Friday, June 30, 2006

TRL Moment of the Week
First I hated Hilary Duff when I heard she changed the words to "My Generation" to "Hope I don't die before I get old."
Then I hated Hilary Duff for changing the lyrics of "Our Lips Are Sealed" in the terrible remake duet with her sister.
Now I hate Hilary Duff because on Monday, she had the audacity to say this on TRL about the remake she and her sister recorded of Madonna's "Material Girl":
"It's such a big song to record… it's a little bit of a hip-hop version, a little bit of guitars. It's not so, um… it's not as simple as the first one was."
Oh really? It's so simple, is it? If it's so simple, then why don't you ever write your own fucking songs instead of butchering other artists'?

Thursday, June 29, 2006

More Gore
Add "Yes, I play a street-wise pimp" to my list of Things I Incorrectly Thought I'd Never Hear Al Gore Say.

I used to think that being caged in a Pakistani prison would be a nightmare... but after reading this story, it turns out that the prisoners there are just a bunch of pranksters.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

To all you people who moved out to L.A. with the hopes of being a star, only to find that the dream isn't coming true, cheer up... you could be like these other failures and end up in the new Red Hot Chili Peppers video.

Wanna creep out your friends and family? Then download a David Lynch ringtone (my favorite is "My teeth are bleeding!"). Although there are a bunch of quotes from his movies he could also use:
"Harry, I really have to urinate."
"Baby wants to fuck!"
"Rockin good news."

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

As I'm heading off to my Def Leppard / Journey concert, here's some music for you to enjoy... the Flaming Lips appearance on Beverly Hills, 90210. You can't ask for a better review than Steve Sanders' quote at the end:
"I've never been a big fan of alternative music, but these guys rocked the house!"

Actual phone conversation with my mother last night:

Mom: So what are your plans for the week?
Me: Tomorrow night I'm seeing a concert...
Mom: Who's playing?
Me: Def Leppard and Journey.
Mom: Wow, that's a huge show. Those are both really big bands.
Me: Um… yeah. Can you even name a Journey song?
Mom: Let's see… didn't they do the songs from Rocky?
Me: (surprised) No, but that's close. They sound just like them.
Mom: So who did the Rocky songs?
Me: Survivor.
Mom: Oh. Then what does Journey sing?
Me: "Separate Ways," "Open Arms," "Faithfully," "Lights," "Lovin Touchin Squeezin."
Mom: I don't know them.
Me: Okay, now name a Def Leppard song.
Mom: (confidently) I don't know the names of the songs, but they named their albums Def Leppard I, Def Leppard II, Def Leppard III
Me: No, that's Led Zeppelin.
Mom: Oh. Nevermind.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Bill Simmons' latest column lists his favorite YouTube moments. Lots of them are sports related, most of them you've seen a million times, but it's still a good list.
On that note, here are 2 good links I found (and by found, I mean stole from the latest issue of Rolling Stone, which probably means everyone's already seen them)
- The Fast & the Curious (from the same guy who did The Shining trailer)
- Snakes on a Plane audition

Friday, June 23, 2006

TRL Moment of the Week
On Tuesday, Disney Channel stars Ashley Tisdale (of High School Musical fame) and Miley Cyrus (of "Hannah Montana" and daughter of Billy Ray) were guest co-hosts. Here is a story as told to me from the other writer / floor-producer, who was in charge of that show:
During rehearsal, Ashley complained to him after her first read that the copy on the cue card was too small and that she was having trouble reading it. Before rehearsing the next segment, he took the cue card over to her so that she could better prepare. Looking at the card, she said "This looks much bigger now. Why is the font on this card bigger?"
He replied, "Um, because I'm standing much closer to you."
Embarrassed, she said "Oh yeah, I guess that's it, huh?"

Update: I was recently informed that at one point backstage during yesterday's show (with guests Adam Sandler, Kate Beckinsale, Nelly Furtado, Timbaland, and NBA Finals MVP Dwyane Wade), Wade walked up to Kate and told her how much he loved her song, "Promiscuous." Only at TRL...

Thursday, June 22, 2006

A bunch of people have been linking to this site with a huge collection of 80s videos. I think this is a much better list... although in my mind they chose the wrong Chemical Brothers video (should've gone with "Let Forever Be," probably my favorite video of all time) and left off Genesis "Land of Confusion." (which has a new, not-nearly-as-good video directed by Todd McFarlane for the remake by Disturbed).

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Wang Chung
Yes, everybody in the blogosphere is posting this painfully awkward Connie Chung video. But just in case any readers somehow haven't seen it yet, I can't in good conscience let you miss it. Enjoy (if you can)!

Home Sweet Homeless
Recently a tenant in my building slipped a note under everyone's door complaining about a problem with homeless people sleeping in the entryway our building.
First, some quick info. When you enter my building, you walk through a set of outer doors into an entryway where the doorman stands (from 6am until midnight), which leads to a second set of doors to the main lobby. When the doorman is off-duty, these inner doors are locked, but there is a buzzer to each apartment next to them. The outer doors always remain unlocked; since the buzzers are inside, there would be no way to contact apartments from outside.
Anyway, the note described this tenant's frequent encounters with homeless people who have been sleeping, and his fruitless attempts to get our landlord to put locks on the outer doors. He claims that he calls 911 everytime he finds someone sleeping in the lobby... sometimes they come to his aide, sometimes they don't. The landlord claims that it is too expensive to change the outer doors and that the only solution is to continue calling the police. This doesn't surprise me at all, as our landlord is ridiculously cheap, constantly stalling on any repairs that cost money until repeated complaints are filed.
Anyway, the letter included a slip to sign to show our solidarity as a building. I was totally sympathetic to the man, ready to jump on board and sign his petition (at least after I received my lease renewal, which should be arriving any day now)... until I got to this paragraph:
In particular, there has been one man who has been here all winter and who is starting to show belligerent behavior. Yesterday, Wednesday morning, and a week earlier, when I went to walk my dog, he followed me, looking angry as if he was about to hurt me. And, yesterday he also blocked the entrance as I tried to re-enter the building. He appeared agitated and threatening - his fly was open - and he only moved away when I spoke to him in a loud voice. It was a frightening experience, my hands shook as I tried to open the lobby door with my key. How would you have felt?
Now I know I shouldn't be negative, since this did not happen to me personally and I have no idea who this tenant is, how old he is or what his life has been like. But come on... do you have to be sooooooooooo melodramatic? It's totally off-putting. I don't want to tell you to grow a set, but...

Monday, June 19, 2006

I saw An Inconvenient Truth over the weekend, and it freaked me out. Completely. All of the statistics and drastic world changes Gore discusses will take place in the next 50 years, which is within my lifetime. At least I hope I live another 50 years. I think. Maybe I don't want to live long enough for the ice caps to melt and for the ocean to submerge a huge portion of the earth and for the average temperature to increase 12 degrees and for massive famines and hurricanes. Of course it's possible Gore is pulling a Michael Moore and is only using data that supports his theory. Maybe glaciers that have melted are reforming in other places. But I doubt it.
I will say that while at first I was bummed, now I'm annoyed that Gore claims he is not running for President in 2008. These slide-show presentations are all well and good, and it's nice to educate people, but he must know that it won't bring about the changes he wants. He needs to push legislation through himself. He needs to step up. Please.

And one side note: the film includes this hilarious clip from Futurama. "Gwobo wapa?" Good stuff! (the first couple seconds are messed up, but then it works)

Friday, June 16, 2006

TRL Moment of the Week
On Wednesday we had the girls of "Making the Band 3" drop by (fortunately without Diddy in tow). During the interview we asked them if they had picked a name for the group yet. Excitedly, they tried to say the name in unison, but it came out like dadmurpshdokwn. Asked to repeat it, one of the girls exclaimed "Danity Kane!"
Danity Kane? What the fuck does that mean? It has to be one of the worst band names of all time. Hopefully it'll make the next Onion A.V. list.

2 quick music links:
- All music lovers living in NYC, I'm sure I'll see you here next Sunday.
- Culture Club fans, can this be real? And what the hell is "kareoki"?

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Maclay-ed to Rest
One of my friends from Scotland sent me this article... this is the building I lived in when I was studying at the University of Glasgow my junior year of college. It's actually a good thing the blaze didn't happen during my stay... I once refused to get out of bed during a 7am fire drill and received a letter from the administration about my poor fire safety behavior, so it's possible I would've stayed in my room for the real thing. But come on... the drill was at 7am!

Received this incredibly creative promotional item for the release of the unrated Hills Have Eyes DVD. Yes, it's as sticky as it looks.
(sorry for the poor picture quality... my camera phone sucks)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

One more thing today... gotta give props to my boss. Yesterday a co-worker sent out an e-mail with this article, calling it the best headline of the day.
Boss replied: "Must've been the ugly tree." Beware
This is a warning against Last week I placed an order for the new Tilly & the Wall cd and a book for my father, To Hate Like This Is To Be Happy Forever (since my sister went to Duke, he is now a hard-core fan). I received a package from them; instead of my items, they sent me the book Essential Psychopharmacology of Antipsychotics and Mood Stabilizers. With the cover creased. Which might be an interesting read given my recent Melatonin problem, but it's not what I wanted.
Now I'm in a fight with their customer service, since I'm trying to cancel my order but also want them to pay me the money it will cost to ship the book back. It's impossible to talk to them: fill out their online complaint form, and you get back a form letter ignoring your problem. And good luck trying to find a phone number (which I finally did, thanks to a complaint forum). All this because of their claim that all their books are 10% cheaper than Amazon's.
Serves me right for being so thrifty.

This Letter is Da Bomb
I haven't read The Da Vinci Code. I don't plan on reading it. I've heard it's engrossing but terribly written. I don't want to simply jump on the bandwagon (same reason why I haven't read a single Harry Potter book). I don't plan on seeing the movie. I wish the whole craze would just fade away.
Which is why I was so thrilled to see someone point this out in a letter to Roger Ebert in a recent Answer Man column:

One of the great ironies of Dan Brown's book is that it assaults you with its greatest piece of idiocy before you've even picked it up. The man's name is Leonardo, please. "da Vinci" (note the lower-case "d"), is NOT his family name, it's his hometown. He was born in Vinci, Italy, in 1452, in a time before Europeans had started surnaming themselves. Brown's error is on par with writing a book on the life of Christ called The Of Nazareth Code, or assuming St. Joan was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. "Of Arc." It's amazing that anyone could take seriously the historical claims of a work whose title screams out, "penned by an historical ignoramus!"

What an amazing catch!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

I've recently seen concerts from Joan Jett and the new Guns N Roses, and the rumors continue to swirl about Genesis reuniting. Which led me to ponder: which bands (of which all original members are still alive) would I most like to see reunite in their classic line-up and perform live? Here's the list I came up with:

1) GnR (with Matt Sorum on drums, not Steven Adler): Because I was obsessed with them growing up. Because my mom wouldn't let me see them in concert when I was a kid. And because I'm sure something insane would happen, either with each other or with the audience.
(As much as people say this will never happen, I think it will. Given Axl performing with Izzy lately and his reconciliation with Sorum, I predict they'll come back together when they are inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. Which is just 7 years away…)

2) The Police: True, Sting now does plenty of Police material in his solo shows. But his touring bands do not capture the frantic energy of the original trio. And maybe they'll actually kill each other onstage.

3) Pink Floyd: Until recently, they would be #1 on my list. But after their lackluster showing at Live 8, and the fact that I will have seen live shows by both David Gilmour (with Richard Wright) and Roger Waters (with Nick Mason) this year, and the fact that tickets would be so astronomically priced, they slide a couple spots. Now if they managed to get Syd Barrett with them, that'd be another story.

4) Soundgarden: I was fairly late joining the alternative movement, instead listening to my 80s collection well into the 90s. I have since caught amazing shows by Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots, Smashing Pumpkins, Alice in Chains, and most of the other big names… but I never got to Soundgarden.

5) The Smiths: Similar situation to the Police situation. Morrissey does the songs at his solo shows, but it's not the same.

Honorable mentions:
- Runaways (kind of complicated… outside of Joan and Lita, who gets in? Cherie? Vicki? Michael from The Bangles?)
- Stone Roses (see Police / Smiths, but for music I don't rate as highly)
- Talking Heads (ditto previous entry)
- Black Flag (because Tommy would kill me if I didn't put them on this list. I would enjoy the show, I'm sure)
- Genesis (I'm not that familiar with the music from the original line-up, but it would be cool to see Peter Gabriel and Phil Collins perform together. Collins says it will happen. We'll see.)
- Wham! (so lame I can't even believe I'm actually including them)
- STP (I saw them perform twice while still together, so it's not like I'm dying to see them again… but they are my favorite band of the 90s)

Monday, June 12, 2006

Some notes from visiting my parents over the weekend:
- Florida weather still sucks. Cloudy, rainy, 94 degrees and humid. And there's already a tropical storm heading their way.
- I hate being so pale. Went jet-skiing with my sister on a completely overcast day, put sunscreen on, but missed a spot and now have a painful, awkward sunburn on the front of my upper left arm.
- I keep getting better at deflecting my parents' unwanted conversations toward my sister. Lectures about why I should be careful on my planned vacation to Buenos Aires with my roommate turn into why my sister cannot go to Buenos Aires by herself. Questions about what my next career step is turn into questions about what continuing education classes might benefit my sister. She hates it, and I love doing it.
- My mom claimed to have a cure for my sleep troubles (in that it takes me at least an hour to fall asleep on most nights)... Melatonin. It does absolutely nothing.
- My grandma gave my sister and me a scare when we went to pick her up at her apartment. We could hear the TV blasting from the hall, but when we knocked, no answer. Rang the doorbell, no answer. Pounded on the door and called out her name, no answer. Finally I called her, and she picked up on the 4th ring. Said she hadn't heard us. I hate being irritated and relieved at the same time.
- I really need to go home more often than I do. I'm down to averaging 2 trips a year (this was my first since Thanksgiving). I'm very lucky that I have such a great relationship with my parents, and I do get to see them a lot because they come to New York often (my dad is at least every 6 weeks for business). But it's not enough. I wish my job was more flexible in allowing time off... or maybe I shouldn't be so reluctant to "waste" vacation days going home.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Still High & Dry
Radiohead's concerts at the Theater @ MSG are now 5 days away, and I have thus far been unsuccessful trying to snag a ticket without paying an outrageous amount. Since Jen had success snagging one after an online plea, I will do the same thing. Anyone have 1 (or 2!) extra tickets to the 6/13 show (Tuesday night) you would be willing to part with for a reasonable price? Or maybe we can work out an arrangement for some MTV perks? If so, e-mail me*... I'd be forever grateful (well maybe not forever, but very).

* Note: I'm leaving for Florida tonight to visit my parents for the weekend, but I will get back to you.

Wow, so apparently Diet Coke + Mentos = badass!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Bubble Trouble
I will never get any more work done at the office thanks to this.

For all you LSTT Jodie Sweetin fans (and I know you're still there, cause I get at least one keyword search for her every month), good news: she's back on TV!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Two quick 6/6/06 notes:
1) Curious that the Angels and Devils (er, Devil Rays) are playing a game tonight. Clever, Major League Baseball! *
2) For fans of damnation, here's a montage of all the times Jack Bauer says "Damn it!" in the first 4 seasons of 24.

* Update: Good conquered evil as the Angels blew out the Devil Rays.

Yesterday I received a very curious e-mail from a friend (who will remain anonymous) that read:
i dreamt about you last night. you had been missing for awhile, and then once people found you we started sharing an office. when i came to work in the morning, you started complaining to me about the new "boxer shorts surcharge tax."
And now I'm very confused. Any Freudians or dream experts out there who can decipher this?

Monday, June 05, 2006

Back from a long week in San Diego for this summer's Beach House (MTV Summer Sizzle '06, y'all!). Here are some random Cheers and Jeers from the trip.

Jeers to the people surrounding me on my flight out there. The woman next to me was carrying the contents of her purse in one hand as she rushed onto the plane, then couldn't believe she lost her credit card somewhere between the terminal bathroom and her seat (the 2nd time she'd lost a card at the airport in less than a week). After canceling the card and searching all through the flight, it turned up under her seat. The seniors sitting across the aisle couldn't stop laughing and repeating lines from the in-flight movie, Big Momma's House 2. The 40-year-old diagonally across from me was subtly picking his nose and eating it... and not real boogers, but the stringy snot stuff. Hideous.

Jeers to the audience member we were using as a contestant for a Date My Body stunt who, during rehearsal, got a raging boner in his tiny swimsuit.

Cheers to our producer for instructing the segment producer, in all sincerity, to make sure the kid doesn't get a boner during the live show because we can't show that on-air.

Jeers to Beach House casualties. We lost one VJ to food poisoning, one to fooallergieses, one to injuries sustained on the wave pool. Dangerous stuff out there.

Cheers to the housekeeper in my hotel room. She even rolled up my tube of toothpaste to make it easier to use. And yet I still forgot to tip her.

Cheers to SPF 45. No sunburn for me! No tan either, but I'm used to that.

Jeers to sketchy Mexican food. It wreaked havoc on my stomach. That'll teach me to eat at a place called Moose McGillycuddy's.

Cheers to In-N-Out Burger. Cause it's so good.

Jeers to desperate times calling for desperate measures. Former Pearl Jam / Candlebox drummer Dave Krusen was drumming for Cheyenne during her performance on Wednesday. My, how the mighty have fallen.

Cheers to causing Chris Brown discomfort. He made an entrance on a paraglider. With his microphone on, everyone on the crew could hear him writhe in pain, saying "Ow, my kids are disintegrating! Ow, I'll never have a family!" Good... we don't need him to be spawning.

Jeers to MTV's dubious hiring practices. In a room filled with college girls hired to book audience members, I overheard one girl ask the room "Wait, is there a 'c' in 'tickets'?"

Jeers to the homeless in San Diego. According to my boss, when he was using a public restroom one of them entered, pulled down his pants, and started washing his balls in the sink.

Cheers to faux pas. Ashlee Simpson dropped by on Friday, sporting her new look. Live on the air, VJDamien said, "Wow, you look great. This is probably the best I've ever seen you." Apparently he didn't know she'd had her nose and lips altered.* When I told him, he was mortified, sulking backstage and saying "I can't believe I did that... I didn't know!"
* Note: she does look much improved.