The bad part was when, just a few blocks from home, I veered too far to the right and my bike wheel skidded off the sidewalk and into a rut between sidewalk and grass, causing it to spin out of control and crash. As I pitched forward, my heavy backpack full of books flew up and gave me an extra thump of momentum towards the concrete, where I broke my fall between left knee and right hand (mostly the latter) with the bike on top of me. It didn't feel that bad at the time, other than stinging like a bitch, but I now have a massive lump forming a huge bruise just below the knee, and in addition to my scraped/bloodied palm, my hand & wrist are swollen and stiff. Last night I could barely even flex it and couldn't lift anything heavier than a small bottle of water. It's a bit better this morning, but still limited in mobility. I can still type, thankfully, although the keys farther right than "i-k-m" aren't as easy to hit. I'm hoping it's nothing more than a strain, and will go away on its own in a few days.
But, despite my inability to grip a writing utensil last night for note-taking purposes, I will not let that keep me from my running commentary on SYTYCD's belated results show!
THIS is So You THINK You Can DANCE!
-The dance of the crazed, possibly carnivorous, kelp-covered and tongue-flicking sea monsters is extremely disturbing, and not in a good way at all, especially when done to such an oddly average bit of rambling Tom Waits music. It goes on forever, and I refused to believe this was Wade Robson, because he's been so good this season, upgrading from "random insanity" to "unique yet artistic storytelling," but this was a complete and total backslide.
-You see how Cat very carefully skirts around them and avoids being touched? Very sensible of her. What's not sensible is the Little Black Dress she's wearing, which would be cute if not for the unfortunate and possibly Lacey-solo-inspired puff of feathers obscuring most of the torso section.
-Wow, Debbie Allen looks so much younger and more coherent when she lets her hair out of that high bun. I think I like her now. And I know I should be all happy for Ultra Lucky Cedric that he got a scholarship to her academy, but my anti-Cedric sentiment just runs too deep.
-"The African Dance Music Ensemble," huh? So long as it's not full of little singing African children (*cough* AMERICANIDOL), I'm on board.
-Ooh, this guy is amazing. I forget how much I love percussion music all on its own, and what's more, this sort of tribal dancing has got to be one of my favorite genres on the world. It just seems to get at the heart of dancing as expression much more than, say, tangos around the ballroom. It's just so invigorating, you can't help but feel the energy and --
-WHAT THE HELL, FOX, EFF YOU AND YOUR STORM ALERTS! I hate when local meteorologists crash into programming to bring you 3-5 minute discussions of severe storm activity within about a 100-mile radius of where I actually am. Why can't you just stick with the scrolling marquee? I don't need to see your reassuring face telling me what to expect. I don't care what's happening elsewhere, and when there's a storm outside my window, I'll be able to see it for myself. If that storm is dangerous, I will hear the tornado sirens for myself. GO BACK TO MY DANCE PROGRAM IMMEDIATELY! Great, now it's in commercials.
Sabra Solo: She looks good with her hair straightened and in a ponytail. She has a kick-ass bunch of moves, very impressive leaps and twirls, and actual dancing in between, rather than just bending and swaying/waving her arms.
Lauren Solo: Lauren's wild hair looks awful, as do the...netted legging things under her shorts that make her skin look as though it's either diseased or coated in tattoo ink, but nevertheless she is my hero for dancing to "Heartbreaker," which I think is the best song you could possibly use for a jazz solo.
Lacey Solo: This is my favorite solo of hers ever...I don't think there was anything sex-kittenish about it at all! Which is good, because my only knowledge of "What I Like About You" by Lillix is that it was used as the theme song for an adorable and thoroughly wholesome WB comedy of the same name, and as such I associate it with fairly clean and lighthearted fun. In all seriousness, I really did enjoy this one (especially that ending, where she was in a contortion that makes me think she's unbeatable at Twister), though Sabra was probably best among the girls.
Pasha Solo: Zoot Suit Riot, by the Cherry-Poppin' Daddies! I love this song because we got to play it at one of my middle school band concerts. It's great swing music, although the name of the artist always made me more than a little uncomfortable, particularly as our director announced it to an audience full of parents. I mean, really. Oh, right, the dance.
Even though the suspenders-over-bare-chest look is incredibly stupid and I think Pasha would have sold it better with a shirt, the dancing was great: high-energy, high-fun, great ballroom kicks, and an amusing quote (they've been in short supply this year).
Cat: So what's going on, is it wash day? No clean shirts?
Pasha: I was ironing my shirt, and I burned it! *innocently surprised look*
Neil Solo: Ahhhh...this is what it's all about. Although I get tired of that weird, snakelike arm movement he does, the leaps and pirouettes/fouettes more than make up for it, and his endings - this time, a board-like fall backwards that turns into a somersault at the last second - are always neat and different.
Danny: Ditto on the above, minus the annoying arm movements and unique endings, and plus a fan kick and running split leaps. I don't know why Cat bothers asking him if he ever thought he'd make it this far; of course he did.
-Oh, SYTY, talking about helping the underpriveleged impoverished...don't make me hate you like I hate Idol Gives Back. It doesn't quite give me a sour taste in my mouth, but all "special charity events" strike me as a bit sanctimonious. Especially when all the people being interviewed serve to do nothing more than remind me that some people are just dumb, and opportunity seems wasted on them. This is how people like Fifty Cent rise to frightening power.
-The Krumping routine is significantly more entertaining than most of the musical guests, but it doesn't hold a candle to specialized studio training. Even ballroom deserves more respect than this. I mean, it's fun, but classy? The kind of thing I'd admit to liking in polite company, and/or pay money for? Not so much.
-Dear Fox Weather Alert: Thank you for interrupting the commercials/recaps this time.
-By the way, I feel that now is an appropriate time to mention that between last Wednesday and today, I have not only gotten that Jupiter Boys song stuck in my head, I have watched Lacey/Pasha's hip-hop dance no fewer than fifty times, and the number just keeps going up. I am *not* exaggerating. I am in love with it. Even Mom asked me to rewind it, which she never does (although it was Sabra/Neil's paso doble that she really loved).
-Ackity flail! Lacey's in the finale! FRICK! I did want her to be one of the girls, but I also have this sick feeling that Sabra's got the biggest fan base of all, so I figured my only chance of Lauren getting in was if Lacey didn't. Mom's happy, though; after having only seen a couple of episodes throughout the competition, Lacey is Mom's favorite and she didn't even know she was Benji's sister.
-WHAT?! NOOOOOOOOO! DANNY'S IN THE FINALE! NO! THE HORROR! ONE OF MY BELOVED BOYS ISN'T GOING TO BE IN THE FINALE! How dare you sacrifice one of my blondes?! This is worse than Jaimie vs. Lauren.
-Ooh, audience is pissed about only getting half a show. Good audience. Now start throwing things! Chairs, sunglasses, smuggled food and drinks...charge the stage! Hold Cat hostage! Stop making ineffectual sad faces and thumbs-down booing! After all, the "lockdown" situation clearly didn't stop things getting leaked to Wikipedia anyway...which you really ought to have known would happen. Integrity of the show, yeah right.
-"The following promotional announcement contains coarse language...Viewer Discretion Advised"? I've never seen that before. What is it? Oh...it's an excruciatingly long (two and a half minutes!) trailer for Kitchen Nightmares, starring Fox's personal Satan Chef. How the hell many shows can Gordon Ramsey make out of the same basic premise? More to the point, who are the people watching this idiocy? It's just screaming. And insults. Followed by more screaming and a bit of rough language to spice up the insults, delivered in a yell. As far as I can tell, it's Jerry Springer in a British accent and apron. What could possibly be appealing about that? I have a headache from it already.
-Look at that poor, empty studio. You know, this is a really raw deal not just for the audience but for the last two dancers to get cut. Not only do they get wrenched away from the finale just when they can practically touch it, they don't even get to hear the last rallying cheers from their fans for consolation. BOO-URNS, I SAY.
-BOOOOOOOOOO-URRRRRRRRNS! BOO! Damn your Sabra-supporting hides, America. I'm sick of her, so sick of her you don't even know. I want Lauren! *chants* Laur-en! Laur-en! I just, ugh, I can't believe Sabra's in. She's dull. *sighs* Look at all those fun times Lauren had with Neil. I'll miss that.
-Okay, right now I don't even know which guy I want to make it in. On the one hand, I totally want Pasha, who manages to simultaneously be both sex on legs and adorable smiles, to win the entire thing - plus, I want Neil standing next to Lauren one last time. On the other hand, I think I like Neil more overall, plus remember when I jokingly said how cool it would be if Neil and Danny were somehow both in the finale, and they got to do a contemporary duet? That could actually happen now. But...but...I DON'T KNOW! Just open the envelope!
-*sobs* Nooooo, Pasha can't goooo! What happened to his fan base?? What happened to the masses of swooning fangirls? You do all know Danny is gay, right? Come ON! ARGH! I guess I did want Pasha more, or maybe all those weeks of being "sure" that Neil and Lauren were going home took their toll on my optimism. Or maybe it's that I just can't picture one being there without the other. I think that's it.
-I love how Neil looks genuinely stunned to hear his name, though. I think he'd already accepted that his ousting was a foregone conclusion, and then BAM! On the other hand, he looks so incredulously happy that I can't help but love him.
-The hell, Lauren, what is with the jumping on Danny, followed by endless hugging and kissing? Wrong boy! Wrong boy! You are robbing me of my very last chance at raw material on which to base my daydreams! Don't make me create yet another Pasha pairing. Because I will. For example, I notice that Lacey looks unhappier than I've ever seen her on this show. In fact, I'm not sure I've ever seen her look unhappy at all; she must really hate this.
-Lauren, good Christ, Neil's rubbing your shoulder - kindly untuck your face from Danny's neck already! *10 seconds later* FINALLY, thank you; good thing the cameras rolled on for an extra-long time tonight due to the lack of content in this results show. I got my proper L/N hug, and am duly placated. Kind of.
Okay, here's how I feel about the Final Four of 2007...last year, I would have been happy with anyone except Heidi winning; this year it's the opposite - if Neil doesn't win, I'll be crushed. Further elaboration:
Sabra: No, no, no, NO, I still can't believe she didn't get eliminated before the top 10. Didn't she start off being as invisible as Ashlee? I refuse to believe that her winning is even a remote possibility. I want Neil in that slot, obviously, but what I really feel is "anyone but Sabra, God, please." My dislike has suddenly spiked off the charts.
Lacey: Remember when I said "Dear God, please don't let Lacey win"? I take it back. Partly because I despise the thought of Sabra winning, and partly because my mood towards her has softened considerably in the last couple of weeks. That still doesn't excuse her weeks of hyperactivity, goofy faces and/or sex-kitten act, and I stand by my earlier opinions, but I kinda like her now. I still don't want her to actually win, but I would be only half-devastated if she did, rather than completely devastated. I've always kind of thought that with her talent (she does have some, after all) and heritage, she would be okay as a finale participant, if I could just be assured she wouldn't win.
Danny: This is where things got mucked up. What happened to the days where everybody thought Danny was an arrogant ass and he kept landing in the bottom 2 or 3? I miss those days. Because as I've said all along, Danny is amazingly skilled - he deserved to go far and be rewarded for it - but he didn't have the extra spark of personality needed to make him a *favorite.* He's like the Melinda Doolittle of dance - you praise him for being technically proficient, but you don't take him all the way. FOOLS. I mean, I had no delusions about Lauren, only desperate hope - but I honestly thought that Pasha and Neil were shoo-ins for the finale, and then Danny upsets everything and makes me OH so very angry.
Neil: Neil is the only one of these finalists I have loved unequivocally for both performance, personality, and appearance; ergo, he needs to be crowned America's Favorite Dancer. He just does. I know the judges tout all this song and dance about how just making it this far is a huge accomplishment, but that's BS, just like when high school teachers told you that learning was more important than getting an A. See, if you didn't get A's, you didn't get to go to awards ceremonies and win letters and certificates. And if you don't win SYTYCD, you don't get to go down in the books as the winner and subsequently get asked to come back and perform on future installments of this show. Benji got a featured solo and his own choreography segment - Donyelle, Travis and Heidi were lucky if they got glimpsed in the background as an assistant choreographer. Now think long and hard about how you want to see more of, America. THINK ABOUT IT.
Actually, don't think about it. Accept my word as your overlord that the correct answer is "Neil Haskell."