Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Dogs & Jeans Year in Review

At this time of year, news outlets compile their “Best Of” Lists. Why should Dogs & Jeans be any different? So in keeping with the spirit of the End of the Year season, here is a selection of some of the most popular postings over the past year:

You Might Be a Polygamist…
Need a Million Dollar Idea?
Who Wants to Survive a Hospital Visit?
Vegas Odds on Obama Saying “FoShizzle” During Inauguration Now 10:1

Saturday Night Low-Grade Fever
Don’t Bogart That Frozen Semen!

Break Up Myth Busters
Can Madoff Stay Clean While Avoiding the Prison Showers?

Do Women Need Men Once Hunting is no Longer for Food?
Iran, Iran So Far Away…
The Creepy Organ Music is Not the Only Way to Know You Are Reading FoxNews Online

How Well Do You Know Sarah Palin?
Justice Sonia Sotomayor: The Quicker Picker Upper

For Whom the Wedding Bell Tolls
Health Care That Makes Sense

Presidential Alcohol Promotes Racial Harmony
The Judge is Taking All Questions

How to Survive Your Health Care Town Hall
Obama: The Verklempt Mensch
Do You Splooge or Phlormp?

Obama to Kids: You Never Forget Your First Time
Great Moments in Kanye West Interruption History (this subject was good for two more posts as well. Thanks Kanye!)

Balloon Boy Dad Wrecks Blog Posting
Take This Job and Shove It

Sexy Men Hit Hard by Recession
Who Loves Twilight?
What Your Favorite Original Sesame Street Character Says About Your Personality

Florida Announces Golf Club Registry
Back in the USSR (even more ironic in light of the recent terrorist threat)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Naked, Restrained & Comatose: The Only Way to Fly

The unsuccessful terrorist attack on Christmas Day has led to another round of heightened security at airports across the Western world, and specifically in North America. Passengers who were currently expecting two hour long line-ups are now waiting up to three hours as each is subject to full body pat downs and a complete search of belongings. Further restrictions to carry-on baggage and freedom of movement before and during flights have made many people reconsider flying at all.

Fearful that more travellers will chose alternate transportation like car of train in the future, or decide to stay home entirely, the big three airlines today have announced radical new methods to eliminate the need for excessive pre-flight security.

American Airlines “All Nude” Flights:
If you are willing to forgo wearing clothes, along with any carry on luggage (and dignity) you can bypass metal detectors and the impersonal pre-boarding pat down. However, the body cavity search is optional and provided free of charge. It’s a breeze (and a very cool one at that) flying with American Airlines!

Delta Air’s “Hannibal Lecter” Flights:
Nothing says “Security” like a full body restraint and a face mask. Passengers who opt to be strapped down to a gurney for the duration of the flight can be wheeled on directly from baggage check with no need for a physical examination. Delta encourages travellers to “go” before they board as no catheterization is planned at this time.

US Airways’ “Slumber Party”:
Sedation is the antidote for Hijacking. Licensed nursing practitioners will inject travellers with a sedative in the boarding lounge and passengers will be loaded on the planes like a shipment of Thanksgiving turkeys. While you are happily dreaming in the clouds, you will actually be above the clouds for the duration of the flight, your vital signs being monitored at all times. However, due to uncontrolled environments in various terminals, US Air cannot guarantee the success of making connecting flights while passengers are unconscious. But think of the excitement of expecting to wake up in Denver only to find yourself in the airport in San Diego, or Dayton!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

It's a Wonderful Demotivation

Dogs & Jeans wishes all our readers a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. Following up on yesterday's review of "It's a Wonderful Life", here is a special collection of demotivational posters I actually did myself!
Be sure to check out Tent Camper's wonderful post today and send it to your family and friends.

See you all in a few days.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Is it "A Wonderful Life"?

If you are like me (and unfortunately far too few people in this world are), it's two days to Christmas and you've already seen 'It's a Wonderful Life' 21 times this month. I've watched that movie so many times, I don't need to watch it anymore; it plays like a "Director's Edition" version in my head 24/7.

However, last night's viewing was a unique experience. In much the same way Buddhists describe the Moment of Enlightenment, I was seeing the film through new eyes. Or maybe it's just because I've been writing a blog for too long. Who knows?

Anyway, here were my Live Updates:

The Angel Clarence Rushes to Meet Joseph and God/Jesus: A star zips in from the left side of the screen to talk to the two pulsating galaxies. Even with the primitive radio-telescopes of the mid-1940's, wouldn't the astronomers have noticed this anomaly? I've seen my fair share of disaster movies and I'm pretty sure this is the sort of thing that precedes the End of the World.

Harry Falls in the River: Why does the kid with the least mass slide the farthest? Don't Newton's Laws apply even with Mr. Potter running everything in town?

Mr. Gower's Cigar Lighter: I want one! And I don't even smoke, but I could burn all kinds of shit with that.

Mr. Gower Boxes George's Ear: So I'm guessing there are no labor laws preventing you from striking child employees. I know he was was drunk and sad and everything, but Gower looks like this isn't the first time he's beaten a child in the back room.

Dinner at the Baily Boarding House: Harry just sexually assaulted Annie the maid! This is not a family movie after all.

The High School Dance: Wasn't George supposed to have graduated only four years ago? He looks like he's one of the parents. Isn't that Alfalfa who turns the key to open the pool under the dance floor? Wait a minute. This is the middle of the Depression! That looks like a mighty expensive hydraulic system for a small-town high school. Maybe Mr. Potter made a hefty donation. Yeah, that must be the explanation.

George Tells Off Potter: Why can't I unload on someone like that just once in my life? "Just remember this, Mr. Potter, that this rabble you're talking about... they do most of the working and paying and living and dying in this community." Fuck that's good.

George & Violet: George has just left the party celebrating Harry & Ruth's wedding and he's bummed about his life. Voilet sees him from the curb and pounces. Is she a hooker now? And if not, who the hell are the two guys she was talking too. One even says "We'll wait here for you Baby!" wait for what? Isn't one of them sort of a third wheel? George wants her to climb Mt. Bedford; why weren't the boys sledding there instead of on the banks of that rushing river?

George Hooks Up With Mary: "I don't want any groundfloor and I don't want any plastics..." Clearly George has not seen "The Graduate". Wait a second! Less than 5 minutes ago he was trying to spend the night with Violet Bick! What a dog!

The Run on The Bank: The Building & Loan has a crow. I miss my crow.

Marriage, kids, the war blah blah blah. Forget the wallpaper; fix that fucking knob on the newel post! You'll thank me later in the movie.

Uncle Billy at the Bank: I always felt sorry for the poor guy. He is already a little addled, a widower, he works for his nephew; now he looses $8000 (in 1945 money). Doesn't Potter have some obligation under federal banking regulations to report finding the money? We never know what happens to him either. Maybe he goes on to run AIG?

George Get's Punched At Martini's Bar: So through this whole build up, we're made to think that George knows everybody in Bedford Falls. I find it hard to believe he doesn't know the husband of ZuZu's teacher who just sucker-punched him. And what a lousy husband. "She cried for an hour!" he says. Then what? You sedated her so you could go out drinking on Christmas Eve Mr. Welch? "I'm sorry you had a hard day at work Honey. Let's talk about it in the morning after I sober up."

George Wrecks His Car: Here's another guy who doesn't know George. He looks like Fred Murtz, but I bet it's not him.

George Gets His Wish: I like the wind blowing the tollhouse door open; that's a nice touch. David Cameron should take note that a simple special effect can be very effective.

After The Wish: "Nick's Place" looks like it's a lot more fun than "Martini's". Actually Pottersville looks like it's a lot more fun than Bedford Falls. Dancing, drinking, fighting in the streets, and this is supposed to be Christmas Eve. I bet this town really let's loose on a Saturday night.

The Graveyard: Clarence says Bailey Park isn't there because George wasn't there to build all those houses. However, it still would have been there in the "original" reality; Harry was buried there as a boy which means it is older than George's potential impact on the world. Therefore they had to move all the graves to build Baliey Park. That seems out of character for George doesn't it?

Mary at the Library: No way Mary winds up an old maid just because George was never born. Didn't she have Sam Wainright interested in her at the beginning? Somebody would have married her. Plus George not being born meant she needed glasses? Who's lack of birth can I blame for my astigmatism?

George on the Lam: As I said, Pottersville is a pretty wild town; George would not have stood out as a wildman. Bert empties his service revolver into a street packed with holiday revellers trying to bring down the fleeing George. It's a pretty safe bet the Pottersville PD has no Internal Investigations division.

The Finale: I know for a fact the bailiff is not free to just "tear up" an arrest warrant just because the defendant can supply a laundry basket full of cash. Once Ernie read the telegram from Sam Wainright saying George had been advanced up to $25,000, why didn't George start giving the money back to everyone that donated?

"To my Big Brother George, the richest man in town."

Damn, I'm crying again.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Christmas Gift of Music

Every November, North Americans are treated to an onslaught of Christmas music in the shopping malls which only builds to a 24 hour deluge on the radio by the middle of December. You can't even wait "on hold" to compian to the cable company without listening to Frosty's threat to return "someday".
To keep us all from going insane (and also to grease the wheels of capitalism with ear canal blood of the workers) the record companies always release a handful of new Christmas CD's. Some are just tired old retreads of holiday standards sung by castrated American Idol warblers like David Archuleta or croaky geriatrics like Bob Dylan.

Fans of music and Christmas have a few surprises this year to add to their yuletide listening:

If you are a lover of opera and The Godfather, then Andrea Bocelli's "My Christmas" is for you. Produced with the omni-present David Foster (or as he is known in the music biz: "John Williams Lite"), Bocelli's collection of traditional songs like "Silent Night" and "White Christmas" ranges between yelling at us in Italian or yelling at us in English with a thick Italian accent. I wasn't sure whether to clap and cheer "Bravo!" or kiss his ring the day of his daughter's wedding.

Those of you who enjoy listening to sleighbell accompanied madrigals will like Sting's "If on a Winter Night". The 15 original tracts were inspired by ' ye olde' English lullabies and carols but updated for today's tantric sex practitioners.

Perhaps the most unique Christmas CD released this year is Tori Amos' "Midwinter Graces". These 12 original songs continue Amos' unique writing, arranging and focus on feminist issues which has kept her hard to classify as an artist over the years. I've never been a huge fan of Tori Amos, but the music was lovely. However, the album never really hits a "Christmas" mood and after listening for an hour my vagina didn't feel, you know, ...'fresh'.

Once more, another crop of Christmas CD's has only reconfirmed what I said last year that the Greatest Christmas Album of All Time is Merle Haggard's "A Christmas Present"

Dogs and Jeans supports both types of popular music: Country and Western. 1973 saw the release of the greatest Christmas album of all time: Merle Haggard’s “A Christmas Present”. You can keep your Mariah Carey and Christina Aguilara warbling yuletide compilations. No collection of songs before or since has captured the emotions surrounding a modest Christmas of folks living below the poverty line.

As David Sprague’s review on Amazon says:
Christmas wasn't always the easiest time of year when Merle Haggard was growing up in Oklahoma. Money was tight and the elements were harsh, but faith helped the family get through. That's exactly the sense the country legend puts across on this holiday collection. Hard times are chronicled on songs like "Daddy Won't Be Home for Christmas" and "If We Make it Through December," but joy is found when the smallest of pleasures ("Grandma's Homemade Christmas Card") saves the day.

My favorite was always “Bobby Want’s a Puppy Dog For Christmas”; a father’s plea to Santa to fulfill the wish of his lonely son. I’m getting all verklempt just thinking about it. Talk amongst yourselves…
Okay I’m back.
“A Christmas Present” also contains Merle grumbling (he's no Adam Lambert) through traditional classics like “Silent Night” and “Jingle Bells”, but it’s his own tunes like “Santa Claus and Popcorn” that really make this record (how dated is that? A ‘record’) a timeless classic. Do yourself a favour: download (legally) a copy of The Hag’s "Christmas Present", pour yourself some bourbon and get ready to feel pretty darn lucky you aren’t an Okie from Muskogee in the early 70’s.

Monday, December 21, 2009

December Odd Relationship News

From Japan - A man has married an on-line video game character. Apparently even Japanese women are no longer docile or subservient enough for Japanese men. They can only have relationships with programmable, 2-dimensional images.

In a related story, Ms. Pacman has filed for divorce from Mr. Pacman and begun taking Japanese classes at her local community college.

From Great Britain - For the person who has everything, including a bad marriage, you can give them a voucher for 30 minutes with a divorce lawyer. With a significant discount from their normal hourly rates, the gift certificates from Lloyd Platt & Company are selling faster than girlfriends are coming out of Tiger Woods closet.

In a related story, British funeral homes are recommending their "Yule Tide Pre-order" of burial plots to any husbands using the vouchers as "stocking stuffers".

From New Zealand - A local Anglican church billboard showing Mary and Joseph in bed together has been condemned by the Catholic Church. The ad was intended to make people think about the spiritual meaning of Christmas, rather than the literal biblical virgin birth, however, "family" groups decry the promotion as disrespectful.

In a related story, an Italian poster showing Abraham sacrificing his son Isaac won the Vatican's "Improving Discinple in the Home" contest.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Demotivation

Since next Friday will be a little too late for a Christmas Demotivation posting (considering it will actually be Christmas and you will all likely be elbow deep in torn wrapping paper, or rocking an egg-nog buzz, or both) here are some festive, yuletide demotivational posters to really get you in the Holiday Spirit.
Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah from Dogs & Jeans.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Celine Dion Can't Help Tiger Woods

From the Dogs & Jeans "No Surprises" News Department - After being named the Associated Press' Athlete of the Decade, Tiger woods will be headed for the Divorce of the Decade. Reports are circulating that the soon-to-be-Ex Mrs. Woods is shopping around for a good divorce lawyer. Tiger can only hope it is quick and relatively painless. However, if the proceedings are going to drag on and on and on, nothing eases the sorrow like a good soundtrack (that's what made the "The Big Chill" watchable). But you have to be careful what you pick Tiger. For example:

  • "I Hate Everything About You" by Three Days Grace - Good Choice

  • "All By Myself" by either Celine Dion or Eric Carman, it doesn't matter - Bad Choice

  • "Won't Get Fooled Again" by The Who - Good Choice

  • "I've Been to Paradise (but I've never been to me)" by Charlene - Bad Choice

  • "Walkin' on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves - Good Choice

  • "These Boots are Made for Walking" by Nancy Sinatra - Bad Choice

  • "I Got a Brand New Girlfriend" by Steve Holy - Good Choice

  • "Baby come Back" by Player - Bad Choice

  • "Go Your Own Way" by Fleetwood Mac - Good Choice

  • "Wildfire" by Michael Martin Murphy - Very Bad Choice

  • "Love Lies Bleeding" by Elton John - Good Choice

  • "You're Beautiful" by James Blunt - Bad Choice

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Can Michael Vick Save the Climate Summit?

With only two days before the Copenhagen Climate Summit ends, talks are breaking down amid violent clashes outside the conference and combative words inside the facilities. With hindsight being 20/20, perhaps organizers should have seen the potential for agitation and confrontation when they planned some of the plenary sessions and addresses:

  • Child-based Upper Atmospheric Research for Profit by Richard Heene

  • How Good Taste Can Reduce Your Carbon Footprint presented by Lady Gaga

  • There Is No Climate Change (until one person decides to talk and then there is just a ton of it) presented by Tiger Woods

  • Using Carbon Credit Transfers to Increase Social Status presented in the lobby (under the stairwell) by Tareq and Michaele Salahi

  • A 12 Step Program for Climate Change presented by Lindsey Lohan

  • Spending Your Way to a Green Solution presented by the Harvey Golub, Chairman of AIG

  • Reducing Global Warming Through Natural Means co-presented by Alex Rodriguez and Manny Ramirez

  • Israel: The Polluter of Satan presented by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

  • Closing Address: This May Be a Good Conference, but 1995 The Dayton Summit was the Greatest of All Time presented (very briefly) by Kanye West.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Get Your Git'Mo Money America

The northern Illinois town of Thompson is hoping that relocating as many as 100 detainees from Gauntanamo Bay will have a positive economic impact on their economy. Other rural communities across the country are watching Thompson to see if they too should cash in on the spin-off, or "Falafel Effect". Job creation due to additional prison workers is not the only expected benefit:

  • An increase in mosque, and mosque-related construction.

  • Annual Haj travel bookings.

  • You want night life? Nobody knows how to party down like Islamic fundamentalists.

  • High end outlet malls featuring "Burkas-R-Us" and "Hookas, Hookas, Hookas".

  • Local pilot training facilities now needing to train students to land as well.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Back in the USSR!

The Bag Lady Racquetball Tournament was a great success. Delores Huntington from Regina will be representing Canada at the Vancouver Olympics and I’m sure she will make us all proud.

However, waiting in a series of airports over the past week allowed me to consider some of the oddities of air travel. So rather than spend time giving dating advice to Tiger Woods (what exactly is a “cocktail waitress” anyway? I’ve been drinking for years and never met one), here are some random observations about airplanes and airports.

What’s with all the typing Ticket Agents? When I arrive at the desk to check in my bag, I’ve already confirmed my reservation and printed off my boarding pass at the self-serve kiosk, almost all of it accomplished by pointing and clicking. So why does the agent require 120 key strokes to enter my name again 20 feet away? I’m in the system for crying out loud! My name has only 13 letters; what are you typing for 90 seconds? Are you updating your Facebook? And I already indicated I have one bag. Why are you asking me again? If you need to enter my name, flight number, destination, luggage and blood type again, what was the self-serve process for? Have I been entered in a draw for a free crappy head set I can use to watch ‘The Proposal” on the 3” x 2” screen in the seat back in front of me?

I like to browse in the airport terminal shops before boarding. I never need anything because I come loaded with books and magazines, but it does kill time. I understand why People, Newsweek, Motortrend and other magazines are sold to air travellers, but why are Playboy, Penthouse and Swank on the newsstands? The articles aren’t that good. How unnerving would it be to sit next to some creepo gingerly turning the pages of each nude pictorial? Does he (and I assume it’s a he) point to Miss December eating a popsicle in the shower and ask you opinion on the lighting? Or does he just take frequent trips to the washroom for some “in-depth” study?

And speaking of the washroom, I suspect that whole Mile-High Club is a myth. There is barely enough room for me to urinate in there; how do you fit in a partner? Seriously, have you smelled the airplane bathroom? There is so much disinfectant it makes a morgue smell like a spring meadow.

With all the cutbacks these days, I appreciate there is still a free beverage service but how about just giving me the whole can of Pepsi? How much money are you saving by pouring the can into the tiny plastic cup, only to refill it on your next pass?

Airlines operate on a “Safety First” policy (and comfort second) which is why the attendants pay such close attention to pre-flight instructions. Flying in Canada, you get to enjoy the seatbelt bucking demonstration in both English and French. However I don’t understand the Soviet-style fervour employed to “ensure your seat back is returned to an upright position”. If my 737 ends up in a flaming, crumpled heap at the end of the runway, the 3 degrees I was able to recline isn’t going to cost me my life. I’d bet the exploding jet fuel and shrapnel will be a more likely cause of death.

Baggage handlers have a great sense of humour. I have long suspected they keep three unclaimed suitcases they then send down the chute in advance of each flight’s luggage just to tease the exhausted passengers. We all stand there watching those same bags go round and round the carousel for 20 minutes wondering if our bags are on their way to Mogadishu or Dayton.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Early Friday Demotivation

There will be no Dogs & Jeans posting tomorrow due to an unexpected Bag Lady Racquetball Tournament. However, since many people enjoy the Friday Demotivation Series - The Best From Around the Web, we'll post it here today.

This week's theme: If you need some motivation to resume your exercise regime after Thanksgiving, look no further.