Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Weekend Randoms

1. Probably one of the best weekends for college basketball in recent memory, and certainly a cardiac-inspired one for anyone with gambling (err, for entertainment purposes) interests at stake. Personally, I had Illinois, North Carolina and Kentucky in my Final Four, and while I didn’t have West Virginia, a Mountaineer win would have helped the cause. So, in the end, two-for-four keeps me alive for the money, but more than that, the games themselves were so rewarding. That Illinois comeback was something I doubt I’ll see again for awhile, that’s for sure.

I did come away from the weekend wondering if anyone can run a “last shot” play anymore. I didn’t think anyone would be able to screw up a last shot worse than Arizona did at the end of overtime, but there I was a day later, watching Kentucky get 25 seconds to win the game and NOT EVEN GET A SHOT OFF. Yeah, I really could have used that win.

2. Watched the pilot for “Grey’s Anatomy” on Sunday. I’m usually not a huge fan of medical shows, but I really liked the “Grey” cast, especially Sandra Oh, Patrick Dempsey and my heterosexual “Roswell” girlfriend, Katherine Heigl. I thought I liked Ellen Pompeo as well, but as it turns out . . . not so much.

The show was kind of boring and meandering, but I’m willing to give it at least one more shot. Sandra Oh is really good and I liked the kid who played George. Pompeo disappointed me, though. It’s funny, because I read Bill Simmons on ESPN.com today and he was raving about her and her likeability. I felt the opposite – not until the very end with her mom did she really get me into her story. And she’s got a squinty Zellweger thing that is starting to bug me.

Oh, and Heigl was completely buried, which sucks. And her character’s name is Isabel, which certainly makes things easier to remember. They mucked it up by nicknaming her “Izzie” (scriptwriter’s shorthand for “blonde” “young” and “ditzy”). This show gets one more shot to make things interesting. They’re just lucky the “Carnivale” season ended.

3. Started reading a collection of David Sedaris short stories (“Barrel Fever”). I think it took me five minutes before my first audible “oh my god”. Just a wicked sense of humor, that guy. More complete review to come, but for now I’ll just toss out an easy recommendation if you’re looking for heartless laughs at absurd people.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Egghead Loves His Booky-Wook

So in my little mission statement I neglected to mention just why I thought that reading more was such an essential goal. For whatever reason, a few weeks ago, I attempted to write down the titles of all the books I've ever read in my adult life. Now, I'm sure I missed a handful of titles that I read for scholastic purposes (and there's no way I was adding "Ragged Dick" to the list considering I barely skimmed that thing), but the upshot was that I could not fill up one page of notebook paper. That single solitary unfilled piece of paper looked back at me, poking me in the sternum all "and you thought you were sooooo smart, didn't you?"

And the thing is, I like to read. It's calming, it's interesting, it's good for conversation. I just clearly haven't done it enough. And there are too many books that I've been meaning to read, piling up in the back of my mind, neglected and dusty.

Thus, my newfound resolution and this here blog.

I've already gotten myself a bit of a head start with the following books . . .

RUNNING WITH SCISSORS and DRY by Augusten Burroughs. The first a memoir of Burroughs' deeply insane childhood, the second an account of his adult battle with alcoholism and rehab. Both were funny - the first one hilariously so - mostly because they allow you to stand by and observe his life as if it where a trainwreck, but with Burroughs right by your side providing this biting commentary. As a character, he's a lot more likeable in SCISSORS but I actually found him more endearing in DRY. I think I was admiring his ability to be so aware of his own shortcomings.

SEX, DRUGS AND COCOA PUFFS by Chuck Klosterman. Very interesting, and a hell of a quick read. Klosterman delves into a seemingly random handful of pop culture subjects, from Internet porn to Saved By The Bell, and weaves each one into the greater fabric of the American collective unconscious. It's all thought provoking, and I can't imagine anyone who can't realte to most of it. I did get the feeling that I wouldn't be able to put up with Klosterman for more than three minutes at a party, though. I'd bring up last night's "Apprentice" and he'd spend the next forty-five minutes trying to explain to me what Donald Trump's renaissance says about us as a nation. Still, the 23 Questions mini-chapter in the middle of the book is fantastic, and an excellent party game.

So, okay, there's your primer on my Must Read Books thing. I'll get into the baseball thing once the season starts.

Happy weekend and Happy Easter, y'all.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

It Begins.

So . . . for real. I'm going to start this Blog thing that the kids keep talking about. I've done the online journal thing before, but without a loose theme to tie everything around, it felt aimless. Thus, with the emphasis on a loose theme, I wound up creating Low Resolution.

Now, a bit of fair warning about me: I'm unusually succesptible to puns. It's a weakness, I know. In this case, Low Resolution refers to my pseudo "New Year's" resolution to do two things better: 1) read more books, and 2) watch more baseball. Oh yeah. Reaching for the stars, am I.

So here's where you'll find me alternately ranting about the Yankees middle relief issues and laughing my fool head off at the pearl-clutching of Tom Wolfe in "I Am Charlotte Simmons" (more on that in a week or so).

Of course, that's not going to keep me from my usual Film/Television/Pop Culture commentary. My odd newfound affinity for "American Idol" needs an outlet, after all.

So come, stay, read, comment. Who says self-improvement has to be a slog?