Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Ask a person with vague notions on how the economy works

By the nature of my job, I’ve been keeping a close eye on the economic shenanigans that have been going on for the past few weeks. I’ve decided to use my position to answer any and all questions you may have about your money right now.

1) Should I take all my money out of the bank and put it under my mattress? Probably not. Especially if you smoke in bed and/or have a lot of candles in your bedroom (rimshot!) But really, all money you put in a bank is ensured up to $100,000. Somehow I doubt any of you guys have more money than that. If you do though, you probably should take out the excess and put it somewhere safer. Like, for example, under my mattress.

2) Are we entering another Great Depression? Too soon to tell, but most signs point to no. This does a good job explaining how much worse shape the overall economy was in the early 1930s than it is now. To sum it up: The Crash of ’29 brought the stock market down like 17 percent, this last dive only took it down 7 percent. Plus, the entire economy contracted 46 percent (!) in the early 1930s. Our economy is still growing right now. Of course Campbell Soup was the only stock to make money on Monday, and nothing says disaster like people stocking up on canned goods, so never say never.

3) Bonnie & Clyde, The Sting and O Brother Where Art Thou all made the Depression look kind of cool. Wouldn’t it be cool if we had another Great Depression? No.

4) Isn’t it true that the only thing that really got us out of The Great Depression was World War II? Not entirely. But I’d still watch your back, Germany.

5) Why are we still talking about the Great Depression? Didn’t you just say we’re NOT entering another Great Depression. Yes, good point. Let’s get back on track here people!

6) I hear a lot of people talking about this on TV and the radio and stuff, but no one can seem to reach a consensus on how it started, nevermind how to fix it. Is that a problem? Absolutely, but we're used to that kind of thing by now, aren't we? Ladies and gentlemen, the 24 hour news cycle!
7) So what did happen here? Ummm, banks gave a bunch of people who couldn't handle credit a ton of credit. Now there's bad debt everywhere and a bunch of financial institutions sank or are sinking as a result. Plus some other stuff. I think. Stop asking me such hard questions!

8) I’m glad the bailout failed. Who wants to help a bunch of Wall Street fat cats? I mean, am I right or am I right? You’re wrong. The idea of forking over money to Wall Street is unappealing to be sure, but the money's actually being borrowed from taxpayers, not taken. And some of the most conservative, pro-free market economic thinkers I know all say it's necessary to prevent this crisis from getting worse. One of the biggest problems right now is that the credit markets are frozen: No one is lending money. This is an issue because a lot of companies need credit just to make payroll. Our economy, for better or worse, is based on credit these days. With credit frozen, everything freezes. This is a bad thing. Most people agree that the $700 billion bailout would loosen up the credit markets.

9) I had no money to begin with, hate working and love Ramen Noodles, so this doesn’t seem like that big of a deal to me. Same here doll face, same here.

Countdown to 30: 61 Days

I turn 30 exactly 2 months from today and, as a wise man once said, "like all women, [I think my] birthday's the biggest deal in the history of recorded time." Now, I'm not as selfish as some people. I don't expect you all to actually give me gifts or draw me pictures or even leave me comments/posts posts about my greatness. All I ask is you come to my birthday party. In San Diego. Thanksgiving weekend.

My selflessness knows no bounds.

Now, maybe you are thinking, "Red, I don't even really know you. Why would I give up a full weekend of fun with my family in my cold ass city half-way/all the way across the country to spend the most significant birthday you may ever have with you in sunny San Diego?" Well, I'm glad you asked:

1. I can guarantee San Diego will be warmer than wherever you plan to spend your holiday. Unless you live in Miami or Hawaii...and then screw you.

2. I'm sure your family is lovely, but I'd bet $50 you'd love an excuse to skip out on Thanksgiving this year. If not, you really need to reconsider just how American you are. I mean, what's more American than avoiding your family? Nothing, that's what. (Canadian readers...no Thanksgiving excuse for you. Suckers!)

3. Traveling on Thanksgiving weekend is fun! Where else can you see the worst of humanity all huddled together in one place? Think. You could have your very own Planes, Trains and Automobiles experience!

4. You'd get to meet me, Liz and Dave!

I'm giving you plenty of notice, so you can get your travel arrangements all sorted. C'mon, friends. This is all I want from you for my birthday (yes, even you, Mathdude). I really don't think I'm asking too much.

P.S. If you don't think you'll make it, send me an email and I'll let you know where to send your gifts. You're welcome.

Monday, September 29, 2008

This (mostly) Just In...

ScarJo is Married - My ex-girlfriend finally tied the knot with Ryan Reynolds. Thankfully, I've moved on. Really. I'm not at all sad about this. I'm very happy for them. Seriously. I didn't die a little inside when I heard this at all. I swear.

Springsteen to Play Super Bowl Halftime Show - As a huge Springsteen fan, I'm totally looking forward to his performance. Here's hoping he plays more from Born to Run than from, say, The Rising.

Project Runway Season 6 Delayed Until January - We'll have to wait a bit longer to see how Lifetime (and the team that brings you The Real World. Yikes!) butchers everyone's favorite fashion reality show. On a similar note, I know everyone thinks Korto has this season in the bag, but I'm thinking Jerell will win the whole shebang. I'm a predicting machine!

Liz and Red Need a Name - Liz and I are in the early stages of forming a 2 woman cover band to rival our "friends" Fever Crotch and we need a name. Any suggestions?

I hope you're happy. *sniff*

I Think About You Nightly

To prove to ourselves we aren't grandmas, Liz and I went to see Ra Ra Riot in concert last night. The doors opened at 8 so we arrived at 9:30, figuring we'd be just in time for RRR, but the doorman told us they didn't go on until 11:30. 11:30 on a Sunday night! So, like the classy ladies we are, Liz and I walked a few blocks to one of our favorite watering holes and had an Indian law student buy us drinks and tell us we looked "intelligent, artistic and 21," while asking the skeezy girl at the bar to slap him repeatedly. He was awesome. Around 11, we wandered back to the Casbah just in time to experience what we'd stayed up way past our bedtimes to see.

An indie band from Syracuse, New York, Ra Ra Riot consists of 6 kids who look like the nerdiest drama club/band geeks to emerge from your local high school (the lead singer wore a tie-dyed Yoda t-shirt, for chrissakes), but they mix rock with an electric cello and violin for a really cool sound Liz calls "Arcade Fire without the histrionics." While not as good live as they are on their debut album, Ra Ra Riot got Liz dancing and me telling the lead singer I was from Baltimore...basically, rocking to them live made us a little giddy. Or maybe that was the Guinness.

Anywho, check out Ra Ra Riot because they are cool and when they blow up you will be able to say, "Pshaw! I've known about R cubed (as I'm calling them now) for ages." It's all about bragging rights, people.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Nobody's Fool

We rarely post on the weekends, but today, something must be said. Paul Newman, one of the greatest actors ever, has died. This makes me very sad. I loved him first in The Color of Money, when he schooled a young Tom Cruise in the ways of pool hustling, but I really fell in love with him when I saw Cool Hand Luke. Good lord, was he gorgeous. He was also a do-gooder, creating a line of foods and beverages with all after-tax profits going to charity. Seems like a pretty swell guy and he will be missed.

Friday, September 26, 2008

When Banks Collapse

So, my bank failed. I was a proud WaMu customer until this morning, now I’m apparently a proud JPMorgan Chase customer.

The annoying thing is, I’ve been in the middle of switching banks. I’d been meaning to move to a money market-esque account with another company for a few months now. Then I saw WaMu was on “shaky ground” and decided to finally get on it. I would have finished everything by this weekend. Couldn’t you wait until next week to fail, WaMu? God.

I guess it's not that big of deal. Supposedly if you’re a WaMu customer, you won’t be affected too much. (Unless you were a stock holder. In which case, sucks to be you!) ATM cards still work, accounts are still open, branches are still standing, etc. Things will just say JPMorgan Chase on them. I have to admit, I’m a little disappointed. I mean, if a bank’s gonna fail, let’s have it FAIL! I want to go to my local branch and be surrounded by angry customers demanding their money. I want the crowd to be wearing fedoras and overcoats. Then I want to jump in my jalopy and head for the breadline.

Come on people, if we’re gonna do this thing, let’s do it right. Greatest. Depression. Ever!

Life's Questions: As Seen on The Office

In last night's season premiere of The Office, Holly (aka The New Toby) asked Michael "Why do guys not call when they say they will call?" Michael, of course, always calls everyone back immediately, but, as we all know, Michael is a special breed of man.

So, fellas, answer the question. Why do men not call when they say they will call? And furthermore, why do men ask for your number and then never call at all? I'm just curious...you know, for a friend...guys always call me when they say they will. Always.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Headlines that you'd think are from The Onion or something but aren't (Vol. 2)

"Palin once blessed to be free from 'witchcraft'"

(I know this is the second one of these posts that has to do with witchcraft. I guess I just find modern people actually believing in witchcraft really frakin' funny).

This (mostly) Just In...

The Office: The Soap Opera Continues - Everyone's favorite comedy (after 30 Rock, natch) returns tonight with an hour long episode. When we left the Dunder-Mifflinites, Jim's proposal to Pam was cockblocked by Andy's proposal to Angela...who was later spotted by Phyllis getting it on with Dwight. Oh the drama! I'm most looking forward to seeing what happens with the new Toby (Amy Ryan) and Michael. They seem like a match made in heaven, but I'm still not convinced she not just placating him. All will, hopefully, be revealed.

Ricky Gervais: Oscar Host? - After his hilarious appearance on the Emmy's, rumors are swirling Ricky could be next year's Oscar host. This may be filed under the "who really cares" area of your brain, but I'd love to spend 3 hours with Ricky next February...or anytime really.

Survivor: Now in HD - The show no one still watches also returns tonight in the "earth's last Eden," Gabon, Africa. The show will be broadcast in HD for the first time in it's billion year history. Should make for some really gorgeous TV (except when the horribly unwashed humans appear on screen).

Clay Aiken: Gay - I don't know if you've heard (and I'm sure you are shocked if you haven't), but everyone (read: my grandma's) favorite American Idol runner-up is gay. Sorry Grandma.

Hunter Johansson: Future Husband - Why did no one ever tell me Scarlett Johansson has a twin brother? Did it just escape your mind to mention it, people? You really want me to just die alone with 20 cats, don't you? Jerks.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Confessions of a Facebooktard

I hate social networking sites. They always make me feel like such an old lady and a loser. However, one day earlier this year, a friend sent me a song by a mutual friend on Facebook and I had to sign-up to listen. So, I did...because I am weak.

Now, people send me virtual stuff on a semi-daily basis. My friend Anastasia sends me fish for my H2Otopia (she also cleans my tank since I can't figure out how to do it myself). Apparently, if I sent her fish, it would somehow provide clean water for all the kids in Africa (and keep her for a friend, as accepting gifts without reciprocating is kinda douchey). My friend Angela sends me plants for a virtual garden. Again, if I could figure out how to send her plants in return, it would save, like, a billion acres of rain forest in the Amazon. The internets are magic! This morning, I was informed I am now "owned" and am worth $6,850. While I think that price is a little low, I don't understand why some people are worth only a dollar and I'm worth more than six grand...especially since I've never done anything to increase my worth. It's all very confusing.

All evidence posted here to the contrary, I am not a moron, but Facebook makes me feel like I couldn't program a VCR (and I can! Or I could when people still used that archaic technology). Granted, if I can't figure out how to do something within 30 seconds, I give up and move on to something else, but still...all these things are evidence I am, as I suspected, too old and lame for Facebook. So, after I use it to invite everyone I've ever met to my 30th birthday party, I will disappear from The Book and vow to never virtually network again. So say we all.

(P.S. Thanks for sending me stuff, friends. It makes me feel special, even if I complain and don't know what to do with any of it.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Add This to Your Queue: Speed Racer

I wanted to see Speed Racer, a live action version of the old Japanese cartoon by the Wachowski brothers, while it was in the theater because the trailer looked so totally rad. Then, it came out and the reviews were terrible, and I decided to see Iron Man instead. Now Speed Racer is out on DVD and available to view on my own personal "big screen." I watched it last night while everyone else in San Diego cheered on the Chargers...and totally enjoyed it.

During it's theatrical release, most of the poor reviews criticized the less than stellar plot and the claimed no one under 10 would like the film. Well, I'm nearly 30 and I loved every minute...mainly because it looks unlike any movie I've ever seen. Sure, some of the acting is over-the-top and some of the gags are aimed purely at children while the main plot confilct is rather heady, but the anime/video game world the Wachowski's created is truly amazing. Much like their The Matrix movies, Speed Racer is worth checking out for the visuals, if nothing else.

Also, could someone please get Christina Ricci a sandwich? Anyone?

Emmys Recap

Looks like your prescious little Mad Men will get at least one more season.

For those who couldn’t stand to sit through the 2 to 3 hour self-love fest that was the Emmys last night, I’ve compiled a list of highlights:

Mad Men won best drama – Red must be so pleased.

Tina Fey is really good at giving acceptance speeches – It’s a tie between Jenny Lewis and Tina Fey as to who is my biggest girl crush right now, but until Jenny proves me wrong, I’m going with Fey as the better speech giver. She won 3 statues for 30 Rock, for writing, acting and Best Comedy, and all three speeches made me laugh. One fav line: “Thank you to my parents for raising me to have a confidence level far above my looks and abilities.”

Bryan Cranston won, and is adorable - I’ve never seen his show, but who doesn’t like Byran Cranston? (Better known to me as the Dad from Malcolm in the Middle). His acceptance speech was cute, thanking his wife, daughter and sister.

Paul Giamatti specifically thanked his fake wife over his real wife! This was awesome. Giamatti won for playing John Adams in the miniseries biopic (which is really good, btw) and he got up and there and said, “I need to thank my wife,” and they show his wife looking all proud and happy, and then he corrects himself and says, “Not my real wife, my fake wife, Laura,” meaning Laura Linney, who played Abigail Adams. The camera is still on his real wife, who throws her hands in the air in a “WTF?” kind of gesture. Comic gold.

Five hosts are a terrible idea – Why is there Heidi Klum? I know Red loves her, but I found her very unlikeable. Of course, I’ve never seen Project Runway. But really, the whole idea of having 5 reality/game show hosts MC the Emmys was a terrible idea anyway. The bit where they gave out the award like it was a reality show was kind of funny, I guess, but only because we didn’t have to hear them talk for a while.

Conan O'Brien is still the funniest guy ever - Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart get a lot of well-deserved attention and props these days, but Conan is still the best. One of the best parts of any TV-related awards show is when they show the nominees for writing on a variety program, because all those shows - Letterman, the Daily Show, etc - usually make a big joke out of it, showing the writers doing stupid things, or showing people who aren't actually the writers. For Conan's bit, they kept showing all these little kids of different ethnicities when they said the writers' names. Like it was a class picture or something. But then it pans back, and it's Conan in bed with Angelina Jolie, and there's like 20 kids in the bed, all from different countries. Maybe you had to see it, but it was hilarious.

Top 5: Things I Accomplished While Quasi-Unemployed

I'm back to work today, people. Turned out my "furlough" was really code for "take 3 weeks off (mostly paid) and realize your suspicions about the awesomeness of never working are all completely true." I did accomplish most of what I set out to do (Lost is effing amazing), but here are 5 things I accomplished without even trying (suck on that, To-Do List!):

1. Watched Six Feet Under Season 1 - I mentioned this before. I'd really like the show if they'd kill off Rachel Griffiths and Jeremy Sisto. I am told this never happens. So, SFU, I am done with you...which is probably good because I need all my spare time to watch all 4 seasons of Lost.

2. Consumed New, Made-Up Cocktails - Let's just say Crown Royal and Grapefruit juice is delicious. Who would have thought?

3. Got a New Haircut - It's so short, I keep catching myself in the mirror and thinking some crazy, strange redhead is in my apartment, realizing it's me and saying, "Damn, girl! You look good!" (because, apparently, I am totally ghetto when I pay myself compliments).

4. Linked Everyone in Reader - You all may have noticed I've not been site stalking you lately. It's mainly because I hate sitting at my computer at home, but it's also because this guy was right. Subscriptions are the way to go.

5. Obtained and Promptly Paid 2 Parking Tickets - The city comes through and sweeps both sides of my street once a month. There are clearly posted signs telling you when this will occur and that you will be ticketed should your car be parked in the forbidden area between 7 and 10am on the predetermined sweeping days. Usually, I am at work when this occurs. This month, I was not. So, I forgot about the damn sweeping on the third Monday of every month and received a $40 ticket for my poor memory. Later that same week, on Wednesday, I parked on the other side of the street...when the sweeper comes through that side...and received another $40 ticket for being a complete moron. Use my $80 wisely, you city of San Diego bastards!

That is everything I accomplished in handy list form. While I can't say it's good to be back at work, I will say it's nice to have a paycheck again. My crazy rock-and-roll lifestyle cannot abide a budget!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Emmy Chat Predictions

Garney and I just ended a marathon chat about baseball and puppies and the Emmys, airing this Sunday. Here's a complete list of nominees and here's who Garney and I think will and should win in the major categories (yeah, it's long, so I've highlighted the "important" stuff if you don't feel like reading our terribly informative and occasionally witty banter, but really, who loses if you don't read why Bryan Cranston should really win the Best Actor in a Drama award? You, that's who):

Me: So the Emmy's are on Sunday

Garney: Are you going to watch the ceremonies or just check out who won?

Me: Probably watch the ceremony on fast-forward. Who's hosting?

Garney: How retarded... or to be more PC... how moronic is it to have the ceremonies hosted by the five people nominated for reality show host?

Me: Oh really? I kinda like that. Heidi Klum and Probsty!

Garney: While the creative arts Emmys get NPH and Sarah Chalke. I'd much rather see Neil Patrick Harris host the whole shebang.

Me: Yeah. That's for sure

Garney: I think he has the Supporting Actor Comedy Emmy in the bag

Me: I agree. Piven can't possibly win again

Garney: I don't think Entourage will win anything

Me: Yeah. No one seems to like that show as much as I do

Garney: It's grown on me on a lot... I didn't like it at all when it first started but it really hit its stride in season 2. It's definitely the male Sex and the City, but like Sex and the City, it will never win the big prize. What nominee are you rooting for most this Sunday? Out of every category

Me: Well, I'm hoping John Adams sweeps all the Miniseries categories (actor, actress, miniseries).

Garney: I'm sure you're siding with me that it will be an absolute travesty if Burns and Simon don't accept the award for writing for the series finale of The Wire....and I'm betting they lose. My biggest fear is that they lose to Damages since Mad Men is nominated twice in that category and there's no way they're giving it to BSG.

Me: True. I can't imagine Damages winning either.

Garney: Damages is in the running for best series though.

Me: I think the best shot for a Damages award will be Best Supporting Actor Drama for Ted Danson and I think he deserves it.

Garney: I think that's the only award Damages deserves.

Me: Agreed, and I liked that show.

Garney: But I think Glenn Close will win... even though I thought it was the worst overacting she's done since Fatal Attraction. It makes me miss her understated performances like what she did in The Natural

Me: She's the only performance I've seen in the Lead Actress Drama Series category, but I wouldn't be surprised if Kyra Sedgwick took the award. People love that damn Closer show.

Garney: You can't count out Holly Hunter either, but I wonder if a lot of people vote for Sally Field just to see what fucked up thing she's going to say in her acceptance speech.

Me: Very true. I'm rooting for Kristen Chenoweth to win Supporting Actress in a Comedy. I think she's got a good shot.

Garney: I'm also pulling for Chenoweth and I think she has a great shot at winning...but there's also Amy Poehler, who is the only SNL performer to ever get nominated in a major category for SNL, and she recently announced that she's quitting the show after the election, so this would be a good sendoff

Me: Very true. And Amy is very funny, but I don't think she has a shot in hell

Garney: I think you're right... and it's as it should be and it's all because the writing is so poor lately.

Me: Yes. I don't watch any of the shows with the Best Supporting Actress in a Drama nominees

Garney: It's Sandra Oh's turn to win

Me: That would be my vote, just because I like Sandra Oh

Garney: Mine too. Grey's is one of Michele's favorites so I caught almost every episode. This was a good season for her character... more emotional than usual

Me: Nice. I hope Stephen Colbert wins Variety, Music, Comedy Series. Just for the speech

Garney: I think he will... with the year that he's had…his book, his "presidential run"... the speech he gave at the correspondents’ dinner. Not to mention the Peabody, but I almost hope he doesn't because it will be even funnier on his show when he rants about it. One of my favorite Emmy moments from last year was when he complained to Jon Stewart about losing to Barry Manilow.

Me: Yes. That was hilarious. I really think Real Time with Bill Mahr deserves the award. No one does what he does so well. Okay Lead Actress in a Comedy series has to be Tina Fey, right?

Garney: I'd actually go with Christina Applegate and I think she'll win too

Me: Really?!

Garney: Perfect example of someone who makes the material better with their performance.

Me: Yeah I guess that's true

Garney: Samantha Who? is not a great show, but she does a really good job making it as funny as it possibly can be

Me: that's true

Garney: and they like to go with quirky for comedy actresses and she's definitely the quirkiest

Me: I dunno about that. Mary-Louise Parker is pretty damn quirky

Garney: I've never watched Weeds and I don't think enough voters do either for that show to ever win anything

Me: Lead Actor in a Drama is a strong category, too.

Garney: Exactly

Me: I'd be happy with John Hamm or Michael C Hall or Bryan Cranston. I think Bryan Cranston actually deserves it most

Garney: Me too... even Gabriel Byrne does a great job and James Spader is always good but enough is enough with him winning all the time

Me: Yes…for that shitty show

Garney: I'm definitely pulling for Cranston. Talk about a fearless unexpected powerful performance.

Me: I do love Michael C Hall as Dexter though

Garney: The main reason I'd pick Cranston over Hall is that Cranston doesn't have the benefit of voice over

Me: You think that really helps?

Garney: I think the voice over definitely makes Dexter more engaging and gets you inside his head

Me: yeah

Garney: You'd have no idea otherwise because of the way his character is

Me: good point

Garney: Cranston is able to be captivating in his silence

Me: very true. Man he is good in that role. Too bad more people didn't watch

Garney: It's even tougher to predict than it is to pick though

Me: yes

Garney: I think it's actually between Byrne and Hamm…which kind of rhymes with Birmingham

Me: I really think Hamm will win

Garney: Since Mad Men got nominated for series and In Treatment didn't I'd put my money on Hamm too, but Byrne is a more established actor and more people watch HBO than AMC

Me: Mad Men will win Best Drama. No contest.

Garney: It definitely should, but the Emmys are usually more groundbreaking in what they award Comedy Series and are a lot more boring when it comes to awarding Drama. Which is why I fear House may take it

Me: I was just going to say, I really can't imagine what would beat it...other than stupid House because Emmy voters are retarded

Garney: I think Mad Men will win though

Me: Me too

Garney: With it being such a passion project for Matthew Weiner, working on it all these years. Man Men is a true Cinderella story

Me: I didn't know that

Garney: Weiner pitched Mad Men to HBO almost ten years ago. He wrote the pilot in 1999 when he was working on Becker. It's what got him a job working on The Sopranos. David Chase saw the script and hired him

Me: Wow. Nice

Garney: Comedy Series... it's definitely 30 Rock vs. The Office even though Curb is way overdo for this award

Me: I agree Curb is overdo and this season was great, but as far as The Office vs. 30 Rock, 30 Rock was better this season. No question

Garney: I disagree... 30 Rock was great but The Office had some classic episodes with Toby leaving, Ryan's drug addled NYC clubbing, and best of all the dinner party…one of the greatest Office episodes ever. I still laugh when I remember Michael talking about the wine's "oaky afterbirth"

Me: Yes! I even rewatched the finale last night and laughed a lot, but while I agree there were classic episodes, everyone's favorite relationship (i.e. Pam and Jim) became incredibly boring.

Garney: You have a point there, but I don't care if they give the award to Two and a Half Men, just as long as Steve Carrell finally beats out Tony Shalhoub for Lead Actor in a Comedy.

Me: Yes. It's Carrell's year. He deserves it. He's so fantastic

Garney: and really Pushing Daisies should be up for series instead of Entourage. Even though the second half of the season of Pushing Daisies was not as good... the first half was so fresh and whimsical and unlike anything else on TV

Me: Agreed. Or instead of Two and a Half Men. Seriously, what the hell with that and Boston Legal being nominated every year?

Garney: I think they have to nominate Two and a Half Men to prove to themselves that the laughtrack sitcom will never die

Me: Probably. And my Dad claims it's the funniest show on TV. Though, he also laughs his ass off at Wipeout, so, you know. No accounting for taste and whatnot.

We then babbled on about writing and directing awards and Mad Men and Broadway shows, so I think I'll just end things there. And for the record, this post is lying in a huge pile of [sic].

How a'rrrrrrr you going to celebrate?

Today is International Talk like a Pirate Day! It's the made-up holiday that launched a thousand made-up holidays, with the point of this one being that you say things like "matey," "shiver me timbers," and "walk the plank ye scurvy dog" all the live long day.

It'd be a lot easier if it fell on a weekend; it's sort of hard to tell your boss and people you need to call during the work day to, "Bring me my grog ye wench, or I'll have ye keel hauled 'til ye dance the jig of death" and things of that nature. But it comes but once a year, so I'll give it my best.

Yo ho!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

What Will You Be for Halloween?

I realize it's mid-September, but the Halloween Superstores have already popped up all over San Diego (and I assume the rest of the country...though we are trendsetters here, so don't be jealous if you have to wait another few weeks to buy your shoddily made $50 sexy witch costume, ladies (or super scary (i.e. not at all frightening) warlock costume, fellas)). I decided yesterday I'll be going somewhere this All Hallows Eve as Joan Holloway, Mad Men's resident bitch goddess.

Bring on the padded bra!

What about you? What will you be this Halloween? (and don't say you are too old for Halloween. That's just boring.)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

State of the Gingers

Round these parts, we are big fans of Jenny Lewis: Indie Rock Ginger Queen. Her new album drops (as the kids would say) later this month (Liz already has an advanced copy. Her friends are so much cooler than mine), but here's a song we can all enjoy. Check it:

Headlines that you'd think are from The Onion or something but aren't (Vol. I)

Spotted on Yahoo! News: Witchcraft rumor sparks riot at Congo soccer game; 13 killed.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The End of a Not Very Interesting Era

Back in the late 90's, I found myself hanging out with new high school graduates and elementary school kids (long story). Because I was basically regressing 10 years, I also found myself watching MTV's TRL...a lot (I can still do the dance routines to Britney's "Sometimes" and *NSYNC's "Bye, Bye, Bye." Is this something to be proud of? Not really, but hey, let's see you try it, Judgey McJudgeypants). Anywho, news today is MTV will air the final episode of TRL in November. Now, I haven't watched the daily video countdown show seriously since Carson Daly was the host, so I'm not totally invested or anything, but it's still a little sad...especially since the TRL hour was the only time MTV (aka The Hills TV) plays videos anymore (even if they are incredibly short and screamed over most of the time). So, I will mourn just a little...as another part of my childhood dies...or my early 20's anyway. Why do you have to be so factcheckery? Gah!

Quote of the Week

I've been rather uninspired with the blogging lately. (Who knew being unemployed took up so much free time? The only thing I've really accomplished in two weeks is watching Six Feet Under season 1. My review? "Meh.") Well, it's about to get even lazier, people, as I start a new post "series" (read: something I am doing now out of laziness which may never be replicated) of things people have actually said to me. Let's start with this gem from my BFF Annie:

He asked you to yoga?!? In New York, that's like doing it!


Friday, September 12, 2008

At The Movies: Burn After Reading

Anytime I go to see a Coen brother's comedy, I have mixed expectations. I mean, these are the dudes who brought us Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? and Raising Arizona and The Big Lebowski...basically, some of the funniest movies ever made. However, they also made The Ladykillers and Intolerable Cruelty and The Hudsucker Proxy, which all, in a word, suck. Really, their comedies are a mixed bag. Burn After Reading falls somewhere in between...somewhere in the Barton Fink Grey Zone, if you will.

Burn After Reading
is about one big group of morons and their collective misunderstandings. Brad Pitt (as I'm sure you've seen in the previews) plays a gym trainer who tries to make a little money when some government information falls into his lap. Francis McDormand plays Pitt's co-worker and cohort in crime, who needs a bit of excitement from life and some cash for a complete physical makeover. John Malkovich is very Malkovich-y as a former CIA man with a bit of a drinking problem. Tilda Swinton shows up as Malkovich's unhappy wife while George Clooney ties all the pieces together, making his patented wide-eyed Clooney face all the while (the face he only seems to make in Coen brother movies). It's difficult to discuss plot points without giving too much away or blabbering on for 3 more paragraphs. Just know, there are misunderstandings aplenty...kinda like when the Chinaman peed on The Dude's rug.

Burn After Reading
isn't bad...or even necessarily disappointing (I laughed most of the way through). I just think with the Coens, so much is expected that anything less than a movie full of quotable lines like, "You two're just dumber'n a bag of hammers" and "You don't f*ck with the Jesus" leaves me wanting. I didn’t like Burn After Reading nearly as much as I hoped I would. Maybe it's just me, though. Why don't you go see it and tell me if I'm wrong?

Besides, all you really need to know is George Clooney and Brad Pitt make out...

Just kidding.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Confessional

Is it weird that I have a favorite Victoria's Secret model?

Hi, Miranda. Hiiii...

It is weird, isn't it? Damn it!

Things I learned while staying home sick

You learn a few things while laying on the couch, burning your only remaining sick day with your third sinus infection of the year. I thought I'd share a few of the most important tidbits I picked up:

HBO won’t let you watch its shows for free on its web site. Come on, Home Box Office, help a sister out! I know you have that whole “premium cable, no commercials” thing going on, but Showtime lets you watch their stuff. I wanna see this new vampire show you’re doing, but I can’t afford your channel. You’re supposed to be nice to me right now, I’m sick!

I won’t be able to run from NASCAR for much longer. I just saw a commercial for that Thomas Kinkade gallery thing, and apparently they’re making NASCAR prints now. I’m still resisting, but I get the feeling it's getting more and more futile.

The clock on my living room wall is really f&cking loud. I went to bed really early last night, so even though my face hurts and I feel like I’m going to vomit, I’m not all that tired. So I’m on my couch, right under this goddamn clock, and it sounds like mice are performing STOMP in the wall next to my head. It ain’t helping, ‘s all I’m saying.

Time Life is still in business. I always thought Time Life stopped making books after it jumped the shark with those ones about the supernatural, but here they are, on my daytime television, hocking a ten-hour DVD set about WWII. Operators are standing by, I'm sure.

They should have cancelled the Price is Right when Bob Barker retired. Drew Carey’s not bad, but let’s be honest – this show needs a vaguely smarmy host with the air of a sophisticated used car salesman like I need anti-biotics. Otherwise it just doesn’t work.

Vaya con Dios.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

At the Movies: Vicky Christina Barcelona

Yesterday, I ventured to the movie theater midday (not having a job totally rules!) to check out Woody Allen's latest film, Vicky Christina Barcelona. VCB follows Rebecca Hall (Vicky) and Scarlett Johansson (Christina) as they spend a summer in, you guessed it, Barcelona, Spain. Vicky is sensible; engaged to a wealthy business man because he is the logical choice. Christina is impulsive, always in and out of love; looking for passion over logic. (What's that you say? This is the premise of many a Jane Austen novel? How astute you are, dear reader.) Add Javier Bardem as a passionate artist, with a tumultuous past, who invites both Vicky and Christina to join him for a weekend away, and Penelope Cruz as Bardem's insane ex-wife, and things get messy.

Cruz, Bardem and ScarJo are all really fantastic, the scenery is gorgeous, and the script is interesting in the New Woody kind of way (it's much more Match Point then, say, Annie Hall). I was disappointed with Rebecca Hall, in a very uneven performance, and some of Woody's choices (like an awkward narrator), but really all you need to know is P. Cruz and ScarJo make out. Maybe I should have lead with that...

Monday, September 8, 2008

It's like the mid-90s never ended

Look, Noel Gallagher of Oasis got pushed off stage by a rogue fan in Toronto!

Signs I'm Getting Old: Vol. 2 (I think)

I watched the MTV VMAs on fast forward last night. My face looked like this the entire time:
I had several questions for myself after watching the show: First, does anyone think Russell Brand, while hilarious in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, is really very funny? I usually get the Brits, but this guy is a big ol' mess. Also, am I cool because I didn't know half of the artists nominated (who they hell is Tokyo Hotel?) or does not knowing them make me lame and out of touch? (I imagine this is how people my age felt when Britney Spears and *Nsync were huge back in the day...totally confused by it all.) And finally, why do I insist on watching the VMAs every year when I know they will be horrible? I need to rethink my priorities.

Friday, September 5, 2008

30 Rock the Vote

When I first read the headline that John McCain picked a woman for his running mate, my first thought was, "Huh. That's interesting." Then I saw a picture of Sarah Palin and my first thought was, "I didn't know Tina Fey was a Republican!"

Seriously, check this out:
Which is which? Who is who? It's all coming apart!!!
I know we're not the first blog to point out the resemblance between Gov. Palin and the unsinkable Liz Lemon, but seriously, isn't that just crazy! And besides, when have things like "timeliness," "newsworthyness" and "of interest" ever had any kind of bearing on this blog? Honestly.

Fall TV Preview: 2008

Better late than never, it's time for the Gingers is the Watchword somewhat annual TV preview!

Gratuitous shot of Josh Jackson to satiate my inner 15 year old? Check.

There's actually not a ton of new shows I'm looking forward to this year, but there are a few of which I am intrigued, yet suspicious. I've admittedly made some dog pics in the past (*cough* Bionic Woman remake *cough*) and I'm sure I will again. But, sight unseen, here's some new shows that have piqued my interest.

Sons of Anarchy - Supposedly like The Sopranos, but with a biker gang. Could be cool. It's on FX, which has gained a reputation for interesting, edgy shows. (Start...ed Sept. 3. Oops, hopefully they'll replay it. It's FX, so they probably will).

Kath & Kim - The commercials for this show starring Selma Blair and Molly Shannon have made me laugh, and apparently it's a remake of a huge hit in Australia. The Aussies have given us Cate Blanchett, Russell Crowe, koala bears and shrimp on the barbie, so I've come to trust their taste. However, off-beat comedy is such a tough thing to pull off, I have my reservations as well. (NBC, Oct. 9)

Fringe - Buzz is kind of bad, but hey: JJ Abrams and Joshua Jackson? I'll at least give it a looksie. (Fox, Sept. 9)

The new 90210 - I have it saved in my DVR. I wasn't even a huge fan of the first go-round of this series, but I have to admit I'm curious. If only to see how Michael from The Wire does. (CW, Tuesdays)

Life on Mars - Strictly on Red's recommendation. (ABC, Oct. 9)

My Own Worst Enemy - As I've mentioned before, I've missed Christian Slater. I have to give his little dual personality spy show here a try. (NBC, Oct. 13).

And, since a lot of my favorite shows are your favorite shows as well, here's when some of them are coming back:

30 Rock (Oct. 30); The Office (Sept. 25); Pushing Daisies (Oct. 1); Heroes (I'm giving it one last shot. Sept. 22); Dirty Sexy Money (It still hasn't reached its potential, but I'm hanging with it to see if it does. Oct. 1); Grey's Anatomy (Shut up. Sept. 28).

Thursday, September 4, 2008

God Help Me!

I kinda really like John Mayer's cover of Tom Petty's Free Fallin'

I am now officially so totally uncool, we need a new word for uncool.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Top 5: Things to Accomplish While Quasi-Unemployed

So, it's happened. The warmongers realized I am too full of sunshine and happiness to contribute to their evil schemes any longer and they've placed me on furlough (basically said, "Here. Take a month or so off work (unpaid) and we'll call you back if we decide to go with a redhead who is taller than all the boys and will always be relegated to the old lady/mother roles and never get to play the female lead with all the good songs." Sorry. I just regressed to my childhood musical days there for a sec). Anyway, so, yeah. I have some free time, people. Here's how I plan to fill it:

1. Finally watch season 1 of Lost - Because I'm not nerdy enough, I must find out what Liz is always blabbing about. Smoke monsters? Hidden hatches? Let the obsession begin!

2. Decide whether or not I want to move to the East Coast - Virginia and South Carolina are my options. What say you, East Coasters? Am I crazy to leave the glory that is San Diego?

3. Perfect my Moose Tracks and peanut butter ice cream recipe - Really, 75% of my time will be spent on this one.

4. Revel in the new season of America's Next Top Model - The new season of model insanity begins tonight. This is my guilty pleasure show and I don't care who knows it. Bring on crazy Tyra!

5. Venture...Outside! - Yes. The time has finally come. Time to leave the comforts of my apartment and go for a walk...or to the beach...or to read in the park nearby. I'm not saying it will be easy, but, bygod, it will be fun! Or probably not. Who knows really?

Really, my days will turn into this:

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

This (mostly) Just In...

After the week of smoking our own pole and a long weekend of laziness, let's get back in the swing of things with these news items which are mostly new and quasi-interesting:

90210: The New Class - The newly revived 90210 premieres tonight on the CW. I have my DVR ready to record the 2 hour premiere, yet I imagine, much like with Gossip Girl last season, I'll watch about 20 minutes, decide I am too old for this crap, and switch over to the Padres game. Yes, I'm still watching Padres games. They've not been mathematically eliminated yet! (or maybe they have. I dunno. Math is hard.)

Facebook: The Movie - Aaron Sorkin, creator of The West Wing and Sports Night, is rumored to be writing a movie about the creation of Facebook. It's a pretty great idea considering there are about a million or so Facebook addicts ready to line up and buy tickets.

Michael Phelps: Funny Dude - Or so we shall see when Phelpsie (he likes me to call him Phelpsie) hosts the season premeire of SNL. As long as there are several skits with him shirtless, all is a-okay with me.

Death of a Voiceover Guy - The voice of about a zillion movie trailers is dead. Movie previews will never be the same.