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In Which We Hit It and Quit It

Monday, February 28, 2011

Leonard Nimoy's Ballad of Bilbo Baggins

Posted by Andrew R Tonry on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 9:20 PM

I heard this song on a podcast without description, thought it was amazing, and Googled the lyrics to find out who was responsible. My mind about cracked in half when Leonard Nimoy's name came up—singing about Hobbits is far weirder than the man's space poems or naked photos of large women. Behold:

Devil May Cry Goes Hollywood. Is This Awesome (Y/N)?

Posted by Earnest "Nex" Cavalli on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 5:44 PM

According to the entertainment biz barkers at Variety, Capcom's Devil May Cry is getting the feature film treatment courtesy Screen Gems.

You may recall Screen Gems as the Sony Pictures subsidiary behind such masterworks as Resident Evil, Ultraviolet and the recent Gwyneth-Paltrow-As-Jeff-Daniels-As-Britney-Spears flick Country Strong. Screen Gems also released Snatch, but that one's a bit harder to laugh at.

Aside from Variety's revelation that "Kyle Ward has been hired to pen the script, which revolves around the character of Dante, who avenges his mother's murder by killing off demons," little is known of the firm's plans for Capcom's stylish, hyperkinetic ballet of bullets and flying exclamatories.

Pitt? Brando? Wayans? WHO?!
  • Capcom
  • Pitt? Brando? Wayans? WHO?!

Of course, in a film like this, that sort of information isn't all that important. Hell, for that matter neither are niggling details like who they get to direct (please please PLEASE don't be Paul W.S. Anderson). The only truly important detail here is who they get to play Dante.

I have no doubt that this film is going to physically hurt me with its swirling black hole of suck, but if they can find an actor to convincingly portray the incredibly rad, smartass son of a demon, who can also rock the red leather trenchcoat and foppish white hair look, Screen Gems might still win some points from me.

Now would be the time to offer suggestions in the comments below. Who would make a convincing Dante?

Critical Mass Worst Nightmare

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 4:14 PM

Whoa, this is what I'm always afraid will happen on a group bike ride in Portland: A driver straight up plowed through a crowd of 150 cyclists on a Critical Mass ride in Brazil last Friday. The video below is pretty horrifying. Though somehow no one died, two people are in serious condition. The driver ditched his Volkswagen Golf a few blocks away and took the plates, but is now claiming "self defense". People on the ride are doubly upset that police and media have referred to the incident as an "accident"—think how different this would be if the weapon in the potentially deadly assault were a knife, a baseball bat, or anything other than a car.

Via Buzzfeed and Treehugger.

Jimmy Kimmel Steals My Name!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 3:59 PM

Yes, actually I did originally come up with the name "Hump Club"—but I have to admit that Jimmy Kimmel has put my name to good use with this lengthy, but hilarious infomercial for "Jimmie K's Hottie Body Humpilates" which features the sexiest women in Hollywood—including Scarlett Johansson, Jessica Alba, Minka Kelly, (a funny for once) Jessica Biel and more—including a post-courtroom Lindsay Lohan!) humping the shit out of some exercise balls. Worth a watch I'd say!


Your Congressman is Mad About Styrofoam

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Oregon Representative Earl Blumenauer is madder than if someone filched his bowties. He Twittered this morning:


Egads! It's true. One of the first actual boots-on-the-ground things the new GOP majority has done is roll back the environmental measures introduced to the House cafeteria since 2007. So goodbye compostable utensils and trays, which some complained were leaky and flimsy, hello styrofoam! The Republicans will, indeed, have a legacy that lasts hundreds of years.

Blumenauer's staff sent me this photo of the Congressman with a genuine Capitol Hill styrofoam cup. "Though people say the old compostable trays were leaky, the new clamshell ones are smaller, flimsier, and contribute to a general sense of unhappiness," jokes Blumenauer's press secretary Derek Schlickeisen.


Ninja Gaiden 3 Coming In 2012, Teaser Coming Right Now

Posted by Earnest "Nex" Cavalli on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 3:40 PM

Calling this a "heavy flow day" would be pretty childish, wouldn't it?

Continue reading »

A List of Brilliant Movie Ideas

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 3:29 PM


Having just won the Academy Award for Best Picture and earning over $100 million at the US box office, The King’s Speech is a decided success. And knowing that Hollywood likes to repeat its successes to the point of bleeding them dry, we can expect a forthcoming glut of historical bio-pictures about famous leaders overcoming minor handicaps. So, for the benefit of those in Hollywood, I’ve prepped the list of movie ideas that follows. Attention, Tinseltown: Here is your award-winning ticket to box office gold.

Continue reading »

Oh... so THAT'S When a Sit-Lie Law Goes Too Far

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 3:14 PM

No-good lawbreaker!
  • No-good lawbreaker!
I love America! When homeless and infirm people with nowhere else to go are kicked off public sidewalks or made to cram themselves and their stuff along the curb and ingest exhaust fumes, it's probably because they got what was coming to them.

But when Girl Scouts selling their devil cookies (which I will generally, and sinfully, eat whenever possible) have to make way because of a capricious sit-lie law? It's a goddamned national outrage! Because, hey, now that the same law that's targeted people I don't like is suddenly has suddenly been applied to people I do ... BIG GOVERNMENT'S REALLY GONE AND DONE IT NOW!

Here's what the Savannah, Ga., paper had to say about the cookie-sale crackdown, right outside (for delicious measure) the historic home of the woman who founded the Girl Scouts.

Jan McKinney, who heads product sales for the Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia, and Randolph Scott, city of Savannah's zoning administrator, recall the situation arose after someone complained last year. Scott investigated and realized the girls were setting up their table on the public sidewalk, which violates city ordinance. ... "I know it doesn't look good," Scott said. "However, other businesses won't care if it's the Girl Scouts or March of Dimes. They're going to say, 'Why can't I sit out front and solicit business?' "

Apparently, there's some hope. Because girls, unlike, say, homeless men, are cute and nice, and because people like brightly packaged sweets, a Savannah alderman wants to change the law to give 'em a pass. Awww.

Tonight's Nightmare Today

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 2:58 PM

A man gets a "fish pedicure." (Now imagine being in the same tub and sitting down. Nude.)



Fuse TV on Portland Music

Posted by Ezra Ace Caraeff on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 2:44 PM

"Welcome to Portland Oregon, where people come to enjoy the great outdoors and the sound of nature. SCREW THAT, LET'S ROCK!"

Gulp. To be honest, that introduction from photographer Ray Gordon had me a little concerned about the quality of this Fuse segment on Portland music that premiered last week on their Hoppus on Music program (which is no Pants-Off Dance-Off, but it does air every Friday at 8pm).

Turns out that Gordon knows his local music, and he conducts brief-yet-candid interviews with Justin Harris from Menomena, Trevor Solomon from MusicFest NW, the Thermals (who lovingly describe our city as being "for lazy people"), and the Decemberists' Colin Meloy. While the segment didn't cover any new ground for us Oregonians who are well aware that it rains here and we all have basements, it does do a superior job than similar clips that have aired in previous years, or any episode Portlandia. Anything is better than Portlandia.

End Hits: Put a Rear Admiral Richard Evelyn Byrd on it. ("It" being the South Pole.)

Sullivan Jumps to the Daily Beast

Posted by Eli Sanders on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 2:29 PM

The man of more than a million monthly uniques (at least one or two of them coming from all the linkage he gets on this here blog) is leaving the Atlantic and going to Tina Brown's Daily Beast.

It's another reminder, says Ben Smith, that Andrew Sullivan helped to create not just the political blog as we know it, but also a new kind of relationship between superstar journalist/blogger and traffic-hungry host:

One of the things Sullivan pioneered was the split between journalist and institution, and though he's been attached to various publications over the years, he's always been the one riding the beast—not vice versa, a change in journalism for which he's one of the models.

Stupid, Stupid Baby: It's Just Ripping Paper, You Stupid Baby!!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 2:14 PM

A baby erupts into uncontrollable hysterics at the sight of someone ripping paper. YOU, you stupid baby, are the reason shows like Two and a Half Men made it as long as they did! You think ripping paper is funny? Here, watch me dust mop the floor, you drooling little idiot! It'll be a laff riot!!

Stupid baby.

Today in Shitfaced Celebrity Bigotted Rants

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 1:58 PM

I'm very sorry to say that the subject of this post is Christian Dior designer John Galliano, who is being accused of antisemitism after an incident in a Paris restaurant. He denies it, and is countering with a defamation charge, but a newly discovered video in which he says he loves Hitler, and that "people like you would be dead. Your mothers, your forefathers, would all be fucking gassed." Which is going to make his denial a little bit of a tougher argument to make. Here's what's being claimed:

According to police reports, Mr Galliano told Paris University-educated Ms Bloch: ‘Dirty Jew face, you should be dead’, adding ‘shut your mouth, dirty bitch, I can’t stand your dirty whore voice.’ He then turned his anger on Mr Virgitti, who was himself protesting furiously by this time, and screamed: ‘Fucking Asian bastard, I’ll kill you!’

All of which made things a little uncomfortable for Nicole Kidman and Sharon Stone, who both wore Christian Dior to last night's Oscars. It's also bad timing for Natalie Portman, who is the spokesmodel for the line's new frangrance. She wore Rodarte last night, and there is some speculation that it was a last-minute switch due to the controversy. Oh and one more thing: The people Galliano is alleged to have insulted are not even Jewish.


Until things get sorted out, Christian Dior has suspended him.

Today in "I Believe it"

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 1:28 PM

This morning, Wikipedia listed actor and last night's Oscar presenter Kirk Douglas' age as 294.




Special Driver's License for Undocumented Immigrants?

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 1:14 PM

How's this for cause and (presumably) unintended effect?

In 2008, Oregon changed the vehicle code to require anyone who applies for a driver's license also prove their right to legally live in the US of A—forcing thousands of undocumented immigrants to keep out of the DMV and take their chances on the road without a license in their pocket.

Then last year—under the auspices of the Orwellian-sounding "Secure Communities" program—federal immigration authorities got Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties to run all jail inmates' fingerprints through a national immigration database.

The federal program is supposed to target felons and other obvious bad guys. But who's been swept up instead? People dodging MAX fares. Or driving without a license.

So... what to do? Senator Chip Shields, a Democrat representing North and Northeast Portland, has put forward an interesting solution. Senate Bill 845 would create a special class of driver's license for applicants who clearly know the rules of the road and how to drive—but just can't prove they're legally living in the United States. Unlike a regular license, the special card wouldn't work as legal ID. Rather, it would keep people who carry it from getting hauled off to jail for not having a valid license.

If approved, it'd be a novel approach—only three states give licenses to undocumented immigrants, but not in the limited way Shields has proposed. Still, it's hard to see how this threads the needle in a divided Oregon Legislature, despite the fact that Shields has at least one Republican on board, Representative Bob Jenson of Pendleton. (Although Jenson, given his voting history, isn't necessarily a bellwether of broader GOP support.) I'll update when I hear back from Shields' or Jenson's people.

Steve Wozniak on The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs

Posted by Alison Hallett on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 12:49 PM

The Apple co-founder saw Mike Daisey's The Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs and was "moved to tears," according to The Bay Citizen::

THE BAY CITIZEN: I am eager to get your impression of Mike Daisey’s show at Berkeley Rep. As you know, it’s kicked up a lot of debate in the Mac community. On Cult of Mac, editor Leander Kahney urged Mac “fanboys” to see the show. But he also said he felt guilty using his iPhone later after hearing about the working conditions in the Foxconn factory. As co-founder of Apple, what did you think?

STEVE WOZNIAK: I will never be the same after seeing that show. I cried during it and I'm crying right now. I have a seed of concern and sorrow in my head that may never go away. So many things that were so important to me seem much less important now.

The monologue, which played to sold-out crowds in Portland at the TBA festival, juxtaposes Daisey's long-time obsession with Apple products with his investigations into how those products are actually made. Daisey brought the show to Berkeley Rep in conjunction with MacWorld.

Hey, I'm Moderating a Panel About The Guild at Emerald City Comicon!

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 12:28 PM


Look at this panel that's happening on Saturday at Seattle's Emerald City Comicon!

12:00pm THE GUILD
This award-winning independent sitcom web series about a group of online gamers has grown into a phenomenon. Join creator/writer/star Felicia Day (Codex), Amy Okuda (Tinkerballa) and Wil Wheaton (Fawkes) as they discuss the current season and much more! Moderated by Erik Henriksen.

Hey, that's me! Pressure aside—I think there are gonna be like a billion hardcore Guild fans in the audience?—I'm looking forward to talking with those guys, as I'm a fan of The Guild, and the Guild comics that Day's been writing for Dark Horse are nothing short of excellent. (Preview the first issue here.) So it should be a fun discussion about the web series and the comics, not to mention a fascinating real-time experiment to see if I'll fuck it all up. (Maybe I'll accidentally call Wheaton "Wesley"? Maybe I'll loudly demand to know where my teleprompter is, only to realize, with a look of terrified panic, that there is no teleprompter? Maybe I'll pull a Chris Farley Show? Who knows? Wheeee!) If you're planning on going to Emerald City, swing by; if you're not, well, make some plans to go to Emerald City, and then swing by. I'll even let you buy me a beer after the panel!

Also, got any Guild-related questions for Day, Okuda, and/or Wheaton? Well, that works out great for me! Put your questions in the comments; if they're good, I'll happily steal them in order to make myself look smarter ask them for you.

Stay tuned to the Mercury and Blogtown for more stuff on Emerald City in the next week, too—we'll have a preview of the show in this week's paper, as well as a blog post or two this weekend, written at the show itself.

Last Chance to Join The Craftiest Craft Show in Town

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 11:58 AM

Ack! The deadline to apply to be one of the vendors in the gianormous bi-annual Crafty Wonderland show is tomorrow, y'all! This legendary event features hundreds of various makers, and millions (what, it seems like millions) of attendees. If you can hang with the crowd it's a great way to get all of your shopping done for the year (seriously, stock up for Christmas, baby showers, birthdays, whatever) with pre-selected merch made by Portland's finest. The spring edition is coming right up on May 7th. If you need a fix prior to that, don't forget the Crafty Wonderland pop-up from the holiday shopping season has stuck around at 802 SW 10th! This calls for a sasquatch tandem bike ride.


Tax Cuts VS. Cut Programs

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 11:44 AM

Thinking about the arguments that Wisconsin's budget crisis is "manufactured", this infographic posted on BlueOregon hit home. It's a breakdown of national tax cuts versus federal programs that may be discontinued. Fixing our budget crises doesn't just have to mean cutting programs or workers. It should mean making taxes fairer and closing loopholes for the super wealthy.


"Pick a Fucking Gender"

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 11:28 AM

Local queer website QPDX has posted an interesting account of getting heckled outside Gaycation, one of Holocene's most popular gay dance nights, for being trans.

The short story of the heated interaction is by Nik Rapier. Check it out:

We were standing outside Holocene, cooling down from that overheated dance floor, when you reeled out the door, steps unsteady and eyes full of malice. After looking our little group over, you apparently decided that we didn’t pass your definition of acceptable gender presentations, because you stopped right in front of us and let fly some of the more transphobic comments I’ve heard in a drunken slur.

“Pick a fucking gender,” you said, “pick a fucking gender! And fucking stick with it!”

Continue reading »

It's Happening Tonight!

Posted by Alison Hallett on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 11:14 AM


BIKES + BEER + HISTORY—You know what makes history class a lot more interesting? Beer and tater tots during the lecture. Check out tonight's History Pub about Oregon's 100-person Burley cooperative, which made $10 million a year selling bike trailers before, like any mighty empire, it fell apart. SM
Kennedy School, 5736 NE 33rd, 7 pm, FREE, all ages

—Fact: Adding the word "roller" to anything improves it tenfold. Disco becomes the roller disco of Xanadu. Derby goes from an old-timey hat to the magical experience of roller derby. So let's try it with Portland's favorite rockin' threesome, the Thermals. BLAM! Roller Thermals, the best roller-skating concert of the year. You'll need a wristband to get into the show, so follow Google's HotpotPDX Twitter account (@HotpotPDX) to find out when and where they're giving them away. CF
w/Lifesavas; Oaks Park Skating Rink, 7805 SE Oaks Park, 7 pm, FREE (w/wristband), all ages,

New Lady Gaga Video- "Born This Way"

Posted by Raquel Nasser on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 10:58 AM

Oh, look; it's the video for Lady Gaga's new single, "Born This Way." I made the mistake of watching this while eating breakfast; apparently, kaleidoscopic vulva and Lady Gaga's head covered in gooey afterbirth don't go well with scrambled eggs. Consider that your warning.

That's just the beginning, though. Once the "Manifesto of Mother Monster"—the story which I think suggests Gaga was brought into this world as an evil alien, though I'm not entirely sure, so much placenta—has ceased, she mostly just references God's creation while dancing in chainy underwear and touching herself. Typical and relatively breakfast-safe, though questionably work-safe, much like most of what Lady Gaga puts out into the world. But as the Lady doth protest; she can't help it, she was born this way.

If We Legalize Same-Sex Marriage We Will Go Extinct!

Posted by Dan Savage on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 10:44 AM

Jeffrey Kuhner at the Washington Times is worried that Americans will go extinct just like, um, Canadians:

The homosexual lifestyle signifies the triumph of neo-pagan Epicureanism. By its very nature, homosexuality cannot fulfill the primary function of sex: procreation and the reproduction of the human race. It is inherently a socially barren act. A homosexual society is a childless one—doomed to extinction.

You have to love this line of reasoning: If we don't actively discriminate against gay people then—good God!—one day everyone will be gay (because heterosexual sex and opposite-sex relationships hold so little appeal) and then we'll be living in a completely homosexual society (because there's no such thing as a straight person, only gay people who have been coerced into forming opposite-sex relationships) and soon the human race will go extinct because no one will remember which hole to stick it in when you wanna make a baby (because people—at least the people who read and write for the Washington Times—are just that stupid).

Oy. More after the jump.

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Today in Pseudo Science: Sneezing Defines Your Personality

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 10:34 AM

The internets are all excited about a new study that defines four types of sneezers.

The research is by a woman who identifies herself as a spokesperson for Benedryl so... uh... it seems completely made up. Also, her final report has some glaring punctuation errors and includes advice like what atheists are supposed to say if someone sneezes ("May humanity bring benefits to you”). But anyway, here's what Benedryl says about your sneezing personality, based on a survey of 547 people. They're kind of like horoscopes based on bodily functions:

The NICE sneezer — You tend to have a single achoo, and you are more likely to turn away when you sneeze than other types. You are warm and friendly and like a relaxed pace. The most important thing in your life is your relationships with others.

The BE RIGHT Sneezer—You are careful, and accurate. A deep thinker you always consider things before you speak. You take your time, play by the rules and wish others would do the same. You are more likely to cover your mouth when you sneeze than other types.

The GET IT DONE Sneezer —You are fast, decisive and to the point. You wish others could be the same. You will hold in your sneeze if you can and are more likely to have a big loud sneeze than other types.

The ENTHUSIASTIC Sneezer—You are a charismatic leader and influencer. You are articulate and enjoy a good conversation whether it is on the phone, over dinner or out socializing. You are more likely to have sneezes that people notice - big or multiple.

The Best (Read: Most INSANE) Charlie Sheen Quotes!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 10:13 AM

UPDATE 12:15 PM: Charlie Sheen just did a rambling, two-part live, unedited 40 minute interview in his backyard with TMZ. Watch the insanity here. ALSO: Charlie Sheen's publicist quits, so Charlie Sheen fires him. Back to the original post...

As briefly mentioned in GMN, Charlie Sheen went on a media rampage this weekend, promising to grant interviews to ABC first, then screwing them over to talk to NBC. So what? So that means we get TWICE as many nutbag Charlie Sheen quotes! Here are the best of the bunch!

From the NBC interview:

Though he claimed he has been swamped with offers for movies, Sheen said: “I am a man of my word, so I will finish the TV show. I’ll even do season 10, but at this point, [because of] psychological distress, oh, my God, it’s 3 mil an episode.” [Previously it was 2 million per—Hump]

He also again took aim at Alcoholics Anonymous, calling it a failed system developed by a “broken-down fool that was a plagiarist.” He claimed he has conquered his own drug and alcohol problems by the sheer force of his will: “I closed my eyes and made it so.”

On A.A.'s bible:
“It was written for normal people, people that aren’t special. People that don’t have tiger blood, you know, Adonis DNA.”

“I’m tired of pretending like I’m not special,” Sheen continued. “I’m tired of pretending like I’m not bitching, a total fricking rock star from Mars, and people can’t figure me out; they can’t process me. I don’t expect them to. You can’t process me with a normal brain.”

WOW!! WOW!! WOW!! And trust me, things get even better after the jump!! Here's a taste: "I am on a drug. It's called Charlie Sheen."

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