Best Treadmill Movies
The main criteria for a good treadmill movie are:
- High Sound Quality: Treadmills are noisy, and
you have to be able to hear the dialogue over all that racket.
If sound quality is poor, loudness is a good substitute.
- Plot: Has to be good enough to take your mind
off the fact that you're running. Of your own free will. Without
being chased by Huns. Yet can't be so complicated that you can't
follow it while your brain is swimming in endorphins.
- Interest Level: Has to hold your interest,
but can't be so engaging that you can't bear to divide it into
- Inspiration: Certain movies, particularly martial
arts and action films, inspire you to get in shape. Others inspire
an afternoon on the couch with a sixer of Guinness and a bag of
crisps. You be the judge.
Sound quality is good, except in the scenes with Robert de Niro.
Plot moves quickly. There are a couple of identity switching complications,
so I'd recommend watching it once in a non-treadmill setting, just
to get the events straight. And if you find your run becoming uninspired,
just pretend Robert de Niro is chasing you with those long, spooky
fingernails and a half-eaten hard boiled egg.
Big Trouble in Little China. Monsters, Spooky
Martial Arts Curses, and Kurt Russell in a tank top . Who could
ask for anything more?
Fellowship of the Ring.
Divides up nicely into about a week and a half of exciting treadmill
viewing. However, there's a lot of dramatic whispering and talking
in low tones, so if you can't jack up the sound really high,
then you should wait until you've memorized the dialog to take this
one into the exercise room.
Good sound quality, plot is easy to follow (ghosts bad; ghostbusting
good), and the dialogue keeps you laughing so you forget what you're
actually doing there. Hm. You usually don't see this
kind of behavior in a major appliance.
I know, I know. But it makes bitchin' treadmill viewing, and the
sound quality is excellent for our purposes. Where the hell
are you from, anyway, Johnny?
The Hunt for Red October
Anyone who watches this film and doesn't want to be Jack Ryan jumping
into a stormy ocean is too far down the glutton path to be saved
at this point. And you can't be Jack Ryan if your idea of exercise
is getting up to get your own damn Guinness instead of asking your
wife to get off the treadmill and get it for you. And...oh yeah...it's
got Sean Connery in it!
Seriously, who could watch badass monks cracking wise while wiping
the floor with the bad guys, and seriously think Guinness and crisps
is a worthwhile way to spend the afternoon? Also contains a nice
moral subplot about the evils of gluttony vs. the righteous aescetic
King of the Hill
Ok, it's not a movie, but it meets all the criteria, plus
it's exactly half an hour long, and comes on every night about the
time I get home from work. For those who haven't seen it, it's an
animated family comedy set in the state that gave us The Unholy
Trinity of H.W., G.W., and Jeb Bush. And if you watch it, everything
becomes clear, I tell you what.
Men In Black
Beginning to see a pattern here? Monsters, people who have to be
in shape to chase monsters, and dudes you wouldn't kick out of the
A light plot, lots of martial arts action, and eye candy in the
flavors of Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson. Yee-ha! Ride 'em in Rawhide!
Without A Clue
Come on, we all know Watson was the brains behind the whole Sherlock
Holmes thing. Nice light viewing, and stands up well to repetition.
And watching Michael Caine and Ben Kingsley piss at each other for
an hour and a half is well worth the corny wrap-up.
|World's Most Suboptimal Orthographic Conventions
Gaelic, Irish Who got stoned and
thought of this?
English, British Just ask anyone who's had to
learn it. Do you people deliberately stick in silent syllables to
take a piss at foreigners who try to sound out things like Worcesteresterminsterlancastershirebridge?
(say: Wesbridge.) And what's up with the superfluous
English, American Just as bad as British, only
without the superfluous u.
Chinese First, what kind of an alphabet takes
a lifetime to master? Do you know how many bad sci fi novels will
never be written because of this? Also: pictographs? Come on.
No, I don't see the horsey with the little dude on it, and why the
fuck does that mean "motherboard"? Although admittedly
it's very cool that Mandarins and Cantonese can communicate in writing
using this system, though their spoken languages are mutually unintelligible.
Polish Polish comparative and historical phonology
rocks my world. But let's face it, this language is badly in need
of some righteous orthographic reform.
Hungarian Reverse Polish digraphs, and I'm not
even going to go into the case system.
Japanese Three different alphabets? Dudes, I don't
care if you pick the syllabary, the phonetic system, or the pictographs,
but for the love of all that is good, just pick one.
|Songs that get stuck in your head
A Fifth Of You (Joni Mitchell)
Why is it that the songs most likely to get stuck in there are the
ones that are most likely to make dogs howl and children cry in
fear when they come out of my mouth?
For the Longest Time (Billy Joel version) Come
on, it's a great song! Let's sing it! Whoa-oh-oh-oh dum dum
dum for the longest time....
Get Your Freak On (Missy Eliot) 'Nuff said.
Kid Charlemagne (Steely Dan) I'm
not the only one who thinks so. Ok, anything by Steely Dan.
And where the fuck is Annandale, anyway?
Possum Kingdom (The Toadies)
Hospitality (Ludacris) Try explaining this
when it suddenly comes belting out in a meeting.
Star (Erasure) The mistake is actually believing
you can sing like that guy. But the lyrics are so clever
you can't help yourself. That's how this stuff gets stuck, I'm convinced
Theme song from 1980s commercial for "Pull-ups"
training pants. This will haunt you for the rest of your
life. I wouldn't do that to you.
What You Need (INXS) No wonder...ahhh never mind.
You're So Vain (Carly Simon) You're where
you should be all the time, and when you're not you're with some
underworld spy or the wife of a close friend the wife of a close