HITS Daily Double
In a nutshell:
"We're willing to accommodate a broad...relationship with...getting high, engaging in small-time prostitution and avoiding...fellow NSYNC member Joey Fatone...who had a colorful cameo as...a 6-foot tall bunny...funny, charming and brimming with quiet...counter-terrorism to fight off tha competing powers and destroy tha gigantic...girl dressed in an incredible raven costume...whom he openly despised."


As You Finish Up Rockin',
Don't Forget to Fall Back
While you're busy filling your extra hour this weekend with boozing and carousing and general debauchery, try to remember a couple of things about just exactly why you have the luxury of that extra hour of sleep (or bacchanalia) in the first place. Keep in mind that Arizona—sun-loving bastards though they may be—does not observe Daylight Savings. Come to think of it, neither do Indiana and Hawaii. Also keep in mind that the concept of turning clocks forward in the spring and backward in the fall was originally posited by Benjamin Franklin. And while it has been around in America, in one form or another, since WWI, Daylight Savings wasn't really standardized until the Uniform Time Act of 1966, signed by President Lyndon Johnson. But why was this all done? Why all the clock-turning? To save energy, of course. So, if you choose to booze your extra hour away, please do so in a low energy way. Might we suggest sitting in a darkened room with a jelly jar of gin and a loaded pistol in your lap?

Listophiles Unite:
HITS is collecting artist, celebrity and weasel Top 10s of 2001 for the mag's year-end issue. We're willing to accommodate a broad definition of the term— not just albums, but TV shows, movies, books, world events, food, whatever. The issue will come out in mid-December, and our deadline for receiving lists will be the week of Nov. 19—we can't guarantee that Top 10s received after that will get in. e-mail or fax to Roy Trakin at 818-906-3797.

It's an armchair athlete's favorite time of the year, with all four major sports in effect. This weekend, the World Series (Yankees open in Phoenix against the Diamondbacks), college (Oklahoma vs. Nebraska, BCS Nos. 1 & 2) and pro football as well as ice hockey are in full swing. Meanwhile, the NBA gets set to launch Tuesday night, with Michael Jordan making his debut as a Washington Wizard against his favorite patsy, the New York Knicks. Of course, if you're a Met/Jet/Knick/Islander fan like myself, it's pure torture, which is why I'm heading down to San Diego to watch my daughter play soccer.
The World Series promises to be a rather quick affair, which is just fine by this Met fan and die-hard Yankee-hater since '62, whose team once again cruelly teased and utterly demoralized its followers, now further distressed to see the rest of the country turned into Pinstripes partisans.
OK, I can almost live with that—but having to survive the equivalent of 4,000 some-odd years wandering in the desert with the New York Jets as they pretend Lon Guyland working-class stiff Vinny Testaverde is the latest incarnation of Joe Namath is almost as depressing. Never mind having to suffer through the third coming of Air Jordan humiliating my horizontally challenged, Jew-hating Knicks, who, of course, haven't won a championship since I was 22, had a full head of hair and idolized the New York Dolls.
Still, there's some hope. My Islanders, flush from new owner Charles Wang opening up his wallet to acquire the likes of Alexei Yashin, Michael Peca and Chris Osgood, are promising a return to the form that brought them four Stanley Cups in the early '80s. Still the greatest team I've ever had the pleasure of rooting for. But in a cruel trick of fate, it's ice hockey, which no one gives a puck about anyway. Woe is me. —Roy Trakin

John Mayer, Room for Squares (Aware/Columbia):
You've gotta hand it to Columbia Records. As this commercial juggernaut moves massive tonnage, it also continues its patronage of pantheon artists like Bob Dylan (who's been moving impressive numbers himself lately) and Leonard Cohen, while, just as significantly, finding and developing the potential inheritors of their mantles.
When I first heard Pete Yorn's stellar debut, musicforthemorningafter, early this year, I figured the best-case career scenario for this smart-pop unknown would be critical acclaim, cult status and rent money, if he was lucky (like so many of my favorite acts over the years). But Columbia approached the project as if it actually had commercial potential, somehow telescoped the artist-development process and transformed a niche artist into a budding star.
Now, I don't know whether the label can pull off a similar coup with neophyte John Mayer, who comes to Columbia by way of its deal with heartland A&R source Aware and sharp-eared Gregg Latterman (who came up with Train), but I do know Mayer's a keeper. The songs on Room for Squares tumble out affably—but with a hint of Nick Drake-like melancholy—on lilting, nearly jazzy grooves, banks of burbling acoustic and electric guitars and disarmingly intimate lyrics ("My stupid mouth/Has got me in trouble/I said too much again"). Over repeated listenings, the details connect, revealing a young artist of wit, style, substance and admirable restraint; if he'd come along 30 years earlier, David Geffen would've signed this kid to his Asylum label.
Among the delights I've come across so far (I'm still in the process of absorbing the record) are "Your Body Is a Wonderland," which playfully meshes languid eroticism and puppy-dog eagerness; the sparkling, painterly "Neon," as charged and fluid as a vintage Earth, Wind & Fire song; and opening track "No Such Thing," a touching romantic rumination in the grand tradition of Nick Carroway and Holden Caulfield.
Mayer came by the HITS office a few weeks back to play a couple of songs, and he's a natural—funny, charming and brimming with quiet confidence. Remarkably, Columbia may have another one here. As long as quality artists like Yorn and Mayer get the opportunity to have careers, there's hope for the music bizand for the future of music itself. Bud Scoppa

K-PAX (Universal):
There is Oscar buzz surrounding Kevin Spacey's performance as a visitor from the titular planet, who strikes up a relationship with shrink Jeff Bridges and becomes attached, a la E.T. and Jerry Lewis (circa Visit To A Small Planet), to life on earth. Which is ironic, because Bridges once played the alien (and received a Best Oscar nomination) in John Carpenter's Starman. Mary McCormack (Private Parts) and Alfre Woodard co-star. The trailers look intriguing, and director Iain Softley has shown promise in the past in both the fictionalized Beatles film Backbeat and the Henry James adaptation, Wings of a Dove. The Decca/UMG soundtrack album features a score by Edward Shearmur, while the www.k-pax.com website offers a chance to win the Spacey character's sunglasses, a peak inside his notebook, a K-Pax star chart, a patient file, photo gallery, cast information, trailers, TV spots, etc.

Life as a House (New Line): More Oscar chatter surrounds Kevin Kline as an architect diagnosed with terminal cancer who decides to finish building his dream house. The activity brings him together with his disgruntled son (Hayden Christensen, who plays the role of Anakin Skywalker in the forthcoming Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones), who spends most of his time getting high, engaging in small-time prostitution and avoiding his father. Academy fave Kristin Scott Thomas plays Kline's ex-wife who once shared his house and his dream, while Mary Steenburgen portrays his sexually voracious neighbor. It's apparently a real tear-jerker, with longtime Academy Award-winning producer (Rocky, Raging Bull, The Right Stuff, GoodFellas, They Shoot Horses, Don't They?, True Confessions, Round Midnight, Betrayed) and director Irwin Winkler (Guilty by Suspicion, The Net) at the helm and award-winning cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond behind the lens. The website at www.lifeasahouse.com, offers downloads, photos, film and production notes and information on cast and filmmakers.

On the Line (Miramax): Have you ever met the perfect girl and let her get away? Hey, I thought that was the plot of Serendipity. It's retreaded here with NSYNC's Lance Bass as the lovelorn Kevin Gibbons, a shy advertising employee who meets his dream girl (Emmanuelle Chriqui of A.I., Snow Day and Detroit Rock City) on the El train in Chicago, but doesn't remember to get her phone number. Fellow NSYNC member Joey Fatone co-stars as, what else, his best friend. The movie is being platformed by Miramax, not wanting to make the same disastrous mistake as Glitter, which opened wide, and closed twice as fast. We'll see if it's NSYNC's version of A Hard Day's Night. The website, www.getontheline.com, features a chance to win an autographed movie poster from the now-defunct BOP magazine, free tickets and music. The Jive Records soundtrack includes the title track by the On the Line All-Stars and songs by NSYNC, BBMAK, Britney Spears, Vitamin C, Richie Sambora, Blaque and Joey Fatone.

Bones (New Line): Spike Lee cinematographer Ernest Dickerson (Juice) helms this horror story featuring rap star Snoop Dogg (who had a colorful cameo as a wheelchair-bound dealer in Training Day) as the title character, Jimmy Bones. Bones is a spirit, a la The Crow, seeking vengeance on those who betrayed him 20 years earlier and, oh yeah, looking to clean up the neighborhood while he's at it. The movie co-stars blaxploitation queen Pam Grier (Jackie Brown) and appears steeped in the particulars of the black horror genre (Blacula). The hip-hop-laden Dogghouse/Priority Records soundtrack features Snoop, along with Xzibit, Kurupt, Nate Dogg, OutKast, D12, Kokane, Cypress Hill and a reunion with fellow N.W.A. member MC Ren. The website, at www.bones.movie.com, has all the requisite elements: plot synopsis, cast, filmmakers, downloads, trailer, music and ticket info.

Thirteen Ghosts (Columbia/WB): An updated remake of the classic William Castle movie where you had to wear special glasses to actually see the ghosts. From the coming attractions, this horror flick seems to up the ante considerably and now the glasses are worn onscreen rather than off. Eccentric uncle F. Murray Abraham leaves his haunted house with an agenda all its own to his family, who are joined by an offbeat ghost hunter determined to free the spirits. Eventually, the inhabitants figure out the house is a riddle which contains the key to their imminent salvation or destruction. The film co-stars Tony Shalhoub (Galaxy Quest, Spy Kids and the upcoming Coen brothers flick, The Man Who Wasn't There), American Pie's Shannon Elizabeth and rapper Rah Digga, the female member of Busta Rhymes' Flipmode Squad making her feature acting bow. Produced by Joel Silver and Robert Zemeckis and directed by visual effects Oscar winner Steve Beck in his feature bow, the movie's production values look impeccable, as reflected in the comprehensive website at http://www.13ghosts.com.

Donnie Darko (Pandora): Harvey on acid, this Sundance entry looks like it could be a midnight cult sleeper. Written and directed by 26-year-old newcomer Richard Kelly, it's the story of a disturbed teenager (played by Columbia University alumnus Jake Gyllenhaal of Bubble Boy fame in what many are calling a star-making turn) who manages to be out of his bedroom when a jet engine accidentally crashes through it. That near-death experience is followed by the appearance of a six-foot tall bunny with giant teeth, who instructs him to create havoc both destructive and creative because the end of the world might (or might not) be near. The movie apparently gains significance since the events of Sept. 11. The impressive cast includes ER's Noah Wyle, Drew Barrymore (who executive-produced the film), Mary McDonnell, Patrick Swayze as a phony self-help guru a la Tom Cruise in Magnolia and The Graduate's Katherine Ross. The website, at www.donniedarko.com, is suitably ominous, unveiling the story by encouraging interactive responses that reveal documents that fill you in on information about Donnie in a decidedly nonlinear manner. Between K-PAX's prot and Mr. Darko, this is apparently the week for charismatic psychotics. —R.T.

And You Thought Jacko Was the Scariest Celebrity:
Did Sharon Tate see a vision of her own death while staying at the Paul Bern and Jean Harlowe house? Is the unproduced screenplay Atuk cursed? What could a seemingly harmless "Eskimo comedy" have to do with the deaths of John Belushi, John Candy, Sam Kinison and Chris Farley? And just who is the blonde in the mirror by the lobby elevator at the Roosevelt Hotel? The answers, or at least the explanations, can be found at Hollywood Hauntings, an excellent resource for all the weird sightings and unexplained goings-on in a town already known for the weird and the unexplained. The site contains tales that "range from Hollywood urban legends to documented brushes with the unknown"—from the continued malevolent effect of James Dean's Porsche Spyder to Native American warriors riding down Hollywood Boulevard to the tidy ghost that dusts Mitzi Gaynor's chandeliers. After perusing the site, you, too, may wonder if it is just a coincidence that "Hollywood" and "boo" both contain two O's. Hmm. All right, we wanted that to sound scarier than it did. Just pretend you're frightened and everyone goes away happy.
Jeff Drake

New York Jets at CAROLINA + 2

Now, yer prob'ly wonderin' why anybody in their right mind would decide to pick the Noo York Jets two weeks in a row. I ain't in my right mind. But I do know this: Carolina cain't stop the Jets' runnin' game. Pick is the Jets—J-E-T-S, Jets! Jets! Jets!

San Francisco + 2 at CHICAGO
Well, hell, the danged ol' Bears have won four in a row for the first time since Heck was a pup. But this here is the NF of L. The 49ers had a week off to git prepared fer this, and let's face it—the Bears cain't win five in a row. I'm takin' the Niners. —Guy W.T. Goggles
(Year-to-date: 3-3)

Charles R. Cross, Heavier Than Heaven (Hyperion):
In the wake of Courtney Love's latest online rantings, the best rock biography since Jerry Hopkins and Danny Sugerman's epic Jim Morrison tome, No One Here Gets Out Alive, puts the lie to a number of commonly accepted myths. Of course, given that Courtney was a primary source for ex-Seattle Rocket editor Charles R. Cross' comprehensive, well-researched book on Kurt Cobain, it's no surprise that she receives such sympathetic treatment. According to Cross, it's Kurt who dragged Love into his heroin hell, not the other way around, and it was Courtney who inspired Cobain's muse as much as vice versa. That makes sense, and Cross is pretty meticulous in documenting his theories. Kurt's story is like Morrison's in another way too, in that you are left with the nagging thought that neither should have played out like it didand yet both, on a cosmic level, were inevitable from the very beginning. As the L.A. Times' Robert Hilburn pointed out, you don't even need to know Cobain's tale to appreciate his music, but I disagree that the work is enough to redeem the tragedy at its heart. In fact, I've found it almost impossible to listen to Nirvana since. Cobain's pain becomes even more palpable, like a soul in torment, but also like an infant's selfish wails—trapped in the vacuum of his own grisly, self-inflicted demise. Obviously, Kurt didn't go out with a whimper, refusing to go gently into that good night, but you're left thinking it's a damn shame he couldn't enjoy his family or the fruits of his labor. —R.T.

Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty: That's right kidz, LPzeee iz back, & this week tha shit getz ugly and dirtlike my drawers, but that's anutha review. Anyways, I must tell you that one of tha most anticipated games of 2001 haz arrived & tha pre-orders are bananas, cuz for more than a year, gamerz have been waiting like a marksman trained on a target for tha next chapter of Solid Snake's espionage mission into the unknown. This November, the PlayStation 2 thriller Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty explodes with staggering visuals and a riveting storyline. Tha sequel to one of tha most popular games of all time, Metal Gear Solid 2 features heart-stopping stealth-based action and state-of-the-art graphics. Players assume tha role of Solid Snake, a one-man army determined to stop a deadly high-tech weapon from falling into tha hands of tha wrong people. Snake must utilize hiz skills in stealth, weaponry and counter-terrorism to fight off tha competing powers and destroy tha gigantic killing machine, Metal Gear Ray. Wow, so you feel me on this one? I hope so. Get down & dirty.
Latin Prince AKA King of Kings

"I never threw an illegal pitch. The trouble is, once in a while I would toss one that ain't never been seen by this generation." —Satchel Paige

You Won't Get This Stuff in the New Yorker: Despite the fact that he moved here awhile ago, New Yorkers can't seem to get enough of Momus, who's appearing at the Knitting Factory on Friday with Stereo Total. On Saturday, head to Maxwells for Kyle and Cait/Owen. Kyle and Cait[hlin] are two-thirds of the incredible Rainer Maria. Owen is Mike Kinsella of Cap'n Jazz and Owls. Together, the set will consist of some of Mike's solo material as well as the first glimpse of Kyle's solo material from his upcoming non-Rainer Maria musical venture. And if all that wasn't enough, that's just the opening act for Kristin Hersh. Sunday brings the just announced Death Cab for Cutie show to Mercury Lounge. (The band will also be playing Bowery Ballroom on Saturday.) Death Cab's new album takes a few listens to fully get into, but the group's live shows are always fabulous. And if you're riding the F train to Long Island on Saturday night and see a girl dressed in an incredible raven costume, it'll probably be me. —Heidi Anne-Noel

George Clinton, our fourth & fifth vice president, was born in Little Britain, NY, on July 26, 1739. Clinton was the only American to serve in both the White House and in Parliament. Twice elected veep, Clinton succeeded Aaron Burr as Thomas Jefferson's second vice president (from 1805-1808). Then, failing his presidential ambitions in 1808, Clinton accepted the second spot again (1809-1812) under James Madison, whom he openly despised. Clinton was elected to the Second Continental Congress, but, having been commissioned a brigadier general in the militia in December 1775, he was absent for the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The outbreak of the Revolution saw Clinton entrusted with the defense of the Hudson River valley. But his lack of tactical skill led to the loss of Fort Montgomery and the burning of Esopus—to which Clinton said he didn't "need no water" and let the muthahfuckah burn. Clinton became New York's first governor in 1777. Later, as the mastermind behind both Parliament and Funkadelic, Clinton would invite all of America to fly with him on the Mothership. Best Anagram of his Name: Erect long, go in.

Plus Lucky Numbers!
Our fortunes and lucky numbers are guaranteed to give you one extra hour this week.
You will be advanced socially, without any special effort.
9, 14, 17, 32, 36, 43.

Because "Teutonic Bastards" Was Just Too Wordy:
According to a ruling by Britain's Advertising Standards Agency, the term "kraut"—used by Britons to ridicule Germans since WWI—is now a perfectly acceptable word. The ASA said it was no more than "a light-hearted reference to a national stereotype unlikely to cause serious or widespread offense." The watchdog office's verdict followed a complaint about a direct marketing leaflet advertising sanding disks—ironically made by a German company. The leaflet, sent out just before the England-Germany football match in September, carried a picture of a German footballer with the slogan: "The krauts are coming—with unbeatable quality." The German firm, DRONCO Abrasives, said they thought the term was a "humorous reference to Germans' allegedly high consumption of Sauerkraut" and had no negative meaning. But Germans in Britain failed to see the humor. "It is offensive. If you were called cabbage, you would not like it. It is the same for us," a German Embassy spokesman told the Daily Mail newspaper. The term stems from the wartime belief that German soldiers ate vast quantities of sauerkraut—chopped pickled cabbage.

Upcoming Birthdays
Oct. 26-Nov. 1
26—Bootsy Collins (50)
27—John Cleese (62)
28—Jonas Salk (would have been 87)
29—Winona Ryder (30)
30—Charles Atlas (would have been 108) & Grace Slick (62)
31—John Candy (would have been 51)
Nov. 1—Larry Flynt (59)

Special Events
October is ROCKtober!
28—Daylight Savings Ends
29—Oh! Day (Greece)
31—Halloween, Samhain & Hunter's Full Moon
Nov. 1—Mid Shaaban

Spring Forward, Fall Back—Got It? In New York City this weekend, it finally starts to look like fall: Partly cloudy with highs approaching 50 and lows in the upper 30s and low 40s. Brrrr. Think I'll stick to the West Coast, where it will be sunny until the clouds roll in Sunday night. Highs in the low 70s and lows in the upper 50s. If you were a dumbass and moved from Los Angeles to Chicago, like a friend of mine, you'll be regretting it this weekend. Were those snow flurries you saw this week? Expect partly cloudy skies with highs in the mid-40s and lows in the mid-30s on Saturday, and temps a little warmer on Sunday. For some reason it's always up to the meteorologist to remind you to set your clocks, so don't forget Saturday is the end of Daylight Savings Time. Set the clock back an hour and enjoy one more hour of sleep this weekend. It's very helpful in avoiding hangovers. David Simutis, Senior Meteorology Correspondent/
Hangover Specialist

Blair's motives are called into question when she develops a friendship with a handsome—and retarded—admirer.