Today’s guest rant comes compliments of my writing partner, Paul, who phoned me up last night to slam the Canadian news for its insistence on playing fast and loose with the rules of time travel.  Multiple times over the past few days, CTV has referred to Ancient Greece as though it were a potential vacation destination as in  “Today, the Olympic torch was lit in Ancient Greece.”.   Paul was quick to point out that unless they traveled back in time to about 8th century BC, that torch was lit in far less impressive comtemporary Greece.  Where are those news fact-checkers when you need ’em?

I’m off to a warp party tonight (Yes, THAT wrap party), so while I’m off putting my two years of break-dancing classes to good use, amuse yourselves with the following links.

So you want to take her somewhere fancy but you’re on a budget.  Well, why not consider McDonalds?  Not just any old neighborhood McDonalds, but one of these McFancy dining destinations (http://ca.askmen.com/top_10/travel/top-10-mcdonalds_10.html).  My fave is the Parisian location featured.  Really, what says fast food better than leather curved sofas and bar seating?

On the flipside, here are some restaurants you may want to avoid on a first date: http://thechive.com/2009/09/20-restaurants-to-avoid-at-all-costs/.  On the other hand, if you’re feeling adventurous, perhaps you may be in the mood for some Vagina Tandoori.

Answer one of these questions and help a physicist gets a good night’s sleep: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn18041-seven-questions-that-keep-physicists-up-at-night.html

How many times have you lamented the fact that someone has yet to invent a pair of shoes that allow you to vacuum while you walk?  Well, lament no more.  Go here (http://www.thetoyzone.com/2009/blog/21-shoes-that-every-geek-would-love/) and feast your eyes.  Pick up a pair for your significant other and, while you’re there, get yourself a pair of Ninja boots.

Also from the gang at TheToyZone.com, here are The Top 20 Toys We Never Want to See Under The Christmas Tree: http://www.thetoyzone.com/2009/blog/20-toys-we-never-want-to-see-under-the-christmas-tree/.  I don’t know.  What little girl wouldn’t love a Pole Dancing Doll?

Okay, I’m off!

Yes, yes.  I’ll take pictures.

56 thoughts on “October 24, 2009: A Guest Rant and Some News of Note!

  1. Hey, Joe…did I read right the other day/week? You’re thinking up two word episode titles for season 2?? If so, I got one! Sloppy Seconds, the episode where Eli finally gets the girl. 😉

    Have a great evening, sir!

    das

  2. I think that the reporters were confused because during the ceremony the women lighting the torch were dressed “classically”. I certainly was convinced that the modern Olympic Committee had opened a time portal to obtain an authentic flame…. I am glad Edward R. Murrow has already moved onto the great beyond. If he’d seen where his professional heirs have gone I suspect he’d have changed jobs.
    Hope you have a blast at the wrap party. That means your adventures in the far east are fast approaching…

  3. Your list of potential Christmas presents (ToyZone) for my brother’s three children was good reading – makes me wonder if ANY thought went into their design.

    Hope your mother is well(ish) and that she gets a diagnosis soon. I hope that your doggies are starting to get excited about Santa Paws coming to visit.

    Susan

  4. my question is “how many times will the destiny crew be going off-world in the first half of the season?”

  5. Joe,

    Just watched “Light” – I’m afraid I fell asleep early last night and had to catch it on DVR…sorry,at least I’m not a Nielson household, right?

    I enjoyed “Light” a bit more. I felt bad for Eli (who is becoming my favorite character – “Math Boy”, lol!) when Scott and Chloe hooked up in the hallway. That hook up, btw, seemed a bit contrived, considering they’d only known each other for a VERY short time (we assume). It made me think of that scene in “Grease 2” and a similar one in “Independence Day” when the couple are having the “This may be our last day alive; you don’t want to die a virgin” speech. Now I wonder where Scott and Chloe go from here? Just good friends? Friends with benefits? Or awkwardly pretend it didn’t happen? Acknowledge it for the act of desperation that it was and move on to develop a real friendship? Should be interesting to see.

    I hope Rush spoke the truth when he said that he wasn’t himself in the previous episode. It would be hard not to start wishing for a horrible accident to kill him off if he continued the way he had been.

    Oh! And I cheered outloud – loud enough that the darling son, who was supposed to be in bed, came running out to see if I was watching football and who was winning – when MSgt Greer knocks Spencer to the deck with his rifle. If Eli isn’t my fav, Greer may be. I LIKE ‘IM!!! (And he’s CUTE besides!)

    Thank you, as always, for keeping us up to date,

    BTW: Daughter Jennifer wants to know when you started writing fiction/scripts. She’s now 11 and has been writing poetry and fiction for two years now. I started writing in middle school (after watching “The Jewel of the Nile”) and she wants to compare, I guess. Also, she asks if you went to college and, if so, what you majored in?

    Thank you, again,

    Mary A. Milan

  6. Have fun, Joe! Is it too much to ask for a breakdancing video?

    @dasNdanger

    Your comment inspired me to come up with my own two-word episode titles. Here they are, for your reading enjoyment!

    Carte Blanche
    Broken Ties
    Bad Wolf, the episode where Doctor Who is referenced
    Death Knell
    First Contact
    and, for the obligatory comedic non-serious suggestion, let’s go with “The End.”

  7. thanks for the funny links, I will be up all night now trying to figure out the answers to help those poor physicists get some rest…
    And is there a holiday I am missing, the weather person here on a local channel was talking about the weather for the holiday next weekend, I think I missed the memo that made halloween such a day?!?
    So I can see where Paul is coming from on the duh moments these people are having. I don’t think anyone proofreads newspapers anymore either,ever. another pet peeve.along with if you call me and ask for me on the phone, at least try to say my name correctly, you must not want to sell me something very bad if you can’t at least do that. whew.. I hope you are having a blast at the party and thanks for thinking of us and taking some photos.
    Have a terrific weekend!!

  8. Two comments/ observations, both relating to my European travel extravaganza in 2006:
    1) Greece is gorgeous. Perhaps less impressive now that the buildings are all falling over and in ruins, but still a magnificent place to visit.
    2) There are a LOT of McDonald’s in Paris. I seriously saw 3 within a one-block walk of each other. (Granted, one was on the other side of the street, but STILL!)

  9. Sooo…

    When I make a deep, meaningful comment, it gets lost in a sea of other posts…but when I make some rude and crude remark, it sits out there for hours, all by its onesies.

    Sometimes, Joe, I think you do this stuff to me on purpose. 😛

    das

  10. Hi Joe! Great episode last night. I’m enjoying SGU more and more each week. Forgive me if this has already been asked, but why is Senior Airman Riley being called Sergeant? Did he get a field promotion and I missed it? I would assume Staff Sergeant stripes would be hard to come by on the Destiny. Just curious.

    Looking forward to next week!

  11. More on Light – I watched it again today and still mostly liked it, although there are still some issues. I find it rather fascinating that just as I was ready to walk away from SGU , I got hooked in and no longer hate Rush and finally see some real complexity instead of someone who is just a jerk. The jury is still out on SGU for me, though; if the women remain wallpaper or sluttish, I won’t stay for the long haul even if I otherwise like some of the male characters or even the stories. I’m too old for this and it’s the damned 21st century already; women shouldn’t be only sex objects and foils for the men in a tv show anymore. Sexism is something I’ve been fighting since I could remember, and I won’t tolerate it in SF anymore.

    @Ryan, no, I don’t want Scott behaving “like a thoughtless, easily replaced cog in a machine” and never suggested anything of the kind. Are you suggesting that he’s not human unless he’s f**king a different babe every few days? I didn’t notice anyone else on that ship behaving that way (besides that pathetic excuse for a woman he was having sex with), and there were lots of very strong, virile marines. There are a lot of ways to show people dealing with stress and difficulty; screwing your way through every situation doesn’t have to be the only way. We’ve already seen that this man is indiscriminate in his sexual behavior. I don’t trust anyone who is, and I don’t care about his age. He’s showing an amazing lack of judgment: he’s a man who has already gotten one woman pregnant resulting in an abortion. That’s pretty damned serious. He didn’t learn from that? He’s supposedly religious, too. So the first time we see him in SGU he’s screwing a woman in a storage room while they’re both on duty. A few days later, he’s screwing a different woman (who, btw, has no personality save the “oh, I’m feeling bad, f*** me”).

    I don’t doubt that there are people who behave that way. I wouldn’t trust them, and I certainly wouldn’t follow them anywhere. A serious lack of judgment in one area indicates that there may be problems in another. Someone who can’t learn from big mistakes is not someone I think should be in the position that he is in.

    Also, Ryan, consider that there is a big range of behavior between a person engaging in indiscriminate sexual behavior and behaving “like a thoughtless, easily replaced cog in a machine.” Truth is, someone doing what he does is instead the thoughtless one.

    @ rednor – and I’m wondering how many more men Chloe is going to sleep with on that ship. Maybe she can put a red light on her door.

    @Raeveava – Yeah, I agree that Eli deserves someone, but not that manipulative creep Chloe. She’d eat him alive and leave him bleeding.

    @Das – I concur re Greer, although I am surprised that you are hmm, cheating on Todd, mentally at least, so to speak.  Jamil Walker Smith is just awesome. The character is a lot smarter and more complex than he appeared in Air part 1. I like him a lot.

    And Das, yes, your misogyny may be showing a tiny bit, although my suspicion is that you are a little less misogynist than you say. At any rate, while they do exist in real life, I think there are far fewer “conniving little bitches” in real life than tv portrays, and I choose to avoid tv where these characters are stock in trade. They’re just a cliché, frankly, and I expect more of Stargate than that. The same people who gave us Samantha Carter, Janet Frazier and Elizabeth Weir are giving us this total waste of space and time. It wouldn’t be so bad if she were counterbalanced by females with personalities and something to add to the show, but sadly, so far, that is lacking. That is my biggest disappointment with SGU: the overwhelming (and it IS overwhelming) sexism.

    @ Arctic Goddess – I agree with you re Chloe. I am not certain why women like her are so common on tv; I’ve met a couple in my life, but not many. Why we need to see so much of her when she adds nothing to the story, and there are so many others who could be used to flesh out the story, or at least have a story, is beyond my understanding.

    @Juralas – I buy it with Eli and the “mathboy” routine. I know someone like that; she’s the smartest person I’ve ever met and she’s an astrophysicist who works for the government. Note that Eli didn’t say he couldn’t explain, but there was no time. And I think the Rodney or Sam could have done the same.

    @Anniefromfremantle: no, the people who have expressed negative opinions about the explicit sex shown on SGU – and their disagreement with the idea that Scott and Chloe, Scott and whoever, should be getting it on like this do NOT want to see people going to the bathroom, either. That was kind of the point.

    @Nina, I don’t know if I think that Rush despises the military – I think he respects Young and some of the others at least, at some level. I think he’s deeply afraid of human connection. I was thinking of him as a less humorous but no less screwed up person than Monk, oddly enough.

    @Rose – good point about the issue of suicide and what then would have been the question about whether Rush knew. Since I figured since last week that Destiny was going to repower itself from the sun, I was pretty sure no one would die. I also figured that the people in the shuttle were in far worse danger than those on the ship (hey, just because a planet is in the goldilocks zone doesn’t mean it can support human life; all it means is that it’s more likely to have the capacity to support and develop life). I did spend the episode wondering if someone would have killed themselves instead of waiting to die, and if that had been the case (as it most assuredly would have been on BSG, for example), the question of what Rush knew or didn’t know would have been more difficult. I am glad they didn’t go there.

  12. “I’m off to a warp party tonight.” When I read this, I thought maybe you were one of those Trekie nerds or something. But then I read on and you said, “Wrap Party.” Great going on the first season of SGU! This show rocks, so tell everyone you work with that they’re doing great!

  13. @das: ew.

    Hey Joe,

    I read the “20 Toys We Never Want To See Under The Christmas Tree” link and man was it ever terribly written. Tons of spelling and grammar errors and the writer seems to love the phrase “due to”.

    Anyways, it was still worth a read for the nostalgia factor. My family still owns lawn darts. We never played a proper game with them, we’d just see how high we could throw them and watch them fall.

    Also, I can’t believe there was a doll with “real chewing action”. Some toy developer was not in his right mind that day.

    Cheers,

    -J

  14. Light was a great episode, not quite on par with the previous episodes but still enjoyable in its own right.

    Spoilers

    Spoilers

    Spoilers

    Lots of good things:
    The lottery was handled well and with lots of suspense. Nice to see some of the other 80+ survivors and get names for them.
    Visual effects were stunning again. Will you have enough $$$ for the whole season?
    Liked Greer punching out the loudmouth.

    The one thing I didn’t like was that the first half of the episode seemed to run really slow(compared to the previous four episodes). It did pick up the pace in the second half.

    Things to watch for:
    Rush seemed to cringe visibly when Young patted him on the back. Will we see some previous issues for him(abuse?).
    We now know what put Greer in the brig. He punched out Telford. My guess is that Young prevented serious charges being filed and that is one reason Telford doesn’t like him.
    Have we actually seen all the survivors? Are you saving a couple of slots for possible big-name guest spots? And do you have names for all of them for continuity sake?
    What happened to the Kino? Is it still floating out there? Will we see some alien find it and be able to access the videos? That could give them some real intel for an infiltration.
    Will we see some conflict between the “Lucky 17” and those that were left behind?
    As happy as I was that the communication stones were not used, this is the one episode where they should have been! Most of the survivors are about to die and they don’t let the SGC know???

    Bring on “Water”!!!

  15. Dear Joe,

    1.Will our SGU cast ever fix the broken shuttle in season 1?

    2. Sorry for being repetitive: Is the Destiny as big as a Hive?

    3. In the Milky Way and Pegasus, did the ancients terraform all the planets with stargates and those off the grid. I say this because we have yet to see similar planets in the galaxy the destiny is presently in?

    thanks and safe trip to Japan… if that where you are headed…. keep us updated on how Mrs. Mallozzi senior is doing… wish her well

  16. Yo add just a little bit more to the U.S vs. Canada Health care debate, this just published by the L.A. Times —

    “Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center has become too overcrowded to handle the expected surge of H1N1 flu patients in coming months, county leaders said this week as they forced hospital officials to reduce wait times by transferring patients more quickly.

    The crowd waiting for emergency room beds at County-USC often swells to 100, some waiting up to 24 hours, Supervisor Gloria Molina said. Recent county reports show that 30% to 40% of the time the hospital is operating at “severely” and “dangerously” overcrowded levels.”

    I still prefer Canada’s system of health care.

    Concerning the shortage of water in next weeks episode of SGU, I’ll bet it has to do with all those people taking the misty showers. Col. Young mentioned that people were showering. Next up…a planet with lots of water that the Destiny can skim through? I think everyone should just sit tight, enjoy the ride, and let the space ship save their sorry behinds.

  17. I still can’t wrap my head around that, das. I think it’s cool, but they’d just *have* to eventually abandon it. That’s where my joke about the fifth season comes in, and it winds up sharing episode title concepts with sitcoms. ‘The One With The Shuttle’, ‘The One With Seven Aliens’, ‘The One That Got Away’, ‘The One For The Shippers’, etc.

  18. Just watched “light” I thought it was awesome.

    Maybe the people at CTV have a puddle jumper, or think Greece is Ancient Greece?

  19. Seems some sex has been spotted on SGU, I thought that was what Fanfiction was for??? Its like watching my KIDS doin it dude!! LMAO

  20. Hope everyone had a great time at the party!

    Regarding the fancy McDonald’s, there’s one that we visit on the way to Northern Michigan that features a fireplace surrounded by leather chairs and couches. The bathroom had granite countertops and what looked to be some pretty high-end tile. The menu still mostly consists of burgers and fries, but the coffee is good and it’s not a bad place to stop and take a break from the road. 🙂

  21. Okay so I don’t hate you. I rewatched the episode with my daughter. He WAS delightfully surprised it wasn’t blowing up. Could he have hoped, thought? Yes. Known, no. So sending the shuttle was the right thing. And it is sad that just when he was starting to feel a TINY bit a part of the crew, suspicions pushed him away again. Obviously no matter what Rush does, Young is going to think the worse.
    Oh wait, I do hate you. Addiction…I am loving this show (except you need to step up with the women).

  22. OMG just read das comment… I am ashamed to say Leora and I discussed that she should have given him some so he doesn’t die a virgin… except it would be too icky as a sloppy second. Ewww.

  23. It’s not the furniture that distinguishes a restaurant from a junkfood place. It’s not even the quality of the food.

    It’s the sounds.

  24. I wonder if the episode titles will get to be a trend. Will season three titles be allowed three words? What happens when this series gets to ten seasons? Perhaps one day the titles will be around a paragraph in length. =0)

  25. Oh god Das you are BAD!!!

    May I propose Dream Hack (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DreamHack ) where the crew is having a big LAN party with some ancient game they discovered on board, while trying to stay awake (they mustn’t fall asleep for some reason – waiting for results, bad radiation, whatever).

  26. Mary: I only wish that were true (I think there are far fewer “conniving little bitches” in real life than on TV).
    I’m related to quite a few (some by marriage) of them. I’m considered the “odd” one in my family tree. I’ve never been arrested, I went to college and I’ve only been married once.

    My observation is drugs have a root cause in some of this odd behavior but not all the time.

    It’s fairly common for me, to hear of one of my relatives conning an old man of out of his property (proud of it!) and sticking him a nursing home. Leaving one internet hookup for another (while they are married/w kids). I’ve got a ton of stories! Just watching the news is an education on human behavior.

    It never ceases to amaze me what they drag their kids through. Another generation that will think these behaviors are normal.

    Sad but there are a lot of conniving little stupid bitches out there. As for Chloe, she just may be young and dumb. However, we haven’t seen what her future is in SGU. My question for her is, why is she hooking up with Scott and then being very friendly with Eli? She is not stupid. When a girl is nice to a guy, most of the time the guy will interrupt this as “interest”. Southern girls learns that early!

    Tam

  27. @ das… LOL, so now I’m wondering if the Ancients knew about bidets.

    Warp party? My mind went all Rocky Horror before it went Trek. Way too early in the day to be such a freak.

  28. RE: “Light”

    Another plus-size MALE supporting role…”The lights in my room came back on” guy. Why not a plus-size or gray-haired woman?

  29. Stargate Universe is a masterpiece! Loving everything about it. “Light” was magnificent, best of Stargate in a long time. I’m embarrassed to say how much I cried. (A lot.) Damn Joel and his music, always gets to me.

    Can we expect some more Rush whump? Carlyle’s performance in “Darkness” blew me away.

  30. Notes after reading comments of 23 & 24 Oct.:

    I think I detect Portugese and German accents in some comments. Bienvenidos /Wilkommen!

    Rush, IMHO, was a grieving depressive when we met him in “Air I”. Probably was on meds and had not disclosed his illness to anyone on Icarus. The whole DESTINY situation would worsen his condition, for many reasons.

    Then again, Brad and Robert may have a simpler explanation.

  31. otrosojos said:
    Austin is often referred to as “San Francisco on the Colorado” — from my POV, an awesome compliment to Austin; and you, I am confident, are well-aware also of the negative connotations to that comparison coming from those of a more conservative stripe. (Your take, por favor?)

    Otros, indeed I am aware. Worked in Austin & read the STATESMAN in late 80’s, have lived in SAT since 89. As you might expect, am more attached to SAT. But am tempted to move to smaller city in about a decade.

  32. I learned a new word today by reading the comments: “misogyny”
    what a strange-looking word o.O looks actually more like an illness …

    about the Chloe/Scott discussion:
    I didn’t mind the sex scene, the light was indeed great but I don’t see the necessity for including it – after seeing Chloe and Scott leave one could guess what they were up to…
    I don’t like Chloe (she simply annoys me) but I don’t see her as a scheming character, I actually thought the ‘afterwards-conversation’ with Scott was unexpectedly thoughtful of her

    about the Scott/Eli choice:
    her connection with Scott comes from the (admittedly few but still intense) conversations with him and you could see in Darkness that Eli wasn’t more than a friend for her – no betrayal there
    so I don’t like her but don’t see her as slut or anything similar… simply someone who’s trying my nerves 😉

    on the other hand, Scott does seem like a male slut but I don’t have a problem with him when he’s wearing his pants – he’s a good “whatever-his-military-rank-was-again”
    I do understand the criticism about him not having learned anything out of his previous fault but he realized back then that becoming priest was no option for him and well, I believe he learned the contraceptive lesson… at least in normal, pre-destiny life
    and back then, the girl was sixteen and it’s not like he raped her – with sixteen you should generally know about procreation, so it wasn’t his fault alone (even though that might be what he’s thinking)


    Hope the wrap party was fun (and you got some nice pictures)!
    Some of the toys were really disturbing (the pole dancer and superman ranking at the top o.O”)

  33. @Gilder:
    “Portugese and German accents”
    well, I have no idea about Portugese accents but German is quite fitting here 😉
    though I would have thought detecting accents much easier when spoken… but I guess some word-order or similar mistakes can be quite give-aways

  34. Can we please airlock both Lt. Scott and Chloe? Other characters are coming forward who are much more interesting and these two are just boring. Let them take their slutty act to some rock and stay there.

  35. *Greer may be. I LIKE ‘IM!!! (And he’s CUTE besides!)*

    Lol. Probably that scene where he’s stripping down right? I always saw that as symbolic. We’re born in the world naked, and he probably wanted to die the same way.

  36. *Liked Greer punching out the loudmouth.*

    Very realistic and well done scene too. He had to keep order or risk riots breaking out or something equally alarming, putting everyone at risk.

    I mean after all, if you thought you were going to die, and there’s a way out but you’re not invited, if the door was open, without someone there to put that thought out your mind you’d probably think about breaking the rules and going by force.

  37. *women shouldn’t be only sex objects*

    But they’re not in SGU, just most haven’t had a time to shine yet.

  38. @Matt Silver

    Went to your link where I found the following:

    Nominee:

    Wow, I guess politics and prostitution goes hand in hand.

    Your Response:

    Yep. Just ask Sarah Palin. (From the aptly named thread, Is Miss Armstrong A Slut?)

    ***********************************************

    The funny thing is that, while you are singling out fans for snark, you committed the exact same “crime” in reference to Palin that the fan did with Chloe …..

    😀

  39. hi, joe,

    as i’ve gently hinted at (hehe), i don’t like chloe (the actress rubs me the wrong way). so, there’s some other female characters i’d like to, you know, actually see more of…

    is there anything coming up with tj, james, or wray? pleeease tell me so.

    oh, even though you’ve quite established scott/chloe :|, is there going to be anything else with scott/james?

    if you’ve picked up some sarcasm in this post, you weren’t wrong. 😛

  40. Mondschaf said:
    but I guess some word-order or similar mistakes can be quite give-aways

    Doch! (Exactly!)

    German is my third language. I’m much more fluent in Spanish.

    The Portugese phrase “mais o menhos” was used instead of “more or less” in a recent post.

  41. You know, the McDonald’s in Antigua, Guatemala should be on the list. Not only is the inside quite pretty, but from the outside sitting area there’s a view of a volcano and old ruins. Just don’t be tempted to take a stroll through the nearby cemetery; that nice stroll led to me being robbed at gunpoint. I’ve had better days.

    Antigua McD’s

    Ronald and the Volcano

  42. Hi, Joe,

    Light was one of the best hours of TV I’ve seen in a very long time. And its only the fourth episode! The drama of the lottery sequence and its aftermath left me collapsed on my sofa during the break, wiping away tears. What would I do, what would anyone do in a situation like this, whether you were a winner or a loser? Amazing.
    I’m finding all the characters (no exceptions!) more interesting every week as their personalities unfold, especially Rush, who seems to be very deep and troubled waters indeed. But everyone else seems to have their secrets, too, except perhaps Eli? And I like him for being the “what you see is what you get” guy.
    Amid all the good TV this season, SGU has already taken its place as my one “must-watch” show, the one that I watch right away and never leave on the DVR until I have time to get to it.
    High fives to the whole team!

  43. Is it just me or did I get a weird feeling when Joe said the word “Vagina”…?

    hahaha

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