December 2002
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wJanuary 2002

1/31/02 - Back from New Yahhk City, as the Bostonians call it. I don't speak with the accent, but many around here do. Anyway, I didn't get to go to Ground Zero, unfortunately, as work had me running around all over the place. The free time I had was spent sleeping. Alas, I have to go back there within the next two weeks or so - maybe I'll go then.

This is one of those classic-style jokes, but I read it on the plane last night and thought it was kinda funny. Duh.

Hey now, this is really cool! Find out which cities best suit you!

Soap box time: what's up with all those management bios on corporate websites? My favorite ones are the ones where the site is touting their VP of Whatever as the best thing since sliced bread. "Mr. Bootycall grew company revenue by 65% for three straight years here at idiot.com." Well, of course he did - the internet took off about three years ago and the company was started in 1998!

I need more pictures on this site. I'll put some up soon. Oh yeah, go Patriots.

1/26/02 - One thing that always traps me in their long tentacles are documentaries. I am such a sucker for them. Doesn't even matter who they're about, really. For instance, I can whittle away an full hour easily watching a documentary about a band like Poison, or any episode of "Behind The Music," for that matter. Now, I detest Poison, and from a music standpoint, they really made no impact on the history of music, but it's still terribly compelling nonetheless. Two recent documentaries, however, have had somewhat of an impact on me (and the world):

1. One Day In September tells the harrowing story of the Summer Olympic Games of 1972 held in Munich, Germany. 27 years after WWII, Germany opened it's doors to the world in its first real audition on the world stage since those horrible atrocities occured. But on September 5, Palestinian terrorists brought a totally unprepared Germany crashing down to its knees again by taking 11 Israeli athletes hostage. A fascinating, frustrating, sad and captivating 90 minutes that should not be missed by anyone.

2. Being the person who actually sat down and wrote the Declaration of Independance is one thing, but being a slaveowner while doing it is another thing entirely, and that's just what Thomas Jefferson did. Directed by Ken Burns, this documentary explores the life of our third president from his days as a young boy to his last years of life, 17 years of those exchanging letters with onetime foe John Quincy Adams in Boston. This is not a fluff piece on Jefferson in any sense of the word - all of his amazing accomplishments, tragedies and shortcomings are wonderfully presented and well worth your time.

On a much lighter note, I just ate half a bag of these addicting little critters. Damn they're good. Today's flavor: Parmesan.

1/24/02 - There are so many times when you just want to get away from it all. I feel that way now. I wonder how long I would last if I was placed on an island somewhere where there was no computers, no telephones, no radios or no televisions. It seems like a perfect place to be right now, but I wonder how long I would last without communication.

Click here for some fun with Jeff!

So, I am going to New York on business next week and I am wondering internally (externally, now) if I should go to the WTC site. I feel obligated somehow to pay my respects to both the people who died there and the people who have tirelessly worked to clean it all up since September 12. I feel like I should, but there's another part of me that would feel like an ambulance chaser.

They say that people born under the Taurus sign appreciate the good things in life. While this trait is actually true for me, I don't think it has anything to do with astrology. I think people's actions and reactions come straight from how they grew up and nothing else. The most important aspect of your personality and your actions is how much work your parents put into weaning you. Oh sure, like anything else, there's exceptions, but I truly believe this to be true 9 out of 10 times. You don't really realize these things until you're, oh, 28 years old, maybe. Anyway, I am getting off-track here. I want one of these. And I want one of these. Or how about this? Oh yeah, I'll take two of these, one in red and one in blue, please. Will you buy them for me? Thank you. I love you.

1/22/02 - I don't pray much, really. Okay, I don't pray at all. But allow me this once to emphatically pray that I never, ever, EVER get, uh "stuck" in this situation.

Random thought of the day: if there were no such thing as clothes, would Hugh Hefner be so rich? Think about it.

If you're a fan of the movie "Memento," you might enjoy the DVD I watched last night called Following. Double-crossing and triple-crossing galore!

I'm actually starting to really look forward to the Olympics for some reason. I used to be fairly bored by the Olympics, but I think as I grow older I am able to better grasp how amazing (and young) some of these athletes are. Of course, the Winter Olympics are so much better than the summer one. Watching people flying down what is basically a frozen waterslide on their luge and bobsleds. What's the plural of luge, anyway? Luge? Luges? Anyway, I've always been a fan of Olympic figure skating, too - people have NO idea the skill it takes to be a professional ice skater. No idea at all. Perhaps the most underrated sport in terms of respect. I am just rambling now, aren't I? Oh, how could I forget Olympic ice hockey? By golly, I can't wait. Sheesh - and ski jumping!? I know one thing, if I had to go down that thing, I would be wetting my pants (and probably worse) when I was airborne. I wish there was an Olympic sport for sitting - I'd win the silver, probably. I am one terrific sitter. I wouldn't win gold because I'd have to get up after a while and wash the dishes.

1/20/02 - My friends and I occasionally joke around about having game shows in odd places. I happen to remember one particular conversation which really had us laughing about ordering a pizza and when the guy delivers it, we have an entire game show set up in the living room and we make him come in and try to win the big dollars. Seriously, these are things we dream up. Well, much to my amazement, I came across this gem, and I wonder if maybe my friends and I are in the wrong businesses.

So, the Golden Globes are tonight. Today I got to thinking about awards shows and I've come to the conclusion that I really don't care about any of them much with the exception of the Academy Awards. Why are there so many awards shows now? The VH-1 Fashion Awards? The American Music Awards? The Billboard Entertainment Awards? And whatever happened to the MTV Video Music Awards? This show used to actually have some potential to be a heavy hitter - but I haven't cared about it now for 6 or 7 years. Is it because I'm a ripe old 30? I'm not sure, because I still love pop culture. This begs my question: how can you possibly give out awards for music videos when MTV only plays a grand total of 6 videos in rotation? I don't know.

The Raiders got robbed last night, but I'm so down with it. I love watching games like last night when it was just snowing like mad. Go Patriots (I only watch the playoff games).

1/18/02 - Perhaps this is a sign of my aging, but my appreciation for all things Van Morrison just continues to skyrocket, whereas during my college and post-grad days I didn't give him much of a chance. Why, you ask? I dunno. Maybe I just got too sick of watching all the frat boys and sorority girls flip out whenever the played-to-death "Brown Eyed Girl" came on the bar stereo. Yeah, I bet that was it. I associated Van Morrison with that miserable memory and never gave the 'ol guy a chance again. But, oh, have I seen the error of my ways. Astral Weeks is clearly a masterpiece, there is no debate. Then I heard a song on LaunchCast (see my comments below about that) off of another Van Morrison album called Veedon Fleece and I'll be damned if this thing isn't one of the more riveting albums I've ever heard! I guess it's all about mood, though. This is good winter music.

Speaking of my skyrocketing appreciation of things, is this not becoming the best show on television or what? Seriously sharp writing and phenomenal characters, not to mention they use a great Clem Snide song as their theme at the beginning.

1/17/02 - For those of you who have seen those airline safety cards tucked snugly into the seat of your airplane, this site provides some hilarious alternatives. Just imagine you open that safety card and see these. Truly funny (click on each individual image and read them - amazing).

Greetings. I don't really have the time to download MP3's and although I'm sure I would be a huge fan of organizing them and having some on my hard drive, I just don't. But about a year ago, I discovered the beauty of LaunchCast, which is a java-based music player. Launch was just bought and integrated by Yahoo about a month ago, FYI. Anyway, here, in a nutshell, is how it works. You sign up, then you enter all of your favorite bands. The more bands you enter, the better it gets to know you. Then it plays all of your favorite bands music, and even music similar to it. Best part: you have the choice while it's playing of never playing a song, an entire album, or even an artist ever again. You see, I love The Kinks, but I hate their album "UK Jive." So when a song from "UK Jive" comes on, I just click "album" and "X" on the player and it will never play anything from that album again. I love it. Doesn't take up craploads of space on your harddrive and if you screw around with it long enough, it just continuously plays everything you love. You can rate each album, song and artist on a scale of 0-100, also, and it will play your favorites more. And check this out - you can browse other people's personally made channels and select their tastes and it will merge their personal favorites with yours to create your own super-station. I've said enough here, I suppose. Give 'er a shot.

Finally, I suppose we all have (or will) run into mouse/rodent problems at some point in our lives. Here's a guy with those same problems, only documented in a seriously demented way. File this one under "too much time on my bizarre hands."

1/15/02 - I would be remiss not to offer you a Mark Cuban update. I wouldn't offer it if I didn't think it wasn't funny.

Oh yeah, major pop star from Senegal postponed. Rescheduled for this Saturday.

The last time I was at Panera Bread for lunch, they gave me my receipt and I noticed that it had a coupon on it for $1 off. So I go back in there today, fully expecting to ingest a delicious sandwich at 1/5th of the price I usually pay. But nooooooo, you have to call some 1-800-panera number or something and get a "coupon code" and write down the code on the receipt, blah blah blah. Give me a break! For a dollar? Great lunch place, though. Excellent sandwiches on homemade bread. For the record: smoked ham with swiss on honey grain w/ lettuce, tomato and mustard on the side. I knew you were wondering.

Yeah, I work for Ask Jeeves, but let's give credit where credit is due: the Google Image Search kicks major ass. And since I work for Ask Jeeves, I'll have to give a major shout-out to to our new search engine, Teoma. I really think it will eventually be as good or better than Google. Eventually.

Cracker plays The Paradise in Boston on March 9th. I'll be the guy wearing the coat.

Thank you, Cederholm.tv, for the bitmap fonts.

1/11/02 - Tonight I am going to a concert to see a huge star perform. I guarantee that most of you have never heard of him, though, because he's from Senegal. That's right, I am seeing Senegal's biggest pop star tonight. Consider it an attempt to bring a little worldly culture into my life. I love how I put "most of you have never heard of him" - as if more than one person is reading this. Hardy har har. Arf arf arf.

One of my favorite, uh, mainstream bands has a new album coming out soon, and I am pretty psyched, especially since I will be one of the first 20,000 to buy it, which means I'll get the bonus live disc recorded in Chicago. A music nerd like me appreciates such swaggy-ness.

I really do not like basketball at all, but I couldn't help but be tickled by the ongoing battle of wits between Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, and the NBA referees. Cuban is so rich from selling his broadcast.com site, he could care less that he keeps repeatedly getting fined by the NBA for being too outspoken. But the the latest incident really made me laugh. I love the Dairy Queen, by the way. Blizzards rock da house.

1/9/02 - I'm green with envy and incredibly entranced that Dave Eggers can write a book like A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius. The style, the prose and the tone all seem to be exactly how I think sometimes. I mean, right when I opened the book I knew it was going to be one of the best I've read in many years. And I'm only on page 68! If you haven't read this book, please do so. I can't really think up enough superlatives to describe it.

I'm somewhat tempted to move to Texas and buy season tickets to the Rangers now that Juan Gonzalez has signed back up with them. What a group of hooligans they have down there: Carl Everett, John Rocker, Juan Gonzalez, Chan Ho Park (I will NEVER forget when he performed a leaping leg kick on some other defenseless ballplayer), etc. By golly. Of course, the Rangers will still lose.

If you don't take any other advice from me, ever, take this one seriously: invest in fuel-cell companies NOW. A friend of mine told me about fuel-cells 18 months ago, and since then I've kept a close eye on a few companies that have to do with this very encouraging form of energy. Seems like a no-brainer to me.

1/7/02 - I think someday I'm really going to regret that I never really watched The Simpsons. I can probably count on one hand the amount of full episodes I've watched of that show. The odd part of that is I consider myself to be fairly up-to-date and knowledgeable about all things pop-culture. In fact, I can actually recite - verbatim - ALL the jive talkin' in the movie "Airplane!" Seems like someday down the road I'll have to rent them all and just have a marathon and laugh my arse off. The reason I mention this is because I saw a syndicated episode tonight that featured The Who (a favorite band of mine, too) and it was hilarious.

Which brings me to another set of TV shows that I actually was addicted to back in my college days. During the first month of college, even if it was nickel draft night in a local watering hole at Kent State University, I would stay in and be perplexed and throughly entertained by Twin Peaks. It was truly one of the most original and interesting series of all time, and they've been released on DVD, so I'll give it another go 'round after ten years. I remember sitting in the Terrace Hall "living room" at Kent every time it came on, hoping the girl I had a crush on would come down and watch it, too, because I knew she liked it. I think her name was Jana. I only had a crush on her for like a week. Of course I never told her.

1/6/02 - Ahhh....another quiet, lazy weekend in the doldrums of winter. Saw two movies this weekend, The Royal Tenenbaums wasn't nearly as good as Rushmore or Bottle Rocket, but was still highly enjoyable. Had the movie been made without Owen Wilson (who also co-wrote it), I venture to say it would have been incredibly disappointing.

The surprise of the weekend, though, was the postively phenomenal A Beautiful Mind. I was lucky because I walked into the theatre knowing next to nothing about this film, and was completely riveted by the story, the performance of Russell Crowe, and the twists that it contained. My girlfriend, on the other hand, felt robbed because she knew.....what I won't tell you. Just see it. Seriously. Don't read any reviews, don't find out anything about it if possible. Just go.

The Boston Globe's "Spotlight Team" had a interesting, and borderline sickening article today. It is truly beyond me how people in the highest levels of religion (or any profession, for that matter) can turn a blind eye to this, knowing how much these horrible things can affect lives of not just the victims, but their families and friends.

And on a brighter note: "Hey you thieves, you had better stop or face certain doom with my powerful and sophisticated weapony!!!!"

1/4/02 - "It's okay, darling, just hold still and I'll make it all better....."

A round of applause and a moment of silence, please, for this man, although I'm not really sure I want to make it this long, it's still pretty darn admirable.

My "moron of the month" award goes to Nate Newton. This guy is a former professional football player - and a good one from what I hear - who made a whole crapload of money during his long career. So, how do you cap off your long and overly prosperous career? A nice, long vacation? No. Buy yourself a swank car? No. Send your kids to college? No. Click here and have yourself a good laugh, and be satisfied that sure, we're not rich, but at least we're smart.

1/2/02 - Happy New Year! We can only hope that this year will be better than last. Don't we always wish that, though? This year, in particular, though, I really hope so. Here in Massachusetts, our year got off to a very interesting and other-worldly start. Let's hope it's a sign of good things to come.

Heading over to our local cookie-cutter arena tomorrow night to watch the Bruins play the Toronto Maple Leafs. I'm still a little miffed that The FleetCenter is such a boring building. We went from the Boston Garden, which had the MOST character, to an arena that you really have no hope of distinguishing from ones in any other town. Yawn. But hark! There's actually one NHL arena I've been to that does have character, and believe it or not, it's in Nashville, TN. Of all places! Although they certainly could have come up with a better name than the Gaylord Entertainment Center, the place is really cool (check out the huge radio tower outside!) and the fans, when I was there, were absoloutly electric and super-loud. I love that.

Of course it's very difficult to not watch the news these days. But my girlfriend and I keep howling with irritation at this Ashleigh Banfield character on MSNBC. Oh sure, I have no doubt she worked hard to get where she is, and she's done nothing on television that I've seen to make me irritated, but why is it that whenever she's on television we just can't take her seriously? I don't know......

Oh, December's stuff is now in my new Archives section (also located in the orange table just to your left, there). I'm starting to get the hang of this. Maybe I'll try doing something a little more challenging with the site soon. Maybe.

posted by Jeff Copetas