Sunday, June 15, 2008

Here comes the sun and other weekendly snippets

As predicted about a week ago, the disappearance of the clouds from the sky leads to the clearing of the clouds in my mind. 

It also doesn't hurt that Surfergrrl and I have backstage! passes! to! JACK! JOHNSON!

For reals!!!!

Us and Jack, in barefoot glory, eating banana pancakes. Just you wait. He's writing a song about it.


Does anyone remember, back in the days of The Sixth Sense, when M. Night Shyamalan was considered a creative new force in cinema?

Knowing that makes watching The Happening infinitely more painful.

I don't even have the words to express what a bad movie this was. The theatre starting laughing hysterically when a tear-stained John Leguizamo shouted "Don't take my daughter's hand unless you mean it!", and then just didn't stop... and it wasn't supposed to be funny. Even when Marky Mark shouted "We'll be okay if we outrun the wind!", it wasn't supposed to be funny. Seriously, it was some of the most lazy and cliched filmmaking I've ever seen. We actually were laughing hysterically for the next day about how horrific it was. It makes Snakes on a Plane look like an Oscar contender.


Saturday was wonderfully sunny, which excited the Duke and I to near manic levels. We decided that frolicking in the sunshine was the most important item on our agenda, and headed off to the lovely green seclusion of the botanical gardens.

I may eventually move under an umbrella tree.


My friend N. is the ultimate conversation starter. A few weeks ago, after gorging on BBQ left a group of people sprawled out and silent on a friend's massive deck, she decided to kick-start the chatting by asking everyone to tell the story behind their worst scars. Saturday night, as we sat on a rooftop patio, sipping wine and watching seagulls float overhead, she had another request-- everyone's worst drunken vomiting story. We heard of sleeping in ditches, passing out in toilet bowls, and, worst of all, of covering tell-tale stains the next morning with a towel during an open house. Each one had us breaking down into peals of laughter. 

My own? Involves my 19th birthday, a Monday night, a grasshopper martini, and my mother. More details available upon request...
(I'm not sure such details are really everyone's weekday morning cup of tea)


"Let's get our dumplings on!"

"It's like a meaty surprise!"


Sunday morning dim sum!

However, I'm afraid that getting one's dumplings on was nowhere near as fantastic as it may sound.

We arrived at the stated place at the stated time, supposedly to meet up with about 10 other friends for assorted tasty, ingredients unknown goods. Instead, we were met with utter chaos. A restaurant that literally seated hundreds, with families squeezed into every which corner of the lobby, and people surging towards the host. I managed to make it to the front of the line, attempting to inform the host about our reservation. I was blocked by arms and shouts from every which direction, and eventually just slammed my feet down, elbows out, with my torso literally pressed up against the host's podium, in an attempt to be noticed. 

The first woman asked me for how many. I told her I had a reservation under my friend's name. She just walked away. The next man, after another several people shouting names and numbers at him, actually started getting information from the woman directly behind me, who pointed out that I was clearly in front of him. I again told him about the reservation. He crossed it off the list, nodded, and then went on to the next person... with no effort to get me a table. Two minutes later, I ask him again. He asks me how many again. I tell him 12. He nods, and ignores me for another five minutes. I don't know if he's telling me that I need all the twelve people here this very moment, or the table is still occupied, or what. My friends are all now 20 minutes late. I hear yelling erupt in the crowd about the poor service and people butting in line. We decide to just leave, as it isn't worth this drama for a brunch we didn't even organize for people who couldn't show up on time. Of course, it is then they all arrive en masse, and it turns out that someone had already gotten a table 20 minutes ago... something the host never even bothered telling me.

Several deep breaths were had.

Several more were had when we experienced possibly the worst service on the planet. We were put in a side room where the carts didn't apparently venture, and where the waiter barked at us to hurry up and order despite having no menus. This was the same waiter who had the balls to tell us our hour late sticky pork buns were still being cooked. 

At this point, the Duke summed it up aptly in saying "I think we already know that the possibility of a tip has been completely eliminated. Now it's just a matter of how much we have to steal from them to make this entire experience worth it."


Post dim-sum, with some lovely new china in hand (kidding!), we moseyed over to the Car-Free Festival in one of the more eclectic areas of town. It was there that we were greeted by bongo drums, lemonade stands, people parading down the street declaring "You can't buy our rivers!", and the following interaction...

L: Wow, that guy dancing over there has some seriously short shorts. I mean, I pretty much can see his balls.


L: Oh God... I did just see his balls.

Me: Me too!

L: Well, he puts a new meaning to the phrase "rock out with your cock out!"


PS. Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!


Your Ill-fitting Overcoat said...

It's so rare that a movie's bad enough for the entire audience to respond so viscerally. That's hilarious. The last time (and perhaps the only time) I've seen anything like that was when I went to see Click (that awful Adam Sandler movie from a year or so ago). There's a similarly melodramatic-but-unintentionally-hilarious scene in that movie and I was laughing so hard that I almost couldn't stay in my seat. Painful to say the least.

Your Ill-fitting Overcoat said...

p.s. Questions like your friend's are great conversation-starters, but I can never think of a good answer on the spot! I get nervous and my brain just shuts off. Days later, I'll realize that I totally had an amazingly hilarious story I could have told...

Anonymous said...

I am so jealous that you're going back stage with Jack. I so totally heart him.

But I'm not so jealous of the dim-sum. I don't think I've ever had service that poor...
Although this one time I was brought my steak sandwich sans steak. Not bad service. Just really stupid!

Ant said...

Brilliant. There was a dumpling theme to every point in this post.

I want to get my dumplings on, but I'm still in crutches.

Anonymous said...

I like your weekend. Also, I miss you!

Anonymous said...

I think it was the village that made me stop caring about how 'oh so wonderful' m night shammlammadingdong is a director. :)

Deutlich said...

oy! balls in public? Would wig me out. hard.

Surfergrrl said...

I gave up on m. night after the sixth sense. I refuse to see any of his movies. i seriously can't believe hollywood keeps giving him money to make movies. He is TERRIBLE and quite full of himself.

benjibopper said...

i saw Kung Fu Panda last night and loved it. probably not as funny as the happening, but good nonetheless.

glad you had a fab weekend. weather was great here too so we had a croquet and boche ball tourney in the backyard, then went a place called chocolate lake and watched the lifeguards train. their fake injury antics were almost as funny as a bad marky mark fillem.

SMARTBuddy said...

Oh. Disapointed by The Happening review- its got a goodish trailer over here and i was set to go and watch :( even Hulk got slammed. What I am suppost to watch now?!

Peter said...

I've heard nothing but bad things about that movie.

I love how they used "M. Night Shlyafmelkfe's First R-Rated Movie" in the ads.

As if that is some kind of huge selling point.

Yoda said...

Narrow escape! Almost ended up watching Happening with J last weekend! I mean, from what you say, that movie definitely is not happening. lol.

My worst scar? on my forehead. Cause? Walking into a road sign while looking the other way.

What can I say, I like to be violent to myself.

Your Ill-fitting Overcoat said...

All of you should read the hilarious Ultra-Condensed Movie Review of The Happening!

Maxie said...

that's how dawn of the dead was... it was so bad that the audience was cracking up. I've heard a lot of people loved it, but I just found it ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

I like when they make fun of M. Night Shamalan on South Park. Good to know that movie sucked.

And yay!!! for the return of the sun!

Jess said...

I have heard similar things about that movie before. It's such a disappointment. I think part of it is the same as with many authors. The first movie, or book, has been percolating in someone's mind for so long that it is amazing down to every last detail. And then they make a name for themselves, and it's a profitable name, and they start churning out more stuff that's along the lines of their original piece, but not as good and not as original. It happens all the time. And it's sad.

Alexa said...

i have been wanting to do sunday dim sum forever!

Katelin said...

backstage passes to jack!? i'm so jealous. that will be so fun.

and i sort of wanted to see the happening but i heard that it was awful, you have reaffirmed my opinions, haha.

Anonymous said...

Backstage? With Jack Johnson? Jealous!

Yeah, I heard "The Happening" sucks. I guess after he made "Signs" (one of my favorite films), Shyamalan said, "Well, that's that."

Bayjb said...

Wow the movie is that bad? That sucks. I'll have to tell my friends about that. "if you mean it," LOL I would have laughed too.

Backstage passes? that's awesome, I can't wait to hear about it.

EF said...

Thanks for saving me the heartbreak and cashola! I was hoping it'd be a good movie, but I'll wait till dvd!

Might I say, those must be some pretty short shorts...

Dexter Colt said...

"The Happening" was definitely quite laughable in its horribleness. Bad acting, lame plot, and aimless direction. Why is M still getting budgets for movies?

Though I did LOL over the lawnmower scene. I mean, that was the only brilliant part of the movie. I'd love to see a MST3K overdub of the movie.

CC said...

I'm so jealous about Jack Johnson!! Ahh.

That dim sum place sounds really really bad. I went for dim sum for father's day and it was pretty yum for the most part :) Hope you find a new place to go to!

Nilsa S. said...

Sounds like a really wonderful weekend. The botanical gardens are gorgeous!

NamesAreHardToPick said...

I always forget to wear underwear at my gym, I'm sure people see my balls (I'll have to re-think this idea). Great pictures and I heard The Happening wasn't a good movie, but alas, I'm not a big fan of his (ever since Robot Chicken pretty much nailed it). Anyway, sounds like a fun weekened!

Nevis said...

Is the plot of "The Happening" really tree farts?

Lisa said...

DUDE. I KNEW IT!!! With a title like THE HAPPENING, how could you possibly take it seriously? I laughed out loud reading your comments on it. I can just imagine it.

Also, I want to meet Jack Johnson.

On a slightly unrelated note, have you seen The Orphanage and/or Pan's Labyrinth? J and I just recently watched them and I thought you might like them.

Therapeutic Ramblings said...

When I was at Nerd Camp our housemaster use to wear those short shorts, and then sit with his legs spread....and his twig and berries would just hang was uhm...nasty. They once got stuck on the wooden stairs because it was humid.

ps. Now I need to post that on my blog, it made me laugh, and I don't typically laugh at the sight of another man's nuts.

Abbey said...

This made my night: "I think we already know that the possibility of a tip has been completely eliminated. Now it's just a matter of how much we have to steal from them to make this entire experience worth it."

I saw the Happening as well. I guess having been very disappointed with the Village I didn't have very high expectations. It seemed like a good idea, but the climax - which I won't ruin - was like, you've got to be kidding. I really wondered if they were going with Love conquers all.

mcgee said...

i'd heard about how bad the happening was and so we decided to watch "the incredible hulk" instead. ha. it wasn't that bad though! i'm sorry you had to sit through that bomb.

also, love the photos from the botanical garden. that's exactly something i'd do on a nice day out too.