Monday, March 31, 2008

Sinuses, Lousy Movies, And Grocery Shopping

I ended up being up later than I'd planned, until around 3:00 on the morning, but I was able to finish the blog as I wanted it to be posted (though I did forget the little church sign shtick I've been doing recently), and I wrote the review I'd wanted to finish before calling it a night.

I was asleep about an hour and a half before my sinuses woke me up, feeling nearly nauseous from the drainage that suddenly hit me. I was thus up and down most of the night, finally getting some decent sleep between 7:00 and 10:00 this morning, my planed workday blown off completely when I found myself awake at 5:45 trying to breathe properly.

The weather today was windy with a lot of dust blowing around, presumably my issues last night were indicative of this stuff blowing in. Bah, the allergy thing is driving me nuts.

The wife and I have been trying to make a small bit of effort to eat more at the house to try to get away from the constant rotation of restaurants and fast food joints we frequent, so we went grocery shopping this afternoon. I'm proud to say that we did pick up salads and several different varieties of fruits for snacking, instead of a bunch of sweets and shit like that. Don't get me wrong, I don't think either one of us foresees going into total health nut mode, but it's nice to have some kind of healthy options around the place instead of snacking on a stick of butter wrapped in bacon like Homer while watching television.

Too Trippy For Its' Own Good...I ended up spending most of the afternoon with the television while the wife popped in now and again while doing laundry and other stuff around the house. Once she settled and of course nodded off while I was watching a TiVo'd Simpsons, I decided to try and accomplish something late in the day.

I got the second project I'm working on about half-prepped, listening to a new(Cool) Shite while I did so, they spoke very favorably of Planet Terror this episode, all save for one of the guys, who seems to generally hate fun.

The wife and I watched the last thing we had on hand from those rental throttling pricks at Netfux this evening, which was a film by David Arquette called The Tripper. It pretty much blew across the board, although a film featuring a guy in a Reagan mask killing hippies sounded at least a little interesting, so I was hoping for the best. I was wrong, fuck me for hoping. I don't know if I have the strength to slog through a review of this or not, we'll see what happens later in the week over at the BSL, where you can now read a review for Guy Ritchie's Revolver that was posted today.

There's still not a whole lot going on these days, which makes for easier posting with this crap, but probably a boring read, so I'm cutting this mother short and heading off to dig around the web on all the sites I've been ignoring for awhile now.

Be seeing you.

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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Cinematic Sunday Thirty-One

How in hell can I drink a pot of coffee in the late afternoon and still be sitting here yawning at 10:54 as I finally start to type this crap?

Stand Not Betwixt Me And The Chicken Fingers, Sayeth The Lord Thy God...The wife made some little muffins for breakfast, though we ate very few of them at the allotted breakfast hour. We were both puttering around the house, picking up this or that and I finally suggested driving-thru an early lunch to beat all the Christians in their mad dash for food after worship. We grabbed food and headed home, eating at the kitchen counter area and looking through the paper.

The wife had something ex-sorority related ( I believe it's the time of year when they host a little Q & A thing to try to draw in new recruits) so she went to that in the mid-afternoon whilst I finished watching one of the films I've had in hand from those rental throttling pricks at Netfux for far too long.

I finally watched A Lizard In A Woman's Skin by director Lucio Fulci today, and I have to say I was kinda surprised how restrained this was, for the Giallo genre in general and this director in particular. He's very well known for classics of the horror genre like Zombie and The Beyond, both of which have notorious gore-filled set pieces that have to be seen to be believed, and Zombie has the only instance I'm aware of where a zombie fights a fucking shark. What's not to love?

I took the Yorkie for a brisk walk after the film, since she's been acting perkier in the past few days after her vet ordeal earlier in the week.

I popped in the last film I have in hand to review for Pop Syndicate, the Nick Love film Outlaw, released earlier this month by Magnolia. A fairly basic revenge drama, it features a group of men, all wronged or let down by the law or government who band together to enact some brutal vigilante justice. Starring Sean Bean and Danny Dyer, it was as bleak and grim as I expected, I'll be knocking out the review later tonight once I finish this post.

The wife had come home mid-film, so she caught the end of that with me, then we did our usual Sunday night routine of Fox cartoon stuff, Simpsons, Family Guy, etc., as well as watching the TiVo'd episode of Ghost Hunters that aired this past Wednesday.

And now here I am, trolling for movie trailers once again....

I'll open with Bangkok Dangerous, which is the Pang Brothers re-making their own film of the same name with Nicholas Cage in the lead role. I've not seen the original, though I would like to try and check it out before watching this one, and I've enjoyed other films by one or both of the Brothers, The Eye and The Tesseract to name a few. I'm just happy to see an actor I like associated with directors who generally turnout decent material, this doesn't give me quite the same knee-jerk reaction the trailers for crap like Ghost Rider or Next did the first time I saw them.

There's a new film starring Ellen Page of Juno and Hard Candy fame, which has been shown and released to DVD in Europe already, but will finally creep into American theaters this May. It's called The Tracey Fragments and the IMDB tells me that it's about "15-year-old Tracey Berkowitz is naked under a shower curtain at the back of a bus, looking for her little brother Sonny, who thinks he's a dog.", which means fuck-all in the grand scheme of things as a synopsis, yet paints an interesting mental image nonetheless. The trailer looks equally intriguing, as the storytelling style appears to be as integral as the characters themselves, always shifting and changing. Give it a look:

Finally, a film directed by Brett Morgen called Chicago 10 is a mixed media documentary that utilizes news footage and animation to tell the story of the Democratic National Convention in 1968, then the rioting and courtroom drama that ensued. I'm not sure how enthralling the subject matter will be for me, as I'm not much of a history buff, but the technique looks very interesting, so I can see giving it a peep just out of curiosity. The Rotten Tomatoes page seems to indicate that it was in theaters in a limited run earlier this year, so this may be something to look for on DVD.

I'm out, I have loads of other crap I still want to try and write tonight.

Be seeing you.

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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Wedding Receptions: Better The Second Time Around?

Again, nothing much to report, this may be short again, which works out great, since no one seems to come by on the weekends anyway.

The wife went out early and grabbed some doughnuts, so she was gone when I got up, as we hadn't set the alarm. I guessed where she'd gone and made some coffee in anticipation, so I guess my dick would've really been out if she came home empty handed several hours later, having been at some meeting I'd forgotten she had. We snacked on some breakfast items and I checked e-mail for a bit, then I moved to the couch and started watching another DVD I was set to review for the Pop Syndicate site while the wife did another load or two of laundry.

The wife spent some time puttering around the house while I watched The Good Night, which turned out to be pretty blah overall, though I obviously like the leads, Martin Freeman, Simon Pegg and I can generally tolerate Gwyneth Paltrow, I found myself pretty put off by it. Though billed as a dark comedy, the film wasn't very funny, and the ultimate feeling I came away with was one of sadness, even though I have the impression we're supposed to be happy with the way it wraps up. I'll post the proper link when the review is posted for both of you who give a shit about the extraneous stuff I write.

I wrote a review for that and submitted it, then took the time to write a review of Revolver as well, for our own site. I found myself rating it higher than I thought it deserved just for a few key scenes that I really enjoyed, even though I think the film overall fails in what it sets out to do.

Honestly, Who Would Trust Anyone Calling Themselves The Umbrella Corporation?  People Stupid Enough To Move To Raccoon City, I Guess...I finished up on the web and headed back into the den to see what the Yorkie and the wife were up to. I played with the dog a bit, then settled in on the couch and started flipping around since the wife was napping. I found myself fished into the first two Resident Evil movies that were showing in somewhat truncated form back to back on the Sci-Fi Channel this afternoon. Evidently it's easiest to dub the word 'motherfucker' as 'movitator' when trying to clean something up for television, which I just found endlessly puzzling, as there's no connotation in which the word 'motivator' makes sense.

This evening we attended the wedding reception for Brian's Aunt and her new husband. This being a second marriage for both of them, they had a quick Vegas wedding and fun weekend a few weeks back, and then had the actual party this evening. We went about 20 minutes into the party, greeted the few people we knew (after all, it is a party for a couple we only know through her friend Brian), then made the little buffet line and ate at a table outside the venue to enjoy the evening. Brian joined us and we visited for a bit, then I went inside and ordered a drink at the bar.

"Can I get a Dewar's on the rocks?"

"No." the bartender says, looking at be blankly. Refusing to believe that this is somehow my mother, reincarnated to try and stave of my potential for alcoholism, I paused a beat, then another, weighing my next approach, since this woman wasn't very forthcoming with a suggestion as to what else she could offer me.

"Ookay, what kind of Scotch do you have?" She shows me a bottle of Johnny Walker, I tell her that's fine, tipped her the dollar I already had in my hand and walked away with the smallest little baby shot of Scotch over ice I've ever seen, cursing myself for even tipping her, but I felt like an idiot having already taken out the cash while I tried to order.

I returned to the table, drank about three swallows of Scotch and told the story of why I had such a strange drink, then we stepped inside to check out the dancing which had recently sprung up. We watched as a group of about 11 middle-aged women did the Electric Slide, then the wife nudged me and asked if I was over it, I said yeah, since I was afraid to ask for more Scotch and get told that it would make my tummy sick if I didn't mix it with something, so we said our goodbyes and split.

We were back at the house shortly after 10:00, which worked out well, as that's when I'm accustomed to starting the blog for the evening. I poured myself a proper drink and dove into that while the wife and the Yorkie headed to bed.

Be seeing you.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

Short And Boring

Like my first relationship.

That's what I expect from this post tonight, as very little happened today and I'm not that interested in trying to prop it up and make it sound interesting.

I got up around 9:00, found the wife still here and on the computer, her meetings reshuffled around and leaving her free for the morning. I had made an appointment to see the Hairdresser at 11:00, with the wife piggybacking on that appointment to get her eyebrows tweezed. I showered and put away laundry, then we headed out to do that. The wife got her brows done first, since she wanted time for the redness to subside before we left and faced the world. I found out that one of the Hairdressers' children is pregnant, and that she and her girlfriend will most likely end up near raising the child, as the girl is in her late teens. Weird turn of events, but the kid will have a set of hot lesbian grandmothers, so that's a cool conversation starter.

Disposable Culture CommentaryWe had lunch afterwards, then went by the offices of one of the wife's non-profits to pick up some stuff she had to run downtown. Back at the house, the wife headed out to her thing and I spent some prep time on the new project, getting it ready to work on later in the weekend. I also decided to bite the bullet and tackle some of the clutter in the garage storage, sorting through some of that crap for about an hour. I listened to the majority of a week-old Indie Spinner Rack, which featured a lengthy interview with artist Ted McKeever, which was really interesting. This was a follow up to one they'd done awhile back, in which I was surprised to learn that McKeever is apparently quite a gym nut, and has become quite built in the last few years, something of a rarity in the comic world. If I recall correctly he attributes it to giving up booze and other vices, channeling his energies into something more positive.Ya Wanna Make Something Artistic Of It?

The wife got back from her errands, letting me know that she had to go downtown at 11:00 this evening to help take down some junk from the preview party that was being thrown, so I volunteered to help her do that. She caught a nap while I watched a few Simpsons on the TiVo, then started dicking around with iTunes some more to put together a few CD's for the car.

We had dinner with Brian, along with the rest of the local population at Chili's. Back at the house we checked out The Soup, then I decided to get a jump on this while waiting to run downtown later.

We went downtown and picked up the few accessory items the wife had brought for decoration, chatted with her friend Scrawy McTall for a few minutes, then headed home. We attempted to buy some fresh doughnuts in vain, as they only had cake available, and who the fuck wants that?

The Yorkie was happy to see us, as she's very unaccustomed to anyone leaving the house at the late hour, and I got the wife and she settled in bed before finishing up this.

If you're bored and need something else to read, there's something new I wrote over at PS, as well as a review for Southland Tales over at Big Suck Loser, so clicky clicky. Talk of the Southland, here's a taste of the weirdness, a musical scene of Timberlake lip-synching The Killers' All These Things That I've Done. Timberlake performs a little musical number in an arcade backed by Marilyn Monroe impersonators.

Be seeing you.

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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Digital Housekeeping

I was reading the Frog earlier today, catching up on his stuff from the last few days, and I ran across a line about him burning CD's, which got me to thinking that I've never really bothered to make any kind of mix CD's since I've had the option of burning stuff to disc. This is really strange, considering I used to make boatloads of mixtapes back in the day, I suppose I always figured I could tape over that later if I lost interest in it, where the CD thing is obviously more permanent.

With this in mind I started kinda running a mental list of stuff that I owned like soundtracks and whatnot that lent itself towards this idea as I went about my day.

I worked on the new project this morning, listening to the rest of the new Night Of The Living Podcast while I did so, then a Cinema Diabolica from the first of this year, I'm gradually getting caught up on those, which is cool. I'm really liking the interaction between the two hosts, they have amusing banter.

The wife came back from her museum meeting and we went for a late lunch, stopped at the bank for me and then hit a craft store that she wanted to browse. She found a few odds and ends, then we were heading home when she got a call from her friend JH from her work, so we stopped into the jewelry store she works in for a quick visit.

Back at the house we chilled a bit and wen through the mail. I fed the Yorkie, she's been eating like a horse in between laying about, so we think she may still feel a little blah after her vet ordeal. I started gathering stuff from the media room to put onto these CD's I'm now imagining loading the car up with, as well as burning copies for the wife. When I first met her, she was spending more time at the office and like a lot of people using that time to put together her own CD's, which she's gotten out of the habit of doing. I asked if she'd want me to give her something for her car, and she said that she'd love it, so I was set with the task of finding stuff I like that I thought might appeal to her as well. I'm hoping this proves fairly easy, as she's pretty open minded about whatever we listen to in the car, anything from the old country to psychobilly to the really abrasive gabber stuff, nothing's ever really gotten the old "Can we turn this off?" reception, so that's a good sign.

The only problem I ran up against was the fact that with the backlog of podcasts from last week's vacation and the other stuff still on the iTunes, if I added anything from the growing stack of CD's to the playlist the iPod would refuse to update due to the lack of space in his little memory banks. Rather than put little Agador Spartacus through that, I tackled the monumental task of finally cleaning out iTunes for good. This included finally burning the stuff I've purchased from iTunes over the past few years to disc, something I've put off time and again, as well as creating little covers with tracklistings for all of them, because yes, I'm that anal, there'll be no free-floating CD's in my life leaving me wondering what the hell they could contain.

I made one specific disc filled with stuff from Myspace, from the days before most all of the bands turned off the little download option for their preview songs. I made a litle cover for it using the first girl's picture that popped up under a Google Image search for 'slutty Myspace' because there was a goofy picture in the # 2 spot that I though fit the bill perfectly for a disc titled I Found It On Myspace!.

Not As Sucky As I Feared, But Not As Good As I HopedThis evening I finally sat down and checked out the most recent Guy Ritchie film, which went straight to DVD over here, though it was released in England at least 2 years ago, if I'm not mistaken. Revolver was something of a return to form for Ritchie, back at home in the crime genre after that boring foray into working with his wife on Swept Away. I enjoyed Revolver well enough, though it takes a strangely new-agey twist towards the middle to end of its running time, which caused me to comment to the wife "I think Madonna has fucked the sense right out of him." I may have to give it another look sometime later down the road, but one thing's for sure, it's no Snatch.

I'm out, I have playlists to concoct.

Be seeing you.

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Bitch Is Back.

The Yorkie that is.

I'm happy to report that the dog is doing well, I called this morning and found out that the poor thing was finally going to be able to leave today, but they wanted to keep her until late in the afternoon, presumably to see if she could produce another normal turd.

The wife was tied up with jury duty crap all morning, so I got up, checked in with the vet, checked e-mail and then got to work to try and finish up the two things I've been working on.

I was able to finish both projects in their entirety by 12:30, listening to last week's Mark Kermode Movie Reviews, the newest Dead Lantern Splattercast, and about half of the new Night Of The Living Podcast.

Since we were creeping into the afternoon, I decided to go and grab a bite to eat. The wife called while I was en route to the restaurant, so I got her order, then picked up food and headed back to the house. We ate and watched a few things on TiVo, South Park and whatnot, as well as most of the 2008 Adult Video News Awards before it was time to go and pick up the dog. The thing was broadcast this year on Showtime, so I couldn't resist the car wreck quality of it all, people making giddy acceptance speeches about someone recognizing them for having the best anal sex, it just seems so silly.

The Bossman returned my call about getting together to trade out work stuff, so we left the house a little early to get the dog, stopping at his place on the way. Check and new material in hand, we drove to the vet's office, got the spiel about the bacterial infection that he had found to be the cause of everything, then headed to the bank on the way to the house.

The bank experience annoyed the shit out of me and I ended up just leaving.

Why Yes, You Can Help Me, By Loaning Me A Pen And Pretending To Give A Shit.Y'see, my bank, if asked for a deposit slip, ALWAYS sends me an unwarranted pen in the little carrier, so I hit the 'call teller' button and ask for a pen. I also noted that the fat whore sitting on her dead ass by the window is in the process of texting her pimp or something, looks over at me and then goes back to her 'OMG' bullshit, forcing the girl at the counter across the work area leave her post serving customers inside the bank and come over to deal with me. Then the fucking deposit slip comes through solo, because God evidently hates me, and I asked the wife for the pen she ALWAYS has in her purse, only to find out it got left in another purse or whatever. I'm faced with either sending the damned carrier back to ask for a pen from these people like some kind of helpless asshole who may not even have the right check in his oissession, knowing full well that one of them has zero interest in dealing with me at all, or just blowing the whole thing off and going to a different branch tomorrow.

And killing anyone who doesn't seem delighted to serve me.

I drove the fuck away, telling myself I was an idiot for letting this all bother me so much when I ended up being frustrated because I assumed the wife or the teller would have a pen to loan me rather than bringing my own checkbook like a self contained unit.

Oh well, the bank will be an excuse to get out of the house tomorrow.

I finished watching the Five Days mini-series tonight, so I can write that up for the new site, and if you're curious about the first thing I did for them, it can be found here. The review I did for Spiral is also up for your viewing pleasure over at the Big Suck Loser, if anyone has any interest in that.

Be seeing you.

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Restless And Irritable

I'm completely out of sorts with the Yorkie stuck at the vet for observation, let's just get that out of the way first. This had me on edge and very easily irritated this morning, so when the wife asked me what my day was looking like and then started listening to her voice mail while I was in mid-sentence, I got really pissed, really fast. We made up with that, as I realized I was blowing it way out of proportion, and she felt bad for dialing as she was talking to me, everything's cool, but then as I started to try and settle in to get some work done, she's buzzing around the kitchen doing that weird sing-songy thing she does that she knows drives me batshit crazy. The wife will get some weird chorus from whatever bullshit top 40 station was on the radio in her car stuck in her head, and then repeat it, again and again until I threaten to kill the both of us.

This inevitably leads to the question "Why do you hate it so much when I sing?"

As if repeating the same half of a chorus from a song again and again is anything more than I sign of dementia or tourette's. If she was singing a full song I might not want to beat my head against the granite countertops, but this half a line here and there shit is for the birds. Weeping Jesus on the cross, give me strength.

I finally got her out of the house for a meeting she had to attend, then settled in to work. I listened to a lot of stuff today, as I worked in both the morning and the afternoon, so I heard new stuff from Cinema Diabolica, Destroy The Brain, (Cool) Shite On The Tube, and the Dead Lantern Splattercast over the course of the day. I got perilously close to finishing both of the projects I'm working on, but will still need about three hours tomorrow to get everything finished up completely.

We'd found out that the Yorkie is on the mend, and that they were going to keep her for another day, just to be sure. The verdict is a bacterial infection, so we're going to take her to another vet for a second opinion when we get her back, as this seems weird that she has so many stomach issues so often, there may be another answer.

I showered and dressed shortly before 1:00, taking a break from the work to go and have lunch with the wife. I also apologized to her about the morning, finally deciding that it was my unease at having the dog gone that was making me so irritable.

Get Yer  Geek On!We ended up hitting a few of our usual haunts after the meal, running into our friend Becky who is now working at the Starbuck's within the Barnes & Noble, so I may actually see more of her now. We also hit Best Buy and I grabbed the recently released Justice League: The New Frontier on Blu-Ray, just because it was pretty cheap and I still have some Reward Zone stuff to redeem. I've heard nothing but good stuff about it from both Macguffin and Buckaroo Banzai, so I figure I may as well take part in their reindeer games as well. I also have a feeling that animated stuff will always look really amazing in the hi def format, I watched Paprika week before last, the trippy Satoshi Kon film set mostly in the land of dreams, and that was just amazing to look at.

Lost Highway was released today, and since I've never owned it in any form and I know Lynch doesn't seem to give a shit about producing any supplemental material, and I doubt there'll be any new version of this one cranked out in the next few months, I bit the bullet and picked up the standard def version. I also picked up the Frisky Dingo Season One disc, just because I've enjoyed the ones I've seen in the random order that TiVo has suggested them and I don't think that television shows are going to look that much better one way or the other in a Blu-Ray player.

The wife and I visited her friend that works at a jewelry store, because we hadn't seen her in forever, then headed home and she did some online stuff while I started dicking with my work bullshit again. The wife had an evening meeting, and then wanted to visit her Mother since her meeting was set to end early, which left me free time this evening to write something for the old BSL, since it's been awhile.

I watched a couple Simpsons and then decided to pop in the next thing I'd gotten to review for Pop Syndicate, an HBO mini-series called Five Days. It details the disappearance of a woman and her two children, and the ensuing media surge to find out what happened. The series consists of five hour-long episodes, so I watched the first two this evening, the wife actually caught the last half with me when she got in.

And now I'm here, wasting time again.

Be seeing you.

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Monday, March 24, 2008

Monday, Bloody Monday

I'm pretty depressed and about half in the bag as I type this tonight. The Dewar's on the rocks has been fairly soothing, but overall the day has been pretty frustrating.

This morning Bella, our Yorkie threw up, shortly before I got up. The wife was on the computer when my alarm went off, I stumbled in, said hi and kissed her good morning, she told me about the dog and I went to check on her. I'd guessed she was feeling bad when I made it past the door to the kitchen/sunroom area without her coming to see me like she always does.

I say hello to her and notice a silver-dollar sized spot of goopy blood on the arm of the couch she's sitting on, as well as a larger pool of clear liquid that she'd thrown up on the floor below. I told the wife and she called the vet, but they couldn't get her in until 3:15 this afternoon. We agreed that I'd stay with the pup until then, as the wife had meetings scheduled, and let her know if anything changed for the worse.

I checked e-mail and posted the review I wrote for Pop Syndicate, which I'm guessing should be up over there in the next day or so, then checked on Bella, who looked up at me droopily and then curled back up on the couch.

I was in the middle of starting the next work project when Robbb called me, and since I couldn't really leave I invited him over for a visit. His arrival got the Yorkie all stirred up, but she soon seemed to calm down and lay back on the arm of the couch. Robbb and I were chatting, catching up on the past week or so when the dog started making that familiar hacking noise, and then puked up a puddle of really fresh looking blood the size of a coffee saucer, which was more than enough to freak me out completely.

I called the wife, she warned me that if I wanted to run the dog to the vet it would have to be before noon, as they take a really long fucking three martini lunch, so I threw on some clothes and asked Robbb if he wanted to make the run with me. He agreed and I had to dig around for the Yorkie's carrier for a few frantic minutes, but finally found it in the front closet.

"You ready to look gayer than you ever have in your life, sir?" I asked Robbb, indicating the pink dog carrier my wife had bought. "We're gonna look like a couple frantic fags running our dog to the vet in our cute little pink carrier."

"Uh, yeah, we couldn't look any gayer unless we both had balls in our mouths standing next to the dainty little dog in that thing." he laughed.

I flew across town and rushed the dog into the vet's office, explaining the situation to the desk gal, and we got back into a room pretty quickly. The vet met with us, took her temperature and then an x-ray. There was no immediate indication of a blockage in her stomach, but there was evidence of gas and an upset stomach, so they gave her something for the vomiting and wanted to do blood work, which we could find out about later in the afternoon.

Robbb and I headed back to the house, making a pit-stop so I could grab some take out for lunch. Back at the ranch, I threw in the copy of Southland Tales those rental throttling pricks at Netfux sent last week, because I'd wanted to check it out for quite some time.

This Is The Way The World Ends...Set in Southern California three days before the world ends on July 4th, 2008 and starring most of Hollywood in various small roles and cameos, Southland Tales is Richard Kelly's follow up to Donnie Darko. The film was almost universally reviled when it started screening, so the first chance I've had to check it out is on DVD, and I really enjoyed it. I freely admit that I'm sure there are elements of the film that went over my head, but that's an intriguing concept about this film, the different layers of text and meta-text that there are to dig through. I have to pause to bitch that the studio who released this film, fucking SONY (!) of all people didn't bother to release it on their own format, Blu-Ray, which is annoying as hell, since this is something I'd happily own, but not in standard def, since I know there's the eventual Blu-Ray release coming.

Southland Tales Stars Sarah Michelle Gellar, Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson And Features His Nipples In A Supporting RoleRobbb split mid-film as he had other errands to run, and the wife eventually made her way home. She and I decided to bite the bullet and try to get the grocery shopping done, so we grabbed our list and headed out.

The vet called while we were shopping, and I found out that the blood work came back okay, the dog didn't have pancreatitis, which had been his fear, just some severe irritation of the stomach, which he assumed was food related. I ran through the list of what the dog had eaten, no plants or anything, just a few table scraps here or there where the only things out of the ordinary. The vet would keep the dog overnight, without food or water, just an IV to keep the poor thing hydrated, and unless he called us, we should just give him a shout tomorrow about her condition.

We were somewhat relieved, but still bummed that the poor thing had to go through all that shit, so we finished shopping and headed home. Once the groceries were put away, I decided to try and finish what I started with the work project, so the wife caught a nap.

Robbb called back to check on the dog's condition, and while relating the story to him it occurred to me that the wife's been covered in aloe and lotions of various styles recently, due to her sunburn, so I'm now wondering if the dog's licking her hands or skin might've picked up some of that, because that's the only oddball thing she could've been exposed to in the past few days.

This dog is simply too dainty and delicate for her own good, it's driving me crazy.

The wife and I watched television this evening while she signed sponsor letters for one of her charities, then we broke for our respective rooms for the night, she the bedroom, me the office.

Be seeing you.

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Sunday, March 23, 2008

Cinematic Sunday Thirty

Happy Easter, for all those of you experiencing spring and picnics and re-birth, here we had temperatures in the 40's and the threat of rain all day, so I had a hard time feeling the season. I also had a hard time mustering the strength for the family time that any holiday brings, but what are you going to do, stay home and preserve your own sanity?Incentives Work For Everyone...

Crazy talk, that...

I got up at a decent hour today, looked through the paper a bit and then hopped online to check e-mail and poke around the web. The wife made some little pastries for breakfast, so we ate and started getting the plan together for the day.

The wife is still recovering from the horrible sunburn she got the first day of the Florida vacation, so she wasn't feeling like doing much beyond laundry around the house, at least until the late afternoon when we had to go visit the family. I've been feeling a little under the weather myself since we've been back, with a scratchy throat and some sinus pain, so I'm hoping that's just due to the climate change from somewhat tropical to the dry and arid. We chilled and I watched a few things on the TiVo, feeling guilty for not watching one of the three films that'd arrived from those rental throttling pricks at Netfux while we'd been out of town. Adding to that was the guilt of not watching the three items that'd also come in the mail while we were gone, most likely on the day we left, as would be typical of my luck.

A month or so ago I applied for a reviewing position at a website called Pop Syndicate, and after trading several e-mails I was squared away with them and signed up for a few items to review, which I was hoping would arrive before we had to leave on vacation, since I would have time to watch a few things while out of town. This of course didn't happen, and I've been feeling bad ever since we've got back for not having watched something and written a review to submit to them, but I've not really felt like I had the proper time to devote to it.

I popped in one of those DVD's this afternoon, the recently released Imaginationland episodes of South Park, just to get started on that process. I decided to watch the bonus material first because I was pretty sure that I wouldn't have time to finish the feature in one sitting before we had to leave.

The wife had plans for us to visit Grandmother and the Uncle, then pick up the Mother In Law and go to the Middle Sister's house for the Easter meal. We visited with the Grandmother and Uncle for about an hour, then headed over to get the MIL, who was actually up and running, much to our surprise. We loaded up and went to the Middle Sister's house for a meal which wasn't as annoying as it could've been, but still had the odd tweaks here and there.

The Idiot Brother In Law has been purchasing a lot of guns recently, as he always seems to have a new hobby, and of course brought it up to me at some point. This fool now owns more than one AK-47, which I don't think bodes well for anyone, considering you have a household consisting of an idiot, a wife with myriad mental health issues, and an occasionally unattended six year old. All of this blended together sounds like a recipe for disaster that rivals most Lifetime movies. There's a gun safe at the house, which is a good step, but the Idiot BIL unfortunately knows the combination to it.

He asked me if I wanted to check out his new hobby, and I assured him that I didn't, because I'm just not a gun guy. Frankly, if I owned a gun, I'd be in a water tower somewhere instead of hunting and pecking for your reading pleasure here on the interweb. Oh, and the best part of the afternoon was noticing that he's on some kind of web forums for other AK-47 owners, which I would imagine gets you on some weird government watch list the moment you hit 'submit' to join. Maybe I'll buy a copy of the Anarchist Cookbook and stash it in their house somewhere, just to give him more explaining to do when the ATF raid the house early one morning.

We dropped the MIL off at her house and headed home, both of us nursing headaches. We took some Advil and retired to the couch, only to have both of us fall asleep after watching about 20 minutes of whatever the TiVo was recording at the time. I woke up an hour and change later, re-started the South Park DVD and finished that shortly before 10:00, so I feel like I have a pretty good chance of finally getting a review written and submitted to their site later this evening, once I finish my own housekeeping here.

Trailers for today actually at long last include some horror films, something that's been pretty slim pickings for these past few months.

First, I ran across what appears to be a teaser for a film called Stone's War, a film written and directed by Marko Mäkilaakso which takes place during WWII. Set in Finland, the story finds soldiers beset by enemies they've already killed, that's right, a zombie film set during WWII kids, something we haven't seen in awhile. The teaser features little zombie action, but is heavy on dirty faced grunts and explosions shown over sweeping music, give it a look.

Next up, we have the trailer for a film that sells itself on the title alone: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Undead. Directed by Jordan Galland and set around a production of Hamlet that features a vampire as part of the troupe, the trailer looks pretty clever. I'll definitely be looking for this.

Finally, I'll close with the trailer for Deception, a film directed by Marcel Langenegger. It stars Ewan McGregor as a nerdy accountant type who is drawn into a friendship with charismatic Hugh Jackman. This leads to an involvement with an exclusive sex club called The List, and then the eventual disappearance of the girl that McGregor is infatuated with and the 'shocking' reveal that Jackman may not be what he seems. This may turn out to be somewhat predictable (based on the vague taglines like 'everyone's playing the game', etc.), but the leads are all nice to look at and generally appear in decent films, so I'm hoping for the best.

Be seeing you.

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Saturday, March 22, 2008

Shiftless Layabouts...

Very little happening today, so this may be shorter than usual. Stop applauding.

The Ten Year Old Inside Me Who Bought We both slept in late today, then had tentative plans to make a grocery run for a bit, but by the time I'd checked e-mail that whole idea had come and gone.

Whilst on the net I ran across something that made the rounds earlier in the week ( and that I stole from Samuraifrog's blog, because the other site I found it on was being a dick about not letting you right-click that mother; I guess they think they lifted it from another site fair and square), which is the first image of Snake Eyes from the new G.I. Joe film being directed by Stephen Sommers, who you may remember face-fucking you in theaters a few years back with his film Van Helsing. Ray Park looks great as everyone's favorite Joe, I'll probably fall for this like I did Transformers, just out of curiousity.

Completely blowing off anything useful today, we instead decided to just pick up what we were most interested in (sodas) at the convenience store and some lunch from a drive-thru.

We braved the recently opened Jack In The Box for food, which didn't actually take as long as I'd feared, and though they were out of the bread for the wife's Sourdough Jack, the food was good and the window gal the friendliest we'd ever encountered at this particular chain, but I suppose the restaurant is still pretty new, she still has time to get bitter and hateful.

Oh, and a little PS to that last paragraph: I made the unfortunate mistake of looking at the caloric content of the burger I ingested earlier today, and according to their records, I am probably lucky to be able to write these boring words you're now reading. The burger I ate contained 1036 calories and would easily kill anyone on a diet that includes fruits and grains, something I've narrowly avoided for the past few years that probably saved my life today.

Other things I've avoided: Fitting into clothing not made by a tent and awning company.

We headed home and ate, watched a bunch of crap on the TiVo, several South Parks that'd turned up recently and a few Simpsons as well. The wife caught a nap and I went for a dessert item, talking to Macguffin for a bit to catch up while I did so.

Beside You In TimeBack at the house, I looked around in the web a bit, then popped in the Beside You In Time DVD by Nine Inch Nails. I think I may have been subconsciously looking to hear Just Like You Imagined, since I saw a bit of 300 this afternoon while flipping channels, which might've put it in my head.

came by around 6:00, and ended up watching the end of this concert with us, and then I popped in the old And All That Could Have Been, the 2 disc release from Reznor from 2002. I got to hear my song, as well as The Wretched, which I just love on every level.

We ordered pizza and I got a wild hair to pop in (of all fucking things) the Madonna Drowned World Tour DVD, which I believe puzzled both of the other folks in the room, but I was on a concert film roll, so they could just suck on it, Frenchie. After that, Brian split and the wife and Yorkie headed to bed.

Tomorrow I may try to actually do something.

Be seeing you.

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Friday, March 21, 2008

Fuck Your Parenting (Oilpaint, Florida: Day Seven)

It's all over now but the crying, we're safely back home and experiencing that strange post-vacation exhaustion brought on by any type of travel.

The children had decided last night to fudge the numbers a little bit about our departure time, so that the Mother In Law might get her ass in gear this morning and allow us to leave in a timely manner instead of an hour and a half late as we did on the way down to Florida. Thus, in our effort to have her ready to leave the hotel by 10:30 this morning to allow for traffic on the drive to Destin, for the departure time of 12:00 noon, the story was circulated that we had to be ready to go by 10:00 in the morning.

I set my alarm early today, so I could grab a shower and pack my junk up, the wife was already packed last night, so by 9:00 we were all set. Since we felt no need to go and sit around in the MIL's room waiting for everyone else to get ready, so we went downstairs and had breakfast at the little breakfast bar they set up. I had an omelet and the wife had some fruits and a bagel, then we decided to see how things were progressing upstairs.

There was a luggage trundle thingy already sitting outside the MIL's room, with the Uncle's one bag already on it, so that meant he was in the room, rousting his sister, which was a good sign.

The MIL was all but packed, and the time was only shortly before 10:00, again a good sign...but the Middle Sister and her brood were fucking around, so they still had to get their kid dressed, gather up all the bullshit the kid had strewn about, etc. So since we're not waiting on someone else, they decided to drag their heels instead, I suppose.

Fuck, shit, motherfucker. I went onto the balcony to shoot the shit with the Uncle and wait for the others to get it together.

We eventually got everything loaded on the cart, and headed down, letting the Idiot Brother In Law go ahead of us with their luggage to allow room for the cart and all the bodies in the elevator, and then waited for the vehicles to be brought around. The Middle Sister walked over to the store across the town square area to buy a couple of random t-shirts for someone she forgot souvenirs for, so we loaded up, told the Idiot BIL we were going to go ahead and start that way, since we had to stop to fill up the SUV anyway, and just meet them at the airport.

He circled the square to pick up his wife and we headed out. We stopped for gas in Destin, fighting our way across the traffic coming and going, and then made our way to the airport.

Somewhere along the way, the MIL asked how late we were for the plane, we told her that we were actually about 20 minutes ahead of the departure time, since it was a little before noon when she asked.

Her response, which is just fucking priceless?

"I thought we were supposed to leave at 10:00? Why'd everybody tell me 10:00?" We explained that we thought it'd be easier to get her there on time if we fibbed a little, she mulled that over in silence, probably annoyed, while I mulled this over: She thought it was perfectly acceptable to be LEAVING THE FUCKING HOTEL 30 MINUTES AWAY FROM THE AIRSTRIP AT WHAT SHE THOUGHT WAS THE ESTIMATED DEPARTURE TIME!

Holy shitballs, according to her weird ass world, she was 'ready to go' at 10:00, which would be great if there was a plane in the lobby of the hotel, but the actual airport is a full 30-45 minute drive from the hotel, and she thinks that's perfectly acceptable. Wow, just wow....thank Christ for chartered aircraft, if we were trying to catch a commercial flight we might have to start a full 24 hours in advance and sleep in the car at the airport the night before just to stumble in on time.

We got everything unloaded and waited patiently for the other three to arrive. The waiting drug on, no one was answering their cellphones, though they eventually show up and we started loading into the plane. We finally left Florida about 45 minutes late, and I mentally swore off doing this extended family vacation bullshit again in much the same fashion I did when we took that cruise a few years ago, we'll see how long that lasts.

I found out later that the Idiot BIL admitted to the Uncle that he'd gotten them lost on the way to the airport, which is stunning when you consider the trip consisted of a right, a left onto highway 98, then another fucking right onto a big clue called AIRPORT ROAD. How you can get lost over three turns is beyond me.

Not Our Area, And Like I Said, Who Gives A Shit What's Down There Unless We're Having To Land In It!?!The flight passed quietly, though as we began to descend into West Texas, the Idiot BIL began second guessing where we were in relation to the ground based on the landmarks he thought he could recognize. This game got as old as it could really quickly, and when he corrected himself about what highway he thought was below us for the third time, I finally said "Hey, I really don't give a fuck what highway it is unless we're forced to land on it, in which case I might need to know to get my bearings, so wait until that's happening, okay?"

Once on the ground at the airport back home, I had to restrain myself from smacking the dogshit out of their kid, which is just a horrible thing to say, but I've had about a week of a six year old basically ignoring anything the adults around him told him to do and I figure a nice sharp slap might get his attention when just repeating ourselves is a waste of fucking time. The Middle Sister and the wife both needed to go to the bathroom, so we were trying to let them off the plane first (also because they were closer to the door), and I've got this fucking kid shoving past me to get out the door, ignoring the FIVE adults telling him to stay still for just a second and let the women off ahead of him. I've got my elbow across the tiny area between the seats in his chest and he keeps telling me 'excuse me, you're in my way' and trying to all but climb over me physically because I happen to be in his path, which makes me want to trip him as the women finally give up and let him push and shove his way past them just to expedite things.

Oh, my sweet gentle Jesus, I cannot imagine raising a child like they have, who won't listen to anyone around him and thinks that saying the 'polite words' around his asshole behavior somehow negates him being a rude little pig. If the wife and I do end up with children (and believe you me, a week spent with this unpleasant little shit has been enough to make me consider sneaking off for a fucking vasectomy on the sly) I will be Goddamned if I'm going to stand by and just let the kid decide when and where anything happens when he's that young, because that's just insane. I think you do your children an enormous favor by giving them some very distinct boundaries at an early age, if only to assure that the rest of the world won't think they're a complete asshole once they have to start interacting with the other animals. It's cute or easy to let the kid talk back to you and ignore you around the house, but eventually someone out in the 'real world' is going to smack the shit out of him because it's irritating.

Dropped off back at our house, we loved on the Yorkie for a good long while, she was ecstatic to see us after a full week's absence, and then we went through the giant pile of mail and started to unpack.

We spent the rest of the day on the couch, the wife napped a bit and we eventually watched The Soup and then called it a night, so she could catch up on some more sleep and I could get this over with.

Be seeing you.

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

A Vacation Featuring Smell-O-Vision (Oilpaint, Florida: Day Six)

The wife and I got up earlier than we have all week, dressed and headed out to explore a bit on our own, without the constraint of the extended family weighing us down.

We got one of the rental vehicles and drove down the way to the Grayton Beach area, because the wife had been there with friends several years back, and wanted to show me a little gallery in the neighborhood. We got there shortly before 11:00, which was typically just before anything opened up. We walked around the area a bit, only to find everything closed, and the overpowering smell not unlike a litter box drove us back towards the car. I'm not sure what the fuck that was about, but it smelled as if a cat had suffered some sort of horrid gastronomical failure under the little boardwalk we were walking on.

We went into The Red Bar to have an early lunch and kill time. The restaurant was interesting, decorated to the hilt with a lot of garage sale style 'found' items and the like, the food was alright and we were able to waste enough time to be able to check out the gallery across the street. Zoo Gallery had an amusing assortment of decor items, though we didn't actually find anything that really grabbed us. The wife was looking for a gift for Grandmother, because the Mother In Law wasn't ever going to get out of the room long enough to find it herself, and we hit another little shopping complex that looked intriguing, again coming up empty-handed.

We headed back towards the hotel, passing through into Seaside, where we parked and looked around the main little u-shaped shopping area. We visited Sundog Books and Central Square Records, both of which had a great selection of stuff, very diverse and eclectic. I had to kinda bemoan the fact that I just don't have as much impetus to grab stuff I'm interested in when I see it simply due to the way the interweb has influenced shopping. Everything at this place was of course full-price, which seems just ludicrous to pay anymore, since Amazon will sell you anything shy of a newborn baby for at least 30% off nowadays. I just can't justify spending the extra cash for no reason, especially since it would involve dragging whatever I bought home on that small ass plane tomorrow.

The wife ended up buying a few things at a place called Hooch & Holly's, including a bracelet for Grandmother, and then we headed back to the hotel.

We visited the MIL in her room, saw the Middle Sister briefly, the retired to the room for the afternoon to chill. I read a bit of the Weird Hauntings book I started recently, a gift a few months back from the MIL. It's been a pretty interesting read, if a little 'unscary', as the accounts are fairly mundane at times. The wife lay in bed and worked a crossword and I sat on the balcony for a bit and drank a few beers, then came inside and watched some television with the wife.

As 5:00 o'clock rolled around I started trying to get the evening rolling sooner than later, as I wanted to have plenty of time to write this after dinner, and the past few night's have drug on until 9:00 or later. We'd had a restaurant suggested to us earlier in the week by the valets, which that night turned out to have a 2 hour wait, so we figured we'd try them early this evening.

What Will It Take To Have You Drive Out Of Here In One Of These Today?We loaded up with the Middle Sister, the Idiot Brother In Law, their son and the Uncle in a brand new BMW SUV. What the hell am I talking about, you ask? The resort we're staying at is offering free test drives of several models of the current crop of BMW's, and the Idiot BIL has taken full advantage of this fact, driving around at least two other models during our stay, much like a child with new toys. He was quite happy to press all the buttons and show off the screen in the dash which gives you the view from the camera in the ass-end of the vehicle to help you from backing over the dog, Big Wheel, Asian hooker or whatever else might be lurking behind you when you throw that mother in reverse. I find the whole 'gosh, shucks, let's drive the new whizz-bang fancy-schmancy car around for a few hours' to be kinda cheesy, if only because I don't see me ever owning a car like that, and I have no interest in tooling around in it for a few hours, doing what, exactly? Pretending to live it up like a rich asshole? Seeing how the other half lives? I think I'd personally feel like a grinning rube signing up for this kind of thing, especially when they start contacting me again and again trying to actually sell me one.

ANYWAY...the point of all that was that he had procured yet another vehicle to play with, so he drove us to Santa Rosa Beach to Stinky's Fish Camp, which turned out to be a really good dining experience, then he drove us back to the hotel. He went to play around with the SUV some more, while the rest of us went upstairs to take food to the MIL again and kinda wind down from the night.

The Idiot BIL came back eventually, still kinda on about the BMW's and such, so I decided to take that as a cue to head to the barn for the night.

I started writing this stuff while watching the Adult Swim line up yet again, and then I think I'm going to take time to pack this evening, just to avoid having to fret in the AM. Since the Middle Sister and her brood are in the room adjoining the MIL, her readiness and being packed in a timely manner is now their responsibility in my opinion, since we had to jack with it on the way to the airport last Saturday.

Be seeing you.

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