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Archive for November, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving from The East Saeed

Posted by evankessler on November 27, 2008

Last night after a thrilling quiz night 4th place finish at Pete’s Candy Store; a group of us including myself, Rich, Lina, Ahmad, Erika, Kishore, and Abdullah went back to Rich and Lina’s place for a few drinks.  It was during this time I learned a shocking truth.  My friends, The Saeed Brothers, have a famous first cousin.  That famous cousin is none other than international pop superstar Hashim. I was so excited by this discovery that I decided for my Thanksgiving post I would give my readers a little reason to give thanks for all of the talent that permeates this globe, by displaying the proud lineage of my dear friends.

So without any further ado, I give you not one, but two special Thanksgiving treats from Hashim (all the way).  And remember, this thanksgiving eat plenty of Turkey, but don’t eat any Pakistan.

HASHIM- “LOAD THE CANNON”

HASHIM- “MY MOMENT”

Posted in holidays, other people's families, Pop Culture, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Catch A Rising Star

Posted by evankessler on November 20, 2008

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I couldn’t sleep last night so in order to curtail my own restlessness I decided it would be a good idea to google myself.  Somewhere between the 19th and 22nd pages of the search results I came upon an IMDB page for myself.  Now, I know I spent a good deal of time toiling away in TV Production, but I never took it upon myself to create an IMDB page.  Sure, I’ve created several other self-promotional pages (this one being the most obvious), but I never once felt compelled to see myself listed alongside the likes of Martin Scorcese and Steve Guttenberg, unless of course there was to one day be a film based on my life.  Then I’d gladly have Guttenberg portraying me while Scorcese directed.

So imagine my surprise when I clicked on it and found details about my involvement in the production world.  Sure they didn’t list my involvement in VH1’s Top 20 Video Countdown or any of my time working on the I Love The 70’s, 80’s or 90’s series’, or even the R. Kelly Trapped In The Closet Special, but they did however note that I served as a Story Producer on Soapnet’s The Fashionista Diaries.  Despite the correct documentation of my role in that production I was disheartened to see that I was listed as being involved in only two of the ten episodes, when in fact I served the same role throughout the duration of the series.  I have no doubt that someone in IMDB-land will see fit to correct this error.  Other than that, I’m quite pleased with being visible in yet another of the World Wide Netweb’s virtually countless avenues.

The most delightful part about this find was the encouraging sight of the StarMeter.  According to this popularity-gaging instrument it would seem that my STARmeter reading has risen 121% in the past week.  I have no idea why this is, but it is certainly an encouraging sign that things are headed in the right direction for me.  Maybe if I move to Hollywood it will skyrocket 200%.

A Closer Look at My STARmeter

A Closer Look at My STARmeter

Actually, I think this STARmeter thing could be a great new strategy in convincing potential literary agents to take on any projects I pitch their way.  All I’d have to say is, “look at my STARmeter…If that’s not enough to tell you this book will sell then I don’t know what is.”

In a related story Natalie Portman’s STARmeter is down 6% today.  I think she needs to latch herself onto someone up and coming; someone whose star has recently risen more than 120%, otherwise her career could be in danger.

Posted in Celebrity, entertainment, Exclusive, Media, Pop Culture, random facts, Television, VH1 | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Microsoft Shows Low Self-Esteem

Posted by evankessler on November 18, 2008

In the olden days of computer-dom a case could have been made by many a PC user about the superiority of their beloved  main frame over that of the Macintosh.  They’d say, “different strokes for different folks” and go off to type up angry newsletters in Works to the CEO’s of Bartles and Jaymes about the discontinuation of their favorite fruity wine cooler, which they would then later send via pony express.

Well I'll Be...It's A Macbook Pro!

Well I'll Be...If That Isn't MacBook Pro

These days Apple seems to have a pretty clear leg up on the competition in everything from operating systems to advertising. While you’d think the folks at Microsoft might raise their arms in disgust and say, “PC is the place to be,” their promotional material tells a different story.

Rather than champion their own products, it seems that a Microsoft Vista promotional bundle that accompanies several prominent desktops, sports photos of families “getting busy” with a new Macbook Pro. I can’t necessarily blame the family for showing off their sexy new laptop to the sad owners of a clunky desktop, but for Microsoft that’s like pushing someone else’s daughter on the hunky High School Quarterback and telling yours to clean out the garage.

In addition to their Apple faux-pas, the pamphlet also shows two children getting hands-y with something resembling a Sony Playstation remote.  Competitors 2, Microsoft 0.  How’s that for inspiring consumer confidence?

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Hockey Night In Manhattan

Posted by evankessler on November 18, 2008

Hockey In Action!

Hockey In Action!

Monday evening was Hockey Night in Manhattan. While it wasn’t declared a national hockey holiday, it was certainly a momentous occasion as my brother and I entered the hallowed halls of “The World’s Most Famous Arena” to catch the first place New York Rangers taking on the Senators of Ottawa, from that distant land up north known to some as Canadia.

We met up 6:45pm just outside the home of the 1994 Stanley Cup champions and eagerly made our way through the lobby and turnstiles to the concession stand where we grabbed a hot dog and a beer before making it to our seats in section 209 where we would view the entirety of the contest.

Prior to arriving my brother and I had discussed getting there on time in order to hear the singing of the Canadian National Anthem, ” O Canada!”  It’s not often you get to go to a major sporting event in the United States and hear the singing of another nation’s anthem, but I have a certain fondness for this particular song.

My brother and I used to have a hockey setup in our basement where we would had worked out our own sort of miniature competition.  We would take turns donning goalie pads and each of us would get a minute or two to try and score on each other.  Much of this was done during intermissions of Ranger games we were watching on TV.  Prior to the start of the games we would watch John Amirante belt out the national anthem and sometimes the Canadian national anthem if a team from the Great White North happened to be playing.

It was from John Amirante I learned the Canadian National Anthem, so it was actually kind of a thrill as I saw him take to the red carpet yesterday with his mic in hand ready to unleash the beast.  My brother and I quietly sang along feeling a little bit odd that no one else took it upon themselves to join in, but I genuinely like the song.  I think’s as good as a national pride tune as any.  The one thing that struck me funny about the performance was during the line, “god keep our land glorious and free” it sounded like he sang “God keep our land glorious and green” though I may have just misheard him.  Though I briefly wondered if I had the lyrics wrong all these years.

When the distinguished Mr. Amirante launched into the Star Spangled Banner, I moved my right hand over my heart, and even though expressing patriotism at these moments has sort of become an antiquated notion, I kept it there the entire time and didn’t really start cheering for the song at the end.  The main reason I remain so stoic during the Star Spangled Banner during sporting events goes back to an episode of Mr. Belvedere where Bob Uecker’s character launches into an on air tirade on his news show about how they should stop singing the anthem at sporting events because no one is showing the song the respect it deserves anymore.  Somehow, that deeply affected me or at least filled me with enough sense of duty to keep my hand placed firmly over my heart for two minutes or so.  Around the “rocket reds glare” portion John really busted out the extra bravado kicking up the energy level in his voice a notch or three, much to the delight of the crowd.   When “the home of the brave” faded out and he walked off the ice, everyone in the stadium new it was time for these two teams to tango.

Unfortunately, the early going was rather slow.  The first quarter was not really filled with highlights except for a few saves from the Rangers top-notch netminder Henrik Lundqvist.  The most exciting action early on came after the first period when the Staten Island’s Little Rangers showed everyone how the game is played.

Those Little Rangers Sure Can Play

The second period was just sloppy.  The Rangers looked like a team who didn’t want to win.  I wouldn’t have put the little Rangers out to face Ottawa, but they couldn’t have done much worse.  It’s not as if the Senators were at the top of their game either but they came out of the period with a 1-0 lead on a Daniel Alfredsson goal.

The fans seemed none too optimistic for the third period, but the hometown team began to show a greater sense of urgency and a much more deft puckhandling ability.  They starting getting more shots on goal than their opponents and eventually it payed off as Fredrik Sjostrom lifted a shot past Ottawa Goalie Alex Auld 7:17 into the period.  The rest of the third period was a hard fought nailbiter, but in the end it was either going to have to be settled in overtime or a shootout.

OT proved fruitless, so it was on to a best of three shootout.  All the Rangers would need is their first attempt by Nikolai Zherdev, as his goal would prove to be the game winner.

The crowd erupted as the puck passed the Ottawa goal line for only the second time all evening, but Lundqvist was rock solid stopping all three shootout attempts, leading to his selection as star of the game.

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Final Score: Rangers 2, Senators 1

Despite a bit of sloppy play, and slow goings, the evening ended up being a roaring success and a testament to the excitement of seeing a hockey game in person.  The NHL…It’s good when your team is winning!

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You Are Not Watching MADTV

Posted by evankessler on November 13, 2008

altvTimes are tough all over.  While this has all been made pretty apparent lately by the simple act of looking at our wallets or the balance of our savings accounts, now it is reflected on the weekend late-night TV schedule.  After 14 seasons FOX’s mysterious sketch comedy stalwart MADtv has been given the boot by the network.  No doubt a product of their network having entirely too much money in the mid- 90’s thanks to the work of President Bill Clinton’s economic policies, the show has quizzically remained on the air ever since due to some glitch in programming.

The typical MADtv episode was marked, we figure, by the penchant for overcomedifying every one of it’s sketches to the point of unfunniness, and a mediocre cast hell bent on repeating the same lame characters week after week.  Unlike it’s chief competitor Saturday Night Live, the show’s dissolution will leave behind little cultural impact as the biggest names ever to emerge from it’s ranks are Orlando Jones, Artie Lange, and Frank Caliendo.  The show, however, does leaves behind a loyal following of around twenty to thirty people who are sure to miss it dearly.  R.I.P. MAD TV and here’s hoping that Comedy Central retires it’s reruns and gets the rights to show SNL again.

Posted in comedy, Television | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Massage

Posted by evankessler on November 13, 2008

massageOver the past few days I’ve fallen victim to increased tightness in my upper back and neck areas. Turning my head to look to the left has sent a dose of mild agony shooting into my neck and left shoulder areas for the majority of the past forty-eight hours. To alleviate the pain I booked an appointment with my gym’s masseuse knowing full well I would not have to pay for the treatment as one free massage was included with my membership.

Not quite sure what to expect though quite sure there would be no happy ending, I took to the street today at 1:40pm and simply crossed it to wind up at my local health club just in time for my date with a relaxing destiny.  My masseuse was running a tad bit late, but arrived within five minutes of the start of my waiting period.  She was the tall athletic type, sort of a mix between a volleyball player and a swimmer.  Not wholly attractive, but not unattractive in the least.  She certainly looked like she would have strong hands though.

I nervously followed her into her lair of that smelled of soothing oils.  Once we entered I felt a slight sense of shame like a virgin going to see a prostitute as I asked, “what do I take off?”.  I had never actually received a professional massage before so my sense of the appropriate was non-existent.  My last massage had been at the hands of my hairstylist who would do some kneading and chopping prior to sending me on my way in an effort ot gouge some additional tip from my wallet and before that I remember the innocent, yet slightly homo-erotic pre pubescant massages that my summer camp bunkmates and  I used to take turns administering.to each other.  Remembering the latter there was a great sense of relief in never having taken part in the boner contests or having worn all white outfits to the camp dance.

All of the fond and not so fond massage memories aside, it was time to get down to business.  I was told to take off as much as I wanted and get under the sheet.  I found this peculiar seeing as I thought in order to have my back worked on it shouldn’t be through a sheet.  I wondered if my masseuse was modern orthodox jew or something.  That being said, since I was planning on having my back and neck worked on  the removal of my shirt was appropriate, but the rest was not.

The masseuse left as i readied myself and positioned myself under the covers with my face down on that face holder type thing.  Two minutes later the massage therapist returned and immediately turned on some soothing yet partially funky and upbeat new age music, instructing me that if I need to take a second at any point to let her know.

She began to rub my back over the sheets and loosen me up as much as she could through them.  Soon enough though the covers were peeled back and my muscles felt as though they were being measured for tightness through a gentle kneading.  After one round  a second song came on.  It sounded like the soundtrack to a scene in which you were emerging from the darkness of the shadow of a planet eclipsing the sun, only to see it’s warm glow reflecting off the rings of  Saturn….or at least that’s what I thought of.

What New Age Music Makes Me Think Of

What New Age Music Makes Me Think Of

That visual only lasted so long as the music got increasingly “funkier” and with that the oil was being evenly distributed along my back and neck and the rubbing became increasingly harder and deeper exposing the tightness of my shoulder and neck.  It seemed as though she was trying to break through the barrier they were putting up and with each progressive push they fought against her elbows, forearms and strong hands until they could fight no more. My muscles felt relaxed and incredibly less achy and breaky than before.

This whole process seemed to last an eternity, due to the muscular struggle.  For all I knew, with the uniformity of the music we could have only listened to two four-minute new age songs by the time it was all over.  However, it had been much longer than that.  As my masseur let up, she told me we were done and that I could take my time getting up.  I looked at the CD player which read “Song 7”.  I had no idea how long it had been, but I assumed probably 30 minutes, give or take.  I laid around for about a minute before popping up from the table, getting dressed and heading out.  Sweet relief.  This is what it feels like to be relaxed.  If I ever become rich, I’m hiring a full time masseuse to be on my staff.

Posted in new experiences | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Heart Warming Sales

Posted by evankessler on November 13, 2008

Yesterday I had the cockles of my heart warmed and the contents of my wallet padded when my wonderful friend Jess S. alerted me of a birthday surprise that was unceremoniously thwarted Friday evening by the unreliable demons of the UPS monster.

Apparently Jess had plotted to arrive with Anna M and her brother in official gear from the not-so-profitable EvanKessler.com shop as a testament to my commercial powers and our lasting friendship.  Unfortunately, UPS kept playing games with their delivery by misinforming them as to when the product was to be delivered, transforming a masterful plan into an utterly moot scheme.

Just One of Many Shirts You Can By At The EvanKessler.com Official Store!

Just One of Many Shirts You Can By At The EvanKessler.com Official Store!

To me though, it was not a meaningless gesture, it was the ultimate display of genuine warmth and affection.  And it made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.  So even though it’s a bit belated I wanted to thank her and everyone who showed up on Friday to my 30th birthday extravaganza.  It was truly an event that I will not be forgetting anytime soon.

Posted in Birthday, birthday party, evankessler.com official store, surprises | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Things I Learned On My First Day of Being 30

Posted by evankessler on November 5, 2008

They say wisdom comes with old age.  Whoever “they” may be, they are most certainly correct.  Here are a few things I learned on my first day being 30.

1. The simple act of typing “30” when the treadmill prompt asked my age lowers my target heart rate from 124 to 123.

2. Charleston, not Wheeling, is the Capitol of West Virginia, though I believe I knew that way back in elementary school when I scored 100 on a test that asked me to locate all of the States and name their capitals.

Big Red Star Basically Screams, "STATE CAPITAL!"

Big Red Star Basically Screams,

3. The reason I thought that Wheeling was the Capital of West Virginia has something to do with the Billy Joel song “The Ballad of Billy The Kid.”

4. A birthday is not necessarily a lucky day. You do not automatically win money from a scratch off ticket just because you’ve chosen to purchase one on your birthday.

5. I have a wonderful group of friends.

Posted in fitness, geography, learning, random facts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Evan Kessler’s Astrological Outlook for Year Number 30

Posted by evankessler on November 4, 2008

My favorite part of the New York Post Horoscopes is the part where Sally Brompton doles out what’s in the stars for the next year for people whose birthday it is.  Every year on my birthday I usually pick up a copy of the Post for the sole reason of reading that nugget of wisdom plucked from the cosmos.  Today I chose to forgo the print edition as the online version was free.  I think I’m normally used to sunny predictions of success and well-being, but this morning Sally’s astrological prognostication seemed to ring of the ominous “six more weeks of winter” tone.

horoscope Nov. 4

In any case, I shall attempt to use Sally’s message as a guiding example for life and how to live it.  Indeed she is correct in noting that I will “need to chose between my future and the past over the next few months.” My only question is November 5th my future now or my past then?  At Sally’s behest I will begin to rid myself of all emotional baggage today.  I am in need of physical baggage, however, as I’m going to Thailand in a little over a month and need a light enough garment bag that I can fit a suit in, but won’t be a hassle to carry around for two weeks.  If anyone has seen such a bag, let me know and I’ll gladly shed some additional emotional baggage so that it might be an easier load to shoulder.

Posted in Astrology, Travel | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Presidential Election Perspectives

Posted by evankessler on November 4, 2008

Since 1936, the outcome of a football game has rather accurately predicted the results of the Presidential election.  Save for 2004, each time the Washington Redskins have won their game prior to the election the incumbent party has stayed in power, while a loss has meant a party power transfer.  Last night the Washington Redskins lost 23-6 to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

While we are not yet sure if the 2004 result is the anomaly in this trend or if it’s the new norm, the team’s starting Cornerback has an interesting take on this whole election business.  For his unique perspective on this tendency for the Redskins to serve as Presidential Predictor I present to you the sage words of Carlos Rogers.

carlosrogers-2

Carlos Rogers: Cornerback and Wisdom Monger

“Hey, like a lot of people said, one president gonna stick it up your butt, the other one’s gonna stick it further in the butt, so it don’t matter, man. Whatever happens, happens. That’s something we can’t control.”

Wise words indeed. Carlos and the Redskins alone, may not be able to control it America, but you can.  So if you haven’t already.  Go out there and vote.

Posted in Football, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »