Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Movie Clip Wednesday - Movie I'd Like to Star In

With Boxer still missing in action, the Milk River Madman is graciously continuing to host the Movie Clip Wednesday Meme where everyone picks a clip from their favorite movies based on a weekly theme. This week's theme is THE ROMANTIC COMEDY YOU WOULD HAVE LIKED TO STAR IN. Can the theme name get any longer? The Madman thinks this is a tough one for me. To him I say - pshaw! Your in my world now.

I've actually thought (fantasized) about this topic on my own before the Madman threw down the gauntlet. And after banging my head on the keyboard for a couple of minutes, it came back to me. One of the greatest scenes ever filmed (not rated X). I will concede that it's not much of a comedy although you could make the argument that anything Matt Dillon stars in is a comedy. Guys, you know the movie I'm talking about, 1998's Wild Things starring Matt Dillon, Denise Richards and Neve Campbell. Relax ladies, this clip ends at the really good part. But you asked, so I'm telling you that I would like to play Sam Lombardo so I can be in the middle of that Denise and Neve sandwich (ooooh, I smell a culinary smackdown theme).

So, I'm guessing there's going to be a lot of Cary Grant, Richard Gere, Spencer Tracy and Antonio Banderas clips over at the Madman s. So go on over but check your testosterone at the door.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Culinary Smackdown - Summer Vegatables

This month's Culinary Throwdown Challenge is being sponsored by Intuitive Eggplant and the theme is SUMMERTIME VEGETABLES. IE was last month's Picnic Smackdown winner (by a country mile) and will also be judge, jury and executive chef. IE asked us to take inspiration from our own gardens and to really stretch our culinary skills. So I will partially do that. First, here's what our garden looked like last weekend.

I'm not sure what kind of eggplant this is, but it isn't quite ready yet, so I bought some Italian eggplant from the local Produce Junction for my 1st dish. We have Early Girls, Beefsteaks and a couple other types of tomatoes that are not shown in the picture and those are what I will use for my 2nd dish.

It was my intention to pair these two dishes together for a nice, mostly vegetable dinner. Of course it didn't work out that way. I had to do the Grilled Eggplant Salad a week early and serve it as a side with another dinner. And for the life of me I can't find the recipe link. I'll do it from memory because it's pretty simple.

I peeled and cut the eggplant into rounds and coated with olive oil, salt and pepper.

I grilled them for about 4 minutes per side. You gotta love the grill marks (and I love my Weber grill).

While they were grilling, i mixed up some red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper. I diced up the grilled eggplant and mixed it all up. It came out really good and the Mrs and kids were okay with it.

For my next dish I did a simple fried tomato. The stretch here is that I used Panko bread crumbs instead of Italian bread crumbs. Yeah, I know but it's a stretch for me. I also fry up bacon first so I have bacon grease for the tomatoes. This was the way my mom made them. The kids don't like these so more for me.

Bacon is the first thing I did. Shamu, I'm looking in your direction.

These were excellent with the panko bread crumbs. I will definitely do this again.

This throwdown promises to have huge participation, so swing on over to Intuitive Eggplant to see the rest of the vegetables.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Visual Haiku - Fruits of Summer

Tomato Season

Fruit/vegetable paradox?

Don't know, good Smackdown?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Movie Clip Wednesday - Worst Movie Ending

Looks like Boxer may never come back as hostess (but at least she's back playing), so the Milk River Madman is graciously continuing to host the Movie Clip Wednesday Meme where everyone picks a clip from their favorite movies based on a weekly theme. This week's theme is WORST MOVIE ENDINGS. This is kind of tough to write about without spoiling the ending. I'll give it a whirl but I'm going to leave out a lot of plot details.

A movie that immediately comes to mind (and it's a little, obscure Indy film) is 2003's Swimming Pool. It stars Charlotte Rampling as a murder mystery writer who goes on vacation in France. It also features Ludivine Sagnier who is unbelievably hot (and very naked) in this movie. For all you Mr. Skin fans out there, this movie has some great nudity including Rampling, who was in her late 50s at the time. By the time you get to the end of this movie though, you will have no idea what actually happened or what is true or made up in the mind of Rampling's character.

After I saw this movie, I went on IMDB and other chatboards to see if I missed something. Turns out I got it right. Everyone else was as confused as I was. There are a number of theories on what happened including analysis of room colors where different events happen up to dream sequences and conspiracies. I liked this movie with a lot of quirky, odd things and scenes - up until the end. I like movies that leave a little something to the imagination, but this left the whole ending to the imagination. I don't want to have to work that hard for my entertainment.

Here's the trailer because I couldn't find the ending:

I will definitely recommend that you watch it because the acting, storyline, the French countryside and nudity is very good, but be prepared to be confused at the end.

Wanna see more loser endings, then go over and see the Madman . He may actually leave you with a happy ending.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Buzz and the Monsters vs. Cheap Trick

So we're sitting around the pool with some friends last Friday and the subject of concerts came up. My buddy says Cheap Trick and Squeeze are coming to the Mann Music Center in Philadelphia next week and we should all go. The Mrs (surprisingly) is up for this and she wants to take the Boy and the Pudge. I said "OK hon, get the tickets". The Mrs tells the boys and they're stoked for it. The Boy has been to a couple of local concerts including Paul Rodgers this past 4th of July. This would be the Pudge's first concert. Fine.

Well, come Sunday, my buddy and his family bailed and the Mrs tells me she has to take her sister out that night for her sister's 50th birthday dinner. That leaves me (set up) taking the boys. So I buy 3 tickets and I'm set for this Friday.

Now, my across-the-street neighbor has always maintained that he was a roadie for Cheap Trick about 10 years ago and still stays in touch with them. The Boy tells him we're going to the concert and he says he is too and can get us backstage. I say "fine" but I'm skeptical.

We get to the Mann around 7:00PM for a 7:30PM show. Not a big crowd (maybe 8 - 10,000) and the Mann is an outdoor amphitheater with covered and lawn seating. We have tickets in the 2nd section back about 125 feet from stage. Pretty good seats I think. So we take our seats and get ready for the opening act - Squeeze. Low and behold, there's my neighbor and he comes up and gives us three of these and says to meet him on the left side of the stage at 8:25:

Fuckin' Awesome.

Squeeze comes on and I know Black Coffee in Bed, Annie Get Your Gun and Cool for Cats. Surprisingly, so does the Boy and he's only 17. There are a lot of Squeeze fans in the audience and, from overhearing conversations, a lot of British accents. The Pudge is a little bored because he doesn't know any of the songs but is kind of mesmerized by the spectacle surrounding him. Interestingly, I don't smell any pot and notice quite a few families. Not the concerts I remember from 20 plus years ago.

So, at 8:25 we meet my neighbor at the designated place with about a dozen other people and are escorted into a small room (full of laundry machines and bad lighting as you will see) and in walks - Rick Nielsen and Tom Petersson. Are you fuckin' kidding me.

Here are the bad telephone camera pictures to prove it:

Both Rick and Tom talked to us for about 10 minutes. Rick "anointed" each of the boys with a guitar pick to the forehead. The guitar Tom is holding is one of two like it in the world. He said the manufacturer but I forget. And you can't see it but the shirt Rick is wearing is a Beatles shirt. We wished them luck and took our seats.
This is the view we had from our seats:

This is the view we had when the Boy took the Pudge up front, then came back and got me. We were there for about 15 minutes until security made us leave. We went to another place for a few minutes that was even closer to the stage (about 20 feet). Awesome. Rick has about a thousand guitar picks taped to his mic stand he constantly tosses them into the stands like death stars. It's pretty cool. He also brought out his trademark 5-neck Hamer guitar.

They did a lot of their old stuff mixed in with some new songs. My neighbor had told me that Rick was a huge Beatles fan and they did a cover of Magical Mystery Tour. They didn't do She's Tight, which is a personal favorite of mine.

Their finale was Dream Police and it was very much like this clip I lifted from a January 2010 concert down in Atlantic City. Same stage setting but what we heard sounded much better.

The boys (me included) had a great time. The Mrs was a little disappointed when we told her of our adventures. I told the Pudge that every concert he goes to from here on out will probably be a disappointment after this. He agreed.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Visual Haiku - Gulf Oil Spill

Terrorist for oil.
British law soft on crime as
BP wheels and deals.

A little off topic but I sort of did this theme a few weeks ago.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Movie Clip Wednesday - Favorite Movie Theme Song

Looks like Boxer is still on extended, double-secret sabbatical and the Milk River Madman is graciously continuing to host the Movie Clip Wednesday Meme where everyone picks a clip from their favorite movies based on a weekly theme. This week's very last minute theme is FAVORITE MOVIE THEME SONGS. Being a big Clint Eastwood fan, I immediately thought of the theme from The Good, The Bad and The Ugly by Italian composer Ennio Morricone. Not only are there few words to remember (more like Italian, inaudible cheers) but it was also the theme song for the Ramones and they opened all their concerts with it.

Nah, too easy. So I went with a similar instrumental piece (with a few California Surfer Dude, inaudible cheers). Dick Dale's "Miserlou" from 1994's Pulp Fiction is a cool, surfer guitar-riffing machine gun that immediately brings the movie to mind no matter where you hear it. Curiously, Miserlou means "Egyptian Girl" and came from a Greek folk-dance song from the early 1900s (kind of like La Bamba). I love the movie and I love the theme.

Special mention also goes to another Quentin Tarantino film, Kill Bill Volume 1. The Green Hornet theme by Al Hirt and "Battle Without Honor or Humanity" by Tomoyasu Hotei are also great instrumentals. Probably what I like most about Tarantino films is the music.

Wanna hear more great, movie theme songs, then go over and see the Madman . He'll leave music (and voices) in your head all the day long.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Movie Clip Wednesday - Best Actress of the 1970s

Looks like Boxer is on an extended sabbatical and the Milk River Madman is graciously continuing to host the Movie Clip Wednesday Meme where everyone picks a clip from their favorite movies based on a weekly theme. This week's theme is BEST ACTRESS OF THE 1970s. This theme was way tougher than I thought it would be - and here's why. The first thing I did was look up Best Actress Oscar winners from the 1970s. Here they are:

1970 Best Actress Glenda Jackson for "Women in Love"

1971 Best Actress Jane Fonda for "Klute"

1972 Best Actress Liza Minnelli for "Cabaret"

1973 Best Actress Glenda Jackson for "A Touch of Class"

1974 Best Actress Ellen Burstyn for "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore"

1975 Best Actress Louise Fletcher for "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest"

1976 Best Actress Faye Dunaway for "Network"

1977 Best Actress Diane Keaton for "Annie Hall"

1978 Best Actress Jane Fonda for "Coming Home"

1979 Best Actress Sally Field for "Norma Rae"

Jeez, Jane Fonda, Liza Minnelli and Glenda Jackson - really? Are those my choices? Well, upon further inspection, I saw Sally Field on the list. Now, I thought she was pretty hot in Smokey and the Bandit and Hooper (I was in my mid-teens for christs sake). But it was Norma Rae that put her on the movie radar and that led to a bunch of other movies that I liked including Forrest Gump, Mrs. Doubtfire and Places in the Heart (Does that make me gay? Madman?). This is one of my favorite scenes from Norma Rae:

And lest we forget that she started her career in TV with Gidget and one of my favorite TV shows when I was like 8 years old - the Flying Nun. A big deal for an 8 year old Catholic School boy.

Wanna see more hot, 70s chicks (that are now in their 70s), then go over and see the Madman .

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Visual Haiku - Patriotism

Man-made disaster
Threatens Nat'l Security
Yacht can drag boom.