Thursday, January 31, 2008

Typo of the Day

From one of the way-too-many blog posts on my magazine's Web page, discovered by one of the copyeditors on staff:
... Everything looks honky dory.

Please, people: Don't play the race card.

Soylent Green is people! It's people!

Yahoo posted a notably horrible recipe on its main page the other day.

The recipe, for dressing up ramen noodles, is beyond dire--even the Food Network's Sandra Lee would turn up her nose at it.

But I just love the third comment down:
no way i would eat this or anyone in my family

That's probably a good attitude to have, unless your plane crashes in the Andes. And even then, I'd choose a stranger.

(Blogging resuming earlier than I thought, but will be sporadic for a while.)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A drive-by post

OK, I know I said no posts for another week, but I just had to share this nugget from the news yesterday:
Actor Jon Voight, a product of Yonkers, N.Y., warmed up [Giuliani's Florida campaign] crowds by reminding them of how, under Giuliani, New York City was transformed into a much safer, cleaner and more livable city.

"God sent an angel, his name was Rudy Giuliani," said Voight, adding: "He's kind of a genius."

Ah, but what kind of genius?

As a side benefit of this quotation, I'm starting to get an insight into Angelina Jolie's psychopathology, too.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

So, can anyone explain ...

Just why would anyone would want to be president after He Who Must Not Be Named? Surely, cleaning up his myriad messes will be the most thankless task any president has ever had. Or, I guess should say starting to clean up his messes, as it's going to take decades.

And on that note, I'm going to take a wee bloggy break. No new posts for two weeks or so.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Number of movies I've seen that are up for Oscars this year

One.* (List here.)

There was a time I used to go to the movies about twice a month. Now I pretty much wait for everything to come out on DVD.

It's not the same, I know.

*Of the major categories--picture, director, actor, actress, supporting actor, supporting actress, screenplay--not the techier awards.

UPDATE: Whoops, I didn't mean this to be a mystery. The only one of the major nominees I've seen is Away from Her, with nominee Julie Christie, who might actually have a shot at winning.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Postcard of the Day

Radio City Music Hall Auditorium, New York City.

Been a while since I was there, but I don't quite remember that color scheme.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

You Asked for It, Part XIV

Recent searches that stranded visitors on The Velvet Blog:

--we are living in hell
--dick cheney is eating cats
--my dogs smells
--activia makes you poop
--i hated my anniversary gift

Glad to be of service.

(PS: If you combine all of these, it sounds like a bad co-production of Lifetime and the Sci-Fi Channel.)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Cliche watch

I hereby declare a moratorium on--wait for it!--"wait for it".

Thank you for your cooperation.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Rejected trailer for an early rough cut of Cloverfield

Looks pretty good! The monster's eyes seem to follow you around the room.

Most perplexing series of movie-sequel titles ever

In order:
First Blood
Rambo: First Blood Part II
Rambo III

Why, you'd think the filmmakers didn't care about making sense!

Monday, January 14, 2008

What are the 39 steps?

The Velvet Blog took a field trip to Broadway this weekend to see the new play The 39 Steps, based on the film directed by Alfred Hitchcock and the novel by John Buchan. Actually, it hews closely to the plotline of the film, which plays fast and loose with the book, but turns it into an full-out comedy. What a lot of fun! The show has a limited engagement in New York. If it hits the road after that and comes to your city, go.

TVB can't treat you all to tickets, but here's a copy of the whole film from that great resource, the Internet Archive. (I haven't watched this all the way through, so I'm not sure how watchable this print is.)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Backhanded Compliment of the Day

A giant sculpture of a spider by Louise Bourgeois ... that has been luring the crowds to Tate Modern on London's South Bank, has been donated to the gallery, the BBC reported. ... It is the largest of a series of spiders made by Ms. Bourgeois, now 96. The artist, who lives in New York, has described the piece as "an ode to my mother, my best friend." She added: "Like spiders, my mother was very clever. Spiders are friendly presences that eat mosquitoes." --The New York Times

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Reasons why voters are looking for "change"

--Always a pleasant surprise when found under sofa cushions.
--Only way to get anything out of that damned vending machine (it hates dollar bills).
--Jobs outsourced offshore, so, really, they need every penny.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Winners & losers

Terrific Jon Swift post here. His satirical analysis is only slightly more absurd than that of the real TV pundits.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Postcard of the Day

New York, NY, Aug. 15, 7 a.m., 1942

I can't remember when I ever enjoyed anything so much. Words fail me.


Click to embiggen.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Well, it's been long, dispiriting campaign season, but at last it's over!

Congratulations to President Obama!

I'm really glad this brings the whole process to a close. What a relief!

UPDATE: I've just been informed that Obama merely won the Iowa caucus for the Democratic nomination. I'm terribly embarrassed.

Wait ...

This means that campaigning will go on for 10 more months?


Thursday, January 03, 2008

Dining out with the Surrealists

From the current issue of The New Yorker:
Tailor's specialty, across the menu, is flavors that don't occur together in nature: pork belly and butterscotch, a befuddlingly appealing Scotch infused with pumpernickel.

Other flavors that don't occur together in nature: beets with cocoa, foie gras with peanut butter. But there's a reason no one would ever put combinations that bizarre together, right?
The sweet stuff has lots of salt--beet ravioli with cocoa caviar?--and the salty stuff has lots of sweet. Peanut butter, cocoa caramel, and something called "pear soil" don't do much to improve "the foie" ...

Sigh. I stand corrected.
--as a waitress referred to it recently--

What a scamp!
... but a dish of roasted duck, spaghetti squash, raisin dashi, and chanterelles (tiny as thumbtacks) is absolutely magnificent.

No, I'm pretty sure those were actual thumbtacks.
Given the sugariness of most of the main offerings, dessert is pretty unnecessary, and one, the rum-braised banana with mustard ice cream, is downright scary: a banana is frozen and dehydrated into a large chip--a phallic fossil.

No, I'm pretty sure that was an actual phallic fossil.
If you're in an adventurous mood, ...

Why do I think something truly horrendous is coming up?
... it's better to order another drink. There's the Bazooka, made with bubble-gum cordial, or the Asa Gohan, which means "breakfast food" in Japanese and is supposed to taste like a bowl of Grape-Nuts. (Open Tuesdays through Sundays for dinner. Entrées $24-$27.)

Make mine an Alka-Seltzer, and don't put anything weird in it.

Photo of the Day

For the record, "chicken" came first.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Songs I liked in 2007

Consider this just a sampling, rather than Jim's 2007 Best Of.

Midlake, "Young Bride," Trials of Van Occupanther (OK, the album this comes from was released in 2006, but I only heard it recently)

Midlake, "Bandits," Trials of Van Occupanther

The newly renamed Silver Seas, formerly The Bees (U.S.), "The Country Life," High Society

The Brother Kite, "Not the Only One," Waiting for the Time to be Right

Regina Spektor, "Better," Begin to Hope

Sissy Wish, "Float"

Rilo Kiley, "Silver Lining," Under the Blacklight

Let's Go Sailing, "Sideways," The Chaos in Order

Feist, "1,2,3,4," The Reminder

Swan Dive, "Tender Love," Until

Rhianna, "Shut Up and Drive." My guilty-pleasure, Top 40, bubble-gum fave. Yes, I'm 45 years old, but that is catchy as all hell. Don't let this spoil my indie cred.