Friday, December 19, 2008

Odd Fact

Bet you didn't know you could order Dave Mustaine (from Megadeth) blends of coffee.

Mustaine Blends at Networth Coffee (blends also available from Charlie Benante of Anthrax and wrestler Goldberg)

I trust no one more to satisfy my palate than the person that wrote the lyrics "I spread disease like a dog." I wish the names for the blends were more creative like Ashes in your Mouth blend or Brewing is my Business blend, etc...

If I drank coffee at all I would try it in an instant...Dave and the boys' music was a strong force in my life for many of my impressionable young years.

Weird Christmas Thoughts

Last night while trying to sleep - I have been semi-ill and sleeping even worse than normal - I had a weird thought about Christmas. I found it kind of absurd that Santa Clause keeps a Naughty and Nice List. It is supposed to be the holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ - I mean what happened to all the Sermon on the Mount stuff of turning the other cheek, giving to everyone who asks, and do unto others... How about "Judge not, lest ye be judged?" I understand trying to teach children to be good and do the right thing but this seems more like bribery and threats. Both of which I am NOT against but it definitely doesn't seem like the spirit of Christmas or Christianity. I am beginning to think the whole thing is a facade.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Two Minutes Hate Tuesday

Wrapping Presents

I can't tell you how much I hate wrapping presents. I do not have the patience to deal with measuring, cutting, and folding the wrapping paper. I still do it because I hate gift bags even more. I am the type of person who is only willing to cut the paper once (and the cut is by no means straight - it is jagged and sloping and generally looks like crap). Any extra paper just gets wrapped or folded around the box more...sometimes presents are covered in 2-3 layers. Yes, I am that lazy. My packages often have way too much paper on the ends and so it gets folded (or more likely just smashed down) to fit the package and then taped well. I try to look at it as my package having extra padding on the ends in case they are dropped. I also have an issue of getting the ends to match - one end ends up being way longer or one end is squared off and the other pointed or can't fold correctly because too much paper is causing the middle folds to hit or even they fold different directions. Admittedly my packages are a disaster. If I was to compete in the the 8-10 year old Special Olympics Present Wrapping Competition*, I would finish in about 7th place. Wrapping presents is a chore to me, a necessary evil in order to surprise the person with your actual gift. Gift giving shouldn't be work, it should be a joy. I hate it. It just feels like so much a waste of time when I know the person is going to just rip off the paper and throw it away five minutes later. Don't even get me started on all the different papers, ribbons, and bows...that just complicates everything exponentially.
Actually the second gift I wrap each year looks pretty good. The first one is always a disaster trying to get my fingers to remember what to do (and yes I'm way too lazy to take the paper off this abortion and re-wrap after all my tries, follies, and failures). But the second one looks good...then I realize that I just spent 40 minutes wrapping one gift, it is midnight, and I still have about 30 to get through. The rest are hasty affairs and corners are cut, folds are not exact, tape is used to help conceal the shabbiness of the wrapping job. I am definitely wrapping challenged and am not inclined to change my ways.

*Note - there is no such event and even if there was, there is no way that I would actually even be competitive enough to get 7th. Those athletes are spectacular and could best me in any event. They have all my respect.

End Hate

P.S. - Congratulations to Daron and Josh on your new iPod locks. Still one left if anyone is interested.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Favorite Things

Pinball: Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (SWE1:TPM)

Although it is not my favorite Star Wars movie, it is my favorite Star Wars themed pinball machine (There are 3, I've owned 2 and have pretty extensive time on the third). This is the only pinball machine that I have purchased new in box...for a few reasons. First, it came out at a time when I was finally able to afford a new pinball (after college with a decent paying job). Second, my brother and I now had some experience with pinball machines and were not nearly as intimidated as when we first got into the hobby. Third, it was the last pinball produced by my favorite pinball company Williams/Bally. We happened to tour the WMS factory during Pinball Expo 1999. We saw these machines being built on Oct 23rd, on Oct 25th Williams announced that it was closing its pinball division (Pinball Black Monday).

Admittedly it is not the best pinball machine out there, but it was the second of the Pinball 2000 (P2K) line, that offered many unique features and so many possibilities for the future. P2K was killed before it could come into its own (possibly the decision to kill pinball had been made years no matter how well it did, it would still have been doomed). For a great look at Pinball 2000's creation and demise check out the DVD: Tilt - The Battle to Save Pinball. An interesting watch for anyone interested in pinball, engineering, design, marketing, or business.

What is great about this pinball:
  • Projects video onto the playing surface - ball interacts with video.

  • There are other great points like the pivot-buttons around the regular flipper buttons, the neon light saber, etc... but the video is the main thing. It is impressive, it is a whole new way to play pinball. This should have been the future of pinball.

What went wrong:

  • It had too much Jar Jar Binks.

  • The pinball developers were not allowed to see the entire movie while they were working on designing the machine...I think the whole picture would have led them to better designs.

  • It was a rushed production on a new platform...this led to a quick design that doesn't have as many shots as a well planned pin.

  • Die hard Pinball Fans are resistant to change and hated the new system before it even came out (let alone have played it).

  • Due to production issues (and Lucas dictations that it could not in any way come out before the movie), the pinball came out a little over a month after the movie hit the that time all the publicity had died down and a lot of people didn't like the movie.

  • Short sightedness by the company. Williams should have given Pinball 2000 a couple years to develop and mature before cancelling (but the lure of slot machines was too strong).

It is an impressive machine. You can get a taste of what could have been...but you are left hungry for what never happened. It is an easier game than some of my others so beginners like it quite a bit. I often get the following comments - "This is so cool. I've never seen one like this" or "How come they didn't make any more?"

P2K - I mourn our loss of you. You are one of my favorite things.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Two Minutes Hate Tuesday

No Scammers

I understand people don't want to be scammed or else be bilked out of their hard earned money or merchandise. Do some people really think that adding "No Scammers" or the slightly more polite "No Scammers Please" to the bottom of their eBay auction, Craigslist posting, classified ad, or other internet post is really going to deter a scammer? Just imagine the scammer's thoughts:

Scammer #1 : "I think this guy sounds gullible to fall for our ____ scam (insert: winning lottery, Nigerian Prince, over-payment/refund, payment after sent, etc...)"
Scammer #2: "Oh yeah, sounds like a real hick. Easy pickings!"
Scammer #1: "Shit. Wait, wait, wait...never mind. It says 'No Scammers' at the bottom. We better not."
Scammer #2: "Fuck! So close...if only he didn't ban scammers by typing that! We're busted."

I just want to shake these people and yell "Do you really think a scammer is going to care if you type "No scammers" at the end of your ad? No. They are going to try to steal from you, why would they have morals about going against your description? It just makes you seem dumb. Do you think there is some kind of Robin Hood type, honor bound thief out there? Get a clue. Unfortunately, scamming pieces of crap are people that you have to deal with on the interwebicon. It has happened to me a couple times (credit card number theft and sellers on eBay who just disappear after being paid) but I don't let it ruin my interwebicon experience and I don't assume that everyone is a thief. If you can't handle the possibility that you might be taken at some point...stay off the interwebicon.

End Hate.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Mid December Updates

Go Meat!

After this weekend's games. The Iowa Chops have moved into first place in their division. First Place! I don't think they will stay there all season as the division is a very close race...but it is just nice to be able to say First Place. Never came close to saying that for the Iowa Stars...with them we were always like "They are only 5 points from fourth! If they win the next three games and Omaha loses, we will get in the playoffs!" It is a much better feeling starting out strong and I hope the Chops can continue this level of play throughout the rest of the season.

Check out your First Place Chops this Friday and Saturday at Wells Fargo Arena. You will be entertained (not only are they winning but they are also third in penalty minutes...our Chops love to throw down the gloves). Go Chops!

Bag of Crap
My B.o.C. finally arrived...woot! wasn't kidding when they used to say in their FAQ "that they shipped by the cheapest, slowest, most annoying way possible." That's paraphrased but not by much. What can I say, I paid $6 total and I did receive the product, so I am happy. So what did I get in my B.o.C.? Wonderful surprises? Long lost artifacts? 60" LCD TV? Sadly no.

Unfortunately, I do not really have a need for 3...actually even one since I don't have an iPod, so I will share the Bag of Crap love*. Send me an email through here or my profile page saying that you would like an iPod lock. Next week (probably on Dec 15th) I will randomly pick some winners next week, contact them for a shipping address, and send them out - hopefully for arrival by Christmas.
*This will only be available to people within the United States of America, and I am the final judge and decider of who wins (although I will be as fair as possible). Any selection that doesn't reply with a shipping address within a week will have their prize re-awarded to someone else...I don't want them laying around my house any longer than necessary.

Also contained in my B.o.C was this Lowepro Ridge 10, Digital Camera Bag (Amazon $8.95). Not too bad. I am going to probably give it to my niece America (human) as I know she is getting a digital camera for Christmas. Luckily my parents have crappy dial-up interwebicon that they never use, so I know I am not going to be ruining any surprises here.
All in all, I can't say that I was totally blown away by my Bag of Crap...but again it was a Bag of Crap so as long as it is not sitting on my front porch in flames I guess I am good. As I've said before, to me it is not about what I actually get, it is more about the hope and the Christmas like suspense that not knowing creates. My heart was full of joy when I saw the package sitting on my front porch. I am happy with my Bag of Crap and look forward to the next opportunity to buy Hope.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

A Few of my Favorite Things

Although I am mostly dead inside and walk though this life like a zombie who has lost his will to feast on brains, there are a few subjects that agitate my cold, thick blood into a state similar to passion. These include (in no particular order):

  • Pinball

  • Hockey

  • Shoes

  • Books

  • Music

  • Quirky TV shows

  • Puzzles/Games/Trivia

There are others...but these are the main passions in my life. For my own amusement, I am going to try to start profiling one of my favorites here each week...figure I am already doing a "Hate" post, might as well do a "Love" post too. Unfortunately, love is always more difficult for me than my default emotion of hate...and so I don't know if it will have a standard day of love like I do hate.

This is one of my loves:

Quirky TV Show: Pushing Daisies

Pushing Daisies is a very stylized show and might take a little getting used to. It reminds me of Tim Burton style, but not sad, depressed, dark Tim Burton - this would be a Tim Burton who is happy and loves bright, bold colors...odd architectural design, odd coloring, little touches that make it seem like a dream. I think a lot of the look has to due with Barry Sonnefeld directing and Bruce Cohen producing (he did produce The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas, so he can have horrible taste too - although I admit that Stephen Baldwin as Barney was an inspired choice and has led to me renaming him Barney Baldwin).

The show is really well written and often has a strange way of telling the story. For example, flashbacks will have the narrator giving the exact age of the participants (i.e. - Ned is exactly 9 years, 5 months, 23 days, 8 hours, 12 minutes, and 4 seconds old). I am not sure why I find this so appealing but it is just an odd level of detail that adds a lot to the story for me. The writing isn't straightforward funny like a sitcom like The Office, but it does have a lot of much more subtle humor and the drama and characters are well written enough to be believable and endearing.

So what is this show all about? Ned is a pie maker. The show is about him and his co-workers and a private eye who helps them solve murders. What that doesn't make sense? No, not really...until you hear that the Ned (the pie maker) can bring the dead back to life by touching them. This is also how he makes pies, turning rotten fruit into the most lively and delicious fruit you have ever tasted. But like with Mogwai there are rules:

  1. Touch a dead thing once and it becomes alive

  2. Touch the thing brought back to life again and it is dead forever

  3. Bring something back to live for more than 60 seconds - something comparable must die in its place (bring a dog back to life, an animal about the size of a dog will in turn the victim is picked is unknown but it must be in close proximity)

The gist is that Ned along with a private eye, bring murder victims back to life to find out who killed them, thereby solving the murder and collecting rewards. Follow the rules and everything is great...but like in Gremlins rules are broken and everything gets complicated and that is where the fun starts.

Complications (just a few):

  • Ned has brought his first girlfriend Charlotte (aka Chuck) back to life after she was murdered.

  • Ned loves Chuck but can not touch her again...ever (he also hasn't been able to touch his dog in about 20 years).

  • Ned's co-worker Olive is secretly in love with Ned and therefore jealous of Chuck but doesn't understand their relationship since they never touch

  • Chuck's aunts, who raised her after her father's death (accidentally killed by Ned after he brought his mom back to life when he was 9 years old), think that Chuck is dead but love pie from the Pie Hole

  • Chuck's aunt is secretly her mom

It all makes for a good show (though it sounds horrible...but again it might take a little getting used to. It is one of my favorite shows of the past couple years and the only show I watch on ABC (Wednesdays 7pm Central). Unfortunately, it is strange enough that I think it has a hard time finding an audience and is probably in danger of being canceled (although I really hope not).

  • Reanimated corpses - Check

  • Aunt who wears an eye patch (which always matches her outfit) and used to perform as a synchronized swimming mermaid - Check

  • People who keep nothing but cheese in their refrigerator making their young niece think it is called "The Cheese Box" - Check

  • Private Eye who knits in order to relax - Check

  • Unrequited love - Check

  • Amusing deaths - Check

  • Always a twist - Check

  • A restaurant named The Pie Hole - Check

It can't really be explained without watching, which is why it is probably in trouble...but give it a try.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Two Minutes Hate Tuesday

Katy Perry - I Kissed a Girl

Why does anyone like this song?
  • The music is generic pop/dance type music. Pretty indistinguishable from 100 other songs in the past couple years.
  • The lyrics pretty lame - really? "liked it" and "chapstick" do not rhyme...not even when you stretch out the i.
  • Vocals are too over processed - not as bad as Kanye, but bad enough that it drives me nuts.
  • The theme may have been slightly risqué when Jill Sobule did it 13 years ago (and did it better), but is now pretty tired and blasé.

Lipstick Lesbian, Lesbian Chic, etc... are not really edgy any more. I really didn't think it was that edgy 10+ years ago when it first started getting popular. I guess I don't see why people think this song is so subversive. I guess it might be edgy to some preteens or something but should not be to anyone who is an adult...well maybe a Mormon (not to slight Mormons but the ones I have met have led pretty sheltered lives - not necessarily a bad thing). It just makes me sad when music like this becomes popular and actual good music falls through the cracks.

Katy Perry - you may have kissed a girl but that doesn't make your music good.

End Hate

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Two Minute Hate Tuesday

Iowa State Choose Your Own Adventure Commercials

Central Iowans have probably seen the ISU's Choose Your Own Adventure commercials. They started out last year (maybe two) with semi-famous / semi-prominent people who went to ISU giving a kind of high point tour of the college. I think one was a playwright and the next was a journalist...I don't really remember because I've already graduated from college and don't plan on going back. The commercials would feature the person in various places around the college campus saying "This is where I..." - studied for chemistry, decided to try a one person play, was told that I would make a great journalist, etc... Nothing really spectacular but still vaguely interesting about how their college careers had changed along the way. I thought this was a pretty good college slogan because like a Choose Your Own Adventure book, you are often trying different paths and not sure where you will end up. It is all part of the journey. Well played ISU.

This year the commercials have devolved into supposedly current students (they could be students, they could be actors - I don't know), just randomly saying stuff that they want to do or know. Here is an example:

I understand what it is trying to say: There is a lot that you can do and explore at Iowa State but they always seem to throw in one stupid desire that has nothing to do with the school. In this case, it is "Be in a band." Sure there are various bands in the music department, but I don't think this is what she is talking about. Even this is mild compared to some of the other commercials. The one the drives me crazy is this dork saying all these things like "I want to cover a major news story. No, I want to be in a major news story...." Of course, he doesn't specify what part of a major news story he wants to be in, so lets all assume that he ends up getting busted for Date Rape. This ad ends with the stupidest line I have ever heard in a college commercial (let me emphasize EVER): "I want to know what a quesadilla is." A quesadilla? Really? You are 17 years old (at minimum) and you don't know what a quesadilla is? There are no Taco Bells in your town? Here you go: Quesadilla...I just saved you 4 years and $40,000. Sorry to say it but I don't think college is going to help you. You will probably be too distracted by such strange and foreign objects as Tacos, Spaghetti, and Canadian out for the Sweet and Sour Oriental Chicken, it is a real doozy. I don't want to blow your mind. Really...this is the kind of student that ISU wants to attract? Someone who doesn't know what a quesadilla is. Talk about celebrating mediocrity.

End Hate.

Monday, November 24, 2008

60% Dork (part II)

I really love this Millennium Falcon quilt from Pottery Barn for kids. But at $220 for a queen it is too much for me...but maybe if it goes on sale. It really does have to be seen in person as the picture does not do it justice. It is a handsome piece of bedding for any Star Wars dork. Seeing the Millennium Falcon jetting through hyperspace on my bedspread makes my insides feel all squishy.
Bad news: I am calling No-Shave November off for the year. I think my kinda-beard looks like crap (although GF-Unit says she likes it...and Hetero Life-Pal CT thinks it will be good for the winter). It is also itchy...and I hate being itchy. So No-Shave November is over for me tonight!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Good, the Bad, and the Woot

Yesterday was a Woot Off at And yes I was aiming to score a Bag of Crap again. The Woot Off is an event full of anxiety for me...constantly reloading, worrying that I am going to miss the BoCs...and I so want one! All day long, I was reloading, waiting, reloading, waiting (and I still managed to get a lot of work done!)...until the Holy Grail of the Woot Off the appeared. Shimmering on my computer screen like a mirage oasis to someone in the desert: Bag of Crap. Buy! Buy! Buy! I click the button and it comes back with "Server Too Busy." Reload. Shit! Stupid computers, why do you always do this to me? I have had a horrible couple weeks...please god, give me a bag of crap. I don't know if I can take this disappointment. Buy!

This time I was successful! Well kind of. I was able to order a bag of crap but the server was so busy that I was not able to maximize my crap purchase to three craps. After trying to change the quantity to three for a while, I had the feeling that I was going to lose out on crap again so finally just hit complete order...hoped the three would still pull through somehow but it was not to be. I am pretty sure that I was correct on the timing because the site started showing that the item was sold out before my order confirmation loaded. But finally my order was confirmed. Good hath triumphed over evil that day. The sun briefly shone through the clouds and the Bag of Crap was mine.

What will I get? Who knows? Most likely it will be something that is totally junk, something that I will end up just throwing in my "free box" at home full of stuff that anyone can take or it will get donated to Good Will. Something that will make me feel like I wasted my $6 and I will feel ripped off (even though they told me many times that it was a Bag of Crap). However, this goes beyond the physical goods that I will receive...until I open that package it could be anything. It could be that 60" LCD TV that is just missing the remote. It could be. To me, that hope, that excitement, that flush of anxiousness is worth the $6 for the next couple weeks...even if all I do get is a bag of crap in the end.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Two Minutes Hate Tuesday

Myspace / Facebook

Yes, I have accounts on both (a necessary evil)...but that doesn't mean I can't hate them. I do. I think it is a great concept but I don't think it is executed properly and the whole experience just leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth. I don't really go to either much any more because I like blogging here so much better.

A lot of it has to do with the "friend" concept on these sites. It seems that for many people it is just to get as many virtual friends as possible. I want to keep it to a close bunch of friends, acquaintances, and people I find interesting...but others don't understand this. Just because I've met you for 5 minutes in real life does not mean we are friends, so why should be be friends on Myspace? I really don't care about you, any of your updates, or want to contact you. This is especially true for people I work with...seriously don't I see you enough?

Even worse than that are the random people that send you friend invites (I'm not even talking about the spam erotic site friend requests) and don't include a message or even worse have their profile set to private so that I can't read it to see if we have anything in common. They could be a murderer, terrorist, or white supremacist. I wouldn't want to be their friend in that case as I am not friends with those people in real life. I will often send a message asking who they are, why they want to be friends and if they have ever killed someone, hijacked anything, or believe in a master race. I usually don't get a reply...I guess you really wanted to be friends, huh? If I do get a response it is often like "I just wanted to be friends, sorry to piss you off. I thought that is what people did on myspace." It is...but I know nothing about you except for a 1" x 1.5" picture and that you have some stupid band quote in your profile (and by the way, I hate that band and I do not think you are an intellectual for using that quote).

I also hate the people that have songs start playing as soon as you load their page. That is so annoying. Not only do you have bad taste in music but you are trying to force it down my throat. I usually already have music playing when I am at my computer so I really don't want to be interrupted by your favorite little death metal band that no one else has heard of. I do give exception to this rule for pages that are maintained by bands themselves. In this case, I am going there expressly to check them out so I don't mind.

Everyone also wants to do their own layout and have their own backgrounds to express their individuality...which is fine (I guess) unless you have no taste (neon green lettering on a bright orange background) or if you are just going to download it from a site that makes page templates (that does not make you original, in fact the opposite). Not to mention, most people have no design skill and their page ends up more confusing than anything. Oh and black on black doesn't make you cool, tough, mysterious, or evil. It just makes your page hard to read.

Admittedly Facebook is better than Myspace in many of these regards but it does still has many of the same annoyances. Plus - I really don't have time to check out that virtual muppet you sent me (and I love muppets see previous post - send me that muppet in real life!), don't care about the virtual plant you sent me for my virtual garden (and how does that help the environment), don't want to join your mob war, don't want to join your fan club, don't want your virtual jewelry or cookies. I know you put a little time and effort into this and that was nice...but next time just send me a message telling me how you are doing. It will be more meaningful.

Don't get me wrong, I think both have a lot they can offer people. I do like how I can get updates about my actual friends but the whole package is just not for me...and yes, I have tried (I've even gone on a couple dates with people I met through myspace = horrible). I just can't stand these services for more than a couple minutes at a time and don't understand how people can spends hours and hours on them. I do find Mydeathspace interesting though.

End Two Minutes Hate

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Best Christmas Present of the Year

The Muppet Show is one of the best things EVER. I am a big fan of Jim Henson and all that he has accomplished for the puppet trade. Labyrinth is still one of my top 10 movies. Right now, I have The Muppet Wizard of Oz on DVR waiting to be watched. If I had any vocal talent, I would have loved to be a puppet engineer. But you can still be an amateur muppet technician with your personally designed muppet from FAO Schwarz. Only $90. You choose the body, nose, eyes, hair, and clothing. If I had any extra cash right now I would already have one on the way, but no I am trying to save and get the credit cards all paid off. I can dream that someone will get me an awesome muppet for Christmas. I have just spent an hour playing with their muppet generator.

I think the Lounge Jacket with the Bow Tie is especially handsome on a muppet.


I forgot to mention that all photos in the wedding post were taken by GF-Unit and thus I suppose copyrighted. If you need a photographer she can be hired by contacting her at

I would also like to say that this Blog has now paid for itself (wait it's free...but time wise I guess) because after reading the Wedding Post Hedda reimbursed me the $15 for Big Booty White Girls 4 movie that Ryan rented on my credit card. Thanks Hedda, I always knew you were awesome!

CHOPS play tonight. Be sure to check it out if you have a chance, it is a great time and much better hockey than we had in previous years. Come by section 103 and join us in a chant of "Sieve...Sieve...Sieve...Sieve. It's all your fault, it's all your fault, it's all your fault," as the Chops beat the tar out of San Antonio again! Plus it's Thirsty Thursday $1 Beer Night. Game starts at 7pm.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Two Minutes Hate Tuesday

I am full of hate. I hate a lot of things. I might not be as full of hate and angst as I was when I was younger but still I have hate a plenty. So I thought I would start a Two Minutes Hate on Tuesdays to share my hate with all the world (or the 7 people that read this). If there is hate in your heart, let it out. - Clayton Bigsby, black white supremacist.

Magazine Renewals & Inserts
You know those renewal and crappy product information cards in magazines? I hate all varieties.
  • The ones that are inserted loosely in the magazine to fall out all over the floor as soon as you open it are annoying but easily disposed. Although why do you want to make my house dirty? I should not have to pickup after you magazine. If this is an attempt to get me to renew it is having the opposite effect, it reminds me that your magazine is full of garbage.
  • The renewal forms that are printed on thick card stock and then bound in the magazine - these suck because I like randomly flipping through magazines. These thick cards prevent random flipping and I am always opening to the exact same spot. Even after ripping these out and tossing them, there is still usually a stub that totally ruins my randomization. Any product printed on these, I will not even consider as I already hate it for annoying me. And really besides the three loose insert renewals do I need another 5 or 6 bound throughout the magazine? I only need to renew once (and chances are I am going to do that through the interwebicon anyways), I am definitely not going to recommend this magazine to 6 other people EVER - let alone this month. Let's be honest, you are just not that good of a magazine.
  • But the absolute worst is the big card stock cover glued to the original cover of the magazine. I mean it blocks the entire cover, makes the magazine look totally unappealing, and it is near impossible to remove it without ripping the actual magazine cover (and even if you accomplish this there is often a sticky residue on the spine). Nothing will make me hate your magazine more or make that issue get tossed in the garbage faster. I am not even going to leave that piece of crap in the bathroom for others to peruse. I will randomly flip through it - get pissed at the non randomness because of the stupid renewal cards and throw it away without reading it. Your efforts to get me to renew have now failed, I will not be back.

End Two Minutes Hate

Friday, November 7, 2008

60% Dork

I have long known that I am a dork. I've always enjoyed all the dorky things in life - Tolkien (long before the movies), Star Wars, Star Trek, D&D, Dr Who, sci-fi, fantasy, comic books, action figures...that type thing. I agree more with Dwight on the If it is dorky, I will usually like it. I just have never known how dorky. Hetero Life-Pal CT and I once went to a Star Trek cost $15 - I was expecting maybe $5. I was very disappointed in the whole experience, so I could always say "At least I am not THAT dorky..."

Star Wars was always one of my biggest dork weaknesses - Yes, I have watched all three original movies in a single night. Yes, I saw all the re-releases on opening night. Yes, I can quote way too many Star Wars lines. Yes, I have bought the Star Wars soundtrack on more than one occasion. What can I say? Going to see Star Wars in the theater is one on my earliest memories.

When Marc Ecko Cut & Sew came out with his Boba Fett hoodie last year, I thought "I am not dorky enough to spend $100 on a Star Wars hoodie." Although I think there are tons of cool Star Wars toys available now (have you seen the Lego Star Destroyer? Awesome.) I have always avoided buying them...not wanting to be the middle-age Star Wars collecting dork who proclaims his religion as The Force. Secretly though, I coveted the hoodie and had little day dream fantasies of wearing it. Today, they are having a 40% off sale. I found out that I must be 60% dork because that seemed a reasonable price to pay (still a little high for a hoodie but at least palatable).

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Well people like that reform. Maybe we should get us some.

I'm not big into the old politicin'. I know it is a fantastic part of country and I believe in it, I really do. It just usually isn't for me for many reasons:
  • Most the time, I couldn't really care less and am bored with all the politics and TV/radio ads by January - so by the time that the actual election comes around, I literally hate everyone involved.
  • I am usually pretty familiar with the main people running for the main positions (i.e. president, governor, state senator, etc...), but the other positions are often just a list of names that I know nothing about. Do I randomly pick someone? Do I pick a name that may be slightly familiar? Do I do as me and CT do on NTN trivia if we don't know and go with a name that is either noticeably longer or shorter than the rest? Do I choose a name that sounds nice or has cool alliteration? Do I choose C? This choice makes me feel anxious because I don't want to pick someone that sucks but how can I choose anyone if I don't know anything about them. I don't need that stress. I should study more before I reach the voting booth but seriously I am not going to remember the majority of the lesser positions any way. So I let someone who cares enough to learn or at least cares enough to randomly choose a name pick.
  • I hate that there are really only two feasible parties. There needs to be more variety. Yes, I know there was the Green party, the Libertarian party, etc... on the ballot but since the two party system is so ingrained into US politics they have no real chance. I would like to see more candidates that can encompass more values from all the parties. I don't like that for the most part we seem to be "For Us" or "Against Us" when it comes to political parties. I can't seem to vote a straight party ticket, I have to vote for each person and position in their own right because I don't just want a "party drone" I want an individual that can think for himself and know when to tell the rest of his party to fuck off.
  • The majority of the reason that I usually haven't voted is because I have been of the idea/opinion that there would be slight differences in styles and policies between presidents but with all their (presumably intelligent) advisers, cabinet members, checks and balances that for the major issues, the important issues - that presidents would all do pretty much the same job. With the W administration increasing the president's power, eliminating checks and balances, and deteriorating our civil rights - I no longer believe this.

This year is the first year that I have voted since my first eligible year to vote (1992). I did vote for Obama although I can see why people would vote for McCain. It's not that I didn't like McCain, I voted for Obama because he is a much more charismatic leader. I think that is the type of leader that will be able to rally people to change the country (hopefully for the better) and also keep people encouraged in the bad times (like the situation with the economy). I think both candidates would have made decent presidents...I just think that Obama seems a little bit more like a leader. Someone that I would follow. I hope he can help put our country back on track to being respected, rather than being seen as a bully. I hope he realizes that the government has over-stepped in bounds in the name of security and reinstates civilian rights and governmental checks and balances. I hope that Obama can lead our country out of a state of fear and that someday I will be able to fly again with my shampoo and without having to take off my shoes. I am hopeful that change has come and it will be change for the better. (I would hope all the same if McCain had won).

Some of my voting tips:

  • Always vote not to re-elect judges and sheriffs. They have too much power to get complacent or comfortable enough that they feel they can start abusing their power.
  • Vote for a person not their party.
  • Feel free to write yourself in for any position where you don't feel comfortable making a choice.
  • If you can vote for more than one candidate for a post still keep it limited to what you know. Just because you can vote for up to four people doesn't mean you have to...make your top picks count, don't dilute them for just for the sake of voting.
  • Don't vote for the guy with the midget - no matter how stumpy...he is really a white supremacist and not a "friend of the little man."
  • If you don't want to vote - DON'T! Don't let someone try to talk you into it if you don't want to (then you are doing what they want). This is a democracy - you can choose or not. That's what is great about it. Is voting a Right? Yes. But you don't have to take advantage of it if you don't want to. So is "keeping and bearing arms" and I don't own a gun (...yet) and I don't feel bad about that. I especially like when someone tries to tell me that "If you don't vote, then you can't complain." Of course I can! I didn't vote for the person.

OK enough politicin'. I hope the coverage is over soon...because I have long been sick of it. If I hear "Joe the Plumber" one more time, I am going to snap and kick that person in the shins. You will (most likely) not hear another word about it from me.

Monday, November 3, 2008

You Fools

On Saturday, my younger brother Ryan married Hedda - his longtime gf-unit. Truthfully, I am not sure how he suckered her into it. Hedda is great and I don't know if Ryan could have found a better woman (I mean any girl that watches Big Booty White Girls 4 with you can't be that bad right? - Yeah you guys still owe me $15 from that!). Ryan on the other hand, I had written off from the gene pool long ago when he nicknamed himself Odie Joey Dinky. He had no brain when he was younger, I was sure he was going to Darwin himself at some point. But his brain seems to have kicked in sometime in the last ten years and he was smart enough not to let Hedda get away... How she puts up with him I don't know - it must be love or something.

It was a little ceremony and reception at Living History Farms - the one downside was that I had to be a groomsman. I thought the rehearsal was a waste of time since I am pretty good at both walking and standing, usually being able to do both on demand without much practice. At least, I wasn't the Pastor like my internet ordained older brother (ha ha!). I really wanted him to go "Wuv, Twue wuv..." ala The Princess Bride, but it was not to be...It will so happen at my wedding (if that ever comes about).
I am not a big fan of fact this is the first one that I have been to in 10 years or so. I even skipped out on Hetero Life-Pal CT's wedding (and then made his wife not like me for a while by writing "Demonic Rituals" in the memo field of the check I sent them - I thought it was funny). Now that I have been to one wedding and had a decent enough time, it does not mean you should be expecting me at any future weddings that I should be invited to. This one was a favor for my was a one time deal. If you invite me, there is a 98.2% chance that I will not come.
Here is a picture of me looking awesome (as always):

Congratulations Ryan & Hedda - You guys are awesome (and had good ham at the reception).

Monday, October 27, 2008

The Long Goodbye - I hate it

Not the book or the movie...the act itself. I hate long goodbyes. When I say something like "Well, I better go," that means I want to leave - now. I am not one of those people who plays the "No, you hang up first," "No, you" game. Chances are after I have said goodbye, the phone is already away from my ear and my thumb reaching for disconnect. I'll probably hear you say goodbye back to me but it will be from a distance. I am this way on the phone (both personally and professionally...I know they say that customer service agents are never supposed to hang up first but I always did) as well as, in person. Yeah, I'll stick around for a quick goodbye and hug and kiss (depending on our relationship) but I really don't want this to last longer than a minute or two and if it is only 30 seconds then all the better.

Unfortunately, the GF-Unit has a problem with this...dragging out goodbyes for 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 30 minutes, even an hour or more. She has no idea how much this irritates me. When I say "I (or You) should probably go," that means just that. Go. It could be many reasons - I need to do other things, I am tired, I am frustrated, I have had enough of you for today, etc... but it all comes down to: I want to part company as soon as possible.

The other week this came up when GF-Unit was over one night. It was a night we hadn't planned of seeing each other, so I already had a list of stuff in my head that I wanted to accomplish. Circumstances brought us together and I thought we had a decent night together but eventually I was in the mood for no more that night. I knew the longer she stayed the more annoyed I would get, not at her...but at the situation and that she was there. I suggested that she should go. She started to go but then was all sad about it, so started dragging it out. We tried talking about it and I was urging her to go while trying not to hurt her feelings. It wasn't working too well, so it got to the point where I just said "I don't want you to be sad...I just want you to leave."

I know, I know, I am not the most sensitive person in the world. At the time I was about 60% joking, 40% serious. It made me crack up when I said it...and I think it made her laugh a little after the initial shock. But it was true, I didn't want her to be sad (really), I just didn't want to deal with her any more that night...I wanted to do some of the things I already had planned. I knew we would be spending plenty of time together over the coming weeks - more days than not, and I never get the things around the house done like cleaning, dishes, laundry, repairs, improvements,etc... So I really wanted to use this night to get a little bit done.

No lasting harm done (I think)...and a Classic Quote from me (I think), so it is all for the best. But really, I do hate long goodbyes. If I had more to say, I would have said it earlier before I felt spent with the whole deal. If you keep it short and sweet, I will go away much happier and start missing you. Long goodbyes are just mentally draining and numbing.

Monday, October 20, 2008

How to Name a Band

Stolen from my Hetero Life Pal CT's blog. I usually don't blog this kind of stuff because I look at it like one of those crappy forwarded emails...that cause me to sigh, delete, and reply "Do you think I am stupid?" Seriously, why would Microsoft/AOL give you money for forwarding an email...but even more importantly why are you still forwarding this crap to me 5 years later that when I first received it? Oh and by the way, that Nigerian Prince thing might not be on the up and up. I really liked the info I got from this: the name, the album title, the artwork - I would buy it! I've bought albums for fewer reasons. Click the links on the info to see where they came from).

  1. Go to first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

  2. Go to Random quotations: last four words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album. (If you want to do this again, you'll hit refresh to generate new quotes, because clicking the quotes link again will just give you the same quotes over and over again.)

  3. Go to flickr's "explore the last seven days" picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

My Band Name: Hütter Hü 136

My Album Title: don't have a J.O.B.

My Album Cover:

Friday, October 17, 2008

The American Dream

Instead of spending Thursday evening at Billy Joe's with Hetro Life Pal CT (it was a crap movie that neither of us wanted to pay for - even though I do like the eyes of the dumb girl from Mean Girls), I spent the night building a kit dollhouse for my niece, America (human). America (human) doesn't have a dollhouse so I figured that instead of using a cardboard box as a shanty house, I would get her one for Christmas. I figured that I could buy a plastic prefab Barbie type house or I could get a kit and put a little effort into it and make something custom made for her. About 6 hours in, I was wishing I had opted for the Barbie crap shack. I did persevere at last - 300+ pieces, half a bottle of wood glue, 8 hours, and much cursing later it looked like this at 2am.

Not too bad for $30. Next up will be some light sanding, painting, and using some of the wood scraps to build some furniture and accessories...and maybe adding a light. Then the unveiling at Christmas, talking her into a subprime adjustable rate mortgage, and foreclosure next summer. The American Dream in action for America (human).

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hockey Looking Good

The Iowa Chops played their first regular season game on Friday. After three years of Iowa Stars hockey and management, I was optimistic but trying not to get my hopes too high. I was very pleased with the game. Our new team is big, tough, physical, and talented. They didn't give up when they were down 3-0 and scored 5 unanswered goals to win. It was a great game. The crowd was wild and crazy. The Chops went on to win the next night but lost a close game on Sunday...three games in a row is a little much, I am sure our guys were tired. I would strongly suggest checking them out this season for an entertaining evening. Remember to check out number 6 - Bobby Ryan (or Ricky Bobby as we like to call him since he has two first names). Ryan was the number 2 draft pick in 2005 (second only to Sidney Crosby). Ryan is NHL quality and will be lighting the lamp in Anaheim soon enough - I figure he is only playing down here for the first part of the season so the Ducks don't have to pay him all the bonuses he would get as a full time NHLer...thereby staying within the salary cap and saving him for the playoff grind at the end of the season. He is one you must see while you have the chance but we have many other talented players as well. Your next chance to check out the chops is this Friday and Saturday at Wells Fargo Arena. I'll be there in section 103 (as usual) so stop bye and say hello.
Go Meat!

Picture Stolen from -

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Call me Patient Zero

I have been sick since Saturday. Stomach ache, cramps, diarrhea cha cha cha. I have spent the last four days either on the couch or on the toilet. The couch was much preferable, because even the softest toilet paper now feels like 80 grit sandpaper to my backside. So unfortunately, I missed golfing with my bro (boo), missed the Chops pre-season game (boo), and missed 2 days of work (yay). It was not one of those illnesses where I could enjoy my time off even a little bit as mostly I was in some form of extreme discomfort most of the time. While wasting my days in the bathroom, I did get a good start on The Golden if any good had come from this illness, I guess that would be it. Also I ate an entire box of Townhouse Crackers within a 24 hour period...not a record for me, but at least I had an excuse this time "I had an upset stomach and crackers are supposed to calm it." That sounds better than "I just really, really like crackers."

Since I have been sick it seems that everyone else around me has been sick too - two of my brothers and one of their GFs, my boss, and a couple friends. I guess I must be patient zero in this epidemic since I don't know who I got it I apologize to anyone I know that has been feeling sick the last week.

If being sick for four days wasn't enough, I have also contracted Urushiol-Induced Contact Dermatitis (aka Poison Ivy). I am highly allergic to poison ivy and often don't even have to touch it to contract it. Just getting close is enough for me, there is often enough oil in the air to affect me. I wasn't always this way, when young I never had a reaction to poison ivy and sometimes would flaunt this to people by purposely playing with it (and once even eating it). I now know this was incredibly stupid because people's resistance to it weakens over time and with each contact. I am paying for that young foolishness now. I have contracted a poison ivy rash every summer since my first one at age 19. I thought I was going to escape this summer...but the camping must have done me in. It has now been almost two weeks, I shouldn't get any more outbreaks...just have to wait for the ones I have to heal.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

A Strange Week

This week has been very strange and varied for me.

Roughing It

It started off camping at Acorn Valley over the weekend. Why camping? I am still not quite sure, but it was something different to do and probably the last really nice weekend to do it. It was a good time...nothing special but nice to get away from hectic pace of normal life. Plus a little naughtyness in the woods is always fun. We were at campsite 61 which was far enough away from most other people yet close to bathrooms, forest trails, and the playground. Our tent was a little smaller and a little more rustic than the one pictured above.

High Culture

Tuesday was the first show in this year's Civic Center season ticket package. It was a play called Frost/Nixon, about the way that the admittance of wrongdoing and subsequent apology came about years after he resigned. It was entertaining but I wouldn't call it engrossing. It didn't really make me think much or enlighten me in some way, it just filled a couple hours with something besides TV or video games. Would I have paid to see it if it wasn't part of the season ticket package? No, but I don't feel that it was a waste of time either. Elvis was not mentioned. Looking forward to Spamalot (again)!

A Journey to the Past

Wednesday, we (me, GF-Unit, Kinda-Kid) went to WFA to see Walking with Dinosaurs Live. It was a really good show. I thought it seemed a little short but it was a very entertaining show (if you have any interest in dinosaurs). The dinos looked pretty realistic and cool. The Kinda-Kid knew the big dinos were fake right away because there was a car thing between their legs that drove them around (although it was disguised so it wasn't completely distracting). The smaller dinos (raptors, baby t-rex, etc...) that were people in suits had him fooled for about half the show. He finally realized that you could see the actor's legs about halfway through the show. They all did a very good job, the dinosaurs moved very realistically and if you used a little imagination you could pretend they were real. We got the cheaper tickets (around $25/ea) and it was well worth that price. I don't know if it is worth the higher $60 ticket price - to me probably not, but I felt I got my money's worth for what I paid. I had a good time and I don't think the Kinda-Kid will forget the show any time soon. If you have young-ish children, I would suggest giving it a shot.

Familial Stupidity Part 1 (vicariously)

Tonight (Thursday), I am going with Hetero-Life Pal CT to Billy Joes to see Step Brothers. I think it looks hilarious and need a good laugh after the past few weeks of crappy movies. Also there is the added plus of bar food. I am not sure if the mini-corn dogs are calling my name or if I am hungry for something else this will have to be a game time decision.

A Literary Event
Borders bookshop is haveing their Educator's Appreciation Weekend. There is a reception Friday night. I am not an educator but GF-Unit is (or is studying to be), so she really wants to check it I just find it hard to turn down going to a bookstore for any reason.

Familial Stupidity Part 2 (in person)

Sunday morning, my brother is gathering a bunch of friends together for a golf tournament...I think it is basically his bachelor party since it is opposite his fiance's bridal shower. I suck at golf, but I always have fun. Noonan.

Slap Shot

The Iowa Chops first pre-season game takes place at the Buccaneer Arena. It technically has free admission but I think they are asking for a $7 donation to Youth Hockey. I am excited to see the Chops in action. I am looking forward to a winning season for once. You should will be fun.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Happy Banned Books Week

This week is Banned Books week...the week when we celebrate the freedom of choice and the freedom of expression. Just because someone write something that you don't agree with does not mean that it is wrong or that other people will not enjoy reading it. Banning books is one of the first steps to destroying our freedoms and individuality. Here are the top ten books that had complaints filed against them in 2007 (wow, not a Harry Potter? it has been a while since that happened)...and the top ten of the 21st century (through 2005 at least) I suggest you read them all.

10 Most Challenged Books of 2007

  1. And Tango Makes Three,” by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell - Reasons: Anti-Ethnic, Sexism, Homosexuality, Anti-Family, Religious Viewpoint, Unsuited to Age Group
  2. "The Chocolate War,” by Robert Cormier - Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Violence
  3. Olive’s Ocean,” by Kevin Henkes - Reasons: Sexually Explicit and Offensive Language
  4. The Golden Compass,” by Philip Pullman - Reasons: Religious Viewpoint
  5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain - Reasons: Racism
  6. The Color Purple,” by Alice Walker - Reasons: Homosexuality, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language,
  7. "TTYL,” by Lauren Myracle - Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group
  8. "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” by Maya Angelou - Reasons: Sexually Explicit
  9. It’s Perfectly Normal,” by Robie Harris - Reasons: Sex Education, Sexually Explicit
  10. "The Perks of Being A Wallflower,” by Stephen Chbosky - Reasons: Homosexuality, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

10 Most Challenged Books of the 21st Century (2000-2005)

  1. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
  2. "The Chocolate War,” by Robert Cormier
  3. Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
  4. "Of Mice and Men" by John Steinbeck
  5. "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” by Maya Angelou
  6. "Fallen Angels" by Walter Dean Myers
  7. It’s Perfectly Normal,” by Robie Harris
  8. Scary Stories series by Alvin Schwartz
  9. Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey
  10. "Forever" by Judy Blume

I find it depressing that some people in this country must try to tell others what to think or read. I think most people are smart enough to read what they like and avoid what they don't, so do we really need to ban a book? Only because you are afraid of it. Books are books and most people will not believe everything they read, so lets read and have a discussion instead of living in fear. I have read about half of them from both lists, I hope to read the rest soon.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Dreams...Crushed

It was a Woot Off the other day over at A Woot Off is when Woot! sells all the small remaining quantities of left over products at reduced prices for the limited quantities. On a Woot Off the product changes as soon as one product is sold out...instead of Woot's normal business model of a single product for 24 hours. So you must keep reloading constantly to try to get a great deal.

The crowning jewel of the woot off is the Bags of Crap (BOC). These are not the Flaming Bags of Crap that you might find on your front porch when someone rings your doorbell in the middle of the night. Woot Bags of Crap are random mystery items thrown together and sold for $1. You can get up to three bags of crap and pay one one shipping three bags of crap with shipping only costs you $8. What do you get for your hard earned money? You have to wait to find out when it arrives. You could get an MP3 player, you could get a product missing chords, instructions, batteries, etc... What you are really buying is hope. You hope you get something amazing like the 65" LCD television. You probably won't. Most likely you will get a box of random stuff that you really don't need or have a use for...crap. But there is always the hope that you will strike oil. This hope is well worth the $8.

Hetero-Life Pal CT has received a few bags of crap and gotten such things as a ipod speaker pillow, a case of 2008 Tuscany calendars (which I am enjoying at my desk right now), and a GI Joe bracelet...amongst other things. I had never actually seen a Bag of Crap pop up on Woot!. Demand is high, supplies low. They disappear within seconds. I had only heard the stories and I basked in their warm glow while telling myself "One day that will be me, opening my wonderful bag of crap!" Well this last Woot Off (Tues & Wed), I finally hit refresh and Bag of Crap appears on my screen. I squeal like a pre-pubescent little girl and hit "I Want One." Imagining the opening my BOC, I am almost quivering with hope, joy, nervousness, and an "I am King of the World" brashness. This glorious moment will be marked as a triumph in history...when good vanquished evil. I get the following message. "Server Too Busy." Hope dies a little. I hit reload. "Server Too Busy." Reload. Order page pops up, hope flares...Submit order quickly! "Server Too Busy." Hope failing...reload. "Server Too Busy." Reload. "Server Too Busy." Reload.....loading....waiting....loading....waiting. "Product Sold Out."

NOOOOOoooooooooo! Khan!

Monday, September 22, 2008

I Like Musicals (and I am not gay)

For some reason, I really like musicals. Broadway type shows or movies. I am not gay. I think I like them because I have no singing or dancing talent anyone who has seen me dance or sing karaoke can confirm. I just really like music in general, so while watching a play or movie I get that extra added connection with a musical.

I didn't realize how much I liked musicals until a couple years ago when I was entering information on my myspace site. When listing what movies I like, I realized that most if not all were musicals. Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Nightmare Before Christmas, Labyrinth, Amadeus, Death to Smoochy, Singin' in the Rain, etc... There is just something about them that gets stuck inside my head.

Music is very powerful to me so even just a really good soundtrack can boost a movie's appeal in my mind...but when it is a great movie/play with a great soundtrack it is hard to beat. Think about The Crow. It was a great movie and the soundtrack was awesome. Every time I hear any of those songs (like Burn by the Cure or Big Empty by STP), I am reminded of The Crow and can't imagine the movie without its soundtrack. I don't think it would have been nearly as moving and powerful. Music has the ability to make the good great and the mediocre almost good. Think Rocky Horror Picture Show...the movie is god awful but I have watched it many many times just because I enjoy the music so much. It is similar to how mini corn-dogs at Billy Joe's are able to make the mental scarring that Norbit inflicts worthwhile. Music just makes things better. Did you watch Beavis and Butthead for their stupid cartoon adventures? Hell no, you watched it for the rocking videos...and the commentary they provided to go along. That is why the Beavis and Butthead movie was just average. They took out the best part of the show and the movie soundtrack ended up being a parody of what it should have been. I give it a D+, if it had great music it could have been so much more.

The whole reason I bring this up is because I really want to go see Sweeney Todd at Stephen's Auditorium in Ames on Wednesday. I have actually been wanting to see the play for several years but it has never been close (actually I don't know if it has even toured before). Unfortunately, my financial situation at this time will probably forbid me from doing so. This makes me very sad. I am very much in the mood for some songs about revenge, killing, and cannibalism.

To sooth my empty aching soul, I have been enjoying Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. Dr Horrible is a mini-musical that Joss Whedon (creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer) made while the writer's strike was going on last winter. Three acts were released in July over the interwebicon for the world's amusement. It is incredible...Neil Patrick Harris (NPH) as an evil genius in love. Check out the trailer...although it is not nearly as good as the blog itself. Unfortunately, the actual episodes are no longer on the website but can be downloaded from Itunes (a DVD is supposedly coming soon). There are snippets on youtube and other places but I highly recommend finding the whole thing sometime.

Monday, September 15, 2008

I Have Achieved Cartoon Idiocy

Last week I did something that I always thought was not actually possible...just one of those stupid things that happens in cartoons. You know the scene where Daffy or Tom from Tom and Jerry steps on a rake and it smacks them in the face? I remember thinking as a kid that it was so dumb and cliche because who is stupid enough to step on a rake? Well folks, turns out that I am that stupid. I was cleaning out a section of my garage, turned around and the edge of the my foot hit the rake and BAM! Right in the eye. I expected to see stars or little birds flying around my head. I didn't but it was hard enough that I felt a little faint and was sore for days. Luckily it didn't give me a black eye or I would have had to use the excuse that I "ran into a door" when I was with the GF-Unit.

Anyhow, I just want to say that Sylvester, Wile E Coyote, Tom the Cat, Sideshow Bob, and all the rest of the lovable cartoon bad guys that I feel your pain with the rakes. And yes it really does hurt! No longer will I live in ignorance and laugh when a cartoon character is smacked in the face with a gardening tool. We must stop cartoon violence now! It is not funny people!

Plans for this week:

  1. Strap some rockets to my roller skates
  2. Fire myself out of a cannon
  3. Stick my fingers in the barrel of a shotgun
  4. Try to run through a tunnel painted onto a cliff
  5. Get a giant U shaped magnet


Michael - Super Genius

I think I should have taken that left turn at Albuquerque.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Yes, I'm Lazy

Yes, I have been extremely lazy lately and have not really felt like posting. I have been going through a patch of insomnia so everything is a little hazy around the edges as it is, so going off on some crazy rant would probably be even more worthless and sucky than normal.

Maybe soon though.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Ticket Prices - You Suck!

So they recently announced that Metallica is going to be playing Des Moines. I like Metallica (used to love Metallica but that was before they started writing crappy music) and have seen them many times in concerts. Even though I don't necessarily like their newer music (have you actually listened to St Anger? It is horrible), their concerts were always killer. Where else can you hear a few thousand people chanting "Die, Die, Die"...I'm sure there are other places to hear that but I doubt I would feel safe. Note it's not as cool as a Marilyn Manson concert where a few thousand are chanting "We hate love, we love hate" but still "Die, die, die" is spine tingling.

I was excited about the news, it has been several years since I last saw Metallica in concert...that excitement died when ticket prices where announced. $56 for reserved seating, $76 for general admission. WTF? $20 more for me to stand? I like standing and think it offers the best concert experience but since when can they charge 20 bucks more? Also, I don't mind paying money for a good show, I am not cheap but really is Metallica at the $75 and $95 level of entertainment (after tax and fees)? To someone like me...No, they are not worth it. Not when their concerts have become less about the music and more about spectacle over the years. Remember seeing Metallica just stand up their and fucking rock? But then there was the tour with the collapsing stage and the fake fire and "let's pretend our amps don't work" bullshit. That was all crap to me. I don't need it and in fact it was distracting. I want them to stand up there and just play music that rips the ass out of you. I don't think they can do it least not well enough for me to pay $75 - to be forced to sit in a seat. Sorry Metallica...just one more thing about you that pisses me off.

Ok, what the fuck is up with ticket fees? Have you noticed? Tickets fees (the fees charged by the ticket company ontop of the ticket price) are out of control. Fees for 1 Metallica ticket are $14...remember back in the early 1990s when Pearl Jam had a big fight with Ticket Master over these type of fees? Back then fees were between $3-$5. It is bullshit. What is my $14 paying for? Okay, $1 of that is listed as a facility fee. WTF? Facility Fee? I am buying a ticket to a show at your facility...why doesn't my ticket price cover this fee? It is like ordering a hamburger from McDonalds and having them charge you an extra dollar because you used their restaurant. What a load of shit. The other $13 is listed as a "Convenience Fee." Convenient for whom? Defintiely not me. $13 - if it was a convenience fee, it makes it sound like you are doing something that causes them extra work but is more convenient for you - so you should be able to get out of it right? Nope. If you order on-line, at a ticket master location, or even at the venue box office you are still charged this convenience fee (with the exception of the Val Air box office - you guys rock!). I understand Ticket Master needs to cover their costs and make a little money - I am fine with paying some sort of fee...but $13 seems exhorbanant. Plus calling it a convenience fees is just like rubbing salt in the wound. You know they are laughing everyday about this. But it is not just Ticketmaster - Dahl's Tickets, IowaTix, etc... has now gotten into the game prices may very slightly but still they are all gouging you. IowaTix is the best, but they are going downhill. They used to be a reasonable $3 when they first started operating, now they seem to be averaging in the $8-$9 range.

I don't know, maybe I am just getting older and complaining about how things used to cost a nickel when I was a kid, but ticket prices and fees seem to have far surpassed normal inflation in the past ten years.