* The Following Material Is for Parents of Small Children Only and Otherwise Incomprehensible if Not Offensive to Others
Picking on the Food Network has become too easy. It’s low hanging fruit.
So … this week, at least, I thought I’d look at another network. One I actually watch. And these days, when I’m home, the majority of my TV watching time is spent sitting on the living room floor watching Nick Jr. and Noggin. I take an interest in my child’s viewing habits. For all my earlier promises to myself that I’d limit her TV watching time to like–half an hour a day–that has been a hard policy to enforce. Denying a 2 year old when her lip starts to tremble and her face crumples, a look of utter betrayal in her eyes as she implores me: “Da Da? I want Backyardigans!” has proven to be too much for me.
It’s edumacational anyways, right?
Continue reading: FOR PARENTS ONLY »
The camera people are walking on cocaine. Six tons of it. Thousands of kilos of un-cut pure rock. The air is thick with clouds of the stuff as men with machetes are hacking the kilo packages open, scattering it, spraying and spilling the stuff everywhere in white clouds. It looks like Tony Montana's desktop, multiplied by many thousands. My shoes alone are caked with enough to keep an aging supermodel happy for weeks and the Director General of Panamanian security forces advises me to wash them carefully before flying home as the sniffer doggies at the airport are going to find me intriguing to say the least. I would also roundly fail a urine test he says. Just by standing here. In a few moments I will set all of it on fire. About this, I have mixed emotions, as an earlier version of myself would have found this …painful to watch.
Continue reading: Big Sky … Thick Jungle … Zero Tolerance (and Diane Saves The Day) »
I think that of the shows being aired this summer, this is the best we’ve done so far. And it’s gonna be hard to top.
What I see in this Thailand show is the best producing, best photography and best editing in a single episode in quite some time . All the things the shooters have been working at–all the new equipment innovations, strategies and tactics–everything we’ve learned seemed to come to fruition on this one. Add to this mix an editor who saw the footage and understood right away not just what the road team had hoped for and what we’d been inspired by while in Thailand, but the possibilities for some really innovative visual storytelling.
Continue reading: State of Siege »
Let me come right out and say it. I love San Francisco. I am helpless and unwavering in my affection–in spite of every effort over the years to find fault, to dismiss, to sneer. And there’s surely lots to sneer at, San Francisco and the Bay being pretty much the epicenter of so many of my most cherished aversions: political correctness, veganism, rich hippies, sanctimoniousness about food, food fetishism, animal rights terrorists, gastro-dogma, and loud locavores who actually get their produce flown in from Chino Farms in San Diego.
But at this point, I bore even myself railing against the above. Hell, I’m not even bitter about San Francisco taking the lead in banning smoking anymore. They won that battle long ago. Game over.
I guess it’s like any love that’s true–sooner or later you learn to accept the good, bad and silly all together. It’s all part of the package when you know, without any question, that you want the package. It doesn’t even matter if one’s love is returned.
Okay … it does still drive me berserko watching a blissed out St. Alice, burning up a few cords of firewood (in Berkeley no less!) to cook two eggs for an unusually credulous Lesley Stahl.
But in general, I got it all wrong, didn’t I?
It may be the town of Alice Waters but it’s also home to Dirty Harry. The Grateful Dead? Yes. But also the Dead Kennedys. The excrutiating and treacherous lite FM sounds of the Jefferson Starship? True enough. But also Blue Cheer, the Count Five, Big Brother, Sly and Family Stone and the greatest band that never was: the Brian Jonestown Massacre. None of these entities could have come from–or taken root–anywhere else.
Continue reading: I'm Not Angry »