Monday, December 31, 2007

2007: Year in Review!

'007 was a pretty good year, in my opinion. Let's review some of the highlights (in no particular order), shall we?



Birth of my blog!

The social event of the year, the CraKenzie Wedding



I survived not only Grad School: Year One, but also Being a Teaching Assistant for History of Science (which, I have to be honest, I wasn't exactly, y'know, "qualified" to do

My roommate got two groovy cats (free tip: roommates' cats are great--all of the catnip-induced fun, none of the poop cleanup)



Aggie basketball: it was the year of Acie Law IV, and about time, too. And the Ags got to the Sweet Sixteen (and I suppose it's best to focus on that instead of the being a mere layup away from the Elite Eight). Sure, Billy left us, but A) we have The Turge now, whom I really like so far and B) Billy is now crashing and burning. Ags 1, Billy 0. (Come to think of it, Ags 2, if you count Billy's attempted luring of DeAndre Jordan.)

Aggie football: lame season (although slightly better than I predicted) highlighted by the thinly disguised blessing of the email newsletter scandal, which sealed the deal on my favorite firing ever. Also, we Beat The Hell Outta t.u., and that's always fun (you know, the two times I've experienced it).


I snagged me a gentleman caller.

We got to experience the (probably) last and (certainly) most powerful burst of HARRY POTTER MANIA!!! That was good times.

I was on that one show.

Big TV!

I got to see "Albuquerque" performed live! SO AWESOME.




Still , I think that 2008 is going to be even better. More on that later.

Of course, if you think I've neglected to mention anything important, let me know.
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Monday, December 24, 2007

EW.

My sister just told me--to give me sweet Christmas dreams, I'm sure--that people can make synthetic diamonds out of ashes.

Human ashes.

It's supposedly a great way to remember loved ones. Did your great uncle pass on? Well, just put his earthly remains through this 16-week process, and you can wear him as a tasteful solitare for years to come!

Seriously, though, I am uber-creeped-out by this. Come on. It's like the Soylent Green of jewelry.

(And on that note, Merry Christmas, everyone!)
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Best Lineup Introductions Ever.

My dad found these--I didn't see this game, but I wish I had.



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Sunday, December 23, 2007

I Really Really Dislike Nicholas Cage


I was thinking about HOW AWFUL Nicholas Cage's hair is in National Treasure 2: Apparently There's Some More Treasure, and a Sarcastic Guy. I was wondering whether it looked more like a toupee, or more like the hair of a chimpanzee, or more like a toupee for a chimpanzee.

And then it occurred to me. It's like a toupee than not even a chimpanzee would wear. (Those little guys are pretty smart, after all.)
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Saturday, December 22, 2007

History + Fiction = ?

I have a problem with historical ficiton. Not a moral problem or anything; I'm ok with the existence of historical fiction, I certainly don't mind other people reading it. I just have never been able to bring myself to do it.

There's just too much fiction and not enough history, for my taste. I can see needing to use fiction to fill in the gaps of what we just can't know, but what actually happened is often so interesting that I don't understand why writers need to change around major stuff.

Like Anne Boleyn. I don't know why you need to make stuff up in order to make her life more suitable for the big screen. Admittedly, I haven't read The Other Boleyn Girl, so I'm not an authority on What Its Deal Is.

I am somewhat intrigued, though. In fact, as far as the movie goes, I was sold until about the 1:45 mark of the trailer (Then my condition was downgraded from Sold to Intrigued):



I think I want to see it, even though the innacuries may, at the end of the day, just annoy me.


Speaking of intrigued, but in more of a confused way--there's some miniseries next month, Comanche Moon? And it's a Western? And it's all gritty and whatnot? And . . . Steve Zahn is in it? I don't get it, Steve Zahn. I don't get it.
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Keeping Up With My Correspondence: TA Edition

Dear my students,

Despite what you may believe, I'm not an idiot. When I told you that you had to write a six page paper (and clarified for you that it meant at least 5 1/2 pages, less than 7 1/2), I did actually mean six pages. It will apparently surprise some of you to know that I'm not fooled by any of the following:

1. 1 1/2 margins on all sides.
2. a header like

Your name

Class

Professor's name

My name

Date





Title







Beginning of paper.
3. or, most of all, the use of Courier New. (Seriously. How dare you use Courier New? Not only is it--AS I KNOW PERFECTLY WELL--150% as big as Times New Roman, but it's so ugly it makes my eyes bleed. Reading more than a paragraph of it gives me appendicitis. And stabbing pains in my brainstem. It's Satan's own font. Really. His secretaries use it on all official Hell memos. . . . I could go on.)

So, to that sizeable minority that gave these "techniques" a shot: nice try but . . . no, no it wasn't even a nice try.

Love,
Rachel
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I Really Like This Picture.


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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Internet Hiatus 2: Electric Boogaloo

It's all crazy with school up in here, my blog-readers. (Or something.) At this point, I'm so disoriented that I don't know how far away December 22nd is, but I do know that I can't give any of my time to internet pursuits (beyond, of course, email and maybe some news) until then.

In the meantime, here's "The Twelve Days of Christmas." After a fashion.
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Guess What? It's Snowing.

Here in Wisconsin, we haven't had any devastating ice storms or things like that, but we have had lots and lots of snow. Since it had been snowing since about 10:00 this morning, I decided to check out the hour-by-hour forecast on weather.com, and here is what I found for the rest of today:

That's just ridiculous. Thanks, Wisconsin.
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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Check It Out!

I'm officially much too busy with end-of-semester schoolwork to be blogging, but . . . I'm in the paper!

Specifically, I wrote a letter to the Aggie sportswriter in the San Antonio Express-News. Mine is the penultimate question in the Aggie Mailbag.

As he said, he edits for clarity/brevity, and he changed mine slightly for (I hope) the brevity. When I sent it, it said " . . .Yes, Aggies ought to pack Reed--for their own good as well as the team's".

I was agreeing with the larger point he was making in his previous column: that Aggie fans ought to go watch the team no matter who they're playing. I don't care if the opponent is someone you've never heard of--the other team, your team, is a top fifteen team. They'd be a huge draw anywhere else they play, so why not in Reed?

Go. Fill seats. Be loud (except when our boys are shooting free throws). Intimidate the other guys, encourage our guys. But the easiest thing of all to do at an Aggie basketball game is have fun. You totally will.

Still, though, saying that Billy Gillispie would still be in College Station if he'd played to a packed house every night--I'm sorry, no way. He was getting national exposure, big bucks spent on his contract and on new facilities, and the attendence was steadily going up. Plus, of course, he was well on the way to becoming A&M's one and only basketball god. All he had to do to get deified was stick it out for ten, maybe just five years. The man is Ambitious, and once one of the basketball schools of all basketball schools called, he was going to go. I don't care what Brent Zwerneman says otherwise (and, of course, you'll notice that Brent doesn't really say anything otherwise. He musters no proof, he just restates his [wrong] opinion).

Not that it matters now, because now we have The Turge . . . but Brent Zwerneman is right that The Turge wants, and ought to get, more attendance. Just like his predecessor.
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Monday, December 10, 2007

There Really is No Accounting for Taste

Editor's note: Readers, if you have ever watched Two and a Half Men of your own volition, you probably shouldn't read this post, because I'm going to trash talk you. Sorry.

As everyone knows, the sitcom is in sorry, sorry shape. I mean, According to Jim is still on. Horrible Brad Garrett vehicle Til Death somehow got picked up for a second season (it's not that I've ever watched an episode, but when you figure they put the best parts in the commercials . . . no thanks). But, most tellingly, the number one sitcom on the air is Two and a Half Men. Have you tried to watch that show? I've made like three attempts, and have discovered to be, in a word, unwatchable. It's NOT FUNNY. It's not ever trying that hard to be funny. I can't even fathom living people finding it entertaining . . . although the laugh track thinks it's a riot. Here is an actual transcript (no exaggeration) of the four seconds I managed to watch of it (keep in mind, all of the actors are barely bothering to inflect their lines, let alone give some kind of funny delivery):

Charlie Sheen: Junior high, huh? That brings back some memories.
[laugh track]
Other guy: Can we please not go down that road?
[laugh track]
Fat kid: What do you mean?
[laugh track]
Other guy: It's just that kids in junior high can be kind of judgmental.
[laugh track]
Sassy fat housemaid: Especially if you're knocked up.
[HUGE laugh track]

That's right; one (unfunny) joke, five laughs. America, for watching this, you're stupid.
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Sunday, December 9, 2007

New Venezuelan Time Zone!

Hugo Chavez decided (because he can, world! Take that!) to change Venezuela's time zone by a half hour:

Speaking ahead of Sunday time change, President Hugo Chavez told reporters that he doesn't care if people think he is crazy. He said the new time will go ahead anyway.
The Venezuelan leader has said the time change will give schoolchildren more daylight.


But if he were really as big a rebel/socialist cowboy as he tries to make everybody think he is, he would have changed it by, like, 47.2 minutes. Or 4 hours. How's that for more daylight for schoolchildren, huh?
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The Golden Compass

The Golden Compass didn't do as well as it was supposed to this weekend. USA Today thinks it's because of the antipathy of religious groups. And I suppose that's possible. But it also could be because it probably, you know, sucks.

If it were getting good reviews, I--for instance--would totally go see it. Sure, the author is some sort of atheist, but any atheists who decided to boycott The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe missed out on a pretty sweet movie.


But then, of course, that movie was actually good, and not (as The Golden Compass apparently is) all talky exposition and no character development.

I just don't think that a movie should get let off the hook for being lousy just because "those darn Christians are riled up again!" I guess we'll see if it holds up in final analysis. It would be like that time people decided Fran should be fired for the amoral email newsletter, making everyone forget that he should have been fired for being a lousy coach.

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Friday, December 7, 2007

Bad News, Texans . . .


That thing about how Texas's is the only state flag that can be flown at equal height with the US flag? Not true.

Sorry.
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Schadenfreude: Double-Edged Sword

I thought it was pretty when t-sips kept getting arrested. But apparently, in criminality as in all other aspects of sports, Aggies keep trying to keep up with the Joneses.

Police: Aggie Football Arrests Stemmed from Drug Deal

There are many parts of that story that gave me pause--the utter cliche of an excuse of "I was just keeping those drugs for my friend" and the nightmarish quality of the crime they committed (breaking in and duct-taping the mouths of the people shut, just to get $40 and a cell phone) come to mind--but the weirdest part was this:

"Authorities called Babalola at his number claiming to be a ficticious basket company. He confirmed his current address was on Welsh in College Station."

. . . A ficticious basket company? As in, baskets? Odd choice, CSPD. Or is that the go-to undercover phone identity? Should all criminals beware of basket-related cold calls?

In any event, you are idiots, Yemi Babalola and Brandon Joiner. Way to throw away promising futures for the possibility of weed, and for $20 apiece. Morons.
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FAIL

I was wasting time on the internet (shocking!) and I came across a thread on TexAgs with hilarious FAIL and FAIL-related pictures. Here are the best ones:















And, of course:
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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

World Events of Unequal Importance

I had an above-average news morning today, finding out several very interesting things from the powerful combination of Google News and TexAgs. In no particular order:

Some dude in North Dakota found a dinosaur with fossilized skin and muscle! That's totally awesome.

Venezualans are wising up. Way to block dictatorship, university students. Way to block dictatorship.

Bob Stoops is a little bit petty. Voting for LSU at #6? Very objective, sir.
Click here to read more . . .

Friday, November 30, 2007

A Movie I'm Not Interested in Seeing, Anyway

I finally put my finger on what bothers me about Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story.

Unlike the parodic movies I'm used to seeing (OK, using to seeing . . . previews for), it's not a parody of a genre of movie, but rather a parody of one specific movie.


I suppose you could argue that a lot of movies, both big screen and tv, follow the same sort of arc of an entertainer's career, but this is clearly just Walk the Line: But Funny! Isn't that a lot of trouble to go to, to make an entire feature film that makes fun of one other feature film? (Admittedly, I might be defensive because I enjoyed Walk the Line so much. [Note to self: I should watch Walk the Line again.])

What is does have going for it it's that it's Judd Apatow (I had assumed it was in the Adam McKay/Will Ferrel family of movies, I guess because it stars That One Guy). I have really liked his movies--especially Knocked Up (if you haven't seen it, it's seriously very very good)--but this one looks dubious.

In other movie news, one parodic movie that I am increasingly tempted to go see . . . is Enchanted. I know, I know, but think about it: how long has it been since Disney was really turning out princess movies? I guess Cinderella/Snow White is as princessy as it can get, but I would say that the most recent princessing up at Disney was in the Little Mermaid/Beauty and Beast era, in a time when I was exactly the right age to be extremely enthusiastic about Disney princesses. And, since you can't really enjoy a parody without familiarity with its fodder, I woudl argue that Enchanted is actually aimed at me. (Not just me, but you see what I mean.) Also? The bicycles are still funny:


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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Non-Aggie Football

This article really annoys me. The guy thinks that no one cares about a West Virginia-Missouri national championship, and that Ohio State-USC would be better. He bases this on: making fun of WVU & MU's mascots, that tOSU & USC are "the best teams in the country" (based on what? Record? Strength of schedule?), and that tOSU & USC have "better stories" (Once upon a time, there were two teams that everyone decided in advance were really good. Then everyone ignored their actual seasons and they got to play in the national championship. The end).

He alleges that his argument is not based on the fact that West Virginia and Missouri aren't traditional national powers, writing, "No, my argument for disliking this potential game is not elitist." I think that's the reason I got so mad about his article--because that's just a lie.

Ohio State and USC have done nothing this season to prove that they're better than the other teams out there. OSU played cupcakes and are in the Big T(elev)en, so they only lost once. I'll tell you, with my authority as A Person Who Lives in Wisconsin, that the Big T(elev)en is just bad. (Do you like boring football? Do you like teams that get lambasted by the Pac 10 and Div 1-AA competing for the conference title? Then this is the conference for you!) And then tOSU lost to Illinois, who--guess what?--aren't all that good. [Edited to add: here's a good article on tOSU from ESPN. Despite my friend Lindsay being a Buckeye fan, the more I think about it, the more I seriously don't want them in the big game.]

As for USC, they're a two-loss team. And one of those losses is to Stanford. Notre Dame beat Stanford. Give me a break. The only reason to root for tOSU and USC in the title game is if you are a fan of either of those teams, or if you just don't like seeings teams you don't happen to follow in the championship. Of course he's being elitist. Of course he's being unfair.

The only good thing about this article is that it is paired with a much better written and better argued piece for the opposite viewpoint. At least CBS Sports as an organization isn't totally endorsing a lame, boring, snoozefest national championship. Because that would make me a little more annoyed.
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Never Gonna Give You Up

Since Ashley mentioned it, I went and looked for the Coach Sherman needs a 'stache thread on TexAgs. My favorite picture there has, as you can see, little to nothing to do with 'staches:

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Mike Sherman


Well, Ags, I'm cautiously optimistic about our new football coach--with a bit more emphasis on the optimism than the caution.
There is, as we have learned, no way to know in advance how someone is going to do in a new coaching position, but plenty of signs are pointing in a good direction.

He has coaching experience in a nice variety of categories--he's coached and (for the most part) won in the NFL, both in Texas and in Green Bay, a place that prides itself on tradition and fan loyalty. Does that remind you of anywhere else? The NFL coaching is a benefit both for recruiting (what hotshot high school athlete doesn't want to play for somebody who might be able to guide them to a pro career?) and for allowing him not to be a jerk by abandoning one group of college guys to coach a different bunch. (Yes, I mean you, two former A&M coaches whose names need not invade this space.)

But he's also, very importantly, coached at the college level. And he's actually coached at A&M, doing a pretty darn good job as O-Line coach. Also, of course, he's been talking a really good game about how much he respects our traditions and uniqueness: "From the Hullabaloo, Caneck! Caneck!, to the Muster, the elephant walk, the rings -- everything about this university, I believe in. There's so much of this university beyond football. There are so many facets to it that make it so special. I think my understanding of that will help me be a better head coach." Frankly, I don't think knowing the words to the War Hymn will boost anybody's winning percentage. But it's icing on the cake.

Now, I'm not going to get my hopes too far up, so I'm not deciding right now that Sherman is Aggie football's savior, the one brought by divine providence (or Bill Byrne) to deliver Texas A&M to the promised land (which I think means a national championship, not just beating division rivals). However, I don't know what else, at this stage, we could ask for.

He seems like a decent guy who still has the liking and respect of his former bosses and players. He seems like a reasonable investment with a good ratio of promise to cost (not like--shudder--Steve Spurrier would have been). More importantly, he seems like he may be able to win some games, although that is the biggest question mark. Finally, he seems like the kind of fella who, if he does win games--even a whole heck of a lot of games--he may just stick around at A&M. That, I think, would be the ideal situation: a coach we want to keep and who wants to be kept.

Gig 'em, Coach Sherman; now let's go Beat The Hell Outta everybody!
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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Official Fran Vendetta: Epilogue

Part 1


It was a rainy day. It wasn't one of those days where the rain came down in buckets, but it was pervasively wet. And it should have been miserable, not just because of the weather.

It was October of 2003, my junior year at A&M, and we were well on our way to losing--very badly--to Oklahoma State. I had seen us beat The Lesser Okies my freshman year, on September 22, 2001, though that game was entirely dwarfed by its context. And by t-shirts. I had gone to Stillwater to see us lose the next year (another, much colder rainy day). I had a great time on that, especially when our vocal Aggie minority had fed off of (and, I think, bolstered) a second half revival of our Wrecking Crew.

However, this day . . . this day was a very different loss in the rain. We had already lost four of our seven games that season, and it wasn't going to get any easier. By the beginning of the fourth quarter, fans (including students) were leaving in droves. It's hard to blame even Aggies for leaving when their team is down 31-0.

Nevertheless, many of us stayed, and were treated to 10 pity points and, of course, the usual Kyle Field jumbotron advertisements. When they played the ad--the one with the jubilant voice announcing to us all the slogan that had been blared all season, a variation of which had been plastered even across that year's stadium cups: "The Coach Fran Era Has Arrived!!!"--what could we do but laugh? Cry, I guess. But we laughed instead. We laughed and laughed, there on first deck, sopping wet, ready to wait out the game . . . the season . . . the next four seasons with our Aggies. The Coach Fran Era had arrived, indeed.

Now, the Coach Fran Era Has Ended.

. . . !!!



Part 2

If Fran had coached all his games like he'd coached on Friday, he would still have a job. That was a great game.

Of course, any boneheaded fan would have coached the Ags like Fran did on Friday. "You know what you dudes should do? Like, McGee should throw it and stuff sometimes. Like, sometimes to, you know, Martellus? Cuz like he's good? But, yeah, also, sometimes Steve, you should hand it off. And sometimes you should hand it off to Goodson, cuz he's real fast, but sometimess--a lot, really--you should give it to the J-Train. Totally give it to the J-Train." (But, oh wait, a boneheaded fan would have yanked Syzmanski about a month ago. Whatever. You get my point.) The t.u. game just proved how good this team should have been all year and wasn't because he was holding them back.

But hey, why am I still arguing this case? So many people agree with me, in fact, that Fran does not get to coach the Aggies anymore.

. . . !!!

Part 3

Apparently--and this is, of course, news to me--I tell a lot of grandiose Aggie stories. Is it my fault that we have the largest dining hall in the entire country (second-largest in the world), or that our Dixie Chicken on Northgate sells more beer per square foot than any other bar on Earth, or that our ability of any group of Aggies anywhere to perform unison yells approaches the appearance of mass mind-meld?

No. No it is not.

Yet I am subject to completely unfair mockery by my gentleman caller, such as that in the following exchange:
Gentleman Caller: So, I thought that when Fran got fired, your ring would glow red, and maybe a holograph of Reveille would appear, and he--
me: She.
Gentleman Caller: --she would speak in this commanding voice and tell you that Fran had stepped down. That was what I was expecting. . . . But instead it was a text message from your dad.
me: Which is also magical in its own way.
Gentleman Caller: True.

Part 4

Ah, the future. What a lovely place it might turn out to be. At least now there's hope. Hope is great.

Sadly, the near future is marred by the promise of Gary Darnell coaching the bowl game. Ugh.

As for the more distant future, if you're expecting coach predictions out of this girl, you are going to be disappointed. Due to a perfect storm of Thanksgiving travel, school busyness, and my near-unshakeable faith in Bill Byrne, I haven't been keeping up with coaching rumors or speculation. Bill Byrne has (at least in my imagination) some incredibly complex calculus of proven ability, promising talent, and price tag, and he's using this equation to hone in on somebody who I may or may not have heard of and who may or may not (hopefully may) be awesome.

This is what I think: I don't care if he "shows emotion," I don't care if he has a funny accent, I don't even care if he has pre-existing Aggie ties. I have two demands of The New Coach: 1. don't cheat 2. win. Seriously. Win some games, man. And by "some" I don't mean 5.5 a year. Give us a shot at some division/conference titles, and you and I will get along.

Gig 'em, New Coach. And gig 'em Aggies.


. . . !!!!!

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Sunday, November 18, 2007

Official Fran Vendetta & Related Miscellany


Well, I guess I jumped the gun. I suppose I was just overly optimistic that'd we would hear real news about the eagerly anticipated Fran firing. Can you blame me? (After all, it is a consummation devoutly to be wished.) I should have held fast to my knowledge that my homeboy Bill Byrne will, like he said he would, give his pronouncement after the season is over.

I just hope that the season is "over" on the day after the day after Thanksgiving, and not after the eBay Minimum Wins Bowl in Pityville, Mississippi. I think it probably will be sooner rather than later, but I do wonder who would coach us in the bowl we will be going to (thanks, bulk of the Big XII North, for continuing to be even worse than us!)

I am surprised that Bill Callahan has lasted this long. I really thought they were ready to pull the trigger there. Way to restrain yourself, Tom Osbourne. (Well, I guess "restraint" is a relative term here.)

It's a little funny that the first Big XII hot-seat coach to go was the one nobody cared enough about to remember to put him on the hot seat list. (Keep your spirits up, Baylor! Maybe people will notice you, someday.)

And, as a final football note, in this season of shocks and surprises, perhaps nothing has taken me aback as far as the fact that . . . I was rooting for Tech last night. Apparently, my drive to root for the underdog is very, very powerful. Also, it helps that I'm totally on the KU bandwagon, so--take that, Land Thieves!

But, to return to the main point, I'd like to start a countdown to the Great Fran Firing of 2007, but I can't decide how optimistic to be. I'd like to think it'll come on the 24th, but it might be a Lloyd Carr-style wait until the business week actually starts. How about this: we're at T-6 days if the Ags run out of time to t.u., T-8 if the Ags Beat The Hell Outta t.u.

Good? Good.
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Clearly, the Ladies Should Not Touch Frankie Valli with a Ten-to-Thirty Foot Pole

I do enjoy me some Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. Admittedly, it's in large part because I find them hilarious. I mean, they couple that classic Fifties earnestness with the ludicrous high-pitched harmonies--it's great. However, the subject matter of the songs belies the sweetly innocent sound of them. Taking for instance the lyrics of the songs on their greatest hits CD, one finds that the stories they tell are pretty dark. (And please forgive me for the punctuation that doesn't really make sense.)

Several songs are in the "I'm really sorry we can't be together" genre:
. . . because I'm too poor ("Dawn [Go Away]")
. . . because you're too poor ("Rag Doll")
. . . because you love somebody else more than you love me, so stop staying with me out of pity ("Opus 17 [Don't You Worry 'Bout Me]")
. . . because I'm married ("Bye Bye Baby [Baby Goodbye]")

They visit the always-fruitful song-mine of "My dad told me to stop being such a pansy and letting you treat me like dirt": ("Walk Like a Man")

And, conversely, "I hope you'll take me back after you dumped me for treating you like dirt": ("Working My Way Back to You") and the similar "I hope you'll take me back after you dumped me for cheating on you (but it was meaningless, I swear!): ("C'mon Marianne"), and of course, "I'll generously forgive you for dumping me (after thinking--mistakenly!--that I had cheated on you): ("Ronnie")

There's the extremely popular "It was pretty awesome that one time I had sex with that chick I didn’t know": ("December 1963 [Oh What a Night!]")

Then there's "I dumped you just to prove a point, but then, unfortunately for me, you took it really well": ("Big Girls Don't Cry")

Sure, there are a few songs about being in love and all happy, but on balance, these songs are either very pitiful or very jerkwaddy. It's somewhat mystifying how they can be so catchy!
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Friday, November 16, 2007

Another Great Headline

As I have mentioned before, I enjoy reading headlines. I like to see the use of unusual verbs, or a way to put something that's efficient, yet evocative . . . but clearly, it can be hilarious to just get straight to the point:

"Mr. Magorium is really, really bad"

Well put, CNN. Well put.
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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Broadcaster Rumble?

Have you been watching the Sunday night football pre-game show on NBC, "Football Night in America"? It's a stupid name, but that's not what I'm going to expound upon here. This is what I'm wondering: is it just me, or does Chris Collinsworth haaaaaaate Keith Olbermann?

Maybe I'm imagining it, but it seems like every time Olbermann says anything, Collinsworth replies snidely/angrily (thinly disguised as "jokingly." We've all done that, right? We have a really annoying aquaintance, everything they say just cheeses us off, but it's not socially acceptable to call them an idiot to their face, so you pretend to inject humor into . . . calling them an idiot).

Also, I'm 75% sure that when Costas threw it over to "Olber-time," Collinsworth actually sneered. Sneered.

So, has anybody else noticed this? If not, keep your eyes open, and maybe you will.
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People Kept Ringing the Bell!

I've never bought the whole "Seinfeld was the greatest thing that ever happened in the history of television!!!!!!!", but I do really like this bit:
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Thursday, November 8, 2007

Schadenfreude!

Poor ol' Billy (and his new team) got, in the words of Some Guy from Fox Sports, "completely dominated" by Gardner-Webb University (no, I haven't heard of it, either), and as you can see from the graph (courtesy [if, by courtesy, I mean "totally stolen from"] ESPN), that guy is correct.


He also thinks Billy was the wrong handshake man for the job, anyway.

Boo, and may I add, hoo.

(I guess I'll also add a "tee" and a "hee.")
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Tuesday, November 6, 2007

A Very Minor Point about Churches

In my day, I've read several different "You Might Be a [insert Protestant denomination here] If . . ." lists. They all, all, include something about how important you think food or potlucks or covered dishes or whatever are.

Helpful hint for all you Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, Baptists, etc. out there: everybody likes food just as much as you do. Yeah. I'm not saying you're not, like, special; I'm just saying that . . . uh . . . that's part of what binds us all, no matter what brand of Christian, together. That and Jesus. Food and Jesus. Yep.
Click here to read more . . .

Official Fran Vendetta: Day the Last?

There have been all kinds of reports stewing today on the internet, and on ESPN itself (see video below), and here's a good summary/the latest report:

"A&M officials plan to seek a buyout agreement with Franchione, but athletic department and administration sources, while confirming plans to change coaches, say it's not clear how far those negotiations have gone."

Of course, when a story contains a quote like "Because of the sensitive nature of the situation, the sources have requested anonymity," I think you have to keep waiting for the other shoe--the official shoe--to drop.

Don't worry, I'll be monitoring the situation closely. Any official reports will be reported, and then jubilantly celebrated, here.

Click here to read more . . .

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Official Fran Vendetta: Day 43

Well, I told myself I was going to stop posting so much about Fran. (I mean, he's basically a dead man walking, right? Right???) But I had to write an email to a guy who works at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and since I already put the work in anyway, I decided I'd share.

Here is his stupid article. (It's so stupid.)

And here is my response:

Hi Gil,

I've never written a letter to a newspaper writer before, but your article today has moved me to say--are you kidding me?

The idea that Aggies shouldn't be rooting for our team to lose today is fair enough. No coaching, no matter how poor, is enough reason to root against the team. As all of us know, they're good kids with heart, guts, moxie . . . why, every adjective in the moxie family.

But to suggest that those of us who want Franchione fired are only basing that on the fact that he hasn't won a national championship is preposterous. To think that we are furious at his performance as A&M's coach because he hasn't beaten top ten opponents on the road is frankly insulting. We want him fired not just because he's had too many losses, but too many humiliating losses. Too many losses that are the direct result of his piss poor playcalling. Too many losses because he can't develop talent in promising players or capitalize on the players that are already, by the grace of God, well developed.

Why do you expect us to be happy with the Cotton Bowl in 2004 and the Holiday Bowl in 2006 when he lost both of those games by more than four touchdowns? Why do you expect us to be hunky-dory with three losses to Texas because of one win against them in one of the worst played games (by both sides) in college football history? Do you honestly expect that we should forgive and forget the numerous blowout losses and the too-close wins over far inferior teams because at some point, ever, we had kind of a comparable record to Texas? Do you really think that we should ignore the five lousy-to-middling seasons he's had at A&M because he somehow managed to pull off being decent in the short run at TCU and Alabama?

If, somehow, the Aggies win tonight, I'll be delighted. However, I will not take it to mean that Dennis Franchione has suddenly become a great coach. I've been watching the man's performance for five years, and he is not. He's not even a good coach; he's mediocre at best. While I don't expect the Ags to win the national title every year--or the Big XII title--or even the Big XII South title--my university and my team deserve better than that.


Gig 'em,
Rachel Campbell
Click here to read more . . .

Friday, November 2, 2007

I Think it's the Voice

I know it's been brought up in this space before, but I'd just like to emphasize it one more time--lots and lots of people have a thing for Alan Rickman.

This becomes startlingly apparent anytime one searches for "Alan Rickman" on Facebook--155 groups, people. One hundred and fifty-five. (For reference, there are 208 for Patrick Dempsey [not that I think he's particularly attractive, but he's moderately popular right now] and only 9 for the guy who plays Henry the Accountant on Ugly Betty. Colin Firth beats Alan Rickman with 175, one of which is named "It's Too Bad Colin Firth Has 3 Kids, Cuz I Could Definitely Handle Him Just Being Married." Sadly, that group only has three members.)

But it's not so much about the numbers as the themes of these Alan Rickman groups. Here's a sampling:

Alan Rickman is sexy!

Alan Rickman is really, really sexy and I don't care if he's old!

Alan Rickman Could Make a Dictionary Sound Sexy

Alan Rickman is a Dead Sexy Beast (1,451 members)

I wish Alan Rickman would love me back!

Alan Rickman Can Impregnate By Touch Alone (837 members)

Alan Rickman Gives Me Unrealistic Ideas About Love

alan rickman is the sex

I want to have Alan Rickman's babies

. . . and others that are dirtier than I feel prudent to repeat here.

(There are also four Alan Rickman Appreciation Societies, so I'm pretty sure that three people ripped off Nancy's group idea.)

There's also "Alan Rickman is older than..." which informs us that, indeed, Alan Rickman is older than the following:
Alaska. Hawaii.DNA's double helix.Styrofoam.Disneyland.The Cold War.(Electronic) Calculators.Decolonization.Recycling as an institution.Wite-Out.Civil Rights in the US.Scientology.PiƱa Coladas.The reign of Elizabeth II.Sputnik.The Superbowl.Conventional porn.World trade.Human Rights.Red China.Australian, Canadian citizenship.The Emmy Awards.Snow in Los Angeles.CIA, DOD, JCS, NSC, US Air Force.Female suffrage in Japan.Bikinis.Apartheid.Bulgaria.France's FOURTH and fifth republics.Antihistamine.Official end of WWII.Tupperware.James Bond.Transistors.Frisbees.AK-47s.Microwave ovens.The completed periodic table.A world without Prussia.Breaking the sound barrier."Under God" in the pledge.New Jersey state constitution.World health.The deutsche mark.McDonalds.Oral contraceptives.Mr. Potato-head.Superglue.Austria.Hula-hoops.Barbie.Creamer.Too many lyrics in Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start the Fire"Multiculturalism.ROCK & ROLL

....and yet you would still have his babies. We see no problem with that. Furthermore, we're right here with you.


Another of my personal favorites is "I can't wait to watch Alan Rickman kill Dumbledore" which does not reflect on Alan Rickman's desirability, but more than makes up for it by featuring this picture:


Oh, how that picture makes me laugh.

Click here to read more . . .

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Boo!

As promised--pumpkins.



Here's me with my Strong Bad (the red in his mouth is just the candle).


And here's my gentleman caller with a more classic jack-o-lantern.


My Strong Bad took me much labor and hardship. Neal's jack-o-lantern took good ol' fashioned knifing. Both have their strong points.

For instance, my Strong Bad's face has kind of wilted. Oh well. It's not like I've gotten any trick-or-treaters anyway.

More mini-Twix for me!
Click here to read more . . .

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I KNOW!

I'll admit it--I'm a Monica.


I'm not free-spirited enough to be a Phoebe; I'm not a boy-crazy daddy's girl like Rachel. But more importanty, I am a bit compulsive, a little too prone to perfectionism (you don't even want to know how long it takes me to compose these posts), all about the babies, and unfortunately, too hung up on winning and being right. I know, more than Monica seems to most of the time, that's it's pretty insufferable for the people around you if you too often trumpet your own rightness.

Still, on some occasions, I can't help but say it.

Because you know what?


I was right.

I can say that it's Day 38 of my vendetta, but in actuality, I've been shaking my head in disbelief at the people on the FranWagon since I watched the news conference that was held the day he was hired at Texas A&M.

I was right on that morning of December 5th, 2002, that the man was classless and no good.

I was right all through the nightmare of the 2003 season that he was a terrible coach.

People kept saying that it was that he didn't have his players yet. R.C. Slocum had "left the cupboard bare"; Fran needed guys who were on board with "his system."

Then it became that one recruiting class, two recruiting classes, wasn't enough. It had to be all of them. Any player so much as looked at by R.C. Slocum had to graduate. Then it would finally be Fran's year. I didn't believe them.

Those people were wrong.

I was right.

We were supposedly turning a corner in 2004. We . . . at least got to a bowl game. But we were promised somebody who might give us one bad year, followed by a really really good one--not an OK one. I didn't think he deserved an extremely lucrative contract extension.

Bill Byrne was wrong.

I was right.

Thanks to yet another mediocre season (which, natch, I saw coming), on top of which has been thrown this whole stupid VIP Connection thing (admittedly, not as obvious to predict), now everybody sees it. The media keeps telling me that Fran should be fired.

Gee, really?

Despite my being Monica, I wish I had been wrong. Five years of mediocre football for a school whose students, alumni, and fans take such pride in their traditions and love their football so desperately--that isn't worth it to save me from being wrong. I would have LOVED to have been wrong.

But I was right.
Click here to read more . . .

Harry Potter Mania Lives On!

People scoffed at the idea that websites like my own personal Harry Potter favorite, Mugglenet, could keep going strong once the series was complete. Ha! Little did they know that such sites would continue to churn out all-important updates like . . . the DVD of the movie version of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix being released in Chile.

In your face, scoffers!
Click here to read more . . .

Friday, October 26, 2007

An Ode

When everything around me
is dull and dark and gray
When cold and ice and wind and frost
hound me through the day
When sweaters are inadequate ,
When longjohns fail to please,
I ache to return to you--
you never let me freeze.

You make my room so cozy
You make my life so bright
Blankets can’t compare to you
On a chill Wisconsin night
How could I brave the temperatures?
How could I stand the snow?
Without you to revive me--?
I never want to know.

I promise we’ll go on like this,
me cherishing you so
I’m so thankful that I found you
At Wal-Mart, ten months ago.
I knew it then, I know it now:
In truth--there’s nothing sweeter
than to bask
in the warming range
of my dear space heater.
Click here to read more . . .

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

As If Anyone Asked . . .

Here's what I think about the Great Wizard Sexuality Brouhaha of 'Aught-Seven.

Part 1

I read an article from Time this morning called "Put Dumbledore Back in the Closet." The article is written by a gay man whose basic argument is that the way Dumbledore's sexuality was (non-)presented in the Harry Potter books is a worse representation of homosexuals than if Jo had left the Harry Potter world gay-free (as it seemed to be). As he writes:

Shouldn't I be happy to learn he's gay? Yes, except: Why couldn't he tell us himself? The Potter books add up to more than 800,000 words before Dumbledore dies in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and yet Rowling couldn't spare two of those words—"I'm gay"—to help define a central character's emotional identity? We can only conclude that Dumbledore saw his homosexuality as shameful and inappropriate to mention among his colleagues and students. His silence suggests a lack of personal integrity that is completely out of character.

At first glance, this seems to be a good point. However, when you look at it in the context of the Harry Potter series, particularly Harry's relationship to Dumbledore, it's frankly nonsense.

First of all, one of the refrains of Book 7 is Harry's complaint that Dumbledore never told Harry anything about himself. If Dumbledore never told Harry about his little sister, about his imprisoned father, about the brother Harry had met, why in the world should we be insulted, much less surprised, that Dumbledore never told Harry he was gay?

Now, consider this: Hagrid is straight. Snape is straight. . . . Other than that (the latter of which was unconfirmed until page 663 of Book 7), there is no mention of the romantic leanings or entanglements of any of the adults Harry knows at Hogwarts. Does Professor MacGonagall have a husband? A boyfriend? A life partner? A vow of celibacy? Who knows? There's not so much as a hint in the books. By and large, the lives of his teachers are just not something that impinges on the story of Harry.

Similarly, how do we know, as the article author states, that Dumbledore had no love life and "remained celibate" the entire rest of his life? How do we even know Dumbledore didn't tell his colleagues? Maybe he and Sybill Trelawney banter about boys all the time. We, the readers, are usually only privy to knowledge Harry himself has access to. Sure, he picks up stray bits and pieces of teacher-only conversation, thanks to the handy invisibility cloak, but those usually relate to--you know--the plot of the book.

Which brings me to another point--where was Dumbledore's sexuality supposed to fit in? I ask you, my readers: where would it have made sense to slip in this bit of information? As far as I can see, it's just not relevant to the story. Why would it matter to Harry that Dumbledore is gay? How would that change anything?

The only place it even kinda-sorta comes up is Dumbledore's "friendship" with the dark wizard Grindelwald. But in that respect, the Dumbledore-Grindelwald fight is not parallel to the Harry-Voldemort fight that Dumbledore tries to prepare Harry for. If it were Ginny or Ron that Harry had to take down to save the world, then maybe some cautionary words from Dumbledore about love blinding you to the truth that even cute people can be evil . . . then maybe. But as it stands, it's one of the least important things Dumbledore could have bothered to impart to his young apprentice.


Part 2

In response to my initial post about this topic, MacKenzie made a good point (better, really, than the one the guy from Time did).

I don't think [J. K.] gets how writing a book works. You write it, include what you want then ...LET IT GO. One of my favorite parts of books is that I get to use my imagination and add to the story myself, once the story ends, it is up to ME and now she is all up in my face telling me that this person does this and this person is like that.

This, I think, raises a question less about content than about storytelling itself. With science fiction/fantasy franchises, you hear a lot about "canon." Canon is what's official, what's "real," in any particular fictional universe. Anything in the Star Wars films is canon; anything in Star Wars comic books or novels (or *shudder* fan fiction) is not--it's only as "true" as any particular reader wants it to be at the time. This means, unfortunately, that the much cooler version of how Luke came to be raised by Owen and Beru Lars from the novelization of Return of the Jedi has been overridden by the WEAK explanation of Episodes II and III. It's sad, but them's the breaks.

So the question is--are things that J.K. Rowling says now, after all over her words have been committed to the paper of a million trees, considered canon? Is Dumbledore gay, on the plane of Harry Potter reality, because she mentioned it at a couple of book signings?

This is tricky for two reasons. The first is that, allegedly, someday she's going to write some kind of Harry Potter appendix/encyclopedia/something. If she writes it down in there, does that count?

The second and more complicated question is, are the answers that J. K. Rowling is now giving to eager audiences . . . fan fiction? Is what she's doing just a better publicized version of me sitting in front of my computer telling you that I think Neville and Luna will get married and have a bunch of spaced-out babies?

I think there are two possible answers: 1) No, of course not--she created these characters, so she put a whole bunch of thought into them that we never saw on paper. There's background there, informing what all the characters are doing; she just didn't have space to write it all in. 2) Yes, because if it's not printed, if it wasn't important enough to make its way onto the page, then we as readers can't be held accountable for believing it. If she didn't care enough about some of her ideas to make them "fact" by publishing them, then they remain ideas; they remain opinion.

So the question becomes: are J. K. Rowling's opinions about her characters more important than mine or yours? I think that's something each reader can decide for him- or herself. I, for instance, like knowing more about Jo's thought processes. After all, I liked the stuff she imagined and put into the books--I'm all for being able to find more of that same product. At the same time, MacKenzie is right that she's not always consistent about these things. That shows that the contents of Things She Says is just not of as high a quality as Things She Wrote.

I like knowing extra tidbits of what J. K. Rowling thinks about the characters she created. But where I disagree with her, I'm perfectly happy to stick with my decision that Neville and Luna live happily ever after.


Part 3

I'm glad Jo announced that she has always thought of Dumbledore as gay.

I think it's interesting. It gives him, and particularly his Grindelwald storyline, more depth. Even though it went hideously, hideously wrong (and Jo hasn't said, for one thing, whether Grindelwald felt the same way about Dumbledore), I prefer characters I like to find romance rather than, well, not to.

As for whether this is some great social stride, I'd have to say it isn't much of one. After all, it's not in the books; as the novels get read over and over, through the march of time, a post-publication revelation is going to have a much shorter shelf life, a much shallower cache, than what is actually printed on the pages. Still, I can't see how it's a bad thing, either for gay bashers or advocates--Dumbledore's gay, take it or leave it, but it's more important for Harry Potter that he's a good wizard, a good teacher, and a good person.
Click here to read more . . .

Monday, October 22, 2007

Pumpkins!

The gentleman caller and I are going to carve pumpkins on Thursday. I'm pretty pumped.

Although my choices are numerous, I think I'm going to have to go with a Strong Bad pumpkin.

Trogdor would be a strong contender, but I've done that before.

(As you can see, my pumpkin skillz, they are mad.)

Click here to read more . . .

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Breaking Harry Potter News!

(By the time you read this, maybe it'll be old, broken news, but oh well.)
Angela just tipped me off that--wait for it--Dumbledore is gay.

I really did not see that one coming. It's true that you don't see Dumbledore taking any interest in the ladies, but I just figured it was because he was too dedicated and lofty and whatnot. You know, like Obi-Wan Kenobi--all work and no play (so to speak).

But just because I wasn't expecting it doesn't mean it doesn't make sense. It puts that whole Book 7 Grindelwald thing in a different perspective, but not a totally jarring one. And while I'm not going to go for the easy jokes about, for instance, Dumbledore's love of jewelry, I will say that being gay jives with his personality. It fits.

As the article mentions, some people won't like this, on moral grounds. I think that's silly, and here's why: 1. It's not even in the books themselves, so it's not like The Children will be reading about homosexuality in there. 2. Following #1, Dumbledore isn't depicted doing or saying anything Sexually Immoral. 3. No matter what anybody thinks of gay people, they exist, and one of the more important themes of Harry Potter is regular people (of all kinds), like those we interact with every day, just happening to be able to do extraordinary things.




It's a good thing I posted my nemesis list, or I would have gotten all preachy two posts in a row.
Click here to read more . . .

Friday, October 19, 2007

Current Nemesis List

My nemeses, as of 10/19/2007:

Sean Cunningham (because he wrote a new biography of Henry VII before I got to, that's why)

That really incompetent, super-stupid guy who works at the circulation desk of my library

Jane Fonda

Coach Fran

Brent Musburger

Shonda Rimes
Click here to read more . . .

Thursday, October 18, 2007

A Post That's Either about Baseball or Racism--Pick Your Favorite!

Everybody's heard that it's 2007, right? The 21st century is old enough to be in second grade now--maybe it knows how to write in cursive. So raise your hand if you don't have some measure of disbelief that this--

is still the Cleveland Indians' mascot.

Really, Cleveland? Really?

Bob Harris puts it better, and more vehemently, than I am going to do, but his post only reminded me of something I'd already found really obvious.

If any particular Bugs Bunny cartoon contained a caricature like this (and maybe some did), TV stations would have stopped airing it decades ago. If this character were the equivalent depiction of a black or Asian person, it would be long gone. In fact, somebody on the internet made this point visually:

I can't decide whether the weirdest thing is that Native Americans are the one ethnic group that is widely used as a sports mascot or whether it's that--somehow--"Chief Wahoo" has escaped the political correctness smackdown on the worst abuses of Native American mascottage. (Well, them and the Washington Redskins. Seriously, I bet you'd be just as likely to call Native Americans "redskins" to their faces as you would to call a black person the n-word. Think about it.)

Sometimes I think the whole political correctness thing gets out of hand, yes. But I disagree strongly with people who use the term only in a derogatory sense. Political correctness, at its heart, is about respect; respect as mandated by mere common decency. It's about acknowledging that people--no matter their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, etc.--deserve to be understood and appreciated as individual human beings. Not as stereotypes, not as jokes, and not as this.

Click here to read more . . .

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Television Round-Up

Last year, the shows I made time for were 1. (far and away top television priority) House, 2. Grey's Anatomy, and 3. (becoming increasingly important as the season wore on) Ugly Betty. Things have shifted somewhat, so (in particular order) here are my opinions on some shows.

House

I dunno . . . I watched the first two episodes, and it was . . . fine. I didn't watch last week's (which my roommate told me was really good) because I just was entranced enough by the first two to arrange my evening around it.
Clearly, this is a different situation from past seasons.

I'm not quite sure what my deal is. Maybe it's that the ducklings (you know, Chase, Cameron, and Foreman) weren't in them enough. Maybe it's because I feel like they're going the wrong direction, adding new apprentice doctors instead of exploring the interesting and underdeveloped characters they already have.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not breaking up with House. I'm just not as invested as I'm used to being. So we'll see.


America's Next Top Model

I'm not going to tell you that America's Next Top Model is a good show. It isn't.

It has the standard reality show staples: unrealistically catty people shoved into a house together, "challenges," eliminations, and incredible host vanity. And I must say, in that last category, ANTM excels. The force of Tyra Banks' ego could power a medium-sized city.

But what really sets ANTM apart is the ridiculousness. Let's start with the fact that it's about modeling. Modeling and reality are not, as you may be aware, close associates. But ANTM is even operating in the universe of the modeling industry. The winners of the show don't actually get to become top models . . . they're too old, they look weird, and if they had the ability to become models, they wouldn't have to go on the show.

My favorite part is the stupid photo shoots that they do. Tonight's theme? "Super-duper high fashion gargoyles." I invite you to read that phrase one more time.

Plus, they get coached by ludicrous people, like that time they got taught how to twirl by professional twirlers--not baton-twirling, mind you. Twirling around. Like, spinning. Professional twirlers. And tonight, they were told how to pose while jumping on trampolines by, as his caption told us, "Benny Ninja: posing instructor."

My gentleman caller is earning all kinds of points watching this show.


Ugly Betty

SO GOOD!

Hilarious, engaging, interesting . . . I don't know what else to say.

I mean, it's just so good.











Carpoolers


I don't care, I'm just going to say it. This show is funny. It's stupid, but on purpose, which is always key. The characters are caricatures, but well-drawn ones. My favorite one is Dull White Guy's son, who is basically an extroverted Napoleon Dynamite. He makes me laugh.




On a final tv-related note, Dean Cain apparently is guest starring on Smallville this week. How did that take so long?
Click here to read more . . .

Keeping Up With My Correspondence

Dear dudes who roll up their right pants leg while bicycling to keep it from getting caught in the chain,

Hey, here's an idea--once you get off the bike, roll it back down.

Love,
Rachel

* * * * * * * *

Dear people who just spit on the ground, as if that's acceptable,

Are you kidding with this? STOP IT.

Love,
Rachel

* * * * * * * *

Dear that albino lady who rides my bus,

Your hair is so great. I mean, it's not like hair that's white because of age, not a snow white; it's like vanilla ice cream. It's so pretty. I mean, my condolences on being an albino, I suppose, but my point is, there's an upside.

Love,
Rachel
Click here to read more . . .

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

While I Was Out . . .

Now, I'm not going to pretend that, when I quit the internet, I totally quit the internet. For one thing, it would be a justifiably fireable offense for me not to check my email. I'm a TA, it was exam week--several of my students would have had heart attacks.

Otherwise, my most significant form of cheating came through my Google News page. The justification: it's news! It's good for me! Of course, since I have some personalized categories, one of which is Texas A&M, that was the principal way I was able to keep up with the continually unfurling FRANDAL!. But I'll come back to that later.

A similar justification was used for my keeping up with blonde Republican banter and a random musing. Keeping up with my friends; why, that's just a courtesy. I even made the concession of not leaving comments on said blogs--that's good, right?

I also glanced at a few very small things on Television Without Pity. . . . I'm not going to pretend I have any excuse for that.

But the point is, I cut down on my internet consumption by a huge fraction. Here's some of what I missed (most of which I haven't caught up with yet, because I'm trying not to internet-binge):


6 cartoons on xkcd, including this hilarious one:


9 news stories on Mugglenet

10 posts at Blonde Champagne

11 birthdays on Facebook (which reminds me . . . Happy [belated] Birthday, Craig!)

41 answers & rambles at my Gargoyles website, Ask Greg (an unusally high number for a two-week span--Greg's been hard at work, apparently)

51 fuggings

and angry posts without number on TexAgs


Ah . . . the internet.
Click here to read more . . .

Monday, October 15, 2007

A Tudor Memo

From the desk of Henry the Eighth, by the Grace of God, King of England and France, Defender of the Faith and Lord of Ireland

25 June 1530


Hey everyone,

I hope you all enjoyed your weekend. Casual Friday sure was a hoot, wasn't it? However, some of us took things a bit too far (I won't name names, but someone whose name rhymes with Bardinal Folsey should have kept his tights on under his pantaloons), so Casual Friday is being discontinued in perpetuity.

But on to business.

I know that this whole "divorce" thing has been keeping us very busy for quite a while. Would I have liked to have it all settled by now? Sure. Am I pointing fingers at people who haven't been working hard enough on this? Absolutely not. (Although someone whose name rhymes with Tardinal Molsey was apparently exaggerating how tight he was with the Pope. Not that it matters; really, it's all water under the bridge.)

Fortunately, I've found a solution. Of course, I don't mean to brag, but this idea I've come up with is quite a doozy. (It's amazing what my mind can do when I just sit and really think about things, isn't? First my Assertio, and now this. If you don't mind me saying so, wow. Just wow.)

Are you ready?

Wait for it . . .

Bigamy.

It's great! Everybody wins! Catherine, who's been a valuable member of the team for 20 years now (notwithstanding God's obvious judgement for our connubial crimes against Him), gets to keep her position. She'll even get to split the arduous duties of queenship--which she's been a real sport about--with a, if you will, "buddy." Mary gets to stay my #1 gal. And, best of all, we can bring in a new, dynamic, fresh face who will, by the grace of God Almighty, bear me male issue.

I am--as always!--eager to hear your feedback. Don't worry, I've already been sending out feelers in various directions on the Continent. We should focus all of our attention on this, because I think it's a real winner!

Go get 'em, tigers!
HENRICUS OCTUS REX ANGLIAE

PS: I'm sure this goes without saying, but let's just keep this between ourselves on the Council for now. It's early days yet, so let's keep it quiet.


cc: Anne Boleyn
Click here to read more . . .

Monday, October 1, 2007

Try Not to Be Too Distraught . . .

FYI, I'm quitting the internet for the next 2 weeks. I've got too much school to do. As much as I enjoy posting my opinions on dumb things and football, it always takes a fairly large chunk of time for me to do.


I'll be back on roughly the 16th to tell you what I think about the new season of House, the rollercoaster that is college football, and any other topic of grave import that demands my attention.


Until then, here's a picture of Clancy covered in $2 bills.


Click here to read more . . .