Friday, July 25, 2008

Boy, I love Steven Seagal.

A great youtube video of a Seagal Mountain Dew commercial:

This is pretty cool.

A press release I received last week:


Ottawa 21st July, 2008 – This Saturday, Ottawa director Matt West will head to Tinsel Town for the world premiere of The Funeral… Again! at the ‘Dances With Films’ Independent Film Festival in West Hollywood, California.

The quirky, short film is a sweet comedy about coming to terms with the loss. The protagonist, Charlie was 56 when he died for the first time. Otherwise a rather unexceptional man, he went on to die three more times, much to the chagrin of his wife, his friends and neighbours.

Filmed right here in the nation’s capital over three days last December by Michael A. Dobbin at Quiet Revolution Pictures, the movie features the debut screen-performances of a host of regional talent including CHEZ 106 ‘Doc and Woody’ morning show regular and movie-critic Eric (the Intern) Bollman. Now it’s Eric who will have to face the critical spotlight for his performance in the role of ‘Ed’ in the film.

The film also stars newcomers David Templin, Bruce Nicol, Mary Jane Chisholm and Barbara Gray; as well as the work of Ottawa-based crew including cinematographer Michael Tien.

This will be the festival debut of the movie, which is anticipated to make further appearances at worldwide festivals through 2008-2009.

West, who is best known for his work on popular lifestyle programming with Knight Enterprises, is thrilled to have such an exciting premiere for his first dramatic movie. “It’s pretty neat to have my first film premiere in Hollywood” says West. “I’m really proud of this film and the work we’ve done.”

West is slated to direct his first feature film in 2009 with a locally-set comedy-thriller entitled The Odds. “This will be the first theatrical feature to be made here in Ottawa by Quiet Revolution Pictures, and for that reason, I’m really excited to have the chance to work with such a talented local director” says producer Michael A. Dobbin. “I’m really looking forward to working with Matt again.” Dobbin remains tight-lipped about the much anticipated feature film, but promises an exciting announcement in the coming weeks.

Dobbin and West have worked as a creative team since their student days at Glebe Collegiate in the early 1990s. The Funeral… Again! has been their first project since Dobbin returned last year to Ottawa from the United Kingdom to start Quiet Revolution Pictures.

The curtain goes up on The Funeral… Again! at the famous Laemmle’s Theater on Sunset Boulevard, West Hollywood this Saturday at 2:45 in the afternoon. The film was chosen out of some 1,400 entries, and is the only Canadian film in competition.

Snake at the station!

In photo #1, we can see Woody keeping a cautious and frightened distance from the snake.
In photo #2, we can see the full size of this snake, "Zen", as his handler stretches him out to full length.
In photo #3, the snake has wrapped itself around me, and in photo #4, it has decided to stick it's tail up my butt a little.

The Carnivale Lune Bleue people came in this morning to tell us about their event, which sounds really cool. They are putting on a 30s-style carnival show out near Kars, with the freak shows and the feats of strength and the authentic five-star dining cuisine. And the snakes. We talked to a man who has been a carny for 60 years, and has done the sword-swallowing, the fire-eating, and whatever else the carnival brings to town. He was an advisor on the TV show Carnivale, which is the series upon which this Lune Bleue event is based. It runs throughout August here in town.
Of course, Woody has a serious fear of snakes. I have a buddy, Darryl, who has a similar fear. He decided one time to immerse himself in snakes, to conquer his fear by watching the movie Anaconda. And in watching it, he really was not scared at all when it came to the giant snakes eating people. But there's a scene when a dam explodes, and tiny baby snakes fall on the boat, and he almost cried. I thought perhaps Woody would be the same way. When it comes to giant snakes, they aren't the same as the tiny baby ones. It's like a whole different animal. But...that was not the case. He backed off, and stopped talking, and watched the snake really carefully, but to his credit he didn't freak out. I think he just sweated a bunch. And even better, he didn't let loose a string of f-bombs that could have cost us all our jobs. So, all in good fun! The snake's name is Zen, he's a Burmese Python, he weighs about 200 pounds, and he's ridiculously muscular. I could feel him squeeze a little when he was wrapped around me, and I can certainly see how these things could eat people. But it spent three hours at the station and ate nobody. Even though, when no one was looking, I secretly rubbed Randall's chair with raw chicken.
Here is a link to the youtube video of the event (listen for the hissing):

Thursday, July 24, 2008

SO close.

I golfed at the Canadian with Doc yesterday. And if I had hit the nine iron instead of the eight on the first hole, and if I hadn't hit my six-iron fat on the second hole, and if I hadn't nicked the tree chipping out of the rough on the third, and I hadn't duffed my fairway wood on the fourth, and I had remembered to lay up on the approach to the fifth, and I had turned over my three-iron on the sixth, and I had avoided the water on the seventh, and I hadn't four-putted on the eighth, and I hadn't lipped out on the ninth, and I hadn't tried to chip out of the woods six times on the tenth, and I hadn't clubbed down on the eleventh, and I had hit a proper fade on the twelfth, and I had stayed out of the rough on the thirteenth, and I had hit the green in regulation on the fourteenth, and I hadn't scored an eight on the fifteenth, and I hadn't shanked my approach to the sixteenth, and I had kept my head down on the drive on the seventeenth, and I had read the green better on the eighteenth, I would have shot five-under-par. As it stands, I had the best round of my year. And Doc says that if he reads in my blog that I beat him, he will kill me. So I won't mention it.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Doc and Woody tournament - a recap.

This year was the most smoothly-run, successful tournament we've had yet. A great time all around, and the rain let up at about the third hole, allowing the sun to come out and warm things out around the tenth. I was golfing with three great guys who were all better than I am, and they carried me the whole round. We finished at four under. And we talked to people after the round, because everyone was discussing their scores. That's what people do at golf tournaments. "Oh, we could have been fifteen under, if we hadn't had those eleven bogeys..." and so forth. There was a minus-thirteen, a minus-fourteen. The Canadian has this neat feature on their golf carts where you can observe the "leader board" and see who's ahead of you. Throughout the entire round, Doc's foursome was leading. Doc's getting to be really good at golf, and his wife is excellent as well. He was golfing with Kevin Keohane from CHEO and his young son, both of whom have wonderful golf swings. So their score could have been real. Even so, I felt that it was unseemly for Doc to be cheating on his score at his own golf tournament.

But when it comes right down to it, the scores aren't even mentioned at our event. No one cares who "wins" or "loses". We don't even have one of those obnoxious "most honest golfers" trophies or anything like that. So actually keeping score is pointless. Randall was golfing with Jeff Brown, who came back to town just for this event. Because it's just that good. And because they are both terrified of computers and anything electronic, they were keeping score the old fashioned, pencil-and-scorecard way. I have no idea how they did. I don't think they know either. Also back in town just for our event (or so she said) was Tina, the Canadian cart girl who likely makes more money at our tournament than she does the entire rest of the year. So it stands to reason she would want to do this.

Our guys are certainly capable of enjoying themselves - especially with so many girls around the course. And not just the cart girls, but our promo identical twins, our intern rock army, the girls from our sales department, and many others. Even Orleans Boat World and Sports, who provided us with boats for the hole-in-one holes, sent a lovely young girl to look after their boat. By the time we got to her hole, she had become an old pro at handling the "do you come with the boat" question - the guys in the foursome behind us asked her, and apparently - no joke - that was the fourteenth time she had heard that during the day. She told me she was thinking of wearing a shirt that said "oh, you!" Loving the Simpsons reference...speaking of Simpsons references, I'm loving the Keith Olberman show when he shows John McCain screwing up in speeches beside a photo of Grandpa Simpson with the caption "Old Man Yells At Cloud".

But I digress. Then, of course, the Carleton University cheerleaders, who were on every par three, observing the hole-in-one attempts while attempting to distract the golfers with high-flying gymnastic routines. I think that, more than anyone else, they enjoy the "do you come with the boat" kind of attention. And, it turns out, they do NOT come with the boat. And we know this, because someone actually won one! This was by far the coolest thing that has ever happened at one of our tournaments. When we got to the par-threes, the guys in my foursome were so distracted that they put their balls in the water, the sandtrap. I saw guys hitting the 110-yard shots with three-woods, because they were paying no attention whatsoever to golf. All of which made Jeff Gray's feat all the more impressive. It came really early, too. By the time my foursome got to our first par-three, the word was already out that someone had won a boat. I really wish I could have seen that, I've never seen a hole in one. But thankfully, Leon from was there. Right there, in fact, and caught the entire thing on film. (Which means there was added media pressure, and it was even more impressive.) You can see it here:

Leon is amazing like that. He seems to have an uncanny ability to pop up wherever something cool is going to happen. In my case, that means he appears whenever I'm about to hit a tree, or do my patented shot where I get all tee and no ball, and the ball just falls to the ground. In this case, it meant he was right there to catch the excitement. He's also amazing when it comes to golf - all the guys in my foursome were outdriving me by a wide margin all day, so on the tenth hole I hand Leon my club to take my drive for me because mine is useless. He grabs my club, doesn't even set his feet, walks up to the box and swings, putting the ball three feet in front of the green. On a par four. The thing must have gone 350. Ridiculous.

Then we're done, it's dinner time, and Trevor Finlay played. Great, as always. Then we auctioned off a John Mellencamp autographed guitar, which went for $1,000. And another guitar autographed by the cheerleaders, Trevor and his band, and the Doc and Woody show, which went for $500. I'm reasonably certain we could have got $1,000 for that one as well, had the four of us refrained from signing it. All in all, the tournament managed to raise $12,000, I broke in my new golf shoes, we all made some new friends, and a guy hit a hole-in-one and won a boat. It doesn't get much better than that.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

An amazing video! Greatest golf shot ever!'s just kinda neat.

This is the ball I used to sink my only putt of the day at yesterday's Doc and Woody golf tournament. Thanks to Mike Raganold, my playing partner, who uploaded the video to youtube. Check it out here: