Saturday, May 22, 2010

For Your Entertainment

I may be a latecomer and you may already know about the following, but they're just too good not to mention:

1) Stieg Larrson--"The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," "The Girl Who Played With Fire," and "The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest"--is my current favorite author.   After reading Tess Gerritsen's books and other similar "female murder victim" books (see my "Cake and Blood" blogpost), I decided to boycott such novels.  I have a big bag of books from friends/relatives and as I weeded out the offensive books, I was left with "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo."  I read the synopsis on the back and seeing reference to a missing girl, I was about to set it aside, but heck, it was the last book left AND it was set in Sweden!  I really like Sweden and Swedes and decided to make an exception so I could "travel" to Sweden at last.

Wow, I'm very glad I didn't toss out this book.  It had me up until the wee hours in bed with my little book light.  It's a suspenseful, oh-so-satisfying read with all the elements of the perfect thriller.  I love the mystery, strength and genius of the Girl (Lisbeth Salander) and the integrity and steadfastness of Mikael Blomkvist, the journalist who is the main male character (he could be Stieg Larrson himself from what little I know of him).  I just finished the second book of the trilogy but will take my time getting the third, since sadly, that's all there is and will be. *sniff*

Stieg Larrson, a magazine editor, wrote the three books in his spare time then died suddenly of a heart attack just before they were published.  According to Martha Woodroof of NPR, Larrson was a "crusading anti-fascist journalist who was passionate in his support of anyone being victimized."  I can't tell you how sad I feel that he didn't live to see his books become bestsellers, then subsequently made into movies in Sweden. (There are plans for an American movie.)  Not only is it a huge loss of a great novelist and a courageous journalist, but he was born in 1954 so he was my "classmate," so to speak.

2) Russell Peters--is an Anglo-Indian comedian from Canada.  Look for him on Comedy Central or YouTube.  Funnnnnny!  It was given that I'd like him because I like Bollywood, Indians, and the Indian accent, but Leonard really enjoyed his comedy too.  His comedy is based mostly on the different races, similar to Hawaii's Andy Bumatai and Frank DeLima.  Check him out!

3) I doubt I have to tell you that the new Sex and the City movie will be released next week, but I just found out that Liza Minnelli is making a cameo appearance singing, of all things, Beyonce's "Single Ladies." Too funny!! I've been a fan of Liza's since the 70's and "Cabaret." I was lucky enough to see her twice in concert and she was amazing.  Although I read some disparaging remarks about her singing "Single Ladies," I heard it and loved it as simply something fun.  It's not as though she recorded it as a single, hoping to get on the charts, after all.  Before you go to hear her on this page, be forewarned if you want to know NOTHING about the movie because there's a small spoiler (I don't consider it a big deal really) that explains what she was doing in the movie.

Speaking of SATC, if you're in Vegas and enjoy slot machines, be sure to look for the SATC penny video slot machines. I played them at the Fremont and at Fitzgerald's.   What I loved were the fun bonuses and video snippets from the show!  Be prepared, however, to spend some money.  You might put in $20 and hit no bonuses and poof!  your twenty is gone in three minutes.  On the other hand, when you do hit a bonus it's SATC heaven: depending on the bonus, you get to look at shoes, bags, dresses, wedding gifts, see your favorite characters, etc.   In one of my sessions, I started hitting bonuses immediately and walked away with $150 after almost an hour.  Even better, I sat next to a fellow SATC fan and we enjoyed each other's bonuses, cheering noisily (well ok, you know me, I'm not noisy, but she made me chant "Mr. Big, Mr. Big, Mr. Big!" whenever one of us got a wheel spin.)  Check out this photo I found, by the way...hmm that guy looks familiar...and if you want to see a video of the slot machine itself, along with Chris Noth introducing it, click here.

I hope at least one of the above entertains you!  You deserve it!

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