Saturday, 17 May 2003: I can't remember if I mentioned this previously or not, but here goes anyway. A few months back, Katie and I received a notice in the mail claiming that we had several thousand airmiles saved up through our U.S. Airways frequent flier plan and they asked us to spend the miles on magazines. Well, we've never had a U.S. Airways miles plan so we figured it was a joke or some marketing scheme or just some outright mistake. Apparently, my parents have received the same mailer and have received magazines condition free. Well, I read it carefully and, when it said that I don't need to provide any credit card information, I decided to sign up for it. So now Katie and I have a ton of magazines sitting around.
This weekend, I decided to catch up on the last month's worth of magazines and I came across a pretty interesting blurb in either Time or Newsweek. The article dealt with measures that the U.S. Government is enacting to ensure our domestic safety. Stuff like being able to monitor what we check out of libraries and what we buy at bookstores. They even wanted to force Internet Service Providers to hand over records of their users. I believe, if I read correctly, that idea was shot down.
But one that is a reality that scares the hell out of me is that of a "no fly list." This is a list of people that is maintained by the government that are open in their opposition to the U.S. Government and their foreign policies (read "War in Iraq"). It seems that a couple were detained at the San Francisco International Airport before they were to fly off somewhere else in the States and were questioned.
Now, I realize that my opposition on this webpage is pretty minimal and that I'm a tiny friggin' fish in a big old pond. And, really, just how big is my readership? Like 3 or 4 regular readers, maybe? But, the concept of this scares me especially since I'm supposed to be flying to Florida next month for a cruise with my wife's family. Wouldn't that just suck?
I supported Bush through the whole anti-Al Q'aida campaign in Afghanistan. I've been just as patriotic as anyone else since 9-11 and, unlike most, even before then. I even agreed to help out airline staff during mine and Katie's return flight from our honeymoon should two seedy looking guys on our plane turn out to be terrorists. And, while I was not exactly supportive of Bush's plan to attack Iraq (because I felt diplomatic options were not exhausted), I did completely support our troops as they fought away in the hot desert sun. Despite all this, I'm still a little nervous as to what could possibly happen.
Am I just blowing this completely out of proportion?
Friday, 16 May 2003: I find it amazing sometimes just how much our tastes change as we get older. Be it music, movies, TV shows, food, whatever. I remember being in my teenage years and thinking, "rock and roll is it, there is nothing else." I remember how I loved slasher flicks and sitcoms and I would live on macaroni and cheese and fast food.
I bring this up because this past weekend, Katie and I were hitting some used CD stores trading in a bunch of discs that we don't listen to anymore. I think we netted something like $70 with out trade ins. But I was looking at some of the stuff that I was trading and remembering some of the other stuff I've traded in recent years and then I realized, "wow, I've changed."
I used to own a ton of KISS, Van Halen, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Ozzy (solo and with Black Sabbath), and the Rolling Stones. Looking through what's left, I've got less than half of the KISS and VH CDs I once owned. I still listen to these particular albums from time to time or, in the case of some of my KISS albums, they belonged to my friend Mike who died almost a decade ago and I could never trade them no matter what. Instead of being the die-hard fan I once was who had to own every single studio release by these two bands, I've just decided to pare down my collection to those "essential" albums that I just can't live without.
As for the other four bands I listed, I've traded all my Stones, Zep, and Floyd CDs because they are so overplayed on the radio. Ironic, isn't it? Usually it's top 40 hits that get overplayed. But in this case, the desire by fans and radio stations to be "retro" or "classic" has put these bands in high demand. Okay, I guess I should throw in that I'm tired of hearing Zeppelin's "Rock n' Roll" being used incessantly in the Cadillac ad campaign (or is it Oldsmobile?). Ozzy is another case altogether. He's not just overexposed on the radio, but also on TV, magazines, the 'Net, you name it. I can't stand to look at him or hear his voice or read about him anymore. That damn The Osbournes show on MTV has ruined him for me. I worshipped the guy and listened to all his stuff and now I want nothing to do with it. He's lost his allure and his mystique. Now he's just a withering old man who can barely move and can't get out a single coherent sentence. Where's the fun in that?
I kinda feel bad about it... but only to a degree. Sharon (his wife and manager) is probably thinking that they've lost merely one fan in favor of a legion of others. Well, I'm a long-time fan that has been lost and the new fans will be fleeting, at best. And I know I'm not the only one.
I guess I will go put in one of my Ryan Adams or one of my Pete Yorn CDs. At least they're not yet overkilled.
While I'm in the music mode, I'd like to give my condolences to Johnny Cash on the loss of his wife June Carter-Cash. If you have a chance, head over to his website and check out the message board. Also, listen to some of the songs he's got there. He's done some amazing work in his lifetime and I didn't even realize how much good stuff he's got out there. Even some of his newer covers of current bands are really good.. especially his cover of "Hurt" by Nine Inch Nails. The song is amazing and the video will make you want to cry when you think of how it can be interpreted as eerily foreshadowing his wife's death. Check it out at RollingStone.com (you may need to register with RollingStone.com to view it, but it's free to do so).
Thursday, 15 May 2003 (later still): Damn, three entries in one day! What the hell is wrong with me? Well, don't get used to it. It's just a busy news and rant day. Maybe I'll take some time off tomorrow.
Well, Fox has announced their schedule for the fall and here you will find it. Bear in mind that Fox is kinda like WGN/WB in that they don't have a 9 p.m. show because they run their nightly news at that time. So don't think I'm slacking on my reporting.
Sundays - Oliver Beene (6 p.m.), King of the Hill (6:30 p.m.), The Simpsons (7 p.m.), The Ortegas(7:30 p.m.), Malcolm in the Middle (8 p.m.), Arrested Development (8:30 p.m.) - Oliver Beene has moved to much earlier in the evening after following up Malcolm for the second half of this season. The Ortegas is one of two new attempts by Fox next season to cash in on the underserved hispanic population on TV. Arrested Development is show about a rich family who winds up in the poorhouse when the father is arrested for illegal accounting practices. May as well just rename this one Enron.
Mondays - Joe Millionaire (7 p.m.) and Skin (8 p.m.) - I'm still trying to figure out how they plan to get away with another Joe Millionaire as well as figure out how they're going to fill this slot in the offtime.Skin is billed as a Romeo & Juliet styled love story about two teens from very different families... in this case, the son of a U.S. Senator and the daughter of a porn mogul. Hey, we've been asking for different and now we're getting it.
Tuesdays - American Juniors (7 p.m.) and 24 (8 p.m.) - If American Juniors sounds eerily similar toAmerican Idol, that's because it is, complete with pint-sized prima donnas and all. This year, I will definitely tune in regularly for 24 if it kills me.
Wednesdays - That '70s Show (7 p.m.), A Minute With Stan Hooper (7:30 p.m.), Bernie Mac (8 p.m.), and Cedric the Entertainer Presents (8:30 p.m.) - I'm already locked in to taping Ed and My Wife and Kids at 7 p.m. on Wednesdays because Katie and I are always either in class or working and we only own two VCRs. So, yet again, I'm gonna miss out on watching new episodes of That '70s Show which I have just recently become a fan of. I have not watched Bernie Mac or Cedric yet, but I hear they're good. A Minute With Stan Hooper is a Norm MacDonald starrer about a big city reporter who relocates to small-town Wisconsin. Ehh... neh.
Thursdays - Tru Calling (7 p.m.) and The O.C. (8 p.m.) - Tru Calling is one of two teen-oriented dramas on Thursdays about a girl who has the ability to relive days from her past. While The O.C. is about a poor youngster living in a rich household in Orange County (hence, The O.C.). Sounds pretty remniscient of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, but I'm curious about how it will translate in dramatic format.
Fridays - Wanda at Large (7 p.m.), Luis (7:30 p.m.), and Boston Public (8 p.m.) - I have never really had a desire to watch Wanda despite all the hype. What I've seen of her on TV has kinda annoyed me.Luis may be cool because it stars Luis Guzman (The Count of Monte Cristo) in the second hispanic cash-in attempt by FOX. And, since I will already be tuning in for Boston Public, I may as well lead in withLuis. But, I must say that I'm pissed that Public has moved to Friday. I much prefer its old Monday night slot. However, it won't stop me from watching it.
Saturdays - COPS (7 and 7:30 p.m.), America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back (8 p.m.) - I'll be avoiding this night entirely. Not my cup of tea. Kinda funny how the Most Wanted title now sounds like aStar Wars movie title.
Other Notes - Well, for once, FOX's lineup doesn't sound all too horrible. Many of the new shows may be a touch-and-go affair in that I'll decide whether or not to give them a chance once I start seeing some teasers later in the summer.
Oh, and don't expect lineups for WB and UPN. I just don't care enough. All Katie cares about is whether or not 7th Heaven is on Mondays at 7 p.m. and, so far as I know, it is.
Thursday, 15 May 2003 (a little later on): Okay, this one is not a war rant. This is about CBS' fall primetime schedule. Here ya go...
Sundays - Cold Case (7 p.m.) and Sunday Night Movie (8 p.m.) - After the cancellation of the steadily dwindling Becker and the horrible-right-out-of-the-chute My Big Fat Greek Life (here's an interesting article), CBS decided to fill the gap with a new drama about a Philly detective who cracks unsolved mysteries from Jerry Bruckheimer (the TV guru behind current CBS hits CSI, CSI: Miami, and Without A Trace)
Mondays - Yes Dear (7 p.m.), Still Standing (7:30 p.m.), Everybody Loves Raymond (8 p.m.), Two and a Half Men (8:30 p.m.), and CSI: Miami (9 p.m.) - A litte shuffling, but the only new show is Two and a Half Men with Charlie Sheen as a rich Malibu bachelor whose style is cramped by his younger brother (Jon Cryer) and his daughter.
Tuesdays - Navy CIS (7 p.m.), The Guardian (8 p.m.), and Judging Amy (9 p.m.) - Navy CIS is a JAG clone about a Navy/Marine criminal investigation team starring Mark Harmon. Kinda cool to see him back finally. It's been a while since Chicago Hope went off the air and Harmon really hasn't done much since.
Wednesdays - 60 Minutes II (7 p.m.), The King of Queens (8 p.m.), The Stones (8:30 p.m.), and The Brotherhood of Poland, N.H. (9 p.m.) - King of Queens is on a new night followed by The Stones about adult kids living with their parents - oh joy. The Brotherhood of Poland, N.H., aside from having an annoying long name, is a small-town drama from David E. Kelley (The Practice, Ally McBeal, and Boston Public) featuring an ensemble cast headed up by Randy Quaid. Could be worth at least one viewing. But, then I'm tenuous because of the bomb that was Kelley's offering last season - girls' club.
Thursdays - Survivor (7 p.m.), CSI: Crime Scene Investigations (8 p.m.), and Without A Trace (9 p.m.) - Ah, thank you CBS for not changing my favorite night.
Fridays - Joan of Arcadia (7 p.m.), JAG (8 p.m.), and The Handler (9 p.m.) - Joan of Arcadia is a religiously inspired show about a suburban girl who has spontaneous conversations with God via her fellow human beings. Guess CBS had to fill the Touched By an Angel void somehow. Costars Mary Steenburgen and Joe Mantegna as her parents. JAG moves to a new night. And The Handler is a new one with Joey Pants as an FBI trainer who also goes after LA's seedy crimeworld in his offtime. Wonder when he sleeps?
Saturdays - 48 Hours Investigates (7 p.m.), Hack (8 p.m.), and The District (9 p.m.) - Some shuffling. Not enough to make me tune in, though.
Other Notes - So, I guess I'll be living on CBS on late Monday nights and all night on Thursday and not really any other. I can only take so many dramas in one week. There will be a couple others that I will check out to see what they're like, but I can't make any guarantees. Oh, and if you get a chance, definitely read the article I linked up above about My Big Fat Greek Life. It's funny. Talks about how Nia Vardalos has succumbed to the Hollywood prima donna way of life. Good for a chuckle.
Thursday, 15 May 2003 (a little earlier on): I was reading through Fark.com and found a headline for an article on the San Francisco Gate website (the link wasn't working unfortunately) that I found interesting. The headline on Fark read "No WMDs after all, no excuse for war, too late for anyone to care anymore. Ha ha, suckers." Of course, unless you've been living in a hole, WMD stands for Weapons of Mass Destruction. But, anyway, this headline got me thinking and we all know how dangerous that is.
Okay, the war itself is over (insofar as big battles go) and all of us here in the States are celebrating our victory. But, why doesn't anyone care as much about the aftermath of what happened over there? There is not nearly the coverage given to the aftermath as there should be. And you don't hear people talk about it like they did the war.
We make it sound like our job in Iraq is done. The fighting is over, right? So what else is left? Well, I was under the impression that the purpose of the U.S. (and to a much smaller scale, Britain and Australia) fighting in Iraq was to disarm Iraq of its weapons of mass destruction as well as free the people and help them get started up again. Have we really achieved this goal? I somehow don't think so.
Well, for one, we have yet to find any of these weapons. We have found evidence that they may have at one time existed. But have we found any actual weapons. Not that I know of. Hell, these remnants may be from weapons that were dismantled years ago.
As for the citizenry, yes, they are "free" in terms of being free from the tyranny of Saddam Hussein's rule (for now, at least; I still think he's alive and will make a return when we least expect it), but they are all now living in fear of their lives. I was watching an interview last night with some Iraqi citizens who are afraid to leave their houses because of the violence that now occurs on the streets. Random beatings, muggings, rapes, destruction of private and public property, looting, carjackings, you name it. And each and every one of them said this sort of thing never happened before. Is this life better for them? Is that what we hoped to achieve by going over there? I sure hope not.
Now, we've got several different ethnic groups fighting for power. We still haven't seated a new head of government. The man we originally sent over there to deal with rebuilding (General Jay Garner) has been replaced. Gas and electric utilities still have not been reestablished. A country that is one of the world's top producers of oil has no gasoline for the vehicles owned by its people.
I realize that we are still working to help the Iraqi people. I know that it's a long and arduous process. But, first impressions are everything and, right now, the first impression that the world is getting is that the U.S. is completely incapable of maintaining control and keeping the peace in Iraq. We are also now being seen as a bunch of slack asses because we can't complete seemingly basic tasks like getting power and gas back to the people. Shoulddn't we have had a plan set up for how to deal with this ahead of time? It's obvious that we did not if the head of our rebuilding team has been canned. Now we're starting anew. And the people of Iraq are in the beginning of their second month of post-war terror.
Ah well, maybe I'm just ranting. Soapbox dismounted.
Wednesday, 14 May 2003: As promised, here is ABC's projected fall primetime lineup. As usual, these are all listed in Central Daylight Time (CDT) so add an hour if you're on the East Coast.
Sundays - 10-8 (7 p.m.), Alias (8 p.m.), and The Practice (9 p.m.). Whoever said that bitching relentlessly gets you nowhere underestimated the power of David E. Kelley's rants and threats... The Practice has moved back to its Sunday night slot. 10-8 is a new police dramedy starring Danny Nucci (Titanic and The Rock) and Ernie Hudson (HBO's Oz and Ghostbusters).
Mondays - Primetime Monday, Monday Night Football (thru January to be replaced with a Monday Night Movie). Hmm... what is there to say really?
Tuesdays - 8 Simple Rules... (7 p.m.), I'm With Her (7:30 p.m.), According to Jim (8 p.m.), Less Than Perfect (8:30 p.m.), NYPD Blue (9 p.m.). The only change is the addition of I'm With Her starring David Sutcliffe (Gilmour Girls) and Teri Polo (Sports Night). Otherwise, it's all the same.
Wednesdays - My Wife and Kids (7 p.m.), It's All Relative (7:30 p.m.), The Bachelor (8 p.m.), andKaren Sisco (9 p.m.). It's All Relative is a new one with Lenny Clarke (The Job) in what's being deemed aBirdcage-esque comedy. Karen Sisco is a spinoff of the character made famous by J.Lo. in the film Out of Sight. Thankfully, it will not be her playing Sisco. Instead, Carla Gugino (Spy Kids) will take over the role. I have no idea what's gonna happen when The Bachelor is on hiatus unless they've got plans for several new Bachelors in the works.
Thursdays - Threat Matrix (7 p.m.), Extreme Makeover (8 p.m.), and Primetime Thursday (9 p.m.).Threat Matrix stars Jamie Denton (Philly) and Kelly Rutherford (Melrose Place) and has nothing to do with the movie The Matrix. But, who really cares? It's not as though any channel stands a chance on this night against the CBS and NBC Thursday night dominance.
Fridays - George Lopez (7 p.m.), Back to Kansas (7:30 p.m.), Hope & Faith (8 p.m.), Life With Bonnie(8:30 p.m.), and 20/20 (9 p.m.). ABC reintroduces its old TGIF programming concept sandwiched by two of the few ABC bright spots in George Lopez and Life With Bonnie. The cream filling are two new shows.Back to Kansas stars one of my wife's stud boys Breckin Meyer (Inside Schwartz) as well as ogleworthyDawson's Creek alum Meredith Monroe. Hope & Faith is the new series for Kelly Ripa (Live With Regis and Kelly) as well as Faith Ford.
Saturdays - The Wonderful World of Disney (7 p.m.) and Dragnet (9 p.m.). The death knell for Dragnet? Possibly.
Other Comments - Well, I honestly don't see ABC coming out of the doldrums of programming hell anytime soon. The only chance it really has is on Tuesdays if 8 Simple Rules... can maintain or, better yet, improve upon its stellar level of writing and NYPD Blue stays as fresh as it has been lately. Fridays could prove to be interesting and ABC stands a chance on this night as well.
If CBS and FOX post their primetime lineups in the next couple of days, I will post them and, then, I promise to not talk TV for a while.
Tuesday, 13 May 2003: Okay, you remember how yesterday I said that NBCs lineup is subject to change because you never know what to expect from those wacky TV programmers? Well, I suppose I should have included a caveat for poor online news reporting as well.
I just read yet another article that claims to have the official NBC fall lineup. This one is somewhat different than the one I posted yesterday. I'm not sure which one to trust (probably neither), but I tend to lean towards this one since it actually has titles for all the new shows. So here goes...
Sundays - American Dreams (7 p.m.), Law & Order: CI (8 p.m.), and The Lyon's Den (9 p.m.). The Lyon's Den is the Rob Lowe drama that was originally listed to open up for The West Wing.
Mondays - Fear Factor (7 p.m.), Las Vegas (8 p.m.), and Third Watch (9 p.m.). Las Vegas is officially the highly unoriginal new title for what was listed as the "untitled Las Vegas drama starring James Caan."
Tuesdays - Whoopi (7 p.m.), Happy Family (7:30 p.m.), Frasier (8 p.m.), Good Morning Miami (8:30 p.m.), Law & Order: SVU (9 p.m.). If you can't figure out what Whoopi is, you need help. However,Happy Family is not the expected Tracy Morgan sitcom. Instead it is a new one with John Larroquette ofNight Court fame and Christine Baranski of Cybill fame.
Wednesdays - Ed (7 p.m.), The West Wing (8 p.m.), and Law & Order (9 p.m.). Back to Wednesday's original lineup from earlier this past season.
Thursdays - Friends (7 p.m.), Scrubs (7:30 p.m.), Will & Grace (8 p.m.), Coupling (8:30 p.m.), and ER(9 p.m.). The same as it was announced yesterday.
Fridays - Miss Match (7 p.m.), Dateline NBC (8 p.m.), and Boomtown (9 p.m.). Well, the slash (/) has been dropped from the original Miss/Match title and Boomtown migrates to Fridays instead of its old Sunday slot.
Saturdays - NBC Saturday Night Movie. I'm assuming it's a very long movie or there are a lot of commercials because this is all that is currently listed for this night.
Other Notes - the Tracy Morgan sitcom will be a midseason replacement and Crossing Jordan will definitely return for a third season but not until midseason because of Hennessy's pregnancy. At least it won't be a Saturday night show.
Tomorrow... ABC's schedule.
Monday, 12 May 2003: Well, NBC has announced its fall 2003 primetime lineup of shows. And, it's interesting to say the least. I'm going to list these all in Central Daylight Time (CDT). Here ya go...
Sundays - American Dreams (7 p.m.), Law & Order: CI (8 p.m.), and Boomtown (9 p.m.) - no changes here whatsoever. But, it's good that they're giving more of a chance to Boomtown despite it's undeservedly low ratings.
Mondays - Fear Factor (7 p.m.), untitled Las Vegas drama starring James Caan (8 p.m.), and Third Watch (9 p.m.) - well, no more Crossing Jordan on Mondays and Third Watch has been bumped back an hour. May tune in more often for Third Watch now. It's a pretty good show, but I just missed it far too often.
Tuesdays - new Whoopi Goldberg sitcom (7 p.m.), new Tracy Morgan sitcom (7:30 p.m.), Frasier (8 p.m.), Good Morning Miami (8:30 p.m.), dunno about the 9 p.m. slot - Obviously a couple of new ones with the possibility of a third new show at 9 and Good Morning Miami has moved from Thursday to Tuesday. That's not always a good sign. Remember how Frasier's ratings dipped after moving to Tuesday? I'm not a Whoopi fan, Morgan is hit or miss with me and I probably won't watch it too much. Haven't watched Frasier since before Niles and Daphne got married (jumped the shark anyone?), but I may still tune in for Miami. There is a possibility that Heather Locklear may join the Miami cast especially since Susanne Pleshette is leaving.
Wednesdays - new Rob Lowe drama (7 p.m.), West Wing (8 p.m.), and Law & Order (9 p.m.) - Rob Lowe leading in to his old show... interesting. However, you probably won't see me tuning in to NBC at all on Wednesdays.
Thursdays - Friends (7 p.m.), Scrubs (7:30 p.m.), Will & Grace (8 p.m.), Coupling (8:30 p.m.), ER (9 p.m.) - Coupling, an adaptation of a British Friends-like comedy taking over in Good Morning Miami's old slot. There are rumblings that Coupling could take over Friends' timeslot when the mainstay goes off the air. It's supposed to be a really funny show, if they translate the concept properly, but it's supposed to be more sexually charged and a little raunchier than Friends ever was. Hmmm...
Fridays - Miss/Match (7 p.m.), Ed (8 p.m.), Law & Order: SVU (9 p.m.) - Ed is staying on Fridays which I don't like, but I do like the 8 p.m. timeslot as opposed to 7 p.m. Miss/Match is a new dramedy starring Alicia Silverstone (Clueless) and is getting a lot of good pre-press. We'll see. I'll definitely tune in for Ed, that goes without saying. I'll give Miss/Match a shot and see what it's like.
Saturdays - open movie slot (7-9 p.m.), Crossing Jordan (9 p.m.) - Well, it's not a good sign for the show if Crossing Jordan is moving onto Saturdays. That's a bad night for any show. But, this is only a possibility as of now because NBC may just hold off on the show until midseason because of star Jill Hennessy's pregnancy. Hopefully, they're just holding out. Katie's gonna hate this change.
Other Comments - I'm wondering if NBC is still planning on airing the new police drama Sunset Stripwhich is supposed to star Jerry O'Connell reprising is Woody character that he started on Crossing Jordan (the tie-in episode between Jordan and Strip occurred about three or four weeks ago and looks semi-promising). I guess this could be the show that winds up in the Tuesday 9 p.m. slot.
Remember, that any or all of this is subject to change. We all know how wacky those TV programmers are.
Sunday, 11 May 2003: I am so thoroughly disappointed in the end result of Survivor tonight. Jenna?! C'mon. If "outplay, outwit, outlast" translates to "sit back on your lazy ass and do nothing," then, yeah, she won. But when it comes to pure competitiveness, it was Matt all the way.
A question... I know this is my first time watching an entire season of Survivor and I know that the castaways can get pretty close, but was something going on between Matt and Jenna in the time off between the end of taping (December) and last night's reunion show? I've seen the final two in pastSurvivors holding hands as the final tally is counted up. But, they were arm-in-arm throughout the reunion. Even Katie was wondering if there was something going on.
Oh, and can we get any more blatantly, and sickeningly, patriotic than Jeff Probst's stop on his jetski in front of the Statue of Liberty? Oh man, there is only so far you go. I'm patriotic, but this was disgusting.