Monday, November 28, 2005

I got some .45 shells that'll boost your sales

Check the slight revamp of the sidebar, which will probably only be seen by readers that use Firefox. Notice that I say "readers" as if 75 percent of my page loads aren't me checking to see if my corrected typos are appearing.

Great archive of talented City Paper shutterbug Mike Regan here. The dude really knows his ironic juxtaposition, no? Next time you see me, please punch me out for using the word "shutterbug."

Me with a piece on the Dinosaur Musical. Read it and weep (at how bad I am).

My dude Schwartz has been contemplating a revamp of his Thinking East blog. Some of his ideas include starting up webcasts and/or Illvibe radio casts to offer more content to readers. His (thinking) partner also recently introduced neweurasia, a blog centering on Central Asian issues. In an e-mail exchange, I brought up the fact that although "casts" (no Hindu) are super-hot right now, I'm still a strong proponent of the written word and how I feel that it is superior to broadcast media. Some good points from Schwartz's "professional peception" POV:

Ironically, Blogs are still extremely dependent upon the old Press, in the West and the East. Blogs are constantly *linking* to the news-services; why aren't the news-services linking to us? Is it just the Press' elitism or parochialism, is it that we haven't given the news-services--and the public--anything truly juicy to sink their teeth into?

In the West, the Blogs' great journalistic success--the moment when they produced content, and of an explosive nature--was exposing Jeff Gannon, the president's mole in the White House press corps. Shortly thereafter, there was a big ruckus about Blogs, even cyber-attacks and legislation against them, and then---nothing. For the most part, it seems to me Blogs are still analyzing and critiquing. As I see it, this is the Blogs' greatest obstacle to true journalistic power...

Blogs definitely have some influence within the fourth estate, but I agree with Schwartz in this respect. My basic view is that while blogs can often shake shit up and provide answers (whether it's the Gannon issue, or Matt Drudge, whose shit I consider a precursory form of journalistic blogging), they're still driven by individualized views. While this might hamper the blog generation's true power to administer change, I don't think that the opinion-driven nature of most blogs is a bad thing. Isn't that the purpose they serve in the first place? Blogs can and should exist independently from the print media; while the presence of bias and opinion might undermine credibility, it's still extremely important that we have the means to put our thoughts out there in the first place.

It's been a good couple of weeks for me in terms of renting movies. I've caught some great ones lately, most notably The Devil's Backbone, Lords of Dogtown and Layer Cake. Some quick thoughts about each film:

- Backbone is fucking amazing. Before I knew anything about del Toro, I found it hard to believe that the director of Hellboy could create such a moving piece of cinema. Dude combines themes of civil unrest during the Spanish Civil War with elements of horror and coming-of-age films. It's rare that I decide to buy a movie on DVD immediately after I catch it, but this is at the top of the list. Go rent/buy this shit.

- I thought Dogtown was going to be lame, but I was pleasantly surprised. Great performances from Emile Hirsch and Heath Ledger, who are usually just relegated to boytoy mags and shit. Written by Stacy Peralta too, the OG. I'm no skate historian, but I liked how the rise and fall of the early stars was depicted. Also, here's an IMDB review that directly refutes everything I just said (although I do agree that Emile's depiction of a Latino gangbanger was a bit of a stretch).

- Layer Cake was confusing and convoluted as shit, as are many English caper/gangster flicks (What up, Guy?). Still, the twists, turns and surprises are dope, and I've been a fan of the dude Daniel Craig for awhile now. Michelle also has taken quite a shine to him, which will inevitably lead to him getting punched in the face next time I see him breathe, breathe...I think he'll surprise people when his Bond flick comes out.

I was itching for something to do the other night so I decided to try signing up for AdSense, that evil Google-driven shit that places targeted links on your blog. I progressed pretty far in the sign-up process until I got to a screen asking for my social security number. Are you serious? The day I type my social security number into the Internet is the day that this happens.

Quick links:

Crazy story about what happened to Einstein's brain.

Some great comments on The Roots (and a somewehat scathing PF review) over with Emynd. Also from over there: this beautiful animated gif of Shockey celebrating a field goal too soon. Ha! is not going to cure my obsession with Googling myself, but it's a good first step.

According to this story, all that shit we've thought about tryptophan in turkey causing post Xgiving passouts is bunk. I don't about that. I still passed out hardcore for awhile.

Site takes a sentence you write and plays it back to you with different song samples for each word. Try "I'm trying to fuck the bitches, but the bitches won't fuck me." I think I heard UB40 and Grease in there. Amazing!

There's a town in Austria called "Fucking"? I knew it.

Rest in peace, Pat Morita.


kibby said...

Drew, in a bizarre coincidence (not really that bizarre) Ryan and I also just recently rented The Devil's Backbone and it was awesome!!!! I was pretty sure that I was gonna like it, because I generally like movies involving creepy children, but little did I know that it was going to be a "good" movie by other standards. It's exciting when that happens. However, the next night we watched "Undead" which is supposed to be "one of the most inventive zombie movies ever made!!" or something like that, and it sucked a lot. It had a promising start but then slowly turned into something wierd. I hope you don't plan on watching it cause I'm about to ruin the end. But the zombies were caused by like, acid rain made by aliens. Fuckin aliens. Seriously, it was retarded.

Drew said...

That movie is amazing. I love it. I really wanted Michelle to watch it with me but she was really drunk and passed out about five minutes into it. The next day I tried to rehash the plot for but it's the hardest shit to explain ever, especially if you're terrible at rehashing movies like me. And, let me get "Undead," because that sounds like the best flick ever. Even better than the gay zombie porn.