Saturday, March 19, 2011

Life! Death! Prizes!

Today, I was given a fortune cookie.
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For those of you who cannot read my artsy macro photography, the fortune says "There is a prospect of a thrilling time ahead for you", and lists some "lucky numbers" for me (which, by the way, they did not list my two actual lucky numbers. Twenty billion brownie points if you can guess them).

"Today?" I thought to myself. "Pffffttttt. It's just going to be a typical Saturday for me, thanks. I've got an essay to write, dammit. I have things to do! A purpose!"

I shall now break down my "typical Saturday" for you, dear reader.
Why?
Simply because I CAN.
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Reginald Kitty is not amused.


Life!
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The top rack of our dish washer gave way this afternoon.
Casualties included two Beatles mugs...
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Only slightly injured...

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Smashed to bits...

At least this mug survived...
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Phew! Simply irreplaceable!

One glass, one bowl, and two scratched up lasses at Fusspot Farm.
Oh, not to mention that the rack is buggered up, and now needs fixing.

We also had to give my mother's dog a bath.
Let's just say, she's a little tea stained.
Let me rephrase that. She got a full cup of hot tea spilled on her.
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Neither of these dogs is Stella. This is merely here to illustrate my point.

Death!
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I almost died while watching Graham Norton this afternoon.
If you want to fast forward to the 5:52 time stamp, that's what we'll be referencing.

Well, as soon as he pointed out the "Life! Death! Prizes!" line, I happened to get the french fry I was happily munching on stuck down the wrong tube.
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Let me tell you, dear reader, I have never choked quite that way before.
Normal people would have panicked.
I am told I choked like a lady.
I wouldn't know, 'cause I kinda sorta don't remember much about it.
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Prizes!
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If you chose door number one...
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Paul on Red Nose Day last night!

Did you find the photo of Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt in the background?

Go on, watch it twice. It'll be our little secret.

If you picked door number two...
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One Night Only's brand spanky new video!
It's so new, it's only been viewed 302 times!
Go on, make it 303... give 'em a palindrome!


Or, if you decided on door number three...
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Camera Obscura?
I don't know much about them, either. I just read about them on Anglotopia's 25 British Artists You Should Be Listening To list.
Hey, if you love that, check out the second list!
Just remember to keep calm...

I've been humming this all day, so I figured I'd share.

Catchy, even if it is a girl singing.

Didn't get the prize you were hoping for?
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I caught my mother singing a Plain White T's song today.
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Future Tom Higgenson fan?

Well, perhaps not pre-2008.

So, that was my typical Saturday.
Well, except for this heavenly little croissant with boysenberry preserves.
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I haven't had a croissant this good since I was in Canada. That's pretty damn good.

I think the only thing really "typical" - well, typical for me, anyway - was finding this review of the new Panic At The Disco album. Harsh words from Spin, man (but I agree, actually).

Overall, I'd say today was as fun as a chicken in shoes.
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See the fun you can have when you aren't writing essays?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Basket Was Over Here, Dipwad.

You may have noticed a lack of St. Patrick's Day love on this here slice of the Interwebbing, and there's a bloody good reason for that.
I wasn't home.
I didn't plan a blog ahead of time.
I thought I would have Internet access at our hotel.
I should have known better (how do I always manage to do that?).
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Reginald Kitty is not amused.

So, where the hell was I?
Wichita, Kansas.
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Well, technically, this isn't Wichita, but I did take this somewhere in Kansas.

So, how did I end up in Wichita?
Let me explain.

Way back in the mists of time - when cell phones were eighteen inches long, and weighed three pounds - my mother and sister got tickets to see John Edward.
No, not that one.
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This one.
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I was told I was too young to go.
This happened three times.
I've missed him in Vegas several times since then, since our vacation schedules, apparently, do not mesh.
Long story short, bim-bam-boom, that's why we went to Wichita.

I shan't wax poetic about how impressed I was (I've followed this guy for many, many years now) - 'cause, you know, I was really impressed, regardless that I've seen him do his thang on television hundreds of times - but I shall talk about the theater the event was held in.
Opening in September of 1922, it's what one might call a bit run down.
Case and point: the ruddy thing didn't have air conditioning.
Did I mention it was over eighty degrees in Wichita yesterday?
I kinda sorta start to get a bit loopy if it's over eighty degrees.
Not in that Manny from Black Books kind of way...

I kinda sorta get really, really bad heat stroke.
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Surprisingly, I can function pretty well in this condition; I've climbed a lighthouse with heat stroke, for heaven's sake!

At any rate, way up in the balcony, in a really, really, really old theater (read, claustrophobic, no leg room, i.e., we were practically sitting on top of each other), which did not have air conditioning, I was going to be down for the count very soon.
Fortunately, there was a little man passing out fans (which were selling like hotcakes!), and, after being passed by several times, we finally managed to get a couple of these coveted bastards...
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...and spent the next two hours fanning myself with both of them.
The saddest part?
I still had to hold onto my mother's arm for support when descending the stairs back down to ground level.
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This almost happened. Twice.

So, three things I have confirmed from this story:

I am SO not looking forward to summer.
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I am a wimp.
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I am moving to Oregon as soon as I ruddy well get the chance.
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Oh, and here's a thought: you know the times are changing when you type in John Edward, and get Jedward.
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You know your act crosses the line into child labor when they perform with Scooby.

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This made me laugh. Really, really hard.

So did this...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Dear Chris Harrison...

As I was planning this post in my head, it immediately came to me in the form of a letter; I liked the idea, so I ran with it. This is how it turned out.

Dear Chris Harrison (may I call you Chris Harrison? Everyone else does; but, you may notice, they never just call you Chris. Always Chris Harrison. Like Charlie Brown),
Another Bachelor Monday has wrapped itself up; not just any Bachelor Monday, either, but the FINAL ROSE Bachelor Monday. We all know that also means that the new Bachelorette will be announced.
After watching the announcement, I was instantly compelled to write this, so I rushed over to my computer as soon as Jimmy Kimmel cut to commercial break; now, when I say "as soon as", I mean, they're still on commercial break. They, quite literally,
just announced this.
That's why I'm here, Chris Harrison.
I am here to ask what everyone else in the Bachelor Universe is going to be asking around that Tuesday Morning cup of coffee: what in ruddy hell is
wrong with you, Chris Harrison?
I don't know if you've read some of the fan reactions to Ashley The Dentist; I mean, I would assume you have, since you're Executive Producer/Host Extraordinaire/Behind The Scenes Blogger. In case you haven't, I'll just briefly summarize the general reactions, according to what I have read online, coupled with my own opinion: we don't like her, Chris Harrison. Not twelve weeks worth of "please, shut up, girl", "oh, such a fun-fun-fun Bachelorette!", or any other stupid phrases we may come up with in the course of this upcoming eighth season.
I must be honest, Chris Harrison (and I realize that my opinion means little, since we all know this franchise has its hooks in deep with its audience), I'm feeling a little screwed over.
The launch of Bachelor Pad last summer (and, let's be honest, the upcoming second season) was excusable; it rather brought the caliber of the whole Bachelor franchise down a notch, but trashy reality television is always a sell.
The announcement of Brad Womack as the Bachelor was a real blow. I went into the season half-heartedly, and - I, a massive Bachelor fan from the very beginning, will openly admit this - I was not riveted. "Womack: Part Two", though not a repeat of his previous season, was no more interesting than his first (which, I will point out, was not one of my favorites), and, perhaps you will agree, the ratings showed it. Nearly two million less people tuned in to this season than the previous seasons.
Still, it was a new concept for the show, so it can be excused.
This one, however, I'm having a harder time dealing with.
I have disliked Ashley from the very moment that she introduced herself as the peppy dentist in her intro; from what I gather, the rest of the audience is with me.
Will it keep those of us who are quite unhappy with this latest Bachelorette announcement from watching? Of course not!
It just prompts the question of "what the hell are you thinking, dude?"
Oh, and, uh, just one more thing: what the hell have you done to your hair, man?
I mean, maybe it's just because we BARELY saw you on this season of The Bachelor, but I noticed the change during the Women Tell All special last week.
From many, many years of watching (yes, way back in the Designer's Challenge days), I can honestly say you don't need it. Just let it go, man.

At any rate, good luck, sir; I think you'll have your work cut out for you with this season, but, as always, we'll all be watching.

All the best,
Me

P.S. Please, for the love of GOD, make Ed the next Bachelor. That's all I ask. If you do, I won't ever complain about your franchise ever again. Ever. Come on, at least consider it.
RATINGS, Chris Harrison, RATINGS.








I mean, really. If the Bachelor hasn't already screwed us over enough over the last year, we now are dealing with this...

This is the intro I was talking about in the "letter". Rarely will I instantly dislike somebody... another time was with this guy, but that's another story entirely.
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Needless to say, Bachelor Monday ended on a very, very down note at Fusspot Farm.
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Second of all, seriously, what the monkey hell did Chris Harrison do to his hair?
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Before

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As the kids say now, WTF?

You be the judge.
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Reginald Kitty is not amused.

And, last, but certainly not least, please, make Ed the next Bachelor.
This video alone is not enough.



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No, dear, this is a nerdgasm...
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Before I make any further an ass of myself, let's have a song!


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I can never resist making an ass of myself. Two years of blogging, and I'll bet you never pieced that one together.

Oh, and as an aside... Blogger spell check does not recognize "nerdgasm" as a word?
Really, Google?
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Thursday, March 3, 2011

A Taste Of Spring, And My Life

It's time for another hearty helping of blog casserole!
You know, where you sling a bunch of stuff into a pot, and it's pretty good, but it sometimes doesn't all go together. Hell, you may even want to let this set in the fridge overnight for the flavors to meld together.

First on the agenda today, we're talking about the psycho weather we've had in these here parts.
I'd like to point out that it's currently 76 degrees outside. I know, I just checked, 'cause I'm from the Internet Generation, and I can do that pretty easily.
For someone that's quite comfortable when it's in the low-40s outside, this is really, really, "for the sake of all that's good and cheezy, it's MARCH" hot. I've taken special measures, though.
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An empty house is ALWAYS a pants-optional zone.

That being said, Spring looks like it's starting to, well, spring. It's not quite sprung, but it's getting there.
Would you like to see some photographs?
Of course you would!
Well, that's what you said in my head as I imagined you reading that question, anyway.
Don't say no, it'll make the monkey sad.
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Do you want to make this little baby sad? I didn't think so.



Now, wasn't that fun?
Just pretend.
Think of the monkey.
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Reginald Kitty is not amused.

Are we ready to move onto the second article for discussion?
YAY!
Is it just me, or do photographs such as this one of the Queen...
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...make things like this all the more funny?
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This may or may not be on my desk.
That may or may not be Roger the Bose.
It may or may not be playing Donovan's Troubadour Collection.
Maybe.
It is.



Now, for item three; American television.
I got this email from my sister yesterday afternoon:

From : Seester
To : Archibald Heatherington Nastyface
Subject : Recommendation

I have started watching a show called My Life As Liz and highly recommend it...
Probably not your style, but it is cute and if you allow yourself, you might enjoy it... Even if it isn't British...
Love ya!


It's not often my sister recommends something to me.
Let's be honest, with twelve years age difference, we're not likely to have the same interests.
Over the span of about five years, she has made the following suggestions:
Mumford And Sons...
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I suggested this back at her, and sent her the title track to their latest album almost four months before
it came out (the good people of YouTube are to thank)...
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Why, if it isn't Writing Playlist favorites, the Plain White T's!
Come in, sit a spell, we'll have something meat-free and talk about the Beatles remasters.


I never did hear what she thought about it. It's an open suggestion, fully extended to you, dear reader.
That is, if you can find it on YouTube now. 'Cause I couldn't find it.
Admittedly, I didn't try very hard, 'cause I've got the album.

The Guild...


I'd like to remember what I suggested back to her, since I always try to point out whatever's going on in my
entertainment sphere, but my memory has failed me, and I cannot find any text records to fill in the gap.
(Yes, I keep records of that kind of thing. Apparently, not as well as I thought I did.)

The Big Bang Theory..
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Please, view the link. Really.
Do it.
A two minute clip showed me more than the first five episodes did.
You will laugh.

I believe I suggested Black Books to her at the time, but I never heard if she liked it or not.
I'm sensing a pattern.

Case and point, she must like it if she brings it to my attention.
It has been said that I didn't give The Guild much of a chance, so, to keep that from happening with
My Life As Liz, I watched the entire first season.
In one sitting.
Because I am a nocturnal creature with maddening insomnia.
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Much like the rest of me, my body clock has rejected reality.

If you've not seen it, I must say, the format is a bit strange. It is defined by Wikipedia as
"scripted 'reality' comedy",
which makes no sense to me.
Take it from somebody who has been watching reality television for eons: the whole genre is pretty much
scripted.
They've got a plot to follow, they are encouraged to create unnecessary drama,
and personalities are exaggerated to fit into cookie-cutter stereotypes.
I went in not knowing much about the show; I figured it would be better to
let it speak for itself, rather than have any preconceived notions about it.
One must be open minded about such things, after all.
That being said, I've got to confess, I just don't get it.
Here are some things I do understand about the show:
The general premise revolves around a girl fighting her high school infatuation.
OK. I get that.
Believe you me, if you escape those high school years without having experienced some of the things
illustrated in the first season, I'd like to shake your hand and have a nice long
discussion about how your solitary isolation went.
That process is all part of that whole adolescent, crazy, "lyke, ohmagawd, I so totally kept that straw that we
shared a milkshake from, 'cause, lyke, it's just so squeeeeee!" thing.
(That was actually in one of the episodes; not the characterization, but the plot device. I, naturally, covered
my eyes and mentally screamed 'THAT'S HOW YOU GET SICK!'
I particularly loved how she gathered all of her relics
and disposed of them. I never did that... I just drank copious amounts of tea,
and wrote several short stories in that Jane Austen style of changing names, but having the same plot.)
Rights of passage, and all that bollocks.
I also understand the social awkwardness. Again, rights of passage.
Except, of course, that instead of lying to me via phone, people used to actually hide from me,
exclude me from their plans, and, in the end, stopped answering my emails all together.
Oh, and, naturally, the urge to be yourself. Self-empowerment and all that.
I dig it, man, I'm there.

Everything else?


Clueless.

It dawned on me this morning why.
Homeschooling had its advantages.
Sure, my life has been far from conventional, but didn't I get pretty much the same experience without the
hassle?
To identify with the main points of the plot without having had to waste thirteen years of my life in an
academic institution?
That, my friends, is a major SCORE.
Not only that, but I got a better education by teaching myself: emotional, personal, spiritual, AND academic.
I realize that this is a major dramatization of typical high school
(I would assume it's on the opposite end of the High School Musical spectrum), though I have no way to say
how accurate a portrayal it is or isn't.
All I can say is that I pity those who have to do it the "normal" way.
I just hope they can break out of that web of negativity in a timely manner, and join the world of the
free-spirited, like yours truly.
So, whereas this isn't quite my "thing"...

He really reminds me of someone I used to know. I think it's the haircut.

...I'll just have to stick with something a little more realistic to me...

One of the greatest movies ever made. Period.

So, with my thoughts on this latest suggestion, I'm making one of my own.
If you can, get your butt over to the Showtime website and watch Episodes.
It's one of the funniest new shows out there right now, and it's fresh from the Sceptered Isle...

You will see this clip again in the future.

And, fourthly, I have finally turned a corner into feeling incredibly older than I really am.
My eyesight has gotten so terrible, that I'm having to use my glasses to read with, and, on occasion,
to use the computer.
There, I said it.
I had hoped to at least hold it off until I hit twenty.
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As a friend said to me when I first got them, "Hey, I was looking everywhere for you!... but, I don't know
how I missed you in those glasses."
Not the most gifted with words, was he. Perhaps that was reflected in his lyrics.
(Yeah, I used to know a musician. What did I do with my life before I blogged?)


Now that I've bored you totally, have a song.

And somewhere in the north of Michigan, there is a bridge...

Is It A Subscription Box, Or Something More Sinister? (It's A Subscription Box. Maybe.)