Known Johnson

May 11, 2007

Favorite things

Filed under: Various and Sundry — Tom @ 1:06 pm

I’m starting a brand new thing here on the site, partially just to make sure I keep active here (so I don’t focus all my time over at Lookout For Hope) but more because there are just things that don’t fit anywhere that occur during the week that might not warrant a full post by themselves but would qualify as something I really enjoyed and want to mention anyway. Or maybe they’re just some things that happened. Maybe not “favorites” – just something. Whatever. Don’t be harsh.

And thus was born “favorite things”! So, without further ado, this week’s favorite things:

Lost: holy crap, what a great, weird episode. Those that abandoned Lost are really missing out. Sure, they dragged their heels for a while and that 6 episode thing last fall where we watched Jack, Kate, and Sawyer sit in cages wound up being pretty pointless, but starting earlier in the spring, Lost has been back at season one quality, aside from a couple of stray episodes. This week, however, might have been the ultimate Lost episode. If you gave up because you weren’t getting answers, you gave up too soon – we’ve been consistently getting answers this latter portion of the season (along with new, equally intriguing questions.) And they’ve been doozies!

Robert Plant’s Pictures At Eleven and The Principle Of Moments remasters – I’ve never given Plant’s solo career the time I should have, not after years in my youth listening to what really weren’t very strong albums (Now & Zen, Manic Nirvana). I’ve always thought he had some great singles but not particularly great albums, so I never bothered to give them a shot – until this week, when I sampled his first two post-Zeppelin albums, Pictures At Eleven and The Principle Of Moments, which recently were remastered (they were previously available remastered only in the 10-disc Nine Lives box.) And, man, have I been missing out. While after these two albums he quickly fell victim to 80s production values, these two albums are absolutely awesome. While I’m annoyed that I missed out on them for so long, I’m kind of glad that I get to discover them now.

The Office I’m of the belief that most “super-sized” sweeps episodes are not stronger than regular-length episodes, and last night’s was no different (last week’s was far stronger) but this is still by far the funniest show on TV. Key moments go to HR rep Toby, who Michael refused to allow to go on the beach trip, for his unmasked disappointment expressed when offering Pam his suntan lotion when she commented that she needed it because she was wearing a two-piece (and I think many of us guys agree, Toby, but we never got a payoff in the episode.) Creed also got one of the best moments – just two brief bits where he was seen in the water catching a fish with his own hands, then was later seen upset at missing out on the hotdog-eating contest, holding the bones of said fish in his hand.) I think my favorite – and he’s always a favorite – was Stanley, who, in an attempt to win Michael’s favor and therefore the management position, tried to be positive and happy for once. If you couldn’t guess, my favorite moments of The Office involve the smaller characters.

Neil Peart: Ghost Rider Not so much a “favorite thing” as an update. For a couple of months I’ve been reading Rush drummer Peart’s memoirs of his days following the loss of his daughter (car accident) and wife (cancer) within 10 months of each other, and I just don’t seem to be making much headway. I can be a slow reader. I don’t like to read fast. I don’t find much satisfaction in that, but this is really slow. I think what it is is that it’s unpleasant. Rush is my favorite band, but reading about the pain he’s suffering is very difficult, even if it informs the songs he would later write. I just don’t know that I’m going to make it through. It’s hard to read page after page of mentions of pain, not to mention that there is a lack of forward story motion. I realize it’s his real story, but, I don’t know, it might have been edited down a bit more to make it move forward a little less slowly. Maybe I’m just not a good audience for this type of writing – I’ve never been a big fan of pretty much any autobiographical writing pretty much for all of these reasons.

Cell phones It’s time for a new phone. My phone had a crack in the plastic over the display for something like a year. Sometime last week, I think it was, I dropped it on the floor of my truck while I was driving and moved it with my foot. Little did I guess the sheer power harnessed within my very foot, for I crushed the clear plastic without realizing it. I picked it up to find a bunch of shards of plastic in there, but the phone still works. It’s just ugly and uncomfortable. It’s also almost three years old now, amazingly, and I’ve pretty much hated it the entire time I’ve owned it. It’s a big phone. I don’t need anything special, but I definitely want a flip-phone, as this one was not and I think it was my first non-flipper and now I see why most phones are. One thing to know about me and phones is that I don’t really use them. I don’t call people. I’m not a phone person. Email is my thing. I’ll call if I have to, but I’m just not a big talker. I use my phone maybe one minute a day. But I get why phones are important and it’s been a very handy/important thing to have, especially when you have children, so we’re going to switch to those “pay as you go” phones with the refill cards. That concept just makes sense. Buy the phone, buy a card for like $25, and make sure to use it up in 90 days or get a new refill in that time. I can live with that. But $60 a month for something I barely use? Not making a whole lot of sense. But this time I get a phone with a camera. It seemed totally pointless in the past, but now I have had dozens of times when I’ve thought “damn, if only I had a camera” – not something I NEED to have a great picture of, but something stupid I would have loved to have gotten a picture of. I will rectify.

Leaving work two hours early because the boss said so I can only think of one thing better than that, and that is not working that day at all.

Oh, and this:

I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve watched that this week.

(If you’re totally confused, and you probably are because, well, you’re a normal human being, it’s from Cartoon Network’s Tim And Eric Awesome Show Great Job!. I’m certain that about 95% of the public will hate this show, but for those 5% of us who enjoy bizarre humor like this, this is a gold mine.)



  1. That video is the creepiest thing I think I’ve ever seen.

    Regarding Peart’s books: have you read “Traveling Music?” I’ve flipped through it a few times at Borders and keep meaning to buy it. It looks quite interesting.

    Comment by Chris — May 13, 2007 @ 11:09 am | Reply

  2. I haven’t gotten to it yet. It’s on the bookshelf, along with his latest, Roadshow, but I’m trying to read them in order. This one’s keeping me slowed down so I can’t get to it! However, Alissa read it and I believe she liked it (he apparently has some very unusual tastes in music), but got sidetracked late in it and never finished it – I believe this was around the time Amanda was born, so she has a good excuse.

    Comment by Tom — May 13, 2007 @ 11:28 pm | Reply

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