Here we go on the roller coaster ride that is the commercial hell called American Idol. I'll confess to not really caring who wins. Some of the winners that excited me have flopped and the ones I never liked have been huge commercial successes. Some of the losers have fared better than the winners and in all cases, it did not really matter in my everyday life. I've never purchased an Idol product directly, but I do drink my share of CocaCola. What keeps me coming back year after year is the fact that behind all the mirrors, lights, and drapery, American Idol is just an old-fashioned talent contest. I can remember waiting to watch the Ted Mack Amateur Hour when I was a kid (yes, that old!). It's still the same story. I always enjoyed the moment when someone steps into the spotlight and shows us what they got. It's the do or die moment. Some soar, some crash. It is what keeps us coming back.

This is the sixth season of American Idol and it is do or die time for the boys. For some reason Idol has chosen a dozen as the number of contestants to work with at one time. Twelve is a sublime number, a number that has a perfect number of divisors, and the sum of its divisors is also a perfect number. Since there is a subset of 12's proper divisors that add up to 12 (all of them but with 4 excluded), 12 is a semiperfect number. I copied and pasted that. It wasn't on the tip of my tongue and probably not on your's either. But now I know that 12 is a sublime number, but an imperfect one. Let's proceed to changing that imperfect number to a perfect 10. (Actually 10 is a semi-meandric number, which pretty much describes my writing style, but i digress/meander)

I'm doing everything I can to ignore the host and the judges. How high will Paula get this season? How mean will Simon be and who will Randy mock? I don't really care. They are filler at this point. I have them on /ignore.

Someone always has to go first and tonight it is Rudy Cardenas singing “Free Ride”. He hits all the notes at first, but that doesn't mean I like the tone of his voice or the jerky white boy swivel of his hips. It doesn't get better as it progresses, it gets worse. Toward the end he wobbles off key and yells. It was an inconsistent performance overall. I wouldn't vote for him at this point, but we've got a long way to go. Going first is never easy. It can make or break you. I'm calling this one broken.

Brandon Rogers has a lot of experience singing background for Christina, Justin, and Usher. If he's not good, someone been's wrong before. He is singing “Rock with You”. It's an energetic song and Brandon tries, but he sounds nervous the first half. His background singers sound like they took too much Valium before the show. Brandon is not looking like a star tonight, but more like a background singer himself. He sang the chorus as though singing background, emphasizing the wrong parts for a soloist and traveling off-key several times. Better luck next time, if there is one.

Sundance Head's claim to needed fame is a dad, Roy Head with one semi-hit in 1965, “Treat Her Right”. It's not that big a legacy and his choice of song, “Knights in White Satin” seems like a strange and ill-suited song for this contest. It was a bit choir boy, a big off-key, and a bit amateurish. Very Saturday night too much to drink karaoke. This reeked. He barely got the last place in the twelve and this hasn't done anything to further his time here. This is my first choice to definitely go home. He needs more roadwork.

Paul Kim is the tall, good-looking barefoot Asian singer. His song starts out a bit sub-sonic. I keep hoping it moves into human range soon. Oh. There is is. He is singing “Careless Whisper”. He moves into a better range soon, then he goes off-key for a while and croaks to an end. Simon suggests he put his shoes back on. I'd try anything after that not very good performance. No one is going to win this competition at this rate. Everyone has sucked.

Chris Richardson is our next great hope. He says he's in the restaurant business. Just say you're a waiter and be done. He thinks he looks and sings like Justin. I hope he doesn't if he wants his own career. He is singing “I Don't Want to be Anything Other Than”. He stays on key better than the first few guys, but it's like a boy band member trying to sing rock. Too cute, too high pitched, and yet works better than anyone so far. He is desperately in need of being himself and not mocking other's style. At least he can hold a tune from beginning to end.

Nick Pedro is being cast as the comeback kid this year. He flopped out last year, but made it to 24 this time. He is singing low and husky at first and a bit nervous. He stays on key but you can barely hear him at times. His falsetto toward the end is the best part, but he wobbles off-key after. It was OK in comparison to some of the others, but not the hit of the night. There has been no Wow Factor from anyone up to this point. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. The first hour was one of the most boring ever on an Idol series.

Blake Lewis at least experiments with his hair. Let's hope it's an indication of other talents. If he can't sing, he can at least beatbox. I'm hoping he'll do both. He chooses the song, “Somewhere Only We Know “. He is unusual and more consistent than anyone else so far. He sounds and looks current. It's a strange song that suits him perfectly. I wasn't wowed, but I wasn't disappointed either. I liked him. I really liked him. Good idea to sing instead of beatbox tonight. He proves a point and still has a card in the hole. That puts him light years ahead of everyone else so far.

Sanjaya Malakar misses his sister, but he was the judges' Sophie's Choice. He is singing Stevie Wonder tonight, “Knocks Me Off My Feet”. He has a sweet melodic voice, but he sounds nervous and slow tonight too. It is hard to identify the song at first because it is so slow and powerless. It didn't knock me or anyone else off our feet, more like bored us to sleep. Sorry Sanjaya. Nothing memorable tonight.

The funniest contestant so far is up next. Chris Sligh at least has a sense of humor. He has the best line of the series so far. “I hope to make David Hasselhoff cry”. What better ambition? He can actually sing and seems less afraid than anyone else so far. He is singing “Typical” and sings it more animatedly and with more fun than anyone else tonight. Top twelve for sure. Simon thinks it's like a student's gig, but I think he feels too old to really be a part of Chris's generation. I understand but don't sympathize or agree with him. I think Chris knows his generation better than either of us.

Jared is a handsome one that needs to watch out for Paula. If he can't sing, he can go to acting school or model. He is singing the sexy ballad, “One” for the ladies tonight. I believe he is a lady's man and won't get many votes from the boys if it matters. Paula disses him, but I think it's a cover. Simon says he looks good, too. I'm not sure singing is going to be in his future, but I think we'll see more of him elsewhere.

A.J. Tabaldo is this year's cute Latin boy with boy band ambitions. There is one every year seems like. He is OK, but not great. That should be the theme for tonight. Barely OK, but not great. He stays on key but so what. I've seen better on youtube. I'm glad it's nearly over. I'm bored into tiredness. Let's wrap this trainwreck up fast.

Phil Stacey is the bald guy this year that had a baby during his audition. Have they done that before? They all run together after two hours. Are they saving the best for last. Let's hope. He is singing one of those big building rock ballads of boredom. He doesn't look like an Idol, He looks like Uncle Fenster. Randy loves it. Simon was bored. I'm thinking Phil and everyone else was threatened with bodily harm if they showed any spark tonight.

I've seen Idols, X-factors, Singing Academies, and Rock Stars. They are all the same. You get your ninety seconds and you better make the best of it. You might even slide by once or twice, but sooner or later fate will catch up to you. This group desperately needs to step it up. At the top of the heap is Chris Sligh and Blake Lewis and they are about three feet underground. It's a long, long, long way to the top. My excitement meter is sitting on -3. Better luck tomorrow night.