Sunday, January 31, 2010
Saturday, January 30, 2010
At least driving up here got me out of DC scant hours before the snow gridlocked the entire area. Whew!
Friday, January 29, 2010
Like 8 million shoes. Yes, that is my room...
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Short vid showing the set we had in Atlanta. It was when we saw this and the bazillion cameras that we realized it was more than a local news interview and starting crapping our pants nervously.
For two days my phone has insisted this video wasn't really there. But the hostage has been freed after I threatened to take him to a Sprint store and turn him in for a Blackberry.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
Love you guys. Mom, careful with the appliances. That was just horrifying to hear about. And not much fun to experience,m I'm bettin'.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Friday, January 15, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Dulles' new security setup makes the place more of a crazed, crammed, tense hell-broth than ever. You now descend into a fluorescent dungeon; ill-informed, short-tempered foreigners shout incomprehensible, irate, and conflicting demands at you, the usual screening rigamarole occurs until such time as you emerge, blinking, from the dungeon some 6 feet and 45 minutes from whence you first descended. Then you walk 2 miles, hop a slow-moving bus, and walk 2 miles more. "Dulles: Now with double the inconvenience!" Blearghhhh....
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Monday, January 11, 2010
The first known use of a 'ghost light' was back in the late 1800's. The Tivoli Regardi,* a fashionable upscale theatre in St. Louis, was experiencing a downturn in business and --as a consequence-- was just beginning to host what were called, 'Playbills': a form of entertainment that would eventually evolve into full-scale vaudeville.** The performers of these early skits and songs were called 'Pagemays' and were a simple and superstitious bunch. The term 'Pagemay' seems to have come from the the French 'ne paye jamais' which translates roughly as 'never pays', which would make sense as they were, after all, actors.*** Curiously, we get our term 'pajama' from the same phrase and people, who often wore colorful patterned clothing when sneaking out without paying late at night.****
The Pagemays hearkened from a simpler time, a time when there were ghosts and you appeased them in order to cement your chances of good fortune in the future. They had simple values and clear, if not altogether logical beliefs: the restorative effect of whiskey, the curative powers of strong and regular bowel movements, and that ghosts were scared of the dark. While the latter does not necessarily follow from the first two, you'd do well not to have argued the point with a late 19th-century Pagemay. They'd knock back a shot of rye, take a powerful dump, and talk your ear off.*****
In fact the three beliefs are connected. Late at night, Pagemays who had been evicted from their rented rooms for ne paye jamais would fortify themselves vigorously with whiskey and stumble into the darkened theatre for some place to assuage their digestive imperatives. Like as not, in the oppressive dark of the deserted theatre these lurching time bombs would plunge into the orchestra pit where any number of difficult-to-clean things could, and often did, happen. The ghost light and legend provided a simple and face-saving way to keep this from happening.
And it does look cool and classy. Even if no one is around to see it.
* This theatre seems to have never existed
** I am pretty sure that none of this is true
*** While amusing, this is almost certainly false
**** A blatant lie, as even the most cursory of investigations will tell you
***** All in all, a sequence of events to avoid with a stranger
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Saturday, January 9, 2010
Friday, January 8, 2010
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Dad, you woulda been proud; I did a bunch of astronomer specific lirty lines and they were eatin' outta the palm of my hand. C'mon, how many people can get a naughty laugh out of the Spitzer telescope?
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Hmmmm...there's Dave Kane, and Brian, of course...let's see.....look, there's Andy Clemence and that's Nancy Dolliver and...hmmmm, what else? Let's see... Oh yeah...that would be Apollo 11. APOLLO FREAKIN' 11 IS IN OUR BACKSTAGE. We're doing a show for the American Astronomical Society at the Air and Space Museum. This is so goshdarn cool I think I pooped myself. Oh, it's a movie, Mom, love ya!
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
...ends like a torture chamber. Checking out my truculent and uncooperative jaw. I grow weary of flattening my food so I can fit it in my mouth. Soon all I'll be able to eat will be cheese singles and that pounded Swedish chicken dish Mom used to make. Mmmm.
Real sweet case of knit-hat-head at the end. Damn this unrelenting cold! It's a movie, Mom, click the thingee...