Category: "miscellaneous"

CDs I can play without skipping a song

5. Soul Coughing Ruby Vroom
I had a marginal knowledge of this band (Super Bon Bon, Soft Serve, Soundtrack to Mary) when I met Danny, who owned three of their CDs. I love this album, their first, because it is raw and original--probably why none of the songs received radio play. Their lyrics, while often nonsensical, become the rhythm of the drums and bass so that they actually do tell a story (however neurotic it may be). I know this is getting long, but I have to say this: it is rumored that the band broke up after Ricky Martin's "Shake Your Bon Bon" was released (because of S.C's "Super Bon Bon".) Poor guys.

Favorite Ruby Vroom song: Janine
Lyric: Janine, I drink you up/ If you were the Baltic Sea and I were a cup, uh huh.

4. Caedmon's Call 40 Acres
I don't listen to many Christian artists, but I love Caedmon's Call because they play many different instruments and styles of music and their lyrics are deep and powerful (or fun and whimsical; pretty much any -icals you can think of are on this album).

Favorite 40 Acres song: 40 Acres
Lyric: Out here the Texas rain is the hardest I've ever seen/ It'll wash your house away, but it'll also make you clean

3. Ben Folds Five Self-Titled
You have probably noticed, being the astute readers that you are, that four of my top five listings are the artists' debut albums. I'm not sure why this is, but it probably has something to do with liking to be the "discoverer" of a band (as much as you can be when you live in the Midwest). At any rate, I love BFF's first album.

Favorite Self-Titled song: The Last Polka (I have no idea how I forgot this song on my best break-up songs entry. I apologize).
Lyric: He said, "Well I hate that it's come to this/ But baby I was doing fine. How do you think/ That I survived the other 25 before you?"

2. Weezer Self-Titled
It's blue. It's beautiful. And it's the sole reason I became a (mediocre) bass player.

Favorite Self-Titled song: Only In Dreams
Lyric: You can't avoid her/ She's in the air/ In between molecules of/ Oxygen and carbon dioxide

1. Pearl Jam Ten
Again, I have to say that I used to eat, sleep and breathe this band (I have recently discovered some more worthy pursuits).

Favorite Ten song: Oceans
Lyric: Hold on to the thread/ The currents will shift/ Glide me towards you know something's left/ And we're all allowed to dream of the next time we touch

Honorable Mention
Eric Clapton eric clapton unplugged
Tori Amos Little Earthquakes
Rusted Root When I Woke

You have what??

After being subjected to Bob Dole promoting Viagra and countless bald men spraying on "natural-looking" hair-in-a-can, I decided it was time to write the "Top 5 personal problem products you should not advertise on tv".

5. Incontinence
What do a traffic cop, a broadcast news reporter and a business woman have in common? Faulty bladders. Honestly, who came up with the catchy jingle, "Gotta go, gotta go, gotta go right now?"

4. Dandruff/dry scalp
While this has been a touchy subject for years, involving many unfortunate black-sweater/turtleneck incidents (good grief--start wearing another color already), I just saw the most disgusting dandruff commercial ever. A guy and a girl were sitting together, then the guy starts scratching his head and it* begins snowing. Finally, in a grand performance of "freedom from flakes", we find that using this shampoo allows the guy to run a broom handle up and down the back of his head, proving once and for all….I have no idea.

3. Bowel Disorders
Don't get me wrong. I love a good dose of toilet humor as much as the next gal. In fact, I have my own share of bowel disorders (just ask Danny). Fortunately, I have kept these two facts very far from each other. I find all the product options confusing and some are even life-threatening (according to paragraph 4 of this article).

2. Herpes
While I do believe it is unfortunate that some people have contracted herpes, I do not need to see them rock-climbing, road-tripping or dating in order to know that they can "still have normal lives". I don't think any of us thought that people with herpes were forced to live outside the camp and yell "unclean" when someone passes.

1. Erectile dysfunction/Male Enhancement
These commercials affect both sexes in the embarrassing department--yet no one wants to change the channel. Hmmm. In simultaneously one of the funniest and most disturbing ad campaigns, the male enhancement drug Enzyte is touted by a campy Bob, who apparently cannot live without bowling, golfing, or having an announcer who constantly uses over-the-top allusions to the male anatomy. If, however, you can't get enough of these commercials, read this guy's take.

*His head.
**I know, I conveniently left out the droves of female commercials. You have to admit, plugging a hole in a boat with a tampon is rather resourceful.

Books on my shelf that I will never read (again)

5. How Stella Got Her Groove Back    Terry McMillan
I think I read this in high school. It's a trashy paperback involving an older woman and her sexual escapades with a much younger man. Why I read this in high school I have no idea-although I do vaguely remember being the younger woman in one relationship. (There was much less pornography, I'll tell you that). My advice--forget that the book and the movie even exist.

4. Jane Eyre    Charlotte Bronte
Now before you go ballistic on me, hear me out. I can't stand period pieces, they are not my style. Nevertheless, at the urge of some female friends, I gave this book a chance, not once, but twice. Let's just say if I were the main character, Jane Eyre would be about 200 pages shorter. I'm not very good at being 'proper'.

3. Invisible Cities    Italo Calvino
This book was required reading in the same 'Intro to the Novel' class as Jane Eyre. The premise--a long and very confusing conversation between Kublai Khan and Marco Polo. Enough said.

2. Me? Obey Him?    Elizabeth Rice Handford
I was given this book as a Christmas present by someone who had never read it. I really appreciated the thought, but somehow, I don't think this book is for me. Maybe it has something to do with these words in the foreword, written by the author's husband: "The author works hard from morning until late at night to carry out her duties as wife, mother, author, Sunday school teacher, choir member, and counselor to many women on every kind of subject…I have seen strong-willed, nagging wives changed into sweet, submissive mates after counseling with the author." (This guy would hate to be married to me.) Or maybe it has something to do with the cover.

1. The Order of Things    Barbara Ann Kipfer
This was one of Danny's impulse buys from the Truman bookstore. It is 376 pages of lists, from the 6 types of accounting to the 10 types of beer measurements. Care to drink a firkin (9.8 gallons), anyone? How about a hogshead (63 gallons)?

Isn't that the guy from...


He's been in over 50 movies, but rarely as the lead. He's good friends with John Cusack, who I am moderately obsessed with. (It's a tie between him and Jon Stewart). Here are my favorite Jeremy Piven-featuring films.

5. Very Bad Things
Okay, so I probably shouldn't like this movie. It involves a bachelor party gone wrong, a cover-up and other not-so-funny themes, yet this movie makes me laugh. I am truly a sick individual.

4. Grosse Pointe Blank
In this movie, Piven plays Paul, a pot-smoking real estate agent who is reunited with Martin (John Cusack), a hit man returning for his high school reunion.
Favorite line:
Martin: Debi's house.
Paul: Kinda crept up on you, didn't it?
Martin: No, you drove us here.
Paul: [pause] Yep.

3. PCU
Finally, a lead role (in an overlooked college movie about political correctness at its worst). Piven plays Droz, the leader of students who live in 'The Pit'.
Favorite line (which is oft-quoted at our house):
Droz: What's this? You're wearing the shirt of the band you're going to see? Don't be that guy.

2. Cupid
I'm bending the rules a bit; this is not a movie. Cupid was on for one season (ABC), and its cancellation rates right up there with My So-Called Life's on the "I can't believe they cancelled this show; if only the WB was around back then" list. Piven played a possible mental case who believed he was Cupid.

1. Say Anything
In one of the greatest movies of all time (completely uncontested), Piven plays Lloyd Dobler's (John Cusack's) friend Mark.
Favorite line:
Mike: I don't know you very well, you know, but I wanted to ask you - how'd you get Diane Court to go out with you?
Lloyd Dobler: I called her up.
Mike: But how come it worked? I mean, like, what are you?
Lloyd Dobler: I'm Lloyd Dobler.
Mike: This is great. This gives me hope. Thanks.

Virtual Keyboard

Check out this PDA keyboard. It's projected by laser onto any flat surface and it uses IR to calculate what key you're pushing. It's for sale here for $100. George Jetson, eat your heart out.

Peter Jackson cameo in the Two Towers

Peter Jackson cameo

I was capturing some clips from the Two Towers (for this Sunday's message at church) and I noticed that this soldier looks a lot like Peter Jackson. This is from the battle of Helm's Deep, just as the door is being smashed.

Rock Star Cameos

1. Dave Pirner (of Soul Asylum) in Reality Bites
He is sitting on a couch behind Janeane Garafalo as she informs us that her parents "pee with the door open." He then mumbles something incoherent.

2. George Clinton (of George Clinton and the P-Funk All Stars) in PCU
After a trip to find beer and an unfortunate incident with an old woman and Pampers, Gutter cannot find a way back to campus; George shows up in the nick of time and gives him a ride on the tour bus.

3. Elvis Costello (of Elvis Costello and the Attractions and just Elvis Costello) in 200 Cigarettes
A subplot of this movie is one character's obsession with Elvis C.; he actually shows up at her party (as demonstrated in Polaroids), but she is "indisposed" and doesn't get to see him. There are also rumors that he walks between Courtney Love and Paul Rudd (recently Phoebe's boyfriend on Friends, not that I watch that show) in one scene. I need to watch again to see if this is true.

4. Eddie Vedder (of Pearl Jam) in Singles
You will find him sitting in a restaurant booth near the end of the film, playing the never-ending role of deep, introverted rocker. This movie also features cameos from the rest of the band, and performances by Alice in Chains and Soundgarden. Eddie's 'State of Love and Trust' and 'Breath' are on the soundtrack and can't be found anywhere else.

5. Alice Cooper in Wayne's World
Wayne and Garth get backstage passes to see the band; after passing hordes of groupies they arrive to take part in this conversation:
Wayne Campbell: So, do you come to Milwaukee often?
Alice Cooper: Well, I'm a regular visitor here, but Milwaukee has certainly had its share of visitors. The French missionaries and explorers began visiting here in the late 16th century.
Pete (band member): Hey, isn't "Milwaukee" an Indian name?
Alice Cooper: Yes, Pete, it is. In fact, it's pronounced "mill-e-wah-que" which is Algonquin for "the good land."
Wayne Campbell: I was not aware of that.

Let the paranoia begin.

www.reversespeech.com

This site claims that all human speech contains secret subliminal messages when played in reverse. I did an experiment and found that it's true. When I say "Reverse Speech dot com" and play it backwards, it says, "Make loony famous."

Spirit rolls out

JPL engineers played Baha Men's "Who Let the Dogs Out" in the control room as they watched new images confirming that the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit successfully rolled off its lander platform early Thursday morning.

from the Mars Moblog

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