Archive for February, 2011

The Double Bonus: Episode 2

It’s episode two of the Double Bonus podcast! Listen as Tim and John S break down the weekend’s slate of games, and hear John S apologize for being so wrong. Click here for the podcast of a lifetime….

 

Monday Medley

What we read while Colin Firth managed to give a stutter-less acceptance speech…

An Ill-Informed, Underqualified Oscar Preview

Although NPI officially endorses the new Oscar voting policy for the Best Picture award, one of the major downsides of expanding the category to 10 is that it makes it twice as hard to keep up. I have seen five of the films nominated for the Academy’s grand prize tonight; you’d think that would be enough, but it leaves me without anything to say about 50% of the nominees. I mean, who has time to see 10 movies a year? I have TV to watch…

Anyway, if the Academy thinks that not having seen most of the films up for awards tonight is going to stop me from offering predictions and analysis, they were wrong. Dead wrong. Like last year (when I was 5/8), we’re sticking with the eight major awards: Continue reading

The Drawing Board: Health Insurance

If there’s one thing people love to talk about, it’s health insurance. Go to any coffee shop in America and you’re bound to find at least one person who has health insurance. But what the insurance companies don’t want you to know is that, in all likelihood, many more than one person there has health insurance. And while it’s true that people don’t really like talking about health insurance, you can bet that someone you know has it, and has it bad.

If you’re perfectly healthy like me, you obviously don’t want health insurance because what’s the point? Who wears a raincoat when the forecast says clear skies, other than actors like in The Perfect Storm? No one. Plus for most people, umbrellas would be way more useful—but not in that storm they wouldn’t! What a movie. But you know what? Everyone died at the end of that movie, so are we really supposed to believe that it’s a true story? But I’m not here to take The Perfect Storm to the drawing board, or even spoilers for that matter—sorry about that—because the truth is that, for most of us, health insurance poses a far greater danger than some type of perfect storm. Even the so-called perfect storm isn’t that dangerous—just stay inland. Same with Jaws. If you stay on land, the worse that can happen is Twister, but I’m not really scared because that movie was lame.

Continue reading

NPI Comes Alive!: The Double Bonus Podcast

Welcome to NPI Comes Alive! It’s the podcast branch of the NPI network. Our first edition brings back The Double Bonus, with Tim and John S finally breaking down this college basketball season. Click here to listen.

The King of Limbs: Review

Your first reaction to the latest Radiohead album will be based almost entirely on what you expected from it. This is true to some extent for every album (and every movie, television show, novel, meal, etc.), but it’s particularly the case for Radiohead. The band has built a reputation as the most daring and innovative band on the planet, and it has now gone over three years between albums twice in a row. In other words, these guys have a lot to live up to.

I suspect that Radiohead knows this, and that it at least partially motivated the quick release of The King of Limbs. Just over a week ago, the album had no official name or release date; then last Monday the band announced not only that the album was complete, but that it would be released in five days. To top all that off, the band released the album on Friday, a day before they had initially planned.

The general effect of this was both to preempt any long, anticipatory buildup to the album, as well as to shift focus from The King of Limbs itself to the manner of its release (something Radiohead has done before).

Not that fans need or ought to be “distracted” from The King of Limbs: The album is quite good. Continue reading

Got a Secret? About PLL’s “The Bad Seed”

With an especially boring slate of Big Monday games—has it ever been worse than this year, for some reason? The Big East and Big XII are good, but man, I can’t remember a good Big Monday game all season*—I had time to watch Pretty Little Liars at its regular hour this week. And even to rewatch some prior episodes during its all-day Presidents’ Day marathon.

*You heard it here first: Neither Syracuse nor Villanova will be playing past the NCAA Tournament’s first weekend.

That’s right: I’m recommitting myself to PLL full-tilt until the season finale in a few weeks. And Monday night’s episode, “The Bad Seed,” has me, well, ambivalent about that commitment.

Let’s explore why:

Continue reading