Friday, March 27, 2009

Postage Stamp of the Year: Hockey Goalie Quatchi

It's been a long nineteen years since Canada last issued a Sasquatch postage stamp, but the wait is finally over -- earlier this year, Canada Post issued this bitchin' Quatchi stamp! Here's the unveiling.

The art is taken from Quatchi's Shootout Shutout game.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Ichiro Japan Wins the WBC!

Awesome game last night. Ichiro played like shit for most of the WBC, but redeemed himself in a big way with a series-winning, two-run single in the tenth (above). Here's hoping he'll now win a championship with the M's.

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Sunday, March 22, 2009

AVQ&A: Part 1

If I could only read one web site for the rest of my life, it would be The Onion's non-satirical entertainment page, the A.V. Club. I love how their staffers creatively and intelligently discuss all manner of pop culture with little pretension, and I especially dig their weekly feature, the AVQ&A, "where we throw out a question for discussion among the staff and readers. Consider this a prompt to compare notes on your interface with pop culture, to reveal your embarrassing tastes and experiences, and to ponder how our diverse lives all led us to convene here together."

I'm a lurker, not a commenter. Still, since the Q&A began last September, I've routinely answered their questions in my mind, and considered exploiting 'em for my own blog fodder. So now's the time. Here are my responses to their first six inquiries...

9/12/08: What was the first album you bought with your own money? It was a soundtrack, either Saturday Night Fever or Grease, but both were Xmas gifts for my mom. The first album I bought just for myself -- a cassette -- was Foreigner's 4, mainly because "Urgent" was to me, well, urgent. I still dig that cover... As for singles, I bought Chic and Anita Ward disco discs as holiday presents for my big sisters, though the first 45 I got just for me was the Surfaris' "Wipe Out," which I bought at Payless and played over and over. I no longer own it, but it's a tune I still love.

9/18/08: What's your most-rewatched movie? All time? A tossup between Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Raising Arizona and The Big Lebowski. Recently, The Dark Knight.

9/25/08: What one book would you most like to make the rest of the world read? Evel Incarnate: The Life and Legend of Evel Knievel.

10/2/08: What canceled-before-its-time TV show do you miss the most? Chris Elliott's Get a Life, though that could easily be remedied by a DVD release of the complete 35-episode series.

10/9/08: What was your most embarrassing early celebrity crush? Farrah Fawcett. This cleavage-y 1977 magazine cover was entirely responsible. Boobs.

10/17/08: What is the best live music show you've ever been to? There's no one standout, but I've had great times at the many Girl Trouble and Mudhoney shows I've attended over the years, and I'll never forget the first time I saw the Replacements (in 1989), the Cramps and Sonic Youth (separately in 1990), the Rolling Stones (1994), and the Detroit Cobras (2002), among others.

10/23/08: What was your most disappointing concert experience? The Ramones, Seattle's Paramount Theater, 1990. Having played It's Alive and their other albums many times, and being plenty familiar with their well-documented shtick (the loud fast tunes, the 1-2-3-4s, the leather jackets and torn jeans, the pinhead, etc.), I pretty much predicted everything I wound up experiencing (except for spotting members of Girl Trouble in the first few rows)... Runner-up is the reunited Stooges show at Bumbershoot in 2005, as I felt I pretty much already saw the same show on the then-recent Live in Detroit DVD... I still love both bands, but at both concerts, my expectations were too high and the results were underwhelming.

10/30/08: What was your most memorable Halloween costume? The Ben Cooper Batman rig I rocked on Halloween '73. I continued wearing it for months afterwards, 'til it was in shreds.

To be continued, okay?

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Cool Logo, Boring Game

Right now I'm at the Canterbury watching the Seattle Sounders' first-ever game (yawn), only because I was hoping their TV would instead be showing tonight's Japan-Korea WBC game (sigh). I've always found soccer a bore, both as a spectator and a participant -- when I was in fifth grade, I played one season for Stoneway Concrete (fart). However, I dig the new Sounders logo and color scheme (which, incidentally, somewhat matches my blog's), though the old one for the 1974-83 NASL Sounders was kinda cool too:

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

We Hardly Knew Ye: Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Hearst finally pulled the plug.

Today marks the final print edition of the 146-year-old P-I, the oldest business in Seattle. With the passing of this, the less-conservative of our two dailies, Seattle is now a one-paper town. However, the P-I will continue as a news site, becoming the nation's largest daily to go fully digital.

But what about the P-I's fabulous neon globe? Can I have it?

Monday, March 16, 2009

Happy 50th, Flavor!

Mr. Flav hits the big five-oh today.

You want proof? Check his astrological chart.

Yeah boyee!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Now I've Seen Everything #8: HOV Dummies

My heart swells with regional pride over these specimens of NW DIY ingenuity. The above was nailed on Highway 167 in January 2008; below, busted this past Wednesday on I-405.

Perhaps not the most original idea in the world -- weaseling into the diamond lane with a homemade dummy riding shotgun -- but the results are nonetheless amusing.

Is this simply bucking the system? Or outsider art? You be the judge.

12/9/10 UPDATE

This guy, caught last month on Route 167, ain't even trying...

4/21/11 UPDATE

Another guy pulled over on Thursday in Kirkland...

Said the offending motorist to the WSP trooper, “Sir, I have no excuse.”

5/4/11 UPDATE

The WSP nabs a guy in Federal Way with an inflatable sex doll...

Thanks David!

1/5/12 UPDATE
Just after 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 20, a trooper stopped the driver of a silver Mazda for driving at 82 mph and making several unsafe lane changes on northbound Interstate 5 near 272nd Street, the State Patrol said. The trooper noticed that a “passenger” in the car was actually a plastic skeleton in a hooded sweatshirt. At least the skeleton was belted in. The driver was ticketed for speeding, unsafe lane changes and an HOV violation.

4/4/12 UPDATE

A tip o' the HOV Dummies cap to George Buford for this one...

The North Seattle Community College hoody is a nice touch.

10/24/13 UPDATE

Dummy-spotter extraordinaire George Buford strikes again, sharing this one posted today on NWCN's Facebook page...

The bad wig gave it away! WSP Trooper Mark Francis gave a carpool lane violator a ticket this morning near Everett, WA for having this dummy in his passenger seat. Apparently, the driver called her "Mr. Safety."

10/25/13 UPDATE

The Seattle P-I lists a bunch of recent Seattle-area HOV dummies, included many of the ones above -- link.

12/19/13 UPDATE

Buford once more, finding this one KING 5's Facebook page...

At least he's not a total dummy... this fake passenger wore a Seattle Seahawks hat. (However, the driver got a ticket for abusing the carpool lane.) Photo: WSP Trooper Chris Webb
2/13/14 UPDATE

Washington State Patrol Trooper Chris Webb tweeted the above photo, commenting: "Today, Trooper Nazariya stopped an HOV violator SB I-405/160th. The passenger was quiet and didn't move a lot..."


Thursday, March 12, 2009

More Cool Stuff Now!

Under Their Thumb, a new book by a guy who did the Rolling Stones fanzine Beggars Banquet from 1978 (when he was 16) 'til 1995...

...And the new Black Lips album.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

I Saw Watchmen...

...And chose not to use the obvious headline.

Top Ten Reasons Why Watchmen Ruled
1. Silk Spectre is smokin' hot.
2. Dr. Manhattan's monster blue horse cock(s).
3. Nite Owl's Owlship, especially when it ejaculates fire.
4. Jackie Earle Haley as Rorschach.
5. Jeffrey Dean Morgan as the Comedian.
6. Multiple "easter eggs" scattered throughout.
7. The overall '80s-noir look.
8. The fun of comparing 'n' contrasting the largely faithful film with its source material.
9. The fact that this movie adaptation ever got made in the first place.
10. Best of all, the opening backstory montage, the quality of which the rest of the film increasingly failed to maintain.

And Ten Reasons Why It Sucked
1. Silk Spectre can't act her way out of a diaper bag.
2. Too much screen time for Dr. Manhattan, whose blueness reminds me of Schwarzenegger's Mr. Freeze in the deplorable Batman & Robin.
3. The Nite Owl is too obvious a Batman ripoff (perhaps that's the point).
4. Ozymandias is too obvious a villain (perhaps even for those unfamiliar with the story).
5. The overwrought tunes, especially Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower" (performed by Hendrix), "The Times They Are A-Changin'" (performed by Dylan himself), and particularly "Desolation Row" (performed/butchered by My Chemical Romance).
6. The complete absence of the novel's cool comic-within-a-comic, Tales of the Black Freighter.
7. All the silly, unconvincing look-alikes: Warhol, Capote, Bowie, Kennedy, Annie Liebowitz, Lee Iaccoca, the McLaughlin Group panel, the Village People, Ted Koppel (I think), and Richard Nixon (and his monster horse schnozz).
8. No hoverbikes.
9. Occasionally subpar CGI, particularly on Bubastis, that dumb tiger dog thing.
10. The bogged-down Antarctic finale, which drags on far too long. Though the ending differs significantly from the novel's underwhelming climax, it's no improvement.

Overall, I dug the movie, and look forward to seeing it again (albeit months from now, on DVD). Granted, any such adaptation could hardly match the novel's complexity, and this ambitious attempt comes across as a mere, tip-of-the-iceberg primer. Still, eight stars.

Hey, check this out:

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Cool Stuff Now!

The Watchmen movie...

...And the WBC.

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