This is Epth Nation

Epth is a state of mind, not a place. Reading this will give you a virtual drivers license in that state, but you'll still need to be 21 to purchase alcohol. And you can't get any there anyway, so stop asking.

Friday, September 02, 2005

A Thing That's Blowing Up: A Blog From New Orleans

This is interesting:

It's a blogging guy who's part of a unit with Outpost Crystal, which I believe is an army-related base in New Orleans. You want real news related to the evacuation and chaos there? This is the best place I've found, told from an even-handed rescue worker with an eye for what's important. Not to turn this into a way less important issue, but this is a great example of why blogs can often do things that the mainstram media could never do.

We got a message from pastor who was in the Sheraton on Canal Street in New Orleans for a conference during the hurricane. After the hurricane, he got out of the area about 20-30 minutes before Canal street was flooded. One of our friends (who's a pastor in Slidell, LA) was at the conference too, and escaped. He's now in Alabama, waiting to hear word from his town and his church to see if he has a home left. These people, they're our friends and neighbors. We need to get them out of there and get them on the way to rebuilding their lives. This may be an obvious point, but add me to the voices that say that this is taking way too long. I know a lot of good people are doing the best they can, but it's not good enough.

s/s/hurricaney. Maybe it's because I live down here in the South now, but I just can get it out of my head. I'm also coming down with a cold, but I don't think I'll be complaining about stuff for a while -- except stupid people on TV, of course.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

News Not Related to Hurricanes

I'm tired of the way this hurricane is being covered. It seems like those well-dressed news people should be helping those poor people get out of flooded areas, but they just stick a microphone in their face. Is this what people have to go through to get their 15 minutes of fame? I mean, I know that a striking image can stir us to action, but do we need to see a professional person professionally telling us (in an impersonal way) how horrible things are while standing in front of a field of rubble? Do we need to see it on every station? I know that it would be ludicrous for a station not to cover it. But do they have to send people to stand right in the middle of it? Is that what journalism is these days?

I don't even know if I'm complaining about it, really. Something just seems off about the coverage, you know?

Anyway, here's the news I didn't get to yesterday that has to do with other things:

Olive Oil has been found to "Act like a painkiller." Apparently, 50g is equivalent to 1/10 of a dose of ibuprofin! Wow, that means you only have to drink half a kilogram of it to equal a whole pill, right? Who's going to do that, and why is this cluttering up the news?

How does a virus get programmed into an MP3 player before it ships from the factory? That's the question Creative Labs is asking, after recalling a buttload of their stupidly-named Zen Neeon 5GB gadgets. Apparently, these were shipped in Japan, so again, this news is worthless.

My Fantasy Football League starts this Sunday with it's deadly automated draft. Again, not important.

A story will be coming soon, as well as my recap of last Tuesday's My Super Sweet Sixteen, which was typically insane, but moreso.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Hurricane Katrina News?

Hurricane Katrina news is all over the place these days, and for good reason. Most of New Orleans is uninhabitable and flooded, and that whole Southern Gulf area is going to take years to clean up. It's all very very serious to the point of being almost overwhelming, and so I don't really want to cover it any more than it's already being covered. Our prayers go out to the people who are in New Orleans, the people who need to be rescued inside and outside the city, and the rescue workers.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

For The Heck of It: A Sports Ignorant NFL Preview

I was so discouraged by last year's debacle that I planned not to do an NFL Preview this year. But then I thought, what if Magellan's men would have stopped when Magellan died? Then we wouldn't know Magellan's name today, and some other joker would have been the first dude to sail around the world. So, in the spirit of Magellan's sick and tired crew, here is my:

Sports Ignorant NFL Preview: This Time, It's Pointless.

New England It Girls -- 12-4
"Struggaling" NY Football Jets -- 9-7
Beefalo: The Other Dark Meat -- 8-8
The Ricky Williams Pot Express -- 3-13

Sometimes you need to ask the question, "Does anything ever change?" Sometimes you need to answer, "Heck, no." Maybe someday soon the Patriots will be exposed for the team of overacheiving potential failures they are, but I doubt it. Buffalo has rid itself of the Bledsoe curse but that won't help. Ricky Williams will be fun to watch, as well as to speculate about w/r/t the steam coming from his helmet.

Ray Lewis' Gun Bunch -- 10-6
The Pitt of Despair -- 10-6
Cincinatti Fudgesicles -- 7-9
Land of Brown -- 4-12

Words cannot describe how bad Cleveland's offense is. Pittsburgh will fall back this year, because somebody always does. Ray Lewis will kill three running backs and an offensive tackle by the end of the year, and will consequently sell more jerseys than anyone else in the world. The Bengals look yummy this year.

Indianapolis Dolts -- 12-4
Air McNair, It's Not Fair -- 9-7
Jacksonville Pretentious Cars, or Cats -- 9-7
Texas Texans of Texas -- 4-12

Again, words cannot describe how bad Houston's offense is. Last year, I picked the Titans to go to the Super Bowl, and they failed me. I won't make that mistake again (or will I?). Indianapolis will score a buhzillion points and fail in the playoffs again, and Jacksonville will be ok. I've always liked Jacksonville, and now they have a Leftwich. This could be their year.

Kansas City Chefs -- 10-6
San Diego Cool Uniforms -- 10-6
Oakland Prison System, and yes that's a cheap shot -- 8-8
The Accursed Broncos -- 6-10

I just don't think the Broncos know what they're doing this year. They will fail. KC and SD will be good but not great, and who knows about Oakland? I'm just glad I won't have to watch Randy Moss underacheivingly kill the Pack twice a year.

Andy Reid vs. TO -- 11-5
Dallas Cowboys -- 8-8
Washington Insensitive Nicknames -- 7-9
The NY Football Giants -- 7-9

Philadelphia and a bunch of average. I think Dallas will be better than they were, but the Bledsoe curse is now upon them. I'm too offended by the "Skins" to even think straight about them. The big question, of course, is whether Philadelphia will continue to win. The answer, of course, is maybe.

Green Bay, The Holy Team with Choirs of Angels Singing -- 10-6
Minnesota Fat Quarterbacks -- 10-6
Take Them to Detroit (Noooooo!) -- 5-11
The Shufflin' Crew -- 5-11

The Bears can't buy a QB to save their lives. Just having Chutch on their team, even if he's not playing, will kill them. I refuse to believe Detroit could be any good with Harrington hitting vendors with the ball all the time. So, it's back to the old GB-Minn conflict, and this time there's no Randy Moss to bail the Vikings out. Of course, the Packers aren't any good either, so this is really just a homer pick.

Carolina Panthros -- 10-6
Hurricane Katrina Memorial Team -- 8-8
Atlanta doesn't deserve a team -- 8-8
Tampa Bay Succaneers -- 8-8

Nobody likes these teams. Let's not talk about them. I really like the Panthers, though. I was just kidding a couple of sentences back. When will Tampa go back to the creamsicle look that was so awesome in the 80's?

Arizona Kurt Warners -- 9-7
Mike Holmgren Really is a Good Coach -- 8-8
St. Jewish Non-Faulks -- 7-9
San Francisco Treat -- 4-12

Arizona will be led back to prominence they never had by Kurt Warner, some receivers, and Dennis Green. Mike Holmgren will be fired. St. Louis will be punished by God for demoting Marshall Faulk before his time. San Fran will never be good again, I am convinced. Tim Rattay? Come on!

Pittsburgh at Kansas City -- Pittsburgh
San Diego at Baltimore -- Baltimore
New Orleans (after an elaborate system of tie breakers) at Carolina -- New Orleans
Arizona at Minnesota -- Arizona

Pittsburgh at Indianapolis -- Indianapolis
Baltimore at New England -- New England
New Orleans at Philadelphia -- New Orleans
Arizona at Green Bay -- Green Bay

New Orleans at Green Bay -- New Orleans
Indianapolis at New England -- Who do you think? New England, of course.

New England over New Orleans in the battle of the "New's." What a let-down, huh?

Monday, August 29, 2005

A Story From Last Week.

So there's this members-only pool in my delivery area, right on Richardson's main drag, Belt Line Road, but hidden so well by trees I never realized it existed. White people apparently pay good money to have a place where they can swim, drink, and show Jimmy Neutron on a 30-inch projection screen hung on a fence. Back in my day, we had public pools, with public people, and swimming cost 25 cents a day. This private thing is probably better. Those public pools can get you into trouble.

We had two different people order pizzas at this pool last Friday night. The orders were independent of each other (neither one knew the other had ordered), and came about 15 minutes apart. Here's the thing -- the orders had different addresses. One of them had a Belt Line address and the other a Spring Creek Road address. But they were going to the same place, White Power Pool or whatever it was called. Do you see the potential confusion here? Is this like an episode of Three's Company or what?

The next thing you know, Charles the delivery driver attempts to find the Spring Creek Road address. Right on the ticket it says "deliver to pool." He thinks he finds the right place, but doesn't. He ends up going to a pool at some house, and the people there tell him to get out of their yard you freak, nobody ordered pizza. Charles then tries to call the number on the ticket, but nobody answers. So Charles comes back with the two medium pizzas, and they sit under the warmer slowly getting crusty.

Before Charles comes back with the mediums, I leave with two large pizzas for the same place, but I am actually able to find it. Wow, I thought, there's a pool here. I walk in through the gate and in front of me is a large pool, with white people milling about in all directions. There's no door guard or intercom system like at the other exclusionary pools in the area, so I wander around for about 30 seconds before I get to a clubhouse. Remember, at this point I have no idea that two people are getting pizza. Just as someone in the clubhouse has pity on me and starts to try to find the perps who ordered it, a guy way on the opposite side of the pool waves me over. I make my way over there, dodging wet kids and splashes and a woman with a nice bod and skunk hair. The guy thinks his order comes to $15.14, but in my world the ticket reads $20.56. I call the store, and because the addresses on the tickets are different they don't figure out that I actually have the wrong pizzas for this dude. The manager tells me to give him the 2 large pizzas for the lower price, and I walk back the other way around the pool, away from the weirdly attractive skunk lady. As I am almost to the gate, a nice wet lady smiles at me and says, "I guess we'll be seeing you again soon, eh?" I have no idea what she's talking about. I get to my car and the wheels in my head have spun enough to make the call to the Papa and ask if there are any other orders for this stupid pool on Belt Line Road. Of course, the manager says no, because the addresses for the two orders are different. We still don't know at this point. Isn't this kooky?

I'm about halfway to Papa John's when the other manager calls and clarifies what just happened. I told her I gave the two larges to the guy, and she starts to figure things out. She asks if the guy was happy, and I say yes -- he got two larges for a medium price. It's at this point I realize that I gave the guy somebody else's pizzas, because over the phone I can hear things like, "This is to a pool, too?" and, "F___ing Charles!" I get back to the store and it's all laid out before us like some bad movie...Charles went to the wrong pool because he's an idiot, I went to the right pool but was called over by the wrong guy, and there's a wet white woman out there who's been waiting for her pizzas for almost an hour. Oh, and the pool apparently uses flexible addressing. What a colossal mess.

The poor woman's pizzas are re-made and given to her for free. She didn't seem to notice they were late, and didn't seem to have compared notes with the other guy. She was happy, the guy was happy enough to not call back, I was happy because the manager basically zeroed out all the charges (giving me an extra 15 bucks for my trouble), and the crew was happy because they got to devour the guy's two medium pizzas. The End.

Epilogue: Later that night, Charles calls the Manager while out on another delivery. According to the Manager, Charles said something like, "I've had a little's going to take me about 10 minutes to get back there...I don't want to talk about it."

We never found out what the problem was.

Hurricane Katrina

I am amazed by weather, especially weather as violent and deadly as a Category 5 hurricane. It's also amazing to me that Katrina's landfall could be happening in the same country (and general region) as me and I don't feel the effects of it at all. Do you see how big that thing is?

It feels trite and cheesy to write more posts while this is going on. I won't let that stop me, though. Our prayers go out to the people of New Orleans and all the areas affected by this death storm.

Right now, I feel as though a hurricane is hitting me. There are workers laying cables or something in my ceiling, and they are banging stuff directly above me. I half expect a large electrical worker to land on top of me any second now. They're doing a lot of yelling, so I don't think it's going very well. Now it sounds like they brought in a buffalo to do some of the work up there. Oh, now there's some pounding. I'm serious. They are directly above me. I'm sure they will want to get into my room in a second. I hope whatever they are doing is necessary for the function of the store. Ok, I heard a bang. They're throwing something "way high."

I'll let you know if anything interesting happens...

Sunday, August 28, 2005

My Super Sweet Sixteen, Part Triplets

My Super Sweet Sixteen, Part VIII – Let’s Label Some Triplets

The folks at MTV tried something different this time. The subjects of this episode are: triplets; not extraordinary in any real way, good or bad, except for the fact that they look the same; 18 instead of 16. This show is normally much like “Behind the Music” or “The Real World,” in that there’s a formula you apply, and the only changes are the people involved. On this show, there’s always a crazy parent, a party planner, a dress that costs too much, a decked-out venue, passing out of the invitations complete with exclusion, a spoiled kid acting bratty, a bunch of party-goers who act all crazy for the camera, the subject kicking people out of the party, and the money total at the end. There are slight variations in every episode, but those are the basics.

What this episode did (which turned out kinda boring, btw) was throw most of those conventions out the window in favor of a story arc, namely these three triplets and how they wanted to prove their individuality. There were no crazy parents, no parental drama, no dress chaos, no kicking people out of the party, very little mention of the triplets’ friends, no inappropriate dancing, and no money total (except what the band cost). On top of all that, these girls are 18 instead of the sixteen. This was an 18th birthday party, and a pretty average one at that. So the whole thing was just MTV meeting these triplets and cramming them into the show, formula (and age) be darned. It was a terrible, terrible decision, as these triplets, while slightly catty, are about as interesting as a fart compared with the likes of Ava and Sophie. So the storyline was edited in to force entertainment out of a dull situation. Did they succeed? I’m afraid not.

Our story starts with mildly lurid shots of the triplets with one of them (Candis – “The Cocky One”) voicing over, “fulfilling…every guy’s fantasy about triplets.” Eww, and a thousand times eww. Why are you even thinking about that? At least they got the ickiest line over with in the first five seconds. These girls should not know what “every guy’s fantasy” is, especially if it’s about them. You know some hormonal teenage idiots told them something about a foursome, which they then applied to the whole of mankind. Judging by the clip, the fantasy involves really ugly showgirl outfits and belly flab. From the first montage, I gathered that this was going to be some sort of sex episode, because the girls were shown in the aforementioned pink-and-black lingerie hooker uniforms, belly-exposing bikinis, and other outfits that they assume would make them “every guy’s fantasy.” But it turns out that most of the time, the girls are dressed like normal teenage girls – kind of refreshing, but also boring. I actually wouldn’t have minded a sex episode, because at least it would have given me something to write about.

There comes a point in every triplet’s life when she must strike out on her own and become an independent young woman. MTV has decided to help them with this by editing them to seem like they have one dominant personality trait that makes them different from their siblings. For Candace, it’s that she’s “Cocky.” For Jessica, it’s that she’s “Jealous.” So far, these are easy to remember because of the alliteration – Cocky Candace vs. Jealous Jessica. Bringing up the rear is Ashley, who is known for MTV purposes as “The Wet Blanket.” Now, I happen to like wet blankets. They’re the perfect thing to put out the fires of slutiness and bratty behavior. As far as MTV is concerned, being a wet blanket means you have a low self-esteem and extreme levels of modesty. Diddy hates modesty. This is probably the most disturbing aspect of the episode – they take the most sympathetic girl in the history of the show and make her into the heavy.

The backdrop for all this lack of action is Fremont, CA. Fun fact: I send a lot of laptop computers to be repaired in Fremont. Ok, that fact isn’t very fun, but since I write the city down on a shipping memo twice a week I thought I had to mention it. Sheesh. The girls live ½ the time with their mother, the other half with their dad. We see mom for a total of 0.6 seconds when they introduce her, dad for about a minute as he introduces the neo-pop-punk band he bought for the party. The situation doesn’t seem too contentious, although there was a divorce at some point, and those are never good. At least in this episode we aren’t treated to scenes of the girls using temper tantrums to steamroll their parents. Again, refreshing, but what’s the point of all this if the girls aren’t going to be bratty?

Have I complained enough about the girls' dullness? Can we get on with it please?

Cocky Candis does play the part of the MTV-style “Sweet Sixteen Brat” pretty well. She voices over much of the episode, although MTV could be lying to us about that. It’s not like we can even tell the girls' voices apart. She describes the party and the lame Vegas motif they’re using, and says that “People are definitely jealous that they can’t do something this big…it’s pathetic.” I’m not sure if she meant the party or the jealous people. Fun fact: most people who think that other people are “just jealous” of their money are in fact enormously bossy tools who think they’re better than common folk and therefore attract the sort of hostility usually reserved for Neo-Nazis and people who are trying to break into one’s car. Some people with money feel blessed to be fortunate, and don’t lord it over others. Consequently, they also don’t have to deal with that “jealousy.”
Candis is clearly a Bourgeois scumbag.

The girls hand-picked 125 people, making their party a little less exclusive than Sophie’s last week. They don’t show much of the invitation presentations except for one guy the girls mock for not knowing which triplet is which. Oh, and a little later the girls all get dressed up to drive to the house of this total dreamboat named Michael Born and present him with an invitation or three. He and his angel choir answer the door, and he says he will show up, and the girls swoon like drunken idiots. It’s pretty clear M. Born likes the attention of (MTV and) the triplets, since he spent all those years working on his look. More on this turkey a bit later.

One of the fun and unfair things that MTV does is show footage that undercuts what a character is saying while that person is saying it. For example, as the girls talk about how they want to be viewed as individuals rather than “The Triplets,” MTV is showing them trying on the same ugly hats and trying on the same ugly dresses. Who would have thought MTV could be so subtle and layered?

Candis freaks out as the limo driver is 20 minutes late for his appointment to take them to the party planner (now we’re talking – this is the kind of pointless overspending we need more of), but Ashley talks her down. Ashley is so cool. She’d never be like that cocky Candis. She’s her own triplet. Or maybe I’m just fooling myself. The Party Planner shows the three enthusiastic girls what she’s put together for a Vegas theme, and suggests they ride in on Harleys. One of the girls, I can’t remember which (better copy that phrase to the clipboard) really likes that idea. Then, the showgirls idea is floated. Candis could not be more excited about dressing like a showgirl. She wants attention from boys, you see. Jessica and Ashley are lukewarm to the idea, because they want attention that doesn’t involve a garter belt.

While we’re on the subject, I’m going to put myself out there a little bit and tell you that I don’t get the whole “showgirl” thing. It’s just not attractive, and always involves ugly outfits with feathers. Feathers aren’t sexy in any context. Also, the girls are hideously made-up, plastic-looking, and leathery. Feathers and leathers are what I think of when I think of showgirls. That’s not sexy. Plus, they just basically dance around like a bunch of sedated strippers, don’t they? They might walk around, spin here and there, put their hands in the air, and do some kicks. It’s not alluring, it’s robotic.

Candis gets the brilliant idea that she will perform a song at the party with this one band she knows. That’s her way of getting the most attention. Unfortunately for her, she cannot sing. At one point, she’s practicing singing all alone, and MTV edits in the sound of a dog howling in the background. Again, unfair but fun. When we hear her sing, we instantly know that her story arc will end badly, and that Cocky Candis will get her comeuppance.

Jess and Ash see that their triplet is going to do something to get attention, and they totally copy her. MTV tries to make us think that the two jealous girls separately went to the party planner to flesh out ideas on solo acts they could do, but my wife for one isn’t buying it. It sure seems like MTV put them up to it so that their story arc could work out. Anyway, the Planner suggests that one of the girls, I can’t remember which, try “fire-eating.” I’m kind of disappointed that never materialized. Jessica decides to “tango,” which isn’t a euphemism for anything. We don’t know what Ashley’s going to do, because MTV doesn’t want us to know. What can a wet blanket do except frustrate those who are cold?

This is the point in the show where they go to M. Born’s (or as Candis calls him, “The only thing that matters.”) house. As they get all dolled up, one of the girls, I can’t remember which, tells the others, “You girls givin' up on looking better than me yet?” That’s funny, so I’m assuming it was Ashley. The best moments in the episode are when the girls get catty with each other – at times they get downright mean. As they are getting ready for the party later in the episode, Candis actually calls one of the girls, I can’t remember which an “evil whore.” That’s one reason why this isn’t a Sweet 18 Party – these girls aren’t sweet. Of course, they aren’t terribly sour either. They’re somewhere in between, and MTV viewers demand less balance.

The girls ditch the Harleys and trade down to a magician instead. I find magicians besides Gob Bluth to be creepy. Candis is still pushing the whole showgirl angle, and this time jealous Jessica joins her because she, too, wants to get attention from boys. She’s tired of Candis getting all the attention. Keep in mind that these girls look exactly alike. Anyway, Ashley’s clearly uncomfortable with the idea, but one of the girls, I can’t remember which accuses her of “acting like we’re going to come out there like sluts,” which is accurate but not something the political Ashley would put in those words. What they settle on is giant cardboard cutouts of them in showgirl outfits, which is sort of a lose-lose compromise, if you think about it. The girls don’t get the attention they crave, but they still dress like sluts. Seems like a bad idea to me, but then again I’m not a teenage girl.

The girls get in their pink-and-black showgirl outfits and the photographer tells them he wants them to look “like dolls.” You can’t express objectification much clearer than that, can you? Feminism is dead. The girls get photos taken in a big pink-and-black feathered group (during which Candis utters the “every boy’s fantasy” line, which makes me cringe all over again), and then separately. These girls are not attractive, I’m sorry. Again, it’s not like they’re a herd of wooly mammoths like Sophie – they’re just average-to-weird-looking teenage girls. And they should never – ever -- wear something that bares their midriff, because girlfriend, things are a real mess there in the middle.

During Jealous Jessica’s photo shoot, she tries to act all sexy, apparently. I didn’t really notice her, having been stunned by the sheer amount of feathers there were in the group shot. Poor black birds. Anyway, Candis is like, pissed that one of the other girls would try to be sexy. She’s the sexy one, dang it! So then Jealous Candis, er, Cocky Candis goes out there and struts her stuff in front of the camera lens. She reclaims the “Sexiest Triplet” title (again, they look exactly alike), and says that “No one can take that away from me.” That’s true, because the title exists only in her mind. No one can take away her imaginary friends, either.

Thankfully, these girls don’t subject us to multiple dress changes and last-minute wardrobe alterations, and they get right to the par-tay. The shindig seems way less formal than the other ones we’ve seen (except possibly Hart’s, but he’s a boy), and consequently beats me down a lot less. It actually looks a little fun. Everything’s just more chill and drama-free, and that may have more to do with the fact that these girls are 18 than anything else. They’re two whole years more mature than the others.

Anyway, M. Born shows up in the gayest tight black velour t-shirt you can imagine. Whatever you’re picturing in your head, it’s gayer than that. M. Born spends a lot of time on his looks, you can tell. He appears to be about 25 years old, with a fake tan and too much time in the gym. Actually, he looks like he should be on MTV’s “The Real World.” I don’t know for a fact that he’s a tool, but I find it hard to believe that a non-tool would wear that shirt. I mean, you see yourself in the mirror in that thing, and you don’t laugh? Come on, M. Born. The girls still think he’s dreamy, though, so I guess it’s working for him. Tool.

He can’t tell which triplet is which, and eventually asks one of his lapdogs which one is Jessica and which one is Ashley (he’s got Candis down, as do I – she’s the one with the bangs and not wearing a dress). This is especially funny since even after clarifying, he gets it wrong. He gives Ashley Jessica’s flower, and suddenly his fairy-tale like spell on the triplets is over. They no longer like him. Boy, they really take this whole “being themselves” thing seriously, eh? All it took was one mistake, and this guy is slid out the door on his own hair gel. If he wasn’t such a tool and an MTV camera whore, I’d feel sorry for him. At any rate, for loving and then turning on M. Born, I do pronounce these girls officially dumb.

The one black kid at the party dances really well.

Now it’s time for the girls to express their independence from the Triplets by performing something without the others. Candis is first up, with her dog-killing sing-along. She expresses concern that the loudness of the crowd will cover up her singing. Dogs all over the world rejoice as Candis performs the song with the band, and does not put her face close enough to the microphone to be heard. I don’t know if MTV just edited her totally out to be funny, but the crowd could not hear her at all. She was glad to be the center of attention for a while, though, and said she felt like “a rock star.” In the words of Reverend Lovejoy, “That’s super.”

Jessica next gets into a Tango costume and dances. The best part about this is Candis saying she liked it, but was kind of mad Jessica snuck around on her and planned the dance without her knowledge. Candis doesn’t like the other two thinking for themselves, apparently. Triplets are so weird.

Finally, Ashley caps off the episode by throwing out all her values and dressing in her own personal showgirl uniform and walking through the crowd. I have to hand it to her -- she does have good posture. Her boyfriend can’t believe how great it is that his girlfriend looks so classless, and goes into seizures of joy. It’s actually kinda cute, his reaction. Everyone else at the party also loves Ashley’s decision to parade half-naked through the crowd, including Candis and Jessica. one of the girls, I can’t remember which, even says, “She’s not the wet blanket anymore.” Aww…it just goes to show that if you compromise your principles, people who are less principled will love you. That’ll come in handy when she’s stripping.

Ok, to be fair to Ashley, it wasn’t a terribly slutty outfit or anything. It did have the dreaded bare-midriff with her gut sticking out, which was unfortunate. The rest of it was somehow both too skimpy and too bulky. I’m not sure how that happened.

And to be fair to us, I will point out that dressing like a slut is not technically a talent, even if it does make you a hero to your sisters and MTV.

Cocky Candis, having ditched her ill-fated crush on M. Born, provides our epilogue as she hangs out with a dude named Aaron, and flirts with him real bad as the band her dad paid $40,000 for drones on in the background. She kisses him, and the world is back to normal. She’s back to being the sexiest triplet. Whew. Ashley’s reign lasted probably a half-hour. It was totally worth selling herself out, though, right?