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Friday, January 16, 2004
Don't tread on quicksand
Exerpted from "A Boy's Own Book of Outdoor Sports":
How to tread water
This is employed when the swimmer wishes to raise his head as high out of the water as possible, and is particularly useful if he is reconnoitering, or if he is trying to save a drowning person, or if he wishes to grasp a bough or a rope above his head. The best method of making the stroke is as follows: Keep the body perpendicular, and make precisely the same stroke with the legs as is done in ordinary swimming. This action will keep the head freely out of the water, and if assisted by the hands the body will rise as far as the shoulders.
Some persons literally "tread" the water, striking each foot alternately as if they were ascending a staircase. We have thoroughly tried both methods, and much prefer the former.
Caveats: Does not always work in quicksand, relationships, in certain work situations or among family members during the holidays.
Thursday, January 15, 2004
Movies this week...
This has nothing to do with movies (except that she's been in a few of them), but I just downloaded the new Courtney Love single "Mono" (The "Explicit Version" of course) from iTunes and... wow. Let's just say I'm rocking out at work as much as my office chair will allow.
Also, I used to link to the movies list that I compile which appears on statesman.com, but because they're not on there this week (nor am I sure that they will be in the future with their new redesign) and because you now have to register to read stuff there, well... we're gonna forego that this week.
Along Came Polly: This is a tough one because on its face, there's nothing objectionable about this movie. Ben Stiller often brings the funny, most recently on Curb Your Enthusiasm. (Although for a variety of reasons I won't go into right this second, his appearances on that show haven't really worked. It has to do with that Ben Stiller does the funny/serious scthick so much that on Curb it feels really obvious.) Jennifer Aniston has redeemed her myriad of film crimes with her very good performance in The Good Girl. So why does this movie feel like a tired, charmless version of Forces of Nature? Why isn't Ben Stiller writing his own projects anymore? Where's Owen Wilson? This movie just feels muddled and unnecessary (let's not even go into Duplex, which disappeared faster than a newspaper listing for an actual duplex). Maybe I'll be proven wrong and this will become a comedy classic, but... aw, who are we kidding? It probably sucks gangrenous donkey balls.
The Cooler: I had a cute little joke in the newspaper about how William H. Macy plays a human jinx in this movie, but not the human Jinx that Halle Berry played in the last James Bond movie. All right, maybe it wasn't a great joke, but I get my little digs in print when I can. I really wish I could link to that. Man. Sigh. Anyway, we have a tape of this floating around the office that I haven't gotten to watch yet, but it doesn't seem like anyone is particularly blown away by this movie. The acting looks fine, but the biggest complaint I've heard (if you can call it that) is that Alec Baldwin recycles his persona from Glengary Glen Ross. At least he's not recycling his character from Cat in the Hat.
Monster: This movie is getting a lot of press because of Charlize Theron's pretty freakin' amazing transformation from slim hottie to low-down skank. Need I remind everyone that Brittany Murphy makes this transformation almost every day? Where's her Golden Globe nomination? This movie is about a low-down skank who is a highway prostitute (instead of "call girl" would you call that a "turn signal girl"?) who gets raped and then goes on a rampage killing several men in her path. She also sleeps with Christina Ricci, but then, who hasn't in the movies? This movie looks very depressing, but it will attract make-up artists everywhere who hope to one day make Julia Roberts look this fugly.
Teacher's Pet: This is based on a TV cartoon that I've never seen, but the artwork looks very cool and stylish (in a drawn-down, low-tech kind of way) and Disney sent me a little stuffed animal of the main character, who looks like he should be on a Paul Frank T-shirt, so this movie is all right by me. Want me to love your movie? Send me a plush toy.
To Be and To Have: I made a lame joke in our internal budget about how this movie shouldn't be confused with "To Have and to Hold" or "To Be or Not To Be" or "To Have and Have Not." Then I felt guilty when I found out that this is a wee slip of a documentary about cute-as-a-damn-button children in a French classroom. That's really it. But when I saw the photos and realized what a little heart-tugging this movie must be... well, you're not gonna find any snark about it here. Let's move on. (Sniff.) What? That's just allergies in my eyes. Move on.
Torque: Again, I can't link to what I wrote, but here it is in its entirety: "Want revenge on the wings of a brawny motorcycle? Torque! If you have a problem, if you no one else can help and if you can find him, maybe you can hire Torque. Torque!" It's funnier if you read it out loud at high volumes.
Coral Reef Adventure: At some point, IMAX is going to run out of sweeping nature shit to film in large format, so you're going to see, "Carl's Garage Exploration" and "Wobble Wheel: Journey Down a Supermarket Aisle." And you know what? That shit is going to be thrilling.
DVDs: I did a little girly squeal earlier today because Lost in Translation just arrived. Also finishing up watching the first disc of the Tenacious D. set and finishing up Scarface. Also need to watch Tokyo Godfathers and Alice in Wonderland for future reviews. Oh, here's something I can link to: My review of the Curb Your Enthusiasm first season DVDs. It's fantastic, if you haven't seen the show.
Wednesday, January 14, 2004
Don't take it personally
Scientists, working in close collaboration with your family and friends, have concluded that you are going to die.
This is not a general announcement. It refers to you specifically.
It will probably happen sooner than you think and not in the manner you expect. It might be painful. Sorry about that.
The same rules apply: This doesn't mean you should stop drinking water or exercising or that you should start having unprotected sex and drowning your fear of imminent death with carbs. Continue as you were. Try not to think about it.
But... um... on your way out? Would you mind cleaning up a bit? Just pick up the laundry off the floor, dump those empty pizza boxes in the Dumpster and sweep up the kitchen. Also? The bathroom trash cans? Yeah, empty those out, too.
We didn't want to have to ask when you just got diagnosed or after you got hit by that bus. Besides, you probably wouldn't have been in the spirit to do that stuff anyway.
Thanks. And have a lovely death.
Tuesday, January 13, 2004
L'il Floaty Omie Head goes to Chicago, freezes his line art caricature nose off and eats really, really, really good freakin' pizza. Also, a double Cheeseborger. Fun, fun trip.
Monday, January 12, 2004
I don't feel the slightest bit creative or funny today. I used it all up in Chicago, which was wonderful, but physically exhausting. All that cold weather, lack of sleep, the flights. Gah. I'm coasting here on brain fumes.
Work also stacked up, like it inevitably does, in such a way that my to-do list has become a self-fulfilling won't-do list. It just pains me to look at all those bulleted items.
So I'll tell you about my new couch. I'm an adult now, in case I haven't mentioned it. For the first time in my life, I have a couch purchased with real money (split two-ways, but still: It's at least half mine) that isn't a futon or a thicker futon or a hand-me-down sofa that predates my high school years.
A real couch. Delivered with my dad's truck to my home. Feet screwed on. Plastic removed to reveal red cushions. The pee-futon is no more. Long live the fluffy red sofa!
Oscar likes it, too
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