It's..... The happiest blog on earth


On "Lost," Michael Emerson plays Ben, the creepy leader of "The Others," a cultish community on the far side of the island. But I just found that he played a minister in The Laramie Project. Remind me never to go to that church...



Remember: there's only 32 more episodes left of Lost.



"Goodbye, Columbus" was a 1969 movie based on the novella by Philip Roth. But today I made an interesting discovery on the web — the secret original lyrics for its theme song!

The soundtrack's liner notes contain an interesting clue. A rejected first version of the song was later included on their next album — but with its title changed to "Goodbye, Forever!"

"The lyrics are about what was going on in the movie," admits Jim Yester, the band's vocalist. "...if you listen to the lyrics, it's about the relationship between Richard Benjamin and Ali MacGraw."

Needless to say, this piqued my curiosity, so I tracked down the secret original lyrics on the web. They've been transcribed by exactly no one — but they're hidden on the band's own web page. They'd apparently used white letters on a white background — but unfortunately, even that web page has also vanished from the web.

But Google saved a copy in their cache.

Not just another pretty face, but more than naked. Not just another stupid race where no one makes it.
She laid more that her reputation on the line, and tried to fake it. He walked in and begged for less in time, and he couldn't take it Goodbye forever, goodbye forever, goodbye.
Who paints the pictures for the golden daughter's blind eyes? Who makes the snow fall for the aging father's white lies?
She laid more that her reputation on the line, and tried to fake it. He walked in and begged for less in time, and couldn't take it. Goodbye forever, goodbye forever, goodbye. Goodbye forever. Goodbye forever. Goodbye...
Even then, there was one final mystery. The Association's web site had deleted the song's most suggestive lyric, its second-to-last line. It could be an innocent mis-transcription — or a cover-up of their harsh assessment of Ali McGraw's character.

There was only one thing to do. I tracked down my own vinyl copy of the album, and located its eleventh track. Click here to listen to the forbidden lyric! And here it is, for the first time on the internet...

Not just another pretty bottom, but a genuine blue movie.
Not just another pretty bottom, but a genuine cheap groovy.


In alt.gathering.rainbow, one hipster pauses to remember The Lawrence Welk Show.

Maybe it's because Life has gotten a little insane lately (o.k. A LOT insane), but I actually felt the tender pang of nostalgia while watching these clips. I even felt warm and fuzzy during "Hey Jude"

Pass the Geritol ....



Things I learned today:

"Bye-bye" is spelled with a hyphen.

So if you're ever transcribing what a stewardess says...



And now, a short speech from William Faulkner's The Town (as delivered by Eula Varner Snopes).

"If you are a man, you can lie unconscious in the gutter bleeding and with most of your teeth knocked out and somebody can come and take your pocketbook and you can wake up and wash the blood off and it's all right; you can always get some more teeth and even another pocketbook sooner or later. But you can't stand meekly with your head bowed and no blood and all your teeth too while somebody takes your pocketbook because even though you might face the friends who love you afterward you can never face the strangers that never heard of you before."

Eula also appears in William Faulkner's The Hamlet



The Onion weighs in on Super Bowl XLII.

The New England Patriots' season was perfect...but only for people who wanted to see them lose in the biggest possible way.



Today's great moment in recent comic book dialogue comes from The Amazing Spider-Man, #550.
The Blue Shield: Stand down! I'm authorized to use force!

Spider-Man: The Blue Shield, right? It's good to see you. My health insurance premiums have been out of control lately...



ABC created a new web page for Lost fans. It tells you what Sawyer's nickname would be for you.

I came out as "Sugarpop."



Boy, isn't Lost great this season?

And while we're at it, here's an interesting review of Lost's third season.



There's some surprisingly poignant tips in this article on creative ways to ask for a date.

In high school I idolized a senior who gave me some great advice. "Don't use the word date." It adds pressure and awkwardness - for both the person asking and the person being asked!

And it ultimately concludes that all dating tips are really just a substitute for good old-fashioned self confidence.

A lot of "tricks" for asking for a date succeed not because of the trick itself, but because it gives you the confidence to ask for the date in the first place!

Armed with a plan, you're ready to give the conversation your best shot - and someday you'll realize that it's you, yourself, which is your best argument for a chance to get to know each other.



I know why Ben's afraid. The people on the boat are affiliated with the original Dharma project -- all the people that Ben helped kill. And the last thing he wants is for them to catch up to him.

Maybe the reason Ben is obsessed with pregnancy research is he wants to spawn a new generation of people to guard the island -- without leaving it.

I've been pondering this new set of bad people -- the other Others -- who apparently have the power to create a fake plane crash to stop people looking for survivors.

My first thought was Ben's group also has a lot of power -- submarines, underwater radio jamming stations, and the power to gather information about all the plane crash victims. But maybe they inherited that technology from the previous Dharma group on the Island. And all Ben's group really has going for them is being very very devious -- but in low-tech ways like sending Nathan to infiltrate the crash survivor's beach camp.

We'll see.


Here's four quotes from Lost I jotted down as being especially memorable.
Ben:"Perhaps I overreacted." (So that's why he tried to have Carl brainwashed...)

Rousseau's first words to her daughter: "Help me tie him up." (That seemed weird at first -- but after everything Alex has been through, that may have been exactly the right thing to say.)

Sawyer:"That's for taking the kid off the raft." (That's how Season 1 ended. I think Sawyer even warned Tom in Season 2 that "This ain't over." Maybe the writers wanted to start making up for all the bad things they've thrown at the characters since Season 1.)

Hurley with the van -- I know that's not really a quote. But that was a wonderful moment! If they ever have a retrospective of great Lost moments, that will definitely be in there!


Here's my prediction about Lost. The last episode will involve them realizing that they have to "do it over again" to get it right. And the last shot is.... Jack opening his eye on the beach again after the original plane crash from Season One.

When the series is shown in re-runs, they could subtly alter the syndicated version to imply it's a new, second time through the same events. (Or release a special DVD box edition where the deleted scenes are part of this second continuum...!)


Of course I watched the season finale of Lost. I came up with my own set of questions....
  • Who's funeral was it where nobody came?
  • Is eyepatch Mikahil re-living multiple lives -- like Desmond?
  • Who's waiting for Kate? Is it Sawyer -- or is she conning a new husband?
  • Who are these bad people on the boat. The other others?
  • Why exactly was the Pearl Station receiving video transmissions from Penny?
I think the boat people want the power of the island. They created a fake plane crash so no one would look for the survivors. That's why Ben wanted Mikhail to nab Naomi's radio -- and maybe why Ben told everyone the Pearl station was flooded. We've got a while until we find out. There won't be a new episode until February of 2008.

Oh, and Charlie really should've put on the diving gear before messing with the button under the yellow blinking light.



I love lists. They're intense, they're simple, and they share the best of the best. At our webzine 10 Zen Monkeys, we've run several lists collecting the "top five" video clips. Here are five of my favorites.
  • Top Five Muppet Videos. "Star Wars Muppets" featured Miss Piggy and Gonzo mingling with the real R2D2, Luke Skywalker, and Chewbacca. Also included: Elmo singing a surprisingly good version of "Slide" with the Goo-Goo Dolls.

    I got to watch a lot of muppet clips while pulling this together. It made me realize that Jim Henson had an amazing career -- and, that there are lots of people who love the muppets!

  • Top 5 Sexiest Apple Videos. People are passionate about Apple computers. Apparently, they sometimes express that passion with a sexy online video. Can you really combine these two impulses in a single visual medium? To explore the answer to that question, we created this list of the 5 Sexiest Apple Videos. (My favorite is the guy iChatting with four sexy women at the same time!)

  • Top 5 'Animal vs. Reporter' Videos. It's an age-old struggle: the authoritative versus the primitive. And in these videos, the primitive wins every time. Pay special attention to that worker at the animal shelter who's trying to get you to adopt Pinky the Cat. He's about to learn that Pinky the Cat really hates being on a leash -- and when the claws come out, he's in for a very nasty surprise.

  • 5 Lamest Charlie Brown cartoons. I love Charlie Brown -- but his gentle sincerity sometimes led him in strange directions. Like the time Snoopy became the disco-dancing "Flashbeagle." Or the time Linus visited battlefields from World War II. Or the time Charlie Brown appeared in a brochure for Metropolitan insurance called "Surviving the Loss of a Loved One."

    This is another collection that makes you recognize an amazing career. As a young man Charles M. Schulz served in World War II -- and thirty years later, he was able to tapped his experiences for an animated cartoon.

  • The 5 Faces of Bush. The media tells secret stories. That's not a conspiracy theory; it's a conclusion we reached after reviewing photos selected for their articles about George Bush.

    Blogger Josh Marshall first noticed the pattern, and wondered if news editors were signalling a change in tone -- and possible changes to come. As Bush's team presented pessimistic findings from the Iraq Study Group, a series of photographs were taken. But were they cropped in different ways, making Bush look even more worried, even more nervous, or disturbingly un-serious?

George Bush doesn't have anything in common with Charlie Brown or the Muppets -- except this: They all showed us how fun it was to pull together our own Top 5 lists!



And even if you've never heard of Michael Crook, you'll be surprised what he's up to now...



Jim Gerlach isn't going to like this! :)



Lost - my theory about what's happening on the island.
  • That 70s commune experiment released some kind of virus onto the island that makes people strong and aggressive.

  • The people who crashed on the other side of the island became violent and killed each other. That's why the survivors are so paranoid about Sawyer, Jin and Michael.

  • That's why Danielle said "Watch your people closely."

  • Ethan and "The Others" are actually some leftover from that 70s reserach team. They want Walt (or Danielle's baby) because a young body would be infection-free, and would offer some biotherapeutic research benefit.

  • The monster (and shark) were devices to keep people away from the infected areas. (Which is also why it says quarantine on the inside of the hatch door.)



On May 29, TV Guide offered their "SNEAK PEEK of Next Season" for the TV show Lost.
Season 2 Secret No. 3 Expect to some new faces.
Dr. Arzt (Daniel Roebuck), the high school physics teacher and resident explosives expert who first appeared in the May 11 episode, will be back.
Boy, I'd like to see how they pull that off!


One last theory on Lost.

I've heard the show's producers told the press they were going to introduce a new character at the end of the first season - and that he would be a major part of the second season.


We all know how that came out. Artz was a red herring. (Or maybe a red shirt.) Not twenty minutes into the season finale, he had an unfortunate encounter with a stick of dynamite. ("This is messed up," says Hurley.)

Here's why I think that's important. In the season finale Sun asks "Are we being punished for what we've done?" Other have already suggested that theory - that the island is some kind of after-life limbo where past sins are confronted. On a primetime special, the show's producers were specifically asked: are the castaways in Purgatory?

No, the producers answered.

And Arzt is going to be a major character....

Interestingly, in an earlier episode Boone gave a whole speech about the red shirts on Star Trek...


Craig's List is a terrible place to look for a job.

Every job listing gets hundreds of responses - so your odds of even hearing back are almost zero.

And the few employers I've actually made contact with through Craig's List all turned out to be these small-department fiefdoms where the person doing the hiring had no understanding of the hiring process.

Basically, they're the kind of flakes who do their hiring through Craig's List.


Good Morning America showed a scene Thursday that was cut from the season finale of Lost.

(Danielle is seen sucking the yolk out of an egg. Charlie and Claire watch her from down the beach.)

CHARLIE: She's a nutter. A couple of sandwiches short of a picnic. She tried to blow my head off in the bloody jungle with no reason whatsoever. She hears whispers. That doesn't mean anything, Claire. Whispers.

CLAIRE: When Ethan took me - however I got away - I knew they'd be back.

CHARLIE: Is that why you've not named the baby?

That explains why Claire later named the baby as soon as she realized Charlie was going to rescue it.

I still think they're in purgatory.

Maybe the hatch's ladder just leads down, down, forever.



Is the answer to the mystery of Lost....ghosts?

How else to explain the weird black cloud after Jack threw dynamite down the monster's hole?

And that strange animated special effect when Jack looked out into the jungle. And where else could "the others" have come from? If they're just aging castaways - won't that be kind of a let-down?


I've been trying to guess the secret of Lost. Is there a pattern to why all the characters were drawn to the island?

One theory: They've all been around dead people.

  • Jack in the operating room
  • Sawyer and his father
  • Boone ("Teresa falls down the stairs")
  • Sayid in the war
  • Hurley's grandfather
  • Walt's mother
  • Kate and her lover
And the others did seriously bad things.
  • Jin and his extortion
  • Charlie betraying his lover
  • Shannon and her embezzlement
I don't have any explanation for Claire, Locke, or Boone. But maybe the island attracts, not the guilty, but the evil. Like drug-runners dressed as priests. Or the crew of that slave ship. Hence, "the dark territory."

Wherever "the others" came from, they were certainly evil enough to steal Danielle's baby and kidnap Michael's son...

Some people are floating the theory that the island is purgatory. Sun even said in tonight's episode: Do you think we are being punished. I've heard that the creators of the show denied that explanation as too simple. But maybe they were trying to throw everyone off the track...



I did a search on the old email address,

Here's the other match for



Boy, those guys are SEO, Inc sure are jerks.



I tried researching Anna Ayala, the woman who recently sued Wendy's for contaminating her chili.

I learned that it's a fairly common name. It belongs to a drunk-driver in New York, a psychology student in Utah, a celebrity's caretaker in Los Angeles, and, ironically, a soup kitchen assistant.

Also, in San Bernadino an Anna Ayala is the parent of a volleyball player, and in Texas she's offering moral support to - er, some guy with a blog.

The soup kitchen assistant met Hillary Clinton .




"The equipment in ventriloquist dummies is alot like the prototype of the artificial heart I designed."

That's the gist of just one amazing facet in the life of ventriloquist Paul Winchell -- who, yes, designed the first prototype for an artificial heart.

He was also the voice of Tigger.



The author of "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" is threatening a blogger.

Why? Because the blogger questioned the legitimacy of the author's PhD -- which does appear to have come from a non-accredited college in California in the early 80s.

I wonder what planet his lawyer is from?



Disney consumer products have discontinued a 700-pound statue of Mickey Mouse dressed as Janet Jackson. (Click the link for a picture...)

Wait a minute -- Mickey Mouse is a cross-dresser?!



"And you folks were worried about terrorists. Meet the real enemy: Janet's Boob."
Sunday 140 million viewers watched as Justin Timberlake ripped off Janet Jackson's breast plate. These photos capture the Super Bowl-shocker as the two singers performed their MTV-produced half-time show. And the world press was quick to react...
"Oooops! Janet Jackson flashes 140 million!" --WorldNet Daily

"Janet hangs out with Justin"--Sydney Herald

"Sorry for the boob, says CBS." --Sydney Herald

"Oh you nasty boy! Janet Jackson glares at Justin Timberlake..." --(Sports Illustrated photo caption)



Al Franken will host a live, 3-hour radio show.

He told reporters he'll call Rush Limbaugh and ask him for advice.

"I'm interested in doing what I can to affect this election," Franken said. "I've been thinking about what's the best use of my energies — I hope this is it."


Ladies and gentlemen...

Bobby Badfingers!

Thanks to Mat for the link.



A political blogger is bashing President Bush's plans for the space program. Then he pauses, fondly remembering childhood-favorite TV shows set in outer space.

The memories are lovingly documented with pictures, and then a link to mp3s of the Space: 1999 theme. (Including one by Ennio Morricone!)

He points out that on Space: 1999, stored nuclear materials blasted the moon -- and its moon colony -- out of orbit.


The war in Iraq was a conquest for oil "dressed up as a crusade for Western life and liberty..." by "a clique of war-hungry Judeo-Christian geopolitical fantasists who hijacked the media and exploited America's post-9/11 psychopathy."

Wait -- that's just a character in John Le Carre's new spy novel, "Absolute Friends." The New York Times runs through the highlights of Europe's perrenial criticism of America.



There's The Matrix -- and then there's...

The Meatrix.

My friend Mike found this on Cal Pundit.


"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."

Inspirational words from a web site called Punx for Dean.

The quote is usually attributed to: Mohandis K. Gandhi.

Link borrowed from Mat's "sidebar blog," LinkyDink.



The long-awaited answers to my 2003 movie quiz....

Ben Affleck, talking to the treacherous clone of his girlfriend.

American Splendor
Young Harvey Pekar, trick-or-treating as himself at the beginning....

Charlie's Angels II
Cameron Diaz, taunting Demi Moore at gunpoint, as Lucy Lui and Drew Barrymore come to save her.

Shattered Glass
The New Republic's editor, realizing he's been snowed by Stephen Glass.

Matrix III
Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) begins the final showdown with Neo (Keanu Reeves).



Time for Destiny-land's Year in Review. All these quotes are from movies I saw in 2003. Can you identify the movies?

"What's my favorite baseball team?"
"Who cares?"


"I ain't no superhero, lady. I'm just a kid from the neighborhood."


"I have something that you'll never have."
"What's that?"


"He handed us fiction after fiction. And we printed it as fact. Because we found him entertaining. That is indefensible."


"Mr. Anderson. Welcome back. We've missed you."
"It ends tonight."


On New Year's Day at the local multi-screen cinePlex, their loudspeakers were playing...

The First Noel.

On January 1?

Shouldn't that be the last Noel?



"Man, this music sucks."

Watching Mystic River, I was appalled by the music. Pointless single notes on a synthesizer. Or, worse -- a synthesizer and oboe!

Who did director Clint Eastwood owe a favor to, I'm thinking to myself? And then in the closing credits, I see the answer.

Music by....
Clint Eastwood.

Well, that explains it.

By the way, I left hating the movie, too -- specifically because of its ending. It's ambiguity left me wondering if this was another run through Clint Eastwood's whole "Sometimes murder is okay" theme.



I love the kittens playing punk rock video. Now their creator has a new music video -- two monkeys singing "I bought the wrong bananas."

Apparently he's got his own TV show on Britain's Channel Four now. Other experimental works include some techno Nazi kittens and a pair of hedgehogs singing acapella a song of cryptic anatomical vulgarities


"...wouldn't be nobody git up an' feed the chickens! Hee-hee... ever'body jest lay in bed! Jest lay in bed till they ready to git up! Sho', you take a man high on good gage, he got no use for they ole bull-crap, 'cause he done see right through there. Shoot, he lookin' right down into his ver' soul!"

"I ain't never heard nobody talk so dang crazy, C.K."

"Well, you young, boy -- you goin' hear plenty crazy talk 'fore you is a growed man."

Terry Southern
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes, 1967


Michael Lund, world champion skier. He won the ballet freestyle competition in 1974.

Four years later, he disappeared, hiding from the federal government....

Wait, wait, I left out part of the story. The 37 tons of marijuana, worth $75 million, that he tried to ferry into the U.S. His personal 61-foot boat was to be the key link in a 9-person smuggling ring....

And then? Twenty-three years pass. He drifts to Santa Barbara, and then Wyoming. He has two children. He earns a pilot's license. He works at a motel....

And then two years ago there was a child support dispute. When he's fingerprinted in court, he's arrested for the 1978 crime. Balding, graying, nearsighted, he faces up to 15 years in prison.

Instead, the judge sentences him to three. He'll be released sometime in 2004...



Grown-up men sing -- very slowly -- in a famous Christmas recording session. Their voices were later speeded up to produce the sound of the Chipmunks' singing "The Chipmunk Song."

It's like travelling back in time to 1958. Are you ready to sing your song?

"I'll say we are!"
"Yeah! Let's sing it now!"

I found the link on (Sidebar.) But the best part is peoples' comments after hearing the song. ...

"apparently Theodore is voiced by Duff Man."

"I think I heard the Devil whispering in that song..."


See how the previous post would look on's site.


Where do you find half-baked ideas? Half

The best part is the rabid debate over each idea's practicality. Feeling geeky tonight? Read one geek's plan to manage a corporate network using a computer game like Quake.