Came home to another misdirected phone call to Brian Greene, String Theorist... this time a person left a message on my answering machine. He said:
Hello Professora Greeneee, I'm Roberto, I calling from Italy. Uh, I sented you an [unknown word... sounds like "island" or maybe "nylon"] your address in [another unknown word... sounds like "mat] at, uh, Columbia. I would, uh, like you take a look please, and then, uh, if you like, we can, uh, get together. Thank you very much. Bye.
Huh? Let's get a few things straight. First of all, from now on please pronounce my (meaning his) name correctly... the e at the end is silent. Secondly, if you found my (meaning his) address at Columbia, chances are you found his phone number too. They're in the same place. So stop calling me (meaning me) instead of him. Thirdly, you want to get together? I hope you're planning on flying to the U.S., cause it seems rather inconvenient for me (meaning him), a busy professor and expert physicist, to fly to Italy to talk with you. And finally, why didn't you leave a phone number for me (meaning him) to return the call? Seems much easier than flying to Italy.
Don't expect to be hearing back from me (meaning him... or me).
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Came home to another misdirected phone call to Brian Greene, String Theorist... this time a person left a message on my answering machine. He said:
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
This page rarely bows to peer pressure. But my friend over at CtBL (I don't even know why I'm bothering to link to him, since he hasn't updated in months) really wants me to post this link. It's not the first place to point out the misunderstood lyric, but it's probably the only site completely devoted to it.
J__, I hope you'll stop bitching now.
Posted by Brian at 2:49 PM
Monday, August 28, 2006
Brownie Let Down
I thought that Domino's Pizza's new Fudgems would be amazing. They look gooey and delicious. Ordered them over the weekend, and it turns out they're the biggest fast-food disappointment since the McGriddle. Much smaller than the ads make them seem, and crunchy, not gooey. Crunchy! Who likes crunchy brownies? Crunchy means they're overcooked. Heed my warning... stay away!
Posted by Brian at 12:13 PM
Friday, August 25, 2006
Recently, the phone at my apartment has been ringing off the hook. Well not really, but I have gotten three calls over the past two weeks from people looking for Brian Greene, String Theorist, including one from the booking office of Good Morning America. I'm not sure what caused the flurry of activity, but my hunch is they want his thoughts on the Pluto planetary discussion. Then again, I might be way off base.
Anyway, the reason I'm writing is that while I'm used to being mistaken for him and getting calls for him doesn't really bother me, what does bother me is that it's not that hard to find his real contact info. Here's his Columbia University faculty webpage. It's got everything you need to get in touch with him right there. But do me a favor when you call him; be more polite than you are to me. When I picked up one of the calls (at 10:00 on a Wednesday night), the first thing out of the caller's mouth was "You're in big trouble."
"I am?" I responded. "Why?"
"You're coming to [some university in Kentucky, I can't remember which one specifically] tomorrow, right?"
"Um, who are you looking for?"
"Is this Brian Greene the professor?"
"No, can't say that I am."
"Oh, sorry." [click]
How fucking obnoxious. You're speaking to the foremost expert on String Theory, an Ivy League professor, a Rhodes scholar, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and just a nice guy (at least he seems that way from his photo). Show some respect.
Posted by Brian at 2:38 PM
Thursday, August 24, 2006
If there was ever any doubt that 80s metal will never die, this Beatles tribute album is it. What a fucking roster on there.
Onto more recent music news, Method Man was interviewed for the new issue of Time Out New York. His answer to the second question has made me a lifelong fan because 1) he trash-talks my most hated celebrity, Diddy, and 2) he has alerted me to a new catchphrase. Here's what he had to say:
2. Some people thought you lost your chops on your last record. Did you feel like you had something to prove this time?
If these media motherfuckers are going to say Dem Franchize Boyz is dope and Meth is wack, their credibility is shit. I didn’t like my last album either, because I didn’t get to work with my people. It was a Bad Boy project—not to take anything away from Puffy, because he knows how to get the money, but Puff and Meth do not mix. Still, critics assassinating me because of one album? That was uncalled-for. They can eat a dick up till they hiccup.
Posted by Brian at 1:23 PM
Had my TRL fantasy football draft last night, and ended up with the 4th pick (out of 10) and another questionable team.
1. Tiki Barber (RB)
2. Bryan Westbrook (RB)
3. Anquan Boldin (WR)
4. Chester Taylor (RB)
5. Darrell Jackson (WR)
6. Todd Heap (TE)
7. Jake Delhomme (QB)
8. Frank Gore (RB)
9. Terry Glenn (WR)
10. Jake Plummer (QB)
11. Ernest Wilford (WR)
12. Minnesota (DEF)
13. Kellen Winslow (TE)
14. David Givens (WR)
15. Ryan Longwell (K)
My top RB is 31-years-old, my 2nd RB and 2nd WR are injured, and my defense stinks. And yet I still feel I'll be competitive. Fingers crossed...
P.S. I promise this is my last fantasy football-related post for a while.
Posted by Brian at 11:34 AM
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Last night I had the first of my 2 fantasy football drafts. It was a live offline draft, taking place at a random production office in Chelsea, with catering from Daisy May's BBQ and many Budweiser Tall Boys. And since a handful of managers are currently employees at Fuse, they brought along the Fuse blogger to track the event and write up his evaluation on the Fuse website. You can read his comments here.
As for my team, Boomer's Leather (if needed, explaination for the name here), here's who I got:
1. Edgerrin James (RB)
2. Steve Smith (WR)
3. Chris Chambers (WR)
4. Kevin Jones (RB)
5. Santana Moss (WR)
6. Marc Bulger (QB)
7. Corey Dillon (RB)
8. Drew Bennett (WR)
9. Chicago (Def)
10. Trent Green (QB)
11. Kellen Winslow (TE)
12. Sammi Parker (WR)
13. Mike Bell (RB)
14. Alex Smith (TE)
15. Lawrence Tynes (K)
I think the B- grade is about right. 6th pick out of 10 is a terrible position, so I'm not thrilled with Edge. Have good receivers, especially in a league where you start 3 receivers a week, and in fact we had a completely unexpected run of 7-straight WR picks to end the 2nd round. Never seen that before. I have a bunch of guys who should be stars if healthy, so hopefully they will be healthy (and stars). Cause I'd sure like to kick ass in this league.
Posted by Brian at 1:38 PM
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Wore my amazing new t-shirt today, and reaction ranged from exceedingly positive (from Andre 3000, of all people) to utterly confused ("What's a Mutombo?" asked a 16-year-old girl in the audience). I cannot wait to add it to my regular wardrobe rotation.
It also led a co-worker to send me this story about a dinner with Mutombo, Yao Ming, and Patrick Ewing that puts VH1 Classic's yearly "Matza and Metal" meals to shame.
Posted by Brian at 5:31 PM
Monday, August 21, 2006
Two quick music links here:
- Pitchfork's list of the top 200 songs of the 1960's. Lots of Beach Boys, including #1, plus a great choice at #2, and a welcome method of not equating artists' biggest hits with their best songs.
- Here is the classic Monty Python "Knights of the Round Table" song, as done by the characters of Star Trek. Really well done.
And if anyone has an extra single ticket to tonight's Foo Fighters concert at the Beacon, please let me know. Thanks!
Posted by Brian at 2:20 PM
Friday, August 18, 2006
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Here's a (very) quick tour of Buenos Aires (and Iguazu Falls) in 10 photos or less...
Plaza de Mayo. My hotel is the building directly behind the fountain.
One of many, MANY great statues in the city.
Random street art.
Congresso, their Congress building (duh, I know).
Puerto Iguazu, the sleepy town on the outskirts of Iguazu Falls.
Whose buildings are apparently made of bamboo trees.
Typical lazy Saturday afternoon in San Talermo Square.
And they like The Simpsons as much as we do.
Posted by Brian at 6:35 PM
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
With the announcement that Randy "Macho Man" Savage will be in the new cast of The Surreal Life (which I've heard will also feature Carrot Top), I'd say it's becoming less and less likely that the producers will follow my advice and invite me to participate. You see, after the conclusion of the first season, I wrote a letter to one of the heads of Alternative Programming at the WB (original network of the show) congratulating him on the success of the series and suggesting that in a future season, they might want to mix things up by throwing a non-celebrity into the mix. And I then listed a bunch of reasons why I would be the perfect candidate to be that non-celebrity. I have yet to receive a response.
I have now begun thinking... if I could pick a cast of The Surreal Life in which I would be a member, who would be in it? I limited it to people who realistically would agree to appear on the show, which eliminated people like David Bowie, Scott Weiland, Angelina Jolie, Conan O'Brien, and Don Mattingly. And this is the list of my six dream castmates:
1) William "The Fridge" Perry: The sports person. He's won a Super Bowl, he has one of the best nicknames in sports history, he's appeared in a celebrity boxing show and a Wrestlemania... oh, and he sang in "The Super Bowl Shuffle."
(Alt - Ickey Woods: Cause he created the Ickey Shuffle. Best. Endzone Dance. Ever!)
2) Mary Carey: The porn-related person. And it'd be nice to have a housemate that I already know and get along with.
(Alt - Natasha Henstridge: Not really porn-related, but oh man, I could watch Species over and over and over. And yet, for some reason I think she's probably too good for the show)
3) Joan Jett: The past-their-prime musician. She's got such an amazing voice, has recorded so many classic songs, and is pretty bad-ass. But seems friendly, too.
(Alt - Natalie Imbruglia: Man, I had such a crush on her when "Torn" came out. Those eyes, and the accent. What is she doing with the singer of Silverchair?)
4) Billy Zabka: The washed-up actor. He played the bad guy in The Karate Kid, Just One of the Guys, and Back To School. Then was never heard from again... until he was randomly nominated for an Oscar for Best Live-Action short back in 2004. And yet he still can't get work today. How could I not invite him?
(Alt - Wil Wheaton: He was in Stand By Me. He was in Toy Soldiers. He started one of the first celebrity blogs. And I could ask him how he prepared to shoot the scene where he pulls a leech off his penis.)
5) Bruce Campbell: The cult hero. Star of the Evil Dead trilogy and The Adventures of Brisco County Jr, among other things. He's hilarious, and probably is loaded with crazy on-set stories from his random B-level career.
(Alt - Robert Englund: Freddy Kruger was always my favorite horror movie character. And he'd probably freak out the other castmates.)
6) Danica McKellar: The 80s-tv-star. The more I think about The Wonder Years, the more I love it. Hopefully the music clearance issues will be resolved soon and we'll finally get the DVD's. Oh, and I can also talk to her about math.
(Alt - Willie Aames / Nicole Eggert: I really wanted to have a star from Charles in Charge. But Willie is now a hard-core Christian and former star of Bibleman, which could get tedious, while Nicole hasn't aged very well)
Posted by Brian at 1:03 PM
Monday, August 14, 2006
Back in town from Buenos Aires. Photos to come, hopefully tonight. Had an amazing time... great to get away from NYC for a while and just relax. And not spend a lot of money (liters of beer there cost about $3.00, the subway 23 cents).
Speaking of the subway, last night after I'd unpacked I met up with my sister to have dinner. On the ride back (on an uptown 1), I witnessed one of the saddest pick-up attempts I've ever seen. On a nearly-empty train with me were 3 college-aged girls (one of whom was a visitor from Ireland) sitting across from me and a dorky-looking guy seated a few seats down from me. The Irish girl was asking her friends how they live in a city filled with so many good-looking guys, and the girls said that usually it's not so good, but today they happened to find a particularly potent spot. The guy interrupted the girls, saying that he thought he had been on the same subway with them earlier in the day going to a concert downtown (he was right). After briefly discussing the concert, the guy crossed the train to sit next to them. He asked them about their earlier conversation about the good-looking guys, then said "I hope you included me in that grouping." To which the Irish girl responded:
Actually, you're keeping it real for us.
And even though I burst out laughing, the guy did not catch the insult at all and, thinking it was a compliment, continued with his attempt. By that point the most attractive of the three girls had taken herself out of the conversation, focusing on applying make-up, but the other two were trapped. By the time I reached my stop, the guy had lectured the girls on "Tis better to have loved and lost" and explained how he's a "self-proclaimed sweetheart" and was still working his magic when I unfortunately had to depart. Wish I could've seen how it ended.
Posted by Brian at 2:17 PM
Friday, August 04, 2006
This site will be on temporary hiatus while I'm on vacation in Buenos Aires.
Back on the air August 14th.
Feel free to browse the archives... hopefully most of the links aren't dead.
Posted by Brian at 12:46 PM
TRL Moment of the Week
With Justin Timberlake on the show on Monday, of course we had to ask him about his reaction to the Lance Bass news. But of course we had to handle the situation "delicately." So VJDamien asks JT what he thought, and JT, looking shocked, joked "He's gay?" After sincerely saying he's happy for him, VJDamien asked if he had called Lance since the news broke, and JT admitted he had not. VJDamien exclaimed "Come on, you've got to give him a call... he's gay now!"
We did not reference this old commercial.
And from the TRL Graveyard, our initial plan with JT was this: since in his new song he claims he's bringing sexy back, let's see what else he can bring back. We have a wheel of things that have gone out of style, and JT must spin the wheel and do whatever it lands on to show that he can make it cool again. The items:
- hackey sack
- acid-washed jean jacket
- saying "waaassssssuuuup!!!" (my personal favorite)
Sadly, JT killed it because he didn't want to wear a jean jacket.
Posted by Brian at 11:28 AM
Thursday, August 03, 2006
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
In honor of today being MTV's 25th birthday, here are some of my favorite MTV memories:
- I first started watching MTV when I was in kindergarten (fall of 1984)... we basically moved a mile down the road from where I was born, into a community that for some reason was a test area for South Florida cable television. Immediately I was hooked.
- My sister and I used to record our favorite videos onto VHS. We had dozens of these tapes lying around the house. One time she got mad at me because I accidentally taped over Corey Hart's "Sunglasses at Night," which she claims they hardly ever play, with Genesis' "Land of Confusion." I have no idea what happened to those tapes.
- Circa 1988, MTV ran a Top 500 Videos of All Time countdown. It was in the middle of my Def Leppardhysteriaa (pun intended... sorry). So I was utterly annoyed that "Pour Some Sugar on Me" came in at #6. U2's "With or Without You" ruled that countdown. Highly questionable choice.
- I was obsessed with Remote Control. Thought it was the greatest game show of all time. Wish I had been old enough at the time to be a contestant. Oh, and one of my cousins became the Remote Control grand champion. He is now a famous screenwriter. Guess being a couch potato pays off.
- I was also obsessed with Just Say Julie. But I think I was the only one.
- I rang up $20 in calls to MTV's 900 number trying to win the Win the Batmobile contest. What a great prize: actual car from the 1989 movie, filled with cash. I didn't win, and my parents were not thrilled to get the bill.
- The first episode of The Real World I ever saw was the Seattle episode in which Stephen slapped Lyme-Diseased Irene. Reality television at its best.
- When I interviewed for my summer internship in MTV's Series Development department, one of the questions I was asked was "What do you think of Sifl and Olly?" I hated that stupid puppet show, and against my bettjudgmentent, I told her so. I guess she liked my honesty (or my moxie), because I got the job. And so began my tenure here.
- MTV2 used to be only available inside the building and on special satellite systems. When it launched on cable in January 2000, they played every video ever made (all 19,000 at the time) in their entirety in alphabetical order by song title. It took them 4 months. And I missed all but the first four days because I left to study abroad in Scotland. I'm not sure why that bothered me so much.
- This was the countdown for my very first TRL show:
10. No Doubt "It's My Life"
9. B2K "Badaboom
8. Kelis "Milkshake"
7. Good Charlotte "Hold On"
6. JC Chasez "Some Girls (Dance with Women)
5. Clay Aiken "Invisible"
4. Britney Spears f/ Madonna "Me Against the Music"
3. Beyonce "Me Myself and I"
2. G-Unit "Them Thangs"
1. Blink 182 "Feeling This"
Mandy Moore was the guest, and we also premiered FeFe Dobson's video "Everything." I have since worked on 566 episodes. And the countdowns are still just as crappy.
Anyway, happy birthday MTV.
Posted by Brian at 11:22 AM