Category Archives: idiots

A Very Scary Toy

Despicable Me

Despicable Me ~ There’s nothing new here in this computer-animated tale of a super-villain trying to stay viable with a younger more ruthless villain nipping at his heels. Complicating matters further is his insidious adoption of three young girls to help further his plans, which backfires in that he begins to care for them.

It’s a simple heartwarming story, but it also works on even simpler more primal levels. Similar to the first Shrek or more accurately the old Warner Bros cartoons, it also has a fun immature hilarity in the Spy Vs. Spy vein.

Only one thing took away from the flick and that was the ‘minions’ of the main character Gru. These creatures, comparable to mumbling Nerf bullets, that act as the villain’s henchmen are supposed to be cute and lovable. I found them annoying and abrasive and disliked the time they spent on the screen. I think I would have rather had more human, and understandable, underlings.

Doubling up their annoyance was the ad before the film that using a phone app one could translate the minions’ mumblespeak. If you want to really make me angry in a movie theater, have your cellphone on throughout – something that most places frown upon, yet this film encourages it!

All that said, Despicable Me was quite enjoyable, maybe a bit rough for the sensitive kids, and maybe even more for the over-sensitive parents, but I really had fun. Recommended.

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Mom Beat by Son Over French Fries

Too Fat to Fly?

I love Kevin Smith. I just love him. And I love his work. He’s a hero, an inspiration, and a helluva writer/director – and a big comics geek too – come on, what’s not to love? But he seems to have gotten himself into some trouble with Southwest Airlines.

I also have some voyeuristic history with Southwest as well. One of my guilty television pleasures a few seasons back was the A&E series “Airline.” It chronicled the efforts (and sometimes non-efforts of Southwest Airlines and their customer service department to take care of those who fly with them. Sometimes the customer was the monster, but most times it was Southwest. It was a very unintentionally funny show, but it has always made me a bit tentative when flying Southwest.

This week, Kevin Smith and Southwest have come to blows, and I’m really not sure who the monster is. Southwest ejected Smith from a recent flight for not passing ‘the armrest test,’ in other words, both armrests have to come down while seated. After being tossed, Kevin launched an attack via Twitter on the airline. It hasn’t been pretty.

Southwest fought back on their blog, Kevin hit them with not only his blog but also an emergency SModcast. I hate seeing folks I like fighting. But as Kevin Smith himself said today, “let’s talk about anything else tomorrow.”

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Low Budget Lacrosse

I am a huge Philadelphia Wings fan, I love lacrosse and I love the Wings. I’ve been a season ticket holder for nearly two decades. Now I realize that the team hasn’t won a championship in nine years but in the years before that, they nearly scored every one. There’s a long history here. The team has unfortunately fallen into that terrible losing pattern most Philadelphia sports teams get caught up in – almost to the play-offs.

I attended the home opener on Saturday and was a bit shocked by what I found. It seems the Wachovia Complex (or whatever the hell they are calling it this week) has decided to put the squeeze on the Wings. I guess no wins means no money, but this is just ridiculous. It feels like they are trying to tight-ass Major Indoor Lacrosse out of Philadelphia.

Prices have gone up, not just a little but a lot. Parking up by 30% and most of the food up by a buck. That’s not a big thing really, that’s business as usual for a sports complex, but it gets worse. Let’s start with the tickets. They didn’t send them out via snail mail so we would have real tickets – they went out via email, to save paper I suppose, and that was just the start of the cheapness.

The program which are normally thick books of articles and stats was now basically a folded over flier. They had closed off the entire upper level and turned out the lights up there. A grade school choir sang the National Anthem rather than a big or local name singer. Only the starting line-up of the team was announced as opposed to all the players participating in the game. Our mascot, Mad Dog, who had previously been stripped of his ATV a couple years back, lost his whole costume save just a dog mask. And then the kicker, not that our half-time shows have ever been all that spectacular, but – there was no half-time show!

What the hell is up, Wachovia Complex?

The Wings won Saturday’s game 12-8. The players gave as good as they usually do. I have no complaints in that department, at least I don’t now that Jacobs is no longer on the Wings. There could have been more fights, but then again, there could always be more fights.

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Loews Cherry Hill Does Not Want My Business

You’ve all heard my rap on Loews Theatres in Cherry Hill NJ before, but after my experience Christmas night I have come to the conclusion that not only don’t they want my money – they don’t want your money either, and furthermore, they just don’t care.

For the scary high prices they now charge for a movie ticket, well over ten dollars, they expect you to watch a film sometimes with the lights on, usually with audience members talking loudly, either to each other or on their cellphones, and texting throughout. And if you say anything to these other audience members they will sometimes go as far as to threaten you. That’s just part of the experience at the Cherry Hill Loews it seems, part of what you’re paying for I guess.

Now when I brought this to the attention of the manager on duty, Kathryn by name (and only first name as employees are not allowed to give their full names, nor are they allowed to give the names of superiors), the theatres are supposed to be checked by an employee once per show. I never saw anyone come in, and if they had, they would have seen all the lit cellphones and also noticed that the audience noise was drowning out the sound of the film.

Now an argument might be made that they were busy that night and might not have had time to check the theatres. Why then did more than a few employees I saw (before the film when it was even busier) have time to chat with friends, throw cups back and forth behind the snack counter, and chase each other into the rest room? Yeah, they were busy all right.

Now Kathryn No-Name was nice enough give us passes to see another film at the wonderful Loews Theatres where we would be treated to probably a similar experience. I would have rather gotten my money back. After all, if I had gotten rat poison instead of Frosted Flakes, do you think the folks at Kelloggs would have given me my money back or another box of rat poison?

Is this what the movie theatre experience is about these days? At least at Loews Cherry Hill it is. There is an alternative. I would like to direct anyone seeking a movie night out to the Showcase at the Ritz in Voorhees. It’s not far from Loews and has just about the same variety of films and even some from off the beaten path. Not only is the viewing experience a pleasure, but the staff is friendly and cooperative. They also have various special events and goodies all the time. They have my full endorsement, and would love your business. And no, I don’t know anyone there, nor do I work for them, they just know about customer service unlike some theatres.

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French Fry Diary 45: Hash Browns Should Be Hot…

The Drama Queen Speaks!

From Small Screen Scoop, here is Chima Simone’s statement regarding being kicked off “Big Brother 11,” spelling and grammar intact…

”Yes, I did in fact quit the show, although there are reports on EW from CBS to the contrary. Big Brother would like everyone to believe I was kicked off for not following the rules, but I went to the producers repeatedly over the past couple of days wanting to leave….wanting out of that house!

“As crazy as that house is, the producers NEVER want the world to think or know that we houseguests DO LEAVE when it becomes futile to stay. I lost faith in the show & my ability to remain committed to this game. All of the remaining housemates know I wanted to leave and that is why any conversation concerning me is cut in the live feed because they don’t want America to hear the truth about my voluntary departure.

“Do you really believe that I would be expelled for tossing my microphone when past houseguests have only been kicked off for violence & threats of violence? You know better, as do I.

“It’s better that I left. I did what was best for me in this game and that was to leave. When I chose to play & play hard the power I did earn was completely usurped by a game piece never used before in this game and my HOH reign was rendered useless. I have no regrets. As cliche’ as it sounds, until the public is a part of a human pressure cooker, then the judgements should cease.

“I find it interesting that my personal attacks on Russell have been highlighted, but his attacks on me pushed under a rug. Selective portrayals? I think so. Russell did terrorize the house, especially the women in the house. Why America constantly finds men attacking women okay, yet vilifies the woman defending herself, will always confound me. But what’s done is done, now BB fans can find a new woman to hate. I didn’t sign up for what I was exposed to & I left gladly. It was the principle of the matter, the $500,000 prize be damned. That’s all for now! Take Care…”

Just an observation, since Chima was, um, let’s just say, she is no longer there, the house is quieter, more sane and all the houseguests seem more relaxed and comfortable. Hmmm, I wonder what could be different now?

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One Less Baby

Seems there is one less baby in the Big Brother house today as Chima was removed in the final hour of Showtime coverage last night.

Last night I posted a blog entry about how much the current cast are idiots and big babies. if only I had waited another hour or so I would have had a more exciting ending to the story.

Apparently Chima was asked to wear her microphone, and refused. When fellow houseguest Kevin retrieved it for her, she threw it in the pool. She was asked to get a new microphone by Big Brother and she refused. “You know what? …. this …. I’m outta here.”

A house meeting was called and Chima told by producers that she would pay for the damaged mike. That’s when the supposed tantrum started with Chima demanding (which she does a lot of, I’ve noticed) to speak with the producers in the Diary Room. The door to the room would not open, no matter how hard Chima pulled. Lydia tried to open the door crying but is told to sit down, along with Natalie.

When the live feeds to the house came back online following the house meeting, Chima was gone. Jeff had the last word when he said, “and then there were seven.”

Good riddance, I say. In reality television there’s a thin line between entertaining and irritating, and Chima crossed it some time ago.

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Never Going Back to My Old School…

The eleventh season of the American “Big Brother” premiered tonight on CBS. The reality TV series focuses on a number of individuals living together in one house for an extended amount of time, isolated from the outside world, participating in competitions and voting each other out until only one remains to collect a huge cash prize.

I’ve been a fan since the first season. Notably the American edition is slightly different from the dozens of versions done in countries across the globe. You see, Americans are stupid and have shorter attention spans. That’s apparently why the show seems to attract such idiots – or at least that’s my theory. Basically, if I like a contestant, either America, or the rest of the idiot housemates, won’t – and they’ll get voted off. It’s such a sure thing, I should bet money.

There are some contestants introduced tonight that I genuinely liked – Ronnie the gamer, Lydia the girl with the ink, and especially Kevin the graphic designer. But they are immediately doomed when this season’s surprise premise is announced. We are always told to ‘expect the unexpected’ when it comes to the seasonly themes, and this season’s – well, it instantly put my initial faves in the bullseye.

The theme for “Big Brother 11” is high school, as the housemates are separated by clique – just like high school. The cliques are: the Athletes, the Popular, the Brains, and the Offbeat. For the last two, please feel free to substitute the words geek, dork, nerd, or whatever works for you – the kids that the first two groups would beat on, call names, shove in lockers and give wedgies to. Hell, even the first competition included, guess what, wedgies.

When it was said the theme was high school, guess which group said they would never go back to high school, and guess which group said they loooved high school, and guess which group had looks of utter horror on their faces? And gee, I wonder who’s going to win? I know I hated high school and I know I would never want to go back to high school, even for money and national television exposure.

Probably the biggest kick in the teeth is that the winners of the wedgie competition got an extra member to their clique who would become the Head of Household for the week. For beginners, the HoH is the one who chooses who gets voted out each week. That extra member (for the Athletes, because who else would be best at the art of wedgie?) was a cast member from last season – the king of idiots in my opinion, Jessie, whose muscles seem to have overwhelmed his small brain.

Hmmm… I wonder who’s going home this week? I should make my cash money bet now. it’ll be folks from the Brains or the Offbeat, and probably at least one of my favorites. Just like every other season of “Big Brother,” and even more just like high school. I wonder if the next competition will involve being stuffed in a locker or swirlies?