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Archive for February, 2009

At the beginning of my blogging tenure here at GOTP, I wrote a post about how much the ending of Pretty in Pink sucked and how Andrew McCarthy’s character was one of the biggest douchenozzles ever to grace the screen.

andrewmccarthyno

Well today my friends, I feel completely vindicated since today, almost two months after my original post, popular movie site Cinematical has posted a very similar diatribe by one of their writers.

In your face, stupid Blane!

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It’s still pretty basic, but last night I put together the first version of the upcoming book club site!

bookclubscreen

Feel free to scoot around and check it out and if there’s anything missing or you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me at girlonthepark@gmail.com.

The club’s first title is being picked on Monday (I’ll post the info here and there so you can’t miss it) and March 31st will be our first online meeting, so I look forward to “seeing” some of you there.

Hooray book club!

Please note that late comers are always welcome to join as anyone who likes reading is okay in our book.*

*Yes I do know that was an incredibly corny thing to say, but I’m too excited to be mindful of puns right now.

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torontosubway

Okay so I wake up today and I head straight to the subway because I want to get to work early to get a jump on things for the day. For accuracy’s sake, let’s say it’s 8:10 am at this point.

The first train comes, and as usual I can’t get on,  so I wait for the second train. The second train is still crowded, but I’m able to get on standing and off we go. But we’re slow. Every stop we go to, we end up sitting at for like multiple minutes opening and closing the doors. The train gets more and more crowded to the point I can hardly breathe.

By the time we get to Dufferin station, I think we’re reaching a 10 minute high when they announce that the train is busted and we all have to get off.

Before I know it, I am pushed by a crushing throng on people onto the platform where it becomes abundantly clear that I will not be able to get on any train going Eastbound for a while.

So I make a command decision and I go back West because:

1) It’s better than impotently standing on the subway platform while train after unboardable train passes by.
2) It’s less squishy.
3) I’ll be able to sit.

I take the train backwards all the way to Runnymede (past the stop where I originally boarded) where I cross back over the platform and hop a train headed East again. I have a book and I have a seat and everything seems good as well pull into a tunnel . . .

But then we just sit there. Five minutes. Ten minutes. Fifteen minutes.
Finally, they make an announcement – yet another train has broken down Eastbound at Ossington so we are not moving.

Again, I don’t really care because I have a book and I am sitting, but as we are in a subway tunnel and I do not have a cell phone (and even if I did, I would not be able to get service instead such a concrete tube), I find myself worrying about work because I will most certainly be late.

I mull getting off the train and calling in from a payphone, but then I realize that if I disembark the train, it will be just as hard to get back on and making the call will only serve to slow me down, so I keep my head down and keep reading.

After an hour of ridiculous delays/herky-jerky travel, I finally get off the train and run through the rain to work.

When all is said and done, I stroll into the office after 9:30 and my 20 minute commute has taken me almost an hour and half, which makes me wonder:

1) How bad is my luck that I got stuck in such a logjam?
2) What kind of shape are the subways in if two of them in a row can breakdown like that?
3) What the hell is the TTC doing with my $109 a month?

Oh subway gods, what did I ever do to you?

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I cannot explain why, but somehow anytime I come across Clueless on TV, I have to watch it. It’s like 12 year old me takes over and will not cede control of the remote until Miss Geist’s (Mrs. Hall’s?) bouquet has been tossed and “Tenderness” by General Public plays*.

clueless(I hold this movie responsible for my multi-year crush on Paul Rudd** and for momentarily making a preteen me think that thigh high tights and skirts looked good together.)

I also have, for some reason, a weakness for cheesy action movies and in the last year have watched part, if not all, of Mimic at least three times.

mimic(For those of you who don’t remember this one, it features Mira Sorvino as a scientist who releases superbugs into the sewers to kill disease spreading cockroaches. Unfortunately, as tends to be the case when man tampers with nature, she unwittingly discovers years later that the superbugs have evolved and are now heartlessly murdering human beings in the subway. If you need a further tip off, it also features an autistic kid who plays the spoons and is way too interested in people’s shoes).

They’re not award winners by a long shot, but I have no doubt that in the next 12 months, I will fall prey to both of their charms at least once more.

So, to keep from feeling like I am the only one who gets sucked in by this kind of thing, I’ve got to ask : what movies will you/could you watch multiple times? Do you get pulled in by a certain genre? A certain actor?

Share your Sunday afternoon guilty pleasure flick with me! 🙂

*I actually wanted to play this song at my own wedding, but sadly, we could not find it on iTunes at the time.
** Well that and Wet Hot American Summer. “You taste like burger. I don’t like you anymore.”

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Recently, a federal appeals court smacked down a California law that would have made it illegal to rent or sell violent video games to anyone under the age of 18. This is hardly a new conversation, but it’s still an interesting one in that it’s easy to see both sides of the issue.

manhuntaxe

Looking at it from the pro-law side, it does make sense. Considering the subject matter, language and sexual content of some of today’s most popular games, having them made available to children seems like a mistake. I’m not a parent yet, but I don’t know if I’d be cool with my kid playing a game where they hacked someone to death with a chainsaw or have virtual sex with someone in a car. Plus, having heard the gamer mouth on my underage cousin, I’m not sure that I’d be particularly thrilled to have my own future spawn spouting off the word “motherf*cker” in casual conversation.

But there’s a lot to be said for the anti-law side too. I mean who among us didn’t see an R-Rated movie before we were legal age? Logically is this really something that is enforceable, and, were it to become illegal, would people really want their tax dollars to spent enforcing it?  Just the manpower and legal time alone would cost a hefty sum. Plus, it does feel a bit puritanical and could bring about a number of other similarly restrictive laws in the arts realm. If we’ve drawn the line on video games then what about music and books?

Appreciating both sides of the argument, I ultimately agree with the decision of the law makers in California. While I appreciate that the ESRB exists and is there to help nontechnologically saavy parents figure things out, I think that having a faceless institution make rules for everybody’s children on such a subjective issue is a mistake. At the end of the day, this is not a legal issue but an ethical one and each situation should be judged accordingly.

What say you, gamer peeps? Do you think the law is valid/a good idea or do you think it’s just another case of older lawmarkers who just don’t get it? Sound off below!

**The above picture is from the game Manhunt 2. Weirdly enough, a version of the game, which has players perform acts of violence on foes, was made for the Nintendo Wii (a system that’s target audience is children) and was only rated Adults Only after an advocacy group staged a massive letter writing campaign.**

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A couple of nights ago, Boy came to meet me downtown after work for some urban adventuring*.

When we came to the corner of Yonge and Queen, we were passed by a cube van that displayed the airbrushed name and logo of a King Street West Strip Club . . .

cubevan
It looked like this, but instead Bristol, imagine it said “For Your Eyes Only**” and displayed a large chested woman wearing sunglasses on it. 

Walking up Yonge, I couldn’t help but wonder what it contained or why a strip club would need an entire cube van.

Did they need to transport a metric tonne of pasties? Multiple cases of pole polish? Was its cube filled with troughs to be installed as a state of the art salad bar? Or maybe I was being too basic and the cube van was part of a new business venture. Just retrofit the cube part with a small bar, built in benches and couple of brass rails and voila! Mobile bachelor party***!

Anyway, we never did figure out what the cube van was for, but it did prove to be an entertaining conversation (and convinced me that, should this whole publishing thing not work out, I might have a career in the world of adult entertainment management. :-P)

*And he needed to finally buy some decent winter boots.
** Practically since I moved to Toronto, there has been a sign above this strip club advertising an apartment for rent. While I’m sure it’s possible that the apartment is in fine condition, I feel sympathy for the realtor because that’s got to be a tough sell to prospective residents. I mean how many people do you know who would want to time their entire life to the pulsating beat of “Pour Some Sugar On Me”?
*** Boy brought up the very good point that if the thing were on the road and hit a pothole, the girls could loose their balance, but I solved that problem by incorporating padded leopard print walls into the design.

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I’ve always like public transportation well enough (I ride it every morning), but I had never really cared about it before in any sort of aesthetic way until I saw this print from Zero Per Zero . . .

nyc-1

New York Subway System Art! You’ve got to give these guys some major points, because I have been inside one of the subway lines above when I last went to the Big Apple and I found them to be nowhere near as charming as this picture.

nyc-2

Anyway, here’s hoping the expand the series because I would love a Toronto map of my very own! 🙂

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