Sunday, August 31, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
Buffy is back!!! Well, sorta. The CW had launched theWB.com, an internet reincarnation of the now defunct network. The main pull of the site is the video on demand they'll offer, which includes none other than Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the greatest show in the history of television.
The second I heard about this I ran lickity split over to the site to check it all out. It appears that the first five episodes are available right now. Great nostalgia. I'm hoping they'll expand their offerings slowly, without removing the initial content. We shall see. Also, the player's a little wonky on my computer, and so I haven't actually managed to pull an episode up (but I'm at work so that's okay).
This is such great news. I'm just as happy as the day I found out that you can watch the full series of Firefly on hulu.
Thank heavens for the internets, and for Joss Whedon too!
So Senator John "called his wife a cunt" McCain finally picked a veep. Exciting! Was it Romney like everyone had been predicting? Nope! Even better. He picked a lady. Governor Sarah Palin.
- This is the second time a lady has been picked to be the vice presidential candidate. (The number one option to be number two: Geraldine "I ruined my career by saying race too much during this election" Ferraro.)
- Palin is the first female and youngest Governor of Alaska. She was 42 when she took office in 2006. She's 44 now.
- She has a fuck ton of kids (5).
- She's pro-life, which has long been considered to be a political requirement of anyone McCain picks.
- She's a former beauty queen!
Okay, so let's get the obvious out of the way. John McCain picked this lady because she's a woman. And because despite a week of trying to make all the dems love each other again, there are still some PUMAs lurking around and he thinks the best way of catching them is to throw a woman at them. It might work for some, but it won't work for all of them. Because the people who love Hillary love HILLARY. They don't just love her because she's a woman, they love her because they've known her for 16 years. Palin seems cool enough, she's pursued ethics reform, but she's not Hillary Clinton.
Verdict: It won't get McCain the overwhelming number of women votes he's hoping it'll get him, unless this woman turns out to be stupendous on the stump. We'll see.
But if she fails to push him over the edge, we all know what he'll call her...
Hollywood loves an inspirational teacher. You can make a flow chart of student/teacher movies, all ending with inspiring music and kids who have learned a lot about art/literature/math and a little something about life.
Some top picks:
- Blackboard Jungle: 'Rock Around the Clock' is the devil!
- To Sir, with Love: Hey, wasn't that teacher a teen delinquent in that other movie?
- Stand and Deliver: My calc teacher hoped we would be like this; too bad we weren't troublemakers and didn't really care about math, either.
- Dead Poets Society: Oh Captain, my Captain!
- Dangerous Minds: Been spending most our lives living in an Amish paradi--oh wait.
But these are just movies, maybe inspired (haha) by some true stories. For real life inspiring teachers, you have to look a little deeper. You have to be willing to take a little more than a sappy life cliche. You've gotta be called fuckers.
This wasn't my professor, but I loved him. He was really there for his students, encourages them to go out there and make some art (film, specifically), and was open to different points of view. But he was also badass. From the syllabus:
"Attendance: Ya gotta show up and don't be tardy. If not, it is your ass.
Look here I can not stand this late shit. I am not going to repeat myself
because folks keep coming late. Screw that shit. Get ya asses to
Another direct quote: "If people keep being late, I'm gonna start
Sure, talking about poetry and tearing up books is great. But when it comes down to it, kids need to be smacked around a little. Maybe KevEv didn't dance with his students at the end of the year, but he's got their backs.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
By this point, everyone knows big personalities stick around a little longer on reality shows. Project Runway, the gold standard of reality television, isn't much different. So now that we're solidly into Season 5, who's your favorite/least favorite designer crazyface?
Minus the waterfall.
- It's updated really regularly--Mondays through Fridays, every day, usually around midnight. It's one of my morning internet checks.
- The quips. Sometimes there was a quip too many, but it's toned down now. And really, I love reading about people who are quippier than average.
- The robots.
- The narrative. Jeph has really settled into a good flow here. Questionable Content is a mostly reality-based comic, so it's all about the characters and their lives/interactions. I'm hooked.
- Awesome t-shirts.
- Art progression. Jeph has grown so! It's exciting to watch.
- Indie music references. (Although Morgan could probably out-reference any of the cast members.)
Upfront admission: I found this by google image searching the phrase "uglycute" (in my defense, it's the first time I've done it, and it's mostly because I'm busy as all get out and dailypuppy was simply delivering me cutecute puppies as opposed to uglycute ones).
But I think it qualifies because it's both really fucking ugly and really fucking cute.
Curse them for not letting me embed this but bless them for making it.
Sesame Street, I continue to contend, is the coolest.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
"If I had a quarter for every time I said I had a nickel, I would have five times as much theoretical money.” - Stephen Colbert
"If you're jealous of me because I kissed a sixth grader, well you should know, that I didn't even want to. He made me!"
Working at the local motel? Sucks.
Getting to tell the world what a whore Denise is? Rules.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
La Blogotheque is possibly the most hipster/indie thing that I absolutely love. It's a french music blog that features a little series of web videos called concerts à emporter, or soirées à emporter, depending. Most of these are shot with bands that swirl through Paris, but very recently they featured a singer out in a little public square area in LA.
This woman's voice is absolutely gorgeous, and the bit is shot simply but with beautiful lighting and some sort of great color effects in edit. But what's best is the contrast between her soprano voice against the background of the families shuffling around behind her on what appears to be a lovely weekend evening. There's a sweetest to it that just knocks me off my feet.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Posted by annie at 12:04 PM
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Just look at the Gap's new line. Grunge redux anyone?
Pro's? I like flannel and I like comfy. Grunge is both of these things. I might not mind being able to get away with overalls every so often all over again.
But if we're going to have a fashion comeback from the 90's there's another type of comeback I must demand. We need 90's music.
Here are some of my demands.
Who doesn't love Arrested Development? Before it was a show it was a group. An awesome hip hop group that said fuck off to the gangsta rap that was growing at this point. Oh how I loved them
Soundgarden! Their music means the 90's to me more than almost any other band. It reminds me of being a little teenager sitting in my room making collages of various media idols that I posted all over my bed posts. It reminds me of being scared of that Black Hole Sun video (which I would have included but I've always liked this song better).
Under the Bridge. Wonderful song by a band that may still be my all-time favorite.
My other Chili Pepper favorite, my not so guilty mid-90's pleasure, and big butt and a smile.
These are my demands. I expect culture to heed.
Dangerous territory, but excellent when done right.
This one qualifies as "right" in my book.
I love me some Cee-Lo. That man has a voice!
"With educated people, I suppose, punctuation is a matter of rule; with me it is a matter of feeling. But I must say I gave a great respect for the semicolon; it's a very useful little chap."--Abraham Lincoln
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is delayed until summer 2009.
Seriously? They already have the trailer out. This is a few months away. I could understand if they had announced this back in April, but now is too late. Obviously I will go see the movie anyway, since I cried when I finished the last book, but God help Alan Horn if I ever see him in a dark alley.
(Harry looks upset, too.)
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Suit lugging huge rolling suitcase to hobo taking up two seats on train: Pardon me.
Hobo (sliding over, looking at huge suitcase): What do you have there, a dog or something?
Suit (with deadpan look on his face, stroking suitcase fondly): I used to. (sighs)
(hobo slowly inches away)
Overheard by: Cai
Posted by annie at 10:56 AM
Monday, August 18, 2008
Rob and Elliot: another webcomic near and dear to my heart.
I love Rob and Elliot for its randomness. I don't really know much about Rob and Elliot as characters, and there isn't an overall plot arch, but that's what I love them for. They can do whatever, whenever, and it usually leads to dark hilarity.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
- JFK (The airport, not the person.)
- Loud people in hats
Posted by annie at 8:46 PM
- YA and children's books are where it's at. These are the books you grow up loving and end up holding nearer and dearer to your heart than anything written by Joyce or Melville.
- Buffy helped me survive middle school. I'm usually not a vampire nut, but this show really struck a chord. It used a supernatural universe in order to underscore how weird and deadly high school can be.
- My middle school crushes were Cyrano de Bergerac and the Phantom of the Opera. Hell, I even liked the eyepatch kid from Newsies the best. Any messed up guy that loved the main girl just for loving him back was right up my 7th grade alley.
"He was...kind of over the top when you got hurt down in Phoenix. He didn't believe..." Jacob trailed off self-consciously.My eyes narrowed. "I fell.""I know that," Jacob said quickly."He thinks Edward had something to do with me getting hurt."
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
The only old-school computer game that can rival Oregon Trail is Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego. While my family only had the demo version of Oregon Trail--I had to try to kill my wagon-mates really quickly--we had the full Carmen Sandiego, so it holds a special place in my heart. All I know about geography I owe to that sticky-fingered filcher.
Posted by annie at 1:46 PM
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
How does this pony look so much like Nathan Fillion?
Wait, you haven't seen Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog yet?
(Watch it on hulu!)
So many links! Also, if Joss Whedon is out there, reading this, I think we should be best friends.
Monday, August 11, 2008
Thirteen Words Not Found in the English Language
5. Esprit de l’escalier (French): a witty remark that occurs to you too late, literally on the way down the stairs…
6. Meraki (Greek): doing something with soul, creativity, or love
10. Pochemuchka (Russian): a person who asks a lot of questions
I must sound like some kind of Grendel's mother, making enemies left and right. But the internet is the place for differing views to butt heads, right?
Friday, August 8, 2008
An attack on trashy YA lit. Nothing new, right? Anyone can say bad things about the Clique books. But somehow the Guardian's Anthony McGowan can't even manage that.
My first reaction--"Yeesh, what a creep." Those snide remarks about Jane Austen and Philip Pullman made me want to go through my computer screen and punch him in the neck. He reminded me of that obnoxious kid in high school. The smartass who would undermine the teacher and destroy half of English literature with the assurance that he "knew what he was talking about." Pretentious ass.
Anyway, so I read through the article and I came to this conclusion: it's not a very good column.
Initially, he claims that he's setting out to talk about "which books, if any, [he'd] ban from school libraries - in the unlikely circumstance of me being in a position to ban anything." So he mentions Austen, Pullman, Nietzsche, De Sade (the two former he wouldn't ban, the two latter he wouldn't be so happy about teens ready.) So not a huge list of banned books here. But then we get to it:
OK, so not many teenagers are going to be reading Nietzsche and the Marquis de Sade, but there's a whole world of books that I'd ban straight away if I got the chance: pink books. Yes, down there with Nietzsche and De Sade I'd place those terrible teeny-chick lit "novels", the ones about snogging and boyfriends and make-up and nothing else. The novel is supposed (says who? says me) to exalt the soul, to show humanity what, in its greatest moments, it might achieve; and yet also to reveal our vulnerability and our helplessness.
The leathery-skinned hacks who churn out the Pink books present a vision of young people as self-obsessed, shallow, blind automata, swilling about in a moronic inferno. Reading these books will leave your soul as shrivelled as one of those pistachios you sometimes find, blackened, in the bottom of the bag. Teenage girls, read the Brontës, read Elizabeth Gaskell, read George Eliot, read anything else - even Jane Austen - but keep the pink off your shelves.
So...what are these "pink books?" I can certainly think of some--the Gossip Girl books, the Clique books, the It Girl books, hell, even Sweet Valley High. I hate these series. (Okay, I did have the first few Sweet Valley Twins books, but they were never a favorite.) They are shallow, moronic, etc. But why doesn't McGowan mention any of the books I've just named. My guess is that he's never actually run into one of these books. He's just heard they're out there in the same way a parent might know crack or oral sex parties are out there. So why even write a column about something about which you don't have any first hand experience? Did he even do any research? Maybe he just read the back of a Gossip Girl novel? Put a little more effort into this next time, please, Guardian.
Sorry, Anthony. You knew you were going to be my enemy when you insulted Jane.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
The internet is awesome.
Why? WHY? You actually want me to explain? Fine. it's awesome because if it weren't for the internet none of us would know who Julia Nunes is. That would be sad because she's wonderfully talented. She plays the ukulele, covers great songs amazingly well, and then even writes her own tunes (which also happen to be good).
Then she puts them on youtube so the rest of the world can see them. So we should all thank our lucky youtubes for giving us Julia Nunes.
Oh yeah, she's 19. A teenager!
Monday, August 4, 2008
Sunday, August 3, 2008
"The Dark Knight" almost certainly took away some business from the "The Mummy," since both movies competed for the same action crowds.Um...did you not pay attention to the hype for the last year or so?
"It looked like we could do somewhere between $45 and $50 million, but no one could have foreseen the juggernaut 'The Dark Knight' has become," said Nikki Rocco, head of distribution for Universal.
I've been at Pawleys Island all week attending my family reunion. It was a big success on the whole, although we did suffer multiple injuries and had at least two trips to the ER. Meanwhile, I got to hang out with all my cousins that I don't see, and a couple of their friends.
Here's a clip of Anna Chill (my cousin) and Brooke (her friend) at the Cornbread festival last year.
Pretty cool cats if you ask me.