the beat
bookslut blog
dude. man. phat.
jane espenson
josh friedman
neil gaiman
tim goodman
molly ivins
listen, lady...
lj friends
mastodon city
pc petri dish
theo's gift
warm your thoughts
wil wheaton

los angeles
web design

ostrich ink

John Bowe (ed):
Gig: Americans Talk About Their Jobs
Gail Simone:
Birds of Prey
Sarah Vowell:
Take the Cannoli
Howard Zinn:
People's History of the U.S.


The Daily Show
Prison Break
The Office (US)
Kitchen Confidential
Veronica Mars

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Sunday, February 29, 2004

Super-quick Oscar picks!

'Cause Mom asked:


Tim Robbins - MYSTIC RIVER

Charlize Theron - MONSTER (I hate doing the obvious thing, but what can you do?)

Renée Zellweger - COLD MOUNTAIN


LOST IN TRANSLATION (A super-long shot, and one I'll probably regret, but this movie feels like this year's Pianist - respected and loved, but incapable of beating the frontrunner in the big race. Plus, it had a damn clear vision. I have to respect that.)


ŽELARY (Holocaust rule applies)

THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING (Fingers crossed, anyway).



The most success I ever had with Oscar predictions was the year I did the worst case scenario picks. These aren't quite so pessimistic, and thus I'm gonna foul up somewhat. One thing to rely on in this world -- the Academy and I never, ever agree.

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Feel the burn, y'all!

To cope with the fact that in a few short hours, I will be rising from my nice warm bed to go to the gym, I present you with:

Liz's Ultimate Exercise Mix
The Test - Chemical Brothers
Canned Heat - Jamiroquai
September - Earth Wind and Fire
Boys of Summer - Henley, Don
Rock Star (Jason Nevins Remix} - N.E.R.D.
Mmmbop - Hanson
Bootylicious - Destiny's Child
Shut Up - Black Eyed Peas
Waiting For You - Seal
Fighter - Aguilera, Christina
St. Elmos Fire (Man In Motion) - Parr, John
Easy - Groove Armada
Everybody Got Their Something - Costa, Nikka
All Things (Just Keep Getting Better) - Wildlife Feat. Simone Denny
Hungry - Kosheen
Madder - Groove Armada

Set on random, repeat as necessary. The lesson learned?

I have crappy taste in music when I'm sweating.

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Friday, February 27, 2004

Today, as I drove home from work, heading westward, the clouds covering half the sky let loose rain, fat droplets that immediately slicked the roads and slowed traffic to an easy, contemplative pace.

I held one hand in front of me to block the mass of light descending towards the ocean, used the other hand to flip on the windshield wipers. My neck craned back, my entire body tilting to attempt to avoid the blinding glare. The rain pattered down. The new Azure Ray song blared from the radio...

Move on, move on, It's like the clock is pacing

A moving truck pulled in front of me, tall enough to block out the sun. My hand lingered in the air, a reflex now unnecessary, while my eyes began to see again, focusing on the windshield wipers of other cars, in sync with my own. Focusing on the soft peach sunset, the grey clouds, and just the faintest remaining hint of blue.

Like moving into the future, I thought to myself. Difficult, clouded.

But so damn gorgeous.

When I got off the freeway, I looked to my right.

God help me, there was a rainbow.

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Thursday, February 26, 2004

You know what's cool about being a vague sort of agnostic? You're not compelled by your faith to spend two hours watching a man of peace beaten and ultimately tortured to death.

You do end up missing out on Animatronic Jesus. But I can live with that.

A fun fact from the IMDb trivia department, however:

It's Mel Gibson's hands that nail Christ to the cross during the Crucifixion scene. Gibson decided this because he didn't want any further conspiracy about who was blamed for killing Jesus.

Good to know.

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I now know what a bukkake is.

Whether this is a good or a bad thing remains to be seen.

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Mind Games

Reference to last night's Angel, but nothing too spoilerish

Last night, Das Roomie and I were watching the new episode, and as I TiVoed through the first commercial break we started laughing about the question that plagued Angel and Spike: If an astronaut and a caveman got into a fight, who would win?

"Man, that's just ridiculous," I choked out.

"It's totally impossible. And the caveman's clearly got the advantage," she replied.

"What are you talking about? Astronauts are in super shape-"

"-sure, in no gravity-"

"-no, they have to run laps and stuff and lift weights before they go into space -- didn't you ever see Space Cowboys?"

"It doesn't matter, because the astronaut's going to get out of his spaceship and be all disoriented, and that's when the caveman's going to make his move."

"You don't think the caveman's gonna be a bit disoriented himself at seeing an astronaut coming out of a spaceship? It totally cancels out. Besides, cavemen are totally pack animals -- a solo caveman's gonna be all weirded out and such. Astronauts are prepared to survive by themselves for months at a time in space-"

"-sure, in SPACE-"

"-it's all about MENTAL preparation, MENTAL-"

"Meanwhile, the caveman's beating the astronaut's brains out with a rock..."

And so on, laughing the entire time.

You tell me, folks. Astronauts versus cavemen. Smart money's on astronauts -- right?

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Wednesday, February 25, 2004

No one in my family sounds the same. (See comments.)


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Slow news day, huh? Not a lot on my mind today -- been working most of the day on a design project presentation. It's all so exciting.

Tonight, nothing too big is on the agenda -- going to the gym and the grocery store before The O.C. outta da house. Going to borrow an issue of New X-Men that I didn't have during the big reading orgy on Sunday.

Come back home, write two pages, watch Angel, and toddle off to bed. Tres exciting. But it's a life.

There's a storm coming in tonight, allegedly. The sky seems dark and thick through the tinted windows. I haven't been outside all day.

I'm ready for a good storm, I think. Thunder and lightning and life.

33 days until England!

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Tuesday, February 24, 2004

On the Yankee or Dixie quiz, I scored "65% (Dixie). A definitive Southern score!"

Ah, those formative Plano/Austin years... (I lived in Texas from a few months after birth to the age of seven. When I'm tired and/or drunk, a bit of an accent can slip out.)

I'd be interested to see what Eric got on this. He was born in Texas, but technically lived there for less time than I.

So amusing.

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I'm not a huge fan of Andrew Sullivan, but when it comes to gay rights we get along fine.

Bush's announcement this morning has left me angry beyond the telling of it. So very angry. So angry, in fact, that I cannot put fingers to keyboard to describe it.

Instead, I choose to address El Presidente's statement, "Ages of experience have taught humanity that the commitment of a husband and wife to love and to serve one another promotes the welfare of children and the stability of society," as if there was no alternative ever explored until now.

I choose to address El Presidente's comment by refuting it with links.

This isn't an isolated issue, folks. This is a symptom of a problem. This is one group of people imposing their values and beliefs on an entire nation, using the shaky, unstable justification of a public opinion that's too often misrepresented and uninformed. This is about making us less free as a people, not more free. This is about changing the document that binds us together.

This is utterly, completely, despicably WRONG.

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Monday, February 23, 2004

Quelle bookworm

Usually, I use the weekends to catch up on things TiVoed and left unwatched, but with no West Wing reruns, no Daily Show, and an otherwise quiet schedule during the week, I was left with copious reading time this weekend. Given that I'm currently deep into two volumes of historical fiction, one treatise on graphic design, and many different comic book series, this was an excellent thing indeed.

What I'm nearly done with:
The Killer Angels -- On loan from a friend for quite some time, and I'd like to return it before the six month mark. Hard reading at first, gritty and alarming, but once I built up some momentum it started flowing a lot more easily. The emphasis on details is stunning, as is the various perspectives given. I've never grasped the realities of war quite so well. In the movies, it's all so daring and fearsome, but these guys are strapping knives to their empty guns and charging into the fray, staking their lives on a strategy thrown together in the heat of the moment by a college professor from Maine. I think I'm near the end of Day 2. I expect to reach Day 3 tonight.

The Professor and the Madman -- My carry-around book, which I made significant progress in during all the fun tire-repair incidents this weekend. Pretty much a study of two characters brought together by the writing of a dictionary, and the minitua of the various systems used to draft the OED, plus the specificity brought to the author's depiction of Victorian England's slums and madhouses, are just hellaciously entertaining. What I like best about the book, aside from the extended definitions of words heading off each chapter, is its brevity. I don't think it surpasses 250 pages, and that's exactly the right length for it.

The 7 Essentials of Graphic Design -- I've covered five essentials so far, and I enjoy the paradox of a book teaching the basics of clean, simple design with a cluttered, confusing layout. I'm actually learning a great deal, though. Grid systems make a lot more sense now.

What I finished:
New X-Men -- On loan from a friend in issue format, which means that I read about a year and a half's worth of comics in one morning -- a morning spent in shock as Grant Morrison proceeded to rip apart the X-Men universe. And when I say rip apart, I mean rip apart. No wonder they're rebooting the X-Universe this spring (with a bunch of new or revamped books, including Joss Whedon writing Astonishing X-Men)! The last issue of Morrison's run comes out March 17th, and I just have no idea what's going to happen next. It's all... so... weird.

The Richard Roeper book of movie lists -- A Christmas present from the bro, and an entertaining hour or so. Pretty content-less, however, and I didn't agree with a lot of what he said. It's hard for me to go along with a man with such an evident hard-on for A Beautiful Mind.

I'm looking forward to starting some new things, like Michael Chabon's Wonder Boys, this book about the history of women's hair, and a collection of horror short stories that looks cool, and finishing dudes abandoned, like Howard Zinn and James Joyce.

Just gotta finish the old things first.

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In which our heroine faces mortal danger, or I get a flat tire

Mortal danger is overstating the case, of course, but how often do you get to write that?

The weekend was lovely and rainy -- I saw people, ate food, slept in, took in some free theater, read and read and read. It was truly a great weekend -- up until about 1 AM Saturday night, when I left the bar at which I had enjoyed some fine company and a diet Coke to discover that somehow, I had managed to puncture my front right tire with a metal spike. Do not ask me how this happened. It is impossible to explain.

Because of the rain, I pulled into the nearest gas station (featuring bright lights and some vague semblance of cover) to inspect the damage. Then, I thanked the gods above that my cell phone was fully charged. Then, I called my insurance company, which promised to send a tow truck along.

Estimated arrival time: One hour.

It began to pour.

I had a few things working in my favor -- one, I had a bunch of clothes I'd been meaning to donate to Goodwill in the trunk, including an ill-fitting, but warm, sweater coat. Two, I had a coat already, along with a scarf and warm hat. Three, the gas station was deserted but for an attendant. Four, I had an interesting book with me.

So I layered the sweater coat over my lacy top and under my other coat, told the attendant I would be there for a while, turned off my engine, locked the doors, and snuggled into the hat and scarf before beginning to read. The rain pattered down, the windows fogged up with the eventual return of my body heat, and I grew so comfortable that I had nearly nodded off when I heard the faint grumble of the tow truck pulling up behind me.

I bounded out of the car, a lump of coats. "Are you here for ME?" I practically squealed.

Hector grinned, and we were motoring.

Yesterday, though, when my car and I limped into a Pep Boys on the spare tire, the experience was a lot less pleasant. I had hoped to get my actual tire fixed quickly and move onto some cafe-writing afterwards -- instead, the wait was estimated to be two hours and I had to get my valuables out of the car. Hence, me hauling my not-a-purse-bag and laptop case up and down Pico Boulevard, hoping like hell the constant sprinkling wouldn't increase to the point where, on top of everything else, I'd have to juggle an umbrella.

Shelter was found at the Westside Pavillion Barnes and Noble, where I sat on the floor and read comic books, and the Apple Pan, where I tested a hypothesis and found it to be true -- theirs is indeed the best tuna melt out there. Overall, not too bad an afternoon, and I've had worse weekends in general.

But one thing's for sure -- next time a storm comes, I'm going to do my damnedest to stay out of the rain.

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Maren is right -- this is the most awesome title for a book. Ever.


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Friday, February 20, 2004

Oh, how I love the happy gay married people. (This link grokked from Lena)

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Chaos consumes the normally austere exterior of the white hall, the lawn overflowing with fleeing pedestrians.

SENATOR BOB, a overstuffed briefcase clenched to his chest, his tie askew, leads the escape. CONGRESSWOMAN JANE grabs his arm to halt him.

Senator Bob, what is happening?

MegaVote! Megavote is coming!

In the distance, great thudding STOMPS grow in volume and repetition. Something has begun to run.

Megavote is coming? You mean the people will be able to keep
track of our votes and decisions on a weekly basis?

A ROAR echoes. Then another.

Yes! The people will be informed! There is nowhere to hide!

We must flee!

From behind the Capital building, MEGAVOTE stomps into view, towering over the fragile symbol of corrupt representative goverment.

He roars once more, then with a mighty STOMP, brings his immense foot down upon the Dome, popping it like a balloon. A balloon that COLLAPSES to the ground in shambles, debris flying into the air.

Jane stares upward, clasping her hands to her cheeks.


MegaVote has come. Tokyo Washington is doomed.

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So now San Francisco is suing the state over the gay-marriage curb (as well as countersuing the conservative groups trying to block the marriages), and I love that shining city of the north just a little bit more.

A sentiment echoed in the book and the TV show Sex and the City is that romantic love is being kept alive by the gay folk, because we heteros are killing it with our cynicism. I know many ridiculously happy straight couples (too many, one could argue) so I'm not sure if I agree. But if it's up to the homosexuals to save romance, I think they're more than up to the task.

(Link grokked from Whitney. My favorite photo? Funny you should ask.)

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Thursday, February 19, 2004

Mmmmm. Just read a book cover to cover in three hours.

God, I love doing that.

Books are awesome. Not the book I was reading, particularly, but still. Books are the good.

I need to make more time for books. Books, and the fifteen issues of New X-Men a friend is loaning me. But first, time for screenwriting!

(and this week's Angel)

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Dear Internet,

Look, I'm glad so many of you watched Angel last night. But please understand, I was being a good person and waiting for Das Roomie to join me, and she was tied up with stuff, and the hour grew late, and I ended up asleep in my armchair while watching The Office before going to bed.

I haven't seen it yet, okay? I won't be able to see it until later tonight, after finally getting a copy of Sex and the City from the library and doing some writing. No puppets for me until then.

So, please stop taunting me.


Thank you,

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Now these guys know how to rock.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2004

This is from a few days ago, but What Causes Rape? is still a damn good read. Nothing new, but a fairly fresh perspective on it.

Gender issues fascinate me, especially since I'm forever poking at the question of "why can't women be funny?" -- the eternal plight of the female stand-up comic, for example, being jokes about men, followed interminably by "am I right, ladies?" Lucille Ball's pratfalls, Gilda Radner's squeak, Janeane Garofalo's wry drawl -- iconic (or should be), but almost entirely separate from their identities as women. Can you be sexy and funny at the same time? Many male comedy icons aren't, but America has a tolerance for fat men that it lacks for fat women. Which is, needless to say, bullshit. But that's not the first time I've called bullshit on America.

I wonder because I feel better about my apperance these days than I have in recent years, and sometimes it feels like a choice to be made -- be pretty, or be funny. Not that I was particularly funny to begin with, but my lack of self-confidence regarding my appearance felt like a smokescreen, a mask -- camoflage. I blended into the background, I felt, and I could say whatever I wanted as a result. Now, thanks to haircuts and cleansers and three hours a week at the gym, I stand out just a little more. And irrationally enough, I feel like I can say just a little less.

Comedy comes from tragedy, and maybe that's why the fat, squirrelly, balding, unattractive men are so successful at it. They wear tragedy on their outsides, and they tell jokes about it. And we laugh with them, because it's all too easy to understand.

Pretty girls aren't immune to tragedy, I know.

But when you look at them, do you believe it?

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Tuesday, February 17, 2004

People are wondering why GIANTmicrobes! are so popular as presents. This is the easiest question in the world to answer:

When I went to the Gay Pride Parade last summer, there were tons of people loading me down with giveaways. But when I got home, I realized that I didn't have anyplace to put some of the freebies I'd gotten. And clutter is my enemy.

So when Das Roomie got home, I told her I had a surprise for her.

"Candy?" she asked.

"No, syphilis!"

Six months later, I still enjoy telling people that I gave Das Roomie syphilis.

Imagine how much fun ebola could be!

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I did absolutely nothing, and it was everything I thought it could be.

I finished the scarf I've been knitting this weekend, and it's marvelous -- warm and thick and comforting. It's the best scarf in the whole world. I'm wearing it at my desk. Just because.

The habit of knitting and watching TV has become a little engrained, however, and last night when I found Office Space playing on ABC Family, I was too restless to actually sit and watch it. I ended up playing a dozen games of solitare, with actual cards, just for want of something to do with my hands.

Then I tried to figure out how to do a purl stitch, so as to tackle my next project -- knitting another scarf, but flat and more scarf-like. That did not go so well. Maybe I'll just knit Scarf the Next like Scarf the First, in hopes that it will be just as marvelous. The yarn I have for Scarf the Next is cool and multi-colored, but a bit thinner. It's a spring-weight scarf. Hopefully, I'll actually finish it before the end of spring.

I'm actually busy at work today, and I'm busy with fun projects that I enjoy.

Tonight I'll go to the gym and the grocery store, then come home, pack up the laptop, and spend some time in a cafe focusing on the PoMo RomCom. And then I'll return home, sit in my chair, watch a few episodes of The Office, and start knitting Scarf the Next before going to bed.

It's really really sad, how I'm the most boring human being ever.


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Sunday, February 15, 2004

"Hey, so Angel got canceled," I told das roomie.



A long pause.

"Well, it was sucking," she replied.

"Yeah. Remember when it was good?"




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Neil Gaiman sez:

When I tell Mac people this, they smile their secret smile. They know that after we die, we go to a special place, and that those who used Macs will be raised on high, where they can sip their cappucinos and look down and see the virus-infected writhings and screamings of those who used PCs, as the damned Windows users are forever bombarded with boiling projectile vomit from the thousand-foot high screaming thing that used to be Bill Gates.

Yeah, it's true. *g*

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Friday, February 13, 2004

Happy Sappy Goat-Whacking Day

I have never been a huge fan of Valentine's Day - even when I had a date, my feelings regarding the holiday vacillated between shrugging and apathy. Last year was probably the worst, as EVERYONE I knew was in a relationship and ridiculously happy as a result, but I was depressed all the time then. No reason to blame it on the day.

This year, however, there are numerous reasons to enjoy the season of lovin':

  • I got the cutest post-modern Valentine's day card from my parents yesterday, which I may prop up on my desk while working on the PoMo RomCom this weekend.
  • Lady Sisyphus has taught me about the proper ways to celebrate the day, some of which involve goat-whacking.
  • There are not one, but two, fabulous-sounding parties this weekend, at which I will undoubtedly find Twoo Luvvv.
  • I'm getting my hair cut tomorrow so that Twoo Luvvv will not be frightened off by split ends.
  • Not to mention the fact that it's Eric's birthday tomorrow, which is always a reason to celebrate.
  • I get Monday off, which is DIVINE.
  • In case of zombie attack, Das Roomie has given me permission to use her frozen steaks as Zombie Distraction while I hide in my bathroom.
  • I'm not afraid of zombies anymore, as a result.
  • I like my life

And, most importantly, yesterday I saw a picture of two people in love. And there's nothing better than that.

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One reason I might like Starsailor so much? The keyboard riff in "Four to the Floor"'s bridge is nearly identical to the opening of Moby's "Honey."

Just sayin'.

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Fuck you, Ann Coulter

This is bravery, right here.

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In which I bitch about writing, and humanity yawns

I took Wednesday off from my two pages a day thing because of the website redesign, which occupied me from 6 PM to 2 AM that night (with a two hour break in there to watch The OC with friends). But the next day... Maybe it was because I broke up the rhythm, maybe it was because I got less than five hours of sleep, maybe it was just being stuck. But I spent two hours in front of the computer, unable to get anything done.

Which was LAME.

Ended up doing nitpicky revisions for most of that time, cutting down some scenes and expanding some others. Realized that I may have to throw out some pages (by which I mean, cut-and-paste into my "Reeejected!" document) on the post modern romantic comedy I'm writing. In talking with Das Roomie last night, it became clear that I've gotten away from the original concept, meaning that the stuff I'm writing, while necessary character work, just isn't that interesting. Really, I should wallpaper my room with the first five pages of the screenplay, as the first five pages embody exactly what I'm trying to do with this story. (It's the following twenty-two pages where we get a bit off track.)

There's going to be more writing this weekend. Oh yes. Four uninterrupted hours spent focusing on this bitch? So welcome.

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Thursday, February 12, 2004

I'm editing together two posts to note that I've now got RSS syndication available -- at least, I have links to RSS files at the bottom of the sidebar and below, and you may syndicate them at will. This was a huge help, and seems to be going smoothly -- if you do this, let me know how it works for you? Thanks.

XML logo  RSS logo

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I totally saw it coming. They were just too perfect to be true.

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In the NPR must-listen category, this commentary on 1974, the worst-ever year for music, cracked me up to no end. Hopefully, it'll do the same for Dad, a true afficienado of crappy pop.

Also, a note regarding Senator Kerry. The more I learn about his political career, the less I like him. But the more I learn about his personal life, the more I like him. And the more delegates he accumulates, the more confounding this becomes.

Man, if this was high school, it'd all be a lot easier. Kerry'd be a great student body president. The administration would take him seriously, 'cause ever since he got involved with student council he doesn't start riots and protests anymore, and the smart kids all know him from the honors classes they're in together, and the rich kids would vote for him because their parents are friends with his parents, and the jocks would like him because he used to be on the football team that season we totally won, and the burnouts and rejects would be so totally bored by him that they'd just ditch assembly and smoke out behind the gym. And yeah, when he took that kickback from the soda vendor, that was pretty lame, but he would organize a totally awesome Winter Formal (well, he wouldn't ACTUALLY organize it, but he'd totally help make it happen). I bet he'd even get up and play with the band! How cool would that be?

And besides, it'd only be for a year, and when that hottie John Edwards is a junior, it'll totally be his turn. I mean, I don't know if he'll be any good at it, but my friend Alexandra? She says that he's totally gonna break up with his girlfriend soon, and if he shows up at that party on Friday I'm totally gonna tell him that I think he'd be a great President. I mean, he looks really buff in his letterman jacket. And that's what matters, right?

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The really refreshing thing about giving up completely on Angel ever retrieving a hint of its former glory? You can look at things like this and just fucking LAUGH.

"Sounds like jumping the shark," my boss said this morning.

"If you're going to jump the shark," I replied, "you'd BETTER do it with puppets."

I've made this picture my desktop. It's just... so...


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Well, now that everything's more or less up, what do you think?

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Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Nothing's really working yet. But doesn't it look FABULOUS?

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Dated Dean, Married Kerry, Woke Up with Bush sums up a lot of my thoughts on Kerry, quite nicely.

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There are a number of mailing lists I'm on that I just haven't gotten around to unsubscribing from. Movie reviews from a reviewer I fell out of sync with a while ago, reminders about TWoP recaps that are totally unnecessary, due to my current habit of checking the website every hour, the TiVo newsletter I rarely read. And, most ancient of all, irregular mailings from Michael Moore.

I stopped really liking Michael Moore a while ago, certainly before Bowling for Columbine came out. He's a very persuasive filmmaker, and I used to adore Roger and Me, but after a few years of reading his open letters and watching his work, it became clear that the issues Moore loved best were the ones that were the most self-serving. I also don't trust him anymore -- I don't mind histrionics, but I like 'em a bit less manipulative and false. This is why I much prefer Al Franken's commentary -- his dedication to fact-checking is admirable, and he's a lot funnier, too.

So, agreeing with Michael Moore these days does not come easily to me. Yet I can't help but nod my head at this.

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So last night, I saw Starsailor play a set at Amoeba Records, and while it wasn't quite the musical revelation I've been waiting for, it did make me extremely happy. The best part is that I think I'm getting their new CD as part of my KCRW pledge package (I pledged money to public radio -- god, I'm a grown-up) -- a completely random selection on my part, and hopefully well-rewarded. If you don't know them, they've got a tweee little music player up in the top righthand corner of their website-- my favorite track is predictably "Four to the Floor", but others have their appeal.

But it was awesome, standing in the Rock Vinyl E-F section ("This is great," joked my friend, "But it must suck to be the guy who just wanted a copy of Frampton Comes Alive"), watching these goofy British guys play guitars and drums. From twenty feet away, I was able to see the concentration the lead guitarist put into his fingering, able to see them smile at each other as they moved from riff to riff -- able to see them loving the music they played.

I always forget how amazing live rock music can be, mainly because I don't go to shows very often. George Sarah's show last week was interesting -- a string quintet, coupled with Sarah playing around with computers to engineer the exact sound he's looking for -- but it didn't have the energy of a live performance. We sat in an auditorium, leaning back in our comfy chairs, watching the video art playing above the performers. A feast for eyes and ears...

...but not quite as entertaining as four sleepy-eyed British gentlemen in vintage tees and jeans.

Sadly, Starsailor appears to be the ONLY band-with-a-name-starting-with-S-which-Liz-gets-mixed-up-all-the-time not playing at Coachella (damn you, Sparta/Stereolab/stellastarr*/Sidestepper!).

I'll miss them. They were very good indeed.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2004


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So, the new Bookslut is up -- my contribution being two reviews (P by Andrew Lewis Conn and How Soon is Never? by Marc Spitz) and The Second Book-to-Film Experiment results.

The stuff not by me is also fabulous. Read it all.

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This morning is AWESOME. I got nearly nine hours of sleep last night, I'm halfway through a cup of coffee, and I am wearing fabulous new pants-on-sale! And holy mother of God, but do I love my new pants-on-sale. My new pants-on-sale are so awesome. I'm already planning all the fabulous things I plan on doing in my pants. They're cargo-ish, but dressy enough to wear to work. The cuffs not only roll up marvelously, but can be tied up with drawstring ties, so they're perfect for the beach. The material's light, but not too thin -- so they'll be great for Coachella's 90 degree days and 70 degree nights. And the British will be wowed, I must say, by how marvelous my ass looks in my fabulous new pants-on-sale. It's a thing to wonder at.

Imagine what'll happen when I wear them with my new pink $10 sweater. Imagine!

As a result of my pants-on-sale and my $10 sweater, my budget's a little tighter than usual this month. I have made a pact with myself, though -- if I bring my lunch this week and next, I can continue to go out and do fun things that do not cost more than $5. This actually isn't too bad a handicap, as the Los Feliz 3's matinee prices fit snugly into this category. As does my purchase of this week's 1602.

Mmmm. Sweet comic-book goodness. Mmmm.

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Monday, February 09, 2004

I'm not a particularly good sleeper -- I'm restless often, have a hard time settling into dreams. But I don't usually have a huge problem with insomnia -- it doesn't usually take me longer than an hour to get to sleep, and that's if I've been indulging in caffeine. I've been surprised, of late, as to how regular my rhythms have become. My body's been settling into this life fairly well. I'm sleeping more than I ever did in college, at least.

This morning, though, I woke up dying of thirst around 4 AM, and just couldn't get back to sleep. Not even a really bad Star Trek novel (brought down to LA during the Great Book Nostalgia Fest of Christmas 2003) could conk me out. So instead, I lay in bed, worked on my scarf, and watched an episode of Homicide: Life on the Streets, which I've borrowed on DVD. (Holy crap, that's a good show.) Watching the sun come up through my window, all the while. I was the first one into the office this morning, made it past lunchtime without even indulging in caffeine... Until around 4 PM, when I nearly collapsed from withdrawal and exhaustion. Strong tea and Advil helped get me home, but now I'm limp as a rag, the faint buzz of sleep deprivation a tangible presence on my brow.

Early to bed for me, I think.

But first, I'm going to write two pages today. Since Friday, this has been my mantra. It's easy to write two pages of something, after all. Easiest thing in the world. Sometimes, when the rhythm's good, it means three or four or five pages instead. And that's a good thing too. But two pages is all I need to do. Two pages are all I'm going for.

Since I started repeating "just two pages" to myself, I've reworked twenty pages to smooth along a second act, outlined the next twenty pages of the screenplay, and gotten a few key scenes done. Not to mention a page of comic book script, a page of character descriptions for another screenplay idea, a page of a short story in progress, and some brainstorming for a play.

Since Friday.

Plus, I saw a movie and the George Sarah concert, enjoyed a night of bar-hopping, bought new pants, hung out with friends I hadn't seen in a while, went to the gym, and finally, finally finished Conversations with Wilder and started one of my new books about graphic design.

Since Friday.

This is pretty good for me.

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Thanks be to Burned By The Sun for pointing me to the Coachella annoucement.

Cannot WAIT to see:
Radiohead - The Pixies - Kraftwerk - Wilco - Kinky - Stereolab - Howie Day - Mark Farina - Electric Six - Phantom Planet - The Cure -Air - Belle & Sebastian - Basement Jaxx - Paul Van Dyk - The Crystal Method - Ferry Corsten

Plus, there'll be discovering new bands, and eating not-particularly-great food, and paying $20 for water, and laying on the grass, listening to music, and looking at the stars.

And it's only three months away...

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Sunday, February 08, 2004

Quick notes

21 Grams is by far the best recipient-of-a-heart-transplant-seeks-out-widow/er-of-the-heart-donor movie I've seen in the last ten years.

It does not have a lot of competition, however.

I bought a pink sweater on sale for ten dollars yesterday. I cannot describe how in love with it I am. Okay, maybe I can later.

I have way too much capacity for knowledge. I know who Gabrielle Carteras is, for example. I've never seen her in anything, don't particularly care about her (a bit too young for 90210, I'm afraid) and yet I know who she is. I want this information deleted. I want a Lacuna Inc gift certificate.

And now, I must jet off and live my exciting life. Wheee.

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Friday, February 06, 2004

Going to see George Sarah at the Getty tonight. This is pretty cool.

At some point tomorrow, I think I'm going to see In America or Mystic River. This is also pretty cool.

Plus, I think I'm gonna put in a lot of cafe-writing time. Go to the gym on Sunday. Finish reading Conversations With Wilder (picked it up again Wednesday) and start one of my books about design. Knit the rest of my scarf. Watch The Office: Series 1. Sleep. Cook. Shop.

The life I wish I lived all the time?

I live it on the weekends.

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A paradox of pants

I have four pairs of dress pants that I wear regularly.

One of them is very high-waisted, and is prone to shrinking in the wash.

I do not have much of a waist. My figure is vaguely trunk-like. The dress-for-success people call it rectangular. Low-rise pants have been a godsend, as high-waisted pants (such as these) are designed for people with hips that taper into an O'Hara-esque hourglass.

When I wear these high-waisted pants right after washing them, they tend to fit fairly tightly.

After wearing them for a few hours, I start to feel fat and depressed.

I eat something fattening to make myself feel better.

This does not help the waist issue any.

I take off the pants when I get home and put them in the hamper.

The next time I do laundry, I wash the pants.

A few days later, I wear the pants.

The cycle continues.

In theory, I like the pants. They've got big bellbottomy bottoms, look great with my grey button-down, and were a ten-dollar thrift store find. God help me, I even mended the cuffs last night (they were frayed). Because I like the pants so much.

The moral of this story, though? I need new pants.


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I don't often link to This Modern World, but this morning's post was particularly good. And it does a nice job of summing up what's going on in my head, politics-wise, these days.

That small fraction of my head, of course, that isn't obsessed with BOOBIES.

It's worth noting that last night's Daily Show was more brilliant than it had any call to be. If you didn't see it -- weep for what was lost.


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Let's get real about boob tube: "If you're expecting a cheap 'Everybody Loves Boobs' joke here, forget it. Because this is serious business and we've got to be committed to change."

Tim Goodman is a man of vision. I want to believe in Tim Goodman's world.

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Thursday, February 05, 2004

I swear to god, EVERY TIME I feel a sudden burst of curiousity as to when the next 1602 issue is coming out, I'll check my local store's upcoming releases page to discover that it's coming out the next week.

Every. Single. Time.

This means that either 1602, like getting my period and paying my cable bill, has become a part of my monthly cycle or...

I have superpowers.

This is clearly not a day for extended entries about drama. Time to play with Flash some more!

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In digging through The Morning News archives (a zine I'd happily write for, were I, you know, funny) I came across an old story by Jessa about her former job as a sex librarian.

I want that job.

Actually, I just want to say that's my job. Would make the bar scene a whole lot more interesting. *g*

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So, I maintain a pretty ambivalent email-forward policy -- I enjoy the funny ones, but don't forward them myself (as most people do not share my attitude). However, this one made me smile enough to share with you, the half dozen people who come by my little nook:

> > >
> > > Today is International Very Good Looking
> Damn
> > Smart People Day, so
> > >please send this message to someone you think
> fits
> > this description.
> > > Please do not send it back to me as I have
> > already received it over
> > >fifty thousand times and my in box is jammed
> full!
> > >

So true. *g*

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::Bangs head against wall::


I think I want to write about drama later. But first, to catch up with the world I abandoned for illness.

Yeah, that kinda sucked.

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Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Mmmmm. Yes. Want this.

Also, would like to stop being sick. As of now, whatever stomach bug knocked me out for the past two days seems to be fading away. But now I'm going to go lay down again. Because sitting upright? Sucks.

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Monday, February 02, 2004

In which vengeful gods are appeased, and I dye my hair

So Friday, if you didn't notice, wasn't going so well. I'd stayed up way too late the night before, overslept, didn't shower, and overall was a big ol' cranky-pants. Plus, the work just wasn't happening -- the best part was when an hour and a half of edits were lost at 4:55 PM, and my boss just said "Screw it and go home."

So I was going to, and had plans for a major sulkfest all lined up. But in the car, I said to myself, "Self, you are dirty and need a shower. If you go to the gym before you go home, then you can take a nice relaxing shower and feel clean and warm and good."

I didn't pay attention, of course. You can't trust the voices in your head, after all. But just when I was going to take the exit that would lead to home, some unknown force compelled me to stay on the freeway one extra exit - the exit that would take me to the gym.

And once that decision was made, the rest of the night... Just went perfectly. I got a great parking space in front of the building, burned through my sit-ups, and even scored my favorite cardio machine. As I pseudo-skied, I realized, hey, dying my hair always makes me feel good. So afterwards, I walked to the drugstore. And my favorite hair dye brand in my favorite shade of red? Was half off.

Thus, a lesson was learned -- sacrifice sweat to the gods, and they will reward you.

The rest of the weekend was pretty great, too. I got my laundry done at last, saw Triplets of Belleville and Master and Commander (both of which I really liked, especially as great examples of visual storytelling), ate sushi, drank a vanilla chai latte, and watched the Super Bowl with sports nerds who explained obscure rules like "leaping." And the last half of the game was actually interesting! How often does that happen during the Super Bowl?

I even watched Survivor: All Stars. And it turns out I really, really, really missed Big Gay Naked Richard. Occasionally, I will cave and admit to some reality TV snootiness, but I think I'm going to give this a shot. If only for Big Gay Naked Richard.

Richard Hatch is naked. Survivor All-Stars has officially begun!

I'm such a sucker.

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Paul Rudnick on His New Play (and a Very Gay Year for Theater) (NY Times registration required):

GREEN: Why do you think straight audiences are going [to The Boy From Oz]? It can't only be to see Hugh Jackman take his shirt off, because how many times can that excite you enough to pay $100?

PAUL RUDNICK Science hasn't determined that yet. Still being studied.

And that's why Paul Rudnick is so my gay boyfriend. Plus, check out the photo. Hottie!

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