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January 11 - 16, 1999

Minneapolis-area Cool Show Alert: Machinery Hill at the Cedar Cultural Center on Saturday night. (It's tempting me to leave the house, we shall see).

TV Alerts for the Weekend:
New Homicide: Life on the Street (Friday, 9pm CST, NBC)
Classic Homicide on CourtTV four times a day
Letterboxed Tora! Tora! Tora! on AMC (11pm CST Saturday)
New X-Files, Practice on Sunday night (FOX and ABC).

TV Heads Up!: (stock up on videotapes already)
Monday, January 18 is Cary Grant's birthday, American Movie Classics airs the following CG movies to celebrate: I Was a Male Warbride, Monkey Business, People Will Talk, Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, and The Grass is Greener. They'll air a letterboxed version of The Grass is Greener at 1am (CST) Monday night/Tuesday morning.

Turner Classic Movies also celebrates Grant's birthday on Monday with airings of Sylvia Scarlett, Bringing Up Baby, Gunga Din, In Name Only, and The Philadelphia Story.

I'll be posting more about this on Monday. With IMDB links, too.

That http2 thing that was mentioned in Scripting News and Robot Wisdom today does seem to work with Opera 3.5, for what it's worth. And I registered "laurel" so http2//laurel should bring you to my page.

An oldie, but goodie?: The Rocky and Bullwinkle Picture Show.

Back in the days when Commodore computers roamed the earth, I was addicted to Infocom games. I still play 'em, I'm still trying to solve Deadline. You can play Infocom games on any platform, really (see the Infocom link above); I've discovered the joys of playing Infocom games on my Palm Pilot.

I spent far too much time looking at the infocom section of the interactive fiction archive, there's cool stuff there. They've got lots of old articles, old issues of "The New Zork Times" and pictures of some of the original packaging. And hints and and and well, it's neat.

I couldn't agree with Joyce Millman more:

The discovery of a corpse prompts the reopening of a 10-year-old murder investigation on Homicide: Life on the Street (10 p.m. Fri., NBC). Also, Giardello orders Ballard and Falsone to stop seeing each other or one of them will have to transfer. Can it be Falsone? Please?

Show airs 9pm CST on NBC, last week's episode was actually quite good. Certainly a cut above most of the episodes aired this season. I have high hopes for this new episode 'cuz it looks like Munch and Meldrick are featured. And I hope Gee kicks both Ballard and Falsone out of Homicide (a girl can dream, can't she?)

Lego Denies Connection With Artist's Concentration Camp Kit [startribune]

Three Homicide scripts nominated by the Writers Guild of America for Outstanding Achievement in Episodic Drama (also one script/episode each from ER, The Practice, Law and Order, and Nothing Sacred). Nominated Homicide episodes: "The Subway," "Finnegan's Wake," and "Saigon Rose." Other nominations for TV and Radio were announced, too (of course). [hlotslinks]

Today's SACK comic at the startribune sums up the whole net.rush on Wall Street.

James Lileks observes:

Every day consists of forgetting to say thank you to someone.

Michael Finley on this whole impeachment mess, and the email he (and plenty of others) sent:

Now it registers on me that our national outrage was merely a trend to our leaders. Trends, and the 24-hour news cycle, are what drive our government now. Voting booths are a quaint anachronism. As former GOP Sen. Alan Simpson said after the vote to impeach, "The attention span of the American people is what the latest movies are."

In this version, we aren't individual people, the way Jefferson envisioned. We're more like a wave of electrons, consuming and voting with the shifts in the magnetic field. E-mail is just an incidental spray of particles, easily digested and deleted.

TV Alerts for Thursday:
New Cupid (ABC, 8pm CST)
Gillian Anderson on The Daily Show (10pm CST, Comedy Central) (TV Ultra Pick)
Tom Hanks and Melina Kanakaredes on The Tonight Show
Mira Sorvino and Greg Germann ("Richard Fish" from Ally) on Late Night (NBC)
Harlan Ellison on The Late Late Show with Tom Snyder (CBS)

For what it's worth, the aforementioned John Wesley Harding song isn't the reason I decided on the domain name, there are other reasons (some of which involve-- of course-- other domains which were taken already). Still, I like the song. Fits my mood some days.

Salon interview with Sean Penn:

Most of those movies that I think you're talking about, there's a silliness to that I just can't get by. I'm not sure how much movies mean to people, finally, anyway. On a good day I think they are moved. But I can't sit there in a hotel room away from home and family, looking at a cottage cheese ceiling and be two weeks into a movie and say, "What am I doing here?" I think that's what I avoid -- that feeling of going through life making money and being famous. It didn't seem like much of a life.

Star Wars Stuff:

JediNet presents some supposed major spoilers for Episode I. I didn't enter and read them, not sure I'm ready for that just yet. So I can't say how major they are. I'm busy happily reading the new issue of Vanity Fair with lotsa pretty Star Wars pictures and an interview with George Lucas.

It's kind of like a weblog, ION The Web reports on what's new and different at various Star Wars websites. A well-designed site.

Also found NewsDroid which claims to be "Headline News for Star Wars fans."

I'm terribly jealous that my friend Al is running a webserver on a Mac SE/30.

It's like watching a game of telephone.

When Non-Technical People Write Tech Stories:
Here's the first story I saw about Sarah Flanagan's new encryption algorithm. And here's the Associated Press story. What the? It's one thing to simplify a story, it's another thing to change the meaning. Well, it's certainly misleading.

AP interview with Joseph Fiennes:

"I have such a passion for Shakespeare that I didn't want to sell him out as a cheap cartoon character with floppy hair and that goatee," Fiennes says. "I wanted him modern and sexy and dynamic and slightly enigmatic. Not a Disney idea of what he is."

In other words, a makeover of Elizabethan proportions.

"Look, he was a genius. Yes, of course. But he was also a gypsy and a wheeler-dealer and he stole and he plagiarized. He was a survivor," Fiennes says. "He was a normal young guy who was exactly my age when he wrote these plays. He drank, he fought, he fell madly in love, he cursed. We have to humanize him."

Someone has rated toilet paper, and put their reviews (?) on the web, of course.

Bwhahahaha! I've avoided posting Furby related stuff thus far, but this is too cool (and if it's in everyone elses logs today, oh well, it's just too good to resist):

Thousands of families across the United States could be harbouring potentially dangerous double agents - also known as Furbies.

The NSA - a furby-free zone The Furby, a highly sought-after Christmas toy in 1998, is now a high-ranking public enemy and has been banned from National Security Agency premises in Maryland.

Here's the CNN version, too.

Another of the "lost" episodes of Doctor Who is found:

Thirty years after the last print was thought to have been destroyed, a copy of the first episode of the 1965 William Hartnell story "The Crusade, The Lion", has been rediscovered in New Zealand.

TV Alerts for Wednesday:
New Lateline (8pm CST, NBC)
Conan O'Brien on Late Show with David Letterman (CBS)
Val Kilmer and Oliver Sacks on Charlie Rose
Jon Voight on Late Late Show with Tom Snyder (CBS)
Ben Stiller with Greg Kinner on a 1994 episode of Later (NBC)

Al Roker's dark side: "When Snowmen Go Bad"

Forget Socks and Buddy and all these recent presidential pets, Fala has her own webpage. Mainly I link to it because the Seal of the Presidential Pet cracks me up.

Think you're immune to the cuteness of scottie dog puppies? If so, you're a stronger person than I. Scottie puppies (wheaten and black) at age 10 weeks are perhaps the cutest thing I've seen in a long time. Their ears are even up! (When they're just a bit younger, their ears kindof flopover, which is cute, too).

Scotties are truly unique creatures, you can read more about 'em at The Scottish Terrier Club of America webpage and elsewhere.

I was skeptical of this software (AdsOff), but after using it for an hour, seems pretty neat. And it's Opera compatible (also works with IE and Netscape). Think it's just for Windoze machines at this point, it gets rid of ads and annoying popup windows (a la Geocities). 'Course an hour of use isn't exactly a lot, it may yet cause all sorts of problems. (Aren't I the optimist? I just figure if it works well, I would've heard of it by now...).

Anyone know of a good site to host these webpages? I'm toying with moving my domain/pages since I've been having problems with the net.connection between my workplace and my provider. I'm also, as always, looking for a bargain. :-) (Do my pages take anyone other than me more than a minute to load?) Naturally I want the usual stuff... reliable service, etc.

Alas, I can't afford to have a dedicated net.connection into my apartment just yet. ::sniff:: Send me email if you have any suggestions.

HERT-- a French CERT? They aren't particularly kind to CERT (thus hert?).

TUCOWS was cracked, here's a copy of the hacked page.

[both links via HNN]

Al Roker's "The Good Side of Being on TV."

How dumb do movie execs think we are?

Starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Kevin Kline, the movie was originally titled, simply, "A Midsummer Night's Dream." But just in case you slept through your high school English classes, studio execs recently tagged a possessive credit onto the title, making it "William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream."

I couldn't make this stuff up, here's a tidbit from the beginning of an interview with Gwyneth Paltrow:

At the time, she had just recorded a song with Huey Lewis, who will co-star as her father in an upcoming movie about karaoke singers.

Paltrow talks of being sick of seeing pictures of herself, of her soundbites; yet finds it ironic that the press still doesn't seem to "get" her. Then she answers the question "Who do they think you are?":

They think I'm this very cool, stuck-up blonde. That I'm either classy or bitchy. In this culture, if you're smart and blonde, you're a bitch and you're cold and you're stuck up. But I am so goofy and I am so not what they think. Yet, I kind of like the fact that people perceive me differently, because I can keep the best parts of myself private for my friends and my family.

(I relate. And I think if I had that kind of fame, I'd agree with that last sentiment, too).

TV Alerts for Tuesday:
Steve Harris (of The Practice) on Politically Incorrect.
Al Franken on Late Show with David Letterman.

Now here's a tough job: moving a 6-million-pound historic theater. [startribune]

New teevee piece by Lisa Schmeiser discusses Multiple Actor Syndrome. She's right on the money, especially about Homicide:

Previously-good police drama Homicide: Life on the Street has added four subpar actors to replace one good one--acting supernova Andre Braugher, whose character was given one of television's strangest slow fades over his two final seasons.

and Ally McBeal:

In a surprise move, Ally McBeal's additional casting actually improves the show: imperious ice queen Ling (Lucy Liu) and elegantly composed Nell (Portia de Rossi) add some welcome gravity to a show that's in constant peril of becoming cloyingly quirky.

Yes! New album by John Wesley Harding in February! Woohoo! (Oh, sorry, I'll stop dancing about now). Here's the press release about trad arr jones. And do you know what the appropriate soundtrack is for this weblog? Why, it's JWH's "Windowseat". Here are the lyrics. Visit JWH's official webpage, while you're at it.

Baltimore Sun website DNS hacked. Traffic redirected elsewhere, same for the Star and National Enquirer.

TV Alerts for Monday, January 11:
New episode of Ally McBeal (FOX, 8pm CST)
Gillian Anderson on Rosie (dang, forgot to tape it) and on Late Show with David Letterman.
Jon Stewart takes over as host of The Daily Show (on Comedy Central, 10pm CST).
Encore airing of Babylon 5: A Call to Arms on TNT (11pm CST).

Jon Stewart on Gillian Anderson:

But seriously what did Stewart think of his flame-haired costar? "She is very, very enigmatic, very puzzling. I would say things to her like, 'Do you want to head over to the trailer and grab some food?' And she would turn and say, 'The lizard swims at night deliciously.' And then laugh and walk away."

Ha! Al Sicherman on those Dummies books and Cliff's notes and here's one result:

It would be the work of a moment -- and a dummy -- to produce not only a "Cliffs Notes" version of each of the "Chicken Soup" books, but also "Chicken Soup for the Dummy's Soul" -- stories to open the heart and rekindle the spirit if you're not very bright (no comment) -- and "Chicken Soup for the Soul for Dummies," an aid to understanding the original "Chicken Soup for the Soul" books. [startribune]

Jim Klobuchar returns to the pages of the Minneapolis Star Tribune with a piece about the Vikings (then and now):

Those were the Vikings of the Super Bowls I knew -- Eller and Kapp and Brown, Jim Marshall, Ed White, Alan Page, Fran Tarkenton, Paul Krause, Grady Alderman, Chuck Foreman, Ahmad Rashad, Mick Tingelhoff, Jeff Siemon, Matt Blair, Bobby Bryant, Karl Kassulke, Oscar Reed, Nate Allen, Freddie Cox, Ed Sharockman. All those and a hundred more, players to remember, stars, pluggers, comedians and grumblers. Some of them were authentic heroes. None of them wears the ring of a Super Bowl winner. And in the midst of them every year was Harry P. (Bud) Grant, walking around with a plastic lawn bag after the team meal on Saturday nights, dutifully gathering uneaten pastrami sandwiches to take home to his dog. [startribune]

I ordered some videotapes from last week, got to me in record time. I'm impressed. (And their selection can be better than that of and others, especially when it comes to used videotapes of oldstuff).

There's Cool Stuff to be had in the clearance section of the toy department at Target. Well, at least that was the case at a Target store I visited, where I spied the extremely cool Underdog and Rocky and Bullwinkle toys. All marked down, whee! Other excellent bargains? A talking Flik from A Bug's Life with motion detector and everything (even has the real Flik voice, as done by Dave Foley). Well, I think he's well-worth the ten bucks I spent on him. They also have the large Premiere Babylon 5 dolls of Delenn and Sheridan for a mere 5 bucks each (marked down from $20). The X-Files Barbie doll set is marked down to $40, which is cheaper than they were, but still. (I already have them, got 'em as a gift, and yes I like them just fine. Scully barbie with cell phone, oh my). I did get the Star Wars Galactic Battle game (marked down to $12 from $35), it's basically an electronic Battleship game with cool Star Wars pieces and sound effects.

I did manage to leave the store without buying any of the keychain replicas of oldstyle Star Trek communicators, phasers, and tricorders. With sound and lights! Still looking for the Get Smart lunch box keychain, am I a sick girl or what?

New look for Raphaels' Honeyguide Web Log, same excellent content. (I do try to limit my links to stuff other folks have linked to from their weblogs, do visit the other logs, many are chock full o' nifty stuff).

Star Tribune's Dennis Anderson talks of birdwatching and birdfeeders:

It has been said, and correctly, that in each wild bird is the wildness, in sum, that exists in all the world, past or present.

Proof of this is apparent in movements of tiny chickadees -- so willing to chomp on sunflower seeds -- as well as in giant pileated woodpeckers, a warier bird, yet a sucker, day in and day out, for suet.

Followup to my urgings of folks to watch the Homicide: Life on the Street marathon on Court TV: Well, the marathon was a success, though limited for some unlucky souls. Fans report the shows were indeed uncut episodes during the marathon. Some fans are really upset because their cable companies interrupted the marathon to show infomercials during the wee hours of the morning (which happened to cooincide with "Three Men and Adena"-- an Emmy and Peabody award-winning episode). Harrumph.

Fans also are emailing Court TV to complain because the regular daily airings of the show do indeed have the usual cuts made for syndication. Different cuts than Lifetime made, some say these are worse. Ach well. Lucky Canadians, they get uncut episodes daily on Bravo Canada.

Some very kind souls have promised to send me tapes of the marathon. :-) And I'm trying to get a tape tree of sorts going in

Shangri-la finally found? Could be. My Dad went on and on about this story when I saw him this past weekend, apparently a local radio host interviewed Ken Storm, Jr. for over an hour. Sounds like there's all sorts of stuff yet to be released about this. Anyway, Doug Grow of the Minneapolis Star Tribune interviews the aforementioned Storm. And here's a piece from a Chicago Tribune writer via the St. Paul Pioneer Press. I did some basic searches looking for the story elsewhere, but didn't find anything. Will look in earnest later this week.

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Home / Revised: January 14, 1999 / Laurel Krahn /