Archive for July, 2007

#877

11:55 pm, Wednesday, July 25th, 2007

You know what’s a good song? Roll to Me by Del Amitri. You know their name was originally Del Amitri Rialzo back in the 80s? I think Roll to Me sounds like a slightly lazier BNL-ified version of Accidentally in Love.

Finished Fables vol. 9 and 1001 Nights of Snowfall. [Incoming spoilers, BTW.] Holy cow, Snow White is badass! Tracking down and murdering each of the seven dwarves that raped her even though it was likely to spark war between the two kingdoms? That totally changes how I thought about her character. But I guess it makes sense that almost every fable has commited at least one terrible act in their amazingly long life spans.

And who would’ve guessed Frau Totenkinder was born in frickin’ caveman times? I knew she was old, but that dates her, like, tens of thousands of years. I s’pose that detail is pretty neat, but I was a little disappointed that they told her story at all. Her enigmatic past and motivations were probably the coolest things about her. Did she murder (eat?) children for fun or for arcane purposes? It was more interesting when we didn’t know.

Regarding the art, I hate when they switch to anyone besides Mark Buckingham. Especially when the substitute is Michael Allred. Allred has no idea how to convey the characters’ personalities — Mr. North looks way too kindly, Ambrose looks nothing like he’s supposed to, Bigby looks like a wide-eyed Tom Cruise… I wonder if he even read the whole run before sitting down to draw his issues. His treatment of Pinnochio is particularly maladroit. Compare this sample (sorry for the quality; I was too lazy to get the scanner out and I couldn’t seem to get the lighting to work with my camera):

Fables: Buckingham's Pinnochi vs. Allred's

Last night was the season finale of Kathy Griffin: MLotDL. What’s with this show only having 6- and 7-episode seasons? Anyway, this one was very funny. Maybe even funnier than the prison episode. Really made me dislike Andrew WK though. Who else could be that full of himself as to put on a one-man show with absolutely no plan or talking points?

I had a KFC famous bowl (mixed with a small mac n’ cheese) for lunch today and it was awesome. You know they have a white gravy version with biscuits now? I’ll have to try that next time.

#876

11:16 pm, Tuesday, July 24th, 2007

I fried some of the leftover tilapia for breakfast this morning. I’ve got to make more stuff with fish in it. Not only is it cheap (tilapia, frex, is only $2.75/lb.), it has a lightness befitting summer (even fried).

Fried Tilapia

I learned about these Vibram FiveFingers shoes on BoingBoing this morning. (“Shoes” doesn’t seem like the right word for these things, but it’s close.) I’m very enamored with them. I have a hard time imagining myself spending more than fifty bucks on a pair of shoes, but I might make an exception for these. Is it just me, or do they really look ridiculously comfortable? Like the podiatric version of sweatpants.

I’m pretty tolerant of the weeaboo (Japanophile) nonsense that seems so ingrained in the English-speaking imageboards. But it’s especially annoying on 4chan’s /ck/. Every day it seems like there are new, superfluous threads about bento, ramen, durian, natto, tofu, century eggs, balut, etc. (I know not all of those things are Japanese, but they still fall under the general “weeaboo” heading IMHO.) I swear that damn Haruhi bento gets reposted every other day. I liked Anonymous’s recent response to this “OMG NIPPON YATTA!!11″ supersaturation:

In today’s changed world, weeaboo threads run rampant on the 4chan food and cooking board. They take up room and prevent actualy good threads to have their moments. For just one dollar a day, less than a cup of coffee you can save a thread from this torment and break it free from the weeaboo hands. Lets work together before its too late.

It sounds a bit like copypasta, but I got a kick out of it.

#875

10:12 pm, Monday, July 23rd, 2007

My trade paperback comics arrived in the mail today! The last three volumes of Invincible, plus the latest Fables collection and a stand-alone from the same series. Of course I tore through all the Invincibles immediately. Angstrom Levy is such an awesome characters. [Spoiler alert.] It sucks that they killed him off, but at least there’s a chance he could come back (as an ally, even), given the nature of his superpower. The scene from vol. 5 where all his various incarnations are sitting in the mind-condenser (or whatever he called it) has got to be one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a comic. The Mauler clones are pretty keen too; I like them better since he/they killed the potential original in issue #29.

Invincible & Fables TPBs

Brett and I went to lunch at Wingers in Moscow today. This probably goes without saying, but the wings were amazing. We split an 8-piece basket as an appetizer. So sweet, crisper than you can imagine… And they serve ‘em with celery sticks. I can’t believe I never thought of that — it’s the perfect thing to cleanse your palette and give you a break from the spiciness.

And they bring you a big bowl of popcorn instead of bread. I thought that was a little weird, but it’s a good idea since it doesn’t fill you up the way bread does. I had the “loaded chicken” — two chicken breasts covered with some kind of sweet sauce and smothered with sauteed onions and mushrooms, bacon, and two kinds of cheese with a baked potato on the side. Talk about a food coma!

#874

10:09 pm, Sunday, July 22nd, 2007

So tonight’s dinner was pretty “haute cuisine” compared to my typical cookery: Tilapia Francese with baked potato. (It was supposed to be Flounder Francese, but the store didn’t have any. Tilapia’s a good substitute though; it’s firm, which is important for pan frying.)

I fried the seasoned, floured, and egg-dredged fillets in an EVOO (yes, it’s a Rachel Ray term, but typing it all out gets tiresome) and butter mixture with two cloves of minced garlic. When the fillets were finished I set them aside and cranked the heat up so I could deglaze with some of Brett’s sauvignon blanc. Then I added a little milk, sour cream, some lemon zest (and juice), some herbs de provence, and capers. Topped the tilapia with toasted, sliced almonds and covered with the sauce (now reduced by two-thirds). Very fancy. First time I’ve ever cooked with capers (which taste kind of like a piquant, generically-herby pickle when eaten alone, IMHO).

The chives I topped the baked potatoes with are actually from a live plant Brett brought back from Spokane this weekend (he was up there for a mini-family reunion for a couple days). The red and black plates are also his doing — he finally used the Fred Meyer gift card he got for Christmas. (He would’ve used it sooner, but there aren’t any Fred Meyers near Pullman.)

Tilapia Francese with baked potato    Tilapia Francese plate #2

I’m getting towards the end of the second season of Sports Night. It’s weird what’s happening to the show — it’s getting much better but I’m hating the characters more and more. Especially Dana. Ugh, irrational women! Dan’s increasing emo-ness is pretty disgusting too. Yet it’s getting more interesting. I hope they don’t end the series with a cliffhanger.

Also been watching season four of Penn & Teller: Bullshit!.

(Tangent: How annoying is it that the title of that show ends with a punctuation mark? I want to end my sentence there, but I don’t want to shout it. And there’s something so uncomfortable about putting a period right next to an exclamation point when it’s not part of an ellipsis…)

I have mixed feelings about their show. I think Penn Jillette is an annoying blowhard and I hate their morals (e.g. thinking parents that have extra-marital affairs aren’t harming their kids by doing so, regularly hiring prostitutes is a healthy behavior, etc.), but I love their politics. They really embrace a pure, libertarian view of the role government should play. I just think it’s just a little disappointing that they don’t draw enough of a distinction between what should be allowed and what’s right.

#873

6:40 pm, Saturday, July 21st, 2007

That deadbeat buyer on eBay finally responded. After I opened an “unpaid item” dispute for the auction, of course. (I couldn’t do it till now since you have to wait a week from the end of the auction.) I sent invoices and messages to this guy on several occasions and he blew me off every time. But within 35 minutes of opening the dispute, he responds with this:

I would like to mail a certified check, I am changing credit cards and would like to get the payment out by monday morning.

Nevermind that the auction very clearly stated in two places that I only accept PayPal. I suspect the “certified check” thing is a scam or an attempt to delay his imminent “unpaid item strike” and negative feedback. What is wrong with people? Why would you bid on something you’re not capable of paying for? I told him he could use PayPal with a checking account, but I doubt he cares. He’s prolly just some half-retarded would-be 419er.

I ended up not going to Hairspray, but I did skim the 1988 original TiVo grabbed off TBS. It sucked hard enough that I think I’ll just wait to rent or download the 2007 movie. It had a strange cast; Ricki Lake (who’s a staggeringly inept actor), Sonny Bono (who was actually good), Jerry Stiller, and, funnily enough, a young Josh Charles (AKA Dan Rydell from Sports Night). I really liked the Broadway musical but it amazes me that anyone thought the movie was worth adapting in the first place.

I think John Waters is hilarious by himself, but his movies are terrible. I don’t understand why he uses them to push such pointlessly axiomatic morals. Segregation is bad, don’t belittle people because of their appearance, do what makes you feel good provided it doesn’t hurt anyone, etc. Was there some big “bring back segregation” movement in the late 80s that I’m not aware of? It seems like such an odd issue to dwell on in modern times.

A Dirty Shame, which I saw last month, seemed to be on the brink of saying something insightful about repression and hedonism, but managed to smother any potentially-interesting themes with pathetically cheap, bawdy gags.

Before I wrap this up: Who knew Jon Lovitz was this awesome?

#872

11:48 pm, Friday, July 20th, 2007

I’m a fan of the Knorr/Lipton “Pasta Sides.” I eat at least two of them per week. (The parmesan variety is my favorite.) They’re very quick to make and easy to dress up with whatever veggies are lying around, or a handful of frozen ones… they always seem a little under-seasoned to me, so I usually add a few grinds of black pepper, some garlic powder, and nutmeg. A little grated cheese is nice too.

Anyway, last time I was at the IGA I noticed a similar product that was cheaper. The Flavorite brand costs 70ยข less per package, but it’s made with egg noodles. I got a couple to see how they were and was pleasantly surprised. Egg noodles cook much faster than the normal kind. And their stroganoff was really good. I think I’ll just be buying those from now on.

Here’s last night’s dinner:

Pasta w/ veggies

It looks kind of like soup, but that’s just cuz it’s really hot and extra-creamy because of all the extra sharp cheddar I threw in there. It wasn’t as good as the stroganoff, but it was still very decent.

(OMG, I am finding it very hard to get through this post. So much apathy and distraction…)

I’ve been watching a lot of Sports Night lately. I can’t believe what a ripoff Studio 60 is — the main characters in both series are practically the same people. Only Studio 60‘s version is “edgy” because they’ve both done drugs. You know, Aaron Sorkin’s shows would be way better if it weren’t for the annoying dialogue. I think he really believes “fast and repetitive” is the same as “witty.” That must be why Sports Night failed — the stupid, meaningless exchanges are almost unbearable sometimes.

“Hey, we’re gonna go play the sport of kings.”
“You’re going to race horses?”
“No, we’re playing poker. The sport of kings.”
“Poker’s not the sport of kings.”
“What’s the sport of kings?”
“Horse racing.”
“Huh.”

(Okay, I’m writing off today’s post; I just can’t focus. Let’s try this again tomorrow.)