Chris Rock's latest standup tour - Last night I caught Chris Rock's latest standup show with some coworkers. I have to let it soak in over a few weeks (during which I will dutifully, as a male, repeat his jokes to many of my coworkers and friends with a substantially substandard delivery that will deflate 85% of the humor of the routines), but with the performance fresh in my mind I'm convinced it's his best standup performance yet. I was in tears a couple of times. The Presidential election, race relations, differences between men and women, marriage, sex, steroids...he ranged over all the topics I was hoping he'd hit. If he's coming to your town, get yourself a ticket.

There's nothing like seeing good standup live; you can watch the inevitable HBO special, but you won't have the energy from thousands of people laughing to feed off of (the flipside is probably also true, that seeing bad standup live is exponentially more uncomfortable than seeing it on TV).

I last saw him live in Seattle some four years ago, during his Never Scared tour. Of all the standup comedians I've seen live (not a huge list, but includes folks like Dennis Miller, Seinfeld, Russell Peters), Chris Rock is my favorite. I saw Seinfeld twice in a four year span, and he repeated a great deal of his material. Though Rock covers similar themes in each show, I've never heard him use the same joke twice.


Lays ketchup flavored potato chips - one of my coworkers brought a bag back from Toronto. Apparently this flavor is a specialty north of the border. In America we love ketchup with our french fries, so why hasn't this flavor of chips caught on here? Whatever the reason, to satiate my fix I may have to resort to bidding on eBay.


State of Play - the British just seem to be able to crank out great political thrillers and police procedurals (I'm still a huge fan of Spooks, or MI-5 as they rebrand it for BBC America). This six-part miniseries stars the always fantastic Bill Nighy and a young Kelly MacDonald and James McAvoy, to name a few actors more recognized this side of the pond. It starts, as these things often do, with a dead body. When the press, government, industry, and police all tug on the thread, the plot unravels at a healthy clip.