Friday, August 29, 2008

Music Critics, gotta hate'em, part 685.3

Like an alcoholic bum stumbling down the street mumbling to himself, I have a favorite topic that I worry on when nothing else is more pressing: the savage influence of music critics on artists and the music scene in general.

So when I read this paragraph below recently, I said - to no one there (again, going with the mumbling bum metaphor): "SEE!"

Steve Miller: "In 1983, everything was pretty much over for me," says Steve Miller, smoking a cigar in a posh New York hotel room. "Bands like X were the big thing in L.A., and my work was being called unmitigated slop. I said to myself, 'I get it! I'm outta here! Stop kicking me, I'm leaving.' " For five years, Miller — who rang up hit after hit in the Seventies with ultracatchy rockers including "Fly Like an Eagle" and "The Joker" — went on hiatus. - Rolling Stone

I recently read Don Felder's biography on his time with the Eagles where he points out that the primary reason the Eagles stopped talking to the press was a Rolling Stone review.

TLD: Btw, wasn't much in the Felder book that you probably don't already know. I'd wondered why Meisner left, but it was just because Don H. and Glen F. took over the band, which had originally been a democracy. The only other fun fact was Don Felder worked at a shoe store for a brief while as a teen, but had to quit because kneeling at the feet of cute women, and (direct quote) "inhaling their scent", basically drove him nuts. I chuckled because it had never occurred to me that that particular occupation would be hard on a teenage guy.

But back to the music critic thing. Rolling Stone is notorious for having dogged Led Zeppelin, the Eagles, Steve Miller (obviously), and other names that have persevered. You'd think they'd wonder about their track record.

Now positive reviews can have some impact, but I think all bad reviews should be read only for entertainment, then consigned to the bin.

On a completely unrelated tangent, I recently borrowed Lindsey Buckingham's recent live set from the library, and lo and behold it came with a companion DVD of the concert. Tres cool.

However, on the DVD is a "documentary" Buckingham put together on his Mac, and, oh dear, what a ... document. Fully one quarter of it are slow motion shots of walking over grass or light bouncing off water and other totally stoned footage. He plays the occasional song, too, but behaves as if he's doing it at gunpoint. The scant snatches of narration come off as Marlon Brando lost way up a river somewhere. But, worst of all, he filmed himself talking with record companies and agents trying to get a record deal. Suffice to say, his solo stuff has mostly tanked and I can see why. Outside of the first album, which I liked, the rest have been just ... weird. He behaves, though, like they're turning down the guy who made one of the best albums ever (and he did), but that doesn't mean that he hasn't been all that great lately. My point is that he must not have enough self-perception to realize that putting something like that out there just kind of makes him look pathetic. The whole of the documentary made me wonder if he's lost his mind somewhat.

The music is good, though. You've heard all the songs before, in better versions. Sometimes, though, it's nice to have an alternative take on an old favorite song so you can toss it on a CD and freshen things up a bit.

While looking up the Amazon link for the live set, I see he did land a label and is kicking out a new CD in Sept. However, the cover photo and his ramblings in the "Product Description" tend to bolster my claim that perhaps Mr. Buckingham needs to get his meds readjusted.

(Final note: He did actually name an album Go Insane, so maybe he is aware that the wheel is still turning but the hamster is dead.)
Says it all: The Repo Man is Gonna Miss Bush

I've often said that modern Republicans are a LOT like Mr. Potter in It's a Wonderful Life, even though a lot of Republican politicians spin themselves as the Jimmy Stuart character. I think this video is proof in my favor.
Holy Cow, McCain Picks a MILF!

I am convinced that a McCain presidency would further scar America and drag us further into third-world-dom and wide-spread poverty, and because of that I didn't think he could come up with anything that would help him outside of the rabid Republican base.

Then he picks a MILF for veep.

Pic Source

Da-bomb-a's speech last night was transcendent, but this veep thing is quite the checkmate. It is going to be an interesting election.

Does anyone know how to become a citizen of France or Sweden, just in case?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

And now, the Republican Spin Reaction

So the wife and I watched the Hillary speech last night. My wife was really pulling for Hillary, and it helped get her "over the hump" as they say.

The thing that interested me ... well, that's not accurate ... the thing that pissed me off was every time a Democrat finished a speech, or when they would "go down to the floor", they would invariably talk to a Republican commentator. As if Democrats give a flying star-spangled fuck about what Mitt Romney thinks.

The CBS national news with Katie was guilty of this, as were the local news casts. One of the local news casts actually lined up 4 Republicans in a row to solicit commentary after asking only one question of a Democrat - and that one question was so spun the guy responding actually laughed at first, it was so Colbert-esque.

Is this new? I don't remember the past Democratic conventions essentially being turned into Republican infomercials.

Newsweek also has a slant on the wacky coverage.

Got another one of those Republican chain emails (see below for another example), so myself and two die-hard Republican buddies batted it around like a Piñata. I just had to share.

It starts with the email that has various cartoons depicting Obama as an undeserving superstar, full of empty rhetoric, and the scandalous revelation that (gasp) he and his wife have a full-time housekeeper! In other words, pretty much every thing that would apply to McCain - a favorite tactic of the Karl Rove school of sludge. And, of course, in the tradition of a general Republican tactic to call something the opposite of what it really is, like "The Patriot Act", "Leave No Child Behind", and "Right to Work" pieces of legislation we've all come to know and love.

After the cartoons, there's this graphic of an eagle crying.

Then there's this text:
'From the time Barack Obama was sworn in as a United State Senator, to the time he announced he was forming a Presidential exploratory committee, he logged 143 days of experience in the Senate. That's how many days the Senate was actually in session and working. After 143 days of work experience, Obama believed he was ready to be Commander In Chief, Leader of the Free World, and fill the shoes of Abraham Lincoln, FDR, JFK and Ronald Reagan. 143 days. I keep leftovers in my refrigerator longer than that.'

Well, let's pray for the health of the person who wrote that, as even most cheeses start to turn after 1/3 of a year.

Then, one of the buddies added a postscript in a responding email:

I think if you dig deep, you'll find that Disney is behind this whole campaign. Noone else can create huge stars out of nothing that quickly.

Which is cute, but - as Bugs always says - of course you realize, this means war.

So I shot back with:
I think it's funny how overwrought these things are - an eagle crying? Puh-leeze.

I also dig the tactic Obama's a big media star like Britney, and that's wrong! Don't elect him because he's .... POPULAR!

Seems the Repubs. didn't mind it when Ronnie was the media star.

Funny funny stuff.

Which resulted in the retort (from the guy who offered the Disney conspiracy theory):
Well, Ronald Reagan was 70, with a resume of accomplishments in various fields, before reaching that level of popularity. That world was not nearly as media driven as the one we live in today.

There is no doubt in my mind that the Obama mystique was manufactured (hence the Disney reference). You don't think the DNC was wetting their pants when they discovered this good looking, well spoken, charismatic, African American (but not too black) from the midwest (via SE Asia)?

It is funny. Reminds me of Primary Colors funny :)

Now it's ON, BABY! So I wrote:
Was JFK's mystique manufactured? Not that Obama is JFK, but - like him - is articulate in a way no candidate has been for a while (the last one was Reagan).

And the only accomplishment that is relevant that Reagan had was being Gov. of CA. How is that all that different from being a senator?

Quibbles, yes. But I still think this "he's a celebrity" whining is a no-starter.

And then the guy who'd been silent up to now comes back with:
Yeah, but Reagan knew how to take a bullet.

So I have to concede that I was utterly and completely owned.

Oh well. There's still the election.

"No way, no how, no McCain"

Monday, August 04, 2008

Recent Viewings, 08-03-2008

Saw X-Files, I Want to Believe

Strait up: Fans should see it, of course. For the uninitiated, it's a tossup.

I liked it because it had the look and feel of X-Files - like the new Indiana Jones movie perfectly nailed the feeling of the old films. The music was right, the pacing was right, everyone looked like they should.

The story is a one-trick pony, so make sure you get NO spoilers prior to the flick. Once you know what's going on, you just know. And they do a great job of leading you to it, so it's quite the fun surprise (if it's not been ruined for ya).

It's OK the story is so limited (most X-Files stories typically had a few layers, so this eppy is an exception) because the REAL theme here is Mulder and Scully (who, though they are a committed couple, still call each other by their last names - guess old habits are hard to break). Scully has gone back to medicine and works as a surgeon in a Catholic hospital. Mulder has been sitting around clipping newspaper articles of weird happenings and growing a beard.

I loved the way it circled around the big questions. What is faith? (I've always appreciated the way they've handled Scully's faith. It's never been patronizing or sneering.) What is love? (Baby don't hurt me.) What is obsession? (Insert perfume joke here.) And so on.

Ebert liked it. Peter Travers liked it. Lisa Schwarzbaum not so much. (FYI, these are the three professional movie critics I read anymore.)

Though I did read something that made me go WTF? This bozo got all wound up in his review, braying "it’s howlingly offensive to GLBT audiences." Wanna know why? Because the other committed couple in the flick besides Mulder and Scully are a gay (male) couple. Shameful! They don't visit ONE bathhouse! (Said bozo does not give away any plot points, though.) What a maroon.

I think if you're intrigued at all, you should catch it sometime.

On DVD saw Vantage Point, where William Hurt plays the first bald president, then gets shot.

It's an average little thriller; more of a TV movie.

The shtick is we keep reviewing the assassination through the eyes of various characters' viewpoints. When we get to the end, the scenes rapid replay in reverse with dramatic whooshing sounds, and then we start over with a new character. By about the fifth time (or maybe even the third), you're thinking: crikey, get on with it.

Thankfully it's short. If it's free, or a $1, or you need to pad your Netflix queue, check it out. Otherwise, watch a better old movie again.

Saw Space Chimps with MPC2 (who's 3 1/2), while MPC1 and wife say the mummy sequel (which I felt I'd seen by dint of the preview).

It's rated "G", so I was surprised when a main character gets eaten by a very toothy, scary beasty in the cave of bad plot devices that everyone has to go through to get to the final destination. Mild spoiler: It turns out OK in the end (which is a pun you'll get if you watch it with your wee ones), but still.

Other than that, it's pretty straight-forward, somewhat clichéd fare. Which is just fine, since it's aimed at the tots, and it's paced so they can follow it (unlike Wall-E which has more plot twists than all of Hitchcock's films strung together). Plus when you're that little, nothing's cliché yet - other than naptime.

I recommend renting the DVD when it comes out, putting the little ones in front of it, then going to another room and watch something YOU want to see. However, if you've got little ones who are purists for the big screen experience, just claim as many as you can to be under the age of 3.
Top 10 Most Annoying Office Traditions.

Hear hear.

I don't watch the show (for some reason it seems so contrived and it just isn't Office Space), but I can agree wholeheartedly on this list. Dear God, I hate each and every one with a passion.

The one I'd add is the freakin' potluck lunch. It's bad enough that I can smell the leftovers you nuke for lunch. Please don't make me eat a piping hot plate of that crap - along with everyone else's crap - and make me pretend that I like it.

I think that's where the old valley girl phrase was birthed: gag me with a spoon.

Wingnut propaganda just floors me.

A good buddy sends me the daily gush of wingnut email propaganda, and some of it is funny, but some of it is just ... disturbed.

Here is a sample of something going around (like an STD), supposedly by Bill Brown of the Billy Graham team. Besides being the same neocon BS we've seen for years now, it amazes me that someone can associate themselves with a famous Christian, yet belch out a list of positions that would have Jesus flipping over tables and chairs were He here in the flesh to respond.

Anyway, here's the propaganda. My retorts in bold.

The Obama Tidal Wave

We are witnessing a political phenomenon with Barack Obama of rare magnitude.

His speeches have inspired millions and yet most of his followers have no idea of what he stands for except platitudes of 'Change' or that he says he will be a 'Uniter'.

The power of speech from a charismatic person truly can be a powerful thing. Certainly Billy Graham had charisma. Both his manner of speech and particularly the content changed millions.

On the extreme other hand, the charisma of Adolph Hitler, too, inspired millions and the results were catastrophic.

Barack Obama certainly is no Hitler or a Billy Graham, but for many Americans riding on the Obama Tidal Wave it is just like a surfer who might be ecstatic and euphoric while riding a tidal wave, but the reality of the ride is what happens when it hits shore.

Ah, we start right off the bat by invoking Godwin's Law: "once a comparison to Hitler is made, the discussion is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically 'lost' whatever debate was in progress." Starting off so low, it's hard to believe we will continue to go downhill, but here we go....

Just Some of What Defines Barack Obama:

• He voted for partial birth abortion.
• He voted no on notifying parents of minors who get out-of-state abortions.
- Abortion kills babies. That's just a fact. However, having a brother with multiple birth defects, including severe mental retardation, who lives in extreme pain because the doctors wouldn't let him die when he was born practically dead (against the wishes of my mother), and the fact that I carry a genetic anomaly that can cause this condition to be passed on, I don't want the govt. preventing legal abortions. I personally would rather go to hell then allow another human living the life my brother has. I think it's insidious that people use abortion as birth control, but taking that right away would also take mine away. This is known as choosing the lesser evil. If it wouldn't be a slippery slope, I'd prefer we didn't allow partial birth abortions. Anything much past the first trimester is barbarian. (Hell, it's always barbarian, but it's worse when they have mostly formed.) And I'm tired of this being a litmus test issue.

• Supports affirmative action in Colleges and Government (quotas).
- Affirmative action has led to quotas, that can't be denied. But, it also can't be denied that it has helped a lot of people who wouldn't have gotten access the way things were. It's imperfect, but it's mostly good.

• In 2001 he questioned harsh penalties for drug dealing as being too severe.
- Good. The drug war is ridiculous, particularly since it put a lot of people who just smoked pot in prison, and has cost us bazillions in tax dollars. Our efforts should be keeping it out of the hands of kids, like we do with booze. End the stupid drug war, please.

• Says he will deal with street level drug dealing as minimum wage affair.
- Because a large proportion of the reason behind it is just that. See "stupid drug war."

• Admitted his use of marijuana and cocaine in high school and in college.
- If someone gets through college WITHOUT trying a joint, I find THAT suspicious. And for a while in America, people viewed doing coke as benign as taking a vivarin. Now we know better, of course, but this is WAY less damning than being a draft-dodger who never showed up to duty because he was too drunk (and snorting coke). I think Georgie-boy's past has made this a non-starter from now on.

• His religious convictions are very murky.
- Bullshit. He's a Christian Protestant and has been very clear on his religious beliefs. Including disowning his nutball ex-pastor whose views are more about Malcolm X than Jesus.

• He is willing to meet with Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, Kim Jung Il and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
- And this is a problem? Have you read a history book? Start with Nixon - you may be shocked.

• Has said that one of his first goals after being elected would be to have a conference with all Muslim nations. Why?
- Dunno. Why bring it up if you don't know either?

• Opposed the Patriot Act.
- Good. Hope he reestablishes habeas corpus, too. This is supposed to be America.

• First bill he signed that was ever passed was campaign finance reform.
- And that's a problem?

• Voted to allow law suits against gun manufacturers.
- Hey, I support private ownership of guns; I'm all about the 2nd amendment (hell, I'm all about all of them). This was a silly attempt to fight things the way we fight the drug war. You can have this one. Bad choice on his part.

• Supports universal health-care.
- Thank God! Now maybe kids can get all of their inoculations. Maybe people won't die of simple diseases, or be saddled with a life-long issues because they couldn't afford help.

• Voted yes on providing habeas corpus for Guantanamo detainees.
- Gosh, he actually voted that America should act like America? The scandal!

• Supports granting driver's licenses to illegal immigrants.
- A lot of these emails have stuff in them that's just wingnut echo chamber shite. This smells like that. Show me how or where he did this. Not saying he didn't, but prove it. (And, btw, if illegals drive around without licenses now, what makes anyone think they'll go into a govt. office, admit they're here illegally, and then pay for that privilege in hopes of being (at least) a legal driver? Seem a little far-fetced?)

• Supports extending welfare to illegal immigrants.
- Ditto re wingnut echo chamber stuff.

• Voted yes on comprehensive immigration reform.
- So did most of the Republicans. This is a neocon/wingnut issue; ya'll should be happy he voted with you.

• Voted yes on allowing illegal aliens to participate in Social Security.
- Prove it.

• Wants to make the minimum wage a 'living wage'.
- Good. You do realize this is about people, right? WWJD? Kick you square in the ass if you were to show him this list as representing Christian values.

• Voted with Democratic Party 96 percent of 251 votes. (241 votes Demo, 10 votes Republican)
- Hello? He's a Democrat.

• Is a big believer in the separation of church and state.
- As were all the founding fathers, and anyone who's not a Southern Baptist. Why is this even an issue?

• Opposed to any efforts to Privatize Social Security and instead supports increasing the amount of tax paid into Soc. Sec. Tax Increase.
- Good. Privatizing social security would just be a windfall to Wall Street, and then they'd slowly chip away at what retirees got, then we'd have old people dieing of starvation and poverty like they did before we had social security. Social Security is a program that works, and it should stay that way.

• He voted No on repealing the Alternative Minimum Tax which now hits middle income brackets. Tax Increase.
- "Hits middle income brackets." Suuuuuure. If by that you mean someone making over $100,000 grand a year - and even in this economy, that's the way upper register of the middle class. You really can't hide the fact that the middle class carries much more than its fair share of the tax burden. I think that's wrong.

• He voted No on repealing the 'Death' Tax. Tax Increase.
- Good. I was one of those who was for the repeal of the inheritance tax because I believed the lie about it affecting the middle class, and because it smacked of taxation without representation. But, the middle class angle was a lie, and I can be convinced that a trust-fund kid giving up a million when daddy dies isn't necessarily a bad thing. One less yacht? Bummer.

• He wants to raise the Capital Gains Tax. Tax Increase...
- Good. It's income. Why should the primary income of the wealthy not be taxed like the income of the middle class? Notice a theme here? Wingnuts don't want a middle class. Unless you are a multi-millionaire, this means YOU.

• Has repeatedly said the surge in Iraq has not succeeded...which is not true.
- Wha? You've got to be kidding. Wingnut echo chamber BS.

• He is ranked as the most liberal Senator in the Senate today and that takes some doing.
- Oh my! He's liberal! Hide the kids! Roll up the sidewalks! Where's my mommy??!?!?!


What a silly, silly piece of propaganda.

It's pretty clear that the neocons/wingnuts want to decimate the middle class of America. When Wal-mart feels it can lean on employees at work to vote Republican, you know something's wrong.

The jaw-dropping thing for me is they fooled so many of the very people they fucked over (that being the Republican middle class) with lies about war, how taxes burdens are really distributed, and false religious issues. Now the economy is in free-fall, and even basics like food are getting to be luxury items.

I'm glad I learned a lot about cooking cheap as a kid (the ole Irish heritage coming into play outside of St. Patty's day), because it's coming in handy now. Cabbage and potatoes are your friends. Throw in a little bacon and butter, and you've got yourself some nutritious meals.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Vurrah vurrah funneh

Check out these "comics" of recent movies. My favorite it the one for Cloverfield.

WARNING: Spoilers galore. The plots are revealed.

The philosophy section's a snort, too.
It's all about the ....

The endlessly entertaining Roissy put up a post that has caused a comment-fest unlike any I've seen in a while that doesn't involve religion (though one commenter sure tried to drag religion into it).

His premise in a nutshell: Don't get married, because as Devlin points out, many women are fickle vulgar sluts, especially these days, and men are expendable in today's society and legal system, so most will probably get tossed aside eventually; therefore, if you (guys) have to get married, keep in mind that few women are worthy, so make sure she's beneath you (in all the ways that that can be taken) or filthy rich.

I really have no interest in picking that apart (or the full version of the post) - because in the context of what's Roissy's writing about, most of it is true. I might back off of the less-than-flattering characterization of women, as it reflects a double-standard. If a society is OK with fucking around, then it takes two to tango, etc. (I suspect, like other guys, after years of male-bashing gender feminism, it's nice to see someone openly snarking back. Even if some of it is as specious as some of the male-hating feminism was (is).) (And Devlin and Roissy are both seemingly correct about the divorce thing. Every couple in my circle who's gotten divorced did so at the behest of the woman. Not a single exception.)

What I noticed is that most of the commenters have overlooked (or forgotten) one small detail: Roissy's blog is all about getting pussy. That's it. In the comments, he even reminds everyone about his definitions of alpha and beta, and it's all about how many trips down love canal you've had. (According to those definitions, I'm a greater beta, much to my surprise. Thought I'd be closer to the Omega end of things. More on that in a bit.)

He often tries to expand this into an all-encompassing world view - "Make no mistake, at the most fundamental level the CRUX of a man’s worth is measured by his desirability to women, whether he chooses to play the game or not. Pussy is the holy grail."

I say there's more to my life than strange.
TLD: I cracked myself up when I followed that thought to it's logical end and envisioned Roissy as a dad talking to his kid. There they are, on the porch. Progeny says, "Daddy, can you help me with my homework?" A babe walks by and Roissy gestures toward her and says, "No, can't help with the homework, but I could sure hit that if you wanted me to."

Now, on Roissy's blog, it IS all about banging strange pussy, so everything is filtered through that prism. It's a variant on the adage that if all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. And, as readers of his blog know ... wait for it ... he nails things a lot. Thank you! Remember to tip your waitresses! Whoa! That's not what I mean, Roissy!

Though I am a greater beta according to Roissy (and, to me, that always conjures the image of a Japanese fighting fish ensconced in a Styrofoam cup at Walmart, destined to go home to a 4-inch-square aquarium, waiting for the inevitable flush down the commode), and I have no aspirations for being a lesser alpha, because I did some of those things - cheated, slept around, etc. - and I didn't like what it did to my soul. The trade-off for a half-hour of biological ecstasy just proved to be too dear for me.

And here's one reason why, to give an example: during a college break, the four of us remaining on the dorm floor (too poor to go anywhere), hit our favorite bar for some chat and 12 oz. curls. There were three of us guys and one of the girls. A pleasant chat was had by all. One of the topics was fuck buddies, or "friends with benefits." Even the gal at the table was chiming in on the affirmative how nice it would be to have someone you could call for a quickie with no strings. Well, the other two guys got up to play a game of pool, so I turned to the lady and said, "So, are you serious? You'd be up for that?" So there I was a couple (long) hours later, knocking on the door to her dorm room (which we had chosen because everyone else around her was gone).

The next day I was Uncle Remus sauntering off down the animated blvd., whistling "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah," with the little cartoon things bobbing around my shoulders (or they were probably just hallucinations from a complete lack of sleep). But during breakfast came the time for another cartoon archetype; the little devil and angle appeared on each shoulder with a "poof." Angel inquires: was it fun? Devil says: hell yeah! Angel says: I wasn't asking you. I say (not out loud of course): dammit anyway, even though there were no strings, supposedly no consequences, I still feel ... wrong somehow.

And, I've always had that slightly soul-dragging sensation after the few one-night-stands I've had in my life.

Then I cheated on a girlfriend, and that felt like hell (after the fun part, natch). So, I'm just one of those who can't ignore the emotional and whatever-the-hell-it-is that creates a [can't be defined] connection, wanted or not, with someone you have sex with.

During a college bull session, one guy said that one religion believes (and I've never discovered which one it was, if there is one like this at all), that every person you have sex with will be joined to you, and will essentially be your spouse in the afterlife. (He put it in male-centric terms though: every chick you screw will become your wife in the afterlife for all eternity.) The color drained out of many faces at the thought. I, of course, think that's total bullshit, but it does come close to evoking the sensation I'm trying (and doing very badly) to evoke in the previous two paragraphs.

Getting back to Roissy's view of the world ... that's just not a world I want to live in. However, I'm not going to go so far as to say that MY view of the world is what will work for everyone.

Y'know, cheers to the Roissy's of the world, and the woman bedded by them. Hey, you go girl, for the girls who like to hit the maypole whenever and with whomever they please.

I'm a little hesitant to wave the pom poms for folks who are encouraged to cheat on their spouses, particularly when a corporation is cynically trying to cash in on it:
(Note the guy is no real gift to humanity either.)

When you begin to hurt others, well, that's bad.

To take things in a different direction, one thread that blossomed in the comments to the Roissy post is what constitutes a pretty woman. "El Guapo" offered a rundown in comments 132 and 160.

I really have no retorts regarding those, but serendipitously/synchronicitiously I happed across this fantastic article that reports the results of actual research about what men prefer about women's looks, and women's (inaccurate) assessment of what men like. I can whole-heartedly agree with this article. (And I'm gonna get a nice color printout of the opening graphic and hang that sucker on da wall.)

Roissy's always talking about how hot (or not) someone is, and how perfect (or not) their body is. (Again, no hating on Roissy; it's his life.)

I have a different perspective on that. When I was a teen, I was fixated on perfect bodies for a short while - the more perfect, the more alluring. But as I aged, and actually got some experience with the lovely variety that's out there, I kinda turned into that guy in the James Brown song "Mother Popcorn":
Some like'em fat, some like'em tall
Some like'em short, skinny legs and all
I like'em all, huh, I like'em proud

I like'em all. My only exceptions are 1) morbid obesity (see Good Luck Chuck for a hilarious example (slightly NSFW) of that), or 2) a pervasive funk (some peoples just smell bad all the time, nothin' they can do).

One final note, again in what might be serendipitously/synchronicitiously, an article on where the singles are popped up on the web this week. So, for those of you who are still looking for THE ONE, here are the places where the odds are for ya rather than against ya.

One cynical note, though. I note that Berkeley, Boston, Boulder, and Minneapolis are high on the list, and I bet I know why. Every one of those places is home to a major university AND those universities have overly strong Identity Politics depts. whose sole job is to turn perfectly nice people into haters and bigots in order to create a better world. A good proportion of the women you meet in those towns are hard-core man-haters, and good proportion of the guys are emasculated sensitive new-age guys, so that might explain the higher numbers of lonely hearts. Just thought I'd throw that out there.

Those are places where Roissy's "game" might come in handy.