Monday, December 21, 2009

Brittany Murphy dead at 32.

Cardiac arrest?! At 32?

This is just sad. has a nice write up about her.

While she had some big struggles in her life and career lately, "CLUELESS" will always remain one of my favorite quotable flicks.

"Why should I listen to you, anyway? You're a virgin who can't drive."
"That was way harsh, Tai."

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Did anyone see AVATAR?

I read it's going to make 70 million this weekend.

Of course I will have to see it but for some reason I'm not really excited to.

I loved James Cameron's earlier movies but did not like TITANIC. I appreciated the special effects but was not emotionally engaged.

I saw the movie with my sister at the Willowbrook Mall theaters in Jersey. At one point I remember looking at my watch and wondering when was the freaking ship going to go down.

I hear the effects in AVATAR are mind blowing but the narrative is lame. The movie is also long, 2 hours and 40 minutes. I have no patience for long special effects movies without a good plot.

Speaking of movies, I finally saw TROPIC THUNDER. Robert Downey Jr. was priceless. "Just because it's a theme song, don't make it not true."

Friday, December 18, 2009

Flashback Friday – Santa, Gennaro Gattuso & Francesco Totti

This year's holiday ads feature only Totti as he transformed into Babbo Natale (Father Christmas).

The commercial below always puts a smile on my face. Hello, you've got Santa and two well-dressed men looking fioooooone!

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

"If Madonna can still bust a move at 51, I can make through this class."

I was thinking that last night.

Our Capoeira instructor has returned to Brazil for the holidays. He will be gone for a few months.

My friend who told me about the class, was our new instructor. He's been studying for a while.

Unlike our other classes, we did a pretty hard core warm up. My poor arms. Then I thought about Madonna.

Okay, I do realize it's her job. She has a personal trainer, a chef and has been a dancer for years. However, she did motivate me.

She looks great in the "Celebration" video. Love the Louboutin boots. I can't believe Lourdes is a teenager. She's in the video at the 3:16 doing the flip.

The video was directed by Jonas Akerlund. The way it's edited is very cool. I'm a big fan of Akerlund's work (Prodigy, U2, etc.) and love the videos he did for Madonna in the past including, "Ray of Light" and "Jump".

I have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that this woman is in her 50s. It seem like only yesterday I heard "Everybody" for the first time. Actually it wasn't yesterday. It was in 1983!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Ouch. Silvio Berlusconi is hit upside the head.

The leader of the far right party, Lega Nord, said it was an act of terrorism.

Okay, the man who was arrested on the spot has a history of mental problems. So until there is a link between him and a terrorist organization, it's a little early for such talk.

I wonder how heavy was the Duomo souvenir? The PM had his nose and several teeth broken.

I can't imagine getting hit in the face that hard.

Former President Bush was lucky he only had to deal with a soft shoe.

Here is more from the Financial Times. I agree with the article that this incident is only going to add fuel to the "poisonous political" atmosphere.

One thing that surprises me as an American is how much less security there is surrounding European leaders. Do people in France, England, Italy, etc. have to go through metal detectors when their leaders are giving a speech or going to an event? I mean we even have metal detectors in many of our city schools.

When Clinton was president, a friend and I went to the NCAA basketball semi-finals in Dallas. Arkansas was playing and President Clinton attended the game. We had to arrive extra early (driving in from Austin where we were working at the time) because of the extra security. The entire stadium had to go through detectors.

True Berlusconi was speaking to a rally of his own supports but it was still a public event. Anyone could have walked into the piazza. Later he was signing autographs when he was attacked.

I assume his security will be beefed up.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Sade's new single "Soldier Of Love" - LOVE IT

Sade's new album drops February 10th. After 10 years she is back.

Cannot wait. When I was younger I thought she was a little too "easy listening". As I got older I really started to appreciate her lyrics and the musicianship of her band.

Especially now with more and more female singers doing little than trying to sell sex, there's something refreshing about a singer like Sade.

She is sexy. She doesn't have to shake her butt to get you to buy her music. The talent stands on it's own.

This single is the bomb. Sade turn 50 this year and is BRINGING IT.

Listen to the song with good headphones if possible. The track surprised me. I was expecting something else. Love the drums. When the back-up voices kick in as she says "I'm a soldier!" , I get chills.

I hope it can cut through the clutter and become a hit. I think it's uptempo enough but you never know.

I'm down on the whole love thing right now but these are some deep lyrics (and very optimistic). I needed to hear this song.

I've lost the use of my heart
But I'm still alive
Still lookin for the life
The endless pool on the other side
It's a wild wild west
I'm doin my best

I'm at the borderline of my faith
I'm at the hinterland of my devotion
In the frontline of this battle of mine
But I'm still alive

I'm a soldier of love
Every day and night
I'm soldier of love
All the days of my life

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

My own Top Chef challenge: Homemade Chicken Stock

The Foster's Market Cookbook is one of my go-to books.

I was at the farmer's market and noticed how incredible the vegetables looked. I wanted to try Foster's Roasted Red Pepper and Eggplant soup recipe.

The problem? Like most soups I needed chicken stock/broth. In L.A. I used to make soups all the time and just bought stock from Trader Joe's.

Yes, I did hear that homemade stock makes a difference but for some reason I had it in my head stock was hard to make.

Well living in Rome I couldn't find canned stock so I had to make it.

Inspired by a post from the lovely Michelle at Bleeding Espresso, I bit the bullet.

Folks I've seen the light. Just like with marinara sauce, I will make my own for now on. It was easy and I could absolutely taste the difference.

Here's a basic simple recipe from The Unemployed Cook Blog.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Flashback Friday – Jackson 5 "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town"

I'm still having a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that Christmas is this month.

I loved this version as a kid. I didn't know back then because Katherine Jackson is a Jehovah Witness, the kids did not get to celebrate Christmas. It was later in life via Elizabeth Taylor (random!) that Michael Jackson celebrated the holiday.

Hope everyone has a great weekend.

It's a "ponte/bride" weekend in Italy. Tuesday is a holiday so a lot of people are taking Monday off.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

randomissimo - Tiger, Desperate Housewives, men

I think Tiger Woods needs a new publicist stat.

Why is the Susan character on Desperate Housewives so annoying? I wish she was killed off last season.

What cocktail should I make for the Mad Men Season Three premiere (In Italy) December 13th?

Why do people in America keep asking me if I've met a man yet? How many times must I tell them "Under A Tuscan Sun" is fiction!

Speaking of men, I'm done. I need to focus on work. I really can't get distracted. Clearly there's something wrong with me and I no longer need/want to make a fool out of myself. If shit hasn't worked out by this never will. It's some kind of fucked karma that I'm writing a romantic comedy and have nothing positive to draw from. Nothing. That is not normal. Everyone says write what you know. Trust, nobody wants to see that movie.

I can relate to this clip minus the having sex with Jon Bon Jovi. Oh yeah and the therapy part. I was one of maybe two people I knew in Hollywood not in therapy. Perhaps I should have been.