there is water underground.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Transform and roll out!

So I’ve been completely geeking recently. Saw a preview for the Transformers movie that’s coming out next July… it looks awesome. The best part, however, was at the end of the preview:

Movie screen shows the title Transformers

Audience: “YEEEEAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!”

Movie screen shows a Michael Bay film

Audience: “….boooo!”

Yes, I know he’s the creative genius behind such travesties as Pearl Harbor and Armageddon. But give the guy some credit – he directed The Rock, which is one of the better action films I’ve seen (Ed Harris? Sean Connery? ….and Nicolas Cage, whom I can’t stand but for some reason rules in this movie? Awesome casting and a great score… and some good quotes (“Losers always whine about ‘doing their best.’ Winners go home and fuck the prom queen.”)) and Bad Boys, another good buddy-cop movie.

So throw in some CGI robots, get the real military to do the stunts, get Shia LeBeouf to play Spike, get Jon Voight and John Turturro, and hire the guy who originally voiced Optimus Prime to reprise his role, and I’d say Mr. Bay is off to a good start (my only concern – Bernie Mac?!?!?). Now if he can only get Sam Jackson to voice Jazz and Alan Rickman to voice Megatron (bad guys have to have British accents, right?) we’ve got a sure-fire winner. I hope it gets a big fat ‘R’ rating and the robots swear like sailors (“get these motherfucking decepticons off my motherfucking planet!”) The last movie that I attended the first screening of was The Matrix, and you can bet that I’ll be at the very first screening of this one.

I also have to give props to a recently discovered website which further indulges my geekdom: is a mecca for any child of the 80s and anyone who thinks that Thundercats and NES are better than any of the crap out there today. Make sure you've got plenty of procrastinating time.

Friday, July 28, 2006



Watch this.

This is one of the reasons why I sometimes miss living in Japan. Basically, their TV consists of four types of shows*: News, Cooking shows (think Iron Chef... but they're serious), "dramas" which are basically one-season stories (the same actors will come back the next year and do a drama with completely different characters and storylines; long-running sitcoms like Simpsons or Friends basically don't exist) and - everyone's favorite - game shows. As you might be able to tell, Japanese game shows are a little different than ours... people get hurt. Anyone ever see MXC? That's Most eXtreme Challenge; check out SpikeTV if you have the chance (and look for James Harvey - my cousin - in the credits; he does the graphic design). There was a game show in Japan in the 90s called Takeshi's Castle... MXC takes those episodes and overdubs them with hysterical, innuendo-laced, ridiculous English. People face physical challenges (not like Double Dare) where they actually will get hurt. In one episode, the contestants had to run full speed at one of four doors. Two doors were made of paper; two were made of wood and were bolted shut. Those who made it through the first set of doors had another four doors to choose from... and then another. It was awesome. Another game show - Challenger on Fire - relied on teamwork. Each team had six members. Five members would have to do some menial task, like assembling mops or taking the lids off of jars, in a certain amount of time. The sixth member would sit in a booth. If the team was unable to accomplish the task in the allotted time, something would fall on the head of the person in the booth. I recall episodes in which the following objects were dropped: cottage cheese. a cat... a real cat. squid (alive and dead). and my favorite, a bowling ball. Granted, they dropped it from an inch or two above her head, but a fucking bowling ball.

So yeah, Japanese game shows rule. None of the gross-out of fear factor, none of the idiocy of wheel of fortune, none of the faux drama of reality shows. Say it right, or get hit in the nuts. That's a sure-fire recipe for success. Just ask Robot Chicken (you gotta wait till the end).

*anime is another animal completely. it's everywhere and it freaks the hell out of me. i saw one once with a character called rape-man. it had tentacles. yuck.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Funny, ha-ha

I started the day out by putting my underwear on backwards. First time ever! ...even better was when I realized it... just now, around noon. Yippee! Changing & being half-naked* in the office bathroom is a very weird feeling.

* Naked simply means that you don't have any clothes on. Nekkid is naked with a purpose. :-)

Monday, July 24, 2006

Fuck the (Food) Police

I used to think that Evanston, IL had the most ridiculous laws in the country (no tree-climbing, no trick-or-treating). Massachusetts surprised me when I first moved here - you can't buy alcohol on Sundays. That's changed in the three years that i've been here (and no, not because of me). However, the city of Chicago has recently outlawed foie gras.

I don't even like foie gras, but what the fuck? Did I miss something? Since when have city aldermen given two cents about people's eating preferences? When did education, health care, and crime prevention give way to regulations about a "delicacy" that maybe a thousand people eat in a year? First of all, McDonalds has basically taken over the planet, with BK and Wendy's providing the necessary competition. Not exactly health food, but cities seem to have no problem with sticking McD next to gyms, in airports, and (my favorite) in hospitals. You want a healthy city? Get rid of the fast food, and people will be forced to find alternatives, and if those alternatives are healthy and cheap (that's also the responsibility of the city and of entrepreneurs, but it can happen) then good things might arise. That won't ever happen, but it's nice to dream.

Second of all, the biggest argument is that foie gras is made from geese that have been force-fed to fatten their livers. So fucking what? Honestly, when was the last time you heard of Kobe beef being outlawed? Isn't it 'criminal' to keep dogs in tiny NYC apartments? The slaughterhouses that make the chicken and beef products aren't exactly places kids go to on field trips. The geese are going to be killed anyway, so why not let them die fat? And speaking of fat, is it now the responsibility of city councilpeople to regulate trans fats (foie gras has lots)? I've never seen the Chicago city council, but I bet that most of 'em are fat white men who couldn't run six blocks if their lives depended on it. Buncha' hypocrites. Yes, i'd like to see more regulations on how food is prepared and information disseminated to the public, but that should come from the FDA and be nationwide and people should have the right to choose to eat healthy. Now, if it were illegal to force-feed the geese this way (which admittedly sounds disgusting), then fine... but ban the practice nationwide and make these rich people get their foie gras from skinny geese. I don't want to have to drive to Winnetka for some goose liver simply because it's illegal on Michigan Avenue. Again, i'm not a fan of foie gras (nor do I live in Chicago), i'm just making a point.

Finally, don't these people have anything better to do? What's next, a ban on sushi because the fish isn't cooked properly? A ban on iPods that have Yanni? How 'bout focusing some attention on the crime around Hyde Park, where UC students feel unsafe at night? How 'bout enforcing some limits on water pollution? Finally, how 'bout some oversight of how the time and money of the city council is spent? Grr.