Monday, December 29, 2008

The Dark Knight








This is definitely a movie to see on the big screen. I will admit I have enjoyed all the Batman movies – even with Val Kilmer and the batsuit with nipples. Before the Nolan involvement my favorite was the original one with Michael Keaton, but I will say Batman Begins is now and still my favorite. I will put The Dark Knight in between Batman Begins and Batman.

Batman is my favorite superhero because he is an ordinary man without superpowers. While he is a vigilante he tries to do the right thing.

People are saying that Heath Ledger should receive an Oscar for his performance. I thought he did an excellent job as the Joker. He made the character his own which can be difficult when you think about Jack Nicholson’s performance. However, movies of this type are rarely nominated. I would hate for him to be nominated because of his unfortunate death.

I was a bit disappointed they didn’t do more with Harvey Dent as Two-Face. But then even before they had Two-Face with the Riddler. I did like they way the ideals one holds can be thrown away under tragic circumstances.

I also wish that Maggie Gyllenhaal was the first Rachel Dawes or had brought back Katie Holmes. Out of the two Maggie was more believable, but Rachel was not a main character either.

The Dark Knight is a great edition to the Batman franchise and I hope that Christopher and Jonathan Nolan stay with it. They returned Batman from a cartoon to an action hero.

Nights in Rodanthe



This movie is based on the book by Nicholas Sparks. It is an enjoyable movie to watch, but my biggest criticism about it would be how could one weekend “save your life?” I would label myself to be the walking oxymoron of the cynical hopeless romantic. Yes, I believe “the one” exists and I even believe in the overused term of “soul mate.” I happen to believe mine is a very late bloomer or is no longer alive.

The scenery is absolutely beautiful. I would love to stay in that beach house and walk along that beach. I would also love to find a community that has those clam bakes. This is the perfect setting in my mind.

I do believe that people come into our lives for a reason. That reason may not last as long as we would like it to, but we learn something or appreciate something because of that person. In this movie you see how their lives had changed because of their meeting, and even falling in love.

I cannot find the quote from it, but in the end she tells her daughter not to settle on love. The person that you love should not make you someone that you are not and not less than what you are.

This is not a movie I will buy, but it was
a nice one to watch.

Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons



I read this book for a book club I have joined. Not to insult my book club, but I wish mine was more like this one. They were friends that helped each other out. The one I am in is almost too large and we’re not really comfortable in expressing strong opinions.

It starts out in the 1960s and goes into the 1990s. There is Slip – the activist, Audrey – the curvy sexpot, Faith – the liar of her past, Kari – the widow, and Merit – the survivor of domestic abuse. While more books were read each chapter is about the person that chose a particular book – some books were discussed more than others. However, you could see these women being neighbors and even friends.

I found this book to be very hard to put down and I really enjoyed the characters and how they grew in their 30 years together as a book club. We also got to see how their children grew and became the people they are because of their mothers. I wrote down the books they had mentioned in the book to read, and I had already read some of them. I would also like to read more books by Lorna Landvik.

Lilibet


I really enjoyed this book on Queen Elizabeth II. Most biographies will make you really like a person or not like them. I walked away feeling pretty much the same about her. She is very much a traditionalist and trying to rule as her father would have, and often times this would cause her to make a decision without making a decision. One would be on not forcing Winston Churchill to resign due to health reasons, and the other involved her sister wanting to marry a divorced man. Other times is showed she has a lot of bravery – especially trying to stop a run away carriage and an assassination attempt.

Diana is often referred to as the People’s Princess, and from reading this book, before she was Queen, Elizabeth, was the People’s Princess. I think the two might not have liked each other very much because there were many similarities. However, the main reason Lilibet did not open her heart to Diana is because of her actions before she married Charles. Both were age 19 when they married. Lilibet was crazy about Phillip and this (her) love is what has kept them married for so many years, and she never saw that with Diana.

This book also makes one think of alternate history. What if during World War II had Hitler succeeded in invading Great Britain, and reestablished King Edward XII (a Nazi sympathizer) to the thrown.

From reading this book I have a much better understanding about Queen Elizabeth II and the British monarchy.

No Greater Love



Every now and then I’ve got to have a mindless read and Danielle Steele fits the bill. I had friends in high school that would only read her books. There are a few I really like and I could put No Greater Love in that category. Edwina is 20 years old and on the return portion of her engagement trip on the Titanic her parents and fiancée are unable to leave the ship. She is left to raise her siblings on her own. Mourning her fiancée she will not consider marriage to anyone until the children are grown. Phillip leaves to attend Harvard, but drops out to fit in World War I or the Great War. George is the next to go to Harvard, but leaves to go to Hollywood and make movies. George becomes a success and his younger sister Alexis dreams of becoming an actress. Not only are George and Alexis’ futures held in Hollywood, but Edwina’s also ends up there.

While most Danielle Steele novels have similar plots this was a fun but sad read. She stayed true with the character and there was no dramatic jump which left me thinking where did this come from?

My favorite Danielle Steele books are: Wings, Jewels, and Mixed Blessings. I can now add No Greater Love to that list.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

P.S. I Love You



I like Chick Flicks. Not only do I like them but I love them. This one a fantastic one. Holly (Hilary Swank) and Jerry (Gerald Butler) are a married couple. The scene before the credits are them in a fight, however, by the end of the scene you see how in love they are. Her father left when she was 14 and he tells her that he will never leave. After the credits we are seeing his memorial service, Jerry died of a brain tumor. He has the memorial service that I would hope to have when I go - I don't want anything that is formal.


On her 30th birthday he sends her a letter telling her there will be more to follow and she must do what the letters tell her to do. In the end he wants her to find the girl he met when she was 19 years old and traveling Ireland. She had no idea what she wanted to do with her life, but she was full of dreams. The final goal was for her to realize that while she was his life, he is only a chapter in her life.


I don't know if I will ever have a love like that, but this movie tells me that great love still does exist. I've seen a few marriages that I do hope to have one like that someday. However, I also realize what we see on the outside isn't necessairly on the inside. In many ways I do feel that i my destiny to enjoy the journey by life on my own and not with that great partner.


In some ways I am reminded of the movie My Life with Michael Keaton and Nicole Kidman. However, this was to help his wife heal instead guiding an infant son to be a man. Probably because I lost my father I love the movies that reach to us beyond the grave.


Hilary Swank did an excellent job. She usually does such serious movies and I am glad she chose this one. I have grown to like her as an individual because she still seems to be a real person.


Gerald Butler's Jerry is the boyfriend/husband I think most women would love to have in their lives. I've enjoyed him very much in Phantom of the Opera. I haven't seen a lot of his work but I have enjoyed watching him on Jay Leno and the other talk shows.


Lisa Kudrow's character was great. She gave me some great ideas for meeting guys. Are you single? Are you gay? Are you working? Then kiss them - and either stay or walk off.


James Blunt's the Same Mistake is a great song for the movie too. How many times if would we make the same mistakes knowing how it would turn ouut and end.

Why I Love Little Boys




These are pictres from an email that I got. If I ever have the opportunity I would like to have a little boy. Little boys have stolen my heart - they can be so onery and are so curious about the world. There has been a little girl that has stolen my heart as well, and her mother has already promised over 10 years in advance that I will get to go prom dress shopping and be a part of her life. Little girls are harder for me to connect with...but a little boy all I have to do is flip him upside down and we are friends for life. Now if only it would work on the boys my age, but then I don't think I would want one that I can flip.




Why I Love Little Boys
















Why I Love Little Boys











Things Little Boys Have Taught Us
1. A king size waterbed holds enough water to fill a 2000 sq. ft. house 4 inches deep.
2. If you spray hair spray on dust bunnies and run over them with roller blades, they can ignite.
3. A 3-year old Boy's voice is louder than 200 adults in a crowded restaurant.
4. If you hook a dog leash over a ceiling fan, the motor is not strong enough to rotate a 42 pound Boy wearing Batman underwear and a Superman cape. It is strong enough, however, if tied to a paint can, to spread paint on all four walls of a 20x20 ft. room.
5. You should not throw baseballs up! when t he ceiling fan is on . W hen using a ceiling fan as a bat, you have to throw the ball up a few times before you get a hit. A ceiling fan can hit a baseball a long way.
6. The glass in windows (even double-pane) doesn't stop a baseball hit by a ceiling fan.
7. When you hear the toilet flush and the words 'uh oh', it's already too late.
8. Brake fluid mixed with Clorox makes smoke, and lots of it.
9. A six-year old Boy can start a fire with a flint rock even though a 36-year old Man says they can only do it in the movies.
10. Certain Lego's will pass through the digestive tract of a 4- year old Boy.
11. Play dough and microwave should not be used in the same sentence.
12. Super glue is forever.
13. No matter how much Jell-O you put in a swimming pool you still can't walk on water.
14. Pool filters do not like Jell-O.
15. VCR's do not eject 'PB & J' sandwiches even though TV commercials show they do.
16. Garbage bags do no t make good parachutes.
17. Marbles in gas tanks make lots of noise when driving.
18. You probably DO NOT want to know what that odor is.
19. Always look in the oven before you turn it on; plastic toys do not like ovens.
20. The fire department in Austin , TX has a 5-minute response time.
21. The spin cycle on the washing machine does not make earthworms dizzy.
22. It will, however, make cats dizzy.
23. Cats throw up twice their body weight when dizzy.
24. 80% of Women will pass this on to almost all of their friends, with or without kids.
25. 80% of Men who read this will try mixing the Clorox and brake fluid.




Funny Images









Just thought I would share some images I got over email that I thought were funny.

They've Got Bigger Problems


In South Carolina, Dillon police said a 13-year-old boy with an "interest in law enforcement" twice stole a police cruiser and took it out to do some patrolling. The boy's mother saw him bring the car home both times, but didn't see anything wrong with the joyrides, said a police sergeant. Police said residents called 911 to say they'd seen the boy driving a police car. He said the boy also took the cruiser the previous Sunday and drove it around before returning it to the station. No on noticed it was missing. The boy apparently watched someone enter a code to get into the department, and then used it to get in and take the keys to the cruiser, the spokesman said. (if a 13-year old lad easily stole a police car twice and no one noticed that it was missing, the town has a bigger problem than it realizes.)


complied by James L. McClinton, Ph.D

Memento


This is a very different movie. It is one that I will need to watch this again because it was a complicated movie. Lenny's wife was killed and he is out for revenge. However, it did remind me of the movie with Dana Carvey called Clean Slate where he lost his short term memory. One difference is this guy does remember his past up to the point where his wife was killed. I really don't want to say much more because I don't want to ruin the story, but also because I do want to watch it again and catch more of the details.

What has the world come to....

In order to complete a recent transfer of a prisoner from the city jail to Britain's Northampton Crown Court (located just across the street), officials had to summon the closest prison van (57 miles away) to come give him a ride. The prisoner, an accused thief, could not simply be walked across the street because officials feared that public, custodial exposure (a "perp walk") would embarrass him and that would be in violation of his "human rights."

complied by James L. McClinton, Ph.D

One Night at McCools



This movie was okay. Not a bad movie, but not a keeper. Liv Taylor was very beautiful, and she was suppose to be even though she is heavier than normal. Goes to show you do not have to be a size 2 to be considered beautiful. However, I don't understand how these guys would do anything for her.
The other interesting aspect to the story is that you get Liv Tyler, Matt Dillon, John Goodman, and Paul Reiser different view points. Also there is no character in this movie that you really like and that you decide not to like as well. They characters all have their flaws.
What I don't really understand is how John Goodman's character say her as a "Madonna" as in the Virgin Mary not the performer. However, she is closer in peronality to the performer than she is the virgin. Especially after the car washing scene.

Thief Gets Carjacked

A man in Salina, California, recently stole a Chevy Silverado pickup. He then stopped at a convenience store for a snack where another man hopped in with him, flashed a gun and demanded that he start driving. They had not gone very far before the truck ran out of fuel. The brilliant carjacker then ordered the original car thief to get out and push. He gladly obliged by jumping out of the cab and, then, running off. Feeling as though he was the hapless victim of a crime, he then called the cops to report that the truck he had stolen had been, in turn, carjacked from him. Being advocates of equal opportunity incarceration, police arrested them both.
complied by James L. McClinton, Ph.D

She's the Man

Why is it when I was in high school there were no high school movie? Once I was in college 10 Things I Hate About You and She's All That. It looks like I live on the cusp - not exactly a Generator Xer yet not a Generation Yer either.
This was a cute movie. I do like Amanda Brynes. Her girls soccer team gets cut because they don't have enough player and they will not allow girls on the boys team.
Her twin brother has to go to a new school because he was expelled for absenteeism. Needless to say he has the opportunity to go to London for the first two weeks of school and needs Viola to call in for him. She decides to be Sebastian to get on the soccer team. Needless to say she falls in love with her/Sebastian's roomate Duke.
Not a movie you have to think much about which is a good thing since it was 3 AM when I put it in the DVD player. My favorite movie of hers is still What a Girl Wants.

Georgia Rule



I found Georgia Rule to be much better than expected. My mom had seen it and enjoyed it - otherwise I probably would have skipped this one. Why? I'm not a Lindsay Lohan fan. I just get sick of all the tabloid press on her - really who cares.
The story centers around Rachel (Lindsay Lohan). She graduates from school in January and is free until she leaves for college in the fall - and she gets into trouble. The only thing her mom, Lilly, (Felicity Huffman) can think of is to send her to Idaho to stay with her mom, Georgia (Jane Fonda).
Lindsay ends up revealing some information to her boss - the story is centered around the question - is Rachel telling the truth or is she making this information up.
The unspoken question is how do life's events change us? What is a survivor? This is a movie I can watch again because it does have more than just one layer to it. Also there are times that you really like each of the leading women and times that you really don't like them - which I find to be good character development. To be able to get more than one emotion out of the audience about your character in less than 2 hours is fantastic - actually for some actors to get you to even develop an emotion about a character anymore...
While I'm not walking away from this movie as a Lindsay Lohan fan, however, I do realize that she has some talent. I will say the character of Rachel does make you think they have similar personalities with the way the press describes Lindsay. I just hope that she is able to grow up and actally pick roles that she can use her talent rather than just be in the tabloids.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Reservoir Dogs



I was very surprised that I enjoyed this movie. I had seen Pulp Fiction and did not like it. I did see Jackie Brown and enjoyed that one. That was the total of my Quinton Tarantino education.
I thought this was well written and very well done. I loved the "Like a Virgin" and the naming of the colors conversations.
Steve Buscemi is one of those actions that is not typical Hollywood, but I have enjoyed his performances.
Harvey Keitel is an actor I know I've seen him in several movies, but I never recognize him. I enjoyed his performance as well as Mr. White.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Survivor Mind-Set

Survivor Mind-Set
By Laurence Gonzales
  • The belief that you control your destiny versus believing that it is controlled for you.
  • Deny denial – refuse to allow yourself to believe that “this can’t be happening,” and recognize the threat for what it is.
  • Think positive, in terms of how the experience will help you grow as a person.
  • Know Plan B – set specific goals as well as actions to take if they are not met. Rehearse these actions, so that they are easy to remember even when you’re under stress.
  • Do the next right thing – find activities which allow you to think sequentially.
  • Use a mantra, a short word or phrase which keeps you focused on what will get you home alive.
  • Understand linked system – the ways in which your own and others’ action affect each other.
  • Don’t celebrate the summit. Most climbing mishaps happen on the way down, so don’t spend much time enjoying the “goal” if it is really a halfway point.
  • Get out of your comfort zone – challenge yourself to think in a new way to learn something which will use different parts of your brain.
  • Risk and reward – with regard to danger, think in terms of what you will get out of it and the most you are willing to risk for that reward.
  • Trust your instincts – even if there is no obviou8s reason not to trust a person or situation.
  • Help others – taking responsibility for others moves you from “victim” to “rescuer” mentality.
  • Be cool – unlike acting “cool,” actually being cool involves maintaining “relaxed awareness” which makes it easier for survivors to maintain or regain emotional equilibrium under stress.
  • Surrender, but don’t give up – recognizing one’s limitations allows a survivor to keep going.

    Above all, a survivor mind-set must being to be practiced immediately – waiting for a situation which demands it will be too late.

C.O.P. - Child on Patrol



Since the police can't be everywhere, an 11-year-old boy in Louisville, Kentucky, is conducting his own patrol in the Stone Lakes Division. the lad says he used to shout at speeders to slow down, then, he had a better idea. Dressed in a reflective vest, wearing a bicycle helmet and armed with a Hot Wheels brand radar gun, he points and records the speed of passing traffic. The boy also carries a flashlight with a built-in siren. One resident of the subdivision said he has seen drivers lock up their brakes when they saw the boy clocking them. Officials say the city will install speed bumps in the neighborhood if 70 percent of the resident agree and are will to put up half the money.

compiled by James L. McClinton, Ph.D.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Reliving Childhood


Last night I relived a happy part of my childhood. Slightly over 18 years ago I went to my first concert - New Kids on the Block. Last night I saw them again. I had begun to wonder if they were good performers or if my 12 year old self thought they were that great. Last night told me they were great performers. I had a good time. I was in the cheap seats, but had a great view with binoculars. I am very glad I went, even if it is a bit embarrassing to say that I went and saw New Kids on the Block.

When I saw them on the Today show back in May I had wondered if they were trying to stay "teenagers" and continued to question with the video Summertime. However, they had aged their performance appropriately. They even commented on the fans being able to drink beer, being pregnant, and they guys in attendance were going to benefit tonight.

I remember with Cover Girl they would have a little girl that was between the ages of 2 - 5 on stage with them. On the screen they had the girls dancing in the box displayed and lots of booty shaking.

I'm glad to see they are back and I wish The Block continued success. My only complaint about their new album is they should release another song or two from it.




Atonement



This was a film I watched over the weekend, and I loved it. I had wanted to see it in the theaters, but the opportunty just didn't work out. If I remember the Kite Runner came out about the same time. I had wanted to see both movies. I read the Kite Runner for a book club and was very disappointed by it (the last 4th I didn't care for), and doubt if I will see the movie. I wondered if I would enjoy Atonement. I'm glad I took the chance when I bought the movie.
It shows there are always more sides to a story than what one sees. It did take a moment for me to realize the first time a scene was replayed with a different characters perspective. I enjoyed that aspect.
How can you correct something you did that was wrong so many years ago? I don't want to say much more because I don't want to destroy the plot. But it does get me to thinking about what I may have done wrong and how could I correct it.
All actors did a fantastic job. I especially liked the way Briony was aged through out the film.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Litigation and the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill


I apologize for attaching the entire journal and just not just the article. This is an interesting publication I receive at work. The article I’m commenting on is the cover story: Exxon Valdez Oil SpillAdd Image Litigation and Community Resilience

I thought this article was very interesting about the Exxon Valdez oil spill and the litigation surrounding it. I have been frustrated with the court system and how people “profit” off something bad happening to them; however, I also believe that companies have an environmental and social responsibility. Exxon Mobile made a profit of $40.6 billion in 2007. The $5 billion they are fighting over is a drop in bucket compared to last year’s profits.

In 19 years of litigation how much did Exxon Mobile spend on legal fees? Exxon walked away with just a tap not even a slap on the hand. While the environment suffered – only 10 out of the 26 species have recovered from the oil spill damages. The spill had killed 250,000 seabirds, 144 bald eagles, 4,400 sea otters, 300 seals, 20 whales, and destroyed billions of salmon and herring eggs. Yes, they had to pay for the environment clean-up which came to over $3.4 billion, but that is required of any spill that occurs. The communities also suffered – the 1990s economic boom skipped those affected by the oil spill. The disaster relief that is available during natural disasters from the government and supporting agencies are unavailable during technological hazards.

I’m not in favor of people getting unreasonable amounts of money because something bad happened to them. However, I also don’t like seeing companies not paying for the destruction they cause. I would have liked to seen some kind of a compromise in this situation. Maybe have the money go to saving endangered species native to the area. Maybe a focus on rebuilding communities that rely on oil production as their sole source of income, or assisting in attracting other income sources – industry, research, etc. Doing more in the field of alternate fuel sources and making things “greener.”

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The House Bunny


I will say this movie is one where you get what you expect. I wanted to laugh and not have to think too much and this is exactly what I got. It was fun.
I saw this one with my girlfriend, Julie, and she enjoyed it too. One of the things she commented on was Anna Faris' stomache.
I kinda knew that Demi Moore's daughter Rumor Willis was in the movie. I was surprised to see Tom Hanks & Rita Wilson's son Colin (although he looked familar), and Katherine McPhee.
I saw the positives in this movie - you need lot learn to be yourself. The ZETA girls tried to be what Shelley wanted them to be and enjoyed the results, but learned they need to also be themselves.
I was reminded of Legally Blonde, but this movie wasn't meant to be that. It wasn't like Shelley got inspired to be a better person. She wanted to be a centerfold.
It was funny seeing Hugh and his former girlfriends in the movie.
Relax, and have fun with this movie.

Muriel's Wedding


I had bought this movie thinking that I would really enjoy it. I like Toni Collette, and have enjoyed the movies. I thought this would be different. This is one of her earlier movies and she has had her teeth fixed and lost quite a bit of weight.

This movie was on the depressing side for me and I didn't find the humor in it. Muriel believes that getting married will be her way of proving that she is worth something. When she does get married it is a scam to keep an athlete in Australia. When there comes a time that he shows compassion she decides now is the time to stop living a lie and to leave him.

I guess I do like the end in some ways because she becomes the friend she should be, and they say their good-byes to their small town.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Mr. Blackwell: From Rags to Bitches


I had acquired this book from our annual library booksale. On Sunday (the final day of the sale) when it is $3 a bag you can be more experimental than usual. Anyway, I had seen his "worst dressed list" and was curious to find out what kind of a guy he was. He had died a few weeks ago, and this book was in my site. I'm trying to read books from the sale and give them back. I might do bookcrossing.com with some of the paperbacks.

This was a very easy read. There were times in the beginning that I didn't care for him, but as I read the book I actually grew to like him. Did you know that Howard Hughes gave him his last name, Blackwell? I'm also a bit jealous of his relationship with Robert Spencer. Robert was his partner for 60 years. I was very surprised that they lasted. Blackwell was very tempermental and selfish, but Spencer stuck by him. Don't think it was for the money and fame because when they got together Spencer was the one supporting him. Eventually Spencer was his manager and right hand man.

I do think that Blackwell was very honest. As I said there were times that I didn't care for him as a person. He never really tried to defend himself either. He was pretty much this is my life and what I did. I have no regrets.

That is the way to live - with no regrets.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Angels and Demons


I recentally finished Angels and Demons by Dan Brown. The movie with Tom Hanks should be coming out soon. I enjoyed this much more than I did The DaVinci Code. I found Angels and Demons very hard to put down. I read most of it on the plane, and didn't mind the 3 hour ride each way.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Mini-Mangino



Rock Chalk, Jayhawk

Go KU

For those of you that don't pay attention to the University of Kansas football team (2008 Orange Bowl Champions) this baby looks exactly like the head football coach, Mark Mangino.




Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Devil in the White City

I highly recommend this book. I’m reading this for a book club. The characters were real people. The two main characters are architect Daniel Burnham and serial killer Dr. H. H. Holmes. Before reading this book I didn’t know much about the 1893 World’s Fair or Chicago. I had heard about it. This book does a fantastic job explaining how the fair became a possiblility. I love the quote by Daniel Burnham, "Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood." Now I’m wanting to visit the Second City and find out more about architects Burnham and Olmstead. Olmstead is responsible for Central Park in New York City and for the grounds at Biltmore in Ashville, North Carolina. His philosophy was to look at the future with landscape architecture and not just make it look pretty for today. The author Erik Lawson does a great job with research and incorporating pieces of historical documentation into this book. He also wrote a book about the 1900 Galveston Hurricane called Issac's Storm. Being Disaster Chick that only seems to be appropriate reading.
I found The Devil in the White City hard to put down. Approximately every other chapter covered Burnham then Holmes. It kept the story moving and made me want to find out what happened next. I'm usually not big on reading and watching crime and forensic based media, but there were times I was more interested in the Holmes storyline than in the Burnham storyline. I find it hard to believe how someone could be like Holmes. Also because of designing the World's Fair and the demands he ended up being a better architect than if this opportunity had never happened.

Monday, October 13, 2008

SCUBA


It looks like I'm going to get certified in SCUBA this week. I've got my book work done and watched the video. Last Tuesday I took "Try SCUBA" and really enjoyed it. I found out that it is a lifetime certification. After this weekend when the opportunity arises I can jump on it.

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday I will have instruction. Friday I leave for Stockton, Missouri and Satruday and Sunday I will be diving for my certification.

I don't like to be told I can't do something. I don't know if I will ever be a great diver. I'm one of these people who are about a mile wide and an inch deep with knowledge. Or another way to put it jack of all trades or master of none.

I'm looking in the near future taking a motorcycle riding class though Harley Davidson. This way I will walk away with knowledge and get a motorcycle license. Gas prices have lowered again, but if they go sky high this would be an option for me. Also on vacations I could rent a scooter or motorcycle for transportation. Maybe I will even get one of my own someday.

Hmmm....what other classes can I take for more knowledge.

The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio




This movie was really good. I think it did an excellent job showing a woman in the 1950s and also what life is like living with an alcoholic.




There have been several Julianne Moore movies lately that I haven't cared for : The Hours, Far from Heaven, and Children of Men. So I figured I was taking a chance.




I enjoyed how they ran though some of the prizes that she did win but kept it interesting - breaking that wall between the actor and the audience.




You can also see how times began changing. Companies were not using marketing departments or advertising agencies but relying on their customers advertising idea. The movie begins closing with the fact contacts began to require no skill.




This movie was well written and well acted. I also was impressed with the fact the Kelly children stood behind it and appeared in it at the end of the movie.




If you have not seen this one yet, I highly recommend it. Not only does it show a piece of history, but it was enjoyable.

DISASTER HAS A PASSPORT

This weekend I watched Mr. Bean Takes a Holiday. I love Mr. Bean. I think Rowan Atkinson is a genius for physical comedy. I didn't care for the first movie, and I think they brought the magic of the TV Series to the big screen - especially near the end.

I also love seeing him in movies like Four Weddings and a Funeral and Love Actually. I enjoy British humor.

I bought my copy at Sam's Club because I got the Mr. Bean bobble head. I also liked the tag line, "Disaster has a passport." I was a bit hesitant because as I said I didn't care for the first movie, and I hadn't seen this one.
I'm needing to get my passport soon. I'm going on a cruise in April. Also you never know when you might need one.

What I loved most about the movie was the ending with Bean's home video spliced in to the film. This one is a keeper for the collection.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Young Guns


I just finished watching the movie Young Guns. I saw Young Guns II when it came out on video so long ago. I need to rewatch it because I remember really enjoying it. However, that was also when I had a huge crush on Christian Slater. I never saw the original Young Guns. I figured tonight might not be a bad night to check out Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland, Charlie Sheen, and Dermont Mulrony.


Growing up in Kansas I've known many men that should have been alive during the days of the Wild West. I have been to Dodge City and seen Boot Hill. Watching this movie, while it was decent, made me realize this era does not grab me. I've also gone to St. Joseph, MO and have seen the house where Jesse James had lived and was killed. Maybe if we are reincarinated then I don't think this would have been a time period that I would have lived in because of a lack of interest.

It was nice seeing Brian Keith and Jack Palance. I grew up watching The Parent Trap and With Six You Get Eggroll. However, I would never have guessed that this was him, however, IMDB has it in the credits and in trivia. I remember Jack Palance from the City Slicker movies and it is hard to believe he is dead. I guess that is one of the great things about movies - you are now immortal - and probably in the prime of your life. I also find it great that John Wayne's son Patrick was in the movie.

I really don't see this as a movie I will over and over again. I think I will sell it to CD Tradepost. However, I need to see how well I enjoy Young Guns II because it would be better to keep the set vs the sequal.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Wicked Game

I never thought I would feel this way, but Wicked Game by Chris Issac seems to be the way I feel right now. Elton John says it so well - sad songs say so much. I know I will be fine eventually, right now it just hurts. I wasn't looking to fall in love, but I did. Then my love was rejected. Is it really worth it? Not so sure anymore.

Guess there are times when we all need to share a little pain
And ironing out the rough spots
Is the hardest part when memories remain
And it's times like these when we all need to hear the radio
`Cause from the lips of some old singer
We can share the troubles we already know
Turn them on, turn them on
Turn on those sad songs
When all hope is gone
Why don't you tune in and turn them on
They reach into your room
Just feel their gentle touch
When all hope is gone
Sad songs say so much
If someone else is suffering enough to write it down
When every single word makes sense
Then it's easier to have those songs around
The kick inside is in the line that finally gets to you
and it feels so good to hurt so bad
And suffer just enough to sing the blues
Sad songs, they say
Sad songs, they say
Sad songs, they say
Sad songs, they say so much
Wicked Game - Chris Issac
World was on fire, no one could save me but you
It's strange what desire will make foolish people do
I'd never dreamed that I'd need somebody like you
No, I'd never dreamed that I'd need somebody like you
No, I don't wanna fall in love
This world is always gonna brake your heart
No, I don't wanna fall in love
This world is always gonna brake your heart..with you
What a wicked game to play
To make me feel this way
What a wicked thing to do
To let me dream of you
What a wicked thing to say
You never felt this way
What a wicked thing you do
To make me dream of you
No, I don't wanna fall in love
This world is always gonna brake your heart
No, I don't wanna fall in love
This world is always gonna brake your heart..with you
World was on fire, no one could save me but you
It's strange what desire will make foolish people do
No, I never dreamed that I'd love somebody like you
I'll never dream that I lose somebody like you, no
Now I wanna fall in love
This world is always gonna brake your heart
Now I wanna fall in lust
This world is always gonna brake your heart..with you
Nobody loves no one

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Why Alone is Enough

Is being single a choice? Are singletons too picky? I don't think it is a choice or being too picky. Does anyone ever plan never finding someone to share their life with and just being alone?

I just read this article on Amy Cohen and near the end it talks about a biking trip she took in the Colorado Rockies. There were a couple of married women that told her she was so brave for doing this on her own. She didn't view herself as being brave. I understand because when you are single sometimes you cannot find someone that is willing or able to share those activities with you. If you want to them then you go out on your own. I am now planning on reading the rest the book sometime.

I don't think being single is necessairly a choice because it is not one person making that decision. My longest relationship of 2 and 1/2 years had ended and less than a year later he was married. He had only met her a few months before we broke up. For a long time I thought he was the guy I was going to marry.

As for being picky my list of someone that I would want to date includes: average attractiveness, at least as intelligent as me, has a sense of humor, has a sense of life and adventure, has personality, and can hold down a job. And he has to find me attractive and enjoys being around me. While I think my list is pretty simple I think it may be hard to fulfill.

The overall idea I got from this article is how I try to live my life. Do the things I enjoy doing - even if they are alone.

Monday, September 29, 2008

But Not For Me

They're writing songs of love - but not for me
A lucky star's above - but not for me
With love to lead the way
I've found more clouds of gray
Than any Russian play - could guarantee
I was a fool to fall - and get that way
Hi ho alas and also lackaday
Although I can't dismiss
The memory of his kiss
I guess he's not for me
I was a fool to fall - and get that way
Hi ho alas and also lackaday
Although I can't dismiss
The memory of his kiss
I guess he's not for me
-George Gershwin

I just had my heart broken this week. I think for the first time in my life I allowed myself to fall in love. I've been in relationships before, but not in love. I did love the guys from my past but I was not in love with them.

Now I'm back to believing this should be my theme song. I do believe in love. I just don't think I will ever have a successful relationship.

We met on my favorite holiday, the Fourth of July. Buck is recentally divorced, but convinced me to take the chance on this Long Distance Relationship. He said that luck favors the bold instead of just waiting to see what happens. Grad school just become too much - something had to go. That something is me.

The kicker is Buck says that I didn't do anything wrong. He still wants to be with me but doesn't have time for him much less us. I understand, and willing to do what ever it takes to make it work. He doesn't want to be unfair to me. However, I'm the one that is tearing up or crying all the time for the last week. I've never been this emotional before and I hate it.

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Other Side of the Story


I just finished reading The Other Side of the Story by Marion Keyes. I love her writing. This one I didn't get as absorbed in as I usually have with her books. I was able to put this one down to read Angels and This Charming Man also by her. As I near completion I found it hard to put it down.
This one is about the publishing industry - one agent and two authors. Gemma's father leaves her mother after 35 years of marriage. The mother needs Gemma because her life revolved around her husband. She makes up stories about her dad's new life and sends them to a friend that forwards them to Jojo and agent.
Jojo is having an affair with her boss. She is an agent to Lily and Gemma. She was a police officer in NYC, but ended up in the publishing world in London. She is the best agent, and there is a retiring partner.
Lily is living with Anton and they have a daughter Ema. Anton is a dreamer with high ambitions. Lily and Gemma used to be friends, but each needs to learn to follow their hearts and learn to forgive.

All I Ask of You


A PET'S TEN COMMANDMENTS . . .


1) My life is likely to last 10-15 years. Any separation from you is likely to be painful.

2) Give me time to understand what you want of me.

3) Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being.

4) Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainment, but I have only you.

5) Talk to me. Even if I don't understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me.

6) Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it.

7) Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I could hurt you, and yet, I choose not to bite you.

8) Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long, or my heart might be getting old or weak.

9) Please take care of me when I grow old. You too, will grow old.

10) On the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can't bear to watch. Don't make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there, because I love you so.

I did not write this, but wanted to share it with all willing to read.


Thursday, September 4, 2008

Lessons Learned

The lessons really aren't learned for very long. How long the lessons actually stay in one's mind depends on how traumatic the disaster is.

- B. Wayne Blanchard, Emergency Management Institute



I'm getting ready to move my office at work later this month and I've been buzy sorting through stuff. I have a stack of magazines that I don't want to move so I'm spending the time to flip though them.

I've been doing my job for a little over 6 years now, and have only had to respond to disasters in the past year and a half. Nothing major had occured in the previous years.
I worry that if we go though another four+ years of no major disasters that we are going to lose what we learned over the past year and a half.

I also see where this applies to every day life. How many times do we as humans repeat our mistakes. How bad does it have to be before we honestly mean, "I'll never do that again." Can we really learn from others mistakes? How bad does their mistake have to be before we really do learn from it?

I was playing a video game this past weekend and it was pointed out to me that I kept making the same mistakes over and over again. I didn't realize this, but someone from the outside watching noticed. Maybe we just need to have those people in our life point out when we keep repeating our mistakes.




Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Joys of LDRs




I have just finished reading The Long-Distance Relationship Survival Guide: Secrets and Strategies form Successful Couples Who Have Gone the Distance by Chris Bell and Kate Brauer-Bell.

I actually enjoyed reading this book on the plane ride back from seeing my boyfriend. It did give me some good ideas and tips. It talked about having virtual dates, creating schedules, and things like that. It was a very easy read and looks at successful and non-successful LDRs.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

This just can't be your car...

A man was being tailgated by a stressed out woman on a busy boulevard. Suddenly, the light turned yellow, just in front of him.

He did the right thing, stopping at the crosswalk, even though he could have beaten the red light by accelerating though the intersection.

The tailgating woman was furious. She honked her horn, screamed in frustration, dropped her cellphone and make-up as she missed her chance to get though the intersection.

As she was still in mid-rant, she heard a tap on her window and looked up into the face of a very serious police officer. The officer ordered her to exit her car wiht her hands up.

He took her to the police station where she was searched, fingerprinted, photographed, and placed in a holding cell.

After a couple of hours, a policeman approached the cell and opened the door. She was escorted back to the booking desk where the arresting officer was waiting with her personal effects.

He said, "I'm very sorry for this mistake. You see, I pulled up behind your car while you were blowing your horn, flipping off the guy in front of you, and cussing a blue streak at him. I noticed the 'What Would Jesus Do' bumper sticker, the 'Choose Life' license plate holder, the 'Follow Me to Sunday-School' bumper sticker, and the chrome-plated Christian fish emblem on the trunk. Naturally, I assumed you had stolen the car."

- sent to American Police Beat by a subscriber
I started this blog because of a WG friend named Doc. He introduced me to his blog You Just Keep On Believing That and I finally started participating last week. I won the coveted Giant Peach Award.



The article came from an Italian priest that was organizing a beauty pagent for nuns. The word game was to put in The worst idea ever for a beauty pageant involved _______________ .

I put in high school lunch ladies, and won.

Just to give you a bit of background. I moved 1/2 though my freshman year of high school. My first high school technically I started in 7th Grade. Very small school about 30-35 in my would be graduating class. Kindergarten though 6th Grade are in the elementary school and 7th - 12th are in the high school. We ate lunch with the upperclassman and had the same teachers. At my first school which had a large Italian population actually had yummy food. There were two of my classmates and one girl a year younger than me whose mothers were the "lunch ladies." Remember here the food was good and we knew the cooks.

I moved to the middle of nowhere. You could not get a clear radio station unless it was country. This is 1993 and country is starting to be popular, but isn't quite there yet. My school took in surrounding towns creating a whopping 71 in my graduating class. This was the first time I experience "mystery" meat. One time a guy at the next table found a cockroach in his chicken sandwich. Over 1/2 the school was absent the next day, and of course it "wasn't because of the chicken."

We also had scary looking lunch ladies and you never knew where they came from. Did they live at the school? They even had to fix our prom meal for us - just imagine how fun that was.