On scene for Nov. 23


Eye of the Tiger

— Despite the Hayden High School football team's heartbreaking state semifinal loss Saturday, traveling to the game from Steamboat made for one of the best community events I've been to in my three months in Routt County.

This is entirely because of how much the Hayden fans were behind their team: fog machines for the players to run through, a fierce tiger painted on the 50 yard line, cheering that didn't stop as the game progressed, a full-force grill at the concession stand, and, of course, Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger" pumped over the loud speakers.

Sick of reruns?

With the third week of the strike by television and film writers (and everyone involved in the Writers Guild of America) coming to a close, avid primetime and late-night TV watchers might have seen some of their favorite programs revert to reruns.

Writers and producers are reportedly reconvening for talks after the Thanksgiving holiday, but until things get worked out, here are some of the suggestions I've received for how to fill the hours you might normally spend watching "The Office":

Turner Classic Movies: The most immediate perk of TCM, which is available in most cable and satellite packages, is that everything is commercial-free.

Past that, the movie selection spans most of cinema history and includes only films worth watching. I caught "Mr. Holland's Opus" for the first time in several years a couple of weekends ago. Sure, the ending is massively disappointing (Richard Dreyfuss's character spent his entire career writing a three-minute "symphony"?) But as with a lot of the movies shown on this channel, "Mr. Holland's Opus" is one that is well made, sentimental and well acted. And it's one you might forget about if it didn't occasionally make it to TV.

"Project Runway," or anything on Bravo: Bravo does an excellent job of taking reality TV and de-trashing it. "Project Runway," which just started its fourth season, follows aspiring designers - all of whom are talented - through a competition to win a chance at designing their own clothing line. It has all the emotion and drama of any series you might find on a major network and gets it from the contestants (not the writers). "Top Chef" is a winner as well.

"Ninja Warrior": This one comes on G4, which likely isn't included in basic cable deals. But if you get that channel, check this out: It's like a Japanese "American Gladiators," with more likeable contestants and seemingly impossible obstacles.

Read a book.

- Margaret Hair, 4 Points


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