Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Ginger Envelope

My friend and fellow Hek-Atomic Cherry Steve is a busy man in the Athens, GA music scene. One of his current gigs is the bass player for the alt country band The Ginger Envelope. They are busy recording a full length record, but have taken time to release a video for the song "Dirty Penny" on YouTube.

If you like what you hear, make sure to check out their MySpace page where you can hear two great songs they recorded back in 2004.

You might also like one of Steve's other gigs, Venice Is Sinking. They are a little more indie rock than The Ginger Envelope but still make beautiful music. If you like what you hear on their MySpace page, you can get their debut album, "Sorry About the Flowers," from iTunes.


Some Hints At Season 3 Of "Lost"

At the annual Comic-Con convention in San Diego last weekend, several of the producers and stars of "Lost" held a question and answer session in which they revealed some upcoming developments for the next season of the show. They are just a few hints at what we can expect in October but I, for one, am all for getting a little official information from the producers just to tide me over for another two and a half months!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Roxi's Birthday

Roxi's birthday was Friday but we didn't let that stop us from celebrating for the entire weekend. Check out Grope For Luna to read about the party and see pictures of the amazing waterslide we rented!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Do you want more tax relief on your phone bill?

It seems like there sure are a lot of taxes these days. Not just the annual income tax and sales taxes we pay on a daily basis. I'm talking about the other taxes that get thrown in to just about everything else you do or use every day. One of those things is cell phone service. At the end of May, we got a little relief when the 3% Federal Excise Tax (the Spanish-American War Tax) was repealed. Now we have another great opportunity to chip away at other unfair taxes being levied to use our phones. The Senate is currently debating a bill that could suspend new taxes on wireless telephone services for three years. I know, I wish it would abolish said taxes, but unfortunately this is a marathon not a sprint. This is a step in the right direction. summarizes the situation as such:

With your support of the Senate communications bill, one consistent national policy for wireless services can become a reality. Right now, each of the 50 states can govern wireless 50 different ways. Since wireless doesn't recognize state borders, the hundreds of state taxes, laws and regulations in states and cities across the country are creating a confusing tangle for consumers. The result is less innovation, fewer choices among services and providers, and higher prices.

Along with the threat of unnecessary and inconsistent state by state rules, is the reality that consumers face unfair and excessive state and local taxes and fees on their wireless services. In fact, some states impose wireless taxes at double the rate of other goods and services. The Senate communications bill will put a 3-year freeze on new, discriminatory state and local wireless taxes.

They also provide easy to use links to contact your Senators. We do have the power. We succeeded in repealing the Federal Excise Tax and we too can succeed in freezing new taxes on wireless. Please write to your Senators and tell them you've had enough of exorbitant and inconsistent wireless phone taxes!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Free and Clear!

I officially own my car! I just made my last payment and now the title will finally be transferred into my name. It has been a long five years but this is very exciting for me since this is my first new car although it's not quite as new as it was in 2001 (thankfully that was eventually fixed). Here's to many more years with my wonderful Accord!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

So that was why he quit

I watched the second "lost" episode of Chappelle's show on Sunday night and now I see why Dave quit the show: it sucked. It's too bad this is how Chappelle's Show will be remembered because it really was funny when it started. Oh well.

Friday, July 14, 2006

A little of The Office for the summer

It's the summer but that isn't stopping my favorite TV comedy, The Office. Over the course of the next few months, a weekly "webisode" will be released on NBC's website telling the story of the Dunder Mifflin accountants as they try to track down $3000 dollars that has gone missing. Roxi and I watched the first two webisodes and although we'd rather be seeing a full thirty-minute episode, this is a pretty ingenious way to keep me interested over the summer break.

If that wasn't enough, rumor has it that next season, the British and American versions of The Office will collide. No word yet on weather the British actors will be playing their Office characters, but that is of no importance to me. It will be really fun to see the actors that defined The Office interact with the actors that I have come to love filling their shoes here in the US.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Hollywood Sucks

Ten years ago, Kevin Smith was approached to write the next Superman movie. Of course that project fell apart many times until it was resurrected last year and released a few weeks ago, but I think that the story that Smith tells of the whole process gives incredible insight into just how much Hollywood sucks. This really makes me not want to see any big budget movies ever again.

WARNING: Kevin Smith is no stranger to the f-bomb and other colorful language. Try to look past that to see just how vapid Hollywood producers can be.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Another Sad Day For Personal Responsibility

Today the US House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a bill that would essentially make it illegal to gamble online even through off-shore bookies. I for one am not a fan of gambling and think that there are better ways to spend my money, but some people do enjoy it and don't live near casinos. Why shouldn't they be able to spend their money the way they like? Some supporters of the bill claim they are trying to protect those who fall victim to gambling addiction but that is a pretty lazy argument. It's just another in a long line of "not my fault" legislation. To quote a supporter from the article: "They make it too easy to be frivolous with your money." Think about that quote for a second. Some people can't manage to not waste their own money, so the government has to pass a law preventing EVERYONE from accessing online gambling sites. Take some damn responsibility!!!!. Thankfully this isn't actually law yet, but if the Senate agrees with the House, it won't be long. Like we need any more stupid laws.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

The Last of Chappelle's Show

Tonight marked the beginning of the end of Chappelle's Show. More than a year after Dave Chappelle abruptly quit the show and was replaced by the painfully unfunny Carlos Mencia, three "lost" episodes have been cobbled together from the material that Dave produced before his exodus. I thought tonight's episode was quite funny and it seemed like Dave had a good sense of humor about his new found wealth by making light of his large paycheck to continue Chappelle's Show. I hope the last two episodes are equally funny. It's sort of a sad way to go out but I guess the plus side of all this is that there will be no more annoying catchphrases repeated incessantly by idiot fans.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Pirates of the Caribbean Too

Too damn long that is. I guess it was okay, but what is this obsession with stretching movie length to over two hours just for the sake of making an "epic?" If the story requires it, that's one thing, but there could have been a little more editing without sacrificing any plot in this case.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Home Again, Home Again

Over this long holiday weekend, Roxi and spent about two of the four days making stage one of our move into the house I grew up in. My brother Garrett and his girlfriend Nicole have been living there for the past few years while my parents are temporarily living in Houston, TX for work. They have been sort of acting as caretakers in exchange for living rent free. Garrett and Nicole were in the process of moving to Brooklyn, NY at the same time I was moving back to Lafayette and so Roxi and I were asked if we would like to live in the old house.

When I first moved back from Nashville, I unpacked most of my things at the house but there is the issue of Roxi's we spent the better part of Monday moving a lot of her bigger items into the house. It wasn't as bad as we thought it might be and by Monday night, we were set up in my old room at the house. It's nice to be back in the house although we have our work cut out for us. There is a LOT of stuff in the house that is out of place because of all the renovations my parents have been doing. There is a lot of clutter, but we are already working to bring some order back to the chaos. Hopefully in a few weeks, we'll have it nice and comfortable again. And then we'll be ready for visitors!

Monday, July 03, 2006

That would have been some kind of fireworks display!

Early this morning, asteroid 2004 XP14 came within 269,000 miles of the Earth, almost as close Moon does every day. The Earth was in no danger of a collision, but the asteroid is about half a mile wide and would have done some serious damage wherever it hit. It's a good thing it wasn't coming too close though because I just don't know if Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck could have saved the world this time considering all of the trouble the space shuttle launch seems to be having.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Are you "Lost?"

Roxi and I just finished watching Season 2 of Lost this morning and I finally feel like I can write about it without the risk of spoiler laden comments from. I have been a fan of the idea of the show since the beginning, but I was unable to devote the time to tune in each week during it's first season. For those who are unaware, it follows a group of survivors of a commercial plane crash on a mysterious island in the South Pacific. The island as well as the survivors have so many secrets, each episode usually focuses on one of the islands' secrets and one of the survivors' past. It makes for some compelling though often times soap opera-y television.

Thanks to Netflix, I was able to watch Season 1 of the show without the annoyance of week-long breaks from the action. I am pretty much convinced that this is the way to watch such a serialized show. I have faithfully tuned in to several shows like it such as Twin Peaks and the first three seasons of 24 to name a few, but when I got Netflix, I started catching up on shows like the Six Feet Under and the Sopranos and in doing so realized that there is almost no reason to actually watch a show as it unfolds over the course of a season.

Roxi caught up a few weeks after me and then we decided to use a gift card I received to purchase Season 2 from iTunes. We started watching the episodes about a month ago and finished this morning. Although there were a lot of cool and interesting revelations in the second season, the show seems to have fallen victim to other successful shows of it's nature: The writers probably never expected to last this long, so they are having to put in a lot of filler in order to keep the major story arcs going. Still, it teases my interest just enough to keep me coming back for more.

I highly recommend checking out Lost and giving it a chance if you don't appreciate it right away. The cliffhanger at the end of each episode should be enough to make you desperate another episode. I would also be interested in any theories other fans have about what exactly is going on on that island. Please feel free to post your ideas in the comments section.