Friday, December 31, 2010

Ending 2010 with a bang, everyone.

And by that, I mean... I'm doing nothing except plowing through Breaking Bad season 2. I think I'm OK with that... on one hand, I could be doing something interesting, considering that this is one of those days where a lot of people tend to hang out and what not. On the other hand... I don't really care for the new year that much anyway, and the show is absolutely excellent. I would wholeheartedly recommend it... unless you have a low tolerance for extremely dark television. Then I would not recommend it.

*shrug*

I'm glad the year is over, though. It really hasn't been my best.

I think the main problem is that I've become way too complacent about a lot of things, which has affected my overall self-worth probably more than enough. And then of course, I then tend to not break out of that sense of complacency because I typically don't feel too high about myself.

I'm hoping this will change somewhat soon. I... well, I don't want to say that I have a couple of New Year's Resolutions, because from years of experiences I've learned that they're pretty much wishful things you tell yourself you'll do that you never ever end up doing. But I have a plan for the new year, and will just hope that my hesitance to call them resolutions will allow them to actually come to fruition.

Mainly, it all just boils down to the idea that I want to feel better about myself. But of the things to accomplish for next year, I would like to hopefully find a reasonable source of income that doesn't make me hate myself, and I would like to do some volunteer work when the first goal eventually fizzles out (positive thinking is great, I know). Also I would like to write more. These are all relatively attainable goals, I would think. I just have to... you know, *do* them.

In other news... I saw Black Swan the other day. I'm going to go ahead and call it my favorite of the year so far.

I think I loved it more because the score and the camerawork were top notch, but it was suitably nuts. I don't know... after reflection, there were certain aspects of the film that seemed a little trite, but I bought into them anyway, just because of how crazy/campy it was.

I still haven't seen a lot of the Oscar contenders yet, but hopefully will see True Grit this weekend, and then The King's Speech and The Fighter to follow from there. But if I had to rank the actual contenders this year that I've seen, it'd go like this:

1) Black Swan
2) The Social Network
3) Toy Story 3
4) Shutter Island
5) Winter's Bone
6) Inception
7) 127 Hours
8) The Town
9) The Kids Are All Right

The last two I didn't care for at all... I'd perhaps get into it, but... the last episode is beckoning me. So let's go for that.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

I'm pretty excited about tonight's Vikings game, if you'll forgive me for writing about sports.

1) Because it's been the most crazy Vikings season ever... and thus, the most fun in a way. Too bad they aren't in the playoff hunt, cause it would be sort of fun seeing how many heads would burst over how our schedule/playing locations have been f-ed around with... plus to see how many people would talk themselves into seeing the Vikes beat a Super Bowl contender with our 3rd string QB...

2) Because I need DeSean Jackson to get about 26 yards catching tonight with no fumbles in order for me to win the Yahoo fantasy league I signed up for.

Now, I'm not really a fantasy guy... my participation in it stems mostly from the fact that I got bored one day in late August, and that I've had a couple of minutes to spare a week to see what was up with the team. But I sort of have a fondness for this team...

My team name is "Soup'R Crackers" (probably because I was watching Party Down at the time I named the team), and I pretty much have no standout guys. My main RB Frank Gore went down to an injury a few weeks ago, and I subsequently lost 3 consecutive weeks. Another RB, Ahmad Bradshaw, started off strong but then started to fumble a lot, and now it's a crapshoot on whether or not he'll actually get enough carries to do much in a given week (and I have to start him nonetheless). My QB was Brett Favre before I realized he sucked, then I switched over to Denver's Kyle Orton... who has pretty much been benched for Tim Tebow. Now I'm starting Josh Freeman, a nobody for Tampa Bay that has somehow done really well.

Also, it's been the most streaky team I could imagine. I started out the season with a loss... but then won three straight, going to 3-1. I then lost three straight, going to 3-4, before winning 4 straight to make it 7-4. I then lost three straight going to 7-7... and yet I somehow still made it into the playoffs. (Not that it's similar at all, since mine is a ten team league and I somehow had the 4th best record... but for comparison, there's a huge stink about how a sub .500 team is going to make the playoffs in the NFC West, and everyone's pretty much clamoring for the NFL to revise the rules to make sure nothing like this happens again) I went into last week's game playing the number one team... expecting to get killed, only to have had pulled off a complete blowout when the first place team had each of their players turn in poor performances.

And now I'm playing against the 2nd ranked team (who is actually ranked first in points, so... really they're the best team)... and I somehow managed to have a 14 point lead going into Monday. Unfortunately, they had Drew Brees for the Saints and Michael Turner for the Falcons still to play later tonight... which meant that in all likelihood, they'd put up massive numbers and I would need Jackson to put up 200 yards and 3 touchdowns or something like that. BUT THEN... Brees and Turner somehow both stunk enough. And now I have a chance to win.

Of course, I'm liking my chances... since the Vikings suck against the pass and there's a good chance Jackson will get a couple of looks. But of course, what will happen is that he'll somehow get completely shut out, or he'll get a 24 yard reception to start the game... only to come up injured on the play, just making me fall short of beating them.

Essentially, I'm expecting the worst. But I really want to win. One, because obviously who wouldn't, and two, I'd rather win it all after having a lackluster season all year long only to somehow do enough to eke it out every game... rather than, you know, having an actually good team and winning by dominance.

Friday, December 24, 2010

I feel like an old person.

It's Christmas Eve, as you might guess. Everyone is pretty much just winding down their nights at the moment, so I've been sitting around on the internet... waiting for my nephews to go to bed so I can Santa Claus the living room. Pretty sure they're out by now, but I'm too lazy to actually get up at the moment.

Things were kind of stressful around here the past week or so--someone caught the flu at some point, which I then inevitably caught. I'm almost fine now, thank you very much, but it rendered pretty much both Sara and I out of it on what was our anniversary. So... that sucked.

Also had to brave the traffic and the crowds yesterday in Christmas shopping. Not that I would be stupid enough to not get my Christmas shopping by this time (of course, I'm not saying that if you do wait till the last minute that you are stupid... actually, yes I am. You're stupid. The traffic is terrible and there's too many people and you should have figured out how to avoid it by now), but there was a bit of a snafu with my brother's present. My sister ordered this really big present with my mother's credit card, and I got to wrap it yesterday. It was a bunch of DVDs--a 5-pack, as it was advertised--but they were all copies of the same DVD. Apparently she didn't read the product info, where it said nothing to the sort that they were 5 separate DVDs included. Just the one...

I don't know where I was going with this...

*shrugs* We do our little Christmas gift exchanging Christmas Eve, by the way. We have lasagna for dinner (which I've made for the past eons...), and then open stuff afterwards--after I organize the presents by recipient so the order in which they open it isn't all over the place. I think one year when I was super hardcore about it, I had every present for every person assigned to a number, so I could then have everyone open each present in an exact order (so... you know, you don't open the Xbox 360 before the pair of socks or whatever). I don't know why I usually take it so seriously... I just do. I would probably buy all the presents if I could as well...

I did get my fair share of gifts for others, though. Actually it sort of seemed like it was the first time the amount I spent on others matched what I got back in return. Which is totally cool and all... I mean, parents probably spends thousands on their kids and what not and are just grateful when they get a nice sweater or something. But... I don't know... that must mean I'm getting old.

Obviously.

I was really into the Christmas season as a kid... and still am. But I guess it's just a little disappointing that the excitement keeps declining. I don't know. I guess I try to make the whole season a little more enjoyable for everyone, but I guess I feel as if that isn't being reciprocated wholly by everyone else. Which is OK. Not really anyone's fault... I just expect the same enthusiasm and thought from everyone that I do from myself... and I take it too damn seriously anyway.

This might all sound incredibly vague. I don't know. It's late. I had a good day. I have to wake up early tomorrow.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

I watched Scott Pilgrim for the second time today... count me as someone who's in favor of it.

I thought it had a couple of flaws that I can see people not being able to get over... some of the jokes tried way too hard (i.e. Vegan police), and the heavy reliance on referencing video games--while didn't bother me-- it sure isn't going to change the face of moviemaking (at least that's what it seems like some people assume...). But... I mean, it features Michael Cera using random superpowers fighting dudes who come out of nowhere and sometimes have a choreographed song and dance number for the occasion. So I can't not enjoy it.

The reason I'm taking time to mention this was that I found Michael Cera surprisingly tolerable in this.

I probably got sick of him around the same time everyone else did, which must have been around... hmm, apparently he played a young Sam Rockwell in Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind--that's pretty cool... I don't know, 2008 or so. Which I think might have been a reason why this bombed at the box office--cause if you're basing a movie off of name recognition alone, he's going to create quite a tough mountain to climb.

But here he was... not annoying. I mean, he's still playing a variation of himself essentially, but it's one we haven't seen before--and it's probably closest to his actual personality anyway. He's still kind of a dork, but... people seem to think he's cool to be around. He's most likely not a virgin (I mean, he has had multiple girlfriends... don't think he's ever started with more than 0). Most of the conversations he has are not completely overwrought in awkwardness. This is a good thing.

Compare it to something like Youth In Revolt (which wasn't very good...), where he's playing two characters--one of which is just Michael Cera, the other the COMPLETE OPPOSITE OF ALL OF HIS CHARACTERS EVER... and it just rang as a little bit forced to me. He couldn't pull off the suave ladies' man because he isn't that type of guy (or at least his onscreen persona isn't that type... I'm sure in real life he has absolutely no problems), and in the end the same old Michael Cera character wins out anyway.

I don't know. I'm always going to be more of a fan of guys like Bill Murray who essentially play variations of himself rather than the Sean Penns who will play everything just to prove they can pull it off. Not that I'm equating Mr. Cera with anyone, but... I know everyone's sick of his persona, and I can't say that this movie changed my overall apathy for his film career, but he should stick to what he knows, instead of trying to go against type just to stave off critics.

Just maybe don't always take the role where you're the most awkward person on the planet.

Friday, December 17, 2010

An afternoon listening to KOOL 108 while sitting in traffic on 94...

... which is a pain, by the way. I know it's the holiday season so people are going out shopping... and I know it just snowed a ridiculous amount, but it feels as if it's twice as slow as it should be taking into account those things.

Anyway, most of that was spent listening to KOOL 108, because they had Christmas music on... and I am a Christmas kind of person. They're decent for a nonstop holiday music station, but I have a few complaints, and I am going to list them right here... because obviously station heads check random corners of the internet on suggestions how to improve their Christmas playlist:

-Please stop playing whatever the hell the Christmas song is called by The Eagles. I know that by going to all Christmas music, you have to account for the fact that your listeners expect your playlist to be 25% Eagles... but haven't they released another Christmas song or two?

(Apparently not. I typed in "Eagles Christmas" into Google... the top ten results for videos are the same song... the other two aren't actually Eagles related... also I'm going to post the videos, because in order to get my suffering, you might need to listen to this song about 12 times in a row...)



-Also, less Bruce Springsteen's version of Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town. I heard it three times in the span of two hours. THERE ARE OTHER CHRISTMAS SONGS.

(This video somehow manages to be more annoying than the one I've heard millions of times.)



-No Carpenters. For the love of God.

-This song:



Apparently it just won "most annoying Christmas song" according to a poll in Bulgaria. You'd think radio stations would want to appease their Bulgarian demographic.

-The Vince Guaraldi stuff from A Charlie Brown Christmas is good... but if you're insisting on putting certain songs on constant repeat, throw in a little of this. Also, I have heard You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch exactly once over the course of a month.

Also... anything from the Phil Spector Christmas album needs to be on constant repeat. Actually, just play this song:



Honestly, you could play that song maybe once every 20 minutes and I wouldn't tire of it.

Hell, here's more from Phil Spector. Just ignore that he's a crazy murderer and try to enjoy the warm Christmas-y feelings you get from these:








Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Today has been a good day. I got most of my Christmas related stuff done--need to wrap a couple of presents and buy a few things, but then I'm going to be in the clear. Not that this is the reason that my day has been good--I was just writing. I don't know...

Been listening to a lot of Motown, and I'm just going to post some YouTube clips here and expect you to watch them all, because it's obviously some quality stuff:













Sunday, December 12, 2010

I must be late to the party, but...

I was out Christmas shopping today, and I saw this:



This is a gift card for all the Beatles albums, all the songs, from the Apple iTunes store.

Now, I suppose I don't really know how the world works, and I suppose I could see someone buying this as a gift for someone they don't actually know how to shop for... but isn't this kind of pointless?

Surely pretty much everyone out there has at least a couple Beatles album and could easily procure the rest for cheaper if they wanted to? Or at the very least, people have the greatest hits album and really won't need to have "Beatles For Sale" taking up hard drive space. PLUS... the CDs are probably much cheaper if you can find them in the right places...

So of course people are buying s***loads of this.

I really don't understand anything anymore.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Monkeees were f*****' great

Way back when I was in college, and taking random courses because I didn't know what else to take, I took a history of rock & roll class. The Monkees were a frequent target for mimicry while the teacher raved on and on about bands like Led Zeppelin... who, you know... "rocked" and stuff.

I would probably take the Monkees over Led Zeppelin any day.

Which would result in a lot of people deciding to never befriend me, but whatever.

The reason I'm writing this is because Daydream Believer came up on a playlist I'm listening to. And... I mean, I know that the band was essentially a front to cash in on the popularity of the Beatles, and that when any music label does this nowadays, I hate it completely. But... it's so happy. And catchy. And no one could possibly ever hate it. Well, maybe some, but they've already decided against life, so screw them.

I'm going to counterbalance with a song by Led Zeppelin that I don't really like, so you will be inclined to side with my line of thinking (although I think this is actually a popular song, so there's no way this won't backfire):



Reaction: *bliss*



Reaction: *shrugs*

Sunday, November 28, 2010



It's weird. Usually when a celebrity dies, I get pretty annoyed, because there's always a huge wave of adoration and support that comes off as a little bit forced and misleading of people's actual opinion of them. I know that's what death does to folks, but at the same time... I mean, there was a huge outwave of support for Michael Jackson, and a lot of people pretty much assumed that before his death he was a pedophile.

All that said... I get kind of sad when there's a death of a celebrity that I actually like.

And all the praise that everyone is giving to Mr. Neilsen is both warranted and honest, because the man was pretty much awesome.

By no means am I the least hypocritical person in the world.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I haven't written here in about half a month... I CAN EXPLAIN!!!

The gist is this: apparently November is National Novel Writing Month. And Sara decided to participate in it and encouraged me to do so. And so, knowing that two people working towards something makes it easier to actually get things done, I went along with it, and I've been doing that all month.

I'm way behind and only have about 11,000 words, but oh well. I'm taking it slow and I'll just continue on after the month.

So the Vikings lost again today.

I kind of want the Vikings to keep losing, just so we can get rid of Brad Childress and begin anew right away (I would say that hopefully we'd get rid of Favre too, but... he will never go away. NEVER EVER), but the problem with that is we face the Packers next week. And I could never ever cheer against the Vikings and for the Packers, so...

SCREW IT, I'M FOCUSING ON THE TIMBERWOLVES NOW.

Of course, the Timberwolves also suck... but they suck in a different way, you see. Cheering for them isn't laced with bitterness at the fact that a Super Bowl contender has fizzled out utterly and completely. Instead, cheering for the Wolves is just laced with constant disappointment... and I can handle that!

See, the thing is this: the Twins have been great for the past decade or so, but the season in which I watched them play the most was the 1999 season. Now that might have been because I had more time on my hands and all, but even though the Twins kept losing that year, it was also fun because they had some talent that had just come up that year. Torii Hunter, Jacque Jones, Corey Koskie, Doug Mientkiewicz, so on and so on. I mean, they weren't great, but there was a bit of hope nonetheless.

I'm not saying that I'm expecting to make the Western conference championship in 3 years, and I'm not exactly sure that this recipe they have is actually going to work out. But still: I ended up watching the game against the Lakers and the game against the Knicks.

Versus the Lakers, we somehow kept it close the entire game against not only the champs, but against a team that hadn't lost yet. And actually, they would have won the game were it not for the hundred or so turnovers that they gave up.

Against the Knicks... of course Kevin Love had a ridiculous game, but the team was down by 20 at some point in the 3rd quarter, and somehow clawed back to a pretty definitive victory... this after a week in which we did nothing but get blown out. I don't know. I was impressed with that.

I don't know why I've decided I'm wasting too much time obsessing over the losing Vikings only to decide that I should instead concentrate on a team that's probably going to lose 60 games. But the thing is, the Wolves at least have the ability to pleasantly surprise, so anything better than finishing last in the conference would be pretty awesome, even though I'm definitely not counting on it. The Vikings.... even if they win the next seven games, they would still finish slightly below expectations.

I guess I just need a different kind of ineptitude at the moment.

Thursday, October 28, 2010



I like some Belle & Sebastian every once in a while. Not necessarily a huge fan, and if I'm going to turn on something by them nine times out of ten it's something from If You're Feeling Sinister. And most of their latest stuff hasn't done much for me, but there's always this one song that if I were to look at it discerningly, I would be fairly dismissive... but yet I can't help myself. This is one of those songs:



Kind of awesome, right? I mean, if your mom's favorite band wrote this song, you'd hate it and all... but you'd be wrong and eventually you'd realize that.

Anyway. Apparently the band's put out a new album (it's called "Write About Love".... which is a stupid title. So much that I'm not going to explain how stupid it is but just assume that you are in complete agreement with me), which I didn't really have any anticipation for (probably because of the title), but then I heard the song in the first video above on The Current. And then I thought, "hey, this isn't bad," which transformed about 4 minutes into the song to "hey, this is pretty good!" And then I thought about looking it up on YouTube and here we are.

By the way, I've had a lot of good luck with The Current as of late. As in, when I've listened to them, they haven't been playing soft indie folk all the f'n time, which constitutes as a victory, I suppose. And I didn't hear a single Mumford & Sons song.

I don't know if you guys have heard of the band, but believe me, the fact that I didn't hear them qualifies as a miracle. Seriously, I may have read about the band once or twice on a couple of occasions browsing various sites or whatever, but The Current hypes them as if it's 1964 and the Beatles just arrived in the US or something (it might have been 1963 in which the Beatles came across the sea, but I can't be bothered to look).

I should probably get to sleep, since I need to wake up at 8... and I haven't been sleeping as well as of late... and I'm sick....

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I was at the Mall of America the other day, killing time one way or another, when I saw a T-shirt. It was a Vikings shirt, one right off the heels of Randy Moss getting traded back to the team and designed in the hopes of being those witty t-shirts with funny sayings and crap. It went something like this:

"You MOSS
be kidding me!
4 + 84 is
simply FAVRELOUS!!"

Few things:

1) I would like to think this is the worst t-shirt ever made.
2) In case you didn't get it, 4 and 84 are the numbers of Brett Favre and Randy Moss. Who play on the same team.
3) I would like to think that this was the result of some bigwig thinking that this was the funniest thing he's ever thought of, and despite the protests of everyone else, decided that this t-shirt would sell like f'n hotcakes. And thus, they proudly display it in their window, knowing that every day a mad rush would result from the knowledge that indeed, this store carries the funniest t-shirt of all time.
4) I don't know how many people have heard this, but when a sporting event occurs (say... the Super Bowl) and a team wins, they generally conveniently have t-shirts that proudly display that they are indeed the Super Bowl champions. Of course, they don't just print these as soon as the clock runs down, so that means they generally have to create "Super Bowl champions" t-shirts for each team. Anyway, the winning team usually has their championship t-shirt go on sale the next day, while the losing team... they usually have their shirts sent to third world countries since they can't really sell them off in America (although I'm pretty sure every irony-laden youngin' would have at least one in their closet, but that somehow remains an untapped market for sports memorabilia).

The reason I bring this all up is that Favre has a good chance of getting himself killed this week. He most likely has about 16 injuries at this point, including a noticeable limp, and pretty much the defense can smell it and will pretty much stop at nothing to make sure Brett Favre dies on field.

Which would make all these t-shirts irrelevant. And after all these Mall of America stores have sold exactly zero copies of the shirt, they too will ship the excess copies all off to Africa, where some kids in Malawi who grew up thinking the Bears beat the Colts in Super Bowl XLI will also think that 4 + 84 equals favrelous. (I guess it really isn't the same as sending off the Super Bowl loser shirts, since technically 4 + 84 has equaled favrelous about 12 times for 166 yards, but still).

Believe me, this would be a good thing (you know, for reasons other than my hypothetical situation involving kids in Malawi coming in possession of clothing). Brett Favre needs to go down. Let's list the reasons:

1) I hate Brett Favre.
2) He's been pretty abysmal this year.
3) I hate Brett Favre. Mainly, this is the reason. I didn't like him last year when he was doing great, and I sure as hell don't care for him now. And all my dream scenarios in which the Vikings won the Super Bowl involved Brett Favre going down and Tarvaris Jackson leading us to a come from behind victory. Not that I ever really expected this to happen, since Favre would probably try to play after amputating a leg... plus Jackson isn't really a good QB. But it was a nice thought.

But if there was ever a time where Favre would be yanked for Jackson, it would be this Sunday. He might just play terribly... throwing 3 picks in 10 throws, and Childress might decide that the injuries are bothering Favre to the point where taking him out of the game presents the team with their best chance to win. And then Jackson would come in. Hopefully for the rest of the season. And win or lose, it would be glorious.

Cause it would mean that the storied career of Brett Favre ended with him bruised, broken, in the center of a sexting scandal, and with him being bench in favor of TARVARIS F'N JACKSON. Seriously. For anyone who can't stand #4, this has to be the best way to go out.

(Although now that I think about it, the fact that the game takes place on Halloween makes me think Favre will make it through the entire game. Cause Brett Favre is pretty much a zombie. And it takes a whole lot to take down a zombie.)

Anyway: to recap. I hate a stupid shirt. A Vikings player needs to be sacrificed for the greater good (in order to help the team, placate my hopes and dreams, & make sure no one is spending money on that t-shirt). That player needs to be Favre.

This post is going to look super depressing when Favre finishes the season starting every game and helping the Vikings achieve a 6-10 record.
It's about 3 AM.

I have pretty much been playing games with my brothers all night, which has been enjoyable. They got the new wrestling game yesterday when I took them to Gamestop, and from what I've played it's actually kind of fun.

I mean, I suck at it. My brothers are way better. Except that I have developed one little expertise that gives me a shot in the dark at winning, and that is kicking out of pin attempts.

The way pins work in this game is that when you are covered for a pin, you have until 3 to kick out. So there's this meter that you have to stop inside the precise "kick out" area in order to get out of the pin attempt. Generally you have about three attempts to stop the meter before you lose. Also, once you take more damage, the meter becomes faster and the area that allows you to kick out shrinks. So, you know... you still have to be decent to win.

And I'm not. So essentially I have become the master at delaying the inevitable, and instead I absorb more punishment in the small hopes that I will either make a comeback or make a quick pin that catches my brothers off guard (which might have occurred 10% of the matches I played tonight), but HEY. At least it's something.

Anyway, I might still be playing the game were it not for the fact that I had a 30 minute match with my littlest brother, in which I was pretty much kicking out of everything. It was quite the epic, believe me. Realistically, I didn't really have a shot at winning it, but I kept slowly adding more damage to my brother in the hopes that I might get lucky. Aiding me was some guy who randomly interfered in the match and distracted the referee whenever my brother went for a pin for a good 5 minutes... to which my brother responded by using leverage on the ropes to give the pins an unfair advantage (cause... you know, what the hell).

So. Just as I was really starting to build up momentum, just as I was getting ready to hit my brother with some powerful moves and hopefully steal the victory... he knocks me down and pins me for the 1-2-3.

Well crap.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Guess who's sick.

I'll give you three guesses.


...


It's me.

I'm sorry I spoiled it for you.

So generally I don't feel great. And I'm trying to get ahold of Sara because I figure she'd be willing to commiserate with me and all, but I can't. Either because she's sleeping or because for some reason my phone calls sometimes don't reach her, with this instance being one of those times.

Also, I have to drive my brothers out to Gamestop soon because there's a midnight release for a game that they'd like to play. Not that I would normally mind this, but I'm feeling not so great... and the weather is supposed to suck tomorrow, so I can't bring them tomorrow like most people would probably do. Also, they never really did midnight releases when *I* was a kid. What the f, world.

I'm going to call Sara again. Maybe this time I'll get through.

...

Oh. As it turns out she wasn't answering her phone because she was driving. And I look like an annoying twat for calling multiple times.

Oops.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

I f***** hate sports

1) The worst part of this game is that we lost by 4 points. Because it was on 3rd down that the Packer receiver bobbled the ball after landing inbounds for a TD, which meant that the Packers would have had to settle for 3 instead of 7. THEN, we get jobbed out of a Shaincoe TD (which was a make up call for a bad personal foul penalty on the Packers, but even if you're going to make f'n make up calls that one should have made up for the Packer "TD" anyways) and lose out on another 4 points. F***** referees...

2) The second that Packers receiver was ruled in for a TD, I was screaming for a challenge just because it looked like there was a chance he landed out of bounds (and if there's any chance it might be overruled when it means 3 points instead of 7, you f***** challenge it). But of course Childress wastes his time thinking about how he's going to piss people off by not going for a score at the end of the first half to actually challenge the damn play. FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

3) Seriously, I hope pretty much every single ladyfriend Favre has had in the past comes out of the woodwork this week. And that they reveal he's been juicing for years and years. And that he owns a cockfighting league. And his ankle breaks in two.


Maybe the Timberwolves will win a few games this year...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I've been having a lot of dreams recently about going back to school.

I'm not someone who really puts a lot of stock into the interpretation of dreams (since the large majority of my dreams are variants of me trying to buy some thing either really hard to find or something I've been wanting for a while, only to be interrupted by a meteor landing), but it's been kind of weird, because I usually can't recall what I dream about and this has happened at least a few times this week.

But I am kind of worried that--out of all the various types of dreams I'm having--this is one that is actually trying to tell me something.

It's not that I abhor school and all that it stands for... I just kind of got tired of the constant BS that surrounds it, and wanted to move on with life. And I've always assumed that a return to school would be sort of a last resort option, in the instance that I've failed in every single area and have nothing to turn towards.

Which--it's getting kind of close to that point, honestly.

I always thought the idea of college was so extremely daunting, that I'd have to decide on an entire future by the time I turned junior at a point where I had really no particular interests at all. Fast forward a few years, and that turned out very poorly, and I'm still stuck trying to figure out everything. So I guess school would be an option, but it didn't really work the last time in terms of laying out any sort of future...

I think the problem is that I just need to commit to something, even if it's not likely I'll succeed. Cause then everything would then be based on what I'm aiming towards. There would be a focus. Then if I wanted to head back to school, it would be because I know it would be beneficial, instead of seeking it out just because I don't know what the hell I'm doing.

I don't know why I'm writing about this. Something else entirely--watched the 30 Rock live episode tonight. Don't really understand why it had to have a live episode since it seems to be in direct opposition of the main ethos of the show (laugh tracks=less time for jokes), but it sort of worked if you saw it mainly as an episode of Saturday Night Live in sitcom form (which really wasn't hard to do since four former cast members appeared, plus Alec Baldwin... who might as well be one... also Julia Louis-Dreyfus was on the episode, and now I think about it was an SNL member *way* back in the day.... so, make that 5 or 6). I also haven't watched the 4th season of the show, so I felt a little bit out of the loop (who the f was the guy from Canada), but whatever.

I'm tired, and this site doesn't seem to be working completely, so I'm not sure this will go through...

Monday, October 11, 2010

Quick things about the Vikings game:

1) I love Randy Moss, so that touchdown to him was pretty much a thing of beauty to me. In fact, any time they threw it deep to him was just thrilling as hell, even though he had little chance on most of the passes... it's just nice to be reminded of how exciting he was way back in the day.
2) I hope the result of this whole sexting controversy is either the NFL dishes out a 12 game inappropriate conduct suspension, or he retires in order to concentrate on fixing his marriage or something. Cause Favre just pisses the s*** out of me.

I keep wanting to write about Sufjan Stevens' new album, but the problem is that I really can't help but only listen to the title track, which is suitably epic and crazy and exactly what I was hoping for when he released "You Are The Blood" for that charity release way back in the day.

Although Impossible Soul has autotune. That has that going for it.

And I think one song has lyrics about ghost-fingering, which is weird if I'm not mishearing (and of course I'm not.)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I wish I could watch this series...

I could really go for some of the self-loathing that everyone else is having.

---

The worst part is that since the Twins' payroll is sky high, you can't rely on the old "well, the big bad Yankees are just beating up on the little guys." Sure, the Yankees are pretty much single-handedly killing my enthusiasm for the sport, but they can't be used as scapegoats. The Twins are just weak-willed. The articles I've read and the quotes I've seen make me believe they think they've got no chance now, and that the Yankees are smelling blood...

...

So the Vikings got Randy Moss back...

Heck yeah.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Someone throw me a bone, please.

1) I had an interview on Friday. I wasn't trying to be super nervous about it, because that generally tends to hurt me in the actual interview, so I tried to downplay my chances and assume that I have nothing to lose and just be relaxed and all that.

Well, that all went sort of kaput. My car's battery died about an hour before my interview.

2) When I called the person I was interviewing with to tell her of my predicament, I told her I would call when I thought I'd be able to come in. So I finally got the car situation fixed, and told her that I'd be there in so-and-so minutes. Only problem is, the place was downtown somewhere, and the directions I got weren't the greatest. So I ended up driving around looking for this building until about a minute after I said I'd be there, when I gave up and asked for better directions. So not only was I late for the originally scheduled interview, but I was late for the rescheduled one as well. (Granted, this wasn't completely my fault, but you know.)

3) I bombed the interview, as I am prone to do.

I use a lot of filler words. It's a bad habit. I actively tried to avoid using them for this interview, and yet I still used them all the time. That probably colored my perception of the interview. Also, I'm always blindsided by one question where it's "give me an example of ________" and the blank is filled by something I haven't ever prepared for, and then on the spot give the worst possible example I could give.

4) My boss asked me if I could take on a few more hours the next week, since we're going to be shorthanded. I usually only want to work about 20, since it's a bit of a drive and I hate it there anyway, but I'm a nice person and I can't say no. Besides, I figure he's only going to schedule me for 25 hours or so. 25-28, something in that range.

Of course that's not what he does. He schedules me for 36 hours.

He has a very liberal definition of the word "few".

5) I just discovered that the Twins' first four games in the ALDS coincide with days and times in which I work, and that the games probably won't be shown on local TV. Which means I won't be able to have it on at work... and I'll just miss the entire series (most likely) all together.

....

....

FUDGE.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

HEY, WHAT'S UP:

Not much, really.

HOW'S IT GOING:

It's going OK. Things get a little depressing now and then, but I'm trying to deal with it... or ignore it, or whatever.

WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN UP TO:

Not a whole lot, really. I went to the Como Zoo recently... that was fun. I really don't have much to say about it, other than September seems like an absolutely amazing time to go to the zoo, since the exhibits were still out, most everyone was still in school and field trips wouldn't be made so early on in the year.

I've also been watching a lot of television, which has given me a way to not actually do anything with my time, which has been exciting. Actually, I guess I can somewhat attribute it to the fact that I have this idea for a television show that's been racking around in my brain for a little bit (I think it's actually an old idea of mine, but revamped a little bit), except that I really don't have a grasp on what makes quality television quality... so I've been STUDYING! There, that makes it sound a lot better.

So, let's see... past few months I've been watching (watching meaning at least a couple episodes)... Freaks & Geeks, Party Down, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Community, Futurama, 30 Rock, Arrested Development, Better Off Ted, Louie, Mystery Science Theater, Stella, Eastbound & Down... other stuff that I'm probably forgetting. I would write about these shows in a more detailed recapesque form, but... my general confidence in anything I do right now is kind of nearing an all time low, so I feel like I wouldn't do most of these shows justice.

I also saw the first episode of Boardwalk Empire that aired the other day, which was alright... kinda just watching it now simply because the cast is pretty much stellar. The fact that I can watch it as it airs however is a nice perk at living at home. Staying in a room with HBO AND a DVR. So, you know... aside from feeling pretty much like a failure for failing to make it out on my own and resorting to moving back, it's been pretty beneficial to me.

COOL.

Indeed it is.

GOT ANYTHING ELSE TO SHARE WITH US:

Yes! Yes I do! I would like to announce my general love for this really cool site called FeedFliks, which shows exactly what's coming out on Netflix's instant streaming thing in the near future. It's been pretty useful, cause it tells me that wouldn't you know it, 30 Rock season 4 will be streaming in just a few days, which means that there's no need to put it in the DVD queue! Awesome! It's not actually exciting but whatever!

It also has statistics for your Netflix usage, which is pretty stupid but kinda cool. For instance, I generally don't watch the DVDs I get fairly quickly, so the calculated amount I spend on each DVD I get (given that I spend $15 a month with my subscription) is about $7. But, if you factor in each item I watch on instant streaming, it comes down to about $0.33 per item watched! Sweet!

(Although technically that's probably not the actual worth I'm getting out of my subscription, since I've allowed my brother to use his PS3 to watch stuff on Netflix. Which he does fairly occasionally.)

(Also, the only problem I have with him using my Netflix subscription is that sometimes the stuff he watches appears on my "recently watched" category on the Netflix homepage. So for instance, I can see that he has recently watched The Love Guru... which means that I am pretty much failing as a brother. You usually don't like seeing reminders of cold hard facts like that.)

SO, HOW ABOUT THEM VIKINGS:

Yep. How about them.

....THEY PRETTY MUCH SUCK, DON'T THEY:

Indeed they do. I'm kind of expecting the Lions to beat us this week. It's actually pretty weird because after all the hype for us coming into the season, it's kind of all falling apart. Our run defense even hasn't looked all that decent, which has been our specialty for the past 4 or so years.

Also, Brett Favre is old. And yes, I am hoping that he uncerimoniously gets benched in favor of Tarvaris Jackson if things continue to go poorly. I would consider it a fitting end to perhaps my least favorite player of all time. Yes, I am a bad person.

BUT HEY! THE TWINS JUST MADE IT INTO THE PLAYOFFS!:

Heck yes they did! Might even stand to have the best record in baseball!

SO DOES THAT MEAN THAT WE MIGHT MAKE IT PAST THE YANKEES IN THE FIRST ROUND THIS YEAR:

Probably not.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

... blah blah blah...

I'm sick and I'm going to probably be up until at least 3 AM. That's the kind of intelligence I like to display.

...

The Vikings start their season tomorrow, and I for one am dreading it terribly.

I have absolutely no good feelings about this year... for a few reasons I'll explain now. First, the score tomorrow is going to be something like Saints 42, Vikings 27... something where we're technically within striking range, but New Orleans controls throughout and kicks the s*** out of our secondary.

Anyway, the reasons I'm not feeling this season:

1) Last few times we made the NFC championship, we went into the next year with heightened expectations... only to sorely disappoint. The only reason we made the playoffs in 1999 was because Jeff George had some strange magic in his arm (to the point where I was pissed off we didn't keep him the next year).
2) Favre is going to play all 16 games, cause he likes to seem tough and all, but he's going to be banged up like crazy. (Cause he's 80.) To the point where he's going to ostensibly retire in 2011 in order to heal all his injuries... before announcing he's coming back to play in 2012.
3) They are essentially going all in on this season, which worries me. I know they probably don't have a realistic chance past this year, but the idea that this is their only chance... well, it might work out, but it might just blow up completely in our faces. Something doesn't go right for the team and panic mode might set in. I don't know. I just don't feel good about it.

I haven't been up to anything else, by the way.

Just... breathing, mainly.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

August 22nd:

-I'm sitting here before I have to go to work and my girlfriend is playing Super Mario Galaxy (not the new one, mind you--the first one that she still has yet to complete), and I have really nothing better to do than write, so here we go.

I've been trying to find some sort of direction for perhaps the past few months (years, decades...) and been failing miserably at doing so. I have also been trying to find some reasonable source of income for the past few months, and failing at that as well. Any other possible ventures I may have undertaken over the course of the past few months=probably haven't turned out terribly well either.

I'm assuming it all boils down to a lack of drive and a lack of confidence. It'd be super great if I could find a way to change all that, but it's kind of hard to do that without something giving you a sense of hope or purpose or whatever. I'm trying to enjoy things regardless, but sometimes everything seems to be such a downer.

I think one of the bigger problems is that I haven't just quit my job yet, which--despite the fact that it is money no matter how little money it is-- contributes absolutely zero to my self worth and has made me pretty much complacent in trying to find any other source of income. Not that I'm expecting to find anything that will contribute anything to my self worth or my wallet, but still... I think a clean slate might be--maybe not essential, but perhaps a good way to refocus and start feeling decent again.

-I'm contemplating selling items I find around thrift stores and sales online as a way to make a little bit of a profit, but I have absolutely no idea where I would begin. I figure something terrible would happen--maybe I'd have nothing sell, or I'd sell something and they somehow get broken from point A to point B, so... yeah.

-I have no idea where Sara ran off to...

-I had an amazing sandwich today. Not that it's terribly important or anything, but you know. Just so you can be jealous. And actually, I had pretty much the exact same sandwich last night as well... I was going to buy some bread at the store last night when I saw that there was a buy one get one free coupon for the bread I was going to get. It was a small victory for me.

And now I'm off to work... which is unfortunate because it means I will miss BRETT FAVRE'S FIRST PRESEASON GAME IN OVER A YEAR!

Or it means I'll miss the first place Twins increase their division lead by one. Or Mad Men. Or it means I'll miss not working in general, because I meant to request today off just because I hate working Sundays (only I accidentally requested Saturday off. Sigh.).

Saturday, August 14, 2010

This is what I do most of the time...

I've got nothing better to do, so I'm going to write about stuff that I've found at thrift stores recently:

-My main course of action is usually to look for bobbleheads, and I believe my collection is up to about 40 as of right now. It's actually getting to the point where I'm running out of room to put them, since in my current state of living in between places (i.e. home) I just keep them over the fireplace, which has limited space and is already occupied by other stuff. Anyway, some of the bobbleheads I've found as of late, in order from psuedo-coolness to weird:

-Yoda and Boba Fett for about $0.90 apiece.
-Charles Barkley
-Mr. T
-WCW former world champion DDP.
-Bill Murray-except in a baseball uniform, playing for some random team named the Loggers. I saw that apparently the Saints gave this out as a giveaway, so I can only assume that this team is fictional, since it'd be pretty weird to give out something that acts as merchandise for other teams...
-A SpongeBob "bobblepants"... which I suppose is fitting.
-A drop of blood dressed up in a Phoenix Coyotes hockey jersey.

-ALSO, I've been finding myself in the habit of rebuilding my N64 collection (for I think the third time) when I saw a copy of FZero-X in a store and didn't buy it and then regretted it ever since (cause, you know... that game is ace). Since then, I've gotten Paper Mario, Goldeneye, 1080 Snowboarding and Rush 2: Extreme Racing.

I loved the Paper Mario games, but I never played the original one for whatever reason. (Just finished it last night, actually) I don't know. It's not the most challenging or deepest game in the history of mankind, but it's fun to play and it has a wicked sense of humor.

-AND... I just reset up my record player after having it sit around for a few months, and thus I've been also accumulating albums while out looking for bobbleheads. And I've found a lot of cool stuff: Surrealistic Pillow, The Cars' s/t, Neil Young's After The Gold Rush, Allman Brothers' Eat A Peach.

Unfortunately, I was about 1 minute from getting a $2 copy of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, as I saw it on top of stack of records that some employee had on her cart of stuff to put out. The thing is, the carts have specific instructions that you are not to shop off the carts, so I didn't want to just grab the record and risk getting in trouble. So I sort of semi-followed the employee, waiting for her to finally take it off the cart (which would be fair game and all), pretending to look at other stuff while really just trying to keep my eye on the record.

BUT THEN, I saw that SpongeBob thing and was EVER SO SLIGHTLY distracted by it when some jerkoff swiped it off the cart! What the heck? And the employee was all "oh, whatever!" Dammit! I had that!

I guess it's not a big deal that some people don't follow proper etiquette and stuff, but still... you know.

Oh well.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

I was watching the Arcade Fire live webcast of their Madison Square Garden show the other day. A few thoughts popped into my mind:

-The show looked pretty much exactly like the show I went to: meaning, same stage set up, same moments happening during songs (i.e. Win going up to the rafters, some guy running around and bashing a drum during Rebellion)... all that jazz.

-Apparently the webcast was directed by Terry Gilliam, which meant... well, nothing. That he likes the band and had a day off to hang out with them, I guess.

-The band still has this aura of self-seriousness that I don't really like. I mean, it's great and all that people's aiming for the stars and trying to be the best in the world and crap. But when you have the opinion that they've reached short of that "best in the world" moniker and yet find them still clinging desperately to that goal, your reaction is going to be "...OK, that's... great?" I think a lot of it is thanks to the hype as well. I read that BBC was comparing their newest album to OK Computer, which seems like such a stupid thing to say and an immediate turn off to anything regarding the band or the album. So pretty much no one is helping.

All that said... their newest album isn't bad.

It's not a classic by any means, and there's a point in which it all begins to sound the same (which I think comes down to the fact that it seems less complex and yet much longer than their other two albums), but you know... it's not bad. After Neon Bible, which was basically them trying to CHANGE THE WORLD WITH MUSIC, they needed their next album to be something less overwhelming in concept.

And so I've been able to just tune out any sort of overarching theme to the album (I'm pretty sure it has to do with the suburbs... and the kids), ignore all the lyrics (which is what I usually like to do and yet found it impossible to do on their last album) and just listen to what's there. And musically, they're not aiming to conquer the world like their last album, but instead going for intricate and atmospheric--sort of like Funeral, except without the killer songwriting. I've only given it a couple of spins, so I'm not really super familiar with all the songs, but here's a few that stand out:

City With No Children: I read somewhere that it sounds a bit like the Rolling Stones, which seems really weird but it's kind of true. But I don't know how to explain it... the song sounds sort of off. I'm explaining this as a good thing, you know.

Month Of May: I think everyone hates Month Of May, but I don't. Mainly because it's pretty much the only song on the album that's somewhat uptempo... which is a REALLY nice change of pace.

We Used To Wait: It has this killer beginning with a fantastic melody, and given the band's track record you'd expect it to develop into this epic crescendo like Wake Up or something. It doesn't... which saddens me for a bit, but it's probably for the better that it just builds its unsettling mood.

The Sprawl (Mountains Beyond Mountains): The obvious standout. It's the band stepping out of their comfort zone and tackling disco of all things-and yet it works magnificently.

I think I might have to help my girlfriend with Super Mario Galaxy here, so I guess I'm cutting things short, but in essence: it's not perfect, but it's a grower. And I'm totally fine with that.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I would like to take this moment...

...to feel sorry for myself.















*sigh*












OK. I'm good.

...

So I started watching Eastbound & Down tonight, which seems enjoyable enough, although probably better off for being only 6 episodes long since its main redeeming quality is... well, the lack of redeeming qualities in the main character. Which I would think would probably get old after a while.

ANYWAY. What really surprised me was that the show actually used this Tindersticks instrumental in two out of the three episodes I saw. Which is really weird, if you didn't know. I mean, the show has some pretty nasty and dark overtones but it is sort based off the archetypal Will Ferrell movie... which doesn't really lend itself to a morose British rock band.

In essence, listen to this song:



And try to imagine it set to this video:



And that's sort of how I felt.

You could even play them at the same time if you wanted to.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

About Inception...

I have a really hard time keeping track of character's names in films.

I'll get to why I'm mentioning this in a bit, but the crucial bit where a character introduces the name of another character always seems to elude me somehow. So in this movie, I just refer to Ellen Page as "Ellen Page," Joseph Gordon-Levitt as "Joseph Gordon-Levitt", and the Indian guy who looked like the Indian guy from "Drag Me To Hell" as "the Indian guy who looked like the Indian guy from "Drag Me To Hell". It usually works, but when another character exclaims something like "dammit *character name*, he took my VCR!" in what seems to be a crucial part of the plot, I get super confused and suddenly wish I would pay attention to small little details... like character names. You know that Ellen Page's name in this is Ariadne? What the hell kind of name is that?

Anyway, the reason why I mention that is because THE ENTIRE MOVIE makes me feel like a huge idiot.

Reading all the various recaps of what went down in the movie has made me forget exactly everything I was confused about, and I don't want to say anything in case anyone actually reads this and might get upset by a little bit of spoilers, but let's just say the movie is dense. And I wasn't trying to key in on every single detail, but rather just go along for the ride, but that backfired multiple times as something happened and left me confused as hell. It's not necessarily a bad thing, and I appreciate the fact that Nolan decided to pen a very dense script for an action blockbuster. But yeah... I'm not going to pretend that I'm someone who necessarily "got" the movie. Cause I didn't.

What I liked:
-Again, very audacious to make a film that pretty much demanded repeat viewings. Also liked that they didn't spend 20 minutes explaining all the characters and what their jobs were and just dropped the viewer right in. It's probably because they needed to spend a lot of time setting up the "inception", but still.
-That it essentially boiled down to a heist movie, except that it took place in the subconscious instead of a... museum, or whatever.
-The performances were pretty good, even though only about 4 characters had any sort of depth to them. And despite the fact that it's a huge action summer movie, it felt small, since there was pretty much only 8 characters through the entire film.
-Last shot = kind of brilliant.
-It kept me entertained.... (which is an incredibly astute thing to say, I know. But, I mean... I liked it, despite its flaws. And it was decidedly better than The Dark Knight for that matter as well. Just saying this before I talk about how much it SUCKED.)

What I wasn't crazy about:
-The point of the heist is sort of... well, it doesn't really pay off in any sort of way. I was kind of expecting that we'd get a bit more on whether or not inception is acceptable after a key plot point introduces this question, but no... it just sort of concludes. Also, the stakes of the inception didn't really get you invested. It was all for some dickhead businessman... which may have been the point, but they didn't really accentuate it very well. Or maybe they did... I could have missed it. (I feel really stupid trying to criticize this movie, for the record.)
-Any sort of thematic weight the film had seemed to be overshadowed by the complexities of the plot. Meaning, at the point where Leo DiCaprio reveals a crucial bit of information to Marion Cotillard, my reaction was "oh, so that's why this and that happened" instead of "oh, so that's why DiCaprio has been so angsty and crap." I don't know.

Anyway, to recap: Cool movie, better than guys in superhero outfits pretending to be in a "real crime drama" all while reciting some of the most amazingly stupid dialogue one would ever muster for a "serious" film, I didn't understand what the hell was going on, this post suffers because of it.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I haven't seen Inception yet, but I'm trying to keep an open mind about it. To the point where I've actually been somewhat excited to see it.

I mean, here's the thing: I kind of actively disliked The Dark Knight for reasons I've probably elaborated on before, The Prestige annoyed me, and Batman Begins was kind of just there. So in terms of Christopher Nolan, he's batting 0 for his last 3 with me. At the same time, though, I recognize that he has tons of talent (i.e. Memento) and that he's capable of producing something that I might actually like...

So yeah. The movie opened to some great reviews, plus it hasn't had a bunch of people proclaiming that "this isn't a superhero movie, this is art" which annoyed the hell out of me when The Dark Knight came out. Plus it has a pretty excellent cast (mostly Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who is pretty awesome. DiCaprio is really hit or miss with me), and all that has canceled out my disappointment with Nolan's last movie to place my expectations at a very reasonable position, which is good.

Then I logged into IMDB and saw that it was ranked as the #3 film of all time.

Not that I should be giving IMDB's top 250 much credence anyway, but still... a good majority of the films on the list are of pretty good quality. So when The Dark Knight climbed to #1 back when it came out, it made me expect some sort of unrivaled masterpiece that, while perhaps not the best film of all time, might stand as one of the best of my generation. Yeah, that didn't work out.

I'm now expecting the same thing from Inception, despite my full awareness of the stupidity of the IMDB top 250. I can't help it.

Dammit.

Oh, and because I'm bored, here's my rankings of the 2010 films I've seen so far this year. To sum it up, I've seen a lot of crap this year for God knows what reason.

1. Toy Story 3
2. Shutter Island
3. Hot Tub Time Machine
4. Macgruber
5. Iron Man 2
6. Shrek Forever After
7. Youth In Revolt
8. Greenberg
9. Runaways
10. Sorcerer's Apprentice
11. Spy Next Door

Number three and four were guilty pleasures Iron Man 2 and Greenberg were huge disappointments, and for the other films on the bottom of my list... I don't even know how I saw most of these.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

It's been hard to update, honestly. I haven't had a whole lot of free time, and work is stressing the crap out of me. I'm trying to find other employment, and I actually had an interview a few weeks back, but I don't deal with rejection well, so I haven't really looked for much since then as I'm trying to get out of this funk.

Anyway... I saw Sorcerer's Apprentice yesterday. It actually could have been a lot better. And I really don't get Hollywood's obsession with the current "total nerd ends up saving day and getting the girl." Cause I'm pretty sure any actual nerd would rather see some badass win at the end of the day instead of some lame attempt by Hollywood to cater to their demographic. Cause while you're making these lame dorks save the day in the end... you're still making them lame.

Basically, it needed more Nicolas Cage and Alfred Molina. Less Jay Baruchel trying to woo the girl he was heartbroken by when he was 10 YEARS OLD.

Anyway. The reason I'm writing this is because this last trip to the multiplex marked about the 5th time in my last 5 moviegoing experiences that my phone started ringing.

The reason why I am mentioning this is because I never receive phone calls.

I mean, I do. But usually it's when I'm expecting them. As in, if I'm hanging out with my girlfriend, and she's wondering something... or if she's calling me before I go to bed. That's it.

There's a few explanations for it.

A) I am the unluckiest person in the world.
B) There is a conspiracy.....

Either someone wants me to discontinue my patronage of fine movie theater establishments, and is using my cell phone as a long term plan to get me kicked out of every theater nearby.

OR. Someone just wants me to turn off my cell phone during movies. I used to never have this problem, since my old phone just vibrated all the time, and my new phone... even when I have it on vibrate, makes a loud noise when it wants me to know I missed a phone call. Which usually doesn't affect me... cause again, I never get phone calls. Except when I'm in the theater.

It's weird, because when I was going in to the movie yesterday, and I thought it might be wise to turn off my cell phone, because you know... I've been having troubles with it in the past few times I've gone into the theater. Then I thought "WAIT, I NEVER GET ANY PHONE CALLS. WHAT ARE THE ODDS THAT IT WOULD HAPPEN AGAIN?"

Which was beyond stupid.

So whoever is orchestrating this plot against me and my ignoring the "please turn off your cell phone" warnings... you win. My phone is going to be off, it's going to be on vibrate, it will be in a sound-proof case I will build for it in case for some inexplicable reason it still rings. I'm sorry if I have ever pissed anyone off, it will never happen again... or at least, it will never happen inside a movie theater again. Unless if the movie is particularly bad, and I can't help myself from making fun of your enjoyment of it. But I probably won't do that either.

So yeah.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Lebron James can most likely go to hell

(Note: none of this has any kind of actual insight. It's just me realizing that I'm going to most likely be cheering against Mr. James now)

For those who aren't following basketball... here's the thing. Lebron James is the best (arguably) player in the NBA. He's been playing for his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers for his entire professional career. Cleveland loves him and he's pretty much the only thing preventing the town from economic ruination (or so tells me that Cleveland tourism YouTube video). Well... he's been flirting with free agency for a while, and many teams have been saving money in the hopes of signing him once he actually becomes a free agent. Now he's a free agent. And now it's all over the news.

It's actually kind of interesting even though my current interest in the NBA is mainly based on the fact that it pretty much fixes games. Not only could an entire city kill itself, but the possibility of a SUPERDYNASTY emerging after this offseason looms pretty large. Here's the thing, though... I think Lebron is kind of screwing over the Cavaliers. The franchise/city has done pretty much everything to make him happy and make sure he stays, and yet he's still most likely leaving. So in pretty much every scenario, Lebron becomes my least favorite player.

Let's list the scenarios that might occur:

LEBRON JOINS BULLS--WHO SIGNS ANOTHER BIG FREE AGENT TO GO ALONG WITH ROSE--OR LEBRON JOINS HEAT ALONG WITH DWYANE WADE AND ANOTHER BIG FREE AGENT:

This is the most likely situation I would suppose, since I would assume the reason why Lebron would leave is because he wants to win a championship and wants to give himself the easiest time to do so. Which isn't *really* a terrible thing... but since I hate the Yankees for signing every big free agent every year in the hopes of giving themselves the best chance of winning, I can't not hate them. Also, the "leave the only team to join a loaded team in the hopes of winning a championship" move seems only acceptable to me as a last resort, i.e. you are aging and your team isn't going anywhere... or if your team just sucks. Lebron's in the prime of his career and can easily take the Cavs to the finals. So winning a title isn't going to make people think you're on the level of Michael Jordan if you're winning it with Dwyane Wade on your side.

LEBRON SIGNS WITH THE NEW YORK KNICKS:

...which would mean that championships is secondary to money and the spotlight to Lebron. If that's the case, then f*** him. I mean, the Knicks *might* be decent, but I doubt it'll be a marked improvement over his current situation with the Cavaliers.

LEBRON SIGNS WITH THE CAVALIERS... BUT ONLY FOR THREE YEARS, WHICH MEANS WE'D GET TO GO THROUGH THIS ALL OVER AGAIN:

This is the "Lebron is a pussy" route. If he signs for three years, it'll mean he just wants to maintain his savior status in Cleveland without ACTUALLY committing to stay. Which means that the first sign of trouble, he'll be thinking of bailing... which, you know, will most likely give the Cavs that extra boost that'll finally bring them a title.

Basically, if I were Lebron... I'd sign with the Cavs longterm. And if the team completely derails or if it's 6-7 years down the road and there's no sign that the Cavs will be contending for a championship soon, then you can reassess and go to a better team. But commit to the damn team first, you know? Cause it's not going to be a happy marriage if you're keeping your options open making the team scramble to make moves in an attempt to keep you here.

LEBRON SIGNS WITH THE TIMBERWOLVES:

... well, I guess I'd be OK with that.

Monday, June 21, 2010

So I got Red Dead Redemption a few days back.

Which means that most of my free time has been given to that.

Much to the chagrin of my ongoing search for better employment.

And to the chagrin of my attempt to keep writing.

AND to the chagrin of everything else.

It's a pretty fantastic game, however. As it turns out, marrying GTA and the West was an amazing idea, and I'm really enjoying the "anything goes" mentality the game possesses.

If there's one problem so far, it's that there's this cougar. And it hates me.

Which might not be a problem if it didn't also insist on mauling me to death (I can live with the cougar hating me yet passively harbors feelings of contempt and not gnawing on my leg). And he does it JUST as I skin and kill a few wolves so my master hunter rating will go up. Or when I collect another red sage to improve my flower collecting rating (or whatever it's called), meaning that all the stuff I had just done gets wiped out. Grr.

I can see if he's got some type of pact with the wolves where if any hostility is acted upon the wolves, he (and I'll just go ahead and assume it's a he) comes in and protects them. You know, going against the common enemy and stuff. But WHY ON EARTH ARE YOU ATTACKING ME WHEN I'M PICKING FLOWERS?

It doesn't make sense. I searched for "Cougars like flowers" in Google and no results were found. And even if it did hold a particular fondness for red sages, it's not like I'm picking the entire f'n patch. I'm doing it so people all around the area will know me for my intense flower picking capabilities. Also I'm helping some old guy out and grabbing some flowers so he can give them to his wife. Why would he be so opposed to a guy giving his wife a gift? Was he heartbroken by a dashing female cougar and now hates the very concept of love, thus ruining any opportunity where love might flourish?

It might just be because he thinks I'm weak for picking flowers. But this is silly. I'm a badass with huge scars on my face, and I tried taking you on with a knife. Which was stupid, yes... but weak? Well... if you consider stupidity and weakness pretty much the same, I suppose.

I'm trying to figure out a way to get back at the cougar, but as of right now I don't want to go anywhere near them. I'm kind of fearing that it's just going to roll into town one day while I'm playing horseshoes and beat the crap out of me. Obviously I'm not in the right state of mind for battle.

I've heard there are bears in the game too.

I hope they are cuddlier than the cougars are.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Is it bad that in the World Cup match between Brazil and North Korea... I'm kind of cheering for North Korea?

That must be a bad thing.

Cause... you know, North Korea= bad and grr and super evil and such. But the only reason I would watch these games is to hope for massive upsets that totally confound expectations. It's kind of like the NCAA tournament... when in doubt, ALWAYS cheer for the underdog.

Plus, I figured that Brazil would be up at least a goal half an hour into it, so the fact that it's still tied pretty much forces me to cheer for the underdogs.

But... you know.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Wah wah wah

Sara and I were supposed to watch some movie before heading to the restaurant down the street for some late night appetizers, but she is taking a long time emailing/internetting. So I'm jumping at the chance to update this place.

Maybe she's just killing time.... and expecting me to grab her when I'm ready to watch something. Hmm.

I bought another bobblehead today. Last time I wrote about this I had one. Now I have six. By this time next week I might have 322. I just bought a bobblehead of the Empire Today guy for $3 at a thrift store while killing time waiting to pick up Sara from work. And then I bought an Iron Man bobblehead for $8 at work. AND then last week at a garage sale, I found Colonel Sanders, Count Chocula and Popeye for $3 each.

Just so you know, I'm going full out hardcore on this.

Seriously, I plan to have a huge collection-50 by the end of the year and 500 by the time I'm 30 or so. It's probably going to be all I talk about at some point and you'll probably want to spend less time interacting with me as a result, but nonetheless I DON'T CARE. The things are kitschy and weird and I'll collect a bunch of pop culture characters and mascots and presidents and obscure pitchers for the Kansas City Royals and it's going to be great.

I'm going to try writing more often.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The other day I woke up and my fish tank was on fire...

True story.

Well, I didn't necessarily see any fire. But I saw smoke. And old sayings are always correct.

I've been away for a while. This is because I have been moving/going out of town/hanging out and such. Thus I haven't really had time for anything other than that stuff. But things are sort of slowing down now, which means I might be able to toss off a few posts every now and then.

Except that I've been playing a lot of games recently. Plus I haven't picked up Super Mario Galaxy 2 yet. Plus I've heard really good things about Red Dead Redemption. So... yeah.

Wanna know what I did during that long stretch?

-Drove down to lower Wisconsin with the girlfriend! YEAH! It was exciting... except for the fact that I had to deal with a flat tire. I mean, that was exciting, but in the wrong kind of way.

-Visited the Spam Museum, which is probably the greatest ridiculous and inessential museum out there. I mean, it's pretty essential if you want the history of Hormel and Spam. Cause you get to learn about the founder of the company through puppets and telephone conversations. But other than that... it's kind of silly... and amazing. There's a Spam quiz that you can take in this studio that's kind of awesome. Plus you can see who is able to can Spam the fastest. I won the Spam can-off by a second. It was intense.

-Helped out on Sara's grandmother's farm. Which by that I mean... sat around mostly while other people worked. So her family might secretly resent me. I have no way of knowing.

-Went to a drive-in theater and saw a double feature. Mini-reviews on both:

Shrek 4: I liked the first one, hated the second one, never saw the third. So I thought this would be terrible. Imagine my surprise, when it actually turned out to be bland and inessential instead of offensive and annoying! I thought pop culture jokes would trample all over the entire film, but thankfully it was all kept to a minimum. The story is kind of underdeveloped and the characters seemed rather one dimensional, but hey... guess ripping off "It's A Wonderful Life" grants you a decent amount of mileage. RATING: 5 OUT OF 10 OR SO.

Iron Man 2: I heard this was going to be disappointing... and it was. Didn't seem nearly as fun and exciting as the first one. Plus, I was totally digging Mickey Rourke as the bad guy, and for the first 20 minutes it seems as if he might develop into someone cool... but then he gets relegated to the background for the rest of the movie. And then the final fight he's in is pretty much the least climatic final battle I've ever seen (SPOILERS: Mickey Rourke rigs a bunch of bombs, Iron Man dodges them in about 5 seconds, and that's it. (What?)). It was another film that seemed sort of underbaked, but perhaps I was missing some crucial information by having the drive-in experience (with the crappy radio sound and all). But then again... probably not. RATING: 5 OUT OF 10-ish.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Oh holy balls.

Nickelodeon's classic Nicktoon lineup is (for all intents and purposes) on Netflix's Watch Instantly now.

Now, it doesn't have ALL the seasons of Rocko's Modern Life (and it probably doesn't have other seasons of other shows), nor does it have Doug (assuming it's because they lost the rights to Disney or something), BUT:

The good seasons of Rugrats, Angry Beavers, Hey Arnold, some probably censored episodes of Ren & Stimpy, the first season of Rocko, and Invader Zim for good measure.

This is fantastic, in case you didn't know.

Not just because I get to effectively relive my childhood and all, but also because they're all quality cartoons. I mean, Rugrats sucked for the majority of its run, but before the movie it was actually a pretty well written show. Hey Arnold had a cool, relaxed vibe to it (or maybe my perception of it is just clouded by its jazzy theme song...), Angry Beavers was fun as hell, and Invader Zim had the stigma of being worshipped by a few too many annoying teenagers... but it still had that great twisted, bizarre sense of humor.

It doesn't have everything though. Like Doug, which is unfortunate. Or Rocket Power, Wild Thornberrys or Catdog, but screw those shows. It also has Aaahh Real Monsters, but f*** that. IT'S GOT ANGRY BEAVERS! I HAVEN'T SEEN THAT SHOW IN YEARS!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Collections

Like most people who have nothing better to do with their lives, I like to collect stuff.

Unlike most people who have nothing better to do with their lives, I am too lazy to devote much time to the stuff I'm collecting, so my collections end up being more ideas rather than actual physical groups of stuff.

I hope to change this at some point... you know, once I have a disposable income (and become a teenager again), but as it is, I am going to have to slowly chip away at these collections while I try to fill them out.

That said, I decided to start a new collection today.

My birthday present was a Squidward made out of beads. It pretty much looks ten kinds of amazing.

How amazing was it? Well, so amazing that I thought to myself "Hey! I should start a Squidward collection! Cause he's awesome and stuff."

So I did.

I went to the Mall of America looking for Squidward related items, since I knew they'd have something after Nickelodeon crushed my memories of Camp Snoopy. The problem is that SpongeBob merchandise is inexplicably mostly centered around SpongeBob. SpongeBob and Patrick. So out of all the stores that was filled with SpongeBob and Patrick crap, I found three Squidward items-a pin, a coffee thermos, and a plush toy.

Which blows, because my Squidward collection won't thrive without a handy convenient location for all my Squidward needs. All it means is that I will have to work much harder at continuing this collection than I had previously realized.

Which means the collection is screwed.

(Also... Squidward was the start of another one of my collections, when I bought the Squidward Lego keychain at the Lego store and found myself collecting Lego keychains. I now also have a Santa Lego keychain and a Lego Rock Band generic character, which I got for free at work.)

(Squidward did not start my other other collection of bobbleheads. Although that would have been amazing... I only have one bobblehead, though. It's of Kevin Garnett as a Timberwolf that I found at a Goodwill for $2. I've had plenty of opportunities to buy other bobbleheads before Garnett, but the circumstances were never quite right. Oh well.)

Monday, May 17, 2010

LCD Soundsystem-This Is Happening

Apparently no one is going to say this, but this album kind of blows.

I mean, it's got its highlights, but for some inexplicable reason the press is going wild and giving it absurdly high scores. I don't know what it is. Maybe it's the fact that the dude is the same age as most of these writers and is still making what appears to be "hip" music. Whatever. All I know is that I'm not getting it AT ALL.

I like Sound Of Silver quite a bit. Sure, it sounded derivative or whatever, but the songs that really work (Get Innocuous, Someone Great, All My Friends) sounded fresh enough that it seemed as if he had moved on from his influences and created something that was entirely his own. I'm not getting that vibe from this album. Things sound like a retread. Things sound as if on cruise control.

All I Want sounds like Bowie's Heroes. Which is good, right? Cause Heroes is an amazing song, you know? Well, it is. This is not. There's the underpinning sadness that popped up in Someone Great and All My Friends, but it doesn't make the same kind of impact. Maybe because it just builds up to some annoying synths being laid over the repeating Heroes riff.

Drunk Girls is terrible. It sounds as if he wanted to write a dumb frat boy anthem--but with IRONY!!! Except... you're still trying to write a dumb frat boy anthem.

Pow Pow and One Touch are pretty much retooled versions of songs released on prior albums, but not nearly as well executed and sounding mostly like 16 minutes of filler. You Wanted A Hit is a blatant f-you to the record company or something, which immediately turns me off. Plus it just goes on for 9 minutes without really doing anything interesting (maybe that was the point... how provocative).

I think what I'm getting at is that the album feels LONG and not nearly as inspired as the previous album. There are redeeming moments, but it's just that the songs that I would deem legitimately great (Home) or near-great (Dance Yrself Clean) bookend the album, which means it's a tough slog between the two songs. I Can Change has a nice chorus, but the NES-esque synths prevent from really connecting with me.

But about the two songs I really enjoy: Dance Yrself Clean is a great opener, starting with this great minimalistic groove before the synths take over, which along with the vocals actually transforms the song this desperate and plaintive giant. The only negative is that it returns to the minimalism of the first section around the six minute mark, which I thought made a great ending. But then the synths come back... which is OK, but you know. A bit excessive.

Home sounds like the followup to All My Friends, except with a warm and comforting vibe (which I guess is fitting for a song called "Home"...) that sounds so amazingly refreshing after about 6 songs I feel for all intents and purposes middle-of-the-road about. So maybe that's the reason why I like it so much.

Here are some videos to make up for the fact that I wrote this at a way too late hour:



Friday, May 14, 2010

It's my birthday soon...

Not that I am announcing this just because I like to draw attention to myself (even though I do... and secretly this is why I'm saying this), but I'm pretty excited for it.

No particular reason why. In fact, I should be kind of dreading pretty much everything right about now, because:

1) I have to move all the big stuff home.
2) I need to cancel my internet service, which has turned out to be a problem because Comcast's website NEVER EVER works when it's supposed to.
3) I struggle with procrastinating, so "moving stuff home" and "trying in vain to cancel internet service" is a lot for me to do without me taking a mental breather. Which prevents me from looking at jobs and cars... which is what I need to do ASAP.

Not that I need to do all this stuff before the 20th, but... this all seems kind of daunting. Or at least it should seem daunting. Instead, my birthday is in 6 days. So I'm focusing on that and the positives of birthday stuff, which is:

1) I'll probably get treated to dinner somewhere.
2) People on Facebook will write happy birthday on my wall as part of their yearly communication with me (because... you know, my social life has hit nadir that this is something to look forward to).
3) The past few Mays I've had to worry about both school and moving. Well, now I only have to worry about one of those! Yeah!

Plus, Super Mario Galaxy comes out 4 days or so after my birthday. And although it'll be hard to justify spending $50 on it when I should be thrifty... maybe I'll get $10 or so from a relative. So that makes it pretty much $40. Which is somewhat better.

Also, Macgruber comes out the day after my birthday. Yes, I'm excited. No, I don't think that's something to be ashamed about.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I'M GONNA BE YOUR LOVER BABY I'M GONNA BE YOUR MAN
I'M GONNA BE YOUR LOVER BABY I'M GONNA BE YOUR MAN

....

GONNA BE YOUR MAN!
GONNA BE YOUR MAN!
GONNA BE YOUR MAN!
GONNA BE YOUR MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN

It goes something like that.

After playing about 10 minutes of Beatles Rock Band, this got stuck in my head. It will never leave. Never ever.

Monday, May 10, 2010

High Violet

The National's new album comes out today. Of course, since I am a bad person, I've already digested it a couple times. But I'm only choosing to write about it now, because I didn't want you to know that I am a bad person and listened to it early.

So, expectations were not all that high on my end. Which might sort of be untrue, since their previous two albums probably would have placed #1 and #2 on my "best-of-decade" list (which I am sure I wrote at some point, but I'm too lazy to look for it right now). But that was it: they released two absolutely amazing albums in a row, so making and releasing a third consecutive amazing album--all the while dealing with the added pressures that a booming popularity and that audience's heightened expectations--seemed unlikely to happen.

And it didn't. Quality stuff though it is, it didn't give me the same thrill that the punch of Alligator and the drive of Boxer gave me. But I'm OK with that, you know? They crafted a solid piece of music, didn't embarrass themselves. and made a record that won't turn off any of the prospective listeners while still maintaining their overall sound.

It's weird, though. It seems as if they're making a play for the limelight by creating such a lush, epic and grand album... but overall everything seems much more refined and restrained. Case in point: they played Terrible Love on Jimmy Fallon a month or two back, and while it had me excited for the album, it sounded slightly off. Mainly, it sounded as if they were trying a little *too* hard to make this big, epic rock anthem that 30 somethings would be pounding their fists to at the 20,000-seat arena concert. So what they do on record is pretty much ruin the song by using a demo-esque recording and de-emphasizing the guitars in favor of a much more moodier sound. It loses the sheen the song seemed to have developed while also making it much more powerful in the process.

Overall as well, the guitars and drums have been de-emphasized in favor of more intricate arrangements. It's a move that fits the batch of songs that they have, but it does lead me to miss the Apartment Stories and Mr. Novembers. Which is probably why I love Bloodbuzz Ohio so much, simply because it seems like a song written during the sessions of Boxer and comes in at the exact time when I'm yearning for something sounding like a Boxer track. I heard the song a month or so back, and while enjoyable, I was hoping that there were much stronger tracks in store for me. It sounds much more magnificent in the context of the album.

Other highlights: England takes a while to build up, but by the end it's grand and bohemian--aiming for the bigger sound I assumed they'd go for, but in an intricate manner. Which is usually preferable to having the song beat you over the head about how it is about to change the world or whatever. (Basically, I'm basing my opinion on this album based on my opinions on Arcade Fire's Neon Bible, which tried to sound bigger and more important--and eventually ended up just pissing me off to no end).

Lemonworld I go back and forth between love and hate. I hate how it starts out (with the simple one note guitar strumming and all), but it ends up picking up steam... plus the chorus is pretty much the best thing on the album. And Afraid Of Everyone seems to drift pretty heavily into Radiohead territory--which is a good thing. It's menacing as hell. And Little Faith again takes a while to get going--but the arrangement is just dark, sinister and lovely.

Not a huge fan of Anyone's Ghost, which sports a terrible chorus and doesn't have the pulsating beat to make it work as either a rock song or something more dense and atmospheric. And Runaway's pretty, but sounds too much like Racing Like A Pro (not one of my favorites--plus this song's about twice as long).

All in all, though--pleased. Not wowed nor disappointed, rather just happy that it will hopefully convert more people into fans. Which will then lead people to discover how awesome Alligator is, since that's the most commercial-sounding the band will probably ever get.

It's 2 AM. This is enough.