Friday, February 26, 2010

Miracleman and other comics

You know, I was actually working on a book a few minutes ago, but I had to take a quick break to alert you to this:

http://ifanboy.com/podcasts/video/iFanboy_-_Episode__129_-_Miracleman

This is a video podcast about Miracleman. My most favoritest comic book character ever. He’s a cheap rip off of Captain Marvel (who the general public will know as Shazam) who is a cheap rip off of Superman.

But Alan Moore and his artists took the material to someplace deep, philosophical, brutal, fierce, and magical. They took a completely stupid concept and Alan Moore ran with it. He made it into something logical, believable, and it took your breath away. A host of artists worked on it, some better than others, but in general, the art was a labor of love for these guys and it showed.

Because of rights disputes to who owned the character, the issues stopped at 24. The next issue is actually all written and drawn but not colored yet. The creator is fighting for his right to publish it but it’s been tied up in courts for years as to who actually owns the right to publish Miracleman stories.

At one point, since my book was no longer in print, it became a rare book and sold for over a hundred dollars on Ebay and Amazon. Miracleman is having the same type of value boom. The guys at iFanboy call it “the greatest work in comics that you have never read.”

Because I’m old, I’ve read it. I have the entire series, which lists on Ebay for $599.99. I have five copies of issue number one. Why? Well, I bought one. Then a friend gave me his collection and there was one in there. Then one day I was looking through the dollar bin and found three more. I bought all three. Not because I thought they would ever be worth anything, but because I loved them. No one realized how great they were until little known Alan Moore started getting attention and people thought “OMG, I have to have everything this guy has ever written!”

I guess I might as well continue about comics for a few minutes and make this an actual blog post for comic fans.

Will there ever be a more Golden age for comics than the 80's? The Dark Pheonix Saga, Nexus, Badger, Miracleman, Superman at his best, Hulk by Peter David, art and some stories by John Byrne before his lost his goddamn mind, Sandman, Secret Wars, Alan Moore's Swamp Thing, Watchmen, Frank Miller's Daredevil, The Dark Knight and more! OMG it was the best of times for comic fans. I dare anyone to tell me a better decade for comics.

Irredeemable- Concept: What if Superman turned evil one day? And killed ten million people out of built up frustration with the human race. It’s an interesting concept because you would need the combined might of all the super villains and all the super-heroes combined in order to take down Superman. Flash, Batman, Green Arrow, Captain Marvel, Martian Manhunter, Green Lantern, everyone. One of the greatest weaknesses Superman has is his friends. I remember one fantastic scene Brainiac came up with where he captures Jimmy Olson, Lois Lane and Perry White and put them in a box, with oxygen, deep under the sea. I remember Superman coming to save them and Brainiac saying “Wait! Think! If you let in the water, they will be crushed by the immense pressure. If you try to take them to the top too fast they’ll get severe bends and die.”

Of course, if Superman doesn’t care about his friends anymore, and in fact starts killing them, what do you do?

The story is interesting, and I like where Waid is going with the back-story and the ramifications of having a super villain so powerful and so ruthless, but I disagree with his choice to have a villain and a superhero show up in later issues that are as powerful as The Plutonian (This story’s Superman.) I’d much rather see fifteen heroes gang up and try to take down The Plutonian through powers and guile.

The latest issue is powerful because The Plutonian visits his first foster family. They returned him to the foster home one day and then moved and never spoke out loud again for the next twenty years for fear that he would hear them. They have been writing everything to each other for decades. The reason why they returned him to foster care is heartbreaking.

The Walking Dead – Concept: If someone dies, they become a zombie. The more people die, the more zombies there are. In about two years civilization has collapsed and 90% of the population is zombies. No one knows why but the author hints that there is a reason and a possible cure. Follow Rick and his band of survivors across America looking for food, sanctuary, a safe place to rest, and possibly other survivors that still hold some shred of decency in an insane world.

This series reminds me of the book “A Song of Ice and Fire” in the sense that the author (Robert Kirkman) isn’t afraid to kill off anyone. Have you been with the story for fifty issues? Are you married to the main character? You are The Hero’s best friend? Even you’re not safe! No one is safe! You could be killed off this issue!

The story has been well-plotted for sixty issues, the dialogue clever and realistic, the situations ever changing and each issue leaves you slavering for the next one.

Red Hulk – Concept: There’s a new Hulk and he’s red. He punches The Watcher. Can you please just go away Jeff Loeb? Awful.

Superman- Concept: I have no idea! It’s just crazy-town! There’s the Legion of Super Heroes from the future, New Krypton, no Superman, two or three Superboys, The Guardian and Mon-el. I have no idea what’s going on.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Fake Facebook Email

WARNING: There is a fake Facebook email going around that will look like it came from a friend, profile picture and everything. It directs you to a link that looks like a Facebook page with the addition of "crymyway.net" IMMEDIATLY DELETE THIS EMAIL. If you click the link it will ask you to sign into Facebook again to see the link and this is a scam to steal your username and password.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Time Traveler's Wife Movie Review

Gratuitous Wendy Photo






Warning – Major spoilers.


The Time Traveler’s Wife is one of my favorite novels of all time, and being the voracious reader I am, that’s high praise.

Wendy pointed out that maybe that is because I identify so much with Henry. We have a lot of similarities.

1. We need to run or we die.
2. Drinking releases anxiety.
3. When too much anxiety happens, we disappear.
4. Women love us. (I’m sorry but it’s true. :-)
5. Other stuff I don’t feel like going into.

The movie didn’t get very good reviews but, I had to see it. I kept some twitter like notes while I watched it which I will now clean up and add to.

I should preface a few things. If you are going to do a movie adaption of any work of fiction, you can change things, but some things need to remain true to the original source. Let’s take Batman for instance. He has some things that everyone knows about him, and while you might change his origins, history, or abilities, there are some things you CANNOT change.

1. He doesn’t and won’t wield a gun.
2. He has to have a cape.
3. He has to work at night and be scary to criminals.
4. He doesn’t have any super-powers. No super strength, no flying, no invulnerability, no heat vision.
5. He has a Batmobile.
6. He throws Batarangs, not clubs, not bullets, not bowling pins.

These are things you know about Batman. Stick to that, and you might have a successful movie. Change any of that and why the Hell did you buy the rights to Batman?

Blog notes begin now.

Beginning – I love it. Seeing Henry with his mom as she sings makes a nice beginning despite the change. As I get older, I realize that movies cannot be exactly as you expect them. I accept the changes as much as I can, it’s an alternate reality. His mom dies differently, but I don’t care. It’s not important.

Henry looks gaunt like he’s supposed to and ruggedly handsome like he’s supposed to instead of pretty boy like I thought Eric Bana would look. He looks like he’s lost weight for the role. He looks perfect.

He looks dragged down, like he’s having a rough time when he first meets Claire, just like he’s supposed to.

Claire looks like an actress I know, then she becomes Claire. First conversation is okay. I feel like I’m seeing the book.

Okay, enough with the time jumping already, we get it. He time travels, stop over-emphasizing it.

Okay, wait, what? She can’t tell him about Doctor Kendricks and he’s not supposed to drink at their first meeting, WTF? He’s not supposed to drink when they try different medications - not EVER. Drinking KEEPS him from time traveling. It keeps him in the present. That is such bullshit. Who was this written by; a recovering alcoholic or the American Politically Correct Committee? I mean, seriously, saying Henry doesn’t drink is like saying Superman can’t fly.

Watching him drink water for 2 hours is painful it’s such a departure from the novel.

Okay, wait, what? She tells him way too much stuff first meeting and jumps him way too fast. Didn’t he say go easy on me?

You can’t change some things, I’m sorry.

1. Gomez is supposed to be bigger. Not that big a deal, whatever.
2. Henry drinks. Period. It’s a huge part of the book. Making him drink water at social gatherings is idiotic.
3. Henry needs to run. All the time. This is important to the end of the book
4. He eats voraciously.
5. The first time he meets Gomez and his girlfriend, he saves dinner, not a tough scene to pull off.

They show Henry running a couple times. He eats a couple times and not much when he does.

He cooks. Claire doesn’t. These are actually important things to know.

See, all these little touches bring LIFE to the characters. Personality. Henry HAS to run, it’s a major theme in the book and never taking even 30 seconds to explain that is an insult and lessens the impact of him losing his feet. His metabolism is on overload. He needs to eat a lot, drink a lot, run a lot, have sex a lot, sleep a lot. NONE of that is explored or explained in any way in the movie.

Back to the notes-

He meets his mom on the subway? You didn’t choose to show one of the many poignant scenes described in the book of him being friends with his mom and dad and going to the beach or having dinner with them? The subway? Really?

Claire’s hair isn’t the right color and it’s not supposed to be up so often. Henry loves her hair. Henry may love her hair more than he loves Claire herself.

He disappears more times every half an hour than he did in the whole book and they never link anxiety to it.

Half way done – already married, pregnant, vision of Henry dying on floor. Already? Seriously?

They are focusing on the wrong parts of the book. This book was so rich with brilliant imagery, funny lines - personalities so deep that you felt like you knew them. Instead they have chosen to focus on Claire’s constant miscarriages, she and Henry fighting, Henry being depressed. It’s like they took this brilliant love story and thought “How many times can we make the audience feel sad? How many times can we make them cry? How can we take these fully realized characters and make them two dimensional?”

They took some beautifully crafted scenes in the book and changed them for no reason. In the book, when Henry goes to see Doctor Kendricks, multiple times, he finally convinces him eventually by handing him a note.

“Read this when your son is born.”
“I’m having a little girl.”
Henry nods.

The lab results have gotten mixed up and The Kendricks have a son with Down’s syndrome. He open’s Henry’s note and reads this information after being informed this.

In the movie, he sees Kendricks twice and tells him “The Bhurger grant? You’re going to win it.” This convinces him. Are you kidding me? That doesn’t even make sense!

Why take a beautifully crafted scene like the one I described and reduce it to this drivel?

They never explain he can’t watch TV, then taking a great scene like winning the lottery and turning it stupid by going into a TV store. Buying the house was also great in the book and they turned that stupid too. Seriously, horribly crafted and wouldn’t have taken any more time.

You know, there’s a bunch of changes that didn’t bother me, so I’m not just being negative. I don’t care that we never got to see Kimee, or know that Gomez is in love with Claire, or that Henry’s father was a great musician, or ignoring the fact Henry has a psycho ex-girlfriend, or he teaches his younger self to pick locks and steal wallets. Or the fact he’s in danger of losing his job because he’s found naked so often and disappears for hours at a time. FINE! None of that is important.

Skipping the fact that many in Claire’s family say to Claire “I could swear I’ve seen him before…” is just dumb. Changing the way he presents the lottery ticket to Claire is stupid. Changing the house buying scene is idiotic. Changing the first dinner with Gomez and Henry saves the day was unnecessary and stupid all at the same time. Not showing that Henry is a great cook and has to teach Claire how to before he dies is stupid. Claire’s hair not being red and long is stupid. Skipping the scene where he disappears in church, shows up at his apartment and his future self tells him “Relax, you’ll be back in two minutes.” Is again, stupid.

It’s like the screenwriter read the Cliff notes on the book.

If they read it, they didn’t get it at all.

I did like many of the scenes and they were just as I imagined them. I liked the first time he meets Claire in the field and again, the first time he meets her in the library. I love Eric Bana’s look and performance. I loved how dragged down he looked the first time Claire meets him and his and her reaction. I loved him beating the crap out of the homophobe and then explaining to Gomez what’s going on. Scenes right out of the book, done right, or close enough. There were some parts that were beautiful and a lot that just sucked and could have been fixed easily. They just didn’t get it. And skipping scenes or changing scenes so that you can show more of Henry and Claire fighting or having a miscarriage…. Where is the sense in that?

Sadly, I will probably watch it again and just FF past the parts I don't like, which would be about 60% of the movie.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Dreams, Reviews, Weddings and more.

Let’s start with a video recommended to me by one of my bestest ever friends, Miss Lorelei.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHGcvj3JiGA

“No Time to Think” is a video about information overload. (Don’t worry, the guy with the hard to follow accent is not the main speaker, he just introduces him.) It is a fascinating piece on information overload, advertising, the internet, the great manufacturing machine and testing. One of the parts that really struck home was about a woman who won a prize in medicine. She said the way she figured out the solution was to stop and think. Rather than see some test results, make a quick conclusion, then move on to the next test to see what you can find out, she just stopped and thought for days on each test. She didn’t just proceed to the next test which is what most people in her field did. She just thought - and solved the problem.

And then they started talking about the environment, I got bored and turned it off.

But as Lorelei had told me, let it sink in for a few days. It’s really starting to make an impression on me and I might go back and watch the end of it – if I can find… the… time. See how dumb that reads?

I strive to get better at being in the moment which I have talked at length on before. I am getting better but this video emphasizes that in completely different manner. Even while watching it I decided I only needed to listen and opened up my digital pictures folder and deleted repeats, out of focus, too dark and other bad pictures; while listening to a video about information overload. Oh, the irony!

“Vanity Fair” is a perfect example of what this video is talking about. Stories are interrupted by pages and pages of ads, some pages have six different little subjects and blurbs. The table of contents starts on page seventy. I skim though it at blazing speed, reading snippets here and there, tiny factoids that interest me and half finishing full articles that fail to hold my attention.

I read an article in “Vanity Fair” last night about John Hughes that was fascinating. Do you know he wrote Ferris Bueler’s Day Off in a week? He used to keep notes on how much he wrote in one day.

Tuesday: Night only – 10 pages
Wednesday: 26 pages
Thursday: 19 pages
Friday: 20 pages
Etc

He’s the guy who also wrote Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, Home Alone, Plane's Train’s and Automobiles, The Breakfast Club, and She’s Having a Baby.

And then one day he did something I am surprised more people don’t do. He left it all behind. He had enough money to retire, work on his farm and spend time with his family. Which on one hand baffles me and on the other I totally understand. Like George Clooney. Or Bill Gates. You’re worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Or Billions as the case may be. Why do you keep pushing so hard? How many movies does Clooney make in a year? How long did Bill Gates run Microsoft even though he was the richest man in the world? Why not just quit and enjoy life?

And of course I know the reason why some people quit and some people do not. Like me. A dozen years ago if I was worth a hundred million dollars I think I would have just quit and stayed home and played video games. Now, I can’t imagine not writing. I can’t imagine getting just one book published, I want dozens. I want to travel even more and report all the amusing anecdotes and strange sights and wonder to anyone who is interested in travel journals. I want to entertain people for years, not one book. I don’t want to ever quit and work around the house.

I think it was Ray Bradbury who said that “Writers write because they have to write.” I have to write. (I wouldn’t wish this affliction on anyone.) But then I need feedback. John Hughes continued to write in notebooks but never showed them to anyone. His sons have found three hundred notebooks so far since he passed away in August last year.

Today, I am not doing well to just think about things and to be in the moment. I started this at ten this morning and since then have sent out three emails, read a “Time” magazine article about some movies I might like to see and sought out their reviews on the web, remembered there is a UFC this weekend and went to see who is on the main card, got back to writing this, remembered Wendy and I need to decide on food for the BBQ and went down to the other end of the apartment and discussed that for ten minutes. And now I’m back. Speaking of the wedding…

No matter how much it costs to use this website, if you are getting married, I couldn’t recommend a better one.

http://www.weddingtracker.com/Main/Default.aspx

Not that I would know how hard it is to set up said website because Wendy did all that. I wrote a few pithy lines and then I go look at it every now and then to see who has RSVP’d and what they are having for dinner. (So far, steak is winning by a landslide.) But, I think she did a fantastic job and it looks amazing. I have been debating about putting it up here because I don’t want any hurt feelings. But hey, as Wendy rationalized the other night: “People know we’re getting married, they know we can’t invite everyone, I don’t mind if you post a link.” I’ve been debating with it for a few days and I know there are people out there who would like to see some pictures or waste some time on a boring work day and Wendy put so much work into it I decided why not. So here’s the link:

http://www.wendyandjamie.com/Home.aspx

“Lost” continues to annoy us; the main reason being that they never really answer anything. Even in its final season they continue to wrap a riddle in another riddle inside another riddle. The second reason “Lost” is so annoying is the jumping around, which has always been a problem. But last season and this season has been beyond the pale. Each episode is about the past, the present, what might happen, parallel storylines, people jumping through time not once but multiple times for many weeks, while others are stranded in time. Thank God it’s the final season. I am betting the ending will be similar to “Twin Peaks” in the sense of wholly unsatisfying.

Game Play Randomness: At five this morning I woke up after a truly weird dream. I felt like I had had this dream before and I knew what was going to happen. These three guys are going to come in and try and kidnap me, but my accomplice knows this and we leave before they get there, avoiding any conflict. So, that time is coming up in the dream, but rather than leave, my accomplice starts making sandwiches, the three men barge in, and we have to fight for our lives. It was a great fight and we won. Then I woke up.

Current replayability in games is based on alternate beginnings, making different choices or alternate endings based on those choices. For instance – In Dragon Age you can choose your beginning race and class. A human noble Fighter’s beginning of the game will be vastly different than a woodland elf mages beginning. Thus, once you finish the game, you can go back and replay the beginning and see what it is like to play as another race or class. Moral choices are presented in the game and if you choose to play “good” one time through and “evil” another time through the ending will be vastly different. Hence, replayability.

I think the next step in game evolution will be scenes like the dream I had last night. What if you start out as a human noble and, much to your surprise, events unfold in a completely different manner? You make all the same choices and now you’re sitting there thinking “Okay, this is the part where the castle is under siege in the middle of the night and I have to get my armor.” Only, the siege doesn’t happen. Your character wakes up in the morning and he has breakfast and the game goes in an entirely different direction. Most modern hard core game players would be like “WTF just happened?”

I predicted it first.

Lastly, I am sorry Jim, we could not finish The Hurt Locker. It’s not that it was a bad movie, it was the fact it pointed out so well and so obviously, we need to get our troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan now.

The story focuses on a unit working in Baghdad and how you never know who the enemy is and who are the friends. All you’re trying to do is help, but you never know when someone is going to shoot you, watch you blow up, or befriend you. I’m not giving away any spoilers when I describe this scene. A car has been wired to explode, on a random street in the city. Not next to an Army base or anything. An American demolitions team goes in to try and disarm it. It’s a tricky thing to disarm and part of the team is keeping an eye out for hostiles. An Iraqi shows up on a rooftop with a camera and starts filming. Why is he filming flickers across the men’s faces. Men come out on balconies to watch. Could they be armed? Do they have a detonation switch? Are they just curious to see what will happen? More people start to gather on rooftops or balconies and watch the men trying to protect the demolition expert. Hostiles? Friendly? Ambivalent? The tension is mounting the longer this takes and the demolitions team is getting jumpier and jumpier the more Iraqi’s they see.

That’s when we turned it off.

See, I know it’s a great movie, but all it made us feel was “What are we doing there? Why are we disarming bombs and trying to protect the populace that generally wants us to leave? Why don’t we just leave the car with the bomb in it, right where it is, and see what happens? How will that affect the war and the Iraqi people?”

I know that’s a perfectly simplistic view and the situation is more complex than that, but that was all we could see. Get out of Iraq now was all we could feel watching up to that point. The Iraqi people might stand up. They might erupt in civil war. They might… who knows? But how long can we stay there and disarm bombs? We have been there longer than the duration of World War I and World War II combined.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Wendy and I are getting married this August.

Weddings are an odd thing. There are so many choices to make, so many traditions to follow or ignore, so many people to invite or, worse, not invite. So many things that are possible, and impossible.

We have found a fantastic venue, a great cake maker, a great photographer and an amazing videographer.

It was funny. I investigated a number of videographers and found one who has examples on his website that literally brought me to tears. (I am a big girl, but no, still not gay.) I showed it to Wendy while she sat on my lap in front of the computer, thinking she would be as moved as I. While I have snot and tears running down my nose she says “I hate Dave Mathews” which the video montage was set to. Sigh.

Click this link then go to “demo videos” first one.
http://www.weddingvideoman.com/

We were going to have “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol as our wedding song since it meant so much to us when we first met, but really doesn’t fit us anymore. “Will you just lay with me and let the world pass us by?” Wendy and I never let the world pass us by. The song just so doesn’t fit our life. It might be a good wedding video song though.

Invites were hard and something I am struggling with today. Wendy said to me yesterday “If I could have the perfect food for our wedding, I would have the chicken tostas from Casa Lucas, the fried Fois from Vero’s wedding, and centoyo (which I am spelling wrong but is the Spanish word for Spider Crab.) But that is not possible and she knows that.

Somehow, I always thought my perfect wedding would be making an announcement on my website saying “EVERYONE’s INVITED TO THE KING OF THE FATTIES WEDDING!” Everyone. Anyone who reads my website, anyone I’ve ever know, just….

Everyone.

I live next to my parents and that’s not a bad thing because they are amazing. With their backyard and mine we have about four acres of space. I’d invite everyone to put sleeping bags on the floor, put tents up, get porta potties and have this huge barbecue, party, Magic tournament, drunken Carcasonne and a priest who would say “Do you?”

“ I do.”

“Me too.”

“Then you’re married”

Honestly, I have looked into this, those can actually be your vows and make you legally married in Vermont.

But, like Wendy’s dream of Fois, Tostada and Spider Crab it just isn’t realistic. Hell, I can’t even invite all the people I want to just because of personality conflicts, being out of touch, friends who now hate me, people who were important a long time ago and have drifted away and other factors.

There is one guy who I have not invited who I think is a king among men (If your name doesn’t begin with a K, then no, I am not talking about you. You, I still hate and will never forgive you for making Mare cry), but I don’t think he actually likes me anymore. But he is such a good person he would show up and be there and wish me the best, but I don’t think he really wants to see me or make the effort to be there so I am using my best logic and not inviting him. There are a ton of people from my days of Magic that I want to invite but they are not people I have hung out with for a long time. I love them but the wedding right now is all about people who have always been there. Who remain a part of my life or have been there for me always. Hilary and Michele, Joshie, Deb Brisson, Leigh Guptil who worked with me 20 years ago at the Middlebury Inn, was my roommate, has always been a good friend and who I correspond with and see every time I am home. We are big fans of each other.

If I had my way, I would invite Ben and Kate, Adrian Sullivan, Tom Gueven (whose name I ALWAYS misspell) , Hammer, Mark Rosewater, the entire crew of anyone at Magic R&D who had any input whatsoever on “Timbermare”, every one of my ex-girlfriends I am still friends with, (Which would be all of them) Pete H, Dave Meddish, Chrish McMahon, The entire Stole family (Trisha!) who I think are the smartest, best looking, funniest people I have ever met (and I’m related to them!) the entire Magic and Poker crew who were the most important people in my life for eight years but who I rarely see now, childhood friends who made me who I am, Just about every single teacher at MUHS where I worked for five years and they gave me nothing but love and support which I will never forget.

But I can’t. My web of friendships is so vast that as soon as I leave a select group of people who have always been there for me, for literally 20 years, it means everyone comes. Which I would like, but we actually discussed the outdoor option and we can’t make it work.

Anyway, that’s it. If you’re not invited it’s either an oversight or a very hard decision I had to make based on the above criteria. If you think it’s an oversight, email me and I’ll correct it. And if your name starts with a K and you really do want to come, let me know. I'll add you in a heartbeat.

Monday, February 8, 2010

So, we’re watching “Bones” and “Fringe” and “Castle” and as usual, TV follows a certain formulae that I hate.

Why don’t they shoot people more? And how come every time they shoot someone, they die?

“Stop! FBI!” and the guy goes running off and the agent chases them. Sometimes they catch them, and sometimes they do not. Usually the agent is running with a gun in his or her hand . Why exactly don’t they shoot the perp in the leg? Why exactly do cars get to go screaming off, the agent fires a bunch of shots which might or might not hit the back window and shatter it but they never shoot for a tire?

And what is the deal with no romance between the two stars? This was a disaster on “Moonlighting” and ever since then it has been forbidden to have two people, obviously attracted to each other, obviously in love, obviously lusting after each other – pretend that no such feelings exist. Its become a Hollywood cliché that as soon as you have the two main characters fall into bed the series is done.

Bones and Booth, Lightman and Foster, Castle and Nikki Heat, Agent Olivia Dunham and Peter, even Loker and Torres! There is steamy chemistry on all of them but never a kiss or a date or a coupling because that’s taboo in Hollywood. Get over Moonlighting already and learn how to keep a series alive when you have the main characters date.

Okay, anyone out there watch Fringe? How many of you knew that Peter would be glimmering when Olivia looked at him, proving he was from the other side? We thought it was pretty obvious for weeks but maybe we’re just really smart smart :-) Did they over-play their hand or was anyone surprised by that?

I have been reading some Doonesbury archives and I have to agree with one observation. All HD does is show you how bad someone’s skin is. In all two of the movies we have seen in HD, the only thing that changed for me was the fact that I can see the pores of the actor’s skin. Disturbing.

Last and probably least, my hatred of the term “African American” continues to grow. When it’s used on TV it just annoys me. There was one sprinter interviewed after winning a race and the female interviewer was asking “How does it feel to be an African American who…”

“I’m from London.”

“What?”

“I’m not African American, I’m from London.”

“But as an African American…”

“Look, what don’t you get? I’m not African American; I was born and raised in London. I’m English. I’m not African American at all.”

Sunday, February 7, 2010

More UFC 109

If I was a betting man, I would have lost a lot of money last night.

I have actually bet on a UFC event once in my life and made $500 on it. When Jens Pulver lost to Joe Lauzon. I only bet against Jens because he was such a heavy favorite. I bet on all the underdogs on that event. Every other underdog lost. (Now that I know Jens, I would never, EVER bet against the man just because he is such a good soul.)

Last night, I would have lost a lot of money. I was sure Swick, Marquart, Couture and Trigg would win. I was so sure I almost bet a lot of money on all of them. I was wrong about everyone but Couture.

My good friend, Dave Meddish, says I should update more frequently with smaller posts. I agree with him. So, there you go.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

UFC 109

Experts are predicting Trigg loses to Serra.

Um.

No F'ing way.

The fight is tonight and I predict Trigg destroys Serra.

We'll see in 6 hours.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Lobsters never die. Sort of.

I was thinking last night while I lay in bed, failing to fall asleep. Time is usually divided into two periods, those being “B.C” and “A.D.” Now, I’ve heard those don’t actually mean “Before Christ” and “After Death” but that’s generally how they are viewed. If so, we need a new time period.

A man stumbles into a small town after being lost in the desert for years. After getting lots of water and a cheeseburger (because everyone who has ever been lost when asked what they most want to eat they inevitably reply with “A McDonalds cheeseburger.” Well, they usually say a Big Mac, but those hadn’t been invented yet.) He approaches a man and says “I’ve been lost for so long, what is the date good sir?”

“Why it’s Tuesday, August 5th, 11 D.C.”

“D.C? What’s that?”

“See that boy over there? That’s Jesus Christ. For some reason, the years started with him. When he was born we stopped counted the years in negatives and started over at one. No one knows why. So right now, we’ve gone from “Before Christ” to “During Christ.”

I guess what I’m saying is, how do you catalogue those years when Christ was alive? B.C. was before he was born and A.D. was after he died…

I am fascinated by lobsters. Do you know that they are one of the few species that scientists believe will only die due to injury, illness or predators? They actually get more sexually potent the older they get and they never die of old age. In one of the parts of my book I mention viewing a white lobster in a tank in Madrid and had to look up what it was. Turns out lobsters come in all sorts of colors, the albino or “crystal” lobster being the rarest color mutation with only one in every one hundred million lobsters being white.

http://scienceray.com/biology/marine-biology/distinctly-rare-and-unique-lobsters/

Yes, we are back in Madrid and I have been busting my ass editing my book that I thought I was done with; which is why I had to go look up lobsters again. Turns out it still needs more editing. I ordered a proof that was formatted incorrectly and I’ve been told by a couple people that quoting from Wikipedia and other sources detracts from the story and it should be told in my own words. So, I have to re-write a ton of stuff, like the lobster pigmentation thing and the Look magazine thing on Juan Carlos, Spain’s king and other stuff. It took me TWO DAYS just to fix the formatting errors in the book.

So… tired… of not having anything new to market.

God.

Someone once said “Writing a book is like building a house. Except a house is less work, takes less time and you know it’s going to be finished someday.” Never has that seemed more true to me than now. The books are just never good enough. I have written and revised hundreds of thousands of words and it always needs more editing. Wendy has Marilyn's Story and (rightly) has a bunch of changes she thinks should be made, the European book is being edited by Dave Meddish, my mom, Chris McMahon and I've collected two hundred pages of Quest for the Pro Tour II and have edited some of that to try and make it a cohesive story but NOTHING IS FINISHED! I've been working on this shit forever and have NOTHING to show for it.

I quit working on writing at 8:00 last night, completely fried and loaded up “Dragon Age.” Best damn game I’ve ever played. Well, solo game, since nothing can beat MMORPG’s but I’m sick of those right now. Playing Dragon Age as a human noble, the beginning feels like I’m playing through “A Song of Ice and Fire” dog sidekick and all. The voice acting is superb, the graphics insanely good, the combat strategic and involving. I am LOVING it! Thank you Wendy for getting it for me for Christmas.

I played until Wendy quit working on wedding stuff at 10:00.

Just wanted to give you all a quick update, not very amusing or interesting, I know, but I can’t go weeks without having an entry. After I finish up all the edits sent to me I’ll hopefully have something more amusing to post. Wendy’s birthday is this weekend so I should have some good stories to tell on Monday.

Oh well, gotta put my back against the grindstone again and get back to the book.

Have a good weekend all.