Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Road Less Traveled

I'm clicking Wired down a notch as far as their movie reviews are concerned (not that I ever rated them that highly.

Their "2009 Movie Guide" lists many sci-fi, horror, fantasy movies due out in 2009, but doesn't even mention the one I'm most eager to see: the film version of Cormac McCarthy's The Road.

While it doesn't fit neatly into the traditional "sci-fi" category, it's certainly consistent with the genre and rates at least a sentence or two from a publication that purports to be "cutting edge."
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Monday, December 29, 2008

Go For Broke

I found the New Yorker's "Cartoon Capture Contest" #173 winners to be mostly bankrupt of any humor.

I'm partial, but I liked my entry better than any of the finalists. It was on target, but not TOO obvious:
"What color was Fred's parachute."
The "winners" were as subtle as getting hit on the head with a safe.
  • "Who would have thought they'd actually give money to a bank!" - that's funny??

  • "At the next bailout, let's also ask for a pony." - ha ha ha (fake laughing)

  • "Did you send your thank-you card to Congress?" - they've GOT to be picking them out of a hat

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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Oh No They Didn't!

Eat your heart out Patriot fans. The Lions make NFL history with their own "perfect" season and don't break ANY rules!

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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Taken to Task

Wow. Someone really took issue with the fact that I wasn't taking the GapFlix service which promises goal realization through video serious enough in one of my posts:

You apparently weren't paying attention. The service offers a way for you to visualize your goals and dreams. The technique is exactly the same as how athletes visualize winning before a competition. This is a tool to create a video of your personal goals. Try it before you put it down

I'm guessing that this person shelled out the $48.95 on something that YouTube does for FREE.

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Thursday, December 25, 2008

They'll See the Big Board!!

I was worried about NORAD's Santa tracker siphoning off valuable resources that should be watching the Russkies. Then someone reminded me that Sarah Palin can see the Soviet Union from her house.

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Turkey

I didn't enter The New Yorker "Cartoon Caption Contest #170," but the winner laid an egg:

"I miss the cash bonuses."

MY favorite, "I am useless until I have my morning turkey," came in second.

The third place entry did nothing for me: "I was actually hoping for a boy."
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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Bread and Circuses: Ruminations From Ground Zero of the Auto Bailout

This week I did something that I rarely ever do: I took the bus into work.

Full post at The House Next Door.
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Monday, December 22, 2008

Just ONE More

The Saints hand the Lions their head. Now, don't blow the last one against Green Bay guys!

A "perfect" 0 and 16 season is just four quarters away.

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Sunday, December 21, 2008


Great entry to Postsecret:

I don't like proving people wrong, but I'm ALWAYS surprised when an mass email turns out to be true.
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Thursday, December 18, 2008

44 Presidents of the United States

A friend of mine forwarded me this excellent bit of work:

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

What's Kathy Smoking?

There's plenty to take issue with in this love letter from the Detroit Free Press by Kathy Barks Hoffman to Governor Granholm masquerading as a serious article...
Granholm makes rounds as auto advocate

Gov. Jennifer Granholm has differed in the past with U.S. automakers, squabbling with the United Auto Workers union over party politics and wishing out loud that Michigan’s fortunes weren’t so tied to the ailing industry.
Exactly WHEN did she fight the UAW. I must have missed it.

...But when detractors in recent weeks portrayed the Detroit Three as manufacturing dinosaurs that didn’t deserve bridge loans to avoid bankruptcy, Granholm became an impassioned — and occasionally sharp-tongued — advocate for the industry.

“It has been extremely frustrating, and I have probably used some words I should not be using,” she said last week...
I wish she had been as passionate when Toyota was trying to decide where to locate their new plant (that ended up in another state). Oh, but she did give 40 percent tax breaks to the film industry.
...But the feisty and hard-charging governor, who ran a half-marathon in less than two hours this fall, also is easily angered by injustice, and she thinks the automakers and her state are being wrongly maligned....
Could the writer kiss her ass any more. Speaking of running, I'm just glad she can't run again for Governor.
...She accused Senate Republicans who refused to back the bridge loans of “protecting the foreign companies that are in their borders. They’re not acting as Americans.”...
Shelby and his cheerleaders in the GOP are full of shit, BUT I thought challenging some one's patriotism was wrong. BTW, does her husband still drive a Lexus?
...When former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said during an exchange Sunday with Granholm on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that U.S. automakers had a cost disadvantage compared with foreign automakers, an impassioned Granholm skewered his comments as inaccurate and pointed a finger at him as she argued over legacy costs...
I disagree with Romney's position, BUT he mopped the floor with her on Sunday.
...Granholm usually is relatively cool in public. The former assistant federal prosecutor and state attorney general often draws on her legal training to phrase her comments carefully, but she can be a fiery speaker....
I remember a particularly "fiery" speech where she promised that we'd be "blow us away" in five years? Nuff said.

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Monday, December 15, 2008

The Other Shoe...

Was it just me, or did the Secret Service seem a bit slow in coming out to protect President Bush during the shoe throwing incident in Iraq?

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

Two To Go!

After the Lions dropped a 31-21 decision to Indianapolis, a "perfect" 0 and 16 season is just two games away!

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Friday, December 12, 2008

If the Shoe Fits...

My 15 year old took a one-week "Young Adults" class at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit last summer.

Today we noticed that one of her projects from that class made it into the new CSS course schedule brochure.

Yes, I'm one of those annoyingly proud papas.

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Global Warming Heretics Unite!

I'll reiterate my prediction that, in a few years, "man-made" global warming will compared to the "killer bee" scare from the late 70's.
UN Blowback: More Than 650 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims

Study: Half of warming due to Sun! –Sea Levels Fail to Rise? - Warming Fears in 'Dustbin of History'

POZNAN, Poland - The UN global warming conference currently underway in Poland is about to face a serious challenge from over 650 dissenting scientists from around the globe who are criticizing the climate claims made by the UN IPCC and former Vice President Al Gore. Set for release this week, a newly updated U.S. Senate Minority Report features the dissenting voices of over 650 international scientists, many current and former UN IPCC scientists, who have now turned against the UN. The report has added about 250 scientists (and growing) in 2008 to the over 400 scientists who spoke out in 2007. The over 650 dissenting scientists are more than 12 times the number of UN scientists (52) who authored the media hyped IPCC 2007 Summary for Policymakers...(full article)

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Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Candidate 5

The scandal involving Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his efforts to benefit from filling Obama's vacant Senate seat has me muttering "WTF?"

Blago 2016

Throughout the intercepted conversations, Blagojevich also allegedly spent significant time weighing the option of appointing himself to the open Senate seat and expressed a variety of reasons for doing so, including: frustration at being “stuck” as governor; a belief that he will be able to obtain greater resources if he is indicted as a sitting Senator as opposed to a sitting governor; a desire to remake his image in consideration of a possible run for President in 2016; avoiding impeachment by the Illinois legislature; making corporate contacts that would be of value to him after leaving public office; facilitating his wife’s employment as a lobbyist; and generating speaking fees should he decide to leave public office.


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Monday, December 08, 2008

Pot, Meet Kettle

According to Reuters, Senate Banking Committee Chairman, Christopher Dodd, "agreed with suggestions by fellow lawmakers that GM should probably consider replacing CEO Rick Wagoner and restructure with a new team.

"I think he has to move on," Dodd said.

Interestingly, Dodd got a very sweet deal from Countrywide Financial which is at the very center of the banking crisis that arguably what has caused a lot of GM's current woes.

Two U.S. senators, two former Cabinet members, and a former ambassador to the United Nations received loans from Countrywide Financial through a little-known program that waived points, lender fees, and company borrowing rules for prominent people.

Senators Christopher Dodd, Democrat from Connecticut and chairman of the Banking Committee, and Kent Conrad, Democrat from North Dakota, chairman of the Budget Committee and a member of the Finance Committee, refinanced properties through Countrywide’s “V.I.P.” program in 2003 and 2004, according to company documents and emails and a former employee familiar with the loans.

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Saturday, December 06, 2008

RIP: Forrest Ackerman

I probably shouldn't admit this, but Forrest Ackerman and William Gaines had an enormous impact on my life. As a kid, Famous Monsters of Filmland and Mad Magazine were the first periodicals that I read on a regular basis. I frankly couldn't be bothered with the antics of bat, super or spider men. I even got my dad to pay for subscriptions (no small feat).


Forrest J Ackerman, the Man Who Coined Term 'Sci-Fi,' Dies at 92

...Ackerman said he thought up the term "sci-fi" in 1954 after he heard a radio announcer say "hi-fi."

"My dear wife said, 'Forget it, Forry, it will never catch on,'" he later said, according AP.

FMoF came out years before People or Entertainment Weekly and catered narrowly to science fiction and horror fans. It really didn't offer any serious cinematic analysis and often lumped pure crap in with film classics. However, I'd argue that FMoF generated an appreciation for movies in youngsters just as the "Dick and Jane" series taught them to read. That certainly was the case with me.

I, for one, am glad his wife was wrong.
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Friday, December 05, 2008

Second Only to "Netflix Envy"

Now I don't feel as bad about that stack of unread magazines in the corner. From
Are you afflicted with 'TiVo guilt'?

More and more people are becoming turned off by their TiVos. Digital video recorders (DVRs) revolutionized television for many viewers, freeing them from endless VCR programming and buying and keeping track of tapes. But it turns out that very ease is providing users with more than they can watch -- and turning a joy into drudgery.

"You want to watch TV, and what do you have? You turn on your DVR and you have a homework assignment," says Brad Berens, chief content officer for iMedia communications, who analyzes how media advances change people's behavior.

"Economists call this 'opportunity costs,' " explains Berens. "You're sitting there and you have to weigh, well, 'I have to watch this thing, because I promised myself when I told TiVo ... I want the whole season of that! Go get it! And go get things like it!' And so you've committed to this decision and it's a burden -- suddenly your relaxation has turned into more work."

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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Fun with Facebook

Here's a nifty little Facebook game to play (in lieu of the usual stupid "Movies of the '80s" quizzes).

Instead of listing a status such as "out to lunch," or whatever, do the following:

  • Grab the book closest to you. Now.
  • Go to page 56.
  • Find the 5th sentence.
  • Write that sentence as your status.
  • Copy these instructions as a comment to your status.
  • Don't go looking for your favorite book, or the coolest one you have -- just grab the closest one.

When I did that, I got: "No, it's not Star Wars." I actually kinda liked that one.

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Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Too Bad If You're a Giants Fan Named "Smith"

Here's a fun experiment.

Go to the shop on the NFL site and try to order a New York Giants jersey with the number 17 and name "Smith."

You can't. Instead, you'll get the following error:
Your current entry cannot be processed. Some entries are prohibited due to guidelines for past and present player names. Please create a new entry.
Here's why: after accidentally shooting himself in the leg, New York Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress (no. 17) checked into the hospital under the name of "Harris Smith."

As a result, the league has acted fast to block any clever fans from getting a #17, "Smith" jersey.

Pretty funny.
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Monday, December 01, 2008

Monday Monday

In honor of Cyber Monday:

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