Thursday, 31 July 2008

Canardies! Canardies!

Wow! It's been a festive week here at The Collective, and so appropriately our next award goes to Vahid from Iron Fist, who wins the Best Buddy Canardie for his awesome drinking and tattoo-procuring prowess at this year's TequilaCon!

Let's here it for Vahid, everyone!

the arrival

I cannot begin to tell you what it means to me to receive this award from the Collective, especially since my prize package included not only the coveted Canardie, but also a round-trip ticket to beautiful San Diego, California, where I was met by the lovely Abigail! from the Collective's West Coast Office. My day included breakfast in Old Town, where I was told that what the Collective giveth, the Collective also taketh away, so would I please hurry up and submit my speech like I had been asked nicely to do several freakin' weeks ago just like everyone else or I could forget about hanging on to my duck. Later I was taken to a remote hillside and told "you won't cross the Collective twice. Capisce?"

So. Where was I? Oh yes: I've been awarded the Best Friend Canardie, for "TequilaCon drinks/tattoo heroism", which is especially gratifying since I don't especially remember being very heroic. In fact I more or less remember the evening going like this:

Vahid: zomg! It's the Collective!

Collective: Hello!

Vahid: Wow! I'm such a big fan! It's so great to meet you!

Collective: (Who is this guy again?)

Vahid: We should have drinks!

Collective: Now you're talking!

[Everyone drinks a round of shots.]

Vahid: Also: I brought you literary-themed tattoos!

Collective: SWEET. We should celebrate this by drinking another round of tequila shots, with tequila chasers, followed by vodka tonics.

Vahid's liver: [whispering] Dude, this is such a bad idea.

Collective: Now let's play Big Buck Hunter!

Vahid: Uh...I'm not so good at this game. Maybe I'll stick to pinball.

Jenny: Yay! That was my best game of pinball ever!

Vahid: That was rough. I'll try my hand at Ms Pac-Man.

Dee-Dee: Now that I have a 90,000 point lead I'll start playing with my left hand.

Sir: Wow, that was pretty humiliating. Listen, I'll tell you what: you don't have to call me 'Sir' if you don't want. Just...stop weeping, okay?

Vahid: Thank you. *sniffles*

[Much later...]

Collective: We have been accosted by a bunch of Brits. Please come deal with them.

Vahid: British dudes, what's your story?

Brits: Give us a chance, lad. Our shiny disco shirts notwithstanding, we are clearly of such advanced age that we will probably never get a chance to speak to such beautiful young ladies again.

Vahid's liver: You know what? I QUIT.

Vahid: Ulp! Sorry, Collective. [keels over and falls into a coma]

...and that's more or less how I came to be awarded this Canardie today. It means all the more to me because, as the above speech may imply, my life is usually characterized by disappointment and under-achievement.

Thank you, Collective! Thank you!

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Welcome back to The Canardies

Proving once more that our love is unconditional, and not based on the amount of attention we receive, we are awarding our next Canardie to Jenny of Run Jen Run for Least Collective Comments! Jenny has weighed in with one (possibly two) comments over our blog's short life, and we just want to say thanks!

Everyone, give it up for Jenny!

(Applause! Applause! Applause!)

In life, most people are rewarded for the things they do. America really seems to love the overachiever. The braniac who graduates from college at 13 and is a millionaire before she can legally drive. The 3-year old who saves his mom’s life by calling 911 when she has a seizure. The two-legged dog that learns to walk upright. It’s all so predictable.

So that’s why I was so amazed and honored that The Collective chose to award me with one of their prestigious Canardies, not for something I did, but for something I didn’t do. I didn’t comment. Well, I did, but just that one time. Frankly, I feel like I commented at least twice, but maybe I just thought about a comment I wanted to leave, then got distracted and never got around to it.Anyway, since I’m apparently a woman of few words, I thought I’d let the pictures do the talking for me.

When I opened up the strange package I received a couple weeks ago, I was overwhelmed with joy.

It was from The Collective gals, and to be honest, I really felt undeserving of their recognition.

But it didn’t take long for the fame to go to my head. The whole blogger scene started to bore me.

Then things got rocky at home. We started fighting all the time. Can-Can (that’s what I call him) told me I was taking him for granted and that without him, I was just some nobody. I didn’t appreciate his tone.

Fortunately, our relationship counselor helped us open up and share our feelings, and I was finally able to express how much I really love this award.

So thanks, The Collective, not only for honoring me with this award, but also for helping me work through a lot of my emotional baggage. I feel like a better person for not having commented on this site.

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Canardies, Day Two!

The next Canardie goes to the sweetest gal in all of internetdom. Please give a warm round of applause to Shari of Eclectic for her Most Comments on The Collective Canardie!

(Speech! Speech! Speech!)

My fellow dwellers of the blogosphere:

THANK YOU for the honor of this award!

Ever since I learned of the coveted Canardie, I have… well…, coveted it. Of course, this was unnecessary, since by the time I had learned of the Canardies, I had already been awarded one. But let no one say I am above doing the unnecessary, because I’m here to tell you that I nearly ALWAYS find time to accomplish whatever is unnecessary, as I believe I’ve demonstrated here.

I’m particularly pleased with this “Most Comment Love Canardie”, being that I enjoy ambiguity. To be specific, does “most comment love” mean that I’m simply a time-wasting sycophant clogging the ethernet with too-frequent drivel; or does it mean that my love-filled comments lack wit and acerbity? Doesn’t matter! Either way, you see, it results in an award for ME… which makes me better than all you other witless, time-wasting sycophants out there. Life is what you make it, I always say.

I have never before experienced the incredible joy that derives from receiving a fuschia rubber duck in the mail, along with Whoppers and Gobstoppers. It has transformed me, AND my trophy shelf, as the following photograph illustrates:

Thank you, Collective!! I only hope that you continue to provide me with daily opportunities to litter the internet landscape with my comments -- such as they are-- for years and years to come.

Monday, 28 July 2008

The Inaugural Canrdies!

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the Inaugural Canrdie Awards! Each year the Webby and Bloggy awards come and go, without any love being shown to people we know. Well not this year, friends. No, indeed. This year, The Collective has decided to honor some of our fellow bloggers with a plastic duck (canard) trophy, and some boxes of candy. Because here at The Collective, you're not just another IP address.

Our first Canardie of the week is the Phone it In Canardie, and it goes to Ashley who Phones it In more than anyone else on the Internet. Ladies and Gentlemen, please join me in congratulating ASHLEY AWESOME!

My Grateful Subjects, er, I mean, Minions. Whoops, that was a typo. What is the word I am searching for here? Sycophants? No. Hmm, what about hoards of unwashed hobos? NO. I think the tiny thesaurus in my brain might be broken. Gonna have to look into that. Oh, wait, I've got it: READERS.

Hello, my little liver dumplings, and thank you -- all five of you-- plus The Collective, who have graciously decided to give me this award, for which I did nothing, really, but act like a glorified sycophant myself. PLEASE, my entries were begging to you all, LOVE ME. So does this mean that you do? Love me, I mean. Okay, maybe I should stop being a jerk here. Instead I'm going to tell you a story. Ready?

Once upon a time there was a little girl named Ashley, and she had chicken legs. Not actual chicken legs, mind you, because that would be weird. Just the metaphorical kind. Anyhoodle, sometimes Chicken Legs used to pray for things like how she didn't want the ceiling fan to fall out of the ceiling and chop off her head, to someday own a library like Belle's in Beauty and the Beast, and to have boobs at least as big as Teri Hatcher's. Guess how many of those things came true? Just the one, actually, seeing as how she's not dead, but you never know. Stuff could happen. So years passed and Ashley grew up, passing puberty, but she still had the chicken legs. Nightly prayer wishes now included that, please God, a boy would like her. Any boy would do. Also, she still wanted the library, but had long given up on the boobs. One day, Chicken Legs discovered the internet, and it was a fateful meeting of harmonious beauty. And this other time, on another day, Chicken Legs went to college and met, oh, wait hold on a sec while I

( Intermission )

I forgot where I was going with this story. Do you guys like cheese? What are your favorite kinds of cheese? Does the idea of brie gross you out as much as it does me? Your thoughts are important to me.

In conclusion, who else is with me on wanting to see Joss Whedon make that movie he was talking about, The Cars That Could Turn Into Robots But No, It's Different. No? Crickets.

But seriously, thanks to Heather Anne, Abigail, Kat, and Jennie for presenting me with this fine award. Now me and my little pink duck are going to take a bath. Toodles.

Okay, actually that was a total lie, I don't take baths. But it was a nice image, right? No? You guys are the worst crowd ever. I mean, I LOVE YOU. Bye.

Friday, 25 July 2008

Phone it in Friday: PRIZES!

I think Mysterygirl! said it best: "Ugh, SO much cuteness this week. I don't think I can take it."

But you guys held fast! You persevered! You made it through the disgusting cuteness! And some of you won prizes!

Winner for Heather! Anne!'s picture: Mysterygirl! "Mah wingspan: let me show u it."

Winner for Abigail!'s picture: Scott! "It runs on renewable energy but scientists fear that, with millions of them on the road, the emissions might become a problem."

Winner for Kat!'s picture: Grad School Reject! "Is that person about to drink my beer? I'd hate to have a cut a bitch during my pool day."

Winner for Jennie!'s picture: Sir! "Oh, you f***ers are gonna pay."

We'll contact you about your prizes. In the meantime, please post some childhood pictures of yourself. Or at least tell us a story from when you were wee.

UPDATE! There's more! We are also awarding Grad School Reject with a prize for Jennie!'s picture. "And it was at this moment, staring at the 4 year old child, that Donnie Darko knew he had met his match." (One of us miscounted the votes. Sorry.)

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Goonies never say die

Jennie OK, here's the thing. I couldn't figure out how to hook up my scanner to my laptop and the scanner at work didn't work and I RAN OUT OF TIME TO FIND ANOTHER SCANNER and so instead I took pictures of my old pictures and uploaded them to Flickr and if you have a problem with it I DON'T CARE. Sigh.

When I was a kid, I was deathly afraid of anyone in a costume. Mickey Mouse, Santa Claus, even Chuck E. Cheese. I'm pretty sure my parents must have bribed me with a pony or something in order to get me to pose for this picture:

Chuck E. Cheese

Do you see the terror in my eyes? DO YOU? The moral of the story is: don't trust strangers, especially grown ups in mouse costumes.

Kids in mouse costumes are OK, though. See:


Wednesday, 23 July 2008

And I don't even care to shake these zipper blues.

This is the best week here at The Collective, the best week because I DON'T HAVE TO WRITE ANYTHING.

shakedown 1979

Caption away, kids, because if you don't caption, you don't win PRIZES. And everyone knows PRIZES are the key to eternal happiness.

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Caution: Photo Features Cowbells


I'm going to blame my parents for this one.

christmas card photo

(Caption it. If we like yours best, you'll get a super special PRIZE!)

Monday, 21 July 2008

Can somebody tell me what kind of a world we live in, where a man dressed up as a BAT gets all of my press?

heather Your Monday just got a whole lot better, because guess what? This week we're having a contest! With prizes! We'll each be posting childhood pictures of ourselves and all you have to do is caption them, LOL or otherwise. We'll announce the winners on Friday, and then PRIZES.

Here's me at eight, circa 1986.

Plus, because I have no shame and a trunk of goodies from childhood that I refuse to throw away, here's me at twenty-nine, circa yesterday. Actually I do have a little shame. Despite Amy's most ardent begging I refused to wear purple tights.

Friday, 18 July 2008

Phone in in, assholes.

To further prove that we're assholes, we forgot to post Phone It In this week. It's been a helluva week at Collective HQ. Kat! turned 30, Jennie! went to see her first ever midnight movie (The Dark Knight), Abigail! flew to San Francisco for BlogHer, and Heather! organized all her Google platforms. Anyhoodle, tell us what makes YOU an asshole, so we can all be assholes together.

Thursday, 17 July 2008

I guess I COULD be more of an asshole

Jennie At first I thought I'd have trouble coming up with five more reasons why I'm an asshole. Not because I'm NOT an asshole or anything, but because I'm lazy and thinking is hard.

1. Don't help me, dammit!

This is a regular occurrence at work:

I get really mad because someone dumps a bunch of work on me and no one offers to help and then later? When someone DOES offer to help me with it? I'm all, "NO THIS IS MY WORK YOU STAY AWAY FROM IT OR I'LL CUT YOU! I'LL CUT YOUR WHOLE FAMILY!"

2. Don't get borned, dammit!

I'll forget your birthday. I might remember it's your birthday sometime during THE DAY OF your birthday, but your present will be late. (Sorry, Kat!) I also send thank you cards late. And Christmas presents. And pretty much anything that goes through the US Mail.

3. Prepare to be judged, dammit!

I'm silently judging you. Like, when you're outside my office, talking to someone about how excited you are to see The Happening*? First, I wonder if you have access to the Internets and then I scoff at your movie choices. I scoff! Did you hear me scoffing? No, you didn't, because I did it silently.

4. Like what I like, dammit!

You don't like The Office/Anchorman/Weezer/etc? How DARE you. Really, you should like everything I like because I know everything and am always right.

5. Get it right, dammit!

Your grammar? I will correct it. Out loud. In front of others. I'm sorry. But I get mad at people if they correct my grammar. Also! If you get a movie quote wrong, I will call you out on it, although, to be fair, I will try and stop myself. Like, last week? I was talking to a coworker at a luncheon and this happened:

Him: I expected more from a varsity athlete.
Everyone: Um . . . what?
Him: You know, that movie . . .
Everyone: . . .
Him: Oh, what's that movie? Sixteen Candles! Yeah.
Me [in my head]: That's not Sixteen Candles.
Him: You know! You've never seen Sixteen Candles? "Don't mess with the bull, young man. You'll get the horns."
Me [in my head]: That's not fucking Sixteen Candles! THAT DOESN'T EVEN MAKE SENSE.
Him: I can't believe you guys have never seen Sixteen Candles.
Me: Um . . . that's from The Breakfast Club.
Him: Oh YEAH! That one guy did all those movies . . . oh, you know . . .
Me: SIGH. John Hughes.
Him: Right, right.

Then my head exploded and I got brains all over everyone. What an asshole.

*The Happening? More like, The CRAPenning. OH SNAP.

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

I hate myself.


6. I'm that girl who shameless flirts to get free stuff. And gets it. I don't know how anyone could have shame about it--I'd do practically anything to get free stuff or discounts or feel as though I'm getting something free or discounted. I'm pretty good at it, and though it embarrasses my friends to no end, they shut up real quick when we to the front of the line, or free popcorn, or samples of not-yet-released products.

7. I'm the lazyest mofo I know, and yet, I still get everything done. If I'm not procrastinating (and really, I'm never not procrastinating), I'm cutting corners, not dotting the i, nor crossing the t, nor really ever on time. Most of the lazy manifests itself in my waiting til the last minute which usually inconveniences a host of people, weakens the end result, and makes my anxiety go through the roof. But I can't stop it because in the end everything still gets done, the majority of the population can't tell I've built sets instead of houses, and I usually get praised for my half-assed results.

8. I use a Mac. I do think it's the best machine with the best operating system, and I do preach about it. I am grating and never ceasing and a little bit judgmental. I'm unapologetic on account of I'M RIGHT. IT'S BETTER. GET ONE.

9. I will steal your story out of your mouth because I already know it, and know it better. I read A LOT of internet, so the chances of me reading something before you are pretty high, especially if you're not a Collective reader. (That's right, you guys have the edge.) A coworker will start to tell me about a "funny YouTube video" and I'll be like, "oh yeah, I saw that, did you know that it's not even real?" Dejected, they return to their offices holding together the pieces of their shattered dreams. I try to curb this auto-pilot response. No one likes their fun facts taken away from them (of all people, I know that) and yet, the asshole inside of me says it's not their fun fact if they didn't know it first.

10. I live in a place that's sunny 350 days a year and I complain when the sun doesn't come out. Last week it was so cloudy I had to turn the lights on in my office because the windows weren't providing enough light to work by. I boo hooed and grumbled on the walk to Starbucks. "I'm going to have to get a HOT drink today it's so COLD out!" "When is the sun going to come out? Today sucks. I'm bored." "It's so dreary. How are we supposed to work if it's dreary?" I wonder if I would have this same attitude if I didn't have to work every day. Maybe if I worked at home (which would never work, see #7) I could use the cloudy weather as an excuse to stay in bed, but that just further cements how awful it is. And do you hear me? It is hardly EVER cloudy here.

(The first five reasons why I'm an asshole here.)


Today is a very special day at The Collective. Why? (M-I-C, K-E-Y, Why? Because we love you.)

Because the eldest member of our team turns THIRTY! Happy Happy to Kat!

Monday, 14 July 2008

Assholery, revisisted

heather Back when The Collective was but a twee sapling, we each listed out for you reasons that we are assholes. 6 months later we've decided to revisit that topic, to paint an even more accurate picture of ourselves. Here are 5 more things you should know about me, in terms of asshole-ism.

1) My dogs are better-behaved than most children, and I don't mind saying so.
I even recently suggested to a woman that she try clicker-training her four-year-old. "When she shuts her gob, shove a treat in her mouth and click," I said. "Click and treat, click and treat, click and treat. It can't hurt."

2) Because I am a Regal Crown Club Member, I always get the secret tattle-tale remote control at the movie theater.
I am not afraid to use it.

3) When people don't use their own bags at the grocery store, I chide them.
Because enough destroying the earth! You can buy cloth bags for 99 cents, and you only need about six for a full load of groceries! Or you can get, like, tw0 of those blue IKEA bags. You can fit the whole of Trader Joe's into those things.

4) If someone forwards me a bullshit email about how Democrats kill puppies, or how important blow jobs are to the success of the economy, or how if I love Jesus and want a trillion dollars from Bill Gates I need forward along the message, I will reply with a rebuttal to every single person on the forward list.
I've lost friends this way.

5) I say the lines out loud to my favorite movies, even if there are other people in the room.
"From the first moment I met you, your arrogance and conceit, your selfish disdain for the feelings of others made me realize that you were the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry."

"Somewhere in the middle of all this I fell in love with you. I'm saying I love you. I'm saying it out loud. Don't say we're not right for each other, because the way I see it we might not be right for anyone else. It can't be any harder to stay together than it was to stay apart. Kate, I need you. I need you."

"Sometimes I wonder about my life. I lead a small life. Well, not small, but valuable. And sometimes I wonder, do I do it because I like it, or because I haven't been brave? So much of what I see reminds me of something I read in a book, when shouldn't it be the other way around?"

"Just as you are? Not thinner? Not cleverer? Not with slightly bigger breasts or slightly smaller nose?"

"Yes, is being my answer. Easy question."

Friday, 11 July 2008

Phone it in Friday: Mooovies

I guess by now you know that The Collective loves nothing more than a good list. We like making 'em, we like reading 'em, we like debating 'em. So, make a list for us, friends, of some movies worth watching. You can use an AFI 10 Top 10 genre, or you can just make up your own!

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Dude, come on, French it up

JennieHere's the thing. I was too lazy to pick my own genre, so Heather Anne picked it for me. I like to pretend I'm above romantic comedies, because a lot of them tend to, well, suck donkey balls, but also because they're all about love and . . . barf.

However. When it's a good romantic comedy, I'm all over it. I'll watch it over and over until I can recite it. And then I'll watch it again. So. There we go. While it was not easy to narrow down my list of 43 romantic comedies, I was able to with some help and LOTS of discussion. In the end, I probably didn't pick the greatest romantic comedies in the all the land (mostly because I haven't even seen them all), but I did pick my favorites. And since I'm always right, my list is the correct one. Anyway. Here are my Top 10 Romantic Comedies EVER and I don't care if you like them or not, because I think they're awesome, so shut up.

10. Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan oeuvre

Let's face it. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan sort of made this category their bitch. Between Sleepless in Seattle, Joe vs. the Volcano, and the UNDERAPPRECIATED You've Got Mail, they're all over the romantic comedy.

9. Chasing Amy

This may seem an unconventional movie to put on a list of romantic comedies, but I stand by it. Plus, someone's nickname is "Fingercuffs" and that's just hilarious.

8. So I Married an Axe Murderer

I LOVE THIS MOVIE. Probably more than I should. I still maintain that this is Mike Myers' greatest movie EVER.

7. The Wedding Singer

I LOVE THIS MOVIE. Probably more than I should. I still maintain that this is Adam Sandler's greatest movie EVER.

6. Groundhog Day

I LOVE THIS MOVIE. Probably more than I should. I still maintain that this is Bill Murray's greatest movie EVER. (Yes, more than Rushmore . . . OK, not really, but I had a thing going there.)

5. Amelie

Je'mapelle Claude (if you got that, I love you forever).

PS: This movie is perfection.

4. Bringing Up Baby

Confession: I have seen this movie a whole lot. If either this movie or The Philadelphia Story comes on TCM, I have to watch it. It doesn't matter if it's 4 in the morning and I have an all day surgery at 8 and NEED MY REST. Don't ask why I might be performing all day surgery. These things just happen sometimes.

3. The Jane Austen Collection - Pride & Prejudice, Bridget Jones' Diary, Emma, Clueless

I couldn't decide between all of these movies and so I made them one category because WHATEVER WHATEVER I DO WHAT I WANT.

2. When Harry Met Sally

When you think of romantic comedies, if you don't automatically think of this movie, I'm afraid there's something wrong with you. Sorry.

1. Love, Actually

Because Heather Anne asked me to. And also because it's like a bajillion romantic comedies put into one.

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Top 10 Sci-Fi Movies.

I don't know why I decided on this list, because as we all know by now, my two greatest fears in life are robots and aliens. And you know what sci-fi movies are usually about? Motherfucking robots and aliens. Strangely enough though, I tend to watch more than my fair share of sci-fi movies. But the vast majority of those movies are mind-numbingly bad. I'm talking terrible. So rather than come up with a list of my own, I'll do what I do best: criticize the lame choices of others.

1. 2001: A Space Odyssey

I've seen this movie about a gazillion times and (a) it creeps me out every time, and (b) I don't get it. Seriously. WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS MOVIE ABOUT?

2. Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope

Back in my day, you know, the days before George Lucas RUINED MY LIFE (I'm looking at you, fourth Indiana Jones movie that I'm pretending was never made), this movie was just called Star Wars. And The Empire Strikes Back was better.

3. E.T. - The Extraterrestrial

Reese's Pieces is the only thing E.T. got right. I hate this movie. (Yes, I am dead inside. I'm okay with that.)

4. A Clockwork Orange

The book was so much better.

5. The Day the Earth Stood Still

I haven't seen this particular movie, but I'm pretty sure "The Day the Earth Stood Stupid" is far, far better. (I am the greetest! Now I am leaving Earth, for no raisin!)

6. Blade Runner

Totally overrated.

7. Alien

Aliens was better.

8. Terminator 2: Judgment Day

The Terminator was better.

9. Invasion of the Body Snatchers

I've never seen this. AFI, you get a free pass.

10. Back to the Future

"Power of Love" FTW!

The end.

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

He's got to like you then forget you the moment you've left his side.

AFI's 10 Top 10 is FULL of movies I've never seen. In fact, the only list that includes more than two movies I've seen is the animation list and I think that's only because I too was a child once. (Not that not-childs can't watch animated movies, I just mean that the whole population of children in developed countries have seen those movies. Because they are awesome.)

I love movies, I swear. I just tend to spend the majority of my film viewing time in the theaters which results in my ability to rattle off the plotlines, opening weekend revenues, and weeks on the charts for any movie released in the past three years, and my inability to describe the plot of any romantic comedy without Meg Ryan on the AFI list. Entertainment Weekly recently published The Top 100 New Classics, a list featuring their favorites from 1983 through 2008. That's a time range longer than my life, so I still can't hold a candle to those lists. Combine this idea, with AFI's mysteriously missing genre and I present:

(from the last ten years)
(that I've seen)
(in chronological order)

The Thomas Crown Affair (1999)

Charlie's Angels (2000)

Ocean's 11 (2001)

The Bourne Identity (2002)

The Italian Job (2003)

The Recruit (2003)

SWAT (2003)

The Bourne Supremacy (2004)

The Bourne Utimatum (2007)

Ocean's 13 (2007)

What are your favorite movies in this delicious genre?

Sunday, 6 July 2008

Up where they walk, up where they run, up where they stay all day in the sun. Wandering free, wish I could be part of that world.

heather A couple of weeks ago, the American Film Institute released their 10 Top 10. It's a list of top ten movies in ten genres. We couldn't let them get away with some of their lame choices, so at the Collective this week we're each choosing a genre and giving you the real top 10. I chose animated movies, because, well, of course I did.

#10: Who Framed Roger Rabbit, 1988

I know it's not completely animated, but animation is the story in Who Framed Roger Rabbit. It was the first film to pair Disney characters with Warner Brothers characters. I kept asking my uncle the photographer how they combined the live action with the animation. "Magic," he always said.

#9: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, 1937

It was the first full-length animated feature to be produced by Walt Disney, and Snow White became the template for dozens and decades of Disney Princesses.

#8: Lady and the Tramp, 1955

This was the 15th Disney film, but the first to feature widescreen cinemascope technology. Plus also, it's practically Pride and Prejudice with puppies.

#7: A Charlie Brown Christmas, 1965

Vince Guaraldi's score for this animated special is the soundtrack of my Christmases, and it's almost as iconic as old Charlie Brown himself.

#6: Finding Nemo, 2003

Finding Nemo has more heart than every other movie released in 2003 combined. It will make you belly laugh and cry, all in the same mouthful of popcorn.

#5: How The Grinch Stole Christmas, 1966

Dr. Seuss's wife walked out of the premiere of that Jim Carey Grinch monstrosity back a couple of years ago. And good for her: it was the worst thing I have ever seen. Nothing could hold up to the 1966 classic. I wouldn't touch any other remakes with a 30 1/2 foot pole.

#4: Beauty and the Beast, 1991

Beauty and the Beast was the first movie to use computer generated animation. The scene when Belle and Beast are dancing, and the camera pans down from the chandelier, that is the beginning of the future of animated films.

#3: Toy Story, 1995

It was the first fully computer-generated animation, and it blew all of our minds. It kind of still blows mine.

#2: The Little Mermaid, 1989

This is the film that ushered in Disney's Golden Age of animation. I've never met a girl who can't sing "Part of Your World."

#1: Wall-E, 2008


Yes? No? What do you think?

Friday, 4 July 2008

Phone It In Friday: Oops, we forgot.

I guess you could say we "phoned it in." Heh.

Here, enjoy this lovely YouTube clip.

Happy 4th, internets!

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Uh, remember when you were with The Beatles?

When it came time to choose interviewees this week, I was all, "I choose Ashley!" and I'm not going to lie to you. It was mostly so I could ask inane questions about The Office and The X-Files and have someone answer them with the respect they deserve. And I was not disappointed. Except for when she didn't know what SNL sketch I was referring to, but I've never seen Battlestar Gallactica, so I think we can call it even.

1. Who is your favorite character from The Office?

That would be Dwight K. Schrute, ultimate brown-noser, and owner (the co-owner! With Satan!) of the Hotel Hell. Check in time now, check out time never. And the sheets are made of fire!

2. Why?

You know, that's a really good question because I think that it says more about me than anything else. I mean, what is a favorite but something that touches you in ways that are personal and kind of random, and that no one else can really ever understand? Dwight lives in a world of his own creation, kind of like a kid that never stopped playing pretend. But at the same time, he's a functioning adult, and that fascinates me. He's also unabashedly nerdy, and I think I have kind of a thing for that. His dream vacation is going to Mordor and climbing up Mt. Doom, his favorite television program is Battlestar Galactica ("Starbuck is the perfect woman"--yes, Dwight, she is), and he believes that vampires are real. He is extremely loyal to the people he loves (Micheal, Angela), and he has some of the best one-liners I've ever heard. What's not to love? I think -- and I'm almost afraid to type this because Dwight is kind of crazy -- that Dwight and I are soul mates, or maybe kindred spirits would be the better term. I'm not a suck-up or anything, but I can appreciate when someone has enough confidence in the things that they love to just not give a shit what other people think. It never even crosses his mind that his life and his choices aren't the best ones possible. That's what being a nerd is.

3. Is it Jim? If it's not Jim, why not? Jim is hot, you know. And tall. Tall and hot and dreamy.

Let's just say if Jim Halpert were a real person, I'd either be with him or stalking him right now. I did name my car after him, after all. But if I'm being honest here, I think he's too normal for me (but very, very pretty). Whoever the poor schmuck is that I end up with, he's gonna be a weirdo, I can tell you that right now.

4. Moving on. David Duchovny is also tall and hot and dreamy. Discuss.

OH GOD. I spent the entirety of my adolescence fantasizing about Fox Mulder. Talk about your nerds. This guy is the ultimate nerd; he's hard core. And holy bean burrito, is he beautiful. The things that mouth did to those sunflower seeds, and he was funny. So funny! I think I've never really stopped being in love with him, actually.

5. On a scale of one to ten, one being "whatev" and ten being "HOLY SHIT", how excited are you for The X-Files movie?

That would be HOLY SHIT plus 1000. I'm a rather excitable person, but having The X-Files come back to life is like having a piece of my childhood revived. I'm a big fan of things that are awesome not ending -- whenever I get really involved in literature, i.e. The Lord of the Rings, Buffy, Harry Potter, most of the time the horrible tears that I cry aren't for the story, but because the story is ending. I hate when things end. So basically this is like some kind of summer miracle, and I'm getting to see people that I'd never thought I'd see again. It's a pretty awesome feeling.

6. Remember the last movie? How Mulder and Scully totally almost made out and then that fucking bee got in the way? Dude, how pissed were you?

I totally remember the last movie, and I totally remember how fucking pissed I was. The funny thing is, I wasn't a fan of The X-Files until I saw the movie. One of my friends dragged all of us to go see it for her thirteenth birthday, and I was actually really mad because I hate scary movies and aliens and I had no interest whatsoever in watching a movie about them. Imagine my surprise when I fell in love, and became super X-Phile nerd, surpassing the friend that dragged me there in the first place. I believe that is called irony. Actually, my hatred for that bee scene didn't really make me truly angry until I bought the film on VHS. By then I'd had a chance to catch up a little, and my reaction went something like this: "!(*!@(*&!)(!&*!$)(*$!)*&^@#%)(*#@&)(#*&(#*%&" ::takes a break to throw things at the TV:: ")@(@%)(*%)(#*$%)(!(@#^$*&#@@%@$!$!$!%)" By the way, I would just like to confess to the internets how much it frightens me that 1998 was ten years ago.

7. I don't think it would be overreacting to eradicate all bees from the planet, do you?

Not at all. Actually, I'm really terrified of bees, even before I saw the movie with the virus-carrying ones that like to interrupt people who are about to suck face. I don't know about anywhere else, but Arizona summers during my childhood were full of them. Every time my sister and I would go swimming, some stupid a-hole bee would start dive bombing us, and I would have to hide under the water until it went away or get out and run screaming to the door. And then there was that killer-bee scare in like 1991, where all the bees were supposedly migrating to the U.S. from Mexico in swarms, and were going to kill us all. I'm pretty sure seeing that on the news is what lead me to have the same terrifying nightmare over and over, where a bee the size of my mother would chase my dog around trying to kill him, and then end his a-hole killing spree by slamming his stinger through the wall right over my bed as I was sleeping. As a consequence of this dream, I slept with my pillow halfway down my bed and as far away from the wall as I could get it for about six months. Also, did you ever look at a bee up close? Their butts pulse! But wait -- if we got rid of all the bees, there wouldn't be any honey or any flowers? I really like those things. Maybe we could train the flies to do it; put them to some good use for once.

8. If you could make everyone in the whole entire world read one book, what book would it be?

This is an evil question, so I'm taking the easy way out: Harry Potter. It makes me so unbelievably frustrated when I meet someone who won't read them, or even worse, someone who has and doesn't like it. So, as a present to those with open minds, and as punishment for those without, Harry Potter it is.

9. What if I don't want to read that book?

Then I would lock you in a room with a rabid squirrel, and I would laugh at you.

10. Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica.

YES. That quote is one of the many reasons that I love The Office.

11. Um, right. My question is, why should everyone be watching Battlestar Galactica?

Um, because it's fucking awesome? If any of you have been reading my blog for the past year, you know that it is practically my life's goal to get everyone I meet to watch this show. Would you like me to list the reasons? It's smart, beautifully shot, has lots of beautiful people (seriously, guys, BEAUTIFUL), robot sex, normal sex, Mary Fucking McDonnell, awesome space battles, intriguing and flawed characters, mystery, drama, suspense, religion, mysticism, humor, politics, and a gorgeous score written by the highly underrated Bear McCreary. Actually, think about something you love, and Battlestar Galactica probably has it. A lot of people don't even give it a chance because it's Sci-Fi, but don't be fooled. It's just pretending to be Sci-Fi. Actually, it's the best political-drama-action-romance-suspense-terror thing you'll ever see, that just happens to be set in space. I'm doing a horrible job of promoting this, so I guess I'm just gonna have to end with a plea: PLEASE WATCH THIS SHOW.

12. I've never seen it. Can we still be friends?

I'll have to think about it.

13. Do you ever wonder if all the people on the internet are imaginary?

Well, no. But it's a funny thought. I have, however, wondered where the internet is. I mean, where do they keep it? Did you guys see that episode of South Park? Where the internet breaks and they have to go find it? I love that episode. "Over Logging," I think it's called.

14. Don't worry. They're not. Not all of them anyway. This isn't a question. Sorry.

I'm glad we are friends. (I guess I just answered #12.)

15. Remember when Chris Farley used to interview celebrities on SNL?

Don't hurt me, but I don't really watch SNL, and I've only seen one movie with Chris Farley in it. The only skits I remember seeing are the ones where he's the Chippendales guy with Patrick Swayze and where he's really angry in somebody's house and I think there's a van involved by a river, but I'm not sure.

16. Does this interview remind you of that?

Hold on a minute while I go YouTube this . . . okay, I'm back. I couldn't find it, but I'm assuming my answer is supposed to be "yes." Can someone help me out here? I think it's important for me to see these interviews.

17. How long did it take you to read the final Harry Potter book?

Are you ready? This is epic. I read the first chapter that night, I'm not sure how I went to sleep afterwards, but since I'd worked the Barnes & Noble midnight release party that night, I didn't get home until three. That's actually probably how I got to sleep -- sidenote, worst night of my life. Then I woke up at nine, took a shower, blogged about how I didn't want to start it because then it would be over, and then I probably started around ten. I read straight through until like five or so, at which point I vividly remember I was at the part where Harry and co. learn about the tale of the Deathly Hallows. I remember this because I was making chili in a pot and sitting on my kitchen floor. Then I had to leave! I'd promised my friend Breanne and her fiance that I would go see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix with them, thinking I'd be done with the book by then, so I packed up my copy of Deathly Hallows and put it in my purse and took it to the movie with me. All through the movie, I kept putting my hand in my purse to make sure it was still there. I don't know what I was thinking, that it was going to get up and walk away? Whatever, it was probably for the same reason that I felt the need to bring the book with me in the first place. I sped home after the movie and read straight through (with the exception of a freak out to my roommate right in the middle of the Battle of Hogwarts) until I finished, in tears, at approximately 10:45 PM. Then I woke up the next day and read it again.

18. I had to put the book down at the end because I was crying so hard I couldn't see the words. How many tissues did you go through while reading that book?

I have this thing where I don't use tissues because I'm all manly. Uh, wait. Actually, I just wiped 'em off with my hand, because I'm a lady. Whatevah. The point is, I cried A LOT. I started crying about one hundred pages from the end and didn't really stop until like an hour after I finished the book, and no one was awake to comfort me. Most of it was incoherent sobbing and rambling, which would rise and ebb with whatever was going on in the story at the time. I think those of you who've read it know what parts I'm talking about. Is it sick that this is making me want to read it again?

19. Heather Anne thinks bears are scary and will eat your face. I think they're are cute and cuddly and I would like one for a pet. Thoughts?

Hmm, I think if I ever actually saw a bear I'd run away, so I'm gonna agree more with Heather Anne on this one. (Jennie, you should read John Irving if you haven't already, because he has a serious things for bears, too.) On the other hand, I think bears are hilarious. Most of this probably has to do with the one hundred times I watched The Great Outdoors with my father while growing up. You guys should watch that movie.

20. Have you ever posted anything to The Internets that you've regretted?

Yes. The whole first year of my blog, where I was lame and an idiot? I regret that very much. Also, this one time on my birthday where I wrote about an incident in my past that stirred up some hurt feelings and caused a lot of drama, culminating in a really nasty comment left on my Facebook wall for everyone to see. Moral of the story, that I learned the hard way? Don't forget that anybody could be reading your blog at any time, no matter if you haven't spoken to them in years, and that even the truth can sometimes really hurt people's feelings.

21. You live in a magical place where it never snows (it doesn't snow there, right?) . . . what's that like?

For the most part, no, it doesn't snow here. We have lots of mountains where it snows, but snow in Tucson, and in Scottsdale where I grew up, is practically unheard of. In fact, it's very deserty and hot here, since it's a desert. Sometimes when I get in my car in the afternoon, my face melts off and falls onto my lap. It is currently 109 degrees, to be exact, and it's not even noon. Except sometimes we have these weird weather things where it does actually snow a little bit, and people here go APESHIT. Like, what is this white stuff falling from the sky? Two years ago, we had this extreme cold front and it snowed for about five hours here in Tucson. It was basically chaos. Everybody in my apartment came outside to play, and a ton of us idiots put on our swimsuits and got in the hot tub, and then my roommates and I drank hot chocolate with the door open while watching Love Actually. The next day was chaos, too, because all our cars were iced over, and we were very confused about how to take care of that. It was like community bonding, the Tucson Blizzard of '07. Good times. Look,
I have pictures!

22. What is one question you'd like everyone to answer in the comments? Go ahead. Don't be shy. Make the internet your bitch.

"Make the internet your bitch" just gave me a very interesting visual. Hmmm, this is hard (that's what she said). How about, since this entire interview is full of the nerdiness, what is something that you are unabashedly nerdy about? It could be tacos or Joss Whedon or even a country (Heather Anne, I'm looking at you . . . ) Also, I love all of you. Thanks for the interview, Jennie and The Collective. You guys are like, my heroes. THE END.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Oh I must have been a dreamer, and I must have been someone else.

When it was decided at Collective HQ to turn the microphone on you lot, I yelled and screamed and held my breath until everyone gave in and let me interview one of my most very favoritest bloggers in the entire internets, Ms. Eclectic herself, Shari. You see, she's part of a super-secret crime fighting organization, so she was understandably in very high demand. But since I'm the only one who has been lucky enough to spend time in her glorious presence, I got dibs.

Here are the lies my dear Ms. E told. You know, when she wasn't busy running around faster than a speeding bullet and leaping tall buildings in a single bound and whatnot.

So, tell me, how long have we known each other now?

Well, letsseee… I started stalking reading you after finding you through One Child Left Behind, which is now -- sadly -- on permanent hiatus. You left comments there that I identified with, so I followed you and lurked awhile at your old site. That would probably have been the summer of ’05… so 3 years?

What she really means is: 3 years.

And how did we first become acquainted?

I believe I emailed you. I had this confession to make, and you were the nearest priest.

What she really means is: I emailed you.

What was it, exactly, that drew you to me?

Your magic, magic words.

What she really means is: Pity.

What is your favorite thing about me?

Aside from your ability to melt my soul and pierce my heart with your writing? Aside from the creativity that causes you to craft origami waterfowl and silken catnip mice? Aside from your tender, tender soul and your “cold, black heart”? Aside from your tendency to capture an entire experience in the fleeting moment of a photograph? Aside from drinking me under the table and making me laugh? Well, okay, aside from all of that, it would have to be your ability to wonder. To find, to believe, and to communicate wonder.

What she really means is: Your cold, black heart.

If you could pick one thing, and one thing only, what would be your favorite of everything I've ever written?

I object to the question. SO NOT FAIR! Everything that you write becomes my favorite as I read it, and that is a true story. But… in the spirit of actually trying, and not copping out here, I will choose this. And though you did not ask me to provide my rationale, it is this: because I love when you engage, at least occasionally, in your own extraordinary life.

What she really means is: Good God, could you BE any more boring?

If you could take me on vacation anywhere in the world, where would we go?

My vote would be Nicaragua – to the (as yet) undeveloped beach near San Juan del Sur. Because I think maybe you haven’t been there yet, and besides, the food’s incredible. Also? The effect of the essentially greedy nature of humans is harder to detect in a subsistence culture like that, and I kinda dig the perspective.

What she really means is: You don't deserve room service.

How would you entertain me when we got there?

You’d bring a book or 12, as would I. Plus there’s drinking, and beaching, and the ever-entertaining spectacle of me trying to communicate to the residents en Español. Please do not underestimate the entertainment value of that. I’m told by previous traveling companions that it can be highly amusing.

What she really means is: You'd better bring a whole lot of books because I ain't talking to the likes of you.

If you could cook me one supremely awesome dinner, what would you make?

Oh sure… like I’d cook for YOU? HA! However, if we assume that you’re unavailable and the only means of sustaining nourishment involves me cooking, then I’d very likely make grilled salmon filet with pesto linguine, and steamed asparagus with a basil vinaigrette. The most awesome part of it, however, would be the wine.

What she really means is: You don't deserve being cooked for. Have some arsenic with your wine.

How would you spend your ideal day with me?

You know? I just realized I don’t actually know if you drink coffee. But, no matter, I’d drag you along to my favorite, favorite coffee shop, Café Mela, where you can get tea or an amazing fruit smoothie if you don’t partake of the bean. We’d go from there to the little used bookstore that I love, because it’s little and sincere and bookish and lovely and I want you to see it. Then we’d ride bikes out through the orchards and vineyards, have lunch with friends – H!A!, Jennie! and Abigail! obviously, although I’m all for including as many as will come along. And since this is all make-believe, I can defy the space-time continuum, and I will be included in the Thanksgiving Miracle of ’07 for the afternoon/evening.

What she really means is: I'm just using you as a means to hang out with the much cooler members of The Collective.

Finally, why do you keep ditching me every time we make plans to hang out?

HA! I’m intimidated because you’re prettier, smarter, younger and more talented than I.

Hey -- everyone has a talent, mine just happens to be bailing on plans made. I am supremely gifted in this regard, as countless people over the years can attest. I think it has mostly to do with my imagined self being ever-so-much more capable and organized than my actual self. That, plus a husband and children who really believe they have a claim on my time. Whatever. :)

What she really means is: Because I don't like you.