Quotes of the Day.

We Americans live in a nation where the medical-care system is second to none in the world, unless you count maybe 25 or 30 little scuzzball countries like Scotland that we could vaporize in seconds if we felt like it.
- Dave Barry

If man does find the solution for world peace it will be the most revolutionary reversal of his record we have ever known.
- George C. Marshall


Turkey Break!

I will be taking a short (week long) break from blogging due to mass amounts of turkey consumption...

...and I'm still recovering from the depression of the Purple Jesus injury and the Steelers losing to the Jets.

The JETS?!?!? Really, guys?? WTF?

But I'm not a completely bad blogger, here for your entertainment while I'm away is the best Big Ben video game Ever... actually, it might be the only Big Ben video game, but yeah, it rocks. Thanks to Mondesi's House for the link and thanks to Doubt About It for making the video game. Hours of entertainment right here baby!


Cross Country Girls Are Tough Cookies!

I mean, just look at me! Yes, I ran cross country in high school, couldn't you tell by my hardiness?

Thanks to The Big Lead for this vid:

This is rather tremendous, and the unidentified girl may have a chance to enjoy 15 minutes of fame once her name becomes public: at about the 1:39 mark of this clip, you’ll notice a blonde Berkshire (Ohio) high school runner approaching the finish line at the State cross country meet recently. She takes a bad step and, according to the person who sent us this clip, broke her tibia and fibula. She crumbles to a heap on the ground, crawls for a bit and then pops back up in an attempt to reach the finish line. Only she collapses again (that fall is particularly cringe-worthy). At this point, she decides to crawl on her hands and knees for about the final eight yards to the finish line. Spectacular work, unidentified female. And kudos to our tipster for video.

Update: Through the power of the internet … we have more information. Fanhouse dug around and found out the girl’s name is Claire Markwardt (she’ll be getting a call from Matt Lauer any minute now), and she was supposed to be the maid of honor at her sister’s wedding that night.


The Vagina Monologues.

So I randomly bought the October issue of SELF magazine right before I went to Denver. I say randomly because I don't buy magazines ever and I've never read SELF. But this SELF issue had a huge piece on Breast Cancer, which I was really interested in, and had an article on Sarah Michelle Gellar, who played Buffy so of course I was all about that.

Now I don't read magazines much and so I'm just getting to the end of this issue when I find an article on women having cosmetic surgery on their genitals!! From injecting the mythical (and unproven) G-Spot with liquid similar to the lip injections (collagen) to make it more "plump" and sensitive (for about $1,850) to cosmetic labia reshaping, vaginal tightening, liposuction of the mons pubis and reduction of the skin around the clitoris, apparently this is all the rage now.

Here's a testimony from the article on the G-Spot injection:
"It's like having a mini-heartbeat in my crotch," she explains, a sensation that arouses her even during yoga and Spinning classes, or when she drives along bumpy roads. During sex, Staltare says, she has volcanic, multiple orgasms "like huge waves that keep lifting me higher and higher."
When confronted about the fact that it has not been scientifically proven that the "G-Spot" has any sexual powers, Dr. Matlock (from the E! channel show Dr. 90210 who routinely performs these sorts of procedures) asks "Does God exist?" You can hear the sound, scientific reasoning behind that response...

I can understand why a women would do the G-Spot injection if she was struggling to have an orgasm, I've known girls who have gotten their clitoris pierced for the same reason, but the price tag for the inject (which usually wears off in about four months) is a little steep to me, especially since you know insurance would never cover it.

But it's the vagina reshaping surgery that really baffles me. One young college student who had labia reshaping surgery states:
"I've never wanted my boobs done or any kind of plastic surgery, but my labia made me very uncomfortable."
The self-consciousness started, she says, when she noticed that her labia minora was longer than those of other girls. And then, of course, a boyfriend of hers made her aware of the labia reshaping surgery when she confided her labia insecurities to him. First of all, how the heck did she notice other girls' labia? I played a sport in high school (well, ran cross country), gone to the gym, changed in front of numerous girlfriends, even showered with a girlfriend once in a time pinch (and in a rather large shower, so don't get any ideas!), and I have not Once seen another girl's vagina or noticed her labia. The surgery for this girl deformed her labia more since they just sliced it and she was left with a whole lot of bleeding and with the labia unevenly cut at an angle. She ended up having to pay for more surgery to reconstruct her labia totaling her costs to nearly $14,000 out of pocket.

I'm completely aghast at this obsession for the "perfect vagina." I'm already quite disdained at the country's obsession with perfection and beauty, but this is literally taking it too far. Who decides what a "sexy" vagina looks like? The article states that doctors have treated patients for labia reshaping from the ages of 14 to 60! I personally think it should be consider neglect for parents to let their child get this surgery. A doctor states that he is helping these people because they're so self conscious that they won't wear a bathing suit at the beach. While I'm completely confused as to how a large labia would be obvious enough in a bathing suit to cause embarrassment, I'm extremely annoyed that young girls can just walk in and get this surgery with little difficulty. Even for Gastric Bypass there is an extensive psychological work done beforehand to make sure that it is a medical necessity and not just for looks or because someone doesn't feel like working the weight off. Now I know GB is a lot more intrusive than labia surgery, but labia surgery can definitely go wrong and can actually be so painful that sex is not possible or even desensitize the area so the woman has little to no sexual feeling left afterwards. Overall, there has been very little proof that these surgeries lead to long-term happiness in women or that there aren't any complications down the road, and mostly this proof has not been gathered because the doctors who are providing these procedures are unwilling to share their client list in order to conduct research on their effectiveness. Their reluctance is proof enough to me that this surgery is completely unnecessary and useless and the doctors know it.

I mean what else can women be made to be insecure about? I wouldn't say that I'm always happy with my body and I'm definitely not perfect. Hell, my boobs are completely different cup sizes! But has that ever bothered me or my husband? Other than bra shopping, not at all. And hey, if my husband had to pick my breasts out of a boob line-up, he'd know mine right away. Plus, I think he likes the variety. So why not take your "imperfections" and view them as unique special things about yourself instead of things that need to be fixed? Because frankly, once these women get their vagina surgery done I guarantee you they will find something else they hate about themselves in no time...

Gimme Some Of That PJ Action...

So on 11.05.2007 I blogged about the cool Purple Jesus tee from 289 except that they didn't have them in women's styles. Yesterday I received a comment on my blog for that post from the guys at 289 saying that they heard my request and have added women styles for the PJ tee (they are now at the bottom of the page). How freaking cool is that? I promptly ordered one and you should too. Right now. Come on, all the cool kids are doing it.

Seriously though, that is the best customer service EVER!


So Let's Talk Patriots.

Now that New England beat Indy and My Steelers had such a strong showing against Baltimore, the discussion has moved to the only team left on the schedule that even has a chance of beating the Patriots, according to the media at least. But even though the Steelers are in the discussion as the only team that could beat the Patriots, truthfully nobody's giving them a chance. New England is the "Golden" team (puke puke puke), infallible and unbeatable (well, except for the cheating and all that, but that's been quickly brushed aside by their crushing of every team in their path). Has anybody mentioned their fairly easy schedule with their incredibly easy division? The Patriots have squeezed into the playoffs many times due to their awful division and now they continue to benefit from it. But besides all that, the Steelers are already out of the picture as far as the playoff goes to the all-knowing sports experts since they are already talking about the Indy-New England rematch for the AFC Title. Well, all I can say is that Nobody, except for Steelers fans, thought that Pittsburgh would make it as the sixth seed to Super Bowl XL, and so I'm content with letting Pittsburgh fly under the radar again but boy will I be doing the biggest "I told you so" dance when they do make it to the Super Bowl... or at least when they beat the Patriots in Week 14.

Obviously this is a game Pittsburgh could lose, but it's also a game they could win and I'll tell you why. First of all, let's compare and contrast the Steelers to the Colts since they are the only team that has come close to beating the Patriots. Granted the Colts have a better offense than the Steelers when completely healthy, but their offense was minus Marvin Harrison and that brings their offense down a notch and considering that we've put up 222 points this year, I think it puts us close to the level of the Colts offensively (at least when they played New England). And our offense is more balanced then it has ever been. When Willie can't run, Ben puts up the TDs. Ben is second in the league with TDs (behind Brady) with 20 TDs and has three games in which he's scored 4 TDs. And when Willie can run, you know the boy can run! We're playing smart football with only 6 interceptions this year and have been clicking well offensively. So in the context of the Colts game against the Patriots this past week, let's call it close to even, you can even give the edge to the Colts just because of Peyton, though Ben's actually having a better year than Peyton.

Now here's where we can beat the Patriots, our Defense. Our Defense has been on fire this year and is unequivocally better than the Colts' D. Historically Brady doesn't play as well against 3-4 defenses. Why? Because he's a pocket passer. Yeah yeah, him and Peyton are the best QBs in the league, but only in the pocket. I'm not saying that they Never make plays outside of the pocket, but rarely and even when they do often it's by design and not forced (for example a Sprint Right play call). Brady can move vertically in the pocket, but not horizontally well and this is where Blitzburgh comes in. Playing the Ravens our Blitz got to McNair multiple times and resulted in four sacs and a couple fumbles. This was a healthy O-Line that is supposed to be one of the better Lines in the league. The Patriots' O-Line is top notch, no doubt, but we can get to Brady. And if we get to Brady he will throw interceptions, I can guarantee that. Our Run D's pretty good too - 4th in the league for rushing yards allowed.

Now let's talk about the guy I consider the best QB in the league outside of the pocket. Big Ben's escape abilities are become mythic and historically incredible. But even more incredible is his accuracy outside of the pocket. This is not a new thing with him. Ben had a better passer rating outside of the pocket than in it his rookie year and I think one of his problems last year was that due to his multiple injuries and health issues he was a lot more tentative to roll out of the pocket and scramble around. But now Ben Is Back. I will say that the Brady-Moss connection is far superior than anything we could offer, but our running game is stronger and our D matches up well against Brady and his offense. I will definitely give the edge to the Patriots on special teams, though Sepulveda has been a great punter for us this year, our returns and return coverage are average at best.

A couple of Steelers stats I pulled from Dave's Football Blog who in turn pulled them from MJD:

• 2nd in the league in rushing yards per game (behind only Minnesota, who received a sizable boost this weekend, courtesy of the San Diego Chargers)
• 1st in time of possession per game
• 1st in 3rd down conversion percentage
• 1st in the league in passing yards per game allowed
• 4th in rushing yards per game allowed
• T-2nd in the NFL in sacks
• 4th in the NFL in opposing QB passer rating

I won't say that it's a lock that we'll win this game because the Patriots are tough and have always been a tough competition for us, but I will say that we can definitely win this game and I personally believe we will.

Too bad we have to wait until Week 14 to find out!

Actually I'm more worried about the Jags game we have right after the Patriots because of how we match up against them...


The Otti Files.

So is he dead or isn't he? The controversy continues as Joseph Kony and the LRA adamantly deny that former deputy to Kony, Vincent Otti, is dead. Instead, they say that he has cholera, but I say former deputy because Kony has appointed a new deputy. Hmm, why appoint a new deputy if the current one is still alive? And the new deputy? The honorable Okot Odhiambo who is said to have commanded the LRA massacre in Barlonyo IDP camp in Lira district in February 2004, where over 300 people were burnt, shot and hacked to death. He also reportedly coordinated raids on civilians in Kitgum in March 2005. The New Vision

And why does this sound like a really bad idea to me? 450 people are to visit Kony in his secret hideout to consult with him and share their point of view. Yeah, okay, so this could turn out to be a good thing, no doubt, but I give a lot of props to those people who have been terrorized by the LRA for all these years to go into his secret camp to talk to him in order to build the trust for the peace talks. Me, personally? That'd scare the shit out of me.

And this is never good to hear... actually, I'm glad my mom doesn't read my blog much (if at all) because if she read this she'd never let me go out of the country for humanitarian work again. When I told her I wanted to goto Africa last year she hung up the phone on me. I can't even imagine what she'd have done if she'd read this article first. Lock me in her basement?

"I hate losing to the Steelers."

Okay, I Know I've posted this video on my blog before, but considering Deebo's recent coming out party, I just thought I'd post it again as a reminder of his badass tackle on one retarded/drunk Browns fan.

I think the Browns better get used to losing to us because I don't see that changing Anytime soon.

Thanks to Mondesi's House for bringing this vid back to my attention and for a great post on the Steelers!


Many of you may not have realized that today is Election Day. It is very important that you vote...

...So click here and here to vote for Adrian Peterson, click here to vote for Big Ben and click here to vote for James Harrison.

Thanks for contributing to this very important cause and making a difference!

Harrison (and The Steelers) Pound The Ravens. Literally.

So I had a very good (and drunken) night last night! Hubby and I went to a local bar known to lean towards the Steel Curtain side of life and watched the complete domination over the Ravens. So I definitely had a couple of beers and inhaled a ton of second hand smoke (ugh, gross!) and cheered a whole lot. I also think I went on a drunken text messaging and emailing rampage to just about everyone I know about how bad ass my Steelers are!! Apologies if you were a recipient of either, I really have no idea who I emailed or texted. I think I pretty much was just replying to whoever was in my Inbox.

No new news on Ben's hip injury. He definitely was limping a little at the end of the game when he was walking off the field, but it seems that Ben and Tomlin are being very quiet on the topic since hubs and I stayed up to watch the post-game interviews and neither were even asked about it! I'm guessing they made the topic off limits with the reporters. I'm hoping that it was just a stinger and nothing serious. The fact that he went out and played a series somewhat comforts me but not completely. Ben's strength is his ability to move out of the pocket and if he's limited in that way then that will definitely change how well he plays. Though I just have to say, if he needs to sit out a game then next week's the game to do it. Luckily we actually have an easy stretch coming up in which he can recover with the Browns, Jets and Miami on the docket, so he definitely has time to recover before the Patriots game, which is huge. I just hope he doesn't push himself to get back in too soon like he tends to do because we really need him for that Patriots game, while for the next three I think Batch will do just fine. And just a Miami Alum ranting side note, yeah, all those people who kept saying Ben just "manages" the game and doesn't have the arm or accuracy to be a truly great QB, eat it! In torrent sideways rain Ben made five TDs and a couple of them were purely out of Ben's effort of scrambling out of the pocket, shrugging off tackles and putting the ball perfectly in his receiver's hands. I think he looked like a pretty elite QB last night, and pretty much this whole season for the matter. And I like how people like to point out that he played badly during the Super Bowl but totally forget how well he played in the playoffs and how he pretty much carried the team through the playoffs. Okay, rant over.

Oh, and Joey Who? Yeah, I think the Steelers continue to prove that they know Exactly when to let a player go. James Harrison (nicknamed Deebo and Silverback by his teammates) was seriously amazing last night! Just to put it in perspective, here are his stats for the game: 9 Tackles, 3.5 Sacks, 3 Force Fumbles, 1 Fumble Recovery, 1 Interception. And beyond that, he's been having a good year, so he's no one-hit-wonder here. Statistically he's our best Defensive player right now leading in Tackles, Sacks and Fumble Recoveries, and is within the top five for Assists and Interceptions.

Isn't it funny that they have the Steelers vs. Miami game on MNF in a couple of weeks? I guess they thought Joey Porter coming back to Pittsburgh would be big drama, but now that MNF game is looking to be pretty lame to all football fans but Steelers fans.

Update: I guess some reporters did ask about Ben's injury in the post-game interview with Tomlin, but for some strange reason it didn't make the TV clips on NFL Network. Here's what he said (basically exactly what Hubby and I thought almost word for word):

(Reporter) How is Roethlisberger after being in injured at the 6:04 mark of the third quarter?

(Tomlin) I think he’s going to be fine. I know that you guys need some information in that regard, so I will speculate. At this point, it’s a hip pointer. I think that’s all it is, of course we will confirm in the morning.

(Reporter) Why did you put him back in the game?

(Tomlin) So you wouldn’t ask me as many questions. No, he was fine after the initial pain subsided and we identified what we thought it was. He was fine to go back in the game. He felt strongly about it. He is persuasive.

That Big Ben is pretty persuasive and determined to play whenever he can. Seriously, Hubby said that he bet Ben persuaded Tomlin to get back in as soon as we saw him jog out onto the field!

Overall I rate this football weekend an A+++++++. With Purple Jesus, Big Ben, Deebo, some hard hitting Hines Ward blocks (especially the one on Ed Reed) and week high in my Fantasy Football league (for the second week in a row) I'm living good in the football world.


MNF: Steelers vs. Ravens

Be There...
...Or Be Square.

Purple Jesus Has Arisen.

I found some "Purple Jesus" apparel online thanks to Deadspin. Too bad they only have them in mens sizes, these t-shirts are pretty sweet ass, I'd probably have to buy one if they made one for women! Yeah, Vikings Nation is pretty much going nuts right now if you couldn't tell. We haven't had much to be excited about for years, so we're pretty much jumping all over this one.

Also got this "casual pose" Adrian Peterson pic from Deadspin. Is that a spaghetti strap tank underneath that zip up hoodie, PJ? Whatev, you're the Purple Jesus, you can wear whatever the hell you want! All the better to see your bulging muscles in that spaghetti strap tank after all...

Here's a video highlighting some of PJ's bombdiggity record breaking day:


BTVS - The Long Way Home: A Review

Buffy the Vampire Slayer - The Long Way Home by Joss Whedon is the continuation of the TV series in comic book form. The consequences of what Buffy and Willow did, activating all of the potentials slayers, are now being recognized as they are rounding up the newly realized slayers, and dealing with the backlash from those who are unhappy by this new superhuman race of girls.

Whedon stays true to his characters through and through, and brings in some old characters thought to be gone just for fun (although there is one little loop hole he admits to forgetting about when bringing one of them back). Buffy is overwhelmed by her new position as Leader of the Slayers, is lonely and desperately horny (poor girl!) Xander is still quirky, funny Xander, except now he is a Watcher/Sergeant of the Slayers, and he looks pretty bad ass with that eye patch. Dawn's going through some "growing pains" as all the book descriptions like to cutely put it and Willow is still a pretty wicked Wicca. The arc is great and is left unfinished, making you look forward to its continuation and the TPB also includes a standalone of one of the newly activated Slayers that was pretty cool.

While I think they might be pushing Buffy a little further than they would have in TV format with the whole menage-a-trois dream sequence, I think the stories fall in line pretty well with the flavor of the TV show (they did have the whole Spike throw down sex in the TV show after all...) It's good to see the old characters come alive again, after being a fan of the show since high school it feels like seeing old friends again!

I really loved this Buffy comic and can't wait to read the Faith arc, which is in the next couple of issues and sadly not in TPB yet. I've heard great things about them. Are you sick of vampires yet from all my reviews? I'm not!


30 Days of Night: A Review

30 Days of Night by Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith is a dark, unforgiving and gruesome vampire story. The story takes place in Burrow, Alaska where the small town is preparing for 30 days of night, and secretly the vampires are preparing for it too. Such a simple idea that has never been explored before (at least to my knowledge), vampires taking advantage of the lack of sun in Alaska by having an all out feed-fest.

I absolutely love the art, it's dark and reminds me of the art in the Sandman series. While the story was good with some nice plot twists, it's the art the truly makes this comic great. It is absolutely gruesome at times, and yet subtle at other. The use of color and of blending colors is just perfectly done. My only complaint is that I wish I'd had a chance to get to know the characters better. I felt that the character developing was sacrificed in order to build up the horror element of the story. This is actually one area that I think the movie did better in than the book. However, this does tempt me into buying the second book of the series since I know Stella is in it, so maybe that was intentional.

A very dark and gooey Halloweeny read!


Fray: A Review

Fray is Joss Whedon's future slayer. It's an eight-issue limited series comic book set about 200 plus years into the future. Demons had been cast out of the world by a slayer and her mystical companions in the 21st century, but now vampires are coming back and a new slayer must be called. Meet Melaka Fray, a street hardened thief. With some absolutely beautiful art by Karl Moline and a very well crafted story by Whedon, we have Fray.

Melaka has the hard edge of Faith, but the likable compassion of Buffy. She's gorgeous, tough and lives by her own rules, but she has her vulnerabilities. With a demon to replace her Watcher, Melaka grows into her slayer shoes and fights the vampires, which she always grew up calling "lurks." Bringing you some absolutely unforgettable characters (I love Loo!) and an edgy setting, Whedon brings you a good story that seems to end all too quickly. I was frustrated after finishing the TPB and not finding any evidence for future Fray projects, but just recently Whedon has said that Fray is not done! (See the video two posts below.) I really hope they bring her back because there is obviously more story to be told with Fray.

I hate to ruin any plot, so that's all I'll say, but for any comic book reader it's a great read, but for Buffy fans, it's a must read!


I Heart Adrian Peterson.

Not only am I feeling the Offensive Rookie of the Year award going to my man A. Peterson, but I think he'll easily be in the running for Offensive Player of the year period.

As a rookie, not only is he leading in rushing yards with a total 1036 rushing yards, but he also has already broken the record for total yards rushed in a single game by rushing for 296 yards with 3 TDs against the San Diego Chargers in the Vikings' stunning win over them today! I was loving him before, but now he has a little shrine in the corner of my room... okay, so not really, but I damn well better be getting his jersey for Christmas this year, ladies cut, size small (hint hint, hubs). In addition to his amazing big play ability, Peterson already has the rep among his teammates as a hard worker, a team player, and a genuinely down-to-earth nice guy. What's not to love?

Beyond Adrian Peterson's amazing ability, the Minnesota's D, which is well known for being able to stop the run (I think they were second in the league against the run), they were also well known for being dead last against the pass. However, today they stepped it up, forcing one of Philip Rivers' worst games of the season so far. Our D limited the Chargers to converting only 25 percent of their third downs (4-for-16) and on average maintained about ten minutes time of possession over them.

I'm so ridiculously excited about this win. Yes, I know that the Vikes or 3-5 and not really in a great position in their Division with the Packers at 7-1 and the Lions at 6-2. But a win against the Chargers, a solid team on both sides of the ball, while they were hot (winning their last three games) is huge for the confidence of our team. I am worried about T. Jack though, the hit he took was nasty, and although he's going through some growing pains I obviously prefer him to Bollinger and Holcomb. I really think Jackson has a huge upside, he throws rockets, is mobile and is pretty accurate, especially with the short passes which fits the West Coast Offense that the Vikes like to run. Our WRs often make Jackson look worse than he is, dropping passes they should catch, which has been a problem with the Vikings for a while. Rice and Shiancoe are starting to come up big for us though, so I'm hoping they can keep it up and that T. Jack isn't seriously injured. I did see him on the sidelines after that nasty hit, which is good news.

I'm not completely off my rocker though. No, I don't think the Vikings are going to the Super Bowl or anything like that. I actually think it's a long shot for them to make the Play Offs, and I know better as a long time Vikings fans to get too hopeful about this win because the Vikings have a tendency to lose games their expected to win and to win games nobody, not even Vikings fans (yes, I did pick against them this week), expects them to win.

But the win still feels goooood.

As a side note, I don't know if I've ever mentioned it before, but boy do I hate intellectual snobs. In my job as a social worker, most of my co-workers have college degrees, and many have graduate degrees. In a meeting on Friday a high level director (with a MSW) was talking about how she was listening to NPR that morning when it cut out and this sports show cut in and how she could feel her IQ dropping as they talked. Now I'll listen to NPR but I also listen to sports shows and not being able to not voice my opinion I immediately turned to her and said, "Oh, have I mentioned to you yet that I'm a Huge sports fan?" And she just shrugged and said, "I just don't get it." It's totally fine if someone doesn't like sports, but to be such a intellectual snob about it like "I'm too smart for sports" is just fricking retarded. Sports and competition has been inherent in human beings since the beginning of time and to act like it is below you is acting like you're above being human, which is just retarded. The fact that so many people all around the world are completely pulled to and obsessed with sports means that it has power, and to dismiss it and not recognize the power is more unintelligent than any sports watcher I know.

Sorry, had to vent a little, as a huge sports fan and all, I guess I can't just intellectualize my annoyance away.


It's a Vampire Weekend!

Not only did my Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 8 trade paperback arrive in the mail today (I've been waiting forever it seems for these comic books to come out in TPB) but I also finally went to see the movie based on the 30 Days of Night graphic novel.

I wasn't sure about the movie from the previews... first of all, as a rule, I'm not the biggest Josh Hartnett fan. He has always seemed like a pretty face with less than average acting skills to me. However, he does well in this movie and I was impressed with the directing and filming of the movie. It keeps that dark artful element that the graphic novels have and adds a little bit of meat to the plot. It is definitely a graphic and gruesome movie, but the plot has its twists and the set up for the story was great. Even though I knew what happened in the end, I was still scared, shocked, and I even had some tears in my eyes for the ending. Yes, I'm a complete sap crying at the end of a "horror" movie, but it really was well done with the character build up and with the pace of the plot. I was really happy about it. I realize I have yet to write a review on the graphic novel! Shame on me. I'll definitely catch up on that this weekend.

You'll probably be getting a ton of Vampire graphic novel reviews this weekend actually as I still have to review Joss Whedon's futuristic slayer comic book Fray and I also have another Buffy spin-off comic partly written and supervised by Whedon, Tales of the Vampires to read and then review.

I'll be reading Buffy Season 8 as well this weekend as I recoup from this nagging sickness. A very Vampirey after-Halloween weekend!

FYI - for any other Buffy fanatics, which naturally leads to Angel fanatics, due to the success of the Buffy Season 8 series, Whedon has been involved with plotting out an Angel Season 6 comic book series, starting out right where Season 5 left off. It's being plotted by Whedon but written by Brian Lynch and is slated to come out with its first issue November 28, 2007. They'd better get these in TPBs too since I'm not one to goto comic book stores and get actual issues, I'm a book girl through and through, and that includes when reading comic books.

PS - A great video interview of genius Buffy creator Joss Whedon...

And I might be tempted to start buying Angel Season 6 and Buffy Season 8 single issues because the first five issues of Buffy Season 8 were so frickin' good! Though I hate to start buying single issues because I know I'll still have to buy the TPBs when those come out so it does seem like a waste of money, but I might not be able to help myself. Already started researching local comic book stores...


Indie Rock.

When I first heard of Indie Rock, way back in college, I had thought it was short for "Indian" Rock because at the time there was this popular Indian rapish-rockish song out. I thought the song was okay, it got annoying after a while and I was baffled to hear that there was this huge underground following for "Indie" Rock. When I finally found out that it was "Indie" Rock for "Independent" Rock first I felt like a complete retard and then I was really interested. Since then I've dived into the genre with the help of my Sirius radio which makes Indie Rock extremely accessible. I know that the popularity of Indie Rock has been steadily growing, even to the point that some Indie Rock bands are getting popular and hitting mainstream markets, so I thought I'd introduce it to those out there who are wondering why Indian music suddenly got so popular!

Indie Rock is so appealing to many because it tends to be more unique and creative, not being stifled or controlled by a huge recording company. It's refreshing to hear some actually new music rather than the same song recycled over and over again as Pop music or even mainstream Alternative music tends to do. Indie Rock has become so popular that there are even rumors that a popular Indie band, The Kooks, were manufactured by a major UK Recording Label in order to capitalize on the recent Indie Rock craze.

So if you are just getting into Indie Rock, let me nudge you in the right direction, which of course are my faves:

  • TV on the Radio - This band has quickly become one of my faves. The lead singer is originally from Nigeria, and you can hear the African background in the music. The song I first fell in love with is "A Method." It just sends chills down my spine. Their music is very experimental and creative, mixing rock, electric, jazz among other music genres in a way that is very pleasing to the ears, at least to me.
  • Blonde Redhead - I'm completely obsessed with their song "Spring and by Summer Fall" which is a completely awkward name that I can never remember correctly, but there is this one guitar rift (I'm probably using that term so completely wrong) that literally tugs at your innards. I can't even explain it in words, but it's really profound. Overall, their music has an eerie kind of rock flavor going on.
  • Sea Wolf - An up-and-coming Indie band. I'm not sure if they really even have a full album out, they might just have an EP. Actually "Sea Wolf" is the stage name for Alex Church with a rotating ensemble of musicians to make up his band. The current single out, "You're a Wolf" has a very unique sound that incorporates I believe a cello in it. I really like this band a lot and am pissed to find out that I just missed them in Carrboro, NC last night!!
Let me know what you think!

And if you didn't already know, Radiohead is at the forefront of innovative merchandising, making their newest release available only from a specific website and the price? Well you can order the "Discbox" which includes extra materials in addition to the album for about $80, or you can download a digital version for... whatever you want. Yup, you heard me, you decide how much you want to pay for the download. To test it out, and sure, I might be a bit stingy with money, but this was for experimental purposes mostly I swear, I said that I chose to pay zero for the album and website said okee dokee and downloaded the album right to my computer! Radiohead has been one of the more unique and interesting bands of the past, but they've really pushed the envelope by not even having a recording label! Talk about Indie Rock. Many record companies are very nervous by this new idea, and they should be. It's fucking brilliant. To read more about it, check out this article. And for those music/techy/computer geeks (I don't even know what category this falls under) read this article about some controversies about the It's Up To You/Free download.


With his permission, I'm posting a speech that Jimmy Otim was asked to give on Northern Uganda. Jimmy was one of the amazing persons I met while in Uganda who was actively working in his community of Gulu (where much of the war has taken place) to help the people affected by the war. I'm posting his speech word for word as he emailed it to me and posting his contact information at the end per Jimmy's request. Please feel free to contact him with any questions or to see how you can help! I know I found his words powerful and moving, I hope you will too.


I am Jimmy Otim, a writer and a researcher who has worked for several humanitarian organisations trying to quell the violence in northern Uganda, my native country.

I was born, grew up and now working in northern Uganda trying to make a contribution to the lives of the innocent civilian population living in the internally displaced people’s camps in this beautiful but trouble land.

As a background, the 21 year old conflict in northern Uganda could be rated as one of the worst areas of human right violations in the world history with over 300,000 people dead in Acholi sub region alone, 1.6 million displaced and living in squalid conditions and over 30,000 abductions recorded so far. The conflict has caused unspeakable suffering to the people of northern Uganda where civilians have become the principle strategic targets and victims of violence, a field upon which the conflict is fought and through which victory is sought. The conflict has interrupted the functions of every institution and left the region in ruins.

Unfortunately, many people are unconcerned about the war in northern Uganda. This attitude of many was captured by many utterances like “these people are fighting themselves”. Yes the war in northern Uganda is seen as a thing which should not concern us and unfortunately it also evokes sad memories of their own kind in many people’s mind.

My messages depart from other usual academic or political statements by individuals who always wish to theorised or win political support. It should provoke practical debate among the pundits of our time with the hope that many generations to come will not only live in peace and prosperous world. But a world with international concern which we currently lack. My message focuses on not who is wrong or right. It’s about people’s right to a decent life unmolested by the guns of war. In a sense, it is about whether we as people of the world have any human compassion left in us or whether we shall continue living like animals uncaring about the sanctity of life.

I personally believe that what is happening in northern Uganda is not our own fault. We are victims of selfish interests and in that sense everybody is guilty – our own communities as well as the international community. Sadly this tragedy going on in northern Uganda is behind the glare of the world.

I see northern Uganda being slowly transformed into a wilderness, I hear the approaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too, and I feel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for the better that this cruelty too shall end, that peace and tranquillity will return once more.

In the meantime, I must hold on to my ideals. Perhaps the day will come when we will be able to realise them.

Together we can all do something to change the situation; how can we help?

Advocate for the people in northern Uganda (victims)
Stimulate dialogue
Provide technical assistance
Facilitate access to resources
Join the network
Support the Victims
Or at least pray

P O BOX 1177,
TEL : +256782366380
EMAIL : otimjimmy@yahoo.co.uk

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