Friday, September 30, 2005

Friday Random 10: Dead By Dawn

I'm feeling honest today - quite an irregularity. Here's my completely undoctored Random 10, no matter what embarrassing song comes up (there are a few on the ol' iPod). And semi-inspired by DAve, it's the first ever Martians Attacking Indianapolis Friday Random 10 Commentary.

1) The Smiths, "Girlfriend in a Coma"
So I downloaded this because it was supposed to be great, hip, etc. Quite frankly, I don't see what the fuss is about. But you're insane if you think I'm deleting it and putting myself in danger of not hanging out with the cool kids.

2) Prodigy, "Mind Fields"
Prodigy takes me back to a much earlier time in my life, an ecstatic time if you will.

3) The La's, "There She Goes"
From the So I Married An Axe Murderer soundtrack. And that, dear friends, is the only time you will ever see So I Married An Axe Murderer mentioned on this blog.

4) U2, "Gloria"
Early U2 - and I'm going to U2 Hell for saying this - but this was actually before they hit their stride.

5) U2, "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For"
Their stride.

6) Robin Harris, "Bebe's Kids (Side 2)"
If Harris hadn't died in 1990, Bernie Mac isn't a star today. Every one of Mac's early roles - Don't Be A Menace..., Above the Rim, Friday - would have been offered to Sweet Dick Willie first.

7) Van Halen, "Panama"
Or as my friend Dennis always thought, "Tearin' Em Up!"

8) Three Dog Night, "Eli's Coming"
I downloaded this for my dad, but keep it on there because it gives me a bit of street cred. With other 60 year olds.

9) U2, "Elevation (Influx Remix)"
Their fourteenth stride.

10) The Chemical Brothers, "The Big Jump"
Mmm,... ecstatic.

Eh, that was boring. I hesitate to even put the U2 songs in there, since not a Random 10 goes by without their inclusion (that's what I get for buying "The Complete U2" from iTunes). So let's cross out those U2 songs and add three more:

1) The Smiths, "Girlfriend in a Coma"
2) Prodigy, "Mind Fields"
3) The La's, "There She Goes"
4) U2, "Gloria"
5) U2, "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For"
6) Robin Harris, "Bebe's Kids (Side 2)"
7) Van Halen, "Panama"
8) Three Dog Night, "Eli's Coming"
9) U2, "Elevation (Influx Remix)"
10) The Chemical Brothers, "The Big Jump"
11) Strong Bad, "Circles"
12) Drivin 'N' Cryin, "Powerhouse"
13) Dave Grusin, "The Goonies (Main Theme)"

Ah, lesson learned: Ignore U2, the number 13 will bite you in the ass.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Coming soon

If you're like me, you sit around thinking things like "What if The Shining had been directed by Cameron Crowe?"

Read about it here.

Ok, after watching it for the fifth time, I've realized something that really bugs me. It seems they use only elements from Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, but in fact they lifted something from About Schmidt. See if you can find it. I don't know, it just feels like a cheat, something that sullies the whole thing just a tad.

Geauxing to hell

Before Monday night's thrilling game between Tennessee and LSU (in which the ugly orange team beat the ugly yellow team in OT), apparently some of those poor, downtrodden angels of Louisiana expressed their frustration in the only way they knew how, the poor dears.

Their actions, only so obviously, included pelting the UT buses with beer bottles, rocking them, and cracking windows. And while I can get behind the impulse to damage Volunteer Nation in any way possible, I don't have to use my imagination to conjure up what these drunk Cajun hicks can be like.

My father and I were down in Red Stick for the 1998 UGA/LSU game, in which Quincy Carter made his name synonymous with Heisman - for about three hours, anyway. We took them down hard - the #4 team in the country at the time - and walked out with our heads held high. Granted, there were a few sincere "Good game, Dawgs" lobbed at us, but for every one of those, we had 100 things said that can't be printed here... the most memorable by a 16-year-old girl, in fact.

My father and I actually felt physically threatened a few times, as we found ourselves in the middle of some increasingly belligerent groups. I still don't know what would have happened if somebody had pushed me - or worse, my dad - but no matter what, we would have been very outnumbered. I've been in situations sorta, kinda like that, on a much more watered-down level (seen a couple in Athens, unfortunately), but that was the first time I'd witnessed raw hate coming out of someone's eyes and mouth just because a person liked a different football team. And yes, everything seems a hundred times more personal when you're with your father.

"We are working hard to address the problem presented by the small percentage of people who, by their actions, damage the reputation of an entire University," Bertman wrote.

Damage the reputation? DAMAGE the reputation? As anybody who has ever been to that sticky Hellpit can tell you, this only reinforces the reputation.

Al Qaida called Hurricane Katrina an act of God because it struck the US. I called Katrina an act of God because it struck Louisiana.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Oh so Atlanta

Krispie is making a little more noise than "snap, crackle and pop" these days.

"There are a million Tiffany Nicoles out there," she said. "There's only one O'so Krispie."

Damn straight.

The silence of her little lambs

Jodie Foster almost lost her famous cool in a cinema recently when she stood up to a woman who was upset about her young son's questions. The actress took her kids to see nature documentary March Of The Penguins and ended up confronting the bitter woman in front of her, who turned on her kid for quietly asking questions in the dark.

Foster recalls, "This woman went berserk. She started with the shushing from the get go ... and then she starts yelling at me. Finally, I just turn into the most perfect police officer where I was whispering, 'You know, you're really disturbing everybody, and I think it would be a good idea if you moved if you're not happy.' It almost came to blows. I'm pretty sure I did say something offensive at some point, something like, 'You're awfully young to be that bitter.' She really lost her mind. But I was insulted. I understand. I go to a movie, I don't want to be disturbed. But don't go to a noon Sunday matinee of a family movie. I mean, what do you expect?"

Um, Jodie, my little schnookums - I don't care if its a Sunday matinee, a Thursday late show, or Friday prime time presentation - if your kids are talking, it is YOUR JOB to get them to be quiet, or excuse yourself from the theater. If your children are prone to ask a lot of questions or talk in other ways during a film, stay home and watch DVDs.

That's such a typical attitude of today's parents. Her children are talking, yet she says the other woman is "really disturbing everybody." Her fellow moviegoer might have overreacted a bit, but I can't say I wouldn't have done the same thing.

That said, I saw Flightplan last night, and it might have been better if babies had cried the entire time.

Friday, September 23, 2005

A side benefit to voting Republican

A 4-day weekend.

Friday Random 10: The Island of Lost Dreams

Now this is what I'm talking about - freakin' Friday. This has been just a disgusting week in the life of yours truly. My trusty Honda failed me on Monday (I've had her since I was 17 - and yes, that is almost 13 years), and my replacement Caddy kicked out on me yesterday. My eBay account has been permanently suspended (long story for another time), my students have been testing all week and are therefore insane by now, I had two papers and a project due this week, and I haven't gotten a good night's sleep in at least a month thanks to long weekends spent in Athens.

This weekend, however, is MINE. Let me repeat: MINE. Most of my friends are going to be out of town, and as much as I love 'em, it's a relief. No plans, no commitments, no last minute phone calls I feel obliged to take. I'm looking forward to mowing my lawn, kicking back with some Netflix, and drinking by myself. If somebody wants to join me, I don't mind company. But realize: these days are - oh yes, they are mine.

1) Carter Burwell, "The Long Way Around" (from the Miller's Crossing soundtrack)
2) The Dust Brothers, "This Is Your Life"
3) Prodigy, "Funky Shit"
4) Creedence Clearwater Revival, "Proud Mary"
5) Tom Petty, "A Face in the Crowd"
6) The Bangles, "Where Were You When I Needed You"
7) Bruce Springsteen, "Working on the Highway"
8) Outkast, "Art of Storytellin' (Part I)"
9) The Chemical Brothers, "Left Right"
10) R. Kelly, "Ignition (Remix)"


Thursday, September 22, 2005

"Oregon" found; more beautiful, childhood-killing than expected

A quick correction to yesterday's "Oregon Trail" post...

It turns out today's "Oregon Trail" is actually much different than the ol' 1987 version of my dreams. When I played it a couple of years ago (the basis for my "it hasn't changed" sentiment), I forgot to consider it was at a fairly ghetto school, using computers that still relied on floppy drives. And not the hard floppys, but the bendy kind that looked more like square 45" records (computer nerds, if you feel the least bit obligated to make technical corrections to that statement, wipe the crusted Dragon Con make-up out of your eyes and take a long look into your D&D sticker-covered mirror).

I took my class to play the game yesterday - we're actually studying the gold rush and various ways folks traveled across the plains, so for once it's somewhat relevant. The "new" version is absurdly complicated, in fact - it took me 20 minutes to even get on the trail after buying all of my supplies. Not only do we have to decide between how many oxen, wheel axles and pounds of sugar to buy, but now players have to decide between an entire Publix worth of food, specific pieces of clothing down to underwear and socks, and non-essentials such as "candy" and "horses."

And though people in your wagon still die ("Mr. Massey" died in no less than 10 of my students' games - hopefully not on purpose), I managed to get "fired" from my job as trail leader. And that was the end of the game. Not one bout of cholera, a case of dystentery, or even a solitary shingle. Just a rash of incompetence.

It is the one place in American schools where students are still allowed to mention guns, however, so at least (for now) political correctness hasn't drained the flavor out of everything. Just give it time, I guess.

A screenshot from the new game:

One person gets it...

... it's just not the person I expected.

"Right now we need a president who will help. He's helping. I'm so grateful. Poverty and misery is humbling. I'm humbled to the core that this administration is helping the poorest of the poor. Why beat up on a president who's helping? When I'm calling around for willing hands, I'm not worrying about party affiliation. Like my aunt's a nurse. But she had no supplies. I called my friend Trent Lott, the senator from Louisiana. He got supplies to her. Kicking people who are working 24/7 to bring assistance? I don't think so. When I needed to relocate my family, some of whom were sick and on welfare, when I needed to find them housing, white people opened their hearts and homes. A Red Cross volunteer found my father. I've seen Anne Rice's house. It's in 5 feet of water. People, white and black, are reaching out to one another. If the government didn't act quickly, the people acted quickly. It's no time to play the race card."

- Donna Brazile, Al Gore's former campaign manager, in today's New York Post. I can forgive her, by the way, for one small error - Trent Lott is from Mississippi.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Strollin' down memory "Trail"

The creator of "Oregon Trail" comes out of hiding to answer our long-gestating queries about his superior product.

I am happy to report, by the way, that today's 5th graders still play "Oregon Trail," and even happier to report it hasn't changed much since 1987. I am not happy to report, however, I am slowly dying of dysentery.

Monday, September 19, 2005

"Excuse me, do these effectively hide my thunder?"

Public service announcement: The third season of "Arrested Development" - only the funniest television show ever - begins tonight (8 p.m. EST on Fox, check local listings).

If you haven't seen it yet ... I mean, what the hell? Get with it, cha-cha! The show could easily be cancelled if ratings don't improve, so do your part and spread the word.

Sierra missed

The Sierra Club: Flooding America's cities since 1892.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Friday Random 10: Jason Takes Manhattan

So apparently something as simple as NFL's season kickoff has turned Martians Attacking Indianapolis into an "all sports, all the time" blog. And that's fine with me. I'll get back to other forms of pop culture shortly, but allow me some time to wallow in the supple, soothing fat of the football season for awhile.

1) U2, "Auld Lang Syne / Where the Streets Have No Name (Live at Point Depot, Dublin, 31 Dec '89)"
2) The Chemical Brothers, "Come Inside"
3) Wesley Willis, "I Whooped Batman's Ass"
4) Strong Bad, "fhqwhgads"
5) Bush, "Everything Zen"
6) James Horner, "Resolution and Hyperspace" (from the Aliens soundtrack)
7) Tupac Shakur, "I Get Around"
8) The Pogues, "If I Should Fall From Grace With God"
9) Ryan Adams, "Shakedown on 9th Street"
10) Hootie & the Blowfish, "Closing Time (Live)"

How appropriate for #10. A bit of trivia, by the way: That James Horner track was indeed written for Aliens, but was much more prominent two years later in Die Hard (when Alexander Godunov popped up at the end, only to be whacked by the "Family Matters" dad). Why this piece of music was used in both movies, however... well, I can't claim to know (both were Fox productions, and that's about the only similarity I know of). Either way, if I ever make an action movie, I'll be sure to have it in there - its track record is pretty damn good so far.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

This press conference brought to you by Wendy's

Donovan McNabb on Atlanta Falcons DE Chad Lavalais being fined for an illegal hit on the Philly QB:

"I'm not a fine guy, I don't go back and try to point fingers on what people did. If it didn't happen, it's not going to stop my preparation for San Francisco. It's nothing that's going to make me go out and buy a Wendy's triple-stacked cheeseburger. I'm not going to buy them any flowers or take somebody from the league out to eat."

Some posts need jokes, some don't.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

No ugly duckling

Mixing politics and sports, the two things I get most irritated about...

In my mind, the first black president will have to be two of three things:

1) a Republican
2) a celebrity before his or her political career
3) running against Hillary Clinton

Of course, the oft-mentioned Condi Rice fills #1 and (potentially) #3 quite nicely, which could lead to her taking the Oath of Office. But now is reporting a new political star may be on the horizon.

This is a little absurd to talk about before Swann even officially decides to run for governor. However, if he takes the plunge, he will immediately be a major force in the GOP movement. He brings a pre-built nationally recognized stature, good looks, charisma, and (perhaps most importantly) political ideals which will energize both conservatives and black communities. And if somebody - anybody - manages to sweep those two off their feet, they'd be unbeatable.

I mean, "Kazaam" aside

Pound for pound, is there anybody in professional sports cooler than Shaq Daddy?

I love the idea of a guy with untold millions in the bank hanging up his hightops and going to work for $35,000 a year. And apparently being completely serious about his intent to do so.

"For this incident I don't want to be credited as an individual who does police work," O'Neal said in a statement. "I want to be credited as a Miami Beach police officer."

Monday, September 12, 2005

Remember, you can't spell Sugar without GA

The Sugar Bowl director wants the game to be played in Baton Rouge.

Here's where civic pride and political correctness could overcome logic and common sense. The plain truth, which Louisiana higher-ups will do their best to ignore, is that Baton Rouge simply cannot support the 200,000 people that will flood into that town in the days prior to the game.

It might seem like a slap in the face to Louisiana, but the only answer is to move the game to Atlanta. The Sugar Bowl should be kept in an SEC state, and there is no better replacement stadium for it than the Georgia Dome.

Especially if UGA plays in it.

Confessions of a 20-something football junkie

Random thoughts about Sunday's NFL action:

  • Daunte Culpepper will never lead a team to a championship, with the possible exception of your cousin Earl's fantasy squad. Today's football talking heads are too scared to say it - just look what happened to Rush Limbaugh when he made a bone-headed but not racist statement about Donovan MacNabb - but the Minnesota quarterback is not very intelligent. It's the classic "million dollar talent, ten cent head" story. A game highlight was Culpepper being alarmingly ignorant of the basic rules (he thought off-setting penalties meant his just-completed touchdown pass would stand, excitedly thrusting his hands in the air before the truth was slowly explained to him). Many other times during yesterday's game he looked confused and miles away from the action, which led directly to his team's 24-13 home loss against the lowly Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
  • Cincinnati looked reasonably strong in a 27-13 win over Cleveland, particularly on its defensive side. Their two leading tacklers? Just two down-home boys named Odell Thurman and David Pollack, in their first NFL start.
  • America Online's fantasy football sucks. This is my first - and last - time using their website, as the first week has been full of intermittent website availability. The site's "live scoring" option wasn't available all afternoon, stripping me of my favorite Sunday pasttime - getting some work done around the house, while keeping a close eye on my players' stats. And here we are on Monday morning, and I can't find an updated score to save my life - much less any free agent stats from yesterday. That said, the far superior CBS Sportsline's set-up was working like a charm all afternoon for my baseball league, where I'm in the semi-finals against my sister's team. Considering she's currently in Louisiana volunteering for pet rescue services, should I feel bad I still have a bloodthirsty desire to call her with a taunting, profane message if I win? (That last part was written yesterday afternoon. The taunting, profane message will have to wait as she won. Damn hippie).
  • The Washington Nationals beat the Chicago Cubs Sunday afternoon 9-7 - well, actually, that was the Washington Redskins defeating the Chicago Bears with that pathetic, baseball-sounding score.
  • Jerry Rice does not have a future in television. His brief analyis (on CBS, I believe) was peppered with more uncomfortable pauses and "uh's" than a stuttering Tourettes patient who's drunk.
  • "It's gotta be exciting to be a 49er fan!" This is some of the "analysis" I was forced to listen to while watching the San Francisco/St. Louis game (if you want to know why I was watching it, look no further than my bank account). This heady praise came just as the 49ers scored their first points of the season - over four minutes into the second quarter. Not exactly immediate fireworks. Are there honestly no more than five or six good football analysts in the world? Why are the lesser games forced to pull from such a shallow talent pool? And why are they so unbelievably afraid to be critical? That's the real problem with hiring former players to sit in the booth - some of them are very intelligent, but almost all of them are terrified of being labeled a "player hater."
  • I can't believe I bet on a Mike Martz-coached team, by the way. I'm disgusted with my Week One rustiness.

Sunday, September 11, 2005


Four years ago, the world watched in horror as terrorists hit, uh, terrorists hit New... zzzzzzzzzzzz...................

(The five year anniversary should be a little better for this kind of thing).

Sunday Random 10: Back in the Minors

The Friday Random 10 got lost in a hazy shuffle that ended my week - it was an insanely long week at work (funny that it was only 4 days), and then of course I had to put all my energy into preparing for what was sure to be UGA's complete and utter annihilation of South Carolina. Ahem,...

1) U2, "Everlasting Love"
2) Tommy James & the Shondells, "Mony Mony"
3) Passengers, "Bottoms (Watashitachi No Ookina Yume) [Zoo Station Remix]"
4) The A Mighty Wind Players, "A Mighty Wind"
5) Kenny Chesney, "Please Come to Boston (Live)"
6) Bruce Springsteen, "Further On (Up the Road)"
7) Outkast, "We Luv Deez Hoez"
8) Mr. Garrison, "Merry Fucking Christmas"
9) Trey Parker, "Team America March"
10) The Killers, "Midnight Show"

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

A decade under the influence

It officially makes me want to vomit thinking Cal Ripken broke Lou Gehrig's streak record 10 years ago.

Was it a freaking DECADE ago I was watching baseball all the time, drinking too much beer, hitting on 19 year old girls, spending my fall weeks planning my tailgating experience, laughing at my own farts, getting turned down my 19 year old girls, ignoring my homework, and skipping class?

Oh, how the times have changed. After all, I have a blog now.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Sorta cool...

... and official.

Even the pretty ones are evil

CNN's Anderson Cooper lays some smack on rising Dem star Mary Landrieu (D-LA) about Washington's complete bungling of the hurricane tragedy.

I'm a fairly conservative guy, but I'm becoming more and more convinced we need to evict every elected official and just start over - Republicans and Democrats, alike. Apparently Anderson shares some of my feelings.

Friday Random 10 With a Vengeance

I'm off to Destin this afternoon, celebrating a friend's impending nuptials - well, "celebrating" isn't exactly the right word. Honestly, and we all know this, bachelor parties are just an excuse to get together, drink like 18 year olds, and per chance ogle some naked chicks. Of course, we're all too ancient for that now (I'm 29, for God's sake), so instead plans involve golf, poker and fishing.

But yes, we'll probably end up at a strip club at some point.

1) Outkast, "Aquemini"
2) Green Day, "Extraordinary Girl"
3) SR71, "Right Now"
4) Drivin 'N' Cryin, "Let's Go Dancing"
5) The Pogues, "Sunnyside of the Street"
6) U2, "Jesus Christ (from the Sun Studio Sessions for Rattle & Hum)"
7) Frankie Goes to Hollywood, "Relax"
8) Outkast, "Tomb of the Boom"
9) Carter Burwell, "Running Wild" (from the Miller's Crossing soundtrack)
10) Karl Denson, "Latin Snap"

Anything a clever foreshadowing of a bachelor party weekend?

The one thing I can promise: "Let's Go Dancing" will not exit the mouth of any guy on this trip.

Thursday, September 01, 2005