Slacker   


Usually I spend my Thursday nights scouring the web to find interesting things to amuse and entertain you folks (such is my dedication...or lack of social life). But last night, quite frankly, all I wanted to do was play Sim City 4. So I did.

Which means I didn't go link hunting.

But fear not...I have a few fun pages in my daily reading queue that haven't made the sidebars yet (Blogger can't seem to display my template for me these days...), so I present them to you today for your perusing pleasure:



Also worth checking out is Nobody Here (found on the above mentioned Fiendish is the Word). I haven't had the chance to explore the site fully yet, but I can tell already that its hella cool.

Blech. Work. Suppose I should go and get dressed.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, May 30, 2003
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Random Bits and Bobs   


Just sitting here, surfing, drinking some peppermint tea and trying to wind down after watching The Stepford Wives (which never fails to creep me out). And since I am surfing, I thought I'd share some gems with you, Gentle Reader. (And yeah, you Less-Than-Gentle Readers are allowed to look too).



Ok, that's enough sharing for now.


Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, May 29, 2003
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To Boldly Sit on My Couch   


Sorry if you came looking for the Monday Morning Quiz yesterday, but I was celebrating the long, rainy, holiday weekend watching the Star Trek marathon on the Sci-Fi channel, and basically contributing nothing useful to society. Which is not to say I did nothing this weekend. I did finally figure out how to publish the RSS feed for this site (so if you have the knowledge and inclination to use it, knock yourself out), begrudgingly tackled some long overdue housecleaning, and took measurements in the new apartment. (Sadly not as large as remembered, but I still like it.) Oh, and I did finally see the origins of Khan (still young and sexy), and learned all about Gary Seven. So I suppose the weekend was not entirely wasted.


Alas, the long weekend of slacking at home ends so that the shortened work week begins. And if you're not too busy playing catch-up today, here are some silly things to keep you occupied on this Tuesday that feels like a Monday. And because I spent all day today watching James T. Kirk kiss the girls and make them cry, it's going to be Star Trek all the way.


And of course, there is plenty of Star Trek slash fiction out there. But I figure if you know what it is than you know where to find it...and shame on you for reading that sort of thing at work!

Posted by Sarcasmo on Tuesday, May 27, 2003
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And In the Words of Ms. Grundy, "Yowsa!"   


Boogah of gomi no sensi has come through with the Archie vs. Punisher hookup. You can find the full-color PDF on his website.

I am astounded by how much it did not suck.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Saturday, May 24, 2003
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Friday Funtime   


It's still Thursday night and already I'm jonesing for the 5:00 whistle. And then hellllooooo long weekend.

Till then, here's some mindless entertainment:

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, May 23, 2003
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Tee Hee Hee   


I know, I know, it's hideous and wrong. But this week's Her! completely cracks me up.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, May 22, 2003
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Bye, Bye Buffy   


(SPOILER ALERT: If you haven't seen the final episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and you intend to, skip this post. There are spoilers ahead.)


I
've been a long-time watcher of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and like fans the world over, I am heartbroken to see the series end.


I'll be honest; ours hasn't been a storybook romance. I am (believe it or not) a huge fan of the ultra-campy Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie, and refused to belive that anyone could fill the shoes of Kristy Swanson, Paul Reubens, Luke Perry, Rutger Hauer and Donald Sutherland. I stubbornly boycotted the show for the entire first season.


Eventually I did watch...and I loved it. I watched in secret, sure that my peers would mock me for watching a show that was clearly targeted at 14-year old boys. Silly me. In the end, it turned out we all were quietly watching.


In the beginning, I was a devoted fan. I sat down specifically to watch each week. However, the show and I soon began having philosophical differences. The trouble started when Angel came back from Hell. When Buffy killed him at the end of Season 2, I was devastated. It caused me physical pain to watch. So when they casually brought him back to star in his own series, I felt emotionally manipulated and violated. It's amazing how a little thing like resurrection can cheapen the sacrifice of life to something silly and maudlin.


As far as I'm concerned, Angel stayed dead. I consider future story lines that contain him to be out of canon. (And it's a good thing I don't watch Angel too, because if what I hear about next season is true, Spike's final act of redemption gets to be added to the "not-so-much-of-a-big-deal-if-they-can-just-bring-you-back-from-the-undead-whenever" file).


From the first resurrection on in, my relationship with Buffy became fleeting. I missed new episodes in pursuit of other interests, keeping up with her exploits through word-of-mouth and re-runs.


Then I saw the episode The Body, which is by far, one of the best things I have ever seen on television. I became hooked again.


When I consider The Body (which wasn't remotely about vampires, evil, or hot British sidekicks) and the rather empty feeling I was left with after last night, I realize what I will miss both about Buffy; the stories about the mundane aspects of the characters lives. It's a bit like having a friend you keep up with for years and years (even if you don't talk as often as you like), and then suddenly, they leave. You find yourself wondering from time to time how they are, what they've done, do they sometimes think of you?


I was there with Buffy and the gang for high school, their prom, sexual awakening, college exams, several Apocalypses (can there be plural Apocalypse?), family squabbles, death, broken hearts, fashion faux pas, hamburger-slinging and army raising. I am indescribably disappointed that I won't get to see what happens next.


I think if there had been a bit more denouement, or even a Where-are-they-now/Animal House-style ending, I would have felt more satisfied.


If I were to go the slightly cynical route (sorry Alex, I just can't help it), I might conceive that Buffy and Co. are so used to do-gooding and meddling that they gather the remaining Slayerettes, start their own army, and start policing the mortals of the world "for their own good." You might laugh, but you know they could do it. This season they proved the uncanny ability to either kidnap or lure young girls from their parents and train them to be powerful killing machines. These girls who have suddenly received this influx of power will be looking for answers, for a purpose, for a leader. And what their army can't handle, Willow certainly can. They would be benevolent, of course, in the way the Federation is benevolent (the sort of we know what's best for everyone, so do what we say, don't interfere in what we want to do, and we'll leave you and your civilization mostly untouched). Who could stop them? Let's face it, when you've spent most of your life fighting Great Evil, you don't just retire to a life of of sunshine and shuffleboard...or considering the gangs average age...9-5 drudgery and MTV. If you did, most of the DC and Marvel universe would have retired years ago. How can they stop? Sure Xander has his construction work and Willow her l337 skillz, but for the most part, none of them can do anything else.


The less cynical side of me (she's there, she just doesn't talk much) thinks the likely follow-up is that Giles, Dawn, and Principal Wood recruit and train new Watchers, who will in turn find the new Slayers of the world and protect and train them. Andrew will no doubt stay by them; being at once helpful and irritating. (Besides, no way Giles will let him leave until his dwarf levels up and can fight!). Without depth perception, Xander is not likely to return to his career in construction. I think instead he will stay close to Buffy, doing what he can to care for her more mundane worries while she continues to fight her fights. Although words do not come easily to him, when she dies (and stays dead once and for all), he write the history of her exploits like a one-eyed Doctor Watson; and because he writes it not with skill but with heart, he will inspire the world. Willow, having experienced the positive energy available to her with her awesome power, will do good works, trying desperately to attain peace and finally forgive herself her transgressions. Cults to her and her power will spring up in every place she visits. Her openness and goofy charm will be remembered by every life she touched. Thanks to her power, she will live well beyond the normal mortal years, passing on only when the painful weight of watching those she loved die finally becomes to much for her heart to bear. And Buffy---well, Buffy keeps fighting. That's what she does. That's what she'll always do. And when she can fit it in, she'll finally start living too.


If anyone has an alternate future history, please post it. I'll take my closure any way I can get it.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, May 21, 2003
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There's nary a stormtrooper alive that can outrun a greased Scotsman   


The Star Wars Photoshopping Gallery.

I am seriously considering getting one of these t-shirts so I can be the coolest nerd at the ball...

- Discovered on Fun Junkie

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 19, 2003
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Am I Easily Amused? You Bet I Am!   


Move Your Feet. (Requires download).

- Via Buffoonery.org

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 19, 2003
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Inevitable Progression   


No one I know seems to wear watches anymore. Ask any one in my peer group what time it is, and you'll likely see one or more of us fumbling in our pockets for our cell phones in order to tell you. Apparently we aren't the only ones; check out Wristmoto. (Here is where knowing Japanese would be helpful, because I could then translate some of the text for you. Thankfully, the pictures are fairly self-explanatory.)

- Found on Die Puny Humans

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 19, 2003
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What Do You Mean the Weekend is Over All Ready? I Just Got Comfortable   


It both amazes and disturbs me how easily I can eschew my bourgeois up-bringing and embrace decadence and luxury. Pop Culture Boy and I spirited ourselves away to a swanky hotel this weekend to celebrate our anniversary; and it was only a matter of hours between me wanting to keep the room straightened so as to not burden housekeeping and telling PCB to call the concierege to come up and open the tv armoire because I was already warm and comfy in the bed. (Not to worry, I got up and did it myself; but I must admit I whined about it a bit.) We also treated each other to hot towel full body massages; basically it involved oil infused hot towels being applied to various areas of the body, and then having those body parts massaged.. It was essentially being bathed and then covered in scenceted oils. I felt like royalty, and I am almost ashamed to admit that I really enjoyed it.


But, alas, home again (and happy to be so). And, with real life comes responsibility; Monday morning and the work week cannot be avoided. And so, the Monday Morning line-up, for your goofing-off pleasure:




And now I'd like to end with a very special note to the loud, pretentious folks at the next table at the hotel restaurant when PCB and I decided to play grown-up and have a nice dinner: When you spend the whole evening trying to wave your affluence and social status around; spending the last 20 minutes of your dinner conversation quibbling over and announcing the total amount of your check will always destroy the illusion. Also--loudly demanding that your already embarrassed, pre-teen son tell everyone how many times a day you kiss him will not endear your child (or anyone one else) to you. And most of all, the gentlemen who exploded after eating a wafer thin mint appeared in Monty Python's Meaning of Life, not Monty Python and the Holy Grail (you cultural baboons). I could see one of you making the mistake, but for two of you to come to the same conclusion separately is simply unforgivable, unless you can point out to me the passage in the History of the Kings of Britain where Sir Lancelot gorges himself then vomits copiously on the cleaning woman in an uptown French restaurant. (Oh, sure, you may argue that Galahad also didn't ever visit the castle Anthrax to be but a bevy of buxom blondes, but that is entirely besides the point). If I had fewer manners (or more drinks) there might have been trouble.


Grumble grumble.


Where's that darn concierge. I need another massage. Sigh.


Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 19, 2003
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The Waiting is the Hardest Part   


I
'll admit it, technology has ruined me. The high-speed internet, microwave ovens, On-Demand movies, "personal body massagers", digital cameras, on-line banking, 24-hour convenience stores*; I've become desperately suited to instant gratification. Yet now I find myelf with not one, but two future events that I am anxious to get started. Yet cursed time marches steadily on and refuses to go double time.


Stupid consistent passage of time.



  1. Moving: Yes, that's right. Pop Culture Boy and I are finally getting out of our cramped, over-priced highrise and into a spacious, moderately priced, two-story apartment in the heart of our fair city.


    I'm a little sad to be leaving our current abode; we've lived here about 6 years, and I worked for the management office for 5. We'll be leaving behind a great view, elevators, a fantastic "f*** you!" lobby (the property was a premiere hotel in its heyday), and knowing most of our 400+ neighbors (who still pester me with questions even though I haven't worked for the building for several years) by name. On the plus side, I am looking forward to the oodles of space, the lack of street noise, the money left over at the end of the month, having a second floor, and not having (and especially not knowing) 400+ neighbors. The last bit will warm my pounding, strained, out-of-shape heart every time I drag the laundry up and down the five stories between the basement laundry room and our new apartment.


    Actually, PCB and I fell in love with the apartment the moment we stepped foot inside it. It's in an old brownstone here in town, which was once both a private house and (I recently discovered through the wonders of the World Wide Web) a seminary. As an atheist and agnostic respectively (I won't commit to atheism until someone masters a way to prove an absolute negative), we can't decide if that is a drawback or a bonus. It's a great older space with lots of light and character. We'll be gaining an eat in kitchen (fitting two people in our current kitchen is nothing short of miraculous, and that can only be accomplished if the parties agree to only move one at a time in a strange, almost choreographed fashion), a mantle (the fireplace is boarded up, boo!) and a second floor. It was only the 3rd apartment we saw that day, and no discussion was needed. He looked at me, I nodded, and he told the agent we'd take it. Hey, we may be flighty, but we know what we want and we aren't afraid to say it.


    Now that the apartment is secured, I can't wait to move. I've arranged and rearranged our furniture in my mind. I've hosted parties where people can actually get up and walked around. I've been eyeing an electric piano because I'll finally have the space for it. I've virtually written countless brilliant pieces in my new office space. I find myself absently humming/singing the Barenaked Ladies Old Apartment song when at home.


    To make matters somewhat worse, we've hired professionals to pack and move us. (this will make sure my marriage stays intact. The last time we moved, just from one floor to another in the same building, we nearly killed one another. Suffice it to say we both have strong personalities and differences of opinions about what is important to do when.) This means that there isn't really anything I can do by way of preparation; in my mind, the move is currently without motion. Sure, we cleaned out our closets last night, and that felt a little like progress (although it just looked like a mess), but the more time I spend in our current digs, the more dissastified with it I become. Conversely, I keep making the new place more fabulous and amazing with each reminisence. In my imagination it has taken on near palatial proportions; the rooms are cavernous, the neighbors are kind anrd quiet, the light all comes from the West and is white and pure. If we don't get in there soon, I am bound to be devestated when the movers don't drop all our stuff off at the Taj Mahal.


    Sadly, the current tenant is there for several more weeks, and then the apartment needs to be painted and cleaned. Curse her, her personal life, her schedule and her cute kitties! Doesn't she know she is styming my life? Some people (and cats) can be so inconsiderate.

  2. Sarcasmo and Pop Culture Boy Are Going to Japan: I know, I know, it sounds like a very special episode of The Facts of Life or MTV's The Real World (and to be honest, it feels a bit like one), but I assure you it's true! My brother-in-law is an army man, and he and my sister are currently stationed outside of Tokyo; giving me the perfect excuse to visit Japan (something I've wanted to do for quiet some time). I have, of course, learned all of 4 words to help me get by when I get there (O-hi-o: Good morning; Moshi-Moshi: (telephone greeting); Kay-ti-ben-wa: Cell phone (of course mine won't work there, so when will I get to say Moshi-Moshi?), and Ramen: you know what it is. And can you believe they have a museum?)


    I still need to learn the words for action figures, rare collectible, video games, Dance Dance Revolution, I'm sorry for my country's imperialistic foreign policy, and Where can I find the English edition of Shonen Jump? I have until the end of August to do so.


    In all seriousness, I am very really excited to make this trip. Obsessed with the American version of Japanses Pop Culture as I am, Japan has long been on my destination list. Previously, I used my sibs being stationed in Germany as an excuse to make a long-awaited trek to Europe (which included Germany (the Motherland), France (where high school French actually paid off), Belgium (land of beer and chocolate) and Amsterdam (where my sisters and I may have passed up an exciting travel adventure; choosing safety and comfort over the possibility of being killed in our sleep and dropped in the river). I absolutely adored the trip (although being just one week it was much too short), and would go back in a split second if the opportunity arose.


    I have decided that they need to stay in the military long enough to be stationed in or near India, England, and anywhere in Africa so I have an excuse to visit those countries as well....



Alas, with security deposit paid, movers hired and tickets ordered, all I can do is wait. And wait and wait and wait.


Argh.


*(You may note the glaring absence of instant coffee, teabags and individually wrapped cheese slices from this list, but I assure you they were omitted with great deliberation; quality coffee, tea and cheese are well worth the wait.)

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, May 14, 2003
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Let's Face It, Someone Had to Say It   


Happy Fun Pundit:Top Ten Things I Hate About Star Trek.

One thing I'd like to add as an addition to this list: Picard should have been given a desk job. I love the thinking man's captain as much as the next gal, but let's be practical. The man has had his brain hijacked by (at the very least) the Borg, and an alien probe. When your brain is turned to mush, you really shouldn't be commanding a Federation Starship.


Of course, I must admit, I'm a wee bit partial to Captain James T. Kirk, and he didn't exactly play by the rules either.


Criminey. Such a nerd am I.


- Found on Yourish.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Tuesday, May 13, 2003
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Just Because I Like Goofy Flash Animation   


Mega Happy Flash Battle.
- Found on The Tower of Hubris.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 12, 2003
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The Drama, The Music, The Rage   


L
ast Thursday was Pop Culture Boy's first performance with his new band. He only had the benefit two rehearsals with them before the show, and I know he was a bit nervous. Still, we trudged down to the bar, accordion in tow, both excited and anxious for the night to begin.


PCB and company were scheduled to play during the house band's breaks (more on the house band later). When we arrived, the house band was already on stage, Behind the Music flashback scenario was unfolding in the back room. The neck on the bass had been damaged while it had been stored at the bar; the bass was un-tuneable and unplayable; and they were due on stage in an hour. The entire band was up in arms. The bass served as both their bass sound and percussion; the debate raged as to whether or not they would be able to go on. Harsh words were said on both sides; the bass player was understandably upset, the damage was expensive, and he wanted to perform as much as the rest. He left suddenly, broken bass in tow. The rest of the band went through various stages of anger, upset, and panic. The bass player was alternately cursed and forgiven, cheered for and denounced. Tensions mounted. The other girls and I talked quietly and smoked nervously on the sidelines.


(It is very weird for me to be in a social situation where I am relegated to gather with the other women, rather than hang out with the boys. I don't dislike it, necessarily, but I must admit I feel a bit out of my element there.)


At the last minute, the bass player returned with a borrowed upright bass, and with frayed nerves and frowns they were finally able to go on.


At this point, I think its important for me to tell you about the bar, its patrons, and the house band.


It's a family bar; the current owner is the youngest son of the bar's eponymous founder, and I would estimate him to be approximately 70 years old. The house band (known to others as the Rage Band, but I prefer to call them the Old Man Band) is made up of him and about a dozen of his friends, and they play standards, top forty classics, rock hits of the 70s, and basically ham it up to the a degree that is almost criminal. They are great fun to listen to and to watch.


A tiny white-haired man sat with a video camera, filming the owner's energetic (albeit bizarre) gestures as he sang. The crowd loved him, and he clearly loved them back.


The audience, crammed tightly into one corner of the bar to accommodate the massive band set-up, seemed to be made-up mostly of folks who could have been the owner's childhood friends. Some of them were so worn looking that you could believe they have been in the bar their whole lives, sitting in that same seat, drinking that same drink, smoking that same cigarette.


In fact, the entire bar seemed full of surreal characters, as though a writer's convention got together and populated the bar with people lurking in the corners of their imagination: the police academy student who once did time in prison, is covered in tattoos, and loves old MGM musicals; the quiet man who hears voices; the old woman who swears prolifically and insults everyone; the polite, kind young man who loves the bluegrass band, and has to be escorted home at evening's end because the drugs he takes leaves him confused and disoriented, (but without them becomes suicidal); the heating and AC man who is perpetually covered in a veneer of grease that has set in his pores, can't see well due to his cataracts, hates the rich doctor's wife (who always try to cheat him), and who that night was sporting a fresh cigarette burn on his hand that he seemed not to notice or care about; the brash young girl with the Betti Page vibe who lets everyone know she is part of this community, yet unquestionably above them all; the screaming Elvis fan, who laughed loudly and inappropriately, played Elvish on the jukebox all night once the bands stopped playing, and couldn't stop pawing her 80 year old boyfriend; the giggly, bubbly blonde who squealed excitedly when she talked, blushed easily, and took lots of pictures of everyone. My current favorite, however, is the wizened old man with the long, wiry, grey beard and the dust settled in his wrinkles, who sat in the back room wearing his greasy baseball cap and winter coat (for which it was much too warm), drinking and quietly smiling. A young man, another local musician and (presumably) regular was saying to him "I saw you leave the bar through the side door, and come back in through the men's room. I have to ask, are you a wizard?" The wizard just looked at his drink and smiled impishly. I believe it to be true.


It was before this crowd that PCB and the boys filed out and set up. One largish, older, very drunk woman kept screaming out for them to play some Elvis. Tensions being what they were...I am still surprised one of them didn't finally go and strangle her.


Once the music started, however, the band seemed to relax and go with it. All they needed was a cage in front of them, and I could have believed I was at a roadhouse. They hit a few snags in their first set, but for the most part, they really did well. Even the Elvis woman applauded them.


During the last song of their first set, one of the Old Man Band's drummers ; the one who wasn't drawing caricatures of other patrons in the back room, (they have at least two drummers, who switch off) came and sat in. It would have been great except for the fact that he chose to drum as though they were playing swing rather than bluegrass. Still the crowd went absolutely mad for it.


During the Rage band's next set, PCB got the band's revenge; the Old Man Band played a polka, and I jokingly said to PCB, "Now there's a song that needs an accordion." So he picked up his accordion and rushed out to the stage area. (I need to learn to keep some thoughts to myself.) I thought for certain we would be kicked out, the bluegrass band not allowed to play anymore, and PCB strung up by his band mates. Instead, the Old Man Band put a microphone in front of his accordion, and made him play out the short remainder of the set. After the set they spoke with him about his instrument; several of them had played accordion in their youths, and they were completely tickled to see a young man with one slung over his shoulders.


The bluegrass band's next two sets went well; but more entertaining for me was the private hell PCB made for himself. (Is it evil of me to love him so much, and to gleefully enjoy seeing him suffer? Shrug. Oh well).


Between the band's 2nd and 3rd sets, while the stress from the bass incident was threatening to lead to fisticuffs and the Old Man Band was back on stage, the girls and I went outside for a chat (forget talking in that space while a band is playing, you can barely hear your own thoughts). When I came back in, I searched the back room for PCB, only to discover him back on stage, playing with the Old Man Band, looking a bit lost and forlorn. I caught his eye and shook my head, laughing. He mouthed to me, his eyes desperate and pleading, "They won't let me leave," his lips said. He explained later that he went out to the bar to get a drink during the break, his accordion strung over his shoulder (he refused to put it down all night, (possibly in light of the bass incident), afraid that someone would accidentally kick it or knock it over). Instead of getting a soda, he was pulled up on stage to play the whole set. Each time he tried to leave, the little man in the felt oompah band hat (who, among other things, performed the amazing feat of playing two saxophones at once) kept telling him to stay. If PCB moved to a different part of the stage area, the little man wasn't far behind with a microphone to put in front of him. PCB gestured for me to come out and sit in the audience, and so I went out, laughing, and watched him play Hot, Hot, Hot, On the Way to Cape May (the more ribald version), Come Sail Away, and more.


Despite his complaining, I can assure you he really enjoyed it. He jumped up and down, pulled faces like the rest of them, and glowed light he was lit up from the inside. And let me tell you something ladies, you really haven't experiences anything until the man you love crosses the stage area during a song, does the Chuck Berry walk to your seat (with an accordion, natch), then straddles your lap while he plays. Really. It is (in a very twisted view of the afterlife) heaven. Bubbling, Squealing girl even tried to get a picture, but PCB moved too fast for her. She took a candid of me grinning goofily instead.


After the set ended, I heard the little man casually invite PCB to play with the Old Man Band if he had the weekend free. PCB politely declined, and later swore to me he doesn't plan to play with them again at the next show; it was just too much (he was pale and exhausted by night's end - that accordion is heavy), but I suspect when the time comes, his actions will prove otherwise. He was simply having too much fun not to try it again.


And remembering him up there rockin' out with the Old Man Band, I cannot stop laughing.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 12, 2003
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Rainy Days and Mondays   


B
lech. The weather here has been a combination of rainy, muggy, and foggy for nigh a week. It has sucked my will to do anything apart from stay in bed with my head under the covers. But it is Monday after all. And I have to get out of bed anyway.


Here's some silly stuff to make Monday more bearable.




Hope y'all have a good Monday. And that the rain clears.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, May 11, 2003
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I See Dead People, and They Have Ingrown Toenails   


Just an update concerning the Podiatrist/Corpse conversation a few weeks back.

Had the opportunity to speak to the podiatry student again, who thankfully seemed amused and intersted in my question rather than horrified by it (which, in most social situations, is a good thing). According to her, they learn general anatomy initially. Therefore they have an entire cadaver, and concentrate mainly on the "genitals upwards." In the following unit, they get the legs (sawed off at the hip) of a corpse, and as the focus of the studies concetrates more and on the feet, they are just given an individual foot (not the full set, as I earlier surmised).

Just wanted to give you all the update. I'd hate to think confusion about the politics of corpse feet were keeping folks up at night.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, May 11, 2003
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NO NO NO NO NO NO NO!   


Color me disgruntled. I just read that the Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events film adaptation is being re-written by Robert Gordon (Galaxy Quest and Men in Black II), and will feature Jim Carey.


What makes these books great (and so popular with children and adults alike) is Daniel Handler's wit and humor, as well as his willingness to address children as though they have a brains and fertile imaginations. These films should be dark and sharp...I have nothing against Jim Carey or Robert Gordon--but wth these names attached I can only forsee childish and silly.


An unfortunate turn of events indeed.


-Found on BoingBoing.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, May 09, 2003
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Some Comic Book Crossovers are Just a Bad Idea   


Like this one (and it's real?!?): Archie Meets the Punisher.

My brain hurts. I mean more than usual.

Discovered on gomi no sensi.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Tuesday, May 06, 2003
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Back to the Grind   


I know, I know. I should have been asleep over an hour ago. But when you spend the bulk of your evening negotiating safe passage with goblins, and battling mysterious cloaked figures during what was meant to be some harmless breaking and entering, it can be difficult to unwind.

So, in lieu of sleep I bring you Monday Morning Amusements.



Stupid mysterious cloaked figures. Sarcasmo needs coffee.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, May 05, 2003
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I Read the News Today, Oh, Boy..   


But apparently David Murray didn't.

While Murray is threatening retailiation if Canada decriminalizes marijuana, the Guardian is reporting that pot is among the United States' largest exports.

Talk about Wooden-Beam-in-the-Eye Syndrome.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, May 04, 2003
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Free Comic Book Da-a-a-a-ay Wrap-Up   


S
adly another Free Comic Book Day has passed. But what a day it was! Our party's 11 hour trek (which started with breakfast at the diner and ended with a yummy Vietnamese dinner) was a triumph of free comics and rampant consumerism. (After all, even though some of the comics were free, most comics and other comic related items were not.) Over all, we hit four stores, and spent money at three (reason why will be clear soon). Between just Pop Culture Boy and myself, we scored a total of 28 different free titles (we also ended up with many duplicates, of course, which we will distribute to friends who could not join us), a slew of new comics, a Batman t-shirt (mine), a Kyle Rayner statue with removable ring (PCB's. And yes, he is wearing it with his Green Lantern t-shirt today), two sets of super hero coasters, some magnets, lots of laughter and singing, and very full bellies. And I know someone who's Wonder Woman memorabilia collection grew considerably yesterday (and who probably shouldn't click that Wonder Woman link).


I really love the idea of Free Comic Book day--and free comics in general. I think it benefits the fans as well as the industry. And in that vein, I'd like to give props to the following store we visited for participating and being generally cool:




An extra special thank you to Atomic City who really went the extra mile. Not only did they customize your free comic selections based on your personal preferences; they also provided other free titles provided by independent artists, held a raffle (which we were sadly too early to attend), and held other special events through the day. Also, their free comic book goodie bags included additional titles from major labels (provided free, even though they were not on the free list), various Free Comic Book Day pins and paraphernalia, and an Incredible Hulk Hero Clicks figurine. It was like Christmas morning. It's this sort of dedication to comic book and comic book customers that keeps PCB and me returning to Atomic City again and again. (Well, that and our need for new comic books!)


And an extra special thanks for nothing to Out of Time Comics, who despite being on the official list, and having told someone in our party that they would be participating in Free Comic Book Day earlier that week, recanted when we got there. Too bad for them. There were quite a number of us and we spent none of our money there. They are definitely on Sarcasmo's boycott list for a while. If I weren't so gosh darn lazy, they'd be getting an angry letter as well.


So, it is with a heavy heart and a large stack of comics I bid farewell to another Free Comic Book Day...but I am looking forward to next year!

Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, May 04, 2003
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Today   


Is Free Comic Book Day! Hooray!

Posted by Sarcasmo on Saturday, May 03, 2003
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It's All Part Of My Rock-n-Roll Fantasy   


W
hen I was in high school, I was convinced that when I settled down to marry, I would marry a musician (this, of course, came after the Johnny Depp Debacle. Hey, I was young. I bounced back). I pictured myself writing in my office, he would come in with a cup of tea for me, kiss me silently on the head, then go back to his in-home studio to work on music. (In this particular scenario, the part of the musician/husband was played by Mags, the keyboard player for A-ha.)


My spending money was divided between pleasure reading and concert going; and most concerts involved bands with longer and prettier hair that I could ever hoped to have. Friends and I were regulars at the Empire, an all-ages hard rock club. We became devoted fans of Heaven's Edge, a local band who played there nigh weekly; and who, like Tommy Conwell of Young Rumblers fame, completely lost their edge and fire when a record company finally picked them up and over produced them. (I have heard that Tommy Conwell is now an elementary school teacher. Lost track of Heaven's Edge years ago.)


At major venues I saw Ratt, Britney Foxx, Poison, Guns N' Roses (the original line up, back when they were great), Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne (before he went into rehab; and he was awful. It was 2 hours of Zack Wilde posing on guitar and showing off how he could play while spitting up into the air and catching it back in his mouth. I was bitterly disappointed, because I was obsessed with the Randy Rhoads Tribute album), Anthrax, Metallica (when they were too hard core to "sell out" and make music videos), Motley Crue, Bon Jovi...well, you get the picture. I was a hair-band girl. And because I wasn't allowed to attend these major venue concerts without adult supervision until I was older, my father endured quite a number of these shows...and he's got the baseball hat and t-shirt collection to prove it.


Also, I was to be the frontman for Vüdü Dähl, an all-girl, hard rock band with more superfluous umlauts than you could shake a drumstick at. We had our albums named: Guys and Dähls, Welcome to the Dähl's House, The Vüdü That We Dü. Unfortunately, our drummer had no drums, and although our lead guitarist got a guitar, she never did learn how to play. Our name looked great scribbled across our high school binders, though.


That being said, I can't say I was all together surprised to find myself in the back room of a bar last night, drinking beer, smoking cigarettes and sitting patiently by with the other "groupies" as Pop Culture Boy practiced (and unbeknownst to him, auditioned) for a local band.


It was a bit suspect, how we ended-up in this well-lit, eponymous bar in South Philly, where the bartender knew everyone by name and the patrons were comfortable enough to bus their own empties and lock-up the back room before leaving.


A friend of ours who we have not seen for some time contacted Pop Culture Boy out of the blue. She's dating a guitarist, and wanted PCB to come down to round out his band. They were looking for someone whose instrument had a very specific sound. And PCB had it.


PCB was a little nervous about playing with a band he never met or practiced with, but also intrigued by the unusual invitation. It was an adventure to which we couldn't say no. When we got there and learned it was only a practice session, not a gig; aPCB relaxed considerably.


When the whole gang was there, we filed into the backroom where I sat between the band members' girlfriends. Over the door, there was a painting a a statue's face, I think it was suppose to be of David. It disturbed me all night with it's lack of pupils.


The guys seemed an unlikely bunch for a band; they didn't even look like the type to be friends: the singer/guitarist with the Buddy Holly glasses and the short-sleeved, button-down shirt; another guitarist, who looked a bit on the granola side; another string player & singer, with long white hair and white eyelashes; the bass player, stripped down to his wife-beaters, his arms and neck covered in tattoos; and PCB, with his Fantastic Four T-shirt and Transformer's club shirt over top.


They smoked continuously, talked about music and weed, and drank Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. Then practice was officially underway. The first song was called, the bass player gave PCB a general overview (the tempo, chord-structure) and told him to jump in. Then it happened:


The room exploded with joyous, toe-tapping Bluegrass music.


Yes, the bass was of the stand-up variety, and the white-haired singer played a gorgeous five-string banjo. And PCB, he was specially recruited for his somewhat unusual instrument...the accordion.


Years ago, PCB was at work talking with a co-worker about music. The co-worker was talking about a song he had been listening to for 10 years (I can only imagine he didn't mean concurrently). PCB couldn't think of a song he could listen to for 10 years..in fact, he could only think of one band he'd listened to for 10 years, They Might Be Giants. He went out that day and bought an accordion.


As is happened, the little Italian man who ran the music store where he purchased the instrument was a consummate accordion player. He loved the accordion, and he couldn't believe that a young man like PCB wanted to buy one. He took the time to teach PCB how to play it before letting him out of the store. (Years later, when Air Canada sacrificed this accordion to the Lost Luggage Gods, PCB returned to the same store to buy a new one. The owner gave him an earful for not treating the first one more carefully. Now when PCB travels with his accordian, he takes it as a carry-on.)


And, of course, PCB took to the accordion like a fish to water. That day in the store was all the formal training he got; and yet last night he did more than keep up with those guys, he blended in, became part of the whole organism. He also plays guitar and piano, and all self-taught. I took piano and violin for years..and although I can play the notes and you would recognize the songs (wincingly, no doubt), what I play isn't music. It's perfunctory. PCB can pick up any instrument and learn to play almost any song, and play it with some heart. It's one of the few things I hate about him.


And for the record, he doesn't use the accordion to play Lady of Spain. He much prefers TV theme songs, and pop hits of the eighties and today.


I never became a rock-n-roll chanteuse, and now, alas, it seems I will never be one of those behind-the-scenes, hard rock women legends. However, this is something I can learn to live with.


When I was a teenager, a petite, hard-looking woman would, for lack of a better description, "hang-out" at Roosevelt Mall every weekend. She always dressed the same all in black; tight band t-shirt and jeans and had two defining accessories: around her neck, a collection of hard-rock back-stage passes so thick I'm surprised she didn't topple over from the weight of them; and a live parrot on her shoulder. We would see her sometimes at the Empire club, and when we saw her at the mall we would seek her out for stories about band members and life back stage. She was always more than happy to oblige.


When we were 16 and 17 we really thought she was cool. We admired her. We looked up to her. We wanted to be like her. Now that I am older, I see her as a sad figure, with nothing for company but back-stage passes for concerts that have already left town, 16-year-old groupie wanna-bes, and a parrot (who probably didn't rock-n-roll).


I bet she could make a fortune selling those old backstage passes on ebay, though.


I really enjoyed watching PCB play. His skill and ability to do and play darn near anything never ceases to amaze me, and best of all, he seemed to be having fun. As an added bonus, the band was good; really good. (Much better than the garage band my friends and I (age 16) smuggled into one girl's basement to practice for a week while her parents were out-of-town. It was tricky explaining their presence to her uncle who surprised us all by showing up to check up on her...although not so difficult as explaining why we almost cracked him in the face with a baseball bat (he let himself in and we thought he was an intruder).)


So, I am more than happy to sit proudly while PCB plays the squeeze box. Afterall, I still get to say "I'm with the band."

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, May 02, 2003
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Practicing Racism at a High School Level   


Maybe it's the lack of coffee, but I just can't get my brain around this.

I'm simply stunned.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, May 02, 2003
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