Wednesday, June 29, 2005


My apologies for not posting in a while. We have been working our annual fireworks sale. Right now it is 50 degrees with 25mph winds. The sides of the tent are flapping, and we are shivering. A guy just came in and bought a $5 box of sparklers. Our Christmas is saved.

Seriously. It’s not all that bad. We get to camp out together (On the Wal-Mart parking lot) in a HUGE tent. We get to hang out with great folks…

And a good dog…

And a smiley girl whose picture I post just so her brother can see she’s wearing his hoodie…

I’ll post more on the comedy of fireworks if I feel like it.

I’m cold.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Thanks, Guys

As Chief Transportation Coordinator for our household, I want to thank the midnight perpetrators for adding at least another 2 months to the life of my son's college car. I frankly didn't know how we were going to hold it together.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Because it's Good to Post...

On Monday, before our softball game, I thought I'd whip up a quick supper for the Blond. After all, she works at a Veterinary Clinic all day, and comes home tired, hungry, and smelling like cat food,(Awful smell, food) while I post stupid stories on the Net and then run off to play Adult Male Life-Sports, so I figure it was the least I could do.

So I threw together a small bowl of greens, and thought I'd mix up some tuna for sandwiches. As I opened the can, I was kind of in a hurry to get to the game. I was already in uniform and ready to go. If I could just squeeeeeeeze out this last bit of tuna water (NOBODY likes a soggy TFS) I could get on my way.

Taking the can in my hands, I pushed my thumbs real hard in the center...

Just a little more...
Just a little more...

Suddenly, the top of the can bent in half. The tuna and water shot out and hit me in the stomach, exploding like a paintball (
Obvious link, so just skip it...) on impact.

"Aaaauuuuggh!" I paraphrased...

dog loved it, but I was a mess. I felt a team obligation to still wear my jersey, so I cleaned up as best I could and set out for the game.

It was a very warm night for a double header.

After a while I began to feel more
unpopular than usual. Guys started sliding down the bench, further and further away. Eventually, they all went and sat in the other team's dugout.

The first thing the Blond said when she saw me was, "You smell like cat food."

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Another Time, Another Place

Now that the initial euphoria has worn off, I guess I'm ready to post some random thoughts on Episode III.

I've noticed that most folks seem to really like the film when they first walk out of the theater. Then, almost like eating Chinese food, an hour or two later they say, "Wait a minute..."

That has been my experience as well. As soon as it was over, I turned to
the boy, who had by now seen it a second time, and said (I'm so ashamed of this....), "Wow, that was definitely the best of the prequels. As a matter of fact, it probably ranks right behind "Empire" and "The Original"." (Being a child of the 70's, I still can't bring myself to call EP IV, "A New Hope". It's simply the original "Star Wars", and that's that.)

Anyway, he looked at me, much the way a potato would, and said, "What?" He took great exception to the fact that I would rank it anywhere near "Return of the Jedi", let alone ABOVE it, and I now realize that he was right.

Besides, saying it was the best of the Prequels is kind of saying Carrie Underwood is the best of the American Idol contestants. I mean, seriously,
who cares?

But here are some random thoughts on the film. Very few are my original opinions, but are gathered from numerous conversations I've had the past week. I do however, agree with them as I post them here:

1. Yeah, it was a good film.

2. I still don't buy the love story between Anikan & Padme. It's forced, (no pun intended) unbelievable, and leaves you totally apathetic about the supposed #1 reason for Anikan's turn to the dark side.

3. General Grievous was totally useless. His coughing was stupid, and he came off as just another failed character of the "Jar-Jar" genre. (Besides, he looked like an old Charlston Comics character. Anyone remember ROG 2000?)

4. The pacing of Anikan's fall throughout the film was good, EXCEPT for his critical fight scene with Palpatine and Mace Windu. In that scene, as cleverly pointed out by
The Barlow Girls, Anikan goes from "What have I done?" to "I'll serve you, Master," faster than the Falcon on a Kessel run. I found myself rationalizing his behavior rather than buying into it. I had to tell myself things like, "Well, Palpatine has been controlling Anikan since he was 9, so his sudden turn does make some sense." Any time you have to help the filmmaker like that, it's a sign of very bad story telling.

5. Ewan Mcgregor, as Obi Wan, remains the best adapted character of the prequels. I appreciated his pain over Anikan's fall. ("You were the chosen one!) I liked the fact that he couldn't finish Anikan off, but he couldn't stand and watch him die either.

6. Over-all, I didn't find the connections to the originals to be as clumsy in this film. Contrast things like Obi-wan picking up Anikan's saber (the one he would give to Luke) and the pretty cool early X-wing fighters to the horrible "Anikan Built Threepio" type crud from the first 2 episodes.

7. Exceptions to #6: George just couldn't resist using Chewbacca and the wookies. The farming out of the twins at the end seemed a bit contrived, and Yoda's & Obi-wan's exiles were a bit too convenient. Those things just smacked of what is wrong with prequels, in general. You simply HAVE to tie everything together, or else what was the point of making them at all? Answer: Don't. Also, why did they have to "explain" Palpatine's disfigurement by having him transformed in the fight? Couldn't his haggard appearance in "Return" simply be the result of years of the ravages of the Dark Side, and leave it at that?

OK, scratch point #6. ALL the connections are stupid. There.... I feel better.

8. I did, however, like the last shot with Owen & Beru holding Luke and watching the twin sunset.

9. C'mon, what's with Vader's Frankenstien bit as he breaks out of his medical restraints? Didn't anyone actually WATCH that scene before it was released? The big, drawn out "Noooooooooo," seemed to be a parody, rather than a dramatic moment. When we were supposed to be sharing his anguish, I found myself choking back a laugh. What would have been wrong with having Darth smash everything in the room with the force, and then drop his hand in defeat like he did when Luke went down the shaft in "Empire"? Much more in character....

10. (I'll keep it to ten) Ok, I know this is stupid, but why didn't they change Luke's last name? Hey, Darth... ever hear of the Imperial Census?
"Hmmmm, Tatooine......Kenobi.....Skywalker....Lars' Moisture Farm? Naw....must just be a coincidence."

To sum up:
Hours after my silly remark about Episode III being the third best "Star Wars" film, the boy simply looked at me and said, with complete sincerity...

"Don't EVER say that again."

Believe me, I won't.