Sunday, September 30, 2012

Shopping

Our meal on Friday night was not great. The food. The service.

We like to support local restaurants, but sometimes they just make it difficult. 710 likes this place for lunch, but somehow it did not transfer to the evening meal.  So yesterday, we went out to lunch. I figure I deserved a better meal - and it was.

Just tacos, but good ones. The Market Garden Brewery has good ones - and no, I did not drink, it was afternoon.  Please people, I'm not a drunk!

But next door was the West Side Market and we stopped by afterwards for some stuff - though ended up buying very little.

I'm at home this week (yayy!), which means not eating out while on the road, and it means cooking, which I enjoy. Anyhoo, I was hoping to try a new soup recipe and went to get some provisions for that. They probably had everything I needed, but it was so frickin' crowded and my patience was wearing thin. So I still need to pick up cheese and some chicken stock (no, I don't care what Ina Garten says, I'm not making my own!).


After that we walked over to a spice store to get some good dried mustard. Even the standard stuff in the grocery is pretty pricey, and this was much more reasonable and you have to figure it was fresher.

So if nothing else, you can expect at least one food blog post this week. It will be a test run for the next time we have folks over. I try never to serve anything new on guests.

That, I did learn from Ina.



Song by:  Duncan Shiek

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Sound-A-Sleep

Oh this dedication to blogging daily just might kill me.

Going to bed last night, I knew I had nothing, as has been the case for the last few weekends. Then I realized, the last few Saturdays followed a redeye flight back from Cal-a-forn-eye-a. I think it's just exhaustion after arriving home, working all day and then crashing.

And crash I did.

I'm almost always up by 06:00, usually at the latest. It was closer to 08:00 - which is a decade in my sleep time. Oh, and I was in bed by 22:30 (after a horrible date night meal). The tequila at dinner sealed my fate of sleep and any chance of crafting something for this blog last night.

But after my little rant on LAX yesterday, I had one more indignity to endure on my way home:


Packed in like sardines to begin with, it was "interesting" when this woman pulled out some mask with two-like canisters attached.

Sure, I started to watch the movie Contagion, but you know the only interest in that was to see Gwenyth Paltrow die (aren't we all?). But I didn't want it sitting next to me on the plane - the disease or the actress.

Oddly, someone I was traveling with in CA mentioned wanting to take a pic of a woman on his plane who wore a mask, but he didn't know how to do it.  Clearly, I do know how to get the snap. ...and yes, I sent it to him.

I had no idea if she was contagious, didn't want to be near anyone was, or if it was come C-Pap traveling device so I didn't have to hear her saw logs.  I fell asleep for a few hours and tried forget about any air particle contaminants.

....and now, your Saturday Petey Porn. He moved his bed across the room while I was away.



Song by:  Blondie

Friday, September 28, 2012

Coming into Los Angeles

My lord, LAX is a fucking pit. I've probably mentioned this before.

It is like a bus station without the charm. ....and I don't get how the tableful of Asians (is that racist?) are working. I just don't. I'm sitting here trying to get any connectivity. Any at all.

The "free" wifi is a holy grail, like at most airports.  Sure you can connect, and then you just languish out there in the ether, always hoping you will eventually get some kind of signal. Alas, you never do.

No problem, right? I will plug in my broadband card.

Problem. Our first 2400 baud modem, back in 1992 transmitted data faster. I'm not sure if the walls, ceiling, floors and subfloors of this airport are made of concrete and lead, but it took 14 minutes (!!!!) to get my blog editor page to load.  I stopped timing at 23 minutes on how long it took to get the title image to transmit.

Fuck knows how long it will take to save and upload this post - if it goes at all. I might be posting from Cleveland, after I land.

Of course, I have no one to blame but myself. I tell myself I should take the redeye, so I get home and don't spend / waste a day in the air. The joke is, I work all day, fly all night and then get home and go directly to work.  If I traveled during the day, at least I'd avoid having to slave away all day long. Sure the work would still be there, but it seems I'm more of a glutton than most.

Still, I like to be home. Petey gets SO excited when I pull in the drive. That's quite a nice feeling.

I need to learn to avoid LAX, but it is difficult when taking the redeye from the west coast.

I wonder if Wendys is hiring.


Song by:  Arlo Guthrie

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Record of the Month

I figured I'd do a monthly 'what I'm listening to' kind of thing. This could be viewed as a lame placeholder kind of post. And probably it is. But it's my blog! So there! 


I am so much more pleased with Aimee Mann's new album, Charmer. That is, more pleased than I was with her last album.

Save 3-4 songs on  @#%&*! Smilers, it was, to me, her weakest album. I never said it was a bad album, just not as strong as some of her stellar disks. I know I have gotten push back on that from at least one reader....but I stick by my opinion. They're like assholes, you know.....my opinions that is, not my readers.

Mann has always been very consistent in her writing, producing and playing. You will see her mix it up with a more acoustic sound, or then go back to a synth vibe for a record, but for the meat of her music, she doesn't stray too too much from what she's always done as a solo artist.  At least this time there are a few twists that I haven't seen since maybe the Special Edition of Lost in Space.

"Charmer" is a stellar first cut. The vocal arrangement and phrasing is just great.  The second release, "Labrador" might have a fun(ny) video, but a song about your dog fetching sticks - metaphor or not - just didn't do it for me.

I am a big fan of "Gamma Ray". It is one of those twists I mentioned earlier. I like the rockier aspect, which you don't always get to see from her at this level. Ditto with "Crazytown" - maybe not as rock oriented, but somewhere between rock and pop - and liking the almost Arcade Fire-like electric piano opening (seriously, listen to their "We Had to Wait").  "Gumby" is a truly '60's pop confection song - and I don't mean that as a bad thing.

And "Living a Lie" is a very well done duet. Save a song or two with her husband, Mann doesn't do true duets and the blend of her and James Mercer's voice is a good match. Again, the vocal arrangements really work. I don't want a full record of duets from Mann, but she should try it more frequently.

"Red Flag Diver" doesn't start off strong, but hey, it is different than most anything she's done and that's an ok thing. I have total respect for exploration, but the bridge does have a vibe that she already explored on The Forgotten Arm. ...and is it ok to like a song for the background vocal arrangement more than the lead vocal ("Soon Enough")?

Most bonus tracks are usually toss away tunes, but I'm liking "Brother's Keeper" (iTunes download only, I think.)

Yes, Mann falls into all to familiar territory ("Disappeared", "Barfly", "Slip and Roll") - again, not a bad thing, but after seeing glimpses of grander music making, it's a little disappointing

It is nice to really enjoy an album - and that's hard to say since people don't listen to albums per se anymore. In the world of digital downloads, it's good to be able to go start to finish.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Master and Servant

It turns out I'm not artsy enough or fartsy enough for some movies.

....well, that last part might be a slight fib.

Yes, we're still behind in our yearly movie-going quest (but now only by one), but not only did we rub another one out....um....check another one off, but possibly the first true "Oscar contender" of the season: The Master.

Let me start out by saying, that I'm not saying this flick is Oscar worthy, the "press" has deemed it so, and well before it was released. Or the movie's distributor has a great PR person (and no, I don't mean a Shark....or is it a Jet(?)).

Like most movies I want to see, I opt to not read reviews of them prior to putting my tush in a movie seat. And while I haven't read a single review, one hears things. "Philip Seymour Hoffman is great".  "Joaquin Phoenix's role of a lifetime" (I'm paraphrasing.)  Yada yada yada.

They are both good in their roles, but I'm only assuming Phoenix is acting half the time, and the rest is just this basic weirdness. Maybe that is his craft - hard to say.  Seymour Hoffman seemed to be better and more captivating.

...well....as captivating as this movie can be.

I can't say I enjoyed it. I can't say I saw where the movie was going, or where it went or why it went there. Clearly, I am not intellectual enough to see beyond what they present on the screen.  It was two and one half hours long and seemed longer.

Not a Spoiler Alert, but the movie is "allegedly" about the formation of Scientology, though director/writer Paul Thomas Anderson won't really confirm that, as he'd have his ass sued by Kirsty Alley, John Ravolta and little Tommy Cruise.

The irony is not lost on me that Cruise starred in Anderson's Magnolia.  I wasn't thrilled by that either - except for Aimee Mann's soundtrack.

I am sure I'm missing things on the artsy level and perhaps the fartsy one too. The movie had no insight or revelations - I don't care what reviewers who have their heads up their ass think. I suppose unanswered questions are supposed to be fulfilling in the movie community, but personally I think the creators write themselves into a corner and can't figure out how to end a story. Or maybe even tell it.

I don't think every story or movie needs to be wrapped up in a pretty little bow, but I think the bow should exist, whether it is tied or not.

I think what little press I've seen about this movie is overboard....not the Goldie Hawn / Kurt Russell vehicle.  That would have been welcome.

In a way it was ok to see Laura Dern in something, but am I missing the boat on Ilsa Fisher Amy Adams?  She has one acting affect that I can tell, and sure you can have her read dirty words or jack-off a main character, but she still has no range.

Sure, if and when Mike re-challenges me to a do-over for the Oscar picks, I might pick Phoenix or Hoffman - not because I think they deserve the win, but that others will. And I'm willing to compromise what little integrity I have to win.

You can go see The Master, but you'll have two outcomes:  my "I Told You So" moment, or your ability to educate me on what the fuck I missed with this one.



Song by: Depeche Mode

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

win and win

As far as I know, no one else joined in on the little contest that started between Mike and myself in picking the Emmy winners, but it was open to all....well, all that read his or my blog, I suppose.

Like the rest of my life, no one wants to play in my reindeer games. We're really not that scary of guys - just a little competitive. ...and Mike's more of a Clarice anyway, being told to stay put with Mrs. Rudolph, while the men go to do the real work.

The victor of this contest got bragging rights - that's all.  But let's face it, this is all about ego.

So I'm hear to BRAG!

I will say, both Mike and myself started off on shaky ground. Neither of us guessing (and let's face it, it was all guessing) the first few categories in the slightest. Like the Oscars contest Mike posed to me back in February, I thought this too might end in a tie, but this time 0-0.

Then something good happened - well for me - I started to pull away from the pack. A pack of two.

I cannot speak for my opponent, but mine were educated guesses not based as much on who I liked, but who I thought could take me across the finish line. I mean, I did have some of my likes (Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Julianne Moore) win, but had I thought another person would have won, I'd have kicked my "likes" to the curb in a heartbeat. I suppose that is why I put the 'should have won' caveat in there.

Mike goes into the 'should have won' category. Or he thinks he should. But let's face it, I gave him a sound trouncing. The word "spanked" comes to mind, but you folks are kind of immature and crude and take things the wrong way, so officially I'm not saying "spanked".

I should feel better about this win. It's not that feel bad for him per se, but I don't seem to be reveling in it the way I thought I would or should.

I think it might be harder to gloat having met Mike. Does that seem odd? Do I have feelings or compassion?  ewwww.  I've based my whole life letting people think the opposite.

But a win is a win - and I'm taking mine. I get so very few.

Final Count:
Blobby:  14
  Mike:    6

Mike gets to pick the next contest. His call.


...but here is how I imagined Mike looking had he won



Song by: Alanis Morissette

Monday, September 24, 2012

My Music Monday

I'm totally lifting this from Stevie B from a few months ago, but I'm totally giving him credit for this as well.

I didn't know - and still don't - from the Editors. Since watching this video on Stevie's site, I actually went and purchased the song on iTunes.

Yes, I sampled other songs, but nothing struck me like "Papillon" does. The song is 90 seconds longer than the video version but it works even better.

Something about the vocals and music give it a cross between Sisters of Mercy and early New Order vibe. But the song is great for working out - lifting, running (duh), but rowing and biking as well.

And it is one of those songs I'm careful about how often I play, as it is one of those songs that is very difficult to purge from my pea-sized brain. It plays on repeat through my head well after the song has stopped. Hours after. Even posting this without playing it has it running in my head.

I like the video too.



Sunday, September 23, 2012

Butter Cookie

Prettiest shortbread cookies ever!

Our friend, Chef Bob, has opened his first shoppe.

He's been a great chef and catered my parent's 50th anniversary, but it's probably time he expanded his exposure.

The man is a regular on morning TV shows doing his demos creating food and sweets.  I'm a little biased as I have been friends with him forever.

To be fair, these shortbread cookies are not his, but created by his business partner. Sure, he had great butter cream mini-cupcakes and I'm assuming decent German chocolate mini-cupcakes (je am not a fan of German chocolate anything).  But oy, the cookies are / were great,

Had the store been ready for launch, I would have bought a few dozen to take to a dinner party we went to later in the day.

I've mentioned we live in a great 'hood and have great neighbors and friends here. It's always great to share time with them - and even better that we can walk there....and more importantly, walk home. That is important when you kill two bottles of wine.   ....maybe shared.....maybe not.

I have to say, I'm proud of myself.  I know, I'm modest.

I'm food impaired. I am a simple guy. What I don't like in food, is more than I like as food. I try to stay away from most anything - cranberries, nuts, mushrooms, eggplant, etc. But I'm a master picker, so I can work around most anything.

Last night, I ate most everything, though eggplant and mushrooms were not served. I even ate carrot cake, which is only above spice cake in terms of caked desserts.

But you all know I'm a big cookie fan. But we didn't bring cookies to the dinner. They weren't for sale, since they did not have a occupancy permit in hand. It was just an introduction event.

Oh oh oh - and even though our neighbors and friends live three doors away from us, they have a completely different view than we do. Much more clear, much more impressive.



I could live with that sunset, or a variation of, on a daily basis.

Oh, and I might be "tipsy", but I'll still make yoga this morning.  I'm nothing if not a martyr.



Song by:  Fleetwood Mac

Saturday, September 22, 2012

XXXs & OOOs

It's a drizzly Saturday morning.  Hard to get out of bed.  Difficult to write anything.

But I have family priorities and that means getting my hairy butt out of so the dog doesn't pee or poop in the house.

I was a little worried as I lay under the covers thinking it's been 13 hours since Petey went #2.  He refused his night time walk because it was raining. He peed and then went right into the garage and would not come out.  So I chanced it and he went back to bed.

It wasn't raining when we left the house this morning but it was heavy drizzle by the time we returned, but by then, as the female voice in Austin Powers would say: "Evacuation Complete".

I mentioned he is particular about his bed set up and I tried to capture it on video this morning, but this damned iPhone 4 (no, not even the 4s!) was slow to cooperate, so you don't get all his attention to detail.

....and then, as you'll see, he realized he was being filmed.



So, not much to say today. But Torn will call it "Petey Porn" - and that's ok with me.



Song by: Trisha Yearwood

Friday, September 21, 2012

I'm So Tired

When this boy goes out, he goes out hard - and in comfort.  He's all about comfort.

Now and then, Petey will take his bed and repurpose it however feels fit.  He'll move that bed around, turn it over and clearly make a cave out of it.

And then he's out like a light.

That's my plan. I'm crafting this Thursday evening at 22:00, since I've been up since 06:00 Wednesday morning.

Oh sure, I think I slept two hours on the redeye from San Francisco but I'm not sure I can call that rest.  Or sleep.

I got off the plane, drove home and worked 11 hours.  Sure, I was greeted by one very happy dog and one somewhat happy husband and one ambivalent cat.  The dog jumped on me and licked me.  The husband kissed me. The cat wanted her food bowl filled.

But post dinner, I became very very sleepy. I wanted to write something other than this, but you know, this is all I'm good for right now. Soon it is off to bed - and it is there that I'll snuggle.........but most likely with the cat.


Song by: the Beatles

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Wonder

710 came across and article online that probably only we would care about.

The Wonder Bread factory in Columbus is being turned into condos....well and restaurant space.

The Wonder Bread Lofts.

710 and I started our second living together "situation" across the street from Wonder Bread back in 1993, under the neon sign that more often  than not read "Wonder Brad" or "Wonder Bad".

But all throughout the day, we had the smell of freshly baked bread.


It was an ok townhouse, nothing fancy, but we had a backyard. And we got Tovah while we lived there. Our PWT neighbors spray painted 'FAC' on the bumper of my car.  I'm not sure if they were scared off before they finished, or if it was just an indictment of the American education system.

Still, it was a nice place to start over and from there we migrated north to Cleveland two and one half years later.

While the street (on the other side of the building you see in the image) was a quiet tree-lined brick one, I wouldn't fancy living with lofts and patrons coming and going all evening.  Still it's nice they aren't letting a vacant building just languish.

And it sounds like they're keeping the sign - so that is cool.

That's it. I have no witty or poignant wrap-up.  Go about your day now.           NOW!



Song by: Nat'le Merchant

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Bad Day

Believe it or not, there are days I just don't want to get out of bed.

It's true.

Lately, it's been on work travel days. Yeah, usually I'm ok once I'm at the airport, but I'm finding the days leading up to that are like the Sunday before you have to go back to school.  I'm finding myself wanting to be at home all the time and not so much up in the air or in a hotel room.

It is a little better once I'm in those places.

Except for Monday.

Being somewhat of a road warrior - or worrier - you learn to go with the flow on certain things:  bad flights, cancelled flight, idiots on planes, crappy cars or bad GPS instructions. It's the nature of the game. One of those on a trip can leave a bad taste in your mouth - but try three or four in a day.

It actually made me call 710 in the middle of the day - something we never do - just to hear a friendly voice.

The first flight to San Francisco was fine. I slept half of the way. But SFO was a different story. Since I was taking a smaller jet to my final destination (not the movie), they transported us to a smaller terminal, one Greyhound would be embarrassed to call its own. I had 30 minute between flights.

It would turn out to be 30 minutes plus three hours. No plane.............no plane..............no plane.  Just excuses. In the meantime, I worked on my laptop and made calls. I finally got up and roamed around a bit - but with my luggage, as to leave it unattended would be a no-no.

Since the connection would mean gate-checking my bag, I went to get a tag for that - and that is when I noticed it was not my bag at all.  Same make, same model, same colour I have not seen anywhere else, but it had a different identification tag on it.  Fuck me.

Mind you, I had been sitting in a terminal for almost four hours without noticing , how far away could my bag have gone?  I figured I would be buying new suits, pants and poo-poo undies once I reached my final destination (not the movie).

But I called the number on the tag and a man answered. Miraculously, he was up a flight of stairs at another gate. His flight was delayed, he was sitting around and didn't notice my tag on the bag he was lugging around. I mean, I really thought my bag would have been turned in somewhere and I would get it two weeks after returning home.  But no - it was 700 feet from me.

I took the bag to him - not that he ever offered to come to me. Whatever. I was happy to have my toothpaste back....and my poo-poo undies. He flew in from Denver, so he wasn't even on my flight to get the bags switched. Finally we realized we were probably on the same shuttle from terminal to terminal.

Crisis averted, but it was a crappy 30 minutes, while I wrung my hands and fretted. Still weirder than seeing the next license plate in sequence with your own.

Then the plane came - a turbo prop. Great. I guess it was fine for 22 minute flight. The joke is, I could have driven from SFO to my destination twice while I waited for the plane, let alone the flight itself.

Then there was the rental car. The car seemed fine. But it was a hot hot day. 93 degrees, and I was late! So I got in and drove away. Yeah, I figured it was a Chevy so it would take a while for the air to kick in and cool down the car.  By the time I realized it was just going to blow 90 degree air on me, I was too far gone to turn around and start over with Budget.  The four calls I placed on my drive just rang and rang and rang at their business. Oh, I will be having words for them.

Since it's TMI, my shirt and t-shirt were soaked with sweat by the time I hit my hotel. No need for the client shit, since I missed all my scheduled meetings for Day 1.

And to top it off - dinner: El Pallo Loco.   Yes, it was next door to the hotel. I walked over, got my burrito and back to the a/c of my hotel room.

Oh, travel has no more glamour. None at all.


Song by: R.E.M.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Way I Choose

Educated Guesses.

That's all you can call my selections. But isn't that true of anybody playing this game?

Granted, I watch more TV than I see movies, but I can't say I watch most of the TV that is represented here.

On many of these categories, I'm either going by word of mouth, or my own hopes that someone I like and watch wins.  ....and sometimes, I just pick someone I hope doesn't win!

So there is a mix here of me picking people I want to win and me wanting to beat Mike (or anyone else who wants to play along - and I hope you do), so I'll pick something I've never seen (Homeland, Breaking Bad, American Horror Story) because the press is all over that shit.   ...and I'm nothing if not a conformer.

I've never seen Homeland or Breaking Bad, but I "hear" they are the best shows on TV.  Making meth / dying of cancer or a drug-addled Angela Chase tracking down a suspected terrorist doesn't seem that engaging to me (oh, and we don't have Showtime for that show).

I have seen Veep, Downton Abbey, Modern Family and Game Change.  Who knew that I'd ever think Woody Harrelson  should win anything, but he did an great job, but clearly not as good as Julianne Moore. And while Modern Family is a powerhouse, I wouldn't really bet against, there are some acting roles that I think were just as strong (I mean, I love "Schmidt" on New Girl. He's one of the best characters on TV).

As for writing and directing - it's a total crapshoot. They either don't say which episode it is, or the title they give you means absolutely nothing to me. I'm totally making those up as I go (though I did know the Community episode for comedy writing, which is why it got my pick).

Mike (he's gay! going by the homo by-laws, isn't he required to be called "Michael"?) told me about the Creative Art Emmys and that four of the original categories were broadcast this last weekend. I removed those (as did he).  For the record, I won two and lost two on those.....but they don't count now.

So to recap by colour:
Red means: will win.
Blue means: I think should win.
Green means: should and will win.

For competition purposes, only Red and Green count towards a victor..

May the best person win.  ....and may that best person be me!

COMEDY SERIES

"The Big Bang Theory" (CBS)
"Curb Your Enthusiasm" (HBO)
"Girls" (HBO)
"Modern Family" (ABC)
"30 Rock" (NBC)
"Veep" (HBO)

COMEDY ACTOR

Jim Parsons as Sheldon Cooper in "The Big Bang Theory" 
Larry David as Himself in "Curb Your Enthusiasm"
Don Cheadle as Marty Kaan in "House of Lies" 
Louis C.K. as Louie in "Louie"
Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy in "30 Rock" 
Jon Cryer as Alan Harper in "Two and a Half Men"

COMEDY ACTRESS

Lena Dunham as Hannah Horvath in "Girls"
Melissa McCarthy as Molly Flynn in "Mike & Molly"
Zooey Deschanel as Jess Day in "New Girl" 
Edie Falco as Jackie Peyton in "Nurse Jackie"
Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in "Parks and Recreation"
Tina Fey as Liz Lemon in "30 Rock"
Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selina Meyer in "Veep"

SUPPORTING COMEDY ACTOR

Ed O'Neill as Jay Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Ty Burrell as Phil Dunphy in "Modern Family"
Eric Stonestreet as Cameron Tucker in "Modern Family" 
Max Greenfield as Schmidt in "New Girl"
Bill Hader as various characters in "Saturday Night Live"

SUPPORTING COMEDY ACTRESS

Mayim Bialik as Amy Farrah Fowler in "The Big Bang Theory"
Kathryn Joosten as Karen McCluskey in "Desperate Housewives"
Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy in "Modern Family"
Sofia Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Merritt Wever as Zoey Barkow in "Nurse Jackie"
Kristen Wiig as various characters in "Saturday Night Live"

DRAMA SERIES

"Boardwalk Empire" (HBO)
"Breaking Bad" (AMC)
"Downton Abbey" (PBS)
"Game of Thrones" (HBO)
"Homeland" (Showtime)
"Mad Men" (AMC)

DRAMA ACTRESS

Glenn Close as Patty Hewes in "Damages" 
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in "Downton Abbey"
Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick in "The Good Wife"
Kathy Bates as Harriet Korn in "Harry's Law"
Claire Danes as Carrie Mathison in "Homeland"
Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olson in "Mad Men"

DRAMA ACTOR

Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson in "Boardwalk Empire"
Bryan Cranston as Walter White in "Breaking Bad" 
Michael C. Hall as Dexter Morgan in "Dexter"
Hugh Bonneville as Robert, Earl of Grantham in "Downton Abbey"
Damian Lewis as Nicholas Brody in "Homeland"
Jon Hamm as Don Draper in "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING DRAMA ACTRESS

Anna Gunn as Skyler White in "Breaking Bad"
Maggie Smith as Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham in "Downton Abbey"
Joanne Froggatt as Anna in "Downton Abbey"
Archie Panjabi as Kalinda Sharma in "The Good Wife"
Christine Baranski as Diane Lockhart in "The Good Wife"
Christina Hendricks as Joan Holloway Harris in "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING DRAMA ACTOR

Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman in "Breaking Bad"
Giancarlo Esposito as Gustavo 'Gus' Fring in "Breaking Bad" 
Brendan Coyle as John Bates in "Downton Abbey"
Jim Carter as Mr. Carson in "Downton Abbey"
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in "Game of Thrones"
Jared Harris as Lane Pryce "Mad Men"

MINISERIES OR TV MOVIE

"American Horror Story" (FX)
"Game Change" (HBO)
"Hatfields & McCoys" (History)
"Hemingway & Gellhorn" (HBO)
"Luther" (BBC America)
"Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia" (PBS)

LEAD ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Connie Britton as Vivien Harmon in "American Horror Story" 
Julianne Moore as Sarah Palin in "Game Change"
Nicole Kidman as Martha Gellhorn in "Hemingway & Gellhorn" 
Ashley Judd as Rebecca Winstone in "Missing"
Emma Thompson as She in "The Song of Lunch"

LEAD ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Woody Harrelson as Steve Schmidt in "Game Change"
Kevin Costner as 'Devil' Anse Hatfield in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Bill Paxton as Randall McCoy in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Clive Owen as Ernest Hemingway in "Hemingway & Gellhorn" 
Idris Elba as John Luther in "Luther"
Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes in "Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia"

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Frances Conroy as Moira in "American Horror Story"
Jessica Lange as Constance Langdon in "American Horror Story"
Sarah Paulson as Nicolle Wallace "Game Change"
Mare Winningham as Sally McCoy in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Judy Davis as Jill Tankard in "Page Eight"

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Denis O'Hare as Larry Harvey in "American Horror Story"
Ed Harris as John McCain in "Game Change"
Tom Berenger as Jim Vance in "Hatfields & McCoys"
David Strathairn as John Dos Passos in "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Martin Freeman as Dr. John Watson in "Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia"

VARIETY SERIES

"The Colbert Report" (Comedy Central)
"The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" (Comedy Central)
"Jimmy Kimmel Live" (ABC)
"Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (NBC)
"Real Time With Bill Maher" (HBO)
"Saturday Night Live" (NBC)

DIRECTING FOR A COMEDY SERIES

Robert B. Weide, "Curb Your Enthusiasm "
Lena Dunham, "Girls"
Louis C.K., "Duckling"
Jason Winer, "Modern Family"
Steven Levitan, "Modern Family"
Jake Kasdan, "New Girl"

WRITING FOR A COMEDY SERIES

Chris McKenna, "Community"
Lena Dunham, "Girls"
Louis C.K., "Louie"
Amy Poehler, "Parks and Recreation"
Michael Schur, "Parks and Recreation"

DIRECTING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

Tim Van Patten, "Boardwalk Empire"
Vince Gilligan, "Breaking Bad"
Brian Percival, "Downton Abbey"
Michael Cuesta, "Homeland"
Phil Abraham, "Mad Men"

WRITING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

Julian Fellowes, "Downton Abbey"
Alex Gansa, Howard Gordon & Gideon Raff, "Homeland"
Semi Chellas & Matthew Weiner, "Mad Men"
Andre Jacquemetton & Maria Jacquemetton, "Mad Men"
Erin Levy & Matthew Weiner, "Mad Men"

DIRECTING FOR A MINISERIES, MOVIE OR DRAMATIC SPECIAL

Jay Roach, "Game Change"
Kevin Reynolds, "Hatfields & McCoys"
Philip Kaufman, "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Sam Miller, "Luther"
Paul McGuigan, "Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia"



Song by:  Bad Company

Monday, September 17, 2012

My Music Monday

Let's go back to 1980, shall we?

"Talk of the Town" was the pre-release of the Pretenders second album, cleverly titled Pretenders II.

Being it was 1980, import singles were all the rage, at least for 17 year old boy man, and being that the Pretenders (save Chrissie Hynde) hailed from the UK, they were considered British and therefore, an import.

I put a crowbar in my wallet and shelled out for the single, never knowing if that song would make it stateside.

The follow-up single, "Message of Love" was better and harder sounding, but the video has the music so incredibly distorted, so I went with "Talk of the Town", which has a bit more of a softer pop sound.

"Talk" is still a great song. And as much as I loved the Pretenders debut disk, in some ways, II had some better music. The band was more seasoned and comfortable in their own skin.

I had a slight boyhood crush on Martin Chambers, the drummer. Hands down, he is one of the, if not the best, live drummer I have ever seen (and saw him twice). You might not get that from this video, but he's a pretty amazing musician.

James Honeyman-Scott is not quite a looker, but was an excellent guitarist.  Both he and bassist Pete Farndon would be dead within two years of this video from drug related deaths. It was a shame.

The Pretenders continued on with some degree of success (Learning to Crawl is still a great album!) but I can only imagine what they could have accomplished in their original line-up.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Odd Couple

Yesterday was my 15,000 mile maintenance on my car - even though I had 15,900+ miles actually on the odometer.

It's kind of pathetic, my car is over two years old and I don't have 16,000 miles on it yet.  My driving for the week anymore consists of going to my parents house, working out and to and from the airport. That's it.

As I dropped my car off, the intake guy just looked at me quizzically. I showered and put on clean clothes - and to my knowledge, nothing was hanging out of anywhere that it shouldn't be.

He just says - "I just wrote down this license plate (meaning mine) a few minutes ago."

I mean, I had just pulled in, and there was a reason to be confused.  The car sitting directly in front of mine was the same make, model and colour.



I'm guessing the guy (or girl) must have gotten the car the same day as I did?  Good for the intake guy to pay attention to detail as opposed to just jotting down numbers.

I'll be honest, I don't even remember my license plate, so it would have slid right past me. I guess the better scenario was that one of us just didn't drive away in the other guy's car.



Song by:  Weezer

Saturday, September 15, 2012

You Can't Win

Mike was supposed to throw something out on his site about re-challenging me to our tie in the Academy Awards contest.  He wants winner's bragging rights, but time will tell if he'll get them.  I mean, he actually has to win first, no?

It was actually I who challenged him to the Emmy awards contest, but he said he'd throw it out. Mike has control issues. ...as well as issues on follow-through.  I am taking the bull by the horns. 

Last time we did not set up exactly which categories we would or would not include.  I've taken care of that this time. I've eliminated some shit (best reality show host? - like there IS a best reality show host??).  Full list is below.

While it comes down to who picks the winners, I'm ok with doing a 'who will win / who should win" thing. 

I will highlight in red (who will win), blue (who should win) and green if it is both.  

The winner only gets the 'who will win' category.  I will post my selections on 9/22 (awards are the next day).  No points go to people who post answers after the show starts.   Sorry - thems are the breaks. 


COMEDY SERIES

"The Big Bang Theory" (CBS)
"Curb Your Enthusiasm" (HBO)
"Girls" (HBO)
"Modern Family" (ABC)
"30 Rock" (NBC)
"Veep" (HBO)

COMEDY ACTOR

Jim Parsons as Sheldon Cooper in "The Big Bang Theory" 
Larry David as Himself in "Curb Your Enthusiasm"
Don Cheadle as Marty Kaan in "House of Lies" 
Louis C.K. as Louie in "Louie"
Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy in "30 Rock" 
Jon Cryer as Alan Harper in "Two and a Half Men"

COMEDY ACTRESS

Lena Dunham as Hannah Horvath in "Girls"
Melissa McCarthy as Molly Flynn in "Mike & Molly"
Zooey Deschanel as Jess Day in "New Girl" 
Edie Falco as Jackie Peyton in "Nurse Jackie"
Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in "Parks and Recreation"
Tina Fey as Liz Lemon in "30 Rock"
Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selina Meyer in "Veep"

SUPPORTING COMEDY ACTOR

Ed O'Neill as Jay Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Ty Burrell as Phil Dunphy in "Modern Family"
Eric Stonestreet as Cameron Tucker in "Modern Family" 
Max Greenfield as Schmidt in "New Girl"
Bill Hader as various characters in "Saturday Night Live"

SUPPORTING COMEDY ACTRESS

Mayim Bialik as Amy Farrah Fowler in "The Big Bang Theory"
Kathryn Joosten as Karen McCluskey in "Desperate Housewives"
Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy in "Modern Family"
Sofia Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Merritt Wever as Zoey Barkow in "Nurse Jackie"
Kristen Wiig as various characters in "Saturday Night Live"

DRAMA SERIES

"Boardwalk Empire" (HBO)
"Breaking Bad" (AMC)
"Downton Abbey" (PBS)
"Game of Thrones" (HBO)
"Homeland" (Showtime)
"Mad Men" (AMC)

DRAMA ACTRESS

Glenn Close as Patty Hewes in "Damages" 
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in "Downton Abbey"
Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick in "The Good Wife"
Kathy Bates as Harriet Korn in "Harry's Law"
Claire Danes as Carrie Mathison in "Homeland"
Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olson in "Mad Men"

DRAMA ACTOR

Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson in "Boardwalk Empire"
Bryan Cranston as Walter White in "Breaking Bad" 
Michael C. Hall as Dexter Morgan in "Dexter"
Hugh Bonneville as Robert, Earl of Grantham in "Downton Abbey"
Damian Lewis as Nicholas Brody in "Homeland"
Jon Hamm as Don Draper in "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING DRAMA ACTRESS

Anna Gunn as Skyler White in "Breaking Bad"
Maggie Smith as Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham in "Downton Abbey"
Joanne Froggatt as Anna in "Downton Abbey"
Archie Panjabi as Kalinda Sharma in "The Good Wife"
Christine Baranski as Diane Lockhart in "The Good Wife"
Christina Hendricks as Joan Holloway Harris in "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING DRAMA ACTOR

Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman in "Breaking Bad"
Giancarlo Esposito as Gustavo 'Gus' Fring in "Breaking Bad" 
Brendan Coyle as John Bates in "Downton Abbey"
Jim Carter as Mr. Carson in "Downton Abbey"
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in "Game of Thrones"
Jared Harris as Lane Pryce "Mad Men"

MINISERIES OR TV MOVIE

"American Horror Story" (FX)
"Game Change" (HBO)
"Hatfields & McCoys" (History)
"Hemingway & Gellhorn" (HBO)
"Luther" (BBC America)
"Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia" (PBS)

LEAD ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Connie Britton as Vivien Harmon in "American Horror Story" 
Julianne Moore as Sarah Palin in "Game Change"
Nicole Kidman as Martha Gellhorn in "Hemingway & Gellhorn" 
Ashley Judd as Rebecca Winstone in "Missing"
Emma Thompson as She in "The Song of Lunch"

LEAD ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Woody Harrelson as Steve Schmidt in "Game Change"
Kevin Costner as 'Devil' Anse Hatfield in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Bill Paxton as Randall McCoy in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Clive Owen as Ernest Hemingway in "Hemingway & Gellhorn" 
Idris Elba as John Luther in "Luther"
Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes in "Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia"

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Frances Conroy as Moira in "American Horror Story"
Jessica Lange as Constance Langdon in "American Horror Story"
Sarah Paulson as Nicolle Wallace "Game Change"
Mare Winningham as Sally McCoy in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Judy Davis as Jill Tankard in "Page Eight"

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Denis O'Hare as Larry Harvey in "American Horror Story"
Ed Harris as John McCain in "Game Change"
Tom Berenger as Jim Vance in "Hatfields & McCoys"
David Strathairn as John Dos Passos in "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Martin Freeman as Dr. John Watson in "Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia"

VARIETY SERIES

"The Colbert Report" (Comedy Central)
"The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" (Comedy Central)
"Jimmy Kimmel Live" (ABC)
"Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (NBC)
"Real Time With Bill Maher" (HBO)
"Saturday Night Live" (NBC)

GUEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES

Dot-Marie Jones as Coach Shannon Beiste in "Glee"
Maya Rudolph, host in "Saturday Night Live"
Melissa McCarthy, host in "Saturday Night Live"
Elizabeth Banks as Avery Jessup in "30 Rock"
Margaret Cho as Kim Jong-il in "30 Rock"
Kathy Bates as Charlie Harper in "Two and a Half Men"

GUEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES

Michael J. Fox as Himself in "Curb Your Enthusiasm"
Greg Kinnear as Tad in "Modern Family"
Bobby Cannavale as Dr. Mike Cruz in "Nurse Jackie"
Jimmy Fallon, host in "Saturday Night Live"
Will Arnett as Devon Banks in "30 Rock"
Jon Hamm as Abner and David Brinkley in "30 Rock"

GUEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES

Martha Plimpton as Patti Nyholm in "The Good Wife"
Loretta Devine as Adele Webber in "Grey's Anatomy"
Jean Smart as D.A. Roseanna Remmick in "Harry's Law"
Julia Ormond as Marie Calvet in "Mad Men"
Joan Cusack as Sheila Jackson in "Shameless"
Uma Thurman as Rebecca Duvall in "Smash"

GUEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES

Mark Margolis as Tio Salamanca in "Breaking Bad"
Dylan Baker as Colin Sweeney in "The Good Wife"
Michael J. Fox as Louis Canning in "The Good Wife"
Jeremy Davies as Dickie Bennett in "Justified"
Ben Feldman as Michael Ginsberg in "Mad Men"
Jason Ritter as Mark Cyr in "Parenthood"

DIRECTING FOR A COMEDY SERIES

Robert B. Weide, "Curb Your Enthusiasm "
Lena Dunham, "Girls"
Louis C.K., "Duckling"
Jason Winer, "Modern Family"
Steven Levitan, "Modern Family"
Jake Kasdan, "New Girl"

WRITING FOR A COMEDY SERIES

Chris McKenna, "Community"
Lena Dunham, "Girls"
Louis C.K., "Louie"
Amy Poehler, "Parks and Recreation"
Michael Schur, "Parks and Recreation"

DIRECTING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

Tim Van Patten, "Boardwalk Empire"
Vince Gilligan, "Breaking Bad"
Brian Percival, "Downton Abbey"
Michael Cuesta, "Homeland"
Phil Abraham, "Mad Men"

WRITING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

Julian Fellowes, "Downton Abbey"
Alex Gansa, Howard Gordon & Gideon Raff, "Homeland"
Semi Chellas & Matthew Weiner, "Mad Men"
Andre Jacquemetton & Maria Jacquemetton, "Mad Men"
Erin Levy & Matthew Weiner, "Mad Men"

DIRECTING FOR A MINISERIES, MOVIE OR DRAMATIC SPECIAL

Jay Roach, "Game Change"
Kevin Reynolds, "Hatfields & McCoys"
Philip Kaufman, "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Sam Miller, "Luther"
Paul McGuigan, "Sherlock: A Scandal in Belgravia"


Song by:  Kelly Clarkson