jmc_bks: (Imperfect 2 by LJ Ase)
I'm alone for the first time in 10 days.  It's weird but nice.  I appreciate the great care I received from everyone, especially my mother, but feel a little relieved to be on my own.  Also, I'm glad Mom is going home to rest -- I feel like my illness was harder on her than me in many ways.

The review for K.A. Mitchell's new book, Bad Boyfriend, is in progress and will be posted over at WordPress later today has been posted at WordPress.  Once that's done, I'll settle down and address holiday cards -- I'd like to write personal notes rather than just sign the cards, but we'll see.  

Had to bail on the fic exchange because I knew it wouldn't be finished in time for the exchange due to health and timing issues, but I'm thinking that might be something to work on this afternoon, too, as a belated gift to the recipient (someone else is pinch hitting for the exchange) or to the comm generally.

I've been earwormed by Panic! once again, courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] asimplechord's concert call from the secret acoustic show in Austin.

There's an email in my inbox about the Green Bay Packers' stock offering.  Back when I was a dead-broke student, they did their first offering in decades in order to raise money to improve Lambeau Field.  I desperately wanted to buy a share but at the time $200 was beyond me.  I could afford it now, but am feeling as if 1) any money spent on frivolous things right now should be for others rather than myself, and 2) since I just paid $400 to get my car fixed and am expecting to pay up to the deductible for my recent hospital stays, fiscal prudence is in order.  D:

There's also a Groupon in my inbox for The Economist -- $1 per issue (51 for the year), which is a huge bargain and a magazine that I find useful and instructive.  But I cancelled my subscription last year because I couldn't read them fast enough. Decisions. Hmmm.

jmc_bks: (flaming june)
I missed SBD yesterday -- my apologies -- due to work getting in the way of my life.  And then after work, I went to the 9:30 Club to see Foxy Shazam, Patrick Stump and Panic at the Disco with my sister and some of her friends.  The "don't be creepy" speech from Zach (tour manager) was both entertaining and disturbing -- people really need to be told not to grope during the photo op?  Someone brought as a gift a pumpkin that had been carved with the band's logo, which made it up on stage.  The people watching was stellar, in part because there was a costume contest.  I especially liked the Venus Flytrap costume :)

Foxy Shazam, I don't really know what to think of them.  I liked their music but the lyrics were questionable (go listen to a clip of "I Like It" at iTunes.)  The lead singer was exhausting to watch, like an ADHD kid off his meds and on caffeine.  The trumpet player (in zebra striped lyric pants and a top hat) was bendy like Gumby and all over the place.

Patrick Stump -- okay, he's an adorkable kid and I just want to pat him on the head.  He came out in the red tuxedo and a headband with blinking red horns.  Opening medley:  Ghostbusters, Spotlight, Porcelain.  Loved his cover of In the Air Tonight, along with Run Dry and This City.  But apparently he had never seen how baking soda reacts to water?  Because he used it to paint his face white and then had to frantically rub at his face with a towel when he started to sweat and the liquid and powder reacted (ouch).  (I had no idea that it was a risk for Panic to take him on tour, but apparently not everyone is thrilled with his musical direction post-Fall Out Boy.)

Panic.  Okay, I'm not a huge fan although I do like their music.  We went to the meet & greet.  And they were all in costume.  Ian = girl in Kick Ass, including pink wig :)  Dallon as the lead singer of Foxy Shazam.  Spenser as Ron Burgundy (really not too different from regular gear?).  And Brendon as Jesus.  The Jesus bit was a theme for the evening from him.  Went up to the balcony rather than stake out a spot at the barricade with H's friends.  Good view, less crushed.  

In summary:  good times.  But I feel old:  didn't get home until 1am, and am dragging today.  When I was 21, 1am on Thursday night had no effect on me on Friday.
jmc_bks: (GK_Bradabs)
I posted over at WordPress for SBD -- read and really enjoyed the PsyCop mystery/suspense or urban fantasy series.

Also, this time next week I'll be with The Biochemist and the Texas Fangirl Contingent (that name may not be entirely accurate), who are on the Tour of Flail and Glee, shenanigating around Texas and up and down the East Coast for the PStump and Panic! tour.

Sidebar:  I like PStump's Soul Punk album, especially "This City".  But I like the EP/original version of "Spotlight (Oh, Nostalgia)" better than the Soul Punk remix.

Thirdly, I've got a comment fic brewing for the most recent Rocktober post at [livejournal.com profile] we_pimpin.  We'll see if it gets posted tonight or tomorrow...

Uh, okay?

Aug. 15th, 2011 09:43 pm
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
+  Posted over at WordPress for SBD.

+  Bought two Kindle books by Georgette Heyer.  Probably wouldn't have but for the anniversary sale ($1.99 each!).  Otherwise, I can respect her place in the development of the modern genre romance, but have not been impressed by the books I've read.  Regency trads aren't my thing for the most part, Carla Kelly being the notable exception.  And she seems to have left the subgenre behind.

-  Why is Cobra Starship touring with Bieber?  Granted, it's the South American leg of his tour, but still, I didn't realize they had a significant overlap of fans; I though CS's average fan was several years older.  Eh, whatever sells tickets, I guess.

-  Dear IT peeps: saying that I'm the SysAdmin for that system?  Fine.  But as a practical matter, I am only acting/holding the position until a new higher up is hired.  I have NO IDEA how to do what you want.  When I asked the retired person who used to do it, she said that task was explicitly given to IT.  I'm sorry the person responsible is on vacation in Montana during your critical testing period, but that doesn't make me any more able to do what you want.  No love, me.

~  Looking at the line up of authors who'll be attending the National Book Festival next month, there are very few (3 or 4) that I might be willing to wait in long lines to meet or have autograph books.  And genre fiction is extremely poorly represented, as usual.

~  The BIA essentially said last week that aliens in custody don't have to get the immigration equivalent of Miranda.  I...am not sure what I think about this.  And while I'm probably conflating a lot of things, I'm curious about how this works in conjunction with Padilla.


jmc_bks: (Default)
 Originally posted here.

+ Went to the Outer Banks for the first time, just for a few days, Thursday – Saturday. Some friends from work who go annually invited me to stay with them in Nags Head. Took the scenic route (301 to 17) rather than 95/64, which was what Google Maps kept trying to make me drive. The scenic route probably added a half hour to the trip, but the landscape was gorgeous and the road was empty for the most part. The house had four bedrooms, plenty of space. Enjoyed the beach in the morning, followed by a walk to Sonic for Cherry-Limeade, then lunch at the house and playing in the pool all the afternoon. On Friday, the wind was up and the surf was high; right in front of us, a guy was knocked over and out by the waves. It took five people to drag him to shore, and he didn’t regain consciousness before the EMTs arrived and strapped him to a back board and took off for the hospital. It didn’t look like he was breathing at first. I hope he’s okay. Other than that, I enjoyed the trip and the company, and would absolutely go back.

+ Went to the Legg Mason Tennis Classic today to see the singles and doubles final. The doubles team I was rooting for (Michael Llodra and Nenad Zimonjic) came back to force a tie break in the second set and then won the match in a super tie break \o/. On the singles front, I didn’t really care who won. Radek Stepanek is kind of a spoiler, I think — he hangs around and surprises people. And Gael Monfils (#1 seed) is kind of flaky — he’s got loads of talent but you never know who’ll show up, the serious player or the circus clown who’s more interested in trick shots and acrobatics than the game. I bailed during the (first?) rain delay, when Stepanek was up 4-2; I’d been out in the sun and heat for 4+ hours and was feeling dizzy and disoriented despite drinking 2 liters of water during that period, needed shade and AC.

+ Have not read much in the last week. Just “Prove It” by Chris Owen, which I’ll probably blog about tomorrow for SBD.

+ Do I need to see Patrick Stump next week? I want to, but is it necessary?

+ I’ve gotten my assignment for the fandom fic exchange I signed up for. The prompt belongs to the person whose fan fiction sets the bar for my OTP, so I’m feeling somewhat intimidated.

jmc_bks: (Nadal at French 2010)
+  The grass at Wimbledon in the opening rounds is gorgeous, no brown patches yet.  I can't remember, did I ever post any of the photos I took when I visited last year?  Ironically, the tour stopped on Court 18 so we could see a court at eye level and touch the grass (no pulling) -- this was, of course, four months before the historic Isner/Mahut match.  (Which was a long match, but wouldn't necessarily be on my list of "great" matches.)  Fernando  managed to dig himself out of a hole and win in five against Radek Stepanek.  Sam Stosur seemed to have left her serve and her forehand and her entire game in Australia, and went out early.  Daveeeed won in straight sets.  \o/  
 
+  If you have a subscription to the NY Times, check out Christopher Clarey's pieces on the differences between the racquets of the top four players.  And his other writing, too, of course.  And Tignor over at tennis.com; I like his writing enough that I've got his MacEnroe/Borg book, High Strung, TBR despite the fact that I can't stand MacEnroe and have to put him on mute whenever he's commenting (read: bloviating) for a match.

+ \o/ for the IASPR conference coming up.  Must print the schedule and double check reservations and also make sure to sign up for the group dinner on Monday.

+  Ordered a retirement gift for the retiring boss.  Who is also my friend and whom I'll continue to see outside work.  But still.

+  B&N posted a net loss last quarter, despite an increase in sales.  I'll be interested in reading their SEC filings.

+  I read Josh Lanyon's Come Unto These Yellow Sands, which I really enjoyed.  The recovering addict hero may be my favorite of his narrators to date, which is a little surprising to me for a variety of reasons, mostly related to real-life issues that don't need to be rehashed here.  I pre-ordered it and then forgot about it, and it appeared on my Kindle when I turned it on the other day.  I've been sort of "off" Lanyon lately, because the last couple books I tried, historicals, didn't really work for me.  His contemporaries work much better for me.  It's a little odd, since it's the same voice and writing style.  Maybe the problem is my approach to reading the historicals and my general lack of interest in noire?  The historicals do seem noire-ish or noire-lite to me.  Or maybe I'm confusing eras and styles.

+  Attempted to read an Ellora's Cave book.  It came well-recommended by a GLBT review website that I need to just delete from my Google Reader.  But it was set in New Zealand and had professional rugby players as protagonists, which was what interested me.  Still, the price was ridiculous, the length extremely short and the plot and writing elementary.  Waste of a good potential story line.  Eh, just a reminder to myself to not attempt EC books and to completely ignore the "reviews" and use that website as a a publishing/release info resource only.
 
+  I forgot to mention:  I got a concert call last week!  Panic! playing "Carry On My Wayward Son".  It was awesome!
jmc_bks: (meninas)
Coming soon:  a review of Hello Kitty Must Die by Angela S.Gina Choi.  In short: it was awesome.  Longer version later.

Check out Steve Tignor's love letter to Madrid.  Between that and FortyDeuce's tweets, I've been wishing I was in Madrid this week, enjoying the tennis and Retiro Park and stopping for a tart or sweet from La Mallorquina in the Puerta del Sol.

The Dairy Queen commercial for ice cream cakes for Mother's Day seriously squicks me -- it's the bubbles filled with kittens.  They remind me of a scene in Bujold's Cetaganda, in which that idiot Ivan plucks fruit from a kitten tree, only to realize that since it wasn't ripe, he'd essentially killed a fetal kitten.  Ick ick ick.  There's a lot of subtext and ethical undercurrents to the Cetagandan genetic manipulation and scientific experiments, but that image of a dead kitten made me ill when I first read it.  I have to skip that scene when I re-read the book.

Have I mentioned how much I like Panic's The Ballad of Mona Lisa?  Also, I have a ticket (via The Biochemist) for their show as part of the DC101 cook-off/festival at RFK in a couple of weeks...but it turns out I have a graduation party at the same time :(
jmc_bks: (seagull)
So...how was your Easter/Pascal weekend?

Mine was *fine*. I have no religion, so I didn't realize when I booked tickets to New York that it was a holiday weekend. Eh.

Good theater:

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. A good adaptation of the original film.

The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with the a Key to the Scriptures. Uh, this play really enjoyed showing how smart its characters were. It could use some editing IMO...although it's not as if I'm a learned theater critic, so what do I know? The story is centered around a Clinton family who gather to discuss their father's future: he wants to commit suicide, and has attempted it once before. All families are screwed up, and this one seems like a hot mess. Infidelity, money problems, mommy and daddy issues, etc. The cast is excellent and they give some amazing performances. The father was a little too much for me, and the introspection and angst could've been cut some, but still pretty good.

Avenue Q. Apparently we're all a little bit racist. And the Internet is for porn.

American Idiot. The final show. I think I've said before that I like Van Hughes' Johnny better than John Gallagher Jr's. The new Will's voice is stronger than Will Esper's, but he kind of freaked me out with his huge eyes and intensity, which didn't really suit stoner/loser Will's lackadaisical attitude. New Tunny's voice blended well with Van's. His tattoos were a little different too. And Gerard Canonico rocked the kettle drums in "Whatsername". And then. Then a Green Day concert broke out. They played for an hour, and all the cast joined them on stage, including most of the original cast who've already moved on. (Stark Sands, please lose the flannel; hipster fashion needs to let go of it.)

ETA:  how did I never notice Gerard Canonico and Alysha Humphress shotgunning during Jesus of Suburbia?  And I missed the old Favorite Son's pull ups as he slides out the window for his song, although the new Favorite Son's pec dance clearly pleased the crowd.  And Bust magazine was what Heather packed into her diaper bag during Too Much Too Soon?  Cool. And finally, I know what was written on all the pink flyers Whatsername tossed:  LOVE HAPPENED HERE.
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
+  Green Day's "Awesome as ****" live album lives up to the title and is awesome as....  I've got the new Soundgarden and Panic! albums to listen to, too, now, based on The Biochemist's recommendations.  Tuesday really was Super Tuesday in terms of music releases, wasn't it?

+  The US-Spain Davis Cup tie will be played in Austin!  Road trip!  Tickets go on sale April 4th.  As soon as prices and availability are released, I'll be number crunching the budget to see how much PBJ I'll be eating to go :)

+  Dear Big Name NY Pubbed Romance Author:  what the hell is "desert-style zero-scaping"?  Do you mean xeriscaping?  

+  RIP Elizabeth Taylor.  I didn't really *get* you as an actress, but I appreciated your Hollywood Grande Dame status and your AIDS charity work.  Your jewelry was pretty cool, too.

+  Galley Cat linked to this essay about being a book hoarder, which makes me stop and take stock.  Because I do have a hard time letting go of any book once it has made its way onto a shelf in my home or office.  Except maybe statutory supplements that are updated annually, it's easy to dump them in the office library's recycling bin.

+  It's ridiculous how appreciation for a particular actor will make you watch a television show that is otherwise not to your taste.  For instance, I try to watch Mr. Sunshine sometimes because I  ♥  Allison Janey.  

+  I've now given up Chick-Fil-A's sweet tea and waffle fries because of this. (Courtesy of @redrobinreader, after I mentioned that I liked the tea but not the non-stop christian pop.) They were my "errands done" reward.  CFA won't miss the little bit of revenue I put in their pockets nearly as much as I'll miss the sweet tea (why do so few places serve it and even fewer make it right?), I'm sure.

+  Daffodils are blooming everywhere.  Which means spring is here.  But is also awesome just because daffodils are such happy, cheerful flowers.
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
Registration for #RWA11 opened today, and it seemed like everyone on my Twitter feed was registering and booking their hotel room or debating registering. I felt all D: because I'm not going. I don't actually care about the conference, per se: I'm not a writer or an aspiring writer so a lot of the workshops aren't relevant to me except in an academic sort of way; I don't need the free books -- given the size of my TBR, more free books would be ridiculous. But. But the people! So many people I "know" via Twitter or other online venues are going to be there! And I'm going to miss the opportunity to meet them!

Poking around, checking for new releases to buy or pre-order, I have not found much of interest. SEP has a new book out today that appears to be well-liked by the rom-reading community, but I stopped reading her several books ago, and even if I were inclined to give her a second or third chance, the price of the ebook is ridiculous. February doesn't seem to have many great offerings either: the exceptions are the new In Death book and Carla Kelly's inspirational (which I'm kind of ambivalent about). Jaci Burton's Play by Play will be out in early February, too, and it is one book that has been completely sold by the cover art. Call me shallow.

My reading slump seems to have accelerated. It's the 18th of the month and I've only read three books. Three!  The only thing that is remotely like a silver lining is that since I've read so little, it's been relatively easy to post about each book.

Erin Brockovich (of movie and class action fame) is now writing fiction? Legal(ish) suspense? Uh, okay. The curiosity factor might make me pick it up at the bookstore, but the hardback format would have me either skimming it in the store or waiting for a used copy from Paperbackswap.

The Biochemist broke my brain. Or caused me to break my brain, depending on how you look at it. We were exchanging emails about a potential fic for me to write when the conversation veered into the NYC pop/punk music scene of the late 90s. Ray Person + Gabriel Saporta = brain exploding.  Just the thought of the pair of them with their pimp shades...I can't even.

Dear Melissa Etheridge, I'd love to see you as St. Jimmy on Broadway during your one week run in February, but I don't think it'll happen due to scheduling issues.  This makes me very, very sad, because I think you'll rock the dissolute, seductive, threatening St. J. in a way that's completely different from Tony Vincent and Billie Joe Armstrong's presentations of the character.
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
I have a book review of sorts to post later for SBD, but first, I wanted to share some links and videos.

Er, also, today is the deadline for AAR's Top 100 voting.  I couldn't be arsed to list 100 books.  Really, I get lost after the first 20 or so.  But it's always interesting to see what other people through were the best of romance to date.  When the list is published, I'll give my opinion book by book, just to compare my taste with the standard/average reader taste.


Now, onto the links and videos.

First, okay, government cheese, yes, whatever, plus the farm subsidy, which needs to be seriously reconsidered.  But now the federal government is pushing the consumption of even more cheese?  

Second, courtesy of Bill in Exile, is this very funny video explaining the Fed's retarded fiscal policy, quantitative easing.

Next, a while ago TBC and I discussed how we preferred different versions of songs, live vs. album vs. covered by others.  For example, Green Day's Whatshername on the album is pretty good but not my favorite song and the version of the cast album is ~meh~ to me.  And yet I love this version from the AOL Sessions (despite all the guyliner John Gallagher Jr. is sporting):





And last, seriously, would you ever guess that this guy was a governor?

Photo courtesy of Midnight Sun.

His band, O'Malley's March, played local gigs before his political career kicked into high(ish) gear, first as mayor of Baltimore then governor of Maryland.  I heard on the radio that last year they played at the Baltimore Irish Festival, so I'm assuming they still fit some performances in with the busy gubernatorial schedule. 
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
The audience for American Idiot was very different compared to A Life in the Theatre. As The Biochemist said, blue haired in an entirely different way. Although the audience for ALitT wasn't actually that old -- I'd say average age was 30s, while AI was probably 20s. There was a sizable population of parents dragged to the show by teens.

Billie Joe Armstrong was playing the role of St. Jimmy for a week while Tony Vincent was away. I heard a couple people in the crowd wondering if he'd do all four weekend shows. Announced at beginning, very casually: btw, the role of St Jimmy, usually played by Tony Vincent, will be played by BJA today --> humongous roar.

Set design was excellent. I'm told that it may be derivative of Rent, but since I haven't seen that show, it seemed original and cool to me. Love the band on stage. The trapeze that was used in the opening, when the entire cast sang "American Idiot"? I couldn't figure out if/how it was going to be used, but it worked really well for Tunny's dream/delirium scene.

Stark Sands as Tunny, in uniform --> character confusion for me b/c uniformed Sands = Nate Fick in Generation Kill. TBC pointed out that Tunny is a very angry character (and Sands' body language conveys that pretty well), while Fick was frustrated rather than angry. Beyond the uniform, the very buttoned up polo at the beginning of the show contributed to my Tunny/Fick confusion, because Fick is a pretty buttoned downed character. Although, yes, Tunny seemed much angrier, or at least angry in an undirected way vs mad at the idiocy of command.

Was sitting orchestra right, so couldn't see BJA til he started down the stairs but could tell when he appeared because of the roar. He's smaller than he looks on tv and in photographs, skinnier, wirier. The squeals when he took off his shirt at the end were kind of surprising, TBH. His St. Jimmy was not as dark or imposing as Tony Vincent's looks (based on pics and reviews -- haven't seen his performance), it's more the devil on your shoulder, egging you on to things that are bad for you. Seductive, kind of.

The music. I liked the original American Idiot album, but I LOVE the cast recording of the show's soundtrack, which includes songs from AI and also 21st Century Breakdown. The choral sound appeals, especially "21 Guns". Which is weird, because I associate choral music with religious music, which I don't care for. The encore performance of "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" with the entire cast singing and playing guitar was pretty cool.

Was it weird for BJA to be on stage and to sing but to *not* sing lead vocals on most of the songs, but to wait for St. Jimmy's parts?

Apparently, the cast usually hangs out after the show and signs autographs. I didn't hang around to find out. The crowd hanging around for BJA was ridiculous: literally, they blocked the exits from the theater, crowding the sidewalk, waiting for a chance to see him get into the waiting SUV. NYPD was there, forcing people to NOT stand in the street, which led to a complete blockage of the sidewalk to the point that people in the theater who just wanted out couldn't get out.

Anyway, I'd've gone to see it again while in town but for other tickets and plans. The other tickets were to Mamet's A Life in the Theatre with Patrick Stewart and T.R. Knight. It's a two man show, a comedy, with multiple plays within the play, following the relationship of an older theater actor and a newcomer. Quite funny, although I was a little unthrilled with the casual misogyny of Robert in a couple of scenes. Biggest giggle for me: the barre scene in which Captain Picard works on stretches in first position while wearing black tights and purple leg warmers.

jmc_bks: (flaming june)
It's Monday, which means I should have an SBD post, but I'm struggling to write a post for Readers Gab right now. So SBD may be tomorrow instead.

Mother's Day turned out to be nice, despite an inauspicious start.  Invited Mom for dinner, had new storybooks and flowers for her.  She and stepdad arrived an hour early.  Why?  Because he thought it would take longer to get here, he said.  Because he was talking on the cell phone while driving and missed the exit to stop for one of their errands, she said.  *shrugs*  They were welcome, but I was just getting out of the shower after running errands, etc., and dinner wasn't ready.  A good time was had by all, and the Lemon Chicken with Asparagus and Rice was a hit, as was the Berry Shortcake.  The Computer Guy came over, too. 

Plans appear to sort of be made for the family trip to Ireland.  It's all in the hands of Organized Aunt.  All I want to know is if I need to get an international drivers license and be prepared to drive on the left.  And also, if I can just meet everyone at JFK on the day of the flight.

Spent 5 hours in a single meeting on Thursday and again on Friday.  Bailed on today's meeting, going back for tomorrow's.  Who hired these consultants?  Surely there are consultants out there who understand the legal process, yes?  These are accountants, which is fine, but only a TINY piece of what goes on in our group.  

How did I miss the fact that two of the Dixie Chicks have released their own album under the name Court Yard Hounds.  Anybody listened?  Opinions?  Also, I don't need to add a road trip to Chicago to see the Eagles and Dixie Chicks together, right?  Have seen them both separately.  Nothing new to see, right?
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
Figuring out what I really want to do/see on short trip to London. As Sir Walter Elliot says in the adaptation of Persuasion, I am for Bath. But what else am I doing? Overloaded with information from friends and colleagues. Go here, go there, you must do this or that! The variety of choices is paralyzing. [Rethink that -- noun is variety rather than choices, is it singular or a count noun? Think singular.] So I'm starting with something easier -- what am I taking to read on the flight? It has to be something I probably won't mind leaving behind in a "book crossing" sort of way. Probably I'll take a couple of the RWA books I haven't managed to try.

Unrelated: on Ace of Cakes tonight, I saw that Mary Alice (who rocks) has a WTF? stamp. Want. It would be extremely useful for work. The risk would be overuse, actually. :P

Also, Jack's Mannequin on TDS tonight? Very, very good IMO. Must download a copy of Swim from iTunes, along with Them Crooked Vultures.

The subject line of an item in my spam folder asked if my love stick was hard enough. I did not realize anyone used "love stick" other than the authors of 80s bodice rippers, but I suppose spammers need to be innovative...
jmc_bks: (Stupid)

Today's earworm:  alternating songs from Cobra Starship's Hot Mess album.  The title track and The Scene Is Dead - Long Live the Scene.  In particular the chorus and the lyric, I can love you like a sailor, I can make you dance all night.  As I mentioned to The Biochemist, whenever I hear this song, I imagine all of the Cobras in sailor suits with bellbottoms and pinafore tops.  The image needs to Go Away.

It may not (hah! isn't, I'm sure) obvious from my blog, but one of my primary characteristics is curiosity.  Four words that describe me best are I want to know.  Which is politely called curiosity but could also be incurable nosiness.  My mom tells stories about me being frustrated at school as a child because I wanted to know more than I was being told/taught. And also of being accidentally elbowed because I hovered too close as she worked at the counter in the kitchen.  I needed to see what was going on!  One of the reasons I'm good at my job is that when I see anomalies, I want to know why they are, to figure them out and fix them if possible.  Which means that a lot of people ask me to fix things for them that aren't really within the scope of my job.  I don't mind usually.  But I've reached the point that 1) I don't have time for this because of my own workload, and 2) I've felt like one colleague (who everyone agrees -- including his supervisor -- is really not up to his job, intellectually speaking) is taking advantage, shuffling "problems" to me that have been assigned to him for resolution, then taking credit for my solutions.  Today I said no, which is pretty hard for me in the work context.  No, I'm not taking those back and fixing the problem.  They were correct when I gave them to you, and all of the documentation attached verifies that; anomalies in the electronic files that appeared after I turned them over to you, perhaps because of a bug in the database, are a computer/tech problem.  To resolve that, you need to work with IT and solve the problem yourself.  I felt lazy, like one of those people who refuses to perform any task not specifically listed in their job description (we have many of those at the office), but also justified.   

And for Kate, a beach photo:

 This was taken just after sunrise on one of the windier days last week.  So much wind that despite the sun, the beach was empty that day.  The boardwalk and neighborhood businesses did brisk business though, since people couldn't really lounge comfortably in the 20mph wind.
jmc_bks: (Nadasco - 08 Spain Davis Cup)
~A while back I bought a copy of Alex Beecroft's False Colors; wasn't sure I wanted to spring for it at first, but was encouraged by Joan/SarahF's review.  It's been on the TBR ever since, but I pulled it off the pile the morning.  And what do I see this afternoon?  Bujold's thoughts (very general) about the book.  I'm not sure I agree that the story must've begun life as retooled Hornblower's slashfic, which seems a little dismissive.  Or maybe I'm reading that into her comment and being too touchy.

~(500) Days of Summer...as the narrator says, this is not a love story.  Well, it is, but it is a love story in the non-genre sense:  no HEA.  Loved the nature of the narrative, jumping around, and the surreality (is that a word) of certain scenes.  Thought Joseph Gordon-Levitt was very good, even singing drunken karaoke.  The only drawback for me:  the actress cast as Summer reminded me of the actress who played Jennifer Schecter in The L Word.  She's the TV character I despise the most, ever. (Which I think Ilene Chaiken intended.)  Zoe Deschanel's performance was fine, but I never got past the resemblance. 

~Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.  SPOILERS FOLLOW.  If I had not read the books, I might've thought this was a fairly good summer movie.  In terms of the series, it left a great deal to be desired.  Where did the opening scene come from?  Are we finished with the Dursleys?  Burning down the Burrow?  Running around the marsh and country surrounding it?  No Bill and Fleur?  How is the set up of Deathly Hallows going to work:  their wedding played a fairly large role in the beginning of the book.  No battle at Hogwarts?  And that flat announcement at the end that Snape was the half blood prince?  And what is up with that bad dye job and weird hair cut for Snape?  Ron seems even less likeable in film than on the page, which is saying something because I like him a little less every time I reread the series.  But, oh, the Weasley twins as business men...

~I totally want to see Where the Wild Things Are and GIJoe.  And Julie & Julia (despite Amy Adams, who is too cute and perky and nasal to live).  Fame not so much.  And Sherlock Holmes...well, Mark Strong might get me to the theater, but it'll be a very hard sell since Jude Law makes my skin crawl with his smarm.

~The Academy Is... and Gym Class Heroes are at the Pier Six Pavilion on Monday.  Forgot to buy tickets, but there are still plenty, including the lawn, so I'm not worried about missing the show.

:- )

Jul. 24th, 2009 10:50 pm
jmc_bks: (Default)

From The Biochemist (a/k/a Music Pimp) after my question about boycott/reinvent love.

jmc_bks: (seagull)

~ Today's question for the Music Pimp:  "Reinvent Love" as key phrase for Panic at the Disco vs. "Boycott Love" from Fall Out Boy.  Please to be explaining the philosophical approaches of each band as reflected in these phrases. 

~ I want to see "The Hurt Locker" again.  It's a movie set in a war zone but it isn't about war per se; instead it's all about one EOD's adrenaline/explosions addiction.  Well, maybe obsession is a better word, even though he calls is the one thing he loves as he talks to his infant son.  Very high testosterone movie, violent, but not in the way that a lot of blockbuster movies are, with bullets flying needlessly and gratuitous explosions.  The cinematography (is that the right word?) and the blocking (maybe) were reminiscent of old westerns, especially as James suited up and walked toward the potential bombs alone, like the sheriff stalking toward the desperadoes in a show down.  The director also had no qualms *at all* about killing off big name actors, which is different.

~ Yum, fresh tomatoes, just picked by my neighbor from his Topsy Turvy (which he loves).

~ I just read a scene in which the hero's "beard stumble" rasped.  Stumble?  Really?  No proofreading?

~ The convenience of ebooks wins again.  I posted back when Dark of Night was published that I was removing Suzanne Brockmann from the auto-buy category for the next book, Hot Pursuit, because I was not interested in Sam & Alysssa as protagonists in a suspense series.  However, after listening to her speak at RWA, I'm feeling intrigued and inclined to maybe borrow the book as hardback or buy a copy when it is released in mass market format.  Turns out it will be available for $9.99 (and presumably $9.95) in e-format, which I would be willing to pay.  The convenience and pricing of ebooks win again, making a sale where there probably would not have been one otherwise.
 

jmc_bks: (bashful)
I watched the video to "I Don't Care" the other day; hadn't before, just listened to the song on my Shuffle.  Imagine my suprise when the video stopped, flashed to a picture of a cat in a bib sitting in front of a plate of spaghetti.  What?  Rewind.  Yes, still there.  

Photo under the cut )



So I checked with The Biochemist, purveyor of all things FOB.  Nope, didn't happen in her copy of the video, which was downloaded from iTunes.  Huh.  I dl'd the whole album, including the video, from iTunes too.  Why the difference?  Who put it in and why?  Are there different versions of the video on the album vs. other sources?  [Turns out that it was intentional, according to Wikipedia.]
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
I have had that line stuck in my head for days.  It has alternated with "I don't care what you think as long as it's about me" and "Does your husband know the way that the sunshine gleams from your wedding band?" 

Curse you, Fall Out Boy. 

Gym Class Heroes will be playing with The Academy Is... at Pier Six on July 27th.  And The Cab will be at The 9:30 Club on the 28th.

And for a complete change in musical speed, George Strait is playing at Nissan Pavilion, a venue I don't care for.  But he's also playing at Reliant Stadium; I could arrange to visit The Biochemist about that time, couldn't I?  Hmmm.

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