Rose Parade

Rose Parade has moved: see link in post below

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Out with the old, in with the new

Tomorrow is the first day of the new year and one of the nice things about January 1st is that it represents an almost universally recognized chance for a new beginning. It's like the start of a sports season, for one brief, beautiful moment everything gets set back to zero and everyone gets a fresh start before reality intrudes. I can really use a fresh start, more accurately I need to make some changes and January 1st is an obvious starting point. Also, since I'm putting it out here in writing I feel like that will make me more accountable. That's the one big change from previous years and their failed resolutions. One of my biggest faults can be summed up in one word: Procrastination. Procrastinators of the world I am your queen, it's that bad. I am all about the instant gratification, consequences be damned (or at least dealt with at a later date). This is really the root problem leading to most of my resolutions, the idea that I can always do ________ tomorrow. I can write tomorrow, I can start eating healthier tomorrow, I can hike Runyon Canyon tomorrow. But tomorrow becomes today and nothing gets done and then it's another year down the drain with nothing to show for it. This is a recording. So...(deep breath)...here are the official resolutions, things that I will address and adhere to starting January 1st (please please please): Diet: By diet I mean overall healthy, happy eating habits, as opposed to a specific, restrictive diet plan. I've done them and they don't work for me. Having said that, I need to drop some serious weight. Basically, I eat too much crap and not enough healthy stuff. I frequently eat for all the wrong reasons - I'm bored, I'm depressed, I'm fat, my apartment is too small, the Taco Bell commercial made me hungry for yummy greasy Mexican food, I hate spending the bulk of my life cooped up in an office doing non-creative work and therefore I deserve a treat or two or twenty. The list goes on. I've always been fortunate to be in good health, so far no major illnesses or injuries. But I know that as I get older I'm not going to be able to get away with not taking care of myself. Plus the weight just keeps creeping up and that's not a good thing, both in regards to health and the beating being heavy has inflicted on my self-esteem. If I would just eat decently the weight will come off slowly but surely and naturally and I would be a happy, healthy camper. The adjustments: No fast food (don't worry Liz, I'm not including Baja on that list, not at those prices anyway), no "junk" food (chips, sweets, non-nutritional crap like that). I will eat normal, healthy meals at normal times: breakfast, lunch and dinner. Snacks will be healthy items like the nice, juicy seedless red grapes I got at Bristol Farms the other day, yogurt, etc. I'll keep them handy at work so that I'm not tempted by muffins or bagels or anything else laying around the kitchen. And after ringing in the New Year with champagne, no alcohol. I like wine and unfortunately that doesn't help with the weight loss thing. Maybe for special occassions, but not on a regular basis. Plus, I need to drink more water anyway. The diet soft drinks, however, are staying for the time being. Also, the whole portion control thing must kick in. I also need to get some exercise. Any exercise at all would be an improvement. I sit at a desk all day, then come home and sit in front of the computer or TV all evening. I don't like working out, it's repetitive and boring and therefore isn't going to happen. I live just around the corner from Runyon Canyon and there's no reason I can't get off my ass and go hiking up there at least a few times per week. Except of course being lazy as hell. It's a gorgeous hike and can be done inside of an hour. It also wouldn't kill me to bust out the Ab Roller I got for free years ago and which has spent most of its lifetime stashed in the deepest, darkest recesses of my walk-in closet. Attitude: I am sorely in need of an attitude adjustment. I let every little thing get to me and sabotage my goals. I am so self-defeating. It's lazy and self-indulgent and I am way too good at feeling sorry for myself. I like to think that Wednesday was a sign of things to come, but I can't help but worrying that the first PMS episode of the year will seriously rain on this parade. But I'm gonna try. I refuse to apologize for being hyper-sensitive, it's just who I am, but I don't want it to screw me either. I think I just need to be more pro-active about keeping an awareness of the positive aspects of my life rather than focusing on what I feel like I'm missing. Writing: To put it bluntly, stop talking about it and do it. It's my love, it's something I enjoy doing and it's something I like to think I'm good at. So why do I neglect it? Because I'm a lazy, queen procrastinator, mainly. I have two half-completed feature scripts (one of which is practically a first draft) and no shortage of ideas. The two features need to be finished along with a couple of short scripts and short stories that I started but never finished. Plus, I've been wanting to write a 1-hour drama spec script. In order to do all of this I need to write on a regular - meaning daily - basis. I have fantastic training - despite having totally half-assed the program, I learned tons from attending Writers Boot Camp, IMO the best screenwriting program around. WBC's slogan is "The Secret to Writing... is Writing". It's as true as it is obvious. Reading: This may seem a bit out of place, not to mention unimportant, but it's something I really want to address. I used to read constantly, I could kill of huge chunks of a day armed with nothing more than a book. Even as a kid I read anything I could get my hands on. Then I bought my first computer and got on the internet and my reading time quickly dwindled to close to nothing. That hasn't stopped me from buying books, but they're not getting read, at least not thoroughly. That needs to change. I'm a fast reader, so I don't think it's unreasonable to go for one book a week. At the very least. Wow, I hope I don't regret posting all of this. Okay, I'm done. Bring on 2006!

Kids these days redux: Save Farris

Gotta love this kid. Talk about your basic overachiever. I don't one bit begrudge him the book and movie offers that he'll be bombarded with. That is one serious adventure. Also look forward to his journalism career. You certainly can't say he isn't sincere. Seriously, I'm just glad he survived his excellent adventure. Also, saw his mom on a newschannel today and she kicked all kinds of "WTF?" ass. She's as boggled as the rest of us, with the added angst of it being her kid. It's gotta be tough, being a parent today, especially when they send you emails cheerfully announcing their plans to head for Baghdad, don't worry and send money. Kid's gonna get equal parts hugs and kisses and serious bitchslaps when he gets home. As he should, little devil. Finally, someone who deserves his fame! There is hope for 2005 yet!

Friday, December 30, 2005

When the Saints go marching home

I guess this means the Saints won't be relocating to Los Angeles. Probably just as well. I'm sure New Orleans wants them back and according to my dad historically they're just a terrible team. He went so far as to say an expansion team would be better. Ouch.

Cute O.D.

The name says it all. Newly bookmarked and linked. This site was very popular in the office during the slow holiday week.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Unexpected holiday bonus

Coolest boss in the world not only cut me loose early again today, but also told me not to bother showing up tomorrow. It's going to be dead and hardly anyone will be around, and the few who are present will be released early anyway. I love working for nice people. So as I laze around killing off what's left of this Thursday afternoon, here are a few headlines that grabbed my attention, for reasons good and bad: South Park's still got it. Sure, it may have been tasteless, but it's South Park people, what do you expect? Also, scroll down to the bottom of that page and check out the advertisers (heh). Gotta say, one thing I've always loved about these guys is that they're equal opportunity offenders. No one is safe. From lottery winner to butt of a joke in just minutes: Tivo practical joke. I wouldn't blame the guy who got pranked if he failed to see the humor in it. He's sorry. There, all better. What a tool. My favorite part of the article, this quote about his accomplice being armed (Brancato claims he didn't know the guy was packing): "If I would have known, I wouldn't have allowed him in my car," Brancato said. "Imagine, we get pulled over and I get caught with an armed felon in my car. Since I've been in the movies, it would have instantly drawn attention." Dude, no it wouldn't have. You finally got famous only because a good man got killed thanks to your stupidity. Now get over yourself, everyone else has. Seriously, I feel sorry as hell for the people of Texas and Oklahoma. We just couldn't get through the last week of the year without another natural disaster. What a year. Looks like the Red Cross will be getting more of my money. Kids these days.

Don't rain on our parade!

According to the weather report on My Yahoo, Pasadena and Los Angeles are due for showers on January 2, the day of the Rose Parade. In fact, supposedly we're going to have rain all weekend until it clears up on Tuesday. If it rains Monday, it will be only the 10th time this has happened in the parade's 117 years. With that in mind it wouldn't surprise me at all if the parade defies the forecast and we have our usual gorgeous parade weather. Here's hoping.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Why the hell was I in such a great mood today?

It wasn't getting out of work early - I shouldn't have been there in the first place. I have the great fortune to work for what is probably the only entertainment industry company that doesn't go on hiatus for at least the week between Christmas and New Years. Even my usual, generally pissy attitude went on hiatus today. And furthermore, apparently it showed. A co-worker asked me if I had a hot date or something, because apparently I looked way better than usual (not that that would be hard to do). I chalked it up to being sad proof of the Hollywood stereotype that letting the hair down and going from glasses to contacts means going from mousy librarian type to hot stuff (or as close to hot stuff as I'm gonna get, which isn't really that close, unless you like big girls. But still, someone noticed...) Then I went to lunch and went shopping because I was just in the mood to buy pretty happy things. Which I did. I bought pretty shopping lists with a pretty kitty on the front and a magnet on the back. I bought a 3-pack of pretty notepads with elaborate Mary Engelbreit cutout designs and words of wisdom on the covers ("Why not go out on a limb? That's where the fruit is", "Happiness must be grown in one's own garden", "Don't do whatever you like, like whatever you do") and a cute journal with a chocolate bon bon on the cover. I also bought a pretty hatbox giftset that came with a journal and notecards and photo album and phone book that I have absolutely no use for. But I'm a sucker for hatboxes. In fact, the lovely Wilma was packed off to her final destination in a pretty hatbox I had lying around that was the perfect size to curl her up in. And as I type this, I realize that on a normal (non-shiny, non-happy day) I would still be at the office, watching the clock as it made its agonizingly slow march toward the magic 6pm mark. So what happened today? I have no idea. Yesterday at lunch, Liz and I talked about New Years resolutions and besides the usual (lose weight, write more, this is a recording...) I really want to not let my easily bruised emotions rule my life and get the better of me. I really want a much-needed attitude adjustment. Maybe it was really kicking in. I don't know, but I do know this: it felt good.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Never on a Sunday

The Rose Parade will adhere to the "Never on a Sunday" rule and will therefore ring in the New Year on Monday, January 2, 2006. As I'm all for tradition and nostalgia (and January 2 serves as the official New Years holiday for us office drone types) I have no problem with this. The Rose Bowl, for reasons that escape me, won't happen until Wednesday, January 4, 2006. Go here for all things Tournament of Roses Parade. And then some.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Baby's first meme

Because I can always use a reminder that I'm still pretty much a rank amateur when it comes to this blogging thing, I decided to tackle my first meme. From L.A. Blogger The Mad Professah Lectures, a Meme of Four: Four jobs you’ve had in your life: McDonalds counter help (first job), Customer Service Rep at an insurance agency, programming assistant at a small foreign language TV station, assistant to a Sr. VP and whoever else sets up office near my desk (and not, unfortunately, horse trainer or writer) Four movies you could watch over and over: All About Eve, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, The Thin Man, A Christmas Story Four places you’ve lived: Pasadena, CA; San Dimas, CA; Playa del Rey, CA; Des Plaines, IL Four TV shows you love to watch: South Park, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, City Confidential, Break the Ice (L.A. Kings pre-game show) Four places you’ve been on vacation: Hawaii, Colorado, Old Town Auburn, The Donner Party campsite Four websites you visit daily: L.A. Blogs, TV Tattle, Let's Go Kings Fan Page (during the season), Yahoo. Four of your favorite foods: Chocolate, steak, lobster, guacamole Four places you’d rather be: A farm in Vermont, a European countryside (English, French, Italian, I'm not picky), New York City, a deserted beach

Words of wisdom and comfort

My uncle's service on Friday was a low-key but very nice affair, just as he would have wanted. A couple of his friends got up and spoke fondly of him and we all got a laugh when the pastor told the story of how Bob complained that the worst part of dying was that he was going to miss the final season of "The Sopranos". That's totally something he would say. The aforemetioned gentleman who conducted the service, Pastor George Wayer, also conducted my grandmother's service a few years ago. He is a very kind, reassuring man and I was glad to see him again. I would want him to do my service. As part of the service he read the following poem that my mom and I liked so much we asked for copies. He didn't know who the author was and when I googled it all I could find was "Author Unknown". If you know who wrote it, please let me know. I would love to give credit where credit is due. It was really perfect for the occassion. Miss Me, But Let Me Go When I come to the end of the road, And the sun has set on me, I want no rites in a gloom filled room. Miss me a little - but not too long, And not with your head bowed low. Remember the love we once shared; Miss me - but let me go. For this is a journey we all must take, And each must go alone. It's all part of the Master's plan. A step on the road to home, When you are lonely and sick at heart, Go to the friends we know, And bury your sorrows In doing good deeds... Miss me - but let me go.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Grove: A love/hate relationship

I love the Grove. At least I try really hard to love it and more importantly patronize it. It's beautiful, has great shops and is home to the historic Farmers Market (meet me at Third and Fairfax!). And it makes Hollywood & Highland look like it was designed by idiots, which it probably was. Sad but true. And Hollywood & Highland doesn't have a fountain or a trolley. But as much as I love the Grove, I hate parking there. This is Los Angeles, therefore I can't shop if I can't park. The thing about the much inferior Hollywood & Highland is that I don't have to deal with parking, I can walk there from both home and office. So as much as I love the Grove, we don't see much of each other. Not nearly as much as I'd like. Oh how I would love to give the Grove more of my paltry, hard-earned cash. But the Grove makes it so difficult, what with it's gridlocked location and freaky parking situation that refuses to show me the love. I've approached the Grove from the parking structure off Beverly and from Fairfax in front of Cost Plus. Both suck on a normal, regular weekend. During the holidays? You have to be a world-class masochist to even think about going there. That's the thing about L.A. So much cool stuff, so much traffic and gridlock and crowds and did I mention the traffic? It reminds me of Indy's line from Raiders: "It's not the years, it's the mileage". In L.A., it's not the distance, it's the traffic. And the parking.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

And to complete the Jeremy Roenick hat trick of drama, I give you...

Wow, someone needs to get over himself

Red, white and blue...and old?

Team USA roster announced. Not really sure how to feel about this. Excited isn't doing it.

Kings (20-13-1, 41 pts) at Vancouver Canucks (20-9-3, 43 pts)

Although the records are nearly identical, Vancouver has been almost unbeatable at home (13-1-1 in their own building). If we win this game it would be huge. Since Van is in the same timezone as us, I didn't realize the game would start early. So by the time I tuned in around 7:30 it was well into the first period and the Kings had just scored to make it 2-1. End of the period we're tied at 2-2. I don't know if I should be more concerned that Vancouver jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first at home or more delighted that we came back to tie it up. Roenick has a goal and an assist, like he's trying to prove something, like he's still got it. Too bad we can't leave him off the Team USA roster more often. Garon is in goal. I haven't seen it announced officially anywhere, but apparently the job is now his to lose. Game on - the second period has started. The Canucks score to go up 3-2 and I have a question: isn't "Canuck" supposed to be a derogatory term? And if that's the case, why is there a hockey team called the Canucks? I've always wondered about that. Also, to make matters worse, we just took a penalty. No further scoring, but that horrible Carl's Jr. milkshake commercial (Googling of which is responsible for what little traffic this sad little blog has seen) assaults my senses. I hope that poor actor invests well, because getting typecast as the guy dirty dancing with a heavy-uddered cow cannot spell "long-term career". I nodded off in the third again (one reason I don't have season seats, how do people go to every game and still get up for work?) but long story short: the shootout is our friend. And Garon is apparently our starter. Good on him. And I cannot believe we whacked the Canucks at home. Only downside - the power play is still a liability. How freaking dangerous would we be if we were at least decent on the PP? Next up, I believe, is Calgary.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Anything for publicity

So first thing this morning, from my vantage point on the 11th floor office in Hollywood, I see this terrifying sight flitting about the skies of my fair town and in addition to a moment of WTF I also decided on the spot no way I'm gonna check that site, nope, not gonna do it. But leave it to Defamer to be on top of this, complete with photograph, which is good because there's no way my attempt at a description could have done it justice. Seriously, it's one for the Fug girls. Funny thing is - and I know this sounds like an "I'm so L.A." cliche - but you see so many weird things in this town that I had no trouble dismissing it immediately. I had already forgotten it when I found Defamer's article. So I guess it isn't working. Also, loved the account by the Defamer reader who sent in the story from Century City.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

R.I.P. my Uncle Bob

After a lifetime of ingesting way too much alcohol, drugs and cigarettes and a good decade plus of seriously deteriorating health, my Uncle Bob died this morning at the age of 59. It was a sad, far cry from his early years as a seriously brainy guy (according to my Dad, who thinks Bob could have gotten into Mensa if he had been so inclined) and a 300 bowler whose perfect game plaque, hanging in my Grandma's house in Arcadia was one of the few but significant constants of my life as part of a fractured and factional family...and one of the few memories Bob happily recalled with surprising crystal clarity when my Dad and I visited him in the convalescent home on Thanksgiving. The things people are God-gifted with and the things they do or don't do with those gifts... Bob was always one of those people (and there are others) who never fail to make me consider and marvel about how much abuse the human body can take and still keep marching along. In his situation I would have willingly clocked out years ago. I'm all about quality and not quantity of life. The day I can't just get up and walk across the room is the day I call it quits. He started painfully gimping across the room years ago. My Dad saw him this morning right after he died and said he hadn't seen him looking so peaceful in at least ten years. He also said it just looked like he was asleep. And as sad as the loss is, sometimes it's just better for someone to just go to sleep...and stay there. Doesn't make it any sadder and doesn't mean it doesn't leave a void, but sometimes the hard thing is the best thing that can happen. When my time comes I hope I just go to sleep. Sleep is just so peaceful, you know?

Kings (18-13-1, 37 pts) at Anaheim Mighty Ducks (14-13-5, 33 pts)

Yeah, I know this is late. We've just had a death in the family, so blogging the game in a timely fashion wasn't at the top of my list of priorities. In fact, initially I forgot to tune in and missed the first period. But it did turn out to be worth talking about, so I didn't want to just blow it off. I was dreading this game. In addition to our general woes and loss to one of the worst teams in the league the other night, Anaheim is on an upswing and if they'd won that would have given them 35 points to our 37. Way too close. So let's see...when I tuned in the Duckies had just scored to tie up the game (we were up 2-0? That alone is impressive, especially since both were PP goals). Eventually the Ducks went up 3-2, but the Kings tied it in the third when Petr Kanko, making his NHL debut "scored" his first goal. Actually the puck bounced off the skate of a Ducks player, but hey, it counts. Sometimes it's a game of skill, sometimes it's a game of luck. And with no scoring in OT, we were off to the shootout races. It turns out Giguere has been weak in shootouts. We'd won the only shootout we'd been involved with, and only won that on a goal the replay showed should have been disallowed. Like I said, sometimes it's a game of luck. However it's still also a game of skill and Giguere's seemed to desert him during the shootout, while Garon stopped the Ducks cold. Final score: Kings 4, Ducks 3. Cool stuff: Anaheim's black unis. Gotta admit, those things are ominous as hell, a far cry from the old silly cartoon design. I've gotta think the Ducks players are thrilled to death with them. I do think the "Anaheim" logo on the front should be a bit bigger, there's just too much empty space there. Cooler stuff: The large, loud contingent of diehard fans from Let's Go Kings who descended upon Arrowhead Pond for their annual Duck Roast and not only got to see a hell of a game but apparently really made their presence felt. That's what a hockey game should be like: it's something to be experienced, not just watched. You should come out of a game feeling like you just went to a party and the Kings haven't exactly been throwing many good ones lately. Glad they came through last night for the faithful who followed them behind the Orange Curtain and from the descriptions in the Duck Roast thread pretty much took ownership of the place. Coolest of them all: Mathieu Garon's goaltending. He was amazing and quite frankly the only reason Anaheim didn't blow this game wide open IMO. They hammered him (45 SOG) and a lot of those were quality scoring chances. Garon kept the Kings in this game. I know I bitched about making LaBarbera the starter earlier in the season, but if a guy wants to play the way Garon played then I am more than happy to be proven wrong. Tonight: Back at Staples Center, hopefully for a Coyote Roast.

Friday, December 16, 2005

The "B" word (and I don't mean "Burbank")

From what I've heard on the local news, this little fiasco was the result of some drunk idiot joking about a bomb (or as one of the passengers, being interview via phone on air, referred to it "the B word"). The plane was Vegas-bound out of Burbank and a group of co-workers heading off for a holiday celebration had apparently started on the booze early to the point where their judgement and common sense were severely compromised. Brilliant. How clueless (or wasted) do you have to be to joke about this stuff anywhere near the vicinity of an airport or plane? Everyone knows you're not supposed to do that. You will be taken seriously. The flight crew, security and law enforcement didn't screw around. The plane was stopped on the spot and uniforms were all over it. Passengers were taken off and the offending parties cuffed. Good.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Going off on "South Park"

Ricky Blitt and the Farrelly Brothers are apparently in a snitfest over an episode of South Park from 2004 in which fatass emeritus Eric Cartman passes himself off as a very Special Olympian. Must have been sweeps. Okay, first off: casting Johnny Knoxville, aka some Jackass or other as your ringer? Seriously pales in comparison to eminently more watchable Cartman. When a cartoon character upstages you, it's time to rethink your career, at least in the real world. Seriously. And props to Matt Stone for his studious defense of all things Matt and Trey, along with his very perceptive take on the cult of creativity. Why didn't Blitt and the Bros bitch when this thing was first broadcast and not when their feature length version is conveniently hitting theatres now? I'm just sayin'... I'm with Matt on this one. Let the wealth be shared among those who earn and deserve it. As far as the South Park guys ripping off anyone...four little words...gay cowboys eating pudding...

Kings (18-12-1, 37 pts) vs. Washington Capitals (9-17-2, 20 pts)

This is a game we seriously need. Washington is terrible this year, especially in terms of scoring. With a bunch of important games against division rivals coming up the Kings need to just stomp all over the Caps. Good. According to Bob and Jim the Kings braintrust seem to finally be concerned about the power play (28th in the league and 4 for the last 59, God help us) and are actually doing something about it. We'll see. I still don't know what the hell Andy Murray was talking about when he said our PP was our enforcer. WFT? Mathieu Garon, who has taken over as the obvious starter from LaBarbera, was expected to start but he has the flu and so is relegated to backup. Gotta love hockey players. I get the flu, I stay home. A hockey player gets the flu, he dresses and only backs up instead of starts. So it's Jason LaBarbera in goal for the Kings, Olaf Kolzig (hey, it's Ollie the Goalie!) for the Caps. Yah know, I was just about to make fun of Washington's PP because apparently it's almost as sorry as ours...and it was looking pretty crappy...and then they score. DAMN. His Bobness was kind enough to point out that the Kings have lost six straight when their opponent scores first. Thanks, man. And now we go on the PP. Let's see what happens. Which is sad, because going on the power play should be cause for much rejoicing. But we are the Kings, and we just can't do it like everyone else. Come on guys... And the Caps penalty kill is el hideoso! Come on!!!! And it's over and we do not score. Sigh. And now we're on the PP again. And again, there should be much rejoicing but there's not. Jesus, we need a PP quarterback, among many, many other things I'm sure. SWEET JESUS WE SCORED ON THE PP!!!! Eric Belanger!!! Sad, this feels like an old hockey cartoon I saw years ago when the Toronto Maple Leafs were dredging the bottom of the proverbial barrel...the cartoonist had them celebrating a shot on goal as if it were a score. And geez, it's only the first period. WHAAAT THE FUUUUCK??? Pavol Demitra is playing with an illegal stick? WHY??? It's not like he needs the help (I hope). I've been trying to avoid saying this, but JESUS TAPDANCING CHRIST. This goddamn hockey team is determined to give me a freaking ulcer. And the Caps only have one freaking shot on goal and scored on it? Somebody SHOOT ME!!!! They're both so damn inept that we're three on three. Seriously. Gleason goes off hurt. Great. End of the first. There is not enough alcohol and chocolate in the world to deal with this team. And now Fox Sports in their infinite wisdom has paired off Marty McSorley with some random blonde chick thing. Fabulous. Second period. My prayers of losing the dreaded Carl's Jr. milkshake commercial are dashed as said commercial airs. At the risk of sounding like a big fat hypocrite, chief among my few referrals are people who were searching for "carl's jr. milkshake commercial". Yeah guys, I share your pain and apparently not much else. Sean Avery scores the only goal in the second and it's 2-1 Kings in the second intermission. Seriously, if we can't bitchslap a seriously inferior team then we're seriously on course to back into the playoffs and make a quick, unimpressive exit. Give me a new coach. Does anyone know what Larry Robinson is doing these days? Foxy eulogizing Ron Muniz, a guy who was younger than my parents. My heartfelt sympathy to his family and the Kings organization. I could be really tacky and make a crack about how watching this team play can kill you, but... Oh great, now we're in the third and we just coughed up a SHORT HANDED GOAL. That's JUST. FREAKING. TERRIFIC. Oh, my poor heart. Final is 3-2 Caps. God, penalties are killing us and it doesn't seem to matter who is taking them, us or the opponent. It's just bad news either way. I can't believe we lost to a team as bad as Washington. Hey, The Pens just fired their coach. Just sayin'.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

No smoke as far as the eye can see

Back in the terrible days of the 1992 L.A. riots, from which in the safety of my San Dimas apartment 30 some odd miles east of Los Angeles, I could see a significant layer of smoke over L.A., I believed I watched a man - Reginald Denny - a real man, not a TV or movie character - literally being killed on T.V. before my horrified eyes. Denny actually survived and if memory serves me correctly forgave his attackers in court. Which makes him a better man than I, (or stupider or more forgiving or maybe smarter) because I believe that like no good deed, no bad deed should go unpunished. Because I believe that you should get what you deserve, good or bad. I like to think I'm admirably objective that way. As Stanley "Tookie" Williams, convicted murderer and co-founder of the dreaded Crips awaited Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's "mercy" (expected, in my opinion, but ultimately denied, resulting in Williams' demise the other night a quarter century after his sentence was passed) there was much talk of "civil unrest" (that's "riots" in plain English) here in the City of Angles if Williams was actually expected to finally pay for his crimes. And I thought, great, that's just what we Angelenos need. And I expected it. Especially now that I reside in the belly of the beast - HOLLYWOOD - without the comfort and protection and distance of the east San Gabriel Valley. And I never thought of it as overreaction. I reasonably (and sadly, IMO) expected rioting on some level. But it's going on a couple days now and no sign of my neighborhood - or anyone else's - erupting into fiery mayhem. Perhaps it's as they say - "With age comes wisdom". Perhaps the celebrity mayhem of Tookie support didn't reflect the feelings of his older, wiser hood, or any of the rest of us, for that matter. Take that self-absorbed celebrities! The normal people have triumphed again. Better yet, get used to it!

"Arrested Development" deathmarch on hold?

Maybe. How bad would it frost Fox if the show went somewhere else and became a bona-fide hit?

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

It's beginning to look a lot like an NC-17 Christmas

So there I was this afternoon, chained to my desk, minding my own damn business when my buddy Liz was kind enough to hit me with an email innocently titled "Last minute gift?" I mean, it was coming from her mega-corporation email to my mega-corporation email. How bad could it be? Well, of course I clicked on the link. Ever so innocently, as I am wont to do. Heh. Weenie Babies. Yeah, I'm twelve. Click on the pictures for a larger image. Well, who wouldn't? And my personal favorite, Save 10% on the entire set! Soooo, you're giving me a volume discount? Whoever said size doesn't matter didn't know where to shop.

Color me surprised

As we all know by now, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declined to commute Stanley "Tookie" Williams' death sentence and his execution has been carried out. From what I'm hearing on the news from journalists who witnessed the execution, his supporters who were present behaved shamefully in the presence of his victims' families and Williams himself didn't exactly go stoically. I can't remember ever hearing about these kind of theatrics going on while a death sentence is being carried out. I have to say that I was amazed when I heard about the Governator's decision. I was certain he would commute if for no other reason than the feeling that it would be politically advantageous for him to do so, largely based on the high-profile support Williams received, rather than respecting the sentence passed down nearly a quarter century ago. Yeah, I'm jaded that way.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Zuzu's petals

One of my new goals is to build up my holiday viewing library on DVD to go along with my new, inexplicable determination to truly love, embrace, celebrate and enjoy the spirit of the too brief holiday season in a sincerely non-commercial, non-materialistic way, all while residing and working in one of the spiritually harshest, most judgementally PC cities on the face of the Christian founded earth. And here I thought I was doing so well with this whole jaded, cynical thing the past few years of my so-called life. With age comes wisdom indeed. So to go along with the The Grinch this weekend I watched the newly purchased A Charlie Brown Christmas on DVD, my really crappy public domain copy of the otherwise wonderful It's a Wonderful Life on VHS (hello, bad sound! Love you anyway!) and the always fabulous A Christmas Story courtesy of Turner Classic Movies, who will never betray us and sell out like that shameless whore AMC. Ahem. Merry Christmas everyone and remember, everytime a bell rings an angel gets his wings! Whether some killjoy likes it or not. And I even haven't begun to address the whole "A Christmas Carol" issue yet...

Crossroads of the World

While out and about yesterday I happened to trod past Crossroads of the World, a Los Angeles historic landmark originally built as a shopping mall but now mainly serving as offices for various artsy endeavors. I did a double take when I saw the globe on the ground rather than atop the tower on which it is usually mounted: I guess the world just got a fresh coat of paint. And fortunately (and FINALLY) I had the camera with me and got off a couple of shots. As they say in Screenwriting 101, show, don't tell. Recently I've found myself camera-less when I needed it, so I was happy to actually be prepared. A few years ago I worked for a company housed at Crossroads. Despite the crappy condition of the immediate area it was fun to be in a location like that. We were spread throughout the complex and our main executive offices were directly upstairs from the office that served as home to "Hush-Hush Magazine", the gossip rag published by conscious-free Sid Hudgens (Danny Devito) in L.A. Confidential. The downside of course was that some of the less than reputable denizens of the area had a tendency to invite themselves into our offices. Before we resorted to keeping everything locked a couple had helped themselves to the use of our restrooms and a couple of purses (fortunately for me, neither of them mine).

Thursday, December 08, 2005

The spirit of Christmas

It's holiday viewing time and God how I love The Grinch. Aww, Max and Cindy Lou Who and the roast beast and Boris Karloff and the heart that grew three sizes that day and busted through the frame...*sniff* One Christmas morning I was driving to my Mom's house and Kevin and Bean on KROQ played the entire audio track of this show. And not only did it work, it worked perfectly. It was great even without the picture. Recently I was fortunate enough to find Grinch World, where I found the picture in this post along with a few others destined to be my Yahoo IM avatar at work between now and the 25th. Grinch World, for all your Grinchy needs.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

It was 25 years ago tomorrow...

that John Lennon was gunned down by an obsessed fan in front of the Dakota in New York City. I've always thought of it as one of those "where were you when Pearl Harbor was attacked/when Kennedy was shot/when the Challenger exploded/on September 11?" moments. Where were you when John Lennon was shot? I, lamely, was in the bathroom. It was back in the day when my dad was between marriages and living in this condo in West Covina. I was occupying the extra bedroom on account of I had a typically shitty, low paying job and being somewhat of a loser was years away from a place of my own. My dad knocked on the door of the bathroom and told me John Lennon had been shot. Shot doesn't necessarily mean fatal, so I asked if he was okay. The response was a bewildered no, he's dead. When I was little - and I mean really little, it was before my parents divorced, which they did when I was five - my dad (I'm told, don't really remember that far back) used to get me to chant, Ringo is a fink! to irritate my mom, a huge Beatles fan. She actually saw them in concert and has told me it was just like in the old, grainy footage you see, that the girls screamed so loud all through the show that you literally couldn't hear the band. My best friend from high school is a lifelong Beatles nut, a fact proudly proclaimed on her license plate. And I love the Beatles, no matter how many other amazingly gifted artists may come and go, I'm convinced there will never be anything like them again. Thanks to fishbowl L.A. for posting this bit of info. I'll be listening tomorrow at work, taking a brief break from Christmas music. And thanks in advance to WFUV for what promises to be a memorable and heartwrenching day of broadcasting. A grim milestone indeed.

Rampant consumerism

One of my favorite aspects of this whole internet thing is how it evens the playing field between the Davids of the world and the Goliaths of the world. Latest case in point: The Consumerist, latest addition to both the Gawker Media empire and my favorites list. I really like what I see so far and God help anyone who tries to screw over me, the consumer. I'm a big believer of the whole "If I'm giving you my money, you should seriously be treating me with respect" aspect of consumerism. I hope The Consumerist thrives.

I'm all for caffeine, but DAMN

Lord knows I love my soft drinks (the diet variety) and my coffee (definitely not the cheap, low-cal types) but the two combined? I just don't see the attraction. Nope. New Coke anyone?

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Going, going...

And soon to be gone in about 45 minutes, the original Hollywood Sign on ebay. It's jumped from $250k this afternoon to $450k this evening. Do I hear half a million?

Monday, December 05, 2005

With neighbors like these...

Great. It's about midnight and the couple next door to me are having it out again. You know, not quite bad enough to call the police, but enough to make me think about it (or wonder if I'll feel bad that I didn't if she turns up dead). Ah, Hollywood. In San Dimas they only stole my car.

Bah, humbug

It's only the first week of December and already some elementary school students in Oklahoma City are getting scrooged: OKLAHOMA CITY - A Christmas tree that elementary school students decorated with discarded lottery tickets was removed from the state Capitol over the weekend after a lawmaker complained it was inappropriate. Rep. Randy Terrill, who opposes the lottery, said he spotted the tree on Wednesday when it was erected as part of the governor's annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony. The Republican lawmaker called the Westwood Elementary School principal, who apologized and asked the governor's office to remove the tree. Sherry Fair, spokeswoman for Oklahoma City Public Schools, said the teachers and children did not intend to offend anyone. The teachers went to various convenience stores and got used lottery tickets, which were cut into various geometric shapes and placed on the tree. Doesn't this guy have anything better to do than pick on a bunch of elementary school kids? I'm sure they really learned something from all of this, mainly that it's apparently all about Rep. Randy Terrill. It's his world kids, you're just living in it. Still, it's really too bad the Westwood Elementary School principal didn't have a backbone of some kind to fall back on. Because I'm guessing those kids worked hard on those discarded lottery tix slash decorations with nothing but the best of intentions. And you know what they say about the best intentions. And the road paved with same. I realize, I really do, that there is a legitimate argument that kids this young shouldn't be exposed to gambling, but the fact is that lotteries do benefit schools and therefore are topical. It's not like they're benefitting from porn or crap like that. Gambling is like drinking, it can turn into a real problem for some people, but it's still legal. Cigarettes are bad for you too, but they're also legal and you still need to talk to your kids about them. I mean, with all the crap out there, if I had kids exposure to the lottery would be way down the list of things I'd be concerned about my little darlings being exposed to. And the protest came from a politician, not a parent. He must have an election coming up. Anything to get your name in the news, dumbass. Merry Christmas anyway, kids. Consider this a tough but important lesson: there are obnoxious, self-important busybodies who have nothing better to do than ruin it for the rest of us. Sad but true. And I'm sure your tree was lovely. So ignore this guy, he's a jerk. Even Scrooge and the Grinch got it eventually, this whole spirit of Christmas thing. And they're fictional characters. The Terrill guy doesn't get it? His loss, not yours. Seriously kids HIS LOSS, NOT YOURS. You go on and have a great Christmas. And hopefully your tree will be restored.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Very classy. I like.

The Academy has unveiled the official posters for the upcoming Oscars. I love the black and white and gold. Very, very nice. Variety claims to know who is in the posters but isn't saying. However, they do toss out some possibilities: Grace Kelly, Anne Baxter, Julie Andrews, Joanne Woodward, Audrey Hepburn and Liz Taylor for the lady in white, and Gregory Peck, Cary Grant, Clark Gable, David Niven, Gary Cooper and John Wayne for the gentleman in black. Another article I saw called Andrews and Grant, so they're probably the frontrunners. I'm not sure it really matters, as all are more than deserving. After all, it's an honor just to be nominated, right?

Saturday, December 03, 2005

A few of my non-favorite things

Things that do not make me jump for joy this beautiful Southern Cal afternoon (heh, and they said we were gonna get rained on): Last night's King's game. What a freaking fiasco. Especially at the end, when not only were we losing big time, but everything just went to hell. This is why we have the new rules, so blowouts don't deteriorate into thugfests. Only good part was when Jim Fox ripped into Bryan Murray for sending his jolly green goon into battle so late in the game and apparently, the league has sprouted a backbone and agreed. Thanks to CBGB at the Lets Go Kings message boards for transcribing Foxy's diatribe in the beginning of this post. My jaw hit the carpet when Jim started up, it really came out of left field, but you know what? He's right. The league's response backs us up. Personally, I would be happy if fighting was eliminated altogether. Tonight we play Montreal and at the risk of sounding like a fair-weather fan (I prefer the term "long-suffering", thank you very much) I'm not looking forward to the results. I just have a bad feeling about this whole roadtrip. Another pet peeve: The PC plague, a constant source of personal irritation as I find it defies common sense. And if I have a definable religion, I like to think it's the Church of Common Sense. So let me take this opportunity to wish each and every one of you a very, Merry Christmas from the bottom of my cold little heart. I won't be offended if you don't believe in the Christian aspect of this holiday if you won't be offended by me including you in the warm, fuzzy, "peace on earth, goodwill towards men" feeling this holiday gives me and which I would like to cordially extend to you. My intentions are good and with that in mind I don't care to have them trod upon. Thanks bunches in advance for your cooperation. Oh man, just turned on the TV and it's USC 52, UCLA 6 in the 4th quarter. Sweet Jesus...

Friday, December 02, 2005

The battle of Los Angeles

As we all know tomorrow is the big USC/UCLA game. I know where my dad (who studied engineering in Westwood) will be: glued to the tube. Over at Franklin Avenue, Blogger Baby (who apparently has a bright future in sports betting) is calling the Trojans. As much as I hate to admit it, I think he's right. I'd love to see UCLA win but I think SC is going to take this one. One thing I think we can all safely bet on is that this town will be standing still tomorrow.

Original Hollywood Sign on ebay - an update

It's up to $200k and the reserve has been met, so either the Reporter was wrong about the $300k reserve or the guy changed it (can you do that?) The current high bidder is in Spain. Can you imagine what the shipping charges would be?

Never a good sign

Paramount has declined to screen Aeon Flux for critics. You'd think as hot as Charlize Theron's career is right now, that would be enough. It's a shame, I used to like watching the animated shorts on Liquid Television. Really was hoping the movie would be decent. Over at NBC, Joey has been pulled off the air. They aren't coming right out and saying it's cancelled, but even if they do bring it back later this season - which I think will only happen if everything else bombs on that night - I'd bet money it won't be coming back next season.