Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Happy 29th Birthday to Martina Hingis.
As an added bonus her 2-year ban finally ends today.
Despite many WTA players making their comebacks recently.
It seems she still has no intentions to do so.
But I am looking forward to seeing her in the crowd at the Grand Slams at least.
Perhaps even participating in a few player honoring ceremonies, and hopefully a few more charity events.
Happy B-Day Martina!. Here's to happiness in your life off the court =).
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
I admit it: I'm a bigot. A hopeless bigot at that: I know my particular prejudice is absurd, but I just can't control it. It's Apple. I don't like Apple products. And the better-designed and more ubiquitous they become, the more I dislike them. I blame the customers. Awful people. Awful. Stop showing me your iPhone. Stop stroking your Macbook. Stop telling me to get one.
Seriously, stop it. I don't care if Mac stuff is better. I don't care if Mac stuff is cool. I don't care if every Mac product comes equipped a magic button on the side that causes it to piddle gold coins and resurrect the dead and make holographic unicorns dance inside your head.
I'm not buying one, so shut up and go home. Go back to your house. I know, you've got an iHouse. The walls are brushed aluminum. There's a glowing Apple logo on the roof. And you love it there. You absolute MONSTER.
Of course, it's safe to assume Mac products are indeed as brilliant as their owners make out. Why else would they spend so much time trying to convert non-believers? They're not getting paid. They simply want to spread their happiness, like religious crusaders.
Consequently, nothing pleases them more than watching a PC owner struggle with a slab of non-Mac machinery. It validates their spiritual choice. Recently I sat in a room trying to write something on a Sony Vaio PC laptop which seemed to be running a special slow-motion edition of Windows Vista specifically designed to infuriate human beings as much as possible.
Trying to get it to do anything was like issuing instructions to a depressed employee over a sluggish satellite feed. When I clicked on an application it spent a small eternity contemplating the philosophical implications of opening it, begrudgingly complying with my request several months later. It drove me up the wall. I called it a bastard and worse. At one point I punched a table.
This drew the attention of two nearby Mac owners. They hovered over and stood beside me, like placid monks.
"Ah: the delights of Vista," said one.
"It really is time you got a Mac," said the other.
"They're just better," sang monk number one.
"You won't regret it," whispered the second.
I scowled and returned to my infernal machine, like a dishevelled park-bench boozer shrugging away two pious AA recruiters by pulling a grubby, dented hip flask from his pocket and pointedly taking an extra deep swig. Leave me alone, I thought. I don't care if you're right. I just want you to die.
I know Windows is awful. Everyone knows Windows is awful. Windows is like the faint smell of piss in a subway: it's there, and there's nothing you can do about it. OK, OK: I know other operating systems are available. But their advocates seem even creepier, snootier and more insistent than Mac owners. The harder they try to convince me, the more I'm repelled.
To them, I'm a sheep. And they're right. I'm a helpless, stupid, lazy sheep. I'm also a masochist. And that's why I continue to use Windows – horrible Windows – even though I hate every second of it. It's grim, it's slow, everything's badly designed and nothing really works properly: using Windows is like living in a communist bloc nation circa 1981. And I wouldn't change it for the world, because I'm an abject bloody idiot and I hate myself, and this is what I deserve: to be sentenced to Windows for life.
That's why Windows works for me. But I'd never recommend it to anybody else, ever. This puts me in line with roughly everybody else in the world. No one has ever earnestly turned to a fellow human being and said, "Hey, have you considered Windows?" Not in the real world at any rate.
Until now. Microsoft, hellbent on tackling the conspicuous lack of word-of-mouth recommendation, is encouraging people – real people – to host "Windows 7 launch parties" to celebrate the 22 October release of, er, Windows 7. The idea is that you invite a group of friends – your real friends – to your home – your real home – and entertain them with a series of Windows 7 tutorials.
So you show them how to burn a CD, how to make a little video, how to change the wallpaper, and how to, oh no, hang on it's not supposed to do that, oh, I think it's frozen, um, er, let me just, um, no that's not it, um, er, um, er, so how's it going with you and Kathy anyway, um, er, OK well see you around I guess.
To assist the party-hosting massive, they've also uploaded a series of spectacularly cringeworthy videos to YouTube, in which the four most desperate actors in the world stand around in a kitchen sharing tips on how best to indoctrinate guests in the wonder of Windows.
If they were staring straight down the lens reading hints off a card it might be acceptable; instead they have been instructed to pretend to be friends. The result is the most nauseating display of artificial camaraderie since the horrific Doritos "Friendchips" TV campaign (which caused 50,000 people to kill themselves in 2003, or should have done).
It's so terrible, it induces an entirely new emotion: a blend of vertigo, disgust, anger and embarrassment which I like to call "shitasmia". It not only creates this emotion: it defines it. It's the most shitasmic cultural artefact in history. Watch it for yourself.
Still, bad though it is, I vaguely prefer the clumping, clueless, uncool, crappiness of Microsoft's bland Stepford gang to the creepy assurance of the average Mac evangelist. At least the grinning dildos in the Windows video are fictional, whereas eerie replicant Mac monks really are everywhere, standing over your shoulder in their charcoal pullovers, smirking with amusement at your hopelessly inferior OS, knowing they're better than you because they use Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard.
Snow Leopard. SNOW LEOPARD.
I don't care if you're right. I just want you to die.
I heart this article, so sad and yet so true, and so hilarious!!. *LOL*.
And even though I'm a hopeless PC slave myself I adore those Mac commercials. Pure genius.
Unlike the PC ones which are pathetic pieces of crap.
Yep, I'm just as confused and conflicted as the guy who wrote this thing! :D.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Derek & Joanna started the night off with an energetic Jive. I thought it was very well done, but compared to the Jives of season's past (such as Kristi Yamaguchi's in S6 for example) it kinda fell short.
I should also mention middle judge Len (or as I like to call him grumpy) was missing tonight (he's busy judging the original Dancing with the Stars in England) but will be back next week.
His replacement was pleasant, but I did not agree with his assesment of Derek's and Joanna's lack of relationship/coupleness in the dance.
I don't know what dance he was watching, but those 2 looked as couply as could be. They were given a score of 20/30. So not bad, but not outstanding.
Alec & Natalie were next with a Quickstep that again really didn't wow me. And unlike the Joanna/Derek number lacked chemistry.
The judges reminded her she needs to remember to breathe in between each move (instead of holding her breath as she's used to when swimming).
I would have to agree it made the whole performance look really stiff. I do hope she is given another chance though.
Because I still believe she could get better with more work. Surprisngly they scored one point higher then Joanna and Derek with 21/30.
Anna & Chuck I mentioned last week that I thought the guy had potential and he demonstrated just that tonight with a very agressive/scary Tango.
With this type of intensity I think he's gonna be perfect for the Paso Doble, so I really hope he sticks around for a while yet.
Btw. nice touch topping the dance off with the ripping of the shirt at the end, and showing off your six pack there Chuck.
The dance may have only earned a 19/20 from the judges, but it'll score you a few extra votes with the ladies.
Also count yourself very lucky that Len was away this week, or he might have docked a point for peck envy;).
Mark & Melissa Joan Heart I do love watching this man do the Jive.
Nice to see her finally relax a little bit, now if she works a little harder on the steps she may just turn into a contender. 19/20 seemed to be a popular score for the first half of the night.
Anna & Micheal kudos to both of them for a big improvement over last week.
This time he was given more content with the Quickstep and handled it quite well. Still not a fave of mine, but with a score of 20/30 perhaps all hope is not lost for him yet.
Maks & Debi another major improvement over last week, but still no likeability factor for me. Their tension filled training sessions certainly helped sell a very convincing Tango.
I don't see her going too far in the competition however. They earned a point higher then the couple before them.
Chelsie & Louie I like these 2 together both being the youngest in the show they have wonderful enthusiasm when dancing.
Unlike the judges I quite enjoyed their Jive, I thought it was fun and edgy. This guy definitely has a lot of promise. With 19/30 they are at the bottom of the leader board, but a point above one other couple.
I hope people vote for them, I enjoy his exuberance and would like to see more of it.
Karina & Aaron aka kermit the frog. With a Jive set to the theme from the Muppet Show (complete with a green attire and the muppets themselves) he's slowly becoming the man to beat. With 27/30 he also became a judge favourite.
I'm liking his confidence too, although if he isn't careful the judges will start expecting perfection everytime thus getting picky. Which as many contestants have found out in the past could dramatically lower your score.
Louis & Kelly didn't fair too well with their Tango. Unfortunetly the pressure of expectations and Kelly's own perfectionist tendencies caused her to make a bunch of costly mistakes.
Dropping her score to 19/30. I do hope this small hiccup doesn't discourage her from continuing on the way she has in the first week.
And I hope her fans dial their thumbs off tomorrow, because she deserves to stay. Along with Aaron and Mya, Kelly is one of the best dancers this season. Hang in there Kelly!.
Tony & Kathy poor Tony is not having much luck this season. The Quickstep dropped them to the bottom of the judges leader board with 18/30. They could be in danger of being booted off tomorrow.
Lacey & Mark also did a Quickstep with a slightly better total score of 21/30.
Apparently Mark slipped at one point during the dance, but he did a very good job of covering it, because I didn't even notice. Guess it's a good thing I'm not a judge *lol*.
I find Mark and Lacey highly entertaining, so I'm rooting for him to make it to next week.
Dmitry & Mya along with Aaron had the best Jive of the night, they also received the same score tying them for 1st place on the score board.
Also is it me or did Dmitry steal Mark Ballas's nerdy glasses from S6?. He did look very Clark Kent-like though so I forgive him.
Gotta say I'm impressed with the skills Mya has shown so far. If she continues to do well she could be breaking away from the rest, and putting herself at the top very early.
Cheryl & Tom I hate to admit it, but it was actually a decent looking Tango (well if you don't count him almost dropping Cheryl to the floor at the very end that is).
He does have a surprisingly strong hold and frame. But I hope his low score of 18/30 combined with the slip with Cheryl finally gets him off the show.
He's doing absolutely nothing for me, but on the bright side at least he didn't attempt anymore lame jokes this week.
Kym & Donny well played Donny, well played. You toned down your showmanship and turned out a somewhat youthful Jive.
Speaking of what's the deal with all the age cracks?. 51 is not old!. Look at Ellen. Anyhoo Donny got a score of 25/30 not too shabby.
With so many low scores it'll be interesting to see who gets kicked off (I'm hoping it's either one of the 2 I picked).
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Former world number one Justine Henin has announced she will return to professional tennis in 2010.
Henin, who retired in May 2008 at the age of 25 saying she no longer had any passion for the game, plans to play exhibition matches in Dubai and Charleroi, Belgium ahead of a full WTA Tour comeback at the start of next year.
"I'm really happy and deeply moved to be able to announce tonight that I'm coming back to competitive tennis," Henin told RTL-TVI on Tuesday.
"These past 15 months have been enriching... but there is a flame that has been re-lit. I thought it had been put out forever."
"Subconsciously, it might have had an impact," Henin said. "But it certainly was not the most important reason." Henin has seven Grand Slam titles among a total haul of 41 career victories and was credited with the best backhand in the women's game prior to her shock decision to call it quits. She has won the French Open four times, the US Open twice, the Australian Open once and an Olympic gold in 2004, leaving Wimbledon as the only major tournament to have eluded her. The Liege-born player was world number one for 117 non-consecutive weeks, a position she held when she retired 16 months ago citing a succession of injuries and a desire to live a life away from tennis. Henin, whose Grand Slam return will be at the Australian Open in January, is to once again be coached by Carlos Rodriguez. "I swear I was extremely surprised," he said. "I'm happy because at the end of the day it's what she loves. "She has entrusted me (to be her coach) once again and I will try to never let her down. "I'm very happy to be helping her to restart her new life. It's a super challenge for her. "The desire to win Wimbledon is one of the main reasons she's come back and I'll do everything to help her do it." WTA Tour chief Stacey Allaster was delighted to welcome back Henin. "Justine is one of the great champions in the history of women's tennis and we, along with millions of her fans around the globe, are thrilled with her announcement today," Allaster said in a statement. "Justine is that rare athlete who decided to step away from the game at the height of her powers and no doubt she will be a force to be reckoned with. Her career was marked by so many amazing moments and a new chapter begins today."
The 27-year-old's retirement u-turn comes just over a week after fellow Belgian Kim Clijsters capped her own comeback with victory at the US Open.
The Argentinean revealed that one of the principle reasons behind Henin's comeback was a desire to win Wimbledon.
"Subconsciously, it might have had an impact," Henin said. "But it certainly was not the most important reason."
Henin has seven Grand Slam titles among a total haul of 41 career victories and was credited with the best backhand in the women's game prior to her shock decision to call it quits.
She has won the French Open four times, the US Open twice, the Australian Open once and an Olympic gold in 2004, leaving Wimbledon as the only major tournament to have eluded her.
The Liege-born player was world number one for 117 non-consecutive weeks, a position she held when she retired 16 months ago citing a succession of injuries and a desire to live a life away from tennis.
Henin, whose Grand Slam return will be at the Australian Open in January, is to once again be coached by Carlos Rodriguez.
"I swear I was extremely surprised," he said. "I'm happy because at the end of the day it's what she loves.
"She has entrusted me (to be her coach) once again and I will try to never let her down.
"I'm very happy to be helping her to restart her new life. It's a super challenge for her.
"The desire to win Wimbledon is one of the main reasons she's come back and I'll do everything to help her do it."
WTA Tour chief Stacey Allaster was delighted to welcome back Henin.
"Justine is one of the great champions in the history of women's tennis and we, along with millions of her fans around the globe, are thrilled with her announcement today," Allaster said in a statement.
"Justine is that rare athlete who decided to step away from the game at the height of her powers and no doubt she will be a force to be reckoned with. Her career was marked by so many amazing moments and a new chapter begins today."
Ok, who saw this coming?. First Kim now Justine, the Belgians are making a comeback!.
Throw Martina Hingis back in the mix, and I would be one happy tennis fan (yes I will never let that dream go *lol*).
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Sarah Michelle Prinze and husband Freddie Prinze Jr. are parents, PEOPLE has learned exclusively. The couple "welcomed their daughter Charlotte Grace Prinze on Saturday, Sept. 19," says a rep for the actress. "The family is over the moon."
Congrats to the proud parents:).
And can we have a yay! for not going the celebrity route and actually giving the child a normal name.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Debi Mazar (actress) & Maksim Chmerkovskiy to the untrained eye she seemed to do quite well with her Salsa, but the judges really weren't impressed.
At the moment I can't seem to find a likeable quality to this celeb. She's kinda blah, and the motor-mouth bit seems to really be getting on Maks's nerves.
I bet he's wishing he could have someone like Mel B. back again. I don't know whether the audience has warmed up to her enough either, I think she might be in danger of going home tomorrow.
Melissa Joan Heart (aka Sabrina the Teenage Witch) & Mark Ballas were next on the dance floor with the Viennese Waltz.
Which I've never been a fan of to be honest I don't find it exciting enough, but when done right it can be elegant.
Unfortunetly very few people get it right (as was the case with this group with the exception of one, but more on that later).
As for Melissa's chances I think she's very lucky to get Mark because he and Derek always have the best choreography routines, so with him to lead her and more time and training she could do well.
And unlike the first contestant she actually is quite likable.
Mya (music artist) & Dmitry Chaplin I have to say much better job on the Viennese Waltz then Melissa. It even got Len and Bruno into the first tiff of the season.
She's definitely got a lot of potential, we'll see how she does down the road (assuming she goes through tomorrow).
Kathy Ireland (supermodel) & Tony Dovolani I thought she did alright nothing exciting, but not tragic either. Showed some promise.
Usually how it goes with people who have no dance experience is they either improve and get really good as the show goes on, or they're a total disaster.
And it's too early for me to determine exactly where Kathy fits in yet. We shall wait and see.
Natalie Coughlin (Olympic swimmer) & Alec Mazo The Salsa really didn't make an impression on me, but she didn't do too horribly either. Athletes have always done well on the show, so she could break out of the competition later on.
Macy Gray (music artist) & Johnathan Roberts eccentric is a good word to describe her, what a character!. I'm not sure how well she resonated with the audience, but they might want to keep her on for entertainment value alone.
Joanna Krupa (model) & Derek Hough Boy, Derek seems to have the magic touch when it comes to models doesn't he?. I always look forward to seeing what Derek has in store and he certainly didn't disappoint.
As Len said that was one hot Salsa! (about time too I kept waiting for one all night, but they all kept coming up short).
I have to say I was very impressed with Joanna, this might be very presumptuous of me but if she continues like this through out she could make it all the way to the end.
Kelly Osbourne & Louis Van Amstel This was the pairing I was most excited about and with good reason.
She really shed her tom-boy persona with a wonderfully graceful Viennese Waltz. By far the best one of the night. I'm rooting for her all the way besides Joanna, Kelly has the most potential to make it really far.
The Relay dances were fun. Cha Cha (Kelly, Mya, Melissa & Macy) vs. Foxtrot (Debi, Kathy, Joanna & Natalie) . I thought team Cha-Cha was much more entertaining.
As for who might be eliminated tomorrow, it's a tough call it could be Michael Irvin or Ashley Hamilton (though I really hope I'm wrong).
I would rather if Tom Delay was the first to go. As for the ladies it's between Kathy Ireland, Macy Gray and Debi Mazar.
Yes I know I didn't re-cap any of the judges scores I find them irrelevant at this point in the competition (I'll start doing them further down the line maybe in the 2nd or 3rd week).
But if you really want to you can check them out here.
Monday, September 21, 2009
This year we've got 16 competitors instead of the usual 11 (I guess ABC decided it was time to finally take a page from the original British version Strictly Come Dancing).
I have to say when I first heard who the guys were I wasn't too excited. But after watching them dance I do have a few faves already.
At the moment Aaron Carter and Mark Dacascos are the real stand-outs for me.
Well, there's Donny Osmond as well, but I find that he sometimes goes a little over the top with the showmanship. Which detracts from the actual dancing itself.
In the second half of the show all the contestants faced off in a dance relay with the Salsa and Viennese Waltz.
Which was a first usually these types of things are done deep into the competition, so this was a bit surprising but fun nonetheless.
Chuck Liddell (UFC Fighter) & Anna Trebunskaya I thought the Foxtrot was weak, but there was definite potential in the relay Salsa number. With more practice he could go far.
Mark Dacascos (iron chef host/actor) & Lacey Schwimmer these two seem like a good match.
They have definite chemistry. I thought their Kung-Fu Cha-Cha was very inventive and highly entertaining (the costumes certainly helped).
I do agree with Len he does need to be careful not to go over the line too much between Kung-Fu and dance.
The guy has some major muscles which on a dance show could be a real plus (am I right ladies? ;). He's definitely another one with real potential.
Ashley Hamilton & Edyta Sliwinska this guy needs a lot of work, but could turn into a real contender if he sticks around.
He's got one thing going for him that his dad didn't, he's a lot more handsome. There's something about him I really like.
Might be that he's an underdog of sorts (the judges are not big fans of his thus far), or maybe part of me really wants to root for him after hearing his story. But either way I hope he gets more chances in the weeks to come.
Also can I have a yay! for Edyta not being stuck with another football player.
Seriously, who thinks Edyta finally put in a 'no football players' clause in her contract?.
On second thought she does have a talent when it comes to working with big bulky guys (a talent the new professional may not possess). More on that later.
Donny Osmond & Kym Johnson As I mentioned above his showmanship can be a bit much at times, and I didn't think his Foxtrot was all that.
But he did do an awesome job in the Salsa Relay. There are no worries in terms of him getting through since like his sister Marie, he's got a huge fan base.
Louie Vito (snow border) & Chelsie Hightower another unique pair. This guy is definitely not a dancer but could turn into one with more training. I think he'll be interesting to watch.
Michael Irvin (Former NHL Football player) & Anna Demidova nothing special with this guy, he looked slow and clunky on the dance floor (but the fact that he hardly had any content to work with could have something to do with it).
Why is it that the professionals are always afraid to give the footballers more to work with. Edyta Sliwinska has proven that many of them can dance. I'd say the new proffessional dancer has her work cut out for her.
Tom DeLay (politician) & Cheryl Burke even though I admit this guy did have moments of great potential I don't see him going very far.
In fact I think poor Cheryl got the short end of the stick this time (and no it has nothing to do with his age or lack of sex appeal).
Aaron Carter & Karina Smirnoff I've saved the best for last. Out of all the guys I think Aaron has the biggest chance at doing very well in the show.
He used to annoy the hell out of me as a little kid, but has grown on me in recent years. He's definitely got the most talent. I think he'll be a lot of fun to watch.
Looking forward to seeing what the ladies have in store.