I'll come up with something in a minute.

5 Things

1. Here is a list of movies I’ve seen, but not reviewed for in the last two weeks. I’ll even do it as close to in order as I can remember. Donnie Brasco, Scarface (remake), Carlito’s Way, Spaced: Skip to the End, Fantastic Planet, Scarface (original), The Roaring Twenties, Little Ceaser.

2. You’ll notice Beowulf isn’t on that list. I only got about 10 minutes in and then had to stop. I don’t know how the animation looked on the big screen, but on my screen it looked like deep fried shit with a side of hate. The individual elements were okay (actually, some of those were crap too) but nothing meshed. When you tried getting the hair, and the coat to work with the waxy, plastic skin, it just fell down on its face. The idea of Hrothgar being Mrs. Grendel’s Baby Daddy is too retarded to even get angry about. I will point out that by this point the whole “But aren’t the real monsters… us?” thing is really old and clichéd by now. Try something that hasn’t been done for every monster movie since the 30’s you hacks! The fact that a totally naked Mrs. Grendel still managed to have spikes on her feet to simulate stiletto heels though (I skipped around to see if the animation was crap all over), that was stupid to the point of being offensive. Switched off the movie and looked at the making of stuff just long enough for Robert Zemeckis to tell us that he hates Beowulf, which explains why he took a big crap on it. I mean seriously, where does the guy who made Forest Gump get off complaining about one dimensional characters anyway? Particularly considering that has endured for 1500+ years? There was also time for Neil Gaiman to say that while the monks who transcribed the story probably changed it around to fit their views, he decided to use words only a Christian monk would know to twist the tale around. How he thought having Hrothgar being Grendel’s daddy was a good idea and how having Beowulf being the dragon’s sire was going to work is beyond me. But, hey, I didn’t even watch the whole thing because I couldn’t stand looking at the sub-Shrek, not even good enough for the cut scene in a really bad Final Fantasy rip-off animation for more than five minutes. Maybe it got really really good, but I doubt it. The animation was shit the whole way through, I made sure of that. My break up with Hollywood remains in tact, since it decided to insult me when I gave it a small chance to be polite.

3. I always loose it at the end of this video…

WordPress doesn’t like the embed code, so here is a link
This is the video in question.

I know, I should be more grown up than that, but I still giggle into spasms it every time.

4. There are probably a million cracks in the walls here. The new tenet next door smokes and the reek of her cigarettes is getting into our place. Like, a lot. Upstairs, down stairs, basement… it’s everywhere and it’s killing me! Eye wateringly, throat closingly, I can’t go into the kitchen because of the smell. It’s that bad. Because it gets everywhere, and it’s only really prevalent at certain times, it’s clear that there are billions of wall cracks and the smoke is getting through there. I want to call the realtor and ask when she thinks our new landlord might have the new place ready, but we have to give patching the holes a try first. I’m probably just being impatient.

5. I’m feeling cranky and feverish today. I was cranky and feverish yesterday and Saturday too, but today it’s being harder to cover up. Tired too. Like dizzy, no good at decision making tired. Bleh.

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March 31, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Snipers!

I really hate waitresses who grab anything on the table that isn’t nailed down. We went out to dinner, while dodging more sniper fire than Hillary Clinton*, and we had the grabbiest waitress. She was so eager to snatch things off the table that we sometimes didn’t notice things had been taken until they were gone. Really pissed me off as there were two instances that we needed something (a fork and a napkin) only to discover that it had already been taken.

Also, it shouldn’t take 2 and a half minutes of her reading the menu to us before we can get a word in edgewise to order our drinks. That’s probably the restaurant’s fault and not hers, but it still annoys me when just about everything on the menu (which is printed with color pictures for the terminally thick) is read and pointed out to me like I can’t manage that much on my own.

Still, they managed to cook my steak properly, even if they can’t make a chicken sandwich that doesn’t fall apart as soon as a person tries to bite it. What kind of idiot puts a full chicken breast as thick as a steak into a chicken sandwich? The breast just slid out when Hol tried to bite it and she ended up eating it with a knife and fork.

AND… AND!

There was all that damn sniper fire too.

*As we live in Michigan this is very likely true.**

**For those of you not in the know, Michigan has slightly looser gun laws than Texas.

March 29, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

More Snow

Every time it looks like we’re about to have all the snow melt away, when I think spring is just about to start, we get another three inches and the temp drops down to negative 86.

This does not make me happy. I really REALLY want this winter to be over and done with sometime before summer starts and decides to fry us with ambient temperatures that cause lead to go all runny.

March 28, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Make Politics Interesting

Hillary Clinton has really screwed herself I feel. Her hammering on experience has only really pointed out how little experience she has herself. It doesn’t help that she keep claiming experience she doesn’t have. Not only does she lie about things, but then she gets caught in those lies. Take the current example of claiming she was dodging sniper fire, only to have it come out that dodging sniper fire means listening to a little girl read a poem. Don’t lie if there were news cameras there to prove you a liar!

I keep thinking that at this point she’s going to claim “Well, I have experience at being a woman.” Only to have Mike Myers show up in his Austin Powers get up, punch her in the face, grab her hair, yank and announce “That’s not a woman it’s a MAN BABY!”

Then, as soon as Clinton regains some composure and claims “I have experience being a human!” we’ll have someone grab at her face, yank the mask off and show the candidate up for being one of those lizard people from V.

And THEN it’ll transpire that Barack Obama is really an alien hunter from the future, sent back to prevent the damage that the lizard king/queen would have caused if allowed to become president.

And poor John McCain would just be sitting there, wondering why no one is paying any attention to him. I mean, his flip-flopping ass was made the Republican candidate a long time ago. Right now he must be considering either gay bathroom sex or child molestation as a means of gaining more attention.

March 27, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Don’t Mention the War

Let me tell you the truth about World War Two, which will shock and astonish you. Now after Pearl Harbor, we turned around and attacked Germany. Many people draw Iraq parallels here, but that’s improper. If you wanted an analog of that situation, you would have to have us attack Taiwan or some other nation where the people looked sort of like the folks what attacked us but didn’t have the military might to defeat us. Instead we attacked what was at that time, the most militarized country in the world.

Why?

America is, and always has been a deeply racist country. Many Americans are very proud of that fact, and only try to hide it when company comes over. Americans don’t like anyone being better than us at anything, unless it’s some wimpy liberal thing like health care, education, public works, or keeping drugs out of the tap water. However, if it’s something cool like killing people, or hating people for being even slightly different than us, then the American people are all over that like the current president on a line of cocaine.

We heard about what the Nazis were up to with their camps and we got jealous. We were told all about it, and it made the blood of the American people boil with rage. Frankly, we were about to have some foreign power out shine us in the realms of anti-Semitism. That wasn’t how we phrased it of course, were said it a little closer to “Ain’t no damn ferrener gonna be no better at Jew-hatin than us. Cletus, git yer shotgun!” “I’m pretty sure the Army has rifles Joe Bob.” “I said! Git! Yer! Shotgun!” “Yes, Joe Bob.”

We briefly thought about our own death camps, and promptly shoved a lot of Japanese into those camps for the grave crime of being Japanese. We probably would have gone to the lengths of gassing them, but someone muttered ‘But what will the neighbors think?’ and that caused us to look at Canada. And you know, the Canadians wouldn’t have said anything, but we’d know they were judging us. They’d be real polite to our faces, but we’d know that they were rolling their eyes when our back was turned. But then, what can you do with the Canadians anyway? What can you do with a people who would rather smoke pot and play hockey than rape a country and earn the enmity of the entire planet. Some people! I tells ya!

Instead we kept up the anti-Semitic remarks, stopped black men from working in as many important war plants as we could, and of course locked up the Japanese “for having them eyes. You know? Freak me out with those eyes of theirs.” There is a pretty clear and evident racist history in the country at the time, which is why we were so ready to fight the Germans, but didn’t actually do anything to stop them. See, when you know how incredibly racist America was, it all makes sense.

I’m not actually proud of that, but trying to sweep it under the rug doesn’t help anything. Trying to act like Stepin Fetchit (who was enormously popular at the time by the way) didn’t exist is almost as bad as being the white, racist crowds that laughed uproariously at his routines. If we don’t examine and explore these facets of our national history, we will never get over them. We just have to view them in the proper context, i.e. that Americans were, and greatly still are a bunch of stupid bigots who live in quacking fear of a black planet. (I mistyped that, but decided I like the idea of quacking with fear better than simply quaking) We’re going to have to confront this at some point, and come to grips with the fact that some people are always going to be different, often through no fault of their own beyond clearly choosing not to be born as an upper class white kid.

March 25, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Got nothin’

Sadly, I have nothing interesting or funny to say about Easter at this time. I’d like to make a zombie joke, but it seems someone else beat me to it.

On a unrelated matter, the Royal Tramp movies are okay but nothing spectacular. I’m sure they made a lot of money at the time, but they loose a lot in translation. All I could get through subtitles were a lot of dick jokes and slapstick. I’m not denigrating slapstick or dick jokes, but listening to the commentary it seems that there were a LOT of jokes that you kind of had to be in Hong Kong in 1991 to get.

March 23, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

No e-mail for you!

I sure hope no one has tried to e-mail me today. Something went plonk down at WOW’s e-mail server again and thunderbird isn’t connecting.

Happens about once a week or so. If they follow the pattern though, it’ll be fixed in about an hour at most.

March 22, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Free E-Books

My LJ Friend Interactiveleaf told me this week that Tor is giving away free ebooks. If you put in your info here, they send you a link, you get a free ebook.

Baen, another sci-fi/fantasy publisher, does the same thing too.

I guess you can use these files on an Amazon Kindle or a Sony Reader, and from what I’ve read they are DRM free.

Now on that point, there is an interesting article on Gizmodo about that issue. The question being should you be able to sell ebooks or not. There was also, if so how? As a writer myself I have an opinion on this matter.

When Baen started giving ebooks away, Syd and I looked and noticed a few things. Most the books they were giving away were the first and second books in long running series. The second and more interesting point was that for the most part the books we saw were out of print. Baen couldn’t have been hurting the sale of those books, because those books were no longer on sale. From Baen’s point of view, they were wetting your appetite for books you could buy. “Hey kids, read about Doc Sidhe’s earlier adventures, just before the new book comes out by coincidence.” Oh and by the way, you can still read all of Doc Sidhe and the first 7 chapters of Sidhe Devil in website form if you want to. It’s not really important, I just noticed it. I think this is where you actually get the free e-books from Baen after all.

Okay, so having said all that I still have views. I would rather see DRM free stuff that you can move from device to device. I mean, I did publish four novellas and two full novels on LJ (well, the novels were remotely posted PDF files and those links have long since expired, but you get the idea) so I’m not too concerned about the money. I would like to get some money, but that’s a separate issue and my own problem.

I really like the secondary market. It means that people read things that maybe they couldn’t afford if they had to buy it new. I’m lumping libraries in here too, even though they’re free, because they serve the same basic purpose. I like the idea that if you want to sell the book on the secondary market (used book stores and such) that you should sell the physical storage unit. You can sell a CD, or a used book, why not a Kindle or thumb drive loaded with 86 books? Okay, the reason being that we don’t know if that’s the only copy is a stopping point there and to keep thing honest it would require some kind of DRM, which I don’t like much.

That is where the idea of selling the physical storage falls to the ground you see. Maybe some lighter, less restrictive version of DRM can me made that allows transfer to new units and disables the files on old units. Maybe such a thing already exists and I just don’t know about it. I would be interested in hearing about such a system.

The point is that while I’ve been typing away about this, I could have been working on Return or that planned re-write of the Jack Collier stuff. I could have actually been getting real writing work done. Instead I decided to distract myself with this for a good hour or so what with checking all the web sites and stuff. I really need to get back to work.

March 22, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Snow on March 22nd

Hard to see what’s going on here.
DSC09012

Let’s try it with the flash.
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Back yard!
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And the best part is, you can tell exactly how much my hand was shaking when I took those pics!
Gotta love long exposure time and now tripod. Need to buy a tripod sometime.

March 22, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Eggs

I’m not sure if we’re doing eggs or not this year. I think we have half a dozen in the fridge, and I know we’ve got a bunch of egg colouring kits because Syd and Hol bought like 10 of them two or three years ago. The problem is that Hol is sick, with extra sickiness this week and doesn’t want to do much of anything.

Also, there are like five inches of snow that have already and we’ve got the promise of another five before it ends. We might do the eggs we have, but I’m not sure. We’ll have to see.

In other news, Cassini Spacecraft Finds Ocean May Exist Beneath Titan’s Crust.

March 22, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment