Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Surprise!

In case I didn't mention it (not sure if I did), my sister and I own a condo here in L.A. (hence, the HOA thing). Well, our parents showed up on our doorstep on Sunday, unannounced. It was a fantastic surprise.

I'm mostly looking forward to my dad assisting with getting the heat fixed (it was 40 degrees last night -- brrr!)

In case it isn't obvious, there may not be much activity this week, due to the holiday. I'm going to try to stay active until Wednesday night, but we'll see. You can always catch up with me later. I understand.

Friday, November 19, 2004

I am now the president

...of our Homeowners Association.

What have I done?

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Excuses

Work has been really busy lately. And we still don't have heat in our condo after 3 weeks. More electricians should be coming soon.

Sorry I haven't been able to update more. I'll try to get back to a normal schedule in a week.

Until then, check out some of the other blogs on my blogroll. They are all there because they are some of the best bloggers in the world.

Of course, don't take my word for it...

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Blogging vacation

I won't be blogging much the rest of the week, as I am getting Lasik surgery today and I will be restricted in even USING a computer for the next couple of days!

I'm looking forward to seeing the world without glasses for the first time in 22 years...

There will be lots to discuss when I return. The work is not done.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Socks in the news

No, not the Boston Red Sox, but rather socks. Like, what you wear on your feet. Think I'm kidding? Read this.

Signaling that it plans to get tough with China, the Bush administration said Friday that it would curb imports of socks from that Asian nation because they posed a "significant" threat to the U.S. sock industry.

James Jochum, assistant secretary of commerce, said a 4,200% surge in imports from China of wool, synthetic-fiber and cotton socks over the last three years threatened U.S. makers, contributing to a 15% decrease in their production and employment. Over that time, the average wholesale price of Chinese-made socks dropped by more than half to $5.11 from $11.54, he said.

"This administration, when it is presented with a strong factual case, will not hesitate to enforce our trade laws," Jochum said.

Do not mess with the U.S. sock industry!!

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Thursday, October 14, 2004

...and we all breathed freely again.

My sister got a new job (did I mention she left the last one a month ago?) and I am now much relieved.

Back to normal life.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Superman Dead?

Drudge Report breaks news that Christopher Reeve has died suddenly today. If the report is true, the family will make a statement on Monday. I certainly hope it is not true, but I am sure that if it is, Reeve walks in heaven, once more.

Everyone will mention Superman and Somewhere in Time as his most well known performances. I personally loved him in The Remains of the Day. Not a huge role for him, but he is wonderful in the film (which is rather timely, now that I think about it) playing a Senator who goes to England and tries to convince British aristocracy that they should not follow the appeasement of Neville Chamberlain, but rather stay vigilant of Hitler and beware his motives.

I will continue to hope against hope that this report is untrue, though I note sadly that it is unlikely Drudge would break the news if it wasn't...

Saturday, October 09, 2004

My home town makes the L.A. Times

Wow. My hometown of Morton, Illinois is written up in the Los Angeles Times. I'm too stunned to comment. Here's the link.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Monthly Movie Report

So, as with last month, here is the latest in Hollywood's potential remake/sequel deals. Remember, there is no idea out there that isn't worth remaking!


  • Highlander - Believe it or not, they are going to make an animated version. But 'there can be only one!'
  • Hawaill Five-O - Yes, no TV series escapes the movie machine either!
  • Ikiru - Yes, I know The Magnificent Seven was a good remake of The Seven Samurai, but really, why remake Kurosawa? And with Tom Hanks??
  • Sabrina, the Teenage Witch - No comment.
  • Revenge of the Nerds - But will Anthony Edwards be in it?
  • Alvin and the Chipmunks - Worse, it is live action and animation.
  • Mission Impossible 3 - This was already in the works, at least J.J. Abrams will write and direct. It might actually be good.
  • Terminator 4 - No word on whether Arnold will be in it, but can't you just see him saying, "Hasta la vista, I have a budget meeting, baby."
  • Pet Sematary - Hey, zombies are in, maybe dead animals will be cool too?
  • Hairspray - The movie that became a musical that will become a movie. My head hurts.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Definitely not going to Mt. St. Helens

They say it won't be a major eruption. Still, increased lava flow is not a sign of dormancy, me thinks.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

I won't be visiting here anytime soon.

If the current activity strengthens, Mt. St. Helens could blow its top

"Many women exaggerate their stories"

You expect that kind of lame argument from, say, Kobe Bryant's defense team, but no, now we get it from the Sudanese government regarding women raped in Darfur. Needless to say, the U.N. thinks "there is a serious gap or disconnect between the perception of the reality on the ground by the government and the perception of that reality by everybody else." This may become a nominee for "Understatement of the Year".

Newsflash! Boys different than girls!!

Just in case you didn't get that lesson in your junior high health class. The Journal of the American Medical Association makes it official: boys and girls are different.

Why do we spend millions of dollars to learn the obvious?

Hurricane Jeanne

I've always hated the name Jeanne. Now I'm at work, at 2 A.M. covering for our Orlando crew as they try to brave through yet another hurricane. At least my sleep deprivation counts for something.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

The Job Hunt

My sister left her job last week. Mutual decision. So, she's back to polishing the resume and working her network of contacts to find a new position.

She's a pretty strong gal, so it always takes me by surprise when she shows any vulnerability or weakness. Still, the tears over this stressful life change were short-lived and she is back in action.

Makes me proud. Reminds me that my parents did well raising us. I thank them a thousand times over for being such wonderful parents. They don't read my blog, but I don't really need them to see that. They know we appreciate them every day.

Give someone you love a hug today. Remind them that they are precious. When the world is chaotic as it so often is, it is good to remember the ones close to us that keep the chaos at bay.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Frances

I've always hated the name Frances. Hurricane Frances is headed right for Central Florida and it is now threatening my weekend plans. Though I live and work in SoCal, my company has a primary site in Orlando, which we had to do disaster recovery for when Charley rolled through. If Frances stays on course, we'll have to repeat our performance, supporting Orlando again through the storm. Of course, it is a holiday weekend and I have plans to be in Las Vegas until Saturday evening. I could end up working the graveyard shift again as soon as I get home.

Frances. Pfft.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Hero with Jet Li, not the Dustin Hoffman movie

So, I promised a review on Friday. If you followed my advice (which, since no one is reading this blog yet, is highly unlikely) you saw a really beautiful film. Chris Doyle, the Director of Photography is unbelievable, and most of his other recent films have not been epics like this but smaller films. In any case, I plan to seek out his other work to view it. But back to Hero...

I expected the wire fu and the beautifully choreographed fight scenes. I even expected some mystical aspects. What I didn't expect was the message and how it would make me think about the film after I saw it. The artistry on the screen stays with you, but the message sticks in your head. To summarize the film: Jet Li plays a warrior who is summoned by the Emperor to tell how he has supposedly killed three assassins who threatened the Emperor. Jet Li appears and tells his tale, but the Emperor doesn't believe his story. The stories are told in flashbacks with alternate stories presented.

The "message" of the film I keep referring to is difficult to discuss without spoiling the film, but I'll try. One character in the film says that the Emperor must not be killed because though he is a murdering tyrant he is working for the greater good of uniting the warring factions of China (which 2000 years ago was not a single united country but 8 provinces with their own warlords). The question raised here is, do the ends justify the means? Is this character right? And not only that, if looked through the lens of the Chinese government today, is it mere propaganda to support a Communist paradigm (the whole is greater than the one)?

I'll admit, I just woke up about 20 minutes ago, so I'm not in full pontificating mode yet. When I am (and after I've done some reading on China), I'll be back to ponder more.

In any case, go see Hero. If for no other reason, so you can help me sort all of this out...

Friday, August 27, 2004

Remake report

Here are the notable films being remade by Hollywood. As I always say, no previously made film escapes the recycle bin...

First up, is The Bad Seed. No writer as of yet and no cast. Still, I lay odds this one will get made. Horror films are cheap and they make good money.

Second, and reported more widely is a remake of the 1977 film Oh, God! with Ellen DeGeneres to star as God (in a role previously filled by George Burns). Again, with a star attached, very likely to be made.

The Munsters is being revived by the Wayans Bros. God (or Ellen DeGeneres) help us.

Vanishing Point, a remake of the 1971 film about a man who bets he can drive cross-country in 15 hours. I'll have to investigate the previously made film to determine if this is worthy of a remake or if it is likely. Tony Scott's production company has the rights so I'd say it is 50/50 right now.

Bang the Drum Slowly -- The 70's are providing lots of remake material this week. The original was released in 1973 about the relationship between a pitcher and a catcher, as one of them is diagnosed with cancer. This needs a remake?

Finally, on a related note, The Untouchables may be getting a prequel, focusing on Capone's rise to power in Chicago. No word on casting.

Your weekly move recommendation

Since my second web career is as a Film Critic, I recommend you see the film Hero being released this weekend. I'll post a review after I see it tomorrow.

Would you run into a burning bus to save Pluto?

Disney bus catches fire. The good news: the bus driver did a great job getting everyone off the bus, so no injuries. Shut down the Beeline though, which could not have been fun for commuters.

Flying Cars!!

Yes!! At long last, the answer to my constant questions "where the flip is my flying car already??" It is linked from Drudge so expect delays.

UPDATE: Here's a new link for the Flying Car story. I'm 25 years from my flying car. Somebody should be looking into funding for that rather than on sugar cane growing subsidies. After all, I don't need more sugar in my diet, but I do need a flying car!

Monday, July 26, 2004

Time to Shout

My sister and I run a blog (rather poorly, I'll add) over at www.sistercritics.com.  Still, I felt I needed my own, personal blog.  Don't know what I'll discuss yet.  I'll probably start out collecting links and just ranting in general.  We'll see...