This month I posted 28 entries, watched 4 videos.
Sorry for the lack of Quick Posts but between moving and being on vacation, I haven't had much time for general surfing. These will return when I return.
Posted December 30, 2002
We now know that Mr. Lieberman will be running for president in 2004 and I am in a quandry. On the one hand, he is a huge conservative and his politics are generally the polar opposite of mine. On the other he is both a minority and a jew, which is something we have never had in office. If this were a perfect world that was completely color blind then I would not vote for Joe, but it is not. The truth is, it would be great to have someone in office who is not a Christian. I know he is still a "stuffy old white guy" but we must take baby steps.
This whole perdicament reminds of when black people first started appearing on television and in movies. Although people disliked the stereotypical or derogetory roles they played, many applauded their presence alone. There was a lot of contention over the subject and I am sure this will happen again over the next two years.
So I'll ask you: should race and ethnicity play a role in your vote for the president?
Posted December 30, 2002
It's been raining lately. In fact, it has rained fairly consistently over the last 48 hours. This is disappointing. It wasn't so bad when I lived here because the days evened out, but right now we're in a particularly rainy period and it makes vacation a little rough.
As a result, yesterday turned into movie day as my mum and sister saw Bowling For Columbine while my dad and I saw Die Another Day. BFC is amazing and DAD was just fine. It was certainly not the best Bond movie ever. Last night we went to Hakkisan, a swanky japanese place. It was really good. Then I went home and watched Channel 4 for a bit followed by Spinal Tap on tv. God I love British TV.
Today we took a cab tour, which was boring for me as I've seen most of the city, but I read and the family enjoyed it. We've spent the rest of the day in Soho eating and looking in smaller shops. I got Jellyfish's Spilt Milk for £5 ($8).
Tonight is dinner and a play. I'm pumped. And now it's back to the rain for me.
Posted December 28, 2002
I know I shouldn't be posting this much while on vacation, but you'll have to forgive me. Why? No reason aside from the amount of love you feel for me.
Last night we went to Wagamama, and it did not disappoint, followed by the Abridged Works of Shakespeare, a play at the Criterion Theatre. The play was just fine. Entertaining at best. There were definitely some funny bits but overall it was just unispired. Of the 40 odd plays they presented, they only really had two that were any good. Everything in between was a waste of time. I'm not really upset though because I was not expecting this to be very profound.
Today we had our day trip to Oxford. Although I spent two months in London during the summer of 2001, I never once made it to Oxford. Luckily, before we left we had decided to visit our old neighbors who live North of London and Oxford ended up being the best common location. Now that I've gone, I know that it is beautiful but unnecessary for a tourist, unless you are really into old buildings and beautiful scenery. Truth be told, my sister and I both agreed that we would transfer there immediately (too bad I have already graduated). The campus is beautiful and one of the halls was used for the dining room in the Harry Potter films.
Now we are back and I am going to be meeting up with my friend Amanda who is living here in London. I am excited to hear all of her good stories and see if she has a newfound accent.
Posted December 27, 2002
Ah, today was a major shopping day. I bought a number of things from my favorite stores in London. The two that I knew I had to visit were Magma Books and Boxfresh, both hip to design. The first is in book form the second is wearable. I also found a new clothing store I like called Mooks. A lot of interesting t-shirts and stuff.
Tonight we will dine at my favorite restaurant, Wagamama. Mmm, delumpscious. Then it is off to the theatre. Tomorrow = Oxford, which is good b/c I've never been there.
Enuff rambling, see ya.
Posted December 26, 2002
I am here, in London, and typing quickly because this is costing 60p a minute. Things are nice but everything is closed for Boxing Day. We took a bus tour today since the fam hasn't spent too much time here.
I'll update more a bit later in the week, when I can get to easyEverything (internet cafe).
Posted December 22, 2002
I am posting this from the new pro version of NetNewsWire. So far, it seems pretty cool. I like the New Headlines feature as well as this weblog editor. I will definitely pay for this software as I use it all the time.
Ok, this was just a test and it worked, so whee.
p.s. I made it back to Chicago safe and sound. I will be leaving for London on Wednesday for a vacation with the family. I'll try to post from there. I've missed easyEverything.
Posted December 21, 2002
I am getting into the car to drive home, right now. My permanent residence is still undecided but I am definitely bringing all my stuff home right now. See you Sunday night.
Posted December 20, 2002
I'm sorry about this guys, but these last couple days have been really hectic. More on all of this in the next day or so, but for now you'll have to enjoy my best music of 2002 without descriptions. Oh, and West Wash folks get 8 extra albums that I didn't list there.
1. Flaming Lips - Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
2. Rye Coalition - On Top
3. ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of The Dead - Source Tags & Codes
4. Mum - Finally We Are No One
5. Spoon - Kill the Moonlight
6. Sleater-Kinney - One Beat
7. Imperial Teen - On
8. Brendan Benson - Lapalco
9. John Vanderslice - Life and Death of an American Fourtracker
10. Piebald - We Are the Only Friends We Have
11. Damien Jurado and Gathered in Song - I Break Chairs
12. Enon - High Society
13. DJ Shadow - The Private Press
14. Ben Kweller - Sha Sha
15. The Promise Ring - Wood/Water
16. RjD2 - Deadringer
17. French Kicks - One Time Bells
18. Iron & Wine - The Creek Drank the Cradle
19. N.E.R.D. - In Search Of
20. Beck - Sea Change
21. Cornelius - Point
22. Elvis Costello - When I Was Cruel
23. Milemarker - Satanic Versus
24. Cake - Comfort Eagle
25. Black Heart Procession - Amore del Tropico
Nik Freitas - Here's Laughing at You
The Waxwings - Shadows Of
Hot Snakes - Suicide Invoice
Special Note: (On my list or released in Europe in 01)
Wilco - Yankee Foxtrot Hotel
Ash - Free All Angels
Ed Harcourt - Here Be Monsters
Posted December 19, 2002
I apologize in advance for not having any descriptions, but I am in a bit of rush to leave the house right now. Here is my list, sans details. I will be adding them later this evening. Enjoy.
2. Punch-Drunk Love
3. Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys
4. Y Tu Mama Tambien
5. Spirited Away
7. Bowling for Columbine
8. Blade 2
9. Igby Goes Down
Best Huge Hollywood Movie: Spiderman
Best color scheme: One Hour Photo
Posted December 18, 2002
I have been building my lists of things that tickled my fancy in 2002. There are three big lists and I will present them today, tomorrow and Friday. I wanted to include video games, but I don't think I've played enough games to warrant a top anything list. I might slip some names in over the weekend though, if you're lucky. Enough jabbering, here are the top 10 television shows of 2002.
- Six Feet Under
Wow, do I love this show. The intro alone might have made it in my top 10. It is certainly the best 1 hour drama available. I am just upset they don't have the 1st season on DVD yet.
- Curb Your Enthusiasm
This is the funniest show of the year. It is Seinfeld on steroids. Larry David is a brilliant man. Who else would consider having a lodged pubic hair transcend multiple show plots? No one.
This show is just so much fun. It is no technical masterpiece and there are no beautiful visuals. There are just a ton of very likeable characters. Oh, and the $10 bets are laugh-out-loud funny (note: I don't like that phrase, but I have always wanted to use it.).
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer
This show is so well done. The writing is fantatic and the soap opera sagas are so much fun. I would also like to say that I would never have thought of watching this show a year ago. Give it a chance.
I didn't watch last season at all but after two months of the second season I am totally hooked. Last night's episode was one of the best hours of tv ever. So much drama and it wasn't even sweeps.
- Andy Richter Controls the Universe
I was worried this show might be a disappointment, but the first season and the few shows I've seen this year have been outstanding. Consistent funny. Bring in the money. Bunny.
- American Idol
Welcome to the guilty pleasures department. This show is so incredibly horrible but so spectacular at the same. I can't wait for the next season.
- The Daily Show
This is the only source of television news I get all day. I can get the same information as I'd get on CNN, just without the bullshit and with tons of humor. The show completely earned the Peabody it received.
- Malcolm in the Middle
Here's another show that would be nothing without the acting. The plots are relatively funny, but they could be making dick and fart jokes for all I care.
- The Sopranos
After 15 months, the crew brought us a fairly mediocre season. I enjoyed most of the episodes, but it just didn't have the same kick as the first few. So, the show gets the lowly 10 spot. Sorry dudes.
If you break that down by networks it goes Fox (4), HBO (3), Comedy Central (1), NBC (1), UPN (1). That's not exactly how I expected things to turn out.
Also, here are three shows that I have been watching recently, but I just got into them and one of them is now canceled. Scrubs, Monk and Sports Night. I hope you liked the list, leave comments below.
Posted December 18, 2002
I have two music related posts, both of which should probably be posted in the mini-reviews section but I fear that none of you read them. So, in an effort to get thse tidbits to a larger audience, here they are.
1. Last night I went to see Rye Coalition at Northsix. It was a religious experience. The only thing missing was a decent crowd (of the 50 people who stuck around until the end, about 10 were clapping and one was sleeping). Nonetheless, I was blown away. Rye Coalition has so much energy and puts on what may be the best live show I've seen all year. I can guarantee that you will see them in my Top Music of 2002 list, coming this Friday. If you want to know about the two opening bands, you can read the mini-review, which I'll post in a little bit.
2. If you're looking for the perfect cheap gift for your indierock boy/girlfriend, I suggest Yo La Tango's new Nuclear War ep. It is super cheap, politically aware and really good. You can't go wrong.
A collaborative screensaver that serves up images from a collection of art "intended to inspire, provoke, engage and promote." Some of the stuff is great and it's much better than a Ann Geddes screensaver.
Posted December 17, 2002
You can divide the viewers of the film Adaptation into three groups.
- You saw the movie and didn't get the joke. You were just trying to follow/enjoy the story and left the movie thinking "eh."
- You saw the movie and got the joke. You thought it was brilliant and a fresh look at a common event.
- You got the joke, but thought it was a cop out. Instead of doing a proper adaptation Charlie Kaufman took the easy road and didn't do his job.
I fall into the second category but author Stephanie Zacharek falls into the third. The dude in front of me fell into the first. I just finished reading Stephanie's article at Salon and have started to question my original thoughts. Her claim is that although a screenwriter has a right to make an adaptation his/her own, Kaufman went too far. He made Susan Orlean's book about Charlie Kaufman.
I will concede this point to her. Yes, the movie is a bit self-indulgent and no it is not a faithful or good adaptation of The Orchid Thief. The issue that Zacharek ignores is that the movie was not telling the story of the book; it was telling the story of an adaptation. And yes, everyone knows that writing and especially adaptation is tough, but no one has been able to show us the journey that a writer must endure in order to produce a piece. Kaufman and Jonze do that and as a result the movie is incredibly interesting.
It's no fun when you see an adaptation that makes a mockery of the book. Someone high up realized that The Orchid Thief could not be faithfully adapted (hell, Kaufman was the third to try). So, he/she left it in the hands of Kaufman to do something interesting with the book. If anyone could turn a book about a love affair with flowers in an interesting movie, it would be Kaufman and Jonze. And so the team makes a movie that has the book as the main character. It is not an adaptation. It is the story of adapting.
If you'd like to follow the saga that is Adaptation, head over to the blog regarding:Adaptation.
Posted December 16, 2002
Over the last 3 months, I have been watching the entire Buffy the Vampire Slayer series. I first watched it on DVD and then on FX. I have now seen nearly all of the episodes and the end is bittersweet. I definitely love the show, despite the fact that I often get a cringe whenever the word "Buffy" leaves my mouth. The problem is that I had been watching about two episodes per weekday for the last 3 months and it feels odd to not have Buffy filling my daily routine.
This predicament is appropriate right now as I'm going home. It feels like coming to New York was time for me to watch the entire Buffy series, be quarantined for Accutane dosage and study for the LSAT. Or that is something I tell myself to make leaving a bit easier. Speaking of which, leaving is getting much harder. I am considering other "not-fully-leaving" options. For instance, instead of bringing all of my stuff home with me this weekend, I will drive home, go to London with the fam, and then take a leisurely road-trip back to New York after London, while deciding whether or not I shall stay.
Uh, decisions. Isn't it funny how posts about non-personal items immediately become personal when your mind is running crazy? Ha ha.
Google's annual data analysis. It may sound boring, unless you want to track the Las Ketchup craze or the top television shows.
Poweruff Girls Movie
The hobo formerly known as JoJo is no mo'. From this day fo'wo'ed, I shall be known as MOJO JOJO! Best. Line. Ever.
Posted December 12, 2002
It's not set in stone, but it seems that I am indeed moving back to Chicago. I'm drinving back a week from Saturday and it seems that Best Friend Will is going to be joining me for the drive. Now that I'm fairly certain I'll be gone in 10 days, I want to take full advantage of the time I have left. And so, here is a schedule of events I may or may not attend. I couldn't go to them all, but I would if I could.
Martin Sexton (if I can get in)
About Schmidt (movie)
French Kicks & The National History
The Rapture & LCD Soundsystem
MC Paul Barman
Narc (movie, Q&A w/director)
Eating Out w/Janeane Garofalo
Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players
Hot Socky (you don't know them, don't worry)
The Two Towers (movie)
Piebald w/Elliot & Koufax
Les Savy Fav
25th Hour (movie)
Dinner at home with Uncles
Posted December 9, 2002
I am free. The LSAT is behind me and no one is looking to hire anyone until the first of the year. My Uncle Ted is in California until the 17th and my Uncle Mike is working on a big trial this week. I have absolutely no obligations for the next two weeks, which happens to be wonderful timing.
Over the last few months I have been living here in New York, trying to find a job in web design and enjoying the fruits of the city (both literally and metaphorically). It has certainly been fun, but also a disappointment. I thought that I would have found a job by now, but it seems I am either under-qualified, over-qualified or not needed. Occasionally I am an odd combination of the three. It has made me question whether web design is a career I really wish to pursue. I am pasisonate about design but I don't know if I have the goods to have a productive career. I also don't know that I want to sit in front of a computer for the rest of my life.
The months following college have been ridiculously uneventful. They were actually a lot like college, except without the few hours of homework I would do a week. I'm officially bored now, but I just don't know what to do. Should I go back to school? If so, for what? Do I succumb to pressures and just go into "business?" Do I just say "fuck it all" and go be a ski bum for the next few months? I truly don't know.
I know my life plan doesn't have to be decided right now, but I need to have some semblance of a plan. All I have decided is that at some point I want to teach.
This is the part where I should have some insightful statement to end this entry, but the whole point is that I am totally confused. So I'm leaving it with an open ending. If you want to figure out my life for me, leave a comment.
Computer case mods can sometimes be amazing. This one is amazing. It is a computer and a coffee machine in one unit. Amazing.
Times Square 360#176;
A fullscreen 360° view of Times Square, thanks to quicktime's vr function. It is really nice. There are some other good shots on the site.
Yes, the post is what you'd expect. I don't know what to think about the concept, but I know I would hate Barbie if she were real. Oh, and it wouldn't hurt for her to eat something, anything. This is a rumor, but I heard she might have an eating disorder.
Annoy a Spammer
An article was written about a very popular spammer, then an anti-spam coalition signed him up for hundreds of marketing campaigns. Now he gets tons of mail at home and isn't happy. Well, I'm happy.
Is she a true porn star? I noticed her as an "Internet Striper" in the cast list for .Com for Murder. Anyway, look at her IMDB profile and then immediately forget who told you to look at it.
Posted December 4, 2002
I'm back, and I have been for a couple days. I'm going to be busy though. I'm taking the LSATs this Saturday and I'll likely be studying all week. I'm also going to The Daily Show today. I'll take my camera and hope to take a few photos. We'll see.
Thanksgiving = good.
Life = good.
Moving back to Chicago in a few weeks = possible.
I'll keep you posted on that last one.
Posted December 1, 2002
I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to post more about AIDS related issues today, but I was busy doing things at home. So I'll tell you an interesting tidbit that I learned way back in college. Ah, memories. (If I get anything wrong, I apologize. I am doing this from memory.)
While reading a book about the AIDS crisis in Africa and Asia, I was reminded that people may be fairly educated about the disease in the US, but other countries do not have this benefit. In Indonesia, it is very common for men to visit brothels while they are married. At these brothels, they rarely use condoms because the men don't like them and the prostitutes need to make money. Also, both groups are mostly uneducated. Even if they were educated, it is shunned upon to speak of sex in most South-Asian societies. It is meant to be something private. As a result, most of the prostitutes test HIV positive at some point in their career. This high percentage, means men are very likely to contract the disease.
Here comes the most upsetting part. These married men go home to their wives and expect to have an active sexual relationship with no questions asked. Even if a woman knows her husband is having sex with a prostitute and could very well be HIV+, she cannot even ask to use a condom because it would not be socially acceptable.
This is where the problem lies. We live in a country that talks about sexuality a lot and, for the most part, it is not a problem to get important information to citizens. Elsewhere, this is not the case. Cultural and religious customs are different in every country and can make it difficult to discuss and prevent AIDS. This means that although we are making progress here in the United States, it does not give us the right to relax. The disease affects millions, many of the innocent, and it is our obligation to help make a difference.
Posted December 1, 2002
Today, December 1st, is World AIDS day. I am participating in a group effort called Link & Think. I've committed to spending the whole day focusing on posts related to AIDS. Seeing as it is very late, I will skip the digging for interesting and pertinent facts, and go with a story.
The first time I ever really had a personal connection to AIDS was about 7-8 years ago. My mom and I had just gone to get our hair cut at the same stylist she had been using for as long as she's been in Chicago. Since they are also friends, and it was a saturday, he had accomodated us and agreed to cut our hair at his apartment. He had a friend hanging around being fairly unobtrusive. He was a very nice, thirty-somthing guy. I hadn't really thought much about meeting him.
When we left his place my mom explained to me that he had just been diagnosed with AIDS. I had been learning about the disease in school and felt like I could understand what went on, but after meeting someone who had AIDS, I realized the amazing and horrible power of the disease. I wondered what it would be like to know you would die in several years. I also wondered if I had touched him. Despite all I had learned about the disease and the ways it could be transmitted, I still was worried that I might have touched him. It was a wake-up call.
Today, I hope you take some time to think about the diesease, the millions it has effected and ways that you can make a difference. It's easy to forget about it and feel invincible, but we need to work to bring even more awareness to the disease. People assume they know everything there is to know, because it is such a widely known disease, but that is obviously not the case. Today, I hope to educate with the small bits I do know about the disease.
Link & Think.