TheKey Chronicle

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Ballpoint Adventures mega-T
THE INKSTREME BALLPOINT
ADVENTURES

Monday, December 27, 1999

AND ANOTHER THING...

I HATE it when people ask me "What do you want for Christmas" or even my birthday for that matter - it bugs me - I'm the kind of guy who goes out and gets what he wants himself - I don't wait for some holiday to come along. What's even better than that is that I'd rather get nothing at all than something I only dreamed up and told you just to tell you something. Look, I know you mean well - and that's great, but save yourself some money and just get me a damn card! Really - unless you see something that screams at you, just don't bother. Well... unless you just want to send money. Or a gift certificate. I shop at Best Buy a lot. Too bad I didn't post an essay last week. STUPID! STUPID! STUPID!

AND A MERRY MOVIE TO ALL! (Did I really just type that???)

The only thing I actually LIKE about the Christmas holiday is that usually there are some fun films in theaters. This year seems to be no exception. Although I am writing this before the holiday begins (while goofing off at my desk at work) I know that I hope to run out and catch Galaxy Quest. Usually I don't like parodies that are this directed. I hated Space Balls and Robin Hood: Men in Tights they were just too specific and weren't random enough. I usually prefer parodies like Airplane! or Blazing Saddles that address a whole genre, but I think GQ looks to be an exception to my rule. I know I haven't seen it yet, but I watch the trailer and first off, it makes me laugh, and secondly, it looks like the writer(s) actually took the world of Star Trek seriously and just tried to make jokes within that universe. Boy - I wish that the boys over at the Star Trek: Next Generation, Deep Space Nine & Voyager had thought about lightening things up a bit where characters say "oops" and try the old tried and true cliches, only to have them not work. So, I am making a prediction here - this will be a fun film that I will enjoy. So, if you want to see a film that I will enjoy (or possibly prove me wrong - yeah RIGHT!) then go catch Galaxy Quest.

Or would you rather watch "It's a Wonderful Life" - AGAIN?

PS: My girlfriend and I just got back from Galaxy Quest and boy was I RIGHT! It was more fun and fulfilling than the last THREE Trek movies put together!

HOLIDAYS SHMOLIDAYS

I've bitched about holidays before, but since they keep coming, I'm going to keep whining. So here's this year's complaint. I have a busy life. I always thought that holidays were times when you could take off from work, get paid and actually do what YOU wanted to do. Well, for the fun Christian holiday that I am taking part in, I not only must do what society tells me to do, but I must lose time I would normally spend making money just so I can make these preparations!! I mean, come on - is this gift giving thing that big of a deal? No one realizes that all the time I must take to get presents, wrap them and so on, I actually lose time working. So, less working means less money, less money, means fewer PRESENTS!! Think about THAT for a minute!!

Monday, December 6, 1999

WHAT'S WITH THE BIG DIAMOND PUSH???

Now, maybe it's just me - but I feel like with the next millennium coming up (or so we misunderstand), diamond marketers are putting a HUGE push on these things. I've never understood why women are supposed to like diamonds. Is it because they're stupid and are attracted to pretty, shiny things? I've always felt women (certainly compared to men) were fairly practical people, but this odd love of pretty shiny things puzzles me. I know that our society programs women to like Barbie dolls, dresses, flowers, make-up and jewelry, but it's almost the 21st century!! Why haven't these women woken up?!? How practical is a pair of diamond earrings? Oh, sure, she may look great in them at a dinner party, but how many average women go to dinner parties? And of those dinner parties, how many are ritzy enough for the attendees to wear diamond earrings?? Sheesh - Oh yeah - women are practical alright.

NEVER A LACK OF MATERIAL WITH CABLE TV

Boy you know, I may run out of time to work on my site, but I never run out of things to bitch about. If I ever think, "gosh, what shall I complain about this week?" all I need to do is turn on the Television and start surfing. Usually I find something pretty offensive on E! Entertainment Television. I do admit that I enjoy Talk Soup and the occasional episode of The E Hollywood True Story. Mostly because both shows point out how truly messed up Hollywood is in one way or another. But the shows that I only see promos for (because that's all I can TAKE) seem to EMBRACE this insane industry. Take E's Fashion Emergency hosted by Emmy (no relation to the Award - as far as I know). Now first off, Emmy is best known, before hosting this show, for being what is called a "full figured model". (Or as I call them, a not-so-fat-hot-chick.) So, there she is, hosting this show that helps people who need help dressing "hip" or "cool". Doesn't that seem a bit hypocritical? I mean, here is this heavy chick who sets a great example for other heavy chicks around the country showing America that one doesn't have to be a freaking TWIG to be a hottie, but THEN she turns around and tells that very same America that they have to dress a certain way to look "hip" and "cool". And that isn't hip or cool - it's just LAME. So, THANKS cable TV for making the sucky things in life easier to make fun of!

FENG SHUI? I GOT YER FENG!

What a total crock this is - Feng Shui is this Asian deal where you arrange your home and the stuff you keep in it to maximize the home's "energy". YEAH. I'm sure - and what "energy" is this? OH - FENG SHUI ENERGY! Of COURSE!! Um, can you please show me exactly what physics book mentions Feng Shui Energy please? When you can, or do - THEN I'LL FRIGGIN' WASTE MY TIME ARRANGING MY COUCH SO IT'LL HELP KEEP ME HEALTHY!!

Sunday, November 28, 1999

PITNEY BLOWS PART II

MAN!!! I am going to think MORE than twice the next time I toy with the idea of signing up to beta test a company's software. You may remember a few Bitch Pages ago (HERE!) I went on about how Pitney Bowes, after promising me $25 in free postage, ended up stealing $100 from me via my check card. Well, to be fair, they finally did give me back my money AND let me keep the $100 of postage, their postage meter software erroneously added, which was just about worth the trouble all told. However, their software is so far from being ready for the public it makes Windows 98 look like a well thought out masterpiece.

First off, it demands a screen name and password EVERY time you open the app. It does have a "remember password" check box, but it doesn't work in the beta version. Then, once you type out your destination and return addresses on the virtual envelope, the app proceeds to simply not print the first five characters of the return address. To get around this problem, I inserted spaces in front of my return address. It printed properly then, although it had a problem with the destination address. After printing I get a warning message that reads something to the effect of: "Destination address invalid."

That's all it says.

Does that mean the zip code is wrong? Or does it mean that the software was somehow able to look up the address in some massive database Pitney Bowes has at their server only to not find it? Or, does it simply mean the application is screwed up in some way? I have no idea.

Now, don't you worry--I understand that as a beta tester I am supposed to report these little bugs and I intend to, but doesn't this seem a bit extreme? Shouldn't most of an application's major bugs be WORKED OUT BY THE TIME AVERAGE FOLKS ARE ASKED TO TRY THE DAMN THING OUT?!?!

To top that all off, Pitney Bowes marketing department keeps getting their phone lists late. When I first signed up for beta testing, I got a phone call a couple days later from them asking me to download their software and try it out. Now, why would I NOT do this right away? Why wait? I'm at their site, why should I come back later to DL the app? In fact, I DID ALREADY download it. So, I ignored the phone message. Then, I got another and then another! Finally, they stopped calling. Or so I thought.

About a month later, I got a call asking me to print out a test envelope and send it into Pitney Blows. This was ANOTHER useless call seeing as the APPLICATION MADE ME DO IT BEFORE I PRINTED OUT MY OWN FIRST ENVELOPE!!! So, once again, I ignored the phone message. Then I got ANOTHER call requesting the same damn thing!! I then called up Pitney Bowes and demanded they NEVER CALL ME AGAIN. Which they agreed to do. It seems they have a no-more-calls list. It's nice to know I'm not the only one putting up with their crap.

DEFENDER OF THE GATES

I'M certainly not a defender of Bill Gates, but I bumped into a couple of people who are, at least slightly. On the way back from my girlfriend's parents' house for Thanksgiving, I was finishing up the book The Plot To Get Bill Gates. A woman I had never met before noticed the title of the book and started talking to me. She explained that she had heard Gates' name come up in conversation quite a bit lately and realized that she knew little or nothing about the guy. She went on to ask if I could tell her what I know about him.

Now, the first thing I did was issue her a disclaimer. I am the LAST person you are going to get a POSITIVELY slanted bio on Bill Gates from. She seemed to understand, so I began. Firstly, Bill Gates is NOT about money--you might think that a man who is worth around $92 billion would be all about getting more money--he isn't. It's all about winning and crushing his opponents. If you are direct competition, he either buys your company or crushes you into oblivion or sometimes both. Like how he dealt with Netscape. Now, Gates has said that he and Microsoft were an innovators. I beg to differ. In last week's Bitch Page (HERE!), I talked about how Gates had appropriated an idea from a competitor. Well, this is a better example. Netscape's co-founder is a guy named Marc Andreesen. When he was in college, he created a browser for the Web. He did so taking advantage of his college's facilities and as a result, they owned the browser he had created. When Andreesen had decided to go into business selling that browser, he couldn't unless he paid his college for the rights. He didn't, he figured it would be easier to simply write himself a new browser. Which he did do. This was the basis for the original Netscape browser. Now, Microsloth comes along and says "Hey! We want in on the internet, but we've got no browser!"

What do they do? THEY buy up the original source code from Andreesen's college and use it for the basis of Microsoft's browser. Innovation? (Or not.) But that wasn't all Gates did--he and his company then went on to give their browser away free! Now, you may think--hey that's only GOOD for the consumer, why should that be wrong?

It's wrong because of this: Microsoft can afford to give away a browser for free--it has LOADS of money from selling operating systems. However, the company that creates the competing software can not afford to give away their browser for free because they don't have some cash cow that will cover their financial butts. Gates deliberately had his company do something that would obviously cripple the competition. What happened? Netscape's sales went way down, forcing them to give away their browser for free as well. The company lost billions of dollars and barely hangs on even today.

Perhaps you're thinking, so what? The average consumer now has a choice--two browsers for free, that's great! Well, it isn't--Netscape almost vanished from the browser landscape--luckily they thought fast and came up with their successful portal (a place on the web to get all your news, web searches, etc, in one place) and they were able to save themselves from the brink. Gates and Microsoft almost succeeded in removing the competition completely and that would have removed a choice from the consumer. NOT good. It's bad enough we only have two browsers to choose from (and a couple more if we want to pay). So basically, Bill Gates is a shark who's only intent is to devour the competition and thusly make more money. He gives away next to NONE of his money to charity and CONTINUES to deliver crappy software to the public with more bugs in it than an ant farm.

So, as I'm explaining the whole thing to this woman on the plane, another passenger interrupts explaining that Bill Gates HAS to give a certain amount (he theorized 5%) of his total income every year to charity. Then, another Defender of The Gates jumped in adding that just recently Gates had established a scholarship. To this I say: FIVE PERCENT??? A SCHOLARSHIP?? CURE CANCER MORON!!! YOU'RE WORTH $92 BILLION!!! That's 92,000 MILLION DOLLARS!!!! HELLO!!! BILL GATES COULD DONATE HALF OF HIS TOTAL WORTH AND STILL BE ONE OF THE RICHEST MEN ON EARTH!!! Don't believe me? Go HERE and see for yourself.

Scholarship, my ass...

HOLY SWORD-WEILDING NAKED MAN!

While this doesn't fall directly under the heading of a bitch, the articles linked below sure do apply to the "WHAT'S THE WORLD COMING TO?" category of bitching. Be sure to come back and post on the Ventilation Page your thoughts of this truly bizarre event!

First read this! (dead link)

Then read this!

Wednesday, November 17, 1999

I HATE RANDY NEWMAN!

Well, really I don't hate Randy Newman. I just hate his damn song I Love LA I mean - does this guy actually know what the rest of the world is like?

If so, LOS ANGELES is his idea of greatness??

I've lived in the over-called "City of Angels" for over five years now. While there are more beautiful people here than in any city I've ever lived in before, that's about the only good thing I can think of. Oh well - the beautiful people AND the coolest movie theaters in the country, but that's really it. Overall, it's one of the most boring places to live.

Sure there are clubs - but they all feel the same after the first few.

Sure there are restaurants, but who can afford to eat out enough to not get bored?

And the weather? DAMN - more like - WHAT weather? I know CONSTANT rain sucks, but then, so does CONSTANT sun. Rain is GOOD - it cleans the smog out of the air and gives us all free car washes. Plus it's DIFFERENT. People talk about how they just LOVE sunny weather - I am so BORED by it. I have to wear sunglasses EVERY damn day out here. I get to where my motorcycle jacket all of three months a year - I LOVE MY MOTORCYCLE JACKET!!

Another good thing about rain is that if there's more rain, Angelino Drivers (morons that they are), would learn how to be better drivers in the rain and therefore there would be less traffic accidents. Also, back east, when the weather was crappy over the winter, I remember how great it was when the first warm day hit. It was great - we'd go out and play Frisbee and where short sleeves - it was great.

You really appreciated nice weather when it was around on the East Coast, but here? I have no reason to rush to the beach when it'll still be there next week. You think LA has some great nightlife? Not past 2am or so. LA practically closes up shop after midnight and only the hottest clubs stay open until two in the morning. If you want to stay out later its time for Denny's or one of the few IHOPs that stays open 24 hours. Aside from that, there is very little in LA to enjoy in a recreational sense.

In the end, it's just a city like any other. You can do the touristy stuff, but after that, zip. I'm bored by LA.

BILL GATES RETURNS AS... THE APPROPRIATOR!

In the book The Plot To Get Bill Gates there is a chapter that delves into a machine called a "Network Computer". Larry Ellison, the guy who ran Oracle for a bunch of years wasn't using that phrase to describe a computer that was networked to other computers in an office, or even in a home. He had an idea that people could buy a machine that would have a minimal amount of software on it - basically just enough to run the modem and some sort of dial up application. Once you got that machine home you would plug your phone line to it and dial up a server that contained all of your actual applications.

You wouldn't buy software, you would simply use the application on that remote server and save your documents on the remote server, thus removing any need to buy a hot machine and save yourself a wad of cash. Sure, there are privacy issues regarding storing your private documents on someone else's server (these issues could easily be addressed with basic encryptions) but the service would allow us, the average folks, to use the best applications for a small amount of money a month in exchange for shelling out big bucks for a crazy fast and expensive desktop machine. Effectively, this would be like a subscription to TV Guide or your local cable company. Internet Service Providers could even include it with their existing services.

Ellison suggested this years ago and tried to make it happen, but it never did happen. Most likely because of his insistence that people buy these new "Network Computers" to use the service - what he should have suggested was a service that could be used with a regular PC or Mac.

Now, I'm not suggesting that this is a good service and that we all should get behind such a thing. All I am saying is that Ellison had this service in mind years ago. What happens on November 8, 1999? Bill Gates unveils his newest service - a service where you can access the latest version of Microsoft Office on a remote server. No software or software upgrades required. Sheesh. That'll teach Larry Ellison and anyone else to open their mouths about a good idea - without making sure they had it finished first. Moron.

ALAS POOR ATARI, I KNEW HIM WELL... AGAIN

Are you my age?

Are you older?

If you answered yes to either of these questions, then you probably remember the FIRST time video games were big. It was the late seventies and the only thing I wanted for Christmas as an 8 year-old was the newest version of this little machine that my Dad would hook up to the family's TV set. The machine as I recall ran on batteries and allowed me to play one of five games. Pong, two-player Pong, Squash and two-player Squash and something else I don't recall. The graphics were very simple - just small rectangles batting about a small square. The rectangles were controlled by small dials on the machine itself and you could play the five games by adjusting a slider.

Now, mind you, these memories are about 20 years old, so they may not be entirely accurate. One memory I KNOW was accurate is the memory of just how much FUN I had playing those simple little games. Then, when word came around that the company was releasing a new machine I was ecstatic. It was to be called the Atari Video Game System, or, the Atari VCS. It was, as far as I know, the first of it's kind.

It could run an infinite number of games thanks to a cartridge system. One game (sometimes more) per cartridge. Of course, the cartridges at the time ran in excess of thirty dollars. Twenty years later, the games cost a little more and they come on CDs instead of cartridges. Of course the games have changed as well - a slew of tiny aliens moving monotonously back and forth slowly creeping downward while you try to blow them away has turned into an all too realistic, sex pot in a tank top and khakis running around tombs.

Games aren't games anymore - they're insane challenges that actually make you believe that movies like The Matrix are not that unbelievable. This is why I prefer the simpler games of years past. I'd much rather zip a little yellow creature around a maze while trying to gobble up as many little pellets as I can. Thanks to many people around the United States (and even some elsewhere) I can enjoy my favorite kind of games again.

Thanks to the wonderful world of online auctions I am able to get in touch with many people who are willing to sell their ORIGINAL Atari 2600 consoles only to be outbid by people more passionate for their childhood memories than me. SHEESH!

PS Buy your own Atari 2600 at bloatedmonkey.com for $50!
OR check out all of the Atari stuff for auction at Ebay and Amazon!

Sunday, November 7, 1999

HOW MUCH ARE YOU GOING AFTER?

Recently a man in a major American city was trapped in an high-rise elevator for over 40 hours. He then decided to sue the owners of the building. Now, I'm all for compensation for moronic behavior - if I was in the situation, I'd sue, also. But this guy sued for $25 million!!

Isn't that a little insane?

It's not like he missed work or anything - he was trapped in there over a weekend. Again - I can TOTALLY see suing them, but that much seems a bit insane. Why take that much advantage of the situation? Why even TRY to get that much from the company?

Sure, you were severely inconvenienced, but give me a BREAK - you're still in one piece, right? Is the inside of an elevator THAT traumatic? If it had dropped a few floors - I could see it then - but NOTHING bad happened to the guy, physically, and if he can't handle being stuck in a small room for a couple of days he really needs to get a life. But I digress.

It seems like these days people are always out for more. At my dayjob, I book screenings for all kinds of movies - big movies, little movies, medium size movies. And almost EVERYONE I speak with wants a price break. GOD FORBID you should pay what something is WORTH. If we were a union house, we'd have to charge even more. So, DEAL.

It seems like some one is always out to get money from another person. Lately, it seems like it's been ME. Recently, I bought a laptop computer. I thought I had found a very good price - 366mhz, 32mbs RAM, 4gbs hard disk all for $800. A great deal, right? Not quite - the price is actually $1200, but if I agree to sign up for THREE YEARS of Prodigy Internet Service, I get $400 off. So, what do I do? I'm desperate for a laptop. I'm never home enough to do all the writing I like to do and the website was falling behind, so I did it.

Prodigy is an okay service, but I do get busy signals too often as well as corrupt connections. Even though I am very happy with my laptop I wonder why they couldn't have just charged me $800 flat. Then there's my cell phone. For $20 a month I get a phone, 20 minutes of free air and unlimited weekend calls, AND a requirement that I sign on for a year. What if I decide I don't like it? What if I just don't use the phone enough? TOUGH - I am stuck for a year's worth of $20 payments.

Why can't they just be reasonable and let me cancel when and if I want? What's worse is that my credit is so bad they need a $1000 deposit just to allow me to sign up. What's THAT about? I wouldn't run up that much over the span of two years let alone one.

Then we have one of the myriad mini-dish television systems. I heard an ad on the radio recently that said the mini-dish itself was FREE (with qualified programming). This means that I probably have to spend more than my regular cable bill on many channels that I don't even want. The radio then went on to advise me that after getting the system I shouldn't ingest more than 200 channels at a time and that I should program only my favorites.

While the selling technique is cute (but amazingly trite), I can't help but think if there was only a way I could pay for only the channels I watch things would be much easier for me. Of course, you know that if they did offer a pay-per-channel system, they couldn't charge as much over all.

We all seem to be out to get more money from each other than maybe we should. Where does the line fall between greed and intelligence? Is Bill Gates worthy of praise because he is the richest man on the planet? Or should we curse him for charging $80 for an operating system when it costs less than $2 to produce a single CD-ROM? Is it okay to compromise your morals if it means you get to have lots of money? I like to think not, but our society has other ideas.

WHY DO TRAILERS SUCK?

Is it me? Or have movie trailers (or previews) gotten progressively worse over the past ten years.

Sure, there are the trailers that are really awesome (Dark City, Iron Giant, Matrix, to name a few) but for the most part all trailers seem to be cut from the same mold - every single one of them.

If it's a wacky comedy, it's just random wackiness. The trailer people don't even try to explain how the movie is good or what the actual story is, just the basic premise and every joke they can throw at us.

If it's a drama the film is advertising, the trailer will start off light... "Jim Bowden was a normal high school kid..." They show images of him in school, with friends, etc. But then it begins to get dark - suddenly the voice over guy gets serious... "But then he discovered... there was a Nazi living in his quiet little neighborhood." Then we see a rapid succession of shots on the kid as he is doing things, running, hiding, etc, (while we hear a heavy drum beat in the background) until the final shot where the lead kid has some sort of weapon that he hurls at the camera and then we cut to black. The title fades up and then out.

The trailer for the colossal flop 8mm LITERALLY gave me a headache. Sleepy Hollow's trailer made me wonder if epileptics around the world would have fits while watching the trailer. And what's with Danny Elfman's marching band music during all of the action scenes? Is that a sword in the Headless Horseman's hand, or a baton?!?!

It's gone beyond the clicheness of showing the climax of a movie in the trailer - trailers these days show every important plot point and the big ending! Sometimes they show everything out of order, but a mildly educated mind can piece them all together in the right order. I just don't get it - the frustrating thing is - most of America goes to see the movies that these trailers are cut for, so the moron-ad-guys think that they're doing a good job!

I almost didn't see Fight Club because the trailer made it look like a different film entirely and if the trailer to The Sixth Sense had told the truth about it's movie, I probably wouldn't have seen it. Sure, it got me in the theater, but I was really annoyed that I had been lied to. I also hated the movie, too.

Why can't trailers be cut in a way that simply and clearly advertises the movie? Hey - you've heard of that recent flop Body Shots? It's a movie about date rape. Bet you didn't know know THAT from the trailer...

Y2K? YSHOULDICARE?

It's amazing all this Y2K crap that's going on.

Everyone is paranoid about what might happen on or around January 1, 2000.

My girlfriend's sister advised us to avoid any sort of plane travel within two days on either side of the DATE.

I asked her why - it's not like at the crack of midnight the plane we're on will just drop out of the air, right? She suggested that something tiny would go wrong and then thanks to a chain reaction the plane would somehow crash.

As though Fate itself heard her words, I just happened to book my girlfriend and I on a redeye flight from LA to New York that gets into New York on December 31st.

I venture to guess that we'll be fine. In fact that's my point over all for this bitch in particular. (I am referring to this body of writing, not my girlfriend's sister!) I don't think anything is going to happen.

At all.

Y2K will come and go - and at least in America, and most other developed countries, we'll all be fine. Maybe a few computers might flake, but even fewer or no lives will be lost because of the evil Millennium Bug. All this stuff on TV and the newspapers is just some media fad - we don't have anything else to be concerned with, Monica has moved on, Bosnia has moved on, hell - even OJ has moved on for crying out loud!

SO, ENOUGH with this Y2K crap - it's NOTHING.

Oh and as for terrorists pulling anything funny on New Years Eve in Times Square? As if. New York City Mayor Rudy "Big Brother" Juliani, runs the city like a police state. As the natives say - fuggetaboutit. We'll all be fine. SO GET OVER IT!

Sunday, October 31, 1999

WHAT EXACTLY IS WRONG WITH SPACE?

Is it just me, or is the Planet Earth covered with scaredy cats?

It's also covered with way too many of them and thanks to global warming and rapidly advancing medicine, our population will go from being an "oh really?" kind of topic to an "oh crap!" kind of topic.

Think about it, the human population is constantly growing.

Granted, people die every day - even every minute - but even when people die every minute, that's not fast enough for the planet Earth's sake. Not only are humans, as a race, using up more resources (food and fuel) but thanks to global warning, we'll be using up the LAND a lot faster in the coming century as well.

As I mentioned, medicine is making leaps forward and I think it's safe to suggest that by the end of the new century, many of us will be around to see it. So, what will the world look like in 100 years?

Less land, less food, less fuel, more people.

Hm, you THINK we should think about, oh, I don't know - LEAVING THE PLANET EARTH SOMETIME SOON?!?!

Did you know that the Space Shuttle Endeavour cost NASA $1.7 billion? Now, we should look at the richest man on the planet. His name is Bill Gates. This is the man who is said to have immense vision - yet even he doesn't realize that with his worth of over $70 billion, he could build the first vacation spots in space and STILL have over HALF HIS FORTUNE LEFT OVER. He could have five space shuttles built, and then fund his own space station. Hell - he could claim Mars for himself. But does he?

No.

Why?

Cuz he's a friggin' idiot. I've heard that computer industry people ponder a thirty second elevator ride with Bill Gates the way average folks ponder winning the lottery. They fantasize about what software package they would pitch to him - or perhaps they would simply ask him for his autograph. I, on the other hand, would ask him why he hasn't done anything about space. I mean, it's not like he'd be all poor if he built a space station and nobody went. I'd sure go though - assuming it wasn't run by Windows 1998.

"Would you like to disconnect from you air supply?" It would no doubt ask as it is right now asking me if I'd like to disconnect from my internet connection despite that I have been researching on the web just now for this here essay. But I digress.

Why not space? Why are we sending machines up there when it's plain to even big, dumb morons that a HUMAN up there would be MUCH more valuable. See, that's the real problem with people these days. We don't want to do anything for ourselves. We make machines do everything for us. Why should space travel be any different?

Well, did Lewis and Clark let a horse explore the untamed west by itself?

No. Of course not. So why should we let a glamorized desktop computer fly to Mars only to realize too late that the guys at the Jet Propultion Labs forgot to switch to metric? Let's go. Let's go now.

THE BEST MOVIE OF THE YEAR

[asin: B000066744]
Think millennium fever has gone too far?

Check this movie out - it has almost NOTHING to do with the millennium. And what little it does have to do with the millennium is only observed by people drawing the connection in their minds.

ANYWAY, here's the deal: The Legend of 1900 is easily the BEST movie of the year. Directed by the same guy who directed Cinema Paradisio, The Legend of 1900 follows a trumpet player's attempts to reach his best friend named 1900.

The trumpet player, Max Tuney, played VERY well by Pruitt Taylor Vince (the stilt killer on that X-Files episode a couple years back), tells the people he bumps into of the adventures he and 1900 would have playing music on board the Virginian, a cruise ship that 1900 was born on, raised and had never left.

This movie has almost everything Cinema Paradisio had - magic, love, tragedy, humor, joy, a great script a great story and GREAT performances by Vince and Tim Roth who plays 1900 with an amazing level of innocent adventurousness. The movie, in short, is quite brilliant. See it and you'll be glad you did.

I GOT YER FREE STAMPS!!

Here's how it went:

I got the setup program from Pitney Bowes' web site and tried to install it, mostly because I wanted to get the free $25 in postage the company promises to the people who beta test their new internet postage stamp printing software (it allows you to print stamps right off of your printer). THIS is where the simplicity ended.

Sure, it SOUNDED simple enough, but what happened was not worth the free twenty five bucks in postage, I'll tell ya that much for free! Anyway, so I go to install the setup application. It starts out fine but then halfway through, my machine locks up. Now, I know the instructions said I need to shut down every other application I have running in order to properly install the postage program, but EVERY setup program tells you to do that and I never do, so why should THIS application be any different?

So, I turn off the machine and wait 30 seconds (because hitting control-alt-delete didn't work) and then turn the machine back on. I try installing again and everything seems fine. I enter all my info, including my credit card number for when I run out of the first (free) $25 in postage. A LOT of sites ask for your credit card info whether they need it or not these days and if you don't like it, don't do it. But, since I was used to it, I gave out the number. I was pretty sure if they wanted to keep doing business with me, they wouldn't dare mess with my card.

So, now it was time to download the free $25 in postage from the Pitney Blows - I mean Pitney Bowes web site and start printing postage right from my printer. Right? Almost. So I tell the app(lication) to connect with the Pitney Bowes web site and half way through the process I get an error message. It seems as though there was some problem connecting.

Hm.

Well, let's try it again.

Same problem. Damn.

Well, one more time.

NOPE! Still no clean connection.

I try it one more time and finally I get through and my postage printing program is ready to go. Where's the catch you ask? I'm glad you asked.

Two days later, I get this odd call on my answering machine at home. It's a guy from Pitney Bowes wanting to talk to me about the beta testing, but alas, I got the message too late in the day - they've closed already. I'll just call them on Monday.

SATURDAY MORNING AT 9:30 AM, I get a call - I let my machine get it. It's someone else from Spitney Bowes - I mean Pitney Blows - I mean - Pitney Bowes only this time she wants me to make sure that I download their postage app because there are a limited number of slots available for beta testers. But... I already downloaded the app TWO DAYS AGO.

A few hours later, I am doing a routine checking of my finances by visiting wellsfargo.com when I discover Pitney "ha-ha, we've got the sap's credit card now!" Bowes has charged my $25 FOUR TIMES.

That's $100 they have charged me WITHOUT MY AUTHORIZATION.

I almost want to call the cops - I mean, it IS theft. Just because you give the neighbors a key to your home doesn't give them permission to come in and take whatever they want, right? Well, I tried to call them on Sunday only to discover that they're not open on weekends. WELL THEN HOW THE HELL DID SOMEONE CALL ME BEFORE 10AM ON A FRIGGING SATURDAY?!?

Here's a tip - just say NO to Pitney Bowes.

Sunday, October 17, 1999

CARS ARE THE REAL DANGER

Almost everyday in the news we hear about things that kill people - drugs, guns, violence on TV, etc. One thing that gets attention as a killer is the car accident. But no one really thinks about how DANGEROUS cars really are.

EVERY NIGHT here in LA you can hear about no fewer than six car accidents on the news. Drunk driving, hit-and-run and plain old reckless driving are all common culprits here in Los Angeles as they are around the world. It's to the point that I don't even like to drive if I don't have to.

I used to LOVE driving. But every morning on the way to work I hear about the latest SLEW of people who crashed their cars that morning. Two car pile-up on the 10 freeway, or a three car, fatal accident on the 405. God - that could be any one of you or me, or someone else we care about and yet, we go out their on the roads every day, fearlessly (stupidly) taking our lives into our own hands - no worse - into each OTHERS' hands.

Do YOU trust the guy in the next car over from you to NOT be an incompetent moron?

I don't.

PRAISE MASS TRANSIT! USE THE SUBWAY. Oh and don't get me started on the fact that smog sends 53,000 people to the hospital each summer in the United States alone.

CLASSIC TREK CGI'ED??? WHY?!?

As you may know from the rest of the web site, I, ThePete, used to be a big Star Trek fan. I still am a fan of the Classic episodes as well as many of the Next Generation episodes, too. But when I heard that they were using computers to redo the special effects on an episode or two of the Classic Trek, I was tentative about it, at best. But, a friend of mine mentioned that there was a site that had some of the images online from the new footage, I decided that it was worth a look.

Now, you may be wondering why I am not posting a link to there site, so you can take a look for yourself. Well, I must say that the computer effects so GREATLY changed certain things that I feel that I should not help advertise the site built by the people who feel that reinventing something to make it new and fun is a good thing to do.

The images I saw were from the Classic Trek episode entitled "The Doomsday Machine". You may remember it as the episode that features a giant planet eating rock-worm that goes around gobbling up just about anything in it's path. Now, the original looked like it was carved out of rock. It had three segments, as though it's tail telescoped out of it's body. It had a very cool, (and yes, a bit cheap) look. It wasn't all that scary, but boy did it look ALIEN. MAN did it look like NOTHING like anything a HUMAN made.

Now, we look at the "new" images of the new Doomsday Machine is sleak and smooth edged. It's no longer segmented or even rocky looking. It's grey and looks more like VERY man-made - in fact, it looks an awful lot like part of the Enterprise that Picard captained. Just slap a saucer section on top and some warp nacelles on the side and BOOM - it's the Enterprise D. How lame is THAT? I mean - why "remake" the damn thing if you're going to CHANGE everything so DRASTICALLY, it's UNRECOGNIZABLE???

Why not just do a whole new show? Stop recycling the old crap and MAKE NEW STUFF THAT'S GOOD!! Ugh - I swore off of most Trek almost two years ago - this isn't making me want to go back at ALL.

EVOLUTION NOT SCHOOL-WORTHY?

Yep - apparently, it's not - apparently in Kentucky they feel that the theory of evolution should not be taught in schools.

They feel it conflicts with the teachings of the lord. What is THAT??

Since WHEN does teaching a theory conflict with what some people believe as fact?

IT'S A THEORY YOU MORONS!!

Good GOD - I cannot believe this is actually happening someplace in America! This is a case of pure misinformation. They play it as though this theory is not a major concept - it may not be the truth, but it IS a reasonable theory - JUST as the Christian explanation is (to some people).

Removing the theory of evolution from the curriculum only acknowledges that the state of Kentucky believes this theory is a threat to their concept of truth. If their concept is the truth - then why be afraid of some theory?

Why?

Simple - what if the Christians all start believing that the theory of evolution is in fact the truth? Well, then, if that makes them happy to believe a new truth, shouldn't that be okay? It's just a chance the Christians should have to take - I mean, isn't Christianity at least in part about resisting temptation? Then again, I guess it's easier to resist temptation if you're not exposed to it.

Sunday, October 10, 1999

MY HUMBLE APOLOGIES

I would like to humbly apologize to visitors of this site. Things have been pretty hectic over the past couple of months (try SIX months). Between my two jobs, my writing and life in general, I have been JUST BARELY able to keep the regular site updates coming, but last week, this much didn't even happen.

The comic strips were late, the new Bitch Page didn't show up until four days after it should have and then there were all of the general things I still hadn't gotten to after the switch from Spinninghead.com to ThePete.com - but now, I have updated most of the site. Things are back up and running. This includes EVERYTHING here at the Bitch Page. The Bitch List is back up - you can now sign up for it here or simply send an email to bitch@thepete.com either way, you'll be able to whine, moan and bitch to your heart's content, 24-7!! Also, the BitchCards work again!! Now you can send rude, yet strangely sweet web cards to friends or enemies on the internet!

I've also added some new downloadables to the Bitch Fun Page - want to play classic arcade games on your PC? Click here to find out more! And for next week I hope to bring the Ventilation Page to my server for faster service. Well, I realize this hasn't been much of a jibe - I just wanted to apologize for not getting as much done as I thought I'd be able to.

I'M SO ASHAMED!!!

But not ashamed enough to NOT plug the rest of the site too! Please click on the spinning head at the top of this page to explore all the new things here at thepete.com!! (New comic strip home pages, a new guestbook format with a new feedback section and here's the best bit - go download your very own ThePete.com brand screensaver - new from ThePeteWare right now at TheMall at ThePete.com!! WOOHOO!)

WHO TOLD HARLIN HE HAD ABILITY, TALENT, OR A RIGHT TO HAVE A CAREER?

Fox just ordered a half-hour pilot from Deep Blue Sea, Long Kiss Goodnight" and Cutthroat Island director Renny Harlin, called "T.R.A.X." which stands for Trace, Research, Analyze and Exterminate.

It's a show about a special branch of the police that traces, researches, analyzes and exterminates the supernatural, the occult and the etc. Gee, Renny Harlin does the X-Files - what is Fox thinking???

Just fire Chris Carter and hire Harlin. Not that he would make a decent show - I mean, I'd sooner give a pilot order to Glen A. Larson and HE created Knight Rider for crying out loud!! Harlin has made some of the worst movies EVER!

AM I the only one who has noticed this???

MARS - NOW, WATER-FREE!

Well, NOW NASA is saying that there was NEVER any water on Mars.

First they said there used to be water on Mars, thanks to the appearance of of channels that look as though they were made by flowing water - there were even things that looked like coastlines.

But NOW they're saying that what were coastlines are nothing of the sort.

NOW they say that the coastlines were probably not caused by water at all.

I have a question for NASA. Why don't we just send a GUY up there to LOOK at these features with his own EYES. That way, we wouldn't have to worry about camera resolution or arguing scientists, we could just have an expert ACTUALLY GO UP TO MARS AND LOOK FOR HIM OR HERSELF. I think a REAL HUMAN UP THERE IN PERSON might settle any debate, don't you?

Wednesday, October 6, 1999

INFOMERCIALS - MY ASS!

Don DuPre is evil.

He's not Satan or anything, but he IS a major demon. You may have seen this guy on late night cable. He's the one who encourages you to make lots of money placing ads in newspapers around the country. Never mind the fact that he never says exactly what you'll be advertising in these ads and never mind the fact that he circles around exactly how you are supposed to make money with his plan, it's the enthusiasm in which he enlightens you that is truly sinister.

He's mesmerizing, this guy. He just talks and talks and manages to say very little about exactly what you're dropping your cash for. Here's a warning - if you see this dude chatting it up on the tube - keep on surfing - if it's late enough and you're tired enough, you just might fall for his line.

Be afraid... be VERY afraid...

IT'S NOT THAT AMERICAN BEAUTY IS BRILLIANT...

It's not that American Beauty is brilliant, but compared to the regular dreck that Hollywood churns out, let's just say that it is NOT a film to miss.

So, go see it if you're over 17 and witness a good script, great performances a cute teenage blonde topless and Kevin Spacey masturbating in the shower.

Oh yeah and Warren Beatty's wife cries, open-mouthed in a close-up. YEESH! But don't let that discourage you - check it out!

HEY AT&T - BITE ME!

Recently, my girlfriend noticed a few new charges on our phone bill.

I took a look at it and discovered that there were two new charges - one for $4.35 and another for $1.35. AT&T was kind enough to include an 800 number to call, should we actually want to know what we were being charged for - now, this 800 number was not the standard customer service line, this was an 800 number specifically designed for these two new charges.

Now, first I'll tell you about the cheaper charge. It seems as though the FCC has demanded that all long distance companies pony up a small amount of money to help pay for poor people to have phone service and internet access. It also seems that AT&T can't be charitable on their own, so they pass that donation on to their customers - now, it may not seem that $1.35 is that much money, but I was never asked or even consulted on this new charge - I frankly don't care about poor people getting a phone line anymore than they care about me having one. Why can't AT&T deal with this on their own? Why try to pass the cost on to us quietly with only an 800 number on the bill?

Because they are immoral bastards - that's why.

If that's not enough for you, let's explore that fun $4.35 charge. This is even better. It turns out that local phone companies across the country are charging LD Companies more to provide the services LD Companies provide. Does AT&T eat this cost? NO. WE do. The customers. Whatever happened to "The customer comes first?"

If I could survive without a long distance service, I would sever all contact with them, but alas, they are the best LD company in America.

Sunday, September 26, 1999

YEAH SURE DAN, IT'S CUZ OF THE MONEY

Well, good little (brained) Danny Quayle finally faced facts - sort of.

He recently jumped out of the Presidential race claiming that his financial analysts figured out that there is no way he'd be able to raise the amount of money it would take to compete with George W. Bush.

Gee, DAN, I always thought all it took was a strong candidate for office, and now you're saying that it takes GREEN?

Sure, yeah, riiiight.

Are you certain that it wasn't just that you WOKE UP AND SMELLED WHAT YOU'VE BEEN SHOVELING?

No - it couldn't have been that you realized that you are a total schmuck, lucky to have held any office at ALL in the first place, and that you were only elected as Vice President because you made George Bush look good? (Wow, you did the same favor for his son!)

Well, obviously you ARE a schmuck because you feel the need to lie to America just to save face. Ah well. I'm just glad you stopped wasting our time.

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE CELEBRATES 25 YEARS

SNL celebrates 25 years and fifteen years of ACTUAL comedy.

Which is still no small feat - too bad all the really funny people from those fifteen years are either dead or just not funny any more.

I GUESS WE CAN'T ALL JUST GET ALONG

There is no bigger moron on the planet than those who think there are no aliens in outer space simply because they haven't visited us yet.

You want to know why they haven't visited?

Here's a question for you: Would YOU visit Earth if YOU were an alien life form?

I mean come ON! Look at us humans! We're HORRIBLE. Greed runs rampant in ALL sections of life here on Earth. Whether the greed is for money, power, food or territory it rules all mankind.

What's worse is that we humans feel that as long as we are victimizing SOMEone, things are good. Of course, striking other countries is too costly and messy, so most countries tend to turn on themselves.

Look at the mess in East Timor. Look at Russia's repeated attempts to keep Chechnya in Czech - I mean check. Couldn't they just have a vote? Would that be so difficult? When Quebec wanted to bail on Canada was there a WAR? No, there was a VOTE.

What about the UK and Northern Ireland? Things are STILL a mess there. WHY? Even here in America things are not cool unless someone is beating up on someone else. Look at how the government needs to confuse the crap out of us with tax laws so so vague and maze-like that you have to get a degree in accounting JUST to figure them out.

Look at how the government picks on Hollywood instead of placing the blame on the school system, the parents and THE INDIVIDUAL.

It's insane how we point the finger at anyone we think is a vague threat to us. I think we should try going against the trend - the next time you feel threatened by someone, try this: buy them flowers, or even a pack of gum.

See what happens - I dare ya.

Sunday, September 19, 1999

WORK SUCKS

Our WHOLE society is ass-backwards.

So I go out for this new job, right?

I sell myself as enthusiastic, quick-learning, a multi-tasker and in general, an all-around good guy to have in the workplace. The only problem is, I seem to have done a much better job at selling myself than I thought. Now, I am a little more than a month into my new job and my new boss is wondering if I'm cut out for the job as I still haven't learned everything and am still behind on a few things.

Actually, I think it's not me or my selling of myself, but in fact is this wonderful language we all forget from time to time that we are using. My new boss failed to explain to me the definitions for certain words she was using. Certain words like "overtime" and "expectations" and "questions" were definite problem sources for me over the past few weeks. Obviously, her definition of "overtime" included a much larger number of minutes than mine.

Her idea of "expectations" also failed to exclude a large amount of vertical space. And the "questions" she said I shouldn't be afraid to ask? Let's just say I have questions about her open-ness to questions.

I'm a hard worker - I'm also a college graduate and my boss doesn't understand that people have different definitions for common concepts. What can I do about it? Nothing. I was hoping this job would be a good one for me - it still may be, but I doubt it. All thanks to that wonderful language called English.

I say we nuke the UK - they created this damn language!! Let's make 'em pay!!

STIR OF ECHOES IS GOOD - (DON'T) CALL IT A SIXTH SENSE

BOY are you Americans IDIOTS. I am CONSTANTLY amazed at how Americans KEEP putting money into the pockets of Bruce Willis and his crap-o-rama The Sixth Sense.

You are all so EASILY entertained by an EASY LIE that fans of The Sixth Sense call a "great plot twist". Well, do me a favor - if you've seen The Sixth Sense, go see Stir Of Echoes and watch a solid movie with good plot and character development and a story structure that doesn't LIE to you. It doesn't have any WOW-style plot twists, it's just a GOOD, SOLID MOVIE.

Trust me. You'll enjoy it.

THIS IS WHAT I GET FOR MISSING THE NEWS

Can someone just tell me one thing, please?

Where the hell is Timor?

East or west Timor - I don't care - but where is it?

I have been working my butt off for the past couple months with one full-time job, one part-time job, a web site, a girlfriend and hopeful career and as a result, I haven't watched the news in easily two months.

Now I hear that there is some UN sanction fighting force going to someplace called "Timor" to stop some killing there. Gee - I wonder why we, the United States aren't leading the assault.

Actually, I don't - here's why we aren't leading the charge: two colors, green and white. Specifically the green of money that we DON'T have at stake in Timor (wherever that is) and the white of the skin of the people whose lives are NOT being threatened in Timor.

Oh sure, we care, but not enough to lead the charge because ONLY human lives are at stake and the skin of those human lives is kind of a light brown. They're Indian, right? (I know approximately where Timor is!) Wow and to think I almost missed this great opportunity to bitch about America's white-centricity.

That's what I get for missing the news!!

Sunday, September 12, 1999

WORLD WIDE? YOU AIN'T KIDDING!

Have you noticed just how smegging big the World Wide Web is getting?

Just three years ago you would probably find it very neat to find someone who has his or her own web site. These days, EVERYone and their mother has a web site.

Of course, I am just being figurative as my own Mom doesn't have her own web site - although she has put one together for work related stuff. So, just what can one find on all of these web sites? It would seem just about anything.

As I have said in the past, the web even has several web sites that function as guides to the best web sites. And that's the real problem here - there are so many services that are duplicated out there and thanks to the cheapness of the web, it's taking forever for the sucky web sites to GIVE UP ALREADY!

Now, take my site for instance, I have decided to give web users something that they cannot get anywhere else - ME! Now, can any other web site promise as unique a subject for their web site? I doubt it. So here's a quick note to any web masters that may be reading this: try to find something to do with your web site that NO ONE ELSE IS DOING. If you can't and want to duplicate another site's services or content, then check out the best sites that have that content and DO IT BETTER THAN THEM!!

If you can't, do a site for yourself. Who cares about making money off of it?? (Okay, ignore that last bit...)

THE GOOD TV GRAVEYARD PT 1

Well, you might think that ten years is long enough to do a series, but Mystery Science Theater 3000 is a television show with an ENDLESS supply of fodder for new and fresh episodes. What is the premise of this show you ask? Read on!

Here's how the show works: An average white guy is trapped on a satellite and is forced to watch really bad movies with two smart-talking robots. Together, the three of them rip apart the worst films to come out of Hollywood. THIS IS A SHOW THAT DESERVES TO LIVE FOREVER!

I mean, like what - has Hollywood stopped making bad films? I DON'T THINK SO!

So WHY did the show get canned? Who knows? Maybe it was the execs over at the SciFool network who didn't understand the humor - or maybe it's the fact that there are too many morons watching TV and most of them just don't get MST3K. Either way, the smartest television show (and the longest running comedy series) now exists only in our memories and in the video collections of intelligent geeks across the planet. Rest In Peace Mystery Science Theater 3000! We hope to see something new from your creators soon. We wish them luck and hope to see all of your episodes on video shelves soon.

As for the SciFi Channel? I now have no reason to watch your channel ever again.

On September 12, 1999, the final new episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 ran on the SciFi Channel. MOVIE SIGN was gotten for one last time and the quips from the boys on the Satellite of Love went silent. But in the wake of bad ratings, little support from the SciFi Channel and even less support from scifi geeks who think just because THEY have been quipping to movies for years they have no need to watch, the quipping will be continued by those of us who watched each new episode every week. While MST3K will not go on, We, the MiSTies, will forever quip. MST3K is dead. Long live MST3K. I read your book, you magnificent bastard. Hikeeba. You die joe. They just didn't care. Why doesn't Johnny care? Why don't they look? Rock Climbing. Sand Storm. Deep Hurting. I can't come back! I don't know how it works! Good bye folks!
Mystery Science Theater 3000
1989-1999

AIDS NO LONGER A THREAT?

It may not seem as much of a threat to those of us in America - but check this out: there are roughly 761 million people in Africa. If it weren't for AIDS, there would be 11 million more.

In fact, at presently there are about 22.5 million people in Africa with AIDS.

According to the Center for Disease Control, there are only 208,000 people in the US living with AIDS. Once again we see how the countries with the money really don't give a crap about the countries that don't have a lot of money. Or maybe it's just that the people in Africa are mostly black.

Either way, a lot of people are dying and something needs to be done - I have no idea what, but SOMETHING should be done. I feel pretty useless in regards to all this. But what else can I do but point out the problem?

Sunday, September 5, 1999

NEWSFLASH: LEWINSKY JOINS JENNY CRAIG!

Now, you won't catch me making Monica Lewinsky-fat jokes - they got old about a week into the whole Monicagate thing, but I am amazed that the fact that Monica joined Jenny Craig made the news ANYWHERE, but in the Jenny Craig member newsletter.

The article I read appeared in The Hollywood Reporter last week and stated that although Lewinsky had signed up with Jenny Craig her role as a spokesperson for the weight-loss clinic had not yet been announced. That's probably because all she wants to do is LOSE SOME FRIGGIN' WEIGHT!! I mean, after the 12-PLUS months of having her BUTT be the BUTT of FAT jokes I don't blame her!

But give the girl a break already!

Hey, I never thought she was FAT in the first place, sure, she's no hottie, but she wasn't exactly Mrs. Jabba, either, you know?

SIXTH SENSE SUCKS

Now JUST what is it about American movie goers that makes them forget about great TV shows like The Twilight Zone?

Sixth Sense was all too similar to about eight different episodes of the classic Rod Serling series. The twist, I don't think I should ruin it for you just in case you happen to be one of the slobbering masses who wouldn't figure it out on your own and thusly be entertained by it, so, I shall just give you a big old hint.

DON'T WORRY - it won't give anything away.

The twist is only a twist because you assume that it's not there on the grounds that it would be too damn obvious. This movie doesn't out-and-out lie to you, but it does omit an awful lot. Also, the movie isn't about what you think it is.

So there.

But that's not the only thing that's wrong with it. The film takes about forty minutes to get to the premise. And when we do get there we don't see enough of what the kid sees. The movie lifts gags from Poltergeist (the kitchen scene to name one rip off) and steals it's editing style from John Sayles' Lone Star. I was almost as bored in Sixth Sense as I was in Titanic! Oh and one other thing - why is the film called "Sixth Sense" when the Random House Dictionary defines "sixth sense" as a keen intuitive perceptiveness? You call seeing dead people "intuitive"?

Whatever!

AIR UNFAIR

Why does it cost SO amazingly much to fly these days?

I know that planes are expensive and the the pilots of these planes are very skilled and should be paid a lot of money, but it seems to me that prices are getting a bit out of hand. A couple years ago my boss took me flying in a single propeller Sesna they he rents from time to time. He said the fuel costs about $50 for an hour's worth.

Now, I understand it takes a lot less fuel to power a single propeller engine than it does to power four huge engines on a 737 or whatever, but come ON! It costs more than $200 one way to fly across the country ONCE. Think about it - you've got around 100 people on those cross continental flights, right? $200 multiplied by 100 is $20,000!!! Does it REALLY cost that much to fuel a plane, buy those lousy dinners, pay those rude flight attendants and those booze swilling pilots?

Think about it - $20,000 is what my parents spent for a year's worth of my college - with just twice that amount of money you could buy one of those Hummers Arnold Shwarzenegger drives! And for the price of a really cheap BMW, one can fly a plane across the country. Does that seem a bit OFF to anyone else out there?

Sunday, August 29, 1999

CAN YOU CARE LESS OR MORE?

You ever notice how some people express their disinterest in something by saying "I COULD CARE LESS!"?

I notice it a lot and it drives me NUTS. Obviously these are people who don't bother THINKING about what they say before they open their mouths.

Saying "I COULD CARE LESS" means you COULD care less but you DON'T - in other words, you DO care to some extent and that you COULD care less.

What you should say is "I COULDN'T CARE LESS."

See?

You couldn't POSSIBLY care less because it would be just IMPOSSIBLE because you don't care at all. There, no you can correct anyone who COULD care less.

CBS (Crappy Broadcasting Saps)


Y2(FULL OF)K(RAP)

I am SO tired of people telling me "don't fly within a couple of days of New Years!"

I mean, what's going to happen?

Will the airplane navigational computers suddenly get confused about what day it is and shut off it's engines? And all this paranoia about taking your money out of the bank - how will the computers not knowing the date cause you to LOSE money?

If all of the sudden bank computers think it's 1900, how will that tell the computers that you never deposited the money? It'll just be confused but the money is still there, right? And what's all this about the electricity shutting off because of electric company computers not getting the date right? I mean can someone break this puppy down and explain it to the world in terms we can all understand? And who cares anyway? Like we all can't live with out electricity for a couple of days? I mean come on!

Up until 150 years ago, there WAS no electricity aside from the kind in the sky when there's a thunder storm. As for losing your money - the banks had BETTER fix their little Y2K problems because if all of their customers freak and take out all of their money before New Years, America's economy will fall apart and it'll be this insane paranoia's fault!

That's where the danger really lies - like FDR said, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Don't be afraid of Y2K, it'll come and it'll go and we'll survive. No sweat. SO SHUT UP ABOUT IT ALREADY!!!

Monday, August 23, 1999

IN A HATING MOOD...

You ever just get that way?

Where you just feeling like hating something?

Ever worry that one day you won't be allowed to hate?

ABC (Already Been Cancelled)


A TRAFFIC TICKET FROM OFFICER BIG BROTHER

WHAT in FORD'S name is going on here?

Recently, in major American cities cameras at traffic lights have been installed. This is so that if you run a red light and your are less than a second too late getting through the intersection before the light turns red, a strobe flashes (or not if it's daytime) and a shutter is clicked and a few weeks later YOU get a ticket in the mail with a picture of your license plate.

I understand, but how is this PREVENTING crime?

This just punishes you if you break that specific traffic "law".

Okay, so many of these intersections are clearly signed as being "photo enforced", but what's NEXT? Cameras in our place of work to make sure we don't steal office supplies or have sex with a co-worker in a broom closet?

How about closed-circuit homes delivering 'round-the-clock surveillance just in case a cop isn't walking by your home as you are committing a "crime" in the privacy of your own home? Why not surgically implant behavior modifying chips in your brain (like South Park!) that will force you to commit no crimes? Won't that be GREAT?

Do you like to have the freedom to do wrong?

Sunday, August 15, 1999

NICE ONE CNN.COM!

Did you catch the main headline on CNN.COM on the night of Monday August 16? It read: "At least 100 feared dead in powerful Turkey quake".

Now, I don't mean to make light of death, destruction and the Wrath Of God, but isn't that just what these morons at CNN.COM did? I mean - HELLO!

"TURKEY QUAKE" ???

THIS is how you phrase it?

Would it have been THAT difficult to phrase it "At least 100 feared dead in powerful Turkish Earthquake"?

Would those extra words take up THAT much space? What if some dumb cracker from the American South were to read that headline? He'd turn to his wife and say: "Look hunney! Some turkey had a heart attack and some how killed 100 people! I told you we shoulda gone with farmin' chickens!"

Okay, so you might ask "What the hell's a cracker doing with a computer?"

Good point, but regardless - the bad choice by CNN.COM's copy editor put an odd and vaguely amusing slant on a truly tragic event. I can just imagine what this same editor would have put on the headline when Princess Diana died.

"Princess Di, died!"

Are YOU a Turkey?

PHANTOM COULD TAKE TITANIC AND IT STILL MIGHT!

Last week in the Media Bitch, I demanded Lucasfilm and 20th Century Fox mount one last ad campaign to help The Phantom Menace earn the $185 million more it needs to overtake Titanic in total box office cash. The good news may not be definite, but it's getting there - there are rumors roaming the 'net suggesting that 20th Century may be slowly pulling TPM from theaters over the next few weeks only to re-release it over the Christmas Holiday to capitalize on the movie-going-mood that usually sweeps over the nation that time of year.

If this is true, this could be all it would need to be in order to take THAT CAMERON DOWN! I just hope it's true...

Would YOU go see Phantom again?

QUAYLE IS STILL IN THE RACE?!?

Danny, Danny, DANNY! WHAT are you THINKING???

YOU want to run for PRESIDENT?

Come ON! Do you REALLY think anyone will even let you win the primary???

Hell, I'm a Independent and I'd vote for Elizabeth Dole before I'd vote for you!! (And what the hell kind of leader would she be?!? All she's done is run the Red Cross!) I know I don't have to run down the long list of all too public blunders you committed while you were Vice President, but I'll name a few just cuz it's fun.

I remember you saying something once, on a visit to Latin America, about how you had wished you'd studied Latin. You know they don't speak Latin in Latin America these days...

Then there was that certain vegetable that shall remain nameless (and therefore will NOT be spelled INcorrectly).

Two words: Murphy Brown. Three more words: She is FICTIONAL.

Do you really think that after all of these ridiculous blunders IN PUBLIC that YOU might have a shot at this big old race? I think you should grab all of your campaign donations and open a restaurant called "LOSERS". I'm sure it would be a much bigger success than your presidential campaign. Just think of all the people who would frequent it! OJ Simpson would eat there, Craig Kilborn would come there after his new show gets canceled. Joan Rivers and her daughter could eat there! Dean Devlin and Roland Emerich would have your place cater their next Godzilla film. Kato Kaelin would tell everyone he worked there, but would never wait on any tables and eat all your food. Lyndon La Rouche would eat there (if he wasn't in prison again for tax evasion).

And once the 2000 election is over, I can think of three more people who will eat there too, Elizabeth Dole, HOPEFULLY George W. Bush oh yeah - and YOU!

Do you have a brain? Or are you going to vote for Quayle?

Monday, August 9, 1999

THE WEB IS TOO BIG!

Are you as baffled by the choices online as I am?

It's inSANE how many different web sites there are for a few things. Like jobs - if you listen to commercial news radio for an hour, you'll hear commercials for at least three different job listings sites. I recently did a search at infoseek.com using the keyphrase "job listings" - I got just short of 25,000 listings! EVERYONE seems to have a job listing site and each one of those sites promises you a job that is better paying and more enjoyable than the one you have now.

I did another search at infoseek, this time using the keyphrase "movie news". This one pulled up over 3000 sites. Another search, this one for "plane tickets", displayed over 5,000 sites, most of them promising you the lowest fares in the industry. And these are just three incredibly common things one might look up on the World Wide Web. But now the real problem becomes this: How can you choose from the myriad choices available? Well, there are myriad sites to help you do that. An infoseek search using "hot sites" got me a listing of almost 24,000 sites. Apparently a LOT of web sites out there seem to have the idea that THEY are the best site to find the best sites for whatever you are interested in.

IT'S INSANE.

How should you choose? Do what I do - word of mouth. I talk to friends on the 'net and ask them about one topic I am looking for information on and see if they have any ideas for sites. Then I check them out. I almost never use the search engines because I know they can't be as specific as I need them to be, so just screw all that. Once I have found a few sites I like, I just bookmark 'em and visit ONLY THEM. Life is too short to surf.

PHANTOM COULD TAKE TITANIC IF ONLY...

...LUCAS WOULD HAVE A BRAIN!! It's true - either he's a moron or his marketing people are morons. He could get SO much more money out of America if ONLY they would just try ADVERTISING Phantom Menace. Then, people would rush out and see the movie again - even if ONE HALF of the people who already saw it saw it again, that would still be $200 worth of people!! That would SHOVE TPM right past Tyranic. DO IT!! TAKE DOWN CAMERON!!

Would YOU go see Phantom again?

LA IS SO LAME BUT

Boo-hoo, yeah, I know that's what you're thinking.

POOR PETE, he lives in LA, where gorgeous women walk the streets in thongs and rich men drive nice cars and EVERYONE makes lots of money.

YEEEEAAAAH.

ANYway - here's my latest gripe about my home town for most of the 90s. I HATE the HOLLYWOOD INDUSTRY! They(we) are such self-centered, insensitive MORONS. They(we) all think they(we) can just have a party at a ritzy restaurant and ASSUME that everyone driving by would of course be wanting to go. This piece of insanity ACTUALLY happened to me last night! I was driving home after working a bit late at my dayjob. I was driving down Beverly Boulevard just before it hits Santa Monica boulevard when all of the sudden I found myself in the right two lanes (it's six lanes across) and I was stuck there thanks to a row of traffic cones that blocked in the right two lanes of the road!!

They were expecting THAT MANY people that they should take over TWO LANES!! And what's worse is that the valet guys were aggressively opening people's car doors, expecting them to be interested in going to this stupid restaurant! There was literally a horde of about EIGHT valets all swarming from car to car, heading right towards ME. So I flipped them off and ran over a cone or two, heading into the third lane from the right in which NO ONE had been traveling and sped off.

Ten minutes later, closer to home, in Westwood, I ran into MORE traffic thanks to the premiere of that stupid 70s movie Detroit Rock City co-produced by KISS who decided to have a friggin' ROCK CONCERT on the corner of Wilshire and the street my home is TWO BLOCKS from! So first it's so self-important dinner and then it's some crappy rock band from the 80s trying to make a comeback (yeah right). I JUST WANTED TO GO HOME TO BE WITH MY GIRLFRIEND!!

Why don't I move? I can't be a TV/Movie writer in any other town but this one. And until I become a PAID TV/Movie Writer, I'M JUST GOING TO KEEP ON WHINING!!

Sunday, August 1, 1999

GEORGE, YOU'RE A FRIGGIN' DICKWEED! (YES, YOU, LUCAS!)

Anybody read EMPIRE Magazine?

Okay, now I'm ASSUMING you've seen The Phantom Menace by now but if you haven't and DON'T WANT ANYTHING GIVEN AWAY - STOP READING!!

Okay, here's what Lucas said in EMPIRE Magazine: "At one point, when Obi-Wan kills Darth Maul, he just fell into the pit. I looked at it and thought this isn't going to work because, if people like him enough, they are going to want him to come back and they're going to assume somehow he gets out of it. So I had to cut him in half to say this guy's gone, he's history, he ain't coming back. I'll come up with another apprentice. The whole issue of having apprentices, poor Darth Sidious trying to replenish his apprentice supply, is one of the main plot points."

WHAT a LOSER!! Lucas doesn't understand that YOU DON'T create a character that is as eye-catching and as BUTT-KICKING as Darth Maul and NOT give him a back story!!!

In the quote above Lucas admits that Maul is a throw-away character, a person that basically functions as a token bad guy who comes in and exists long enough to kill a major character, only to get killed off.

THAT IS CALLED BAD WRITING GEORGE - no, that's actually called LAME WRITING!

NO character should be in your script that doesn't have A REASON TO BE THERE!

What's the point of building him all up only to ditch him?!? Why NOT give him some interesting reason to be there? Aren't you just LAZY to do anything ELSE?

I mean, Maul's mystery was the ONLY PLOT ELEMENT I LIKED!!! Imagine reading an Agatha Christie novel only to discover that there was no murder at all - that the guy just tripped and fell on the knife. HOW LAME WOULD THAT BE???

I'll tell you... VERY.

GUESS WHAT GEORGE!!! JUST like when you created DARTH VADER and then later when you created BOBA FETT - your throw away characters were MORE INTERESTING THAN EVERYONE ELSE!!!

YES, you can admit it - VADER wasn't originally Luke's Dad, he was just a HENCHMAN with a bit of history with Kenobi. You ALL but killed him off at the end of Star Wars. Then, with how eye-catching and awe-inspiring Vader was, you decided "Hm, maybe I can do something with this guy!"

The same happened with BOBA FETT - you tossed this mysterious guy into a cartoon you wish you never made (remember the Star Wars Holiday Special??) and people FELL IN LOVE with Fett - so not only did you use him a bit in Empire Strikes Back but again in Return of the Jedi. But then, in Jedi, you realized that maybe Fett was getting too popular and that you wanted to make sure people weren't distracted from your now flat and boring characters (Luke talking like an ACTUAL monk, Han being a wuss and Leia being, well, flat) so you decided to kill him off, but boy were the fans pissed.

So not only did you give him a longer scene in the Return of the Jedi Special Edition but you put him in the original Star Wars - a movie he wasn't even originally in!! But that wasn't it - it turns out that Fett will also be in Star Wars: Episode 2! And guess what George? Darth Maul will be there too. Why? Because you will realize the potential of this guy as the most interesting character in Episode 1 and his popularity and you'll BRING MAUL BACK, JUST LIKE YOU DID VADER AND FETT. MARK MY WORDS.

NEW SHOWS, THEY SUCK PART 6! (THE FINAL CHAPTER)

Check out my past declarations of upcoming crappy shows NEW to American TV this Fall:

NBC - THE WB - ABC - CBS - UPN

And now, let the blood bath continue with FOX!

"Get Real" (FOX) - This is a family drama with three kids, their two parents and their windowed Mom. The only thing that gives me hope is that it was created by the guy who created Parker Lewis Can't Lose from the early 90s and that show was GREAT. But unless this show is really wacky (Like Parker), this show will tank.

"Harsh Realm" (FOX) - This show from Chris Carter, the creator of The X-Files, is about a US Army Soldier who is sent "into" a military VR combat simulator where several other soldiers had already "entered" and become "trapped". Well, all I can say is video game based TV shows, NEVER make for good TV. Plus I hear the comic book this series is based on is TOTALLY different and MUCH better. Expect this to last one season out of respect for Carter and then get canned. After that expect Chris Carter to desperately cling to as many seasons of the X-Files as he can convince Fox he can do, because at this point he'll know that anything else he creates... sucks.

"Manchester Prep" (FOX) - Based on that movie Cruel Intentions from 1998 that was already based on Dangerous Liasons which in turn was based on that old French book Les Liaisons Dangereuses. Don't expect anything much from this series but a soap opera structure that won't be smart enough to grab anyone's attention.

"The Badland" (FOX) - The story of a 19 year-old rookie cop. Now, don't cops have to go to some sort of Cop School? If they don't, why are we letting these guys roam the streets with GUNS?!? Anyway, this doesn't strike me as all that exciting. It could be good, but unless I hear GREAT things after it's premiere, I WON'T be watching...

"Time Of Your Life" (FOX) - This Party Of Five spin-off stars cute as a button actress Jennifer Love Hewitt as her Party character goes off in search of her Mom's past. This could be good, but without top-notch writing only the true die hard Party fans will follow the show and no new Time fans will be created. I bet the show will fail, but not because it's bad, just because it'll be written off as a just another spin-off. I hope I'm wrong though.

"Action" (FOX) - The creator of The Larry Sanders Show is not showing an great originality with this new show about a producer trying to survive in Hollywood. GREAT, ANOTHER story about Hollywood guys. I know Hollywood-types are self-centered, but ENOUGH ALREADY!! If I want this kind of story I'll go watch my copy of The Player!!

"Ally" (FOX) - This quasi-spin-off of Ally McBeal basically features cutting-room-floor footage from the hour version of the show somehow cut together to make 22 minute stories. I hope this one works, I'm curious how it WILL work. Sounds like this show's run will be shorter than one of Ally's skirts. We'll see...

"Malcom In The Middle" (FOX) - The story of an incredibly smart fourth grade white boy living in a "dysfunctional" family who is suddenly thrust into an "advanced" class at school. I can't figure out which is more boring, the cute white cast or its premise. Strangely it's created by Linwood Boomer who claims to have created 3rd Rock from the Sun although I can't seem to find his name listed anywhere at IMDB.com's listing for 3rd Rock - go fig.

"Dark Angel" (FOX) - James Cameron created this mid-season series about a genetically engineered (and cute as a button) 18 year-old girl who is hunted by the military who created her as she hunts down her fellow genetically engineered siblings. Hm, Jim Cameron furthers his attempts at creating original material by ripping off the Image Comic Book Gen 13. Expect this to go the way of ID4 creators' The Visitor - it'll last for 13 episodes and then end up in reruns on the SciFool Network.

Do YOU think these shows will be any good?

NO DISRESPECT TO THE KENNEDY CLAN... BUT

WHAT is the DEAL with all of this MOURNING FOR JFK JR!??!

Again, I don't mean any disrespect toward the Kennedy family, I am sad for their loss - but he seems to be on every magazine cover out there - WHY?!??

I was at a newsstand last night and the cashier there said that JFK Jr. was on the cover of no less than 23 covers!!! WHAT'S WITH THAT?!? WHAT HAS THIS GUY DONE?!?

Well, it took him a few extra years to become a lawyer and then he was an ASSISTANT District Attorney for New York City and then after that he was a reasonably successful magazine editor. Okay, so he wasn't a complete loser or anything, but COME ON!!

23 MAGAZINE COVERS?!?!

Okay, sure, his Dad was a very important person - I'm fine with the burial and the usage of all that military expertise to find his body, but CAN WE JUST MOVE ON NOW PLEASE?

I asked the cashier at the newsstand if he had seen any other person's death merit as many magazine covers and he said there was one other person. Princess Diana. THAT I CAN UNDERSTAND!! But did JFK Jr. run around helping people who had stepped on landmines? Was JFK Jr. compared to Mother Theresa before AND after he died? Did JFK Jr. date a Rich Indian TV Producer? Okay, well, that last part really had nothing to do with this, but you get my point - the guy, compared to his father and uncle (even TED) was a LOSER!! LET'S GET ON WITH OUR LIVES NOW!!!

Are YOU more successful than JFK Jr.? Will YOU get on 23 magazine covers when YOU die?

Sunday, July 25, 1999

TOO MANY TOYS, TOO LITTLE MONEY!

Well, another week, another huge wad of cash blown on cool Star Wars toys. Every time I think I've bought everything "Star Wars" that I want to buy, I find something NEW!

Now, mind you, I'm not a sucker, I don't buy EVERYTHING with the "SW" logo on it, I just go for what I think is REALLY cool. And there isn't as MUCH cool stuff for this SW movie as there have been for past SW movies, but I have a JOB now and MONEY so it's just SO much HARDER to hold myself back from dropping another $15 for a cool Maul t-shirt (like I did just last night!) or some other thing.

Right now I feel like there are only three more things SW that I want to buy. A die-cast Darth Maul digital watch, a Darth Maul container (it's a box shaped like a bust of Maul and then you open his skull crown to put stuff inside) and finally, the new cloaked Darth Maul four inch action figure. Of course, I say this now, but between now and when I finally GET all of those things there will be a handful more cool Star Wars Themed merchandise that will silently beg me to BUY THEM... ALL OF THEM... May the Force HELP ME!

NEW SHOWS, THEY SUCK PART 5!

Check out my past declarations of upcoming crappy shows NEW to American TV this Fall:

NBC - THE WB - ABC - CBS

And now, let the blood bath continue with UPN!

"The Parkers" (UPN) - This Moesha spin-off probably has the most promise, story-wise, out of all of the new sitcoms on UPN this fall. Kim (Moesha's best-friend, I'm told) goes off to junior college only her Mom, Mo'Nique, decides that now is a good time to go back to school herself and that the junior college her daughter is going to is the right school for her to attend as well. Even though I won't be watching this show (I don't watch many sitcoms these days), dramatically and comedically it does seem pretty solid. I mean, how many people enjoy having their Mom around IN CLASS and out at CLUBS. SHEESH! Compared to the rest of the new fall fare, maybe I'll make time for The Parkers after all!

"The Grown Ups" (UPN) - I can't even figure out the premise of this show - it's so convoluted. It's something about Jaleel White (formerly Urkel) becoming a VP at a box making company and going after his high school crush. There are also a handful of other almost unrelated characters that are thrown into the mix for no apparent reason. This show will bomb, even if it's well written because Jaleel White does not have enough star power to pull people in long enough for them to get hooked.

"Shasta McNasty" (UPN) - The story of a three guy garage band that signs it's first recording contract. They also share an apartment that has a frequent kitchen-crasher in the form of a street-smart female from next door who basically plays the role of the token woman. Apparently the guys haven't let their success go to their heads as they still enjoy causing havoc in the lives of those around them, like the pizza guy or whatever. I have one thing to say to this show: "AND?!?" This show suffers from "Nothing New Here" Syndrome. We all saw the reruns of "The Partridge Family" and they were a nice wholesome family - these guys are just dickweeds with nothing better to do with their free time than mess around. This show sounds like a BIG bomb, but because it's on UPN, it might stick around for a couple seasons.

"Secret Agent Man" (UPN) - From the guy who brought us last year's flop Fantasy Island and this years theatrical flop Wild Wild West comes this hour drama that feels more like a sequel to the same guy's hit Men In Black from last summer. Only don't expect it to be any good unless Barry Sonnenfeld (the guy behind the aforementioned failures and success) actually went BACK IN TIME two years to when he was more talented and brought the show forward in time for us to watch it. SERIOUSLY - DON'T WATCH THIS SHOW - Dina Meyer is cute as hell, but the show looks like crap. Here's the dynamic, Super-cool and suave secret agent Monk takes on the new recruit, Parker, but somehow they have to deal with a Secret Agent Woman named Holliday. She has an elitist attitude that she is a better agent than Monk and that Parker should listen to her instead. And watch the cliches ensue!! (Didn't I see this dynamic in the old Transformers cartoon?)

"WWF Smackdown" (UPN) - Proof that UPN is scraping the bottom of the home viewer barrel, this "show" is just what it looks like--wrestling. 'Nuff said. Let's hope it bombs - of course, it won't. SHOOT ME NOW! SHOOT ME NOW!

"Blockbuster Video's Shockwave Cinema" (UPN) - This is a new series of crappy tv movies for UPN, sure NOT to please. Remember all those crappy TV Movies UPN's been running off and on for the past two or so years? No? There's a reason - they suck.

UPN is done - tune in next week for FOX! (I can't WAIT!!)

YOU JUST WON THE LOTTERY AND YOU CAN'T AFFORD TO BECOME PRESIDENT

I could win the lottery and still not have enough money to campaign and LOSE for the office of the President of the United States.

It is so ridiculous how this entire country is run by MONEY. Forget the Red, the White and the Blue, now it's just the Green, the Green and the GREEN.

Or should I just say the GREED.

The plague of greed has spread itself to the realm of politics where if you've got a lot of dough you can win. This year we will watch money triumph over AN INCUMBENT.

I hope I am wrong, really, I do hope that I am mistaken when I say that I expect Gore to lose the Presidential race against George W. Bush. Polls taken around the country ALREADY put Gore behind George W. Bush - why?

People feel Gore is stiff and what do they think of George W. Bush? He's the son of George Bush and he was pretty fun and animated and his kid is the Governor of Texas! Gore is just the Vice President, plus he's one of those environmental nuts. That's all we know right now - but let me tell you - I'd MUCH rather have a stiff, environment-minding ken doll in the White House over ANOTHER BUSH.

I did a LOT of work back in 1992 pointing out what a crappy leader Bush had been and I'm NOT about to see his KID get elected - BUT MONEY will see that I will fail. He will buy the ads and hire the speech writers and the PR guys and he will most likely get into the mudslinging first and oh, it'll be a mess. But in the end he will win. Why? Because of all that MONEY he's got that he's willing to SPEND to make sure his image is the most pristine, untouchable image out there.

If only we could put a cap on how rich people could be to run for Oval Office. Wouldn't that be cool? Sorry, you make 6 figures, TOO RICH! You? You're a plumber? And what will your platform be?

How GREAT would that be? Cable Guys and Video Store Owners from all over the country would declare their candidacy in the run for the highest office. And guess what? We'd FINALLY have a president that would be in touch with the people. Plus we might get really good deals on plumbing!

Sunday, July 18, 1999

NEVER ENOUGH TIME!!!

But what else is new. SOMEBODY FRIGGIN' INVENT A TIME MACHINE!! JEEEEEEZ!!!

Was this bitch short enough for you?

NEW SHOWS, THEY SUCK PART 4!

Check out my past declarations of upcoming crappy shows NEW to American TV this Fall:

NBC - THE WB - ABC

And now, let the blood bath continue with CBS!

"Now and Again" (CBS) - (Not to be mistaken for ABC's Once and Again) This show is about a middle-aged insurance guy who dies in an accident and then gets a new body from the government, a la Steve Austin. What a great idea for a-- HUH?? What a completely UNINTERESTING idea!! And WHO cares??? There's a REASON the SciFi Channel stopped running old eps of the Six Million Dollar Man - HELL, there was a reason the show got canned in the first place! NOBODY WILL WATCH IT! Why remake it now?!?

"Family Law" (CBS) - A female lawyer's lawyer-husband leaves her and their practice, taking their best clients with him. This'll be just as big a hit as CBS' The Client was. Didn't realize there was a TV version of the Grisham novel? That's cuz it lasted all of five seconds. This may last a season, but that's it.

"Judging Amy" (CBS) - NYPD Blue's Amy Brenneman stars in one of the few shows that actually looks GOOD to me on the fall schedule. Brenneman stars in a show about a Lawyer from NYC who leaves the city to become a judge in Connecticut. She moves in with her annoying mother (Tyne Daly) and her annoying brother. This series is apparently based on Brenneman's own mother's life. Let's hope her Mom has at least 26 good adventures in her life!

"Ladies Man" (CBS) - A middle-aged man tries to maintain his sanity in a house full of women. This one-gag-wonder will get boring quick. I wish it luck to last out the season. Oh and does this one remind anyone else of ABC's Odd Man Out? (Same formula, but replace middle-aged man with teenage boy.)

"Work With Me" (CBS) - Nancy Travis and Kevin Pollack star as married lawyers in this sitcom that is apparently a prequel to "Family Law" - okay, not really, but it sure sound like it! Anyway, Travis' lawyer has a heart of gold, helps the down-trodden and must deal with her corporate-lawyer-type-husband when he quits his job and becomes her partner. This show has the potential to be VERY good, but Travis and Pollack haven't had much luck in the sitcom arena, so I'm expecting a fish tank with this one. I wish 'em luck tho'!

"Love or Money" (CBS) - Yet another show about a bunch of white people living in New York. YIPPee. Or not.

CBS is done - tune in next week for UPN!

Can you handle the wait, or is it too much for you?!?

DESTROY THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY!

I've bitched about this before, but health insurance is back in the media after it's back in Washington as the two sides of our government debate exactly what to do about HMOs.

It's a big mess right now - the republicans are so blind by the amount of money they get from the HMO's (in the form of "donations" - yeah right try BRIBES!) that they are deaf to the sound of children dying as they are rushed to the only hospital that is covered by their HMO. WHAT ever happened to the basic idea of insurance?

I give you money and a little extra on top for your troubles and YOU GIVE IT BACK TO ME WHEN MY BABY DAUGHTER IS HIT BY A CAR!! But nooooo, some GREEDY BASTARD has to come up with all sorts of cheats and quiet, backhanded, tricky ways to make us all part with our money only to NEVER SEE IT AGAIN.

Sure, if you go with Plan A, it is cheaper, but it doesn't cover certain treatments.

WHAT'S THE POINT THEN!?!?

When we SHUT DOWN the insurance industry, Satan will have lost a major battle.


Are YOU in debt?

Sunday, July 11, 1999

GUN-RELATED DEATHS WORTH FREEDOM?

Not too long ago, a foreign friend of mine asked me just how many gun-related deaths would need to occur before I would agree with him that all guns should be banned in the US.

He lives in the UK where ALL guns are illegal. I was very upset with him for this because I felt he wasn't even vaguely understanding why my country wanted it's freedom from his. I mean HOW MANY YEARS has it been and the Brits STILL don't get it?

In case you don't get it either, here's why I will NEVER feel that ALL guns should be banned. I like having choices. In this case it's the choice to arm myself or not, if I should feel the need to. If I am forced to move to a bad neighborhood where gangs rule the streets, I LIKE the idea that I can go buy a gun should anyone threaten me or my loved ones.

"Trust the police to protect you" you say?

Yeah, sure.

All you have to do is watch the news to see how incredibly good they are at protecting the innocent. So, in exchange for me being smart enough to handle a gun (and to know I really don't need one right now) we make the unfortunate trade off that some people in this country don't handle firearms responsibly. It is a big price to pay, but damn it - the right to bear arms and PROTECT ourselves is a right that I hold dear, even though I am against firearms in the home, in general.

Now, I'm not saying ALL guns should be legal, I'm just saying SOME GUNS SHOULD BE LEGAL.

I am ALL FOR GUN CONTROL.

THERE IS NO NEED FOR A CITIZEN TO HAVE AN AUTOMATIC WEAPON. OR EVEN A SEMI-AUTOMATIC WEAPON.

I've fired a semi-automatic rifle and it was VERY difficult to use. Just regular guns that shoot one bullet per cocking are more than enough to satisfy my love of the right to bare arms.

Guns? What's your take?

NEW SHOWS, THEY SUCK PART 3!

Okay, two weeks ago in the Media Bitch, I began my ongoing series of predictions (Or "determinations," as I like to call them!) for the new fall season of TV here in America. First, I covered NBC, last week I made my predictions regarding the WB network. This week it's ABC. LET THE TV TRASHING CONTINUE! (Remember, my predictions are based on the title and the premise ONLY. I have not seen ANY of these shows yet.)

"Snoops" (ABC) - This show is from Ally McBeal creator David E. Kelley and it features the exploits of two sexy, white, female private detectives in Los Angeles who use technology to help them solve cases. Considering Kelley won't actually be WORKING on the show (he just created it and will be leaving it behind) I DON'T expect great things. It may survive for a while based on the chick factor, but that won't carry it forever.

"Oh, Grow Up" (ABC) - This one LOOKS like it stars cute as a button white girl Rena Sofer (From BH 90210 & General Hospital) and is about three buddies who live together in Brooklyn. That's why I say it LOOKS like she stars - it sounds like it's going to be about three guys, but who knows, it's the 90s, chicks can be "buddies" too. Of course, it won't matter since a show with this kind of title won't last. Plus, it sounds like another Friends knock-off. It may do well after Drew Carrey, however, but not because it's any good.

"Once And Again" (ABC) - This is simply a relationship drama starring gorgeous Sela Ward (Sisters) and hunky Bill Campbell (The Rocketeer). It seems they're two divorced parents who go on a blind date and begin a relationship. Considering the creators of the show haven't had a hit since Thirty-something AND the fact that ABC is only TRYING IT OUT in NYPD Blue's time slot, DON'T expect this one to stick around past it's limited run. It's a shame because Bill and Sela are both pretty decent actors.

"Then Came You" (ABC) - This is the story of a lovely OLDER lady, book editor who falls for a young room service waiter. Okaaaaaay, WHATever. SURE, this show will last! (SHEESH!)

"Wasteland" (ABC) - This one is from Kevin Williamson, creator of Dawson's Creek and it centers on a group of SIX friends who finish college and try living in NYC. Sound familiar? It should - it's ANOTHER Friends rip-off. Do production companies even BOTHER checking out the competition?

"Odd Man Out" (ABC) - This is the story of a teenage boy who tries to survive life in a house full of women. Wackiness is sure to ensue. Another bomber.

That's it for the ABC! Stop by next week and read how bad CBS's new shows will be! Yippee!

Or do you think they will ALL be great shows?

ENOUGH WITH THE CREDIT CARDS!

As far as I am concerned, Credit Cards are the most evil inanimate objects on the planet.

Guns are better than Credit Cards because the dangers are clear. You pull the trigger on a gun and someone could die. Pull the trigger on a credit card and a bullet flies as well - but you don't see it. You are distracted by the cool toy, or device or computer, or CDs that you buy.

It seems harmless to lay down that plastic for that new VCR and pay it off monthly over the next year or so. Sure, you're aware of the interest payments. In exchange for the Credit Card company loaning you the money, you give it back with a bit more on top for their trouble.

Fair enough.

But, like gambling, Credit Cards can become very addictive. And if you think you're doing any good by simply paying off your minimums each month, you're SEVERELY mistaken. If you do that, you're just treading water. Waiting until the LOTTERY comes to fish you out of that ocean is as good an idea as it sounds - you'll make more money renting yourself out as a lightening rod.

You know what happens if you stop treading water for just a moment? You sink beneath the surface and immediately begin to drown. So if your car needs work and you can't quite afford to pay a bill, it'll ripple across all of your other bills and then it's all down hill from there.

The only oddly nice thing that happens after that is when your account gets passed on to a collection agency, they actually STOP charging you the late and interest fees. Isn't that nice of them??

Now, I know I've said all of this before, but I felt this is an important lesson to learn - STAY AWAY FROM CREDIT CARDS. If you have one, DON'T EVER USE IT!!! EVER!!! If you HAVE to charge, use your check card - if your bank doesn't offer one, SWITCH TO ONE THAT DOES!

Check cards are EVERY bit as convenient as Credit Cards only the money comes right out of your checking account. NO PAYING FOR THINGS WITH MONEY YOU DON'T HAVE!!! THUSLY, NO INTEREST FEES ARE CHARGED. You just pay a small monthly fee of about two or three bucks. And ten years from now when you would otherwise be neck-deep in debt (like me) you will have been smart and used your good credit ONLY for the two things credit SHOULD be used for - buying a car and a house. So THERE.

Are YOU in debt?

Sunday, July 4, 1999

SURE I KNEW REINVENTING MY SITE WOULD BE HARD BUT..

Well, in case you haven't noticed, I have a new domain name! And boy what a pain it's been taking care of all of the things you have to take care of when you get a new domain name. I apologize for skimping out on the Technology Bitch again this week, and I'm sure you'll find some broken links floating around the site, but I'm typing as fast as I can!!! And hopefully by the end of July, I'll have everything worked out. Sorry for any annoyances - JUST BE PATIENT DAMN YOU! And look around! There's a lot to see!

What do you think of the new site so far?