26 August 2007

Sunday Answers

A little free association from Luna Nina

1. Uneven :: Life
2. Wonder :: Amazement
3. Spider :: Web
4. Emma :: Friends
5. Swing:: Child
6. Orbit :: Gum
7. Flirt :: Me
8. Donation :: Need
9. Veil :: Wedding
10. Atmosphere :: Dying

20 August 2007

Monday Answers...

From Monday's a Bitch.

1. What percent of your pants are denim?
I would say about 30-40%. I only have a few pairs of jeans.

2. What are your thoughts on the WWE? Entertaining? Irritating? Worst invention ever?
I grew up with WWF...and had a love/hate relationship. Love, probably because of the soap opera aspect; hate, because my brother and cousins used to practice the latest moves on me. I think what is going on now is very tragic.

3. Have you seen any movies recently that you would consider to be in the class of "greatest movies of all time"?
I don't think so. Wedding Crashers -- which isn't too recent -- will go down as a classic, along with Old School, 40-year old virgin, etc.

4. Have you ever denied having a livejournal/blog?
No. I may not tell people the name, but if they google me they'll find it.

5. If you were able to travel anywhere in the world, with any two people (alive, dead, real or fictional) as your traveling companions, where would you go, and who would come with you?
I think I would like to go somewhere with my two grandmothers. I am not sure where I would take them, but I bet the two of them together would have been a hoot.

17 August 2007

Friday Answers

BeliBlog poses some interesting questions...

Q1 - Back Seat Driver: When sitting in the back seat of a car, do you have a preference of which side--passenger or driver--you sit on? What if you were the only passenger sitting in the back... would you have a preference then? Related question: As the driver, do you have a preference of which side a lone back seat passenger sits?

I prefer to sit on the passenger side when I ride in the back seat. If I am alone in the back, I'll usually sit on the passenger side...although occasionally I'll sit in the middle if I need to be involved in the front seat conversation. As the driver, if there is just one person in the back seat, I prefer them to be on the passenger side.

Q2 - Lawsuits: A member of the Rutgers women's basketball team sued Don Imus and CBS on Tuesday, claiming the radio personality's sexist and racist comments about the team damaged her reputation. Kia Vaughn's lawsuit says Imus and his former co-host Bernard McGuirk, along with CBS Corp. and CBS Radio, are legally responsible for damage done to her character and reputation. Do you agree that Vaughn's character and reputation were damaged by Imus' remarks and that she has legitimate cause for action against the caustic radio host?

I think this society is a little sue-crazy.

Q3 - Recall: Toy maker Mattel announced this week that they are voluntarily recalling millions of units of toys because of "impermissible use of lead paint and risks associated with small, high-powered magnets." Have you been affected by Mattel's recall? If not, when was the last time you were directly impacted by a mandatory or voluntary product recall?

I have not been affected by this recall. I believe there was a voluntary recall on my car a few years ago, and I brought it into the shop and had it fixed.

Q4 - Impressions: If you could get away with it and do it extremely well, whose voice would you impersonate for an entire workday?

Barry White would be fun.

15 August 2007

You Can't Stop the Beat...or Can You?

Last night, I went and saw the new Hairspray movie.

I have been a bit wary of this since I first heard of its production. First off, there was already a brilliant original Hairspray, which remains one of my favorite movies ever even after almost 20 years (yikes, has it really been that long!). The first film had a subversive edge that pushed an agenda in a not-too-overt way. There was a lot going on there, but it still had camp and fun and Link Larkin.

Secondly, they cast John Travolta as Edna. Now, Edna has always been played, on the screen and on Broadway, by a man dressed as a woman. It was always obvious it was a large man behind those muumuus. Aside from a padded bra and some makeup, and perhaps a wig, it was always apparent. The audience was always grossly fascinated with this person, and that was the point. John Travolta in his prosthetics didn't really appeal to me. And, Zac Effron, you are no Michael St. Gerard.

I had seen the play on Broadway, and absolutely loved it. It kept the camp of the original, and the main message ("Integration now. Segregation never."). Although it was more pointed, after all, you can't have 15 subplots happening on the stage, the music kept it lively and the small cast kept it spirited. I believe Penny Pingleton was permanently punished with a big scarlet P in the play, but I can't be absolutely sure on that.

So the movie...it was fun but didn't work for me. The main character kept the perkiness that works on stage, but not so much in a movie. In a movie, with the close ups, she had the opportunity to play it with the edge of the original Ricki Lake character, and I didn't see that so much. The music was fun, but like many Broadway-turned-movie songs, they were too overdone. The audience couldn't feel the movement on the screen like you can on the stage, couldn't feel a part of the characters.

But to me, the main thing I couldn't get past was the Edna character. John T. played her like a female Dr. Evil, with an accent that made no sense. He was too self-conscious, too "John Travolta I am so cool." I didn't dig it. I know they wanted a big name in the cast, but c'mon. Could they not get Harvey Fierstein in there? The rest of the cast was great...Michele Pfeifer was perfect as Mrs. Von Tussell, played as an alcoholic past her prime. But the John Travolta character, rather than adding to the movie, really took away from it.

It was an ok movie, definitely not as good as the play and far from the original. It just makes me question the purpose of doing remakes like these. Yes, I get bringing Broadway to the masses, but, really, it isn't the same. There is nothing like the excitement you get when the lights go down and the curtain goes up, and the orchestra strums up the first chords. You can't get that in a theater.

13 August 2007

Sayonara, Rove

The great puppetmaster Karl Rove is set to resign by the end of this month. While I should be celebrating, the more cynical side of me thinks something is not quite right.

Why now, suddenly in the middle of the last term of his puppet, does he "need to spend more time with his family"? This smacks of a cover, and a lazy excuse. There is something that is either about to go down, or was going to happen and now, with Rove out of the picture, will become moot. I can only begin to imagine what that may be.

This administration has gotten away with a ton of offenses, many of them, I have no doubt, masterminded by one Karl Rove. They have successfully instilled a few into Americans that runs so deep, every event (even natural disasters) seems to be looked at as terrorism, every Middle Eastern person a terrorist. The fear has no limits - people in the most podunk town think they're next. It is brilliant marketing by Rove and his minions, who have actually, in a way, helped the terrorists do their job - make people terrified. That they have been able to do all this, and are above reproach, really makes me terrified of the future of this country that I hold so dear.

So what's next for Rove? I don't buy this family thing. Will he go on to run the campaigns, albeit very behind the scenes, of one of the Republican candidates? Will he continue to pull the strings of the current administrations, but without the official rights to do so? Will he go hang out with his pal Scooter, and thank him for being a scapegoat? But, most importantly, will he leave the American people alone? This, I doubt.

Football Already?

Last night I was talking to a friend, who was very excited; apparently she has tickets to tonight's 49ers game and field passes. I was excited for her, as well, but couldn't help thinking: Is it football season already?

Apparently, it is. Or, to be more exact, it is pre-season. But still, it seems to me that football season just ended. I have a hard time believing, even if the calendar tells me it is true, that over 6 months have passed since the Superbowl. Caveat, of course: I am not the hugest football fan in the world, but I do like it...when it is time for the season.

This should be the height of the baseball season. A time when we are lamenting our team's suckiness (yes, I am looking at you, Oakland A's) or celebrating our team's sudden chance at a pennant. Baseball should be the lead story on SportsCenter. But every year around this time, the same thing happens. Suddenly football becomes the focal point, which makes no sense, because what happens now, save for a few roster moves and perhaps an injury, makes no difference overall. The players aren't really trying out, a la Spring Training (which, come to think of it, I have no idea if this is true or not. Perhaps they are. Still not digging the football this time of year).

To me, football season is when it is cool outside; when I want to curl up in a warm blanket, perhaps next to a warm body, and watch the game, only moving for another beer or bathroom break. It's when I want to slap on the long sleeves and watch the folks at the park play (or try to play myself, which is usually fun but ends in an embarrassing display of ineptitude).

But now, in August, when the weather is finally heating up here in SF, I am watching commercials for "Battle of the Bay," which, if our baseball seasons have been any indication, will be the battle of who sucks less.

07 August 2007

Tuesday Answers

Our Abstract Emotions - New Meme is a new offering from Confessions of a Housewife. This week, we were asked to find a picture that describes how we're feeling.

Here's a lonely flower amid a rough landscape.

Linkie Love

It's time for a little PPP Linkie Love!!

01 August 2007

Being Barry

I am in the midst of an all-nighter (it is already 1am here in Chicago, and I have to leave for the airport at 4.30am...why sleep?), and in a little lull waiting for some info from my boss (who is also all-nighting it). I have just watched several episodes, it seems, of SportsCenter and Baseball Tonight, both of which we broken into several times to cut over to the SF/LA game and Barry Bonds' at bat.

I was at the Giant's game the other night (yes, I know I am an A's fan...but my friend had good tickets...and I had fun!); it happened to be the night Barry hit is 754th HR. I have to admit, I was swept up by the excitement. I stood up each time he came to bat. I cheered (yes, I KNOW!) when he hit his homerun. I was pumped to think he could tie or break the record while I was there.

A lot of the conversations around me focused on 1. if the pitcher would pitch to Barry or walk him, and 2. how people should treat the breaking of this record. I was, of course, surrounded by Giants fans, so there was some bias, but I bought most of what they were saying.

Should there be an asterisk next to his name? I don't think so. While I don't think what he did was right, I tend to look at it in the context of what was going on at that moment in history. Many players were using steroids (again, not that it makes it ok). There was a loophole in the rules and they found a way to exploit it. I think it is dangerous to start putting the infamous asterisk next to records; it will force the issue that there are caveats to every record. What if Babe Ruth had played against African-American or Hispanic players? What if Hank Aaron would have played at PacBell Park? What if, what if?

The game changes and evolves, sometimes not for the better. That is the fact of many sports, industries, people. It is just the way.

Perhaps if Barry was a friendlier person, more media-savvy, perhaps then he wouldn't be the scapegoat for many people who were doing the same thing. I am not condoning his actions. I am not supporting him. I really just wish that this saga would be over already.

And, I'll give him props where they're due. One of the hardest feats in sports is to hit a baseball. That's just to make contact. So to hit the ball well, to connect that many times, to me, is pretty darn impressive.