Thursday, December 29, 2005

University Student Creates Online Times Square

A University business student from England, Alex Tew, has just handed Internet Marketers their lunch. As a money making scheme to earn money for school, he created a website, The Million Dollar Homepage, where he sells pixel dots for a buck each. That may not sound like much but it takes a 10 by 10 dot square to make up a letter for $100 smackaroos. Needless to say, most people want more than just one letter. Even though most of the ads are for UK companies, at least they are linked to something. Below is what this concept looks like in action.

Million Dollar Homepage - Alex Tew
There are 3 very cool things about this set up
  • The site looks like a virtual Times Square at Night
  • He was smart enough to do a press release when he reached $1000 instead of just keeping the bragging rights to himself
  • Alex is getting job offers and attention from investors, even though he's the equivalent to a first term college freshman.
I'd say the money spent on his schooling was well invested.

New York Times Square at Night

Time Square at Night (New Years Eve 2004)

Here's the gist of the Reuters article from Yahoo! News. I left out the snotty comments because there's no point in having them in. I'm interested in the young man's story, not how cute the writer thinks he is.

Cash pours in for UK student with Web idea

By Peter Graff

Thu Dec 29,11:04 AM ET

LONDON (Reuters)

Alex Tew, a 21-year-old student from a small town in England, earned a cool million dollars in four months on the Internet.

Selling porn? Dealing prescription drugs? Nope. All he sells are pixels, the tiny dots on the screen that appear when you call up his home page.

He had the brainstorm for his million dollar home page, called, logically enough,, while lying in bed thinking out how he would pay for university.

The idea: turn his home page into a billboard made up of a million dots, and sell them for a dollar a dot to anyone who wants to put up their logo. A 10 by 10 dot square, roughly the size of a letter of type, costs $100.

He sold a few to his brothers and some friends, and when he had made $1,000, he issued a press release.

That was picked up by the news media, spread around the Internet, and soon advertisers for everything from dating sites to casinos to real estate agents to The Times of London were putting up real cash for pixels, with links to their own sites.

So far they have bought up 911,800 pixels. Tew's home page now looks like an online Times Square, festooned with a multi-colored confetti of ads.

"All the money's kind of sitting in a bank account," Tew told Reuters from his home in Wiltshire, southwest England. "I've treated myself to a car. I've only just passed my driving test so I've bought myself a little black mini."

The site features testimonials from advertisers, some of whom bought spots as a lark, only to discover that they were receiving actual valuable Web hits for a fraction of the cost of traditional Internet advertising.

Meanwhile Tew has had to juggle running the site with his first term at university, where he is studying business.

"It's been quite a difficulty trying to balance going to lectures and doing the site," he said.

But he may not have to study for long. Job offers have been coming in from Internet companies impressed by a young man who managed to figure out an original way to make money online.

"I didn't expect it to happen like that," Tew said. "To have the job offers and approaches from investors -- the whole thing is kind of surreal. I'm still in a state of disbelief."

Alex Tew September 2005

Alex Tew with Million Dollar Homepage in September 2005. Courtesy of David Burn's article Pixel Pusher Rakes It In. Of course the copiers and bandwagon jumpers have already started.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Media Mogul Oprah Winfrey Opens The Color Purple on Broadway

I'm glad Oprah decided to move on from her percieved slight. Hopefully this will be the beginning of a successful run for her play on Broadway. God knows she needs the money. ; ]

Oprah Winfrey

Talk show host Oprah Winfrey arrives to the opening night of her new Broadway play 'The Color Purple' , Thursday, Dec. 1, 2005, in New York.

Oprah Winfrey

Media mogul Oprah Winfrey, right, hugs actress Angela Bassett as they arrive to the opening night of Winfrey's new Broadway play 'The Color Purple' on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2005, in New York. I wonder if Angela committed a faux pas by wearing purple/lavender.

Oprah Winfrey

Talk show host Oprah Winfrey, left, is escorted by fellow talk show host David Letterman to the opening night of Winfrey's Broadway play 'The Color Purple' on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2005, in New York.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Change 1 Letter and the Whole Thing Switches Up

This past Sunday, the San Jose Mercury News published the results of a word contest. The goal of What a Difference 1 Letter Makes was to alter a word by one letter and share the new meaning. There were some words that should go into circulation as soon as possible.


Escapegoat: One who bears the blame for others' mistakes and then manages to pass the blame to someone else. Karen Hopkins - San Jose

Factose Intolerant: An agenda that refuses to be swayed by truth or data. Duff Howell - Felton


Bipod: Animal that moves about on two feet with wires trailing from its ears. Ken Braly - San Jose

Blogy: Condition arising from reading too many blogs, as in "blog hangover". Catherine Kitcho - Mountain View

Blurprint: A vague idea of how to proceed. Nuriya Janss - Sunnyvale

Condominimum: A 400-square-foot condo that, in San Jose, costs $600,000. David Myers - San Jose

Hark Drive: Driving around the valley with someone who always has to point out and make it clear that 50 years ago on the plot of land currently occupied by a high-tech firm was a cherry orchard, ostrich farm, stereoscope repair shop or some other relic of an era gone by. Patrick Leal - Los Gatos

Hosing market: Silicon Valley real estate. Bruce Kerr - Mountain View

iPad: Living space completely overrun with Apple products. Byron Cheng - Los Altos

Jestation: Time it takes to come up with another dumb joke. Rick Blackman - Santa Clara

Nagosecond: The amount of time between the shouted command to do something and the moment when you whould have accomplished the task on your own. Allen Fleishman - San Jose

Nervana: State of supreme bliss achieved through chutzpah. Sheila Scobba Banning - Sunnyvale

Phactasm: A product of fantasy that is presented as fact. Chris Ringer - Sunnyvale

Referendumb: A bad idea that made it to a vote. Woody Carroll - Santa Cruz

Smell Checker: Checks to see if your spelling stinks. Nancy Lowe -Morgan Hill

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Rest in Peace, Sam - "World's Ugliest Dog"

I was sad to find out from a Yahoo News article that Sam - "World's Ugliest Dog" recently died, Friday, 18 November 2005. As the roommate of a small dog, I can image what Susie is going through. Luckily Culo is only turning 9 in January, so I hope that means we have a few more years. You can find out more information on Sam & Susie's Blog or Sam Ugliest Dog website. I read in one of the Yahoo Message Board Posts that the funeral is next Monday, November 28th at 10 am. Unfortunately, they didn't state the location, but I'm sure it's around Santa Barabra, CA.

Sam-World's Ugliest Dog

Part of pre-funeral eulogy from Craig Schmitman’s Big Dog:

Sam, a Chinese Crested Dog entered in our World's Ugliest Dog contest and known throughout the world as Sam, the World's Ugliest Dog, has passed away. He was fifteen. We were notified of his death during a phone call with his owner, Susie Lockheed, today.

Anyone who has spent anytime with Susie and Sam would know that she adored him, and, he adored her.

Sam helped Susie through some difficult health issues and Susie also credits him for helping her find her fiance. In addition to the love she showered on the little dog, Susie likely also saved his life when her fostering him on a temporary basis turned into an adoption.

Meet Tater Tot

Sam-World's Ugliest Dog's Girlfriend, Tater Tot

Sam's Girlfriend, his sweetheart.

Sam-World's Ugliest Dog with  Girlfriend, Tater Tot

For more so ugly they are cute dogs, check out: Look for the dog with the tongue the size of a man's arm and the melting dog.

Sam-World's Ugliest Dog @ CNN
Sam-World's Ugliest Dog @ CNN

Sam article with video at CNN, 11-22-05 Watch Sam's bizarre gait and hear him howl.

World's Ugliest Dog Dies at 14
Tue Nov 22,12:17 PM ET - Yahoo News

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Sam, the tiny dog whose hairless body and crooked teeth earned him a reputation as the World's Ugliest Dog, has died.

The pooch died Friday, just short of his 15th birthday, his owner said.

"I don't think there'll ever be another Sam," Susie Lockheed said, adding: "Some people would think that's a good thing."

Sam won the ugliest dog contest at the Sonoma-Marin Fair this summer for the third year in a row. The pedigreed Chinese crested had made appearances on TV in Japan, radio in New Zealand and in Britain's Daily Mirror tabloid. He also had met Donald Trump on a talk show set.

Lockheed said she initially was terrified of Sam when she agreed to take him in as a rescue dog six years ago on a 48-hour trial basis. Although she fell in love with him, his appearance repulsed her then-boyfriend and prompted the man to break up with her.

Later, however, Sam became a matchmaker by bringing together Lockheed and her current beau, who saw a picture of the two on an online dating site.

Lockheed said she had Sam euthanized after she learned Sam's heart was failing.

She said she's felt a little lost ever since, and is sleeping with Sam's favorite toy — a stuffed bear he picked up and carried home.
Sam-World's Ugliest Dog with Susie

By chance, Susie is putting out a Sam calendar this year for 2006. I for one plan to buy one to help her out and because it's my chance to get a closer look.

Sam-World's Ugliest Dog with Susie

Thursday, November 03, 2005

All Hat - No Cattle

Dubya Bush has slipped his leash.

This article is the best explanation I've seen on the topic.

Ladies and Gentlemen: The Real George W. Bush
by Stephen Pizzo
October 27, 2005

I found this editorial on my favorite website to read the New York Times columnists, Bob Herbert and Maureen Dowd, for free, Topple Bush. Be sure to read the comments at the bottom. Some of them are a kick in the pants.


Either way, Bush is finished as a force in American politics. How he ever got to become president in the first place -- not once, but twice -- will remain a subject social scientists will study and debate for decades to come. Because there was plenty of evidence that George W. Bush was a made man. He had accomplished nothing in his adult life on his own -- not one thing.

These benefactors had learned long ago that there was more money and more power to be had in the shadows than in the limelight. All they needed was the right person to front for them -- someone with a name, a smile, a confident swagger. Vision, dreams, hopes and ethics were not only unnecessary, but liabilities in a beard. All they needed was a person they could program, wind up and send out into the public spotlight and deliver for them.

They began by nurturing Bush's pathetic efforts to become a high-rolling Texas oil man. Though his companies failed, they made sure he never did. Then they were able to further his ascendancy by indulging his playful side, buying him his own baseball team -- a Texas baseball team. That raised Bush's public profile to just a notch below their ultimate goal: public office.

Fully groomed and programmed, they finally steered Bush towards the goal. And it worked, probably beyond their wildest expectations.

Bagging the United States presidency was an unexpected super-bonus. Still, they knew it was a development ripe with as much danger as opportunity. After all, they knew the real George W. Bush. There was no way they could send that hayseed off to the Big Show unattended. Dick Cheney and Karl Rove were tasked with keeping their idiot prince both on message and on a short leash. God forbid he should ever make a speech, take a position, or make a decision on his own.

And just as it looked as if he was on the way to fulfilling another assignment -- the elimination of the estate tax -- his beard fell off. It was the thing they had always feared most: the real George W. Bush went public. There it was, for the whole world to see: a chuckling, twitching dope of man standing in front of the American people, unleashed and unscripted. Worse yet, he was making his own decisions. He chose his friend and admirer, Harriet Miers, for the Supreme Court of the United States of America.

What went wrong? Where were his handlers? Busy. They dropped Bush's leash when handed subpoenas. Junior was unleashed and home alone.

It's as if the police had come and dragged Edgar Bergin offstage in the middle of a show, leaving Charlie McCarthy, wide-eyed, mouth agape and slumped alone on his stool.

So, what now?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

IMDb 15th Year Anniversary - October 17, 2005

One of my most favorite websites just hit their 15 year Anniversary, The Internet Movie Database. IMDb was one of the first websites, along with Netscape and Yahoo, that I memorized when I first got on the world wide web in 1995. (Even though I didn't know it at the time, I had first joined the internet by way of IRC and e-mail during college in the late 80s via Unix command line, text terminals.) Today, it's almost a threeway tie between IMDb, All Music Guide and Amazon as to my favorite websites, but IMDb wins hands down. I love how the website has grown and stretched with the internet.

In honor of the anniversary and with the help of another favorite movie site, The Numbers, I've compiled my own Top 15 list of the movies that have come out since 1990.
Wow, was it hard. I started with 50 and with a bit of hair pulling, I managed to get down to 15. It helped when I decided to leave off the ones that show up on everyones' lists (the Fight Clubs, the Shawshanks, the Usual Suspects, the Office Spaces). I suprised myself with the number of foreign films that remained after pruning. Another suprise is how many movies that came out in 1995 I like. I didn't think that was a special year.
1990-2005 Top 15

Buena Vista Social Club (1999)
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004)
Farewell My Concubine (1993)
Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999)
Ghost in the Shell (1995)
Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004)
Io non ho paura [I'm Not Scared] (2003)
Karakter (1997)
Men in Black (1997)
Minority Report (2002)
Se7en (1995)
The Magdalene Sisters (2002)
The Remains of the Day (1993)
Xiu Xiu: The Sent Down Girl (1999)

Happy Belated B-Day!! My Love Letter, to you.

I think my favorite innovation, besides getting rid of the many icons that used to be at the tops of pages and took FOREVER to load, especially on a dial-up modem, is the breakdown of people pages. I remember when everything used to be jumbled together and some popular people would have to be scrolled so much to see everything. I just wish more people would upload a picture. I'm also glad we don't have to know what kind of crew member someone was to find them.

Thanks for the hours and hours and hours of entertainment over the years.


Some other Movies I really liked since 1990 but didn't make the Top 15 list

Apostle (1997)
Bone Collector (1999)
Cidade de Deus (2002)
Cool Runnings (1993)
Crash (2004)
Dancehall Queen (1997)
Dead Again (1991)
Devil's Advocate (1997)
Ed Wood (1994)
Enchanted April (1992)
Fargo (1996)
Fight Club (1999)
Gosford Park (2001)
Hair Show (2004)
Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2001)
High Fidelity (2000)
House Party (1990)
Howards End (1992)
Independence Day (1996)
Like Water for Chocolate (1993)
Matrix (1999)
Office Space (1999)
Ônibus 174 (2002)
Rush Hour (1998)
Shall we dansu? (1996)
Shawshank Redemption (1994)
Shrek (2001)
Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Sling Blade (1996)
Swimming with Sharks (1994)
Swingers (1996)
Usual Suspects (1995)
Thelma & Louise (1991)
Wayne's World (1992)
You Got Served (2004)

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Moonbats vs. Wingnuts

Today while reading the ravings of lunatics on the Yahoo Message Boards, I ran into the concept of Moonbats and Wingnuts. The Yahoo Message Boards are officially a place to comment about the different articles that appear on the Yahoo News area. In reality, it's a hostile, antisocial pit that gives hateful people who feel too constrained in normal social situations a chance to randomly spew their nonsensical, feeble, often racist and sexist "thoughts". Usually mixed in between these troll postings are intelligent people actually trying to have a conversation or share insightful thoughts, so that makes it worthwhile to read the boards. After a while you figure out how to avoid some of the troll postings by the signs such as all caps subject line, a racist or sexist subject line or profile name. Unfortunately, they change their names too often to try to memorize names.

So, in one of the postings, someone mentioned the terms moonbats and wingnuts. Looks like moonbat is what Conservatives call Liberals they don't agree with. Wingnuts is what Liberals call Conservatives they don't agree with. Of course, we all know that name calling is the best, most productive way to work to resolve differences and find a common ground to work together.


Moonbat aka A Loony Leftist
Moonbats think this website on the Ultimate Wingnut Challenge is funny and they look at the term as a badge of honor.


Wingnut aka Right Wing Nut

Wingnuts have the habit of picking apart an argument by bringing in utterly irrelevant details. They like to call themselves the Moral Majority even though they are in fact a niche market or a special interest group, just like everyone else.

The funny thing to me is the both sides use the same terms to describe each other like demagogue, agitator, fanatic, schismatic, inciter, inflamer, instigator, radical, dogmatist, revisionist, zealot and the worst,
politician. It's like the ends of an ideological spectrum that touch in the black area.

Spectrum with Black Touching Ends
Curving Spectrum with the ends that meet in the back.

Ideological Spectrum
Ideological Spectrum Sample

Friday, September 30, 2005

Pssssst! Kanye!!

I love this PhotoChop.
I remember when I used to write notes like these.

By the way, here's the original picture where President Bush is asking Condi Rice if he can go pee pee. Or maybe it was poo poo?

Reuters - Wed Sep 14, 4:39 PM ET

U.S. President George W. Bush writes a note to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice during a Security Council meeting at the 2005 World Summit and 60th General Assembly of the United Nations in New York September 14, 2005. World leaders are exploring ways to revitalize the United Nations at a summit on Wednesday but their blueprint falls short of Secretary-General Kofi Annan's vision of freedom from want, persecution and war. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

Friday, September 09, 2005

Cisco Mobile Network on Wheels & Converged Technology Showcase


Wednesday night, I got the wonderful opportunity to check out Cisco's Network on Wheels van and Techology Showcase, set up on their San Jose campus. It was part of the SilcWIT Technology Showcase & Product Demonstration event put on by Silicon Valley Women in Technology group. The evening started off with the chance to check out the booths of technology businesses associated with the Women's Technology Cluster.

There was a range of products from keyboards and mice designed for children, KidzMouse, to a charitable organization, GivingGlobal. I chatted with the folks at three of the booths. Clairvoyante has a very cool product. They are able to get super sharp images, Liquid Crystal Displays, for device LCD panels. It's like seeing 8 megapixel digital pictures on a space smaller than my Motorola Razr screen. Of couse my phone looked primative, pixelated and bulky next to the wafer thin demo screen. I can't wait until it's readily available. ClipShack and LucidLink were the other booths I stopped to check out.

The Cisco Systems Moblie Showcase, also know as the Cisco Network On Wheels (now) is a 25-foot mobile self contained vans are loaded with the latest Cisco networking technologies designed for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

Inside of Cisco NOW Van

Inside of Cisco Network on Wheels (NOW) Van

Outside of Cisco NOW Van

Outside of Cisco Network on Wheels (NOW) Van

The van was full of end to end network equipment and peripherals, like IP phones, PDAs and servers. As long you can dial into the company VPN, you are hooked into everything you can get in the office. Including getting your desk phone calls on your laptop. The van's a great idea, worth copying by other companies since it can get places those tractor trailers that park in front of places like Fry's can't get to. Plus it's less intimdating.

The evening ended with a tour of Cisco's Converged City, a showcase of voice, data and video solutions designed especially for small-to-medium sized businesses. Part of a building on Cisco's campus was set up as a series of rooms with different Cisco technology implementations. It was a like a physical use case where your whole body accomplishes tasks rather than only your brain.
Cisco Logo
Just pick an industry, think of a task that needs to be done then you could go to that room and get a look oat how you could set it you using Cisco. For example, one area showed how a retail store clerk could check inventory or look up information about an item from a PDA they carry around. Even ring up a credit card purchase without having to go back to the cash registers. Of course Cisco had bleeding edge stuff in the showcase, so I was happiy.

Monday, September 05, 2005

United States of Shame - Hurricane Katrina 2005

This article from the New York Times was so right on, I had to share the whole thing. The two quotes that make me shake my head the most:

Michael Brown, the blithering idiot in charge of FEMA - a job he trained for by running something called the International Arabian Horse Association - admitted he didn't know until Thursday that there were 15,000 desperate, dehydrated, hungry, angry, dying victims of Katrina in the New Orleans Convention Center.
It would be one thing if President Bush and his inner circle - Dick Cheney was vacationing in Wyoming; Condi Rice was shoe shopping at Ferragamo's on Fifth Avenue and attended "Spamalot" before bloggers chased her back to Washington; and Andy Card was off in Maine - lacked empathy but could get the job done. But it is a chilling lack of empathy combined with a stunning lack of efficiency that could make this administration implode.

Personally I'm impressed by the Bush "Nobody Expected the Levees to Fail" administration's dedication for taking time off. In the technology field, yu have to force people to take their vacations half the time. I can't be too mad at Dr. Condoleezza Rice, Ferragamo does have some cute shoes.

Ferragamo Sandals


New York Times Logo

Dowd Picture

September 3, 2005

United States of Shame


Stuff happens.

And when you combine limited government with incompetent government, lethal stuff happens.

America is once more plunged into a snake pit of anarchy, death, looting, raping, marauding thugs, suffering innocents, a shattered infrastructure, a gutted police force, insufficient troop levels and criminally negligent government planning. But this time it's happening in America.

W. drove his budget-cutting Chevy to the levee, and it wasn't dry. Bye, bye, American lives. "I don't think anyone anticipated the breach of the levees," he told Diane Sawyer.

Shirt-sleeves rolled up, W. finally landed in Hell yesterday and chuckled about his wild boozing days in "the great city" of N'Awlins. He was clearly moved. "You know, I'm going to fly out of here in a minute," he said on the runway at the New Orleans International Airport, "but I want you to know that I'm not going to forget what I've seen." Out of the cameras' range, and avoided by W., was a convoy of thousands of sick and dying people, some sprawled on the floor or dumped on baggage carousels at a makeshift M*A*S*H unit inside the terminal.

Why does this self-styled "can do" president always lapse into such lame "who could have known?" excuses.

Who on earth could have known that Osama bin Laden wanted to attack us by flying planes into buildings? Any official who bothered to read the trellis of pre-9/11 intelligence briefs.

Who on earth could have known that an American invasion of Iraq would spawn a brutal insurgency, terrorist recruiting boom and possible civil war? Any official who bothered to read the C.I.A.'s prewar reports.

Who on earth could have known that New Orleans's sinking levees were at risk from a strong hurricane? Anybody who bothered to read the endless warnings over the years about the Big Easy's uneasy fishbowl.

In June 2004, Walter Maestri, emergency management chief for Jefferson Parish, fretted to The Times-Picayune in New Orleans: "It appears that the money has been moved in the president's budget to handle homeland security and the war in Iraq, and I suppose that's the price we pay. Nobody locally is happy that the levees can't be finished, and we are doing everything we can to make the case that this is a security issue for us."

Not only was the money depleted by the Bush folly in Iraq; 30 percent of the National Guard and about half its equipment are in Iraq.

Ron Fournier of The Associated Press reported that the Army Corps of Engineers asked for $105 million for hurricane and flood programs in New Orleans last year. The White House carved it to about $40 million. But President Bush and Congress agreed to a $286.4 billion pork-filled highway bill with 6,000 pet projects, including a $231 million bridge for a small, uninhabited Alaskan island.

Just last year, Federal Emergency Management Agency officials practiced how they would respond to a fake hurricane that caused floods and stranded New Orleans residents. Imagine the feeble FEMA's response to Katrina if they had not prepared.

Michael Brown, the blithering idiot in charge of FEMA - a job he trained for by running something called the International Arabian Horse Association - admitted he didn't know until Thursday that there were 15,000 desperate, dehydrated, hungry, angry, dying victims of Katrina in the New Orleans Convention Center.

Was he sacked instantly? No, our tone-deaf president hailed him in Mobile, Ala., yesterday: "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job."

It would be one thing if President Bush and his inner circle - Dick Cheney was vacationing in Wyoming; Condi Rice was shoe shopping at Ferragamo's on Fifth Avenue and attended "Spamalot" before bloggers chased her back to Washington; and Andy Card was off in Maine - lacked empathy but could get the job done. But it is a chilling lack of empathy combined with a stunning lack of efficiency that could make this administration implode.

When the president and vice president rashly shook off our allies and our respect for international law to pursue a war built on lies, when they sanctioned torture, they shook the faith of the world in American ideals.

When they were deaf for so long to the horrific misery and cries for help of the victims in New Orleans - most of them poor and black, like those stuck at the back of the evacuation line yesterday while 700 guests and employees of the Hyatt Hotel were bused out first - they shook the faith of all Americans in American ideals. And made us ashamed.

Who are we if we can't take care of our own?


Friday, September 02, 2005

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin - Moratorium on Politicians Congratulating Each Other

I was blown away by what I heard when I clicked on an innocent looking CNN feed on the Real Guide homepage:

Mayor fed up with slow response
In an interview with WWL Radio's Garland Robinette, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin expresses frustration and anger at the federal government. (August 2)

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin

I don't want to see anybody do any more goddamn press conferences. Put a moratorium on press conferences. Don't do another press conference until the resources are in this city, and they come down to this city, and stand with us, with their military trucks and troops that we can't even count. Don't tell me there are 40,000 people coming here, they're not here! It's too goddamn late!
Get off your asses and let's do something

And I'm telling you right now, they're showing all these reports of looting, people doing all that weird stuff, and they are doing that. But people are desperate. They're trying to find food and water. The majority of them.
You have some knuckleheads out there, taking advantage of the lawlessness, this situation where, you know, we can't really control it, and they're doing some awful, awful things. But that's a small [minority] of the people. Most people are looking to try and survive.

When I heard The Garland Robinette Show interview with Mayor Ray Nagin, it was very moving and rare to hear a politician talk so sincerely and with such passion. His radio interview highlighted how, much real compassion and empathy is missing from most reports on the people stuck in New Orleans. He talked like he was OF the people instead of doing something FOR the people lke most politicians. I feel like Mr. Nagin was playing New Orleans Mayor Russian roulette. He happens to be the guy in the mayor seat when everything went down. Just making the best of living with the legacy of decisions made long ago. Even before he was born.

Most news reporters distance themselves from the people, emotionally. But I have to hand it to Shepard Smith [New York Times Article that mentions the incident] from Fox News. He wouldn't let Bill O'Reilly do his regular belittlement and dismissal of people who don't toe the line of the point he's trying to make. (O'Reilly was making the point that all people were impacted by Hurricane Katrina equally without regard to race or class.) Smith recklessly told stories about how some tourists were marched to the front of the line to get on the next busses in front of locals who'd been waiting up to 5 days in the Superdome. I'm sure these are the same tourists who ordered and paid for busses that got commandeered by the military. Of course, the media and people in the Superdome wouldn't know that.

Regardless of the reprecussions of the interview, know that at least one person out there in cyberspace stands behind Mayor Ray Nagin. Even if he did commit political suicide, it was for a worthy cause.

A Couple of Random Comments

Great Quote from a local radio DJ

It's nice that the President can interrupt his vacation to see how we livin'.

Baton Rouge Police Scanner

Hurricane Katrina Help Hub

Hurricane Katrina "I'm OK" Registry

Representative Elijah Cummings (D - Maryland) attemping to make Bush and his crew feel shame about the response Hurricane Katrina aftermath.

Donate Housing :: Find Shelter

Friday, August 26, 2005

Bellyache & Headache Inducing Laughs from TWOP SYTYCD Show 6

I'm having such a good time laughing at/with the Television Without Pity forum postings, I decided to do a "highlight reel" of my favorite postings. I know that taking the quotes out of context will probably make them weak, but I sure enjoyed reading them the first time through. Obviously, you had to of watched the show Wednesday, August 23 on Fox or some taping of it. Some things may depend on watching earlier shows. Almost forgot, the headache and stomach cramp came from trying to hold in my laugh and not to laugh out loud while reading the board at my desk during lunch. Away we go.


So You Think You Can Dance Logo

Avid Eyes
Was Shane Sparks the hip-hop coach last week too? That guy is spay-shul. He worked on "You Got Served," which if you haven't seen it is an utter craptasm of a movie with the maddest, wildest, most laws-of-physics-defying dance scenes in the history of ever. Totally worth checking out, as long as you fast forward through everything that is not dancing.


Sandra and Jonnis, yep I already said goodbye to you last week. Live long and prosper.


I think the dancers learned the "don't talk back" lesson from last week because they were kissing ass like crazy.


Craig should be headlining musical revues at Disney World. He's just got that look and that style.


"The Mia Michaels Dance Troupe's matching costumes look like they were recycled from a some other production."

The Flintstones?


Jonnis is a turd. He seems to think his dancing is perfect and all constructive criticism is wrong. I watched his couples dance from last week for a second time. Not only was he lacking smoothness when locking arms with his partner and twisting in and out. But he was doing that rubberbandy, scarecrow move, undulating his torso when he should have been holding himself upright. He kept moving his pelvis as far as possible from Melissa. Freudian? Good riddence.

I agree with whoever said it last week that the last minute comments about the people who should be worried about elimination are actually intended to get those people extra votes.


I also have not been a Kamilah fan but her routine last night was amazing and I thought it was because she stopped trying to be The Sexy and just danced and she's good.

I was thinking why oh why didn’t' Sandra do that tap routine instead of tapping cheerleader on crack routine (or whatever Nigel called it)…she may still be here if she had.


I watched the episode in high definition. Nick had some chest hair going on. I think he forgot to shave and/or wax. I personally don't like chest stubble (it hurts!), so either have chest hair or don't.


I'll miss Jonnis's hair.

I wish Nigel would pull his head out of his ass. Serious hate building here.

I really wish they'd quit trying to manufacture drama. I HATE all the uncomfortable questions they force Sanchez to spring on the dancers. "Would you like to bitch out the judges for what they just said?" (Well that's what it amounts to.) Or, "Do you think you pulled it off?" Note to Nigel: Your audience's IQ is well over 60. Someone needs to backhand the ESL writers (or Sanchez, if she ad-libbed) for this, preceding Sandra's retrospective: "....sharing your journey to America."

It's probably the old fogey in me but I detest seeing guys wearing their ball caps backwards. Especially adult men. (I'm looking at you, Brian.) To me, it's like waving a sign that says, "Hi! I'm the village idiot!"


"After being so excited about tonight's show for the past week, I'm now totally irritated that I tuned in to see practically the same couples dancing practically the same styles as last week."

Wordy McWord with a side of spicy Word sauce. What an unbelievable oversight to not have prevented that. Can't help ratings either. Nigel must have been so busy fabricating bullshit drama, he forgot to actually produce the show.

I officially love Brian, he's the only one of the lot who can deliver criticism constructively. Still can't decide if Dan is comedy gold or just a conceited jackass. In the meantime, I'll admit it, I thought the judges were spot on for most of tonight, and Dan's "quick step is sucking the life out of me" comment had me rolling. And Dan's comment is about Ryan's HAIR? *Throws rocks at Dan's head, they bounce back.*


"I really hate that Mia Michaels and her gooey, liquid, granola, huggy dancing. She reminds me of somebody's mother who always wants to hug you when you come over and talk about crystals and yogurt and loving your own lumpy body."

I really imagine her as those hippie ladies that's always having affairs with her young proteges.


Actually, I would love to see [Blake & Snow together], if only for trainwreck value. I'm not sure two egos that big can fit on the same stage. And will the cameras explode from that much whoring? Not to mention the diva-tastic rehearsals. Fox Network, hear my prayers!


Devon Rose
I thought their last performances were the worst of the bunch. Although, I do have to give Craig points for doing his breath, "six-pack," breath, "six-pack" repetitions when he was talking to Lauren. Heh!


Screw this male/female partner thing. If Blake & Artem danced that lyrical piece together, it would have been the most beautiful thing on this show.

Blake is just so beautiful and captivating to watch. And Artem, wow, he just brought this masculine sensuality and such depth of emotion, it really elevated their performance.

What is with the smiling with Destini & Ashle? Destini is worse because her smile is like pageant smile. Ashle is lucky her hair distracted from her facial expressions because she would also start smiling at inappropiate times. And even luckier Artem was carrying the emotional center-piece of their program.

I was cracking up when Mia was telling Ashle to approach the touch like a human not a dancer. It sounds kooky but it is so true. That is exactly why I was not feeling Destini and Ashle as much. I takes a lot of artisty to pull off Mia's pieces, otherwise it does look like a bunch of pretty flopping.

There 'ya go, Artem & Blake are my ideal dance couple.

Craig's pop-lock was kinda sad. Little Melody had more toughness in her and she got the technique much better. His chest-locking looked like Richard Simmons puffing his chest in his crazy workouts -- 'I must, I must increase my bust', lol.

I used to liked Craig's smile when I thought there was just sweetness behind it. Last night there was sneering and arrogance behind it, stupid grin. And really, the excess smiling on this show, grrr argh! It's like 'Oooh, smile for the camera, look pretty!' even if in the middle of an emotive or edgy piece.


Do we really care what Marie Osmond thinks about hip-hop?
Do we care what hip-hop judge boys think of any ballroom dances?
And there's no Muppet dance that Nigel can adequately judge?


While I'm griping, can we get also get a sewing kit and some extra buttons backstage and put Lauren Sanchez to work with a needle? Sheesh, wear a shirt or don't, but this half-on, half-off flapping shit is just distracting. That includes you, Melody.


The camera people really need to get whacked upside the head. During the auditions they were falling asleep so that people were leaping across the stage and the audience was seeing dead space. Tonight during the quickstep, they insisted on showing Nick and Michelle from the calf up for most of the routine. Then during Nick's solo they thought they should zoom in on his foot? While he was doing a pirouette?

I heart you, blue artemis! I would love to hear Brian say to Blake, "You're an amazing dancer, and you're a great choreographer, but as a boyfriend... you kinda suck."

I'd be more okay with the booing if they'd at least let the judges finish what they are saying first. Sometimes the judges start out sounding negative but end up being positive, as in, "I didn't think it was your best," BOOOOOO!, "but you really stepped up and delivered."


"Clearly, the same people voting for him are the same dumbasses booing every negative comment by the judges. I'm so sick of that already."

The booing grates. As soon as a judge says, "You were lacking--" the crowd jumps in with "Booooooo!!!" I mean, what the hell does the crowd expect after each performance? For the judges to say "That was the bestest dance ever. Oh my God! You two were awesome!!! You should have my job!"


And what was with the half-hour elimination sobfest to start the show? Good grief! Ashle was crying like her grandmother just got gangraped by a motorcycle gang.
Yo, Ashle...they're your competitors. You should be glad they're getting the boot.

Hated to see Sandra leave. She brought the pretty. The rest of the girls are borderline fugly.

And someone please tell all the fanboys and fangirls in the audience to STFU!

Did Snow lose her eyebrows as a result of the Chernobyl accident?


Okay, number one annoyance tonight was the audience (can they shut the goddamn fucking hell up for ONE MINUTE and let the judges speak? They are just so... HATE.) That annoyance followed closely by the way the show is set up. I agree with Bentley that voting an entire couple off is just retarded, as is choosing partners/styles via a hat. At least they're naming all the songs now.

When Judge Dan uses the word "ridiculous" as a compliment, I get a little tingle. I love Dan.

"Snow kind of reminds me of Maya Rudolph doing Donatella Versace."
Oh my fucking god, YES. THANK YOU. I knew she reminded me of someone, and that's exactly who I was thinking of!


Ghost Dog
Although I would have laughed my ass off if the guys had tuxes with no shirts on underneath, since they seem to take their shirts off at the first available opportunity.


I thought Snow looked very elegant and classy without all her little swingies flying around her waist.


*Note to Brian: Dahlink, the " 'do rag/cap" thing? Must stop. Now. Ok, you're all street and hardcore. Fine, whatever,


Now we know why Paula cancelled her appearance. Mia stole all her drugs.
I could swear the audience was segregated. Blond pre-teen LA girls front center; brunettes with ironed hair stage left; middle aged ladies in the upper tier; and - if you squinted you could see them - coloured folk in the back row. Not many men anywhere.

I agree that the song titles might have been a shout-out to TWoP. If so, let's try again: Nigel - fire the audience. The booing served no purpose. They can boo Simon Paula and Theodore all they want - their comments are generally insipid. These judges actually offer critiques - I'd like to hear them.

In fact, I think you should go all out on the fabulous and stock the audience with West Hollywood boys.

And Jonnis "I will never be controlled" just doesn't get it. GO ahead and dance free. Five years from now he'll be following Phish cover bands around the country.

SALSA: Are the judges being ordered to pimp Ryan? Is Nigel holding their lovers [or miniature dogs] hostage? Because that was not good. All I know about Latin dance is this: Salsa is sexy. And that was not sexy. That was flat. You could see them thinking about each move.

Yeah, Craig is a bit precocious, but I love his smile. And his lips are all right. I'm not looking just at his nipples. I swear I'm not. I like that he took a risk with has dance-out; the others were a bit safe.


Actually, Craig looks a little like Annette Funicello (in the face, not the torso).

This is who I think Craig looks like.

Craig look alike

My ten year old daughter’s take the final dances.
Snow: Her skirt is doing all the work.
Melody: She’s not dancing, she’s just walking around being sexy.
Nick: He’s a ballerina!

Mia's style to me is more modern than lyrical, but again take away the monk climbing out of a dumpster costumes, change the music, and it could be performed by a ballet company (not all ballet is Sleeping Beauty/Giselle in tutus!).


I guess Destini and Blake's performance was good, but I couldn't tell, because I was so distracted by those heinous costumes they were wearing. Jeebus! Did they go dumpster diving for those?


"And Jonnis "I will never be controlled" just doesn't get it. GO ahead and dance free. Five years from now he'll be following Phish cover bands around the country."

Bwaaaahhh!! Maybe the Bonnaroo Festival needs backup dancers? He's got the jamband twirl down cold. Oh yeah and Jonnis, there's a difference between dancing all wild and free and looking like a scarecrow with epilepsy.


La Boheme
I've liked Big Poppa from the very beginning but I really think it's time for him to go, for his own sake. His story was (is) very moving and I was really proud of him for making it so far and keeping up with dancers with more training. I agree with the judges who said that he seemed to disappear for a while there. I think he was realising how out of his element he was and it freaked him out. But now that he's given a solid performace with Kamillah, as well as the validation of knowing that he was the top vote getter last week, it would be best if he were out of the competition. It seems like a backlash is beginning and the person who is going to suffer the most is Allan. He has no control over Nigel and his insistence on playing the 'Big Poppa pity card'. Nigel is using Allan for his own selfish ends but it's Allan who is going to pay the price as more talented dancers leave before he does and when he is forced to do a dance that is so far beyond him that he completely humiliates himself. For the weeks of enjoyment Allan has given me, I would like him to leave on a high note so that he can capitalize on his time on this show and do what's best for HIM. I'm sure that there are plenty of sad stories among the other contestants. Hell, they're dancers and that's a tough life. Pick on someone else and let Alan exit with some dignity intact.

I'm hoping that Jamile outlasts Craig because I'm a bit tired of his perma-grin and I don't think he adds anything to the show. We have Blake and Nick who are both more talented and much better looking than Craig. I also think that he could give Blake a run for his money in the arrogance department. He wasn't pretending to be shocked when he was picked for the bottom 6, he WAS shocked. Neither he or Melody are as good as they think they are and with Craig gone Melody would definitely have to step it up.



Coach Mia reminds me of one of the choreographers from Cirque du Soleil's "The Fire Within." "You are a sexually mature butterfly... fighting to break out of your coccoon of conformity. Unicorns! Unicorns! My little pony!"


Craig is now getting on my nerves. His face and bod seem to come from two totally different places. His face is has this goofy, unsexy, chimpanzee look; while his body, especially that 8-pack, are unbelievable.

I just remembered where I've seen [Mia's choreography dancer] costumes. The Hara Krishnas I used to see soliciting in the airport wore the same flowing peach-colored outfits.


FINE. I'm the only person who HATES Melody. With a passion. Okay. I'll ride that train all by my damn self . She's too cutesy- even during an Etta James (!) striptease with requisite arabesque, she was on some dance studio recital s***- no heat, with her cutesy, s***-eating-grin-y self. I guarantee if you'd seen Kamilah do it, or even Destini- totally different.

and Ballroom Dance Mary? shutthehellup.

and TRL audience? shutthehellup.


First off let me say, if Sandra had done her tap routine exactly as she did this evening there is no way she would have gone home that was great.

As individuals, Snow worked the hell out of that skirt but didn't do much else.

Nick was fantastic. For get all the Blake love, this kid has such power and presence when he dances.

When Ashle leans back against Artem with her leg up it's like looking at her support panty hose. It was completely unattractive and drew your attention right to this girls crotch. Can we please fire the fashion person for this show??? This is not the first truly horrible outfit we've seen.


"Hi, my name is Lauren Sanchez and these are my breasts. The right one is a Taurus and the left one is a Leo. Go prepare to dance.

As your reward for escaping the dance purgatory of this show, we won't incite the mindless mallrats in our studio audience to count down to liftoff as you perform your final routine.


Nite System
Neighbor Katy on Nick's ending solo: "This show is so gay! I mean that in a good way ... um, Nick and Clay Aiken should date!"


I was cracking up when Mia was telling Ashle to approach the touch like a human not a dancer. It sounds kooky but it is so true. That is exactly why I was not feeling Destini and Ashle as much. It takes a lot of artisty to pull off Mia's pieces, otherwise it does look like a bunch of pretty flopping.

Jonnis' goodbye speech was sad, but I'm glad he's gone. I've seen guys moving like that in my neighborhood, but they are all homeless and speaking in tongues.

Allan didn't change his first impression that much for me this week, except that he opened his mouth a lot during his performance...perhaps to gasp for air? He needs to learn to squeeze a little when slapping his fine partner's ass because the booty slap was so quick and abbreviated that it looked like he was testing the heat on the bottom of a frying pan. Also, I actually gasped in awe when I saw a new river of sweat forming out of swelling tributaries running across his forehead and upper lip. It was like watching the Mississippi rising in time lapse photography. Fascinating.


I feel a little bad about Jonnis. He seems so young and clueless, but I liked him.


"And for whatever reason Craig just bugs me."

Oh totally!! He's got a goofy face and he just screams "star of the local dance school." He is totally a better Six Flags Revue dancer. He should grow out his hair or something. 7/8 of Jonnis' appeal was his pretty hair.

"As individuals, Snow worked the hell out of that skirt but didn't do much else."

" ...and the Emmy award for best performance for 10 yards of fabric in a reality show goes to...." How true.


Good lord, Lauren Sanchez needs to go away. She looks like a shark with her weird ass huge plastic smile and horrible lips that are folded under somehow. Yuck, yuck, yuck. She has no interview skills whatsoever. (I don't expect her to be Babwa Walters, but come on...a third grader could do better than Lauren)

"Go prepare to dance.
Now please dance for us. "

I'm so glad I'm not the only one confused by this. When Lauren first said "Get ready to dance", I got ready to change channels, because I assumed the person would be going backstage to change clothes or something, and they'd go to commercial. When they walked exactly ten feet away, I was like WTF? How useless.


Hi, I'm delurking here, because I LOVE this show. I hope they make another one after this. It's everything I ever wanted in a show, well except maybe for all the crazy padding--seriously, that half an hour results show could be 5 minutes long. They need to start giving more variety to the music though. How many black eyed peas songs can they dance to, really? Including the opening credits song!


Pushy Galore
Snow, why do I like you now when I once despised you? Is it because you are the only one of the girls who is not completely generic in my mind? Is it your Bond girl Iron Curtain cool during the stupid quickstep? Or because you reminded me of Hedwig during the elimination show?

Judge Mary, who stole your lips? Your Skeletor choppers are scary.

Mia Michaels, why did you raid the Hare Krishnas' dumpster for your lyrical jazz constumes?

Judge Dan, why do I love thee so damn much? Is it your cute scratchy voice or your wanton use of polysyllabic words? Will you please make nice with Nigel so he will let you be a judge on American Idol?


Really? I don't get an arrogant vibe from Craig. He's been hiding it well but it's there. He's made little comments here and there "I find it funny when Melody and I mess up, because we're not used to making mistakes" and telling US magazine "I don't have many weaknesses"...granted, I don't find anything wrong with saying things like that, but had it been Blake some people would be reaming him for it. Then if you watched tonight, he had this "how dare you" look on his face and a "you've gotta be kidding me" smile when the judges were criticizing him. I can just tell he has a lot of cockiness, which is fine, but it annoys me because I think he's really fake. Just be out there with it.

"Judge Mary, who stole your lips?"

Seriously. The woman has NO top lip!


Word. Allen was so relentlessy, transparently pimped by the judges it was ridiculous. Let's see him get lyrical or quick step next week and crush his partner.

Craig is Blake, only without the asshole. America will not send him home yet. Jamile is probably hosed.

Is it me or does Nigel look like the love child of Eric Idle and Cy Curnin, the lead singer of The Fixx?

I still say its a tossup as to which of them [Janice Dickenson and Lauren Sanchez] has had more work done. This host has that botox induced Joker smile which is just plain creepy.


Jonnis: see ya. I just don't like your style. Your talented, and I think you are much better than the judges give you credit for, but you are just not right for our band...err...this show.


According to someone who went to a taping, the audience is cued to act like assholes.

And finally, I vote that there should be a pirouette/spinning/twirling whatever contest between Blake and Nick to see who can do the most before falling on their ass. And obviously it would be done shirtless.


[ballroom Mary] reminds me of a cracked out Marie Osmond.


Wow, Craig is a major-league hottie.
AND my he is so my new boyfriend! (Call me, Craig!)


I felt like the judges took a collective shuttle off Planet Reality


I'm in loooooove with Artem :) He's so dweamy :) I also like that he's not afraid to cry in public.

Here's a really hot (IMO) pic of Artem :)

Mia is SO my high school choir director- very granola eating, crystal loving, New Age-ish, love everyone, let's sit on a mat and meditate hippie. I LOVE her.

"Nick and Clay Aiken should date!"


*wipes keyboard*

Hells.Yes. The Click would be SO hot. Two cute, funny, dorky, talented guys.

I love this show and the pretty it brings.


It struck me that the difference between Artem and Blake in the lyrical dances is that when Artem is connecting with his partner, it's all about the connection. When it's Blake, it seems to be more about "hey everyone, look at me connecting with my partner!" Does that make sense to anyone else?

I was also amused that camera-whoring (i.e., Snow) is now considered a good thing!

And before I forget, I figured out who ballroom Mary reminds me of -- Shirley Temple Black! (As opposed to when she was Shirley Temple and still had blonde hair.)



You just know there's sign up sheets on the bulletin board at every fly-by-night strip mall dance academy in SoCal and they're hauling them in by the busload. If they stayed on an audience shot for more than a millisecond, I'm sure every tenth face would be an fortyish bleached blonde named Kay-Marie with crepey cleavage and an over-abundance of Diamonique.


Storm Shadow
Best part of the show last night: All of the many lifts Ryan performed during his routine. Magnificent.


I'm still voting for Nick and Melody as a shout-out to the heads from the yay area. Petty and immature? Yah, okay, maybe.


We have a running joke about the host being Janice Dickenson. Glad to see others see this as well.
Also get rid of the host, the judges, and especially the audience. Screaming teens need not apply.


Sorry Floppin' Jon is gone. I liked him.

Craig reminds me of Adrian Zmed back in the day. Solid Gold! (Zmed2, Zmed3)

The second Flinstone couple were very good also. [Mia's choreography couple]

The dance teacher's giant choppers seriously BUG! me. I find myself echoing Nigel's comments. He so wants to be as big as Simon Cowell.

Keep on hoofin' Kamilah, Snow, Blake, Artem. Love you guys.
You too Jonnis, wherever you are.

Yes! Yes! Can't stand it. One by one, I want all the grinning idiots with oversized teeth Gone! Tap Dance Kid - check. Craig or Michelle - next. Hopefuly both. Can we do anything about Judge Marie Osmond Shirley Temple Black Skeltor Mr Ed? Hate. Get a top lip.

Hey, Lauren Sanchez - Catherine Zeta Jones is thinking bout suing you for botching up the likeness of her face.



Yup, couldn't have said it better myself. I have a bigger dislike for spoiled platinum blonde teenagers. Besides what do they know about dancing. They're idea of dancing is grinding with horny 12 yr old boys with semi hard ons and titty grinding with her best friend to get shock value from high school boys.

And that salsa? Please. I used to dance at a salsa club and some couples were so hot to watch it MADE you want to dance, this last pair (their names escape me) made me just want to sit on the couch and continue eating dinner.


Oh. My. Damn. Artem is beautiful! My roommate and I have decided we will pay him to live in our apartment and dance our towels to us, spin and help us cook, or just sitting around shirtless eating corn nuts. We don't care. He is just amazing. All broody and sexy and ROWWWRRRrrr (sorry, ahem). He reminds me sort of Goran Visjinic (Luka from ER) in some of his expressions. So freaking passionate. His wife is a lucky woman. Damn.

Dude if they had guys paired.. that would be hot. Artem and Shirtless Boy Wonder in jeans (get two of the guys confused) would be awesome together.

Oh and does anyone else go "shimmy shimmy shimmy" when it comes back from commercial or goes to commercial? Just me? Ok....