Thursday, September 15, 2016

entertainment survey

Originally published on 10-14-07 on a private blog.

I had one of my 'split shift' nights again last night where I sleep for two hours and I'm up for three before I go back to bed.  Surveys kinda help with that.  This one was more grueling and less fun, but I guess it's all down for the record now.
The Recreation Survey!

What was the first movie you ever saw on the big screen?
  You've gotta be kidding me.  I have no idea.  I bet it was Jungle Book or Dumbo or something, at the theater in town, when there were still concession breaks halfway through the movie.  Or possibly Snow White or Sleeping Beauty.  I think Maleficent was my very first enthrallment with villains.

Did you ever see movies at the drive in? Do you remember any of them?  Nothing like being stuck in the car as a kid with a tiny little soundbox that didn't come in clearly.  Other kids got to go play or buy things to eat.  I was bored out of my skull.  I could go on about the movies I saw, but I don't recall a drive-in movie ever being really enjoyable as much as 'magical' because we so rarely did anything like that.  The magical feeling part was pretty cool.

As a child, what was your favourite movie?  That was waaaaay before rented movies were ever invented, so I saw them once and that was it.  I remember I thought Aristocats and Clint Eastwood and The Love Bug were pretty cool, but I don't think I had a fave.  I do know, though, that my fave all-time score as a child was The Sorcerer's Apprentice, second fave score was Peter and the Wolf.  We had an album collection that was pretty cool.

As a child, who was your favourite movie star?  I really really liked Dick Van Dyke.  I pretty much thought he was the bomb.

Do you own your favourite childhood movie on dvd? And do you actually watch it?  No, I feel no compulsion to build up a childhood memories library.

When you reached your teens, what was the first movie you went to on a date?  Date, haha, that's funny.  I never went on a real 'date' until after I was graduated.  I saw a movie with a gay friend when I was a senior, I think, but I can't remember what it was.

As a teen, who was your favourite movie star?  Hayley Mills, but by then movies were coming on tv regularly.  'Made for tv' movies.

As a teen, what was your favourite movie?  The original Pink Panther movie, with Peter Sellers, and Escape from Witch Mountain.

As a child or a teen was there a character in a movie you tried to be like?  I remember wanting to be like Mr. Spock, but he wasn't in a movie back then.

What are a few of your favourite movies as an adult?  Airheads, Galaxy Quest, Monsters Inc, Mystery Men, Spaceballs, A Night at the Roxbury, the Terminator series, Ghostbusters, Scrooged, Con Air, anything Star Wars or Star Trek, The Tuxedo, the POTC movies, the Austin Powers movies, etc.

Who are the actors whose movies you actively go to?  Popping a major bubble here, I am no longer an 'active' movie goer.  I see maybe one or two films a year on the silver screen any more.  Part of the problem is the sound system.  I am extremely sensitive to sound, and have had to ask management to reduce the noise level the last 3 or 4 times I've been there, as opposed to feeling my seat and chest vibrate every time there is an exposion or bit of action.  That or being sandwiched between loud crazy people who smell 'creative', for lack of a nicer word.  Now, if this had been a ~rental~ question...

What are some of the stupidest movies you have ever seen?  I assume we're still talking theater experience.  Scary Movie was idiotic in the theater.  That was one of my bad experiences being sandwiched between college boys whooping it up like imbeciles for every sex related or nude scene.  I mean, geez, guys, scream to the world how little you get in real life...

Who are some of the actors you would love to see retire?  Julia Roberts.  Sorry, Julia fans, but I honestly can't stand her.

What do you snack on at the movies?  Popcorn, if Scott is with me.  I kind of like the nachos.

Did you ever, actually, go to the movies and make out?  The closest I've ever come to 'making out' at a movie theater was when a friend of mine decided to jump into the seat next to me from the back, literally.  His big foot landed in about a gallon of Mt. Dew and soaked me.  Don't know if you can call the heated intimacy of near death at my hands 'making out' or not, but we came pretty close to being thrown out of the theater.

Have you ever left a movie while it was still running?  YES.  Good lord, there are some crappy movies out there.

Are there movies you have gone to see repeatedly?  The Tuxedo and the POTC movies, but only because I had the spare cash and the time on my hands.

What movie is currently showing or about to open that you are excited to see?  I'm excited enough to wait for the rentals, but I'm considering making Sweeney Todd a silver screen experience.

Did your parents read to you as a child?
  Sadly, yes.  My dad would read technical material to me while I doodled on throwaway papers while he did taxes or bookkeeping.  My mom would read bible stories and then quiz me.  Consequently, I now obsessively read shampoo bottles and can even pronounce all the ingredients, even in French.  Okay, okay, I'm an avid reader.

Once you were old enough, did you read on your own?  What is old enough?  I couldn't read until the second grade, when phonics swept through in all the rage.  Suddenly *bing*, I was reading anything and everything.

What books from your childhood left a lasting impression on you?  David and the Phoenix, Rudyard Kipling stories, Tunnel Through Time, Black and Blue Magic, The Room.

Do you read, now? What genre of book do you read most often?  I'm lately into biographies, and tend to go home from the library with books written by physicists and mathematicians, both fiction and nonfiction.  For a time I dug up anything I could on ghost stories, past lives, and near death experiences.  Dave Barry is also a favorite, and I love Terry Pratchet.

Do you own books or go to the library?  I own many books from the past, but have learned to rely heavily on the library system to save me thousands of dollars.

Do you have any favourite authors? What about authors whose work changed your life?  Madeleine L'Engle was probably the most life changing.  I think I've read everything she's ever written.  I also really dig Alexander Dumas.  I read The Count of Monte Cristo as a pre-teen and was just wowed.

Name some books you could or have read repeatedly.  Oddly, the Dirk Gently 'series', if you can call both of them that, by Richard Adams, the same guy who wrote the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy books.  I really like Dirk.  He's such an earnest fraud, and believes in the interconnectedness of all things.

Name some books you started but could not finish.  The Barrow.  Sorry, John.  Yes, I know this author personally.

What book are you reading right now?  I am currently on the hunt for Dress to Kill, a biography about Eddie Izzard.  I'll probably have to request a library loan from another state.

As a child, were you allowed to watch television? What did you like to watch?
  Lost in Space was a big favorite, and Star Trek.  I'll never forget the first time I saw Frankenstein on tv.

As a child, were there any shows your parents actively discouraged you from watching?  Anything and everything with even the slightest hint of sexuality (thanx, Mom) or anti-religious theme, which means I pretty much had to get pretty stubborn to see some things.  I'm not sure how or when the science fiction started showing up in my life, probably around puberty, but once it was clear I was hooked, there was no stopping me.

If you have/had children, are there any shows that you would actively discourage them from watching?  I raised my oldest daughter on David Lee Roth videos and Rocky Horror, and she turned out just fine.  But yes, there were a few things I balked at.  Like Jonathan Taylor Thomas...  The torture of raising a child.  I had enough of him to last me a lifetime.

Once you were old enough to watch something other than cartoons, what shows did you choose to watch?  Since there were only 3 public channels at the time, I was stuck watching Jack LaLanne, soap operas, game shows, and the news, so I rarely watched tv as a small child.  I do remember the original Batman series, though, which I really liked.

As an adult, what have some of your favourite shows been?  Way too many to list, but some recent ones have been Jake 2.0, Dead Like Me, Odyssey 5 (glad to see SciFi pick that one up), and very recently with the new season I'm enjoying Reaper and Carpoolers.  I was a big Farscape fan, I think that should be noted.

What shows do you watch, these days?  Eek, just answered part of that.  I also watch Stargate Atlantis and Bionic Woman.

Are there any shows you never missed an episode of, from the first to the last?  Stargate SG-1, pretty much.  Even when I did hotel desk work on late night Fridays I was able to catch most of every show, because it came on just before shift change and the hotel was usually full up by then.

Any shows that, when they went off-air, you were bothered about it, in any way?  I was really upset when The Lost Room suddenly stopped after only 3 episodes, and screamed when Odyssey 5 was suddenly dropped.  Harsh Realm, same thing.

Are there any shows you have bought or would buy on dvd?  I've got the first two seasons of Arrested Development, but other than that, I don't collect tv shows.  I also taped all the Sliders episodes, so I don't need to buy them.

Name the best tv show theme songs.  Land of the Lost.  I don't know why.  That one has stuck with me forever.  Corny, but true.  Just about anything Sid and Marty Krofft really sticks with a person.  The Kids from C.A.P.E.R. theme song was pretty cool, too.

If we opened your cd player or clicked on your ipod right now, what would we find you had recently been listening to?
  Rocky Horror soundtrack.  Hey, it's almost Halloween.

What genre of music do you, most often, listen to?  New age.

What genre of music will you never, ever, ever listen to?  Country.  Yes, they have some good songs out there, but I really can't take the mind set.

Will you tell us some of your favourite artists from the decades past?  ELO, Doobie Brothers, Dire Straits, Lovin' Spoonful.  You know, different, with their own sound, and no one else could ever copy them.

When listening to music, do you sing or dance along?  I either clean house or spaz out.

Do you own any record albums?  It's scary how many albums I own.  I own the collector's album to the Kids From C.A.P.E.R. show, the soundtrack album to The Pirate Movie, full collections of classical and baroque, at least 20 John Denver albums, the Labyrinth soundtrack, and all kinds of stuff like Ric Ocasek, Prince, Elton John, Sammy Hagar, the ORIGINAL Sons of the Pioneers, Eddie Arnold, Bonnie Guitar, Johnny Mathis, and I won't bore you with all the rest.  I think my sister owns all the Monkees albums ever made, among a variety of other things she likes.

Do you know what a spacer is?  I think spacers are to keep large stacks of albums from leaning on each other so that the ones near the back with all the weight on them don't become warped.

Who is your very favourite singer?  I have recently been enjoying Blu Cantrell, although that doesn't mean she's my all-time fave or that I favor her above others in my music collection.  I think 'favorite singer' comes and goes as my moods change around.  Like, once in awhile it's Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.  Mood swings.

Whose work as a singer leaves you completely baffled?  I don't dwell on bafflers.

Have you ever seen any famous singers live?  Scarily, I've seen KC and the Sunshine Band.  No, it did NOT rock.  I've also seen (and met) C.W. McCall and Riders in the Sky, and I've been to the Andy Williams theater one year for my birthday.  I used to watch his Christmas specials when I was very small, so that was kinda cool.  There are a few more, but you wouldn't know them.  I HAD a chance to meet the Ozark Mountain Daredevils and missed it.

Are there any famous singers you would like to see perform live?  Weird Al would be awesome.

Can you name some of your favourite songwriters/composers?  Hilary Stagg.  Dream Spiral is the most beautiful collection of pieces I've ever listened to.
Hilary had worked as a commercial diver in the North Sea, spending many, many hours underwater. He was also an avid scuba diver, so it's not surprising that Hilary's music is akin to floating in the ocean, wave after wave reflecting the spiral of life as our planet moves through the heavens. This is undoubtedly why Hilary's music is so perfect combined with the magnificent underwater footage on Starbrook's video, Real Sanctuary.
As he played and spoke about the harp, it was obvious that Hilary had tremendous respect for the instrument. "There is something about the harp that captivates not only the listener, but reaches a part of me as well that is difficult to describe or understand," explained Stagg. And when you listen to his work, it seems inconceivable that Hilary Stagg's musical journey was relatively brief. With fan mail pouring in regularly from a devoted following, many describing their healing experiences with the music, it's clear that Stagg's unique sound has a profound effect upon people no matter what their musical tastes may be.

Have you ever listened to or attended the opera?  My mom exposed me to some opera on tv and the record player when I was very young, and I was fascinated.  There are some pieces I've never seen performed but have been part of my soul since I was 4 or 5.

Do you play any musical intruments?  If not, would you like to learn any?  I no longer have any desire to play an instrument.  When I was a teenager, I begged to learn 12-string acoustic guitar, I wanted to play Flamenco and classical guitar so badly.  I got a 3/4 sized 6 string and sat in a stupid one semester guitar class in high school and didn't learn a thing.  If I had been encouraged beyond this at ALL, I probably would have majored in music in college.

Do you attend the theater where you live? 
 I have a handful of times over the years.  The best local play I ever saw was put on by one of the colleges in 'tent theater' during summer nights.

Do you like plays or musicals? Classics or contemporary?  Totally depends on the story and who is singing...  That's why I want to check out Sweeney Todd at the movies when it's released.  I also saw the Phantom of the Opera at the movies a few years ago.  Sadly, I have never seen a live performance or a theater showing of Rocky Horror.  I LOVE Bugs Bunny renditions of opera and musicals.

Name some of your favourite non musical plays.  I'm pretty sure I've seen a nonmusical play, but I'm sure not recalling any right now.

Now some of your favourite musicals.  Grease, Rocky Horror, Cats (I've never seen that, but I love the soundtrack), Little Shop of Horrors, and there are a few oldies I recall seeing in black and white as a kid but don't know the names of.  I also really like the Sammy Davis, Jr. version of Alice in Wonderland that was on tv many years ago.

Name some stage musicals that have been translated to movie musicals well.  Ok, now this is becoming a college essay exam.

Now name the ones that didn't.  I refuse to comply with the way the question is worded.  I deal with personal preferences, not critiquing.

Name the stupidest plays (musical or non) you have seen.  I have to agree with the surveyist ahead of me, Tommy is the stupidest.  That's where the Pinball Wizard song comes from, if you don't know what that is.

Do you remember the first play you ever saw?  Peter Pan with Mary Martin, I think.

Do you remember the last?  It was a rock opera called Rain, written by a college student that my daughter was performing with.  I thought they did a pretty decent job of it.

Name your favourite stage actors.  Well, so many 'regular' actors either started out as stage actors or are going back to stage acting, this is kind of a toughie.  Matthew Broderick, I guess, and David Johansen.  If you don't know who David Johansen is, he's Brad in Freejack and the cab driver in Scrooged.  I caught a snippet of a stage performance he had been in on PBS late one night many years ago and was really impressed.

Do you dress up for the theater? Do you eat during the play?  I don't go in a t-shirt, and I don't snack.  Call me old school.

Have you ever forgotten to turn your phone off and had it ring during the play?  No.

Do you have any thrilling moments from the theater that remain in your memory?  I love it when the props don't cooperate and the actors have to carry on their live performance anyway.  Like when a skull accidentally goes flying around or something.  Great times.  Mike Nelson has a really hilarious theater story in one of his books.

Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings: read the books or watch the movies?
  Ack, both of those in the same question.  Ok, big LOTR fan here, read the books in high school and a few times since.  Thought they did fabulous with the movies.  Harry Potter, yes, read all the books, and I really think it would have been better off being treated as a series, instead of cramming and deleting so much in and out of the movies.

Just before bed: television or book?  A snack and tv or the computer.  It used to be stacks of books, and I still imbibe occasionally, but it's hard to stop and sleep.  Harry Potter books are the worst for that because they're a thousand pages long.

Watch ballet or go dancing?  I haven't done either in years.

Summer day: walk in the park or lie on the beach?  Stay in my house out of the sun.

Best game show, now or then.  I kind of liked the one where the contestant had to guess who the real person was after asking questions.  "Will the REAL so-and-so please stand up?"

Do/have you read the Sunday comics? Which ones?  I was a Sunday comic devotee all my life until Calvin and Hobbes left the scene.  Now I briefly glance through now and again, but not regularly.  Pearls Before Swine is pretty cool.

Sexiest scene put on film.  Kevin Sorbo as Hercules or Kull.  Any scene.

What magazines do you read?  I catch up on magazines at the doctor's office.  Occasionally I'll find a good one, like a scientific publication, or something with really expensive food.

Best television cooking show.  Iron Chef.

Don't get any more cosmetic surgery!!  I really don't care who does what, but Cher got a little obsessed.

Best Christmas movie.  Jingle All the Way and Scrooged.

Best Stand up comic.  Eddie Izzard.

What fictional characters would you just love to have come to life so you could meet them?  I think it would be a blast to go out on a date with Tony P. from Mystery Men.  I'd love to post a better screen cap of him for you, but that is one dang hard movie to find good screen caps of, especially with just Tony P.  He's a wonderful twist on a totally funky disco henchman for the bad guy, and I love his suit in his final scene.  These pics don't do him justice.

Museums--Let me at 'em or Yawn, bore me?  Depends on the museum.  'Personal' museums are the best.

Best James Bond theme song.  I don't care.

What a pig!  I don't know the point of this one.

Best superhero in print, on tv or in the movies.  The Spleen.

Best board game.  Clue, because it was also a really cool movie.

In life: Watch or participate?  Sometimes even instigate, heh heh.