Wednesday, August 31, 2005

media update: August

Asterisks denote something I particularly enjoyed or found especially worthy of my time; your mileage may vary. Also, the fact that the words "bitch", "whores", "slut", and "idiot girls" appear in some of the titles is a complete coincidence, not a sign of internalized misogyny.


1. The Bitch Posse by Martha O'Connor: Three troubled teenage girls form a bond which lasts throughout adulthood, thanks to a horrible secret they all share. A bit melodramatic; with all the cutting and drugs, it reminded me of a literary version of Thirteen.

2. Luscious Lemon* by Heather Swain: My god, I starred a chick-lit book? Damn, I'm getting soft in my old age. But at any rate, just so you know, the cheerful cover, the too-cutesy title, and the perky blurb on the back are incredibly deceptive; this book gets very dark and sad (to say why would be a spoiler), and is much better than those things would lead you to believe.

3. Broken Prey by John Sandford: A vicious (as opposed to, you know, the cute 'n' cuddly kind) killer is on the loose in Minnesota. Nice and twisty, just the way I like 'em.

4. Whores on the Hill* by Colleen Curran: Now that's a title. Anyway, this is a great book about a group of friends attending an all-girl's Catholic school in the late 80's and the trouble they get into. Similar to #1, but not as dark and much better in my opinion.

5. Dearly Devoted Dexter* by Jeff Lindsay: Much better than its predecessor, this novel about a serial killer who channels his impulses by only going after bad guys is blackly funny and full of Grand Guignol gore. Not for the squeamish!

6. Zero Hour by S.D. Perry: Perhaps the only thing geekier than playing video games (which I say as a lifetime, hardcore gamer, mind) is reading a novelization of a video game.

7. The Starter Wife* by Gigi Levangie Grazer: Great literature? Not by a long shot. Entertaining? Wildly so.

Read so far this year: 43


1. A Cook's Tour* by Anthony Bourdain: A fascinating culinary travelogue that really made me want to visit Vietnam. Cambodia, though? Not so much.

2. Stranger Than Fiction by Chuck Palahniuk: Various essays ranging from the sexual displays at the Montana Testicle Festival to people who are obsessed with building their own castles. Interesting, but I prefer his fiction.

3. The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks: If you think I could resist something with that title, you just don't know me all that well, my friend. Unfortunately, it wasn't nearly as good as I thought it would be.

4. We Thought You Would Be Prettier: True Tales of the Dorkiest Girl Alive by Laurie Notaro: See #3.

5. The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2003* (anthology): Hey, anything that includes Lynda Barry and an essay on one author's ill-conceived childhood Halloween costume (Hitler) is bueno by me.

6. The Idiot Girls' Action-Adventure Club by Laurie Notaro: Overrated, but better than #4.

7. Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith by Anne Lamott: I may not be religious, but these meditations on faith are wonderful.

8. Confessions of a Recovering Slut by Hollis Gillespie: Apparently, August is Awesome Title Month. But anyway, I remain convinced that Hollis Gillespie is actually my friend Susan in disguise, and NO, not because of the title, but because they're both hysterically funny Southern women who share a lovingly cynical mindset.

Read so far this year: 35


1. Beauty Pop* vols. 1-2 by Arai Kiyoko

2. The Prince Who Fell in Love by Ako Shimaki

3. Sensitive Pornograph by Sakura Ashika: No, I didn't forget a "y"; that's how the author spells it.

4. Swan* vol. 2 by Ariyoshi Kyoko: I am an absolute sucker for 70's shojo, and this ballet manga is an excellent example of the genre at its best.

5. Cinderella Boy by Yumeno Makoto

6. Peach Girl: Change of Heart vol. 10 by Miwa Ueda

7. Level C vol. 2 by Aoi Futaba and Kurenai Mitsuba

8. La Suite d'Amour du Chat Noire by Takemiya Satoru

9. Brother Dear Brother* by Riyoko Ikeda: The basis for one of my all-time favorite anime series, this is about the psychological damage girls inflict upon each other in an effort to be popular.

10. Super Double* by Hoshino Lily

Read so far this year: 77


1. Constantine: G, C, M, D, and I watched this thinking it would be so howlingly bad that we could MST3K it while watching, but it wasn't nearly as terrible as we'd thought it would be. Convoluted and full of mumbo-jumbo, to be sure, but it had some good scenes. Keanu Reeves is still the worst actor of all time, though.

2. The Transporter*: After I said, only half-jokingly, that white men can't do martial arts, G sat me down in front of this movie. The plot is negligible, but Jason Statham is one sexy bad-ass cracker, and the fight in the oil puddle alone earns this flick a star. I'll be seeing the sequel, oh yes.

3. Skeleton Key*: A nice, spooky little Southern-fried flick in which Kate Hudson finds some very bad things behind locked doors. Interesting twist at the end, too. Not great art by any means, but I enjoyed it.

4. The Abyss: I lost a bet and G made me watch it. It was actually pretty good, but oy, so damn long!

5. First Daughter: Yeah, yeah, I know.

6. Resident Evil Apocalypse: Much better than the first installment, mainly because they actually had characters from the games this time around. Now I require an RE movie with Leon Kennedy, preferably featuring many nude scenes. Oh yeah...lots of nude scenes. Leon all sweaty and bruised, soap running down muscled thighs as he...

I'll be back in about ten minutes.

[Ten minutes later]

7. Kinsey: Illuminating biopic of sexual pioneer Alfred Kinsey. Drags in parts, but it has a way of grabbing your attention again. "Zzzz...oh my god, was that an actual vadge shot??"

8. The Woodsman: Ordinarily I'd make a snarky comment about "wood", but since this is a movie about a child molester, I didn't think it was appropriate. Excellent performances, dreary flick.

9. The Stepford Wives*: Lacks quite a bit of the satirical sting of the original, but I still enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. "Why don't I just spell BIG JEW on my front lawn with pinecones?"

Seen so far this year: 29

Friday, August 26, 2005


I'm really, really bored, and I still have about 17 hours until I can see my NS, so I conducted a highly unscientific experiment to determine what my iTunes would be like if it were a human. I put it on shuffle and jotted down the first 50 songs it played, to wit:

1. "All She Wants Is" by Duran Duran
2. "Sexual Healing" by Soul Asylum
3. "Praise You" by Fatboy Slim
4. "Teenage Lust (Pimpin' Ain't Easy Mix)" by Jesus & Mary Chain
5. "Ivies Domain" from Resident Evil
6. "Be My Yoko Ono" by Barenaked Ladies
7. "The Second Floor" from Resident Evil 2
8. "Waitress" by Live
9. "Never Can Say Goodbye" by The Communards
10. "The Wrong Way" by Sublime
11. "The Beautiful People" by Marilyn Manson
12. "Waltz" by Suneohair
13. "Common People" by Pulp
14. "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor
15. "c30, C60, C90, Go" by Bow Wow Wow
16. "Everybody Shake It Buddy" by KIX-S
17. "Two of Hearts" by Brad Walsh
18. "We Both Reached for the Gun" from the Chicago soundtrack
19. "Smiling" by Kitchens of Distinction
20. "You Are My World" by Jimmy Somerville
21. "Bit Part" by The Lemonheads
22. "James Bondage" by Pansy Division
23. "The Impression That I Get" by the Mighty Mighty Bosstones
24. "Planet Tokyo" by Puffy AmiYumi
25. "Frenzy" by Screamin' Jay Hawkins
26. "New Age Girl" by Deadeye Dick
27. "Feel Good Inc." by Gorillaz
28. "Luck" by The Owls
29. "Fame" by Irene Cara
30. "Doowutchalike" by Digital Underground
31. "St. Teresa" by Joan Osborne
32. "Lovely Merry-Go-Round" by Pipo Angels
33. "It Might Not Be Reachable Anymore" from Bronze
34. "...and the Angels Weep" from Silent Hill 3
35. "The Only One I Could Stand" by The Waterlillies
36. "Jack U Off" by Pansy Division
37. "Mindcontroller" by 80 Aum
38. "Dancing Queen" by ABBA
39. "Get A Grip on Yourself" by The Stranglers
40. "The Rain, the Park, and Other Things" by The Cowsills
41. "Anniversary Song" by Cowboy Junkies
42. "Ca Plane Pour Moi" by Plastic Bertrand
43. "Dancin'" from Xanadu
44. "Horror Business" by The Misfits
45. "Turning Japanese" by The Vapors
46. "T'en Va Pas" by Elsa
47. "At My Most Beautiful" by REM
48. "Xanadu" by Olivia Newton-John
49. "A Dame With A Rod" by Juliana Hatfield


Rod...uh huh huh huh huh...uh huh huh huh huh...

Er, sorry.

50. "We Were Lovers" by Jean-Jacques Burnel

Examining the evidence, it is my conclusion that my iTunes, if it were a human being, would be a French-Canadian gay male in his early twenties who lives in his parents' basement and, when he's not working behind the counter of an independent music store/cafe/comic book store, he plays video games, watches anime, and masturbates. His biggest dream is to move to New York City, just so he can get Chinese food at 3AM. He has a secret crush on Daniel Clowes and thinks Diana Ross is one fierce bitch.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I'm picking out a Thermos for you

A by-no-means comprehensive, completely random list of some of my favorite things at this very moment!

1. Shojo Beat magazine: This isn’t the first English-language magazine devoted to shojo (girls’) manga, but it’s the biggest and the best. My personal favorites are Godchild, a gothic (in the original sense of the word, not the cheesy Hot Topic sense) series about a mysterious count solving murders in Victorian England, and Nana, about two very different women who share the same name.

2. “Starved”: A hysterically funny, unrepentantly offensive, and incredibly caustic sitcom about a group of New Yorkers with some serious food issues. I was hooked the second the main character started spraying colonic water all over a horrified waiting room…which probably says something about my maturity level, or lack thereof.

3. White cheddar Cheez-Its: It’s a delicious salt extravaganza!

4. “Candy Pop in Love” by Tommy February6: I never, ever get sick of this song.

5. G: He makes my life as good as an ABBA song….as good as “Dancing Queen”, even!

6. True Lemon: Thanks to these handy little packets of crystallized lemon, I’ve been drinking way more water than I used to. I’m also peeing more, but hey, sacrifices must be made.

7. When something stereotypically manly comes on TV and G goes “Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeah”. You kind of have to be there, but trust me, it rules muchly.

8. Football: Dear Christ, who would have ever thought I’d enjoy football? ME, a pasty, lazy woman whose sole ditching infraction in school came during the dreaded Sports Day? But yes, I find myself enjoying it, even though I don’t understand it…kind of like modern art, or Philip Glass.

9. The Jerk: What a great movie. Seriously. You can keep A Confederacy of Dunces; Navin Johnson is and always will be the ultimate Holy Fool.

10. Behold, the glory of the Iceland pony:

Look at that marvelous beast! It must have spent a good five hours in styling before that picture was shot! Admire that golden silky mane! I love horses, and when I finally get to ride one, my screams of “PONYPONYPONYYYYYYY!” will be heard all the way back in the US.

Friday, August 19, 2005

in defense of Jude Law's wang

Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears! I come to praise Jude Law’s penis, not to bury it.

Lately there’s been a bit of an uproar over a paparazzi shot of Jude in which his nannybanger is fully visible, and the snarky comments have been flying. People snickered about his teeny weenie or made schadenfreudian remarks about how he may have tons of money and breathtakingly good looks, but at least he’s hung like an acorn, so neener neener!

Now, my crush on Jude has waned a bit in light of his recent dalliances with his nanny, for I don’t care HOW handsome he is, cheaters suck. Still, in gratitude for the many lustful thoughts I've had about him, I feel I must put cursor to screen and defend Jude’s manly organ.

(Side note: I was going to post the picture, but decided against it as I’m at work, and besides, most of the free world has probably seen it by now. If you’re one of the few who hasn’t, you can see it at Fleshbot, a site which is decidedly NOT SAFE FOR WORK. Unless, of course, you work at Hustler or something, in which case, ask Larry if he’s hiring.)


The dude had been swimming, so assuming the water was cold, of course Jude Jr. is going to curl up for warmth! There, there, buddy…it’s okay.


I've heard of acorns growing into mighty oaks with just a flash of sweet, creamy cleavage.


I can’t vouch for this one myself, but it’s paraphrased from other comments I've read online.


I hasten to add that I’m not speaking for all women or gay/bisexual men here. That said, come on...who other than a porn star really needs a Louisville Slugger for a penis? Can you say ouch? Some of the penises I've seen in porn have been so eyepoppingly ginormous most women would have needed an episiotomy and a cookie jar full of muscle relaxants to accommodate them.

So, Jude, although you may be humiliated by the comments, chin up, lad. You could be hung like a pinky and, as Dennis Miller once said of President Clinton, still get more ass than the backseat of a rental car. But quit cheating on your significant others, okay? Just because it’s there doesn’t mean you have to eat it.


Monday, August 15, 2005

weekend update: tofuriffic!


I got up from my nap earlier than usual because K wanted to go see Skeleton Key. I don’t even remember the last time just the two of us did something together, so it was really nice. The movie itself wasn’t phenomenal or anything, but I enjoyed it; it was a nice, creepy little Southern gothic thriller. Afterwards, we went home and I showered and spent the rest of the night watching anime and messing around online.


After I got up, I had breakfast, messed around online, and read until it was time to head over to G’s. When I got there, we hugged and kissed and then we went to the Tofu Festival, which was being held in Little Tokyo. There were lots of booths set up selling both gifts and food; you had to buy tickets for the food, sort of like Taste of Minnesota, so I got $10 worth and we walked around. I had spam musubi (which substituted tofu for the rice, not the spam, which made NO sense to me at all!), a Coke, rainbow mochi, and a snow cone; G had a Sprite and a plate of fried noodles. I also bought a cute shirt at one of the booths.

“Hey, where’s Tofuzilla?” G asked me, and after scanning the crowd, I noticed someone walking around in a tofu costume.

“I think that’s him,” I said, pointing.

G stared at me. “THAT’S Tofuzilla? That walking heatstroke victim? You made it sound like there’d be some huge Godzilla made out of tofu, breathing fire and flinging copters around and stuff!”

“I said no such thing!” I cried.

He was mollified, fortunately, by TAIKOproject, a taiko drum team made up of cute teenage boys and girls. They were phenomenal; at one point, they mentioned that they were selected to compete in the World Taiko Championships in Japan next month, and they’re the first American team to make the finals, so you know they have to be good! I’ve always loved live drum music---it awakens the primal instinct in me---so I enjoyed it too.

Afterwards, we went to Kinokuniya so I could get my usual magazines, and then we went to Daisuke for dinner. They’ve got great food, but unfortunately every single time they’ve been slow, and Saturday night was no exception. I had teriyaki steak, rice, and miso soup, and G had California rolls. I also ordered a Coke, which never came…grrr. Still, the waitress was by herself and they were crowded, so I forgave her.

Oh, and it sucked because by the time we got back to the mall, the supermarket had closed, so I wasn’t able to get my junk food, AND I wasn’t able to get the parking validated either! It cost a whopping $15 when we left, which I insisted on paying because G drove, and besides he shouldn't have to pay everything just because he was born with a schwanz.

Back at G’s, we watched the latest Bokusatsu Tenshi Dokuro-chan and Gun x Sword, as well as some really bad softcore porn on Cinemax (Busty Cops), before going to bed.


Saturday was strictly for me, so Sunday was strictly for G! Unfortunately, we were forced to stick around for the cable guy, who was supposed to show up at 9 to fix the holes he’d left in G’s walls…and of course, he never came. Fucker.

Anyway, we ate breakfast while watching First Daughter on HBO, and then we watched a documentary on Tim Schafer (video game designer) on G4 and played a game of Scene It. He whipped my ass, and as payment, he insisted that we watch the director’s cut of The Abyss. Man, was that shit long! I started getting really tired about halfway through, so he turned it off and we napped for a couple of hours on the couch. When we woke up, we finished watching the movie. It was actually not bad, although it’s certainly not something I care to sit through again.

Then at 8, we had dinner while watching the Giants play the Browns in a pre-season game. Of course, I’m totally clueless as to the intricacies of the rules, but G is a very patient teacher and explained things as it went along. I love watching him get so worked up over football! After the game (Giants lost), we watched 2 x 2 = Shinobuden and then went to bed around midnight.

And that’s the way it was.

Friday, August 12, 2005

a hero ain't just a sandwich

A couple of nights ago, I was getting a bag of groceries out of the front seat of my car, and oh, a playful little breeze thought it would be funny to slam my car door right into the tender meat of my upper arm. It hurt so friggin’ bad that I squatted down on the ground, rubbing my bicep and letting loose with a stream of obscenities that would have been cut from The Aristocrats for being too offensive.

The end result of this injury was, of course, a massive bruise. I tend to bruise easily, thanks to mild anemia; I always look like a banana gone bad. Trust me, though, this would have bruised anyone who wasn’t clad in a suit of armor or a Kevlar sweater. There’s not much I can do about it except slather it with vitamin K cream and wait for it to go away, and I pretty much forget about it unless I poke it while getting dressed or roll over on my arm in the middle of the night.

Last night I went to a drugstore near home to buy white cheddar Cheez-Its and pantyliners, and when I went up to the counter to pay, the same cashier I always see was working the register. We exchanged pleasantries, and he rang me up. As I dug through my wallet looking for a five, I noticed him staring at my bruise.

“Hey, um…” he said, coughing. “This is none of my business, but if someone did that to you, I will totally kick their ass.”

People have the capacity for such tenderness, right when you least expect it.