01/29/06 - Who the hell is Dane Cook?!?

Dude, I'm getting old.

That's the only explaination.

See, I've been reading Entertainment Weekly each week for over a decade, and I pride myself of being in the loop. I generally know, before reading the article, about the person, show, movie, place, event, etc. (The one exception was when I didn't know who any of the people on the "Country Rebels" cover were last year ... but I actually took pride in not knowing who "Big and Rich" or "Gretchen Wilson" were ...)

Hell, I get most of the magazine's throwaway comments, side jokes and glib celebrity tidbits. This was my magazine.

Until last fall. That's when there was a two or three page article about Dane Cook.

Who the hell is Dane Cook?!?

And why does he warrant a three page spread in this magazine??

Now, my brother is a man in the know. He deals with the high school childrens on a daily basis at his coffee shop. One might say he has the mentals of a high school kid. In fact, two or three might say that.

Anyway, he knew of this Dane Cook. But he also has a myspace account with more than nine friends. In fact, the way I hear it is that is exactly Mr. Cook's primary outlet - this myspace.

And honestly I don't get myspace. What exactly are you supposed to do there? It's not really for meeting people, it's not really e-mail, it's not really a blog ... what is it? Seriously!! "A place for friends". Um, I have friends. They're in the real world, where I interact with them and other people.

But back to Dane Cook (which can't be his real name, c'mon!) Last night was a rerun of the Saturday Night Live he hosted last month. At first I was amazed that someone so random hosted Saturday Night Live, then I looked around ... they let Lance Armstrong, Jon Heder (who really is a one-trick pony, just admit it) and Megan Mullally host recently. God, I hate Megan Mullally. So it's really not crazy. Still, when it's surrounded by Alec Baldwin's 12th time hosting and Steve Martin's 14th time, it seems a little flash in the pan.

The thing that got me was his monologue. It was the longest monologue I've ever seen on Saturday Night Live ever. It just went on and on and on. And it was all standup. Now, I must say that when Chris Rock hosted about ten years ago all he did was standup during his monologue. But he was funny. Maybe I built Dane Cook up too much from all of the articles and I've read about him, but really, he wasn't that funny. I mean, I know many other 30 year old gay men who have observational humor that's much more amusing.

So I turned off the TV. It was late, and a whole hour and a half of this jackass mugging and flitting across the stage was going to be too much. Isn't Steve Martin hosting again soon? I'll stay up for that one and leave Dane Cook to the kids.

01/27/06 - Pixar, the Red Sox and Goldfinger. What a week.

I just got an e-mail from a buddy out in California and that settles it. Everything in the world is right.

And I do mean everything.

The Walt Disney Company bought Pixar, creators of the Toy Story, Monsters Inc, Incredibles et al characters. For a minute there last year it really looked like they were going to walk and take their movie-making-magic elsewhere. But $7.4 billion later and they're all set. Phew.

Former Boston Red Sox General Manager and Golden Boy Theo Epstein left the organization last October after some kind of feud with the ownership. The team drifted for the last few months with a lack of leadership, losing centerfielder Johnny Damon to the dreaded New York Yankees. But now this week it's official, he's the General Manager again. Phew.

And that e-mail from California? My friend just saw Goldfinger, one of my favorite bands. But the scary bald guitar player, Charlie, left the band in autumn of 2001. They got this kid who looks about twelve to replace him, not sure of the kid's name, I always called him "Not Charlie". Anyway, apparently Charlie's back in the band. Don't know how, don't know when. But it was confirmed by a visit to that myspace thing - the band roster clearly lists Charlie.

So somehow this week the Cosmos was reset. All was made right and correct. And Josh rejoiced.

01/26/06 - The Emperor's New School?!?

Friday marks the beginning of the end.

Yes, The Emperor's New School starts tomorrow.

May the ancestors have mercy on our souls ...

01/24/06 - Iger's slam dunk.

God damn. The post-Eisner Disney just got a whole lot more interesting today, folks. With Disney buying Pixar lock-stock and Lasseter-top, Bob Iger has offically hit the ground running as new CEO and President. Eisner who?

In case you missed it, the Walt Disney Company is buying Pixar Animation Studios for $7.4 billion dollars. Hey, it beats negotiating a new distribution deal. Iger's a freaking genius to have pulled this off.

Now I'm not saying that former CEO Michael Eisner will be relegated as "that guy who came before Iger" but still, big ups to Iger. Way to step out of Eisner's 20 year shadow and save the fucking day, pal! It was wholly possible Pixar would have crushed Disney animation in the next few years, so way to stop that train from leaving the station.

Unfortunately odds are Pixar will make a flop movie eventually, and that might cause some people to think Iger made the wrong choice. It's not true. The pain of competing against Pixar would have stressed the already stressed Disney Animation group.

Speaking of, um, what happens to Walt Disney Feature Animation now?

Did you see this part?

So, um, there's still an Animation Group? And where's David Stainton in all of this? You know, the former President of Walt Disney Feature Animation? I hope they kicked him far to the curb. All of the smarmy creative executives, too.

Wow, I'm still shocked by this. I hope it doesn't disturb the slate of films from Disney, you know, "Meet the Robinsons" and "American Dog" and such. Okay, it can disturb "Rapunzel", that I don't mind. Oh, and that "Circle 7 Animation" that was doing Toy Story 3? Wouldn't want to be there today, my friends.

All-in-all I'm psyched. I think this will be good for animation and the Disney company. And certainly good it will spare us the potentially horrid "Toy Story 3".

01/24/06 - Disney to buy Pixar

4:29 pm
So it's official.


Who would have seen this six months ago when the two weren't even speaking?!


01/23/06 - Friends back, The West Wing gone ... holy crap it's the apocalypse!!!!

Crap. Not a good way to start your week - you sit down at your computer with your oatmeal and your green tea and your brand new scarf you bought at the Gap for three dollars on a snowy Monday morning, and then you read this:

And then you read this.


01/19/06 - For some reason this really cracks me up.

Maybe it's my complete hatred of the "who wore what" entertainment show glitz, or maybe just my complete hatred of Reese Witherspoon, but I find this story awesome. 'Cause you just know that Witherspoon is pissed and her people are making angry calls all over LA right now ...

01/18/06 - Go Frankie!

This is the kid who won them the world series the other year. He's great. Look at his 2005 salary and his 2006 salary ... that's crazy.

01/17/06 - 24!

God damn, that's a way to start a season!

More in a bit ...

01/15/06 - So that's what a 'Vingle' is?!

Wow, I feel underwhelmed.

A few months ago I mentioned here that Apple had trademarked the word Vingle. At the time speculation ran rampant as to what, exactly, a "Vingle" was or would be.

The Washington Post speculated that Apple may be readying "an uber-portal that combines the search functions of Google and the content scope of AOL's 'walled garden,' the television networks and the music labels."

Another site thought it would be wi-fi networked iPods allowing users to share content, the word a combination between "Video" and "Mingle". "A networked community of Apple customers 'mingling' at an Apple Retail Store or other Vingle-equipped location, sharing public-domain A/V content such as podcasts and vidcasts, and getting direct high-speed access to Apple's copy-protected content offerings."

There was talk about on-line chat rooms, bulletin boards, community forums, of cellphones and weird iPod cell PDA hybrid devices.

So then I go on the iTunes Music Store today and see this:

A Vingle is a video single?


01/15/06 - Why they keep messin' wit the money?! Shoooot.

Remember how last year the US Mint changed the nickel in that weird Westward Journey Nickel Series that I hated and complained about?

Well, they're changing it again.

And because nowadays everything has to have a special name, it's the Return to Monticello Nickel:

Note how Jefferson is forward-facing - up to now, the images of presidents have been in profile on the front of circulating coins.

I think it looks kind of dumb.

But not as bad as the oddly cropped Westward Journey coins of the last two years.

Anyway, look for these starting on Thursday. Yep, the mint will ship about a billion of the forward-facing nickels out.

Maybe if they put Jack Bauer on a nickel it'd get more attention ...

01/15/06 - "24 is on toniiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight!"

For some reason, Jack Bauer's return to TV makes me want to break into song.

Odd, eh?

Season 5 of 24 begins tonight with two hours, and then tomorrow there are two MORE hours. Are we a lucky people in this country or what?

The biggest problem that I have right now? Missing The West Wing which is also on at 8 pm. But who needs a D.V.R. when I have a V.C.R.?


01/14/06 - My boss quit yesterday. Huh.

So this is how totally messed-up my company and boss, well, former boss, is. I'm working away at my desk at 3:30 / 4 o'clock yesterday, a typical busy Friday get-everything-done rush, and my boss, one of the three directors of my department, has his coat on. I sit near the door in our large cubicle-less room, so he's walking in my direction when he says, "Josh, see you later."


And five minutes later he's gone.

In front of a room full of people he tells me he's leaving. No story whatsoever. No, "thanks for a year and a half of your life". No, "good luck with everything, man." I mean, I wasn't expecting a tearful goodbye, but still. He is such an odd and dysfunctional person. There were some days that he went without speaking to me. For ten hours. And you wonder why I used to think he hated me! You really have to go out of your way not to speak to someone for ten hours when you work in a room the size of a small diner. What other recourse is there? But then on two different occasions two other co-workers asked me if he hated them, too. So if three of your five underlings think you hate them? Well, you're a shitty supervisor.

Anyway, needless to say the office was in a little tizzy for the rest of the afternoon. Nobody really covered the essential details, like who exactly is covering the projects he's working on, if his e-mail should be forwarded to anyone, if HR is going to send out a company-wide e-mail informing the coworkers who are too busy to gossip around the watercooler that one of the directors is gone, or even who signs my timesheet now.


I really do wonder who signs my timesheet now.

Nope, instead there was the general plundering of the office that happens after somebody leaves. First his chair, then his flatscreen monitor, then his computer speakers. By six o'clock his desk was picked clean like the carcass of some poor zebra left rotting on the Serengeti. Desk drawers splayed open like a ribcage, pens and bits of paper scattered on the ground like entrails. I myself got a sweet blue polycarbonate bottle - an unused sample, not his real water bottle. Don't be gross.

As you can see, I'm not too broken up about this. We're getting a new director on Tuesday (yes, this year we actually get MLK Jr Day off - I'd make some crack about it's probably because our company hired its first African-American worker this year, but then ... wait, why don't I make that joke? Crap.) So work will probably be as chaotic as ever with the new guy. I kinda feel badly for this sap, not that he has to take the shoes of a schizo, but that he's coming into our dysfunctional world smack-dab in the middle of, well, everything. I feel like making cookies for him. Going in this weekend and cleaning. And not in a sucking-up way, just so he doesn't bolt at first chance.

Because, quite frankly, if he doesn't stay I'll only be more concerned about my timesheet ...

01/13/06 - Yesterday will forever be known as the "Day I Beat Yahoo Maps!"

Yesterday I was down in Boston, and we had to get from the Crate and Barrel on Boylston to Logan Airport. I looked it up on Yahoo Maps, and this is what they came up with:

1. Start at 777 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON - go 0.8 mi
2. Turn L on CHARLES ST[RT-28] - go 0.3 mi
3. Turn R on BEACON ST - go 0.4 mi
4. Turn L on BOWDOIN ST - go 0.2 mi
5. BOWDOIN ST becomes NEW CHARDON ST - go 0.3 mi
6. Turn R onto RT-1A NORTH toward LOGAN AIRPORT - go 1.6 mi
7. Continue on a local road toward LOGAN AIRPORT - go 0.2 mi
8. Follow the signs to your terminal

In theory probably the most direct route, but driving through the heart of Boston downtown at mid-day? Not bright.

So I came up with a plan. A ninja plan. One that two, two count them TWO Bostonians said wouldn't work.

Boylston to Essex (it's what Boyston turns into), Essex to Atlantic for two blocks, and the Summer bridge to the new Convention Center, then onto 90 and through the semi-new Ted Williams Tunnel.

And it worked. We left the parking spot on Newbury and were at Logan 15 minutes later.

I beat Yahoo Maps.



01/13/06 - Apple files 'Mobile Me' as US trademark

I love stuff like this:

01/12/06 - et tu, Millar?


01/11/06 - Anaheim Angels. They're the ANAHEIM Angels. End of story.

I think I complained about this before, but I don't have time to look when. Calling the baseball team based in Orange County, California the "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim" is the stupidest thing I've seen in this new Century so far. Anaheim is pretty damn far away from Los Angeles, and then if there's traffic on the 5 freeway, it's even farther away.

I remember when we visited California for the first time in 1988, I saw Angels Stadium when we visited Anaheim to go to Disneyland. I was surprised that the Angels played in Anaheim - back then they were the California Angels. That's pretty vague, it's like saying "The East Coast Orioles" or "Mid-west Twins".

And, quite honestly, Anaheim spent lots of money to update the stadium formerly known as Edison Field, as well as the surrounding streets. Show some respect, yo! It's such a slap in the face to call them anything but "The Anaheim Angels".

Also it's totally illegal.

01/10/06 - MacWorld news!!

Lookit this! Lookit this!

01/06/06 - Committee to get Mike Toole a "Bloggie"

So it's award season again. Yep, it's time to nomimate weblogs for the 6th Annual Bloggie Awards.

And I think Mike Toole needs one.

Now, I know what you're thinking, that I've been asked to pimp my friend's blog. Not true.

If it were true, I'd be asking you to nominate Mike Ochs's semi-sporadic weblog. Well, not that Ochs' asked me, really, it's just I don't know Mike Toole. Never met the man. In fact I've only seen one photo of him, actually. Yep, the one of him with William Hung. So it's not that. Now, true Toole grew up with Ochs, who's one of my buddies from Cali, but I don't think it's that wrong that I pimp Toole.

Also funny? Lisa. Also don't know her. Also a fan. Check her out.

Of course I wouldn't have a problem if you nominated me, either, but I really think Toole could win.

So think about it, will ya?

01/05/06 - Mainers given three extra days to file taxes, suckers!

Ha ha! Finally my moving to Maine is adventageous!

(Oh, and FYI this is not the new nationwide September 11th "Patriot Day". This is "Patriots Day" - no relation to the Foxboro football team - marking the beginning of the American Revolutionary War. You know, Lexington Concord, Paul Revere's ride, "The Redcoats are coming", The Boston Marathon, etc?)

01/04/06 - Futurama might return!

If Fox is going to kill "Arrested Development" this is really the least they could do ...

01/04/06 - my lunch today was a pop-tart.

And not even a Pop-Tart brand Pop-Tart. A Shaw's brand "toasted pastry".

Man, I hate busy days at work. The more that I do, the more I feel behind. And today I'm freaking beee-hind!

Sadly there's really no point to this post, no gag, no punchline. Too tired. Damn Marcy's for being closed this week.

Now there's a post for someday when I'm awake and fully nourished. Marcy's. The place is a freakin' sitcom waiting to happen.

Marcy's this little greasy spoon diner, on the corner across the street from where I work. Mostly a breakfast joint, it also has a damn good Chicken Cheesesteak sandwich. I'd write more, but I might gnaw off my own hand whilst typing. Let's just say it's like Cheers but not it's not a bar, and there are lots more art students. (MECA is right there.) Everyone knows your name and what your favorites are. It's awesome. I'd write more about it, but my phone is ringing again. Damn.

01/04/06 - Dubai ruler dies

01/02/06 - Arrested Development!

I hope you watched Arrested Development tonight! (unless you're on the West Coast, then "make sure to watch Arrested Development in 1 1/2 hours!!)

They had a great joke about HBO and Showtime, hopefully one of those networks will pick up the show. Hell, I'd get cable for it!

Go Showtime!

Go HBO!!

01/02/06 - Faneuil Hall's Baja Fresh!!!

I can't believe I forgot to tell you the bad news about our trip to Boston! Remember the Baja Fresh in Faneuil Hall I kept talking about and talking about?

It's closed!


It looks recent, as the space is still boarded up. I was totally bummed, as I was really looking forward to eating there. I mean, I haven't had Baja Fresh since I was in California in March!

Also the Burger King that James and I used to eat at across from Warren Towers at BU is gone. What kind of world are we living in that my two favorite fast food joints in Boston have closed in the past year?!?!

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