Monthly Archives: November 2007

HOLY ****.

Just when I thought nature couldn’t get any scarier, a spider, a lobster and a horse have a kid. Why does this thing look like it could sit in a chair and carry on a conversation with me? And you know he’s a fighter. If my face were made out of jalapeños and barbwire I’d beat the crap out of every trick who got in my way. I read that these things come from Iraq. So we’ll add that to our list of things that come from Iraq — body parts, people who hate us and spiders who buy no-tangles Johnson & Johnson.

Is Flavor Flav the ugliest man ever?

The answer just may surprise you!**

Flavor Flav. Rapper. Star of the 1984 film, Gremlins, and VH1’s cultural train wreck, The Flavor of Love. Lover of large clocks. “The Flav” (to his friends) has to be the ugliest man ever put on television. Remember when your best friend performed at the talent show? He jumped around the stage doing karate and yelling, “Hiyah! Heee-YAH!”, then tripped over the gym mat and everybody started laughing. You knew that he was the pear-shaped loser, but for some reason your ears were burning. It felt like everyone was laughing at you, because you were embarrassed for him. Remember when that happened to me? Well, that’s not the case with Flava. We love every sphincter-clenching minute of screen time they give this crazy-*** *****. Let’s take a look!

Here, in an impressive example of movie magic, is a picture of Flavoure as one of those freaky gremlins. Chris Walas, who worked as a special makeup effects artist on the film said, “We were shooting for a week before we realized he wasn’t wearing any makeup. We’re still not sure how he was able to shoot more of those things out of his back every time he got wet… He really is a goblin, huh?” Hahaha, he sure is.

One of The Flav’s favorite clocks. Where does he get them from? Why is he wearing an Oreo letter-jacket with Nutter Butter and Nilla Wafer patches on it? It’s all part of the Flave’s mystique, and the reason why dozens and dozens of dirty women are willing to go on national television to get just five minutes in a jacuzzi with this shriveled-up male specimen – who, without a shirt on, looks surprisingly like a strip of beef jerky. Mmm, I can just imagine those hickory-smoked juices in my mouth right now. And so can dozens and dozens of dirty women.

This last picture needs no explaining. Of course, the smart Gremlin who wore a suit and glasses and sang show tunes made the movie for me.

No amount of editorializing is needed to conclude that, yes, The Flav (I can call him that because I’m his friend) is in fact, the ugliest man ever. And, you know, maybe that’s why haters wanna hate. Because we’re all ugly too, but not nearly as popular. The third season of Flavor of Love starts in January. Set your TiVo’s everyone!

**Answer will not surprise you.

“You can’t stop what’s coming.”

I’ve been looking forward to this from the moment a friend of mine brought up the R-rated trailer and said, “You’ve gotta check this out,” and was finally able to see it tonight. Although we all walked out of The Ladykillers thinking “WTF?”, the Coen Bros. have come back with a movie as strong, if not stronger than Fargo and The Big Lebowski. If you read the book and liked it, you’ll love the movie. The entire thing has been very faithfully adapted, and seeing it all presented visually helps to clear up a few plot points that are a little confusing in the book. The story, boiled down, is this: Texas good ol’ boy Llewlyn Moss (played by Josh Brolin, of Goonies fame) runs across a group of dead Mexican drug runners, a truck full of heroine and two million dollars. Of course, he takes the money and runs and is soon after on the run from law enforcement and hitmen both.

Rounding out the trio are Sheriff Ed Tom Bell (Tommy-Lee Jones) and Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem). Bell, a WWII vet and local sheriff waxes philosophic on the ever-increasing evil in the world and whether or not it’s something we can really prepare against. Chigurh – who should be your favorite part of the movie – is a killer charged with reclaiming the lost two million. The action here reaches a boiling point that climaxes in an ending you truly aren’t expecting. And ultimately, that’s what you’ll love or hate about the film. This is one of those movies where half the audience walks out pissed off. If you hate it, you’ll agree with those people. If you love it, then screw them and everyone else who can’t appreciate good art. But seriously, if you’re among those who hate it, then you really can’t appreciate good art. This movie has something for everyone (enough deep-thinking for the emo kid and enough action for the big, dumb American – in all of us) and easily makes it into my top three of the year, right alongside The Assassination of Jesse James and an as-yet-unclaimed third spot (because seriously, has 2007 been THAT great a year for movies?). A+

Giving thanks? Austin man says ‘no, thanks’.

In light of the usual Thanksgiving kindheartedness and do-goodery, an Austin man is taking a different approach to the situation.

“Salvation Army already came, asking if I wanted to donate. Those soup kitchen guys came. A whole mess of them. I’ll tell you the same thing now I told them then — uh-uh,” says Dallas Swamshaw, 24. “That means no.”

At first glance, it might be hard to understand why someone wouldn’t want to lend a hand to those who are less fortunate, especially in light of Thanksgiving, a season where Americans everywhere don festive sweaters and LIVESTRONG bracelets, and do their best to look more thankful than their neighbors. According to Swamshaw, the answer is simple:

“You ever read in the Bible where it says, ‘Give a man some fish, and he’ll eat, but teach a man to fish so he won’t ask you about it anymore’? I think it’d be even more gratifying if they taught themselves. I already got a wife and two kids who yack at me for everything, I really don’t need homeless people doing the same thing.”

But can someone who does so little for his fellow man truly be thankful for the things he has?

“Of course I’m thankful,” Swamshaw says. “And I’m generous. Generous in the most painful way. I don’t want those bums with their signs to become over-descrepent on me. Over-dependent. Whatever.”

Many of Swamshaw’s family were up early Thanksgiving morning, preparing plates of food and then driving them around Austin, home to as many as 4,500 homeless.

“It’s tough love. One of these days, a bum is going to go out there and work for that quarter, because people like me wouldn’t just give it to him,” Swamshaw said through a mouthful of pumpkin pie. “And then he’ll go out and get a haircut, or take a bath. Knowing that I helped out with that… well that’s just fine.”

People who talk…

Sometimes I wish everyone ever would leave me alone. I try to wear a scowl as much as possible, and am still not sure what about it causes people to stop and talk to me. This was this past weekend at Wal-Mart, while I stopped to flip through their posters. I was just passing the same old Jessica Simpson from The Dukes of Hazzard poster that’s been there for twenty years when this old guy comes up behind me and puts his hand on my shoulder. He says to me, he says…

“Whoa there! Flip back, let an old man dream, let an old man dream. Oh, yeah. She’s hot. Man, she is smokin’. But you know what’s wrong with her? She’s a Barbie doll. You know what I mean by that? That she’s a Barbie doll? That’s right, she looks fake. She’s probably more plastic than any Barbie doll out there is, I tell ‘ya. You know, I was at the Q-Mart – that’s an open-air market near where I live – the other day because I go down to see what they got, because sometimes they’ve got some really old collectible stuff there, you know?”


“Anyways, I was there and I was talking to this woman who was all done up just like that broad in the poster there, and I told her that. That she looked just like a Barbie doll. Man, there are some weird people there, I tell ‘ya. I saw this one guy there who had like, five or six parrots on his arms and shoulders, just walkin’ around. Ain’t that the weirdest thing? I don’t know. There’s something weird about that place. It attracts all the weirdos. They thrive in that kind of atmosphere. I was actually down there looking for the Sonny Chiba “Street Fighter” movies, but I couldn’t find them anywhere! I wanted to see them because they were talking about it in that one movie Pulp Fiction, where the guy is talking to the girl and he says ‘If I had to screw any guy, it would be Elvis’. You ever see that?”

“I thin–”

“Oh yeah, that’s right, it wasn’t Pulp Fiction. It was True Romance. I love that movie, Pulp Fiction. I remember when it first came out, everybody started saying ‘My nigga!’ like the one character in that movie, where he yells to John Travolta, ‘My nigga!’ Of course, the blacks, they’re just like the Jews, you can’t use their words or they get all upset. Blacks can say ‘my nigga’ to other blacks, but if a white says it he gets his ass handed to him. Hey listen, am I holding you up or anything? Because if I am, then just say somethin’, I don’t want to keep you from anything, you know? Man, that was a sweet movie. Say, I’m gonna let you go now. Man, that broad is hot. I wouldn’t mind having that poster, you know? Just hang it up on my door or something. The wife would kill me though. Alright, I’m gonna let you go. It’s been nice talking to ‘ya!”

And with that, he left. I paid for my Beef Tips, jumped in my car and did 80 all the way home. Now it’s my wife that handles the shopping. If going to the store, or even outdoors, means I have to run that weirdo gauntlet, then count me out.

I ♥ He-Man

Do you remember better, simpler times when the cartoons you watched on TV didn’t have to make sense, or even be that good? Pepperidge Farm remembers. I recently spent some of my wife’s hard-earned money on some Masters of the Universe DVDs, and they’re about as senseless as people who respect Carlos Mencia as an entertainer.

One particular low point (high point?) in the series’ two-year run is the He-Man and She-Ra Christmas Special. Skeletor, up to his old tricks, is planning on using giant Transformers rip-offs to take over Eternia. It’s up to He-Man and two kids to stop him and save Christmas somehow.

Who are these kids? How did they get here? When was the last time you knew a white kid named Miguel? It doesn’t matter! It’s He-Man. And when he finds out that Skeletor is trying to get rid of Christmas, he’s going to be PISSED.

Of course, everything works out in the end. The Transformers are destroyed. Christmas is saved, and Skeletor’s heart grows three sizes too big and he ends up adopting a puppy or whatever the hell this thing is…

He-Man and all of his buddies throw some sort of Secret Santa party, and the two kids are never heard from again. Everyone just assumes they got back home safely. A clip from the final scene…

Orko: He-Man, have you seen Miguel and Alisha, snarf snarf?

He-Man: You know Orko, I have a feeling they’re going to be juuust fine.

Orko: Hey, why do you fight with a sword when there are spaceships and lasers lying around all over the place?

He-Man: LOL.

Terrific. Did the show make sense? Never, and it didn’t need to. At the end of every episode, Skeletor threw his hands up in defeat while He-Man and Man-At-Arms high-fived and Man-At-Arms said, ‘Spicy!”, and I made my parents go out and spend money on He-Man action figures and bedsheets and those fake He-Man muscles you could strap to your body. I was He-Man for Halloween seven or eight years in a row.

They don’t make cartoons like this anymore. After Nickelodeon dumped the original Nicktoons for junk like SpongeBob and Fairly Odd Parents, it was all downhill, and cartoons have never really been the same. At least we have the DVDs, for our kids.

Blogs bring people together. And so will I.

I’ve been meaning to start this up for a while, and finally figured that if I didn’t just jump into it, I never would. Hopefully this will be a place where I can organize my sometimes serious, sometimes funny, sometimes seriously funny thoughts; where you, the reader, can read them (as readers should), only to forget them minutes, sometimes seconds later. Because as the saying goes, once read is twice forgotten. If anyone has questions regarding myself, the site, or how I can win a free iPod, send them to I expect at least a few before me and the site fade off into sweet, sweet obscurity.

Of course, if you like what you see, pay it forward (e-mails (to your friends)).

-James B(log)ingham