Heroes S3 E7, Duggars S1 E8

Surprisingly, I don’t have too much to say about last night’s episode. I’d like to know what’s up with Sylar – who’s side is he on? He obviously didn’t just blast Peter out the window, since Peter lived, so what’s he trying to pull here? I liked seeing Claire and Elle get along, sort of. It was a pretty dumb idea to put Elle on the airplane, though – what were they thinking? Maya has walked off, hopefully for good since they removed the last interesting thing about her. Hiro is about to go for a spirit journey (I mean, spirit nap). What is it about that root/dung paste that does that? I just realized that Nathan’s blonde lady friends are now fire vs. ice! And poor Matt and Daphne! I just want them to end up together because they’re adorable (even though Hiro and Daphne are adorable too…). Are Knox and Maury both dead now? And you know the producers said that if you die in season 3, you’re really dead..!

Now on to the Duggars (also posted at Media Sluts)! The title of the episode was “Trading Places, Duggar Style,” but it wasn’t, really. The promos made it sound like they really traded jurisdictions (that’s Duggar-ese for “chores”), but it was more like “boys make a mess with soup while the girls learn auto maintenance.” Plus there was a commercial at the end for Scrubbing Bubbles, starring Jim Bob, Josh, and John David. (Don’t tell me that wasn’t product placement – who holds up a bottle like that with the label facing forward and everything while they’re just talking or standing around?) I did appreciate that the producers asked Michelle a couple of the real questions that have been brought up about their jurisdictions and the amount of housework that the girls do: did she think their allocation of chores reinforced gender stereotypes, and did she think she was raising the girls to be stay-at-home moms? Michelle’s answer was awful, though: the girls like doing those chores because gender stereotypes are “innate,” and also “most” of them want, in their hearts, to be SAHMs (because it’s the only career they know of for women?!).

So, the little boys did laundry (and they were using brand-name detergent – what happened to their homemade laundry soap from last week?) while the girls put on plaid flannel shirts over their long skirts and learned to change the oil in the car. Then the boys “helped” Michelle cook green beans and Tater Tot Casserole for lunch while the girls were “stranded” 200 yards from the house and left to change a flat tire on their own. The two oldest boys were nowhere to be seen during the chore swap, except when they drove the girls out to the tire change spot in a Corvette..? (Bet Josh “borrowed” that from the used car lot.)

The Duggars’ double-standards just make me so angry. Jim Bob and Michelle kissed before they were married! Michelle wore pants! She worked outside the home (first in JB’s mom’s yogurt shop, then with JB as a real estate agent, and she even mentioned last night that she occasionally had to drive a tow truck when they ran a towing business)! Not to mention, they both got to attend public school, where Michelle was even a cheerleader!

For those of you interested in this type of fundie entertainment, TLC will be airing a special this Sunday on Purity Balls.

Some Duggar-Based Questions and Observations

TLC showed a marathon of all the Duggar shows last night (except for their first special, “14 Kids…,” and I think the latest episode of “17 Kids…” about how they save money). I think they are invading my brain now because I had a dream about them – I don’t remember what it was about, just that they were in it.

So a couple things, after re-watching some of the episodes and doing some other resarch. First of all, a question about the whole “courtship” thing. So, you pretty much don’t start building a relationship with your intended spouse until you’ve already entered into courtship (i.e. got engaged). Then at that point, you start getting to know the person and planning your lives together. Well, what if, after you get to know them, you realize that the two of you are just not going to get along for whatever reason? I’m sure engagements can be broken off (though probably not without some stigma), but would most people just go along with it, figuring that if they made it to that point, that this was surely the person god had intended you to marry? Or that this was some sort of trial and god would eventually teach you to get along and love each other?

The other thing is sort of a follow-up to my comment from last week about how surprised I was that the Duggar girls perm their hair. I thought they were really trying to be modest and plain (which is why I was also sort of surprised to see some of the older girls are wearing make-up). But after reading the Prairie Muffin Manifesto last night, it seems like the goal of these women is to look as pleasing as possible to their husbands (or their father, if they’re not married yet, I guess). I still don’t understand why a modern woman would willingly submit to those rules (because she thinks it’ll please god?), but I guess that explains the whole make-up/perm thing.

Laptop Upgrade

I’m getting a new laptop at work this afternoon, and I’m kind of excited because shortly after I got my current one three years ago, they started giving people even newer ones, so I’ve had this big clunky thing while everyone gets these sleek little laptops. Also, various things have been failing over time, to the point where I have to restart it because the mouse has stopped working, or it just freezes up or gives me the blue screen of death. And I have all this software I don’t use anymore, so it’ll be nice to start fresh.

But, the new laptops are on a different operating system, and a lot of people have had various problems with things since they started slowly upgrading everyone. And also I have a lot of specialized software for my job (web design stuff, graphics stuff, database stuff), and I’m worried about them getting everything transferred and installed on the new machine. To make things go faster, I already backed up my hard drive on my remote drive, so that’s one less thing for the desktop guy to do.

The guy should be here after lunch, so I will update later this afternoon if all goes well… Also, I’m planning on going to Target tonight, so if you have any last-minute recommendations/comments about the shoes I asked about in this post, now is your chance!

[Edit – 2:24 PM] Yay, the new computer works! And it’s fast and sleek and has a bunch of RAM! And I got a new keyboard and mouse, too. (Good, my old keyboard was full of crumbs and the keys were too noisy when I typed.) I think we got all my old software onto this one, and right now I’m working on getting everything set up the way I like. No problems with XP so far… [/Edit]

Digital Cable, Phillies, Waldo Hats

A couple weeks ago I got a card in the mail from Comcast (our cable company) saying that a few of our channels were going to become digital-only, but standard cable customers (which we are) could still access them by just getting a free digital box from them. So I called them up and ordered the box (actually 2 boxes, one for each TV), but clarified that we weren’t upgrading our service, just getting the boxes so we could continue to access the same channels we already had. They said yes, that would be the case. So the boxes arrived yesterday, and I set up the one in the living room. Then I had to call and activate it, and again confirmed with them that we hadn’t changed our service.

It took about an hour for everything to be downloaded and activated, and then I started playing around with it. We have an on-screen guide, which is pretty awesome. And then I discovered we have OnDemand! Then this morning I turned the TV on to check the weather forecast, and discovered that the channel was now BBC America?! And there’s a bunch of other new channels we never had before. So… I will be making a call to Comcast later today just to confirm that we still are paying the same thing. Hey, if it costs the same, I will gladly take the extra features! GG and I were browsing through the list of OnDemand movies (free!) yesterday and it was pretty impressive.

So the Phillies are in the World Series, which is pretty awesome I guess. I don’t know, I don’t watch sports. But the first game was last night and we had band practice during the game, so everyone was wearing their red and Phillies t-shirts, and once the game started everyone was using their cell phones and PDAs to keep the band updated on the score. I just looked it up, looks like we won!

I briefly mentioned it a couple weeks ago, but I just made about 9000 Where’s Waldo hats for people on Etsy. (Most of the work came from D, so thanks, dude.) It was pretty intense for a week or so, but the work is trickling off now. Last Friday I shipped out like five. Today I have one to send, and I have to pick up some yarn to make one more. It’s been fun, but I’ll be glad when Halloween is over and I can go back to making hats nobody wants to buy. (Though doing the pom-poms was fun, I might start incorporating them into some of my hats…)

Heroes S3 E6, Duggars S1 E7

I think this was my Twitteriest episode of Heroes yet!

  • Parkman’s bringing his turtle home!
  • Oh good, maybe another POV for Ando’s death.
  • Hey, good acting, Ando!!
    Yes, everyone called it – Hiro went back in time and set the whole thing up. We knew he couldn’t have killed Ando! I wonder when Daphne is going to find out.
  • Oh nooooo Creepo.
  • How can she say, “Your father always said…”? Until last year, she didn’t even know what he did!
    That was re: Mrs. Bennett saying that Noah always used to say “One of us, one of them.”
  • Adam Monroe’s hair is kind of shaggy after his time in the coffin, I like it.
  • What is Papa Petrelli’s power? Something mind-y.
  • …Something age-y?
  • Something life-suck-y!!!!!!
  • Wait, was that the end of Adam?! Like that?! (And we never found out who his last wife was. From the comic.)
    Seems like that was really the last of Adam, if Papa P. can suck people’s powers out, and Adam’s power was being immortal, then he’s now dead like he should have been hundreds of years ago. …And Papa Petrelli is immortal??
  • “High five, turtle.”
  • Is that sort of ironic, that he’s going to fall in love w/ a speedster and his spirit animal is a turtle?
    Poor, sweet Matt. As cute as Daphne and Hiro are, I hope she ends up with Matt like she’s supposed to. (But maybe with all this future-changing stuff, that changes, too.)
  • “This is getting kind of stalky.”
  • Hey how’d he just bring that turtle over from Africa? Didn’t he have to quarantine it or something? (Probably talked his way out of it.)
  • Ohhh Suresh why’d you have to get so kill-y?
  • Sylar time!
  • “They all look the same to me.” “That’s racist.”
  • “Hello? Mister African Isaac?”
  • Ohhhh they’re all screwed. Stupid creepy puppet guy.
    Doyle was definitely the creepiest of creeps they’ve had on this show so far. Obviously not so much for his power, as what he does with it.
  • Ohhh crud.
  • Go Claire!
  • Look inside her head, but don’t cut it open again, Peter!
  • So the Pinehurst logo is the Primatech logo x2
  • Another Peter vs. Sylar fight … reversed this time!
  • Aww, good try Fake Niki .. I mean, Tracy.
  • Aw, and Matt had been doing so well with Daphne up to that point..!
  • Don’t hug your dad he’ll suck your life!!
  • Too late.
  • OHHHH PAPA PETRELLI the ULTIMATE POWER SUCKER!
    So of his three sons (that we know of – heck, there could be more!), two have the natural ability to take others’ powers – one by seeing how they work and manipulating his own brain (with the side effect of killing his victim), and the other by just being in the proximity of other powered people. And then Arthur can collect powers by touch, leaving his victims alive (assuming their power hadn’t been keeping them alive) but powerless.

The Duggars were making me so angry, I couldn’t even Twitter about them. But now that I’ve had some time to cool off, I’ll post my thoughts (also cross-posted on Media Sluts). Last week I speculated that this week’s episode, “Cheaper by the Duggars,” would feature such money saving tips as shopping at Aldi’s and thrift stores, and getting TLC to build your house. Well, two out of three right isn’t bad! After hearing how all the kids’ shoes have fallen apart (one girl had covered the heels of her boots with duct tape!), we saw Michelle take the younger boys shoe shopping at a thrift store. There are ten boys in this family. They left with thirty pairs of shoes. Is that three new pairs per person? Whatever, they were $1/pair. We saw the older girls making laundry soap, which they’ve been doing for a year now, after getting the recipe from another family. We saw Jim Bob collecting rent from one of their commercial properties, and he showed off their biggest money maker, the cell phone tower on their property. And he proudly proclaimed he had a full signal while standing nearby. Of course we saw the shopping trip to Aldi’s, where they ignored the urine/bleach smell (at least if it’s anything like the Aldi’s by me) and bought $3000 worth of groceries in 11 shopping carts. Oh and also they were being followed by a Korean film crew, which the TLC crew was filming. They’re being featured in Korea to inspire people to have kids, I guess, since they have a low birth rate. When Jim Bob met them, he said, he told them his was a “typical American family.” Har har, Jim Bob. If that were true, why would they have chosen you out of the entire country? No, they realize you’re abnormal, that’s why your wife’s on TV in Korea. A neighbor from town, Mr. Charlie (?), set up one long row of a vegetable garden for the Duggar kids to help tend and get some veggies from. They kept saying how they loved cucumbers, but I think we know from past Duggar specials that what they really love is pickles! Finally, the most shocking revelation in the entire show: the older Duggar girls perm their hair! Hello, what about your countenances, ladies? Anyway, pretty much everything they showed seems to be in response to various comments made on TWoP and elsewhere on the internet (especially Jim Bob interviewing on what he thinks their environmental impact is, but also “how do they get their income?” and “why don’t they grown their own vegetables?”). If this trend holds, based on current TWoP discussion, we should see them doing some volunteer work in a future season of their show.

What do we think of these things?


Sigerson Morrison for Target Glitz Crystal Flats – Saw these mentioned in Lucky – they’re very pretty (I like the silver ones, too), but I just don’t go to enough fancy places, I don’t think, to justify another pair of pretty shoes…


Sigerson Morrison for Target Rocksie Jeweled Flats – also beautiful, but see above. Anyone want to start inviting me out to parties and stuff?


Modbe Wrap Sweater – Oh Mormon clothes! I kind of like this one, though (also the black one). But since I’m not sure I want to give my money to the Mormons, does anyone know where I can find a similar one?


Modbe Printed Tee – Same story here – I think the pattern is great, and I kind of like the sleeves a little longer like that, but do I want to fund the Mormons?


Xhilaration Electra Boots – My mom tried to convince me to buy these Uggs knockoffs the last time we were at Target together, and I was like, “Ugg no!” but I’ve been thinking about them … they would be kind of cute to wear out when it’s cold and yucky…

Linky Thursday – 10/16

Damselfly Pr0n: Aww, they’re sweet.

Take On Me: Literal Video Version: I love “Take On Me,” but this version is hilarious – they basically sing what is happening in the video. And the spoken part in the middle is great. “Stupid dine and ditchers! Makes me want to crumple something!”

Media Sluts: A TV/media/whatever blog run by my Twitter friend Jen that I’m now contributing to! Probably mostly Duggar stories, but I could write about any of “my” shows, so you could also expect to see stuff about Heroes, Project Runway, True Life, or any of the other freakshows on TLC. (I think Jen’s got Lost and Fringe covered…)

Heroes S3 E5, Duggars S1 E5&6

Based on my Twitters from last night…

Heroes

  • Claire would rather get sucked into a vortex than hold Sylar’s hand. Nice.
    Who’s manipulating who in the HRG/Claire/Sylar triangle? (Well, clearly they’re all trying to manipulate Claire.) Vortex guy was pretty cool, but they had to kill him off, he was too powerful. Wonder where those vortexes go, though.
  • Did Hiro just do that?! He must have a plan.
    Stab Ando, that is. The producers had said that if a character dies in season 3, they’re going to stay dead, but I just can’t believe they would kill off such a popular character so unceremoniously. I was thinking Hiro stopped time, put some fake blood or something in Ando’s shirt (maybe even went back in time to whisper in Ando’s ear that he was about to stab him, it would be fake, just go along with it and pretend to die), then restarted time and got stabby. But as someone on TWoP pointed out, Daphne is impervious to Hiro’s time-stopping, maybe while he stopped time he talked her into getting on board with the good guys.
  • Puppet Man is possibly the biggest jerk ever on this show.
    Definitely the creepiest ever. Today’s online comic was about him, and it was super creepy. And next week’s episode looks super creepy. What a creep-o.

Duggars

  • I see the Duggars have that same playhouse Jon & Kate got as a freebie.
    They didn’t pimp it out as much, though. Kate was all, “Oh, the kids just love their little house, they go in and out and play and pretend..!” Followed by a commercial for the same house.
  • Dugars have “buddies,” Bates have “partners.”
    Just one of many similarities between the families.
  • The Bates girls’ collars PWN the Duggarettes’! Check out those countenances!
    Seriously, the Bates’ costumes (because that’s what they are, costumes) make the Duggars look like heathens.
  • While I don’t understand why cousin Amy is in this particular scenario, I like that she’s the “normal person” voice on the show.
    She’s clearly on the show to promote her musical career. But she apparently announced over Facebook that the producers met her while filming this show and loved her and were like, “Where have you been?!” I do like that she’s the voice of reason and normalcy (and also appreciate that the Duggars still accept her, even with her dating and rock-music-listening).
  • Can’t wait to see some Duggar girl strapped to a male skydive instructor!
    Never happened. I think it was only Amy, Jim Bob, and Josh who actually jumped? Though Jim Bob looked very uncomfortable to be strapped to a big burly man.

Fancy Atlantic City Weekend

We just spent a very classy weekend in Atlantic City. What happened was, we heard Anthony Bourdain was going to be at Caesars on Sunday afternoon, so we thought we’d go out for that, but then GG found out Jackie Martling would be at the Marina on Saturday night, so he wanted to see that, get a hotel room, go to Bourdain the next day, and then come home. It is very expensive to get a hotel room on a Saturday night in AC! The few times we’ve done it before, we usually end up staying at some creepy place on Black Horse Pike. But GG checked Expedia and found this “boutique hotel” for less than $200 for the night, so he booked it.

So Saturday afternoon we showed up at our hotel, The Chelsea. Um, it was amazing. While we were checking in, GG mentioned that rooms at the casinos were going for $500 for the night, and apparently, that was the rate for a room at The Chelsea, too, if you were just coming in off the street that day! Not only that, but we had reserved one of their “lite” rooms, but that section of the hotel was still under construction, so we were upgraded to a “luxe” room. We took the elevator up to our room on the 17th floor, and it was so fancy! When I first walked in the door, I thought, “Hollywood Regency” (hey, that Domino magazine subscription is good for something!). Lots of graphic patterns, clean lined furniture with elegant details, and white animal sculptures (bird lamps, in our case). And the bed! We took a 2-hour nap right away.



Our hotel room

Around 6pm, we went downstairs to check out The Fifth Floor, which is where they have a night club and their restaurant, Chelsea Prime. Silly us, showed up in our jeans and without a reservation. Luckily, they were very nice to us and said because it was so early we didn’t really need a reservation. We still felt bad about being underdressed, but our waiter was so cool! He was like, “Hey, see that table over there? They’re wearing sweatpants.” (Still, 99% of people there were dressed very nicely.) The waiter was awesome about explaining everything to us, and even making suggestions like splitting the side vegetables (which we did – you ordered everything a la carte). We had the most amazing dinner. GG got a steak, which was covered with this charred salty crust – so good! I had roast organic chicken which came in the most delicious sauce. And we shared asparagus with hollandaise sauce and whipped potatoes. GG tried their signature Chelsea cocktail, which I think had vodka, vermouth, prosecco, cucumber, and mint. Then we had to get dessert – he had a bread pudding with brandy-soaked cherries, and I had the best creme brulee I’ve ever eaten, topped with this delicious pile of berries.

I could say so much more about the hotel, but instead why don’t you check out this really nice Chelsea Hotel review on HotelChatter (be sure to check out their related articles, too, they go more in-depth on the restaurants, night club, and other amenities).

After dinner, we went back to our room, got changed, and headed to the Marina to see Jackie. Our seats kind of sucked. I don’t really understand the layout of their comedy venue, The Shell, but half the seats basically are facing away from the stage because of the way their tables are set up. (And of course, we got the backwards seats.) GG’s friend Brian met us there, and it was us three plus these seven really rowdy guys sitting at the table. Basically, the audience was mostly Howard Stern fans, and as soon as Jackie came out they kept shouting “Hey now” and other Howard-related stuff. He just told dirty jokes for an hour straight, then he did “stump the chump,” where people set up a joke to see if he could finish it (he could), and he brought some women on stage to try to stump him, too, but mostly just to make uncomfortable. Even GG was surprised by what he was doing to them, and we were both glad I didn’t go up there.



Coming back to the hotel at night

When we got back to the hotel after the show, we decided to check out the night club, because one of the valet guys told us the party doesn’t get started up there until 1am, and it’s crazy. He must’ve been right, because it was about 11pm when we stopped by, and it was mostly just people hanging around. We walked through the whole area before getting back on the elevator and going up to our room. “Good Night and Good Luck” was on TV, which GG wanted to watch, but I think we both fell asleep immediately.

Sunday morning we ordered breakfast to our room – a beautiful tray of pastries and fruit with coffee and juice. We were taking our time getting ready and checking out, because we figured we’d just go straight to Caesar’s in time to see Bourdain. But then he mentioned that we could kill time at The Pier, this mall connected to Caesar’s. I hadn’t been there for ten years – since the last time I marched in the Miss America parade (which would have been 1998, since we didn’t go due to weather in 1999). It used to be this sad little mall. Now it’s a really classy mall, with pretty much the same stores we have at KoP, and a third floor with some nice restaurants. We walked the entire mall before getting lunch at the AC outpost of The Continental (there are two in Philly). GG saw this Green Submarine sandwich on the menu and knew I had to order it, since it had avocado, sprouts, and other yummy veggies. So good. GG had a burger. Then we went to check out this fountain show. Apparently this is the world’s largest indoor fountain display, and it was really awesome! The fountains, lights, and music were choreographed really well, and it was very modern and unique. I took a few pictures, but they don’t really do it justice. If you search YouTube for the fountain show at The Pier at Caesars in Atlantic City, there’s tons of videos. Probably the neatest part was that in addition to the fountains spraying up from the pool, there’s also something in the ceiling above it that sprays out water and mist.



After stopping in this giant candy store called It’Sugar (seriously, it’s like the FAO Schwartz of candy), we crossed the boardwalk back to Caesars and headed to the Circus Maximus theater. Honestly, I was a little disappointed in this show. The theater was huge, it was just not what I’d been expecting, and also it was packed! I didn’t realize there were that many Bourdain fans! 100 audience members were doing this VIP thing where after the show they would get to meet Tony and he would prepare a dinner. If I’d known how far away we were going to be, I would’ve brought my glasses, because for all I knew it could’ve been any skinny guy in a chef’s jacket up on the stage. Luckily, they had a couple cameras on him, which were being displayed on large screens behind and on either side of the stage. So he cooked a couple things (some sort of scallops with mushroom sauce, and duck a l’orange), and Carlos Llaguna (executive chef at Les Halles, Bourdain’s old restaurant) was there to assist him! That part was kind of boring, even though he did talk a little about some stuff while he cooked. The he took a few questions from the audience, which was much more interesting, even though most of the people asking questions treated it like this really formal thing, like, “Mr. Bourdain, in your book you mentioned bla bla bla, what is your opinion on bla bla bla,” that sort of thing.



As soon as the show was over, we booked it out of there, back to the car, and on the road. I slept part of the way home. We got home a little after 4pm, and the kitties had missed us! Also, they ate almost all the food I’d left out for them, which was more than I’d expected. We were only gone about 26 hours! I spent the rest of the evening doing laundry and making hats! Who would’ve guessed Waldo was such a popular Halloween costume?! Also, there was a No Reservations marathon, so I watched more Bourdain..!

More on Heroes, Duggars, and sleep

Okay I know I said on Wednesday it was too late to really discuss Monday’s TV shows, but I did want to say just one thing about DomesticSylar (besides how sad I am that he blew up! …Though he has Claire’s power, so I guess he got better..?). The way he was trying to supress his true nature reminded me of that episode of The Simpsons where Bart and Lisa use Prof. Frink’s machine to view their lives 8 years in the future, and Bart sees Mr. Smithers with a woman and was like, “I always thought you were…” and Smithers says, “Not as long as I take one of these shots every ten minutes [injects himself]. I love boobies!” I’m still extremely curious as to who Sylar’s baby mama is. I was hoping it was Claire (especially considering he’s living in their old house), but now he’s her uncle too, so that’s just gross. I was thinking that was the case because the kid’s name was Noah, but maybe Sylar just named him that because he grew to respect Noah Bennett while working with him..? Very curious as to how that whole situation came to be. And Papa Petrelli is showing up next week! Everybody’s daddy!

Also wanted to bring up a point that’s been discussed this week on TWoP about the Duggars and their notions of love. They said you wouldn’t want to date around a lot before getting married because every person you love and lose takes a little piece of your heart, so then by the time you do meet your future spouse, you can’t give them your whole heart. This means that everyone has a finite amount of love to give. If this is the case, how can they justify loving 18 (or even just two) children? Wouldn’t the first child have received all or most of the love, leaving less or none for subsequent kids? Their logic just doesn’t make sense. Besides, doesn’t god have infinite love for everyone? I thought that was part of Christianity.

I tried to get caught up on sleep yesterday – I took a 2-hour nap when I got home, and I went to bed a little earlier than I have been. Hopefully I can get some good rest tonight, as well, because we have a long (but fun!) weekend ahead of us!