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Thursday, September 14, 2021

outwit, outlast, outrageous
So today’s the day: The latest iteration of “Survivor” premieres in primetime tonight, with its gimmicky made-to-order controversy over racially-determined competing teams.

If I gave a rat’s ass about the show, or for reality television in general, I guess I’d be sure to be parked in front of my set tonight. As it is, this strikes me as typical behavior for a ten-year-old series that’s inevitably getting stale.

But hey. If CBS and producer Mark Burnett really wanted to spice things up, they should have borrowed a couple of my favorite vote-off-the-island concepts:

- “Survivor: South Central”. Forming alliances? Try aligning yourself with the right street gang on Crenshaw — or else get a cap busted in your ass!

Survivors will compete in many challenges including a dash from Rosecrans all the way to Atlantic Boulevard which crosses seven different gang territories within the 2 mile journey. Every three blocks, contestants will change into shirts that bear the color and tag of that neighborhood’s most hated rival gang.

- “Survivor: Jihad”. Sleeping in a straw hut on some tropical island, or hunkering down in some cave in Afghanistan — which would you rather watch some namby-pamby contestants endure?

It’s the reality show everyone is talking about. Sixteen contestants. Sixteen beards. Fifteen martyrs. One survivor. Don’t miss “Survivor: Jihad” — only on Al Jazeera.

Not to fear — I’m sure these parodies will become all too real in “Survivor” seasons to come.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/14/2006 08:38am
Category: Comedy, RealiTV Check
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Any budding restauranteurs in Tampa Bay? If so, I think I have a winning concept for you: Ethiopian cuisine.

What do I base that on? Extremely anecdotal evidence, as gleaned from this blog. Ever since this post about the shortcomings of the Bay area’s restaurant scene elicited reminiscences about the long-departed Ibex, I’ve been getting a steady stream of search inquiry hits looking for the late great restaurant. They’re from all around the world, too, and contain search terms that leave no doubt that the old Tampa establishment is the object being sought.

Think about that: Ibex was just a little restaurant tucked away in Tampa, and has been gone for six years now. And people still remember it. Now that’s an impression. I guess dining on injera-wrapped wat (spicy stew in flatbread) in the Big Guava was a unique enough experience that it left many with an indelible memory.

I never did sample the place. I knew about it, but never was compelled to visit. Maybe the old college jokes about equating Ethiopian eateries with a famine-reduced bowl of rice had something to do with it…

Of course, if there were really that many devotees of the food, Ibex never would have folded (founder Melkam Weldekidan supposedly relocated to Miami to try his luck, but a quick Web search yields nothing about him, so who knows if he was able to make a go of the concept elsewhere). And given that many of those Ibex-seekers are from outside Tampa Bay, maybe a new Ethiopian joint there would have as much hard luck as the last attempt. Still, if anyone’s feeling adventurous…

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/14/2006 08:15am
Category: Florida Livin', Food
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