November 10, 2004


  1. . . . So make yourself useful and get out and rake 'em.
  2. Don't talk to me about the 2008 presidential race. Give it a rest.
  3. Sly, as in Stallone (Rocky) gets his own mag which is being billed as a "lifestyle magazine for men 35- 54 who are interested in fitness." It's being published by the same company that does the National Enquirer and will be sold primarily on newstands. Will it kick butt?
  4. . . . So when's his Contender reality show coming on? How long has that one been in the pipeline?
  5. Jimmy Smits (Bobby Simone) returned to NYPD Blue last week , sort of like a guardian angel, to Andy Sipowicz who's been having some problems lately. He wasn't ghostly though; he was actually in the flesh but only visible by Andy who asked if he touched him, would his hand go through him? He did and it didn't. Actually the scene was well done. And Smits joined the cast of The West Wing this week too. And before that he was on Broadway in Anna in the Tropics. So I guess he's a busy man.
  6. Nicole Kidman looks a little wild-eyed in that shot of her promoting Birth, the film she's in about her dead husband being reincarnated in a 10-year-old boy. (They're in the bath tub together.) She's got very short brown hair this time cut very much like Mia Farrows' was in Rosemary's Baby.
  7. NEW FUEL. There's a new Shell station in NE Washington, D.C. But it doesn't sell gas. It sells hydrogen. The first one of its kind in the U.S., say Shell Hydrogen and General Motors, who partnered to make it. I know they have hybrid cars now but are hydrogen cars on the road yet? A friend of mine said he'd hate to see the mushroom cloud that rises above that place if it accidentally blew up.
  8. COMPLAINT. Do you think TV Guide could make the date of the issue that appears on the front cover a little bit more noticeable? You've gotta search for it. I go crazy sometimes trying to find it. And speaking of gripes ... The address sticker used to peel off. But now it doesn't and it's larger and practically takes up the whole bottom of the cover. Is that necessary?
  9. SAD PICTURE. Of Ashlee Simpson after she jigged off the stage of Saturday Night Live a couple weeks ago when "the band played the wrong song" and you could hear Ashlee's voice on the track which led people to think she lip-syncs. Picture is courtesy of CBS News' 60 Minutes which was at the show that night doing a feature. Lesley Stahl's in the shot looking over at an upset Ashlee. News cameras are everywhere now.
  10. . . . Ah, give her a break. She's young. She didn't kill anybody, for crissakes.
  11. Comedy Central's working on another spoof-type program like The Daily Show. This time they'll tackle infotainment programs like Entertainment Tonight, Extra and Access Hollywood like the Daily Show does with politics. It would be a week-night program that mocks those shows and celebrities. I could go for that.
  12. COLIN FARRELL AS 007? That's who Pierce Brosnan, the current James Bond, thinks should get it. I beg to differ. Farrell's too young and doesn't have a sophisticated enough manner for the character. Of course, that's just my opinion.
  13. Tom Shales thinks John Kerry looks like Jay Leno's grandfather.
  14. A female friend of mine called me up crying Sunday night while watching ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The Vardon family - mother Judy and dad Larry, deaf and mute; son Lance, blind and autistic; and brother Stefan who is not disabled - got renovations to their house specially designed for their disabilities plus Stefan got a $50,000 scholarship Touching. The New York Times called the show a "softer side of reality TV."
  15. So how much did NBC pay the people at Rockefeller Plaza to use the ice skating rink on election night? They had a huge map of the U.S. drawn on it and spray painted the icey states red and blue for Republicans and Democrats, respectively. So is Democracy Plaza now dismantled? That's what NBC News called their election headquarters.
  16. They're running Toys For Tots spots on TV now and talking about the "joy of Christmas" already. Gimme a Break!
  17. RAY. Excellent portrayal of Ray Charles Robinson, his real name, by Jamie Foxx, directed by Taylor Hackford. Went through his life, his music and how he got ideas for some of his songs, his mother, his wife, his loves, his drug addiction. Foxx lip-synched (Uh Oh) to the real Ray Charles' music and boy did that music sound good: the early days of him singing like Nat "King" Cole; coming into his own, blending gospel and rhythm and blues; and finally popularizing country and western music with songs like I Can't Stop Loving You. Sounded terrific and makes you want to go out and buy an album.
  18. DIFFERENT BOOKING. I've noticed lately on CBS's Saturday Early Show that the musical acts are beginning to be more poppy and less eclectic and jazzy. That was one thing that made the show different and cutting edge, at least as far as music on TV goes. But this past weekend they had young kid singer Nicholas Jonas who seemed like he wanted to be Michael Jackson or the Jackson 5. And the week before they had Jeff Timmons, former member of boy band 98 Degrees who sang in a strained falsetto voice to a pre-recorded track. He was awful. So I'm disappointed in the Second Cup Café bookings now.
  19. CNN's Kyra Phillips of Live Now ... pronounced Soviet president Vladimir Putin's last name, PYU TIN (as in what you say when you smell something bad) instead of POOTIN. That's easy to do and it seems like it should be pronounced the first way but it ain't.
  20. Jack Valenti, former president of the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America, the organization that rates movies) is now a CNN on-air contributor who was on last week talking about the election. He just recently retired as MPAA chief and I guess it didn't take long for him land another gig. Connected, I guess.
  21. Former D.C. mayor Marion Barry, back in politics and who just won a seat representing Ward 8 on the D.C. Council, looks like Famous Amos.
  22. Tradition in the network TV news business was that every time the president changed, so did the correspondents covering him at the White House. Since there's no change this time around, does that mean the same old faces will be around for another four years too? Just wondering.
  23. Sen. Bob Kerrey looks like he got a fresh Caesar haircuit. He's the one that had the short fuse on the 9/11 Commission hearings. Always raising his voice.
  24. I hope now that the election's over that John Kerry retires that rust-colored barn coat. Make a bonfire with it or something and roast some marshmallows.
  25. Looks like Rick Sanchez of MSNBC has moved to CNN. They had him paired with Daryn Kagan last week in the morning. Cable news is a revolving door.
  26. Hanalie, dog in the neighborhood, likes to sleep in the morning. Owner Sally says it takes her about 10 minutes to get out of bed. That dog does what she wants.
  27. Edie Falco looks better in The Sopranos than she does in real life. I guess she likes that au naturel look of short-cropped hair, no makeup and sweaters and jeans when she's not on the show. She's Plain Jane-looking - not that attractive. (Now she's starring in 'night Mother on Broadway.)
  28. Did Colin Farrell really wax his legs for his role in Alexander? He's got one leg showing while on horseback in a promotional photo from the film. It does look non-hairy.
  29. Can we ever see a picture or read an article about Tom Hanks without also seeing his wife Rita Wilson? How insecure is she? It seems like they're never apart. Too clingy.
  30. Last Sunday, Meet the Press had William Safire and Maureen Dowd -- both of The New York Times -- on its roundtable segment talking with Tim Russert. I mean, do they have to have two writers/columnists from the same newspaper on to talk about the election? Couldn't they have varied it a bit and had someone one from another paper or something? No wonder these shows are accused of east coast media bias.
  31. FLY BY CREDITS. A friend of mine wonders why credits at the end of many TV shows now go fast enough to give anybody whiplash. What's the point? You can't read 'em. You never could in a million years. (I think it's contractual.)
  32. GERMY. Because of the flu vaccine shortage a Roman Catholic bishop in Burlington, Vt., is telling his priests not to allow parishioners to drink from the Communion cup or shake hands for the Sign of Peace. The ban runs through 'til Easter.
  33. Bob Hager and Fred Francis of NBC News are both retiring after careers as great newsmen. Both were on the Today show last Friday as guests and then Tom Brokaw spotlighted Hager on Nightly News.
  34. Mr. Big Stuff wants to go see That's Incredibles. I mean, The Incredibles.
  35. DAN RATHERISM. On election night, in response to adviser Joe Lockhart saying that Kerry would win all the battleground states, the CBS News anchorman said, "Don't talk to the alligator until after you cross the creek." (This,courtesy of an observant TV watcher.)
  36. STOP THE $440 MILLION STADIUM GIVEAWAY. Those are what the signs are saying in the nation's capital, trying to convince the government and Major League Baseball to move the proposed new stadium from waterfront property in Anacostia to a spot near the existing RFK Memorial Stadium. They claim it'll cost less.
  37. UH . . . (Love Is Like a) Baseball Game - The Intruders on Gamble. 1968. An early hit produced by Gamble & Huff, architects of the Philly Sound.


© Rocci Fisch/Random Thoughts

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