Life in the Slow Lane

February 25, 2010

My Razzies ballot

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Movies — pauljlane @ 5:03 pm

Following is how I voted in the 2009 Razzies competition.

Even they can't believe how bad "Land of the Lost" was, and they were in it.


My vote is x’ed in each category. This year’s Razzies event is the 30th anniversary gala.


____  BATTLFIELD EARTH (2000) 

 __x__  FREDDY GOT FINGERED (2001) 

____  GIGLI(2003) 

____  I KNOW WHO KILLED ME (2007) 

____  SWEPT AWAY (2002) 


____  Mariah Carey  

__x__  Paris Hilton

____  Lindsay Lohan  

____  JenniferLopez

____  Madonna  


____  Ben Affleck 

____  Eddie Murphy 

__x__  Mike Myers

____  Rob Schneider 

____  John Travolta 


____  Any Two (or More) Jonas Brothers /THE JONAS BROTHERS 3-D CONCERT EXPERIENCE

____  Sandra Bullock & Bradley Cooper / ALL ABOUT STEVE 

____  Will Ferrell & Any Co-Star, Creature or “Comic Riff” / LAND OF THE LOST

____  Shia LeBouf & EITHER Megan Fox OR AnyTransformer / TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN

__x__  Kristin Stewart & EITHER Robert Pattinson OR Taylor Whatz-His-Fang,TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON 


____ALLABOUT STEVE, Screenplayby Kim Barker

____  G.I. JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA, Screenplay by Stuart Beattieand David Elliot & Paul Lovett,

               Based on Hasbro’s G.I. JOE® Characters.           

__x__  LAND OF THE LOST, Written by Chris Henchy& Dennis McNicholas,

               Based on Sid & Marty Krofft’sTV Series

____  TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN, Written by Ehren Kruger & Roberto Orci

               & Alex Kurtzman, Based on Hasbro’s TransformersAction Figures 

____TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON, Screenplay by Melissa Rosenberg, Based on the Novel by Stephenie Meyer  



__x__  LAND OF THE LOST            

____  PINK PANTHER 2 (A Rip-Off of a Sequel to a Remake)


____TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON                                             


____  Billy Ray Cyrus / HANNAH MONTANA: THE MOVIE

____  Hugh Heffner (as Himself) MISS MARCH

__x__  Robert Pattinson / TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON

____  Jorma Taccone (as Cha-Ka) LAND OF THE LOST     

____  Marlon Wayans / G.I. JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA 


__x__  Candice Bergen / BRIDE WARS 

____  Ali Larter / OBSESSED 

____  Sienna Miller / G.I. JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA

____  Kelly Preston / OLD DOGS 
____  Julie White (as Mom) TRANNIES, TOO


____  Michael Bay / TRANNIES, TOO

____  Walt Becker / OLD DOGS 

__x__  Brad Silberling / LAND OF THE LOST

____  Stephen Sommers / G.I. JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA

____  Phil Traill / ALL ABOUT STEVE


____  Beyonce / OBSESSED

__x__  Sandra Bullock / ALL ABOUT STEVE                                     



____  Sarah Jessica Parker / DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THE MORGANS? 

WORST ACTOR of 2009 

____  All Three Jonas Brothers /  JONAS BROTHERS 3-D CONCERT EXPERIENCE

__x__  Will Ferrell / LAND OF THE LOST

____  Steve Martin / PINK PANTHER 2

____  Eddie Murphy / IMAGINE THAT

____ John Travolta / OLD DOGS 





____  OLD DOGS 



January 25, 2010

Disney princesses offer royal treat for kids

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Parenting — pauljlane @ 5:30 pm

We took the kids to see the Disney on Ice “Princess Classics” show in Buffalo.

So many princesses.

All of the big names were there -— Cinderella, Snow White, Ariel, et al (how, by the way, did they all land princes to marry?) But they were quashed in volume by the dozens of little girls in full princess gear (not Penny, though, who had on a “The Princess and the Frog” shirt). Crowns, gowns, shoes — you name it, it was princessed out.

The show was longer than we expected, as we got out after 3 p.m. from a 1 p.m. start (there was a brief intermission). But it didn’t seem that long.

Most of the stories were rushed through, but that wasn’t a big deal. The kids just wanted to see their favorite characters, and the parents have seen the movies more than enough times to have the lines memorized. The skating, as you would expect, was top-notch, with the characters interacting with audience members and a few dazzling effects thrown in.

Penny loved pretty much the entire show (especially her new Snow White doll), while Rigby got a charge out of seeing Sebastian the crab and Goofy (he pointed and laughed, then commenced flirting with the young princess in the row behind us). The house was more full than I would have thought, with more than three-fourths of the lower bowl full for a Sunday afternoon show (shows take place Wednesday-Sunday in each city).

Was it worth going to? Well, Penny has spent the following day asking to see “The Princesses” again, so that that for what you will.

November 9, 2009

2009 Charlie Brown Christmas special to air Dec. 1

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Television — pauljlane @ 5:00 pm

ABC announced that the 2009 airing of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” will take 67505_003place at 8 p.m. Dec. 1.

The holiday classic, perhaps the best special that airs during the Christmas season, sees Charlie Brown debate the true meaning of the holiday while dealing with a Christmas play, a possession-obsessed sister and a lackluster lil’ Christmas tree.

Click here for details on the 2009 airing of “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.”

2009 Charlie Brown special to air Thanksgiving night

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Television — pauljlane @ 4:55 pm

ABC announced that the 2009 showing of “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” will67501_005_ful take place at 8 p.m. Thanksgiving night (Nov. 26).

The annual special sees Charlie Brown try to arrange a special dinner for his crew, only to have the caterers — Snoopy and Woodstock — screw things up with a toast and popcorn entree.

Airing with “Thanksgiving” will be “This is America, Charlie Brown: The Mayflower Voyagers,” a cartoon that takes the Peanuts gang back to 1620 and the 65-day voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to North America.

Click here for details on the 2009 airing of “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”

November 5, 2009

Anniversary issue offers gender-based food for thought

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Television — pauljlane @ 3:41 pm

While watching an episode of “White Collar” last night (the USA show is excellent, by the way), I was taken aback by the subplot involving the FBI agent’s inability to come up with a sufficient anniversary gift for his wife.

yes_dear copy

The doofus husband who often forgets dates is a staple of sitcoms such as "Yes, Dear."

He eventually did, of course, but she didn’t get him a single darn thing.

And that got me thinking.

In any TV program or movie you see, it’s the man who’s the gift-giver on anniversary day. You have the ridiculous stereotype about the “Forgetful Father” who bumbles his way through life while not remembering the anniversary date and other special occasions. You have fictional men going all-out to please their wives with vacations, jewelry, dinners and the like. And even the diamond commercials lay heavy into this sentiment (“this anniversary, give her something that shows you actually care”).

So, what gives? Why is anniversary giving (in fictional worlds, at least) all on the man?

Wasn’t the woman at the wedding, after all? And don’t they say that weddings are all about what the woman wants? So why does she get to just sit back and be lavished upon year after year.

No, for the record, this sentiment isn’t reflective of any real-life misgivings on my part. My wife and I decide each year not to give gifts to each other, instead just enjoying dinner and/or a movie together.

But TV and movies can persuade some viewers, so these stereotypes – while not as harmful as those beer commercials with the nearly naked women – can do harm to relationships. If you’re saturated with any message to a certain extent, it will rub off on you in some form.

I’ve never been married to anyone else (nor will I be), so I don’t know what the “normal” anniversary gift-giving arrangement is. But I hope it’s nothing like what TV would have me believe.

October 26, 2009

Protest the New York state license plate fees

Filed under: Life,News — pauljlane @ 1:45 pm

New York state, in another “eff-you” to its residents, is about to charge people — twice! — for license plates next year.

As of April 1, New York wants to charge every driver $25 per vehicle to get new plates. And then if you want the same number, you have to pay another $20 for the privilege.

What an absolute joke and abomination of what public servants should be. Is anyone in Albany actually desirous to keep people here? Our leaders sure don’t seem to act that way.

Click here to sign a petition protesting the move.

October 20, 2009

This is why we should abolish reality television

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Television — pauljlane @ 12:41 pm

If Balloon Boy isn’t enough, here’s this idiot, as reported by The Associated Press. Granted, he showed a bit of initiative, and the stock market isn’t what it once was for newbie investors, but still, come on.


The winner of reality TV show “Big Brother” has confessed to using his $500,000 prize to buy thousands of oxycodone pills and resell them, authorities said.
Adam Jasinski, 31, of Delray Beach, Fla., has been charged with attempting to sell 2,000 pills in Massachusetts to a government witness.
Federal prosecutors said Jasinski was arrested Saturday after he flew to Boston and showed the witness a sock containing two plastic bags filled with oxycodone, a powerful painkiller that is a popular street drug because of its euphoric effects.
As agents tried to arrest Jasinski at a strip mall in North Reading, he struggled and threw the sock under a car parked nearby, Todd Prough, a special agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration, said in an affidavit filed in court.
Jasinski won $500,000 last year on the CBS reality show in which contestants live under constant surveillance and vote once a week to evict each other in hopes of becoming the last houseguest standing and winning the grand prize.
Prough said in the affidavit that Jasinski told him that he has been using his winnings to buy thousands of oxycodone pills and has been reselling them along the East Coast for the past several months.
Jasinski’s lawyer, Valerie Carter, did not immediately return a call Tuesday.
He faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine on a charge of possession of oxycodone pills with intent to distribute.

October 19, 2009

There has to be life out there … doesn’t there?

Filed under: Life,News,Travel — pauljlane @ 3:37 pm

I remember doing a group exercise in college during which we discussed myth vs. reality. One of my groupmates said she believed in ghosts, and another said she thought zombies were real.

Strange, I thought, but I wasn’t there to be judgmental. When my turn came up, I said I believed that there is life somewhere, somehow that’s not on Earth.

I was laughed at so loudly the professor had to stop the exercise to shush them.

Don’t mistake my statement for a belief in little green men flying saucers in New Mexico. But with so much universe out there, there has to be other life, even if it’s life with which we’ll never make contact … I think.

That’s why announcements such as this one, that 32 more planets have been found outside our solar system, get me so excited. I would love to have new life discovered in my lifetime. It’s not just a validation thing, but it would be the finding of all-time, the greatest discovery in the history of man.

Imagine if we actually found someone (or something) else out there. Just to know that we’re not alone in the universe is a fascinating concept.

In another life – ya know, the life where I didn’t marry the love of my life, have the two best babies in the world, was good at advanced math and weighed about half of my current tally – I might have ended up an astronaut. Aside from joining one of the most elite groups every (those who have seen Earth from the outside), my childhood interest in astronomy was piqued by the desire to prove that something else is breathing somewhere.

Scientists recently discovered that there’s water on the moon, further proof that there might have, at one time, been non-Earthbound life in our solar system. No government conspiracies, no bent-on-destruction races with advanced technology, no “Star Wars” type cantinas with plenty of hostile patrons.

Just another race, like ours, that’s kinda curious about the nature of the universe.

That’s not such a laughable concept. Right?

September 21, 2009

New wedding dance craze not exactly thrilling

Filed under: Entertainment,Life,Music — pauljlane @ 4:57 pm

I’ve been to two weddings in the past couple weeks, and at both of them I’ve seen something I thought I never would.

People showing love to Michael Jackson.

“Thriller” was played at both weddings. At both occasions, people attempted to perform the dance from the music video. Both times, they failed.

Having looked it up on Youtube, I see that I might be a little bit behind the times with this. But I’m really not sure how I feel about this. So, let’s break it down.

POSITIVES: Well, “Thriller” is a better song than pretty much any other song you’ll hear at any wedding (“We Are Family,” for example). It definitely makes people want to dance, and it can’t help but make you feel happier. In fact, more Jackson songs than just this would be welcome; gimme some “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” or “Beat It,” for cryin’ out loud.

NEGATIVES: Well, you have to watch people butcher the dance. I know that weddings are the place to cut loose in ways you wouldn’t ordinarily, but at both weddings I went to I saw people coordinate, get through about six measures of the song, screw up, stop, laugh and meander through the rest of the tune doing the zombie walk. That’s not especially entertaining. Also, while this trend did start before Jackson’s passing, would the song receive the same cheery reception if he were alive, and still known as a weirdo rather than musical genius? Just saying.

At the end of the day, I guess there’s no problem with hearing the song at a wedding (at least for now, ask me again in 10 years when “Thriller” reaches the pit that the Macarena currently occupies). I’d throw out the caveat, though, that unless you REALLY know the moves fromt he video, don’t imitate it. Just go out there and do that awkward shuffle-step taht most people do as a dance.

Unless you’re these guys. Then the floor is yours.

July 8, 2009

Canadians are far greener than us Yanks

Filed under: Life,News,Travel — pauljlane @ 5:33 pm

We went to Toronto this past weekend to spend some family time up north, and there were a couple things that struck me.
First, and this is not new there, but the food courts in the mall feature receptables for trash, paper recyclables, plastic recyclables and metal recyclables.
Second, a law apparently went into effect June 1 in Ontario that requires stores to charge at least 5 cents to customers per plastic bag they’re given. That’s meant to curb the use of plastic bags, which are generally used once and then thrown away.
I love both of these concepts. Many Americans don’t think twice about what they throw out, and I find the culture in Toronto to be much more enlightened when it comes to the environment. I am always trying to get store clerks to give me items without the bag (sometimes they just give it to me anyway, even when I only buy one thing), and it amazes me how many people insist on a bag to carry their one item from the store to the car, the car to inside and then on the kitchen counter.
My wife brought up a good point, that stores there should offer those reusable shopping bags so that customers who actually need help carrying their items can get it. But at least the new regulation is a first step.
I would love to see these concepts embraced stateside. This country often lags behind the world on such affairs, though, so I won’t hold my breath.
Thumbs up, Canada. I salute you on this one.

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