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Monday, September 24, 2012

Cobwebs in the Brain

Sometimes Mondays are the hardest days to get moving. Today was one of those days. I made it out of bed but I had slept through my alarm and while my brain may have decided that I needed that extra sleep, I did not agree to that and I do not like it when my body and brain conspire against my wishes. I would much prefer it if I could only sleep a couple of hours a night. I know it is healthier for the body and the mind to get 8 hours or more of sleep a night but I never seem to make that anyway so why not break it down to 2 or 3. I wonder if I could train myself to subsist on that and how long it would be until I went mental from that. When I am feeling foggy on mornings like this one of the things I like to do is to listen to an upbeat song and that sometimes clears the cobwebs from the old noggin. Today was one of those days and I needed this song to get my going. The artist is a Korean gentleman name PSY and the song is super hot right now.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Coffee-shop Etiquette

So I had an interesting conversation with my father a few weeks ago. He had told me that sometimes he goes and gets a donut and then takes it too the coffeeshop to drink with his coffee. Now this particular coffeeshop has pastries but not donuts. There is a company in Salem called Great Harvest that does some really amazing breads and scones and muffins and cookies and they supply this coffeeshop with those tasty treats but they do not make donuts.

I told my dad that I didn't think it was correct to bring your own treats to a place that already has treats for you to purchase. I do not know store policy on this but it just feels wrong to me. Well today as I was beginning my morning job search and enjoying my super tasty Americano, I noticed a fellow come in wearing a suit and carrying a cup of Starbucks. Now, the perceived quality of Starbucks coffee aside, it really seemed like the wrong thing to me to carry in another companies coffee to drink in a coffeeshop that makes a totally different brand of coffee. I just do not understand why someone would do that.

To me it is like taking my Big Mac to Burger King. Who does that? Why would you do that? Are you that clueless about things? It just makes no sense to me. It probably bothers me more because of how much I love Broadway Coffeehouse  but I also know myself enough to know that if I was in another restaurant and the same thing happened I would be taken aback by it. It seems a real lack of common sense to me to not drink or eat from the place that you are meeting. They are kind enough to provide you a location and sometimes free wireless and other things. The least you can do is too purchase something from them. Because if you continue to not purchase things then it is quite possible that the place could go out of business and no one wants that.

So in closing please continue to patronize your local businesses and support your community. If you are in Salem then by all means give the Broadway Coffeehouse a try. If you like coffee you will not regret it. They serve Stumptown exclusively and that, my friends, is good coffee.

(Puts soapbox away) 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Blue Monday

Today isn't a "Blue Monday" but it is a groggy one and this song always gets me going. I love most of the music from the early 80's at least the early 80's new wave stuff. I hope you enjoy it as well.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

$5 Movie Review

I went out last night and had my usual Tuesday night $5 movie experience at my local Cinebarre and as is the the norm, I enjoyed myself. I usually do and to be honest for $5 it is really going to have to be a bad experience and a horrible film for me not too. I know the Cinebarre experience is not for everybody but I have found that for me it works great and is a pretty inexpensive night out. Now if you buy a bunch of beer and eat and do not look at the price then, yes, you will soon lose all of the savings that you gained by going to the $5 movie in the first place. But that is on you and I not be held accountable for your choices!! I just won't be!!

So last night I went to see 'The Expendables 2' (Trailer below)

For me, the bottom line, and pretty much the litmus that I now measure all of my movie going experiences by at this point. I ENJOYED MYSELF. It was fun and I suspect that I may have even enjoyed it for $10 or more. Now, that being said, lets say I had gone in expecting some different kind of material maybe a darker grittier take on international relations and gun trafficking with perhaps an insightful look at the dangerous nuclear stockpiles laying dormant in some of the old Soviet Union countries. Two things. 1 I would have been foolish to have expected such a thing from this film and it would have been my fault for not paying attention to the trailer or having read anything about the film. 2. I would have been really disappointed because this was not that kind of film at all.

It was a film that really was made for fans of action adventure films and for anyone who had grown up in the 80's since it starred a majority of that decades top action stars. In this case being Stallone, Willis, Schwarzenegger and some other lesser lights as well. If you are a Merchant & Ivory fan this is not the film for you and you have wondered into the wrong theater. This is not a film for everyone but it does not need to be. It does exactly what it is supposed to do which is to blow stuff up and let you as the viewer blow off steam. It is just great popcorn movie fun. So if you are looking for a little escapist fun. Do yourself a favor and take next Tuesday evening and go watch this movie. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Doors

“If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, Infinite. For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things thro' narrow chinks of his cavern.”

― William BlakeThe Marriage of Heaven and Hell

I am not really a fan of Oliver Stone at all. In fact I really think that the best thing he has ever done was to write the original 'Conan the Barbarian' film and pretty much everything else has been overwrought shite. But since I have Netflix and I find myself with a lot of time on my hands right now. I end up watching a lot of movies as I apply for jobs and as I work on my writing. This means that sometimes I watch things that I would not watch at other times in my life. One of those films which I watched just today was Oliver Stones' 'The Doors'.

I hate to say it, but, I like this film. Now I am not sure if that is because I like The Doors as a band. Because I really do. I love their music and in high school I spend a lot of time listening to just The Doors, Jimi Hendrix and Cream. So I really kind of immersed myself in their music and in the ideas of Jim Morrison. Now as I grew older I also began to realize that while I really enjoyed the music and liked his singing, as a person Jim Morrison was seriously flawed and had a serious drug and alcohol problem. In the movie it is really easy to get the impression that he is high or drunk almost all of the time so it is not a real shock that he died young. Though to be fair it seemed like a lot of those musicians from that time period were competing to see who could die the youngest and in the most extreme way or the saddest. (Look at that, I got sidetracked)

The other reason that I think I probably enjoy the film is because of the presence of Val Kilmer. While it is true that Kilmer has become somewhat of a sad joke now there was a time when he was arguably the biggest actor in the world. I really enjoyed his work in almost every film of his (Not Batman Forever) that I have ever seen pretty much regardless of the subject matter. Seeing him put on Jim Morrisons' skin is almost freaky because near as I can tell he almost becomes him. His method style of acting can become unnerving for the people around him because he almost becomes the role and when he is playing a dangerous or deranged character he goes all in and there does not seem to be a separation from  the stage to the real life.

I want to recommend a couple films of his for you to watch along with 'The Doors' film. The first is a film that I have talked about before .'Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang'

This film also stars Robert Downey Jr and I think is vastly underrated and kick started the comeback for RDJ. He is amazing and so is Valk Kilmer in this one. The other film is one called 'The Salton Sea'

He plays a drug addicted Jazz Musician in that one. Check them out and you will see a couple of really excellent performances. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Joy of Community

There is a little television show that has been my favorite thing on television for the last three years. Well, this last season it hit a little bit of a road block, in that, CBS decided to move their highly rated and very popular (because people like dumb things) 'Big Bang Theory' to the same time slot so that it could compete directly against 'Community'. This led to a further fall in the ratings and finally the network (NBC) fired the show creator and runner Dan Harmon and then moved the show to Friday nights.

As you can imagine this caused quite a stir among the fan base for the show. I am torn because while I feel a loyalty to Dan Harmon, I also really like the actors that are on the show and I want them to continue working and to continue to enjoy them playing the characters on the show. So I am hoping that the show will continue to be of good quality and enjoyable to me. Also I really should be happy because most shows that I like tend to get canceled within a year or two. I like to think that is because my taste is so refined and of such high quality that the rest of the common people just are not able to handle it.

Really though I am writing this post mainly as an excuse to post a couple of pictures of that cast that I really liked.

This was from an episode where Jeff Winger went undercover as a street Magician a Criss Angel type of character and Britta was his assistant. I found the whole thing highly amusing but what really surprised me was how attractive I found Britta in her costume. I had no idea that her look would work for me like it did. I also thought Jeff looked amazing which left me confused and slightly ashamed but I think that is really just because I was jealous of how he looked and really wish that I pull it off. That would be awesome. 

Have a good week folks. 

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

To Be Honest About Politics

This is really how I feel and I felt this way during the last election as well and the one before that. Sure I lean left. But I lean so far left that to be honest I am off of the scale of the typical Democrat and Republican and when the last few Presidential candidates are all rich guys who graduated from Harvard it is hard for me to think that the world is going to be ending if Obama or Romney is elected. We survived 8 years of Bush. We can survive 8 years of Obama and the world as a whole doesn't revolve around what happens in America as much as we would like to think it does. 

Monday, September 03, 2012

Time Travel

I just finished watching a fascinating little film called "Safety Not Guaranteed". Watch the trailer.

The film has been out for awhile and showing primarily in art houses so if you live in Portland you should be able to find it. It is also in Salem at Salem Cinema and I highly recommend going to see it if you have a chance. As well as just enjoying the film as a form of escapism it also made me think about time travel. Really about going back in time and the reasons to do so.

I think most of us have choices that we would rather have another chance to change. For some of us it might mean a chance to ask that lost love out or to fix a mistake we made. Some of us would just want to use the time to make some more money and to make their lives better. I can't imagine anyone going back in time to do anything but making their lives easier in some way. I mean, otherwise, what would be the point of it all. Sure you could go and observe things but why would you not want to fix things and right some wrongs. Sure you might mess up the time stream continuum but if you were the only one that knew it was messed up then who cares.

Disregard all of my amateur philosophizing and give this movie a shot. I imagine it will be out on Netflix soon but either in the theater or at home check it out. I think you well enjoy it.