Friday, May 09, 2008

"Speed Racer" Review

I haven't seen "Speed Racer", so I can't vouch for it. My interest arises for only two reasons:
  • Some people have been directed to this blog in error - they are doing Google searches for 'Emile Hirsch' and they get the YPT's 'Emily Hirsch' by mistake; and,
  • There is a great review panning the movie at the Wall Street Journal. Here are some excerpts:
This toxic admixture of computer-generated frenzy and live-action torpor succeeds in being, almost simultaneously, genuinely painful -- the esthetic equivalent of needles in eyeballs -- and weirdly benumbing, like eye candy laced with lidocaine. "The Matrix" gave us the trippy pleasure of bullet time, a super-slo-mo vision of the world. "Speed Racer" gives us the paradox of a drive time that's super-fast and all but interminable. If its target audience turns out in vast numbers, we'll be looking at child endangerment on a global scale.

..."Speed Racer" is a nightmare vision of children's entertainment. It's overstimulation as an organizing principle -- colors that call for a riot squad (who knew that pastels could be assaultive?); pacing that approaches the precipice of looniness; a moral tale -- Speed's virtue versus the racing world's vice -- told in stentorian tones better suited to propaganda. The visual style, descended from anime, seeks to up the videogame ante, but the movie misreads that medium too. Gamers enjoy a sense of control, whether real or illusory. Audiences here must sit in passive stupefaction. "I go to the races to watch you make art," Speed's mother tells him, "and it's beautiful, inspiring, everything art should be." She lies. It's exactly what art isn't. It's chaos.
Upcoming - "Beverly Hills Chihuahua"

With Drew Barrymore as the voice of the chihuahua. I must be sleepy, because this sounds like a good idea for a flick (out in September):
While on vacation in Mexico, Chloe, a ritzy Beverly Hills chihuahua, finds herself lost and in need of assistance in order to get back home.
The Ghost Of George Wallace

In Dan T. Carter's book, "The Politics of Rage", he describes George Wallace's pride in making one of his nemeses, Tricky Dick Nixon, "dance Jim Crow" with his adoption of the Southern Strategy, pioneered by Barry Goldwater in 1964, for taking white southerners out of the Democratic party. Wallace may have lost many of the particular battles of his day, but he had the satisfaction of winning the larger war.

Wallace's legacy lives on in many ways, large and small. These days, Hillary Clinton feels the urge to dance the Jim Crow jig. I disagree with Joe Conason that she is lapsing by mistake. I think her actions are quite deliberate. Racism is like Mordor's Ring of Power, and even a reform-minded former first lady of a small southern state can't help but reach for the Ring when placed under duress:
As long as Hillary Clinton is willing to spend the money and energy needed to continue her campaign, she certainly can ignore the pundits who insist that the Democratic nominating contest is over. What she should not ignore, however, is the damage that her increasingly reckless behavior is inflicting on her reputation and that of her husband -- especially when she starts to sound like a reincarnation of the late George Wallace.

When Clinton blathered on about "totally obliterating" Iran in the event it made a nuclear strike against Israel, and then reiterated that same statement last weekend, she made what was, until then, the single most ill-considered comment of the campaign. But now USA Today has published an interview in which she explained again why she regards herself as a more viable general-election candidate than Barack Obama -- except that this time, she crossed a bright white line.

Citing an Associated Press analysis "that found how Senator Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me," she went on to say: "There's a pattern emerging here."

There is indeed a pattern emerging -- and it is a pattern that must dismay everyone who admires the Clintons and has defended them against the charge that they are exploiting racial divisions.

As Sean Wilentz and others have argued, there was no ugly subtext to her innocuous remark about the different roles of Martin Luther King Jr. and Lyndon Baines Johnson in the civil rights crusade, although several prominent Obama supporters promoted that smear. And if Bill Clinton's comparison of Obama and Jesse Jackson was badly timed and clumsy, that too fell within the bounds of acceptable commentary. Indeed, the discussion of ethnic and racial voting preferences is not only fair but unavoidable and utterly mundane in American politics.

But this time she violated the rhetorical rules, no doubt by mistake. It was her offhand reference to "working, hard-working Americans, white Americans" that raises the specter of old Dixie demagogues like Wallace and Lester Maddox. Was she dog-whistling to the voters of Kentucky and West Virginia?

While I still cannot believe she actually intended any such nefarious meaning, she seemed to be equating "hard-working Americans" with "white Americans." Which is precisely what Wallace and his cohort used to do with their drawling refrain about welfare and affirmative action. This is the grating sound of Richard Nixon's Southern strategy, even though Tricky Dick would never quite stoop to saying such things in public.

...Despite Obama's appeal to a substantial number of independents and a dwindling number of Republicans, her chances to build an Electoral College majority may well be better than his are, owing to his difficulty in attracting white working-class voters. Yet the chance to make that case where it counts, in the ballot box and the caucus room, expired many weeks ago, when Obama's skillful operatives were organizing circles around the incompetent Clinton team.

It would be awful to see the Clintons depart this campaign with the stain of racial division among Democrats as their legacy. Over the past several months they have found themselves standing against the ambitions and talents of the first black American who could become president. In a situation that demanded sensitivity and caution, both they and their associates have too often spoken and acted carelessly. That the same charge can plausibly be made against the Obama camp does not absolve them.

The tragedy is that neither Clinton carries even the slightest racial animus, as their many African-American friends and colleagues would testify, no doubt. Bill Clinton's first and most dedicated political adversary in Arkansas was "Justice Jim" Johnson, a Klan-backed Democrat turned Republican who was that state's version of Wallace. The Clintons spent years working to defeat Johnson and everything he represented, and he repaid them with years of plotting, scheming and smearing as a cog in the Arkansas Project. He hated them, first and foremost, because they represented the Democratic Party's rejection of white supremacy in the South. As governor, it was Bill Clinton who erased the last vestiges of Jim Crow from the Arkansas Constitution.
And from the Wall Street Journal:
In case you didn't get what was behind that exchange, Mrs. Clinton spent this week making it clear. In a jaw-dropping interview in USA Today on Thursday, she said, "I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on." As evidence she cited an Associated Press report that, she said, "found how Sen. Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me."

White Americans? Hard-working white Americans? "Even Richard Nixon didn't say white," an Obama supporter said, "even with the Southern strategy."

If John McCain said, "I got the white vote, baby!" his candidacy would be over. And rising in highest indignation against him would be the old Democratic Party.

To play the race card as Mrs. Clinton has, to highlight and encourage a sense that we are crudely divided as a nation, to make your argument a brute and cynical "the black guy can't win but the white girl can" is -- well, so vulgar, so cynical, so cold, that once again a Clinton is making us turn off the television in case the children walk by.

"She has unleashed the gates of hell," a longtime party leader told me. "She's saying, 'He's not one of us.'"

She is trying to take Obama down in a new way, but also within a new context. In the past he was just the competitor. She could say, "All's fair." But now he's the competitor who is going to be the nominee of his party. And she is still trying to do him in. And the party is watching.

Again: amazing.

Who can save the situation? The superdelegates.

You know them. They're the ones hiding under the rock, behind the boulder, and at the bar.

They are terrified, most of them. They want the problem to go away. They want it handled, but they don't want to do it. They don't want to tell Hillary to stop, because they would likely pay a price for it, and not just with her.

They are afraid of looking as if they're jumping on a train that's speeding down the tracks and is about to roll over the damsel in distress.

Which is how Hillary -- and her supporters -- will paint it. Even though she's no damsel, and she causes distress.

Some insight from a superdelegate I spoke to Thursday:

It's not math anymore, it's psychodrama. If she can't have it, no one can have it. If she has to tear the party apart, she will.
Mother's Day Message From The McCain Campaign

Twice as bad as this blog, because there are two old people squabbling about events no one can remember.
Failed Logo

The logo, which cost £14,000 to create for the Office of Government Commerce, was intended to signify a bold commitment to the body’s aim of:

“improving value for money by driving up standards and capability in procurement”.
Meanwhile On The Propaganda Front

Lies, lies, lies:
A plan to show some alleged Iranian-supplied explosives to journalists last week in Karbala and then destroy them was canceled after the United States realized none of them was from Iran. A U.S. military spokesman attributed the confusion to a misunderstanding that emerged after an Iraqi Army general in Karbala erroneously reported the items were of Iranian origin.
"Power Of Pride"

Yesterday, I saw one of those Lowe's red-white-and-blue "Power Of Pride" bumper stickers for the first time, and I thought it was just abysmal. The first (and most important) of the seven deadly sins matched with arrogant American nationalism - what a toxic mix!

Here is an amusing post on the subject:
I was driving through Canada the other day, a fact that in itself will leave some Republicans shocked, when I was passed by a white sedan with two "Power of Pride" bumper stickers on it. These bumper stickers are quite common because they've been distributed for free by large businesses to customers of all kinds. In the United States, you'd have to never leave your house not to have seen one of them. The design is simple, with the phrase "Power of Pride" sitting above a graphic of a waving American flag.

I'm mentioning this particular sighting of the "Power of Pride" bumper stickers because of the particular context in which they appeared: in Canada, on a car with Ontario license plates on it. Here was a Canadian, driving around Canada displaying the American flag along with references to power and pride.

What could it mean?

It could mean that this Canadian was Proud to be a citizen of the United States. The implication of this would be that there are Canadian secessionists who believe that they live in the United States, or that they ought to. Or, it could be that Canada really is, as all American tourists comment, not really a foreign country at all. Or, it could suggest that the driver of the car was delusional, believing that she was in the United States even though her car was clearly licensed in Canada.

As I watched the strangely decorated Canadian bumper driving past, I was forced to reconsider the meaning of the phrase "Power of Pride". It occurred to me that this phrase might not necessarily be meant as a compliment to the United States. Neither power nor pride is essentially a good thing. Power can be applied toward good ends, and pride can be a justifiable result of remarkable deeds. On the other hand, power can just as easily come in the form of abuse, and pride is often referred to as a form of arrogance. So, it may be that the Canadian driver I saw was engaged in a critique of the arrogant abuse of the international standards by the United States.

Really, "Power of Pride" is an awful phrase to put on a bumper sticker, if you want to make a strong and clear statement. Are we meant to understand that the driver is saying "I believe in the power of pride", or simply observing that "There is power in pride"? Combine this ambiguity with the visual image representing United States nationality, and the confusion grows stronger. Is the intended message supposed to be that "The United States is powerful because it is prideful" or that "The United States exercises power in a prideful way"?

Adding to the conflict of these counter-messages is the odd fact that the owner of this car chose to post two of these identical bumper stickers right next to each other. Imagine for a minute that you are standing on a sidewalk in a small town southwest of Toronto and some Canadian holding an American flag comes up to you and says, "Power of pride. Power of pride." What are you to make of this strange behavior? Does the repetition suggest a plural, or that the first statement is some kind of modifier on the second statement? Is there a message that we are supposed to get from seeing two of these bumper stickers together that we would not get if we only saw one?

It seemed to me that the Canadian United States nationalist felt some kind of insecurity in posting just one "Power of Pride" bumper sticker, as if she assumed that the message would not be believed unless it were repeated, in effect saying, "No. Really. I mean it. Honest."

Of course, this is all assuming that the "Power of Pride" bumper stickers were actually meant to mean anything. The more I think about it, the clearer it seems to me that this Canadian driver must have picked up a couple of free bumper stickers to solve the unfortunate problem that there are a lot of identical looking white sedans in Canadian parking lots. Putting a couple of silly stickers on the tail end of her vehicle must have been her way of overcoming an easily distractible mind.

No other explanation makes sense.
The Moon - Another Damned Hoax

Lunarists - they're worse than Scientologists:
Another impossibility that has always been an embarrassment to the scientific establishment is the obvious fact that an object as heavy as the moon, caught in the earth’s gravity, would inevitably come crashing down upon us at immense speeds. Responses to this argument from the Lunarists have always been weak, and always couched in that scientific newspeak designed to confuse the sincere questioner without actually saying anything.

The establishment most often cites the work of Isaac Newton in support of its story. Newton is well known for coming up with entirely theoretical notions such as the Law of Universal Gravitation, and his more famous Laws of Motion which serve to gloss over the more obvious inconsistencies in the moon story. What he is less known for is his "extra-curricular" pursuits, which he kept quite secret during his lifetime but which have since been uncovered. Newton was a dominating figure in the Royal Society, a fellowship riddled with members of the various secret societies whose goal to dominate the world has already been outlined. Newton himself possessed copies of Rosicrucian manifestos, and, as is evident in his notes, had studied them thoroughly. Many of his biographers suspect that he shared the religious beliefs of many of his colleagues. It does not take a genius to conclude that these beliefs may have influenced his scientific reasoning.

This is, of course, the reason why revisionists are excluded from academic institutions. The majority of scientists and professors of most universities are members of organizations such as these, as are most of the scientists who work for NASA. Those that are not realize that their livelihood depends on towing the establishment line, and therefore only a few have had the courage to speak out.

However, eminent scientists, working in defiance of the establishment, have proven conclusively, using the most scrupulous methods, that if an object such as the moon really existed, it could not remain fixed in the sky for very long. Proactive arguments in support of this finding return to a closer examination of the original mathematical formula generally referenced when rallying to solidify the moon’s improbable existence:
F = GMm/r2
Where F = gravitational attraction
G = the gravitational constant
M = mass of one body
m = mass of the second body
r = distance between the two bodies
Established by Newton himself, this numerical gem is based completely on the assumption that the moon travels in concentric circles around our planet. F (the gravitational attraction holding the moon to its "true" path) requires that r (the distance between the two celestial bodies) remains constant. Should the distance, r, decrease at any given moment, the gravitational force will increase in strength. When this event occurs the moon will be pulled towards this planet. According to Newton’s theory that a body set in motion remains in motion, such an incident would initiate a logical series of events with a singular chaotic result: propagated drawing of satellite to planet until the two massive bodies collide.

However, even the most fanatical Lunarists no longer cling to the absurd notion that objects in the solar system travel in concentric circles. These so-called "scientists" have changed their story so many times, who knows what to believe anymore? The currently fashionable dogma is that the route followed by celestial bodies is not circular but a concave oval with the origin point at the centre (in the case of the earth, the sun; in the case of the moon, the earth) followed by a spiraling series of pathways. Thus, the moon is not maintaining a constant distance from our planet. Our orbiting satellite is forever oscillating towards us, drawing near then distant, in a continuous cycle. Each successive approach brings this massive wonder closer to our midst.

In other words, the moon does indeed alter its distance from the earth. So why is it not widespread knowledge that the end – mathematically predicated BY NEWTON’S OWN FORMULA - has been anticipated and is drawing near? Due to some irrational explanation the moon has managed to defy those very laws of physics that were originally developed to justify its existence.

The authorities expect us to believe a story that is prima facie absurd, and has been proven absurd by simple mathematical calculations. Yet they do not give us a single piece of reliable forensic evidence, nor an argument put forward by any expert free from institutional pressure.
Should Have Left Well Enough Alone

Loss: $1,228.50.
C of C Mixer & YPT Outreach

Nice time at the Davis Chamber of Commerce Mixer yesterday evening, hosted this month by DMTC. Even sat in on auditions for the outreach program being run by Jeni Price. Nothing like breaking all the rules, sitting in the seats with a glass of wine, and listening to the YPT performers sing. Then afterwards, I raced off to burn the wine off in aerobics!

Jeni just sent out more about this outreach program. Publicity is an important need:
As you may know, I have been implementing an outreach program to areas schools. We offer Beginning and Advanced Teen-Led Musical Theater Workshops. I also coordinate sporadic outreach (in the form of providing entertainment) to non-profit community groups - like Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) and Yolo Foster Parents. I find these activities fairly easy to put on, extremely well-received, fun for all, and an excellent community service opportunity for our youth.

I am committed to continuing these activities for the next season, but I am looking for like-minded helpers in these endeavors. Currently Jan helps lead both the beginning & advanced school outreach, Mary Jo leads advanced (and I often ask her to bring music and keyboard), and parents of participating actors provide transportation and sometimes do publicity or taking of photos.

I would like to have a list of people I can go to for help in a few areas that I consider my weak points and to broaden the outreach program:

Publicity - fliers, photo or other documentation of outreaches DMTC board representation transportation technical - sound recordings & system, keyboard outreach contact/coordination with school sites help direct students at school sites for at-school productions

I also welcome anyone who would like to try their hand at these workshops - as long as you like to interact with kids, you would be successful. Feel free to come watch our next outreach on Monday May 12, leaving the theater at 8:30 am for Esparto, back by noon. On the same note, you can come watch our 30 minute training session for the Teen Outreach Leaders this Saturday from 9:15 am ish- 9:45 at the theater.

Thanks for your consideration.
Jeni Price
YPT Outreach Coordinator

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Rush Joins With The Magic Negro

Because Rush wants to get beyond the divisiveness of the primary campaign:
"I, Rush Limbaugh," Limbaugh modestly intoned on his Wednesday program, "the commander-in-chief of Operation Chaos have released Democratic superdelegates for Obama." As if any were among Limbaugh's 12 million or so listeners across the country.

"We have been successful beyond our wildest dreams," Limbaugh claimed. "Obama is no longer the Messiah."
Cindy, And The Media Spotlight

I can't imagine she'll be able to keep this stance through the campaign, heiress or not, prenup or not:
WASHINGTON (AP) - Cindy McCain says she will never make her tax returns public even if her husband wins the White House and she becomes the first lady.

"You know, my husband and I have been married 28 years and we have filed separate tax returns for 28 years. This is a privacy issue. My husband is the candidate," Cindy McCain, wife of Republican presidential nominee-in-waiting John McCain, said in an interview aired on NBC's "Today" on Thursday.

Asked if she would release her tax returns if she was first lady, Cindy McCain said: "No."
Oliver Stone's "Dubya"

Ack! What to say?

I suppose Oliver Stone and I have the same enemies and the same friends, but filmmaking should have some fidelity to history, and Oliver Stone's epics can be egregiously weak on that subject; "JFK" superlatively so, with its ludicrous conspiracy theories, and lush cinematography (and which I refuse to watch, ever, because of its lack of fidelity to truth).

This new film might be fun. It also might delve into cranky conspiracy theories: this time, likely true conspiracy theories.

Ack! What to say?

It may be a sin, but I'll watch it:
Stone is famous for courting controversy with dramas like JFK (1991) and Nixon (1995). But with W, the 61-year-old filmmaker isn't merely courting it — he's grabbing controversy by the lapels and giving it a big wet smacker. For the first time, he's turning his cameras not just on a living president but on one who'll still be knocking around the White House when the movie premieres late this year. As if that weren't provocative enough, Stone could end up releasing the film as early as October, at the height of a presidential campaign in which one of the major issues will undoubtedly be the legacy of the guy on the screen. The movie has become a lightning rod before Stone has shot a single frame. If that bootlegged script is any indication, the film will feature such flag-waving moments as the Commander-in-Chief nearly choking to death on a pretzel while watching football on TV and a flashback of him singing the ''Whiffenpoof'' song as a frat pledge at Yale, not to mention scenes in which he refers to his advisers by dorky nicknames — ''Guru'' for Condoleezza Rice, ''Turdblossom'' for Karl Rove, ''Balloon Foot'' for Colin Powell — while discussing plans for the invasion of Iraq with the coolness of a late-night poker game.

Stone has publicly promised W will be a ''fair, true portrait of the man,'' but already there are those accusing him of the politics of personal destruction — and, worse, of trying to influence the election by painting the current Republican administration as reckless doofuses (although presumptive Republican nominee John McCain makes no appearance in the script). Naturally, Stone vehemently denies all charges. ''Bush may turn out to be the worst president in history,'' he declares as he peeks into room after room. ''I think history is going to be very tough on him. But that doesn't mean he isn't a great story. It's almost Capra-esque, the story of a guy who had very limited talents in life, except for the ability to sell himself. The fact that he had to overcome the shadow of his father and the weight of his family name — you have to admire his tenacity. There's almost an Andy Griffith quality to him, from A Face in the Crowd. If Fitzgerald were alive today, he might be writing about him. He's sort of a reverse Gatsby.''

As it happens, Oliver Stone went to school with George W. Bush. They both attended Yale in the mid-1960s — until Stone dropped out and served in Vietnam — although they didn't mix in the same circles. ''If I met him there, I don't remember,'' Stone says. ''But I do remember John Kerry. He was big man on campus, head of the Political Union. I definitely remember him.'' Thirty years later, in 1998, Stone had a closer encounter with then governor Bush at a Republican breakfast. ''I don't usually go to breakfast with anybody,'' he says, ''but I wanted to prove that even though people thought I was a leftist I wanted to hear what they had to say. It was funny, though — the minute I walked in the room the sound of the silverware kind of died. People were like, 'What's he doing here? Satan has walked in.''' He laughs. ''But I met George Bush and I remember thinking that this man was going to be president. There was just a confidence and enthusiasm I'd never seen in a candidate before, especially in a Republican.''

It was another conservative — Bruce Willis — who inadvertently pushed Stone into making W. Originally, the director was planning on spending this spring in the editing room splicing together Pinkville, an ambitious drama about the notorious My Lai massacre of 1968. But last December, three weeks before shooting was set to start in Thailand, Willis pulled out of the film, and a jittery United Artists shut the production down. Suddenly jobless, Stone turned his attention to a scrappier script he and his Wall Street coscribe Stanley Weiser had been working on. Stone concluded that W could be made fast and relatively cheap (for around $30 million), with no need for unpredictable above-the-title stars or difficult international locations (Louisiana tax breaks shaved millions off the budget). ''Some movies are symphonies,'' Stone says. ''This one is a concerto.''

Judging from that early script, W can also be a lighthearted minuet one moment and a sobering dirge the next. It's not an entirely unsympathetic portrait. Toggling back and forth between Bush's hard-partying youth and his current stint as leader of the free world, it hits the high notes of the president's rise to power, but also lingers with deadpan detachment (or is that amusement?) on many of his lows. There's a scene of 26-year-old Bush peeling his car to a stop on his parents' front lawn and drunkenly hurling insults at his father (''Thank you, Mr. Perfect. Mr. War Hero. Mr. F---ing-God-Almighty!''), while another scene set a few years later finds Bush nearly crashing a small plane while flying under the influence. Some of the bits inside the White House are even more harrowing. ''Just keep your ego in check,'' Bush snaps at Cheney during one chilly exchange. ''I'm the president. I'm the decider.'' In one Strangelove-like moment, he tries to sell Tony Blair on the idea of provoking war with Iraq by flying a U.S. plane painted with U.N. colors over Baghdad, baiting Saddam to shoot it down. ''Plan B is assassinate the sonofabitch,'' Bush informs the horrified prime minister.

Stone insists that every scene in W will be rooted in truth, and that he and Weiser drew from more than 20 diverse books — although, it should be noted, some accounts may have come from disgruntled former staffers. The director acknowledges that he had to speculate on some of the dialogue and delivery. ''You take all the facts and take the spirit of the scene and make it accurate to what you think happened,'' he says. ''But if you take one speech from Cincinnati and one speech from the U.N. and turn them into one scene, who cares?'' A few people, it turns out. Even before actors have arrived on the set — even before there are any sets — debate over the movie's accuracy is already heating up. The Hollywood Reporter even asked historians, including Robert Draper, author of Dead Certain: The Presidency of George W. Bush, to vet the early script. ''My quarrel with the script isn't that it departed from factual reality here and there, but that it just misses the guy,'' Draper tells EW. ''You come away with an even more hyperbolized caricature of Bush the Cowboy President than is already out there.''

It's no secret in Hollywood that Oliver Stone movies have a knack for stirring up trouble — even his 2004 pansexual epic Alexander was threatened with a lawsuit by Greek lawyers claiming it damaged their national heritage — and not a single major studio wanted anything to do with W. ''When push comes to shove, all these media companies are chickens---,'' Stone says. ''They're all part of conglomerates.'' There may be other reasons: Movies about politics and the Iraq war have proved box office poison, and with Bush's approval rating hovering at 28 percent, there's not much reason for the studios to think the president will draw moviegoers to the multiplex. And despite Stone's three Oscars, he doesn't exactly rake in record grosses. His 2006 Nicolas Cage drama, World Trade Center, earned a respectable $70 million, but his films seldom top that domestically. In any case, W is being financed independently, with Chinese, German, and Australian funds and Lionsgate is rumored to have struck a deal to distribute it.

W didn't just make studios nervous; the script gave lots of movie stars cold feet, too. Stone denies rumors that Robert Duvall turned down Cheney. And he won't comment on reports that he's talking to Paul Giamatti about the part. But casting has clearly been challenging. ''You'd be amazed how many male stars of a certain age in Hollywood are Republicans,'' says Bill Block, CEO of QED, one of the film's producers. ''I'm not going to name names, but a lot of them just didn't want to have anything to do with it.'' According to Stone, even some of the town's young Democrats couldn't be persuaded. ''They hate Bush so much, they can't understand why I'd want to make a movie about him,'' he says. ''They hate him so much, they can't even imagine themselves playing him or playing anybody around him.''

Luckily, Josh Brolin got over his qualms — after all, his father, James, managed to play Ronald Reagan in a TV miniseries, and he's married to Barbra Streisand. ''When Oliver approached me about George Bush my initial reaction was 'Why would I want to do that?''' says the 40-year-old actor, lately on a career roll after performances in American Gangster and No Country for Old Men. ''But Oliver pointed out certain similarities I had with the character. We both have well-known fathers. We both grew up in the country. We both have strong mothers.'' Stone's pitch worked like a charm, and for the past couple of months Brolin has been driving his wife, Diane Lane, crazy, struggling to master the president's inimitable vocal style. ''I'm talking to myself all day long,'' Brolin says. ''Sometimes I'll call hotels in Texas and talk to the people at the front desk just to listen to their accents. And I've been watching a lot of video of Bush walking. It changes over the years, how he walks in his 30s, how he walks in foreign lands, before 9/11 and afterwards. People hold their emotions in their bodies. They can't fake it. Especially him.'' Elizabeth Banks, best known for turns in The 40 Year-Old Virgin and Spider-Man 3, takes a more straightforward approach to portraying First Lady Laura Bush. ''I don't want to do an impression,'' she says. ''I just want to honor her voice, her stillness, and her hairstyle.''

Donna Brazile Angry After Paul Begala's Stereotypes Comments

The guys in white suits will have to commit Hillary to the rubber room after this campaign.

It's sad to see the Clinton campaign dissolve into racist appeals as it sinks into the La Brea Tar Pit of irrelevancy.

"I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on," she said in an interview with USA TODAY. As evidence, Clinton cited an Associated Press article "that found how Sen. Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me."

Not quite so sad, of course, as watching the McCain campaign as it picks up the racist baton from Hillary's weakening grip.

Southwest Wyoming Ozone Air Pollution Problem

This is a bit of a surprise:
BOULDER, Wyo. (AP) - There isn't anything metropolitan about this tiny unincorporated town in southwest Wyoming, where a few single-family homes and a volunteer fire station stand against a skyline of snowcapped mountains.

But Boulder, with a population of just 75 people, has one thing in common with major metropolitan areas: air pollution thick enough to pose health risks.

"Used to be you could see horizon to horizon, crystal clear. Now you got this," said Craig Jensen as he gestured to a pale blue sky that he says is not as deeply colored as it used to be. "Makes you wonder what it's going to do to the grass, the trees and the birds."

The pollution, largely from the region's booming natural gas industry, came in the form of ground-level ozone, which has exceeded healthy levels 11 times since January and caused Wyoming to issue its first ozone alerts. Now the ozone threatens to cost the industry and taxpayers millions of dollars to stay within federal clean-air laws.

Sublette County is home to one of the largest natural gas reserves in North America, and it is dotted with hundreds of gas wells to supply the nation's growing demand for cleaner-burning fuel. Thousands more wells are planned for the future.

But pollution from vehicles and equipment in the gas fields - along with dust, weather and geography - have raised ozone to a level that rivals those of big cities in the summertime.

Wyoming's ozone problem comes at a time when the federal government has strengthened its ozone restrictions to better protect public health. In March, the Environmental Protection Agency set a new ozone standard of 75 parts per billion, down from 80 parts per billion.

The peak eight-hour average for ozone near Boulder reached 122 parts per billion on Feb. 21 and 102 parts per billion on March 11. By comparison, the Los Angeles area hit a peak average of 152 parts per billion last summer, and Denver recorded a peak of 98 parts per billion last July.

Failure to meet federal air-quality standards could result in mandatory pollution-cutting measures ranging from restricting wood-burning stoves in homes to placing limits on the booming oil and gas industry.
When I was at the University of Utah and working briefly with the Sierra Club there, and also later, while working here in Sacramento, I became familiar with the Salt Lake City ozone problem. Compared to the California ozone problem (with its importance of long-distance transport), the Salt Lake City problem (and likely, by extension, the problem with ozone at other Great Basin locations) is comparatively simple. Rapid oxidation of hydrocarbon precursors, with ozone maxima closely tracking the sun's elevation angle, with maxima at, or just after, noon.

To be having these problems, at this rural location, the natural gas extraction industry must be spurting vast amounts of natural gas directly into the air. Get ahold of that problem, and the air pollution problem disappears, presto.

So, what are we waiting for?
Mike Gravel Makes A Play For Obamagirl


Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Chris Matthews Satire

Gosh, Matthews wants to make you smash a beer can on your forehead:
Chris: HA! That’s amazing, Tim! God, you’re just like a GREAT TENNIS PLAYER! Always volleying back and forth with all kinds of moves. It’s amazing! Let’s bring on Senator Clinton here for a moment. Senator Clinton, don’t you think you’re just like BILL BELICHICK? Always scheming, sort of seeking out that winning edge any way you can find it? In fact, don’t you and your husband combine to represent Belichick perfectly, with your knack for evil plotting and your husband’s penchant for hot cougar tail?

Clinton: I don’t really know about that, Chris. All I really know is that we’re gonna need someone who is ready to lead this country, someone with over 35 years of experience. I also know that Jeremiah Wright is the sort of dangerous, untamed black man who could single handedly destroy this nation with his bare hands, and that his Unruly Negro Disease could have been passed on to Barack Obama at any point during his 20 years in the church. And I think white people in rural areas really need to think about that.
When Real Estate Was Hot

Ah, the good life:
At first glance, this property's purchases and sales look ordinary. It was bought for $520,000 in 2000, and it sold for $909,515 in 2008. It isn't until you go through the property records that the extraordinary nature of this property is revealed (Thank you, Brittney.) This is a long and complicated story, so bear with me.
  • This property was purchased for $520,000 on April 6, 2000. The buyer put $120,000 down and financed $400,000. It didn't take long for the kool aid to begin flowing.
  • In July of 2001, he refinanced for $500,000 taking out $100,000 of his initial equity.
  • In January of 2002, he took out a $544,000 loan taking out all $120,000 of his initial equity plus an additional $22,000.
  • In February of 2002, he took out a $30,000 stand-alone second.
  • In March of 2002, he took out a $50,000 stand-alone second.
  • In August of 2002, he took out a $67,800 stand-alone second.
  • In October of 2002, he opened a $20,000 HELOC.
  • In November of 2002, he refinanced with a $596,000 first and a $149,000 stand-alone second and presumably paid off all the other loans. At this point, his mortgage equity withdrawal stands at $345,000.
  • In January of 2003, he opened a $20,000 HELOC.
  • In January of 2004, he refinanced with a $793,600 first and a $148,800 stand-alone second.
  • In April of 2004, he refinanced again with a $940,000 first and a $176,250 stand-alone second.
  • In October of 2004, he refinanced the stand-alone second for $400,000
  • In March of 2005, he refinanced the stand-alone second for $550,000
Total indebtedness: $940,000 + $550,000 = $1,490,000.

Total Mortgage Equity Withdrawal: $1,490,000 - $400,000 = $1,090,000.

What can you say about that? Does anyone care to opine on how this was an investment or a medical issue? I think we can rule those circumstances out. Let's be real here: this guy's house was making $200,000 a year, and he took it out and spent it. It is what it is.

Lenders are stupid. What else can you say about that? How can you loan this guy so much money only to find your collateral is worth $600,000 less than the loans you made? There are bad loans, there are really bad loans, and then there are loans like this one. It boggles the mind. If this property sells for its asking price, the total loss to the lender will be $648,700 assuming a 6% commission.

I wonder how this guy is adjusting to the loss of that $200,000 a year extra income? I will bet it is not as much fun as spending it was.
The Baffling French And Their Baffling Ways

May they always stump the rest of us:

In the picture, you see the French Minister of Culture awarding a top state honour to an illustrious artist for high achievement and for enhancing the reach of the French creative arts. That's right, the decoration is being pinned on Kylie Minogue, the Australian pop singer.

The ceremony yesterday at the Ministry's headquarters in the sublime Palais Royal, beside the Louvre, is not as odd as it seems. Official France has long taken a paradoxical approach to "Anglo-Saxon" pop culture. It spends hundreds of millions of euros a year promoting the Gallic arts against the "commercial steamroller" of English-language entertainment. At the same time, it confers high-brow status on Anglo-Saxon stars and showers them with honours.

...Mitterrand's government railed against American Imperialism, yet it went on to make [comic Jerry] Lewis a Commander of Arts and Letters, the highest rank in the order that is reserved for the cultural world. There are only 50 commanders in France and worldwide. They include Clint Eastwood, Bob Dylan and of course Woody Allen, France's favourite American film-maker. Minogue became one of 450 chevaliers (knights) of the order. Other non-French members include Sharon Stone, Sylvester Stallone, Warren Beatty, Robert Redford and David Bowie.

...It's hard to image that Albanel, the quintessence of the straight-laced fonctionnaire, would have known much about Minogue, who opens a new world tour in Paris tonight. But her speech-writers did a great job.

"Princess of pop, uncontested queen of the dance floors, you are a sort of Midas of the international music scene who turns everything she touches into gold, from records to micro-shorts," the minister said. She praised Minogue's good humour, her choreographic precision and "your unbridled sensuality in your last album, X"
Minogue was acclaimed for her love of France and for choosing Jean-Paul Gaultier to design the costumes for her new tour. "France dresses you; France immortalises you; France takes care of you... and France inspires you..."

Tim Russert - 'The Nominee'

Here it comes!

"Don't You Think She Deserves A Steak Dinner?"

After an initial slide, I got real lucky Tuesday night, at three different tables, including one where a woman was wearing a crew jacket for a Bollywood film called "Love Has No Language", recently filmed in New Zealand (a family member apparently was on the crew). If she hadn't been quite so reckless with her bets (definitely a relative concept in a casino) she would have been lucky too.

Around midnight, with the stack of black chips growing relentlessly, I crossed an invisible threshold, where people began to take notice. The waitress called me "sweetie", a term of endearment she hadn't used before. Odd how that works. Then three women, one vaguely Hispanic and the other two vaguely East European, abruptly appeared behind me and started to do what they could to attract my favor. "Gina" began offering all kinds of betting suggestions, and asking things like "Do you live far from here?" and "Wouldn't you like to give me a lucky chip?" and pretty much becoming my cheerleader for an hour. The pretty girl sidled close and pointed to the homely girl and asked "Don't you think she is pretty? Don't you think she deserves a steak dinner?" My inside voice said something churlish like "Jenny Craig might be more suitable," but my outside voice said something idiotically pan-celebratory, like "Steak dinners for everyone!" Everyone else at the table, who had been loudly demonstrative just minutes before, since we were all winning, all reacted to the women's intrusion by donning Sgt. Schultz "I know n-o-t-h-i-n-g" poker faces, and clammed up despite the continued wins.

Pretty danged funny....

On my way out the door, I caught a glimpse of the pretty Vietnamese restauranteur who has been there on three of my visits this last month. She was sitting in her favorite chair at her favorite table, but looking awfully forlorn. If anyone in this joint deserved a steak dinner, it was her.

Win: $3,137.50, minus initial stake of $620.00, minus $30.00 credit card fee = $2,487.50.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Indiana Vote Close

Clinton might still carry it, but Gary isn't reporting yet.
Al Gore On Cyclone Nargis

Al Gore says it was Global Warming:
“And as we’re talking today, Terry, the death count in Myanmar from the cyclone that hit there yesterday has been rising from 15,000 to way on up there to much higher numbers now being speculated,” Gore said. “And last year a catastrophic storm from last fall hit Bangladesh. The year before, the strongest cyclone in more than 50 years hit China – and we’re seeing consequences that scientists have long predicted might be associated with continued global warming.”

Gore claimed global warming is forcing ocean temperatures to rise, which is causing storms, including cyclones and hurricanes, to intensify.

“It’s also important to note that the emerging consensus among the climate scientists is although any individual storm can’t be linked singularly to global warming – we’ve always had hurricanes,” Gore said. “Nevertheless, the trend toward more Category 5 storms – the larger ones and trend toward stronger and more destructive storms appears to be linked to global warming and specifically to the impact of global warming on higher ocean temperatures in the top couple of hundred feet of the ocean, which drives convection energy and moisture into these storms and makes them more powerful.”
Indeed, Global Warming could affect the strength of hurricanes, since these storms are particularly sensitive to surface sea temperatures. Nevertheless, the consensus that Gore claims is emerging has not yet emerged. That is because there are other factors, such as wind shear, that are just as important as sea surface temperature, yet less-closely linked to greenhouse gases. And increasing storm strength in one ocean basin can be offset by declining storm strength in other ocean basins - not the sort of effect one would expect from a global perturbation. In my view, the climatic record we have is not long enough yet to go around making categorical statements regarding storm strength and Global Warming.

I thought it was very unfortunate that Laura Bush decided to play politics by criticizing the Myanmar government at this time. Those dictators are a sorry bunch of toads, of course, but new criticism will just delay aid from reaching the people who need it most. A respectful approach could help open the region to the outside world, however, like it did for the Aceh region of Indonesia, as a result of international aid flowing for the victims of the 2004 Tsunami, but asking the Bushies to rein in their contempt for the rest of the world for a minute seems beyond them. Don't the Bushies get it? For each harsh word, someone dies needlessly, *right now*. But then, the Bush Administration's approach to the 2004 Tsunami was equally bad, if not worse, with the U.S. offering laughably-small amounts of money to assist until quite late. It's time for Laura to shut her piehole and get to work.

What I thought was unusual about the Myanmar Cyclone was that it occurred in the month of May. Northern Hemisphere hurricanes, even in the tropics, are unusual in the month of May. It was unfortunate that the storm swept across the heavily-populated Irrawaddy River Delta the way it did. The storm's path, and the accompanying storm surge, were almost ideal for causing the maximum possible amount of damage.
A Defense Of Taco Trucks

From those who insist on outlawing them:
Last week, led by Gloria Molina, the L.A. County Board of Supervisors passed a law basically outlawing taco trucks, making it a crime for them to linger at one location for more than an hour, punishable by a $1,000 fine or up to six months in prison. (An old law directed trucks to move every half-hour, but the fine was low and the law largely ignored.) Taco trucks, at least the better-known ones, tend to be anchored to a specific location, often outside a nightclub. (If you are on Lexington at Western, you are eating at El Matador; if on Eagle Rock south of York, probably at Rambo’s Tacos.) Owners of brick-and-mortar restaurants are always complaining about unfair competition from vendors with lower overhead and fewer taxes to pay, although most of the really successful trucks seem to flourish in neighborhoods without many restaurants: on industrial strips, along stretches dominated by auto shops, light manufacturing and discount upholsterers. California has seen squabbles like this before — it took extensive legal action to get taco trucks back on the streets of Salinas after restaurant owners there managed to get them banned.

But if you have followed taco trucks for any length of time, you have noticed the time-honored progression of cooks moving from street cart to taco truck to full-fledged restaurant. And some people actually prefer the trucks.
"Kenny" Coming

I saw this movie on the flight to AU in 2006, and it's very charming. Given the engine noise, subtitles would have been a good idea, and they will include some for the American audience. The two very attractive women next to me on the flight told me that Australia is full of men just like Kenny - whimsically funny and down-to-earth.

The scene I like best is when Kenny and co-workers mount a desperate defense of a row of their company's port-a-potties, to keep them from being burned to the ground, in a post heavy-metal rock concert ritual:

AUSTRALIAN comedy Kenny will make its US debut during America's summer blockbuster season. The independent comedy will be released in the US on July 11, almost two years after it hit Australian screens in August 2006.

It will debut on screens across the US on the same day as two of the season's biggest blockbusters, Hellboy 2 and Journey to the Centre of the Earth.

Australian actor Shane Jacobson, who won an AFI award for playing the film's titular toilet titan, will go up against Hollywood superstars Eddie Murphy (Meet Dave), Josh Hartnett (August) and Brendan Fraser (Journey to the Centre of the Earth) as the four leading men compete at the box office during the opening weekend for their films.

"I am bewildered and humbled," Jacobson, 38, said yesterday of his A-list company. "I'm just glad I'm not going up against them in a running race because I think they'd be a lot fitter than me."

His brother Clayton, who directed the film and the upcoming Channel Ten television series Kenny's World, said the American release had been a long time coming for the pair.

"I have been wanting to make films since I was nine years old so the idea of our humble, little film playing alongside Eddie Murphy is fantastic," Clayton, 44, said.

Hype about the quirky mockumentary, which has some sections subtitled to help American audiences understand certain phrases, has already begun, with The New York Times dubbing it "an Australian comedy about the world of portable toilets and the perils of waste management".

The film was shown a month ago at a special advance screening in Louisville, the city that was hosting the Pumper and Cleaner Expo, and Kentucky's Courier-Journal newspaper gave the comedy a thumbs up, with the headline "Kenny remains sweet despite stinky subject".

Jacobson, who is in the midst of an eight-shows-a-week schedule for musical Guys and Dolls, said he was disappointed not to make it to the US for the film's debut.

The two brothers have a busy schedule of phone interviews with US publications ahead of the film's release.

Kenny's US release comes a week before the premiere of new Batman film Dark Knight, Heath Ledger's final completed movie, and the screen adaptation of hit musical Mamma Mia!, starring Meryl Streep.
Raccoon Paranoia

Sparky and I were making our normal late-night walk along 21st Street (these days, the best place to meet strange and exotic locals) when suddenly a bicyclist riding on the sidewalk came bursting from the darkness. His appearance was so abrupt I had to jump out of the way. He was about 21 years old and he had a skull emblem of some sort on his sweat shirt. As he passed, he shouted: "There is a raccoon right behind me!" Then, just as quickly, he vanished into the night.

Instantly, I knew he must be right. Raccoons are all about the neighborhood these days - I've watched them from the distance make evasive maneuvers to avoid Sparky and myself. But where was the raccoon? It was hard to see under the tree canopy next to the cemetery.

As I made my way forward along the darkened sidewalk to investigate, I presented Sparky with a dilemma. Should he follow his master along the sidewalk into what might be a mammalian danger zone, or should he instead turn right, down the alley, down the time-worn groove of the standard walk to get back home? Not much of a choice, really. Sparky shrugged his shoulders (if dogs can do such a thing) and headed down the alley towards the safety of home. I cut short my foray to be with him, and never saw the relentless raccoon lurking (no doubt) somewhere in the bushes beside the cemetery.
RIP, Irvine Robbins

With his penchant for innovative ice cream flavors.
"Barackula - The Musical"

So, this is what goes on in the Ivy League!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Diversification, and Its Ills

Vegas suffering from a plague of non-gamblers:
According to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA), Las Vegas has seen gambling revenues fall only once since 1970: in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terror attacks they dropped 1 percent in 2002 from 2001. So far this year they've fallen 4 percent, the number of conventions held has dropped 10.4 percent, and average daily room rates were off 3.8 percent in the first two months of 2008, according to the most recent data available. Visitor volume was up 1.2 percent through February, but market analysts say that's because of the extra day provided by this being a leap year; March's figures will likely put the year-to-date numbers in negative territory. The stock price of MGM Mirage, owner of Bellagio, Mirage and eight other Strip resorts, has halved, from $100.50 in October to about $49 on Friday. In recent weeks the company eliminated 440 middle management jobs to save $75 million annually. "We made a structural change in our company to become more efficient and provide the same level of service, but we did have to advance that effort because we were also seeing a softening in the marketplace," says MGM Mirage spokesman Alan Feldman.

What's leaving Las Vegas more susceptible to this economic crisis than to previous ones? Diversification. Roughly 60 percent of the Las Vegas Strip's revenues now come from nongaming activities. By contrast, in 1991 and 1992, when the last comparable slowdown occurred, nongaming activities provided just 42 percent of overall revenue. "This is different from prior downturns," says Bill Lerner, a Deutsche Bank gaming-sector analyst. "Now that there are a lot more nongaming amenities, the visitation mix is leaning toward nongamblers, and the consumer coming to Vegas is different now than it was."

It doesn't help that the city's convention business is slipping. Several annual conventions have seen fewer attendees show up and have seen those who do come stay for shorter periods. For example, last week's National Association of Broadcasters confab attracted 105,000 registrants, down from 111,000 in 2007, according to NAB executive vice president Chris Brown. Those figures could have been worse, Brown says, but advance registrations were so far down that several hotel-casinos voluntarily offered to cut room rates by $10 or more to encourage attendance. Says Brown, "That's never happened before."

The Frankstons aren't the only vacationers staying away. Nearly 7 percent fewer cars crossed the Nevada-California border along Interstate 15 through February, reflecting in part that record-high gasoline prices are curtailing drive-in visitors from the largest neighboring state. Making matters worse, three airlines with substantial service to Las Vegas—Aloha, ATA and Champion—are going out of business.

Even the mortgage mess and the subsequent credit crunch have taken a toll on Vegas. Several major construction projects on the Strip are delayed due to financing problems, including a second tower for Donald Trump's new condo-hotel. Also delayed is a plan to build a $6 billion version of New York City's famed Plaza Hotel. And while construction continues on the half-built $3 billion Cosmopolitan Resort and Casino next to the Bellagio, the project may be in jeopardy after developer Bruce Eichner's company defaulted on a $760 million loan from Deutsche Bank.

...Like other major U.S. cities, Las Vegas is banking on the Euro-rich to help out during these tough times. According to Robert LaFleur, a gaming-stock analyst for Susquehanna Financial Services, "Bachelor parties in Vegas are now all the rage for soon-to-be-wed fellows from Australia and the U.K., for instance, because it's so cheap to get there … Right now it's an easy sell to get people from overseas."
Doggie Dukie

I heard him before I saw him in the darkness - a muscular young man, about 22 years old, running south down the sidewalk towards City College. Despite his muscular build, his panting breath revealed a lack of conditioning - he was spending too much time with the weights and not enough time on the track. His pants also revealed the alcohol in his system.

"What's that?" he said, as he pointed at the pooper scooper in my right hand. "Is that a doggie dukie?" I shook his beefy, sweaty hand. "Name's Mike," he said. "I love dogs, and - is that him?" At that moment he saw Sparky, who had been snuffling in the darkness at the base of a palm tree. "I just love dogs - got one of my own - they are just the best!" Then he ran away, southbound again, panting hard through the night, homeward bound, where a dog waited for his master....
"American Tapestry" - Woodland Chamber Singers

Left: Sally Forment (at far left) introduces "He Is Not Here" by Russell Nagy.

Left: Bob Edmondson at left leads "I've Been Working On The Railroad", the first song of a four-song sing-a-long.

I've been working on the railroad, all the live-long day.
I've been working on the railroad, just to pass the time away.
Can't you here the whistle blowing, rise up so early in the morn,
Don't you hear the captain shouting, "Dinah, blow your horn!"

Left: Olivia Kraft (fourth from left) sings a solo in "Tis A Gift To Be Simple"

Left: Artistic Director Tracia Barbieri, at left, leads bows.

I'm glad that Bob Dylan's "Blowin' In The Wind" (the second-to-the-last song of the program) is now so familiar (protest politics notwithstanding) that it has now found a permanent home in America's folk-music repertoire.
"Pajama Game" - Sunday Pictures

Left: "Steam Heat". Lauren Miller, Jabriel Shelton, Kris Farhood (obscured).

Below: "Steam Heat". Lauren Miller and Jabriel Shelton (both obscured), and Kris Farhood.

Left: "Steam Heat". Lauren Miller and Jabriel Shelton (both obscured), and Kris Farhood.

Below: Jonathan Cagle-Mulberg and Amber Jean Moore.

Left: Babe Williams (Amber Jean Moore).

Below: Hines (Herb Shultz) and Mabel (Dannette Vassar).

Left: Hines (Herb Shultz), Gladys (Lauren Miller), Max (Michael McElroy), Mr. Hasler (Dustin White, obscured), Sid Sorokin (Joshua Smith), and Mabel (Dannette Vassar, obscured).

Left: Lisa Curtis, Stacey Sheehan (obscured), Kristine Hager, Cari Porter, McKinley Carlisle, Amanda Yount, Sarah Pivonka (obscured), and Amber Jean Moore.

Left: Lisa Curtis (obscured), Sarah Pivonka, Kristine Hager, Cari Porter, McKinley Carlisle, Stacey Sheehan (obscured), and Amanda Yount.
The Empire Strikes Barack

May the force be with you!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Doug Nering And Friends

Visit the Grand Canyon.

"Pajama Game" - Friday & Saturday Night Pictures

Left: Sid Sorokin (Joshua Smith) and Babe Williams (Amber Jean Moore).

Below: Babe Williams (Amber Jean Moore) and Sid Sorokin (Joshua Smith).

Left: Amber Jean Moore, Jan Isaacson, Lisa Curtis, John Ewing, Jabriel Shelton, and Jonathan Cagle-Mulberg.

Left: Gladys (Lauren Miller) and Sid Sorokin (Joshua Smith).

Left: Amber Jean Moore and Jonathan Cagle-Mulberg.

Left: Amber Jean Moore, Jonathan Cagle-Mulberg, and Joshua Smith.

Left: "Time Study Man"

Left: "Time Study Man"

Below: Gladys (Lauren Miller), Mr. Hasler (Dustin White), and Mabel (Dannette Vassar).

Left: "Slow Down"