Friday, January 30, 2004


Pixar pact end turns up heat on Eisner (CBS Marketwatch, 01/30/04)

'Disney's shareholder meeting, scheduled for March 3, just got a little more interesting.

Pixar's decision Thursday to end its longstanding deal with Disney means the venerable studio could see a key source of numerous revenue streams drying up in a hurry.

And the calls by Roy Disney, nephew of the company's founder and former vice chairman, for Chief Executive Michael Eisner to step down could be heard by more shareholders as they wonder where the Disney chief is leading the company.

"The market already made a judgment which isn't good news for Disney," Roy Disney said in an interview with CBS MarketWatch as the company's shares fell nearly 5 percent in after-hours trading Thursday. "That's the market's judgment and that's my judgment."

But analysts are concerned that even though the company's stock has risen dramatically in recent months, Eisner won't see as many friendly faces when he takes the stage at the company's annual gathering, scheduled to take place in Philadelphia.

"Could it heat things up [at the annual meeting]? I think it has the potential," said David Mantell, analyst at Loop Capital Markets in Chicago. "I think it's too early to tell whether it's a serious threat [to Eisner]."
And it gets worse:

"The timing could hardly be worse for Eisner. On Tuesday, Roy Disney and his business partner, fellow ex-Disney board member Stanley Gold, filed a statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission calling upon company shareholders to oust Eisner and three board members.

Roy Disney said Eisner has been unable to maintain the growth levels achieved during the first decade of his now 20 years at the company. Disney said Eisner's management has faltered since the death of President Frank Wells in 1995.


Will all this be enough to settle concerns among shareholders who may be antsy, or will they follow Roy Disney's lead in calling for Eisner's head?

"I think [that's] a bit of a stretch," said Guzman's Joyce. "But it'll keep the issue front and center."'
I'll keep on top of this, so maybe there'll be something more interesting and heartening to pay attention to than all the political nonsense on a lot of other blogs...

Thursday, January 29, 2004

"Hit the Road, Mike, and Don't You Come Back Nemo"

Pixar has fired Disney.

Pixar Quits Disney Talks, Seeks New Partner (Yahoo News: 01/29/04)

"Pixar Animation Studios Inc. said on Thursday it had broken off talks with Walt Disney Co. to extend their lucrative movie distribution deal that has resulted in such blockbusters as "Toy Story," "Monsters Inc." and "Finding Nemo."

The computer animation pioneer said it said it would look for another studio partner and would begin talks with other companies to distribute its films starting in 2006.

The move was a blow to Disney, which reaped a financial and critical bonanza from the partnership and has struggled with its own strategy for animation. Their deal includes two more films in production."
In related news:

After the Bell: Pixar Up, Disney Down (Yahoo News: 01/29/04)

"Shares of Walt Disney Co. fell in trade after the closing bell on Thursday while shares of Pixar Animation Studios Inc. (Nasdaq:PIXR - news) rose after Pixar said it had broken off talks with Disney to extend their movie distribution deal."
Disney CEO Michael Eisner's chief claim to fame was that Disney's stock was rising. Now it ain't, and that may be all she wrote for Mr. Eisner.

Apparently, though I haven't seen a source yet, Disney stockholder Pixar will vote NO in a no-confidence vote of shareholders at the Annual Disney Shareholder Conference in Philadelphia the first week in March. Will they steer other companies their way, and remove Eisner from his position?

Roy Disney and Stanley Gold hope so, and they're urging all stockholders to vote NO as well.

My guess is, Pixar is using their enormous clout to tip the scales against Eisner, force him out, and a few months down the road resume ties with Disney under the new management. That's what it seems like to me.

"I'm wishing....."


In a completely unrelated, yet strangely similar situation, Paramount may be on the verge of firing current Star Trek head guy, and Gene Roddenberry protoge Rick Berman:

"It would seem the lackluster support of ENTERPRISE by Les Moonves and Dawn Ostroff at this weekend's UPN press junket has gotten the attention of Garry Hart, President of Paramount Television Productions. Quiet for some time regarding the dismal performance of his division's most important moneymaker, it has been rumored that Hart may be planning as early as March to make concessions to UPN to help keep ENTERPRISE on the air. From an insider in John Wentworth's office at Paramount Television's Marketing and Media Relations Department, a memo has been spotted suggesting Hart may be waiting until after ENTERPRISE's February sweeps performance to announce the possible replacement of some of the show's production staff, to possibly include longtime TREK Executive Producer Rick Berman. There is no word at this time of any possible replacements."'
This is interesting only in the fact I saw the two sets of stories within about five minutes of each other on different websites.

He's Got Those Reality-Show Blues

A certain country music singer/songwriter of my long-time acquaintance recently participated in an audition for a Nashville-based reality TV show, with mixed results. Read his story:

Blame it on Wapner! Part One:

"When you look at it listed like that, it's a little easier to see the absurdity of it all -- and ourselves for watching them, and, more importantly, buying the products advertised on them. And you know who started it all?? Judge Freaking Wapner."
...and Two:

"One attendee described seeing this show at Billy Bob's quite nicely, as "somewhere just north of listening to Zamfir while drinking non-alcoholic beer and chewing tin foil." To put it diplomatically -- it was a freakshow. Some of the acts (maybe about 5 - there were 28 of us) were decent, but most of them made Kenny Chesney look like Merle Freakin' Haggard. I had to sit there and watch 26 teeny-bopper chickies, college-age floppy-haired model/actor slackers, redneck rockers, and cutesy singer-songwriter dudes, most of whom brought their whole families and hordes of obnoxious drunken friends to scream for them and hold up signs like "Nashville Bound" and "Mike Rocks".'
Read the whole thing. Then, when you're through read the whole site. Then when you're through with that, go buy a few of his albums - if I can just set it up so he eventually hits it real big and starts making a ton of money, he can be the one that gets to take care of our parents later on!

Just kidding, mom and dad :)

You can even listen to MP3's of some of his tunes:

Oh, The Places I've Been

The states that I have visited are in red below, the states I have not visited are in tannish/green:

create your own visited states map
or write about it on the open travel guide

"Visited" states include those I've driven through on the way to somewhere else, but not actually stopped for any meaningful time (Iowa, Missouri, Illinois) but don't include those I've flown over in a plane.

Interestingly, I'm sure I must have visited Mississippi at some time in the past but darn if I can remember exactly when, so for now it is Unvisited.

As for living in states, the only state I've lived in other than Tennessee for any length of time was Florida, and that was for a summer when I worked as a stage manager for the Seaside Music Theatre in Daytona Beach back in 1990.

Oh, and a similar map of the world showing countries I've visited would include only several islands in the Caribbean and Mexico. That's it for that.

(Hat tip: "What Hath I Wrought!")

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Gollum, Yoda. Yoda, Gollum.

Just ran across this:

What NOT to do during "Return of the King."

Some of my favorites:

5. Ask everyone around you if they think Gandalf went to Hogwarts.

13. During a wide shot of a battle, inquire, "Where's Waldo?"

18. Imitate what you think a conversation between Gollum, Dobby and Yoda would be like.
Got any more?

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Encourage, Not Discourage

On honor roll? Keep it to yourself (Knoxville News Sentinel: 01/26/04)

"The school honor roll, a time-honored system for rewarding "A" students, has become an apparent source of embarrassment for some underachievers.

As a result, all Nashville schools have stopped posting honor rolls, and some are also considering a ban on hanging good work in the hallways - all at the advice of school lawyers.
I think that's your key phrase right there - "on the advice of school lawyers".

"After a few parents complained their children might be ridiculed for not making the list..."
Who are these parents? Where are they? I want to sit down with them in their living room and explain to them that they're raising children, not Cabbage Patch Kids. Kids have been disappointed at not making this or that honor roll, or this or that Dean's List for years. It's called incentive, it's called encouragement, it's called impetus. How else do those people, whose abilities may not be a natural gift to them, learn to succeed? By being continually told that their mediocre grades are ok, no big deal, don't get upset?

It's a similar situation where so many youth sports leagues these days don't keep score, and as such don't keep standings, wins&losses, etc. That's fine for younger, training leagues - the point there is to learn how to play the game and learn not to run off the field at inopportune times - but once they're old enough to know how the games are played, scorekeeping should be reintroduced immediately, as should wins & losses, records, and standings. When there's no goal to strive for, there's no growth and no advancement. Sure, it's good exercise but not allowing kids the mental reward for having scored a goal, a run, a basket, a touchdown - you're giving them nothing to play for. Except their parents vicarious thrills, apparantly.

Back to academics: Who exactly is going to ridicule these non-honor roll kids? If a kid is smart enought and/or applies himself enough, they're not going to have the temperment or crassness (in most situations) to see a need to make fun of someone who didn't make the grade. And their even worse-performing peers won't care. Who's left? The teachers? Or are the parents worried about each other demeaning their children for sub-par schoolwork? Maybe this is a crutch to absolve parents from having a guideline to measure their children's work by - if there's no honor roll, there's no sense of really where in their academic career their children are.

When I was in school, I was on the honor roll most of the time. And I know from vast experience that we were never making fun of the kids who weren't - if anything, we were the ones made fun of for succeeding. And it's the same in every school, and has been the same since grades were invented. The brains and geeks and nerds are always vilified by the under-achievers, it's so common knowledge it's unfathomable that it could be any way else.

"Some schools have since put a stop to academic pep rallies. Others think they may have to cancel spelling bees. And now schools across the state may follow Nashville's lead."
It just gets worse and worse till you have to blink and gape openmouthed at the words for a few moments, then move on.

Ok, moralistic rant out of the way. Now on to the legal stuff:

"...Nashville school system lawyers warned that state privacy laws forbid releasing any academic information, good or bad, without permission.


In Knoxville, school district spokesman Russ Oaks said authorities do not think posting good information about a student violates state law. He said they put such information in the same category as sports statistics.


...But Nashville school lawyers based their decision last month on a state privacy law dating back to the 1970s - a law that's not always followed because no one challenged the honor roll status quo.
Some school have begun requiring permission slips from parents to release academic records, but that's just a band-aid.

"Others think it might be a good idea to get rid of the honor roll altogether, as Principal Steven Baum did at Julia Green Elementary in Nashville.

"The rationale was, if there are some children that always make it and others that always don't make it, there is a very subtle message that was sent," he said. "I also understand right to privacy is the legal issue for the new century."
Yes, Mr. Principal - but the subtle message that is being sent is not, "YOU'RE STUPID", but "YOU HAVE ROOM TO IMPROVE". One phrase discourages, the other encourages. Instead of killing the messenger, re-interpret the message.

'"I discourage competitive games at school," he said. "They just don't fit my world view of what a school should be."'
What?? What??? Do some teachers, administrators, parents, school board members, legislators actually think their children will not be required to compete in the real world? From the first day after graduation, they will be competing with other people for jobs, for mates, for houses.... They will be competing against other parents on how their own children will be raised, and what their environments will be like. They will be competing with someone or something every day for the rest of their lives - and you want to deliberately not teach them how to compete? That's like awarding someone a Masters Degree in Physics, without teaching them math...

Here's the thing: Competition doesn't necessarily mean I Win/You Lose. Competition can mean everyone improves. There's the old saw that says a sports team must compete against superior opponents to get better - you think the Lady Vols play UConn, Duke, etc. every year for their health? That's one big reason they are a consistently superior program - they set high goals for themselves, they intentionally play other superior teams, they test themselves, and by time for the NCAA Tournament they're ready to compete, excel, and maybe win.

You're not necessarily trying to be better than the other guy, you're trying to be better than they person you were the day before. If you make the honor roll - congratulations, you're doing something right. If you don't make the honor roll but are trying - congratulations as well because you're better than you were yesterday. If you don't make the honor roll because it doesn't exist and you're discouraged from seeing and recognizing that higher standards and goals exist? You're being cheated, and dishonored by the same people most entrusted to care for your well-being and growth: your parents.

There is some hope:

"The change has upset many parents who want their children recognized for hard work.

"This is as backward as it gets," said Miriam Mimms, who has a son at Meigs Magnet School and helps run the Parent Teacher Association.


Parents at most schools, though, have been close to outrage over the new rule.
Some people do get it, apparently. This is a story that does not need to slip through the cracks.

I could go on and on (and already have). Spelling Bees aren't important who wins, but that the competitors improve their spelling. Baseball games aren't truly important who wins, but that you have a goal to reach for and develop and improve your skills to reach that goal - scoring more points than the other team, and doing it better than you would have the day before. That's it.

Encourage, don't discourage.

UPDATE (01/28/04): It was pointed out to me that I slightly misinterpreted this:

"...As a result, all Nashville schools have stopped posting honor rolls..." mean they had removed the concept of honor rolls altogether. This may not be the case - I would assume with this interpretation students still make an honor roll with good school-work, it just isn't publicly acknowledged or reported. If so, I stand corrected - however this doesn't change the fact that competition is still being actively discouraged in the schools, which is a Bad Thing.

Whistling in the Dark

Oh, what fun....

U.S. ships Libyan nuclear components to Oak Ridge (Knoxville News-Sentinel: 01/27/04)

"Tons of nuclear-related equipment from Libya arrived in Knoxville this morning and reportedly were trucked to a government facility in Oak Ridge for safekeeping.


"These materials include both sensitive documentation and equipment," [White House spokesman Scott] McClellan said in his statement released in Washington. "On the flight was UF6 – uranium hexafluoride – which is used for feedstock to enrich uranium. Also included on the flight were centrifuge parts, which are used to enrich uranium (for weapons use). Finally, the shipment contains ballistic missile guidance sets for longer-range missiles, which Libya has voluntarily agreed to eliminate."

McClellan said the shipment was sent to a "secure facility" in Tennessee. That facility is the Y-12 National Security Complex, which is a warhead-manufacturing facility that also houses the nation’s primary stockpile of weapons-grade uranium."
So, this is like the same facility that just in the last few weeks or so failed one security test and cheated on another? This is the same facility that supposedly could allow terrorists to access and construct a nuclear weapon in half an hour? This is the same facility that's about oh, say, 25 miles from my home?

I'm checking my travel agent.... wonder what The Congo is like this time of year?

I'd Look Good on the $1 Bill...

Which Founding Father Are You?

Friday, January 23, 2004

So That's What It Was...

Mars Rover Resumes Sending Data Back to Earth

"The Mars rover Spirit resumed sending data to Earth on Friday after the robot suffered from garbled communications and periods of intermittent silence, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory said on Friday."

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Volunteer Tailgate Party - Vol. XX

Janet of Dagley Dagley Daily is hosting the latest Volunteer Tailgate Party, a bi-weekly compilation of the best and brightest blatherings of the Rocky Top Brigade.

This edition of the VTP is the Chinese New Year version, straight from the frigid shores of New Jersey. Enjoy!

Top 100 Movies

IMDB regularly publishes a list of its readers' top 250 favorite movies. Apparently, it's currently all the rage to post the top 100 and indicate which movies you've seen - so here's my list (with the ones I've seen in Bold:

(Also see Big Stupid Tommy, Pete, Bill and Danielle.

1 Godfather, The (1972) 9.0/10 (86650 votes)
2 Shawshank Redemption, The (1994) 8.9/10 (108244 votes)
3 Godfather: Part II, The (1974) 8.8/10 (50598 votes)
4 Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The (2003) 8.8/10 (43704 votes)
5 Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The (2002) 8.8/10 (71742 votes)
6 Casablanca (1942) 8.7/10 (50286 votes)
7 Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The (2001) 8.7/10 (115838 votes)
8 Schindler's List (1993) 8.7/10 (73955 votes)
9 Shichinin no samurai (1954) 8.7/10 (21178 votes)
10 Star Wars (1977) 8.7/10 (105834 votes)
11 Citizen Kane (1941) 8.7/10 (46916 votes)
12 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) 8.6/10 (52603 votes)
13 Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964) 8.6/10 (47608 votes)
14 Rear Window (1954) 8.6/10 (30659 votes)
15 Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) 8.6/10 (81483 votes)
16 Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) 8.6/10 (72340 votes)
17 Memento (2000) 8.6/10 (64159 votes)
18 Usual Suspects, The (1995) 8.6/10 (79494 votes)
19 Pulp Fiction (1994) 8.6/10 (95979 votes)
20 North by Northwest (1959) 8.5/10 (27324 votes)
21 12 Angry Men (1957) 8.5/10 (20928 votes)
22 Fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain, Le (2001) 8.5/10 (40175 votes)
23 Psycho (1960) 8.5/10 (41653 votes)
24 Lawrence of Arabia (1962) 8.5/10 (23582 votes)
25 Buono, il brutto, il cattivo, Il (1966) 8.5/10 (18751 votes)
26 Silence of the Lambs, The (1991) 8.5/10 (71193 votes)
27 It's a Wonderful Life (1946) 8.5/10 (32110 votes)
28 Goodfellas (1990) 8.5/10 (49744 votes)
29 American Beauty (1999) 8.4/10 (84189 votes)
30 Vertigo (1958) 8.4/10 (25924 votes)
31 Sunset Blvd. (1950) 8.4/10 (11501 votes)
32 Matrix, The (1999) 8.4/10 (109569 votes)
33 Apocalypse Now (1979) 8.4/10 (48133 votes)
34 Pianist, The (2002) 8.4/10 (16395 votes)
35 To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) 8.4/10 (22571 votes)
36 Some Like It Hot (1959) 8.3/10 (18821 votes)
37 C'era una volta il West (1968) 8.3/10 (9939 votes)
38 Taxi Driver (1976) 8.3/10 (34763 votes)
39 Third Man, The (1949) 8.3/10 (13824 votes)
40 Paths of Glory (1957) 8.3/10 (10360 votes)
41 Fight Club (1999) 8.3/10 (78679 votes)
42 Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi (2001) 8.3/10 (12647 votes)
43 Boot, Das (1981) 8.3/10 (21760 votes)
44 Double Indemnity (1944) 8.3/10 (8694 votes)
45 L.A. Confidential (1997) 8.3/10 (54644 votes)
46 Chinatown (1974) 8.3/10 (19079 votes)
47 Singin' in the Rain (1952) 8.3/10 (15458 votes)
48 Maltese Falcon, The (1941) 8.3/10 (15143 votes)
49 Requiem for a Dream (2000) 8.3/10 (30380 votes)
50 M (1931) 8.3/10 (8643 votes)
51 Bridge on the River Kwai, The (1957) 8.3/10 (17103 votes)
52 All About Eve (1950) 8.3/10 (9878 votes)
53 Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) 8.3/10 (45460 votes)
54 Se7en (1995) 8.3/10 (64725 votes)
55 Saving Private Ryan (1998) 8.2/10 (77044 votes)
56 Cidade de Deus (2002) 8.2/10 (7987 votes)
57 Raging Bull (1980) 8.2/10 (19237 votes)
58 Rashômon (1950) 8.2/10 (7974 votes)
59 Wizard of Oz, The (1939) 8.2/10 (29506 votes)
60 Sting, The (1973) 8.2/10 (18026 votes)
61 Alien (1979) 8.2/10 (47558 votes)
62 American History X (1998) 8.2/10 (41139 votes)
63 Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939) 8.2/10 (8732 votes)
64 Léon (1994) 8.2/10 (36596 votes)
65 Vita è bella, La (1997) 8.2/10 (29123 votes)
66 Touch of Evil (1958) 8.2/10 (8962 votes)
67 Manchurian Candidate, The (1962) 8.2/10 (9905 votes)
68 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) 8.2/10 (51106 votes)
69 Treasure of the Sierra Madre, The (1948) 8.2/10 (7760 votes)
70 Wo hu cang long (2000) 8.2/10 (40857 votes)
71 Great Escape, The (1963) 8.2/10 (14554 votes)
72 Reservoir Dogs (1992) 8.2/10 (49067 votes)
73 Clockwork Orange, A (1971) 8.2/10 (48891 votes)
74 Amadeus (1984) 8.2/10 (28383 votes)
75 Modern Times (1936) 8.2/10 (7267 votes)
76 Annie Hall (1977) 8.2/10 (15785 votes)
77 Ran (1985) 8.2/10 (8482 votes)
78 Jaws (1975) 8.2/10 (35646 votes)
79 On the Waterfront (1954) 8.2/10 (9043 votes)
80 Braveheart (1995) 8.1/10 (70850 votes)
81 High Noon (1952) 8.1/10 (9150 votes)
82 Apartment, The (1960) 8.1/10 (8182 votes)
83 Fargo (1996) 8.1/10 (51116 votes)
84 Sixth Sense, The (1999) 8.1/10 (73505 votes)
85 Aliens (1986) 8.1/10 (49504 votes)
86 Shining, The (1980) 8.1/10 (37003 votes)
87 Strangers on a Train (1951) 8.1/10 (7611 votes)
88 Blade Runner (1982) 8.1/10 (59571 votes)
89 Metropolis (1927) 8.1/10 (8543 votes)
90 Duck Soup (1933) 8.1/10 (7411 votes)
91 Finding Nemo (2003) 8.1/10 (19662 votes)
92 Donnie Darko (2001) 8.1/10 (25300 votes)
93 General, The (1927) 8.1/10 (4921 votes)
94 Toy Story 2 (1999) 8.1/10 (30366 votes)
95 Princess Bride, The (1987) 8.1/10 (42334 votes)
96 City Lights (1931) 8.1/10 (5559 votes)
97 Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003) 8.1/10 (24984 votes)
98 Great Dictator, The (1940) 8.1/10 (7068 votes)
99 Lola rennt (1998) 8.0/10 (24118 votes)
100 Notorious (1946) 8.0/10 (7709 votes)

A couple of observations:

  • I have a lot of catching up to do, especially with the classics.
  • The Lord of the Rings films are too recent to be judged fairly. So is The Matrix.
  • Not enough people, apparently, are watching The Wizard of Oz these days.
  • No Disney animated films? Two Pixars, though. I would have had Beauty and the Beast, Lion King and Sleeping Beauty on there at least...

Here is the Bottom 100 list, same thing:

1 'Manos' the Hands of Fate (1966) 1.6 (5341 votes)
2 From Justin to Kelly (2003) 1.6 (3988 votes)
3 Future War (1997) 1.7 (914 votes)
4 Space Mutiny (1988) 1.7 (1220 votes)
5 Troll 2 (1990) 1.7 (1257 votes)
6 Eegah (1962) 1.7 (790 votes)
7 Hobgoblins (1987) 1.8 (1530 votes)
8 Backyard Dogs (2000) 1.8 (979 votes)
9 Santa with Muscles (1996) 1.8 (1965 votes)
10 Gigli (2003) 1.8 (6580 votes)
11 Going Overboard (1989) 2.0 (833 votes)
12 Werewolf (1996) 2.0 (742 votes)
13 Giant Spider Invasion, The (1975) 2.1 (663 votes)
14 Glitter (2001) 2.1 (3628 votes)
15 Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie (1997) 2.2 (793 votes)
16 Police Academy: Mission to Moscow (1994) 2.2 (3977 votes)
17 Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964) 2.2 (1371 votes)
18 Kazaam (1996) 2.3 (2329 votes)
19 Leonard Part 6 (1987) 2.3 (1806 votes)
20 Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000 (2000) 2.4 (11353 votes)
21 Hercules in New York (1970) 2.4 (1713 votes)
22 Lawnmower Man 2: Beyond Cyberspace (1996) 2.4 (1790 votes)
23 Baby Geniuses (1999) 2.5 (2167 votes)
24 It's Pat (1994) 2.5 (1936 votes)
25 2001: A Space Travesty (2000) 2.5 (1171 votes)
26 Jaws: The Revenge (1987) 2.6 (3832 votes)
27 Cool as Ice (1991) 2.6 (899 votes)
28 Bolero (1984) 2.6 (1038 votes)
29 Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The (1994) 2.7 (1761 votes)
30 Mitchell (1975) 2.7 (971 votes)
31 House of the Dead (2003) 2.7 (736 votes)
32 Police Academy 6: City Under Siege (1989) 2.7 (3209 votes)
33 Smokey and the Bandit III (1983) 2.7 (1022 votes)
34 Teen Wolf Too (1987) 2.7 (1584 votes)
35 Vercingétorix (2001) 2.8 (976 votes)
36 Captain America (1991) 2.8 (900 votes)
37 Steel (1997) 2.8 (1027 votes)
38 Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach (1988) 2.8 (3774 votes)
39 Cat in the Hat, The (2003) 2.8 (1995 votes)
40 Mannequin: On the Move (1991) 2.8 (832 votes)
41 Rollerball (2002) 2.8 (3525 votes)
42 Ringmaster (1998) 2.9 (1073 votes)
43 Tarzan, the Ape Man (1981) 2.9 (946 votes)
44 Master of Disguise, The (2002) 3.0 (2337 votes)
45 Problem Child 2 (1991) 3.0 (2445 votes)
46 Spice World (1997) 3.0 (5472 votes)
47 Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995) 3.0 (1335 votes)
48 Mr. Nanny (1993) 3.1 (904 votes)
49 Cop & 1/2 (1993) 3.1 (1072 votes)
50 Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (1997) 3.1 (3928 votes)
51 Street Fighter (1994) 3.1 (4716 votes)
52 Jaws 3-D (1983) 3.1 (3608 votes)
53 Double Dragon (1994) 3.1 (882 votes)
54 Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot (1992) 3.2 (4009 votes)
55 Crossroads (2002) 3.2 (5900 votes)
56 Barb Wire (1996) 3.2 (3878 votes)
57 Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn, An (1997) 3.2 (924 votes)
58 Bats (1999/I) 3.2 (2169 votes)
59 FeardotCom (2002) 3.2 (3020 votes)
60 Universal Soldier: The Return (1999) 3.3 (2384 votes)
61 RoboCop 3 (1993) 3.3 (3021 votes)
62 Mangler, The (1995) 3.3 (779 votes)
63 Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987) 3.3 (4539 votes)
64 Best Defense (1984) 3.3 (982 votes)
65 Iron Eagle II (1988) 3.3 (834 votes)
66 Mac and Me (1988) 3.3 (815 votes)
67 Mr. Magoo (1997) 3.3 (1817 votes)
68 Grease 2 (1982) 3.3 (4103 votes)
69 Ticker (2001) 3.3 (1031 votes)
70 Speed 2: Cruise Control (1997) 3.3 (9648 votes)
71 Glen or Glenda (1953) 3.3 (1030 votes)
72 Mr. Wrong (1996) 3.4 (1315 votes)
73 Highlander II: The Quickening (1991) 3.4 (7456 votes)
74 Pokémon the First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back (1999) 3.4 (2606 votes)
75 Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987) 3.4 (4163 votes)
76 Avengers, The (1998) 3.4 (8821 votes)
77 Jury Duty (1995) 3.4 (1411 votes)
78 Exorcist II: The Heretic (1977) 3.4 (2056 votes)
79 Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd (2003) 3.4 (2106 votes)
80 Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959) 3.4 (5538 votes)
81 Friday the 13th: A New Beginning (1985) 3.4 (2037 votes)
82 Derailed (2002) 3.4 (691 votes)
83 Freddy Got Fingered (2001) 3.4 (6032 votes)
84 Weekend at Bernie's II (1993) 3.5 (1551 votes)
85 Caddyshack II (1988) 3.5 (3050 votes)
86 Omega Code, The (1999) 3.5 (1681 votes)
87 Super Mario Bros. (1993) 3.5 (3554 votes)
88 Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever (2002) 3.5 (3012 votes)
89 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (1978) 3.5 (1074 votes)
90 Endless Love (1981) 3.5 (835 votes)
91 Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989) 3.5 (2246 votes)
92 McHale's Navy (1997) 3.5 (1296 votes)
93 On Deadly Ground (1994) 3.5 (2654 votes)
94 Nothing But Trouble (1991) 3.5 (2896 votes)
95 Kangaroo Jack (2003) 3.6 (2321 votes)
96 Batman & Robin (1997) 3.6 (22084 votes)
97 Stupids, The (1996) 3.6 (1151 votes)
98 Pet Sematary II (1992) 3.6 (1444 votes)
99 Leprechaun (1993) 3.6 (1690 votes)
100 Bio-Dome (1996) 3.6 (3181 votes)

Not many I've seen here, thank goodness - however, for the record, I've always loved Grease 2 and Sgt. Pepper - so there. Pttttthhh.

Probably makes a difference how old you were when you saw them - I was in my early teens.

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Less than One Month to Go

From 2/16-3/1 I'll be here:

Doing this.

Even today (January 20) when it's -46 degrees here in Knoxville, it's 64 degrees in Boca Grande.


Heh heh heh.

I say, heh heh heh heh heh heh.....

Not a Surprise

I took the President Match poll, and, unsurprisingly my closest Democratic candidate match is Joe Lieberman.

Pretty much what I figured...also dead last were Dean and Bush - also pretty much as I figured. What's funny is Al Sharpton came in second. Clark was somewhere in the middle.

So Lieberman's stated positions pretty much match my own, and Dean and Bush's views were most opposite mine.

Which doesn't really mean squat if I don't consider someone "Presidential material". I don't consider Dean, Clark, Sharpton, or Bush "Presidential material". I'm somewhat lukewarm on Lieberman - I need to study him some more. For some reason he Strongly Opposes a) Required Safety Course and Licenses before Gun Purchases, and b) Somewhat Opposes Partial Birth Abortions and Strongly Opposes Outlawing Abortions in Rape/Incest Cases. (note: I don't think any Democratic candidate is going to go on record opposing abortion, so I'm not certain those are his true positions).

I thought, and still think, that Gore was "Presidential material". Even though he endorsed Dean, we all know that endorsements are all political and have little to do with the candidate that someone feels closely matches another politician's personal philosophy, so I don't read too much into that.

Anyway, it's an interesting little quiz - take a look.

(Hat Tip: Hatamaran)

Silence, Milky-White...not to my liking..

Not much time to blog lately - a couple notes:

  1. Justin of Elephant Rants has moved to I've adjusted the community blogroll.

  2. Volunteer Tailgate Party is at Dagley Dagley Daily this week. Rocky Top Brigadiers, visit her site for details about how to send in your entries and everyone else go take a look on Thursday for the latest edition.

Friday, January 16, 2004

Changing to Moveable Type?

What do you think of this?

"About 3 months ago, the great Blogspot Exodus of '03 began - thanks to a special offer from 1&1 Internet. They are offering free website hosting for 3 years. You don't need a credit card, just a valid phone number which they use to send a PIN number. More information on this offer is available here. They will also register a Domain Name for you for a mere $5.99 (per year).

The service works great with Movable Type, but installation can be a bit tricky. That is why Kevin (Wizbang) organized the the Exodus Team. This is a crew of techs who are perfectly willing to get you up and running on Movable Type - also for free.

Think about it. Free hosting. Free setup. For $5.99 you can have your blog powered by Movable Type using your own domain name. If you are interested, go to 1&1 signup page here. Then send an email to Exodus (AT) wizbangblog (DOT) com requesting assistance. I believe the Exodus team has already assisted nearly 50 people making the switch."
Has anyone done either switched to 1&1 and/or availed themselves of the Exodus Team's services? The rest of you Moveable Type people out there - is it worth it to punt the free Blogspot for someone who is once-a-day-or-so poster?

Any recommendations would be appreciated....

(Link and idea via Resonance)

I Win

Pholph's Scrabble Generator

My Scrabble© Score is: 27.
What is your score? Get it here.

Google Search Of The Day

Seen lately referencing my site:

Um, I would tend to say no.

Disney Update

We've decided to take a trip back to Walt Disney World this fall. The last time we visited was 2000, when Brainyboy was 4 and Gigglegirl had just turned 1. It will be a vastly different experience this time around, I'm sure, and I hope that the World will be a merrier place if Eisner is gone and improvements start to occur by then. Mission: Space at Epcot, Mickey's Philharmagic at The Magic Kingdom, and other new rides are something to look forward to - plus I've never ridden the Haunted Mansion, and I'm looking forward to that.

There's a quote on the website that I like, that kind of sums it up:

"I am sorry to hear of the events at Disney. But as my daughter and I agree, Disney is not the Board. Disney is a verb. It means 'to create'."
Thanks, couldn't have said it better myself.

Friday, January 09, 2004

Happy Birthday To...


"Oh, did I say it was my birthday tomorrow? Oh well, in case you didn't know, it is! I'll be old as dog shit. Well, not really, I'll be 39, which was old as dog shit when I was in my early 20's, but now I realize life has just begun! Please feel free to PayPal money to me at anytime. Hee hee.
I just wanted everyone to remember that she's once again two years old than me.

Teresa is my across-the-hall co-worker, Intranet guru, and long-time friend. Wish her well!

One Year

Today is my one-year bloggiversary. Last January I started Inn of the Last Home - named after a fictitious Inn from the Dragonlance series of books - and asked South Knox Bubba to join the Rocky Top Brigade, and he graciously agreed. It's been an interesting year, and for those who may have started reading later in the year I wanted to submit to you what I consider are some of my favorite posts. To everyone who has ever visited, and especially those who are regulars, I humbly thank you. Enjoy.

Note: I've used permalinks, but this being Blogger the links may be, ahem, bloggered. If the link doesn't take you to the right post, then simply do a search for the title.


Why I Hate Snow Days (or...Why My Kids Look At Me Funny) - I love summer and hate winter. Here's why


February Sky - Tribute to the Columbia astronauts and on touching the face of God
Second Star to the Right, and Straight on till Hell - What the heck is up with Michael Jackson? If we knew then...
Jackson's Reply - A rebuttal, of sorts
Religious Persecution in East Tennessee...Who'd-a Thunk It? - My first take on the India Tracy/Union County case
Childish and Divisive Behaviour Disguised as Righteous Indignation - On "Freedom Fries" silliness


Confessions of a Salty Mind - My quest to give up chips for Lent. It worked!
The Small Quiet Voice - Gentle fisking of local columnist Don Williams regarding terrorism


Betrayal, Part 1 - On how I felt (and still feel) betrayed by the leftist wing of the Democratic party
Betrayal, Part 2
Volunteer Tailgate Party, Vol 1 - The first Volunteer Tailgate Party!


Some Random Thoughts on my Trip to Las Vegas
We Have Met the Bigots, and They Are Ours - Reply to a whiny Metropulse article on how Democrats are bigoted toward Republicans, and why each side has plenty of their own


A Round Dog Day - First of my posts highlighting my commuting conversations with my four-year-old daughter "GiggleGirl". Part of this article got picked up by the Knoxville News Sentinel.


Bookends, Part 1 - These two posts illustrate two instances of racism I witnessed going to and coming back from Hilton Head, SC
Bookends, Part 2
Suffer the Children - Thank you, Qusay Hussein old pal for throwing your 14-year-old son into the line of fire...
Oh My, What Have We Gotten Ourselves Into? - Ye Gods, we got a dog...


Fair - The origins of a mysterious recipe
The Magical Patriot Tour! - Sing along with John Lennon Ashcroft!
Bloggerview - I'm interviewed (kind of) by Queen Medb


Stripping for Anti-Globalization - This one got me a lot of Google hits, let me tell you
More Drive-time Conversations - Is it fall yet, Daddy?


Conversations - Read this, or my daughter will kick your butt
Blatant Discrimination? - Knoxville politics and racial diversity - polar opposites. Also a question about an archaic colloquialism
Panic - "I do..I do...I do believe in fairies! I do..I do...I do believe in fairies!" Well, at least I try...
Bad Ad! Bad Ad! - Actually, this got me even more Google links.
Put Me In, Coach - An homage to the Boys of Summer


Conversations -
Knock it off! Or I'll sick the Mynocks on you...
So then, why do it? - My initial take on the "God Amendment"
Nursery Rhymes - Castles, Clouds, boat parades, fun and frivolity and merriment for all


A Question - A simple question that got huge (for me) response about personal responsibility
Should Have Known... - The location of the Gates of Hell -- and no, it's not in Gainesville. (This is a Photoshopped parody I'm kind of proud of)
Grim Grinning Ghost.. - Another Photoshopped parody, about the real identity of the London ghost
Vilification and Clarification - Move along, nothing to see here. Oy vey. Actually, if you read only one post read this one - the little post that started the big Carrying Concealed Weapon controversy. I actually was termed "mentally deficient" for this
Conversations - Daddy's the Grinch!
Ghosts of Christmas Past - Remembrances of Christmas while growing up
You'll Shoot Your Eye Out - A finer moment of cinematic history in "A Christmas Story"
What I've Learned - My birthday post - things I've learned in 37 years

Thank you for an interesting year - hopefully here's to many more.

Thursday, January 08, 2004


I passed the presidential motorcade on my way to work this morning on Pelissippi Parkway. I couldn't see the President, of course, but I figure he must have been in one of the two long black stretch limos with the little flags on the front. Knox County and Blount County police were all along the route.

It was a little thrilling, actually - like him or not, Bush is the President of the United States and it's our civic duty to be respectful to the office. I hope everyone today remembers that.

(Quick check around the blogosphere...)

Probably not.

Volunteer Tailgate Party - Vol. XIX

Manish of Damn Foreigner is hosting the latest Volunteer Tailgate Party, a bi-weekly compilation of the best and brightest blatherings of the Rocky Top Brigade.

This edition of the VTP is the Best-of-2003 Edition, featuring the favorite or most meaningful posts from the members of the Rocky Top Brigade over the past 12 months. Enjoy!

Monday, January 05, 2004

The Top 10 Complaints of Time Travellers

10) It seems Citibank still has you in its system, and you owe about $30 million in late fees.

9) Step on one little butterfly in the distant past and everyone acts all mad at you once you return to... er, your post-apocalyptic world... um, ruled by sentient kudzu...oops....

8) Cell phone reception in the ninth century? Really friggin' lousy.

7) Hey! It was MY turn to execute Hitler!!

6) You used to be able to just hang out with your friends, but now all they want from you are tomorrow's winning lotto numbers.

5) You'd think someone with a time machine would realize how quickly a DeLorean would get dated.

4) It's surprising how violently intolerant historic cultures were of strangely dressed people who appear out of thin air.

3) It's so difficult to keep track of which Bush recession you're in the middle of.

2) By going forward a couple of weeks, then coming back and sending in all of next week's TopFive submissions, and still failing to get a #1, I've pretty well determined Greg hates me.

and the Number 1 Complaint of Time Travellers...

1) "I traveled back in time to kill my grandfather and all I got wa-- "

[ Copyright 2004 by Chris White ]
[ ]

I love Time Travel.

Sunday, January 04, 2004

From Where I'm Sitting...

Michael Totten relates Tim Blair's column in the Australian Daily Telegraph and speculates where his own true political leanings are:

" I’m not really a part of the sane left anymore. I’m either an independent, a moderate, a centrist, or an objectively pro-Bush yeehaw flag-waving nationalistic warmonger, depending on where you sit."
A commenter makes a generalization:

"The so-called insane left know that they can't defend their stance on either Iraq or the war on terror. It doesn't matter to them. Their hatred for the US and the international capitalist system takes precedence over all else.

Since both Saddam Hussein and al-qaeda are enemies of the US, they are friends of the insane left. The enemy of my enemy is my friend. How else can you explain the insane left?"
I think this is a popular view of the anti-war leftists mentality, but in common practice I don't think it's the majority. I would assume the majority of American anti-war leftists hate Saddam and Al-Quaeda but love America just fine. It just seems to me - especially from reading various farther-left blogs - that a big reason for opposing the war was that it was "trendy". The actual politics of it aren't important, but being noticed (and linked to) is.

I'd even be willing to bet the majority of protesters don't understand why they oppose(d) action in Iraq - it's just what all their cool friends were doing.

That's why it defies such description, especially coming from liberals who are supposed to take up for the little guy, the downtrodded (i.e. the Iraqi people).

Still another reason Liberals opposed the war is one big word: Payback. Payback for enduring 8+ years of Clinton-bashing and Payback for stealing the 2000 election. A lot of anger has been seething since 1992, and that's where a lot of the "oiiiiiil" mentality comes from.

Unfortunately, I agree with them in principle: I thought what the Republicans did to discredit Clinton while in office was much more heinous and disrespectful than anything he did himself, and I've never been quite convinced everything was done to verify the results of the election in Florida - however, many who feel the same way can't let go of the hatred, and the hurt, and the pride to see what their vendetta is doing to themselves and the integrity of the philosophy they're supposed to be representing.

It's up to people like Michael, to stay true to your principles when those who claim to represent you ignore them. I hope to do the same.

UPDATE (01/05/03): Michael continues this theme by offering a general description of the difference between liberals and leftists. These broad definitions obviously contain room for sub-groups, and cross-groups but I think it's very accurate from what I've encountered. I'd love to see a counterpart slightly-right-of-center blogger offer a similar look at different types of conservatives....

And I don't want to turn this site into an "InstaMichael", but I find myself agreeing with his viewpoint quite a bit - and saying it much better than I could - and I want to make sure I bring it to everyone's attention.

Friday, January 02, 2004

A Message From the Lord

Pat Robertson: God told him it's Bush in a 'blowout'

'Pat Robertson said Friday that God told him President Bush will be re-elected in a landslide.

"I think George Bush is going to win in a walk," the religious broadcaster said on his "700 Club" program on the Virginia Beach-based Christian Broadcasting Network, which he founded.

"I really believe I'm hearing from the Lord it's going to be like a blowout election in 2004. It's shaping up that way," Robertson said. '
Way to go out on a limb, there, Pat. I'll bet God personally informs you the sun will rise the next morning, too.

Thursday, January 01, 2004

First Post of the New Year

Begins with my 4-year-old's new lyrics to "Up on the Housetop":

GiggleGirl: Up on the Housetop, reinder pause, out jumps good old Santa Claus,
He's got a bag that's full of toys, all for little one's Christmas joys.

Oh, ho, ho...who wouldn't throw,
Oh, ho, ho, who wouldn't thr-o-o-o-o-w-w-w-w...up on the housetop click! click! click!
Down through the chimney with good Saint Nick!
I guess it's inevitable after all those cookies all over the world...