awesome questions from monica goodling’s interviews:
“What is it about George Bush that makes you want to serve him?”
“Aside from the President, give us an example of someone currently or recently in public service who you admire.” (When one interviewee responded “Condoleezza Rice,” Goodling frowned and said, “But she’s pro-choice.”)
The stupidity of the power-drunk never ceases to amaze me.
“The Dark Knight made $155M in opening weekend.” What does that mean? Where does the money go? And why am I paying $11 for a movie ticket, and $5 for popcorn and a soda? I did some research and here’s what I got:
In the days of yore, the studio and the theater were one in the same. But in 1948, the Supreme Court forced the studios to divest themselves of the theaters due to antitrust laws. (Paramount dominated the theaters in all but 4 of the existing 92 US cities with a population over 100,000.) However sixty years later, though in a different way, studios still control the theatres. Studios run an exorbitant bill, sparing little on actors, locations, post production etc. When it comes time to get a return on their investment, they turn to ticket sales.
See, studios must find a company to distribute the film to theaters, and then later to DVD or television. The distributor takes on the cost of making the copies of the film and decides how many prints to make, and to which theaters those prints will be distributed. This is often doing through a profit sharing scheme, where the distributor gets between 10 and 50% of revenues. In the case of The Dark Knight, Warner Bros used its own domestic distribution.
How it Works: The distributor leases out the movie to theaters that promise to return a percentage of ticket sales. This percentage of this profit sharing scheme changes over the life of the lease.In the first two weeks, the theaters get between 0 and 25% of ticket prices and fork over the rest to the distributor. The next couple, they get more: about 50%. The last few weeks they get about 75% of the movie ticket sales. But who goes to see a movie four weeks after its release? This leaves the theatres with no option but to raise ticket prices and charge as much as they possibly can get away with at the concession stand.
So why aren’t ticket prices higher? This is the age old question of whether to charge more for the primary product, or the secondary product. Keeping ticket prices (the primary product) at a reasonable rate (the average ticket price in the US in 2007 was $6.88) enables theaters to capture both the price sensitive and price insensitive customers. The price-insensitive customers can then shell out cash for overpriced popcorn and candy (the secondary product), the profit of which goes fully to the theater. Imagine ticket prices at $20. Many price-sensitive consumers would avoid the movies, and theaters may lose revenue. Plus, the theater wouldn’t even get much of the $20, since it must share ticket sales with the studio.
However, it’s not all about the popcorn. Theatres also make money by selling ads. The local advertising that shows before the movie begins generates a good percentage of revenue for the theater. And as for the previews - the studios give trailers to theaters, and pay for each showing based on the number of people who saw them. Per a theater owner in Long Island, “we have to call in our numbers every night to the film companies, and they give you ‘x-amount’ per person.”
So that’s why I had to pay $11 this weekend to see The Dark Knight. And that’s why we’re gouged at the concession stand. And that’s why we have to endure “The 20” and the numerous previews.
You know, I’m really starting to get sick of all the “news” stories about rising gas prices and how that’s affecting family summer vacations. Several times a week I hear, read, or see some sort of report about how people are “coping” with having to cancel vacations and instead are creating their travel experience at home (i.e. having a luau in your backyard because you can’t afford to go to Hawaii). There’s even a cute name for them: Stay-cations.
This is by and large the hot gas-related story of the summer. The gist of the story? Woe is me, gas is so expensive that we can’t afford to take our family vacation, we’re sooo stressed out over it, we’re handling this stressful and tragic situation the best we can by having a pretend glamorous vacation at home.
Ahem, privilege, anyone? Honestly, I really don’t feel all that bad for the families who are so economically privileged that they can actually afford to take off of work (or are privileged enough to have paid vacation time) and can go on a family vacation. Why should I?
I’ve noticed this too. It’s hard to muster much sympathy for the folks who have to forego the summer tour of Europe. We rarely had vacations when I was a kitten.
on his Major League Baseball Debut with the Chicago Cubs.
No photos of Shark in a Cubs uniform avaialble.
For those of you who aren’t familiar, Jeff is a talented athele who pitched for Notre Dame’s baseball team and was a star wide receiver on the football team. There was speculation that he would be a first-day pick in the NFL draft. Ultimately, he decided to forego the NFL and sign with the Cubs organization.
He struck out his first-ever Major League batter! You kick ass, Shark. All us ND folks are so happy for you.
I don’t really talk to people I don’t see on a regular basis. Yes, I know we’re friends and go way back. I care about you, I do. If you ever needed my help for something, anything, I’ll be there. You have a place to crash in New York. You have a guy to call when you need advice. I’ll go to your wedding and talk to you at reunions. I’m available for all that shit because we’re friends.
But you should know, otherwise we don’t have much to talk about. I’m not a phone person (I hate the phone actually). When I’m on the phone it’s strictly about logistics and if we don’t have immediate plans to see each other, there’s really nothing to discuss. I understand “catching up” but I’m much better in person. Please always include me in those big “life changing events” emails about your new job/apartment/house/girlfriend/wife/cat and give me the chance to stay current, but what you did last night doesn’t have much bearing on my day today unless it’s a funny story I’d appreciate or otherwise involving me.
So just because I’m online and see you online, there should be no feelings of obligation to message each other with “So…” unless there’s something of substance to be shared. I like talking with you, but really, I need most of my conversations to signify progress and moving forward towards a stronger relationship. Empty conversations work the other way, so let’s not have them instead of waiting for a good reason to talk. Let’s take this offline.
Seriously. I hate the damn phone almost as much as I hate idle chit-chat. I don’t screen people’s calls because I dislike them, I just can’t bear a long phone conversation.
Public Service Annoucement: A little self-awareness does a body good.
It’s always strange to encounter a person who has no sense of irony or self-awareness. I don’t understand those people. They are also usually pretty humorless, which means they are generally unpleasant. Then again, it would never occur to those types that I’m talking about them.
Here’s a point upon which to base a self-evaluation: If you find that you 1) often have problems with people and that 2) you are often the only one (or a member of a select few) who has a problem with a particular person, YOU are most likely the problem.
…because they removed an indefinite article (“a”) from one of his pieces.
Part of me wants to hate him for being all self-righteous and up himself over something that is, in the whole scheme of things, really minor. And he does come across as a bit of a cock in this letter. But at the same time, I appeciate how annoying some un-thought-through editing can be (oh, woe is me, I have such a hard life).
I always appreciated guidance and constructive criticism, but when editors (very occasionally) miss the point it can be mighty annoying. I remember a piece I wrote for my 6th Form magazine where they changed my title of “Universitas Solas Nobilitas?” (a hugely witty pun on our school motto) to simply “Universitas Solas Nobilitas”. I felt like I’d been violated. (There’s a quote for White Whines if ever there were one).
But Coren, if you’re going to get all uppity over grammar and scansion, at least use capital letters on your first person singular pronouns. ;-)
Perhaps he should also avoid ending clauses in prepositions.
In some ways, I am glad someone is standing up in defense of prose. This might be a bit much, though.
I like to think of editing as making the author’s work more readable and thereby helping him get his message across. You have to walk a fine line between your vision and the author’s voice. You also have to know your authors- know who will appreciate a fresh perspective on their piece and who will lose their shit if you cut an indefinite article (or change an improperly used “since” to “because,” or whatever).
Sienna may have a vagina like a boxing glove, but she ain’t too swift in the brains department. If you don’t want anyone to see you cavorting around topless with your married boyfriend, then get a fucking room.
to the start of college football season. Of course, that means 45 days to the start of Notre Dame’s season (don’t even get me started on this). I’m so excited that I’m about to piss my pants in anticipation just thinking about it.
People just roll their eyes at me when I tell them that Willingham is the world’s laziest recruiter ever and that his recruiting failures have caused ongoing problems for Notre Dame. I TOLD YOU PEOPLE. I’m not making this shit up.
By contrast, Notre Dame has THIRTEEN verbal commits right now and is working another thirty or so.