Called for Backup

Song Sung By Backed Up By
Don’t Forget Me When I’m Gone Glass Tiger Bryan Adams (for Heaven’s sake!)
My Life Billy Joel Peter Ceterra (from Chicago, you damn kids! No, not that Chicago)
Stormfront Billy Joel Richard Marx (the only act I have seen twice on the same tour, werd!)
Put On Your Little Brown Shoes
C’est Le Bon
Supertramp Ann and Nancy Wilson (partying Heartily, no doubt)

That’s what I could think of off the top of my head.

I have so much good bar bet trivia roaming in my head, I should go to bars and bet more frequently.

Mistress Says: Join the Summer Reading Club, Slave!
It’s Always the Quiet Ones
The Secret of Leatherbound Books Revealed

Sorry, I couldn’t go with a single headline to describe this story about a Washington librarian who was discovered to be into S & M. She even had a Web site, but Google’s not caught on yet in non-technological industries’s recruitment habits.

Within any profession, including librarians, teachers, and even certain presidents, you’ll find a swath of lifestyle choices, including some sexual practices which some people would find unaesthetical at best and an abomination at worst. But like this lady says, she’s a reasonable person who can keep her hot side hot and her cool side cool and can separate work from play. I’m a firm believer in the public face/private face dichotomy since I like to project a strong, firm image to the people I meet and only when I get to know people do I admit I have cats.

My quickly-leaping mind has landed upon the conclusion that this reflects the proper culmination of the “let it all hang out” philosophy of the unbridled and paradigm-dumping youth movements of our country. Now that those youths have let out enough to be hung with, the peers who encouraged it can tighten the noose. So be it. And in twenty years, the only people that the baby boomers will have left to vote for and to hire for any position requiring public trust will be six guys and eight woment who have lied about their pasts.

Or maybe the rest of us will grow up by then.

(Link seen on The Meatriarchy, which is not as sexual as it sounds.)

Light Posting

Okay, I have been posting lightly lately. I’ve been out of town, and I have started a new job which involves business hours and a suburban commute. When I get used to it, and when I figure out how to take an afternoon nap when I don’t get home until the evening, posting will get back to abnormal.

Wisconsin Busybody State Law Thwarted

The Mighty Wisconsin Legislature (and its governor), Took Firm Action against hoteliers who would gig their customers. Wisconsin State Statute 254.83 states:

Every hotelkeeper shall keep posted in a conspicuous place in each sleeping room in his or her hotel, in type not smaller than 12-point, the rates per day for each occupant.

Amid some other conditions.

Of course, hoteliers are happy to oblige by posting rates higher than their actual prices on the doors of the rooms into which you have already checked in. For example, the room at the Milwaukee Hyatt Regency, where I stayed this weekend, cost me $139.00 a night. The rate posted on the door: $300.00 a night. I’ve stayed in a number of hotels and motels in Milwaukee, and the practice is the same. Inflate the rate for the door, and give anyone who actually books the room a great discount.

Even if you factor in the “Welcome to our friendly town/state (sucker) tax rate of 15% on the room, you’re not going to pay the posted rate in Wisconsin, ever. But their state legislators cracked down on someone, sometime, and made a new law that’s easily dodged by everyone in the industry. But taxpayers pay for its enforcement, assuming its enforced, and hotel guests pay for its avoidance. Good work, legislators!

I mean, I would never pay over $300 for a room in Wisconsin unless it included a private indoor swimming pool with waterfall, a sauna, a bidet, and a complimentary bottle of California Sparkling White Wine.

Addresses on Emergency Notification Forms

I started a new job today, and as part of the mound of personnel Human Resources department paperwork, I had to fill out an Emergency Notification Form. Just in case something were to happen to me while I am at work. Such as a developer finally snaps under the nihilistic blizzard of defects I am logging and staps me with a black Bic right through the spot where the bones of the skull have knit together. And then, once he or she realizes that ramming a writing instrument into my “brain” has not harmed me, stabs me through the neck.

I tried envisioning the emergency scenario wherein the address of my emergency contact would become relevant….

“Simpson! Something has happened to Noggle! Send out the Died in His Cubicle postcard, and try to get his next of kin to schedule removal sometime this week. Oh, and turn up the air conditioning.”

Battle of the Voices: Tara Reid Versus Joey Lauren Adams

This month’s Barron’s asserts that the cover girl mutual fund Tara Reid has a sexy voice. I performed a bit of due dilligence so that I could properly compare her voice to another luminary of the field: Joey Lauren Adams.

Both have a whisper quality to them, which conveys an immediate intimacy. You have to pay attention (of course, it helps that both Tara and Joey rate highly on the *.that scale) to their words.

However, in head-to-head (or larynx-to-larynx) competition, Joey’s voice is a little smokier, a little huskier, a little more babada-babada-boom (sorry to borrow your expression, Mrs. Griswold, but understand you are not up for consideration tonight). Advantage: Joey Lauren Adams!

Thankfully, though, both women have chosen to use their powers for good (acting) and not evil (telemarketing). If they had chosen the dark path, undoubtedly they could have wreaked havoc. Undoubtedly, men’s households would have more Time-Life Books and the back windows of their vehicles would have more law enforcement association stickers on them.

Movie Review: Donnie Darko

Based on recommendations from “Burning Eye” Cullina and Robert Prather, I borrowed Donnie Darko on DVD from Adam’s House of Grilling and DVDs last weekend. I watched it tonight as part of the “Heather’s Not Here Watch DVDs Until I Collapse Feature.”

Well, I was very disappointed. I thought there’d be some barking and crawling around by a sexy chick, but then I realized this movie starred the wrong Gyllenhaal. Hey, cut me some slack, if you didn’t know there was more than one, how many Gyllenhaals would you expect to find in show business? Granted, Maggie had a small role in this film, but it would have been so bad to….. well, never mind.

So I popped in the DVD and was treated to what amounted to 113 minutes of Gothic John Hughes meets American Beauty.

Actually, you want to know the movie to which I want to compare it most easily? Pump Up The Volume for the sheer quantity of red wine drunk by the authority figures when lounging at home. Do a double feature of the two and you’ll agree.

Perhaps I am reflecting upon the movie too quickly after viewing it. Maybe this is, in fact, one of those movies that you need to think about and discuss. However, I have quite a bit of faith in my perceptions of storytelling (of which moviemaking is a subset), and when confronted with a movie that makes me think too much, I just assume the artiste with the bullhorn on the set was incompetent. Sorry, such is the case here.

I am being gracious and avoiding spoilers, friends, because I realize that you might enjoy the film otherwise (you simpleton). Still, the matter’s open for debate over a couple of yummy Guinness Draughts, Adam or Robert, should you choose.

I Did It! Almost a Movie Review of The Long Goodbye

Well, friends, I am pleased to have made it through the entirety of The Long Goodbye, a Robert Ctrl-Alt-Deleteman travesty based on a novel by Saint Raymond Chandler. And by made it through, I admit it’s not the first time I tried.

You see, here at Honormoor, tradition holds that when Heather leaves town, Brian J:

  1. Laments the home without the beautiful wife.
  2. Counts the hours until her return, and decides to soldier on.
  3. Pours a yummy Guinness Draught.
  4. Rearranges the den so that the recliner takes its deserved prominence before the television.
  5. Procures a folding table to hold the remote, the aforementioned yummy Guinness Draught, and the reading material (Barron’s, Harper’s, The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, and so on).
  6. Inserts The Long Goodbyeinto the PlayStation 2 DVD player.
  7. Tries to struggle through the lingering close-ups and extraneous emoting Altman demands.

This time, though, I made it through. Last time Heather was AFT (Away From Town), I only made it to the conversation between Wade and his wife describing the impotence of the writer with the innovative use of the reflection of Marlowe on the beach. When I passed that mark this time, though, I startled a cat with a loud “Huzzah!”

So what’s good about the film?

  • Elliot Gould as Philip Marlowe. Of course, Gould’s done a lot of the audiobook versions of Chandler’s novels, so I am used to his narration.
  • Speaking of which, Marlowe does a lot of talking-to-himself asides (when wandering out of earshot of other characters), and these asides are properly in the voice I would expect from the Chandler detective.
  • As a viewer from 30 years in the future, I was interested in the contemporary settings into which Altman placed the (then) 30-year-old Marlowe. The depiction of L.A. in 1973 was interesting in itself.

What’s bad?

  • Running a Chandler plot through an Altman prism? Double plus ungood.
  • Lingering about six beats too many on plot points or conversations that do not advance the script.
  • Marlowe never finds out about his cat.
  • The ending, in which Marlowe….well, it would never fly today as it flew then. Not in a blockbuster which appealed to the unwashed masses for whom Chandler was actually writing. It was too abrupt, as though Altman knew he’d expended two hours on irrelevant closeups and repeated renditions of the title song and had to cut something like “plot.”

So if you’re a Chandler fan, I’d recommend viewing it. It’s not The Big Sleep or The Big Sleep, but Gould might make a better Marlowe than Bogart or Mitchum. Until The Blue Dahlia comes out on DVD, we Chandlerites have to choose our battles among those who would dare interpret his work on screen.