's going to have to wait. Nonetheless, I wanted to put it here because I'm pretty much listening to it non-stop. And don't believe that crappy old allmusic.com review that says the CD starts to limp toward the end--not true in the slightest. More about it later.

Add this to the fact that I also can't get enough of the new New Order CD, Waiting for the Sirens' Call, and it's been a great new music week for me.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Our new cat

Around the time of the presidential election, Jeff gave us this George W. Bush cat toy. None of our cats were really all that impressed with it and it got buried in with Anna's stuffed animals. Well, we just added a new cat to our mix, a stray who showed up at our back door looking for food. Because he came to dinner, we named him Sidney and decided to take him in. Well, last night I saw him digging in Anna's stuffed animals and was about to reprimand him when I saw that he had ahold of the GWB toy. I think he's going to fit in quite well around here, even if the other cats hate his guts right now.


Sidney -- The liberal cat Posted by Hello

Friday, April 01, 2005

OMG -- an amazing discovery

They've found water on Mars.

Oh, yeah, and by the way, your shoe's untied.