Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Lost finale

Okay, so I still haven't watched the Lost season finale, but I've already spoiled it for myself, so I can tell y'all about the little bet I had with myself.

Now, you guys know how I feel about Lost. (And if you don't, there was an LA Times article last week that voiced the very same frustrations I've been posting here for months. Check it out!) I read an interview awhile ago that said they were going to open the hatch in the season finale. That's when I made my little bet. I said to myself, "If they open the hatch, and go inside, and what's inside the hatch is the cliffhanger, then I'll keep watching. If the fact that they open the hatch is the cliffhanger, then that show is dead to me."

We all know how that turned out, don't we?

Emory will still be watching, of course, so I can rely on him to tell me if anything interesting actually happens, but I'm done with the show. Done, I say!

Tales from the Long Weekend

Manic-depressive weekend a-go-go!

Aw, that's not fair. My weekend was full of excitement and good times, but by Monday I was in a crappy mood and I'm not sure why. (This post is long and largely uninteresting! Enjoy!)

Chrome Embrace went well, both Friday and Sunday nights, and all sorts of our friends came out to see it. Actually, I thought I kind of sucked both nights, but other people seemed to like it, so who am I to argue? As I noted to McKenna one night, "The helmet does all the heavy lifting for me." No one can resist the helmet! No really, it went very well. Some laughs went on so long that it was like "Jesus, people! We need to keep this thing moving, here!" Always nice. Plus, there was drinking afterwards. And I'm always in favor of that!

Saturday was Busy McNonstop. I got up early to meet Paul and Mike, and we headed to the EnigmaCon at UCLA. Now our thought was that maybe we could hit this con and hand out postcards to the nerd peoples who might be interested in our show. So Paul, Mike and I met Darren and his friend Chandler there, we all got some postcards, and we were ready to go. Great plan, until we realized that EnigaCon is the Saddest Con in the World! By which I mean, EnigmaCon consisted almost solely of panels, which meant there was no dealer area, and almost nowhere for people to congregate so we could assault them with advertising. Also, there were maybe 50 people in attendance. We tried to hit the couple of spots that were open all day, like the art show and the lounge, but there was no one there. Then we dropped in on this Star Trek panel, and it was so dry and boring and Walter Koenig was there, but he looked like he wanted to die, so we quietly excused ourselves and gave up on the whole deal. I mean, we might have been psyched if we had any interest in the panels, but we didn't, so it was sort of a bust. Good thing it was free! But then Paul, Mike, and I met Nell and a friend of hers for pizza so everything was okay.

I spent the rest of Saturday drinking, first at Corinne's birthday BBQ, then at Trumbo and Laurel's place. I got way too drunk at Trumbo's. The cops came, and everyone sort of left at that point, but I was too drunk to drive (or stand, really) and I remember Laurel saying "Hey, you can crash on the couch," and I said "Nah, I'm fine right here!" THUMP! Just conked out in the middle of the floor. Which is where I regained consciousness at 5:30AM. Then I drove home and slept for real, and I felt fine after that.

After the show on Sunday I finally got to meet Frank's friend Laura from Chicago. She's great. She should move out here. After we left the bar on Sunday it was still relatively early, so on my way home I stopped by Sardo's to wish Brenda a happy birthday. And Josh was there, too, so it was nice to see them both.

Monday I sat around and did nothing, as one should do with one's holidays.


New SMRT-TV today. A thrilling, jam-packed issue of adventure! I didn't contribute much this time around, just the season-ender summations of Deadwood and Veronica Mars. But don't read those if you haven't seen those shows. It totally ruins them. There's plenty of other good stuff to check out, too.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Miracle cure

Listen, I don't want to overstate the potency of Vick's DayQuil, but I'll just say that I took one shot of the stuff last night and I got my voice back. I took another shot this morning and my sore throat is completely gone.

It's funny because last night after rehearsal I was really nervous, since my voice didn't seem to be improving at all and may actually have become worse. Plus my throat was really hurting. And I was like "Great, I'm screwed." So I grabbed some DayQuil at Ralph's on the way home and seriously, the moment I took it, it was like a magical healing light. Don't ask me to sing tenor anytime soon, but I totally talk normal again.

The conclusion we can come to here is that I lead a charmed life.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005






The suspense is killing me!

(I know, that was way too mean to Lost, but sometimes I'm just a slave to the joke.)

Great timing. Seriously, really great.

Did I mention that my voice is making every effort to go away? My throat's sore and my voice is waning. I've still got it right now, and I'm talking as little as possible, but I'm still really nervous about it. I've been taking it easy the last few days (since the sore throat surfaced), avoiding yelling, singing in the car, and drinking alcohol. Those are three of my FAVORITE ACTIVITIES. And today I've been drinking tea all day and I HATE TEA. Stupid voice. I hate everything.

This happened once before, you know. Back in high school. The week of dress rehearsals for Harvey, and my voice was just this raspy, grating thing. It got completely better the day before opening night. Fingers crossed!

I'm totally famous


Okay, so my name isn't mentioned. But that's totally my Lost haiku.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

"The Confusion" is already delightful

"May I infer, from this, that insurance fraud is a common failing of slave-owners?"

"Some of them are completely unethical," Moseh confided.


Yap, yap, yap

Looks like Slate dislikes voiceovers as much as I do.

Seriously, voiceovers suck. I was watching The Shawshank Redemption on cable the other day, and there's not a damn bit of information in Morgan Freeman's voiceover that you couldn't glean what was happening on the screen. I'm pleased to report that Veronica Mars's voiceover had been almost completely phased-out by season's end. It's a visual medium, folks. You don't need that crap. Chris Claremont should take note of this, as well.

Monday, May 23, 2005

The work times are actually killing me

Oh, man. I take back all that stuff about how glad I am not to do play stuff the next few days. I would do play stuff for the next few years if it meant I could skip out of work today. I still haven't really come down from this weekend yet, and in my present overexcited mental state, work is simply INTOLERABLE. I want to be out having ADVENTURES, dammit! In the sun! Where it's WARM! Argh!

Chrome Embrace

Indulge me in a bit of self-promotion, here.

Should you, the readers at home, wish to see Forget My Chrome Embrace (and for God's sake, why wouldn't you?), then all relevant information about dates and tickets and places and the like can be found here.

C'mon, you know you want to see it. It's about Transformers erotic fan fiction! How can you resist?

The good times are killing me

I've been busy as hell this whole week, and this weekend was no exception. Busy, but extremely satisfying.

There was a moment at dinner on Saturday, where I looked around at Whitney, Nell, Frank, Paul, Darren, and Amy, some of whom I had known for years, some just for weeks, and some I had just met, and we were all talking and laughing and drinking wine and eating pasta, and somewhere in me there was just this sigh of contentment, like "Yes. This is All Right." It felt like in that particular time and place, everything was going the way it ought to be going.

Not to get all flowery on you, but it was a nice moment.

Suffice to say, Forget My Chrome Embrace went up this weekend, and the reception was really great. There comes a point in doing any play where you forget so much of it's supposed to be funny, and you figure no one will laugh or enjoy it, but last night put all those fears to rest. I guess Frank and Paul will be cutting some stuff out this week (the play's running long), and we'll actually have sound cues in the future, but if all shows run as well as this weekend's did, then that'll be very nice, I think.

Anyway, I'm just wiped. The past week has been awesome, but draining. It's nice that I have a few days before we have to do anything play-related again.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005


So I guess Kelsey Grammer will be playing Beast in X3. That's a good choice. Vinnie Jones is the Juggernaut, and I'm always glad to see Vinnie Jones. The writers are one of the guys with story credit on X2 and the writer of Mr. and Mrs. Smith. They're also two of the writing "forces" that brought you Elektra. As Emory has noted to me in the past, we are now in an era where our superhero movies are entering uncharted and possibly disasterous territory. I'm hoping for the best, but expecting the worst.

Here's what I'll say about Star Wars, then I can put it away. Anyone who says the prequels are Anakin's story are drunk. Were they Anakin's story, he would have at one point been likeable, and then we would have actually learned what made him go bad. The prequels are the Empire's story. We now know, step by step, how the Empire came to be. Which is all fine on paper, but in actualily is about as fun as watching the proverbial paint dry. The consensus about Episode III seems to indicate that it's the best of the lot, but what damn do I give about characters I've never liked carrying out actions whose results are already known to me? I am Done with Star Wars, just as I was Done with The X-Files. I can go back to the happier times, look at the better previous installments, but none of it will really make my heart soar anymore. I've moved on.

Still, Empire. Damn, that's a good movie.

Monday, May 16, 2005

I know, I know!

The last few days people will say "Hey, you got your haircut!" and then sort of trail off because there is nothing nice to say about it whatsoever.

I know my hair is terrible right now. I know I look like a junior SS officer. God willing, it will grow out soon. Attractive ladies, please avoid meeting me until it has done so.

Maybe I should just cut the top short and get rid of the part altogether. That might help. But then I'd have to go back to the salon. Ick. Grow, you stupid hair!

Haughty Melodic

From what I've listened to thus far of the new Mike Doughty album, I think I prefer when he's just by himself, rather than backed by a band chock full of bland adult contemporary stylings. "Overproduced" is the word that comes to mind. Doughty's strengths are his vocals and his lyrics. Why bury them?

I'll have time today to listen to the whole album, since I have to go out to Santa Monica and all, and maybe it'll start growing on me, but right now I'm more than a little disappointed.

Perhaps I should not have spoiled myself by downloading bare-bones versions of several of these songs a few years ago. Maybe I just need time to adjust to the new versions. Let's hope that's it.

Friday, May 13, 2005

More summer movies

While I was reading this, I thought to myself, "Maybe I should link to this on my blog." Then I hit the description of Herbie: Fully Loaded and nearly ruptured a blood vessel while trying to contain my mirth in an office environment. Seriously, I had to go out in the hall. Then I came back in and read the descriptions of Mindhunters and The Fantastic Four, and knew it was a lock.

Read, and enjoy!

Thursday, May 12, 2005

The two Onions

These days it's not uncommon for me to find the reviews and features of the Onion A.V. Club to be funnier than the content of the actual Onion. Case in point, this week's summer movie preview, which had this to say about the upcoming Pink Panther remake with Steve Martin:

The Pink Panther
Director: Shawn Levy
Cast: Steve Martin, Kevin Kline, Beyoncé Knowles
Causes for excitement: There is no law forcing anyone to see it.
Probable cause for disappointment: It exists.

I hear you, Onion. I hear you.

Get out of my head

Considering my visit with Ali this morning, I simply have to come to the conclusion that today's Dinosaur Comics is reading my mind. How did they know???

Adventures and surprises

Sweet, sweet Veronica Mars. Truly you are the brightest star on the non-pay-cable networks. Despite being pretty poorly shot and more than a little hectic, the season finale was still totally awesome. Not quite as good as last week's episode, I thought, but still awesome. And there were several frustrating cliffhangers for next season's premiere. Frustrating only in the sense that I have to wait for months and months. I can't remember the last show I watched that had a season-ending cliffhanger. X-Files, I guess, and we all remember how long ago that was. Man, when are those DVDs coming out? I want to watch the whole thing again, knowing what I know now.

About 15 minutes before the end, though, I got a phone call. I didn't answer it (right in the middle of the climax, here!), but it turned out to be Ali. She was in town for the night on her way to Arizona to begin her new life adventures, and wanted to see how I was doing. We agreed to meet for coffee this morning. I pulled up to where she was staying around 7 AM, and she came staggering out of the house, holding her hand up to protect from the glare of the sun and muttered "There's not many people I would get up this early for." Awwww! She's going to be interning in Arizona for the summer, then she'll come back to CA so she can go to grad school in the fall of next year. But it was good to see her, no matter how briefly. I've kind of been in a pissy mood all week, and seeing Ali cheered me immensely. That and finally catching up on sleep lost since this weekend.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005


When I left Frank's last night, the movie was all edited, and Paul was just adding the "Nineteen years ago..." title cards and the like. On the one hand, we find it very, very funny. We would just watch certain clips over and over. On the other hand, I'm kind of worried that absolutely no one else will find it even remotely amusing. Still, someone who doesn't think Emory bellowing "GOD DAMMIT!" in a gravelly voice is funny is probably someone I don't want to associate myself with.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Mayday and why we are bad at it

So, don't expect the Paul Cibis Memorial Team Memorial Team's Mayday film to screen in competition this year. Poor Paul was nearly dead at 11 and the film wasn't fully edited, so no competition for us. I think our primary sin was being wildly overambitious. It's not every 24-hour film that combines elements of Nero Wolfe and Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. But get too many ideas in your head and you wind up shooting until 7 in the morning. BAD NEWS. Anyway, it's a little disappointing to have not finished in time.

On the other hand, I think the movie is unbelievably funny. And it's anchored by an absolutely tour-de-force performance by our very own Emory Herbertson. And Frank's stuff is just fantastic. And Nell (the actress from Frank's play who Paul roped into acting for us) was really great and completely agreeable to whatever weird shit we came up with. And we certainly want to thank Boots, Mittens, and Socks, who bravely sacrificed their lives in the name of art.

Anyway, next Mayday: FOCUS! Like a LASER! And maybe an additional editor wouldn't hurt.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Double Fine comics

What's not to like about a comic where the author, Chewbacca, O-Ren Ishi, and a magical bear* are all on some sort of treasure hunting quest?

NOTHING, that's what!

*Indiana Jones used to be with them, but O-Ren cut his head off. As she does.

The weekend, and its bittersweet consistency

Well, tomorrow brings the third big Mayday 24-hour film contest. Frank, Paul, Emory, Matt, Leslie and I finally got our shit together to form a team this year, and we intend to destroy all comers. DESTROY THEM. Yes, it will be The Paul Cibis Memorial Team Memorial Team (not a typo) standing over the broken and burnt bodies of our enemies when we actually get around to judging these things. Yes, sir.

In other news, I don't know if I'll see Jess again before she moves to New York on Saturday. I got to say goodbye to her last night at her going away shindig at Gower Gulch, but it'd still be nice to see her once more before she drives off into the sunset (or, more appropriately, sun rise).

In summary, this weekend is both giddily promising and rather depressing. Emotional rollercoasters are a blast!

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Go Bucky, go!

I am psyched to read Ed Brubaker's Captain America run, I'll tell you that much. I suppose it makes me look a bit bloodthirsty, linking to that article to express my excitement, but I really like the ideas Brubaker has and the thought he's put into it. Of COURSE Cap and Bucky killed guys. It was friggin' World War II! Anyway, the trade comes out this summer, I believe. I'm all over it.

Also, please, go buy Livewires. It's selling fuck all, but it's a blast. Seriously.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005


Perhaps you have had a bad day. Perhaps some charming Psychonauts comics would make your day better. Or perhaps they won't. Perhaps you don't give a damn. You ought to, though. Give a damn. There are people in this world who live without damns every day, and you could make their lives better.

Yeah, I don't know what I'm talking about, either.

New Top 10?

We can add this to the "not sure how I feel about it" column.

On the one hand, it's new Top 10. On the other hand, it's new Top 10 not done by Moore, Ha, and Cannon. I guess I'll get the first issue and see how it goes.

It's funny because I was just re-reading Top 10 last night. Man, I love that book. There's just a million things going on in every page. Issue #10 is easily one of my all-time favorite single issues. I just don't see how a new creative team could really match it.

Also, I know none of you care about this. BUT I DO!

Monday, May 02, 2005


In case you forgot, issue number 3 is up and about. I don't have anything in this issue, because I'm a total flake, but expect a new TV on DVD review in a fortnight.

Important Psychonauts update

I beat it this weekend. The final level is a nightmare, literally and figuratively. Oh, the horrible meat grinding sounds. Also, I'm pretty sure the last boss is voiced by the guy who did LeChuck in The Curse of Monkey Island. And the main character's dad was Principal Snyder on Buffy.

I wish I could say I didn't spend all of Saturday night on Psychonauts, but that would be a lie. Friday night I went over to Frank's and helped move some furniture around and then Jess and I stayed up late drinking and talking as Frank snoozed on the floor. It's an important step for Jess and I that we can stay up late drinking in moderation, so we don't end up shit-faced and slapping each other around. I think we're making great progress. Shame she's moving to New York at the end of the week.