Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Re-Broadcasting Major League Baseball With Implied Oral Consent

Clearly safe
Exhibit #2 for why I find it difficult and useless to get emotionally invested in Major League Baseball:  MLB Umpires (or in this case Jerry Meals).  I have many other examples that I would rather not relive at the moment, but this was pretty stupid (because no one EVER calls it because it isn't the rule), and most umpires are huge controlling douchebags.  Kind of ironic I am a Royals fan and they won the 1985 World Series on a bad umpiring call.... except that the Cardinals still had the chance to win game 6 in the 9th and, oh I don't know, score a run in game 7.  But other interpretations are fine.  My #1 reason to not become emotionally invested in the MLB: the financial situation, but that's business stuff and no one cares (because it's cool for the Yankees to outspend half the league by $100 million).

(Pic via)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

She's Single, Likes Sports, and Hates Careless People, and Can Be Yours If the Price Is Right!

Today's character:  Jordan Baker

Luhrmann's Jordan:  Elizabeth Debicki
Past Ms. Baker's:  Ruth Hussey, Lois Chiles, Francie Swift

I don’t like Jordan Baker.  By the end of the book her character has annoyed me to such an extent Fitzgerald should have put her in the pool with Gatsby.  Please, do not get me wrong.  The awkward ‘new’ love affair she has with Nick contrasts beautifully with the awkward ‘old’ love affair going on between Daisy and Gatsby (along with other Old World vs. New World metaphors, regional differences, etc.), and her life motto of “it takes two to make an accident...I hate careless people (that’s why she likes Nick)” line suits her lifestyle and choices well.  She plays golf but cheats, she is dangerous (read: reckless) but she has the figure of a ‘sportswoman’ (thus beautiful and fit), she ain’t care what anyone thinks but she is too inviting and social to be considered unfeeling.  She comes across as too good for you (and she might be) but she isn’t too good to get her jollies in the process of dragging your heart around.  Very dynamic and necessary to drive the plot and provide Daisy/Gatsby background, but again, by the end of the book she has run her course.  When she and Nick talk about their relationship and what happened after Gatsby dies, she blows Nick off with ‘I’m engaged,’ and then dismisses him with the whole ‘I was wrong about you’ and “I thought you were rather an honest, straightforward person.”  WHAT. A. BITCH.  I always wondered if Fitzgerald was trying to blow off steam from some unfortunate event in his past with this exchange because Nick’s response of “I’m thirty...I’m five years too old to lie to myself and call it honor” is a solid, assholish comeback.  It leaves her speechless, and that’s what makes it so good.  Of course, readers are supposed to get a disgusted, visceral reaction by how Jordan, Tom, and Daisy turned out by the end of the novel.  The only difference is Tom and Daisy are sucky people and Jordan is just being cold to be cold because she can move on and no one will call her on it.  Nick didn’t do anything wrong.  FREE NICK!!!

Anyway, someone named Elizabeth Debicki or something is playing Jordan in the new film.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Mr. Nobody From Nowhere Is Making Love To Your Wife

Sexy, kinda...

Today's character:  Tom Buchanan

Luhrmann's Buchanan: Joel Edgerton
Past Toms:  Barry Sullivan, Bruce Dern, Martin Donovan

Okay, so begins my xenophobic, flag waving rant on Australian characters playing pure bred, corn fed Amerrrrricans.  It’s...not...that....big of....a deal (*shudders).  But really, my biggest issue with Edgerton as Tom is that I believe Bradley Cooper would have been a damn good Tom.  Dammit!  But, if Luhrmann feels better directing actors that he knows more about, then so be it.

Tom, described by some American actor as “the best character in the book. He’s so complicated...He’s xenophobic, he’s an alcoholic, but he also understands some profound stuff about class.”  Tom is an every-man.  He’s a young, rich Archie Bunker.  He’s everyone’s racist, beer drinkin' grandfather or father.  He says what he thinks no matter how anyone feels, and he gets what he wants by either being an asshole or a passive-aggressive douche.  He drinks, he cheats on his wife, but he also knows that all of it is fun and games.  And he never really learns anything.

That unnamed American actor also provides a warning to those playing Tom; “Whoever plays it has to take a gentle hand, because it could so easily be stock, where he’s a rich jerk you don’t identify with at all.”  So very very true.  Let’s loooook at how Edgerton stacks up.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Tales From Middle-Earth: The Sprint Center Just Wants To Be Loved

...and with just twenty cents per day, you can provide it with shoes and clean water.

Ah, the Sprint Center.  For those of you not familiar with the cereal bowl of dreams, allow me to enlighten you:  In the mid-2000s, some people more or less decided that Kemper Arena in Kansas City, Missouri was not doing all it could to attract a third (or fourth!) major professional sports team to Kansas City (what with all of the professional wrestling deaths and failing surrounding infrastructure).  So, a new arena (the Sprint Center) was imagined, designed, and built with help from the dream makers at AEG Imagineering with the intention of attracting large events to town and a NBA or NHL franchise. Since its opening in 2006, the building has hosted a multitude of events and is one of the most popular arenas in the United States. still remains that the NHL and NBA do not have teams here, as promised (or assumed, or said in passing-- I'm not a lawyer).  With the recent lockout of the NBA and the relocation of the NHL's Atlanta franchise to much smaller but hockey crazed/starved Winnipeg, Manitoba, the Sprint Center and Kansas City have come up in the almost bi- to tri-annual "Why is the Sprint Center and Kansas City so worthless?" discussions.  But really, it's not so worthless, and Kansas City is not as much of a shithole as some power line licking, nomadic, lonely, previously unemployed 'sports' writers would have you believe.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Those Jerks, Always Walking Over the Small Businessman

Look, I am not going to pretend like I know anything about the Casey Anthony trial because my only knowledge comes from hearing Nancy Grace put on her whole "LEMME JUSSAY" and "JUSTICE....for little Caylee...killed....and" routine while passing relatives in the living room on my way to the kitchen.  As a heterosexual male with some sort of (any) life outside my house, I had absolutely no interest in the trial and questioned the morals of those that did, because, you see, I am an American, dammit.

What I do know is the only reason the Anthony trial was not as popular as the O.J. Simpson trial was because a car chase did not precede it.  Car chases are awesome, like this one, or this one, or these, ewww, even this one!!!  Oh man, how I do love a good car/tank chase.  (Sidenote: Worlds Wildest Police Chases, what a good ass show.)

But, that is not my point.  My point comes from what we see as a result of the trial.  It, uh, kind of brought out the worse in people and junk.

Go ahead and jump if you really care