Monday, May 31, 2004

TV Tuesday

Week 12 - Marathon TV Watching

Hope everyone who was celebrating had a safe Memorial Day weekend!! Hopefully you got an extra day for your weekend!! Now on to this week's questions! Be kind, it's my first week solo! :)

1. In the US many stations run "marathons" all day on Monday, many stations have also went to running all weekend marathons of old sitcoms. So question number one is: Did you watch any of the marathons running this year? In part? In whole?

No, we watched Nickelodean all day here.

2. Is there a show you'd like to see run an all day marathon? On the flipside is there a show you'd avoid in marathon?

I'd watch a M*A*S*H marathon, as there are a lot of the older episodes with Trapper and Henry Blake either I've never seen, or haven't seen but once. I wouldn't watch any of the "fluff" 50's/60's shows in marathon, like Leave it to Beaver or Petticoat Junction. Ok, maybe Green Acres.

3. Is there a show/movie/program that brings back special memories for you and what is it?

There's one episode of M*A*S*H - near the end of its run in the early '80s. In high school drama class, we did a Reader's Theatre production, meaning all the actors sit in one area and read/act out their parts without blocking or costumes. I took the episode where a soldier has died and doesn't realize he's dead, and Klinger has kidneystones, and taped and transcribed the entire episode on a typewriter. We then performed the episode in class. I was Hawkeye and Father Mulcahy :) Whenever I see that episode, it reminds me of high school.

~Bonus~ What show featuring those who protect your country (fiction or non-fiction) is your favorite?

I'll leave that as an exercise for the reader.

~Bonus #2~ Out of curiosity, what's the longest you've ever watched TV in one stretch?!

Interesting question. Unfortunately, it was probably the 9/11 coverage...

See you next week! Same time! Same channel!!

Friday, May 28, 2004


I hit 20,000 visitors to my site this afternoon around 10 till 4.

Thank you, everyone, for reading the Inn and all your comments. I appreciate it!

A Choice

Stalking the Bogeyman

Go quickly and read this man's story of a choice. A man who chose to walk about from the mouth of the abyss, and found another way to exorcise his demons.

Not for the weak of heart, but tremendously uplifting. I can't stop thinking about this man's courage.

"This time last year I was plotting to kill a man.

The man I was going to kill was the one who raped me in 1978, when I was seven years old."

(Thanks to Missives Anonymous for the link)

Thursday, May 27, 2004

My Two-Second Dan Brown Book Reviews

The Da Vinci Code: Read It! Now!!!! (but only if you're not easily offended by speculative religious topics)

Angels and Demons: Read It!

Deception Point: Read It!

Digital Fortress: Read it only if you have a lot of free time and a low tolerance for bad plotting and shallow characters.

Theatre Thursday

Week 2 - Trilogies.

Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King has officially hit the stores this week (I bought the first copy at my local Borders yesterday). Trilogies have been popular in the movies for years. This week we look at questions based on some famous cinematic triumvarites:

1) The Back to the Future Trilogy sent Marty McFly 30 years into the future, 30 years into the past (twice!) and 100 years into the past. Which of these time periods would you like to visit in your 1.21 gigawatt-powered DeLorean, and why?

I think I'd like to visit 30 years into the future to make sure we make it out of today in one piece.

2) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy was, of course, based on a famous trio of novels by JRR Tolkien. What sci-fi/fantasy/genre novels or series would you like to see turned into a Peter-Jackson-directed/George-Lucas-written/Steven-Speilberg-produced trilogy?

The Dragonlance Series of novels is an excellent fantasy series that comes in two ready-to-produce trilogies. IMHO, they are better than Lord of the Rings, but that's just me. No, actually, they really are better.

3) Next summer, there will be two complete Star Wars trilogies in the history books. What's your strangest or most interesting Star Wars experience?

Probably one of my best experiences is I was the first person into the theatre for the first showing of the original Star Wars the day before it opened in Knoxville back in 1977. A friend of mine and I won tickets on the radio to a preview showing they held the day before the grand opening, and he and I wormed our way to the front of the line to get into the theatre. When the ropes dropped I sprinted into the theatre first and got the best seat ;) I was 9.

Bonus) While the Jurassic Park and Indiana Jones movies are currently only trilogies, plans are in the works for a fourth movie in both series. What trilogy might've been better served with a fourth movie? Which trilogy would've been better if they had left it at only one movie?

Can't think of a trilogy that needs another movie, but the one that should've stayed at one is easy: The Matrix.

That's it till next time! Be sure to leave your name and blog address in the Comments when you've answered the questions.

And remember, as the Terminator said in the first part of his famous trilogy, "I'll be back."

Volunteer Tailgate Party - Vol. XXVII

Stoney of Rebel Yell, the husband of the blogger with the unpronouncable name, is hosting the latest Volunteer Tailgate Party, a bi-weekly compilation of the best and brightest blatherings of the Rocky Top Brigade.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Don't Get Any Ideas, L.

Take the quiz: "Which American City Are You?"

New York
You're competative, you like to take it straight to the fight. You gotta have it all or die trying.

Seen at Hatamaran.

Last Night's Season Finale of 24

Well, it was nice Chase was able to lend a helping hand to the investigation....

Do it.

Monday, May 24, 2004

TV Tuesday

Week 11 - Everybody may or may not love Raymond

Ray Romano and co. just signed on for one more year of Everybody Loves Raymond, for record salaries. Situation comedies have been popular on TV since the beginning, with Lucy and co. being one of the first. So what's your take on sitcoms?

1. What's your favorite sitcom?

My Favorite sitcom is The Dick Van Dyke Show. Second favorite is M*A*S*H.

2. Is there a sitcom you really don't like?

Everybody Loves Raymond. Bleh.

3. Which sitcom did you used to like, but now it just seems too hokey?

I loved "Grace Under Fire" for the first couple of years it was on, but one season they inexplicably aged her son Quint about 5 years, Brett Butler really tanked with the booze and drugs and the bottom fell out of the show. A shame.

~Bonus~ If your life was a sitcom, what would the title be?

Barry'd Treasure, about a real family with intelligent parents and humorous situations raising small children in a small town in America. No Roseanne, Ed Bundy or Bob Sagett in sight.

Thanks for playing, and be kind to Insane Faery, your new TV Tuesday guru. I've enjoyed playing along with you, and wish you many more seasons of fun! ~ Isabella

And remember the immortal words of Homer Simpson: "The answers to life's problems aren't at the bottom of a bottle. They're on TV."

21 Things

Yet Another Meme:

1. Which political party do you typically agree with?

Democrat, generally.

2. Which political party do you typically vote for?


3. List the last five presidents that you voted for?

2000 - Gore
1996 - Clinton
1992 - Clinton

I am not ashamed of any of those choices.

4. Which party do you think is smarter about the economy?

Considering neither opposition party lets the other get anything started, who knows? I don't profess to know much about global economics anyway, so I have no real idea.

5. Which party do you think is smarter about domestic affairs?

Democrat, in that their policies are typically geared toward empowering society whereas Republican policies are generally geared toward empowering the individual. There's nothing inherently wrong with empowering individuals, certainly, but it often comes at the expense of the former.

6. Do you think we should keep our troops in Iraq or pull them out?

Keep them until Iraq is stable enough to leave behind a functioning government and a trustworthy peace-keeping force.

7. Who, or what country, do you think is most responsible for 9/11?

Well, Osama Bin Laden (or whoever in Al Qaeda made the final "GO" decision for the mission).

8. Do you think we will find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq?

I think we'll eventually find evidence of where they are, or were, which will put to rest any questions. I personally have believed from the start that they were trucked to Syria.

9. Yes or no, should the U.S. legalize marijuana?


10. Do you think the republicans stole the last presidential election?

I think they did everything they could to capitalize from a huge logistical foul-up, and those who happened to be in charge that could steer things their way, did. If the governor of Florida had been Democrat, Al Gore likely would be president now.

This doesn't mean anyone did anything illegal, or that there was any kind of preplanned conspiracy. It just means circumstances fell in such a way that those who could, did.

11. Do you think bill Clinton should have been impeached because of what he did with Monica Lewinski?


12. Do you think Hillary Clinton would make a good president?

If she were given the true respect a president should have, who knows. Maybe. She seems to be a smart, tough, no-nonsense kind of person. But from eight years of Democratic president experience and almost four years of Republican president experience, it's doubtful any president in the modern era will be able to govern effectively without having to worry about constant, unrelenting political opposition.

Compared to, say a turnip? Oh, you mean Pat Robertson?

13. Name a current democrat who would make a great president:

Well, I'd still like to see what kind of president Al Gore would have made if he started in January 2001. However, with the current Democratic mindset against the war, I don't think anyone would make a good president right now, unless they could think for themselves. And Gore has shown in the past year that he can't, which is a shame. I do have a lot of respect for Tennessee's governor, Phil Bredesen. I hope he continues his political career beyond the state level sometime in the future.

Ok, I'll go with David Palmer. Well, before this season of 24, at least. How the might have fallen....

14. Name a current republican who would make a great president:

Can't think of one.

I actually don't think we will have another "great president" until one takes office that is apolitical, or a centrist. Like that's going to happen anytime soon.

15. Do you think that women should have the right to have an abortion?

Not touching this one - nope, nope, nope.

16. What religion are you?

Christian, United Methodist.

17. Have you read the Bible all the way through?

Not all the way through, but many passages.

18. What’s your favorite book?

When I was a kid, my favorite book for a long time was "Tunnel in the Sky" by Robert Heinlein.

Nowadays, I read so many sci-fi, mystery and suspense books it's difficult for any to stand out on their own. I enjoyed The Da Vinci Code for its puzzles and plotting, but it was nowhere near a "favorite" book.

19. Who is your favorite band?

The Beatles.

20. Who do you think you'll vote for president in the next election?

That's the big question. I don't know, and probably won't decide until I get into the booth. Let's just say John Kerry has a l-o-o-o-o-o-o-n-g way to go before he can win my confidence as the leader of our country. The fact that we're still alive 2-1/2 years after 9/11 leans me toward Bush by default although I despise him. I guess I will be voting for a philosophy and a mindset more than a man.

21. What website did you see this on first?

Thursday, May 20, 2004

The Prodigal Cat Returns


"I can't believe it! Our Stripey is home after nearly a month's absence!"
Go give Leslie your best wishes, she really loves this cat and it had been missing for a long time....

She Hatesssssss It!

Sheila's Moment at the Cracks of Doom
"Came inside. Took shoes off. Put keys away. Took a shower. Put on terricloth robe. Walked into my room. Turned on light.

And ... saw the biggest "s" I have ever seen in my life - on my wall. [Ed. note: "S" means spider]

I stood - frozen - I did not know WHAT TO DO."
Read on for a great show of courage and intestinal fortitude, as Sheila confronts her deepest fear right straight in the fangs.

Good on ya, Sheila!

Marshall, Will and Holly...

Land of the Lost - LOTS of info about extras, final details, and early art

For a great number of 30-somethings like myself, Land of the Lost was the last, best guilty pleasure of childhood. Endless Saturday mornings, following the adventures of 3 travellers lost in a world of dinosaurs - it just didn't get any better than this.

A couple years ago TVLand broadcast some of these episodes, and I taped them. My kids love them, even in today's Jurassic Park era. Because they're good shows.

If you remember this show, check out the DVD and share them with your kids...

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Theatre Thursday

Week 1 - Animation.
Shrek 2 opens this weekend in theaters, hoping to be an even bigger hit than the prequel. From Antz, to Mulan, to The Lion King, to Heavy Metal, even Anime; There are hundreds of animated movies.

1. What is your favorite animated movie?

My favorite animated movie, and pretty near the perfect movie, plot-wise, is Beauty and the Beast.

2. Which animated movie is your least favorite?

I can't stand Anime - the animation, acting and direction are so crude as to be unwatchable.

3. Who is your favorite animated movie character?

Either Lumiere from Beauty and the Beast or Timon from The Lion King.

We miss you in Toontown.
Thanks for playing. Don't forget to leave a link to your blog in the comments, so we can all see what your thoughts are on animation.

No Imagination

Giuliani: NYC not told about al Qaeda briefing

This is hard to believe:

'Former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani told the panel investigating the September 11, 2001, attacks that city officials prepared for everything they could think of in response to terror threats but that they never imagined that planes would be used as missiles."


Giuliani said the city had prepared for bioterrorism threats including anthrax, smallpox and dirty bombs. "We never thought there would be planes used as missiles attacking buildings."'
This shows the lack of creativity on the part of these so-called "preparedness planners." Apparently none of them has ever read a Tom Clancy novel. Or seen Independence Day. Or a single James Bond movie. Or watched The X-Files. Heck, apparently none of them has ever read a Spiderman comic.

Popular media has been dreaming up doomsday scenarios and supervillians and megalomaniacs and counter-terrorist units for years and decades. It's hard to believe that planes-used-as-missles never once emerged as a possible threat to NYC buildings.

Heck, only a couple weeks prior to 9/11, the premiere episode of The Lone Gunman, and X-Files spinoff, concluded with that exact premise - that of a hijacked airliner headed directly into one of the Twin Towers.

Maybe we need Jerry Bruckenheimer and Chris Carter in Homeland Security...

More about Wonka

To follow up on this post:

I finished watching the AMC "DVD" broadcast of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

I just wanted to add a few things about Grandpa Joe. Before, I pointed out my belief that Joe was a bad influence on Charlie by thinking only of his own fortune and convincing him to break the rules.

There's one more real instance of Joe's selfishness - at the end, when Wonka has given the factory to Charlie, the candymaker says the boy and his family can live there.

"And me???" Grandpa Joe asks, hungrily.

I never liked that line, nor the expression on Jack Albertson's face. It gave the impression that he was only thinking of himself, and his comfort.

But earlier, when Mr. Wonka tests Charlie's honesty in the office, Grandpa Joe vehemently comes to his grandson's defense. But, again, all the attention from Mr. Wonka is on Grandpa Joe, not Charlie. As if he knew it was Joe that would be the turning point. And Joe passed, as well.

Ah, another day another theory gone by the wayside...

Another interesting tidbit picked up from the commentary:

1) Wonka's first entrance into the courtyard of the Chocolate Factory,
2) The first step into the Candy Room

Both were the cast's genuine reactions to the scenes. Until they started filming Wilder's entrance, limping down the long path to the gates of the factory, nobody had met him yet. So the children's and parents' reactions were genuine.

Similarly, none in the cast had seen the Candy Room until they stepped into it as camera's were rolling, so their reactions to the mammoth chamber were genuine as well.

Signs You Spend Too Much Time Around Your Kids

You're driving down the highway...

You spy a Volkswagen beside you on the road.

You yell, "Red Punchbuggy! No Punch Backs!!!"

...and you are alone in the car...

Monday, May 17, 2004

Star Wars: Episode III Title Revealed?

Either Birth of The Empire or Birth of An Empire, according to The Sun

I kind of like Birth of An Empire better, if either are actually accurate. But I like them both. If it's true, I'll be much more pleased than after the other two prequel titles were announced.

TV Tuesday

Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale, a tale of a fateful trip...

Jay Leno once quipped when he was alone in an elevator his mind always reverted to the lowest song he could think of: "Come and listen to a story 'bout a man named Jed..."

Love them or hate them, TV theme songs stick with us for years! If you're stuck on some lyrics, click here for a comprehensive page with words I never even knew existed. (Who knew I Dream of Jeannie had lyrics???)

On that musical note:

1. What is your favorite TV theme song?

Wow, that's tough. I really liked, and still do like, the "Friends" theme. Gilligan's great, and so is WKRP. However, I think my favorite is "Mad About You"

"Tell me why, I love you like I do,
Tell me who - can stop my heart as much as you.
Tell me all your secrets and I'll tell you most of mine...
Let's take each other's hand, as we jump into the final frontier!
(Mad About You, baby!)"

2. Which song drives you crazy enough to hit mute on the remote?

Family Ties with "What Would We Do Baby, Without Us". It never fit the tone of the series...

3. Which song are your proud to say you remember (most of) the lyrics to???

The Gene Roddenberry-penned lyrics to the Star Trek theme..

~Bonus~ Put the lyrics on your page (from memory), and I'll list you next week in the TV Tuesday Theme Song Hall of Fame. Don't forget to leave a comment so I'll know you posted!

"Beyond the rim of the starlight,
My love is wandrin' in starflight,
I know he'll find in star-clustered reaches,
Love, strange love a star woman teaches!
Although his journey ends never,
His Star Trek will go on forever,
And tell him while he wanders his starry sea...
Remember - remember me."

That is just sad...

Thanks for playing, and remember:

"Got kind of tired packing and unpacking,
Town to town and up and down the dial
Maybe you and me were never meant to be,
But baby think of me once in awhile.

I'm at WKRP in Cincinnati..."

Willy Wonka - the Untold Story

I'm in the middle of watching AMC's showing of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, complete with DVD-style written commentary along the bottom of the screen.

One fact I'd never heard before was that, due to a sponsorship agreement with Quaker Oats who agreed to launch a line of "Wonka" chocolate bars to promote the film, Quaker required the producers of the movie to ensure the name "Willy Wonka" was in the title. So they changed the title from the original novel's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I never heard that, and had always wondered.

I've rewatched this classic a number of times lately with my kids, and have come to an inescapable, but depressing conclusion: Grandpa Joe was a golddigger and ultimately a rather selfish man. Consider:

1) When Charlie returns home with the Golden Ticket, Grandpa Joe immediately takes focus away from Charlie - getting out of bed for the first time, and singing, "I've got a Golden Ticket!" Right from the beginning we learn It's all about him...

2) Grandpa Joe's the one who talked Charlie into drinking the Fizzy Lifting Drinks. If it weren't for Joe's recklessness and disregard for the rules, Charlie would've never gotten in trouble at the end. Joe says, "Let's try it, Charlie - nobody's looking!" And Charlie, who Joe knows idolizes him, follows suit.

More later as I watch more of the movie. There are other examples.

Sunday, May 16, 2004

This and that from the weekend

  • Rev. Donald Sensing slams the United Methodist Council of Bishops resolution condemning the US and the Coalition's "cycle of violence" it is creating in Iraq. Sensing notes there seems to be no condemnation for the actions of Al Qaeda or Baathists, and the Council's attitude seems to indicate they don't understand the consequences of US inaction in the War on Terror.

  • Les Jones is back from his vacation, and has some interesting stories about his trip to Florida. He also mentions the closing of another restaurant I've been to a couple of times in Alcoa, the Elkmont Grill.

    Maybe Hatamaran will tell you of the time we had lunch there and a light fixture almost fell on her head...

  • And on a sad note, South Knox Bubba has now officially Lost It. Bubba "interprets" a hypothetical scenario posited by James Lileks as a wish for an American city to be destroyed by a nuclear bomb. Read Lilek's post, then Bubba's (and his commenters) and you'll be amazed at the disconnect from reality. It's unfortunate, because what used to be a fine blog written by someone with rare insight into life (whom I considered a friend and now ignores my emails) has fallen so far to catering to the far left audience it's now incoherent. Either that, or he actually believes what he writes. I don't know what's worse.

UPDATE: A little bit of clarification regarding Lilek's post, for those who need it (you know who you are).

He's commenting on the lack of condemnation (or meaningful condemnation) of the Berg murder, by mainstream, non-fundamentalist Islam. It's a pattern that's continued since Al Qaeda were first identified as being behind the 9/11 attacks. Perfunctory words of sympathy, but..

"But where are the rallies and marches outside the Saudi embassies demanding an end to funding extremism?"
It seems more and more apparent that mainstream Islam refuses to take sides in the War on Terror. Since Al Qaeda and those of their ilk preach a perversion of modern Islam you'd think there'd be more protests, more calls for these "infidels" of Islam to be shunned. But that hasn't happened. Maybe Muslims are hedging their bets, waiting to see which way the tide turns.

Lileks acknowledges that the US has the power to cripple Islam in a few swift strokes. It could (meaning, it has the ability) to destroy Mecca, to destroy Syria, to destroy Saudi Arabia, to destroy Iran. But it won't, obviously, as a first strike and the enemy knows that.

"But it would be a crime greater than the crime that provoked such an act, and in the end that would stay our hand. They know we won’t do it.
Then he poses (are you listening?) a situation that would force a lot of fence-sitters to choose sides: the loss of an American city to a terrorist nuclear device:

There is another path, of course. Simply put: if a US city is nuked, the US will have to nuke someone, or let it stand that the United States can lose a city without cost to the other side. Defining “the other side” would be difficult, of course – do you erase Tehran to punish the mullahs? Make a crater out of Riyahd? These are exactly the sort of decisions we never want to make. But let’s say it happens. Baltimore: fire and wind. Gone. That horrible day would clarify things once and for all. It’s one thing for someone in a distant city to cheer the fall of two skyscrapers: from a distance, it looks like a bloody nose. But erasing a city is a different matter.
Everyone will have to choose sides. That would be one possible beginning of the end of this war."
This hypothetical scenario is but one of several others he supposes could happen to polarize the world Islamic opinion, but hopefully the changes are just happening where we can't see them:

" A minimal-casualty defeat of the Islamists will require the help of Islam. I'd like to think that will happen on its own, without some exterior catastrophe to force the issue."
So there it is. Understand?

Thursday, May 13, 2004

A Series of Unfortunate Events

First a softball players slides into home onto my wrist, then I slam the car door shut on my thumb. But, the damage to my left hand continues...

I'm sitting there this morning, minding my own business and reading the paper. I reach over to turn the page, when suddenly there's a sharp stabbing pain in my hand... I jump, and see a fat happy wasp sitting on my leg. I jump to my feet, flinging my paper away with a shout and stomp on the little denizen from below, fulfilling my fatherly protective duties...

It has been 25 years probably since I was last stung by anything. And I'd like to wait another 25, thank you...

Volunteer Tailgate Party - Vol. XXVI

Medb, the blogger with the unpronouncable name, is hosting the latest Volunteer Tailgate Party, a bi-weekly compilation of the best and brightest blatherings of the Rocky Top Brigade.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Good Lord, It's True

To refresh your memories, here's my blog entry from March 15:

Watch the Skies

The cicadas are returning to East Tennessee.

I showed the picture of them in the newspaper to four-year-old GiggleGirl, and she asked what they did. In addition to making a lot of noise, I told her sometimes the couch-sized bugs swoop down on eagle-sized wings, scoop up little kids and fly away with them.

I don't think she appreciated that very much.
Little did I know....and I tremble to say...

Cicadas Kill - Protect Yourself

"How large are Cicadas? Many of the Cicadas in this year's strain stand over 3 feet tall and weigh over 50 pounds. The largest Cicada to appear in Cincinnati...[caused] several hours of downtown traffic congestion while it searched for food in the form of human children. This giant Cicada was eventually shot by Cincinnati Police who mistook a spot of shiny tree sap on its leg for a gun. "

(Hat tip: Sugarfused, who has the gory photos)

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

TV Tuesday

Reunited and it feels so good!

Tuesday at 9/8 central CBS is running the 159th episode of one of it's classic TV series: The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited. This episode was written 40 years later, with all the surviving cast members in it. This will be an actual episode, with the actors in character, not just actors sitting around reminiscing about the good old days.

Bill Persky, the show's writer-producer, said in TV Guide: "Everybody's memory was not what it was. We could remember a joke from 40 years ago, but we couldn't remember whether we decided to do a scene this way or that way. Everybody had something they almost remembered, so when we were looking for a title, I came up with The Dick Van Dyke Show Almost Remembered. The comic timing was terrific- except when they couldn't hear anything. There was a lot of "What? What? What?" The greatest below-the-line expense was for hearing aid batteries."

On that note, how do you feel about reunion shows?

1. What show would you like to see brought back for an hour or two episode, to see how the characters are doing now? (This should be a show that it might be possible to do a reunion on.)

1st choice: M*A*S*H, definitely. I believe all the actors are still with us - Alda, Farrell, Morgan, Stiers, Swit, Farr, Burghoff, Christopher, (I think even Wayne Rogers is still kicking around, though would Trapper now have to be played by Pernell Roberts?) Unfortunately, Larry Linville has passed away - Frank would've been great fun (and of course, McLean Stephenson couldn't come back even if he were still alive). Actually, I'd be happy for a 2-hour episode of just Hawkeye and BJ sitting around drinking coffee and discussing their medical careers and their lives through Vietnam, the Reagan years, etc.

2nd choice: Picket Fences but it would have to be done v-e-r-r-r-y carefully with David Kelley writing the script, but not being allowed within 100 feet of the production stage - I've seen what he did with Ally McBeal and the Practice, etc.

2. Pick a show that could not realistically be brought back for a reunion, because some or all of the cast members are gone. What if they could have done a reunion before it was too late? Name the show you'd most like to see.

It might've been fun to see a Happy Days reunion where Richie and Lori Beth Cunningham were the parents of two teenagers in the 70's....but That 70's Show pretty much has covered that niche.

Another fun possibility: Alien Nation

3. Which reunion show have you watched and thought "Wow, they should have left that one alone!"

I was actually looking forward to the "Facts of Life" reunion for the sake of seeing Jo again (ah, my teen years...) but when I heard they actually decided her character was dead, I didn't watch it.

~Bonus~ Which do you prefer- a "reunion" episode of the series, or a "cast reunion" where the actors sit around and talk about the making of the show?

A full new "episode". Save the sitting-around-talking for the season DVD's.

Thanks for playing, and while you're watching Dick Van Dyke Revisited remember this: (found in TV Guide May 9-15 issue)

~ Actual furniture from the New Rochelle living room set was tracked down and used in the special.
~ An early title considered for the original show was "Double Trouble".
~ Johnny Carson was ever so briefly considered for the part of Rob.
~ The show was almost cancelled midway through the first season because it ran against the popular "Perry Como" show on NBC.

And who could forget:

"Oh Rob!!!"

Friday, May 07, 2004

Another One Bites the Dust

I just heard today that the great new West Knoxville restaurant Northern Exposure has been closed for several months. This was one of our favorite new places to eat, and I'm sorry to see it go. We drove by later this evening after the "thumb" incident, and confirmed the sad news. Northern Exposure offered a unique German/Pennsylvania Dutch style of cooking that we'd never seen in Knoxville, plus it had a great, dark and brooding atmosphere fitting a German-style restaurant. We wish the owners success in whatever their next endeavour may be.

Northern Exposure is added to our list of The Cooker and Miami Subs as late, great unique Knoxville eateries that we frequented.

Ah, well, there's always Aubreys...

How I Spent My Friday Evening

The gang and I all went to Sonic tonight. Sonic has nothing to do with this story, really (except I'd like to explain to everyone how truly wonderful and special their Cherry or Watermelon Slushes are), but it's the basis of what happened.

So we're getting ready to leave. The Ewoks decided they'd like to sit at the little tables out front (but, but, but.....the point of a Sonic is to Get Your Meal Delivered To Your Car So You Can Eat In Your Car. That's why it's built that way! But I digress). I've strapped Gigglegirl into her car seat, and stepping back I hold the edge of the frame with my left hand and slam the sliding door of the Ford Windstar closed.

On my left thumb.

For a moment, time froze. I looked at my thumb, half inside and half outside. There wasn't a lot of pain, and for a moment I thought, "This door has now automatically locked. It will take me seven minutes to contort myself around with my right hand to reach through the open driver-side window to push the auto-unlock, and even longer to convey the direness of my situation to my wife". But, thankfully I avoided the stress of all that decision making and simply opened the sliding door back up. Ah, the elegance of simplicity.

I looked at my thumb, still gripping the frame. It appeared to be in one piece, which is truly a good thing - especially if you work at a computer keyboard for a living designing websites, as I do. Then...oh, like a snickering childcatcher from "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang", the pain slithered malevolantly in.

Now, I'm The Dad. The Dad doesn't show pain, or scream, or start singing, "Carmina Burana" at the top of his lungs in agony. Not with impressionable 8-year-old boys around. BrainyBoy was, however, oblivious on the other side of the car, sucking down the remains of his Watermelon Slush (good taste, he). So I do the most manly thing I can do - I hunch over, thumb between my knees and wait. For the inevitable.

"What happened?" my wife asked, waiting patiently in the passenger seat.

i slammed my thumb in the door


I slammed my thumb in the door!!

So, after a few quick breaths I regained my composure, re-closed Gigglegirl's door (c-a-r-e-f-u-l-l-y), got in and gingerly started the car. I looked at the thumb, and tested range of motion (Fonzie "Aaay" move? check Hitchhike? check Emperor Commodus passing judgement on Maximus? check) Ok, nothing appears to be broken. Pain's lessening, actually. Not too bad. Drive off, a little wiser.

Actually the worst part was seeing half a thumb outside the car, and hoping against hope that the inside part was still actually attached.

Invent a Memory

What a cool idea.

Invent a memory of me, and write it in the comments. The only stipulation is it has to be completely false. Oh, and keep it (relatively) clean....

(Hat Tip: Jill, via Busy Mom)

Thursday, May 06, 2004


I've got a bit of a sore throat, and a little cough. Nothing major, but I have about 300 hours of sick time coming to me....y'know the weather's supposed to be pretty nice the next week or so.....

Monday, May 03, 2004

TV Tuesday

The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world…

In honor of Mother’s Day this Sunday (what- you forgot? Shame on you! Get thee to a Hallmark Store!) This week’s questions will be about that beloved group of ladies we all know and love- TV moms.

1. Who is/was your favorite TV mom?

Probably Marion Cunningham from Happy Days. Warm and friendly, and goofy as well.

2. Was she a realistic mother, or more of a TV fantasy type?

More fantasy, since it took place in the idealized 50's.

3. Which TV mom did you find the most unrealistic? Or if you’d rather: creepy – sappy – mean – you choose the adjective, and you name the mom.

I did not, do not, and never will care for Claire Huxtable from The Cosby Show. She had a look that said, "Heathcliff are an absolute idiot, and I don't know why I even listen to you..." Ick.

~Bonus~ No disrespect to your dear old mum, but which TV mom did you think it might be neat to have as your own?

I think Carol Brady would've been a great mom. But not nearly as good as my mom. Hi Mom!

Thanks for playing! Happy Mother’s Day, and always remember the loving words of TV mom Roseanne Conner: “If those kids are alive by the time he comes home at the end of the day, then hey, I’ve done my job!”

How Cool Is That?

The owners of recent Kentucky Derby winner "Smarty Jones" live in Boca Grande.

(Related stories about my adventures in Boca Grande.)

The Big Gold Golf Ball

This would be very good news:

Mayor hopes to return spotlight to Sunsphere (Registration Required)

"But as one of the city's most recognized symbols, and with its next-door proximity to the Knoxville Convention Center, Mayor Bill Haslam says he would like to see the attraction reopened and put to use.

City spokeswoman Amy Nolan said the new funding would address the tower's faulty elevators and problems with its heating and air conditioning, as well as the invasion of several birds through its cracking exterior."
There is no mention of a rumor that srange puddles of melted wax keep being found on the outside panels.

If this goes forward, it's a good think for Knoxville. Let's hope we can find the money to get the Sunsphere open again permanantly, and maybe again put a restaurant up in the top.

I went up in the Sunsphere exactly twice, during the World's Fair twenty (gasp!) two years ago. It's time to go again and take my kids, this time.

Cheap Shots

Bad vibes go out to:
  • TDOT - for closing one lane of Pellissippi Parkway, both ways, and only working on one side at once. Since they're apparently only employing one crew, only one side of the parkway can be worked on at a time, rendering the other side uselessly reduced to one lane. They've stripped half of the asphalt off the lane, rendering it unuseable to traffic. The Parkway is now a ParkingLot. Nice job, folks. That's my daily commute, and unless my office moves or I figure out how to work from home, my drive time has doubled both ways. Thanks.

  • Local Media - There was a story over the weekend about some new controversy regarding UT's incoming president, . Seems the local media couldn't wait to start digging up dirt about the guy, and I seem to remember thinking the "dirt" was awfully suspect and reaching. Today, however, I can't find the story on the Sentinel's or WBIR's websites and I can't remember the exact details enough for a good rant. Guess they got the hint that it wasn't that important in the first place...