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Journal Archives from May 2006
incident at loch ness

Tonight we watched Incident at Loch Ness, which was a movie I had vaguely heard of in passing, but never knew much about. Helen knew more than me, and knew it would be awesome, and was totally right. I can just recommend that everyone check it out, without wanting to get into a bunch of specifics except it's like This is Spinal Tap but with Werner Herzog.

Two very small and largely insignificant parts of the film, which are two things that brought me such great delight in the viewing, took place during the dinner party at the beginning. Near the completion of the party, and with no further screen time or exposition, you see that Crispen Glover is in attendance. Little more needs to be said about this, except that I need to go see the Herzog movies that I believe Crispen was in. Be sure to check out the character descriptions for the role names in his 2005 directoral debut, which I still need to see.

The other specatular thing is a large genial man who does an excellent slight-of-hand card trick at the dinner. I was idly reading the credits for the 'dinner guests' at the end of the film, and saw to my great surprise Ricky Jay listed. It all made such perfect and insane sense then! Ricky Jay is perhaps little known save in certain circles, and I don't remember how I originally learned of him, but he is perhaps the greatest card-technician ever to have lived in our recorded history. He can throw a card through a watermellon, and holds a world record for throwing a card 190 ft. at 90 mph, not to mention his legendary sleight of hand card tricks He also has written a book titled "Cards as Weapons" which is extremely expensive and extremely out of print. I happen to have a copy of this book that I really need to return to a friend who loaned it to me and with whom I'm now out of touch. I was astounded, in reading the rare book, to open to a page of Ricky and Carl Sagan throwing cards onto the top of the state theatre building in downtown Ithaca. The mind reels. From reading the earlier-linked-to wikipedia entry, it seems that he has been getting some fairly high-profile roles lately, at least in Deadwood, which I admit I have yet to see. He also has a website, that I will be exploring at the same time as you, faithful reader.

That these three people were sharing toxic yerba root at Herzog's house, is just very nearly too cool for contemplation. Oh yeah, Jeff Goldblum was there too.

UPDATE: I was just reading the lengthy bio on Ricky Jay's website, and apparently he tended bar and did magic at the Royal Palms in Ithaca for a summer job once. Holy Crap. I feel like I need to drink there now this summer while the students are absent.
Posted by charlie on May 24th 2006
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Today a friend of mine asked me if he were to have a video with many many explosions, demon cheerleaders, and hard rock, would I be interested? Well absolutely! Today, then, I was fortunate to be introduced to Lordi, and their awesome video. I think the best way I can describe them is KISS meets Gwar; I'm sure I must not be the first to suggest that. From an interview I found with Mr. Lordi he sounds like an interesting Fin as well.

An excellent piece of very current trivia about this group, is that this May 22nd Lordi won the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest! This is something of a scandal, or at least a surprise, as the contest usually goes to a boy band or equivalent. What a fantastic change!
Posted by charlie on May 23rd 2006
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Indian Wedding

This weekend past I got to experience the most lavish and extravagant wedding that I've ever been asked to attend. It was a festival of food, music and decoration, nearly 8 hours long with an after party. The wedding itself was a fascinating blend of Hindu and Jewish customs, and featured two distinct services, one each in the fashion of those religions. The food also followed a similar format, much to my overwhelming delight! There was a live band, which was a great deal of fun, and whenever they took a break, a mix CD of awesome Indian dance music would seamlessly take over the audio duties.

I was delighted to discover that I was not alone in my fervent wish, and subsequent disappointment, that Daler Mehndi and his get-stuck-in-your-head (and of course perfect video!) should have been included in the fun. In deference to those organizing such a perfect event, I'll just assume it was in the mix and just didn't make it on the air that evening. Here then, is the video for Tunak Tunak Tun - enjoy!
Posted by charlie on May 7th 2006
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I have carefully avoided talking about politics on this site, as it only serves to make me angry and the whole point here is that we're enjoying the games and toys of yesterday and today. Well, suffice to say I consider myself to be a sane and rational human, and as such have certain political leanings in step with that lifestyle.

As such, one of the greatest things that I've seen or heard of recently is Mr. Stephen Colbert, at the White House Correspondents Dinner, where he was amazingly selected to be the key note speaker. He delivered what was really an astounding speech, directly to the president of this country, and he was cool as ice, solid as a rock, insert your favorite unflappable analogy here...they are all correct. That way he was able to carry himself, with the affected simpering grin, and self-assured tone and front of the very people he usually exposes from the safety of a studio set; it was all perfect. If you haven't seen the videos yet, go fight over some bandwidth. There are links to the video from this link which is itself pretty cool as it's a 'thank you' page to Colbert, using one of these 'social networking' thingies for free hosting - nice work. I believe that I'm response #30940. Go watch the video, and if you are so inclined, leave a note. I suspect this small event may well be talked about for some time to come.
Posted by charlie on May 2nd 2006
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