I Was Looking for A Good Laugh…

…but never really got it.

Yesterday’s VP debate was quite uneventful. I was hoping for a train wreck, given who is running for Vice President. Sarah Palin, who reads ALL newspapers and magazines, but can’t name one specifically, and Joe Biden, who talks before thinking and has been labeled “the gaffe machine”. I was hoping to laugh and maybe wince at times.

But it didn’t happen. The debate was ok. Sure, the candidates talked around some of the subjects. Sure, there were some things that were said that weren’t factually correct. In the end, though, both candidates did well. Sarah Palin seemed charming, didn’t get that “deer in headlights” look and when she didn’t want to answer, skillfully changed the subject to something she knew (most of the time it was energy). Joe had the facts and made sure not to look like he was attacking or talking down to Sarah, though sometimes he restated numbers too many times.

In the end, I think Sarah did MUCH better than I expected, but I feel that Joe had the upper hand. Whether or not he was the clear winner is debatable - I’m sure Sarah’s demeanor and straight talk is what some voters want to hear. But I feel like Biden had a good understanding of what he was talking about and he would make an excellent Robin to Barack’s Batman.

To end this, I’d like to post a picture that Redpac sent me that completely tore my shit up when I saw it. I have no idea why, but I totally laughed out loud.

CNN Rick Rolled

If you have no idea why I find it so funny, google “rick rolled”.

Emmy Awards Play by Play

7:01 - I liked the opening, with television actors giving their favorite lines

7:03 - I’m not sure about having 5 hosts for the awards, we’ll see how things go! But I have to say, Heidi looks DAMN sharp in a suit, and I love it that she’s taller than the rest of the guys.

7:08 - Oh god, they’re bringin gup William Shatner. God help us. I feel a disrobing happening! And there it is…Heidi in sparkling hot pants.

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7:09 - Tina Fey’s figure is incredible. Amy Poehler, not so much. Oh wait, is she pregnant? They’re presenting supporting actor…I’m pulling for Kevin Dillon because I freakin’ LOVE Johnny Drama. And the winner is……Jeremy Piven. All good - he’s a Chicago boy! Nice burn on the opening segment.

7:12 - Josh Groban is going to sing TV’s greatest theme songs? I’m afraid that’s going to sound awkward, I mean, come on, Josh Groban singing “The Facts of Life”?

7:14 - I’m sorry New York, I still hate Macy’s. Although I admit to having shopped there because the temptation of Clinique Bonus Days is stronger than my dislike for the store.

7:19 - Supporting actress in a comedy…I’m pulling for Amy Poehler because she’s had an AMAZING season on SNL. Jean Smart wins. Mmm, that’s nice. I’ve seen Samantha Who. It’s a funny show. Jean thanks Christina Applegate, man, I really hope that Christina wins for best Comedy actress!

7:29 - Supporting actor in a drama - Michael Emerson was born to win this Emmy! He’s incredible on LOST and ever scene he’s in is incredible. I’m tired of Shatner! However, Zeljco Ivanek wins. Well, that’s close - he starred as Juliette’s husband on LOST.

7:32 - Ricky Gervais is always funny. I love the montage of exceptance speeches, especially the Colbert/Stewart win from last year. It was a great bit, and Steve Carrell does a great job keeping a straight face. So far, the best moment of the night.

7:43 - I love Conan O’Brien. He’s presenting supporting actress in a drama series. I think I’m pulling for Sandra Oh…she had a lot to deal with on Grey’s Anatomy, though I’d also love Chandra Wilson to win, too. But, they split the votes and Diane Weist wins.

7:45 - Male geeks of the world rejoice - Jennifer Love Hewitt and Hayden Panettiere are on to present! They’re presenting the writing awards, this award is always the best one to watch, just to see how they present the writers. Conan’s seemed like it was going to be kinda boring as they showed what looked like a class picture of children from all over the world, but in the end it zooms out to a picture of Conan and Angelina Jolie’s kids.

8:02 - Oh, the moment that we’ve been waiting for - Josh Groban. It feels weird - the theme to Friends was just manic and a little scary. However, they get extra points for bringing out Animal during the Muppet show theme, and extra credit for doing South Park. I feel like I’m watching a show on the cruise ship again. I can’t tell if I like it or not! Josh’s voice, to me, is much more appropriate for the Carol Burnett show than it is, um, the Fresh Prince of Bel Air. But he was a great sport, and pretty gutsy to take it on!

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8:08 - Laura Linney wins an award for John Adams. I actually watched that - it was pretty good, and hopefully one day she gets an Oscar. She’s a terrific actress. I think it’s great that she thanks “the community organizers that helped form our country”. Was that a dig at Sarah Palin for being dismissive of Obama’s work as a community organizer?

8:22 - Pushing Daisies wins! That’s so awesome - it’s my favorite new show from the last season. If you haven’t watched it, make sure to catch it this year.

8:28 - Tina Fey wins for something. I’m not really paying attention right now because Ben has fallen asleep and I’m using this sleepy time to clip his toenails and give his hair a trim - something I’m unable to do when he’s awake because he’s a spaz. I really don’t care if I mess up his haircut because we’re going to be cutting most of it off in October for a wedding anyway!

8:42 - This “National Stay at Home Week” thing ABC’s got going on is pretty dumb. Sad thing is, I’ll probably stay at home this week because Dancing with the Stars and Heroes are premiering this week!

8:43 - Laurence Fishbourne is taking over for William Peterson? That’s pretty cool.

9:00 - It was so funny to see Kathy Griffith all flustered by an out of control Don Rickles. I could hardly understand half of what he’s saying! Too bad it’s blatantly obvious that the show is running overtime. Loved it when Tom Hanks called Sally Fields “Mama”. I’m really hoping that Paul Giamatti wins for Best Actor - he hasn’t won an Oscar nor has he won an Emmy. It’s about time.

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9:38 - A lot has happened since Ben woke up and I’ve been trying to get him to go to sleep (he saw Tom Bergeron and thought Dancing with the Stars was on). Bryan Cranston wins an Emmy, and I’m so happy for him - he’s did such great work on Malcolm in the Middle, and he’s totally transformed now.

9:42 - Tina Fey wins again! Best Actress for a Comedy - it was a really tight race, and all the actresses were deserving. You know, if it wasn’t for Lorne Michaels, she would still probably be behind the scenes writing instead of in front of the camera making us laugh.

9:52 - Mary Tyler Moore is still beautiful, but her arms are so skinny!

9:54 - 30 Rock wins for Best Comedy, no big surprise there! Tina Fey reminds people of different ways they can catch the show. Hopefully they get more watchers now, though that probably won’t happen. I’ll still love them!

9:56 - LOST was nominated for an Emmy? I didn’t know, though I doubt they’ll winn. Mad Men wins, and I’ve never seen the show before. Maybe I should check it out!

9:58 - Wow, the show has ended early. What a surprise!

All in all, it was an OK show. Really, I don’t know why these shows need hosts at all. I’d be happy with a big booming voice coming out of nowhere announcing the presenters. I’m glad that 30 Rock won so many awards, though truthfully I don’t watch as much TV anymore so I don’t catch it on as much as I’d like.

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Any of you out there watch it? What’d you think?

Olympics Best and Worst - Beijing Edition

I did this for the Winter Olympics in Torino, so I thought it might be a nice tradition. I’ve been watching quite a bit of the Olympics, though I don’t have the time or strength to watch it all the time. All in all, this has been an INCREDIBLE Olympics, from the political drama to Michael Phelps quest to the stories that fall in between the cracks, it’s been a good two weeks.

Here’s my highlights:

  • Best Part of the Opening Ceremony - to me, it had to have been the Tai Chi.  Their lines were incredible, and it made me realize that we could never do anything like that in the US.  We’d have people sticking out all over the place!
  • Opening Ceremony Tai Chi

  • Worst Opening Ceremony Outfits - Come on, Hungary, what were you thinking?  Such beautiful girls looked like they were forced to were outfits from their grandmothers’ closets.
  • Hungarian Olympic Style

  • Best use of Humans During the Opening Ceremony - Seriously, how did they do that Cube/Bouncing Block thing…even after the third time of watching it, it baffled me how they could have done it so perfectly, making waves with the blocks at different levels - there weren’t even any real beats to the music!
  • Worst National Case of Milli Vanilli - Poor Yang Peiyi, not deemed cute enough by her country to sing at the Olympics.  I feel for ya, girl.
  • Best Unspoken Requirement for Men’s Gymnastic Teams - that you need to have at least one hot guy.  See below for samples:
  • Mens Gymnastics

  • Worst Follow-Through of Trash Talking - The French Men’s 4×100 freestyle relay team, saying "We’ll smash the Americans" before the race, and ending up second behind the Americans.  What makes the victory even more sweet was the NBC commentators saying that the US team had no chance…which brings us to…
  • Best 46.06 Seconds Ever - That was the time that Jason Lezak swam his incredible anchor leg of the 4×100 freestyle relay.  When he was the first one to touch the wall I literally screamed in happiness.
  • Worst Time for an Interview - Right after 15 year-old diver Haley Ishimatsu learned she didn’t make the finals, she was interviewed by NBC.  Even before the interview started I could see her eyes were puffy, and I could feel it coming.  Poor girl could hardly answer any questions she was so emotional.  She was a good sport and said the right things, like, "It was a great experience, I had fun" etc.  But I think that the press should let people have time for their emotions, especially ones so young.
  • Best Post Olympics Plans - Misty May and Kerri Walsh want babies.  Walsh: "We need a baby…it’s that time." May: "We need the team of the future!"
  • Worst Show of Happiness at Getting a Silver Medal - Alicia Sacramone.  Such a pretty girl, and I know that she felt the weight of the loss of the gold medal on her shoulders.  But come on!  You’re at the Olympics, and you’ve got a silver medal, more than most of the Olympians that you stood on the field with during the opening ceremonies could ever hope to get.  Cheer up, sourpuss!
  • Best Sport to be a Volunteer For - When Kerri Walsh lost her wedding ring while blocking a spike, the Chinese volunteers brought in volunteers and metal detectors after the match to find it.  One lucky guy found the ring, and in return received some US flags, some Olympic pins, and a pat on the ass by Kerri Walsh.
  • Worst Second of the Best 9+ Seconds Ever - Was it really necessary for Usain "Lightning" Bolt to stretch out his arms and celebrate during the last second of his 100m dash?  Watching this kid run is like watching me run against Ben - he makes it look so easy when he beats these amazing athletes.  What would have happened if Bolt ran the whole way?  How low would he have brought the world record?  Now we’ll never know. However, I don’t agree with the IOC reprimanding him for being a poor sport - this guy is making the sport exciting! If you’re going to reprimand someone, reprimand China for lying to get the Olympics.
  • Best Reaction After Getting Your World Record Smashed - Michael Johnson, 2 time Olympian and previous 100m record holder, punched the air, laughed, jumping and shouting "Oh my god!" as he watched Usain "Lightning" Bolt run and win the 100m dash.  Although he has no longer the record holder, Johnson was totally excited to see such an amazing race.
  • Worst Cover-Up - The Chinese gymnastics team saying that their athletes are 16 years old.  When you’re going to fake documents so your team can win golds, the least you can do is google them so you can delete any reference of their ACTUAL ages.  You may censor the internet in your country, but the rest of the world can still find these things out.
  • Best Random Facts Blog - Yahoo’s "Fourth Place Medal".  They answer such obscure questions like, "Why do divers shower after diving?" (to keep loose),   "What is that black stuff on Kerri Walsh’s arm?" (kinesio tape that supports her muscles) and "Who was that really hot chick with Paraguay during the opening ceremonies?" (Leryn Franco, javelin thrower).
  • Worst Case of Team Unity - Both the men’s and women’s 4×100m relay teams DROPPED their batons in the qualifying heats. Nice.
  • Best Den Mother - Old lady Dara Torres (I kid!) went up to one of the officials during one of her semi’s. Why? To ask the official to hold up the race while a fellow competitor changed suits after finding a rip. After talking to the official, Dara talked to the other girls (because seriously, to Dara these were girls half her age) and told them to stay loose as they waited. It was obvious that they respected her. Once the race started, she took first in her heat, eventually winning silver.
  • Worst Show of Sportsmanship - Swedish wrestler Ara Abrahamian dropped his bronze medal on the mats in protest.  I don’t care if you thought you were wronged - go through the correct channels and suck it up while you’re on the podium and walking off.
  • Best Moment I’m Glad I Missed - When German weight lifter Matthias Steiner won his gold, he took out a photo of his wife who had died in a car crash and held it with him on the podium.  I swear, if I watched that, I would have cried.  Man, it makes me a little misty even posting the picture.  (and speaking of Misty, Misty May dumped some of her mother’s ashes on the volleyball court after their gold medal win)******
  • Matthias Steiner Wife

  • Worst Example of Getting Jinxed by the Media - Since the beginning of the games, NBC had been talking about how the Olympic Committee was going to get rid of women’s softball, probably since the US women had won all of the gold medals since it was included in the games.  Why keep a sport where one nation was unstoppable?  Then irony rains down in the form of a Japanese women’s team with an incredible pitcher.  They beat our girls and made them cry.  Goodbye softball.
  • Best Genuine Smile - Shawn Johnson, after winning gold in the balance beam.  All week she has smiled and hugged as she’d been surpassed by her team mate Nastia Liukin and various Chinese gymnasts.  When her team fell apart, she kept a smile on her face and stayed cool.  Unlike others, she smiled during the team medal ceremony.  But once she knew she got that gold, it was a different smile altogether!  A well deserved win for someone who didn’t pout and stayed positive during the competition.  I remember her smiling and waiting patiently to be the first one to hug Sandra Izbasa, who beat her top floor exercise score on the last routine.
  • Worst Use of Media Passes - After Michael Phelps got the record for most golds, he climbed up the stands to hug and kiss his mother.  however, he had a hard time coming back down because the press (or shall they be called paparazzi at this point?) had swarmed around him, leaving him no room to move.  He had to actually say, "Come on, guys" just so he could get back down to the pool.  Several times during the games I’ve seen photographers get way to close to the athletes…it’s annoying.
  • Olympics Paparrazi

  • Best Reason I Like Michael Phelps - (I know that makes no sense, but it had to start with "best", right?)  Yes, I know he broke Mark Spitz’ record.  Yes, I know he’s arguably the best Olympian ever (but come on, Carl Lewis was in 4 Olympics and won in 2 different events - running and long jump).  But to me, Michael could have been a guy that was full of himself and was going to waste his money away on booze (hello DUI!) and women.  Until I saw an interview with Bob Costas and his mother (not Bob’s, Michaels!).  Bob had asked Michael’s mom why she was going back to work as a school principal, and as she answered, Michael was looking at his mom with what could only be described as a look of pride.  He then said that to his mom, her kids (referring to the school children) are everything.  It made me melt a little to see him talk so proudly of his mom.
  • Worst Try At Making an Interview All About You - In an arranged interview with Phelps and Mark Spitz, Mark tried every way he could to talk about himself.  From talking about meeting Phelps in Athens several times (which I’m assuming is a dig for not being invited to Beijing this year) to saying that he was the inspiration for Michael’s quest for gold, there was one thing that was clear with Mark…it’s all about ME! ME! ME!
  • Best Event that I’ve Only Seen Five Minutes Of - I was flipping through the channels yesterday and came across the Rhythmic Gymnastics team event. The Chinese team was doing a routine with a rope, and let me tell you, it was beautiful! They were tossing them up in the air to each other and catching them, winding it around one of the girls and lifting her in the air…it was so pretty! But that was one of the last routines they had, so I didn’t get to see much more. I’ll definitely try and catch it tomorrow morning, er, night, ugh, this time difference confuses me!

Hmm, Maybe He’s a Little TOO Techno-Savvy

As most of you know, I work from home. Most of the time it’s great, but there are some downsides. One thing is that sometimes customers don’t know I work from home or what timezone I’m in, so they call really early or late.

Early this morning, I heard my work phone go off in the other room, my “office”. I decided to let it go to the answering machine, since I was still in bed. I heard the answering machine go off, and instead of hearing my voicemail greeting, I heard Ben’s little voice blabbering. It turns out, he figured out how to change the greeting on my machine, which isn’t an easy feat since you have to click on the settings button and then click on the record button right after.

I’ve been so proud of him for learning how to use a computer mouse to play his games and how to click the Wii button to shoot ducks, but I think I need to start teaching him that not all electronics are for little boys to play with!

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So You Think You Can Dance

Tonight is the finale of So You Think You Can Dance, which I have been absolutely loving this season. My favorite is Katee, who has always been entertaining. There have been so many awesome performers this season, it’s been hard to choose just one, but Katee seems to have it all and deserves to win. I also have a soft spot for Joshua, because he’s like a loveable big-butted teddybear. Whenever I think of him doing the Disco, it makes me giggle inside.

Anyway, here’s Joshua and Katee’s awesome Wade Robson routine from last night (how I’ve missed you, Wade!).

Also, here’s the final four group dance. When I see it, I think of little kids, out of school, dancing, playing and just enjoying life. A little quirky, but that’s Mia MIchaels for you! (no need to watch all 8 minutes…)

I need to say something - last week when my friend Jen was over we were talking about Cat Deeley, the host of So You Think You Can Dance. I think she doesn’t get the credit she should…sure, she doesn’t come up with quick one-liners, and sometimes wears things that makes me want to cringe, she is absolutely adorable. She’s cute as a button, and it’s obvious that she cares about the contestants. She’s like a little den mother to them, chatting up with them, giving them hugs, and even sticking up for her little pups when the judges are being too harsh. They’ve got an Emmy for reality show hosts now - too bad she’s not nominated!

Who Votes for These Things?!?!?!

If you watch either “So You Think You Can Dance” or “America’s Best Dance Crew” and don’t know yesterday’s results, read no further!!!

I’ll leave a little space for you so you can avert your eyes.

SO WHAT IS UP WITH THE PEOPLE WHO WERE OUSTED YESTERDAY?!?!?!?

First of all, in SYTYCD, I was thinking it was Comfort’s time to go. I was flabbergasted last week (yeah, you heard it, I said FLABBERGASTED) when Kherington was booted. But I could see the logic behind it - she had started incredibly strong but hadn’t had many strong performances in the weeks before. I wasn’t happy, though…she was one of my favorites. I also loved Comfort (though it seems like Kat Deeley loves her more), but it was her time to go.

But THIS week, I cannot BELIEVE that Will and Twitch were in the bottom two! Will, by far, is the best technical and most gifted dancer they have. I think it was one of those cases where people don’t think they have to vote for them, and they vote for the person they are scared would be voted off, which in this case, was Mark. It was evident on his face that he believed that he was going to be in the bottom two, and I wanted to cry when Twitch found out he was in the bottom.

WILL!!!! WHY WILL!!??! He was an incredible sport about it, and really, he no longer needs to win the show to go far. It may even be a blessing that he’s not the winner because now he’s free to do whatever he wants. People will be knocking his door down with offers. But that doesn’t make the sting any less - he should have lasted longer. I guess the world isn’t ready for James Brown!

THEN…

In America’s Best Dance crew, a similar phenomenon was going on.

Yes, I know that Supreme Soul could be seen as a bunch of cocky bastards. And yes, I know that Super Cr3w doesn’t have a lot of choreography and they have a lot of tricks. But I sincerely thought that they would end up being the top two crews - that we would have a battle of the titans of dancing. The two best crews to me were Supreme Soul and Super Cr3w (having to type that 3 is really annoying). But noooooooooooooooooo….no one in America voted for them so yesterday they were in the bottom two. The judges were just as surprised as I was, so surprised that L’il Mama brought out her claws, stating, “When I see boogiebots on stage I don’t get excited.”

It was hard to see these guys on stage, who I’m sure believed that they were going to make it to the finale, standing there with tears in their eyes after performing waiting for the judge’s critique. Then when Supreme Soul was ousted, I actually felt bad for them (though I had predicted to Dave in the first episode of the season that they’d get ousted early because of their cockiness) as they tearfully watched their exit clip montage.

It should never have been these two guys in the bottom two.

Boogiebots needs to go!

…and yes, yes, I know. Rather than complaining about it, I should vote, but I hardly have time to shower, much less vote for these things. Maybe that’s what the problem is - all the people who would have been voting for these fantastic people are too busy!

Anyone else watch these? What did you think?

American Idol Tour Review

For my birthday, Dave got me tickets to the American Idol concert, which was really surprising since I was a fan of the show, but not a HUGE fan. I admit, however, that I’ve always been curious about the tour, and Dave managed to get some really great seats, so I was pretty excited to go.

First we had to drop off Ben, and then we headed to the Allstate Arena. I had thought that getting there 20 minutes before showtime was a good idea, but it’s been years since I’ve been to a concert, so I’d forgotten how crazy it would be. The line of cars started at the highway exit, and it took us ten minutes to just get into the parking lot. The parking lot was PACKED and there was a long line to just get into the building.

Our seats were pretty close - not on the main floor, but still pretty close. The mix of people was pretty interesting - the crowd seemed to be comprised of mostly white people, with two thirds of them over the age of 35, and the other third under the age of 15. Most were women, with about 20% of the audience being male - the males mostly under the age of 13. There were a lot of women who were all dressed up - heels, makeup, sparkly dresses, though most of the crowd was casually dressed like we were. I spied more than a dozen homemade American Idol shirts.

The most surprising thing about the show was the warm-up/introduction guy…it was Cory, the same guy who was our “clap leader” when we watched “Dancing with the Stars” last October. It was weird, it was like seeing an old, familiar face. He was playing to a couple hundred people before…now he’s in front of tens of thousands of people every night.

Then the show started, and let me tell you, when the crowd screamed, THEY SCREAMED. My ears hurt for hours afterwards. Here’s my rundown of each of the performers - each contestant had their own set, contrary to this group song lovefest that I thought it would be.

Chikezie:
“I Believe to My Soul” by Donny Hathaway
“Caught Up” by Usher
“So High” by John Legend
I was so happy to see my Easy Chickezie again. His big smile and easygoing style lit up the stage. He had some great stage presence, some nice moves, but to tell the truth, the performance was just all right. I guess there was a reason he was in 10th place.

Ramiele Malubay:
“I Want You Back” by The Jackson Five
“Love Will Lead You Back” by Taylor Dayne
“If I Never See Your Face Again” by Maroon 5 featuring Rihanna
Oh, how I wanted Ramiele to do well! The little lady with the big voice started off with a Jackson five standard which was cute, but not challenging or impressive. There were also some pretty cheesey dance moves that were incorporated. Her second song, however, showed us why she was in the competition. If she sang a song on the show half as well as she sang “Love Will Lead You Back” she would have been in the top 5. It was really impressive. Her last song was pretty forgettable, which reminded us what kicked her off the show - poor song choice.

Michael Johns:
“We Will Rock You”/”We Are the Champions” by Queen
“It’s All Wrong But It’s All Right” by Dolly Parton
“Dream On” by Aerosmith
As soon as Michael Johns’ face was brought up on the jumbotron the screams started and were deafening (though, at the time, I had no idea the level of ear piercing-ness they would reach later). He started out with the Queen medley he sang in the show, which I liked, but Dave was unimpressed. The second song was enjoyable, but nothing special. His best was probably “Dream On”, which really got the crowd cheering. He’s really great and comfortable on stage, though not as good looking as I remember him being. Before he sang Dream On he had brought out a Cubs flag and dedicated the song to them, pointing out that his dream was for them to someday win the World Series. Way to play to the crowd, Johns!

Kristy Lee Cook:
“Squeezin’ the Love Outta You” by Carolyn Dawn Johnson
“God Bless the USA” by Lee Greenwood
“Cowgirls” by Kerry Harvick
She’s a gorgeous gal, and wore an outfit that showed off her slim figure, but her songs were just ‘eh’. She showed a lot of sass and personality, but I could hardly understand what she was saying. I give her a C+.

Carly Smithson:
“Bring Me to Life” by Evanescence
“Crazy on You” by Heart
“I Drove All Night” by Cyndi Lauper
Carly had a pretty good set that showed off her strong voice. She drove all the Irish concertgoers (it sounded like there were a lot there) crazy by talking about how she’s been here for the St. Patrick’s day parade and how she loves how we turn the river green. The girl knew how to work the stage, and her last song was definitely her best.

Brooke White:
“Let It Be” by The Beatles
“1234″ by Feist
“Yellow” by Coldplay
Brook started off by rising from beneath the stage playing her piano to “Let it Be”, which she sang during the competition. Her voice sounded beautiful, and she looked amazing. She then switched to a guitar and led the crowd in what she called a silly, fun song, Feist’s “1, 2, 3, 4″. Right before singing, she urged the crowd to snap, proclaiming, “Snap is the new clap!” Dave mentioned that she reminded him of a grade school music teacher. She topped off her set with one of my favorite Coldplay songs. Brooke blew away the rest of the performers with her excellent song choices. People may not have been standing up screaming, but we all had a snappin’ good time.

Group medley, featuring the bottom 6:
“Pride In the Name of Love” by U2
Before going to the concert, I thought all of the performances at the concert would be like this - all the Idols singing on stage together. I liked it, the harmonies were pretty, and they all did a great job. I think I would have liked to see more group collaborations, but it was also nice to see each performer express their individuality.

Jason Castro:
“Over the Rainbow” (the Israel Kamakawiwo’ole version)
“Crazy” by Gnarls Barkley
“Daydream” by The Lovin’ Spoonful
Next to Brooke, I think Jason had the strongest set. When he was announced the screams were even louder than Michael Johns…then Jason began with the mellow, pretty “Over the Rainbow” song. Which was a little weird - the high pitched screams followed by such a somber song. Then came why I consider the highlight of the night - “Crazy”. I had heard that Jason did an acoustic version of the song for this AI audition, but it was never aired because they couldn’t obtain the rights to use the song on television. So when I heard him start singing the song I was pretty excited, and it became obvious why Jason was chosen to do American Idol - this song kicked ass (this rendition was previously done by Ray Lamontagne). It kicked ass so much that I gotta link to someone who filmed it:

He then finished up with Daydream, the same one he did during American Idol. I loved him then, and I love him now. Definitely my #2 for the night!

Syesha Mercado:
“Umbrella” by Rihanna
“If I Ain’t Got You” by Alicia Keys
“Listen” by Beyonce
I was excited to see what Syesha had in store for us. She came up at the top of the stage and looked incredible in this little gold dress. Unfortunately, she had mic problems and we couldn’t hear her sing. She kept on going, going through all the motions as the crowd was starting to get restless. She switched mics, and it still didn’t work - a handful of people started to boo. Finally, her mic worked, and she finished off the end of “Umbrella”, which, I’m sure if we heard the whole thing, would have been incredible. She stayed cool throughout the whole fiasco, apologizing to the audience, blaming herself for accidentally picking up Chickezie’s mic. She went into her Alicia Keys song, but the real treat was “Listen”. For all the other performers before her, the audience would stand up and applaud when they started singing, but end up sitting down after a bit. During “Listen”, Syesha’s amazing vocal stylings brought the crowd to its feet. She was telling us and the rest of the world that it wasn’t a fluke that she was in the top three - she deserved to be there.

David Archuleta:
“Angels” by Robbie Williams
“Apologize” by OneRepublic
“Stand by Me”/”Beautiful Girls” by Ben E. King/Sean Kingston
“When You Say You Love Me” by Josh Groban
As soon as Syesha announced the coming of the guy who became her “little brother”, the crowd was going apeshit. If heads could have exploded as little Eddie Munster rose from the stage playing piano, they would have. I swear I blew an eardrum with all that sound! He started out with “Angels”, which is one of my favorite songs ever, and he did it well. As he sang “Apologize”, I noticed that his stage presence was a lot better. He was more confident on stage and learned how to work the audience. I was doubtful that he could have a shelf life outside of AI, but I could see that this kid is learning the tricks. By the time he got to “Stand by Me” the screams began again, especially when he brought in the Sean Kingston “Beautiful Girls”. Man, as soon as he started singing that the girls screamed as if they were thinking to themselves, “ME!!! HE’S SINGING TO ME! I AM YOUR BEAUTIFUL GIRL, DAVID!!!” Little Archie would have gotten higher marks from me, but his fourth number was a sleeper.

David Cook:
“Hello” by Lionel Richie
“The Time of My Life” (the crappy songwriting contest winner)
“I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith
“My Hero” by Foo Fighters
“Billie Jean” (the Chris Cornell version of Michael Jackson song)
Ahh, the winner!!! Although as a whole, the cheers for David C (who had a little too much eyeliner on) were louder than Archie, they weren’t as high pitched. Which lead me to believe that his fan base is probably out of puberty (maybe a few decades out of puberty). He started off with a slow paced “Hello”, and moved on to the not-so-exciting “Time of My Life”. David knew how to make the crowd scream - by taking out his own videocamera, turning on the houselights, and scanning the whole crowd. Out of the rest of his songs, I’d have to say he did the best on “My Hero” because it suited his voice the best. I was too distracted during “Billie Jean” because I was listening to the words of the song and was thinking to myself, “Damn, if I knew 20 years ago about the Michael Jackson I know now, I doubt I would have liked the song as much.” He did a fine job - I could see him going far with his career, though I wonder if he could be as popular as that bald AI guy, uh, whats-his-name. The Vin Diesel look-a-like.

Group encore:
“Don’t Stop the Music” by Rihanna
I enjoyed this group performance, especially since it was a song they did during American Idol. All the performers came out and sang portions of the song. What I found hilarious was Michael Johns’ dancing. He’s one of those guys who knows he’s not a great dancer, but dances anyway to ham it up. He was jamming with Ramielle and Carly, and totally looked like a frog in a blender.

I wish I brought my camera - on my ticket it had said that cameras weren’t allowed, but EVERYONE had cameras there. When the lights were out, aside from the occasional glowlight all you could see were the LCD’s of people’s cameras and camera phones. I don’t think it would have mattered if I did have a camera, because there was this massively tall man in the row in front of me. Some part of his body would have inevitably been in all my pictures. This guy was tall. Like Hagrid tall. But if you’d like to see some awesome pictures from someone who had a good camera and awesome seats, click on Kaidee’s photostream.

All in all, it was a really fun night. I laughed a lot, more because of the reactions of the crowd than at the singers. It was a lot better than I thought it would be - you could already see that these singers were really learning how to be performers. I’m really tempted now to go and see the “Dancing with the Stars” tour or “So You Think You Could Dance”.

45 Years Never Looked So Good

I caught some bits and pieces of the MTV movie awards yesterday, and I’m watching recording of it right now, so I’ll have some more thoughts on it later, but one thing I’m happy that I didn’t miss was JOHNNY DEPP’S AWESOMENESS. Man! He looked incredible. He’s been bearded and scruffy for so long I didn’t realize that under that “21 Jump Street” was waiting to come out. He sauntered on stage like it was nothing, but the crowd was going ballistic. Wow. All I can say is WOW.

Of course, this post would mean nothing without pictures, so…

Johnny Depp MTV Movie Awards

Johnny Depp MTV Movie Awards

Johnny Depp MTV Movie Awards

and here’s video:

Girls Rule!

Sorry if this is a spoiler, but a woman finally wins Dancing with the Stars after a 5 year drought. And truthfully, I don’t think Kelly Monaco deserved to win the first one.

Anyway, I think we all knew the Kristy Yamaguchi would be the best celeb dancer on the show, but the question was, would America love her enough to keep her on? Sabrina Bryan was a favorite last year and was ousted weeks before the finals, so Kristy’s win wasn’t a given. But she persevered, and she got the coveted ugly mirror ball trophy, and it was well deserved. Her jive was awesomeness, probably the best dance I’ve ever seen on DWTS (with Apolo Ohno’s paso doble coming close).

This has been a great year for DWTS. First, Marlee Matlin was inspiring. When she got out there and did her first dance, I got all misty. It really gives some perspective when I think there are things I can’t do. Something I WON’T do, though, is inject crap into my lips. Priscilla Presley used to be a gorgeous woman, I have no idea why she felt the need to change herself. But even with her unrecognizable face, she still wowed us with her moves (the splits!) and elegance. Then, all of the hospital stays - Derek Hough, then Christian’s elbow. Men dancing the tango together for the encore performance. Adam Corola, who usually made irritatingly funny comments, left the show with the sweetest one - “I may have lost 20 lbs, but I gained 105 lbs of angel”. The show-mance between Shannon and Derek was intriguing, though even more intriguing was the bro-mance between Jason and Christian. Also, I was surprised that Jason was so good. Sure, there were times that he was a little awkward and he’d watch Edyta too much for cues, but you can’t deny his smooth elegance. Even if Kristi didn’t win, I would have been happy that Edyta, “the hottest body on the show” according to Dave, would have finally ended her 5 year losing streak.

But Kristi won, and I’m happy with that!

Kristy Yamaguchi

I am Intrigued….

It was delicious. Dave took one, I took the other. After one bite we wanted to grab the other’s so we could eat the whole thing. Yumminess! Twix, you done good.

I Wanna Be a Rock Star

Dave’s brother Justin came over a couple weeks ago with Rock Band (which belonged to my cousin). We hooked it up and Ben immediately took the drumsticks and started jamming on the drums - even though he’s never played the drums before. That game is totally addicting - we kept Ben up pretty late playing it. I stayed on the easy level on drums (I tried medium and failed miserably - my feet just have a mind of their own) Dave was on bass (and later guitar) and Justin was on guitar. Later on my cousin Marlon came over and he jammed out on guitar (on the hard level!), Justin did the drums and I wimped out playing bass. Ben added a level of difficulty be throwing goldfish crackers on me, whispering “ice cream!” in Marlon’s ear and banging on the drums with Justin. I tried out singing, and although I was awesome at it, it was obvious that Rock Band doesn’t really care if you actually sound good - just that you’re hitting the right notes.

The game is awesome - it’s definitely a team effort, and the songs available are pretty awesome. I’ve been debating on getting a gaming system (even though we all know I have no time to play). Maybe when the Wiis are more available I’ll buy one and get Rock Band for it. If anything, I can always invite Rock Band owners to come over and rock out with us!