Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Cut!

Uh, OK, this is kind of weird.

Monday morning, NPR and AP reported Ingmar Bergman died. Aside from having a name close to Ingred Bergman (the also Swedish film star who shared no relation to Bergman), he was, of course, a revolutionary film maker. If you believe Woody Allen, he was the best thing to happen to film since the invention of the camera.

Then I look on The Times' Web site this morning, and what do I see but Michelangelo Antonioni also kicked the bucket yesterday.

Kind of creepy. Too bad Fellini and Kurosawa are already pushing daisies.

Although I imagine my film professor is wearing a black armband, and will continue to do so until... Eternity.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Buy now to save CASH on your low APR car loan! If you want to be like Brendan, you'll shop at...

Just saw this in my feeds: NFL to require pro shooters to advertise Canon, Reebok.

Here's the NPPA's response.

Apparently this isn't new. From the CNET.com article:
The [Wall Street Journal] article also quoted Pete Cross, photography managing editor for The Palm Beach Post in Florida, as saying photographers wore Tostitos-branded vests inside-out in protest this year at the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.
Go protestors! Boo shilling for companies! I mean, I've read how Canon had reps at the Olympics, wandering around to the people who shot Nikon, etc., and offering to let them test digital Canon equipment, but the NFL making shooters advertise?

Plus, does the NFL, Canon and Reebok really expect that many people to stare at shooters during the game? I mean, sometimes you see them on television, but usually the camera focuses on the players... The game.

Why not make the players run around with big billboards taped to their helmets?

Screw you, NFL.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Not really the person you want representing you on national radio

I just heard a soundbyte on NPR from a woman who said "I still do support the war because it keeps us Americans free and keeps those muslims out of our country."

It's good to see ignorance hasn't completely died in this wonderful society..

But really, NPR? That's who you're picking to show the pro-war side of American public opinion?

Sent from my iPhone

Just look at the picture with this link,

(then tell me you don't want to see the movie)
=
I want to see this. Sunshine. A science fiction story about a dying sun and a ship sent to give it a big ol' needle of adrenaline -- in the form of a nuclear bomb to its core.

Sounds like classic scifi, updated to include svelte CGI and modern direction (the director did 28 Days Later, too. And while that was a pretty freaky movie, I don't think Sunshine will be as scary).

I'm surprised I hadn't heard of this movie. If The Times is to be believed, it's not a limited release.

Viva scifi!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Frequent-flyer miles

Man can you imagine this guy's day?

He's been appointed the second-youngest conductor of the New York Philharmonic, to take effect in the 2009-2010 season.

He'll be "splitting his time" between the NY Philharmonic, the Swedish Royal Stockholm Philharmonic -- where he's been chief conductor since 1999 -- and the Hamburg NDR Symphony Orchestra -- where he's chief guest conductor.

So basically he'll be flying over the Atlantic a lot, and when he deplanes he'll be going to conduct an orchestra. That's like the easiest job in the world.

I wish I was haughty and could conduct. That'd be cool. And rich. I'd live in first class, and then be able to sample $400-per-bottle wines when I was staying in my Manhattan loft -- or my Stockholm apartment.

I wonder what he does for a vacation? Certainly it should not involve flying.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Mad, mad, mad, mad men

I am very much looking forward to watching the premier of Mad Men on AMC tomorrow night.

Usually, summer brings a time for network TV to trot out their reality shows (spelling bee, anyone?), or air out old episodes of failed shows (Studio 60), or try out episodes of unproven shows.

But I think, and AP apparently agrees, Mad Men will prove itself rather quickly. Good for it. I loved Hustle (that smart, British show about conmen AMC aired last year). I was sad to see it go. Although I might have forgot to watch it after a while. I wonder if it's still on.

But Mad Men isn't some show ported from across the pond. It's American-made, focusing on one of America's cultural peaks. Before the hippies took over. When America was a superpower and everyone knew it.

When people dressed respectfully, dammit. Ties. Collars. Slacks and jackets. Leather-soled shoes, dammit. Dammit.

Anyway, so that's what I'll be doing tomorrow night at 10.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

The midnight shows, oh how they make my eyes burn the next day

So I think I can stop hating the Harry Potter directors... Well, David Yates, anyway.
Come to think of it, I didn't really mind Christopher Columbus, either. (Yeah, OK, I've tried. I can't call him Chris Columbus. My schooling days automatically at the "topher" to the end of his name. Ah the days when they taught us about the brave explorer who basically f---ed up and brought disease, famine and greed to The New World).

Err, where was I. The new Harry Potter movie, which I saw at midnight. With a bunch of people pretending to be wizards. Or students at Hogwarts. Maybe they just really really liked their graduation robes...

Obviously, the movie differs from the book. Every movie does. But the things they changed, well, I think they made for a solid movie. A very solid movie.

As my friend Pay Abdalla points out in today's Sun, it would have probably been a good idea to explain what the Order of the Phoenix actually was, for anyone not familiar with the books.

But hey, at least it wasn't directed by Alfonso Cuaron -- he who "inspired" Mike Newell to cut Goblet of Fire from the planned double header to just one film. Oh Alfonso, how I do so loathe you.

Anyway, good movie. Good acting. Good writing. But I'd agree with those critics who said it definitely feels like "Page Five of Seven."

Now to reread my copy of The Half-Blood Prince before next Friday, where I'll go and stand in line with more graduation-robe enthusiasts.

Oh look, Daniel Radcliffe is on Today. Actually, if you get the chance, try and find a copy of Monday's Tonight Show -- Radcliffe is the guest, and he's really quite funny.

"So now you've got all this dough... what are you going to do with it?" Jay Leno asked, about Radcliffe's earnings as a star of five films and a (weird, horse-iphile) play.
"Dough? Like make bread?" Radcliffe quizzically responded.

I guess the Brits don't call their currency dough. Also great when he mentioned filming "the fourth movie," and immediately scolding himself. "Fourth?! We've done five, Dan!"

But yeah, good movie all around. Plus, I got a look at the Get Smart trailer. (Warning: since Apple hasn't put up the trailer yet, that link points to a reportedly annoying, streaming MSN video. Also, since it's first on MSN, I can't help but be horrified to wonder if that means it won't be going up over at Apple/trailers...)

Now that's a movie I'm looking forward to seeing.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Life imitates art?

A real-life Jigsaw killer?

This happened a while ago. I only found out about it because I was trawling the state wire this morning.

This kid walks into a bank in Erie, with a crude metal collar around his neck, bomb attached. He robs the bank, and gets outside, where police are waiting. They find out what's what, order a bomb squad, but the kid blows up before they get there.

Police then find instructions in the kid's pocket on what to do with the money, and a sort of scavenger-hunt list of how to get the collar off.

So I'm thinking, did this crazy lady watch Saw? Did the guys behind Saw hear about this? Or is it just a freaky coincidence.

(For the faint-of-heart, the link points to America's Most Wanted. No gruesome pictures, just a lengthy narrative describing the case.

According to The Associated Press -- although I can't find any online paper that ran the story -- prosecutors are days away from indicting the "crazy" lady, who pleaded guilty by mental defect to killing her boyfriend years ago.)

Close to the vest

I've fallen out of my rhythm.

When I moved down here last July, I weighed about 275 pounds. Working at Clark's for six weeks and biking every day dropped that to 215.
Working at The Evening Sun, sitting at my desk or in my car, I've begun to fatten up again.

Plus, I haven't ridden my bike since the fall.
There are five or six spokes broken on the back rim, the chain's really really rusty, and it desperately needs new brakes.
I had to store it outside this past winter. I had no choice.

Plus, even though its less physically demanding than my warehouse job, my current gig just sucks the will right out of me. Or maybe that's just me.

I need to start jogging again. I need to get back in shape. I need to pay my bills, clear my credit cards, fix my bike, eat healthier.

I need to go back to last August/September. Except not with the warehouse job.
I think what I really need is self control. No more candy. No more snacks. No more soda. I would eat a turkey-and-cheese sandwich, an apple and a granola bar every day for lunch.

When I first started at the paper, I cut out the granola bar. Turkey-and-cheese and an apple. And water. Then I would come home, bike for an hour, shower, and start my "evening."

Is it any surprise that I lost so much weight?

But now I'm slipping. I'm eating at Subway or Alex's Pizza when I should have packed a lunch. I figure, I'm a reporter now. Not a warehouse worker. I'm entitled to something.
Apparently I'm just entitled to gain weight.

When I first started, my schedule kind of threw me. I worked 10-6 or 2-10. So I would get up early, exercise and go into work. That sort of worked. But running everyday did something awful to my right hip joint. Listen to me, I'm an old man at the age of 22.

I've said this before, and I've made this promise before. No more junk food. But then lunchtime comes around and I go "mmmm I want some Twizzlers." I know there are worse things to eat, but it doesn't matter if Twizzlers are low in high-fructose corn syrup -- they're still candy.

I think I feel so off because Caitlin was on vacation all last week. And what am I going to do as me? Sit and cook a nice dinner, and make my sandwich every morning? Psh. That's for losers. Of course I had Hot Pockets and frozen pizzas.
Which I ate in the fall, but then only on weekends. One Hot Pocket Friday night, one Saturday night. It was like my reward for working the whole week, not snacking, and exercising like hell.

It all just seems like it's a giant centrifuge, and it's spinning faster and faster and faster, and I'm close to being thrown out. Also, buying Twizzlers and whatnot is denting my funds, man. My funds.

Everytime I sit down to write out a new budget, I get depressed. Or distracted. Both, perhaps.

I just needed to say that.

Monday, July 09, 2007

A partnership unlike any other...

AT&T sent me this e-mail... Well, I mean, "AT&T" sent me an e-mail. It looked on the level, and I didn't give away any personal data I'm worried about. Heck, I could care less if some spambot now knows I think Apple should add a voice memo app to iPhone.

Anyway, so the e-mail just asks for my time in taking a survey. But one of the questions (which asks what my opinions of the apps are) struck me as funny:


You would think AT&T would know Apple didn't put iChat on iPhone... I assume the meant the SMS program, since visually it looks like iChat, but still.

I bet you anything a Windows user wrote the survey...

Friday, July 06, 2007

Oh the ape-ity

It's stories like this that make me feel all good and tingly inside.

When you work in a business where you regularly report on the dregs of society, it's nice to know that, scientifically speaking, deep down, humanity exists, thrives, and overcomes.

Altruism is a noble concept, and it's great to see it's not just a human one. If you're too lazy to click on the link, it's a study about chimps' altruism.

I lede you lede we all lede for.... ledelede?

Hey look, the lede box on NYTimes.com is their blog, (coincidentally named)
The Lede.



That's a big step, I think, for a major media outlet.

Then again, if you've ever read The Lede, you'd know it's a blog in the sense The
Times calls it a blog. It reads like a news piece and there's nothing opiniony about
it.

But maybe that's just my definition of a blog... Who knows.The Shadow
Knows...
Hey, stop that.Sorry

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Oh that three-letter word

Incase the image below fails to load for whatever reason, I will quote the part I find so ludicrous:
"...an unidentified person who got injured during a cross fire..."
This is from a Washington Post cutline. What the hell is up with that? Were there copy editors sleeping this morning? "Got injured?" Are you serious? GOT INJURED?

Plus, I'm pretty sure, no matter what followed "cross fire," the words should be hyphenated... Just my two cents.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Blotting my desk

I've been doing the police log for the past couple weeks while our news clerk is on vacation in England, visiting her daughter and son-in-law.

It's been fun. But here are some of my favorites from today's log:
1858 hrs. A tattoo violation was reported in the 400 block of Broadway where a juvenile allegedly received a tattoo without parental permission. Investigation is continuing.
Invesigation is continuing? Really? Don't you just have to look at the kid's arm, see if there's a tattoo there, ask the kid's parents and bingo bango, you're all investigated out?
12:26 Disordely conduct 1200 block High Street where two juvenile boys were attempting to set fire to a nearby field with fireworks.
Well, at least they were having good, clean, non-felonious fun. Ah, the innocence of youth...