Monday, December 31, 2007

"New Year's can suck it"

Or so said my friend in a text message. And I agree. I've never been a fan of this holiday. I was going to go to the celebration at Carytown, but that plan fell through (and I'm not too broken up about it since I'm still a bit under the weather). But I would like to take a second and pour some champagne on the ground for these things that I was into that "died" in 2007:
Au revoir, friends. Back to my glass of Bernheim, Superbad, and lack of a New Year's kiss.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Monday, December 24, 2007

My Christmas viewing marathon

Tonight sees the annual 24 hour marathon of A Christmas Story on TBS. Sure, it's great and, if you add up all of the bits and pieces that I catch, I end up watching the film about 3 times. But this year I've come up with my own TV and movie marathon. It'll require a combination of DVDs, DVR recordings, and torrented files, so it may be a little late for you to collect all of the quality programming, but feel free to try it next year.

  • A Christmas Story (8:00-9:30 pm) Of course, you've to start off with this classic.

  • Elf (9:30-11:00 pm) Then you segue into a modern classic. "I just like to smile. Smiling is my favorite."

  • "The Office" - "Christmas Party" (11:00-11:30 pm) About now, your attention span is waning, so this classic episode is in order.

  • "30 Rock" - "Ludachristmas" (11:30-12:00 am) "Merry Jewish!"

  • "Soundstage: Chris Isaak Christmas" (12:00-1:00 am) How about a little music?

  • Santa Claus Conquers the Martians ("Mystery Science Theater 3000" version) (1:00-3:00 am) Now that it's late, the nutiness can begin...with Dropo, the laziest man on Mars.

  • "Futurama" - "Xmas Story" (3:00-3:30 am) John Goodman voices the murderous SantaBot. 'Nuff said.

  • "Futurama" - "A Tale of Two Santas" (3:30-4:00 am) Same SantaBot, different voice.

  • "A Muppet Family Christmas" (4:00-5:00 am) At about this time of night/morning, the talking piles of felt are a bit surreal, huh? Watch out for that icey patch.

  • Die Hard (5:00-7:00 am) WAKE UP!

  • It's a Wonderful Life (7:00-10:00 am) Just because this is usually on when my family opens presents means you should watch it then, too.

  • National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (10:00-12:00 pm) The exploits of the Griswalds and their extended family makes for the perfect accompaniment to the post-present opening come-down.

  • "The Simpsons" - "Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire" (12:00-12:30 pm) Sure, the animation is crude and the voices are off, but this first ever episode of the series is sure to warm your cockles.

  • Trading Places (12:30-2:30 pm) "I had the most absurd nightmare. I was poor and no one liked me. I lost my job, I lost my house, Penelope hated me and it was all because of this terrible, awful Negro."

  • "King of the Hill" - "Pretty, Pretty Dresses" (2:30-3:00 pm) Any show that can provide huge laughs from a Christmas suicide watch is tops in my book.

  • About a Boy (3:00-5:00 pm) Rachel Weisz provides some much-needed eye candy for this marathon.

  • Millions (5:00-7:00 pm) This movie provides the minimum daily requirement of Heartwarming Holiday Quirk.

  • "South Park" - "Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo" (7:00-7:30 pm) Sometimes he's nutty, sometimes he's corny. He can be brown or greenish-brown.

  • "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (7:30-8:00 pm) There's no better way to follow up a show about singing poop AND learn the true meaning of the season than watching The Best Christmas Special Of All Time.

Feel free to substitute in any of the following, if you wish: Go, Scrooged, "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas"*, Trapped in Paradise, Love, Actually, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer", Edward Scissorhands, and the Festivus episode of "Seinfeld."

Please note that all run times are approximate, thus ample consideration for bathroom/snack breaks has been given.

*The original animated TV special, not the movie that betrayed the whole spirit of the book.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

It's a Festivus miracle!

Happy Festivus!

ding dong merrily on highTunes

This years's "A Very Micah Christmas" mix is finished and mailed out, but a couple of people on my "Nice List" have not yet received it. In order for those unlucky souls to enjoy these songs on Christmas, I figured that I'd put the whole album up online. So, without further ado, here is the tracklisting:

1. "Holiday Road" - Matt Pond PA
2. "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" - Aimee Mann
3. "Mr. Heatmiser" - Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
4. "Christmas Tree on Fire" - Holly Golightly
5. "A New Baby For Christmas" - George Jones
6. "Please, Daddy (Don't Get Drunk This Christmas)" - John Denver
7. "Little Donkey" - The Boy Least Likely To
8. "O Little Town of Bethlehem" - Nat King Cole
9. "Mele Kalikimaka" - Chris Isaak
10. "Jingle Bell Rock" - Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass
11. "Christmas Is Going to the Dogs" - Eels
12. "Christmas in Killarney" - Bing Crosby
13. "Fairytale of New York" - Stars
14. "This Christmas I Spend With You" - Robert Goulet
15. "Christmas Is All Around" - Billy Mack
16. "The Christmas Massacre of Charlie Brown" - DJ John
17. "Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town" - Eddy Arnold
18. "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" - Dean Martin
19. "Hibernation Day" - Jars of Clay
20. "Baby, It's Cold Outside" - Leon Redbone & Zooey Deschanel
21. "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?" - Mindy Smith
22. "The Christmas Waltz" - Frank Sinatra
23. "Wonderful Christmastime" - Tom McRae
24. "Silent Night" - Sinead O'Connor
25. "Auld Lang Syne (December 24th)" - C.W. Morris
26. "Christmas Commercial" - John Baker

You can download them all in one compressed file here.

Keep in mind that the mp3 and AAC files are not tagged to play in the correct order (or even grouped in the same "album"), so you'll have to arrange them yourself if you burn them to disc or put them in a playlist.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Brrring! Brrrring! Hello, Cheese? No. Cheese can't dial a phone.

This morning I bought tickets for what is sure to be the Best Show of 2008: Michael Ian Black & Michael Showalter at Toad's Place. I've been a longtime fan of the State and think that "Stella" was one of the funniest TV shows ever. This should be one fun evening.

"Touche. You've made worm's meat of me."

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

...and a wookie in a pear tree.

This is two years old, but I just discovered it tonight. And it sure beats jingle dogs/cats.

Bonus Crush of the Week: Mary Elizabeth Ellis

This week's Bonus Crush is actress Mary Elizabeth Ellis, who plays the waitress on "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia." In real life she is married to Charlie from that show and, should Amy Poehler and Will Arnett suddenly meet horrible deaths, they will become out nation's preeminent Comedy Power Couple.

This week's regular Crush has caused a minor stir, so I figured that a palette cleansing was in order.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Crush of the Week: Rebecca Gayheart

This week's Crush is actress Rebecca Gayheart, a fixation of mine since the early 90s. I saw her on some entertainment news show tonight, but I was at the gym and the sound was down, so I have no clue what she was promoting.

Women in just sports jerseys? Yep, another thing of mine.

I haven't really followed her career, but she'll always be the Noxema Girl to me.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

It's got electrolytes.

Well, we're one step closer to Idiocracy, folks. Brawndo - the sports drink that replaced water in that film - is now a real product available for purchase. It might be fun to try once, but the price is kind of steep for a novelty beverage ($39.95/case). But if you're itchin' to find out what it's like, the good folks at the Onion A.V. Club have got your answer.

If this product fails, there's always PowerThrist.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

30 Rock tumbler

Tonight's episode of "30 Rock": "Ludachristmas"

It's holiday time and the staff of "TGS with Tracy Jordan" is having their annual "Luda Christmas" party - complete with music, merriment, "The Human Table" and a Horny Santa. Unfortunately, Tracy can't participate due to his newly court mandated alcohol monitoring bracelet. Since holidays mean special family time, Liz's parents, Dick and Margaret Lemon, and her 40-year-old brother Mitch, who suffers from memory loss due to a skiing accident and thinks he is 17-year-old high school senior, come to gloat over their "beautiful genius" daughter. Jack's jaded mother, Colleen, even shows up unexpectedly from Florida. The Lemons and the Donaghy’s go to dinner together, where Colleen spends the night trying to break the eternal optimism of the Lemon family. Meanwhile, in the spirit of Christmas cheer, Kenneth decides to teach the writing staff a lesson on gratitude by inviting a priest to the party.

This may be it for the season, folks.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Quick movie reviews

Fred Claus: A passable holiday movie, but nowhere near a modern classic like Elf. It was actually kind of weird seeing Vince Vaughn doing his Vince Vaughn thing, only toned down for the kiddies. Highlight of the movie: Elizabeth Banks in a sexy Santa outfit.

Hitman: More like Shitman. Okay, that was too easy. I got a free ticket to this with my Live Free or Die Hard DVD. Let's just say that I'm glad that I didn't pay for it. If they must make movies based on video games, why not adapt "Katamari Damacy"? That'd be wicked awesome.

Knocked Up: Worthy of the hype.

Transformers: Michael Bay raped my childhood. A movie about giant robots beating the snot out of each other could have been cool in the hands of a different director. Maybe one that lingered on a shot for more than five seconds or cared about the terrible dialogue in the script. And I didn't buy Megan Fox as a teenager.

Blades of Glory: I don't remember much about this one except that I laughed, but not as much as I usually do at Will Ferrell movies. That and Jenna Fischer is fine.

Grindhouse: Planet Terror/Death Proof: I really regret not seeing this in the theaters, with all of the fake trailers and whatnot. Initially, I thought that the whole machine-gun-for-a-leg thing was extremely stupid (actually, I still do), but Planet Terror was fast-paced, splattery and over the top...and I loved it. As for Death Proof, a line from Billy Madison sums up my feelings: "Talky, talky. No more talky." I wanted practically every long-winded character in this movie to die. Kurt Russell was great in it, though.

Thr3e: Like a made-for-TV Se7en. Avoid.

Year of the Dog: Cute flick. And Molly Shannon was actually tolerable in this, although I did want to slap her character silly. Two of my favorite actors - John C. Reilly and Peter Sarsgaard - gave fine performances.

Wild Hogs: As bad as you think it is.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Jingle jangle

Tonight sees the official release of my annual holly jolly mix - A Very Micah Christmas. This year's CD is chock full of aural ear candy from the likes of Dean Martin, Robert Goulet, Aimee Mann, and Stars, among many others. It is sure to instill a healthy Yuletide spirit in even the most cold-hearted Grinch.

If you're in the Richmond area, join me at the Corner Cafe for the official CD release party at 6:30 pm (it's early, but I gots to get home before "Dexter" starts). That's actually just a fancy way of saying that the album will be played in the bar while we eat and drink. There won't be any specials or freebies, but I may have an extra CD or two to give out. Just ask nicely (even if you are on the Naughty List).

Jonesin' for even more Christmas music? Then I recommend these music blogs: FaLaLaLaLa and Twelve Months of Christmas (the latter has a Christmas song by KITT!). And if you're feeling adventurous, check out the three volumes of Santastic - free downloadable Christmas mash-up albums compiled by dj BC - here, here, and here.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

30 Rock tumbler

Tonight's episode of "30 Rock": "Secrets and Lies"

C.C. wants to go public with her relationship with Jack, but Jack is still very reluctant. Meanwhile, Liz continues to appease both Tracy and Jenna as stars of "TGS with Tracy Jordan." To pacify Tracy, Liz fakes a satellite transmission to accept an award from the Pacific Rim Emmys, and it infuriates Jenna. She goes "diva" on Liz by being late to rehearsals and hiring two personal assistants. Liz quells Jenna's temper by pulling a few tricks to make her feel special as well.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Happy Repeal Day!

"To alcohol! The cause of - and solution to - all of life's problems." - Homer Simpson

I would just like to wish everyone a very wet and wild Repeal Day. Unfortunately, I will be celebrating only in spirit (har har!), as I am on a strict, self-imposed restriction of alcohol and carbohydrates. Thankfully, it'll be only about a week and a half before I can have some sweet, sweet booze.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The post is made out of clay.

Here's a little Hanukkah Harry to kick off your Festival of Lights. I wanted to do a taste test of Jones Soda Company's Chanukah Pack, similar to what I did with their 2005 Holiday Pack, but none of the four Targets that I went to carried it*. Maybe it'll be on sale at Jones' site in a week and I'll just buy it then**. Anyway, to all the folks kickin' it old school, Happy Chanukah!

I'm not terribly familiar with "lol cats", but this shirt is pretty funny.

*Note to self: move to a town with more synagogues and temples.
**Good thing I'm not Jewish or I'd be a walking stereotype.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Then one foggy Christmas Eve Santa came to say, "C'mon!"

So far, my favorite Christmas ad of 2007 is this one from the Gap. Why? Because it features comedy power couple Will Arnett and Amy Poehler. In comfy sweaters. Looking goofy. If you have to go for an ad that doesn't use sex appeal (although this one clearly does since Poehler's in it...yummy), you might as well put Gob Bluth in it.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

30 Rock tumbler

Tonight's episode of "30 Rock": "Cougars"

Jack takes a special interest in an inner-city Little League team from the worst neighborhood in New York; a new, young employee asks Liz to a gallery opening.


Note: During the absence of "The Office" I have decided to do a regular weekly post for the second best comedy on the air (for the time being).

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I never thought it was such a bad little tree.

Maybe it just needs a little love.

When it comes to my cube at work, I'm like Ryan from "The Office" when he was a temp: I can clear my things out on a moment's notice*. It seems that literally all of my co-workers are involved in a cubicle decorating contest. Today two of them asked me if I wouldn't mind if they strung some tinsel around my cube so it would be flush with the others and I agreed. I don't want to go all out, but I don't want to be the office Grinch, either, so I bought something tonight: the Charlie Brown Christmas tree and a baby blue security blanket to give it a little love. I'm not gunning for the decorating prize (Christmas is too commercial!), but I don't mind jazzing my workspace up a bit.

On a somewhat related note, although my buddy Chad and I exchange combined birthday/Christmas gifts later on in December, he gave me one early: this super cool Linus ornament. Press its button and he recites the Christmas story while a light shines on him. I think it's a bit heavy for my new tree, though.

*Personal items in my cube: 2008 "The Office" wall calendar, Squishee cup, a couple of issues of "Entertainment Weekly", a pack of gum, and the Emo Emu picture. That is all.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Good news, everyone

It's been over four years, but "Futurama" is back! Today sees the release of the show's first straight-to-DVD movie Bender's Big Score (to be followed later by The Beast with a Billion Backs, Bender's Game, and The Wild Green Yonder). These movies will then be chopped up and aired as "new" episodes on Comedy Central sometime in 2008.

For now I'm just happy that it's back and that the DVD includes a full-length episode of "Everybody Loves Hypnotoad." I'm walking on sunshine!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Crush of the Week: Mary Elizabeth Winstead

This week's Crush is actress Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who is in a couple of recent-to-DVD movies: Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof and the super kick-ass Live Free or Die Hard.

Santa Baby...

In the former, she was one of the only female leads who I did not want to see dead and in the latter she's John McClane's daughter. 'Nuff said. She's also been in a couple of other fun flicks, like Final Destination 3 and the underrated Sky High.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Ask Professor Micah

It's been a while since I've run this feature, so why not do it again?

You know the drill: Go ahead. Ask me anything. I'll try to answer honestly and to the best of my knowledge*. My personal happenings/history, relationship advice, grooming tips, financial help, sports predictions, entertainment recommendations, Illuminati conspiracies - anything is fair game.

Just ask your questions in the comment section and I'll respond in kind. I'll keep answering in this post as long as it remains on the front page of the blog.

*No Googling.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Requiem for an anal retentive shopkeep

R.I.P. Dick "Mr. Whipple" Wilson, 1916-2007.

Hopefully, there's no one rudely mishandling personal hygiene products where you are now.

Friday, November 16, 2007

How I will be weathering the writers strike

The Writers Guild of America strike is winding up its second week and some of my favorite TV shows have run out of new episodes ("The Office"), others only have a handful left ("Heroes", "30 Rock"), and some have been shelved entiriely ("24"). So, as the airwaves get clogged with reruns and - *shudder* - reality shows, here is how I will occupy those precious hours:

  • College football and basketball. This is a great time of the year for sports.

  • Go through my ever-growing stack of unwatched DVDs. Seriously, there are lots.

  • Delve into the bonus features of my DVDs.

  • Listen to my archive of unevaluated albums. So much music, so little time...until now.

  • Read more books. On deck: tomes from the Onion and Kevin Murphy (of MST3K).

  • Scotch, scotch, scotch. I love scotch.

  • Go through my collection of half-finished and unplayed video games. Lego Star Wars, I'm looking at you.

  • Smoke more pipes. That Vermont maple cavendish is calling me.

  • Wade through my endless stack of magazines that piles up each week.

  • Get into new shows via On Demand ("Mad Men") or my backlog of downloads ("Pushing Daisies").

  • Browse the new features and archives of some of my favorite e-zines (like the Onion, its A.V. Club, Stylus, and PopMatters)

  • Plunge deeper into the job search.

  • Program my own network though the miracle of home video technology. All "Arrested Development" and "Futurama", all the time.

  • Comb the "Daily Show" archives for bits when the show was funny.

  • Blog more. You know you want it.

  • Read your blog. You know you want me to.

  • Finish watching "Derek & Simon" and get hooked on other internet shows.

  • Learn to cook some new dishes.

  • Hit the gym. Gawk at hotties at said gym.

  • Watch some Rifftrax, as everyone should.

  • Facebook zombie fights.

  • Sleep. Lots and lots of sleep.

Yeah, I think I can wait it out.

Bye Bye, Bonds

From the "No duh" file, Barry Bonds has been indicted on perjury charges regarding his "alleged"* steroid use.

Related Onion story: "Barry Bonds Took Steroids, Reports Everyone Who Has Ever Watched Baseball"

Well, duh.

*Yeah, right. (Hey, look! It's an asterisk!)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "The Deposition"

Michael faces a dilemma when Jan decides to sue Dunder Mifflin and he is deposed as a witness.

Due to the WGA strike, this may be the season finale.

MW Bonus "30 Rock" Synopsis: "Somebody to Love"

Jack falls for his complete opposite, a Democratic congresswoman from Vermont.


Sunny day

Tonight's season finale of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia": "The Gang Dances Their Asses Off"

Charlie inadvertently puts Paddy's up as the grand prize in a dance marathon. The gang must then win the competition to keep the bar.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Bonus Crush of the Week: Kaitlin Olson

This week's Bonus Crush is actress Kaitlin Olson, probably best known for playing Sweet Dee on "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" (or Larry David's sister-in-law on "Curb Your Enthusiasm").

She is what George Costanza would call a "two-face" (unlike that "Seinfeld" episode, though, Olson ranges from "cute" to "plain", not "ugly"), but I think that she looks good in this picture.

Fun fact: she is six days older than me.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Crush of the Week: Elizabeth Banks

This week's Crush is actress Elizabeth Banks. Looking at her filmography, she's been in a bunch of my favorites: Wet Hot American Summer, the Spider-Man movies, "Stella", The 40 Year Old Virgin, Catch Me If You Can, and "Scrubs". Yes, she does comedy well.

Fun facts: she converted to Judaism for her husband and graduated from Penn State.

Bonus pic:

Her appearence in Fred Claus brought to light a new fetish of mine: women in sexy Santa outfits. Ho, ho, ho, indeed.

My kid could paint that

My niece drew my portrait* the other day. It's so photorealistic that it's scary.

*Bunch of lines under my "nose" = my beard

Monday, November 12, 2007

Pop quiz, hotshot

Over the weekend I took Rolling Stone's Almost Impossible Rock & Roll Quiz and, yes, as the title implies, I could see it being extremely difficult for the layman. But I am not such a person. See, I'm the kind of guy that highlights selections of the Rock Snob's Dictionary while listening to my Belgian import flexi disc of Big Star's Radio City. That said, I found it kind of tough and got a score of 42. Beat that, chumps.

Micah World Top 25

Here they are, the top 25 songs burning up my iPod (as of 11.12.07):

1. "Lights On" - The Pierces
2. "Everysong" - Lloyd Cole
3. "I Knew You Before" - Dustin Kensrue
4. "Love You" - Jack Ingram
5. "A Postcard to Nina" - Jens Lekman
6. "Grace Kelly" - Mika
7. "Gospel" - The National
8. "Hope For Us All" - Nick Lowe
9. "Song Without a Chorus" - Butch Walker
10. "For the Girl" - The Fratellis
11. "Paris 2004" - Peter Bjorn and John
12. "Hey Eugene" - Pink Martini
13. "Paul Shapes" - The Pipettes
14. "St. Augustine" - Band of Horses
15. "You Picked Me" - A Fine Frenzy
16. "Flathead" - The Fratellis
17. "Nothing Better" - The Postal Service
18. "P Control" - Prince
19. "Meet Me at the Fair" - The Push Stars
20. "Kiss Me" - Sixpence None the Richer
21. "Elephant Stone" - The Stone Roses
22. "Summer's Gone" - Aberfeldy
23. "Sad Bomber" - Asylum Street Spankers
24. "Parentheses" - The Blow
25. "Fists Up" - The Blow

Lots of changes since the last chart. Expect to see copious amounts of Christmas music on the next one.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Please wish for these celebs to spectacularly flame out (or die) within the next three weeks

So, I joined blog buddy panthergirl's league in this fantasy celebrity game, which started yesterday. Here is my roster (and their current point totals):

The mere fact that I didn't get Britney in the draft means that I have an uphill battle ahead of me.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "Survivor Man"

After Ryan excludes Michael from a corporate wilderness retreat, Michael heads into the woods for his own survival adventure with nothing but the suit on his back. Back at work, Jim tries to revolutionize the office birthday party.

Due to the WGA strike, this is the second to last new episode for the time being. Per Jenna Fischer's MySpace blog:

By now you may have heard that The Office has shut down production. This is true. They cleaned out my trailer and just delivered me 3 boxes of my stuff. It is pretty surreal. We cannot produce new episodes of The Office until the Writer's Guild strike is over.


Oh...there are only 2 unaired original episodes of The Office left. And, I'm sad to say the one we were getting ready to shoot was going to be the funniest of the year. I'm sure of it. They've been pitching this particular story idea for over 2 involves Pam and Jim being in Michael's home but that's all I'll say. I hope we get to shoot it soon. Let's all stay strong and hope that the strike can end soon.

MW Bonus "30 Rock" Synopsis: With GE 'going green,' Jack must come up with an idea for a green mascot -- a Phillies-esque looking character named Greenzo. But when Greenzo's preaching becomes overly obnoxious at The Girlie Show, Liz gets fed up with the whole idea. Meanwhile, Kenneth plans his annual party, where Liz is the only one to ever show up, and Tracy spreads rumors to hype-up Kenneth's party but they soon get out of hand.


Sunny day

Tonight's episode of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia": "Bums: Making a Mess All Over the City"

To rid their neighborhood of undesirables, Mac and Dee become vigilantes, and Frank and Dennis impersonate police officers. They enjoy the feeling of power this gives them...perhaps too much.


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Who are the ad wizards who came up with these?

Yeah, posting YouTube clips just screams "SHAMELESS FILLER!" And it is. But here are a couple of terrible commercials currently in rotation around these parts:

A Step in Time chimney cleaners - Chim Chim Cher-ee! Pure fromage.

Auto Connection car dealers - If you can believe it, I've only seen this played during daytime TV. Shocking, I know.

Monday, November 05, 2007

The goose is getting fat

So this weekend I broke out the Christmas music - mainly the album put out by Barenaked Ladies a few years ago - and also started downloading some holiday tunes. A little early, you say? Actually, I'm a week or so later than usual. See, some of us compile a Christmas CD each year and that takes time. You want one, punk? Huh? Well, then, quit your bitchin'. Happy Holidays!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Thank you, Radiohead!

Now, I'm not really much of a Radiohead fan, but I really admire their acknowledging that the music industry just doesn't get it and having the fans set their own pricing for the band's new album. Whether or not this is just a passing gimmick or the new standard, the Radiohead influence is spreading:

  • Spoken word artist/poet/MC (?) Saul Williams is letting listeners name their own prices for his new album The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust. Normally, I wouldn't give this release much of a thought, but Trent Reznor produced it and, judging by the quick samples that I've heard, his fingerprints are all over it. Too bad an instrumental version wasn't released.

  • Paste magazine is letting people judge what they pay for a one year subscription (there is a $1 minimum). I had a free subscription to some magazine affiliated with Tower Records a year or so ago, but that mag folded and a few issues of Paste were sent to me for the remainder of the sub. It's pretty good and every issue comes with a compilation CD (and sometimes a DVD). I figured that was worth $3, so they got my money.

So, thank you, Radiohead. This new pricing model is the best thing you've produced since "Creep" (or maybe "Karma Police").

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Requiem for Sir Lancelot

R.I.P. Robert Goulet, 1933-2007.

"Vera said that?"

Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "Branch Wars"

When Karen tries to woo Stanley away from Scranton, Michael fights back.

Also, news came out that NBC is developing a spin-off of "The Office".


Sunny day

Tonight's episode of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia": "The Gang Gets Whacked"

In an hour long episode a misunderstanding with the mob over a set of speakers and a stash of cocaine prompts Dennis to hire himself out as a male escort. It's that, or he and the rest of the gang will get whacked.


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

RE: Your Brains

A fan vid that uses Shaun of the Dead clips

How about a little Halloween music? This song - Jonathan Coulton's "RE: Your Brains" - is about a year old, but I just discovered it over the weekend. And it cracks me up. It's sung from the perspective of a zombie who is negotiating with a former co-worker regarding the eating of his brain. It's catchy. It's funny. It's about zombies. It has it all.

"I'm not a monster, Tom
Well, technically I am"

You can download it for free here.


Looking for some stuff to kill some time today? Here are some good Halloween reads:
Happy haunted reading!

*Credit due: spydrz

Why I love Halloween Part III

Time for the obligatory post about the appreciation of women to dressing up like prostitutes.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

For no mere mortal can resist the evil of the Thriller. Not even Bollywood.

Michael Jackson + curry - Vincent Price = Indian "Thriller"*

Or you can watch some inmates dance to the original.

*Credit due: Relevant magazine podcast

Crush of the Week: Marisha Pessl

This week's Crush is author Marisha Pessl. I haven't read any of her work, but she is definitely "Book Hot".

Books are cool!

I've been spending a lot of time catching up at The Onion's AV Club. In my browsing, I came across this feature where she talks about random songs off of her iPod. And I was smitten.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

My weekend in 50 words or less

Evening pipe. Coffee. Spiders win. Buckeyes win. Highland games. "Scotland the Brave". Large men throwing things. Scotch egg. Meat pie. Supermac. Dogs. Pork shoulder. Plantains. World Series. Night of the Living Dead. Zombie song. More coffee. Facebook. Gym. Toasted cheese sandwich.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Repost: The Quintessential Autumn Album (at least to me)

Well, it is a (relatively) cold, dark, and wet day, which makes me very happy. Why? Because, over three weeks into October, it finally feels like fall. So I broke out this album and listened to it in its entirety today. I figured that I'd repost this for the newer MW readers who haven't meticulously combed the archives (and why haven't you, by the way?).

Feel free to post what you believe to be the Perfect Autumn Album and why that is.

As we enter autumn, there's one album that perfectly embodies the season (at least to me): Elvis Costello's 2003 jazzy classical (or classically jazz) North. From the laid back string and piano-laden music and lyrical imagery ("I trampled through the amber and the burnished gold") to the album artwork and leaf-strewn videos on the bonus DVD, it just feels like fall. It is a song cycle that chronicles the falling apart of his marriage and then his finding a new love (Diana Krall). The immediate pop hooks of Costello's previous work aren't here, but it is a rewarding listen nonetheless (other reviews and articles).

Included on the album is possibly my favorite Elvis Costello song - "Still":

These few lines I'll devote
To a marvelous girl covered up in my coat
Pull it up to your chin
I'll hold you until the day will begin

Lying in the shadows this new flame will cast
Upon everything we carry from the past
You were made of every love and each regret
Up until the day we met
There are no words that I'm afraid to hear
Unless they are "Goodbye, my dear"

I was moving very fast but in one place
Now you speak my name and set my pulse to race
Sometimes words may tumble out but can't eclipse
The feeling when you press your fingers to my lips

I want to kiss you in a rush
And whisper things to make you blush
And you say, "Darling, hush, hush
Still, still"

So buy it, download it, or get it from the library. Then put on some coffee, bundle up, and give it a listen.

(Hooray for me: I just found - through illegitmate means - the import-only bonus tracks "North," "Impatience," and "Too Blue")

Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "Local Ad"

The Scranton branch is asked to participate in an ad campaign which jump starts Michael's creativity.

MW Bonus "30 Rock" Synopsis: "Rosemary's Baby"

Liz hires her idol as a guest writer only to face dire consequences.


Sunny day

Tonight's episode of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia": "Dennis Looks Like a Registered Sex Offender"

Dennis is mistaken for a recently released child molester, but is more upset that the guy is overweight than that he's a sex offender. Meanwhile, Mac tries to bond with his ex-con father, who can't take his eyes off a creeped-out Dee.


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Crush of the Week: Rose McGowan

This week's Crush is actress Rose McGowan. I just watched the Grindhouse movies and, though I still think the machine gun leg is pretty dumb, she was smokin'...

...but not worth divorcing your wife of sixteen years who sired your five kids.

Plus, she's been tainted by Marilyn Manson. *shudder*

Monday, October 22, 2007

It's a...hoodie!

Target is having a great sale on hoodies this week ($8.66!), so I thought I'd buy yet another one. I shall name it...Black Dog*. I just hope my others - Graybeard, Blueball, Spiderboy, the Professor, and Greenhorn - don't get jealous.

Man, now I really can't wait until it gets colder. Too bad it's only late October. *sigh*

*I'm in a Zeppelin kind of mood.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "Money"

As Jan renovates his condo, Michael confronts his growing debt by asking his employees for a loan.

MW Bonus "30 Rock" Synopsis: "The Collection"

Jack hires a private investigator to prevent GE from digging up any dirt on him. Steve Buscemi guest stars.


Crushes of the Week: The Pipettes

This week's Crushes are RiotBecki, Gwenno, and Rosay, collectively known as the neo-girl group The Pipettes. Surprisingly, the one with the glasses is not my favorite.

Their debut album has finally gotten a Stateside release, with a couple of bonus tracks and remixed sound. Do pick it up. Or steal it.

Sunny day

Tonight's episode of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia": "Mac Is a Serial Killer"

Mac has been acting strangely, leading Frank, Dennis and Dee to believe that he's the serial killer who has been terrorizing Philadelphia. So they set out to catch him, but for Dennis and Dee, that means they must first learn to think like serial killers themselves. Frank, meanwhile, is content to let a chainsaw do his thinking for him.


Monday, October 15, 2007

Meet me at the fair*: a photo essay

Here are some pics from this year's Virginia State Fair. The snarky comments pretty much write themselves. Feel free to contribute your own.

*The post title is from an obscure song and obscure album by an obscure band. Do check them out.