Saturday, February 28, 2009

Charlie Did It

As an avowed animal lover, in the following mad screed by uber-conservative Christian commentator Sean McDowell (tap hip: DFTCW) I can easily agree with one detail in his argument: that no one should keep exotic animals (of any kind) as pets vis-à-vis the recent attack on a woman by a pet chimpanzee in Connecticut.

However, as opposed to chalking up the idea some have to keep exotics to, well, human stupidity, instead young Mr. McDowell blames another insidious party for such incidents.

Wait for it.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Black & White

To be perfectly honest, I’m not among those who believe that last week’s New York Post cartoon depicting two cops having shot a raging chimp (a joined nod to the Stimulus Package, and the attack on a Connecticut woman by her friend’s exotic pet) who believe it was a racist hit on Barack Obama.

For one thing, for any major newspaper to intentionally pull such a stunt risks alienating throngs of black readers (subscribers or otherwise) at a time when the state of printed news is mighty bleak, and every single dollar in the annual ledger counts.

Nevertheless, all this aside, check out the following gob-smacking incident from Pandagon that makes any accusations of racism (real or not) via the Post noise look tame by comparison, not to mention raises questions about whether the originator of the emailed “joke” in question won’t soon be lobbying for an area repeal of anti-lynching laws - y'know, as a nod to the good 'ol days.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Very Brief Review: "Slumdog Millionaire"

In a boy-meets-girl story that is brilliantly shot and masterfully edited, "Slumdog Millionaire" is Bollywood meets Dickensian tragedy with a mega-happy ending tacked onto the end.

That said, I expect it to win Best Picture at this evening's Oscars, and deservedly so.

PS (2-23-09): Last night's Oscar ceremony pretty much came down as expected concerning who got which awards, with "Slumdog" scoring a total of eight. Hugh Jackman also made for a charming, versatile host on a pleasant evening which clipped by as quickly as could be expected.

I suppose my only moments of befuddlement came during the acting award presentations when five of the nominees' peers came out as a group to individually lavish praise (often to absurd levels, as if doling out sainthood or the Nobel prize for a revolutionary cancer cure) on their performances.

76 and Counting

Coming off a past 30 days that was sadistically packed with road games, the Chicago Blackhawks are continuing their slow, but steady evolution begun less than two years ago from league doormat to true post-season contender.

I plan to continue sitting back, and enjoying the fun - especially when the regular season ends in April, and the "real games" begin.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sanity Takes a Holiday

Here’s yet another head-smacking example of conservatives (this one by the ever-rational Michelle Malkin, she of the constant battle against fascist neckwear) desperately trying to re-clothe themselves as stand-up-straight, no-elbows-on-the-table fiscal conservatives.

The only problem, however, is that people like Malkin who are shouting “socialism” over the Stimulus package truly have no idea what socialism is.

But here’s a hint, Miss Maglalang: do your fucking research (remember that?) before self-righteously plopping in front of your keyboard to tap your latest ideological screed because as is, your “journalism” is for shit.

A Very Brief Review: "Doubt"

Despite fine lead performances by Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman as combatants in a possible case of sexual abuse at a Bronx, NY, Catholic school circa 1964, "Doubt" is a drama which is understated to a fault - this, despite keen dialogue by writer-director John Patrick Shanley (who adapted his own play to the screen).

But truly, there was something about "Doubt" that left me wanting more because as is the story feels like a ghost - like something so faint and dreamlike that it makes one question what (if anything) had happened.

But as far as I could tell, "Doubt" is fundamentally a tale of a philosophical pissing contest. And what the hell is so profound about that?

Clown Car

Following the inauguration of Barack Obama last month, listening to right-wing media spewing a fountain of white noise in response has become downright comical.

Take the Drug-Addled Gasbag (AKA: Rush Limbaugh) for example.

Despite my longtime distaste for the man--and anyone who makes a living on disinformation--more often than not, I could respect Limbaugh's ability to phrase his positions in a clever way. However, during the first Obama Administration's early days, Limbaugh's has been spinning so madly (against the Stimulus, et al) that picking out his lies isn't even a challenge anymore. Like a poor medieval farmer, wagons loaded with horse dung are all that Limbaugh has to offer, not that his advertisers or shallow legions of "dittoheads" are likely to notice.

Yet true to form, Limbaugh's right-wing media wannabes in Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, Sean Hannity, Charles "Vegas Train" Krauthammer, and the laughable Dick Morris are right there beside him, forecasting doom around Obama like two-bit druids while offering nothing in the way of practical alternatives.

I don't know exactly what is in the GOP's future, but if its morons like the above who are leading the way (plus Michael Steele, and his bold plan to energize the Party of Lincoln thru hip-hop and "one-armed midgets") it's beginning to look a lot like a boardwalk freakshow.

If I were them, I'd start praying six months ago.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Moore's Lament

Just as "Watchmen" is now just two weeks away from release, it just occurred to me that it's R-rating makes it the first-ever superhero flick ever to earn such a rating.

Or am I wrong here? (Yes, "V for Vendetta" was rated "R" as well, but I really don't consider that a superhero movie).

Either way, count on Alan Moore to hate "Watchmen" (be it good or not), which once again poses the eternal question of why he keeps selling the film rights to his projects if he despises how Hollywood treats them.

Oy, Bigfoot. Quit your bitchin' and cash your bloody check.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Vive Le France

Tomorrow, the head man for the company I am sub-contracting for will be delivering a Town Hall-style employee meeting at an office on the east coast - although all continental employees are invited to listen by teleconference.

This meeting makes me a tad nervous because of two things: the timing (45 days into a new quarter), and the extent which this company is advertising it - which makes me wonder if us groundlings won't soon be hearing a steady drum roll and the thud of a heavy blade (e.g. job cuts) tomorrow.

I suppose if there's any good news for me, it's that I work in a very small office and thus make for a small target. Still, one never knows how the day will turn out, but judging from the dour tone of the Town Hall invite, I can't see it being upbeat - even if no jobs are lost in the next 24 hours.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Mugged Again

After several weekends of fruitless searching, today I finally bagged the Mighty Mugg of Darth Maul v 2.0--greased up and obviously ready for a sexy round of beach volleyball--at a local Wal-Mart.

I must admit, these little guys are addictive – although among reports of new MM waves (for Star Wars and Marvel) due in early 2009, few interest me very much.

In other news, due to an apparent lack of public demand, Hasbro has reportedly cancelled future editions of their Indiana Jones line of MM’s, which I found disappointing after seeing the following concepts for a young River Phoenix version of Indy, and his shifty, arachnophobic guide, Sabito, from the opening scene of “Raiders.”