Sunday, June 14, 2009

Love and Hate!

Well, that post title should cover it all, shouldn't it? Anyhow, Jason and SamuraiFrog did this quiz-thing, and I'm always willing to follow wherever angels tread, or something like that, so here we go:

1. Most hated food: Well, this is a no-brainer, and longtime readers can see my answer coming a mile away. So, here it is: broccoli is the purest distillation of pure evil in plant form as you will ever find on this planet.

2. Most hated person: I don't like hating people, really. There are lots of people I dislike intensely, and the word "hate" can be a useful shorthand for "Wow, that guy/lady really rubs me the wrong way", but I wouldn't go so far as to say I hate them. That said, I dunno -- Dick Cheney works. Or Newt Gingrich. Or Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Glenn Beck. Anyone who regularly appears on FOX "News".

3. Most hated job: I've never really hated any of my jobs, to be honest. For a week out of college I worked as a "helper" -- that should read "pack mule" -- for a beverage delivery company, helping to deliver beer to bars and supermarkets. That was OK, but the boss there was a complete jerkoff who didn't bother telling me after that first week that he just couldn't use me that summer after all. (It was a work "on call" type of thing; you called every night to see if you were needed the next day, or something like that. This went on for two weeks before the idiot actually told me what the actual story was. He was a goof, but I didn't dislike the actual job.)

And then there was my telesales job. Didn't really hate that job either, but it was not a good fit for me, and I'm retroactively surprised that I managed to work there a year and a half before I was canned. My office was full of nice people that I liked immensely. I will note that the reason they finally used for canning me was staggeringly bogus (they did one of those deals where they invoked a certain standard of operations that, had they applied it consistently, would have required the firing of more than half the people working there), but at that point I was fine with it. And as luck had it, two months later The Wife was offered the promotion that took us to Syracuse, so I would have left that company anyway.

4. Most hated city: Davenport, IA. What a hole!

OK, I'm kidding -- I always actually liked the Quad Cities a lot when traveling through there. Of the places I've lived, I liked Syracuse least, but we only lived there eight months, and it was over winter, so I don't think Syracuse got a proper chance to impress me, and I was able to see that it has some strong things going for it. As far as cities I've visited but not lived in, The Wife and I spent a weekend in Dallas for a business thing ten years ago, and in that time I think I literally saw everything in Dallas that I could want to see. (Well, I didn't see Southfork, so there's that.)

5. Most hated band: Guns-n-Roses. I know, they're all iconic and stuff, the metal version of the Beatles or something, but I just can't get beyond the fingernails-on-chalkboard aspect of Axl Rose's singing voice.

6. Most hated web site: Ye Gods, I have no idea. Maybe I'm not good at hating stuff? There are aspects of some sites that I dislike, mainly the "interactive" portions -- I visit Ain't It Cool News daily because I genuinely like the articles there, but the TalkBacks are just awful. And the Film Score Monthly forums are usually a good source of info for new releases of film music recordings and the occasional appreciative article about a composer I'm unfamiliar with, thus steering me in directions I'd not considered, but there are also some bizarre personalities there, and the regular burst of Jerry Goldsmith worship over there gets annoying. (Seriously -- it's like moon cycles or something. All of a sudden there will be a profusion of threads with titles like "I miss Jerry!", which I always find creepy. When did film music fans get to be on a first name basis with Goldsmith and Goldsmith alone?)

7. Most hated TV program: I've actually been more exposed to it lately, because The Daughter likes it, but I still can't get behind The Family Guy, which is nearly always unfunny crap to me. I've watched it three or more times a week for months now, and I can still count on one hand the number of times it's made me laugh. I am impressed at the breadth of pop-cultural references the show makes, but since none of them are funny, it all adds up to "Meh".

The times it made me laugh? Well, when someone was being uptight, the dog said, "Wow, it must be lonely there for you, back in the Fifties!" And at one point Peter says "You can kiss the fattest part of my ass", which is, admittedly, a line I plan to employ in real life. And there was a scene where the baby and the dog were trying to talk to each other on walkie-talkies that was really funny, even if it was a rip-off of the classic Airplane! cockpit chatter scene. ("Over!" "What?" "Roger, roger!" "Huh?")

8. Most hated British politician: Hmmm. I liked Tony Blair until he decided looked at George W. Bush's foreign policy and decided "Hey, I gotta get me some of that!" Margaret Thatcher didn't do much for me. And one can always delve into history a bit: Neville "Oh, go ahead, take Czechoslovakia! Are we good now?" Chamberlain. And how about the monarchy itself? I'm looking at you, Richard III.

9. Most hated artist: Hell, I don't know. I vaguely recall reading of an artist who poses dead house pets into bizarre poses and then photographs them; that sounds icky, but I may be misremembering and frankly I don't much feel like Googling it.

10. Most hated book: A three-way tie, between Atlas Shrugged, The Fountainhead, and Twilight. The Difference Engine also nearly makes the cut, as does The Celestine Prophecy.

11. Most hated shop: Wal-Mart, for so many reasons.

12. Most hated organization: The National Review. FOX News. Operation Rescue. The Discovery Institute. And many others like them; can't pick just one. (And always, the New England Stupid Patriots.)

13. Most hated historical event: 9-11-01, not just for the horror of the event itself but for the way it became the justification for so many further bad things.

14. Most hated sport: Spectator sport, I assume? Soccer. I cannot fathom why it's so beloved the world over.

15. Most hated piece of technology: Bluetooth receivers. I don't own one, I don't see where they are actually needed, and I detest the now-almost daily incident where I think someone's addressing me, only to see that no, they're talking into the receiver that's on the other side of their head.

Honorable mention: Twitter. I don't get the appeal, I'm sick of seeing hash-tags everywhere I hang out online now for the benefit of the Twitterfolk, I loathe reading incomprehensible whiny tweets like the idiocy that Senator Chuck Grassley issued last week. You can keep your 140-character bursts, folks; I'm going to stick with the complete sentence and the paragraph.

16. Most hated annual event: Hmmmm. April 15, maybe? Bills-at-Patriots? The lovely day in late August or early September when the Pirates lose their 82nd game of the year? And around here, the noxious thing called "Sweetest Day" annoys the hell out of me.

17. Most hated daily task: Getting up at a ridiculous hour of the morning.

18. Most hated comedian: I never liked Andrew Dice Clay or Sam Kinison.

And now the stuff I love. I have to admit, the hate stuff was much easier to write about. I don't know what that says about me... I'm not sure I want to know...

1. Most loved food: Pizza, in any form. (Sorry, New Yorkers, but your pizza is not the Platonic ideal of what pizza should be. Give it up.)

2. Most loved person: The Wife and The Daughter.

3. Most loved job: My current one. (And I'm not sucking up to management by saying that, either.)

4. Most loved city: It's still Buffalo, but man, are the local and state governments making it as hard as possible to say that. I also adore Toronto.

5. Most loved band: A tie between Van Halen and Pink Floyd. (And to answer my question of the other day, I actually like Van Halen and Van Hagar equally, believe it or not!)

6. Most loved web site: My own, of course. This seems obvious. Here it's all me, all the time. (Which probably explains why I only get about 200 hits a day.)

7. Most loved TV program: Oh, let's stick with my current obsession: Firefly, which I may well re-watch in its entirety soon.

8. Most loved movie: Oh come on, do I even need to say the words? "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...."

9. Most loved artist: John Constable, Monet, Jackson Pollock, Jack Kirby, Paul Gulacy, Jeff Smith, and more.

10. Most loved book: Again, do I even need to say the words? "One ring to rule them all...."

11. Most loved shop: Two years ago I fell in love with the new-and-used bookstores in Ithaca, NY. I still shop at Borders and Barnes&Noble, of course; most of Buffalo's beloved "indie" book and music stores are on the opposite end of town from where I live, so I get to them very rarely, I'm sorry to say. I do wish that Queen City Bookstore or Don's Atomic Comics were closer.

12. Most loved organization: Once upon a time I might have said the Buffalo Bills, but that's not really the case anymore. I like Jason's answer of the Planetary Society. PBS and Public Radio International make me happy.

13. Most loved historical event: July 4, 1776, and all the events leading up to it and the events following it that established our country.

14. Most loved sport: Football. Once upon a time this would have been baseball, but I don't love baseball that much anymore.

15. Most loved piece of technology: My laptop. Once in a while I think back to my 3.5K VIC20 and I'm taken aback by amazement.

16. Most loved annual event: The holiday season. The start of fall. The Super Bowl. Our apparent new annual tradition of watching The Lord of the Rings during Lent.

17. Most loved daily task: Getting home from work.

18. Most loved comedian: George Carlin, always. But I do love Jerry Seinfeld, too.

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