Thursday, July 15, 2004

slow blogging. 

light (even lighter) blogging for a few weeks, due to vacations.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

fishy again 

Meredith Brody weights in on the cliché debate: the place she ate at is pretty, thus giving the lie to the clichés "You can't tell a book by its cover" and "Beauty is only skin deep."

Then she goes on: But folks also say, "Looks aren't everything," -ooops, it is still the same cliché. And she could add "you cannot tell a monk by his haircut," and so on and so forth. But, she wrote: "but", as if the same cliché somehow contradicted the others. And how does she finishes the paragraph, after identifying the clichés that apply to the place: what I'm really there for is the food. Yep, you're right, the cliché that applies to her.

Hidden in the middle of the review (she obviously hopes that people have given up by then, slogging through the tedious prose), is her review of the pop show at SFMOMA and of Farenheit 9/11. Both are thoroughly empty of any intelligence: a list of painting titles with a link to food for the SFMOMA review, yawn, and for the movie: [after seeing the movie,] I'm newly appalled. My fear is that exactly the kind of people who need to see this movie -- let's start with, oh, Republicans -- won't. It is hard to say if she's appalled by the movie or the movie content. (admire the use of an euphemism I knew Bush was, shall we say, not bright to avoid saying he's stupid. Remember, her good friend in LA fund raises for Bush).

Back to the food review: she comments about the lack of a lobster entree, to keep the price neighborly, right after she had a half lobster appetizer (price obviously not mentioned). Sherlock, if you want a full lobster, ask for them not to split it in two halves. And the price of the appetizer you ordered is probably not neighborly, otherwise you'd quoted it in the little detail box.

On a positive note, for the first time, she quoted the provenance of the salmon: "king" and "wild." Thank you. (another reason why she's probably a Bush supporter, beyond her acquaintances, is that she's never shown care for the environment. To her, Chez Panisse is a good restaurant, not a manifesto for sustainability).

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

liberal npr 

It is one of the little things that make me cringe. I'm listening to NPR at 8am this morning and they discuss Kerry's choice of Edwards as his running mate. And the bit goes something like: "npr host: well, let's hear what Edwards had to say when he was interviewed on fox by Chris Matthews earlier this year. chris matthews do you have any intention to be vice president? john edwards: I have no interest in the vice-presidency. Do have I any intention to be vice-president? No." (this is all rephrased, I could not find a transcript, but it conveys the idea).

So the only sound bite of Edwards is him saying firmly and categorically he would not accept to be running mate, which of course he just did. Impression on the listener? He flip-flopped, he cannot be trusted, he just told with a straight face the contrary of what he just did.

Of course, what NPR does not say is, when the question was asked, Edwards was still in contention for the Democratic party nomination. So asking him at that point whether he'd consider the vice-presidency he's akin to asking a groom whether he'd marry the bride's sister the day before the wedding. Why can't NPR add this bit of contest? Why does NPR have to choose this soundbite from Edwards?

Sunday, July 04, 2004

4th of July 

the LATimes ran two op-eds, one from Jonah Goldberg and the other from Michael Moore. I ran the first one, and found this:
Although I think it's absurd to argue that questioning a candidate's positions is the same as questioning his patriotism, it's all to the good that Democrats are fighting Republicans for the mantle of who's more patriotic.

Let me see: mmh, one the one hand, President AWOL, who refuses to show the integrality of his military record, despite making the promise on Meet the Press. One the one hand a Vice-President who fathered a child 9 month and one day after the father became exempt of the draft, and said he 'had better things to do'. On the other hand, a multi-decorated Vietnam war hero. Who's got the mantle? Is that a fight? It is a rout, Jonah.

The funny thing about Jonah's patriotism column, is that, Kerry is named, and the left is named, all but being accused of being unpatriotic, while you cannot find a mention of the current administration. What? No shining example of patriotism there?

Shorter Jonah: 4th of July is a day of reconciliation, and the left and the liberal and John Kerry should stop being unpatriotic if only for one day.

Mulgrew Miller 

A year ago, Mulgrew Miller went to Yoshi's to tape a live concert of his trio. We went there on one of the two recodring nights, and we went all groupie on him, having him sign our copy of 'wingspan'. The live date just got released, at least the vol.1 on it. My favorite song that evening was 'you and the night and the music', which is not on vol. 1. Hopefully on vol. 2. Also, he did a tony williams tune that was so intricate that they lost it, stopped in the middle, and Mulgrew got the laugh of the evening by summing up the screw-up with: "take 2." Anyhow, if you like a good jazz piano cd, I added link to 'wingspan' and 'live at yoshi's vol.1' on the left hand side through my amazon referral account. 'Live at yoshi's' is mostly standards, so it does not take a deep jazz education into free forms and fusion to get it.

Friday, July 02, 2004

the worst at many things 

Meredith Brody (but wait, today's not wednesday?) loves to write about her love of the movies. She drops here and there the name of the late ultimate movie reviewer, Pauline Kael. So we were pleased to stumble on a bit of prose Meredith coined for sfstation:

Three working girls in the big city: a delicious genre (the clothes! the sets! the amours!) that's proven supremely adaptable over the decades, from 1925's Sally, Irene, and Mary to 1967's Valley of the Dolls. (Add a girl, and the formula worked perfectly well for a “daring” late-lamented HBO hit.) For the lush Twentieth Century Fox CinemaScope bonbon The Best of Everything, based on the bestselling novel by Rona Jaffe (the combination Judith Krantz and Helen Fielding of her day), only the best of everything would do (all tech credits pro, as Variety would have it): producer Jerry Wald, inspiration for Sammy Glick, hired three-girls specialist Jean Negulesco, a Romanian charmer who cheerfully glorified the American girl (How to Marry a Millionaire, Three Coins in the Fountain) for Fox in DeLuxe color, and Sammy Cahn and Alfred Newman to write the aching title song, sung by Johnny Mathis. The three girls, blonde Hope Lange, brunette Diane Baker, and redheaded Suzy Parker, work in the oh-so-glamorous world of publishing (offices in the Seafram Building, no less), but their real job is looking for love, in mostly all the wrong places, with, among others, Stephen Boyd, Louis Jourdan, and, for fans of The Kid Stays in the Picture, Robert Evans in his last onscreen role. And, for fans of Joan Crawford, there she is, ramrod-straight and dieted-down, in her first-ever supporting role (though nobody seemed to tell that to Joan), as uber-bitch-editress Amanda Farrow. Abortions! Adultery! Alcoholism! (With stalking and true love thrown in, and with white gloves and pearls.) It really is the best of everything. —Meredith Brody

Oh, the exclamation points!!!! Oh, the parenthesis!!! Oh, the confused and convoluted writing that stretches sentences like a hippopotamus in a corset!!! Oh the facts that are abused just to make a point*!!!
Why oh why can't someone edit this to make it not palatable, no, just readable.

*The facts that don't make any sense: Three working girls in the big city: a delicious genre [...] that's proven supremely adaptable over the decades, from 1925's Sally, Irene, and Mary to 1967's Valley of the Dolls. Does she mean that Valley of the Dolls is the last movie about 3 women in a big city? Most likely, the point of the sentence is to show off her knowledge of movies from different eras and different styles. Added value to the reader: negative, it only generates confusion. But it makes her feel better. (the more insecure, the more 'facts' and names you place, hoping to get credibility from the numbers).

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