Saturday, June 30, 2007

I'm the cult of per-sa-nal-TV


So, on Friday, TV Guide came out with a list of the "top 30 cult TV shows of all time".
[aside - why do these lists even bother saying "of all time"? Shouldn't they wait until ...I don't know, the end of time, before compiling these things? Especially since they composed a 'top 25 cult TV shows of all time' about 5 years back.]


The article is here.

And here is the list:
Bolded show numbers are ones that I have seen, bolded titles means that I greatly enjoyed them.

30) Strangers with Candy (1999-2000)
29) Absolutely Fabulous (1994-2003)
28) Stargate SG-1 (1997-2007)
27) H.R. Pufnstuf (1969-1971)
26) Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman (1975-1978)
25) Firefly (2002-2003)
24) Twin Peaks (1990-1991)
23) Dark Shadows (1966-1971)
22) Doctor Who (1963-present)
21) Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000)

20) The Avengers (1966-1969)
19) Quantum Leap (1989-1993)
18) Veronica Mars (2004-2007)
17) Beauty and the Beast (1987-1990)
16) Babylon 5 (1994-1998)
15) Family Guy (1999-present)
14) Battlestar Galactica (2003-present)
13) Mystery Science Theater 3000 (1989-1999)
12) Pee-Wee's Playhouse (1986-1991)
11) Jericho (2006-present)

10) Xena: Warrior Princess (1995-2001)
9) Twilight Zone (1959-1964)
8) The Simpsons (1989-present)

7) The Prisoner (1967-1968)
6) Monty Python's Flying Circus (1969-1974)
5) Lost (2004-present)
4) Farscape (1999-2003)
3) Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003)
2) The X-Files (1993-2002)

1) Star Trek (1966-1969)

Notable missings:
Futurama, Alias, Angel, Smallville, The Star Trek spinoffs [maybe they were included with Star Trek?... but, no, they only put 1966-1969, so they meant only the original series as #1 on their list. Weird.], Heroes, House [I'm not a fan of it, but I know it's got a huge cult following], V, Alien Nation, and Dead at 21. [Someone should revisit this idea. It really wasn't given a chance. I guess maybe NBC's upcoming Chuck might be sorta like it, but I'm skeptical of that show at this stage in the game.]

Questionable inclusions:
#30 - Strangers with Candy. What? I've never even heard of this show.
#29 - Absolutely Fabulous. Sucked beyond the telling of it.
#20 - The Avengers. Really? I never saw the original series, but the movievized version was horrible. (Of course, most movievized versions of tv shows past are.
#17 - Beauty and the Beast. Again, huh? I'd think that The Adventures of Lois and Clark would be more apt here. I mean, at least Dean Cain and Teri Hatcher both still have careers. Linda Hamilton and whoever the Beast was? Yeah. Nowhereseville.
#11 - Jericho. I keep hearing that it improved after midseason, but I gave up after the first 3 or 4 episodes. It was just too ...not good.

Anyway, when they do this list again next year, or whenever, I bet that Reaper will be on there. I've seen the pilot episode of it [and also Aliens in America and Life is Wild, which were...less impressive] and I can totally see this show catching on. It's very funny, and it has the supernatural twist to it, and it has enough plot potential to last for a while without getting stale. I even came up with one of my trademark way out theories! But, after giving it a little more thought, I've decided that it's most likely totally wrong. [Just like always! Yay!]
But, for the sake of prosperity, here's my theory. If it turns out that they use it, remember where you heard it first....

[begin spoiler for Reaper theory that is quite certainly way wrong CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR THE PILOT EPISODE OF REAPER! - highlight to view]
The Devil is actually God.

Why I thought this - 1) His comment, "I've seen how this ends. God wins."
2) He's having Sam do "good" work.
3) Sam's friend's comment about how you can't sell someone else's soul.
3a) The fact that Sam wants to continue to work for the Devil.
4) It would be an awesome twist, and something that I would appreciate.

Strikes against it
1) The Devil does watch as the guy gets killed by the Zamboni. [granted, the guy was a bad guy [so he said] and the god in the bible is a vengeful ass, but the vengeful ass thing is usually ignored by media portrayals of the Almighty God.]
2) The DMV worker.[see below]
3) Why would God pose as the Devil? That just doesn't make sense.
[/end spoilers]
Regardless, the show was still fun, and Tuesday nights at 9pm, we'll be watching.
Edited to add - Here were some of the best parts of the pilot ep of Reaper:

Highlight at your own risk!

1) The fact that the DMV is a portal into hell. Sure, the DMV is an easy target, but it explains so much!
2) "The winner gets a ham."
"I'm Jewish, you jerk!"
"..or a gift certificate."
3) "Sam tried college for a month, but it made him sleepy."
4) "It takes a charger."
5) The DMV worker having horns. Hee!
6) Their address is 667.
7) "How drunk are you?"
"Totally sober."
"How drunk am I?" [as with so many of Sock's lines, it's more his delivery than anything. Sock is awesome.]
8) "DMV!!" [another Sock line, and the messing up of the clerk's desk that goes along with it]
9) Eyebrows.
10) "I can be nice."

Friday, June 29, 2007

Endless Summer

God, this month has dragged. It has seriously felt like June forEVER.

And there's still another day to go!

I blame the 107 degrees that it is, even at 8:00 at night.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Open to interpretation

Pop culture is chock full of things that have ambiguous endings. I really enjoy when artists create such things, because it provides us nerds with something to argue about.

Examples follow (and I'll include my interpretation for each example, because it's the correct one)...

The ending of Angel:

Not Fade Away ends with, I guess I should spoiler tag this, just to be on the safe side:
Angel and his crew have spent season 5 working for the bad guys, trying to take them down from the inside.
In the final episode, they set forth into motion a plan that seriously weakened many of the higher-ups in the bad team's hierarchy. This pissed them off, so they sent an entire army after Angel, Ilyria, Spike, Gunn [badly wounded], and Wesley [who did not survive].
The show leads up to the final battle between an army of evil and the final 4 good guys.
Angel and his team know that the odds are against them, but they are determined to go down fighting. Angel says, "Let's go to work." and the show goes to black.
So - did they survive? Did the army wipe them out? Did the earth grow tired of it all and hurl itself into the sun? We don't know. That's for us to decide.

My interpretation: When I first watched it, I felt for sure that Angel and his crew died heroic deaths, but that Evil won in the end.
Years have gone by, and maybe it's because I know that there are plans for a continuation of the series via comic books, or maybe I've just grown more optimistic, but I now feel that they beat the odds and ended up surviving against the army. Yay!

Here's the Youtube video of the last 5 minutes of the show, along with the WB's "goodbye" that shows some of the clips from the previous years.

#2) The Sopranos

I've never actually seen an episode of this show, and that includes the controversial series finale which just aired, but I've read all about it.
Basically, the final scene is set in a diner, where Tony is with his family, and the tension is building as to whether the next people coming into the diner will "whack" him or not.
His wife is outside attempting to parallel park, and it goes to black - midscene.

My interpretation: Tony bit it. If the show is from Tony's POV - and I guess most of it was - then it makes sense that once he's dead, that it would go to black. Also, apparently, the line of "you never see it coming" was used several times, which leads credence to that idea.
I was trying to find the clip of it on youtube, but I can't seem to find an unedited version of it.

#3) "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam

Video that came out in the early 90s.

I almost didn't include this "debate", because it's so obvious that he shoots himself, but when it was first popular, I had a friend who believed with all of her heart that he shot his classmates.

#4) Han shot first.

#5) "That's where I'm a Viking!"

In the Simpsons episode "Lisa the Vegetarian" - a classic episode, from, like, 15 years ago - Ralph Wiggum is told by the teacher to go to sleep while the rest of the class tries to learn. He exclaims, "Oh, boy, sleep! That's where I'm a Viking!"
He then promptly falls asleep.
My interpretation - Ralph dreams of being a Viking each and everytime that he goes to sleep.
For years I thought that that was the only way to interpret that line. And then, a few weeks back, I saw that there was a different way to perceive it. That "viking" was a metaphor, and that Ralph was excited because he was going to be able to do something that he excelled at.
When I began reading that thread, I asked Steph, "The line 'Oh boy, sleep, that's where I'm a Viking!' means what?" and she instantly said, "That he's really good at sleeping."
And I was all, "WHAT!!!???!!!"
After having read all 467 comments in that thread, and talking to Steph (and Jupe) about this matter, I can see that way of thinking, but's still wrong.
(And, sadly, the link to the youtube video of that particular clip of the show has been removed.)

And now, it's later than I had expected it to be, so I'll just end it there. I didn't even get to lyrics and/or book interpretations. So I'll open up the comment section - what books/movies/tv shows/songs/whatever are ambiguous and unclear enough to warrant debate and discussion? And/or, what about the above 5? If I'm seeing things in a completely erroneous matter, please, show me the light.

ETA- a few more examples:

The Wizard of Oz - it was all just a dream....or was it? [see also, about a million other copies of this idea. *Normal Again* from BtVS, for instance]

American Psycho did a similar riff.

The ending of FlashForward by Robert J. Sawyer - highly recommended, btw - has one of the most awesome ambiguous endings ever. "I must be getting old."

Modest Mouse lyrics are ripe with double meanings.
I couldn't remember
I couldn't remember
If I tried

being one.

Long Live Ambiguity!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

So I says to Mabel I says

"What should I blog about?"

And she says, "........Harry Potter?"

So, we just got back from the book store, and the grocery store, and while at Borders, I saw a bunch of books that had my interest, so I'll be making stops at the library shoonish. ['shoon' being a combination of 'shortly' and 'soon', and meaning in an unknown amount of time, but not too far from now.]

While at the book store, though, I realized while in the children's section that everything for kids now is a Harry Potter clone. It's all "Jack-a-mo and the Fee Non Ay: Book 1 of 6" or "The China Chronicles" or "The Adventures of Whoozitdog". Which, you know, cool, but I wonder what the next big thing in children's lit will be, because right now, it seems all... the same.

Also Harry Potter related, but in a [grr!] type of way: Harry and the Potters were performing last night at the Sunrise Library, which is just down the street from our house. WOO!, we thought, That would be so awesome to go and see!, plus, the tickets were free, which is totally within our price range!

But, then, comes the grr! aspect.

The concert was for adults only.


That makes ZERO sense. I mean, hello? They're a band that sing songs based on books written for children!

Harry and the Potters are totally a thing that children should experience and would enjoy. Also the girls have been listening to the H&tPs CDs the past two days, and really liking them. Plus, some of their youtube videos displaying other performances of that band had youngish people in the crowd, so I don't know what is up the butts of the Sunrise Librarians, but the result was that we did not get to see the band. Boo, hiss. Maybe next time.

Oh, and the song "Dumbledore" gets added to the list. It's got good company - "The Day the Music Died", "Cats in the Cradle", "Still Fighting It",... "Vogue"

And lastly, it's nearly July! Which means movie 5, and book 7 are, like, days away now!

Friday, June 22, 2007

And the world is beautiful, just look around

Went to the libe during my lunch break because if I didn't get out of the office, I was going to have a complete and utter nervous breakdown. Hey, maybe I did anyway! [insert crazy laugh]

ANyway, I faced the quadruple digit temps and picked up a bunch of comic book/graphic novels/books with pictures and 3 cds by Harry and the Potters, because I'm lowbrow, and easy to please. Also, my attention span is just not up to reading full length novels anymore. Or writing them, either, apparently! [insert crazy laugh]


Today was a ...not good day at work. I'm trying to let it go, though, so maybe I shouldn't blog about it. On the other hand, perhaps getting it out will allow me to stop thinking about it. Let's compromise, shall we?

I'll blog about it in a moment, if I still feel I have to. First, other things:

We (well, Saren and I - Steph & Harper were smart enough to stop at various midpoints) watched Napoleon Dynamite last night.

HOLY FUCK that was the absolute worst piece of garbage I have seen in a LONG time. What the fuck is wrong with people that that movie has been so hyped? It was the opposite of funny. It was the epitome of UNfunny. I sat there, for an hour and 36 minutes, thinking, "It's got to get better." "It's going to get better, right?" "Maybe it'll get better."
It doesn't.

In fact, I realized something last night, anytime I've watched something thinking, "Maybe it gets better" doesn't. Season 7 of Buffy didn't. Napoleon Dynamite didn't. I'm sure there are other examples, but I can't remember any right now. But the "maybe it'll get better" line is a fool's trap.

At some point, I realized that ND was NOT going to get better. I don't know when that was, but instead of turning it off, or finding something better to do, I opted to stick it out to see just how bad it could be.

But after watching it, and after thinking back to all the hype that surrounded it, I had two thoughts:
1) The hype must be an elaborate prank. It's some sort of complex meta-joke, in which people know that it's an awful unfunny complete waste of time, but they say that it's great in order to see if anyone else will really buy into it. Those who do, are just as ...challenged mentally, shall we say? as Napoleon is himself.
2) Maybe I just don't get it.

Anyway, if it were possible to rate negative stars on Netflix, this would certainly deserve them.

Hmm. Urge to post about work is fading, but still somewhat here.

I'll suffice to say that work sucks. People expect me to be a mind-reader, and also don't take into consideration a) how much work I already do and b) that piling on more work on top of that won't be a problem.
Also, I'm vastly vastly underpaid.

On the bright side - I'm taking July 2nd and 3rd off, and the 4th is a holiday, so there's a five day break coming up at the end of next week. Cool.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

s.o.c. it to me


How the hell did SkyNet come up with the idea of time travel to begin with? The computer system was designed to monitor defense systems, it became self-aware, and when humans decided to shut it down, that's when it opted to kill us. So ...when did it develop time travel? I mean, if there truly were a nuclear war, wouldn't most of the materials have been destroyed to begin with?

Dear Area 108,
1) It's Area One-oh-eight. Not one-oh-seven-nine. I refuse to accept this change. Refuse!!
2) I do not like (green eggs and ham) Icky Thump by the White STripes. It is not a good song, and will not become a good song no matter how many times you play it during a day. (eg, 832)

Dude. Gremlins 3 would so rock, if done conrrecltly.

Oh, yeah, I'm UTP@, in case that was not of the evident ...material?

Um. Wow. I just keep on blanking. It's ...sorta scary, honestly. But. Oh, you know, at least, something.

Um. Oh! You know what wiuld suck? If you died, and went to heaven, and when you got to the gates, there were three celebrity judges.

Actually, not only Gremlins 3, but I'd like to see Grease 3, Bill & Ted 3, and, that's all. Are there any other movies that stopped at 2? Everything goes to 3 now. Or gets redone. And then goes to 3. Or 5. Or 11.

Oooh! Pizza! I'm starving like a marvin.
Tommorow is Summer. Pizza time!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Half a minute birthday

I am such a dork!

Anyway. 32's good so far.

1) No Zombies. (Which was a lot of fun participating in. The site responsible is already planning a sequel. It's still being worked out whether the next apocalypse will be another zombie infusion or something more (or less) sinister. Personally, I'd love to see a world-wide version of Wolf go down. [ the blogosphere. Real life werewolf attacks - not so much.])

2) Awesome gifts from my family and coworkers and cards from the same, as well as from some internet weirdos.
Here's the breakdown:
A 24 pack of Pepsi (hee!)
20 dollar gift card to Best Buy
20 dollar gift card to Del Taco
Pursuit of Happyness on DVD
Gremlins on DVD
The Goonies on DVD
Willow on DVD
2 bags of Beef Jerky
1 handmade book about cats from Harper
6 birthday cards total (3 from family, 2 from internet weirdos, 1 from work)
2000 extra points on the Wii Virtual channel - I haven't downloaded anything extra from there yet, though.

3) Um. I guess there isn't a 3. Oh, except that tomorrow is Friday. And payday. So, that's of the good.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Everyone should probably first read this.

Man. I am self-absorbed. It is, for all intents and purposes, really the end of civilization going on, and I decide to post on my blog.

People are dying - seriously really freaking dying and god, Las Vegas - hell probably the world, if reports can be believed - has turned into a motherfucking warzone, and I decide to make a new blog entry. Hell, it's doubtful that anyone will survive long enough to read this, and even if they do, it's unclear how much longer the grid will maintain I suppose I should hurry my shouting to the void.

God. I'm shaking. It's been a weird ass day. Oddly, typing the story is calming me down some. Helping me bring some order to the impossibilities of the horrors I witnessed today. So maybe there is a reason for me to blog about this - it will preserve my sanity.

I'll start at the beginning.

Next door to the station is a VA hospital. Lots of elderly veterans are around all the time. Every so often, there's an ambulance that comes in. Or, on very rare occasions, one that leaves. In the 12 years that i've worked at the station, there have been 4 deaths there that I am aware of. Well, before today, anyway.

The day had been normal enough up until lunch time.
Around 12pm, we heard sirens as an ambulance arrived at the VA clinic. Those of us in the lunch room at the time - myself, Claire, Ann, Todd and Regina - looked out the windows to get a better view of what was happening. We could see the employees gathered in a small crowd near a man who was lying on the ground. The man appeared very old, and pretty frail. A walker - his, presumably - was nearby. One of the employees moved it out of the way as the paramedics arrived in the ambulance and readied the stretcher.

We watched with morbid fascination as they picked his body up and put him on the stretcher and began to put him into the back of the vehicle. We wondered aloud whether he was actually dead, or if he had simply collapsed, or what was going on.
As they began to load him into the ambulance, we figured our lunchtime excitement for the day was over, and began to refocus on eating, and talking, and watching the news. Todd made several off-color comments and "jokes" about the guy, and about getting older, and that was when we heard the scream. Apparently, although we didn't see it happen, we all quickly looked at the VA's parking lot, and saw that the elderly guy had attacked one of the paramedics.
"Whoa!" was my initial reaction.
"Guess the guy wasn't dead," said Todd.
"I bet he's on drugs," Regina opined. I found the idea of a senior citizen being on the type of drugs that she was implying rather dubious, but was too immersed in watching the scene to really say anything. And the man's actions sorta lent some credibility to that idea.

The paramedic who had not been bitten was pushing the older man down, attempting to control him, as the man himself railed violently against him. Fortunately for the doc, the man was easy to contain, since he was so frail to begin with. Holding him down with one arm, he used his free hand to radio in the situation. Several of the VA employees aided him in strapping the man to the stretcher, although they had extremely worried looks on their faces. I at first thought it was due to the violent outburst, but they were probably more shocked than we were because they knew the man shouldn't've been moving to begin with.

As for the paramedic who had been bit, his arm was bleeding pretty heavily. The man who had attacked him had taken a good sized chunk of flesh, apparently. He stumbled to the back of the ambulance and began self-administering first aid to his wound.

The lunch room was buzzing at that point:
"Holy crap, look at all that blood."
"Man, is he okay?"
"That's crazy!"
Etc etc etc.

You know, I'm not sure where I fall in the whole ESP debate, but it was at that moment that I had a sinking sensation in my stomach. Perhaps it was a reaction to seeing the blood and the old man - whom I had gotten a good look at, and trust me, wish I hadn't - or the look on the faces of the employees who knew that the man was previously dead or the sounds of the sirens that I heard in the distance indicating trouble elsewhere in the city or maybe it was a kind of precognitive flash that the world had forever changed somehow. Either way, at that moment, I had to sit down.

Channel 3's news was on the tv as usual, and they interrupted the weather ("Hot. Reapeat ad infinitum.") with their "BREAKING NEWS" font and music and the knot in my stomach grew tighter.
Mitch Truswell looked grave (ha ha, gallows humor pun there) when he appeared on the screen. "We have some breaking news to report just now. There are... several reports of mass disturbances..." not having a script to go off, and obviously not wanting to sound ridiculous about what he was reporting was leaving him slightly flustered. He went on, however, "...throughout the valley, police are being inundated with phone calls from all over regarding ...gangs of people commiting random acts of violence. The most reported areas right now are all, ...all appear to be near local hospitals and cem.."
There was a loud crash off camera, and a bunch of shouting of people. Mitch looked up toward the commotion and did the first nonprofessional - and last, for that matter - thing I've ever seen him do. He yelled, "Hey! Get the hell out of here before..."
A lot more crashing and yelling before the director of the news had them switch to the "Techinal Difficulties" slate with accompanying - and eventually annoying - Channel 3 music.

At this point, we had turned our attention back to the television. I mean, how often is there 1) Breaking News 2) a scuffle on-air!!
But when they didn't come back to the news - or take down the Technical Difficulties slate - after about 30 seconds...and then a minute...

I reverted to denial stage. "This has been a weird day," I understated.

More sirens.

We switched the tv over to CNN.
If you're reading this, no doubt you've seen the footage... I can't talk about it right now. It's ...too unreal. But I do remember gagging when I first saw what they were reporting...

Channel 3 is located right across the street from the Woodlawn Cemetery (really! 1500 Foremaster Lane if you want to google it yourself), so it was really just bad luck that they got hit first. As Mitch had started to say, and as we deduced later, hospitals and cemeteries were the first hit. The "hot zones" as they were first referred to, and "dead zones" as the term evolved. There are 3 cemeteries in Las Vegas. I don't know how many hospitals. They're all deserted by this point, no doubt. I mean, there is very little doubt in my mind that all the Las Vegas hospitals are most likely dead zones now. And I certainly don't envy anyone who happens to still be alive and trapped in one. Ugh. What a horrible thought.

So. We stayed watching CNN for a while. The reports were still pretty sketchy at that point, but it was obvious that whatever the hell was going on, it was worldwide. From what they were reporting, people had started randomly attacking others. Hospitals and cemeteries were the 'hot zones', where most of the attacks were beginning, but from there, the violence seemed to be spreading. Police forces were being dispatched to control crowds and martial law had been declared in many US cities. There had been no word yet from Bush.
As a political aside here, while the undead uprising that has happened over the past five hours or so has been really horrible, and I wouldn't wish that fate upon anyone, I sincerely hope that Bush and all politicians do get munched. The last thing we need is someone with 'nuke-you-lar' capabilities to get the brain-dead (heh, more puns) idea that there is only one solution.... Hell, I heard rumors that a (small, obviously) nuke was detonated somewhere in India. Again, God. What a horrible thought.

It was being reported on CNN that staying indoors was the best course of action, and to leave everything to the authorities. [sigh]

I excused myself from the breakroom, saying that I didn't feel well - which was true - but mostly, I didn't want people to hear my phone call to Steph. I called her to make sure that she was okay, and that the girls were as well. She said that they were, but that she wanted me to come home now. I agreed, and told her I would be home as soon as I could. "Be safe, and I love you, Pat. I love you so much."
"I know. I love you too." I was fighting back tears at this point. It felt way too much like this could seriously be the last time we spoke.
"I'll see you in half an hour."

I shut down my computer - I avoided going online and checking the news sites. I knew that would not be productive - and put my phone on do not disturb, then walked out. Heh. Of all the times I've dreamt about walking off the job, I never figured it would take the end of the world before I would have the guts to do it.

I wondered how long everyone else would stay. I mean, when the world is dissolving around you, how long do you attempt to maintain the illusion? Seriously - it could be your last moments on earth, and you're going to spend them trying to make money for a company that doesn't care about you? God, maybe we deserve this fate.

But there are some people at work I geniunely consider friends, so as I was pulling out of the parking lot, I phoned Dean, and said, "Hey, Dean."
"Hey. What's going on, Pat?"
"I'm leaving. And... you probably should too. Or at least ...have you called Darla, yet?"
Dean could tell something was wrong by my tone, but he had obviously not seen any of the news footage yet. (How sad is that? Of course, since we are technically a non-news having station, it's not out of the realm of possibility. Often we are the last to know anything. I mean, what if we hadn't been watching Channel 3 at that time??)
"What's going on, Pat?" Dean repeated.

"" As I was sitting at the exit of the parking lot, waiting to turn onto Jones, I saw that the paramedics from the VA hadn't left yet. In fact, the one who had been bitten seemed to have gone...well, rabid, maybe? And he was attacking - or trying to - attack anyone who had been nearby. He was being given a wide berth, and he was making his way toward the station.
I've seen plenty of zombie movies, of course. So in my mind, it played out that he would make his way to the building, and begin to kill everyone there.
But, in reality, there was no way he would be able to get inside. He wouldn't have a door code, and it was highly unlikely that the receptionist would buzz in someone who was bleeding profusely and... Channel 3 had door codes, too, though.

WHat to do? I realized that Dean was still on the phone. I said quickly, "Dean. There's some bad shit going down outside. Check out CNN. It's serious. And... there's someone outside the station right now, and I'm going home. I'll try to call you later. Good luck."
"What are -" but I hung up before Dean could get any more answers out of me.

I may have condemned everyone working there, but I didn't care. Or don't. I guess. I wasn't thinking. I was scared and wanted to be home.

The traffic cleared up enough for me to pull out of the parking lot. I began the drive home.

God. Right now, one of them is stumbling through our yard. Thank god they aren't bright. They're like freaking automatons, set to "eat". Anything that is living flesh - they go after it. Fortunately, they don't have super strong senses of hearing or smell, so as long as we remain quiet, we should be safe in here. For a while, anyway.

Ugh. It's making me nervous. Go away, abomination. Just go away. I really don't want it to attract other zombies (they do seem to have some sort of way of communicating - with each other at least) or, maybe worse, for it to attract someone wanting to kill it. Like the authorities. Or someone who thinks they're an authority.

There are reports of - and I saw an instance of it on my way home - these ...vigilantes, I guess is the word I'm looking for, but that seems weird since they're not hunting down criminals per se. I mean, unless the undead are guilty of breaking the laws of nature. Which they are. (I'm getting loopy. Apologies.)

Anyway. There are roaming gangs of zombie-killers out there. They seem to be armed, and generally travelling in big trucks and SUVs. Or at least, here that's the flavor they're coming in. No doubt there are similar groups in other places, that have developed their own particular styles. [sigh] Humans.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Back to the narrative.

As I drove down Jones toward Desert Inn, I saw indications of trouble elsewhere throughout the city. Sirens were sounding pretty much nonstop, at differing decibels, depending on how far away they were. There was smoke visible several miles away. Impossible to tell exactly how far from where I was. And I heard the first pop of gunfire. Not the last, sadly. And even sadder - in the past few hours, I've grown used to it and pretty much tuned it out.

But the biggest sign that things were hitting the fan was the radio. Area 108 was playing U2's "One", which I thought might've been a sign of gallows humor, but after listening to it for a while longer, I realized had simply been pre-programmed. Because after the next song, there was a commercial break, and after that, there was nothing on that station.
I scanned the dial a bit more, and found a lot of the stations were off the air, or were pre-programmed, or just playing music like it was business as usual. There was a Spanish station that came in, and had a person talking. I listened for a bit, not knowing what the person was saying, but I certainly heard the word muerta a lot.
106.5 had a CNN feed piped into it, which was more or less the equivalant of the SPanish DJ - fascinating to listen to, but not really relevant. It was there that I heard that the zombie uprising had hit, among other places, Pittsburgh, LA, New Jersey, and even Sweden.
Finally, I found a live person on an AM station. This was much more informational for me. I discovered that the Strip had been shut down - which meant that going home would have been impossible if I had not gone through Desert Inn. Unfortunately, Desert Inn was much more crowded as a result...

The guy on the AM station also informed me about the other tv stations. Channel 3, according to this guy, was, as I had figured, shut down. Nobody was answering the phones there, and they had had their "Technical Difficulties" slate up for going on half an hour at that point.
Channel 13 had switched over to a CNN feed, and Fox 5 was carrying the national Fox News feed. Channel 8 was running the national CBS feed as well. Our stations were running normal programming, so they said, which meant that our master control guys were still there. Huh.
I thought about calling the control room, when I saw a throng of zombies at the intersection of DI and Decatur. They were stumbling in the direction of my car, but I wasn't really worried. There was a lot of room between us, as well as a lot of other cars. And people. There were a bunch of pedestrians who saw the zombies approaching. This, of course, caused them to panic. Which meant that they ran. Into the street, generally.
Which caused vehicles to swerve. Or not. Someone got hit, and went flying. Two of the zombies turned their attention toward the accident victim. The rest of the horde continued to advance.
My light changed, and even though the intersection was blocked by flocks of people and zombies and hit and run victims and vehicles, i somehow managed to get through it all.

As I drove over the freeways, I looked down and saw that 95 Northbound was ...empty. That was unusual. Southbound was jampacked, of course, as people attempted to flee. But why was the other direction shut down? It was then that I saw the military tanks barricading the freeway. They were beginning to lock down the city. Soon they'd shut down the other direction, as well as all the other major arteries into and out of the city. Or at least, they would try.

The rest of the drive home was slow going, as the road became more and more congested. My phone rang three times - each time it was from work - and I ignored it.

Around Eastern & DI was when I saw the vigilantes that I mentioned earlier. A huge white pickup truck packed with men carrying pistols and shotguns was speeding up and down Eastern Avenue, and they were shooting at anyone that was simply walking. (The logic, apparently, being that living humans would duck and cover, or not be on the road to begin with.) I witnessed them take out four different zombies (I hope) in the few minutes that I was within their sight. [I just found myself thankful that they were ignoring people driving. Seemed to be encouraging us to pass through, actually. Honorable hoodlums, I guess.]

Anyway. I got home around 3:45 - even though I had left at 12:30 - which has to be a record for longest commute time ever.

I unlocked the front door and came inside. I exchanged hugs with the family, and we started making plans on where to go from here.

The original plan was to drive up to Utah, and hide out in the spare house up there. But with the freeways shut down, that won't be possible. Instead, I'm going to finsh blogging this, and then we're going to drive down the street to the Wal-Mart. I don't know what we'll do, honestly.

But, hey, at least we have blogs still. So, if anyone out there managed to survive the uprising, and is still reading this, feel free to let me know you're alive and well. Keep fighting, friends. And stay safe.

Friday, June 08, 2007

In the beginning

This site lists the first line of random books. Attached are links to, in case you want to know what book it is they're quoting.

There are some great first lines there, along with a number of meh ones. It's interesting (and a little disturbing) how many first lines are about murder, though.

An opening sentence of my own creation that I'm quite fond of:

First, all the birds died.

(And, see, I guess I'm guilty of the "death at front" trick as well...)

So, first lines that have stuck with you? Please share.
And, in P@ypical fashion, I have to ask - what about last lines?

Thursday, June 07, 2007

blogging in 60 seconds

We're getting ready to leave, so I've given myself 60 seconds to get as much blogging done as possible.

Here we go!
The Shield is a great show, but it also puts me on edge everytime I watch it. Why is that? And why do I love it so? And what other sshows are out there like it? (i'm up to season 3 so far, btw)

Y or C? C makes more sense, but Y is

Monday, June 04, 2007

Monday grin

As I battle a "not enough sleep" headache, I will provide some youtubes that will hopefully provide a grin or two.

First, a Pearl Jam video with a unique interpretation of the mumblings of Eddie Vedder...

Now, on a related note (heh), here's a song composed entirely of random words. Sour kraut brainwash!!

Friday, June 01, 2007

cash in now honey

I've sat here for the past half hour/45 minutes trying to think of what to blog about. I've started an entry a couple of times now, and deleted the text part way through. (Will this be the one that survives all the way to publishing? Only people in the future know for sure!)

The point is - my heart is just not in it right now. For writing of any kind, basically. I did start on a screenplay today. 84 words. And they're cliche and trite and completely uninteresting to me. (And at this point, I'm the one that matters)
And while it's true that 84 words is 84 more than I had before today, ... um. I don't know.

I do know this. Sometime this month, I'm going to take a step toward getting that ...other project going. [/purposely vague because that's what I do] I've been sitting on that idea for ...a year? A year and a half? Jeez. Too long, whatever the case. Anyway. I'm ready to stop just thinking about it. Hopefully when inspirations knocks again, I'll actually answer the door this time.

On a completely unrelated note, one of the episodes of The Shield that we are airing this weekend is #3-11, "Strays", in which, at the very end of the episode, Detective Dutch Wagenbach [begin spoiler for Strays - highlight to view] strangles a cat to death.[/end spoiler]

Nothing unique in this observation, but it struck me again how absurd it is that we can't allow women (or men) wearing thong underwear to be shown on the air, but the above action is perfectly acceptable.