Capn Design Mini Reviews
April 2002 Archives

Jenny Wins

APRIL 30, 2002

It is official. I've been one-upped by JP. Man, nice job.

Oh, and at the stroke of midnight this site will come down for my own relaunch.

Posted in Design at 11:34 pm.
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Family Bloggin

APRIL 30, 2002

My sister has a weblog. She just started it today. Ha ha, sweet. Excerpt from first entry.

This diary is not going to all...and if it does, it will be a good smell. ohhhhhhhhhh SNAP!! Bye kids ~jess~

Posted in My Life at 5:24 pm.
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APRIL 30, 2002

Big Mouth Billy Bass (the singing fish) is evil and we all know it.

This flash animation makes the truth funny. I laughed a lot.

Posted in Tidbits at 2:24 pm.
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Sim City 4.

APRIL 30, 2002

Sometime, probably in December, Maxis will be releasing Sim City 4. There is not a great deal of information out there, but it is supposedly going to look really purdy and have a whole bunch of new toys.

I have bought every installment of Sim City and I can say that about no other computer game. It is just a ton of fun and I will surely buy the new version. All I fear is that it will be released for OSX and I'll be forced to have it with me at all times. Oh man, Sim City 4 on the Terrace. Oh yes.

Official Page.

Posted in Video Games at 2:23 am.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

Friday Five.

APRIL 26, 2002

Friday Five.

1. What are your hobbies? Oh man, I have a ton. Recently though it's been playing on this computer -- both surfing and web design. Then photography, tv, movies and that's really it. I've been lazy lately and I hope to change that this summer.

2. Do you collect anything? If so, what? I definitely collect CDs and I'm building my movie collection. I used to collect baseball/basketball cards, golf towels, sporting events tickets, matchbooks. I still kinda collect matchbooks.

3. Is there a hobby you're interested in, but just don't have the time/money to do? I really want to do more rockclimbing and backpacking. Really.

4. Have you ever turned a hobby into a moneymaking opportunity? If you consider webdesign a hobby, then yes.

5. Besides web-related stuff (burbs, rings, etc.), what clubs do you belong to? None really. I was just telling Jena how I want to start a movie club (like a book club. get it?). I also really want to start a club called Wisco Photo Safari. I feel that's self-explanatory.

Posted in Tidbits at 12:52 pm.
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Miami. No, Ohio.

APRIL 26, 2002

I have made it safely to the land of Ohio. First thought: Cincinnati airport is the ugliest piece of architecture I have ever seen. I've documented the fact. Fortunately, the Miami of Ohio campus is amazing. It's easily the prettiest campus I've been to.

It's nice to take a break from Madison and home. I needed a mini-vacation. It's also great to be spending some time with one of my best friends, Jena.

Time to get back to surfing. My time's almost up.

Posted in My Life at 12:26 pm.
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I lied.

APRIL 25, 2002

I am posting again to quote from an email my professor sent me. I overslept for the third time in a row this morning and I emailed her to apologize and tell her I was having trouble sleeping. She replied by saying...

Maybe now that you are rich you don't need to come to class.

Brilliant. True.

Posted in My Life at 12:17 pm.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

No Posts, Big Paper.

APRIL 25, 2002

I'm finishing up this ridiculous paper, which is why I haven't posted. The no posting will likely continue this weekend as I travel to Ohio to visit my good friend Jena. Hopefully I'll be able to send some messages back to you.

For now, here is some news suggesting the Xbox is going down. Woo.

Posted in My Life at 10:49 am.
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Memory and Revelation

APRIL 23, 2002

I'll go in order and start with the memory.

Approximately two years ago I was director of the music committee and was subsequently in command of hiring coordinators and the like. Our open-mic host had decided to leave and we had to fill his position. So Sleeve, Ough, Runkle and I set out to make a choice. After a few morning interviews we were feeling goofy and decided to let it all hang out. That meant using baloons for breasts and conducting an interview. We had an initial fitting and took some photos (which have mysteriously disappeared) before our victim entered the room. It ended up being Nathan Rabin, from the Onion. Thankfully he's from the AV Club, otherwise we might have been subject to horrendous ridicule. Nathan just smiled, and we continued the interview with D-cups. It all went fine, but he didn't get the job. The moral of the story is that wearing balloons as breasts is always funny. Always.

My revelation is that I really want to be in Chicago next year. It would be very exciting to NYC or SF but there are just so many people and things I would miss if I moved elsewhere. I would lose the my family, the Cubs, seriously funny improv, the lake, the el, midwestern demeanor, hot dogs, LPTC and a host of other things. Yeah, other cities offer a lot but I don't care. I'm going to Chicago.

Posted in My Life at 11:56 pm.
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Joel Stein Supports Me

APRIL 23, 2002

I've been talking about TV Turn-Off week and how I think it sucks lately, and I've found a man who supports me. Joel Stein, from Time. He wrote a column in this week's issue about TV Turn-Off and has some choice quotes.

SATURDAY, DAY 1: I have already listened to every disk I own, including both Sun Ra records. Eventually it gets so bad that I go to a play. It's like watching a TV show from one camera angle. At 10 p.m. I stretch out with a book. By page 13, I am face down in my pillow, drooling, the book still in my extended hand. I conclude that reading uses such a huge part of the brain that it exhausts me immediately. Either that or it's boring as hell.


After a week, I'm not sure what the TV-Turnoff people are trying to prove. It's not like reading is so great. The Top 10 shows are better written than the best-selling books. Fighting the most popular storytelling medium is not only a losing battle and horribly snobbish but unsocial too. The Osbournes and Survivor bring us together and define us as a culture. Hey, better that than Nora Roberts.

note: Although reading can be boring as hell, that is not my personal point. You should cut out your frivolous tv, reading, internet, anything and save the good stuff. Point made, I hope.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 10:58 pm.
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Cloning the Dell Dude

APRIL 23, 2002

It's well accepted that television goes through an innovation-replication-saturation cycle. Everything that works well is often immediately copied because there's no need to reinvent the wheel and risk is a scary word in business. So as annoying as Steve the Dell Dude can be, he was bound to be replicated.

And replicated he was. I just saw a Taco Bell commercial that used the same premise. It was a slightly geeky buy mostly charming college kid hawking the product to a friend. Nothing amazing, but I just think it's interesting.

Has anyone else noticed similar commercials? Any Wendel the Wendy's Dude or Michael the McDonalds Man?

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 4:50 pm.
3 Comments, | permalink to article

S.M.E. pt. 2

APRIL 22, 2002

I found a list of the upcoming summer movies and here are the ones I will not miss (either b/c I'm excited or b/c they're too big to miss). Oh, and the summer season will begin in May and end in August.

Dueces Wild, Hollywood Ending, Spider-Man, ESPN's Ultimate X, Star Wars: Episode II, About a Boy, The Importance of Being Earnest, CQ, Insomnia, Enough, The Sum of All Fears, The Bourne Identity, Bad Company, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, Scooby-Doo, Windtalkers, Minority Report, The Crocodile Hunter: Collision Course, Mr. Deeds, Pumpkin, Men in Black II, Powerpuff Girls: The Movie, Gangs of New York, Like Mike, Reign of Fire, Road to Perdition, Eight Legged Freaks, Halloween: Resurrection, K-19: The Widowmaker, Tadpole, Austin Powers in Goldmember, The Country Bears, Full Frontal< Signs, XXX, The Good Girl, Spy Kids 2, Blood Work, Secretary, The Adventures of Pluto Nash, One Hour Photo, Master of Disguise, Simone, Serving Sara, A Guy Thing, Posessions, Jackass: The Movie.

Wow. That's a lot of movies. Maybe I can get some sponsorship or a discount from the theaters.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media, My Life at 8:52 pm.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

Yankee Foxtrot Hotel

APRIL 22, 2002

Tomorrow is the official and much anticipated release date of Wilco's Yankee Foxtrot Hotel. The story is long and, for once, well described by Pitchfork. I usually dislike their review style and opinions, but I'm with them for their Wilco review. Typically, they'll begin their reviews with an unnecessary (read: boring) intro and then spend a couple hundred words on the album. In this case, their format works because Yankee Foxtrot Hotel definitely has a story.

So if you know nothing about this album then go check out the review. Oh, and even if you have the album please go buy it this week. Major labels have to learn that singles don't always sell albums.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 7:10 pm.
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Microsoft is Annoying.

APRIL 22, 2002

As I'm trying to finish up the new design I noticed that I really need to download a few old browsers for testing as I make the move to CSS layout. IE 5, 5.5 and 6 all render CSS differently. I just went to Microsunk's website and found that I couldn't install any old broswers. It may be b/c I have Windows 2000, but I don't care. I attempt to design websites and I like to make sure they work in as many different scenarios as possible and they aren't making this easy.

This is exactly why Zeldman and his throngs of followers code for web standards. At a certain point it just becomes too difficult to try and program for 10+ environments. To hell with bad browsers.

Posted in Technology\Web at 3:37 pm.
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TV Turnoff

APRIL 22, 2002

It is officially tv turn off week. Rebel. Watch worthwhile television.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 9:59 am.
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APRIL 22, 2002

As I'd mentioned earlier, I decided to partake in a mix-trading project called Burn Baby Burn. I sent my CDs out a week ago and I wanted to wait at least this long before I posted the tracklist here. So, for those who are interested, here is the tracklist to my mix.

1. Paperwings : Damien Jurado and Gathered In Song
2. Our Time : Imperial Teen
3. Afraid Himself To Be : Jason Falkner
4. Here Comes My Baby : Cat Stevens
5. (Drawing) Rings Around The World : Super Furry Animals
6. Wipeout : Fat Boys
7. I Know You Want Me : Call And Response
8. Where's Summer B. ? : Ben Folds Five
9. Moving : Supergrass
10. Uniform Grey : Sarah Harmer
11. It Must Be Summer : Fountains Of Wayne
12. Sometimes : Ash
13. Hateful : The Clash
14. Walk : Blind Melon
15. I'm Looking Through You : The Beatles
16. Sleep My Friend : Joe, Marc's Brother
17. Ice Cube : Clem Snide
18. We Got To Be Good To Each Other : Ray Wonder
19. Unordinary : The Stereo
20. Acuff-Rose : Uncle Tupelo
21. Suffer Never : The Promise Ring
22. Pyramid Song : Radiohead Amnesiac

I think it's one of the best that I've ever made, I just hope that the recipients think the same.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media, My Life at 2:26 am.
2 Comments, | permalink to article

Summer Film Extravaganza.

APRIL 21, 2002

Today I made a decision while flipping through the latest EW: I am going to see every major film that is released this summer and write up reviews for each one. I know I'm going to see some drivel, but this is going to be an experience. Ideally, I'll see every movie on its opening weekend but I think that's a bit optimistic, so I'll shoot for the first week of release. Then I'll write up a review and post it to a new summer film page I plan to create.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to see every film that is released this summer, but I will do my darndest. I'll for sure see anything that's shown at a first-run, mainstream cinema and see as many indie and art films as possible. I'm going to slap a simple page together sometime in the next couple weeks with the movie schedule for the summer so I can check the movies off as I go along.

This event will be my second expenditure from my WoF windfall. It's going to be a good time.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media, My Life at 11:03 pm.
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Sports and Research.

APRIL 20, 2002

Up until now I have had a very masculine day. I ate and then watched basketball and the NFL Draft. The draft is interesting, but I would pay more attention if it moved quickly.

Now, I am going to the library to get some books for a research paper due next week. I want to do a pretty good job on this one since I did pretty mediocre on the first exam. So, off I go. Wish me luck.

Posted in My Life at 2:15 pm.
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Right on Stevie.

APRIL 20, 2002

Ya'll should go read Stevie's open letter to the music biz. She focuses on the industry's blame-placing tactics, which are completely misguided. Right on Stevie.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 10:04 am.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

Entertainment Convergence.

APRIL 20, 2002

Entertainment Convergence. I just saw the Max Payne commercial for the hundredth time and something hit me: videogames and movies are amidst a strong convergence. It's not the first time I've thought about this or anyone's thought about this, but the commercial was another indication of my growing belief.

The spot has the typical action shots of the movie but what was unique was all the intangibles. The voice-over was a typical movie voice. It was the same baritone man with a raspy voice saying phrases like, "Max Payne is a man without a conscious on a mission against evil. Follow his adventures as he uncovers the twisted plot of the street slime." The only difference between this and a movie ad is that they also threw in some of the technical features. Aside from the voice-over they focused on the narrative of the game more than usual. It was about Max Payne and his mission, not about the number of pixels or the variety of bad guys.

I have a belief that video games and movies will become one at some point in my lifetime. I don't mean to imply that there won't be your typical movies and your typical games, but there will be a new genre of narrative games entering arenas and theaters. You'll go in to watch professional players play the game and follow the story as they play. What makes this interesting is that everytime you go you may have a different experience since everyone has their own playing style, which is something studios will love because people are likely to go multiple times. After you've watched the game played for a few months it will be released six months after that, just as videos are, and the demand will be even higher because they'll be more time for people to build up excitement and anticipation.

I also think that we'll be watching regular games as well, but I won't go into it because this post is already long enough. Just keep track of how many movies are being made from videogames (Tomb Raider, Resident Evil, etc.) and how many videogames are focusing more on narrative and becoming increasingly cinematic (Grand Theft Auto, Resident Evil, Final Fantasy). Oh, and GTA3 is a great example because even though it is a blast to run around killing prostitutes and blowing up cars, creating a storyline keeps you playing and interested for a lot longer. So just keep paying attention.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media, Video Games at 1:30 am.
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I trimmed my money tree.

APRIL 20, 2002

I trimmed my money tree. What's the point of money if you can't spend it, eh? I lightened my Wheel of Fortune load on thursday by buying some Paradigm speakers I've been dying to get since I first heard them in August. I'd been saving up to get them and once I got my windfall it was tough to turn them down.

I know I shouldn't go wasting all my cash on lust objects, but I think part of the point of getting "free money" is spending it on stuff you couldn't/wouldn't have bought otherwise. How many times have you said "I would buy so many CDs if I had $1000 fall in my lap?" I've said it a lot. So I bought my speakers and I can't wait to listen to the best speakers I've ever, possibly will ever, own.

Posted in My Life at 1:01 am.
4 Comments, | permalink to article

New Design.

APRIL 19, 2002

New Design. If anyone is interested in reading this site using the new design, you can now. It is at capndesign/new.php. There is still some work done/functionality to be added, but I think it reads much more easily.

Caveat 1: you need to have a standards compliant browser.
Caveat 2: it's not rendering properly in IE5/Mac.

Posted in Site News at 3:43 pm.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

Should I worry?

APRIL 19, 2002

Should I worry? When you search for Virtual Kiddie Porn on google, my site comes up second. I feel like there are some disappointed, lonely, gross people coming to my site right now. Or some cool, investigative lawyers. Or maybe just gross, lonely, investigative lawyers. Either way, I'm amused.

Posted in Site News at 3:30 pm.
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Friday Five.

APRIL 19, 2002

Friday Five.

1. What's your favorite TV show and why? It's a toughy, but I'd have to say Six Feet Under. It's the only show I watch religiously. Law and Order as well as Tech TV in general get honorable mentions.

2. Who is your favorite television star? I don't really have a favorite star. I'm not generally a star-struck kind of guy. But since you asked, I really like the Russian Man on Six Feet Under. "Have some vodka."

3. What was your favorite TV show as a child? Everything. But, I never had cable so everything is less than most people. I really liked Bozo and I watched Transformers and GI Joe a good amount too.

4. What show do you think should have been cancelled by now? Fear Factor and any other "crazy stunt" shows.

5. What new show do you hope escapes the axe this season? I agree with Nelly about Ed, but I think it'll be alright. I hope Greg the Bunny and Andy Richter Controls the Universe make it on. My fingers are crossed.

Posted in Tidbits at 3:06 pm.
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School Blows.

APRIL 18, 2002

School Blows. I am "studying" right now for an exam I have in 25 minutes and it is just not going well. I know the cases, more or less, but I am lost when it comes to all of the "readings" and "lectures." Thankfully I'm good at multiple choice.

Although I've always been disinterested in homework and studying, right now I attribute it to my readiness to graduate. The routine of school has become tired and I need something new to spice things up. I've been doing homework and going to classes for the last 18 years and I'm ready to begin a job. Even if it's mundane, it's something different.

Posted in My Life at 1:06 pm.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

Virtual Kiddie Porn is legal.

APRIL 16, 2002

Virtual Porn is legal. Today the supreme court handed down a ruling stating it is legal to virtually simulate child pornography. The law that was reversed barred "sexually explicit material that 'appear(s) to be a minor' or that is advertised in a way that "conveys the impression" that a minor was involved in its creation." About two months ago my 1st Amendment professor brought up this issue and I thought that the idea of child pornography, virtual or real, was just plain wrong for fairly obvious reasons.

Then I thought about why it was wrong and realized that it's all about protecting the kids. If we're trying to protect the kids then what does it matter if there is a virtual depiction of the act? How does that hurt the children? The WIRED article suggestsit could promote interest in child pornography. I agree this is a valid concern but what about instances when art is involved? A Reuter's article claims the justices point to "Traffic" and "Romeo and Juliet" as instances when child porn is used but for artistic purposes.

For this reason, I wholeheartedly agree with the court. There are definitely concerns with allowing this material to be produced, but the original law was overbroad and was hampering artistic and political views. Also, this decision may save a few children from pedaphiles or people looking to make a dirty dollar.

Here's the official ruling from the court, if you speak legalese.

Posted in Culture\Politics\Law at 3:35 pm.
0 Comments, | permalink to article

Mobile Home.

APRIL 15, 2002

Mobile Home. In yesterday's NYT there was a section on home design. In the section there was an article called Mobile Home. It explains the loft apartment of Mike Latham and how all the furniture and some of the rooms are mobile.

This is what I've dreamt about for the last 10 years, since I saw a European home design magazine that showed a converted factory space that was built using the same principle. I really love the idea because it allows your living space to be so versatile. One day I'll be able to build my dream loft/house and it will be awesome. Totally.

Posted in Design at 8:43 pm.
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A HUGE Birthday Present.

APRIL 14, 2002

A HUGE Birthday Present. As most of you know, yesterday I was a contestant in Wheel of Fortune and today is my birthday. Well, I got a big birthday present. I'm not going to go through the whole process of taping today, which was one of the best experiences in my life, but I'll give you the highlights. Oh, and I'm going to let you know how I did since you'll find out in a month anyway.

I was there at 10am and spent the majority of the day getting advice and rehearsing for the actual show. All of the people were really nice and the staff was twice as nice. I was on the 5th show so I got to sit and watch everyone else play. I didn't go on until about 8:30pm and I was a little nervous by then, but more excited than anything. I got on stage and played the game, but I won't tell you the puzzle rundown b/c I have to keep some suspense. When it was all said and done, I won $15,950. All I could think was "Holy f@*#ing s#!t!" It was nuts. The last thing to note is that Vanna is pretty boring and Pat is a little weird.

All in all, it was crazy. Happy birthday to me!

Posted in My Life at 12:03 pm.
10 Comments, | permalink to article

The big day.

APRIL 13, 2002

The big day. The time has come. At 10am tomorrow I'll be at Navy Pier with nothing but a UW sweatshirt and a tube of chapstick. I'll give you all the rundown after the competion has finished.

Wish me luck.

Posted in My Life at 12:22 am.
2 Comments, | permalink to article

Photoshop 7

APRIL 12, 2002

Photoshop 7 I finally managed to get a copy of Photoshop 7 for my powerbook. Oh man it's sweet. Too bad I could only find the beta version, but it's better than nothing. Now I can actually use this computer for just about everything. Sweet.

Posted in Technology\Web at 12:44 pm.
0 Comments, | permalink to article

Friday Five.

APRIL 12, 2002

Friday Five.

1. What is your favorite restaurant and why? Right now, The Great Dane. They just have the best variety of food and the best atmosphere. Fun fun fun.

2. What fast food restaurant are you partial to?In-n-Out, Checkers, McDonalds, Subway.

3. What are your standards and rules for tipping? I'll tip 20% unless someone clearly does something wrong. By that I mean forgetting a meal, not bringing water ever or just being a shmo.

4. Do you usually order an appetizer and/or dessert? Not usually, but it depends on where I go to eat. If I'm at Monty's and I'm with nelly, then I'll get a big desert. I also like Nachos.

5. What do you usually order to drink at a restaurant? Lately I've just been doing water but if not it's a coke. During the summer, lemonades all around.

Posted in Tidbits at 12:54 am.
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Hailstorm Warning Ended.

APRIL 12, 2002

Hailstorm Warning Ended. Microsoft's project codenamed "Hailstorm," also known as My Services, has been cancelled. The service was intended to allow users to keep their contacts on the web in a central server. It turns out they couldn't find a major partner and they couldn't cover all the security holes. I found out in this NYT article.

I just love seeing Microsoft falter like this. As I slowly move away from the Windows Empire it pleases me to see them losing any ground. Too bad I use IE and Entourage more than any other programs. Arrggghh.

Posted in Technology\Web at 12:39 am.
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Worst Show Ever.

APRIL 11, 2002

Worst Show Ever. This saturday Phat Phunction, Mama Digdown's and Smokin' with Superman are all playing. TOGETHER.

I am so glad that I'll be out of town.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 10:34 pm.
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Click me!

APRIL 11, 2002

Click me! There is an article about me and my wheels of fortune in the Badger Herald.

Ha ha.

Posted in My Life at 9:17 am.
1 Comment, | permalink to article

G4 TV.

APRIL 10, 2002

G4 TV. There is a new television station called G4 that is all about video games and interactive entertainment (the internet). Man, I really want to get my hands on this channel. Too bad it's not going to be here in Madison anytime soon. Good thing I already sent Charter an email.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media, Video Games at 11:15 pm.
0 Comments, | permalink to article

Holy Wheel of Shit.

APRIL 9, 2002

Holy Wheel of Shit. Breathe. This Saturday I am going to be a contestant on Wheel of Fortune. I honestly never thought I would make it. I thought it would have been cool, but I never thought I'd make it.

I have to be there at 10am and will be there until 11pm. I cannot bring a cell phone. I cannot bring reading material. I really hope I can bring a camera. I still can't believe this.

I am going to be on Wheel of Fortune.

Posted in My Life at 4:51 pm.
7 Comments, | permalink to article

TV Turn-Off.

APRIL 9, 2002

TV Turn-Off. From April 22-28, the U.S will experience TV Turn-Off week, where we will be expected to turn off our televisions in an effort to experience life and stop contributing to "unhealthy lifestyles and obesity." Well, I have a problem with this idea.

The organization says that, "Turning off the television gives us a chance to think, read, create, and do. To connect with our families and engage in our communities. To turn off TV and turn on life." I'll start with their suggestion that reading is better than television. It is undeniable that many readers pick up books that require the intellectual curiousity of a swivel chair. John Grisham's many books may be entertaining, but there is no difference between the books and NYPD Blue. They are designed to distract you from everyday life, which people often need to be more productive. Television is no different from any medium in this respect, because although art is used to stimulate it is more often used to unwind from the rigors of work.

So their claim that eliminating television for a week will force you to think is a bit contrived and naive. If I only watch Freddie Prince Jr. movies or just look at Anne Geddes photographs or read The Enquiror my brain will slowly decay. But it's not about that.

If people change their perspective on entertainment, we will think and do more. There has to be a distinction between television for relaxation and for stimulation. A big problem is that most people are not trained to watch a movie or tv show with the same critical mindset as a book. We devote a period every day for four years in high school to learn how to read, which I think is somewhat outdated. Reading is not nearly as ubiquitous as it was 50 years ago. I don't think getting rid of English classes is an answer; instead we should also teach people to critically interpret all forms of art.

So don't jump on the bandwagon towards self-righteous tv bashing unless you've thought about what they're really saying. You should definitely cut down the amount of time you distract yourself, but don't get rid of it entirely. There's a reason there are mandated breaks at union jobs. People need a good romance novel or an episode of Friends every now and then if they want to be sane. I know I do.

Here is a link to an article from TV Barn that talks about this a bit too.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 11:53 am.
2 Comments, | permalink to article

The new WSJ.

APRIL 9, 2002

The new WSJ. Today the new design of the Wall Street Journal was unveiled. I am going to pick up a copy on my way to class to check it out. You should too missy and let me know what you think since you're my resident expert.

Here is a virtual tour if you don't want to drop a dollar. (Link via What Do I Know)

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 11:25 am.
0 Comments, | permalink to article

Googie-Doogie Fappa-Woogie.

APRIL 9, 2002

Googie-Doogie Fappa-Woogie. I finally finished reading this article on google in the NYT. It talks about Google's need for a better business model but I, of course, grabbed onto something a bit more trivial and also incredibly funny.

Google runs versions of its sites in a few languages that no one has spoken, like Bork Bork Bork, purported to be the tongue of the Swedish chef on "The Muppet Show."


Posted in Technology\Web at 12:31 am.
0 Comments, | permalink to article

One Step Closer.

APRIL 7, 2002

One Step Closer. Today I had my much anticipated Wheel of Fortune audition. Here's how it went down.

After getting a little lost, I arrived at the Palmer House at 10:50am, ten minutes early. The room was set up in a conference style and when everyone arrived there were 160 prospective players. According to the people in charge, this was out 3,000 and we were "chosen by the computer," whatever that means. So we all filled out a questionare that asked for all the vitals and then asked what makes us unique, what sports teams and players we like, our hobbies/awards/etc, and our favorite soaps. A somewhat random selection of questions, I think.

We started by simulating the game. We were basically all playing a computer game together. They called on everyone once and had us play the game with them spinning a mini-wheel. The first time around I missed the first letter and sat right down. "Crap," I thought. Luckily, they did a second round of names, probably of people who didn't get to say much and seemed at all palatable. I did better this time and finished off a puzzle, which meant I got a price. A Wheel of Fortune baseball cap. After we finished this, they handed out a quiz that had a bunch of puzzles that had to be finished, like the final round of the game. We had five minutes to finish them and I got a little more than half. I was happy enough because it was tough. Finally, after 1.5 hours, we took a break as they graded the quiz and picked the next round of people.

In 20 minutes they came back and they called out about 30 names, and I had moved on. I started to get excited. There were 4 kids from UW, out of about 10 to start, and I had pretty reasonable odds. The big cheeses went ahead and took polaroid headshots of all of us right before we played the game again, but it was a much closer simulation. At the end they explained that 15 people and 2 standbys would be called for college week, filming next weekend. Also, they are filming Chicago week the day before and we could make that too. If we made it, they will call on Tuesday.

So things are looking pretty up, but nothing is even close to set in stone. Supposedly there is another round of auditions today. I won't really care if I don't make it because today was an experience in its own right. Still, if I do I will give Sajack a bear hug and Vanna a big wet kiss. Mmm....R-S-T-L-N-E.

Posted in My Life at 4:40 pm.
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"Friday" Five.

APRIL 6, 2002

"Friday" Five.

1. What are the first things that you do in the morning to start your day? I get up (but that doesn't always happen, at least not in the morning), I shower usually, check my email. If I have time, I'll make a bowl of cereal.
2. What are the last things that you do at night before going to bed? Watch tv, brush my teeth, throw clothes in the hamper.
3. What daily routine have you recently added to your day? Well, there is nothing I have really added, but I just bought a new calendar. I got it in Japantown in SF and it was $3. I love the little thiing, even if I haven't had much of a chance to use it.
4. What routine do you wish you could get rid of? Oh man, I am on my computer WAY too much. I have to either cut out computer time or tv time or both. Stat.
5. What's the one thing that makes you feel like something is missing if you don't do it some point within your day? Checking the email and blogs. I just gotta.

Posted in Tidbits at 9:58 pm.
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Redesign underway.

APRIL 6, 2002

Redesign Underway. Things are looking good so far and I'm trying to use CSS for layout. So if you love my page and you haven't upgraded to IE6/Opera/NS6/any other standards compliant browser, you should do it now.

On that note, here's a little call for help. I'm trying to do a 3 column layout that is centered on the page and 750px wide, with columns of 400, 150, 150 (in that order). Does anyone know how to do this or what site might get me going? I'm going to send out an APB on the Movable Type boards as well. And thanks, if you're smarter than me.

Features of new site: more photos in a more prominent section, minireviews of albums and movies, a calendar feature of upcoming events (a nod to lifeuncommon for that one) and the usual blog. I'm 'cited.

Posted in Site News at 4:55 pm.
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$4 per Second.

APRIL 6, 2002

$4 per Second. If you go see the Broadway production of The Graduate, you will be paying $4 for each second that Kathleen Turner is stark naked, according to this NYT article.

The author of the article claims that there are very few reasons to see this production. The acting is so-so and it generally does an injustice to the film. The review bothers me because he starts off assuming that the 20 seconds of star-studded nudity is the only reason anyone is seeing the production. Granted there is a lot of hubbub, but it seemed he was calling those people shallow, when it reality that is the one interesting part of the play. Maybe he was playing the nudity up to point out how little the play offers, but it still struck me as condescending.

I would have rather seen The Produces anyway.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 3:15 am.
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Madison Happenings.

APRIL 5, 2002

Madison Happenings. Right now, in case you live under a rock, the Madison Film Festival is taking place throughout downtown Madison. There are a lot of great films right now and the website is a work of art in its own right.

Also, next Wednesday Neal Pollack will be reading at UBS. He wrote Anthology on American Literature and just recorded an album of the same name. He is funny. Go see him.

Posted in My Life at 5:01 pm.
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Driving "Rules."

APRIL 5, 2002

Driving "Rules." This evening nelly and I were driving out to Best Buy and I realized that I really wish that hitting someone with a car just gave them a really bad charley horse or maybe elbow bursitis.

See, people tend to think they are invincible when they jaywalk. Even if a car is coming, they will continue at the same pace for no particular reason. I can't understand why they don't fear the 1-2 ton vehicle hurling towards them at 40 mph. Maybe television has warped their understanding of reality. I think if I could hit them with my car and they flew 100 feet in the air and landed with a sprained ankle, I would consider hitting more pedestrians. So watch out because I watch just as much tv as those jaywalkers do.

Posted in Culture\Politics\Law, My Life at 2:00 am.
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I give in.

APRIL 4, 2002

I give in. I've been staying away from the blog so far this week for no particular reason, but I've decided to throw up my arms and say something even if it has no value, importance or entertainment.

I'm getting pumped about my Wheel of Fortune audition this weekend. I know Vanna and Suckjack won't be there, but it will still be interesting. I guess the way it works is I do a little interview so they can check out my personality and my amazing looks, then I do a five minute quiz to see if I can spell. I'm already counting the money.

On another note, the writer of Not Another Teen Movie came to my class the other day to talk about his ascent in the film industry. It was interesting only beause you got to hear how someone rises up in the industry. At the same time, it was fairly self-masturbatory. If you're interested in how it works, I'll tell you the whole story.

Cubs: 1-1. Projected Record: 81-81.

Posted in My Life at 10:37 am.
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APRIL 1, 2002

0-162. Today the Cubs lost their season opener 5-4 to Cincinnati. If they continue on this pace they'll be 0-162. I hope they won't. I don't blame them for losing because they don't want to get our hopes up right away. It's best they make us think they'll suck, and then come back so we won't be disappointed like last season.

Go Cubbies.

Posted in Sports at 10:44 pm.
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A new face.

APRIL 1, 2002

A new face. I've realized this site design is not very friendly to smaller monitors and I'm already getting a little sick of it. So, there will be some modifications made this week.

Also, I will actually have to create a portfolio and an updated resume if I want to try to get a job, so that will be up in a week also.

Posted in Site News at 12:25 pm.
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Business Decisions.

APRIL 1, 2002

Business Decisions. Today there is a message on Pitchfork's website explaining that they have had trouble paying the bills and are taking on a huge corporate sponsorship. This means less indie reviews and more Nickelback reviews.

This doesn't bother me terribly because I really only use Pitchfork as a news source. Their reviews are pretty shabby. The problem is the way they've explained it to us through a message on the front page. The language is very defensive. Maybe it's because he doesn't like the way he has to go or maybe it's because he's afraid to show his real skin--who knows. I just think it could have been done in a more graceful manner.

Also, who cares if there's a few business rock reviews mixed in with the indie stuff? I think it's nice. Now if they'd stop telling a story before every review I would probably start/keep reading them.

Posted in Music\TV\Film\Media at 12:21 pm.
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