Saturday, July 29, 2006

Closest thing to a celebrity sighting I've had in awhile

So last night, I was at the Lenscrafter's across from BellSquare getting new glasses and contact lenses. The Bellevue Arts and Crafts Festival was going on right outside. While I was in my eye exam, Jen showed up to take the boy off my hands for a bit. Afterward, I wandered around the Arts and Crafts Festival with her for a bit. Right before I had to go back to Lenscrafters to get my glasses, the boy said he needed to use the bathroom. Jen took him to the closest one, in the Starbucks.

While I was taking out my trial contact lenses to wear my new glasses, Jen calls me. "You'll never guess who just walked in here!"
I hate this kind of question. "You're right," I say, "I'll never guess."
"Steve Ballmer!"

After getting my new specs, I headed over to Starwhores to join the wife and kid. She had a nice soy chai waiting for me. Sure enough, there sat Steve Ballmer, sipping a venti something. He was with a woman I would have first assumed to be his wife - but after someone he knew came in, he introduced her to them as his sister. Now, it's not like I was eavesdropping on the ol' CEO to learn this. If you've ever seen clips of him at the Company Meeting, you've heard that crazy loud voice. That's no act - that's just how he speaks. The whole shop could hear him.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Watch the House

Now that West Wing is over and done with, I had to find a new show to fixate on. So, I have latched onto House.

House is a show about Dr. Greg House, a brilliant but angry doctor, played by the talented Hugh Laurie. I had seen Hugh in the Black Adder series from his native Britain before, and found him to be a brilliant comedic actor.

In this show he has to be only slightly more serious. House is a doctor who takes the idea of detachment to the extreme - he doesn't even like to meet his patients. He is cynical and bitter, always ready with a stinging witty remark. In short, my kind of guy.

The show itself is not fantastic. The plots are very formulaic - patient comes in with bizarre mystery illness, House and his staff have to deduce from the symptoms what is going wrong, his initial diagnosis is wrong (and often nearly kills the patient), and after cajoling some secret out of the patient or their loved ones, House figures it out and saves them. And at least once per episode they show some gross surgery stuff.

The good part of this show is the interaction between the characters and the dialogue that goes on, with Dr. House always leading the way in biting cynical jokes. Hugh Laurie's lines and performance alone make the show worth watching. Add to that some interesting touches like good music, a decent supporting cast, and clever jokes, and and I have been hooked.

Anyway, enough rambling about the vagaries of my TV watching. Mattbear out.

Hi, I'm Mattbear, and I'm a Blogaholic

I have an addiction. Well, I have a number of addictions, but one of the newer ones is...blogs.

I write in my blog. Actually, now I write in two blogs - see Billy Ocean, Student Council Treasurer. I read blogs. Lots of blogs. Blogs about cool stuff, blogs about geeky stuff, blogs about politics. Even blogs about blogs. I read smart ones, I read goofy ones. I'm out of control here.

Oh well. So be it. I'll keep this addiction, it isn't killing me or making me bankrupt.

And while you're reading this, really, go check out Billy Ocean, Student Council Treasurer. Just don't ask me about the name. I really have no idea.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Today's Randomness

I've been neglecting my posting lately (aside from the rant about RocketBoom the other day), so here is a bunch of random amusing/interesting/scary stuff I've been compiling and meaning to post. Enjoy:

Doonesbury has a great message for Creationists.

Adam Carolla finally did something I thought was funny, and gave the supreme bitch Anne Coulter a come-uppance. (audio)

You're 18 years old, racing a friend at 100mph, and slam into somebody, killing them. The only thing that could make it more sucky is if said somebody happens to be foreign royalty.

Feeling like reading something naughty? There's a whole ring of blogs dedicated to writing smu...sorry, "erotica". :) Check out Dawn 'n' Dirty. (Warning: NSFW pics scattered in there)
Or maybe you'd prefer to hear Violet Blue read her essay "American Sex Ed".

If you've never heard it before, check out Last Will and Tempermant by the Frantics. (audio, thanks to Launchpad for finding this one)

Marketing, evil as it is, fascinates me. There's a great article from Business Week about the ad agency that created the awesomely funny Unpimp ze Auto ads for Volkswagen. Speaking of which, I really want one of these. (thanks to Will for the article)

If you like watching amateur-made short films, check out Some are great, some are good, some...not so good.

That's all for now. More later. Mattbear out.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

RocketBoom is dead to me.

If you've ever checked out you know it's a video blog ("vlog", I guess, if you want to get into ever-more-ridiculous slang) hosted by hottie Amanda Congdon.

At least it was, until an apparent disagreement with the show's co-creator caused her to leave/get fired/whatever. So I shall no longer watch the RocketBoom.

You see, RocketBoom was amusing in that it was just a video version of a blog, presenting random internet memes and funny news stories. It wasn't particularly timely - I usually read the day before on BoingBoing or Metafilter about whatever RB was presenting. So the real reason to watch it was Amanda, who at least presented it in an enteraining and easy-on-the-eyes manner.

But now RB has replaced Amanda with someone definitely not as hot. That is why RocketBoom is dead to me. If I'm going to watch a video about what got posted on BoingBoing yesterday, it better be done by Amanda.

Of course, Amanda, who was already getting some attention I am sure from various TV entities, is now getting interviewed all over the place, including the evil Scarborough Country.

Internet "fame" is a bizarre thing. It is fleeting, and mostly of minimal profit, Penny Arcade not withstanding. And your fans are a subset of the population, so you'll never become a household name, but you'll still get recognized anywhere there are techies and geeks. And to them, you may be more famous than those in the so-called "mainstream" types of media. I would know Amanda on sight, but I'm not sure I could pick Katie Couric out of a line up even though I know her name. I wish I could explain better the differences I see between Internet fame and, say, TV fame, but it is hard to define. Ms. Congdon has already gotten the internet variety, and hopefully she will get her wish and get some of the "mainstream" variety too.

Good luck Amanda. And RocketBoom, fuck you.