Friday, April 27

I find your lack of courtesy ... disturbing

From a promo that ran before a Star Wars screening at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Just a tiny bit disturbing in that it suggests the guy is about to go hit on a girl in an Imperial jail cell -- #1138 to be specific. A bit of Googling determines that #1138 is inhabited by...Princess Leia. Ew! Also a knowing reference to George Lucas' first movie, TXH-1138.

Via the Darth Vader Twitter stream.

Thursday, April 26

Don't Forget Those Wrist Straps, Kids

Wii remotes don't kill people -- Overenthusiastic Wii Sports bowlers who forget to cinch their wrist straps kill people.

Let's be careful out there.

Wednesday, April 25

My daemon revealed -- and it's not a monkey!

The newly opened website for The Golden Compass -- the first cinematic installment of the His Dark Materials trilogy -- picks out your personal daemon based on answers to a 20-part questionaire.

For those not familiar with the book, it takes place in a world where everyone has a daemon, an animal that is essentially an external representation of your personality or soul. Kids have daemons that change shape until puberty, when they become fixed. So, a warrior might have a tiger daemon, a librarian might have a mouse, and the evil Mrs Coulter has ... (drumroll please) an evil golden monkey daemon.

(Interestingly, everyone in the book has a daemon of the opposite gender except for the gay characters. This isn't an option on the Website.)

I can't say I'm wild about the choice the site picked for me. But in a very cool twist, it lets you solicit feedback from your friends before your daemon assumes its final form. You have 12 days to comment, so get working!

The Golden Compass arrives in theaters Dec. 7.

Greetings from London

I'm back across the pond for a week's worth of work, and boy have things gotten strange here. Don't follow the link below if you're eating lunch and/or squeamish.


Thursday, April 19

Hot Air Balloons of the Sith

More details here.

Choose Your Own Greeting

I was talking with pop-o-matic last night about my hatred for Hallmark-style greeting cards for birthdays, Christmas and other holidays. What does it really mean when you send a card filled with pre-fabricated sentiment: That you own a calendar and don't have any original thoughts?

So it felt fortuitous today when my inbox was filled with details about new blank greeting cards from Moo, my favorite company in the dead paper industry, which makes awesome little business cards based on Flickr photos and Second Life images.

"We miss mail! Not email, we get tons of that, but real mail. Delivered by a friendly postie, straight to your door. So we dreamed up NoteCards - square prints made from your own photos or designs. They have a magic flap on the side, to make them stand up proudly on your mantel, bookshelf or window sill, and are perfect for mailing to friends."
Not that cheap at $25 for 16 cards, but these look very cool. You pick the pictures and the text -- take that you Hallmark bastards!

Wednesday, April 18

Blood Tests Don't Lie

Try not to laugh. I double dare you.

Monday, April 16

That's Wii-tarded

Pop-o-matic has the details of Saturday night's Wii-lympics (Ok, that's the last of the Wii puns, I promise). Check out my boxing form below, with Jeff and Jen cheering me on -- I went 12 rounds against a virtual boxer who looked just like Maya Angelou, and boy are my arms tired.

For the record, Maya went down like a sack of hammers after I gave her a roundhouse to the kidneys. Tell me why the caged bird sings now, beyotch!

Dear Sister...

Stereogum highlights "this perfectly absurd OC-styled clip from Saturday Night Live," noting:
"nothing makes a death scene like Imogen Heap and slow motion."

Sorta like when Marissa offed Ryan's brother, except funnier! Watch now before GE has it obliterated.
Here's SNL's take:

And the original from the OC:

Note that Andy Samburg & Co are well versed in OC-paradology, having previously created the Web series "The Bu."

Dumbo Grafitti

Not sexual

If you're going to allege a global conspiracy to kill thousands of people, you should at least spellcheck your cryptic messages.

Reaching for the Stars

Relaxing after a great Mexican meal at my friend Chris' house last night, I spotted a DVD resting next to her TV. I reached over and beheld this criminally underacclaimed 1986 masterpiece:

The movie, if you don't remember, tells the stirring story of a bunch of kids who are accidentally (!) launched into space due to the misguided yet well-intentioned efforts of a friendly robot named Jinx.

But check out the pool of talent!

Just on the DVD cover we have:
1) Kelly Preston, now wife of John Travolta
2) Tate Donovan, most recently of "Friends" and "The OC"
3) Kate Capshaw, wife of Steven Spielberg
4) Lea Thompson, most famous for "Back to the Future" but also smokin hot in the Tom Cruise film "All the Right Moves"
5) Joaquin (nee "Leaf") Phoenix

and please don't forget

6) Larry B. Scott, aka the black gay guy from Revenge of the Nerds, who also starred as Tasty Taste in the hip-hop mockumentary "Fear of a Black Hat."

We also have perennial Hollywood "Hey It's That Guy" guys Tom Skerritt and Terry Quinn.

Why did SpaceCamp fail to become a hit? Well, it could have something to do with the fact that it was scheduled for release the same month in 1986 that a certain Space Shuttle was destroyed due a faulty O-ring. SpaceCamp's release was delayed a few months.

There is also just the teeniest problem with believability.

But SpaceCamp lives on in our memories...and in Chris' DVD player.

Friday, April 13

New York: Not an X-Man Town

Spotted this on my way to lunch today.

Thursday, April 12

Beware Falling Mets Fans

After a recent trip to Tigers spring training with my dad and brother last month, I had been thinking how much fun it would be to catch a few Mets games now that I'm back in New York.

Or, maybe not.

Newsday reports:
Ellen Massey always counted being struck by a baseball or a bat at Shea Stadium among the hazards of being a Mets fan, but she never thought a 300-pound man would come crashing down the stands -- and onto her.

That's what the Manhattan resident, 58, said happened on Monday, Opening Day at Shea.

Spring Cleaning

Especially attentive readers may notice a few changes in Monkeydaemonville -- I've freshened things up a bit from the tired old Blogger template I was using and updated my sidebar to include new friends like Pop-o-matic, Myhusbandhatesvegetables and Indy Wright.

Now I just need to figure out how to add a translucent graphic header -- Anyone with graphic design skillz, drop me a line.

Springtime in Roma

Gourmet's Ruth Reichl has a short little dispatch that has my stomach grumbling:
I've been in Rome for the past week, and it's reminding me how much great produce we still miss out on. The small, lavender-striped artichokes that are in every market are almost unbearably delicious. It's the season for puntarelle, the Roman salad green with juicy, pungent stalks that are always eaten zinged with anchovy sauce. And though it's only March, every tomato I've tasted here has been absolutely fabulous. I haven't even mentioned the sexy blood oranges with their shocking magenta color or the fragoline di bosco—wild strawberries that smell like violets in springtime—that are such a happy ending to a meal.

Washing Dishes with a Stiff Upper Lip

How awesomely British is this tea towel (dish rag, for my Yankee readers), based on a WWII-era poster that was prepared in case the country was invade by zee Germans??

Wednesday, April 11

Don't Steal From Stevie

Who would have the gall to steal from Stevie Wonder, aka Steveland Morris, perhaps my favorite musician of all time, creator of songs including "Superstition" and "As." (OK, he also made "I Just Called To Say I Love You" but nobody's perfect.)

Last week, Steve had to buy back his own Grammy award for Innervisions, which had been stolen long ago, the NY Post reports:
The music legend had to shell out a winning bid of $37,375 to snap up the statuette at an L.A. auction held by Profiles in History late last week. Wonder's camp tried to stop the auction, claiming the Grammy had been stolen years ago and sold from collector to collector. But sources tell us because he never reported the theft when it happened, authorities were powerless to intervene, leaving him no choice but to buy it back.
Oh, by the way, Stevie has a record 22 Grammy Awards, including best album for 1974, 1975 and 1977. In 1976, Grammy award winner Paul Simon thanked him for not making an album that year.

Click here to download a nice little instrumental cover of one of the best cuts off of Innervisions, "Jesus Children of America." (From the music blog Art Decade

Tuesday, April 10

Joke of the Day

Q: What do you get if you cross a robot
with a pirate?

A: Arrrrrrgh 2D2.

Wii are the Champions

Last weekend's Guitar Hero-fest had me reconsidering my long-standing plans to buy a Nintendo Wii. Happily, it looks like Guitar Hero will be out this year on the Wii (and the portable Nintendo DS), according to comments from game publisher Activision:

"In fiscal 2008, we'll double our offerings on DS and the Wii," said Activision Publishing president and CEO Mike Griffith, "including Spiderman, Shrek, Transformers, and Guitar Hero."

Rawk on!

Monday, April 9

My New Favorite Month

The weather may suck, but I can take strength from the fact that April is National Grilled-Cheese Sandwich Month.

I take great pride in my grilled cheeses, which I cook with a cast-iron pan, a sandwich iron and a drizzle of olive oil. The other big factor are ingredients -- I prefer sour dough bread and aged cheddar.

My ultimate GC comes from Borough Market in London: Poilane bread and Montgomery Cheddar. Not coincidentally, these are also the ingredients used by perhaps the world's best grilled (or, because it's England, "toasted") cheese makers -- Bill "The Raclette Man" Oglethorpe.

NY Magazine has a list of places to sample the grilled-cheesian arts.

New footage from 'Golden Compass'

A lot of leaks onto the Internets from the forthcoming movie adaptation of "Golden Compass," the first installment in Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy.

Keep a close eye out for this blog's namesake, the golden monkey daemon of Mrs. Coulter (played by Nicole Kidman). The movie also reunites "Casino Royale" stars Daniel Craig and Eva Green.

thanks for the tip, Jeff!

Mashup Monday

Do the Boomin' Granny

This took me forever and it's not perfect, but it is my first attempt: "Do the Granny" by the Niteliters versus "Boomin' Granny" by the Beastie Boys

Getting the Band Back Together

I spent Easter weekend in scenic West Chester, PA with friends, and the main event was without a doubt Guitar Hero 2. Take 1 plastic guitar controller, add 2 cups of face-melting, soul-shredding rock'n'roll and bring to a boil...

Our band Cokfarm Kokfarm did remarkably well, progressing from high school gyms to playing Stonehenge, where we were carried away by a UFO after a triumphant encore rendition of Freebird.

Here's a few selected clips from our rockstar weekend:

Carry On My Wayward Son - Kansas
Killing in the Name of - Rage Against the Machine
Cherry Pie - Warrant
War Pigs - Black Sabbath
Psychobilly Freakout - Reverand Horton Heat (video)

That last song from the Rev. Heat was probably the most taxing song of the bunch, requiring supreme effort from lead guitarist Ben "Papa Cokfarm" Smith. Which made it all the more humiliating when this clip of a virtuoso 8 year old popped up on YouTube:

UPDATE -- Here's a picture I stole from pop-o-matic

Tuesday, April 3

Catch-up Day

Nobody don't have no time for nuthin no more, do they?

I'm a bit behind so I'm doing a brain dump:

-- George Orwell's old neighborhood in North London (the same where I lived until a few weeks ago) is crawling with cameras.

-- Bringing together two of the most ardent fanboys in the world, rare sneakers + transformers = geekfest!

-- "You've never heard of the Millennium Falcon ... in chocolate?"