What's something you often must do that's a complete waste of time? Navigate those stupid computerized answering machines... "press one to check the status of an order... press two to place a new order... press three for technical support..." oh how I loathe wasting time trapped in voicemail hell.
Who's a public figure you wish would stop wasting everybody's time? Bill Gates. If this asshat can't get his Microsoft Windows shit working for a simple demo at CES, what chance do his customers have? How much time do people waste every single day because of his bug-ridden piece-of-crap OS? And now he equates free culture advocates (such as myself) as "modern-day sort of communists." Well f#@% you Bill, it's only a matter of time before people wake up and overhaul the inane copyrights that restrict creativity in music, film, and expressive media (and also ridiculous patents held by tech-whores like you that are killing real progress in the industry). The Creative Commies have risen...
What's something you'd like to do more of if you had extra free time? Well, if it were summer time, I'd say riding my motorcycle... but during the winter months I guess I'd have to say reading.
FQ CLOCK: What time is it where you're at right now, and what time zone are you in? It's 1:56am and I am in the Pacific Time Zone of the USA. If I stay up for another hour, I'm hoping I can sleep in until at least 7:30am.
Have a good time at the FridayQ.
What happened the last time you needed help? I forgot my wallet at home when I went to the gas station this past Sunday. Fortunately I saw somebody I knew that could help me out with a $20 instant loan.
What happened the last time you helped somebody else? A friend hurt himself while moving into a new apartment and was laid up, so I helped him put his motorcycle into storage for the winter.
What happened the last time you helped yourself? I cancelled my subscription to Showtime which helped me out on two levels... 1) It helps me financially by saving me $12 each month, and 2) It helps me psychologically by dealing with rage I feel over Showtime ass-clowns cancelling the brilliant Dead Like Me.
FQ ASSIST: Do something to help somebody today! Got a few extra dollars? Donate it to the Tsunami Relief Efforts (like the Red Cross at Amazon) or some other worthy cause. Don't have a few dollars to spare? Take a minute and use a FREE "click-to-donate" site (like The Hunger Site) or other worthy activity. How did you help today? I ran the gamut of free clicks at The Hunger Site, The Breast Cancer Site, The Child Health Site, The Literacy Site, The Rainforest Site, and the Animal Rescue Site... then donated a bit of cash at Doctors Without Borders. If my apartment allowed pets and I didn't have to travel all the time, I'd go to the local animal shelter and adopt a cat or a puppy.
Help is on the way at the FridayQ.
What's a new food or drink you've tried? Just two days ago I was at the mini market and saw new "Doritos Black Pepper Jack" chips (with black ground pepper and pepper-jack cheese) and new "Mountain Dew Pitch Black" (Mountain Dew Cola with a splash of black grape juice), and thought I'd give them a try. How'd it go? The Doritos were hot/spicy and pretty good! The Mountain Dew Black was terrible, and tasted like toxic waste.
What's a new television show or movie you've seen or book you've read? I gave the new show Point Pleasant a try last night, and started reading a new book Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell last week. How'd it go? Well, Point Pleasant is supposed to be a soap opera with dark elements, by telling the story of what happens when the devil's daughter washes up on the rich and pretty shores of a New Jersey city. Unfortunately, it's pretty boring... not dark enough to be engaging and not soap-opera enough to be entertaining. I fared better with Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, which is a novel about how England lost it's magical arts by the 1800's, and engages the assistance of the mysterious Mr. Norrell (who seems to actually have magical talents) to help fight the Napoleonic wars. It's a bit slow, but masterfully written and hard to put down.
What's a new place you've been to or web site you've visited? The last new place would probably be the new "Fabulous Footwear" shop in Wenatchee (brand name shoes at discount prices!). And a site that I've recently discovered is Map24, which is a nifty Java-based map and route planner with really cool features. How'd it go? Fabulous Footwear didn't have anything I wanted. Map24 is amazing, and it will be hard to go back to MapQuest after having played with it.
FQ NEW: Do the new! What's something new you've been wanting to try but haven't? Play Halo2 and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas What's stopping you? I don't have time for Halo2 and don't own a PlayStation2 to play Andreas.
Try something new with the FridayQ.
Share a health or beauty tip! For obvious reasons, I'm fresh out of beauty tips. But I do have a discovery if you've got problem skin. When I was younger I had to take an acne drug called Acutane that has some pretty harsh side-effects, one of which is extremely dry skin. For years I tried anything and everything, but nothing worked. Until I found "Hope in a Jar" by Philosophy. Expensive, but a real life-saver if you need it.
Share a computer or electronic gadget tip! If you haven't discovered RSS aggregators yet, it's worth a look. Reading blogs and news sites via syndication saves a lot of time, and allows you to follow hundreds of sources with ease because you don't have to go out and visit each and every site, instead they come to you! If you don't want to install software, you can use a free online service (like Bloglines) to read RSS news feeds as well. Oh, and Mac users who are upgrading to iLife 05 will want to be sure and make a backup of their iPhoto libraries, as there have been some pretty major problems reported.
Share a travel or transportation tip! This is not news to people living in Europe, but I'm surprised how many Americans are unawares: Buying tickets direct from small airline carriers can save you some major bank over the mainline carriers... even those sold on discount sites like Priceline, Expedia, and Orbitz. For instance, the cheapest flight to Rome is not necessarily direct. You might be better off finding a cheap sale flight to London, then taking another carrier to Rome. I've saved literally hundreds doing this. Sure it's a pain to organize and more difficult to fix when delays happen, but the money to be saved is mind-boggling. An excellent European resource can be found at WikiTravel (they've also got a page for Asia). I love airlines like EasyJet, RyanAir, GermanWings, Iceland Air, and the like because, with careful planning and some flexibility, I can take trips I ordinarily couldn't afford.
FQ TIPSTER: Got a tip for a classic or vintage CD, movie, TV show, or book we might have overlooked? One of my all-time favorite TV shows is Red Dwarf, a British comedy series that's available many places on DVD or in reruns. The show tells the story of Dave Lister, who wakes from accidental cryogenic freezing that lasted three million years. Aboard the massive mining ship Red Dwarf, Lister has many space-faring adventures while coming to terms with being the last surviving human, and trying to find his way back to earth. While it is a Sci-Fi show, anybody who loves comedy should give it a look (Series V is my favorite).
Whatever you do, don't get Rimmer upset or else Mr. Flibble will become very cross indeed!
Helpful tips abound at the FridayQ.
I write questions for the FridayQ weeks in advance, and already had a set ready for today. But, after reading an entry over at "My So Called Strife," I decided to use the questions for three weeks from now instead (and then modified them a bit), since they fit well into a question Kirkitsch was asking over at his blog...
On average, how many hours of sleep do you get each night? Four to Five. Do you think that's a good number? No, but it's all my body seems to need, so that's all I seem to get.
Have you any sleep essentials? A nightlight or teddy bear perhaps? Must the door and closet be either closed or open? I don't. With all the traveling I do, I kind of have to be able to fall asleep anywhere and under any conditions. I prefer total darkness and absolute quiet, as I find it easier to sleep that way, but I can do without them if need be.
What do you wear to bed? Boxer shorts and sometimes a T-shirt. What color are your sheets? Solid blue. How many pillows under your head? Two.
FQ BIG SLEEP: Share some helpful advice you use when having trouble falling asleep. I usually watch some television stacked on the TiVo or read a book or surf the internet. Not eating two hours before bedtime is also helpful.
Get tired of the FridayQ.
What's a sound that makes you happy? My motorcycle. Any motorcycle, really. Makes you sad? A wounded animal.
What's a sound that makes you angry? The alert sound on a Windows PC. When I'm at an airport trying to read a book while on a layover, and some Windows-using idiot has the volume on their laptop full blast, and then you hear that stupid "plink" "plink" sound I just want to get up and smash the damn thing. Ditto for the Windows start-up sound. Makes you calm? Thunder and rain. I love the sound of a summer storm.
What's a sound that makes you hungry? Elizabeth Hurley or popcorn popping (even though I don't eat much popcorn). I'd probably lose control of all my bodily functions if Elizabeth Hurley were to read me poetry while heating up some Jiffy Pop. Makes you lose your appetite? It's a toss-up between Judge Judy and those sounds on an episode of CSI where they've got a bullet tearing through tissue or something like that. Ugh.
FQ AUDIBLE: What sounds are you hearing right now? The television, a neighbor's car, the refrigerator, and a train rumbling in the distance.
Take a listen at the FridayQ.
The Texpatriate has tagged me! Now I've got "Karla's Bitch" spray-painted on my forehead. Oh... wait a second... it's not a graffiti tag, it's a meme tag. Well, that's okay too. Here we go:
Total amount of music files on your computer? According to iTunes, I am currently at 4628 songs. And I'm pretty sure all of them are legal except one: Tarzan Boy, by Baltimora. It's not available digitally at the iTunes Music Store, and I can't find the CD Living in the Background to purchase the song because it's out of print. Since Steve Jobs has stated that he would gladly offer every song ever released on the iTMS, I can only guess that it's the record labels that are the hold-up. Illegal downloading was my only option.
The last CD you bought was... Well, I don't really buy CD's anymore, I purchase all my music from iTunes Music Store so I don't have a piece of plastic to throw out. The last albums I bought from iTMS would be Green Day's excellent American Idiot, and Nightbird by Erasure. Too many terrific 80's synth-pop melodies on that one! I Broke it All in Two and Breathe are absolutely beautiful songs...
What was the last song you listened to before reading this message? Hmmm... last night before I went to bed I was listening to my iPod Shuffle while reading. I think the song would be Closer by Nine Inch Nails.
Write down five songs you often listen to or that mean a lot to you. All my music means a lot to me. It is so very hard to narrow down thousands of favorites to just five... I wouldn't even know where to begin. Since Valentine's Day has just passed, let's talk about love: Don't Answer Me by the Alan Parson's Project (a concert I went to with my best friend who has since departed this mortal plane). Every Breath You Take by The Police (17 years old in a New Orlean's hotel). If You Were Here by the Thompson Twins (first love). Barrel of a Gun by Depeche Mode (love gone very wrong). And Rebel Yell by Billy Idol (the words pretty much speak for themselves).
What 3 people are you going to pass this baton to and why? Gee, there was a "Music Shuffle Meme" not so long ago that gave me an idea of what people are listening to, so I should probably try to find some people who I don't think answered it? I'll pick Ben's Blab, because he recently had an entry about a music playlist but failed to indicate any of the songs or what music he likes. Geekable, because Jeff has incredible taste in music (though I don't think that he "does" memes... a pity). And My So-Called Strife (Kirkkitsch is forever recommending movies, but I have no idea what music he listens to... though I don't think he "does" memes either).
Is that it? Okay then.
Adding a more "world-centric" friendliness to the FridayQ, I'm going to start uploading it to the site Thursday mornings so that those across the International Date Line can access it when it's actually Friday for them (if they so choose).
The FridayQ is interesting to me, because it's a distraction of a wholly personal nature. I made it for me because I missed the Friday Five. It's not meant to be inspiring or have any deep meaning... it's just a quick way to fill up a Friday if you can't think of anything else to write about, (all while revealing a little bit of yourself to your readers that you might not ordinarily get around to mentioning).
For instance, last week a friend was asking me about my recent trip to Europe. After talking about it for a few minutes, he mentioned that he had never been more than a 6-hour drive from the place he was born. This was quite a revelation to me. I'd known him for years, and had no idea. That got me to wondering how many other people never feel the need to venture far from their birthplace.
Thus tomorrow's entry "DISTANCE" was born.
And all the ideas for questions seem to start like that. Something comes up that gets me curious and, viola, it's a FridayQ. What happens then is up to the people who decide to post an entry to their blogs. Some bloggers use the questions as a springboard to write paragraphs of revelations or get something off their chests. Others answer with a single word (sometimes raising more questions than they answer!). Still others use it as a way to test their imaginations with unlikely tales and humorous anecdotes. There is no right way to answer, and it can mean whatever people want it to mean.
And that's all good because it lets me learn a little bit about the bloggers who participate. But mostly because it was never meant to be anything more than a mindless distraction that bloggers can use when they feel like it (or never at all). I just wonder how many questions I've got left in me!
FQ HELPER: It may be helpful to use a globe and a distance calculator for the questions below.
What's the furthest North you've been on this world? What were you doing there? The furthest North I've been is Reykjavik, Iceland (64-degrees North latitude), where I was on layover to see the Hard Rock Cafe there while on my way to Sweden to visit friends and visit another Hard Rock Cafe in Stockholm. It is closely followed by Anchorage, Alaska (61-degrees North latitude), where I was changing planes on the way back from a business trip to Seoul, Korea.
What's the furthest South you've been on this world? What were you doing there? The furthest South I've been is Bali, Indonesia (6-degrees South) where I went to the Hard Rock Resort and Beach Club for vacation. A very cool place if you're looking to get away from it all, by the way!
Where were you born, and what's the furthest you've been from that spot? I was born in San Diego, California (USA) and the furthest I've been from there is Kuala Lumpur at 8883.5 miles / 14296.5 kilometers away. I was in the city during a layover from Singapore to Bali which was arranged so I could see the Hard Rock Cafe there.
FQ AWAY: Name a blog you read that's the most distant from you... whether it be emotionally, culturally, religiously, or by physical loacation. Gee, many blogs I read specifically because they are so distant from me! I suppose rather than just coming up with one of them, I'll run the gamut here. Emotionally, I'd have to say Tonya's Adventure Journalist is furthest from mine... mostly because of her photography, which always strikes an emotional chord with me (different from mine here, which only gets emotional when I rant). Culturally, I'd have to say Healing Iraq is the most distant, because my culture doesn't involve being in the middle of a war zone. Religiously, I'd have to say Shannon Blogs, because the way she applies her faith to daily living is just so over-the-top bizarre to me (albeit in a wholly interesting and captivating way which I respect her for immensely). As for physical location... out of blogs I read regularly that would probably be either Kazza in Sydney, Australia or CoffeeWaffle in Nelson, New Zealand.
Go the distance at the FridayQ.
Are you a collector? If so, what are some of the things you collect? I used to be a huge comic book collector, and still buy about a dozen books each month. Other than that, I collect DVDs, Hard Rock Cafe pins and HRC T-Shirts. I also have quite a collection of postcards, guidebooks, and other crap I've picked up from my travels.
If you could collect anything... no matter how rare or expensive, what would it be? Motorcycles... whether they be rare, not-rare, expensive, cheap, foreign, domestic... it doesn't matter. Any kind of motorcycle at all. If I had Bill Gates money, I'd also collect original works of art by Monet and Diego Rivera, plus glassworks by Dale Chihuly.
Looking around you, what is some ordinary, everyday object you possess that would make an interesting collectable 100 years from now? I'd think my Macintosh G4 Cube would be a pretty cool collectable for some future Mac fanatic.
FQ RECOMMENDED: Are there any public collections you enjoy (museums, galleries, etc.) that we should know about? The Smithsonian is a collection from "America's Attic" that's pretty cool. Though I love museums, and have too many favorites to list, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York is probably the most impressive, simply because the sheer volume of art in their collection.
Collect yourself at the FridayQ.
Who is an actor or director you trust to always make a good film? What is it about their previous works that make you trust them? I've always been a huge fan of Luc Besson, and will watch anything he creates. As for why I trust him, his track record is just stunning. From La Femme Nikita to Leon to The Big Blue to The Fifth Element to The Messenger, his films are a visual feast and smartly written. Even when he doesn't direct, his stories are fantastic (The Transporter comes to mind).
Where is a place you trust to always make a good food? What is it about their previous culinary creations that make you trust them? There are so many places I enjoy eating, that it's tough to pick only one. I think the place that I eat at more often than most is the "Johnny Rockets" chain of burger restaurants. The reason I trust them is because I have never had a bad meal there, never had bad service, never had a bad experience.
What's a company you trust to always make a good product? What is it about their previous stuff that make you trust them? The most obvious choice is Apple, because I worship just about every brilliant thing they've ever released... particularly in these later years. But I am also very loyal to Sony, because the cameras, electronics, and such that I've purchased from them have all been excellent in terms of both function and quality (unlike Panasonic, where I have NEVER had a good experience with a single item I've purchased).
FQ YOU: What is something you do so well that people can absolutely trust you with it? I'm a kick-ass driver, so I'm tempted to say that, but I don't WANT people to trust me for my driving... so, how about planning a trip. I do it so often for myself that I've gotten pretty good at it. What's something that people should never trust you with? Selecting a wine. I don't drink it very often, know nothing about it, and usually make a selection based solely on whether the name sounds "cool." Sometimes I get lucky ("Conundrum" was a brilliant wine with a very cool name), but mostly I do not.
You can trust the FridayQ.
If you could own any item from any movie, what would you take and why? Well, I'd love to have my very own Gort robot from The Day the Earth Stood Still... how cool would that be? My dream of taking over the world would be a piece of cake with Gort there to kick everybody's asses. Or maybe some of the gadgets from the James Bond movies would be handy? Nah, I think the one thing I would want more than any other would be Mace Windu's purple lightsaber from the Star Wars prequels. That way I could open up a can of Samuel L. Jackson-style Jedi whoop-ass all over the stupid people who bug the crap out of me...
If you could become any character from any movie, who would it be and why? Dude! No question, it would be Indiana Jones! He got to run around the world having awesome adventures, finding treasure, and shooting Nazis and stuff! On top of that, if I were Indiana Jones I could literally whip somebody's ass with my bull-whip. That would totally rock...
If you could visit any location from any movie, where would it be and why? Probably inside The Matrix so I could fly around, shoot lots of guns, and go all kung-fu on people who cut me off in traffic...
FQ MOVIE MASH-UP: Combine some items, characters, and locations from different movies to create an entirely new film! What would you call it and what would it be about? I think I'd like to take the chain saw from Texas Chain Saw Massacre, the Alien from Alien, Jason from Friday The 13th, and put them on the ship Discovery with HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Then everybody could battle it out IN OUTER SPACE!! My master-work would then be ready to kick box-office ass and be called: Friday the 13th, 2001: An Alien Chainsaw Massaccre Odyssey. Brilliant! I'd pay serious bank to see that flick.
Be the movies at the FridayQ.
Something green you like to eat... I like frozen peas on my salad, green DOTS candies, and love a slice of lime in a cocktail. But nothing beats a nice Granny Smith apple off the tree, which is a kind of sweet-tart taste that's delicious and invigorating.
Something green you like to wear... My Seattle Sonics T-Shirt. It's old and beaten-up, but I bought it at a Sonics game years ago, and can't bear to part with it because it's so comfy. I also have a Green Bay Packers "Favre" jersey which I save for trips to Wisconsin so that I have adequate camouflage to blend in with the natives.
Something green you like to look at... So many things come immediately to mind. Ireland is so green it almost hurts to look at. I find praying mantis bugs fascinating to watch in a creepy kind of way. I love gemstones, and nicely-cut emeralds are mighty pretty to see. And, of course, I never mind looking at a pile of money, the ultimate green. But, in the end, I'd have to say I like looking at green tree frogs most of all. I used to love frogs as a kid, and these funky little guys are still a favorite.
FQ GALLERY: Post a photo you took (or an illustration you made) of something green.... At first I was going to just post a photo from my iPhoto library, but then I decided I wanted to draw a tree frog. Things kind of got out of hand from there...
But I have some green photos too, like this shot of the Wicklow region of Ireland...
And these avacados artichokes I saw at a market in Barcelona...
And this cool shot of the field in Munich Stadium, where all the seats are green to match, which I thought was a pretty nifty idea...
It's easy being green at the FridayQ.
When is your birthday? March 24th.
Anything interesting happen on your birthday in history? Bilboard published it's very first pop album chart in 1945. Queen Elizabeth I dies in 1603. The Exxon Valdez runs aground in 1989, causing the worst oil spill in U.S. territory. Pink Floyd released Dark Side of the Moon in 1973. And, most interesting of all, Robert Koch announces the discovery of the bacterium responsible for tuberculosis in 1882.
Anybody famous share your birthday? Do you have anything in common with them? Hmmm... Colt's quarterback Peyton Manning (we're both tall... though he's really tall at 6'5"!); Buffy's lesbian witch-friend Willow as played by Alyson Hannigan (She was in the movie American Pie and I like to eat pie); Anorexic, tu-tu wearing Twin Peaks actress Laura Flynn Boyle (we both suffered from dyslexia growing up); Annoying and untalented television personality Star Jones (I think she must like to eat a lot of pie); Fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger (we're both stylin' dudes); Yuki from the Lady Snowblood films herself, Meiko Kaji (we both totally kick ass!); and master magician Harry Houdini (we're both magical).
FQ FUTURE: On your 100th birthday, what year will it be and what do you think you'll be wanting as a present then? It will be the year 2066 and I want my freakin' flying car!! We've been promised flying cars for decades now... surely we should have them in 2066?!? Actually... I'll probably be needing another shot of nanites (teeny-tiny repair robots) injected into me so I can live through the day, so that should really be first on my list.
You say it's your birthday at the FridayQ.
Something foolish you've seen... On the way to work this morning, I saw a woman walking her cat on a leash. The humiliation that this poor cat must have been feeling was priceless.
Something foolish you've heard about... In the "it could only happen in Indiana" department: A company selling cement replicas of famous works like "The Venus di Milo" and Michelangelo's "David" has been ordered to cover these classical works with clothing so as to be in compliance with Indiana state obscenity laws. The best part... the law stipulates that material is obscene and harmful to minors if "considered as a whole, it lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value." Yes, that's right, Venus and David have no artistic value!! Not just foolish... really, really, stupid.
Something foolish you've done recently... Spent an hour looking for a video game yesterday that won't be released until April 5th.
FQ FOOLERY: Tell us of a memorable moment where somebody fooled, punk'd, or pranked you! Given the friends I hang out with, there are so many incidents that it's difficult for me to choose. I'd say the most memorable times I've been punk'd all involve a friend who became very, very wealthy during the dot-com explosion. He was crazy before he became instantly wealthy, but became certifiable after the money started pouring in. He would think nothing about spending thousands of dollars to charter a plane to Vegas for a few friends and then buy out a suite at some swanky hotel for the weekend... that's just the kind of guy he is... (the story continues in an extended entry).
Act the fool at the FridayQ.→ Click here to continue reading this entry...
Where's the most beautiful place you've ever been? What made it beautiful to you? Edinburgh, Scotland. The architecture and atmosphere of Edinburgh's Old Town is stunningly beautiful. Every time I visit, it takes my breath away. Other beautiful places: York, England; Bryce Canyon, Utah; Barking Sands, Kauai; Bali, Indonesia; La Jolla, California; Gamla Stan - Stockholm, Sweden; Phang Nga, Thailand; Neuschwanstein, Germany; Wicklow, Ireland.
Who's the most beautiful person you can think of? What makes them beautiful to you? Well, my obvious choice would be Elizabeth Hurley, who is one of the most physically beautiful creatures on earth. But beauty can transcend the physical, which is why I find people like the Dali Lama to be beautiful as well. Other beautiful people I've grabbed from my pictures folder: Jessica Alba, Halle Berry, Katie Holmes, Kelly Hu, Salma Hayek, and Angelina Jolie.
What's the most beautiful object you've ever looked at? What makes it beautiful? Hands down "The Pieta," Michelangelo's statue masterpiece... it defines beauty in art to me, and is so powerful that just standing before it is a religious experience. Other beautiful things: my motorcycle, Van Gogh's Starry Night, Petronas Towers, Diego Rivera's The Flower Carrier, my PowerBook Titanium G4, and one of Michelangelo's many, many other master-works, the Sistine Chapel.
FQ LIST: Tell us ten more beautiful things! When you think of "beauty," what one thing comes to mind for the following words:
Beauty is everywhere at the FridayQ.
What are some items of yours that are broken or needing repair right now? My alarm clock, the gas tank on my motorcycle, and my old G4 PowerMac Graphite Tower.
When something breaks, do you tend to live with it broke, repair it yourself, have a professional fix it, or throw it out? I don't care what it is, I almost always try to fix it myself. This can be a real problem, because if I can't end up fixing it I usually end up having to throw it away because I've voided the warranty. Case in point: my old G4 PowerMac Graphite Tower (which I am still hoping to fix one day).
Is there a childhood toy, family heirloom, or some other special item which was broken that you'd very much like to have un-broken? My dad gave me a beautiful set of old drafting tools that are very important to me. I still have the tools, but the case they were in was broken when I moved house. There are few things that I can think of that I would rather have unbroken than that.
FQ DESTROYER: What is something you would like to break intentionally, assuming you could get away with it?After the lying liars at TiVo decided not to make TiVoToGo for the Mac like they promised... I think I should like to bust my TiVo box over their president's head.
Nothing is breakable at the FridayQ.
Any pets as a kid? I had a beautiful black cat named "Midnight." As far as pets go, he was pretty cool.
Any pets now? Unfortunately, no. My travel schedule is such that I wouldn't be able to properly care for a pet if I were to have one (which would be a German Shepherd dog). Of course, there's always Oscar... he's kind of a pet.
Name your favorite famous pet from television or movies. "Brian" from "The Family Guy." Not only is he a dog that can speak and walk on two legs, but he is also a smartass that drinks martinis. What more could you want in a pet?
FQ BEST FRIEND: If money and legality were not a barrier, what exotic animal would you like as a pet? A voracious Tiger that eats people on command.
No leash is required at the FridayQ.
Your favorite sweet food? When did you last have it? My grandmother's apple pie, and I had it about three weeks ago.
Your favorite salty food? When did you last have it? French fries, which I had two days ago.
Your favorite sour food? When did you last have it? Green apples, which I had last summer.
FQ EDIBLE: What's the best thing you've ever tasted? The most horrible thing you've ever tasted? The best thing would have to be Pasta Salvi from Salvi's Bistro in Columbus Ohio... I still fantasize about it, and would probably weigh 700 pounds if I lived anywhere in the vicinity of Columbus. The worst would have to be natto (which is also the strangest), a Japanese delicacy that is nothing less than torture to the uninitiated.
Everything is tasty at the FridayQ.
What's an ideal day for you when it's sunny and blue skies? Riding my motorcycle from dawn until dusk. Perhaps over Highway 2 to North Bend, then back again. Having a late lunch, then heading out to the Columbia Basin flats for the afternoon.
What's an ideal day for you when it's overcast and rainy? Riding my motorcycle from dawn until dusk. I don't mind the rain at all when I ride, though I would probably head South in that kind of weather.
What's an ideal day for you when it's cold and snowy? Riding my motorcy... uhhhh... gee. There are no really snow sports I enjoy, so I guess reading a nice book by the fire with a cup of hot chocolate would be nice..
FQ FORECAST: What's the weather forecast for your area this coming weekend? What will you be doing out there in it? It's supposed to be only slightly cloudy with temperatures around 70° F. Perfect riding weather... absolutely perfect riding weather. So I'd imagine that I will be going for a few rides on my motorcycle in-between packing up all these prizes and T-shirts that have to be sent out.
I can tell you what I won't be doing... going to the annual "Apple Blossom Festival" in nearby Wenatchee. The insanity of it all was great when I was a drunken college student, but now it's just a horrendous ordeal that I usually avoid by leaving the country.
What music puts you in the mood for romance? Hmmm... right now I think that might be some of the slower, grungier Depeche Mode tracks off of their Ultra and Songs of Faith and Devotion albums. And you can never go wrong with Barry White.
Where is the perfect place for romancing someone? Paris would be the obvious choice... especially for an American who hasn't been there before. Maui is another obvious choice. New Orleans and San Francisco are very romantic cities as well.
What kind of foods get you feeling romantic? Jägermeister and Maraschino cherries.
FQ LOVER: How would somebody go about winning your heart? Don't try to change me. Don't lie to me. Don't make me be the one to always decide what to do. Don't smoke. Don't expect me to read your mind. Don't smother me. Don't buy me stuffed animals. Don't obsess over my every move. Don't demand to know what I've been doing every moment of every day. Don't ask me to like your friends that don't like me. Don't ask me to forgive you for making out with your ex-boyfriend because "nothing happened." Don't get upset when I don't feel like going shopping. Don't be cruel. Don't play mind-games. Don't think you can't talk to me about it. Don't get mad at me for something without letting me know why. Don't go to bed angry. Don't think I don't care. Or, if all else fails, iron my shirt and buy me a beer.
Fall in love with the FridayQ.
What's your native language? Do you speak any foreign languages? If so, how did you come to learn them? My native tongue is Americanized English. I studied Japanese for three years on my own, and got to the point where I could carry on simple conversations with no problem. Unfortunately, I've fallen out of practice, and have forgotten most of it. Other than that, I know basic phrases in German, Spanish, French and a few other assorted world languages... acquired in preparation for my travels.
What's your native country? Have you visited any foreign countries? If so, which ones? I am a native of The United States of America. I've visited an assortment of other countries, including Canada, Mexico, Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, The Netherlands, Iceland, Germany, Austria, Spain, France, Italy, Vatican City, Denmark, Sweden, Jamaica, and the Virgin Islands.
Are there any foreign foods, books, movies, or other items that you are particularly fond of? Name some of your favorites. I love good Indian and Italian food (particularly pasta). I am really into French and Italian films right now, and have always been a huge fan of Japanese animation and manga (comics). I like English snacks and sweets.
FQ NATIVE: If you had to trade your nationality for that of any foreign country, which would you choose and why? That's a tough one. Maybe Swiss so that my neutrality would allow me to visit places that I would otherwise be unwelcome as an American?
It's a foreign affair at the FridayQ.
Which famous person do you think sold out the most to endorse a product? What's the product? Ah, there are so many. I especially love these mega-million stars who consider themselves too good to do commercials here in the USA, but are more than happy to do Asian commercials for major bank (Ben Affleck's stuff is particularly bad). But, in the end, I'd have to say it's a tie between 1996 Presidential nominee Bob Dole for Viagra and former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka for Levitra. Yeah, yeah, I understand that erectile dysfunction is a problem for people, and having famous personalities endorse the drugs for it help to break down the stigma surrounding the need for such things... but I think it's the definition of "sell-out" to go on television and talk about problems with your penis. Well, unless you are June Allyson talking about Depends adult diapers, but that's another story altogether.
Which famous person do you think has the best celebrity endorsement for a product? What's the product? I am a huge fan of James Earl Jones, and think his commercials for Verizon DSL are great. But, when I really think about it... getting hottie Jessica Alba to pimp L'Oreal cosmetics was utter genius. What woman doesn't want to look that hot? She is the epitome of "fresh-faced beauty" and doesn't wear cosmetics... cosmetics wear HER...
Which song do you think has best been used to endorse a product? What's the product? No doubt it would have to be Pictures of You by The Cure, which was used brilliantly in HP's campaign for digital photography. I used to love The Cure, then kind of forgot about them until I heard that achingly beautiful song coming from my television and was haunted for days. It completely resurrected my love for the band.
FQ SPOKESMAN: Pair a famous person with a product endorsement that you think would be the perfect match! Angelina Jolie for just about anything. If Microsoft hired Angelina Jolie to pimp WindowsXP, I'd give serious consideration to chucking my Mac and downgrading to a crappy PC. If Jimmy Dean were to hire Angelina Jolie to pimp sausages, I'd be tempted to quit being a vegetarian after 20 years and start eating it. The woman is irresistible. If Apple were smart, they would give her a few million to pimp Macs and iPods in television commercials. She is the perfect spokeswoman for just about any product.
Speak up at the FridayQ.
A news story from your past that had a big influence on your life is... It would be easy to answer with the World Trade Center terrorist attacks, because it's so hard to overlook something that recent with such far-reaching effects... but I think I'll have to go with the Space Shuttle Challenger explosion. I was in college, and skipped my morning classes specifically so I could stay home and watch the launch. When it happened, it was shocking in a way that I wasn't prepared to deal with. Now-a-days, of course, we're conditioned to accept shock and horror on a daily basis, so I think it will be difficult to top that one. Though, now that I think about it, the death of Princess Diana was also pretty shocking. I had learned of her car crash in Paris just as I was leaving for a trip to Orlando. Nobody really knew at that point if she was alive or not. When I made it to Florida, I learned that Diana had died, but it didn't really sink in until I was at Disney's United Kingdom Pavilion at Epcot the next day. Since the attraction is literally built and staffed to be a piece of the United Kingdom, it was almost like being there. The British workers were devastated. There were flowers everywhere. Pictures of Lady Di were displayed in all the shops. Nobody spoke. It was a powerful moment I won't soon forget.
A news story that you wish would go away so you never have to hear about it again is... Oh gee, where do I start? Probably with the Michael Jackson trial. I wish they'd just send the freak off to prison and be done with it. I'd also love for the war to end so I wouldn't have to hear about any new deaths in Iraq. It would also be sweet if Britney Spears would drop off the face of the earth... I accidentally caught her "reality show" after the MTV Movie Awards and could not believe what a white-trash skank she's become. Oh, and she can take Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, and all those other sleazy ho-bag role-models for young girls with her.
A news story that you feel deserves much more attention than it has been getting lately is... When Weapons of Mass Destruction were not found in Iraq, we were told it didn't matter because Saddam Hussein was evil and should be gotten rid of anyway. Meanwhile, total GENOCIDE is taking place in Africa by people so evil that they make Hussein look like a humanitarian, and nobody says shit. I suppose if they ever strike oil in Darfur, then people will start to care. Global warming is another pitifully overlooked topic that our government continues to downplay as if it isn't the threat to everybody on the planet that it really is. I'm also upset that the "One Campaign" here in the USA to end world poverty is almost unheard of, which is truly sad. Too many newsworthy stories lost beneath the shuffle of who's sleeping with who in Hollywood. The media tells us what we should care about, and all too often it's stupid crap that doesn't matter. It's appalling. Thankfully the bloggers of the world are picking up the slack.
FQ REPORTER: Look into the future and create a headline for an interesting news story that hasn't happened yet... BELOVED WORLD DICTATOR FOR LIFE DAVE AND HIS FIRST LADY ELIZABETH HURLEY HOLD INTERGALACTIC PEACE CONFERENCE AT THEIR MARTIAN RETREAT. COOKIES AND PUNCH TO BE SERVED.
Be the headlines at the FridayQ.
Something you like to do or say that's considered to be bad. Riding a motorcycle is bad for your health... with all these SUV-driving distracted soccer moms, it can be fatal.
Something you like to watch or listen to that's considered to be bad. Television itself is considered to be bad by many people, but I just can't help myself. Also, everybody considers 80's synth-pop to be bad, and I listen to a lot of that.
Something you like to eat or drink that's considered to be bad. I'm guessing that would be Jones Blue Bubble Gum Soda. It doesn't seem natural to be consuming something that's this blue.
FQ ASSOCIATION: Tell us something "bad" you associate with the following ten words: movie: Spanglish, song: Country-Western, television: Reality Shows, place: Koontz, book: Atkins, taste: Cauliflower or Broccoli, smell: Vomit, sound: Mobile Phone Ringtones, touch: Slime, and sight: Wrecked Motorcycle.
Be a bad monkey at the FridayQ.
Does your home town host any annual gatherings, festivals, or events? This is a very small city, but that doesn't stop us from hosting the annual "Founder's Day Parade" (happening this weekend, coincidentally enough) and "Apple Days" (first weekend in October). It's kind of nice, I suppose, but anything we do pales in comparison to the neighboring city of Leavenworth (which I talk about here).
What is the "claim to fame" of your home town... what is it famous for? The "Early American City" of Cashmere, Washington has three things that are somewhat noteworthy...
What's something about your home town that is NOT so great? You are constantly having to run to the nearby city of Wenatchee (20 minutes away) for just about everything and anything. We have a grocery store, a few mini marts, a couple restaurants, and assorted shops... but most everything you end up having to drive to Wenatchee for eventually (that's where the movie theaters are as well).
FQ ARCHITECT: Invent a new attraction to bring even more fame and fortune to your home town. I'd think a shrine to me would be a massive hit! People could come from around the world to pay their respects to Dave, learn his life story, and have big fun... it could be like Neverland Ranch, but without the inappropriate touching... I think I'll call it "DaveLand" - "The Daviest Place on Earth!"
Somewhere you'll probably never go, but would like to. Outer space... like the moon or something. To be more realistic, I'd probably have to say Elizabeth Hurley's bedroom. Okay, that's probably less realistic, but you know...
Something you'll probably never do, but would like to. Visit every Hard Rock Cafe in the world. It was a goal for the longest time but, after I hit visit #100, it was not such a big goal anymore. It's also getting increasingly unrealistic, because properties open and close before I can get to them.
Someone you'll probably never meet, but would like to. Well, there are several people I'd like to meet solely for the purpose of bitch-slapping them back to the stone-age (Judge Judy and Jared the Subway moron is at the top of the list). I'd also like to meet a bunch of bloggers that I read. But, truth to tell, it would be either Elizabeth Hurley or Betty White. If forced to choose, it would be Elizabeth Hurley.
REALITY CHECK: What would have to happen in order for you to actually accomplish those three things? Money. Lots and lots of money. Not that I'm saying Elizabeth Hurley would suddenly let me meet her or visit her bedroom if I had a billion dollars, but I could probably bribe people that allow these disturbing and stalker-ish behavior.
Your thoughts on TV reaity shows... love them or loathe them? Pretty much loathe them, as they take up space that could have been used by excellent, thought-provoking shows that end up cancelled.
Your favorite TV reality show (or the one you are able to tolerate the most). The only show I will not miss is the original reality show: Survivor. I used to download torrents of the UK version of Big Brother, but it's getting more and more difficult to find torrent feeds. I don't watch any others now that Paris Hilton isn't doing The Simple Life, and American Chopper is stuck in a rut.
Your least favorite TV reality show (or the one you find the stranegst/stupidest). There are too many. I loathe American Idol with a passion, so that's probably the most obvious to me. But now David E. Kelley (respectable creator of shows like Ally McBeal and Boston Legal) is sullying himself with a mockery of the law in his upcoming reality courtroom show The Law Firm. I expect that will sink reality TV to even new depths of suckage (though he would have to go a long way to out-skank that bitch Judge Judy).
FQ TV: Invent your own TV reality show. Would you appear on it? I'd like a show that would give me a million dollars and follow me around as I attempt to spend it all in a single week. We could call it Million Dollar Dave, and I would absolutely appear in it.
You too can get real at the FridayQ.
What's the most depressing song you've heard and movie you've watched? Depressing song would have to be something country-western, since I find all of it depressing. But since I don't know the names of any country songs, I guess I'll say "It Couldn't Happen Here" by the Pet Shop Boys. It's not so much the lyrics, as the song's tempo. Easily the most depressing movie ever was Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace because we waited nearly TWO DECADES for that steaming pile of crap. The minute Jar Jar Binks appeared on the screen, I wanted to shoot myself. Well, myself or George Lucas. But mostly George Lucas.
What's the most depressing place you've been? Hollywood, California. Not so much for the city or the people, but because I had a dream project of mine utterly crushed there by a whole team of lying bastards that will roast in hell for all eternity (assuming there is justice in this world... or the next). Every time I go back to L.A., the memory of it consumes me totally, and I'm depressed for days. The smog and traffic doesn't help either. Hmmm... I guess it is the city and the people after all.
What's the most depressing event in current news to you? Gee. How do you choose just one? The London bombings are, of course, depressing me because I love the city so much and have some good friends there. Continuing break-downs in the Middle East along with the ever-growing death-toll in Iraq is seriously depressing. Those f#@%ers at Halliburton getting a new government contract, despite having ripped-off the American people for millions, is mind-numbingly depressing. Then there's Dafur, FOX News, Haiti, lawyers, and the list goes on and on. But what I find most depressing of all is that the top story around the world is the release of a new Harry Potter book. WTF?!?
FQ REMEDY: List five things you do to make yourself feel better when depression strikes.
I'd like to say that watching DVDs or recordings of my favorite television shows makes me feel better... but since most of them are cancelled, I just get more depressed.
From the past, what's something that's ended which you wish hadn't? The show Cupid, starring Jeremy Piven and Paula Marshall. The best television program ever to air. May the executive at ABC who was responsible for this travesty burn forever in the fiery pits of hell. Oh, and by the way... Jeremy Piven had BETTER win the Emmy for his role on HBO's Entourage. Classic.
From today, what's something that's gone on too long and you wish it would end now? The obvious answer is the Bush regime, because I sure wouldn't be crying if that evaporated tomorrow. But ultimately, I think it's a tie between Microsoft Windows (Vista?!?) or reality television shows... both of which suck ass.
For tomorrow, what's something you wish would never end at all? Coke with Lime. I stopped drinking soda for years, but now that I'm addicted to Coke with Lime, I think that I would die if the Coke people stopped making it.
FQ FINALE: Visit the FridayQ Archives, and revisit an old favorite with new answers, or pick a favorite you missed to answer new. My favorite of all FridayQ's was the fourth one from June 25th, 2004. They were all downhill from there! (Link to my original answers)...
Lie about where you spent your last vacation. Scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef with James Cameron as he did research for his next film: Aquaman.
Tell an untruth about your last romantic encounter. Elizabeth Hurley and I made passionate monkey-love in a Tuscan Villa after she ironed my shirts.
Fib about the last gift you received. Dale Chihuly sent me a piece from his latest glassworks collection. It's a beautiful fluted "seaform" piece in blues and greens.
FQ DARE: This time tell the truth on all the above! My last vacation was two days ago, when I spent 3 hours in HersheyPark. My last romantic encounter was so long ago I don't even remember. The last gift I received was chocolate-covered peanut brittle.
Thanks to everybody who played along with the FridayQ... it was fun while it lasted!
When I decided to shut down the FridayQ, I really didn't think twice about it. I was looking to cut back on my extraneous activities, and felt it was the logical choice since memes have been kind of dying off anyway. To be honest, I didn't think anybody would care, because so few people were participating at the end.
The problem is that the FridayQ was always written weeks in advance. So the smarter thing to do would have been to hold off until after I had run out of material, THEN close it down. Oh well. What's done is done.
Today's FridayQ was going to be about things you enjoy and you don't know why. I concocted it after channel-surfing one day and realizing that, despite the fact that I LOATHE country music, I am a huge fan of Shania Twain. Honestly... I can't stand whiny, twangy country-western. I very nearly gouged my ears out during the height of Garth Brook's popularity. Billy Ray Cyrus singing "Achy Breaky Heart" was enough to send me into epileptic fits. Yet I love me the Shania Twain...
Sure she's brutally hot, but that's only half the package. She's remarkably talented as well. And, for reasons I can't guess, I am totally into her music. And not just her more pop-oriented stuff either... all of it, including the country classics.
I try not to worry about it, but am deathly afraid that it will spread and I'm going to end up buying the latest Willie Nelson or Alan Jackson CD. After that, it's a frightfully short jump to mainlining crap by Clay Aiken and Justin Guarini... at which point I would have to kill myself.
Life was so much simpler before American Idol came along.