Q. In June, Lindsay Lohan signed on for extended care at Promises, a luxury rehab center in Malibu. Isn’t that really just an extended vacation?And the punch line, for anyone who has been living in a monastery this past week.
—N.B., Washington, D.C.
A. No. Lohan, 21—who abused alcohol, pills and cocaine—seems committed to finally getting clean.
Saturday, July 28, 2007
The people profiled in the article are not really the ultra-wealthy; the salary figures that the writer quotes show that most of them only make about twice the median household income for the United States. The heroic measures taken by these modern-day Scrooges in order to scrimp every penny include cooking their own meals, taking advantage of happy hours and drink specials at bars, shopping the sale racks at Urban Outfitters, and being deprived of new $300 Gucci shoes (which was too much to ask of one man, who bought them despite the fact that they didn't fit).
I was also amused by this description of a 31-year-old woman :
She also wanted an apartment large enough to fit her lunchbox collection, her Spiderman collection and her collection of Jack Skellington dolls in coffins from “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”Because really, what's the point of owning your apartment if it doesn't look like it was decorated by Tom Hanks in Big?
Friday, July 27, 2007
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth turned 49 today. That makes him almost twice as old as me, although he looks young enough to still get carded. He has somehow remained perpetually cool through the decades, along with his wife/bassist Kim Gordon. Their daughter Coco is therefore genetically predisposed to be the coolest person in the history of the universe.
As a bonus, here is Sonic Youth's take on The Simpsons' theme song, from an episode that originally aired when I was too young to understand who Sonic Youth was and why it was neat that they were appearing on The Simpsons.
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
According to Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings, Karl Rove, a vile smear artist for whom "turd blossom" is an affectionate nickname, is not such a hit with the ladies. According to Moby, however, Karl Rove actually has a sense of humor!
You know, there's something a little off about the fact that Mr. Rove couldn't get a date with a red-blooded Texas Republican gal like Ms. Spellings, but he's able to charm a liberal vegan techno artist guy from New York City. Not that I want to spread innuendo or anything; that sort of thing seems like it would be Karl's department.
Secretary of State Rice has said before that she would someday like to be commissioner of the NFL. Most people would probably hesitate to join an organization whose recent headlines involve the phrase "federal dogfighting charges," but that might qualify as a step up for Ms. Rice these days.
Plan B: submitting the op-ed (one line at a time) to Pluggers or They'll Do It Every Time.
A few months ago, she decided to write an opinion piece about Lebanon. She enlisted John Chambers, chief executive officer of Cisco Systems as a co-author, and they wrote about public/private partnerships and how they might be of use in rebuilding Lebanon after last summer's war. No one would publish it.
Think about that. Every one of the major newspapers approached refused to publish an essay by the secretary of state. Price Floyd, who was the State Department's director of media affairs until recently, recalls that it was sent to the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and perhaps other papers before the department finally tried a foreign publication, the Financial Times of London, which also turned it down.
As a last-ditch strategy, the State Department briefly considered translating the article into Arabic and trying a Lebanese paper. But finally they just gave up. "I kept hearing the same thing: 'There's no news in this.' " Floyd said. The piece, he said, was littered with glowing references to President Bush's wise leadership. "It read like a campaign document."
Not surprising: Dick Cheney doesn't keep up with pop culture. Also not surprising, but considerably more disturbing: a man who walked up to the Vice President in a public place and criticized his Iraq policy was promptly arrested for assault (how this story is only now making the rounds is beyond me).
The remarkable thing about Cheney is that he makes you look back fondly on the days when he spent his time telling his enemies to go fuck themselves and shooting his friends in the face. The more I reflect on the guy, the less I want to know just what he keeps in those man-sized safes of his.
MONTEREY, Calif. -- Jumbo squid that can grow up to 7 feet long and weigh more than 110 pounds are invading central California waters and preying on local anchovy, hake and other commercial fish populations, according to a study published Tuesday.The article mentions that the squids would likely avoid coming near humans. If that weren't the case, this would be the stuff of an eco-conscious SciFi Channel original movie.
. . .
The jumbo squid used to be found only in the Pacific Ocean's warmest stretches near the equator. In the last 16 years, it has expanded its territory throughout California waters, and squid have even been found in the icy waters off Alaska, Zeidberg said.
Sunday, July 22, 2007
I spent most of my second day at Wiggins Park hanging around the Marina Stage, partly so I could catch some of the lesser-known acts and partly because the lineup on the main stage had very little to appeal to me. For the second day in a row, I arrived too late to see the buzzed-about local band I was hoping to catch, in this case Bucks County's Illinois. By the time I got there, the tour van was already packing up to haul ass to Lollapalooza. Good luck, fellas!
What Happened Next...
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Friday's lineup was heavier on the rock than previous years, due to WXPN's partnership with Y-Rock. Due to traffic (since when is the Schuylkill congested?) and getting lost in Camden for a while (which is not a fun thing to do), I missed the first couple of performers. So sorry A-Sides: I had to content myself with listening to your set on the radio. They did set up the theme of the day, however, by remarking about their technical difficulties between songs. At one point, it sounded like they were picking up a police scanner frequency, although that could have been my radio. They also said that their long-awaited album Silver Storms will finally be released in August, which sort of makes it the SMiLE of Philly-area indie-rock. I also missed second-stagers Eastern Conference Champions, whose name makes them sound like a third-rate emo band. This is apparently not true, so my apologies to them for my prejudice.
I finally arrive at the stage towards the end of their set, so I can't really comment on it. I saw about ten minutes or so, but I think that was entirely taken up by an extended guitar solo. The crowd seemed to enjoy it, though.
Well, G. Love was apparently in the studio until he drove across the bridge to perform a (very brief) set. You know, about ten years ago people might have been excited to see G. Love without needing to keep us guessing about a mystery guest. (Then again, the crowd seemed genuinely psyched to see him, and some were even bragging about the fact they had tickets to an upcoming show of his, so what do I know?)
I'd never heard of these guys before they took the stage. I had no idea the lead singer was British until he introduced himself a couple of songs into their set (I'm not sure if his nationality is any excuse for that getup he's wearing). Their energetic rock was not exactly moving the crowd, although that's probably more because it was 6 PM and everyone was lounging on the grass, so it's not really their fault.
Cracker was the only band of the day to play an encore.
Incidentally, if Cracker plays a Camper Van Beethoven song, is that technically a cover? David Lowery's project-juggling confuses me.
During Cracker's set, I saw Jody and Chris hanging around near the stage. I had no intention of barging up and saying anything, so I just attempted to take a discreet picture, after which I felt really creepy.
So much for my career as a paparazzi.
Earl Greyhound won the following awards:
- Most awesome hair
- Most giant kick drum
- Most justification for me wearing my earplugs
- Most sheer face-rocking-off power
- Most sheer ass-rocking-off power
- Most disappointment upon announcing they only had time for one more song
- Most excitement by me to see these guys perform a full set in the near future
The best recommendation I can give for these guys, though, is that by the end of the set even I was engaged in a stiff-limbed approximation of dancing. I'm hopeful that the Fratellis will be able to make a name for themselves without being known as "Those Guys Who Had That One Song in a Commercial."
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Oh, and pay no attention to the accompanying list of the Ten Best Episodes. Any such list that contains no mention of "Last Exit to Springfield" is nothing but lies and deceit. To wit:
I rest my case.
In the reality genre, [NBC co-chairman Ben] Silverman appears to be moving ahead with a new version of the old syndicated show, American Gladiators (which apparently rolls along nicely in repeats on ESPN Classic).
Great news! I think Laser could really use the work.
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Boy, was I surprised. For one thing, James Bond doesn't show up until the last third of the book. The whole novel is told from the point of view of Vivienne Michel, who could best be described as the "Bond Girl" of the story. What's more, the first hundred pages or so contain nothing but backstory, filling us in on how our narrator got her heart broken a couple of times before buying a Vespa and going on a road trip through America, picking up some temporary work at a motel along the way. When the plot finally does kick in, Bond shows up by pure chance. Once he does, though, the action picks up. The day gets saved, the girl gets bedded, the end.
So, not really what I was expecting, which is actually good. The Bond movies are possibly the most formulaic film franchise in history, so it was great to read a book that was obviously going out of its way to dispense with that formula. One of my favorite moments is when Bond is telling Vivienne about the mission he just finished, a violent affair involving a Russian defector, an ex-Gestapo assassin and the ever-present SCEPTRE. In short, it's much closer to your typical Bond plot, but it's related in a single chapter over coffee, with Bond repeatedly interrupting himself to make sure Vivienne isn't bored hearing it. Fleming's writing does just what it should: moves you along through the plot without needing to call attention to itself. And refreshingly, the book was free of gratuitous gadgetry, ridiculous character names, and awful post-mortem puns.
While I was reading the book, I couldn't help but wonder how it was ever adapted into a movie. You have a hero who's absent through much of the book, a heroine with a rich and detailed non-spy backstory, and a plot that does not involve the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Then, I got my answer:
The only common story elements between the novel and the film are its title and two henchman Jaws and Sandor who are loosely inspired by the book's villains Horror and Sluggsy. The film is considered as the first Bond film whose story is completely original.Apparently Fleming wasn't pleased with the final result of his book and wouldn't allow the plot to be carried over to the film. It was probably a wise decision for the franchise. After all, more people are interested in seeing Hamlet than Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.
Saturday, July 14, 2007
That's Cate Blanchett as Dylan and David Cross as Allen Ginsburg.
I first heard about this project a couple of years ago, and I was ambivalent at first; the use of multiple actors to play the Dylan character seemed like the height of artsy self-indulgence. Then I saw pictures of Blanchett in costume and it whetted my curiosity. Now I'm really interested to see how this turns out. This clip gets my hopes up; it really mimics the style of Don't Look Back, and Blanchett's seems to do a good job of playing a man.
I'm Not There will be released in September.
(via Ain't It Cool News)
I know who I'm rooting for!
When Jerue came across an ad for the contest on the Internet early last week, he turned to his girlfriend.
"You're not going to believe this. What do you think I'm looking at?"
"Porn?" she replied.
"No. Try again."
She shrugged. "I'm out of ideas."
On that note, welcome to my new blog! Hopefully I can live up to the rigorous standards set by the young lady pictured above.