Monday, May 29, 2006

Summer Movies

This has been the weekend for summer blockbusters. Sunday, I took A & Z to see X-Men: The Last Stand. You could tell Bryan Singer wasn't at the helm for this one, because it just didn't have the character development like 1 & 2. Also, I despise Halle Berry because she, from what I heard, bucked for more screen time for her character, Storm. Storm happens to be my least favorite character in the franchise, so thanks Halle. Yea, you look good in a leather suit, but your character is lame.

Today, I went to see Mission Impossible 3. The following paragraph will contain discussion about scenes from the movie, not spoilers, I will sanitize it so I don't give anything away. But if you don't want to know anything about the movie, don't read anymore.

I have yet to see MI:2, but I don't think anything carried over. Let's face it, these aren't exactly Lord of the Rings. Anyway, the movie itself was pretty good, very action packed. One thing I didn't like was, even though we are following the hero (Ethan Hunt), there were several action sequences when we don't know his objective. One second, he's deciding to go to city X, then it cuts to him running through a factory planting bombs. It was pretty easy to figure out what he was after, but how bout a little setup? Also, I'm fine with suspension of disbelief. I believe I have written on here before about it being okay to change the rules of the universe, but you must follow the rules the movie sets up. I can believe there really is a gov't agency called IMF that has highly trained agents. I can believe that Ethan Hunt can do these awesome stunts and not get hurt. But if you are going to use real world objects, don't change the rules just to build dramatic affect. A defibrillator that takes 30 seconds to charge? How useful would that be? These things are meant to save a person's life in an emergency, you can't tell me they take 30 seconds to turn on. My laptop boots faster than that. I may be wrong, it just seems they did it to build drama. Another thing I'm sick of seeing: someone getting shot and flying backwards. There's this annoying little thing we have called physics. In fact, in one scene Ethan is doing some calculations as a nod to physics, so why do they have to have one scene (no one else who is shot in the movie flys backwards) where someone gets shot and they go flying out the window behind them? There's that little law about equal and opposite reactions. Basically, in order for a bullet to strike someone with that much force, it would have to expend the same amount of force in the opposite direction, blowing the shooter back the same way the shootee was. Another nitpick, why cut down the time left to accomplish the mission to a point where it becomes unbelievable? At one point, they have 2 hours left til their objective and they are just now planning it. They come up w/ a lot of specialized equipment within 1.5 hours, plus apparently do more planning since things happen that we didn't see them talking about. We're talking stuff you don't go pick up at the corner Walgreens. My point is, it would have been more dramatic to say they had 6 hours left, then they pull it off at the last minute; instead of having this totally unbelievable time remaining.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Proud dad

I am very proud of A, my oldest son. Tonight was his school's awards ceremony. For the second year in a row, he won Best Percussionist for his grade.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Upcoming Concerts

Awesome, I just heard The Black Crowes are playing this summer and Robert Randolph and the Family Band is opening.

June 27 at Starwood, tickets go on sale Saturday (May 13). Anyone want to go?

And as mentioned by the photogenic Jane, Steely Dan is playing Starwood on July 10, tickets are on sale now.

I need to start saving my pennies for tickets.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

New Music

I've been sitting on this post for a week and a half, I just haven't had time to throw it out here.

A couple of new bands and an old band w/ new music...

Damone - Out Here All Night. I got the title track as a free iTunes download and liked it. It reminds me of 80's hard rock. I listened to the samples of the rest of the album and bought it. It's pretty good. I don't imagine it will stay in heavy rotation once it falls out of my "New Songs" playlist, but it's nice to hear a guitar solo that's more than 3 notes in modern music.

Wolfmother - Dimensions EP. I got Dimension as a free iTunes download and just went and bought the 4 song EP. Awesome. Take 3 Aussies, lock them in a room with a guitar, bass, drums and keyboard. Only let them listen to Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, The Who and Pink Floyd for 6 months and this is what you get. They just released a full LP, but I haven't picked it up yet. Target has it for $7.99 vs. iTunes at $9.99.

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Stadium Arcadium
. It's not out yet, but I grabbed the single "Dani California" and it's really good. I haven't been really into RHCP since Mother's Milk/Blood Sugar Sex Magic, but their new one is on my wishlist.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Minimum Wage Update

I received a comment from State Representative Susan Lynn, who was quoted in my recent rant on Minimum Wage. It turns out she has a blog. Since I called her comments "idiotic", I thought I would be nice and include her comment to me and a link to the article she references.

Dear Jeff,

I was pretty frustrated by the article too. Please remember, articles omit a lot of other comments.

Actually, I wrote a guest column in the Nashville City Paper. You can see that article on my blog:

The article is called: Public Policy & Raising the Minimum Wage

Thank you for allowing me to respond.

Rep. Susan Lynn

Public Policy & Raising the Minimum Wage

I'm betting she found my rant by doing a "vanity search", but I still think it is great that lawmakers are taking the time to see what the public is saying about them and sharing information via blogs. What's even more impressive is that I'm not one of her constituents, I don't even know where the 57th district is. So it wasn't a case of "vote grubbing."