See, this is why LiveJournal users freak me out.
That's the entire post.
"You're not alone.
Don't pretend to be."
"Lost" is such a great show. I especially liked the
scene last week where
Hurley had to bury the islander killed by that psycho from the other side
of the island.
"Scott Jackson worked for an Internet company in Santa Cruz. He won a
sales prize: a two-week Australian vacation, all expenses paid. He was a good
guy. Sorry I kept calling you Steve, man.
I think I know what it all means. They'll eventually go to the other side
of the island, and living there they'll find......
Um...amen, I guess. Uh...I
don't know how to end these."
Or, the island has a virus that's making them all super-paranoid,
super-strong, super-violent - and prone to flashbacks.
But it'd still be cooler if it was Gilligan.
Jack in the Box's new Ciabatta Chicken...
is really good.
Note: most of the links in this blog post
have expired - but not the last one!
I feel kind of bad. Someone searched Google for the comic strip where
Cathy gets married - and instead they found my web site, linking to the
one where Cathy
gets tied up by Dickie the cockroach.
So, okay - here's the one where Cathy gets married.
And the one before it, where Irving reads his wedding
vows off his laptop.
("I finished writing my part on the way over but I couldn't get it to
And the one where the bridesmaids strew the
shredded photos of Cathy's ex-boyfriends [this link also still
the one where
complains about her
wedding dress, the one where Irving makes Cathy a valentine's
And the one where the "Comics Curmudgeon" columnist screams "Please make it stop."
I loved the movie Sideways. Easily the best movie from 2004...
A clever delight.
And here's something I learned.
If you write a novel, don't be afraid to give the manuscript to a
woman you meet in the wine country. Even if you're not sure
you'll ever see each other again - that moment of connecting ought to be
The comic book guy on the Simpsons finally has a name.
"My name is Jeff Albertson," he says in Sunday's episode.
"But everyone calls me comic book guy."
Comic book guy - er, Jeff - accosts Ned Flanders
asking for some video footage of a drunken Homer Simpson dancing
with an inflatable octopus. Then he uploads it to his web site,
"Dorks Gone Wild . com." ("Best website ever.")
"Stupid internet," grumbles Homer. "Whole world laughing at me."
It turns out it's a real domain, containing the very footage from the
Registered to the Simpson's owners, Twentieth Century Fox Film
Corporation, 10201 W. Pico Boulevard.....
Comic book guy's t-shirt read:
"Nerds do it rarely."
Frank felt cold chills run up and down his spine. Here was
that thrilled him as nothing else had ever done, something of the spirit
of men who brave the unknown terrors of the deep. Perry was one of
them. At the moment Frank admired the diver more than anyone else in
the wide world....
That's from the original 1938 edition of Hardy Boys book #17 - "The Secret
(Page 97.) I'm enjoying the gushy children's-literature prose...
Back at the car Frank turned to his companions.
"Interview that officer!" Joe finished impolitely.
I hate Clint Eastwood.
"Sometimes killing is okay." That was the basic message of
Unforgiven. Oh how the woman loved her gun-slinger husband, the
titles remind us, immediately after a final round of righteous
"Sometimes killing is okay." That's what I took away from Mystic
River, too. My friends said I mis-read the ending, which left me
upset over the sympathetic treatment of the killer.
Oh well. Million Dollar Baby has a nice cheery title.
Maybe Clint Eastwood's latest movie will change my mind...
Come to think of it, there's even a justifiable-homicide theme in
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.
Eastwood has got to stop doing his own music...
It's a geeky Friday night.
I read Wired magazine's profile of Firefox uber-geeks Blake Ross
and Ben Goodger - and then found my way to Ross's
laughs at a college "social network" application that
exposed the home phone numbers of 1.6 million college students.
William Shatner's new
music album is amazing...
Guest vocalists include Joe Jackson, Aimee Mann, Ben Folds, and Henry
The 38 States of America?
A geography professor re-drew the state boundaries of America, grouping
population centers and transportation into just
not as crazy as it seems. The original boundaries were based on
19th-century landmarks like rivers and mountain ranges, or simply long,
straight latitude lines. Re-drawing the boundaries based on contemporary
data could save billions of
dollars each year by consolidating state government costs and
re-uniting cities currently straddling two state lines.
Note: It's extremely unlikely this will ever happen.
This Sunday's comics page featured a particularly surreal Pearls Before Swine.
I last blogged
about it when the character Rat introduced his own comic strip, "Dickie,
cockroach." (If you say something stupid, Dickie ties you up and
duct tape over your mouth.) Dickie was last seen addressing the
comic strip Cathy...
strip the characters are mourning the death of Rat when cartoonist
Stephan Pastis suddenly gives it a strange twist.
And then it all comes together...
Those wacky geeks.
If you're browsing the web with the FireFox browser, you can
add "Extensions" that give it special capabilities. One geek
coded up a special feature
that's "Useful for surprise visits from
Tapping two keys closes every open browser window, and replaces it with
"which, to the casual observer, appears to be yet another of your tireless
efforts of productivity for your employer.
"The default setting is a Google search for 'increasing workplace
And the name of the program? "PaNIC." It cleverly disguises
itself within your browser as the "Productivity and Networking
Information Component," with the description:
"Enhances workplace productivity."
"Some people call me the space cowboy.
Yeah! Some call me the gangster
Some people call me Maurice
Cause I speak of the Pompatus
Steve Miller's "The Joker" borrowed a word from an obscure 1954 R&B hit by
the Medallions' vocalist Vernon Green. "You have to remember, I was a
very lonely guy at the time. I was only 14
years old, I had just run away from home, and I walked with crutches."
Scraping by singing songs on the streets of Watts, he composed "The
Letter", which included the word "puppetutes" (alternately spelled
"pulpitudes") meaning: "a secret paper-doll fantasy figure
who would be my everything and bear my children...."
And now, a special announcement from Destiny-land...
Not that there's anything wrong with that...
Click the image for the story.
In "Coach Carter," Samuel L. Jackson challenges one of his players by
asking what his greatest fear is.
After the team is sidelined to the library, Coach Carter's question
an emotional answer.
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is
that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask
ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be? You are a
child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is
nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel
insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were
born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just
in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we
unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are
liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates
It's a poem by Marianne Williamson, often mistakenly
attributed to Nelson Mandela
"Blah blah blah Acck! Slap! Bye bye!!"
I've gained new respect for the comic strip "Pearls Before Swine." Last
Sunday Dickie the
into the Cathy comic strip, and slapped duct tape over Cathy's mouth.
week's Sunday strip continues the saga.
"Dickie!! What have you done...?"
"Blah blah blah Ack! Slap! Bye bye!!"
"This is the best "Cathy" I've seen in twenty-five years."
A 1647 colony in the Bahamas included a Welshman named John Bethel. The
folk ballad of his crew is believed to have descended
through the centuries into the folk song "(Wreck of the) Sloop John B."
In 1926 the original wreck of this ship was discovered in Nassau, a Bahama
Florida. (Sloops were precarious
sailing hundreds of miles without a chart with a 5-person crew.) Poet
adapted the folk lyrics into a poem, which thirty years later was
recorded by The Kingston Trio.
Apparently there's also a
forgotten third verse
The stewardess she got stewed,
Ran 'round the poop deck nude
Constable had to come and take her away.
Sheriff Johnstone please let me alone
I feel so breakup, I want to go home.
TV history was made
night. In the decades of
television, no show has ever debuted with fewer viewers than a new
reality series on CBS.
The Will achieved a rating of 2.9.
No further episodes will ever
"The day you stop drawing Woody Woodpecker in the sand is the day I stop
being your friend."
Derek Kirk Kim's "Same Difference" is
amazingly poignant story, told in comic form.
Two Korean American slackers in Oakland remember high school, tease a
agonize over the blind girl, and think about life.
Link via Waxy
Four of the ten top-grossing films of 2004 were
Er, and I was surprised that #8 on the highest-grossing list was:
"Meet the Fockers."
A Shark's Tale
"50 First Dates" was #14, and "Dodgeball" was #17.
One list s
To a Denver college teacher, video games "look
like the center of the popular-culture revolution."
A profile in a Denver
alternative newspaper led a journalism web site to echo his
question: who is the next influential videogame critic?
I contacted them and nominated SeanBaby.
Read my letter!
One more Napoleon Dynamite link...
When the movie was released on DVD, David Letterman had Napoleon on his
read a Top Ten List.
Its topic? "Top
Ten Signs You're Not The Most Popular Guy In Your High
"Everyone's jealous of your tetherball skills."
"Not only did you take your mom to the prom, you had to pay her 20 bucks."
Wanna see Ashton Kutcher get beat up in prison?
Then watch The Butterfly Effect. It's just one of many surprises
in a movie which requires Ashton's character to re-live the alternate
paths of his life.
It takes the movie two hours to get through them all. But at least I
liked the ending. And as the girl walks by and the screen fades to black,
We're all of us stars
We're fading away
Just try not to worry
You'll see us some day...
"Flight of the Phoenix" - starring William Shatner?
Sort of. Andrew from work reminds me that the Libyan desert plane
crash also inspired a 1970 TV movie called "Sole Survivor."
Except in this version - there's ghosts.
We've worked at it two nights now, but Dorfman's brainchild looks less
like an airplane than it did
when we started.
It's almost mid-day and he's still working. He's right about one thing,
The little men with the slide rules and computers are going to inherit the
It's kind of sad that Dorfman won't be there to see it, but then I guess
he doesn't need to see it.
He already knows it.
Jimmy Stewart gives that speech in 1965 in the original "Flight of the
Phoenix." But apparently
truths behind the story.
During World War II an American bomber crashed in the Libyan
desert. The survivors attempted to walk across the desert, travelling 75
miles. None survived; their
remains were discovered a decade later by an oil survey crew.
The author of "Flight of the Phoenix" apparently knew this story. His
fictitious plane crash occurs
in precisely the same part of the desert.
Equipment from that plane - the "Lady
Be Good" -
was installed in other planes, which then, mysteriously, also
In the 1965 film the rickety take-off was simulated by a real-life stunt
pilot - Paul Mantz - who
was to fly his C-82 Boom down to touch the sand, and then up again.
The movie was dedicated to his memory.
Stranded in the desert on their first night, the lonely men's
are lifted when a transistor radio picks up this
haunting song - "Senza Fine" - by Connie Francis.
No fears, no tears
No love that dies...
the summer days,
The moon at night,
The sea, the sand,
the starry heights
Are yours and mine
Okay, here's some more clues and trivia.
- The movie's soundtrack includes the theme for The A-Team
- The opening credits ballad was performed by the White Stripes
- Kip's awful song "Always and Forever" was covered by -- er, this guy.
"Why do you love me? Why do you need me?
Always and forever...
We met in a chatroom, now our love can fully bloom.
Sure the world wide web is great,
but you, you make my salivate.
I love technology, but not as much as you, you see.
But I still love technology.
Always and forever.
Our love is like a flock of doves, flying up to heaven above.
Always and forever.
This page of memorable quotes
includes nearly the entire screenplay. And four long quotes (near the
top) that didn't even make it into the movie's final cut.
"This is pretty much the worst video ever made."
Guess what movie I just saw?
"[L]ike anyone can even know that."
"You know what, Napoleon? You can leave."
"You guys are retarded!"
"Pedro offers you his protection."
"I bought you this delicious bass."
I was one of only a few hundred thousand people who bothered to turn out
worst-grossing film of 2004.
Despite having Owen Wilson and Morgan Freeman in a heist story written by
and set in sunny Hawaii, "The
Big Bounce" earned only $5.9 million.
Assuming an average ticket price of $8.50, that's just 694,117 tickets.
Here are the best movies of 2004 - according to ME!
Monster* (2003 release date, says my friend Jeff)
Yes, I liked Alfie that much. (And I saw Polar Express in
3-D Imax, so it looked better than the one most people saw...)
I didn't see every movie this year - so a better question might be which
films I saw which didn't make the "best" list...
Those first three films had a great look and some good scenes, but
I didn't like them enough to put them on the "best" list.
The Bourne Supremacy
The Manchurian Candidate
Notice how those are all sequels?
Kill Bill, Volume 2
Pleasant enough, but not "best of the year" material.
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow
The Stepford Wives
The Big Bounce
And the worst movie I saw this year? Sorry, Jackie Chan.
Around the World in 80 Days
How pop music is made. Case Study #1: Jan and Dean's "Honolulu Lulu."
Jan (Berry) had a late-night snack with song-writer Roger Christian
"over a bowl of tapioca pudding at Los Angeles's Copper Penny all-night
"Producer Lou Adler had suggested the title, and a bleary-eyed Christian
scrawled the lyrics on a napkin, which he neglected to retrieve when the
waitress cleared the dishes. Realizing his carelessness, Christian
asked Berry to help him scour the diner's back-alley dumpster in search
of the rough draft of the song; he finally found the precious napkin at
"'Honolulu Lulu' hit number 11 on Billboard's Hot 100..."
Yet-another story from "The
Nearest Faraway Place: Brian Wilson, the
Beach Boys, and the Southern California Experience."
See also: Jan
and Dean meet a stripper.
Bonus link: That time
Beach Boys recorded with a symphony orchestra.
Welcome to my blog.
I'm so glad you came....
Each week the Quirky Works music
blog posts an original recording. This
(self-referential?) work is the catchy, infectious "Theme
"I was going for a modern sitcom feel a la Friends or Malcolm In
"...though the end gets a little weird."
I nominate this as the
most-2004 moment of 2004.
"How did you get fired?" the bartender wanted to know.
"I wrote an X-rated blog," Jessica said.
The bartender looked puzzled.
"What's a blog?" he asked.
Click here for Destiny-land's
original post about Jessica Cutler's blog
I watched the 1967 movie "Thunder
- starring Annette Funicello and Fabian.
But I didn't expect to see Annette Funicello
swilling hard liquor from a bottle and
driving drunk in a stock car...
Fabian: You crazy broad! What's gotten into you?
Annette: Thatshh right, I'm a crazy broad. But you don't
Fabian: I'd kiss your silly-looking face if you didn't smell like
Annette sang a pretty song (in a hideous peacock-eye dress), and
I decided I wanted the
out-of-print vinyl soundtrack.
And at that same moment someone was selling it on eBay...
"I HAVE A TON OF RECORDS THAT WERE IN STORAGE FOR A VERY LONG
TIME. MANY ARE IN REAL GOOD CONDITION. BUT THEY MAY HAVE AN ODOR AND
HAVE A BIT OF SOILING FROM BEING STORED..."
Amazingly, the winning bid was 99 cents!
Let's free-associate some more on those moments gone by.
Here's the movie's lurid taglines...
And enjoy this moment of existential angst from the movie's theme song by
Band without a Name."
Days of screaming wheels.
Their god is speed...
Their pleasure an 'anytime'
They give him a number then they gave him a car
And maybe with guts and luck he's gonna go far.
They say they've a buckle, and you'll be a star
but I wonder if he'll make it through
He knows that there's danger riding down by the tracks
He knows there's no way of hiding when it looks black.
He's gone through the middle and there's no turning back
but I wonder if he'll make it through
There isn't a way to win that he hasn't tried.
You get in his way he's gonna push you aside.
But when he gets there will he still have his pride?
And I wonder if he'll make it through
Lyrics by Guy Hemric and Jerry Styner
Now, let's see....
(12 x 1) + (11 x 2) + (10 x 3) + (9 x 4) + (8 x 5) + (7 x 6) + (6 x 7) +
(5 x 8) + (4 x 9) + (3 x 10) + (2 x 11) + (1 x 12)
Ah, but it turns out you receive the same number of pipers piping (12, on
the last day) as you do partridges in pear trees (one per day, for all 12
days.) This holds true for the second and second-to-last day, so you can
simplify the equation to...
2 x (12 + 22 + 30 + 36 + 40 + 42) = 2 x 182 = 364
I was a little disappointed I couldn't just say something like "twelve
factorial" and let
it go at that - say...
1! + 2! + 3! + 4! + 5!+ 6! + 7! + 8! + 9! + 10! + 11! + 12!
But the factorial symbol multiplies all the numbers counting up
to the target number. You'd need to use the
Click here to see the complete
We can use Perl to write a short program performing the same calcuations.
# In the song "The 12 Days of Christmas,"
# how many gifts, total, did my
# true love give to me?
for ($day=1; $day<=12; $day++)
$newgifts = $day;
$totalgifts += ($newgifts + $repeatgifts);
$repeatgifts += $newgifts;
print "After 12 days of Christmas,"
print "my true love ";
print "had given me $totalgifts gifts \n";
After 12 days of Christmas, my true love had given me
Have a geeky holiday, everyone !!!
Click here for a longer script which
breaks down the total by type of gift!
And by popular demand: the same script re-coded with a hash
Stories within stories. The 2002 movie "Far From Heaven" was dedicated
the director's grandfather, who was a union organizer and a Communist who
left studio work during the blacklist era.
For the score, director Todd Haynes brought in composer Elmer Bernstein -
who studios had
to hire during the
And the film was inspired by the 1950s melodramas of another famous
director. In an interview,
the life of Douglas Sirk.
"His second wife was Jewish, and he had a difficult time getting her out
of Nazi Germany.
"Meanwhile, his first wife, a Nazi sympathizer, made their son a star of
the Nazi youth cinema. Because she
wouldn't let him see the child, he had to watch propaganda films to keep
abreast of his little boy, on the screen
wearing Nazi regalia. When the
child died, the Nazi cinema was his last connection to his son..."
You have to wonder if his life influenced his work. Here's how the
"Sirk recoiled at the studio's insistence on happy endings,
finding them unrealistic conclusions to the conflicts that preceded
them. Thus, Sirk's films are filled with some of the unhappiest happy
endings ever recorded on film. Technically, life goes on and the
assumption is that everyone lives happily ever after, but any thoughtful
observation of the story's dynamics will alert the viewer to the
unlikeliness of that ever occurring."
The 2002 Far From Heaven apparently owes some of its plot to Sirk's 1955 film All that Heaven
"When widowed Jane Wyman wants to make it with younger and Thoreau-quoting
gardener Rock Hudson..."
And during the filming of Far From Heaven, Julianne Moore
"Blog only unmarried man in tribe.
In 1959 Clark Kent and Lois Lane crash landed in the Mexican jungle -
where they were captured by a secret tribe of cavemen. Lois Lane
the story - and 45 years later, the caveman's name creates
wonderful moments of serendipity.
"So female prisoner must marry Blog -- or die!"
"Well, Lois, it looks as if you're destined to become Mrs. Blog instead of
"No female will have Blog! But you female prisoner! Female prisoner
have no choice!"
Clark Kent smugly thinks his mild-mannered alter-ego will become more
attractive to Lois "when she starts comparing him to bachelor Blog!"
"This Blog's cave! Blog give mate everything..."
The words you thought you'd never hear...
"Blog's become a tribal hero! The tribal beauties are drawn to his flame
like moths! Poor Blog will set fire to many a heart!"
"But," warns the man of steel, "let's hope he gets married before his
lighter fluid evaporates."
SEE ALSO: Batman
meets the Beatles.
("How did you groove it was a trap, Batman?")
Via Waxy via Empty
Wow. You've really done it this time, writer. Where the vast majority
National Novel Writing Month participants abandoned ship at some point in
the journey, you bravely persevered, continuing your literary quest in the
face of ridiculously long odds.
In one month, you have written more fiction than most people create in a
lifetime. You have dared to dream big, to throw long, to say: 'Enough of
the self-critical crap, and the hemming and hawing. This time I'm going
It's an amazing accomplishment, and we're proud of you for seeing it
"Greetings, Legionnaires! The time has come for you to meet...
"My power will ASTOUND you! Observe as I detach my limb -- and transform
it into a deadly weapon!"
D.C. Comics' Legion of Superheroes took a strange turn in
1989. "Legend has it that "Arm-Fall-Off Boy" was kind-of an in-joke among
Legion fans for many years," remembers one
fan, "a kinda generic
reference to some of the laughable Legion rejectees over the years..."
"Can you imagine a comic book artist coming up with this idea?" writes
"Discussing it with the guys down at the office? Isn't it majestic that someone
actually gave the go-ahead for this character to appear?
"Life is more
wonderful than we can ever imagine."
"Girls like me weren't built to be educated. We were made to have
children! That's my ambition! To be a walking, talking baby factory...."
The 1960 movie "Where the Boys Are" is like a catalog of outdated
social roles -- the 1950s, frozen and preserved. "Two years ago I showed
it in a college class to underscore how social rules have changed," one
teacher recently posted online at IMDB.com, adding that "it was all
before the Pill appeared."
But despite the movie's hopeful Connie Francis tune, it's surprisingly
Like the scene where Merritt, played by 22-year-old actress Dolores Hart,
Merritt: "Dr. Kinsey says --"
Dowdy Teacher: "We are not discussing Dr. Kinsey. We are
Merritt: "What could be more interpersonal than 'back seat bingo'?"
Dowdy Teacher: "Just what do you consider suitable subject matters
discussion in this course?"
Merritt: "We're supposed to be intelligent, so why don't we get
down to the giant
jackpot issue? Like should a girl or should she not under any
circumstances 'play house' before marriage?"
Dowdy Teacher: "I'd be afraid to ask your opinion on such a
Merritt: "Don't be afraid. My opinion is yes!"
Dowdy Teacher: "Miss Andrews? Report to the Dean....."
Ah, but Merritt Andrews is no push-over, as her Spring Break date finds
She suddenly interrupts their making out to announce...
Merrit: "We're getting a little chummy aren't we? A cigarette
George Hamilton: "I thought we were hitting it off pretty good."
Merrit: "Too good. That's why I'd like a cigarette...."
And the movie veers instantly into another sociological discussion.
George: "It's not hard to see you were a frosh queen."
Merrit: "Thank you. Is that a compliment?"
George: "Yes, it was meant that way. Why, are you insulted?"
Merrit: "A little, yes. No girl enjoys being considered
promiscuous, even those
who might be."
George: "Now that's a pretty old-fangled notion, Merritt. Sex is
no longer a
matter of morals. That idea went out with the racoon coat. Sex is part
of personal relations."
22-year-old actress Dolores Hart, who had already done two movies with
made just four more over the next three years. In 1963, "after
completing a promotional
Come Fly with Me...she had her limousine drop her off at The Abbey
of Regina Laudis."
And she became a nun.
40 years later reporter Mark Lembeck, who'd been trying to interview her
years to ask her why,
suddenly received a startling
"Hello, Mark Lambeck, this is Mother Dolores," began the hesitant,
message on my voice mail. "I'm so glad to be in touch with you again
after so many years."
My reaction was immediate: I burst out crying.
It's one of the movie industry's most surprising stories.
"Along with Hollywood she left
behind a broken engagement to Don Robinson, a Los Angeles businessman
who broke down and cried when she told him of her decision. Never
married, he has kept in touch with her to this day..."
As I turned off "Where the Boys Are," my TV reception returned me to 2004,
I heard Dr. Phil saying...
"You slept with this guy in a hotel room that your husband paid for?"
"I never meant--"
There were lots of great surprises in the re-make of "Alfie". Guess who's
new songs for the soundtrack?
"You never meant to hurt anyone.
"But you did, Alfie."
"Writer/director Charles Shyer's reinvention of the beloved 60's morality
tale about a serial-womanizer's quest for meaning in life is musically
rooted in a voice that's lived the experience: Mick Jagger."
Mick's collaborating with David Stewart of the Eurhythmics.
And if you
hunt around DaveStewart.com long
enough, you'll eventually find a music video...
But the biggest surprise in the movie was probably at the end, when Alfie
all about. You know what I mean?"
Everyone in the audience waited for a song that never came...
Spider-Man lost his love, Gwen Stacy, when she was killed by the Green
Goblin in 1971. Now all these years lady, Spider-Man finds out...
She had children with the Green Goblin, too.
Gwen didn't realize she was sleeping with a homicidal super-villain that
night she bedded Norman Osborne.
Later during an argument, she tells
"I'll die before I let you lay a finger on my children. Do you hear me?"
"What did we learn in school today?"
So I finally got around to watching the 1995 movie Hackers.
Where to begin....