Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Various and Sundry Effluvia

I am going bald

I knew my hair was thinning, but it wasn't until Elden buzzed my head before Leadville that I realized that I'm headed the way of the billiard ball. Earlier in my life, going bald would have stressed me out. In fact, when my hairline changed at age 18, I purchased an expensive special shampoo and oil combination that fought the effects of male pattern baldness. And it worked!

Now, at the age of 46, I have a much more tempered world view. I understand that chicks will dig me even if I am bald.

Lance Armstrong to race the Tour de France

Here's why he wants to race again:

Then Leadville, this kind of obscure bike race, totally kick-started my engine. For me it's always been about the process.... The process of getting there is the best part. You start the season a little out of shape, a little heavy. You get in better shape. You lose some weight.

I mean you're just crafting this perfect program. For several weeks I [had] trained [for Leadville] and went riding by myself. Obviously beautiful territory and fresh air, just feeling fit, losing weight, getting strong-living a very healthy lifestyle. I thought, 'This might be fun to try again.'

Who does he think he is? How dare he call the Leadville 100 a "kind of obscure bike race"? I am so angry right now that I could snap a pencil in half. A mechanical pencil.

John McCain Might Be Our Next President

Because, you know, this Republican administration has messed things up, so it's time to replace them with a new Republican administration, a Republican for change! If we can just cut taxes and drill, drill, drill, we'll be back in the catbird seat in no time.

If you want to hit the moon, aim for the stars

When he grows up, Luke no longer wants to drive a cement mixer for a living. He wants to be a street sweeper.

Star Wars

When the boys and I watch shows, we all declare ourselves to be different characters. If The Backyardigans is on, I get to be Austen, Max is Uniqua, and Luke is Tyrone. If we watch Star Wars, Luke gets to be Luke Skywalker for obvious reasons, and Max -- this is not a joke -- gets to be Chewbacca. No, I don't know why.

Any fondness I had for the 1977 Star Wars is long gone. The dialogue is painful, Darth Vader is no longer compelling, and Luke Skywalker snivels. Still, the boys like it for the same reasons we did.

While the first Star Wars movie (excuse me, Episode IV) plummets in my estimation, the fourth movie (excuse me, Episode I) is much better than I recall. Since it's already a given that Jar Jar Binks is awful and the kid who plays the child Darth Vader is a terrible actor, the good scenes can stand out. And that fight scene between Darth Maul and the two Jedis is one of the best fight scenes in any movie.

I'd have to get my Top 5 staff back together to pinpoint its exact location in the hierarchy of fight scenes, but a preliminary stab goes like this:

1. Rocky Balboa vs. Apollo Creed
2. Darth Maul vs. Obi Wan and, um, Leam Neeson
3. Indiana Jones vs. The Shirtless Nazi
4. Danny LaRusso vs. Johnny Lawrence
5. Inigo Montoya vs. The Man in Black

Even though it doesn't qualify as a movie, Deadwood has one of my favorite fight scenes. When Dan Dority and Captain Turner square off, well, oh dear. Oh my. The showdown between King Arthur and the Black Knight also deserves special mention, along with the school hallway scene in Gross Pointe Blank and Boromir's death. A nod to Borat is also in order.


There is light at the end of the tunnel. There is blood in the water. I may soon begin updating this blog more than once a week.