Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Amazon Obviously Doesn't Know Me At All

I caught up on some of the Fox animation stuff last night once I went to bed, in an effort to clear off some of the clutter on the DVR, then got fished into a movie when I flipped back to normal television. Damn! We're In A Tight Spot! I don't know what it is about O Brother, Where Art Thou? that I can't pass up, but the next thing I know, I've watched half the film and it's pushing 3:30 in the AM before I go to sleep.

I got up an hour later than I intended, basically just in time to hear the door shutting behind the wife, who was off to a late morning meeting. I got up and checked e-mail, then got dressed and gave Macguffin a call to see what he was up to today. I was surprised to catch him up and around, so I offered to come over for lunch and a visit if he was up for it.

I listened to last week's episode of Night Of The Living Podcast while I drove, still trying to catch up on my listening.

Mac and I did a little running around, then headed back to his house to chill out and visit for awhile. I decided to head home late in the afternoon, since I was pretty sure the wife didn't have her customary Tuesday night meeting and wanted to spend the evening with her.

I AM Iron Man!I stopped into Best Buy on the way back into town and picked up the Blu-Ray release of Iron Man, which has been the only thing I knew I wanted to buy these past few weeks, so I was quite happy to be able to come home and give it a re-watch. I headed to the house, checked in with the wife and then settled down to get some work done, as I'm trying to keep to a quasi-schedule with the graphs so that I don't feel like I have to finish one of these overnight if I have bills due.

I worked for an hour and a half, listing to an older Outside The Cinema while I inked in the work thus far, then headed to the bedroom to crack open the new DVD. I really dug the movie, the wife was as amused as I'd expect her to be by it, as she's not a comics fan or anything. She spent part of the time thumbing through the catalogs from today's mail, which actually didn't bother me since I'd seen the film before. Had this been the first watch, I might've been put off, but it didn't matter this time around.

We headed into the den, the wife made herself some noodles for supper and since I wasn't hungry I killed the cooking time by washing a few dishes and making some tea. I grabbed a cereal bar to nibble on as we headed into the den. We chilled out and watched the TiVo'd season premiere of Desperate Housewives, the show that I don't feel as though I can quit, since I originally got the wife hooked on it by saying "Hey, this looks interesting, we should watch it when it premieres..." about 5 years ago. I guess I could just stop watching and let her go on with it without me, but I'd feel weird blowing her off for what used to be one of 'our' shows that we always watched together. I also feel kinda weird about the show in that all of the characters have begun to annoy the shit out of me, especially since they've skipped the timeline forward about 5 years with this season and Lynette's twin boys are teens and look like they've stolen Matt Damon's DNA but none of his charm. I'm somewhat intrigued by the addition of Gale Harold, I've always liked that guy, but it may be too little, too late to make me give a shit about this show anymore.

We called it a night afterward and I headed to the web to check on some items I have on order and get the writing done. I noticed a puzzling discrepancy in Amazon's recommendation system, (something I think I actually got an entire post out of one evening), because awhile back I was looking for information on the new VCI release of a Fred Williamson film called Boss, which is also known by its full title from the 70's Blaxploitation era as Boss Nigger. They Call Him Boss... Based on the interest I'd shown for such a fairly incendiary title, Amazon rushed to give me 'more to explore' and suggested that I might also consider a Popeye The Sailor DVD collection, featuring cartoons from 1938-1940, or a Paul Lynde Halloween Special from 1976, released for the first time on DVD.

The first person who can draw a logical connection from those items to Fred Williamson or Blaxploitation (or hell, even westerns) wins my everlasting gratitude, because I'm at a loss. Amazon seems to think that an interest in a particular DVD equals an interest in ANY DVD they sell.

Be seeing you.

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Monday, September 29, 2008

Luxury, Thy Name Is Hot Water

The wife was up like a shot this morning, I slept in a little bit and then drug myself from bed to try and get my day started, better late than never, right? I turned on the computer and started coffee, trying to get the sleep from my eyes. I finally investigated the wounded ring finger of my right hand, hoping for the best. The swelling was better, though the bruising and reddish irritation may be even worse than yesterday, my finger looks like a battered wife on COPS right now, begging them not to arrest its husband. I could actually make a fist with my right hand, which was a change from yesterday when I had to force the finger to bend even slightly during the afternoon; today I can close it with no problem. I think I'm on the mend.

I drank my coffee and called the plumbers about the water heater, they said they'd get someone out in the afternoon. I spoke to the wife, who was on her way home, so I grabbed a shower and got dressed for the day. I ran the Mother In Law's medicine by to her, then dropped a few things in the mail and picked up lunch for the wife and myself.

We were in mid-meal when the plumbers arrived, so I went and showed them the situation, they had the same tankless water heater they'd installed in the house the last time we had issues of this type (y'know, a few months back. Fuck me...) in their van, so we gave them the go ahead to just replace that mother and get it over with.

I popped in the earbuds while they were doing that and got a good chunk of work done, finishing the first project as well as getting to the halfway point on the second one. I listened to last week's Mail Order Zombie while I worked, then last week's Dead Lantern Splattercast and part of Destroy The Brain. I'm so damned behind on everything, I'm still working on last week's shows for most everything I listen to each week.

Not As Awake As I ExpectedI knocked off after 5:00 with the graphs, joining the wife in the bedroom to watch another of the 6 Films To Keep You Awake, which has proven to be something of a chore to wade through. I'd say that while none of the films have been downright awful, none of them have really blown me away yet either. I'm officially at the halfway point in the set, so perhaps I can get that finished and reviewed later in the week.

Once the film was over, we dove right into the various recorded shows left from last night, which included another intriguing episode of True Blood, which is growing on me and the first episode of Californication for this season. I could've been completely happy if the show had only run for one self-contained season, but the direction they seem to be going is interesting to me if only because the fictional character of Mia is now following me on Twitter, which is all very meta and weird. We moved into the den at this point and watched the new Heroes, which was as interesting/frustrating as I expected it to be, then called it something of an early night, as we were both kinda bushed.

Be seeing you.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Cinematic Sunday Fifty-Six (Or: 1,000 Wasted Nights)

Seriously, this marks the 1,000th post I've made to this timesink that's all but enveloped my life, I hope I'm very proud of myself.

The Big One Oh Oh Oh, Bitches!I spent most of the day fretting over the damned welt that won't go away on my right ring finger, the thing is still swollen and reddish, though the discoloration may stem from my constant poking and squeezing at it yesterday, convinced there was some head/bite point that could be popped on it to relieve the swelling and pressure. I think all I was successful in doing was basically bruising the area, I honestly don't think it'd be as reddish had I not messed with it all afternoon. I applied the old meat tenderizer remedy to it this afternoon, and while it made it slightly less tender to the touch, I fear that it's too little, too late as far as the swelling and discoloration goes, I will probably have this damned quarter sized welt on the side of my finger for a week or so at the rate we're going.

The wife and I wasted the day away watching some TiVo'd re-runs and trying to figure out how to finagle about three hours of simultaneous programming to record properly without having to miss anything this season. Evidently we'll be trying to watch around 9 different programs that air between 7:00 PM and 10:00 PM each Sunday night, spread across 4 different networks, which could make the DVR and TiVo scheduling somewhat tricky.

I finally hopped online to get a bit of writing done before we get into tonight's programming, and maybe get a short jump on tonight's blog post before I'm tied up for several hours.

Trailerwise, here's what grabbed me this week:

I'll start with something I've been hearing about for quite some time now, a Spanish film called Timecrimes. It's directed by Nacho Vigalondo and is about a man who slips back in time and must encounter several versions of himself in order to save his wife. The allusion I get from some of the press is that the person he's fighting throughout the film is different versions of himself, but I can't say for sure. Give it a look, this has gotten great press and has already got the customary American re-make in the works, which should surprise no one.

Next we have the often delayed Valkyrie film, which stars Tom Cruise and is directed by Bryan Singer. The film is about a secret plot by officers within Hitler's own military regime who attempt to assassinate him. Thank Christ they haven't asked Cruise to try for a German accent or anything, I think that makes the film easier to accept. Singer's work has been great in the past, so I'm hoping that this doesn't turn into a big heap of shite by the last reel. It opens in December.

Moving back to things more in the spirit of October, which is just around the corner, we have Splinter, which is directed by Toby Wilkins. It tells the story of a carjacked couple who end up trapped with their tormentors in a remote gas station, menaced by someone or something in the night. This reminds me slightly of Feast, if only because of the unknown nature of the creature or whatever stalking them from outside. Give it a peep, it hits theaters on Halloween Day.

Finally I'll close with the black comedy Just Buried. It's directed by Chaz Thorne and stars Jay Baruchel as a young man who inherits the family mortuary, which is failing miserably until he and the cute mortician played by Rose Byrne begin to drum up some business of their own.

I'm out kids.

Be seeing you.

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

If The House Ever Burns Down, It'll Happen On A Saturday...

I know this in my heart because EVERYTHING that goes wrong in this damned house seems to be on either a Friday or a Saturday.

The wife had some kind of shower (baby? wedding? bridal?) this morning, so she was up early and out of the house by the time I woke up at 10:00. I got up and got the front curtains open, then headed to the office. I checked e-mail and then did some writing, working on several reviews I've been needing to get done.

I noticed that the ring finger of my right hand felt weird, itchy and when I scratched at it, it became increasingly irritated. I was also having some discomfort making a fist due to the swelling, obviously something bit me during the night, but I don't necessarily assume it's one of the numerous mosquitoes that we've had hanging around. I've been bitten by spiders before, and I'm hoping that we don't have one taking up residence in the fucking bed.

I'm writing my little heart out, still favoring the sore finger when I hear a weird 'whooshing' noise through the wall of the office. I've never heard this noise before, so I walk down the hall to the front bedroom, wondering if it's an issue with the air conditioning unit in that room. There's nothing amiss, the air conditioner isn't even on at the time, but the 'whooshing' is definitely closer to this area. My heart sinking, I put on shoes and headed outside to check in the closet that the water heater is in, which supplies hot water to the kitchen, front bedroom, hall bathroom and the complete other side of the house. There's water pouring out from under the fucking door, I open the door and there's water just gushing out of the side of the damned water heater. I try every valve I can find on the numerous hoses and pipes going in and out of the thing, finally locating one on the top that when shut off seems to stop the water gushing out the side, so I leave that off and wait it out for the full pan of water to drain off.

This is so typical, we had the sink plugged up last weekend, now we have this shit going wrong, who knows what next weekend will bring? Fuck me in the home ownership.

I went and grabbed a burger for lunch as I suddenly found myself hungry when I went back inside. The wife got home as I was sitting down to eat, so I told her the bad new about the damned house and showed her the wounded finger, which she maintained hope was just a mosquito bite, nothing worse. I'd cross my fingers for that to be true, but they're kinda tender from the bite whatever took out of me.

Who's The Asshole Who Didn't Bother To Call This One Death Note PART ONE?!?I popped in a flick we have in from those rental throttling pricks at Netfux, the live action version of the Japanese anime series Death Note. I noted with some surprise that it clocked in at just over two hours in length and settled in to see what was up. The flick is pretty interesting, about a college kid who finds the God Of Death's notebook, in which anyone's name can be written, an act which will kill them within forty seconds unless more details are given. He's tracked by a genius detective who wants him found, even though the only people he kills are criminals. I began to get a little nervous when I started getting past the one hour thirty minute mark, and also started to remember something I'd forgotten about the one review I'd heard of the film: it's essentially the first of two segments. Damnation. I've since read that the second half will get a short theatrical release in October, with a DVD to follow, so who knows when I'll see the end of this thing? Bah.

I decided to get some work done afterward, and listened to the reunion show from Pickled Embryo while I worked. It was nice to hear those two together again, it sounds like not much has changed and it was a lot of fun.

Watchoo Lookin' At, Sucker? Jason Wants His Sack Back!The wife got a call from the Mother In Law wanting us to have dinner with her, but I elected to stay home and try to watch something else from those rental throttling pricks at Netfux just so I can get it back in the mail finally. Since I had watched Postal awhile back and didn't totally hate it, I had bumped the very latest Uwe Boll film to the top of the queue. I watched Seed, which is about a serial killer who is executed, then buried alive and returns to kill everyone who was involved in his death. That's it. That's all that fucking happens, and it's alternately uncomfortable (PETA animal cruelty reels near the beginning), somewhat confusing (the timeline isn't all that clear until about 35 minutes into the film) and just downright boring as the guy exacts his revenge and it's all super cruel and mean-spirited, but who cares by this point? Pass, unless you get a big boner off the Hostel films, then you might have a new favorite film.

The wife had returned from dinner by this point and was kind enough to bring me a little something, so I ate that while we watched this week's Lewis Black's Root Of All Evil and Color Splash, just because they have absolutely nothing in common.

We called it a night shortly afterward.

Be seeing you.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

So Much To Write, So Late To Be Doing It...

Jebus, it's so much later than I like to be starting these turkeys, so let's do this song and dance and get the fuck to bed, shall we?

I got up with the alarm at 9:00 this morning, fed the Yorkie and hopped online, poking around for a bit before I was set to go and help Robbb move a television.

I called him at 10:00 to confirm, then dressed and retrieved the newspaper from the driveway and thumbed through it while I waited on him to pick me up. We had breakfast with his boss and another co-worker who was actually buying the television, then picked up a little dolly to help move it and headed out to Robbb's mother's house in the country.

The television was fairly large, but the guys both jumped in and grabbed it, leaving me to just grab the door for them and help steady it as it went in the SUV, things like that, which was fine by me. I didn't wake up this morning dying to throw out my back, after all. The main purpose of Robbb's asking me along was just to keep him company on the drive to his co-worker's house, which is two towns over and takes around an hour to drive for the round trip. The co-worker was in a separate car, so we followed him there, unloaded and then headed back.

Robbb and I grabbed a coffee on the way back ionto town, then he dropped me back at the house. I was surprised to find the house empty, so I put in a call to the wife, guessing that she had taken the Yorkie to visit the Mother In Law. I popped in the earbuds and worked a bit, listening to an older episode of Outside The Cinema and the second episode of The Gentlemen's Guide To Midnight Cinema, which I was happy to find is now available via iTunes. I'm really digging the show, the guys already have a good rapport and easily bounce off one another when reviewing films, I'd recommend giving them a listen if you're into genre film.

The wife eventually came home, we caught up on our days and she chilled in the bed watching some tube while I finished working.

The wife had made plans for us this evening with her friend Brian, and I'd asked if we could include our friend J since we hadn't seen her in forever, so I knew that we had people arriving for dinner at 6:00. I joined the wife in bed and watched this week's DVR'd episode of Fringe, which felt as quasi-contrived as the first two did, more of the same conveniences of the past re-surfacing and allowing the crazy doctor to figure things out. If this is how the entire show is going to be, I don't think I'll be sticking it out, nifty logos be damned.

Our people arrived and we went to dinner at a local steakhouse, visited a bit and had a few drinks while we caught up on things. Afterward we headed back to our house and just hung out. J asked if we were going to watch porn again, since the last time she was over we watched a French flick she'd rented, which turned out to be basically a softcore arthouse film. Bring The Boobs, Bring The Noise I popped in one of the 42nd Street Forever discs; I figured that have enough boobs to be interesting, but still be easily ignored if we wanted to just shoot the shit and talk.

Our guests split shortly before 10:00, so the wife and I watched The Soup off the old TiVo before calling it a night ourselves.

I made myself a Maker's Mark and soda. then headed to the web to get this done for the day. I also need to do some reviews, though I don't know if I'm going to get to them this evening since I'm getting such a late start on this.

Be seeing you.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

I Am A Creature Who Likes His Routine...

I slept late this morning after being up a little late reading the first volume of the Creepy Archives, something I picked up since Barnes & Noble sends out coupons somewhat regularly and I figured what the hell, there's no way I'll ever read this stuff otherwise. Does What It Says On The Tin The art is wonderful, though some of the stories are pretty obvious or silly, but whatever, I think the art was always the main attraction that these magazines had when they first came out. Seeing the art reproduced in the original printed size on high quality paper, it makes me think about a fat little 13 year old nerd me, trying desperately to copy Bernie Wrightson linework from the Pacific Comics reprints of his work with cheap rollerball pens purchased from the local grocery store.

Ah, youth. Bark At The Moon I'd actually like to try and track down a hardcover of Cycle Of The Werewolf one day, as I know it exists and I've always loved Wrightson's illustrations in that book. I remember checking it out of the library many times as a kid, studying the art and wondering how it was done. In a related note, I picked up the collected edition of the very first Swamp Thing issues awhile back and really enjoyed those, it was very nostalgic.

End digression.

The wife had a luncheon she was hosting at the Mother In Law's house at 11:00, but she wanted to be there early to help with the set-up and was out of the house ny 10:00. I got up late and hopped online to see what was happening in the real world. Feeling kinda peckish, I decided to go and run around before trying to get some work done in the afternoon.

I went and grabbed a coffee at Starbuck's and then picked up some chicken for my lunch. I also cursed myself at going to the same chicken place that always has the shittiest service in town, but I always seem to forget this until I'm dealing with the lousy drive-thru service again.

I headed home and ate, then popped in the earbuds and listened to last week's Dead Lantern Splattercast and Cinema Diabolica while I got a really good chunk of work done over the afternoon. The wife came home somewhere in the late afternoon as the Yorkie was barking at the lawn guys doing their thing.

I knocked off with the graphs around 5:00 and the wife and I chilled in the bedroom and watched a couple things I have to review for those nice people over at Pop Syndicate, including a Korean action flick called No Blood No Tears and the Blu-Ray release of Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles. Man, I Could Use Some Fuggin' Protoculture Ovah Heah! The action flick was decent, a story about two put-upon women who eventually fight back and try to run a scam on the lowlife guys they're forced to deal with on a daily basis. The Robotech thing was also okay, though the CGI and cel animation looked strikingly different from one another, which may have been exacerbated by the hi-def presentation. Bottom line, I felt like they gave you way too much information in too short of a time, hell I was at least familiar with the original Robotech series and I was still lost at several turns just because they kept referencing stuff I had never heard of.

We moved to the den and watched the season premiere's of My Name Is Earl and The Office, both of which were a lot of fun. I made some food somewhere in there for our supper, and then we called it a night around 10:00.

Oh, and before I forget for a few more days, I wanted to mention that there's a few new things up over at the old Big Suck Loser, so check that out if you care to, it's what all the cool readers are doing this fall.

Be seeing you.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Neverending Lunch Errand

We had to put the maid off last week since we were in Dallas, so the wife wasn't sure if she would wait another two weeks to come back, or just show up today. Since it would be too easy to just call her and ask, and since we'd obviously rather just be surprised, we just waited things out. The doorbell rang at 9:30 this morning, shortly after the alarm had gone off and we were still laying in bed, so the wife got up and let her in.

I got up and started coffee, said hi to the maid and her young daughter, who had accompanied her to work. I turned on some cartoons for her and left her watching that in the den while I hopped online and checked e-mail.

I had tentative plans to have lunch with my friend B, so I gave her a call and left her a voicemail. I then began to wonder if she could check her phone while at work, so I decided to just drop by there and see what was up. I dressed and left the wife doing her own interweb routine to go and have lunch, then pick up the Mother In Law's prescriptions as a favor to the wife.

I was surprised to find out that B was already at lunch when I went into Barnes & Noble, but since our plans were tenuous at best I figured what the hell and went on my merry way, purchasing a book I'd run across there last week. It's called Zombie CSU: The Forensics Of The Living Dead and looks to be pretty interesting, Stefan over at Pop Syndicate reviews it pretty favorably in the link above, so I figured what the hell.

I hit Robbb's place of business to buy replacement solution for the Braun shaver so that it can clean itself after every few uses and remain 'like new' like the box promises. He and I chatted a bit and he asked me about lunch, so I agreed to go and kill 30 minutes or so at Best Buy until he could shake loose from work. I made the rounds there and found nothing I wanted to pick up, just some magenta ink for the wife because the printer was being a whiny bitch about it. I still hadn't heard from Robbb, so I went down the Loop and popped into Big Lots to check out their cheap movie selection, picking up a few more of the $3 flicks they seem to be getting in even more of lately. I bought the wife a cheap copy of The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane, as I recall that she really enjoyed it when we watched it a year or so ago, and Valley Girl just for the hell of it, since Nicholas Cage doesn't appear to have it in him to give a quirky or interesting performance anymore, at least I can re-live his hey-day of the 80's.

I decided to run by and pick up the MIL's prescriptions to kill a little more time only to find out that they weren't there, the doctor hadn't called them in. This was kinda annoying since the wife spoke to him yesterday morning about refilling them. I called and let her know that she needed to call him again, then headed to the restaurant I'd arranged to meet Robbb at.

We ate and caught up, kinda re-hashing the annoyance I'd felt over the art festival I'd invited him to earlier in the month and smoothing that over. The wife called late in the meal and said that the medicine was for real, no fooling ready to be picked up, so I did that on the way home.

I was walking in the house with my purchases, the prescriptions and a drink from the restaurant all somewhat precariously perched in my hands when I managed to drop the full glass of tea on the floor, where the Styrofoam cup burst like a balloon. I cursed a blue streak and threw the ruined cup in the sink, then grabbed towels and mopped up the mess. I then apologized to the wife and a woman from one of her non-profits, who was over discussing some sort of drama they're having at the organization. I don't know if she found "I'm genuinely sorry for saying 'fuck' about 19 times just now." to be a very sincere apology, but at least she has a weird story to tell people about me.

Leaving them to hash out whatever they were talking about, I checked e-mail and then decided to go get a coffee to replace my lost beverage. I asked the wife if she'd get the MIL's pills together, so I could drop them off for her on the way, and then took the Yorkie for the drive.

I grabbed my tasty beverage, then dropped off the pills, returning to the car to find the Yorkie excitedly lapping at the whipped cream off my Iced White Mocha through the little dome lids' straw hole. I'd hoped that she'd be curious enough about what I was doing while I left her in the car that she wouldn't notice the drink, but fuck me for hoping anything, am I right?

I banished her to the passenger seat for the short ride home, where I planned to relax with the wife for a bit now that ll the errands and running around was finished in the late afternoon. No relaxation was in the cards, as I managed to drop a crystal letter opener while going through the mail, which glanced off the countertop and then shattered on the floor. I cleaned it up and told the wife that if I dropped anything else today that I was going to fucking kill myself, so just be prepared. I really liked that letter opener, it was cheesy as hell (a seahorse-shaped handle?) and who needs one made of crystal for God's sake, but it was a wedding gift that I actually used every day, unlike all the china collecting dust in the china closet.

The wife had a meeting set to happen here at the house at 7:00, so she and I watched some television for about an hour and change beforehand, then I headed to the bedroom to finish a movie I'd started last night. I Sleep With My Wife, But I Live With My Partners. I've been trying to catch the odd Sidney Lumet film when they turn up on cable recently, as I've only seen a few, but was pretty blown away by Before The Devil Knows You're Dead, especially after I realized that the man doing the fairly edgy, stylistic directing is well into his 80's. I watched the rest of Prince Of The City this evening, which I'd never seen before. I really enjoyed Lumet's no-nonsense way of introducing characters using their identification briefly flash carded onscreen and then away we go into the next scene. I thought Treat Williams might've chewed the scenery a little much, it gets a little cartoonish at times with how stressed out he's supposed to be, but I've obviously never been in the situation, so who knows how people react. Jerry Orbach on the other hand is the bomb, cool as a cucumber throughout, especially when they try to put the screws to his character about any type of possible misconduct. I know I've seen Network on cable recently, I just need to try and set the DVR to grab it, and maybe a re-watch of Dog Day Afternoon as well, since I've not seen it in years.

While on the IMDB this evening looking at Lumet's filmography (he's got something in pre-production for next year!) I ran across this weird ad pictured here, which I don't think I really understand. Whoops, We Saw A Movie And Got Stuck With This Lousy Kid? Do a lot of people spend time out at the theater when they should be at home taking their birth control? Are people fucking in theaters so much that they need to remember the morning after pill? What's the connection between popcorn, soda and not having kids? Keeping the theater quiet for someone like me, who probably hates you and your unplanned children? I want theories, and I want them now!

We wrapped our evening with a new Ghost Hunters that saw them investigating an abandoned train station in Buffalo, New York, it was pretty interesting, spooky voices, ghostly interaction, all the things that make that show worth checking out.

I'm out.

Be seeing you.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I Need A New Shtick...

I slept in later than I would've liked today, then got up and checked the interweb for activity before deciding to hit the local books, music and video emporium to sell a few DVD's and see if there was anything used or cheap that I fancied. I'm speaking of course about other DVD's, so get your mind out of the gutter at the old 'used and cheap' line, it won't wash here, ya filthy degenerates. I ended up picking up the recent re-release of Night Of The Living Dead for a little over $10 brand new, which I was happy about, having almost paid $15 for it a few weeks back, but talking myself out of it.

The wife called while I was browsing, so I met her for lunch at the Thai place, as it was in the middle ground for both of us. It was after the lunch rush by this time, so it was pretty empty and we could actually hear ourselves when we talked.

I had tentative plans to go and visit Macguffin this afternoon or evening, but had gotten a couple of e-mails saying that he wasn't sleeping well and might not be up until around 4 or 5 in the afternoon. With this in mind once we got home, I left the wife at the computer fielding her typical glut of e-mail and got down to work on the two projects I have in hand right now.

I listened to this week's episode of Outside The Cinema and finished the prep work on the first project and then did the same for the second one. I called Mac to see what the deal was, got no answer, did a little more work, then called again. I spoke to his son twice, both times getting that he was still crashed out.

I gave up on visiting this evening and decided to just start in on this post to get it out of the way and give myself the late evening off, as I tend to do all my blogging nonsense after 10:00 PM normally. I want to try and relax and watch a couple of movies this evening if at all possible.

I feel as though I'm barely treading water lately with the various irons I have in the fire, as I haven't written a thing for Pop Syndicate in over a week and our own site has been floating listlessly in the water like a dead fish. This latter situation is due to Skincarver's unfortunate experiences with Mother Nature and her boyfriend, Hurricane Ike, who came through the Houston area slapping bitches like his namesake Ike Turner and left them on the move and without electricity or a reliable interweb connection.

And even if he had a reliable interweb connection, why would his first instinct be to work on a site that makes us no money and is read by a scant few?

I'm continuing to take notes on a few films as I watch them, with the intention of reviewing them for the BSL, I just don't know when those reviews will see the light of day at the rate we're going, so more on that as it develops.

I think I've finally slipped into the mode the wife seems to live in, where there's a series of things I want to get done, and I don't want to shirk this or that and in the end a lot of it just falls by the wayside and none of it gets dealt with, which is even more annoying. I also believe that a lot of that stems from the fact that we both have the free time to worry about it instead of the drive to get it done that a 'real' job would give. I think I definitely had a lot more of a work ethic when I was behind the eightball to pay bills each month, now I find myself fucking around most of the month, only really working hard when I know I have bills due. I think that blasé attitude has spilled over into other areas now, and I find myself blowing off writing, etc. that I want to get done, but am content to ignore. Don't get me wrong, I think if I were actually able to finagle a living (shit, any money) out of the writing, I imagine that might turn the tide there as far as the work ethic goes, but this writing for the sheer entertainment or the entertainment of others easily gets back-burnered a lot of the time.

In another odd trend of late, I've recently made a few more contacts with advertising folks who wanted to pass along information about films they're promoting in case I or my readers (all six of you, God bless yer pointy little heads) might be interested in. This is something I'm chalking up to the constant chatter about movies on the site rather than any actual influence on the general public that the writing may have. I was informed a few days ago that the game Dead Space is coming ever closer to the October release date, and that there's a nifty interactive site called No Known Survivors which allows you to explore the world of the game a bit more. As I've said before, the game looks great, but until I see a version for the Wii (the only gaming system we own) I just can't get all that worked up about it. Unless someone mails me an X-Box 360 to play that bitch on, because I've never met a swag I didn't like, y'know?

Talking of swag and other whoring, I also got pointed in the direction of Gelf Magazine, which has a semi-regular column called The Blurbs that I found quite amusing and alarming at the same time. It goes into great detail to examine the enormous divide found between an actual review and what gets quoted out of context for a film's poster or DVD box. This is something we've always known has happened, but some of the examples chosen for the article featuring Burn After Reading (among others) are pretty hard to believe.

The wife had an evening meeting that she attended while I was goofing around online and was kind enough to bring home burgers for supper. She and I promptly got into a stupid spat that lasted most of the evening, even staying alive around the 45 minute period I spent on the phone with Macguffin when he called me back. It was finally settled around 9:30 or so, and since we'd successfully made up she settled into bed to go over some minutes from one of her meetings and I headed to the office to finish this turkey off and crash myself.

PS: Nothing was really accomplished today, which is in keeping with my lackluster streak of late.

Piss on it all.

Be seeing you.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Six Days From Now...

I'll have wasted an hour or more of my day in writing a total of 1,000 posts on this here site. You bring the champagne, I'll bring the boring daily minutiae, 'k?

The wife and I got up this morning with the alarm at 9:00, she called the plumbers about the sink, they said something about having to save a princess first, but that they'd call after lunch. I checked e-mail while the wife grabbed a shower. I showered and shaved, then we headed across town to drop off the Maxima and get the new side mirror installed.

I have to comment bitterly about that whole situation again, if only because our local newspaper seems to run at least one letter every Sunday in the 'letters to the editor' section from someone thanking a local for their kindness. On one hand it's nice to know that not everyone out there is a prick; on the other hand I find it to be a cloying, self-congratulatory wank about what a great community we live in. I've debated more than once about sending in my own story, about a kind Midlander who was sweet enough to knock the side mirror the fuck off my car, and then flee the scene after leaving someone else's business card on the car to appear conscientious.

Y'know, just to remind people that it's not all flowers and puppies here in our small town. Some of the people parking next to you are right cunts, and they should be beaten vigorously about the head and shoulders with a ball peen hammer for their offenses and then crucified in the mall parking lot, because that'd draw more business than that stupid fucking fair they run each fall.

We left the car and went to have some lunch, then stopped into Target to kill some time, picking up a few odds and ends. Their Halloween section is in full swing (and not even into October yet, I don't know what they'll have left at this rate!), so I grabbed a little set of cheap shot glasses and some metal skull place-card holders, y'know, for our next fancy dress Halloween party. The Nissan place called about the car, so we went and picked it up, I sent the wife home, as lunch had left her feeling a little iffy.

I hit Barnes & Noble, got a coffee and poked around a little bit, then mailed some stuff at the post office and dropped off the Mother In Law's medication before heading home.

I puttered around the kitchen a bit, cleaning and sorting some junk mail and bills from our time out of town, then got the call from the plumbers. They came and went pretty quickly, snaked the drain and were out of here in less than 30 minutes, so that's cool, no major problems there.

I worked a little bit on the next set of projects, listened to last week's Outside The Cinema while doing so. I'm way behind on my podcast listening, this happens every time we go out of town, the iPod bulges with new stuff to listen to, and I have no idea when I'll get to all of it.

Paddy Brings The Crazy As Well As The Funny!I watched A Room For Romeo Brass in the early evening, something that'd been on the TiVo for MONTHS and needed to be viewed at long last. Another winner from Shane Meadows (actually an older film of his, but new to me), it tells the tale of a couple of young boys, say 12-13 or so, and how their lives are effected when they meet and are befriended by a loner weirdo type twice their age, played in full creepazoid mode by Paddy Considine. I knew I was already predisposed to liking this, as Meadows has never done me wrong (nor has Considine, now that I think on it), and the film didn't disappoint at all. It managed to balance humorous moments very well with an air of menace and discomfort as the boys form a strange friendship with the erratic crazy guy.

Tonight was the return of Heroes, so the wife and I dug into that after the TiVo had sufficient time to record to the point that we could skim through the commercials. The series reminds me a lot of the feelings I have towards horror film, in that there's a lot of elements that get repeated, but if it's done well I don't really mind it per se, but I just wish they'd do something and surprise me every now and then. The show itself is fine, but I'd like for them to make an entire season in which they tried other things besides:
Is That You, Christ Figure?
1) Everything hinging on the cheerleader in some way. I mean, is she Jesus or something? Just let the other shoe drop on that one and move on to some other 'pivotal' character, dammit.

2) Every character on the show having a superpower (I mean, I'm waiting for the maids in the background of the Petrelli Mansion to have heat vision or something, EVERYONE is revealed to have a power eventually).

3) Fucking time travel. Stop jerking us around with someone from the future turning up with cryptic messages, or someone from our time learning spooky shit. It's become SOP for the set-up of the new season's story-arc now, let it go.

4)Fucking Sylar. That Eli Roth-looking, caterpillar eyebrow havin' dipshit needs to be killed once and for all, if I have to hear him whinging about being 'special' again, I'll scream. It's like a drinking game, but if you play you'll end up blind or dead.

I do enjoy elements of the show, but it just feels like each season re-uses the same basic plot with little variation, which can make for some frustrating viewing, I'm left waiting for Claire's dad Noah to act like a bad-ass in between twiddling my thumbs through a lot of the other plot. If nothing else, I'd like to see them do something to evolve the characters, but possibly without the constant threat of global extinction looming in the background. Y'know, the character stuff you see in the typical superhero comics this desperately wants to capture the feel of.

And now I'm here on the web, whining like an interweb fanboy, because I'm not one of the special people.

If you're playing along at home, you should drink now.

Be seeing you.

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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Cinematic Sunday Fifty-Five

There's so very little going on today, I could almost skip to the movie trailer bullshit and call it good, but let's dwell briefly on a few things before we go, shall we?

Why Must Everything Go Wrong, One After The Other? Fuck Me In The Life.We slept in until mid-morning, then the wife got up and went to pick up some donuts. I made coffee and poked around online, found out that another friend was out of power due to the whole Ike situation, felt kinda bad for not being more aware of others in my life.

The wife and I watched some television and looked through the newspaper, then I started a flick from those rental throttling pricks at Netfux called The House With Laughing Windows. We got a little ways into that and I decided to pause it and make myself some pasta for a late lunch. The pan I wanted to use was in the damned refrigerator with some leftovers in it, so I dumped those down the disposal and hit the button, noticing that the other sink began to fill with water a little during this process. It receded quickly while I washed the pot and cleared the sink of any excess food, but when I hit the disposal again, the water boiled up again. The basic upshot is that I fought with this fucking sink for a good 30 minutes and saw no change, the damned water (and ground up food, charming, I know...) refuses to leave, just travels back and forth between sinks when the disposal is run. Thoroughly annoyed and depressed by this state of affairs, and not exactly keen to continue dirtying dishes with no sink to really clean them in, I headed out to grab a burger somewhere.

We finished the movie after I returned, and I actually fell asleep on the couch for about an hour, something I rarely do. The wife ran the Mother In Law's medication to her, then fixed herself some supper and we chilled in the master bedroom and watched a few things on the DVR, including this week's episode of Fringe, then the new True Blood and Entourage as they turned up on HBO.

And now here I am, dredging the web to find something interesting to show you people this week as far as trailers go.

Coming out later this year is a film called Fear(S) Of The Dark, a black and white animated piece that features intertwined spooky tales by (I believe) six different artists/directors. The talent behind this includes such notables as Charles Burns and Lorenzo Mattotti, and will see a limited release in late October. Give it a look:

Next we have Synecdoche, New York, the latest film from writer/director Charlie Kaufman. It stars Philip Seymour Hoffman as an aging theater director and co-stars a virtual menagerie of females including Catherine Keener and Samantha Morton to name just a few. Check it:

Finally we close with Dog House, a new film by Jake West, the guy who brought us the splatstick fun of Evil Aliens. The film stars Danny Dyer and Stephen Graham as part of a group of guys on a weekend away to the country that goes bad, as weekends away tend to do in films of this sort.

Be seeing you.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Big Post Full O' Nuthin'

Today was a strange day, in that I feel like I got some things done, while at the same time accomplishing nothing, so let's see how the bullshit breaks down, shall we?

The wife and I both slept in late, around 11:00 this morning, which takes some doing when the Yorkie has a habit of deciding the 9:00 AM is go-time around these parts, announcing it thusly with a tongue in the nostril for each of us. She must've still been pooped from yesterday's trip, because she was sleeping right along with us.

We got up, the wife started piddling around with some laundry and I finished going through the mail, opening a puzzling box that was shipped to me from some marketing firm. I was curious what that was all about, as I've gotten several e-mails from different advertising people in the past few months about different movies and video games, so I was a little concerned that they'd suddenly acquired my physical address as well as my e-mail. A Neat Little Monster This concern was for nothing, I'd simply forgotten that I'd ordered a Shepard Fairey designed Dexter coffee mug before we'd left for Dallas, it had finally arrived in our absence. There's actually a poster available of the same image, I'm somewhat tempted, but the near $10 in shipping made me reconsider, because Goddamn, for that kind of money I'd like Michael C. Hall and a couple of body guards to escort the fucker to my door.

We decided to order some Thai for lunch, so I went and picked that up, dropping off the Mother In Law's medication on the way. Back at the house, the wife and I ate and watched part of the 6 Films To Keep You Awake set, which I've got to review for Pop Syndicate and have been working my way through.

The wife caught a nap afterward and I decided to get out and grab some Starbuck's, just because it sounded good. I took the Yorkie for the brief ride, as well as some of the plastics we'd been saving as part of the new recycling bit I'm trying to do.

A bit of a digression here: While it's nothing I've really talked that much about on the blog, I've been making the effort to separate our soda cans, newspapers/catalogs, and plastic bottles into separate boxes for the past few weeks with the intention of running it all to the recycling bins at the grocery store or the nearby elementary school. I can say that it's quite literally cut our garbage in half, I'm only carrying out a few bags of trash once a week rather than twice, I was stunned when I realized that. I'm not sure what really inspired the change, possibly the realization that I'd been lapse in my 'karma' approach to life of late, and the fact that due to the wife's wealth, my fairly cushy lifestyle is a direct result of the oil industry, something that I know isn't really doing our planet a lot of favors. I figure that the least I can do is sort through a few items in my life to try and feel like I'm less of a problem than I could be. The whole karma angle of just trying to go a little out of my way to do something decent is probably pretty corny to most people, but I could give a fuck, it makes me feel like I'm trying to be a decent person and falls in with my mother's 'bread on the water' feelings from my Christian upbringing. Actually, my dad used to stop and help numerous people when they had car trouble (I don't recall passing a car on the side of the road that he didn't offer to help, now that I think about it) and later in life after he'd passed on, I know that my mom was helped many times with the junker cars she drove by other kind-hearted people. With that in mind, the past few weeks I've been trying to do things I felt would be better for everyone, which has included this new plan around the house and even a few small donations to the few charities that the wife doesn't already volunteer for or give money to.

End soapbox, sorry to get all tree-hugging, Jesus-y on ya, back to the usual prickish movie and minutiae talk...

The Yorkie was happy to take the outing, but happier to get back home. I checked e-mail and ended up chatting on Facebook with one of the hosts of a new podcast called The Gentlemen's Guide To Midnite Cinema. He and another guy are well-known as listeners to several of the podcasts that I dig and have just started their own show, the first episode of which reviews Rolling Thunder, a film I haven't seen in ages. Give them a listen, the show promises to be interesting, yet another genre podcast to add to the rotation that's well worth your time.

The wife and I watched some tube, then I got a hankering for another damned coffee, so I went out again to Starbuck's, on the way giving Skincarver a ring. I'd not heard back from an e-mail I sent him about a week ago, and since he lives in the Houston area, I finally got concerned. I don't always hear from him immediately, due to his having a large family and a full-time job, so I thought nothing of it, but after a week I get concerned. That's the kinda shitty friend I am: I'll be there for ya, a week after the shit hits the fan. Go me.

He confirmed that they were indeed affected by Ike, that right old bastard who vigorously fucked the coast of Texas like a fratboy on Ecstasy. They'd been living like nomads, traveling a bit with the kids to Austin, San Antonio and New Braunfels, trying to wait out the power outages, but are now heading back because his office will be up by Monday. They aren't so sure about the house, which got no damage, but has no electricity at this moment. I was happy that they are doing okay, all things considered, but still feel like an ass for not being more aware of my friend's life.

The wife and I puttered around the house in the late afternoon and eventually ordered in some sandwiches from a deli that delivers, then watched another of the 6 Films... set.

We rounded out the evening with an episode of Color Splash, and then a Venture Brothers re-run just for something completely different.

The wife headed to bed and I played around with re-sizing the pic from her iPhone of Andy Bell, and then throwing it into last Thursday's post at a size that looked decent for the 'shitty camera phone in a dark bar' type of shot that it is. I even went to far as to circle the man in question, as there's somehow like a crowd shot in the pic in spite of the bar being pretty empty at the time.

I'm out.

Be seeing you.

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Friday, September 19, 2008

Dallas Song & Dance, Take Two: Day Four

I'll be attempting to make this quick, but as I've proven time and again, brevity isn't my strong suit, so let's just do this shit, shall we?

I was up later than I intended working on last night's post, because I had started it in the late afternoon, then finished it up several hours later. I publish that mother and immediately see a couple of typos and spacing issues that I wanted to correct. Mysteriously, Blogger only has the first half of the post available to edit. I puzzle over this for a few minutes, trying to get to the 'edit' function from several different avenues, from the 'edit posts' side of things, from the post itself, nothing works. I check the blog, it has indeed published in its entirety like I wanted, but doesn't seem to acknowledge that I wrote more later from the nuts and bolts side of things. This is frustrating as all hell, and I eventually gave up and went to bed, figuring I could fix it in the morning after whatever weird hiccup in Blogger service had the time to correct itself.

I wake up this morning, only to find out that the problem is the same. Everything looks normal online, but I still can't edit the damned post like I want to. I gave up again, figuring it was a cookies issue or something that I could sort out later if I encountered the same problem on our PC at home.

The Mother In Law called the room while we were still lounging about, she was feeling somewhat ill with a stomach issue and was ready to head home soon. She'd already packed (!) and was going to come down to our room to pick up her morning medicine. I started the packing process while the wife checked her e-mail, then the MIL came and went, talking lunch plans in passing.

The wife and I got dressed and our stuff packed up, the Yorkie got excited at the prospect of the trip home and we took our stuff downstairs to meet the MIL and the bellman. He loaded up our stuff and we called for the car and headed downstairs.

The MIL wanted lunch at La Madeleine across the way (y'know, where we went the other day when she was supposed to go with us!), so we headed over there, put Bella on her leash and then I chilled at one of the outside tables while the women went inside and ordered food. Bella was pretty cool, although she did bark at a few people, which is frustrating, because she tends to remain insistent once she takes a dislike to someone, which leads me to not want to try and socialize her, because it's just a pain in the ass to go around with 'that dog' that yaps at people. I meam, I hate people with yappy dogs so I figure they hate the dog and I when Bella acts like a jerk in public.

We ate and people-watched for a bit, then the MIL insisted on going by Northpark Mall to hit the Neiman Marcus (y'know, like we wanted her to do yesterday. See the frustrating trend in my life?), so the wife and I loaded her and the dog back up and drove to Northpark and dropped her off, electing to stay in the car in an effort to keep the Yorkie calm. We ended up being there for almost an hour, watching the people come and go while we waited and bullshitted about the trip and whatnot. The Yorkie did little except drive herself to distraction, shaking and freaking out at the strangers walking by, another thing that frustrates me about her. She's a generally sweet dog, but she gets herself so fucking worked up, it's not worth it to leave the house with her sometimes.

We watched some sort of private shopping routine happening, as a valet rolled a table full of bags out to a stretch Hummer Limo, which was parked and taking up half the front of the store with its enormous girth. I was hoping to at least catch a glimpse of whatever asshole was in the thing, just because it seemed like such an obnoxious thing to be riding in, but to no avail, they loaded it up and split.

The wife finally broke down and went to use the bathroom inside, returning with the MIL, we gave the dog her little downer for the journey, hidden in a bite of chicken from my lunch of a grilled chicken Caesar, then popped her into her carrier, I took the wheel and we booked ass out of town at exactly 2:00PM.

I quite honestly drove like a bat out of hell all the way back, the only cop I encountered was the standard speed trap in Colorado City, where there's always at least one cop sitting outside town just watching people. We were back in town by 6:00PM, making the 5+ hour drive in just a little over four hours. We hit a drive-thru for some dinner, then headed tot he MIL's house to eat.

We enjoyed our dinner, then I pulled the Maxima out of the garage, transferred our luggage from the Lexus, then moved it out of the way and parked the MIL's car back inside. I then unloaded the MIL's stuff and then we headed home to unload and be done for the day.

We unpacked and sorted the pile of mail, then watched TiVo'd episodes of Ghost Hunters and The Soup before calling it a night.

I headed to the web and was pleasantly surprised to find that my Blogger issues were easily sorted by logging into things from the PC, much as I'd suspected. I'm still not sure what the actual issue was, but everything is fixed now, so who gives a shit in the grand scheme of things?

Be seeing you.

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