Stewart on the latest freakout:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|America: Target America|
Shocking details from a locker room pep talk given by the Phillies manager this week:
“The mountain didn’t come to Muhammad, did it?” Manuel said, noting that he did all of the talking in the meeting.Come to think of it, has anyone ever seen Charlie's birth certificate?
“I used to say that in the minor leagues, when I’d tell somebody on the team, ‘Go to the mountain, son,’ that means hit a home run or do something real good,” he said.
The lesson, as always: don't go to Tufts.
So the Twins split their doubleheader with the Tigers today and remain 2 games back. I'm just glad my team has been nationally televised all week, with an ESPN game to come Wednesday- that's the advantage of one's team being part of the only pennant race this year.
A few thoughts, having watched the MLB Network feed of the local Twins broadcast: Does Blyleven really use the phrase "a great piece of hitting" ten times per game? What's with all the bunting? The Phillies get criticized for not enough small ball, but Twins do it way too much.
Also, I have to hand it to Detroit Tigers fans- they played a noon game on a Tuesday, postponed from the night before, and the stadium was totally full. Now, I know it's a city with 25 percent unemployment, but that's all the more reason- a lot of these people don't have any money. Read the SI cover story from last week for more on that.
I agree with Advanced NFL Stats that this is the worst NFL commentary ever:
Sunday night, basking in Brett Favre's miraculous game winning pass, Berman reflected on Favre's year in New York. He said that the Jets' current success should be attributed to Favre's presence there a year ago. He said, "Favre taught them...He taught them about winning."Then why are the Jets so much better now that he's gone? Why have the Packers been so mediocre the last two years? When Brett was teaching them to win, were they not listening?
He actually said that.
Eugene Robinson, on America's most popular pedophile:
During a photo shoot at the Los Angeles home of his friend and "Chinatown" star Jack Nicholson, Polanski plied a 13-year-old girl with champagne and drugs and had sex with her.Not to mention- Father Polanski would've gone to jail.
That is grotesque. In general, I agree with the European view that Americans tend to be prudish and hypocritical about sex. But a grown man drugging and raping a 13-year-old girl? That's not remotely a close call. It's wrong in any moral universe -- and deserves harsher punishment than three decades of gilded exile.
Dayo Olopade has a provocative, but I think wrongheaded piece about the migration from MySpace to Facebook:
MySpace is no longer cool. As a matter of fact, its number of users is now one-half the size of rival Facebook. Is this because MySpace is too black for the rest of America? Teenage Internet users may hold the answer. High-schoolers report their use of the social-networking giants along racial lines—MySpace is seen as “black,” while Facebook is “white.”This is the first I've ever heard of this phenomenon. I'm against segregation in all its forms, of course, but the reason myself and most other people abandoned MySpace isn't because it's "too black," it's because it's horribly designed, awful music plays on every page, and Facebook figured out how to do the same thing only much better.
This is hilarious. And not only because it appears that one of the Geico cavemen is appearing on "Jeopardy."
No one in horror movies ever has any signal:
This might be my favorite Don't Even Reply yet. Hilarious.
- Oh, Brett Favre, I will never doubt you again:
I went to the Eagles-Chiefs game Sunday and was in the car on the way out, following the Vikes on my phone- you could imagine the surprise of the rest of the all-Eagles-fans car when they were told Greg Lewis had scored the winning touchdown. Anyway, the Vikings, like both of my fantasy teams, are 3-0, heading into the Biggest Game of the Year next Monday.
- The Eagles looked good, crushing Kansas City, as Kevin Kolb showed that maybe he doesn't suck so much after all. But no, there's no quarterback controversy- I would imagine it's McNabb the rest of the way, barring injury. Also, a surprisingly amount of Vick jerseys and no picketers that I could see. And while there was an audible buzz in the stadium every time Vick came into the game, he didn't do a whole lot on the field.
- The Lions got a win! As LZ Granderson pointed out,that was the first time a Lions victory has ever been written about on Twitter.
- Apologies for the delay, as it was Yom Kippur until a few hours ago. More to come later on the Twins, etc.
I agree with every word of what Kate Harding writes here: I don't care that Polanski is a brilliant director, or that his wife was murdered, or that he was "railroaded" by the justice system. He still raped a 13-year-old girl, and he still fled law enforcement for 30 years rather than face sentencing for a crime he undoubtedly committed. Hollywood's near-unanimous defense of him is not one of its finer moments.
- "Mad Men": Duck Phillips, unlikely sex symbol! What, did Matthew Weiner tell him "Bad news is, you're not a regular anymore, but hey- you get to nail Elizabeth Moss!"
- "Curb Your Enthusiasm"- I don't know what's a bigger surprise in this year's "Curb" season- the reunion of the "Seinfeld" cast, or that they managed to wring an entire episode out of road-head jokes. Still, brilliant resolution of the getting-rid-of-Loretta problem, and Leon gets to stay, too!
- "Entourage" - This remains an awful, awful show, but I must admit the Nikki Finke joke was gold, and everything always improves with more Malcolm McDowell.
- "How I Met Your Mother"- Not the best episode tonight, I admit. But did you hear the big news?
- "Glee"- Oh, how I love this show in so many different ways. My favorite thing is the character of Rachel- the sort of talented, hot-but-self-conscious, theatrically-inclined Jewish girl of whom I've come across dozens throughout my various travels. There's one in every synagogue youth group production of "West Side Story." Not to mention, I hope Andy Reid didn't see the "Single Ladies"/trick play thing in last week's episode- it might give him ideas.
- "Saturday Night Live"- Well, Megan Fox wasn't quite as bad as I feared, but it was still a horrendous first episode, full of horrible sketch ideas that seemed to go on forever. Even U2 wasn't all that great- rapping through guitar solos is something Bono should never, ever do again. Of course, the only thing anyone's talking about is Jenny Slate's accidental F-bomb. Oh, who cares- it was at midnight! I was more offended that that sketch friggin' sucked.
At a movie screening the other day, the radio station guys were doing the usual pre-movie trivia games, and one of the questions was, "who isn't going on tour next year?" Because it was a country station, the answer was obviously Kenny Chesney, who had announced a few days earlier that he won't be going on the road.
However, one guy blurted out "Michael Jackson!" He was technically right, so they gave him a T-shirt.
Bill Simmons, on an unlikely-named Patriot:
"Julian Edelman" might be the least likely name of a football player this decade. He sounds like he should be an acoustic singer, or an indie director, or a dentist, or the son of a famous rock star, or a Beverly Hills doctor who does breast implants, or someone that Carrie Bradshaw would have dated, or a renowned designer, or someone that James Spader would play in a weird early-'90s sex movie, or someone who edited Chris Connelly at Rolling Stone in the mid-'80s ... I mean, where would "NFL receiver" rank on your top 10,000 vocations for someone named "Julian Edelman"? For me, it's about No. 7,893. I can't get over it.I'd add "candidate for new president of Brandeis University" to the list too.
Of all the people in the world who have drugged and raped underage girls, and then fled the country for decades, Polanski's probably the only one who hasn't been shunned and spat upon. He should have been, though.
President for my alma mater for the past 15 years, Jehuda leaves behind a decidedly mixed legacy. Yes, the university grew more prestigious in his years at the helm, but he significantly mishandled quite a few controversies, most notably the Donald Hindley/"wetback" mess and more recently, the Rose Art Museum debacle and everything that followed it.
An interesting sidebar- Reinharz resigned today, and plans to take charge of a nonprofit. But no such nonprofit was named, and Reinharz said he would stay on until June 2011- a date nearly two years away- while also volunteering to remain on "a very part-time basis between 2011 and 2014." Reinharz must have the same retirement adviser as Bud Selig.
Scott Keith has a nifty list of the best explanations pro wrestlers have given over the years for "heel turns," i.e. when they switch from being good guys to bad. I don't think there's a better one than "Macho Man" Randy Savage turning on Hulk Hogan because he had "lust in his heart" for Miss Elizabeth.
Ever known anyone who had a real-life heel turn? I know I have.
Regarding this horrifying murder in Kentucky of a census worker, the Chicago Sun Times goes to an expert who's not related to me:
Appalachia scholar Roy Silver, a New York City native now living in Harlan County, Ky., said he doesn't sense an outpouring of anti-government sentiment in the region as has been exhibited in town hall meetings in other parts of the country.There aren't that many people in America with the last name "Silver," nor are there many with the profession "Appalachia scholar." I'm going to guess Roy (no relation) is the only American who's both.
"I don't think distrust of government is any more or less here than anywhere else in the country," said Silver, a sociology professor at Southeast Community College.
With just three games to go at the Metrodome, Hardball Times ranks the top ten games played under the teflon. Number 1 and 2 are sort of obvious.
Was I wrong in interpreting last night's episode of "The Office"- in which Jim threatens to leave Dunder Mifflin unless he gets a promotion to Michael's job, in which the compromise is that they end up co=managers- as an extended allegory of NBC's Leno/Conan dilemma?
Also, I like "Community," I've decided. Ken Jeong's rant about being an Asian guy teaching a Spanish class was something to behold, as was the interpretive dance performance by McHale and Chevy. Chevy Chase is relevant again! Why isn't anyone talking about this?
It also took me until now to notice that the brunette girl in the class is Pete's wife from "Mad Men." Always great to see people from that show in modern clothes. Why isn't Christina Hendricks being cast in bit parts in movies? If you saw her in a trailer, you'd see the movie, would you not?
The only part of the SNL preview I liked was Jason Sudeikis' exquisite, 30-second Glenn Beck impression.
Jeremy B. Mayer, in Politico:
Imagine that Joe Lieberman had been inaugurated this past January, as an independent with a neocon foreign policy that infuriated Democrats and a domestic health care plan that enraged Republicans.That's actually the first worthwhile thing I've read on Politico in months.
We’d surely see some posters at anti-Lieberman rallies showing hook-nosed bankers meeting in cabals planning the invasion of Iran or the destruction of the American health care system.
The fringes of both the left and the right of American politics have elements of anti-Semitism in them. In that sense, the first Jewish president would have to deal with what our first black president deals with today: ugly stereotypes utilized by angry demonstrators.
But the mainstream leadership of both parties would immediately react to even subtle appeals to anti-Jewish sentiment. One reason Pat Buchanan ended his long career in Republican politics as an obscure third-party candidate was his consistent tendency to cozy up to neo-Nazis, former Nazis and other anti-Semites. When former Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-Ga.) and those closest to her spouted anti-Semitic rhetoric, mainstream Democrats largely abandoned her.
The same ostracism just doesn’t happen with a lot of anti-black rhetoric. Mark Williams, the organizer of the national tea party movement, called Obama, on national television, a “welfare thug,” while marchers at a recent rally carried pictures of Obama as an African witch doctor. I think that’s pretty close to calling a Jewish president a “cheating landlord” or “kike banker” while carrying signs depicting Lieberman in a yarmulke running the world’s media. But there has been no outcry among Republicans, no pledges to avoid Williams and his movement.
iSportacus, on the "national media vs. Philly" B.S.:
Entertaining the “national media’s against Philly” argument is like listening to Republicans whine about “activist judges.” It’s an artificial, entirely speculative construct that relies for its sensibility on the willingness of people to look for only one side of the presentation... the real reason people think this way is because they’re used to their home town media 95% of the time they tune in to sports. So when they hear some guy who’s not Merrill Reese or Chris Wheeler or Tim Saunders who (because of their audience) naturally gravitate towards a one-sided broadcast, they think the network got a couple of guys from the Soviet Red Army to call the game. Looking for a national broadcast to be as home-town-friendly as a local one is like hoping you’ll derive as much joy out of having a catch with someone else’s dad.I think every fan thinks Joe Buck hates their team.
I must say I wholeheartedly disapprove of this. There's nothing shameful about HIMYM, and sometimes their schmaltzy stuff is their best stuff. Slate should know better.
News Item: Eagles work out linebacker Jeremiah Trotter.
On the one hand, Trotter was cut, two years ago, because the team didn't think he could play anymore. On the other, he's only 32, the Iggles' linebackers are pretty weak, and a comeback would take Trotter away from his present gig on WIP, and the less said about that, the better.
I agree with just about every word of Drew Magary's Megan Fox assessment. The tanking of "Jennifer's Body"- which in fairness, wasn't that bad- just confirms my suspicion that Fox will be entirely off the cultural radar in 2-3 years.
This New York magazine item hinges on the rather questionable notion that Tyler Perry's demographic audience (church-going black people) is roughly analogous to Tucker Max's (douchebags.) if you ask me the only thing the two men have in common is that their movies aren't ever screened for critics.
Shysterball, on the logistics of the champagne the St. Louis Cardinals got for their NL Central clinching celebration:
According to the game story, St. Louis "had 25 cases of champagne waiting in the clubhouse, but the bottles will remain corked for at least another day." Twenty-five cases? They got, what, 38 guys on the roster right now? Add in eight or ten coaches and trainers and such. This is a road game, so figure that front office staff is light: the GM, an assistant or two, random traveling secretary types. Being generous, we'll call it a complement of 60 people with the team, and then some random media guys who don't care if partying up with the team hurts their credibility. Tops -- absolute tops -- you have 75 people that could even hope to be shooting champagne over one another, though many of these people would never touch a bottle in such a situation because, really, it's the players' thing. Twenty-five cases of champagne makes for 300 bottles. I love drinkin' as much as the next guy, but ain't that overdoing it a bit? And that's before the beer cans you always see guys throwing into the celebratory shower. Oh, one more thing: The Cubs play tomorrow and the Cardinals don't, which means that they can clinch on their day off if Chicago loses to San Francisco. What the hell happens to those 300 bottles if they clinch while on a day off? Do soup kitchens take booze?I always wondered what happened to all the champagne when a team, say, loses Game 7 of the World Series. They probably bury it along with all the "World Champions" T-shirts.
The other day, a DJ on one of the Philly FM stations was running through a brief sports update, when he stopped to joke about how the Marlins now play in Land Shark Stadium. "Finally," he said, "they named a stadium after a beer!"
Finally, indeed. The St. Louis Cardinals have been playing in parks called Busch Stadium- three different ones, in fact- since 1953. Which is to say nothing of Miller Park, Coors Field, Etc. Etc.
I think the next one should be Dos Equis Park- The Most Interesting Stadium in the World.
I have no idea how to respond to this, but if it results in Sean Salisbury never being hired as a sports talking head ever again, then I'm all for it.
I have a BlackBerry. It's the new BlackBerry Tour, which I got yesterday and love so far. It's got a great interface, is fast, and can handle numerous functions my old Motorola Q couldn't (audio! video! full emails! pictures! Keys not falling off!) I figure it'll last me 2 or 3 years until Apple finally comes up with an iPhone, or something like it, for Verizon.
All these and more in the latest Week in Electronics Retail Crime column on Dealerscope.com.
It's Norton Antivirus, as endorsed by... Dokken?
Who knew Dokken had such endorsement potential? I'm guessing they were available.
I didn't realize until a few days ago that Bruce Springsteen and my father were only born a few days apart. Happy 60th birthday to both.
Tom the Dancing Bug on what's really going on:
"Mad Men": My job occasionally affords me the chance to review new products, or at least play with them, while hanging around the office. My company, thankfully, does not review lawn mowers.
Though come to think of it, my father did once represent a major lawn mower manufacturer, and they did give him a lawn mower as a gift. But he never brought it to the office, or run over anyone's foot, as far as I know.
"Curb Your Enthusiasm": Good first episode, especially with Catherine O'Hara guest-starring as "Bam Bam." I'm just wondering how they're going to solve the Loretta/cancer thing. They could have her die before Larry can break up with her- but David already went to that well with Susan dying on "Seinfeld." I'm also wondering whether the show just has too many characters at this point- there's the regulars (Larry, Cheryl, Jeff, Susie), plus the perennial guest stars (Richard Lewis, Ted Danson, Marty Funkhauser, Wanda Sykes), plus the Black Family, plus now the whole "Seinfeld" cast. That's a lot of characters for ten thirty-minute episodes.
"Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday": Aside from Bill Hader's incredible, transcendent James Carville impression, which practically had me rolling on the floor, the first episode was really weak. And between Fey-as-Palin and Poehler returning almost weekly, there's really no concept anymore as "leaving Saturday Night Live," is there? They also made a reality something I suggested last year- a Michele Bachmann impression by Kristen Wiig!- but did almost nothing with it. Hopefully the real show will be better, although I can't imagine Megan Fox possibly being funny.
"How I Met Your Mother": So, so great to have this show back. The Robin/Barney stuff wasn't that great- although the payoff was pretty good- but the whip and Tuxedo Night gags got funnier as they went on. Also, there couldn't have been a more perfect song than Vampire Weekend's "Oxford Comma."
Emmys: Very good show; Neil Patrick Harris is the best award show host alive, and he'll be doing the Oscars within two years, I guarantee it. Still, I don't see how the show had to devote an hour to miniseries- when most TV viewers don't watch more than one a year- and there is a bit too much other filler. Did Sarah McLachlan have to add a verse to "I Will Remember You," in order to keep the extra-long death montage going?
The best part of any Emmy Awards, of course, is the writing clipoff, and while Stewart deserved to win the award, the best clip was certainly Conan's. Stewart really can't lose in that category in an election year, can he?
I can't find the clip, but the NPH opening was golden:
ALOTT5MA suggests, based on the mens' resemblance, that John "Roger Sterling" Slattery be cast in a biopic of Justice Louis Brandeis. It would certainly be the best movie ever made about a 20th Century Jewish Supreme Court justice with a university named after him. That is, until Steven Spielberg's "Cardozo" finally gets off the ground.
News Item: Weezer to cover "The Rainbow Connection."
This idea has the advantage of actually really happening.
Apparently, "all pornography is homosexual pornography." Why, you ask? Take it away, Sen. Tom Coburn's chief of staff:
‘All pornography is homosexual pornography, because all pornography turns your sexual drive inwards.”Yes, that's right- masturbation is gay! So congratulations, gay community- you just gained about 7 billion new members!
There were murmurs and gasps from the crowd. “Now, think about that,” said Schwartz. “And if you tell an 11-year-old boy about that, do you think he’s going to want to get a copy of Playboy? I’m pretty sure he’ll lose interest. That’s the last thing he wants! You know, that’s a good comment, it’s a good point, and it’s a good thing to teach young people."
ESPN 950 spent much of today teasing a "major station announcement," which I figured must be the announcement of a new evening show, now that Jody MacDonald has (unfortunately) left the station and the old night host was shuffled into his spot. Instead, Mike Missanelli announced, Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson will be hosting an hour-long show, during football season, every other Monday, along with Mikey Miss.
Now leave aside that WIP has made a mockery of itself lately by bringing in ex-Eagle after ex-Eagle and throwing them on the air, even though most of them are amateurish at best and awful at worst on the air. Or Missanelli's highly, highly questionable assertion that Jackson is "the biggest name" among current Eagles (I wouldn't put him in the top five.)
Jackson is going to be on Missannelli's show every other Monday. That's not having a show. That's called being an occasional guest.
I eagerly await the announcement of "The Jason Peters Show," where the 400-pound offensive tackle weighs in on the previous Sunday's game. Check it out from 10:00 to 10:15 a.m., on the first Wednesday of every month.
Take it away, Noah Millman:
If they are inside, pissing on the sleeping bag, you aren’t going to get any sleep, you aren’t going to forget they are there, and you aren’t going to forget they are crazy. But you’re going to know where they are and what they are up to, and they are going to be warm and dry. (Warmer and drier than your sleeping bag, anyway.)
I don’t want to anybody thrown out of the GOP because they believe insane things about the President – and, by the same token, I don’t want the President to feel obliged to fire a guy who spent his career hobnobbing with nutters in San Francisco.
I want them inside the tent, pissing on the sleeping bags, so the sane people who are also inside the tent will yell at them to STOP PISSING ON THE SLEEPING BAGS!
A list of all the different kinds of hamburgers. This post made me very, very hungry.
Is she John Bolton's daughter?
I just returned tonight from a wonderful four-day trip to Minnesota, where I celebrated my dad's 60th birthday and Rosh Hashanah, went to the Metrodome for a Twins game for the last time, saw lots of family and friends, and even visited a creepy, "Shining"-like corn maze.
More blogging to come tomorrow on the NFL, the Emmys, recent TV and more.
This is one of the funnier interviews I've ever seen, as Megan gets the cold shoulder from a guy for probably the first time in her life:
I saw "Jennifer's Body" and it was surprisingly strong- despite being wildly over the top from start to finish, the backstory is actually very unique and creative,and the Diablo Cody dialogue wasn't as annoying as it could've been. It's also full of laughs, some unintentional and some not.
But Megan Fox remains the worst actress of her generation, while Amanda Seyfried is the least-convincing plain jane in a long time. And while it's supposed to be set in Minnesota, no one in the movie has the slightest trace of an accent, except for J.K. Simmons, who speaks like a "Fargo" character.
In all, certain to be a future cable classic.
I think we all made that joke in the fall- turns out it was actually true.
Funny moment from last night's Phillies game, as a guy reached over the railing to catch a foul ball, handed it to his younger daughter... and she threw it back on the field.
My other favorite thing from last night's game: Phils outfield prospect Michael Taylor sitting in in the broadcast booth for a half-inning. Never mind being ready for the majors; Taylor at this point is probably ready to be a major league broadcaster, too.
Yes, Rush is a racist, as he conflates the president with the black kids who beat someone up on a school bus this week:
"In Obama's America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering, 'Yay, right on, right on, right on, right on... I wonder if Obama's going to come to come to the defense of the assailants the way he did his friend Skip Gates up there at Harvard."
Obama, apparently, is responsible for any bad behavior by black people anywhere and everywhere in America and yes, that includes the Kanye West incident. And you were surprised he said what he did about McNabb?
Not sure I entirely agree with this, but it certainly sounds plausible.
If those videos are an accurate representation it proves that the people involved are idiots. What it does not prove is that ACORN is at the center of every dark conspiracy on Earth, nor does it show that ACORN and Barack Obama are one and the same.
Prior to the last year I primarily thought of ACORN as a lefty non-profit that specializes in pushing for legislation that never, ever gets enacted. They may be troublesome, but I can think of about a hundred special interests that are a lot more dangerous.
See the link for one of the better mug shots ever.
The Twinkies come to town, for the first time in five years, June 18-20, 2010. Luckily, they're doing it on a weekend! Can't wait.
Back from a three-week break, and recapping all the health care fun:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
And even better- the Beck Party:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
Kevin Pollak sits down with Paul and Harry from "Mad Men"! Fun fact: Rich Sommer (Harry) grew up in Stillwater, Minn., near where "Grumpy Old Men" was filmed; my grandfather had a cabin nearby as well.
I agree with Michael Kinsley. Joe Wilson's outburst was pretty weak, but come on- do we need to censure him? Let it die already.
News Item: Eagles cut Hank Baskett
My favorite headline of the fall: "Eagles activate Vick, release Playmate's husband."
No, not Jeff Garcia. The other Playmate's husband.
Some surprising violence from the Ohio state marching band:
I'm no Ohio State fan, but Script Ohio is one of the best sports traditions there is.
A phrase that often applies to PFT, as Iggles Blog points out.
It's really never, ever a good idea to collect Nazi memorabilia. Especially if you're the head of Human Rights Watch.
The Eagles, somewhat shockingly, brought back Jeff Garcia today as an emergency backup quarterback. Two weeks ago, the team had four quarterbacks, but with A.J. Feeley cut, Michael Vick suspended and Donovan McNabb injured, they're now down to just Kevin Kolb.
Garcia, of course, stepped in for an injured McNabb in 2006 and for a two-month period became one of the all-time most-beloved Philly athletes, leading the Eagles to the second round of the playoffs, and then doing what so few Philly athletes have done over the years- getting out of town at the height of his popularity and before everyone could turn on him.
Will this bring about a quarterback controversy, and undermine McNabb's "fragile confidence"? Probably not. In fact, the team pretty much had to sign a quarterback this week because going into Week 2 with one active QB (Kolb) wasn't a realistic option. By Week 3, when Vick is reinstated, or a week or two later at the latest when McNabb is ready, Garcia likely won't even be on the roster anymore.
Garcia's signing, someone pointed out on Twitter today, gives the Eagles a combined 12 career Pro Bowl appearances among its quarterbacks, although of course the only one with none, Kolb, will almost certainly start Sunday.
And yes, Garcia is still married to this woman.
Sad to see such a talent taken away at a relatively young age with a terrible disease.
Reading the Twitter and Facebook reactions, I couldn't help noticing something: which Swayze role you thought of first differs wildly, depending largely on your age, gender, life experience, political views, etc. The big three, of course, are "Dirty Dancing," "Road House," and "Red Dawn," but I'd imagine many will remember him most for "Ghost," or for "Point Break," or his hilarious "Donnie Darko" cameo, or for his famous "Chippendales" sketch with Chris Farley on SNL:
Watching that reminds me of watching a classic WWF match from the '80s or '90s and suddenly realizing in the middle of it, "hey, they're both dead."
A week away from the season premiere, I got a big kick out of this:
- So, so great to have football back. Here's how I spent my Sunday on the couch: Watching Eagles-Panthers on TV while following both the Vikings game and my two fantasy teams on ESPN, reading TweetDeck to follow Twitter and Facebook commentary on the games, while also reading RSS feeds and occasionally doing work. I also talked to my wife a few times throughout the day. Ah, a perfect Sunday.
- Slow start for the Vikings, but they ended up crushing Cleveland, of course. So great to have Adrian Peterson, even if I didn't manage to get him on either fantasy team. He needed an IV at halftime, and STILL scored three touchdowns. Brett Favre didn't seem so bad either.
- Pretty much a perfect Sunday for the Eagles, except for the part about Donovan McNabb's cracked rib. Brian Westbrook played great, the offensive line- even Winston Justice- held up, and the defense that everyone was worried about for the past three months scored seven turnovers and looked dominant throughout. Of course, the career meltdown by Jake Delhomme helped too.
- Really prescient column by Reuben Frank Sunday morning, pointing out that no, there's no reason to doubt the Eagles.
- Still, Kevin Kolb looked pretty shaky, and it's not good news for the Eagles that he has to start next week. It would be better if he had a 28-point cushion next time he came into a game, like he did Sunday. Lucky for them, McNabb is out 2-4 weeks, Michael Vick is back in Week 3, and their bye week is Week 4. Still, they're talking about bringing back A.J. Feeley for next week, and maybe even Jeff Garcia.
- Speaking of KK Philly athletes, bad day for Kyle Kendrick. He simultaneously pitched the best game of his career, and not a single person in Philadelphia watched it.
- When asked in the press conference how many ribs McNabb cracked, Reid replied, "one rib." Who knew he was an "I'm Gonna Git You Sucka" fan?
- If I were an Eagles fan, I'd be worried about the Giants, a little less so about the Cowboys, and not at all about the Redskins.
- Who knew Bears-Packers would be such a defensive battle? It was almost 3-2 at halftime.
- I've got a feeling this Wildcat thing is a passing fad that will be totally gone by next year.
- Horrible, horrible commercials all around. Come to think of it, I don't know who had a worse Sunday- Jake Delhomme, or Tom Arnold.
- Sean Salisbury apparently got fired again. It's so great not to have to see him on TV anymore.
I review the excellent "Extract" on Philly.com.
So let me get this straight: Glenn Beck, who is an employee of Fox News, organized a rally of thousands of people, and then anchored coverage of said rally on the network. Can we now officially retire the "Fair and Balanced" slogan? Or take the "News" out of Fox? How can they continue to pretend what they're doing is anything besides advocacy?
As for the protest itself, these are conservatives protesting deficits, debt, and government authoritarianism- all of which took place for eight years of Bush-Cheney, and none of which occasioned a protest by the Teabaggers. It is, quite simply, the Anti-Obama Movement- a full-fledged protest against the president's very existence. Leaving aside the Nazi comparisons, the birther garbage, the "Bury Obama With Kennedy," and all the rest- it's simply a reaction against a pretend version of Obama who doesn't really exist. A protest against taxes that haven't been raised, ideas that haven't been or never will be proposed, etc.
Patrick Goldstein has a valuable roundup of the attempted boycott of the Toronto Film Festival, for the unspeakable crime of showcasing Israeli filmmakers. It's one thing to criticize things the Israeli government has done lately- but to take it out on filmmakers is nothing short of insane. It would be like banning Martin Scorsese from Cannes because you didn't like Bush as president.
The worst part:
Earlier this year, for example, Ken Loach, one of England's most venerated filmmakers, urged a boycott of the Edinburgh International Film Festival because the festival was slated to premiere a movie by an Israeli filmmaker and was paying his way to the festival.That's right, a boycott that had nothing to do with the film's politics, just that its director was an Israeli. Disgusting.
His complaints had nothing to do with the film's politics, or lack of them. Loach's beef was with the Israeli government, saying "the massacres and state terrorism in Gaza make this money unacceptable." He urged everyone to "show their support for the Palestinian nation and stay away."
"The Red Zone Channel is like watching porn without any plot. Just random guys pounding it into the end zone. I feel dirty."- PTI producer Erik Rydholm, via Twitter. I was all excited about the channel until I discovered it was premium and not covered by my cable. Boo.
Hard to believe it's been eight years since that horrible day. I don't have a whole lot to add that I haven't already on previous anniversaries, but let's not ever forget that day or the many people who lost their lives.
From Bill Simmons' really good NFL preview column, on the real reason NFL teams are having trouble selling tickets this year:
For many fan bases, here are the two choices every Sunday:Sitting in front of the TV, with my laptop open to follow all the games plus my two fantasy teams- damn, I can't wait for Sunday!
Door No. 1 (more expensive): Traffic, parking, long walk to stadium, lousy seats, lifeless state-of-the-art arena, TV timeouts, dead crowds, drunk/bitter fans, more TV timeouts, hiked-up concession prices, PDAs with jammed signals as you're searching for scores, even more TV timeouts, long walk to car, even more traffic.
Door No. 2 (less expensive): Sofa, NFL package, HD, fantasy scores online, remote control toggling, gambling, access to scores, seven straight hours of football, cell phone calls, beer and food in fridge, no traffic.
I can see going through Door No. 1 once a year just to remind yourself that going to an NFL game sucks. But eight times a year? Unless you had good seats, or unless this was your only excuse to get out of your house and get plastered, why would you?
The legendary Hollywood writer passed away today at the age of 81. He's perhaps best known for "MASH," but he also did quite a bit of Broadway work, including the gem of a musical "City of Angels."
Asshole NBA writer Peter Vecsey reportedly gave a legendarily awful speech at the basketball Hall of Fame last night that was so atrocious that Michael Jordan walked out- and the league appears to have suppressed the videotape. From Jeff Pearlman's account:
Throughout his 32-year career covering hoops, Vecsey boasts an unparalleled record of alienation. This is just a guess, but I’d say 90-95 percent of players dislike him. I’d say 97-99 percent of coaches and owners dislike him. And, among his peers in the media … uh, well … yeah. Not a good track record. The problem, to be blunt, is this: Vecsey has never come off as a particularly nice person. His writing is snide and dismissive; his tone that of a know-it-all third grader. He’s extremely combative, and (this is a guess, admittedly) would rather try and throw punches than engage in an actual intellectual discourse. That Vecsey writes for the Post is appropriate: He and the newspaper deserve one another.All that, on top of being wrong about every major story for years. I just hope that videotape surfaces eventually.
News Item: Motorola announces CLIQ mobile phone.
It's about "the controversy."
The baby having grown-up Obama's head is my favorite part.
Howard Eskin, the other day, spent an entire hour bitching about... what Michael Vick was wearing when he addressed Philadelphia schoolkids that morning. I missed the beginning, but Eskin was arguing that Vick should've been dressed in a more dignified manner for this appearance, and had embarrassed himself with what he wore. As is his wont, Eskin spent the hour arguing about this with callers.
I hadn't seen the footage yet, but after hearing this I assumed Vick had shown up in some sort of gangsta gear or something, something for which Eskin- from his years of feuding with Allen Iverson- has very little patience. A little later I saw it, and here's what Vick was wearing:
Clearly our children must be protected from dog-killing quarterbacks in button-down shirts and black pants!
What a great performance by the president. He sounded forceful and confident on health care, in a way he didn't for all of August. He described the plan in detail, in a way that he hadn't before, and wasn't afraid to call out those who have lied about death panels and other such mythical creatures.
Not the finest hour for the GOP, whether it was those signs they were waving- no one watching could read what they said- Eric Cantor glancing at his BlackBerry on camera, or that Congressman who heckled, something I don't remember any Democrat ever doing to Bush.
And again- why not evoke Ted Kennedy? It's an issue he was associated with for decades in the Senate, and he would've wanted Obama to do exactly what he did tonight.
Should be a fascinating few weeks of legislating. Can't wait to see how it shakes out.
The best part of the night, a clear shot at the Wicked Witch of Wasilla:
A great column by Jonathan Chait on the trouble with "centrist compromises":
The fetishization of compromise often overlooks whether such a compromise makes any inherent sense. Not all issues lend themselves to compromise. Joe Lieberman recently piped up that he prefers to take minor steps on health care--such as banning insurance company discrimination against those with preexisting conditions--and forego covering the uninsured.
But, if you forbid insurance companies from discriminating against the sick without bringing healthy people into the risk pool, then healthy people would have no reason to buy insurance.
They could just wait until they get sick and take out a policy, and the insurance companies would have to sell them one. Rates would skyrocket, and the whole system would become unaffordable. Some say we should build a bridge across a river. Others say we shouldn’t. Joe Lieberman wants to build a bridge halfway across.
He's back! And he introduced a cool-looking line of new iPods, and some other bells and whistles as well- (Madden for the iPhone!) Here's E-Gear's writeup.
Here's what I don't get- there's so much interest in these Apple events, so why don't they make them available as live webcasts? That standing O for Jobs looks like it would've been awesome to watch in person. Here's the after-the-fact video:
If you're not reading "Don't Even Reply," you absolutely should be. Brilliant, brilliant stuff.
"Elizabeth Edwards on Olbermann, to make the case that HC reform must include mandatory abortions for mistresses."-Dave Weigel, via Twitter.
Michael Kinsley attacks the fact-checking profession:
The fad for elaborate and abject corrections, and factual accuracy in general, is based on the misperception that when people complain about the media getting it all wrong, what bothers them is that the newspaper identified the mountain inside Denali National Park as Mount Denali (as it is "referred to by many," the Times defensively put it the other day) and not by its official name of Mount McKinley... What bothers people is the refusal of the Times and other papers to call President Obama a socialist or a Muslim, or to say outright that talk radio hosts are vermin. In short, most complainers tend to be ideologues whose vision of an accurate newspaper is far different from that of the professionals.That's just the way it is, and no ombudsman can do anything about it.
On the AV Club, Chuck Klosterman reviews the new Beatles remastered set, only in doing so he pretends to be a complete moron who knows nothing about the band. Great stuff. And speaking of Chuck, check out the wonderful FakeKlosterman on Twitter.
Will I be getting the new discs? Nah. I love the Beatles, but really, how much can you improve it? It's the best music ever!
I look into how everyone forgot about Godwin's Law, in this week's North Star column.
I slam "Big Fan" in this week's Philly.com review.
What's the most underrated moment in sports? The stadium implosion, of course! Here's a YouTube slideshow of some of the more memorable ones. The Vet:
That'll happen to the Metrodome within a few years, I'm sure. Speaking of which, Scott Miller has a lengthy tribute to the old monstrosity, including some great stories, some of which I hadn't even heard before.
Reason #5,008 to be excited about Target Field: there's going to be a bar there called Hrbek's!
Want to know how every character in every "Seinfeld" episode is connected? Now you know.
Balloon Juice, on this story that New Jersey gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie once got away with hitting someone with his car without charges being filed:
I love stories like this because they get to the heart of what a fucked up world we live in. If you’re black, you get hauled down to the station for sassing cops. If you’re poor enough, you get sent to the chair when your children die in a tragic accident. But if you’re the right kind of person, you can spend your life smashing into other motorists or running Ponzi schemes or torturing people and no one will say boo.
My parents ran into Al Franken at the Minnesota State Fair last week; this discussion, which if you ask me is the right way to handle discussion about health care, apparently ensued not long after:
On the Jones thing, I defer to Conor Friedersdorf:
Oh Van Jones, your past is so absurd that you’ve managed to align Glenn Beck and mainstream opinion! Is the Obama Administration unaware that a frighteningly large minority of citizens imagine that the president secretly harbors radical Marxist impulses that he intends to surreptitiously advance via the federal bureaucracy? It’s as though George W. Bush appointed a guy who spent years prior publicly agitating for the invasion of Iraq in order to seize its oil fields and establish an imperial foothold in the Middle East. (Heh.)But wait- it might not have actually been a 9/11 Truth petition! (And yes, I just linked to LGF for exculpatory evidence for a liberal.)
I’m surprised to see so many voices in the left blogosphere defending Mr. Jones. I’d normally be sympathetic to a guy who gets forced out of government for a faux-outrage controversy unrelated to his official duties. But this is the rare instance where, if you explained the past actions at issue to the average apolitical person, they’d regard the guy as someone who shouldn’t be entrusted to do any government job that affords a lot of discretion over millions of dollars, and any outrage they felt wouldn’t be faux.
The last word on the ridiculous Obama school speech "controversy":
Amid my latest electronics retail crime update- lots of iPod and iPhone theft this week- is the story of one of my neighbors. A guy who lives about a mile away from me in Broomall was arrested for shoplifting from a Best Buy in nearby Springfield. Electronics retail crime- it's closing in on all of us!
This tumblr-style blog from the iSportacus guys had me laughing for several minutes. Though it's not appreciably different from what WIP does with a straight face every day. It's the best thing of its kind since Obama is Literally Hitler.
Brian Lowry of Variety, on "All About Steve":
“Cooper’s character proves utterly bland, and [Thomas Haden] Church’s take on the unctuous news guy makes you wonder if he’d rather jump back a couple of movies, transform into sand and quietly ooze away.”Great title notwithstanding, this movie looked noxious and awful, even as I saw it prior to "The Proposal," another Bullock movie that actually wasn't that bad. By the way, congrats to Lowry, definitely the first Variety critic to ever win FCQOTD.
You have to be this guy. Still, way to go Joe. Mika must be a good influence.
Obama's back-to-school message to kids is "socialist indoctrination"? Really, GOP?
I'm there will be all sorts of interpretations from Philly's amateur Donovanologists- "the waitress represents Michael Vick," etc.
I got a press release yesterday advertising a new documentary film called "Twilight in Forks." It took me a minute to remember that the town in "Twilight" is called Forks and that that's what the movie is about; my first thought was that it was a gimmick movie- sort of "Superstar" or "Thumbs Wars"- in which "Twilight" was re-enacted with forks playing all of the characters.
Bill Simmons writes his first Vegas column in years. My favorite part:
When I used to fly to Sin City, it always gave me a rush when my plane descended and we could glimpse the casinos for the first time. (For one March Madness trip coming from Boston, we were landing at night and someone screamed out, "VEH-GAAAAAAAS!!!!" and started applauding. Half the plane started clapping with him. Name me another city that causes this reaction. You can't.)I can think of one place- Israel. Not sure if this is par for the course on El-Al, but when our plane landed in '95, there was certainly a round of applause.
Which makes someone more like Hitler- proposing universal health care, or, uh, actually defending Hitler?
News Item: Curt Schilling considering Senate run
I expect this formula- ex-athlete from the state running for office as a Republican, even though he's clearly not up to it- working about as well as it did for Lynn Swann in his Pennsylvania gubernatorial bid. I mean, do you remember this?
Here's a piece everyone concerned with the health care debate should read- a column by T.R. Reid on how the different health care systems around the world differ from one another, and from ours- and how most of what you think you know about "socialism" and "rationing" is a whole bunch of fiction.
Paul Waldman, on the bad actors of the health care debate:
We all tend to caricature our political opponents. And we assume that their problem is not just that their solutions are misguided but that their motives are dark and sinister. This assumption is usually a mistake. Like many people, I spent eight years railing against George W. Bush. But in the end, I concluded that for all his faults of character and epic screw-ups, he was trying to do what he thought was best for the country. Bush was wrong about virtually all of it, but he was not evil (his vice president may be another story).
But what is one to conclude about political figures whose ends seem as indefensible as their means? Who will appeal to the worst in their fellow citizens, who will lie without remorse ? and for what? So that the number of Americans without health insurance can swell past 50 million, while insurance companies rake in billions in profits?
One can have honest disagreements about the many measures we might take to reform our health-care system. But one cannot say that this system should be allowed to continue, and still claim to be a moral human being with a functioning conscience. Whether reform succeeds or fails in the end, we should not forget what this debate was like and should judge all who participated accordingly.
The movie's screenwriter tells the story of the girl behind the girl. That's one movie that could only have been based on a true story.
Steve Rushin goes into some "which came first?" questions. I always wondered the exact order of creation for Rolling Stone/The Rolling Stones/"Papa Was a Rolling Stone."
Beavis and Butt-head come out of retirement to extoll the new movie by their creator, Mike Judge:
I saw "Extract" last night, and it was surprisingly very funny. Probably the funniest Ben Affleck has ever been, outside of Kevin Smith or SNL appearances.
Iggles Blog, whacking Mike Florio:
Mike Vick isn't even close to being the type of quarterback Donovan McNabb is.This reminds me of last year, when McNabb had tendonitis during July mini-camp and everyone on the radio screamed that "THIS WILL BE AN ISSUE ALL SEASON!" The tendonitis went away sometime in August and it was never spoken of again.
Especially in this offense and especially from a "future" perspective, where the team finally has the type of game-breaking receiving talent that demands a pass-first QB.
A lot of the discussion that has swirled along these lines has made it pretty clear there are actually two kinds of quarterback controversies out there.
The first, a "quarterback controversy," happens whenever fans and pundit decree one into existence. "The Eagles signed Mike Vick? They must be tired of McNabb!" "McNabb threw a couple passes into the ground? Let's boo him and call for Vick! That'd be AWESOME!!!"
Fortunately for the Eagles, Andy Reid doesn't really care much what people outside the locker room think, so we don't have to worry about that having an impact on how the season goes.
The second kind of controversy is the Actual Quarterback Controversy. It should be noted that this only takes place when:
• Two quarterbacks of similar skill levels play for the same team.
• Neither quarterback distinguishes himself to the extent that he grabs the job.
• Generally speaking, the coach himself is worried about his own skin and starting to get desperate.
If you're grading at home, that would be: "False, Nope, and Uh-uh." So we can safely dismiss all the ink Florio spills on the issue filling up space between posts about agent tweets and items rewriting stories that already appeared somewhere else.
Canis Hoopus, on Rubio:
The Alpha and Omega in any discussion about Rubio and the Wolves is to answer the following question: What else was David Kahn supposed to have done? Had he passed on Rubio with not one but two lottery picks, he would have been ripped for not selecting the BPA. Had he selected Rubio and traded him to the Knicks, he would have been ripped for exhibiting nepotism with his former boss (to say nothing of the lopsided nature of any Knicks-based deal that could be offered). Had he picked Rubio and traded him for the rumored Houston package, he would have been ripped for not getting maximum value out of a hot commodity. Had he made an under-the-table deal with Joventut, he would have been ripped for giving the Wolves and their fans Joe Smith 2.0. On this particular issue, Kahn is to his critics as Barack Obama is to Glenn Beck: He's going to lose no matter what he does so why worry about the criticism?
No, not really.
- I thought we were done with Ashley the Teenage Anorexic Alien, but oh no- she's back!
- While it's always great to see Peter Stormare, I'm not sure what accent he was going for, but he sounded the farthest thing in the world from Israeli, and...
- The Gary Cole character wins over Aaron Sorkin by... quoting one of his "West Wing" lines. Gary Cole was ON "The West Wing"! Not until after Sorkin left the show, but still...
Not to mention that it's not funny or compelling, the stalker plot is going nowhere, etc.
I look into the "outrage" over the Democrats pursuing legislation in memory of a man who always supported that legislation, in a new North Star column.
Yes, Michele Bachmann is completely insane. But you knew that already.
Reuben Frank, the rare Eagles observer who actually knows what he's talking about, on the "quarterback controversy":
It's amazing how people can conjure up a controversy out of nothing. And this is truly nothing. You might not want to hear this, because conspiracy theories are always more fun than the truth. But Donovan McNabb is still glad Michael Vick is here. He's still excited about the possibilities Vick brings to the offense. And he’s still willing to move around from snap to snap to accommodate the three-time Pro Bowl quarterback once he returns from his undetermined NFL suspension.Certain other people, however, would rather just invent stuff like this out of whole cloth.
And if anybody tells you otherwise, don't believe him. Just because McNabb asked offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg during the preseason game against the Jaguars to let him run the offense for a while without Vick shuttling on and off the field does not mean McNabb hates Vick, it doesn't mean he's jealous of Vick, and it doesn't mean he doesn't want to share the spotlight with Vick. People who are actually around the team and talk to McNabb know that McNabb's desire to get in a few series against Jacksonville Thursday night does not mean McNabb doesn't want Vick on the field with him once Vick's suspension is lifted
He's coming out with a best-of collection! And it has the awesome title "Fly Fishing with Darth Vader: And Other Adventures with Evangelical Wrestlers, Political Hitmen, and Jewish Cowboys." Can't wait.
Brett Favre looked much better last night than in the first preseason game, as the Vikings beat the Chiefs and actually gave us a glimpse of the "kick-ass offense" that Childress has been promising for years. As long as handing the ball off to Adrian Peterson for a touchdown on the first play of the game remains a part of the plan all year.
News Item: Twins "have enough money" to extend Mauer
So let's do it! Joe is the LeBron James of baseball, a 25-ish superstar playing in his hometown who everyone in the big-city bigger markets is salivating over. Because after all, if you're a Yankees fan, you have a realistic expectation that every great player in the game will someday be yours.
However, I have every expectation that the Twins will kick off the Target Field era with a big contract for Mauer this offseason. I'm sure Mauer will decide to dedicate the next 7 or 8 or 9 years to bringing a championship to the hometown team, and maybe when he's 35 he'll want to scratch the New York or Boston itch.
Reminds me- when I was at the game in Kansas City this summer, a guy in the mens' room saw my Twins jersey and asked when Mauer was eligible for free agency. Even if he did make it free agency, you really think the Royals would be a player for him?
Sort of sucks to get nothing out of the #5 pick for two years, and it's a sad commentary on the NBA that teams in smaller market not only can't attract free agents, but not international players from the draft either. BUT, perhaps the team will actually be a contender in two years when Rubio can come to the States. In the meantime, prepare for another year of an indifferent fan base and empty Target Center.
If any other comic in the world did this routine word for word, you'd say they bombed spectacularly. Not Norm MacDonald:
Ask yourself: if you, in your own profession, made a mistake equivalent to trading for Yuniesky Betancourt, would you expect to be fired, or given five years of lucrative job security?I always wondered why people who were so successful in business- like Daniel Snyder, Tom Hicks, and Walmart CEO-turned-Royals owner David Glass- could be such blithering idiots when it comes to running teams.
Ask yourself something else: how is the guy who runs the most successful corporation on the planet capable of making a judgment like "Moore has the organization pointed in the right direction"?
The best thing about this idea is that it would seem to prevent movies that a substantial group of people hated- i.e., "Crash"- from ever winning Best Picture again.