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[ 2005 ]



[ 2004 ]

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[ 2003 ]

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Freeform Blog Association

Because I goaded her into it, Eva posted a list of her favourite 23 flicks. And she picked Jumanji ... Jumanji? Jumanji doesn't rock!

Pony has some sort of list of things she's not. Not a Jumanji fan, I'll bet.

Accordian Guy doesn't like the Dave Matthews Band. Which is funny, 'cause all I hear (er, read) is people saying (er, writing), "Dave Matthews Band this" and "Dave Matthews Band that" but when I download and listen to their music, all I can hear is this voice saying, "Yes, except the dave Matthews Band doesn't rock" ...

Hmmm, brain.

Heather is out of the mental hospital. In this post she apologizes for delaying her blog redesign because she's going to the mental hospital (Jett, what was your excuse?!!!) And this post was smuggled out of the mental hospital.

Puppy pics. Sarah also made a cake out of a block of tar!

Ok, that's it. Start the September.

11:56 PM , # ,


What is Your Porn Name?

Swiped from XT's ... let's hear it, what is your PORN NAME?

Mine: Chad Gravenhurst

6:00 PM , # ,



I'm sitting comfortably on the flight deck this week thanks to my new chair! Look at that thing, it's relaxo-riffic!

Of course, the only reason I have it is because my parents forced me -- at gunpoint -- to buy it. They were pretty disgusted by the chair (pictured right) I've been using since ... since ... since? I dunno, since some time in the 90s. At least my office isn't a closet (though dammit, dare to dream).

Warp factor: comfort!

12:40 PM , # ,


Alice vs. War

Alice's new experience will be posted later in the week, in the meantime, please enjoy Alice's Peace March Experience. While the war drums were beating in the USA last year, Alice went out on one of the coldest days and took a stand. Features my sister (who is heading back to school this week) and a special appearance by Enza 'Supermodel' Anderson.

But let's check in on the other war, the real war ... of course, I'm talking about the 21st Century American Civil War, now raging on into it's fourth year of insanity. You know that a country has gone completely bonkers when it's necessary to engage in these kind of arguments. [via Consolation Champs] Because it's obvious, really ... if some god or another was on someone's side, he/she/it would have given the preferred party some sort of Ark of the Covenant thingy and they would have shot lasers and melted the faces of their opponents already!

Finally, Busblog had a good rerun that puts blogging in perspective.

12:11 AM , # ,


Monday, August 30, 2004

While away ...

ALICE: Sometimes I worry that you might be a Communist.

BLAMB: A Communist?

ALICE: A subversive agent working for the cause of global totalitarian Stalinism.

BLAMB: Get out.

ALICE: I'm serious.

BLAMB: The only person ever to accuse me of such a thing was a variety store clerk in North York many years ago.

ALICE: How come?

BLAMB: I bought some stuff and he started to put it in a bag and I said, "That's okay, I don't need a bag." And he said, "Oh, you're one of those."

ALICE: One of what?

BLAMB: A global totalitarian Stalinist.

ALICE: See, he knew. Sixth sense. All of those variety store behind-the-counter types have it.

BLAMB: Well, they'll be the first up against the wall when the Revolution comes.

ALICE: You're driving me nuts with your propaganda. I have to get away from you.

BLAMB: Why don't you take the dogs for a canoe? You could have a canoe experience. Look at Zack, he's ready ...

ALICE: Good idea. And if we're not back in three hours, don't bother calling your comrades-in-arms for help. We'd prefer to be rescued by the legitimate authorities.

BLAMB: Fine.

Later this week: Alice's Canoe Experience. Action! Adventure! Canoe!

And here's an encore presentation of the very first of Alice's experience, Alice's Dufferin Mall Experience [Flash, 1600kb, no preloader ... just wait a minute for it to load]. Featuring Medlab, JenV from Circadian Shift and a special appearance by Matt the Coffee Guy on the day Shawn the Coffee Guy was fired.

1:29 PM , # ,


Ed Locke


9:41 AM , # ,


Sunday, August 29, 2004

All Time Sandwich

While I was away, I woke up one misty morning to the call of a loon and through the haze I saw a beacon of brightness. A shiny, golden sandwich and I heard a song being sung by the woodland faeries and elves ...

All I wanted was a sweet distraction with a slice or two,
Had no intention to do the things I did.
Funny how it always goes with food, when you don't look, you find -
But then I don't really mind, it's kind of fun.

We're an all time sandwich, we'll change all our spreads and more.
Doing so much more than falling in love.
On an all time sandwich, we'll take on the bananas and bread.
So hold on tight, let the bite begin.

I don't want to waste a waking moment, I just want to eat.
I'm in so strong and so deep, yum yum yummy yum yum.
In my time I've said these words before, but now I realize
My heart was telling me lies, for sandwich, they're true!

We're an all time sandwich, we'll eat 'til our stomach bloats.
Chewing on the bread, chewing the bun.
On an all time sandwich, washed down with a Coke
It's no joke, let the bite begin. We're an all time sandwich.

11:50 PM , # ,


I've been to ...

... but I've never been to me.

4:48 PM , # ,


Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Ms. Johnson

Here's the thing about grass: take a good look at a big, empty green lawn. Is it attractive? No, it's freaking boring at best and ugly at worst. Nobody actually likes grass most of the time, people value it for its iconic value. Grass says, "I've acheived the suburban dream!" But the rest of the time, it just lies there and looks like crap.

I'm going to be offline for the rest of the week, off to a place where there are no lawns. Please visit the fine blogs listed to the left, they are all full of life and joy and happiness! Except the ones that aren't. Which is most of them.

Joy is overrated anyways.

12:21 AM , # ,


Monday, August 23, 2004

Ed Locke


12:46 AM , # ,


Sunday, August 22, 2004

Race Distance

These feet were made for running, and that's just what they did.

They finished the 21 km half-marathon distance tonight for only the second time ever (plus a 16 km bike ride). Today's route took us from Logan Ave, along the waterfront and through the Beaches way out to deepest Scarbaria (the Scarborough Bluffs, actually) and back at a 6 min/km pace. And overall, it felt pretty good if your idea of "pretty good" involves a certain amount of pain.

Next week: 23 km blindfolded!

10:51 PM , # ,


Saturday, August 21, 2004

Coffee Guys Redux


Matt (pictured above with Patrick Swayze), one of the orginal Coffee Guys, is back in his most famous role at the Duff until the middle of September! If you're at the Dufferin Mall, drop by the Second Cup and say 'hi' ... Matt loves the visitors!

Matt appeared as himself in the Ed Locke's Grandpa Show (below, left) and inspired the robotic Coffee Guy character (below, right) in the Happy Creature strip.

Catch him while you can!

4:53 PM , # ,


Saturday Pain Map

Reviewing today's pain map, I noticed something interesting: a large portion of a hangover is caused by smoking (in my case, ingested second-hand) . Remove the smoke, as the recent bar ban has done, and you find that the amount of pain after a night out is reduced by a whopping 30-40%.

Do the math: that means you can drink 30-40% more!

2:23 PM , # ,


Friday, August 20, 2004

By Request

The Clarkster emailed and noted the cool sandwich banner on this blog. Enjoy every sandwich, indeed!

Clark also writes:

That image at the top is eerily like the sandwich(es) that makes an appearance in your flash movie with the Macarthur Park sound track. (BTW could you put a link up for it again I love that song now).

That was the flash flick that ki9cked off the thrid version of this blog. I forgot that it combined the glory of the sandwich with a pretty cool cover of MacArthur Park. Here it is. [1.4 Mb, no pre-loader] Stars Patrick Swayze the Sandwich (not the washed-up actor), my parents' dog Lexie (it's from before Zack was born) and features a guest appearance by Digifox.

6:58 PM , # ,


Trash Talkin'

Is anyone keeping track? Are we getting those big trash things or not? When I drew this one, they were going to be deployed in a limited test run. And now?

I seem to have lost the ability to care over the summer ...

10:21 AM , # ,


Thursday, August 19, 2004

More things

Storm likes a challenge! She's posted a 101 Things list, too. Can you feel the peer pressure building? Building like a giant wave of ... um .. er ... ahhh ... pressure of ... uh ... peers?

btw, mine's still going ...

103. I'm right-handed.

104. I'm a night person.

105. As a kid, when we played "Star Wars" on my street, I was always Darth Vader. When we played "Star Trek" I was Bones McCoy.

106. In the fourth grade I decided to worship Satan for a week. I went up to several kids in my class and asked, "Do you worship Jesus?" and when they said 'yes' I replied, "That's nice. I worship Satan."

11:02 PM , # ,


At the Movies

RobotJohnny started a movie blog called Cinema Toast. Great mix of movies to start, it should grow into a great resource. He also has a list of his 25 favourite movies:
  • Back to the Future
  • Dr. Strangelove
  • Brazil
  • Star Wars
  • The Wizard of Oz
  • The Hudsucker Proxy
  • Annie Hall
  • A Day at the Races
  • E.T.
  • The Apartment
  • Crumb
  • The Great Escape
  • The Ladykillers (1955)
  • Alien
  • Amélie
  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind
  • Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
  • Life of Brian
  • This is Spinal Tap
  • American Splendor
  • Young Frankenstein
  • Psycho
  • The Graduate
  • Rushmore
  • Office Space
More lists, eh? I feel compelled to do a favourite 25 movies list as well. I'VE BECOME ADDICTED TO CRACK LISTS! And before you start flaming me, this is a favourites list, not a best list. Ok, here we go:

Blade Runner
Buckaroo Banzai
Big Trouble in Little China
Big Lebowski
Blue Velvet
Dawn of the Dead (the original, not the crap remake)
Duck Soup
Empire Strikes Back
Evil Dead 2
Life of Brian
Once Upon a Time in America
Rear Window
Taxi Driver
Trois couleurs: rouge
Twelve Monkeys
Wrath of Khan

102. Likes to make lists.

9:15 PM , # ,


Happy Creature


10:25 AM , # ,


Wednesday, August 18, 2004

101 Things

Bah, this is so easy, you losers:

1. I was born in Oshawa, Ont. Canada's 'Motor City'.

2. I have one brother, two sisters and ten first cousins.

3. I'm an Aquarius. And a Monkey. And an INTP. And a WASP.

4. When I was little, we lived in Australia for a couple of years. My first memory of a rainbow is seeing one in a sandstorm in the Outback.

5. I grew up in Glencoe, Ont. (pop. 2 200)

6. I have friends from there who I still know after thirty years.

7. In kindergarten I got in trouble for colouring trees a combination of grey and brown. Even though I'd observed that trees were a mix of those colours in real life, it wasn't conceptually correct for my age level. Trees are brown. I know that now.

8. In grade 4 I used a paper cup to create a snout on a lion for an art project against the advice of my teacher. The lion won first prize at the fall fair anyways. I have problems with authority.

9. As kids, we used to enter the costume/bike decorating contest in the fall fair parade every year. I won once or twice.

10. I won the Art Award in grade 8, the Creative Writing & History awards in grade 13.

11. I went to a freaky art school for grade 11, 12 and 13.

12. Art school was the first place where I didn't feel like a complete freak.

13. I draw a comic strip about aliens called Happy Creature. I drew my first comics about aliens when I was in grade 3.

14. As I kid, I was terrified of Bigfoot.

15. Also as a kid, I enjoyed catching frogs, snakes and turtles.

16. I'm happy alone, in a canoe, in a swamp.

17. As a kid I made over 30 Super8 sci-fi movies with my friends between 1977 and 1987.

18. Then we switched to video and we have hours of that stuff.

19. There's no alien costume problem that a little papier mache can't fix.

20. I attended the film program at York U. in Downsview.

21. My first-year university tuition was paid by scholarship.

22. I am currently the art director at the world's second-largest documentary festival.

23. If you watch the low-budget Canadian flick 'Foreign Nights', you can see me at the end during the big dance number. I'm sitting in the audience wearing the red sweatshirt.

24. I was the editor of the Vandoo student newspaper at Vanier College.

25. One cartoon I drew for Excalibur, the main student newspaper, cause 20 000 issues of the paper to be recalled and printed with an apology.

26. That contributed to the editor being fired later in the year.

27. I love videogames and managed a small arcade at York.

28. I badgered the game supplier to get Joust, one of my favourite classic coin-ops.

29. I declined a bribe from one of the game suppliers - the only time anyone has ever attempted to bribe me.

30. My first computer was a Commodore64. We bought it at a K-Mart in the US while on a trip to Washington D.C. in 1984. It had a 1.6 Mhz processor and no hard drive. My current computer has a 3 Ghz processor, 2 Gb RAM and a 250 Gb harddrive and a 21-inch monitor.

31. I learned how to program in C64 BASIC.

32. Animating in Flash is easier.

33. I once played StarCraft for sixteen hours in a row. I don't put in those marathon game sessions anymore because I'm afraid of RSIs. But I allow myself a long evening of SimCity once in a while.

34. I've been a sci-fi junkie since I was a kid. My first sci-fi tv memory is seeing the opening credits of the Starlost when we lived in Australia.

35. My grandpa is a sci-fi junkie, so I must come by it honestly.

36. A kid I knew in Austalia grew up to work on the Matrix sequels.

37. I couldn't believe that Quark or Salvage 1 didn't get picked up as regular tv series.

38. Or Police Squad.

39. One year I ran for College Council and lost by two votes. Both myself and my girlfriend at the time voted for the woman who beat me.

40. I was a lifeguard/swimming instructor for six years.

41. I'm a happy drunk.

42. I eat banana sandwiches almost every day.

43. Sometimes I quit drinking coffee just so I can start again.

44. I draw two comic strips for a group of local newspapers.

45. I draw cartoons for the country's largest bank.

46. I was a shopping mall Santa Claus for four years, starting when I was 23.

47. Hallowe'en is my favourite holiday.

48. Fall is my favourite time of year.

49. I enjoy hosting parties: I have a late-fall party every year to kick off the holiday party season.

50. I organized the monthly beer night for my fitness class, too.

51. But if you met me, you wouldn't find me especially sociable.

52. I suffer from serious 'shyness' and have spent my whole life combating it.

53. I've had two long-term relationships.

54. Brunettes over blondes.

55. I like the girls who aren't interested in me and I'm not interested in the girls who are.

56. I'm very easy-going about most things, but pushed to make a decision, I become extremely stubborn and resolute.

57. Which is probably why I've been single for nearly five years.

58. People describe me as being a 'cold' person.

59. I just think of myself as being 'goofy'.

60. When I was a little kid, I told my mom that I didn't think that I could ever get married because there were just too many beautiful women in the world to choose from.

61. I'm not married.

62. I've vacationed in Cuba.

63. I love road trips.

64. I own a dog and a cat.

65. I go to the Dufferin Mall almost every day.

66. When I taught kids art, we played a long-term game of simcity live, as an art project. Then we did it again in the summer outdoors.

67. The mayor of Toronto at the time, visited our city. She had booze on her breath.

68. I once did an art project with kids where we performed 'alien autopsies'. It was more disgusting than you're probably imagining.

69. I've done papier mache professionally.

70. I worked at the GAP at First Canadian Place for nine months.

71. I chew on my finger nails. It's a bad habit.

72. I've never smoked cigarettes. I think the restaurant smoking ban was long overdue.

73. I think Wendy's has sucked the soul out of Tim Horton's.

74. I have been to Disney World three times. I am too young to really remember being to Disneyland.

75. I have held a very large boa constrictor over my shoulders in Times Square in NYC.

76. When I was a kid my dad took me to the outdoor observation deck at the World Trade Centre.

77. I know how to waterski and downhill ski.

78. I played hockey until the 5th grade, then played soccer until the 9th grade.

79. Team sports bore me. I don't give a rat's ass how the Leafs, Jays or Raptors are doing. Couldn't care less.

80. I saw Blade Runner during its orginal run in 1982. We got dad to take us and there were only five other people in the theatre.

81. A couple of year's ago, I saw Brazil at the Royal on New year's Day. Bruce MacDonald was also in the audience. I think Brazil is more relevant now than ever.

82. I didn't try Indian food for the first time until the late 90s. Now I crave curry all the time.

83. None of my friends like to go and have Chinese on Spadina as much as I do.

84. I have a small group of friends and a gazillion acquaintances.

85. I kinda like the colour green.

86. I like beer, but I don't love it.

87. Sugar-loaded desserts are my weakness.

88. My favourite ice-cream is cookie-dough.

89. My favourite doughnut is the sour cream glazed.

90. I own a bike but I don't own a car. I don't want a car.

91. I love streetcars. The subway is pretty cool, too. We didn't have a subway back on the farm.

92. I once took the train from Toronto to Vancouver. And back.

93. I haven't been on a jet since 1991.

94. I have a book that I started reading in 1982 that I haven't finished yet.

95. I have my great-grandfather's 60-yr-old Underwood.

96. I was supervisor of the village swimming pool for a summer.

97. I like broccoli.

98. I had several friends who died in high school, so I'm always aware that life can be short.

99. My big toes are a ridiculous shape.

100. I'm starting to notice an odd pattern in the years I find personally significant: 1977, 1982, 1985, 1988, 1992, 1995, 1997, 2002 ...

101. I found this list soooooo easy to do and only scratched the surface!

That wasn't so hard. I just dashed that off and with a little more work I could take it up to 200 ... or 500. It was a good little exercise, you should all try it. Gord managed 4 items, so that's the number to beat!

5:29 PM , # ,


Tuesday, August 17, 2004


Christie asked earlier today:

Out of curiosity what kind of sandwich is that?

I guess I should do one of those "100 Things About Me" lists, but until I do, here are a few things readers-just-joining-us should know about me, your host (long-time readers can skip this post and go read some Tony Pierce who remains, to this day, the best of the bloggers).

When I finished university in 1992 and was finally living as an 'adult', I realized that I could do whatever I wanted with my life. And the thing I wanted to do most was eat a peanut butter and banana sandwich every day.

I did that, mostly, and commemorated the 10th Sandwich Anniversary two years ago with this flash movie.

But then the blog changed everything. Readers emailed and warned about the dangers of peanut butter and suggested alternatives. First I tried Tahini, then almond butter and have stuck with it ever since.

MacArthur Park
Recently, the song 'We Built This City On Rock 'n Roll' has been topping all of the Worst Song Ever lists, which is more a testament of the listening audience's ignorance than an honest assessment of the song. We Built This City is a silly little song, but it's hardly "bad". You can hum along or sing it in the shower just fine.

MacArthur Park is something else.

MacArthur Park is a monster. It has savagely devoured both the talented and the foolish and very, very few have faced the song and emerged still standing, let alone victorious. Heck, try for yourself: here's the midi file and here are the lyrics. Sing it yourself, good luck.

The MacArthur Park slayer was Andy Williams, whose version of the song is pretty much the only one that won't give you stomach cramps. For the ultimate insanity, download Donna Summer's full 'MacArthur Park Suite'.

I like to run, not as much as or as far as KittyB (she runs the marathons), but I like it enough for me. Tonight I ran 19km. To put the distance in perspective, it's the distance you run if you start at the AGO, run over to Bay and down to the waterfront and out along the waterfront to Sunnyside Pavilion ... and back. Which is what we did.

And that's all you need to know about me! I also have a sweet tooth but never mention it on the blog because I don't want to tread on Sugarmama's turf. Oh, and I hate that freakin' Friends show, but it's done so yippy for me! In your fat, drugged, puke-covered face, Chandler!

8:47 PM , # ,


Happy Creature


2:01 PM , # ,


Morning Sandwich

This morning's sandwich reviews the artwork of an all-new Happy Creature strip.

9:48 AM , # ,


Monday, August 16, 2004


There are new music links posted at Circadian Shift. And I have one for her! Check out Schaffel Is Stronger than Pride [approx 67min, 92Mb, via Metafilter]

8:43 PM , # ,


The Ed Locke's Grandpa Show

Hey, this one is completely new! Never before posted or published!

10:15 AM , # ,


Sunday, August 15, 2004

Front Seat

Not everyone appreciates Zack as much as you, fine reader.

We were in Oshawa this afternoon and my sister insisted that Zack ride in the front seat to contain the hair contamination of the freshly vacuumed vehicle. So there we were, I was driving, Zack was shotgun and Merv was in the back seat.

At an intersection we stopped and waited for traffic and a bunch of scummy little Oshawa ten-year-olds rode up beside us on their bikes. One kid looked at me with a combination of shock and disgust and shouted:

You put your dog in the front seat and your girl in the back?

I shouted back, "That's my sister." And we drove off leaving them to ponder whether I meant Merv or the dog.

10:34 PM , # ,


Friday, August 13, 2004

Stuck on His Nose!


4:45 PM , # ,


Thursday, August 12, 2004

Sugar Shots

Whoa. What are you doing? You're checking those out?

Hey, wait, it's ok. Go ahead. It's just ... you always came across as such a nicey-nice, goody-two-shoes, I never thought you were into that sort of stuff. I've never even seen you eat a sandwich.

Hey, do you want to see some hard stuff? I've got some. Yeah, you do? Oh, you're gonna love it, look at this ... [audio]

The bananas are rubbing right up against those strawberries! Look at them go, and the strawberries are just lying there and taking it all in. If this is getting too much, just go and take a time out, eh? Sure, go on, we'll wait.


You're back. Better? This ain't kids' stuff, this is adult content. [audio]

Ok, look at the money shot:

Aw yeah! It's totally open! You can see right inside! It's pink!

What? You're going to the washroom, again? I warned you! [audio]

9:53 PM , # ,


Wednesday, August 11, 2004

You Can Tell Everybody, This is Your Show ...

Ice Queen asks:

If Your Life Were a Reality Show.....

1. What would it be called?

Sandwiches, Frogs & Dynamite

2. What would the theme song be?

MacArthur Park sung by Pat Boone

3. What cheesy b-list star would you want on when the ratings started to slip?

I would pay Crispin Glover and Corey Haim to come on, do drugs and fight one another.

4. Who would your corporate sponsor(s) be?

Del Monte

10:31 PM , # ,


Bad Date

A woman I know was just set up by some friends and went out on a blind date:

So the guy tells me he has an illegal tape, and I said to him, "Porn's not illegal, dude." And he said that it wasn't porn, it was a tape from Germany of necrophilia. Is that the sort of thing you bring up on a first date?

But there was more:

During the date, the guy said that he was very particular about how he treats a woman on a date and that he always pays for everything. If a woman even reaches for her wallet, he said he would stop her. But at the end of dinner, I reached for my wallet and he let me pay!

I said that maybe he was signaling disinterest.

But he asked me out on a second date!

9:51 PM , # ,


The Spinning Zone

Funny Quicktime of O'Reilly getting a debunking by the co-producer of a doc on FoxNews called, Outfoxed. [via Tony Pierce]

5:05 PM , # ,


Adventures in Cereal

You'll remember me when the west wind moves
Upon the chunks of granola
You'll forget the raisins in the soy milk
As we walk in the cereal bowl

So she took her love
For to gaze awhile
Upon the chunks of granola
In his arms she fell as her hair came down
In the cereal bowl

Will you stay with me, will you be my love
Among the chunks of granola
We'll forget the spoon as it meets our mouths
As we lie in the cereal bowl

See the west wind move like a lover so
Upon the chunks of granola
Feel her body rise when you kiss her mouth
In the cereal bowl

I never made promises lightly
And there have been some that I've broken
But I swear in the days still left
We'll walk in the cereal bowl

Many years have passed since those summer days
Among the chunks of granola
See the children run as the sun goes down
In the cereal bowl

12:03 AM , # ,


Tuesday, August 10, 2004


Darryl emails:

Check out the MPAA rating for Alien vs Predator:
"Rated PG-13 for violence, language, horror images, slime and gore."
Slime? We're now being cautioned for slime? Wonder where that puts Ghostbusters?

That's odd. I can think of some more appropriate warnings:











3:12 PM , # ,


Rumours of Shatner

More rumours of Shatner appearing on Enterprise as Kirk. [via Slashdot] I think it's a ruse! My guess is that they're signing the bastard up to do a spoken-word rendition of that idiotic theme song:

It's been ... a .. long road,
Getting .. from ... there to here.
It's beeeeeeeeeen ... a long time,
My time ... is finally near.

In other news, people are not taking the total destruction of the east coast seriously enough. Maybe it's because they know that it would result in the deaths of many Diet Coke-drinking Linkin Park fans. [both via Metafilter]

Speaking of music, Brenda had an epiphany.

Which is funny, because I just realized that the Enterprise theme song is about anal play.

1:23 AM , # ,


Monday, August 09, 2004


10:09 AM , # ,


Sunday, August 08, 2004

Meanwhile, on the Internet ...

The Red vs. Blue guys sum up the Internet in a Quicktime video. Take a break from masturbating and go watch it. [via Accordion Guy] Marc, in another post about that blog conference thingy, describes the Internet this way:

Look, this Interweb contraption is ideally about raunch 'n' roll. It's not about being nice--that's what friends are for, sorry if you have none. It's about immediacy and harsh judgements and seeing things from a POV that wouldn't have been accessible otherwise but is most enlightening when you discover it yourself. It can't be effectively harnessed in a boardroom, and it most certainly can't be taught. But, oh, how they will try and try.

Do you really want all this sizzle to get doused by the same fifth estate that continues to publish allegedly fascinating statistics like "according to Google, there are 684,000 fan pages devoted to Jennifer Love Hewitt" ...

On the Internet, you can get really neat things. Neat things like porn. But a bunch of attorneys general in the US aren't happy about that, as they mention over and over again in their letter to P2P operators:

One substantial and ever-growing use of P2P software is as a method of disseminating pornography ...

Did porn suddenly become illegal in the US? Is that one of the ways our societies are diverging?

Kathy, who hates Muslims (because they don't value human life as much as George Bush), linked to this article about the contrasting religious values in the US and Canada, but the poll cited is a little myopic. Mr. Polling Dude misses the boat by only comparing the US and Canada. Including other Western democracies would have show that, in the broader context, the Canadian stats are common for the West and that the US is out-of-step. The interesting question is not, "Why is Canada different from the US?", it's "Why is the US different from the other democracies?" Or maybe it's not that interesting. What do you want? It's the Internet!

There's more than porn on the 'Net; there are geeks, too! James disagreed with my assessment of Peter Davidson as Doctor Who (I'm sorry, but I just kept expecting him to shove his arm up a cow's arse) and declared his love for Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Keeping in mind what Marc wrote, all I can say is: JAMES BOW SUCKS! Even so, he has a good Doctor Who post and and in depth look at the seventh season Buffy reruns.

Andrew Spicer is concerned about the replacement street signs that are popping up all over town. The signs are cheap knock-offs of the original metal signs at 4x the size. My thought is this: if you're going to replace the signs, don't insult us with a discount simulation of the old sign. Start from scratch and create something new and good that's unique to the city.

But then, this is yet another symptom of amalgamation. We're getting gigantic, suburban-style signs for tiny, urban residential streets where they're not appropriate.

Finally, I was talking to my sister on the phone the other night and she had a little blog feedback, she said, "yeah, the cartoons are nice and all but there's something missing." There are, in fact, two things missing in this new version of the blog:

1) post requiring lots of thought and energy. Two years ago when I was doing lots of Flash stuff and visiting the Coffee Guys and hanging with Alice, I was working on a lucrative contract that required 10% of my creative resources and the blog was a good way to vent some of that energy. Now things have completely flipped, I'm working on projects that demand 90% brain energy. I'm using the remaining 10% to train to become a forklift operator.

2) personal stories, such as this one from this afternoon:

I was at Dog Hill with Zack this afternoon and there was a really attractive woman there and I was checking her out a bit and then, just before we left I took Zack over to the water hose to get a drink and the woman was there filling up one of the buckets for her dog. I started hosing Zack off and she struck up a conversation (no wedding ring, btw) and while we were chatting and I was hosing Zack, she starting scrubbing his fur so the water could soak in. So there I am, chatting with a really attractive woman and she's scrubbing my wet dog ... and that was enough to throw me off and drift out of the conversation. And then we left.

I'm dropping most of the personal stuff and deleted the archives because I'm thinking of maybe, possibly dating a little bit this fall and stories from other bloggers have convinced me that it's a good idea to have some firm boundaries drawn on the personal stuff. If you get involved with someone, you want them to feel comfortable that their life isn't going to become fodder for posts. Even though, in a perfect world, it would.

Also, I hate all of you and I want to punish you.

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Saturday, August 07, 2004

Trailer Park Boys

Something fun for the weekend! Janet is letting me post her pics from the season launch party of the Trailer Park Boys earlier this year. Above: Ricky loves the ladies.

Jenn & Jan get close to Bubbles ...

.. and share a laugh with Mr. Lahey.

But remember kids, never trust a man without a shirt!


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Friday, August 06, 2004

This is a web-only episode of the Happy Creature; it doesn't appear in print anywhere. In a perfect world, there would be a new strip every week ... but it's summer and getting motivated to do anything is a chore right now. But that's the goal, and it's good to have something to shoot for, right?

11:58 AM , # ,


I, Crapbot

While we're on the topic of robots and RobotJohnnies and sci-fi and stuff, I went and saw the I, Robot movie with the Fresh Prince of Bel Air in it. On a scale of the evolutionary chain with an amoeba being utter garbage and an elephant being really good, I, Robot is ....


It's one of those movies that's sort of entertaining when you're in the theatre, but afterwards, when you really think about it your reaction tends to be, "Hey, that was completely idiotic!"


Christian Toto from the Washington Times had this to say about the flick:

All a great summer movie needs is a little action, some big-time special effects and a story that doesn't insult our popcorn-addled brains. Oh, and it helps if you've got Will Smith as your hero."I, Robot" has all of the above, in helpings rarely seen during the sweltering summer months.

Christian Toto is an moron. On a scale of home appliances, with a coffee maker being really dumb and a refridgerator being really smart, I, Robot is one of those hand-mixer things.

So there's Wil Smith, right? And he lives in the future, right? And there are robots everywhere, right? And we're expected to believe that a) human society has not been fundamentally altered by having a gazillion robot slaves, and 2) because a robot made a bad decision and saved his life, Wil Smith's character hates all robots. He's an anti-robot bigot.

Not only is that a hard sell, the entire plot hinges on Smith being a robot bigot. And it just doesn't sell because it's Wil Smith! The Fresh Prince! The Man in Black! How could he hate anybody, let alone a dopey robot?

Top five potential robot-haters:

1. Nick Nolte
2. William Hurt
3. Susan Sarandon
4. Farah Fawcett (she's been hurt so much before)
5. Harrison Ford

Top five potential robot lovers:

1. Wil Smith
2. Billy Mumy
3. John DiMaggio
4. Anthony Daniels
5. Kurt Russel


Anyhow, the plot limps along until just after the big car chase when the Smith character, after being attacked by a gazillion robots, is able to smash his fist through sheet metal or concrete or some really sturdy substance. At that point, I woke up and thought, holy crap! He's a robot! I didn't see that coming, where are they going to go with this?

But he's not a robot, he just has a Steve Austin arm and the opportunity for the plot to take an interesting turn dies on the table.

The movie has a beginning, middle and an end that's not very good. If you want to be entertained, don't go see I, Robot. Instead, read this review of the movie written by an illiterate!

That's entertainment!

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Thursday, August 05, 2004

Time for a Smear

The LCBO's Time for a Beer ad campaign swiped a font from RobotJohnny without acknowledging his contribution or complying with his generous commercial use conditions:

My fonts are “toyware” which means they are free for non-commercial use. For commercial use, payment must be made in the form of either a toy or (to make it easier) an item from my Amazon wishlist.

Items from his Amazon wishlist are mostly around the outrageous price of $15. And the font gets used everywhere in the campaign: the website, on boxes, a vending machine and a gift bucket. But while corporate sponsors suck as Maytag, Weber and Skybox get prominent logo placement, RobotJohnny, the guy who provided much of the character of the campaign with his font, gets the shaft.

I recently needed a comic font for a small, commercial project. It's an internal communication, so nobody in the real world would see it but I still went and paid for a font at Blambot fonts (well, ultimately the client pays for it). To pilfer a font for a large-scale commerical, public campaign ... that takes some gall.

btw, LCBO may not be concerned about others' property, but they're plenty concerned about their own:

The materials (the "Materials") contained in the Website including, without limitation, information, videos, software, photos, graphics and sound are owned by, and protected by copyrights and other proprietary rights in favour of, LCBO and third parties. All rights reserved. You shall not modify, publish, transmit, participate in the transfer or sale, create derivative works, or in any way exploit or use the Materials, in whole or in part without the prior written consent of LCBO. You may print, in hard copy, portions of the Website only for the purpose of placing an order with LCBO.

3:30 PM , # ,


Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Sci-fi Sandwich

Ha ha! That's right, Locutus, resistance is futile! There's no way you can resist that delicious almond butter and banana sandwich, is there?

It's a cool and cloudy day and that reminds us of one thing: fall will be here sooner than you think and that means a new tv season! And it's slim pickins for any geeks who enjoy an half-decent sci-fi series (at least there's Smallville).

And the Smallville Season 4 rumourville sounds promising. Lois Lane is supposed to appear in 13 episodes and Michael Ironside is cast as her father. Even though I hated that early 90s Lois & Clark series, Teri Hatcher remains the Lois Lane standard that I'll be judging the Smallville Lois against. Funny, Dean Cain is my least favourite Clark Kent of all time, worse than George Lazenby. Here's my worst Supermans ever list:

1. Dean Cain
2. Pete Best
3. George Lazenby
4. Ahmed Best
5. Kirk Alyn

BBC is resurrecting Doctor Who and this time they've cast a Doctor who looks contemporary but still suitable for the role after the disaster that was Paul McGann and the three guys before him. Ok, here's my worst Doctor Who ever actor list:

1. Peter Davidson
2. William B. Davis
3. Paul Davis
4. Paul McGann
5. Roger Daltry

After plodding along for a dwindling number of viewers for three seasons, Enterprise, in an act of utter desperation, pulled out all the stops with its cliffhanger episode by introducing the ultimate evil: alternate universe space Nazis. If that can't breathe some life into the series, nothing can.

And it's kind of sad because the raw materials are there. The cast is good (except for poor Ensign "Wesley" Mayweather) and the production design is great ... the problems with the show can be summed up in a list of five items:

1. Sucky, sucky music
2. Sucky, sucky stories
3. Sucky, sucky Star Trek cliches
4. Sucky, sucky token black guy character
5. It's just dull

Do you realize that the null-music on Enterprise is the same droning crap that we've been listening to on each Star Trek series for over fifteen years? And it was bad when they "perfected" it in the final seasons of TNG!

2 & 3 sort of fit together. The stories are mostly the same old stories we sat through during the later seasons of TNG when it stopped being really good, and crappy DS9 and unwatchable Voyager. And the cliches Enterprise is guilty of were already cliches by the end of TNG: two people in positions of authority have a conflict, someone with low self-esteem takes on a challenge and their self-esteem is boosted ... etc, etc, who cares ... ?

The other thing that's become cliched is the acting. Every freaking sentence has to be infused with this dramatic tone and it's leaden and tedious. Are they writing each bloody episode in iamabic pentameter? TOS wasn't like that. Sure, Shatner used to act but at the end of many episodes, there were these light moments when Kirk would make a racist "Spock, it's just .. hu ... man ..." or sexist "Yeoman, it's just .. wo ... man ..." comment and everyone would chuckle and the episode would end leaving you with the sense that although these people face some pretty intense situations, they actually enjoy life. Picard, too. You always got the sense that he thought that being Captain of a starship was pretty damn cool.

Archer doesn't seem to enjoy anything. He's always worrying about his dad's "legacy" or his dog's poop cycle or any number of real or imaginary slights. Half the time he seems like he's just about ready to break down and start crying. Captain Sensitve-Loser-Guy would have been a better name for him.

Then there's ensign Mayweather ... I guess you can't really call him the token black guy because they really did make an effort to create a multi-cultural cast. But, he was cast and then completely ignored for three seasons. The character could be salvaged and here's how: make him gay. I mean, the character is already kind of gay, so why not pull him out of the closet?

Finally, the dull-factor. These idiots are out in space for the first time, it should be a dramatic adventure, right? But there's not much drama pumped into the presentation and much of the 'adventure' seems routine. Verisimilatude isn't just created by set detail, how the characters react to things makes an impression as well and these characters always act as though they're on the Enterprise-E.

Space Nazis. It better work.

All-time worst Star Trek Villans:

1. The Breen
2. The Kazons
3. The Dominion (and related villans, The IGA)
4. Tam Elbrun (not really a villan, just annoying)
5. Dean Cain

And then there's Battlestar Galactica in January. I liked the mini-series, so my fingers are crossed that this will be a worthy sci-fi infusion.

Other tv:

Are you as excited as I am about the second season of This is Wonderland? Here's what the CBC Season Preview has to say about it:

More original mind-bending stories. More angst-ridden comedy. More emotionally complex mayhem. More uniquely obsessive characters. More unusual locations. More unexpected conflict. More of everything you loved the first time – and a few surprises too.

Wait a minute, they're trying to trick me! I didn't love it the first time! I only watched it because it was on after Monday Report and before the Newsroom! The show is sort of like Enterprise in that it has good parts (good cast, setting, some interesting stories) but in its first season it wasn't really able to pull everything together into what one would call "a show".

The main problem was, and I've said this before, that too much time was spent on court cases of little interest and hardly any time was spent with the regular ensemble of characters, who seem like they would be really interesting if we could get them to sit down and hang out for more than thrity seconds. A couple of the characters you seen in the opening credits only appear briefly in a few episodes and had less time on screen than many of the less interesting guest stars.

So who knows, maybe they can turn that sucker around and make a show out of it.

And that's your tv/sandwich update-a-thon!


3:11 PM , # ,


Ms Johnson


10:18 AM , # ,


Tuesday, August 03, 2004

On Them There Blogs ...

Sugarmama went to New York and got good pics. Accordion Guy went to that public journalism thingy and got good notes. [Marc has the real story] Brenda went to Couplehoodville and got strep throat. Crazybikerchick went 470km and got nerve damage.

That is all.

11:47 PM , # ,


That Wacky Old-Time Religion!

Storm has the best, last word on the whole "Pope watched the movie, Ms. 45, one too many times" thing. Of course, if you want to understand the religious conservatives, it's best to hunker down and actually talk to them, one-on-one [via AllThingsCrispy].

I grew up in Smalltown, so there were always religious fundamentalists around, usually associated with the local Pentacostal Church. The kids who went to that church were the source of a wealth of novelty items, such as religious comic books about the Rapture, mix tapes that analyzed the hidden, backwards messages in rock music and fun games such as 'Stigmata': take your finger and scratch the middle of each of your palms one thousand times. Guess what happens?

Even as a kid, I was impressed by some of the creative cross-pollination the mix of fundamentalist religion and pop culture produced. Since much of mainstream culture was off-limits, it was appropriated in bizarre ways. The religious comics were more science fiction than religious tract (the exceptions being the occasional Chick tract that popped up from time to time), filling the craving for sci-fi since, as one guy told me, he wasn't supposed to see the Star Wars movies because they "weren't real".

Christian heavy metal bands were probably the weirdest product of the period, but for me the literal-thinking was best represented by an artist who visited our grade 6 art class. He specialized in painting religious scenes with all of the 'holier' characters represented as body builders. His reasoning? People who were closer to God would be more 'pure' and therefore, would have great, big muscles. He had a lot of paintings of Jesus with these gigantic, bulging pecs and quads. If that guy had directed the Mel Gibson Jesus movie, he would have cast Arnold as Christ. Even in grade 6 the whole thing seemed nuts to me.

Speaking of the "good ol' days":

Jen has a post about Detroit Techno over at Circadian Shift. We received the Detroit radio signals in Smalltown and I used to listen to the Electrifying Mojo from time to time. I remember once night he played a loop from B-52's 53 Miles West of Venus and spoke over it, saying things like, "If you are poor, you are somebody. If you are rich, you are somebody. If you are married, you are somebody ..." for an hour or more. He was always doing crazy stuff like that and he'd often ramble about whatever for long periods of time while playing really dramatic symphonic music in the background. They used to broadcast competitions between local high school djs and I think I even have an old mix tape of some of that hanging around here, somewhere.

The independent radio and tv stations in Detroit had a lot of creative energy in the 80s, even to this day Toronto's local media is dull in comparison. And I don't mean a little dull, I mean a lotta dull!

1:23 PM , # ,


Monday, August 02, 2004

The Ed Locke's Grandpa Show


9:29 PM , # ,


The City

An extensive collection of descriptions and photos of Toronto's neighbourhoods [via Metafilter]. I'm located here.

Speaking of the city ... secret swing, secret swing, everyone has been going on about that secret swing ... but Eva found something better: the city's shortest 'Discovery Walk'.

5:20 PM , # ,


Ms Johnson

I've thrown a bunch of first-year comics into the Ms. Johnson archive to get started. Eventually, there will be three years of strips ...

11:53 AM , # ,


Ms Johnson

The Ms. Johnson comic page exists! Since the strips are always posted in glorious black and white, I made a page header in the style of Hollywood's golden age. Robot Johnny provided a good link to an archive of movie title stills that provided some inspiration. The comical trinity is now complete!

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Sunday, August 01, 2004

Fudged Report

Tom Tomorrow is still waiting for an explanation from the Drudge Report. Drudge swiped a photo off of his website, altered it and failed to attribute it to the This Modern World website (I first read about the situation on James Bow's blog). As dodgy as it was to repost the photo without permission, it's not half as strange as the Photoshop alterations.

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