Monday, August 28, 2006

Shake and Bake

I had the pleasure of seeing Talladega Nights this weekend, and it was funnier than I thought it was going to be. It had all the silly gags and goofy stuff I knew it would, but some of the dialogue was smarter than I expected. I guess we can thank Judd Apatow's influence for that. John C. Reilly (who according to IMDB was also in Days of Thunder) should definitely get more comic roles. He's just gold. I was pretty disappointed, though in Sacha Baron Cohen's performance as Jean Girard. I was hoping for so much more from his gay French Formula 1 driver. I also thought Amy Adams was way underused. Jane Lynch was great as Ricky's mom, and Gary Cole was good as his dad, but Sam Rockwell would have rocked the shit out of that role.

We also saw John Tucker Must Die, and man, did it blow! Not only was it the stupidest movie I've seen in a long time, but Jenny McCarthy was fully clothed and acted all mature and stuff. Not using her for T&A and/or comedy is just a waste. Maybe I'm just getting old, but when a movie implies that merely knowing who Cheap Trick and Elvis Costello are makes someone cool in a deep way, I want to lob grenades at the screen. The best thing about the movie was the Motion City Soundtrack song at the closing credits. But it was a night out, so that was good.

Watched a bit of the Emmy's too, and while I was happy to see 24 get the love, Gregory Itzin was seriously robbed. I don't care how good Alan Alda was in The West Wing, the newly devious President Logan deserved the trophy.

I guess that's all for now.

Friday, August 25, 2006

I have a confession to make

It's time for me to confess and lay bare the vices that occupy my time during the day. The truth is I spend a lot of my day picking hairs out of my ears and nose. My wife plucks hairs out of my ears every now and then (she used to do it for her boss at an old job!) and her obsession with overly-long hairs has spread to me. Now I can't help but let my fingers drift up to my ears to feel for little hairs poking out. I let my fingernails grow longer so that I can pick them out more effectively, but when they get too long they become less useful (because they are less rigid and bend more easily, in case you were wondering). I often get thick hairs on the same corresponding spots in both ears. They feel like beard stubble when they first pop out, and I scrape my ear raw trying to get the little bastards. Sometimes I win, and sometimes I'm forced to give up and wait until I get home to remove the offending spike with tweezers.

The worst/best are the longer hairs deeper down in my ears. I can feel them with my finger tip when I brush away a little dried wax, but damn it to Hell, I come up just short when I reach in to pull the motherfucker out. So I end up spreading my ear cartilage, trying to wedge my thumb and ring finger in there. (The ring finger is thinner then the middle finger, but longer and stronger than the pinky. If that's not even better evidence of God's creative design than Kirk Cameron's banana, I don't know what is!) As you might guess, this relentless pursuit of a light-averse hair in the bowels of my outer ear can get quite uncomfortable. But I can't stop. And here's why: The rapture at finally getting a hold of the hair, starting the tug to make sure the grip is tight, feeling the tiny pin-prick of the follicle resisting the extraction, and then completing the sweet release out of the skin is quite the triumphant rush! Very little is as satisfying in my everyday life as battling a reluctant, hard-to-get ear hair and winning. Often, especially if it's a big one, I keep the hair on my fingertip and marvel at the formidableness of my fallen foe. It takes me longer than you would expect for me to finally say goodbye to the hair and brush it onto the floor. I am fascinated with my quarry.

As for nose hairs, they aren't nearly as enjoyable to pluck, and that's because they can really hurt. Often my eyes will tear up when I pull out a particularly recalcitrant one. The lighter, thinner hairs near the middle front of the nose are the worst for pain. The longer, darker ones on the inside, while impressive, don't captivate me. Nose hairs are just gross, and don't offer as much of a strategic challenge. Removing them is somewhat of a cosmetic necessity. Pulling ear hairs, on the other hand, is a sport done for the thrill of the hunt.

So what weird or gross personal grooming things do you do at work?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Oy vey, what a headache!

Some anonymous commenter brought up the possibility of your names being searchable in the comments. So I checked it out and it appears that if you search within the Haloscan domain you can find comments left by people whose comment names you know. So what do we do now, S? Are we supposed to take on all new identities just so you can avoid some awkwardness with your coworker? No, because I've done some testing, and even if the comment pages get found, those pages don't refer to the blog (as long as I keep my url out of my Haloscan cookie). Even though I've put the column picture on the comment page, neither the blog title nor the url appear anywhere on the page. And before you ask, "But what about the ever so tell-tale Haloscan url?" I've already thought of that, and set my Haloscan username as different than my current or former blog alias. It would take some serious, devoted, and time-consuming work to find the blog that way, and I doubt that she's willing to make that kind of investment. Besides, she's supposed to not suspect that I have a new site at all, so I feel pretty good.

Okay, anything else I may not have thought of? Let me know in the comments, with your normal names.

Finally getting settled in

There's actually several things I want to write about, but I thought finalizing the look and details of the place were more important. I'm quite pleased with the design. The banner is an actual reed that I photographed while camping last weekend (that's one of the stories I need to tell soon). I rested it on two camp chairs and put my car keys on it to make it bend. Then I Photshopped that bad boy out, found a cool Ionic capital column pic, et voila, my new kick-ass banner. I'm so damn proud of myself. Mad skillz, y'all.

Thanks for the inaugural comments you left, but now they're gone, in favor of Haloscan commenting. It hasn't updated the text on my comment links yet, but that should come soon.

Before I dive in and start writing, there are going to have to be some changes here to guard against being found by my coworker:

1. No mention of where I live or where I am traveling. I'm adopting Bliss' "hometown" method of vague-osity.

2. No mention of that "Last Weekday Offspring Posting" feature from the old place. I'll keep doing those posts over there, as well as some random posts now and then to throw her off. I'll probably also post pics of our upcoming Europe trip there, if I actually get around to it (remember my Hawai'i trip pics I never posted?).

3. New nicknames for my spouse and sons, and probably just a lot less mention of them altogether. I often tell stories in my office of what's going on with my family, and I don't want that to be searchable. That said, the little one's first birthday is this Saturday!!! Hooray!!!

4. No more iPod tracking. Yes, I'm that paranoid.

5. I'm going to be vague about the sports teams and bands I follow. That's probably overly cautious, but I'm sure you're all sick of hearing about them anyway.

6. I'm still deciding about linking to my daily trivia quiz here. I'm keeping it on the old blog, and will probably link it here, too, but with a different name. I don't think she's savvy enough to search for sites that link to my trivia page, especially since I don't think she's ever clicked that link on the old blog.

7. As I've requested, no one who is linked on my old site should link to me here. I think I'm going to rip off an idea from one of you and link to blogs using pictures, so she can't search for those names and find my links.

8. I may take this rebirthing opportunity to be a bit more, shall we say, raunchy in my writing and linking. I know that doesn't really do it for some of you, but maybe less filters will make my writing more enjoyable overall. Especially if you enjoy swearing and big boobies.

9. Last and most important, no work talk whatsoever. No complaining about coworkers, or assignments, no talk of how bored or lazy I am. Feel free to keep me in line if you catch me slipping.

So that's it. Welcome to the New Jan Brady, ummm, I mean The Slender Reed.

Patsy's Dead

It was probably an ill-advised choice for a blog name. I think S. Reed is pretty good. Especially if read like Sean Connery reads "'S' Words".

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

First Official Post!

Welcome to The Slender Reed! Please stay tuned for a template and banner update, as well as the frustratingly inane content you've come to expect.