Monday, April 30, 2012

Today in music history: 1986

Today we go back 26 years to 1986, where we find:

"Addicted to Love" by Robert Palmer

Straight up, this video is ridiculous.  The girls that play his backup dancers are terrible, and don't even look like they want to be there.  Also:  Doesn't even look like they are trying to fake play, for how poorly they are doing it.

The song itself is slightly sing-along-able, but only the chorus, so it's like, whatever.

What did you think of this one?

Excel and you: Tips and Tricks for everyday use

I thought today I’d throw out a few little tips today, cause there is soooo much you can do with Excel!

Tip one:  Have you ever done a bunch of data entry, and wanted to check your work, but it took way too long?
Excel will read the contents of your cells, if you have the button, and I know where it is!
Go to the file menu, and click on Excel Options
Click on the customize option, and then on the drop down menu ‘Choose commands from’
Choose the Commands not on the ribbon, and choose ‘Speak Cells.’
Excel will then read the content of your cells out loud when you push the button!  It’s basically the most awesome thing ever.

Tip two: So, you have a first name in one cell, and a last name in a second cell, but you want them in the same cell.  How can you go about doing that?
Simply put, concatenate.
If you put =concatenate(cell1,” “,cell2), they will come together with a lovely space between them!
Or, say you want to put a constant in front of a column of data.
Just put =concatenate(“constant info”,cell1)
It is basically the best thing ever.

Tip three: If you are using a formula, and you forgot which number does what, click on the fx button by the formula bar, and you’ll have a quick and dirty help box pop up, with descriptions and function helps.  It’s super awesome fun times!

Tip four:  Want to manually adjust your print page? Click on the page break preview button on the bottom of your screen! 
And now, Visual Aids for your viewing pleasure!

If you have any things you want to be faster when you work in Excel, let me know in the comments, and I may be able to come up with a trick for you on my next Excel and You!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Today in music history: 1996

Today, we go back to 1996, and

"Always be my Baby" by Mariah Carey

First things first, I totally snorted when I realized this was the swing over a lake song.

The 'plot' of the video was cute too, two kids sneaking out at summer camp to hang out and whatnot.

This was a fun little song, the shoo-be-doop's of course being terribly sing-along-able.

What did you think of this song?

The Funny Stuff: Chung Chung, a live show, and debates

This week, only the Thursday night comedies were new, so we’ll get right into…

Community: Oh. My. Goodness.  This episode was freaking hilarious.  If it wasn’t obvious before, the writers on Community REALLY understand TV.  This episode was a parody of Law and Order, and it was perfection, from the detectives to the crime lab, from the scene transitions to the sound work, everything was there exactly as you’d expect it, but turned completely on its head at the same time.

Troy and Abed played the detectives, and at first, they couldn’t figure out who was going to say the quips, which lead to them throwing quips back and forth several times…this was funnier than it sounds, I promise.   
It got even funnier when they were playing good cop/bad cop, and then switched a bit later.

There was a red herring, a false confession, a declaration of love from someone you wouldn’t expect, and a death that should have been seen coming from a mile away, but was played just right so it was a surprise…this episode was great.  Here are a couple of the funny lines—

Britta, after she was given a picture of the crime scene: With a few adjustments, I can make it old west color!  What, I thought it was cool.

Abed, after Troy storms out of the study room: Sorry about by partner, he’s been on edge ever since we switched.

30 Rock:  This episode was great too-when Tiny Fey gets back to her live roots, you can really tell she is having a fun time.  They also had so many guest stars, including:

Amy Poehler as a young Tina Fey
Paul McCartney/Kim Kardashian as themselves
John Hamm as a 50’s TV show star
Donald Glover as a young Tracy Morgan
Jimmy Fallon as a young Jack Doneghey
Fred Armison as a telethon phone bank (woman) staff

In terms of story, it was pretty much filler, but there were several good laughs, and the couple of flubs were funny as well.  I got one of the good lines as well:

Hazel the new page, as she’s talking to herself regarding what she’s going to do to get famous: First, I need to go to Hollywood…Florida, to pick up my car, then to California…Pizza kitchen to tell off my old boss, the finally to Tinsel Town.  Christmas decorations are so cheap this time of year!

The Office: This was kind of a bummer again, no real funny line, just character development in terms of Andy realizing that he’s not just dandy after getting fired.  I did smile at the end, though, when Kevin was telling everyone how the dog he adopted at the fundraiser was very lazy, and didn’t poop hardly ever, and stunk, and how he had to prop open it’s eyes to watch TV.  Everyone got more and more uncomfortable, thinking the dog was dead, but then you see Kevin at home, and the dog is licking his head, clearly alive, so no worries there.

Parks and Rec:  This is seriously the cutest show on TV.  Leslie and Ben are the most adorable couple, and I really <3 them so much.  This week was the City Counsel debate, and Leslie is sure she’s gonna knock it outta the park, but gets nervous or something, and is really floundering.  Ben doesn’t want her to go negative, afraid it’ll make people think she’s a bully to her simple-minded main opponent, but when she’s finally had enough, she really lets loose, and it is awesome.  Plus we had the fun times with the rest of the crew at Andy and April’s house.  They were hosting a debate watching party for Leslie’s donors, and whoops, forgot to pay the cable bill.  So Andy did what he does best, and be all goofy.  He told the stories of several movies, moving many of the attendees to tears.  It was great.  I do have one line that I managed to get for this one:

Ben is pumping up Leslie right before the debate:
Ben: You can debate Bobby in your sleep!
Leslie: I have debated him in my sleep.
Ben: I know.  We sleep in the same bed.  It’s been hell.

And that’s all she wrote this week!  Not sure what’s we’ll see for next week, but here’s hoping for some good ones!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Today in music history: 1998

Today, we look back to 1998, and find:

"Too Close" by Next.

When this song came up, I didn't think I remembered it, but as it started playing, it all came back to me.  The random pronounciation of words, the 'cool' beat...the dancing boner?!?

Yeah, the female backing chorus basically implies a boner on the guy's part, so that is...interesting.

What did you think of this song?

AMG, how did it get to be morning already?

I sat and tried to come up with a post for this morning, and I got nothin.

Instead, I'd like to share with you a video by a MMO reviewer who goes by the handle of ChaosD1

It's just about everything that I've been trying to do in my Warcraft posts, but better.

Anyway, it's a bit sweary, but I think it lays a good overview of a lot of points a person who is unfamiliar may have.

It does clock in at nearly 45 minutes, so I hope you have some time!


Click here  to see more of his shows!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Today in music history: 1983

Today, as we look back to 1983, we find...

"Beat It" by Michael Jackson

The very first thing I noticed about this video is how nonthreatening the gang members were.  They were clearly hired because of their dance ability, and not cause they looked terribly badass or anything.

Also:  listen around the two minute mark.  Have you ever noticed the weird trilling thing he does at that point?  Very strange.

I also enjoyed the fact that Michael Jackson can apparently break up fights with dance.  I wish I could do that, but the closest I'd get is making the opposing parties laugh at my terribad dance skills, so whatever.

What do you like or dislike about this song?

It's Friday, baby!

It’s Friday again, yay!  That means it’s time for another book review!

This week we have:

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

I never read this book as a kid.  I was much more into series books, like Baby-Sitter’s Club and Sweet Valley, to have any use for sci-fi or fantasy.

But as I got older, I had the desire to read books of more substance.  I wanted to enjoy stories that took longer than a month to go from idea to printing.

And thus, I came across Ender’s Game.

This book is set in the future, and has some dystopian elements, such as child limits and world war, but life, for the most part, seems fairly normal.

The Wiggins have three children, in a two child limit world.  Their first two children were geniuses, and were tracked by the government to see if they would be good candidates for military leadership, but were determined to be insufficient.  The government coerced the Wiggins to have a third child, the titular Ender.

Ender was teased and mocked by not only his classmates(‘third,’ they called him) but by his own brother, who was jealous of Ender’s tracker.  Ender had his tracker for much longer than either of his siblings, and was eventually decided to be sent to battle school, to be trained to fight in the war against the buggers.  He is only six years old at this point.

It is here that Ender’s genius really shines, when he excels at the null gravity game that is the crux of the whole school.  Ender helps take the armies he is assigned to to wins and higher rankings, while helping train the younger and less skilled classmates in maneuvers and things.

Ender eventually has a full army at his command, and it is here that the book really goes into full force, and so I will stop recapping events, in hopes you go and read this book.

This book goes through many themes and ideas, from humanity and compassion, to leadership and villainy, and what it means to understand your enemy.

Ender is a fully formed character, one that, even though he ages significantly through the book, you don’t really notice a change in his tone, but you do notice changes in his compassion, in his understanding of the world.

There are a lot of good thoughts and ideas that come through in this book, and I would highly recommend it to anyone that enjoys a good character driver story.

Rating: 5/5 buggers

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Today in music history: 1987

Today, we go back to 1987, to find:

'(I Just) Died in Your Arms Tonight' by Cutting Crew

When I saw this song come up, I was excited!  'I know this song!' I thought to myself.  But as it turns out, I only knew the chorus.

That was okay though, cause it is a good song anyway.

It is a bit melancholy, but it's got a good hook, and like I said, the chorus is immensely sing-along-able.

Do you have any memories of this one?

Glee: Second verse, same as the first

So we had another episode dedicated to looking to the future, gag me.

Kurt and Blaine get in a fight, because Kurt is feeling distant from Blaine, and so doesn’t immediately put the kibosh on the flirty texts psycho boy from the music store was sending him.  Blaine sees said texts, gets all pissy, they fight, and then Emma, who is self-proclaimed to be not qualified for couples counseling, manages to get them back together with terrible advice.

Of course, at the same time, Will and Emma decide to get the wedding planning in full gear, and have ALSO decided to push it up to May.  Why, you ask?  Because Will is afraid the kids won’t come back if they have it in September.  They manage to hash that out in approximately two minutes, so another pointless plot arc is wrapped up with a cute little bow.

Oh oh OH!  Rachel and Santana decide to be friends, because they sang together or some such nonsense.  As if they hadn’t before, or won’t again.  And I’m sure they’ll be right back to where they were before come next episode, cause what is Glee if not a character development blank slate.

Finally, I just want to say how impressed I am with Brittany’s dancing.  I know Heather Mills was originally brought onto the show for choreography and background dance work, but dang does she bring it when given the chance.

This week’s episode was brought to you by Whitney Houston, whose song were tortured and decimated beyond all recognition.

How Will I know” as sung by Mercedes, Santana, Rachel, and Kurt
I Wanna Dance with Somebody’ as sung by Brittany
Saving All My Love for You’ as sung by Quinn and Dreds
So Emotional’ as sung by Rachel and Santana
It’s Not Right but It’s Okay’ as sung by Blaine
I Have Nothing’ as sung by Kurt