Netflix ate my face this summer and I enjoyed every soul sucking moment.

August 20, 2009 at 3:22 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

I love movies. I love TV (good TV).

Netflix’s birth brought joy into my life like a long awaited-wailing-newborn baby is the light of her mother and father’s eyes.

Then came Netflix’s Instant Watch.

A miracle, like I was five years old staring at the presents under Grandma’s tree. How did Santa know where I’d be?

At first the Instant Watch stocked rare documentaries and some long cast off TV series. Random flicks, foreign films, Law and Order (of course).

No worries. New movies appeared in the New on Instant Watch page every day. A deal with Starz, nickelodeon. Until we are here today, with full seasons of 30 Rock, Weeds, Leverage, and Dexter available and B movies you never had the time to check out but as long as it’s on the computer (practically for free) – hey why the dickens not?

(Practically) free movies and TV shows are great – DAMN expensive these days, up to $70 a pop for one season on DVD – but the most pleasure I get from Instant Watch is from the discoveries. Instant Watch is like walking through Blockbuster with an aimless desire to pick up a movie, only you can pick a movie and try it out for five minutes and put it back if it’s a bust. No late fees, no lines, no busted DVD players that can’t read your disc, no scratches (Huzzah!). There’s no pressure to watch the Big Hollywood Hits because you don’t want to waste money on a possibly interesting indie film.

Thank you Netflix. Thank you Instant Watch.

I’ve belly laughed off my computer chair onto the floor watching all seasons of Coupling. Caught the charming Season 1 of 30 Rock, became a huge fan of Dexter after spending a sick day at home watching the entirety of season 1, developed a lifelong obsession for Xena: Warrior Princess, worked my way through seasons 1-3 of Law and Order: Criminal Intent in order, and discovered a few fantastic indie films I’d never have heard of if it weren’t for you, Netflix.

This open love letter to Netlix is also a love letter to every movie I ever watched on Instant Watch.

Twelve and Holding.
Xena: Warrior Princess.
Dead Like Me.
Pheobe in Wonderland.
Nine Lives.
The Office.
Word Play.

Those are just a few.

I’ve spent this summer with a $13/month 2 DVD at a time plan (unlimited Instant Watch). I was determined to make the best of the plan. Thanks to Feedflicks: my efforts amount to $1.25 a movie. (That’s a load of films to month ratio, and no life to summer ratio).

I shall also give a shout out to Redbox which spent the summer bleeding my dry (ever so slowly) one dollar at a time.

Wondrous inventions.

Sweet life.


The Tale of The Fed Up Father and The Troublesome Bouncy Ball

August 19, 2009 at 3:09 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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Cleaning house on my computer and so i present Yet Another DU Article:

Will’s account of his needy Tamagatchi brings to mind an anecdote of my own.

Several years ago my sibling obtained a rubber bouncy ball. The toy was one of those sparkly affairs with a noise making mechanism embedded in the middle that activated when the ball hit a surface. At first, it was all fun and games – bouncing the toy off our heads and chucking it at each other’s butts. And then things changed. The ball made noises when it lay in a corner, untouched. Nothing could stop it. We tried exorcism, the Ghostbusters, and forcing it to listen to NPR. The dog refused to fetch it. We resorted to stuffing it inside a teddy bear, inside a blanket, inside a pillowcase, inside a shoebox and under a pile of clothes in the sibling’s room that had been there so long MapQuest listed it at its own address. Our peace did not last long, for within days it was at its antics again, blasting its alarm – through the clothes and shoebox and pillowcase and blanket and teddy bear – at an ungodly morning hour. My father was not pleased. He stormed into the sibling’s room, extracted the ball, marched to the end of our street, and catapulted the toy into the canyon.
Sometimes, if you listen closely at night, you can hear it screeching with the coyotes at the moon.

Oh, the education.

August 19, 2009 at 3:06 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Over the last half a decade it seems as if the administration has been playing 52 card pickup with the school’s future. Dress uniform days relocated thrice in that time, uniform dress codes oscillate like political polls, staff turnover is increasing (though this is likely due to the gutted housing economy in California), the million dollar hellion of a science building that stands – limps – on the outskirts of campus, a WWI style barrage of misguided drug talks, and not one but two conspiracy theorists (condoms & Zodaic) hijacked assemblies to reach the student forum. Whew.
As recent speaker, CNN honcho, Jonathan Klein, might agree: at least one equation seems balanced. The 07-08 assembly speaker roster is a great improvement on recent years. I’m not just saying that because Larry King’s projected face referred to me indirectly. Twice. The speakers’ fame however did not prove to be the tipping point. Klein’s presentation was “eh” (frankly any journalist could have delivered his speech) and the Q&A brief. Somers, Dallek, Rev. Kyle, and Cantus combined in a fairly well mixed cocktail of engaging and intellectual if not bearable assemblies. Cheers to that. And while I take issue with the standing ovations that have risen to follow those presentations this season, that’s for another article, another late out-fishing-for-topics night.

Leave the Starving to the Artists, Not the Art.

August 19, 2009 at 3:03 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

For his exhibit in the Bienarte 2007 in Costa Rica, “artist” Guillermo Vargas Jimenez kept a captured dog chained under a sign “Eres Lo Que Lees” (“You Are What You Read”) spelled out in kibbles. The dog, which he named Natividad, was a stray. The exhibit was a response to what the artist saw as a desensitized population to the many dead and dying dogs (and sometimes people) that line the Costa Rican streets. Said Jimenez, “An animal becomes the center of attention when I put it in a place where people go to see art, but not when it is in the street dying of hunger.”

The dog’s fate is shrouded in internet backlash and exhibit cover up. In one article Jimenez refuses to disclose whether the dog was ever fed. The same article reports that the dog died during the exhibit (whether it was due to starvation is unclear). In one source the exhibit manager reports that Natividad was fed frequently and “escaped” during the night. Navitidad’s story went viral, causing incensed YouTubists to post videos of the exhibit and animal lovers to start a petition to prevent Jimenez from displaying his art at the Bienarte 2008.

Jimenez called the outraged reaction to his art the very hypocrisy he was trying to exhibit. Was it art? You decide.


Do You Wanna Date My Avatar?

August 19, 2009 at 3:51 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Hooboy. Felicia Day, Jed Whedon, and The Guild webseries crew have plunked down on the internet yet another hooter. Their music video, “Do you wanna date my avatar?”, follows the same vein as the webseries, which involves a hodgepodge group of MMO players who are in the same guild online in a WOW-ish game. “Do You Wanna Date My Avatar?” is pretty much what the title suggests – Felicia Day posing as her “WOW” avatar and luring the viewers into lighthearted hilarious sedecution (amongst fake falling coins and her “plus five two dexterity vest”).

The song will be stuck in your head for hours, trust me. The YouTube video is a great first view but please support The Guild cast and buy the song and music video from or your friendly neighborhood iTunes.

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