Wednesday, August 31, 2005

The Cold Hard Math...

I wish I had something funnier to post, but after seeing this on Boing Boing, I thought it needed to be spread around.

About the first section; I think that in any emergency, you have to focus on saving as many people as you can. It may not be possible to save everyone. Did social standing or race played a part in New Orleans' evacuation plans? We'll probably never know for sure, but the question will last long after the waters recede.

As for the attributed email, I shudder to think of the devastation the relief workers are seeing first hand. I've seen images of rooftops on a brown background, and reports of levees failing. I'm trying to wrap my head around it, especially the fact that I'm less than 12 hours away, typing on my computer and enjoying a soda.

Small words, I'm sure.

Mike G.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005


To everyone affected by Katrina. I hope any readers from the disaster area were able to get out in time, and that those who have family there hear from them soon.

For everyone else, here's a short list of people with a big job ahead of them. Please help them, so they can help others...

The American Red Cross

Catholic Charities

The Salvation Army

Mike G.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Blog Kryptonite...

That might be exaggerating.

If this is your first time here, welcome. If the recent logs are to be believed, the odds are good you came here in search of a buxom British model. The info is either down below this post, or in the archives to your right.

But I hope you'll leave with a small appreciation of one of my favorite artists ever. Weird Al's parodies and original music just connect with me; in this age of 'free' music, I've still gone into the store to buy all his albums.

For everyone else, I'm sorry.

Mike G.

Farewell Old Friend...

They were one of the first, but they couldn't withstand the Power of the Pod.

The company behind the Rio brand of digital audio players announced today they would stop making products under the Rio name.

Most people aren't aware that Rio released one of the first ever MP3 players, and was involved in a court case brought against them by the RIAA.

I've been a proud owner of a Rio Karma for months now. Sure, it doesn't have the style of the Ipod, but it does everything I need it to, and for about a hundred bucks. Granted, it's hard to do the silhouetted poses since my Karma's shaped differently, but I'll survive.

Mike G.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Things You Ask Yourself...

So I'm watching the A-Ha video[it should be part of the rotation; just drag the slider to the end to see the next video] and it hits me:

When the evil racers are chasing the girl and lead singer, the rest of the band doesn't even look up from their instruments. I guess they're a bit jealous of the guy, but band mates should have each other's back at least.

Mike G.

P.S. Family Guy did a mini-tribute of their own on this video.

Monday, August 22, 2005

On The Heels...

Of a fairly successful Summerslam PPV, I along with Bro. Mike will give our thoughts on the P1WAC.

As a special bonus, I'll be giving a review of a movie that really spoke to me.

Please tune in.

Mike G.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

The Dog Days of Summerslam...

Welcome all to your exclusive Summerslam Preview.

Just a reminder, this preview will also be on my blog, located at

This preview is based off the most current match listing at

WWE Champion John Cena vs. Chris Jericho

Sadly, this match has almost become a battle of Rap versus Rock and Roll. What makes it sadder is when you stop to think of the participants. John Cena is, let's face it, a white guy out of West Newbury, and Jericho's band Fozzy was originally some sort of inside joke where he and the lead singer 'Mongoose McQueen' were two different people.

As far as the storyling goes, the odds are against the anti-establishment Cena, who won't kowtow to Eric Bischoff. Jericho feels that Cena isn't worthy of being the WWE champ, based on the fact that he felt Fozzy was a better musical act.

Cena retains the belt by perservering through staggering odds, and his CD inches ever so closely to the remainder bin.

Shawn Michaels vs. Hulk Hogan

The tagline for this match is, "Immortality has its price".

This match will not be a technical showcase, but it will be an interesting look into how and why the wrestling fan reacts to things.

Hogan has been a perennial face, even in his NwO persona. HBK has been able to play both roles fairly well, his last big heel turn back during his feud with Stone Cold.

The angle with this match has been essentially this; HBK feels that Hogan's never deserved his accolades, and that he's basically coasted on what he did decades ago. Hogan's answered back that he never turned his back on the fans like Shawn did. Recent crowds [except for Montreal] have taken to cheer HBK, which is never a good thing for the writers.

Hogan has a reality show and very little wrestling ability. HBK is basically a part-timer who will still put it on the line in the ring. Non-wrestling logic says HBK wins in a walk, but Hogan still draws, even though he and Norm shop at the same hip store. HBK wins, but Hulk gets the last word.

World Heavyweight Champion Batista vs. JBL

The Animal goes up against the former Acolyte in a No Holds Barred Match for the Big Gold Belt. The first time around, Batista disqualified himself, but kept the belt, a gutless maneuver that should never be on PPV. With the NHB stipulation, there should be a clear cut winner. We've seen both of these men in brawl-type matches[JBL in an I Quit Match, Batista in the Hell in the Cell] so we know they're willing to bleed and take risks. JBL has been a good heel champ, but the fans support Batista way too much for him to lose the strap right now. Batista retains in a violent brawl.

Edge vs. Matt Hardy

In a clash of storyline, reality and worked shoots, the only thing missing from this match is a time machine, because it probably should have happened a month ago. Now we've got basically another mid-card match. Remember when Edge was on top of the WWE, complete with a title shot whenever he wanted? And remember when Matt Hardy was screwed over by his girl, best friend, and his company over something he had no control of? Some see this as WWE's big experiment into some new way of storytelling.

In this case, if there is a clean finish, it spells death for both characters. See how I contradict myself in less than a paragraph? I see possibly some sort of DQ, perhaps involving Lita. Heck, this might be a good way to bring back the Money In The Bank title shot in the storyline.

Randy Orton vs. Undertaker

And so the Rebuilding of Randy begins. The WWE seems to want to try again with young Randall, who was once pushed to the limit and even given a title reign. His shoulder has kept him out of the ring for months, except for an ill-advised RAW appearance, where even Vince McMahon commented on the fact that he's missed a few cycles of Raffysterone.

So now he's back to finish what he started, and take out the Dead Man.

Previous readers of this newsletter know that this match is a partial byproduct of what happened at the Great American Bash. Orton was to have interfered in the Hassan/Undertaker match, resulting in Batista/Hassan for the title. Instead, Hassan is working an armory somewhere.

Randy goes over, as payment for laying down for Taker at Wrestlemania and keeping his record intact. If he can stay healthy, expect for Orton to be Batista's next victim.

Eugene vs. Kurt Angle

A bitter Olympian seeks to regain his 'precious' from Wrestling's Rain Man in a no time limit match for his Gold Medal.

While Eugene has mainly been used as a comedy act, I've read that he has some real wrestling ability. This match will probably the most traditional, 'wrestling' wise. Angle, even with a neck made of Legos, can make almost anyone look good in the ring.

I see Angle cheating to win back his medal, only to find to his horror that Eugene has replaced it with one made of chocolate. Matt Striker [the fired New York Teacher] makes a surprise appearance.

Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio

Kramer vs. Kramer this isn't. Instead of a boring judge in a stuffy courtroom, Eddie and Rey have decided to hang young Dominick's custody papers above the ring and have a ladder match to decide who's best fit to take care of him. I'm wondering if there'll be some crazy district judge in the south who will think this is a good idea. I also predict that more than a few kids will ask their parents if they would face their former spouse in the squared circle for sole custody.

This whole mess is a textbook case against involving your family in an angle. Dominick is the most convincing actor here, but that's mostly because he hasn't spoken yet.

I expect the match itself to be very good though. As long as Rey wears one of his good masks and is able to keep from adjusting it, this will be a treat. Eddie has yet to defeat Rey, so expect plenty of cheating on his part. Look for Rey to attempt suicide by ladder.

I say Rey and son are reunited. But I won't rule out even more wacky soap-opera hi-jinx, like Dominick turining on Rey and becoming Eddie Jr.

United States Champion Orlando Jordan vs. Chris Benoit

In keeping with my unwavering support for Benoit, all I'll say is that he makes Jordan submit and wins the title. Thus the groundwork is laid for his eventual rise back to WWE Champion.

Matches not on the card [as of this writing] :

Intercontinental Championship [Carlito]
Women's Championship [Trish, who has worked recent house shows]
World Tag Team Championship [The Hurricane and Rosey]

Cruiserweight Championship [Nunzio]
WWE Tag Team Championship [The New New Legion of Doom]

I'd expect one of these matches on Heat before the show.

Thanks everyone for reading, and feel free to pass this along to any of your fellow wrestling fans.

Mike G.

Friday, August 19, 2005

The Churn Train...

Keeps on chugging along the tracks.

Tonight I and fellow blogger Brother Mike will be talking with Hardcore Legend and best-selling author Mick Foley, who will be talking about his new book, "Scooter".

Please tune in if you're able, 8-11pm Central. See if we can make it through the whole segment without bringing up the Hell In The Cell Match from 1998.

Also, I've gotten some feedback about the video box. I'll be changing the lineup pretty soon, and I'm looking into finding a way to mute or pause for those trapped in a cubicle farm who want to enjoy Churn without drawing attention to themselves.

Mike G.

A New Discovery...

I discovered a brand new place to eat today, and since I have a blog, I really had no choice but to tell you about it.

Since I'll probably won't be up north anytime soon, I've had to make do with the frozen version of White Castle. I know some people can't stand them, but I think they're great. I figured that would be as close as I would get to the real thing without moving.

But due to a wrong turn and my inability to read a map, I found something that might do in a pinch.

It's called Krystal, and in addition to being a fine name for a stripper or porn star, it's also a pretty good place to eat.

Apparently, it's been around since 1932, and is sort of like a southern version of White Castle. I'll grant that their menus are similar, even litigiously so. I think the fact that the two chains have mostly stayed out of each other's way has kept the lawyers at bay.

As for the food? The burgers could stand a bit more spice, but the chicken sandwiches are surprisingly good, as well as the fries. They also serve some sort of grits-egg-sausage-cheese layered parfait sort of thing for breakfast, but I'll let someone else try it.

Mike G.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Lawsuits Are Fun...

Burger King, the current masters of the bizzare marketing campaign have found themselves in a lil' legal mess.

Their current series of commercials features the band Coq Roq shilling their newest concoction, Chicken Fries.

But instead of just shaking their heads and switching the channel, the heavy metal band Slipknot decided to call their lawyer.

Many thanks to The Smoking Gun for publishing the court documents.

My biggest concern has nothing to do with the commercials or any legal action. I'm wondering what sort of drug-induced fever dream made someone think of chicken in fry form.

Mike G.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Taking a Negative...

And turning it into a positive. Please turn your attention to the following picture:

The masters of sculpture at Bowen Designs will be releasing this statue very soon. I'm an ardent supporter of these guys, having over a dozen of their mini-busts scattered across the apartment.

Anyways, the reason I'm posting this is to delve in the history behind this piece. For the non comic-book fans, this is the Scarlet Spider. While he looks remarkably similar to Spider-Man, his story is a long and unusual one.

In the over 40-year history of Spider-Man, there have been countless stories told about the web-slinger. Most good, some strange and a few downright bad. But few have raised the ire more than a tale known as:

The Clone Saga

While I'd love to run down all the details of this storyline, thankfully someone else already has. A tip of the cap to Eric Gillette for his excellent timeline.

Someone at Brandeis has taken the time to actually scan the relevant pages and post them online.

Finally, here's the Wikipedia entry on the whole thing.

To sum up, this is a good example of how you can salvage something cool from a train wreck.

Mike G.

All Videos, All the Time...

Or until I get bored, or someone gets sued.

As you can see, I've carved out some real estate on the right here to show the odd music video. I've had to play around with the size a bit, but I'm fairly happy with how it turned out. First up a collaboration between hip-hop mogul Jay-Z and modern rockers Linkin Park. Enjoy.

Mike G.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Crap, It Worked!

The video just below this post is One Thing, by Finger Eleven. I'll leave it there for a while until I figure out a place to have a rotating playlist or something. FYI, their song Slow Chemical is also used by WWE wrestler Kane.

Tip of the hat to the HotCodez folk, even as I'm wondering the legal issues involved. Oh well.

Mike G.


There was once a video playing in this space, but it's been removed while I figure out a better way to show them.

Mike G.


Just a small question before I pass out from the weekend's debauchery...[Lord of the Rings extended trilogy AND the Star Wars original trilogy]

Am I wrong, or is printer ink so expensive that I might as well buy a whole new printer with ink included?

I'm not doing professional documents here folks. Even if I go for the remanufactured/generic refills, two cartridges still almost add up to the $30-something I paid for the printer.

Should I go for Option C, and sneak into an office building every time I need a Quizno's coupon or print a story out of The Onion?

Just wondering.

Mike G.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Answered Prayers...

I know, I know.

You've all been clamoring for collectible figures based on the characters of that 1988 action movie Die Hard.

Well, your dreams of owning a 2.5 inch Bonnie Bedelia are about to come true, thanks to the folks at Palisades Toys.

Mike G.

P.S. I'll be on the air tonight. Please tune in if you're able.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


Or just someone else with the same crazy idea.

A few days ago, I helped out my favorite Canadian Linds with her contribution to the Blogathon. I was kind of stuck for something to write about, until I decided that it was a good time to ask some questions that had weighing on my mind.

I suppose you could mark it up to sheer coincidence, but check out what made it to The New York Times Opinion Page.

Oh, in case you can't access the article, hop over to Bug Me Not.

I'm glad that the topic is being raised, at least.

Mike G.

Yay! Something Happened!

So it looks like it happened this morning around 7:30 my time.

Visitor Number 10,000.

I know that's a drop in the bucket when you look at other sites, but for someone like me, it's a big deal.

I assume it means that people like to read my stuff, or that they're gluttons for punishment[it's the net, who knows].

Thanks to everyone who's ever visited, commented, or linked to Churn.

Especially Richard, Bro. Mike, Linds, The Miscom Boys, Motor Lisa and the Gals, Devin, and anyone else I might have missed.

I write for a lot of reasons. To document the random twists and turns in my life, to share stuff that I love with others who hopefully feel the same, but mostly I write because I like it. I know it's not real writing [I could never do it in school]. It's just neat knowing that your words are being launched around the world, and that some people actually like it.

Mike G.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

I Need A Nap...

Who would have thought not doing something would be so tiring. Even though I wasn't an actual participant in this year's Blogathon, I offered to pitch in for two of my good friends, Linds and Devin.

I wound up doing emergency duty for Dev when his laptop left this plane of existence, and I might have torqued off the entire foodservice industry with my post for Linds.

All in all, a good night.

As far as hits go, I may break the 10,000 barrier very shortly. Unless they're counting the times I visit, and then it's somewhere around 79. Thanks to all the visitors and especially those who come back. I'll do my best to give you a reason to find your way back here again.

Mike G.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Be Careful What You Wish For...

Well, I hope all the folks from Bracknell Forest, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Utah, and a myriad of other places enjoyed the pictures of Miss Hazell.

Thanks for visiting Churn, and I hope you come back, even when I don't upload confections like her.

Also, It looks like I'll be pitching in to help a good friend.

My pal Devin is participating in Blogathon 2005. Simply, people will pledge money to different charities, and the bloggers will make a post every 30 minutes for 24 hours straight. It combines the endurance of a marathon and the geekiness of the Internet, without the...actual running...of a marathon.

I'm not sure exactly what I'll be writing about. My biggest fear is that my post will be such a beating that people will actually de-pledge, causing Devin's charity to lose money.

And now, here's some stuff to bring Churn back onto a more familiar road...

The folks at Entertainment Earth will be offering two exclusive sets of astromech droids at the end of the year. Here's a look at the two sets:

I know it's not a smoking 18-year-old in a wet bikini, but that's what the other 98.9% of the internet is for.

Mike G.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

The Elitist Burrito...

Attention all members of Churn Nation in the Dallas area:

KERA, the local PBS station is holding a fundraiser tonight at the downtown Dallas location of Chipotle. At the very least, you'll be saving over 50% if you were buying the food and the book seperately.

Besides, anytime you can help out the folks who came up with Sesame Street...

Mike G.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

In The End...

Remember, if a cultural event doesn't inspire a T-Shirt, then it wasn't all that important to begin with. Also, it'll look great at the impending Congressional hearings.

By the way, ThinkGeek will gladly take your money in exchange for a shirt.

Mike G.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Going Default...

Unfortunately, my chosen entry for tonight's Churn was lost to the Internet ether.

While I fear the consequences, I figure it's my duty to give the Churn Nation something... Meet Miss Keeley Hazell.

Apparently she's 18 years old and becoming quite popular across the pond. You can see other mostly Safe For Work pictures [depending if you live in a Red or Blue State] here and here.

Wow, I feel just like a network executive!

Mike G.