Wednesday, April 15, 2009

They fooled me!

So its been a month or so since I last posted, and frankly only one noteworthy occurrence has taken place in my life: I got a job. Huzzah.

The only other accomplishment I can claim is that I have successfully completed Season 1 of the CBS hit, "How I Met Your Mother".
The show came highly recommended by very trustworthy colleagues-whose taste and style come without question. So I Netflix'd it. And after spending time watching it with friends and family, I was hooked. The characters are easy to identify with, the scenarios are campy and funny in that network sitcom sorta way, and the portrayal of life as a young person living in "the city" is quite accurate and hits close to home for me. The shows' All-Star is "Barney"--the arrogant, womanizing, ego-maniac friend who happens to be played by Neil Patrick Harris...aka NPH, aka Doogie Howser MD; who hilariously steals every scene. I had enjoyed the show so much that I watched the entire first season, and then committed to watching the entire first season AGAIN with my mom and sister on Easter Sunday.
(I know, sounds kinda lame, but my mom made me go to church on Easter--so hungover from Saturday night--I just wanted to lay on the couch after the service and "press play" on something that would play for a long time)
This is when my crush on "How I Met Your Mother" ended.
Somewhere around the end of disc 2 of season 1 my sister casually said to me "You like a girls show". She meant this in a joking manner, and I totally defended the manliness of my show selection, but right then I realized, "How I Met Your Mother" fooled me.
And like the detectives from the Usual Suspects it all began peicing together in my mind.
  • The main character is a HUGE vagine
  • all the characters in the show (except Barney - the NPH character) are all lovey-dovey
  • every episode ends in some over the top romantic observation designed to evoke an "awwwwww" reaction from girls
  • Jason Segel (of Forgetting Sara Marshall frontal nudity fame) is cheesier and less funny than any character he has played in a long time
  • I really only watch the show to see and hear what Barney(NPH) will do or say
  • and lastly, and most obviously, the show now runs in syndication on Lifetime
You know that emoticon of the guy with the straight face...all stoic-like. Thats me. Thats how serious I am right now. I just figured out that Kevin Spacey is Keyser Soze. If you dont believe me, go back and watch an episode of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia". I dare you to tell me that "How I Met Your Mother" is NOT a pussified, Lifetime channel version of "It's Always Sunny..."
Ill still watch the show to celebrate this contemporary NPH era we are experiencing in pop-culture, but I will no longer allow the devil to convince me that "How I Met Your Mother" isn't a girls show.

Friday, March 13, 2009


Pwn is a leetspeak slang term, derived from the verb "own", as meaning to appropriate or to conquer to gain ownership. The term implies domination or humiliation of a rival - Wikipedia definition

Miley Cryus...PWNED!
"When Miley grows up, she'll learn not to have such a sense of entitlement"
-The response from Radiohead regarding remarks made by Miley Cyrus after the rock band's refusal to meet the tween pop-star at the Grammys.

Jim Cramer...PWNED!
"I understand that you want to make finance entertaining, but it's not a fucking game"
-Jon Stewart's criticism of Jim Cramer and CNBC on the March 12th Daily Show interview(pt 1 of 2, part 2 of 2)

Sacramento Kings...PWNED!
14-50, .219, 37.5
-wins and losses, winning percentage, games back

Bernie Madoff...PWNED!
"Madoff Goes to Jail After Guilty Pleas"
-New York Times Headline in March 12th Business Section

Oakland A's...PWNED!
"We have fully exhausted our time and resources over the years with the City of Oakland"
-Oakland A's Managing Partner Lewis Wolff announcing he wants to move the baseball franchise out of Oakland

"Tower Records, which played a big role in the history of retail music sales, filed for bankruptcy in 2004 and 2006. It shut down its U.S. stores in 2006."
-quote from MSNBC article metaphorically titled "Old Tower Records Sign Comes Down"

Jonas Brothers, Disney, Greys Anatomy, Christianity...PWNED!
"You HAVE to wear the purity rings because thats how we sell SEX to little girls"
-Mickey Mouse, before delivering beatdown to JoBros (full episode here)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Outside Lands 2009!

In case you haven't heard, the Bay Area promotional company, Another Planet, has announced that amidst heated debate and speculation, its late-summer San Francisco music festival "Outside Lands" will make a return in 2009. It was released Tuesday, March 3, that the Outside Lands Music+Arts Festival will return to Golden Gate Park, August 28-30; with an extended lineup on the opening day (Friday), more local food, more wine and more eco-shit.
Aside from hoping they have more port-o-potties, beer tents, running buses and exits/entrances; I really hope they have lineup of musical acts greater than, or equal to Outside Lands 2008.
If you're like me, your immediate thought after hearing or seeing the announced dates was something like "I wonder who's gonna headline?!?" Well, festival promoter Another Planet has not yet given up any details, but the speculation has begun.
Let's start by assessing last year's headliners:

Radiohead - biggest act in modern rock, eclectic rock sound, tons of alt/rock-cred
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers - cross-generationally popular, classic guitar-rock with tons of 'sing-a-long' capability
Jack Johnson - universally popular surf-rock, tons of collaboration-ability, very mellow - perfect for a Sunday

Unless I've totally missed something, these bands were your 2008 Outside Lands headliners.
Knowing what we know about the 1-yr history of the festival, the city, and the current state of modern music; who are the candidates to headline the Outside Lands Music+Arts Festival in 2009?

Here are some of my top candidates:

  • Paul McCartney
  • Dave Mathews Band
  • The Killers
  • Kanye West
  • Daft Punk
  • Neil Young
  • Depeche Mode
  • Pearl Jam

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Hall of Famer or F student?

Dating back to my days in college when my roommates and I didn't have cable, I have been watching Maury Povich, or I like to call him, for years now.
First, Id like to recognize that The Maury Povich show is pure trash. Garbage...I know; and I can come up with no other reason for watching the show other than pure boredom. But if I ever become famous, and someone asks me at a press conference if/why I ever watched MoPo, Ill say I was "young and naive" and then blame it on my cousin.
The bread & butter of the MoPo power hour is the incredibly entertaining "Are you my babies daddy? - DNA Testing"...which never gets old for me really. Fantastic stuff. But every once in a while Maury will switch it up and have a show dedicated to guessing which of the 8-10 guests on his show were born men, and which were born women. Its quite simple really. Maury introduces a guest, usually adorned in a fancy gown for the ball he/she will never be invited to, then asks the audience..."Man or Woman?"
Watching this spectacle today, and playing along with the MoPo studio audience, I began to ask myself--what is a good success rate in the "Man or Woman" game?
Obviously a perfect success rate is probably ideal in your own personal life...I gotta imagine one "wrong" guess, is one too many. But in the Maury Povich "Man or Woman?" I went 5 for 9.
Thats an F - 55%. But in baseball terms, thats a .555 batting average. Im a Hall of Famer.

So my questions is: what is considered a good success rate when playing the "Man or Woman?" game?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Im So Over Journey...and other thoughts

Percentage of Sacramento bars that feel like you're on the set of a "straight to DVD" movie - 85%

Coldplay is the Applebee's of pop music...boring, bland, cookie cutter, production line drivel. According to my friend Conrad, "Coldplay is hella puss-core"

I like Kanye's frollet - (frollet = afro+mullet).

Straight males: if you've watched the movie "He's Just Not That Into You"; punch yourself ON the penis.

Valentine's Day...uggggghhhhhh

We all know that Comcast is terrible, but everytime I call to bitch them out their customer service people treat me so kindly I end up just agreeing with everything they say and kinda wishing we could be friends. God I suck.

Id like to conduct an experiment: how many 20-something whiteboys can you fit into a room before Journey begins playing inexplicably? Although I do not have an answer to this question, I have reason to believe that alcohol appears to be a catalyst.

Myspace is so worthless to me.

I consider myself pretty well-versed in pop-culture. I read the occasional trash blog, I watch "The Soup" and skim the headlines of the tabloids when I go to the grocery store. So how is it that I have never heard a song, hook or even a chorus by either Miley Cyrus or The Jonas Brothers? Aren't they like the most famous people ever right now?

Im so bored with sports right now. Specifically, the Sacramento Kings. How could a team and a sport I once loved so dearly, be so excruciatingly painful to watch now?

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Denny's is a Genius!

With my newfound abundance of time, I have taken up many new hobbies, my favorite being amateur advertising and marketing analysis. Ive noticed myself becoming increasingly aware of advertising campaigns and branding trends, which may have a direct correlation with the amount of time Im spending on the internet and watching TV, but that can be neither confirmed nor denied.
It seems the biggest trend in American advertising is "understanding the economic crisis". It is quite posh for companies to show they care about you during these tough economic times, in varying degrees of obviousness. Hyundai will let you give your car back if you lose your job, cities are organizing half-off gift certificates to local businesses, and Cash 4 Gold is working hard to rip off old people...I mean, "give" old people cash in exchange for their gold and jewels. But the real winner in marketing's economic crisis-a-thon is America's last option in breakfast, Denny's. Let's be real with ourselves for a second, unless you're Mike Murphy, you haven't been to Denny's in a long time, and when you consider your dine-out options, ANYTHING is a better option...Im talking like sketchy Indian buffet at 9am--and it has been like this for a long time. But it is now 2009, Barack is prez and Denny's has decided it is time for change!(in marketing, not food).

Taking the advice of White House Cheif of Staff, Rahm Emmanuel; Denny's is not letting this "crisis go to waste". Advertising (for the first time) during the super bowl that they would be giving away their signature meal, the Grand Slam, FOR FREE on the coming Tuesday. Thus resulting in a 3-pronged effect of introducing/reintroducing Denny's to the American people, showing the people that Denny's unerstands the current economic crisis and empathizes with us, and sets the free shit give-away bar at $5.99. Brilliant AND awesome.
But the true genius is in the just one day to generate the time-sensitive word of mouth buzz. And judging by the turnout (2 million people in America) the hype machine is extremely effective in short bursts. Im talking about it, local news statsions are talking about it, even the late night talk show hosts are talking about it. All the while Denny's has quietly begun a modest post-free Grand Slam ad campaign reminding us that they were there for us in our time of need. Well played Denny's, well played.
So my challenge to IHOP, what are YOU going to do to help us through these trying times?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

H8 the New Kanye ya'll

I really like Kanye West.
Hes a self-centered ego-maniac with delusions of grandeur, but I dont care. In fact, I think I like him more because those things. I can't really come up with a sound explanation as to why this is.
Hes reached music's pinnacle as a producer and MC all by age 30, and hes a total dick. He sets some of America's lamest trends with his pink sweater vests, Louie V and shutter shades, yet there isn't a single thing about that that turns me off. And along with the critics, I genuinely like every one of his albums.
Kanye pretty much has carte blanche to do and say whatever the fuck he wants without hurting public oppinion or "cred".
But I hate his new album - Like, a lot.
(you know what Im talking about...)

Cher kinda started it with that "Do you bel-IEve in life after love" song. But how much are you going to go out of your way to listen to Cher on purpose? Lil Wayne pretty much went overboard with it on his latest album, forcing everyone to say to themselves "god I really hope this doesn't 'get hot' even though I know it will"--and then Kanye said, "what the hell, Ill make a whole album with this shit!"
Kanye, in a supposed homage to Phil Collins(wtf?) appears to have an infatuation with sounding like a robot...and a horrible singer at the same time. In case you haven't heard it; its basically an R&B album, with the typical emo-ish Kanye lyrics, then double-teamed by Radiohead's "Fitter, Happier" and ProTools. Its insufferable.
But the numbers don't lie - "808's & Heartbreak" peaked at #1 on the Billboard charts, and currently rests at #5. And once again, it appears no critic can phase King Kanye's midas touch.