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March 30, 2005

Teri Hatcher / Terri Schiavo follow-up

I just wanted to point out that the picture in the post below is in fact a doctored picture of Terri Schiavo with the head of Teri Hatcher. However, I didn't really change the Teri Hatcher picture at all -- original picture was some glamour shot of her in a gown. I just think it's hilarious that Teri Hatcher's sexy look also passes as a brain-dead vegetative state.

Sorry if I offended. (I know there are a lot of Desperate Housewives fans out there.)

Posted by JoshHornik at 03:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 29, 2005

Future Review: "God doesn't know the word Brain-dead"

Introducing a new feature on my blog: the future review.
For those of you who don't know, I have a prototype time machine I play around with -- just a silly hobby. Sometimes I like to go into the future and check out a movie or tv show, and now I'll be reviewing them for you poor saps who actually have to live life in order.

Well, I just watched the TV movie "God doesn't know the word Brain-dead" in the future, and even though I didn't really lose the 2 hours (since I came back to the present exactly 1 second after I'd left), I'm still not happy about that time I'll never get back. Teri Hatcher plays Terri Schiavo

As you may have guessed, this is the TV movie of Terri Schiavo's life and media-abused death. It also happened to be the first TV movie produced by Fox News, under the "Karl Rove presents..." marque. I guess that should have been a red flag.

First, the positives. Teri Hatcher was (will be) brilliant in the lead role. Either she'll be spending the next 3 years in acting classes, or she'll suffer a catastrophic stroke in that time, because the performance was unexpectedly subtle and naturalistic. Using her voice-overs throughout was a little heavy-handed, but effective. When the feeding tube was removed, in the hands of a less-accomplished actress, 5 minutes of screaming, pleading and crying in voiceover could have been maudlin...

Christopher Walken seemed like a strange choice to play Terri's husband, until I realized the producer's point of view. Walken plays Michael Schiavo as an evil, amoral cad who puts no value on life of any kind. However, having a message in your movie and jamming it down all the viewers' throats are two differnt things. The movie had scenes of Schiavo as a child torching ants with a magnifying glass and shooting a bird with a broken wing despite his troop leader's assurances that the bird would survive. As an adult, he is shown stomping on blooming flowers and turning off a television disinterestedly in the middle of a news report on September 11, 2001. Some of the characterization didn't even seem true -- did he really have a gay love affair with an abortionist?

George W. Bush is triumphant playing himself in a cameo. He portrays just the right balance of arrogance and holier-than-thou righteousness, but he makes sure not to play it too smart. He's spot on.

In the end, unless your name starts with Bishop or Reverend, when this movie comes out in a few years, I recommend you watch That 90's Show instead (it's quite funny.)

Posted by JoshHornik at 01:47 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 28, 2005

Reclining Pig is back!

There were calls for Reclining Pig on the new blog.
Here's a picture I found of P. Diddy wearing a cool sleeveless red RP to the Charlie's Angels premiere. Does it get any cooler?

Posted by JoshHornik at 01:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 27, 2005

Bob Dylan @ Pantages Theater

Bob Dylan just finished 5 shows at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood with Merle Haggard opening. Dylan and Haggard. That's redundant, isn't it? (See picture above.)

I went to two of those shows and, I have to admit, I was a little disappointed. While he came back with a better show on Saturday than on Friday, the moments where Dylan's singing rose to levels worthy of the songs were still too few. The fact is, while it is great to hear him play any of his songs live for the first time, and I can think of over 100 songs I have never but would love to hear live, his set lists have not changed enough over the years for the concerts to hold up for me. This is, of course, unfair to Bob Dylan. The guy's probably written over 1000 songs and to expect him to sing them all is stupid. (That's a lot of lyrics to remember.) And I'm sure there were a lot of people hearing Dylan play All Along the Watchtower for the first time.

On Friday, Dylan did a great job with his Oscar-winning song Things Have Changed, and he dusted off Every Grain Of Sand (not one of my favorites, but I appreciated the rarity.) Although I was half expecting it, I was pleased to hear my all-time personal favorite Dylan song Don't Think Twice, It's Alright in the encore. The rest of the show was pretty standard -- a lot of songs from acclaimed recent albums Love and Theft and Time Out of Mind, which are good, but not generally interesting.

On Saturday night, the opening of the show gave me hope that it would be a special night. The first 3 numbers were amazing: a well-done Maggie's Farm to start, into a rare Blood On The Tracks nugget, If You See Her Say Hello, and then the best of the 2 nights: It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding), on which Dylan's crazy new vocal style -- staccato phrasing and emphases on the end of lines -- worked perfectly. The rest of the show didn't quite live up to those three, but he did throw in a nice acoustic Girl From the North Country and his Love and Theft songs were very good (especially High Water).

While the song choice holds the interest for me at a Dylan show, the music is just OK. Dylan has country-fied his band, including pedal steel guitar and a fiddle. At times they try to open up and crank up the rock, but Dylan seems to keep the musicians on a pretty tight leash. Solos tend to be single-phrase trading between 2 or 3 of the musicians and only once did the lead guitarist get to really build on something. (Not that I was all that impressed with his solos in the first place.) I'm sorry -- No band should ever have a violin. (Kudos to The Decemberists for somehow overcoming that in their show on Thursday.)

As for Bob, he played piano -- piano!?!? -- instead of guitar, but to be honest, his piano-playing was almost completely unheard throughout both shows. (Probably just as well, based on the few notes I did hear.) His voice is awfully bad these days. He overcomes it on some songs and makes it work for him, but in many songs (especially the ballads) he was either unintelligible or seemed like a caricature of himself. However, he played a lot more harmonica than I had seen in the past, and while somewhat lacking in energy, I liked his solos and at least they got him out from behind the piano and moving to the center of the stage.

So, to sum up, if you've never seen Bob Dylan, it is worth going because he's a legend playing legendary songs. If you've only seen him a couple times, it is worth going to hear songs you've never heard him play. If you've seen him a lot, it may not be worth seeing a whole concert for the 1 or 2 songs you haven't heard before. (But then again, maybe it's worth it all, just to hear him sing "money doesn't talk, it swears" live.)

Posted by JoshHornik at 10:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Spring Tournament -- final update

It's all over, and once again, Asashoryu dominated. He finished 14-1 and had won it on day 14. He's won 3 tournaments in a row (11 now for his career) and won all 3 of them before the last day. He's only the 3rd Sumo wrestler to do that. It was a pretty easy tournament for him, made interesting only by his wearing a gold mawashi for the first 13 days, then switching back to black for the last 2 matches.

Other scores:
Kaio finished 10-5. He gets to stay at Ozeki for next tournament, but he has to do better for them to think about promoting him to Yokozuna.

Tochiazuma also finished 10-5, closing with 5 wins in a row, including the one win against Asashoryu.

But Ozeki Chiyotaikai finished 6-9, meaning he is "kadoban" for next tournament and will get demoted if he doesn't win 8 or more.

With his back to the wall, Hakuho managed to win his last 4 and scrape out an 8-7 winning record, so he'll stay at Sekiwake for next tournament. However, he's no longer on track to be the youngest Ozeki ever -- probably couldn't get promoted until September at the earliest.

The other 3 top-ranked wrestlers, Miyabiyama, Iwakiyama, and Koto'oshu, all had terrible tournaments and will all get demoted out of the top ranks. For Koto'oshu, at 4-11, it was his first losing record ever.

Takamisakari finished 9-6. And Tamanoshima finished as runner-up at 12-3.

Posted by JoshHornik at 09:49 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A Fresh Start

Welcome to Josh's blog v2.0.
Don't let the bastards get you down, they say. Well, I'm not. I've moved my hosting business to friendlier places and I've picked up a nifty easy-to-remember URL along the way. (Note: is not dead. As soon as I figure out how, I'll be moving it over and keeping the URL.)

Anyway, I'm going to take my unexpected exile as an opportunity -- to grow, to improve, to gain in stature, to mature. In short, no more frivolous posts about meaningless fluff like celebrity sightings and TV shows and Sumo wrestling. Nothing but philosophy, deep thoughts, and grand visions from now on.

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the BLOG...

Posted by JoshHornik at 02:50 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack