Sunday, May 30, 2010

Dennis Hopper passes: Blue Velvet his best performance

YouTube, Yahoo, Metacafe, DailyMotion,, StupidVideos and Viddler

The legendary actor Dennis Hopper passed away last Friday and from complications due to prostate cancer. Hopper was 74 years old.

Dennis Hopper and Isabella Rossellini in Blue Velet
While some point to Easy Rider as the movie that made Hopper famous, and contained his best role, this space has a different view. Dennis Hopper's role as the psychotic Frank Booth was just plain scary. It was this blogger's first real introduction to the force that is Dennis Hopper and it was unforgettable.

When Blue Velvet was released in 1986, it was the must-see film of my friend at Berkeley and since I liked her, it was mine too. Frankly, for reasons having nothing to do with Blue Velvet or Dennis Hopper or the movie's famed director David Lynch, I went to see it with her.


If you've never seen Dennis Hopper as Frank Booth, we can now see a brief replay thanks to YouTube. BravoTV has Hopper's performance as one of the 100 most scary in movie history:

Here's another scene without the off-film commentary. It's simply shocking and contains strong language to say the least:

Here below, Dennis Hopper tells Bob Costas how he convinced David Lynch to use another gas as a "reference" drug that Frank Booth inhaled. (Meaning Hopper didn't actually use nitrous oxide in the movie.) Hopper explained that Lynch wanted to use Helium gas, but Dennis explained all that would do was make him "sound like Daffy Duck."

Of all of Dennis Hopper's movie roles, Frank Booth was the best.

Dennis Hopper: 1936 - 2010.

But never really gone.

Jamarcus Russell: Oakland Raiders try at getting $10 million back silly

Jamarcus Russell 
The Oakland Raiders released 2007 1st round pick quarterback Jamarcus Russell after three years of expecting the young, green, LSU star and college student to turn a horribly-ran football organization into a Super Bowl contender.

Oakland Raiders Manager of The General Partnership wanted Jamarcus Russell over Notre Dame Quarterback Brady Quinn for the first pick of the 1st round of the 2006 NFL Draft, and righty overruled then-Raiders head coach Lane Kiffin. Kiffin later said he wanted another quarterback, like Stanford's Trent Edwards, but Kiffin made that specific claim after Russell was released, not before.

Hindsight is always 20-20; everyone has it including the Oakland Raiders. What the Raiders did not exhibit was foresight in having a multi-year plan for Jamarcus Russell's training and growth.

Because of that, it's only right the Oakland Raiders absorb the entire $39 million signing bonus they gave Russell, and not attempt to recover any portion of it. That part of it was a "salary advance" is immaterial; it was guaranteed. The Raiders are trying to undo the bad deal they created for themselves. Good luck.

The fiscal pain is undoubtedly hard to deal with given the current economic climate, but its a just punishment for the vast array of organizational problems the Silver and Black have exhibited over Russell's time in the NFL, and before it.

Moreover, it's the Raiders punishment for giving into media pressure and releasing Russell rather than admitting organizational failures and making the necessary changes. The mainstream media reacts with a "throw them out" mentality and knows nothing of football strategy.

The Oakland Raiders Failed

But most of all, the Oakland Raiders caused Russell to hold out of training camp for a long time. A great management owner like The Houston Texans Bob McNair said that "signablity" is important in evaluating first round picks, even though he backed away from the statement in the second video below. Bob McNair would not have picked Russell on that basis alone. That's a criteria the Raiders apparently did not consider, but should have.

That written, Jamarcus Russell was still a good pick by the Raiders; the Raiders just didn't handle him well.

Here's Bob McNair talking about his considerations in picking Reggie Bush or Mario Williams as the first pick at the 2006 NFL Draft:

And talking about picking Mario Williams after the selection was made:

The Raiders signed Jamarcus Russell and gave him a guaranteed contract. It's not Russell's fault the Oakland Raiders weren't ready to develop an offense around him or bring him along over a period of years.

Let's hope they learned their lesson.

Tila Tequila: Time to face reality -- by Nikky Raney

Today, Tila Tequila called herself a journalist on her blog. That was the last straw for me.

Somehow, Miss Tila finds a way to incorporate herself into every blog entry.

Recently she made this claim explaining how her blog is different than all the others:

"I now have MY OWN celebrity Gossip site too, and mine is actually MORE LEGIT, because I don’t put out lies and stories about celebrities trying to defame them by pretending to interview “confidential, unidentified “sources” as they(the media oulet) put it!) so anyway my heart just crushed into 2 pieces because they said some really nasty things about me that were not true at all, and of course as a “CELEBRITY GOSSIP BLOGGER” (and now that I’m in that world) It is a VERY competitive industry!!!! It’s VERY VICIOUS and those other “DIRTY BLOGGERS” as I would like to calll them, are SO DESPERATE to keep their traffic up, that they would write ANYTHING just to say that it was THEIR “EXCLUSIVE” and EXPLOIT and hurt celebrities when it’s not even true!"

I really never wanted to post a rude or judgmental post about anyone, but I think that enough is enough. I already wrote how there is a difference between blogging and journalism, but this is something that needs to be addressed.

Tila Tequila has blocked me from commenting on her blog, because of how critical I have been. This is not meant to be a hateful rant, but meant to inform and educate about what blogging is.

Tequila claims to run a celebrity gossip blog which costs so much money to run, but it is filled with articles that are about things that happened a few days prior. She also has a section called "hottie of the week" which she has updated five times in the span of 3 days. She has made herself "hottie of the week" three times.


I think that "celebrity blogging" needs to be redefined.

A celebrity gossip blog is a blog that is focused on celebrities, not on yourself. Posting "dear diary" posts is not about celebrity gossip.

She posted recently about Britney Spears having more twitter followers than Ashton, but this had already been talked about on May 23rd.

Journalism involves interviews, research, editing, and an assortment of things that her blog does not possess. From the numerous grammatical mistakes to the all caps of her titles, I cannot understand how she can call herself a blogger.

She calls herself a mogul as well.

She has recently decided to start an advice section on her gossip blog, but who wants to take love advice from someone who had two failed reality dating shows?

A celebrity gossip blog does not consist of that.

A celebrity gossip blog should have fresh stories and not just attack celebrities.

Tila's desperate attempts to get attention from celebrities is a bit insane. She says that Ke$ha is a "TIla wannabe." And that Hayley from Paramore is "trashy."

She says of Ke$sha:

"Anyway, you fail horribly trying not ONLY to steal my rap swag, and sound stupid while doing it cuz our mutual friend producer(I won’t put his name out on blast for the sake of our friendship but looks like it’s headed to an EX-FRIENDSHIP if he keeps stealing my swag and my writing skills and my sound!!! ughhh! So annoying!) Anyway Kosher, I mean Ke4sha or whatever your name is you fake, pre-packaged, once country singing, folk singer turned “TILA TEQUILA WANNABE” you need to fall back honey!"

and to Hayley she says:


Her "open letters" to Lindsay Lohan are attempts to attract attention. If Tila truly wanted to help Lindsay and give advice she would have e-mailed or called her. Posting open letters on a gossip site that Lindsay Lohan will never read does not accomplish anything.

You would think all the negative comments that get "thumbs up" would be a sign, but it seems as though she just wants to do what she is doing without making any improvements.

I don't understand how someone could possibly be so delusional.

If you are going to label a story as "breaking news," you should at least post it the same day as it was reported by every other media site.

Writing about yourself in every single post does not contribute anything at all. No one wants to read about yourself. Make a diary if you want that, a celebrity gossip blog is supposed to consist of celebrity gossip, not your innermost thoughts and aspirations.

Tila has spoken about how other bloggers write about scandals and lies and attack celebrities, but she is doing the exact same thing.

"My site isn’t like that. My site delivers to you guys REAL stories and events that has happened and we just deliver the news to you as it is and add our opinions on the stories, just like YOU, the READERS, can state your opinion on each blog post of the news as it comes in…. But here at OMG, we NEVER go out and interview “RANDOMS” and say “HEY GUYS WE GOT THE FIRST EXCLUSIVE” and say nasty, horrible and TOTAL LIES and post it on my site!"

(photo courtesy of benny hollywood)

She consistently posts Twitter updates saying how much she is working on blogging, but then we see the author of the blog entries as "Tila Staff."


"can't write a "Dear Diary" cuz it would be this: Dear Diary, I blogged until I couldn't blog anymore. passed out. woke up. now blog again!"

""alright guys. News is really slow this weekend... so I'm gonna post up some more of my exclusive celebrity dirt on bitches fucked w/me ok?"

She claims to have put her heart and soul into creating this gossip blog, but no one is buying it.

"Also I have spent every single dime that I have left in to building this site, paying the monthly costs, paying my OMG Staff, paying for all the accounts and all the other technical stuff I don’t want to bore you with but so far let me tell you I have spent a hefty amount of money building this site,"

Now, I don't know what staff she is speaking of, because every blog entry inevitably ends up being about her. And the lack of advertisement on her site makes it seem unrealistic. I paid 10 dollars for my domain name, and I can't imagine that it cost her much more for her own domain name. I do not know what "monthly costs" she is speaking of.

Didn't she just post in the first quote I showed, that she is being paid to do this. She claims that this is her job, but then she says that she is paying others. I wish she would just get her story straight.

I think that Tila needs to face reality, and realize the ways she has become what she claims to hate.

So Tila, as you sit on your high and mighty horse and truly believe and claim that you are unlike the others. I would like to point out that your actions speak louder than your words.

So I leave you with some quotes from Tila's "celebrity gossip blog." And I'll leave you to judge if this is "journalism" "reporting" or just bashing. Do these quotes express that Tila is following the standards that she has set for her blog?


"I have gone to these events many times but damn how fun would it be to totally change it up, and now since I have my Celebrity Gossip Blog, I can get a MEDIA PRESS PASS so I can INTERVIEW ALL THE CELEBS FROM THE OTHER SIDE THIS TIME!!!!!!!!!! OMGGGGGG THAT WOULD BE SO AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can’t wait to go there as “PRESS” and bring my film and camera crew and my own paparazzi crew to take exclusives for our site!!!!"

"I”m serious! This is beyond me. But hey. This is “NEW’s I guess????????? I don’t really think it’s news worthy however since I launched my site about 3 weeks ago, I haven’t yet done a Britney Spears Post, so I figured I would Do one today, and ironically, it’s not news at all! LOL.

Oh well, at least I have her in my archives now."

"Ok well this is a Miss Tila Hottie of the week THROWBACK PICture fro last summer!! Yap! This was me last summer………. Deamn times flies and peoplle sure do grow and change a lot right? I feel like a Totally different woman that I am today, then in this picture and the behind the scene video!"

"Plus Piggy, you are NOTORIOUS and KNOWN to talk shit about a celebrity one day, and then try to kiss their ass the next day! That is so sad! This is so pathetic, that I’m not even going to make fun of him anymore cuz that will be blood on my hands when he’s out of a job for real and although I like to joke, I don’t joke when it comes to serious subjects, such as Piggy Perez. I used to really not like that guy/girl/Diva but now, and I’m being TOTALLY SERIOUS when I say this, now I really and truly fill pitty and sorry for the guy."

"They Justice System went SOOOOOO EFFING EASY ON HER! I have TONS of friends from the past who had committed similar crimes as Lindz did but they actually went to jail for ONE YEAR AND ON TOP OF THAT THEY WENT TO EACH COURT DATE ON TIME EVERT TIME!! For Lindz to get off so easy with the REALLY criminal behavior she did, stealing someone’s car, coked up out of her mind, speeding down the highway, almost driving over some people, holding people hostage, I mean WTF!!!!!!!"

So my final words are. Here you go Tila, you are now getting the attention that you have been craving. And this is my final send off. This is the last thing I will write about regarding Tila Tequila. This is something that I needed to get out of my system.

Nikky Raney

The Future of Journalism

Here's my twitter

Danica Patrick, the Indy 500 driver, almost wins Indy 500

Danica Patrick 
Danica Patrick heard the boos, the criticisms, and the questions, and reminded everyone, including this blogger, that's she's a race car driver who just happens to be a good marketer.

UPDATE: Danica Patrick places fifth at Indy 500.

Back from as much as 23rd down, Patrick skillfully manuevered her Andretti Autosport car, and took advantage of both winner Dario Franchitti's need to save fuel, Helio Castroneves' stall coming out of the pits on the 146th lap, and Mike Conway's airborne crash, to finish fifth.

The performance gives Danica Patrick her third top-five Indy 500 race finish in five years. But this one was special because it was as if Danica said "enough, is enough" and decided she was going to power through the experience - boos last week, hot weather, poor-handling car, and the media - and come out a winner.

In a way, Danica Patrick just gave the World as close to an "f-you" as possible. Perhaps Yahoo's CEO Carol Bartz should have her company sponsor Danica Patrick instead of One thing is certain: Bartz will get a great race car driver, who just happens to be a savvy marketer and Twitter fiend:

Thanks for all the well wishes! Awesome finish for the #7 GoDaddy crew! Thanks for all the support, I have the best fans! Congrats Dario!
about 1 hour ago via UberTwitter

Stay tuned.

Dario Franchitti wins Indy 500, makes Ashley Judd happy

Judd reads; Dario leads at Indy
Dario Franchitti won his first Indianapolis 500 race, making his wife Ashley Judd very happy in the process.

Judd, who was photographed by television news station WISH Indianpolis' Eric Halvorson reading a book (or a script for a movie?) as the Indy 500 progressed, reportedly jumped up and ran barefoot down pit lane to hug Franchitti.

Maybe Judd's getting used to the win; it was Franchitti's second Indy victory in three years; his first was in 2007; it's Dario's first Indy win of the series in 2010.

Judd greets Franchitti
Dario's win also made Chip Ganassi, the owner of Target Chip Ganassi Racing, the first racing company to win both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500.

In fact, one visit to Chip Ganassi's website already tells you his company's Target-sponsored car and driver won.

The driver, Dario Franchitti, put in what's described as a "flawless" race performance, even though he almost ran out of gas.

Dario only had 1.6 gallons of fuel left at the end of the Indy 500 because he was clocking it. Dario's top speed was 224.287, before slowing down to conserve fuel at the constant request of his pit crew. He did, and just enough to stay ahead and salvage the win.

Indianapolis 500 Race: Dario Franchitti and Helio Castroneves battle

This update on the Indianapolis 500 Race: Dario Franchitti, who's married to singer (see De-Lovely) and actress Ashley Judd, is in the lead.

According to the Indy 500's Twitter page @IndyTalk, the leaders are 1. Franchitti 2. Helio 3. Tagliani 4. Matos 5. Briscoe 6. Carpenter 7. Dixon 8. Scheckter 9. Bell 10. Hunter-Reay, at the yellow flag.

While Helio Castroneves won the pole position, he's nowhere near the top 10 as of this writing. For Dario Franchitti, this is his first time leading at the Indianapolis 500 Race since he won in 2007. The 5-9, 155 pound Scottish racer with the Italian name is ranked #5 at Indy.

UPDATE: Castroneves is in the hunt according to Indy500 on Twitter:

Lap 68 running order - 1. Franchitti 2. Castroneves 3. Briscoe 4. Kanaan 5. Carpenter #indy500

Indy has Four Women

A record number of women, four, are driving in today's Indy 500: Danica Patrick, Sarah Fisher and rookies Ana Beatriz and Simona De Silvestro.

Indianapolis 500 Race: is Danica Patrick, the marketer, ready?

Danica Patrick
The Indianapolis 500 Race has started and there's no question that its most famous current star (other than Kim Kardashian, who's a spectator and Jack Nicholson, who's the honorary race flag waver) is Danica Patrick.

The difference is Danica Patrick's in the race, but you'd never know Patrick, the driver of the #7 car, was ready for the Indianapolis 500 Race with all of the marketing tie-ins, parties, and events Patrick attends.

All of this, once a standard part of Danicamainia, now comes into question after Patrick threw her race crew under the bus when she said "it's not my fault" in the wake of an awful qualifying car run at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Later, Danica revealed her frustration:

Danica the Marketer

Danica Patrick has become more marketer than race car driver. Just today, her Twitter page @DanicaPatrick has a Saturday tweeted push for screening for chronic bronchitis and emphysema.. banner in the sky! Take the 5 question screener!
about 23 hours ago via web

And before that Danica Patrick was in New York City at about the same time as this blogger and at an event with Indianapolis 500 Race legend Mario Andretti, where Danika reports her phone failed to send a copy of this photo:

Signed autographs at macys for izod.  Pretty damn good company.  on Twitpic

Fortunately for the phone maker, she didn't tweet what brand it was.

Danica's Twitter tweets are a happy trip from events to product mentions like the iPad or this lovely watch by another sponsor Tissot, which Patrick said was designed in 1913 (ish):

prettiest watch I own thanks to tissot. I guess it was design... on Twitpic

Then, Danica Patrick's part of a group of celebs interviewed by Honda as part of its "Dream The Impossible" documentary series.

With all of this, and sponsors are a necessary part of the business of road racing, how much time does Danica have to think about and do racing? It's one thing to practice, but another to hone and refine her driving. There's a break-even point between the number of sponsors needed to build a race business, the time it takes to deal with them which includes events and parties, and the time needed to become a better driver.

There's no question Patrick's in great physical shape; it's the mental part of racing that's at issue. Is Danica doing too much away from racing? Should she increase her sponsor and appearance fee and cut back on engagements?

If Danica Patrick wins or even performs well at today's Indianapolis 500 Race, these questions will not matter.