Tag Archives: comedy

Thank You, Jon Stewart

. . . for being the voice of reason in times of chaos.  You know $hit’s hit the fan, when the best news commentator in a country is in fact — a comedian.  Playground politicians are frustrating enough.  Turning on a “proper” newscast, only to find party propaganda or the ratings equivalent to flashing a little cleavage, is just downright infuriating.  And so, I turn to you, Jon Stewart, for the *only* sane perspective on this Shutstorm – because clearly, farcical is what we’ve come to.

On a lighter, more inspirational note, check out Jon’s interview with Malala Yousafza, a 16 year old who was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for her work in reviving education in Pakistan.  Her vision, passion and courage will give you goosebumps!

 

And by the way, this is my *last* week in a YEAR OF GRATITUDE . . . and incidentally, the year that led me back home.  Next chapter?  I’m taking suggestions . . .

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SNL Digital Shorts

I’ve been channeling a lot of gratitude toward Midtown these days.  After a cheers blog for SNL, I’m feeling a separate one all together for the SNL Digital Shorts.  They made my morning today.

Most of my SNL-viewing has been on Netflix, and for some reason the shorts aren’t licensed on this platform.  But after reading this article from Yahoo! (reprinted at the end of this blog, featuring the latest addition to the reel of genius, YOLO), I went for a twirl on YouTube.

Many giggles ensued 😉

 

You know how in multiplication, two negatives make a positive? Michael Bolton x Pirates of the Caribbean = Pure Goodness

CLASSIC Lonely Island …

This one’s pretty hardcore, beware:

So many things to throw on the ground. Speak truth, Andy.

The FACES!

Yahoo!’s TV column recently published article:

‘Saturday Night Live’ digital short ‘YOLO’ tops the charts
By Kelly Woo | Yahoo! TV – 18 hours ago

Guess “Saturday Night Live” was getting a little lonely.

It’s been over eight months since Andy Samberg left “SNL” and the Lonely Island debuted a digital short. But last weekend, not only did Samberg pop up for a cameo, but he, Akiva Schaffer, and Jorma Taccone presented a brand-new short, “YOLO,” to everyone’s surprise and delight.

The music video, which also starred host Adam Levine and musical guest Kendrick Lamar, tweaked the “You Only Live Once” catchphrase, turning it into a cautionary anthem instead. The song became an instant hit, shooting to the top of the iTunes Top 10 Comedy Songs chart and racking up nearly 3.5 million views on YouTube.

Lonely Island is well-used to the megasuccess of the videos. One of their earliest shorts, 2005’s “Lazy Sunday,” was a runaway viral video success that some even credit with the sale of YouTube. The next year, “D— in a Box,” starring Justin Timberlake, received more than 28 million views and won a Creative Arts Emmy.

The last short, aired on Samberg’s final show, was the sequel “Lazy Sunday 2,” which was one of Hulu’s top 5 most-watched clips of 2012.

But despite Lonely Island’s absence, “SNL” hasn’t suffered greatly ratings-wise, delivering average to above-average ratings this season, according to TV by the Numbers. And the show has featured other equally hilarious non-Island digital shorts, like “Lincoln” with Louis C.K.

Meanwhile, Lonely Island’s been working on tracks for an upcoming album, on which “YOLO” will be included. It’s possible we’ll see more of their digital shorts on “SNL” as they prep and promote the album.

So Lonely Island wins, “SNL” wins, and the audience definitely wins.

Gracias, SNL

Oh SNL!  How many hours of delight have you provided me?  With your Coneheads, your Churchlady, your Coffee Talk, your Cowbell, your Dick in a Box . . .

Dare I say, Saturday Night Live is America’s greatest contribution to the world of comedy.  Yes.  I dareth.

File_SNL_Original_Cast phil

Although it’s not easy to catch clips of SNL on youtube (NBC are kinda sticklers about their product), you can watch clips and episodes on the official website here.

Thank you, SNL, for an afternoon of giggles, mock news and pop culture refreshment.  Now if only I could get my hands on some tickets . . .

 

List of cast members (pretty damn impressive)

As of September 2012, the show has featured 132 cast members. The list below includes both featured and repertory players, but omits SNL writers and others who weren’t listed as cast members during the show’s credits. The dates given are those of the years they were on the show. Also noted on the chart is whether the cast member ever served as an episode’s host, appeared as the anchor of the “Weekend Update” segment (under any of its titles), or has been the subject of their own “Best Of” home video collection.

Performer
(d) denotes deceased
Years Active Featured Player ONLY Repertory Player Weekend Update Anchor Hosted Best Of
George Coe 1975 Green tick
Michael O’Donoghue (d) 1975 Green tick
Chevy Chase 19751976 Green tick Green tick Green tick Green tick
Dan Aykroyd 19751979 Green tick Green tick Green tick Green tick
John Belushi (d) 19751979 Green tick Green tick
Jane Curtin 19751980 Green tick Green tick
Garrett Morris 19751980 Green tick
Laraine Newman 19751980 Green tick
Gilda Radner (d) 19751980 Green tick Green tick
Tom Davis (d) 19771980 Green tick
Bill Murray 19771980 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Al Franken 19771980
1985–1986
19881995
Green tick
Peter Aykroyd 1979–1980 Green tick
Jim Downey 1979–1980 Green tick
Tom Schiller 1979–1980 Green tick
Paul Shaffer 1979–1980 Green tick Green tick
Alan Zweibel 1979–1980 Green tick
Brian Doyle-Murray 1979–1980
1981–1982
Green tick Green tick
Harry Shearer 1979–1980
1984–1985
Green tick
Don Novello 1979–1980
1985–1986
Green tick Green tick
Denny Dillon 1980–1981 Green tick
Gilbert Gottfried 1980–1981 Green tick
Yvonne Hudson 1980–1981 Green tick
Matthew Laurance 1980–1981 Green tick
Gail Matthius 1980–1981 Green tick Green tick
Ann Risley 1980–1981 Green tick
Charles Rocket (d) 1980–1981 Green tick Green tick
Patrick Weathers 1980–1981 Green tick
Eddie Murphy 19801984 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Joe Piscopo 19801984 Green tick Green tick
Laurie Metcalf 1981 Green tick
Emily Prager 1981 Green tick
Christine Ebersole 1981–1982 Green tick Green tick
Tony Rosato 1981–1982 Green tick
Robin Duke 19811984 Green tick
Tim Kazurinsky 19811984 Green tick
Mary Gross 19811985 Green tick Green tick
Brad Hall 19821984 Green tick Green tick
Gary Kroeger 19821985 Green tick
Julia Louis-Dreyfus 19821985 Green tick Green tick
Jim Belushi 19831985 Green tick
Billy Crystal 1984–1985 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Christopher Guest 1984–1985 Green tick Green tick
Rich Hall 1984–1985 Green tick
Martin Short 1984–1985 Green tick Green tick
Pamela Stephenson 1984–1985 Green tick
Joan Cusack 1985–1986 Green tick
Robert Downey, Jr. 1985–1986 Green tick Green tick
Anthony Michael Hall 1985–1986 Green tick
Randy Quaid 1985–1986 Green tick
Terry Sweeney 1985–1986 Green tick
Danitra Vance (d) 1985–1986 Green tick
Dan Vitale 1985–1986 Green tick
Damon Wayans 1985–1986 Green tick Green tick
Nora Dunn 19851990 Green tick
Jon Lovitz 19851990 Green tick Green tick Green tick
A. Whitney Brown 19851991 Green tick
Dennis Miller 19851991 Green tick Green tick
Jan Hooks 19861991 Green tick
Victoria Jackson 19861992 Green tick
Dana Carvey 19861993 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Phil Hartman (d) 19861994 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Kevin Nealon 19861995 Green tick Green tick
Ben Stiller 1989 Green tick Green tick
Mike Myers 19891995 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Chris Rock 19901993 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Rob Schneider 19901994 Green tick
Julia Sweeney 19901994 Green tick
Chris Farley (d) 19901995 Green tick Green tick Green tick
David Spade 19901996 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Beth Cahill 1991–1992 Green tick
Siobhan Fallon 1991–1992 Green tick
Robert Smigel 19911993 Green tick
Melanie Hutsell 19911994 Green tick
Ellen Cleghorne 19911995 Green tick
Adam Sandler 19911995 Green tick Green tick
Tim Meadows 19912000 Green tick Green tick
Sarah Silverman 1993–1994 Green tick
Jay Mohr 19931995 Green tick
Norm Macdonald 19931998 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Chris Elliott 1994–1995 Green tick
Janeane Garofalo 1994–1995 Green tick
Laura Kightlinger 1994–1995 Green tick
Michael McKean 19941995 Green tick Green tick
Morwenna Banks 1995 Green tick
David Koechner 1995–1996 Green tick
Nancy Walls 1995–1996 Green tick
Fred Wolf 19951996 Green tick
Mark McKinney 19951997 Green tick
Jim Breuer 19951998 Green tick
Cheri Oteri 19952000 Green tick Green tick
Colin Quinn 19952000 Green tick Green tick
Molly Shannon 19952001 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Will Ferrell 19952002 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Darrell Hammond 19952009 Green tick Green tick
Ana Gasteyer 19962002 Green tick
Chris Kattan 19962003 Green tick Green tick
Tracy Morgan 19962003 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Chris Parnell 19982001
20022006
Green tick
Jimmy Fallon 19982004 Green tick Green tick Green tick Green tick
Horatio Sanz 19982006 Green tick Green tick
Rachel Dratch 19992006 Green tick
Jerry Minor 2000–2001 Green tick
Tina Fey 20002006 Green tick Green tick Green tick
Maya Rudolph 20002007 Green tick Green tick
Dean Edwards 20012003 Green tick
Jeff Richards 20012004 Green tick
Amy Poehler 20012008 Green tick Green tick Green tick Green tick
Seth Meyers 2001present Green tick Green tick
Will Forte 20022010 Green tick
Fred Armisen 2002present Green tick
Finesse Mitchell 20032006 Green tick
Kenan Thompson 2003present Green tick
Rob Riggle 2004–2005 Green tick
Andy Samberg 20052012 Green tick
Kristen Wiig 20052012 Green tick
Bill Hader 2005present Green tick
Jason Sudeikis 2005present Green tick
Michaela Watkins 2008–2009 Green tick
Casey Wilson 20082009 Green tick
Abby Elliott 20082012 Green tick
Bobby Moynihan 2008present Green tick
Jenny Slate 2009–2010 Green tick
Nasim Pedrad 2009present Green tick
Paul Brittain 20102012 Green tick
Vanessa Bayer 2010present Green tick
Taran Killam 2010present Green tick
Jay Pharoah 2010present Green tick
Aidy Bryant 2012present Green tick
Kate McKinnon 2012present Green tick
Tim Robinson 2012present Green tick
Cecily Strong 2012present Green tick

Netflix Fest!

I had my first day off in over a month the other day and instead of being productive, like I normally am, I watched comedies and documentaries!  Loads of them.  A handful were worth sharing, so if you have Netflix, these badboys are streaming:

Stand-up giggles:  Zach Galifinakis, Anjelah Johnson, and Eddie Izzard.  ‘Nuf said.

(So, I haven’t seen any of of the Mad TV episodes Anjelah Johnson appears on – from what I hear this standup is more of a re-mash of all her old characters, so nothing new or impressive in that regard.  But hey, I got a good giggle out of it.)

Documentaries Galore

The Dhamma Brothers

This heartfelt documentary made me even more proud to be a part of the Vipassana community.  Check out a group of inmates at a high-security prison in ‘Bama discuss their ups and downs on a ten-day mediation sitting.  Dudes, I can relate – my ten days were personally epic as well!

Forks Over Knives

Could this be the first generation in the United States that lives a shorter life than their parents?

Food as medicine … the power of a healthy diet … and be prepared, they’re talking about a plant-based diet.  What stood out most in this documentary were the numbers regarding disease and obesity in the States.  I wanted to hear more about studies done on plant-based diets.  The China Study is cited in a vague way.  Sure, people who live in cities that eat meat have higher cancer rates, consistently, throughout the country.  But are there other factors that are correlated here?

It would be damn near impossible, but how powerful would a longitudinal study be, properly done with controls and whatnot, in communicating the power of vegan?

Personally, I’d have a hard time giving up cheese, ice cream and fish.  But as I sit here typing, I’m on day three of my “Digestion Holiday” – and feel lusciously light and energized.  Same benefits as the last one I did, before the year abroad, and already I’m feeling the benefits.

This little petri dish does indeed appreciate the whole/veggie menu in spurts … now, to make it a longterm choice … after seeing this?  Never say never!

Enlighten Up!

This was an interesting idea, to send a semi-beginning yoga student out on a mission to progress spiritually in a matter of 6 months.  The director and main subject attend classes with some of NYC’s most renowned teachers (including one of mine, Dharma Mittra!) – and then make their way to Cali, Hawaii and India.  Funny, educational, and well-edited, for sure – though I would have described much of the history of yoga differently …

The director/narrator clearly chose her subject based on his likeability in front of the camera (he’s not too harsh on the eyes, that’s for sure), and the fact that he’s a journalist himself was probably a big draw as well.  Journos usually have a way with words, making the overall film a lot more intriguing.  Unfortunately, the main character doesn’t come up with many pearls of wisdom on his search – and who can blame him?  Six months?  In the beginning, six months hardly means a thing.  You’re just getting to know your body at that point!

It was also somewhere in between “entertaining” and “appalling” to see how little some of these rock star yoga teachers actually know about yoga’s history.  It is possible to engage in academic reading on the subject, and it doesn’t make you any less of a yogi!  Sure, the power of belief is strong, but yoga is a practice that encourages constant scrutiny, of everything, your thoughts, your motivations, your actions, and the context in which all that you do exists.  Facts may not be the most important thing on most paths of yoga, but jnanis would mos definitely argue to the contrary.  In any case, if you’ve been teaching something for decades, wouldn’t you want to know about where it came from?

The trip to India was clearly the big turning point in the subject’s development, a phenomenon I can attest to, hands in the air!  They get in nice interviews with Iyengar and Jois, very modern yoga leaders, one of which has not moved on to the next level of existence.  The guru he chats with at the end is lovable, honest, and vague enough to let you figure it all out for yourself.  I might just have to find him on the next trip … 🙂

Laptop-free Media

It’s nice to bid your lappy a fond farewell.

This is especially true when you know you’re skipping toward the welcoming arms of quite a few old friends.  Your little box of infinite explorations, handy though it may be, does suck up a lot of your time, at least if you’re me, and whilst i pretend it to be a tool of productivity, more often than not, it’s the ultimate procrastination temptation.

So I did it.  I took my dear laptop out of my carry-on bag and left it in my room in Dublin – along with the lists of blogs I’ve been meaning to write and pictures I’d planned on sharing.  No harddrive of music to exchange awesomeness through, no entertainment on the flights.  Who needs it anyway?  It’s only an hour to London!

Ad on the tube for a bookswap. Those rectangular thingies totally predate computers.

It wasn’t as though I was completely free from computers or phones – the former I had access to on occasion and the latter I had in my backpocket most of the time.  But it did feel a touch unheimlich . . . oddly naked . . . a simultaneously liberating and limiting experiment.

This is what happens when you type in "naked picnic" in google images. The best analogy I could imagine for a simultaneously liberating and limiting experience. "Yay, we're in nature as fresh as we were on our birth day!" Then, "Shit! Do I really need to walk way over there to get more hot dog buns?" Awkward.

I also noticed that most of my friends have smartphones, and the instant gratification of being able to find an answer to any question you have (wikipedia is just a few clicks away), or to feel 100% confident that you’ll never really get lost, even in a major metropolitan area (sweet sweet googlemaps!) … is pretty damn attractive.

Could you go a day without media?

In any case, in the next few weeks before my birthday, I’ll be posting 4-5 blogs per week to make up for the last few weeks of blog-silence.  It’s a kind of wrap-up for my summer adventures.  Yoga discoveries, mouthwatering foods, an essay on the art of hosting, blabbering about how brilliant my friends are, and a few travely comments on urban explorations.

Til then, a few media tid bits that crossed my path the last few weeks (even without a computer!):

This video makes me really happy.  Cheers, Danny!

Lisa Hannigan, a singer/songwriter from Ireland … really loving her voice.

A pisstake on misogynist hip hopping:

Stephen Fry (and the assmunch from House) go ballistic on linguistic flexibility. My first experience with Fry using this platform, and it gave me a new-found respect for him and his range.*Now* I see why people adore him so much!

Went to see this band with a friend in London at the Lexington.  I mostly stood in the back with my jaw slightly agape.  The laptop player (yes, this is a band member these days) played his bits with the computer in his hand (pretending it were a kind of instrument),  lead singer looked an awful lot like an old mate, the children dancing in the front were … children …. and the band kept letting fans come up on stage and sing their songs for them.  The gig aged me by about ten years!  But it was still fun.

Tunes n’ Funnies

Funnies

I don’t know where this guy is from, but I think I’d like to go there!  Watch and be merry …

Do you like hummus?  ON YOUR FACE?!  A tongue in cheek (and pita on skin) rendition of the classic commercial for ladies from Cathy Tanaka.

Tunes (as inspired by my trip home to Hawaii)

Takin’ back to elementary school dance battles!

For some reason I always have a really hard time remember these guys’ name, Foster the People.  High quality pop music, a rarity on the radio, and yet somehow used as the theme song on our morning news show…

Karaoke track #1, Sublime’s timeless Date Rape

Take me back to da kine … hehe … we were belting this one out by the end of the night ….