Monthly Archives: January 2002

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When The Mothman Prophecies comes out on DVD, I'll be sure to at least rent it. No, I didn't like it. I'm hoping for a director's commentary so I can learn what the hell Mark Pennington was trying to do.

Massively incohesive--nay--downright sloppy, Mothman is a wasted concept with a good soundtrack. It's like Pennington learned a mess of cool tricks in film school and decided to try them all at once. The result is a choppy experiment in segues. Scenes were treated like segments of Seinfeld, with shots of whatever and music in between. Lots and lots and tons of unecessary footage. None of it long, but very little of it compelling. Bad editor; no donut.

Frustrating for the viewer, the movie gets so close to being good. It attempts and fails to be a love story. Attempts and fails to be edgy. Attempts and fails to be creepy. Remember Red Leader in Star Wars? He goes in to make the shot just before Luke, and says: "Almost there...almost there..." and then gets blown up. Pennington is almost there.

All that said, the movie has its good bits--they are vignettes drowning in the general mayhem. This is why I will watch for the next Pennington film. After all, he did Arlington Road, for which I have a soft spot. He's hashed out a lot of different ideas in Mothman, and they should be ripe for his next attempt. I just hope he doesn't use more than ten or twenty of them.

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This may well be the most embarrassing entry I've ever made. I hope you're quick, because I might take it back. You see, it's like this:

Jane is starting a new project, and is asking people to dig out their old yearbooks. I gleefully complied (look for my entries later), and in the process of searching for those dusty tomes I found...tapes. Many I can't play because they were created on a four-track mini studio. Most of them contain the most awful songs imaginable. Yes, my songs. There's a reason I quit music, and it's a damned good one: I can't write. Oh, my hooks are fine and my melodies catchy, but eek, what ghastly lyrics. Well, enough ado.

Here's a 2.2Mb mp3 for your listening displeasure. Remember it was taken from a decades-old tape, so the quality is nasty. Sorry, tapes suck. Not that it matters. I admit I like the background vocals (I was so enamoured of singing harmony with myself!), the drum programming, and the baseline. There are good bits, but they're immediately followed by a brisk chaser of mediocre. Ah well.

Let the mocking begin.

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Why would I write about a movie made in 1975? Because dollars to donuts, a lot of folks haven't seen it. Great movies deserve to be discovered, current or not.

Three Days of the Condor is a bit quieter than most spy thrillers. Not much explodes, though a few people do get shot real good-like. Robert Redford plays our bookworm hero--the ultimate geek who defeats the bad guys because he reads everything. He's cool--almost to cool--as he cogitates his way through a maze of counter-plots and untrustworthy characters. In the end, the villains' motivations may strike you as very...familiar.

Understated performances all around; Faye Dunaway and Max von Sydow are particularly charismatic. The engrossing storyline is fast and clear, but never dull. This is a great stay-home-with-popcorn movie, a real treat. Jot it down for the next time you're in the video store.

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Spitting. Gah. Spitting on the sidewalk is easily the most disgusting habit to overtake my fair city during the last decade. It's impossible to go barefoot anywhere, unless you like that slimy feeling. A friend once said to me: "Sometimes, you just have to spit." That's true. I'm astonished and heartened that people who must be fed intravenously are well enough to jog down the waterfront. I admit you might have to spit if you have a respiratory infection. You better damned well keep that to yourself. Seriously, if you're going to share your fluids with me, at least take me to dinner first.

But wait, it gets worse.

Just over the past week, I have observed people taking logger's shots. Nothing says "fuckwit" like blowing out a nostril on the street.

This type of idiocy is why there are stupid, micro-managing laws. I find it incomprehensible that people lack the courtesy to keep their sputum to themselves. So here's my note to spitters (and I'm sure there are friends among them): You look like a grammar-school dropout with a misplaced sense of rebellion. Don't force someone to make a city ordinance about something that should be common sense. Grow up and swallow.

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Okay, everything should work. And it should be all pretty. I even bothered to make the essays consistent with the rest of the site.

The redesign is the result of a couple of things. I had to buy a new monitor, so I couldn't afford to upgrade Paul and get MT going for him. Hungry for something to do, I started hammering away here. Also, I was tired of the hard-to-read goth thing. Also...well, that's for the next paragraph:

I'd like to thank:

  • Dave because I started with one of his stylesheets, and learning from it made this site much better.

  • Judith who recommended some excellent color changes.
  • Rod who is now my Typography God.
  • Salt who nudged me to make some layout changes.

I think this is my best design so far. I'm very, very happy with it, and I wasn't before you all pitched in.

Addendum: something is wonky with recent archives. I'll work on it tomorrow.

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"I know all of the lyrics to the R.E.M. song 'It's the end of the world as we know it,' and I can say them in a funny pseudo-german accent."

***

"I can smooch better than anyone, I can make a mean Kraft Dinner, and I'm never afraid to [CENSORED]."

These guys want to be my valentine pretty badly. Think you can compete? The deadline of February 7 is looming. Get thee to the form and tell me why you love me and deserve to be showered with gifts on Valentine's Day.

And to answer an oft-asked question: no, I will never, never, never share your personal information with anyone but the post office. An edited version (as above) of your undying affection may be linked, but that's it. You're safe.