My List

Indi has a List. I do not have a List.

The 'List' is a group of celebrities that, if presented the opportunity, one would throw themselves at unmercifully. Growing up, I never really had the hots for any celebs. I think plenty of people are attractive, but I guess I'd never been -hit- by a bolt of lightning by anyone. When I learned that Indi had a list, at first I was surprised/apalled because I could not relate, but over time have grown to appreciate it and don't take it as hard line as I first did.

All that to say, only RECENTLY have I opened myself up to the concept of a list, but still haven't found anyone that I felt was truly suitable.

Until now.

Carah Faye Charnow of Shiny Toy Guns is teh hotness~ Only I don't think I should call mine 'The List'. That's taken. Perhaps the book. She's going in the book. Yeah, that'll work.


New Boss, Same as the Old Boss

The week of my birthday, I interviewed at an AT&T Wireless store location for a part time sales position. Today, I was advised that I got the job.

I start on May 7th. I will be going to school full time in the summer and fall and onwards to a degree that I haven't quite decided on.

I will be leaving behind 7 years in the Cingular Call Center. I have many friends there and the next two weeks are going to be a farewell to a way of life that I have enjoyed for some time.

I'm excited. Scared, too. But I am hopeful. And thankful.

Penn Primary

As predicted by the majority of the world, Ms. Clinton won the PA Primary tonight. Whee.

I don't have much to say right now but this: Hillary's speech was, "Thank you for this, I am important." Barack's speech was, "Thank you for this, you are important."

That is all.


Music Review (inspired by Indi)

In homage to Indi's most recent music review, I thought I'd share some recent music experiences of mine. I'd also like to introduce my random arbitrary rating scale...

1 star - Older than McDonald's
2 stars - Glenn Campbell in True Grit
3 stars - RC Cola on Tap
4 stars - Sinclair leaves B5
5 stars - Josh Lyman on the Mary Marsh Show

Daft Punk - Human After All
I came into this album from an interesting angle: I already own and am a big fan of the Alive 2007 album, which is primarily a live version of this record intermixed with their previous efforts. It was cool to be able to hear the songs in their original "studio" version but I know it would've sounded cooler had I heard this first. I enjoy the sound immensely but it has lost some punch in light of the live show. Sinclair leaves B5.

Calvin Harris - I Created Disco
There's a slight twinge of geekdom that is screaming in agony as it is brought to the light...I downloaded this album solely due to a 20 second sound clip of a particular song that has been attached to a YTMND fad as of late. I listened to some snippets and thought it was worth a try. Overall, there are some enjoyable tracks (the one that hooked me, 'Acceptable in the 80s' tends to make me bob my head) but some are too repetitive and it's painfully obvious that the album was headed by a producer. Glenn Campbell in True Grit.

Cut Copy - In Ghost Colours
Now this is more like it! This was the greatest surprise in a long time. I was randomly perusing iTunes and this showed up on the radar. I've listened to this a few times and it's been just as good as the first time. It's this hybrid between Royksopp and Snow Patrol. If the 80's happened today, this is what it would be. Josh Lyman on the Mary Marsh Show!

Gnarls Barkley - The Odd Couple
This was another pleasant surprise. I had heard bits and pieces of the first album and was not impressed. Crazy was overplayed. However, this came recommended from someone so I gave it a shot. I'm very glad that I did. It has a wonderful rolling sound to it. Some tracks are light and fun and others are dark and brooding. It's a great roller coaster ride of not-over-produced music with an amazing vocal performance. Sinclair leaves B5.

Franz Ferdinand - You Could Have It So Much Better
I had a few tracks of this forever mixed in with Franz's previous record but never anything really organized. I've heard most of the tracks before and after a certain period of time it's hard to listen to the songs as a cohesive unit after experiencing them piecemeal for so long. Still, this is enjoyable and Franz brings the same energy that they always bring. On first listen their music sounds very repetitive but if you listen closer you can hear the real thing. RC Cola on Tap.

The Crystal Method - Drive: Nike+ Original Run
I got sucked into this because I don't know much of Crystal Method's catalogue and this is marketed for the exact reason I wanted it. Still haven't listened to the 45-min long mix track all the way through yet but it does do it's job. I want to run/jog/drive fast when I hear it. RC Cola on Tap.

Two Reflections


Skating and other Activities

Indi and I went out on a double date last night with the Joneses. Our first stop was the cajun dining experience of Copeland's at 71st and 129th in Broken Arrow. The blackened chicken there is amazing. Everyone was pretty pleased, I think.

After the meal, we went to the Broken Arrow Roller-Skating rink for some good old-fashioned times! Unfortunately, Nikki took a nasty fall early on and the Joneses had to go. When I returned, though, Indi had been skating for awhile and was having a great time! I got out and skated awhile myself, even though I was frightened of falling and generally had no idea what I was doing. Indi looked like a natural, and she taught me some things.

BTW, she's been doing AWESOME this week at getting some exercise in! She's been walking daily and this morning we went and walked around the reservoir at 21st and 193rd. 2.5 miles around! It was great! Tell her congrats on her blog or somewheres :)

Today has been a good day. I still want a dog, but realize we need a fence first. Our tree is still alive. Grocery Shopping went well. I have discovered that I like the band, "Shiny Toy Guns". And why wouldn't I with a name like that?


good advice

Mars Volta Concert

I attended a concert on Tuesday, one features The Mars Volta (no openers) at the historic Cain's Ballroom. I have let the concert simmer a bit before commenting on it, but feel the time is now right.

First let me say I am glad I went. These cats definitely dance to the beat of a different drummer and there is some true talent there...the drummer is amazing. That being said, I do not believe I will be attending any future concerts.

I am not a big fan of cacophony. You know, like the end bit of 'A Day in the Life'. It just grates on me. Mars Volta thrives on this. The majority of the concert was like one huge jam session and there was a lot of stuff I didn't really care for. The experimental nature of the Volta's sound is tolerable for a short period of time, but they played for two and a half hours. After the first hour I was bored. It all started to sound like the same song.

Everyone else had a good time, though, and rightfully so. They're all big fans. I was on the fence. I can now say, confidently, that I am not a fan. Good luck to ya'll, but it just ain't my cup of tea.


Spider-Man 3: What Happened?

If you've not seen Spider-Man 3, turn back now. Here be spoilers!

I'm a fairly decent fan of comic book movies. I'm cursory familiar with most of the properties that have been optioned for TV and Film and, although I'm not intrinsically comfortable with the particulars of the franchises (save Batman) I know enough. Spider-Man was in and around my peripheral understanding all throughout my childhood and I was very happy to see Sam Raimi take the reigns of the film franchise back at the beginning of the decade. First movie was good, I remember folks saying things like, "This is what a super hero movie should be!" and the general aura of excitement. The company I worked for (Cingular Wireless) had put a lot of support into the movie and it seemed to be everywhere. Some years later, Spidey II hit the screens and I was bowled over again with the great story brought to the screen. Score, directing, acting, all of it was in good order. So, naturally, I was excited to see Spider-Man 3.

I cannot accurately describe the level of my disappointment. From a fan perspective, they got a LOT wrong. Much more than I'm sure I caught as a casual fan. Sure, you expect some changes and liberties to be taken with a film as compared to the roots of the graphic novel, but really? Plus the acting, dialogue, and EVERYTHING else associated with the film was atrocious. Let's run them down:

  1. Opening credit sequence was a video-capture history of the first two movies. Sure Spidey II did a similar thing, but at least it made it look like a comic book. The recap here is lazy and unnecessary.
  2. Peter Parker is unsympathetic from the beginning. From his mannerisms to Hubris Gone Wild it's a wonder I ever liked the character in the first two films. When he starts to "go bad" later I almost welcomed it...before I realized what that meant.
  3. Mary Jane has become the most insecure person on the planet. She is always asking for booster statements and not accepting compliments. Plus, I don't like the way that Kirsten Dunst sings, but that's a personal gripe.
  4. The symbiote just so HAPPENS to land mere feet from Parker's moped via meteorite and attaches to his bike. How convenient! It then tucks itself into a drawer for the first and second acts.
  5. The Sandman stumbles through his scenes and is set up early on with a backstory (daughter with unknown illness) that assures that Spider-Man won't be able to kill him, regardless of what bad things he does. Also, his method of transmogrification is ridiculous. Particle accellerator in the middle of a field, at 2:00 AM, and the scientists don't notice there's a guy in the unprotected area. Whatever.
  6. Gwen Stacy, her father, and even Eddie Brock are completely and totally wasted. I don't want to get into the relationship triangle attempt this movie made, but I was totally uninterested.
  7. Amnesia? Really? REALLY?! Any movie that uses amnesia to get rid of a bad guy for awhile really needs to go all the way back to the drawing board.
  8. The whole 'Parker Goes Bad!" segment...terrible. Evidently, cosmic symbiotes cause you to turn emo, strut everywhere, and be ridiculous. Not to mention cause you to break out in random dance numbers in a jazz club.
  9. Venom. He shows up for like ten minutes and goes down like a sack of potatoes.
  10. All is forgiven at the end, la-de-dah, and Spidey let's the Sandman go. Not to mention that mid-way through the movie, it's revealed that HE is the one that killed Uncle Ben, not the other guy, but since it ended up being an accidental killing Peter forgives him...and Sandman just flies away. Cause, y'know, sand does that.
  11. THE BUTLER! ZOMG! "Oh, by the way, this whole vengeance thing you've been on that has caused you to damage the house, disfigure your face, and alienate all your friends...your father wasn't killed by Spider-Man, it was his own glider. I'm the butler, I know these things and kept it to myself until just now...20 minutes before the movie is over. Cheers!" I almost walked out of the theater at that moment.
We watched it with Rifftrax goodness last night. It gets worse on repeat viewings. Poor dialogue, terrible pacing, hammy acting...what the heck happened? The other two were so good!

C'mon, Dark Knight. Make it all better!


That's Right!

On the recommendation of my good friend Mark, I rented 'There Will Be Blood' on Wednesday. Watched it and loved it...but understand that it isn't a movie for everyone.

Daniel Day-Lewis plays an oilman (you'll agree) around the turn of the century. It follows him as he starts his career and ends at the twilight of his life. The primary part of the story has him in a small California town pitted against the local preacher, a holier-than-thou (ha) faith healer played by Paul Dano. What a fantastic film.

My favorite film of '07 is still No Country for Old Men but this is right up there. This movie falls into what I call the 'American Epic' category. Movies like The Searchers and The Godfather...detailed, realistic, deliberate. The score is also fantastic: Jonny Greenwood (of Radiohead) performs some amazing feats with traditional period instruments that really put you on edge. The first time I watched the movie, I wasn't sure, but the second time it was perfect. I now own the soundtrack, in fact! ^-^

And boy, how perfect was Day-Lewis? His character of Daniel Plainview is pitch perfect. From the first fifteen minutes of NO speech to the infamous milkshake line he skirts the line of overbearing and comes across very similar to Javier Bardem's character in No Country: Not a nice guy, but very loyal to his own personal code. He just chews up scenery. Great acting all around, actually; children and all.

So, yes, heartily recommended.


Casio: The Return

On Thursday, January 5th of 2006 my wonderful Casio NF-11 watch broke. I had replaced the strap three times (battery twice) in its 10+ years of service but the watch itself had broken and would no longer fit a pin for the wrist strap. With a heavy heart, I placed it in a drawer and sought out a new timepiece.

I wanted the same functionality, but I had a hard time finding a simple watch that told me the time, day, and date. I settled for a nice Fossil watch and moved on. Yesterday, I finally told myself I'd had enough. The watch I purchased was nice, sure, but it was hard to read. It was TOO dark and the light was dim at best. I decided to try to find a suitable replacement for my old watch.

Behold. The Fossil mistake cost me $75(!) but the Casio cost me $16. All Hail the Return of the Magnificent Casio! (The old face is in the background on the mousepad...still ticking away.)


Filling the Well

My good friend Tony is amazing with analogies. He helps me out in times of trouble.

Recently I've been having problems with my faith. I've been unable to defend positions and answer questions in a meaningful way and have realized that I fell off the Christian horse a long time ago. Not on purpose, per se, but gradually. Casually.

After being unable to properly express my religious beliefs I was angry at myself, at God. I was talking to Tony about my crossroads and he asked if I'd ever been dehydrated. If one is dehydrated and is sitting inside in the A/C you don't tend to notice it. If you go out and work in the yard, you break down real quick. I've been spending a lot of my spiritual time lately inside in the A/C and when someone wants me to come out and play I fall on my face. I originally took this as a sign that perhaps my faith was misdirected but I cannot fault God for my shortcomings. I cannot expect a good defense when I haven't been tending it. You can't draw water from an empty well.

If I get back into a strong relationship with God and still feel this way, then that's something else entirely. But it's not fair to give up on Him because I haven't communicated and expect to be just as good.

He's not far away. He has not moved. And, really, neither have I. He is standing right next to me. All I have to do is look over and He is there.