Monday, December 15, 2008

Gift Giving, By Rochelle

Well, I just paid the weekly bills and figured out what I have left over for gift
buying... not pretty. I truly dread this time of year. When I say dread I mean
hate. Before you start blaming it on my Jewish roots let me tell you nobody does
Christmas up more than my mother and sister. They are maniacs. Despite what they
say every year about "cutting back" and "money is tight" they still do it up big
time and seem to enjoy every minute of it. They are 100% Jewish so please don't go
blaming my Scroogeness on my religion.

I just do not believe in charging way beyond what I can affford to pay (I know, so
un-American of me) and I have always hated spending hours shopping and I have people
to buy for that I have no clue what to buy them. I don't find it fun finding clever
things for those "hard to buy for " people -- I find it annoying as hell. How about
we simply don't exchange gifts? How about you donate some money to the Humane
Society in my name and I willl donate to your favorite charity in your name? I
really don't want you to stress over buying me a gift either.

I don't mind indulging in gifts for my kids and husband but to be honest they need
to pick out their own clothes so that is out and mostly they want expensive things
like Nanos and cameras and GPS for the car. It was much more fun when they were
younger and I could surprise them with fake Barbie dolls from the dollar store. The
things i could do with $20 was simply amazing.

Anyway, I do love the time spent with my family because they are the funniest
people I know and we crack each other up. I love visiting my neighbors and other
friends on Christmas Eve. I love watching old (not remakes) Christmas movies. So I
guess I don't hate this time of year but I do hate the gift thing. It truly
depresses me. There is no meaning behind it so don't start spouting that crap to me.
People just do it out of habit and exercise no self control. Can't deal... Sorry.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

What is Christmas Really About? By Jackie

As Christmas draws near, people everywhere are scrambling to buy buy buy. The thought of presents underneath the tree has become more important than just spending quality time with the ones you love. As much as I love Christmas for the gifts, I have found myself thinking more about how much I love just hanging out at home and chillin with the fam. I can honestly say that this Christmas I don't care that much about getting everything I want. I don't really need anything. Yeah, money is always nice to have, but I just want to go home and watch some Christmas movies.

Today in my last class of Issues in Advertising my professor showed us a piece from a movie called, "What Would Jesus Buy?". It really freaked me out. I laughed at a few parts, but only because of how ridiculous people have gotten when it comes to spending and buying like crazy near the holidays. I think everyone should definitely watch this movie, or at least this clip we watched in class. Maybe it will make everyone think a little bit differently around this time of the year, and every month after.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Buntology in Boston (featuring Velvet Jones)

Angela and I ventured somewhat outside our element - well, at least our zip code - this weekend for former Westfield student and Greek goddess Natalia ("Tals") Araszkiewicz' birthday. Tals' sister, Karolina, welcomed most of the Buntology crew into her Brighton apt for a Saturday of celebration in Faneuil Hall. (Rhymes with "Daniel," for those of you on the wrong side of the country.)

Ivan, Xtina, Ldav and I scooted up to Brighton late Friday afternoon. There was a bit of a snag at the toll plaza - cars everywhere, people being morons. I was very very bitchy about it, but I hate when other people are driving and I was sitting in the middle in the back. The exact opposite of driving. Sorry, Ivan. But we got through that OK.

To keep the morale up during the long drive we created a song in honor of the birthday girl. We gave Lauren one line because she was a little nervous, then all of us yelled the last couple. Here's some variation of our rhyme.

Yo what up Tals, you the shit
/ we came down here so we could kick it
Happy early birthday to you / from me and the rest of our crew
Yo I came here all the way from N.A.
/ just to wish you a happy birthday
You 24 / and lookin so fly

so let's get drunk and fuckin hiiiigh woooo!!!

When we got there (and got a few beers down the hatch) we called Natalia into Karolina's kitchen to give her a private show, but everyone heard it and made us do an encore. We really nailed it the second time around. Amy-Lou Lagerstrom, another former Westodian and friend of Buntology, did the beat. ("N.A." is the the location of Buntology headquarters, North Adams.)

Our crew piled into cabs and headed off to Faneuil Hall. Hennessy's had two or three floors (at least two; I thought I heard three but I only went on two of 'em) and a ton of good-lookin' bouncers. We danced upstairs, had some drinks, blah blah blah ...

Eventually, we migrated downstairs, where we found the band Velvet Jones to be engaging and fun! (I heard them playing "Dammit" and freaked the f*ck out. - Angela) Angela and I quickly began to mix partying with business - who were these guys? There's nothing cooler than when a band will let you have fun and not be standoffish. I want my musicians to get down with me. These fellas - Rob, the singer, Ren, the guitarist, Marc, the bassist, and drummer Mike - were a blast. They let Angie, Xtina and I slither and stumble all around on their stage, croon into the mic, and pretty much act like the rock stars we thought we were after six or seven $5 Bud Lights. Thanks for the beer Mike!

Not only did these guys sing and play well, they chose fun songs that were a blast to jump around to. And most, most importantly, they played them loudly enough that you couldn't tell how horrendously we (me) were screwing up the lyrics. Which is good, because I was screeeammming "Mr. Jones," "Inside Out," god only knows what other pop shit. No offense guys. And you know the Buntology crew was there for every song.

And if Jackie had been there ... God help us. Jackie would have had a stroke.

I also had a serious and moving moment with Rob.* I can't fully put it in to words, but the final song, "Date Rape," when the lights came on and the bar was shutting down ... well, have a look.

*That picture was actually taken from about halfway through the first set when they were having a serious and moving moment during the song "Mr. Jones."

** Oh, good. I'd hate to think we were having a deeply touching singalong to "Date Rape."

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Lights out, bitches

So I used to work with this down-ass editor at The Berkshire Eagle named Matt Martinelli. Last winter, he conceived of the idea that we should all turn our lights off to save energy. I KNOW, right? Ridiculous. Conserving energy.

The idea was that businesses would turn off their lights during peak sunlight hours - 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. - every day, thus utilizing energy and saving money. Companies save cash and resources, we save the planet. Everyone wins! I thought it was pretty damn good idea.

Cut to a year later. Matt's got a nonprofit called Lights Out, Green In, of which he's executive director. He also has a wayyy better gig than working at The Eagle - he's now living in Boston and working at the Boston Herald. We miss you, Mateo!

My ex-boyfriend and friend (thank god because I would die without his support in the newsroom) Chris Carlson is also on the board of LOGI. He was a founding member. I gotta give these guys props, because when they're mad famous in a few years, we'll be able to say we gave them press in the beginning.

So don't be an id - support them and
support your planet. Buntology does!

LOGI also helps provide fluorescent light bulbs to low-income folks. That way, poor people can also help save the planet.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Ivan's "Guitar Hero World Tour" Review

The new "Guitar Hero: World Tour" by Neversoft and Activision came out last month. It’s been a while since its release, but I finally got a lot of time to play it during this short little vacation from school.

Some of the new features of this music-playing based game include a larger guitar controller, the ability to open-strum the guitar, new drum equipment and tracks, and a mic track for vocals. A new feature in the game for playing the guitar is the ability to play notes while holding and maintaining another note.  A feature for playing bass tracks include a straight line that appears on the screen indicating that the player should strum the controller without hitting any fret buttons. 

Also, what I think is the greatest feature in the game is the new “Music Studio” in which one can create his or her own custom music tracks.  Some people, for example my roommate J., work hard and practice countless hours learning to read and play instruments.  With the “Music Studio” one can easily just make their own song.  You can create custom tracks for lead guitar, rhythm guitar, bass guitar and drums.  Then you can upload your tracks and share them with others.  I am still trying to figure this one out myself, and if I can seriously get good at the “Music Studio” thing then maybe I will come out with my own album myself. So be on the look out for that!  

Now to the game’s soundtrack. The game includes many great songs to play. Since I am not going to list off every song, I am only going to name a few bands that I personally like to play: At theDrive-In, Billy Idol, Blink 182, The Doors, Interpol, Jimi Hendrix, Modest Mouse, Motorhead, Muse, No Doubt, Steve Miller Band, System of a Down, and many more.  

Overall this game is great!  I’ve also started playing multiplayer with my friends Danny Sullivan and (Matt) Minski, so I gotten a chance to play the bass, as well as the guitar, and they are both extremely fun.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Adams: Cooler than North Adams?

... Yes. Here's the scoop, readers.

Angela and Jackie and I found ourselves locked out of a favorite Pittsfield dive bar Friday night. It was 12:45; what to do? So I rang up a coworker from my day job, The Berkshire Eagle, and friend of Buntology Mike Foster. Mike is a very down guy.

We found ourselves at the Grille, a little bar on Summer Street in Adams. The beers were cheap and the boys were cool - why didn't we know about this place before? One of Mike's friends, Al Taylor, told us his band,
The Damaged, was playing a show at Cafe Latino the following night. When Ange found out it was a punk kind of band, she was down. And when I found out my favorite editor at The Eagle, Kevin, was in the band, I was down as well. (Jack was going to Boston.)

Cafe Latino is a hip restaurant / bar located in Building 11 of Mass MoCA, a world-famous contemporary art museum down the street from our house. No, seriously. Seriously it's world-famous and seriously it's down the street from our house. And we are ids because we almost never go there.

Alicia and I got there for the beginning of the show at 10 p.m. with Newcastles and Sam Adams hidden in our purse. (Sorry, the drinks there were absurdly expensive, and we're in a recession.) The Sam Adams ended up being a poor choice because they're so dark and hard to chug in a bathroom. The Newcastles went down smooth as honey, though.

The first band on the bill (whose name escapes me) was fine. Slap on a leather jacket and play three chords as fast as you can and sure you sound "punk," but song quality was lacking. The second band on the bill was The Damaged and they were legit as hell. They had great energy, well-structured catchy-ass songs and a loyal fan base.

Yeah they did - the band guys and their fans are all from North County, which means they would prettyyy much die/kill for each other. Kevin and his brother, Colin, the lead singer of The Damaged, are from Adams. So is Mike Foster. Those guys are tiiiight.

I found myself not wanting to leave to go pee (I was slightly intoxicated) because I didn't want to miss any of the set.
About 2/3rds of the way through the show the band decided to make up a song on the spot. They asked the audience to give them three letters from A-F to make up the chord structure and then they asked for a topic to which I replied "smokin' weed!" Fo' sho'.

I find it interesting that Angela uses the phrase "replied." She didn't "reply"; she screamed "SMOKING WEEEEEEED at the top of her lungs. At my editor's band.

They played a few more songs and ended their set, despite the crowd chanting for more. The third "headlining" band came on shortly after and nobody cared. Legit, there was nobody watching save for me and this sleazy "lemme be yo manager" type dude.

After the show, Alicia and I talked to the band and got some free swag!

Kev hooked us up with T-shirts and CDs and, my favorite, guitar picks. I was trying pretty hard not to act like a fan girl, but c'mon - these guys were too good. Kevin was a fanastic guitar player. Before, I kind of figured he would be OK. Half the guys I work with play guitar and all of them say they're good. Whatever whatever. But I was surprised and delighted to find out Kevin really IS good! And his band is mad cool. We partied a little bit with Al Friday / Saturday and had a blast. Ange and I are definitely gonna creep around and go to their next show. Sorry Kevin / Al. We're groupies now.

Hell yes. Basically we are huge groupies.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Buntology Thanksgiving

Angela says: Thanksgiving = guilt-free gluttony
Thanksgiving is the best holiday for a few reasons. First of all, it's the kickoff to the holiday season and i walk around my big warm house feeling all tingly and nostalgic inside. Second of all, five days at home is the perfect mini-vacation and a great vaca-teaser before winter break rolls around. But that best thing about Thanksgiving is that it encompasses everything i love in one day. Food, tree and family. I'm a simple girl.

I'm laying in my bed typing this and at 5:08 pm my family (save for alicia who's at work) is passed out. We eat early and for the rest of the day our food is buffet style on the dining room table. Let the eating fest continue into the night! I wasn't too pleased with my afternoon performance, i think living off of my roommate's rice pilaf for the last month has shrunk my stomach and left my body frail.

Jackie says: I eat to live and I live to eat!
Thanksgiving, a time to be with your family and loved ones. I love coming home for this holiday because it means the major amount of work from the semester is over with, and I get to chillax with mummsy, daddo, and most importantly Ange and Alicia. Ya know, I rarely get to see my sisters so it will be a rare treat this holiday season. Can you sense my sarcasm through text?

One of my favorite things to do in the whole entire world is eat. I also love to cook, so helping out on this day of feasting is always a good time. Sleeping is really cool too, so overall Thanksgiving is the best! Cook, eat, sleep, eat, eat, eat, sleep,

I am trying to think back on a memory from a past Thanksgiving I could talk about, but all I can remember is times of me taking foil off of dishes and sneaking food when nobody is looking. Alicia usually ends up catching me and gets all pissy. Ah, good times good times.

Rochelle says: The Best Holiday

I love Thanksgiving! It is actually my favorite holiday.
It starts with my job letting me out a couple of hours early on Wednesday and then moves right into a four day weekend. I don't have to have a gift ready for anyone for this holiday or drive anywhere. The focus is on having way too much food and just hanging out in comfortable clothes with my husband, daughters, and pets. Movies are watched in a variety of rooms, we nap, we eat more. If it isn't too cold I take my dog for a walk and pretend I worked off all the dessert calories. How could you not love this day?

I remember Thanksgiving when I was a kid. We always spent it with my Aunt Beatrice, Uncle Harry, and my cousins. My grandparents would be there too. It was such a good time. Mostly because I adored my aunt and uncle and whenever my parents were with them they would be in a good mood. All but my mother are gone now. You just think things will always be the way they are and then suddenly they aren't anymore and it's just kind of sad. My aunt actually died on Thanksgiving day back in 1989. Cancer. Anyway, I never connect the holiday to her death only to the good times had at her house. So those are my thoughts this Thanksgiving. Thankful for sweet memories and looking forward to making some new ones.

Will says: I have two Thanksgivings, you have one!
Seriously though, I do. Every Thanksgiving my family alternates which side of the family we eat dinner with and which side we eat dessert with. This year we're going to my dad's side for dinner and my mom's side for dessert. For all you 'left brain' people, I hope I haven't lost you yet because I know the math isn't right. That's still one Thanksgiving a year.

The second one comes the day after. My parents are both one of five children so both sides of my family are big. However, my dad's side is italian so in reality... it's massive. Because there are a lot of families on my dad's side and a lot of cousins and second cousins and close family friends, we all get together the day after Thanksgiving to enjoy a second Thanksgiving where we eat leftovers. Unfortunately (or fortunately) this event has become so hectic and popular we have started to have to make new food on the second day. And then, like most families, we mentally and physically prepare ourselves for the four to five following days of remaining leftovers. Each and every one of which, I will enjoy.

Ivan O. Cordero: Ivan’s Thanksgiving Dinner
Every Thanksgiving we have dinner usually at my Mom and Dad’s in Springfield, sometimes at my sisters in Ludlow. I pick up my grandmother, Abuela Julia, and bring her over for dinner. My brothers David, Roy, and my sister Lisa come over. Lisa’s two kids (my nephew’s) Peter and Connor come over too. My brother, Orlando and I, usually end up trying to avoid preparing anything for the day because we’re lazy. But that’s usually impossible and we have to go get some rolls, or dessert, or prepare the table or something.

My mother makes the majority of the food, but my dad helps and makes a lot of stuff too. Being the picky eater that I am, I usually go thanksgiving without eating too much. My mom will have all this turkey, pork, rice and beans, potato salad, pasteles (food made of plantain bananas grinded up with meat and stuff that boiled, my mom makes it a lot and everyone loves it) and a lot of other stuff too that I don’t even know. I usually eat something quick before dinner since I don’t each much. I’ll sit at the table and chill with the family at dinner but I usually will only end up eating a bread roll, and a couple pastelillos. What’s pastelillos? It’s Spanish and I don’t know what it’s called in English. But it is like this fried turnover thing, made with dough and with meat in the inside. It’s delicious, and that is really the only Spanish food/Thanksgiving food I eat.

So on Thanksgiving it is nice to be home and see all of us get together, friends and family, and be thankful for everything we have. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Bailout Will the Baker

Let's make up a story. I recently read that keeping your mind active and thinking is a great way to decrease your risk of Alzheimer's, so maybe this will help give us a head start.

Let's pretend I open a bakery called Will's Bakery (what a nice ring) and I sell cookies, cakes, muffins and all kinds of goodies. For all intensive purposes let's pretend I open up my first bakery in North Adams and I'm the only baker in town. Well all these North Adams people start buying my baked goods for a while and it doesn't take them long to realize... Will's a horrible baker. His cookies taste like baking soda, his muffins are stale and his cakes are dryer than a bad case of eczema. Unfortunately for the people of North Adams, my atrocious bakery is the only one in town and all these families need to blow out their birthday candles on something. So I make a little money.

Now I'm feeling loved since I'm still making a buck so I expand my business and open up shops in all sorts of cities and towns throughout New England. Sadly it doesn't take long for people to figure out that my baking skills are non-existent so I start losing business. Over the course of a few months of bad business, I'm nearing bankruptcy. Bummer.. I really thought I had a chance of making the baking big time. And then it hit me. I can still keep my bakery alive if I walk door to door asking strangers for money. Talk about the power of thinking big!

So let's now pretend I'm walking to your door and we're total strangers. I explain to you my business is failing and I need... I dunno... let's estimate 25 billion dollars over the next five months to sustain it. I then, with little pressure, explain that you won't have to pay for it on your own... you can share the load with all the other people I can rally to my cause. And we'll even have payment plans so that you only have to donate a little bit of your paycheck at a time. Wait a minute Will... you're getting ahead of yourself. No one wants to eat your shitty cupcakes in the first place... why would anyone be willing to give you money to make more? I guess they wouldn't.

Okay let's end this chapter of the story because it sucks. If GM, Ford, and Chrysler can't make cars people want to buy and their business is failing, why is it the responsibility of people who pay taxes to keep it afloat? Isn't our economy supposed to be in a bad state? Why is surrendering even more of the little money we have to a terminally ill business a good investment? Surely when those companies go under, they'll be replaced. There's gotta be a better baker out there than Will Cimino. Let's save 25 billion dollars and meet him sooner than later.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Entourage and the city...of Westfield (by angela)

The Entourage season finale aired last night on HBO, and while I've seen no more than 1.5 episodes of the show and didn't watch a lick of the season finale, my friend Tim told me, "They were in Queens and Vince got a role in a Scorsese movie."

In last week's episode, Vince, played by Adrien Grenier (who we all remember from Drive Me Crazy!!!), discovers his career is going down the crapper. At least that's what is telling me (in a nutshell). It should be noted that Adrien Grenier is extremely, extremely hott.

The point of all this is that I live across the hall from six dudes. All of them watched Entourage yesterday/ asked me if I was watching it / talked about it throughout the day. And that's fine, but don't tell me it's not blatantly Sex & the City for guys. And don't make fun of me when I cry when Carrie and Aiden break up for the second time! "And that night, we slept on the other side of the wall...for the last time," or something like that. I don't know, I've only seen it a few times. It's too painful. WHY CARRIE, WHY?!?!?!?

In the first clip Ari goes on one of his crazy tirades! And in the second clip Samantha goes on one of her crazy tirades! Honestly they aren't very similar but hey who doesn't want to hear chicks talk about getting tea bagged?

[editor's note: I legit took three hours searching for clips of the shows to compare and ended up just watching mad Sex & the City moments. Balled my eyes out when Harry proposes to Charlotte.]

Sunday, November 23, 2008

mark hoppus speaks out = ange having a heart attack

I'm freaking out right now.

"In the midst of everything else that has happened lately, tom, travis, and i have all spoken together. first through a number of phone calls, and then a couple of weeks ago we all hung out for a few hours. they’ve all been great, very positive conversations. we’re just reconnecting as friends after four years of not talking. it’s a good thing." >>> - Mark Hoppus

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Life on Mars by Rochelle

While my darling daughter, Jackie, anxiously awaits the season premiere of "24" I am delighted to have found a new show that seems to appeal to both me and my husband.

This is a rare thing. We typically suffer through each other's shows (OK, he watches endless hours of "Law and Order" while I have grown to like "Family Guy") so when a TV show comes along that captures both of us... well that is a special moment in the Bunt household.

Some shows we have both loved:
#1 Hill Street Blues (the best ever! endlessly entertaining, Dennis Franz was outstanding, every character was as interesting as the next, never we loved this show)

#2 Sopranos (please... need I explain)

#3 House (I liked it and Rod grew to like it)

Okay.. so that's about it. Until now. Show #4 is Life on Mars, Thursdays 10 PM on ABC.

This is one of those shows that started out in England and we ripped it off and did a US version. The story is about a cop who gets whacked by a car and wakes up in 1973. It is a time travel, cop and robber, surreal type of show and the cool part is the "past" is the year I graduated high school. Sam Tyler, the star, is quite the hottie which is a bonus because I love the show anyway. Sam is trying to figure out why he is back in time. Is he in a coma or perhaps dead? Can he get back to 2008 or is this it? Oh, and every so often there are mix ups in the time... like he picks up a paper and there is a story about G. Bush or a kid has on a shirt with a picture of a current band.

It is really worth checking out. See how your momma lived way back before cell phones, internet and DNA evidence. Part of the fun of the show is watching Sam struggle through 1973 with the knowledge of 2008. There are changes in language and expressions. I actually caught a "blooper" because at one point Sam said something "sucks" and no way would that be okay in 1973.

Oh, and I just found out that this actor Jason O'Mara who plays Sam is from Ireland and is just doing an American accent for the show. That always impresses me.

Other actors on this show include Michael Imperioli (Christopher from Sopranos), Harvey Keitel, and Gretchen Mol.

So the Bunts have another show they agree on. Check it out this Thursday night.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Spike > Edward ... by Alicia

"Twilight" book review:
No bite, no thanks.

I am in bed right now, where I've been for the better part of a week, derailed by pneumonia and bronchitis. Don't cry for me - I've used the opportunity to explore my psyche and some literature. Everyone's been telling me I would love "Twilight," the story of mortal Bella and her beautiful blood-drinking boyfriend, Edward. Since the movie debuted in theaters today, it's the perfect time to review it, no? I finally got up off my high horse and deigned to purchase the obsession-inducing novel online 2 days ago. Official Buntology stylist and longtime friend Jodie Botto offered to lend me the book, but I forgot to take it and thought to myself, "Why do something for free when I can frivolously throw away my money?" I got the book, a 500-page tome, this afternoon in the mail. ($7.98, no shipping charge, from eBay.)

Being hoarse and looking rather vampiric myself, I abstained from the hopping North Adams party scene for a night, and instead "bit" (get it?) into my new book.
I finished about 10 minutes ago. Don't be alarmed by my "inhuman" speed (get it?) - when I have the time and inclination, I can polish off 500 pages in about 4 hours. Which I did.

My eyes are swollen and my lower extremities are atrophied, but as a dutiful Buntology writer, I'm using my last reserves of strength to review the book.

Bella Swan, clumsy and unwittingly gorgeous, moves from her beloved Arizona to her dad's home in Forks, Washington. Long story. She doesn't think she'll like it, because it's always cloudy and rainy, and she doubts she'll fit in, but guess what? Not only does she fit in, every boy in school wants a piece. Including pale, perfect Edward, he of the smoldering eyes and crooked smile. First they're lab partners, then he saves her life a few times, then she finds out he's a vamp, then they vow to be together forever and ever. What problems could possibly arise from THIS relationship?

This was a good junk-food read. Like a Butterfinger, I devoured it quickly and enjoyed it, but derived nothing truly satisfying from it.

The story was painfully predictable: Why was Edward so mean to Bella at first? Because he's so attracted to her and they can't be together. Heard that one before. Uh-oh, his vampire sister doesn't approve - yawn. What makes her so special, anyway? That she has no sense of self-preservation? Seriously?

I mightn't have had such a problem with the tried plot if it weren't for the fact that the words "smoldering" and "chiseled" and "perfect" weren't used so often. "Smoldering" especially.

I became increasingly aware of how frequently Edward's eyes were the topic of description. Which is fine, he's a vamp, and their powerful gaze is often the subject of literary scrutiny. But eyes can only smolder so much before a human - or a reader - either gets pulled in or loses interest. I need more than smoldering eyes and a crooked smile - I need a little more conviction from my vamps. I need to be a little afraid.
Sorry, Edward. Not doin' it for me.

I'll take alabaster-skinned Spike* any day.

Besides the predictably broody, moody, magazine cover-worthy Edward, Bella's acceptance and adoration of the whole situation was wholly unbelievable. I also thought Meyer's treatment of the vampire nature was offensive - the Cullen family doesn't feed on people, only animals.
And throughout the narrative, there is a sense that everyone - the vamps, the humans - find feeding on humans to be reprehensible. The author's disdain for what we all know to be a vamp's true nature comes through, and makes the story pitifully shallow. Part of what makes the vampire such a fascinating and enduring character is that sensual, passionate nature and essential desire for blood. Turning a vampire into a shameful, guilty creature is entirely unappetizing (get it?).

I did, however, like Edward's family - the compassionate Dr. Cullen, who overcomes his bloodlust to care for humans; the elfin-faced Alice, who can see the future (like fashion and stock trends!); and my favorite, big, blond, burly Emmett, who treats Bella in the rough-and-tumble style of a big brother.

Bottom line - I liked the book OK, but I don't know if I'll go for the sequel. Meyer's vampires are meek and indecisive, but not in that complex, I-can't-drink-your-blood-so-I'll-have-to-settle-for-hot-sex way. I like my vampires as brooding as the next girl, but what's the use of superhuman feelings if you can't channel them into something physical?

Final thoughts: No sex, no feeding on humans? NEXT.

* Spike is the sexy, sarcastic, moody vampire from late-season Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Is he going to kick her ass, make out with her or drink her blood? I don't know ... and I like it! Now THAT's how a man should treat a lady.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Jack Bauer > Chuck Norris

After much anticipation my favorite show will be back on the air in less than a week! Well, not totally back. It is only a two hour teaser really, but I will get to see Jack Bauer back in action..finally. The two hour event is on Sunday, November 23rd at 8:00 on Fox! The real show doesn't start start until January 11th.

I remember seeing a small preview a long time ago, before the whole writer's strike issue and it looked crazy good. Tony, a main good guy who was supposed to be dead, wasn't dead and was a bad guy and C.T.U. the place where everyone worked wasn't there anymore and all this wildness. Now the preview I am seeing is like Jack in Africa helping African children or something? I am kinda confused because Jack doesn't care about children except his hot ass daughter (Elisha Cuthbert from Girl Next Door), and how and why is he in Africa? These are questions I need answers to get to the bottom of on November 23rd, and so should you.

Also, I hate when people compare Jack Bauer to Chuck Norris. Chuck Norris is dumb. Yeah I watched Walker Texas Ranger when I was little but it was corny and the fighting was corny. The fighting and killing and torturing that Jack Bauer brings down on terrorists is intense and he could beat the shit out of Chucky. No contest. I just wish Keifer Sutherland didn't go to jail for getting so many DUI's ..kinda ruins Jack's good guy image for me.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Pleading the Fifth by Alicia

Alicia has been freaking out about this video all week. It's a lecture from Professor James Duane about why you should never talk to the police. It's pretty interesting, but I don't talk to the police anyway. I'm a "good kid." - Ange

Hi. Yes. Never, ever talk to the police. Why talk to the police? - it can NEVER help you, only hurt you. Don't answer questions, if you're innocent, if you're guilty - don't talk to the police. Don't do it.

The only time I talk to cops is to say "get that flashlight out of my face, PIG."

No, just kidding. Actually, I had a very positive experience with a cop last night on my drive home from work. My office is 22.6 miles from my house. During the day, I can make the drive in 28 minutes. At night, I can do it in 23 (my best time).

I got pulled over for doing 43 in a 25. OK, it's 12:30 at night, there's no one in that school zone.
Of course, I had this whole James Duane lecture on my mind, so I'm like "I'm not tellin this guy ANYTHING."

But, to my delight, the cop was young and tall and kind of cute. Totally shaved head, like Patrick Stewart (who I also think is hot).

So at first this guy is trying to act all tough, but I'm just so damn sweet to cops he couldn't play for long.

He asked me where I was coming from, I told him my job. He asked where I worked, I told him. He asked me when I'd gotten out. Hmmm ...

Me: I don't know, like, a half-hour ago? (19 minutes.)
Officer 6'1": Do you know why I pulled you over?
Me: Noo ... (cell phone makes doorbell noise - a text!)
: I clocked you at 43 in a 25.
Me: (Big smile) I .. iiiii .... A. I didn't realize it was a 25, I thought it was 35, and B. I thought I was only doing 40. (Smile)
Suddenly-Not-So-Authoritative: (Poorly repressed smile) OK, well .. (glances at my license) OK, just sit tight, Miss Bunt, I'll be right back.

(8 or so minutes pass. I text everyone I know telling them I'm about to get a warning.)

Officer Can't-Stop-Smiling: How do you feel about warnings?
Me: I love them - and I love cops who give them to me! (big smile, with teeth)
Officer Crew-Neck-Sweater: Well, you'll like this. I'm gonna save you $180. .. Now, so you know, I always work this shift, so I'll be watchin' for you.
Me: Well, I always drive home at this time, so I'll look out for you.
Officer Trying-To-Find-A-Way-To-Prolong-This-Conversation: Well, OK. You should slow down, though, Miss Bunt. (smile)
Me: I will, officer, I promise.
Officer Semi: OK. Have a good night.
Me: You too! (parting smile)
(I stuff the warning in my glove compartment with all the others and drive away. Cue the music)

I may have left out a smile or an eyelash-bat here or there, but that's what happened.

BUT. If this guy had asked me any questions, inquired what was in my glove compartment ... Well, just watch the vid.

Everything I know lately I've learned from the Howard Stern Show by Rochelle

My kids know, my mother knows, most of my co-workers know. I am addicted to The Howard Stern Show. Not such a big deal except I am a 53 year old, middle class female. Now don't get me wrong, I can live without the bits that involve strippers and hookers but to be honest they are not that frequent and that's always a good time to actually shower and get ready for work. Oh, who am I kidding? I bring the speaker into the bathroom with me so I don't miss even a second of the show. I even listen to the wrap up show and repeats on the weekends to catch what I missed when I was at work.

The Stern show is my soap opera. I know all the characters and their problems. Artie relapsed and started doing heroin again but he went to rehab and is clean now. He is FINALLY seeing a therapist. We all hope he and Dana will get back together but there is the dog issue... Howard and Beth got married recently after being together eight years. Howard swears he won't have anymore kids but he swore he wouldn't get married again so.... Sal is still married but miserable, Ralph is single and won't take a lie detector test to prove he isn't a thief, Richard will do "gay" things to be entertaining for the show but swears he isn't gay, and so on and so forth....Gary, and Robin, and Fred, and the Wack Pack, and all the others. I need to know who did what over vacation, I need to hear about the wedding and what Sal and Lisa did since they weren't invited.

See, it isn't just naked women and gross stuff. It is stories and humor and drama and craziness of everyday life, in a life that I am not part of but I know ALL about.

Sometimes I think Howard is an ass because he has some really old fashioned ideas (for real!) but the man is a genious for what he has created.

Some nights the TV never gets turned on and my husband and I just lay in bed listening to the Stern show AGAIN. Like watching a rerun of a favorite show.
I wonder if Howard would be surprised if he knew.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Covering the coverage? with Ange

10:15 pm
This is what I know so far. Question 1 was NOT passed (holler), question 2 WAS passed (
HOLLER) and question 3 was passed (yay!). Not sure if these are projections or what.

I also know (based on projections) that Obama took Pennsylvania and Ohio which means he basically has this shit on lock.

I'm sitting in my friends' apartment watching the coverage. We are all drinking and hanging. I am SQUEALING inside. AJHGALJHGA. Just had to call my mom.

This is AMAZING. The first prez election I've been able to vote in and it is the most historical election ever!!!

We have been switching back and forth from CNN to MSNBC to FOX News. So CNN is like, "Obama is projected to win here, here and here," and MSNBC is like "BOOO YAHHHH! OBAMA IS TAKIN' IT AND MCCAIN HAS NO CHANCE!" and FOX is like, "Sooo...*looks around* annnywayy..."

Comedy Central is on now. I feel this crazy buzz of excitement and disbelief spreading across the country. I am actually proud to be American in this moment.

11:03 PM






Between 11:05-11:20
A bunch of us head outside armed with cameras and a notepad (I had the notepad). Groups of students were walking around and most of them heading to the Father Dean Dining Commons for Pancakes with the President! You could tell that students just wanted to be outside sharing in the vibe. The campus really did feel alive. We all gave each other high fives. (Rhymes mcgee over here. But seriously, we did.)

11:25 PM
I'm watching CNN. McCain is giving his concession speech. The crowd is pretty disheartened. Sarah Palin looks bummed, or maybe it's just relief? Cindy and Sarah are wearing matching chiffon(?) suits.

I see McCain people hugging, chatting. Me and my roomie (and Buntology photog) are smoking a victory bowl! Sorry but it's true. We are. We must.

"Barack Obama will become the next President of the United States," says this dude on the news.
"People will always remember where they were the moment they first heard..."

11:40 PM
Christina and I are still watching CNN. Obama won by a LANDSLIDE. I feel so weird inside. It's like I'm finally part of something historical and awesome. This is the first time I've ever felt truly connected to America and iiii like it!

12:00 PM
Obama is speaking now. He sounds great, but I can't help being jaded about the fact that this speech was probably written weeks ago. Barack really tugs my heart strings when he says he misses his family tonight.

I'm trying to see through Obama's presidential facade and figure out what he is actually thinking.

His speech was good. I wasn't really moved by it, Christina says she thought it was dope. Obama did seem to get emotional toward the end.

Joe Biden is onstage now, I wonder what he is thinking.

Michelle Obama and the wife of Joe Biden come out. They are pumped. Michelle walks over to Barack and hugs him and she said something to him that I couldn't make out. She seemed like she was consoling him almost. This must be such an intense and emotional time for Obama. Take a nap, baby boo.

Ward 3A...and a Van Ride from Hell by Jackie

Election day is finally here! I woke up at 9:00 AM with butterflies in my stomach. It felt like Christmas morning, except at the end of this day I might kill myself or move to another country. It all depends on the polls baby! (Helllloooo Sweden! - Angela)

At 9:45 AM my Political Communication class met together outside of the Ely Building and piled into an "alleged" 15 person van. It was quite stuffy and with all the moving around and opening and closing of doors I saw one too many butt cracks. Nothing is wrong with a butt crack every once in a while but it was way too early.

We were headed to the different voting wards in Westfield to hand out surveys to voters.
As soon as I sat down and buckled in, my T.S.D. (Temperature Sensitivity Disorder) started acting up. Angela complained of the temperature as well and of it smelling like bodies. My roommate Caity sat between us and controlled the digital camera.

"I feel like I'm on a road trip, only in a van filled with strangers who breathe heavy." - Angela

Angela and I were loud and acting a little obnoxious. Well I was acting a little obnoxious. We sat in the way back and Angela kept flailing around because a fly was buzzing around her. (I hate flies because they never know when to fuck off. Listen fly, I don't have any problem with you if you don't have any problem with me. But just stay in your turf and stop buzzing around.) She kept trying to hit it with a clipboard but it wasn't working. When it finally flew up towards the front of the van Angela started laughing and yelled to the other students, "Ha ha now you can deal with it!" They had no clue what was going on. (Those bastards.)

Sadly, Angela and I were separated and I was sent off to some school with my friend and fellow classmate, Jay. We surveyed some pretty crazy people! It was a lot of fun. I talked to a Vietnam Vet who was racing around in his scooter with a huge sign on the back of it saying GO VOTE. He seemed a little loopy, but I do know that he voted for Obama. When we first arrived at Ward 3A a cop came out telling us we had to be 150 ft. away from the premises or some crap. In actuality we could stay right in the front, even go in the building as long as we weren't promoting or trying to sway anyone's votes. We were simply handing out surveys. I didn't want to fight with a cop so I crossed the street. I did get the cop to fill out a survey though and he was the man. He told me he thought there shouldn't be dog racing and that weed should be legalized completely! I hope this guy pulls me over sometime.

Another guy who seemed to have lost his marbles found his way over to Jay and I. He said he voted for Obama because he wanted to vote for the person who was less smart...uhhh so that was weird. There was a toothless guy who talked to us about his Hockey interests and I am pretty sure he was a McCain fan. The best part of the ward was probably when a really cute dog came walking by and hung out for a few minutes.

(Meanwhile, Caity and I were at ward... 2B? It was pretty exciting, except I felt like a big newb. With the help of our teach' we gave out surveys. All of the "old people" loved me when I asked if they were first time voters. People were mostly nice, and because my prof was kind enough to find volunteers for us we avoided the awkwardness of being shut-downnnn by those who didn't want to be surveyed.

One of the last people I polled was an older gentleman. I asked him if he felt informed about health care and he said something to the effect of, "well, I'm just getting ready to die anyway..." Aren't we all?)

Thanks to (Doctor) Professor Tom Gardner for taking the photographs of survey takers/survey givers in action!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Fantasy realized! by Alicia

FIRST OFF and MOST IMPORTANT: Mama got second place in her costume contest at work! She was half-devil, half-angel. She wore my red pumps and took home $300 cash money! And what is she doing with that cash, you ask? Buying a new cam for buntology! My mama know how to werkk that azzz. (Sorry to be disrespectful, Mama, but I gotta play to the crowd.)

So I had originally (back in June) decided I wanted to be Buffy the Vampire Slayer for Halloween. My friend and Angie's roommate Lauren was going to be Faith, Buffy's dark-haired slayer nemesis. We planned it all out at the first Bunt BBQ. But that was back when I was a blond. I colored my hair red over the summer.

We realized I couldn't really be the blond slayer with red hair - I could be Willow, Buffy's redheaded lesbian witch buddy, but fewer people would get it. And Lauren couldn't really be Faith on her own; no one would get it.
Long story short, I went from slayer to vamp.

I have always loved vampires. I want to be one; I want to date one. I want to do some demented sensual vampire things, you know? Oh and listen up, all you fake-ass, "Twilight"-reading, blood-bandwagoner johnnie-come-latelies: I had a thing for troubled, tortured blood-drinking boys since before you were even born.

So Angela and I got these special vamp teeth. I knew when I picked 'em out they'd be hardcore - it said on the box that they're for "gamers," like people who do live-action role playing (LARPing). We had to like mold them into our mouths, but don't TELL me it didn't look totally badass.

I had to come up with two nights of costumes, for Friday and Saturday.
Friday night, actual Halloween, everyone was kind of tired from Thursday. But I worked and went to bed Thursday, so I was ready to rage. I dressed up as a lumberjack, which I thought of last-second as an excuse to rock my new Timberlands. Lauren was an elf! That's her next to me, with the bow and the ears, which it's too bad are hidden in the pic. Lauren loves elves and fairies and all things fantasy, much like myself. All night, she kept jumping around and crying out in delight, "I'm a fuckin' elf!!!"

Buntology staff writer Will Cimino and his cousin, Steve, both had friends from home visit. Will wore a gorilla mask and it made me very nervous for reasons I can't quite put my finger on.

Night two. Vamp time! Someone's ass was gettin BITTEN. You know, not someone's literal ass. Their jugular.

On Saturday, Buntology publicist Ivan (who dressed up as Honus Honus from Man Man the first night and Michael Jackson) the second had a Halloween party at his apartment, which we call "Mont Street." Ange, her roomies, her neighbors and I were getting ready for hours. The vamp teeth, which came with a whole kit to construct a custom-fit mold, took 30 minutes alone. Jackie was down in her apartment with her roommate, being cranky and indulging in some self-loathing. But eventually, we made it to the party.
Angie's teeth didn't work right, I like messed them up somehow. They wouldn't stay in. So, with a quick dab of red lipstick on her neck, Angela had a new costume: vampire victim. And it turned out to be the best costume there, cause she looked like a hot-ass vamp victim. Several stals (stal is short for stallion, meaning a strapping, appealing young man) blatantly told me how good my sis was looking. I was like "Ummm don't I look pretty too?" Whatever LIKE I NEED YOUR VALIDATION!!!

But enough about my psyche! What else happened, you ask? Well, here's what:

1. The roommates and Jack and her roommate Caity left en masse and went to McDonald's, leaving Ange and I to run shit at Ivan's.
2. My teeth, which were very sharp, cut my lower lip so it was all puffy and a little bloody-looking. So I kept sneaking drunken looks at myself in mirrors, pretending I was a vampire infiltrating a party and preying on young healthy college kids.
3. I toasted to "jah love" with Amy-Lou, a former Mont Street resident and friend of buntology, about 30 times. We were drinking Red Stripe, and we made a grand plan of how we should go to Jamaica this summer and really get into it and learn the history and relax and party. Yes, good idea in theory, but like my costume .. just a dream.
4. People continued to tell me how bangin my sister looked.
5. We plugged buntology a little.
6. We left and hung out for a little.
That's about it.

But now that Halloween's over, we can look ahead to Thanksgiving -- and the start of "Rock the House," a long-running sketch comedy Angela and Jackie created at least 10 years ago. They videotape all the holiday festivities starting from Thanksgiving and do a Christmas countdown. RtH has songs, interviews, fashion shows, dances, decorating and, perhaps most famous, a little program called "Angela's Anything Show." Curious? Anxious? Titillated? Stay tuned, because this year, RtH is going digital!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Hell-O-Ween by Jackie

Halloween 08 has finally come to an end. The festivities began on Thursday night and didn't end until Sunday. On the actual day of Halloween I had already had enough and was ready to call it quits with the whole costume thing. I don't know why, I just wasn't feelin' it. Takes way too much work to find a costume, especially when you want to spend close to nothing.

The roommates and I had a Gin Bucket/dress up party on Thursday night. I made the gin
bucket with 1 handle of cheap gin and 1 liter of Sprite. Apparently you are supposed to use two liters of Sprite, oops! Tasted pretty awful. (Tasted pretty good to me. So did those four shots of 100 proof Soco I took earlier in the night Arghhbgh... - Angela) At around 10:30 PM one of the R.A.'s came to the apartment and basically said, "We know you are having a party and drinking and if you don't turn off the music and be quiet we will get everyone in trouble." Annnoyingggg! (Guess that is what happens when you have the resident director and her two toddlers living below you.) So a lot of people left and it turned into kind of a bummer. Up until that point I had fun stabbing people with my devil pitch fork.

Friday night all of my roommates were gone and I had the apartment to myself. Alicia came up to visit along with fellow Buntology writer, William Cimino. I took out the leftover Gin Bucket and had a little get together. I was tired and threw on some wings. I was beat from the night before so it was way too hard to drink. That was the actual night of Halloween and I didn't even do anything too exciting. (Me either. My body was too sore from puking up bile from 6:00 AM to 11:00 AM that morning.) The best part of the night was probably receiving funny drunken texts from my roommate Caity.

Saturday night Ivan had a Halloween Party kegger at his apartment. There were lots of people there and even though it was freezing outside, the body warmth from the tons of humans made me sweaty and irritable about 20 minutes in. (When I got to Ivan's I asked him if he was dressed as Jack White. I was like, "Oh my God you should have told me I could've been Meg!" Turns out he was dressed as Michael Jackson. Whatever.) The night ended with a crazy trip to the McDonald's Drivethru and a horrible migraine. As soon as I got back into my apartment and shoved a number 4 down the hatch I started going blind in my right eye. I popped a pill and went to bed. Still feeling the headache today. (The night ended with me making rice pilaf and chicken with frozen veggies at 5:00 AM. Yum.)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Ode to A Calico

Your hair is everywhere

But usually on my bed

The place you came to cuddle

And liked to sleep on top my head

Sometimes while I was reading

You’d sprawl out on my tummy

It made it hard to breathe

But I still thought it was funny

At the sound of a can opener

You would run into the room

Where you are right now

I only can assume

I will miss your little head bashing into my face

And never seeing you again

I know just aint the case

So somewhere down the road

Where we meet I’ll have to guess

But I will bring a can of tuna

And make us TNS

Jasmine memorial by Mom

If you happened to be walking by the Bunt house last night,10/27, at around 10 PM and peeked into the backyard you might have thought you were witnessing a rehearsal of something special for Halloween night. There we were me, Rod, and our dog Jenny. I was lowering something into a hole and Rod picked up a shovel and began covering it
with dirt. The rain started to fall and we held a lantern for light.Truly something out of a Stephen King novel. Surely any minute a werewolf would jump out or our dog would start to growl and turn rabid. Or maybe, our precious cat Jasmine would
suddenly come to life and be her young, healthy self again.

None of that happened.

When our twin daughters, Angela and Jackie, were in the second grade they stumbled
upon two kittens at a tag sale. They pleaded with me for one of the kittens. Their dad, Rod, and I were dog people so I was sure that he would never agree to the request. I said if dad says okay I would agree. I figured I was safe. HA! Dad was all for it, or maybe he just couldn't say no to his girls.

The girls are now college seniors. That cat, a beautiful calico, spent 14 years as queen of the Bunt pet household. You say you hate cats? Many folks who came to our house said the same. Then they met Jasmine. She loved people, loved attention, loved to shower affection on people. Visitors had a hard time resisting her. My mother spent most of her life not trusting cats but she adored Jasmine. Same with my brother-in-law.

Jasmine wasn't perfect. She merely tolerated our other pets and at times could be quite a bitch to them. She was completely a people cat.

So last night after weeks of watching her get better then worse with this cancer thing we made the ride to the vet for the overdose of tranquilizer.

When we buried Jasmine we said a few words. I don't believe she heard them or anything but it was more to honor her. You know, you were the cat that changed us from 'dog only' people into 'dog and cat' people. You opened the door for the other cats in the house. That kind of stuff. Mostly I think we will honor Jasmine by the fact that so many of our passwords involve some variation of her name (woops...forget that).

So here's to you Jazzy. The very first Bunt cat. You were loved big time.

Monday, October 27, 2008

The Emergency Broadcast System.. can suck it by Will

The Emergency Broadcast System.. can suck it

The traditional fears of a young kid never really applied to me. Monsters never really scared me, I was fine with the dark, and thunder, or burglars. But I really don't think I can earn any bragging rights from any of that when I reflect on what really scared me... and slightly still does. The Emergency Broadcast System. Those 30 second bits on tv that struck at random were the only one thing that could dwarf my fear the alarm system in my old house. I used to switch gears from first to fifth when walking past it in a hallway. I even regularly sat myself in the kitchen in the seat the FURTHEST away from the nearest alarm unit on the wall in the next room, just to avoid making eye contact with it. Yup, it had eyes. Tiny illuminated green eyes. But I'd have gladly had a staring contest with those satanic eyes before not blocking my ears and running out of the room during the Emergency Broadcast System.

After growing up a little, I could never put my finger on what it was that scared me so badly. If I had to speculate, I'd assume it was the fact that it randomly came on (or attacked) during television shows and commercials, muting all sound instantly, and switching to a man in a deep voice trying to assure me, "THIS IS ONLY... A TEST." Then came the robotic modem-esque tones. The way I remember it as a kid, was a running text on the bottom in all caps saying words I never read because I was too scared to, with a picture of a satellite against a red background. It was all low budget and felt very "early 80's" even when it was running in the 90's. I remember working up the courage to ask my dad what it meant and he joking told me, "If any aliens land on earth they're going to run that message so we know what to do." Bad answer, Dad. Now I'll only be twice as afraid. But it turns out he wasn't exactly wrong...

A decade and a half later I'm watching Carson Daly's show at 2:00 in the morning... Don't judge me. In the middle of one of his godawful bland monologues it cuts to the Emergency Broadcast System. It's funny because I still to this day get extremely uneasy when it comes on, especially when it wakes me up. But after I bear through it like a child waiting for the doctor to take a needle out of his arm, I start to think about it... I really have no idea what the Emergency Broadcast System is all about. So I decide to do some research online. Where do I look? Wikipedia obviously.

According to Wikipedia, the Emergency Broadcast System has been around since the early 60's and it's for the President of the United States to communicate to the American public in the event of war, threat of war, or grave national crisis. I guess we can't rule out those alien landings after all Dad. But the interesting thing is it's never been used for more than "a test" except for one accidental slip up in the early 1970's. Wikipedia says, "Teletype operator W. S. Eberhardt accidentally 'played the wrong tape' during a test of the system. As a result, an EBS activation message authenticated with the codeword 'hatefulness' was sent through the entire system, ordering stations to cease regular programming and broadcast the alert of a national emergency. A cancellation message was sent at 9:59 AM EST; however, it used the same codeword again. A cancellation message with the correct codeword, 'impish,' was not sent until 10:13 AM EST." Uhh.. I don't know why they went with "hatefulness" as the codeword but if I saw that word flash on the screen during an actual emergency as a kid I probably would have had nightmares for weeks. But this still left me wondering what the point of it is. They didn't use it during 9/11 or during Hurricane Katrina, so what are they waiting for? Do they really need aliens to land?

What's the good news? This article informed me that I'm not alone! On the last blurb of the article it states under 'Purpose of the test and cultural impact': "The weekly broadcast of the EBS test message made it part of American cultural fabric of the era, and became the subject of all kinds of jokes and skits. Several people have testified about being frightened by the Test Pattern as children, and actual emergencies scared them even more." YES! Now I feel like less of a loser for being so afraid of this! (Oh really Will, you just said it still makes you uneasy, how about you get over it?) My research didn't stop there. I Googled "afraid of Emergency Broadcast System" and found message boards filled with posts about how people were scared of this as a kid. It's a scar that never fully healed and I still carry to this day. AND I KID YOU NOT - JUST FOUR MINUTES AFTER I FINISHED TYPING THAT SENTENCE AND SHUT THE LAPTOP SCREEN DOWN THE EMERGENCY BROADCAST SYSTEM CAME ON

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Answer me these questions three by Rod

The presidential election will be held on Tuesday, November 4. Whoever is elected will hopefully dedicate themselves to the task of running the country. Whatever their approach (don't get me wrong, hearing John McCain talk about the "surge" and honor and victory in Iraq gives me flashbacks to the American Nightmare in Vietnam), I'm hoping that the new president will have more character and intelligence then what I've seen for the last eight years. Having somebody- having anybody at the controls might slow this country's swirl down the drain.
In addition to voting for a new president, I'll also get the chance to vote on three -count 'em- three ballot questions, concerning cutting the state personal income tax, de-criminalizing marajuana and making it illegal to bet on dog racing.

Boils down to this, for me.

Question #1
Don't cut taxes. cut the waste and legal bribery. Hook our legislators up to lie detectors; abolish campaign contributions from lobby groups with tons of cash and the ability to influence politicians. I'm voting no.

Question #2
Hell, the government should regulate marajuana just like it does booze. Put it on the grid, sell it at Walmart, right next to the cigarettes. Why should sketchy little weasel drug dealers from the Bronx make illegal profit by selling to the 53% of baby boomers who smoke pot? I'm voting yes.

Question #3
Doesn't even bear discussion. Stop abusing animals for the benefit of gambling income. race fucking cockroaches, save the dogs. I'm voting yes.

Here's a useful link from the Massachusetts Secretary of State concerning these initiatives:
I'm planning on being a good citizen and sending along my opinion.

Monday, October 20, 2008

No one on the corna have swagga like T.I. By Jackie

You can have whatevaaaa you likeeee... (track 6) with T.I.'s new album that is ...
Well not whatever, but you get the idea.

I love T.I's new album, titled "Paper Trail." I am a fan of rap, but I usually don't go out and buy a new album; I wait until Alicia makes a mix and then steal it.

When I first popped this baby in, I looked and saw " Dead and Gone" f. Justin Timberlake , track 16 I believe. I would look at the CD to make sure, but I left it in the other room and don't feel like getting up. This song is real good, good beat, intense lyrics, all the works. As some of you may know, T.I.'s best friend was killed this past year and his GF had a miscarriage, plus he went to jail. BUMMER. He brings all these things up throughout the album. I got the vibe that he wants to make himself a better man and move on past this gangsta life. Then I heard "Every Chance I Get," in which he says

Hey I'm so raw / and I'm so rich
And you so flawed / niggaz ain't 'bout shit

I'll take yo' broad / I can fuck yo' bitch

Know that I'm gon' ball / every chance I get

Now, I know he wants to make himself a better man...but talking about fuckin other people's bitches and broads isn't going to make new friends!

Anyways, another really good song is called " My Life Your Entertainment" F. Usher. T.I. basically complains about the media and whatnot takin over his life. Hi you're rich, deal with the paparazzi. Good song though.

The entire album is sweeet and fun to listen to when you go for a little ... just roll the windows down and bop ya head. And don't forget to LIVE YA LIFE AYYY AYYY OOO OOOO! ( see track #5 f/Rihanna)

[Editor's note: Jackie wrote this drunk at 3:30 a.m. after her roommate's 21st birthday. You call it alcoholism; I call it dedication. - Alicia]

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I wanna know what his girlfriend knows by Alicia

He's earnin interest while he's sleepin, man, now who fucks wit him?

Jack and I recently went on a little bit of a shopping spree, and while on our consumer bender, we stumbled upon Nelly's new album, "Brass Knuckles." (We also got T.I.'s new "Paper Trail." Jackie will allegedly review it this week. Don't hold your breath.)

"Brass Knuckles" doesn't deviate from Nelly's standard formula: Fly beats, big name guest appearances, simple messages. And, as always, it works. Nelly doesn't get all deep, trying to tell us about all this complex emotional bull. I don't care about your psyche, Nelly. And he doesn't care to tell me. He's still singin' about sneakers, babes and cash. I like it!

Jack and I are huge fans of "Lie," featuring Nelly's crew, the St. Lunatics. In it, Nelly's chick accuses him of cheating and he denies it pretty believably. With a poppy backbeat. St. Lunatic Kyjuan raps,
Really don't know her, I seen her on MySpace / Looked at her page, all I seen was my face
Her username read "Kyjuan fo' life" / With videos and pictures, set up so right
The only bad thing is she writes me all night / Sayin shit like, "The 'Tics is so tight"
She ends with I love you, that starts the big fight / Baby, I can't control what she types
The St. Lunatics know how to identify with the social-client generation. On the other hand, in "Self Esteem," Nelly can't help but get a lil political:
They say I'm old enough to go to war / But I ain't old enough to play in the NBA no more
Now you tell me, what's wrong with that? / I pledge allegiance all the way to Iraq
But ain't nobody pledgin to me when I get back / Tell my Uncle Sam he wrong for that
The beat on this song isn't so great, but it's interesting to hear Nelly lyrically venture outside parties and relationships. Celeb appearances include Fergie, Snoop Dogg, Ashanti, T.I., and Pharrell. Among many others. Oh yeah, and can't forget L.L. Cool J. But let's look at something other than Nelly's rhymes. Let's look at ... his album jacket. I don't know where Nelly's been or what he's been up to since the last time I bought an album of his (2005's "Sweat/Suit," a double disc). But he looks so fine. He is JACKED. Nelly's always been sexy, especially since he took that Band-Aid off, but I would have dropped $13.99 on the album art alone.

See for yourself.


The only disappointment is "Stepped on My J'z," in which Nelly revisits the world of footwear with another rap about sneakers. It's a letdown after 2002's "Air Force Ones." ... But that's the worst I can say about the album. Nelly's forgiven anything with photos like that on the CD jacket.
Nelly delivers, as usual. This album is like a sugar fix -- you're down, you're craving a quick fix to pick you up. He's like a lollipop. Mmmm. Call me, Nelly.

Listen to:
Track 5. Lie f/St Lunatics
Track 10. Let It Go Lil Mama f/Pharrell
Track 13. Who Fucks Wit Me f/ Avery Storm

Buntologically Informed