Thursday, January 31, 2008


Who was an instant fan of Mario when Nintendo came out at the brink of the 1990s?

Mario was HUGE when I was in my kindergarten years, and it still remains an awesome video game, in my opinion, because of its simplistic boards and levels. Games nowadays have detailed plots and many buttons to play with--Nintendo was as simple as it gets with the basic controller. Who wouldn't fall in love with Mario then?

I was definitely in love as a five-year-old. I would eat grilled cheese or mac-and-cheese and play this game for hours. I even got a free t-shirt, courtesy of a fruit snack box, of a Mario t-shirt that I was devastated to part with when I was too big to wear it. I was so angry at my little brother for getting the hand-me-down.

Anyway, the point of my mini-ramble is that I found this video on YouTube where someone beats Mario in five minutes. It's RIDICULOUS to watch, especially if it took you a long time to beat the game when you were younger. Let me know what you think of this.

Do you think this guy sat down and did this all in one sitting (the taping of this video) or do you think each level was taped by itself and then everything was pieced together?

This is wild. You must see it if you consider yourself a fan of Mario. It's hilarious, and it makes me nervous (that he's going to die every time, because I would) and a bit frustrated (because he puts my skills to shame).


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

American Gladiators

As you all know, American Gladiators has returned since its hiatus from when it initially aired in 1991. Now, Gladiators is hosted by Hulk Hogan and Laila Ali, and I have to admit, I am a frequent watcher. Watching reruns of Gladiators on late-night, high-channel TV was hilarious. It was just as good as watching Nickelodeon GUTS reruns from the early 90s. The return of Gladiators is pretty amazing, perhaps because it is just as corny as it was almost fifteen years ago.

I am much more involved with the new 2008 series than I am with the past seasons of Gladiators, but these new gladiators are badass. They are so into it that I normally hold myself laughing. These gladiators include Blast, Crush, Fury, Hammer, Hellga, Justice, Mayhem, Militia, Siren, Stealth, Titan, Toa, Venom, and Wolf. Their names are even pretty funny, and it's funny to watch them play their roles.

If you were a gladiator, what name would you give yourself?

Imagine that your job was being a gladiator... For work, you would come in and practice events like pulling people down from rings, wrestling on a moving stand, shooting nerf darts from a far distance, stuffing people in powerball, and jousting on platforms. Not a bad job. And in the meantime, you stay absolutely ripped and go on a power trip whenever you compete and defeat small-town competetors who really think they can beat you. And I bet that's a cool job to spit out to people. You could get so many free drinks at a bar! "I'm a Gladiator..." but I bet that might get old after a while as people ask you the same questions and perhaps try to take you down in a bar setting. Not as cool.

They're corny comments on the show are ridiculous, and constant. Hulk Hogan is the worst, but I know he's being fed cards by the writers on the show. The chiropractor gets his "back cracked" when he's taken down by a gladiator, or you have competetors who give the motivational speeches on why they're going to take down a gladiator themselves. It's non-stop cornball--and that's one reason I love it. Try playing a drinking game with it (as I have before), and drink whenever some corny line is played. It's actually pretty fun, and hilarious.

My main question though is, which do you like better, the old Gladiators or the new? Or, why do you like the show or dislike it? I'm curious to see how the public feels about Gladiators.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Has anyone seen Frank Caliendo from FrankTV?

He does some really great impressions, impersonating the cast of Seinfeld, John Madden, Bill Clinton, Mr. Bush, Chris Farley, Chris Rock, Scooby Doo, Al Pacino, Robert DeNiro, Robin Williams, Casey Casem, etc. Check it out here if you have a few minutes. It's pretty hysterical.

What do you think?

Monday, January 28, 2008

Crazy Marley

Marley and I. I think I've become the obsessed parent. Maybe I am because I'm calling myself a parent.

One thing I do not understand about animals is their moods. I'll explain. Marley's moods are always the same at all hours--she likes to sleep at certain times and play at certain times, but those times do not coincide with our habits. Is there any way to break that chain, or is that embedded?

For example, Marley is affectionate and sleepy all afternoon, she is playful and sleepy until midnight, but once we go to bed at midnight, she is wack-o and off the wall. She is that was all through the early morning hours. Why is that?

Is is the same way that we function at certain times as we do? Is it personal to the being, be it human or animal?

I'm hardly one who knows anything about animals, but maybe one of you is an animal expert who could shed some light for me.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Cross-Country Travel

I just watched About Schmidt yesterday (in my obsessive phase of reading, writing, watching in excess due to no job); it's a pretty old movie from back when I was in high school--2001 or 2002, something like that. It's a Jack Nicholson movie--I've been in a Nicholson frenzy it appears as well--but the main drive of the movie got me thinking...

After Schmidt retires at 66, he really begins to start opening his eyes about his life, and he stops living in that pattern of Monday to Friday at an office job. His wife dies, allowing him more time to sit and reflect about the past 66 years, but at least he gets the chance to really think about his life, especially at such an old age when you've learned so much already.

What would you do if you're 66, retired, you have some money in the bank, and your spouse dies?

In the movie, Schmidt takes his Winnebago and drives around the country--something that I would LOVE to do given that I retire and have the ability to do so. He goes to all the old places he grew up, like his childhood town and college, basically reconnecting himself with his old stomping grounds.

Personally, I would probably sell my house and get rid of a lot of the clutter from the past 66 years. I would downsize, perhaps a condo or something, and do something similar: I'd get a smaller RV and travel around the country, perhaps with a close friend who is also retired. Imagine! Life would be so simple, and you would have no time limits, nothing holding you back...

If you were going to travel across the country by car somehow, what stops would you HAVE to make?

I'd definitely want to go through the West, definitely to Chicago, Arizona, Seattle, up the coast of California, Louisiana, Maine, and a nice stop in Canada, somewhere, anywhere.

What would you do? Where would you go? The possibilities are endless here...

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


This has been a delayed blog post. Exactly a week ago, I adpoted the cutest little kitten, who we named Marley. She is absolutely adorable, as you'll see below.

We were thinking about getting a kitten, and ironically enough, the day I mentioned it to my mother, she discovered flyers for a free kitten. Marley's mother was a one-year-old stray who was taken in and had four kittens shortly afterwards. She is the smallest of her siblings, and when we took her in, she had (and still has) a fresh cold--but we find it cute.

Marley is a little monster--it's fun to sit back and watch her. Everything is so simple with infants, or animal infants, just seeing them explore things that we are so familiar with. How does this little thing approach life? I find it fascinating to watch.

She is a little adventurer, free spirit, always trying to climb the highest that she possibly can, always a ball full of energy, but also loving to cuddle and fall asleep as close to my face as possible. Even when you giver her medicine, she takes it and gets over it quickly. She's a better sport than I am!

Anyway, I am posting pictures I finally uploaded to my computer below. Some pictures don't do her justice because she always moves or freaks out whenever the flash comes on, but we tried about 80 times, so I hope that some of these aren't too bad.

Marley on the bed

She's a climber

She loves Michael. She climbed right into his arms. She loves to climb into little crevices and fall asleep. Michael's arms were just another option apparently.

She looks badass here.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Blue Monday

Don't be too sad today.

Today, Martin Luther King Day, Monday, January 21st, is deemed as "Blue Monday," the most depressing day of the year according to psychologists.


This equation, completed by a Cardiff University professor, explains why:

[W+(D-d)x T to the Q power

M x Na

I know, that means nothing to anyone, but look at what the equation really means:

The model was broken down using 6 immediately identifiable factors; weather (W), debt (d), time since Christmas (T), time since failing our new year’s resolutions (Q), low motivational levels (M) and the feeling of a need to take action (Na. The equation calculates that Monday, January 21, 2008 is officially the worst day of the year, when the Christmas glow has faded away, New Year’s resolutions have been broken, cold Winter weather has set in and credit card bills will be landing on doormats across the land - whilst the January pay-check is still one week away.

Don't forget the fact that it's also a Monday for workers.

I found all of this information at this website.

Keep happy today, despite the temperature of a high of 20 today. Do something good for yourself! What are you doing today that will make today an excellent day?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Bucket List

Has anyone seen or heard of this new movie with Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman called The Bucket List?

I saw it last night, but I haven't seen any advertisements about it. Given, I don't really watch much television, but the title was completely unfamiliar to me.

Anyway, this was an amazing movie. It's about two older guys (the lead stars I mentioned before) who get cancer, and it's their journey to try to live life to its fullest until they die. They create a "Bucket List" (a list of things they want to do before they kick the bucket) and they try to satisfy that list before they die.

It is a sappy movie, but it's very comical--making up for its sad plot with constant comic relief. It's a movie that made me want to do something different or out of the ordinary when I left the theatre. Even though I'm only 22, it made me think about what I want to do before I die, and what I have already done that I am proud of.

Would giving this assignment to students be too controversial, even if it connected with course material? I think that it would be meaningful to them, and they could actually use it or reference it in the future.

If you could make a Bucket List, what would you put on it?

I will put some of my brainstorms here, but I want to know what's on yours too!

My Bucket List (in progress--initial brainstorm)

1. Publish something
2. Climb a mountain
3. Travel Europe
4. Change someone's life for the better
5. Travel up the west coast
6. Be a mother
7. See all of my favorite artists live in concert
8. See Conan O'Brien live
9. See Saturday Night Live
10. Develop spirituality

Mine will continue. I will add. But what are some of yours?

Thursday, January 17, 2008


Does anyone enjoy purchasing really cheap books? Does anyone want to accumulate a large library like I do and really likes getting deals on books?

Well, I just discovered this amazing website,, which is ridiculously cheap. It's even cheaper than Amazon, and I normally shop Amazon because it is the cheapest. I bought four books for $20, which really isn't that bad with shipping and handling. The shipping and handling was much more than the book! Most of the books I searched only cost $1, but getting the books is where they hit you with costs.

Check it out. Buy cheap books!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Will Ferrell

Being the big Will Ferrell fan that I am, I try to watch all of his movies, even if they don't appear too great in previews (ahem, Melinda and Melinda). Tonight, I rewatched Blades of Glory, and it made me think how good his movies are. I know when movies are well made when I can watch them multiple times, entertained each time, still laughing like when I saw it. Jim Carrey has the same effect on me. Adam Sandler can be hit or miss, but he does a pretty good job.

The movie got me thinking though... Will Ferrell has been making a lot of movies, and some of my friends say they get nervous that he's going to lose his hilarious spark, kind of fade out because he makes so many movies and he can only use his physical comedy for so long. I don't know if I agree. Do you think he's still got that "it" that makes him funny? How long do you think he can go and still remain so popular and consistently funny?

If you look at the list below, he's been making pretty good films for ten years, not counting the time he put into SNL during the 90s. He dominated SNL when he was there. He's also played versatile roles, mixing it up from more serious roles (Stranger than Fiction) to musical roles (The Producers) to his wacky roles (Night at the Roxbury, Blades of Glory, etc). He has been choosing to do a lot of sports movies, perhaps because of his goofy build and body and because he uses physical comedy for a lot of laughs, but do you think it's too much? I'm a big fan, but I just wonder if others don't buy into it as much.

Of all the movies he has made, which one is your favorite? Everyone has one.

Or, which do you dislike or think he could have passed up on or could have done better with?

Or, who's your favorite character? Is it classic like Mugatu or Steve Butabi? Ricky Bobby? Ron Burgundy? Sky Corrigan? Or more recent like Chazz Michael Michaels or Harold Crick?

Blades of Glory (2007)
Stranger than Fiction (2006)
Talladega Nights: The Legend of Ricky Bobby (2006)
Curious George (2006)
The Producers (2005)
Winter Passing (2005)
Wedding Crashers (2005)
Bewitched (2005)
Kicking and Screaming (2005)
The Wendell Baker Story (2005)
Melinda and Melinda (2004)
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)
Starsky and Hutch (2004)
Elf (2003)
Old School (2003)
Boat Trip (2002)
Zoolander (2001)
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001)
The Ladies Man (2000)
Drowning Mona (2000)
Superstar (1999)
Dick (1999)
Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999)
The Suburbans (1999)
A Night at the Roxbury (1998)
The Thin Pink Line (1998)
Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)

Friday, January 11, 2008

Memoir Topic

If you had to write a memoir about your life, what would you focus on?

For my master's thesis, I decided that I wanted to explore the memoir, and he has offered me the option to actually write a memoir instead of just researching some focused topic related to the memoir. I have to select memoirs and read them carefully, learning how I can craft my own.

But when it comes down to it, isn't it strange to analyze our lives and pick apart single focuses of difficulty or a time/period of learning? I find it hard to take my life and stick it under a magnifying glass, even though I try to constantly, but I find it difficult to just choose one focus from life.

So, what would your focus be? I'm pondering a handful.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Quentin Tarantino Movies

Walking through Hollywood Video, I passed by a movie cover that could only be for a movie by someone like Quentin Tarantino. I hadn't even heard of the release of this movie, Death Proof, until I saw about five copies of it on the rack.

I am a Tarantino fan (perhaps not extremely hard core as others), but I admire his work and I will see them when they come out with anticipation and excitement. His films, a lot of homages, have such certain characteristics to them that you can start to see that patterns between films and see the continuity of his artistic and creative talent as a writer with a gifted imagination.

For Tarantino fans out there, what film impressed you the most? Which would you consider your favorite? I will provide a list below (the films he has written)...

Death Proof (2007)
Grindhouse (2007)
Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004)
Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003)
Jackie Brown (1997)
Curdled (1996)
From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Dance Me to the End of Love (1995)
Four Rooms (1995)
Natural Born Killers (1994)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
True Romance (1993)
Reservoir Dogs (1992)
My Best Friend's Birthday (1987)

I'm a big fan of Pulp Fiction, despite some really f'ed up parts in it that seriously disturb me, but the dialogue and the writing impress me. I think that movie has one of the most disturbing scenes I have ever seen in a movie, but that left a lasting impression on me. Other parts are just genius, or have one-liners that stay with you, like "I shot Marvin in the face!" Definitely a classic.

What's your favorite? Why?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Conan's Beard

Has anyone been watching Conan O'Brien lately?

He's back on the air, despite the writer's strike, and he's now supporting a beard, which he compared back to back with the picture of the young Saint Nicholas in the animated movie Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town. Do compare at this website.

I enjoy that he's making this visual statement about the writer's strike, which is such a big deal in the entertainment world. Honestly, his past couple shows have been very good despite the lack of writers. I think Conan's creativity and comic genius can still keep the show running, and running very well, even though I'm sure more time and effort need to go into the show now.

Watch Conan's breakout bit upon his return from stalemate of not being on the air when he explains the reason behind the beard here.

In my opinion, Conan is so creative and hilarious. Of course he would make a visual attempt in reaction to the recent events. A lot of his comedy is physical comedy, or he just pokes fun at his looks (which aren't as bad as he makes them out to be, but that's comedy), so why not sport a beard to get attention?

(Finding a picture of his beard is a real issue on google picture search...)

What do you think of the beard? Yay or nay?

And what about Dave Letterman's strike beard? I feel like it's getting less attention. Any reason why? What do you think?

Tuesday, January 8, 2008


One of the new features I get with cable (that I just recently received--thus more blogging from this point on) is the On Demand channels. Yesterday, I was watching Music On Demand, specifically VH1's "classics." They featured three Pearl Jam videos from their first album, Ten. These tracks were "Alive," "Even Flow," and "Jeremy."

What really caught my attention was the "Jeremy" video. The other two videos just features Pearl Jam rocking out live at a concert. "Alive" is in black and white with a wave constantly surfacing behind it. "Even Flow" shows more of their wild side, featuring Eddie Vedder jumping from a high point into the crowd to crowd-surf back to the stage. On the other hand, "Jeremy" is told as a story because that's the premise of the lyrics.

Even though I am a Pearl Jam fan, and yes I am behind the times with this blog post, but I never really looked into the "Jeremy" lyrics before yesterday. The music video, acting out much of the lyrics, intrigued me to look into it more. The song is based on a fifteen-year-old boy, Jeremy Wade Delle, who shot himself in front of his entire class in 1991, the same year as the release of the album. Delle entered the classroom and announced "Miss, I got what I really went for" (referencing the gun) and then shot himself in the mouth in front of the class. Nobody saw this coming, but there must have been warning signs as to this end result.

The video ends and begins with newspaper postings and typewriter script writing "Sixty-three degrees. Cloudy. Suburban neighborhood." Vedder comments on the placement of this, and on the music video (from Wikipedia): "It came from a small paragraph in a paper which means you kill yourself and you make a big old sacrifice and try to get your revenge. That all you're gonna end up with is a paragraph in a newspaper. Sixty-three degrees and cloudy in a suburban neighborhood. That's the beginning of the video and that's the same thing is that in the end, it does nothing … nothing changes. The world goes on and you're gone. The best revenge is to live on and prove yourself. Be stronger than those people. And then you can come back."

I do think many people want to commit suicide to prove themselves or bring their pain to others. They want to show others how rotten they've been feeling through the physical act, and that is their way of showing it. It will make others feel that they should have done something (or maybe they shouldn't have done something to the individual) and now they must live with it forever. I've heard many say that suicide is a selfish act. Do we agree?

I agree with Vedder.

The song is also partly based on a kid named Brian who Vedder went to school with. This kid opened fire in the classroom--along the same story lines, in a way, as the Jeremy story. I think this song is ahead of its time, as later on in the later 1990s and early 2000s, school shootings would become more prevalent and would sweep the nation with fear.

Check out more information about the real Jeremy and more on the song. It's actually a really interesting website.

Watch the video here. The lyrics are below to look at.

Comments on anything above? Suicide? "Jeremy"? School shootings?

Pearl Jam -- "Jeremy"

At home
Drawing pictures
Of mountain tops
With him on top
Lemon yellow sun
Arms raised in a V
Dead lay in pools of maroon below
Daddy didn't give attention
To the fact that mommy didn't care
King Jeremy the wicked
Ruled his world
Jeremy spoke in class today
Jeremy spoke in class today
Clearly I remember
Pickin' on the boy
Seemed a harmless little fuck
But we unleashed a lion
Gnashed his teeth
And bit the recessed lady's breast
How could i forget
He hit me with a surprise left
My jaw left hurtin
Dropped wide open
Just like the day
Like the day i heard
Daddy didn't give affection
And the boy was something mommy wouldn't wear
King jeremy the wicked
Ruled his world
Jeremy spoke in class today
Jeremy spoke in class today
Try to forget this...
Try to erase this...
From the blackboard.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride

Hunter S. Thompson fans out there?

I discovered an excellent documentary in Hollywood Video the other day. Apparently, some fans made a documentary on Hunter's life. What I liked about it was that it includes actual video footage and interviews with Hunter. Being a fan myself, I really have only read his works and seen pictures of him. Actually watching his mannerisms and speech really give insights into who this guy was. It makes you understand Gonzo and some of the wild things he's pitched that he's done before.

The documentary, Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride, includes commentaries and interviews with celebrities and friends who knew him including Bill Murrary, Johnny Depp, Nick Nolte, John Cusack, Benecio del Torro, his widow, his first wife, and Ralph Steadman. They really go in depth about making the two films that portray Hunter's works: Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Where the Buffalo Roam, which shows the viewer Hunter's life during Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail.

What I found extremely interesting, besides the comments from close friends who revealed much about Hunter's wild personality throughout the years, was the close relationship between him and Ralph Steadman. They met while covering the Kentucky Derby where they instantly became close friends for their lives. On the documentary, Steadman shows us long-winded messages from Hunter left on his answering machine very early in the morning.

Hunter would stay up during the night, normally crashing after 4 o'clock and would wake up around noon. Those in business with him knew not to call during those hours. And, his friends voiced that if you got a call after 3AM, you either knew that it was trouble or Hunter. Apparently he normally would call friends around 4AM wanting to engage in deep, intellectual conversation. Naturally.

They also showed footage from Hunter's memorial service which he planned out in depth in his will. He had Ralph Steadman draw out the plans for this giant red fist he wanted shooting out of the ground on his property. He wanted his ashes to fire out of the fist, for in the center was a cannon. Upon Hunter's death, Johnny Depp said that he knew what to do. He fronted the money for this expensive monument, where they did hold a service for him and shoot his ashes out of the cannon. Fireworks erupted soon afterwards. That seems like an appropriate way for Hunter to go out--with a bang, literally.

What I got out of it was also this: Hunter had complete control over his life, whether or not he made it seem like that with drugs and alcohol. He wanted to decide when, what, and where no matter what. He even needed to control and have a hand in his own death. It was on his terms. This also seems apparent when you recall the events of his life. Out of control, or in control?

Has anyone seen this film? If not, I heavily recommend it. A new film about his life, The Rum Diaries, will come out soon, shedding more light on his life. I look forward to new insights.

Commentaries on the film or Hunter?

Friday, January 4, 2008

New Years Resolutions

First blog post of the new year. 2008. Weird.

I had to write it down for the first time yesterday. 2008. It's always strange to write the new year the first couple of times, and then you begin to accept it. I always feel strange right before the new year actually creeps up on 12/31. I don't normally think about it too much, but right as the final ten seconds creep over and count down, I feel this strange weight. It's the weirdest feeling--like millions of people are experiencing this same countdown, counting down the last minutes of living in a year. It transitions from living in 2007 to 2008. You can't go back. The years tack on.

Does anyone else know or understand what I'm talking about?

But, this brings me to my question: Does anyone have any new years resolutions? Do share.

I'm not really one for making a resolution, so maybe mine will just be to relax a bit more. Stop being so neurotic or edgy. Loose resolution.

If it is a loose resolution, is there a point? Is a resolution supposed to be something you adamantly stick to and follow? If so, I'm not really a follower of it this year. I bet others are.