Tuesday, May 31, 2011
So this weekend I watched "Gettysburg" on the History Channel, and I emerge from the experience no wiser.
Battle is really, really complicated and gross. You'd think the History Channel would tone down the gore, but I couldn't really concentrate on General Sickles screwing everything up because I was too freaked out by watching a computer generated version of a cannon ball ripping off his leg.
But other than the History Channel's mastery of actors coughing up blood, these battles baffle me. I felt the same way watching the (embarrassingly fabulous) move, "The Patriot." Battles just seem like groups of men marching towards each other shooting into the opposite crowd.
It's like deadly dodgeball. But it's all smokey and scary, and you're supposed to follow your side's flag. But the guy holding the flag is "a magnet" for bullets, so the flag keeps getting dropped. And somewhere, some General is looking at a map trying to figure out where to go next.
I understand the basic concept of taking over each city until the other side gives up. But especially in the Revolutionary War, where you shoot your guns and then it's the other side's turn while you just stand there and take it? What's that about? If you survive that first round of fire, you take another step forward and shoot. And you keep doing this until one side is like, "Alright! Enough!"
How can this possibly work? How can you figure out where you're even going? How do you communicate with anyone? And how do you not run for the bushes the second the first GERM-COVERED BULLET is shot?
I would be a horrible solider...
Monday, May 30, 2011
Friday, May 27, 2011
One of the REPUBLICANS recently told me that someone asked him if we were drag queens. I was horrified and actually announced, "No! We are real ladies!" But in seeing today's video of the GLAAD Media Awards Red Carpet, I can see how someone might wonder.
We'll try and look more like chicks. In the meantime, watch this!
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Monday, May 23, 2011
Up now! On SFGate...
What? You haven't heard about the Unabomber Auction? Allow me to fill you in:
"Sale of Theodore John Kaczynski aka “The Unabomber” items – Per a Court Order in the criminal case United States V. Theodore J. Kaczynski (96-cr-259-GEB, E D. Cal.; 06-10514, 9th Circuit), the government has been ordered to conduct a “well-publicized” internet sale of Kaczynski’s seized property to be sold to the general public in the effort to pay off a $15 million restitution order to the victims and their families. Unlike other sales, neither the U.S. Marshals Service nor GSA will receive any revenue from this sale."
First of all, I love that I live in a time where the government is selling a killer's crap on the internet for everyone to gawk at.
Second of all, INTERESTING! Right?
You have until June 2nd to shop, folks. A hoodie and sunglasses, presumably the ones he wore for his famous wanted poster police sketch are currently at $20,025. And the handwritten copy of the Unabomber manifesto is currently going for $17,525. So we're looking at more reasonable items. Bill's first choice is "Hatchet and Small Hand Held Knives."
When we first looked, these items were holding steady at $50. They're currently up to over $600. My first choice is the "Miscellaneous Clothing" lot, selling for $350. Check this shit out:
And then the US Marshall version of Andre Leon Talley includes this description:
"ONE LOT TO CONSIST OF NAVY BLUE JACKET, PANTS, GREEN HOODED JACKET, BLACK JACKET, PAIR OF BROWN/GREEN HIKING SHOES, GREEN JACKET, AND GLOVES. KACZYNSKI~S CLOTHING COLLECTION WAS SOMEWHAT LIMITED AND VERY FUNCTIONAL, CHOSEN TO PROTECT HIM FROM THE ELEMENTS OF THE MONTANA WILDERNESS. KACZYNSKI UTILIZED GLOVES FOR A VARIETY OF PURPOSES. HE USED GLOVES, SANDING AND CHEMICAL TREATMENTS TO REMOVE AND AVOID LEAVING FINGERPRINTS ON HIS BOMB COMPONENTS. HE ALSO WORE CLOTHES SO AS TO NOT LEAVE HIS FINGERPRINTS AT THE SCENE OF ACTS OF VANDALISM HE COMMITTED THROUGHOUT THE YEARS IN VARIOUS WILDERNESS LOCATIONS. 1531F811390059"
Again, I say INTERESTING!
If you need to waste another hour on the internet today, please check out the Unabomber Trunk Sale and let me know which items you find most fascinating. Also, I'd like to hear who else's crap you'd buy. I am interesting in anything belonging to Albert Fish, David Carpenter and the Zodiac hood...
Friday, May 20, 2011
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Up now, on SFGate...
Monday, May 16, 2011
Anyway, when Chris arrived 14 minutes late, (this never happens) I was 14 minutes into Hoarding: Buried Alive. So we needed to watch the remaining 46 minutes of it together. Chris, it's important to note, does not tolerate "feelings" or "personal problems" with any sort of "compassion." And he had never seen the TLC show Hoarding: Buried Alive.
"What is going on?"
"Well!" I turned to face him on the couch. "This is Kelain and Kevin. Kelain inherited this house from her mother. Also Kelain is an artist and she collects banana peels and hangs them from the ceiling fan.""Yeah, we're not watching this."
"Oh, but we are."
Kelain and her live in boyfriend Kevin live in absolute squalor in Dallas, Texas. Kevin has a dramatic mullet ponytail and loves to obediently cook for Kelain, who has a dramatic side ponytail. Only their kitchen, like every other room in their home, is covered with crap. So when Kelain requests filet mignon for breakfast, Kevin has no choice but to prepare it in the only accessible appliance: a toaster oven, which he does with great flair, including a berry sauce.
I guess the berries were a nod to the fact that it was 9am.
Anyway, Kelain makes her own jewelry and loses her shit anytime Kevin brings up this one fight they had years ago. She gets is such a "pissy mood" that she goes and hides in the bathroom, and then finally reemerges after a heart to heart with a stuffed penguin.
If this wasn't engrossing enough, I had the added theatrical component of Big Chris' reactions to everything, from Kevin's missing teeth to Kelain's homemade necklace which we deemed, "The Cowbell."
I attempted to explain to Chris, who kept screaming, "These people need to get their shit together!" that hoarding is a real addiction, asking for help is a huge step and most importantly, that we needed to watch until the end so we could see the before and after (much like those of you who read my rehab posts. I'm right there with you.)
Basically, Kelain had a Come To Jesus Moment when she realized that Kevin, who at this point I'd come to regard as a freeloader with low standards, might leave. So after an exhaustive process, she cleaned out the house enough so that Kevin could cook in the kitchen.
Now Kelain can have all of the 9am filet mignon she wants!
As we got up to go to dinner, Chris looked around my flat and announced, "Well compared to the ponytail people, this place looks pretty good."
And that, Big Chris, is why we watch Hoarders...
Friday, May 13, 2011
Also, I've got a post up on the SF Appeal today, in where I offer up a suggestion about who might be behind some anonymous videos roaming around the interwebs. Mayoral campaigns are definitely weird, but occasionally involve exciting mysteries. Thank GOD.
Finally, if you plan to attend Saturday's GLAAD Media Awards or Sunday's Bay to Breakers, please keep your eyes peeled for two chicks in wigs and a camera guy...
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
"If you thought my child died in a fire but I was convinced she was still alive, would you help me crash a Quinceanera to steal hair from a 6 year old for DNA testing?"
My phone immediately glowed with the deadpan response, "Yes." And then detailed all of the ways Melissa knows how to steal people's hair.
So that was nice. And this TV movie was amazing.
Basically, in this dramatized version of a true story, Delimar Vera was the 10-day old 3rd child of Pedro and Luz Vera of suburban Philadelphia. Pedro's cousin's skanky ex shows up one day and invites herself to the Vera's holiday party.
The holiday party is rocking, Pedro gets wasted and needs to go on a beer run. Also, he's kind of a dick about it. Luz brings her friends, including the skanky cousin's ex (Valerie) upstairs to check on the baby, and places a space heater next to the crib. (Pause for knowing look.)
Luz closes the bedroom window (Pause because Lifetime wants you to know: CLUE!) and they all go back to the party downstairs. Approximately 3 seconds later, the entire house is on fire, emanating from little Delimar's room. (Pause because we're all supposed to blame the space heater.)
Pedro arrives back from his beer run just in time to see the PFD gently carry out a tiny bundle and put it in an ambulance. Luz's "best friend" Tio is all, "OMG, Delimar is dead."
Pedro, who by the way would never hold Delimar, is basically like, "Let's move on."
But Luz is like, "This is bullshit. Delimar is alive. I can feel it."
Needless to say, Skanky Valerie has mysteriously departed.
Since their house burned down, Luz, Pedro and their two boys movie into Tio's basement where Luz keeps talking about, "when Delimar comes back."
Tio gets photos of the fateful party developed and lo and behold, there is a picture of the house on fire and Delimar's window is open! But Luz closed it! Someone must have snuck in and stolen Delimar. Tio pats Luz on the back and rolls her eyes and Pedro can't even handle it and moves out.
Oh, but first, Luz says that if Delimar is so dead she wants to see the body. So Pedro takes her down to the morgue, where they're like, "This isn't a body. It's a burned piece of mattress. Our bad."
This only fuels Luz's flames (see how I did that) that Delimar is still alive. Pedro bounces.
Pages fall off the calendar, six years pass, Luz and her boys are still in Tio's basement and Tio announces, "Come to this random Quinceara with me so I can fix you up with a guy in a bolo tie. You need to get out, you can bring the boys, it'll be good for you."
So Luz agrees and just as she's getting introduced to bolo tie, who should walk into the Quinceara but Skanky Valerie AND HER SIX YEAR OLD "DAUGHTER."
Even though the last time Luz saw her, Delimar was 10 days old, Luz loses her shit, convinced it's Delimar. Tio tries to calm her down but Luz follows the little girl upstairs (the Quinceara is held at a private residence) and starts chatting with her. All of a sudden, Luz says to the little girl, "Oh no, you have gum in your hair." And yanks out a chunk of this kid's hair.
Everyone goes back to the party where all hell breaks lose. Luz accuses Skanky Valierie of kidnapping Delimar and Skanky Valerie calls Luz, "loco" repeatedly.
Oh, and also, Skanky Valerie has pushed this child into acting. She keeps talking about auditions and commercials.
Tio drags Luz out of there and tells her to get a grip. Luz heads down to the police station, assuming she can just hand over her hair sample and get a free DNA test. Alas, no. Then she goes and finds Pedro AFTER SIX YEARS and (this is when I started screaming, "Luz, not yet!") and tries to tell him she saw Delimar at a Quinceara. Pedro is, needless to say, a jerk about the whole thing.
Down in the dumps, Luz is walking home when she runs into a rally for Congressman Angel Crus (over-acted by A. Martinez.) Never giving up, Luz stakes out Congressman Cruz's office and manages to get him to agree to listen to her story (he could see the determination in her eyes) while he walks to lunch.
Cue montage of Luz and Angel Cruz walking all over Philadelphia while she gestures wildly, obviously regaling him with Delimar's story. Finally, he gets to his lunch meeting and Luz asks, "Are you going to get me my DNA test?"
And Angel Cruz says, "You need probable cause and you have to obtain DNA legally."
So Luz sighs and says, "Do you at least believe me?"
And after a long, dramatic pause, Congressman Angel Cruz looks her in the eye and says, "Si."
So Angel Cruz gets back to the office and gets his pals in SVU to look into Skanky Valerie.
Guess who served a year in prison for arson? Skanky Valerie!
This apparently constitutes probable cause and Luz gets her DNA test, but not before Pedro kinda freaks out and says, "I guess it wasn't the space heater" and Skanky Valerie tries to outsmart the DNA test. (Impossible.)
Lo and behold, the girl from the Quinceara WAS Delimar. Once again, Lifetime makes desperate women believe that the impossible is possible. Which is why I love this shit.
I also love Melissa who, like Tio, would let me live in her basement. But unlike Tio, Melissa would believe me about my intuition, help get some DNA on the down low and never, ever try and set me up with someone wearing a bolo tie...
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
1. Alex makes his own flavored croutons.
2. When he was little and everyone sang ‘Happy Birthday,’ Alex would cry, try and hide and say, “Don’t SEE me!”
3. He calls me “Sis” which I think is very old-fashioned and cute.
4. When Alex went to camp, his counselor named his morning walk to the bathroom, “The A.M. Shuffle.”
5. I was once sitting at my desk feeling gross because I ate too many nuts, so I texted my brother, “I need a hug” and a half an hour later, a grinning Alex came bounding up the stairs to my office, arms outstretched. He hugged me, then he left.
6. When Alex thinks he’s alone, he sings “Livin’ In the City” by Stevie Wonder.
7. Alex buys candy at the movies, but he will not eat a bite until the actual movie starts. Previews don’t count.
8. Alex and I were apparently friendless for long stretches of time because we would spend weekends making home movies, including an epic masterpiece in which Alex played identical twins, one of whom was a criminal, the other was a cop.
9. Alex is my parents’ favorite which is okay with me because he’s my favorite too. (My parents, by the way, will readily admit this.)
10. For five years, Alex only wore jeans and green t-shirts.
11. Alex is a horrible driver.
12. In Alex’s college ID photo, he’s smiling but he’s crying because he had just found out that our grandfather died right before he had to pose. And whenever I would visit him in college, I would look at his ID because it made me feel better that he was as heartbroken as me.
13. Anytime a magicians asks for a volunteer from the audience, Alex gets picked.
14. Alex is horrible at boardgames. He will deny this.
15. We’ve been stuck together on Spotswood Family World Travels our whole lives. Often bored and wide awake, at 3am, we’d end up doing dumb shit. For example, on a cruise through the fiords of Northern Europe, Alex and I played midnight hide-and-seek in our tiny cruise cabin and I hid by covering myself in Kleenex and holding a Kleenex box in the middle of the room. Alex pretended to look for me for 20 minutes. He was 12. I was 17. This is the 462,945th reason Alexander Peterson Anthony Spotswood is the best person I’ve ever met in my life.
Monday, May 09, 2011
I fucking love 7x7. Sue me.
Last week, Catherine and I attended a party at Gump’s, which I attend for the sole purpose of being photographed by someone from Drew Altizer. I have zip, zero, zilch interest in anything that party was celebrating (some book, I think) because all I care about is perfecting my society photographs so I can one day be a good enough person to be included in a tiny photo in a local magazine full of advertisements and Hermes beach towels.
There is a small part of me in which my grandmother still lives and she was in full bloom at Wednesday’s party. Catherine and I followed that photographer around all night, as Catherine politely tolerates my sick, sad needs.
While I know this most recent collection of photos don’t make the grade of the Sunset Beacon much less 7x7, San Francisco Magazine or Paper City. But I think I’m getting better. Or worse, depending on how you look at it.
I did not cross my legs for the standing pose. Brock advises against this as he claims it makes one look like one needs to pee, but Brock is, by his own accord, pin thin. I have the calves of a hearty hill-dweller. So for next time, it’s the standing cross. I’d rather look thinner and holding it, don’t you agree?
The second thing I need to work on for next time is looking at the camera as opposed to the photographer, who I am obviously desperately trying to befriend. I look like David Patterson in this photo.
I’m now at like, 8 physical things to remember: Back straight, head up, chin down, shoulder tilt, medium smile, eyes open, legs crossed and eye on the lens. Remembering all of this in the split second the photographer says, “Can I take a quick shot?” is virtually impossible. I don’t know how those dumb broads do it.
Catherine, who is perfect in every way, feels she needs to work on “taming” her hair.
The third and final lesson I need to work on the next time I am photographed is to not care about something so stupid, shallow and pointless.
But I suspect it’s far more likely I’ll just remember to cross my legs.
Friday, May 06, 2011
Happy Mother's Day, Moms! My mom is cooler than yours, but I'm sure yours is nice too...
Wednesday, May 04, 2011
Read all about it, over at SFGate...
Monday, May 02, 2011
I plugged in my iPhone and we listened to Nelly (yeah, I have Nelly on my iTunes) and screamed and yelled like little girls when we hit 90 MPH.
This is not how we roll, by the way. We never roll like this.
I nervously signed something without reading it before stepping into this sexy, sexy machine. But that's not what today's Tourist Trapped is about. Oh no. Today, we pour over photos of fancy brunch and dine with a crazy person. There's always got to be a crazy person.
Up now on SFGate...
New People is what I'm sure people who work there call a "space." You know when you go on Fandango or whatever and you see "Viz Cinema" and ignore it? That's New People. Aside from all of the art and organic snacks and craft shows, the underground theater is like a huge, gorgeous, comfortable private screening room. All of the seats are Business Class Seats.
I was the second to last person let in, grabbing my ticket by throwing dignity to the wind and answering to the staffer who yelled, "Any singles? Anyone alone?"
It was all I could do not to turn to everyone in line and announce, "I actually have friends. They're already inside. I'm not the world's biggest loser or anything."
Christine was saving me an awesome seat, I lounged back in my luxurious movie chair and the movie began. I was thinking of all kinds of people who would really like this fascinating documentary, including the great Phil Bronstein. Oh, yay. A reason to email Phil and beg for worldly advice.
Except suddenly, Phil was in it. He's actually in the movie, sitting next to David Carr at some sort of weird televised debate. So I guess Phil wins that one.
Instead, I told my dad* all about the movie.
The only time my attention was diverted from Page One was when Rupert Murdoch came on the screen and like 6 horrible people in the audience starting hissing, like we were all at a "picture" in 1939.
Save the commentary for your blogs, folks.
I have no idea if or when you'll be able to see Page One, as that is the nature of attending sophisticated cultural events like film festivals. But should you find yourself presented with the opportunity, or someone WikiLeaks it online, kick back in a luxurious leather theatre chair and drink in an hour and a half of journalist-types marveling at iPads...
*Related: I forwarded my father a link to President Obama's hilarious routine at the White House Correspondent's Dinner. He wrote back, "Bethy, very funny! But who are Biggie and Tupac? Love Daddy."