Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Twitter Log: 2008-05-01

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • UT Geeks: Any Java programmers looking to work for a startup, DM me your email address. #

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Twitter Log: 2008-05-02

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm

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Ironman at the Movie Theater

Filed under: Movies,Reviews — Laura Moncur @ 9:36 am

Ironman at the Movie Theater on FlickrThey had a guy dressed up as Ironman at the movie theater last night. We couldn’t quite tell if he worked there or not. He seemed pretty embarrassed that I wanted to have my picture taken with him. I don’t care. His costume was awesome! He made it out of Solo cups.

The movie, by the way, was spectacular. I haven’t seen an action flick this good since the last Batman movie. EVERY actor was excellent. There wasn’t one cringe-worthy moment (I allow several per comic book movie). I want to see it again, soon… That’s how good of a movie it was.

Special kudos go out to Robert Downey, Jr. for getting his act together, surviving his addiction, and coming back better than ever. He’s truly an inspiration to me. If he can quit drugs, then maybe I’ll be able to quit overeating. Keep up the good work, man, and if they offer you the sequel, TAKE IT!

Self Portrait: Saturday 05-03-08

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 11:10 am

I know the iPhone technically has a better camera than my old Treo
did, but I have yet to warm up to it. I recently got a shiny case for
my phone that makes taking self portraits easier because I can see my
reflection in the plastic on the back, but it still took me fifteen
tries to get this one half-way right.

The iPhone is the best convergent device on the market, but it still
leaves a lot to be desired. I hope they improve the camera in the 3G
model. I also hope they improve the memory, the cut/paste dilemma, and
a bunch of other stuff.

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my iPhone. I tried for so long to get my
Treo to do what it said it could do that I am grateful for the simple
act of playing music and answering phone calls. It’s so close to
perfect that I just want a couple more items to make me completely

Twitter Log: 2008-05-03

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • Getting in line for Ironman. Yippee! #
  • Getting ready for CodeAway today. Some of the stuff is packed, but I need to unplug my computer and put it in its backpack. #
  • @herlo We’ll tell everyone at CodeAway to come right over to the Fedora 9 release afterward! #
  • God, it’s beautiful out today! #
  • Just finished setting up for CodeAway. No one is here yet. :( #
  • Lamont Peterson at CodeAway now! yeah! #
  • CodeAway is AWESOME is time. @robertmerrill There’s plenty of room for you! #
  • Utah Geeks: Come to the Fedora 9 Release Party tonight at 6pm: http://tinyurl.com/yoeqzc #

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Twitter Log: 2008-05-04

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • @charlieoliver You’re missing out on the fun! Get here to the Fedora Release Party! #
  • It’s so freakin’ beautiful outside that I’m going to walk to Liberty Park instead of hitting the treadmill. #

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Twitter Log: 2008-05-05

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • I would just like to brag that I’m awake at 5:30am, in my gym clothes and ready to hit the treadmill. Birds are singing outside! #
  • Run and weight training done. Eating breakfast and hopping in the shower. Dentist today. I’ve been avoiding this for too long. :( #
  • In the dentist chair. #
  • Out of the dentist. God, I love Dr. Tarbet. No numb tongue or lips, just perfect fillings! #
  • Geek lunch noon at Mi Ranchito 9550 S & State. Who’s going? #
  • @JesseStay Geek Lunch this Friday at 12:30pm at Citrus Grill. WHICH Citrus Grill? #
  • Geek Lunch THIS Friday 05-09-08 12:30pm at Citrus Grill on 123rd. Details and RSVP at Upcoming: http://upcoming.yahoo.com/event/585081/ #

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Twitter Log: 2008-05-06

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • Watching the blu-ray demo disk at Circuit City. Want a big TV to play MarioKart Wii. #
  • @libel_vox Probably best to find a used Acer and swap out the drive. #
  • @rolandksmith I had a really good dentist visit yesterday. Sending my dental karma your way. Do you feel it? #

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PostSecret: Burdens

Filed under: Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 10:31 am

This postcard from PostSecret showed up last Sunday:

PostSecret: title=

It was 2003 and it’s a 840 square foot house, but other than that, ditto…

PostSecret‘s beneficiary is the National Hopeline Network. It is a 24-hour hotline (1 (800) SUICIDE) for anyone who is thinking about suicide or knows someone who is considering it.

Twitter Log: 2008-05-07

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • I am going crazy right now. I wish I could control when the crazy comes. :( #
  • Reconstructing iTunes playlists that were lost in the drive crash. Resyncing iPhone. Hope it works… #

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Personal Account from One Who Refused

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 9:40 am

The Milgram ExperimentIt seems unlikely that anyone has NOT heard about the psychological experiment in the sixties called the Milgram Experiment, but if you haven’t, here’s the Wikipedia entry:

If you were asked to shock another human being and could hear him screaming at each shock, would you continue to shock him? What if the shocks were increased to a dangerous level and the other person said he had a bad heart? What if you were ordered to? We like to think that we wouldn’t do it, but in the experiments, 85% believed they gave shocks strong enough to kill.

I saw the footage of this experiment in a psychology show and I’ll never forget the subject who kept shocking, even when the “learner” had stopped responding and was considered dead. But what about that 15% that refused? Here is a personal account from one of them:

Still, the results of the Milgram experiment demonstrates how rare and heroic is the “Courage to Refuse” (as one of their organizations is named). These are people who deserve to be honored.

It seems his distrust of authority was the one thing that saved his “learner” from suffering. What I attribute to paranoia could actually save someone’s life. It’s funny how fine the line between sanity and madness is.

Via: Mind Hacks: The man who defied Milgram’s conformity experiment

Twitter Log: 2008-05-08

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • @anntorrence It’s not a good idea to force things. You’d do better to play at the park or take a walk than try to force writing. #

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Twitter Log: 2008-05-09

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The Blogging for Business (B4B) Conference

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 2:05 pm

The B4B Conference

This June 6th, I’ll be speaking at the Blogging for Business Conference. I’m really excited about it because I’ll be on a panel with Naked Jen and Shannon Johnson. You can see the other speakers here:

The B4B is orchestrated by the wunderkind, Matthew Reinbold, and I’m so grateful that I was asked to present this year. If you have ever wanted to visit Utah, the B4B is the perfect excuse to write it off on your expense report. Check it out!

Twitter Log: 2008-05-16

Filed under: Twitter Log — @ 11:59 pm
  • In Oregon. Just finished filming a walking video for Starling Fitness. Rendering… #

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Just In Case I End Up Lost

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 10:47 am

Just In Case I End Up Lost by Laura Moncur on Flickr This is where I am hiking right now, you know, just in case I end up lost or injured or kidnapped or something.

Update 11:13 am PDT: I am back from my hike. No injuries. No confusing trails. No kidnappers. Just lots of dogs and friendly people. I forgot that it was a weekend and that the trail would have lots of people.

Now that I’m a grown up, I don’t have to check in with my mom with everything that I do. I still feel like I need to. I guess I’ll just keep checking in with the Internet. It’s like I have a million moms all over the world to check in with. Somehow that’s comforting to me. At least the Internet knows where I am…


Bonne Bell Lipsmackers

Filed under: Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 11:18 am

I saw this ad and I immediately thought of fifth grade. That was the year Bonne Bell’s Lipsmackers were THE most popular thing.

Click to see full size ad

This advertisement doesn’t do them justice because you can’t see how freakishly large they were. They just look like a normal chapstick-sized lip gloss. But NO, they were at least three inches tall and an inch in diameter. They were large and the cool girls would have them sitting on their desk like a plastic column of Dr. Pepper scented popularity.

Dr. Pepper was the cool flavor, by the way. If you were unlucky and your mom bought you a 7-Up Lipsmacker instead, you might as well leave it at home. The Hires rootbeer flavor was a close second, but I never saw the Tootsie Roll or Good N Plenty flavors.

When my grandmother was starving me in Montana, I used to put on the Dr. Pepper Lipsmacker on my lips and pretend I was eating something sweet. I was tempted to eat it so many times. If you licked your lips, they tasted sweet.

I can almost smell it now…

Photo via: Stuck in the ’70s — 1970s products


Obama Posters

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Nicole Lee says that these posters are all over San Francisco now.

Obama Poster by Nicole Lee at Flickr

I haven’t seen any in Utah. My first instinct was they looked just like the Big Brother Is Watching You posters in the movie of 1984.


I can’t believe that the Obama supporters really wanted to invoke the 1984 imagery and liken him to Big Brother, do they? Where did those posters come from? Were they put up by the Republicans? I can’t imagine there are enough Republicans in San Francisco to organize something like that.

Were they put up by the Hillary faction? Is THIS how she intends to win?

What the heck is going on?

Update 05-23-08: GREAT comments on this, so read them if you are interested in these posters. AND because I started writing about political things, the random ads that are showing up are promoting John McCain. I DO NOT SUPPORT JOHN MCCAIN, so don’t believe those ads. He’s just paying to put them up on any site that mentions any of the candidates.

Twitter Log: 2008-05-22

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Twitter Log: 2008-05-23

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From A Diary To A Tool

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 10:15 am

I used to write more intimately here. I used to try to prove that I was a good writer by actually writing something that I worked hard on. I used to go over every post many times over to make sure they were perfect.

Now, this blog is more like a series of notes to myself and strange communications with others. I post videos that I like to watch so that I can come back here and watch them again. I post quick and important information about myself so that my friends will know what’s going on in my life right now. I post links to sites that I think I might find interesting and want to remember.

It’s like my blog became more for me and less about me. It has become a tool instead of a broadcast medium.

I don’t really know how I feel about that.

Part of me is sad because I like to write and I want to be profound. I want people to say that the things that I’ve written about have moved them. I get a lot of that at Starling Fitness, so I don’t feel like I need it as much here anymore, but I only write about health, fitness and body issues there. There is a lot more to life than body measurements and heart rate monitoring.

Part of me likes how Pick Me! has evolved. It is a very useful tool for me. It’s like my personal journal that I can instantly search. When I saw that the May 19th Entertainment Weekly listed Lykke Li’s “I’m Good, I’m Gone” video as a “Must See,” I felt vindicated because I had discovered this “Must See” a full month before Entertainment Weekly. I had proof that I was cool before cool was cool.

The biggest reason I don’t pour my heart out here as much as I used to is because my blog doesn’t feel as private as it did before. I always knew that the Internet was like going to the park and screaming the words from my diary out loud, but it didn’t hit home until I was laid off my job. I have a friend who hasn’t learned this lesson yet and it’s painful to watch her make my same mistakes all over.

What do I want?

I guess I want the impossible. I want to be anonymous again so I can write openly about my every thought. The fact of the matter is that NONE of us are anonymous. If you think you are anonymous, you are just deluding yourself. They can see exactly what IP your comments are coming from. They can take your words, run an analysis and see how closely they match everyone else’s. ALL anonymous blogs worth reading are eventually found out.

All I can do is write EXACTLY as much as I’m willing to share in the real world.

So, have you heard about the new cool video from the Ting Tings…

Did you know it wasn’t the original? Here’s the original.

Which do you like better?

Nicole Lee Analyzes the Weezer Video

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 1:12 pm

Nicole Lee went to the trouble of finding all the inside jokes on the Weezer Video for Pork and Beans:

She has a link to every YouTube reference in the whole video. Awesome work, Nicole!


Divine: Twistin’ the Night Away

Filed under: Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 12:21 pm

Divine: Twistin\' the Night AwayTo this day, I am still haunted by this conversational interlude at the beginning of the song:

Dad: Where are you going?
Divine: Out.
Dad: Out where?
Divine: Out to have a good time.
Dad: Oh? Can I come?
Divine: Only if you’re into it.
Dad: Into what?
Divine: Twistin’!

Whenever anyone asks me “Where are you going?” I ALWAYS answer with the word, “Out,” in the hopes that whomever asked will respond with the rest of the interlude. Never, not once, no one has ever known what the heck I was quoting.

I saw this album cover from Divine’s single “Twistin’ the Night Away” on the list of Worst Album Covers here:

Alongside rancid beehives of the McKeithen’s and the unseeing eyes of the Braillettes, I was angered and appalled that Divine’s classic remake was numbered among them. Don’t they know that EVERY time I hear another version of that song, I think to myself, “They’re doing it wrong. DIVINE knew how to sing that song!”

Of course, Divine would be so happy to see his album cover listed among the Worst. He was the best at being the best at the worst. Here is a photo montage of Divine to the song:

Where have all the drag queens gone? I remember when Divine came to Utah to perform, celebrated and loved. UTAH! Sometimes I hate reminiscing about the eighties with a passion, but times like these, I miss them.


Kidd Video and Kids Incorporated

Filed under: Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Wiped from my memory. Seriously. I don’t know how I blocked it so thoroughly.

If you had asked me a couple of days ago about Kidd Video, I would have shrugged my shoulders and shook my head. Kidd Video? What’s that? A video by Kid Rock, maybe?

Then you would have shown me this video on YouTube and all the memories would have come flooding back to me:

That crush I had on the lead singer? Yeah, it all came back full force.

“One sneeze and I’ll save you!”

My pre-teen mind never questioned the idea of a fairy dressed up as Olivia Newton-John with sneezing superpowers. I never gave it a second thought.

Kidd Video was a COOL show when I was in junior high. I liked it almost as much as Kids Incorporated, which I very vividly remember, no memory blocking there.

I SO wanted to be in a band and be cool like the kids from Kids Incorporated. I LOVED that show. Where are those kids now?

  • Marta Marrerro went on to become Martika in the late eighties.
  • Stacy Ferguson became Fergie from The Black Eyed Peas.
  • It looks like Rahsaan Patterson is still in the business as well.
  • Renee Sands provided the singing voice for Princess Fiona in the Shrek movies.
  • Jerry Sharell is managing American Idol artists now.

I’ve just spent a half hour looking at all the videos on YouTube from Kids Incorporated and I’m truly surprised how BAD they are. I LOVED that show and now I can barely watch it without cringing. How did my tastes change so much? I guess I’m glad that I’ve grown up, but I’m surprised that I ever liked that show at all. I feel almost betrayed by how cringe-worthy it is. In twenty years, will I feel the same about all the things I love right now?


Shoe Shopping with Stacey

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 11:05 am

It started with an Animal Crossing playdate with my sister and evolved
into a trip to Payless for cute and nearly disposable shoes.

“Of course you know I’m going to put these on the minute we get out to
the car.”

“I was going to ask you if you wanted to wear them out.”

A couple of quick changes later, we are now on a quest for a Nintendo
Wii. Fun day with sister!

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