A fairly basic meatloaf


  • Two one-bound tubes of cheap ground turkey from the 99 Cents Only store
  • One container of brown rice left over from Sunday’s Pick-Up Stix takeout
  • Some leftover peas
  • Some raisins (also from 99 Cents Only)
  • One medium egg (again, 99 Cents Only)
  • Whatever was left of the Trader Joe’s Marinara sauce (quite low sodium) – not very much

Result: nothing genius, but quite edible, no problems, generally quite good considering the cheap, probably mechanically-separate turkey and the lack of a sodiumy sauce. No complaints. Well, Ben did throw some, but that’s the Benster.

  • Whatever was left of some mild salsa – not very much
Published in: on October 28, 2010 at 8:10 pm  Leave a Comment  


I like me some Sherlock Holmes. I like the pure goods, the straight Conan Doyle, but I also spent a while digging into other authors’ takes on the character. I’ve read the Misadventures, the Solar Pons, an adventure of Mrs. Hudson, Sherlock reset in the punk scene, all kinds of takes.

Not so much recently, mind you, but these days, I’ll gladly take in the alternate takes on screen. I rather liked Zero Effect (I hope I get a legal chance to view the unaired TV version at some point). The recent Sherlock Holmes movie wasn’t a good movie overall, but the interpretation of the characters was a legitimate if clearly alternative take.

PBS is running the BBC’s Sherlock on its Masterpiece Myteries show, and this is a fun one to watch. It resets Holmes in modern day, jettisoning almost all of the standard imagery (which one kind of has to do; those old films where Holmes fought the Nazis are kind of painful). In the new version, Holmes is a fairly young man who quite embraces modern tech – largely seen through heavy texting (which makes sense) and repeated statements that Sherlock has a web page (which doesn’t seem right). They embrace him as someone who is crazed for investigation, understand him as an extreme character, and it works. I’m unfamiliar with the actor who plays him, but he reminded me in slight ways of Jim Hutton, the actor who played TV’s genial take on Ellery Queen.

Watson is a guy on the edge; he’s a veteran of Afghanistan who is numbed in the present world, a seemingly button-down guy who actually needs the excitement. Paired with Holmes, they are extreme folks in a world which needs them but does not fit them.

There is definitely some fun stuff here for the Holmes buff, for the folks who will recognize how they take a clue from the original A Study in Scarlet and flip it upside-down.  Some of this is taken to a silly level at times, but it’s well worth watching for the serious Holmes watcher. I’ll leave it to someone else to judge if it is worth it for the Holmes first-timer (although I suspect that those people should find Holmes by reading the pure material.)

Published in: on October 27, 2010 at 8:48 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Whole Truth

Having seen that The Whole Truth has been canceled, I reckoned it was time that I finally check it out… which is not the only logic I ever go with. After all, if I hate a show that’s canceled, why bother – and if I love it, ach, the pain!

This one doesn’t hit either extreme. It features a couple actors who have positive associations for me, but not for their most recent runs (Rob Morrow to me is the Northern Exposure guy, as I gave up on Num3ers; Maura Tierney is NewsRadio, not E/R.) The basic concept is that we see both the defense and prosecution investigation into a crime, see it go through the court… and in the end, we see the truth of what actually happened. It’s a good concept… but for a British series, something where there’s a handful of short seasons, so that they don’t make it feel like they’ve run through every combination and permutations and are desperate not to make it feel redundant. That would also give them less of a need to build some ongoing story (or, if they choose to do ongoing story, they can actually move it somewhere; this feels like it’s full of romantic-tension hovering.) Plus, it would give you less reminder that there seems to be just one prosecutor and one defender in this world, endlessly pitted against one another.

Having said that, almost everything I’ve said above can be said about House; however, House triumphs over its obstacles via greatness of individual aspects, none of which is achieved here. Dr. House himself is fun to watch (from a distance); there is no such degree of character here. This is a procedural where the interest is supposed to bein the procedure, and it isn’t convincing enough to go “wow”… nor stupid enough to simply write this off as drek.

It’s so-so, and thus its death is not a tragedy.

Published in: on October 27, 2010 at 8:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Today’s game: All-Star SNL

Many SNL guest hosts do fine doing just what you’d expect them to do – but every once in a while there’s one who proves to have more range and quality than you expect, one who would fit solidly in as a cast member.

I was sitting her thinking who I would put on an “all-star” SNL cast, built entirely out of guest hosts, specifically those who surprised with their ability to fit in. So no Steve Martin here, and certainly no former-SNLers who return to host. At this point, I’ve got a base of Justin Timberlake, The Rock, and Alec Baldwin (it may be hard to remember that he was seen as solely a dramatic actor back when).

Any suggestions?

Published in: on October 15, 2010 at 5:14 am  Leave a Comment  

One other good thing about the Google-driven cars

When taking a trip along the Snake River Canyon, you’ll really appreciate their corporate motto, “Don’t Be Evel.”

Published in: on October 14, 2010 at 4:46 am  Leave a Comment  

Time passes in Springfield

For decades, time has not passed in the Simpsons’ land of Springfield. Oh, a couple characters died, and the Van Houtens got a divorce, but no one has aged. Until this week.

Baseball’s Mike Scioscia, who had appeared in the episode “Homer at the Bat” back in 1992, showed up again this week… and he had aged. He had changed visually, he had moved on in his career, and it wasn’t a case of him being coincidentally another Mike Scioscia, as the events from his previous appearance were referred to. So somehow he’s gotten 18.5 years older… while Bart remains ten.

Published in: on October 12, 2010 at 1:14 pm  Leave a Comment  

Google car interface

Google has been testing cars that drive themselves. That is the future I’ve been demanding, and will do much for safety and fuel efficiency.

But here’s what I expect from a Google interface for your car:

  • You will be able to invite up to 50 friends to get into your car with you.
  • At turnpike entrances, you’ll have to choose between the Speedpass lane and the Google Checkout lane.
  • Your car will start heading off from the moment you start saying your destination, zooming you towards San Diego before you can get to the “Luis Obispo” part of your goal.
  • At first, it will refuse to take you to locations similar to ones you’ve already visited.
  • You will have to turn off Moderate Safe Search in order to be taken to the Gaylord Texan Resort or the Butt-Holdsworth Memorial Library.
  • Or you can just climb in the car and say “I feel lucky!”

I am looking forward to Google-driven cars, to replace all those Yahoo-driven vehicles already on the road.

Published in: on October 11, 2010 at 4:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

Law & Order: Los Angeles

One episode of Law & Order: Los Angeles showed me a tale that was convoluted without being complex, stylized without being interesting, and had respectable actors without respectable acting. Another cubic foot of police procedural to fill the airwaves, but no more to fill my screen.

Published in: on October 10, 2010 at 6:45 am  Leave a Comment  

A decade ago today…

…in front of a crowd on the lawn of a shabby mansion, amidst metal palm trees and with the delicate notes of La Cucaracha wafting in from someone’s car horn, a certain lady became Mrs. Nat’s TV. Congratulate her on her endurance in putting up with me for 10 years.

Published in: on October 7, 2010 at 12:42 pm  Leave a Comment  

Losing sleep the world around

Back in 2004, I founded an annual international festival of comics creation, 24 Hour Comics Day.  It honestly wasn’t that international at first… but now? I love seeing photos from Singapore, from Indonesia, from Nigeria of people who all chose to forego sleep to make comics. It’s one of those things that reminds me that people are more the same than they are different.

(Yes, I did take part. Still recovering. Not sure I’ll post my results…)

Published in: on October 4, 2010 at 7:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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