Monday, May 31, 2004

Happy Memorial Day - especially to Grandpa

In tribute of Memorial Day, I'd like to make special mention of my grandpa, Private Eugene Markland, a high school drop out who served during the good 'ol dubya dubya two transporting artillery in the South Pacific theater... in the sh*t, so to speak, of the Philipines, the Falkan Islands, etc. It should be noted that he was, at one point, a Corporal, but was demoted after going AWOL so he could see his newborn son, my dad, back in the states. Before being shipped off to war, he was promised that when his wife Dorothy gave birth that he'd be able to fly back... but, when the time came the military changed its mind... not much changes, huh? Upon his return to service, he was demoted to Private.

That was way back in 1942. On May 16th, 2004, four sons, five grandkids, four great grandkids, and sixty two years later, my grandpa, Eugene Markland, along with a number of other World War II vets, was finally awarded a high school diploma. He even wore a gown and hat.

(Among his bits of wisdom include lines like, "I know they can't help it if they're ugly, but they don't have to go outside.")

Happy Memorial Day.

Chalup America!

Brought back from the dead!

Last night Claire and I came home from a friends barbque. I fired up my laptop, to be confronted with a dread inducing "blue screen of death".


This sounded bad.

I restarted in "safe mode". The blue screen still came up. I tossed in my "boot disk" also to no avail.

I went to sleep, fearing that I had lost everything on my computer. That reinstalling my system from scratch would mean I'd lose all of the thousands of illegal downloads I had, not to mention a number of posters I'd made. Somehow I managed to block it from memory and went to sleep... and ended up having a bunch of nightmares involving me being attacked by bears, and also being taken prisoner by Iraqi insurgents.

When I woke up, I used Claire's computer (a Mac, no less), to type UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME into Yahoo! The first result was "quick fix" page, saying this wasn't terribly uncommon, and gave a few simple steps to fix it.

After about fifteen minutes following the instructions, my computer was back up, no blue screen... God Bless America.

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Strange searches

I've been finding some of the "hits" I've been getting to this site kind of fascinating. One of the neat things I can do is track where people have clicked through to me from - like from my web address in an email message or another blog. The one's I find most interesting are those from Google and Yahoo! searches, where this web site pops up in the results from some of the following search items:

McDonalds Fruit and Walnut Salad
Rudy's Hot Dogs - Toledo
Kari Newhouse Lit at Both Ends

The Kari Newhouse one isn't that odd... but I wonder what people are hoping to find here when they're searching for the Fruit and Walnut Salad or Rudy's Hot Dogs?

Friday, May 28, 2004


Last night I had a dream that Bunny McIntosh was trying to seduce me. This was my first "blogger" dream ever, and somewhere in the middle of it Tony Pierce, the Los Angeles based mayor of blogdom, also popped up (walking by, no porn cameo). I have never, ever, met either of them.

Bunny McIntoshNo suprise about Bunny, though. She was the blogger who first got me interested in the scene. I was browsing through photos on Friendster a few months ago and found her profile. The shot (at left) of her in the nurse outfit made me into an instant fan. I'm a sucker for red heads... and nurses outfits. And a redhead in a nurses outfit? Of course, in her blog, the address of which was listed in her Friendster profile, she writes that its actually her Halloween costume as an abortionist - note the blood - not terribly sexy. Well...

Unfortunately, reality stumbled into the dream. I already HAVE a girlfriend (pleasantly also a redhead). And while I enjoyed every touch, kiss, and move Bunny made in the dream, I had to resist with all my might. And also drifting through my dreaming mind is that another favorite blogger, Katzinjammer, is dating Bunny... so I felt like I would also be sort of betraying a friend, along with my girl Claire.

I wish I could share some hot and heavy details of everything she was trying to do to me, but that would be rude to Bunny, and quite simply, too exciting for my blog. Besides, my dad and sister read this stuff.

In the end, nothing happened besides that I woke up and told Claire about the dream. Of course, if it was one of the dreams where I don't remember having a girlfriend and more happens, I wouldn't share. But, telling your girlfriend that you're resisting another woman's advances, even in a dream, can be a good thing.

Bunny McIntosh -

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Tony Pierce's "the honest bloggers-only quiz"

I don't usually participate in these things, but this quiz was put together by the Mayor of Blogdom, Tony Pierce at Busblog, an unapologetic Christian liberal. He also remains the greatest blogger out there.

Feel free to cut and paste your own results in the comments section... or just leave a link to it there.


1. which political party do you typically agree with? On social issues, Democrats, on most everything else, the Republicans.

2. which political party do you typically vote for? Democrats

3. list the last five presidents that you voted for? Gore, Clinton, Bush... too young to add more.

4. which party do you think is smarter about the economy? they're both equally self serving.

5. which party do you think is smarter about domestic affairs? Democrat

6. do you think we should keep our troops in Iraq or pull them out? Replace them with U.N. peacekeepers, and provide them with back up. Until then... stay.

7. who, or what country, do you think is most responsible for 9/11? Al Qaeda.

8. do you think we will find weapons of mass destruction in iraq? Perhaps on a small, irrelevent scale.

9. yes or no, should the u.s. legalize marijuana? Yes.

10. do you think the republicans stole the last presidental election? No.

11. do you think bill clinton should have been impeached because of what he did with monica lewinski? Does anyone? I thought the "bone" of contention was that he lied about it... but for that that, absolutely not.

12. do you think hillary clinton would make a good president? Yes.

13. name a current democrat who would make a great president: John Edwards

14. name a current republican who would make a great president: John McCain

15. do you think that women should have the right to have an abortion? Absolutely.

16. what religion are you? Hardcore agnostic

17. have you read the Bible all the way through? no, waiting for the movie.

18. what's your favorite book? Replay by Ken Grimwood

19. who is your favorite band? Frank Black and the Catholics

20. who do you think you'll vote for president in the next election? Reluctantly, John Kerry... less reluctantly if he puts McCain on the ticket.

21. what website did you see this on first? + busblog

Daily rundown... (aka, the dullest post ever)

The thing about this work thing, at least this particular job, is that when I get home the last thing I want to is think, let alone type a blog entry (not that one means more energy than the other). So, sorry if anyone has been popping in here a few times this past week and been left without something new to read. At the same time, there isn't as great deal to write.

My days go like this:

6:00am wake up, throw on some jeans and my boots. Brush my teeth. Wake up Claire.

6:25am Claire drops me off at the entrance of the Hollywood Bowl, where "team b", the other half of the event tour I'm on, pick me up for the drive to Irvine.

7:25am (barring traffic) arrive at Ryder truck rental off Harbor Blvd. in Orange County. I watch "team b" take off in their truck for their set up. As soon as Matt, the tour manager arrives, we hop into our 20' + truck and head for our location.

8:00 am we realize we're lost. Matt complains that Mapquest sucks... everyday. On Thursday morning I finally shell out $5 for an actual, paper, old school map.

8:30 am, half an hour late, we find our temp labor guy, unload the truck, and begin setting up the event. Soon after additional temp staff shows, and we put them to work wiping down the video games, creating displays, setting up signs, and gaffing (taping) down electric cords.

11:00 am, the event begins. Pretty soon, the place of local office workers who have found us on their way to or from lunch. Some have even passed up lunch to have a meal of the "sample size" niblets of Dave & Busters sandwiches, pasta, and desserts. As with any event where stuff is free, people complain that there isn't enough free stuff... complain that the sample sizes aren't large enough, complain that there aren't enough video games, complain that they can only have one free prize, and complain that I'm taking too long between snapping their picture, running it through PhotoShop, and printing out their free picture. I imagine how frustrating it must be to not get your fair share of free stuff.

1:30pm, the event ends. We yank the plugs on the video games, and hope that some food is left for a quick bite of lunch. Its the same food every day, but its even free for us. More importantly, it really is great stuff. We tear up the tape, roll up the extension cords, take down the signs, and repack the truck. Somehow, this always take much longer than the set up. Usually, in film or other TV event, the breakdown is quicker - the opposite here. We need to get the stuff back on the truck, wrap the machines with blankets, and tie them down. We also take all the kitchen supplies, three giant rolling food warmers...

3:30, drive off and to Dave & Busters, which is, unfortunately, south of the us and farther away from the Ryder lot. This is also rush hour, which isn't easy to manage in any situation, let alone with a 20' truck.
4:15, drop off the food carts, and head back to Ryder.

4:45, back at Ryder, park the truck, and I hook back up with "team b". They gloat about how much quicker they were, in spite of their location being right next to Dave & Busters, and staffed with more crew. Bastards. Fortunately, they're good guys, and make for good conversation on the hour plus trip back home to Los Angeles.

6:30pm, arrive home.

And thats on the best day. Typically I wasn't home til 8pm. On Friday I actually fell asleep at 9pm, and woke up the following morning at 11am. I'm getting old.

Saturday Claire and I went to see "Troy", which had some of the worst dialogue I have heard since, well, um... I can't recall even a porn film that has worse dialogue. Claire had been looking forward to seeing it for Brad Pitt and Orlando Bloom topless... even she admitted it wasn't worth it. Halfway through we discussed sneaking out and going to see "Mean Girls" instead. We're gluttons, so we stayed.

Today I'm making a point of doing nothing. Because "team b" has to set up a tent in addition to the rest of the stuff at their site tomorrow, they're picking me up thirty minutes early... meaning if anyone want to swing by the Hollywood Bowl tomorrow at 5:55am tomorrow, please grab me a latte along the way.

Also, I need to publicly apologize to the Mac users and SUV drivers for my last post. SUV drivers in the mid-west, or other areas where there is occasional inclement weather, I have no beef with. But in LA - full of flat, dry roads, there's no need unless you're compensating for a penis smaller than mine. As for Mac people, who need to install components made expressly for PCs to get their computers to work better, I'm sorry if I offended.

Tuesday, May 18, 2004


Too much freeway. The job so far is cake, but the drive down to Irvine is a bitch. I live in Los Angeles, I've also driven in New York City and Boston, so I think it means something when I say that drivers in Orange County are the biggest assholes ever. Especially the drivers of SUVs and trucks... but thats the case everywhere, right?

Fortunately, last night Claire and I stayed with her friend Lisa in Huntington Beach, not far from my meeting point with the crew. So, while it took me 15 minutes to get to work, it took everyone from L.A. about 60 to 90 minutes (which I'm in store for tomorrow morning).

Work, as stated before, is easy. After loading in the video games and assorted set ups, I man the "green screen", taking pics of visiting office workers, and then importing the pics to a G4 Mac, and, with PhotoShop, cropping the people out of the original photo and putting them into a shot at Dave & Busters... its a silly little thing, as they pretend to play pool, and I then put them into a picture in the middle of a pool hall, or have them holding up beer mugs, and then insert their pics in the middle of a bar setting. But, its a huge hit. More importantly, my crash course in PhotoShop went smoothly, and now that I know a couple basics I'm sure I'll be using that program more often than Image Composer... still hate the Mac, though... when are they going to add a second mouse button, if ever? Are they afraid of confusing the simple Mac users minds?

At the end of the day, the tour manager, and my cohort, Matt and I had to take the 23' cargo truck back to a Dave & Busters to drop off some food carts to be replenished. A general note to the world: driving a giant cube truck is not fun... if you see them trying to merge into a lane ahead of you, please do, cause somebody has to. But, since nobody wants to, eventually you have to start changing lanes and FORCE people to let you in, and blow their horns, and let you know how much they hate you. Alas... we know it sucks, but we also know we're insured. If not out of courtesy, please be nice to your neighborhood cargo truck driver because he doesn't care if he crashes into your oversized SUV.

After hours in the ass of traffic hell known as Orange County, I met back up with Claire and we headed home. No traffic, as it was past 8pm, until we hit Hollywood. We almost detoured at an exit, but saw it was an accident and decided to do a drive by. I was crossing my fingers that it was some jack ass in an SUV... not that I wish it on these people.

Indeed, it was. I'll be going to sleep tonight and hitting the road tomorrow with the bad karma. The smile on my face was worthwhile.

Saturday, May 15, 2004

Gunslingers, Lakers, and Strippers

Adding to my newly invigorated love of Westerns, I've been playing Red Dead Revolver on my Playstation 2 whenever I get the chance. Its perfect now for me to play as soon as Deadwood ends.

Over at Katzinjammer's blog, word has been he'll be moving to South Dakota. I didn't think this would be as cool to blog abouf as an Alaskan fishing gig, until I just realized: the REAL Deadwood is in South Dakota. I am now jealous. (by the way, if "Tall Guy" is reading this, Happy Birthday.)

The Lakers game is on here, and Claire and I have a couple chicks over to watch the game. Sad... I'm the guy, and the only one not wanting to watch. Of course, in true jock-like fashion, the girls are sipping wine and enjoying cheese and crackers. The best part is Claire whipped up some homemade guacamole.

I'm trying to convince one of the girls, who works as a booker for an "erotic dancer service", to blog about it. She says she's gonna check out my blog, think about it, and possibly recruit my help to set it up. Whatever it takes to get her to divulge all the juicy details...

Tomorrow, on Sunday, I start "training" for the new gig... down in Irvine, one hour away. Ugh. There's a relief that I have some work, but I'm not too excited about the job. Its consistent money for three weeks - yeah, thats consistent by my standards. And, my days will be spent with video games. Who am I to complain?

And finally, in the good news category, Jeff Bacon just sent me my share of the money some British company is paying us to air "Arrowhead Beer." Its a token amount, but still the first time I've been paid for my hard work. Bacon now supposedly has an idea for an anti-Bush ad he wants to shoot... so hopefully, assuming I dig the concept, I'll have a project to fill my time between my new job and my summer ESPN work.

Heck... maybe I'll need to visit Deadwood...

Friday, May 14, 2004

Genius Web Site of the Week

This is brilliant.

Back to work...

At the final hour today the COMPANY that I've been trying to work with as a tour manager, on an event that would have started yesterday, finally called me. Meaning that I'd jump into their training on SUNDAY. Instead of being filled with joy, I'm taking this gig with a spoonful of apprehension. I'm not being offered the tour manager position, but an assistant role, and at about half the rate that I I've been getting for a couple years now.

But... the money is secondary. I'm swallowing my pride - and professional qualifications - and going with it because a) this is a company I want to work for, and hopefully they'll trust me after I do it this one time, b) it'll only last three or four weeks, so I can then go off and work on X Games, and c) i'm going a little batty working at a casting agency sitting at a desk all day. Point "a" is the biggest - they seem like a really cool group of people with some interesting projects.

So... if you live in Southern California, look for me on one of the stops of the Dave & Busters tour, setting up video games on the ground floor of assorted office buildings in Orange County, Anaheim, Long Beach, and possibly San Diego. The basic idea is to bring "Dave & Busters" to the people (its an adult arcade/bar chain across the US) where they work, video games and food, and then point out that a bigger, better D & Bs is just a few blocks away.

Dastardly Moustache

After ten days of stubble started growing into a beard, last night I decided to shave. But, this time I left myself a moustache and soul patch, as I've been inspired by my recent indulgence of Westerns.

I was hoping the facial hair would like like this guy, Seth Bullock (Timothy Olyphant, left) on my favorite show "Deadwood".

Instead, I think that I ended up looking more like this guy, Al Swearengen (Ian McShane, right) the ultimate villain from the same show:

Alas, I woke up this morning and shaved off the 'stache. Claire seemed relieved - she pretended to like it last night, but said I looked like a drug dealer. Normally, I'd take that as a compliment, but she's known real drug dealers, and the real ones aren't as cool looking as the ones on TV. I just thought I looked dastardly. For a moment I fancied the thought of being able to twiddle the ends of my moustache as I planned to rule the world.

As I wrapping up this post, I found this like minded article:

We're here today to mourn the passing of the moustache from the realm of things that have the potential to ever be cool again...
It's not that I have something personal against moustaches. I was watching the new HBO series Deadwood the other day and marvelling at how cool everyone looked in the Old West, with their battered suede jackets and dusty cowboy hats and wild, unkempt moustaches.
I think back then if you were seen on the street without one you'd be automatically challenged to a gunfight at high noon, but it would be one of those unfair ones where guys with rifles in the saloon windows would shoot you in the back before you could draw. The Old West was not a good place to be smooth-faced...

source: "Scrape off the 'stache" from Canoe/CNews April 24, 2004

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Will blog for food.

Special thanks go to my anonymous donor who, after reading of recent streak of bad luck, sent me some cash. I will spend it wisely, and likely sooner than later, and it is definitely received with the highest gratitude.

But, the thing about blogs, is that the best ones are written by people who's lives aren't going so well. Reading about the rich, the perfectly content, or the innocent makes for boring reading. So, by sending me money, you're helping solve one of my problems - a little deux ex machina, for you literary types - without watching me struggle much. A blog, like any writing, is more interesting if the struggle is more difficult.

Take Benzo (We All Have Stories) for example. She's a fun writer, and bitches a lot. To be honest, she'd be fun to read for her disgruntled views on movies, but everything is exacerbated because she has some strange disease that has no cure, that I barely understand. She doesn't ever sound like she's sorry for herself, and expels a confidence, and an attitude, that I look up to. Bedridden, she may not be able to direct a movie in the near future, but I wouldn't put it past her to write the next great novel or hit screenplay.

Tyranny is a new blogger on the scene. This is the first post of his I read, hooking me right away:

The above photograph was taken in ye olden days of yore, the year of our lord 2002 to be exact. I was 25 years old. It was a simpler time. The Bush reich was still in its relative infancy, The Afghani sand-nigger was much more of a concern than the Iraqi sand-nigger, and a frightening new plague called "AIDS" was sweeping across San Francisco's homo-sin-ual bathouses like an incredibly large and murder-licious broom, killing dozens. Apples were redder, beer was colder, and if memory serves alive, the pussies were wetter.

That was also the year I had a heart attack.

Then there'sSimpleton, a guy who writes without shame that he's a bit of a loser. Bad luck with girls, talks shit about his friends girlfriends and gets caught, everyone thinks that since he dyed his hair recently that he's gay. That he writes about all this so honestly is surprising and makes him one of the coolest reads on the net.

Tall Guy, aka Katzinjammer, is also a newer blogger on the scene with a little more subtelty in his personal dramas. I'm disappointed he won't be taking a job on an Alaskan fishing boat, considered one of the worlds most dangerous jobs, because I think the blogs would have been interesting. Still, from what I can discern from his posts, he tends to get fired from too many jobs for showing up late, if at all. He's now moving to South Dakota to work as a collections agent. Sounds like the potential for great blogging to me, especially if he spills the dirt on how those places operate.

With any blog you follow, you root for the heroes. But blogs aren't fiction. I never wish harm, or any additional drama, on the part of the folks.

Well, not unless it makes for a better blog.

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Happy Mothers Day

Mary Elizabeth Amadeus LaPlante Markland Kaiser Hey, Mom. How's the trip going? Have you landed yet? How was first class? Was the food any good? Any turbulence? I imagine there was probably no need for "life saving" devices on your flight, ha ha.

Yep. I'm sending an open "blog" to you. I think you'd appreciate my blog more than anyone else. You'd probably drop the word "blog" whenever you could. Everytime we talk I'm sure you'd ask if I was gonna blog about it. Any time I told you a story, or you heard a good a story, you'd say it would make a good blog. You'd always pronounce "blog" with a frog like voice. Then I'm sure you'd complain about some of my blogs as being too personal, especially if they were about you, and get on me to write even more personal blogs about everything else in my life.

Working at the flower shop this weekend. Delivering to moms all over Los Angeles. Everyone thinks their mom is the best, although we know the truth.

Talk to Jimmy, Patty, and Allison now and again, although not as often as I'm sure you'd like, and certainly not as often as I'd like, but we still stay in touch.

Think of you often. I'll hear a song, see a movie, or read something in the news, and think its something that you'd appreciate. For a split second, I often think I should call you and tell you whats on my mind.

I'm a little disappointed you have yet to fulfill my request that you freak me out sometime. I'm sure you're busy, or maybe wherever you are you haven't had the chance. Maybe you are a frog now, for all I know. I'd try to contact you via Ouija, but I'm afraid I'd be disappointed with the results. Or worse, have you share some creepy news like the news the Ouija board gave you when it said you'd have two more kids, even though the doctor had said you could have no more after you had Jimmy and Patty. Then again, you also told me once that you think you were inseminated by aliens before giving birth to me.

Thanks, Mom, for taking good care of me, and forgiving me for when I didn't always return the favor. Thanks for buying me countless Yodas, for teaching me to laugh at myself, for trying to drill Christian values into me, for the faith and encouragement in all my creative endeavors (even when they contained naughty language), and for just making sure I knew that you were always there and loved me. And still do, even potentially as a frog.

Before I start getting sappy, or try to do a rewrite, I'm gonna sign off. Hope the adventure is going as well as I thought it would. And I love you.

Chalup' - America!


I wish I was a Batman again. Not that I ever was Batman. But, in my youth, my friend Denis and I tried our best to fight crime late at night throughout the streets of Old Lyme, population 5,000. Actually, I was more Robin to Denis' Batman, but we'd both dress in black and walk the winding roads under the cover of darkness, carrying assorted weapons that we'd either made or bought from a local cutlery/knife shop. Mostly, we'd duck into the woods when we saw cars approach - as practice I guess - and on occassion explore an empty house, which meant breaking in, but Denis would always find a way that didn't require breaking anything to get in. Like, he'd use a grappling hook and rope to get us on the roof, and then sneak in through a balcony, or sometimes even a sky light. These adventures would last sometimes until dawn. Although we did have some actual adventures, we never busted any criminals, and besides the occasional rodent, never got to put the weapons to use.

So, I want to be Batman again. I don't think that desire has ever gone away. Perhaps thats part of why I occasionally think that I could still join the army, or maybe the L.A.P.D. Whenever I feel motivated, I research and put some calls into starting a neighborhood watch group (being a block away from seedy Hollywood Blvd., we need it).

But today when I was woken up at 7:45am by a car outside of the apartment blaring its horn for fifteen minutes, I wanted to to walk outside in full battle gear. Instead, I walked out in boxers and a t-shirt. It was a black BMW. I tapped on one of the tinted windows. It rolled down. "What!?" a young blonde in sunglasses asked. She was a the wheel. A guy with black, slicked back hair was next to her. "Can you quite honking? You're waking everybody up." She waved me off and said, "Its 8 am." I asked them who they were trying to get, and they pointed to the apartment across the street. I said to call the manager. She asked if I thought she was stupid, cause she already tried that, and honked again. She told me to stop tapping on her window, and rolled it up. I was fuming. I tapped again. The greasy haired dude jumped out of the car, with clenched fists. "She said not to tap on the car!" I repeated they had to stop blaring their horn. My andrenaline was pumping, my sleep had been disturbed, I wasn't about to be intimidated by a car who was car pooling. He got back into the car while she shouted that I should call the police. I knew it was futile, but I memorized their license plate number and went back to my apartment for my cel phone. I called 911. On my way back down, I heard them blare the horn again and take off. I stayed on the phone, was transferred four times before being told there was nothing I could report.

I conspired throughout the day about waiting til the next time, and then going up to the roof of the building with a paint gun, and showering their car with paint pellets when they honked next (this was after eliminating tossing down rocks or furniture).

Claire called me later in the day to report that she walked into an abandoned apartment to discover what looked like a spell may have been put on her by the ex-tenant. He's an actor, who shall remain nameless, who said he had to move after only being there for three weeks because his show was going to be shooting in Canada. He ignored that he'd signed a lease, and essentially took his stuff and ran. Claire sent an abandonment notice, and he called her, screaming, and calling her unreasonable. Now, a few weeks later, Claire walked into the apartment to discover some spell components - unsure what exactly - and a rotting piece of shit in the toilet.

Alas, it looks like a hot summer is coming, and my gut sayd things will only get weirder. So, I want to be Batman again.

Thursday, May 06, 2004

Still in a foul mood...

An x-ray of my tooth.Dentist yesterday wasn't so bad. For one, the guy only took a look. For two, he seriously, only a took a look at where I said it hurt - this is definitely not a normal dentist - this is the fast food kind, where every thing is served a la carte, and by a UCLA student. A quick x-ray, and he said it looked it like an easy pull. "If it was a bottom tooth, or if it was impacted, then you'd feel some pain," he said. He added that maybe I'd have a day of discomfort after. Phew. Anyway, the extraction isn't for a week or so. And it'll also be about 1/2 what they told me on the phone. Of course, since everything is a la carte, I'm sure they'll ask me if I'll want any "extras", like pain killers, and then I'll be paying out my ass.

But, still no word on the job that would start next Thursday. They said they'd get back to me soon. I'm going a little mad over it. I thought I was a lock for the job, that was the impression I was given. Three interviews later, they still don't know if they want me - for a month long job. What evil forces are working against me? Out of frustration, I took another peek at the web site for the Army Reserves. I need to figure out what to do with my life.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

I'm in a foul mood...

Brought on in part of the impending doom of my dentist appointment at 12:30 Wednesday (today), in part because I was stewing up in Burbank all day, but mostly because even after my THIRD interview on Monday for THE COMPANY, they still haven't made a decision yet. And the gig would start next week.

My tooth feels fine right now. Haven't noticed it in days. So after being told how bad getting a wisdom tooth, especially a molar, removed, I'm wondering if I could postpone the extraction for a while. Some people tell me that its unlikely that my appointment and the operation will be on the same day - but I'm not going to kid myself. Tomorrow will be the beginning of the most painful experience of my life. Besides sitting through "Matrix Revolutions".

If nothing else, maybe I can get someone to take some pics, so I can share the experience.

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Breaking News in Montana

I'm tracking down press resources around the country the old fashioned way: doing Yahoo! searches for newspaper sites, and then finding contact info. Anyway, some great articles I'm running across out in Montana.

Lewistown News Argus Online

History on Display

Fifth grader Gus Bass is all business as he portrays General George Patton at the second annual Fifth Grade Wax Museum held recently at Lewis and Clark Elementary School. A variety of historical figures, ranging from cowboys to Indians, and many others were on display.

And then this from Hungry Horse News Online...

Massive corn spill will see night bear patrols

Bear specialists are doing night patrols at a huge corn spill along the Burlington Northern Santa Fe rail line east of Essex to keep bruins from getting a free meal while crews clean up the mess.
The spill happened last Tuesday (April 20) after a BNSF freight train derailed and 29 cars carrying corn spilled their contents.
The tracks were cleared of the wreckage and freight train service was up and running again the next day.

Seriously, this is from the front page of The Shelby Promoter

Pat Hughes manages to keep possession of the ball for the Shelby Merchants team as he climbs back on to his donkey during Donkey Basketball action at the old middle school last by Cynthia Gillund

And this nice shot below is from The Sidney Herald:

Montana Highway Patrol officer Michael Downs "tests" Savage student Sheila Schow during Tuesday's mock accident at Savage High School.

Frying with Bacon and Ham... Cooling off with Arrowhead Beer

One man trying to keep cool with an It is so hot out that my computer, to protect itself from over heating, "crashed" last night as I was wrapping up the first draft of this post.

So, yeah, yesterday another record high here in Los Angeles. I was up in Burbank at the casting office, where it is routinely ten degrees hotter than the rest of L.A.

I noticed that I had two new emails in my inbox. One was from Jeff Ham. The other from Jeff Bacon.

Jeff Ham is Claire's ex-boyfriend. Claire set Ham up with her old job at the casting agency. Ham is now, part time anyway, my boss.

Jeff Bacon is my buddy I met at a UCLA Extension class for making short films. I ended up producing Bacon's first two shorts, the $60,000 plus, 35mm spectacular, "Birth of a Salesman", and the $500, mini DV spoof "Arrowhead Beer."

Both Ham and Bacon are writers. Both write comedy. Both love football and beer.

Both Ham and Bacon once worked for the same temp agency, The Right Connections, although they never knew each other. Claire recalls one time picking up Ham's paycheck, and the girl handing out checks thought she was kidding, and tried giving Claire the check with Jeff Bacon's name on it.

Besides the occasional party Claire and I have, Bacon and Ham spend no time with each other. And in those rare instances, everyone else finds it more amusing that Bacon and Ham are together than they do. But now...

Jeff Bacon works at New Line Cinema. Jeff Ham is now casting the film, "The New World", a New Line Cinema production.

Then, the other day, Ham shows me that he was just sent a clip via email of "Arrowhead Beer" by someone who thought he'd enjoy it - not knowing it was directed by not just someone he knew, but someone named Jeff Bacon.

This was flattering, to see that this teeny short film was still making the rounds, but not surprising. Bacon and I still get requests now and again, usually from Europe, to show "Arrowhead Beer" on TV or the internet. We've had friends from Germany tell us it was making the rounds there. And, if you do a search for "Arrowhead Beer", you'll see it has a little bit of a following. The only disappoint, I think, is that "Arrowhead Beer" required signifigantly less effort, and a fraction of the money, as "Birth of a Salesman."

Steven Lentz (aka William Knight), spokeman for Arrowhead BeerSo, with that tease in mind, here's a couple links to sites about "Arrowhead Beer." The whole, five minute short, is available at iFilm, including the end credits and "Real Beer for Real Men" song as performed by Kari Newhouse, but I'm not sure how to access it.

Maxim magazine (European edition) coverage of "Arrowhead Beer"

Film Threat magazine's review of "Arrowhead Beer"

Click here to watch the first of the "Arrowhead Beer" ads, hosted by Digital Fog

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Free Money from Google

This is some crazy shit:

free GMAIL accounts raking in large sums at ebay

Anyone with a Blogger account got a free gmail account, and the ability to allow two more people to receive accounts... at dinner I thought maybe I could auction mine off on eBay, and thought I was being original. Alas... far from it. All sorts of losers are getting something for nothing. Over $50 to give someone a free gmail account!

Three Years

Today is Claire and my's third anniversary since our very first date. Damn thats a long time. I bought her some crossword puzzles, a book, and dinner... and plan on making her dinner Sunday night. She got me an annual pass to Disneyland. Pretty neat - they have the new "Tower of Terror" opening this week... more importantly, I'm hooked on their "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" game - just like the show, only instead of a million, you're eligible for a cruise trip. I got to sit in the hot seat the last time we went, and I came two questions away from the grand prize. How the hell should I know what "The Little Mermaid's" real name is? I walked away with some tacky pins and a polo shirt.

Anyway, Claire and had dinner at the Pink Pepper, a Thai place at La Brea and Hollywood. Nothing fancy. But, just before we left we saw Dominic Monaghan, aka Pippin the Hobbit from "Lord of the Rings" walk out. I'm usually unfazed by celebrity sightings - in L.A. they're a common occurrance, and a work hazard - but anyone from "Star Wars", "Lord of the Rings", or "Office Space" deserves mention. (and, if you'll recall from an earlier posting, I saw Pippin's cohort Billy Boyd, aka Merry, at my friend Josh's party a few weeks before).

Earlier today, I was a little disturbed to see a healthy line outside of the Mann's National Theatre in Westwood for a showing of "Mean Girls." Am I so out of touch with film that I don't know what could be a hit these days? My friend Kevin and I, ever since high school, would make bets on weekend box office grosses. It was eerie how close we'd get - we'd could have made a killing if we could have made bets in Vegas. But after living in L.A. a few years, my skills dropped off. Too close to the action? Now I feel so busy with other aspects of my life... like blogging... that a teen flick called "Mean Girls" was totally off my radar.

Even worse, I suppose, is that I've yet to see "The Punisher", based on my favorite all time Marvel characters. Maybe I'm still reeling at the last adaptation attempt with Dolph Lundgren.

As for anniversaries, it also struck me a few years ago that its been three years since I've spoken with my friend Kevin, which is a shame. A falling out that, well, sometimes regrettably happens between friends... anyway, if you're reading this, Kev, I miss you bud.

(for those following such things, my job interview was postponed til Monday - I didn't get the news until after I'd shaved and ironed a shirt. Curses!)