February 15th, 2009


The Shirley Jackson Awards Lottery

The Shirley Jackson Awards Lottery is now in full swing! Last year I helped this estimable new darkfic award raise money by editing their benefit anthology Jack Haringa Must Die! Rather than choose someone else to kill off this year -- consider yourself lucky, imago1; that beard-trimming incident I had planned for you would have been brutal! -- the good folks behind the awards have decided on something even more apropos to the Shirley Jackson legacy: a lottery!

You can find all the good stuff being auctioned off here. But hurry, you only have until February 23!

Fine items all, and if I had a kajillion dollars I would throw money behind each and every one of them. Unfortunately, I had to be very selective instead. Here's what I bid on. If you win them and I don't, the savage beard-trimmer is coming for you too!

+ A tuckerization by Rick Bowes, the Godfather of Greenwich Village!

+ A tuckerization by suricattus, just because I want to see what awful thing she's been waiting all these years to inflict upon me!

+ A signed copy of Gahan Wilson's The Cleft and Other Odd Tales, because I've been searching for an affordable copy of this out of print collection for years!

+ A personally inscribed galley of The Little Sleep by pgtremblay, the Big Brute of Beantown!

+ And a porn tuckerization by nihilistic_kid, the Bad Boy of the Bay Area whose erotic tales always end in loneliness and misery--just like in real life!

There's plenty of other cool stuff for you to choose from too, if you're so inclined. Each raffle ticket is only $1, though you can buy as many tickets as you like for each item, to increase your odds of winning (as long as it's not one of the things I want, you monsters!). Check it out, see if there's anything that strikes your fancy, and bid to benefit the Shirley Jackson Awards!

Eastbound and Down

Eastbound and Down, the latest HBO comedy, premiered tonight after The Flight of the Conchords. While Flight was in top form, featuring one of its best songs ever, "Too Many Dicks on the Dance Floor," Eastbound is going to have to iron out some kinks if it wants to keep me watching.

Danny McBride stars as Kenny Powers, a has-been Major League Baseball star who now teaches gym at the same middle school he used to attend. McBride does a great vacant meathead look, which works perfectly for the character, but the problem, at least in the premiere, is that the cast is so full of kooks, slobs and stuck-ups that there's really no one you want to tune in for week after week. You don't really want Powers to succeed because he's an asshole who doesn't seem able to learn or grow into a better human being -- but there's no one else you really want to see succeed either. His brother seems nice, at least, but he's a bit player right now. Everyone else is a wacko.

That said, I laughed out loud several times, and that's always a good sign with TV comedies, which usually average one laugh per episode, if that. Eastbound and Down is definitely crass, dumb-guy humor, but damn if I didn't get a kick out of all the swearing in front of the school kids. I'll give this one another shot next week to see if it grows on me some more or proves itself a one-joke wonder.