Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Film Corner

Over the past week or so I was able to catch CAST AWAY and PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE and YENTL on tv. Let me drop a lil' something-something on each of them.

I have to say I was pretty disappointed in CAST AWAY. Tom Hanks got into incredible shape and that was impressive, but other than that there really wasn't much.

PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE on the other hand I would basically recommend, though with some caution. This quirky Paul Thomas Anderson film really tries to be off-beat and for someone that loves quirky and different and off-beat (like me) ... this isn't a bad time sprinkled with some clever here and there. It's a romantic comedy that isn't filled with laughs nor romance but quick, short punches of both in a bewildering manner.

This may sound strange but YENTL, for me, was the most enjoyable out of the three. I think it has a good deal to do with the story which is from a novel by Isaac Bashevis Singer (Yentl, the Yeshiva Boy). Anyway, if you're not expecting much from this 1983 film starring and directed by Barbara Streisand, it will pleasantly surprise you.

Blog Out!

I've added two more blogs to my links section. Both are hot blogs run by hotties. Notice how I used the term "hot" twice but with two different meanings. Yes, ladies, I am smooth.

Anyway, check them out and stuff:

Becky's Hot Bliggity Blog

The Green Straw

Monday, February 27, 2006

Greatest Quizilla Quiz Ever!

I'm so happy!! Do this quiz!! RIGHT NOW! DO IT!

Lord of the rings
J.R.R. Tolkien: Lord of the Rings. You are
entertaining and imaginative, creating whole
new worlds around yourself. Well loved, you
have a whole league of imitators, none of
which is quite as profound as you are.
Stories and songs give a spark of joy in the
middle of your eternal battle with the forces
of evil.

Which literature classic are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, February 24, 2006

Bloggy Book Club Update

The wonderrrrriffic Marcia of The Pink Shoe has a great book club post listing the novels she's currently devouring. Go ahead and check it out here:

I'm still reading The Curious Incident... -- a fantastic book. But with school moving into full gear text books have priority.

The last book on Marcia's post is The Time Traveler's Wife. Marcia highly recommends it which is in line with everything I've either heard or read about the novel. Just the other day I had to order a text book from Amazon.com. In order to take advantage of the free shipping I decided to add two novels as well. One is a short story collection by Ernest Hemingway. The other is The Time Traveler's Wife.

Yes, I should probably complete one book before announcing which book I will read next ... but that's not how I roll. Oh yeah, I'll be checking out one of George Harrar's novels, The Spinning Man, as well.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Read Slate!

So remember Guantanamo Bay? We're still holding enemy combatants there. Now regardless of your political disposition everyone wants (or should want) to know the truth. One of my favorite columnists is Dahlia Lithwick. Lithwick has penned numerous, superb legal columns for Slate. Her sharp legal mind helps the layman navigate Supreme Court cases (in the Supreme Court Dispatches column) as well as important legal news stories. Her piece on three recent Guantanamo Bay reports is eloquent and informative. If anyone wants to know about the type of people we are holding there ... read this.

Also, with the Oscars around the corner (Jon Stew is the host, so I'll be watching) I recommend Edward Jay Epstein's latest Hollywood Economist column over at Slate. It's a quickie.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Has anyone seen FREEDOMLAND?

The more I read and hear about FREEDOMLAND the better it gets. It looks really good and I'm just wondering if anyone out there has seen this yet. If you have please leave a comment and whether you recommend it or not.

The film is based off of Richard Price's novel of the same name. Price adapted the screenplay as well. I haven't read much of Price's work but his screenplays for THE COLOR OF MONEY and CLOCKERS were exceptional and he's done an episode of "The Wire" as well.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Nudie Pics

Seriously, who wants to see my nudie pics?

click here.

(technically I'm not nude, but I am topless)

Monday, February 13, 2006

Music Rec

SF's own Michael Franti has been making thoughtful, eclectic music for years now. You may have heard of his band Spearhead. Thanks to my local PBS station, I was able to catch a great interview with Franti on his new documentary. On the program Franti played a new song called "Sweet Little Lies" --- if you can get a copy of the single or the new CD, go out and get it now!

The Green Mile

I'm a big fan of magical realism because like Fox Mulder ... I want to believe.

I finally caught THE GREEN MILE on tv the other day and it was a magical viewing. Yeah, the film is syrupy and don't expect Shakespeare but it is definitely the type of feel good flick most of us need every now and then. And while the story is old-fashioned and glacially paced, the superb cast is a delight to keep one company.

I wouldn't recommend making a concerted effort to track down a copy, but if you're not doing much one evening and this charming film comes along ... you won't be disappointed.

[image from amazon.com]

Friday, February 10, 2006

Read Slate!

I think Slate is an exceptional news magazine. It is also completely free and completely online.

I used to despise their advice column because I felt the columnist was haughty and thought we all lived in a high society 1920s novel. Anyway, the new columnist is Emily Yoffe. Yoffe used to write the "Human Guinea Pig" column in which she would try various occupations and hobbies ... from Beauty Contestant to Telephone Psychic. Yoffe is frank, funny, and practical. Her no nonsense advice seems very refreshing. I'm not too sure if the "Dear Prudence" (as the column is called) readers will enjoy this change ... but I will no longer skip this Slate column. Anyway, for those interested here's a link to the most recent column (Yoffe's first).

I guess last week was "Fashion Week" in New York. Over the years Slate has had some very interesting pieces on the world of fashion. While I still think it is a bit bloated and rather superficial ... there is a lot of serious work that goes into fashion. Anyway, I believe each year Slate has put together a slide show from one of the photographers at Fashion Week. Here's a link to the most recent slideshow. I just checked Slate and it looks like they other columns on Fashion Week. Here's a link to a brief history of the fashion show by Amanda Fortini. Followed by a link to Josh Patner's (a founder of design house Tuleh) backstage dispatch. Both Fortini and Patner have scribed previous fashion week columns for Slate and their pieces have been very interesting.

Also, for the poetry lovers out there Slate has a weekly poem spotlight. With Valentine's Day around the corner, none other than Robert Pinksy (who used to run the Slate poetry column) has selected a group of love poems that are very interesting indeed. For those interested, click here.

PS - I've just reread this post and I need a thesaurus because every third word is "interesting" --- how interestingly embarrassing.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Book Club Update

This is partly a repost from my other blog but I hope this will spark some interest and start some book club type posts.

A few years ago I was able to hear an absolutely enchanting short story on NPR's Selected Shorts. The piece was "The 5:22" by George Harrar. Anyway, check out George Harrar's website and his other short stories as well.

On the informal Blog Book Club, the wonderful Sage has another pair of book reviews. Check them out over on his blog.

I recently skimmed over Arthur Miller's The Crucible for school. In class we saw clips of the 1996 film --- which is pretty darn good as well.

I'm currently reading The Curious Incident ... which is really fantastic. I'll have a post on that when I finish it.

That completes this Book Club Update post.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Go Steelers!

A hearty congrats to the Pittsburgh Steelers for a great win over the dangerous Seattle Seahawks. Early on this wasn't the prettiest Super Bowl but after Willie Parker's 76 yard torpedo run and the graceful 'trickeration' of the Randle El TD pass to Hines Ward, Super Bowl XL had enough glitz and glamour on the field. Anyway, it was a great game to watch and, once again, congratulations to the Steelers.

PS - last week I had to point out how popular baring the midriff is for the women of earth. Well if anyone saw the Super Bowl halftime show, they know Mick Jagger is the girliest of them all. The old guy is pretty buff and still sporting a flat stomach if not a six-pack (I couldn't tell) ... but what kind of shirt was he wearing? It barely covered his nipples. Darn kids! Heh.

[image from SI.com]

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Howdy Folks

I hope everyone is having a nice weekend. I for one am looking forward to tomorrow's game. I'm sticking with a Steeler win but after watching a couple NFL analysts on ESPNEWS go with the Seahawks, perhaps the game will be closer than I expect. Which in the end is a good thing because a close score means a very competitive game.

And I will now leave you with another picture of a cute little dog. I believe this is a mini pomeranian but I'm not entirely sure. I'm still some time away from getting a dog of my own. However, I'm leaning towards a smaller dog since that will be easier to maintain (especially for a dog novice). Yet we all know what a guy with a cute little dog means ... G-A-Y. Anyway, I'll take a small mutt over a small, cutesy purebreed ... so perhaps that'll give off the manly vibe I so desperately need exude 24-7.

Special thanks to email buddy Courtney for the pic.

PS - is this a mininature pomeranian? does anyone know the dog breed?

Friday, February 03, 2006

Post of the Day

I don't know what to write about and that kind of sucks. Maybe I should go back to making fun of celebs but I was having trouble coming up with new stuff.

Does anyone watch THE WIRE or DEADWOOD on HBO? I don't have HBO but thanks to Netflix I can catch these HBO series on DVD. I've been a big THE WIRE fan ever since it started in 2003 or so. If you're looking for a gritty, realistic, insightful police procedural set in the tough inner-city of Baltimore ... then THE WIRE is for you.

If you're looking for a similar program on the Wild West of the late 1800s then check out DEADWOOD.

Anyway, this week is Fashion Week in NYC and I'm sure all the ladies and gays and metros are following it closely. Slate had some decent columns on it back in 2004 and 2003. As someone who needs some help in the attractibility (yes, that is not a word) department I like to think a little fashion can help out.

Now, I know I shouldn't be talking about women's fashion and you all can beat me up about this ... but I just have to say it. What's with exposing the midriff all over the place?!?!?!? I mean like every 3rd female on this planet is wearing an ensemble in which the midriff is slightly exposed. And it includes all types: tall, short, thin, pudgy, belly, six-pack, preggers, etc. And it includes all articles of clothing: shirts, blouses, sweaters, jackets, tank tops, etc. And one would think the weather would curb this trend, but it does not. Rain, sleet, or snow ... the midriff will be bared. I understand baring the midriff was all the rage 10 years ago when I was in high school but this fad has taken a life of its own. So women of the world, I implore you to ... kick back on the midriff baring and now that I have your attention ... how about a little more boobage baring. Thanks.

Next time: why low cut jeans aren't sexy. If I need to see some crack I'll call over the plumber or Whitney Houston.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Pet Corner

Mucho thanks to Ryan and Leigh for their pet links. Speaking of which I was on CentralPets.com looking at the far too many dog breeds when I came across this:

This ladies and gents is called a French Bulldog. This little guy is beyond cute but I always find these cutesy breeds a little strange. I think that's because I always think some mad scientist was behind the breeding and this dog was at one time the tinkerbell of the late 1800s.

Anyway, while these purebreds sure do look nice I think I would go with a mixed-bred from an animal shelter since those animals desperately need homes.

So this ends Pet Corner.

Super Bowl XL

The Super Bowl is almost upon us so it is about that time that I dig into my vast sports knowledge and pull out a supertastic prediction.

I like the Steelers to win since I'm a big fan of the team (players and coaches). However, Seattle isn't just going to roll over as they are a formidable opponent. The spread has the Steelers by 4, but I think the margin of victory might be slightly larger. I'm going with Steelers 28, Seahawks 20.

Hep! Hep!

Sometime in the future (probably a few years) I will become the proud owner/companion of a nice doggie. I'm pretty good with dogs, but I don't know much about them ... other than how to keep them company. Many of you (the blog buddies I call yall) have a dog, so I need your help. If you could recommend a website or book that would teach a dog novice a thing or two about caring for a pet dog, I would be grateful. Thanks!