Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The quirks of Key West

Key West is one of my favorite places to visit.

Sure, it's got sun, sand (kinda) and lots of bars but you can find those things in many parts of the Caribbean and Mexico.

What makes Key West special is its flavor. It's eccentricities. Its take on life which is a little sideways. Key West is like a drunken uncle who has slept with your girlfriend and your buddy and has told your mother about it. In some weird way, it comes across as charming.

I've gone to Key West a couple of times over the years and every visit has been different. I've got my stories but you ain't gonna hear those. Instead, I've posted some pics and videos which give you an idea of what it's like to be in the Conch Republic.

Duval is the main tourist street and if you happen to be driving down it around 8pm or so on a Monday, you may have to avoid a gaggle of drunken tourists being led by a drag queen singing "Dancing in the Street".


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Every night, Key West celebrates the sun disappearing beneath the horizon at Mallory Square. This is a very touristy activity but I love it. (I'm a die hard tourist at heart). There is a Jamaican singer who has been in the same place for at least the past 10 years and there is nothing like listening to his beautiful voice as the light disappears and the boats pass by.


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And if you're ever in Mallory Square at sunset, you do not want to miss Dominique, the cat man. His show is a mix of incredible cat tricks, vaudeville and well, too much sun? (You know what I mean if you've ever seen him). You can check out his website at http://www.catmankeywest.com/.

All together now. OSCAR! OSCAR!


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And if you take the ghost tour of Key West (highly recommended by the way because you get to shout "You're DOOMED! to any local that heckles you), you will learn about Key West's possessed doll, Robbie. He's three feet tall and is as creepy as all heck. He was owned by Gene Otto (given to him as a child) and probably came from Haiti. Even through his adult life, Gene blamed anything bad he did on Robbie's activities, giving the doll some pretty bad mojo. Eventually, Robbie was donated to the East Martello museum, where, according to the curators, he continues to cause havoc.

You're supposed to ask to take his picture. I didn't. My camera has yet to explode.

There are so many other fun places to explore in Key West. It's a little tricky to get to (either drive for a couple of hours from Miami or take an expensive flight) but the trip is well worth it. I can't wait to go back.

More pics to follow ...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead

Living in L.A. has certain benefits ...

The restaurant wait staff are better looking than average.

You can be completely crazy but if you have money, you'll still get people's respect.

Wearing jeans and a t-shirt are considered "dressed up".

And let us not forget Movie Premieres!

Yes, movie premieres. The first look at someone's blood, sweat and tears. Red carpet, stars, paparazzi ... yes, it's all there, making everything look more important than probably what it is.

Last Friday I was invited to a movie premiere. Okay, I use the word "invited" rather loosely; I paid ten dollars. And it wasn't the premiere; it was the 9:45 showing. There was no red carpet but there were cast members dressed up in costume. And the writer/director was there. Eli Roth (writer/director of the Hostel series) was also in attendance so I did see a celebrity (of sorts). There were camera crews hovering around but they didn't have any of the "paparazzi panic" as I like to call it. (See some paparazzi chasing after a star and you'll know what I mean).

So what was all this for?

POULTRYGEIST and it was freakin' awesome!!

This is what we were exposed to:

*gratuitous dancing topless lesbians
*men in thongs doing the Riverdance
*deep fried testicles
*splattering red, brown and green bodily fluids from all orifices
*demonic chickens who like fisting humans

and general overall mayhem.

Way better than Indiana Jones but truthfully, I came out feeling a little queasy.

And I was in no mood for chicken.

I have added the trailer below but if you don't have a strong stomach, then you may want to skip it.

Don't tell me I didn't warn ya.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Indiana Jones and the plastic skull he bought for $2.50 at Wal-mart

The picture above represents my thoughts on the latest Indiana Jones adventure.

It was baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad.

What in the hell were these ex-geniuses thinking?

I started off by being disappointed and then I got mad. I was so mad that I couldn’t sleep last night and I was still awake at 3 a.m.

Raiders of the Lost Ark is one of my favorite films and the two sequels were almost as good. When I first saw Raiders, I felt like I had gone on an adventure. I didn’t just admire Indiana, I wanted to be him. He was athletic, handsome, witty, smart and fearless, except for those darn snakes. He was sexy yet rough around the edges. In short, a perfect hero.

Fast forward some twenty years later and Indiana just seemed, well, tired. But not just him, the adventure was tired, the dialogue was tired, even the soundtrack couldn’t muster the oomph it once had. They added in Shia LaBoof but that was just a marketing ploy so that the teen girls would show up.

Unfortunately the real problem lay with the script. The plot is completely fucking ridiculous and there is none of the sharp action, crackling dialogue, fun romance and memorable set pieces that we expect from Spielberg and company. I can’t imagine a committee reading this script and saying, “We love it! Let’s dig up Harrison Ford and make a movie!”.

Ugh.

Don’t mess with the memories, Mr. Spielberg. You can make E.T. 2 and trash it for all I care, but Indiana Jones deserved so much more than what you gave him.

But, I must remain positive. There is some value in almost anything so I’m going to flip this all around and write about things that I learned from this debacle.

Warning: THERE ARE SPOILERS. (But the movie is already rotten so look at it this way; I may be saving you $12)

THINGS I LEARNED FROM INDIANA JONES AND HIS CRAPTACULAR ADVENTURE

· You can survive a nuclear blast by hiding in a fridge. Even though you are blown a couple of miles away, you will be able to hold the door closed from sturdy handles on the inside.


· Prairie dogs can live in the desert.

· If you need to fire a professor from your college, you should raise your voice and do so just outside his classroom so that all his students can hear.

· Crystal skulls are very portable since they are made of indestructible plastic. They are very handy for scaring natives, keeping man-eating ants away, making archeologists crazy, and opening portals to other dimensions.

· When you tell your insane friend to go get help, you should keep in mind that the only help available will be the same people you’re running away from.

· If you’re straddling two army trucks, it is more important to protect your crotch with your hands than worry if you’re going to be stabbed with a saber or shot with a gun.

· Swinging on vines like jungle boy is as fast for travelling through the jungle as racing trucks.

· If you have no clue what to do next, drive over a cliff. A very sturdy tree will be available to gently lift you down into the water below.

· Riding over waterfalls in a truck can be a lot of fun. Remember to give the precious skull to the crazy old man who will have no problem holding it while he plummets, oh, let’s say A MILE.

· Ancient caves are well illuminated to allow for easier, more efficient travel.

· Standard issue natives can burst out of walls when needed to protect their temples.

· You should bring your annoying friend with you while you search for dangerous lost cities. This annoying friend may call you Jonesy, nearly get you killed and steal artifacts but you should trust him 100% at least until he pulls a gun on you. When his life is in danger, you should do your very best at trying to save his traitor ass.

· An alien is very ungrateful when you give him his head back. It will suck up your friends into other dimensions and make your eyes spit fire.

. There are spaces between spaces. This is where ET lives.

· A good way to destroy any temple is LOTS and LOTS of water.

· A water spout is like a primitive elevator. It will gently lift you and all your friends out of harms way while a massive alien ship is taking off.

· Despite having no discernable chemistry or even a romantic interlude, you can still fall in love with the woman you ditched years ago and have a happy wedding.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Universal Fun

Today I decided to go over to Universal Studios which is located about ten minutes from where I live. I have an annual pass so it doesn't cost me anything to go watch tourists being tourists.

This is far more entertaining than any of the rides.

The first stop is the red carpet. This is so that you can feel like you're a celebrity no matter what your socio-economic status.


The guy (I think it's a guy?) has his eyes closed which is ruining this great picture with Spongebob.

Boy, are the girls ever going to hate their friend when they get back to Korea.


This is the set from War of the Worlds. They recreated a plane crash in a suburban neighborhood, which is apparently quite messy. According to our guide, who was full of fascinating info, a real plane was used.

Shrek and Donkey. Donkey is looking up Shrek's skirt and Shrek seems quite happy about it.

The new Simpson's ride! No, I didn't go on it.

The wait was over an hour and although I love the Simpsons, I thought I would wait for a slower day.

While I was waiting for the Studio Tour tram to start, I decided to take a picture of this guy's head.

I was bored and I was pretty sure that the guys next to me didn't speak English.


Marilyn was even there. She looked very pretty in pink.


A little adult humor in a theme park geared towards kids. Tsk tsk.


Last weekend, the backlot at Universal burnt down. Unfortunately King Kong went up in flames as well as many facades.

Although the guide said that the Studio Tour would not change, KING KONG was sorely missed. I guess they didn't want to show a giant charred ape.

Shame!

This kid looks so damn smug that he can stick his finger up Matt Damon's nose.

His papa must be so proud!


These are two cars doing the Macarena.

Why?

Probably because they can.

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This is Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives.

I've never watched one minute of the show but damn, it looks like a nice neighborhood.

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And how about a video of the War of the World's set. I was disappointed that I didn't see any body parts.

They should have put a head or a couple of kidneys lying around for more realism.

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