I finally found sound files for last week’s funny “Jenny From the Block” South Park episode and posted them to the original entry. Listen to the songs if you have some time, they’re hilarious.

X2: X-Men United will be opening worldwide this weekend. It will open in 93 countries and territories around the world, making it the broadest opening release of all time. It promises to be better than the first X-Men movie with more action and digital effects. I am so there.

In another nail-biter game, the Lakers beat the Minnesota Timberwolves to tie their first-round series at 2-2. Kevin Garnett missed two free throws down the stretch in a choke that was reminiscent of recent performances by Scottie Pippen, the choke master. I am sure Garnett will be haunted by this loss on the plane ride home and every moment leading up to the next game. The mental repercussions of this loss for Minessota are huge, as now they realize that it’s a three game series.

Cartman and Ms. Jennifer Lopez

I accidentally deleted the latest South Park episode off TiVo, titled Lil’ Crime Stoppers. Initially, I was very very sad that I deleted the new episode, but then, lo and behold–Fat Butt and Pancake Head, last week’s episode was still in memory. I pressed play without knowing of the wonders we would see.

Here’s the summary of the episode. Cartman’s hand puppet of Jennifer Lopez becomes famous when he makes a music video at the mall called Taco Flavored Kisses. A music label sees the video and wants to pick up Cartman’s creation and decides to fire the “real” Jennifer Lopez–because they can’t have two artists named Jennifer Lopez! The “real” J’lo is so pissed that she goes with Ben Affleck to Cartman’s school to kick some ass. She manages to slap Cartman (and his hand) around a little, but while there Ben falls in love with the other Jennifer Lopez, Cartman’s hand!

Like every great South Park episode, this one was shockingly insulting, irreverent, and enthralling. It had a vicious mix of satire and commentary that bordered on character assassination and even racism, but it was funny as all hell. We were on the floor laughing our asses off.

Now we can’t stop singing parts of the Taco Flavored Kisses song–“taco taco, burrito burrito, taco taco.” Here’s the transcript of the other song, Run For The Border, that Cartman’s “new” Jennifer Lopez sang in the studio while recording an album:

Baby let’s make a run for the border
I’ve got a hunger only tacos can stop
I know exactly what i’ll order
Three tacos, two tostadas and a soda pop

I need to make a run for the border
If you pay i’ll take off my top
Do you remember what i want to order?
Three tacos, two tostadas and a soda pop
Yeah, and don’t forget the hot sauce, chulo

If I find MP3s of these songs I’ll post them here–fucking hilarious. Big ups to Matt Stone and Trey Parker for making this episode. I laughed, I cried, and I now admit, I also peed a little–thanks guys.

Update (4/30/2003): Added links to MP3s of the songs for your listening pleasure.

Update (5/7/2003): Removed MP3s of the songs because of the crazy amount of downloads–I can’t afford the bandwidth. You can still get the songs in .wav format at www.southparkstudios.com.

Remember the stash of cash that was found in Iraq earlier this week? Apparently, U.S. soldiers tried to hide about $13 million of the $750 million in unmarked hundred dollar bills. Damn, I can’t blame these guys–I don’t know if I’d be able to contain myself either.

I just saw a parody of Saddam Hussein based on The Real Slim Shady song. It’s funny as hell, especially if you know the lyrics to the Eminem song. Big ups to Memepool for publishing the link. Saddam’s voice seem a little overmodulated, but all in all it’s very good. Be sure to check it out when you have some time.

A USGS study stated today that there is a 62 percent chance that San Francisco could have a major earthquake between now and 2032. The study cites that the major quake would have a magnitude of 6.7 or greater. I’d rather shake and chill here in San Francisco than shake and bake in Los Angeles. It’s too damn hot down there.

Yeah, you guessed it, home. Unfortunately, Bay Area home prices are still going up and have reached a record high of $419k. That’s crazy! Damn, I thought that shortly after the dot-com bubble burst that the prices would drop immediately. Here we are, three years later, and the prices are still rising!

U.S. soldiers have found $656 million in hundred dollar bills behind a false wall in Baghdad. Damn! I got excited once when I had a $21,000 cashier’s check in my hands once (from a settlement), I can only imagine what $656 million in tightly wrapped hundred dollar bills looks like. The U.S. Secret Service is going to verify the validity of the bills before they try and figure out where they came from. I don’t know where they came from, but I bet I know where they’re going–into the pockets of our troops. Hell, it may have been $700 million before they got there! Those large mountains of cash will shrink bigtime, don’t doubt it–whether the bills are real or not.

Company earnings are down at a lot of industry bellwethers and the economy is not completely back on track yet. However, CEOs are still getting paid. In the last year, median CEO compensation and bonuses still went up. Shareholders are outraged and want to stop the CEOs from getting phat rich while investors get screwed.

Online ads are making a big comeback, according to Newsweek. Even McDonalds has said that they are cutting back TV ads and investing more money on online advertising. This is great news for companies that depend on online ads, like Yahoo, one of my clients.

The Lakers have to be the strongest 5th seeded team in NBA Playoffs history. The force is strong with them. I believe they will win this series against Kevin Garnett and the Timberwolves, and every subsequent series on their way to a fourth straight championship. Today, the Lakers led throughout the entire first game in an awesome display of talent, strength, and poise–I predict a quick first round. Bottom line, don’t bet against the purple and gold.

Stephon Marbury banked a three-pointer at the buzzer in overtime to rob Tim Duncan and the Spurs of a win today in the opening game of the Suns-Spurs playoffs series. After getting the rebound off a missed free throw with just 5.1 seconds left, Marbury drove the ball to his three-point line, jumped, and shot the ball with .2 seconds left on the clock–amazing. Tim Duncan take note, you are a choker and Marbury is a baller–deal with it. The Phoenix Suns are not your average 8th seeded team. I think that they have a good shot of knocking off the 1st place Spurs.

The Gumball Rally, a Cannonball Run styled race with European roots, had its West Coast debut this week. The race is now in its fifth year, and is synonymous with billionaires, supermodels, rock stars and eccentrics. Last night, some of the sweetest exotic cars in the world blew out of San Francisco on their way to a Miami finish line. The race started at a crazy penthouse party in the Fairmont Hotel at 8:00PM. Shortly after the start of the race, 911 calls started pouring in about racers exceeding 100MPH and weaving in and out of traffic on city streets and on I-80. Apparently part of the race is to get across America without being arrested. Here are some pictures of last year’s New York to Los Angeles race.

It seems that after years of denial, the producers of Friends will finally admit that black people do live in Manhattan. A black actress named Aisha Tyler will become a regular character on the show this season. Great, that only took what, nine years. Could the wheels of progress move any slower!? Screw ’em, I was done with this unrealistic show three years ago. Besides, the best NBC comedy is Scrubs.

Martin Luther King, Jr. was an inspiration to millions around the world, but Rodney King just made people riot. Let’s face it, Rodney King is an idiot. Don’t get me wrong, he didn’t deserve to get his ass kicked by the LAPD. However, some would argue that he needs an ass-kicking now more than ever. Yesterday, he was driving in his SUV at high-speeds and the proceeded to crash into a pole, a fence, and somebody’s house! All this while intoxicated! You would think that a guy that got a nearly $4 million dollar settlement from the city would have gotten his life together–some therapy, maybe an education, a career, a volunteer job, or well, something. Instead, his hobby appears to be driving at high-speeds while drunk. Some people never learn.

Click to Vote

Who do you think will win the NBA Finals? I promise that even though I bleed purple and gold, I will not ban you from the site for answering anything but the Lakers. Promise. Really!

We’ve finally purchased tickets for the movies that we will watch during the 46th Annual San Francisco Film Festival. We will be watching a record of 14 films this year, up from 9 last year. This is a lot of films to watch in a two-week period, but somebody’s got to do it. Anyway, here’s our list of films (in chronological order):

Angela (Italy, 2002)
So Close (Hong Kong, 2002)
Cabin Fever (USA, 2002)
All Hell Let Loose (Sweden, 2002)
Last Scene (Japan/South Korea, 2003)
Nada + (Cuba/Spain/France/Italy, 2001)
Nothing to Lose (Hong Kong/Thailand/Singapore, 2002)
Double Vision (Taiwan, 2002)
Piedras (Spain, 2002)
The Eye (Hong Kong/Thailand/UK, 2002)
The Sea Watches (Japan, 2002)
We Are The Music (Cuba, 1964)
Respiro (Italy/France, 2002)
Comandante (USA/Spain, 2003)

It is only fitting that Comandante be the last movie on our list, like icing on the cake. Comandante is Oliver Stone’s intimate portrait about Fidel Castro. Stone shot over thirty hours of documentary footage over three days and condensed it down to 90 amazing minutes. I can’t wait–this should be very interesting.

Well, we put off doing our taxes until the last minute this year because we’ve been busy as hell with school, work, and the lawsuit. The cool thing is that we were eligible for a lot of tax credit because of the money we’ve spent on school–that’s nice. Anyway, now that we’re all done with them we can breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy ourselves.

An unidentified gunman fired a semi-automatic pistol into a motorcade of five cars that included celebrated rap artist Snoop Dogg early Friday morning. Snoop was unscathed in the incident, and it is unclear if he was indeed the intended target of the shots. One of Snoop’s bodyguards was grazed by a bullet and injured in the incident. I would be pissed if we lost Snoop to some crazy shit–Biggie, Pac, and Jam Master Jay are enough.

Current Technologies, a Maryland startup, has piloted a system to deliver broadband Internet access to households using power lines. People have been talking about doing this since Nortel announced it possible in October of 1997. Of course, it wasn’t really possible then! If it had been possible, you would be using a power outlet to access the Internet right now. This is the Holy Grail of telecommunications! He who figures out how to do this on a large scale will own the world.

“But they can’t fade South Central, where bustin’ a cap is fundamental…”
–Ice Cube, Steady Mobbin’ (1991)

The L.A. City Council voted unanimously today to get rid of the “South Central” moniker when referring to what they will now call “South Los Angeles.” The new name was adopted to help the section of the city overcome an image of drugs, gangs and poverty.

Ironically, South Central doesn’t appear on any city documents or even street signs, so the cost of the change will be minimal. The South Central name is only referenced in a few city maps that label the 16 square mile area South of downtown L.A. bordered by the Santa Monica (I-10) Freeway in the North, the Harbor (I-110) Freeway on the West, the Century (I-105) Freeway in the South, Long Beach (I-710) in the East and contains Central Avenue, hence the name.

In recent decades, the name was expanded by the media and the public, and later West Coast rap artists, to include any areas where blacks settled as they moved south and west of downtown, from the gang-infested streets of Watts to the $500,000 homes of lawyers and doctors in Baldwin Hills. Rappers like N.W.A. later extended the name to include Compton.

Hopefully this name change will help change the the neighborhood’s reputation for being a center for gang activity. Having grown up in Long Beach, I can tell you that gang activity can be found anywhere in Los Angeles County, not just South Central.

I want to take a time out and give props to Yahoo! The dot-com boom and bust came and went, but the company has held steady to its cultural roots. Here are some of the perks that the employees still enjoy: free specialty coffee stands throughout campus–as good as Starbucks for free; game rooms with foosball tables, pool tables, and air hockey–all free; an awesome cafeteria called Eat at URLs that boasts an awesome variety of food, great prices, and free copies of the Wall Street Journal; hit movies are regularly screened on campus–today it’s Chicago; and the list goes on and on, not to mention the permanent name prestige on the resume. It’s an informal atmosphere that makes you feel warm and fuzzy, like you are still safely nestled within the cozy Internet Bubble. Yet with all of these things the company is still making a quarter million dollars per quarter. The Internet legend does indeed continue, at least here anyway.

I am sitting here watching the Lakers beat the crap out of the Dallas Mavs, again. The Lakers’ bench is playing like they are men possessed and the whole team’s defense in the fourth quarter has been phenomenal. It looks like they are already stepping up their games in preparation for the playoffs.

I am so proud of these guys right now–Devean George, Rick Fox, Robert Horry, Derek Fisher, and even Jannero Pargo stepped up their games today. Shaq and Kobe were not the top scorers today, as if almost to prove a point.

There’s nothing like beating the Mavs, the team with the best record in the Western Conference, yet again. The Lakers extend their home streak against the Mavs to 25 straight–that’s unheard of. Mark Cuban, take note–your team won’t win a championship this year.

April Winchell keeps a collection of multimedia that can be best described as a scary music museum. The categories she includes are TV Stars Who Insist on Singing, Abba Covers in Hindi, Roger’s Track of the Week: Library of Excretia (a lot of Burt Ward songs here), German Covers, Beatles Covers, Stairway to Heaven Covers, Terrifying Christian Recordings, and a bunch of other bizarre music and sounds. Definitely worth checking out when you get a chance. My favorite is William Shatner’s rendition of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.

Canon released its new digital SLR a few weeks ago with very little fanfare. In fact, I just found out about it today. The new 10D model improves on the D60 tremendously, offering a much inproved Auto Focus (AF) system and reducing shutter release and viewfinder blackout lag times.

Unfortunately, this camera still has a 1.6x field of view crop (i.e. focal length multiplier). If you want a one-to-one focal length ratio you’ll still have to shell out $8,000 for the 1Ds–that’s crazy. The 10D is a bargain at $1,500, and at that price point I am now seriously considering picking one up.

Yesterday we did the Hawk Hill ride again. A couple of homies from work–Chad and Curt–joined Owen and I on what is becoming a weekly event. This time, we changed up the ride by taking the fire road down instead of taking the hairy one-way paved road on the other side. It was nice to show my bike a little dirt–it’s been a while. I’d forgotten that mountainbiking is all about the dirt!

Anyway, today I rode with Owen and Gary Fracchia all the way to Pacifica. Yeah, that’s not a typo–from Golden Gate Park to Pacifica. We estimated that the ride was 18 miles each way, but don’t let the distance fool you. The big-ass mountain between San Francisco and Pacifica makes it harder than your average 35-mile ride. No dirt, just distance and a big-ass hill. I was way too tired after the ride to hit up Golden Gate golf course in the afternoon with Willem.

All in all–it was a pretty sweet weekend. My butt hurts, but I am definitely getting back in shape.

Saddam Hussein was shown on Iraqi TV walking through crowds in the streets of Baghdad, proving that he’s still alive. Saddam was reported to have said (translated), “Yo, I’m alive and out hea representin’ fo’ shizzle. Let’s give mad props to ma dog, the farmer that shot down a copter with a raggedy-ass old bazooka. Much love, dog.”

The White House released this statement, “We still don’t know if Saddam is alive or dead, despite today’s tape–perhaps a music video would change our minds.”

A Washington Post reporter added that weeks before the war Saddam Hussein grabbed a microphone and proceeded to diss every major-label MC in a freestyle that left those present flabbergasted. “I didn’t know Saddam could rhyme at all,” declared the reporter. “He’s got mad skills, no doubt. It will be interesting to see if he makes a music video to silence his critics. Stay tuned.”

Does anybody else remember this guy? I grew up in Los Angeles and this guy’s infomercial ran in the early hours of the morning. In the early nineties, I worked a swing-graveyard alternating shift at an alarm company, so I had the opportunity to watch TV at very odd hours. The premise for the infomercial was simple:

Tommy Vu was a short, slightly over-weight Korean man with a heavy accent that had appointed himself the master of his own universe. The infomercial would start with Tommy in front of a mansion with two super-fine scantilly clad hoes. He’d point to the mansion and say, “this is ma house.” He’d point at the hoes and say, “these are ma girls.” Then he’d say, “you want be rich like me, I tell you how.”

Tommy would then walk a few steps revealing some luxury cars in the front of the mansion–a Porsche, a Ferrari, and a Lamborghini. With one hoe on each arm and would say, “these are ma cars, I show you to get some like them, you could be rich like me!” Then without missing a beat, a phone number would flash on the screen and he would yell and point into the camera like a drill sergeant,

“If you don’t buy ma video, you deserve to be broke!!!”

It was a crazy. No information on how he made the money or anything–just straight ghetto frontin’ (bragging) followed by him yelling at you. It was like a train wreck, loud and scary, but you just couldn’t look away. The commercial proceeded to show Tommy on his Yacht, later on his private plane, chillin’ on a golf course, in Vegas–anyway, you get the picture.

It would be many years later that I would find out that he was peddling a really bad real estate video and a seminar if you dared to call the number on the screen. The commercials were so ghetto and so entertaining that they were even parodied on the skit show, “In Living Color.”

Sure, there were many rumors that the luxury items on the video were rented for show, that he was bankrupt when he made the first video, that the video and seminar weren’t worth squat, and so on. Many, including myself, saw him as an opportunistic con man. But one thing is for sure, he made a lot of people laugh their asses off in the middle of the night.

Thirty years ago today, the first cell phone call was made by a Motorola researcher on the streets of Manhattan to demo the technology. The reasearcher called Joel Engel, the head of Bell Labs during that historic call. I wonder if he’s the one that started the whole “I need to talk as loud as I can into my cell phone” thing. Anyway, what I find amazing is that the roots of mobile phones can be traced back to car phones that were introduced in the 1940’s! You’d think that things would be more advanced for 60-year-old technology.

Yahoo! Headquarters

Okay, so check this out. I went to Yahoo! today to work on a project for work and was a little surprised to see that it still hadn’t lost its culture. The purple and yellow cubes are still there. I was immediately reminded of the bottled pre-bubble-burst naive optimism that every dot-com used to ooze from its pores. Yahoo! alas is no longer a little snot-nosed kid, it’s transforming itself into a mature organization. Sure, the foosball tables and the free soft drinks are all there, but things are a little different. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a dot-com, but it seems to be much more now.

So, I am sitting in the cafeteria with Kevin and Chad talking about our work there, when we see Jerry Yang walking across the floor. Funny, he didn’t seem to be any smarter than anyone else in the room. Actually, deep inside he probably knows that he got lucky, very lucky. Either way it was weird to be four feet from a guy that is a billionaire of the “new economy.” He’s a celebrity for geeks everywhere, for better or for worse. I wanted to talk to him, but I was with some of my work peeps. Maybe next time I’ll be able to give him a quick hello, from one optimistic geek to another.

The Microsoft employee that was charged with stealing over $9 million from the company last December was found dead from drinking anti-freeze. Exactly how this happened is still a mystery, since there were no witnesses to his death. Damn, I knew Microsoft was ruthless, but I never thought that they would resort to taking someone out. I guess that’ll teach him to steal from Bill Gates.

SonicBlue, the company that made the ReplayTV digital video recorder filed for chapter 11 and is going to auction off its business units. Why? Mofos just couldn’t hang with TiVo–I love my Tivo.