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I missed seeing the last episode of Arrested Development that aired – the one in which the Bluth’s fire the lawyer formerly known as Fonzie and replace him with the one and only Scott Baio. Since then, AD’s time slot has been filled by some piece of crap family sitcom. The rumours are now rampant that the show is being cancelled after the network pulled it from the line-up. Somebody’s got a petition going and another group is running a Save Our Bluths campaign. The show’s official website promises the show will return December 5.
I am not filled with confidence that American TV executives will stand behind a show that attracts a small but dedicated audience with its abstract humour and Happy Days in-jokes. Perhaps it will pull a Buffy?

Remember the episode of Seinfeld where George Costanza found success by going against all of his instincts? (In case you don’t here’s the script.) Well, I’ve tried to apply that principle to my own life, and it sucks ass everytime. Specifically, there have been times that you just want to retreat from all human contact and screw the world. When those moods have hit in the past year, I say to myself: “Nope, I’m going to the opposite, and try to reach out a little more!” So I call up friends, try to go out to things, volunteer etc. Perky, upbeat, almost Oprah-like.
Let me tell you: it doesn’t work.
And once again, maybe due to the black-ish cold rainy nights, or too much grammar homework, or educational interpersonal dramas, the urge to retreat into a cave and throw rocks at approachers is mighty tempting. It’s not a hate against any individual or their dastardly deeds that make me want to close ranks and focus on the walls. Just sometimes, I’ve realized, a girl needs time to think, smoke, watch movies, read and of course, write. I’m exhausted from worrying about why so-and-so’s not returning my calls.
I’ll not be going against my instincts this time. Until the walls become the world all around again.

It’s been a long day. You’re sitting at home and relaxing, maybe having a scotch and soda as you’re watching the news. They’ve got nothing else to report on in the way of cancer prevention or miracle methods of reversing aging, so the health report is on the obesity epidemic and diabetes blah blah blah. Cue up the pictures of tragic midriffs encased in sweatpants, people walking down the street holding ice cream. And suddenly – that’s your ginormous ass sprayed across the plasma widescreen. How would you feel?
I ask you, news reporter people to do two things: 1) ask yourself how you would feel if that was your bum illustrating what’s wrong with society and 2) instead of scapegoating the tragic underclass for being fat and malnourished, show some pictures of the gazillionaires who profit from the booming sales of Happy Meals and Mars Bars. That’s right – I want to see the faces of those who make and market all that so-called food.
I guess it’s not so easy to get pictures of the rich people as it is to walk out on the street to video normal people going about their business. Or ask their permission. You guys and girls are freaking reporters with all the might of Fox, CNN or CanWest Global behind you. Go ahead and ask if you can borrow a butt to make your point about what’s wrong with the way we live and eat. I dare you.

Unlike movies of yesteryear where the mousy girl who works in a bookstore is transformed into a glamorous international star (Funny Face starring Audrey Hepburn), the latest buzzy TV show feature Pamela Anderson as an international party girl who chucks it all to work in a bookstore. I have to give them credit for the clever title: “Stacked”.
I’m sure that she’ll have lots of situations where cute boys come in and ask for smart books and classic, manly Hemingway novels. Back in real life, I got punk shoplifters, motorized old men, pervy ne’er do wells and sci-fi geeks.
If Pam Anderson can get more hotties to wander the shelves, she may yet make up for that novel Star and the godawful rambling column they gave her in Jane. I want more people to buy books and look sexy reading them.

I run into the same problem every time I want to post an image of any Kids in the Hall pictures to illustrate my point, because there are none to be found! Oh, a few galleries of low-res screenshots by some obsessed fan, but nothing I want to post.
Sigh. Well, if you’re a fan of the show and watch the reruns and own the DVDs you’ll know what I’m referring to when I say I feel like Kathie in her secretarial slump. I’m in a blogging slump, and I feel like I’ve got to keep going when right now I just want to give up this project. But like Kathie and her obsession with the Blue Jays and their Big Bats, I also know that if you’re getting too fancy with your words and ideas, maybe its good to revisit what I wanted to accomplish in the first place by writing anything at all, dust off the dictionary and cruise the bookstores, and practice composing and putting ideas together.
Kathie says “And slumps may come and slumps may go, but you know gals, you just gotta show up and give a hundred and ten percent.”
On the topic of the previous post, after I wrote it I got to thinking about the concept of pseudonyms and alter egos. Sometimes I don’t like the stuff I write because I don’t like the identity of “the writer” and that troll thing made me realize I’ve got to come up with a better secret identity than something resembling Moe Syzlak.

moe the bartender

He put Baby in a corner, invited us all to be his guest, and was the man with gallows humour one liners.

We’ll miss you, Jerry.

Oshashiburi, it’s been a long time.

I hope everyone had a good Christmas holiday. I did nothing but eat and when I came up for air on Monday morning discovered the newspaper headlines about the earthquakes and tsunamis in Thailand, Indonesia, India, Malaysia and elsewhere. My neighbour was spending Christmas in Thailand so my first thought was “I hope he’s okay…” picturing going through his apartment and finding some really insane porn magazine stash. But he came back Tuesday morning and when he came over to get his keys his chief complaint was that he had called his “girlfriend” long-distance and another dude answered the phone. Then a bunch of TMI stuff related to that that you don’t wanna know about it even in this medium of tell-all confessionals and self-referential blabber.

I’ve both missed and dreaded blogging. Been working long hours lately on a temp assignment in the Teal Blue Prison and although they treat you well, the place is like a vaccuum on the brain. A deadly silent tower of binders, name badges and codes of conduct with a pretty view from the upper floors. It has taken a good week to get my energy back and build any sort of idea for blogging.

All I want to do is knit, really, and watch my badass TV and DVDs of Sex and the City.

I also managed to polish off the excellent Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. Them British dames know how to write an addictive historical crime thriller.

I expect to write a lot more in January. It’s always a month to stay in bed as much as possible and crawl forth only to eat and write, usually in that order.

My new knitting hobby is an excellent excuse to watch a lot of bad tv and fun movies. Since I’m often looking down at my work while laying about on the couch, I like things that don’t require much visual attention. Here then, are some viewing suggestions:

TV

I won’t try to pretend this is all obscure and cool stuff, because knitting is the excuse I use to watch all the trashy crap I can.

Elimidate (you don’t want to look at the skankfest anyway)

The Surreal Life (the second season currently playing on Much More Music is much more fighty and conflict-driven than the first, thus fun to listen to)

Saved By the Bell

Iron Chef (The original Japanese version, not the sucky Iron Chef America. Allez cuisine!)

Airline (For those who can relate to the hell of customer service)

Pretty much any celebrity-gossip type show, especially the non-stop parade of them on Much More Music.

Movies

These are not bad movies per se, but uncomplicated enough that you don’t need to pay very close attention to the plot, and good enough to watch until you know it by heart. This is mostly girly stuff too.

Grease (yeah, you know the words)

Sixteen Candles

She’s All That

Clockwatchers (its about temping, so its got that mindless repetition thing happening)

Dirty Dancing

The Craft

The Wedding Singer

Viva Las Vegas (or whatever your favourite Elvis movie happens to be)

Jerry Maguire (as with all of Cameron Crowe movies, its got killer dialogue and soundtrack)

If nothing in my collection appeals, I usually flip on TBS and they’ve always got something Hollywood like What Women Want or Rush Hour on. Sometimes they’ll even play a movie twice in a row.

If you are more of a social knitter and in the Vancouver area, come knit with me and others at fine pubs twice a month.

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