Monday, January 24, 2011
Thursday, January 20, 2011
By the end of The Golden Globes Sunday night, you had a good sense of the animosity being directed at Ricky Gervais for his barbs and witty commentary that made fun of nearly all the stars there. Celebrities were attempting to make sly comebacks to Gervais’ one-liners, but they were failing miserably. A couple examples: 1) Gervais mocked Philip Berk, President of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, by saying, “I just had to help him off the toilet and pop his teeth in.” Berk came out and fired back, “Next time you want me to help you qualify your movie, go to another guy.” 2) Before introducing Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, Gervais ran down a lengthy list of award-winning movies Hanks has starred in and then continued, “the other presenter is Tim Allen.” Hanks and Allen fired back.
Hanks: We can recall back when Ricky Gervais was a slightly chubby but very kind comedian.
Allen: Neither of which he is now.
The celebs’ comebacks weren’t funny, it’s the fact that they were seriously offended which made it funny. Why was Allen offended? Next to Hanks, Allen may as well do commercials. The celebs didn’t get the irony in attempting to send a barb back. News flash: you are paid actors, not paid comedians and Ricky Gervais is a paid comedian. What do you expect? For him to be kind? These shows need a comedian to make the night entertaining, to lighten the mood, to mock the one of many shows Hollywood puts on for themselves to celebrate their achievements and greatness.
This just in: Celebs, you aren’t funny. Gervais is. You’re easy to make fun of, especially when you make crappy movies. Get over it.
Monday, January 17, 2011
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Sunday, January 09, 2011
Awarding mediocrity. There were 35 bowl games this year. I didn’t watch most of them, but from what I can tell they mostly sucked. This should come as no surprise. What kind of games do you expect to have when you put a 6-6 team up against a 7-6 team? Bowls used to be huge rewards for teams at the end of successful seasons, but now you only have to be at .500 to get in? Really, it’s despicable. And what it boils down to is the NCAA making more money off of its indentured servants. More bowls mean more money and who is opposed to that? Well, for one, I am.
It used to be fun to stumble across a bowl game on TV. You once had the guarantee of the two teams playing in said bowl game of actually being good. Now, not so much. I was about as excited to catch a bowl game over the holiday season as I was to find an infomercial for the Shake Weight.
Of course, classics like the Rose Bowl proved to be good games still, but enough with the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, etc. Had Wyoming won two more games, there was talk of a bowl game. Are you serious? Wyoming was piss-poor this year and putting them in a bowl game would have done the same thing as most of the other games did, it would have just contaminated the airwaves.
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
I want to sit down and churn something out about 2010. I want you to read it and be astonished at what you’ve read, be in dismay about the year I had because maybe it was boring, but I made it sound like so much more than that.
2010 was anything but boring, but I don’t know if I can convey that anymore. As it did like the year before, 2010 started off with a trip to Florida, but through January, February, the birth of my nephew, and a conference championship my mind was with my MFA applications to ten schools. I had labored over them for almost a year and I felt like I applied to the entire spectrum of writing programs out there. Starting in late February, or was it early March, the rejections started to trickle in. First, was Wyoming. Then I can’t remember who came next. But I do remember there were nine more and the agony of going to the mailbox every day was sustained until the last letter arrived in April. I took it—the last letter—up to the apartment with me. The blinds were drawn. It was dark. I lied on the couch. I didn’t weep. I didn’t tear up. I yelled. I fucking yelled.
March is a blur. I had the whole month off. I don’t even know what I did. I wrote about the rejections. I did an annual spiel on the Oscars, self-published of course. There was a power outage and I wrote about, writing, what I believe to be, some of my best words in 2010. On the way to work one day I pulled over and threw the key to the Longmont house into Lake Michigan, cursing it in the air and hoping some feelings would sink to the bottom of the lake with it. And then Kate and I went to Wyoming and Colorado. It was cold and snowy and being in Laramie was tough knowing I wouldn’t be going to school there in the fall.
I wandered aimlessly through April, wallowing in failure (a little like I am now, but hey, that was a huge chunk of 2010). I not only coached practices, I did practices. I threw myself into them, destroying my body and finding out that I can still be fast in the pool. When I do my best in sports I tap a vein of aggression and I get lost in it. I had plenty of fuel.
The venting continued in May, one of the most stressful times of my 20s. We had made our plans for the next two years and they were denied from us. In the middle of it all we went to Mexico to escape it. We were successful in that, but the stress was waiting for us the day we got back. What next? What now? Then I went to Colorado and spent a few nights with good friends looking for our new home. Then, a wedding in May for two people in love. But it was tough and weird at times, stages of the healing process. Getting everyone together again felt right and wrong, stages of the aging and living process. Instead of a strong bond among all of us I was acutely aware of an aging history held together with feeble attempts to reestablish community. Honestly, I thought the shit was going to hit the fan this week. It didn’t so much. Some things went better than expected and for the other things, well, words went unsaid and feelings unshared, traits once rare among this group.
Like Milwaukee knew we were leaving, it threw us thunderstorm after thunderstorm in June, ephemeral, but breathtaking and humbling exhibitions of power. I searched everyday for jobs. I didn’t land one and started to doubt the wisdom in moving back to Colorado. My Mom visited us one last time in Milwaukee. Kate and I started watching Lost this month on Hulu and we never looked back. Concerning movies and TV, Lost was easily the highlight of 2010 for us. It was outstanding and our devotion to it was respectable.
July started with another vacation. This time we were off to California to see friends married, to see family, and to breath in some salty air. And then we were back in the Midwest for a few more weeks of packing and thunderstorms, one of them giving us seven inches of rain in three hours. Imagine if California got that? In our final days in Milwaukee we shed tears, took a lot of pictures of our apartment, and welcomed my Dad to Wisconsin so that he would help us move to Colorado.
I blogged twice in August. We settled into our new home, not the home we thought we would be settling into, but we thank God every day it wasn’t. We drove up our first fourteener. We went to Wyoming. The West opened its arms for us and we basked in its warm, dry, sunny climate. The proximity of friends and family helped ease the joblessness on my part. And after working for a week, Kate was offered a full-time job.
I wrote a love letter to Milwaukee in September. I witnessed Boise St. give Wyoming an ass-kicking. We finished Lost, with a blitz of 3 episodes, plus a two-hour finale, in one day. And then I got a job and we started P90X.
October: I worked some. Spent some time catching up with friends in Colorado. We had visitors. Colorado proved to be as beautiful as ever. Life went on.
A lot of people voted Republican in November. I didn’t. Are you kidding me? We spent our first Thanksgiving as a married couple with my parents and grandparents. Kate worked through the holiday and it didn’t seem relaxing for her at times, but my busy holiday schedule started at 4:30 the morning after Thanksgiving. November was warm.
In December I’ll tell you now, publicly, that I celebrated a private accomplishment. The month flew by with busy work schedules and the time to relax and celebrate our Creator was upon us in a matter of hours. We had a new camera to document it and the years ahead. The wounds sustained earlier in the year have partially healed, yet I still sometimes find in me a crushing doubt, chanting, “Failure, failure,” at me every time my hands rest on this keyboard. In the waning days of 2010, Kate’s family joined us as we welcomed 2011 into our lives, a year that can’t possibly contain in its 365 days what I want it to contain, but I will greet its every sunrise and toast its every sunset in search of it.