Sunday, January 28, 2007

THAT'S your slogan???

I was watching television today and a commercial came on for zit cream. With so much going on in our lives, advertisers have to get our attention as soon as they can and this product had an interesting way of going about it. The opening line in the commercial was, and I quote:

"It's hard to face your problem, when your problem is your face."

That's not an ad slogan. That's something my brother would say to me.

Well done, Madison Avenue. Well done.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Um...Thanks, But No Thanks, Sundance

Right now the Sundance Film Festival is going on out west. It's something I've always been very interested in and it's always been a small dream of mine to take part one day.

You can imagine my excitement when I heard they were putting all of the short films in this year's festival online to watch for free. Way to go, Sundance! I decided since I didn't have any plans for the evening I would stay home and watch Sundance movies and feel like I was in on something cool.

I watched five of them, chosen at random, and I think I'm done watching Sundance movies. Let me put it this way: If I ever tell you I have a short film that has been accepted into and will be viewed at Sundance, it basically means I've made a horribly boring, non-sensical, "look how arty I am" steaming pile of crap. With bad acting.

What a letdown. I might as well have re-watched Lady in the Water. At least then I would have known going into it that my time was going to be majorly wasted.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Pepsi Showdown

Today a waitress tried to make me drink Pepsi.

I was at a local dive for lunch and ordered the cheeseburger special. When it came time to order my drink, I asked what kinds of soda they served. She answered, "Pepsi products."

Thus begins my dilemma. Maybe I'm the only one that has noticed this, but I have found on more and more occasions that even though Dr Pepper is a Pepsi product (It is. Trust me. I looked it up.), a lot of places that carry Pepsi products don't carry Dr Pepper. Why this is, I have no idea, but someone needs to bring this up at the next meeting.

I asked the waitress if they had Dr Pepper, and she said no. "What do you have besides Pepsi and Diet Pepsi?" I asked. You know. Because I hate Pepsi.

She said, "We have Pepsi*, Diet Pepsi**, Mountain Dew***, raspberry tea*****, and iced tea.*****"

Fine, I thought. "I'll have a water."

"It comes with a pop."

"That's OK, water is fine."

She got mad. "But you get a Pepsi if you want it."

Guess what, lady? I know. Today isn't the day to try to serve me something I don't want. Just bring me the water, and everything will be fine. Juuuuuuust fine.

*I said besides Pepsi.
** I also said besides Diet Pepsi. Way to listen.
*** What am I, six?
**** I hate cold tea as much as I hate Pepsi.
***** But I hate regular iced tea more than them all.

Friday, January 12, 2007

How to tell Ed is sick (A test)

Am I loopy from NyQuil? _X_Yes ____No

Do I smell like Vap-O-Rub? _X_Yes ____No

Is my apartment littered with wadded-up Kleenex? _X_Yes ____No

Do I need a shave? _X_Yes ____No

Is my hair funked up? _X_Yes ____No

Am I irritable? _X_Yes ____No

Have I coughed up enough phlegm to fill a coffee can? _X_Yes ____No

If I answered "Yes" to all 7 questions, I am sick. Go to bed.
If I answered "Yes" to 5-6 questions, I am probably sick. Drink hot tea.
If I answered "Yes" to 2-4 questions, I am probably just tired. Go to bed.
If I answered "Yes" to 1 question, I probably swallowed dust.

Judging by my test results, I should probably go to bed. 'Night.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

"Read This If You're A True Friend!"

How to annoy Ed:

Post a bulletin that encourages me to re-post it, otherwise I am threatened with horrible relationships/removal from your MySpace site/bad luck/not standing up for Jesus.

I don't mind if you post a bulletin with a witty joke, humorous anecdote, or a fun survey. I often read them. But the mood is always destroyed when I reach the bottom and find out I'm not allowed to just enjoy it; I also have a homework assignment. "Pass it on!" "You would if you were a true friend!" "Jesus died for your sins, the least you could do is re-post this." (Just to serve as a head's up: If you post these things with the gentle threats included, each time I read them I hate you a little more inside.)

I've suddenly found myself in conditional relationships. This only happens online, mind you. Never has anyone had the gall to do this to me in person. "Hey Ed, I have a funny joke for you. But I'm not going to tell it to you unless you promise to pass it on to three friends in less than 2 hours, or else you won't find true happiness for the next ten years."

I'll take my chances, ya dumb geek.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Seats Like Jack Nicholson

(Ed's note: I feel I need to preface this for people who may not know me. I'm not a shallow guy; a lot of people say they aren't shallow, but I'm genuinely not. I'll admit I have some very attractive friends, but I'm also very aware that some of my friends are downright ugly. It's OK, they know who they are. And if you thought to yourself "Wow, that was mean to say," well then guess which camp you're probably in. I say all that to say this: I don't usually judge people based solely on looks. Unless they have an eye patch. In that case I still scream "Pirate!" over and over in my head. So don't hate me when I mention The Ugly People. And I'm apologizing ahead of time if an IPFW cheerleader happens to read this.)

Thursday night Dad and I were invited down to Ft Wayne by my Uncle Rick and cousin Rich to catch an IPFW basketball game. For my out-of-town readers, IPFW is the Indiana/Purdue Fort Wayne college campus. My aunt works for the bank in town and was given some free tickets and I was excited to go. I'd never been to a game before.

I was pretty impressed that the guys play their games not on campus but at the Fort Wayne Memorial Coliseum. I realized that a thousand people is a lot of people unless they're in a huge arena. Then it looks like 45 people showed up.

We didn't realize how good our seats were until we got there. On the floor. Front row. Center court. A special ticketing agent had to show us to our seats and we were behind the little blue partition reserved only for people of importance. Or their Mexican relatives.

The IPFW pep band was there. It was like a 14-piece ensemble complete with keyboards and bass guitar. They sounded really good; very tight and a very talented band. But "pep band" wasn't really the best word to describe them. Instead of playing basketball game classics like "We Got The Beat" or "Another One Bites the Dust" they chose to work the crowd into a frenzy with low-key mellow jazz hits. Again, don't get me wrong. They sounded great, they really did, but the hits of Chick Corea and The Rippingtons don't really make the best soundtrack for college basketball.

And then....and then I became very, very uncomfortable.

There are 9 billion people in the world (a true fact I made up) and a lot of those people are ugly. No big deal. We all see ugly people every day and that's just the way it is; most of us never think anything of it. But when you see 20 ugly people in one big group, then you kinda notice. And when they're wearing cheerleader outfits, you really notice.

I'm honestly not trying to be mean but something was definitely afoot. When you're front row center at a college basketball game and the cheerleaders are right directly in front of you doing a routine and you try to find any excuse in the world to look somewhere else (wow, how do all of those steel beams in the ceiling stay up there? i wonder how old that scoreboard is. what's on the bottom of my shoes?) then I think that's a red flag. One of them looked like a Picasso. I know sometimes that's meant as a compliment but in this case it wasn't. Her eye and nose were interchanged and her lips were where her ear should have been.

But hey, if they weren't physically attractive, then at least they didn't have any personalities to offset that. A lot of cheerleaders will bounce onto the floor like crack addicts with huge toothy smiles and a "Yayyyyyyyyyy" spirit; pom-poms waving and motivating the crowd to their feet. This bunch of galoots trudged onto the stage with a cheer of:

"all right. stand up"

How can 20 people say something at the same time and have it not be loud? Somehow they managed to do it. Of course, not one person in the crowd stood.

But then, then, it was halftime, and it was the dance team's turn to repulse the crowd. They tried to distract the crowd from their lack of spirit and talent by having really low-cut tops, but I think rather than finding it appealing and/or sexy it sort of made the crowd insulted. And when you manage to insult the audience of a basketball game with cleavage, you know you've definitely taken a wrong turn in Albuquerque. It wasn't enough that they were all goofy lookin'. They had no idea what the heck they were doing. There were 3 girls that obviously had no idea what the moves of the routine were and the others only seemed to sort of know. Maybe if it were the first game of the season and their dance still needed to work out a few kinks I'd understand it. But this was the fifteenth game. No excuse, people. I'm not trying to be funny when I tell you the cast of The Sopranos have more talent, timing, and enthusiasm than this group of soulless rocks.

These are actually college cheerleaders! Shouldn't I want to watch them? I was really embarrassed for them. And I shouldn't feel that way. This is the college level we're dealing with, so let's put in a little effort shall we? After the game my uncle said a friend of his had warned him ahead of time. He was told, "Wait until you get a load of the cheerleaders." Oh we got a load.

This sounds like I had a horrible time, but quite the contrary. The game itself was a lot of fun and IPFW stomped all over the team from Anderson. I was shocked how good everyone was from the three and there were a lot of great plays that made the crowd go nuts.

After the game we went to Buffalo Wild Wings for a few hours to catch the UCLA game and play that trivia thing they have there. It was a lot of fun hanging out and we all had a great time.

But man those cheerleaders were ugly.

Monday, January 01, 2007

The Reading Railroad 2006

At the beginning of 2006 I posted a blog where I listed all of the books I read in 2005 and resolved to try to read more books this year than last (27 was the number to beat). About a month and a half ago I realized I probably wasn't going to make it and suddenly went on a reading rampage (thanks in part to my speed reading skills I developed in early '06).

I did it, and I make the same resolution this year; more books in '07 than in '06. My buddies Lane and Shayne both told me how many books they were able to read in a year's time, and it was a number much greater than what I accomplished in '06, so I shouldn't be sweating it.

I'm starting off the year with a book that came highly recommended and am looking forward to another year of page-turnin' fun. For those of you keeping score, here's what I read in '06. Happy New Year!

  1. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – J.K. Rowling

  2. The Truth (with jokes) – Al Franken

  3. Which Lie Did I Tell? – William Goldman

  4. The Colorado Kid – Stephen King

  5. Mirror Mirror – Gregory Maguire

  6. Unexpected Development – Marlene Perez

  7. Belushi – Judith Belushi Pisano and Tanner Colby

  8. Layer Cake - J.J. Connolly

  9. The Ha-Ha – Dave King

  10. The Rant Zone – Dennis Miller

  11. Naked Pictures of Famous People – Jon Stewart

  12. Rock This! – Chris Rock

  13. Black Jack Point – Jeff Abbott

  14. The Third Translation – Matt Bondurant

  15. Cell – Stephen King

  16. The Night Listener – Armistead Maupin

  17. The Comedy Bible – Judy Carter

  18. A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning – Lemony Snicket

  19. The Innocent – Harlan Coben

  20. A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Reptile Room – Lemony Snicket

  21. Tao Te Ching – Stephen Mitchell

  22. 52 Pick-Up – Elmore Leonard

  23. Bag of Bones – Stephen King

  24. It's Always Something – Gilda Radner

  25. The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston Leroux

  26. Roaring Lambs – Bob Briner

  27. Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus – John Gray

  28. Me Talk Pretty One Day – David Sedaris

  29. Carrie – Stephen King