Tuesday, June 30, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Fourteen: Red Ring of Doom

Imagine an octogenarian buying an XBox 360 for his/her grandkids to play the once-a-year they come to visit. That's about how often I use my console. Less than one-half of one percent of my memory brick has been used. And yet today, after twelve months of bullshit, I decided to sit and play a little FIFA only to encounter the quote-unquote Red Ring of Doom, which basically means "General Hardware Failure," which basically means, since I think my warranty has expired, I'm fucked. This thing is a piece of motherfuckingshit. Thanks, Microsoft.





Rating: 0%

PS - I had a dream about R3 last night.

Monday, June 29, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Thirteen: This Sweater from J. Crew

You want $225? Hmmm. Maybe I'll walk over to GAP and buy it for...oh, wait. You own them, too?









Rating: Even WASPs get the blues%

That Noise

There it is again! Don't you hear it? It's kind of like a... you know, a thump, and then a growl, but not like an animal growl, like a machine growl, get it? Why can't they just shut up! Do you think it's a murder? Like a murderer is upstairs right now killing the neighbors? Maybe we'll get on television. Oh God, what if the murderer comes here next? Should I get the baseball bat? Do we even have a baseball bat? Now there's words! I definitely heard a word, an English word. Ugh, maybe they're having sex. On a Sunday afternoon? When it's not even raining? That's real polite. There could be kids outside. Jesus, they're definitely having sex. That's awful. Just disgusting. Wait, no, was that a glass clinking? Maybe it's their dishwasher clogging up, you don't hear it?

RATING: 38%

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Stonewall Riot


June 28, 1969:

Judy Garland dies. NYC police harass gay bar patrons one too many times. Drag queens lead gay riot that f**ks up Greenwich Village for several days.

Viva la revolution.

Rating: depends who you ask %

Image courtesy of The Boulevardier

MIchael Jackson's rumored final wishes






Who knew the reign of the King of Weirdness would end so soon? But who could believe it would really end with his death? The rumors are beginning to gain momentum that, in true MJ fashion, his posthumous arrangements are... to be laminated.
YES!!! God bless America!

To read more about the postmortem plastination process of Dr. Gunther von Hagens, click here.

Rating: But how much of that was already accomplished?% (157%)

Photo courtesy of Bodyworlds.com

A Month of Boring Things - Day Twelve: Your Cousin Anthony, Now That He's Completed Rehab

What a drag. Can't even mention Crank without feeling guilty? Well, at least you can still chain-smoke and talk about Jesus.






Rating: 47%

A Month of Boring Things - Day Eleven: The Whitewater Scandal

This makes as much sense to me now as it did when I was nine. Also, doesn't this picture of the Clintons remind you of Home Improvement? Not, like, the characters or actors or anything. But, like, the time period. Does that make sense? I mean, do you get what I'm saying? Hey, remember Crystal Pepsi?




Rating: 26%

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Amazing Spider-man: Coming Home

This volume marks the beginning of J. Michael Straczynski's run on ASM, and unlike Hulk two posts down, this actually does hold up over time. JMS manages to add gravity and mystery to Spider-man's origin by introducing an old dude, Ezekiel, who has the same powers as Spider-man and knows his identity. Meanwhile, some crazy vampire guy wants to eat Spider-man, John Romita Jr.'s art is flawless, and Aunt May learns Peter Parker is Spider-man. Yeah, this was pretty much all retconned out by a magic spell last year, but it's still funnybook storytelling at its best.

RATING: 82%

The Elephant Man

"I am not a two hour long video of paint drying! I am an actual movie!"

(I guess)

RATING: 21%

The Incredible Hulk: Return Of The Monster

Bruce Jones' run on Incredible Hulk became legendary: eventually it was one of the most hated, consistently worst comics coming out, and he almost single handedly destroyed the franchise forever. But part of the reason people grew to hate it so much is that supposedly when it started it was a really well written comic, and received almost universal praise. Well, hate to break it to you, but whoever initially praised this piece of garbage was totally wrong, and I guess that includes me since I bought it for thirty fucking issues. The story is frustratingly facile, we barely ever even see the Hulk, and way too many people get shot in the head and then "surprisingly" come back to life. Oh well, only six more volumes to read.

RATING: 25% (all for the art)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Nine: The Articles of Confederation

Not in my house you don't!












Rating: I'mrunningoutofsteam%


Also, Michael Jackson just died.

Cassette Tape Memories: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Probably my least favorite kind of music is the kind of music found on this soundtrack - late 80s/early 90s R&B/new jack swing garbage. But still I have a soft spot for all the ridiculous songs on this album, probably because I remember walking around my backyard with a Fischer Price tape player blasting it like crazy when I was 9. At the time I mainly listened to soundtracks, classical music, and jazz, so pop music wasn't really in my vocabulary until a year or two after I owned this album when a friend picked up a Louis Armstrong tape I had in disgust and told me "Glenn, cool people don't listen to Louis Armstrong. Cool people listen to C&C Music Factory." Well, he was half right I guess, but for now just check out some TURTLE Power if you've got a few minutes and I think you do.

RATING: 51%

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Eight: 100+ Degrees

Two years ago it rained all through June here in Dallas (and Houston, if I remember correctly) and I just thought, "Keep it coming. Dear god, keep it coming." Temps sat in the mid-80s until well after the Fourth. I guess it was a pay-for-it-later kind of deal. 100 degrees. And this shit won't end until Halloween. What a drag.






Rating: Melanoma Death%

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Seven: Miniature Golf

...is like real golf, only with screaming children and AstroTurf.











Rating: Shoottheballthroughthebird'snestandwinalifetimeofbanality%

The Eternal by Sonic Youth

56, 51, 53, and 47. You can't really blame Sonic Youth for putting out a largely forgettable album after almost 30 years of being together. I mean, at their age most bands just stop writing new music and fall back on their catalog of hits (oh, right). It's decent enough, but it doesn't do anything new. Sorry Sonic Youth, major deduction for not altering the stale formula of rock in a radical and original way for the billiontieth time in your career you old fogeys.

RATING: 65%

Comic Three-In-One

Ultimate Spider-man Vol. 9: Ultimate Six

Hey, here's a great idea for a story where the Ultimates and Spider-man team up to fight a bunch of bad guys: make it seven issues long and don't have any fighting until issue six!

RATING: 31%





Batman: No Man's Land Vol. 4

Continuing the story of Gotham being totally fucked, this one isn't too interesting apart from a classic confrontation between Jim Gordon and Batman.

RATING: 59%





Fantastic Four: Flesh & Stone

Turns out Jeph Loeb actually did jump the shark before Ultimates 3, who knew?

RATING: 45%

Monday, June 22, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Six: Tertiary Sector of the Economy

If somebody asks you what you do for a living and your response includes any of the following terms--access, solutions, systems (or systems management), data services, development, systems integration, business processes, expeditionary technology solutions, usability research, information assurance and network securities--there's a greater than zero chance the person you're speaking to has zoned out. Whereas miners have to fear a life cut short by black lung or explosions, your biggest on-the-job threat are Sonic breakfast burritos and the Awesome Blossom you have for lunch. Hey, pal. It could be worse. You could work in the Quarternary Sector, which often feels like winning first-place in a shit eating competition.


Rating: 27.45654% in interest

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Four: Marco Polo (game)

I've often wondered how many shattered senses of self-worth this game is responsible for. One (1), at least. Mine.









Rating: 3%

Antipasto Panino from Central Market

Parma Prosciutto, Mortadella, Capicolla, Salami, Mozzarella, roasted red peppers, Basil pesto and arugula. Cured pork heaven.

RATING: 75%

Star Trek: Voyager - Season 1 Disc 2

"Phage" - Crazy space alien types steal Neelix's lungs. Hm.

RATING: 17%

"The Cloud" - Voyager encounters a giant single celled organism in space. Hm.

RATING: 25%

"Eye Of The Needle" - Voyager finds a wormhole back to the Alpha Quadrant except RATS it's only a few centimeters wide and DOUBLE RATS the only person they can contact through it is a Romulan and TRIPLE RATS it ends up he's been dead for twenty years.

RATING: 53%

"Ex Post Facto" - Some boring episode about Tom Paris murdering somebody, who knows, this show does suck.

RATING: 38%

An Open Letter to the Banjo Guy

Listen, Banjo Guy, we both know you didn't bring that banjo to the bar to regale us with banjo songs, because you haven't played it once all night. I'd also bet a prize pig and three jugs of moonshine that you're not going to a banjo band practice later on, since it's one o'clock in the morning. Now I don't particularly hate bluegrass music, but I do particularly hate other straight males under 30 who think they're cute, and the temptation to wrest that hillbilly hipster fashion accessory from your little white stick arms and use it to give you the beating and/or strangling of a lifetime is hard to resist. On the upside, you'll probably look cooler with a neck brace than you do with a fucking banjo, and the little girls will be falling all over themselves to sign your multiple casts.

RATING: HEAVY METAL%

(Image from crabapplenyc.wordpress.com.)

My Didgeridoo

My didgeridoo is pretty cool, I guess. It only plays one note (C#) so "Puff the Magic Dragon" sounds an awful lot like "Old McDonald." It's made out of eucalyptus hollowed out by termites, but it doesn't smell eucalyptusy fresh and there aren't any termites in it now. I don't call it a "didge" or show it off down to the local watering hole, but my mom bought it from a white guy so I guess I'm still an asshole.

RATING: 80%, but it'd be higher if I was better at playing it.

(Image from pastemagazine.com. This isn't a picture of my didgeridoo, which doesn't glow or float unassisted in midair.)

Friday, June 19, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Three: The Ryugyong Hotel

So in the eighties the North Koreans* got their collective panties in a wad over some hotel the South Koreans had built. In response, they began construction on the Ryugyong Hotel. Then they ran out of money. The place has been untouched since 1992.** But they won't take the crane off the top--you know, just in case. Well, I have this to say to you, Ryugyong Hotel: Shit or get off the pot, buddy. Because there are scores of us who would like the pot, who need the pot. We, too, feel the desire to shit and, preferably, we would like to do so in the pot. And you, by neither shitting in nor getting off the pot, are making it difficult for us to do our own shitting. And that is leading to moderate-to-severe bowel pain. And that is out and out rude. And also boring.

Rating: 12%



*This dude from Canada has an interesting blog about N.K.

**Apparently the North Koreans have recently decided to add windows to the bastard. Windows! To a half-finished structure!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

† by Justice

Whereas many of our readers were totally grossed out or whatevs by the video for Justice's song "Stress" that I posted a couple days ago, I immediately bought the whole album after seeing it. It's pretty much everything I want out of an electronic album: great beats, interesting and unique manipulation of samples and instruments, and a real sort of furious energy buried beneath all the ones and zeros. Daft Punk, the other big French electronic duo, sometimes comes close, but I've never enjoyed a single album by them as much as I've enjoyed this one. So check out some more music by them unless you're scared of getting beaten up by awesome music after seeing the other video.

RATING: 85%

This Video



FUCK SHIT UP!

RATING: 81%

A Month of Boring Things - Day Two: The Vegan Diet

Oh, gad. Here we go again!









Rating: 23% (points for health, animals, liberal condescension)

Monday, June 15, 2009

Don Miguel's Queso Dinner

Sometimes you might have just gotten done exercising and find yourself super hungry, broke, and in the frozen food section, and that might be a time when you may think buying a $1 frozen "Queso Dinner" is a good idea. Friends, it is not at all a good idea. That unrecognizable slop in the picture has about all the delicious taste of a ruptured appendix au jus. My only guess as to why it's called "Queso Dinner" and not "Cheese Enchilada Dinner" is that there was some legal issue raised about actually calling this something that could be confused with a familiar food product, and referring to it in Spanish would be enough to ward off FDA lawyers. I don't necessarily believe in the concept of universal justice, but if I have done something terrible in a past life like murder a bunch of orphans or sink some Spanish ships I believe after eating this for dinner my penance has been served.

RATING: 9%

Ignorant Facebook Quizes

I know we all get sick of seeing our friends take a million quizzes and having to see that Susie took the "Which low-fat butter substitute are you?" quiz on our homepage and that her result was "Olivo," but I've been noticing that since regular people (aka "idiots") can design quizzes now and they're pretty unregulated, the results have been edging from dumb to plain wrong. Spelling and grammatical errors abound. I feel like I've read a few about different countries or whatever where the quiz-maker's ignorance shines through, but this is the brightest ray of stupid I've seen so far. That picture is a screenshot of my homepage, edited to remove my friend's name. I'm not retyping any of that, so if you can't read it, let me know and I'll repost it bigger. I know people can post whatever sort of shit they want in their notes, but there's no way to tell how racist/ridiculous a quiz is until you take it. Get a clue, Facebook, before you die a sad slow death a la Friendster.

RATING: WRONG%

The "No Call" Rejection

Some people think simply not calling a person is a perfectly acceptable way to say “not interested.” I am not one of these people. Specifically, I’m talking about a situation where you go on one or two dates with someone and then for whatever reason decide that you’re no longer interested in dating them. But instead of calling and politely saying, “hey I think you’re nice, but you’re just not right for me,” you simply don’t return their calls. Don’t get me wrong, I understand the motivation to go the no-call route—no doubt, it’s a lot easier on the party doing the rejecting. But it’s also rude as hell and completely immature. So here’s what I have to say to no-call rejectors: Any person that was willing to take time out of their schedule to go on one or more dates with you deserves the basic respect of a polite call saying you aren’t interested. Any other method just makes them feel bad and you look like an asshole.

Rating: immaturedickwad%

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Five Guys Burgers and Fries

Several locations of the much lauded Five Guys hamburger chain have recently opened in Houston, and after reading more than enough glowing reviews from burger connoisseurs nationwide I finally decided to give them a try. The "regular" burger comes with two fresh, never frozen 100% American beef patties (however, they do offer a smaller version with only one if you're a wimp, or hate life) with a wide variety of toppings and condiments. Unfortunately, I found the burger was incredibly disappointing, although the toppings were fresh and liberally applied. I'm not saying it was bad, because it was decent, but it's nothing impressive or spectacular. It's honestly too hard to justify eating at Five Guys when there are a handful of other joints in Houston that offer a way better burger. The only draw for Five Guys are their fresh-cut Idaho french fries, which are incredible. So make a trip out to Five Guys sometime and order the "large" fries, with a small burger on the side.

RATING: 60%

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Santogold by Santigold

Oops, looks like I'm behind in the times again, but here's a pretty fun album that I'm sure everybody has already played to death since it came out a year ago. It's sometimes rocky and sometimes dancey, and if there's one thing I know about our readers at R3 is that they love to dance. Yeah, I like this album a lot, but I'm not so certain how much more can be milked out of alternadance, but then again I'm no Pitchfork Media so what do I know.

RATING: 74%

The Brothers Bloom

I wanted to like The Brothers Bloom, I really did. I have a big crush on Adrien Brody (did you know he's banned from SNL?), enjoy comedy, and generally want independent movies to be great. While this "globe-trotting comedy about the last great adventure of the world's greatest con men" was better than most mainstream movies I've seen this year (but not sexy sexy Star Trek, of course), it was also extremely predictable and felt pretty ripped off from other movies. For example, a scene where Brody wins the heart of the quirky Garden State-equse female love interest by getting hit by her car was straight out of Back to the Future (full disclosure, my date is the one who noticed this). All in all, it played out like a bad Wes Anderson wanna be (not helped by the fact that it has one of the stars of The Darjeeling Limited on a travel adventure). Yeah, sorry, as cute as this was, this shit was played harder than your dad played your mom last night.

Rating: 60%

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Wonder Boys


In the film adaptation of Michael Chabon's (autobiographical?) novel, Michael Douglas plays an aging author/professor who hasn't published a book in too long a time (but he has tenure, so he's golden) even though his current manuscript-in-progress has exceeded 2,000 pages, and he mentors a pre-Cruisicidal Katie Holmes and a nearly autistic Tobey Maguire while screwing Frances McDormand, the university chancellor who is also married to the director of the English department, excellently portrayed with pretense and egomania by Richard "John Boy Walton" Thomas, and his agent/editor is Robert Downey Jr. and even though his character is gay, he's nothing but Robert Downey Jr., the character he's played since starring in Pound.

If you're an English major, a writer, or a pretentious lit nerd (and that's a largely overlapping Venn Diagram), you'll probably enjoy this flick. I did.

Rating: Frances McDormand% (87%)

photo courtesy of imdb.com

Monday, June 8, 2009

Selection Lager

Selection Lager is a socialist triumph. It's financed by New Brunswick taxpayers and is partially exempt from our "socially responsible" pricing laws that force other beer companies to sell their beer at a certain price in order to ensure that only fancy people with jobs can afford to be alcoholics. I probably won't get it again, not because I'm appalled by my government's decision to compete with its own people at an unfair advantage funded directly by my tax dollars, but because it tastes like the urine of a well hydrated anorexic person.

RATING: 14%

(Image from canadianbeernews.files.wordpress.com.)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Dance Flick


Because I only review the finest in fine cinema, I present to you this review of Dance Flick. Having paid my dues with Save the Last Dance (dancing AND interracial romance? sold!), Centerstage, and Stomp the Yard, I went into this movie with no pretensions about what I was getting -- and I was pleasantly surprised. For a movie that clocks in under 90 minutes, it managed to squeeze in parodies of a bunch of movies, some I never even saw (Take the Lead, Twilight, High School Musical, Hairspray Part Deux: John Travolta Dance-Off). The movie was totally ridiculous, completely over-the-top, oftentimes offensive, and decently funny. It's cool to watch Damon Wayans, Jr. take up the crown of the already-too-large Wayans family empire, and Shoshana Bush has a goofy Sarah Chalke thing going for her that I dug. And Amy Sedaris plays a dance teacher with camel toe -- that woman is up for anything. Wait for it to come on Starz!, but don't hate yourself for watching the whole way through.

RATING: 55%

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Semi-Pro

I don't know, I guess I just wanted it to be possible to live in a world where the movie Semi-Pro starring Will Ferrell was funny. Sure, it probably couldn't have been and also wasn't, but wouldn't that have been great if it somehow pulled it off? The plot is it's the 1970s and Will Ferrell is the eccentric owner/announcer/coach/promoter/point guard on a struggling fictional ABA team, the Flint Tropics. The movie practically writes itself (bad thing).

RATING: 21%

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Urination

No, I'm not reviewing the finer subtleties of urine, but rather the act of expelling urine from the urethra (in my case, the penis). I like urinating most of the time. When I've been drinking, and have to urinate, it's just time away from drinking, but sometimes you need a break from the day. And sometimes, you've got to do it so bad the ladies describe it as orgasmic. Hey, I'm not the guy who makes those groaning sounds while he urinates. Show some class, man. Urinating is probably more fun for guys because you can urinate on a church lawn at 3am, behind a dumpster off the freeway, in a bottle, etc. For women those tricks are not so easy. But hey, it beats pissing out a kidney stone. Unless you're a woman.

RATING: 80%

Monday, June 1, 2009

Yo! Noid on NES

Since an amazingly generous commenter got me this amazing toy, I've been able to play this obscure, forgotten, oft-maligned game that I so enjoyed when I was young. And you know what? It's really hard! (That's what she said.) My boyfriend thought I kept dying and couldn't even pass the first level because I was drunk, but further sober attempts have humbled us both. If anything hits you, you totally die. If you step on a level when it's only a little bit under water, you totally die. And then it's back to the beginning of the level for you! You have only your yo-yo for defense, and the power you pick up from collecting scrolls. If you manage to pass, you have to face a Noid of a different Noid race in a pizza-eating contest, and the other Noid talks mad smack. Apparently, this game takes place in New York -- which makes sense, because I know I grew up around a lot of hockey-stick-wielding polar bears. All these things considered, I cannot stop playing this game. Oh Noid, I missed you!

RATING: 67%

Neologisms

bromance, broseph, dudevorce, man-crush, lesbro, hasbian, doucher, douchelganger, douchebagette, douchetarded, fucktarded, manorexic, pregorexic, Octo-Mom, epic-fail, unfriend, lollz, carpocalypse, recessionista, sexting, ginormous, junk-in-the-trunk, neighbornet, swine flucation, swine break, shitreous, Twitterrhea, tweet (v.), facebook (v.), dubya, bushism, tough economic times (political), economic crisis (political), freedom fries (political, dated), ‘the N word’ (political), folksonomy, mcmansion, mcjob, mcCainiac, demotards, brokeback.


Rating: Idiocracy

My weekend in Key West

That picture of a completely devastated surf and turf that was paid for by my brother in law pretty much sums up how awesome my weekend was. Also, I rode a mechanical bull and stayed on for all eight seconds. Huz-zah.

Rating: 97%

Toni Morrison reading her own books on cd


Please, Aunt Toni, stop reading your own work on cd. Let someone else do it.

I love to bring you along on road trips. You make a traffic jam far less painful through a strange inverse relationship between lower road rage corresponding to lengthier descriptions of slavery and child abuse.

But please, no more reading your own work. The lip-smacking noises every time you took a breath during Beloved were really nasty and I couldn't finish my bag of chicharrones. Maybe that's a good thing.

Imagine what you sound like... your hoarse and breathy voice like a seventy year old Tori Amos... your unnecessary prologues... "In the town, there is a street. On the street, there is a house. In the house, there lives a family. And in this family... there is incest."

GAAAAAHHHHKKKK!

Rating: 49%

Image courtesy of Kidsdontgetit.wordpress.com