LikeTelevision Blog

Friday, March 20, 2009

First Day of Spring

HOORAY - March 21 +/- a day marks the time when the sun’s direct rays move into the northern hemisphere (which is where we hang out) and as such, marks the first day of spring. Like a Vernal Equinox, 'eh? Since LikeTelevision is from North Carolina - we always take this opportunity to watch Granny’s Spring Tonic, where Granny cooks up the seasons first batch of “shine” - what we call moonshine round here. Peaches, strawberries, plums or other fruits are floating in a super sweet brown liquid stored in a ball jar. Now before the folks at ATF get all riled up and bring Janet Reno out of retirement with her flame thrower - it is all gone. A very good year too. I think Granny is hitting the jug a little quick as the shine tastes best about 2 years after it is brewed. And since we live near Mooresville, the true home of Nascar and moonshine running drivers from days gone by - yep, we do have a clue.

More spring related content, Maybe I’ll Come Home in the Spring, featuring Sally Field as a washed up hippie who decides to come home after the commune style of life wears thin. See David Carradine as real turkey and Jackie Cooper is the tough but loving father, well kind of. He is also a bit older from early Hollywood days with the Little Rascals (see Bear Shooters for a sample).

Another fun cartoon - is To Spring, where some crazy elves use all kinds of colors to paint the landscape. And who could forget the Raggedy Ann classic, Suddenly It’s Spring. Finally - check out Betty Boop doing a bit of spring cleaning.

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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bud the Cowboy

I got the following story in an email and thought it was actually funny enough to read and pass on. It is called Bud the Cowboy.

A cowboy named Bud was overseeing his herd in a remote mountainous pasture in California when suddenly a brand-new BMW advanced toward him out of a cloud of dust. The driver, a young man in a Brioni suit, Gucci shoes, RayBan sunglasses and YSL tie, leaned out the window and asked the cowboy, "If I tell you exactly how many cows and calves you have in your herd, Will you give me a calf?"

Bud looks at the man, obviously a yuppie, then looks at his peacefully grazing herd and calmly answers, "Sure, Why not?"

The yuppie parks his car, whips out his Dell notebook computer, connects it to his Cingular RAZR V3 cell phone, and surfs to a NASA page on the Internet, where he calls up a GPS satellite to get an exact fix on his location which he then feeds to another NASA satellite that scans the area in an ultra high resolution photo.

The young man then opens the digital photo in Adobe Photoshop and exports it to an image processing facility in Hamburg, Germany. Within seconds, he receives an email on his Palm Pilot that the image has been processed and the data stored.. He then accesses a MYSQL database through an ODBC connected Excel spreadsheet with email on his Blackberry and, after a few minutes, receives a response.

Finally, he prints out a full-color, 150-page report on his hi-tech, miniaturized HP LaserJet printer, turns to the cowboy and says, "You have exactly 1,586 cows and calves."

"That's right. Well, I guess you can take one of my calves," says Bud.

He watches the young man select one of the animals and looks on with amusement as the young man stuffs it into the trunk of his car.

Then the Bud says to the young man, "Hey, if I can tell you exactly what your business is, will you give me back my calf?"

The young man thinks about it for a second and then says, "Okay, why not?"

"You're a Congressman for the U.S. Government", says Bud.

"Wow! That's correct," says the yuppie, "but how did you guess that?"

"No guessing required." answered the cowboy. "You showed up here even though nobody called you; you want to get paid for an answer I already knew, to a question I never asked. You used millions of dollars worth of equipment trying to show me how much smarter than me you are; and you don't know a thing about how working people make a living - or about cows, for that matter. This is a herd of sheep.

Now give me back my dog.

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Friday, March 13, 2009

Skooter Goes to Black Mountain

Skooter is back home again from Asheville and Black Mountain on his journey for Lent, to do some video mixing for a live music performance from Buzz from Ohio, with his buddy Chris. Produced by Dr Barre, audio engineer Frank Random, and special thanks to Jake working camera, light director, & audio second. Hey, he's young and still has the energy and umm, colorful language too. What's not to like? He works very hard.

Check out the new picture album for Asheville too. Not only a bunch of new photos from the road, but a bunch of code dialed in thanks to Brad, our resident code yoda.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Robot Sweatshop Podcast: "Watchmen" Movie Review & Discussion

Hi folks,

In addition to my pop culture ramblings here at Like Television, I also host a pop culture themed podcast called Robot Sweatshop. Since we've had some discussions and posts here about movies and comics, I thought I'd let you know about our newest episode, which may be of interest.

Co-host Chris Bacolo, special guest Jen Giarratana, and myself sit down for a discussion on Watchmen, the film and the comic, minutes after seeing the movie for the first time. I've read the comic twice; Chris finished reading it literally just before seeing the film; and Jen has never seen or read even a panel of it.

Three points of view. But are there three different verdicts on the film? Listen and find out.

Here are some handy links, if you're interested:

Download this episode

Discuss this episode

Subscribe at iTunes

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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Scooter is Alabama Bound

Check out the Scooter's journey during Lent. Today... Alabama Bound. You can track him as he rolls down the highway, just send a request to track at and wait for a bit fro Scooter to approve you. After approval, go to and click the igoogle link in the upper right corner of the page to see a map, with Scooter updates as he heads down the road.

You can also read about the trip at: Happy Trails.

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Sunday, March 1, 2009

Cinematic Titanic Live in Boston

Our love of all things Mystery Science Theater 3000 on this site is well documented, and that love definitely includes Cinematic Titanic, MST3K creator Joel Hodgson's new B-movie riffing venture. For Cinematic Titanic, Joel gathered several MST3K vets, including Trace Beaulieu (Crow, Dr. Forrester), Frank Conniff (TV's Frank), Mary Jo Pehl (Pearl Forrester), and J. Elvis Weinstein (the original Tom Servo). It's been great to have them back, wits as sharp, biting and hilarious as ever.

Cinematic Titanic visited Boston on February 20th and 21st as part of a live riffing mini-tour; we deemed this Too Awesome To Miss, and made the trek from Brooklyn for the Saturday show. The movie being riffed, as we learned right before it began, was a '70s Kung Fu-sploitation wonder called The Dynamite Brothers. It was racist and nonsensical and features a scene where one dude handcuffed to another manages to somehow take his shirt off. 'Nuff said.

I was curious as to how it would feel to see movie riffing done before an audience -- after all, MST3K and Cinematic Titanic are relatively quiet shows -- and whether or not it would really work.

But I need not have worried; in short, it was hilarious and an overall awesome experience. The theater was packed (I'm guessing it was sold out), and the audience was among the warmest I've ever seen. We were laughing at the riffs and at the movie itself; best of all, we got to meet the whole cast after the show, all of whom were insanely nice and took time to chat, take pictures, and sign autographs. Photo report below -- but in case you were wondering -- Cinematic Titanic live scores an easy A.

The Somerville Theatre marquee. This was a beautiful, old fashioned theater with a very warm look and feel. It was just the type of place we were hoping it would be in our pre-show, overly-excited, geeky discussions.

Inside the lobby a few minutes before showtime. The place was packed.

Comedian David "Gruber" Allen -- you might know him as the guidance counselor from Freaks and Geeks -- warms up the crowd. Dave's not a member of the Cinematic Titanic crew, but has appeared in some episodes, and was awesome.

J. Elvis Weinstein took the stage, armed with a bass, and performed a routine with Dave about a radio station that only plays the catchiest moments of songs for our short-attention span culture. The name of the station? K-ADD, of course!

Next up, Frank Conniff -- who I think is possibly one of the funniest people alive -- greets the crowd.

Joel received the biggest ovation, and even brought with him an invention exchange: a small sampler that only plays "Happy Together," torn out of a Valentine's Day card. When played by one's zipper, it creates a "party in your pants." Genius. The Mads could never top that one!

The lights go down before the Cinematic Titanic crew does what they do best.

At the end of the show, the cast bowed to a standing ovation. But they weren't done! For an encore, they performed "a best of Cinematic Titanic" to clips of the show's funniest moments, with scenes taken from every Cinematic Titanic episode. Even watching them out of context, it was very, very funny.

The line forms, which I'm all but sure included the entire #$@%ing audience, for the post-show meet-and-greet. (It actually moved at a pretty decent clip, and everyone was really friendly.)

The aforementioned line keeps going.

We finally make it to meet-and-greet area, catch a glimpse of the cast...

...and are psyched.

Me and the great Trace Beaulieu. Trace was really, really nice, and took time to actually ask me about my shirt. Are all Minnesotans this cool? (We're not used to things like "eye contact" and "friendly conversation" here in Brooklyn.)

Joel and Frank with a very happy fan. The end!