Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Verbing the Vibe

Dumb Stuff the Blond & I talk about in the morning...

I'm actually a bit of a hypocrite when it comes to "Verbing".

The family has been having a lot of fun using this particular assault on the English language when referring to our latest little form of transportation.

"Let's Vibe over to the grocery store."

"How about we Vibe up to McCarthy Beach for the afternoon?"

"What do you say, shall we Vibe on over to the Hampton's for some Tea and Backgammon?"

This train of thought led to a recollection:
Growing up, I used to really hate it when people would Verb the word, "Ski-Do". They would say, "Hey! Let's go "Ski-Do-ing" this Saturday!"

I always wanted to scream, "It's NOT SKI-DOING! It's Riding a Snowmobile!"

But then, we had to conclude that it wasn't so much the Verbing that bothered me. It was the Genericizing (tm) of a Brand Name. For some, the Brand "Ski-Do" had replaced the term "Snowmobile" for any winter conveyance, no matter what make or model.

Being "
Scorpion" drivers, this really offended my siblings and me.

Yet (Here comes the hypocrisy...) it didn't bother me in the least to constantly refer to ANY Facial Tissue as a "Kleenex".

I would never say, "Hey, would you hand me a Facial Tissue?" or
"Excuse me, my nose is running. May I please have a Puff?"

The reason I would never say those things is because, growing up, I would NEVER blow my nose.


I would always just suck it all back in. By the time I became an adult, I believe I had accumulated about five gallons of cold-related phlegm in my skull, which goes a long way in explaining this Blog.

The Blond told me that she didn't think ANY kids blew their noses.

Rather than go to work, we pondered this over a couple more mugs of Coffee.

Why do kids Hate to blow their noses? We believe it is because our Mothers turn it into such a Horrible Experience.

Think about it. You are five years old. Your nose is running. Your Mom comes up to you with a Kleenex (tm), presses it to your face and says, "Here...Blow."

At this point, one of two things happens.

She either holds the tissue so loosely that as you blow, the snot misses it completely and runs right into you mouth...


She clamps it down on your nose so tightly that when you do blow, your head explodes.

Somehow, I don't think Phlegm was ever intended to be blown out of our ears.

I'm glad that my mom can't Kleenex me anymore.

Because Verbing Weirds Language.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Oh, Peter: What Have You Done To Us?

1977: George Lucas’ Star Wars is closing in on its release date. A problem arises. The film is running 125 minutes long. The studio execs, wanting to maximize the two-hour turnover in theaters, insist that the movie come in under the 120 mark.

“No problem,” says editor Marcia Lucas, and six minutes of
Biggs Darklighter fall mercilessly to the cutting room floor. The studio is satisfied, and the film is actually improved by the editing.

What ever happened to the idea of a good two-hour movie? What has happened to disciplined story telling?

I bring this up having been a bit disappointed (translation: bored) by Disney’s latest installment of “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest”

It was fun to see CAPTAIN Jack Sparrow, Will Turner, and Elizabeth Swan mixing it up again. The opening sequence depicting the canceled wedding was brilliant in its use of imagery, music, and sound.

As a second film in a trilogy, it does its job of keeping the protagonists constantly on the defense, deftly building up a feeling of “When are these heroes going to catch a break?” (
See the greatest Part 2...EVER)

The ending (no spoilers here…) even had the Colonel doing a bit of a fist pump in anticipation of the final installment.

The problem I had with the movie is that it was simply TOO Long.

At 150 minutes, Pirates could stand, like the good Colonel, to lose a little fat around the middle. Maybe the Blond & I are getting old, but at times, I wanted to stand up and scream, “Get ON with it already! I’m falling asleep here!”

Did we really need the long sequence on the cannibal island? Walt Disney used to be relentless in his stand that unless a scene advanced the story, it did not belong in the film.

Both the Cannibal chase and the Waterwheel fight seem to suffer from the need to replicate the Blacksmith Shop Duel from the 1st movie and somehow improve on it.

Note to
Jerry, Gore, Stephen, & Craig: Making scenes (or movies) longer does not necessarily make them better.

Citizen Kane ran 119 minutes.

Casablanca was only 103.

The exception to the “two-hour rule” was once reserved for epics, like “Lawrence of Arabia”, “Gone with the Wind”, and, of course,
12 hours in Middle Earth”. All of these films, and some others actually did require the time allotted to effectively tell their stories.

But these days, EVERYONE thinks he’s Peter Jackson, including Peter Jackson.
(King Kong: THREE hours and 8 Minutes. OK, Peter…the Monkey loves the Blond, the Island is Yucky, and Jack Black is a Schlep…I GET it already.)

It comes down to editorial discipline. Watch the Deleted Scenes on any DVD. There is usually a reason why they didn’t make the cut.

(OK, right here, I had a ton of other points I had wanted to make in this post. I even typed them in, but then I EDITED them. Get it?)

It’s still too long, Colonel…Sum up.

I go to a Pirates of the Caribbean Movie expecting to be entertained by the action, moved by the soundtrack, amused by the comedy, impressed by Johnny Depp, and annoyed by Orlando Bloom.

I don’t expect to nod off.

P.S. For a SHORTER, more Entertaining review, go to the BEE Blog.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Monday, July 03, 2006

Some Fun

Trust me, for Hibbing, this was a big event...

The Colonel & Family, thanks to some good friends, managed to obtain tickets to the Exclusive Party...

The Ribbon Cutting...I would have shouted, "You Da Mann(s)!", but that would have been moronic, even for me...

Popcorn for everyone, Dippin' Dots for Many...

Note To Larry: The Projection Room was Geek Heaven.

In Theater #7 for a free showing of "Firewall". We enjoyed it.

The Colonel and the Blond then headed south on a tax deductable quest to discover what they want to be when they grow up.

I labeled this receipt, "Prayer Retreat."