Friday, June 27, 2008

EW 100 TV Classics - The Trust Is Broken!,,20207076_20207079_20209139,00.html

Buff is ONLY #10! Friends is #9? Have you watched Friends lately? It does not hold up. It's just not funny any more. It is, in fact, unfunny. How can you call something "classic" if it has no staying power? Snit snit snit.

Given that The Simpsons were #1, I can find some marginal solace. I don't love The Simpsons. I don't even like The Simpsons. But how can you argue with a program that's been on that long? It ain't my cup of tea, but obviously somebody watches it. All I can say is, thank god it wasn't The Sopranos. I hate the goddamn Sopranos with every fiber of my being. And yet it was #2. In comparison to Buffy? Please. People get killed and they don't even dissolve into a puddle of dust. How can you compare? Whacked? Tony Soprano should end up on the business end of Mr. Pointy. Plus, the stupid Sopranos couldn't even get abbreviated seasons out on time. Joss Whedon was running Buffy and Angel simultaneously for 5 seasons. Oh. Oh! OH! I need to shake my fist at you. There! There! I'm doing it! Shaking! Shaking! Shaking!

EW, I can never trust your judgment again. Oh, sure, I may look to see what you have to say. But how can I look at you the same way? This is a sad, sad day.

The Middleman

Finally caught the first episode of The Middleman from ABC Family. Pretty dagnatious funny. If I had to put a label on it, I'd say it's Torchwood Lite. The premise is that all the stuff that happens in the comic books is true, and a young slacker girl is recruited to be the sidekick for a superhero called The Middleman (played by cutiepie Matthew Keesler) who fights things like Hentai tentacle monsters and genetically enhanced gorillas.

It's fast-paced, and you'd have to be pretty plugged in to catch all the pop culture references that whip buy. They riff on a lot of areas of nerdverse. Keesler has a great way with the snappy patter, and the heroine is smart and funny and (if it's not too retro to say) totally Girl Power in an up-to-date Nancy Drew sort of way. The special effects are kind of Dr. Who-cheesey, but that's kind of part of the fun. It doesn't anywhere approach the kink factor Torchwood, all the sexuality is of the kissy/flirty/hetero variety, but that makes it safe for the kids to watch. I watched with my 16-year old niece, and she liked that the heroine had a brain and wasn't just obsessed with shopping and boys, and could kick ass.

I'd give the premiere episode a B+. There were a few problems with the plot being a little jerky, and the characters only gelled late in the episode. But those seemed to be problems that could smoooth out after a few episodes. It could end up as a solid A if they capitalize on their assets. Fire up the DVR!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

I gotta have Faith, Faith, Faith

Got 'em! I have tickets for George Michael. Yes! Cannot wait. I'm going to be boogeying in the nosebleed seats, but I will be there. George will be able to feel the love.

And FYI, Girogios, darling, this is being billed as a "farewell" tour. Let's stick by that shall we? I'm not playing any Cher games. No farewell tour, final farewell tour, final, final, I really, really meant it farewell tour, or Hey, look it's me again, ain't I a dickens? farewell tour. It's goodbye, godspeed, love ya, mean it, goodbye. Small, intimate club dates or benefit concerts are permissible. But if I'm forking out for "farewell", it better goddamn be goodbye. Ya hear me?

But this concert presents two big sartorial questions. First, my usual, what to wear? Of course. This always comes up. You'd think I would have come up with an answer to this one by now. And it's a completely different genre of clothing than my Peacemakers, Western inflected kind of gear. I need something cute. For me. Cause looking for a straight man at the George Michael concert would be like looking for ice water in hell. Yeah, it would be nice, but it ain't gonna happen. And of course, for George. If he happens to spot me in my little seat 3 inches from the rafters, I want him to know that I cared enough to dress appropriately.

The other question, is more philosophical: to T or not to T? The t-shirts are always outrageously expensive. But it is the farewell tour (see above), and it might make a nice memento. Then again, the last thing I need is another t-shirt. Hoochita gear, I don't got. T-shirts, I got. And surprisingly, my social calendar yields very few occasions at which it would be appropriate to wear a giant picture of George Michael's face on my chest.

But if it's the butt shot from Faith, I'm definitely buying it.

Talking Trash

"It's fairly clear that in the modern age that there is a currency to celebrity, or celebrity is a currency, really. I've discovered that you can spend it in a lot of ways, or you can squander it. You can be taxed, as well. I really started thinking long and hard about how to use that currency as long as I had it." — Ben Affleck (;_ylt=AizLf7i8Nnj8TNc72._HHVFxFb8C)

Given the fact that I'm more or less convinced that Ben Affleck is a giant goob, I'm actually quite sympathetic that he was caught saying this big fat load of twaddle.

I hate it when that happens. You've thought about something long and hard. Weighed all the arguments. Formulated brilliant metaphors that express the essential truth of your conclusion. And the first time you get a chance to dazzle the folks with your brilliant metaphor, you can actually see it form a cloud of methane as it leaves your mouth. "Oh, my God! I am talking complete crap. Abort! Abort! Abort!" You are just spouting the most unbelievable line of crap in the history of crapdom. And if you're lucky, you know it. And you can figure out a way stop the Fiesta Del Caca as it congos out of your boca. Thus retaining some scrap of your dignity.

Worse is when you don't actually here yourself until you're finished. And the last word flies out of your mouth and lands with a splat like a giant cow pie. And you and your aghast audience just kind of stand and stare at what you just said. "Wow. That was bad." And you all just step away gingerly. As fast as you can.

But even worse when you're a celebrity. And there are cameras there. When I talk a load of shite, generally there are no recording devices around to capture me in all my glory. But somebody like Ben-boy might just talk a pile of crap as some sycophant nods and smiles. "Oh, yes. I know just what you mean. You're brilliant, Ben Affleck." And then he doesn't even know until you find a puddle of poop in some magazine with your name tagged to it. "Did I say that? Oh, hell."

Or maybe other people have more restraint, and actually resist the urge to let a bunch of half-baked mumbo-jumbo come out of their mouths on a fairly regular basis. Maybe other people aren't amazed that they ever thinks, "that sounded completely sane inside my head." Maybe it's just me. Me and Ben Affleck.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Baby Borrowers

I've been waiting for this one. The question isn't "Will I be watching?" It's "How much popcorn do I think I'll need?" Cause I'm going to be glued to the tube. No snack runs, no answering the telephone, no potty breaks. I don't want to miss a second. Teenagers who think they're ready to be parents? Delicious. And it's not just babies they have to take care of; there are tweens, teens and old folks too. I'm betting the tweens are going to be the funniest of the bunch. When it comes to pitching a real foot stomping, head rolling, you'remeanIhateyouforever! fit, the tween is the undisputed, heavy-weight champeen.

You have to know that the programmers at NBC are down on their knees thanking the gods for those Fertile Myrtle girls from Gloucester High. I wouldn't go so far as to think that television execs would stage a massive teen pregnancy incident as an elaborage PR stunt. But you know they have to be dancing in the halls at NBC. Not only will they get all the free publicity, but they also know that every parent of a teenager in the country will make this show mandatory viewing.

I issue a warning,,20207076_20207079_20207791,00.html

So, I've been enjoying the Entertainment Weekly "New TV Classics" list. We're through the first 50. And so far there are some I whole heartedly agree with (Moonlighting, Kids in the Hall, MacGyver, Project Runway), some that aren't my personal taste but will grant that some people can make a case for (Jackass, Grey's Anatomy, Dawson's Creek), and some I just wonder what they hell they're smoking in the back room at EW (Saved by the Bell? Screech? Really? Okay, it just barely made the list, but that it's even there is a headscratcher).

But what I'm really watching for is number 1. And it had goddamn better be Buffy. I am not kidding. If it is anyone other than Buffy and the Scoobies, I will not just go Medieval. I will go High Gothic, with flying buttresses. There is no, and I mean no, program more worthy of "classic" in modern television. The characters. The story lines. Some of them covering multiple seasons. The dialogue. The catch phrases. The issues they faced head on with more honesty than any other tv show before or since. The freaking musical episode. Buffy was a high water mark. Buffy was literature. EW better recognize.

Sam an' Ella, and Jim

I've been bringing my lunch to work consistently for a couple of months. I've only cheated twice. Yesterday, I just couldn't face the frozen meal. I needed something fresh. Something perky. Something with a little zip, a little zap, a little zing. Mmmmm. Salad.

And the cafe downstairs has my favorite taco salad ever. It's a veggie salad with black or pinto beans, lettuce, tomato, black olives, cheese and spring onions, with fresh salsa. It's a little bit of heaven.

Anyway. The problem was those tomatoes. I looked at them. I wondered. Should I? Surely, they wouldn't put tomatoes on my salad if there was any chance of salmonella? Surely, it would be bad for business to poison customers with tainted produce? And of course, the salsa. It's cooked. But I doubt it's cooked at a high enough temp to kill food cooties. Is it worth the risk? It is a damn good salad. Ah, well. Dig in.

So around 5 I start feeling a little wobbly. Not disabling. Just . . . off. In the stomach area. Not good. I muscle through the rest of the work day. But by the time I get home I feel like hell. Unfortunately, I'm a complete hypochondriac when it comes to food poisoning. So I can't tell if it's actually a hideous case of salmonella, where I will end up in the hospital. Or just a raging case of psychosomatic gastrointestinal distress, brought on by the fact that I'm completely neurotic and too lazy to get the years of psychoanalysis I so richly deserve. So, one or the other.

What do I do? What do I do? Do I drink a lot of water and try to flush the imaginary cooties out of my system? Do I chew some Tums and hope it will go away? Or do I go to the emergency room and hope that it really is salmonella, so that I don't look like a raging nutbag?

I finally decided to take my all-purpose cure all. I drank a couple of shots of bourbon and took a nap. All better. Jim Beam - kills the imaginary food cooties, makes you go night-night. Good for whatever ails ya.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Because the Bible tells me so

Really. I'm quite outraged. Barak Obama shouldn't be quoting the Bible and twisting it around to suit his political agenda.

That's Pat Robertson's job.

Tit for Tat

Is it just me, or are we in some sort of visa grudge match with the Brits?

First, they said that they wouldn't let Martha Stewart in their country -

Then, we come back with, well, then we won't take Boy George -;_ylt=ApgNTQDVv3YQIy21u9SAon1xFb8C

If you won't allow a friendly visit from our lifestyle guru/securities fraud convicts, we don't want your heroin addict/gender ambiguous pop stars. So there.

Actually, I think our West Side should call a truce with their East Side. Let the pond crossin' love-in begin. Let Martha visit her spiritual WASP homeland. And free the Boy. They have both done their time (And let's face it. Orange coveralls isn't an easy look for either one of them to pull off). Forgiveness, y'all. Forgiveness.

It's a fad

I've been following this one with the same slack jaw that everyone else has. The female high school students. The pact. The high fives. The 24-year old inseminator. The denial of the pact. At the very least, whether there was an actual plan or not, it's obvious that getting pregnant was kind of trendy at Gloucester High. Like banana clips or Hello Kitty backpacks.

Getting pregnant as the hot new thing to do. And if that doesn't give you a full on Scooby-Doo "Huhruh?" moment, I don't know what will. Where do kids come up with the weird ideas? Like when they think that they'll get sucked down the bathroom drain, or when a friend's 5-year old asked me when his Mommy had the baby if it was going to come out of her butt. What? Those questions that kids ask you where you get stalled just because you can't figure out where the hell they would get that idea.

But these are teenagers, a little old for the truly whacky ideas. So where would "Hey! Instead of getting belly button rings, let's all get pregnant! It will be soooo fun!" come from? Then I heard somebody in one of the interviews say the magic phrase - "unconditional love". They wanted babies because the babies would love them unconditionally. Ah ha.

Anybody who thinks that has never actually met a baby. Baby's do not love unconditionally. It's completely conditional. Feed me. Rock me. Make goo-goo faces to make me laugh. And change my poopy diaper while you're at it. Bitch. Now I will grant that a baby will love you instantly. Pop a bottle in their mouth - I love you. But they're going to want it again in a hour. And an hour after that. And again at 2 o'clock in the morning. All that "unconditional love" is going to take a lot of work.

I'm not baby hating here. Love the babies. I believe that babies are our future. But they are not easy. Babies are work. Which, if kids had to take care of a real baby on their own for about a month, most would hand the baby back after 2 weeks and ask for condoms. Eventually, babies will need you less. They grow up and can feed themselves, and take care of their own poop. They need less from you and the love is less conditional. But unfortunately, if you need unconditional love, it's really had to give birth to a 30-year old.

My suggestion to any teenage girl who's looking for unconditional love and thinking of having a baby - go volunteer at an old folks home. It will be very similar. They don't have teeth. Some of them are in diapers. You can read to them. Take them for walks. And they will love you because you're 15 and you're there. All you have to do is be cute and sweet. Way easier than a baby. Leave the tough stuff to the adults.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Radar Love Redux

One of the more strange consequences of the rising gas prices is that I now get to listen to the joys of the "Double Nickel". If you aren't fluent in codger, or don't have a handy copy of the "Old Coot to English Dictionary", the "Double Nickel" would be driving 55 mph. And my Dad is now a big, big fan.

Since car engines lose efficiency over 55 mph, you can actually save gas by not speeding. Or in some cases, not doing the posted speed limit. Dad likes to get out on the open road, and nail that cruise control down on the old Double Nickel. He saved over a third of a tank on his last trip up to Oklahoma City. So he was just cruising along at 55 in places where the speed limit ranged from 55 to 65. Just shaking his head over all the gas those people were wasting. They just must not know about the joys of the old Double Nickel. And of course, he'll tell me the story about how much gas he saved very seriously, so that I, his daughter will too know the great and powerful Double Nickel. Not that he's telling me what that I shouldn't speed. He just thought he'd share. Ok. Got it. Good to know. Thanks, Dad.

This is just Pop's latest obsession. Much like when he discovered the senior discount coffee at Jack in the Box - "You have to ask for it. They won't just give it to you." Yeah, Pop, but you have to eat at Jack in the Box to get it. "But your mother and I can split a Breakfast Jack and eat for $2.75!" Or that they sell 9-volt batteries at the $1 Store in a 4-pack. "They've got a 6-pack, but they're no good." But Pop, you're on a ladder replacing the batteries in the smoke detector every other month! "I'm retired. What else do I have to do?"

If they ever come up with a website called "Stuff Old Dudes Like", they should e-mail my Dad for tips. He's got a million of them.

The Kit Kat Klub

So, my niece's cat is staying with me. And if you are keeping count, that makes 2, count 'em TWO, cats. Because, yes, my sister's cat is still with me. I stand in evidence that you can become a crazy cat lady without even really trying.

Heidi cat is not really happy to be staying with me either. She's a little freaked. Lots of hissing going on. I should point out that she's a little pissy on her best days. She's a really pretty cat, but it's like she's got a permanent case of PMS. And staying with me has pushed her over the edge into mild psychosis. I'll walk into the room where she's staying until she gets used to my house (theoretically), and she runs around my legs. I sit down and try to be non-threatening. She comes over and makes all the come-hither-kitty moves -"Pet me! Pet me!!" I slowly move over to touch her - "Hissss!" I back off. "Pet me! Pet me!!" I'm move my hand - "Hissss!" I decide she's had enough togetherness and go to the door. "Meeooow?"

Mitzi cat on the other hand is not even bothered. She made one attempt to make friends, and got a hiss for her troubles. And generally, she's exhibited zero interest in furthering the acquaintance. "What evah. That bitch is craaaazy." "Yeah, I know, sweetie. But don't worry. She's going to stay in the guest room until she decides she can behave." "Well, good luck with that."

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Where's a good editor when you need one?

Taken from today's New York Times:
"As contentious as war itself"? Uhm. Or maybe not? If this country has gotten to the point where a piece of entertainment is debated as seriously as other topics that should be on the national agenda, like immigration, national debt, the death penalty or, oh say, war, where men and women are risking their lives every day for their country, we are in very deep trouble. I can't decide if this is emblematic of the fouled up priorities in America today, or just if it's just a really lousy lead-in on Mr. Itzkoff's part.

The full story is at ( It doesn't get much better after the first sentence. Oh, and typo in the last paragraph, by the way.

TIME: Quotes of the Day