Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Conch Shack

I'm glad that I'm off of work tomorrow. I've been a day ahead all week, so I've thought that today was Friday. In a way it is, because we're headed to the beach tomorrow for 9 days! 9 days - that may be a new record.

Have a good week. If you need something to discuss, what about this: products that you WILL NOT purchase because the ads make you hate the product. Example: I hate the Toyota Camry commercial wherein the girl is going on a blind date with some guy. They're talking on the phone and he's trying to convince her that he's outside her apartment - parked and waiting on her. She's all stupidly, "I don't see a Camry. You're not out there..." So he drives off and she sees the car and says "Call me!" Who are these people? Who does that? I went on a couple of blind dates a lifetime ago, but I never sat out in the car and called the girl down to the car. Of course, I didn't have a cell phone until a couple of years ago.

Anyway, toodles.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Imitation is the Most Sincere Form of Flattery,

Except When It's Not.

I don’t know if you guys are watching it, but I really like the “Studio 60”. It comes on NBC at 9:00 PM on Monday, which means that I’ll probably have to Divo it most of the time. Last night, however, I felt wide-awake at 9:00. Jack hasn’t slept well the last, well, 8 ½ months, but he really hasn’t slept well that past three or four nights. Thank you ear infection #2. Point being, I felt wide awake, but I may have been at that point where you’re so far past tired that you actually feel pretty good. The same thing happens when I’m so hungry that I my body figures it will never receive another morsel of food, so it doesn’t think about eating. That doesn’t happen much, though.

Anyway, “Studio 60” by Aaron Sorkin. I read that Sorkin also did “The West Wing”, otherwise I wouldn’t have known him from Brenda Hampton. You might assume that “Studio 60” leans a little to the left, and you would be right. Leah rolls her eyes about a dozen times an episode and has, more than once, announced, “I CANNOT WATCH THIS SHOW!” She’s watched the first two episodes with me, though, because she’s a little trooper. And I had the remote. And she was too tired to go to another room. And she knows that “Grey’s” doesn’t do much for me.

The fictitious “Studio 60”, broadcast on the fictitious NBS network (ah, N’BS’ network…just noticed that…I wonder if that’s something) gives a possibly realistic glimpse in to the behind the scenes world of “SNL”. At least realistic in the sense that it has to be nerve-wracking coming up with 90 minutes of comedy every 7 days. Of course, given SNL's performance the last few years, it's tough to just come up with 90 minutes of content every 7 days. Still, think about how hard it is to come up with something interesting to write about in your blog - and you only have to update your blog when you want.

The pilot episode began with the show’s Executive Producer (or Director, doesn’t matter) lambasting the network, the FCC, the Christian right, the Enlightened left, everyone in-between, and the viewing audience for the dismal state of American television shows. For 53 seconds he skewered the aforementioned while the network's standards guy – who had ordered the Executive Producer to pull a skit called ‘Crazy Christians’ minutes before airtime – tried to get the producer to cut the live broadcast. Needless to say, the rant gets the guy canned. Enter two guys that left, or were fired from – we’re a little unclear - the show four years prior. Matt Albie (Matthew Perry) comes in as head writer, and Danny Tripp (Bradley Whitford) as Executive Producer. Yes, every time one character talks to Matthew Perry’s character, I have to remind myself that his character’s name is ‘Matt’ also, and that they didn’t just screw up and I was the only one who caught it.

The dialogue is quick, but not “Dawsons” quick. The writers don’t try to impress you with their use of multi-syllable words they found in an overused thesaurus (again, see “Dawsons”) and they don’t try to cram a lot of small words in to every delivered line (see “Gilmore Girls” – not that I’ve ever watched that show, not since Rory went off to college anyway). Matthew Perry has done remarkably well. He seems to have landed the jump from comedy to drama with relative ease.

The show does lean to the left. In last night’s episode, a reporter from Rapture Magazine showed up at the news conference to inquire about the Crazy Christians skit. (Rapture, it was stated, has a circulation four times that of Vanity Fair). When the head of the network (Amanda Peet) wouldn’t guarantee the Rapture reporter that the skit would be buried forever and never shown on “Studio 60”, the network started receiving calls from affiliates and advertisers stating that they would not show or support “Studio 60”. The Terre Haute, Indiana and Little Rock-Pine Bluff, Arkansas markets get a little jab for their less than critical statures in the world of network affiliates. In the end, we do not know if the skit aired or not. We only see the opening number – a quirky little musical number making fun of the previous weeks lambasting, and promising that “Studio 60” will be a model for quality television. The closing scene was Matthew Perry looking up at a digital display that tells him how long it is until the next show airs - 6 Days, 23 Hours, 57 Minutes, 19 Seconds.

So far, I’ve enjoyed the show, but tune in next week and make up your own mind.

I’ve also gotten in to the Sudoku, so we can talk about that if you like. I try to play online at work, but the fun Nazis (a/k/a, IT censors) won’t allow it.


Friday, September 22, 2006

Maybe I Expect Too Much...

First off, the funniest little story that I read this week, again from Jeannette Walls’ column at

BeyoncĂ© Knowles has created an alter ego named Sasha, and she turns to Sasha when her own ego gets a tad fragile. “When I feel uncomfortable about something, I tell myself, ‘I’m Sasha, I’m a diva, I’m fierce, I can do it.’ And then I can,” Knowles tells Blender. “Sometimes when BeyoncĂ© slips through, I’m like ‘Hold up, come back!’ Sasha protects me. It’s a good way to keep sane.”

1.) The part, “and then I can”, kills me every time that I read it.
2.) I guess “sane” has become a relative term.

I’ve spent a lot of time this week wondering about this whole ‘blog’ thing. Specifically I’ve tried to apply the “well-if-it-was-easy-then-everyone-would-be-doing-it” theory to the blog world, but I’m getting an unexpected result. On one hand, blogging is easy and it appears that everyone is doing it, but the reality is that isn’t really that simple. Sure, it’s easy to cut and paste an article that you read on another website in to the little box and click ‘publish’. On the other hand, actually producing something of value is rather difficult.

Maybe it’s just because I’m not as well read as Karly and Katie and, therefore, am not able to speak even semi-intelligently on a world of different subjects. I’m not even sure where this month’s Runner’s World is. I know that it was delivered to the house, and usually I check out the ‘I’m a Runner’ page to see who’s a runner, but I didn’t even do that this month. It’s not that I didn’t want to read it, the magazine has just disappeared…like sleeping late on Sunday mornings, it’s just gone.

Maybe it’s because, unlike Beyonce, I don’t have an alter ego that takes over my very being, allowing me to break through the writer’s block and produce something inspiring and entertaining, or at the very least, mildly amusing. I mean, my alter ego takes over sometimes, but usually only when I’m sleep deprived and peeps keep asking dumba$$ questions.

Maybe it’s because I’m really not that good of a writer. Karly can take something as simple as a wasp hanging out in her house and make it sound interesting. Katie talks about buttons and pins and other people’s kids in such a manner that you KNOW that she believes in what she’s doing. Even first timer Michelle was able to post an entertaining, organized and well thought-out piece that came across as very free flowing. Me, I ain’t that good.

Some blogs have agendas. They’re pro-Bush, or pro-Anyone but Bush or some other such nonsense (at least to me). Me, I’m not really for or against much of anything, and it’s kind of important to have some relatively strong feelings about something in order to rally behind it. To have been born and raised in Alabama, a member of a Southern Baptist church (not just an “SBC joint”) my entire life, I think that I’m a little more left of right than most people would think, but I’m not off the scale on any one topic. I’ve never voted for a Democratic presidential or gubernatorial candidate, but that’s probably because I look and see who’s campaigning for that candidate and get so repulsed that I can’t bring myself to pull the lever for the donkey party. If any Dem candidate would ever tell Hollywood, “Thank you for your vote, and once I’m elected y’all can jump up and down, get high on the Greenhouse gases and talk crazy all you want, but until then, let’s keep the insanity on the down-low”, I think I might could get behind them.

I’m not voting for Lucy, though, because she’s “too liberal, too liberal, too liberal for Alabama”, but Bob Riley’s taking advice from someone who fought alongside the Mujahadeen - that can't be good for the kids...and it's about the kids, y'all. This might be another year that I vote for the write-in candidate. I do find it interesting how Riley has been able to absolutely bury the $1.2 BILLION tax package that he proposed during his first year in office. It probably wouldn’t make much political hay for Lucy to bring it up, what with her voting for it and all.

See, providing anything of value and substance is hard. Maybe I’m aiming too high. Maybe I should keep it to sophomoric humor and just tell you about the guy that I saw walking down the stairs in our building this morning. He entered the stairwell on four, I was walking down from five to go to Harbin's to get some cough medicine/nasal decongestant (just in case you were wondering). He was wearing his ID badge so he was either leaving work or going on break, I’m not sure which, but he had been at work so it really doesn’t matter where he was going at this moment. Apparently he felt appropriate Friday work attire to be a light blue t-shirt with MIAMI VICE in large, colorful block lettering across the chest, blue jeans, and flip-flops.

I wish that I could bring myself to wear something that laid back, but I guess I’m a little too right of center for that. And I didn’t come straight to work from the Kathy Griffin after-party.

I hope you saw, or Tivo’d, The Office last night. Funny stuff. My favorite line, “I watch The L-Word. I watch Queer as F#&k.” “That’s not the name of the show!”

That's all I got. More mediocrity.

Have a good weekend.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Been away...

I know that I haven't posted in over a week. Thanks for all the get well cards and well wishes, but I was just in San Antonio. I would have rather been sick.

San Antonio was okay, and it should be real nice once they finish building it. We got bumped from the conference hotel because the hotel overbooked. We didn't get in until Sunday, so we got moved to the Residence Inn (from the Marriott) two blocks away. It was still hot (90+ every day) and it rained every day that we were there. The cab driver said that it hadn't rained since April. Lucky us...walking back and forth to the privileged hotel with stupid presentation handouts.

Okay, Jack is calling. Adios amigos.

Friday, September 08, 2006


This is going to get a little confusing with all the quotation marks, but you can read the original text on Jeanette Walls' page. The article was about Lionel Richie taking his daughter, Nicole, to a clinic in Sweden because he was concerned about her weight loss.

"“I stood in front of [the doctor], just like you and I now, looked him in the eyes, and I said ‘Is it anorexia?’ And he said ‘It isn’t anorexia,’” the musician told the Swedish newspaper Expressen, according to our translator."

"According to our translator"? Isn't Lionel Richie from Tuskegee, Alabama? What language was he speaking that needed translated? I mean, I haven't needed Lionel Richie translated to me since that creepy "Hello" video where he stalked the blind girl. Oddly enough, I could relate to "Dancing on the Ceiling".

Tuesday, September 05, 2006



I’ll have to come up with blankety blanks, and that will take some time. So instead, I’m going to recap a couple of things that happened over the holiday weekend.

1. I went 9-1 in the football pool, but that was only good enough for 4th place. Katie went 8-2 (or maybe 9-1) and leads the pool. I missed my 8 point game, Katie and two other peeps missed some lower point games.

2. Brandon got one year older. I’m not sure what that makes him (33?), but I’m pretty sure that I’m still older than he.

3. I went to the Auburn – Washington State game in the loveliest village on the plain(s) with four Auburn fans. We had a good time, but I was ready to leave before the game started.
Some observations/funny stuff:

A. Heard outside of Tiger Rags: “I just don’t like these new armor all shirts. The Russell shirts were better.”

B. I know this will ruffle some feathers, but we’ll just have to agree to disagree: Auburn fans are somewhat delusional. They believe not only that they have a campus, but also that it is one of the loveliest in the nation. They have some nice buildings, Samford Hall makes a nice backdrop, but their campus is UAB-esque. It’s all parking lots and Toomer’s corner. One of the guys I was with said, “I think that Auburn and Ole Miss have the most beautiful campuses in the country.” Seen ‘em all, have you?

C. Apparently, the four inch denim skirt is in. I’m guessing you stand the entire day if you wear one of those.

4. Family heirlooms don’t mean beans to some people.

Here’s my take on keeping items that belonged to a now deceased family member. If the item reminds you of that person and gives you a warm, happy feeling, then keep it. If you’re keeping the item because it was grandma’s and you think that she’ll haunt you for giving it away or throwing it out – buy yourself some garlic and get rid of it. My parents have a basement full of furniture from my grandmother’s house that is doing nothing but growing mold. I have a couple of boxes of cookbooks, but I’ll get rid of those when Leah lets go of her Zaps!

It seemed like a much busier weekend.