December 14th, 2010

Peter G

Book 'Em, Dano

Here's an interesting meme, courtesy of pinkmossrose :

The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books listed here. Bold those books you've read in their entirety, italicize the ones you started but didn't finish or read an excerpt.

1) Pride And Prejudice - Jane Austen
2) The Lord Of The Rings - Tolkien
3) Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4) Harry Potter series - Rowling
5) To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6) The Bible ALL
7) Wuhering Heights - Emily Bronte
8) Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9) His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10) Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11) Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12) Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13) Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14) Complete Works of Shakespeare
15) Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16) The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17) Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18) Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19) The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20) Middlemarch - George Eliot
21) Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22) The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23) The Scarlet Letter - Nathaniel Hawthorne (my favorite lit)
24) War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25) The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26) Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27) Crime And Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28) Grapes Of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29) Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30) The Wind In The Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31) Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32) David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33) Chronicles Of Narnia all
34) Emma -Jane Austen
35) Persuasion - Jane Austen
36) The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37) The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38) Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39) Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40) Winnie the Pooh - A.A. Milne
41) Animal Farm - George Orwell
42) The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43) One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44) A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45) The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46) Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
46) Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47) Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48) The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49) Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50) Atonement - Ian McEwan
51) Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52) Dune - Frank Herbert
53) Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54) Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55) A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56) The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57) A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58) Brave New World - Aldous Huxley

59) The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60) Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61) Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62) Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63) The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64) The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65) Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66) On The Road - Jack Kerouac

67) Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68) Bridget Jones’ Diary - Helen Fielding
69) Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70) Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71) Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens

72) Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
72) Ulysses - James Joyce
76) The Inferno - Dante
77) Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78) Germinal - Emile Zola
79) Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80) Possession - AS Byatt
81) A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82) Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83) The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84) The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85) Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86) A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87) Charlotte’s Web - E.B. White
88) The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89) Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

90) The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91) Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad

92) The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93) The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94) Watership Down - Richard Adams
95) A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96) A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97) The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98) Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99) Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100) Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Hmm...not too shabby....

Deer John

I have a tendency to bury the lead, so let me start off by saying, I'm fine, no injuries, my car is fine, no damage, I'm just pissed.

(looking at a deer head on the wall)
  "That's quite a trophy."
"Yeah, my dad killed that for me when I was a little girl."
"Was he a hunter?"
"No, a bad driver."
--Sledge Hammer!

You know, this is going probably going to be my most controversial blog post ever.  You're probably thinking, What can possibly be more controversial than writing about politics, religion, and Obamacare?


I fucking hate deer.

Deer have the best PR agents in the world.  Every time you see them in movies or on TV, they are standing in the meadow, or eating things from people's hands, or getting the epic treatment that Bambi provided.  "Doe eyed" is an expression of innocence.  People see deer as sweet and innocent things, like unicorns but they actually exist.

But when you live in a rural area like I do, deer are a nuisance.  Other animals have adapted to mankind, like foxes (see next paragraph for a hilarious example), but deer?  They wander around like they are stoned, barely aware of their surroundings, even as a car is closing in on them with high beams on and horn blaring, then they stop and just look at you like they are trying to see through the haze.  I nearly got broadsided by a deer WHILE I WAS ON MY GODDAMN BICYCLE!!!  And if you hack one off, they are fierce and dangerous attackers.  There is nothing gentle and harmonious about them.  I fucking hate deer.

(There was a TV documentary showing how foxes evade dog packs.  It showed the running through the stream and the running along a fence to evade.  Then it told a story from England, where hunters saw a fox in a field and released the hounds.  They noticed the fox ran one way into the forest when, usually, foxes run the other way because that's where the streams and fences are.  The hunted fox ran across an electrified train track.  The hunt pack hit the third rail and eight dogs got juiced.  The remaining dogs, having no concept of electricity, are standing around in confusion and don't notice the train is coming.  Splat!  Ten more puppies got offed.  At some point, the fox saw and figured out the mechanics of the train and tracks.  In other words, this wasn't evasion, the fox actively plotted the dogs' demises.  And people wonder why I'm so enamored with foxes.)

This morning, I get up and fire up The Angry Red Dragon, my trusty car.  I get on the way to work, and just before the ramp to the highway, cars start slowing down.  On the right side of the road are two deer, walking along and about to set foot on the road.  The other car swerves wide.  I slam my horn and slow waaaaaay the fuck down.  The deer is about halfway on the road when it looks right at me like a sleepwalker.  It then goes across the road like someone moving out of your way at the grocery store -- a little faster than usual, but clearly doesn't see why you have to bother them.  The other deer is just standing there.  I start driving between them, and the Dragon is halfway past the second deer when it suddenly decides to try crossing the street WHILE MY CAR IS IN FRONT OF IT.  BAM!  I hear the thud of it walking into the back half of my car.  I pull over and look.  No damage to the car, no scratches, not even the dust layer from the snow and frost has been disturbed.  I check at lunch just in case it was something I couldn't see in the dark, and nothing.  The Dragon is absolutely none the worse for wear (there's a lot of hollow space in the doors, creating loud acoustics.  One of my dipshit family members and I went to a store.  I'm parked and waiting, windows down and arm hanging out.  He's coming in to a parking spot.  Just as he stops, I slap my car door.  He shifts into reverse, pulls to the other side of the parking lot, and doesn't come anywhere near there.  I still haven't told him what really happened).

Just walking into a car right in front of you?  I fucking hate deer.
Peter G

You Did A Great Job, Now Get Out

It's official:  Jon Favreau will not be directing Iron Man 3.

One source is saying Favreau left because, with all the tying in with other Marvel properties like Avengers, Captain America, Thor, etc., he wasn't sure what to do with the movie and decided to bail (some of the SHIELD stuff in 2 felt tacked on, so I can certainly buy studio interference).

The other is saying that Favreau is now too expensive for the cost-conscious Disney film company, and he was encouraged to step aside.

It's kind of a shame that Fav's encounters with the comic book world have been so bad.  Don't forget the Iron Man comic book series that he quit in the middle of because he was sick of the fanboys online bitching about what he was doing.  And leave us not forget, he took a second-tier Marvel character and made him a huge public persona.

Favs is now doing Magic Kingdom instead.  Between a new director and a muddled idea of incorporating EVERYTHING in the Marvel universe, I'm not sure IM3 is going to be all that great anymore.  I know I'll miss Fav's steady hand at the helm.