Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Grab his bottom lip

From The Sun Online:

Tom Cruise's pregnant fiance Katie Holmes will be reminded to keep her vow of silence during birth - by signs plastered around their home.

The couple - following the Scientology tradition of a silent birth - had the posters delivered to their Beverly Hills mansion.

The 6 foot placards will be placed so Katie can see them in labour.

One reads: "Be silent and make all physical movements slow and understandable."

Dawson's Creek actress Katie, 26, must "keep mum" and will not even be allowed painkillers when she has the couple's first child due any day.

Friends - believed to be Scientology elders - were pictured carrying the huge white boards through the gates.

The "birthing boards" will also tell staff and visitors to stay silent.

Followers believe it is traumatic for babies to hear their mother scream or groan when giving birth. They think it can cause "psychic" damage, which takes years of therapy to overcome.

The cult's creator, sci-fi writer L. Ron Hubbard, once said: "Maintain silence in the presence of birth to save both the sanity of the mother and child."

The doctrine stresses newborns cannot be poked or prodded for medical tests or spoken to for seven days.

Katie began dating Tom, 43, last year. She was well-known for her Catholic beliefs but quickly fell pregnant and is yet to wed.
First of all, being that this is from The Sun, I'm going to take it with a grain of salt.

BUT, that being said, if this story is true, then I have my own advice for Katie: When your first serious contraction occurs, grab Tom's genitals and squeeeeezzzzeeeee them with every ounce of your strength, making sure to dig in your nails if possible. This should help somewhat to bear the pain. You should then follow this by doing the same in kind to any male that dares come near you holding a sign.

Don't worry, Scientologists. Her movements will be slow and very understandable.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Stanislaw Lem: 1921 - 2006

Very freaky. I was thumbing through my collection of his books over the weekend.

Rest in Peace.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Numbers! Gah!

A recent headline on Yahoo News:
Ethiopia Skull at Least 250,000 Years Old
How dare they print such garbage! Don't they know that young children could be reading this?

Don't worry, kids: The skull they found is simply "very, very old".

"I thought I could never teach again!"

Ahem. For you Simpsons aficionados out there: It would appear that the writers of the episode "Separate Vocations" didn't need to just make up a teacher's name, apparently.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Again, that number to call is (605) 348-7373

Click to enlarge (Via Boing Boing):

(As an aside: Has anyone noticed how that standard three-word instruction for making a picture bigger sounds like an obscene spam email?)

Monday, March 20, 2006

Alonzo decoded

Came across this site while looking for movie links today. And it's a good thing I did, too. Now I know what my name would stand for if I were a Monster or a Cyborg:

Anthropologist-Lacerating, Orphan-Nabbing Zombie of Oblivion

Artificial Lifeform Optimized for Nocturnal Zoology and Observation

Aaaaaaallmost half, but not quite

So, out of the Top 100 Overlooked Films of the 1990s (according to the Online Film Critics Society), I have seen 49 of them. Still a pretty good record, but it looks like I need to add a lot more to my Blockbuster account queue.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Russian Ingenuity

A positive, craft-related post to end the week on (via Need Coffee): It's a Russian Blog that features some unusual handicrafts including way-cool action figures made entirely of wire:

And then on the weirder side is an item that was either (a) manufactured by someone who has a lot of spare time and skill saw blades on his hands or (b) created by someone who believes even their three-year-old should help out in tilling the garden. You decide:

Have a good weekend, folks.

Cheap Shot Friday

Via Media Matters:
On the March 8 edition of the AFA Report, Donald E. Wildmon, founder and chairman of the American Family Association (AFA), responded to the "Equality Ride", a seven-week bus tour of 32 young adults organized by gay rights organization Soulforce "to confront nineteen religious schools and military academies that ban the enrollment of GLBT [gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender] students." Wildmon proposed his own hypothetical trip to "the homosexual bathhouses," saying, "[W]e're going to confront these people ... for what they're doing." In a discussion with Ed Vitagliano, news editor of the American Family Association Journal, Fred Jackson, AFA news director, and Rusty Benson, Journal associate editor, Wildmon also repeated misinformation about average gay incomes -- while falsifying his own -- claiming, "[T]he average homosexual makes four times more than I do." The AFA Report is broadcast daily on the AFA-operated American Family Radio.
Yeah, that's a shame, Mr. Wildmon. I guess "Professional Irritant" doesn't pay as well as it used to.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Sun Tzu on Tantrum Throwing

Blah3 had some nice commentary on Bush's speech today and his complaints about the insurgents' tactics:
"Of course the insurgents won't expose themselves to superior firepower and a situation that will end with their death. But pass the word to Bush that he was the one who elected to start this thing, and it stands to the most rudimentary reason that if you go into a country to fight that country's people, you will be fighting on their terms."

"Oh, wait. I'm sure 'no one could have anticipated' that situation."
All of this reminded me of some things I've read about the French and Indian War. Here's a little history lesson courtesy of GlobalSecurity.org:

British troops under the command of General Edward Braddock joined George Washington at Fort Duquesne. The British general expected to fight the way battles were fought in Europe with troops lined up on open fields and firing their weapons as they marched toward each other. The French and their Indian allies refused to fight in this manner, preferring instead to hide in the woods, donning clothes that made them difficult to see and shooting at British troops from behind the cover of trees.
Looks like the British were outmoded by the tactics. Looks like the same thing is happening to us. And the solution that Bush has for all this: To go on national television and bitch to us about it. Bold move there, George. We'll be winning again in no time.

Attack of the Castaway Revisionist Blondes!

Oooookay then.

When Maggie Grace from Lost decides to make a feature film, she chooses a remake of the John Carpenter horror classic The Fog.

When Emile De Ravin from Lost decides to make a feature film, she chooses a remake of the Wes Craven horror classic The Hills Have Eyes.

My smart ass comment that would normally follow would be to say Cynthia Watros is bound to sign on to so-and-so horror remake any day now, but it seems every classic horror title I come upon in IMDb has already been remade within the past 10 years or is currently in production.

The only one I came across that hasn't is Poltergeist.

Doh! Now I've done it! Well, if somebody decides to remake this one too, then please give Craig T. Nelson a cameo. He deserves some work after his great job in The Incredibles.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Welcome to the world of MP3's!

Yes, I'm waaaaay behind on this one.

Not to MP3's themselves, or course, but rather MP3 players. I decided recently that, since I have a $100 overtime check coming that I would join the rest of the free world and get one.

After researching different models for four or five hours (Excessive? Hey, I'm a Librarian. It's what I do), I suddenly realized that my Palm Zire 31 can play MP3's with the addition of a memory expansion card. So, I ordered a One Gig card through Amazon, it came three days later, I monopolized the computer much to Mrs. Mosley's chagrin and ... Wallah! An MP3 player! And at a cost of about $50.

Granted, my Palm is not nearly as tricked out as an Ipod, but it suffices for my needs. I've uploaded 250 of my favorite tracks so far and still have about a third of the card's space left. Since it's tradition to share one's playlists on blogs, I thought I'd hit the shuffle button and let you folks know the first ten that come up:

Take Five - The Dave Brubeck Quartet
Pleasantville Soundtrack

Vertigo (Prelude) - Bernard Herrmann
Herrmann/Hitchcock: A Partnership in Terror

Give My Love to Rose - Johnny Cash
American IV: The Man Comes Around

Let it Be - The Beatles
The Beatles 1

I Won't Back Down - Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
Greatest Hits

I'm Going Slightly Mad - Queen
Classic Queen

On the Bound - Fiona Apple
When the Pawn...

Tank! (TV Edit) - Yoko Kanno & the Seatbelts
Cowboy Bebop CD Box

Be Careful What You Eat - Animaniacs
Steven Spielberg Presents Animaniacs

My Favorite Things - John Coltrane
American Splendor Soundtrack

Why don't I go back where I came from ...

... that is if by "came from" you mean "where several of my distant descendants originally lived".

Which country should you REALLY be living in?

The United Kingdom

You have pride in yourself and pride in your country. You believe that history and culture is an important factor to the future of your country, and that traditions and values should be upheld. You love your scones and tea, and reading soppy romance novels. The UK is where you should be...

Click Here to Take This Quiz
Brought to you by YouThink.com quizzes and personality

Thursday, March 09, 2006

When Stan Lee meets Rudy Ray Moore

I've been watching it for over a day. Maki has been watching it for weeks. It's now time to share ... The Juggernaut Bitch! (Very Not Safe For Work with much profanity)

"This is a Dodge!"


I was recently reminded of a website I discovered several years ago called Despair.com. It truly is one of the slickest, funniest sites on the web, particularly if you work in an office setting. I originally found out about them through a postcard inside a magazine. I still have it above my desk and it remains one of my favorites:

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Read 'em and weep

To those Libertarians out there who would follow George Bush into the mouth of Hell itself (and, trust me, he's leading you there), I'd like to relay the revised Bush Bill of Rights as presented by Slate:

Libertarians are supposed to defend our individual rights. In this respect, they have a lot in common with the President they love: Both are piss poor at their job.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

What's the Cheese-to-Ginseng ratio in that stuff?

Submitted without comment ... except for the smart ass post title, of course:

Steven Seagal's Lightning Bolt!

(This link is safe for work, though your head may explode from the sight of it.)

Monday, March 06, 2006

A Double Dose of Kinkade

First, a rather unfortunate article about the "Painter of Light" from the Los Angeles Times. Here's an excerpt:
And then there is Kinkade's proclivity for "ritual territory marking," as he called it, which allegedly manifested itself in the late 1990s outside the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim.

"This one's for you, Walt," the artist quipped late one night as he urinated on a Winnie the Pooh figure, said Terry Sheppard, a former vice president for Kinkade's company, in an interview.

And then there's this sampling from Something Awful with photoshop alterations of Kinkades' paintings. My Favorite:

Friday, March 03, 2006

"I need a lift in your el truck-o to the next town-o!"

I'm currently listening to the audiobook version of Coldheart Canyon by Clive Barker. Being that it's about Hollywood, there's a lot of jibes about how superficial and boneheaded the business can be. After awhile, one has to eventually ask, "Is it really all that bad?"

Oooh, I think it can be (via Coming Soon):

Warner Bros. Pictures has acquired the rights to sci-fi book The Sparrow for Brad Pitt's Plan B and Industry Entertainment to produce, reports Variety. Pitt has a longtime interest in the project, a potential starring vehicle for him.

Screenwriter Michael Seitzman (North Country) is adapting Mary Doria Russell's debut novel of the same name. The project was originally set up at Universal, but Warners picked up the rights to the book after Universal let them lapse.

The story revolves around a Jesuit priest who accompanies a crew of space travelers to a distant planet after Earth receives its first communication from an alien culture. The clergyman and crew befriend one of the planet's two races, unwittingly provoking a bloody war and shaking the foundations of the priest's faith.
A little backstory here: The Sparrow originally came out in 1997 and quickly became one of my very favorite books, Sci-Fi or otherwise. They soon started talking about a movie version when Antonio Banderas bought the rights. The author, on her website, actually invited people to send in casting suggestions for the characters. I did so, and I immediately received a reply from the author chatting about what I had written. Very cool.

But the years passed, Antonio went on and did other things and now ... it's come to this. I went back to see what was on Russell's website and found an update from her. She mostly discusses the script, which I suppose is understandable, and how the most important portions of the plot will hopefully be retained from the book. She doesn't mention anything about Pitt.

When I first emailed her years ago, I recommended a lesser known actor named Alfred Molina to play Emilio Sandoz. Now, after his turn as Doc Ock in Spiderman 2, Molina would be an even stronger choice for the role. I also conceded that, though Banderas wasn't exactly how the character was described, he could probably pull it off just fine.

But now it's neither Alfred nor Antonio. It's Brad. Brad Pitt.

Nothing is set in stone, of course, and his main involvement right now is through his production company, but this news really disturbs me. Pitt playing a Puerto Rican Jesuit priest simply doesn't cut it. Of course, Emilio in the book is just charismatic as all hell, and that's no doubt what they'll focus on if Pitt is chosen. But his star power is not enough to pull it through.

Let me put it this way, Brad. Charlton Heston wasn't able to pull of a Hispanic character. Neither, for my money, did Marlon Brando. Don't make the same mistake. Go ask Antonio or Alfred or even a TV star like Jimmy Smits (who is, whadayaknow, half Puerto Rican!) to play Emilio. Be content in your role as producer and leave it at that.

If you do that, then I promise to pay full price to see Oceans 13 (now that's a sacrifice).

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Bush's Pontius Pilate moment

Oh, ain't this grand:

President Bush on Tuesday decried the latest surge in sectarian violence in Iraq and declared that for Iraqis "the choice is chaos or unity."
Good Christian that he is, he's deciding to metaphorically wash his hands of the matter before it all completely goes to Hell. Too bad he didn't read more Shakespeare and less King James, because his guilt isn't as easily disposed as he would like. Read your Macbeth, George, and keep an eye out for moving trees around the White House.

Lost in Translation

Having my own non-profit directory project that I work on, I can appreciate this effort by these three Japanese fans to create a database of information called "The Jazz Discography Project" (Found via Metafilter).

However, I must take issue with their choice of URL: www.jazzdisco.org. The unfortunate title abbreviation brings to mind some horrid fusion project that would surely rip a hole in the time/space continuum.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Forest Whitaker Quote of the Month: March 2006

Not much set up for this month's quote, which is from the David Fincher thriller Panic Room. I will say that Whitaker's character, a security expert named Burnham, speaks for audience members as well as himself when he lectures his stupid partner about using blunt force against the title encasement:
Burnham: "This is what I do; if some idiot with a sledgehammer could break in do you really think I'd still have a job?"