Thursday, June 28, 2007

Full Disclosure Part 2

Star Trek: The Next Generation


There is something magical about this program. I think it's a case of the whole being greater than the sum of the parts. Although the parts are pretty damn awesome. The shiny skin and unwieldy emotion chip of Data, the ship's token android. The aliens that all basically look like humans, but with bigger ears or teeth. The quiet whispers and soothing gentlemanly doings of Captain Picard. The muted color schemes and background muzak. The parasites that take on personalities. That time everyone devolved into snakes and primordial goo. Genius!

Adding to the nonstop goodness, are the Holodeck episodes. Every television program has filler episodes, usually executed with flashbacks and warmhearted retrospective musings. Not TNG! When they have nothing to say for themselves, they throw their characters into the Holodeck - a "simulated reality facility" - and just write ridiculous side stories apropos of nothing. Sometimes they play cowboys, sometimes jazz musicians, sometimes the men wear tights. I'm still confused about whether they can get stuck in there or not. I think they keep this vague so I keep watching.

And I'd like to make clear I am not talking about all Star Treks across the board. This entry is very TNG-specific. I can't handle the other iterations and I don't care to try.

Simply put, any show featuring Reading Rainbow's Levar Burton wearing a headband around his eyes is a show that cannot be missed.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Full Disclosure Part 1

It always bugs me when someone professes their dorkdom and then follows it up with a decidedly not-geeky example. "I'm such a dork - I love NPR!" Please. You know nothing of my work. I've decided to show you the true inner workings of a dork, just because people should know before they open their pie holes, just because I can.

I'll illustrate my point with a Top Ten rundown of my favorite TV programs. And I mean programs I'm seriously excited to watch, will DVR, watch with full attention, make appointments for. Some are socially-acceptable and age-appropriate, but most are not.

For this first entry, I'm going to discuss a specific genre, because these shows can't really be separated by rankings and because I've got a lot more shows to discuss.

#10: MYSTERY SHOWS MADE FOR OLD PEOPLE

Matlock/Murder She Wrote/Columbo




What is more satisfying than a formulaic mystery solved by the elderly? Nothing, I say. There are scheming villains, small town cops with poorly-chosen accents, mullets, and soft focus camera work. There are big shoulder pads, many earnest facial expressions, and some outstandingly creative plot devices ("I know he isn't the real clown, because he just sneezed in this video frame! And the real clown isn't allergic to wigs! Look! Right here! We got 'em! The real clown is dead."). It's sort of like hanging out with my grandparents, while reliving my eighties childhood, while vicariously fighting crime.

Need I say more.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Stitch, Pedal, Stitch

Every morning when I get off the bus, headed for the underground stairwell that carries me into the office and away from my couch, I'm confronted with a huge sign:

IS SOMEONE YOU KNOW BEING FORCED TO WORK?

I'm probably not the target for the accompanying photograph of a small child operating a sewing machine, but I still keep the 1-800 number on my cell phone's speed dial. Just in case.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Fear Factor


A few weeks ago, we dined with a gentleman who harbors an unusual fear. A fear of something I've held close to my heart and stomach since the day Chef Brockett on Mister Rogers told me to wrap a piece of American cheese around it and "eat right away." His fear, my friends, is of the banana.

It all came out when I was contemplating getting a - gasp! - banana split for dessert. Horror flooded the poor man's face. Being the sweet flower that I am, I chose a coffee instead, but couldn't help grilling him. How can you be afraid of a delicious fruit? Of a very conveniently-packaged fruit? Of a fruit filled with Potassium and a startling ability to disappear into smoothies? Maybe it wasn't socially appropriate, but I couldn't help myself. (Flashback to my 13-year-old self in Amish country: "I'm sorry! I HAVE to look!")

He had no answers, only drama-filled accounts of getting sick at the sight of fruit salad and leaving parties that served Bananas Foster. I shouldn't judge since I have serious phobias of (completely appropriately) needles and flying and I know by their very definition phobias are irrational. Just think. Tyra Banks (and my boyfriend) are afraid of dolphins. Dolphins! The things we're all dying to swim with in a pee-filed pool. And you? What're you scared of?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Ow.

Things I ate tonight at the new employee dinner:

Lobster Ravioli
Vegetable Eggroll
Beef Satay
Crab Dumpling
Filet Mignon
Lemon Chicken
Chinese Broccoli
Bok Choy
Green Beans (DISTURBINGLY GOOD green beans)
Jasmine Rice
Fried Potatoes
Chocolate Banana (next post = banana phobias. wtf.)
Fried Apple
Flan with Raspberries
Chocolate Cake with Whipped Cream
Coconut Ice Cream
Kitchen Sink

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Hostess with the Mostest

My little brother's in town. I'm not about to win any Martha-Stewart-type award for Excellence in Hostessing, as my weeknights typically consist of Frasier reruns (My name is Amy, and I'm a Crane-aholic) and peanut butter toast, while my weekends involve a lot of...downtime. But I've been trying, in spite of my inherent laziness, to give the bro the full San Francisco treatment.

We drove down Lombard Street, strawberry milkshaked at In-N-Out Burger, and hunted sea otters in Monterey. He got the extensive tour of my cubicle, watched people suck face at Telegraph Hill, and strolled around Chinatown (PINK...BAGS...EVERYWHERE). We walked over the Golden Gate bridge, sneaked up to the Boy's office for some killer nighttime views and snack hoarding (late night gummy bears make life worth living) and took a long drive through farm country.

It's been water slide fun. Tonight I'm having over a couple friends for a Wii tournament. Team M will prevail.


Wii tennis. He won. I'm pretty sure he cheated.

Eating roadside stand cherries. I'm not really that pale. I don't think.

Looking at fish. I'm obviously not a PETA member, since everything I saw looked delicious.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Brrrrrrr


The photograph above illustrates two important points:

1) It's June. He's wearing a (thick) sweater and corduroys. And still cold. Every morning last week, I hustled to work in my winter peacoat and a wool scarf. I waited for the bus and when I swore about the fog trying to eat me, I saw my breath. At night, I considered building a fire while I drank hot cocoa and crocheted an afghan (watched tv). Yea, yea, "the coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco" - I get it. Enough. Good talk. Now bring me my sun.

2.) Cuteness.