I've been finding myself staying up later than I should these past few months - sometimes 2 to 3 a.m. Don't know if it's sheer panic and anxiety about how the paper will look the next morning or if I overlooked something. But I tend to be sitting up into the wee hours of the morning anyway. And usually I'm in front of my laptop at home (as if I don't get enough of being in front of a computer during the day).
So besides reading, I'm watching videos on YouTube or Hulu. And I made a happy discovery a few weeks ago - several full-length episodes of "Mystery Science Theater 3000" as well as many of the "shorts" (short films, usually educational ones from the 1950s on "what to do on a date" or "how to have good posture"). I own a few DVD sets of the show that originated in Minnesota and have checked out a few through interlibrary loan. It was an interesting concept - a man and a couple of robots are stuck in a space station and forced to watch bad, cheesy, mostly science fiction movies by the resident bad guys. And they would make fun of the movie ("riffing"). It first started with host Joel Hodgson and then in later years, it was Mike T. Nelson. The "resident bad guys" even changed from Dr. Clayton Forrester and TV's Frank to Pearl, Forrester's mother. The show had a good run - 11 years and 198 episodes. Some of those involved with the show went on to similar projects - "The Film Crew," which included just four movies and now RiffTrax on the Internet, which is riffing-only audio tracks one can play while watching a movie, like "Twilight" or "Star Wars." There are also a few RiffTrax DVDs out where you don't have to synch up the audio with the video. I personally only have one - "The House On Haunted Hill," featuring the late great Vincent Price.
I'm always amused by either Minnesota or Wisconsin references the guys make while watching these bad movies. For example, "The Giant Spider Invasion" starring the Skipper from "Gilligan's Island," Alan Hale Jr. and Barbara Hale from "Perry Mason," had the guys going "Packers!" in several scenes where the characters tend to be running places; mainly away from the humungous spiders.
Earlier this week, Ghent native Tenessa Gemelke was featured on TLC's "What Not To Wear." I wasn't able to watch because I was working and I also don't have cable. And TLC doesn't put full episodes of the show on its website and there are only clips on Hulu. But while doing a search on YouTube on "What Not To Wear," I stumbled on the time Mayim Bialik of "Blossom" and "Big Bang Theory" was made over on the show. And the entire episode was available (albeit in five parts, but it was there). There I was at 1 in the morning as I watched Clinton Kelly and Stacy London ambush Bialik on the streets of New York. Bialik's fashion sense tended to sway more toward the hippie or Goodwill look with long skirts, shirts that were baggy and too big for her and her long, straggly hair. She admitted that she's very low-maintenance and was wearing clothing her grandmother once wore. Oh how I could relate, with the exception of the granny clothes. Bialik likes "quirky" clothes and when she went shopping for new stuff after her former wardrobe was basically tossed away, that was her criteria, finding the items that made her happy, but the hosts of "What Not To Wear" cringe. What a hoot!
And I have made another happy discovery Wednesday night...Kevin Smith's "Too Fat For 40" and "Kevin Smith's Threevening" in their entirety. Just what this random insomniac ordered.