Who Shot Darth Vadar?

This is Star Wars reimagined with the Dallas opening. If you're into Star Wars, check out The Official Star Wars Blog.


Jazz Band Makes Rock Covers Sound Cool (Heard)

What first turned me on to The Bad Plus, was the jazz trio's covers of rock songs. Blondie. Tears for Fears. Queen.Rush. Now, the Midwest-based band has added singer Wendy Lewis to the group. And on their latest For All I Care, the covers get even more interesting -- Nirvana's Lithium, Wilco's Radio Cure and Heart's Barracuda.

If you can get over the feeling that these covers are just a gimmick, you can hear that these guys have some serious chops.

For you Philly people out there, check out Bad Plus Friday or Saturday night (March 27, 28) at Chris Jazz Cafe on Sansom.


I'm Just Wild About Harry, Revised (Read)

I highly recommended the well-written and funny Harry, Revised, the debut novel by Mark Sarvas. Harry Rent is a doctor with a Bel Air mansion and a convertible. But he's really a loser. When his wife dies, he seeks to reinvent himself and land a young, sexy waitress at the local greasy spoon. Although, I had a serious dislike of Rent at first, he, and the book, grew on me ...

Harry, Revised was selected for the The Morning News' Tournament of Books. Click here to see how Sarvas' book did against another Distractions favorite -- City of Refuge. And see my post about the Tournament of Books from last year right here.

And check out Sarvas' highly regarded lit blog The Elegant Variation.


Don't Drink the Vitamin Water Kool-Aid

Anybody else notice that Gatorade has been replaced on the sidelines at the NCAA Tournament by Vitamin Water? How did that happen and when? I was always skeptical of the Vitamin Water brand, now even more so since it has flexed its Coca-Cola muscles. If you're a Vitamin Water fan and you think it's a smart drink, look at the label. It ain't water. And it ain't juice. And it's loaded with tons of sugar.

Want to try something different, yet somewhat healthier? I've gotten hooked on Whole Foods' 365 brand of "nutrient enhanced water," specifically the go-go Mangosteen flavor. Yes, as you can see from the picture above, it has horrible packaging. And they're not easy to find at my Whole Foods.

But the nutrient enhanced water has a much a better taste than Vitamin Water. And it's a cleaner drink. You'd be surprised at all the junk in Vitamin Water.

Picking on the Slumdog Millionaire

The wife and I finally saw Slumdog Millionaire the other night. It was more violent than I thought, but definitely an uplifting film -- and one of the most unique and captivating films I've seen over the last few years. Danny Boyle is a great story-teller. But like other quirky movies (Juno, Little Miss Sunshine) that surprisingly hit it big, Slumdog has run into some critical backlash. This type of thing has always bugged me, so it was great to see Nicky Hornby's recent post on this. See it here.