Tuesday, October 28

Up next: Supernova

I am going to watch Supernova as soon as I have a spare second. I added it to my Q after reading that there is a tasteful sex scene in a zero gravity chamber.

Somehow I doubt that any sexual intercourse that takes place in any type of chamber in space is tasteful. Which makes me hopeful that the rest of the movie will be equally ridiculous. I'm guessing that this is something like Aliens meets The Core with a 1/4 of the budget. Awesome.

Monday, October 27

And I thought Christian Bale only used the sexy gruff voice as Batman

Reign of Fire definitely makes the cut. Disaster, carnage, and A-listers in it for the cash. Although, to be fair I think both Christian Bale and Matthew McConaughey went into this thinking it was going to be high quality sci-fi. I'm not sure how they got this impression after reading a script that invovles dragons coming out from underneath the earth and burning the world to ash..but hey, I'm a fan. I also like that it's set in Britian since I'm a sucker for cute accents. I also really appreciate that there aren't too many Scots involved thus far..cute sounding, but totally unintelligable (to me!).

Anyway, the great thing about Reign of Fire (so far) is that they put a lot of money into this movie. The dragons look pretty good and they've kept the up close shots to a minimum. Also, there doesn't seem to be any stock footage of kimono dragons or crocodiles superimposed..so that's always a good sign. Unfortunantely, Mathew McConaughey has the worst haircut I have ever seen. Actually, I'm not sure I'd call bald with a gross beard a haircut, but I'm not a fan. I am also not a fan of Mathew's tactics or his attempt at the gruff sexy voice. Christian Bale does it way better..and he is still kind of sexy even with the dirt and bad hair.

Also, wouldn't it make more sense to have short hair? What with all the flames shooting everywhere, wouldn't you want less flammable material attached to your body?

So, here are some things I have learned:

1. Dragons exist, they eat ash and are all female. Except for one 'stud' dragon who impregnates the rest. Apparently, dragons can exist but they can't reproduce asexually or something more interesting. Still need a male to get things done..

2. Americans are still rude, pushy and totally unwilling to negotiate in 2020. Great. So proud.

3. Being the best friend of the hero is a recipe for disaster. The hero has to survive..but how can he be tortured & (extra) melancholy if you don't die horribly at some point before the end? Sorry Gerard Butler. That's what you get for being the bf.

4. Dragons know the rules! A few teenagers get eaten (they're fair game anyway)..but all the little kids survive. Thanks for playing fair.

5. Dragons are not like serial killers. It was hard to take down the big scary male dragon..but once down, there was no popping back up for one last kill or flash of fire. Hm. Maybe the movie would have been better if the dragon ate Matthew M after it was already down on the ground. Then maybe I would have cared a little more.

Thursday, October 23

Nie Dialogues

I read a few blogs pretty regularly, mostly about cooking. Actually, they're all about cooking which is kind of funny since my blog rarely includes recipes. Anyway, a few weeks ago one of my regular reads included a link to a recovery blog for a a young husband and wife who had been badly burned in a plane crash. I don't usually bother to follow links, but the story sounded really sad and I wanted to see how they were doing. I won't give you all the details (you can find them here), but it's a very sad story with not much of a happy ending in site.

Now I find myself checking the Nie recovery blog pretty regularly. I've even gone back to Nie's (Stephanie) original blog and read a lot of her archived posts. I love reading her blog..even though I have almost nothing in common with Stephanie. She's only a few years older than I am, but she's Mormon, married, and the mother of four young children. She's head over heels in love with her husband, and several of her posts reference how she likes to make him take his shirt off while he works so she can watch. I may occasionally cringe at her approach to feminism and family (she's teaching her girls to suffer for fashion), but I have found myself reading old posts well into the night because it's fun to see how much this totally stunning woman loves her life and family.

Now Stephanie has burns over 80% of her body and is fighting for her life. She'll probably never look the same and both she and Mr. Nielson have years of surgery, pain and medical bills in their future. While all of this is sad..it's not something I would usually blog about. I decided to write a post,however, after reading some of the comments people left on other blogs and new articles about the fundraisers and money going towards the family. Several people had to the gall to write that people should not bother to send money because they are Mormon and Mormons are all rich. Other people wrote that it was silly to help this couple because they clearly have insurance, or because were hurt while in a private plane, and anyone in a private plan has enough money for medical bills. When I read these comments I wanted to cry. I'm sure Stephanie and Christian have insurance, and it looks as though they're comfortable if not well off. I doubt, however, that they just happened to save the $5 million or so dollars they are likely to need (according to the NY times article) during the next few years after their insurance stops paying for additional surgeries and therapy.

But that's not really the point. Does it really matter that they have insurance? Or that they are Mormon and might or might not have families with money? Of course there are people out there without insurance who need our help. Many of them are not young or beautiful. That does not make it wrong to want to help this family, or any less meaningful. Somehow I doubt that all the people who wrote horrible things about the Nielsens are out their helping those they feel are more deserving of their time and energy. It makes me sad that there are people in this country who see this kind of tragedy and take the time to shame others for offering their support. I guess I shouldn't be surprised..these are probably the same people who think Obama is a terrorist and that the Jews are actually trying to rule the world.

I'm pretty sure Stephanie would be scandalized by my liberal politics and work experience. Heck, she might even want to pray for my soul since I'm a non-believer (in Jesus)..but I'm going to send her a note and donate to her recovery fund anyway. I think she would do the same for someone she read about, because I think she would be equally ashamed that so many people would take time out of their day to be hurtful instead of acknowledging someone else's suffering as worth their time.

Saturday, October 18

Descent was too yicky! And yes, that's the technical term..

I tried watching The Descent. It was too scary. I like my disaster movies kind of like my men, big, fast and kind of dumb. Ok, kidding about the men part, but serious about the movie part. I don't like disaster or animal attack movies that are gory. I know this seems totally at odds with my love of high body counts, but I prefer either totally tacky (Piranha comes to mind) or large-scale (Poseidon). Sometimes I can put up with scary music and dripping blood, but only in the interest of really getting breadth and depth in my disaster movie watching. Exaple: Alien. Lots of blood and gross things popping out of chests. I endured and even enjoyed because it is a classic. The Descent was really more like a horror movie that happened to include creatures. Yick.

Friday, October 17

Crocodile carnage!

I'm swamped with work and should not be blogging, but I couldn't resist writing down a few thoughts after watching Lake Placid again recently. What can I say, I'm a sucker for crocodile carnage.

I've seen this movie a few times now and it only gets funnier each time.
So here is the things I have learned from Lake Placid:

1. Having at least one current/former A-list actor is key to a truly awesome movie. LP's A lister? Bill Pullman! How he went from being the strong yet sensitive president who saves the world (Independence Day..obviously) to killing a crocodile with Z* listers is beyond me. But I appreciate his willingness to make a crap movie for my enjoyment. He's pretty much the only one who can act**, and it makes the movie JUST believable enough to be really fun.

2. Old ladies get the best lines. I was amused by Cloris Leachman in LP2, but Betty White totally takes the cake as her deranged sister in the first installment. I love her deadpan reaction to everything and her total hatred of all of the people who want to kill her pet crocodile. She swears like a sailor and looks totally calm and collected while spewing vitriol and hate. Way better than the over the top performance turned in by Cloris..

3. "Oh shit" is the best expletive you can think of when your love interest is about to get eaten by a huge 30 foot crocodile. Really Bill? That's the best you could do?

4. Paleontologists who hate nature also have secret crocodile hunting skills. It's must be all the practice they get staring at dusty bone fragments. Toughens them right up!

Oh, and Crocodiles are like serial killers (see previous post). Thank you LP for following the rules.

*Sorry Oliver Platt. I know you're famous..but you are a Z lister because everybody recognizes your face and nobody knows your name. I had to IMDB you just to figure out why you looked so darn familiar.

**Sorry again Oliver. You were good too. Bill was just better, and cuter, and he gets the girl. Sorry.

Thursday, October 9

Yeah I'm entitled.. so what? Wanna leave me a note?

The last few weeks I have been thinking a lot about the word entitlement. I'm pretty sure it started when my roommates and I came back to our apartment after a long day of school/work and found a note taped to our door. It said something like:

"Please get your SHIT out of the hallway. Despite what you may be used to, nobody HERE is going to pick it up for you" (original emphasis).

I was annoyed by this note for several reasons. First of all, whoever left the note on our door used packing tape. When we tried to pull it off, it yanked off a large swatch of paint. Anyone who has ever had a landlord knows that if something has to be repainted, it is going to cost you money (good-bye security deposit). So that was annoying. Second, the 'shit' in the hallway was a lot of empty moving boxes. Unfortunately, we live right near an elevator and these were not our moving boxes- we were just the convenient dumping area. All three of us had moved in almost a month ago and were good little tenants and either broke our boxes down for recycling or saved them in the closets. And lastly, I was unbelievably aggravated by the assumption that we would be so rude as to leave lots of cardboard stacked in a public area. If we were new and confused about the rules of the building, why wouldn't you leave a nice note explaining that the maintenance guy Brian would not clean move-in related items? Or, maybe we had all come down with the flu right after moving in. Why assume that we were entitled brats who were refusing to move our garbage?

I was reminded of this story today after my friend A shared a similar rude-note situation. She double parked her car in the garage at school yesterday, and came back to find a note taped to her window. Apparently someone was very offended that she dared to take up two parking spots and wanted her to know that "just because [she] went to Princeton does not mean [she] can take up two spaces." While I have to applaud this note-leaver for their lack of profanity.. I think this kind of behavior is totally unwarranted. Why would you ever look at a double-parked car, look at where someone went to school and assume they are acting out of a sense of entitlement? It's not like A had a sign on her car that said "I'm rich, snobby and Ivy educated. I feel like taking up two spots." Anyone who knows A actually knows that she is not rich, is not snobby and is Ivy educated because she's damn smart and got a scholarship. She also had to double-park her car because she's in a wheelchair and there were not any more handicap spots available. She literally can't get out of her car and into her chair without a little clearance. I'm sure whoever left the note would be mortified if they realized this.. but they would be embarassed for the wrong reasons. They would be thinking about how they were rude to someone in a wheelchair, and totally miss the fact that they were simply rude to another person becaues of their own assumptions about class education and entitlement.

I know that I'm entitled. My parents are lawyers, I had enough money growing up for well beyond the essentials, and I recognize that being white has afforded me chances I don't deserve more than any other person. But I am also cognizant of all of these things and do my best to be self-aware. So next time I have to leave a note on someone's car or door.. it's going to say something nice.

Tuesday, October 7

Everything I learned, I learned from a petty officer

Oh John McCain. The economy is failing, women's rights are slowly being eroded, the US has the highest rates of teenage pregnancy in the industrialized world, and we are losing a war we never should have entered...and your words of wisdom?

"Everything I learned, I learned from a petty officer."

I kind of wish that you had learned everything from a wise family matriarch, or from the people you are supposed to represent.

Monday, October 6

Grad school is interefering with my blogging..

I have been a bad blogger lately..but I am going to try and watch at least 1 of my new DVDs this week or weekend. Next up:

The Descent

Thursday, October 2

VP Debate

By far the best moment of the debate..when Sarah Palin criticized other countries for having policies that hurt women. Alanis Morisette is now playing on repeat in my head.

2nd favorite moment? When Sarah Palin said average six-pack joe on national television. Apparently most Americans are alcoholics.

3rd favorite moment? Joe Biden definitely said Boskians. Oops.

Wednesday, October 1

Inspired by Omnivore's D!

"Here's a chance for a little interactivity for all the bloggers out there. Below is a list of 100 things that I think every good omnivore should have tried at least once in their life. The list includes fine food, strange food, everyday food and even some pretty bad food - but a good omnivore should really try it all. Don't worry if you haven't, mind you; neither have I, though I'll be sure to work on it. Don't worry if you don't recognize everything in the hundred, either; Wikipedia has the answers.

Here's what I want you to do:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you've eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results."

The VGT Omnivore's Hundred:

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding (I'd try to stomach a bite, but I don't know that I could do it…)
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat's milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald's Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S'mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs' legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolat
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

At this point I refuse to cross out any foods. Mostly because I need to look up a few items and figure out if I have actually ingested them, and if not, if I will in the future. As soon as I figure it out, I'll be sure to post an updated list.