Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Do I Work For Disney?

Today's True Story.
This afternoon I got some photos developed at a little photo shop near my office, run by a couple of Chinese folks.
When I came to pick up the photos, the two people behind the counter asked if I was 'Disney'?
I looked at them blankly, and they asked again, with grins on their faces.
I had no idea what they meant. Were they off their nuts? Did the walkman headphones on my head make me look like I was wearing Mickey Mouse ears?
So I asked what they meant and they said I looked like I worked for Disney. They pointed outside the shop and said that lots of people who work at the Disney office nearby come to their shop.
This pleased me in two ways.
A) It's kind of exciting to have a Disney office next to us. I knew there were a lot of Disney animators working in Sydney (more than in LA apparently), but I didn't think they'd be working near my part of town. They certainly sound more impressive than the floors of public servants in our building.
B) Now I know that I can look young and groovy and talented enough to be a Disney employee, at least to a couple of folks who work in a photo shop and probably don't get out much.
So much better than having someone guess your public service employment status just by looking at you.
My guess is that this is the one and only day in my life where I'll be mistaken for a Disney employee.

PS. Cade is right. Scare Tactics should be booed off tv. Shame on Channel Nine. Shame, Shame, Shame!

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Top Ten Albums


The top six or seven have always been in my top ten. The last handful will
change from time to time.

* The Smiths "SINGLES"
How can one band have so many great songs?
There Is A Light That Never Goes Out is a contender for my favourite song of
all time.
So many of these songs can bring instant joy. Panic, and Ask, and
Girlfriend in a Coma.
They can be sweet and sad. They can make you want to slam your bedroom door
on the outside world. And you'll either have a dance or cry in your pillow.
Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now, How Soon Is Now?, The Boy With A Thorn In
His Side...
Just the names of these songs remind me why I have faith in music.
This is the one album Bjork has made that is best listened to from beginning
to end in one sitting. It's not a collection of disjointed marvels. It's
an hour of bliss.
The songs all fit beautifully. They're domestic and quiet and just as
strange as anything else Bjork has done.
This is the cd to put on while you are making stir-fry in your kitchen on a
sunny lazy Sunday. It's Not Up To You is a perfect song.
Just 7 songs on this cd. All on the various emotional results of love.
Powerful, emotional songs with clever lyrics. This is a cd that can really
move me. It's a cd that can make people cry.
I am now on my third copy of this cd. The first two copies I gave away to
friends. It's that kind of cd.
You know I love Ella, and this is a great boppy collection.
And it's got the best Ella ever - Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered.
* Michelle Shocked ARKANSAS TRAVELER
The cheeriest cd Michelle has made. It was the first Michelle cd I'd ever
Just a great listen with plenty of twang.
Fred recorded these songs in 1952. The familiar songs are mostly from his
old films with Ginger Rogers. But on this cd he is just singing with a
small jazz group. Classy and casual. I can never get bored of this.
* Marvin Gaye WHAT'S GOING ON
Only 9 songs. Far too short a cd.
Marvin's songs here have consistent themes. Marvin wants to spread the
message. And the top songs include What's Going On, Mercy Mercy Me, and
Inner City Blues.
I thought I should pick one disco/dance cd, and this would be my pick. Very
groovy. The 70's and the Nougties mixed in together.
My fave Luka cd. As usual Luka sings about issues that are important to
This has Ciara (such a pretty pretty song) and The Shape Of Love To Come.
And the sound is a little more worked through than in some of his other cds.
This has got Wish I Didn't Miss You, wich kills me. But I just love
everything on this groovy late-nite album. She's a smooth lady that Angie.

Very Important Also Rans:
* R.E.M. NEW ADVENTURES IN HI-FI. This is their most understated little
album. A beauty. And importantly it has Electrolite.
* Diana Krall ALL FOR YOU. Diana sings Nat King Cole songs and doesn't
bland them to death.
* Cake COMFORT EAGLE. - Though all of Cake's albums are good
listens from start to finish. This one just happens to have Short
Skirt/Long Jacket, and Opera Singer, and Meanwhile, Rick James... hell, it's
all good.
* Soundtrack from the film CURDLED. Quirky flop of a film, but it gave us
this cd, and yay for that. Only some of the songs are in English, and they
tend to be about being obsessed with someone to the point of murderous
psychosis - "I cannot live without you, or should I say, without me you're
not going to live". Yes sir, let's party in the town square and get drunk
on margaritas!
Super cool and sophisticated versions of these songs. Not for elevators.
Great cds. Always worth a re-listen.
Why not?

Will stop now.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Richard Wilkins Should Be Sent Back To Bed

Another something I must mention about Channel 9's showing of the Oscars last night.

Richard Wilkins - Nnnnnnnoooooooooo!!!!!!!!
I loudly complained at my tv when he popped his head into my favourite night of nights.
The man is an entertainment vacuum.
What is with Channel 9 giving that guy an income? Every time he opens his mouth a little part of my brain gives up and dies.
If he asked just 1 interesting question, say every 3 years or so, then I might be able to forgive his existence on my tv.
It's only Hollywood. You don't have to be a brain surgeon to understand it. But Richard continues to sound like the slow kid in the class that everyone has to politely smile at and humour.
Why don't they send him to interview people on the red carpet of the Daytime TV Awards instead? They'll be on his level there.

"How does it feel to be nominated?"
"You look spectacular!"
"Stand a little closer Julia. I haven't basked in someone else's fame for over 3 weeks and I'm feeling needy."
"How does it feel to be favourite to win?"
"How are you feeling?"
"Are you feeling?"
"Talk to me! Don't keep moving away! I can see you Tom!"
"You know everyone in Australia loves you!"
"Touch my hair!"

OSCAR 2004

It was OSCAR night last night, and LOTR picked up everything.
There should be a public holiday in New Zealand today.
No New Zealander should have to go to work, or get their fleece shorn today.
And Peter Jackson can be made king.

I was very pleased with both the supporting acting awards.

Tim Robbins was a good choice.
Anything that can make Susan Sarandon look so beamingly happy is a good thing.
They are such a great Hollywood couple. Smart, rich, sexy and talented. They got the 10 year age difference couple thing going before it became mandatory. And now they have little matching supporting performance oscarmen for their mantle-piece.

Renee Zellweger was very pleasing.
She was the best thing in Chicago and made a perfect Bridget Jones, so she deserved a statue of her own. She was nicely shapely last night and squinted a little less than usual. New eye-drops perhaps?

I'm not sure about Charlize Theron.
I've been told she's very good in Monster, but she looks like one of those pretty young actresses who win supporting actress oscars then disappear forever.
She gave a good happy speech, and only started to cry when thanking her mother for all the sacrifices that had been made. I think that's acceptable.

Sean Penn probably deserved to finally get a prize, but that left Bill Murray sitting without one.
Poor Bill.

Apart from the acting awards, there were only a few other awards that didn't go to New Zealanders.

There were at least two Australians.
Russell Boyd was another Australian to win for cinematography, and there was the guy who made the short Harvie Krumpet. I was pleased for him. Shorts are mostly ignored, but this guy got to stand up on stage holding an oscar alongside Sofia Coppola and Peter Jackson. He must've felt like a star. The paper says he has recently been receiving Centrelink payments. And it was nice of him to thank his 'beautiful boyfriend'. Awwww..

Annie Lennox had the most beamingest face all night.
She was like a girl who had just gotten a pony for her birthday when all she was expecting was a tricycle.
Her song was very beautiful, and the songs from Cold Mountain were good too, but they were all very tasteful and unhummable. Made me miss the old songs a bit - Under The Sea and The Theme From Shaft. Up Where We Belong and Blame Canada! Now they were good sing-a-longs.

* The top of Jamie Lee Curtis' dress seemed overly enthusiastic. Was trying a bit hard to show everyone that Jamie is indeed not a man.
* The ladies all looked very nice in their dresses. Uma Thurman looked a bit off maybe. But nobody wore anything too daring. They needed to invite Bjork or Cher I think, for a bit of colour.
* Robin Williams was hyperactive in a good way. He must've stuck his finger in a toaster just before the show.
* Jack Black and Will Farrell provided the only funny instance of presenter-banter. They provided the words for the music that ushers off people who win the smaller oscars and have speeches that go on too long. They sung brilliantly, though their song was longer than some of the speeches they were making fun of.
* Ian McKellan had an older looking date this time. Last time he was at the oscars (two years ago I think), the fellow he was with looked 24 or so. This time he had a little old man next to him. Don't know whether they are 'just friends' or not.
* I was very happy Blake Edwards got an award and got to do a bit of physical comedy with his runaway wheelchair. It didn't get that much of a laugh actually, but it was nicely done, and he'll have a nice memory to chuckle himself to sleep with at night. How did they ensure the chair didn't go off into the orchestra pit? Now that would have been hilarious!
* Billy Crystal was a cack. His opening medley was a blast. I was just a little disappointed in him for not wearing a funny costume or making comical use of an oversized prop even once during the whole night :-(

* The night was good but could have been improved I think.
I reckon they should have just given some spare oscars to Bill Murray, Peter Weir, Diane Keaton, and Naomi Watts, just for being cool.
And they should have gotten Johnny Depp to do something on stage.
Anything at all would have been appreciated.
You shouldn't invite Johnny Depp to an event and then just leave him sitting in a chair.
That's a terrible waste.