Back when I was a kid, Blogs were called 'imaginary friends' and were only slightly more pathetic.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

This Week's SFist Reprint

They say that ‘Beer is dear but liquor is quicker’. Well, Barrespondent Drew has found that if you just combine the two it becomes an express train with no brakes, careening through stations leaving your fellow passengers bewildered and late for work. Commuting problem solved!

Being a city full of more transients than your average Greyhound station, San Francisco needs places that you can count on. After all, if you’re coming back from a 5 year stint of trekking the Himalayas/Grad school/prison, the last thing you need screwing up a big reunion with your buddies is to find that the bar you’re meeting everyone at has closed down or turned into a tapas restaurant or something.

Luckily, for as much breakneck change as there is here there’s an equal number of places that can be counted on to stay exactly the same until the bloodline of the original owner is broken. Places like these you can safely make plans to meet at 5 or 10 years from now and rest assured that the same bartender, patrons, stains and smells will all still be there.

The Latin American Club on 22nd & Valencia is a place we only seem to go to when someone’s either getting ready to leave town or have just made their triumphant return. The perfect atmosphere for large groups of well-wishers/parole officers, The Latin is, as far as we’re concerned, the alcoholic Ellis Island of San Francisco.

Even with the sad and untimely passing of The Red Man (ask your hipster parents, kids) a few years back, the Latin has still maintained its happy and divey vibe. Whether you choose to camp out in the booths by the window or up on the stage, you’ll find The Latin to always be a comfortable place to hang out with any size gathering.

The bartenders at The Latin have always been top notch. Whether it’s a Cosmo, Margarita or your simple shot with a cheap beer back, the friendly attitude remains the same. So don’t worry about mixing it up and aggravating your drinksmith, this isn’t that kind of bar. And as crowded as we’ve seen it here, waiting to place a drink order has never been a problem here. Efficiency and politeness have always been front and center at this place.

So check your calendar and find out when your buddy’s gettin’ back from walking the Great Wall. Might as well make plans now to meet him at The Latin American Club.

Liver… Out!!


Saturday, July 30, 2005


Leading the league in Haitian afros for 4 years running!

I know we've been complaining as of late that there's nothing going on in sports, but I'd just like to offer a complete retraction of that statement.

After all, the Sixers re-signed Samuel Dalembert over the weekend! The same guy that always wins that bike race in France won again in a finale so thrilling that they actually stopped keeping time!! Some old guys played golf in England! And two middle American baseball teams duked it out for the bragging rights of being the best team on Interstate 55!!

Once pre-season football starts and Larry Brown does what's been predicted for the last 3 months and signs with the Knicks, I don't know if we'll be able to contain ourselves!!


Friday, July 29, 2005

Like Trapped Pennsylvania Miners, But Much, Much Lower

Conservatives think this woman and Ann Coulter are HOT. But you know what, they're NOT. Here's a slightly less 'pimped' photo where some of the 'glamour's been taken out of 'glamour shot'.

Hooray! We have a couple of new winners for 'most disgusting spin by a right wing pundit'. You would think some of these assholes would be in China by now with how low they've sunk.

Both of these brilliant comments come in the wake of the Brazilian man who was shot to death in the London Underground. Totally unable to concede that this may be the downside of racial profiling and that shooting all the 'darkies' to make sure you get all them Moo-hamm-ed lovin' terrorists just might not be the greatest idea ever, these two scumbags try and turn this around to their political advantage.

First up is disgusting Coulter clone Debbie Schlussel, who is so painfully ignorant and misguided that she makes Michelle Malkin look like Mahatma Gandhi. Here's a section of her empassioned brilliance:

Everyone is all up in arms over the mistaken killing of the Brazilian man in the London subway, Jean Charles de Menezes. By "everyone," I mean all the liberals, Islamists, and haters of our war on terror--the ones who think we should just lay down and die in the name of civil liberties.

But the fact is, the man lived in Britain for three years, and, reportedly, still DIDN'T SPEAK ENGLISH! That's why he didn't heed police calls to stop.

Good stuff! No one could follow that, right? Well of course I'm wrong. Next up is King Dipshit of Hypocrisy island himself, Rush Limbaugh, who is either still mainlining the OxyContin or has got himself off of it by developing a severe drinking problem. Here's his compassionate reaction (sorry about the ALLCAPS);


So there you have it. Either the guy really was a terrorist (or perhaps 'turning into one' like the Captain of the basketball team was turning into a zombie right before Chief Wiggum shot him) or else he deserved to be shot because he didn't learn english.

Congratulations Rush and Debbie, you've proven once again that no matter how sick we may think you are, there's always another level you can kick it down to.


Thursday, July 28, 2005

Thursday Meth Lab Blogging


Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Heartless Greed, Made In The U.S.A.

Tom DeLay is a disgusting human being, totally devoid of any sense of decency. He is a walking example of why the Libertarian pipe dream of an 'open and free market' will never work as long as there are greedy, secretive, lying, plutocratic shitbags like him walking the earth. If people could open their eyes past the price tag at WalMart and Old Navy and actually realized what a horrible piece of human garbage this guy is, he'd have been strung up and left to rot in the town square a long time ago.

But you probably knew that already.

While America continues to focus its ridiculous amount of media on important issues like Michael Jackson's busy hands and some blonde redneck girl that did body shots off some trustafarians and walked into the ocean in Aruba, evil men with tiny dicks like Tom DeLay continue to get away with shit that actually fucks up thousands of people's lives.

Over the last 20 years or so, American companies (WalMart, The Gap) have run what are essentially forced labor camps in the Northern Marianas islands. Chinese and Philipino women are charged 5 or 6 thousand dollars and told that they are going to go work in America. They are then shipped off to these islands, kept behind barbed wire, forced to have an abortion if they become pregnant, and usually end up having to become prostitutes to pay off their debt because they're only paid about a buck an hour. The greatest thing about this whole scam is that since this is a U.S. territory, clothing made here can proudly display the 'Made in the U.S.A.' label on them.

Heavily involved in this project for at least the last 7 or 8 years, you would think that DeLay would have been totally exposed as the morally bankrupt, money-hungry asshole that he is. Unsurprisingly, however, the Oily Fuckwad spent the last 8 years actually BEING PROUD of this program, referring to it as his "perfect petri dish of capitalism. Like my Galapagos Island.". He's successfully blocked every Congressional attempt to regulate it, and this awful bait-and-switch program continues to this very day.

This kind of shit should serve as a wake up call for every poor-as-fuck churchgoing hick that only votes republican because they'll keep those dang homos from gettin' married and making God mad. Can't you get it through your skulls that these people are using you and your beliefs to get really, really rich? And despite what they've told you, they're never going to give any of it to you. Big businesses don't just wake up one day and decide they've got enough money and they can stop now. For fucksakes Christian right, What part of FORCED ABORTIONS do you agree with? If DeLay is willing to do this in an American territory, what's to stop people like him from doing it in Alabama or West Virginia?

So what is on the front pages today? Doonesbury dropped from some midwestern papers for using Bush's nickname for Karl Rove, we've a got some real 'breaking news' that could be titled Gosh it's hot, and, oh goody, more about the poor girl who'd have trouble making the PennySaver announcements section if she was anything but blonde and white.

Good job, America, good job.


Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Just Cut 'Em Up Like Regular Chickens

A good time was had by all at the SF 3-min FilmFest last weekend. Jeff's hosting was an excellent combination of embarrassing and hilarious, Camille glided around the room like a seasoned professional artist-babysitter and I tried to blend into the scenery and act as effete and disinterested as possible. After all, that's what the real artists do, right?

In the interest of no one (except the one guy who will want to fight me later on about something I said here that I will have totally forgotten by then), here's a complete rundown of all 22 films screened. You know, for posterity's sake, and it's the only way we'll learn to be more selective of films shown in the future.

The films will be rated with the Gunslingers system of Cadillac, Steak Knives, or You're Fired.

One Happy Moment - Supposedly 'random' people selected off the street who then close their eyes for awhile to drum n' bass. You're fired.

Beer Goggles - Guy gets drunk and has different memory of previous evening. Only been done 493,000 other times. You're fired.

Being Frank - Documentary about sign carrying looney Frank Chu. Slightly exploitative, but interesting. Steak Knives.

Lying Lips Redux - Bad sound recording turned this into old black and white footage with mumbling. You're fired.

Pete's Feet - Abstract video art with feet. Not my cup of tea. You're fired.

Chow Baby - Incredible special effects and porn star looking actress turn this film from simple story of a snake eating a woman into head-scratching waste of time and money. You're fired.

Cathy's Commute - Girl jams to Michael Jackson on the bus. A lot of fun until the very end when the music continues to play for 30 seconds after the movie has faded to black. For a second, I thought it was going to be like an Andy Kaufman bit and the music would just go on until everyone got pissed off and left. Steak Knives.

Re-Deconstruction - According to the program, edited without listening to the sound. Look here, your laziness doesn't impress me. You're fired.

Closet of Satan - Funny little childhood slice of life story. Thankfully provides the first laughs of the entire evening. Cadillac.

Wildly Sophisticated - Tapes beauty seminar and makes fun of it. Now we're cooking with Crisco! Cadillac.

Cat's Eye - Absolutely painful look at someone's cat, unless the part about the cat dying at the end was a joke, in which case it's brilliant. You're fired, but there may be a Cadillac waiting for you in your driveway.

Kearney and Pine - The kind of thing you would need deep hypnosis to remember seeing five minutes after you saw it. You're fired.

Slinky - People in Slinky outfits do street art. I must've missed the deeper meaning because this won third place and I'm pretty sure all I saw was people in industrial flex-tubing groping each other. Steak Knives.

Small Time - Ah, what would a film festival be without the '10 minutes too long, I saw Pulp Fiction a hundred times, good dialogue just means saying 'fuck' over and over again, and I have a strong woman in my movie so how's about a blowjob' entry. Was probably only about 12 minutes (which is still 9 too long) but felt like a feature. You're fired.

Runner - Audience winner. Children talking in French with English subtitles and a guy distance running. Describing it makes it sound like the most pretentious thing ever filmed, but it was done so well that it actually worked. Cadillac.

Glockenspiel - Cleaning woman plays music and steals xylophone. Meh. Steak Knives.

One Bad Night - 10 second animated thing about getting shot with a 'poo-gun'. Brilliant. Would've been my pick to win. Cadillac.

23,000 - Alternately funny and scary, with bag-faced characters. Lynchian. Cadillac.

Searching For Billy Ocean, Vol. 1 - I recuse myself. Voted 2nd best by the crowd, but they're mostly idiots. Pontiac.

Lewis not him again - Like the snake movie, a rather pedestrian idea dressed up with special effects to make it puzzling and pointless. You're fired.

Scentsitive - Professional comedian entry by one of the guys from local improv troupe 'Killing my Lobster'. Funny, but I expect more from professionals. Steak Knives.

Wacky Blooperzz!! - You know when you have really bad diarrhea, and you've just spent 20 minutes on the can, and you start to get up but realize it's not over yet. This hideous turd of a film damn nearly soiled everyone's pants before they could get their ass back onto the bowl. Talk about ending on a down note. I consider it to be an act of incredible mass politeness that this film didn't cause a mob scene at the box office demanding refunds. To give this movie 'You're fired' doesn't do the phrase justice. If you haven't guessed by now, this was my entry, but I still stand by everything I just said.

So there you have it. 21 people busting their asses for no payoff only to have some snide, bitter loser (who was too lazy to come up with something on his own and just made a blooper reel out of his friends movie) shit all over them. But as Homer Simpson once said, "If they don't want people invading their privacy and rummaging through their garbage, they shouldn't have tried to express themselves creatively."


Sunday, July 24, 2005

This Week's SFist Reprint

Fighting the forces of snobbery by ordering top shelf Single Malt Scotch with a Bud Light chaser, Barrespondent Drew continues his quest to prove Thomas Jefferson wrong when he said ‘All men are created equal’. After all, some men are very drunk, and will fight you for almost no reason.

A lot of the bars in this city are designed to transport you somewhere else. Like a good movie or Disney ride, their goal is to make you briefly question where you are. Whether it’s to make you think you’re in jolly old England, a tropical paradise, or Oktoberfest, these places make careful use of décor (and the helpful effects of booze) to give you a little vacation from the neighborhood you’re coming there from.

But nostalgia’s a funny thing. What’s deep and meaningful to one person can be utterly pointless to another. Every once in awhile a place is opened that makes you wonder, “Who wanted to go back there?”. Perhaps it makes a world of sense to the folks that opened the place up and to a few of their friends, but it’s hard to envision throngs of people beating a path to its door dying to relive this particular memory.

The Connecticut Yankee, on 17th and Connecticut in Potrero Hill, is an incredibly realistic recreation of an average suburban bar in any city from Ansonia to Wilton. The outside design, the long tables inside, pitchers of Sam Adams, and Patriots and RedSox gear from top to bottom give this place an eerie realism that’s only appreciated by someone who actually lived in Connecticut.

Now some of you may be saying, “So what, there’s tons of New England themed bars in this city. What’s the big deal?”. Very true, but there’s a world of difference between New England and just Connecticut. New England represents all kinds of stuff. From the Lobsters up in Maine to cheese in Vermont to Cape Cod and Boston in Massachusetts, it represents quite a large chunk of Americana. Connecticut, however, represents a couple of Indian casinos and a plot of land that you have to drive through to get from Massachusetts to New York. It’s the land of Martha Stewart, Joe-mentum and crooked game show contestants.

But enough cracking on the Nutmeg State. Truth is, we kid because we love. The Connecticut Yankee may be puzzling to someone who’s never spent summers in West Haven scarfing down lobster rolls or traveling from city to city just to find out what they call big sandwiches there (Could be a hoagie, wedge, roll, sub, grinder or poorboy), but that’s the charm of it. This is a theme bar that transports you to a place you had no idea you ever wanted to go to but should. It’s a big fat slice of the suburban northeast right in the middle of San Francisco, which is weirdly interesting when you think about it.

Service and beer selection are average at the Yankee, and if they were any better it would take away from the authentic Long Island Harbor feel of the place.

So take a trip back east by stopping off at the Connecticut Yankee (especially this fall when Pats games start up). It’s like all the fun of Stamford without having to drive through Bridgeport to get there.

Liver… Out!!


Saturday, July 23, 2005

PTE; They Took My Sports Away!!

It's been a slow couple of weeks over at PTE, so here's a post from a couple of weeks ago. More of a cry for help really.


No wonder Wilbon and Kornheiser usually take about a month off this time of year. Ain't a damn thing going on but the rent.

My heart goes out to poor slobs like Michael Smith and that pompous guy from the Kansas City Star that hosted last Friday. It's gotta be hard to fill a half an hour with takes on the Tour De France and whether or not Kenny Rogers should pitch in the all-star game or open up another franchise of roasted chicken restaurants.

Since all hockey's played indoors in cities with no winters now anyways, why not bump hockey season up to start in mid-june? I gotta think that any remotely watchable sport has a chance of succeeding now. After all, if your only competition is MLS, the WNBA and the exciting buildup to the baseball Allstar game, how badly could you do?


Friday, July 22, 2005

Laziest Post Ever

Kind of stuck for anything, so apart from mentioning to the 4 or 5 local readers that don't already know about it that the San Francisco 3 minute Film Festival is this Saturday and that they should be there or kindly be square, I might as well list off the first ten random things that come up on my wife's I-Pod (which I helped program, so it's kind of like my random ten).

It's basically the musical equivalent of digging through my toenails and asking you if you think I should see a doctor;

Zero 7 - This World

Super Furry Animals - End of The World

Cocteau Twins - Pearly Dewdrops drops

Chemical Brothers - Block Rockin Beats

Superjesus - Down Again

Gang of Four - To Hell With Poverty

Mando Diao - God Knows

Happy Mondays - 24 Hour Party People

Prodigy - Breathe

New Order - Temptation

Alright? Alright. Special thanks to the sucka MCs of Liebography for the pants-filling pic.


Thursday, July 21, 2005

Other Folks Now Eligible To Work In The White House

Now that the President has made it clear that you have to actually have been CONVICTED of a crime before he'll consider firing you, I'd like to present a list of people that are therefore perfectly acceptable candidates for some of the most powerful positions in the world.

OJ Simpson. Never convicted, so perfect to head up a taskforce on violence against women.

Claus Von Bulow. Also completely exonerated and therefore more than qualified to become the new head of the FDA.

Kenny Rogers. Still innocent, so should immediately be made baseball commissioner.

Ken Lay. Why not make him Chairman of the Federal Reserve? After all, he couldn't have done anything wrong if he's not in jail, right?

Bill O' Reilly. Should probably team up with Pat O'Brien to run the FCC.

Arnold Schwarzenegger. Obvious choice for anti-steroids program.

And finally, Michael Jackson, what better choice to head up 'No Child Left Behind'.

And a special thanks to our President, whose complete inability to stand up to the hubristic, power-mad cretins that his daddy picked to run the country makes him look like a bigger spineless lying sack of crap every single day. Keep it up and eventually you'll make Nixon look like Abe Lincoln!


Wednesday, July 20, 2005

The Edgefield Inn. Now With Floor Joints!!

You in here for some marijuana?!

Formerly a home for the mentally... disadvantaged (aka Looney Bin), the Edgefield Inn just outside of Portland is a brewery, winery, bed & breakfast, golf course and wedding facility run by Rip city's answer to Ben and Jerry, the McMenamin brothers (pictured right).

Over the last 20 years or so, the McMenamins have taken unused old buildings (old theatres, churches and schools) and turned them into combination brewpub/movie theatres, themed bars and overall 'Phish-lovin' paradises like the Edgefield. Everything is decorated in that 'Goddess is Alive', 'Ren-Fair' style of art, and it's difficult to go into any of the small little bars, restaurants and tasting rooms at the Edgefield without hearing the Grateful Dead 'entertaining' the staff that works there. In their Bio, Mike and Brian McMenamin say, "Trendy decor doesn't attract a lasting clientele. It's the other way around.". Well guess what, hippies, your decor 'is' trendy. It's unoriginal juggling jester crap that appeals mainly to the 50-something tie-dye crowd. If that isn't trendy, I don't know what is.

Surrounded by trees and nature, it is a really pretty spot, and it's nice that well groomed landscapes like this aren't only reserved for snooty country clubs, but I just couldn't help but feel sorry for everyone working there. Slinging drinks in some dark, buggy little cave to blank-eyed hippies while a mixtape plays the same repetitive guitar noodling over and over and over isn't just my idea of hell, it's like some sort of super advanced hell that you have to do cruel, televised experiments on puppies to get into.

Anyway, as a friend of mine was checking out, she looked down on the floor in the lobby and saw something. Was it a toothpick? A wadded up receipt? Why no, it was in fact a carefully packed and rolled joint. As nonchalantly as she could, she picked it up and then *poof*, we were gone, barrelling down the highway playing banjo getaway music and laughing our asses off at our good luck. Now this may seem like a shitty thing to do, but what does decorum dictate in a situation like this? Lost and Found? Waving it around yelling, "Who dropped their hippie lettuce?". Nope, she did the right thing.

Having planes to catch, she smoked some and left the rest for me and the wife. And, I gotta say, it was the best 'found' stuff I'd ever had. Mind you, I'm no connoisseur, but if there's one thing Oregon hippies do well, it's acquire decent THC.

So if the guy who dropped his joint ever googles "Edgefield Floor Joint" and reads this, thanks for the free shit. Hopefully you'll forgive me and my friends for not having the hotel staff get on the P.A. system and announce your missing bone like a lost kid at the mall. And furthermore, how lazy are you that you can't even pack your joints away so that they're not in danger of falling out of your pocket in the hotel lobby? Hopefully you learned a valuable lesson.

I know I promised yesterday that this would be an 'only in Oregon' type of story, but this really could've happened in Vermont as well. Now who wants pizza?


Tuesday, July 19, 2005

If Loving Portland Is Wrong, Then I'm OK With That.

Having lived in Portland, Oregon on two non-consecutive occasions (once for two months and once for two years), I sort of knew what to expect upon our glorious return for a wedding there last weekend. I say sort of because time and hindsight have a weird way of warping stuff. When the reason you left a place is comprised of a thousand little reasons, time has a weird way of flushing all those little memories completely out of your system. One day you wake up and say to yourself, "Why did I ever leave there? It was a nice enough place, I've got lots of friends there, the people are nice and it's slightly less expensive than the San Francisco Bay Area.".

Needless to say, the second you get back there, all the little things rear their ugly heads leaving you in a constant state of slapping your forehead and saying, "Oh yeah". I won't try to recount all those things now, but there's a few things I should jot down just in case I forget them all again.

The first thing you notice about Portland is how unbelievably SLOW everything goes. And not a Jamaican island, Mexican village kind of slow either, but rather the kind of slow that happens when you ask a senior citizen what they have on their I-Pod. Sure, they'll be friendly as hell when they try and answer, but they'll mostly just furrow their brow in a poor attempt to try and piece together the words you just said. Another good way to imagine it is to picture an entire city trying to figure out what they want on their pizza after smoking three bongloads of hydroponic crippler weed. Sure, everyone'll be laughing, but you ain't gettin' no pizza anytime soon.

Next is Portland's insecurity. The city's collective psyche is constantly akin to small time stock traders going through a market crash. Portlanders believe that if they constantly walk around talking about how great their city is, that no one will panic and eventually it 'will' be a great city. As was once said about the stock market, "If everyone keeps buying no matter what, the power of our delusions determines the size of our profits!".

And lastly is the unfortunate reality that Portland is surrounded by, infiltrated with, and at least on the state level, controlled by some of the most racist, intolerant rednecks you could ever hope to meet. For every super cool way liberal hippie and trucker hat wearing emo-kid, there's 4 or 5 down vest wearing hayseeds just dying to vote against gay rights, crank up the country music and talk about how dangerous the northeastern part of town is (because it's got like 20 black people in it). And whereas this is the case with just about every city in America, Oregon's 'Cletus community' is seemingly much more entrenched in the city itself.

But it's not all bad, not at all. Compared to 99% of this country, Portland's got a lot going for it. It's definitely one of the 'easiest' places to live anywhere. And stay tuned tomorrow for the 'Legend of the Floor Joint' that may be the greatest 'only in Oregon' moment I've ever experienced.


Monday, July 18, 2005

Monday Juiced Up Freak Blogging

In transit today, so enjoy this picture of Mark McGwire. No, it's not a caricature, that's an actual photo of Mark at his 'roid peak when he could turn his head completely around and all it would do is slightly rip his shirt.


Sunday, July 17, 2005

Staggering Through Fog

Having argued before the bar such cases as ‘Shut up v. You Shut Up’, and ‘That’s my seat v. I don’t see your name on it’, Barrespondent Drew continues his distinguished service of finding out which bars are worth a lengthy trial and which ones should be given a ‘suspended sentence’.

There are in fact, too many bars in the Mission. We know, this is total blasphemy and we can’t believe we’re saying it either, but c’mon, there’s not nearly enough distinctively different ‘scenes’ to warrant the ridiculous number of clubs, taverns, venues and dives strewn about 16th and Valencia.

Sure, just about everywhere in the Mission is crowded on weekends, so we suppose the number of bars is sort of called for. But are there that many remarkable differences between most of these places? Wouldn't two or three 'mega-bars' serve the same purpose? And what about the people like us who prefer going out anytime ‘but’ the weekend? We’re left with 50 near empty bars that need to cater to whatever the Friday/Saturday crowd want just to stay in business which winds up creating an entire neighborhood where virtually every bar is the same. Local flavor is replaced with the same pre-set internet jukebox and surly bartenders that are miffed that they didn’t get the ‘money’ shift and have to serve two or three diehards on a Tuesday night.

Luckily, there’s one or two places that don’t seem to follow these rules and try to keep things as local and non-weekend focused as they can. Read about one after the jump.

The Elixir on 16th and Guerrero (formerly Jack’s Elixer) has been the ‘lonely stepchild’ bar on that particular corner for years. Sometimes local dive, sometimes Boston College sportsbar, and sparsely attended throughout a lot of the summer since there’s little to no sports going on, The Elixir is a great place to hang out in The Mission if you don’t really want to ‘hang out in the Mission’.

Featuring a decent selection of beers and a killer Sunday ‘make your own Bloody Mary’ bar, the Elixir’s staff is usually very helpful and attentive. Combine that with great people watching out of the row of windows along the wall and it all makes for a very nice daytime drinking experience.

Some of the locals at the Elixir can get a little loud and obnoxious, but for the most part they’re harmless and tend to congregate near the front part of the bar, leaving most of it free for those of us who are just there to have a drink or two. It’s these locals, however, that make the Elixir what it is, a bar smack dab in the middle of the Mission that isn’t trying to appeal to everyone outside of the Mission.

So if you’re tired of Mission bars that are as much theme park as they are hipster scenes, check out The Elixir. It truly puts the ‘local’ back in the Mission District's ‘locale’.

Liver… Out!!


Saturday, July 16, 2005

Pardon This

Manure De France

"Everyone makes a big deal about Lance Armstrong winning so many times after losing a testicle. But if your job is to ride a bike, I say the fewer balls the better." - Comedian Greg Giraldo.

Hopefully, along with Michael Smith, the Whitlock era of PTI is now over as well. I don't 'hate' either one of them, but they're piss poor substitutes for the real deal. Kind of like when Tanya Roberts tried to replace Cheryl Ladd on Charlie's Angels.

On yesterday's show, Whitlock tried to take the rather silly, Jim Rome-esque position that cycling is not a sport, the reasoning being that "I learned how to ride a bike when I was 6, so how can it be a sport?". What kind of nonsense logic is that? Wouldn't that eliminate pretty much ALL sports? Certainly the entire Olympics as I learned to walk, run and throw shit a lot earlier than 6 years old.

If there are people that are arguing that poker is a sport, then you would think we could pretty much all agree that cycling is. Whitlock's other assinine take was that "Armstrong just has more time to train than everyone else". Really? Has he invented some sort of time travel machine where he can train for 5 years in what us mortals pereceive as 6 months? I gotta think out of the 6.2 Billion people on earth, SOMEONE trains as hard, if not harder than Lance Armstrong, and he didn't win, so explain that.

On second thought, don't bother. Just go back to Kansas City for awhile Whitlock. We'll call you the next time Texas Tim Cowlishaw's not available to fill in.


Friday, July 15, 2005

Portland, Oregon, Day One

Stayed at the uber-hip, mid century modern chic-hole called Jupiter just east of downtown Portland last night. Fights outside of the adjoining music venue Doug Fir and balcony parties everywhere. More trucker hats and ironic t-shirts than even Ashton Kutcher could stand.

If it's poseurs and hipsters ye be seeking, look no further than the corner of 9th and Burnside in the city famous for.. well, ok, famous for nothing other than Quarterflash, Tommy Tutone and accidentally producing Matt Groening and Gus Van Sant.


Wednesday, July 13, 2005

World's Silliest Skank...

Mmmmm... Classy.

I've never understood anyone who enjoys Mariah Carey. Her music is just annoying, trapped-animal-sounding voice excercises with a crappy beat or sappy generic studio stings behind them, and let's just say her 'look' has always been a wee bit trashy.

But here's the Coup De Graah (sic); Apparently, her movie 'Glitter', which was one of the most unintentionally funny movies ever made ever (I don't count Showgirls, as i believe that was all on purpose), only failed because of, yup you guessed it, 9/11.

Glitter was ahead of its time – today it's 'in' to make 80's music. But the timing was bad - I released it around September 11 2001. The talk shows needed something to distract from 9/11. I became a punching bag. I was so successful that they tore me down because my album was at number 2 instead of number 1. The media was laughing at me and attacked me. - Mariah Carey

I would try to impart to Mariah how contemptably offensive a statement like that is, but I'm sure she's been called much worse and each time she hears someone try and tell her how mind-numbingly ignorant she is, her head probably cocks to the side like when you try and explain string theory to a dog.

Special thanks to the starfuckers at Stereogum


Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Scott McClellan Finally Gets The Kick To The Nuts He's So Richly Deserved

Well, contrary to what complete pessimists like me thought, the White House Press Corps actually grew a pair yesterday and called Press Secretary Scott McClellan on the stinky mound of bullshit he's been piling up over the last year and a half. Thank god they wouldn't allow him to get away with personally vouching for Karl Rove's innocence in 2003 but now refusing to talk about an ongoing investigation.

So, game over, right? Wrong. Like Rick James after getting kicked in the chest by Charlie Murphy, the NeoCons continue to be 'habitual line-steppers' and don't seem to learn a goddamn thing. Cocaine's a hell of a drug.

In what has to go down as the saddest, most laughable defense of something indefensible yet (and the list is real long at this point), the right's official position seems to be; a) it wasn't illegal to begin with, b) Valerie Plame wasn't really a covert operative, and c) that Rove was merely trying to point out factual innacuracies that might call into question someone trying to make dispariging comments about our wonderful President.

The problem with all these takes is that they don't even answer the question that's being asked, which is, "Is the President going to fire 'anyone in his administration linked to this' like he said he would, or is it just another lie that he told to shut reporters up? There can be no doubt about it, if Karl Rove is not fired, our President is a liar, pure and simple.

Also, to subscribe to the right's head-shakingly idiotic defenses above, you need to also believe that the ENTIRE CIA, The special prosecutor, all the judges who reviewed the classified documents in the contempt cases, McClellan, Wilson, Plame, and PRESIDENT BUSH HIMSELF were ALL WRONG. It seems like a little more than a stretch to ask people to ignore everyone one of those people that have said that Plame's outing was a crime just because Rove's weasel-ass is in hot water and suddenly right-wing bloggers and Tucker Carlson think there's no crime here. To all the right wing spin-meisters, I ask this. Is your credibility and sense of simple ethics and honesty so valueless that you would give them all up to protect Karl Freaking Rove?

Personally, I think Rove is a bitter little toad who's decided to get back at everyone who pulled down his shorts on the playground and chanted 'fatty-fatty-fat-fat' by ruining the world. I would love to see him go to 'big fat dick-in-the-ass' federal prison. But most progressive people I've seen would be content if the administration just fired him and finally admitted for once that they made one damn mistake. It would truly be a watershed event to watch Bush have to do something besides give a medal to members of his administration that have fucked shit up. It might even give me a little bit of hope (a little).

It's this kind of out of control hubris that will eventually bring this entire administration (and indeed the already proven monumentally wrong Neo-Conservative movement) down like a house of cards. Admitting a mistake every once in awhile shows humanity, confidence in your ability to fix things that are broken, and a willingness to think creatively. Sticking to your guns and continuing to shout that two plus two equals five shows nothing more than the arrogant immaturity of a 3-year old who is unable to comprehend something as simple as 'too much ice cream gives you a bellyache' and then keeps eating it until he vomits.

So, right wing idiots, keep feeding your president ice cream. Just don't come crying to us when you get sprayed in a shower of half-digested Cherry Garcia. We put on our 'Gallagher' tarps a long time ago and have desperately tried over the last five years to convince you to do the same.


Monday, July 11, 2005

I'm No Chris Lebenzon

Have to cut it a little short today (or cut it all together) as I'm busy editing my friend Jeff's '3-minute movie'. It's gonna make Citizen Kane look like a 2 week old paper bag of human feces.

What, you've never heard of Chris Lebenzon? Dude edited Top Gun, Days of Thunder AND Ed Wood!


Sunday, July 10, 2005

This Week's SFist Reprint, Or "Take That, Successful Business!"

Since there’s so many places that went to all the trouble of getting a liquor license, Barrespondent Drew feels like it’s his responsibility to try them all out. And even if he doesn’t get a Nobel Prize for it, getting drunk is an acceptable consolation.

Since we live in such an unfortunate time when most people have to work for a living, the ‘after work’ bar is an unfortunate necessity of life. All those ‘nine to fivers’ have to go somewhere, so we guess it’s for the best that they have overpriced, chain restaurant-style places scattered all over the Financial District to grab a few pops in before heading home.

Sure, there’s a couple of gems and historic landmarks scattered around the Downtown area, but it seems the further you creep up toward The Embarcadero, the prices tend to creep up too, along with the chances that everyone you’re drinking with is just killing time before they catch their train back to Concord (If you’re from Concord and that statement offends you, just substitute Pleasanton or something). We brave one of these suburbanite-friendly time killers after the jump.

Gordon Biersch, conveniently located on the corner of ‘Sales Meeting’ and ‘Secretary’s Lunch’, is a living testament to what happens to a decent brewing company when the Starbuck’s business model is liberally applied. The space is big and loud, the waitresses good looking and personality free, and the food as non-threatening as it is uninteresting.

But, Mr. Staggering Man, none of things should've had anything to do with why you were there, right? It should've been all about the beer. After all, along with Anchor Steam and Pyramid, Gordon Biersch was at the forefront of the microbrew revolution of the early nineties. And while we will admit that their beer is actually pretty good, all this other noise just gets in the way of enjoying it.

According to Dan Gordon and Dean Biersch (not to be confused with Dean and Gene Ween), when they created the place way back in ’87, they wanted to create a ‘monument to beer’, but unfortunately this place is just a monument to tacky capitalism. Another cookie-cutter chain restaurant custom made to eventually spread out to every suburban mini-mall in the country that isn’t already crammed full of Applebee’s, Outbacks and Ruby Tuesday’s.

So unless you’re really worried that a bar with any personality would offend your senses or you’re such a beer snob that only a Marzen will do, let Dan and Dean have the suburbs, and get your libations elsewhere.

Liver… Out!!


Saturday, July 09, 2005

PTE Again

Good Luck with Your Layoffs, Mariners. I Hope Your Firings Go Really Well.

What the hell's up with the Seattle Mariners? They run their franchise like 'Ini-tech' from the movie 'Office Space'.

I imagine that Bret Boone's 'assignment' went something like this;

BOB: Hey, remember that guy Brett Boone?


BOB: You know, big forearms guy, silly frosted tips.


OTHER BOB: Yeah, we can't actually find a record of him being a current employee here.

BOB: I looked into it more deeply and I found that apparently what happened is that he was laid off five years ago and no one ever told him, but through some kind of glitch in the payroll department, he still gets $15 Million a season.

OTHER BOB: So we just went a ahead and fixed the glitch.


MARINERS OWNER: So um, Bret Boone has been let go?

BOB: Well just a second there, professor. We uh, we fixed the *glitch*. So he won't be receiving a paycheck anymore, so it will just work itself out naturally.

OTHER BOB: We always like to avoid confrontation, whenever possible. Problem solved from your end.


Friday, July 08, 2005

A Total Robin Hood Situation

Yeah, I should probably acknowledge the terrorist attacks in London, but if there's anything that ABC taught me yesterday, it's that 'if we don't show an old episode of "Who wants to be a Millionaire" with Meredith Viera shortly after 40 English people have been murdered, then the terrorists have won'. Peter Jennings must be rolling in his grave.

But enough about that as it has nothing to do with missing blonde girls from Alabama and is therefore not of any interest to most Americans.

Let's instead talk about Pirates. Not the 'Arrr!! Matey' pirates, but rather those 'yo ho ho on a torrent-search, plunderin' Grokster', rip the whole Bloc Party album before it comes out' pirates. A lot of people seem to have a big problem with them, callin' 'em thieves and accusing them of robbing poor artists who will have to now shamefully go back to the jobs they were doing before they became recording stars.

I'm totally fine with it. I see music and movie pirating as a natural reaction to an entertainment industry that has been engaged in robbing the general public for years. I feel like it's my duty to help put these greedy fuckers in check, and make people realize that because you have nice bone structure or can write a nice song (or, even more ridiculous, KNOW someone who posesses one of these qualities), it doesn't entitle you to live like a French Aristocrat.

Let's start with music. When CDs were first mass-marketed, burning a CD was an expensive proposition. All that new technology and crystal clear digital sound meant that buying music in this new format would have to be more expensive, about twice as expensive as record albums as it turned out. Since then, the cost of digital media has gone down by about 500%. You can now buy a blank CD for about 10 cents. So naturally, you would assume that record companies would want to maintain the same profit margins (give or take), right? Wrong. CDs cost exactly the same, and they now make an ungodly amount of profit for doing the same thing. That's not fair at all.

Same thing applies to movies. There used to be one way and one way only for a movie to make money, at the box office. Now there's instantaneous overseas saturation, video sales, pay-per-view, airline showings, cable television. For a movie not to turn a profit these days, it has to be a $200 million dollar, 9 hour epic about Hitler's rectum, and even then, you'd probably find an online niche market for it. So now that moviemaking is impossible to lose money doing and digital video gets cheaper by the day, you'd think their prices would plummet too, right? Wrong again. Go out tonight and try seeing a movie for under twenty bucks.

The entire entertainment industry suffers when the only people involved in it just see a way to make an awful lot of money really quickly. But there's no reason for entertainers to be paid millions of dollars and certainly much less reason for agents, managers, publicists, PR people, A&R Reps and record company execs to be paid just as much. Good art will happen regardless of how much money there is to be made in it (in fact, you could easily argue that better art would be made if all the greedy assholes were removed from the equation). So if the music and movie industries suddenly become not very profitable, it won't eliminate entertainment at all, it will just force the people out who had no business being involved in 'art' in the first place.

I realize these are all very shaky arguments and that there are probably people who work very hard that are hurt by piracy, but I feel their anger is misdirected. They should be pissed off at the greedy assholes who have cashed in on the cheapness of new technology to buy themselves a 5th house, not the poor bastard who uses technology to hear an album they wouldn't have been able to afford to buy.

Onward Buccaneers! Onward!!


Thursday, July 07, 2005

Thursday Funky Winkerbean Blogging


Wednesday, July 06, 2005

No One Really Cares About The Truth Unless You're Talking About A Cum-Stained Dress

Watching Tucker Carlson's brain-gelling wank-fest last night (AKA 'The Situation'), I got to experience the right's official position on Karl Rove leaking the name of a covert CIA operative for purely political reasons;

"No one cares and it probably shouldn't be illegal anyway.". Yup, that's it. So go nuts Karl Rove! A dipshit mouthpiece for the right will let people know when it's something they should care about. You know, burning issues we need to hear discussed like a car that drove into a pool or Kobayashi's Hot Dog eating championship (actual 'issues' brought up on yesteray's show).

One of the other idiots on the show (there's too many to count) made this genius point; "Valerie Plame wants her identity kept a secret? Then why did she pose for a magazine cover?". Well, retard, probably because she was already outed at that point and didn't want the whole story to get swept under the rug by the very same Cleveland-Steamer loving toad who ruined her career in the first place.

'Mr. Bowtie dick' then managed to keep a straight face while citing some 'article' (which was probably a Town Hall column) stating that the people who wrote the law against outing CIA agents weren't really sure it should be illegal. This of course is the equivalent of someone being brought up on drug charges using the "George Washington smoked dope" defense. Well played, Dick, but even most Republicans would probably concede that jeopardizing national security to petulantly get back at someone for writing a book is probably not such a great thing.

Hopefully, some terrible activist judge will eventually get this case and, not realizing that people just don't care because we're busy watching Britney Spears try and raise her baby, will ignore the overwhelming evidence that outing covert CIA operatives is actually a good thing and put Karl Rove in a prison where he can pay people to pee on him with cigarettes instead of political favors.

As for Tucker, keep up the good work. Your awful attempt to distract a nation that's slowly waking up to the fact that they've been lied to for the last 5 years isn't working. If MSNBC is even paying attention at all, The Situation will be cancelled soon enough. Maybe then you can beg your way onto Fox in time to watch their ratings plummet like they have everywhere else you've worked.


Tuesday, July 05, 2005

MTV Get Off The Air

This guy and his mopey band are apparently no match to heavyhitters like Keane and Green Day...

As original as I've always thought my opinions were, turns out someone else also thought MTV's coverage of 'Live 8' was piss poor and unbelievably bad.

I'm glad that MTV realized that what we really wanted to see was MC Lyte and the rest of the teenage idiot VJs prattle on and talk over the acts. I would guess that the average 'meaningless bullshit, wow, isn't this great?, this is sure gonna do some good although I'm not sure how' to actual music ratio was something like 90 to 1.

Thankfully I Tivo'd and sped through most of the coverage, otherwise I would have had to sit through hours upon hours of MTV retards showing us a 30 second clip of a band playing followed by some gushing teenager who sounds like they literally don't understand one word that they're saying talking about what a valuable event this is (despite raising no actual money or anything).

Amongst the bands/acts that were completely missed; Duran Duran, Bjork (although a brief clip was shown at the end during the 'wacky foriegn bands' segment), Scissor Sisters, Travis, UB40, The Cure, A-Ha, Audioslave, Roxy Music, Kaiser Chiefs, Pet Shop Boys etc. (I would've also said Dave Matthews, but that was probably the only good call you made all day).

So thanks again MTV, you managed to take a perfectly interesting event and make it duller than a Joan and Melissa Rivers red carpet special.


Monday, July 04, 2005

America, 'F' Yeah

Did my patriotic duty this weekend by watching a pirated video version of 'Team America, World Police' (fuck yeah indeed).

I don't know if it's just because I expect good things from Trey Parker and Matt Stone or what, but I thought it was just OK. Sure, it had a couple of funny bits (the montage about montages was good.) and the puppet sex scene does not 'disappoint'.

Overall, however, it was just a fairly well executed set of pretty predictable jokes aimed at action movies, patriotic rednecks and 'the Film Actor's Guild' or F.A.G. (insert Beavis and Butthead laugh here). I'm still not sure if in 3 years, I'll even be able to remember if I saw this movie or not.

But back to the Film Actor's Guild part of the movie. This is the section I was 'warned' about because as I was told by some douchebag conservative young republican, "liberals probably won't like this movie because it makes fun of actors and Michael Moore.". Having now seen it, I can confirm that that particular douchebag was also a complete idiot. Why is it that republicans have such a hard time wrapping their tiny little minds around the concept of satire? Make fun of Jesus Christ or Bill O'Reilly and they get angry and protest, but make fun of Sean Penn and Michael Moore and not only is it hilarious, but they believe that those stupid humorless liberals will probably be offended by it. When has the reverse not been true? No matter how many 'South Park Republicans' there are, the GOP will continue to be the party that doesn't get a joke unless it involves someone falling down or someone crushing a watermelon with a mallet.

The only people who honestly believe that liberals will be offended by Team America must first make the unbelievable leap to believe that liberals think that celebrities and political activists are as sacred to them as Jesus is to the right. How dare they say Michael Moore would actually strap dynamite to himself to blow up Americans! How dare they say Alec Baldwin and Tim Robbins would fire machine guns on American citizens to ensure Kim Jong Il's safety! Why, next they'll imply that Hillary Clinton uses witchcraft to turn children into lesbians and Howard Dean burns down churches. I can't possibly react rationally to these jokes because I worship these people as infallible gods. It says a lot more about the right's jingoistic, unquestioning belief of everything Rush Limbaugh shoves down their throat than it does about their sense of humor.

I'd love to give Parker and Stone a lot of credit for making a movie that reaches across the aisle to offend everyone, but it doesn't. Unfortunately Team America only succeeds in emboldening pea-brained shit-heads who don't see anything wrong with the other 80% of the movie when the Team is jingoistically destroying the rest of the world while singing 'America, fuck yeah!'.

I wouldn't strap dynamite to yourself and walk into Blockbuster to see Team America, but if a bootleg copy falls into your lap, check it out.


Sunday, July 03, 2005

SFist Back Again

Time once again for another two fingers of truth, lit on fire and chugged before being hastily chased by a PBR back. As long as Prohibition has still been repealed, Barrespondent Drew will be there to try new places out.

Well, bad luck, poor decision making and/or godawful planning have landed us in the Upper Haight again, stuck between 3 head shops, 2 Starbucks and a store that appears to have used T-shirts on sale for $30. What’s that you say, the Haight ain’t that bad? Maybe you’re right. After all, it does keep many hundreds of tourists away from other more appealing parts of the city.

Actually, as much as we'd like to write the whole neighborhood off and treat it like Fisherman's Wharf for Phish fans, the Haight has some of the best bars in the whole city. Afore-reviewed Café Aub Zam Zam’s and Finnegan’s Wake are fantastic places to get all lit up in the middle of the day ,and The Gold Cane has its moments as well. Maybe we should seriously reconsider our knee-jerk anti-Haightness from a mere paragraph ago. Ok, fine, we love the Haight and we’re not afraid to say it. So now that we've buried the hatchet with our hemp-loving neighbors, let’s try another place out.

Murio’s Trophy Room, right next to Amoeba records at the ass-end of Haight, is a pretty damn fun place. Maybe a little too bright, and certainly more annoying as the night wears on and people spill out of the several sports bars and music clubs nearby, but still fun.

We’ve had incredible luck with the bartenders at Murio’s. Without a doubt some of the friendliest in the city. Combine that with quick and no-nonsense drink pouring and you’ve got a great spot for the early evening before it gets too jam packed. Again, if I were running the place, I’d take out about half of the lighting as it seems to constantly have a ‘2 AM, everybody out’ kind of feel where you’re squinting against a harsh floodlight just to see if you’re name’s come up on the pool table yet. It also could benefit from some darker carpet or a fresh coat of paint that isn’t a primary color. Bright and happy might be good for an IKEA, but it’s crap for bars.

All in all however, we’d still recommend giving Murio’s a try. After all, how impressive is it that the staff here are able to stay this friendly and cordial when most of the people walking by are stoned tourists? Perhaps we just answered our own question.

Liver... Out!!


Saturday, July 02, 2005

Pardon? The Eruption!!

Stinking Hypocrites!

I know the season's been over for days now, so why would anyone want to hear anything about basketball, right? C'mon, you know there's nothing else to talk about. Baseball? It's not even July yet. There's no Olympics, no World Cup, no Euro Championships. About the only thing left to look forward to is football, which should be holding the Hall of Fame game any time now.

But anyway, back to basketball. I'm here today to defend one Timothy Duncan and call all the nay-sayers who rip him up a bunch of stupid hypocrites. We've all heard the chant, "Duncan's soft. He's boring, he doesn't play with enough passion.".

Most of this is bullshit. If you watched the finals, Duncan many times got his own rebound and putback, against Ben Wallace! He scrapped, he fought, he generally kicked ass against the best defensive team in the league whose main goal was to stop Tim Duncan. So let's just lay all that stuff to rest.

The only thing Duncan IS guilty of is being boring. He's an awful interview. Mainly because there's no anticipation that he's going to say something incredibly stupid like when you interview Allen Iverson or Rasheed Wallace. You also won't get the dreadful 'comedy stylings' that you get when you interview Shaq O'Neal. Nope, he just answers your questions. No 'N'-word, no shout outs to his baby's mamas, just simple boring answers to the boring questions you're asking.

Sportswriters are like sharks, if they stop circling around the bloodbath swallowing everything in sight, they die. Given the choice, it's much easier to write a trash piece about Ron Artest punching some dude than it is to write how polite Mr. Duncan answered all your questions to your satisfaction. That doesn't mean he's a rotten player, however, or that his reputation is tarnished, it just means that someone finally listened to sportswriters who spent their entire career talking about what assholes athletes are.


Friday, July 01, 2005

Not Quite The Kennedy Assassination, But....

Pull The Strings!! Pull The Strings!!

VH1 Classic (usually channel 3450 or so if you have digital cable) has a show that me and my wife have become addicted to called 'We Are The 80s'. Now without revealing too much about the sad way we spend our evenings and weekends, let's just say that we Tivo the hell out of this show and enjoy speeding through episodes trying to out-do each other in who knows more about '80s music and just leave it at that.

(Before I go any further, I should probably clarify that this show for the most part doesn't play the 'Rhino Records', fraternity-party douchebag '80s music, but instead opts for a lot of really obscure stuff. A lot of people claim to be experts in '80s music because they can identify Blondie or Wham pretty quickly, which impresses most people not at all. Name that video by 'Sigue Sigue Sputnik' or tell me two songs each by The Communards and Bronski Beat and I'll give you some props. Anyway, the point is that me and the wife aren't just proud of our New Wave music knowledge, we're downright smug about it.)

But to try and get back to the point, this show has certain 'quirks' that we've come to notice. At least once an episode, for quite a while, you could count on at least one song by either 'The J. Geils Band' or Peter Wolf. This was amusing at first, but after several weeks, it became quite clear; Things have gotten so bad for Peter Wolf that the only way he can keep his career alive is by getting a job programming some show no one watches on a cable station no one gets and plugging his own videos into it!! Say it ain't so!!

Giving further credence to this theory was what happened a few weeks ago. If our theory is correct, you would have to assume that Peter Wolf would go on vacation at some point. Well, right on cue, a couple of weeks ago we noticed that the J. Geils videos stopped, and in their place were videos from 'Flesh For Lulu'. And then, after a week or so, they suddenly resumed regular showings of 'Lights Out' and 'Love Stinks'. Coincidence? I think not.

So just to summarize, it is my contention that Peter Wolf (or perhaps a sychophantic Magic Dick) is in charge at VH1 Classic, and that Rocco Barker or "Del Boy" Greening from Flesh For Lulu is his underling in charge of loading tapes and stuff. Perhaps the next time Pete goes on vacation, they can hand the reigns over to Paul (N-n-n-nineteen) Hardcastle or Murray (One Night in Bangkok) Head.

Did I just blow your mind? How come the MSMedia isn't covering this? Where are this generation's Oliver Stones when you need them?