Canseco Knows Best or “How Steroids Will Destroy Your Mind”

If you haven’t been following world’s best twitter user/resident crazy person Jose Canseco’s twitter feed, WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING WITH YOUR LIFE?!?!?!

Half of the Ambiguously Steroided Duo aka “The Bash Brothers”

and no, not these Bash Brothers.

If you don’t know who they are, you had no childhood and I feel sorry for you

has taken to twitter recently to remind the world that he 1- is still alive and kickin’ and 2 – bringin’ the cray to the interwebs as fast as Amanda Bynes (seriously, that girl’s tweets should come with a prescription for penicillin – you’ll feel diseased/shame after reading them). Thankfully, Jose’s tweets fall more towards the “are you for real? is this real life?” spectrum of crazy than the “this is a violation of my eyes and mind” spectrum of which Ms. Bynes falls under (seriously, Amanda, I REALLY didn’t need to know you want Drake to “murder your vagina”. WAY WAY WAY TMI. It’s like those car accidents you keep getting in removed you of any sense of shame/functionality in normal society).

But back to the OTHER crazy town, population: Jose.

Mr. Canseco has been delighting the twitterverse with his ramblings since he opened an account. From his earlier oeuvre, Jose tweeting about:

  • aliens getting a hold of his twitter account 
  • dying and becoming a vampire (and apparently, we’re all his apprentices)
  • while being dead, hanging out with “Elvis” and “Michael” (I’m assuming Presley and Jackson…but with Jose you never know. It could have been Elvis Billingham and Michael Otterstein)
  • needing an attorney because his landlord evicted him (but kept his “chandaleers”)
  • requesting to be a consultant on Eastbound & Down (because we all know Kenny Powers is basically Jose)
  • offering a sweet package where people could pay to hang out with him for the day (I guess his attorneys’ fees are pretty high. Also, I wonder if the package would include Performance Enhancing Drugs or if it would be more of a “BYOD”)

That was like a YEAR ago. And Jose has been keepin’ on with his tweets, each one slightly crazier than before.

Recently, Jose tackled science, specifically the difference between ‘gravity’ and ‘ancient gravity‘. Apparently, there IS a difference. Ancient gravity was WAY weaker. Otherwise, how could dinosaurs be so nimble? Or giant birds flying? Who knew the guy who opened baseball’s pandora’s box was also is an amateur scientist!?!?

Besides winning the internet with science, Jose wants to ‘duet’ a painting with former President George W Bush. You may not remember, but Jose is also something of an artist. He painted this eerily accurate painting of MLB Commish, Bud Selig.

I especially like the red eyes & giant horns

I especially like the red eyes & giant horns

Without twitter, we never would have known what an artiste Jose is!

And then there was “Vaticanseco”

When Pope Benedict stepped down a few months ago, the world speculated who would be Pope. And, Religious Scholar that is he, Jose put in his two cents. Sanity may have lost, but the world won with Canseco selecting himself to be the new Pontiff. And, if that didn’t work out? He and Man-Ram would be willing to come play for the Cleveland Indians this season (no joke). So, Pope or probable bench player for the tribe. Either one is fine with him. He REALLY wants a spot on the Indians, using the hashtag #rolltribe on more than one occasion.

Jose Indians

As a diehard Cleveland Indians fan, I say BRING IT ON. With the Indians at the forefront of social media (Social Suite, anyone?), it seems like a no-brainer to have a twitter superstar on the roster. He doesn’t even have to play. They can just give him the title of “Chief Tweeter” and let him go to town, tweeting about whatever his little steroided heart desired (and it would have been glorious). And you KNOW he would have been ALL over the Indians’ Harlam Shake video.

There really is no way to put the epicness of Jose’s tweets into words. I couldn’t do it justice. So I’ll just let the man speak for himself.

Jose Pope Twitter

Vatican scholar. And worried about a Pope B16 Conspriacy

First Bud Selig, now THE DONALD. I would pay $$$ to watch this being painted.

First Bud Selig, now THE DONALD. I would pay $$$ to watch this being painted.

Actually, I would pay $$$$$$ to see this.

Actually, I would pay $$$$$$ to see this.

Jose is a regular So-crates (and if you didn't pronounce it like Bill & Ted, I don't know if we can be friends)

Jose is a regular So-crates (and if you didn’t pronounce it like Bill & Ted, I don’t know if we can be friends)

This sounds like the plot of a bad made-for-tv Lifetime movie. Maybe I'll pen the script myself & get Jose to play himself.

This sounds like the plot of a bad made-for-tv Lifetime movie. Maybe I’ll pen the script myself & get Jose to play himself. Romance ensues. I think Jose could probably take Jody on.

Concerned friend. I know if I was in North Korea, I'd want Jose to have my back.

Concerned friend. I know if I was in North Korea, I’d want Jose to have my back.

I don't even know. There are no words.

I don’t even know. There are no words.

someone is definitely a little grumpy. Also, would Jose like to be the pot or the kettle? (or maybe the walkman or hypercolor tee shirt? you know, both relics of the 90s)

someone is definitely a little grumpy. Also, would Jose like to be the pot or the kettle? (or maybe the walkman or hypercolor tee shirt? you know, both relics of the 90s)

Jose Bill Nye 1

Aww, Jose feels bad. Hugs for Bill (but, Bill, I wouldn’t go taking that hug. His arms look like they could strangle a boa constrictor. And not the baby kind)

Where did we find out entertainment before the internet, seriously.

Were professional athletes always this crazy and we just didn’t know about it? I mean, if Wilt Chamberlain or Mickey Mantle had twitter or foursquare, do you think it would have been all, “getting my drink on with my boys!”, ‘checking in’ at strip clubs and bars, and maybe a “lady counter” for Chamberlain (you know, so he could keep track of his conquests)? Could you IMAGINE the psycho ramblings of a Ty Cobb (hello, racism. See also: John Rocker). Or “Broadway Joe” Namath? Or Bill “Spaceman” Lee? John McEnroe (the epic twitter meltdown would have happened)? Or even Billy Martin (he could have a counter of the number of times he was fired as Yankee Skipper)?

Since we’ll never know, we’ll have to make due with the current crop of crazies (other than Jose):

Tonya Harding would also be a win on twitter, but I don’t think she’s taken up that mantle yet. So this is my formal invitation to

Dear Tonya— PLEASE GET ON TWITTER! THE WORLD NEEDS TO KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS ON EVERYTHING!

Signed, the world.

Pretend Husband of the Day: Jon Hunstman Edition

See this guy?

huntsman_0

Why am I smiling? Because I am a spectacular human being.

That’s Jon Huntsman. He’s a former Governor of Utah, former Ambassador to Singapore and China, and a former GOP Presidential candidate.

He is also a badass. And my pretend husband of the day.

“But, Stacey,” you may ask. “He’s a scrawny white Mormon Republican from Utah. I think you and I have very different versions of what the definition of a ‘badass’ is.”

I would normally agree with you. The other white Mormon Republican who ran for President is pretty boring. Good man.  Not very exciting. Very status quo.

But after after Huntsman penned this opinion piece in the American Conservative last week, I changed my mind. Jon Huntsman IS a badass. The subject of his essay? Marriage Equality. As in, EVERYONE should have the right to marry the person they love (with obvious exceptions: you can’t marry your brother, your cat, or a Kardashian).

Marriage equality has been a huge area of consternation for the Grand Old Party. Since the party has been taken over by psychos on the religious right (Hi, Rick Santorum! I don’t miss you! Even though you DO look like Bob Saget), same-sex marriage has overtaken abortion as the single most divisive issue within the Republican Party. In August at the National Convention, convention go-ers adopted a strongly worded platform banning gay marriage, angering more middle-of-the-road Republicans. Opponents of same-sex marriage like Santorum, who recently said gay marriage isn’t in the best interest for the country, and Maggie Gallagher, who started the National Association for Marriage, have been very vocal and have been let to speak for the right as a whole, letting the party of Lincoln and Roosevelt be known as anti-gay, therefore, anti-civil rights.

And that’s not right.

I don’t know where this hatred (and, yes, I’m using the word hatred. It’s not minor disgust or disapproval. This is hatred) of the gay community comes from. Some point to the Bible, screeching “It’s in here! God said it’s a sin.” Not to split hairs or anything, but the Bible also forbids a lot of things that many of us are guilty of doing daily. A sampling? getting a tattoo, working on the Sabbath, women speaking in Houses of God, eating a ham sandwich (this also include bacon. yikes), children disobeying their parents, and (I’ve saved the best for last)–GOSSIP.

Yup, The Bible also forbids gossip. If you’re basing your entire hatred for gays because the Bible says so, you should also probably look at the other areas of your life. Chances are, you’ve probably eaten ham or bacon and I’d be willing to stake a paycheck that you’ve engaged in a little gossip (or at very least, visited Perez Hilton). Should we be banning bacon and ham and forcing Perez, Entertainment Tonight and US Weekly to shut down because “It’s against the moral fabric of society”?

I don’t think so.

So, unless the National Organization for Marriage, Focus on the Family, and the dozens of other Anti-Same-Sex Marriage groups trolling around also want to pick up the “Anti-Bacon” mantle, I don’t put much stock into their opinion. And all that business about how two dudes wanting to get marriage and raise a family is going to be destructive to the country, I say really? I can think of lots of things that are WAY more destructive to society than two people deciding to commit to eachother. Namely, the Jersey Shore, the Kardashians, and every single one of these people.

The point is, somewhere along the way, the GOP became synonymous with being hateful. And if you dared speak out against the psychos on the right wing, you got booted out of the party or labeled a RINO. They liked the status quo and didn’t want anyone to make waves. Publicly disagreeing with “those in charge” meant you’d be pushed off the national stage and left for dead. Instead of meaningful discourse, those that had a different view (be it on marriage, abortion, gun laws, etc.), sat silent while the same psychos on the religious right took over. Having a “liberal” view on social policies, especially, meant certain (political) death.

Which is why Huntsman’s essay on embracing and championing gay rights is pretty badass. Risking a political future because he can’t sit and watch crazies on the right dictate BAD POLICY is pretty badass (in my opionion). A key exerpt:

Today we have an opportunity to do more: conservatives should start to lead again and push their states to join the nine others that allow all their citizens to marry. I’ve been married for 29 years. My marriage has been the greatest joy of my life. There is nothing conservative about denying other Americans the ability to forge that same relationship with the person they love.All Americans should be treated equally by the law, whether they marry in a church, another religious institution, or a town hall.

That was last week. This week over 100 Republicans signed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to declare gay couples have a constitutional right to wed, including Huntsman, former head of EBay (and CA gubernatorial nominee) Meg Whitman, Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Former Governor Christine Todd Whitman,  and John McCain’s campaign head Steve Schmidt. The brief was orchestrated by former RNC Chair Ken Mehlman, who came out two years ago and has received some serious media attention.

I say: it’s about time.

Yesterday, Republican speechwriter-turned-author David Frum wrote in the Daily Beast about his decision to add his name to the brief. Frum, who had been a long-time opponent of gay marriage, has had what can be described as a “Come to Jesus Moment”, saying,  “Stopping same-sex marriages does nothing to support families battered by economic adversity. Instead, it excludes and punishes people who seek only to live as conservatives would urge them to live. Treating same-sex partnerships differently from husband-wife marriages only serves to divide and antagonize those who ought to be working together.”

Exactly. It’s heartening to see prominent Republicans like Gov. Huntsman and Frum speaking up and recognizing basic rights. The economy is still in the toilet and thousands of Americans are still out of work. Rather than screech about how Tom and Eddie’s marriage is going to cause the downfall of humanity, we should be focusing on ways to ensure Tom and Eddie have jobs to take care of their children.

And, in case you needed further convincing (which, I don’t know why you would), look at this

if your heart didn't melt, I suspect you don't have one

if your heart didn’t melt, I suspect you don’t have one

*disclosure: I am a Republican. I support the party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Coolidge and Reagan. Not the party of Foster Friess, Maggie Gallagher and Rick Santorum.

Oscar Predictions 2013

The 85th annual Academy Awards are scheduled to start in just a few short hours. Some may call them “The Superbowl for people who don’t care about football” (which I suppose makes the Superbowl the Academy Awards for people who don’t care about award shows). In either case it’s basically a bunch of famous people under one roof being all self-congratulatory in front of the cameras.

In both cases, I can’t get enough.

Last year, I attempted to liveblog the event, but got bored halfway through (aka fell asleep). I’m giving it my second attempt this year, but no promises. I’m watching it at the BFF’s house and she has a nine-month old who is MUCH more interesting than ‘Best Sound Mixing’.

So, just in case I get lost in a few (hundred) games of peek-a-boo, I wanted to at very least, give my Oscar predictions. But only in the categories that aren’t boring. Again, sorry ‘Best Sound Mixing’, but I don’t really care about you.

So, without wasting any more time, here’s how I see the Oscars 2013 going:

Best Picture:  Amour, Argo, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Les Misérables, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook, Zero Dark Thirty

What will win: Argo

What should win: Lincoln

I liked Argo, don’t get me wrong. In fact, I think there were a lot of really great movies out this year. Chuckie from Good Will Hunting made a really excellent film AND was able to convince Alan Arkin and John Goodman to film pretty much all of their scenes together. It is basically a win.

However, I don’t think it was the BEST movie of the year. Despite being a film that was essentially made to win awards, Lincoln was far and away the best movie I saw all year (and not just because I’m a history nerd…although that helps).

Best Actor in a Leading Role: Bradley Cooper, Daniel Day-Lewis, Hugh Jackman, Joaquin Phoenix, Denzel Washington

Who will win: Daniel Day-Lewis

Who should win: Daniel Day-Lewis

Sorry everyone not named “Daniel Day-Lewis”, but you are going to lose. It’s not even a contest. In any other year, any of the other nominees would have had a chance, but DDL just KILLED IT as the 16th President. He was perfect. Almost as perfect as this scene from Last Of The Mohicans

Best Actress in a Leading Role: Jessica Chastain, Jennifer Lawrence, Emmanuelle Riva, Quvenzhané Wallis, Naomi Watts

Who will win: Jennifer Lawrence

Who should win: Naomi Watts

To be honest, the only performance I saw was Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty and she was quite good. But all of the buzz is surrounding Jennifer Lawrence this year. Personally, I’d like to see Naomi Watts win for no other reason than to stick it to her former (or maybe current?) BFF, Nicole Kidman who was too busy to film a 60 Minutes segment for her bestie after her nominations (Botox injections is apparently a full-time job these days)

Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Alan Arkin, Robert DeNiro, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Tommy Lee Jones, Christoph Waltz

Who will win: toss up, but likely Robert DeNiro

Who should win: Alan Arkin or Christoph Waltz

This is probably the closest call in all of the categories. Literally, ANY of these guys could win and they’d all be deserving. I didn’t see Silver Linings, but, like J-Law, there has been mad buzz around DeNiro’s performance. He’s due for a win, especially considering this is probably the best role he’s been able to get in over a decade.

Personally, I’d go with either Alan Arkin. He essentially plays the same character over and over again, but does it with such aplumb and charisma that you can’t help but throw every conceivable accolade at him. If not Arkin, I’d give the hardware to Christoph Waltz, who made everyone want to become a dentist-turned-bounty hunter with a BFF named Django.

Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Amy Adams, Anne Hathaway, Helen Hunt, Sally Field, Jacki Weaver

Who will win: Anne Hathaway

Who should win: Anne Hathaway

By far the weakest category, but it doesn’t matter. Anne Hathaway will win. I didn’t see The Master or The Sessions, so I have no opinion on Amy Adams or Helen Hunt (same with Silver Linings and Jacki Weaver), but I did see Lincoln and thought Sally Field was nothing special and actually, incredibly annoying as Mary Todd Lincoln. The best thing about Field’s performance? Frank Caliendo’s review of Lincoln as Jim Rome where he called Field “Mary Todd Gidget”.

Best Director: Amour (Michael Haneke), Beasts of the Southern Wild (Benh Zeitlin), Life of Pi (Ang Lee), Silver Linings Playbook (David O. Russell), Lincoln (Steven Spielberg)

Who will win: Steven Spielberg

Who should win: Kathryn Bigelow. Oh wait, she wasn’t nominated.

Spielberg will win. Since Ben Affleck and Kathryn Bigelow were both snubbed, I’d be surprised if anyone walked away with the Oscar that wasn’t Spielberg.

On that note, I’ll leave everyone with the promise to be back later for a liveblog. But, before I do, let’s all watch that Daniel Day-Lewis Last of the Mohicans scene one more time.

*sigh* Perfection.

I still hate you, Christina Aguilera, but you have an excellent song

There’s a scene from Mean Girls (one of my favorite movies of ALL TIMES) that’s pretty poignant (no, not “You go, Glenn Coco” or, my personal favorite “You smell like a baby prostitute”).

Damien is singing at the school’s holiday pageant (not very well), but clearly giving it his all, despite being booed and heckled. Hell, he even gets sassy in the middle of the song and fights back.

While it’s clearly a very funny scene (um, hello, isn’t ALL of Mean Girls basically perfect?), there’s a certain seriousness to it.

Some may not get it.

But I do.

A few months ago, my one of my perennial favorite ladies, Jennifer Weiner, wrote an essay in Allure Magazine called “The F Word”. The dreaded word so many women beat themselves up over (and over and over again)? Fat. After past-his-prime critic Rex Reed insulted actress Melissa McCarthy by calling her “tractor-sized” and a “female hippo” last week, (and his refusal to apologize), I wanted to share J-Wein’s gem of an essay.

Jen gets it. We’re chubby soul sisters.

To summarize (but really, just go and read it for yourself—it’s worth spending a few minutes), Weiner recalls a recent conversation with her nine-year-old daughter, Lucy. Lucy is complaining about a “frenemy” (come on ladies—we all had/have them) and in explaining why she doesn’t like this girl, she says, “She’s mean, she’s bad at math, she’s terrible at kickball. And…she’s fat.”

Weiner, who calls herself “a size 16 on a good day,” then is forced to have a talk with her “blithe, leggy, honey-blonde daughter,” about using the “f word.” Weiner explains, “I’d spent the nine years since her birth getting ready for this day, the day we’d have to have the conversation about this dreaded, stinging word. I had a well-honed, consoling speech at the ready. I knew exactly what to say to the girl on the receiving end of the taunts and the teasing, but in all of my imaginings, it never once occurred to me that my daughter would be the one who used the F word. Fat.”

Weiner then recounts her own struggles (and shame) with her weight. In reading it, I saw myself. In recalling incidents from her life, I cried. I cried for Jennifer. I cried for every girl who has ever been taunted, mocked or made to feel she’s ugly, unworthy or unlovable. And I cried for myself. But, in truth, I didn’t need to read Jennifer’s accounts of her life. I’ve lived it.

I’ve struggled with my weight for nearly as long as I can remember. And, like Jennifer, I’ve never been at a point in my life when I haven’t been keenly aware of my size. A particular passage of her essay stuck with me:

There are five girls named Jennifer making their way across the Promised Land with my group that summer. “Oh, not the fat Jennifer,” I hear one of my tour mates saying matter-of-factly to another as we hang out by our kibbutz swimming pool, holding his hands out a good foot away from his hips to indicate my girth, “the other one.” So that is me: not the Jennifer who loves to read, or who listens to the Smiths and is the most sought-after babysitter in town. Not the Jennifer on the honor roll, the one who can swim a mile without stopping: the fat one.

I am incandescent with shame, knowing that fat is, by far, the worst thing you can be. Fat is lazy, fat is gross, fat is sloppy…and, worst of all, fat is forever. Michelle has a full-on Frida Kahlo moustache. Kim has terrible skin. But Michelle could wax and Kim could go on Accutane; I am going to be fat—and, hence, undesirable, unlovable, a walking joke—for the rest of my life.

It’s like Jennifer got into my brain, pulling out all of the fears, insecurities, and feelings I had supressed for most of my life. And she nailed it. I’m not Stacey with a killer sense of humor, who loves to read, and listen the Black Keys and Grace Potter and is great at her job. No, those things aren’t important. I’m Stacey—the fat one. That’s the only identifier that matters. And, for a long long LONG time, I believed that.

Jen managed to put down what every girl struggling with her weight is afraid of: I am going to be fat—and, hence, undesirable, unlovable, a walking joke—for the rest of my life.

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Rock of Ages: if Chuck Norris and Clay Aiken sang hair metal on ‘Glee’ (or “Why is that monkey dressed like Muammar Gaddafi?”)

Unless you live some strange ascetic life, there’s little doubt you’ve heard a little something about the new movie musical Rock of Ages. Based on a hit Broadway musical, RoA (as I’m calling it, pronounced “Row-ah”), is seeking to following the footsteps of such hit movie musicals like GlitterXanadu, and the tour de force From Justin to Kelly. [side note: I think I’m one of two people to actually pay money to go see FJTK. The other? Probably my friend, Nathan. But seriously, how could we NOT go see it:

 ]

But really, RoA wasn’t really a bad movie. In fact, somewhere in there is a pretty terrific movie (but more on that later)

Let’s start with the good:

Paul Giamatti (playing a greedy manager), looked suspiciously like Gallagher (but without the watermelons), had a sweet bald-ish/afro-ish ponytailed mullet, enough sweet suits to make Sonny Crockett jealous, and Zach Morris’s cell phone. He was every bit the opportunistic sleazeball and even belted out a few bars of Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again.” It was fabulous. And I couldn’t get enough.

“Hello, Stacee Jaxx’s manager’s phone.”

Also good? Mary J. Blige, who  proves again she is the Queen of Awesome and can do no wrong. She’s not the best actress, but let’s be honest. When you can sing like that, who cares if her acting chops are a little lacking. And as the only real professional singer of the lot (Sorry Julianne Hough. One shitty country song does not make you a professional.), I expected her to be amazing.

Catherine Zeta Jones (aka Mrs. Douglas), Alec Baldwin and the former Mr.Katy Perry were also bright spots in their (brief) time on screen. In one of the strangest scenes CZJ belts out “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” with a chorus of women that look like they robbed a Laura Ashley Store in a church, while her husband (the ever delightful Bryan Cranston) proceeds to get a little 50 Shades of Grey with his mistress nearby. Uncomfortable to watch? No more than actually READING 50 Shades. Besides, CZJ is actually a pretty good singer. And the clothes are so hilarious, it makes the scene worth it.

I’m not entirely convinced Baldwin and Brand did much acting. Baldwin paraded around in a leopard print shirt and a TERRIBLE wig. He also attended the “Chuck Norris Vocal Academy” as his “singing” was more in the vein of Chuck Norris than say Chuck Berry.

The crew gave Russell Brand an equally terrible wig, for reasons I can’t comprehend. I’m pretty if the director had said “Hey, Russell. We need you to cut your hair into a feathered mullet,” I’m pretty sure Brand would have been game. This is the guy who once dressed up like Osama bin Laden. I think he could have handled a bad haircut.

Now for the GREAT:

Tom Cruise. In a word: fantastic. In a few words: completely bloody fantastic. No, really. He was. I wanted to think he was terrible and/or wrong for the part. I wanted to laugh at him. But I couldn’t. He was just too good. He played aging rock star Stacee Jaxx with a little bit of Axl, a little bit of Keith (Richards) and a little bit of a cult leader speaking only in “wise proverbs” (maybe he got some inspiration at the Scientology Center in LA?). He was just the right amounts charming (for all of Tom’s weird personal faults, he’s effortlessly charming on screen), bizarre, and oddly sexual (seriously. The guy’s pushing 50 and looks bangin’, yo.)  Plus, he had a monkey named “Hey Man” that he dressed like a little Muammar Gaddafi. Because why WOULDN’T you want to have a pet monkey that shared the stylin’ ways of a horrific Libyan dictator?!

“Sweet hat, Muammar. I have one just like it at home”
image courtesy of perez

Which brings us to the bad.

The two leads. In a word: unnecessary. In a few words: completely and totally unnecessary. I was more interested in Stacee Jaxx, Russell Brand and Alec Baldwin’s strange relationship, and even CZJ’s turn as Head Tea Partier (I’m pretty sure she prepped for the role by watching a lot of Glenn Beck. Minus the crying.)

Diego Boneta is a cute kid with a great voice. If the Z GuyEE-Z (the supremely terrible boy band Giamatti-Gallagher put together) had been a real group back in the late 80s, I totally would have been obsessed with them, writing “I ❤ Joshy Z” all over my notebooks. Had he a better co-star that he had actual chemistry with, he probably would have been even better.

Which brings me to Julianne Hough. Forgive me, but I can’t figure out why this girl is A- famous and B – still getting acting/singing work. She’s a gorgeous girl and a phenomenal dancer. But her acting and vocal ability is about as good as you’ll find in a community theater production of Oklahoma (and I know. I’ve seen such productions.) Halfway through the movie I wished she’d just pack up and take her “Sister Christian” ass back to Oklahoma and leave the movie to the grownups. I didn’t like her character, not because the character was unlikeable, but because Hough just isn’t a good enough actress or singer to make me care about her.

Like I said before, there’s a terrific movie buried in here. Tom Cruise, Malin Ackerman (who I love love love! seriously adorable, that one), Baldwin, Cathy Jones and Queen Mary J were all woefully underused. I would have preferred some character development from Stacee and explored him a bit more. Make HIM the central figure. Diego and Julianne could really be cut and the movie would have still worked. It just would have been about an aging rock star trying to stay relevant in the age of boy bands. Keep CZJ and Cranston, Baldwin and Brand and expand Mary J’s role. Maybe she and Stacee strike up an unlikely friendship after he starts coming to the strip club. I’m totally just spitballin’ here.

The big problem (aside from a completely miscast Julianne Hough) is that the movie isn’t quite sure what it wants to be. Is it a serious musical (like Jersey Boys) or a parody (in the vein of Spinal Tap)? I don’t think the cast was even on the same page. The leads were so earnest that you really bought they thought they were in The Graduate: The Musical rather than Xanadu: the Sequel. However, Baldwin, Brand and Cruise all seemed to realize the movie was ridiculous (and a farce) and played their characters accordingly. The result was a disjointed (and at times painful) 2+ hours.

But all is not lost, there were some great performances (particularly Tom Cruise) and some terrific–and terrifically funny—moments (the Baldwin and Brand duet. I won’t spoil it for you, but it’s HILARIOUS). The music, for the most part, is really fun. Queen Mary J SLAYS on Pat Benatar’s “Shadows of the Night” (my wish is for her to actually release it as a single. It’s that good)  and Tom Cruise was a surprise vocally and sang his ass of. While his “Wanted Dead or Alive” isn’t quite as good as Bon Jovi’s, it was good enough to make me want to hear it again. With some tweaking, rewrites and editing, Rock of Ages has the potential to be a great film. Unfortunately, the reality falls flat.

“You’re tacky and I hate you”

When I was driving home the other day (ugh, that sounds just like the beginning to every horrible story my high school biology teacher, Mr. Mott used to tell us. Except his usually started with “When I was walking to school this morning…” and yes, he walked to school every morning. And yes, there were considerable times I considered running him over with my car.) a radio ad for Pier One came on and I was sufficiently perplexed. (I spent WAY too much time trying to find the audio for it. Next time I hear it, I’ll try and record it.)

Perhaps you’ve heard it. It stars a mom named “Leigh” who is attending some sort of support group. I’m not quite sure the purpose of said support group, but I don’t think the ad people considered the weirdos out there like me that have to dissect everything. So, “Leigh” tells the group that her kids complained that their backyard was boring and they wanted a trampoline. Well, in “Leigh’s” world, there will be no trampoline. I imagine it’s akin to having broken down automobiles, trailers or garden gnomes in the yard (aka the “White Trash Special”). So what does she do to liven up the yard?

Well go to Pier One, of course! To buy new lawn furniture! Because what kid doesn’t want a new outdoor chaise lounge. ESPECIALLY if it comes from Pier One.

Oh wait. I know. EVERY.SINGLE.KID.IN.THE.HISTORY.OF.THE.WORLD.

Except for maybe this one.

When I was growing up, my siblings and I begged our parents for a trampoline (And, yes, we were eventually victorious. We jumped the crap out of that thing.). If they had come home sans trampoline and instead, had new patio furniture, we definitely would have mutinied. And I’m not kidding. When my folks told us we’d likely be moving to Chicago, my brother E got so enraged, he punched a hole in a wall (to be fair he was only 8, but thanks to him, they had to re-wallpaper an entire wall in their two-story foyer. To this day you can tell which wall because the coloring is slightly off). Moral of the story: unless you want your kids going all “Braveheart” on you, if they ask for a trampoline, don’t buy a new patio table and chairs. It won’t go over well.

Unless of course, this is your kid.

 

And in that case, I still wouldn’t spring new outdoor furniture on him. He STILL may mutiny. Especially if your taste runs more Bobby Trendy than Nate Berkus.

“and for just $100,000,000 I can make your house look just like this!” image courtesy of TMZ

What would YOU do with the Stanley Cup?

I’m not much of a hockey fan. Scratch that. I’m not a hockey fan at all. Not because I think hockey’s boring (I don’t) but mostly because C-L-E doesn’t have an NHL team and I feel weird cheering on a team that doesn’t “belong” to me. [side note: this feeling, of course, is null and void when it comes to whatever team is playing against the Miami Heat. I’ll cheer until I’m blue in the face. LeBron James has become my own personal Moriarty. Except he has no clue about my existence and even if he did, he probably couldn’t care less that a(nother) white girl from Cleveland wished for his demise. And I’ve clearly been watching WAY too much BBC Sherlock] Besides, I only have so much time to be depressed about professional sports. Three teams is my limit and I’ve already sold my heart and soul to the Indians (sads), Cavs (double sads) and the Browns (infinite sads). My poor little psyche couldn’t withstand ANOTHER losing team (because I? am not a frontrunner).

But I do have friends that are MAJOR hockey fans. Unfortunately most of them are Pens fans and I ,in good conscience, can’t root for anything that comes from Pittsburgh. Except for the phrase “yinz.” I love rooting for awesome slang.

What I DO root for, however, are super fan-freaking-tastic sporting traditions. It’s the history nut in my combined with my super competitive nature. And one of the best is the NHL’s Stanley Cup.

Suck it, Flat Stanley. I’ve been to way more fun places

Unlike a Super Bowl Trophy or World Series Trophy, the Cup gets passed between the members of the winning team and it’s become tradition for players to find the most outrageous/ridiculous scenarios and put the Cup in them. Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks took the Stanley Cup to Niagara Falls, the Pittsburgh Penguins took the Cup for a swim in Mario Lemieux’s pool (I can’t believe I just typed that sentence), Sylvain Lefebvre of the Colorado Avalanche had his daughter baptized from the Cup, and (not to be left out) Mark Messier of the Edmonton Oilers took the Cup to his favorite strip club, the Forum Inn, in which it starred in a dance with a stripper.

So when the LA Kings won their first Stanley Cup, I was excited to see what hijinks the Cup would see. More strip clubs? Perhaps a visit to the Playboy Mansion (come on, they ARE in LA), maybe taking it to East LA and start a street fight between the Bloods and the Crips?

I was wrong. What happened was WAY better.

The Kings’  right wing (and Captain) Dustin Brown’s sons used the Cup to drink chocolate milk.

I don’t know what’s cuter: the blowing bubbles or the matching Spiderman pajamas. Or maybe the giggling.

What a (literally) sweet moment for the Stanley Cup. Kids in Spiderman pajamas should ALWAYS drink chocolate milk out of Championship cups. ALWAYS. And someone should always be filming. It’d be like the new LOLcats. Except way better.

Although, this photo of Chuck Liddell and an Oompa Loompa with the Cup is pretty damn amazing. I wonder if Willy Wonka showed up later to fill it with Fizzy Lifting Drink?

photo from yahoo sports