Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Got a song stuck in my head....

and it isn't Christmas music.

When I was a teen we had a satellite dish.....keep in mind that back in those days that owning a dish was a big thing (literally) in that it was a good 8' across! We couldn't get MTV, but we were able to tune in MuchMusic, which was the Canadian version of music videos 24/7. This turned out to not be a bad thing in that I was exposed to bands like Glass Tiger, The Pursuit of Happyness, Spoons, Breit Brothers (most of which you have probably never even heard of, except for Glass Tiger). I was also exposed to a band called The Northern Pikes who I soon grew to adore.....I still have all of their CDs, even the one that came out just a few years ago.

The Northern Pikes never really caught on south of the 49th parallel, but one song managed to snag a lot of airplay, and seemed to be requested a lot by guys with beer bellies who wanted to trash on their equally colorful ex-girlfriends. Still, its a silly, but rather catchy tune and the lyrics are absolutely hysterical. Not sure why I woke up this morning with it dancing in my head, but then my brain could have come up with a much worse song request, so I am not complaining.

Its called "She Ain't Pretty (She Just Looks That Way)"

In case you missed a few of the laughs, here's the lyrics:

I had two jobs, I had dishwater hands
And on the weekend in a rock & roll band
One Friday night in my hometown bar
In walked a girl who looked like a movie star
She stared at me and it was turning me on
She said she worked in a beauty salon
I heard a voice inside me say
She ain't pretty she just looks that way
We made a date to go for a drink
I wore my jeans and she wore a mink
There was this misconception all over town
That she ate lonely guy heart by the pound
She said "Take me home, there won't be no fuss"
I said "Sure you got some change for the bus"
Watching her leave I heard the bartender say
"She ain't pretty she just looks that way"
So, uh, I called her up, her father was home
Said "She's busy she can't come to the phone"
I held my breath, decided to wait
A guy like me doesn't get many dates
I fell in love with a model from hell
It took some time for my hormones to tell
That chasing her has been a grave mistake
She ain't pretty she just looks that way
Her ego wrote cheques incredibly fast
But her personality didn't have the cash
I laughed out loud to my total dismay
She ain't pretty she just looks that way
She ain't pretty she just looks that way
She ain't pretty
She ain't pretty
She ain't pretty
She ain't pretty she just looks that way

Just for fun, this is actually the first song I heard by TNP that made me fall in love with them. Its called "Hopes Go Astray" and it still makes me happy whenever I hear it for some reason.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Life, The Universe.....and Richard

I think the Fates are trying to tell me something.

When I first thought of moving to Utah a few years ago, the Fates tossed a Richard into my path. I wasn't interested so he went and found himself someone new, and I went on my merry little harm, no foul.

Flash forward to two years ago and another dating opportunity arrives....named Richard. I didn't think too much of it at the time, but went on one date with him and the relationship went nowhere. Oh well.

Earlier this year my online dating network tossed yet another Richard into my path. Nice enough guy, but after a couple of emails and phone calls the words "Eternal" and "Companion" were being dropped into the conversation. Uh, thanks, but I am in no way desperate enough to jump back into the world of marriage based on just a couple of IM chats. I backed off for a month or so, but we are talking again now and taking it at a slower pace.

I'm still trucking on when I had another surprise this guessed it, yet another Richard. Luckily, this one is easy to ignore seeing as my online dating service is trying to match me up with a man who is into participating in sports and wants a like-minded girl (which we all know is soooooooooooooo not me....and besides, this guy lives halfway across the country!)

Hmmmmm.....think the Universe might be trying to tell me something?

disclaimer: if you are a Richard who happens to be reading this post, my most humblest of apologies, I hold nothing against your name. I happen to actually like it....I'm just a bit dumbfounded why it keeps popping up in my life.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Tis the season for reminiscing

Let me tell you about an experience I had a long, long time long ago that I was still in the somewhat strange state of considering myself happily married, but I digress.

In order to tell this tale properly, lets go back a wee bit further:

When I was little pipsqueak, my mother would have us make homemade butter in a 1 gallon mason jar every Saturday morning. Whoever was sloshing the cream back and forth for that particular half-hour got to pick what cartoons we watched, then the jar was passed to the other sibling and it was their turn to choose and slosh the cream around.

Fast forward a few years ago to a grown-up me. I had an assignment in my college lit class to write about life in Medieval Europe and I decided to make some unleavened bread and homemade butter to share with the class.

I borrowed a gallon mason jar from a neighbor and sat in my living room for several hours just sloshing the cream back and forth. When I was done I called my mother because I wasn't sure what amount of salt to add to the mix. It was then that she asked what method did I use.

Method? I wondered. I explained I had sat there with the jar and sloshed until my arms about fell off.

There was a small silence before she quietly explained I could have made it in about 15 minutes using my blender!

My mother had decided that her kids were going to get at least some form of exercise instead of vegetating in front of the television! Hours and hours of wasted time just sloshing, sloshing, sloshing while my brain turned to mush!

Needless to say, I got an A on the report...and I garnered a skill that still is a conversation stopper in any conversation. "Hey, I know how to milk a cow and churn fresh butter by hand...wanna see?"

...oh yeah, you know you want to!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Pirates of the Caribbean 4

The first trailer for Pirates of the Caribbean 4 has been can find it here

Friday, December 10, 2010

Movie Review: Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Sadly, I think this will probably be the last of the Narnia franchise, which is a shame because this film was beautifully done. While VotDT boasts a much brighter color pallet than "Prince Caspian", the storyline is a bit convoluted and dark for the younger kids to follow.

We open with Lucy and Edmund in England (Peter and Susan are conveniently in America with the parents). Our heroes are stuck staying with their "useless" cousin, Eustace (played to annoying perfection by Will Poulter) and feeling rather put upon. Lucy is struggling on the edge of becoming a woman, and with her feeling overshadowed by how lovely Susan is (a theme that pops up several times in the film)...and Edmund is still feeling like second fiddle to Peter. . . and Eustace is a spoiled brat who believes that he is far superior to everyone and everything around him.

A painting of a ship sailing at sea comes to life, pulling the children into it and they quickly find themselves struggling in a vast ocean with the ship bearing down on them. Being fished out of the sea, the children find that they are on the Dawn Treader, a Narnian ship, and they are reunited with their old friend, Caspian, who is now King of Narnia. They are in the middle of a quest to find locate seven Narnian Lords who had set sail to the far off Lone Islands and are now missing.

Through the course of the film we are re-introduced to Caspian (nicely played by a now-older and wiser Ben Barnes, who also, thankfully, lost a lot of his thick accent) and Reepicheep (who, while voiced admirably by Simon Pegg of Shaun of the Dead and the new Star Trek, left me more than once missing the adorable quality originally brought to the character by Eddie Izzard). There is a blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameo by CS Lewis' stepson, Douglas Gresham, who plays the first of the Lone Island slave traders) and Tilda Swinson repeats her performance again as the White Witch. Even though she really wasn't a part of Prince Caspian or VotDT, I am enjoying how they still manage to sneak her in....if they do manage to keep filming the books up to "Magician's Nephew" she will be amazing as the Empress Jadis.

A lot more has been added to the story to try and give us a movie that flows, but most of the new scenes fits well with the storyline. I am not so sure about the "mist" but it fits by the end. The special effects are pretty amazing, considering budgets kept getting slashed. The Dawn Treader itself is lavishly rendered and I spent a lot of the sailing time all but drooling over how wonderful a job was done bringing it to life. Seriously, if I could find a model of the DT I would be thrilled.

As I said, the tone of this film is a bit convoluted, but I think it is really worth sticking to the end with. Having seen it tonight in standard 2D, I plan to see it again, however this time in 3D, just to see the ship in better detail....that, and I am sure the climatic battle at the end would be even more thrilling in 3D.

When all is said and done, VotDT is not as tight story-wise as The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, but we jump into the action a heck of a lot faster. There are a few new characters (Gail was completely unnecessary), however the special effects are the best used yet (the effect of the flood waters pouring out of the painting at the beginning and then receding back into the painting at the end is very well done, Lucy entering the Magician's mansion (and the spells cast there) are gorgeous, and the battle with the *** ******* is flat out freaky). Speaking of which, let me know after you've seen the film if you don't get a Ghostbusters "stay-puft marshmallow man" vibe for a moment at the end of the film (don't worry, you'll know what part of the movie I am talking about when you get there).

So, all-in-all I say this is definitely one to see, but you may want to keep your little ones at home.

Ineffective Marketing

We received a fax here at work that just floored me.....I will not name the company that sent it to us (though of the 5 or 6 readers I have probably haven't heard of them anyway!) in order to spare them the humiliation.

"Dear valued client:

You are receiving this fax message because at one time you utilized (our) services. Candidly, we have not been very good at communicating with our customers and feel like we've let you down....we promise to do a better job in the future, starting with the following offer.

Phase 1: Prices are going up."

I kid you not. These guys are saying how they were crap in the past but now they promise to do better if we will trust them again (they were completely a waste of time when we used them before)....but hey, that better service is going to cost more.


They then try to soften the blow by saying that if we jump on the bandwagon before January 1st, we can still retain them at their old pricing if we agree to take them on faith that they have straightened out their act.

Hmmmm....sign an extended contract in the hopes that they are going to be better this time around? Who are they kidding?

The effective way to do this would be to say, look, we've really screwed you in the past, we're sorry, let us offer you a discount to make it up to you...none of this, we were crap and our costs are going up so you'd better take advantage of it RIGHT THIS MINUTE BEFORE YOU HAVE A CHANCE TO REALLY THINK ABOUT THE CONSEQUENCES.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Its all in the timing

Well I had to meet my obligation on my book club so I am taking a chance and ordered a book that had good reviews, but that I had never heard of. Its called "I am Number Four" by Pittacus Lore. According to my account, the book is even now making its way to me and should arrive early next week.

Funny then that I should come across a movie trailer this morning for the same book.....again, something I knew nothing about, but now that I've seen the trailer, I am really excited to get my hands on the book...not to mention see the film when it comes out in February.

See the trailer for yourself here.