The Comical Misadventures of a Rambling Mind


I need to approach this subject carefully. I already walk a fine line and trash talking something like this might send me straight to Hell. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.

I love Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. It is the highlight of my Sunday evenings. I didn't start watching it till part way through the season. A commercial was telling about an upcoming episode where an 8 year old girl who is in remission from cancer wanted the team to not redo her home, but the hospital ward she stayed in while receiving treatment. Ok. I was bawling from the commercial. This wasn't a good sign. I set the DVR to record the episode, even though I was home and available to watch it. This show doesn't pull any punches when it comes to tears. The show follows a pretty simple format so if you've never seen the show here is a quick run down.

The family sends in a video.
The EM:HE (supposedly traveling on a rockstar bus) gather in the galley to watch the video.
Deserving family explains the hardships they have endured/are enduring while showing footage of the current state of their home.
The EM:HE team cries (guys and girls).
The decide and commit to helping the family in a very Brady-esque sort of way.
The bus pulls up in front of the deserving family's home at a very early hour of the morning.
The host Ty (formerly of Trading Spaces) jumps off the bus and rouses the home owners with his megaphone.
The family runs out of the home screaming at the top of their lungs with no regard for any sleeping neighbors.
The EM:HE team is introduced.
The team is given a personal tour of the home and talk to the family about their personal likes/dislikes, goals, dreams, etc.
The deserving family is sent on a Disney vacation of some kind.
Plans are drawn up right on the spot.
Ty picks his secret room that he personally will work on.
The building contractor is troduced and his company is touted as being the best in the land.
Demolition begins, involving a lot of a pomp and circumstance. Parades. Clowns. Bulldozers. Hundreds of workers.
The amount of demolition depends on the assessment of the home and what needs to be done. Usually it's all the way to the ground and then some.
Contruction begins almost immediately as foundations, and framed out walls spring up out of nowhere.
5 Days of construction/renovation which can and usually involve many of the following.
-Shopping at Sears for appliances
-Weather delays
-Shots of the family enjoying their vacation
-Shots of the family astonished/overwhelmed/ecstatic at footage of the demolition of their former home.
-Visits to a local point of interest.
Then Ty exclaims how close the deadline to bringing the family back, and begins running around like a buffoon and shouts in a megaphone to anyone who will stop long enough to catch their breath is willing to be on television.
The family is brought home, but can't see their house with the huge rockstar bus in the way.
Everyone yells "Move That Bus" and the bus obeys.
The deserving family explodes in a moment of sheer overwhelming joy. Pure joy.
The house is shown on camera.
The EM:HE team is brought out of the house and introduced.
We are lead on a 'Family's Eye' view of walking into the home.
Every home will have a fireplace, flatscreen TV, AOL broadband in most of the rooms, hardwood flooring, a patio, water feature, outdoor grill kitchen, just to name a few standard features.
Each family member is shown entering their new room and falling apart again as they marvel over what they have been given.
Personal interviews are done with each family member that has the capability of speech no matter what age.
The family is gathered in the backyard, the team is introduced and reassembled again (in case you missed the previous two introductions).
The builder steps up proclaiming what support and love went into building the home.
Typically some monetary donation will be made to the family, sometimes a scholarship or two will be given, sometimes a lump-sum check is given.
Everyone smiles and waves.

It's the same for any family that is on the show. I've usually teared up, if not full blown boo-hooed by at least the half way point. And I love it!

Well mostly...

Remember when ABC (owned by Disney) would have the Disney movie of the week on Sunday. This is basically the new Disney movie of the week. Something to get the kids cuddled up close to you on the couch and just sit back and watch some good family entertainment. Or basically and hour long commercial, for Disney, Sears, Kraftmaid, and AOL. It's like the family's tragedy is just being used to promote the company's that are giving them a brand spanking new home. Sure the families are always SUPER grateful and with good reason.

I don't think that any of the families that have been on the show are undeserving of what they are getting. That's very heart-warming. These people have gone through or are going through more shit than most of us can even imagine. A widowed dad, raising his three toddlers. A woman adopting three girls living with AIDS and raising them even though she was recently diagnosed with severe cancer. A family who takes in another families children after the parents are killed. They are amazing stories in their own right, but it seems like the stories are lost in the overwhelming product placement of the show.

Some of these families I'd rather hear more about them and less about the house. Once you've seen one of these houses that they build, you've seen them all. They really are all the same with some tweaks and perks here and there to suite an individual family's needs.

I'd love to see what happens to these families after the show is over. Most of the homes are paid for. Old mortgages are paid off. Donations are made to cover the expense of utilities. But in some cases, how long would that money last? What kind of homes are these people really getting? Some of these families are may not be able to keep up their homes. How long will a child truly be able to use a bed in the shape of a princess carriage before she outgrows it and needs a new bed? Then what? The dance and recording studio is a cool idea, but how long will that really be functional as such a room?

I do think that the quality of some of these families lives are greatly improved by being on the show. I think others are going to have a hard time regardless of where they live. That's when I am the most saddened by the show. Because for as touched as they are, I don't think they really understand what is going to be the long term ramifications of having a mansion. Do the scholarships they give actually ever get used for what they are supposed to be used for?

The Team itself seems like decent people. Yet I can't get over how Girl/Boy next door they all look. We have sun-baked Ty who really could use some face cream or something to smooth out those crow's feet. SPF 80, Ty.

Michael (in charge of Glamour) typically sports the Mariska Hargitay look, which... good for him. Now get off my TV.

Since it is owned by Disney... Might as well have Cinderella and Snow White. Though, I do think Snow White needs to dump this Up With People Barn Raisin' and go host TLC's Trading Spaces. It's not the same without a host, since Paige decided to pull a Pamela Lee and go all sex video and wall paper.

Some of my personal favorites have been:

-The 8 year old who underwent treatment for a tumor in her stomach. Her matter-of-cast attitude about what she was going to do in her life was absolutely amazing. I tear up just thinking about her.

-The Mother of two children, who was the first Native American woman to die in a foreign war. She was the best friend of PFC Jessica Lynch who had her own war story to share.

-The Mother who adopted three girls living with AIDS. She was recently diagnosed with lung cancer and knew that she needed to do something to make sure her girls would be ok if something should happen to her.

If you happen to catch any of these episodes in reruns make sure you have plenty of tissues ready.

Now go hug your damn kids!
I posted this @ 6/30/2005 10:58:00 AM.............Need a link?..........


20 Questions

1. Tell me something obvious about you. I'm addicted to TV, music, and The Internets (as all the cool kids say it these days).

2. Tell me something about you that many don't know. I was actually Chad Lowe in a previous life.

3. What is your biggest fear? Did you not see my entry in regards to the creature crafted by the hands of the Underworld?

4. Do you normally go the safe route or take the short cut? Are we talking about the method we take to get some place, or the method we take to get some place in life? I'd safe that I take the safe route most of the time. In some situations I can take a short cut.

5. Name one thing you want that you can't buy with money. Happiness. Or telekentic abilities... which might lead to happiness. It would at least lead to me being to fetch a soda from the fridge without having to leave the couch which would make me happy.

6. What is your most treasured possession? My music. Music is the one thing that I can use to escape whatever is weighing on my mind. It can pick me up. It can mellow me out. It can make me want to jump around like a Scientologist on Oprah's couch. I would be lost without music.

7. What is the one thing you hate most about yourself that you do often? Speak up more often.

8. What is your favorite lie to tell? "That's interesting." Not that it's a lie everytime I say it, but it's the easiest to slip.

9. Name something you've done once that you can't wait to do again. White water raft. You wouldn't think of me as a much of a rafter. I'm not all that good of a swimmer and while I like to think of myself as adventerous I'm really not. Yet, I went white water rafting to Colorado on a high school trip and I loved it!

I would also love to go to Europe again, now that I am old enough to appreciate it more.

10. Are you the jealous type? Not really. I can be insecure at times and jealous thoughts will spring from some insecurities. Typically, jealous? No.

11. What is the one person, place or thing you can't say no to? Sleep. I like me some Zzz's. Or as I like to call it... The time of day when Law & Order Is Not On.

12. What is the nicest thing someone has ever done for you? Friends who love me unconditionally and stand by me when I may not be at my best.

13. If you could do something crazy right now, what would it be? Scream real loud! How crazy are we talking? Margot Kidder crazy? Anne Heche crazy?

14. When was the last time you cried? Let's see... when was the last time I watched Extreme makeover: Home Edition? I'll expound more on that later.

15. When was the last time you felt so good that nothing else mattered? Gosh... it's been a while since I can recall that feeling. I'm sure it had something to do with music. I can't think of the specific time/date, but I can recall a feeling of driving with the windows down, the sun shining, and Drops Of Jupiter by Train playing on the car stereo. I remember smiling for really no reason other than I felt good. It is one of those standing-in-the-middle-of-a-field spinning with-your arms-outstretched and just-enjoying-the-feeling-of-the-sun-on-your-face kind of moments.

16. Do you feel comfortable in public with no shirt on? Yes and no. I wouldn't walk down the street without wearing a shirt, but I've no problem going shirtless under the proper circumstances. Playing tennis. Swimming. Washing the car.

17. Name something embarrassing you did while drunk. After being dropped off at home after my birthday night, I tried to go into the wrong apartment building. They all look alike and I made it a good way before my friend asked me where the hell I was going. I really don't have a lot of material for fodder on topics like this. So you gets what you I gots to give and you'll like it!

18. Name one person, past or present, with whom you'd like to spend the day. Natalie Merchant. I could watch her complete the NYTimes Crossword and be simple amazed by her presence. And you know she'd get the whole thing done without cheating. She is just worldly and intelligent like that.

19. Name one place you've never been and would like to go, and tell me why. Australia. It seems like a beautiful country. Sydney has some of the most breath-taking sights that I've ever seen. And these are just photographs, so I can only imagine what the real thing would be like.

20. What's the story behind your online persona/name? There really isn't one. Some people have nicknames or aliases that are from high school/college. Maybe a funny situation has been the catalyst for a nickname, but I really don't have one. It's not like I can just decide on a nickname and that I want all my friends to start calling my by that name. I'm not Sting.
I posted this @ 6/29/2005 11:03:00 AM.............Need a link?..........


If anyone ever questioned why I am freaked out by ventriloquist dolls (and most dolls in general), then check out this doll with a face sculpted by The Dark One, himself!
I posted this @ 6/29/2005 11:03:00 AM.............Need a link?..........

WILD WILD LIFE by The Talking Heads

I'm not sure whether to be impressed or deny that I'm from the same state.

I'm Princess Margaret. I'm Al Unser Jr. I'm DRUNK!

I bet New York smelled nice for a little while.
I posted this @ 6/29/2005 05:44:00 AM.............Need a link?..........



Now is the time of year when most of the regular network shows are off for summer vacation. Within the last few years the trend has become to break away from the typical season format and in an attempt to retain summer viewers new shows start in the summer. It is also the time to catch up on shows that you might have wanted to watch before, but never got the chance. I was tuned in a few episodes late on both Lost and Grey's Anatomy. It was nice to catch them in reruns now. Both of which are great shows!

Remember a few years ago when you could turn on the TV and during the hours of 8AM and 10PM you could find a syndicated rerun of FRIENDS? It was crazy! Good for those of us who liked the show, but crazy that there was such a domination. Now the show that is taking of the airwaves is Law & Order and it's subsequent spin-offs (L&O:Special Victims Unit, L&O: Criminal Intent, L&O: Trial by Jury (short-lived)). Law & Order has been on for over a decade. It's children do just as well, if not better. This past weekend there was a L&O:SVU marathon. I can't tell you how much of it I watched. Not because I lost track of the time, but because Time, as I know it, is now divided into parts known as "Law & Order Is On" and "Law & Order Is Not On".

Q: What time is it?
A: Fifteen minutes till Law & Order:SVU is on.

At least two cable networks carry syndicated episodes as well as what is shown on NBC during the week.

What is happening as a result is that I consider myself to be somewhat of a amateur detective. It's like I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express and suddenly have all this intimate knowledge about forensics, crime solving, the law and it's enforcement.

"Do you have a Masters in Criminology?" they ask. No I just watched Law & Order for the last ten years with a focus on Special Victims Unit the last year and a half.

With all the high profile cases lately (Runaway Bride, Missing Teen in Aruba, BTK Confessions) it just gives me a chance to practice my knowledge of criminology via Law & Order.

How did the BTK Guy in Kansas evade police for so long? Wasn't there any DNA evidence? If they'd tracked evidence down to his church at one point, couldn't they have just narrowed it down to one of the members sooner?

Did they try playing the "Good Cop/Bad Cop" routine on any of the young men in Aruba to see if they could get one of them to change his alibi?

What motivated the Runaway Bride to runaway? What was she scared of? Is her family actual part of some weird cult and her marriage would seal an unholy deal?

Ok, so that last one is a little bit XFiles, but with some of the episodes of SVU it's not that far-fetched.

Law & Order sometimes will show symptoms of The Simpson's Syndrome. The episode will start out as a seemingly run of the mill gang member killing and by the end of it, you've got a couple of wealthy, sexually androgynous adolescents who have a secret language between the two of them and are seeing a sex therapist who makes them simulate fornication, and your left wondering how the hell they are connected.

There have been a number of times where I will read the description of the episode and turn it on half way through it and wonder what the hell a Grandma poisoning her Grandchild with mercury has to do with a Michael Jackson knock-off and pedophilia. (I'm sure that will drawn some odd Google searches.) It all usually makes sense in the context of the episode, but you could very easily be lost if you didn't see something from the very beginning.

There are some simple rules to help a person solve a Law & Order crime.

#1 If there is ever a bigger name guest star (C-List or higher) in the episode they are the perportrator 90% of the time.

#2 If they ever introduce a character by name early in the episode and you never hear from the again, you will in the last 10 minutes when the detectives find that last piece of the puzzle they needed. This is classic story telling. The gun in Act III, must be shown in Act I.

#3 The Good Guys don't always win.

Every so often they will even throw you a curve with...

#4 Sometimes there is no resolution, and you will be left hanging to talk amongst yourselves about what might happen.

So if you ever have a mystery that you need resolved, I've got several very interesting episodes of experience to help me help you get to the bottom of things.
I posted this @ 6/28/2005 12:09:00 PM.............Need a link?..........

LOVIN' YOU by Minnie Ripperton

I stumbled across this and just thought I'd share it.

Kelly Ripa's Hair Care Commercial

"With a little bit of help she can do it all."
I posted this @ 6/28/2005 12:06:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



  1. Useless:: Good-for-nothing
  2. Radiant:: Shining
  3. W:: X
  4. Unpaid:: Time Off
  5. Geek:: Squad
  6. Unfaithful:: Cheating
  7. Reboot:: Ctrl-Alt-Del
  8. No!:: Yes!
  9. Squad:: Geek
  10. Fetish:: Proclivity
I posted this @ 6/27/2005 07:01:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


EAT IT by Weird Al

I walked into the breakroom to heat up my food. The place smelled like a cross between a grilled ham and cheese and an Office Depot. The microwave in the copy room is on a table/desk that is lower than most counters. I toss my burger, Ziploc container and all, into the microwave, shut the door, set phasers to kill for 1m 30s and stepped away from the device. It's at this point that I look around to see if there are any cool office supplies that I could make use of (read: play with) at my desk. I could smell the cheese from my homemade burger as well as another scent I couldn't quickly identify. The microwave went off. As I opened the door I noticed that there was something wrong with my container. At first glance it seemed smaller, like it melted, warped, and shrunk.

What had actually happend was I'd pushed someone else lunch back deeper into the microwave and double-nuked their food along with my own. This microwave is typically VERY strong anyway. I don't know how long they'd heated their food for, but another minute and a half hadn't enhanced their dish at all. It looked crispy. And not the enjoyable kind of crispy.

No one come into the room while I was using the microwave. So I left with no one really knowing.

What gets me is this... Why walk off and leave your food? There are, easily, over two dozen people that work in this area of the building that would use that microwave. How difficult is it to stand by your food for even a couple minutes and retrieve it in a timely manner?

Oh well... Enjoy your lunches!
I posted this @ 6/24/2005 11:11:00 AM.............Need a link?..........


It's true that Love Shack by the B-52s might be more appropriate given the party in question, but the subject matter would seem to differ.

B-52s Love Shack burns down
I posted this @ 6/24/2005 10:55:00 AM.............Need a link?..........



Have you ever had one of those days where you are hungry, but nothing in particular sounds good. When I have that type of day I could very easily eat my way through a pantry and fridge and not give it a second thought. I can also do this when I've just eaten someplace that was very filling and good, but maybe not exactly what I was in the mood for.

Is it weird to have a second toe longer than your big toe?

Why is it so much better to hear a song on the radio? I have an ample supply of music that I could call upon, yet when I hear a song on the radio the song suddenly is so much better than any CD version I might have.

It's the same way with movies. I might have the DVD, but when The Breakfast Club is on TV it's suddenly very special.

Have you ever read something so funny, but you were trying not to laugh out loud and have to explain why you were laughing out loud because if you did then one of two things would happen. 1) You'd look like an idiot because you were reading something stupid. 2) You'd look like an idiot, because it isn't as funny to anyone else, but you inside your head.

I've often wondered what super power I would want if I had the choice. While I think it would be cool to be telekenetic or be able to read people's minds, I joke that knowing my luck I'd get stuck with some lame-ass ability. I've made fun of the idea that I must have the mutant ability to change traffic lights to yellow or red just as I am approaching them. Something mundane like that. I have always been able to 'see' people in other people. Maybe you look sort of like another person. You might have Jenifer Garner's eyes or Sean Astin's smile. I'll notice the resembelence. While I consider the ability to recognize people in other people not so much a mutant ability, now I read that it isn't even much of a unique ability.
I posted this @ 6/22/2005 02:59:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


No real reason... I just thought it was a fun picture.
I posted this @ 6/22/2005 02:58:00 PM.............Need a link?..........

EVERLASTING GAZE by The Smashing Pumpkins

So I had an eye exam the other day. I wear glasses when I drive and need to some something at a distance. I admit that I probably should wear them more, but I don't feel my vision has become bad enough to warrant wearing them all the time. I would like to get a new pair of glasses at some point.

I'm famously known for not liking things to be touching or in my eyes. It is for this reason that I don't wear contacts. If you ask my best friend what will be put on my tombstone it would be, "Loved by Family and Friends - Don't Touch His Eyes."

I show up for my exam and contrary to co-workers beliefs I get right in at my appointed time. Which left no time to worry about the impending exam. Since I work at a hospital and medical college, it was no surprise that my doctor was a resident. That's fine with me. It would be comparable to going to barber school for a haircut. It's cheaper and they learn something in the process. I'm sure the resident told me her name, but I wasn't really focused on remembering it. I knew things would be hovering around my eyes for the next 30 minutes.

They do the standard tests. Cover this eye. Read this line. Cover that eye. Read that line. Follow the finger. Which is clearer? 1 or 2... 1 or 2... Some of these tests I think are kind of unfair. Or at least, I make them unfair. I try to be truthful when I can't read something. It wouldn't benefit me to have glass with an improper prescription. Yet when they ask me to read a line with my stronger eye and then ask me to read the same line with my weaker eye... it's hard not to just remember the 5 letters and repeat them. So I do both. I read the letter, but just flat out tell them, that it's blurrier. It's the competitiveness in me. I have to be able to read (or at least remember) all the lines in order to win. My prize? New glasses.

Then it came time for the pressure test. There are least two different ways they test for glaucoma by checking the pressure of your eyes. One is to shoot a puff of air into your eye. This method was always difficult for me. I would know the blast of air is coming and couldn't keep my eye open long enough to let them do it correctly. The latest method is to numb the surface of your eye and touch it with a diagnostic tool. This test actually involves touching my eye. As previously mentioned... not good.

I asked Dr. Perky McSmiles if there was anyway we could finish the exam without the pressure test. I explained to her my extreme dislike. She looked somewhat sympathetic, but said that she found she could be pretty convincing at times, she said smiling politely. I told her that I was gay and her boobs would not 'convince' me to have my eye probed. Ok so maybe those weren't my exact words. What I might have said was... "if you have to do the test."

Being the good doctor, she tells me step by step what she is doing and what she is going to do. She takes a bottle of yellow eye drops and says that the drops well numb my eye. I am giving a tissue to gently blot. I was instructed to do so gently because the drops soften my eyeball. I repeat. THEY SOFTEN. MY. EYEBALL. Eyeballs by design are soft. How much softer do they need to be in order to be probed!?

No more than 30 seconds after she puts the drops in my eye she begins to set up the diagnostic tool to measure the pressure in my eye. I get a little annoyed by this. Mainly because the last time I had this done they put the drops in my eyes and told me it would take 20 minutes for the drops to take effect. Here this girl is rarin' to go after barely a minute! Someone lied to me.

She tells me to look directly ahead and keep my eyes open as wide as possible. I can see the blue tipped light stick coming closer to my eye. While I can't feel it 'on' my eye. When I blink, I can feel it, which freaks me out because I know what it's doing. And I don't like it one bit. She is kind enough to try and comfort me during the exam, but after a while I'm becoming annoyed because she may be trying harder to keep me calm than to get the exam over with.

She is decently swift about examing both eyes. I'm sure that it was a lot less time that I thought it was in my head. Once the exam is done, I sit back in the chair and immediately feel light headed and I start sweating. I feel a little nauseous. I ask for a glass of water or something cold to drink and she asks if I am ok. I tell her I'm fine which I am, but I'm not all at the same time. I know it is just an anxiety attack because of how worked up I am from having my eye poked. She brings an apple juice, which was the furthest thing from cold that one could possibly find. It would do.

The main doctor comes in and goes through a few exams of his own. Repeating a few. As long as it wasn't being poked in the eye again I would be ok. He tries to make a couple light hearted statements and asks if I'm still with them and if I'm still breathing and chuckles. Let me just say, that when speaking to someone who is probably having a mild anxiety attack, asking them if they are still breathing is not amusing. Ass. He was nice enough, outside of that comment.

I left the exam a few minutes later, none the worse for wear. Prescription in hand. Now I can get new glasses.

It probably doesn't help that I've always got things in my eye. If something is going to hit me or get stuck on my face it is going to be in the eye. It's like a magnet for projectiles. My old roommate followed me throughout the apartment with frosting on his finger. I stopped and turned around to get an eye full of lemon frosting. Last time I made a cake for him! Another time, at a restaurant, as we were fooling around with the silverware I got a lemon seed flicked right into my eye. Bugs. Beverages. You name it. Straight for the eyes. If I could find a pair of goggles that didn't make me look like a freak I'd wear them.
I posted this @ 6/22/2005 02:46:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



I was recently discussing with my friends about music. I was being chided for having certain selections of music. I think it was a Christina Aguilera song that started it. What came of it was the revealing that the song I couldn't believe I had and would intentionally listen to was... something that I would never be able to justify.

Perhaps it is an overplayed song by an overhyped band. Perhaps it is the Macarena.

If you were to admit to liking one song that you are embarassed or ashamed to admit you liked, what would it be?

For me it would have to be NSync singing an a capella version of theBee Gees Jive Talking.

C'mon. Fess up!
I posted this @ 6/21/2005 02:44:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


STEAM by Peter Gabriel

Howl's Moving Castle (A-) is a fantastic movie. You don't have to have an appreciation for animation to enjoy this movie. It has a well-written plot and very believable characters. Set in a world where a war is ravaging the countryside, cities operate surprisingly well without any modern conveniences, and magical happenings are common place. A world that I recently learned was called steampunk genre. I guess I'd heard of the genre, but never new what exactly it meant.

I had seen this movie advertised on IMDb quite a bit. It was just a fluke that I noticed it in the paper last weekend. It was only playing on one screen and I can't imagine it will be there long. It just doesn't seem to have a wide market appeal. Which is a shame.

The story follow Sophie, a plain Jane hat maker, as she falls in love with the mysterious Howl, a wizard known by many names. Having been rescued by Howl, Sophie finds her life taking an unexpected turn when she is visited by The Witch of the Waste. The Witch is trying to get Howl's heart. She too is in love with him. She curses Sophie, trapping her in an old woman's body, unable to speak of the curse that she is under. She leaves to find a cure for her curse. Along the way Sophie meets a scarecrow she calls Turniphead, a wizards apprentice, Markl, and a fiesty fire demon named Billy Crystal. Ok, so his name is Calicifer, but you know it's Crystal's voice from the first line he spits out. She adopts Howl's Castle as her home, cleaning up after Howl and Markl. In learning about Calicifer's curse, Sophie accepts an exchange if she can get her own curse lifted.

Meanwhile, a Prince has gone missing and a war has broken out between two countries. Magicians of all kinds are being summoned by their respective nations to fight for their country. Having pledged himself to two different King's under two different names, Howl's fesses that he doesn't want to fight for either one. He doesn't want to be tied down. He doesn't want to feel like he has any responsibilities. What Howl finds is Sophie.

I love the fact that the characters in these movies just take such magical and impressive events as such commonplace occurrences. Gooey monsters chasing you? Oh that happens to someone every once in a while. A huge shanty walking over the hills? That happens at least once a week. It's all part of the type of film, and I love it! It inspires the imagination. These stories are modern day fables and fairy tales with morals to the story.

The voice acting is very well done. I enjoy playing the game of Guess Who's Voice played each person. Billy Crystal would be my only reservation. Once I realized it was him, he's all I could picture when Calicifer spoke. But that's not a slam. He does the part well.

Even though, the movie is just shy of two hours, there is a moment where the story is kind of slow. You know something is going to happen. You know the big climax is coming, but they spend a few too many extra minutes talking about details that I don't want to spoil. They probably could've left it out of the theatrical release and included them on the Extended DVD and all would be fine. Or it could be I was so looking forward to finding out how the movie ends that I didn't want to waste any time with backstory. I've accepted that a huge castle moves around on four chicken legs and is run by a sentient ball of fire. You don't have to explain to me why Howl felt safe in a cottage in the hills.

It is amazing on the big screen. But I think most people would be ok seeing it no matter what the screen size is. It's family friendly, but it's not necessarily a kid's cartoon. I will definitely own this movie.
I posted this @ 6/20/2005 03:02:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


  1. Domesticated:: Animal
  2. Cask:: Flask
  3. Wayne:: Newtown
  4. Insidious:: Darth
  5. Cool!:: Dude!
  6. Dishwasher:: Lawnmower
  7. Little house:: on her prairie
  8. Stepford:: Wives
  9. Hung:: William
  10. Falling:: for the first time
I posted this @ 6/20/2005 02:51:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


DREAM BABY by Roy Orbison

Ok so I had a dream the other night. It was a two-parter that really didn't seem to connect, but it was like there was a commercial break and then back to the dream.

The first part of the dream was very brief. I was hiking somewhere very cold. It was a nondescript mountain path. We weren't up very high or on a narrow path. The snow had the feel of Dippin' Dots or those little foam beads that are in side bean bags. I was hiking with a couple other people who didn't play any part at all. I sat down for a break. We were waiting for someone to show up and then we were going to start hiking again. All of the sudden a SVU pulls up along the path and one of my co-workers gets out. She had just got back from her vacation in Aruba. I specifically remember where she went on vacation because as she complained about how cold it was, I asked her how the weather was in Aruba, in a friendly mocking tone.

I don't know if I woke up at some point and then went back to sleep or if I just recall both dreams as one continuous event.

In the second part of the dream I was taking a tour of a house with Little. It was a good sized home with lots of windows and a very open floor plan. It was as if each floor of the house didn't have any walls dividing the rooms (at least on the floor I was on). We were on the second floor and you could see the support columns in the room, but like I said, no real room dividing walls. There were a lot of boxes of books and various unpacked belongings on the second floor. It was more like an attic than an actual living area of a house. Not unclean. Just not furnished like a house. There were two heavy-set ladies showing us around the house. They looked familiar, but I couldn't place the face. The explained to us that in this three story home one family lived on the first floor and another family lived on the third floor, she said, making a gesture to a set of stairs that led upstairs and down. There was a large crate that had a lot of paintings and framed artwork and posters. I was flipping through the crate looking at each piece. They were set up in the way you might find them set up in a store. You tilt one forward to see the one behind it. The old of the two ladies chided me for not being more careful with the paintings. Even though the piece I was currently looking at seemed like nothing more that a child's cartoon character, she explained that several of them were hand painted by the original artist who first created the beloved childhood toon.

As we continued to walk around the house we came upon a room with a sink (bathroom, kitchen, I don't really know) that was very brightly colored. The painted seemed to be peeling in some places (or worn away on purpose) The colors ranged from a vivid ocean blue to a bright flamingo pink with some purples here and there where the colors faded into each other. I was quite surprised by such a loud choice of room color. It had a tropical feel to it. I even mentioned that it looked like something you'd seen in Aruba.

Again, Aruba.

As Little Chris and I were leaving I asked him if he knew who the two ladies were. He didn't know their first names, but knew their last name. It turned out that they were my aunt and cousin on my biological Mother's side of the family. These are people that I haven't seen in years. The more I started thinking about the house, it reminded me of my maternal Grandparents home in Nebraska City. My recollection of their house is very dark. Not in a bad way, but dark wood, dark carpeting, dark colored furniture. The kitchen was the only light colored room in the place, but not done in any crazy colors.

Looking at what is currently going on in my waking life. The co-worker that made an appearance is getting married soon and will be eventually going on a honeymoon, but not to Aruba. There has been a lot in the news about Aruba, with the disapperance of a young woman. I recently added some baby photos, one of which included me at my maternal Grandparents house. While I don't know how long last scene relatives fit into the picture, I suppose in a dream not eveything has to make sense. I guess my brain was chugging and regurgetating all that it had witnessed lately.
I posted this @ 6/16/2005 02:17:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



Ok... So I wrote about Elektra, but it was rather long. Ok. I recapped the whole damned movie. You can read it here.
I posted this @ 6/15/2005 07:22:00 PM.............Need a link?..........

HURT by Nine Inch Nails

Not that I would paint my nails. First I'd need to have nails worth painting... but this is cool!!
I posted this @ 6/15/2005 06:52:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


I found this at both Firebrand's and Flower's blog.


Go to Google and click on the “Images” link. Type in the following and post the first (or your favorite) picture the search engine finds.

- The name of the town where you grew up
- The name of the town where you live now
- Your name
- Your Grandmother’s name (yeah, I know you probably had 2 (or more); just pick one)
- Your favorite food
- Your favorite drink
- Your favorite song
- Your favorite smell

The Results:

- The name of the town where I grew up
- The name of the town where I live now
- My name
- My Grandmother’s name
- My favorite food
- My favorite drink
- My favorite song
- My favorite smell
I posted this @ 6/15/2005 05:26:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


THRILLER by Michael Jackson

I'm sure there are tons of people out ther eblogging about this at this very moment, but I've got to get this off my chest. Rather than unload it in someone else's comment box I might as well post it on my own.

Michael. Jackson.

I didn't watch coverage of the trial on television. I couldn't. I wouldn't. Yet, I did read about the trial on various news websites (MSNBC mainly). I've read where the jurors say that they looked at the evidence and made a clear decision based on that evidence. They acquited him of the charges. Which in itself I find to be a sly choice of words. Unless you can prove something beyond a reasonable doubt, then there is always that question lurking. That "what if..." that has yet to be answered.

Statements from Jackson's lawyers are saying that Jackson will no longer "share his bed with young boys." Whether any molestation occured or not, don't you think that since he admitted such occurences that it alone would be reason enough to find him at least in need of some help of some sort. OF course not all the blame is his. I can't imagine any parent who wouldn't find a man three times the age of a young boy sharing a bed odd.

Now let's say Jackson was convicted. There would've been an appeal. At least one big one and who knows how long they could drag that out. Jackson obviously has some problems dealing with stressful situations. Prison would certainly fall under the heading of Stressful Situations. I read an article (that I can't find now) where it was said what all would go into locking him up. He would be secluded from other inmates. He would most likely be on 24-hour suicide watch because of his fragile mental status. His meals would be prepared by official prison staff, not the same workers/inmates who prepare other meals. That seems like a lot of extraordinary measures for someone who could've been found guilty.

I'm torn in many ways. I'm glad that Jackson's money didn't seem to be a huge issue. Even though they probably could have drawn the case out for ever. I'm glad they didn't. I'm glad that the case itself never seemed to get as technical as the OJ trial seemed to. I wouldn't have wanted to hear about Jackson trying on gloves (and other assorted items) to see if they fit.

Ok. Personally opinion... I think that there was definitely something peculiar happening. I think that there are a lot of people who are trying to get what they can from Michael Jackson, on both sides of the fence. I think the accusers are seeking what they feel they are entitled as a result of what happened. I think there are people in Jackson's entourage who are protecting there meal wagon. If Jackson was to go to prison what would happen to them? I think that there are a lot of people who work for Jackson that, in the interest of protecting their interests, made decisions that Jackson himself might not have made. He doesn't deal with stress well. Someone starts accusing him of such things, do you think he handles the situation on his own or has someone 'take care' of it for him.

Toss them all in counseling and get them help for their various issues. Just get off my television. There is no need to interrupt regular programming to tell me a verdict.
I posted this @ 6/14/2005 02:45:00 AM.............Need a link?..........



  1. Wally:: Tadger
  2. Phantom:: of the Opera
  3. Slippery:: When Wet
  4. Fungus:: Fungi
  5. Slot:: Machine
  6. Type:: Blood
  7. Discharge:: Let go
  8. "We need to talk”:: "Uh-oh."
  9. On the spot:: Lickity-split
  10. Liquid:: Courage
I posted this @ 6/13/2005 05:07:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


TIME IS ON MY SIDE by The Rolling Stones

I recently visited my Grandparents. It was a very overdue visit.

My Grandparents have been fortunate enough to be relatively good health for being in their 80s. My Grandmother has always been a worrier. (Thanks for passing that trait on.) She grew up during the The Depression, which means, she learned to live lean when times were tough. That carried on for the rest of her life.

My Grandfather is basically the same. A child of The Depression, who went to serve his country in World War II. A man who farmed as well as worked for other farmers later in life. A man who keeps his true feelings to himself. He has his own subtle ways to let you know he cares.

I say they are in relatively good health with valid reason. My Grandfather smoked for over 40 years. He finally quit when he developed pneumonia one winter. He coughed and hacked so much that it weakened his heart. Since then he will go to the hospital a couple times a year with breathing related concerns. He is on various medications to control his blood pressure and help his lung capacity. Yet he remains quite active. He gardens. He talks frequent short walks. He avidly works on crossword and jumble puzzles. His hearing is shot though. You can always tell when he's watching TV. You can hear it plainly in various rooms of the house.

My Grandmother diagnosis her own ailments. It took several years of prodding to get her to go get a physical. She, like many, had the notion that once a person goes to the doctor, they find something wrong and one things leads to another and then after a while they won't let you leave. Like a roach motel, you check in, until you 'check out.' A few years ago she came to her sense and had a minor surgical operation to remove a benign cyst that had bothered her for years (as long as I can remember her). She began taking blood pressure medication and watched what she ate in regards to a health diabetic lifestyle. She is not as outgoing and active as my Grandfather, but she gardens and will occasionally go on trips with her cousin/best friend.

No one likes to talk about death. People are capable of speaking of it, some just choose other, lighter topics of conversation. Since I've been living on my own I find that my visits back to their home usually carry a surprise.

I walked in the door of their home on my 23rd birthday and the first words out of my Grandmother's mouth were not Happy Birthday or any other kind of appropriate greeting. Instead she choose, "Can you look over my will?" as her opener. I tell this story jokingly, but there is always that underlying feeling of mortality. Of course they are older and the inevitable will be just that. I don't fool myself thinking they will be around forever. Yet, that's not exactly how anyone wants to start off their birthday. We joke about it now. (Sidenote: I never did look their will over that day)

This latest visit, my Grandmother physically looked older. She looked different. There was something about the way she carried herself that reminded me of when I was 8 years old. Back then, my Great Grandmother also lived with us. She helped out around the house while my Grandmother was still employed. She was a fiesty octogenarian herself back then. Stout Germany blood roared through her veins. The same blood that is in my Grandmother. When I saw her the other day, she looked more like her mother, my great grandmother, than I'd ever seen before. The way she would get up from the couch. The way she would carry herself as she walked around. The way her glasses looked on her. The same glasses that she had for years suddenly made her look like a totally different person.

In that instant she become her mother... and I was 8 years old again. Looking at my Grandmother as though I'd met her 'again' somehow. It was unnerving.

My Great Grandmother was in her early 80s when she died. She passed away in her sleep in her Falls City home. The details of that story I'll hold off on till another day. My Grandmother has already lived longer than her mother. This latest visit seemed to solidify the feeling that nothing last forever.

I know there will be regrets when that 'one day' comes, but I'm doing what I can now too make sure there is at least not as many.
I posted this @ 6/12/2005 07:44:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



Is Rhubarb a vegetable or fruit?

Why is belly button lint typically blue no matter what color shirt you wear?

Is there any truth to the "five second rule" about food that falls on the floor?

What if the Hokey Pokey IS really what it's all about?

How do we know severn dog year is equal to one human year?

Why do hot dogs come in packages of 10 and hot dog buns in packages of 8?

Who would you kick out of bed, The Hamburgerler, Birdie, or Grimace?

Is it true that what happen in Vegas stays in Vegas?
I posted this @ 6/11/2005 01:06:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


DON'T TALK by 10,000 Maniacs

I came across Tony Pierce's blog through Wil Wheton's blog. I thought this article was insightful in reagards to the world of blogging and wanted to share it with you.

Do you suffer from blogger burnout?

1. when your internal dialogue gets hijacked by your concerns about what your readers will think.
2. when you are afraid to write down what you are truly thinking about at that moment.
3. when you believe the lie that some people just arent capable of good writing.
4. when you believe the lie that there is a certain way that you "should" write anything.
5. when you get more involved in punctuation, spelling, or aestetics than saying what you want to say.
6. when you get caught up in traffic, hits, popularity, readers, and/or fame.
7. when you believe the lie that what you think doesnt matter.
8. when you believe the lie that what youre about to say has been said before and/or written down better.
9. when you forget that most ideas can be expressed in less than 15 minutes.
10. when you dont set aside a little bit of time each day to update your blog.
I posted this @ 6/08/2005 05:05:00 AM.............Need a link?..........



Work has been rather oddly tense lately. There has been a "hurry-up then wait" sense of urgency about some issues, while other issues go by the way side. There are a lot of busy people trying to juggle many projects all at once. I am a part of just one of the juggled projects that needs attention and direction from time to time.

Working on a grant is a new experience for me. It is a finite job with a definite goal and sense of what people are hoping to accomplish when it is all said and done. I went into this job knowing that it would eventually end and I'd be back to where I was last year, looking for a new job. That is never a prospect I enjoy. Who really does?

Maybe people are gun-shy with good reason. It is starting to seem that anytime there is a small possibility of something going awry people are looking for the lifeboats. Be prepared. Have a plan of attack/defense. That's responsible. That makes sense. I think after a certain point it becomes pessimistic.

Those of you who know me well, may disagree or agree with this, but I think I am a pretty optimistic person. Or at the very least, I'm not a pessimistic person. After a while, too much pessimism just wears on me. It's hard to take.

Am I being foolish by not doing more when someone says the sky is falling?
I posted this @ 6/07/2005 02:39:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



  1. Exhibit:: Display
  2. Evolution:: Revolution
  3. Loser:: Soy un perdedor
  4. Hypnotic:: Trance
  5. Unlikely:: Improbable
  6. Interrupt:: Disturbed
  7. Ambivalent:: Meh...
  8. Rise and fall:: Breathing
  9. Indian:: Ocean
  10. Prophecy:: Christopher Walken
I posted this @ 6/06/2005 05:04:00 AM.............Need a link?..........



This is just a test post to see when Blogger actually starts posting the posts that I've posted.
I posted this @ 6/05/2005 01:22:00 AM.............Need a link?..........



This is definitely going to be a rambling post. You've been warned. Enjoy!

I'm feeling very profound lately. Not that this or any recent post will automatically reflect this. Yet there are things that happen that I feel affect me in a way that makes me 'feel...' Sometimes it is a television show or movie or something I've read or something that someone important to me said. Sometimes it is seeing an event. Like seeing my brother graduate or seeing a couple with their newborn child. Sometimes I will feel inspired by such a moment. Sometimes I will feel like a change for the better is needed.

If I was to have a good idea for a screenplay or book, it never seems to come to fruition. Not because I can't follow through on an idea, but typically because I can't find the right words to express the point I want to make. It's not for a lack of words, but most of the times I don't think the words I would use best convey the sentiment I mean. The fix would mean more than getting a Word-of-the-Day calendar.

In a way I wonder if I haven't found my 'voice' yet. Maybe I haven't found something to be passionate about. So passionate that I can express myself clearly and move somebody to want to find their own profound moment. Yet I feel like I'm on the verge of a profound moment. It's on the tip of my tongue, so to speak. Have you seen a program where there is someone standing on a cliff or roof ledge and there are people trying to talk them down. There is that moment where you can plainly see that they are contemplating their actions. The tension in the air is thick because of such a life changing moment. While I'm certainly not thinking about jumping off anything or even anything dire at all, my point is the profundity of what is going on. Once again, maybe not the best choice of words... See what I mean?

When I hear about someone who has had such a profound moment in their life because of something I will often question if I've had a moment like that. If so, what was it and can I recapture that moment. If not, how do I go about finding such? Maybe they had a book published before they were thirty. Maybe they realized their career choice early on and have made great strides in their field. Maybe they tapped into a talent they posses and have made a life out of it. And then the key... to be happy doing it.

I recall taking a psychology class in college. It was a night class that last for three and a half hours in the spring semester. While it was a rewarding class, the late winter snow made my motivation to attend very low. Then the professor talked in class about how she lets children draw pictures to allow kids who may not have the words, to express how they feel. She gave us each a sheet of paper and some crayons and everyone in the class drew a picture. The range of what was produced was just as varied as the students in her class. We all sat around and watched as she analyzed each picture. I drew a humpback whale as it displayed it's fluke before heading back down deep into the ocean. I had a couple whale posters and was always enthralled by watching them on television. I had a poster in my room similar tot he image I created using crayon for the in-class project. While the analysis part was voluntary, I didn't have a problem with sharing my picture with the class. I was curious to know what she might say based on such an image. She asked a couple questions that prompted me to describe the image. After giving it a couple moments of thought she asked if I was an only child. She asked if my parents were still together. She made a couple observations that I feel have a deeper meaning now than they did then.

One girl had only used black. She make various amoebic shapes on her paper. Connecting amoebic piece to amoebic piece like a puzzle until the entire page was full. She had then taken each piece, sectioned it off equally, and blacked out in every other section in every piece. I had noticed that she did this on notes she took during class. So I wasn't surprised that she drew that for the assignment. The Professor asked her if she felt she was in control of her life. She said yes. She asked her what kind of responsibilities or other things she had going on in her day to day life. She listed off almost a dozen major things she does in a day, taking time to explain the complexity of some of them. She asked how long it had been since she had taken a vacation from her job. She had a lot of balls to juggle, but managed to keep they all going. The 'choas' in this girl's life was controlled chaos. Well thought about and orangized.

I was amazed! It didn't take words to express a feeling. It didn't take deep thought to honestly express a sentiment. All it took was tapping in to a purer form of expression. While I knew that psychology was something I wanted to study and one day use as a career, I believe it was at that moment when I realized the positive effect I could have on others and be happy doing it. My career could move me. I could use my own life experiences coupled with career education to make an impact in someone else's life.

Some people draw. Some people write. Some people take photographs. Something that moves them to the point that they can get lost in the feeling. I honestly believe everyone should have an expressive outlet.

You may have seen performers who get into their music. They will move around as thought the entire body is what is producing the music, not just the instrument. Pianists will sway and jerk about as they strike various chords and lulls us with various melodies. Singers will make fists and stomp about as they hit and hold amazingly long notes.

I play piano by ear. I will take a song that I enjoy and slowly peck out whatever part that I feel sticks out the most. I practice it, then build off that. Sometimes I'll feel the bass line of a song. A low guitar sound that pushes the melody to the foreground. Once I've learned the bass part I may add the melody (the vocals). Maybe there is a chorus or a song that has a nice hook to it. I'll add that. By now I've got a good basic idea of how the tune fits together. How is each part is played and what I can add to it? Accompaniments. Drums and rhythm. I practice it until I can play all or most parts and have it sound like the song I took inspiration from. As I play my version of the completed song I will catch myself moving my head about. I not only hear the music but I can feel it. I know when a crescendo is coming and how it makes me feel when a minor chord changes to become a happier major. While I can get such a natural high from playing a song, I don't think I missed a calling by not going into music. My dedication to music wasn't to the level that it should be in order to be successful at a career level. It was one of those things that was great while it lasted and something to now enjoy as a hobby.

Maybe I actually came to a point in my train of thought... Maybe I didn't. That's the gamble you take. :-)
I posted this @ 6/02/2005 02:44:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



I posted this @ 6/02/2005 12:59:00 PM.............Need a link?..........



Ok first of all, I just found out a the title of song I'd been trying to figure out for quite some time now. It was found accidentally while confirming the singer in this entries title. Cha Cha Slide by Casper. Go me! Or... at least, Go Lucky Accidents of Fortune!

Ok so down to business... I finally saw

ELEKTRA (C) - I am a huge Jenifer Garner fan. I was thrilled when she was going to play opposite of Ben Affleck in Daredevil. While the movie was what it was (a comic book movie that will never be able to live up to the standards anyone who has read a comic book for longer than most relationships last), I was excited when I heard that Elektra would get her own movie out of it. Bonus! I love Alias. I am considering starting (or joining) a campaign that would get Jenifer Garner to be the next James Bond Femme. Typecasting? Oh sure. But with good reason. She's excellent at kicking ass in various wigs and accents.

Oh yeah. That's right. There was a movie.

Elektra (Garner) is an assassin for hire. The movie opens showing, DeMarco, a wealthy man obviously accepting his fate as a dead man. His well guarded house will be no match for the killer that is after him. His most trusted goon, Bauer, sits at a computer console monitoring the other guards status. Enter Elektra. She easily does away with all the compounds inner guards. As Elektra approaches the door where her mark is waiting for his fate, Bauer pulls out an automatic weapon and Swiss cheeses the door. Surely that would kill an assassin that managed to get past everyone else. She easily kills Bauer and sneaks up behind DeMarco. THWOOM! Sai right through the upholstery, killing DeMarco. I don't think the police are going to be able to sell this place easily at the next auction.

Meanwhile, in what looks to be an Imperial Palace Buffet on top of a skyscraper 'someone else' is plotting their move. Roshi the leader of The Hand wants to find the Treasure and train her in the ways of their dark forces. While his right Hand man (pun intended) prefers the quick and stealthy approach, Roshi's son, Kirigi opts for a more direct and plot-worthy method.

Back at Casa Elektra she is furiously scrubbing her apartment floors when her 'agent', McCabe brings her the reward for DeMarco. It was funny for me at the time because I'd just recently watched an episode of Alias where Sydney was scrubbing her apartment sink in the same furious manner. I wonder if that is a 'talent' that she lists on her resume when doing auditions? McCabe informs her of another job that she has been specifically asked to do. Reluctantly she accepts, because the money is just too good too pass up. Which confuses me a little. I'm basing what I know about the character on what has been shown in Daredevil. Which is flawed, but then if you've never read comic books, but for some reason happen to catch both of these movies in a short time frame, you might ask the same question. Why does she need the money? Wasn't her father rich? Like I said, I know there is an actual backstory in the comics that would explain this, but... whatever.

Elektra takes the job and sets herself up in a very posh pad that is located just North of The Middle of Nowhere by a mountain lake. On the way to her latest job we get a flashback to Elektra in the back of an ambulance as she was in Daredevil. We then see her body in Stick's cabin, a former mentor. Stick brings her back to life using the power of his inner chi or some such nonsense. She then takes up training with Stick and the Stones (which isn't their real name, but would make a GREAT band name). We see Elektra kicking everyone's ass, but yet there is something wrong. She just isn't mastering all there is. Stick sends her away in a scene that is somewhat odd, but gives a lot of insight into what brought Elektra to the point she is now. Back to the present, once at the house she begins meticulously arranging her belongings. I imagine that she probably doesn't want or need a maid's turn down service each evening as she probably has to circle her bed ten times and measures how far she actually pulls back the sheets before getting in to bed. But don't we all have our little quirks. And this is why we love Elektra.

Elektra is told to wait... and wait... and wait... at this Frank Lloyd Wright-ian estate for her employer to contact her with the details of the job. While out for a swim Elektra flashes back to her childhood were her father is training her to tread water using only her legs in case she is paraplegic. Ah... Good times.

As she gets out of the water and goes back inside she notices that she is not alone. Being the highly skilled assassin that she is, she easily traps the burgurler in her house, by pinning a girls arm to the wall with a box cutter. Introduce Abby Miller. She swears she has a key and was just looking in on the house for the actual owners. Yeah, and I was just looking after that Bangles cassette circa 1985 by keeping it in my jacket pocket. Elektra forces her to turn over her stash which is her beloved necklace that her father gave her. Abby hopes that she won't tell her father about the incident. Father, Mark is the tall dark and handsome type who happens to have an incorrigible teenage daughter/amateur cat burgurlar/discipline problem.

That night Elektra has visions of her mother's death at the hand of some blurry shadowy demon that flits around fast enough so the special effects and make-up departments don't have to work overtime. She gets up and decides to work out. Thus showing off another point one her resume, "I do all my own stunts." She finds time to call McCabe and explain that if she hasn't heard anything from her employer soon she's gone.

Some undetermined time in the next couple of days Elektra is approached by Abby's Father, Mark Miller. He apologizes for Abby breaking in and hopes she didn't take or break anything.

Later, Abby spots Elektra zenning out by the lake. She approaches and talks to her about coming over for Christmas dinner. Because, didn't you know it was Christmas? Elektra didn't. I imagine she probably doesn't even count Christmas as anything more than a day when most of her kills are home. I think it's been a while since Santa left anything but coal in this girls red thigh-high boot. Abby talks her into dinner with her and Mark. No mother or girlfriend around, but we'll get to that. Elektra agrees taking note that Abby is counting the windows on Elektra's abode. "Are you counting?" Which I can see observing, but to call her out on such a seemingly innocuous detail. Sure it's a clue to the story, but... I think they could've demonstrated the same clue in a different less club-to-the-head way.

Elektra and Abby walk in the house where Mark is cooking dinner. Mr. Mom looks somewhat surprised at Elektra's arrival. Not upset. Just surprised. "Abby sweetie? What have I told you about bringing home hired killers?" C'mon! Hired killers need love too. What actually happens is Elektra realizes that Abby is trying to set them up. She apologies for intruding explaining Abby's invite to this thing they call Christmas Dinner. He graciously steps up to the plate and says that it isn't a problem at all. They sit down to a wonderful home cooked meal. Marie Calendar you're a godsend. We are privy to the main topics of this effervescent dinner conversation, including Elektra's 'job' and how the Millers are from... um.. Baltimore. Yeeeeah... Baltimore. Elektra notes a unique bracelet that Abby is wearing. It is given to very special warriors in Indonesia. Where did Abby get it? EBay... There is some obvious tension in the room, but it's getting so full of various tensions, both sexual and dramatic, that it's hard to tell where to start cutting. After dinner, we see Elektra watching from the porch as Mark puts Abby to sleep. Because Indonesian Warriors need at least 9 hours of rest a night in order to stay sharp. Mark and Elektra engage in some mindless banter, including that Abby's mother died in car crash, before Elektra says she needs to call it a night. She thanks him for the meal and in the blink of an eye is gone.

More flashbacks about blurry demons killing dear old mom. What a coincidence! Abby's mom has passed away as well. Abby seems to have the same obsessive compulsive tendencies as Elektra. Could there be something more to this girl that Mr. Mom isn't letting on?

When the mysterious mastermind finally does get in touch... guess who the hit is on. The spunky teen, Abby and her romantic lead of a father, Mark. Bet you didn't see that coming. What you also aren't supposed to see coming is the fact that Elektra can't go through with the job. She pulls out. While telling McCabe, he says that they will just end up finding someone else.

Elektra knows all! She realizes that the someone they'll send will be coming soon if not already there. She goes to talk to Mark and find out why anyone would want them dead. She arrives just in time to thwart the assassins, while stealthy, apparently they can only move at the speed of stupid and are easily done away with by Elektra, decomposing in a cloud of green crazy knock-out gas.

Run, kids! Run! Just grab whatever you can and get the hell out of there now! The Hand is coming. The Hand, I tells ya!!

Back at the Imperial Buffet and Bad Guy Emporium a meeting is being held. Kirigi enters explaining that the gassy ninja Roshi's right hand man sent have failed. It's time for the A-Team. Kirigi introduces the extras from the last season of HBO's Carnivale. Stone, a mighty club-wielding behemoth. Your typical strong dumb guy. Every team has one. Typhoid, the disease-ridden Elvira wanna-be. Some kids just never grow out of the Goth phase. This girl is bad news. Tattoo, the dwarf from Fantasy Island. Only now Tattoo is taller and covered from head to toe in body art thus making it nearly impossible for him to ever get a 9 to 5 suit and tie job. Can you imagine Casual Fridays? Roshi sends them off to obtain The Treasure. On the way out Typhoid gives a curious onlooker a nasty cough and cold sore. See? Told you she was bad news.

Elektra takes the Millers to meet Stick. She finds him hustling seedy bar patrons for money. Does he really need it? Once you've been a master martial artist is that all there is left to do? Instead of getting help, Stick helps Elektra to a taste of pool table felt. Stick sends Elektra away. "Big old blind meanie," Elektra scowls and stomps off. She leaves the Millers with Stick even though he didn't really say he'd help. Abby follows Elektra outside and begs her to stay with them. Elektra notices an odd bird painting on the brick wall. It blinks! She instructs them to get in the vehicle and they leave quickly. I told you idiots The Hand was coming.

As they drive off, Abby is asking all sort of personal questions and about two gum smacks from finding herself on the sharp end of a sai. Elektra complains about being a Soccer Mom. While I don't really blame her for being annoyed, she seems to have this odd relationship developing with Abby. She doesn't like her yet, but doesn't really not like her. She'll protect her from others only so she can kill her out of being bothered herself. God bless dysfunctional families. I can see the future holidays get togethers now. "Grandpa Stick. Tell me another story about when you dressed up as a woman and drove around the Outback of Australia!"

Once they reach McCabe's house, he reluctantly lets them crash. Don't you know he's thinking, "if I die trying to protect your red-leather ass, I'm SO gonna haunt you." Meanwhile, Abby pleads with her father to let her tell Elektra her secret. He says that she shouldn't because.. hey! Remember when she tried to kill you guys? Oh that's another funny story. Abby says that Elektra is a friend. Apparently not ejecting her, backseat and all, James Bond style has some how made them *heart* B.F.F. *heart* Hearing this Mark decides that he needs to get him some of that and succumbs to the sexual tension between him and Elektra. They kiss, despite her disclaimer that she's not a good person to get involved with. He apologizes for the kiss. She bats her Elektra-lashes and says she hated it too.

The next day Abby still has her switch set from Brooding to Perky. She examines and begins playing with Elektra's sais. For as OCD as they are playing Elektra off, I'm surprised she lets Abby do this. I'm surprised she doesn't give her a good scar to remember the lesson of Never Touch the Mean Red Leather Lady's Weapons. But they are best friends forever now so I guess it's ok. She asks Abby if she wants to learn something really difficult. Abby, agrees. They sit down on the floor and Elektra begins to explain kimagori. It can be used for all sorts of things, including bringing back the dead, as Stick once did to her. While Elektra hasn't mastered the power yet she has learned enough to see the future and keep herself alive. That'd be good enough for me. She explains to Abby how to enter a meditative state and before you know it Elektra "has left the building." Abby tries to do the same, but quickly tires of meditating and turns annoying. She tries to wake Elektra. She waves her hand in front of her face. Let's see her do that to Stick and watch her get a taste of pool table felt. But before Abby can startle Elektra, Elektra scares Abby with a loud scream. Which I'm thinking, while this Gilmore Girls moment is seemingly funny I can't imagine screaming in a house where you are being hunted by freaky ninjas a good thing. That's a good way to get shot. Mark comes in to see what's going on. McCabe rushes in as well, and noticing a bird perched outside the window. He shoots at it, claiming that it's been hanging around a lot the last couple of days. Sheesh. Paranoid much? Oh, but with good reason.

Kirigi and his gang are on the way. They've found them thanks to Tattoo's bird. McCabe's instructs Elektra to take the Millers down to the basement where there is a tunnel that will lead them away from the farm. McCabe will hold them off while he plots he nether-world haunting revenge on Elektra once he's dead. Kirigi comes in and uses his own version of kimogori to find out where they went, right before killing McCabe.

As Elektra rushes Abby to Mark to safety, Kirigi and his cohorts are already on their trail. Tattoo releases the beast within. Two wolves leap from his body. They split up and take off in a beam of growling light. Typhoid helps with deforestation and suddenly I'm reminded of an episode of Captain Planet. Stone does his own thing. Smashy. Smashy. Elektra instructs Abby and Mark to hide in the same cave that the Hobbit hid from the Wraits, while she deals with Stone. I should write a grant. Because there seems to be a inverse correlation between the strength of a villan and their intelligence. Elektra tries to stab Stone in the back with her blade and shatters it like ice. They don't call him Stone for nothing, girlie. They tussle a bit before Elektra takes to the trees. Stone throws his club at the tree and smashes a slice out of it bring the tree right down on top of him. Ok. So I was thinking... This guy is so impervious to punctures and presumably he got the name Stone for a reason. Bullets... Swords... Nothing. Yet a falling tree does him in. While effective, it just seemed to easy.

The wolves are next to find them. Elektra tells them to keep running, while she deals with them. What could they do to help? She's just a kid and his just a romantic lead actor. Abby breaks free of Mark's hold and goes out to help Elektra fend off the baddies. She takes off her bracelet, it glows as she thrashes it about like an expert. She takes down one bad guy before Elektra's eyes. Stunned by this occurrence she doesn't realize that Typhoid is right behind her. She spins Elektra around and plants a long deadly kiss on her. And yup... I'm gay, as this scene of girl-on-girl action is lost on me. Elektra is down!

Before things can get any worse, Stick and his clan show up to save the day. Well, not so much save it, as just stop it. Kirigi leaves, taking his remaining mutants with him.

Elektra is dreaming again and I hope this is going somewhere because there is only so many pointless flashbacks I can take. But before we can get a really good look at the shadowy killer this time, she is revived... again. I'm sure Stick really enjoys reviving her dead ass every few years. And we're at Stick's training camp in Japan? I dunno... The locations of these places are confusing me. I could presume they were in the Pacific Northwest in the beginning, but then to go from nowhere, to urban, to farmland ranch, to forrest, to Japan!? How are they traveling so quickly? And where is the Imperial Palace Buffet and Bad Guy Emporium supposed to be located?

Elektra asks Stick if this was all part of a test. Sending her away. Setting her up to kill Abby and Mark. Like I said... Good family stories to tell the grandkids. Abby is learning to fight, but she is already better than most. She is a natural. Later we see Abby playing with Elektra's sais again. I'm telling you. Give an inch. Take a mile. She'll be borrowing her clothes, next you know. Elektra walks up to her room, counting as she goes. See?! She counts too. I told you it was important. Abby and Elektra have a friendly spar. Elektra wins, but says that Abby will be MUCH better than her very soon. Yet, Abby just wants to be a normal girl. Well, you should've thought about that before deciding to be a bad girl in school.

That night Elektra is walking around the compound and enters the 'spirit realm' and speaks to Kirigi about settling this fight for Abby. They decide to meet at Elektra's childhood home. Which is also in Japan? Seriously, folks... Where are these people?

She changes into her red outfit. It's about time. It's her most recognizable feature. If someone is too see this movie on cable someday they might confuse it for an episode of Alias. Not that it's a bad thing.

Kirigi sets a fiery trap for Kirigi's own set of gassy ninjas. They just don't make henchman like they used to make them. Back at the House of Sticks, Abby wakes up and realizes that Elektra isn't there. Back in the mansion Elektra a room of furniture which is covered in the perfect visual effect a fight scene could make use of. Sheets! Lots of sheets. As Kirigi and Elektra fight, the sheets fly around the room blocking your vision from most of the really good moves. Just as Elektra is about to join her dead mother Abby comes in and saves the day with her magical bangle of smiting +1. The tables turn and now Abby is on the killing end of Kirigi's blade. So it's only fair Elektra return the favor. The head out of the mansion and into a hedge maze. Do all mansions have hedge mazes? I'd have one, but I'm just wondering if they come standard or if that is an option.

They get separated running through the maze. Tattoo and Typhoid show up to help. Tattoo release a metric poopload of snakes that take off after Abby. Thus giving her a new neurosis on top of being slightly OCD. Typhoid finds the snake covered Abby. She tried to fight her using her Bangle of Smiting +1, but Typhoid rusts it away. Abby goes down with a long sweet kiss goodnight. Typhoid is a little jealous of not being The Treasure anymore and decides to keep this little death a secret all to herself. Elsewhere, Elektra and Kirigi battle anti-climatically. Elektra recalls that it was Kirigi who killed her mom. Kirigi meets her sai in perfect position to fall right down the well they were fighting around. Elektra looks up and goes second-sight and sees Abby dead with Typhoid standing over her. She launches a sai through several hedged and strikes Typhoid squarely in the back.

Elektra picks up Abby's body and takes it back to the mansion and puts her in bed. Elektra sits next to the girls body and cries. Which, once again, they're best friends again. Elektra recalls Stick's parlor trick of bringing back the dead. Can she do it?! Of course she can, because how can you kill the kid the hero is supposed to save. Abby wakes up and they hug.

The next morning Abby is doing well. She asks Elektra to sign her Stick High School yearbook and then they giggle about boys. Riding this euphoric wave of good feelings Elektra goes to Mark and kisses him. Abby is upset that Elektra is leaving, but she is sure they'll meet again. Elektra leaves the mansion and meets up with Stick outside. She tells him that she doesn't want Abby to turn out like her. Stick shows the first bit of compassion by saying that Elektra didn't turn out so bad. She comments that the second life is sometimes better than the first. So hopefully in Elektra case her third one.
I posted this @ 6/01/2005 07:18:00 PM.............Need a link?..........


  1. Crowd:: Pleaser
  2. Hamburger:: -ler
  3. Choker:: Necklace
  4. Lights:: Camera! Action!
  5. Tinsel:: Town
  6. Testament:: Witness
  7. Best part of the day:: "The best part of waking up.. is Folger's in your cup."
  8. Election:: Day
  9. Clarinet:: Oboe
  10. Dead Sea:: Scrolls
I posted this @ 6/01/2005 02:47:00 PM.............Need a link?..........

LEARN TO FLY by Foo Fighters

or... POMP & CIRCUMSTANCE by Elgar

I am back from my Memorial Day Weekend trip to see my brother's high school graduation. The whole family tree thing is complicated so just go with what I tell you and I can make a flow chart later if needed. There were quite a few people staying in the same household. Which is ok because it is a good sized house. Ok. Brace yourself and concentrate. In attendance were my brother (obviously), his little sister (half-sister), his mother, step-father, step-father's father and step-mother, step-father's mother and step-father, step-aunt, and myself. Ok... Confused yet? Anyway...

I typically make the 11 hour drive to see him. I like to drive. I like the drive. So I don't mind the time it takes to get there. Yet, this time I chose to fly. Simply because of the amount of time I would have to spend if I didn't. Overall, I don't mind flying. I love being able to look at the window and see the ground so far below. It reminds me of playing Sim City. You can see the patterns the farmers make in their fields. You get to see the patchwork of farms that blanket the countryside. It really is beautiful.

The downside to all that beauty is the take-offs and landings. Any bit of turbulence and I am clinching on to the arm rests so tightly that I'm pretty sure I could snap it off the seat rather easily. I had a connection flight down to Kentucky and back. So four times I was blessed with experiencing the joy's of take-offs and landings. That slow roller coaster feel of hurtling tens of thousands of feet into the air only to descend once again. At least on a rollercoaster it's over in a fraction of a second. The bumps and drops a plane makes would just about do me in. I definitely try to go to my happy place when this happens. Luckily, all four flights were relatively smooth. Only the last leg of my flight into Omaha really gave me any serious anxiety. Coming out of a cloud bank and then SUDDENLY seeing the ground was not the way I felt like landing. Could you guess that I never wanted to be a pilot growing up?

The graduation was good. He went to a larger school than I did and had about three and a half times more kids than I had in my class. Whereas my two hour graduation was filled with choirs singing songs and high ranking classmates giving speeches, my little brother's graduation was mainly filled with watching the kids walking in and get their diploma. Many folks showed up to see their child get their diploma and left right away to beat the traffic. I can't say that I blame them, when you have a few hundred cars all deciding to leave at once.

I took plenty of pictures that I will share once I get them uploaded.

For the most party I made it through the ceremony pretty well. I'm a sap. I love being a sap. I really only broke down when my little brother walked off the stage after receiving his diploma. "That's it," I thought to myself. He's done now. I have mentioned before how it can make me feel older when I really start to think about how I can remember a time before he was born. Yet, to see him graduate... It's not 'old' that I feel, it's proud.

You could say that proud is how you are supposed to feel. Yet, I don't know that everyone does. I don't know if everyone at that ceremony really cared if the person they were there to support graduated or not. I live for landmark moments like that. I think they are very defining points in a persons life. I remember my last day of school and sitting on the back of my car. I sat in the parking lot and just stared at my school, trying to take as much of it in as I could one last time before driving away and not having to go back for another class. I loved the excitement of knowing that I had graduated high school and walking up on stage to get my diploma. I relive the feeling when someone I care about graduates.

Switching gears for a moment. I would love to hear someone who graduated 10 years ago get up and give a speech to the graduates. I would love to hear someone step up to the microphone and give a very weathered and 'realistic' viewpoint of what happens after graduation. I don't think I'm being cynical when I say this. I am just reflecting on what has happened to me and most people that I know, after graduation. Some go off to college. Some start families right away. Some join the military. I would love to hear someone get up and give a speech about that percentage of graduates that end up doing A, B, or C after graduation. Not in a downer sort of way. Graduations are supposed to be a celebratory occasion. They could do it in a way that was still uplifting, but honest.

Not everyone will go to college. Not everyone will be the doctor or lawyer they wanted to be when the filled out their college applications. Some people will work long hours in unpleasant work conditions. Some people will go through many low-paying jobs before finding what they feel there are good at doing. What matters is being able to find happiness in your life and what you choose to do. Whatever that choice is. Be happy that you weren't accepted to your first choice college. You may meet your one-day spouse at your second choice college. Remember the bonds that you have with your friends from high school. They can be a part what gets you through the tough times when you feel lonely while away from home at an out-of-state university. Be thankful that not everyone moved away after graduation. When you come back to town, make every effort to get back in contact with them and establish or reaffirm bonds.

If you can look back at your years after high school and you're happier than you were when you were in high school. You probably doing something right. Write it down for a day when you when you don't feel like things are going your way.

Congratulations Nick and the rest of the Class of 2005! I'm so very proud of you!
I posted this @ 6/01/2005 02:40:00 PM.............Need a link?..........

I'm a 30-something student of human nature. A music-lovin', groove-shakin', laugh-inducin', dish-cookin', gossip-slingin', type of guy. This is my diary of sorts...

100 Things
How Well Do You Know Me?


Olbermann: Gay marriage is a question of love
Gay ex-governor says he's too poor for alimony
-Barack’s Gay Balance
Calif. Supreme Court rejects gay marriage ban
-Where the Bears don't fear to tread
ABBA Melody


"The Day I Helped Kill A Baby" - Joe.My.God.
"Summertime Blues" - Tomato Nation
"Mama Crazy" -
"Something I Will Never Forget" -
"OMG! It's a teenager." - Does This Mean...
"The God of Comedy Setup Lines" - Frolic & Detour
"Can't Handle The Tooth" - Hissyfit

F6 l c f+++! g+ m++ s(e)

B6 d- t k+ s u-- f i o+ x e+ l+ c

GSS d- s: a C++ W++ PS+ tv++ b+ e++ h- r++ y+

SMo/Ga/Ma A31 W+ H+ w h D+ E+ C++ e++ f Ma S+++

B3 f c-v g+ k? s--

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Counting Sheep
Originally uploaded by Fib.