Sunday, October 18, 2009

Moyer Gets Wet in Armor, Fights Vikings.

How do you know you're a diehard Truebie? Well, you're so intrigued by one fan's comment at Comic-Con that you reserve your very own copy of Prince Valiant at the library.

But there's a problem -- No, it isn't that you've checked out a movie based solely on the fact that Stephen Moyer appears in it (especially when you're an Eric girl), but that you misread the text online and reserved a VHS tape.

That's right, I'm real high-tech and no longer have a VCR. So I have to call Rachel and subject her to the cheeseball fangirl fest. And what does she do? Explains the plot to me when I'm too busy laughing and provides Moosetracks ice cream for me to enjoy.

It's 1997 and pre-True Blood for Stephen Moyer, and pre-Grey's Anatomy for Katherine Heigl. (This movie also features
Hellboy and Professor Flitwick from the Harry Potter films.)

King Arthur has a daughter, Princess Ilene (Heigl), who wants to be a knight. Valiant (Moyer) impersonates his squire in a jousting match because he isn't able to fight. Arthur enlists him to take Ilene to a safe place because they are being invaded by the Scottish (but it's really the Vikings impersonating the Scottish).

Meanwhile, the villans have dug up Merlin and got his spellbook so they could get Excalibur. They remind me the ones in Power Rangers. Yes, I was a kid in the '90s. And those guys really like the eyeliner. But it's shown that only Valiant can release it. (He's a squire because he was orphaned and raised in a monks, who named him Valiant.)

The one requirement for Valiant's quest? That he get wet while wearing armor and possibly have a swordfight. (4:08)

Much better hair like this. Not that "ridiculous mullet." - Stephen's words, not mine.

Pretty much every scene includes Valiant with wet hair and armor. You'd be surprised how many situations call for that.

Then, epic battles ensue. Vikings are barbaric and wear funny hats.

Epic battles, freeballing it to victory. (Sorry Belles, we're not talking Moyer.)

Rachel rewound the part at :25 about three times. Let me just say, this really made me wish that Alex was Thagnar, there. We all know he's Scandinavian, Godammit. They "love to be naked."

But there's a anti-Viking slant going on. Valiant and his people are rightfully pissed at the Vikings. They stole his home and tried to harem-up his woman. UNTIL we find out that Valiant is a Viking, but the good kind.(About 1:13)

You got a thing for proposing to blonde girls, Moyer?

Sound familiar? He's a Viking, but a good one. He hates his own people because they've wronged him and stolen away his family and his rightful life! Some big Viking is trying to sex up his lady and take his spot, so he fights and uses armored alligator heads as lifts!

There you have it. Stephen Moyer is a secret Viking, this movie would have been pop culture gold if Alexander Skarsgard was cast as the evil Viking and all us Truebies could have died happy.

Instead, we'll just have to watch this sometimes live action, sometimes animated, sometimes ridiculous movie of awesome much in the style of Mystery Science Theater 3000 with a friend. Just make sure it's a friend who will not only accurately finish the sentences of the movie she's never seen, but offer to be on a screenwriting team for awesome medieval '90s movies with you.

This movie is a must for Moyer fans, for sure. But fans of alligators in armor and PG-13 innuendo would like it too. Or at least have a good laugh. Stephen did. (4:15)

Thank you, Random Fangirl. You made my Saturday.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I'm Sorry, Blog. I'm Cheating with Tumblr.

Yes, I am a horrible person.

I have been away too long. I have one of those dead blogs now. But I have a good reason. It's called Tumblr.

Tumblr is the best time waster ever. It's a visual blog, which means there are many many reasons to stay and stare at certain handsome Swedes.

Reasons I Haven't Been Posting Here Lately:

1. School Hates Me Sometimes.

It's a lame excuse, but I'll use it. There is life beyond the internet. Possibly. That's my planner. That's a full week.

2. Tumblr has things like this.

Do you know how much picspam there is? A lot. And it's delivered straight to my computer screen with very little effort on my part. Type. Click. Awesome.

3. And posts like this.

Which lead to more time wasting opportunities. Like watching my Generation Kill DVDs with commentary...

So, I apologize, Blog.

It's not you, it's me. We can still be friends.

Over the past couple of weeks, I've started about a dozen posts. I'm going to post them retroactively. (Including one for the True Blood finale, I am most embarrassed about that.)

I'll be posting here at least once a week, but I'll be on Tumblr, in the meantime.

Now that cheating metaphor just got a little strange.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Skarsgard Fix -- I'm Just a Craving Skars Girl, Baby. Watch Generation Kill, Baby with Me.

I've horribly neglected my blog this week, but I promise to deliver on the True Blood finale and everything else later. Right now, I am going through horrible Alexander Skarsgard withdrawl, for no apparent reason.

So here we are.

My birthday's next month, and I really cannot wait to have another video of the Skars to pop in any time I want.

What's my random craving today? Some Iceman. And what's going to cure that? Some singing clips from Generation Kill and other lovely, lovely GK-themed clips. Yes.

You love to see it. These guys are so heart-breakingly cute.

The only downside? You have "Teenage Dirtbag" stuck in your head all day. It's worth it.

And ASkars is miles away from Jason Biggs, sorry to say. I like his version better. Mainly because I get to look at him. You know how that goes.

I bring you clips from Generation Kill:

Singing. It's awesome when ASkars does it.


Lots of nice Iceman, but skip to 3:50 for the drool. Sigh.

I need to get this DVD. Like now.

I'm just craving Skars girl, ba-by. This might help until sum-mer, ba-by with me! Ooooooooo.

But I still want more Eric next season.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Vickie Howell Says Repost, You Repost.

Vickie Howell will host a Twitter Party tonight. The details can be found below. Here's the same post on Vickie's Blog and one here which details that for every blog that reposts this information, Lands' End will donate yarn to Warming Families. So join in. It's about yarn and knitting awesomeness!

Commence plug:

Join Me & Lands' End for a Twitter Party!!

Join Me & Lands’ End for a Twitter Party to celebrate the kick-off the FeelGood Campaign! The party will feature more than 20 fun giveaways ranging from the FeelGood sweater and my books to Lands’ End gift cards and FeelGood yarn. Here are the details:

Lands’ End FeelGood Twitter Party

Date: Wednesday, September 16th

Time: 7:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. CST

Location: #landsend

What IS a Twitter Party?
A Twitter Party is where a group of people can discuss or “Tweet” about a specific topic in their own little chat room. To participate in the discussion you’ll need to sign up for a free Twitter account (instructions are listed below).

Why Attend?
Twitter parties are a great way to connect with other people while chatting about a specific topic. Lands’ End will be hosting a two-hour Twitter Party to kick-off the FeelGood campaign – complete with fun and giveaways.

Twitter Party Hosts
Twitter Party Hosts oversee the event, answer questions, and keep the flow of the party going.

How To Participate

1. Twitter Account - Go to to sign up for a free Twitter account.

2. Find and Follow any or all of Lands’ End Hosts:

During the party if you want to address one of the hosts directly, be sure to use their entire Twitter handle (ie @VickieHowell).

Hashtag – The Twitter world calls a pound sign (#) a hashtag. A hashtag is a code used to mark a specific topic. The Lands’ End FeelGood Twitter Party is marked and happening at #landsend. You can search for #landsend to participate in the party and see the party tweets.

Set Up TweetGrid - On the day of the party, use or another Twitter application such as TweetDeck to follow all of the “tweets” marked #landsend and participate in the party.

On TweetGrid - You can comment, reply and read all at once in TweetGrid, and it even puts the hashtag in your comment for you.

Click here for a TweetGrid tutorial list. The Twitter Party Tutorial should be #8.

Fast Followers – Something to note, Twitter parties are fun and fast!

Hope to see you there!


Monday, September 14, 2009

Record Cozy Tumblr -- Enjoy The Diet RC.

So, I've been neglecting the blog a little lately. I feel ashamed. BUT... I will have a True Blood reaction up tomorrow, and a playlist pretty soon.

But -- News. Which may not be news if you know it already, but Record Cozy is now up and running on Tumblr as Record Cozy Lite.

What does that mean? Random, but lovely things that are related to regular ole Record Cozy, but not post-worthy.

I don't know if I can promise the suggestive fun times of that there Diet soda, but I can promise way more ASkars than you can handle and a few of my best-ever things: Conversations, Tweets and Top Searches which lead people to Record Cozy (only the amusing and bizarre).

Wasn't it magical the way they all just fell down like that? Dirty mannequins!

I'm especially interested in getting a few more knitting peeps to follow. So, let me know if you love yarn! Woot!

Please enjoy Record Cozy Lite, and we'll be up and running when I get something accomplished academically and can tear myself away from Alexander Skarsgard pictures and Miniature Tiger songs on repeat.

Someone help me. That combination is effing lethal.

Sooooo pretty...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Mom, Porpoises Were Bound to Come Up.

This post is probably one of the most random I've ever had cause to write. It's also a few weeks off, but hey, college.

I don't know if you could call it a college road trip tale, but it was a trip to college. That's 5 and a half hours of quality car time with my mother.

Let me tell you a story.

It's a trip, so things are going to go wrong. Maybe in this case, so wrong it's right. About half an hour out and we discover that the iPod speakers aren't charged. Now, I was armed with my iPod and headphones anyway because I don't particularly enjoy my mom's music, which tends towards the extra folky, feminist-type style. But I'd choose that over what we got any day.

We're on the way to Pittsburgh and subject to hours of good ole pan-and-scan radio. That's through Western Pennsylvania.

What does that mean? Some weird shit. And a hell of a lot of country.

I think I've had some of the weirdest conversations of my life in those few hours. It's funny how a certain song or sight sparks a conversation. And also leads you to strange and comical places.

Conversation #1: Alison Sees a Boy with a Dog By the Side of the Highway

A: "There's a boy playing with a dog."

M: "How Americana."

A: "It was a German Shepard."

Conversation #2: Alison Stops Scan on a Kings of Leon Song

A: "Oh, wait. This is Kings of Leon. This station might be good. It might not, though, they've recently crossed over."

Radio: That was Kings of Leon, and now, Lady Gaga!

M: *Eyes*

A: "Okay, yeah."

Conversation #3: 70's Porn Music

M: "God. That sounded like something from a 70's porn movie."

Alison hears "Porpoise" in there somewhere. Pictures Porpoise with 70's pornstache.

M: "That was pretty bad."

Alison tries not to giggle.


A: "You don't even understand why that was so funny. I need help."

I so do.

There's something about my brain that just has to put things together. But I guess it runs in the family.

Maybe that's just one more lesson learned. The other? The hits of great bands are not always the best of the best. But you knew that. I think I heard the Kings of Leon's "Use Somebody" about 400 times on that trip. Don't they know that "Closer" is loads better? It's about vampires. Even "Sex On Fire" lends itself for Eric Northman mistaken identity. (Racerback.) I've done this at least twice.

Pan-and-scan is good for one thing, and one thing only: Amusement at the absurdity.

In the same block I heard a radio ad for an event that was described as fun for everyone, and I quote, "country to rock to clowns and magicians." Those clowns know how to party.

But the best radio find had to be this gem from the 80's. Yeah. That's right. "Sunglasses at Night." Please watch this video. It's even better than the song itself. The earrings. The lady cop uniforms. The singing into pay phones. Random thy name is Corey Hart.

The country, the swinging 80's hits and synthesizers, it was a little excruciating. But at least I have a story to tell.

One thing's for sure, I didn't expect the "Porpoise" conversation to come so soon. I should have known. A 6-hour drive. I guess porpoises were bound to come up.

Friday, September 11, 2009

An Appreciation for Manly Tank Tops. Yes.

There is something that I'd never thought I'd admit in public: I have an appreciation for boys in manly tank tops.

What I'm saying is that I've really enjoyed watching Eric Northman this season of True Blood, and it's not just because Alexander Skarsgard is the sweetest guy ever. (Although he is.)

Seriously, how could you say no to that? Right about 2:12. There are no words.

While Eric Northman was positively mouthwatering at times, I can't say he was the first cute guy to catch my eye wearing one of those gun-showing shirts.

You're probably going to laugh when read this, but Cillian Murphy held his own in 2007's Sunshine. Why are you going to laugh? Both guys are very attractive, but in different ways. The Skarsgard is let's say, just a little more gunny, than Mr. Murphy. (Nice tank shot at :16.)

I saw Sunshine in theatres when it first came out, at a place which shows what we like to call in our family, "artsy movies." And I loved it.

I don't love many movies. I hate the movie theater, which probably stems from my dislike of crowds and sticky things. But this one, I came out saying wow. Some might say I'm picky, but I'm nothing if not loyal to my favorites.

Not only is the movie great, but I can remember being distracted by the wardrobe choices a little. That is an attractive guy. I can't say I wasn't entertained.

This is actually the first time I've watched it since that first time because, let me tell you, it's sad. This video pretty much sums up the way you feel at the end of the film:

That's pretty sad. Counting Crows sad. But the rest of the movie I'd liken to Alien. Especially the dinner scene at the beginning of the film. You're practically like, "Oh shit. Someone's having an alien baby before this scene is over." Okay, maybe not. The idea's pretty similar.

I love that Sci-Fi stuff. My one complaint about Alien? It brought out the crazy cat lady in me. I spent a lot of time near the end worried about the cat. Let all the people die, but I worried about the cat. Oh, CCL me. There's a reason it's a classic. I can't say that the volumes after Aliens lived up to that, even with Joss Whedon's involvement (Alien Resurrection), which usually turns things to gold.

It is a really great movie, but pre-tank Northman, I was pretty interested in seeing a little Cillian gunniness. I still am. Although with more of a Northman Junior spin.

You have to appreciate the manly tank top. Not everyone can pull that off. Maybe that's not the best word choice when I'm putting all this man hotness in front of you. Ahem. The only time Eric pulls off (his own?) racerback is when he's crying.

But we all know he's a GQ MoFo (And so is Alex...) who cries a little, than has a bite of Sookie Stackhouse. You can forgive the tears for that. And the countless manly tank tops.

Oh manly tank tops, the winter will be bleak without you.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Skarsgard Fix -- Best Thing To Say Ever.

I think I pretty much have the best friends ever. It's not huge gestures or even insane amount of time spent together that makes them great. I'd have to say it's the times when they say just the right thing to make me laugh spontaneously at one random word or phrase or image. Or to understand the obscure references I sometimes like to use. That's good enough for me.

I'll tell you how this little tech conversation went earlier today on Facebook:

(Status Update)
Rachel is *not* listening to the avett brothers on repeat and looking at pictures of ireland. she's clearly doing something to enrich her mind. or her GPA. yeahhh.

(Alison Comments)
Yet again, sub Sufjan Stevens and Miniature Tigers and Alexander Skarsgard... I mean... look at this essay I'm writing!

(Rachel Comments)
i love that i know exactly which blanks those go in. ha. someone is going to come by and find you staring motionless at your walls, only to realize you aren't in fact dead, just in a skars trance.

That's the end of the exchange. Just that little bit of dialogue. And it made my night.

Oh and seriously, can you blame me for Skars trances when you put all of this in front of my face? Sigh. (Yeah, I chose that one. I like the way he scrunches his nose up. Cute. Bloody eyes. Less cute.)

Finer Details:

1. Rachel knows that I recently put the TV Guide Scene Stealer article with The Skarsgard on my wall.

2. This is the first time that she's called him Skars. It's obviously not the first time she's heard it. Not from me. Psh. Yes from me.

3. She's not a True Blood girl. Although I immediately offered my DVDs (spread the wealth, right?), she declined because, and I quote, "I don't need to get addicted to another show."

Probably true. I spend a lot of time thinking about Viking vampires. I'm not going to tell you what I'm thinking about. Let's leave that a really transparent mystery.

There might be something to this staring at the wall thing. Or at my laptop. Or at the television.

Maybe I should wear a sign around my neck that says, "Not dead, just looking at Alexander Skarsgard."

Rachel and Nyssa: Thank you for understanding me enough to make me laugh at one-sentence typed responses. You always find the best things to say. Ever. I spend a lot of time giggling. It's your fault.

Well, you and Alexander Skarsgard.

UPDATE (9/11/09 at 11:23 a.m.):

I just had a thought about The Skars. Shocker. I can recall a conversation with Nyssa which she started with, "I was thinking about Eric in the shower this morning." (A reflection on the Eric-Sookie relationship in the books, completely logistical.) to which I replied, "You were thinking about Eric in the shower? You slut!"

But really, that was the tea cozy calling the amigurumi cute and superfluous. I was thinking about this post, and indirectly, Alexander Skarsgard, earlier. And I realize that I can't get through the day without calling myself a "Skars Perv." Because really, who wouldn't be?

I think we need another Skars Fix, because I can't be the only one pining in the morning. That's me. Cute and Superfluous. Just don't tell anyone.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Washington Irving -- Not Like Wishbone.

I'll tell you one thing, folks. Wishbone lied to me. Every piece of literature seems pretty incredible when it's re-enacted by a talking dog. Well, he sort of talks. But really, what's the story, Wishbone? It's that Alison can not finish "Rip Van Winkle" to save her life. Instead, I'm pretty sure that watching catchy theme songs with dogs in costumes is a favorable alternative:

The other point of this story? "Rip Van Winkle" yields kid-friendly edutainment. I found this rendition of "Bat Van Winkle" by alexbrandonclark as well. You can tell why: I was intrigued by the music choices. That's Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, kids! And I have a soft spot for bats. Ever since I read Silverwing.

I was such a literary kid, and what am I now? I'm a college girl, a Skars-craving, selective vampire fiction reader and Eric-watcher who can't get through a short story assignment. It's times like these when I realize why people always said they hated English classes in high school. Well, in college, not much has changed.

What's a girl to do when they don't present classic literature with the easy-to-digest spunky terriers and cartoons?

Um... I guess, type up yet another nostalgic blog post about the bygone pop culture days of my youth? Spend a little time searching YouTube videos and discovering that Jensen Ackles was on Wishbone (4:40)?

That sounds about right.

UPDATE: Finished that... thing. It got better after he got all old. I must say that the bats helped me keep the story straight in my head. I can't say I recall so many trippy bats with pirate eye patches, though. There was just the one...

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

True Blood Finale Promo -- Depeche Mode!

I wasn't going to post this, despite Eric's awesomeness, but I feel I have to because of my awesomeness. I've got the music senses of a bloodhound sometimes. I mean, your ears prick up and you're like, "Hey! That's Depeche Mode." Which is followed by, "I effing love True Blood."

I give you the finale teaser, which is basically many of the previous promos mashed into one. Except Eric seems to be dining a little less politely. He didn't even check to see if he had blood on his face!

Sadly, you don't learn anything new, except that someone on the True Blood staff has excellent taste in music. But you knew that already.

That's "Corrupt" by Depeche Mode, btw, from their latest album, Sounds of the Universe.

Brave Little Toaster -- Cheerful Appliance!

I have a few ideas lined up for today and the near future, but I am too lazy. So I bring you probably the first of many entirely random, quick and dirty blog posts. I'm sorry this looks kind of strangely wrong next to the heading for my Wool 100% post. I think The Brave Little Toaster's virtue can remain unsullied, even in close proximity to that 3-letter word.

I feel like I've made a lot of Brave Little Toaster references lately. I can think of at least 3 in the past few days, the most recent in this tweet from only a little while ago.

I feel like there aren't enough Brave Little Toaster references floating around. This was another one of my favorite films, The Brave Little Toaster.

What can I say, I'm all about nostalgia. Yet another movie that made my childhood awesome. And made me appreciate the more cheerful of the kitchen appliances.

This is kind of scary as hell. I remember the fear. That air conditioner makes me happy that my dorm is low-tech. The Brave Little Toaster is optimistic and full of hope while other appliances are conspiracy theorists.

There are no Brave Little Toaster dancing to "Tutti Frutti" videos that I've found. I think the search will have to continue. Because that dance is the basis for many a Brave Little Toaster reference. It makes me sad not to share it with the world.

Everyone knows that the dance of The Brave Little Toaster makes people spontaneously happy. Just because. He's a toaster. Who dances.

UPDATE: Just for funsies, thanks to Nystacular for this one. Random, yet awesome. Who are you? I'm sure you've been dying to find out.

It won't let me see the result, but I'm sure I'm a toaster. I enjoy bread too much to be anything else. Although, I'll get offended if you call me "Slots."

Monday, September 7, 2009

Wool 100% -- How is Knitting Like Sex?

I wanted to write up a post on Wool 100% when I saw it two weeks ago, but I got a little busy. It's an interesting film, albeit sort of loud and makes you paranoid that your neighbors think you're having a rave in your room or something. Although Vogue Knitting wrote a small piece about it last winter (which I discovered later), I don't think many knitters know about it. Let me tell you a story.

Nystacular and I were getting pretty crazy and going anti-hermit for the day. Our big outing? Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in IMAX 3-D. Big let down, btw. And not in the awesome Radiohead way. That's the 3-D, not the movie. I love Harry Potter. Awesome knitwear.

So we're waiting for the movie to start, our giant yellow plastic glasses sitting on our laps amidst a crowd of families and nerdy college kids. Nyssa turns to me and says, "Let me tell you about this movie I saw." We had discussed the film earlier, at one of our nerdy hermit days (Scrabble, Food Network and Cartoons. Very often insanely short games of 2-person Clue or Gobblet, which I always lose.)

As a knitter, I'm intrigued at any movie about wool (obviously). Nyssa tells me that it's really weird. These two old ladies collect junk and they have cute hairstyles. They take care of their finds and clean them up. There's a garbage man--but cute who these sisters both like when they're young. They like him, so they're going to knit him a baby.

Why are they going to knit him a baby? Because when they were young, their mother was pregnant, and as she finished a piece of knitting (which laid across her stomach), her belly grew. So knitting=babies. (She didn't tell me this part.)

Now, don't think I'm giving away too much, because I didn't even get the ending until I saw the preview again just now. If you don't get it, just shoot me an email at and I will explain it to you, if you'd like.

So this morning, @knitthecity reposted a link to something about "How is knitting like sex?" Of course, it was a humorous answer. But my mind went straight to Wool 100%, "Because they both make babies?"


I think if you're a knitter, you'll identify with Knit-Again, a girl who appears after the women find a bunch of red wool. Her mantra is, "Damn it! I have to knit it again!" That comes out like a siren, and the old ladies cover their ears as Knit-Again rips off her asymmetrically knit red dress and starts frogging.

She's always knitting, and she gets pretty pissed when it's not right. I know how that goes.

It is weird as hell, but I liked it. If you're like me, you'll be jealous of Knit-Again's awesome yarn the entire movie. Go see it. If your library's as cool as mine, they might have it in stock.

There's a lesson, a moral, if you will, and I will close with Nystacular and my Twitter conversation the next day on the subject:

Just watched Wool 100%. Knit-Again messed up my knitting rhythm. And I think she also scared my neighbors. #knitting #movies

Nystacular@recordcozy did it leave you confused? because it left me wondering. I grew to love knit again, but then I hated her in the end

recordcozy@Nystacular Why'd you hate Knit-Again? Because she kept stabbing things with knitting needles or because she would spontaneously get naked?

Nystacular@recordcozy because knit again tried to kill the ladys I think? but really, can you ever be sure with anything in that movie

Nystacular@recordcozy or maybe she was just a physical metaphor for spring cleaning

recordcozy@Nystacular She didn't try to kill them. Just liberating them from the evil clutter demons! So I guess it is about spring cleaning. & fire.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Playlists -- Sufjan Stevens. He Knits.

I really kind of love Sufjan Stevens. I have yet to hear a song of his I didn't like. I haven't been listening to him long, but it's been quality time together. I think his insane awesomeness is multiplied by the fact that he's a knitter. There aren't many men who own up to being purl friendly. He also teaches knitting to the blind. You can probably guess how I feel about men with a charitable nature.

The only other knitting dude I can think of is that guy who knits with drum sticks -- Oh, wait. He drums with knitting needles. Much less impressive. (Not really. I just like to kid.) Him, and Michael Kors. There's others, but I like to pretend that it's only Sufjan Stevens and me. Oh, Sufjan Stevens and your yarn.

Let's admit it. He's super cute. (Evidence: Choose one. Preferably with the ties and tidy-messy hair.)

But that's not why this is a Sufjan Stevens-only playlist day! It's because Alison is lazy! Who said that? No, it is because someone should point it out when people are awesome. Maybe not in those exact words, but everyone loves a little recognition. Even occasionally bed-headed musician boy knitters. Especially.

The Lineup:

1. "Demetrius" by Sufjan Stevens (

2. "A Sun Came" by Sufjan Stevens (Sound Only -- The end of this one is like someone's headache. It makes me laugh.)

3. "The Oracle Said Wander" by Sufjan Stevens ( -- The only video for this doesn't have the whole song. It doesn't make much sense to me. Now I've probably enticed you to watch it anyway. I hope you like teeth.)

4. "A Winner Needs a Wand" by Sufjan Stevens (Fanvid for Sufjan Stevens and No Country for Old Men)

5. "Dumb I Sound" by Sufjan Stevens (Sound Only)

Video. "Chicago" by Sufjan Stevens (Audio Only with very nice pictures! I think I did a live one of this before, but that's okay. You can never have enough.)

Video. "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" by Sufjan Stevens (Unofficial -- Dioramas Animals from Natural History Museums. No wonder I like it. The Natural History thing, not the dead animals thing.)

Video. "The Lord God Bird" by Sufjan Stevens (Unofficial -- Fields of flowers. Blond chick frolicking.)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

A & Me -- Alison, This is Your Life.

You ever just have a sudden weird reflective moment? Well, I just did. Let me tell you a little about my evening.

I'm in college, so there's bound to be assignments piling up. That, and laundry. I took care of both, reading several chapters about grammar while feeling delighted that I didn't have to sucker punch anyone for a dryer.

Then I came back to my room, had a little dinner, and worked on some reviews I have for this week for The Pitt News. I make a lot of connections to cartoon characters when I really think about things. One Colin Hay song sounded like something Chef would sing on South Park. I don't think I'll be printing that.

Break time and what do I do? Watch some Ghost Hunters and work on my Bella's Mittens!

The combination of activities in itself isn't exactly regular, but I think my own enjoyment in the activity is what scares me the most. What's interesting about these mittens is they're knit by the Magic Loop method, at least in part.

Magic Loop is something I've never tried before, and I am kicking myself for it. Double-pointed needles can be annoying and even if I'm extra careful, I still get slight laddering in stockinette stitch. Magic Loop makes it so much easier to knit in the round! It's a little tricky, but definitely not as cumbersome as 5 needles at once. I always have a problem with dropping the one loose needle in the couch cushions or the cat stealing one. Here, no muss, no fuss.

It's not much yet, but it's looking good.

So, how do I spend my evenings? Tucked in my room with my paranormal investigators, new and exciting knitting techniques and drowning out my neighbors with headphones and a loud and lovely dose of Good Shoes.

Simple? Yes. Boring? To anyone else, yes. But for me, it's the perfect time to reflect on the weirdness that is my taste in culture. And my life.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

"When the Sun" -- Cabled Seed Stitch Scarf

This is something I designed to match a hat ages ago, but decided to dust off the pattern to help my poor college kid wallet. So, THUS begins my Etsy adventure. For real this time.

The Stats:
The Pattern - My Own Design
Yarn - About 1.5 Skeins of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick in Lemongrass
Needles - Size 15 24" circs by Susan Bates (Knit flat, obviously.)
Source - Stitch Dictionary and Alison's Brain
Price - Free as Alison's Crazy Thoughts.

Songs*[rep] to end. - "When the Sun Grows on Your Tongue"
This scarf to me screams seventies, although I didn't actually plan it that way. It reminds me of this book of crazy knitted fashions too. So to accompany this little decade-inspired accessory, I chose my favorite psychedelic band. That would be Black Moth Super Rainbow (from Pittsburgh!). "When the Sun Grows on Your Tongue" comes from 2007's Dandelion Gum. I had originally considered "Iron Lemonade" since it's probably my favorite song from their new album, but the seventies flair just isn't as noticeable in that one. And if there's one thing this Lemongrass green marvel needs, it's more flair.

Cable Pattern:

Let's Get Cozy - Cabled Seed Stitch Scarf (CO 8/28/09, FO 8/31/09)

Ravelry Listing

Etsy Listing (Coming Soon)

This is just a simple pattern I whipped up when I wanted something to match a hat I had made. I really love winter accessory sets. If I make a scarf, I want a hat and gloves to go with it. If I have enough yarn, there's going to be a matching set. The purpose of this particular scarf was to sell it on Etsy. Since I'm on my own for spending money now, it became clear that I needed to get cracking on my designs to supplement my income. I also love super bulky yarn. I know that I can knit something fairly quickly and be pleased with the results.

You have no dreams, little yarn ball.

Everything has gone well with this design so far. My only complaint is that I got a skein of Wool-Ease Thick & Quick that wishes it was slub yarn. Now, I love slub yarn, but it's kind of cramping my style. Hear me now, Wool-Ease Thick & Quick: You are what you are. I have no patience of the dreams of skeins of yarn! Mwahahahaha! (Evil Overlord Voice. Yes, I am a yarn overlord.)

Look for the Etsy Listing soon. I'll have a space for the Etsy Merch on the sidebar when the time comes.

I heart yarn, but when it starts to think for itself, I start to get paranoid. Maybe it's a side effect of the psychedelic rock I chose for inspiration. Pretty Pattern + Yarn + Paranoia = Cabled Seed Stitch Scarf. I'll take it.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

What About Eric?! -- Still Sexy in a Dress.

Well, as always with True Blood we start off with the other end of the cliffhanger from last week. "Frenzy" started pretty much how I suspected, with Sophie Anne feeding from a human.

Sophie Anne was interesting. She's a lot more colorful than she was in the books. There, she was sort of demure and dressed too old for the age she looked. Although she did enjoy the company of women, there was no real mention of the virtual harem she had at her compound.

I found it interesting that she used the phrase, "That's random," one which even my parents don't use. I guess Sophie Anne's a "hip" vampire?

But what I found most curious was the absence of Andre. I actually said it in my head like this, "What happened to Andre? Where's Andre?" *Tim Gunn Voice*

But seriously folks, no. I really hope that they keep Andre in the show. There are some of the best scenes later in the novels that directly or indirectly relate to him. The main thing is, he's never supposed to leave the Queen's side. The same goes for the Berts, but they're not quite as important until later.

What we find out from Sophie Anne is that Maryann was human and can be killed in a certain way. In the novels, they don't kill Maryann, she leaves voluntarily. The only reason I can see for killing her off is they want any possible return of the Maenad to be crushed. Why is that? Boring? Who said that? Oh, yes. Me. And a million other fans of the show.

Meanwhile back in Bon Temps, Tara wants to rescue Eggs, like an idiot. But the main problem I have with this situation is what Tara says to Sookie. She says, "How many times have you put yourself in danger for the man you love?" Well, realistically, some, but not the big one. Not the one that she'll feel the worst about when the truth comes out. Not yet. I'm beginning to think that they have no intention of following one of the biggest plot points of the books. Every chance they get to paint Bill in a positive light, as a victim, they take it. And I can only say, "It didn't happen like that."

Sam reveals he's a shifter to Jason and Andy, an increasingly strange and entertaining pair, btw. I have to say, I really love the stupid Jason lines. The best one this episode: "This is Armageddon. This is a book. This is The Oral History of the Zombie War." That's a fictitious book about zombies. A parody. That was priceless. Also, "That's in The Bible or The Constitution." I really love dumb Jason.

And Lafayette's having sex dreams about Eric as well. Although he doesn't enjoy them nearly as much as Sookie. "Somebody needs to slap that bitch." "I already have." was nice. I like how Sookie shares blood bonding stories with Lafayette like she's sharing complaints about frequent runs in each other's stockings.

Can I just say something about Lafayette's flashback things? I know they are not supposed to be funny, but I can not stop laughing until I cry when I see one. Andy Bellefleur was super weird, but it was hilarious. I'll tell you why. Alexander Skarsgard is a crazy good actor, so it's not just him in a dress, it's him acting like Lettie Mae. And I kind of love it. And I won't feel bad for laughing when Laffy is cowering in the corner.

And I also completely thought Alex was joking when he said he wanted to wear a dress on the show at Comic-Con (clip here). The saddest part about that scene? He was still sexy. I still say that that man is unfair to the entire male population -- and, strange and sudden revelation -- to the man who tries on Sookie's Fangtasia dress. I'd expect not being able to pull that one off is especially heartbreaking. Alexander Skarsgard: He's too dreamy.

Jason using the term "lady dog" amused me. He would think about that. Oh, Jason. You perv. The idea of Sam laying eggs and eating them was kind of strange as well. I found myself yelling at the screen, "He's not a lady chicken, Jason!" Not that he heard me.

When Sookie tells Lafayette she's going to do something, I fully expected some more weird telepathic glowey magic stuff. No, it was just a statue.

I'm a fan of whenever someone suggests that they go see Eric. There are actual cheers over here. Sam takes advice from Coby and Lisa, obviously not thinking too clearly lately. Missed that one himself. At Fangtasia, we have the very awesome Closed sign, "Sorry We're Dead."

Tara breaks away, thanks to bitchy Lettie Mae, and gets black-eyed again. Shocker. And she also summoned Maryann with her fake demon. Lovely. Best thing about this scene? Maryann's angry gerbil noise!

Sookie and Lafayette are storming the castle, so to speak, and all I can think is, "Sookie, what is in your purse?" You didn't drive, you're not going to tip the maenad for the lovely meat tree or the house sitting, why? At least use a messenger bag when you're battling to the death. Hands free is the way to go in this girl's opinion.

So, Sam asks Eric for help at Fangtasia, and he lounges there like he's in a photo shoot for GQ, smouldering at the youngins. Eric asks Sam if he could give him Sookie, calling it a "tribute," which I found interesting. In the books, Maryann asks Eric for a tribute directly, through her attack on Sookie. I can't recall Maryann calling hers a tribute quite so often as she calls for a "sacrifice." And it's not even for herself (as in the novels), but for another god.

Eric's interaction with the children has been a big hit, particularly the phrase, "teacup humans." I guess you would call this bittersweet if you're an Eric fan, counting the winking, the showing off his vampiric skills and not eating the children, but calling them "delicious" all the same. I'm sure the chatter on the Bill-friendly sites isn't nearly as light and "Aw. Eric! You rascal."

The flying scene was a bit anticlimactic, really It looked just the same as when they use the effect on Heroes. With this (above), I expected something flashier. Not that (below). In the books, I always pictured something more along the lines of hovering than actual Superman-style flying. I was more satisfied with the zoomy moves of last season, even if they were a bit cheesy.

Sookie pretty much walked into one of those cheesy haunted houses that they do for Halloween, only real. That's all I could think of when I saw it. Move from crazy hand chopping woman to intestine man to frisky coroner, all in the dark. And to the tune of screeching violins so you know you're supposed to be creeped out.

Of course, I thought, "Sookie's going to let him spoon her?" I had a yay Sookie moment when she was all, PAN FACE! Sookie's Fangtasia dress was also weird and amusing, but I thought the whole walk through was a little fake-looking.

Really perplexed by the egg. And the nest. Still.

About Lafayette and the last stand, or whatever you want to call it. Just another wtf, Maryann?! With the frickin' Wonder Woman powers.

Bill's visit with the Queen was something about which I was really concerned. I thought revealing that Bill had met Hadley would speed up the plot too much, but really, I don't think it revealed much of anything. At least not what it was supposed to. I'm worried that Bill's big downfall is just going to fizzle into a mix of information we already know and a man that's all tortured and conflicted and a victim of circumstance. That's not really what Bill is. But at this rate, I could see that happening. And I will not let the Bill fans be proved right. Not when I'm sure that they're wrong. I'm wacky that way.

I know the Bill or Eric debate is one for the ages, and a controversial one at its core, but I'm losing my faith in the writers' ability to convey the dickishness that makes Bill Compton the man we all know and compare to Eric.

Right now, I want to like Bill. I like Stephen Moyer and it pains me that we're going to see less of him as the seasons go by. If it weren't for the prospect of more Eric smirks, winks and tasty flesh (Zombie moment? There is a war brewing...), I might be more conflicted. But, what can I say? I take things for what they are. Only right now, what they are is wrong and colored with the positive spin of which I just can't approve. But revealing this big secret now would be ridiculous. That years of dramatic irony that would be a Maryann situation all over again. What is she? She's a maenad. Well, let's talk about it for two seasons. Then we'll tell you. That would be very bad, and boring and lose it's effect.

I guess I just want some book stuff to stay the same. There's things I love about certain books in the series and it just feels wrong without them.

So, lastly, we have the big Eric/Bill exchange, which is always just a big pissing contest. I especially like to watch Bill try to be tall next to Eric. Eric's flying hair is pretty brilliant, including the show of his vanity with the hands running through it, smoothing down.

Of course, Eric threatens Bill about Sookie, and Bill threatens Eric about the "V" dealing. It's strange that Eric is doing something the Queen doesn't know about. I think it's important to note that Bill admits to having given Sookie his blood, and that Eric is curious enough to guess that Bill had done so, presumably based on what he saw after Sookie's attack, or the fact that vampires often exchange blood with their lovers. This was something that many people commented on about the dream sequence. Eric looked very human-like because he had taken Sookie's blood earlier, whereas in real life, Bill had done the same and still looked very pale.

Overall, I feel the same way about this episode that I feel about most True Blood episodes. I'm extremely anxious to see it, obviously, but there's always a hint of apprehension attached. Maybe it's because I love the novels so much that any editing makes me sad. But I just can't feel right about the deletion of my favorite scenes (The Bill-Sookie hotel scene where Eric asks for a nightcap "Warm from the vessel," and mostly the Lycra. I will miss the Lycra.) in favor of the boring, repetitive and confusingly mysterious Maryann stuff. At least if they kill her off, we'll have a little peace from giant eggs and other similar wtf moments.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Episode 12 -- Eric! That's not Sookie!

Two weeks until True Blood's season finale, "Beyond Here Lies Nothin'." (That's September 13.) I know she's the Queen and all, but Eric! That's not Sookie! I don't approve of vampire/vampire kissage when it comes to Eric and Sookie. Tsk tsk.

I hope they explain the egg, because I am very confused by the egg. Sometimes book to show changes make no sense to me at all. You think when Charlaine Harris thought, "Maenad," she also thought, "Giant egg."? I think not.

Bill's being painted really positively now, but I'm not so sure how sacrificing Sam will go over with Sookie. There's no way they're killing Sam, btw. Maenad, or no. I'm mostly concerned about Eric and Sophie-Anne. Which now that I think about it, did we even hear her name yet? I can't recall.

All I can say is, two more weeks, people. Two more weeks. And there were too many quick cuts in this one, not enough dialogue snippets for my taste. I guess we'll have to wait to find out what happens later. Two weeks. Frowny face.

UPDATE (9/7/09 at 9 p.m.): I'm not so sure I can enjoy these scenes with Eric and the Queen in the finale now. Not after rumors of Alexander Skarsgard and Evan Rachel Wood dating for real surfaced here. I said on Twitter earlier today, "This is worse than when I found out our zodiac signs were incompatible." It's still true. Although, I'm slowly convincing myself it's just a rumor. Please?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

A & Me -- Cut Off My Arm, College.

It's 11:31 and I'm feeling shyt. I'm sitting home alone tonight. And I can't even watch True Blood online. (To the tune of "Backfire at the Disco" by The Wombats, if you please.) Note: This video is brilliant. People are jerks. I love Frosty's.

But seriously. Quirky song lyrics aside, I have something to say: I hate college. Why do I hate college? Well, for 3 weeks (2, but I'm blaming it for them not broadcasting on Labor Day as well) I hate it for keeping me away from my HBO. And my True Blood.

There are several things I've learned while REALLY waiting for True Blood. That's past Sunday, past 9 p.m. and past the point of my sanity. And I took the time to write them out in 10 colorful steps. You can actually pinpoint the moment I lost my mind.

Here I am, in my room in the semi-darkness in front of the computer, pacing back and forth stuffing my face with green grapes and Pepperidge Farm Goldfish (Original Style, fyi). And I feel like a mental patient. I'm compelled to eat these grapes, which are just sitting in my fridge, and I'm reminded of a story about my brother.

When he was little, after returning from the grocery store with my mother, he sat in front of the television with a bag of green grapes. He proceeded to eat the entire bag in one sitting and then threw up the same grapes all over himself.

Now, why am I reminded of this story? Because I'm getting pretty crazy. That is, I've eaten an entire bag of Goldfish and the grapes are just sitting there looking at me. I know that road leads to green vomit, but lack of True Blood has addled my brain.

But there are still lessons learned from this experience:

1. I thought waiting a week to watch True Blood was bad. Watching the hour between 9 and 10 o'clock tick by while you stare at the wall because you have no HBO is like watching someone cut off your arm and repeatedly beat you with it.

2. No HBO is the equivalent of being exiled to a Leper colony. At the time when you most want to vent, you're banned from all online outlets. That means Facebook, your favorite blogs and ESPECIALLY Twitter. (That includes BlogTalk. Frowny face.)

3. When you're waiting for an upload, sitting in the dark in front of your laptop, refreshing web pages every 40 seconds seems like a good idea. (For 3 hours.)

4. This waiting period feels somewhat like I'd imagine labor feels. There's shaking, sweating, mood swings, cursing and a sudden need for drugs. (Drugs = True Blood in this case.)

5. No True Blood Sunday at 9 p.m. makes me want to eat chocolate and ice cream more than any failed relationship ever could. If it ever gets cancelled, I'm padlocking my fridge or gaining 45 pounds.

6. Never knit while you wait. True Blood anxiety = Many dropped stitches and unhappy feelings.

7. People talk about masturbation in chat rooms more freely than they should. They're also stupid, mean and have terrible spelling and grammar.

8. I'd feel better about humanity if they didn't talk so much about boobs.

9. I get angry at people who just like Eric for his hotness or jumped on the bandwagon late in the game (after the dream sequence, much?). Chat names are usually something along the lines of Ericslover, Eric4Me and EricsBoyfriend. I feel like the best girl friend seeing her boy date another girl (or guy) when she wants him for herself.

10. I hate college. But only when it comes between me and my True Blood. Like sisters. I think those girls would be ripping off each other's heads if their man was Eric Northman.

There will be a recap when frickin' Niall Brigant sends a miracle my way. I've been working on the Newlin angle, and I think all that'll save me now is a little Fairy magic.

Sayonara from getting beaten by my own arm by my stupid education. More people would go to college if there was HBO. Hey, it goes along with my theory that taping Skars to my homework will improve my GPA. Melancholy thy name is Alison.

UPDATE: The end of this story? It's 1:04 a.m. I watched a jumpy grainy video with (thank God) good audio after several anxious hours. I also missed the last 15 minutes. Which I'm pretty sure was mostly Eric. And I'm also pretty sure that this time, that last bit of lovely True Blood actually exists. Unlike last week.

The end. Still armless. Like frickin' Jane Bodehouse when she's finished with that machete.

UPDATE: 11:15 a.m. Monday. Saw it all now. Recap will be up later tonight. Wtf, True Blood? Wtf. Giant egg?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Think Helicopters = Hot Swedish Pilots.

It's now twenty minutes of one and all I can hear out of my new dorm window is helicopters. And what do I choose to think about? What I always choose to think about. Pop culture references. There, I was feeling a little Pinky and The Brain action. In this case with the helicopterus interuptus, a little of this:

"The Drinking Song" by Moxy Fruvous:
I can't explain this except for my mom took me to a lot of folk fests as a kid. I still heart the Fruvous. Live Noise especially.

"Helicopter" by Bloc Party:
In my head it's this version by RAC. -- Free download for the album at Stereogum, btw and it's brilliant.

Short Film with Alexander Skarsgard -- Because I'll use any excuse... Did I mention it's a musical? And he wears a uniform and is a helicopter pilot? Interested now? I think so.

I can't sleep, but not bad. Not bad at all. I'll take a little Skars any day. Or a lot of Skars. I'll take some randomly literal pop culture references in there as well. Moxy Fruvous and Bloc Party may not make sense together, but why not? I try not to question my brain's connections. Maybe that's why I see a little True Blood in everything.

Oh, Skars. Is there anything I can't connect you to? Helicopters = Hot Swedish Pilots. I like it.

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