Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Double Standard

I could understand the anger/backlash if a good film featuring actors of color was in the marketplace and failed to be considered for Academy recognition, but the only "outstanding" film in that category is Outta Compton. When there are pictures worthy of consideration, they land on the Award list; when there are actors worthy of consideration, they land on the Award list and are recognized for their achievements. Skin color is not a criteria.

Should there be a industry-wide bruhaha about the BET Awards? The NAACP Image Awards?

Tuesday, January 19, 2016


I like to watch football and always look forward to the play-offs, which is a time for the better team to shine. This past weekend, however, the play-offs were a case of which team played better in some really lousy games. There was no winner, just a team that didn't lose.

The key to winning a football game is a strong defense combined with a fast and efficient offense. What I saw in the games was mediocre offense combined with shameful defense. This was not a case of the better team winning, but the worse team losing. If I hadn't known I was watching the NFL play-offs, I would have thought it was the opening game of a season, the time when the plays are new and the offenses haven't jelled.

Based on what I've watched, either team can win the next round, with no blow-outs expected. And, rather than being excited about the upcoming 50th Super Bowl, I've lost my enthusiasm for ending the season in an exciting, thriller-packed, evenly-matched superior team game.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Petty Theft

We have two collection bins provided by our trash service. The blue one is for recyclables and the green one for general household waste. Saturday morning, I was still in bed when I heard the sounds of a trash bin being wheeled up the street. It struck me as unusual because it was the weekend and our collection service comes by on Wednesday. Didn't think anymore about it until Y went out to empty the trash yesterday and came back in to tell me that our blue bin is gone.

I'm not sure why anyone has to steal a neighbor's trash or recyclable bin because they are provided free by the disposal company. When I reported the theft to our collection company, they asked me if my address is on the bin, to which I replied "yes," and she assured me that they will go look for it. The address is faded, but it's still there.

However, Y told me that our new next-door neighbor has spray-painted their bin ... I'll leave it for the collection company to connect those dots.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

TV Tech

The sound went off in my livingroom TV with no warning and no obvious cause. I called a technician several times and was assured that he would contact me for an appointment to fix the problem, but by day 3 after my call I still had not heard from him, so I went to the internet and did some exploring.

Seems that one trick to try before involving the pros is to turn off the TV and the box from the cable company, then disconnect the main cable from both and wait for about 15 minutes. Plug everything back together and let the cable box reboot. Voila!! Sound appears and the problem is fixed.

I don't know how/why this fix worked, but I'm glad it did -- it certainly saved me some big bucks from a TV tech's visit.

The Revenant on Mars

About the Revenant

The movie is too long, too repetitious, too esoteric in creating mood, rather than action. Yep, Leo does a good job of being injured and battling against the forces of nature and savage hostiles, both French and Native American, but a little bit of that goes a long way. Especially when the setting is big mountains and deep snow.

I feel the same way about The Revenant as I did watching Martian: we must be running out of good ideas for good movies, so we stretch the story by including long shots of the environment. In
Martian, Matt Damon is stranded on Mars and has to figure out how to survive: cue the long shots of the desolate environment. In Revenant, Leo Di Caprio is stranded in the snowy mountains and has to figure out how to survive: cue the long shots of the desolate environment. Leo is mauled by a bear, so has life-threatening physical injuries, while Matt has to overcome isolation and the threat of dying before help can be sent. Both of them have issues to overcome in their “man v. nature” battles, but both of the movies easily could have cut ½ hour and it would not be missed.

A long movie sometimes is just that: long. Once the viewer has the basic concept presented a time or two or three, it's time to move the story along.