Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Took me a while, but I came up with a TUESDAY TOP FIVE

Back in college, I used to read THE DAILY NORTHWESTERN pretty regularly. It passed the time in, say, that geology class I took to fill my science requirement. I even worked there a while, and so I knew a lot of the people.

One thing that used to entertain my pals and me was when a new columnist at the Daily would write his or her weekly post about how hard it was to write a column. Classic prose, usually. And more or less an advertisement for, "I've got no idea what I should be talking about, so I'm going to bitch about having 18 inches devoted to my opinion." Or something like that.

Well, joke's on me. Had trouble coming up with my Top Five today. Had to do actual work at the office until something came to me. Heartbreaking, really.

But I came up with it, and here it is. In the more or less quick-hit version I'm trying to preserve in the blog in 2007.

5) DREAMGIRLS. Usually when Our Woman in LA tells me that it's time to go see a musical in the movie theater, I'm more than a little hesitant. Like a dog feels when it's "vet time." But I liked this. Good performances, good music, and a fun watch. The girl who got buzzed off American Idol can really sing. Eddie Murphy turns in a lot more than just the James Brown imitation I was expecting.

Good enough that I considered getting online and wikipedia'ing the show, Diana Ross, and all the old Motown stars - just to piece together which parts of the movie were true and false. That desire faded before I got home, but still a good movie.

4) Monday Night TV. I've talked about these shows separately, and so it's probably lame for me to even mention. But basically Monday night now offers me both 24 and STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP. Which means that one night a week, my television cup runneth over.

That is, if they get away from all the romance subplots on STUDIO 60 and get back to Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford kvetching. If I have to see much more of those guys worrying about their love lives and juggling their "will they or won't they" romances, then I'll drop kick that show faster than LOST.

But for now, all good on Monday nights.

3) TALLADEGA NIGHTS. OK, this isn't news. I know it's on DVD now. I know Blockbuster has like a million copies of it. But it's funny - really, really freakin' funny.

Even though Our Woman in LA was reared in North Carolina, neither of us are NASCAR fans. But we are fans of the American id. We watched AMERICAN IDOL last week, after all. We've been to restaurants like Applebees and the Olive Garden. Not lately, but we've been there.

So the movie spoke to us. Or actually, sang to us. Sang to us like a drunken frat boy howling the lyrics of "Chains of Love" by Erasure to the Tri-Delt he's trying to take up . . . well, you get the picture.

Anyway, it's really funny.

2) Clive Owen as Philip Marlowe. Announced this week, VARIETY is reporting that Clive Owen, who turned down the James Bond franchise, is developing an adaptation of one of the novels from the late, extremely great Raymond Chandler and his noir detective Philip Marlowe.

Nobody seems to know which book or which short story. Doesn't really matter. You can count on mean streets, duplicitous dames, and the like. And just when the story runs out of steam, you can count on a guy stomping into the room with his gun drawn.

That's just how they write 'em in Chandler's world.

Yeah, I know Clive's British. I know Marlowe's a Santa Rosa kid walking down the mean streets of Los Angeles like some sort of tarnished angel. But I mean, look at the guy.

You're telling me that guy's never been punched in the face? That he wouldn't take Moose Malloy's money to look for little lost Velda? That he wouldn't play the Sternwood sisters against one another.

Face it, the guy's hard boiled.

1) A little bit of political happiness came my way this week. Which means, I'm about to say something liberal here. You might want to avert your eyes.

Last week, I posted a little ditty about Global Warming, and how maybe we should just get around to accepting that it exists.

Turns out, some scientists agree with me:


Oh yeah, and some CEOs - guys who probably sometimes make a buck from fossil fuels:


Now, normally at this point, I'd make a joke about the Glen Becks and others out there who think that Global Warming's caused by fall foliage or whatever. Who think evolution is a theory, gay marriage is an abomination, and that we really have to keep those Harry Potter books away from our kids.

But I'll save that. Who knows when I'll next have trouble posting a top five?

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