31 March 2008

Cardboard Cycles

There's video above, FeedReader.
Here, French filmmaker Freres-Hueon tackles the light cycle sequence in Tron, the '82 sci-fi cult classic that follows the adventures of a computer programmer who gets digitized by a laser.
via Wired

29 March 2008

ConCERN from the Crazy

Walter L. Wagner and his trusty squire, Luis Sancho, are tilting at hadron mills. Bringing suit in federal court in Hawaii, the knight errant and his sidekick are looking to stop CERN from destroying the world!!!

Wagner, whose law degree from an unaccredited school doesn't allow him to practice outside of California, and Sancho, "who describes himself as an author and researcher on time theory1," want to save us from those out of control Swiss scientists!2

The lawsuit, filed March 21 in Federal District Court, in Honolulu, seeks a temporary restraining order prohibiting CERN from proceeding with the accelerator until it has produced a safety report and an environmental assessment. It names the federal Department of Energy, the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, the National Science Foundation and CERN as defendants.
CERN probably won't bother showing up. You know, 'cause they're not American.

Why in Hawaii? Because I suspect Wagner doesn't like to stray far from his grow lights.

Here's the thing: either the LHC is safe (it is) or when it gets turned on it creates a world-eating black hole (it won't.) If the latter is the case (it isn't) and said black hole doesn't immediately evaporate as predicted (it would,) the Earth gets destroyed, leaving Wagner and Sancho nowhere to live.

Either way we win. Either way we win.
1 Among his many studies are ones seeking to explain why he sometimes get the munchies before he takes his first toke, and whether it's possible to travel back in one's own lifetime by listening to "The Dark Side of the Moon" backwards, at half-speed.
2 Obviously I'm exaggerating for effect. Most of the physicists working at CERN are not Swiss.

28 March 2008

Friday Night Sketch War: Round Eight

I'd been holding off on reporting the results of this week's battle in hopes that Michael would make it out of the M*A*S*H unit, where he was playing grab ass with Hot Lips Houlihan, in time to post. He's been under the weather this week, and in Chicago, there's been a LOT of weather this week under which to be.

But then I remembered that even if he did make it out, he was meeting up with the brothers from the Water Buffalo Lodge for a Bowl-A-Thon. So hold back, I shall no more!

  • Coyote rises to periscope depth and fires a torpedo...
  • David and Leonardo DiCaprio drop depth charges from their battleship...
  • Red surprises the combatants with a fuel-air bomb dropped from a B-52.
That's right: someone new tossed her hat in the ring! Finally, PHX can represent with two mirth agents against the combined might of the Chicago comedy mafia! (I'll nag her to get her own damn blog next time.)

What's that you ask? What have we got this week? Bad gifts, guy talk, and people who dress funny!

FSW: Someone New Enters the Battle!

Wow. Someone (not the two people I was actually targeting, but someone) felt called out this week and decided to send in a sketch. It's her first shot at sketch comedy, but I thought it was pretty decent. She's homepageless at the moment, so I'm going to paste it below. Everyone, please give a warm welcome to our newest battler, Red. (I'm not going to include her email address as she suggested, because I fear she'd send money to all the deposed Nigerian princes who would contact her.)

The Meeting
(Two women and a man sit at a conference table wearing business casual attire. Ms Willson rushes in and stands at the head of the table, where we can only see her back. The other three get odd expressions on their faces, and glance between each other and Ms Willson. Smiles slowly creep across their faces.)

Is something funny? We have serious business to attend to, and since I am behind schedule we really don't have time to have this conversation. (Brianne raises her hand.) Yes, Brianne, do you have something to say, and is it pertinent to the meeting?

Well, I just wanted to tell you that--

--If it's not about the meeting, I don't want to hear it.

(Ms Willson ad-libs on sales figures and clients for a few moments. The others continue to smile.)

The fact that our sales numbers are down, is that something you find amusing, Charlie?

(Stammers) No, no, that's not funny at all. It's just that...

Just that what? Really, is this a case of Friday afternoon happy hour anticipation or are you all just on something?

(They stare at the floor, holding back snickers.)

Well, Ms Willson, what we've been trying to tell you, is that it's hard to focus on sales numbers when your dress is tucked into your pantyhose and we can see your underwear. Is today Monday or Friday because I can't tell from what you are wearing?

(Ms Willson turns away from the table to face us and looks down. Her dress is tucked into her pantyhose in front and the front or her underwear is visible. We can clearly read the word "Monday" printed all over them.)

Ah, well. Thanks Marie, and all, sorry I didn't let you speak sooner. (She heads to the door.) I'll be right back...

(The three co-workers burst into laughter.)


27 March 2008

FSW: An Awkward Birthday

Same spiel as every week. If anyone feels up to putting her sketch talents to the test, please email a link, or the body of your sketch if you have no place to post it, to sketchwar_at_dreamloom_dot_com. The results of the battle will be posted sometime Friday evening.

An Awkward Birthday
(Rob and Jean sit at a kitchen table with shreds of wrapping paper lying visible on the floor. He: mid 20s, wearing a plaid flannel shirt, jeans, and glasses. She: early 20s, hair in a ponytail, white blouse, jeans.)

I thought you'd like it.

How could...are you crazy? What would make you think I'd want...that?

I don't know. You're, it's just that --

(They freeze. A man in his 40s with touches of silver at the temples of his perfectly combed hair enters and crosses to stand behind Rob's right shoulder. He is dressed identically to Rob, though his shirt is neatly tucked and buttoned all the way to the top.)

It's just that you're a difficult person for whom to shop.

(Jean remains frozen, but Rob turns to look at his doppelganger.)

"For whom to shop?" Are you fucking kidding me? Look at her! She's already pissed off and now you want me to talk like an English professor in the middle of a fight?

There is no wrong time for good grammar.

Right. Well I think I'm going to take this one myself if you don't mind.

(Jean unfreezes.)

-- you're a hard person to shop for.

Hard? Hard how? Look around the apartment, Rob. Look over there on the counter. What do you see?

A pile of magazines?

Catalogs. They're catalogs. With pages conveniently folded so you can see what I like. Trust me when I tell you not one of those catalogs has anything like...that.

She has a point.

(Glares at Rob-2) But Jeannie, if I just get you something from one of those, it's like I put no thought in it at all. You might as well just take a card from my wallet and order it yourself. I thought I could surprise you with something different. Something personal.

(Jean freezes. A third man appears, dressed the same but with his shirt completely undone and hair mussed. This one is 17 or 18. He stands behind Rob's left shoulder.)

Dude! Tell her how long it took!

Not now.

Tell her, man. An hour, just standing there with that stuff slathered on.

I wish I was at work.

Were at work. You wish you were at work.

Nice hair, grandpa. You put Crisco in that?

Get a job!

(Jean unfreezes.)

You know I don't...do that. Why would you buy me a dildo?

That's just it! It's not just a dildo! It's an exact replica of me!


Tell her about the latex!

What are you talking about?

Intimate Expressions - the sex shop by the Greyhound station - they have this new thing where they take casts of--

--So now you're hanging out at sex shops?!?

(Rob-2 and Rob-3 both take a single, large step backwards.)

Just the one. I mean, no! I heard about it on the radio, is all. I swear. At Valentine's Day they were talking about it and I thought it'd be something you'd like. You always say how much you miss me when I work nights--

--So you thought you could give me a rubber--



--latex version of your dick and that'd be alright? That's what you thought I meant when I said I missed you?

I just wanted--

--I just wanted, finally, to give you some memento to remind you of me.

Seriously! Who talks like that?

Tell her about the hot chick who took the mold!

Guys, really, I think I've got this. Thanks for all your help.

I just wanted to finally give you something special. I screwed up. Again. I'm sorry. Here, I'll throw it out.

(Rob extends his hand. Everyone freezes. A woman who looks just like Jean enters and crosses to stand behind Jean. She holds out her hand.)

Oh hell no! If you're not going to use it, then give it to me!


Thank you d-bag; now I can be a success

Minor irritation for me today. Hopefully someday I can turn it into a bigger irritation for someone else. I'd added a widget to the blog a few days ago with a scrolling feed from the "scribosphere", a collection of blogs from screenwriters and spec monkeys. I also added my feed to the collection as I'm a spec monkey whose most frequent postings are on television.

Looks like someone took offense to my being listed, most likely because my last posting was not on-topic, and I was removed. But y'all know me...

I took a scan over the feeds and immediately recognized two for writers who do not write for film or television, one of whom has never expressed interest (on his blog; I don't know what's in his heart) in writing for either. I know this because I frequent both these writers' blogs daily. They're great, fun places to go and I've linked to them before. On top of not being screenwriters, both of these people frequently post on topics which are tangential at best to film and television. I didn't bother to check any of the other feeds listed (many of which I also regularly read and know to belong to screenwriters or screenwriters-to-be) because I'm congenitally lazy.

So as befits my petty nature, I've removed the widget from the page. As *more* befits my petty nature, if I ever find that I'm re-included in that collection (anyone can go to the site and recommend a feed) I'll be immediately demanding to be removed. And if it happens more than once, I'll make myself a boil on the maintainer's ass, forcing him to keep me off permanently. It wouldn't be a big deal to special-case the software (or just use an exclusion list) to keep feeds off that do not want ever to be included. But I hope it pisses off the keeper of the code.

I'm that fucking petty.

Realistically, I'm quite happy about this little irritation. I could write for me. I could write for fame and glory. I could write for money. But all of those reasons aren't enough to guarantee I'd overcome my laziness. But writing to FUCK someone else over? Writing, so I can become important enough to other writers that every fucking day someone submits my site and I can demand to be removed? Writing so I can make someone miserable? Now those are reasons to get up in the fucking morning!

Greatest Tech Exchange Ever?

Friend forwarded me a two-line IM exchange between himself and Project Manager. Initial testing has been underway for a few days and bug reports are trickling in to him on a web-based system with dozens of screens:

Engineer: Which cancel button is the tester talking about?
PM: The red one.

As opposed to a more definitive answer, such as one providing the url of the page in question, the PM answered "the red one."


26 March 2008

Jezz Fucker has the smallest tool in Hollywood

And some people thought that after the strike, there'd be no reason to watch Nikki Finke. Without her, I probably wouldn't have seen this until April 3rd. And that's not nearly long enough to build up the kind of intense rage this deserves.

Goddamn motherfucking worthless sack of goat shit. Douchebag goes to candy stores, finds the littlest kids, steals their candy and throws it into traffic.

Hopefully SAG has the stones the writers didn't, and shuts down Hollywood. Add one simple demand to the list already in place: fire Jeff Zucker or we don't deal with NBC-Uni. Besides, shouldn't turning The Peacock into a third-rate network, battling with the C-fucking-W for last place, be enough cause to can his sorry ass? The hell with SAG; GE stockholders should be demanding Zucker's head.

Or maybe Hova can have the bitch shot for his parting words.

23 March 2008

Talk to the bunny's hand!

Two days ago we celebrated the day when my peeps killed your lord. He was a damn rabble rouser, and we're renown for rejecting rousers of rabble. He seemed like a nice enough fella, but just wouldn't stop talking about the kingdom of heaven right in front of the centurions. Bad move, Nazarene. So we offed him. Technically, we outsourced it to the Italians and they executed the contract. Then they poured themselves a nice espresso and lounged about, waiting 1900 years for a damn train to show up.

Today - two days later - y'all get to stick it to my peeps (the first of many times throughout the intervening millennia filled with pogroms, inquisitions, and temptations) by celebrating the rebirth of your lord three days after his death. Two thoughts on this: first off, this is why you want a Jewish accountant; and this is why I don't support outsourcing. If Caiaphas had sacked up and done the deed himself, the dead might have stayed dead.

Anyway, this is as good a day as any to find your Jewish friends (not as essential as black friends, but you know you've got one or two around to defend you in court or treat your high cholesterol) and say "nyah nyah nyah!" That's how it was in my house growing up.

On Good Friday, pops would silently enjoy his salmon while moms was chowing down on a juicy steak. Between bites, she'd taunt him with peals of laughter and reminders that his lord was dead and gone. Come Sunday, while overindulging on chocolate, pops would blurt out "in your face" and "talk to the bunny's hand!"

22 March 2008

Sadly, I expect the same results in China


And I bet y'all thought my tourney was a big bust! The Zags down in the first round. My beloved Huskies down in the first round. What joy could remain?

The greatest joy of all, of course!


Oh, and I picked that one too! I'm currently sitting unbelievably high, in the 99.8th percentile on the national bracket. Of course, that's today. Wait until all those games go by where Connecticut *doesn't* win. I'm doomed. but I'm happy! Ratface is going home this weekend, too.


21 March 2008

Who's more famous now, Clint?

PZ Myers gets interviewed for a movie. PZ Myers goes to a screening of the movie with his family and a guest. Producer of the film has security ban PZ Myers from the screening.

Big deal. It is a free country and the producer of the "documentary" Expelled is free to bar admittance to anyone he chooses at a free, pre-release screening. Especially as PZ Myers is a biologist and Expelled is Creationist propaganda. I'm sad such propaganda exists; I'm sad science is so disrespected in this country. But...

Without all of that - the crappy movie, the ham-fisted expulsion, and (essential to the story) the disrespect for science - we wouldn't have the punchline. PZ Myers' guest. He presented his British passport when asked for ID. He was admitted to the movie with a passport that reads Clinton Richard Dawkins.

Here's Myers' report from last night, blogged "from the Apple store in the Mall of America" while the movie was still playing. Here's a story in the Times that gives the producers their say. But let's be real: these are the sort of folks who think Kirk Cameron and his croco-duck are the bees knees. Not exactly the sort of folks with a firm grasp of reality.

Friday Night Sketch War: Round Seven

After last week's two-man wrecking crew, this week we're back to three combatants. Still, there were some lingering personal, health, and weather issues keeping the warriors from fighting at peak form. See for yourselves as...

  • Coyote rouses the team to fight, fight, fight...
  • David tells it like it is...
  • Michael shows us it really is a wonderful war.
This week we've got the greatest coach ever, the greatest boyfriend ever, and the greatest ¿angel? ever.

Liveblog: UConn USD Overtime

Trying something new...there's a live blog below.

20 March 2008

FSW: The Pep Talk

I'd like to pre-apologize for this sketch. My week so far:

  • dirty, nasty unclean hands of a salad chef (I believe that was the source) gave me salmonella on Tuesday
  • I tried desperately to give it back, all of it back, on Wednesday (and today)
  • Got to work at 4am this morning so I could make it home in time to watch the tourney (when is this Highest of High Holy Days going to be made a national holiday?!?)
  • Watched a shitload of basketball (meanwhile, I frequently unloaded much shit)
  • Hammered out this sketch while watching WVU kick UA's asses!!! (I hate the Pac-10.)
So yeah, it's not very good. :(

The Pep Talk
(Locker room, we see the backs of a few players sitting quietly, heads bowed. Coach Lou Calipahounewski walks in with a clipboard and a disgusted look on his face. He stands in front of the players silently for a few seconds, shaking his head.)

That has got to be the most godawful half of basketball I've ever seen. What the fuck are you doing out there? Can you tell me that? Can anyone answer me that? What the fuck are you --

-- they're just too --

-- if I wanted you to speak, I'd ask a goddamn question! Did I ask a goddamn question?

(Tick, tick, tick)

Did I?!?

I think you --

No I did not! (He throws his clipboard; it shatters.) I didn't ask any fucking questions!!! Billy! You have those stats yet?

(An assistant scurries over with another clipboard and sheepishly hands it to Coach Lou.)

Three rebounds? We had three rebounds? Three boards to their 17. That makes me sick. Johnson? Son, you need to box out. What did we work on all week long?

(Tick, tick, tick)

Johnson?! You deaf, boy?!

Boxing out?

That's right, boxing out. Get up here. Get up here and show me how you box out!

(Johnson walks to the front of the room and stands next to Coach Lou. He gets into a defensive crouch, hands at the ready, and boxes out.)

No, goddamn it! No! How many times do I have to show you this?

(Coach Lou drops the clipboard and gets into a crouch, but it isn't a defensive one. He arches his back, puts his hands on his hips, shoves his ass into Johnson, and starts to grind. "Shake That Thing" starts playing in the background.)

That's right. That's the way to work it. That's how you box out.

(Coach gets more and more into it until finally Johnson, in a mixture of fear and disgust, backs away.)

See what I did there? I own the paint. I own the paint. You box out like that in the second half, Johnson. (Picking up the clipboard) Robinson! One assist. One assist to seven turnovers?!? Come on. That's not how we play ball. Thats not how we play ball at all. You've gotta protect the ball, Jeremy. Billy! Give me a ball!

(A ball is passed to Coach Lou. The clipboard goes flying. The ball goes flying. Coach Lou goes flying. He picks himself back up off the floor and holds the ball in his hands.)

Remember what I always say: two dribbles is two too many. Always look to pass. You can move the ball faster passing it than dribbling it. (Starts dribbling. The way he does it is more like he's spanking the ball for being naughty.) If you have to dribble, remember to keep your eye on the ball. Don't look around or you'll lose sight of that big, round (slapping it more forcefully) hard ball. And use both hands, don't just rely on your right hand. (He dribbles once with his left, but loses complete control of the ball and it smacks him in the face, knocking him back to the floor. He gets up and passes the ball off screen with as limp-wristed a motion as can be imagined.)

Two minutes, Coach.

Alright guys, gather round.
They said we wouldn't win a game and they were wrong. We won that exhibition game against Lazy Pines back in September.
They said we wouldn't win our conference tourney and they were wrong. I knew once that blizzard hit the 94 the Governor was going to declare a state of emergency and shut down all the roads to Fargo.
They said we wouldn't win the play-in game and they were wrong. Though that bad shrimp in the other locker room was a one in a million break.

Look fellas, we've been through a lot. I want to tell you about another fella I know who went through a lot. Fella by the name of George. Now I'm going to tell you something I've kept to myself for years. None of you ever knew George. He was long before your time, but you all know what a tradition he is. One of the greatest natural athletes I've ever seen. Could jump straight out of the gym, run all day, and still be getting into trouble when everyone else was ready for sleep. But George wasn't just an athlete. He was a student, always questioning, always curious. Well, curiosity finally caught up with George one day. The last thing he said to me was "eep eep eeeeep! eep eep eeeeep!!!"

Now I'm not a religious man. I don't know if there's a heaven or hell, or a separate monkey heaven and monkey hell. But if there is - I mean, either the one heaven and hell for everyone, or possibly the separate monkey heaven and hell - George is up there watching. So go out there with all you've got and win just one for the monkey.


17 March 2008

God Bless Yoga Pants

Went to the gym this morning for the first time in ages. I thank the Claritin. I head into one of the workout rooms to do an ab workout and take a gander around at the talent. So very much easier to work out when I've somewhere for my eyes to wander. In this room there's a hot asian in her late 30s or early 40s and a cute white girl in her 20s. Twenty-something smiles and seems to be checking me out. Odd. Wouldn't have pegged her as being into fat, bald, pasty dudes. Maybe she's just committing my features to memory for an anticipated future engagement with a police sketch artist.

Anyway, I do my thing for five or ten minutes before moving on to lift. As I'm exiting the room, I glance over and see twenty-something stretching. Nothing elaborate, she's just bending down to touch her toes...oh, nice ass! I can walk slower. She bends a bit further and...

God bless yoga pants.

The only things left to my imagination were the exact shade of pink - I'd like to think ruby red grapefruit - and whether she waxes or shaves. Holy crap. In the immortal words of Oscar Hammerstein II:

O what a beautiful morning
O what a beautiful sight
She's got some beautiful labia
Thank god her pants are so tight.

15 March 2008

FSW: Red's Welcome

Apologies for being late with this one; it had to go through a little more processing than usual. It's not as funny as some weeks, but it wasn't written with that solely in mind. I hope you all enjoy. David's had his up since yesterday here. It's very funny, especially if you know someone like the protagonists or, sadly, are someone like the protagonists. Michael did not put up a sketch this week and is sitting on the sidelines with some family business. My best wishes go out to him and his family.

For those "keeping score", David and I played shuffleboard instead of fighting this week. He beat me when the sound of helicopters gave me a flashback.

Red's Welcome
(Long queue at the Pearly Gates. At the front of the line, dapper in his tux, stands Leo "Red" Rush, a man's man of 84 years. Hale and hearty, the tux strains against the rejuvenated body within. St. Peter sits at the desk.)

Red! Welcome. We've been waiting for you.

Oh good! I wasn't sure which way I was going.

It was never really in doubt up here.

Long life, you know. A few, er, indiscretions and dalliances. And I might have been a little loose with my tongue a few times.

Well fuck, Red! Where the hell you think you are here? A tea room?

I uh, didn't expect you to...did I just hear you right? Did you say --

-- fuck? Fuck yah, I did. I was a fisherman, Red. How did you think I'd talk? Like a Hallmark card? C'mon. I've got a break due, why don't I show you around the place and give you the skinny. Everyone, I'm taking five. Cherubs should be by with honey roasted peanuts and fresh baked cookies in a minute. If you're a little tired from your death, ask for a moist cloth. They're very refreshing.

(Peter and Red head through the gates and into heaven. It looks like a pristine German village, so clean as to appear brand new. Innumerable happy people stroll, sit at cafes, and laugh with friends.)

Heaven looks like Bavaria?

Think of it as an infinitely large Epcot Center. I thought you might like a Märzen after your trip.

(Peter puts out his hands and two tall, frosty beers appear. He hands one to Red and takes a long draught of his own.)

You've got a little...there's...St. Peter, you've got foam in your beard. (Peter wipes off) I've got to tell you, this isn't what I was expecting. All my life...I just figured there'd be halos and harps and angels with wings.

We've got that too, but who wants to hang out with those types? You were in the war, right Red?

Yes sir.

You'll find things are a little different here. If you'd like, you can join a league and play against your old enemies. We've got ping pong, softball, soccer, volleyball, actually an infinite number of games. Usually the old warriors get a kick out of that.

There are Nazis in heaven?

Not exactly. There are quite a few former soldiers, though. You know, now that I think about it, you might enjoy this. See that movie theater?

(Sign on the marquee reads: "Hitler Boiling In Oil: Shows start every 15 minutes")

PETER (Cont)
It's run longer than "Cats".

Peter? You know what I'd really like is to look in on my family. Is there any way to do that?

Sure. Come over here. We've got these kiosks all over the place. You just type in the name of the person you want to see and they pop up on the monitor. You can even send them messages.

I can?

Sure. Here's the icon for Ethereal Messenger. You click this...no wait, you have to double click. Sorry. We just changed over from Macs to Windows. There's a little adjustment. Damn Apple store sold us a bunch of computers and promised on a stack of bibles they'd run all our software. We installed the EM software on all these shiny new boxes and it just wouldn't start. Boss said he'd had it with Jobs and "that whole bunch of clove-smoking, beret-wearing, shiny happy lemmings." Called up Gates and put in the order the next morning. Good thing that guy gave all that money away or we'd be stuck running Ubuntu or something. Good luck getting support for that!

Anyway, here we go. Who'd you like to message?

My grandson Michael. How does this work?

You can just click one of these smileys and he'll get a warm, protected feeling for a minute. Or you can type a message here and it will be delivered the next time he dreams. You want to type it?

Yeah. Thanks, Peter.

(Red types his message on the clunky, but fully functional computer: "You're a good boy, Michael. I've always loved you. Granddad.")


12 March 2008

How they got here: Winnie's Cameltoe?

In my continuing public service to all y'all to find out how people find our little corner of the web, I bring you today's most notable google search term:

crotch pics of danica mckellar

Alright. Maybe not the most outré, but I think it's at least a bit relevant that this particular search for sweet Winnie's nethers was executed at Ft. Huachuca, here in sunny AZ.

At first, I was upset that my tax dollars were supporting weird sexual fetishes. Then I realized that as the home of the US Army Intelligence Center and School, maybe this was a covert intelligence gathering search...

Nah. Just someone looking for some pineapple!

07 March 2008

Friday Sketch War: Round Five

Our hearty meals digested, our concubines put aside, we stepped up to the dohyō. Again, three of us had come to the ceremonial ground to battle for supremacy. The yobidashi brush the sand smooth where we had sat as we step up to the shikiri-sen.

  • Coyote is terrifying in his non-traditional hemp mawashi. He strikes first...
  • Michael sports a bright red and yellow mawashi and cuts a noble figure...
  • David looks as though he's been woken from a deep slumber by a ringing phone in his pale blue mawashi...
This week we've got hippies, new jobs, danger at 3am, and secrets too frightening to reveal. Come revel in our words!

06 March 2008

FSW: Fight the Patriarchy

I'm firing off an early attack in an attempt to draw First Blood. Or maybe to draw Rambo: First Blood Part 2. Should any new grapplers feel up to entering the Sumo ring of sketch war, please email a link to your submission (or its full text if you are homepageless) to sketchwar_at_dreamloom_dot_com.

Fight the Patriarchy
(Two hippies, Breeze and Anton, sit at a card table outside Whole Foods. Scent lines of patchouli and pot wafting from their hemp clothing and unkempt dreads are almost visible. A middle-aged man walks away from the card table with a pamphlet Breeze has handed him.)

You shouldn't let your parents control your life.

It's not like that. I want to be an engineer.

That's because you've been indoctrinated. Why else would you want to rape Mother Earth?

Dude, I don't want to rape anything. I just wanna build dams and bridges.

Dams block the natural flow of Gaia's tears. Bridges support the war machine. Engineering was invented by white men so they could fight wars and enslave women and minorities.

C'mon. It's just cool to build stuff. When I was a kid, I'd play with my Legos for hours, building space stations and cities, and imagining all the people who lived and worked there. Didn't you do that?

Plastic tools of the patriarchy! With all those round...pegs forced into innocent holes by grubby male hands!

Whoa. You've got some serious issues.

Sorry. It's the rape culture. It gets to me.

There's a tribe in the rainforest where the women are in charge. They don't even have a word for war. They don't have a word for yellow either, but that's okay. They call it "color of the pus from a scorpion sting".

(A well-kept woman in her 40's walks up to the table and glances at the material.)

Do you want to sign our petition?

What's it for?


It's a petition requiring all the schools in the district to use paper made from locally grown hemp. It's biodegradable, renewable, and supports small farmers instead of evil international paper corporations.

Uh, maybe I'll sign on my way out...

(Woman rushes away and into the store)

Did you forget why we're here?

I just...Tuesday it was to stop Japan's whale hunt, Thursday it was to rename MLK Boulevard to Rosa Parkway --

-- MLK was a tool of the hegemony! --

-- and yesterday it was to require Herstory be taught in grade school. I just lost track of the day.

You know, there's a tribe in Laos that doesn't have calendars or clocks. We could learn a lot from them. They have a wise-woman who tells them when it's time to reap and time to sow. She uses her menstrual cycle to determine everything. I'm thinking of spending the summer there. Or maybe on a walking tour of Nepal.

(As Breeze has been jabbering, a 20-something dude in a pink shirt with popped collar has approached.)

Bethany? What happened to your hair?

Uh, um, Chad. It's, great to...see...um. Anton? This is Chad. He...I...we went to high school together.


So I was talking to your mom at the club yesterday. She said you weren't going to Rome this year 'cause you just wanted to veg on the beach. You going to Cannes, or just hanging in the Hamptons?

(Embarrassed in front of Anton) The Hamptons.

Coolio. Me too. Dakota and Bryce'll be there, too.

(Failing to hide her excitement) Bryce? Oh...uh, whatever.

Ai-ight. Peace out. See ya later.

(Chad struts off.)

Don't say a word.


Not a word!

Rachel McAdams in Purple

There's an Amazon link above, FeedReader

One of my favorite possessions (which is not currently in my possession, but my friend's as he keeps forgetting to bring them when we get together) is the original run of Black Orchid. I haven't read it in almost twenty years (though figured I would when I got it back before reshelving it) but still remember Dave McKean's stunning artwork, the insane, foot long ears he put on Bats' cowl, and this one scene, early on with a bomb...

I won't spoil it. It was memorable.

Anyway, it appears that one of my favorite imports from the Great White North also has a soft spot for Black Orchid. Rachel McAdams told MTV that she'd like to play the titular heroine.

"I just read this book Black Orchid and it’s a really interesting character," the actress said. "She’s a superhero that’s a flower. I don’t know if that would work or the audiences would be interested in that, but she was kind of cool."

Not just a flower, but a plant/human hybrid able to alter her appearance and voice, regenerate — even fly. And one that, although relatively unheard of, comes with a pretty recognizable comic pedigree, McAdams reminded.

"I like all the Neil Gaiman stuff. It’s great," McAdams said of the comics god who reinvented the character with a limited series run in 1988. "I think it’s really visually so dynamic and would work really well."
Maybe instead of wasting money on another shitty Superman movie (Brandon Routh? Really?) or cobbling together a miscast, garbage Justice League movie in a frantic reaction to Marvel's upcoming Avengers flick, Time-Warner should do something good.

via Gaiman himself

05 March 2008

Watchmen Pics!

I can't believe Watchmen is a year away! Then again, after 20+ years of waiting, I can't believe it's only a year away!

Always a fan as well as a director, Zack Snyder's got a new post up at the official production blog. Photos of most of the principals in costume. I had a little nerdgasm from the pic of Rorschach before. Imagine how I reacted when I saw this set of five! And let me tell you, as every prior production shot has shown, the set designers have nailed the universe. Archie looks wicked cool behind Nite Owl.

But don't take my word for it. Click through.

As much as I'm looking forward to The Dark Knight and Iron Man this year, that pales in comparison to the tantric delight I'm building up for Watchmen.

It's a portable model, Mary Kate!

There's video above, FeedReader

Will Arnett. He's a freak, man!

Movie Quote Quiz - Answers

All the answers are in comments on the quiz, but for the more sane amongst you who aren't following those comments, here we go.

  1. Angel Heart, solved by John.
  2. Gattaca, solved by Carrie.
  3. Rounders, solved by Carrie.
  4. Some Like it Hot, solved by John.
  5. Giant, and no one got this. Rent this movie!
  6. Camelot, solved by Sme.
  7. Guys and Dolls, and no one got this. Some of you are going to have to hand over your musical theater appreciation club cards.
  8. Aliens, solved by David. Please note that a) I think this movie might be better than its predecessor and b) I really wanted it to be a Paul Reiser quote. Think of me what you will for those two facts.
  9. When Harry Met Sally, solved by David.
  10. Joe Versus the Volcano, solved by no one. No joke, this is a seriously underrated romcom. Note that this was the Meg Ryan portion of the program.
  11. Network, solved by John.
  12. Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, solved by Sme. Seriously folks, me? Pass up an NPH quote?
  13. Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter, unsolved. I really like Tony Randall, that's all there is to it. This one was crazy hard, sorry.
  14. Rocky, unsolved. Remember when Sly could *write*?
  15. Serenity, unsolved. And this one killed me almost as much as G&D. Really? No Whedon fans read *my* blog? And none of you thought the "Dong-luh mah?" was a little odd? A wag of the finger at all y'all! :)

Si Demain...

There's video above, FeedReader
Okay. I have to admit I have a weakness for power ballads. I think I just happened to fall into that sweet age spot that thinks Meatloaf and Bonnie Tyler and their comparables are the bee's knees. No matter how many times that Bat comes out of Hell, or Bonnie Eclipses her Heart, I'm there.* So when I saw this video...man, I was in power ballad heaven. I'd never heard/of Kareen Antonn before this, but I'm going to seek her out. She obviously has taste, and I like her voice a ton (none of that nasty "diva" oversinging.) It doesn't hurt that she's a hottie, either.

via Pamie.com

* You know, now that I think about it, maybe it's not power ballads I love, but Jim Steinman songs. I can even tolerate Celine Dion's rendition of "It's All Coming Back to me Now", even though Meat's kicks its ass.

My Giant White Whale

After back surgery, which was intended as an outpatient procedure, the first thing I noticed upon regaining consciousness was the absence of back pain. After years of agony and months of crippling spasms, it felt like nothing. Okay. That's cool, but how about walking? For the first time ever, both my feet pointed straight ahead as I took those first tentative steps. Steps toward freedom, steps toward home. Steps toward the bathroom.

Do you know what you have to do in order to be released after surgery? Pee. After hours under anesthesia, hours with a catheter taking care of your every urinary need, it's time to be a big boy again. Walk ten steps, step up to the plate, and... Here's the deal: it's a go/no-go decision based on your ability to go/no-go.

The last time I was in this hospital I'd had my gallbladder removed. Nasty little bugger, it wouldn't let me eat like the Tudor king I've always aspired to be. I'd scheduled a lap choly for early January, but that stupid sac had ideas of its own. It wasn't going without a fight. The Monday morning between Christmas and New Year's it had me on the ropes and I had to be admitted to the hospital and the soothing delirium of a morphine drip. Two days later - two weeks earlier than planned - that vile bag of bile was permanently removed from my body. And then began the road to release. Could Little Richard pee?

I thought I was doing okay. By the second night after surgery, I'd peed a few times. Things were going great, right? The doctor did not agree. So he had one of the two very lovely night nurses with whom I'd been unsuccessfully and unsoberly flirting come into my room and take an ultrasound of my bladder. It's an especially large bladder - the blame for which I place squarely on my father's shoulders for all those long, meandering car trips in my youth - and even though I'd let loose a goodly amount, the doctor wanted more. Lovely Night Nurse Number Two had the solution I'd never have proposed to a problem I'd never have acknowledged: a straight catheter. She lubed. She inserted. I emptied. I did not flirt with her again during my stay.

So as I walked toward the bathroom door, ecstatic that my feet pointed the way and my back pain was but a memory, I pondered my giant white whale: my small white penis. Could I pee? Frightened of what I might find in that small, tiled room, I glanced back at my wife. She looked on nervously. I opened the door, stepped across the threshold, closed the door behind me, and assumed the position. It was do, or die of embarrassment. I stood for an eternity. I thought of waterfalls. I thought of rivers. I thought of Billy Ocean. I counted ceiling tiles. Finally...ahhhhh.

04 March 2008

Welcome to Woody!

The votes are in:

Benchley - 4
Wodehouse - 3
Whedon - 1
Corinthian - 1

Add in the super delegates and...Wodehouse edges out Benchley by the tip of his cute little brown nose.


While Werner Von Braun and his oompah band calculated payloads and trajectories...

While Alan Turing and his merry enigmatic men were playing with bombes at Bletchley Park...

While Robert Oppenheimer herded cats at Los Alamos (and Feynman taught his computer to play tricks)...

MI5 chased stardust.

The government rented an apartment for de Wohl in a hotel in London's exclusive Park Lane. On paper headed Psychological Research Bureau, he reported on clients and wrote horoscopes for Allied and Nazi leaders.

But de Wohl's predictions were often so vague it is impossible to see any military use. Take his December 1942 prediction for seven months later: "The German astrologers must pray that enemy action does not force the Fuehrer into making important decisions within the first eight days of the month (of July), as this would lead to great disaster."

02 March 2008

New Puppy!

Here's the new little guy, Parker's new baby brother. He's still got no name, unfortunately. There are a few options, sticking with our preference of naming for authors. So, pipe up in comments and vote for your favorite name to match up with (Dorothy) Parker:

  • Benchley
  • Gaiman
  • Whedon
  • Wodehouse
There are big advantages to the first and last - Park & Bench is pretty cute, and with Wodehouse we can also call him Woody and catch my favorite nebbish in the wake - but I like them all. Vote!