Tuesday, March 24, 2009


British elementary school teaches children about acceptance and how not to be bigots; American fundamentalist Christian group to protest. Via Jezebel.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Double Dipping

I've been thinking a lot about buying a new TV. My current television is still functional, and I don't really have the money right now, but I'm looking ahead. And while looking ahead, I might as well think extravigantly. So, while I'm buying my fancy widescreen HD TV, I might as well pick up a blu-ray player. Blu-ray players will play all my current DVDs, so I don't technically need to replace my collection, but it's an interesting thought: Which movies do I love enough to buy again (or will benefit most from improved picture/sound)? From a quick scan of my shelf, here's my list:

1- Almost Famous. It's my favorite movie, so it automatically makes the list. This is technically a triple-dip, because I owned the one-disc version of the DVD before upgrading to the two-disc director's cut. A quick search of Amazon and Ebay shows that apparently it's not available in the US, but it doesn't look like it will be hard to get in a US compatible format.

2- Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Another of my personal favorites.

3- The Godfather Collection. There's a new remastered DVD collection out, and I think it's also available on blu-ray. The original DVD collection (the one I own) isn't a very good digital transfer; the picture quality isn't as good as it could be.

4- The Matrix. I've never seen any of the sequels, but the original is just so cool. I think it'll definitely benefit from improved picture and sound.

5- Moulin Rouge! Once I'm living on my own, I won't be able to steal my sister's copy. I guess this isn't technically double-dipping, since I don't own it myself, but I just think it'll look fantastic in high def, so I included it on the list anyway.

6- Serenity. Another triple-dip. If I decide to double-dip on TV series I already own, Firefly would be on the top of the list.

7- The original Star Wars trilogy. This might not count as a double-dip, because I only own it on VHS. 

8- V for Vendetta. Of my Natalie Portman movies, this is the one I think will benefit most from blu-ray.

So, Abby, which of your DVDs would you replace with blu-ray?

Friday, March 06, 2009


I really could not come up with a better title for this post.

Two days ago I posted a humorous video about gay marriage. This post, however, is not funny at all.

Annie Leibovitz, one of the most acclaimed artists living today, is in serious financial trouble. Why? Because when her partner, Susan Sontag, died in 2004, she left her entire estate to Leibovitz. But since the government doesn't recognize their relationship, Leibovitz is forced to pay up to 50% of the value of the estate in taxes. Had Leibovitz and Sontag been recognized as a married couple, Leibovitz wouldn't have to pay a dime. First she had to suffer through the death of a loved one, and now she has to suffer financially.

This is just one reason why gay marriage should be legalized. My heart breaks for Leibovitz. 

Story found via Evil Beet.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Best Albums of the Aughts

Pajiba's most recent Comment Diversion asked readers to list the best albums since 2000. Here's my list:

Probably not the "best" but some of my favorites:

Rilo Kiley "The Execution of All Things"
The Elected "Sun, Sun, Sun"
Tilly and the Wall "Bottoms of Barrels"
Wilco "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot"
Tegan and Sara "The Con"
The Decemberists "Picaresque"
The Postal Service "Give Up"

And I have to give a special shout-out to "War of Women" by Joe Firstman. It's not my favorite of his work, and it's definitely not the best album of the aughts, but it has deep sentimental value and not including it just feels wrong.

Immediately afterwards I realized I left out "I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning" by Bright Eyes, and I've thought of a few others since then. And would you believe that I'm the only person so far that chose "The Execution of All Things" as the best RK album? Everyone else chose "More Adventurous." I think when the final list is composed, the only albums I chose that will make the cut will be "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" and "Give Up." Maybe "Picaresque" but the Decemberists votes seem to be split between "Picaresque" and "Castaways and Cutouts." That could hurt the Decemberists' chances of making the list at all.