Thursday, August 30, 2007

A Cheap Shot With Honor

Larry Craig, disgraced Republican restroom sex habitue, is a story I would only touch with tongs. It's a minefield of disgraceful punchlines, the kind yours truly avoids like the plague. I wouldn't stoop to coming up with double entendres about his sorry situation.

But I'd certainly be happy to reprint his own!

Via Radar Online, the headlines to editorials penned by Mr. Larry Craig. Enjoy!

• What's That Larry Been Up To?—August 20, 2004
• All is Fair in Love and War—July 5, 2007
• THIMBY - Thin My Backyard—June 28, 2007
• At Your Fingertips—July 15, 2005
• The Calm Before the Storm—February 16, 2007
• The Taxing Experience—March 9, 2006
• Lt. Ross Bales and the "Potato Peeler Kids"—November 2, 2006
• Time to Pack in Iraq?—June 22, 2006
• A Thief in the Night—May 25, 2006
• What Message Did We Send?—March 23, 2006
• A Secret No More—March 30, 2006
• The Snake River Keeps Us Moving—August 13, 2004
• Mayday, Mayday!—May 5, 2007
• Join me at the Boise Health Conference—February 6, 2004
• O Long May it Wave—June 15, 2006
• Cowboy Up—July 21, 2005
• Where's the Beef?—August 9, 2007

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Weather Report

I work right now 3 miles from where I live. Normally this is great; but today the area will boast a local Los Angeles high of 110 degrees. So I can't escape it until after 5:00pm. If I survive, perhaps I'll write to tell you how I did.

Monday, August 27, 2007

AG Not AG for Long

The biggest sign of Alberto Gonzalez' incompetence is perhaps this - the decision to resign was made on Friday but he chose to delay the announcement until MONDAY MORNING. Honestly, does he know nothing about news cycles?

I don't think I'm going to miss the guy. He's so colorless. Janet Reno had presence, for god's sake. John Ashcroft, in addition to his erstwhile singing career, was ballsy enough to cover the bare breasts on the statues during his watch. Gonzalez? He'll be remembered as the guy who refused to acknowlege his boldest moves, who couldn't remember anything he did. Why should I?

A.G. is another in a long line of Bush appointees who had been given the task of crossing the ethical line while keeping it legal, while having no actual finesse or skill in those areas. Simply put, he didn't have the charisma to pull it off. His partner in August resignation, Karl Rove, at least could claim to have those skills. However, he was so good at it that he aimed too high and tried to get away with illegal things. He may still, but at the cost of his position. That's gotta hurt the President, who is rapidly exhausting his talent pool as he digs deeper to find competent people who are also willing to remain loyal under any circumstances.

The ship of state is going to have an awful lot of trouble avoiding the reefs for the next year or so.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


I just killed part of my lunch hour at the mall, toying with the iPhones at the Apple store. What is the strange allure of this candy-bar-like device, which costs about $600 more than the phone I currently carry?

Around March I'll have the option of upgragding my phone under my current contract, which I have two years left on. I think that's when I'll make my move. As it happens I could also stand to replace my laptop, which is aging (in the same way that Joan Collins is aging, that is to say it's old and I can barely stand to look at it any more, even though it's got a fine bone structure); and my iPod Nano by then should have a battery life of around 35 minutes between charges. When I look at it this way, I'll be saving approximately $1000 if I buy an iPhone. Plus I'll be able to watch videos!

Of course, blogging will be less fun. I'm not thrilled with the virtual keyboard thingie, and I type 65 wpm on a REAL keyboard. This is slightly faster than I think. One of the reasons blogging is so much fun for me is that I can read something I just wrote and say, "that's my opinion?" So expect better reasoning from iPhone posts, unfortunately.

Another good factor in this is by March, the major updates will be in place, and maybe there will even be a price reduction in the post-holiday season, as the even newer iPhones will be just around the corner. It'll be after MacWorld, after all. Who knows what fun little things will come out of that convention?

Honestly, I can't wait to be able to carry my porn around and watch it at lunch.

That's my opinion?

Monday, August 20, 2007

I Return to the Stage; the Stage Sighs Helplessly

Ha ha, I've done it again! Last year around this time I auditioned for two local amateur theater productions. I didn't make it into the first one, because even though the producer liked me he thought that audiences wouldn't buy me playing a 40-year-old man. I was 44 at the time. But I did make the second audition a week later and got cast as ex-college-football-star-turned-artist in HERE LIES JEREMY TROY, a warhorse mistaken-identity farce from the mid -sixties.

Tonight I auditioned for the part of Tim, a New York womanizer in his mid twenties, in a play I can't even remember the title of (it's brand new! I'll OWN that part!) and got it. I have to say, this is not a tribute to my talent as much as it is a sad commentary on the level of my competition. If there was any. While I was there I didn't see anyone else reading for Tim. It was all 50-year-olds trying out for the 40-year-old's part. Maybe some other Tims showed up later. I will have the grace to not ask about it.

I hope to God I didn't get the part because of my New York accent. Because I don't have one of my own, I read with, swear to god, a Jay Leno impersonation. I figure it was good enough for Kenneth Branaugh in DEAD AGAIN, so why not me? Point is, the voice was a desperation move and if I'm lucky the director will gently steer me toward something more authentic.

The time I spent last year on that play was the oasis in an otherwise miserable existence and while I'm surprisingly much less miserable this year, it will probably still be refreshing enough.

It was also the first day of my new job, which I can already tell I'll have wired by Wednesday. I'm working below my intelligence, which is why I always seem to do so well in these jobs. Because I don't have a degree, I can't seem to get anything better. Since I'm starting a new life, I should really, REALLY look into this.

Friday, August 17, 2007

In Which I Modify a Long-Standing Aesthetic Opinion

I just finished watching THE FOUNTAIN, Darren Aronofsky's sci-fi epic starring Hugh Jackman. Yes, I too think it sucked. It was overreaching, pretentious, murky and badly paced. It was also the most expensive of Aronofsky's three movies. Normally I would shrug it off and say "money ruins everything."

You know, I've long felt that. I've seen dozens of independent filmmakers do great little cheap features, only to be taken on by Hollywood to produce ungodly expensive crap. And I always assume it was the money that sucked all the life out of those movies.

But the production history of THE FOUNTAIN has given lie to that premise. The idea was germinating since the late nineties, and Aronofksy was pushing hard for this to be his next feature after LAST EXIT TO BROOKLYN. He had it all set up, with Brad Pitt as the star, and then Pitt walked out and the studio pulled the plug. Aronofsky re imangined the movie as a at half the budget, roped Hugh Jackman into the lead, and got it made, presumably with complete artistic control.

Given this scenario, it's clear that at least some times I was wrong. Big money doesn't cause bad movies. Big egos do. Once a guy puts out an acclaimed cheapie he thinks he can do anything, and he DEMANDS big money. Maybe the studio heads are right. Maybe that's what happened with EVAN ALMIGHTY and WATERWORLD and HEAVEN'S GATE. Maybe these people need to be slapped down for their own good.

Thank god I'm not trying to break into showbiz any more, because once this gets googled, I'd never work in this town again.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

I Work At Dunder-Mifflin

I'm very pleased (okay, relieved) to report that I've just recieved an offer of employment from a printer supply company here in town. Good people (looks like, anyway) solid work and a four mile commute. I start Monday.

So that's one source of anxiety down, leaving only the other 1100.

If you are a British reader of this blog, please change the title to I work at Wernham Hogg.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Bloody Well Wright

Let me establish my boomer cred by admitting that I was looking forward all week to the free concert-in-the-park by Gary "Dream Weaver" Wright. I went, I saw, I took some pictures. Not bad. In the photo, note below the prominent SOPRANOS logo on the man's hat. I Love L.A.!

Gary Wright is a perfect choice for a free concert. For one thing, he is not a one-hit wonder like the Little River Band, who performed last week. Gary had two hits, the other one being LOVE IS ALIVE. Thus he is able to have a 45 minute set with a climax, a break for people to buy more kettle corn and barbecue, then come back for another set with another climax. Furthermore his hits are still in pretty good rotation on certain radio stations, which means that the younger generation has a fighting chance of knowing him. Finally the material is catchy and light as a feather, listenable without being troubling.

However, it didn't really work. Gary and the band were fine. They sounded great although there were a few mic problems. Maybe it was the heat. At 6:00pm the temperature was around 90 degrees. So try though they might, Mssrs Wright and company were unable to raise more than a tepid response from the crowd. I think we all dug it and everything, but we were just like, you know, mellow.

I learned a few things. Gary Wright is not the least bit British. He's American! But he got established in England with the band Spooky Tooth, which I have heard of without ever having heard. I read a lot of Rolling Stone when I was young. Also Wright played on a couple of George Harrison albums, and a book of indian poetry inspired DREAM WEAVER, his best-known work.

Well, the important thing is I got out of the apartment for a couple hours. Maybe I'll do the same next week, for the Zydecats. Oh how I wish they were the Hamonicats!

This last picture is best appreciated in conjunction with another blog called SUICIDE FOOD. They meticulously document the phenomenon of advertising depicting animals happily inviting you to eat them.

From now on you'll notice it EVERYwhere.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Bright Side of Global Warming

I was just watching the BBC News and they quoted an interesting statistic. Even though the frequency of "weather events" is measurably rising, the death toll from them is falling. Weather events, obviously, include flooding, hurricanes and such like. The BBC rep said that it's believed that the casualty rate is down because it is now easier to predict these things and the sheer frequency has put rescue crews at the top of their game.

So, there's your bright side - practice makes perfect! Let's pump a little more carbon into the atmosphere, to speed up the training!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

The Two Things I Accomplished Today

Actually I accomplished three things. One, I made my pasta with olive oil and basil. Note to self - next time, garlic powder too.

Two, kick ass job interview at the place the laid me off a couple of years ago, which put me into the job I was just laid off from last week. I think they'll make an offer, but it's a big company and it will probably take another week.

Finally, I have posted another Dark Meat show! This is the first new, non-rerun show in quite a few months. In order to make sure it gets heard, I name-checked Ron Paul. I can't wait to see the stats.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

You Can't Imagine How Boring I Can Be

Sherlock Holmes. Famous detective. Brilliant guy, if fictional. He had a few quirks, not the least of which was he was a drug addict. If there was not a case to occupy his mind, he would turn to cocaine, a 7% solution self-injected into his forearm.

I bring this up to explain why I'm not writing lately. Writing, you see, is my cocaine. It's something I do when my awesome mental powers aren't needed elsewhere. Sadly, I'm putting them to use in the service of getting my own life back together. Look, it was a bad week. My divorce progressed painfully, I moved out of my house and into the swinging bachelor pad, and the very day after I got into the new place they laid me off from my job. I worked for a subprime mortgage lender. Should have seen it comin'

Anyway you'd think I'd have more free time but I have less. I spend most of the weekday work hours looking for work. And surely you know that finding work is way more work than doing work. Then in the evenings, after the temp agencies are closed, I try to beat my little studio apartment into place. I have been haunting the thrift stores trying to find the perfect kitchen table, the best salt shakers. I've been keeping an eye out for the right shade of blonde wood. I've been going through my digital photo library and finding good pictures that don't have my ex-wife or ex-dogs in them.

I've been installing water filters so I don't have to buy bottled water.

I'm excited as hell because tomorrow they finally turn on the gas in this place and I can boil water and make my own pasta, which I will top with frozen meatballs, oregano, and olive oil.

Anyway, I have a job interview tomorrow and sooner or later I'll run out of things to buy for the place (I still have to find a set of throw pillows for that futon!) and then, I'll be writing all the time to alleviate the boredom of living in a tiny place like this.

Or, hopefully, dating.