Friday, May 28, 2010

Lost In Translation



So, I work with this Asian Girl.

She’s very nice. Always pleasant. She speaks with a Chinese accent and I always knew that she wasn’t born in the U.S.

Her name is Pam Yu. At least that’s what she always called herself. I had always thought that, since she was born in China, having the first name “Pam” was passing strange, so I finally asked her about it.

“Oh no”, she told me. “Pam isn’t my real name. I just started calling myself that because I didn’t want to use my actual, Chinese, name.”

I understood that. I’ve known many people, born in other countries, who have names difficult to pronounce for us Westerners. I’ve worked with a Rajasuri who called herself “Raj”. I’ve worked with a JINGHUA who called herself “June”. You get the point.

I explained this to her, and she quickly shook her head, looking uncomfortable.

When I asked her what was wrong, she explained to me that I didn’t quite understand why she had to change her first name when she moved to America.

I asked her to explain it to me, but she was very hesitant. Quite honestly, she looked embarrassed.

For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what her issue could be. She looked around to see if anyone else was within view, before handing me her driver’s license.

“When I moved here, I used my real name for about 6 months before I finally had to ask someone why people were constantly laughing at me whenever I introduced myself.”

Perplexed, I looked down at her license, and it took me a minute to phonetically read her name before I got it:

The poor girl standing before me was from that moment, and forever more, never to be thought of by me as “Pam Yu”.

Try as I might, I can only now think of her by her birth name:

Phuk Yu.

That’s right.

“Fuck You”.

I think I’d call myself Pam, too.

Speechless, I just handed her back her license, told her that I understood, and went on my way.

I should have asked how her sister “Blow Me” is doing……

Monday, May 24, 2010

Get Lost

I’m finally starting to come down from my “Final Episode Ever of Lost” high.

I really can’t believe that my favorite TV show of the past 6 years is officially no more.

The internet has been all abuzz today talking up last night’s 2 ½ hour finale.

So, what did I think of it? Let’s see.

(Be warned. If you haven’t watched it yet, but plan to, you should probably just go away now)

Overall, I liked it quite a bit. Honestly, I love these characters so much that any time I get ANY exposure to them, even when the episode is not at its best, is a good day. Quite simply, LOST boasted the best written characters on TV, and I am going to miss the Hell out of them.

There were things about the Lost finale that I loved, and things that I hated, but the one thing that REALLY peeves me is all the asshats squawking this morning on the interwebs about how they hated the finale because “They left so many questions unanswered”.

Waaa, waaa, waaa.

The people who are complaining about that just never got the point of the show in the first place.

Contrary to what many may think, this show was NEVER about providing answers to a big mystery (unlike the X-Files, which WAS a show about providing answers. In the end, X-Files didn’t answer ANY of its questions, which is why I think THAT finale failed miserably.)

But for Lost, it was never about getting answers. It was about the journey that each of these flawed characters were taking, as each of them tried to find something in each of their lives which would give them personal healing and closure.

And like it or not, THAT is exactly what we got last night.

I could rant about the little things that bothered me, like the fact that we now know that when Juliette detonated the bomb last season, she did not create an alternate timeline as we were led to believe all year. The bomb, in the end, did nothing.

I could rant about the whole Purgatory thing, since as far back as season 1, everyone associated with the show swore up and down in interviews that they were NOT in purgatory and the concept of them all being dead would NEVER be how things wrapped up. Technically, that was true, but not really. It’s like escaping the lie using a lawyer’s loophole.

Hell, I could even rant about how we never even learned what the island WAS, anyway. I think we deserved to know THAT much.

But in the end, I can’t hold any of those things against them.

Last night, we got to see these people who we have come to know and love for 6 years, do battle one last time to try to escape that island. Some made it, but most died trying. And in the end, we learned that somewhere, at the end of time, each of these characters finally became whole, and in death, found each other again, and true happiness.

I just can’t shit all over an ending like that. We never learned all the answers to the questions we’ve had all these years, but we got to see resolutions, REAL resolutions, to each of these characters that we have come to know so well.

I can’t ask for more from an ending than that.

I am going to miss the HELL out of those people.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Surviving Survivor

If you’ve come here for any length of time, you know that I have an obsession with the reality TV show Survivor.

A few years ago, I would put up a blog post every week giving my thoughts on each episode. Most of you thought that those posts sucked balls, seeing how almost none of you watched it with me.

Never one to not give the people what they DON’T want, I stopped writing about Survivor.

But, I never stopped watching.

This past Sunday ended with what was, without question, the best season of Survivor yet. It was SO damn good, that I have been busting at the seams all season, desperately wanting to discuss it.

After watching the finale this weekend, I … finally…. can’t…… contain…. myself… any… longer……

HOLY SHIT DID THIS SEASON ROCK OR WHAT?????????????????????????????????

I’m not going to go into a recap of the season, since you have either watched it along with me and know it all already, or you didn’t watch it or could care less, but this current season, which pitted 10 past all-star Survivors who played in the past as noble “heroes” and pitted them against 10 past players who played as ruthless “villains” was captivating television.

Also without question, was just how much fun it was to watch Russell (pictured above) outplay, connive, threaten, and backstab his way to his second consecutive final tribal council. He truly is the epitome of someone you just LOVE to hate, and easily the star of this season.

Quite simply, the game of Survivor was just not ready for a player the likes of Russell. The game just can’t handle him. He is a genius strategist, and great fun to watch, but his epic downfall season after season is that he just can’t seem to understand that getting to the end is only HALF of the game. He is so brutal in his dealings with the other players, that it is AMAZING to me how he sits open-mouthed in disbelief each season that he is so hated that NO ONE votes for him to get the title of Sole Survivor. He is a man destined to forever come in second.

I could go on and on about how much fun it was to watch Russell continue to find Idols, or Parvati’s unbelievably ballsy late game move of giving out 2 Immunity idols during 1 tribal council to begin the Heroes' descent, or J.T.’s ridiculously trusting move of handing over an idol to his greatest enemy, but as I said, if you haven’t been watching it all season, it’s all lost on you anyway.

But this season has gotten me all juiced to ONCE AGAIN try out to be on the show.

As some of you might know, I have applied to be on the show 2 different times, and I got kinda far along in the recruitment process one of those times.

This is my time. I can feel it. The third time will be the charm.

Now I just need to come up with an idea I can realistically do for my audition tape.

Any ideas?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Dead Or Alive

Update: Answers have been put up in comments

No, I’m not talking about the British New Wave band from the 80’s who brought us the best song ever written in the history of music, "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)".

No, I’m talking about my latest obsession.

I’m talking about the website Dead Or Alive.

Have any of you ever checked this out? It’s morbidly fun and fascinating.

It is an eerily accurate, daily updated, database detailing the birth and death of every famous person on the planet.

Want to know if Mrs. Garett from “The Facts of Life” is still alive? It’s there.

Want to know how old Freddie Prinze was when he killed himself? It’s there.

Want to sort how many famous people have died due to volcanic eruptions? It’s there too. (It’s 3, by the way, if you can believe that shit).

I have found myself spending more and more time there during the past week, using all of their cool features, like getting a list of all the famous people that I have outlived.

It’s sick, sick fun.

My favorite activity of late is to take their daily DEAD OR ALIVE quiz. You can choose the category, from entertainment, to sports, to politics, to some others.

Hey, this could be fun. Here is an Entertainment quiz from today. Let’s see how good you guys can do.

Whoever gets the most right will win a special prize from me. Of course, that special prize will most likely be a long, wet, French kiss from me, but you’ll have to pay for your own airfair.

Put your guesses in the comments, and I’ll reveal the answers on Monday.

Anyway, let’s do it! And NO CHEATING, you filthy reprobates!

Are they Alive or Dead?

1-Raymond Burr -Actor in many movies, "Walk a Crooked Mile", "Rear Window", starred in the TV shows "Perry Mason" and "Ironside"

2-Michael Todd - Producer of "Oklahoma!", "Around the World in 80 Days", and other movies, known for his technical innovations in wide-screen photography, third husband of Elizabeth Taylor

3-Armin Mueller-Stahl - He has appeared in "Music Box", "Shine", "The X Files" movie and other movies

4-Gene Hackman - He has starred in many, many movies, including "Superman IV", "Hoosiers", "Crimson Tide", "The French Connection", and "Narrow Margin"

5-Jean Renoir - French director of films such as "La Grande Illusion" and "Le Crime de Monsieur Lange"

6-Lon Chaney Jr. - He appeared in a lot of horror movies including his most famous role as the star of the movie "The Wolf Man", he also appeared in "High Noon"

7-Hugh O’Brian - Starred in the TV series "The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp", founder of the Hugh O'Brian Youth Foundation which works to develop leadership skills in US students

8-Richard Deacon - Played Mel Cooley on "The Dick Van Dyke Show", also played Fred Rutherford on the TV series "Leave It to Beaver"

9-Sam Kinison - Shock comic

10-Janet Gaynor - Starred in the 1937 version of the movie "A Star Is Born", won the first ever Best Actress Oscar in 1928

p.s. I got 8 out of 10.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Iron Man 2



As if anyone had ANY doubts about where my loyalties lie, on Friday I snuck out of work early so I could see the 4pm premier of Iron Man 2.

If you recall, I was a big fan of the original movie. I just felt that it worked on so many levels.

Unfortunately, I felt that the sequel, which I had very high hopes for, falls short on just about every level.

Ah, where do we begin?

In the first film, Robert Downey Jr. WAS Tony Stark. He played the part of the smary comic-book millionaire playboy perfectly.

In this film, he really just became a caricature of what he did the first time. He TRIES to be funnier, but most of the jokes just fall flat. And EVERYTHING he says is an attempted joke …. EVERYTHING. I don’t think he ever said ONE serious line in the entire movie. It takes him out of the realm as a ‘flippant’ character and degrades him into a sit-com wannabe. Every single scene Downey has with Gweneth Paltrow is nothing more than an excuse for her to play the straight man and try to speak as Downey keeps throwing zingers out. Most of the time they speak OVER each other. It got annoying.

I thought Mickey Rourke was pretty good as Whiplash, who was always one of my favorite villains, but I just can’t help but feel that Whiplash was a lame choice of bad guy for Iron Man. There are tons of better villains out there to have used. The writers must have come to the same realization as well, since the final battle is so anti-climactic the entire theatre looked at each other with a collective “That’s it?” when it was over.

Scarlett Johansson did a surprisingly good job at being the Black Widow, but here again, she was underused. She basically had one fight scene, and when she does, Iron Man isn’t even there.

Done Cheadle did a good job as War Machine, but I would have liked to have seen more of him, and I would have liked to have seen them make a point about what War Machine’s purpose really is. The War Machine armor is SUPPOSED to be a specialized Iron Man suit that is low on defense but super high on firepower. In this film, he’s basically just another Iron Man, but with a gun on his shoulder.

Even with its flaws, I think I could have STILL given this film a decent rating, if not for one scene in particular that made me want to scream. I’m not going to spoil it for those of you who haven’t seen it yet, but it involves a drunk Iron Man trying to dance at his birthday party, WHILE IN HIS IRON MAN SUIT, and then a fight that breaks out while DJ AM spins records in the background during the brawl.

Really.

That scene alone removes one star from this movie for me.

So, that’s my take on it. Iron Man 2 presented me with only a “Meh” start to this Summer’s Blockbuster movie season.

Friday, May 07, 2010

Another Reason Why I Should Just Keep My Mouth Shut



Last night……..

Her: Hey, I was just doing our bills and I realized that you only have 2 more years of car payments before your convertible is paid off!

Me: Yeah, that sounds about right.

Her: You know what? We should just pay it off. That’s one less bill we’ll have to pay each month.

Me: Sounds good to me. I’m all for paying fewer bills.

Her: Hmmmm. It IS a lot of money, though.

Me: Yeah, it is.

Her: Maybe we should just start doubling up on your payments instead?

Me: That works too.

Her: If we started doubling up your payments, how quickly could we pay it off?

Me (in admittedly my most smart-ass-edly tone): Gee, I’m no math whiz or anything, but I’d say about one fucking year.

Her: ................

Her: Asshole.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

I’m A Giver…



Most people as attractive as I am are usually too self-obsessed to bother giving something back to others less fortunate.

Not me. I am as selfless as I am beautiful.

One of the ways I go about giving something back to the little people is that I regularly donate blood.

I’ve been donating every few months for about 10 years now, and I must REALLY be something special because there have been a few times where they have really fucked me up while I was donating and yet I keep coming back to donate more.

One time, the nurse accidently punched the needle THROUGH my vein, so my arm had internal bleeding. After 2 days, my arm was a wonderful shade of Rigor-Mortus-Black. That was sexy.

Then, about a year ago, the nurse missed my vein and hit one of my nerves. The pain shot right up my arm. To this day, I STILL can’t completely feel a part of my thumb.

This last time, however, they REALLY outdid themselves.

I think they almost killed me.

………

I had thought it was going to be a normal blood-letting session when I went last week, but much to my surprise they asked me if I wanted to donate using the Alyx machine this time.

Do you guys know what that is? Probably not, since it’s still kinda new. In a nutshell, the Alyx machine takes DOUBLE the amount of blood from you, but while you are donating, it separates your red blood cells from your plasma, and it re-injects the plasma, along with some saline, back into you at the same time. It’s a huge help to the hospitals, but many people don’t like to do it because giving that much can sometimes really put a hurting on people. Plus, the re-injection part can tend to hurt a little.

But like I said, I’m a super-humanitarian, so I went for it.

Once they strapped me in, I noticed that the machine had 3 bags attached to it. It was explained to me that Bag # 1 would start collecting my blood. Every once in a while, the Alyx machine would start to separate my red blood cells from the blood, putting it in Bag # 2. While the machine was doing that, Bag # 3, which was full of saline, would start getting mixed with my plasma, and start getting injected back into my hunky body. It then repeats this whole sequence 4 times, until it has taken 2 pints of blood.

Make sense?

Anyway, everything STARTED OFF pretty well. I saw Bag # 1 start to fill up with my sexy blood. A few minutes later, I felt my arm start to tingle as the saline was being injected into me.

This was pretty easy, I thought. Onto the 2nd sequence!

This is when things started to go off the rails.

It all started off normal enough. I saw more blood being drawn into Bag # 1, but I DIDN’T feel anything being injected back into me.

After a few minutes, the nurse, also sensing something was not going right, walked over to me.

While she was checking me out, the machine apparently decided that it was time to fuck with me. Suddenly, a loud alarm started buzzing, and warning lights started strobe-lighting all over the place!

The room looked like one of those movies where the nuclear reactor is about to blow.

It’s definitely NOT the kind of thing you want to happen to a machine that is currently sucking blood out of you.

Anyway, the nurses came running over, and none of them could figure out what was going on.

After a frantic minute, one of them yells, “I don’t know what’s happening! Go get Margaret, our supervisor! She’ll know what to do!”

So, I sat there as I was being de-sanguinated while someone ran off to fetch Margaret.

She ran in, and started quickly punching buttons on the Alyx machine.

Then she looked up and said:

“It says it’s an Error Code 7320. I’ve never heard of an Error Code 7320! Does anyone know what that is?”

All of the other nurses shook their head.

“Ok, someone get me the manual!”

Are you fucking kidding me?

I’m sitting there spouting blood from my arm like old faithful, and they wanted to brush up on some light reading? I could not fucking BELIEVE what I was hearing!

Anyway, someone brought over a big dusty binder, and the nurses frantically leafed through it.

Much to NO ONE’S surprise, Error Code 7320 was not IN THE FUCKING MANUAL!

While Nurse Ratchet decided to have a quick pow-wow with her staff about what the fuck to do, I began to notice something odd about the Bag # 3. The one with the saline.

It was starting to become cloudy. Pinkish, actually.

That’s when I realized that the bags were starting to back up, and now my blood was flooding into the Saline bag!

It was at that point that we finally all agreed that I had done MORE than my part for charity, and they finally just disconnected me from the machine.

Now my arm looks like I’m coming down from a 2 year heroin habit.

I think it’s time for me to come up with a new charitable endeavor.

Maybe I’ll become a sperm donor.