Quimby The Mouse

A couple of weeks ago (April 23rd) my girlfriend and I went to see the live broadcast of This American Life at the United Artists Denver Pavilions. I’m a huge fan of This American Life but this show was a failure. Mostly the theater was a failure.

First off tickets prices were $20. Way too steep for anything on a movie screen. Technical difficulties abound and the entire audience missed the entire first segment of the show. Since it was a live telecast there was nothing the theater could do. Every paying customer was given a free movie voucher at the end of the show, but with a value of about $7 this was only a third of the actual ticket price paid.

What we did see was great though. And if you missed it you can download the episode online or go see the encore event on May 7th. Unfortunately I would recommend against spending your hard earned dough in this way, donate it to your local public radio instead.

One of the highlights of the live episode was this video called “Quimby The Mouse” put together by Chris Ware (with music by Andrew Bird, Animation by John Kuramoto).

Chris Ware just makes you want to kill yourself. The more you hurt from his art the better he feels – and that’s what I like about him.

The Food At Casa Bonita

You’re right, nobody goes to Casa Bonita for the food. But because buying a meal is mandatory for entrance, nobody goes to Casa Bonita without the food. Long heralded as the worst Mexican food in Denver, the dinners and lunches at Casa Bonita have become a legend in themselves. Below is a picture of the combination meal that I ordered a couple of weeks ago. Does it really look all that bad? Rest assured it tasted nearly exactly like it looks. Horrible.

Is It Really That Bad? The food at Casa Bonita

Other photos from my trip to Casa Bonita can be found in this flickr set.

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2008: The Year in Movies

Below are the top 5 highest rated movies I saw during 2008, including a short review and my rating out of 10. Two of the movies I saw during 2008 scored a ten out of ten – Juno and This Is Spinal Tap . Last year, not a single movie I saw deserved that honor (honor?).

1. Juno
Fast and furious one liners, witty comedy, hip music references, and pregnant teenagers. What’s not to like?

2. This Is Spinal Tap
How much more awesome could this movie be? The answer is none. None more awesome.

3. Once
Simply a lovely, long, graceful, heart wrenching/warming music video.

4. Ratatouille
A delightful movie about food, family, work, life and dreams. An original story with some great laughs. Oh yeah, some pretty decent animation in there too.

5. Lars And The Real Girl
A sweet and honest story that tweks the heart strings and funny bones just right.

I figured that I might as well add the worst movie I saw all year. You know, just to make things complete.

1. The Gaurdian
Pretty much just a stereotypical bore.

Cirque Du Soleil – Corteo

Cirque Du Soleil’s show Corteo was gravity defying amazingness – completely brimming over with incredible acrobatics requiring superhuman coordination.

I have never been to a Cirque show before but I had a bit of an idea of what I was in for and it didn’t let me down, it fact it far exceeded my expectations. This was nice. Basically the show is a rumpus of gymnastics, costumes, emotion, live music, and humor.

Tickets are pretty expensive but worth it and there really isn’t a bad seat in the house. I’m really excited to see love in vegas sometime in the not-too-near future. There are a few youtube clips of favorite acts after the jump.

How To Get The Gifts You Want

The holidays are over and you’re already tired of all the crap that was given to you that you didn’t really want in the first place. It doesn’t have to be that way. This year, although I didn’t get everything I wanted, I wanted everything I got; without having to return anything. So while your stuck with the Doom 3 Board Game I’m opening up gifts I actually wanted.

How did I do it? Well the first step is to be easy to shop for. Have lots of hobbies and interests and then talk about them. But also start a wishlist. Do it now so that there is plenty to choose from by the time your next birthday rolls around. Then when your uncle Guido asks you what you want for your birthday you can say “This Stuff”, then shoot him an email of your wishlist. I’ve been keeping a wishlist for a couple of years now and it’s worked like a charm. I suggest not sending your wish list to people who doen’t actually ask you what you want or you’ll come of as a greedy little ingrate. Below are a bunch of webapps, a short review, to help you get your wishlist started. Remember, the easier you make buying the gifts you want, the better your chances of receiving them are.

Willy Juanka And The Cha Cha Factory

I saw Cabaret Diosa’s last show (ever!) on Friday at the Boulder Theater. Titled “Willy Juanka and the Cha Cha Factory”, it must have been one of the most turbo fun and sexually charged shows I’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy. Seriously, it was more fun than a janitor juggling chainsaws!

Cabaret Diosa is known more as a performance art group than an a straight-up band. Of it’s many musicians, (there must have been at 10+ members on stage at all times, not including the oompa loompas and various others characters running around) some are in bands in Chicago and Austin among other places. The percussionist, Manuel Rabinizmo, owns a film production company. The female lead singer, Montana del Fuego, is starting a Cirque du Soleil-style dance show at the St. Julien this winter. The band is full of talent both musically and otherwise making for a quality production.

The show was an unbelievable re-enactment of the entire “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory Book” laid on top of a new mambo revival/tiki theme, all of which was given the self imposed rating of NC-17. The show started out with a custom made motion picture featuring the members of the band acting out the “golden ticket” scenes with all sorts of extra laughs and naughty, raucous behavior. A great way to introduce what band members would be playing what story characters.

The stage antics were astonishing. There was an actual pipe on the stage that sucked up Agustus Gloop. There was a version of the Candy Man that involved all kinds of sexual innuendo from sucking lollipops to smearing chocolate all over their faces. There was an phenomenal cover of Bow wow wow’s “I Want Candy”. Veruca Salt was eaten by a giant duck that kept yelling Aflac. The river boat scene, that had an actual boat, was done to a cover of Ozzy Osborne’s “Crazy Train”. There was a disco ball interlude and all kind of other lighting and special effects. There were oompa loompas who stripped down to nothing but panties and pasties. Violet Beauregarde was blown up to an enormous size. It was all so incredibly elaborate and downright fun. Everyone in the audience wore costumes. Golden tickets were handed out for free shows and free drinks. Congo lines danced through the audience. There was a weird cover of Dick Dales “Miserlou“. There were sweaty bodies dancing the night away till the show finally ended sometime around two in the morning. There was an oncore consisting of a cover of Queens “We Are The champions”. Caberat Diosa finished of the night with each member dawning a large drum and marching into the audience for a half hour jam “Rhythym Of The Saints” style. It was all pretty staggering. An undeniably wonderful night.

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