I visited the family this weekend and on a trip out with my mother, we bumped into this woman who lives next door to the house in which my late Grandfather used to live. She told my mother she had a package for her. It seems that the new owners of the house have decided to renovate, and removed the old gas range (classical midcentury design if there ever was such) in favour of new fixtures. SFW? I'll tell you SFW... they found postcards and letters which had fallen behind the oven. Among them is this gem... in keeping with my Great Aunt Gladys and my Grandmothers' bad taste. Click the thumbnail for larger version.
To every thing, turn, turn, turn. There was once a time at the evil empire when Ryan and I used to amuse ourselves when we had a free moment. One afternoon, we nearly pissed our pants over this gem which stays in our hearts and lexicon today. Bubb, we'se onna pour out a fo'ty on the curb for y'alls.
I feel like I'm repeating my sentiments about Rescue Me coming back (which wasn't borne out in practise. This season is meh.) but Sweet BJ and the Os! Weeds is coming back! And this time, it's for realz and for serious! Last season's cliffhanger featured a 3 way drug deal gone bad, a dead husband/DEA agent, a son on the run with purloined weed pulled over by Agrestic police, and another son on the run heading to "Pittsburgh" with a brilliantly batshit crazy Zooey Deschanel. That's about as cliffhangy as it gets. Well, I can reveal (having seen the first 3 episodes, which begin airing on Showtime on August 13 at 10 pm, that there is an even more gripping turn of events for each of the plot points listed previously. Things remain murky, but still twist and turn and move forward for these episodes. It's absolutely a top pick for this summer, running neck and neck with the equally twisty Big Love. Below is the promo for this year's season.
I love language, as you'll know from this post, but when I came across this prose, I had to show it off as a great example of WTF:
"With physical Mars now in earthy Taurus, as he receives a blast from Uranus the Awakener, you Goats are primed and ready for action."
Proofreading is your friend. People expect horoscopes to be kooky (I keep this on my iGoogle just for Esses and Gees) but this may be a bridge too far.
Sweet Baby Jesus and the Orphans! The State is coming to DVD! If you like Reno 911, Stella, The Wet Hot American Summer, and countless more tengentially connected shows and film you will love THE STATE. To put it succinctly, it was in the pantheon of killer shows that didn't last such as Arrested Development and Mr Show. It was the show too cool for the US's coolest network, MTV, and took every chance it had to take the piss. Here's the DVD announcement from David Wain's myspace
I tend to have certain rituals in life, probably due to being raised in an highly organised OCD house. One such ritual that forms today's nostalgitude entry is Star Trek: The Animated Series. At one time, Teletoon was a ramshackle group of cheap animation, and this, in a manner of speaking, was its flagship. Dre and I used to watch it every Friday night before going out to the club. Now I am not a Trekkie, nor am I here to harsh on Trekkies. I am here to vouch for something which is integral in all great works of art: the medium must suit the subject matter. I hereby put forth that this medium was the perfect one for the subject matter.
For one delightful year, Filmation studios put forth an animated version of the series using all the original actors. Some of the best-loved storylines are reworked in this half hour series. Everyone is well aware of the camp of the original, which has been lampooned to death, but somehow the animated version just works. The storytelling is tighter, the voice work is better than the onscreen presence of some of the iconic actors, and the fantasy seems more plausible. Perhaps it doesn't believe its own hype, and that's something it has over the original. Here's part one of a classic episode. Others are a google away.
Um, yeah... So last weekend I had the dubious pleasure of attending the "4th Annual Drinks Show" (really? what kind of gong show were the previous ones?) I honestly thought, given my experience with events sponsored by alcohol companies that it would be good, and at the very least, it would be fun.
Well.... to borrow a phrase from Malcolm, it was a SHIT SHOW. It was puzzlingly held at the Toronto Brickworks, which looks like a cross between a hot house circa 1800 and some kind of internment camp. Well, looks aren't everything. Surely for the twenty bones you shell out, you get something fun, right? for your 20 dollhairs, you got... a miniature (less than a shot size) mixed drink! THAT'S IT. "Perhaps you get free food?" We wondered, as food was mentioned. No, tickets for barely palatable cater-fare were 5 dollars each.
So what WAS there? Well, tickets for a predetermined list of full-sized "new" drinks were 7 dollars each. those aforementioned "tasters" were 2 dollars each. The problem here is that for 25 cents and up, I could have tried anything here at the Summerhill liquor store, and not have had to contend with the sights (obese-multi-tattooed woman wearing more faux python than hair dye (a fight to the finish)) the sounds (music that even the Entertainment District has given up on) and smells (awful food, Portisheads, and cigarettes wafting in from the ramshackle "smoker's area" mmmmm. )
So what about the drinks? They were not terrible, but tended toward White Trash alcopop rather than a quaffer's delight.
One thing that was particularly lame was the COMPLETE LACK of any kind of promotions from the partners. Where were the things people live for, swag-wise? Jamieson golf balls, Cruzan Rum Leis, Sauza lime tchotchkes? There wasn't a contest, a giveaway, or themed pen in sight. MISSED OPPORTUNITY. There weren't even people dressed up as stuff! Everyone loves that. The idea for enabling the partners to brand and have fun with end users was lost in a sea of "pay us money and eff off."
The final nail in the coffin of this atrocity was the "free shuttle service" courtesy of several "hop on/hop off" tour companies in the city. Getting there was fine, and went off without a hitch. Getting back was ANOTHER MATTER ENTIRELY. You see, you need a venue that has an easily accessible driveway for the de facto form of transportation (parking was not available, so it was cabs or shuttle.) One where the transport can TURN AROUND, and also maneuver with a stream of cabs moving in and out, and having a growing throng of drunken rubes trying to figure out what's going on (in an extra level of complexity, there were 2 routes for the shuttles, which caused mass hysteria.)
This Richard Gere Posse entry is dedicated to the 20 dollars I spent to spend time with people the likes of which I have rarely seen outside of a small town "legion" function. I hope it was worth losing your life to such a poorly executed (but not entirely effing stupid) idea. RIP little buddy.
Below please find a "re-enactment" taken from Flavor of Love Charm School
Puga and I had to attend a mandatory training course one week to learn how to program in Java. It was pretty dreadful, and we ended up making our own fun. First Puga invented an applet that basically made you trip out if you looked at it (it DID start out looking like a tree when he started, as per the manual.) The other thing we ended up doing was scouring the interwebulator. We came upon this, and it was only due to a recent discussion about spamusement and other gems of dissociation from work that we remembered this pantpisser's delight, Click through to see some amazing reinterpretations of the original covers from the popular "Choose Your Own Adventure" series.
I am a notorious web video nerd. There have been many high points (the He-Man rendition of "What's Going On?") and LOW points (Ray and TC watching endless hours of people farting on camera.) What I hope to do with Esses and Gees is put up all the stuff I love in one spot. There's not a lot of commentary, so it's perfect for those who don't read. Enjoy!
We're all familiar with White Trash. It's not hard to see or make fun of WTs because the humour is so base. But what about the other 1/3 of society? What about those who live comfortably, but can't seem to make things leap from the pages of Instyle magazine seamlessly into their daily lives? In the words of Kim of Australia's Kath and Kim, "It's not easy being a hornbag." Kath and Kim takes place in suburban Melbourne where Kath lives a highly erotic life with partner/purveyor of fine meats Kel (and one damned fine hunk of spunk.) Kath's adult daughter intermittently lives at Kath's townhouse, depending on whether her and her husband are speaking, and depending on their "effluence." The show is a perfect pastiche of middle class suburban life regardless of location. The characters are all broadly drawn, but it is a pleasure to watch whereas most American familial sitcoms have been long dead since the Simpsons rolled into town to eviscerate the medium. They also take turns answering the tough questions, like "The Jade Tikis vs the Fuzzy Kiwis" (vis-a-vis which earrings are more appropriate with a Mango Espadrille) It's well worth searching about a bit to get your hands on. More info here, and clip follows:
For young nerds like me once upon a time, TLC used to be the treasure trove of television goodies: lists of essential novels, explorations of science, and the show that kicked all their asses: Connections. James Burke's series (There were three iterations) explored the history of science and technological development in a way that no one else looked at information at the time: By linking all the ideas together in a "web" that transcended time and space, but somehow created irrefutable connections between discrete ideas. It was innovative, engaging, and mind blowing, and it did something only the best TV does: it changed the way I thought. To be clear, it did not change my opinions, it changed the way I actually connected informational tidbits in my own mind. I thank James Burke for the change he made in my life, and I salute you, good sir. Below is the very first episode. The show is finished, but James is still active on the web here. A fun tribute to him is here
I love History. I love the Beeb. I love how the Beeb does history. A series of programs called "What the _____ Did For Us" (Where the blank denotes a period of History, such as the Tudor Dynasty) is quite simply the best possible type of Historical programming. Full of humour, sassy tidbits, and links between human foibles and the inventions they inspired, each episode engages and entertains. The demonstrations of inventions are a highlight, as are host Adam Hart-Davis' many costume changes. Here is a snippet of "What the ancients did for us"
In a recent discussion with Puga, we recalled a fond time at the evil empire when we spent the better part of a day reading the comic stylings of spamusement (and making a lot of people wonder wth was so gee dee funny.) The concept is simple, and the execution is incredible: titles of spam emails translated into comic panels (pictured here is "Impress the Females") What's great is that they are very rarely literal translations of the material. The author really has fun with the subject manner in a way that doesn't go to the lowest common denominator. Enjoy, and poisson urinal!
Anyone who knows me knows 2 things: 1) I love costumes, and 2) I love to call people douchebags. It is no surprise, then, that when I happened upon this website, I was instantly charmed. Like another humour site, spamusement, Rock and Roll Confidential's Hall of Douchebags is a treat for the eyes, and an instant pick-me-up for office doldrums. This is a well-edited collection of bad band photos that is purely shittastic. Once you begin your trip through the hall, be prepared to lose yourself for an hour or more. The humour on the site is incisive, inflammatory, and spot-on. Interesting is the curator's note that a great many bad band photos are taken at train tracks, in front of brick walls. Give'r.
more douchebags here
Summertime means grillin and chillin, and you need a food layer to put down before you drink too many Bourbon Sours. This is a definitive recipe for something only gee dash dee could come up with.... Churrasco Chicken. A favourite of the Portuguese, and the non-Portuguese-in-the-know, Churrasco Chicken is based on a fairly standard chicken recipe popular in the Mediterranean: Chicken marinated in Lemon, Olive Oil, Salt, and Garlic, but in this case, it's grilled low and slow, and dressed with piri-piri sauce (A favourite of mine is Nando's.) I used to live in little Portugal, and since I was a poor student, we used to eat this at "Chicken King" all the time. This recipe is something that once you have it, you crave it, and once you crave it, you NEED to eat it. Here, then, is the recipe:
4 Chicken Legs
Juice of one Large Lemon
1/3 Cup Olive Oil
2-3 teaspoons Kosher Salt
3-4 Peeled Garlic Cloves
In a minichopper, blend lemon juice, olive oil, salt and garlic until emulsified. put legs and liquid in a freezer zip bag. Refrigerate minimum 2 hours, maximum 24 hours.
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Cook Chicken for 45 minutes to one hour, or until temperature registers 180 degrees on a thermometer. Alternatively, cook on a medium hot grill until juices run clear. Serve with piri piri sauce.
So, there I was, minding my own business when a text came through from Puga. (We had just gone to the Black Camel, one of my favourite lunch places in town, so I was wondering what was up his clunge) and all it said was "White Stripes show yonge at grosvenor. NOW." I put on some sensible shoes and ran for my life 4 blocks south to meet them. Sho 'nuff, we walked into the Y and saw a buffet of hipsterz lining the hallways, and a clearly live version of "Apple Blossom" was playing. It was definitely cool being there, even if the set list was short and it was for the kiddies. (Hipsterz all over the city are secretly wishing they hadn't forced their girlfriends to get "the big A" today)
Although I am often told I laugh at everything (Corey used to have a poem about me laughing, and that laugh was FAMOUS when I was at the evil empire) I am picky when it comes to "Comix." All that changed the day I opened up HK magazine and caught my first Tom The Dancing Bug comic. From then on I was hooked on the crazy throwbacks, searing assessments of celebrity culture, old tymey references, and of course liberal disgust with the current administration. It's actually staggering how much diversity there is in the strips from week to week, and some of them are so detailed, they take a while to read. He never loses his bite, in any given week, a bite I would liken to an old bitchy drunk lady at the country club. (It's FANTASTIC!) It's here for your perusal and RSS is here.
It's the answer to the question noone asked: "Who is the best matchmaker in Buffalo, New York?" Patti Novak is the tough-talking (and rough-accented) matchmaker with the mostest, and the subject of the eerily addictive show Confessions of a Matchmaker on A&E. In addition to a parade of midwestern shit shows who are SINGLE FOR A REASON, there are incredibly compelling candidates, like John, the subject of the pilot (it's easy to see how this show was sold.) John, after relaying his 41-year-old virgin status and BOMBING on a date with a girl, who, by Patti's own admission "has to have it," John is subjected to an heart to heart, the product of which lands him a date with a man. What happens next is simply incredible. The show is gripping. Set your Tivos to get it Saturdays at 10.
check it out here: