Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Phone Eater

Just a quick note. I have my phone back after several days without it. I had given it to Renee since I don't want her without one, and she had managed to destroy hers. So now she has her replacement, and I have mine back.

There was a risk I might have to replace mine as well, since she is on her third phone since we signed with Verizon, while Jean and I are both still using our original ones. This time, she somehow contrived to completely break off the antenna (one of those ones that is molded into the damn body of the phone, fer chrissakes). The new one has no external antenna, so here's hoping...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Men Are From Hollywood

Yesterday I wrote how Jean puzzled over how I could enjoy Sholay, but it's more far reaching than that. We just finished streaming The Big Lebowski, one of the handful of Coen brothers movies (along with Raising Arizona and Fargo) to explore the dark side of human nature.

All during the movie, it was clear that Jean was struggling to stay awake, and when I laughed, she stared. Comments like "it must be guy humor" were sprinkled liberally throughout the viewing, which, again, was staged over several sessions. In the end, Jean had just gotten nothing from it.

Now I don't expect Jean and I to harmonize on every film, for each and every cinematic experience to have the same emotional impact. Gods no! This is just another example of how Jean and I can be so different and yet harmonize so well. In this case, I was trying to explain to her what I found so satisfying about this movie. To me it is not just a movie populated with goofy characters. It is an homage to Raymond Chandler, and The Dude is a marvelous sideways rendition of Philip Marlowe, that imperfect knight, if he had become a disillusioned, burned out post-protest druggie slacker. The menagerie of characters from rich California dynasties is a clear shout-out to Chandler.

Anyway, I've made my case, admittedly somewhat incoherently, and Jean sums up her frustration thusly: "It's like The Three Stooges for High Cinema." And then she punctuates this with a frighteningly bad imitation of Curly poking the air with forked fingers, "Aagh! Aagh!" Seriously, it was like watching a Martian try to imitate Curly Howard!

So I love her for who she is, and accept that there will be movies which I seriously, seriously dig, Man, which, you know, are like so complicated, that not everyone will get them. But The Dude abides. The Dude Abides...

Monday, April 26, 2010


Due to a lot of distractions in life, I accidentally got one of the Netflix movies I keep in the queue for the rare times when Jean and Renee are out of town. This movie, Sholay, is billed as a 'curry Western', and clocks in at a leisurely 199 minutes! I didn't watch it all in one sitting (in fact I watched several patches while walking on a treadmill), but I did finish it.

Let me tell you, there is nothing quite like watching a Bollywood interpretation of Sergio Leone's ouvre, with a dash of The Magnificent Seven thrown in, all the while boosting your spirits with whimsical Bollywood musical numbers!

Jean wondered how I endured it, but in truth, I enjoyed it, and am glad I picked it up. Thanks to whoever put together that list of seminal Bollywood movies!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Two New Albums

Broken Bells - Broken Bells. This is a new collaboration for Danger Mouse (of Gnarls Barkley fame), this time with James Mercer, of The Shins. Sounds promising.

Battles - Battles. This is a band which features members of Don Caballero, another band which I enjoy, so I thought I'd take a stab at it.

Monday, April 5, 2010



I'm pinning this post to the top of the weblog for a few days until I have a chance to complete my photo kibutzing. The biggest delay to getting them online is that Jean wanted my most recent photo on Flickr! to be a clue in Renee's Easter Egg Hunt. Since my bundle of trip photos amounts to 221 photos (out of a total of 558 taken), that would have been quite the Easter Egg hunt!

Anyway, the banner photo commemorates our trip, with Jean and Renee posing at the entrance to Granville Island market. You can find the complete photo set labelled Spring Break 2010. I hope to create a number of subsets for the various attractions we visited. Given how long it took to get this set together, don't hold your breath...

P.S.:While not being much of a photographer, I still got a lot of pictures I really enjoyed. The aquarium was a real pleasure, so besides some neat images of Jean and Renee, Vancouver 2010-1884 is possibly my favorite photo of the trip (until I change my mind). You can click through to here for larger versions.

Original Post

I'm gonna put a placeholder here for notes on our trip to Vancouver. When I get a bit more time I'll try to cull through some of our photos and get them up online.

We went for a whirlwind tour over Spring Break with Renee. We actually had to produce passports, though they don't stamp them for crossings to and from Canada. The border agent told me we could get a stamp in the visitor center. Went in and they said "they always say that!" Bastards!

Anyway, we had a lot of fun, and stopped by Seattle on the way home. Now it's back to work, so pictures will probably be awhile coming.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The Return of Sherlock Holmes

I finished The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes last night. This was the second story collection Renee was reading from last term for school. She didn't have to read the entire book to satisfy her requirements, but I did.

Unfortunately, it is also the short story collection which ends in The Final Problem, the story where Arthur Conan Doyle tried to kill of Holmes so he could move on to other, 'better' works.

I never set myself the goal of rereading this entire collection, but was enjoying it enough that I would take my iPod to bed and read part of a story to get sleepy. Having finished with the death of Sherlock Holmes, I feel that I want to get past that point, and so, I'm starting up The Return of Sherlock Holmes. I'll at least read the resurrection story, The Empty House.