Archive for 2009

Not So Free: Bring Your Own Breadsticks to Mary’s Pizza Shack!

Monday, December 28th, 2009 | SMASH Freebies, SMASH Pop Culture with 1 Comment

Rejected At Mary's Pizza Shack over Breadsticks

Breadstick Blues

Before I get started, let me preface this by saying that I’m a big fan of the bay area favorite:  Mary’s Pizza Shack.  The “Shack” serves a variety of homemade Italian food including pizza, pasta, sandwiches, soups, salads, breadsticks, appetizers and desserts at moderate prices.  Now the part about “moderate prices” shouldn’t be ignored, as Mary’s does indeed offer great food at equally great prices.

But what also shouldn’t be overlooked is the fact that Mary’s breadsticks are indeed on offer — but despite the advertised “complimentary” (FREE) teaser, they come at a price. Read the rest of this entry »

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Monday, December 28th, 2009 | SMASH Technology with No Comments »

Red Plaid

The Plaid Mystery

I don’t think there’s a quick explanation for it, but what is up with so much red plaid everywhere? Honestly, it can’t just be about the holiday season and the obvious red color scheme because this has been around for much of the year. And while this is a completely unscientific observation, I think I have a few hunches as to why this bold print seems to linger, and probably will so, even after we all take down our Christmas trees and store our ornaments from this holiday season. Read the rest of this entry »

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Spreading Christmas Cheer with Rev. Billy’s Church of Stop Shopping

Friday, December 25th, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

Billy Stop Shopping

If you’re like me, still dreading the thought of having to buy those last Christmas presents and thus be even further in debt for the momentary pleasures of another loved one, then I suggest a viewing of Rob VanAlkemade’s “What Would Jesus Buy?, recently aired on the Sundance Channel and produced by noted documentary filmmaker himself, Morgan Spurlock (“Super Size Me”). Read the rest of this entry »

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McDonald’s To Offer FREE WIFI in 2010

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009 | SMASH Technology with No Comments »

McDonald's WIFI

Funny, when I go to McDonald’s, it’s usually for fast (emphasis on “fast”) food—a quick burger, fries, drink. Nothing special, really. But did you know you could also linger around, open up your laptop and surf the web as you stuffed your mouth with Chicken McNuggets and Filet-o-Fish sandwiches?

Well, at approximately 11,000 (out of 14,000)  Mickey D’s around the country, you can get this Wifi service, except that it will cost you a little less than the #1 (Big Mac) meal deal –a whopping $2.95 for two hours of access time. That’s just enough time to linger at a McDonald’s perhaps without people thinking you have no life. But why pay for this service? Why not go to a place like Starbucks, or even park outside and access what is essentially free Wifi access, as long as you have some kind AT&T phone service? Read the rest of this entry »

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Loud TV Commercials? House passes Bill to END the Noise

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009 | SMASH Technology with No Comments »

TV Commercials Too Loud

It’s been a long time coming.  Finally, after 50 years of enduring nationwide noise pollution, the House passed a bill yesterday that would turn down the volume on loud television advertisements.  There’s even a cutesy acronym slapped onto the act:  Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation, or CALM. Read the rest of this entry »

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5 Most Impressive Cars at the LA Auto Show 2009

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture, SMASH Technology with No Comments »

Audi Etron 2009 LA Auto Show

Before the main US trade show for cars, held next month in Detroit at the North American Auto Show, Los Angeles holds an annual display, bringing together many new models and concept vehicles for the public to see.

LA Auto Show

Overall, the show at the LA Convention Center is important for the volume of cars held in three cavernous halls. And even if Detroit still rules supreme because it attracts the world media for the occasional “world” debuts and the annual announcements of the cars of the year, LA is still a pretty fine show.

Here are some of the more impressive new models that I saw last weekend: Read the rest of this entry »

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Ukulele Boy Does Jason Mraz Better Than Jason Mraz

Monday, December 14th, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with 6 Comments

Japanese Boy playing Ukulele Jason Mraz

I defy anyone not to like this amazing clip from a 5-year-old boy in Japan who, armed with a ukulele, plays the hell out of one of the most endearing yet also annoying pop songs, Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours”.  You must know this song –it’s the stuff or earworms, the kind of sing-songy, melodic dross that, according to Billboard Magazine, has spent the most weeks in the Hot 100 (76), received triple Platinum status and has sold over 4 million copies worldwide. Read the rest of this entry »

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SMASH GODS TV: Sue Sylvester’s Snappiest Quotes from “Glee”

Wednesday, December 9th, 2009 | SMASH Technology with 1 Comment


Along with Entertainment Weekly I celebrate the weekly wonder that is Jane Lynch, who plays the balls-to-wall coach on one of this year’s most vibrant new TV shows, “Glee”. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Chinese Explain the Tiger Woods Smash-Up Sims-Style

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

Leave it to the Chinese to provide the world with a graphic, yet hilarious animated blow-by-blow account of whatever it is that took place near Tiger Woods’ mansion in Windermere, FLA early last Friday morning.

The Chinese, you say? In case this even bears repeating, Tiger Woods is probably the globe’s most well-known athlete, and possibly its wealthiest. And the Cadillac Escalade crash that was heard around the world only underscores the enormous global reach that this suddenly notorious golf titan has. Read the rest of this entry »

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Free Workouts All This Week at 24 Hour Fitness

Monday, November 23rd, 2009 | SMASH Freebies with No Comments »

24 hour fitness

Thanksgiving Day is coming up. You probably just took out the frozen bird and are already thawing the damn thing. Or you’re making plans to fly or drive to Grandma’s or maybe you decided to splurge for a meal at a restaurant. Whatever the plans, one thing’s for sure: you are going to stuff your face on that one day a year when you just don’t care about that pile of turkey and trimmings on your plate.

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Hold on to Your Hats! A Double Martha Smackdown

Monday, November 23rd, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

Martha StewartWe honestly don’t know what more publicity Martha Stewart needs. Or why she has been on TV shows hawking maybe her 500th book of domestic crafty/wedding cakes/cupcakes/papier-mache cabinets or whatever it is that she pays professional photographers the big bucks to capture. We also don’t know why she decided to submit to a full-length interview with ABC’s Cynthia McFadden on “Nightline”. But there she was, in all her imperious glory, tight-faced sometimes, but seemingly not without some things to say.

But let’s back up a bit first. To a couple of weeks back, in fact. Martha decided –in what seemed like an unprecedented move, if you believed the ads that were hyping this—to go on the Rachael Ray show, and at the same time, Rachael returned the favor two days later, on the Martha Stewart show.  Ray’s show, produced by Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Media, is far and away more popular than Martha’s somewhat more staid program –and this year Ray just snagged a Daytime Emmy for her show to boot. Read the rest of this entry »

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Eating then Dying: The Microsoft Windows 7 Whopper

Monday, October 26th, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

Windows 7 Whopper

Of course! What a natural combination! An operating system and a mammoth burger. The number 7. Oh, it’s Burger King and it’s in Japan! It all makes sense now. To celebrate the worldwide launch of Windows 7, Microsoft felt like roping Burger King for a weird promotion, available only in the burger-loving–and-tech-loving—country of Japan. For 7 days, all those who enter a BK in Japan will be able to sink their teeth into this outrageous 7-patty burger, called the Windows 7 Whopper for the not-so-reasonable price of 777 Yen (about $8.50 USD). Who thinks up these cross promotions? Read the rest of this entry »

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FREE KFC Grilled Chicken Today: Let the Chicken Wars Continue!

Monday, October 26th, 2009 | SMASH Freebies, SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

KFC Chicken FREE

Last April, KFC announced an “UNfry Day” to launch its new grilled chicken. All KFCs all over the country were giving out free pieces of chicken. We featured it back then, and even went through a fearless taste-test (reminder: it’s just OK). That promotion wasn’t such a success, even if Oprah herself got into the act, announcing on her show that people could go in to their local KFCs and demand the free food. The pandemonium soon followed. The long lines at my local KFC told the story: a lot of KFCs simply ran out of chicken. All this excitement for a perfunctory chicken thigh. Read the rest of this entry »

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Jon Gosselin (FINALLY) Pwned by Nancy Grace

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

Jon Gosselin PWNED!

Your life has to really be in the proverbial toilet if the voice of reason who is pwning you on national TV is none other than Nancy Grace. And that most pathetic of  all-American tools is the greasy, tight-Ed-Hardy-untucked-shirt-with-the flip-flops Jon Gosselin. His handlers apparently think nothing of going from TV program to TV program, from Larry King Live to The Insider and others, to tell his side of his very public split from his wife, the erstwhile Kate Gosselin. Read the rest of this entry »

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Letterman’s Creepy TV Confession: What’s Next?

Monday, October 5th, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture, SMASH TV with 1 Comment

Letterman Confession

David Letterman’s admission of an extortion plot and sexual liaison with his own female staffers at the Late Show on Thursday night’s broadcast was surely disturbing, but it also made for compelling TV. Letterman revealed that he had been blackmailed by someone for $2 million who had information about sexual relationships Letterman had had with female members of his own staff over the years. Letterman claimed he had testified with a grand jury and that he had been cooperating with authorities to expose the extortion case. He was also coming clean, so to speak, as a way of saving himself, his family, friends and co-workers, and, he said, his own job.  It’s probably a good idea that Letterman was so forthcoming, but the way he did so in front of his studio audience was unsettling, at times humorous, to say the least. Read the rest of this entry »

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2016 Olympics? It’ll be Rio.

Friday, October 2nd, 2009 | SMASH Pop Culture with No Comments »

2016 Olympics Bid

This Friday, October 2, at 9:30 am PST (or 11:30 am CST), the world will know which city has been chosen as the host for the 2016 Summer Olympics. For those who live in Chicago, Madrid, Rio and Tokyo, the four finalist cities, they are especially anxious. Read the rest of this entry »

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