03/2012

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Review Day

There are no spoilers in these reviews.

Breville EW30XL Electric Gourmet Wok:
This was a parental Christmas gift, and it lives up to the level of quality shown by my favorite Breville toaster oven. The wok heats up quickly and evenly, and there are all sorts of easy meals you can make with it. We've gone about half and half on slavishly following recipes versus just throwing a bunch of junk in, and it usually turns out pretty well. There was an initial investment curve in getting all the goofy oils and spices that you'd never otherwise use, but they last forever once you have them. Cleaning after oil-based cooking is usually the worst, but this wok comes apart along various seams, and the entire assembly is dishwasher-safe, even the electrical jack. Overall, it's very easy to deal with and a good way to promote eating a little fresher every now and then.

Final Grade: A

Malcolm in the Middle, Season Six:
Comfortably good.

Final Grade: B

Mamma Mia!:
I'm not averse to musicals and I'm not averse to camp, which is probably how Rebecca convinced me to watch this. Unfortunately this movie is so bombastically campy that it should have KOA signs sprinkled in the background of every scene. Among other impressive performances, Pierce Brosnan should be singled out for channeling a singing lawnmower. Perhaps you need to be familiar with more than one ABBA song to enjoy this, or perhaps you should just skip it.

Final Grade: D

Drive:
As payback for watching Mamma Mia!, I got to pick a heist movie to watch. Although this seemed like a heist movie from the trailer, it's really more of a mishmash of genres with an art house vibe: not as weird as Freeway, but not the movie I was expecting to watch. It is gripping, and with good performances, so you might like it if you go in without expecting anything. Seriously, doesn't that look like Jason Segel on the cover? He should star in the parody, REVERSE.

Final Grade: C

tagged as reviews | permalink | 1 comment

Friday, March 02, 2012

Random Chart Day

How I Clean My Glasses

New speech-jamming gun hints at dystopian future
New winged roller coaster "the Swarm" rips the arms off crash test dummies

tagged as data | permalink | 0 comments

Monday, March 05, 2012

Weekend Wrap-up

This weekend marked the start of a wind-down at work, which means that I only worked full-time on one of the two days. We tried to go out for dinner at a local African restaurant on Saturday night, only to find that it (and most of the surrounding strip mall) had gone out of business before Christmas. Instead, we ended up back at Pattaya Thai for various grains in noodle-form.

On Sunday morning, I started reading about new cars, and continued to wonder why the Honda Accord has gotten so massive in the past decade. I'll probably be getting a car in the same class as the Accord, since the only thing an Acura would get me is a higher insurance premium and fancier paint. Give me a radio that can play MP3s, an engine that supports and promotes aggressive driving, and good rear visibility, and I'm happy.

On Sunday, we had my parents over for a late birthday stir-fry dinner. Stir-fry dinners are the same as regular dinners, except that your house smells like beef and green peppers for two to three days afterwards. We then watched the movie, Tower Heist, which was cheap and cute.

How was your weekend?

Computer programmer is 5th most sleep-deprived job
The Nutcracker Croc of Cretaceous Texas

tagged as day-to-day | permalink | 4 comments

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Museday Tuesday

As part of this feature, which I started in 2007, I compose a very brief work (under 30 seconds) inspired by a randomly generated title from an online word generator or suggested by a reader. The composition can be for any instrumentation, and could even be a purely synthesized realization that might not be possible to perform in the real world.

I work on the excerpt continuously for an hour and then post whatever I've managed to complete, even if its a prime candidate for a William Hung Greatest Hits album.

Fluky: (adj.) obtained by chance rather than skill

My Composition (0:30 MP3)

I heard something repetitive and additive when I got this title from the random word generator. I don't do a lot with phase-y electronic patches, and this seemed an apropos place to start. The motive has a 75% chance of getting stuck in your brain.

tagged as museday | permalink | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Memory Day: Snapshots

This picture was taken in 1983 at Point Lookout, Maryland. You can see the single-minded dedication with which I approached the menial task of filling up a bucket from the Chesapeake Bay and dumping it on the sand -- skills I later applied by winning in public school.

A year later, mysterious space plane still in orbit
George Washington-shaped Chicken McNugget nets $8100

tagged as memories, media | permalink | 2 comments

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Review Day: Horizon T202 Treadmill

Back when Anna lived here seven years ago, she got a recumbent exercise bike, which we hoped would be the solution for exercising while watching TV (mainly the episodes of 24 where Kim fights mountain lions). The problem with exercise bikes, though, is that you can just stop pedaling. Over time, the bike transformed from a place to burn calories while watching TV to a place to sit with a beer while watching TV -- not unlike a couch with pedals.

Fast forward to 2012, where there is now a $700 treadmill by our basement TV which makes exercising an easy habit to get into. I set myself an initial goal of walking/jogging/running for 2 hours a week, and have ended up doing far more without any prodding. This exercise has already made me lose 4 pounds, which shows that my metabolism has not yet slowed -- it was just hiding.

We ordered the Horizon T202 through Amazon for painless scheduled curbside delivery and then navigated it into the basement with my parents' help. It was easy to assemble (requiring more than a single person because of its weight) and slightly less easy to calibrate. The T202 is a folding treadmill, which reduces its profile, but doesn't really give you much more space. It's very sturdy, but we are tiny people, so even plywood is sturdy underneath us.

You can set up workouts based on time, distance, and calories, or just go into manual mode and control the incline (up to 12%) and speed (up to 12 MPH). There are also iPod controls and speakers, which I never use, and a heartbeat monitor, which I'm not sure I trust. Apparently you can create long-term fitness goals as well, but all I really use it for is a mechanism to keep me moving for bit every day.

Other than an annoying, ear-shattering beep when the treadmill is turned on, I've found no faults with this unit in the two months I've been using it. I would definitely recommend it.

Final Grade: A

tagged as reviews | permalink | 4 comments

Friday, March 09, 2012

Questions Day

There wasn't any time for writing Friday's update, so ask me some questions. Whether it's trivia, recommendations, hypotheticals, or higher education, I'll pick the best ones and answer them next week.

Ford testing USB firmware updates
Stun, Spray, Shoot! New Less-Lethal Weapon Does It All

tagged as you speak | permalink | 5 comments

Monday, March 12, 2012

Chad Darnell's 12 of 12


5:56 AM: First wake-up post spring-ahead.

6:07 AM: Showered and shaved.

6:26 AM: Obligatory shot of the One Way sign.

7:40 AM: View from my office.

10:26 AM: Home early to wait for a package delivery, telecommuting with Booty.

11:45 AM: Leftover German food for dinner.

1:30 PM: Introducing my new Ultrabook, an HP Folio 13.

3:10 PM: Hours later, after uninstalling a bunch of crappy HP bundled software.

5:15 PM: Home from a trip to the Anal Gland Express...

5:16 PM: ...for the purposes of issuing a stop-work order on this bootylicking.

7:21 PM: Testing to see if this new laptop beats the 75 minute battery length of the previous 2008 laptop.

8:22 PM: Amber adds hair to all of my bags.
Smoking Slovak children burn down the castle
Got a Moment? Listen to a 744-Hour-Long Radio Show

tagged as 12 of 12 | permalink | 3 comments

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Weekend Wrap-up

This past weekend, we took a mini-vacation from our responsibilities and cats to return to Brightwood Farm for a weekend of goat-feeding and mild hiking. Following a couple tastings at the Molon Lave winery and the Old House winery, we ended up at the farm around 3 PM on Saturday. The farm has diversified since our last visit (about a year ago), and now includes a small cow, two new herding dogs, and plenty more chickens.

We spent the afternoon hiking on the "Back 40" and then rolled through several hundred Madison County speed traps on Route 29 to eat at the Bavarian Chef restaurant, a casual, jam-packed, yet classy place in the middle of nowhere.

I ordered the veal in mushroom, bacon, and cream sauce, with red cabbage and whipped potatoes, while Rebecca ordered the pork in a spicy, non-cream sauce, with carrots and potato dumplings. Dinner was delicious, and too filling to warrant a desert -- we weren't sure what to expect from a German restaurant, since the extent of my German eating experience includes hot dogs at Oktoberfest in Busch Gardens.

We woke up extra early the following morning to help feed the goats, donkeys, cow, sheep, ducks, and chickens, and then ate an organic breakfast ourselves, with fresh eggs and scones. Around noontime, we returned to civilization, and spent the afternoon doing laundry and watching Beginners.

tagged as day-to-day | permalink | 3 comments

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Memory Day: A Coach's Death

It was eighteen years ago that my freshman crew coach died from blood clot complications, a month after a freak sledding accident at the Masonic Temple. I was fourteen years old, wore glasses with lenses the size of iPads, and was a junior at TC Williams. Although my grandma had passed away a year or two earlier, this was my first awareness of a death that impacted an entire community. As I tell about it from my journals at the time, it was pretty underwhelming.

March 13, 1994 7:32pm Sunday

Jack called a little while ago. Coach Yeich, the one that was in the sledding accident, had a blood clot sometime today and died. He was doing better too. It's weird. I feel bad about it but somehow I'm detached from the whole thing. He was friendly with me and he was a nice guy but I never really and truly knew him. I know I should feel sad but I don't. It's odd. If there is a funeral service, I'll go to it.

March 14, 1994 3:56pm Monday

After band, there was a crew meeting about Coach Yeich. A lot of people were crying. I felt kind of guilty because I didn't feel as sad as they did.

This was the coach that guided me through a tricky, early year of becoming a coxswain (which is French for "80 pounds of unfired clay responsible for ordering around 900 pounds of rowers"). The role is hard enough with confidence, but even trickier when you're just learning the ropes yourself. Coach Yeich provided the quiet trust and respect that allowed me to find myself as a coxswain, which made it all the more peculiar to me that I wasn't devastated by his death.

My feelings of guilt for not feeling bad spiraled higher in the following days, as waves of newspaper articles, support meetings, and cancelled events swelled through school and Alexandria. I would always look around at the girls crying and hanging on to each other and try to force myself to feel as sad as they were. This never really worked, and in a rare moment of teen dude bonding, I learned that others were feeling the exact same way.

That isn't to say that we were callous -- just that we had not yet had the life experience to process the situation: we knew that we were supposed to be sad, and we saw examples of the sad around us, but without that appreciation for life and death as a motivation, we were insulated from being affected.

This disconnect continued on the occasion of the funeral which took place in the creatively-named New Market (because Virginia is for lovers, not poets) four days later. As six of us piled into a minivan for the two hour trip west, the mood was light and it felt like nothing more than a St. Patrick's Day field trip (and excused absence) from school. We played Tetris on old-school Game Boys and I drank too much Pepsi and had to visit a rest stop.

We finally arrived at a church in the middle of nowhere, incongruously filled with the entire population of Alexandria. As the mood grew somber and I settled into a pew, I began to anticipate that this would finally be the time when I truly felt sad. Instead, as the service began, I became progressively more annoyed.

The story of Coach Yeich and the people he affected played a minimal role in his funeral service. Instead, his life and death were mere Powerpoint slides in the briefing I informally called "How Our Church Will Get You Through This Difficult Time". Rather than sadness, I felt gypped: I had come hoping to be affected and ended up in a time-share seminar. Even as a fourteen-year-old heathen, I knew that something was off about that service.

I rarely ever thought about Coach Yeich after that year, except when browsing through all of the news clippings I've saved throughout the years for no good reason. Eventually I grew to an age where death affected me, but thankfully, I don't think I've attended a funeral for anyone under the age of 60 since then.

There is no moral to this rambling tale -- it's just one of the many memories floating around in my head that deserves to be written down before I forget it.

Mysterious Hog Farm Explosions Stump Scientists
Phone-chasing teen rescued from trash chute

tagged as memories | permalink | 1 comment

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Review Day

There are no major spoilers in these reviews.

Beginners (R):
This movie, starring Ewan McGregor, perfectly fits the mold of a quirky, indie flick, and if you're in the mood for such a flick, you'll enjoy this one. The movie tells the tale of a middle-aged man learning to connect more with his life after the death of his father (Christopher Plummer in his Oscar-winning role). It dragged a bit in a few places, but was otherwise a cute, unassuming story.

Final Grade: B-

Tower Heist:
This movie is just barely a heist movie, and really only serves to give Eddie Murphy a chance to act like Eddie Murphy, while Ben Stiller acts like Ben Stiller. There are plenty of humorous one-liners and jokes to be found, as long as you don't try to follow the plot too closely or expect much in the way of an actual heist plotline.

Final Grade: C+

Community, Season Two:
We liked the first season of this show a lot -- it was fresh, self-aware, and gave off an Arrested-Development-like aura in its stylings and humor. The second season starts strong but then drags down to near unwatchability, before recovering slightly in the end. The biggest problem seems to be plotting -- after running out of funny situations to milk from the perspective of the community college experience, they spend more episodes doing parodies of common TV tropes or plotlines that verge on complete fantasy. None of these fantasy episodes are half as successful as any first season plotlines in the real world.

Final Grade: C

Treme, Season One:
This is the latest HBO show from the creator of The Wire, telling the stories of various people in post-Katrina New Orleans. It is definitely a solid show -- great acting, strong characters, and good music -- but it never really caught my fancy the way The Wire did (Rebecca disagrees, as she liked Treme a lot).

I felt like the show could have used a little better balance between plot and character development, as it sometimes seems like one of those shows where you just wait around for things to happen to people. I also felt, ironically, that for a show which focused so heavily on the music of New Orleans, there was actually too much footage of music, and that's when I was the most bored. John Goodman was great in a role that seemed designed just for him, and the various brass musicians (like Wendell Pierce) did a decent job looking like they were actually fingering the right notes during all of the songs.

Final Grade: B-



tagged as reviews | permalink | 0 comments

Friday, March 16, 2012

Answers Day

the obligatory recapitulation to Questions Day

What computer should I buy? - Evil Mike

Ever since camera, computer, and graphics card manufacturers decided to forgo sequential numbering schemes for their stuff, it's become impossible to compare products without an abnormal amount of research. The good news is that all new computers are good enough to play existing games, as long as you don't take the bare bones version of any pre-built package (so upgrade the graphics card one notch and get at least the middling processor).

For comparison, I have a Windows 7 64-bit machine purchased in January 2011. It has an i7 (2.93GHz) processor, 8GB memory, and an NVIDIA Geforce GTX 460 (1GB). It runs Skyrim and World of Warcraft at mid-to-high settings without any hiccups or issues.

Why haven't you gotten a smart phone yet? - Mom

I am on the computer so much that I don't want the Internet to be accessible when I'm not.

When you posted about how you floss, I realized that I do so the same way. What else should I be doing like you? - Doobie

By shopping at Costco on Saturday mornings and arriving 20 minutes early, I am always first in line, never have a wait, and am always leaving the parking lot just as the soccer mom caravan arrives. I divert water up to the shower head immediately instead of bothering with the tub nonsense, and then get in at the faucet end rather than the far end. I skim the headlines, business, and style sections of the newspaper, but try to read most of the local news. I tip as close to 20% as I can while still resulting in two zeros after the decimal point. I put on both socks, then both shoes. On busy roads, I always favor right turns and U-turns over left turns. I always enter the grocery store on the produce side and work my way down to the freezer section. I don't pay bills online if there is a convenience fee. I open all of the news stories from all of my news sites in tabs first, and then start reading. I warm up my trumpet with Stamp exercises. I try to befriend only winners.

If you could make two of your friends switch lives for a week for your amusement which two would you choose and why? - Mike and Chompy

Mike (of Mike and Chompy) and Ben Ahlbin, because Mike would work 28-days and come home to three daughters, while Ben could just hang out in Vegas and get rich with online coupons.

Which was better - 3 Ninjas or Surf Ninjas? How did both of these movies affect your life? - Steven

I have never seen a movie with a ninja in the title. I have only seen one movie with ninjas playing important roles in the story and I fell asleep (Kill Bill).

tagged as you speak | permalink | 2 comments

Monday, March 19, 2012

Weekend Wrap-up

After this photo, I had a horrible case of hat-hair.

tagged as day-to-day | permalink | 0 comments

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Museday Tuesday

As part of this feature, which I started in 2007, I compose a very brief work (under 30 seconds) inspired by a randomly generated title from an online word generator or suggested by a reader. The composition can be for any instrumentation, and could even be a purely synthesized realization that might not be possible to perform in the real world.

I work on the excerpt continuously for an hour and then post whatever I've managed to complete, even if its a prime candidate for a William Hung Greatest Hits album.

Plushy: (adj.) characterized by luxury, wealth, or ease

My Composition (0:30 MP3)

This excerpt is written for soprano sax over strings and piano. I think the definition of "plush" as "comfortable" caught my mind more than the luxury or ease of the word.

tagged as museday | permalink | 2 comments

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Oliver Day

In memory of my sister's cat, Oliver, who died at 12 years old last Friday, here is a video montage of his joyous interactions with Booty and Kitty in 2003 and 2004. Oliver just didn't care what anyone thought of him.



tagged as cats | permalink | 3 comments

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Review Day: HP Folio 13 Ultrabook

First Impressions

Not counting our "travel around the world and let it get stolen because it was cheaper than a trip to Costco" netbook, my Dell XPS M1530 was the only laptop I've ever owned. I purchased it back in 2008 when my primary needs were being able to play World of Warcraft and being able to work at the coffee table while watching a trashy TV show on DVD. The XPS fit those criteria perfectly with the downside of having a 90 minute battery life (because of the gaming graphics card) and a tendency to overheat and shut down. As long as I was content to be tethered to the power cord on a well-ventilated surface, I was fine with its 15" screen and 6.5 pound weight.

The XPS was also a tank, surviving two frame-bending drops (three feet to the coffee table, and five feet to a carpeted conference room floor). However, these drops led to instability after four years, not unlike an oft-tackled cornerback with slippery fingers. When it started to sporadically fail at turning on, I knew it was time to upgrade.

The "Ultrabook" merketing term describes a set of Windows-based laptops with a very specific range of features and a long battery life (and can also be translated as "a Mac Book Air for Windows"). I researched the available options heavily, and although a second generation of Ultrabooks is coming in May, I realized that I might be dead by then and impatiently chose the HP Folio 13. See the Details tab at NewEgg for complete specifications.

I wanted a laptop with a long battery life, good portability, and an HDMI output for showing streaming Amazon Prime content to the TV. I chose the Folio in spite of a name that reminds me of the pirate kid from Hook because of reports on how tactile and comfortable the keyboard was for a laptop. The solid-state hard drive is nice and speedy too, although you only end up with about 80 GB free after a Windows 7 install. This wasn't a problem for me: I installed all of my development tools and complete MP3 collection and still had 65 GB left.

Look and Feel: The profile of this laptop is ridiculously thin, and looks functionally sleek. The base is smooth rubber, and the shape of the lid makes it easy to open. The fan position (bottom and back) doesn't seem like it circulates very well, but this rig doesn't get very hot at all. The fan is always running and is noticeable in a quiet room, but it has a consistent white noise sound without much modulation. I barely notice it unless I'm intentionally looking for it, and I am one of those people that hears every single sound at all times. Still, listen to it in a store if you think it might bug you.

Keyboard: The keyboard is very comfortable and easy to adapt to. I was never completely comfortable with the Dell keyboard, but I could write some code on this one without a problem. The toggled backlighting is very nice too, because you write better code in the dark. Every keyboard should have lit keys. I can't say anything about the touchpad since I always plug in a mini-mouse, but I like that you can tap it twice to turn it off. The function keys are inverted to default to computer commands (for example F4 is display brightness while Fn+F4 is the actual F4), but I don't feel like this affects my productivity.

Speed: The solid state hard drive makes this laptop start up ridiculously quickly from hibernation or a full restart. It seems no slower than my Dell and can easily handle the level of multitasking I usually do.

Portability: If you are blessed with superhuman strength as I am, you will actually have to work to keep yourself from accidentally flinging this laptop around the room. Weighing in at barely 3 pounds, it has amazing portability and easily handles my nomadic travels between conference rooms and auditoriums. (Booty weighs as much as 4 of these, according to the vet). It does not come with a case, but this Case Logic case works for me just fine.

Power: The battery lasts for hours while working and playing MP3s. The meter suggests six hours at normal operating, but I've never needed to go more than three hours so far. I preferred the Dell power brick more, because it was designed to have the cords neatly wrapped around it and secured. The Folio has a standard two-piece brick with a velcro tie on one of the cords which takes a little longer to pack away.

Sound: The speakers are surprisingly powerful for a laptop, and they're much louder than they need to be. You could probably play music at a living room party without any sort of sound system, although your guests might tire from the lack of bass.

Display: Although it's only a 13" screen, the 1366 x 768 resolution gives it a rich fineness. The viewing angle is fairly narrow, but if I were going to have many people sitting around the laptop watching something, I'd just project it (or send them home, because obviously the living room party has devolved into watching YouTube videos).

Software: I immediately uninstalled all sorts of crap from the base Windows 7 installation, most of it provided by HP without any sort of documentation as to what it did. This took about an hour. In my experience, HP seems to have the worst ratio of useful shovelware on its machines.

First Impression: I am very happy with the Folio 13 and have no regrets about purchasing it. With a laptop this light, who needs a tablet?

Update (8/26/2012): I regularly get web searches for people wondering if World of Warcraft can be played on the Folio. I have not tried it myself, but based upon my other experiences with the machine, it probably will not. The Folio is fine for older 2D games or video playback, but 3D graphics on the Folio tend to have framerates in the low teens or even lower.

tagged as reviews | permalink | 1 comment

Friday, March 23, 2012

Habits Day: Driving Directions

  • I use Google Maps for driving directions. When I look them up, I'm more interested in adding the location to my internal, spatial map of the area. I was great at those rotating 3D shape SAT questions.

  • I do not think of directions in the same way that Google Maps prints them out. I have to rewrite them to start with the distance and end with the turn: "Turn left on Main Street and drive 1.2 miles. Turn right on Elm Street and drive 0.5 miles." really should be "Drive 1.2 miles, then turn on Elm Street."

  • When driving out of town, I'll preface the directions with a full route map, and end with a zoomed in map of the surrounding ten blocks in case I miss a turn at the end.

  • I tend to start directions from the closest spot I already know to the destination, rather than my home. No sense in printing the directions out of my neighbourhood every time.

  • If I miss a turn, I'm more likely to try the next turn than make a U-turn.

tagged as lists | permalink | 3 comments

Monday, March 26, 2012

Ten Years Ago Today

On March 26, 2002, the undergraduate-level Jazz History class I was taking to fulfill a graduate requirement was unexpectedly cancelled, leaving the entire afternoon free. Rather than waste the opportunity, we piled into Kathy's RAV-4 with Mike's new dog, Ginger, and hit the nearest beach, which was only 20 minutes away from Tallahassee. Marsh Sands Beach was more of a nature spot than a sunbathing spot, and had a small sandy island, dubbed Briland, that was only accessible at low tide.

The beach that day was swarming with humping horseshoe crabs, and I built a turtle out of sand. That was also the day that Ginger learned that it was fun to run away from Mike. The LL Bean backpack shown in the upper right lasted me all the way through seven years of college and grad school, and is currently gainfully employed by Rebecca for her physical therapy schooling.

There will be no update tomorrow, as I'll be on a business trip to sunny Norfolk (pronounced "Nuffuck" by the local weatherman).

tagged as memories | permalink | 10 comments

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Back-from-Norfolk Day

The tidewater region of Virginia is very similar to Northern Virginia, except that if you make a wrong turn, you'll probably end up at a military base rather than a Panera.

tagged as day-to-day | permalink | 1 comment

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Review Day

There are no major spoilers in these reviews.

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Season One:
This is one of the free Amazon Prime shows that I've been watching recently. I wasn't expecting to like it, because there's really a finite set of things you can do in the Terminator universe before you start repeating yourself (T3 and T4 were completely unnecessary). However, after the first episode which is painfully derivative, the show manages to carve itself a nice niche with interesting stories to tell and less of a need to adhere to any kind of Terminator bible. From a "going along for the ride" perspective, this is an enjoyable show to watch.

Final Grade: B+

Semantic Web for the Working Ontologists by Dean Allemang and James Hendler:
This book has been my Cliff Notes over the past two months as I try to keep up with subject matter experts in the field of semantic web. It's a surprisingly gentle introduction to semantic web technologies and languages, and couches theory in a practical wrapper so you have immediate context to the usefulness and viability of each lesson. The good news, though, is that you'll probably never need to read this book unless your job regularly involves heated discussions about the usefulness of taxonomies versus ontologies.

Final Grade: B+

Malcolm in the Middle, Season Seven:
Malcolm went out strongly, and I enjoyed the final season as much as previous ones. It's free on Amazon Prime and has at least a couple laughs in every episode, so the series as a whole is good dead-time filler. The series finale was note-perfect for the show as well.

Final Grade: B

Hugo (PG):
We went into this movie knowing nothing at all, except that it involved Paris and CGI. I enjoyed the movie as a light, whimsical Amelie-like story, but didn't think it was Best Picture material. There were great performances throughout, especially from a surprisingly restrained Borat. We didn't watch it in 3D because 3D is lame.

Final Grade: B+

tagged as reviews | permalink | 0 comments

Friday, March 30, 2012

End-of-the-Month Media Day

A new photo album has been added with 2012 pictures. Enjoy!

tagged as media | permalink | 2 comments

 

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