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PCR #234. (Vol. 5, No. 38) This edition is for the week of September 13--19, 2004.
Mike's RantMike's Bust
Hello, gang. A few notes and my response to the Tampa Tribune. Shall we begin?

What’s In A Name? A Look at the Origin of Names of Florida’s Towns and Counties J to K....Happy 20th Anniversary, Miami Vice
 by Will Moriaty
"Sky Captain and The World Of Tomorrow"
 by Mike Smith
Open Letter from "The Association of Ex-Headbangers Turned Republicans"
 by Andy Lalino
First Look: Rio Carbon MP3 Player....Fanzine Memoirs....Couch Potato Notes
  by Vinnie Blesi
Teachers Aren't In It Alone....Centrist? No For Nader!....Nothing Is Better Than Football Season
 by Brandon Jones
Trib Article Misses The Mark....OOOO, What A Lucky Man--He Was....Bush Speak
 by Matt Drinnenberg
It's Just Emotion Taking Me Over....Love That Bill....Please be Our Friends....The Nominees Are....Just Good Old Boys....Union Rules....Hey, Rowengardner--You Suck!....Happy Birthday To Me....Meet The Beatles, Part 34
 by Mike Smith
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If you've been a long time reader of my work, you know I wear my heart on my sleeve. I've bared my emotions in the PCR on everything to songs that make me cry to the tragic loss of a young man I loved like a son. That said, you can only imagine my state of mind after reading the recent Tampa Tribune write up of Crazedfanboy and Nolan (See this issue's PCR frontpage --N). I'm not going to go into specifics and what I thought should and shouldn't have been included. But I will tell you what I told the reporter, because I felt my words summed up this site, and Nolan, perfectly. I told him that Nolan has faced and triumphed over every adversity life can throw a person. He has dealt with things that a lesser man would have let beat him. That is why I admire him as a friend. He has been there for me for MORE THAN 25 YEARS. That is why I love him as a friend. We "unpaid" writers do what we do because we want to. Every week we have the opportunity to share our thoughts with perfect strangers and if we hit a nerve or make one of the readers give pause, then that is payment enough. I hope that the curious who visited our site after reading the article keep coming back. Because I promise you this ride is only going to get better and we'd love for you to come along!

Over the recent Labor Day weekend, I had the opportunity to see a great triple feature on the big screen: "Star Trek II, IV and VI." While watching "Wrath of Khan," it hit me that William Shatner was incredibly good as Kirk. Great comic timing and a moving eulogy that made me cry (again). In researching Mr. Shatner (or Bill, as he told me to call him the one time I met him) I learned that his only awards have been two Golden Raspberries as worse actor and director of "Star Trek V." Well, I am happy to report that this week Bill won an Emmy for his work on "The Practice. Congratulations.

Not sure if they are running where you live, but have you heard the radio spots produced by the Saudi Government? They basically say that they want to be our friends and that they don't want us to blame them for part of 9/11. Pretty weird. Wonder when the French commercials will start running.

Congratulations to U2 and Grandmaster Flash, two of the newest groups nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. U2 should be a lock. Other bands/performers still on the ballot from previous years include: the Sex Pistols, Patti Smith, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Conway Twitty, Randy Newman and the O'Jays. This is the third year the Sex Pistols have been eligible. Should make for a nice induction since frontman John "Johnny Rotten" Lydon one referred to the Hall as "a place where old rockers go to die."

JUST GOOD OLD BOYS (and a girl)
Johnny Knoxville and Seann William Scott have been signed to play cousins Bo and Luke Duke in the "Duke's of Hazzard" film. Current hottie Jessica Simpson has signed on to play Daisy Duke.

Gary Oldman has quit the cast of "Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith," over a Screen Actors Guild squabble. Oldman was to provide the voice of General Grievous, well known Jedi killer. As the film is being filmed overseas, producers have short cut some guild bylaws, which caused Oldman to quit in a sign of solidarity with his union brothers.

If you are a fan of the film, "Rookie of the Year," you will recall that young Henry Rowengardner's friends heckled him with the above line during the film. Earlier this week in Oakland, the fans apparently got ruder, causing Texas Ranger pitcher Frank Francisco to hurl a folding chair into the stands, hitting not the man heckling him but the man's wife, breaking her nose. As a fan of the game, I am appalled at the language and catcalls being aimed at ball players in recent years. Not that I'm innocent. I've sat in Veterans Stadium during a Phillie/Dodger game and "D A R R R Y Y L'd" Darryl Strawberry. I've been politely flipped off by Rickey Henderson, who good naturedly salutes his "fans" by tipping his cap with his middle finger sticking up in front of the bill. I've ever "posed off" against Jose Canseco at Camden Yards in a great bit of taunting that he enjoyed as much as the fans. That's the fun part of fan/player one-upmanship. I have no idea what the fans said to cause Francisco to snap like that, but I can't imagine it being very friendly. After years of wariness, fans are returning to the national pastime in record numbers. I hold both parties, the fans and players, at fault for the recent incident. A few more and the fans will leave even faster then they returned.

As I write this, I have suddenly turned 44. Like the magnum handgun of the same number, I will blow your head clean off. So you have to ask yourself, when you read my rants, do you feel lucky? Well, do you.......PUNK?!

September 16, 1964 - To celebrate my fourth birthday, The Beatles perform before a capacity audience of 12,000 at City Park Stadium in New Orleans.

Well, all for now. Have a great week. See ya!

"Mike's Rant" is ©2004 by Michael A. Smith. Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.