7:59 pm: Everyone is present and accounted for; the dog is snuggling into a spot which she will be kicked out of any moment now; the newly purchased Red Vines from Costco are on the coffee table and ready to be eaten (although I don't think we can make it through all 330 pieces tonight). OOPS...almost forgot..I need to grab a Diet Coke.
8:00 pm: OK, this is already over the top; the Rocky theme song is being played and some boxing announcer is going, "Let's get ready to ruuuuummmmmmbbbblllle." OH NO! OH NO! David Cook and David Archuletta are dressed in boxing garb.
8:03 pm: Ryan Seacrest shaved for tonight...that's nice. If David Cook doesn't win this, it's a sham!
8:04 pm: Now they have Jim Lampley (a boxing analyst) talking about the match-up between Cook and Archuletta. Now I would definitely be more interested in this if it were a boxing match. I think Cook could take little David.
8:06 pm: People make fun of sporting events that act as if it's the end of the world. What about this? Some archaic 80 year old music producer is now acting as if the fate of the world is resting on this singing competition. Mem muses, "I think Paula might be wearing a wig."
8:10 pm: A quick check of ESPN (where else would the person with the remote in his hand go?) shows that the Celtics beat the Pistons tonight. Not good! Not that I'm a Pistons fan. It's just that I'm a fan of whoever is playing the Celtics. Best-case scenario, though: Lakers beat the Spurs and then destroy the Celtics in the finals.
8:13 pm: It's worship Clive Davis time (he's the archaic 80 year old I referred to earlier). Looks like Cook is going to start with an U2 song (perfect for huuuuuge U2 fan and deacon-extraordinaire, C-Lo).
8:14 pm: Cook is up with "I Just Haven't Found What I'm Looking For." He's putting some of his own spin on it...nice. He oozes star quality, especially compared to Archuletta. High marks from the judges, concluding with Simon calling it "phenomenal."
8:18 pm: Archuletta is up next with the title track from "Lion King." Just kidding! It's actually "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me." ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ Any moment now they'll show his overbearing father wearing a hat. Yep, there he is in a turf-cutter. Here's the question: Would I have Cook's song on my iPod? YES. Would I have Archuletta's? NOT IN A MILLION YEARS! Randy likes it. Archuletta looks like someone just stole his cookies and he's going to cry. Simon thinks round 1 goes to Archuletta.
8:23 pm: Preview for Beverly Hill Chihuahua, which our youngest definitely wants to see. Probably a renter when it comes out in DVD. Hey...it's President Palmer. Sorry, President, you're not an insurance guy...you're the President. If you don't know what I'm talking about, you need to go to Blockbuster and rent season 1 of "24." You'll spend the next 4 or 5 nights watching several episodes each night and then you'll be hooked.
8:27 pm: It's new song contestant choice. More Jim Lampley using boxing terminology and more of the dude from Phantom of the Opera. What's his name again? I've got a brain cramp. Ah yes...Andrew Lloyd Webber.
8:28 pm: Cook's up with "Dream Big." Sounds like a song for Rocky XX, when Rocky, as a 95 year old, travels to Korea to fight some 25 year old heavyweight trained under a communist regime.
8:32 pm: Now there's a quality commercial for a quality product: Diet Coke!!
8:33 pm: Preview for "Journey to the Center of the Earth." It's going to be in 3D in some theaters. We're DEFINITELY going to that!! Comes out July 11th.
8:36 pm: Here comes Archuletta's 2nd song: "In This Moment." In this moment, I can hardly wait for this to be over. I think I'll grab my 10th red vine. For the 98th straight episode of AI, someone says, "You could sing the phone book and it would sound great." For just once, I'd like to hear someone sing the phone book. Round 2, according to Simon, goes to the son of the overbearing father.
8:40 pm: Prediction from my wife: Archuletta will win and they will set a minimum age requirement of 18 years old. Prediction from me: I will never have an Archuletta song on my iPod.
8:41 pm: The mute button has been pressed to silence the sound of the super-loud commercials.
8:42 pm: News preview for supergluing a beak back on an eagle. Interesting.
8:45 pm: Round 3; more Lampley and more Lloyd-Webber; Cook is up first with "The World I Know." Never heard it. Of course, that doesn't mean much. Again, the litmus test for me is "Would I have this on my iPod?" The answer for this song is, "No." Cook needed a bigger performance than this to overcome the son of the overbearing father. Unless Archuletta forgets all the words to "Imagine" or takes all his clothes off and exposes his Mormon underwear, I think Archuletta is the next American Idol.
8:51 pm: Son of the overbearing father is up next...AFTER THE BREAK!!
8:54 pm: Archuletta singing Lenin's blasphemous "Imagine" (changing some of the words). Sorry, Archie, but all your songs sound the same. Within the next 2 or 3 years, he'll be singing the title track for a Disney or Dreamworks movie. You heard it here first. Please don't cry...please don't cry...please don't cry. Sticking with the boxing theme, Simon says that we've just witnessed a "knockout."
Overall, I don't think it was that great of a finale. Certainly not the same as Taylor Hicks singing Stevie Wonder in a purple velvet jacket!
Well, that does it for the finale. Tomorrow night...they'll take the 1 minute that it takes to crown the champion and shove it into 120 minutes. Clive is not moving. Reuben Studdard closes the show.