It’s been a good day

In roughly chronological order:

It’s the first day of Fall. Crisp and sunny. Beautiful.

Had a good day at work, one of those days when you don’t feel like a complete idiot. I remembered to bring in some MP3 files so I had loads of 80s music to listen to. And the cafeteria wasn’t out of egg salad at lunch so lunch was yummy. Sometimes it’s the small things that make your day.

It looked like I was going to have to withdraw from a Gaelic course that I had signed up for because they changed the weekday at the last minute, but found out today that they’ve had to add another class that is on a better day for me so I won’t have to leave the course.

Some tarot bags that I’d ordered arrived and they are even nicer in person. I’ve also been connecting with a variety of crafters and artisans lately (including today) that is sparking my own sleeping creative side.

I bid on a collection of signed art recently at eBay. The auction ended this evening and I got pipped at the post. I kind of thought I would be but I had decided that I couldn’t afford the $65+ that previous signed items from this artist have fetched. When I lost the auction, I was both amused and disappointed — amused because I *knew* someone was waiting to snipe me at the very end and disappointed because I really do feel a strange connection to this artist’s work and would have liked to have been wrong about the other bidder. Imagine my surprise when I got an e-mail from the artist later, saying he had another copy of the work I’d bid on that he was offering to me in a Second Chance listing at my last bid amount. How awesome is that?

The Heroes season opener was on tonight and it was awesome. Lots of weirdness in store for us in the future. The whole “going back in time and changing things” is going to get old really fast if they keep doing it every year, but it was a promising start. Too bad no one I know watches it — it deserves to be watched in company.

Michael Moore’s latest movie, Slacker Uprising, was released at midnight. If you are in the US or Canada, the movie is available as a free download from the site or can be viewed for free online. Demand was so overwhelming that the download server broke but they managed to come up with alternatives, including BitTorrent (though there’s currently no seeder for at least one of those so that won’t go too far), so I’m downloading it as I write.

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Ding dong, Horatio is dead

Or is he?

I’ve disliked the character Horatio Caine almost since the beginning of CSI: Miami years ago (and that’s David Caruso’s fault for the really bad, William Shatner-esque acting). That dislike is the reason that I didn’t watch the show at all last year. And the only reason I’m watching tonight is to see if it is true, if Horatio really is dead.

I’m suspicious. It’s 15 minutes into the episode, the body has gone AWOL, and no one on the team, bar one person supposedly, has seen the body. I’m sure that means that Horatio is still alive — if he doesn’t turn up alive by the end of this episode, then I imagine we’ll see him soon, and if that’s the case, guess who won’t be watching this season either.

Added 19 minutes in: Ah, there we go. Hotario is alive. Well, I guess I can safely ignore CSI: Miami this year as well.

America’s Next Top Model cycle 11 episode 3

I know. It aired several days ago. I was toying with the idea of just not posting about it again. But there Erin goes again, hauling out the hard-hitting questions, making me have to post. So here goes:
Do you think Hannah is racist? Or just sheltered/naive?

I think she’s had a very limited upbringing without the exposure to people, places, and things outside of her home “in a small town in Alaska”. I think ANTM is going to chew her up and spit her out, and if it doesn’t, the modelling world will.

On the other hand, maybe she’s just a really good actress.

Was Sheena brave or silly or denying having fake breasts, then coming forward with the truth?

I think she was silly to have lied about them in the first place. I mean, come on. 100% genuine, real breasts don’t look like that in that kind of a pose. They just don’t. Was she brave coming clean about them? Not for a second. She knew she’d been caught out in a lie and that it was going to come back and bite her in the ass later. So, brave? No. But smart? Very. Sometimes it’s all about damage control.

Are Nykeisha’s excuses legitimate? Or a cop out?

The only reason she was still there this week was that ShaRaun was so much more horrible than she was. The excuses for eh-verything, the interrupting people, the inability to actually pull a good pose.

Whose photo was the best? Or worst?

I wasn’t excited by Lauren Brie’s. She looked a little sickly in it. I liked Elina’s. Marjorie looked a bit like Stevie Nicks with that headband, but hers was up there, too.

Did Isis deserve to be in the bottom two?

Yeah, I’d say she did. Her final photo wasn’t that bad but most everything she did leading up to it was less than stellar, from the posing class to the actual accessories posing to most of her ladder poses. She also really looks unkempt — and almost ashamed — whenever she comes to the judging panel. I applaud her struggle to become who she feels she should be, but she has massive obstacles (and I don’t mean prejudice) to overcome to get much further in ANTM (assuming one ignores the drama factor of keeping her). Had she not been a transsexual, I doubt she would have made it as far as she has with what she’s been doing.

What are they doing to Elina in the makeover episode next week?

I don’t know but after all the hype of the previews, someone better be getting something drastic done. And cutting long hair short, putting extensions in short hair, making Clark a brunette or someone else a blonde or redhead ain’t gonna cut it. I want to see a bald head or blue mohawk or something equally extreme to warrant the “something never done before on Top Model” shtick.

Ooh, just had a thought. Maybe it’s an extreme makeover for Isis, if you get my drift. That would truly be a “top model first”.  The ANTM Extreme Makeover Episode.

Or maybe not. Too bad — they could throw in de-hootchifying for Sheena. I have to admit that I’m disappointed by the makeover previews — making Clark a brunette is not taking out the pretty pretty. Now, a short haircut like Marjorie’s with the brown would have been something. Instead, making her a brunette will make her look even more like a gelfling.

Nomming

Went to go to bed last night. Don’t know what got into the cat. He cuddled up to me and then bit me on the chin, hard enough that my eyes started watering. I kicked him off the bed and went to lie back down. Put my hand up to where he’d bitten and my hand came away wet. Thought it was just from the tears. When I put the back of my other hand up to it again a minute or so later (it really hurt), that hand came back wet. So I turned on the lamp — the backs of both hands were red. And because I’m allergic to cats, the bite was swelling up. It looked like I’d been on the receiving end of a left upper cut to the chin.

And he had the nerve to look offended because I’d kicked him off me.

Enough with fierce

It was bad enough having to endure it from Christian all during last year’s Project Runway and then having to endure it throughout cycle 10 on America’s Next Top Model. But she’s doing it again. Tyra is using “fierce” all over the freaking place. Enough already.

The first episode of America’s Next Top Model 11 is getting weirder — and, yes, more stupid — each season. This was unbelievably bad. The whole Top Model Institute of Technology thing is just really cheesy. It looks like a really low budget (and I mean a couple of hundred dollars, tops) Sci Fi movie. Or 80s porn.

Top 5 America’s Next Top Model 11 pet peeves for this week (in addition to the above):

  1. The cattiness about and towards Isis — I’m all for general cattiness (that’s part of why we watch these kinds of reality shows) but that’s going to an ugly place almost immediately from the start.
  2. Clark — Her beauty pageant looks don’t warrant the conceit she exhibits; and she’s one of the bitchiest girls there. Maybe they’ll cut off all her hair in the makeover episode.
  3. Sharaun — Didn’t think anyone could be more conceited than Clark but here she is.
  4. Hannah continually mentioning that she grew up without water or electricity — We get it. You done growed up with nothing in the middle of nowhere. Time to move on.
  5. Tyra making the one plus-sized model hopeful stuff extra padding around her

Top 5 America’s Next Top Model 11 likes for this week:

  1. Clark being picked nearly last in just about everything — seriously, the girl needs to be taken down several pegs.
  2. Sharaun being eliminated — she was just too cocky for words. Talk about asking the Universe to slap you upside the head
  3. Isis — I don’t think she has a hope in hell of winning but she’s more model-world-savvy than any of the others
  4. Elina — One of my favourites this season, despite her having the hots for Clark. Mind you, if she can help Clark smarten the hell up, that’s even more reason to like her
  5. Sheena — Another favourite this season, possibly even my top favourite at this point

You can probably guess some of my answers to Erin at Top Model Gossip (gotta bookmark that site):

Did you feel the Top Model Institute of Technology theme worked?
Hell, no. The concept might have worked but the cheese was way over-the-top.

What do you think of Tyra’s finalist choices?
I think she picked pretty well. I might have swapped a couple but overall, I agree with her choices.

How do you feel about the girls’ reaction to Isis?
I think the overall reaction was good. Asking questions is a good sign. The cattiness from some of them was, as I said above, really ugly and says more about the girls saying the ugliness than the object of their jabs.

Is Elina’s super-strong sexuality for real? Or for drama?
Could be a little of both, but I would lean towards real. I know a couple of people like her and they are genuine. I’d love to see her hitting on Clark. I think Clark would freak out. Did you notice she was the first hug Clark after Clark was called second to last of the 14? She’s making the moves already. Too funny.

What did you think of the “voting is sexy theme?”
The concept was interesting and might be effective. I’m not sure about the sets. Bureacracy? Seriously? I get most of the others because they were about key issues — immigration, privacy, education — but “bureaucracy? Glad that Clark had that one but still think it was a lame choice.

Which girl is your early favorite?
Elina and Sheena first, followed by Marjorie

Whose photo was the best? Worst?
Clark’s and Sharaun’s were the worst. Marjorie’s and Isis’ were the best.

Who is in the greatest need of a makeover?
Almost all of them could. Isis could use a little help to soften some of the hard lines that still remain. Clark needs to lose the Brittany Spears’ look. Hannah looks too young and immature to be a model. McKey needs to lose the burgundy hair.

[Edited to add: I just replayed the elimination — did you see the sneering smirk on Clark’s face when Sharaun dropped to a crouch after being eliminated? No wonder. She’s now the Queen of Cockiness. LOL]

The smell of Fall

I don’t know what it is. It’s not what I would normally associate with the smell of Fall: decaying vegetation, a North wind, school supplies. It’s hotter than hell in my living room (probably because of the electronics in the room and the fact that the only window is the balcony door, and the balcony is partially closed in. I had such a hard time getting comfortable where I normally sleep so I got up last night and slept in the recliner in my bedroom instead of the living room. With the window wide open and a fan blowing on me, it got quite cool and I had the sudden realization that, away from heat of the living room and with the cooling down that has been coming at night, I can smell Fall coming, with Winter on its heels.

Simon’s Cat

If you have a cat and you haven’t seen these videos yet, watch them. Now. If you have seen them, watch them again. (You know you wanna.) And if you have an account at Youtube, subscribe to his channel.

All three videos are absolutely hilarious, but the latest one (uploaded a month ago but I didn’t notice until tonight) is the one I most empathize with.

Simon’s Cat “TV Dinner” Simon’s Cat “Let Me In” SImon’s Cat “Cat Man Do”

The third video upload apparently coincided with the cartoon’s television premiere on BBC2.

I just realized that his uploads of the videos have had huge numbers of views: the first and second videos have had 4,011,585 and 6,239,691 views (and 6,041 and 10,236 comments) respectively; and the third and latest one has had 2,789,188 views (4,553 comments) just in the month since it was uploaded. And he has 43,542 subscribers so far. Holy cow! I can’t believe that that only rates him #10 Most Subscribed UK and #48 Most Viewed UK and apparently not even top #100 worldwide for either.

Rogers is hijacking my Web browser

So now if I click on a link to a site that doesn’t exist, instead of the usual generic Windows “Page not found” error I was getting (by choice) before, Rogers has decided to force its branded Yahoo search engine on me.

If I wanted the damn thing, I’d’ve set it up that way. I didn’t like my Yahoo email pages being taken over so that their all branded with Rogers Yahoo — I just want plain old vanilla Yahoo, please — and I don’t like being forced to visit the pages they’ve decided I should see, regardless of my settings. I Googled to see if I can stop this, and came across Toronto Mike’s blog and his post from July 21.

If you’re a Rogers customer, here’s how you stop the hijacking. At the very bottom click “Learn More About This Page” and agree to opt out of this madness. The opt-out is cookie-based, so if you clear your cookies you’ll need to do it again.

It’s nice that there’s a solution of some kind, but “opt out”? Are you kidding me? It’s like the City of Ottawa forcing your car to drive to City Hall so you can ask for directions, forget that spiffy GPS system or that you might want to just wing it. And this isn’t actually opting out — it just changes the type of page Rogers displays when it can’t find what you’re looking for so that Search.rogers.com (rather than my browser) serves a “simple error page” instead of their search page. So it’s still hijacking the Web browser.

Someone needs to be slapped. Hard.

(PS: thanks for introducing me to the term “jerkware”, Mike)

Oh no you didn’t

You know a commercial is effective when you have the song going through your head continually.

Tonight, it’s the Mercenaries 2 commercial, “Oh No You Didn’t”.

Oh no, Oh no, Oh no, yo yo yo
(Oh no you didn’t)
Sucker tried to play me, but you never paid me never
(Oh no you didn’t)
Payback is a’comin’, you will be runnin’ forever
(Oh no you didn’t)
Until I get my vengeance, I will never end this mayhem
(Oh no you didn’t)
I’m a mercenary, you ain’t got a prayer, you owe me
(Oh no you didn’t)

Not a game I’d ever play (not that I play computer games, anyway), but the song is really catchy.

The official Pandemic Studios site for the game has the full-length version of the song (with additional verses) available for download as well as the commercial and a behind-the-scenes video you can download.