Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Lookin' Maryland, Feelin' Minnesota

Going up to the Twin Cities this weekend for a well-earned break and a meal at J.D. Hoyt's and some good ole' fashioned Midwestern hospitality.

And steaks the size of Toronto.

So begins my Season of The Wedding. 4 weddings in six weeks, 3 in consecutive weeks. Brutal. Stephen and Picot. My old old girlfriend Heather. Joey. Eric. It's crazy. I'll be broke and so sick of taffeta. But, such is the issue with having friends. Sometimes you have to stand by and watch them wreck their lives ;-)

Interesting article on how the average German supported Hitler prior and during WWII. The author clearly is not a fan of the current Administration in the US, and makes several points - a couple admittedly valid - on the parallels between fear, lies and propaganda.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Finally Figured Out The Decemberists...

...the modern day version of Prefab Sprout. Songs full of drama and importance and amazing musicianship, but I'll take Paddy McAloons' silver voice over the incessant quavering of Colin Meloy's anyday.

Took me a while to figure it out.

I'll give The Decemberists another listen, past Meloy's voice and see if I can find something new.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Final Chapter of the Last Harry Potter Book Leaked!

BET you're wondering where I got THIS lil' gem? Seems plausible...


Harry wakes up surpised, not to be at Hogwarts, but in a British mental institution. His wizard cape has been replaced with a straitjacket; his wand no longer in his hand, only the cold steel chain of a handcuff. After being pumped full of an ungodly amount of L-dopamine, young adult Harold Potter looks up at Dr. Dreyfus Umbledor, an older Ugandan-English psychologist at the facility who smiled as the young man's eyes widen. "Hello Harold, how are you?" he asked our hero.

"Where am I? Where's my wand? I thought you were dead!" screamed Potter.

"I am very much alive, Harold, though I had to take a leave of absence since my divorce. It seems once again you're alive as well. You've been in a catatonic state for years. It's good to see you, to meet you face to face."

"Why am I bound? What happened to Snape? Where are my friends Ron and Hermione? What has He Who Must Not Be Named done to Hogwart's?" asked Potter.

Dr. Umbledor tossled the thick black hair of his young charge. "Harold, I've watched over you for nearly a decade, wondering what was going on in your beautiful mind. Despite our wonderful advances in mental health since the 1990s, we are unable to truly read minds. We could tell through brain wave monitors that your alpha waves and receptors were constantly firing. Your eye movements have been unlike anything we've ever seen in similar REM moments. It's almost as though you were alive while being completely asleep."

"Why am I bound, Dumbledore? I need to be released! I must fight..." exclaimed Potter.

"You were restrained to keep you from hurting yourself." Dr. Umbledor explained. He reached over to pick up a small hand mirror, and showed Potter the scar. "You gave yourself quite the nasty gash one day many years ago in one of your states. We bound you to protect you from yourself."

"But my friends Ron and Hermione!? Where are they? I must see them!" cried the exasperated youngster.

Dr. Umbledor looked quizzically at him. "Who are Ron and Hermonie?" he asked.

"You don't know Ron and Hermione? My Lord, Voldemort has gotten to you, too! You don't remember your three finest students at Hogwart's?" answered Potter by way of questions. He was convinced more than ever in the evil of Valdemort.

Dr Umbledor chuckled softly in acknowledgement. "Oh, Harold...I apologize. I had no idea that while you were in your state that you could synthesize exterior stimuli and incorporate them into your dreams. Ah, the power of the mind is so amazing! Harold, I'm afraid your friend Ron is nothing more than Ron, one of the janitors here at Azakbhan's Mental Health Facility..."

"Wait," interupted Harry. "you mean Azkaban?"

"Oh my. It appears you picked up on my pitiful trait of mixing up consonants. English is such a hard language to learn. I tried to learn it through music, and for years, I thought Mott the Hoople was Hott the Muggle. I still get them confused" said Umbledor.

"What's a Muggle, Professor?"

"I don't know, but I used to say it all the time. And Harold, I gave up teaching years ago. Hardly a Professor; simply a doctor now. Anyway, as I was saying, Ronald is a custodian here at Mopple's, and he hangs out at the Hero Mine, a comic book store in town. We believed that you could someday hear us, so all of us on staff would tell you stories from our day-to-day lives. Perhaps Ron told you about the store."

"But Hermione was my true friend. She is so lovely, the way she's grown. Her hair so lively, her eyes so brown, perhaps my great love!" extolled Potter.

"Either you read some Greek Mythology before you came here or you're thinking of Ron's tale. It's very much a comic book store, Harold. Full of many boys and men about your age. None of them have ever seen, let alone actually touch, a girl, and certainly none as lovely as you describe."

A wave of realization crashed into the storm breakers on Potter's face. He was wondering if he was under some sort of spell, but he felt a pain in his left shoulder far too acutely to be under one of Voldemort's sinister plans.

"Doctor Umbledor, why does my shoulder hurt so?"

The doctor looked at the young man's shoulder. "While you were sleeping, you were bitten by an exotic spider. Before you were bound, you would constantly itching it. We kept telling you to stop itching it, but you obviously didn't listen. Ron, the Janitor, took special attention to your area, always making sure your room was spotless. He'd tell you in that rough cockney drawl of his 'qwit itchin! Qwit itch!"

The doctor loosened the shackles on Potter's arms. "Here you go, young friend. You don't need these now."

Potter snapped up in bed, and snapped the pencil out from Dr. Umbledor's coat. He started to cast the Spell of Reality he learned while at Hogwart's, but something caught his eye - a pimple-and-pock-covered pig had walked into the room.

"Snape!" snapped Potter. "It must be you!"

"Oh, dear Harold!" exclaimed Dr. Umbeldor. "That's our pet hog, Viktor. He's a bit old, but he provides company to the patients while they sleep."

Potter looked at the walking pork chop. "He's covered in marks..."

"Yes" said Dr. Umbledor. "Warts from when he was a piglet. We couldn't send him to butcher, so we kept him on as a pet."

"Hog - warts..." said Potter slowly. "Quit Itch....Quidditch...Viktor..."

"Yes, Harold?" inquired Dr. Umbledor.

"I'm still a great wizard, right?" asked Potter."

"Wizard? Oh my boy, the only Wizards I know of play basketball back in America, and you're far too young, short and pale to be effective in their game."

"But I'm a champion...Quidditch player..."

"In your dreams, Harold. In your dreams you were legend, I'm sure. This, however" as he gestured around the sterile hospital room, "is reality. It's 2007; we haven't seen a wizard in England since the 1500s, at least."

"My Lord, Doctor...could it all have been a dream?"

"Perhaps," said Dr. Umbledor "it all was what you wanted it to be."

The young man sat back down in his bed. He had just been given news that would shake any lesser man to his knees - that his whole basis of reality was a lie. A figment of his imagination.

"Doctor...thank you" offered Potter, softly.

"You have no need to thank me. You will prove to be a fascinating case. What did you think you were?"

"Well," began Potter, "I was a boy wizard, taught at Hogwart's School...a place for those talented in magic. I was friends with Ron and Hermione and we laughed and we fought evil and you were there as a Professor, but you were white, and you fought with Snape and we were warned of the evil Voldemort..."

Dr. Umbledor roared with laughter. "The evil Voldemort?! That's priceless, Harold!"

The young man looked quizzically at the older gent.

"Voldemort," explained Umbledor, "was the name of my ex-wife's divorce attorney! He tried to take everything I ever owned! You got that evil part spot-on!"

Potter excused himself from laughing, though he wasn't mad that Umbledor was still cackling like an old hen. He realized that his dream world was so much better than the real world.

"My young man," said Umbledor to Potter, with his hand placed on his shoulder "these dreams of yours would make a wonderful story. 'Harry Potter the Prisoner of Azkaban!' has a ring to it..."


Sunday, July 15, 2007

A new device and Decemberists in July

Picked up a new laptop to replace the long-dead but not-forgotten Device Mk. I, the Toshiba Satellite laptop that died back in `06. Best Buy had a pretty good sale on HP laptops, so I purchased one with 2 gigs of RAM, AMD Turion X2, integrated webcam, LightScribe SVS/CD burner and...Windows Vista.

So far...other than being slightly annoying, Vista has worked fairly well so far. The "cancel or allow" thing is pissy, but at the end of the day, it's still Windows. Take it or leave it.

Went to the Decemberists' show last night with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at Merriweather Post Pavillion. They were all fine and dandy...and boy was I neither over or underwhelmed. I think I was simply whelmed.

They're not a bad band, but boy are they a lot to swallow more than a random mp3. Their lyrics range from preposterous to pompous. They remind me a bit of Crash Test Dummies - the words *SEEMED* important and meaningful until you gave the lyrics and actual read and/or listen. Then, it hit ya like a sledgehammer to the forehead "Hey, this is crap!"

Still, they put on a nice show, and seem like charming folk. The music just ain't my bag, baby. That's what I get for buying a ticket to a show of a band I barely know.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

One of those nights...

1) Rumors in NW DC needs help. The A-Hole to Normal Evolved Human Ratio is SO out of whack there. The place has always been cheesy, but cheesy AND full of pricks...can't handle that.

2) Why do women insist on flirting with the friends of the guy they just broke up with? Honey, I heard the stories. I know why you're done as a couple, mostly because you're probably a dirty, dirty girl who cheated on my boy. So why do you think I'd give you the time of day?

3) MeetinDC - can the obsession with my ass PLEASE stop? I'm done with it. I'm about ready to drop the group completely. Knock it the hell off. Seriously. Next person who grabs my ass is going to get their ears boxed, or a kick in the shin. I'm sick of my ass being grabbed more than antacid at a Mexican food festival. If I wave it at you, then you may proceed. Otherwise....NO!! Bad MiDC person! Bad!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

oh my DAMN!!! Transformers frickin' rocks!

Finally, a movie Michael Bay didn't screw up!

Shia LaBeouf rocks! Megan Fox lives up to her name! John Turturro is hilarious! Optimus mother-f*ckin' Prime!

Perfect summer movie! The Five Paragraph Bitter Film Critic is harder than a virgin at a gang bang!

I'm writing in exclamation points!

You will love this movie...unless you're a tool. You're not a tool, are you?

Transformers gets 8 Whammies! for the eight different Transformer toys I had as a kid. It could have had nine if I hadn't have lost Starscream in the move to Glenarm Road.
My only complaint...