Friday, November 30, 2007
Evidently Dr. Pepper has decided the best way to promote their newest product, a Diet Cherry Chocolate Dr. Pepper, is to tie it in to Tay’s song “Chocolate Rain” and make a commercial with him! Did I miss something? Seems like a no brainer to me not to do this. In some ways it serves Dr. Pepper right. After buying a twelve pack of their Diet Berries & Crème Dr. Pepper I’m a little hesitant to try any of their new Diet Dr. Pepper flavors. And most likely a Cherry Chocolate Dr. Pepper concoction is probably disgusting.
Needless to say this video has to be seen to believe. It’s already spreading through the blogosphere like crazy and really should be watched at least once. My favorite part is the rap interlude by Mista Johnson (yeah, I’ve never heard of him either but you can check him out Here).
If you’re interested, here’s the original recording of Chocolate Rain. That is if you feel like subjecting yourself to it. I’d recommend watching at least the first 15 seconds of it…after that it just repeats over and over and over again.
Tay Zonday’s website can be found at www.tayzonday.com, it’s pretty incomplete with most of the sections saying “Coming Soon” but could actually be updated one day.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
While I had driven around the United Center (where the Bulls play) before, I had never been to an actual Bulls home game there. So this was pretty exciting for the The Blot since I’m a pretty big sports fan. The “House That Jordan Built,” as the United Center is affectionately nicknamed, was awesome. While it’s a pretty big basketball arena, the seats are still crammed in there to fit as many people around the floor as possible…it really helps make you feel like you’re part of the action. It was also the first time I had seen that particular style of box seats in a basketball stadium. They had three different rows of box seats breaking the stadium into thirds with the highest seats in the arena being boxseats. Seems weird to have such expensive seats up high but I’m guessing there’s more partying going on in those seats than actual watching of the game.
As for the game itself I was a little too warn out from my early morning flight and meetings all day to appreciate it, but I can say one thing…for all the talent on the court the Bulls sure know how to underachieve. Well I’m not sure if underachieve is the right word because they did win that night but something’s not right with the Chicago squad. The Bulls played the horrible Atlanta Hawks Tuesday night and after that win now have a record of 3-10. This is pretty pathetic considering the expectations for the team this year and the amazing young talent Executive Vice President-Basketball Operations John Paxson has put together. Now it could be that all of the preseason Kobe Bryant trade talks disrupted team chemistry, but this roster’s game IQ should have allowed them to ignore the talk and focus on the court.
I can’t think of the last time a team has had this kind of young, experienced talent. In fact, six of their top 9 players all played intricate parts of NCAA Final Four and/or NCAA National Championship squads during their college careers. This list includes Luol Deng and Chris Duhon from Duke, Ben Gordon from Connecticut, Kirk Hinrich from Kansas, Tyrus Thomas from LSU, and rookie Joakim Noah from 2 time National Champions Florida. Together that’s 4 National Championships and 9 Final Four appearances. I have to believe this has uniquely prepared these young stars for the media frenzy engulfing them today. Add to that collection of talent 4 time NBA Defensive Player of the Year Ben Wallace and Argentine Gold Medalist Andres Nocioni and you have a team that should be at the very least challenging the Celtics for the Eastern Conference title this year.
Unfortunately, I think the last few years spending first round picks on “the best available player” versus what player fits into their scheme the best has hurt the Bulls. They have now spent two first round picks and a ton of money on three players who essentially play the same position, Wallace, Thomas and Noah. None can shoot to save their life but are tenacious around the rim. Which is great if you have a Jordan caliber player that can score 60 a night, which I guess in theory is what Deng, Gordon and Hinrich are for but isn’t the type of production being put forth right now. This team was losing for almost 3 quarters of play against a team they outmatched in ability in every category. The Bulls did end up winning by 20 but it doesn’t explain their excruciatingly bad start. They have very little jump shooting ability but I’m guessing head coach Scott Skiles is ok with that. His philosophy is defense and rebounding which this team excels at.
If their scoring can only get more consistent this team will be a force to reckon with come playoffs. But I still question the roster choice of carrying both Wallace, Thomas and Noah when all three can do little more than dunk the ball on the offensive end. This kills any fluidity in the Bulls offense and makes it easier on opposing teams to defend their star players Deng and Gordon. I would imagine at some point they’re going to have to make a trade to better equip their roster for an extended playoff run. So while the play at the United Center may not be up to snuff right now, if you find yourself find Chicago and aren’t afraid of the sketchy area surrounding the arena check out a Bulls game…the crowd and atmosphere are intense and its pretty cool to see all of the championship banners hanging in the rafters from the Jordan/Pippen/Jackson era.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
“That was the night I was born.
Unfortunately, now that I've done some research and map quested the store, it looks like it's going to be way too far north for me to have time to swing by before I fly out. Oh well, I'm guessing shipping will probably end up being cheaper than the cab ride from the looks of how the store is from my hotel room.
Anyway, check out some of these newly released designs from Threadless...I think I might have to order up these first couple shirts:
Cowboys and Indians by Glenn Jones
I Love Coffee by Kirksey Wells
Penguins On Holiday by Philip Tseng
“Well I go to Total Rip Fitness but I don’t work out there.”
“What do you do?” - Ted
“So your investments..are women?” - Ted
“Yes, women who, how shall I put this delicately…they FAT. So I come here, give them lots of attention now then when they get hot who’s the first guy they run to? The one who invested in them when they weren’t.”
“Wow, I cant decided if I’m thoroughly disgusted or really, really impressed.” – Ted
Monday, November 26, 2007
The Blot was pretty excited to see the new Coen Brothers’ movie No Country For Old Men ever since seeing the trailer for it a few months ago. I love Joel and Ethan Coen (Barton Fink, O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Intolerable Cruelty, The Ladykillers) and have intently followed their careers ever since seeing The Big Lebowski. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy Fargo and haven’t seen Raising Arizona a million times, but come on, you just can’t top The Dude.
Don’t worry, I won’t give away any spoilers or plot points in this post except to say that the description of the movie’s story line on IMDB is pretty accurate, “Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon some dead bodies, a stash of heroin and more than $2 million in cash near the Rio Grande.” (Link) The movie is based on the novel by Cormac McCarthy and the story is as riveting as it is bloody. Like all Coen Brothers’ movies the dialogue is the best part and the casting of the movie was spot on. Javier Bardem (Before Night Falls) is the star of the movie for his portrayal of the psychotic Anton Chigurh. His transformation into the relentless Chigurh is amazing and terrifying all at once. He reminds me of Jack Nicholson’s Joker in the original Batman…a character so off kilter you never know what he is going to do next.
The biggest surprise of the movie to me was Josh Brolin (The Goonies, In The Valley Of Ellah) as Llewelyn Moss. While I can’t claim to have seen all of his work, his role as the hunter who stumbles upon a drug deal gone bad was amazing and possibly the greatest role of his career. I’d be shocked if he wasn’t on many critics’ Best Of Lists come awards season. The movie is really portrayed through Llewelyn’s eyes and gives the movie its greatest suspense. Unfortunately the star of the movie, Tommy Lee Jones, isn’t on screen near enough but does a very good job tying all of the different subplots together and fleshing out the story of violence raging through this small Texas community.
All in all the movie was great except for the last 5 minutes where the movie, in my opinion, kind of flames out. When the credits hit the sold out movie theater gasped but not in a good way. Most of the movie patrons were shocked that the movie had ended. Even after all of the different story lines finally converged, the audience seemed to want more. And then nothing happened. I felt like I was watching the last episode of The Sopranos all over again. The big resolution that everyone was hoping for or expected never happened and I think that left the audience unfulfilled. If you’re worried about the ending ruining the movie going experience then I recommend waiting for it to come out on DVD, but if you enjoy the Joel and Ethan Coen’s dialogue and filmmaking as much as I do then I definitely recommend checking out No Country For Old Men. Just be prepared for lots of blood, which I definitely wasn’t.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Thanksgiving...my favorite holiday! I mean what other holiday gives you A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, Pecan Pie and Cowboys football? Christmas probably comes close with Egg Nog and the Lakers, but it's still not quite the same.
The Blot is now officially on Thanksgiving break and off from work for the week. I'm heading to to Dallas, but don't worry this doesn't mean there won't be regular posting during the holiday. What it does mean is that I won't be sitting around on the computer all day everyday so I probably won't be posting multiple times a day...but I'll see what I can do.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Evidently this finally took place last week at Caroline Kennedy’s 50th birthday party via satellite. Caroline, as you may recall, is the daughter of the thirty-fifth President of the United States John F. Kennedy and his wife Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. In the article Diamond said that after seeing a picture of Caroline as “a little girl dressed to the nines in her riding gear, next to her pony…I immediately felt there was a song in there.” Now, after years and years of drunk wedding guests and karaoke singers butchering the song, we finally have a face to put to the screams of “Sweet Caroline. Bum, Bum, Bum.”
Now, if only Carly Simon would finally come out and admit who “You’re So Vain” is about!
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Here are a couple of my favorites both old and new:
For these and more check out Threadless.com.
1. Buffy No More?
Us Weekly is reporting that Buffy the Vampire Slayer star Sarah Michelle Gellar has legally changed her name. I know this is a shocker for many because who doesn’t love the three name moniker? I tried to pull it off but “The Blot Says…” just doesn’t roll off the tongue like “The Blot” does. The story is that for her and hubby Freddie Prinze, Jr.’s fifth wedding anniversary, SMG had her last name officially changed to Prinze. No word on whether or not Gellar will use Prinze professionally or stick with her signature three part name. (Zap2it.com) Gellar’s latest movie Southland Tales, written and directed by Donnie Darko’s Richard Kelly and also staring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Seann William Scott and Justin Timberlake arrived in select theaters this past weekend.
2. Acclaimed Filmmaker Kevin Smith Finds His Leads
Variety is reporting that The Blot’s favorite writer/director and creator of all things ViewAskew (Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma) Kevin Smith has cast the lead roles in his new film Zack & Miri Make A Porno. The role of Zack will be played by newly christened comedy super star Seth Rogen (Knocked Up, Superbad, 40-Year-Old Virgin) and the role of Miri will be played by Elizabeth Banks (Invincible, 40-Year-Old Virgin). Smith hasn’t had much success with movies not centered in the ViewAskew universe, i.e. Jersey Girl, but hopefully this film will be able to showcase Smith’s unique style of writing and comedy genius. (Link)
3. Japan wants Panettiere…and not for a celebrity appearance.
When The Blot saw this one the first thing I thought was “What?” Evidently Heroes’ star Hayden Panettiere traveled to Japan and joined a group of Americans and Australians to protest the slaughter of Dolphins and Whales by Japanese fisherman. (Link) I’m guessing they knew they were breaking some laws because the article says they hightailed it out of Japan as soon as the protest was over. Now Japan has a warrant out for Panettiere. Normally I’d side with Panettiere and against animal cruelty but if it means getting rid of the cheerleader’s horrible storyline in Heroes this year maybe we should extradite her. HAHA, The Blot’s just kidding…but only because Heroes has gotten so much better in the last few weeks.
4. Celebrity Apprentice Contestants Announced
I, like most of America, used to love The Apprentice. Then sometime after the second season and before the end of the third season the show lost its allure. I’m not sure why exactly, it could be any number of reasons…whether I just got tired of Donald Trump, or the contestants just weren’t as appealing, or (and I think this might be the real reason) the show just got played out and was no longer original. Then again it could be because the competitions seemed to just be rehashed and the product placement became unbearable. Regardless when I heard there was going to be a celebrity edition my interest got piqued again. That is until the lineup came out.
You know a show has hit rock bottom when it’s draining the Reality TV landscape for contestants. At one time The Apprentice was on top of the Neilson ratings…that time has definitely passed us by. I don’t know if this counts as “celebrity” in your book, but bringing back first season contestant/Surreal Life cast member Omarosa just doesn’t cut it. Stephen Baldwin is kind of a name, but after seeing him embarrass himself on Celebrity Mole for a few seasons his allure is pretty tarnished too. About the only person I’m excited to see compete is former heavyweight boxing champ Lennox Lewis, who always came across as a pretty bright guy. If you’d like to read through the full list of contestants, which includes the likes of Kiss front man Gene Simmons (who also has his own reality TV show, Gene Simmons Family Jewels, on A&E) and Olympic gold medalist softball pitcher Jennie Finch, you can check out the Yahoo article here.
Thanks to Whitney at Pop Candy for a few of these headlines...you can find headlines like these every week day at USA Today's Pop Candy blog.
Monday, November 19, 2007
That’s where we high five, and then its awkward for a little bit.
Then we high five again!”
Now here's a recap of the correct answers. The BCS conference team with the longest bowl drought is none other than the Vanderbilt Commodores who at 5-6 and with one game left in the season could very well become bowl eligible if they can beat Wake Forest at home this Saturday at 1 PM Central. That being said, even if they happen to win their record will only be 6-6 and there is still no guarantee that would be good enough for a bowl to extended an invitation to them.
The team that was already bowl eligible at the time the question was asked was in fact the Indiana University Hoosers. And after their win last Saturday against Purdue in the season finale are now a whopping 7-5 for the season, leading many to speculate their bowl draught may finally come to an end. For the record Indiana has been bowl eligible during this draught once before (with the minimum 6 wins) and were passed over for a bowl invitation...so anythings possible. But with 7 wins and the truly sad loss of IU's football coach Terry Hoeppner before the start of this season, The Blot believes they're a shoo-in for a bowl this year.
Thanks everyone for participating and be on the look out sometime next week for the next installment of The Blot Says... Trivia Contest!
Friday, November 16, 2007
This week’s installment of New TV Shows I’m Still Watching But Don’t Know Why takes us to the FOX network and its new hit comedy Back To You, Wednesdays 8/7 Central, staring two television comedy legends Kelsey Grammer (Cheers, Fraiser) as Chuck Darling and Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond) as Kelly Carr. Both of these veteran actors have won innumerable awards and accolades for their portrayals of Frasier Crane and Debra Barone respectively and now find themselves together on one of the first “traditional” sitcoms to hit the big four channels in quite some time.
The thing I do like about the show, and one of two things that keeps me coming back week after week, is the return to the classic situational comedy (sitcom) structure. Back To You is one of the few, if not only, comedies still taped live in front of a live studio audience. Growing up this was the norm for television, but once comedies moved to the single camera format television moved away from live studio audiences and either used a laugh track or, like Scrubs, My Name Is Earl and The Office, lost the laughing all together. Back To You also harkens back to the lost art of the work place comedy and is very reminiscent of shows like The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Murphy Brown. Who knows, hopefully one day soon Back To You will find the comedic writing those previous two shows thrived on.
To be honest, the show seems way too bogged down with the secondary story line that Darling, after moving back to Pittsburgh and taking over the job he left 12 years ago, finds out he is the father to Carr's child. A daughter he did not even know Carr had. Evidently the two had a fling before he left town and Carr never informed him she got pregnant. It does tie the two main characters together in a unique way (as opposed to the annoying “will they or won’t they” story line most shows use), but really doesn’t lead to much comedy gold.
The best part of Back To You, and the real reason I’d recommend watching it, is to see Fred Willard in action. No matter what he’s in he cracks me up…and he’s been in almost everything. While becoming famous for his role in the television show Fernwood 2 Night with Martin Mull and then reteaming with Mull in guest appearances on Roseanne, Willard might be best remembered for his many roles in the Christopher Guest films Waiting For Guffman, Best In Show, A Mighty Wind and For Your Consideration. I read somewhere in an interview with Willard that the role of sports anchor Marsh McGinley was written specifically for him and it really shows. The character seems like an amalgam of all of Willard’s previous character’s best qualities and allows his comedy timing to shine. I find myself laughing any time he speaks, which also happens to be the only time I laugh during the entire show.
That’s sort of my problem with Back To You, for the most part it’s just not funny. But I really like Willard and think Grammer and Heaton do a great job of acting (they're just not all that funny yet). I guess I’m holding out to see if the show’s cast and writers continue to improve, because the show really seems to have a lot of great potential compared to most of the junk on TV nowadays…until that happens or the writer’s strike kills off the remainder of the season, I’ll keep watching and wonder why.
This is probably a good thing for SNL considering how bad its writing has been lately but is horrible for 30 Rock, which was riding high off their Emmy win for best comedy. Reportedly most of the casts for the two shows will be on hand for the stage version and SNL, as is tradition, will even have a host: Michael Cera from Arrested Development and Superbad. The titles of the show are creatively Saturday Night Live – On Strike! and 30 Rock – On Strike! and tickets are a pretty cheap $20 each.
This sounds like a pretty cool, once in a lifetime experience for TV fans and I’d recommend any readers in NYC to check it out…if tickets were still available. It sounds like the SNL show is already sold out, but according to the Upright Citizens Brigade website, limited tickets to the 30 Rock show will be available the day of the show. I’m interested in seeing how they pull this off and whether or not clips of the shows make it to YouTube. If so I’ll post them on here for everyone to check out.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
2006 Lollapalooza Festival Poster
2006 South By Southwest Festival Poster