Monday, February 25, 2008

NO COUNTRY FOR OSCAR WINNERS

The first of the relatively few thoughts I have on last night's Academy Awards is "Finally!"

"What?" you ask. You may think I've been holding a 25 year vigil, waiting for the Coen Brothers to enter the pantheon. Or perhaps that I needed to see The Bourne Ultimatum sweep the editing & sound categories. Or even that I can finally rest, knowing I've heard not one, not two, but three fucking songs from Enchanted.

None of the above.

The "finally" instead means I can see a bunch of flicks I want to see. And "why have you not been able to see them?" you may also be asking. Well . . . because I'm weird. But you already knew that, so a quick explanation is required, and it'll bring it all into light if not into sanity.

My favored (read: required) mode of in-theater movie viewing is going alone to a matinee and sitting right in the center, about three rows from the front. Any other manner (with Mrs. Mike, with a friend, on a Friday or Saturday night) pretty much sucks for me. Too much chatter, interrupted sight lines, seats in weird corners of the theater. I just hate it.

I know -- it's crazy, it's obsessive, it's flat-out nuts, but it's me. What can I tell you? Since the early 90's, this is how I've seen most of the movies I saw in the theater. But with my current work demands, I have little time (read: no time) to attend matinees. I could, of course, bring along clients, partners, opposing counsel, the judge, but since that'd violate the "alone" rule, no go, you see? Or imagine if the judge insisted we sit in the back of the theater. I could be held in contempt if I said, "screw you, with all due respect, Your Honor," and sat up front alone. I love movies, but I gotta keep my job, you know?

Anyhow, now that the damn awards are over, I can add No Country For Old Men, There Will Be Blood, Michael Clayton, and Juno to my queue. Yeeeeeeee-haw. I is psyched.

Oh . . . and for my other thought: all four individual acting awards went to foreigners, including one in a foreign language film. Not sure what that means, but it's interesting.

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

STATING THE OBVIOUS

If I told you on February 20, 2007 (that'd be one year ago for the calendarily deficient among us) that one year later we'd be pretty much on track for a Barack Obama vs. John McCain presidential election battle, you'd have told me I was . . .

. . . well, what would you have told me? Let's play the time machine game.

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Friday, February 15, 2008

TAGGED BY TOAST

I've just been tagged by Toast in possibly the stupidest meme I've ever seen. Gee, thanks big fella. Se├▒or Toasty passed the baton with a healthy coating of snark on it. And silly him, I dropped it cause it was soooooo slippery. Oops. Sorry.

Meanwhile, let's do this here thing and pretend like it never happened. I'm supposed to:
1. Grab the nearest book (that is at least 123 pages long).
2. Open to p. 123.
3. Go down to the 5th sentence.
4. Type in the following 3 sentences.
5. Tag five people.
Whatever. Let's see. I closed my eyes and grabbed, and after knocking all sorts of knicks & knacks off the bookshelf (I will blame Toast if Mrs. Mike gets pissed) I came up with . . .

"Reflections," by depressed-and-ultimately-suicidal, German-Jewish philosopher & social critic, Walter Benjamin. I think I read parts of this for some class in college. Let me turn to p. 123:
"The village chronical, agricultural development, production technique, cultural institutions are graphically recorded in lines of development, along with components of tools, machine parts, retorts containing chemicals displayed every where on the walls. Out of curiosity I went up to a shelf from which two Negro faces grimaced at me. But as I came nearer, they turned out to be gas masks."
And there you have it, in all its fascinating detail. Production technique! Lines of development! Negro faces! Or just the "gas masks" that look ever so much like Negro faces!

And now, as required, allow me to pass the baton (sans snark) to Edwardo, Rickey, Steves, and since Toast didn't tag him, Furious. Enjoy gents.

Hmmm . . . that's only 4, but I'm mandated by the Great Meme Lord to tab 5. I wanted to leave George out of it, since he hates memes so much. But since I know so few people in this big, lonely blogosphere, I'll just have to do what I have to do. George, apologies but tag, you're it.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

HILLARY HAS A DREAM NIGHTMARE

Man. Barack is really kicking Hillary's ass all of a sudden. At this rate, First Gentleman candidate Bill is gonna have to suggest that Obama was actually Stokely Carmichael's roommate in college, and he advocated "smackin' up white bitches when they get uppity."

Or maybe he'll just sit back and let the so-called super-delegates anoint Hillary as candidate notwithstanding the people's choice.

Either way, I think Obama needs to decisively defeat Hillary in Texas & Ohio next month in order to really sew this thing up. And even then he'll need body guards to prevent the character assassination that'll follow.

Which'll be nothing compared to what follows from the GOPers if he actually gets the nomination.

No matter what, this whole thing is gonna be uglier than Dick Cheney before it's all over. The way the American people respond to all the "subtle" racism we'll be exposed to over the next 9 months will speak volumes about us.

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Friday, February 08, 2008

FUCKABEE, SCHMUCKABEE, SUCKABEE, YUCKABEE, WE'RE RUNNING OUT OF LUCKABEE

So Romney has dropped out of the race. Too bad -- I enjoyed the double bulls-eye of Mormonism & the name "Mitt." Now McCain's weird gerbil jaw & the obvious (and not-even funny) pun "Fuckabee" are the only two easy go-to's I have left in the arsenal.

Now I actually have to think, get creative, in order to make jokes that none of you'll laugh at anyway because they aren't even remotely funny. This blogging shit ain't easy.

But under the "No Joke Required" category, we now learn from AP that professional asshole & part-time evangelist James Dobson has endorsed Mike Huckabee:
The remaining candidate for whom I could vote is Governor Huckabee. His unwavering positions on the social issues, notably the institution of marriage, the importance of faith and the sanctity of human life, resonate deeply with me and with many others . . . . Obviously, the governor faces an uphill struggle, given the delegates already committed to Senator McCain. Nevertheless, I believe he is our best remaining choice for president of the United States.
Question remains, however, will he he still heart Huckabee if, and when, Maverick McCain tabs him as his running mate. And that question isn't moot; the ability to get out the evangelical vote is a big part of why Old Man John would pick Huckabee. If big time power players like Dobson refuse to back McCain, then the downside of a wacko fundamentalist on the ticket becomes too large.

Hmmmm. Power games galore. Welcome to America, Version 0.8. Where men with views such as this . . . or this . . . or even this, have undue control over the selection process for our national leaders.

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Wednesday, February 06, 2008

SOME SUPER THOUGHTS ON A NOT-SO SUPER TUESD-- (OH, WHATEVER)

Well, John McCain has really mavericked himself into the front-runner's position. I guess all of America's moderate-to-right gerbils are very pleased.

Thing that scares me, of course, is that Mike "I Don't Heart" Huckabee has emerged as the likely vice-Presidential candidate at this point. Not sure if anyone else has been analyzing that, but he sure seems like the smart play for McCain -- shore up his support in states where he'd otherwise get a run for his money from Hillary: Arkansas, Tennessee, West Virginia, etc.

Plus, wouldn't that help get out the vote among evangelicals who might otherwise sit this one out? Just food for thought.

(So chow down, and regurgitate your own thoughts in the comments.)

Meanwhile, the Dems look to be dug in for a long one. I think Hillary'll hang on, if it's close come convention time, of course she'll win. She's a Clinton, for crissakes! I'm not sure I really understand this whole superdelegate thing, but basically I think it means there are a bunch of reps at the convention who can swing their support to whomever the hell they feel like. Doesn't matter how the voters of their states went.

Is that pretty much it?

Well, Hill seems to have more of them than Obama, and I have little-to-no doubt that most of them'll go her way when the chips are on the felt.

The Maverick vs. Hillary? Ugh, that's ugly.

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Monday, February 04, 2008

SOME SUPER THOUGHTS ON A SUPER GAME (OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT)

Wow. That was one helluva show. Amazing catches, amazing comebacks, lead changes galore, drama out the ass.

Oh, and the Pats lost. Heh, heh. Suck it, Belichick.

Meanwhile, I'd be lying if I didn't say it was a bit bittersweet. As in '86 and '90 (and, err, in '00 too) I rooted -- hard -- for Big Blue, feeling the fan's ups-and-downs as the game progressed. Hell, my heart was racing in the 4th quarter. And I was truly happy when they won.

But, as usual, my football team wins ungatz, while the other NY team takes home the hardware for the 3rd time in 22 seasons. At 40 years old, after following sports for wasting ~35 years, I've enjoyed exactly two championships. That's right, two. The Mets in '86, and The Rangers in '94. But enough whining, let's talk about what happened:

1. Let's get it right out, so no one thinks I'm crazy, or that I didn't really watch the game or something: that fucking play on the game-winning drive was unbelievable. I don't know how Eli avoided the sack. I have no idea how Tyree caught the ball on his head and managed to hang on as Rodney Harrison attempted to snap his spine over his knee. That's the sort of play you could repeat 100 times and there's no way it leads to anything but a sack, an INT, or an incompletion. No way.

(But that's why they play the game, or some other cliche.)

2. I'm not a huge Tom Petty fan, but I like plenty of his songs. Including "American Girl." Nevertheless, I think next time he plays the Super Bowl, someone needs to tell him it's the Super Bowl. Not game 3 of the exhibition season.

Hell, I've seen more excitement and overt passion from Eli Manning during a Super Bowl-winning drive.

3. Which reminds me -- Suck it Belichick.

4. Mrs. Mike -- who knows as much about football as I know about sleeping with supermodels -- took about 0.7 seconds last night to inform me that Tom Brady is "really good looking."

Gee, thanks, hon. Feel like informing me that even though Wes Welker is also short & doesn't look like a football player, he's got a more impressive bulge in his football pants than I do?

Of course, when they showed Dreamboat Tommy at the post-game press conference, she said he looked better with his helmet on.

I didn't have the heart to explain that (a) he'd just lost a game that'll live in his nightmares every day until he dies, or that (b) he'd just had the shit beaten out of him for 3 hours straight.

5. Which reminds me -- Suck it Belichick.

6. With a couple exceptions (FedEx & the pigeons; Jobs.com, or one of those, with the heart that quits its job; the surprising, "no joke" Hyundai spot), the ads last night were awful. This is like . . . 7 years running that the commercials have been exceptionally poor.

I don't even know what else to say about it.

7. Justin Tuck was a beast yesterday.

8. I thought it was really cool seeing Peyton cheering his ass off for his little bro, especially on the game-winning TD. I still think he's a bit overrated as a QB, but everything about him as a person makes me like him.

Although I'd swear that during the post-game celebration, he had a small, tailed primate on his back. Funny, huh?

9. Speaking of Mannings, I think it's safe to say a star was born last night. The kid's always had a bit of a knack for cool, 4th quarter comebacks. And now he did it on the biggest stage imaginable, just after the master of the trade did his own version with about 2 1/2 minutes left.

A torch-passing moment perhaps? But a torch I don't think Handsome Tom was looking to pass. Especially with the way he heaved those last couple passes. Heh heh.

10. Oh, that reminds me: Suck it Belichick.

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