Meanwhile, at the Legion of Decency ...

When American Catholics began the National League of Decency in 1933, you had to recite the following pledge to become a member: I wish to join the Legion of Decency, which condemns vile and unwholesome moving pictures. I unite with all who protest against them as a grave menace to youth, to home life, to country and to religion. I condemn absolutely those salacious motion pictures which, with other degrading agencies, are corrupting public morals and promoting a sex mania in our land. ... ... (read more)

Sir Not Appearing in This Film

Screen credit for Sir Not Appearing in this Film I watched Monty Python and the Holy Grail again this weekend with my son and nephew, who at 11 and 14 are the perfect age to appreciate the Knights Who Say Nee and a rabbit who brings "death with nasty, big, pointy teeth" but not quite old enough for the rescue of Sir Galahad the Chaste from the peril he faced in Castle Anthrax. Sir Lancelot: We were in the nick of time. You were in great peril. Sir Galahad: I don't think I was. Sir ... (read more)

Larry the High Voltage Cable Guy

An Imax documentary, Straight Up: Helicopters in Action, includes this three-minute segment on an insane but technologically amazing profession: high voltage cable inspection. ... (read more)

Victory Declared in the Battle for Wargames.Com

The National Arbitration Forum just released its decision in Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. World Readable c/o R.L. Cadenhead, the domain-name dispute in which the film studio tried to take Wargames.Com away from me because it owns a trademark related to the 1983 film WarGames and the upcoming sequel WarGames 2: The Dead Code. A three-member panel of arbitrators denied MGM's claim on the grounds that I established my legitimate interest in selling wargames at the domain: The picture that ... (read more)

The Digger Diggs, and Having Dugg Moves On

When Ryan Tomayko's blog was linked recently on Digg, he was so freaked out by the experience he wrote some code to reject all Digg traffic: The funny thing about Digg is that it changes the way people read. The average Digger seems to assume that people write stuff solely for the purpose of making it to the Digg front page. ... No one knows you there so you have to write in a way that is completely void of who you are and what you're about. That sucks. I'd rather just opt out of the popularity ... (read more)

Red Herring: The War Over Wargames.Com

Red Herring interviewed me for a news article on the war over Wargames.Com. The story's pretty fair, though I was never uncertain about what I wanted to do with the domain. I've been playing wargames since Dungeons & Dragons was still considered a wargame in the late '70s. She covers my background in the article: Two years ago, Mr. Cadenhead registered When the new pope announced his new name, the website saw 500,000 hits in two days. Mr. Cadenhead decided to donate the ... (read more)

My Battle with MGM Over Wargames.Com

For the past three months I've been privately engaged in a time-consuming dispute with Nathan J. Hole, a lawyer representing MGM Studios who claims that Wargames.Com, a domain that I've owned since April 16, 1998, is the rightful property of the film company because it produced the 1983 movie WarGames and registered it as a trademark. I received an e-mail this morning indicating that MGM has filed a legal complaint with the National Arbitration Forum to take the domain name away from me. I ... (read more)

Can't Stop the Dance? Edit Your Hosts File

I've resisted the urge to use any ad blocking software, since I'm a web publisher who supports my sites through advertising. I finally broke down today because of the dancing people who want to refinance my mortgage. These ads for LowerMyBills.Com bore into your brain like the Ceti eel on The Wrath of Khan. Upon emergence, the eel larva could enter the ear of a larger animal, where it wrapped itself around the cerebral cortex. This caused the host extreme pain and rendered them extremely ... (read more)

'Red Eye' Flight: Aisle Seat, Window Seat or Terrorist?

The 2005 thriller Red Eye, starring Rachel McAdams and Cillian Murphy, has a narrow premise: The guy sitting next to a hotel manager on an overnight flight turns out to be a terrorist who blackmails her into helping facilitate a politician's assassination. I enjoy films that are set up in a way that makes you wonder how they can possibly tell a story. Most of the film takes place between two characters in one aisle of a plane, and it isn't easy for Murphy to menace the poor woman in between ... (read more)

Rob Lowe, Snow White and the Academy Awards

The infamous opening number to the 1989 Academy Awards, which featured Snow White and Rob Lowe and killed the career of show producer Allen Carr, turned up on YouTube: Seeing this for the first time, I thought the opening was campy, hokey and overdone, but that seemed like the point. You don't line up a dozen dancing tables with lampshade heads and a chorus line of male ushers belting out "whenever you're down in the dumps, try putting on Judy's red pumps" without knowing you're completely over ... (read more)