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Scaramouche! Scaramouche!

Evidently this family rocks out to Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” every morning on the way to school. Pretty darned awesome, but it’s the little tike in the car seat that really makes it.

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Wel-l-l-l-l-l-l! Dick Orkin’s ‘Chickenman’ on iTunes

A hundred years or so ago when I was attending RIT, my friend and college professor Steve Loar, introduced my classmates and I to one of his personal loves, an old radio show named Chickenman. Created by broadcast hall of fame inductee Dick Orkin in 1966 for Chicago’s WCFL, Chickenman was inspired by the popular TV series “Batman”. Originally scheduled to run just two weeks, the show’s popularity took flight and eventually became nationally syndicated, ensuring its success. Today Chickenman remains the longest running radio show in history and can be heard on XM Radio’s Channel 151 and American Forces Radio and Television Service (AFRTS).

Each episode checks in around 2 minutes long and tells the tale of Midland City’s Fantastic Feathered Fowl, an anti-hero who roams Midland City seeking criminals in his yellow crime-fighting car, the Chicken Coupe. He has a secret headquarters, the Chicken Cave, accessible through a trap door in his bedroom closet and when his duties as shoe store manager keeps him busy, his mother Mildred fills in as the “Maternal Marauder“.

Back when Steve introduced us to Chickenman in 1990, there were only a handful of episodes were released on vinyl, but every one of them managed to bring a smile to my face. I used to love listening to the White Winged Warrior hang out in the mayor’s office, generally annoying the almost-unflappable Miss Helfinger, performed to acerbic perfection by Jane Roberts.

I recently discovered that all 273 episodes of Chickenman are available via iTunes for download and I’ve been in poultry heaven ever since. If you love snarky, quick-paced humor, comics or just want to have a good laugh, wing your way over to iTunes and check out Dick Orkin’s Chickenman. Just remember evil doers, he’s everywhere! He’s everywhere!

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Hitler’s Waterloo

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at one of these “Hitler learns…” videos since the meme started last year. The historic passage of health care reform gave me just the excuse I needed to give it a shot. Hopefully you’ll have as much fun watching as I had editing. Enjoy!

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Star Trek: The Sexed Generation

Totally immature, totally tasteless and absolutely hilarious! When I hit the play button I was sure this Trek parody would end up being too long, but by the time it was over, I didn’t want it to end. Can’t imagine the effort it took to find & edit all these clips. The bits with Geordi & Wesley are my favorite, the 4:13 and 6:30 marks almost made me fall out of my chair. Engage and enjoy!

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Favorite Film Funnies

I’ve been seeing quite a few of these “Best Movie Lines” videos on YouTube and so I thought I would take a shot at making my own. It took some work to grab all of the clips, but the result was worth it. Editing this short ode to silver screen silliness was really fun. Next up, my favorite dramatic lines. Enjoy!

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Biff’s Question Song

To be fair to actor Tom Wilson, who played the infamous bully Biff from the Back to the Future films, I’d probably ask him all of these questions too. That’s why I’m so glad I discovered this gem of a clip where Tom puts all of the answers to song. The result is something that should somehow be worked into the next season of Big Bang Theory. Enjoy!

Hat tip to IO9 for this post

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Mental Health Break

At the risk of becoming a YouTube blog, I present you with four very awesome videos. Sometimes surfing the web can lead to random discoveries that turn out to be treasures in their own right. After finding these wonderful clips I just had to share so if you have time, be sure to check them all out, they’re really worth it.

Take On Me-A-Ha-Ukulele Cover (via Buzzfeed)

• Hitler Upset By Balloon Boy Hoax (via @arlo)

Pop-up Folding LEGO Temple Set

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Republicans Can’t Let Go

Liberal comedian and commentator Bill Maher isn’t always my cup of tea. He often diverges into shallow attacks of the right and when he does he hurts his credibility. But friday’s New Rules was right on the money. His New Rules segment summed up what I’ve been saying for weeks about what’s happened to the right since the election.

Conservatives have nothing left except the word “No.” They have no ideas of their own, have lost the reins of power in both houses of Congress, and the President and his policies continue to be very popular. As a result, the right is floundering in tea parties, talk of secession and made up facts. It’s like the entire right-wing of the country needs to go to group therapy to work through their Obama issues. Maher recognizes this and hits the nail on the head as only he can. Skip forward to the 2:21 mark for the noteworthy bit:

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Andy Richter Gets Tweaked for DVD

Back in January I wrote about the release of one of my all-time favorite TV shows on DVD. After almost 7 years, Andy Richter Controls the Universe was released on March 24th and thanks to Amazon.com I had my copy on the 25th.

All in all, CBS has done a pretty good job with the transfer of the show to DVD. The box set is formatted for 16:9 televisions and the decisions about where to crop the image for widescreen make it seem like the show was originally shot in HD, which it wasn’t evidently was (my bad). The picture is clear and selected episodes even come with audio commentary from Richter himself. If you’re a fan of the show, don’t miss these as well as the making-of features that are at the end of the third disk.

While it’s indeed awesome to finally have ARCTU on DVD, there are a few upsetting things that Andy fans will immediately notice. The first problem relates to the order of the episodes. While the DVD appears to list the show’s episodes in broadcast order, it would have made much more sense to list them in the order they were produced. It’s never made sense that the show’s 2nd episode (aptly entitled “Second Episode”) was aired 4th, especially since it immediately follows the events in the pilot. New viewers will inevitably be confused.

Perhaps worse are the numerous changes in the show’s soundtrack that have been made. It’s impossible to tell if these edits were done because CBS couldn’t or simply didn’t want to secure the rights for the original music, but either way they’re disappointing. Here are just four examples from two episodes of the changes that have been made.

Some of the changes I can deal with, but others are just bad. The “pseudo Sting” cover when Andy meets Wendy in his office is one of the worst, but the loss of the clip from The Sound of Music in “Grief Counselor” just plain makes me sad. I always got a chuckle out of Andy & Wendy kissing to the cooing sounds of Austria’s heartland and now it’s gone. I imagine this change was made because 20th Century Fox owns The Sound of Music and they didn’t feel like negotiating proper rights. Still, I’m a firm believer in the credo “If you’re going to do something, do it right”.

Overall this is a welcome, and long overdue release of one of the most underrated TV shows ever. If you’re a fan of Andy Richter, this set is definitely worth picking up. The image quality and formatting, as well as the DVD extras help make up for the sub-par treatment the soundtrack received. Check it out!

You’re Addicted to Twitter When…

… you brainstorm a whole list of updates ahead of time then plan your weekly schedule around when and where you’ll tweet them.

… you have to ask the Twitterverse their opinion before seeing a movie, eating out, or buying video games.

… get disappointed whenever you see a bird that isn’t some shade of blue.

… you start adding “tw” to words ie: tweeple, twidiot & twutorial. (by @kpiper)

… after witnessing a crime, instead of calling 911 you fire up Twitter.

… you’re excited that you have more followers than @jesuschrist (by @mantia)

… you think life would be better if you could just have 10 more characters.

… you convince your parents to start using Twitter because it’s so cool and then decide to block them because you realize how uncool it is that your parents are on Twitter.

… you think @cobracommander, @darthvader and @scobleizer are real people.

… you tweet from the bathroom.

… tweeting is more important to you than being Jennifer Aniston’s boyfriend.

… you consider moving so you can be at the top of your local Twitter Grader list.

… you wish people speaking in multi-sentence paragraphs would GET TO THE F*CKING POINT. (by @panache)

… you’re bummed when you don’t see the Fail Whale in days.

… you hit “Command-R” to refresh an AIM chat window (by @panache)

… you ask the Twitterverse for help with a blog post about Twitter.

Not So ‘Free’ Credit Reports

You know those really catchy commercials for FreeCreditReport.com that you like so much? Turns out the afore mentioned credit reports aren’t really free and the company that owns the site, Experian, is a douche bag. Although every American is entitled by law to at least one free copy of his/her credit report, the site charges users a monthly fee of $14.95 if they don’t cancel their initial request within 7 days. Major bummer pirate dudes!

Turns out that Experian has been sued for deceptive advertising practices every year since 2005 and each time the company has settled out of court for a handsome fee that keeps news headlines mum and TV goers forever whistling tunes about identity theft. I don’t know which is worse – yet another shameless corporation raping the consumer in times of economic hardship or the guilt I’ll feel whenever I start to sing the FreeCreditReport.com song for the bazillionth time.

Sweet Crusted Son of God!

To say that Andy Richter Controls the Universe is one of my favorite shows is an understatement. The short-lived series ran for only 19 episodes and, like so many others before it, was doomed by an early FOX cancellation. Although hailed by critics as one of the funniest shows of the 2002-2003 season, the quirky sitcom starring Andy Richter, Paget Brewster and James Patrick Stuart never made it out of the starting gate. Now, after almost seven years in distribution limbo, my favorite sitcom is finally coming to DVD.

I fell in love with ARCTU some time after it’s initial broadcast and scrounged up every single episode I could find on “the tubes”. Now TVShowsOnDVD.com reports that Andy Richter and his office pals will be coming to a DVD player near you on March 24th. No word yet on pricing or DVD extras, but that doesn’t matter, this show’s proof is in the pudding. Corey and I are genuine ARCTU fanatics and can quote more lines of dialog than we care to admit. There are so many awesome episodes it’s difficult to pick a favorite, but if you twisted my arm hard enough Richter’s reunion with Conan O’Brien in Crazy in Rio would be at the top of the list.

If you’ve never had the opportunity to check out Andy Richter Controls the Universe, pick up a copy on sale this March. With an unforgettable blend of snarky writing and impeccable casting, ARCTU is one purchase you won’t regret.

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Things I Learned at Macworld

Unlike most of the people I follow on Twitter, Macworld 2009 was my first expo in many years, and the only one where I’ve been one of the exhibitors. The week was fun, exciting and a lot of work. Now that I’m back home in Greensboro, I thought I’d impart some of the knowledge I gained during my experience. In no particular order, here are a few of the many things I took away from my trip to Macworld 2009:

• Expo food is over-priced – Ya know how they charge like $4.00 for a bag of popcorn at the movies? Macworld is like that but a x1000 worse. A pathetic bologna sandwich and a bottle of water came to $12.50.

• Floris Natural Benefits Soap – The Intercontinental San Francisco had some of this product line in our room and I couldn’t get enough of it. I must try and track down the Jabon hand soap for use at home!

• Craig has groupies – I mean I knew people loved Craig, but I didn’t realize they would actually wait in line to talk to him. Every day on the show floor was filled with people waiting to chat with Mr. Hockenberry, they just couldn’t get enough of him. All of that attention made me realize just how proud I am to be able to work with him.

• Mel’s Diner has the best lemonade – I’ve drank a lot of lemonade in my time, but the lemonade I enjoyed at Mel’s during the expo was, without a doubt, the best I’ve ever had. In my life. The perfect blend of sweet and tart that should not be missed.

• Chairs are precious – Our kiosk at the show only had one chair. I was told that to rent another for the week it would have cost $200. After spending almost 7 hours on your feet $200 didn’t seem that bad. When some bastard stole our one chair on Friday morning, we almost had a freak out. Luckily Travis was able to procure another in short order.

• Rickshaw computer bags – New product. CEO and owner gave me a demo of the bag and had me sold at like the 5th feature. If you are in the market for what could be the best computer bag you’ll ever own, check them out.

• Basil Thai on Folsom – Of all the wonderful places we ate while at Macworld, this little restaurant on Folsom Street was the best. From the appetizers to the wonderful desert and everything in between, it was to die for. Ged gives Basil Thai 5 stars!

• Meeting people – By far the best part about Macworld was simply meeting everyone. Tweeting with people is great, but Macworld reminded me that face to face contact can’t be beat. I met so many awesome people at the expo I can hardly keep track of them all. I especially enjoyed meeting the TUAW crew including Mike Rose, Christina Warren and Nik Fletcher. Other notable Mac heads I met during my week in San Fran included: Arlo Rose, Dan Moren, Rick Yaeger, Chris Pirillo, Rich Seigel, Michael Simmons, Scott McNulty and Arne Fismen.

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Carol of the ‘Logs

What happens when Christmas and capitalism get together? You get an idea from 2 weeks worth of Christmas Catalogs that were sent to my house from late November to early December. I didn’t request any of these things, they just showed up in our mailbox. Before you ask, yes, they were recycled. Merry Christmas everyone!

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It’s a Good Day!

Stumbled across this upbeat video on YouTube and just had to share. This is the kind of thing that my friends and I totally would have made back at RIT, so I feel like these guys are kindred spirits. Considering this mini-musical was obviously shot in a college dorm with zero budget, I think they did a pretty damned fine job. Sing it gentlemen!

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True Change

This seriously has to be the best video of the entire campaign season. This is so funny I nearly wet my pants. Like most comedy it’s funny because it’s true.

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Let’s Play Palin VP Bingo!

With the eagerly anticipated Vice Presidential debate between Alaska Govenor Sarah Palin and Senator Joe Biden, I thought now would be a good time for Sarah Palin Bingo. Although Sarah came on like gangbusters, lately her star has been falling. From the get-go she has lied about her record on the “bridge to nowhere”, Alaska’s energy contribution to the United States, her position on climate change and a whole host of other subjects. And although she’s conducted only a handful of interviews, her answers have made conservatives increasingly cringe.

Given all this and the fact that a growing number of right-wing strategists have said she should resign from McCain’s campaign, I thought it would be fun to keep track of the items sure to pop up during the debate on October 2nd. You can download and print out the PDF version of Palin VP Bingo so you can play along at home, or just check the Palin Bingo Page following the debate to see how we did.

NOTE: If for some strange reason the VP debate gets cancelled, it’s an instant Bingo. Now go download and have fun!

UPDATE: Well the debate is now one for the history books (thank goodness). I’m sorry to say we didn’t manage to call a Bingo! but it was fun none-the-less. If every space on the board had been filled with “maverick” then we all would have easily won. Sarah seemed to mention it ALOT in the last half of the event, especially in the closing minutes. And while she held her ground and didn’t provide the train wreck that I think so many on the left were hoping for, I think it’s pretty clear she doesn’t have the stuff to be one heart beat away from the Presidency. She didn’t answer questions, kept falling back on talking points, repeatedly mispronounced names and relied too heavily on “folksy” sayings.

Biden for his part seemed off-stride for the first half, but picked up steam in the end. He didn’t put his foot in his mouth as I expected he would (which was great) and gave more solid answers to a number of questions than Palin did. In the end, I don’t think this debate changed much, and after the right’s relief that Sarah didn’t screw up wears off, I think people will realize how little she actually said.

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Twitter Takes McCain to the Woodshed

Not long after John McCain announced that he was “suspending” his campaign so he could give Palin more time to get her shit together devote his full attention to the financial bailout crisis, the Twitterverse started having their say on the matter. About the same time McCain told Obama and David Letterman he was “racing” back to Washington, users all around the globe were calling him out left and right. I’ve gathered some of the more memorable tweets from today’s musings. Enjoy.

“I wonder if John McCain’s publicity is done by the same firm that handles Microsoft.” – danielpunkass

“Suspending X until the end of the Y crisis” is the new “In what respect, Charlie?” – toldorknown

“Maybe Obama should just take over tomorrow.” – Coudal

“Multi-tasking is a horrible ability for a president to have. Horrible.Things just happen one at a time in the White House. Nice & slow like.” – phillygirl

“I thought McCain already suspended his campaign. You know, back when he handed it over to Sarah Palin and Karl Rove?” – mat

“JOHN MCCAIN CAN’T DO TWO THINGS AT THE SAME TIME BECAUSE OF THE FUCKING VC, YOU INSENSITIVE ASSHOLES.” – Moltz

“McCain’t” – SeoulBrother

“This is surreal. McCain is not only off his rocker, he’s on the floor pressing the MedicAlert button.” – lefauxfrog

“I can understand why McCain wants to postpone – it’s not like his staff can prepare for a debate *and* lobby for this bailout all at once.” – jimray

“Did I call a time out after my stupid son blew up the Death Star? Hell no! I took the boys to Hoth and laid the smack down. Feh.” – DarthVader