June 27, 2008

The Weeklies #42

The Weekly Time Waster. Have you discovered Hulu yet? TV shows - not lame ass ones you don't care about like the revival of the Love Boat that tragically appeared in the 90s - that you can watch for absolutely nothing with very limited commercials. It seriously rocks.

The Weekly Horrifying Fact. Vern Troyer - you know, Mini-Me - has a sex tape. Seriously. Please don't even be slightly tempted to Google it and check it out. I was barely able to avoid clawing my own eyes out.

The Weekly Reads. I polished off Richard Hawke's Cold Day In Hell earlier in the week. It's a book I'd really been looking forward to reading based on the strength of his previous novel, Speak of the Devil. Hawke's writing is fantastic. His narration is witty in that Harlan Coben kind of way that doesn't turn a serious story into something silly. His dialog pops and his characters are wonderfully drawn. That said, I was a little disappointed with Cold Day In Hell. It wasn't bad - in fact, it was quite good - but it wasn't quite as good as his first. Would I recommend it? Yep.

The Weekly Music. Last week I reported that I'd given the new Coldplay album a spin and wasn't overly impressed. So I took it upon myself to give it a few extra listens this week. Did my opinion change? Yeah, to an extent. Vida La Vida is eclectic, blending more than a few different styles. It seems to me that it's a piece of music meant to be listened to as a whole. The sum - the way I've interpreted it - is more important than the parts that comprise it. It's lush, brilliantly recorded and mastered - a definite headphone album. But the emotional payoff isn't as immediate as with their previous albums. There are fewer hooks, grooves and anthems and, as a result, less of a pay-off to the listener. Yet there's something about it that stays with you. Something good.

The Weekly Death of an Important Person You Probably Never Heard Of. Kermit Love was a costume designer and while you might have seen his designs in ballets or some relatively classic movies, everyone is familiar with his greatest achievement. He designed Big Bird.

The Weekly Schadenfreude/Open Letter. Dear Amy Winehouse: You are a sad, pathetic, fucked up mess. You've screwed your life up so repeatedly it is beyond reason why anyone should feel any sympathy for you. You had talent. Once. Who knows if you still do. I don't care anymore. Go away. Seriously. Go.

The Weekly Hypothetical Question. If you were able to be transported anywhere (geographic location) for 24 hours, where would you go? What sight in the world would you most want to see?

Posted by Chris at June 27, 2008 6:42 AM

The Northern Lights for me!
Pol x

Posted by: Pol at June 27, 2008 7:54 AM

Iceland...always been fascinated by it and would love to go there.

Posted by: Dee at June 27, 2008 8:02 AM

That is a tough one, as I would LOVE to see Venice, but I would also love to stand on the beaches of the Na Pali coast. Oh and the Maldives. Ack.

As for Winehouse? Sad. Really, really sad. Addiction is just an awful thing. And the Mini-Me tape?? AURGH. I clicked a link that someone had posted on a forum that I belong to. I had NO idea that clip was on the other end if it. Awfulawful. Oy.

Posted by: Jen at June 27, 2008 8:18 AM

I'd go see my nephew - they live five hours away and because of my very pregnant state I haven't been able to go up to meet him and I just want to hold the little guy and tell him how special he is to his Aunt Cass.

Posted by: Cass at June 27, 2008 8:34 AM

The Amy Winehouse thing is just one more car in the trainwreck that she is. While it's hard to say anyone deserves to be sick, she totally brought it on with her stupid actions, so... reaping what she sows, I guess.

I'm not particularly well traveled so I have a huge list of places I want to go and things I want see. Kind of a copout answer but I've barely left the country (I hardly think the Bahamas counts), and there's still a lot stateside I have yet to see. Sigh. Someday, I guess. There's no ONE thing I really want to see - I'd love to see the Eiffel Tower in person, or the Italian countryside, someday I want to see them light the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center, or check out the music scene (okay, not really a "sight" per se) in Austin.

Posted by: sarah at June 27, 2008 8:41 AM

I want to be transported to a villa in Tuscany. I want to be able to view the peaceful, serene, beautiful landscape and not think about this hot and humid weather in Dallas. I think that would be absolutely freakin' great right about now. :o)

Posted by: Elizabeth at June 27, 2008 8:46 AM

"Viva La Vida" (the song) has been stuck in my head for a week. I'm finally going to get to go buy the album today or tomorrow. I think it's pretty great, but not quite as good as "X&Y." Incidentally, I have you to thank (blame?) for my being a Coldplay fan, since it was because of your review that I bought "X&Y" 3 years ago :)

Posted by: Stephanie at June 27, 2008 9:01 AM

Greece. I want to sit on the beach and look up at the hills with their beautiful white houses.

Posted by: Mymilabean at June 27, 2008 9:10 AM

Another great post! I have linked to this one also at The DC Feed.

Posted by: The Editor at June 27, 2008 9:23 AM

I heart Hulu.

I am so glad I never got into Amy Winehouse's music. Tragic.

I would travel to NYC... which is where I'm going after work anyway. ;)

Posted by: Poppy at June 27, 2008 9:29 AM

Since I've never had the opportunity to travel outside of the US, there are thousands of places I'd like to see. But, for a 24 hour stay, I'd have to say the International Space Station. I'd love to have a chance to look down upon the Earth as a whole, and see the sunrise creep up along it.

Posted by: J at June 27, 2008 9:36 AM

It's winter in Australia which means it isn't 100° over there. I want to see the Sydney opera house from a front row seat, the Reef, and all the other neat stuff.

Actually, I'd love a Grand Tour of the Continents - I'd probably skip Antartica.

Beam me up (or, in this case, down), Scotty!!

As for Amy (and all the rest of a long list going back to Billie Holiday and probably before), I'm angry at the waste but I'm mostly sad. I've watched too much alcoholism and addiction in my family, including my own, to be terribly judgmental of anyone else. Some of us recover, some like my daughter don't, and I don't have any answers.

Hope the weekend is wonderful for the 4 of you.

Oh, I didn't respond yesterday but I think you should check out non-allergic cats. They're much lower maintenance than dogs.

Posted by: Ann Adams at June 27, 2008 9:58 AM

Darn it - should be Antarctica.

Posted by: Ann Adams at June 27, 2008 10:01 AM

I have a list of the top 100 things I want to do before I die. (And yes, I made the damn thing BEFORE the bucket list came out.)Ireland tops them all, because I'm Irish. Italy is next. Morocco and Nepal in that order. Lucky me, if I keep working for the surgeon whom I currently work for, I might get to go to India with him next time! Yippee!

And the sad thing about Winehouse, and all those other stars is that its so damn hard to get and stay clean and sober anyway, it's nearly impossible to do so in the public eye.

Posted by: k8 at June 27, 2008 10:12 AM

i usually HATE coldplay..with the exception of Fix You, which i like for some reason...but, i have to admit, i didn't hate the new album. strange.

Posted by: ali at June 27, 2008 10:14 AM

Macchi Picchu. It would be amazing to see and explore that!

Posted by: Kelly M. at June 27, 2008 10:15 AM

Ben Nevis is the highest point in Britain, located in the Scottish highlands. I climbed it once, along time ago, and upon reaching the snow-covered top, saw nothing but clouds and an on-coming storm (mildly disconcerting, I have to admit). So, if I could somehow control the weather as well as the location, I'd go back to the top of that large rock on a clear day, because it's said that on a clear day, you can see not only across the highlands, but all three of the watery coasts of Scotland and into Northern Ireland. That would be something, I think.

Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' at June 27, 2008 10:26 AM

oooh, Australia please. To be able to get there and see all of its beauty without the long airplane ride!

Posted by: diane at June 27, 2008 10:29 AM

To answer the question...

Hefner's place.

Posted by: william at June 27, 2008 10:35 AM

I wonder if the frog was named after him?
I think I really want to go to Pars. A lot.
And for all your talk about midet sex, apparently it's rather scarring eh? ;)

Posted by: Heather at June 27, 2008 10:44 AM

Horrifying Fact: I'm afraid to ask how you discovered that one. [shudder]

Schadenfreude: Yes. Don't let the door hit you on your way out, unless it will hasten your departure.

Question: My snarky answer would be to my bed. I'm so tired I feel like I'm going to pass out. My non-snarky answer is Florence, Venice or Tuscany.

Posted by: Maria at June 27, 2008 10:50 AM

On Amy Winehouse: Now that I found Duffy, Amy can really ago away now.

On the question: My first answer was Tuscany, but then I realize I only 24 hours and that seriously is not enough. For that amount of time, I'd take the pyramids of Giza.

Posted by: oakley at June 27, 2008 11:33 AM

I'd go to the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides up off the northernmost coast of Scotland. It is the epitome of getting away from it all. I would check out the standing stones of Callanish and watch the storm clouds pass. If I close my eyes, I can already hear the seabirds....

Posted by: rebeccaeee at June 27, 2008 11:44 AM

Okay, I'll be the odd person out here on this one, apparently. Why is a 39 yr old man having sex with a woman awful? So he's a "little person". What? He isn't allowed to have a libido because he's less that 3 feet tall?

Verne was in my graduating class of ~90 students in high school. He was a sensitive, popular, well-liked guy with a wicked funny sense of humor. Granted, he's a pop-culture figure and is therefore available for everyone to put weigh in with their 2 cents worth but he's still a man.

Yes, any amateur sex tape is probably pretty squick-worthy, but people aren't watching this because it's a sex tape, per se. They're watching because it's Verne.

*stepping off my soapbox*

Hypothetically speaking: A villa in Italy would be my destination.

Posted by: zanie at June 27, 2008 12:31 PM

Kermit Love died?? He did Snuffleupagus too. Being a musical theater and ballet geek, I know him as the creator of the giant marionette in George Balanchine's production of Don Quixote, and he did puppets for the Nutcracker. Wow, I'm sad now.

Posted by: Judy at June 27, 2008 1:02 PM

I would go to Surf Drive Beach on Cape Cod and spend the day with my two daughters on the beach, in the water and picnicking. The day would be perfect, sunny, warm and the water the perfect temperature. All you would be able to hear is the surf against the sand and rocks. Ahhhhhh. That would be so lovely.

Posted by: Maribeth at June 27, 2008 2:09 PM

I'd like to be transported somewhere that I'd never in a million years make it to under my own power. Like the top of Everest on a gorgeous clear day. Or something. If that's not an option, then my second choice would be a fabulously deserted beach with amazing snorkelling (lots of corals, tons of small, brightly coloured fish and no sharks or other large things to scare me).

Posted by: Carmen at June 27, 2008 2:51 PM

I would go to a remote atoll far far away from civilization. In fact, I want to go there alone.

The lagoon of my atoll would have pretty fish and coral and no computers or cellphones.

But there would also be a mini fridge, and it wuld be fully stocked with wine coolers.

Posted by: jessica at June 27, 2008 3:00 PM

I'd want to go to the town I grew up in, just to see how it lines up with what I remember - it's been almost 20 years.

Thanks (I think) for Hulu. I just spent most of the baby's naptime watching Wyatt Cenac on the Daily Show and looking for old SNL clips. Talk about a time suck. I'm closing the laptop now... and backing away from the computer.

Posted by: sunshine at June 27, 2008 3:49 PM

24 hours...hmm...that is a really short trip...so somewhere freezing cold (Alaska sounds good)since I had to change my clothes once all ready from sweating to death just by bringing in the groceries!

Posted by: steff at June 27, 2008 6:29 PM

You did say 24 hours, right? I'd pick somewhere like Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Romania, Serbia, Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus, Turkey, some place in Africa, central America... somewhere where I'd be afraid to be for more than 24 hours. Everywhere else, I'd like to take my time and enjoy.

Posted by: Laura at June 27, 2008 7:54 PM

I'm sooooo with you on the Vern Troyer thing. Wow. Disturbing barely scratches the surface.

Ditto on the Amy Winehouse thing. How in the world is she, and for that matter, Pete Doherty, still alive?

I want very much to spend my hypothetical 24 hours in the Icehotel in Sweden.... http://www.icehotel.com/Winter/

Posted by: coolchick at June 27, 2008 7:58 PM

Mississauga, Ontario (I Know!!!) when my sister gives birth ... could be any day now ... and I am 3,000 miles away

and I am totally loving the new Cold Play - so much better than X&Y

Posted by: Kathryn at June 27, 2008 11:48 PM

Mississauga, Ontario (I Know!!!) when my sister gives birth ... could be any day now ... and I am 3,000 miles away

and I am totally loving the new Cold Play - so much better than X&Y

Posted by: Kathryn at June 27, 2008 11:48 PM

I'd say Washington DC so that I could apologize in person for not leaving you one stinking comment all week. *hangs head in shame*

Posted by: Mr Lady at June 28, 2008 1:34 AM

My 24 hours...

The romantic little island off the coast of Australia where Hubs and I spent our honeymoon, complete with the fancy restaurant, the romantic villa on the beach, etc.

We certainly wouldn't be scuba diving this time-LOLOL!

On Amy Winehouse....
She's scary. Really. I can't even look at a picture of her without thinking that, much less hear her sing.

Posted by: Scatteredmom at June 28, 2008 1:39 AM

where do you find time to read so much each week? you go through a lot of books!

Posted by: tiffanie at June 28, 2008 3:55 AM

Dude, even my teenage daughter says Amy Winehouse is a train wreck. I do like the new Coldplay album, and if I could be transported anywhere, I would pick Rome or Athens to see the history of things.

Posted by: Jeremy (Discovering Dad) at June 28, 2008 1:58 PM

Ooo, thanks for the Hulu link.

Amy Winehouse? Train wreak doesn't even begin to cover it. More like 10,000 trains crashing into 50 aircraft carriers.

For just 24 hours? I'd go to Greece.

Posted by: Kimberly at June 28, 2008 8:03 PM

I'm another fan of the Northen lights - I'd love to see them just once before I die. I'd love to go way up north in Canada - where they filmed Unterjanat (rats, lousy spelling) The fastest Runner.

Posted by: mamacrow at June 29, 2008 5:17 PM

Tough choice! Today, Iraq, put my arms around my baby brother. In a perfect world, I'd like to go to anyplace on the planet where you can see the curvature of the earth. Which I never thought about being able to do with your feet planted on it until that Range Rover commercial. I think that would be pretty profound.

Posted by: OS at June 29, 2008 9:35 PM

Jack Straw's Castle. Hampstead Heath...London.

Posted by: apathy lounge at June 30, 2008 12:31 AM

Jack Straw's Castle. Hampstead Heath...London.

Posted by: apathy lounge at June 30, 2008 12:32 AM

Jack Straw's Castle. Hampstead Heath...London.

Posted by: apathy lounge at June 30, 2008 12:32 AM

About Coldplay: it always takes a few listens for me to get into their albums. I agree that there aren't as many hooks as previous albums, but I still feel like they're progressing as a band and I like that.
And to answer your question: I saw Jumper last week and even though I thought it was horribly written/acted I did like the idea of having a picnic on the Sphinx so I guess I would want to go there.

Posted by: Amaya at June 30, 2008 6:19 PM