Monday, June 30, 2008

Monday Ballet Monday: Miami Beach

Wherein blah blah blah something about Florida

Friday, June 27, 2008

Because The Wife is out of the country and The Child is at a sleepover

Wherein but it wasn't a total waste

Went to Dad's Garage last night. Usually a reliable source for entertainment. Though it should be noted we don't go nearly as often as we once did and recognize few of the names in the playbill.

Well, that was a wasted $17. Probably the worst show I've seen at Dad's. While a number of the songs were well done, the surrounding plot didn't do much and the vulgarity was just vulgar without a purpose. Basically, for what it was trying to do, it just wasn't over the top enough: it needed more gore and the humor needed to be more offensive (rather than just lowest common denominator insulting). A couple of exceptions: Z Gillispie strutting about the stage as Harry Hardman was fucking awesome with his showstopper tune "I'm Fucking Awesome". The usually reliable George Faughnan couldn't do much with a very pedestrian portrayal of a bigotted preacher who discovers he's suffering from repressed homosexuality until towards the end when he stripped down to buttless leather shorts over a pink body-stocking and sang "I'm Going Gay For Jesus." Other memorable songs - meaning the ones I could remember the titles of -- "Socially Retarded" and "Why Are You Cornholing Me Jesus." Yeah, I think someone has issues with religion.

Couldn't figure out if the fight scenes were supposed to be simulated slow motion or if the choreography was just that lame. It was a far cry from Action Movie: The Play. Though one of the side effects of that show's fight scenes is the time one punch actually landed and knocked out a couple of Faughnan's teeth. Someone in the audience picked them up. The fight coordinator, the guy who punched George, had his hand become infected and it took him a couple months to regain full use. I think I have all that correct, it has been a few years. Of interest to me, we had tickets to that show, but missed it because we were in the emergency room. A friend slipped walking out of a restaurant and gashed open her head. After a few stitches, she insisted that we take her to the 10:30pm improv. Which we did and that's when we heard about the earlier events. But I digress.

I almost left at intermission and while the second half was better, it didn't justify staying. I'd hoped the show would be more interesting than the youtube preview, but I was wrong. Play was written by Matt Horgan and Travis Sharp. I don't recognize Sharp's name, but Horgan has always impressed us. Maybe one of favorite roles of his was from the Scandal when he played an Amish farmer living on a space ship and building a butter churn rocket; who also fell in love with a android. It all made sense at the time.

Best part of the evening was during the preshow annoucements when they said they're bringing back "Cannibal: The Musical" for the next season. Looking forward to seeing that again. Might be the best show I've seen them do. based on the Trey Parker student film, Dad's created and world premiered the stage production about 10 years ago. After the South Park movie became a big deal, Troma rereleased "Cannibal: The Musical" on DVD with a drunken commentary by Parker and friends mostly dismayed at poorly made their little movie was. It is, but the music is pretty good. The DVD also has a couple film clips of the original Dad's garage production.

Hmm, not exactly king of the playground

Wherein still better than Leo


Created by OnePlusYou

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Someone alert Stephen Colbert

Tuesday answers on Tuesday

Maybe if I waited until Wednesday I'd have figured out #2 and #4

  1. Mighty Ducks is NHL, so scratch that. I don't know, but did you know that Steamboat Willie was also the name of a late-19th century prosthestic to help civil war veterans deal with a certain type of war injury. It was quickly discontinued when no one could figure out how to keep the women from being burned by the heat.

  2. Houdini

  3. 7

  4. Catcher in the Rye

  5. Mrs. O'Leary

  6. Light

  7. Stuff falling from the sky.

Monday, June 23, 2008

"One of those people"

Wherein noticing lots of youtube videos here lately instead of any actual content

While at Borders drinking my Saturday morning Seattle's Best large latte with coconut, I came across Bust magazine. Never heard of it, but Amy Sedaris was on the cover and profiled in the center. Funny article, go read it. I learned, in addition to smoking a lot of pot, Amy was also on the Martha Stewart show.

Martha Stewart

Todd Oldham

Microsoft internal video

Monday Ballet Monday: some music

Wherein if it were nothing but dancing that would be boring

Alien Head Ballet

Through the Barricades

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Better Redder Meat

Your Attention Please!

Fuddruckers has brought back the ostrich burger! YES!

**Title is the catch phrase used in an ostrich farming infomercial from about ten years ago.

exorcise this

Wherein Phones -- the black guy wearing the boom box and massive headphones? Probably the inspiration for Lazytown's Pixel

Roger Ebert:
There is a sense in which "**********" comes as a refreshing surprise: I didn't think it was still possible, in the dog-eared final days of the 1970s, to have this silly, innocent, lame-brained and naive movie. I'd always thought that when Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon grew up, that was it.

Megan Rosenfeld:
************ is the sort of movie we should probably burn before it gets into a time capsule and reveals to some future generation the extent to which the 1970s could descend into cultural and artistic barrenness.

Sorry, you just missed it and there's no reported next viewing

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Tuesday answers on Thursday

Wherein driving back from Florida we thought we'd count political bumperstickers and see if there was a preference. No luck, as all we saw was one Obama sticker. Somewhere on the Florida turnpike there is a McCain billboard and that should count for something. For comparison, we also saw two dead armadillos.

1. Seuss
2. The Celtic sport about tossing telephone poles.
3. no guess
4. Lake Superior
5. Green Day
6. He's my favorite honky, King Tut
7. Dana Delany was in two of them. Lost, and the first season of Desperate Housewives, involved people raising children who were not theirs. That sounds good, I'll go with it.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Additional thoughts on WDW

Wherein I hope that's the last trip for a long while

Hall of Presidents, I finally caught. Biggest disappointment since last year's ride on Soarin'. But in both cases the fault is mine for not paying attention to the promotional material. I thought the Hall of Presidents involved walking around and picking which presidents one wanted to listen to. Instead, there's a theater that probably seats a thousand or so and a stage filled with all the presidents. There's a film strip presentation focusing on the continental congress allowed slavery to continue and then how Lincoln walked the country convincing all that slavery was bad. After that, all the presidents are introduced -- all with animatronic nods and twitches -- then Bush (the current) speaks, followed by Lincoln. Que exit. That's it? That's what I've waited 38 years to see? Bah Humbug. Now if someone creates a Hall of the Mountain Kings then I'm there.

Cinderella's Evil Step-sisters. Nice to see Disney rolling out some of the villians. Waiting for Belle's Storytime, the step-sisters were out for photos and autographs. Clearly having a more open policy towards comments and interactions than the princesses, the step-sisters were very funny and displayed a professional knack for improve. The villains get to have all the fun.

Speaking of Improv. Not the best Mad Hatter we'd seen and Alice looked like she wished he'd just shut the hell up. I concurred.

What's up with the Peter Pan ride? Wait times are about double nearby rides. When it was 40 minutes, Snow White, Small World, and Haunted Mansion were all 10-20 minutes. I'm guessing it's because of the flying ship size. Even though it's a moving sidewalk entry, each car only holds 2-3 people. Compared to the similar Snow White Scary Adventure, whose cars, even though they stop and start for loading, hold 8-12. Still, flying over London is one of my favorite moments in the entire park. Strategy: fastpass Peter Pan and knock off 3-4 other things while you wait. Similarly, instead of suffering heatstroke waiting for the Dumbo ride, go do Aladdin's Magic Carpet ride.

Best place for a nap: Mickey's PhilharMagic or Carousel of Progress. Despite having a couple of jerky turns, the People Mover gets an honorable mention for its length. If at EPCOT, the Golfball ride is best since the Siemans' renovations have removed any scenes from the second half of the ride.

Exhibit that could use a little napalm: Country Bear Jamboree. The Jamboree's continued horribleness has no explanation. The crowds are small and I've never heard anyone laugh. Perhaps the release of The Princess and the Frog will give Disney an excuse to ditch the hick bears and put in a New Orleans' jazz club. Screw the frontier theme.

Best place to escape the sun/rain and have a snack. The exit for the Tiki Room. It's a large covered exit and near the end it has low brick walls perfect for sitting. Well shaded, picks up a nice breeze, and you get a burst of cool air every time the crowd lets out. We grabbed some food and hung out there for about 30 minutes waiting for a thunderstorm to pass.

Best tantrum not thrown by The Child: Red-faced child (9-10 years old) at EPCOT screaming "IT'S NOT FAIR!"

Best tantrum not thrown by Our Child's parents. After the father says something about a nearby water fountain because their children look thirsty, the mother yells: are you fucking stupid? That's why we have water bottles. You do not drink from the fountains. I should have followed these people with a microphone.

Best reason to punch someone in the face not taken advantage of. At the front of the line for the trams we missed a spot because of the motherfucking assholes who shoved their way past us like this was the last motherfucking helicopter out of motherfucking Saigon. Still another 30 minutes before the park would even open. I hope all you people die very soon and very painfully. Motherfuckers. And these weren't children or teenagers, these were grown ass adults.

Grown ass adults. One way to review the week was as an unpleasant festival of tube tops and bad tattoos.

Thank God for England. It's 95 degrees, we're at EPCOT and The Child is riding NEMO with the grandparents. Watch as The Wife and I slam pints of cider at the England beer stand.

Thank God for Teutonic blondes. While the England beer stand was always staffed by cute British guys, the German beer stand was always staffed by lovely Teutonic gals (and had much longer lines).

America in decline. There's an amphitheater in front of EPCOT's America and last week's music was provided by a U2 cover band. It was too horrible to photograph. However, just imagine an aged and out of shape Ben Stiller doing a bored Bono impression and it's like you're in the front row. Come to think of it, I have no proof that it wasn't Ben Stiller.

France. I think they're showing the original movie when EPCOT first opened. All the workers looked like French college students who probably thought spending the summer in America would be fun and were about two days from realizing this was a decision they'd regret for the rest of their lives. On the other hand, the pastries were tasty.

Mexico. Did you know that everyone in Mexico wears sombreros, plays in a Mariachi band and works in a lovely seaside resort? Then again, I've never been to Mexico, so maybe this is accurate.

China. I don't remember what we said about China, but we laughed.

Norway. The Viking boat ride is fun and the pickled herring in tomato sauce was yummo.

Haunted Mansion. They've nicely scarified the place up a bit. But the graveyard segment either needs more light or some contrast. Couldn't make out half the stuff in there.

Reality show bathtubs

Where in Mark was a cool dood

Watching the Top Chef reunion show and they replayed the segment when Mark and Spike shared a bubble bath. It's cute and funny, but the best would have to be Rich Vos and Dave Mordal from the first season of Last Comic Standing:

Monday, June 16, 2008

Monday Ballet Monday: Ballet Workshop Ostrava

Wherein everything last week was written the week before. It's kind of a pain to completely disconnect for a week and then have to deal with the backlog

Choreography: Eva Vajsová
Teacher: Eva Vajsová
Music: Tomáš Szarka
Performed on August 19, 2007 in Ostrava (Czech Republic)

Some out of focus dancing to Led Zeppelin:

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Top Chef: Season 4 Final Competition

Wherein videos are by Rowdy Food

We're hoping for a Richard Blais win, though Stephanie Izzard winning would not disappoint us.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Tuesday's with Ken

Wherein answers to questions I haven't read

Needless to say, these are black belt WAGs.

  1. Holland
  2. Four
  3. The sound of knuckles cracking
  4. Ground rule double
  5. Mothra? I'm thinking of the three-headed thing.
  6. No idea.
  7. Not only did Frank Sinatra sleep with them, he also had relations with their mothers.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Ballet Monday: At the beginning

Wherein is it Ballet Monday or Monday Ballet? I think I'm lacking consistency

Know your five positions

Got that? Ok, let's try a leap.

Oh, that looked like it hurt. Maybe a little too much, so let's dial it back a bit.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Music from the 1990s

Wherein seriously, that decade is almost a decade away? I feel a black mood descending that can only be fought with tequila

I've gone through my music and near as I can tell this is my music from the 90s (opens a google spreadsheet). This isn't all that I purchased -- I skipped greatest hits, compilations, reissues, some soundtracks, -- but it should almost all that was released in the 1990s. Actually, there are a few I didn't skip and I'll explain them when I get to them. One goal I have is to select my top 10-20 albums for the decade (since it's an arbitrary number I feel no need to prematurely define and then have to cram my selections into a too small box or puff it up if it turns out I hate all of this), so I'll need to skip a few that I purchased after the 1990s were over. And there's some CDs from The Wife on here that won't make my list -- I'm looking at you R.E.M.; go cry in the corner.

I think there's some good music in here and I'm undecided how I'll break it up between here and 44and33.blogspot. My apologies for neglecting site that for a couple of months, by the way.

If you want numbers, here's the initial breakdown by year. Total albums = 148
  • 1990 = 14
  • 1991 = 16
  • 1992 = 17
  • 1993 = 21
  • 1994 = 26
  • 1995 = 14
  • 1996 = 12
  • 1997 = 10
  • 1998 = 8
  • 1999 = 10

When I was pulling these out of my iTunes list, I discovered I had a lot of CDs listed without the release date. Did my best to catch as many as I could and this list could change as I dig up/remember more. For example, for this project I finally got around to buying Arrested Development's 3 Years, 5 Months, & 2 Days in the Life Of... on CD. I had it originally as a cassette and that done blown up years ago. So there could be a few more like that.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Top Chef 4.13

Wherein the semi-final episode. I'm unclear if they're cutting one or two chefs tonight. I've heard that each of the past seasons have been different. There are also rumors and speculations that for next week's finals, the deknifed chefs will be brought back to sous for the finalists.

Previously on So Quoted:
  1. Episode 12. See this one for the last round of charts.
  2. Episode 11. No commentary.
  3. Time waster: Top Chef Word Clouds
  4. Episode 10. Has the show done anything to portray her in a nonnegative light? Andrew gets the twitchy edit, Dale gets the asshole edit, Spike is the closest to a villain edit, and Lisa is just complaining and making excuses.
  5. Episode 9. I'm still having a hard time giving any credence to Antonia's ascendance. She won the tasting quickfire and the $10 family meal challenge. While nice, these are not the type of credentials that lead me to believe she has what it takes to win.
  6. Episode 8 Early favorite, Mark, cooked a plate of crap, Stephanie is spiraling, and Lisa is ready to knife someone. Guessing Lisa goes home with an attitude. Nooooo! It's Mark! I'm beginning to hate this show. Further thoughts...probably my least favorite episode. Nikki and Antonia, having cornered the market on unimpressive dishes, score points on a challenge designed to create unimpressive dishes.
  7. Episode 7. For a moment I thought we'd get the shock of the series with Stephanie getting the blame and the axe. Whew, that was close. Spike and Nikki are the only ones with fewer top finishes than Jennifer.
  8. Episode 6. Richard and Stephanie are easily my two favorite and seem to be playing at a different level than the other chefs.
  9. Episode 5. No commentary.
  10. Charting Top Chef. My first top 4: Richard, Stephanie, Mark, Andrew. With...Dale Talde is my darkhorse, if only because the editing hasn't given him much of opportunity to do anything but whine.

Interview with Stephanie Izard. Here's two questions:
C: Of the three other finalists, who would you say was your main competition?

SI: Probably Richard. He has a unique way of cooking and approaching food that I find neat to be around and watch. I'd love to pick his brain.

C: Which chefs do you think should have been in the top four?

SI: Dale or Jen. My predictions for the final four were me, Richard, Antonia and Dale. Unfortunately, Dale let his issues with Lisa get the better of him. It was tough to watch because I've known him for a long time and he's a great chef. I just had the opportunity to visit San Francisco and eat at Jen's restaurant. The food was amazing; she's such a talented cook.

Looks like tonight they're working with a pig. Wonder if Blais will work with the pork belly. Here's one of my favorite dishes of his:
Miso Barbeque Pork Belly
Marinated with miso and cooked sous vide 72 hrs, eggplant marmalade, tomato marmalade, honey sauce & barbeque sauce

I would have been perfectly happy ending with the aroma dome, then we get this exquisite pork belly. I'm thinking I've discovered my ultimate comfort food. This would be the perfect food for a frozen Minnesota day...worked pretty well for a hot Spring day in Atlanta, so no complaints. Paired wonderfully with both the eggplant marmalade and the tomato marmalade. Be sure to drag the eggplant through the honey. Barbeque sauce was a bit sweet for my taste, but that's me.

Just great, I'm in my happy place now.

And I wrote this two years ago about Richard Blais:
Overall, a fun guy who loves food and loves talking about food. In addition to ICA, he'll appear on an episode of Sugar Rush and he'll be in Food and Wine later this summer. Definately in promotional mode, said he'd love to do more TV. He's very high energy and has a self-deprecating humor that would probably go over great on television. His enthusiasm for food reminded me a lot of the late Jamie Shannon of Commander's Palace and Turner South's Off The Menu.


...It's show time, folks!


Judge's table: As usual, Richard and Stephanie were excellent so let's rip apart the other two.

Antonia = unrefined and undercooked
Lisa = good ideas, short on execution

Thought it was pretty obvious Antonia was going home. Lisa was just competent enough to get by. Or in the immortal words of Richard:
You won the fucking bronze medal. Congratulations. There you go.

Having met Richard a few times and watching him on the show, I wonder if he subscribes to the thoughts behind this article: Caring for Your Introvert. I've threatened to print that out and hand it to all The Wife's relatives. So I get to stay home a lot. The awkward high fives, uncomfortable hugs (NO TOUCHING!), refusing to join in the group dancing. Yeah, that all sounds familiar. This one is for you:

The sous chefs speak at the judges table. What's interesting is that Dale talks about worrying about the pork belly all night. My guess is that once the prep time had expired, there was still other shots and filming the crew had to do and during this someone realized an entire pan of meat had been left out. Or maybe it was just discovered while cleaning the kitchen. Leading to two three additional thoughts:
  1. This explains the great pan shot from the backs of the chefs to the forgotten meat as they walk out the door was most likely staged.
  2. Enhanced competition integrity—reinforces that when time is up, that's it. Good for the show.
  3. If they knew about it the day before, then Stephanie and Dale had a lot more time to brainstorm a new dish. Not meant to diminish the horror of losing a main dish and having to create a new one without being able to buy new ingredients; but it might have lessened the stress for them. A tiny bit.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Nikki, darling?

Wherein someone should be going to hell for this

Matt Welch has the first video of the series White boy bands play Prince covers. Which really shouldn't be that hard. Prince is an amazing rock guitarist with some excellent pop songs. Any halfway competent band should have no problem with Prince. For example, I sent Matt a link to Warren Zevon covering Raspberry Beret and easily located an mp3 of Semisonic covering Erotic City.

For a bigger challenge -- and thank god for the internet or I would've wasted this time doing laundry or cleaning the kitchen -- how about Prince songs played on the ukelele. Well, how about that?

Taking completely out of the context of the movie, Purple Rain, I've always thought that Darling Nikki was an extremely funny song. It's basically slapstick and proof that Prince does have a sense of humor. I'm not sure that the following video necessarily supports my argument. But do like I did and imagine the lead singer is Tipper Gore after a 5th of Jack Daniels.

Not only is my path to hell paved, it is also covered with 6 inches of Crisco.

Redemption? Hindu Love Gods:

What if Prince and Al Green wrote a song together? Wouldn't say they're completely successful, but it's a decent effort and a not bad song. Band is Quoting Napoleon. Catchy name.

Twice is a rumor, Thrice is a fact

Wherein or something like that; of course if I get two more people to say it then I'm practically covered in chocolate sauce and hugging a banana; or dipped in honey and rolled in granola; or as shiny as a shiny metallic thing that's been shined until its shininess bounces off the glass facade of the building across the street, blinding a cab driver who runs over a stall at the farmer's market not killing anyone though many squash are severely injured

Jon Stewart is no longer funny. Evidence:

  1. XWL: "The Daily Show would also be safe, cause they haven't been particularly humorous in quite awhile"
  2. Radley Balko: "The bad news is that John [sic] Stewart isn't all that funny anymore."

Under consideration,
  • Dan Williamson: "The good news is that eight months from now, Stewart should be funny again—maybe not as entertaining as Stephen Colbert, but funny enough."


Wherein quickly quickly

  1. White
  2. Blade Runner
  3. Cyprus
  4. Robin Hood
  5. DK
  6. Ghandi
  7. DK

Monday, June 02, 2008

Monday Ballet: Live from Anaheim

Wherein tips and tricks

Anaheim Ballet has a cool feature: "The world's first weekly ballet video podcast and YouTube channel." Here's two.

How to tie pointe shoes