I just read this in an article concerning the recent VA tech school shooting:
"Cho's writing was so disturbing, though, he was referred to the university's counseling service, said Carolyn Rude, chairwoman of the university's English department.
In screenplays Cho wrote for a class last fall, characters throw hammers and attack with chainsaws, said a student who attended Virginia Tech last fall. In another, Cho concocted a tale of students who fantasize about stalking and killing a teacher who sexually molested them.
"When we read Cho's plays, it was like something out of a nightmare," former classmate Ian MacFarlane, now an AOL employee, wrote in a blog posted on an AOL Web site. "The plays had really twisted, macabre violence that used weapons I wouldn't have even thought of." "
I'm not really going anywhere with this. I was just struck by thinking about the fact that you can walk into any movie rental place or theater and see stories of the same type, viciously and gruesomely carried out on the screen, and no one really seems disturbed by that. I mean, someone had to think of these stories. Someone had to write the screenplays. And lots of someones had to think it was good enough/would sell enough that they made movies out of it. And again, lots and lots of someones were entertained enough by these sick and twisted films that these movies have made millions upon millions of dollars.
I wonder if classmates ever talked about Eli Roth the same way they talked about Cho.
So I was randomly surfing blogs and found this: Where Memes Go To Die by Suburban Turmoil (who has several blogs, btw). She's hilariously funny, and I found her by visiting Kristin's blog for the thousandth time, and actually checking out her "shopping list".
Having been tagged by this particular paragraph - "5. Oh and you're tagged too. Yes you. Especially if you're a lurker. Especially if you hate memes. Tagged!!!!! You've been tagged!!!!!!! :) :) :) :) :)" - I decided I might as well do it. ^_^
Four things I've done that were a complete waste of time.
1. Played World of Warcraft. For hours. When I should have been a.) going to the gym, b.) cleaning my house, c.) paying bills, d.) being social with my friends, e.) sleeping....... as you might suspect, the list goes on and on. ^_^
2. Played playstation 2, X-Box, Gamecube, Sega Genesis, and Playstation Portable games. For hours. When I should have been.... well, see above.
3. Gone to work. Well, I guess that's not technically a waste of time since it payed the bills, but sometimes it sure feels like it.
4. One total and complete waste of time occurs to me right about now. I locked myself out of my house with a brand new kitten inside. I called the good ole reliable Ex Boyfriend who still had an extra key (the only extra key) to beg him to bring it to the house, but oh no, he was going to see a movie and couldn't be bothered to come to my rescue. Best Friend B kindly consents to take me all the way to Ex Boyfriend's house. We get there only to realize that Ex Boyfriend put the wrong key out for me. Went all the way back (still keyless; remember, Ex Boyfriend is at a movie), and Ex had to bring it out to me anyway. Yep. Hours of wasted time. Needless to say, there are now at least three extra keys floating around out there.
Four things I'd like to do with every meme ever written.
1. Print them out and put them in some kind of steel lock box, then bury it with some crucifixes, the Koran, and maybe a Buddah or two so archaeologists from the far future can one day find them and try to decipher their hidden religious meanings.
2. Fill them out. Seriously, I have this strange compulsion to do every meme that someone asks me to do. Actually, that probably could have been put in the 6 Weird Things About Me meme....
3. Post them all on Myspace to piss people off. ^_^
4. Print them all out and put them in a book that would be passed down to all future generations with the gravity and weight normally associated with the bible. Yep, that would be awesome. ^_^
Four embarrassing physical traits I don't like people to know about.
1. When I'm in the water along with my fingers pruning up I get large areas on my palms that look like lizard skin. It's weird.
2. The fact that I'm like twelve thousand sizes bigger than I used to be. 'Nuff said.
4. Okay, I'm cheating, but amazingly enough I can't think of anything else. I'm fairly comfortable inside my skin.
Four reasons I dislike memes
1. They're generally a waste of time. There's plenty of things I should be doing right now, like a.) going to the gym, b.) cleaning my house..... etc.
2. That compulsion I have to fill them out disturbs me. Yet I can't escape it.
3. I dislike them because millions of emo teenagers love them so very much. And I try to dislike everything that millions of emo teenagers love.
4. Because I do. So there.
Four celebrities I'd like to prank call.
1. Britany Spears (not even sure if I spelled her name right). "Hey. Once I had a nightmare about you. Thanks a lot."
2. Clive Owen. "OMG I'm talking to Clive Owen! Can I be your love slave??"
3. Elijah Wood. "Frodo, you failed! Bush has the Ring!"
4. Dane Cook. "I'm a vomit breathing dragon! LOL!"
Four reasons why there are maybe one or two people who (gasp!) don't like me..
1. I'm stubborn. To a fault. I've had lots of friends complain about it.
2. I'm very shy, which leads people to think I'm rude, anti-social, have a superiority complex, etc. I'm fantastic one or two on one with people I don't know, but put me in a group of strangers and I retreat to my own little world. I'm not an introvert. No, really!
3. If you get into a car with me and don't like my music, you will quickly hate me. I listen to metal. Loudly.
4. I'm very honest, occasionally brutally so. You'd be surprised at how quickly that can earn you enmity.
Four people I'm tagging who would almost certainly never, ever do a meme
See? None of these people will ever do a meme! ^_^
I think Pandora, a fantastic customizable internet radio station, is absolutely brilliant. All you have to do is type in an artist's name or song title, and Pandora will find it, then start playing bands that are similar to the band you chose. By clicking a thumbs up or thumbs down buttons you tell Pandora whether or not you like the music it's chosen for you, and by doing so, further customizes your internet radio experience. If you click the "why did you play this song" button, Pandora will bring up a little text box explaining the musical similarities between the band you started out and the song it's playing for you. For example: "Based on what you've told us so far, we're playing this track because it features synth rock arranging, electronica influences, new age influences, a subtle use of vocal counterpoint, and a subtle use of vocal harmony." This service is also free for users, paying for itself by allowing third parties to post advertisements (no pop up ads) on the website.
Pretty cool, huh?
Well, enjoy it while it lasts, because the Copyright Royalty Board in Washington, DC has decided to almost triple royalty fees for internet radio stations, which greatly exceeds the revenue of most internet radio stations. Oh, and on top of that, since the new royalty rates are retroactive to January 1, 2006 so they will cause immediate bankruptcies if they become effective for even one day.
Here are some myths and facts provided by SaveNetRadio.org:
MYTH: Broadcast radio, satellite radio and Internet Radio pay the same amount of royalties to creators of music, or pay proportionate relative to the size of their businesses.
FACT: The smallest medium – Internet radio – pays the most royalties; and under the new CRB royalty scheme the smallest webcasters will pay the highest relative royalties in amounts shockingly disproportionate to their revenue. Broadcast radio, an industry with $20 billion in annual revenue, is exempt and pays no performance royalties to record companies or recording artists. Satellite radio, which has approximately $2 billion in annual revenue pays between 3 and 7% of revenue in sound recording performance royalties. The six largest Internet-only radio services anticipate combined revenue of only $37.5 million in 2006, but will pay a whopping 47% (or $17.6 million) in sound recording performance royalties under the new CRB ruling. In 2008 combined revenues will total only $73.6 million, but royalties will be 58% or $42.4 million.
Small Internet radio services are essentially bankrupted by the CRB ruling, with most anticipating royalty obligations equaling or exceeding total revenue.
MYTH: Internet Radio isn’t really that big anyway. Most people still listen to traditional FM radio.
FACT: At some point every day more than 7 million Americans are listening to Internet radio. Studies by Arbitron and Bridge Ratings conclude that between 50 and 70 million Americans listen to Internet radio every month, and about 20 percent of 18-34 year olds listen to Internet radio every week.
MYTH: If Internet Radio is so big the higher royalty rates should be affordable.
FACT: Internet radio is a relatively new industry with advertising models still developing. Some services rely on banner ads; others are selling traditional audio ads; and still others rely on sponsorships. The vast majority of Webcasters will not be able to generate enough advertising revenue to pay their new, higher royalty fees.
MYTH: The webcasters’ previous royalty rate was too low and needed to be increased to ensure that artists and record companies are paid fairly.
FACT: Bankrupting the Internet radio industry will not benefit artists or record companies, as total industry royalties will diminish. Moreover, the demise of Internet radio will be particularly harmful to independent artists and record labels whose music is rarely played on broadcast radio. The American Association of Independent Music reports that less than 10% of terrestrial radio performances are independent music but more than 37% of non-terrestrial radio is independent music. This benefits artists, labels and music fans.
When Congress provided webcasters a guaranteed “statutory license” to perform sound recordings, Congress intended that Internet radio would flourish as a competitive medium offering diverse programming and paying a royalty. Tripling webcasters royalties undermines all these goals.
MYTH: Big webcasters can afford these royalties and they will each offer hundreds or thousands of channels, so what’s the big deal?
FACT: The CRB royalty is so high that even the biggest Internet-only radio services – including Yahoo, AOL, MTV and RealNetworks – will pay a combined 50+ percent of their revenue for only this single royalty. The only way to make a profitable, scalable business will be to attract the largest audience and advertisers while reducing overhead and innovation. The result will be “mass appeal” Internet radio programming that will look much more like today’s broadcast revenue, rather than the diverse programming that exemplifies today’s Internet radio.
MYTH: The rate is only increasing from 7/100 of a penny per song streamed to 19/100 of a penny per song streamed over a 5-year period.
FACT: Nearly tripling the per-song royalty rate is only the first insult.
No Revenue-based Royalty Option. Prior to this decision all small webcasters and some large webcasters had the choice of paying royalties based on a percentage of their revenue that typically equaled 10-12%. But the CRB decision did not offer a revenue-based royalty option for any webcasters.
Retroactive Impact. The CRB decision is effective as of January 2006, so if it actually becomes effective for only one day its impact will be immediate as the past due royalties alone will be enough to bankrupt virtually all small and mid-sized webcasters.
Per Station Minimum. The CRB piled on even more, by imposing a $500 per channel minimum royalty that for many services will far exceed the annual royalties that would otherwise be due even after the CRB decision. One advantage of Internet radio is that it is not limited by spectrum capacity or bandwidth capacity, which enables several services literally to offer 10,000 or 100,000 stations
So does any of that seem right, logical, or fair?
I have one final thing to say about the issue. Quite a bit of my fairly extensive CD collection was purchased after hearing a band on an internet radio station. Internet radio provides a wonderful way to experience new and diverse music, especially when learning about music or new artists in smaller, less popular genres can be difficult. I support the fact that internet radio stations need to pay royalties - I do not support increasing these royalties to exhorbitant amounts, such as what has been proposed. Shutting down internet radio, intentionally or not, will be a crime.
So how about we stop it?
Visit SaveNetRadio.org and put in your two cents about raising internet radio royalties. And while you're at it, check out Pandora.com. You'll enjoy it. ^_^
* out of ****
Well.... the first thing I have to say about this one was that I was severely disappointed. Severely. Disappointed. I mean, I figured a movie featuring a conflict between Vikings and native americans starring Karl Urban (notably gorgeous actor of Lord of the Rings and Chronicles of Riddick fame) would be terrible, but fantastically entertaining in the way that bad action movies are. Wow, was I wrong. >_<
Premise: Peaceful, secluded, happy indians are set upon by gigantic, brutish vikings who plunder, pillage, rape, and massacre their way through an indian village. Lo and behold, they leave one of their own behind because the boy refused to kill an indian girl! How noble! Taken in by the tribe and raised as one of their own, when the "dragon men" return they have a nasty surprise waiting for them. Throw in the terminally stupid, absolutely useless love interest (played by actress Moon Bloodgood O_o) and you have a plot with the makeup of a C movie. Or a D movie, for that matter.
It could have been fun. Really, it could have. But it wasn't. Right from the beginning credits, the movie feels choppy, like someone got trigger happy in the editing room, then tried to paste the scenes back together. The acting is terrible, and when I say terrible, I mean terrible. The script just leaves you laughing, and not in a good way. And to make things ten thousand times worse, the movie seems to actually take itself seriously. O_O I mean.... WHY?
So Bob and I were laughing through the whole thing, snickering behind our hands as we tried to keep the noise level down to a minimum while watching comically dramatic facial expressions from Karl Urban, ridiculously stupid movies from the indian braves, serious intonations from the indian chief "Pathfinder", and the cringeworthy foolishness of Love Interest, whose name wasn't even worth remembering, and of course the bad acting in general.
All that being said, the only reason I didn't completely bomb this movie was that there were a couple fairly decent action scenes, although even those were peppered with unnecessary slow motion moments.
I have one thing left to share with you. The avalanches at the end. HYSTERICAL!
World of Warcraft is probably the greatest MMORPG (for the poor, hapless souls out there who don't know what MMORPG stands for, its 'Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game'... click for further explanation) made thus far. I played EverQuest 2 for a while, and it just didn't do it for me. Sure, it was fun for a while, but it doesn't hold a candle to WoW.
Anyway, playing with my friend P has recently educated me to the art of manipulating men to give you free items, help with quests, and basically any other such aid as you could possibly need throughout the course of the game. Interestingly enough, P (a guy) has become very adept at this art by playing female characters.
Here are some tips:
1.) If you are playing a female character, every guy playing a male character will automatically assume that you are a girl. This is hilarious in P's case, who of course is confident enough in his sexuality to not only play a female character, but act like an especially ditzy chick. Unfortunately, he is starting to act this way even when we are adventuring by ourselves. Unpleasant side effect.
2.) When using the chat window, interperse *giggle* throughout many of your sentences. This seems very useful in convincing guys that you are female. I have never seen a guy use *giggle*. Ever. Except P.
3.) When adventuring with a guy, pet names are a plus. For example (we're standing outside a building filled with high level elites being helped by a high level rogue).
Guy: "Don't come in here yet, I'm clearing the way."
Me: "Sweetie, a team of horses couldn't drag me in there."
4.) Emotes. /kiss (A blows a kiss to B). /hug (A hugs B). /comfort (A needs to be comforted). /scared (A is scared!). You get the idea. Guy will usually come back with /bow (B bows before A). /comfort (B comforts A). Etc.
5.) Remove all armor and clothing so your character is standing in her underwear, then say in your Guild chat. "Anyone up for a nude run through the Wetlands? *giggle*"
As I said, I am still a neophyte, but I am learning from P, the master. I will continue to relay tips as I learn them. So far the above techniques have earned me assistance without even having to ask on difficult quests, a free sword that was twice as good as my previous weapon), free bags (more inventory space), escorts through dangerous areas, free healing potions, etc. ^_^
**** out of ****
The 1980s home video market threatened to render the grindhouse obsolete. By the end of that decade, grindhouse theaters had vanished from Los Angeles's Broadway and Hollywood Boulevard, New York City's Times Square and San Francisco's Market Street. By the mid-1990s, they had completely disappeared from the United States."
One more fantastic thing I will note about this incredible production were the absolutely hilarious fake previews before each of the feature presentations. I'll leave you to discover those on your own. ^_^
The 6 Weird Things About Me Meme
(tagged by Kristin, thanks a lot. ^_^)
1.) I am amazingly, fantastically, paranoid. Too many slasher movies, I think. For example, whenever I go to the bathroom, no matter whose house I am at, if the shower curtain is closed, I will move it and glance in to make sure no one is lurking in there. Same thing with my car. Even though I keep all four doors locked, I will still look into my backseat before getting in to make sure that serial killer with a garrote or butcher knife is somewhere else. Occasionally before I go to bed I will wander through my house looking in closets and behind doors to make sure I'm really alone. And, uh.... yeah.... you get the picture. ^_^
2.) I have the wonderful ability to sit and play the computer for 4 - 5+ hours at a time without getting the slightest twinge of headache or other ailment. However, this is only at home. When I am at work, I experience problems with my back, my wrist, my legs, and of course I get headaches from time to time after only a couple of hours. ^_^ Granted, World of Warcraft is way more exciting than real estate, but still.
3.) I'm pretty neurotic about how the silverware in my drawer is arranged. If someone else does my dishes for me and puts the silverware away in the wrong spots in the drawer, I get very cranky. I don't always fix it right away, but every time I open the drawer to get out a spoon or fork I immediately start feeling hostile. ^_^ The same thing goes for how my books are arranged on my bookshelf. Right now I'm rearranging some things in my living room so about 80% of my books are jumbled together on the floor, but that doesn't bother me, as long as they're not on my bookcase out of order! And of course the "order" that I've chosen for the books is discernable only to me.
4.) I eat steak with ketchup and chicken with mayonaise. Enough said.
5.) I hate cleaning my kitchen. In fact, I loathe it. This in itself isn't weird, I mean lots of people despise cleaning their kitchen, but I hate it TEN THOUSAND TIMES more than I hate cleaning my bathroom. And I don't know anyone who likes cleaning their bathroom more than their kitchen. Except me, of course.
6.) I have conversations with my cat. This is why I need a roommate.
Okay, all done! Of course, there are way more than 6 weird things about me, but fortunately this is the "6 weird things" meme, not the "25 weird things" meme, or some other such nonsense.
Well, I don't have anyone to tag, except for mom, and I think she was already tagged. ^_^