Archive | July, 2008

Just Kidding

31 Jul

This morning on the way into work, I got a nice surprise: When we pulled into Packard’s Corner, the conductor came on the PA to tell us we were going express to BU Central. I say this was a surprise because the train was barely half-full, and usually we only go express if the car is full. Well anyway, so a couple people do the requisite freaking out and scurry off the train. As we pulled into the next stop a few feet up, at Babcock Street, the conductor again came on the speaker to announce, “Change. This car will actually be making all local stops.” I sighed, but then had to laugh because of the folks who had gotten off just a stop earlier for no reason. It was a classic case of schadenfreude.

Not that I think this was an intentional practical joke or anything, but it sure seemed that way. Maybe some T drivers do have a sense of humor.

Let the Eagle’s Soar

31 Jul

One thing about having a blog — a public outlet for writing whatever I want to — is that you never know who’s going to be reading what I write.

A couple weeks ago, I wrote about my bad experiences at the food places in Cleveland Circle. Well, and both picked it up, and soon all kinds of people were telling me how wrong I was. How could I judge pizza places without actually having the pizza, one person asked. Why didn’t I just go to this place or that place, other people asked.

And thankfully, some other people did agree with me. Continue reading

Put a Fork in ‘Em

30 Jul

I really hate to say it, but after Wednesday night’s loss, it may be time to call the 2008 Red Sox season over. I know we’re not out of contention yet (far from it), but if this week’s games are any indication, the spark’s just not there and we’re sinking fast. But I’d be happy to be wrong. Maybe all this Manny hoo-hah is just a major distraction and all will be fine after the trade deadline has passed. Or maybe it won’t, and we’ll continue this downward slide. I’m not jumping ship just yet (after all, it’s only July 31), but I’m starting to set my expectations really low.

I Think You Should Abstain

30 Jul

If the thesis of Swing Vote is true, that one person can make a difference, then here is my question: why couldn’t that person be an editor? Kevin Costner stars as Bud, a stupid, lazy, selfish drunk who (amazingly enough) has a whip-smart, politically-savvy and awfully precocious daughter, Molly. Bud couldn’t care less about the presidential election (between, amazingly enough, Kelsey Grammer and Dennis Hopper), but through circumstances not even worth getting into here, he holds the final result of the election in his hands. Great. If only the guy was remotely likable and/or smart enough to realize what morons he was making the candidates into when they descend on his town and try to win him over. If only his daughter wasn’t so angelic that she’s beyond cliche. If only the screenplay didn’t sound like it was written by a complete amateur. If only the aforementioned editor had decided to take a half hour off the running time of this movie — at least. If only I cared enough to list all the things wrong with this movie, and if only you cared enough to read about them. Frankly, my guess is you don’t even care enough to see this movie, so I’m just going to give it a D and call it a day.

9021-Oh No They Didn’t

29 Jul

Alright, I’m just as excited as the next person for the new 90210 (alright, fine. Maybe I’m a little more excited than the next person.) And sure, I still watch the reruns of the original Beverly Hills, 90210 every weekend. But I can safely say that I will not be buying one of these limited edition 90210 iPod Nanos. No kidding. These are for real, folks. For $269, you too can have an 8GB iPod Nano with the vintage images of Brandon, Kelly, Dylan, and Brenda engraved on the back. (A 4GB version is also available.) The iPod is available in multiple colors, including, ahem, silver. Now, if you could actually buy episodes of 90210 on iTunes, maybe then I’d at least consider this. But until then, I’ll take comfort in the fact that yes, I do still enjoy this show, but I’m not that dorky a fan that I’d actually go out and buy this thing.

More Growing Up Needed

29 Jul

The makers of the new documentary American Teen would have you believe that their movie is a modern-day Breakfast Club, what with its rip-off poster and references to the classic John Hughes film in its trailer. And sure enough, both films focus on the classic archetypes we know so well: the jock, the brain, the outcast, the princess, etc. But that’s where the two films differ: one was an original look at teenage angst and the other is a snapshot of teens that screams “been there/done that.”

In director Nanette Burstein’s film, we meet five high school seniors in Warsaw, Indiana: Hannah, the misfit; Colin, the jock; Jake, the nerd; Megan, the bitch; and Mitch, the charmer. Their stories and personalities are ones we know all too well, having gone through high school and having watched countless reality shows over the years. The kids don’t know life outside Warsaw, so their dramas are all amplified to an expected degree. We see the frustration Megan feels when her choice of prom theme is overruled and the heartbreak of Jake’s repeated attempts to find love. There’s Colin’s struggle to lead his basketball team and earn a scholarship, and Mitch’s pursuit of a girlfriend who may put his social standing at risk. And that’s why you sort of have to laugh when Hannah’s boyfriend dumps her shortly after she rhapsodizes about how she is in a relationship that will actually last beyond high school. The stories are just too predictable.

To Burstein’s credit, though, while the students do all fall into their expected storylines, she manages to make you care about some of them. Hannah, in particular, stands out for her determined attempts to leave Warsaw and start a new life. Jake, too, is an endearing personality. But Megan and Colin don’t seem to add much new to their respective “types,” and all the usual cliches apply (if you don’t count Colin’s Elvis-impersonating father, that is). So in the end, American Teen is about as generic as its title implies. It’s a pleasant two hours, but it’s by no means a must-see. I’m giving it a B&ndash.

No Flipping

29 Jul

I think this clip speaks for itself.

Crazy Uncle Martin

28 Jul

So I guess it’s official now: I have turned into that person who everyone hates, the one who can’t stop taking pictures of his adorable niece and then sharing them with anyone who’ll look. But really, just look at that picture I’ve posted above. Can you blame me? This kid is beyond cute.

I was in New York this weekend to hang out with Abby and the rest of the family. Now that she’s 12 weeks old, Abby is showing signs of a personality, not just sleeping and eating, like she was doing the last time I visited. So of course, my camera was working overtime — much to Abby’s parents’ chagrin. One day, my niece will forgive me for being such a shutterbug. And Mitzi and Jason will be thankful to have so many great shots of their daughter. Until then, I’ll keep looking at these pictures, showing them off to my friends and all you readers, and I’ll be thinking of when my next chance to see Abby will be. Hopefully it won’t be too long from now.

Click here to see my photo album from this weekend.

No, Thank You?

27 Jul

I got my latest issue of Esquire in the mail yesterday, and it came with one of those wraps around it. Since it was about three weeks after the time when I usually get my issue, I figured this was a notice telling me to pay up or else my subscription will end. Nope. “Dear Valued Reader, I appreciate you being a reader of Esquire,” the letter began. It continued, telling me that I will get guaranteed savings and unlimited delivery — and oh, I don’t have to do anything right now to ensure that. This notice was just for my records.

Alright, fine. Thanks, Esquire. But if I’m such a valued reader, why couldn’t you have sent me my issue on time and sent this non-urgent notice separately? The biggest value of being a subscriber — other than the convenience of having the issue delivered to my mailbox, and the lower price I pay for all the issues — is having the issue delivered, if not before, then at the same time the issue hits the newsstand. Esquire, please don’t be like Rolling Stone, which usually comes about a week after the issue hits newsstands (and that magazine is bi-weekly!). Just get me my issue on time and I’ll continue to be a happy subscriber. Thanks.

He Is a Jelly Donut

24 Jul

Ladies and gentlemen of the world, we present to you … the next president of the United States.

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