I need to continue to do this. I miss writing stuff down. So here’s a random collection of stuff pissing me off this morning.
People on FB whining about political stuff.
Hey, here’s a little tip – every 2 years pretty much excluding some local stuff – we have an election. Every four we do a big one with the President of the United States. It is part of oh…democracy and our republican system of governance. Grow up and toughen up and vote for your guy / girl / transgender / cow / whatever. Or don’t but STFU with your whining about the system. Ads including ones like the South Park ‘hating children’ one in the Starbucks Episode are part of the norm.
A helpful tip for new parents out there.
Hey congratulations, you survived one of the most harrowing, difficult experiences you will.. oh wait, never mind. You’re just at the beginning of it. Oh and you are not the first to suffer through a sucky delivery, nor will you be the last and hey guess what, you’re not the first at well anything remotely involving the many billions of us who are or were parents. Yeah, i know but YOUR kid is different, because he insert verb here ________ earlier than 99% of kids, or is _______ bigger than normal, drinks ___________ more ounces of food or ___________ insert whatever awesome thing your kid does here. Everyone else who has already gone through the spit ups, the long nights, the shots, the skinned knees, the sicknesses, the general kid raising already KNOWS what you don’t. It’s different and yet somehow the same for almost every kid.
Hollywood – still not learning it’s lesson.
Well, well. The worst BO for a summer since 1991. I read a blogger who is a fan of Batman was upset because he realized 12-15 million people more actually saw Tim Burton’s Batman than The Dark Knight. People who continue to be shocked when THE summer movie disappoints. It’s all in front of you. When you turn back on the filters and stop making endless reboots of comic book crap, endless sequels of movies that were barely successful and movies based on TV shows that my dad and grandfather watched and no one alive today knows wtf you’re talking about – then and only then you’ll get it.
Wow, I missed writing some shit down. I have been sick busy lately and it sucks when you can’t get stuff out there; but it’s good to be somewhat back.
Not like anyone was missing me, but I just spent last week on vacation. It was to one of my favorite places on earth – Walt Disney World. In general, Disney goes against everything that is me yet I love it dearly and all the energy it brings with. That being said – I have some observations that I wanted to share from the adventure.
I love to watch human behavior in action on a live stage and I highly doubt Roy or Walt Disney ever imagined that their dream would be quite like it is today. It’s more than the kids (and adults) dicking around with their phones every time they’re not stimulated. It’s more than watching a kid actually cut in front of three other people to get to the crapper and the dad who had a meltdown over it. It’s bigger than the Argentinian guy that simply couldn’t grasp that Heineken doesn’t come with the pizza. It’s really a one way mirror observing our society at a point in time. How people eat, how they react to instructions, and how they behave when they don’t realize people are watching is both awesome and scary.
Yep asshole, they’re talking to YOU
One of the things you hear on the instructions for many rides (besides no flash photography and keep your hands inside the car) is when the attendant asks everyone to keep moving forward and fill in all available space. Particularly for the movie type rides where they pre-fill the first theater. Listen, I know – you’re special and you’re too busy playing wordboggle on your phone to think that you’re the one the lady on the mic is talking to. WRONG. Stop fucking around and shake your ass up there. When they tell you to stow your fucking phone, do it. Yes you. Same for you Mr.Havetostopandshootthispicture (which will be dark and blurry).
Nuclear asshole doesn’t have to be your first option when responding to a problem
It was disappointing to see a Disney employee actually be impressed with me when I didn’t have a raving bitchcakes rant which they’re obviously conditioned to expect at this point. Especially at Disney (though less so at Universal) the folks there are super trained to help you get where you’re going and honor as many requests as possible within reason. I heard numerous examples of this from special menu requests to how they handle handicapped people. So, why sir do you have to go to 11 right from the start? On my example: yes, the service was slow for us at one restaurant. Could I have been doing something else? Yeah. Did they do their best, maybe..the girl was from Scotland and was in training – so I sucked it up and we used some patience. We ended up getting a free front row seat to the fireworks show for it. Would anything have been helped by me going ultra-douche? No. Not to mention that I don’t ever treat food industry folks poorly. Ever. We’re all trying to make memories on a trip like this and while you may get reinforced acting like a 39 year old child on your wedding day at the end of it you’re still a fucking douche.
These parks are loaded with kids, excited kids who are surrounded by almost continuous stimuli. So mommy are you really surprised they don’t want to take a nap? Are you truly shocked that a 2 year old who has numerous meltdowns at home, at the restaurant, at the mall has one here after getting loaded up on fun food and rides. In general, this goes to my general commentary on parents who believe much like teenagers that everyone is looking them. Here’s some important news for you parents: we don’t care. We do think it would be nice if you’d take the kid out of the theater/restaurant/etc but especially those of us who have kids; we’ve all been here. You don’t need to be embarrassed, you don’t need to give in to them, just ride it out. One side note, kids who are 75 lbs and 12 years old DO NOT NEED A FUCKING STROLLER NOR DO THEY NEED BREAST MILK.
Ride the Bus
Besides my amazement at the complexity of the WDW transportation system; I continue to be impressed that people are as nice as they are when we’re on the bus back to the resort. People routinely give up seats to people of need, no one complains when the guy has to get the scooter granny locked in, no one bitches when we’re packed in like sardines. It’s crazy. Especially because these are the same people I watch in the parks during the day.
Three’s a crowd
This is mostly a note to Universal Studios; but also to some extent to Disney. Magic Kingdom is the original park and I STILL don’t understand why it seems to have the best crowd management of all the parks. The Harry Potter area of Islands of Adventure at Universal is fantastic; the detail is meticulous, stays true to the films / books and the ride was awesome. However, what I couldn’t and still don’t understand is how the hell you design it not knowing that it was going to be that packed based on that shape. I waited 15 minutes to get into a store. The butterbeer stands were awful. How could you not have one person serving and one person taking cash? That’s like concession stand 101? Then, in the middle of a horde of people, you put on a concert thing stuck in the middle of two butterbeer stands both with 45 minute waits, the entrance to Olivanders and two rides. Who the hell thought of that? The whole area should have been designed with the very best flow ever and I can’t imagine how anything isn’t designed with that as a major factor. Maybe it is, but if so? We’d never have known. It was a 150 minute wait to get on the Potter ride when we walked off the bus and we walked straight to it at park open and still had to wait 60 minutes.
There oughta be a law
I don’t blame the poor folks at the parks; because clearly someone was abusing this benefit, so much so that they had to make a rule that only 6 people can go on a ride with a person in a wheelchair. Is that not fucking sick? Because they get ‘cuts’ it’s reasonable to assume that people were putting questionable people in a chair / scooter just to get on rides sooner. I hope there’s a section in hell for you. Warming up.
There are a number of things we as individuals convince ourselves of in order to maintain some level of hope / future outlook. The problem is that we’re almost always wrong about most of them. I would have fought back against Hitler/Mao/Stalin etc. or no way would I have been a part of _______. I went a little more practical here – but these are things nearly everyone tells themselves regularly even when they are dead wrong.
6) Yeah, but I go off the beaten track when I travel
No. You probably don’t. The vast majority of people who travel go for the “standard” experience. I used to lead travel groups and the overwhelming majority of the people who went with me, basically wanted US amenities, just somewhere else. You aren’t seeing the “real” version of where ever you are – sorry. And I should point out, there’s nothing wrong with that. You don’t have to live with French people to see France and have done something that most people will never do but chances are you’re not the one guy who’s doing the Anthony Bourdain version – sorry.
5) I’m not the one driving like a dick
Uh yeah, you probably are. Everyone thinks they are the one not at fault in driving issues – the truth is at one time or another EVERYONE is the dick in a given incident. It could be legitimately, it was an innocent mistake but you probably pissed off one or more people maybe to the point of flipping you off or screaming at you because you startled them.
4) MY fucking off at work is ok because, well I have earned it
There’s certainly nothing wrong with a quick bitch session, the extra long lunch, or the occasional early exit. We are adults and not school kids that need constant shepherding and structure. That said, just do it and don’t try to convince me, your coworkers or your boss that you have some kind of free pass because the company is screwing you or you worked extra hard or whatever. We all do. Just be a grown up and stop this lie to yourself because you feel guilty sneaking out that one day for a round of golf.
3) But MY kid is different
No. He’s not. He’s not special. He’s a kid and all of them are built hard wired to test everyone and everything including institutions, rules and you. He’s just another kid who needs to be shown right / wrong / good / bad and that he’s just one of all of us. The more you keep filling him with that bullshit, the harder he’ll be to deal with down the road. Which brings me to..
2) I AM special
No, you’re really not. You’re just another one of us on this spinny ball. You don’t deserve special treatment. Many have gone before you and many will come after. Unfortunately, this has manifested itself as a society where everyone thinks they should be CEO/Doctor/Lawyer/Pro Athlete/Actor/Rock Star. You aren’t one. You can’t be one. You’re NOT special and you should be happy with that. And even when you are one of these, you’re still not that special. You just happen to be really good at one or maybe two things.
1) Yeah, well if I had that kind of money, I’d be happy too
No, you most likely wouldn’t. Money almost certainly can make a few problems go away – at the low end of the scale. The difference between eating and not eating can be easily solved with money. The problem comes in where you think that just a little more will solve that next problem or if I just had one of ______ , I’d never be unhappy. Bullshit. What you’ve left out of the equation is that human nature isn’t based around contentment and long term satisfaction. If you could be dating super hot chick ______ you’d never ever look at another chick again, well at least until.. Read a book about lottery winners. How many of them are no happier than before they won and some are much worse? Money usually magnifies your existing personality. If you were a dick before you had a million bucks you think you’re going to be less of one after? No way. You’ll just be a dick with a Mercedes and bigger house probably cutting me off and believing I was the asshole.
I am still having all kinds of trouble writing shit at the moment. With three movies in the pipe and tons of fun stuff on the horizon, I am simply making myself write some shit down. So there’s that. On with the show.
I don’t watch a lot of TV and I’ll never completely understand how some shows get on the air at all, get so many viewers or stay on the air especially when they’re carbon copies of other shows. I don’t like Law and Order or its 15 clones (CSI, NCIS, SVU, DM, BLAH). I hate medical/legal dramas – i don’t understand their appeal and never will. I can’t stand “reality” garbage and with action shows 24 and Chuck (still half comedy) now gone; everything I have left is a comedy. Also, I apparently didn’t notice that most of these are also animated.That must have happened while I was sleeping.
So with respect to The IT Crowd, Penn and Teller:Bullshit and a few others that are apparently no longer going to be on appointment tv, here’s my current’s:
6) Phineas and Ferb – (Disney Channel, Animated)
One of those shows that seems like a kids show on the surface but has a lot of subtle references from my youth along with a fantastic song in every episode. It’s goofy and often childish but it’s very, very well done both for kids and adults.
Essential episode: The Tri-State Area Meatloaf Contest with the Meatloaf song done in the style of Oasis.
5) The Big Bang Theory (CBS, Comedy)
Yes, yes I know – CBS isn’t well thought of on the intelligent comedy scale and even this is pretty formulaic, but in general – it has likable characters and generally reasonable plots related to all things nerd. Most of the jokes are fish out of water for Sheldon and or Penny, but they do a good job keeping the group tight and still enjoyable.
Essential Episode: The Adhesive Duck Deficiency
4) South Park – (Comedy Central, Animated)
This has moved down a couple of slots as Trey and Matt seem to forget about it every so often; but when it hits, it hits hard. They approach subjects like no one else on TV (I give the shake weight and take the wife to a musical episodes as recent examples). It’s still raunchy and usually has good subject matter but needs to re-focus on the guys. Even still I love it.
Essential Episode: The Death Camp of Tolerance
3) The Venture Brothers (Cartoon Network, Animated)
This would be at least one notch higher if Publick and Hammer didn’t keep f’in with my emotions with huge layovers and stealth production schedules. The Venture Brothers is everything a show can be. It’s violent, it’s hilarious, has great characters and has great stories. Now if they could just get the damned thing on TV on a regular basis.
Essential Episode: Escape to the House of Mummies Part II
2) Archer (FX, Animated)
A relatively new entry but has definitely shot to the top. Archer is the greasy, nasty, undertaint of the world of the ultrasuave James Bond movies. This show has fantastic voice actors and excellent stories. Every week something catches me by surprise on it and the setups are golden. Nearly every character has a backstory you want to see.
Essential Episode: Skorpio
1) Community (NBC, Comedy)
None of the other shows on this list gets me to watch on actual appointment TV except this one. It is a shame that NBC doesn’t know or care what they have with it (as they have with other brilliant shows in the past without naming names). The writing is brilliant, the acting is fantastic – every one of the people in this will go on to other movies or shows if they already aren’t. Some episodes are outlandish (Modern Warfare, Conspiracy Theories) some are good straight comedy (Debate, Communication Studies) and all of them are good. The chemistry with the cast is perfect (as was with other shows that will remain nameless). It seems to be a tradition at NBC to take brilliant shows which shall remain nameless and hide them on bad nights/times or outright cancel them when they don’t know how to promote them. What NBC should do is get it’s head out of its ass and stop bombarding us with crap like Whitney and Harry’s Law and start promoting the actual gems they have like Community ASAP.
Essential Episode: Dungeons and Dragons
Been too long since I have been able to get a post up here. With all the hubbub of Cloaca going on for the last 5 months, I can barely fit in work and sleep, but I couldn’t let this go. There’s an old sports metaphor that describes the title of this post and I think it pretty clearly applies to the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and what has happened particularly over the last 9-10 months. When my mother calls me to complain about him, I know he’s lost the clubhouse.
His lack of leadership ability, inflexible ideology and a simple inability to comprehend the way this country has functioned for most of the 200+ years where he hasn’t been in office make him the most incompetent man to ever hold said office; surpassing even the incomparable Jimmy Peanut who even at 8 years old I knew was a complete tool. He picked a superbly incompetent ass in Joseph Biden as V.P. rounding out a superb black hole of suck, the likes of which I hope our country never sees again in my lifetime.
So to my fellow General Managers of the American Team – it’s time we man up and admit that the coach has lost the locker room and that it’s time to move on with a new coach. The talent is here, the facilities are pretty good, but we gotta make some changes.
Howdy folks, it’s time for another episode of Shocking Events. The United States’ AAA bond rating was downgraded by S & P last Friday in a move that tens of millions of people have been expecting and yet somehow defies the experts. Every person my age or around it and generally younger knows that we’ve been spending money at unsustainable rates on programs that simply mathematically can’t be maintained at their current levels and on things we simply can’t afford all while constricting the growth engine of the country.
Now, I’m no mathematician like Vice President Joe Biden; but all of that stuff above equals we’re the family who bought a 500,000 house, two BMW X5’s and travel every month on credit – at some point we were going to be told um, yeah..we’re um kind of needing some of that money back.