Friday, April 29, 2011


Just got a notification that Sirius/XM is changing the numbers on their channel lineup. Truth be told, I listen to more podcasts these days than satellite radio. But they offered a handy tool to allow you to construct and print a guide with the new channels, showing ONLY the channels you want to see.

Over on my beloved boob tube, every DVR I've had, of both the TiVo and DirecTV variety, has allowed you to create a custom on-screen channel guide for easier and more discerning channel flipping. Whenever I get a new box, that's one of the first things I do after setting up my season pass list. Why the fuck would I even want to scroll through endless "pages" of home shopping, soccer, kids and religious programming if there's no way in hell I will ever click one of those channels? It's like I'm betraying my thumb, and making it do extra work for absolutely no reward.

When I visit another house, and see them scrolling through channels and I see the flotsam and jetsam of broadcasting, I wonder if they know this option even exists. Or, shudder, they actually watch some of these channels. The mind reels.

I'm awed at how far we've come in my lifetime with regard to entertainment options. (I can even remember three networks and rabbit ears from my childhood!) I hope I live to see the day when radio and TV programming is all Randian and a la carte. I have no problem paying, even handsomely, for the stuff that I WANT TO WATCH. Even though I can easily 86 it from the guide, it still frosts my nads that Calliou and Pat Robertson even come though my digital pipeline.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Ghost in the Machine

By now, almost anyone with twitter has probably played around with That Can Be My Next Tweet. I know I did, and it's sorcery, I tell ya! What it lacks in syntax and correct grammar, it more than makes up for in accuracy and humor. Here are a few from my twitter feed (with comments):

I'm game! OMG, y'all. the landing. They're all makes sense now. I'm worried about Firefly.
Excitement, southern twang and concern about Firefly. It's as if twitter existed in September of 2002.

Just watched that Nationals game in their databases. Happy Birthday Richard Dawkins.
Being where I am, I watch a lot of MASN/Nationals games in order to actually watch the Braves. Apparently, I'm Neo and can jack into the Matrix to see them now. Can I use my godlike powers to move Jason Heyward up in the batting order? Oh, and of course, happy birthday to one of the few beacons of reason in our increasingly deluded culture.

That's the Buffster, but I'll get home can't remember fretting about REM Don't got back and very!
I'm worried again, but at least I can't recall it. And suddenly, I'm hearing my favorite band sing "Don't Go Back To Sunnydale."

Fringe was thoughtful, honest response. That word irks me at the beginning.
Another geek show reference. I'm sensing a pattern. Irked, I am!

EST? Or CST? You HAVE seen all been a TARDIS on tonight. Featuring Mr. Blue Sky, my largest knowledge.
Does an Eastern or Central time zone really matter if you have a TARDIS? Didn't think so. And apparently, I am the world's foremost authority on ELO songs.

Just finished participating in her to be a dream? Hmmmm. If camping, I'm worried about Angel S3 last.
Again, I'm WORRIED about my geeky genre television! I hope it doesn't get canceled, dammit! (And if I'm "participating in her," I wonder if she knows? Or maybe she's just like Mal in Inception. I can say with authority that my dreamscape wouldn't include camping).

Truly laid the title. No spell-check at work, and then again, he's awesome in another state.
Evidently, I'm prone to typos in the office. And I was kinda awesome in another state.

Bill collectors looking for TOS shows. Sketchier rumors/urban legend for Hamlet.
Dammit, Jim, I'm a doctor, not an accountant! And did the Danish Prince say "bloody Mary" three times into a mirror?

Exceptions? Maybe the Pink Floyd. I understand current plots. Did an acid trip.
Okay, an acid trip certainly helps you understand Pink Floyd. Howdy, Sid!

Kinda like Caprica though I do we Yanks treated the only Holly Holiday. A new Showtime series with?
Perhaps Showtime is starting a new show in England, with Gwyneth Paltrow as a killer robot intent on destroying humanity. Talk about typecasting.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Winter is coming. In nine days.

Fantastic "making of" piece from HBO. Great intro to the world for those that don't know much about Game of Thrones, and excellent vision of how the world is being adapted to TV for those who do.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

In which I talk about, surprise, television

I recently guested on the "Confessions of An Internet Addict" podcast with the charming and welcoming Stephanie. You can find my particular episode here. Or, if you want it in iTunes, I believe it should be here.

I virtually met Steph on the twitter, and we seem to share a love for all things TV. So naturally, we talked a lot about the tube - likes, dislikes and upcoming shows we're eagerly anticipating. No major spoilers for anything (unless you were catching up on The X-Files and hoping the mythology all made perfect sense at the end. In which case, uh, enjoy the standalones. They're really good).

She was a gracious host, and this was my first podcast. I had a great time, and didn't sound too much like an idiot. This was also the most prolonged exposure to my own voice I've ever had. And while I'm not Janice from Friends or The Nanny, I do have to wonder....where the hell am I from? What exactly is that accent, other than marinated in whiskey and Marlboros? (Although, either through careful editing, or my game of "quiet mouse" while recording, you didn't hear the ice in my glass or my zippo like you always did with Ron Moore podcasts).

Anyhoo, give it a listen and let me know what you think.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Little Things

Sometimes, the little things can make you happy. Sure, taxes are high, the politicians are all pandering nutjobs, the economy is in the shitter, we just bombed another country, gas prices are unspeakable, cancer still exists and real driving, spawning, voting human beings actually watch Jersey Shore. But my new glasses fit perfectly, so I guess it's all okay now.

I got some sweet new frames, and updated my prescription. When the lenses came back, they were a bit off, so we got them recut, and they worked just fine. However, during all the adjustments, one of the temple frames had been lowered by a fraction of an inch, so one side sat on my face slightly higher. I wore them this way for a week, constantly pushing the right side up so they would be "even." No one but me could have noticed, but it drove me fucking crazy. I finally found time to go back and get them adjusted, and now all is right and balanced in the world. This sates my OCD and makes me immeasurably happy.

Also on the list of silly little things that spackle the holes in my black, cynical heart:

The vet where I put Mulder to sleep sent me a little clay paperweight with an impression of his paw. It's an odd color, almost like a Carolina blue, but it has a proud spot on my desk.

I just bought a new laptop for home. Ordered additional RAM, too, to self-install. And a nifty USB docking station. And a wireless printer. Upgraded to Office 2010 and Win 7 Pro. Installed a virtual machine running XP, to use legacy software. Moved all my documents and files and everything went swimmingly and without a hitch, except, of course, for iTunes. Good god do I hate Apple and their software. The clunkiness, lack of flexibility and walled-in bullshit surrounding their products is why I will never EVER use an iPhone. (And I say this as someone who had Macs for his first three computers). Finally, though, I was able to fight through the nonsense and get my library restored and synched, playlists, lyrics and ratings intact.

I also installed a new, spiffier wireless router. If you're looking for an inexpensive, superior-performing router for home, I highly recommend this one. They don't sell in big box stores, but all the glowing reviews on amazon are right. It's fantastic. (Plus, I contacted customer service via email to get copies of the manual and set up guide prior to its arrival and they responded rapidly. Very friendly and efficient). Reconnecting all the various devices (laptops, printer, blu-ray, BlackBerry) was a snap. Even better, I named my home network "TARDIS."

I can't sing the praises of Peapod enough. Click a few things, keep your regular shopping list online, and magically (okay, for eight bucks) groceries just show up at your door when you want, with no parking, no buggies, no cramped checkouts, no kids screaming for candy, no lugging bags from the car to the kitchen. Even some of the items I wouldn't have thought to be suitable for home delivery, like deli cut sandwich meat and butcher cut and trimmed steaks, have been absolutely top shelf. Heaven.

Baseball season started, filling the post-football void. Welcome back, Braves. (Also nice: listening to the Braves game with hometown announcers at work - where streaming is blocked - via the MLB At Bat app on my CrackBerry. Well worth the $14 price tag).

Geeky t-shirts, like this one, that just arrived at my door: