Tuesday, September 30, 2008

August Round-Up

August. The end of summer. Kind of. Really, summer in San Francisco doesn't really START until the end of August, and kind of ends at the end of October. At least, that's how it was before this whole "global warming" thing took hold. But that has nothing to do with how I entertained myself in August, does it?

Movies Seen: Fourteen, with one in a theater. The best was "Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day." It's was just an all out fun little movie. Certainly nothing deep, but I was pleased through every minute of it.

The worst was probably the one I saw in a theater: "The X-Files: I Want to Believe." Chuck's reaction pretty much mirrors mine. I remain completely amazed that it ever got greenlit in the first place, because it is completely and utterly ridiculous as far as the plot is concerned, and while it might have been saved by some of the humor Duchovny and Anderson brought to their roles in the TV show, they weren't allowed to be anything but depressed and gloomy throughout the movie. I defy anyone to try and explain what the hell those Russians were doing on that farm without cracking themselves up over the sheer ludicrousness of it all. That said, I can't wait to watch it with some Rifftrax commentary!

Books Read: Four. "Everything I Needed to Know About Being a Girl I Learned From Judy Blume" wasn't as fun as I'd hoped it would be.

"Eats, Shoots and Leaves" by Lynne Truss was as entertaining as a book about grammar can be, although since the author is British, I found it hard to take her opinions seriously. I mean, they leave commas outside of quotes, all by their lonesome, instead of tucked inside, safe and secure, as they should be! What do they know about grammar?!

"Life With My Sister Madonna" by Christopher Ciccone was un-put-downable, although really, really badly written. I mean, like, full of spelling errors, and grammatical mistakes, not to mention just plain choppy. Plus, every time he would recall a conversation he had with his sister, he'd insert her name into it. Did he really use her name every time he talked to her? "Madonna, I think your performance tonight was groundbreaking." Or, "I understand that you no longer want the sconces in your bathroom, Madonna, but you still owe me money for them!" I don't think so.

Lastly was "The Historian" by Elizabeth Kostava, which took me forever to get through. At first I was engrossed. I imagine it's kind of like "The DaVinci Code" (although I've never read that) in that it's about academics investigating a historical figure, in this case Count Dracula. The conceit is that Dracula was a real vampire, and is still alive...er, undead. Which, being a Dracula fan, sucked (ha!) me in right away. Plus I kind of dig the notion of doing research the old fashioned way, via libraries and old letters and journals. That is to say, doing that. Reading about other people doing that, not so much.

But what really kicked me over the edge of tolerating the book into thinking it was completely redonkulous, was when (SPOILER ALERT!) Dracula is revealed to have kidnapped the professor that has gone missing because....he wants him to catalog his large collection of books. For all eternity!

I am so not kidding about that.

So, basically Dracula is just an evil head librarian. Iz not so scary akshully.

Fancy Dinners Out: One, at L'Ardoise, a little French bistro near the Castro. Good eats, but once again the place didn't have a full bar. You know how I feel about that.

Live Shows Seen: None. Again.

Shoes Bought: Four pairs. But two pairs were super cheap from Payless. This pair of green and white sandals were about seven bucks, and this cutie pair of candy striped peep toes were, like, free. I think it was buy one pair get one pair free week at Payless.

The other two were purchased at Loehmann's, so they were pretty cheap too. I don't know how often I'm going to wear these wedge heels, but they were adorned with sequins, so I couldn't resist. I DO know I've already worn these patent leather Mary Janes more than once already, and love them despite the blisters they've inflicted upon me.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Six Degress of Locality

A little late posting this, but this week's reality TV locals post is now up on SFist.

In the future, everyone you know will be on a reality show for 15 minutes.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

It's a Boom!

This week's Tube Tops is now up on the SFGate Culture Blog!

I can't believe it's already Sunday afternoon, hence almost Sunday evening. And hence almost Monday.

No fair!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Spittin' Distance

Have you seen this yet?

Watch CBS Videos Online

I saw this following quote from the movie "Billy Madison" in a discussion on another blog, and had to steal it. It's just too perfect:

"[Mrs. Palin], what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul."

Seriously, God have mercy ON US ALL.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Thursday, September 18, 2008

"The Economy's In Shambles

...and your 401K is worth 15 bucks. What are you gonna do?"

"I'm going to Disneyland!"

Indeed I am! It's the entertaining equivalent to burying ones head in the sand!

Leaving in the morning, and hoping the traffic in LA will be light because, seriously, people down there can't possibly have any money for gas.

See? There's a bright side to all this!


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Mommie Dearest

Martha Stewart's daughter Alexis continues to forge a career out of making fun of her mother in a new series called "Whatever, Martha," in which she and friend Jennifer Koppelman Hutt watch old episodes of the Martha Stewart show and mock them ala MST3k. A funny concept, I suppose, but the fact that Martha Stewart produces the show just makes it kind of...sick. Martha and Alexis have supposedly mended all their fences, but I think Alexis still can't stand her mother and is totally getting off on all this.

It premieres tonight at 6pm (and 9pm) on Fine Living, a channel I had no idea I got, but I apparently do.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Sunday, September 14, 2008

It's Shelly!

Go read this week's Tube Tops up on the SFGate Culture Blog now! No, NOW!

This weekend instead of taking the class I already took I:

* Went to the DMV and got license plates for my car since the ones they sent were either stolen or lost in the mail.

* Bought a new microwave that turned out to be broken.

* Exchanged a broken microwave.

* Replaced my broken toilet seat.

* Installed a new toilet handle since the old one did not match the silver hardware of the new toilet seat and it was driving me crazy.

* Replaced the spigot on my kitchen faucet so it now has spraying action.

* Finally framed my 1979 sheet of Wacky Package stickers. The frame wasn't an exact fit, but I still think it looks pretty good.

* Had lunch at the Tadich Grill.

* Went to two comic book stores to find the first issue of "The Stand."

* Saw "Burn After Reading" at the Sundance Kabuki. Fancy! Expensive!

Wow. Certainly more productive than sitting in a theater full of undergrads discussing Hitchcock films, that's for sure.

Friday, September 12, 2008

(Almost) Twenty Years

So, I was digging through old notebooks and papers tonight in preparation for a two-day film class I signed up for this Friday and Saturday. The class is about Hitchcock, and I know I had at one point during my many years of cinema studies written a paper comparing "Rear Window" to reality TV, and was hoping I could plagiarize myself and maybe use some of it for a paper for this class. Alas, I couldn't find the paper, but I did find an old notebook that included a lot of notes about Hitchcock films.

Because, you see, I had already taken this class four years ago.


My 20 year college degree plan is proving to be a foolish one.

Oh well. I already took the day off work. Maybe I'll go to an actual movie theater instead.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Seven Years

I don't really have anything to say about 9/11 that hasn't been said before. It still fills me with sadness, and with each passing year of the Bush administration, more and more rage. But I want to make sure people know about a pretty amazing looking documentary that will be airing on the History Channel tonight at 9pm. It's called "102 Minutes That Changed America." Here's a preview.

[via B-Side Blog]

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I Just Want to Tell You How I'm Feeling

I knew the minute those blue and green screens popped up behind McCain during his RNC speech that people were going to have a field day with it. And this is my favorite so far.

And for those who don't get the joke, ::cough:: my parents ::cough, read this.

Je T'aime Marjorie

I didn't have time to link to this yesterday, but I put up a new, brief reality TV locals post up on SFist. ANTM is back!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Fall of TV: Fringe

This year I just couldn't find the time nor the energy to do a really comprehensive look at all the season and series premieres that are headed our way like a freight train, so instead I'll just try to highlight the shows I think are worth a gander on the day of their premieres. For kicks!

Tonight's big show is "Fringe," which comes from J.J. Abrams. He's got a pretty good track record so far, with "Felicity," "Alias," and, of course, "Lost." However, I'm a bit worried about this one. While the title brings to mind a show about the joys and horrors of a particular kind of hairstyle, the trailer just make it seem like an "X-Files" rehash. I've also heard mixed things about the screening they had down at Comic-Con. Nonetheless, it's got a season pass on my old TiVo, and aside from Joss Whedon's "Dollhouse," which still doesn't have a firm premiere date, (probably sometime in January), it's the only new show this season that I'm even slightly excited about. It premieres at 8pm tonight on Fox, and then moves to 9pm next week. Here's the trailer.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

It's Keats!

This week's Tube Tops is not up on the SFGate Culture Blog!

I can not tell you how much I am loving San Francisco's fog right now. Whenever Labor Day comes around, I always get this excitement for the end of summer and the beginning of fall, and always seem to forget that, duh, San Francisco summer, weather-wise, basically STARTS around Labor Day and lasts until a little before Halloween. So I will savor as many foggy days as I can get these coming weeks!

Friday, September 05, 2008


Yikes. That was a big one. But at least it was short.

(That's what she said.)

Also, I'm sitting at home in a halter dress not fit for public view and the first thing I thought when the quake hit was "Crap! I can't run out of here looking like this! I sure hope this isn't big enough to lead to a need to leave my apartment!"

Which is why, when you live in San Francisco, you should always be presentable. Even in bed. No sleeping in the nude!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Si mignon il m'incite à vouloir mourir

I'm so glad those dumb Summer Olympics are over so we can start focusing on the 2010 Winter Olympics and their insanely cute mascots.

Seriously, this video has got to be the cutest goddamn thing I have ever seen.

Yeah, I'll even watch curling if it means one of those little guys is running around the bottom of the screen the entire time!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Monday, September 01, 2008

Here She Comes, In Her Palanquin

God, "Mad Men" is just...so....good. It gives me chills every week. But that said, if you watched yesterday's show and thought to yourself at the beginning of the episode, "Say, that doesn't sound like a song from the '60s," you're quite right. It wasn't. It was "Infanta" by The Decemberists. I have mixed feelings about them using it. On the one hand, it's a great song, and it does sound a bit like a British Invasion band, right down to the singer's fake English accent. But on the other hand, it's a bit jarring, and does take you out of the show's time frame. And I'm not quite sure how the song's lyrics really play into the episode's themes...

Judge for yourself. Here are the lyrics, followed by a live version of the song. You tell me what it has to do with the show...

Here she comes in her palanquin
on the back of an elephant
on a bed made of linen and sequins and silk
all astride on her father's line
with the king and his concubines
and her nurse with her pitchers of liquors and milk
and we'll all come praise the infanta
and we'll all come praise the infanta

Among five score pachyderm
each canopied and passengered
sit the duke and the duchess' luscious young girls
within sight of the baroness
seething spite for this lithe largesse
by her side sits the baron
her barrenness barbs her
and we'll all come praise the infanta
and we'll all come praise the infanta

A phalanx on camelback
thirty ranks on a forward tack
followed close, their shiny bright standards a-waving
while behind in their coach-and-fours
ride the wives of the king of Moors
And the veiled young virgin, the prince's betrothed
and we'll all come praise the infanta
and we'll all come praise the infanta

And as she sits upon her place
her innocence laid on her face
from all atop the parapets blow a multitude of coronets
melodies rhapsodical and fair
and all our hearts afire
the sky ablaze with cannon fire
we all raise our voices to the air
to the air...

And above all this folderol
on a bed made of chaparral
she is laid, a coronal placed on her brow
and the babe, all in slumber dreams
of a place filled with quiet streams
and the lake where her cradle was pulled from the water
and we'll all come praise the infanta
and we'll all come praise the infanta

Now, after watching this bit of behind-the-scenes "Mad Men" video, I can kind of see the relationship between the song and the episode's themes, but it still seems like a bit of a stretch to me...BTW, DON'T watch this clip until you've watched the episode...