Favorite Things of All Things

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 25th Anniversary Concert (still can’t find a good way to abbreviate that) was on TV the other night, and naturally I had to re-watch/re-live it.


Oh my gosh, we were all so nervous for Artie when they starting singing this song (his voice is not so magnificent these days) but he nailed it! I love this version…Paul’s verse is great, AND THEN THE HARMONIES. I can barely handle it. And then Paul being so happy for Art at the end, AWWW.

[Side note: Do you think they consulted each other about their outfits that night? Did Art Garfunkel see Paul Simon in a blazer and say, “I think I’ll go with the Hawaiian shirt, then”?]

The whole thing made me realize that I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of watching S&G’s performance from that night. It is one of my favorite things of all things, a phrase that Lauren introduced me to on the drive down from the bay area.

It being the end of the year and all, I’ve had some time to ruminate on it lately, and wanted to share a few more of my Favorite Things of All Things. Such as…

And since it’s the end of 2013, here are some of my Favorite Things of 2013:

I’ll come back and add more if I think of them. Anyone else have any favorites (from 2013 or all time)?

On self-restraint (and Star Trek movies)

There came a point a few weeks ago when Alex and I decided that we were wasting our lives away on the Internet. I think it came about on a Saturday night, after realizing we’d spent the latter half of the day on Reddit/YouTube/Tumblr/etc., without even stepping foot outside. Normally I’m ok with nights like that after a long work day, but it’s inexcusable on a perfectly beautiful San Francisco weekend. At that point we vowed to not use our computers for anything other than work, and in an amazing display of self-restraint, we managed to stay away from mindless web-surfing for a week (don’t laugh; for us it’s a long time). It actually felt like being on vacation/staycation, because without the Internet, my mind was suddenly opened up to doing things like exploring the neighborhood, making (slightly more) elaborate meals, and decorating the apartment. You know, real-life things.

Of course, we made no rules about Netflix-watching and video game-playing. So that meant that Star Trek marathons were most definitely on.

And marathon we did.

That week, whenever we were not exploring and dinner-making and decorating, we watched all 6 Original Series movies, and it was marvelous. It’s probably a good thing I wasn’t tweeting/blogging after every movie (you’d hate me, I’m sure). Instead I frantically jotted notes in my paper journal, which I will now present to you complete with YouTube supplementals:


Star Trek I: The Motion Picture

  • “How much time can we use up with really drawn-out shots of the Enterprise?” Answer: at least 20 minutes.
  • Bones’ first appearance in the film was probably my favorite part. Crazy cool medallion!
  • The Big Reveal at the end was also pretty sweet. I’m a bigger fan of science than I thought.

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

  • Maybe, just mayyybe, my favorite parts of this movie were the ones where everyone seems like normal people, e.g. when Kirk puts on his glasses or when Spock gives Kirk a book for his birthday.
  • Khan’s manboobs are impressive.
  • The Khan yell was largely disappointing. I think Into Darkness gave me unrealistic expectations.
  • I’ll go ahead and say it: I cried at the end. The last 20 minutes are basically an emotional rollercoaster.
  • Seriously though, Kirk’s glasses are my new favorite thing. I’m glad someone on YouTube thinks the same.

Star Trek III: The Search for Sass Spock

  • In which the crew of the Enterprise goes rogue (and Sulu finally gets to kick some ass!)
  • Who knew that Christopher Lloyd was a Klingon lord???
  • Favorite Scotty quote (of all time?): “Up your shaft!”
  • What happened to Kirk’s glasses? :(

Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home a.k.a. The Best Movie Ever Filmed In SF??

  • Spock’s mom is the bomb.com.
  • I could tell you the main plot of this movie, but you probably wouldn’t believe me. Luckily, it’s all explained in less than one minute here.
  • Everything about this scene is gold, but the music is really the icing on the cake.
  • The only one with a blooper reel. Leonard Nimoy is just the best.

Star Trek V: The Final Frontier

Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

  • First Kirstie Alley, then Kim Cattrall? Who else got their start playing a Vulcan?
  • Not a fan of whenever there’s two Kirks. It makes me so uncomfortable.
  • How does everyone have such beautiful signatures?? (I’m looking at you, DeForest Kelley)
  • I’m so sad it’s over. :(

And just like that, we’re now onto The Next Generation! We’re three episodes in and I’m loving the new crew (I can’t wait to meet Data’s cat!!). But something tells me that I’m always going to have a soft spot for Kirk and the gang…and the original theme song…and the original Enterprise.

I can’t believe how (much more) nerdy I’ve gotten since starting to watch Star Trek. And the great thing is, the fandom is pretty much endless. I could go on but I’ll leave it at this, because it’s 12:21AM on Christmas morning and I should be getting to bed.

Nikki out.

Christmas break means more posts like this

So here’s a random thing to know: yesterday, Lauren and I realized that the time it takes to listen to the entire Police discography (we’re “studying” for an upcoming concert) is roughly equal to the time it takes to drive from Bakersfield to Oceanside. For reference, that’s 70-something songs over 190 miles, or about 4 hours driving time. Yeah, I’m pretty impressed too (it’s a lot of time to spend listening to Sting’s voice).

But anyway, as we were driving past miles of Joshua trees and creepy windmills, rewinding to listen to the literary references in “Don’t Stand So Close To Me”, the whole thing made me wonder…

How long would one have to drive to cover, say, the entire Beatles catalog?

[ENTER: Christmas Break Nikki, who suddenly has a lot of time on her hands and wants to spend it all writing weird blog posts!]

I started trying to figure it out while on the drive – which would’ve been a much more lofty goal – but eventually left it until I got home so I could consult the Goog.

To begin, the Beatles recorded 288 songs, 213 of which were original (according to the search I just did [alas, my Beatles knowledge is not vast enough to know this information on my own]). I’m too lazy to sit and add up all the actual albums lengths, so…averaging all the recorded songs out to 3 minutes each (although a lot of the earlier ones were more like 2 minutes), you get 864 minutes, or 14.4 hours, OR, a little less than the distance between:

     – Los Angeles and Denver (Google maps says 14 hours, 33 min)

     – San Francisco and Vancouver
     – Boston and Chicago

As Spock might say: “Fascinating.”

Also according to the internets, the Rolling Stones recorded 437 songs. I’m going to go a little higher and estimate that the average length of a Stones song is 3.5 minutes (again, pure estimation/laziness). That puts us at 25.5 hours, which could take you from San Diego to New Orleans, San Francisco to Kansas City, or Nashville to Las Vegas.

So the obvious question is…..who wants to road trip with me and find out?? 2014 resolution, maybe?

For the record, I still know nothing of Sting’s solo career, so we will probably have to do this again before the Paul Simon/Sting concert on February 17.

In case you were wondering how I spent Thanksgiving weekend

[The scene: eating pizza at Urbn in downtown Vista, wondering what to do over the weekend]

Lauren: “When we were in high school, what did we do for fun?”

Nikki: “Go to the Krikorian….and make videos, mostly.”

The result: STAR TREK VINES.

1. JT Kirk beams aboard. So glad I kept my old flip phone!

2. Sylvia the cat. Taken directly from the first 14 seconds of this clip. Context is for losers.

3. Redshirt gets speared. Taken from The Galileo Seven (we didn’t have two matching yellow shirts).

So happy to have the participation of Lauren (Vista video veteran who also provided most props) and Alex (new to the video-making, but quick to catch on!) in this endeavor.

Any recommendations for future vines are welcome. I think this one is promising, but we have to get creative in making the flying parasites….

TOS: End of Series Reflections

So, after a post-Thanksgiving mini-marathon (and 6 months of prior watching), we’ve finally reached the end of The Original Series. It was a great stretch too: the last few episodes include Spock playing the piano, Spock playing the lute with a bunch of space hippies, Abraham Lincoln beaming aboard, and a villain that looks like a pile of lasagna. Classic TOS.

While part of me is super pumped for the 70s/80s movies (KHAAAAAAAN!) and The Next Generation, the other part is sad that I’ll never again be able to watch a TOS episode for the first time and marvel at its campiness or wonder if Kirk will make out with yet another girl (it’s pretty much guaranteed). Despite the silliness, there are certain episodes that really stuck with me, and thanks to Netflix I can pretty much watch them anytime I want, so I guess I can’t be too upset.

Some overall favorite episodes from Seasons 2-3:
Amok Time. Involves a pretty epic Kirk/Spock fight scene on the Planet Vulcan, enough said.
Elaan of Troyius. Klingons, dilithium crystals, knife-throwing, makeout sessions, and SO MUCH SASS (yes, I just retweeted myself in a blog post).
Assignment: Earth. They introduced some cool new characters in this one, but it’s unfortunately the only time we ever see them.
I, Mudd. The crew members of the Enterprise are surprisingly good at acting, at least when it comes to outsmarting androids.
The Trouble With Tribbles. I mean, come on.
For the World Is Hollow, and I Have Touched the Sky. Just so much Bones love in this episode.

Speaking of Bones love, I had the video below saved in my YouTube playlist, and after watching it again recently, realized how much more subtle (and awesome) the writing was in the first season. I feel like by the 2nd and 3rd seasons, the characters had all become a little exaggerated, especially Bones (i.e. The Grumpy Doctor Who Will Argue With Spock At Any Chance). But in the first season, the writers seem to have been more interested in character development/background, which is totes obvi in these little interactions between Kirk and McCoy. Ahhh I love it.

(Shirtless Kirk and random spinning cube are just added bonuses:)

To end with, a few more additions to the TOS Drinking Game…

One drink:
-Someone is wearing something that could be a winter drumline uniform
-The crew beams down to a planet that is supposedly uninhabited (but is inhabited by several life forms which happen to be villains)
-Bones is extremely grumpy
-There is a countdown (“how much time do we have before collision?” “precisely 8 minutes 37 seconds”)
-Kirk wears the green v-neck
-Something hits the Enterprise and everyone on the bridge falls over
-Bones & Spock argue
-Kirk is amused by Bones & Spock arguing
-“He’s dead, Jim”

Two drinks:
-Scotty saves the ship
-Spock falls in love
-Kirk punches/kicks/chops someone without warning

-The series ends :(

Stay tuned for the movie marathoning. It’s going to be awesome.