Nov 27, 2008

Thursday Music

Most that know me personally understand I'm a huge fan of old Metallica. As a youngster I rocked the air guitar to the And Justice For All album and knew all the lyrics to Master of Puppets. After the self titled record, often referred to as the Black ablum, came about I started losing interest as most of the older fans did. Not that I expected them to keep playing 10 minute long speed metal songs, but it wasn't my thing.

That being said there are a few tracks they've done since their peak years which are mildly enjoyable. I really got into the S&M album as I love classical and Metallica so the blend worked for me.

One of my favorite tracks of recent years, and granted there are just a few, is actually a cover of Tuesday's Gone from the Garage Days LP, a favorite song of mine anyways. Most people scoff at this, but I have to admit not all of the music I listen to is quality. If I really wanted something to listen to that outlined impressive musical skill I would abandon modern music altogether.

So on this Thanksgiving I bring you Mettalica's cover of Tuesday's Gone:

"Metallica is going to be one of those bands you look back on in the year 2008, that people will still listen to the way I still listen to Zeppelin and Sabbath albums." - Jason Newsted

Nov 26, 2008

Eat

Tomorrow many Americans will be sitting down with their loved ones and engage in acts of gluttony and give thanks for various things in their lives. Thanksgiving will be a small event for me as I'm taking the folks out to dinner rather than make Mom work really hard for the three of us.

I kind of miss sitting at the kids table. They're always more fun.

While this year has been a trying one personally I'm grateful for a lot in my life. I'm fortunate my birth mother gave me up for adoption rather than use the right given to her by Roe v Wade. If she did the latter the world would be pained without one less sexy, brilliant individual. To think there would be no Erik's Ramblings to pass the time.

I'm very thankful for the people in my life, both friends and family. Without them I would be even a more miserable son of a bitch. Also I think it's cool that I don't live in a third world country or have to sing Tom Jones songs on the street for change.

So for my American readers, all three of you, the folks at Erik's Ramblings wish you a safe and Happy Thanksgiving.

"On Thanksgiving I will stop to give thanks that my family is safe and healthy, especially because I realize that, following the tragedies of this year, it is all too real a possibility that they might not have been." - Bobby Jindal

Nov 25, 2008

Yes thank you

A Republican Political Action Committee (PAC) has created a commercial that details what they're most thankful for this Thanksgiving. Never mind the fact that they're not living in a third world country or the victims of violent crime. They are most thankful for the former Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

Okay I guess as stupid as this sounds I'm kind of thankful for her as well, but for different reasons. I'll list mine.

1. Thank you for bringing Tina Fey back on SNL. She's really hot.
2. Thank you for helping me cast a vote of my conscious, for the other side of course.
3. Thank you for bringing out of the shadows and exposing the bigoted, simple minded folk who make up the modern Republican party.
4. Thank you for hopefully insuring that none of your ilk will ever get nominated again.
5. Thank you for being the source of comedy gold.

"I love those hockey moms. You know what they say the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull is? Lipstick." - Sarah Palin

Nov 24, 2008

The greatest cab ride ever

Every three months or so my friend Eli and her hot friend from San Diego Andrea come to Seattle for their company meeting. It's become a tradition that Corey and I join them for drinks after their dinner with fellow colleagues. It always ends up being an enjoyable evening filled with spirits and treks to various places around the city.

Last time the girls were in town we decided to hit someplace new. Andrea came up with a place to consume more alcohol, but Eli was feeling the wrath of her new shoes and didn't want to make the trip on foot. None of us knew where it was, probably cause we were already a little tipsy, but had a rough idea. It was decided that we should get a cab.

We all pile into the taxi and tell the driver where it is we want to go. He responds saying he has a general idea of where it is. We travel down 1st avenue till one of us yells out 'there it is'.

We journeyed an entire block. The driver pulls over while letting out a sigh. I think the trip costs us something like three dollars. I gave him a good tip for wasting his time. At least Eli got some time off her feet.

"After all, what is your host's purpose in having a party? Surely not for you to enjoy yourself; if that were their sole purpose, they'd have simply sent champagne and women over to your place by taxi." - P. J. O'Rourke

Nov 22, 2008

Wiwille's movie reviews part 65

Tales of the warped mind are always popular in pop culture. Films like 'Silence of the Lambs' are in an odd way endearing to audiences, if that's even the right word. Maybe memorizing works better. Seeing into the mysteries that lie in the human brain and the darkness that it can contain is interesting. Maybe that's why serial killers are so popular.

'He Was a Quiet Man' tells the story of Bob, a loner of sorts with a vivid imagination. When he's not being ignored at work he's being abused by his superiors. Fantasizing about blowing up the building and taking all the employees lives along with it Bob finds himself amazingly taking down a random shooter who went postal in the cube farm. Instantly a hero Bob is promoted and suddenly finds himself some new found fame.

In taking out the gunman he also saved the life of Vanessa, the object of his affection. Recovering from the gunshot and being a paraplegic she relies on Bob's kindness as he takes care of her. Being her nurse he finds himself falling for her. A relationship ensues despite his better judgement of her character. Still he believes that she has changed her ways from climbing the corporate ladder by giving sexual favors to a sweet natured gal who appreciates the gifts of life.

It's an interesting film that wants to be a dark comedy and drama at the same time. While the script unravels in the third act 'He Was a Quiet Man' is an enjoyable story mostly for the performance by Christian Slater. The cinematography is amazing. While not a flawless film it's dark tone as well as impressive visuals make it one I would recommend.

Thanks to Mattbear for submitting this. Wanna see a film reviewed by Wiwille? Drop me an email or comment and you'll see it soon on Erik's Ramblings. Rules are posted here.

"Slater really sells Bob's tormented inner soul in a very appealing way; he feels like a real person inside his insane world." - Jeffery M Anderson

Nov 21, 2008

Thursday Music, on a Friday?

I know it's Friday and I'm posting a Thursday Music song. I've been ill the past couple days and neglected Erik's Ramblings. I was a little busy drinking more orange juice yesterday than the state of Delaware consumes in a year.

As a child I was a huge fan of pro-wrestling. I would marvel at the skills displayed by Randy Macho Man Savage, the high flying antics of Jimmy Superfly Snuka, and the intensity of my favorite, the Ultimate Warrior. My friend Shawn and I would often mock the matches in the living room leading to various bruisings, but thankfully we didn't hurt each other permanently. His little brother was used to practice our body slam skills as we threw him on mattresses, couches, and most of the time he would land there. On one occasions I had him pressed over my head, a feat I was very proud of, but as I tossed him onto the bed he bounced off and broke the nightstand. We got in a lot of trouble for that.

The spectacle of the event was enough to engross any child. Wrestling had violence and hot women. What more could a boy ask for?

The highlight of the show was always the charismatic Hulk Hogan who back then was everywhere. Young boys believed there was not a finer American than the Hulkster. We watched him grapple with Andre the Giant, take down the Iron Sheik (who by the way was the greatest of all the politically incorrect characters), and preach to us the value of saying your prayers, working out, and taking your vitamins. He even had a cartoon show which I loved.

The WWF, as it was called back then, released a music album containing a mixture of original songs performed by wrestlers and various tracks of intro music. My parents bought it for me and for this I think they deserve sainthood. As I played the tape over and over again I could almost sense their hatred for every second that album polluted our house. I now believe that it alone contributed to Mom's ulcers and Dad's high blood pressure. Years later my mother told me about how every time I listened to it my Dad would mumble the 'f' word, a phrase he rarely used. To elicit such profanity really captured how much he hated it.

Being the good father he was he actually took me to wrestling matches live. The poor man. Mom never came for reasons that are obvious to anyone that knows her. The fact that both of them didn't engage in acts of infanticide is a true testament to their character.

On the album was Hulk Hogan's original entrance music before he was granted the Real American song. For those of you not in the know the Rick Derringer song was actually written for a tag team before it became the staple of Hulkamania. So take a trip down memory lane with me and pay tribute to an American hero.

"If I do hit that rope and do a hop, skip and a jump and get up as high as I can, I'm just going to hold my breath, because I know I'm going to hear all kinds of scar tissue popping." - Hulk Hogan

Nov 19, 2008

For some reason they care and we don't care enough

The results of Prop 8 in California baffles me. We've all heard the arguments for and against gay marriage, but seriously I've yet to find someone who can simply explain how logically they can be against two consenting adults entering into what is in the eyes of the government a property arrangement.

I grew up in a religious home, Catholic to be exact. I was brought up to believe that homosexuality is a sin in the eyes of the Lord. It wasn't an issue that was discussed with much frequency in our house, but enough to where I truly believed in what I was told.

I grew older and more cynical about established traditions. I finally sat and read the good book cover to cover. I found the amount of sins listed in the Bible so numerous it was mind boggling. After much thought I just decided to leave someones personal life between themselves and God. I was done caring.

I have no personal stake in Prop 8 becoming an amendment of California's state constitution. I'm not gay, but in no way do I feel my government needs to defend the institution or it's sacredness for me. If I ever choose to enter the union my bride and I will make up our minds about it's holiness. The state can simply oversee the tax benefits, asset dispersal in case of dissolution, and that's about as far as I'm comfortable with my elected officials being involved in it. In my perfect world I would love to see marriage out of the hands of the government completely.

I won't go into some emotional rant ala Keith Olberman, cause do so would be disingenuous. Again I have no personal stake in the issue, but for this I say to conservatives. Since you've been a long opponent of government intervention in the personal and professional lives of ordinary citizens why does gay marriage get a free pass? In fact why is it that you so willingly allow your state officials to ban anything that might offend your delicate sensibilities when it has zero effect on your personal life? Why do you want it both ways?

I can understand having a religious or moral issue with gayness, but do you think your God really gives a good damn about them being married? I mean shouldn't his only concern, assuming your higher power has one, be with the sex act? What difference would it make to the Lord if gay people agreed to legally combine their assets, enjoy a tax break, and be allotted hospital visits?

Now it's unfair to target only conservatives regarding the passing of Prop 8. They ran an effective campaign and donated tons of money to see it pass. Now where were the liberals? Seriously did you all just give every nickle and dime to Obama and not seem to give a crap about the personal freedoms of your fellow citizens? If this civil right is so important as many has been shouting about, where was your money, time, and diligence? Sure you can give your loyalty to a person you know little about, but not take any notice in a bill clearly defined to deny someone the right to enter marriage. You sat back and celebrated the election of your chosen savior while many were suffering the loss of something so simple as the freedom to sign a contract.

Your apathy or your overwhelming love for everything in D.C. helped make sure this bill wuld pass. I'm just as guilty.

"I think that gay marriage should be between a man and a woman." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

Nov 18, 2008

A Muppet news flash

'I Kissed a Girl' came upon the airwaves as a cute little novelty song and became so over played it got annoying really quickly. The little diddie, which is not as clever as the songwriter would like to think, became an instant hit as DJs spun it in the hopes that many girls would hit the dance floor garnering attention from throngs of drooling men.

It worked.

Since I bring the readers of this blog important news stories I found an article that is of critical importance. Apparently the song was inspired by Scarlett Johansson. Yes my beloved, who recently broke my heart by marrying someone much hotter than I could ever be, was the reason this song came to be. According to the story she was very flattered by this.

The article goes on to explain singer Katie Perry's fascination with the debutant. In what can only be described as Pulitzer material the reporter quoted her as saying "I was with my boyfriend at the time, and I said to him, 'I’m not going to lie: If Scarlett Johansson walked into the room and wanted to make out with me, I would make out with her. I hope you’re okay with that?'"

I'll be in my bunk.

"One of the best things for a woman to hear is that she is sexy." - Scarlett Johansson

Scarlett Johansson 'Flattered' to Know She Inspired Katy Perry's 'I Kissed a Girl'

Nov 17, 2008

I...just...don't...get...it....

There's been a lot of talk about the possibility of Hillary Clinton being picked for Secretary of State once our President Elect enters office. I don't get it.

Seriously.

She's been a success as a senator and ran a long hard primary campaign, but seriously folks do you see her as diplomat to the nations of the world? I can't see her going off script at all, much less get involved in tough negotiations with heads of state.

Look I know the job seems a lot less prestigious since Bush took office, but that's no excuse. If she does get the position I do hope she's good for the country and the world, but I'm skeptical. I know she's a strong party leader, but seriously Secretary of State? Am I alone in my feelings about this?

"The challenges of change are always hard. It is important that we begin to unpack those challenges that confront this nation and realize that we each have a role that requires us to change and become more responsible for shaping our own future." - Hillary Clinton

Nov 15, 2008

Wiwille's moive reviews part 64

Rarely does a horror film evoke any emotion out of me. Maybe I'm just a cold hearted dude, but seeing dumb teenagers being hacked up is hardly frightening. Rarely does a script concentrate on necessary elements such as character development or even decent pacing so most of the frights are forced at best.

I've seen clips of the 'Bride of Frankenstein' many times as I'm sure all of you have, but this is the first time I've actually sat and watched it in it's entirety. It's referenced in pop culture all the time yet I'm positive very few of my generation took time out to view this. Well now that I've started this movie review thing I've no excuse to not watch it.

'Bride of Frankenstein' starts right where the last film ended. The Monster, played brilliantly by Boris Karloff, is running amok in the village trying to fit in, which ends with terrifying results. The townsfolk are frightened of him as one would expect and the poor being is trying hard to find someone who will assist him in the new world he's been thrust in.

Meanwhile Dr Frankenstein is horrified at the results of his experiment. Sitting in his manor with his fiance he regrets his attempt to play God and considers a new life. He is then visited by Dr Pretorious who tries to convince him that in the name of science they continue the work the Baron started. Dr Frankenstein disagrees; however his visitor finally blackmails him into creating a female for the Monster.

'Bride of Frankenstein' is often campy, but it's tender at the same time. Karloff is amazing as the tragic figure of Frankenstein's madness. Playing the role of what is essentially a child with a good heart with little to no brain the audience can't help but feel pity for the Monster instead of terror. The special effects are amazing for the time period and have a sense of authenticity. While the bride appears only for a few moments on screen it makes for an amazing and almost heartbreaking climax. Some of the scenes may suggest themes that are quite racy and somewhat disturbing for it's time, but that's what makes this film all the more interesting. I would recommend seeing this not for the scares, but for the touching story.

Thanks to Greg for submitting this. Wanna see a film reviewed by Wiwille? Drop me an email or comment and you'll see it soon on Erik's Ramblings. Rules are posted here.

"Karloff manages to invest the character with some subtleties of emotion that are surprisingly real and touching." - Variety

Nov 14, 2008

Quick draw

According to many news reports gun savy Americans are buying up firearms at alarming rates due to fear that the new President may issue bans on such weapons. Even in a town as liberal as the one I reside in are seeing record number of sales.

This paranoia seems to be generated by the NRA (surprise) and others of the same ilk. While it may be true that the long expired guidelines set under the Brady Bill will come back into effect I doubt much else will be done considering it was hardly mentioned in his campaign and Obama has far more pressing matters to deal with.

I've made my opinions about gun ownership and it's place in the bill of rights clear numerous times, but I find the paranoia on both sides of the issue kind of amusing. Those who own guns for reasons other than sport are living in constant fear of a criminal or their government doing them or their loved ones harm. People who are pro-gun control are hiding under their beds wondering if some trigger happy redneck will shoot up their local church of retail.

Some of these fears are well founded and I can't blame them too much. I can understand the philosophy of wanting to live under the safety of tyranny than the dangers of freedom. Maybe if I had a family my opinion may change on the Second Amendment. Still I believe if there comes a time where the constitution is amended to ban all firearm sales I will accept it as the process allows.

Would I like to see a world without guns? Sure I would. I would also like to see a world without American Idol, Larry the Cable Guy, and SUVs. I'd also be happy if random girls with the body of Scarlett Johansson would give me spontaneous lap dances.

This culture of fear that sweeps our nation on both sides is disturbing. Wait.......I live in fear of the fearful? I'm such a hypocrite. I should really stop posting about issues I'm ignorant about. Sucks being a dumb fat bastard.

"If you can't protect yourself with talk, you won't be alive to protect yourself with guns." - Arthur Boyd

Nov 13, 2008

Thursday Music

As a younger lad I was a huge fan of Guns n Roses. Yes I rocked out to Appetite for Destruction many a time even going so far as to set up my own living room concert with a friend of mine. I still listen to the album on an infrequent basis and find it's one of the few that I don't find myself skipping tracks on.

Then came GnR Lies which I enjoyed. Shortly thereafter they unleashed Use Your Illusion 1 & 2, which was a mixed bag at best. I still say if they took the best songs off both albums and combined them into one you'd have an enjoyable record. Of course they never asked me.

The Spaghetti Incident sounded like something that was made to stroke their own egos and was largely forgotten if listened to at all.

Now with the current release of suckage I would like to remind all that this band once rocked a long time ago.

"I like Nine Inch Nails and I like hip-hop." - Axl Rose

Nov 12, 2008

For the ladies

I was recently reading an article about what kinds of women to avoid dating. While it was very funny it got me to thinking about how many lists were written for women about what guys not to date. Most of them were composed by females which makes some sense, but since I'm a giver I have a list of types of men all girls should not consider getting involved with. A male's perspective should do wonders.

1. Avoid men who own more shoes than you. I shouldn't have to explain why.
2. Avoid a guy who says he's not ready for a relationship. They're not lying and no you're not going to change their minds. They're guys. They don't change.
3. Avoid a guy who browses Craigslist, Match.com, etc looking for hookups. You'll never be his girlfriend.
4. Avoid men who still talk to their ex on a regular basis. They hate themselves.
5. Take heed against those who don't open doors for you, won't walk street side of the sidewalk, or get upset at you for changing the music on the car stereo. They're pansies.
6. When a man displays a foul temper run like hell.
7. Avoid Wiwille. This goes without saying.
8. Do not date a man who doesn't read. They're dead inside.
9. Check the pics on his cell phone. If something sends a red flag waving then bolt. You know what I'm talking about.
10. Avoid a guy who cups his cell with his hand while sending text messages with you present. You should know what's going on.
11. If any of my friends decide to date a guy who has those fake nuts hanging from his pickup violence will ensue.
12. Steer clear of bloggers who feel self important and write meaningless lists when they could be doing something productive with their lives.
13. Lite beer drinkers should be handled with caution.
14. Men who think Toby Keith is an American hero must be avoided.
15. If a guy sprouts an erection at a viewing of Rocky IV I would suggest not seeing them again.

I think that's enough for now.

"Nothing defines humans better than their willingness to do irrational things in the pursuit of phenomenally unlikely payoffs. This is the principle behind lotteries, dating, and religion." - Scott Adams

Nov 11, 2008

Wiwille's movie reviews part 63

'Say Anything' was probably the first 80's romantic comedy I sat through and it's always been a staple in my film catalogue. John Cusack plays the already mentioned Lloyd Dobbler, a recent high school grad who's career plans are suffering. Living in the moment he asks out the seemingly unobtainable Diane Court, the beautiful valedictorian with aspirations of studying at Oxford.

To Lloyd's surprise she says yes and a romance ensues much to the dismay of Diane's protective father. Since she will leave the country in a few months Lloyd makes it his mission to spend as much time wooing the lovely Diane. She's a little more logical than her romantic endeavour and tension of course springs between the two.

'Say Anything' is quite possibly one of the most endearing romantic comedies I've ever witnessed. The script treats the teenage characters with respect which is refreshing. The dialogue is genuine and and sweet natured. Cameron Crowe created a classic by appealing to the emotions of both genders without being overly sappy or unrealistic. The theme of doing whatever it takes to show your affection for the one you love still strikes a chord with me and hopefully that'll never change.

Strangely enough this film made some forms of stalking somehow seem attractive. Amazing how they pulled that off.

I used to date a girl who told me that her dream man was a cross between Holden Caufield and Lloyd Dobbler. How she expected these two personalities to exist in one guy was a mystery to me, but she swore she would marry that person. I hope she did.

As you probably assumed I would recommend this. Thanks to Kelli for submitting this.

Wanna see a film reviewed by Wiwille? Drop me an email or comment and you'll see it soon on Erik's Ramblings. Rules are posted here.

"At last, a teenage love story with real characters instead of cliches, poses, and attitudes." - Jonathan Rosenbaum

Nov 10, 2008

Wiwille does good deed for the day, decade

It may surprise some of you that I can be prone to doing acts of kindness. Yes your scruffy fat author here can help those he feels in need and this was apparent this weekend.

As some of you are aware Andrea and Justin are relocating to Reno. Because I seem to be the go to guy for assisting with moving I offered to help load the truck. Most people are opposed to helping their buddies pack furniture, but I look at the bright side. I get free food and alcohol.

Considering I've helped Andrea move every year since I've met her she decided to recruit others to assist with the drive to Reno Unfortunatley the people she had lined up fell through. Since I offered to assist if things went awry they called me on Thursday and asked if I could pack the truck on Saturday, drive a pickup to Reno, unload the furniture, then fly back to Seattle on Sunday night.

Man that's a long trip. Do I really want to assist with this? Should I just say no?

I said yes.

Saturday I woke up and found to my surprise we had numerous people helping load the vehicle. Hauling furniture down three flights of stairs was a bit of a workout as to be expected, but it went slow as keeping everyone on task was more of a chore than one would think. We finally finish at around 2p. Andrea in her car, Justin in the Budget Rent-A-Truck, and I in his pickup started the journey south to Reno.

11:30 pm rolls around. We finally made it to Grant's Pass, Oregon. I was beat. I'm clearly getting to old for this. I spent the evening on the cell phone having people keep me company as I travel down the freeway without cruise control or a CD player. I sang silly songs on the radio and annoyed friends with my renditions of 'King of the Road' and the like. I must've been a sight to every passing motorist.

Before hitting the town we pulled into a tiny area that consisted mostly of a truck stop and an adult shop. I forgot how those places are a treasure trove of consumer goodness. I jump out of the pickup to start filling it up, but forgot that Oregon doesn't let you pump your own gas.

The store was filled with items that blew my mind. They had DVDs, LCD monitors, various electronics, remote control cars the size of a small child, religious literature and t-shirts, an arcade, snack bar, and large selection of snacks. I want to start another blog and journey to every truck stop documenting all the goodies I could find.

Below are some sound bytes from various friends who learned of my trek:

"Duuuuuude you are fucking crazy."
"Ha. I knew you'd end up going to Reno."
"Oh....my.....God....."
"Are they going to get you a lap dance?"
"1...2...Freddy's after you."
"You just called and sang 'head, shoulders, knees and toes' and hung up."

After a night of sleeping on the hide a bed I woke to the alarm on my phone. I lied on what was the equivalent of concrete covered with astro turf debating on whether smashing the phone into a thousand pieces was a good idea. I decided against a violent outburst at an inatimate object.

We had a continetal breakfast which consisted of biscuits and gravy and toast. We then pack into our vehicles and make the last leg of our journey. We stop in Weed, California and of course cracked various juvenile jokes about the town's namesake.

Finally we got to the highway leading from I-5 to Reno. The drive turned from dull to beautiful as we were passing through Shasta and Lasser National Forrests. At times the scenery was so pretty I wanted to pull over the truck and quit my life in Seattle and spend the rest of my days as a ranch hand. It was truly God's country and I want to go back as soon as humanly possible.

The cell got no signal through the wilderness so it was up to me to entertain myself. I flipped through the stations and heard all sorts of bad songs ranging from Bryan Adams, Celine Dion, but finally I came across a good rock station which kept me satisfied as I soaked in the atmoshphere.

We pull into a diner sitting off the highway which had the stereotypical old people in trucker caps and work attire talking as if they're pontificating issues such as third world debt relief. I can't wait till I'm old and have a sense of importance.

Finally we make it to Reno in the mid-afternoon. I didn't get to spend much time there as we unloaded the truck as fast as we could and they had to take me to catch my flight.

I sat in a two prop plane and noticed the guy next to me smelled of moldy cheese. There were two guys sitting behind me wearing attire that advertised the college they went to over 23 years ago. The men were playing cards and were annoying the flight attendants by not leaving their tray tables upright when necessary. They argued up a storm with two of them about how putting the tray up would inconvenience them to no end and wouldn't budge. I hear the flight attendants repeat how it was federal regulations to put it up over and over again which was countered by juvenile responses about how that was stupid and they just want to play cards. After finally getting sick and tired of listening to grown men whine about how they must have a flat surface to play their game I decided I had enough.

"Look," I said turning around. "Put it up. Put it up now."

They just stared at me shocked. One of them finally smirked and gave me a nod with a 'yeah right' look. I reach down and knock the cards off the tray table. The deck spilled out onto the floor. They sit frozen.

"Sick of hearing you two whine like bitches. Leave the ladies alone for fuck's sake and do as your told. Stupid pansy ass."

They are motionless. I start to mimick them.

"Waaahhhh I wanna play cards. Waaaahhh I was breast fed until I was eight. Waaaaahhhh I'm entitled to be act like a jack ass in public. Waaahhhhh"

I get back to serious mode. I stare one of them down. They put the tray tables up.

I turn back around and start to read my book. A round of applause was given by everyone within earshot. The lady in front of me turned around and gave me a high five. The guys said nothing as they played a spontaneous round of 52 pick up. I assumed they would be wanting a conversation with me after we exited the plane, but they wouldn't even look at me as they made their way to bagagge claim. I probably looked mean as hell given I hadn't shaved in a few days and was pretty beat.

I'm normally not prone to outbursts like that, but those two really got on my nerves. I guess I'm not a nice guy when I think about it.

"Friends don't help friends move" - WIGSF

Nov 6, 2008

Drunken Wiwille....on video!

With cell phone cameras, tiny camcorders, and the like I sometimes forget that my drunken antics will be recorded forever. Not that I really give a damn when I'm busy pickling my liver, but when sobriety rears it's ugly head I feel a tinge of fear over what exactly has been documented.

Being a former wedding photographer I was used to being behind the camera a lot, but recently my highly intoxicated self has made its way to video. You may have read my post a while back about Andrea and Justin's wedding where good times were indeed had. Well the video is up.

Yes folks Wiwille is on video for the blogsphere to enjoy and/or mock. My wobbly speech is about 23:00 into it, the last speech to be made. Just look for the chunky guy in a white button down.

"Music played at weddings always reminds me of the music played for soldiers before they go into battle." - Heinrich Heine


Banks Wedding! from Justin Banks on Vimeo.

Thursday Music

Cover tunes are such a mixed bag. While some can actually improve on the original there are others that can painfully bastardize the harmony of the song's first incarnation. With music constantly being sampled, i.e. ripped off, it's no surprise that kids would rather listen to a modern update of a classic.

What's fun about cover tunes is the debates they inspire amongst music buffs who may fancy themselves connoisseurs, but in reality don't listen to anything produced before 1986. Many bands have made quite a name for themselves copying silly songs such as early Van Halen and one hit wonder country groups, but there are some quality bands that can belt out a previous hit with good results.

Today I bring you a band which is a favorite of my best friend covering Slade's 'Come on Feel the Noise'. Yes I know this has been covered before by the infamous buttrock band Quiet Riot.

You are correct that I'm posting this partially to annoy Mattbear.



"We're not arrogant, we just believe we're the best band in the world." - Noel Gallagher

Nov 4, 2008

It's over

Last night I watched a man step on the stage to speak to this country. He stood in front of his microphone and like a rock star he swooned the audience with his command of language, his message of hope, and his amazing charisma. Girls were crying, celebrities were gushing, and last night all were entranced by the left's new hero.

A friend's obnoxious buddy stood up from his chair as the speech was being delivered. He then yelled that he couldn't believe this nation elected a black president.

If you asked me a few years ago if our country was ready for something like that I would have laughed at the idea. I truly underestimated how progressive the US could be.

I walked outside. I heard fireworks. I get into my car and start my way home. Sitting at a red light I look over to the car next to me. The girl started chanting Obama's name. She had me roll down my window and we slapped high fives as she leaned out the car. She then grasped my hand and shivered with glee. The girl blew me a kiss and I raised my hand to catch it. They drove off sharing their excitement with anyone within earshot.

Hope. It filled the city of Seattle as a sense of closure was brought to an incompetent administration. This country wanted something. The public cried out for change in our government and amazingly enough they got what they wished for. This is what I love about living in the US. If we really want it we can not only elect a minority president, but one day we can see a good one rise to power. Yes we can do it if we struggle, sacrifice, and never stop believing that all things are possible. As the history books close on this chapter of our existence that I've been lucky to not only observe but participate in I do hope it's readers will learn about this moment. The time when the electorate stood up to the powers that exist and demanded something new, something better, and for generations later we expected something greater from our elected leaders. It's citizens would stand for no less than an amazing person occupying 1600 Pennsylvania. Maybe that's a romantic ideal that only exists on television, but for a moment I felt that it may be possible.

Time will tell if Obama will be a good President or not. Regardless it is my hope that our citizens never forget the trials of living with a leader like Bush and never act as apathetic towards the federal government as they're used to.

"Americans... still believe in an America where anything's possible - they just don't think their leaders do." - Barack Obama

Vote

Unless you live like Grizzly Adams you are fully aware of the fact that today is election day. If you haven't cast your ballot I implore you to do so. Hey you can get a free cup of Starbucks for doing so.

They should give away beer.

Anyways for those who care about which lobbyist endorsed candidate will rule their office at the whim of special interests I plead with you to head down to the polls and make your voice heard.

They should give free lap dances for voting.

So....if you're unclear about who you're going to vote for simply do some online research to see which politician fits your political persuasion. This can be done from the lowest of offices to the President. It's simple really. If you're still confused you can call me and I'll tell you how to vote...

...Hell I'll settle for a glance at nice boobs at the polls.....

....Back on track then. Voting is integral to the democratic process and we as a people can't afford to not get off our asses and take some time from watching reality television and abusing our children to go to the polling stations...

...could we at least get a shot of whiskey?....

Okay I'm getting a little distracted here. Do your civic duty and vote today. Your future depends on it. Even if it is for the wrong person (McCain) just head your lazy ass to the polls.

"Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost." - John Quincy Adams

Nov 3, 2008

Wiwille's movie reviews part 62

I avoided Michael Clayton for a long time. Although I heard nothing but praise for the film I just wasn't interested in seeing another drama about a law firm. While the subject matter can be interesting most films that tackle this subject fall easily into formula.

This movie far surpassed my expectations.

Michael Clayton (George Clooney) plays a 'janitor' for a law firm entrenched in a six year long class action suit. A fixer of sorts he solves problems arising from legal action, but never from inside a courtroom. Recently he's been asked to keep a lawyer under control after said counsel displayed his mental illness by stripping down at a deposition and chasing a plaintiff out into the snow.

Struggling to keep his friend under wraps while keeping his personal life from crumbling Michael attempts to maintain his loyalty to his work. Michael learns of the disturbed lawyer's possession of a document that may cost the firm the case. Michael's attempts to get through to him fail and the defendant is growing impatient with the firm's inability to keep things under wraps.

Michael Clayton is one of the finest acted films I've seen in quite some time. Every actor gives a great performance. The editing is paced well and I can't say enough about the dialogue. The director did an amazing job of making what is a tired formula into an excellent thriller that trusts it's audiences' intellect. It's refreshing.

Thanks to Mattbear for submitting this. Wanna see a film reviewed by Wiwille? Drop me an email or comment and you'll see it soon on Erik's Ramblings. Rules are posted here.

"While the plot is complex in the telling, it unfolds onscreen with propulsive fascination." - Geoff Pevere

Election time

Election time is tomorrow and a mixture of dread and excitement is filling the air across both sides of the aisle. Me I've already casted my ballot and I'm currently in wait and see mode.

I used to have a respect for any and all reasons people made their choice, but that has since changed. While I understand most vote with their wallet and I can't say I blame them completely I cannot sit back and idly give nods to people who only vote for selfish gains.

While I understand the morality of issues such as abortion, gay marriage, etc. I look to my President to handle one issue above all and that being foreign policy. Our country is in dire need of a better relationship with the world community which not only affects our standing in the Security Council it also ties in with our trade relations. For social issues I hope our Governors, Senators, and the like can aptly defend and it's own party's platform.

But like most Americans we have no desire to clean up the mess we've made. We'd rather sit back and demand the President solve each and every issue this country faces. This is exactly why I'm worried about Obama assuming he gets elected.

Take a trip back in time with me. Bill Clinton won the 92 election with much hype. Promising to fix the recession, fight for minority rights, make sure nationalized health care is a viable option, and insuring broccoli will one day taste like bacon he entered the White House with very high expectations. Sadly his first couple years didn't go as expected as a half assed 'don't ask don't tell' policy was implemented, the health care fiasco created even a larger mess for the industry, and he was viewed upon as a weak leader incapable of delivering on the policies of his party.

Due to his inability to live up to the hype the Republicans took over Congress in the mid-term elections for the first time in decades. Consequently we saw a great politician turn into a lame duck who in a hundred years from now will only have impeachment to be remember for. Granted given the disaster that the current administration is we look back and romanticize our past, but as history moves on I see that changing.

Voters tend to have very short attention spans and I'm hoping the public will not demand that Obama be so Christ like if he enters the office, but I'm cynical. This could be a big win for the Republicans if he doesn't deliver soon and this upsets me. The economy is not going to turn around at the drop of a hat, the war won't cease, and we still have a lot of foreign relations that needs to be mended, but I'm afraid it won't happen soon enough for our impatient electorate.

All that being said I do hope you cast your ballot tomorrow and pray you not only think about the highest office in the land, but your other civil servants as well. Dispense the responsibility wisely and remember that they are just human beings as fallible as us. Well maybe they don't drink as much as I do.....

"It wasn't simply that Clinton created the greatest prosperity in the country's history. Or that we created 22 million new jobs, more than ever before. Under Clinton, poverty was reduced 25%." - Sidney Blumenthal

Nov 2, 2008

Halloween with Wiwille

I remember Halloweens of years ago, where mischief ruled the evening. Pumpkins smashed, cars egged, and general neglect of any activity that was safe or reasonable was on the agenda of many a teenager including myself.

Now I'm 33 years young. Not much has changed.

The night started off well with some drinking down at Ishca's. A live band was playing Irish music as beverages were consumed at a rate that would make Boris Yeltsin proud. Lively conversation and costume watching was to be had as there were many interesting outfits.

Only one guy got my Boondock Saints outfit and it was because of the fake tattoo (thanks Eli).

The evening progressed and we all made our way down to Rumors. I was the first to arrive and luckily a friend was up at the front of the line so I got to bypass the hour long wait. Sadly most of my friends didn't so just a few of them waited to get in. Standing in line at a gay friendly bar was quite surreal. Jessica's friend greeted me by grabbing my package. Yes it was a guy. I just let it go.

Finally I enter the bar and get myself a drink. I figured I needed one after having my genitals violated. Still I had a good time catching up with an old friend, dancing, and checking out all the interesting costumes. It would have been a better evening if I hadn't fell on the dance floor, but it wasn't the first time that happened and if I don't change my drinking habits it probably won't be the last.

The rest of the weekend was spent recovering from being up for almost 24 hours that Friday. I'm still beat. I really need sleep and yet here I am blogging. I'm getting too old for this. The things I do to keep writing. I wish I could've written this on Halloween. That would've been an interesting post. Probably illiterate, but that's nothing new.

"There is nothing funny about Halloween. This sarcastic festival reflects, rather, an infernal demand for revenge by children on the adult world." - Jean Baudrillard