Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Friday, November 03, 2006
"What exactly is our endgame here? Do we really believe that we can install Gen. Tommy Franks as the ruler of Iraq? Is our arrogance and hubris so great that we actually believe that a U.S. provisional military regime will be welcomed with open arms by the Iraqi people? Democracy cannot possibly thrive under coercion. To take over a country and impose one's own system of government without regard for the people of that country is the very antithesis of democracy. And it is doomed to fail. A war against Iraq is not only morally wrong, it will be an unmitigated disaster."The Onion, March 2003.
Monday, October 16, 2006
Get well, fellow Swork patrons. I look forward to again eavesdropping on your interesting conversations while enjoying free wi-fi and excellent coffee...
Saturday, September 30, 2006
Thursday, September 28, 2006
Well, here's an article that may start to reverse the tide of pro-squirrel propaganda.
From the San Francisco Gate:
Full article here.
Boy Attacked By Squirrel In Mtn. View ParkA fierce squirrel attacked a 4-year-old boy at Mountain View's Cuesta Park last week as the rodent tried to wrestle a muffin out of the boy's hands, leaving him with scratch and bite marks that prompted a series of precautionary rabies shots.
The skirmish wasn't the first time the park's numerous tree squirrels targeted picnickers.
Mountain View Community Services Director David Muela said today that as many as six people have been bitten or scratched by squirrels since May, and that the attacks have become more ferocious in the last month. One squirrel even went so far as to jump into a child's stroller.
Monday, September 25, 2006
I'm a big fan of Canadian culture, so when I spotted this goofy, endearing ad in the Pasadena Weekly about 6 months ago I knew I had to check this place out. My girlfriend and I went there for breakfast, and it was actually quite good.
Friday, September 22, 2006
Yet another reason to enjoy some alternative cinema or go to the New Beverly instead of the multiplex.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
Richard Hammond, one of the presenters on BBC's Top Gear (quite possibly the greatest TV show of all time), was injured yesterday when he crashed a jet-powered car while attempting to break a British land speed record for a segment on the show. According to most reports, he crashed at around 280 miles an hour, and was airlifted to a local hospital in critical condition. He's been upgraded to "stable" now, and hopefully he will make a full and speedy recovery. Richard, get well soon!
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
More goodness in the CNN article.
The Beijing Youth Daily quoted Zhang, a father of two who was visiting Beijing for the first time, as saying that he had seen pandas on television and "they seemed to get along well with people."
"No one ever said they would bite people," Zhang said. "I just wanted to touch it. I was so dizzy from the beer. I don't remember much."
Here are the numbers for the lease:
Down Payment: $400,000
Monthly Payment: $23,595 x 60 months
Total cost of lease over 5 years: $1,815,700
Of course, you're only allowed to drive the Veyron 2,500 miles a year, which is less than 10 hours of driving at the Veyron's top speed of 253mph. Jesus.
Perhaps in a future entry I'll ponder fantasy plane purchases, many of which are a bargain in comparison.
Friday, September 15, 2006
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Occasionally I'll have a glorious weekend that could only happen in Los Angeles, the kind of weekend that makes you realize that the smog and the traffic and headaches are worth it. This was one of those weekends.
On Saturday night, I went to Hollywood Forever Cemetery with my girlfriend and my good friend John. We enjoyed a sunset picnic dinner, and watched The Apartment as the moon rose over the mausoleum. The Apartment is one of my all time favorite movies, and it was an absolute treat to see it in a perfect setting with good company. After several years of frequent attendance, this season I've mostly avoided Cinespia's cemetery screenings because the crowds have been so massive as to make the whole experience a logistical nightmare, but this Saturday the event was well managed and it seemed less crowded.
Sunday afternoon, Anne and I went to the Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo to see The Kid Brother, starring Harold Lloyd and written by my great-grandfather. The Old Town Music Hall is probably my second favorite theater in L.A., after the New Beverly--one of those places that is staggering far away from the superficial veneer that most people think of when "L.A." comes to mind. It's a small theater in El Segundo that plays primarily silent films and very early musicals. All films are preceded by a short concert played on a massive Wurlitzer organ, which takes up the entire front of the theater. After the concert, there's a sing-along, usually of songs that were popular the year the movie that you're there to see was released. In our case, that would be 1927...and most of our fellow moviegoers were old enough to have seen the film as a new release. If you haven't been to the Old Town Music Hall, break out of your Pacific-Mann-AMC-Regal rut and GO NOW, it's always an interesting experience.
After the Kid Brother, we stopped by home briefly to pick up our picnic kit, and headed directly to the Hollywood Bowl to see Neko Case, Ryan Adams and Willie Nelson. We were primarily there to see Neko, and the sound her massive voice filling the Bowl gave me the chills. Ryan Adams was mediocre, but Willie was utterly amazing. Neither Anne nor I had ever taken anything more than a casual interest in Willie Nelson, but he absolutely blew us away. Amazing songwriting, staggering musicianship from him and his band, wonderful voice. Top notch on every level.
This morning Neko performed live on KCRW. Do yourself a favor and listen to her performance here.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
I never knew much about Loudon Wainwright until I researched him after seeing him as an actor on Undeclared. Fortunately, the Undeclared box-set includes a filmed Loudon Wainwright concert that serves as a great introduction to the man and his songs.
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
| Enough salt to kill a healthy person., April 25, 2006 |
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful:SOOOOOOO much SALT!, February 23, 2006
If you've ever thought you should cut down on salt, BEWARE
Unfortunately, no one has reviewed pure MSG yet.
Currently Amazon is having a sale on magazine subscriptions, which started me thinking about the gazillions of magazine subscriptions I've held through the years. Here is an incomplete list. Current subscriptions are in bold.
Ranger Rick (as a kid)
World (as a kid)
A/V Multimedia Video Producer (Siggraph freebie)
Computer Graphics World
Animation Magazine (should be known as "Animation Press Release Magazine")
Wired (always interesting, but I still never read it)
Time (rarely had time to read, and started getting news on the web instead)
U.S. News & World Report (freebie, cancelled when I found out it was Time for right wing apologist hacks)
World War II
Military History (consistently fascinating)
Popular Mechanics (written for fourth graders)
Entertainment Weekly (high school conversational cheat sheet)
Budget Travel (surprisingly useful)
Auto Week (freebie, not a bad way to spend 10 minutes)
Road & Track (the same crap as the other car mags, but with better photography)
Motor Trend (yawn)
Plane & Pilot
Car & Driver
Sport Compact Car
The New Yorker (brilliant, but I don't read it as often as I'd like to)
Mac Home Journal (back in the day!)
Air & Space
National Geographic Adventure
Obviously, I love magazines, and am unable to resist subscribing to them. The problem is that, since the internet has become my primary source of up-to-date information, I rarely read most of the magazines that I receive. However, I do relish the IDEA of having numerous fresh magazines around to read at any given moment, should the need arise.
So tonight I've taken the only logical action, and have just ordered subscriptions to Mental Floss, Smithsonian, and Military History.
* Update- Frighteningly, these magazine subscriptions are my twenty-sixth order from Amazon.com so far this year. Not items...orders.
Saturday, September 02, 2006
Friday, September 01, 2006
As an example of this, tonight I was watching the first season of Curb Your Enthusiasm, and noticed that Larry David was walking between two restaurants on Brand in Glendale, about two blocks from my office.
He leaves the first restaurant (Byzantine, then Yulie's Taverna, currently the spectacularly named "Fantasia") to avoid someone he doesn't wish to talk to...
...and walks down the street to use the restroom at Don Cuco's. Smart choice. Using the restroom in Don Cuco's is far more pleasant than actually eating there.
The Last King of Scotland
Night at the Museum
Al Franken: God Spoke
I am guardedly optimistic for a change...
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
This week I purchased two DVD box sets via your website, and checked the supposedly time saving "pick up in-store" option. Upon receiving a confirmation e-mail tonight, I drove to my nearest Best Buy to pick up my purchases. I naively assumed that there might be a dedicated desk where I would be able to pick up my small purchase in a timely fashion, as is implied on the website, but upon entering the store I was directed to stand in a dozens-deep line of dissatisfied customers in the "Returns/Exchanges" line. I've long considered your retail establishments to be the Auschwitz of Retail, and every time I've set foot in one of your stores this impression has proved to be well founded. Tonight I waited 35 goddamn minutes to pick up my DVDs, due to the endless, unnecessary lines and dimwitted employees found in every one of your retail locations. I have never had a positive experience at any Best Buy, on any level, except for the time I threw an optical mouse at a stack of software in frustration after thirty minutes of trying to get someones attention, and I can assure you I won't patronize your establishments ever again, except for the inevitable liquidation auction in five years.