Saturday, December 02, 2006

I Appreciate Oxymoron...

Earlier in the day, I taveled to Oxymoron's house. While there, I met his beautiful daughter, listened to The Beatles' White Album (I mean the LP, not the CD) in thee "listening room", and received a bottle of Dogshhead 120 Minute Brew.

Oxymoron, I salute you!!!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Bye-Bye Lita; In Which Wikipedia is Copiously Referenced; Wherein Harrogate Proffers a Colbertian "Wag of the Finger"

After recently visiting the Wikipedia entry on Amy Dumas, aka Lita, and learning all about her bizarre background, how she became interested in and learned to join the ranks of Professional Wrestling, etc., Harrogate has come to feel guilty for not wishing the lady adieu as she moves on to pursue possibilities in Rock Music and Off-Broadway Theater.

Yes, this is the same Lita to whom Harrogate has often referred as a Walking Venereal Disease. But the harsh language, while applicable to the character Dumas masterfully portrayed towards the end of her run, ultimately stemmed from Harrogate's strict allegiance to John Cena. But then it was precisely Dumas's spectacular performance as a heel that made Cena's cutting and hilarious critiques possible in the first place.

And of course, Dumas underwent many turns over the course of her illustrious career, and, indeed, was often at her most compelling as a face.

All of which is to say, Amy Dumas, Bye-Bye. You and Edge were undoubtedly the most interesting thing about this past summer's WWE Raw, and that's including the Great Triple H's turn to face and the subsequent, magnificent reunion with Shawn Michaels and reformation of DX. Cena's been on fire all this last half of the year, but Harrogate bets Cene himself would be the first to credit you and Edge for providing him with the necessary thespian launching pad from which to take his game to the next level.

Now, with all of this being said, Harrogate finds it necessary to extend a Colbertian "Wag of the Finger" to Vince McMahon and his writers for letting Dumas go out as a heel. After everything she has done for Women's Wrestling (the women are still mostly eye candy, but some of them actually perform the High Risk wrestling moves now, and much of that was pioneered by Dumas), and for your oft-questionable programming in general: you guys should have let Dumas undergo a Face Turn so that she could have received ovations on her way out.

WWE, get it together. (You know, Harrogate's available if you want to hire a writer who knows how to make this thing take off, but that's another story....)

Until next time, Readers, Ciao.
Arena Rock for the Soul

Having been too long since Journey joined me on the open road, I decided to take their essential collection with me as I picked up Mrs. Oxymoron's cousin at Love Field airport in Dallas last night. Pumping from the stock stereo system in my '99 Honda Civic at a whopping 20 Watts per channel, these rockers made my trip effortless.

One of the many highlights in the collection is Lights, the video of which I posted above. Note Neal Schon's solo here. It's a simply spectacular and highly underrated. I ask you, dear readers, is it possible to listen to this solo without pulling the air guitar from the closet to play along? I don't think it is. I know I certainly can't.

Some useless rock trivia: At what age and with what artist/band did Schon begin his professional rock career? (Try to answer without consulting the Google.)

Marquee Rhetoric

Recent marquee listings at local theater - in the order in which they appeared:

The Return
The Departed

A Good Year
Harsh Times

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Couch Potato - Live - Weird Al Yankovic

Obviously dated by several years but damn it's funny. Weird Al's the man.

UNC/Ohio State Lives Up To Hype; Harrogate Now Knows Players' Names; Lawson the Next Felton?

Well, Readers, if ye missed last night's heart-pounding barn-burner between #1 Ohio State and #6 UNC (ESPN/Coaches Poll), then ye missed last night's heart-pounding barn-burner between #1 Ohio State and #6 UNC (ESPN/Coaches Poll).

To recap: Dickie V was right to insist throughout the broadcast that both of these teams are "Awesome, Baby!" "Awesome" is a powerful enough Rhetorical Move, but when it is followed by the Interlocutive Referent, "Baby!": why, then, the Speaker had better have better than a pair of threes in his proverbial hand. In this case Vitale had a straight flush; he was simply reporting that to which he was bearing witness.

Ty Lawson, whose Jersey decorates the top of this very post, is indeed "Awesome, Baby!" Harrogate very much agrees with those who see in this player a lot of (Everybody Loves) Raymond Felton. Like Felton, Lawson--incredibly--speeds up when he has the ball in his hand. Also like Felton, Lawson is a Pass-First guy who is simultaneously capable of scoring 20 points, easily. Look for this guy to cause lots of problems in the ACC and nationwide before it's over.

Of Tyler Hansbrough, what can Harrogate say that everyone in the college basketball conversation isn't already saying, hasn't already said, won't say again? Just look at the box score, linked above. Then imagine a performance about Twice As Good as what those orgiastic numbers indicate. Then you get some idea of what the Terminator did to Ohio State last night.

And really, the accolades go on. Freshman shooting guard Ellington scored 19 on his 19th birthday. Sophomore Danny Green attacked the basket and made smart decisions whenever he was in the game. Freshman slab Dion Thompson showed that he is pretty much unstoppable down low, whenever Roy called his number. Ginyard once again layed down the smack on defense: Harrogate loves this player.
Freshman power forward Brandan (I can get higher above the rim than you) Wright had a silent first half only to explode in the second, making his presence felt on both ends of the hallowed floor (game was at Carolina, that's why the floor was hallowed). Wes "Walk-On" Miller hit a couple of NBA-depth threes.

And in Harrogate's estimation, the biggest performance of them all might have come from Bobby "Pip" Frazer, who went on a small rampage towards the end of the first half and with Carolina struggling: He hit two huge threes in a row, and got a hustle-based steal followed by a full-court assist to Hansbrough who came through with the Big Ole Monkey Dunk.

In summation, Harrogate has decided that those who worry Carolina has "too much depth" this year are officially on crack. With Roy at the helm, this squad might develop a kind of Hockey Model, attacking in discernible Shifts, coming in Wave upon Wave upon Wave on Run Run Run, constant man-to-man defense, constant pressure, never tired, never scared.

They may be a little young to win it all, but they're gonna put the hurt on some teams before this season is through.

A Graphic; Wherein the Moniker 'Little Green Fascists' Experiences Analysis, Harrogate-Style

Harrogate recently came across the above picture, courtesy of Little Green Fascists. Actually, the picture itself has been around since March of 2004, but LGFascists brought it back last Friday when Our Eternal Hero, George W. Bush, swaggered his bad self right into Vietnam. Really, as everyone who was following the news undoubtedly knows, the whole thing smacked of Rambo.

But anyways, for those of you wondering about the name Little Green Facsists, it is a kind of liberal satire of the far right blog Little Green Footballs, to which Harrogate, as he is somewhat decent, cannot bring himself to link. Those who want to go there will find it.

Sort of like Hell.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

More From The Love Actually Countdown: Feeling It In Our Elbows and Knees; Also Wherein Harrogate Joins in Stereotyping Cavemen

Pointer Sisters - Jump (For My Love)

As we make that final turn into December (or, as WWE likes to call it,December to Dismember), the stakes continue to shoot upwards on Harrogate's Love Actually countdown to The Greatest Pop Song Ever Recorded. Here are The Pointer Sisters doing their unforgettable classic "Jump(For My Love)." By the by, Harrogate just loves the use of parentheses in titles: it adds so much to the Rhetorical poignancy of the thing. And yes, it's the original video. Anything less would be uncivilized, like those cavemen in the commercials.

Now, for those who cherish the memory of where this song appears in Love Actually (truly one of Hugh Grant's finest cinematic moments), Harrogate is delighted to post the following You Tube Video for your watching and listening entertainment.

Love Actually Hugh Grant Dancing

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Raw Review 11/27: Among Other Philosophical Stances, WWE Weighs In On Richards-Gate

First of all, for those looking for a scholarly source, Wikipedia has an authoritative entry on WWE's Tag-Team Cryme Tyme, which many experts around the Beltway predict will be the next Tag Team Champions. Anyway, last night, these guys performed a response to Richards-Gate that Harrogate invites all to watch. Already the blogosphere is alive with commentary. Renowned wrestling scholar Todd Martin of Smashmouth Driving, for example, powerfully observes:

They did a lame satire of the Michael Richards incident, with Cryme Tyme laying him out. It wasn’t funny, and WWE has some nerve knocking racism by having their racist caricatures beat up the racist

Harrogate tends to agree with this analysis on a surface level, although he suspects Martin might be joining the zillions who cannot find a shred of humor in serious things. Caricature and satire are longstanding American traditions, in politics and entertainment interchangeably. Does anyone really think Vince McMahon is taking "Cryme Tyme" and saying "look, here's how black people are"? Of course not! Instead McMahon is tapping into something, an archetype, a stereotype, whatever you wanna call it, and exploiting it for cash. What could be more American than that?

Anyway, thoughts on the clip?

Other than this skit, the other Rhetorically Provocative thing that went down in Pittsburgh was the bloody beat-down Ric Flair received at the hands of Edge and Randy Orton. Ostensibly a "message to DX," this beat-down nicely illustrates something Harrogate has been talking about for a long time. Readers, as you watch this excruciating clip, pay less attention to the actual event than to the expressions of the fans watching it. Indeed, consider the mood of the scene. It is the sublime artificiality of the thing that keeps us coming back for more, it is an example of what Theater can do better than anything else, including Live Music. Obviously, if the beat-down were really happening, people would stop it and thus get a kind of release. So it is the fakeness of the thing that ultimately freezes them. They are left transfixed before a horror they can barely comprehend. Only to witness the spectacle, that is the choice, the only choice. There is no asking the spoon to bend here. Pro wrestling does this as well as any artistic expression. Period.


And for your viewing pleasure, Harrogate closes this post by presenting Readers with what it looked like when Umaga finally extended an official challenge to John Cena for the Championship. This scene Vince's writers handled well. The two stared each other down, talked some shit, but never came to blows. This rivalry continues to build, and Harrogate likes it. Indeed, Harrogate gobbles it up.

If handled properly this rivalry might take WWE Raw to a whole 'nother level. Ciao.

Monday, November 27, 2006

"Do You Know Who You Are?" II

Bonus Post: The title, "Do you know who you are?" are the last words of whom?

"Do You Know Who You Are?"

An article from American Sexualty Magazine discusses an
Ex-Gay Community

The focus of Ex-Gay Communities is to provide "hope for heaing" in the conversion process. These communities deny an orientation approach to homosexuality and do not want to extend out rights (same-sex marriages) since there is no identity that correlates with the right.

This is a very interesting article for its discussion of identity. Last week, I attended a conference and, during one of the panels, a philosopher asked an ethnographer about how the ethnographer can conduct a study on the identity of others since philosophers possess so much doubt on the identity of the self. In this article, there seem to be a lot of existential issues: development of an identiy from anxiety and lonliness; development of an identity based on personal comfort; development of an identity to remove problems in life (drugs, alcohol); and devlopment and reinforcement of an identity through a community.

At the end, the discusison of "relapses" seems very important, especially since it contradicts the establishment of a new identity. It seems that the power to believe in something may override the "pure identity." Some individuals may adopt a religion that states homosexuality is a moral wrong and not a human condition even though the person may possess a same-sex orientation. In that case, the "Will to Believe" trumps biological dispositions.

In the end, one question remains: how can we know?

Facts of Life Flashbacks; Wherein It is Postulated That Girls Experience Peer Pressure Too, and Blair and Jo Kick Ass; Pete's Couch Foreshadowed....

Natalie's Reputation at Stake

Bongs: There Ought to be a Law!

You take the good.
You take the bad.
You take 'em both.
And there you have.
The Facts of Life.
The Facts of Life.