Thursday, February 28

A Froze in place.

On a cold Saturday in New York City, the world’s largest train station came to a sudden halt. Over 200 Improv Everywhere Agents froze in place at the exact same second for five minutes in the Main Concourse of Grand Central Station. Over 500,000 people rush through Grand Central every day, but today, things slowed down just a bit as commuters and tourists alike stopped to notice what was happening around them. Enjoy the video first and then go behind the scenes with our mission report and photos.

More pictures, videos, and text here.

Tuesday, February 26

I hear footsteps.

Feist, My Moon My Man:

Listening to this song the other day, I was thinking that one of the things I really liked about it was the sound of footsteps at the end of it. It made it more interesting and every time I hear it I try to imagine what they are about.

That reminded me of an old Rolling Stones' song, We Love You, which opens with the sound of footsteps and a cell door slamming. We Love You wa sn’t available for many years on any albums. I remember it because I had it at one time on a 45 (long since gone).

So what is it with those sound effects?

Here is what I came up with:

Leslie Feist is a Juno award winning Canadian singer - songwriter. The song, My Moon My Man is on her third album, The Reminder. (Verizon Wireless has used it in one of their commercials.)

Feist used her own field recordings of footsteps, doors closing and birds as a connective thread between My Moon My Man and The Park.

“It’s really chapter one and chapter two of the same story in a way,” she explains. “It has me ditching my man and running outside and being alone.”

It's one of my favorite songs right now.


The Rolling Stones, We Love You:

We Love You and B-side Dandelion were released as a single in the late 1960’s.

We Love You begins with the sound of a prison warden’s footsteps, followed by the sound of a cell door slamming shut. This was around the time Mick and Keith were arrested on drug charges.

The Beatles, The Who and The London Times supported them because of the supposedly draconian nature of the sentences that were handed down to them. They were eventually overturned (see link).

The song’s lyric We Love You is seemingly an echo of the Beatle’s All You Need is Love.

The Who, trying to help The Stones’ by keeping their music alive while they were going through court and prison difficulties, released a double A side version of The Stones’ The Last Time and Under My Thumb. (At the time it might have seemed they needed help to keep their music alive though 40 years later I think they did okay by themselves.)

My Moon My Man

My moon, my man's a changeable land
Such a loveable land to me
My care, my co-lead barber I know
There's nowhere to go but on

How honestly my beggar should be
The song's out of key again
My fools, my things
We're digging the things
If the candlelit page again

Take it slow
Take it easy on me
Shed some light
Shed some light on things
Take it slow
Take it easy on me
Shed some light
Shed some light on things

My moon and me
Not skirty swift bean
It's the dirtiest clean I know
My care, my co-lead barber I know
There's nowhere to go
There's nowhere to go

Take it slow
Take it easy on me
Shed some light
Shed some light on things
Take it slow
Take it easy on me
Shed some light
Shed some light on it please

My moon
The moon my man
My moon
The moon my man...

We Love You

We don't care if you only love "we"
We don't care if you only love "we"
We love you. We love you, and we hope
that you will love "we" too
We love "they". We love "they", and
we want you to love "they" too

We don't care if you hound "we" and
love is all around "we"
Love can't get our minds off
We love you, we love you

You will never win "we"
Your uniforms don't fit "we"
We forget the place we're in
'Cause we love you
We love you. Of course, we do

I love you. I love you
And I hope that you won't prove wrong
We love you. We do. We love you. We
do. Ah...

Monday, February 25

Missed you.

One thing I noticed after watching the Oscar's "in memorium montage" was that Brad Renfro wasn't included in it. I thought he should have been.

Mentioning that, I also think Lois Nettleton should have been included. I have always liked her work in the many televison shows I've seen her in. The Midnight Sun on the Twilight Zone was a classic episode she was remembered for. I think I saw the original but then again it could have been on one of Sci-Fi's Twilight Zone holiday marathons.

One thing I was drawn to was her lazy eye. It gave her a compassionate, not perfect look that made her a favorite of mine.

Interesting fact: She was married 6 years to Jean Shepherd (co)-writer of the movie, "you'll shoot your eye out...",A Christmas Story. How ironic is that? (think eye)

She did much more television, Twilight Zone, The Fugitive, etc., than movies but did she have The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas , Dirty Dingus MacGee, and Soggy Bottom USA on her resume.

I don't remember seeing them but I might have. One had Burt Reynolds and Dolly Parton in it and another Don Johnson. If I did see them, they weren't memorable.

Anyway, I still think both of these actors should have gotten a mention.

Rolling Stones, Miss(ed) You...

Saturday, February 23

It wasn't a HARD decision. Ha.

I don't think Bob is smiling anymore. I used to hate those commercials. Usually they were on the non-premium cable stations like TNT, TBS, DISCOVERY, TLC, HISTORY, etc.

They were so annoying, and now will probably be replaced with another Bob, known to more as Robert Wagner, in commercials selling reverse mortgages. I'm getting sick of those too. (It takes a thief was really 40 years ago? Damn.)

Courtesy of the Chicago Sun Times:

CINCINNATI -- A federal court jury on Friday found the owner of a company that sells ''male enhancement'' tablets and other herbal supplements guilty of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, bank fraud and money laundering.

Steve Warshak is founder and president of Berkeley Premium Nutraceuticals, which distributes Enzyte and a number of products alleged to boost energy, manage weight, reduce memory loss and aid restful sleep.

Warshak, 40, could face more than 20 years in prison and his company could have to forfeit tens of millions of dollars.

Prosecutors claimed customers were bilked out of $100 million through a series of deceptive ads, manipulated credit card transactions and the company's refusal to accept returns or cancel orders. They said unauthorized credit card charges generated thousands of complaints over unordered products.


Youtube had a clip of the TV show for those that are too young to remember.

Saturday, February 16

The Zodiac: Watch the one without the "The"

I saw on the Ebert & Roeper show, less Ebert for now, that the "Zodiac" was a pretty good movie. It made their favorite lists for 2007.

I thought it was on cable tonight: Robert Downey Jr., Jake Gyllenhaal would be in it, both actors I liked.

I watched it. Wrong one.

I kept wondering when Robert Downey Jr. was going to show up. Instead, the main character was Justin Chambers (Grey's Anatomy). He was okay but to me the movie didn't really have much excitement or suspense.

There was a kid character (Rory Culkin) in the movie that had a fairly big part who seemingly (in my mind), would, in a flash forward (like in Lost), turn out to be Robert Downey Jr.

Never happened.

In fact, based on my expectations of star power, I also thought the main actress in this movie was Jennifer Connelly - turns out it was Robin Tunney.

I should have known better.

I do like her though. She was good in Prison Break and the under rated Hollywoodland.

I didn’t know there were two Zodiac movies, especially coming out within 2 years of each other: The Zodiac, 2005 and Zodiac, 2007.

Rotten Tomatoes rates the first one at 25% and David Fincher's newer take on the serial killer at a much better 89%.

I’m betting I’ll like the one I missed more than the one I watched.

Review to follow when I see it.

And to top it off, I missed Grace Potter’s and the Nocturnal's special on our local Public Television station that followed The Austin City Limits.

Fortunately, I caught the last 15 minutes of her special. Fantastic. She gets two youtube clips. I'm sure I'll catch it again in reruns.

"The Zodiac" trailer:

Latest trailer from director David Fincher's (Se7en, Panic Room, Fight Club) about the infamous Zodiac serial killer who operated in northern California in the late 1960's. The film stars Jake Gyllenhaal, Robert Downey Jr. and Mark Ruffalo.

"Zodiac" trailer:

Grace Potter at the Boston Music Awards:

Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Treat Me Right:

Tuesday, February 12

Dog days of winter.

Breaking news: Uno, the Beagle, wins Westminster Dog Show!
My post on dogs was just by chance - anyway, way to go Uno. We used to have a beagle when I was a kid: Taffy Ann. Hearing Uno on TV, he sure has the Beagle woof (or whatever noise that is).

Amy with Cubbie at the yearly local car show.

It was right down the street at the High School. Taken in 2003, Cubbie in dog years is now older than Amy.

I'm just waiting for it to get warm. It's been too cold to play with Cubbie outside, so instead I'll post a couple 15 second videos I took with my camera.

Usually I hit him softballs for about a half hour after work. When he was younger, I couldn't miss a day with him or else he would be bursting with unspent energy. Being a little older, he just shrugs if we don't go out.

Below is a picture of Cubbie strolling thru the yard.

In the background: phlox, sunflowers, dahlias, and cornfield.

If I hit the softball hard enough, it would land a couple rows deep into the corn.

Cubbie loves running through the corn - he always finds the ball too.

(Note: I am much farther back when I hit the softballs. I'm guessing 200 feet. He really gets exercise during our workouts.)

My camera gives you 15 seconds of high quality video or however long you want with medium. I do the high because 15 seconds is long enough.

I used to have Magnavox VHS movie camera - you could take up to two hours of video. Kinda like a Robert Altman movie with no editors. In my case, shorter is better.

Both videos are us playing in the large with snow - one with my "homeless" burn barrel blazing and one by the house (too much snow that day).

If you notice, at the end, he runs through my legs, turns around, pokes his head through the other way and gives me the ball. He learned that on his own.

Thursday, February 7

Snow day.

Today's a snow day. We are, as I type, getting over a foot of snow. It was so bad Clint picked me up at work with his Jeep - it was too bad to drive my car home. Why do the kids always have the better cars?

I took these after getting home before it got too dark. It didn't start out too well; I took Cubbie out to run around while I was taking pictures.

I was walking through the snow with my camera dangling when he ran by me, his head catching the camera strap, pulling it out of my hands. He had a new collar with my camera dragging in the snow. I got it back, dried it out and took these. I was snowing so bad I had a hard time even seeing. Anyway...

This catches the fresh snow on my picnic table, a rusty clothes line pole along with a bush in the middle, and the American flag in the back. (My 92 year old aunt lives in the house on the right and that is her super tall pine tree - there was no angle that would have kept them out of the picture, so they stayed.)

Green pine needles on branches, trees in the middle, and trees far back. The wind was blowing so bad I got hit in the face with a branch. I would have liked to get more of the dog tracks at the foot of the closest tree but couldn't see thru the viewfinder. Snap, shoot, and head home. Ha.

Labs like snow as well as water. I'm standing in my garden looking west. Cubbie, mid trees, far house and garage with blizzard conditions (look at it blowing off the garage roof). On the right by the tree is the picnic table in the first picture.

Recropped below:

This would be my favorite though I obviously didn't take it today. Reds near and medium (and Cubbie), tree and softball bats far. So warm looking. Reds do that.

Tuesday, February 5

Fat Tuesday.

I went to Mardi Gras once. A couple friends and I decided on the spur of the moment to go. We gathered some clothes and money and took off. It took 31 hours to drive non-stop to New Orleans. Jerry and I did all the driving because the car had a 454 cubic inch engine with a stick shift and we didn't trust Rick behind the wheel.

We had no reservations but found a hotel room for a couple days before the big crowds came into town. When that happened, we slept on the floor of a motel room of a couple girls we knew that also made the trek down to N'awlins. That was a fun time (six people sharing one room and bathroom - anyway, we survived.)

The cops down there don't like Northerners and a couple times we almost got thrown in the hoosegow: seemingly our only sin was being a Yankee. (We talked our way out of most of the situations.)

We visited many bars - some good, some bad, some risky for our well being, some gay, some redneck. Being young and invincible, we had a great time at them all. We drank lots of beer and ate tons of beans and rice while seeing some excellent music performed.

I still have my souvenir Hurricane glass and a couple strands of beads. I do regret the girls in the crowds didn't have the "Girls Gone Wild" mentality in relation to baring themselves that seems to be the norm these days...

Neville Brothers, Yellow Moon:

Dr John, Right Place, Wrong Time:

The Neville Brothers and The Meters, Fire on the Bayou: