A Review for a Movie I Haven't Seen

I haven't seen Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. But I don't think I need to. For one thing, every review has said it's awful. Worse than the second one. Let's go back in time…

It's 2003 and, being a person who is a fan of Johnny Depp, (when I was 8, I wanted to be a professional narc because of his role on 21 Jump Street) and of pirates in general and who has friends with happy childhood memories of the ride at Disney Land, I go see Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. I have low expectations. My friends have low expectations. We may or may not be sneaking beer into the movie theatre. We are pleasantly surprised. The film isn't half bad. It's actually kind of good. And we're pretty sure it's not just the beer talking. The rest of America agrees with us. The movie is a huge hit.

Now it's 2006 and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest is in theatres. I am less interested to see this one. Sequels are often horrible failures. Nonetheless, I see the film with much of the same group as in 2003. This time, there is no beer. I think this is only marginally responsible for why I LOATHE it. My companions also loathe it. We agree that it is aimless and cartoonish. For 2 and a half hours, Keira Knightly obnoxiously harrumphes around, Johnny Depp acts like Wile E. Coyote and peach-fuzz-faced Orlando Bloom whisper-acts in tights. The special effects are indeed grand but do not disguise the fact that there is no plot to speak of. There are at least 20 minutes of film that do not need to be there at all.

I see the movie AGAIN with my boyfriend who could not make it the first time. That's love for you. This time there is (maybe) beer, but it doesn't help. It is still so much worse the second time. I believe this is because every second I know exactly how much longer I have to sit there and endure this atrocity. My boyfriend agrees that it is awful but we aren't the sort of people who leave movie theatres. When it is finally over, I vow that I will not see the third one. I was raised Catholic so I have a background in self-inflicted suffering, but I think even Jesus would agree that this is just too much.

This does NOT look good.

Back to the future! My very sweet boyfriend who loves pirates and has a faulty memory wants to see At World's End. My knee-jerk response is a violent outburst of “Eff no!” followed by a more controlled “I mean, you can go see it with your friends but I don't really care to see it myself.” He admits that the reviews all say it's terrible. Worse than the second. And longer. LONGER. Forget Hell. In Sunday School, they should just teach kids that if they're bad, they will be sentenced to an eternity watching Gore Verbinski director's cuts. My boyfriend may still see it. He may not. He and I both know it will suck. AMERICA knows it will suck. The WORLD knows it will suck. The title: At World's End may or may not be a portend for the Apocalypse. The world will see it anyway. I tried to warn you.


More Fun Than Having a Real Baby…

…Is using the promotional website for the upcoming Judd Apatow movie, Knocked Up called The Babymaker. Here is the result of my playing god, whom I have dubbed Galen Tyrol Baxter Brugos. It's a boy:

He would be kind of cute if he had less blotchy skin and full eyebrows. Oh well. I guess I should have laid off the smack during my pregnancy.

It's a pretty fun program. If any of you out there do one, I'd love to see the result. I bet an Elyse/Wade baby would be pretty awesome.

Meme Time

60 old questions, new questions and strangely worded questions.

Who was your first prom date?

Who was your first roommate?
Do dorm roommates count? I had 3 of them. A nice, quiet science major, an aspiring aerobics instructor and a crazy girl named Jessica with a drawer full of sex toys. She was a lot of fun. Sadly, she left midway through the year. My first elected roommates were my friend Kristie and her dorm roommate, Abbey, who hated me and left me passive-aggressive notes about cleaning the house.

3. What was your first alcoholic drink?
Either Schnapps in my cocoa from my mom trying to help me sleep or a sip of my dad's Sam Adams.

4. What was your first job?
Other than babysitting, my first job was at a Bed and Breakfast in Tacoma making beds and vacuuming.

5. What was your first car?
First and only: My '89 Volvo wagon.

6. Who was the first person you texted today?
No one. I'm trying to cut back.

7. Who is the first person you thought of this morning?
The man sleeping next to me.

8. Who was your first grade teacher?
I don't really remember any of my teachers before middle school because I moved around so much. I do know that in 3rd grade, I was in 3 different schools in one year.

9. Where did you go on your first ride on an airplane/helicopter?
Must have been from Texas to Oregon when we moved when I was 2. I don't remember it.

10. When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?
I sneaked out to smoke cigarettes by the lake. I met some kids there who were on acid. They invited me back to one of their houses and I hung out with them while they tripped. One of the boys was cute.

11. Who was your first best friend and are you still friends with them?
Joe Schultz when I was 6 or 7. I am not still friends with him. His family was from Germany and I think they moved back there. I've tried looking him up, but that's like trying to look up John Smith.

12. Where was your first sleep over?
Joe Schultz' house. The dude had an awesome Lego collection and his mom made us Nutella and butter sandwiches.

13. Who was the first person you talked to this morning?

14. Whose wedding were you in the first time?
I was the flower girl in my uncle's wedding when I 6. I took my job very seriously.

15. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
Groan and stall.

16. What was the first concert you ever went to?
New Kids on the Block.

17. First tattoo or piercing?
My shooting star when I was 18.

18. First foreign country you went to?
Cancun Mexico with my family when I was 5.

19. First crush?
Besides Han Solo, I was kind of late bloomer on crushes. I just wanted to be friends with all the boys (because I didn't get along with girls, really) and, sadly, as I got older they thought that meant I had a crush on them. I think I didn't really have a crush on a boy until 5th grade. I can't remember his name but he was this kind of chubby blonde kid who later grew up to be a super hot punk rock kid.

20. First TRUE love?

21. When was your first detention?
We didn't really have detention. We had “demerits” which were like a slap on the wrist only not at all painful.

22. Who was your first kiss?
Robert. Summer camp. He was 12. I was 14. Scandalous.

23. What was the first state you lived in?

24. Who was the first person to break your heart?
Michael Cross.

25. Who will be the first to repost this?
Elyse or Mark?

26. Do you still talk to the person you lost your virginity to?
I don't even know if he's still alive.

27. Is it harder to be rejected or to reject someone?
Be rejected, duh.

28. What kind of music did you listen to in elementary school?
Top 40 and oldies.

29. What is the best thing about your current job?

30. Do you wish cell phone etiquette was a required class?
I doubt it would work.

31. What is the last thing you drank?
Water. And I gots to pee.

32. Have you been on a date in the past week?
Not really, no. But I'm easy to please.

33. Where are you going on your next vacation?
Kachess Lake! Camping!

34. Have you ever thrown up from working out?
No. Is that a goal I should have?

35. Are most of the friends in your life new or old?
Half and half.

36. Have you ever gotten so wasted you didn’t know what was going on?
I'm pretty much always aware even when I'm so drunk the room is spinning. And I haven't gotten THAT drunk since I stopped drinking Mad Dog Mimosas.

37. Do you like pulpy orange juice?
Pulp free, baby!

38. Are you touchy feely?
With my b/f, yes. With good friends, just a hug hello and goodbye is sufficient. Or the occasional joke pat on the ass.

39. Did you cry at your high school graduation?
No. That was sweat. It was 100 degrees.

40. Do you prefer the tanning bed or the sun?
The sun and lots of sun block. I do not like the cancer.

41. What are your 2 favorite places to eat?
TWO places? Um…Taste of India and The Crocodile.

42. What could you tolerate, someone who snores or a sleep walker?
Sleep walker. Because then they wouldn't be lying next to me snoring and keeping me up.

43. Do you consider yourself bi-polar?
Nope. I didn't know you could consider yourself a medical condition. “I consider myself a sufferer of Leukemia!”

44. What's something your friends make fun of you for?

45. What's your worst personality flaw?

46. Would you ever parachute off of a plane?

47. Have you ever ridden an elephant?
Yes! At the county fair when I was a kid. It was awesome.

48. Are you Irish in any way?
Yes. In several ways.

49. Have you ever ridden in a U-Haul?
I have DRIVEN a U-Haul. For a minute before making my companion take over.

50. Do you like to play Scrabble?
Yes. But I rarely win.

51. Have you ever been to a nude beach?
Yes. In Spain.

52. Have you ever had Jack Daniels?
Yeeees. Both in drink and BBQ sauce forms.

53. Have you ever had sex on the beach?
Only the obnoxiously named drink. I do not like having my underwear in my ass so I doubt millions of grains of sand would feel any better.

54. What are you saving your money up for right now?
Emergencies. Possible trip to New Zealand.

55. What was the last gift card you received?

56. Have you ever gone skinny dipping?
Still no.

57. Does the number of people a person's slept with affect your opinion of him or her?
Of course. It's very telling information.

58. Have you ever gone to a party where you were the only sober person?
Yes. But I'm sure I remedied it quickly.

59. What do you do when you spy a bug in your house?
When I spy a fly, I let it lie. When I spy a spider I take it outside-r.

60. What is your favorite flavor of Jello?
The kind that is pudding.

Weekend Recap


Brugos, Brad and I began our evening at Tangletown, enjoying the strange paintings of children and monkeys and our very Jael-esque hostess. Then we retired to the Bettie Page for a game of Catan and a movie. The movie was Who Killed the Electric Car?.


The weather forecast had called for rain and gloom, but a bright sun woke me and Brugos from our slumber. At noon, arrived at our doorstep. Since it was bright and sunny outside, we decided to venture down to the Cheese Festival in the Market. As we waited for the bus, Brugos realized that sunny doesn't always mean warm, and began to regret wearing shorts, a short-sleeved shirt and sandals.

Once at the market, we decided to eat a sensible lunch before stuffing ourselves with cheese. We opted for the Bolivian restaurant with the big deck and plenty of tables. We soon understood that there were plenty of outdoor tables because the deck was elevated and windy. Still, every once in a while, the wind died down and we appreciated a moment or 2 of blazing sun and a view of the water. While we waited for our food, Brugos decided he couldn't make it through the day in what he was wearing and ran over to the tourist shop to buy the least touristy sweatshirt he could find.

The food was pretty good, but the menu was somewhat lacking in vegetarian fare. I'm not sure I would go again to pay $9 for a salad, even if it was a very delicious salad. However, it did leave me with plenty of room in my belly to stuff with cheese!

We dutifully queued up in what appeared to be the line for cheese samples. However, as we neared the table, a Cheesefest official informed us that there was, in fact, no line. It was a Cheesy Free For All. We were encouraged to use whatever means necessary to elbow our way to the free cheese. This plan seemed to lack foresight, given how many hundreds of people were milling about the Market at that moment, but if that's what we must do…

And we were not deprived of cheese. Sure, there were plenty of varieties we never even saw through the throngs of bodies, let alone got to try, but after about 30 minutes of pushing and stabbing (with toothpicks, of course), we were satisfactorily stuffed with cheese. I do hope that next year they decide to organize it a little better, however. I would like to have been a little more selective about what I tried instead of tasting whatever I had access to. It would have been easy to do. Just have everyone systematically weave around the tables in a line and perhaps give them a ticket if they like a certain cheese. They can later use that ticket to find the cheese in a festival tent “store” at the end of the line. Just my suggestion. But I suppose queuing up isn't very American, now is it?

Next, we decided to work off the cheese by wandering around the Sculpture Park. There were a few more additions since Brugos and I were last there at the grand opening. I must say, however, for the most part I find the sculptures fairly uninspired. How is rusting metal on a pole art? What about logs and metal? Or wavy rusting metal? The only sculpture I really like is the silver tree that looks like a real tree. It's still nice to walk around outside though.

We found ourselves at Shorty's by the window, enjoying some rare (especially at Shorty's) sunbeams and an afternoon drink. Boozer met us, fresh from shopping and going to a non-traditional Bride Expo of sorts at Vain. She was mostly there for the free cupcakes. After a while, the dark clouds we had seen off in the distance caught up with us and dumped rain. Mark asserted that in 5 minutes, the rain would stop and it would be safe to catch a bus. We timed him. He was right.

Boozer headed back up the hill and Mark, Brugos and I went back to the U-District to eat some dinner and plan our next move. We ended up at Veggie Veggie, a vegetarian (go figure) Thai restaurant next to Thai Tom on the Ave. I was particularly excited about the prospect of trying their fake prawns. I ordered them in the garlic fried rice. I did not realize that when they said “garlic fried rice” they meant that garlic would be the main ingredient. HOLY CRAP. My first bite was shocking. I love garlic, but I'm not inclined to just munch on heads of the stuff. That's what this tasted like. I was very hungry and ate it anyway, knowing that my breath would pay for it later. It was one of those meals that made me glad I wasn't on a first date. The prawns themselves weren't all that bad. They had a rubbery consistency, as I remember shrimp to have. They even went to the trouble of painting red striped on each one. Brugos said if they'd really wanted attention to detail, they should have added a soy poop vein.

Detailed shrimp aside, we were all kind of underwhelmed with our food.

We headed back to Bettie Page and made some phone calls. Eventually, we decided to meet Steve and Cat for drink at the Bier Stube. When we got there, it was crowded but not overly so. As we waited for Steve and Cat, however, the place filled up with students. It wasn't long before we were fending people off of the saved seats. When Steve and Cat finally arrived, it was taking forever to order a drink so we decided to finish up the drinks we had and Plan B-it back to Bettie Page after a trip to QFC.

It was one of those rare nights where the conversation alone was interesting enough to keep us going into the wee hours. I can't remember what all we talked about. There was much wine involved. I know there was talk of 80's sitcoms, the actual Jump The Shark episode of Happy Days, and many poop stories. I didn't say we were intellectuals. I just said the conversation was interesting. Around 3am, Cat and Steve declared it bed time, and we took our leave of each other's company.


I awoke at 7am and my head made me aware that I was hung over. I drank some water and went back to sleep. At 10, Brugos and I were up for good and tooled around until Mark woke up. It was took late for him to eat breakfast because he was scheduled to have lunch with Faye at 1, but he joined us anyway at the Wayward Cafe. This vegan cafe around the corner is very DIY (you basically have to do everything except cook the food), but the food is amazing. Mark ended up getting some hash browns to tide him over. I pocketed a big chocolate chip cookie for later.

Mark and I chatted about funny cat behavior (give us a break. It's what people do when they don't have kids) until Faye arrived to take him to soup. Mark's a blast to hang out with. Hopefully some day he'll stick around longer than 24 hours.

Brugos had some work to catch up on, so I was left to my own devices. I decided to wander down to the UW street fair. However, the rain made me tire of gawking at hippies rather quickly. I returned home to eat my cookie and watch The (British) Office before falling asleep on the couch. Yes, I was still hung over. I awoke an hour or so later to find Brugos finally done with work. We ate dinner and watched The Science of Sleep (not as good as a Charlie Kaufman/Gondry project, but still entertaining) before experimenting with some sleep ourselves.


Those Meddling Christians

Christians are apparently becoming as obnoxious as drunk crazy people on the bus. This morning, on my express bus downtown, I was sitting in standard “Isolated Commuter” mode, with my ipod ear buds in and my face in a book, when I felt a tap on my leg. I looked over at the girl sitting next to me and saw her mouth a question to me. Thinking that perhaps she was a tourist or someone who needed a quick answer, I turned my ipod off, leaving my ear buds in and asked her to repeat her question. “Are you going to school at the UW?,” she asked. I politely replied that I was not a student and turned my face back to my book, but the questions continued. “Do you work?” “Where do you work?” “Are you an actor?” It was then that I noticed the well worn travel bible in her lap. Crap!

By the way, I know that the Bible has thousands of pages and really small print, but don't these people ever get tired of JUST reading ONE book? I mean, Charles Dickens wrote some pretty good stuff.

Her barrage of questions continued. As the bus pulled onto the express lane, I realized I was in for the long haul and put my book away and took out my ear buds. She asked me if I'd ever traveled. When I mentioned Holland, a euphemism for “I got fucked up in Amsterdam”, she was at a loss. “What's in Holland?” I was tempted to answer her questions with 100% disclosure to piss her off, but opted for the route of seeming as boring as possible to get her to leave me alone. I told her about the Van Gough and Anne Frank museums, both of which I'd skipped in favor of debauchery. In fact, the only museum Faye and I visited in Amsterdam was the Sex Museum. We were high as kites as we walked around giggling about erect cocks throughout history. I did not tell this to the Little Missionary That Could. She told me that she'd been to Rome to follow the life of Paul. She asked me if I was familiar with the Apostle, Paul. I told her I was, hoping she would peg me as already converted and shut up. But nay. She GRABBED MY LEFT HAND and said “No ring, I see. Not married?” I confirmed her obnoxious observation. “How old are you?” I told her. “Do you have any children?” I found this to be a strange question coming from a Christian who already knew I wasn't married, but I told her I had no children. “I see,” she responded. “Just staying focused, huh?” WHAAA? What does that MEAN?! Yes. I am unmarried and childless at 28 because I am focused on…preserving my chastity? It does take quite a lot of effort whatwith all of Satans temptations at every turn. She told me that she'd asked if I was an actor because SHE is part of a “Ministry Improv Group” that travels around the state torturing people in schools and prisons. She said she thought I looked “cool” and might be involved in acting. I should have told her that I do dabble in acting and perhaps she's seen one of my films. I played Tittania in “A Midsummer Nights Cream”. Didn't see that one?

We arrived at the first stop downtown and thankfully, her fellow missionaries, littered throughout the coach, no doubt harassing other poor, unsuspecting commuters, told her it was time to depart. With a hopeful look on her face, she asked me if this was my stop. It wasn't, but if it had been, I probably would have stayed on an extra couple of blocks.

Beware of the bible toting young people on the morning commute!

A Vampire With a Soul?!

Joss Whedon must be turning in his gravy over learning about the “new” CBS show “Moonlight” that will debut this fall about a goddamned VAMPIRE DETECTIVE. Oh no, we've certainly never heard of anything like THAT before. But this show is different, because the vampire detective hates all other vampires and is tortured over his love for a mortal woman and…wait a minute…

Seriously, WTF? Where was CBS a couple of years ago when an already awesome and original vampire detective show with a cult following needed a new network? I will watch the pilot of this show, but I will NOT enjoy it. Not while James Marsters and Alexis Denisof remain mostly unemployed and Boreanaz slums it on the poorly written “Bones”.

No, the only way I will enjoy “Moonlight” is if Angel himself shows up as the Vinnie Van Lowe to this guy's Keith Mars. And even then, I'll be rooting for Vinnie.

The Big Block

I have LJ writer's block. I'm not sure why other than the fact that work has been very busy and I have been sad about a couple of things (which makes me not want to write for fear of sounding too emo). I have mostly been enjoying life, the improving weather, friends, my awesome boyfriend and even my job but writer's blocks do tend to be somewhat inexplicable. Apologies to those of you who enjoy my updates. I have some exciting events coming up including my dear friend MarkTapioKines visiting and a Memorial Weekend camping trip so I will probably get inspired again soon. In the meantime, check out my movie reviews on my work blog.



Hindsight is Way More Fun

Happy May Day. They finally removed the blood-soaked rag from the sidewalk outside my office building!

Also, I'm thinking of leaving work early because of the protest. This is my one night at home this week and I really don't want to spend several hours on the bus trying to get there or hang out downtown until 7:00 waiting for the worker's protest to clear. I'm glad they have the right to protest. But I really want to go home and chill tonight.

But what I really want to talk about is this: Remember that scene in Trainspotting where Rents and Sick Boy are discussing solo careers? Sick Boy maintains the fact that even a really talented musician who was once great with a band, will never be as good on his own. Examples include Morrissey, Frank Black, Lou Reed and now, Jarvis Cocker.

In 1996, I saw Pulp play the tiny 9:30 Club in DC. This was a big deal because that year, Pulp were HUGE in England. They were selling out Wembley Stadium, yet here they were in a small 300-capacity club in the US. Sure, the venue was sold out, but they were still relatively unknown. This was before William Shatner brought “Common People” to light.

At this tiny club, Javis brought it. He was playing to the cheap seats, even in a venue that had no cheap seats. Apart from being sweating distance from Joe Strummer in 1999, it may have been the greatest performance in my show-going history.

Last night I saw the same man, 11 years later, play the Showbox. The Showbox is a superior Seattle concert venue. Lots of seats in the bar with good views and a great sound system. Jarvis was still an energetic performer, but and I'm sure this is something that every ex-frontman turned solo act must struggle with, he played NO PULP SONGS. At the moment, he has one solo record out. It's alright. It's no Pulp record. He played the entire thing. When he and his band left the stage to prepare for the encore, he had no album tracks left. I thought for sure he would play a Pulp song. Instead, he played the HIDDEN album track. Right. Forgot about that. But now, surely, he would play a Pulp song. ANY Pulp song. Doesn't have to be “Common People”. In fact, I'd prefer it wasn't. If you don't want to do anything from “This Is Hardcore”, I'll take a song from that silly hippie record, “We Love Life”.

But nay. Out of solo songs, he played “Purple Haze”. It was a tribute to being in Seattle. It sounded great. Better than most of the set even. But damnit, I wanted to hear a Pulp song. For god's sake, he WROTE all of those songs. He should have the rights to them. Strummer played several of his tracks off of London Calling when on tour with the Mescaleros. I suppose Jarvis is trying to distance himself from all that. I wouldn't have minded if I didn't find his solo record so mediocre. So Sub-Pulp. I was excited to see Jarvis on stage. He is, in many ways, a totem for me. But last night was kind of a bummer. Perhaps I am a joyless curmudgeon. But I really wanted to hear a goddamned Pulp song.