Blog Archive

Is It Really Cheating . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Thursday, November 30, 2006 21 comments

{This is the second in a recurring series which will explore the brutally complex concept of monogomy in increasingly outlandish scenarios. We hope these will be illuminating what-if scenarios, and that they will cultivate some intense philosophical discussions around what, if anything, really constitutes cheating.}

Is It Really Cheating If:

You fly to Las Vegas for a convention, and feeling a bit lonely, decide to make use of the free book of hookers which are handed out everywhere on the Strip.

Having just won $500 at the Blackjack tables, you pay for two working girls to come to your hotel room and touch each other while you merely sit on a chair in the corner of the same room and touch yourself.

Is this cheating?


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$2 Dollar Productions Goes For $250,000 . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Wednesday, November 29, 2006 20 comments

The deed has been done, and the fat will soon be in the fire because 2 Dollar Productions has just received a long shot at fame, fortune and bragging rights that will be used in conversations for the next 50 years.

That's right - we've officially been accepted as applicants for the second season of VH1's World Series of Pop Culture contest.

I happened to catch the first season, and at the time, I thought here is a contest for me to funnel my useless knowledge into something that pays out $250,000 to the winning team.

By a stroke of luck or fate depending on your point of view, one of the six casting cities for this next incarnation was Austin, TX and after filling out a lengthy (3+ pages) resume complete with picture, we just got a confirmed time for a mid-Febraury try-out.

My favorite resume answer I gave was to a question concerning 3 reasons why I felt that 2 Dollar Productions wanted to participate in the contest. That was simple I wrote, they would be:

1) To crush our enemies
2) To see them driven before us
3) To hear the lamentations of the women

If anyone knows where I stole that line from, I'm impressed and if not, this should help:

Surprisingly enough, our contest name will be 2 Dollar Productions, but 3 members are required to fill out a team, so my brother and I drafted one of his friends who is strong in music trivia to shore up our somewhat shaky knowledge.

Teams are strongly suggested, though not required, to dress somewhat alike, and we have decided to have t-shirts made with pictures of a couple of one dollar bills in the middle, "$2 Dollar Productions" written above the bills and "You Know You Want It" scrawled below the cash.

In addition, we are in the market for some really cheap and sleazy pastel linen jackets and even worse-looking loafers which will be worn sock-less with jeans.

We are also planning on having extra t-shirts made, so Xmas might come early for some lucky readers.

The selection process goes like this: All 3 team members take a written pop culture test and if we pass, then we meet with producers who determine if we get to compete with 7 other teams from Austin. If we win the Austin contest outright then we automatically get to go to New York for the actual game taping in March.

But even if we lose, the producers still have the choice to bring 1 - 2 teams out to NYC anyway if they think you'll make for good TV.

The game format pits a competitor from each team against one another with 5 questions each being asked from a particular category such as Tom Cruise movies or movie taglines or Old-School Rap.

A sample question from last year's show was:

Q: What name did Tom Cruise have to give to be admitted to the mansion orgy in "Eyes Wide Shut?"

A: Fidelio.

I knew it then and I know it now and if I ever set up an orgy, I will use the same password.

This will be far from easy, however, as a lot of these teams from last season were total trivia geeks whereas we simply have a head for remembering obscure things from movies, tv and music.

Some study hours will definitely be logged before February, but for now, we will revel in the opportunity and begin making inquiries into the linen jackets and finalizing our t-shirt design and production.

You know - the important stuff.


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Don't Kid Yourself - It's Over . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Tuesday, November 28, 2006 13 comments

If you had less than six months for the demise of the Pam Anderson/Kid Rock marriage then it's time to cash in because the former "Baywatch" vixen has filed for divorce citing the always-popular "irreconcilable differences.".

Anderson married the former rap-rock act turned country-ish singer on a yacht moored near St. Tropez, France, with Elton John, Cindy Crawford, and other celebrity pals on hand. The duo then exchanged vows again in the U.S. a few weeks later.

It is unclear whether they will also have two divorces.

Call me crazy, but I thought if anyone could make it that it would be these two lovebirds. Actually, I think that Tommy Lee and his giant horsecock ruined Anderson for other men a long time ago.

I don't know if it was strictly his penis that did the trick, however, as any viewer of their sex video can attest, Pam seemed mighty impressed that Lee could not only use it as a tool for pleasure, but that 'lil Tommy could also drive their motorboat across the water.

And I can't say I blame her because it impressed me as well, and outside of his ability to drum, it might be Tommy's most marketable trait.

This is merely a guess on my part as I haven't seen any confirmation of it on the hard news outlets like "People" magazine, but if two people as classy as Kid Rock and Pam Anderson can't make it in this world, what chance do the rest of us have?

I'm going to unzip my pants and take a drive to ponder it.


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Is It Really Cheating If . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Monday, November 27, 2006 21 comments

{This is the first in a recurring series which will explore the brutally complex concept of monogomy. We hope these will be illuminating what-if scenarios, and that they will cultivate some intense philosophical discussions around what, if anything, really constitutes cheating.}

Is It Really Cheating If:

You wear linen pants and no underwear to a strip club and pay for 15 consecutive lap dances during which time there is enough grinding to "Welcome to the Jungle" that you consequently make a mess of the linen (a notoriously tricky fabric to maintain)?

The forum is open.


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2 Dollar Productions Gives Thanks . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Sunday, November 26, 2006 17 comments

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and even the leftovers are barely hanging by a thread.

But that doesn't mean there isn't still cause to be thankful. It's a busy, brutal world out there, which makes it easy to forget about things that matter and that nobody should take for granted.

So, with that in mind, my brother and I spent our 5 hour drive back to Austin discussing exactly what we were thankful for (in no particular order):

1) Old friends

2) New friends
3) The Duckbilled Platypus

4) Sunsets in the Caribbean

5) Crotchless panties

6) Not being married to Tom Cruise
7) A firm belief in Santa Claus

8) Family
9) Not having Joe Simpson in your family
10) Guinness

11) Discipline

12) The Draft Horse in Austin...The Creative Base of 2 Dollar Productions.

13) The Collected Works of Hunter Thompson, John MacDonald, Ernest Hemingway, Harlan Ellison, Robert Parker, Nick Toches, Douglas Adams, Ken Kesey, Stephen King, Spider Robinson and Moly name a few.

14) Weird Al

15) Good Coffee

16) Classy pornography
16) High fiber
17) Our Special Lady Friends
18) Inside straights
19) Barbecue & Tex-Mex
20) Trains in Europe
21) Life-altering, mind-melting, religion-changing sexual prowess


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Yet Another Reason To Be Famous . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Saturday, November 25, 2006 13 comments

I was talking to someone about fame recently, the pros and cons, the pitfalls and traps, and the supremely wonderful benefits like this:

This is just another reason to grab for a little fame. If Lovitz had never been on SNL or in various films, I'd bet hard cash these beach bunnies (a bit of a stretch) would never just drop by to say hello to man who looked like Lovitz.

On the other hand, maybe they just really dig those Subway commercials he does.

Regardless, I see this picture and I think:

a) a little fame would be a good thing
b) what beach in the U.S. were they at where they could go topless
c) it doesn't appear that Lovitz is actually eating many of Subway's low-fat sandwiches that he's constantly pitching


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Quick Hit Friday . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Friday, November 24, 2006 9 comments

"If you want to look thin, hang out with fat people," - Rodney Dangerfield, "Back to School"

It's the Friday after Thanksgiving and you couldn't pay us enough to go anywhere near a shopping mall, so let's check into some important things, although all I'd really like to do would be to have a large army of Oompa Loompas rub my stomach with oil until it feels better from the all the food consumed yesterday. Selah.

A mini-feud between Kelly Ripa and Clay Aiken broke out this week after Ripa claimed that the notoriously testosterone-charged singer was hostile toward her and not "respectful in any way" when he was on the show recently.

The breaking point came when Aiken put his hands over her mouth quiet the eternally perky Ripa, who was not amused and told the crooner that "Oh that's a no-no... I don't know where your hands have been."

I hate to even speculate about the possibilities, but would say that it's likely someplace I wouldn't want to go - which would also include an appearance on Ripa's show.

Robert Altman died this week, and his body of work was impressive ("Mash," "Nashville," "Short Cut," "The Player"). Even more than his movies, I always liked him for working outside the system and calling the studios on their bullshit, which is always something to admire.

Michael Richards publicly apologized for his racist tirade in an appearance on "The Late Show," saying he was "really busted up" by the whole thing.

If this debacle has proved anything at all it's that Kramer should have stuck to physical comedy because that was his bread and butter on "Seinfeld" as obviously speaking isn't doing him any favors at all.

Britney Spears has been hanging out with Paris Hilton in Vegas lately after filing for divorce from K-Fed.

It's hard to say who's wearing the pants in the relationship, however, they probably don't care when they're ripping the pants off of male strippers with their teeth and talking about the need to be respected as artists.

"When I go to Hollywood, I start at the Chateau Marmont and then I usually end up naked in [famed photog] David LaChapelle's studio taking crazy pictures. That's usually a night with me. Four or five in the morning, lying across a car in David's studio." - Pamela Anderson said to "Blender" magazine.

It's about the same for me. I start with a few innocent beers at the Draught Horse and then next thing I know I end up ordering Migas at Kerbey Lane and then passing out naked in their bathroom thus prompting some savage beating on the door and multiple profanities screamed in multiple languages. I understand Pam more than I ever thought possible.

I have always been a fan of the color blue, so let's end with a shade that is pleasing to my eye:

This picture definitely doesn't give me the blues, and I think I hear some leftover turkey calling my name and so . . . Happy Friday!


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Bathing With The Drunken Viking & Happy Early Thanksgiving . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Wednesday, November 22, 2006 13 comments

{This is the third of what will be a recurring series that will only happen when I have consumed far too much beer at the Draught Horse Tavern in Austin, TX with my brother. Tonight, for instance 2 pitchers of Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale were bought and paid for triggering strange thoughts, candid insights and pure horseshit. Selah.}

- I like to quote movie lines as much as the next person (It's so good. When it hits your lips, it's so good), but there has to be some real conversation sprinkled in the mix too.

- If you're in a public restroom and there are 3 empty urinals, you don't walk in and take the middle one forcing the next person to piss right beside you. It's called etiquette.

- You also never lean over to the guy taking care of business next to you and go "nice cock."

- I enjoy talking to myself to work over ideas and keep me focused, but if you start answering your own questions out loud it's probably time to go see a Doctor about some medication

- Doctors usually get a bad rap, but it's really dentists who are some of the most malicious bastards walking on two legs.

- I bet there are people out there who actually like it when a dog humps their leg. I am not one of those people.

- If I were a porn star, my working name would Winthorpe Cornelius Hammercock III. The III just lends it some nobility.

- A hot tub is a great place to start to get frisky, but a terrible venue to finish.

- I know Merchant-Ivory movies receive loads of critical acclaim, but for the most part they act like powerful sedatives for me and put me right to sleep.

- And speaking of sleeping, 2 Dollar Productions will be traveling to spend the holiday with family where the Internet does not roam and with that in mind, Happy Early Thanksgiving

Don't drink too much or stuff too much turkey down your throats and fall asleep in the tub - it gets awfully wet.


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Sometimes Its Just Too Close to Call

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Tuesday, November 21, 2006 9 comments

Normally, there is one member of the fairly-to-totally worthless celebrity club that will take it upon themselves to rise above (or lower beneath as the case may be) their fellow spotlight whores and become The Most Worthless for that week.

However, this week has been like the Heavyweight championship of stupid and awful events.

First, The Juice. Poor OJ can't catch a break this week as the mighty wraith of Rupert Murdoch squashed his hopes of both a television special and book in one fatal swoop. What is the world coming to when a man can't make money by proposing a hypothetical scenario as to how he would have murdered his wife and housemate if he had indeed murdered them...which he didn't. In all fairness, I think OJ has just given up and assumes he's already going to a special level of Hell, but the ass clowns at Fox and the publishing company owned by Fox should be strung up by their toe nails in Times Square for attempting to foist this awfulness on the public.

And, I have to mention it even though this subject is about as safe as handling an old stick of dynamite, but...Michael Richards. Watching Kramer implode in a five minute tirade against a heckler at his most recent stand-up show was a special kind of gut wrenching. There's not much need to expound on how crass, ignorant and terrible his actions were, so I'll try to find what few, small slivers of silver lining there may be in this situation. One, the audience members, I thought, handled themselves well. Once the shock wore off, people just seemed to leave the show. No chucking beer bottles or charging the stage. They conducted themselves with much more class than Richards deserved or displayed. Second, Jerry Seinfeld has proven to be a rather stand-up individual during his intro for Richards' apology on Letterman last night. Three, at least Richards has not put the blame for his actions on a drinking problem or drug addiction. Unlike Gibson, Foley and a host of other high profile people who have fucked up egregiously lately, Kramer did not immediately check himself into Betty Ford and issue a press release detailing his lifelong struggle with Jaegermeister. I guess that's something...not a hell of alot. But something.

I guess I'll have to call this one a draw. To both contestants, may your cases of syphillis be plentiful and may you always be pissing into the wind.


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When Things Head South . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Monday, November 20, 2006 14 comments

"I hope he gets fucked by a kangaroo and eaten by crocs." - Liza Minnelli, on ex-husband David Gest doing a Survivor-type reality show in Australia

I'm not sure what the worst fate would be: Getting banged by a Kangaroo, gulped by a crocodile or being married to Liza Minnelli?

It seems like a no-win situation, but regardless the quote does illustrate how ugly things can get when a relationship ends. And most don't finish well because if things were going good then you probably wouldn't be breaking up in the first place.

I can recall driving back after a pub crawl in college with my best friend when we saw huge flames shooting from our West Campus neighborhood.

I jokingly remarked that I hoped the source was my recent ex-girlfriends apartment complex, and when we walked toward the flames, I soon realized that this was indeed the case.

At the time, I chalked it up to bad karma, however, I do feel this might be have been a bit harsh in retrospect. I also have an iron-clad alibi in case anyone feels like making any unfounded accusations.

Stories like that are the tip of the iceberg when it comes to calling things off with someone.

There can be tears, punches and articles of clothing thrown out of doors. Drunken and slanderous accusations left on voicemails are always popular too.

I always enjoyed a good old fashioned stick-your-tongue-down-some-strangers-throat in front of your ex, which was sometimes difficult to successfully execute and at other times easier than Tara Reid after 3 shots of Jaggermeister.

Whatever the situation prompted, however, I never brought a kangaroo into the mix. Then again, I'm not from Australia, so it's possible it constitutes more of a geographical limitation than one of the imagination.

I certainly hope so because when a break-up is really getting sour I would have paid at least $2 to watch a kangaroo have it's way with one of my exes.

And possibly charged admission.


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Thoughts On "Casino Royale" . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions 8 comments

Ever since Daniel Craig was cast as James Bond there has been a vocal contingent of fans denigrating everything from his blond locks to his rumored inability to properly operate a stick shift Ashton Martin.

But the Bond franchise desperately needed a new direction that focused on the character as the last few Pierce Brosnan vehicles were loaded with so many implausible and almost insulting FX shots that it was impossible to form any kind of attachment to the story or the characters operating inside of it.

Craig proves his mettle in "Casino Royale," which traces how James Bond got his license to kill as well as his inherent distrust of women outside the realm of a pleasureable romp in bedroom.

Following a reliably cool opening credits sequence, the movie wastes no time in throwing Craig into the action as he chases a wanted bomb-maker onto a construction site that finds the pair fighting and running and jumping all over some extremely high scaffolding, which ultimately concludes with the pair causing enough destruction to push the project behind by several months.

Unfortunately, this scene is the finest action sequence in the movie.

Despite the damage that 007 endures during this chase, the script is what really injures the newest Bond the most. The plot is loose and meandering and has something vaguely to do with terrorists (the Cold War is over and Bond movies are NOT better for it).

With no driving force to propel things along, director Martin Campbell, who also directed Brosnan in "Goldeneye," has problems with pacing and the middle of the film is bogged down in an exhaustive casino scene.

Gambling is an important element in many Bond films. The key to success, however, is tension and timing, which this film forgets. For one vast stretch we felt like we were watching the "Word Series of Poker" on ESPN when all we really wanted was to move the story along to somewhere else.

But every time the movie began sliding downhill, "Casino Royale" righted itself through a combination of sheer desire to break ranks with its predecessors, attitude, and blood.

Craig bleeds more in this film than all the other Bonds combined. Unlike Brosan, Dalton, Moore, Lazenby or Connery, he is pummelled, shot with a nail gun, sliced, diced and has his manhood literally crushed in a torture scene that is more unnerving than anything seen in "Hostel."

Most Bond traditionalists are not used to seeing their favorite secret agent so roughed up, but this is a different film and a new chapter for the man who "women want and men want to be."

No exchange makes those differences more apparent than when Craig orders his martini.

Bartender: "Would you like your martini shaken or stirred."

Bond: "Do I look like I give a damn?"

No he doesn't, and the "Casino Royale" is better for it as Craig puts the movie on his back during the times when he's not returning the favor with Eva Green or Caterina Murino.

Both women play Bond Girls, but Green takes center stage. She handles herself capably as she and Craig display some solid chemistry together.

And although Judi Dench doesn't qualify for this category, it's nice to see her merely busting balls and chewing scenery versus trolling for Oscars.

Bond movies can be counted on for exotic locales, gorgeous women and action. "Casino Royale" doesn't diasppoint in any of those areas, and much like "Batman Returns" last year, the new incarnation has breathed life into a franchise that had gone stale.

Craig puts to rest any concerns that he can handle his 007 status, however, we only hope that the next Bond movie provides him with a plot capable of matching his talents.


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Up On The Mountain Vol. 8 . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Saturday, November 18, 2006 17 comments

{Editor's Note: This is a semi-regular series of high-water mark performances that spans movies, television, books and life its ownself.}

Stephen King is a prolific writer, and although you could argue for The Gunslinger series or The Stand as his best work, I would have to nominate IT for that title.

IT is a massive book (more than 1,000 pages) that traces an unspeakably evil clown (more or less) and the terror that IT unleashes on Derry, a small town in Maine (shocking). The story is mostly told through a group of seven friends or The Loser's Club as they referred to themselves as children who battle this monster called IT, and are later called back as adults to finish the job.

The novel starts with the killing of a small boy, an event which energizes and sets into motion the story as this group of misfits is pulled together during a momentous summer that changes them all forever.

IT is a shape-shifter that has an uncanny ability to use your worst fears against you, whether that be a werewolf or a clown or leper. These things make sense given your ability to indulge in quite a few irrational fears as you grow up.

What pushes the book over the top for me is that the group of main characters are all interesting and likable, a grab-bag of kids from the fat outcast to the girl with an abusive father and yet they all lose their insecurities and problems when they're around each other. Their friendship seems genuinely real, and that is not easy to accomplish as well as something that I personally enjoy because good friends are not easy to find in literature or anywhere else.

These same childhood friends make a promise to each other to return to Derry if IT ever re-surfaces. Not surprisingly, this does happen and the honoring of this long-forgotten oath brings old friends back together to battle a childhood monster.

What I like about King, is that he doesn't make a world where everyone lives and things turn out perfect in the end. At least not all the time.

Sacrifices are made, and often demanded in his work with IT being no exception.

This story is propulsive, and although there is some definite padding (it is 1,000+ pages) the book does not feel overindulgent. There are more than enough interesting characters to use the pages and help flesh out their backgrounds.

It is also a very bittersweet novel, and I found the ending to be pretty damn sad. I'm not going to go into it for those who haven't or might want to read this book because if I waded through a plethora of pages and then some jack-ass gave away the finale I'd be more than a little pissed.

I'm not going to argue that King produces great literature, but the man can tell an excellent story. Like anyone else, some tales are better than others, but IT deserves a place at the top of the mountain for King as he weaves a tale of friendship, loss and fear that he will likely never top again.


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Quick Hit Friday . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Friday, November 17, 2006 15 comments

"Can I borrow your towel? My car just hit a water buffalo." - Chevy Chase, "Fletch"

Ahh, it's Friday again and the air is crisp and semi-cool for Austin, so let's recap the monumental achievements of the week which don't include new House speakers, mass kidnappings or presidential exploratory committees.

At 2 Dollar Productions, we cut right to the most crucial stories like:

Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes flew to Rome this week, and intend to get married in the romantic medieval castle of Odescalchi on the shores of Lake Bracciano.

Five hundred VIP guests are expected at the festivities, 150 of which will be flown in by Pulp Fiction actor and pilot John Travolta in his $125-million Boeing 707. Russell Crowe, Oprah Winfrey, Will Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett, Steven Spielberg and the Beckhams are expected to attend.

Following the ceremony, Katie will be locked in the castle dungeon until the honeymoon. Why Holmes didn't "lose" her passport or fake her own death, I'll never know.

One couple is coming together, but Jude Law and Sienna Miller have separated permanently citing "fundamental differences" for the end of their three-year relationship.

I guess you could call the willful shagging of homely nannies "fundamental differences." No reports have confirmed if the film "Alfie" had anything to do with the decision.

Emmitt Smith won "Dancing With The Stars" this week.

Although I never watched an episode of the hit show, I was rooting for Smith to wipe that shit-eating grin off of Mario Lopez's face. I don't despise A.C. Slater, however, I've seen too many pictures of him looking distressingly earnest lately to wish him well.

K-Fed supposedly scrawled this message on a bathroom stall after Britney filed for divorce:

The man is a true poet.

O.J. Simpson has written a book that speculates how, hypothetically, he could have killed his ex-wife and her friend, and that bastion of taste and class, Fox network announced plans to televise an interview with the former football star and Nordberg from "The Naked Gun."

Fox plans to broadcast a two-part interview with Simpson to discuss the issue.

Let me save you a bit of time so you don't have to tune in: There's nothing hypothetical about it - the Juice did it.

A good mood deserves a good image to end with and since we like thongs and attitude around here, let's go with:

Here's to service with a smile . . . And Happy Friday!


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