Pop Culture Junkette

Addicted to pop culture.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Random Fact

Hello internets! It's been a while.

So, I just learned that the guy I sit next to in my Spanish class is one of the 50 most beautiful people on the Hill. (He's the one on the motorcycle.) Interesting, huh?

Yes, I'm taking Spanish, and I'm such an obnoxious show-off in class that it's ridiculous. But I can't help myself.

Hasta luego.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Separated at birth

The CW, past and present: Buffy's Sarah Michelle Gellar (okay, I know it wasn't the CW back then, but the show aired on both WB and UPN, so it's close enough), and Privileged's Joanna Garcia.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Thursday Musings

1. The baseball season is reaching its climax with most races decided, but a couple of thoughts. First, I have readily admitted my Yankee fandom, but I am really growing to hate the Red Sox more and more. Their performance on Tuesday night was pure bush league. This is a team that has made the playoffs 5 of the past 6 seasons and, much at it pains me to say it, won 2 of the last 4 World Series. And they have a full throttled celebration for clinching a wild card birth?!? Act like you've been there before . . . because you have. Papelbon is the biggest idiot of the bunch, and annoys me to no end. (I will say that as much as I fear Ortiz, I certainly respect him, and I would love to have Youklis on my team.)

2. In contrast, the Rays, who are about to finish ahead of the Red Sox, showed more restraint in their celebration. This is a team that has never won more than 70 games until this year. They could have had a massive celebration on Saturday night, but instead they have remained focused on winning the AL East ensuring that the Red Sox and Angels meet in the first round while they host the White Sox/Twins winner. Go Rays!

3. Mrs. Bartender and I attended our final Nats game of the season last night. Disappointing year for the Nats--riddled with injuries, they are going to lose 100 games for the first time in franchise history. (That includes the 36 years spent in Montreal.) Attendance at the new stadium was mediocre, but as long as the team improves, the attendance will as well. If, however, nothing happens in the off season, tickets won't be hard to come by next year (except when the Red Sox come to town in June).

4. I ran into Marc Lerner at the game (his family owns the team), and had a nice chat with him. He was very interested to talk particularly once he knew I had been to about 20 games this year. I made a bold suggestion of adding lights to the out of town scoreboard to indicate how many outs there were in other games, and he immediately had someone looking into the possibility. So if this happens next year, you can thank me.

5. Ah, politics. Every day I ask myself, what the hell was John McCain thinking in picking Palin. She is so far out of her depth, it is truly sad. She has neither knowledge nor intellectual curiosity, and while no one seems to want to say it, she just is not very bright. That she cannot, after having weeks of tutoring, be able to answer straightforward questions about the economic crisis our nation faces with anything other than the most basic platitudes is shocking. I certainly do not believe that a first class mind is required to be a great president--indeed, of the 4 most successful 20th century presidents (TR, FDR, Truman, and Reagan), only Teddy Roosevelt was a first class mind. But there are limits, and she is so far from what is required, it is shocking.

6. As for the McCain attempted time out yesterday, did it make any sense? Was his advertising somehow affecting the economy? If anything, it helps as it spends money! And do all of his campaign workers need to devote time to the meltdown (of the economy, not his campaign)? Was it anything more than another desperate gambit and an attempt to prevent Friday's and next Thursday's VP debates? In the end, McCain it seems is going to have to blink and show up in Oxford tomorrow, and the "suspension" of his campaign will be little remembered.

7. Finally, a little pop culture--isn't that what we're supposed to do around here? As I mentioned a while ago, we have been watching the Heroes DVDs. We have 1 episode left from season 2 before the season 3 premiere from Monday night. Season 1 was very good until the last episode; season 2 (and I don't yet know how it ends) sputtered with extraneous heroes that we cared nothing about, stories that dragged on way too long (Hiro in Japan), annoying actors (West and the black tear wonder twins), and characters who constantly act like idiots (see Mohinder). To its credit, the final few episodes were an improvement, but to compare this show to something like Lost is a joke. It's fine but not great television. (I think one friend likes it because it is providing employment to numerous former Star Trek actors. Too bad Bones and Scotty are both dead.)

8. Very excited for The Office but am sad that 30 Rock isn't back for another month. I do need some Michael Scott back in my life.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Bill Clinton and the shaky thumb

Last night Bill Clinton was a guest on the Daily Show. It was pretty great, but I noticed Clinton's thumb shaking, seemingly uncontrollably, throughout his first segment on the show. When he came back after the commercial break his hand was off-camera, so there were no more sightings of the shaky thumb.

I was curious about what might be wrong, so I did an Google search for "Clinton shaking thumb" and "Clinton shaky thumb," but alas, all I found were articles about Bill giving a thumbs up, or Bill shaking hands with others.

Am I the only one who noticed this? Does anyone know if there's a problem?


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Attention, CNN: Don't Criticize What You Can't Understand

Okay, we've been way too quiet for a while, and I just wanted to put up a short post on the CNN created controversy of the day. (With the economy tanking, this is thankfully getting little play.) CNN.com has a link up to a discussion about what it calls Saturday Night Live's "Palin Incest Spoof." If, however, they actually watched the entire skit, CNN would understand that the point of it was not to attack Palin but to mock the New York Times and the mainstream media for knowing nothing about Alaska and being willing to say anything about Palin. Heck, Kathryn Jean Lopez, a crazy right winger at National Review Online, liked the skit, writing that Al Franken, who contributed to the opening skit attacking McCain, "has my apologies if he had anything to do with the New York Times skit." She got the joke (such as it was), and CNN didn't.

The biggest problem with the skit (and with the opening skit about McCain for that matter) was that they weren't very funny. Neither of them. I may have more sympathy with the skit that opened the show on a political level, but it wasn't that good and neither was the one attempting to skewer the Times. In fact, the only very good SNL skit in the first two episodes has been the Tina Fey as Palin skit.


Thursday, September 11, 2008


You know what makes me sad? The fact that this blog is so inactive. We have had only two posts this month (both by Isaac, mine will be the third). Last month we had six total posts, with Isaac drafting four, and Holt and me drafting the other two. Bailey hasn't posted since June and Wilder hasn't posted since December 2007. I have barely been writing. Very sad.

I have seen posts like this on other blogs. The blogger then says that s/he misses blogging and will be better about keeping up with the blog. It's the kiss of death--the blogger rarely returns, and the blog eventually dies.

So I won't say that I'm going to be better. But I will share some thoughts:

1. I hate the Republicans. I can't even talk about the extreme hypocrisy and utter ridiculousness of their tactics (and the frustrating that they seem to be working). It consumes my thoughts way too often.

2. I'm watching Runway right now, and in anything between Kinley and Liane, I'm on Team Liane. I really like her best, but Korto is growing on me. Gobo is really fond of Kinley. He agrees with me that Liane is the best designer of the bunch, but he just has a warm spot in his heart for Kinley.

3. We watched the entire first season of Mad Men over the past month, and are catching up on Season 2. Gobo calls Peggy "Kinley."

4. Also on the Runway topic, I really hate it when Suede talks about himself in the third person. Who does that? Oh! And Heidi just said "...two of you, will be out." She's never said that before.

5. I started watching Big Brother again this summer. I'm pathetic. Luckily, there wasn't all this talk about god and evildoers like last season.

6. In addition to Mad Men, Gobo and I watched season 1 of both How I Met Your Mother and Burn Notice. We're about to start season two of both of those shows.

7. Fall television is starting. I'm really excited to see Pushing Daisies and the Amazing Race again, and I'm sad that I have to wait so long for Friday Night Lights. If I didn't have such an aversion to talking to customer service reps and waiting during a four hour window in the middle of a workday for technicians to install things, I would probably just sign up for DirecTv.

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

JMac's Spread

So, first, the important thing: Giants 16, Redskins 7. After watching that impressive performance, I turn to McCain's speech. He had his moments, he handled the idiot protesters well, but it was a fairly disjointed speech and leaves him wide open to the point that he and the GOP offer little in the way of policy. (They do like to distort Obama's plan, however.)
More importantly, the opening visual struck me. After McCain got slaughtered for his ridiculous performance the night Obama clinched the nomination and, in particular,his standing in front of a green backdrop, it happened again. Now here it was grass, and when the full visual was revealed, it led to Mrs. Bartender's line of the night: "Is that one of his houses?" That's all for now.
Update: As was subsequently reported, the picture was of Walter Reed Junior High School in Los Angeles. It seems a staffer meant to put up a picture of Walter Reed Hospital in Washington but screwed up. Heckuva job!

Thought of the Day

As the GOP has completely descended into an angry, bash Washington, bash the press, bash elitism party, I have to ask myself if John McCain regrets the path he took. Senator McCain, at his best, is a proud member of the Washington elite, someone with great relations with the press ("my base," as he has rightly joked), who has cared about some aspects of governing, and has left the culture and class wars to others (or, as was the case in 2000, was its victim).

Yet over the past year, he has had to reverse his position on god knows how many issues (the Bush tax cuts, the estate tax, the environment, offshore drilling, immigration, etc.), and he has now been forced to pick as his running mate someone who has not shown the slightest bit of interest in what McCain clearly (and perhaps rightly) believes is the most important issue this nation faces, the war(s) in which it is currently engaged and the threats it faces from terrorism and, in a very different way, the Russians. Yes, the base loves her, and maybe the Hail Mary will work, but this is not John McCain; picking Joe Lieberman or Tom Ridge wuld have been. The result is--in a way the Obama campaign perhaps never realized--the third campaign of George W. Bush.

And so I wonder if John McCain ever asks himself if he should have said yes to John Kerry 4 years ago. I believe had he done so, he would currently be the VP of the United States. (He would have been a much more effective VP candidate than John Edwards--I have never been a fan of his even well before the latest misadventure.) And the nation would have had a type of bipartisan leadership that McCain, at his best, was the epitome of. Now, that is gone, perhaps for good.

Thankfully, Obama has in many ways taken over the mantle of this type of leadership. Yes, he's well to the left of McCain, but his instincts are for consensus and moderation. Not just with the safe selection of Joe Biden, but there is no doubt that certain Republicans will be very influential in an Obama administration--Chuck Hagel, Richard Lugar, Colin Powell, and Robert Gates all come to mind. Heck, had he lost the GOP nomination, John McCain would have too (and may try to reinvent himself during an Obama administration).

That being said, the election is certainly not over; however, even with the media's ridiculous overreaction to Palin's speech in the past 18 hours thanks to the attacks on the media from the McCain campaign--this election is becoming more and more Obama's to lose. The fundamentals all support him, he shored up his support in the party last week, and his message and Joe Biden are much more suited to the voters in the middle than the GOP's and Sarah Palin's. And if I'm right and McCain loses, hopefully he'll manage to keep some of the dignity that had made him so popular with those his party not only derides but it has basically made such derision its sole raison d'etre. (And yes, by using this French phrase--French, egad!--I am certainly one that would be at the center of their attacks. I am one of those cosmopolitans, that the former mayor of New York City derides.)