October 31, 2005

On the Lacksidasicality of Genitalia

Posted in General at 9:18 pm by Ian

Last weekend, I traveled down to Claremont with the explicit purpose of recruiting others like myself into the bonds of employment. After a rutheless five-hour day of smiling and giving things away for free, I retired to Scripps, where there were both friends and liquid refreshment. Lisa and I went to the Motley to waste an hour (while others were being productive before dinner), and spied an excellent means of diversion.

Sex and the City Trivia.

It was an especially daunting challenge, given that I have never seen Sex and the City, and Lisa claimed to have seen only two episodes. Later, once Natalie, an avowed fan of the show, joined our game, we learned that that wasn’t necessarily a disadvantage.

To say that the game design was phoned in is really an insult to the general fidelity of telephones. As far as I could tell, the only objective in the game was gaining cards that had things from the show (for example, one of the cards was “The Girls Out to Lunch”. Another was “Sex with Heels on”). To get these cards, you had to answer questions about the show, ranging from the absurdly speciifc (“After Carrie fell down the stairs, what color lipstick was Samantha wearing for the Doctors?” Answer: “Hooker red”) to the blindingly obvious (“How much does Samantha have sex?” Answer: “A lot”).

Not knowing anything about the topic makes a trivia game quite light-hearted. When tasked with producing the name of one of our heroine’s trysts, we had only to look on our own question card for a name. I guessed “Steve” a lot.

I should note at this point that we were fantastically disruptive to the rest of the Motley. Most people were there doing homework and we were loudly reading questions, guessing, and then laughing at our inability (or, even louder, at our ability) to answer them. After a few minutes of this, we caught the attention of a girl at the next table, whose name I would bet good money is Natalie. She was a Sex fan, and joined our game. Surprisingly, her fanaticism did not pay off, and I remained in the lead. Oh, yes. I was winning.

But Lisa was gaining fast. I credit her burgeoning score to the fact that I had to receive a telephone call about dinner plans, and she and Natalie played on. She will no doubt claim a righteous increase in score. Whatever the source, she was drawing close to my previously indomitable score, when she received a question that will be her finest moment in Sex and the City trivia.

“When <character> went to the doctor for infertility, what was she diagnosed with?”

And Lisa, for the win, came back with: “A Lazy Ovary.”

October 25, 2005

I Know Where The Caged Bird Flies (Has a Layover, Anyway)

Posted in General at 3:44 pm by Ian

There are two small birds—sparrows, I think—flying around in the B Terminal of the Boise Airport. I have a book, an internet connection, and several movies on my laptop, but I’ve been watching the birds for about 15 minutes while I wait on hold with all my financial institutions to change my address.

On my whirlwind tour through the Pacific NorthNotQuiteSoWest, I have learned the following things, which I did not before know.

  • There is beer in Salt Lake City (the airport, anyway), but it’s pretty wussy beer.
  • Oh, good lord. We interrupt this list to bring you the fact that that lights just partly went off and there’s a… buzzing, sort of sizzling sound from above. I can’t see, but I hope that neither of the birds found a new path to ground.
  • “No, You ‘da ho!” never gets old. Never.
  • Flight attendants are specially trained to always try to give you drinks at the exact moment that whatever movie you are watching is at its most socially objectionable scene.
  • Exits from Idaho freeways are labeled with mile markers only, not street names. Our directions, on the other hand, were t’other way ’round. Hilarity ensued.

Begging For Closure

Posted in General at 3:31 pm by Ian

“Can I ask why you’ve chosen to close your account?”

“It’s too hard to navigate the menus to get to the close account option. I don’t want to have a card that’s that difficult to cancel.”

“Well how about…. [thinking]. Uhm. How about if I give you a coupon for…”

October 19, 2005

Lindy and a Career, Too

Posted in General at 10:31 pm by Ian

Since the powers that be have decided I’d be good at enticing young Mudders to join our ranks, I shall be Groovin’ to the Lindy beat tomorrow night, and smiling in khakis and polo shirt the next morn. Hope you all can make it.

Shocked, Shocked!

Posted in General at 12:16 pm by Ian

Despite their explicit instructions otherwise, it seems that some people have been playing “Bud Pong” with beer, and not water.

“It has come to our attention that despite our explicit guidelines, there may have been instances where this promotion was not carried out in the manner it was intended,” Anheuser-Busch spokeswoman Francine Katz said in a statement Tuesday.

If you can even imagine.

October 17, 2005

Gettin’ a Move On

Posted in General at 9:23 pm by Ian

Took the first load of boxes over tonight. Hoping to complete the move by this weekend.

In unrelated news, someone left sunglasses at my barbecue. Yours?

October 14, 2005

Google Error Messages

Posted in General at 8:03 am by Ian

You’ve probably seen the one that mentions the Googleplex, but I just got a new good Google error message

Server Error

Gmail is temporarily unavailable. Cross your fingers and try again in a few minutes. We’re sorry for the inconvenience.

October 11, 2005

I’m Moving!

Posted in General at 8:32 am by Ian

Just got a call from the renter lady person, and we got the house. Woo. Rent will be $200 less, there’s a space to store the boat, and hardwood floors. Oh, glorious hardwood floors for dancing.

October 10, 2005

Just Dessert

Posted in General at 11:20 am by Ian

“Wow. Look at these menus. I can’t even find the desserts section.”
“It’s over on the right. No, further. Down a bit. Ok, look for sandwiches and go South South East.”
“I’m not even sure I want a dessert; maybe I want something fried. Onion rings, or something.”
“Maybe they’ll just fry the dessert: ‘Yeah, I’d like a piece of pecan pie, and could you just dunk that in the deep fryer for a minute?'”
“Here! Look, a deep fried banana split! ‘The Havana Banana split is made with a banana lightly fried in sweet batter.'”
“Hi, are you ready to order?”
“Yeah, I’ll get the Havana Banana Split.”
“Would you like the large, or the small.”
“Uhm. How big…?”
“Well, the banana is just a little bigger.”
[eyebrow] “What are you suggesting?”
“Oh, uhm. It’s just, uhhh….”

October 8, 2005

Serenity Review

Posted in General at 10:00 pm by Ian

**Warning—There are spoilers in this post. If you haven’t seen Serenity and are going to, I wouldn’t read this.**
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No, seriously.
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The Good

  • The intro was great. The first ten minutes effectively established the story for Firefly virgins, and did it all with flair, both dramatic and cinematic. The exposition is a little clunky in the first reveal of the minor theme of Love Overcoming All Obstacles (or, at least, Badass Black Assassin guys with Swords™), but Joss is forgiven that transgression over time because “clunkily sincere” is just the way that BBAGwS is written. And it works for him. Those diehards who piss and moan about the lack of continuity between Simon’s firsthand liberation of River in the movie and the wet-behind-the-ears rich boy with a deep freeze in the series are challenged to write the scene in a way that will even remotely approach revealing the characterization of Simon that we expect to people who haven’t seen the series. Also of note is the fact that about 75-80% of the trailer was in those first few minutes. It was exciting to realize that the entire rest of the movie was open; no plot points had been given away. For reference, the trailer and the first 9 minutes of the movie.
  • River’s raised eyebrow in response to “Am I talking to Miranda.” And some people say that the Joss is only good for snarky dialog.
  • Book and the way of the BBAGwS. Let us establish a few facts: 1) There have been only three black characters. 2) Two of them are known to be BBAGwSs. 3) The other has exhibited substantial knowledge of weapons, tactics, and being mysterious. Coupled with our most recent BBAGwS’s sudden crisis of conscience at the conclusion of Serenity, and we get all the backstory for Book that we’ll ever need.

The Bad

  • “Uncle Owen! Aunt Book!!”
    “These blast marks are too accurate for Reavers. Only Alliance Badass Black Assassin Guys with Swords are this precise.”
    “Use the Belief, Mal.”
  • They all get out of the ship on Miranda. Only an hour and 20 minutes before, we all saw how essential it was to have someone back in the ship when the Reavers come a calling. Every single episode in the show leaves (at a minimum) Kaylee and Wash with Serenity, and often leaves a gun as well. Mal should have taken River and one gun (probably Zoe, but maybe Jayne).
  • Mal, in his ultimate encounter with the BBAGwS, manages to shoot the gun out of his opponent’s hand, and still fails to kill him. Rather than taking two steps to the right and shooting him in the head (where whatever fancy armor he may be wearing won’t work), he turns around and jumps onto the monkey bars. Now, he’s already seen what happens when you turn your back on BBAGwSs: Bad Things™. Mal may not be the greatest strategist, but he’s not stupid. That scene made him be.

The Whedon

  • Wash’s death. It could not have been better. Getting the ship down safely, saving the crew against all odds, and right in the middle of a final Washism. It also raises the stakes for the final battle. And it’s so Whedonesque to kill off the likeable characters right when you’re getting to love them.

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