Thursday, December 31, 2009

40goingon28's Best of the Decade Awards

The Aughts! Wow. So that started with Y2K and then we were all like "Oh, that Bush totally stole the election" and then it was boring for a while and then 9/11 happened and things pretty much went in the shitter after that. Dad says that we shouldn't have walked on the Moon, that it threw everything out of balance when we walked on the Moon, and hey, that's as good a theory as any. I think he's kidding, though. He maintained that one of my friends was the Unabomber for a long time until they caught the real Unabomber so you can never really tell with him.

In the Aughts I lived in North Beach, changed jobs, got divorced, lived in Cole Valley, went to Texas, went to Ireland, went to England, went to South Carolina, went to Oregon a few times, got married, and a bunch of other stuff. It's been a good time.

Best album: The Wrens, Meadowlands

If you really care, ask me and I'll bore you to death with why. If you don't know about it, just listen to it and get back to me.

Best cioppino: Caesar's, on Powell.

Best showers: The two I took consecutively immediately upon returning from my one and only Burning Man, in 2004.

Best wedding: Probably mine, earlier this year. OK, definitely mine, earlier this year.

Best bar (overall): Zeitgeist. Remember, I'm covering a whole decade here.

Best bar (early 2000's): Tony Nik's. Has anyone been there lately? What's it like now?

Worst thing that happened to me: Getting hosed for a shitload of money by my ex.

Best thing that happened to me: Getting a dog. KIDDING! Meeting and marrying The Wife. Everybody together now: AWWWWWWWWWW.

Thanks to everybody who made this decade possible. You guys are all awesome.

Happy New Year! Don't smoke too much. See you next year.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

"Natural causes": Our Nation's New Menace

Authorities said Monday it appeared actress Brittany Murphy died of natural causes after becoming ill with flulike symptoms in the days before she collapsed in the bathroom of her Hollywood Hills home.


The drummer with Avenged Sevenfold, a rising force in the heavy metal scene, died on Monday at his home in southern California, the group and authorities said.

James Owen Sullivan, nicknamed "The Rev," appeared to have died of natural causes, Huntington Beach police Lt. John Domingo said. He was 28.

WTF? Natural causes used to mean "died of old age." Now, apparently, it basically covers everything. 28-year-olds do not just die. There's a reason. I mean, fuck, I guess you could get hit by a bus and then someone could say "He died of natural causes after he suffered massive organ failure," but that wouldn't really be telling the whole story, would it?

Brittany Murphy was on like 38 prescription drugs. MAYBE that had something to do with her death. The drummer guy, I have no idea, but c'mon, do the math. He was a professional musician. Maybe - just maybe - drugs might have been involved?

In the meantime, forget about H1N1 or underwear bombers. The real thing to be afraid of is that "natural causes." It's coming to get you.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Jukebox of Terror

I was at Bloodhound on Saturday evening, hanging out and watching the Emerald Bowl (meh, kinda boring) and drinking and so forth. It was pretty dead; there were only maybe 10 people in the place, total. One of the owners was playing a great mix of old soul and funk from his iPod, which we were heartily enjoying, when one of our fellow patrons stepped up to the jukebox. What followed was an object lesson in why some people should never be allowed around a jukebox.

Now, let me preface this by saying that Bloodhound has a pretty good jukebox. It's not one of those Internet jukeboxes that lets you play any song ever recorded; no, it's preloaded with CDs, but there's some great stuff on there, like Blitzen Trapper's "Furr" and "Dear Science" by TV on the Radio and both discs of "The Essential Clash." Homegirl skipped right over all this musical goodness.

No, she seemed bound and determined to play a set that sounded just like any drive time on KFOG, one tired, played-out radio hit after another. You know what's great after Fleetwood Mac's "Say You Love Me"? Why, "Jammin'" by Bob Marley, that's what! Oh yay! And then how about "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic"? I've only heard that 10 or 12 thousand times. I almost forgot what that sounded like. What, nothing from "Steel Wheels"? I can tell you wanna rock; that's why you put on "You Better You Bet," one of the lamest Who songs. Am I in a bar, or in the back of a soccer mom's Windstar? "Hey Mom, play 'Fire and Rain' next!! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!!!!"

By the time her set mercifully ended and mine started, it was about time to go. She put on like 15 songs of relentless blandness. The musical equivalent of American cheese and mayonnaise on Wonder bread. Painful.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

It was Christmas Eve

The Pogues and Kirsty McColl, "Fairytale of New York"

I truly hope you all have a wonderful Christmas.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

I'm going Christmas shopping today

The Charge of the Light Brigade
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!
"Charge for the guns!" he said:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!"
Was there a man dismay'd?
Not tho' the soldier knew
Someone had blunder'd:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Rode the six hundred.
Flash'd all their sabres bare,
Flash'd as they turn'd in air,
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
All the world wonder'd:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro' the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reel'd from the sabre stroke
Shatter'd and sunder'd.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley'd and thunder'd;
Storm'd at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro' the jaws of Death
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.
When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wondered.
Honor the charge they made,
Honor the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred.

I took the day off to go shopping. Pray for me.

One semi-related note: My first thought last night was "Hey, I don't have to get up in the morning, I should drink tonight." My second thought was, "Wow, that sounds like something someone in college would say." I didn't drink last night. Growing up.

We watched "Up" instead. It was cute enough. As the main character is voiced by Ed Asner, I couldn't get Lou Grant out of my head. Needed more swears. You know that old guy would be swearing up a storm, kid there or not.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Yeah, we saw Avatar.

Yes, yes, we surrendered to popular culture and went to see Avatar yesterday. Let's talk about it for a minute.

First, the obvious stuff. Visually, it's pretty much unlike anything you've ever seen. Incidentally, if you don't see it in 3-D, don't bother. I can't imagine it looking right without the 3-D. There are some black plastic Buddy Holly glasses you get. The 3-D looks pretty amazing.

Now, having said that, it doesn't look real. I mean, you're not going to forget you're watching a movie. The alien characters, who are all done with CGI, don't look like they really exist in a real way. But that doesn't mean they're not cool to look at. Anyway, I think Tom Maurstad from the Dallas Morning News pretty much nailed it:
At more than 2 ½ hours, Avatar is full of overlong sequences of flying and fighting in which Cameron just can't resist showcasing all the cool things he can do with his computers and cameras. And it is cool. But all this "change the way you look at films" hype is just that. While Avatar is impressively seamless, you're never fooled. This doesn't look like a documentary film; it looks like a video game.
Since this is a James Cameron movie, the dialogue is terrible, sometimes cringingly bad. You know, if Cameron would let somebody talented write the dialogue for his films, he would really have something. He's got the visual part down, but if you could watch "Titanic," for example, without groaning repeatedly at the ridiculous dialogue, you're a stronger person than I.

Does this look like a real person to you? Me neither.

So yeah, it's a spectacle and it's going to make a ton of money (so far, $232 million, if you count foreign and domestic, and it's only been out FOUR DAYS) and if I keep trying to judge it on its merits as a film, rather than as an event, I guess I'm not going to get anywhere. So, by all means, go see it.

Also, it should be about a half-hour shorter, but I guess once you develop all new 3-D technology, you want to use it.

[UPDATE: IRONY ALERT!!!!! - I just saw this interview with Cameron and Peter Jackson, and Cameron says: "People often ask us about the future of filmmaking because we've both been innovators in the last few years, creating cutting-edge stuff that gets widely or narrowly adopted. I think the simple answer is that filmmaking is not going to ever fundamentally change. It's about storytelling. It's about humans playing humans. It's about close-ups of actors." No additional comment from me needed, right? L O L.]

Friday, December 18, 2009

Goldschlager is a sometimes food

You thought you could always count on Cookie Monster. Sure, we can't smoke in the grocery store any more, people look at you funny if you have a couple of Crown Royal rocks at lunch, and now I have to bring my own tote bag to the grocery store like an NPR listener with a little grey ponytail. Fine, whatever. At least Cookie Monster was still out there. He was all FUCK YOUR RULES, I EAT COOKIES, THAT'S WHAT I DO, TAKE YOUR SALAD AND YOUR SOY MOCHA AND SHOVE IT UP YOUR ASS.

Then they got to him too. Because you know what? Now "cookie is a sometimes food." Oh, fuck, CM, I am so sorry. You were the rebel, the danegrous one, and now you're putting on your New Spirit cross-trainers and doing yoga and having a smoothie. This sucks. I prefer to remember you as you were:

Cookie was good enough for all of us, Cookie Monster. For all of us.

Don't stare at Oscar the Grouch if he's looking a little placid and glassy-eyed. It's the klonopin.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Thank you for the lovely party. I had a wonderful time.


The Wife and I kicked off Vaguely Christmastime Date Night at Epic Roasthouse and oh my, me without my Platinum Card! It was full of swells. I was just about the only guy not wearing a suit. Whatever. Everything we got was really good. I didn't take any camera phone pictures of the food because I'm not one of those people, so here:

Imagine 8 delicious ounces subtracted from this, then expertly seasoned and grilled to medium rare perfection. That shit was excellent. What else? We got some ahi tuna, also very good, some scalloped potatoes (OK, not as good as Craft or even my Dad's; I shit you not, my Dad makes scalloped potatoes you would fucking kill for), some kind of brussels sprouts (they were OK b/c you couldn't taste the brussels sprouts), green beans amandine (DFL; is it almondine or amandine? I swear it said amandine on the menu), and a bottle of 2006 Loring pinot noir which we both loved a ton.

I'm not gonna lie to you, it was expensive, but for a once-a-year splurge, you could do a lot worse. Plus, what recession? They were doing land office business.

Then it was off to the SF Appeal Christmas Party. Oh, whoops, Holiday Party, in case you hate Christmas like all of us in SF do. Recognized Spotswood and Brock at the door because I've seen them on my Internet Box before. Got some free drinks and hung out. It was packed. Talked to Beth most of the time, who couldn't have been nicer. Then I said to Brock, "Hey, I love your site." I am a fucking idiot.

Then they ran out of booze and if I don't have booze I'm like Santa without cocaine so we had to go. SEE YOU GUYS NEXT YEAR!! KIT!!!

(I hear Chris Daly showed up after we left and brought more drizinks, but just as well. I would have said something wrong and gotten him mad at me and the last thing I need is Chris Daly angry at me.)

(Seriously, though, big thanks to the Appeal for a sweet-ass party. Will do business again.)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Other than the Santa picture, everything in this post involves an open bar.

Let's get meta for a second.

I got this email invitation to attend the SF Appeal's Christmas Holiday Party, which is tonight. And at first I was all "THAT'S RIGHT THEY HAVE INVITED ONLY THOUGHT LEADERS TO THIS EVENT" and then I quickly realized that they were promoting it on their front page and it's free and there's free booze so basically anyone who can operate a mouse and read at a 5th grade level could figure out how to go and drink up all the free booze. Just imagine your party overrun with the people you see using the free Internet terminals at the library. I'm sure it won't be like that. Maybe.

Point being that I've been doing this blogging thing for about a year and a half now and I've got a pretty steady readership and have been linked to, in the past, by such local luminary sites as SFist and SF Citizen and Eye on Blogs and Beth Spotswood even put a permalink to me on her blog. So I'm sort of part of this community of local bloggers, I guess, even though it's pretty much just an online thing and so far I've kept my Real World and my Blogging World separate, save for one exception, when I met JohnnyO from Burrito Justice. Super nice guy.

So I'm like "Do I want to become public? Like actually meet some of these people for real?" And The Wife said, "What are you going on about now? I was watching Vampire Diaries." And I said "Never mind."

So I don't know. The Wife and I are going out to our Special Christmas Date Night Dinner and we'll play it by ear after that. I guess, worse comes to worse, it'll just be another party where I don't know anyone that I crashed for the free booze. We'll see.

IN OTHER NEWS, this is now my favorite Christmas picture of all time.

When I have kids, I'm going to blow this up to poster size and hang it behind the tree every Christmas. It is five kinds of awesome.


As you may have gathered, I'm not exactly the dance club type. Thumpa thumpa music kind of makes me want to kill myself. Thus, of course, I've never been to Suite 181 or any of its ilk. And THE LAST PLACE IN THE FUCKING WORLD I would go on New Year's Eve is a place like that.

But wait. I saw this ad and Suite 181 has limited $40 advance tickets available for theie NYE thing, which includes, according to them, "OPEN BAR ALL NIGHT."

WHOA. HOLD THE PHONE, BIG MAN. That means I pay $40 and drink whatever I want all night? I can make that $40 back in an hour. Are you sure? What's the catch? What am I missing?

Because if there's no catch, you might find me in an Ed Hardy shirt with a shitload of gel in my hair and covered in Axe body spray this New Year's Eve. When in Rome.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Obama wants cavemen to stare menacingly at you

As regular readers know, I'm a big fan of weird and even weirder advertising, but this one takes the cake.

WTF TIMES A MILLION. Obama asks Moms to return to school to what, become male loggers or serial killers? To study Cro-Magnon man? To join a freak-folk band? WHAT THE FUCK COULD THIS ILLUSTRATION POSSIBLY MEAN?

I hope I'm wrong about this, but it makes me think that Internet display ads are constructed entirely by computers. They select an image at random from their memory, assign it randomly to some text, and place it on various websites.

[Also, and this feels entirely like piling on, the fact that Pell grants are available for returning students does not, in fact, mean that Obama has asked Moms to return to school, any more than the fact that the U.S. Army owns helicopters means that Obama has asked teenagers to take rotary-wing flying lessons.]

Friday, December 11, 2009

The LHC, the end of the world as we know it, and my brief career in particle physics

Let us all collectively now take a break from Tiger and the 10 11 12 mistresses and the Muni stabber and Copenhagen and South Carolina governors and Top Chef and whatnot and instead talk about something that will TRULY BLOW YOUR FUCKING MIND. I'm not even kidding.

So there's this thing called the Large Hadron Collider on the France-Switzerland border, or I guess, technically under the border, since it's way underground. It's a big ring that's like 17 miles around, and what happens is that science guys go down there and shoot subatomic particles at each other and try and find shit like the Higgs boson and figure out why we have mass and where everything comes from and who sent the UFO that's buried under the ocean floor near New Zealand. I might have made that last part up.

If you're saying "What the fuck is that thing?," you're not alone.

Anyway, it's totally fucking complicated and just click on the Wiki link if you want to read more. Me, I'm personally kind of interested in string theory and particle physics and cosmology but I figured out early on that wouldn't be my life's calling when I found that I couldn't mulitply 5 times 6 without looking it up and all this shit apparently requires a pretty good grasp of math. We're getting way off the point here.

Now here's the thing. Because of the way it works (and that's as specific as I can get), there is a nonzero chance that the LHC may produce miniature black holes. WHAT THE FUCK. No, seriously. As we all know, black holes are bad news because they suck in everything around them and so forth. Now, the LHC people obviously don't want anyone thinking they could destroy the Earth with their accidental mini black holes, so everyone's toeing the company line and telling you what they want you to hear: "Destroy the world? Pshaw. This thing's safer than a riding mower. Your clock radio has a better chance of creating a world-ending event." That's what they want you to think.

As it happens, the LHC has been beset by problems. Like one thing after another. And they're weird problems. Like a bird dropping a baguette into the fucking thing. You could not make this shit up.

Here comes the mindblowing part: I had this theory, which I freely admit was probably caused by watching too much sci-fi as a kid, about why the LHC couldn't get fired up. Here's my theory: All the shit they told us not to worry about is real, and the reason they can't start it is because people from the future are traveling back through time to sabotage it so we won't destroy the Earth.

WHOA DUDE. THAT IS FUCKED UP. Have you ever really looked at your hand before? Let's order pizza.

So I was all, "Man, I'm not just a drunk with a blog and much younger wife. I have come up with some groundbreaking shit here. Who do I call about this?"

But of course, I shoulda known better. After Googling for about 3 seconds, I find out I'm not really the first person to think of this. Much smarter people have already thought this up and probably used math. (Although, to my credit, these guys think the Higgs boson went back in time to kill it. I don't even get that at all. I say it was a couple of guys in jumpsuits. Which one do you prefer?)

Sorry for this brief interlude into the world of subatomic physics. We'll return to booze and Jersey Shore and shit like that next week. Unless they start that LHC up. DUN DUN DUN!!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

New Bar Night: Carlo's, Dirty Thieves

Once again, your three intrepid adventurers drunks set out into that Good Night to go to a couple of places where at least two, and maybe all three, of us had never been. You call it New Bar Night. We call it maize.

Hey, I bet you anything you've seen the exterior of Carlo's Bar more than the inside of your own stove or maybe even your mother's face. That's because it's perched next to 24th Street BART and everybody takes 24th Street BART all the time. Or maybe just me. And the other people who take 24th Street BART all the time. ANYWAY.

It's interesting sociologically and anthropologically that there are these mostly- or totally-Latino bars sprinkled around the Mission, which makes sense because, of course, the Mission is (still) a largely Hispanic neighborhood, but which most of the white people who live in and around there never go into. (PLEASE don't leave an angry comment if you're a white person who hangs out in a Latino bar. Good for you, I believe you, etc. Just making a generalization.)

SO in the interest of seeing what the deal is, we headed into Carlo's Bar. Being a Wednesday night at 8:00, it was pretty empty. As expected, we were the only non-Hispanic people in there. Everyone stared at us. Not in a mean way. Or maybe in a mean way; I don't know. There was very loud Mexican music playing. I'm sure there's a term for the specific kind of music but I don't know what it is. There were three female bartenders, which seemed odd because there were about 8 customers. They all rushed over to us and started speaking very rapid Spanish. We said "Tecate" and got some Tecates. They switched to English, sort of.

Like I said, about 8 people. Couple of guys playing pool. One M/F couple dancing energetically to the music. At this point, we're just soaking it all in when the guy next to me strikes up a conversation, sort of. Jesús, as it turns out, is from Mexico and is EXTREMELY FRIENDLY. Also a little drunk. I could understand about two out of every 20 words so I nodded and smiled a lot. He introduced himself to all of us and proceeded to say, I think, that he likes San Francisco a lot. I might have accidentally told him I was from Mexico. I'm not sure. Jesús works at a very well-known Indian restaurant, so if you've had Tandoori chicken in the Mission in the last two years, chances are Jesús has cooked for you.

We would have stayed for another beer but here's the thing. Everyone was incredibly friendly and it was fun and everything but I was cornered and, frankly, Jesús would not shut up and it's kind of awkward to try and have a conversation with someone when you can't really understand a word they're saying. Also, his breath was deadly, I'm not joking. So we had to take our leave.

I know what you thought when you saw Dirty Thieves in the title of this post: How could TK have never been to Dirty Thieves? Either that or "Ugh, I'm not reading this bullshit," one of the two. Anyway, I went there a few times when it was Treat Street, but I haven't been since it became Dirty Thieves. Anyway, perfectly fine bar. I bet it gets seriously hipstered up on weekends. Just saying. Interestingly, there was a M/F couple dancing here, too! Is there a new Dance Dance Revolution I don't know about? So it's got booths and a pool table and bathrooms and an Internet jukebox and blah blah blah it's fine.

Monday, December 7, 2009

More on the hipster issue; features catchy song!!!

Looks like the hating hipsters thing is nationwide:

A long time ago I used to live in Richmond, where this guy is singing about. There's a college there, VCU, known for its art school. Also it's cheap and pretty flat (i.e., easy to get around on bike). It also had some good bars and some great local music. I don't know if it still does, but mix all that shit together and it's like Hipster Bait.

[Courtesy of this guy's Tumblr.]

Then I moved to Provo and was immediately given a $500 gift certificate to Crate and Barrel

Oh, fascinating, it's yet another Let's-Move-To-Oregon-And-Rediscover-Joy-in-Life article:

For at least a couple of years now, my wife and I have been rehearsing a break-up conversation with the Bay Area. As much as we love it here, we're just not sure if it will ever work out.

A lot of our uncertainty revolves around money, and our realization that we can't afford to buy a home here. That fact, rightly or wrongly, has become a touchstone for other uncertainties -- about finding a neighborhood we can stay in for the long term; about having good school options for our two-year-old daughter; about making enough money to afford the high cost of living without giving all of our waking hours over to work.
Go. Please. Quit whining and just go. God, stop talking about it and move. Jesus. You are boring the fuck out of me.

"I probably worked 10 to 12 hours a day in San Francisco," Lynch says. "Now it's probably closer to 6 to 8. But I do a broader range of things."

Like playing the French horn in the local symphony, for example. He was a serious musician through college, but he says "that aspect of my life was kind of shut down when I was in career mode for 15 years ... One of the first things I did (when we moved to Bend) was I got my horn back out."

Also, my hair went from gray back to brown, I lost 40 pounds, my dog started speaking perfect Mandarin, I can now make delicious crepes, blah fucking blah. These stories are all perfectly predictable and always the same. I left the Bay Area and discovered perfect happiness!

Look, the city is not for everyone. There are a lot of downsides. But I am so fucking tired of hearing yuppies whine about how they just can't make it here any more. FINE. GO. Just shut the fuck up about it.

P.S. French horns work in SF too. I'm almost positive.

P.P.S. We were talking about going to Maui for New Year's Eve, but I just checked and flights are around $900 R/T PER PERSON. Fuck.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Also, repeated listenings of "Fairtytale of New York" were involved

OK, so the tree is up and decorated. It all went down last night. It involved 4 people, 2 dogs, 8 bottles of wine, a bottle of prosecco, most of a 6-pack, some Jameson, some bruschetta, chorizo and goat cheese in phyllo, ground lamb toastettes, the "Glee" soundtrack, "Don't Stop Believin'" at top volume, several trips to the store, some heart-to-heart conversations, that kind of thing.

I found a piece of paper this morning with this written on it:

"Everybody's getting sick right now."

"That's what happens when you fuck a girl from Brazil."

Honestly? I have no idea.

Friday, December 4, 2009

The crazy is strong in this one

Arlington is apparently a town in Tennessee. It is "rich in history and heritage in the midst of vibrant growth." It is also rich in BATSHIT FUCKING CRAZY. Take it away, Memphis Commercial Appeal:

In the opinion of Arlington Mayor Russell Wiseman, President Barack Obama's speech on Tuesday night on the war in Afghanistan was deliberately timed to block the Christian message of the "Peanuts" television Christmas special.

Wait, what? Obama timed his speech so people couldn't see the Peanuts Christmas special? No, no, no, Commercial Appeal. You are making that shit up. He didn't really say that. Let's check his Facebook post just to make sure.

"Ok, so, this is total crap, we sit the kids down to watch 'The Charlie Brown Christmas Special' and our muslim president is there, what a load.....try to convince me that wasn't done on purpose."

Oh dear. Now we have to try to convince Russell Wiseman that the President did not time an important policy speech about an ongoing war to deprive Russell Wiseman's family of the opportunity to watch the Peanuts Christmas special. Have you noticed that Obama has not answered these charges yet!!??!!? Very damning. Very damning indeed.

For Russell Wiseman's benefit, and the benefit of all other Interested Parties, I have compiled a short list of other things Obama has done that you may not be aware of:

1. Caused mosquitos to bite Russell Wiseman/other residents of Arlington/your children/you
2. Raised price of 20 oz. Diet Coke at 7-11 near Russell Wiseman's house from $1.35 to $1.50.
3. Borrowed Russell Wiseman's weedeater last summer; never gave it back; probably still in White House garage.
4. Dried out Russell Wiseman's Thanksgiving turkey during cooking process; made it resultingly unpalatable.
5. Injured Eagles' DeSean Jackson, resulting in damaging loss to Russell Wiseman's fantasy football team.
6. Unfriended Russell Wiseman; he knows why.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Melt the pounds, and sadness, away with the TK Diet

Imagine my dismay when I stepped upon the scale after returning from Thanksgiving break and found that I had ballooned to an unsavory 205 pounds. Now, I'm 6'4" tall, so it's not like I'm getting mistaken for Chris Farley (plus, I'm not dead, so there's that), but I like to keep things in the 190 to 200 range. My lanky frame drives the ladies wild. Or something.

So I'm on the TK Diet. Now, let me warn you, the TK Diet is not for everyone. Actually, it's never been medically evaluated, and from what I can tell, it's probably extremely unsafe for anyone except me. So don't try this at home.

Here's how it works: I figure I need to cut my intake to about 2400 calories a day to become de-fatified. It's actually kind of surprising how easy this is. First, let's get the eating part out of the way. Have a sandwich and a Lean Cuisine and a lot of cucumber and blah blah blah you're only up to like 800 calories. I don't really care so much about the food. That leaves 1600 calories for what's important:


Now, you can just forget Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (175 cal). God forbid you have a Flying Dog Double Dog Pale Ale (292 fucking calories! Jesus!). We're all about getting the most per calorie we can.

I guess you could go with Michelob Ultra (94) but I had 4 of them last night and they taste like ass. Miller Lite has 96, but come the fuck on. We're not drinking that.

No, in the end I'll spend the extra 50 calories a can and stick with good old PBR (153). Cheap, reliable, dependable.

Or I guess you could have 22 shots of Jameson instead (70 cal). THAT'S LIVIN' RIGHT THERE.

(Practitioners of the TK Diet, you will find this site and this site extremely helpful.)

How funny is it that has a handy-dandy alcohol calorie calculator right there on the site? THANKS, COLLEGE DRINKING PREVENTION!!! Now I can get shitfaced without getting fat! You guys rule.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

What does Obama want?

Moms to go back to school, apparently. And to make school longer. And have more of it. And to have it year round. It's weird, but I never knew that Obama was so fascinated by education and/or the length and intensity of the school year. And Moms.

He also wants to change the national anthem and shut down Fox News. DUH.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The most awesomest 3-D animation recreation of the Tiger Woods thing you will see today

You have to watch the whole thing. It's only a minute and 36 seconds, relax. Why can't American TV be more like this?

I love the thought bubble over her head at about :57. WHORE!

Srsly, Tiger wouldn't be caught dead in a rugby shirt like that. When did this accident happen, 1986?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

These are the actual words I said upon leaving the theater after seeing "New Moon"

"Well, that wasn't the worst movie I've ever seen."

And it wasn't. But man, oh, man, was it ever BORING. The visuals were nice and there was some pretty scenery, but watching Kristen Stewart mope around the Pacific Northwest for 2 hours isn't anyone's idea of fun. Why would a good-looking, powerful vampire and a totally ripped werewolf with a protruding brow both be obessed with a chick whose only facial expression is that same look I get when they say we're out of wine and it's past 2 am? I don't get it. But if you're a parent worried about what your kids are watching, this movie is a concern-free zone. There are racier Family Circus panels.

That made me think - what is the worst movie I ever saw? That's a tough one, because I usually stop watching something as soon as I know it's bad. I yanked the headphones out of the seat about 20 minutes into "Four Christmases" on a plane, and I've walked out of movies before, but it's been a while.

No, the worst movie I can recall seeing in the past, say, 20 years, is the remake of "The Stepford Wives," with Nicole Kidman and Matthew Broderick and a bunch of other people who wish they weren't there. What a boring, pointless, relentlessly unfunny piece of shit. I actually watched this until the end because I couldn't believe how bad it was.

(Looking at the Rotten Tomatoes page for the movie (linked above), I note that the reviewer from "Christianity Today" thought it was "actually fairly funny," which is just sad and what it says about Christians I don't know.)

We're going to see "Fantastic Mr. Fox" today. We've got nowhere to go but up.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Movie reviewers just can't help themselves

All actual headlines:

Ruff going with these "Dogs"

No new tricks for "Old Dogs"

"Old Dogs" proves a mangy mongrel

"Old Dogs" definitely not best of show

"Old Dogs" a cinematic bowser

"Old Dogs" digs up a tired plot that should have stayed buried

You gotta like the Winnipeg Free Press for not even trying with:

Try walking the dog instead of going to this one

Oh, Winnipeg Free Press.

What is it with film reviewers that they just cannot stop themselves from the stupidest, most cliche-prone headlines? Thank God the rest of the paper's not like that, or we'd have shit like:

Iraq, You break: Behind the 8-ball

Global warming makes country hot

Chain Chain Cheney of fools

Health care bill calls in sick

Biden his time

Republicans ? Republican'ts!

We went to Waffle House.

Certain members of our party - chiefly those who had grown up in California and Ireland - had never been to a Waffle House, if you can imagine, so we set out to fix that. Waffle House is one of those things that's maybe better through the misty gauze of remembrance than in actuality, but the food did have calories, I'll say that.

Here in this crappy cell-phone pic we see some of the WH product, like the eponymous waffle, which is round and sort of tasteless, accompanied by its Vat O Syrup. The thing to the right of the Vat is hash browns with a slice of American cheese melted on top, to what end, I'm not sure. It's diner food, what are you gonna do. When did this turn into a food blog anyway. What.

(P.S. I posted this same pic on Twitter via Twitpic yesterday and it never showed up and I've got my team working on whether it's Twitter's error or mine so if it showed up for you and you saw this already, mea culpa.)

Anyway, our waitress was an awesome artifact named Tammy who looked like the human incarnation of a pack of Benson and Hedges 100s and provided better service than you'll get at any of your hoity-toity joints with a tuna tartare tower. Hats off to you, Tammy.

(P.P.S. There's a Waffle House Museum? Awesome. ROAD TRIP!!!!)

Then last night we played Taboo and drank more wine and now I'm kind of ready to spend a quiet evening not drinking instead of drinking. Per Dad's instructions, I have to go find pole beans now. THANKSGIVING IS HARD.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Believe it or not, not everything is aided by the addition of barbeque sauce

Thanks to the tender mercies of Continental Airlines (recommended, BTW, as they are my new go-to airline and you can just suck it, American, I break with thee) The Wife and I were flung across This Great Nation and alighted last night in the ancestral homeland in order to engage in some Thanksgiving. Bad economy? You wouldn't know it from the incredible volume of people squeezed behind a tray table or thronging the halls at La Aeropeurta.

ANYWAY, The Sister and her bf picked us up and off we went to what turned out to be a very odd dinner at a suburban non-chain restaurant Who Shall Not Be Named. Now, this restaurant clearly aspires to a higher level than your TJ McGillicuddy's or your Rudy's A Place for Steaks or whatever. And it's actually not that bad. But there are a few things that just throw you off a little. EXAMPLE I got the fresh (allegedly) dayboat scallops. They were actually expertly seared and seasoned perfectly. Delicious. The accompanying risotto was good, not great, but perfectly acceptable. But ringing the scallops and risotto was a band of barbeque sauce circling the plate. What what? GUY FIERI, ARE YOU BACK THERE? Srsly, WTF with the BBQ sauce, people? Very odd. Once I realized what it was, I was able to avoid, but that was quite an uncomfortable first bite, let me tells you. I'm not even going to get into the wine service, but just for future reference, it's not conventional to open the bottle and then fill everyone's glasses up to the rim.

Then we went back to the house and polished off 4 bottles of wine. HELLO, MONDAY!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Regretsy gets inevitable book deal, and I can't get Hulu to work on my computer.

You know Regretsy, the very funny site that makes fun of really, really bad crafts people sell on Etsy? You know what I'm talking about.

I knew it was just a matter of time before they got a book deal, because the idea is great and the person who writes the captions (under the pseudonym "Helen Killer") is is brilliant. It's LOL funny.

Come to find out today that yes, they did get their book deal, and that Helen Killer is actually April Winchell, whose name I have heard before but didn't really know who she was. As it turns out, she's Internet famous and I guess real life famous too.

Now, I have nothing but good wishes for April Winchell, but there was some tiny part of me or maybe big part of me that was hoping that Helen Killer was actually just a very funny 23-year-old administrative assistant from Minneapolis and not someone who was already semi-famous. I don't know why.

Now, let's move on to getting Ugliest Tattoos and Item Not as Described book deals. Not just because they're written by friends of mine! Because they deserve it.

(Special 40goingon28 thanks to Tami for Twittering about this.)

In a completely unrelated story, are you watching The League yet? It might be the funniest show on television. I know what you're saying: "But TK, how could a show about fantasy football be funny?" Shut up. You whine too much. Go watch it on Hulu or something. If that works. I can never get Hulu to work for me.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

France cheated.

I have prepared an enhanced photograph to illustrate:

"I will be honest, it was a hand ball. But I'm not the ref," Henry said. "I played it. The ref allowed it. That's a question you should ask him."

Ireland got screwed.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

So this reality show guy wrote to me sort of

This is kinda funny. I few days ago I Twittered that Jennifer is probably my favorite patient on Sex Rehab with Dr. Drew and then promptly forgot about it probably because I was drunk or something. So, amazingly enough, Duncan Roy, who's a director or something and another one of the patients on Sex Rehab, sent me an "@" reply not long after, saying "list us in order."

Now, as you know, if you're not following the person who @'d you, you don't see the message in your regular Twitter feed and so I didn't see it until last night when I was looking through @ messages to see what I missed. What I missed was this bizarre postmodern event of a real person on a reality show sending me a personal message based on a Thing I Said on The Internet. Weird!

Let's deal with one thing up front. Yes, I watch "Sex Rehab with Dr. Drew" because (1) it involves sex, (2) it involves people - some of them very attractive women - whose problem is they have too much sex, so you can see the interest, (3) Dr. Drew is kind of my homie and I like the little frowny face he does when someone says something like "I like to shoot meth into my eyeballs" or "I once fucked a rhino because some Japanese businessmen paid me $4,000 to do it and tape it," (4) I've been a fan of his whole Rehab series, just like I'm a HUGE fan of Intervention, and that's because it lets me go "Hey, I may do some drinkin', but I'm nowhere NEAR as bad as that guy," and (5) SEX REHAB! C'mon, you're wondering why I'd watch a show called "Sex Rehab"? Get your head screwed on straight.

(I guess I should drop a brief explanatory parenthetical here - basically, the idea of the show is that they round up 8 semi-celebrities who are sex addicts and then follow them through treatment. If the idea of watching group therapy sounds like a bore, it's not. NO SPOILERS but there's a total trainwreck on there who is kinda making the show.)

ANYWAY, Duncan Roy, or anyone else who's read this far, here you go:

1. Jennifer, because she seems cool. She used to be a porn star or something and she just seems like she'd call bullshit on something that was bullshit. She has a blog too.

2. Duncan Roy AND I SWEAR I'M NOT JUST PUTTING HIM IN SECOND TO KISS HIS ASS OR ANYTHING, but it seems like he views the whole thing with kind of a jaundiced eye. He's like who the audience would be supposed to identify with if this were a movie. (Side note - if this were a movie, I'd totally cast Christina Ricci as Jennifer. Go look at her pics and you'll see what I mean.)

3. Nicole Narain, because she's hot and said that she masturbated 18 times in one day once. I probably couldn't do 18 push-ups in a day! Wow.

4. Phil Varone because he was the drummer for Skid Row and you know you'd have a fucking blast going out in L.A. one night with him.

5. Amber Smith (who was also on Celebrity Rehab for her pill problem) is unobjectionable. She really doesn't seem all that fucked up. I think she's doing these shows just to keep her face out there.

6. Kendra Jade Rossi is like your crazy ex-girlfriend who kept a lock of your hair and still sends you fucked-up letters with red construction paper hearts all torn up that fall out when you open the letter.

7. Jamie Lovett is apparently some kind of surfer or something but he literally hasn't been on camera more than 5 minutes so far so who knows?

8. Kari Ann Peniche. Nothing I can say will do her justice. You just have to watch.

P.S. Jesus, this is a long blog post about a reality TV show. What if I used my powers for good?

P.P.S. Third post in a row with the "Famous people" and "TV" tags. I gotta get out more.

Maybe I have to start watching "The Hills" now

From The Sister (punctuation and capitalization in the original):

"which reminds me. i was watching the hills last night (LOVE) and spencer and heidi have been going to church. so heidi said grace before dinner, and her blessing was something along the lines of, 'god, please bless this food, bless our house, thanks for my husband and thanks for my outfit.' total LOL. it's an LA grace! thanks for my outfit!"

If the rest of this show is like this, it sounds like it might be awesome.

(P.S. Second post today with the "Famous people" and "TV" tags.)

Your Bay Area Forecast

Yeah, I'm a Mornings on 2 man. Obvs., it was much better when Frank had the conn, but I understood when he got the call and moved up to the captain's chair when Dennis retired. He deserved it. Over time, I've gotten used to Dave, as difficult as it's been. But, as any Mornings on 2 watcher knows, Steve Paulson is really the star of the show.

His panache whilst delivering the weather! His easy needling of poor Sal Castaneda! Steve is totally The Man.

(Speaking of Sal, is it just me or does he seem tired these days? I see him occasionally doing some spot reporting on the flagship News at 6, so maybe he's burning the candle at both ends a little. From what I heard around town, he used to really burn it at both ends, if you know what I mean. Nudge nudge.)

ANYWAY, this morning something was fucked up over at KTVU ("Looks like the weekend crew's working!" my Dad used to cheerfully say anytime something went wrong on the local news) and there was no sound. Tori was yammering away, but no sound! Frustrating!

So I switched over to lovable underdog KRON 4. KRON used to be the local NBC franchise but then something went wrong and now they mostly show reruns of Dr. Phil and infomercials. It's like a bunch of kids decided to open a TV station in the garage. Charming!

(Don't even get me started on Gary Radnich. He's sort of the sports anchor over there and he usually seems drunk and constantly makes jokes about how KRON is tanking, which it is. I think he's hilarious but YMMV.)

So I'm sorry Steve Paulson but we're breaking up because doing the weather over on Sinking Ship KRON is Evelyn Taft. EVELYN TAFT, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN!

RAWR TIMES A MILLION. "Evelyn Taft grew up speaking Russian with her Moscow-born parents. As a young girl, she remembers learning English by watching 'The Weather Channel.'" Oh, I bet you did, Evelyn Taft. That's how I learned English too! Now say "It's going to be a wet morning" again. Oh yes.

Follow Ev (that's what Mark Damon called her! Ev!) on Twitter here. And be sure to read the comments on the KRON website that follow her bio! So wonderfully creepy!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Attention single ladies

Here is a service you may want to avail yourselves of:

(I know I've been big on the Internet advertising these past few days, but you gotta go with what's put in front of you.)

"New acquaintance," huh? How coy! Why not just say "That guy at the bar who bought me 3 key lime martinis but who sort of looks like Richard Ramirez and now won't leave me alone and wants to know if I'd like to go camping and WTF we just met like an hour and a half ago!"

So the idea, I gather, with MyNumber is that they supply you with a fake number that forwards calls to your phone and then you can ditch the number when Mr. Pushy keeps calling every 20 minutes or whatever. Genius!

Speaking of fake numbers, did anyone ever use the Rejection Line? The idea is, there's a certain number you give out and when your unwitting recipient calls it, they get a recording telling them they've been DUPED and the person doesn't really want to talk to them. Sounds like a good idea, but I wonder if it's one of those things that's more fun to talk about than actually put into practice and that no one ever uses.

In other Single Lady news, Julian Casablancas is at the Regency Ballroom tonight. Just sayin'. He likes the ladies. And you're unlikely to get shot after a Julian Casablancas show. SHOT BY LOVE MAYBE. Ugh. That was terrible. Just stop.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Here's a sign: You are capable of a workplace homicide

Collected today on Yahoo's front page:

Haha. I LOVE IT. Dude is staring at her with MURDEROUS RAGE. "Oh my God, that bitch is about to say something. Here it comes. She's about to open her fucking mouth and let some inanity about the weather or some teabagger socialism shit out of that stupid-hole. And then I will jump across this table and fucking wring her fucking neck. Go on, bitch. Make my day."

Happy Friday, everyone! Did you see that Niners-Bears game last night? Christ, I've been to more entertaining middle school junior varsity games. Hey, Jay Cutler: your guys are wearing WHITE. FYI.

Things I'm liking today:

1. Taking BART to work

2. This Fresh Air about the Yakuza in Japan. Man, they even build better gangsters in Japan. Motherfuckers so badass they got business cards. I want to read this guy's book.

3. Generic's blog. Dude gets it.

4. Sons of Anarchy. Wait, that wasn't the season finale? Why was it 90 minutes then?

5. Max Silvestri's Top Chef recaps. One of the funniest things on the Internet.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Joan literally wears the pants around here: Mad Men ep 13

Oh, fuck. That’s it? The season’s over?

What a fucking awesome episode. So Betty’s off to Reno with her Old to break up with D-Drape and Begin Her New Life. I would recommend John Ascuaga’s Nugget, where midweek Tower rooms start at just $49! Anyway, Betty continues her quest for Mother of the Year by leaving her other 2 kids with the maid while she jets off to Nevada to get a D-I-V-O-R-C-E. “Yes, New Bobby, as a matter of fact, it IS your fault.” Those kids are going to be so fucked up. They’ll have their own series when they start tripping balls and killing the pigs in 1968.

Connie Hilton is back for what is hopefully his last hurrah, to tell Don that Ster-Coop is being sold. Now can we please end this faux-father plot? We all get the hamhanded symbolism, but it never really rang true. Connie and the Flashbacks can all go bother some other show. That would be awesome if the mule-kicking-the-head flashback just popped up in “According to Jim” without any explanation or context.

The main part of this episode, of course, was the FUCKING AWESOME A-Team Assembling the Crack Squad sequence, in which Don and Roger and Bert recruit all the top talent for the new firm. Oh, and Pete. What a tool. If he didn’t have Clearasil, he’d be selling Bibles out of the trunk of an Oldsmobile in Kansas. Anyway, BEST SCENE maybe this whole season: all the guys in the closed semi-dark office, and in walks MOTHERFUCKING JOAN and she’s all “That’s right, bitches. I’m here to whip this sorry shit into some fucking shape” and OF COURSE she knows where everything is and then Don kicks in the door of the Fart Department (what was up with that, anyway) like he’s fucking Serpico and now they are going to rule advertising like some badass Advertising Super Friends and every week we’ll have a Carousel pitch and a guy can at least hope, right?

I’m kinda psyched that Lane Pryce is coming along. He’s got the potential to be more than the pinky-up Masterpiece Theatre guy that he was earlier. Lane totally knows that he has to bust out to make a fresh start. He’s gonna end up dumping that stick-up-her-ass wife and maybe become an Ascot Gay with a place on Fire Island.

Anyway, it’s all set up for next season now. I’m expecting the scene where some doofus from the old Sterling Cooper is giving some hackneyed pitch and the door flies open and Don walks in and goes “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke” and everybody passes out from excitement.

When does Friday Night Lights start?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Bar Night: Tempest, Showdown, Rickhouse

Any pussy can go to one bar. It takes a fucking VILLAGE to go to three. By "village" I mean me, Olu and Jason. If your village was an AA meeting.

First stop: Tempest, on Natoma between 5th and 6th, behind the flailing Chronicle. Nice bar! A little brightly lit, but better to see the jackoffs taking up three tables. Oh, sorry, I don't mean to be salty. We had a good time. PBR and shot of Jim Beam, $5 all the time. What could be wrong with that? Nothing, that's what. Jason came and put an old Mark Twain folio on the bar and everybody gave us mad props after that. Maybe it was the Spongebob action figure he got from Burger King that he also put on the bar, I'm not sure. You can smoke in the Tempest, but only BEHIND THE RED LINE, like a painted line on the floor confers immunity from lung cancer. Pool table. Japanese chick w/ passport. Good bar.

Second stop: Showdown, 6th Street near Mission, in the old Arrow Bar space. No immediately apparent website, which makes sense, because it's only a notch up from Arrow Bar, like malaria is a notch up from H1N1. Here's what you need to know about Showdown: Jason saw a guy there who he has personally 86'd for life from the Gold Cane. 86'D FOR LIFE FROM THE GOLD CANE. That basically means you built a meth lab on the bar at the Gold Cane and then refused to sell any meth to the bartender. Not Jason. He doesn't do that. Anyway, Guy 86'd From Gold Cane was basically fucking this wasted methy blonde chick at the bar. Gross. When they realized they couldn't consummate their affair for the ages right there, they ducked over to the men's room. Romantic. Next to the men's room door, there was some refrigerator box or something. I don't know why. They shimmy in between the door and the box and BOOM I see the chick's tennis shoe with a foot still in it flop up on top of the box. Olu had to go to the bathroom. I said "Not right now." Shoe comes down, bathroom door opens and closes. Horrifying. No stars.

Third stop: Rickhouse, everybody's new hotness with your artisanal cocktails and blah blah blah. We begrudgingly liked it. Begrudging because there were a lot of striped shirts and FiDi types crowding up the place and making it harder for me to get my drink, which was bourbon, Punt E Mes, infused pixie dust, and tears, with ice cubes carved out of a glacier in Norway. It was OK. I love the interior, but it's all very carefully crafted to look Bar-y, like Pirates of the Carribean for drunks.

Then we took a cab to the 500 Club and had beers like normal people.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I'm picturing this blog as a miniseries. Or maybe a feature film. With George Clooney. Or somebody.

Yes, yes, we all know that Hollywood is utterly bereft of ideas and just about any execrable refuse has a chance of being made. But today's news is stunning, even by the very low standards The Show Business has created for itself:

Not only is Texts From Last Night being made into a TV series (on Fox, natch); so is Shit My Dad Says.

Let's take the last one first. SMDS isn't even a website or a blog; it's a fucking Twitter stream. It's like making the ESPN crawl at the bottom of the screen into a series.

(HANG THE FUCK ON, I just got an idea and I have to call my agent. We'll cast Gilbert Gottfried as "PPD RAIN" and Jenn Sterger as the Florida State - Florida score).

Anyway, SMDS makes sense on CBS, where it's apparently found a home, since CBS is watched pretty much exclusively by 72-year-olds, like the eponymous "Dad." Now, I will be the first to admit that the SMDS stream is chuckle-inducing, but you can't just trot Jerry Adler out onto a set and have him read a fucking Twitter stream. Or maybe you can; I don't know. I'm not in TV.

Similarly, I guess, Texts From Last Night, what? It's a collection of made-up 140-character anecdotes about nights frat boys wish they had had. What's the series?

SETH GREEN enters stage left.

SETH GREEN: I thought it was weird that her dad told me to finish and get out after he walked in on us. I like him.

LEAH REMINI: Just caught grandpa beating off in the living room!


Oh, God, you know what? Now that I see that typed out, it's not so different from any other FOX sitcom.

Monday, November 9, 2009

A lot of people don't remember this, but Robin Williams won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor

Now he's in POS movies with John Travolta.

I didn't forget about RV. I guess everyone's got billz to pay.

Monday Morning Staff Meeting

OK, find a seat. Everybody here? We have a lot of ground to cover.

Friday, The Wife and I had dinner at Pi Bar, the newish pizza & beer place on Valencia. Looks like reviews are decidedly mixed, but fuck those douches on Yelp. If I have to hear about how "Wah wah wah there's no good pizza in San Francisco" one more time I'm gonna, I don't know, I'm gonna say something unpleasant or something. I've had pizza in NYC and it's not all that great. Fuck that shit.

Sorry. I'm fine. ANYWAY, Pi Bar has been found by the Urban Hipster Families of the Mission Dist. and by the olds. The pizza was good - not great, good - but the beer was nice (a limited edition Anchor Humming Ale (which I don't know what "humming ale" means but it sounds vaguely dirty)) and the service (we sat at the bar) was outstanding. Props to you, Bartender Girl, for keeping us happy and well-served. You rocked.

Then we decamped to the nearby Dovre Club whereupon we discovered actual Irish guys in an Irish bar. They were shitfaced and hanging with some Latinos and it looked like they had achieved some diplomatic coup because they were hugging a lot and buying each other beers. Ahhh, the beauty of international understanding.

Saturday after band practice we went to Mad Dog and then to Debaser at the Knockout pretty much because they were having a Pixies cover band and who doesn't like a good Pixies cover band? But FUCK I forgot how fucking crowded it gets and I don't like crowds so much any more and so we had to leave.

Last night, of course, was the Mad Men finale, more on which topic later. I was told to wait til Tuesday to post my thoughts on said topic. I will say this: great episode.

That's it. That's enough. Back with actual interesting content later this week.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Kennedy's dead, and I don't feel so good myself: Mad Men ep 12

WHOOPS! SPOILER IN TITLE. But fuck, if you didn't see this coming, maybe you didn't realize that Sam and Diane were going to get together on "Cheers" and you deserve whatever ugliness life has in store for you.

You know a show has got your attention when the Kennedy assassination is only the SECOND biggest thing that's happened this season. I thought they handled it perfectly. We first find out when Pete is talking to the TV Guy with Glasses Whose Name Escapes Me and BAM it's going on in the background and they don't even notice it. But the coolest scene in the whole show was Don standing in the office and all the phones are going off because everyone's gathered around the TV and Don's all "WTF? Is it Celebrity Jeopardy again?"

Incidentally, I guess the Aqua Net ad with the 4 people in the convertible and one of them with her hair blown backwards isn't going to fly any more.

Peggy, you are a dirty, dirty girl! Sneaking around with Duck this whole time. Even her rommate (who I thought got the racquet for a while) is all "Hey hobag, how's about you and Gramps take your action back to the Old Folks Home instead of over here because his English Leather is starting to bug me." Anyway, Pegs sets up a nooner with the Oldster (incidentally, Duck is so smooth - "Come on, creative. Be creative.") and she goes over to his hotel room and he's unplugging the TV and basically like whistling and going "Nothing to see here!" Time for another go around. Ew.

Time for Roger's daughter's wedding. WHOOPS, SHOULD HAVE PLANNED THAT FOR A DIFFERENT DAY, like after one of the days when Kennedy didn't get shot. No biggie, though - we can have the prime rib AND the filet of sole! Sweet. Jane's going to help out and drink all the extra wine. Oh, Jane.

Isn't it good to see Roger get so much screen time? He gives a kickass speech, then carries Spring Break Jane into the bedroom and tosses her on the bed and who does he call? JOANIE, THAT'S RIGHT. He's all "What's up?" and she's all "LOL U R MARRIED. Oh, hang on, this motherfucker's waking up again and I'm almost out of vases." But you know those two are going to start fooling around again and THANK GOD I say because they were awesome.

Everybody is talking Don and Betty to death and I don't have a lot to add except blah blah blah I'm kind of sick of the whole thing and I sort of wanted something punchier after the Big Reveal last week. Like, she should totally blackmail him or something! I would be like "So, Dick - oops, I mean Don" ALL THE TIME just to bug him. ANYWAY, Bets and that old guy (TANGENT - I just realized that maybe I love this show because old guys are always getting the young hotties [EMBEDDED TANGENT - Maybe Peggy isn't that hot but still]) Henry have a little meet and greet and he's trying to get her to leave Don and come with him and she's not so sure which is a good thing because Henry's kind of a stiff and according to my female advisors, any sane woman would be rubbing herself on Jon Hamm like a panda on a tree.

Normal woman and Jon Hamm (dramatization)

ANYWAY, this week is the season finale, guys! WTF?! Didn't it just start? Then we have to wait like 2 months for Lost and Friday Night Lights. Our God is a cruel God.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Please pardon this interruption in our service

We hope to resume normal programming soon.

I know all y'alls want your Mad Men update (well, except for that commenter on Eye on Blogs who said my update "sucked" - you, Sir, may get your updates elsewhere) but I'm stuck in this interminably boring work thing in Long Beach and don't have time right now. I'll give you the Cliffs Notes:

1. Kennedy got shot
2. Roger's daughter's wedding sucked.

Sorry. I'm really sorry.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The good kind of mystery meat

In San Francisco we're all interested in food and wine and we're always going on and on about farmer's markets and pinot noir and heirloom tomatoes and sustainably raised beef and so an event like the Mystery Dinner at Maverick is the perfect way to let us all show off and put us in our place at the same time.

The idea behind the Mystery Dinner (held on Halloween night, natch) is that you get 3 courses with wine pairings and you have to guess as many elements of each course as you can, along with the kind of wine. Sounds simple, right? Wrong.

(Before I go on, let me just throw in a little plug here for Maverick, a place we've been many times and which is truly one of the great, maybe a little underrated, restaurants in SF).

So you wanna know how badly I did? Bad. Let's review.

First course: Some kind of salad with a poached egg on top and some kind of greens and some other stuff.

What I guessed: Poached egg (duh), raddichio (total guess - I'm not even sure what raddichio is), rye croutons, and plantain.

What it actually was: Poached egg (yay!), rye croutons (yay!), red stem spinach, Maverick pancetta, roasted apples, apple cider vinagrette. There was pancetta in there? I didn't see any pancetta. And how do you mistake apple for plantain? I'm an idiot.

Wine guess: Sauvignon blanc.
Actual wine: Sauvignon blanc. I know my sauvignon blanc.

Second course: It was grilled fish.

What I guessed: My first thought was something like swordfish or tuna, but it wasn't tuna and didn't seem firm enough to be swordfish. So I guess grilled halibut, on risotto, with sprouts, and chili sauce.

What it actually was: Grilled swordfish. Damn! With shaved brussels sprouts (half-credit), crispy chanterelles (?), and sweet and sour sauce. It was delicious. They gave me credit for the sauce, which was nice.

Wine guess: Unoaked chardonnay.
Actual wine: Grenache blanc. Oh, sure, like I had a chance of getting that. I didn't even know there was such a thing as grenache blanc until last night. It was good, though!

Dessert course: Some kind of custardy thing.

What I guessed: Mint panna cotta, with candied walnuts and red currants.

What it actually was: Meyer lemon panna cotta, with candied walnuts and huckleberry compote. I SWEAR TO GOD it tasted minty.

Wine guess: Gewurtztraminer. It was really sweet, what do I know.
Actual wine: Pinot blanc. Again, I had an approximately zero percent chance of getting this.

In the end, The Sister and her bf tied and there was tiebreaker and I think he won. The winner at every table got a bottle of wine! That's nice. Anyway, tons o' fun.

Then we went home and watched TV and went to bed. I don't feel the Halloween thing so much any more, plus I was up til about 4:30 a.m. on Friday night about which less said the better.

ANYWAY, I'm off to beautiful exciting downtown Long Beach tomorrow for work. So we'll see what they're up to down there. Later.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Other people San Francisco is a Sanctuary City for

1. Grown men with long, long ponytails
2. Damaged girls with Livejournals
3. Guys who collect vinyl
4. People from Iowa who pronounce Spanish words with a pronounced Spanish accent
5. Drunks
6. Ultimate frisbee players
7. 23-year-olds who wear sweatshirts with Greek letters on them unironically
8. Frank Chu
9. Dog owners who are obsessed with their dogs and treat their dogs like children and have birthday parties for them and stuff
10. Barista/artists
11. Waiter/punk band members
12. Administrative assistant/dominatrices
13. Pigeons. Pigeon feeders.
14. Bros with yellow labs named either “Marley” or “Kaya”
15. DJs (still)
16. Wine snobs
17. Beer snobs
18. Marijuana snobs
19. MST3K snobs
20. Illegal immigrants (Irish)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Andre Agassi, tweaker

Holy shit! In his new bio, Andre Agassi talks about how he used to use crystal meth. Check this shit out! ("Slim" is one of his assistants):

"Slim is stressed too ... He says, You want to get high with me? On what? Gack. What the hell's gack? Crystal meth. Why do they call it gack? Because that's the sound you make when you're high ... Make you feel like Superman, dude.

"As if they're coming out of someone else's mouth, I hear these words: You know what? F*** it. Yeah. Let's get high.

"Slim dumps a small pile of powder on the coffee table. He cuts it, snorts it. He cuts it again. I snort some. I ease back on the couch and consider the Rubicon I've just crossed.

"There is a moment of regret, followed by vast sadness. Then comes a tidal wave of euphoria that sweeps away every negative thought in my head. I've never felt so alive, so hopeful - and I've never felt such energy.

"I'm seized by a desperate desire to clean. I go tearing around my house, cleaning it from top to bottom. I dust the furniture. I scour the tub. I make the beds."

Haha. The stars - they're just like you and me! If you've ever known anyone who was on the meth, you'll recognize the cleaning instinct right away. One friend of mine had a roommate who liked the meth, and he'd wake up and find his roomie vacuuming away at 4:30 a.m. I know another guy who rearranged all his several hundred CDs by color - so the shelves looked like a giant VIBGYOR (or Roy G. Biv, if that's your pref).

Anyway, I don't know why the Agassi thing seems so surprising. Maybe because you tend to think of professional athletes and entertainers and stuff liking coke more than meth. It just seems weird, right?

Monday, October 26, 2009

Whoa, Don, have another Canadian Club. Mad Men ep 11.

So it’s finally here. The Big Showdown. So now where do we go? I mean, now that’s all out in the open and Betts knows, or is starting to know, the details of the Big Secret, how do they sustain the dramatic tension?

But enough about that. Let’s talk about Roger! Roger, as it turns out, has a complicated back story that includes an expat life in Paris in the 30’s with Annabel, who still looks pretty good at 50 or whatever age she is now. She dumped Roger! Maybe that’s why he’s such an asshole now. I mean, I love the guy and he always has the best lines on the show, but he’s an asshole, right? Anyway, she wants to get into the Roger business again and he turns her down. How come, Rog? Don’t tell me he’s gotten a sudden attack of the Faithfuls. Some guys don’t like drunk chicks. That’s what I heard, anyway. From no one, ever.

Hey, remember when the Drapers had a dog? What happened to him? Did he get the racquet?[*] You know who’s about to get the racquet? The Rape Doctor! That’s right, he’s got VIETNAM WAR CASUALTY basically tattooed on his face. Oh, you’ll be a surgeon, all right. A SURGEON OF DEATH. That doesn’t make any sense. Anyway, then Joan will finally be able to get back together with Roger. He just has to get rid of Current Wife, whatever her name is.

Hey, did anybody else think the animal focus group was awesome? “Oh, he seems to like this food! Cute! Good puppy HOLY FUCK WHAT ARE YOU DOING? WHY ARE YOU FEEDING A PONY TO MY DOG?!!! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAGGGGHHHHHH!!!!” I think they need to change the name after all.

ANYWAY. Anyone think Miss Farrell is just going to go gently into that good night? No way. She’s not done by a long shot. And it’s a good thing none of this is taking place today or Don’s cellie would have been BLOWING UP after the first 10 minutes he left her sitting in the car. Just imagine him having The Confrontation and Betts is all “I want answers, Don,” and just then his “My Prerogative” ringtone goes off and he’s all “Oh, shit, I gotta take this, hang on.” Speaking of which, I hate cell phones but I love having the Internet on me all the time.

[*] “Get the racquet” = “to suddenly and mysteriously disappear from a show with no explanation or acknowledgement.” Back in college, a bunch of us used to get together after lunch every day and watch “All My Children.” There was this minor character who was staying with Tad and just hanging around and not doing much. One day, he went up to the attic to get a tennis racquet and NEVER CAME BACK. Ergo, “getting the racquet.” I like to imagine that his moldy corpse is still up there in the attic, slowly decomposing in the Pine Valley heat.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Internet advertising has become disturbingly weird

Check out what I had to look at whilst I was trying to read up on the Times Square teen who doesn't know who she is or some shit like that:

WTFF??? It looks like new ideas for Enhanced Interrogation Techniques. I can hear Cheney breathing hard and clicking away somewhere out there.

Is the chick at the bottom giving head to a robot or what's going on there? If the Trick to WHITE teeth is to get deep-throated by a glowstick on the end of a vacuum cleaner attachment, I'll stick with the way I am, thanks. And if you can vanish cellulite by grabbing your thighs and making little flesh ridges, we're all going to save a lot of money. The Secret Snoring Solution, meanwhile, is to put on a fake Abraham Lincoln beard and hit yourself in the head with your fist.

Criminal FAIL

San Francisco Police Officer Recovering After Attack

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- A San Francisco police officer is recovering in the hospital after he was dragged by a suspected drunk driver Thursday night.

The incident began with a traffic stop on Clayton and Ashbury streets at about 2:30 am. Police say the driver grabbed the officer and pulled him partially through the window. He then continued driving slamming the officer up against parked cars until he fell off a couple of blocks away.

The suspect was taken into custody not far from the scene.

Now, as I understand it, when you're a criminal, the main idea is to GET AWAY from the police. My suggested strategy for a traffic stop - which, admittedly, is cobbled together from bad movies and old episodes of "Starsky and Hutch" - is to wait for the cop to get out of the cop car and start walking towards your car, then FLOOR IT and speed off. Then the cop looks momentarily stunned and runs back to his car to give chase. Usually his hat falls off.

The last thing you want is a cop THERE IN THE CAR WITH YOU. That makes you so much easier to arrest. So kindly refrain from PULLING TO COP INTO THE CAR. Moreover, once you start to leave, LET HIM GO. He's not going to aid your getaway at that point.

[UNRELATED STORY: As you can see, today's Random Flickr Image was obviously taken in London. It was part of a series entitled "London Day 1013." I'm not sure I understand the nomenclature. Does that mean you're on your 1,013th day in London? Christ, man, you've been there almost 3 years. You're a resident now. You can drop the sequential daily numbering. Just title it "London, My Home" or something like that.]

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Padma Lakshmi is 38!

Damn! I hope I look that good when I'm 38. Again.

And she has a semi-nude painting of herself over her bed in her NYC apartment!!!

And a swing in her living room!

I need to lie down.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Churchill rousing or Hitler rousing? Mad Men ep 10

Yeah, yeah, I know, Betty found Don’s Shoebox of Lies, and some shit is inevitably going to hit the fan because of it, but was anyone else surprised that Lois still works at Ster-Coop? Man, some places I’ve worked you could get fired for smiling at the boss, or not smiling at the boss, or not having sex with the boss, but apparently it’s cool to run over someone’s foot with a fucking lawnmower at the S to the C and we'll all go on like nothing happened!

Speaking of Lois, contrary to rumor, no, she is not Flo from the unbelievably annoying Progressive Insurance ads, but, as a matter of fact, the actress who troubles us with her Flo role, Stephanie Courtney, has been on Mad Men! And so the Great Circle closes.

That Miss Farrell. She trouble. So she's got a problem brother just like Cameron Diaz in "There's Something About Mary" and when she said "He has FITS," I thought it was like an acronym for something, like Family Intensive Trouble Syndrome but then my Show Partners told me no, it just meant "fits." So he's an epileptic. Whoops. ANYWAY, he's hanging around and just being a major cockblock for most of this episode and Don is finally like FINE I'll drive to you to fucking Nome Alaska if it gets you out of our hair. More on that in a sec.

Pornography in the 60's was very primitive and you had to whack it to B&W mockups of bra ads. Eww eww eww Paul. Gross. No wonder you lost your idea. You're busy salivating over the nightgown section of the Sears catalog. So hot....let me see your wrists, you dirty girl.

Then we find out the Brits are going to sell Ster-Coop but I don't care so much about that right now. I did like how Lane's wife was all "It's not's not even England." OH SCHNAP NEW YORK.

So, yeah, then Betty finds the keys to the secret drawer and this is pretty much the best thing that's happened all season because now she knows enough to be trouble. Now the tension's just gonna build and build until she springs it on him.

Now let's talk really quick about Don's R/T drive to Framingham. I was informed by one of my Show Partners, who is actually from MA, that we're talking about a 5-hour roundtrip. Subsequent Google mapping reveals that it's closer to 3, but with 1963 technology, who knows? Point being, it's at least a 6-hour, and maybe 10-hour drive, from Ossining to just outside Framingham where Don drops off the mysterious brother (who's going to end up dead, MARK MY WORDS). So how does he get back the same night? (Indeed, in time to bang Suzanne?) Doesn't make sense.

UNLESS. And I don't want to be hasty about this. UNLESS Don knows where there's a wormhole in the spacetime continuum. Now I'm just throwing that out there.

Monday, October 19, 2009

What I saw at the Treasure Island Music Festival on Saturday

1. A kid in one of those animal suits like the kid in Where the Wild Things Are wears, bouncing around, on E I guess.

2. A lot of drunk teenagers.

3. People in robot costumes being accosted and/or photographed by aforementioned drunk teenagers.

4. Zero beer lines. If every other festival could copy this feature, that would be great. Kthx.

5. About 15 percussionists on stage with Dan Deacon.

The Streets is pretty much the main reason I came. I think he did a pretty good job. The mix was a bit off at the beginning, but it got better. Now that I've seen him live, I'm starting to think that maybe it's harder to pull off his stuff live than I thought.

As you may know, Treasure Island is divided into two days - a more electronica-leaning day on Saturday, and a more rock day Sunday. We went to the rock day Sunday last year and had a wonderful time. This time, still fun (mostly thanks to the great company we were with) but just not the same.

Maybe it's because the crowd skewed a good 10 years younger, or maybe because I'm just more of a rock guy than an electronica guy, but I wouldn't go on Saturday again. I mean, the name of this blog is 40 going on 28, not 40 going on 17. I kept expecting Chris Hansen to pop up.

Mad Men recap tomorrow, maybe, unless I can get enough done this morning.