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io9’s Tribute to the Greatest Drunks in Science Fiction 24.09.2010

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Serling, the Master 31.08.2010

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Beam Me Up, Beam Me Up Hard 26.08.2010

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A very dear friend sent me this link, asking what I thought of it. I found it reasonably entertaining, in a science-fiction-y kinda way. But full disclosure: I have to admit that, in my crotchety old age, I’ve become addicted to actual “genuine” freaky science stuff. I know, I’m a nerd. I read Discover, Scientific American, Free Inquiry, and Skeptical Inquirer cover-to-cover and devour shelves of laymen-friendly physics books and hours of all kinds of hard science TV shows and the like. Stuff about string theory, quantum mechanics, dark energy, the search for the “Higgs Boson,” black holes, behavior evolution, warped space/time issues, ‘brane theory, the nature of consciousness, “spooky action at a distance,” multiple universes, research into invisibility, and yes, that single molecule “scientists successfully teleported” really fascinates me.

So, in honestly, the kind of completely baseless, made-up stuff this guy Bashar is randomly pulling out of his butt and presenting as reality is entertaining, but truth is it’s kinda annoying to me he’s not labeling it “science fiction” considering how much REAL mindboggling, absolutely amazing science discoveries and stunning, breathtakingly scientific research is actually going on out there. Right now all around the world. Just my two cents.

I have no problem with people making stuff up if they openly present it as fiction — hell, I do that myself whenever the eff I can — but it’s a big pet peeve when they do it as fact. And the web is full if these kinds of shenanigans. Don’t mean to get my back up, but, just for example, it’s like when Deepak Chopra takes a really cool recent physics discovery, completely distorts it (and misunderstands it), and then uses it, incorrectly, to support and “validate” some random “new age” spirituality trend he’s trying to sell the public — it pisses me off.

Can you tell this issue strikes a nerve in me? Sorry. Maybe it comes from my old days as an amateur conjurer. We magicians get particularly hinky about this stuff. I don’t think it’s by accident that people who are well-versed at tricking the public (and see how incredibly easy it is to fool them) — from me, to The Amazing Randi, to Penn & Teller, to Houdini himself — often become seriously obsessed with debunking charlatans, fakes, and hucksters. It’s a natural progression.

Sorry, I went off on many tangents. Too much coffee this morning. Bottom line is my philosophy is: reality and this universe of ours is turning out to be weird, wild, wacky, strange and thrilling enough — without making up stuff and presenting it as the truth, you know? There’s just no need!

On the other hand, humans have been making random stuff up since the beginning of recorded history (don’t get me started on religion!) so I suppose I should just accept it at this point. Sigh.

Doing the Butt 05.07.2010

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Hear Commodore Mendez interviewed on the Look at His Butt podcast, hosted by honorary drunken trekkies (and slash writers) Lene Taylor and Jungle Kitty (who sounds suspiciously like actress Patricia Clarkson, hmm).

Episode 129 on MP3

Feting Shatmoy 26.03.2010

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I’m being interviewed tomorrow as part of Look at His Butt‘s ongoing Shatmoy celebration. Since they are in the Starfleet state, and I am practically on the other side of the galaxy, we will use the amazing technology called Skype! I suppose at some point the interview will become available on the Interwebs.

iPad, SchmiPad 28.01.2010

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!!! 10.01.2010

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epic fail pictures
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Newspapers — by Computer! 12.10.2009

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Review: Pubic Frenemies 30.09.2009

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"When a man's an empty kettle, he should be on his mettle..."

"When a man's an empty kettle, he should be on his mettle..."

Movie: Superman/Batman: Public Enemies (2009)
This movie is a cheeky adaptation of an overdrawn, badly written comic book, but it’s still better than any Batman movie ever done by Tim Burton (producer of 9 — FAIL!). The voice actors, particularly Tim Daly and Kevin Conroy, hit their one-liners just fine. The director is a little too happy with himself, and what is up with Power Girl’s boobs?! (Bad enough they made her as doe-eyed as Allison Mack, the actress who performs her voice and mewls through Smallville each week.) The script has some good comic book moments but is ultimately as hollow as Major Force’s uniform.
Compared to the great Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, this movie thought this was Ceti Alpha VI.
If Leonard Nimoy had directed it, there would have been more heart and he would have done great voice work as Hawkman.
If Scotty had seen the movie with me,
he’d have said, “I dunna watch kiddie shows.”
Overall:
Luthor becomes President. Superman becomes a fugitive after being accused of killing Metallo. Batman, as his love interest, helps clear his name; stop Luthor; oh, and prevent a giant kryptonite asteroid from reaching Earth. The kind of story that would have begun and ended in the front two-thirds of an issue of Action Comics back in the ’70s. Even better, one half-hour episode of Super-Friends. Boobs!
SPOILER: Superman and Batman win!
I give this movie:
1.73 Nomads out of 5

Review: Passing the Gravy 30.08.2009

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Still clownin' after all these years. But why?

Still clownin' after all these years. But why?

Movie: Saint Misbehavin’: The Wavy Gravy Movie (2008)
This documentary follows someone who stepped out to find Eden, ate all the fruit and threw away the rind.
The subjects have drunk the Kool-Aid, and sometimes make you wish you could, too, and maintain personal hygiene and eschew STDs. The director could’ve done less about Woodstock and more about the back story of Hugh Romney, a.k.a Wavy Gravy, the clown emcee at Woodstock.
Compared to the great Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, this movie is about us flying a goddamn computer console when we wanna be out hopping galaxies.
If William Shatner had directed it, there would be an extended version of his cover of “Mr. Tambourine Man.” If Leonard Nimoy had directed it, the soundtrack would include him on the lyre.
If Scotty had seen the movie with me, he’d have said, “I just want to give those barefooted what-do-you-call-’ems the boot out of here.”
Overall: An inspiring if superficial look at a minor character from another time who gamely tries to keep up the best parts of the hippie philosophy, not the ones that led to massive self-entitlement/-indulgence, but that peace and love stuff (which itself got commodified a long time ago).
I give this movie: 2.97 Nomads