Category Archives: Not-Music

Scandal Hookups Are Ridiculous

Every relationship on Scandal is ridiculous. Each is steeped in either forgiveness or expediency. The ideas of revenge or happiness or even what’s actually at stake are ignored. 

It makes the show too stupid for even a guilty pleasure. It all makes the show a farce because what fails is the idea of a love so strong to make all the anguish worthwhile. Instead it’s lust and that can be found and extinguished almost anywhere. 

So the first lady just hooked up with Andrew, the Vice President to be. I turned it off last episode when they were laughing together and clearly getting buzzed. I hoped it would be a one time drunken fling but now they’ve just been caught giving and receiving a blowjob by Millie’s daughter.

It’s called Scandal so obviously much of this should be expected. At some point, however, all this guided-by-the-loins crosses the line into soap opera territory. 

When that happens you stop caring about anyone. 

So Olivia and the president – stupid, too much at stake. They keep saying love but it’s just not. Even the Vermont house just screams showing off rather than a true desire for a future. 

Name any couple (ing). There should be more hate and loathing but instead there’s just passive acceptance.

I was moved to watch the show while listening to the West Wing Weekly podcast. It’s co-hosted by Joshua Molina who joined West Wing in Season 4. And he joined Scandal in Season 1 and struggles to maintain his white hat status throughout. 

Why Transformation Seems So Appealing

(I invited someone else here to write about what I always thought was a cool program. Say hello to Eliza Stone who was just really enthused about this show she’s followed for awhile and what it meant about “shedding your skin” and new starts.)

By Eliza Stone

If you were to watch Face Off, you’d notice a few minor format changes over the years. Judges have come and gone, and the grand prize vehicle has become progressively higher end, going from a Toyota Camry Hybrid at season two’s ending to a mouthwatering Fiat 500 at the close of season four.

One thing has remained constant: This show is like no other on television. Yes, it’s essentially a makeup/makeover show, but the freaky sci-fi and prosthetic special effects dynamic makes Face Off a transformation show of a whole other sort. Still, the seed of this show’s appeal is the fact it concerns transformations — otherworldly and bizarre and the better for their absurdity and originality.

The show’s host and judges are all industry experts with tons of collective experience in prostheses and freakish makeup. The contestants are also highly skilled, each with his/her own strengths and weaknesses.

Getting a ringside seat to the behind-the-scenes aspect of movie makeup and prostheses simultaneously demystifies the process while arousing more questions with each new layer peeled back or put on. This is abundantly clear when you watch Face Off online.

For the viewer, watching people and things transform so dramatically and so quickly is another part of the fascination. The theme of transformation, whether embryo to newborn, man to werewolf, ugly duckling to swan, or poor geek girl to rich hot actress, is a compelling theme woven into nearly every part of Western and Eastern culture.

Indeed, the popularity of transformation via surgery is on the rise. According to an infographic posted on the website of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, cosmetic procedures were up by 5% last year, totaling $14.6 million. Streamlined noses, Barbie silhouettes, and perfectly straight and white teeth are becoming the new (desired) norm.

But there are everyday transformations that are equally compelling: Each night we go to bed, surrendering to the transformational power of sleep. We go to the salon and to the mall, hoping to find new inspiration for the changes we’d like to manifest in our lives. We closely follow the various transformations of our favorite celebrities, marking their weight loss, their new haircuts, or their successful graduation from rehab.

R. Buckminster Fuller once said, “There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it’s going to be a butterfly.” Fuller, an inventor, designer and theorist, was well aware of the mechanics and inner workings of objects, energy and concepts. The hope of betterment and transcendence a caterpillar represents might have seemed to Fuller a metaphor for all the unlocked potential hidden within each atom, indeed within us all.

Also, that the butterfly resembles no part of its previous incarnation suggests that evolution and material/spiritual rebirth have nothing to do with fancy beginnings. It is the undertaking of any transformation that unleashes individual agency into the world, the mark of authentic power and, ultimately, sublime beauty.

Perhaps this is why so many people are fascinated by transformation, both as an idea and as the premise for a reality show competition? To watch Face Off online allows us to witness how profound it is to create a wholly new outward, and inward, reality. Each week, contestants do more than merely create grotesque makeup effects, they are also inadvertently creating new professional avenues for themselves.

Just competing on the show gives contestants tons of exposure. Winning is more than the sweet $100 grand; it grants the winner entree into the world of pro makeup artists. The networking and financial opportunities are quite respectable. More than faces, contestants transform their lives and careers, making Face Off a riveting, quintessential example of transformation.

Sometimes E-mails Help

Like today:

Read each one carefully and think about it a second or two:

1. No man or woman is worth your tears, and the one who is, won’t make you cry.

2. Just because someone doesn’t love you the way you want them to, doesn’t mean they don’t love you with all they have.

3. A true friend is someone who reaches for your hand and touches your heart.

4. The worst way to miss someone is to be sitting right beside them knowing you can’t have them.

5. Never frown, even when you are sad, because you never know who is falling in love with your smile.

6. To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.

7. Don’t waste your time on a man/woman, who isn’t willing to waste their time on you.

8. Maybe God wants us to meet a few wrong people before meeting the right one, so that when we finally meet the person, we will know how to be grateful.

9. Don’t cry because it is over, smile because it happened.

10. There’s always going to be people that hurt you so what you have to do is keep on trusting and just be more careful about who you trust next time around.

11. Make yourself a better person and know who you are before you try and know someone else and expect them to know you.

12. Don’t try so hard, the best things come when you least expect them to.

DNA Shoah Project – Was Reminded

I’ve heard of theDNA Shoah Project but was reminded of it today.

Posting here mainly to remember again later.

Sonics Gate Documentary Watch Here

Sonics Gate is a film that tells the story of how Washington and Seattle government took a hard decision in the face of getting boldface lied to by the new owners of the Seattle Sonics.

Clay Bennett, an Oklahoma businessman, bought the Seattle Supersonics NBA basketball team in 2006 and he pretended to want to engage the city and state governments in a sincere effort to want to stay in Seattle. But he made it fairly clear through his demands that he wanted no such thing.

Subsequent statements revealed through good journalism made his intentions more than clear his intentions. Those statements revealed truth.

I’ll know more about Sonics Gate the film when I watch it. I found out about it through Twitter/SonicsGate a few months ago but have never watched it. The group, Seattle Supersonics Historical Preservation Society helped bring the documentary to life.

WATCH WATCH WATCH

Sonicsgate SD Full Version from sonicsgate on Vimeo.

Conan The Integritarian

I haven’t had a TV for about two years. I used to watch the Conan O’ Brien show in its original time slot after The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, which I never watched.

In fact, I almost watched T-COBS from the beginning. I have the fifth year anniversary show recorded on VCR. It personified off-the-wall in a corporate setting. Controlled chaos. It was original. When I watched it every now and then it was crazy, it was a mind warp that you had to adjust to to get back into it. It was the anti-Leno.

And today, faced with the idea that NBC will move Jay Leno back to the Tonight Show time slot (but not IN the Tonight Show) Conan says thanks for paying me, but you’re kinda fucking up right now and I don’t want to be a part of it.

Or in his words:

People of Earth:

In the last few days, I’ve been getting a lot of sympathy calls, and I want to start by making it clear that no one should waste a second feeling sorry for me. For 17 years, I’ve been getting paid to do what I love most and, in a world with real problems, I’ve been absurdly lucky. That said, I’ve been suddenly put in a very public predicament and my bosses are demanding an immediate decision.

Six years ago, I signed a contract with NBC to take over The Tonight Show in June of 2009. Like a lot of us, I grew up watching Johnny Carson every night and the chance to one day sit in that chair has meant everything to me. I worked long and hard to get that opportunity, passed up far more lucrative offers, and since 2004 I have spent literally hundreds of hours thinking of ways to extend the franchise long into the future. It was my mistaken belief that, like my predecessor, I would have the benefit of some time and, just as important, some degree of ratings support from the prime-time schedule. Building a lasting audience at 11:30 is impossible without both.

But sadly, we were never given that chance. After only seven months, with my Tonight Show in its infancy, NBC has decided to react to their terrible difficulties in prime-time by making a change in their long-established late night schedule.

Last Thursday, NBC executives told me they intended to move the Tonight Show to 12:05 to accommodate the Jay Leno Show at 11:35. For 60 years the Tonight Show has aired immediately following the late local news. I sincerely believe that delaying the Tonight Show into the next day to accommodate another comedy program will seriously damage what I consider to be the greatest franchise in the history of broadcasting. The Tonight Show at 12:05 simply isn’t the Tonight Show. Also, if I accept this move I will be knocking the Late Night show, which I inherited from David Letterman and passed on to Jimmy Fallon, out of its long-held time slot. That would hurt the other NBC franchise that I love, and it would be unfair to Jimmy.

So it has come to this: I cannot express in words how much I enjoy hosting this program and what an enormous personal disappointment it is for me to consider losing it. My staff and I have worked unbelievably hard and we are very proud of our contribution to the legacy of The Tonight Show. But I cannot participate in what I honestly believe is its destruction. Some people will make the argument that with DVRs and the Internet a time slot doesn’t matter. But with the Tonight Show, I believe nothing could matter more.

There has been speculation about my going to another network but, to set the record straight, I currently have no other offer and honestly have no idea what happens next. My hope is that NBC and I can resolve this quickly so that my staff, crew, and I can do a show we can be proud of, for a company that values our work.

Have a great day and, for the record, I am truly sorry about my hair; it’s always been that way.

Yours,

Conan