American Idol Season 14 Changes

As you may have seen on television (that thing that kills time while your phone is charging), American Idol is about to enter its FOURTEENTH season (another year and it can get its learners driving permit), and like any show that has been on for so long, the team at Idol is implementing some changes to help attract new viewers and keep the old ones. Using my top-secret entertainment industry connections I was able to obtain a list of these changes for you, my loyal readers.

American Idol Season 14 Changes:

• American Idol’s infamously rotating cast of celebrity judges will bump up from rotating every season to now rotating every 15 minutes. Things get especially dramatic when Mark McGrath gives the approving vote to put a contestant through to Hollywood only to have the “rotate judge” alarm go off, with replacement judge Kevin Federline voting the other way for the unlucky contestant.

• In addition to searching for talent in New Orleans, Nashville, San Francisco, Minneapolis, and New York City; the show will also be holding its trademark ten-thousand-person auditions in Metropolis, Atlantis, The Emerald City, Mount Olympus, The Alternate 1985 timeline from Back to the Future 2, and The Negaverse from Sailor Moon.

• In an effort to boost ratings, American Idol will declare every show day also Opposite Day, turning their 1.7 into a 7.1 and “a 25% decrease” into “a 25% increase” and “beating a dead horse” into “entertainment.”

• Keith Urban has agreed to a cross-promotion with a hip, young clothing store, legally changing his name to Keith Urban Outfitters.

• Going to just start referring to itself in all graphics, conversations, and materials as “The Voice” and see if anyone notices.

• Taking its well-known list of mentors like Randy Jackson and Scott Borchetta and adding other legendary mentors such as The P90X Guy, Mister Miyagi, Mother Teresa, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Professor Dumbledore, Your High School English Teacher, Dina Lohan, Rafiki from Lion King, and Gandalf the Grey.

• End every show with one uncut five-minute block of lemmings mindlessly walking to their demise by the ton and see if even a single viewer picks up on the irony.

• Putting Carrie Underwood, Clay Aiken, and Taylor Hicks in fake Groucho disguise mustache-glasses and sneaking them back into the competition.

• Following up all eliminations with on-air, real-time executions of whoever is voted off that week.

• Brian Dunkleman.

• Do a Mythbusters-style special on whether or not Ryan Seacrest has ever said anything sincere with all that feigned enthusiasm in the past 13 years.

• Airing all episodes at once, Netflix style, to help induce binge watching like the kiddies enjoy so much these days.

• Regardless of what the votes say, just declaring Ruben Studdard the winner anyway.

…Should be a fun season!

Play on,
Dustin

casual pic of Brian Dunkleman, Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, and Randy Jackson

casual pic of Brian Dunkleman, Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, and Randy Jackson

…Want more Mind Bullets? New posts go up every Wednesday at noon PST (or as close to that as I feel like), and you can subscribe if you want them delivered right to your inbox! …Or if you’re too impatient to wait that long you can follow me on twitter, instagramyoutube (new videos every Monday), and my boring personal website. Whew, that’s a lot of self promotion…even I don’t like me enough to keep up with all that.

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The WORST Horror Movies of All Time

It’s February, the month of love, black history, groundhogs, and awards shows (and if they ever have an award show honoring the most lovely groundhogs in all of history, you can bet that event would take place in February). With the Academy Awards and love on the brain, it seemed like the right time to countdown the worst horror movies of all time. So here they are. (I’m not big on segues).

The WORST Horror Movies of ALL TIME

The Passion of the Christ
Blood! Guts! Zombies! While this movie contains all the staples of a good horror movie, it really fails to deliver that jump-from-your-seat terror that we’ve come to expect from modern horror movies. Mel Gibson just doesn’t have the directorial chops to pull off a horror movie of this magnitude, hopefully things will look up for his career after this misstep.

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
This may be a movie about a blood-thirsty alien that crashes into Earth with the intention of savagely devouring its inhabitants to slake its bloodlust, but the only thing that crashes and burns here is the idea that this alien could be a danger to anyone. Drew Barrymore as a child pulls off the screaming victim ok here, but ultimately the terror of this film just falls flat.

Toy Story 2
The much-anticipated follow-up to the terrifying legend about one boy’s dolls that come to life and terrorize an entire town, the sequel sadly doesn’t live up to the scare-levels of the original. With not nearly enough blood and gore for die-hard screamsters like myself, Toy Story 2 is at best not scary, and at worst infuriatingly tame. Some parts are even downright laughable. But in true horror movie fashion, once they get one sequel made they just start cranking them out nonstop, so don’t expect Toy Story 3 to be any better (and SHOCKER, there’s already a Toy Story 4 in the works. It’s the Saw franchise all over again).

Mary Poppins
The premise is a tried-and-true one: a supposed children’s caretaker flies into town on the wind of a dark spell and uses her evil magic powers to wreak havoc in the lives of all whom she encounters. Whether it’s trapping her young wards into mystical drawings, or imprisoning children in chimneys, this is one bad-news nanny, but that sadly doesn’t make up for a lack of scares that leave this movie feeling more like a walk in the park rather than a scream-filled fright-fest that viewers want. Even when the nanny summons her dark familiars like her demon-possessed umbrella harpy, or her chimney-sweep henchman, this movie fails to make you feel like there is ever any real danger afoot. Better luck next time, Scary Mary.

The Nightmare Before Christmas
Stop-motion animation can definitely make for some spooky movie-making, but this film about the dark lord of the netherworld rising to take-over Christmas for him and his dark minions feels more like a daydream than a true nightmare. Too many stockings, not enough stalkings for THIS horror-movie-lover.

The Little Mermaid
The well-known Hans Christian Andersen tale — about a young mermaid that wants to steal a part of a prince’s soul so she can get into Heaven but ultimately can’t bring herself to kill him, so she kills herself by throwing herself off a cliff into the craggy rocks of the seaside — FINALLY gets the big screen treatment it deserves. BUT unfortunately the Hollywood Machine does what it does best and totally ruins the source material with this horror movie. Say goodbye to Andersen’s trademark gory details about the Mermaid getting her legs split with a sword and having her tongue ripped out by the Sea Witch’s curse (and who could forget the cost of the spell, that any movement the Mermaid makes with her legs will feel like she is constantly walking on sharp knives), and instead get ready to see a Mermaid that’s so untrue to her source character that she doesn’t even commit suicide at the end. Just like the mermaids in HCA’s tale, this movie turns into sea-foam and fizzles away before we get the horror movie we wanted!

…Hope you got some ointment for those BURNS, would-be horror movies, maybe next time you won’t short us on the scares that we crave! ;) On the upside, I finally got my hands on the film adaptation of the famous Brothers Grimm’s scary story, Snow White, so I’m excited to let that one scream me to new heights of scariness (I’m especially excited to see how they depict the scene where Snow White and her prince force the Evil Queen into a pair of glowing-hot iron shoes and force her to dance until she drops dead as punishment for her attempted murders).

Play on,
Dustin

I haven't seen this horror movie yet, but I imagine it's a lot like Taken.

I haven’t seen this horror movie yet, but I imagine it’s a lot like Taken.

…Want more Mind Bullets? New posts go up every Wednesday at noon PST (or as close to that as I feel like), and you can subscribe if you want them delivered right to your inbox! …Or if you’re too impatient to wait that long you can follow me on twitter, instagramyoutube (new videos every Monday), and my boring personal website. Whew, that’s a lot of self promotion…even I don’t like me enough to keep up with all that.

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2015: The Year in Review

In our speed-focused modern society it’s getting harder and harder to be the first to do anything (I’m pretty sure I was first like and first comment on Taylor Swift’s instagram the other day…if only I could’ve thought of some way to let her know that, I’m sure she’d be interested) and you people come to my blog because I bring you what the people want, when they want it, before anybody else! And also for my Twilight fan fiction! (er wait, that’s my OTHER blog…). So with that in mind, I allow me to be the FIRST to present:

THE @OCDUSTINO 2015 YEAR IN REVIEW, 1/1/15:

MOVIES:
The only movie released so far in 2015, at midnight January 1, EVERYONE agrees that the absolute best movie of 2015 is The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death. Critics are already calling it “the only new movie released so far in 2015” and “technically playing in theaters near you.” Presumably a story about a woman that works at Hot Topic, the sequel is notable for being the first WiB movie to not star Daniel Radcliffe.

MUSIC:
The music of 2015 can be defined with one overwhelmingly popular genre: PARADE MUSIC. Whether it’s marching bands or pop stars you’ve never heard of lip-sycning their own tunes, 2015 was just chock full of all the music you’d expect from parades and football pre-game shows. The fans have spoken, and parade music was BIG in 2015 and it’s not going anywhere! Friends, start making your parade music mix CDs and Spotify playlists NOW, because this is one trend that will always feel SO 2015.

LIFESTYLE:
Whether it was headaches from the night before or still being drunk from the night before, it’s clear based on all evidence that 2015 is the year of the HANGOVER. Almost out of nowhere and universally adopted, it seems like I don’t have a single friend in 2015 that wasn’t full committed to hangover life.  That’s right, get your 64oz Gatorade, put on your sweatpants and park it on your couch with every intention of never moving and never drinking again, because that’s what 2015 is ALL ABOUT. Trouble keeping food down? No worries, nausea and inability to eat are some of the most 2015 things happening.

WORKPLACE:

A GIANT trend that took the country by storm in 2015 was almost everyone no longer goes to their jobs. Oh they’re still employed all right, but THE hot move in 2015 was that almost no one had to go into work! Experts estimate that almost 90% of US workforces haven’t even gone into work ONCE so far in 2015, and it looks like that’s just fine with millions of American citizens.

FOOD & DRINK:
Though many types of spirits were enjoyed, 2015 seemed to suddenly shift from normal drinking to almost exclusively champagne! It looks like almost everyone of legal drinking age in the US had at least one glass of champagne (if not many more ;), which marks a big shift from the usual beer, wine, and spirits diversity that American patrons usually enjoy on an average night. As far as food, it seemed like everyone was enjoying pizza and easy-to-process foods enjoyed with friends on the couch while nursing a hangover. So 2015 of them!

CALENDAR:
Whether you were throwing it back or just enjoying it like normal, it’s clear that Thursdays were THE in day for 2015! Every single day in 2015 has been a Thursday, and citizens are calling it the defining mark of the year. What will this mean for the school system and work week? One day we’ll know, and if this trend holds true, then that day will probably be a Thursday, like every day of 2015 has been thus far! Who saw that coming??

ECONOMY:
In another absolute shocker that has to be noted, 2015 brought us the trend of ALL BANKS AND FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS BEING CLOSED. That’s right, whether it’s checking, home loans, stocks, etc.; it doesn’t matter what bank or financial issue you had, because your bank was closed for every day of 2015! What will this mean for economic future? Is this tied to the new trend of employees not having to do work anymore? It looks like “banker’s hours” just became even better than they already were. ;)

SPORTS:
Bowl games, bowl games, bowl games! Apparently not content to play out an entire season, 2015 will be remembered for every day playing several high stakes college football games! Regardless of the results, fans loved that we got right to the bigtime action and fanfare that comes with bowl games! Thanks 2015, looking forward to continuing to see bowl games every day!

WELL, there you have it! The most complete (and more importantly, FIRST) review of 2015! What trends did you like most? What ones do you miss? And what do you think it means for 2016? I don’t know, but I’m excited to find out and continue to be NUMBER ONE for you and your yearly review needs!

Play on,
Dustin

2015: A Look Back

2015: A Look Back

…Want more Mind Bullets? New posts go up every Wednesday at noon PST (or as close to that as I feel like), and you can subscribe if you want them delivered right to your inbox! …Or if you’re too impatient to wait that long you can follow me on twitter, instagramyoutube (new videos every Monday), and my boring personal website. Whew, that’s a lot of self promotion…even I don’t like me enough to keep up with all that.

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Holiday Mashup — Dustin Heveron’s Less Good Versions of Well Known Songs

Just in time for Christmas (yes, I know it’s December 29th…I didn’t say WHICH Christmas), it’s a festively joyous holiday edition of Dustin Heveron’s Less Good Versions of Well Known Songs! Like many of you, I couldn’t decide on which holiday hero to sing about, so I combined them all into one seamless song in a brand new musical invention that I am calling a “mashup.” As always, if you love it, feel free to pass it around to your friends, family, and loved ones. Or if you hate it, pass it around to your enemies, coworkers, and in-laws. Merry Christmas.


Play on,
Dustin

…Want more Mind Bullets? New posts go up every Wednesday at noon PST (or as close to that as I feel like), and you can subscribe if you want them delivered right to your inbox! …Or if you’re too impatient to wait that long you can follow me on twitter, instagramyoutube (new videos every Monday), and my boring personal website. Whew, that’s a lot of self promotion…even I don’t like me enough to keep up with all that.

How DO You Deal with Sadness?

On the tumblr account I recently created (if you need me I’ll be over here, keeping up with ALL the hottest trends of 2007), someone asked the anonymous question:

Screen Shot 2014-12-11 at 9.49.35 PM
“How do you deal with sadness?”

Most tumblr questions I answer only insofar as they are interesting to me and/or present the opportunity to be funny via amusing myself and occasionally others (and so the circle of narcissism comes full…well, circle (I was in trouble like four words into that one)).

However, the above question struck me as one frequently on the minds of many young folk (and their not-so-young brethren such as myself), and seemed deserving of a slightly more in-depth answer than would befit the norms of that site. I’m fortunate because I’m generally one of the more positive humans I know, and I have primarily positive and uplifting people in my life, so I don’t find myself in this sort of situation very often. But when I do, it’s as potent as any other emotional state.

The answer (like all good answers), isn’t one answer. The answer is three answers. For me, at least. So far. It may be more by the time I’m done writing this thing out.

“How do you deal with sadness?”

Answer number one: I surround myself with the people, things, and activities that bring me joy.
This may seem the most obvious of the three, but the principle is simple: if you’re going to create an environment of sadness/negativity, you are going to have a lot of trouble not being sad. I’m not saying it’s not possible, you’re just creating more work for yourself than is necessary. I know sometimes when I get sad I don’t *feel* like being happy or being taken away from my world of wallowing (not to be confused with World of Wallowing, the less popular online role-playing game I invented), so instead of going right from sobbing to playing on the trampoline, it’s nice to have something in place that will act as a stepping stone, so instead of taking you from “depressed” to “overwhelmingly joyous” maybe it’s something that takes you from “depressed” to “pleasantly apathetic.” For me, it means instead of watching Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (a movie I absolutely love but does nothing to bolster my mood) — but also not being ready for the laugh-riot that is Anchorman or Dumb & Dumber — I might watch a sports documentary or a Wes Anderson film (sad but not too sad, comedy but not uproariously laugh-driven). The same is true with people; if you’re an introvert and you’re feeling down, you might not want to hit the super hip rager of a party that the popular kids are throwing, but maybe having a couple friends over to drink hot chocolate and watch Netflix (I like movies, if you haven’t gathered that already) would be enough to bolster your spirits. Maybe you’ll think it a bit passé, but I also enjoy reading with some calming but bright background music (classical, jazz, Anderson Cale) as an activity to counteract malaise.

Answer the second: I let God/Jesus do the heavy lifting.
This may not be a very popular or “cool” answer, but truthfully a lot of what gives me comfort when I’m sad or depressed is the hope that comes from relationship with Jesus as Savior. It removes a lot of the pressure that I put on myself or my successes/failures or my environment/circumstances to provide me with happiness and/or a sense of purpose, and lets me rest easy in the hope of Christ. Ultimately, the foundation of my joy comes from the wellspring of eternal love that is God, and all of life’s earthly concerns and sad matters fall into appropriately-lesser perspective by comparison.

Answer three: I don’t.
I don’t want to seem like I’m promoting the idea of wallowing in one’s own sadness, but a myth that is incorrectly perpetuated is that one needs to find a *solution* to sadness at all. The truth of the matter is that in many intense instances (death of a loved one, loss of a career, eviction, etc.), heavy sadness is a very real and very necessary response. And the same is true with lesser sad events as well. Your body is built to respond with sadness as a way to respond and reflect, and I find that meditating through the sad times can be a healthy and effective way to process and learn from sadness. If you broke your leg, you wouldn’t begrudge your body the time it needed to heal & repair, and the same is true for your emotional body as well. So oftentimes when I’m struck with sadness, I’ll let it run its course, spend some time in prayer and reflection, and let it provide the sharp contrast that makes my happiness all the brighter.

So, my anonymous occasionally-sad chum, maybe some of this is helpful to you, maybe it’s not, but either way this is how I process through the sad times, and it works for me. And if none of that helps, there’s always alcohol. Please drink responsibly.

Play on,
Dustin

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…Want more Mind Bullets? New posts go up every Wednesday at noon PST (or as close to that as I feel like), and you can subscribe if you want them delivered right to your inbox! …Or if you’re too impatient to wait that long you can follow me on twitter, instagram, tumblryoutube, (new videos every Monday), and my boring personal website. Whew, that’s a lot of self promotion…even I don’t like me enough to keep up with all that.

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