Happy Belated Thanksgiving
I’ve done nothing but sleep for the past two days. Really. It all started Wednesday night, when I went to the Twilight Singers show. I knew it was going to be a big night since no one had work the next day and a bunch of friends were getting together for this show. I had no idea it would be the kind of night where you wonder how you got where you are when you wake up and realize you still aren’t home yet. I won’t go into details, but will fill you in the highlights. The show rocked. It has to be one of the best shows I’ve seen all year. Keanu Reeves was there, and I talked to him. He is even more beautiful in person, but I still hate the Matrix. After the show we decided to go back to the Shortstop since we were with one of the owners, and the band and everyone was going to hang out for a little while more. That was a blast, and I’ve got the photo booth pictures to prove it. But the night kept going since Mo and I decided we didn’t want to go to bed, so we continued the festivities in a friend’s hot tub and drank champagne while we watched the sun rise. If that’s not a great way to celebrate Thanksgiving, I don’t know what is.
As for my actual Thanksgiving meal, I had planned to order a pizza with my friend Scott, but all the pizza places were closed. So we went out to Fred 62 for our meal to be followed by drinks at the Dresden. Swingers made the Dresden famous, but Marty and Elaine make it infamous.
I guess I should mention what I’m thankful for, since that is what this holiday is all about. I’m thankful for my family, since no matter what crazy ideas I might have (like moving to LA) they are endlessly supportive. I’m thankful for my friends, even the ones I don’t get to see often but I know are always only a phone call away if I need them. I’m also thankful for my day job, which I found myself almost missing today while I watched daytime TV and realized if I didn’t have a job I would be subjected to watching this crap everyday.
And now the Christmas season begins. I’m compiling my favorite songs of 2003 to be put on a CD and given to friends as a gift. Feel free to e-mail me with your suggestions as to who should make the list.
Maybe the valet isn’t so bad
Last night we celebrated Alex’s birthday with a Sushi dinner. I, being morally opposed to valet, think I find this awesome rockstar parking spot just around the corner. Score. We have a lovely dinner. I don’t mind splurging since Alex is a good friend and no one likes the person that comes to dinner and only has a glass of water because they don’t want to spend money, so I eat myself into a food coma. After dinner, I had some time before I had to go the Viper Room, so we all went to Daddy's. I go back to my car and find another fucking parking ticket. For those of you keeping track, that is three tickets in the past four weeks (one was a driving violation, 2 were parking). With my recent auto repairs, I’m up to spending $640 on my car in the last month. And I don’t even drive anything nice. I’m pissed. Really pissed. But it’s Alex’s birthday, so I move onto Daddy’s with a brave face. Daddy’s is cool, but I need to hightail it to the Viper Room so I don’t miss the Peels for the third time this weekend.
I make it in time for the show (I pay for parking because there is no way I’m risking another ticket), thanks to the fact that everyone has left LA and there is no traffic for once. A lot of friends are there, which is really nice. After their set, I realize I’m still only working on 3 hours of sleep and now it’s 1am so I’ve already screwed up that night’s sleep as well. I head home. I’m still a little grumpy. I pass the Whiskey, Roxy and Rainbow Room while walking on Sunset back to my car. I realize these are places that I never thought I’d actually see go to or see in person while growing up in NJ. So I pep-talk myself into not taking these kinds of things for granted, and to stop being grumpy. It almost works.
This morning I’m tired, but excited for the Twilight Singers show tonight with Mo. I just hope I can fit in a disco nap or something.
Broken Social Scene are an amazing band. They’re more than a band, they are musicians. I was completely blown away by their performance at the in-store. Members of Stars, another band I’ve been meaning to see, joined them onstage. There were two trombone players, trumpet player (no, they aren’t a ska band), keyboardist, drummer, two guitar players, bassist, and a guest singer all on stage at once. With nine musicians on stage, they produced a really lush sound. Slipknot should take notes.
Then I went to Spaceland to see Midnight Movies. They were clever. They play music that sounds like it should accompany a movie. They also project an old movie on a white curtain behind them while they play. So their entire set is like a live score to whatever they are projecting, thus the name Midnight Movies. Like I said, they were clever. I just won’t be listening to them in my car and singing along anytime soon.
The highlight had to be while I was waiting for my friend to get a drink and had to stand next to Linda Perry and her cohorts. Linda actually said, “I don’t have a job, I have sugar-mommies.” Like she was being cued, in strutted Pink and her entourage. Pink was wasted and barging (thought politely) in and out of the iron lung (room in Spaceland where you can—gasp—smoke indoors) looking for Linda. Who knew they were indie-rockers?
Oh and my car cost me $300 to fix. I HATE DRIVING AND HAVING A CAR. Needing a car is LA's biggest flaw.
I hate dating.
I wake up this morning to find out that my stereo, heater, and power windows are not working in my car. My break light is also on. Awesome. I should have taken it as an omen and gone back to bed.
I had a lunch date today with a guy I met once a week ago for five minutes in a bar. This is why I don’t frequent bars unless it is to see bands. I meet random people that I have nothing in common with, and wind up on these dates that have no promise of turning into anything except for a long, drawn-out nuisances. I meet him at lunch since 1) I don’t really remember meeting him since it was the night out with Matthew, where we were over-served and under fed, 2) dating during your lunch hour gives you a great excuse to leave after only an hour, and finally 3) everything is safer during the daytime.
So I meet Mr. X across the street from my office, and we decide to go to Houston’s for lunch. I notice he talks extremely fast, as if he is a speed freak, but I have a feeling he’s never been in the presence of drugs in his life. He follows his unintelligible jabbering with hysterical laughter. At least I’m cued so I know when to join in on the laughter. He manages to tell me in the first five minutes that he was on Win Ben Stein’s Money and won. I forgive the fact that he gave up this info without being prompted, and give him points for being on a cool game show and winning. He then goes on to say that he is really square when it comes to music, but “that Nirvana was really good.” I wait for him to laugh, but he doesn’t, so I solemnly agree. He then went on to say that guy from Nirvana’s wife was good in the Larry Flint movie, though he’s never heard her music. THE MAN DOESN’T KNOW COURTNEY LOVE’S NAME?! Ok, he gets points for that too. Otherwise, he is from another planet and we have nothing in common (the man is 13 years older than me, so I wasn’t expecting to be able to dish out the latest installment of Rich Girls with him, but his pop-culture knowledge is completely nil. I fail to mention the blog). It comes time to order, and he suggests we split a burger and salad. Guys: don’t do this on a first date. It comes off cheap, even if the girl isn’t a gold-digger. I wasn’t planning on letting him pay for me, but when he pulled that, I figured I could let him pick up this one.
Basically, it’s a painful hour, and I’m hoping we end it with a handshake and come to terms that this isn’t a love connection. He then asks for my cell phone number, so I give it (I’m a glutton for punishment). He then calls it right in front of me to check that I didn’t give him a fake. That scares me just a little bit, and I lie that I’m going away for the weekend and run for my office. It takes him twenty minutes to e-mail to say he had a great time and when can we do it again (note: he also includes a picture of his POODLE Greta). Ugh. Anyone with suggestions with how to put an end to this without being mean or hurting anyone’s feelings, please e-mail me.
I’m hoping this day can only get better. I’m going to see Broken Social Scene at Amoeba at 7pm for an in-store, and then Midnight Movies at Spaceland for the last night of their residency. Please, if you see me out, don’t let me talk to strangers
The party last night was F-U-N. Thanks everyone for coming out. I don’t really have anything interesting to say about it or juicy details to reveal. It definitely wasn’t boring, but there also wasn’t any drama. I appreciate that. I drank too many Rock Stars in the beginning of the night (they are like Red Bull times two if you’ve never heard of them), so I was a little hyper. I figured it’s better to have a hyper host than a drunk one.
After only getting two hours sleep, I went to the Sleepy Jackson in store at Amoeba this afternoon with my new friend Debbie. They were enjoyable, kind of like My Morning Jacket, but without all the hair and from Australia. Though I was supposed to go see The Peels tonight, I needed to come home and go to bed, which I did. Now it’s 3am, and I’m wide-awake. I should have just stayed up and went out anyway just to stay on a normal sleep schedule.
This is a boring entry. I apologize. It's 3am. What do you want from me?
Big in ’03, a recap
I took Deidre to the taping of the VH1 Big in ‘O3 Awards last night at the Universal Amphitheater for her birthday. First off, we had to get to the Universal Amp by 7:45pm otherwise, we weren’t getting in. Seems like an easy task when you get off of work at 6pm, right? Wrong. In LA, where distance is measured in time rather than miles, I actually came close to not making it in time for the 7:45 cut off. And it’s not like my office is that far away! Good Lord.
This is the second annual Big in ‘03, and thank goodness they decided to have yet another award show because there really isn’t enough. I mean the last one was only this past Sunday (AMA’s). I guess since they aren’t airing it until Nov. 30th, they can get away with Kid Rock singing the same song he did for the AMA’s. And though Kid Rock kind of leaves me cold, last night he set the stage on fire. No really, the stage caught fire. I was watching the show and just as I was thinking to myself that his pyrotechnics looked strangely like the ones from the footage of the Great White incident, I noticed a man rush to the side of the stage with a fire extinguisher and put out a fire that started on the left side of Kid’s set-up. Have we learned nothing?
The awards themselves were kind of amusing. The first one was for best Gay something or other. Five guesses who won that one. (Get it… Fab 5?) I won’t spoil any others for you because I know you will have to sit through this show every day for the next year thanks to the VH1 re-run policy, but I will give you some brief commentary.
Liza Minnelli was there, which is surprising considering her past tumultuous relationship with Vh1.
P Diddy and Ashton Kutcher: Would these two EVER be friends if they weren’t famous? P Diddy, I respect your running thing, and Ashton I respect that you’re a looker, but otherwise, please go away.
Nikki Hilton: A poor man’s Paris. While she was introducing the Breakout Star of ’03, her line went something like this: “One second no one knows them, and the next there are everywhere.” Some ya hoo in the crowd took this opportunity to scream, “Like your sister!” and the entire Amphitheatre started cheering and laughing. Poor Nikki had to go on like she didn’t hear it. I almost felt sorry for her.
Shania Twain performed. Does anyone care?
Matchbox 20 also performed. Um, I don’t care.
Dear Outkast: Thank you for making me excited that I went to this fiasco last night. As soon as they took the stage, EVERYONE jumped out of their seats, starting shaking it like a (I’m not going to finish that lyric), and having a good time. I was tired and cranky, but as soon as Outkast was announced, I instantly had this goofy smile on my face like Santa Claus was about to come out on stage.
And let me just go on a little bit about the whole reality television thing. They brought out every reality television cast member of the past year and let us all know how silly we are getting about this whole thing by making them all stand on stage at once. These are our new celebrities? Let’s snap out of it. But of course, Deidre was so excited to be sitting in front of the cast of Paradise Hotel, she almost wet herself.
That’s it. I’m having a party tonight at my house. Please pray my toilet doesn’t get set on fire this time.
Dulli’s the Man
Greg Dulli’s new band, the Twilight Singers, is currently on tour and in the spirit of his old band (Afghan Whigs) are kicking ass. Literally.
While in NYC, Greg was at a bar when some girl starting pointing at him while doing the whole, “that guy looks familiar” thing. Turns out, the girl was with a member of that band Thursday, who decided to play tough guy and approach Greg and say to his girl “Oh Yeah, this guy was famous for about a week 10 years ago.” This cocky little thing then went on to sing from "Milez Iz Ded" (Afghan song from Congregation) “don’t forget the alcohol, oooh, baby.”
So Greg, being Greg Dulli, threw his Maker’s in the guy’s face. Thursday dude starts to protest, but Greg retorts “See, I didn’t forget the alcohol.” Greg then reached for that girl’s White Russian type drink and threw that on him as well. Thursday guy then slips on all the spillage and hit his head on the table and started bleeding.
Dulli’s such a badass; he doesn’t even have to touch someone to beat them up.
Moral of the story: have some respect, otherwise you are just another undistinguishable screamo band that no one will even recognize enough to bother while in a bar 10 years later.
Say it ain’t so Billy!
In case you are too lazy to actually click on my links, I will give you to this little ditty from Page Six:
“BILLY Crudup has coldly walked out on his girlfriend of seven years, Mary Louise Parker, who is 7 1/2 months pregnant with his child, sources say - and it's because he fell in love with his longtime pal Claire Danes. ‘They have been friends for years,’ a spy said. ‘They share the same agent and know each other from the New York scene, but they never got romantically involved until they starred in this last movie together ('Compleat Female Stage Beauty.')" Another Hollywood insider said: ‘Claire left [rocker boyfriend] Ben Lee, and she and Billy say they are now in love. Everyone is appalled with Billy and what he has done to Mary Louise.’ Parker, for her part, is upset, but bravely putting on a good face for her ‘Angels in America’ press appearances. ‘She is holding it together,’ Parker's rep said. Danes' rep said she and Crudup ‘have been friends for 10 years, they are not romantically involved.’”
No, Billy, No! I’m not begrudging Billy his happiness in finding a mate just because we haven’t been introduced yet, but to leave your pregnant girlfriend… that just seems so… so…
And poor Ben Lee... His albums get progressively worse, his latest a perfect example of that, and now this. It’s ok Ben. I’m here for you.
I would otherwise be supportive of this collaboration. Almost Famous meets My So Called Life. Awesome. I just wish it were under better terms.
How’s this for being a hypocrite?
DIRECT TV + TIVO FOR LESS THAN YOUR CABLE BILL CAVEATS: deal only available at Best Buy, extreme winds can affect picture, and different deals for multi-room packages. Adelphia is raising cable rates by THIRTY percent next month, so screw 'em. Direct TV is basically GIVING AWAY the works in order to get you hooked. Normally, all this would run you around $500:
Direct TV dish: $50 -$50 rebate= $0
Receiver WITH TIVO (40 hour model): $95 (TiVo box normally $250)
Basic Cable: $40
1 premium add-on (HBO, etc): $12 / month (PLUS first 3 months free)
TiVo service: $5 / month (normally $12 / month)
Other add-ons available, like sports & stuff.
Even with all that, it's STILL cheaper than my Adelphia bill's new or old rates.
Again, thanks to Scott Perry for rocking so hard and letting the people know about this. I loathe Adelphia, and it’s about time I stop giving them money.
I Guess This is Growing Up
On my hour-and-a-half,nine mile commute home from work last night my friend Scott called me and offered me tickets to see Blink 182 at the Avalon. They are doing a 2-night stand there in order to promote their new album that is released today.
I used to love Blink back in the day. I remember in high school just getting my driver’s license and driving to the mall while blasting Dude Ranch. It was my first taste of freedom, being able to drive to a Hot Dog on a Stick whenever I wanted while listening to my music way too loud. So though I’ve out-grown the pop-punk genre, I will always have a soft spot for it in my heart.
I was really interested in seeing how Blink was pulling off their newly matured sound and persona. They have wives and children now, and have managed to make this band their day job. It’s a long cry from seeing them in 200 capacity clubs where they would ask their teenage audience to see their “boobies.” (They’ve since denounced such behavior saying when young girls flash them now it bums them out.) Last night, they tore through a 45-minute set, trying to fit in an hour’s worth of material. It just seemed rushed and obligatory. They weren’t having fun, aside from Travis, probably one of the best drummers out there today. Their stage banter was even just a tad off and forced. It just wasn’t the same. But when I looked into the crowd and saw a huge mosh pit of thirteen-year-old boys having the time of their life, I realized maybe Blink’s show hasn’t really changed at all. Maybe I’ve just grown up.
The Inside Scoop from the AMA’s
My dear friend Stacy goes to more award ceremonies than Armani. Here’s her story from last night’s AMA Awards.
“So there I was, rubbing hips with some of the hottest rock performers we know today. I’m talking about Alabama, Rod Stewart, Hall & Oates, Lionel Richie, Paula Abdul…you name it they were there at last night’s American Music Awards.
Did I miss a memo? Did I step into a porthole to 1982?
Last night’s foray into the world of Dick Clark was a scary one. (Although I did get some Dick action: “be clean, people.” We simply exchanged pleasantries, but the pun was one that I could not resist.)
Here are the highs, lows and observations (you decide what’s what):
All the action was in the trailer park erected behind the Shrine. Nobody loves the headset toting crowd and too-cool-for-the-room posturing more than I. Got a glimpse of Pam Anderson’s nether-regions (seriously) in a dress that, as a heterosexual woman I can say, was worth the price of admission. Love to see her and The Kid canoodling. Hope those kids can work it out. Hey, where’d he get that 40?
Free food. Good. Kiefer Sutherland sighting at the Baja Fresh set-up. (SSI Ed. Note: I love Kiefer.)
You know it’s a bad sign when 95% of your nominees don’t show up. (Yes, I’m talking to you, Cher.)
Note to guy in 3 Doors Down chatting with James Hetfield: Cred doesn’t rub off, bro.
Outkast was amazing. Let me say that again: Outkast for president(s). That performance had butts out of the seats. Big up to Outkast.
Rod Stewart arrived with a veritable bevy of blonde and fabulous women. Friend noted that they were probably his daughters.
Pink’s vocals, regardless of where you stand on her as pop idol, are phenomenal and blew poor Britney back to Louisiana. Britney lip-synched her new single then left the building. I’d be embarrassed, too, Brit.
Where’s the rock, people? We were represented by Evanescence, matchbox twenty and Coldplay.
Sean Paul’s posse rules. I want a posse.
The gift “bags” given to presenters, nominees and performers actually came in a body bag. Watching them shove all that stuff into Ashanti’s limo was comedy, including the Weber grill that had to ride shotgun.
And what’s with this “live via satellite” bullshit? If your ass can’t show up, too bad. I don’t go to the show to watch TV! Fleetwood Mac and Justin Timberlake should be ashamed.
So here’s where I step up on my soapbox (now, really? What were the last few paragraphs about?)Turn away if you must:
It is rumored that the AMA nominees are determined by Radio & Records and winners are chosen by polling “the music buying public.”
Huh. Who is this diabolical Radio & Records and who the hell is this mythical music buying public who chose to nominate CELINE DION as Favorite Female Artist? AND, to add insult to injury, Kid Rock won for Favorite Male Artist, nominated for “Cocky”, an album that came out in 2001 prior to his current release. I’m writing my congressman.”
Arnold is being sworn in today as our new Governor. CNN will broadcast it live at 11am PST if you still can’t believe it and have to see if for yourself. It’s a big week for Arnold. Not only does he become the Governor, but the DVD of "Terminator 3" and the reissue of "Pumping Iron” also comes out this week. That’s a man on top of his game. California’s not doing so hot these days, so hopefully Governor S. will be able to get us back on track. I’m not going to pretend I can predict whether or not Arnold will be able to do it. I don’t know. But at least it won’t be boring.
And for a recap of last night’s show: The Rapture are fun. They just are. Too bad people are just getting it now. Sub Pop put out an EP by them over two years ago. I guess the people weren’t ready. So last night’s show was a big test for the LA audience. Would they, or wouldn’t they? I’m talking about dancing. The typical LA crowd stands around, arms folded, surveying the crowd to see who’s there. At a Rapture show, people dance. Last night, LA showed some signs of life. There were definitely people there not ashamed to shake it. Well done. We have a ways to go, but at least it wasn’t a complete stand-still audience. But during the opening band Out Hud, which were also in the same vein as the Rapture, the crowd just stood there for the most part. I actually saw some people in the crowd mock the keyboardist who was really enthusiastic about his dancing. That was disappointing. Since when is having fun not cool? Get over yourself LA and just dance.
Feeling the Rapture
I over slept this morning, and I blame The Rapture for rocking too hard last night at the El Rey. More to come later.
The OC Loves Death Cab
I was alerted by Joey of Tale of Two Cities (my current favorite blog, which you should also check out daily in addition to this site) that The OC does indeed have a connection to Death Cab for Cutie, and their presence at the show was not surprising.
Joey says: "On the last episode of the summer, on the road trip to Tijuana, Seth
is driving and there is music in the background. Summer gets angry at
him and turns it down, saying 'This is just whining with guitars!'
Seth then says, 'do NOT diss Death Cab.'
Also, Micha Barton, who's character name I can't recall right now,
name dropped Modest Mouse in Spin a couple months ago, so I guess she
has some indie cred."
Thanks Joey. I hope everyone sleeps a little better tonight knowing this important bit of OC Trivia.
Hitting the Town
Did I mention Matthew’s in town? (“I know him. I KNOW him!” – Will Ferrell, ELF, 2003.)
Yesterday we started our evening with a late afternoon screening of The Station Agent. If you haven’t seen this movie, do yourself a favor and go. Brilliant acting, funny and beautifully shot, The Station Agent is tall treat about a short man.
Afterwards we walked to The Standard on Sunset. I love The Standard, but prefer the one downtown. But that’s just me. The best thing about these hip, trendy hotels? They have excellent customer service. You would expect them to be elitist, but their staff is so friendly and inviting, unlike the next establishment we visted—Bar Marmont at the infamous Château Marmont. This place is great to go to when it’s raining because it feels like you are in Hitchcock movie. But the dead butterflies on the ceiling are creepy.
Finally we came back to my ‘hood to the old stand-by 4100. What’s great about 4100 is that you can go and get all dressed up and it can still be a big night on the town. Or you can go in jeans a t-shirt for a beer, and still fit in.
Realizing we forgot to eat dinner during this madness and had been over-served throughout the night, Matthew and I went over to Astro’s for a bite. Here I beat him at table football 20-19. We also decided that avocados are delicious.
Matthew's in town!!
We took in the Death Cab for Cutie and Nada Surf show at the Henry Fonda last night and decided it was the best performance by Death Cab either of us has ever seen. DCFC has a tendency of being a bit boring live, but last night they managed to rock just a little harder. Maybe it was the Joy Division cover, I don’t know. And even when they played the song about the girl from Silver Lake “with the light brown streaks,” I didn’t even mind that Ben was airing our dirty laundry. PS. Nada Surf rule.
And it isn’t a LA rock show without a celeb spotting. Last night, the cast of The OC were milling around in the audience. (Who knew they enjoyed the sensitive indie-rock?). I screamed “Chino!” repeatedly at the show’s star, but I guess he didn’t hear me because he never said hi back. It was loud in there after all, so I forgive him.
Lots of friends were also in attendance, which is always nice to see. Tricia did a great job at introducing Death Cab, and I managed to convince Tim to let me be the new keyboarder in his band (I’m holding you to that one, Tim). Check us out on Dec. 6th at Spaceland. Also fresh off their tour with Cursive, members of the Jealous Sound came out to support their good friend Ben. If you don’t have their latest album from Better Looking Records, then you are just not cool.
Afterwards, Matthew and I hit up the Burgundy Room to see Mo who was DJ-ing for a nightcap before calling it a night. Good times.
I was watching CNN’s Crossfire while at the gym during my lunch hour (I can hear those of you snickering) and the democratic representative on the show, Paul Begala, referred to Hilary Clinton as a “rock star” just because she sold-out a speaking performance. Whoa there Paul. Rock stars do blow and bag groupies. Hilary is not a rock star. Her husband maybe, but that’s another story. Please, if you’re going to steal the kid’s lingo, use it correctly.
And how cool of a name is Wolf Blitzer?
My department was invited by one of its clients to the LA Kings game last night against the Maple Leafs at the Staples Center. They rented us out a skybox and provided food and drinks (anyone beginning to notice a trend developing here?) Wasn’t that nice?
I love hockey and I really I don’t understand why football, basketball and baseball are more popular here in the States. In football, overweight men run around for 2 seconds before they fall down. End of play. And they call this a sport? In basketball, abnormally tall men run up and down this court taking turns dunking on each other. (If you really like the game of basketball, you watch college basketball. The NBA is just a bunch of showboats.) Baseball also has out-of-shape men, who occasionally run around some bases, but mostly stand around and wait until the ball gets hit in their direction. Oh, and once in awhile they get to swing a bat. BOR-ING. But in Hockey, you have hunky foreigners moving around at all times in search of this cold, hard puck which they must sneak past their opposing goalie. If that isn’t hard enough, they are put on ice with only a thin metal blade to slide around on. And it gets better… they are encouraged to fight!
This particular game had plenty of fights thanks to Tie Domi (Maple Leafer who is notorious for fighting), the biggest goon since Tony Soprano. For the majority of the game, the Kings had a huge lead. By the end of the third period, the Maple Leafs tied the game. So that means over-time. Over-time is one 5 minute mini-period, where if no one scores, the game ends in a tie. Well, the Kings tied the Leafs last night at 4 to 4. I hate that rule. Shouldn’t they play until someone wins? Don’t we steal the idea of sports in arenas from the Greeks, where they played until someone died? Where there was a definite end? Are we not disappointing our ancestors by just quitting after a 5 minute extra period and calling it quits?! Finish the game! Let’s have a winner. Man, that is so annoying. It’s like ordering a meal at a restaurant and leaving before it gets to your table. Why bother going out to eat? Why bother watching a game if no one wins?
Who do I need to speak with to fix this rule?
Don't upset the TiVo owner
My friend Brian, a TIVO owner, of course had a retort to this morning’s post.
“TiVo stock is falling because the market is being diluted by lesser products. Most major cable operators offer their own digital video recorders to subscribers, albeit without the great features that make TiVo so cool. So what most people predict will happen is that eventually almost everyone will have a set-top digital recorder, but what they won't have are Season Passes, Wishlists, 30-second skip and other TiVo features.”
He then continued on (without encouragement) about how much there actually is on TV to TiVo. And no, he doesn’t work for the company.
This all comes from a person that thinks The Apple is cinematic genius.
I don’t dare disagree with him. I like to keep on the good side of my TiVo-owning friends.
Things I like
IT HAILED IN LA. I woke up to a news report showing hail in South Los Angeles that had accumulated so much it looked like a snowstorm. The apocalypse is near. Which brings me to Things I Like:
The Rain. It’s rained here yesterday. When I lived in Seattle, I would live for the days when the sun was out. Now that I live in LA, I live for the rainy days. The grass is always greener I guess. Actually, no it’s not. I would take LA weather over Seattle weather any day of the week. I may not be able to see the mountains in front of me because of the smog, but at least it’s sunny.
Staying in. Sometimes it’s actually nice to stay home, read, or catch up on some bad television. SIDE NOTE: TIVO stock continues to decrease in value. Why is this genius invention not taking over the world? Because there is nothing on TV worth TIVO-ing. MTV/VH1 reruns all its programs until the point you can recite every word. Carnival is a disappointment. Just bring me back Sex in the City and Sopranos, and I’ll be a happy girl. And don’t even get me started on network TV… Let’s just say if it weren’t for Bravo and BBC America, I would just give up altogether on television. (Ok, this is a blatant lie. I’ll never give up television.)
UCLA Live: Has great performances by dancers, writers, musicians, artists, etc. Where else can you see David Sedaris and Mikhail Baryshnikov appear on the same stage? (But not on the same night). Go get some culture people.
The Arclight: Best movie theatre in LA. Just don’t try the BBQ Watermelon pesto hotdog. Really don’t. It does exist, and the only edible part of it is the bun. My brother can back me up on this one.
Amoeba Records: Obvious, I know. It’s all about the used section.
Hotel Café: Great little venue. Perfect for the singer songwriter. They hosted a benefit night when I was raising money for my triathlon, so I like them.
Craigslist: It’s nothing special to look at, but I’ve managed to buy a fridge, couch, and dvd player here. They probably have one in your city too.
I know there are more things that I like, but I’ll save them for another entry. I’m trying to make some of this positive, since I’ve already gotten flack for being so jaded-sounding on this site. And I’m not jaded…. I’m just not easily impressed.
Strippers, Vodka and Vitamin Water
Went to a typical Hollywood fashion party last night held at a retail store after-hours on Cahuenga thanks to my good friend Charlie who invited me. I love these things. Strippers dancing on poles in bikinis who are considered real "dancers," complementary drinks which consist of vodka and flavored vitamin water, and girls with that fake-mohawk haircut. At least there weren't any trucker hats. But a girl did have a bleeding foot after someone stepped on them with their equally pointed stiletto heal. Ouch. I did have fun though, and surprisingly enough, I knew people there. I didn't realize I ran in such circles. Someone get me home to NJ quick before I acquire a taste for vitamin water. (Does anyone else find this gross?)
For those of you who stayed home got to see Rich Girls on MTV, my new favorite show. If you haven't seen it, you must try to catch one of its reruns this weekend. Brought to you by the network that started the whole reality television thing with Real World, Rich Girls follow around two wealthy NYC 18 year olds. One of them is Tommy Hilfiger's daughter. A quote from last night's program from one of the girls while watching a film about poor third-world children: "I'll admit it. I'll buy a pair of shoes for $400 dollars. It's like, hello?" It IS like hello. So wise. Thank you Rich Girls.
The Return of the Greatest Movie Ever Made
Of course I’m talking about The Goonies. Turns out, Richard Donner (the director of The Goonies) and Steven Spielberg (who co-wrote and executive produced it) have purchased a sequel script and are working towards getting the darn thing made.
Donner is reported as saying the sequel will bring back the original cast together which includes now hobbit Sean Astin, Surreal World cast member Corey Feldman, Diane Lane dating Josh Brolin, along with a new cast of kids who will be called “The Groonies.”
Turns out Data’s character grew up and owns an electronic repair shop where a bunch of kids hang out. Um, ok. And he calls this group of kids The Groonies instead of Goonies because of his wacky accent. These Groonies get themselves into a bit of trouble, and the original Goonies come together to save them. Since I love the original, I will hold my tongue before saying anything negative about this sequel. All I’m saying is that it better be good, and it better have Chunk in it.
I actually knew of this for over 24 hours, but was sworn to secrecy by my friend who tipped me off, since his music television news site had to have the exclusive (like this site even compares to theirs). I’m proud of myself for holding this one in so long though. I deserve a cookie.
This comes on the heels of the 32 Candles news… the sequel to 16 Candles. I know the ‘80s are back and all, but can’t the film industry come up with anything new anymore?
New Year's already?
Ok, it's the holiday season. Just give in to it. And if you are like me, you still don't know where you are spending Thanksgiving or Christmas. And if that isn't enough pressure, people are already talking about what they are doing on New Year's. But have no fear, I'm here to help. For those of you who live in LA, and dig those all night-dance party type gatherings, Giant is having their New Year's celebration at the Bonaventure Hotel and it will last for 48-hours. I'm not kidding. This party starts at 2pm on Dec 31st and goes until 2am the night of the Jan 2nd. I'm getting tired just thinking about it. The Bonaventure is HUGE. It has a 5000 capacity, with a rooftop garden that can hold 3000 people. Tickets go for $60-75 dollars (a steal for New Year's in LA), and the money actually goes to local charities so you can feel good about spending money to get wasted and dance for days because it's for a good cause. The DJ's performing is being kept under wraps, but you can expect the same kind of mega-stars like Paul van Dyk, Deep Dish, Sasha and Danny Howells who have performed for this celebration in the past.
For those of you about to rock, David Lee Roth will be performing at the House of Blues on Sunset on New Years. You can party like it's 1989.
PS: Juliette Lewis is performing at the Viper Room tomorrow night. I saw Juliette at this year's Coachella festival backstage drooling over the White Stripes and telling them how much she loved them. She must have seen Meg White's drumming skills and figured she could do that too. Great. Thanks Jack and Meg. Another actor with a band. And what ever happened to Jared Leto's 30 Seconds to Mars? Anyone who e-mails me with the latest on them earns an un-named prized. (a.k.a. office supplies).
Here is the first, and probably not the last, entry on the whole debacle that is the music industry.
Today’s Wall Street Journal had a story in it about the ad campaigns from online music sites we are all being subject to thanks to people like Apple’s itunes and Napster. You know the commercials with the silhouettes dancing to Jet while listening to their ipod? And who can ignore that cute little cat in headphones break-dancing? These commercials are probably the most entertaining pieces of advertising since The Gap starting making everyone want to take swing lessons. It’s reported that Napster spent 20 million on their ad campaign. One can guess how much Apple spent. If anyone else wants to compete, and you know they will (RealNetworks, eMusic, Rhapsody), they better get ready to open their wallets. But is there enough out there in possible returns to warrant such extravagant spending?
It seems that everyone is after a 1.4 billion chunk of change that online music will bring in as part of the music industry’s 12.8 billion worth of sales in a year. For you math wiz’s, that is 11% of the pie. It’s projected by people smarter than you and I that this percentage will increase to 33% by the year 2008. So yes, 20 million on an animated cat is worth it.
But enough number crunching.
We all know the entertainment industry likes to show off, so what would any music-company launch be without its kick-off party? Napster had its own little kick-off here in Hollywood at the House of Blues two weeks back with Ludacris, Interpol, Dashboard Confessional and newbie’s Metric (pick up this album NOW) performing. Random line-up, eh? Leave to that crazy Napster. Again this was an open bar, free food event courtesy of the cat. I, being slow by nature, didn’t realize it was open bar until I was about to leave and decided to just have one before I go. Note to self: next time read the entire invite. The crowd, being purely made up of industry people, was of course the most blasé when it came to actually watching the bands. Metric rule. I adore Interpol, who are finally showcasing some new songs. AFI went up to greet Interpol in their dressing room after their set. Men in black unite! And Paul Banks (singer of Interpol) made a point of cutting an interview with Napster short because he “had to see Dashboard Confessional.” After that I got so bored by the whole thing, I left during Dashboard’s performance. The biggest star sighting I had was Alyssa Milano, and she was rude to my friends. I guess she thinks she’s the Boss. Sean Fanning (creator of Napster) was there as well, who still looks like he belongs drinking warm Busch beer out of red plastic cups at a frat party. Props to him for keeping it real. Otherwise, the party was a flop. Money not well spent. I know I should have stayed for Ludacris, but the idea of a predominately white industry crowd watching Ludacris made me want to go home to my Netflix.
At the Movies
This weekend's box office results are in with The Matrix taking the top spot. Who cares. I might be the only person who hasn't seen any of The Matrix movies, not that I haven't tried sitting through them on more than one occasion, but I refuse to drink the Kool-Aid on this one. The Matrix is for pseudo-intellectuals who think that concept of "what is real?" is mind-blowing and life-altering. And which actor is bringing them such deep, thought-provoking art? Keanu Reeves. 'Nough said.
So onto some movies that are actually worth your nine bucks...
ELF: God bless Will Ferrell. He plays the grown-up child with such innocence that instead of coming off creepy, which is what usually happens when adults act like children, Will's version is endearing. ELF is funny, but those of you expecting "Old School" part 2, will leave disappointed. This is a safe family movie that tries to make you feel warm and fuzzy about the holidays. The jokes are silly without resorting to toilet humor. It might as well have been made by Disney instead of New Line. SIDE NOTE - When did New Line become such a power-house studio? I remembering them doing the Nightmare on Elm Street movies as a kid, but that was about it. Now they have the Lord of the Rings, Freddy Vs. Jason, Texas Chainshaw Massacre, and ELF (which came in at Number 2 this weekend racking in 32.1 million). And I swear no one at New Line told me to write this, even though I play on their softball team.
The other movie I saw this weekend was LOVE ACTUALLY, which I actually loved. (Sorry, I couldn't resist). I love British anything, and though I wouldn't classify this is as British movie because the only thing British about it was the majority of the cast and the location in which the film takes place. Otherwise, it's pure Hollywood. Love Actually brilliantly intertwines different people and their love lives, which vary from dealing with the death of a spouse, getting the courage to tell someone you love them, cheating, and the start of a new relationship. It's another warm fuzzy movie taking place around Christmas time. 'Tis the season I guess. And no, this movie isn't just for girls. Metro-sexuals will like it too. The only thing that annoyed me were the stereotypes that filled this movie. American girls dig guys with British accents, and regardless of looks or personality, they will instantly be attracted to you. Girls like guys in bands. The US President is a sleazy womanizer. Taking it even a step farther, Hugh Grant's character who plays the Prime Minister falls for one of his female workers who has dark hair, is repeatedly referred to as being over-weight (BUT WAS NOT FAT AT ALL!), and in one scene goes up to the Prime Minister during a public appearance and hugs him while wearing a beret. COME ON! Ok, ok. We get it. Stop making these dumb Monica references. It dates the film, which will ruin trying to watch it years from now on cable on a Saturday afternoon. But for a Saturday morning matine followed by brunch with my good friend Stacy , it was perfect.
And so it begins...
Postings from one small town girl getting swept up in the Los Angeles nightlife. Great. Another Silverlake hipster with a blog. Why should you care? Because politics, art, music and gossip are fun to read about. Because IM is stupid and what else are you going to do at work? Because Friendster is a cult and you should stop wasting your time there. Because I will tell you about the juicy details of wannabe name-droppers trying to play off their ironic costumes as post-modern.
That brings me to my first installment. The AFI Kickoff screening and party. I attended thanks to a talented friend and DJ, who was spinning at the after party. First up was the screening of Calendar Girls, a "Full Monty" but with girls. Some likened it to Waking Ned Divine, but I never saw that movie. So every person that said that to me last night just got blank stares in return. The movie was enjoyable, though longer than needed be. The first hour was the hollywood movie, the second hour secured its indie-status. To sum up, people saying older women are beautiful is a good thing in my book. Kudos. Let's hope we all keep that well into our 60's.
And finally the after party... held at the Henry Fonda Theatre, my new favorite venue thanks to that friggin cool open roof where you can escape, smoke (not that I do), and still see and hear what's going on in the main room thanks to it being projected on the side of the building. Does it get any cooler? Oh yeah, it does. There was an open bar and free food. After partaking in the aforementioned, I joined talented friend on the cramped, run-down, balcony in the Fonda for her set. People danced. Someone did a back flip. Don't they screen their volunteers first these days?
And finally, no party would be complete without running into someone you know. Mine was a random hook-up from a SXSW past. You know those festival whores that you run into at all of these types of things? CMJ, SXSW, AFI, SUNDANCE... I guess it takes one know... but regardless, I saw him, we joked, we laughed, and now he's going to call me. Festival hook-ups should stay in the festival. Damn that open bar.
I was just alerted that Luke Perry is in the reception area of my building at work. It's amazing that once A-listers--now C at best--still get a rise out of people when they spot them on the street. We are all suckers for nostalgia.
So says I...