Hot Rod is a 2007 comedy starring Andy Samberg as Rod Kimble, an amateur stuntman desperately seeking approval from his dying stepfather. Rod spends his days doing various jumps and stunts with his inept crew, which includes his friends Rico and Dave (Danny McBride and Bill Hader) and his half-brother Kevin (Jorma Taccone). He finds out that his stepfather will die unless they somehow get $50,000 to pay for his conveniently priced surgery. Rods vows to save him so he can smash his face in and finally earn his respect. He starts doing stunts to raise money, with the ultimate goal of jumping fifteen school buses in front of a sellout crowd. There’s also a subplot involving Rod trying to get the attention of Denise (Isla Fisher), the girl next door. She’s stuck in a relationship with a douchebag (Will Arnett), but she can’t deny her attraction to Rod.
The whole movie is pretty ridiculous. It’s reminiscent of Judd Apatow movies, in that it’s character driven and highly quotable, but there are many fantastic, over the top moments. Like when the inspirational march to the final jump spontaneously erupts into chaos. Hot Rod was a box office bomb when it came out. I think the world wasn’t ready for it. It’s becoming a cult classic; some would argue it already is.
I’m not a picky eater, but I always pay attention to the expiration date. Especially with milk. I can’t drink milk if it’s expired. It doesn’t matter if it’s the day after it expires or if it’s the exact date. I just can’t do it. I’m even a little reluctant if I notice that tomorrow is the expiration date. It somehow makes the milk taste sour and weird. It’s all psychological, but it still tastes funny. Bottled water also has an expiration date, and I’d sooner pour it down the drain than drink it. I know that the expiration date is not the end of the world. I’m totally ok with eating canned goods after the expiration date, provided it’s within a week or two of the expiration date. I figure if it can last for years without spoiling, it’s earned a few days’ grace period. But it still tastes funny.
Ray J is a wannabe R&B singer/actor. A few people have heard of him because he’s Brandy’s little brother and also because he fucked Kim Kardashian before she was all used up. He basically owes everything he has to Brandy. She got him a recording contract and a role in Moesha. He was sort of in the public eye, but nobody was looking at him intentionally. It was still enough to get hot chicks to sleep with him, and one of those hotties was Kim Kardashian. They went out for a while and they made some home movies and one of them got leaked on the Internet. At that point, Ray J was already a falling star and Kim was a virtual unknown. The sex tape reminded a few people that he was still alive, but it turned Kim Kardashian into a household name. After the sex tape she got offers to do a reality show called Keeping Up with the Kardashians, which led to all of the terrible spin-offs and the eventual 24-hour Kardashian Network. The sex tape launched her career into the stratosphere, and Ray J’s stalled out. He’s always been second fiddle and he always will be. He’s kind of a joke because he’s not famous enough to be a punchline.
Eating at Taco Bell is never a great idea, but sometimes you get the craving for mystery meat wrapped in a fake tortilla. You’ll make the trek to Taco Bell and order a combo meal and regret it a few bites in. Taco Bell isn’t really known for its quality food. But now they have a new burrito, the Cantina Steak Burrito, and it almost tastes like a real burrito. It’s the closest thing to actual food that they have on the menu. It was created by Chef Lorena Garcia, and I don’t know who she is, but she’s all over the advertisements for it so I’m assuming she’s famous. It has thick cut marinated steak, black beans, Latin rice, romaine lettuce, guacamole, pico de gallo, corn, pepper salsa, and cilantro dressing. It sounds better than it actually is. It’s still Taco Bell, so it’s still terrible. But at least they are trying to make their food edible now.
I really wasn’t planning on seeing The Hangover Part III but it was raining and every other movie was sold out. So I shrugged my shoulders and bought a ticket, thinking it couldn’t be as bad as the Part II. And it wasn’t. I actually liked the movie and think it’s pretty funny. It’s not as good as the original, it’s not as quotable, and it’s not as memorable, but at least they changed the formula and tried something new. Part II was just a clone of the first one and should be ignored. Part III is the true sequel.
The original cast is back, as is writer and director Todd Phillips. The only person missing is Mike Tyson. The biggest difference between this one and the first two is that that there is no actual hangover until the very end, and the main focus is on Alan and Chow (Zach Galifianakis and Ken Jeong), instead of focusing on the Wolf Pack. Chow does some truly ridiculous things, and Zach Galifianakis is goofy and awkward and just looking at him makes you laugh. They drive the plot and get all the good lines. Ed Helms has a few good bits, but his best moment comes during the credits. Bradley Cooper is there the whole time, but he doesn’t do anything significant to advance the plot. And Justin Bartha is once again MIA once the story gets rolling.
Melissa McCarthy has a small role as a potential love interest for Alan. They have great chemistry and their love connection was one of the true highlights of the film. My favorite moment of the whole movie was the tender reunion between Alan and little baby Carlos, who is no longer a baby. It was hilarious and touching at the same time, another of the few scenes that elevate the quality of the movie.
This is not a perfect sequel, but it’s way better than Part II. It’s a decent way to wrap up the franchise. You might not care about the sequels, but you still care about the characters and it’s a satisfying way to end their story. It’s tough to say that I recommend this movie… but if you were on the fence about seeing it, it’s worth it.
We went to the movies the other night and we got there kind of late. There were no open seats except for in the front row. We briefly debated returning our tickets and getting our money back, but then we decided to suck it up and sit in the front. Sitting in the front row makes you feel like you’re a little kid staring at the TV from a foot away. The screen is so big and wide that you physically have to move your head around in order to follow the action. You get a crick in your neck from constantly tilting your head back and you leave the theater all sore, like you were working out instead of sitting on your ass in the dark for two hours. Sitting in the front row is your punishment for smoking in the parking lot beforehand. Bring an edible next time.
I came home the other day and noticed that there were seven flies buzzing around my kitchen. They were bumbling and bumping into the window, desperately trying to find a way out. I took it upon myself to give them a way out, and I’m not talking about opening a window. I looked around for an old newspaper or magazine to roll up, and then my roommate’s brand new DustBuster caught my eye. Basic math will tell you that a DustBuster + Household Pests = Sucking Up Houseflies. It’s just as fast as swatting them with a newspaper and it won’t leave fly corpses on the floor or any blood smears on the wall. I can’t quite call it humane, but it’s less violent and that’s gotta be worth something. The DustBuster is bagless, so those fuckers are just chilling in the tank, trapped like prisoners in an inescapable cell. Let this be a warning to all the other flies, bugs, spiders, and pests in the world. Don’t fuck with me or I’ll DustBust your ass too.
Neil Gaiman is a great writer and he knows how to write comic books. Batman is one of the best comic book characters of all time. And when you combine a great comic book writer with a great comic book character, you get a great comic book. Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? is about the death of Batman, narrated by a disembodied Batman who is watching his own funeral. The story begins with Batman in a coffin and notable people in his life arriving to pay their last respects. Batman’s friends and allies sit side by side with his enemies and foes, and they each tell their story about the life and death of Batman. But their stories conflict and contradict each other. Batman dies in different ways depending on who is talking. Batman slowly comes to realize that he is having a near death experience, and that’s not even the main twist. This is a very important Batman comic, and a very short read. There’s no excuse for not reading it, especially if you consider yourself a Batman fan. The trade paperback even includes a few other short Batman comics as a bonus. Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? isn’t the best Batman Comic of all time, but I would put it somewhere in the top twenty.
A bucket list is a list of things that you want to do before you kick the bucket. Everybody’s going to die, but not everybody is prepared for it. You’re probably planning on living to be a hundred years old, but you could get hit by a bus tomorrow. It’s a list of things that you’ve always wanted to do but never did, a reminder to experience life firsthand. Most bucket lists are similar: tell the people you love that you love them, make peace with your enemies, go backpacking through Europe, go to Chicago for a slice of real deep dish pizza, etc. A lot of things on your average bucket list are dangerous, life-threatening activities like skydiving, river rafting, and yelling racial slurs in a bad neighborhood. Something about defying death makes you feel so alive. Some people think that a bucket list is about dying. It’s really about living.
I was rummaging through a bunch of crap in my room and rediscovered my Mini Maglite. Maglite makes some of the best flashlights on the market, and the Mini Maglite is ideal for a keychain. And that’s where I put it, right on my keychain. A Mini Maglite isn’t as bright or powerful as its bigger counterpart, but it’s still better than most keychain lights. I’ve only been carrying it for a week or two, and it’s already come in handy a few times. I never realized how many dark places I walk though on a daily basis, but now I have a way to fight the darkness. I just need to grab my keys and then there is light. I don’t have to fumble through my phone for the flashlight app or stumble blindly through the dark anymore. I’ll still stub my toe somehow, but I’ll be able to see it when it happens.
Umpires are humans and humans make mistakes, but that doesn’t make you feel any better when an ump blows a call and your team loses. Major League Baseball needs to accept the inevitable and embrace instant replay to review controversial calls. They already do it for homeruns, but they need to do it for plays at the plate too. Maybe each team can challenge a call twice per game or maybe they can challenge once every three innings. It wouldn’t be too much of a hindrance or slow the game down too much. The umpires seem to be the biggest opponent of utilizing instant replay. They need to shut the fuck up. It won’t put them out of a job or anything. The NBA, the NFL, the NHL all use instant replay and we never saw an influx of referees on welfare. Umpires are an integral part of the MLB, they aren’t going anywhere. There’s nothing wrong with technology, especially if it makes you do your job better. I don’t want to see any more perfect games getting ruined by an inept umpire. The future is now and human error should be a thing of the past.
I came home from work yesterday and noticed that something was different in my apartment. All the lights were off and my roommate’s door was wide open but there was no sign of him. And there was a new toilet in the bathroom and the old one was missing. I’m guessing that my landlord came in while my roommates and I were all out of the house and randomly changed the toilet that we’ve been bitching about for over a year. The old toilet had a cracked lid and the tank was constantly running. I thought that they were supposed to give us notice 24 hours in advance before entering our apartment, but I’m not going to complain about a toilet upgrade. Now I’m shitting in style, perched up on a shiny new throne. I’m going to be busy eating tons of Taco Bell and fiber the next few days… I gotta break this bad boy in.
Star Wars Episode II Cerealwas a promotional cereal released by General Mills. It’s probably my favorite cereal of all time, and I only had it for a few glorious weeks before it vanished from store shelves. It was sweetened corn puffs with marshmallows shaped like clone troopers, little Yodas, space ships, little R2-D2s, and lightsabers… it was basically Kix with marshmallows. And it was Star Wars related, which makes it exponentially better. It was so good that they rehashed it for Episode III. The only difference is that the Episode III Cereal included R2-D2, C-3PO, and lightsaber-shaped marshmallows. I remember going into a Big Lots in December of 2002 and seeing a whole aisle of discounted boxes of Episode II Cereal for 99¢ each. I bought fifty boxes and finished my Christmas shopping at the same time. I wish there was a way of knowing you’re in the good old days before you left them. I miss that cereal.
An eye twitch is an involuntary spasm of the eyelid. It’s caused by stress, fatigue, caffeine, or small bugs burrowing into your eyeball. It’s not that noticeable but it’s definitely annoying. It normally goes away after a few days, but it’s been known to plague people for a lifetime. My eye has been twitching for a few days now. I would say that it’s stress, but my life is pretty stress-free. The only thing I’m stressed about is this fucking eye twitch. And the more it twitches, the more stressed I get. It’s a vicious cycle. So if I’m talking to you and you think I’m winking at you, don’t flatter yourself. It’s just a small bug burrowing into my eye causing my eye to spasm at inopportune times. I really don’t like you. It’s eye bugs. I swear.
Craigslist Joe is one of those documentaries with a simple but intriguing premise that ends up taking you places you never thought possible. It begins with a guy named Joe Garner wondering if he could survive for 31 days living off the kindness of strangers that he meets on Craigslist. He begins by cutting himself off from friends and family members. He gets a new phone with no contacts and no numbers whatsoever. Then he begins his mission of survival. Each day he has to find food, shelter, and something to do, all via Craigslist. He makes his way from Los Angeles to Portland to New York City to New Orleans… he even goes to San Francisco and meets the actual Craig from Craigslist. He goes all over the US and even ventures into Mexico briefly. He hitched rides, he made new friends, and he formed new bonds. Anyone who has ever been on a road trip knows that time slows down and real conversations happen and real relationships are formed. The biggest flaw of the documentary is that is focuses too much on Joe and not enough on the people that he meets. I mean he’s traveling with a cameraman who is doing everything that Joe is doing, but all you see is Joe taking a free dance lesson, or Joe walking the flood-damaged streets of New Orleans in silent reflection, or Joe drinking a cup of joe. The best thing about Craigslist Joe is that it makes you wonder if you could survive for thirty-one days living off the Internet. Yeah, you could. But do you have the balls to do it? Check it out on Netflix or iTunes or find it streaming online somewhere.
I live in San Francisco’s Sunset District. It’s the largest and most populated SF district, but it feels like you’re in the suburbs as opposed to being in the city. There’s not much crime and it’s generally safe to walk the streets at night. But apparently there are gangs and they protect their turf, and I’m right in the middle of a turf war. I know this because they tagged my recycling pin. They actually wasted paint and sprayed graffiti on it. I know that they have to protect their illegal drugs, gambling, and prostitution rackets, but I had no idea that my cans, bottles, and ripped up junk mail are just as valuable. I think I’m going to quit my job and get in on the action now that I know there’s money in illicit recycling. Does anyone want to join my recycling gang?
It’s easy to say that you’ll do something, but it’s easier to do nothing. People are inherently lazy. That’s why somebody is always backing out at the last minute. It doesn’t matter if you make a commitment a year in advance or the night before, it’s just too easy to back out at the last minute. They will be talking like they are going all day, but a hour or two before shit goes down they will call and back out. They will usually have two or three mediocre reasons for why they can’t make it, and they’ll always apologize halfheartedly: “I know I said that I would go to your wedding, but it’s 45 minutes away and there’s traffic. Plus I can’t stay out too late because I have to work in the morning. I hate to do this, but I have to bail.” Everybody has flaked at one point or another. But some people make a habit of it. It’s easy to make a commitment; it’s way harder to stay committed.