Archive for December, 2008

2009 New Year’s Promises

I generally don’t like New Year’s Resolutions but a new year also brings the thoughts about what new things we might want to explore or accomplish: So here is my list. I reserve the right to update this at any point.

1) Try a new local restaurant I have never been to each month.
2) Keep up with at least daily updates on Twitter.
3) Help my team write really good development plans for 2009.
4) Camp at least 4 times this year. (Hurrah for new camp stove).
5) Try a new beer each month at our regular WAP (Work Avoidance Program).
6) See a new foreign film each month (thank you Netflix).
7) Install a new floor downstairs.
8) Help John learn to drive my car before he gets his permit. (Hurrah for manual transmissions)
9) Help The Service Project become a vital ministry at our church.
and the long shot….
10) Get off the continent.

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Top 5 Comedy Sci Fi Movies

There are so many movies out there and so very many I have not seen. But I have probably seen more than most. Largely due to my screen writing class in college. Our instructor handed out a list of 500 movies we needed to see for the script writing and it just grew from there. (Still haven’t completed the list of 500 just yet). So I started to keep a list of movies I had seen, in fact I complied a database of movies I have seen before I had access to computer. Once I received my first computer and learned how to use excel, I migrated my data from my notebook (ha ha funny double entendre) to a spreadsheet. A few years years ago I began to adopt cloud computing and I now maintain my list on IMDB. If you care to see the whole thing you can go here here My point is there are so many movies and so many ways to categorize and refer to them. John just finished watching Galaxy Quest and it made me think about my favorite comedy Sci Fi movies. And so here they are:

5. The Fifth Element. .

The 5th Element

The 5th Element

This movie is at the bottom of the list as it is not a comedy per se, but I include it as comedy instead of straight up sci fi as it is really a very funny movie. Bruce Willis as Korben Dallas, a former military commando ends up protecting the 5th Element, in human form portrayed by Milla Jojovich, from evil forces. I love most things by Luc Besson and like another under appreciated Bruce Willis comedy ‘Hudson Hawk’ it does not get nearly the attention it deserves. Favorite scene, the airport check in scene where everyone is Korben Dallas. Also like Gary Oldman’s Zorg character quite a bit.

4. The Rocket Man..

Rocket Man

Rocket Man

Harlan Williams is very funny as a computer programmer nerd selected for a Mars mission. There are so many great scenes in this movie it is hard to chose just one. The entire candidate vetting act is full of hilarious moments. The isolation chamber puppet act, the pulling g’s till you puke, when he scream like a girl after being selected. There are those who say this movie is very juvenile, but sometimes those are funny movies.

3. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy..

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

A very good adaptation of Douglas Adams great book. Earth is mistakenly destroyed to make way for a new intergalactic highway, but fortunately Arthur Dent accidentally caught a ride on a passing ship and now he hitchhikes around the galaxy finding a purpose and the meaning of life. Mos Def is great as his partner Ford Prefect and Sam Rockwell is perfect as clueless President (channeling George Bush Jr.) Zaphod Beezlebrox. Favorite scene, the truth gun that makes you say what you are really thinking but doesn’t work on women since they already do that. Interestingly enough two of the standouts from Galaxy Quest, Sam Rockwell and Alan Rickman are also great in this movie.

2. Men in Black 2 ..

Men in Black 2

Men in Black 2

Men in Black 2 is a rare example of a sequel which is better than the original. Secret agency of men administrate the aliens among us on earth. Will Smith is so watchable in this movie as Agent Jay as he is in most. Love Tommy Lee Jones as Agent Kay. And another alum from Galaxy Quest has a great role in this movie. Tony Shalhoub is a seriously under appreciated actor who can completely disappear into his character is great as Jack Jeebs, black market dealer. Favorite scene, when Agent Jay goes to bring back Agent Kay from his normal life as a postal worker completely surrounded by aliens.

1. Galaxy Quest..

Galaxy Quest

Galaxy Quest

Speaking of Galaxy Quest. This movie is so funny for so many reasons. Spot on spoof a Star Trek conventions and washed up former TV actors. Former TV show actors are recruited to help actual aliens defeat an enemy. My daughter Greer says Tim Allen is way better in this movie than the Santa Claus movies. Sam Rockwell is hilarious as nameless crew member number 5. Sigourney Weaver plays the usually vapid female from every sci fi TV show to a perfect pitch. One of favorite actor of all time Tony Shalhoub is also amazing in this as Tech Sargent Chen. I love the scene where they land on an unknown planet as everyone else is freaking out he is calmly eating his crackers and cheese pack. The kids helping from earth led by Justin Long as Brandon are a great portrayal of obsessed fan boys and girls. This movie in many ways redefined what a sci fi comedy could be, funny and smart, spoofing and original. We watch this movie often in our house and our kids love to quote it often.

So there you have it, my list of Top 5 Sci Fi Comedy movies. Let me know what genre you would like me to cover next.

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On my new obsession – Tweeting

My latest obsession

My latest obsession

I joined Twitter about two weeks ago. I know this is not a new phenomenon but it is yet another application, toy, website or service that I or the Mattman has joined, that is generally ahead of the curve. Here are some examples.

Joined AOL so long ago I have my name as a login and with a fairly common name (Google my name and I am almost never in the top 20 pages) this is extremely rare. I interviewed with AOL for job a few years ago and they were impressed.

Joined Netflix back when the only had one plan: 4 movies at $19 per month. In fact we are still granfathered into this plan but we pay $17 for 4 movies. I think you normally get 3 at a time for $17.

Bought the Gen One IPod, with mechanical wheel and all. Still have it and it still works. We also have like 10 other IPods.

Joined YouTube about a year before Google bought them. This was when it was mostly people talking to each other and big media hadn’t discovered them yet. I miss the old YouTube.

Starting reading blogs like BoingBoing before I had even heard of a blog in the general media. Like in 2001.

We bought our first DVD player in 1998, there weren’t very many DVDs to chose from back then.

Bought our first cell phones in 1995 or it may have been 1994. They weren’t like Sat Phones, but they were still pretty huge.

Starting watching Hulu within a month of it’s launch.

Cancelled cable more than a year ago and only watch TV through the Internet. From the news reports I hear this is very rare for our age.

Matt says we are late early adopters. We usually aren’t the one willing to brave something before anyone else has tried it but we usually are well into something before it breaks big.

As for Twitter, so far I love it. I think my favorite thing is it is like a mini diary. Fun to go back and see where I have been.

Feel free to follow me there at LestyoubeJudged.

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What I Love About Christmas

Back from a self imposed post election break on blogging here is a seasonal post:

20 Things I Love About Christmas

Christmas

Christmas


1. Completely redecorating the house for the season.
2. The advent wreath at church.
3. Foods we only eat at this time of year:
* Cranberry Pudding
* Frozen Cranberry Salad
* Eggnog
* Fudge
* More Eggnog
* Christmas Sugar Cookies
4. Christmas Carols
5. A Christmas Story
6. Cutting down the Christmas Tree
7. Christmas Lights
8. Combining the two
9. The Annual Watson Christmas Party
10. My Angel Collection
11. Stockings Hung by the Chimney with Care
12. The Pee Herman Christmas Special
13. Christmas Tea from Peets
14. The Boated Light Parade at Santa Cruz Harbor
15. Driving around looking at how people decorate their houses.
16. White Elephant Party at Work
17. My Nativity Collection
18. Buying and Giving Gifts
19. Animated Christmas Specials
20. Spending Christmas Eve with my family and Christmas Day with Matt’s

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