Friday, May 14, 2010

Peas say it isn't so

I’m about to go check on Snopes. This whole “baby food diet” is a hoax, right? Like albino alligators in the NY sewer system, or people who think they’ve been shot in the head because of exploding canned biscuits. Nobody is really eating baby food to lose weight, right? Right?

I mean . . . ew. Shudder. Baby food. You’d actually have to get it near for face to eat it. Blurp. It’s all I can do to feed a baby that canned, smooshed beef without regurgitating. The smell! And those radioactive looking pureed green be . . . blugh. Gag reflex activated. You know why babies grow up so fast? So they can get away from the baby food! There’s a reason they try to knock the spoon plane away when it comes in for a landing. Even with if you do make the bi-plane sound effect.

And how do you sit there and eat a jar of strained peaches without feeling like a complete fool? That is just not possible. I mean barring having your jaw wired shut. But at that point you have other things to worry about. But if you’re old enough to drive to McDonald’s on your own and you’re eating Gerber’s? Wow. Just wow.

Soleil 100 Days

Soleil 100 Days: Okay, don't usually "share the love" on prize drawings. So please forgive me this one. Some of the prizes are just too tempting. . .

Thursday, May 13, 2010

You had me at "arrow"

I’ve been reading the first critics to come out on Robin Hood. And the consensus response seems to be, “do we really need another Robin Hood?”

Let me state first that I will be seeing this movie regardless of reviews for two reasons. First, a dirty sweaty Russell Crowe is one of my favorite things in the world to look at. And if he’s in a leather jerkin (please, god), it’s worth the price of admission. I don’t really care if he’s a giant douche in real life. He makes my ovaries light up like a pinball machine (ding-ding-ding-ding TILT!), and has ever since The Quick and The Dead. Yes, I love that movie and I feel no need to defend myself over that. Second, I love Robin Hood.

I have ever since I was a kid and saw the old Errol Flynn version (hmm, another antipodal d-bag, perhaps I’m sensing a trend). I don’t just love Robin Hood. I want to BE Robin Hood. Forget Marion. I wanna shoot arrows, run through the forest, sit around the campfire singing Greensleeves with my Merry Men, and rough up rich kids for their lunch money. In fact my deep-seated distrust of the wealthy may have its roots in Robin Hood of Sherwood. And Molly Ringwald movies.

It’s just an immutable fact of fiction – being the good guy should be cool. And Robin is just hella cool. He’s crafty. He’s good with sword, quarterstaff, bow and the one-liner. He’s the guerrilla-fighting underdog. And, if you’re lucky, he’s gonna have a kick ass accent. Oh, and he stands up for the downtrodden and poor.

So, really that question boils down to “do we really need another hero?” And the answer will always be, “if it’s well-done, yes.” Robin Hood should be reinvented for every generation. Though, truthfully, for me it doesn’t even need to be that good. I’m a sucker for a man in tights.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Oil be seeing you

The oil companies that are trying to dodge responsibility over the oil rig that blew up in the gulf are really making my slapping hand itchy. I live in Texas. And they screwed up my shore line. One, I love the beach. Two, I love shrimp. Three, I don’t need a three, because one and two are plenty enough. Your dog may poop on my yard, but you damn well better have a baggy handy to pick up the mess.

And if you’ve never been on a beach that’s been suffering from the effects of an oil spill, it is truly a mess. In a word, disgusting. First comes the smell. It really is an unholy, pits of hell smell. Then there’s the dead or in-need-of-rescue wildlife. But the real long-lasting annoyance for anyone who wants to go to the beach is the tar balls. They are these nasty, molasses-brown goo blobs that wash up on shore. If one comes into contact with your skin, they smear on. And won’t come off. You’re going to scrub your skin raw getting clean. And if you sit on one, kiss your bathing suit good-bye. Otherwise you’re going to be walking around looking like you somehow got the skid marks on the outside of your drawers.

All that means you have blown your beach tourism for the duration. Until somebody cleans up. And apparently, the guilty parties are too busy deflecting to pick up a mop. Because they don’t make enough money pumping oil to cover their cleaning tab. I’ve lost all kinds of respect for BP over this one, in particular. They’re all about the environment, until they spill oil all over it. Whoopsie. Somebody else’s problem. Exxon, you kind of expect this crap out of. Frankly, if the Obama administration holds BP’s feet to the flames over this one, they’ll finally have won me over. Big oil may be able to get away with fouling the landscape in some banana republic. But I’d kind of like to think they can’t get away with whizzing on our doorstep.

I'm with Cheno

Okay, the Newsweek thing saying America doesn’t buy gay actors playing straight characters. Um, somebody has told this guy that it’s all pretend, right? Hugh Jackman doesn’t really have metal claws that shoot from his knuckles. Morgan Freeman isn’t really God. And no matter how heterosexual two actors playing opposite each other are, they aren’t really in love. Unless they are Brad and Angelina. But that’s a different story.

Acting is successfully representing something you aren’t. Always. Tom Hanks usually plays Tom Hanks, in some version or other. But he’s doing things that Tom Hanks isn’t really doing. Saying things that he didn’t think up. He’s not even wearing his own clothes. And he does it really well. Meryl Streep completely becomes other people. And you believe her. They’re good actors. If a gay or lesbian actor can’t play straight. It’s not because they are gay or lesbian. It’s because they’re not a very good actor.

Every actor, like every singer or even every artist, has a range. Heather Graham I buy as a nympho-sexpot grocery store clerk. Heather Graham I do NOT buy as an astrophysicist. Not even a nympho astrophysicist. That is her range. I’d believe Neil Patrick Harris as gay (the Tonys). But I’d also buy him as a straight mad scientist (Dr. Horrible). That’s range, baby.

And as to the Newsweek article singling out Sean Hayes in Promises, Promises. Dude. It’s musical theater. No man comes off straight doing musical theater. It’s always graded on a bell curve. John Wayne would come off a little gay doing musicals. And people who love musicals know this. As long as the actor is cute and has a good voice (Sean Hayes is a “yes” on both of those) who really cares?

Monday, May 10, 2010

A night at the opera

I ushered for the Dallas Opera’s production of Moby Dick. A world premier, thank you kindly. Big D is getting full-time fancy. And this production is just so freaking cool I can’t even begin to tell you. There is digital projection of stars and water and ships, and rigging and ropes, and giant moving platforms, and a cabin boy flying through the air. None of it literally represented a ship at sea, but somehow it all came together to be more realistic that way. The way sometimes a remembered dream seems more real than an actual memory. It was just really exciting. You just kept thinking "can this get cooler?" And then it does! By the end, I was ready to wave my lighter, scream and throw devil fingers at the stage. Rock show exciting.

Also, I’m not in the “opera crowd,” so I don’t really know about these things, but are the opera guys usually that hot? There were two extremely good-looking fellas playing the Greenhorn and Starbuck. In fact, I’ve kind of got a crush on the Greenhorn. Cute and delicious voice – gotta love that. This was really far from my visions of chubby, sweaty Luciano Pavarotti-style singers. If this is the kind of eye-candy you get going to a night at the opera, I may be in like Flynn.

My only problem the whole night was a moment I nearly broke out in giggles. So, it’s all sailors and whaling, right? So, the sailors break out into a few bars of “Farewell and Adieu You Spanish Ladies.” Of course, for me, this automatically brings visions of Robert Shaw drunk behind the ships wheel, and Roy Scheider saying we’re gonna need a bigger boat. I don’t know how many opera patrons are big Jaws fans, but this girl definitely is. Hell, I was thisclose to joining in. But I definitely don’t think the Dallas Opera is ready for Rocky Horror sing-alongs. Though, come to think of it, they have those big screens projecting the words. A sing-along might actually work . . . Maybe I should bring it up at the next usher meeting. I could get usher of the month on an idea like that.

Sorry, guys. Turns out that it isn't an adventure. It really is just a job.

I was reading an article about immigration reform, and part of it was how the work had stalled because one senator had walked out due to his energy bill getting tabled. What? Really? How many jobs have you had where you’ve been assigned to a committee or project and then been able to just walk away because you didn’t like how it was going? Me, if I get assigned to project hell, I’m in for the duration. Never ending meetings, crazy ass decisions, killer deadlines and all. To the bitter end. But apparently, senators only work on things that ring their bells. And they can say, “Meh, not feeling it” and walk away. No wonder they can’t get anything done. What a bunch of prima donnas.

And my guess would be, they only “feel it” when it gets to be a big deal. Something where the media shows up. In the Myers-Briggs personality assessment, there’s a type called the “crisis manager”. These are the people you turn to when things go bad, because they’re calm and decisive under fire. While everybody else is losing their heads, these people are at the head of the pack, leading the way out of the burning building. Which is fantastic. Unfortunately, if you let them run the show, they’ll continually let things get to be a crisis, so that they’ll have a continuous string of hero moments. They’ll set the fire, just so that they can put it out. Bet you ten bucks that I know what about 2/3 of the congress’s Myers-Briggs types would be?

Why do we need healthcare, immigration, financial and national security reform? Because of all those years we limped along with a broken system, it wasn’t a big deal, it wasn’t critical, no cameras, no attention, no crisis. We’d rather pay our leaders to fix a problem than to keep problems from happening.

Here’s what I’d like to see: Someone walks into the houses of congress and says, “You 20 boneheads come here. You’re on immigration reform. Go in that room. Sit your asses down. And don’t come out until you have a plan. And the rest of you knot-heads don’t wander off. I have jobs for you too.” And if you get assigned something that’s not sexy, like farm bills or highway infrastructure, too freaking bad. Maybe we’d have those things fixed before they became sexy. Like before there’s wide spread famine or every bridge in America collapses. There’s a novel idea.

TIME: Quotes of the Day