Saturday, December 15, 2007

Favorite Songs of 2007, Part 2

[See Part 1 here]

You know what I can't stand? Lists by music critics of the Year's Best Songs that always include the year's most popular songs near the top, as if any list like this is going to be definitive and authoritative, rather than just based on personal tastes. Rolling Stone picks Rihanna's "Umbrella" as the #3 song this year...

Really? Cause the thing is...that's definitely the year's most ubiquitous song, but it's totally overrated. Boring, even. And I doubt that it's any Rolling Stone writers sincere choice for Song of the Year. Even if you're a big R&B fan, there are better songs out there. That's just the one that hit big this summer, and that boasts the largest Ringtone sales figures.

Anyway, let's continue with my list, that does not include Rihanna's "Umbrella."

Celebration, "Evergreen"

David Vandervelde, "Murder in Michigan"

Another that's definitely among my favorite songs of the year. This song is so evocative, both of another era in songwriting and of a certain kind of feeling, between adoration and pity. Brilliant.

Deerhunter, "Spring Hall Convert"

It starts out with what sounds like a waterless bong rip, totally appropriate for a song that eventually turns into a swirling psychedelic trip out session.

Dinosaur Jr., "Back To Your Heart"

Dino Jr. was BACK this year, and they still sound FANTASTIC. So many reunions just feel like an opportunity for nostalgia, but these guys clearly have more great albums in them. "Beyond," title included, felt like a new beginning.

Eagle*Seagull, "I Don't Know If People Have Hated Me, But I Have Hated People"

I heard a song from this band last year - the very Cure-ish "Photograph" - and liked it, but this track blew me away completely. It's the piano - does it every time.

Everything, Now!, "Take a Gawk at the Weird Side"

Feist, "My Moon My Man"

My favorite song from Feist's amazing "The Reminder"

Fiery Furnaces, "Ex-Guru"

This is The Fiery Furnaces at their fuzzy, infectious best. Their 2007 release, "Widow City," is a true return to form and a surefire bet for my Top Albums list.

Great Lake Swimmers, "Where In the World Are You"

I can only take these guys in small doses - their music gets a bit too precious after a while. So intimate, you almost need to ESCAPE. But this is just a beautiful song. It should totally be in a sad movie...

Immaculate Machine, "Dear Confessor"

Straight-forward, catchy, basic indie rock style right here. This song could totally be popular if it were on the radio. (I especially like the interaction between the male and female voices - like a better, more direct Rainer Maria.)

[Go on to Part 3]

Friday, December 14, 2007

Favorite Songs of 2007, Part 1

Usually, I come up with a list of my favorite 20 or so songs out of a given year. But now that I'm regularly using iTunes at both work and home, it's relatively easy to compile a somewhat more thorough, extensive list of the music I've listened to and enjoyed in 2007. So I'm going to just post a long collection of songs, all the ones I've really been into this year, over the course of several posts. (As many as it takes, really.) Then, when that's all done, I'll post my Top Albums of the Year list (which I promise to limit to 21.)

So, here we alphabetical order...which means this wouldn't make a particularly good mixtape...

!!!, "Bend Over Beethoven"

The 1900s, "Everybody's Got a Collection"

I like this song because it sounds really pleasant and up-tempo, and then you listen to the lyrics and discover it's pretty mean-spirited. Even cruel.

Aesop Rock, "Catacomb Kids"

My favorite track on Aesop's considerable "None Shall Pass" record.

Apostle of Hustle, "My Sword Hand's Anger"

This sounds very much like a Broken Social Scene song, which is always a good thing. The hook is near-perfect. The whole album, "National Anthem of Nowhere," was really solid.

Bat for Lashes, "What's a Girl to Do"

Definitely one of my favorite songs this year. It's got the kind of lonely, desolate, even eerie sound that really appeals to me for some reason. Plus, one of the year's coolest videos.

Black Kids, "I'm Not Gonna Teach You"

Fantastic stuff. They've got a very catchy, '80s synth-pop kind of sound that takes me back to my childhood, really.

The Boggs, "Forts"

This sounds like music made by inebriated, dizzy people late at night in a forest somewhere. It kinds of reminds me of a slightly lower-key, less insane Man Man. Maybe what Man Man sounded like right before they ate the garbage bag full of magic mushrooms.

Broken Social Scene and Kevin Drew, "Lucky Ones"

Buck 65, "Benz"

I only listened to this because Cadence Weapon guests on it, but I liked the song enough to check out Buck 65's whole record. Canadian Rap FTW!

CALLA, "Bronson"

I was kind of obsessed with this song for a while. Really, just that first little part..."I know a thing or two abooooouuuuuutttt..." Not sure why.

[On to Part 2! Or skip ahead to Part 3!]

Greatest Achievement in Headline History?

I'm going to go ahead and say...yes.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Coming Attractions...

I'm not at liberty to discuss details, but we've got a Mahalo Daily coming for you people...It's really going to be something.

Actually, I know of two notable Mahalo Daily's we have planned for the near-future. One features yours truly, another features an exciting special guest.

No, not Tommy Wiseau, though that WAS pretty awesome.

I can say no more at this time, but I'm pretty sure both episodes will be up before the New Year. Look forward to them, starting...NOW.

Pure Unadulterated Pain

This "12 Days of Christmas" parody, produced by the National Republican Senatorial Committee, may be the most blisteringly awful attempt at an Internet video meme I have ever seen. This makes that creepy Ginger Kid from NewsBusted look like George Carlin.

Okay, you didn't get through the whole thing. Naturally, I don't blame you. It's impossible to watch even a second of this video and not immediately enter a Simon Cowell impression. "I thought it was absolutely excruciating. Please, please, do the world a favor and never sing again. Actually, after giving it some thought, you'd probably be better off not speaking either. You could hurt yourself."

So, to spare you the need to sit through the whole thing (as I did, dear reader, for your benefit...), here are the 12 things "the liberals" gave to the NRSC for Christmas:

12 Senators Failing

- Here, they put photos of 12 Senators up, but it's so fast and poorly Photoshopped, you can't actually tell who they are. I picked out Kerry, and that's it. And bear in mind, I follow news and politics for a living. If I'm having trouble spotting faces, how does a person who does something non-news-media-related all day have any chance?

11 Percent Approval

- Not funny in any real way, which you'd think would be the point, but at least this one is true...sorta. The reason Congress has such a low approval rating is that they won't stand up to the Republican President, the thing they were voted into office to do only last year. But I don't want to begrudge the video this's the only point they actually succeed in making.

10 Paychecks Burning

- Huh? The Democrats want to light your paycheck on fire?

90 Thousand Freezing

- This is a reference to that money that was stashed in Democratic Rep. William Jefferson's freezer. Which happened quite some time ago (in politics time, an eternity), and was only national news for a few days. In Louisiana, they'll get this joke. Otherwise, not so much. (Plus, not funny, and they have to change "9" to "90,000" just to make it fit into the song.)

No More Secret Ballots

- This is a TWOFER. It doesn't make any sense and it doesn't use an 8, which is the entire point of parodying this song! Why do a "12 Days of Christmas" riff if you're not even going to fucking bother following the format!?!!!?!?! This doesn't bother me as a liberal, but as a Weird Al fan. It's like writing a send-up of The Raven that isn't in trochaic octameter. (You know it when you hear it...)

"Once upon a midnight dreary
While I sat around in my room smoking bong loads in my underpants waiting for my Chinese food to arrive
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore..."

The effect, as they say, is lost.

700 Billion in New Spending

- This line also sucks, because they change 7 to "700 Billion" and it's so long that the singer can barely get it out in time. Also, it's kind of a weaksauce argument coming from these Republican scumbags who are wasting our tax dollars on corporate giveaways. Sometimes just losing billions at a time. For real! Just losing your money to graft and fraud!

6 Troop Funding Cuts

- The woman who sings this line sounds gravely ill, and the effect gets worse with each repetition. Also, this is incredibly disingenuous and manipulative. They're referring to attempts to end this seemingly endless, futile and bloody disaster as "troop funding cuts," as if Democrats have proposed simply abandoning wide swaths of the American soldiers in the desert with IOUs, peanut butter sandwiches and swift kicks in the ass. There have been attempts to cut off new funds to continue the war into more and more months and years. To my knowledge, no "leave 'em in the Middle East to rot whilst we move in on their wives" bills have been offered by the Democratic Congress.

Bear in mind, I don't particularly like this Democratic Congress. They're a bunch of privileged, timid, bureaucratic assholes who don't seem to give two shits about what their constituents or anyone else wants, and seem determined to fight only to maintain the status quo. But these arguments are just pathetic and dishonest in equal measure. Plus, they're delivered in song. Shrill, monotonous, nigh on unlistenable song.

Hillary's Woodstock Museum

- And here's where the song reaches maximum crapulence. It doesn't contain the 5 in "Five Golden Rings," it refers to a non-scandal that those who don't comment daily on Confederate Yankee will miss, and it's delivered in the most bleating, eardrum-shattering, hope-meltingly odious tone my ears have ever had the displeasure of encountering. This diva's final, otherworldly "Hillary's Woodstock Museum" will continue to haunt my nightmares for years to come.

The joke is, Hillary had asked for $1 million in taxpayer monies to build a Woodstock Museum in her state (not coincidentally, the state in which Woodstock occurred.) I don't actually think this is a bad idea. In fact, I'm kind of surprised there isn't already a Museum there commemorating the most famous rock concert of all time.

I mean, if some Tennessee hillbilly asked for $1 million to completely renovate and restore the Grand Ol' Opry, you think there'd be rioting in the streets or a commercial about it being such an awful idea. Probably not. (I've never been, and I don't really care about country music, but I don't think that project would be out of line either.)

The point is, this is the best Congressional Republicans can do in making their case for re-election next year. The Best They Can Do. Silly pet projects, ancient scandals, non-sequiteur (No more secret ballots? I still have no clue what they mean with that one...) and outright misrepresentations, all delivered in such an obnoxious, amateurish manner, no one could possibly sit through the whole thing, even like-minded partisans.

NOTE: They actually wrote an explanation key in the YouTube "About this Video" section, obviously figuring that viewers would be confused. But even after reading their explanation of the "No More Secret Ballots" line, I still don't know what the hell they're talking about.

(Big Labor payback for union bosses)


4 bucks a gallon

- At least they got a four in there...I'll give them that. Still, not quite sure how this is the fault of Congressional Democrats. More like trigger-happy Republican presidents starting needless wars in the places where they keep all the oil.

Al Franken ranting

- Can't help but 3. Just sad, really. You know what, Republicans? I'm going to GIVE YOU this one...

"3 Cops a-Slapping"

You remember, how Cynthia McKinney slapped that cop around when he stopped her in the Capitol? And look, it has a 3 in it! Just like the original song!

But the best part of this line is the explanation in the sidebar:

(Angry Hollywood liberal)

Yes, I mean, who could forget Franken's classic work on "Saturday Night Live," a Hollywood institution shot every week in the heart of Los Angeles, California. (Don't believe that whole "Live, from New York..." bit. It's just more of that baffling Hollywood liberal irony.)

2 liberal Udalls

- Again, I read the news every day, all day, at work, so I'm vaguely aware that there are some guys up for Congressional seats in 2008 named Udall. I can't imagine more than 1% of Americans (and that's probably too high) are aware of this fact. They do not need to be. No one needs to be. It is, at this point, totally insignificant to everyone's life.

Was this just desperation to work a two in there? Because they obviously weren't worried about that shit when it came to 3 or 5. (Seriously, how many people do you think it took to write this song? Was it more than 1/8 of one person? Because if so, that's too many.)

Also, in case you didn't watch this (and let's face couldn't have...) and forget how the original goes, 2 comes at the very very beginning, which means it's repeated 11 times. Hearing a bad joke poorly sung once kind of sucks. Hearing a bad joke poorly sung 11 times is like watching your grandmother and a litter of puppies get burned alive in a Bessemer Converter. 11 times.

And a tax hike for every family!

- As a single man, I have to tell you...I'm strongly in favor of a tax hike for most families. Fuck you all, I gots to get mine. No one's ever after my vote. Not once has a politician ever attempted to reach out to the slothful 20-something single urban male. Not once. And I could be bought...pretty easily. Way easier than these NASCAR dads, who have a list of demands a mile long and some of whom seem to love Fred Thompson, so God knows what the hell is wrong with that crowd.

But the slothful 20-something single urban male is a voter without a representative. Build me a low-cost bullet train from here to Vegas, I'm yours. Legalize it, you've got my vote for at least a decade. Stop using my money to put up billboards advising mothers to talk to their children about not having sex early and often, your ideas will intrigue me and I will subscribe to your newsletter. Pander to me for once, dammit!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


So, drop what you're doing and go to Angry Ken immediately. My friend and fellow Mahalonian, Veronica, has live-blogged last night's "Hills" finale/reunion/thing and it's absolutely fantastic. I've been telling her she needs her own blog for a long time now, and this only once again confirms my theory. Just a taste...

Frankie Delgado just walked in and the show came back on, its pretty funny each time the show starts back they make sure somebody walks on the carpet so it can look like we are yelling for them. Brody ran up to him and damn I wouldnt mind being in between those two hot pieces of ass. (Ken: Stop!)

oh yah Ken took a picture of brody and I, and it came out like shit (thats totally Ken’s fault)

Jen Bunney just walked in, and I can smell the skank from here…the nost she has is made for a 5 year old. her and miss hilton must have gone to the same plastic surgeon…also she has some gnarly bruises on her legs, somebody had a kinky night


The Golden Compass

The Golden Compass, the first film to be made from Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy of fantasy books, feels a lot like that first "Harry Potter" film. A frightened Chris Columbus had a ridiculous amount of hype and expectation to live up to, so he carefully made sure to include as much material from the novel as humanly possible. Tell the story in exactly the same way, so as not to offend the die-hards.

It makes sense if you're adapting a juggernaut like Sorcerer's Stone, but I'm not sure Chris Weitz had to take the same tack with Pullman's books. Sure, these stories have many, many devoted fans. They're very good fantasy books - they're going to have devoted fan followings. But if the entire point is to open these stories up to a mass audience, greater liberties can be taken.

The frenzied pace kicks in immediately. We meet Lyra (Dakota Blue Richards), a presumed orphan living under the care of the faculty of Jordan College, and almost immediately, she's on the move. Even though several of her schoolyard chums will become important later on in the film, we get to know them in a flash, during a chase scene, no less. I understand that this follows roughly the plotline of the novel's first chapter, but that's a book. A single chapter's worth of prose can obviously give us more information and insight into these kids and their world than 4 minutes of action-oriented screen time.

Lyra's mysterious Uncle, the esteemed scholar Lord Asriel (Daniel Craig), has shown up and announced, controversially, that the universe is held together by dust, and that by manipulating this dust, he can visit parallel universes. He also gives Lyra a magical Golden Compass (otherwise known as an alethiometer), made with this crazy universe dust, that can answer any question truthfully provided you can understand its symbol code.

All of this flies in the face of the Doctrines of the Magisterium, a brutal authority-religion run by severe British actors Derek Jacobi and Christopher Lee. (Their Evil Staff Meeting is one of the film's best scenes, far more in line with the tone of the books than the surrounding material. Also, "Evil Staff Meeting" would be a great name for a short film, and I intend to start writing such a project immediately.)

So the Magisterium send one of their agents, Marisa Coulter (Nicole Kidman, in To Die For perky-evil mode) to get Lyra and the alethiometer. This, of course, is really just the prelude to the real story, which involves witches and armored bears and kidnapped Gyptian children and spirit-animals that follow you around and offer advice called daemons.'s a cool book...

Unwisely, Weitz (who directed and wrote the screenplay, and whose past credits include and About a Boy and American Pie) tries to fit this entire novel's worth of characters and incidents into 2 hours. It's barely possible. So, as a consequence, the whole film feels rushed. (I can't imagine everyone involved didn't know this.)

We can't slow down to take in anything about this alternate reality universe because we've got to hustle to the next location and meet the next amazing new species. The film's not difficult to follow, as the storytelling's still quite linear, but it's too busy to build any real momentum. We don't grow to care about anyone or anything because we only have a few quick moments to get to know them.

Take the witches (please!) They come in so late in the story that Weitz has essentially run out of time. We need a big climax, and pronto. So one witch (Eva Green) floats down to visit Lyra, deliver some much-needed exposition, then flies away, to return briefly during a battle scene and then hang around at the end as if she's earned Main Character status. Who the hell are these witches? What do they care about the kidnapped children and the bears? It would be as if the elves in Lord of the Rings just showed up at the final battle in Return of the King. "Oh, hey, there's elves in Middle Earth, too! Did you see those talking trees? They're weird. Okay, let's go kill these guys!"

Sam Elliott, playing the friendly pilot who helps Lyra along her way, gets a few intensely difficult scenes to play, essentially explaining a portion of the movie to the protagonist. "Oh, hey there, little girl. Why, did you know everything you needed to know about this strange new location in which you've arrived? Shucks, you've come to the right place."

It's too bad, really, because these are good actors and you can tell they're ready to give these parts their all, but they get no time in which to establish anything but cartoon personalities. (Which is okay for Ian McKellan, who's voicing a cartoon bear.)

Dakota Blue Richards is really terrific as Lyra; some of the best scenes in the film are the early ones in which she established the young girl's headstrong, adventurous spirit. She's stubborn and, of course, brave but not precocious, though there's a slyness to her expression at times that exceeds her years. She even manages to build a reasonably believable relationship with a CG-animated bear voiced by Ian McKellan. Yet she becomes little more than a prop when all is said and done, bounced around by this tropical storm of a screenplay until she winds up floating off into the middle-distance, talking excitedly about the events we will see in the next thrilling episode.

Weitz has kept all the incident, but radically changed the tone. What is a fairly dark novel has become much lighter fare, more upbeat and humorous, which is fine. (The rating, I would guess, is for one shot of bear-related violence, and it's actually pretty unnecessary.) You can't expect this kind of big-budget holiday family fantasy film to retain all the dark edges of a weird Englishman's fiction. But if he was willing to shift the books to this degree, to turn a frequently intense, occasionally estoric series of atheist-themed novels into a mainstream, gingerly anti-authoritarian film franchise...why not trim some of the plot so you can actually make it into a real movie? A more cinematic flair, some time to let situations develop and establish relationships, would have done amazing things for this movie. As it stands, it's a decent entertainment, better than Narnia but not by enough.

Monday, December 10, 2007

If You Were a Creationist, You'd Be Homeschooled by Now

I love Creationist videos. They're my favorite type of YouTube content, barely edging out hilarious trailer remixes, Tourette's Guy and 2 Girls 1 Cup. (No link on that one...consider yourself lucky...)

In the past, I've linked to such wacky Fundie hijinks as "Moron Uses Woeful Banana Metaphor" and "Moron Confuses Evolution with Spontaneous Generation." Now, I'm pleased to present to you: "Huge Moron Confuses Evolution with Cosmology."

This one is really something special. I'm not sure a single thought expressed in this 3 minute documentary makes any logical sense or holds up to any sort of scrutiny.

I mean, you don't need to actually know anything about astronomy to know this makes no sense. A child would understand that it's completely, bafflingly wrong.

Of course, all of these videos attempting to validate Creationism by poking holes in specific scientific theories are fundamentally flawed. This video opens with a whopper of an assumption - either the universe was created by a Big Bang, or it was fashioned by an intelligent, Judeo-Christian God. Surely, there are other possibilities. Maybe the universe is just an elaborate computer program, a la The Matrix. Maybe we all exist inside a tiny particle of a wholly different universe. Perhaps the universe is actually cyclical, and it breaks down and then reforms as part of some far larger mechanism too elaborate for us to grasp.

Naturally, if you can only comprehend circumstances in this limiting, binary fashion - God or Bing Bang - you would get confused and fail to make clear, concise arguments. This way of thinking is just wrong, so it would lead to wrong conclusions. Under this method of reasoning, if you could disprove the Big Bang Theory, you would then PROVE the alternative - God. But of course, science doesn't work that way. If you disproved the Big Bang Theory, you would just move along to the next-most-reasonable hypothesis and start testing it out. You wouldn't just throw up your hands, say "God musta did it!" and get back to praying.

Most complicated answers in the world of science do not come wrapped in neat little black-and-white, this way or the other packages. It's an ongoing learning process, with each generation getting a bit smarter than the last.

This disembodied narrator just makes outlandish claim after outlandish claim, with no support for his contentions whatsoever. There's no scientific journey of discovery here; just pure authoritarianism. It's this way cause I says so! Just listen to the language:

"Since about 98% of the Sun is hydrogen or helium, Earth, Mars, Venus and Mercury should have similar compositions."

SHOULD? Who uses "should" in this way when referring to natural phenomenon. Using an innately human, frequently foolish "common sense" mechanism, yes, I can see how one would assume that the sun and the surrounding planets would have similar chemical compositions. But there's nothing scientific about that assumption...That's why it's called "common sense." It's common to all of us, even those with no background in these sorts of questions.

Someone who's a bit more educated and well-read on the subject might try to figure out why the Sun is made up of different chemicals than Mercury, hoping the answer gets us a bit closer to understanding all our fundamental questions about the nature of things.

I'm just saddened by the kind of mind that works the other way, that attempts to erase these questions out of existence by falling back on an easy answer. ("God done it!") A mind that, in fact, gets upset when others try to answer these questions, and posts videos online about how these questions should be ignored or ascribed to a childish fantasy.

I also don't find this answer any more satisfying than not having any answer at all. Why is it impossible that the universe would have formed like this, with Mercury being composed of different substances than the Sun, but a thoughtful God would have arranged things this way? Oh, some planets orbit clockwise and others counter-clockwise? That must have been God! Huh? Are we really so insecure as a species, that we need to pretend to grasp all this stuff right now? We need to make up answers to fill in every gap left by our imperfect understanding?

Also, the video says that the formation of a large gaseous planet like Jupiter poses an insurmountable obstacle for "evolutionists," which may be the silliest sentence I have ever heard, ever.

First of all, evolutionists don't really give the formation of Jupiter much thought. I'm pretty sure Darwin had absolutely nothing to say about Jupiter's formation. These guys hate Evolution so much, it's literally spilling over into every other scientific discipline.

Also, as far as I know, an observation ("Jupiter is a large, gaseous planet located relatively far from the Sun") cannot be an "insurmountable obstacle" for scientists. If an observation genuinely violates a scientific principle, and the observation can be demonstrated reliably, then the original principle will be amended. This is why you rarely meet any phrenologists. The fact that THIS HASN'T HAPPENED yet to our present understanding of the universe does not indicate that it is 100% absolutely definitely true. But it does mean it is the best theory we have at the present time.

I suppose a certain simplistic mindset can't handle that level of uncertainty, so they have to make 3 minute videos assuring all of us that uncertainty doesn't exist. But of does. Fucking deal with it.

[Hat tip: Sadly, No!]

Indiana Jones and the Fiery Cartoon Background

Check out the new poster for "Indiana Jones 4," aka "Indiana Jones and the Awkward, Overlong Title."

I like it. Of course, it's by Drew Struzan, who designed all the other Indy posters, so it has a lot of nostalgia value for old-skool fans. But it's also just a cool looking image. Harrison's got kind of a weird expression on in this one, though...It's a bit too kindly, like he wants to take you out to get a nice bite to eat and catch up on how you're doing in the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, not fight Nazis or Greasers or Communist Nazi Greasers or whomever the villain's going to be this time around.

Still, I'll take it.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Going to Pink's With Orson Welles

My friend Julia loaned me this book, "Talk to Her," a collection of interviews with artists, musicians and celebrities. There's an amazing brief essay in here in which a guy who worked as Orson Welles' personal assistant for a few years in the late '70s and early '80s recalls their relationship. Highly recommended reading for any fans of Welles or just good stories about Hollywood and filmmaking.

Here's my favorite part. Welles and the narrator are going out for a bite to eat, but Welles unfortunately has no money, his wallet having been stolen from his dressing room at the "Tonight Show" earlier that evening.

"Anyhow, I told him I had 12 dollars and he said, 'Great, let's go to Pink's,' which was a cheap hot dog stand he liked. As we were driving along he suddenly asked me to pull over and said, 'I have an extra pair of pants in the truck and there's probably some money in the pockets.' He found another eight dollars and said, 'Then it's the International House of Pancakes.' We were just about to pull into the parking lot when I suddenly remembered that I'd received my first credit card in the mail that day. He was ecstatic. 'Why didn't you say so!' he said. 'That means it's Don the Beachcomer!,' which was his favorite restaurant. So we went to Don's and when we walked in everyone greeted him, he was shown to his favorite table, and they brought him his gold, engraved chopsticks, which were enshrined in a case in the middle of the room with the chopsticks of other famous people. After he ordered, he said to the waiter, 'My son here would love to have the same thing as me' - he was in a very generous, emotional mood."

The interview with Guy Maddin is really worthwhile as well. But that Welles passage seriously made me well up...I almost need a tissue here...

We Love Websites with Hawaiian-Sounding Names

Hulu is NBC and News Corp's attention to create a video website. I signed up for the beta AGES AGO and just got my invite today.

It's pretty cool. Very clear video with perfect quality sound, and they have whole episodes of stuff like "Family Guy," "30 Rock," "The Simpsons" and even "Heroes." Plus, a lot of shorts, the kind of content that gets pulled from YouTube quickly whenever anyone dares put it up. Like this:

But my favorite feature is the "Custom Clip." You can take just a portion of any video and embed only the part that you want. Which means I can do this:

That's not bad.