Friday, May 30, 2008

My Spring Muxtape 2008

For about 4 years now I've been making seasonal mix CDs for select friends and family. A few weeks ago I discovered Muxtape and figured that it was about time I open the mixes up for the world at large.

So, here is Micah's Spring Mix 2008 (just in time for summer!):

1. "California Girls" - The Magnetic Fields
2. "Time to Pretend" - MGMT
3. "Dream Girls" - Neon Neon
4. "Daughter in the House of Fools" - Enon
5. "Heaven" - Club 8
6. "Open Doors" - Josh Ritter
7. "(Nothing But) Flowers" - Talking Heads
8. "The Taste of Red" - Butch Walker
9. "Chips" - The Saw Doctors
10. "Float On" - Ben Lee
11. "How Deep Is Your Love" - The Bird and the Bee
12. "I Wasn't Really Drunk" - Eef Barzelay

Unfortunately, Muxtape caps the number of songs at 12, so not all of the songs I put on the CD made the cut. You'll have to find the rest elsewhere:

"Say Goodbye" - Samuel
"Once Again" - Steve Poltz
"I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)" - Orson
"Torn on the Platform" - Jack Penate
"Academia" - Sia
"Drinking With You" - Jonathan Coulton
"Black Hole" - She & Him
"If You Were a Sailboat" - Katie Melua

Note: I do not want this Muxtape to be blue, but every time I try changing its color I get an error and cries of help (read: an e-mail to Muxtape) remains unanswered. Just imagine it is yellow.

So, do you have any Muxtapes to share?

Requiem for Hedley Lamarr (or is it Count de Monet?)

R.I.P. Harvey Korman, 1927-2008.

Hopefully, they're getting your name right where you are now.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Crush of the Week: Amy Ciupak Lalonde

This week's Crush is actress/Canuck Amy Ciupak Lalonde. I saw her recently in the latest Romero zombie flick, Diary of the Dead. And that's the only thing I've ever seen her in.

Yeah, the movie was pretty bad. And her fake Texan accent...not good. But she's a cute enough distraction from the shaky cam, bad dialogue, and overbearing constant reinforcement of the "message" of the movie.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Things are going to start happening to me now (part II)

Well, I was (kinda, sorta) featured in another podcast, this time for the one put out by Relevant magazine. Okay, I wasn't actually on it, but I did have a question answered. Every week they throw out a question to the their listeners and read some of the responses the following week. This time, though, they turned the tables and invited questions to be submitted to them. My question was something I had always wondered about the magazine industry (namely, why it takes so long to receive your first issue after you subscribe).

Ask a boring question, get a boring answer. But now I know. You can download the podcast here. It's the 5.23.08 edition and my question comes in towards the end, about 1:17:22 into it.

It was kind of funny that they couldn't determine my gender from my e-mail, so I was referred to as "Southern Micah." At least they pronounced my name correctly. Thanks, guys.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Pedometers at dawn!

Over the past couple of months I have fallen out of my regular gym routine and have been feeling pretty bad about it. I've packed on more el-beez than I'd like because of my neglect. But this week I will get back into the swing of things. Blog buddy, fellow Neil Diamondphile, and unfortunate Michigan fan srah has thrown down the gauntlet: a month-long competition to see who can get the highest average stepcount. The loser must publicly concede via a Blog Post of Shame.

14 days of walking for jmblya at Walker Tracker - a step tracker for pedometer enthusiasts

<br /><a href="" title="A walking community for pedometer geeks">View jmblya's Step Blog at Walker Tracker</a>

This competition started yesterday, with me in the lead. But I only walked 5,535 steps, which is much lower than what she usually walks. She must be off to a slow start. Today was much better for me, as I've been dogsitting my sister's dog Sadie, who I took to two (small) parks and around the block today. Tomorrow I'm taking her around Westhampton Lake at U of R before I relinquish her.

Then it's just me and the motivational words of Conan the Barbarian (in regards to what is best in life): To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women.

I am also accepting sponsors. All donations will go to the Human Fund.

Friday, May 23, 2008

100,000 strong (...and growing)

On the way to work yesterday morning, my not-so-trusty 2000 Volkswagen Jetta hit a milestone: 100,000 miles. It only took about 8 years and 3 months.

And to think last August when I took it in to get it serviced, the mechanic recommended that I replace the timing belt if I wanted it to last beyond 100,000 miles. My response: "I'm hoping to unload this car soon. I'll let that be someone else's problem." Yeep! It'll be tough grasping my steering wheel with all of my fingers crossed.*

*Especially in light of the fact that a broken timing belt recently did $2,000 worth of damage to my brother-in-law's 1998 Passat.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Quick move reviews

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: I miss Communists. When I was growing up, they were the go-to Bad Guys in practically every movie. There was nothing quite like some godless Reds talking smack about this fine country to get your blood pumping. Now they've been replaced with Neo-Nazis and EEEEVIL corporations. *Yawn* So this movie was doubly nostalgic: a new Indiana Jones movie AND Cate Blanchett and company chewing up the scenery as a bunch of ruthless Ruskies. And I had a blast. I'm glad to say that this didn't bring a Phantom Menace level let-down. A 60+ year-old Indy globe trotting in the Atomic Age provided a lot of laughs and action. Upon little reflection, my rankings: 1) Raiders (perfection) 2) Last Crusade (it's got Sean Freakin' Connery) 3. Crystal Skull (a close third) 4. Temple of Doom (two words: Kate Capshaw)

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian: Enjoyable, if a bit overlong. I'd put it on par with the first movie. I've only read C.S. Lewis's non-fiction stuff, so I'm not sure how far the movie strayed from the source material. With this movie, Peter Dinklage (Elf, Death at a Funeral) has moved past Tom Cruise as the best little person currently working in Hollywood.

No Country for Old Men: I liked this film, but I didn't swoon like all the critics did. Yeah, Javier Bardem was great (as was the rest of the cast), but there wasn't much to the plot. At the risk of having my Movie Geek Card revoked, I'm going to say that I enjoyed The Ladykillers more.

I Am Legend: Will Smith did an admirable job portraying the mental state of the last (healthy) man on Earth and the isolated NYC set was pretty eerie. Unfortunately, the movie was undone by the terribly unrealistic looking infected people. This ranks near the top of big budget/unforgivably awful CGI movies.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Crush of the Week: Megyn Kelly

This week's Crush is Fox News Channel babe Megyn Kelly. Watching all of the election stuff, I've been seeing her a lot lately.

It's kind of pointless trying to get any news coverage from her, though, because whenever she's on TV all I hear is the swelling of strings and the screen goes soft with images of bluebirds and hearts swirling around her.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

This is a test of the Henry Winkler Emergency Broadcast System. This is only a test.

It's surprising that even with the supreme coolness of the Fonz behind it, the honk molestation alert never really caught on.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Yo! Ding Dong, man. Ding Dong. Ding Dong. Yo!

The vending machine at work was recently stocked with Ding Dongs. I wasn't really hungry, but I spent a buck just to take this picture and make a "Weird Al" reference.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Hey, hot women: Get to know me!

A study recently published in the Journal of Family Psychology finds that women who marry uglier men have happier marriages than those that have physically attractive husbands. I guess "The King of Queens" isn't purely science fiction like I previously thought.

Apparently, this raises concerns when coupled with an older study that concluded if you want to be happy for the rest of your life never make a pretty woman your wife.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Micah World Summer Movie Checklist

Normally, I try to make a Summer Movie Preview, but since the most excellent Iron Man ushered in the popcorn season a couple of weeks ago, I'll just call this a checklist. What follows is merely a list of upcoming films that have piqued my interest. Will I see them all in the theater? Doubtful, if you go by my want-to-see/actually-saw ratio for previous summers (or any season, for that matter). But here there are, in order of release date:

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (May 16): Honestly, I don't know if I'll catch this in the theater or not. I saw the first one - which I liked - on DVD. Maybe I'll just save my 950 pennies for...

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (May 22): Maybe I'll see this one. Did your Sarcasm Detector explode? spydrz suggested catching a midnight showing on opening day and, while I know that I would be completely worthless at work the next day if I did go, I'm totally in.

The Strangers (May 30): From what I gather, this is about a group of people in scary masks that break into Steven Tyler's daughter's house and terrorize her and her mate. I'm a huge wuss when it comes to this stuff, but I'm morbidly curious.

The Incredible Hulk (June 13): Yep, I'm a Marvel fanboy/apologist and I'll be there opening weekend. I think we, as a nation, need a cleansing after the last Hulk movie. Plus, Edward Norton is da bomb.

Wall-E (June 27): Considering the titular robot is a garbage compactor stuck on Earth after all the humans jump ship, I'm afraid there'll be some green message to this movie. But it's Pixar, so it gets a pass.

Hancock (July 2): Will Smith plays an unlikeable, alcoholic superhero who hires a PR guy to get back into the public's good graces. It'll be fun to see a twist on the genre.

The Dark Knight (July 18): Again, this is another no-brainer. I just hope director Christopher Nolan managed to carve enough money out of the movie's budget to invest in a tripod.

Step Brothers (July 25): Even if I didn't already know from Ricky Bobby that the pairing of Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly is comedy gold, I'd still see this based on the bunk bed scene in the trailer. That gets me every time.

Tropic Thunder (August 15): This one's about a group of actors filming a war movie and they get caught in the middle of an actual skirmish. Ben Stiller's lost his luster somewhat, but when he's in stuff that he writes and directs he's usually on his game. Plus it's got a great cast: Robert Downey Jr., Jack Black, Steve Coogan, Nick Nolte, and Tom Cruise.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (August 15): If this is more like the Cartoon Network series and less like The Phantom Menace, I'll be happy.

Possibles: The Happening (June 13), Get Smart (June 20), The X-Files: I Want To Believe (July 25), Hellboy II: The Golden Army (July 11), The Rocker (August 1), Pineapple Express (August 8)

Office chatter

Tonight's season finale of "The Office": "Goodbye, Toby"

It's Toby's goodbye party and Michael demands a huge celebration.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

School me on Flickr and Picasa

For years I used Sony's Imagestation to store my photos online and they met my needs. You couldn't really beat free unlimited storage. That's probably why they closed up shop. After they went out of business I had my pictures automatically transferred to Shutterfly, but I don't really care for that service. I have taken many pictures since joining that site, but haven't uploaded any of them. I've been investigating my options and have narrowed it down to Flickr and Picasa.

Right now I am leaning towards Flickr, mainly because it seems more "fun," for lack of a better term. The community aspect and some of the bells and whistles appeal to me. But then, Picasa seems like it will seamlessly integrate with all things Google, which is also plus. Neither service offers free unlimited storage so it looks like I'll have to go the premium route no matter what I choose. I had at least a gigabyte of pics on Imagestation and I plan on re-uploading all of them over time.

What do y'all use? What are the pros and cons of each of these sites? Is there some viable third option that I've completely overlooked?

You've got your big cheese. I've got my hash pipe.

My Mom recently was on holiday in Fort Lauderdale and Key West and brought back a souvenir for me. Knowing that I enjoy a pipeful of a nice English or aromatic blend of tobacco at the end of a long day, she bought me a new pipe. A WEED PIPE!

Now, she honestly didn't know that it is intended for illicit substances*, but you'd think certain aspects of the pipe would tip her off to its purpose, namely the Rastafarian and the spliff hanging from his mouth. She wanted me to destroy it after I told her what it was, but I'm going to hang onto it. Anyway, we had a good laugh, but Mom was pretty embarrassed. The next time she goes away on vacation I hope she brings me back a mirror to cut cocaine on.

*Apparently, the guy who sold it to her maintained that it wasn't for marijuana. Then he tried to sell her a glass pipe, too.

Monday, May 12, 2008

These are just what I need to optimize the performance of my 2000 VW Jetta

I've had my eyes on these lace-up driver shoes for some time now, but Land's End has been playing more games with my heart than the Backstreet Boys (They're in stock! They're out of stock! They're in stock! They're out of stock!). Well, I luckily found a window where I was able to throw money at the online retailer and order the shoes.

They arrived today and, while I still really dig the style, they could probably stand to be a half-size smaller than what I ordered. But I'm going to keep them because I don't want to go through the hassle of exchanging them (especially since said smaller size isn't currently in stock). I will remedy the problem by wearing thick socks and achieving a state of gellin'.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Saturday, May 10, 2008

What shall I puff next?

Well, I recently finished my tin of Dunhill Nightcap (it only took me 7 months!) and now I am trying to decide which tin I should open next: Early Morning Pipe or Royal Yacht.

Decisions, decisions.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Crush of the Week: Alyssa Milano

This week's Crush is actress Alyssa Milano, who is currently guest-starring on "My Name Is Earl"*.

And for having her own line of MLB clothes and baseball blog, she proves that she is the boss.

*Which I didn't get to see the end of last night. Thank you very much, needless inclement weather alert (for another place in the state that has its own NBC affiliate, I might add).

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Requiem for a Tennessee Plowboy

R.I.P. Eddie Arnold, 1918-2008.

You're country croonin' in a better place now.

30 Rock tumbler

Tonight's season finale of "30 Rock": "Cooter"

Jack heads to Washington and Liz handles a positive pregnancy test.


Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "Job Fair"

Jim hits the links with Andy and Kevin to try to land his biggest client ever, while Michael sets up a booth at the local job fair in search for an intern.


Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Hipsters everywhere are now (ironically) planning their funerals

To profess his love of the beer, Bill Bramanti of Illinois had his custom-ordered coffin resemble a can of Pabst Blue Ribbon. And then threw a party.

Note to self: Order casket and have it painted to look like a giant can of Fresca. Or R2-D2.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

She's off the market.

Scarlett Johansson is engaged. I guess if it couldn't be me, I'm glad it's Ryan Reynolds. He seems pretty cool.

(Yes, this is yet another thinly-veiled excuse to post a picture of her.)

Monday, May 05, 2008

Quick movie reviews

Iron Man: Awesome, awesome, awesome. Robert Downey, Jr. owns this movie. The most outlandish part of this comic book movie? There's a scene in the beginning where playboy/arms manufacturer Tony Stark is given an award and in his introduction there's a shot of him on the cover of "Rolling Stone" with the words "Protecting the World." As if that rag would give this type of person a positive cover story. Marvel comics fanboys: make sure you stick around until the end of the credits.

21: Or Ocean's Eleven: The New Class. This was a fun movie with a kick-butt soundtrack. Just forgive the implausibilities and plot holes and have a good time.

Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed: At times it strays from its main point (institutes of higher learning firing people if they stray off of the academic plantation), but it was okay. People's minds will already be made up when going in, though.

Vantage Point: A nice diversion with a cool gimmick, but nothing more.

Semi-Pro: Well, I'm glad it was rated R because the few laughs that are present are derived from the profanity. Other than that, it wasn't all that great.

There Will Be Blood: Daniel Day Lewis completely deserved his Oscar. A wonderful film.

Beowulf: It's a cliche to say that nowadays watching most action movies is like watching a video game, but here that point is valid. Frank from "30 Rock" is right in that the more realistic the animation, the creepier it looks. Silliest part: Grendel's mom had high-heeled feet.

The Kite Runner: Usually, I'm not a fan of movies about boy rape, but this was pretty good.

Death at a Funeral: This was funny, but it would've been even funnier if I hadn't seen the trailer beforehand (the funniest parts were in it).

Friday, May 02, 2008

Spoiler alert

After reading a couple of mini-treatises regarding spoilers (found here and here) - which I am in complete agreement with - I figured that I'd add my own lil' rant: As much as I think DVRs are the bee's knees, I hate how they are changing the TV viewing society. I will only say this once: just because you haven't watched a program that you recorded doesn't mean others can't discuss it in detail. The same goes for movies.

That is all.

Note: This mini-rant is not directed at any one person in particular, but applies to more annoying members of message board and forum communities.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

30 Rock tumbler

Tonight's episode of "30 Rock": "Sandwich Day"

Liz gets a visit from her ex-boyfriend, Floyd, while Jack worries his days at GE are numbered.


Office chatter

Tonight's episode of "The Office": "Did I Stutter?"

When Stanley snaps at Michael in a meeting, Michael decides to give Stanley an attitude adjustment.