Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Extended Version of LOST Season 4 Trailer Hits the Web

Thanks to Don, one of the new guys at The Tail Section, for posting this clip on the TTS site.




I'm even more excited for the Season Four premiere than ever. Ken Leung and Jeremy Davies appear in this trailer.

Was that Jacob in the dim room? Or was it Christian Shephard? Will Charlie appear in the season premiere? Who will leave the Island, aside from Jack and Kate, of course? Who will not leave the Island, aside from Locke, Rousseau, and possibly Alex? Will Michael appear in the premiere?

Ahhhhh!

I can't wait for January 31st!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

LOST Gets Snubbed Again

I'm not sure why critics ignore LOST's awesomeness last season.

Maybe, it's the split season, where the first six episodes served as a long introduction to the fun that began in "Not In Portland," the first Juliet-centric episode. Maybe, it's Nikki and Paulo, whom virtually the entire fandom hated. Maybe, it's Mr. Eko's demise. Maybe, it's "Stranger In a Strange Land". Maybe, it's the non-appearance of Libby in Season 3. Maybe, it's the freshness and less mythological characteristics of Heroes.

I don't know, really. And I can't understand why those critics don't think that the second part of the season redeemed LOST in many aspects.

Nevertheless, LOST was not nominated in the 2008 Writers Guild Awards in the dramatic series category. Thankfully, Damon Lindelof and Drew Goddard's writing in the amazing "Flashes Before Your Eyes," the revelatory Desmond-centric episode. The rest of the nominees in the episodic drama category follows:

EPISODIC DRAMA - any length - one airing time

Final Grades (The Wire), Teleplay by
David
Simon
; Story by David Simon & Ed Burns;
HBO

The Second Coming (The Sopranos), Written by Terence Winter; HBO

The Round File (The Closer), Written by Michael Alaimo; TNT

Flashes Before Your Eyes (Lost), Written by Damon Lindelof & Drew Goddard; ABC

The Hobo Code (Mad Men), Written by Chris Provenzano;
AMC

The Dark Defender (Dexter), Written by Tim
Schlattmann
; Showtime



Also, the Golden Globe nominations were announced this morning, and LOST wasn't nominated in any category. Here are the nominees for the best drama series;

BEST TELEVISION SERIES – DRAMA

BIG LOVE (HBO)
Anima Sola and Playtone Productions in association with HBO Entertainment

DAMAGES (FX NETWORKS)
FX Productions and Sony Pictures Television

GREY’S ANATOMY (ABC)
ABC Studios

HOUSE (FOX)
Heel and Toe Films, Shore Z Productions and Bad Hat Harry Productions in
association with Universal Media Studios

MAD MEN (AMC)
Lionsgate Television

THE TUDORS (SHOWTIME)
Showtime/Peace Arch Entertainment/Working Title/Reveille Productions
Limited/An Ireland-Canada Co-Production


Seriously.

I hope either Grey's Anatomy or House wins.

Anyway, LOST's season four starts in February, and I know it'll kick butt. Provided, of course, the WGA strike ends soon and production in LOST resumes shortly afterwards.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Like You'll Never See Me Again

I wore my uncomfortable muffin-top trousers today. It's not so uncomfortable this time. Maybe I was just super bloated the first time I wore these pants.

Anyway, my usual bus didn't show up this morning. That sucks, but it was an improvement from last time when two buses didn't show up; I was an hour late for work that day. So I thought I was going to be half an hour late today, which was all right; if my workload is light today, I can leave on the same time because I have enough OT hours to cover for that half-hour. So I just waited for the bus while listening to the Take The Lead soundtrack on my brand-spankin'-new iPod nano.

Speaking of which, I saw this iPod-nano-carrying hottie today. I saw him last on October 10th, and before that, on May 24th (the day after the LOST season-three finale and a few days before my birthday - very important events this year). He looked as hot as ever, making me smile and blush despite the cold and the mild anxiety (I don't want to be late!). Except for the possibility that he's older and/or emotionally unavailable (I've had enough of such men), he totally made my day.

So the SkyTrain ride to work went smoothly. I disembarked and ran down to the bus loop. Imagine my surprise when I looked at the iPod nano clock and discovered that it was barely eight o'clock! I wasn't late! So I got in at my usual time and I can leave at four-thirty. Freakin' brilliant. I don't want to miss this other hottie that I encounter on my way home. But that's another story.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Motorola Brings JC and Kelly Together

Motorola celebrated its ninth anniversary with a party attended by celebrities, including Brittany Murphy and JC Chasez on November 8th. The best American Idol - Kelly Clarkson - provided entertainment.

I chanced upon this YouTube video of JC saying very, very nice things about my favourite American Idol.



Aside from JC, some other people said very, very nice things - fine, mentioned at the very least - about Kelly. They are Brittany Murphy (Sin City), Dave Annable (Brothers & Sisters), Olivia Wilde (House M.D.), and Audrina Patridge (The Hills).



Lastly, here's a footage from E! News where JC attempted to sing "Since U Been Gone" and an all too brief clip of Kelly singing "Behind These Hazel Eyes".



Seriously, JC!

If they would only hook up, get married, and kick the butt of anyone who tries to screw up their careers... I would be a very happy fan.

The Best Cure to a Crappy Mood After a Crappy Morning

The craziness at work has died down. Period-end accounting is done and it's time to move on to the third period of the new fiscal year. There's not much to worry about, because I've billed what I could bill. I didn't see my crush last night, but that's all right. I downloaded Alicia Keys's new album on iTunes and I will enjoy all the songs, videos, and podcasts I've download so far in four - FOUR - days when I get my iPod Nano. Last night, I chose my new pair of black trousers to wear to work this morning. And I got to have chocolate last night.

So, today I thought the day was gonna be great. How was I to know that my new pair of pants doesn't fit me as well as it did when I first tried it on?

So, I have a muffin top. Big deal. But it's completely uncomfortable.

Oh, did I mention I didn't get to dry my hair this morning because it took me a little while to button my pants? (I had nothing else to wear!)

Thank God the ride to work wasn't so bad. It was a little cold, but I didn't get frostbitten so I guess it's fine.

When I got in the office, I went through my usual morning routine - freshen up (e.g. pull my hair back), get a hot beverage (chai tea today), sign in to my computer, check my work e-mail, and go on Facebook. Then I went to Yahoo to read some news items (e.g. the terrorist attack in the Philippine Congress, Ellen Pompeo's quiet wedding, etc.). Then I clicked the link to the 2007 Sexiest Man Alive photo gallery by People Magazine. I was praying one of my Hollywood crushes was chosen to be the sexiest man alive.

Then I saw this:



Matthew Paige Damon was the chosen one!

Yay!

So, now I'm feeling better. Still uncomfortable because of the muffin top. But Matt Damon (also Patrick Dempsey and Adrian Grenier) made it all better.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Sleeping On It

Here's another reason to love sleep.

Apparently, the science section of The New York Times (or the Science Times) is devoting a special issue to examine "a cascade of research into the science of sleep."

According to the article, deep sleep, on which healthy sleepers spend more time earlier in the night, improves memory of learned facts, such as names, numbers, or places. This could mean that those who need to remember facts for exams would do better to sleep and arise early than to stay up late studying. Also, REM (rapid eye movement) sleep enhances pattern recognition learning, such as grammar or chess. The bulk of REM sleep comes later in the night, which means those who need to learn grammar, chess, or the like would benefit from staying up later rather than turning in early. Moreover, Stage 2 sleep, which is the intermediate stage between REM sleep and deep sleep, boosts learning motor skills, such as playing the piano or guitar, or playing hockey.

Pretty cool, eh?

This article was written by Benedict Carey and was published on 23 October 2007.

Sounds Familiar?

For anyone who's not Beyonce Knowles or Justin Timberfake - I meant, Timberlake - this year must suck.

First, Kelly Clarkson's summer tour was scrapped because of poor ticket sales. She has now started her fall tour and, according to reviews, is proving everyone how fantastic and real she is. Happy ending, indeed. Then, JC Chasez left Jive Records, but he hasn't inked a deal with another record company. Rumour has it that he's in talks with Interscope to do a joint venture with Timberfake's - once again, I meant, Timberlake's - Tennman Records (why, oh, why???) and Timbaland's Mosley Music Group.

Now, it looks like Kelly Rowland's fall tour is going to be scrapped altogether.

CRAP.

MediaTakeOut.com reports that the Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Francisco shows have been cancelled. Worse still, the same site reports the entire tour may be axed. Here's the brief report, in verbatim:


October 23, 2007. For all you looking forward to Kelly Rowland's tour (and we know that's not a lot of you), you may be upset with this report. MediaTakeOut.com is hearing whispers that Kelly Rowland's upcoming tour with Mario is on the verge of being cancelled. The organizers of the tour have already cancelled the Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Francisco legs of the tour. And word is - they're about to scrap the whole thing. The problem, MediaTakeOut.com is hearing, is that very few people were buying tickets to the shows. 2007 hasn't been a good year for Miss Rowland...



Of course, the writer just had to stress that not a lot of people are looking forward to her tour.

Oh, well. I wasn't gonna go to the Seattle concert anyway.

But still...

In a perfect world, Kelly Rowland will have the same respect that Beyonce has. It's a shame we live in an imperfect world.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Only Bad Thing About Being Canadian

I love Canada. If I were to choose between living in the U.S. and living in Canada, I'd chose living in Canada anytime. I don't have anything against America, really. I have American friends and relatives. Americans, in general, are great. But, of course, Canadians are better.

However, America doesn't let me access the things that I want - want and need - to have access to. There are two things.

First, I can't stream episodes online because I'm a Canadian resident. For example, LOST - the best show on earth - episodes are available online. Unfortunately, I always get this message:

Only viewers within the United States can watch these full-length episodes.


I get the same message when I try to watch CSI, CSI: Miami, and CSI: NY episodes on the CBS website.

Sucks.

Second, I can't buy TV episodes and movies from iTunes because they're not available on the Canadian iTunes store. If I try to buy them from the U.S. iTunes store, I fail as well because I don't have a credit card or bank account in the U.S.

Seriously?!

I don't know why I can't access shows and movies because I live in Canada. Tell me why!

I'm getting an iPod so I can download episodes of LOST, Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice, Ugly Betty, etcetera, and watch them on the go. But I can't because I'm a Canadian resident?!

Bull!

Would somebody be willing to download the new episodes of the above-mentioned shows and/or gift them to me? Please? Please?!

Monday, October 8, 2007

One Truly Horrible Dad

Check this out: Anthony Cooper, John Locke's dad in LOST, made CTV's "honourable"-mention list of worst movie dads.

Anthony Cooper,
the ruthless con man (actor Kevin Tighe) on "Lost." TV dad M.O.: Push your son out an 8th floor window, paralyze the poor bastard and then show up on the island wanting to abscond with his kidney.


Although he's not technically a movie dad, because LOST isn't a movie (not yet, anyway), the description of the horribly wicked character is spot-on. I've always referred to Anthony Cooper as a "heartless SOB" and I don't regret it. I'm quite thankful my parents aren't like him - or anyone else in the list of worst Hollywood parents, for that matter.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

JC Chasez on Britney Spears, 5 October 2007

I chanced upon this YouTube video on JC Source.




JC has always said nice things about Britney. That is, except when he unofficially confirmed that Brit cheated on Justin. But whatever.

Anyway, I only saw this hilarious MMC clip with JC, Justin, and Britney.




Be back later. I'll watch *NSYNC's PopOdyssey tour DVD for the nth time.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Darlton Broke Radio Silence - AGAIN?

Well, well, well.

Apparently Darlton offered SCI FI Wire some season four "spoilers". Some of it I actually know or guessed about; the others (what? Others?) are kinda new to my ears (or eyes).

As announced at the Television Critics Association gathering (I think) the day before the 2007 Comic-Con, Harold Perrineau will come back as a regular in LOST. Damon Lindelof did say that they planned for Malcolm David Kelley's sudden growth (he's fifteen years old, playing a ten-year-old). I've guessed that his character, Walt, will only appear in flash-forwards. And as we've seen in the season three finale, he appeared to Locke on the island, which can be either a manifestation of the smoke monster or a proof that Walt does simultaneously appear in two places.

As for Jacob, Carlton Cuse said this: "Yes, we do know how Jacob will be depicted. Notice the careful wording of my answer. And, no, Jacob did not appear before he was met by Locke." According to the Compact Oxford English Dictionary, to depict is to represent by a drawing, painting, or other art form. It also means to portray in words. So we may see a painting or a photograph of Jacob in season four. Or maybe a written/verbal description. My theory is that the four-toed statue represents a part of the ginormous statue of Jacob.

Also, now that they have introduced the concept of flash-forwards, we're now going to see a combination of flashbacks and flash-forwards in season four. Now, we have to guess which character (who) the episode is focusing on and the time period (past or future) they are focusing on.

Damon Lindelof said this regarding Charlie Pace's death at the end of season three: "The reverberation of that death echoes right into the premiere of season four." Okay, Charlie went down to The Looking Glass station to stop the jamming and, in turn, to enable Jack and Naomi to contact Naomi's freighter. This, in Desmond's premonition, will result in rescue (specifically, Claire and Aaron's). Unfortunately, Ben kept saying that contacting the freighter people is a big mistake and is "the beginning of the end." Locke also told Jack that he "wasn't supposed to do this." Anyway, this may be an indication that the freighter people will bring harm to the Losties and the Others. So the supposed rescue may turn out to be really bad for them. That's one very serious consequence. Another is that Desmond will be affected by Charlie's death. After all, he was the one who predicted it. However, we never saw this particular flash (the producers may not have thought of it relevant to show us in season three, but whatever), so Des may have been acting on his own agenda, whatever it is. Not to mention, that Claire, Hurley, Jack, Kate, Rose, Bernard, and everyone else who love Charlie will be devastated upon learning that Charlie died.

The article ended by unofficially killing all Monday time slot rumours. It says season four starts on February 6, 2008. Check your calendars, to be sure. It's a Wednesday. I said "unofficially," because the network has said nothing official about it.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Britney Turns The Tables

Hahaha. Nice...

Britney Spears gave the paparazzi a dose of their own medicine by bringing a video camera to a Mexican restaurant in Burbank, California.

For more of these pics (and more of Britney Spears), please click here.

I wonder what she'd do with the video, though. Show it to her kids?

Also, I'm not digging her outfit. Or at least, the boots. I guess, as long as her private parts aren't being seen, it's all right.

Joey Fatone Offers Britney Spears A Way Out

This is nice. Somebody actually is extending help to Britney Spears.

As you know, JC Chasez is my favourite *NSYNC-er. Sadly, he may have nice words to say about Britney, but he hasn't offered her a helping hand. At least the way Joey has.

It's nice, because it's refreshing to know that someone still cares enough for Britney to offer help. While everyone else is (justifiably or otherwise) bashing her for her actions and behaviour Joey Fatone is actually expressing a desire to do something. Joey is a good guy, that's why.

Unfortunately, in my opinion, the only obstacle for Britney's healing is Britney herself.

She's been to rehab and it didn't help. I thought she'd change her partying and crazy ways when she had a child; she didn't. Post-partum depression, however, is different and something to be concerned about. Anyway, when she filed for divorce, I thought she'd attempt to change her life other than ditching K-Fed. Not to mention that she's fighting with her mother, who may not be Mom of the Year but is still her mother.

I think Britney needs tough love. She needs someone tough and firm, but caring enough to let her understand the effects of her behaviour and actions.

She also needs those who still care about her to pray for her. We should pray that God will change her heart and turn her life around. She needs it.

I hope Joey and his family pray for her. And I also hope that Britney doesn't ruin Joey's life.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Evangeline Lilly Quitting LOST?

No, Evie, no!!!

I saw an article in the celebrity gossip page of the free daily about Evangeline Lilly, the stunning Canadian and LOST actress. It said that she and Dominic Monaghan, whose character was killed off in last season's finale, are going through a rough patch in their relationship. It is reportedly stressful keeping up their relationship with Evie filming season four in Oahu and Dom "exploring new horizons" in Los Angeles. Ananova.com reported that Dom promises to fly out to Oahu to see her every few weeks "because she's the love of his life" - which, I think, is very romantic. But, apparently, "things have hit a rough patch." Unfortunately, for us LOST and Kate fans anyway, Evie may quit LOST to save their relationship.

Well, long-distance relationships are difficult indeed to maintain. (Theoretically, at least, because I've never had one.) I've heard that long-distance relationships between two celebrities are even more difficult. Especially if you've been used to being with and working with the love of your life for three years. Then, boom, his character is killed off, while hers stays in the show until the remainder of the series.

I don't know if Darlton will let her quit LOST if she asked for it. Kate's story arc isn't complete. Also, the fact that she was in the rattlesnake-in-the-mailbox scene in "Through The Looking Glass" indicates her story arc may not be complete until the end of the series.

As romantic and brave as it is to sacrifice a great show like LOST for love, I hope Evie has enough professionalism to finish her character's run in the show.

I hope this rumour isn't true. But if it is, on behalf of all her fans, I'll say...

NO, EVIE, NO!!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

My Only Wish This Year

I know, I know. September is only ending. I still have to get through Thanksgiving and Halloween (which I don't celebrate anyway).

But I want to say it now... Just so it's clear...

That there are only two material things I'd like to get this Christmas.

This...

(A given for any LOST fan.)

And this...


Now, I only have to convince my sister to buy this 80 GB iPod Classic for me.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

DocArzt's "Highway to Hawaii Raffle"

I'm a big fan of DocArzt of The Tailsection, one of the best LOST fan sites. Well, any LOST fan is great in my books anyway. But having a day job at BuddyTV.com, having a family, and maintaining a LOST fan site at the same time is incredible in my books.

Anyway, DocArzt was invited to visit the LOST set as a guest of the LOST crew. That's freakin' fantastic, right? Unfortunately, he and his family is spending a lot of money for his oldest son's stay in a development disabilities program, he won't be financially ready for the Oahu trip.

So he's having a raffle/fundraiser titled "Highway to Hawaii Raffle." Here's how it works, straight from his article:

For a minimum donation of $1.00 you will receive an entry. Each $5.00 donated on top of the first dollar will get you an additional entry. On October 10th we will publish the complete list of everybody’s number of entries for download. The list will be printed, cut into strips, and on October 15th, via live streaming video on the BuddyTV chat appliance, I will draw 10 names from a fishbowl. The winners will be announced live, and published on the website

Entrants will not be named, every entrant will be assigned a number and will be contacted through email with that number.

Winners will provide DocArzt with head shots, which will be blown to life-size, printed out, and attached on sticks. If the LOST cast and crew allow him to take photographs of cast members and/or LOST shooting locations, he will try his darnedest to include the winners' head shots in the photos. They might not let him, though. But he'll try anyway.

For more information, please click here or the photo for the article.


Clicking the Pay Pal logo at the bottom of the article will bring you to this:

Just follow the instructions and then you'll be sent an e-mail confirmation. Voila! You're all done.

I did it in less then five minutes, at work, just before my boss came in. (Hehe.)

And now you can also help for free! Just follow the links on the original article.

Donated? Done?

Awesome!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

LOST 2007 Emmy Nominations: Primetime Emmy Update

"Expect the worst, but hope for the best."

I don't know who said this, but I think that person is a freaking genius.

Days before the 2007 Primetime Emmy statuettes were handed out, TV critics and bloggers have touted the just-ended mafia series The Sopranos as the drama series that would sweep the awards in the drama category.

So today, I watched "Through The Looking Glass" online, and then the "Pilot Parts 1 & 2" and the season one finale "Exodus Parts 1 & 2" on DVD. I didn't even watch the ceremonies.

Just to recap, LOST went zero-for-two at the Creative Emmys last week. The following were LOST's nominations for the Primetime Emmys:

Outstanding Directing For A Drama for Jack Bender's direction of "Through The Looking Glass"

Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series for Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse's writing of the same episode

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series for Michael Emerson's portrayal of Benjamin Linus and for Terry O'Quinn's portrayal of John Locke

As predicted (by everyone else), Alan Taylor won the directing statuette for The Sopranos. Also, David Chase won the writing award for The Sopranos' series finale.

The Sopranos also took the Outstanding Drama Series award that LOST was snubbed for. I'm pretty sure Darlton are consoling themselves with the fact that a worthy series won the best drama series award. If Boston Legal won, then we'd all be so pissed off.

The beautiful thing about tonight is that LOST won one award. It was a long time coming too.

Terry O'Quinn, our beloved John Locke, took home the Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series award!!!



Way to go, Terry! Woo hoo!!!

He was nominated in the same category with Naveen Andrews in the 2005 Primetime Emmy Awards, but lost to William Shatner of Boston Legal. Such is an example of the injustice in this world.

Although injustice and unfairness in the entertainment industry is very common, the Lord still rewards those who deserve accolades when they deserve it.

LOST may have been snubbed in the outstanding drama series category, but Terry O'Quinn's exemplary acting has finally been recognised.

Congratulations, Terry!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

LOST Moving to Mondays?

DocArzt from The Tail Section wrote about a rumour going around that ABC is moving LOST to Mondays at 8 PM EST. I'm guessing, it's actually 8/7 Central.

Monday? So, Wednesday isn't going to be the best day ever?

Not that I don't like it. CSI: Miami is also on Mondays at 10 PM. Which means two of my favourite shows are on the same night. Matthew Fox, Josh Holloway, and Adam Rodriguez on Monday nights? Now, who's going to dislike that?

Also, Heroes is on Mondays at 9 PM, as well as 24. Apparently, Prison Break is on the rumoured timeslot on Fox, so its ratings may suffer especially from those who love LOST than any other show on Mondays. They may TiVo Prison Break and watch LOST instead. Hah!

Anyway, is ABC trying to avoid American Idol and go head-to-head with Prison Break instead?

Also, why eight o'clock? ABC doesn't want LOST to battle with Heroes? There are Heroes fans who are also LOST fans. Personally, I prefer to watch LOST at 9 PM, because the big TV is all mine during that time.

According to DocArzt, nothing is set in stone yet. It's just a rumour. DocArzt wrote the word "rumor" six times - yes, I counted them. That's more than enough to prove that nothing is definite until winter.

Not Just Retail Therapy

Many of us women go on shopping trips when we're upset, heartbroken, or sad. It's like an escape to us. We buy clothes, shoes, accessories, electronic gadgets, books, music, and/or movies. The idea of going to a shopping centre, entering a store, browsing through the sales rack or the new-arrivals rack, picking one item or two (heck, more than two), bringing the purchase to the cash register, and paying for it gives us a kind of thrill that men feel when they play or watch sports.

My sister is like that. When she's upset, she either goes for a long walk or goes to Home Sense or Pier 1 Imports. More often than not, she goes shopping for herself, her kids, or some other people. Although she's already paying two mortgages (owning two houses is never fun), she still makes a noticeable dent in her bank account that, in turn, makes her husband grumpy.

I think my sister (and I) inherited this shopaholic gene from our mother. Our dear mom didn't have lots of expensive escape back in Manila. Unfortunately, the first time she got really pissed off at us, she decided to escape to Morgan City, Louisiana, USA where my brother was. She was there for quite a few months. Whenever I talked to her, she complained about her favourite child. About a year after she came back she got dangerously upset at us, so she purchased a plane ticket to the Philippines. When we dropped her off at the Vancouver International Airport, my brother-in-law quipped that upsetting the women in my family is very expensive.

Well, I am my mother's daughter.

When I'm pissed off or depressed, I go to any of the local malls, usually to Chapters/Coles and HMV. Now that I've embraced online shopping, I buy my books/music/movies from Amazon.ca or Chapters.Indigo.ca. I downloaded iMesh and subscribed to Y! Music Unlimited so I could download songs faster and pay for them for less. (Yes, that's right: I pay for my music, unless I'm desperate for a particular song. When it becomes available, I buy it and then delete the bootleg version.)

But, now, I'm taking this expensive escape to a different level.

I'm actually thinking of purchasing my own place. A condo, to be specific.

I've always been someone who prefers owning things rather than borrowing them or renting them. If you can own it, why rent it?

Yes, I was born into a culture wherein an adult child can only leave the family home once he or she is married. (Even married adult children stay in the family home, but it's only because of exorbitant rent on sub par apartments.) But I am now living in North America where it's more than normal - expected - for a recent high school graduate to move out of the family home to go to college/university or to work.

Here's the deal: I have a difficult mother and sometimes difficult sister. Maybe it's in our genes - and after all, my mother's blood runs in our veins - but a cold war between any two of the three women is not uncommon. It's not easy to live with my mother. Which is why the idea of buying my own place crossed my mind in the first place.

Why a condo, and not a house or a townhouse? Well, first of all, it's only going to be me and perhaps a dog. I know my mother would want to live with me, but I don't, so it's just me. Also, I don't have a green thumb and I'm lazy so I wouldn't bother and I'll just pay for the maintenance of the condo complex front lawn. Lastly, I want to learn how to live on my own, because if I'm going to be eternally single, I'd need to get used to being alone.

I'm not in a hurry though. I'm still saving up money and trying to make up my mind about what I really want. Plus, I really need to learn how to cook and how to not dislike cleaning the bathroom. Most importantly, I'm waiting on the Big Guy Upstairs, sort-of like a divine sign that my condo-living dream coincides with His will for me.

It's funny because I listed a "Wanted: Condo" kind-of thing on Facebook Marketplace, and someone contacted me about it. We exchanged messages and she asked me what I'm looking for. I told her that I want at least a 2-bed/bath condo that's close to transit and located in either Burnaby or New Westminster, BC. She added me to her mailing list and now I get several e-mails with active listings everyday. (See? Facebook works!) Now, I have an unofficial real estate agent!

I know it's expensive, especially with the housing boom in the Greater Vancouver area these days. The 2010 Winter Olympics made it even more expensive as developers, Realtors, etc., all want to cash in before, during, and after the Olympics.

Besides, I want this new place of mine to be a permanent thing. It's not like retail therapy where one buys something to feel better, something impulsive and fleeting. This idea has crossed my mind for quite some time, but I'm only getting serious about it now.

If only God can grant me a generous dose of patience.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

LOST 2007 Emmy Nominations: Creative Arts Emmy Update

The Creative Arts Emmy® statuettes were handed out in Los Angeles yesterday, September 8th.

As you can recall, LOST is nominated in the following Creative Arts categories:

Outstanding Single-camera Picture Editing For A Drama Series
Outstanding Sound Editing For A Series

Unfortunately, LOST, well, lost in both categories. The single-camera picture editing award went to the Showtime show Dexter, while the sound editing award went to 24.

Let's just hope I'll have happier LOST news next week when the Primetime Emmy statuettes are handed out.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

100 Best TV Shows of All-TIME

TIME Magazine has just released their list of 100 best TV shows of all-time.

The list includes 24, The Cosby Show, American Idol, Arrested Development, The Simpsons, Friends, Deadwood, Felicity, Freaks and Geeks, I Love Lucy, M*A*S*H, The Office, The Sopranos, Sex and the City, Roots, Saturday Night Live, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

According to TIME Magazine's TV critic, James Poniewozik, he "polled friends and colleagues, read other lists and spent days watching DVDs and going to the Paley Center for Media to re-evaluate shows I hadn't seen in decades." He also set some guidelines:

It's My List... which means that it's unavoidably subjective, indefensible and shaped by my experience. I included British shows, for instance, but not many, and generally those that got wide exposure on American TV. Because I'm American, and we're like that.

... But It's Not All About Me. This list is not just about what I like or have fond memories of, or it would include Man vs. Beast and Lancelot Link: Secret Chimp. Like any critic, I relied not just on my gut but on aesthetic priorities. (Important: voice, originality, ideas, character and influence. Not so important: social conscience, moral values, educational content. I sincerely hope that no one over 5 watches TV to improve him or herself.)

No Grading on A Curve. There are shows that have been handicapped because they had to deal with restrictive broadcast standards, because the medium was new, because they had to get a bigger audience than boutique cable shows, and so on. This is not fair. It is also not my problem. I aimed to make a list of the 100 best TV shows, not the 100 best shows "considering what they had to put up with," "for their time" or "if you like that sort of thing."

Spread It Around. Is
The Price Is Right objectively equal to The Sopranos? Of course not. But TV would not be TV without game shows�and talk shows, and sports, and soaps, and videos and even commercials. TV should be smart, but TV should also be dumb. So while I judged each show on its merits, I also stepped back, looked at the list, and tried to give an overview of what TV is and has been: fiction and non, daytime and primetime, highbrow and low, broadcast and cable.

It's Not a Popularity Contest. This list features huge hits and commercial disasters. Some great shows have big universal themes and wide appeal; others have small audiences, not because people are stupid, but because they have themes (say, inside-show-business satire) that only so many people care about. I don't believe that the people are always wrong (or I'd never have picked
American Idol), but if I put shows on the list simply because a lot of other people would, I might just as well have thrown together Nielsen's top 100 and gotten the whole thing done in an hour.

Two Shows, One Slot. Where two shows with the same creators or talent had similar themes, milieus, characters or narrative styles, I generally picked one. So:
Monty Python but no Fawlty Towers; Cheers but no Frasier; Seinfeld but no Curb Your Enthusiasm; The Bob Newhart Show but no Newhart; My So-Called Life but no thirtysomething. I did include both versions of The Office because they were different achievements (the American is the better series, Ricky Gervais' the better performance), but also because—all together now!—it's my list.

The One-Year Rule: I considered only shows that debuted before 2006, to see if they held up beyond one season or (if they lasted a year or less) if they have held up over time. Sorry, Friday Night Lights.


There is one other show in this list of 100 best TV shows of all-time that shocked and delighted me...

The article for this TV show includes this very nice statement: "[I]t's a fine show on the level of character and writing, but what makes it a classic is that it's the finest interactive game ever to appear in your living room once a week."

Very nice, ain't it?

It also says this about this particular show: "[This show] proves that millions of people will support a difficult, intelligent, even frustrating story—as long as you blow the right kind of smoke at them."

Get it? Get it? Get it?

LOST!

There's no ranking whatsoever. But I was so, so happy when I saw The Tailsection headline about this TIME Magazine list.

On behalf of the creators, executive producers, cast and crew of LOST, I thank you, James Poniewozik, for choosing our beloved show as one of the best TV shows of all time. To me, LOST is the best TV show ever, and I thank you for recognising that.

Congrats to all of us who love LOST!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Darlton on New LOST Cast Members

Ooh, nice. Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse broke radio silence.

These LOST executive producers - called Darlton, for short - spoke with Jeff Jensen of Entertainment Weekly about the five new LOST cast members.

'Lost': Five Fresh Faces

Out of the five (Jeremy Davies, Ken Leung, Rebecca Mader, Lance Reddick, and Jeff Fahey), I've only seen Rebecca Mader. She was on The Devil Wears Prada as one of the Runway girls. There was no British accent on her character (unlike Emily Blunt's Emily who isn't British in the book) so I didn't know she was British.

It's nice to know that each new character will appear in more than one episode. So unlike Isabel, the Others' sheriff, who only appeared in Stranger in a Strange Land then disappeared. It's only when Darlton appeared on Comic-Con 2007 that we learned the character is dead.

So excited! So, so excited!

In the meantime, it's up to us - the hardcore fans and otherwise - to speculate and theorise on these new characters. Not to mention, everything about Season Four, and Seasons Five and Six.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Song of the Lonely and Depressed

Irvine

Written by Kelly Clarkson and Aben Eubanks
::Published by Smelly Songs/EMI April Music, Inc. (ASCAP), DigbyOmega Music (BMI)::
::Kelly Clarkson, My December (2007)::

Are you there?
Are you watching me?
As I lie here on this floor
They say you feel what I do
They say you’re here every moment

Will you stay?
Stay ‘till the darkness leaves
Stay here with me
I know you’re busy, I know I’m just one
But you might be the only one who sees me
The only one to save me

Why is it so hard?
Why can’t you just take me?
I don’t have much to go
Before I fade completely

Can you feel how cold I am?
Do you cry as I do?
Are you lonely up there all by yourself?
Like I have felt all my life
The only one to save mine

How are you so strong?
What’s it like to feel so free?
Your heart is really something
Your love, a complete mystery to me

Are you there watching me?
As I lie here on this floor
Do you cry, do you cry with me?
Cry with me tonight

Are you there?
Are you watching me?


Kelly Clarkson said in an interview that this song was written after a really crappy day, I believe the last stop in her Addicted tour, in Irvine, CA. I think Kelly was crying out to God, because she couldn't take it anymore, whatever it was that drove her to write this. She was wondering about the Christian claims that God is everywhere and is with us in everything.

I know the answer to her questions, I do. I know, in my mind and in my heart, that God is with us always. I feel Him weeping sometimes when I'm weeping.

I've had these dark days and nights, like she was singing about in "Irvine," and I don't deny that I sometimes felt that God was so far away.

These days, I've been feeling so lonely. I felt it the most on the night that I watched The Bourne Ultimatum after work. I could have called my friends, but with G taking care of her baby, L being very pregnant with her first baby, and the rest of them having busy careers, they'd decline anyway. Being surrounded by couples, families, and cliques didn't help my self-esteem that night. Sure, there were a few solitaires in the auditorium, but that still didn't help.

It's not easy being single. Especially if it's a self-imposed no-dating-for-a-year policy. The fact that my best friend A is happily married with a child made my single status just a little bit harder to live with. (I'm truly happy for her, but I gotta be honest: I can't help feeling envious.) Then G entered a relationship and had a baby; L secretly got married while in the Philippines and is now pregnant with her first child; J just got married; a few church friends got married and one of them just had a baby; A just got engaged; and C also got engaged!

What is happening to my friends???

Not only that. My so-called family is not helping. I've been sick twice this month and all I hear from my mother are variations of "I don't believe you're sick" and "You're going to get fired." Really supportive of you, mother. My boss treats me a lot better than my mother does. My sister snorts at my living-in-a-condo dreams. My niece and my nephew screw up a lot of things in my life. My brother-in-law is finishing my room in the basement, which is bound to make me feel a lot lonelier and colder this winter. And my mother recently admitted to me that my brother is her favourite child - which means she'd been lying to my sister and me since that chaotic and painful night in February 1997.

*Sigh*

Back to the double-edged sword that is my singleness. Do I need a man? I'm not gonna lie. Yes, I do. Do I need one now? Right now? Maybe.

I only want someone to love me - and for me to love - apart from my so-called family and friends. He doesn't have to be Antonio Banderas, Adam Rodriguez, JC Chasez, Matthew Fox or Matt Damon. I'm only asking God to make him - the one He's preparing for me - a true Christian (ahem, ahem!), someone who can make me laugh, who can stay with me through my many ups and downs, who will try his best to understand me (I only need him to try, because understanding me is not going to be easy for anyone), who will be honest with me (I don't want skeletons in the closet; if there's something I need to know - kids, ex-wives, etc - I want to know as early in the relationship as possible), who will be a good father to my future children, and who will be good to me.

Is that too much to ask?

God is probably reading this as I write and He must be saying, "Not yet, my dear, not yet." That's fine with me. But what if He was saying, "No, My daughter, I want you to be single for the rest of your life, for Me?"

I'd be sad, but I know it'll be all right. He has a plan for me and He know what's best for me. I only hope that He'll give me a dog and make me live in Switzerland while I serve Him without a husband and children.

But why do I still feel so alone?

I need a good cry...

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Al-Qaida Murder Plot Against Justin Timberlake???

I read on the morning paper that the al-Qaeda is plotting to kill Justin Timberlake, David Beckham, and P. Diddy, among others. The article said the al-Qaeda thinks these men represent the bad - "criminal" - Western influence on the Muslim youth.

Let's analyse their lives and influences, shall we?

Well, we all know Justin Timberlake as the ex-*NSYNCer who ditched his four friends to make it big on his own. When I say "big," I mean HUGE! ENORMOUS! GINORMOUS! What are his songs about? Initially about how Britney Spears cheated on him (allegedly), how he reacted (pissed off, of course!), and then he shot the "Cry Me A River" video that all but confirmed the cheating rumours. For creative and cathartic purposes, that's fine - although I was pissed off at him. Anyway, eventually his songs became about rocking our bodies, making love with senoritas, bringing the sexy back (I believe Prince snorted at this because he and I agree that sexy was never gone), his love, karma (about Elisha Cuthbert and his BFF Trace Ayala - cue "What Goes Around... Comes Around"), and summer love. Then he started making out with Janet Jackson (which, of course, led to the Superbowl half-time show in 2004) and dating Alyssa Milano, Jenna Dewan, and Cameron Diaz. After breaking up with Cameron Diaz, he (allegedly) hooked up with Scarlett Johansson and Jessica Biel, who is his current girlfriend. Also, he has created his own record label and, generally, life has been going great - wait, freaking excellent - for him. All of this is happening while his former band mates are trying to stay afloat in the entertainment business. Lance Bass came out, makes movies, produces movies, etcetera; Joey Fatone is now a TV host and Dancing With The Stars runner-up; Chris Kirkpatrick is now in that VH1 show Mission: Man Band with other boy band alums; and JC Chasez is struggling to get his new record Kate out (Jive truly sucks!). Can you tell Justin Randall Timberlake isn't one of my favourite people?


David Beckham, on the other hand, is a star soccer player from the UK, whose wife is the former Posh Spice. They have three boys and they recently moved to L.A. as David now plays for the Major League Soccer team L.A. Galaxy (although he's injured). I don't dislike him as much as Justin Timberlake, but I don't care for him either. I don't follow soccer, unless it's a FIFA World Cup year, and I've outgrown the Spice Girls. At best, I'm indifferent towards the Beckhams. Anyway, David Beckham is supposedly a very good soccer player, but I haven't seen him win a game for any of his teams (maybe he has, but I don't care anyway). Also, his wife is a notorious spender and is filming a reality show for NBC (I think) to depict their move to LA. And the couple spend a fortune on their sons, even in the most mundane of things. In short, they are rich and famous, but their lives are more about the hype than the substance - at least, so far (I wouldn't care anyway).


P. Diddy, also known as Sean Combs or Puff Daddy, is a mega-successful recording executive, back up singer, performer, producer of MTV's Making the Band, writer, arranger, clothing designer, and Broadway actor. He also has four children with two women, whom he never married. He has been involved in several legal battles, the most notable of which is the trial against him for weapons violation, bribery charges, and other charges related to a nightclub shooting on December 1999. He was eventually acquitted on all charges, but his co-accused, rapper Shyne, was convicted and sentenced to ten years in prison. As a performer/writer/record producer, he extensively sampled songs which has been heavily criticised by some. During the 2004 U.S. presidential elections, P. Diddy, among other celebrities, encouraged young people to vote with the "Vote Or Die" campaign. However, it was reported that Diddy, along with Paris Hilton and Ludacris, wasn't even registered to vote. Can you say hypocrisy?

Anyway, so here's what we've got: a pop/R&B superstar who writes sexually charged songs and bitter songs, a hyped-up sports star, and a hypocritical and at-times unoriginal hip hop mogul. Nice.

I went to the Wikipedia article on Islam (I know Wikipedia isn't exactly reliable, but it's a start) and didn't find any specific crime that would fit all three stars, except unlawful intercourse (between unmarried couples?) and consumption of alcohol, I guess.

So, if there are any Muslims (al-Qaeda-loving or otherwise) who read this entry, please tell me why the al-Qaeda would consider the above male stars as having criminal influences on Muslim youth.

What if it's true? What if the al-Qaeda attempts to murder any one of these men?

What would happen to those who love them? How would they react? Most likely, they'll demand that Osama and his friends die a really horrible death in the hands of the U.S. soldiers.

Would the soldiers care? The women perhaps?

Would I care? Hmm... I'm indifferent towards David Beckham and P. Diddy, at best, so I'd probably grieve for a moment then move on.

Justin Timberlake is a different story, though. I will not grieve. I will not be sad. I won't be too happy, but I definitely won't be sad. He deserves it.

Monday, August 6, 2007

"Cast Away" - The True Story of LOST's Creation

This is an interesting article...

"Cast Away" - Chicago Magazine - August 2007

Now I know why the credits look like this:



So it turned out, Jeffrey Lieber has no creative input whatsoever in the show's first three seasons and three remaining seasons. He's being credited as a creator just because he wrote the first draft of the pilot episode. That's cool. ABC recognised someone's hard work even though it was a one-time thing.

However, how come Mr Lieber gets "60 percent of the 'created by' credit, while Abrams and Lindelof split the remaining 40 percent" when Mr Lieber has never collaborated with J.J. Abrams and Damon Lindelof in the creative process?

How fair is that? Sure, Mr Lieber had the original idea. But that's peanuts - nothing - compared to the dedication that J.J. and Damon have put in the show.

Unfair.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Newsweek's "Why LOST Got Overlooked"

Here's a snippet of the Newsweek article on the 2007 Emmy Awards nominations announced last Thursday, 19 July 2007.

After winning the best-drama Emmy for its first season in 2005, "Lost" has now been shut out of the category two years in a row. But this time around, "Lost" didn't lose because its producers submitted the wrong episode. The show's third season was bumpy to say the least. About halfway through, many fans came close to writing it off entirely. But "Lost" recovered with a thrilling run of episodes at the end of the season, culminating with its instant-classic finale, titled "Through the Looking Glass." This was the episode that "Lost"'s producers submitted for Emmy consideration.

So what happened? You got me. The Emmys' odd, single-episode nominating process does put serialized dramas such as "Lost" in a tricky spot. It's impossible to appreciate an episode like "Through the Looking Glass" if you missed everything that led up to it. That's why so-called procedurals—programs with self-contained story lines that wrap up in an hour, such as "Law & Order," "CSI" and, more recently, "House"—have tended to fare well at the Emmys. But the process's natural bias against serialized shows didn't hurt "The Sopranos," or "Grey's Anatomy."

And here's the weird thing about this year's Emmys: it didn't exactly hurt "Lost," either. "Through the Looking Glass" earned well-deserved nominations in both the writing and the directing categories, but the show still failed to earn a nomination for best drama series. In other words, the academy decided that "Lost" was beautifully written and directed, but other than that, they weren't impressed. "Boston Legal" and "Heroes," meanwhile, earned only a directing nomination. And "House" was shut out of both writing and directing honors. Yet all three were nominated for best drama.

And this is supposed to make the LOST fans' feel better?

Fine. I admit, I feel a little better.

But then, does it mean that some changes in the Emmy Awards criteria are necessary? Considering that recognition for LOST's accomplishments (most importantly, it being the outstanding drama in the past season) suffers because the show's concept and format do not fit with the awards criteria, shouldn't the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences tweak its nomination criteria? Primetime television is changing, with unique shows such as LOST becoming popular. I think the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences should go with the changes.

That said, even if the Academy are not impressed with LOST's third season, I was. That's important, because this was the first season that literally glued my bum to the couch. Heck, I've become so involved with Season Three that I cried so much during Greatest Hits and Through the Looking Glass.

For me, LOST rules!!!

Ahem, ahem.

If you're interested in reading the full article, please click here.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

What Temperament Am I?

You Have a Melancholic Temperament

Introspective and reflective, you think about everything and anything.
You are a soft-hearted daydreamer. You long for your ideal life.
You love silence and solitude. Everyday life is usually too chaotic for you.

Given enough time alone, it's easy for you to find inner peace.
You tend to be spiritual, having found your own meaning of life.
Wise and patient, you can help people through difficult times.

At your worst, you brood and sulk. Your negative thoughts can trap you.
You are reserved and withdrawn. This makes it hard to connect to others.
You tend to over think small things, making decisions difficult.

Am I Left-Brained or Right-Brained?

Haha. I'm going Blogthings-crazy. The results are mostly correct. Like this one...

You Are 45% Left Brained, 55% Right Brained

The left side of your brain controls verbal ability, attention to detail, and reasoning.
Left brained people are good at communication and persuading others.
If you're left brained, you are likely good at math and logic.
Your left brain prefers dogs, reading, and quiet.

The right side of your brain is all about creativity and flexibility.
Daring and intuitive, right brained people see the world in their unique way.
If you're right brained, you likely have a talent for creative writing and art.
Your right brain prefers day dreaming, philosophy, and sports.

Interesting Quiz from Blogthings

Looks like, I should really learn Italian...

You Belong in Rome

You're a big city soul with a small town heart
Which is why you're attracted to the romance of Rome
Strolling down picture perfect streets, cappuccino in hand
And gorgeous Italian people - could life get any better?

Friday, July 20, 2007

Am I Happy Being Single?

You Are Pretty Happy Being Single

You have a full, fun life. And you definitely don't need love to be content.
Of course, being single can get you down a little. Especially when you've been single for a while.
But you know how to be patient and wait for the right person. You're life is too good to settle for anything!
Amen! Amen! Amen!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Nod Ya Head Six Times, Emmy Voters

So the day of reckoning for primetime TV dawned.

The primetime Emmy nominations were announced this morning. As you should know, I'm crazy about the seminal show LOST. I've been watching it since "Pilot Part 1" and I intend to watch the series finale sometime in May 2010. Anyway, I know - and most LOST fans will agree with me - that we had a fantastic season. Sure, it didn't start as well as some fans would like and we had to wait for thirteen weeks before a new episode, the Juliet-centric "Not In Portland," aired. Then the fun began for real. The season culminated in a heart-wrenching and shocking episode "Through The Looking Glass" that featured the so-called rattlesnake in the mailbox.

So today, at work, I opened the Yahoo homepage and followed the link to the 2007 Emmy nominations. Lo and behold, LOST is nominated, as follows:

Outstanding Directing For A Drama Series
Lost • Through the Looking Glass • ABC • ABC Studios
Jack Bender, Director

Outstanding Single-camera Picture Editing For A Drama Series
Lost • Through The Looking Glass • ABC • ABC Studios
Mark J. Goldman, Editor
Christopher Nelson, A.C.E., Editor
Stephen Semel, Editor
Henk Van Eeghen , Editor

Outstanding Sound Editing For A Series
Lost • A Tale Of Two Cities • ABC • ABC Studios
Thomas deGorter, Supervising Sound Editor
Paula Fairfield, M.P.S.E., Sound Editor
Lloyd Jay Keiser , Sound Editor
Alex Levy, Music Editor
Maciek Malish, M.P.S.E., Sound Editor
Cynthia Merril, Foley Artist
Carla Murray, M.P.S.E., Sound Editor
Doug Reed, Foley Artist
Joe Schultz, Sound Editor
Geordy Sincavage, Sound Editor

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series
Lost • ABC • ABC Studios
Terry O'Quinn, Terry O'Quinn as John Locke
Lost • ABC • ABC Studios
Michael Emerson, Michael Emerson as Ben

Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series
Lost • Through The Looking Glass • ABC • ABC Studios
Carlton Cuse, Written by
Damon Lindelof, Written by

I wasn't expecting LOST to be nominated in the outstanding drama series category. I've learned to expect the worst and hope for the best when it comes to my favourites. But I have to say, I was still disappointed that my favourite show isn't even nominated as best drama series. Season three was the first season I didn't dare to take my eyes off the TV while it's on. I wrote about it, I blogged about it. Heck, I dream about it. This was the season that got me even more addicted.

At least, Terry O'Quinn and Michael Emerson - a.k.a. the best antagonists, Locke and Ben, ever - are still nominated. And the writing. directing and editing for "Through The Looking Glass" got nods. That isn't so bad, is it?

Like I said on my Facebook status, I can't decide whether I'm going to be happy because LOST got nods - six great ones - or be sad and pissed off because LOST didn't get the nod for outstanding drama series.

I would have loved to see LOST up against Grey's Anatomy, House, Heroes (although I've never watched it), or The Sopranos. Boston Legal? Ugh. I prefer CSI.

I just hope and pray that LOST wins at least one award. It would truly suck if LOST didn't win anything.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Billboard Album Charts

Now that My December and Ms. Kelly have been released, I wonder how they fared in the Billboard album charts...

Billboard Top 200
My December debuted at number TWO! I don't care that Miley Cyrus beat Kelly to the top spot. Kelly rules! On its second week, Kelly's third record (and the most controversial) dropped to three, because T.I.'s new record topped the chart.

According to SOHH.com, Ms. Kelly moved 82,700 copies in its first week. It debuted at number SIX. Not bad, Ms. Kelly, not bad at all. Actually I didn't expect Ms. Kelly to crack the top 50! It was a very pleasant surprise.

Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums
Being the second bestselling new release this week, Ms. Kelly debuted at number TWO! Like I said, not bad at all.

Top Digital Albums
My December is the fourth most downloaded album. Woohoo!

Hopefully both CDs will climb the charts next week!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Houston Chronicle Review of "Ms. Kelly"

Check this article out on the Houston Chronicle website.

This is one of the most positive reviews of Kelly Rowland's Ms. Kelly.


July 5, 2007, 9:41PM

Fan inspiration

Destiny's Child's Kelly Rowland completes new CD, Ms. Kelly
By JOEY GUERRA
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle

As one-third of iconic girl group Destiny's Child, Kelly Rowland sang about being a self-sufficient diva — who still, of course, knows how to swivel her hips.

"I worked hard and sacrificed to get what I get," went the lyrics to a certain sassy Charlie's Angels tune. "Ladies, it ain't easy bein' independent."

Today, Rowland seems to have a new understanding of that girl-power credo. Her second solo disc, Ms. Kelly, arrived this week after several shuffled release dates and name changes.

"You have no idea how happy I am," Rowland said during a recent visit to Houston. She currently lives in Miami but has plans to move back "home" soon.

"It's been a journey, above anything."

Rowland, 26, began working on the project (originally dubbed My Story) in 2004. That version featured several midtempo grooves and ballads, but Rowland soon opted to punch things up with more upbeat, club-friendly tracks.

It proved to be a difficult decision.

"I think that when I had to push my CD back — although I had to do it — it still hurt, and it set me back a little bit in the studio," Rowland said.

"I had no creative ideas. I felt blank. I think it was just out of the sadness. I didn't want to disappoint my fans, but I did want it to be right.

"I probably spent a week and a half, two weeks like that, where I was just blah."

Inspiration and motivation returned, Rowland says, via fan enthusiasm and words of encouragement on blogs. She gave the disc a snappier title and officially introduced it via slinky first single Like This. The tune, featuring stylish rapper Eve, is a top-10 hit on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.

"I just felt like it was very sassy and personal," Rowland says of the title. "People have started calling me that recently."

Last weekend, she showcased a few songs from Ms. Kelly, including simmering party-starter Comeback, at a pair of local events geared to the black community: Dr. Ian Smith's 50 Million Pound Challenge at Hermann Square in downtown Houston and Hip-Hop 4 HIV at Reliant Arena, which encouraged young adults to be tested for HIV/AIDS.

The Destiny's Child alum proved a comfortable solo presence and was clearly excited to finally be performing new material from the disc, which was originally supposed to hit stores last summer and was released Tuesday.

"A year and a half is a long time to record an album and basically wait," Rowland said. "It feels so good to say, 'It's really coming out on Tuesday!' It's the best feeling in the world."

The extra time proved beneficial. Ms. Kelly is a marked improvement over Rowland's 2002 solo debut, Simply Deep, which failed to showcase her flirty, assured personality. (It did, however, boast a global hit in Dilemma, a gorgeous duet with rapper Nelly.)

"This album took time for Kelly to find herself as a pop artist. I'm very proud of the record she's made," said Mathew Knowles, who manages Rowland along with his superstar daughter Beyoncé.

He also oversaw Destiny's Child, which sold more than 40 million records worldwide on the strength of such hits as Bills, Bills, Bills; Say My Name; Bootylicious; and Lose My Breath.

"I've said it before: Most people don't know just how talented each of them are individually," Knowles said.

The new disc finds Rowland exploring a variety of styles. Work is a Scott Storch-produced club thumper that begs for a tightly choreographed video. Flashback and Better Without You are standouts that recall the noirish urban grooves of Aaliyah and Brandy.

Rapper Snoop Dog cameos on the laid-back Ghetto, and R&B singer Tank duets on The Show. Solange Knowles, Beyonce's younger sister, co-wrote Love.

But it's Rowland's alternately sexy and serious delivery that anchors the disc.

"I wanted people to hear my voice," Rowland said. "I took risks on this album. ... I just let my ear lead me. It was just whatever felt good to my soul. I did it completely for me."

The mood shifts three-fourths of the way into Ms. Kelly, marked by a haunting interlude that finds her addressing a breakup — likely her own. Rowland was engaged to Dallas Cowboy Roy Williams, but the couple split in 2005.

"Was about to say 'I do' when I know it wasn't meant," Rowland sings during Still in Love With My Ex. It's an unflinching moment of honesty and one of eight tunes she co-wrote on the disc.

The writing process "was very therapeutic for me," Rowland said. "I allowed myself to be really vulnerable. I figured if it wasn't supposed to be on paper, and I wasn't supposed to record it, then it wouldn't have happened.

"Obviously, other people have these feelings as well. It's important for people to relate to you in your music and your lyrics."

Rowland's illustrious musical history has already allowed her to connect with millions of fans worldwide. And though Destiny's Child officially disbanded last year, a reunion seems imminent.

The trio was back together, briefly, during a vibrant performance at last month's BET Awards. And they're seen dancing together in Beyoncé's Get Me Bodied music video.

"I'm still trying to comprehend it, just take in everything we did," Rowland said. "I think it literally only hit me when we got our star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

"I still don't believe it. It's incredible."

joey.guerra@chron.com

Kelly Clarkson in Live Earth US - NYC

Live Earth concerts day!

I didn't get to watch any of the Live Earth concerts today because I was asleep most of the day. Luckily, the full concerts are available on demand on Live Earth on MSN.

I'm watching the Live Earth USA - New York right now, hoping that I'll get to see Kelly Clarkson perform her set.

She performed the following:
  1. Walk Away

  2. How I Feel

  3. Never Again

  4. Sober

  5. Since U Been Gone

Here's the article:


Kelly Clarkson, still our 'Idol'


Looking very rock chick in layered black-and-red tanks, black pants, heavy makeup and lank hair, Kelly Clarkson opened her set with a driving, raspy-throated version Walk Away. American Idol's prodigal daughter admired the stage's recycled-tire backdrop ("It's really cool, I'm going to steal their idea for my show") before playing her current single, Never Again.


"Man, there are some killer bands today that I've never seen, I'm really stoked," she said, then launched into an intense Sober. "Sing it!" she commanded the crowd as she wrapped up with Since U Been Gone. -- D.F., E.G.


Posted at 07:53 PM/ET, July 07, 2007 in Live Earth


Also, earlier I turned the TV on and caught Daniel Levy of MTV Canada and Devon Soltendieck or MuchMusic commenting on Kelly's performance of Since U Been Gone. They said it was amazing that everyone in the Giants Stadium sang along when she sang her Billboard Hot 100 #2 single. They said the stadium shook while everyone sang Since U Been Gone. It wasn't obvious on the streaming video on Live Earth on MSN, but I'll believe those guys because they were there!


I wish I'd been there!


KELLY CLARKSON ROCKS!!!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Cerberus in Cloverfield

I haven't seen the film Transformers but I've heard of the mystery trailer that premiered before the movie.



There's a better video but embedding was disabled by request, so if you want to see it, please click here.

Apparently, it's code-named Cloverfield and is produced by LOST's creator J.J. Abrams. Paramount Pictures is behind it and it will be in theatres on 18 January 2008.

That's all we know about it.

Anyway, this trailer shocked and intrigued everyone, and it even reached CNBC!



There's also a guy named Nostalgia Critic who rehashed the trailer and speculated about it. It's so funny. But I must warn you, the next video has some coarse language in it.



Wonder what this is...

Cerberus (LOST's Smoke Monster)???

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Two-Hour Sleep, Anyone?

I survived it.

I only slept for two hours last night. Two hours.

Well, my insomnia came back with a vengeance during my three-week vacation. But I was asleep by midnight the night before I came back to work.

What happened? Dunno.

Was I depressed? Hmm... Not quite.

Were there things in my mind? Yeah. Work and my outfit for the morning (that is, this morning).

I was tired, very tired. I just couldn't sleep.

I tried breathing evenly as though I were asleep, but it failed. Imagine that? I closed my eyes and tried to clear my mind, but it failed again. I tried listening to folk/jazz, as in Theresa Sokyrka (Kalan Porter's runner-up in Canadian Idol Season 2), but her songs didn't put me to sleep. Maybe I should have listened to Patti LaBelle's Greatest Hits CD?

I finally fell asleep just before three in the morning. As in, 3 AM.

Guess what time I have to wake up?

Five o'clock in the morning.

And what was my day like?

Before I showered, I drank hot chocolate - which should have been coffee. Heck, I'll take black coffee or espresso. The cold shower helped a little bit to keep me awake. In the bus, I tried to keep my brain busy by reading Anna Karenina. At least, that worked. On the SkyTrain, I read - skimmed, actually - the new and improved 24 hours free newspaper. While waiting for the 116 bus, I started the crossword. Pretty normal stuff.

Instead of the normal stuff that I did, I wanted to go back to bed.

Anyway, at work, I keyed five invoices in the system. I also finished the revenue accruals for the Helifor manday billings and for Myra Falls, which I could have billed if I only received all the backups for the manday counts summary for the period ending June 22/07!

But all I wanted to do was sleep.

Well, I managed to last the day without actually falling asleep involuntarily.

I need to make sure this doesn't happen again. Ever again.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Stephen King and LOST

I chanced upon this Entertainment Weekly interview among EW, Stephen King, J.J. Abrams, Damon Lindelof, and Carlton Cuse on the Stephen King thread on the Lostpedia Forums (which I've been frequenting since last Saturday). The LOST writers love Stephen King.

Click here to read the interview.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

LOST's Cerberus

Apparently, YouTube doesn't let people post videos on their Blogger sites directly from YouTube. Particularly, mine.

Anyway, here's a compilation of LOST's Smoke Monster's appearances from Seasons 1 to 3. Unfortunately, it doesn't include Cerberus's appearance in "Left Behind" - which appeared after "Exposé."

Here's the link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TaqbyekJHHs

I'll embed the video too. - in case it works.



Here's also Cerberus in "Left Behind."

This one is when it appeared to take pictures of Juliet while Juliet and Kate were hiding from Cerberus.



This one is when it chased Juliet and Kate and got thwarted by the sonic fence.



Enjoy.