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August 2007

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Thur 8/30/07 4:05pm #

After almost 9 years of breaks, I just had my last break with my best friend at work. Her last day is tomorrow.

:(



Thur 8/30/07 8:10am #

Toys

Shocker Toys, Who Wants to be a Superhero: Feedback. Nice, but I hope they make "Fat Momma" with donut accessories, and the Guy in the Red Suit Major "Whatever his name was". Those were the interesting characters.

(BTW: I haven't watched the second season yet, I've been waiting to play them in the background on a game night and mock them mercilessly.)



Tue 8/28/07 10:22pm #

Random Non-Sequiters

Another day of light surfing. I’ve starred a few things here and there to look at later and I’ll probably have an ok sized link post this weekend.

Looks like a fairly light comic day tomorrow.

Less than 4 weeks away from the new fall season and I haven’t caught up on the summer shows I’ve been storing to watch later. I beat this drum often, but I’m awash in media of kinds. There’s so much out there, and it’s so unlikely anymore that you are going to run into anyone to talk about any particular episode/issue/movie with. Makes it almost seem like a chore to keep up with it all.

Sounds like the EeePC $199 mini-laptop is coming out in September. It also sounds like it is going to be $199, $299 and $349, with the $299 or $349 one being the ones to get. That’s abit more than the $199 they were touting earlier. Still, $349 isn’t that bad for the portability /practicality of the device.

Can’t believe it’s almost September already. This has been a fast year so far, don’t you think?

No Daily Show this week. Bummer. We’re going to have to wait awhile to have Jon Stewart cover the Gonsales resignation. The networks and the cable news channels are all but worthless for news at this point, it’s very much a bummer when something interesting happens and the Daily Show is on vacation and misses it.

Illusions get people through the day. I like truth a lot. Truth is fatal to illusions, even the pleasant ones unfortunately.

Had a BK Double Stacker today. Not bad, the liquid cheese hides the bacon flavor abit, but overall it was tasty.

Yeah, I’ve got nothing for the blog again today. Hurrumph.



Mon 8/27/07 9:53pm #

I wanted to do a blog post tonight. Then I thought instead I might do an audio post. But when I sat down to do it, I found that, this evening, I have nothing to say and nothing I wish to comment on.

And so it goes sometimes I suppose.



Sat 8/25/07 2:44pm #

Random Non-Sequiters

» Might post some more stuff later too.

Let's Go Surfing

» What is Bacn? It's email notifications etc, that you want but not necessarily right away. Think of it as spam you've asked for and want, but isn't urgent to read at the moment.

» There's some discussion that the Justice League Movie will be 3D animated like Beowulf. That would suck. Computer environments ala 300 would be ok, but if the actors are CGI... the movie is going to tank. Real Actors in Real Costumes, anything else is not going to be the Justice League movie fans are looking for.

» Have you been to CharlieRose.com lately? they have thousands of programs up to listen to free.

» Look some guy's made Heroes Lego People. Cool.

» Threat Level Security Blanket. Nice.

» Wired article on Toy customizing.

» Bizarre miniature scenes.

» 1970s Marvel Superhero Fitness Book. Some amusing scans at the link.

» Sullr is a reverse phone number look-up site. Useful.

» Cars can be made for $2,400.

» Here's my friend Chris in front of a Starbucks in China's Forbidden City. This article says China will be closing it soon.

» Hillary Clinton Nut Cracker. It's 9" tall. If it was 6" Legends/DCD scale, then I might be interested. ;)

Videos

» The Simpsons, the "best of Ralph Wigum"

» Bill Nye Science Guy Illusions

» iPhone Shuffle (humor)



Fri 8/24/07 4:30pm #

Heroes Promo Trailer

Artistically a nice trailer... but this ain't a geek focused trailer. Will they take Heroes away from the geeks next season?



Wed 8/22/07 5:01pm #

The Hope Clock

Have you ever heard Cris Rock's routine: "If it ain't new, it's through?"

The Hope Clock concept I'm going to put forth here is along those lines. Here's the concept: Most people have a "Hope Clock". The hope clock starts at happy and devolves into sadness, anger and dispair, unless, something comes along shakes up a persons situation and "resets" the Hope Clock.

Get a new job, reset the hope clock. Start a new relationship, reset the hope clock. Buy a new house, reset the hope clock. etc. etc.

Something big needs to happen about once every two years. Why every two years? The seasons of the year provide a little variety, but if life stays static, patterns in the seasons become predictable too. It only takes 2 or 3 repetions for things become predictable and since most people don't like too much predictability, the need to shake things up and reset the Hope Clock before the 2 year mark becomes apparent.

So that's my concept of the Hope Clock. What do you think?



Tue 8/21/07 12:06pm #

So that much talked about report that General Petraeus is giving to congress on the surge in Iraq, that's now scheduled to be on September 11th and 12th (see paragraph 12).

Hmm... I'm sure the media will be able to devote their full attention to the hearing on 9/11. What else could they possibly plan to devote news coverage to on September 11th.

Wow. just wow.

BTW that report from Petraeus, will actually be authored by the White House.

Wow.



Mon 8/21/07 11:27pm #

Thought for the Day:

In a totalitarian state, it doesn't matter what people think, since the government can control people by force using a bludgeon. But when you can't control people by force, you have to control what people think, and the standard way to do this is via propaganda (manufacture of consent, creation of necessary illusions), marginalizing the general public or reducing them to apathy of some fashion.
— Noam Chomsky

At the risk of sounding ignorant, I'm not very familliar with the above author with the exception of having skimmed through his wikipedia entry. Seems like I've seen his name pop up alot lately in RSS feeds and what not surfing past my browser.



Mon 8/20/08 7:06pm #

Found an episode of Captain Caveman on Youtube. Hmmm... basically a Scooby Doo rip off. Still a neat character design, and a great yell though. Some things might be best left to childhood memory.



Mon 8/20/08 6:42pm #



Mon 8/20/07 2:19pm #

So... I there was this picture on a Flickr photostream I follow that had the below quote last week:

"We're born alone, we live alone, we die alone.
Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we're not alone."
- Orson Wells.
It's just about the most haunting depressing thing I've had the internet put in my head in a good long while. A Google search turns up lots of copies of that quote but I have no idea the context it was created in originally... but it's a serious bummer meme and bumming me out.



Sun 8/19/07 11:21pm #

Toys!

» Add up a couple waves of action figures, and a trip to Wizard World Chicago and I end up totaling up a sizeable number of toys to take pictures of. Over 80 in fact... so without further ado, here we go...

» DC Direct Justice League of America. These figures came out about 2 1/2 weeks ago. After some so so waves from DC Direct, they finally give us a nice wave. Good scale, good sculpts, interesting figure choices. I got 4 out of 5, Red Arrow, Vixen, Black Canary, and Black Lightning. I skipped Superman, because, well unless you are a Superman completist, there's no reason much to ever buy another Superman again, they've made well over enough variations on the standard costume at this point.

DC Direct Justice League of America
Very nice packaging. They even went all out with the gold foil ink.

DC Direct Justice League of America

DC Direct Justice League of America
Like I said earlier, this is a nice line-up!

DC Direct Justice League of America

Green Arrow and Red Arrow
I was very happy that Red Arrow was in scale with the older Green Arrow figure. I think these work very well together.

Green Arrow and Red Arrow

Titans Together!
Titan's Together! Here's a shot of the "sidekicks", Donna Troy, Flash, Nightwing and Arsenal (er, I mean Red Arrow.) Unfortunately I don't have an Aqualad/Tempest.

Dynamic Duos
Group shot of the Dynamic Duos: Green Arrow/Red Arrow and Batman/Nightwing

John Stewart and Black Lightning
It was disapointing that Lighning's googles were so opaque.

John Stewart and Black Lightning
Although I don't mind the the Black Lighning redesign, I do perfer the original, hopefully someday DCD makes a classic Black Lighning.

John Stewart and Vixen
Here's a pairing in tribute to the Justice League Unlimited Cartoon. Vixen and John Stewart.

John Stewart and Vixen

Vixen and John Stewart
[Insert Flirting Dialogue Here]

JL Couples
Continuing the JL Couples theme: Green Arrow and Black Canary, with Vixen and Green Lantern in the background. The romances on the JLU series was always a favorite part of the show for me.

Black Canary
I have way too many Black Canaries now... I keep buying "one more" to try and get the perfect one. As nice as the new one is, I still perfer the first one's classic costume. The Alex Ross one is nice but she's too detailed to display with non-Ross figures.

Bad Black Canary figure | Good Black Canary Figure
"I'm sorry Turner inspired Canary, you were so horrible they had to do a do over and create my sculpt."

Birds of Prey
I really need to get the Wheel Chair Oracle to go with my Black Canary and Huntress.

Screamers
Everybody Scream! (Banshee and Black Canary)



Sun 8/19/07 11:20pm #

» Misc DC. Here's some more DC figures I've gotten recently.

Cyborg Superman
Cyborg Superman, found at Big Lots of all places. I can't believe Big Lots is now getting stuff before everyone else.

Cyborg Superman

Cyborg Superman
Cyborg Superman is a great sculpt with decent paint apps. Nice figure. I did see the new Sinestro Corp. version at Wizard World Chicago too. I'll probably have 2 Cyborg Superman's not too long from now.

Cyborg Superman vs. Superman and Green Lantern

Cyborg Superman vs. Superman and Green Lantern

Superboy, Cyborg Superman, and Steel
Who could have figured all those characters from the Death of Superman were going to keep popping up over 10 years later. I wouldn't have. Pic above is Superboy ("He who cannot be named"), Cyborg Superman, and Steel.

Monguls
I thought the DCD Mongul was too big. The DCSH Mongul is too small. Perhaps someday they will get one just right.

Monguls
The armored DCSH figures like Mongul and Lex Luthor have a little of that Masters of the Universe flair don't you think?

Mordru
Mordru... yeah this is very old figure, I picked it up at Wizard world Chicago for $5.

Batman vs. Killer Croc
When I got to Wizard World Chicago, as soon as the doors opened, I headed straight for the DC Direct Booth. They were passing out free in package Batman and Killer Croc Mini-mates. It's not a line I collect but they are fun figures and it was a very cool thing for DCD to do!

Batman vs. Killer Croc

Batman vs. Killer Croc
"Let's Go!"

Batman vs. Killer Croc
Kick...stomp...heel-to-the-chest

Bruce Wayne is The Batman!
"I... am... Batman!

Bonus points to DCD for having the interchangeable head/hair for the Batman figure!



Sun 8/19/07 11:19pm #

» Marvel SDCC - I didn't go to San Diego Comic Con, but I was able to buy the Marvel Legends Stan Lee and F4 She-Hulk Exclusives off of Hasbro's online site. Both are very nice figures with very involved pacakaging.

SDCC Exclusives 2007 Marvel Packages
Outer packages.

Stan Lee
Now here's a great figure! Stan "the Man" Lee. Excelcior!

Stan Lee

Stan Lee

Stan Lee
You can just hear him about ready to introduce one of your favorite cartoons can't you?

Stan Lee
Yeah, it's not technically a Members Only jacket, but it's still awesome!

Stan Lee, Hulk and Spider-man
Stan Lee in scale with Marvel Legends... Now DCD just has to get to making a Julius Schwartz figure before Marvel makes a Joe Quesada with Bendis pack-in figure.

The Over Fifty Five!
The Over Fifty-Fives! "Get off their Lawns!"

Professor X, Stan Lee and Magneto
"Now you too really should try to work things out..."
(Professor X, Stan Lee and Magneto)

F4 She-Hulk
Fantastic Four She-Hulk, and look at that, she has a little lawyer outfit you can put on her. She also comes with a nice briefcase, a change of shoes and gloves and some glasses.

F4 She-Hulk

She-Hulk
Technically this Lawyer look and the F4 look are two different eras right? Still a Great figure!

F4 She-Hulk

Fantastic Four with She-Hulk
Bummer her blue is a little too bright to fit in with my FF.

Fantastic Four with She-Hulk

She-Hulks
Still not a perfect She-Hulk. One has the proportions but terible articulation, another has the face, but not the right expression, and the last has the costume but a so so head sculpt and not quite curvy enough.



Sun 8/19/07 11:18pm #

» Sea Monkeys. $15 total for all three at Wizard. How do you pass up buying an entire family of Sea Monkey Figures?

Sea Monkeys
Really nice packaging.

Sea Monkeys

Sea Monkey Family
Yep... the naked Sea Monkey family is now one of the creepiest sets of figures in my collection!

Sea Monkeys

Aquaman, Namor and the Sea Monkeys
And here's why I had to buy them, besides their significance in Comic history... I get to post a picture of Aquaman, Namor and Sea Monkeys on my blog. this makes me happier than toys should. I smile everytime I look at these shots!

Black Manta with Sea Monkey Hostages
Black Manta holding the Sea Monkey family hostage... Can Aquaman and Namor save them?

Aquaman and Boy Sea Monkey
Aquaman and boy Sea Monkey!

Mr. Sea Monkey comes home early from the Office
Oh No... Mr. Sea Monkey has come home early from Work.

Aquaman and Mrs. Sea Monkey
Mrs. Sea Monkey just can't resist Aquaman, it's like she feels compelled to be with him.
(Yes... I know I' seriously disturbed....)



Sun 8/19/07 11:17pm #

» Underdog - There's no need to fear... Underdog is here! I actually made an Underdog costume a couple years ago for Halloween, and spent the entire day rhyming and talking in his voice... it was fantastic! (No I haven't and do not plan to see the Underdog movie... the sooner that's forgot the better.)

Underdog
There's no need to fear, Underdog is here.

When criminals in this world appear,
And break the laws that they should fear,
And frighten all who see or hear,
The cry goes up both far and near for
Underdog,
Underdog,
Underdog,
Underdog.

Underdog

Speed of lightning, roar of thunder,
Fighting all who rob or plunder
Underdog, Underdog.

When in this world the headlines read
Of those who's hearts are filled with greed
And rob and steal from those in need.
To right this wrong with blinding speed goes
Underdog,
Underdog,
Underdog,
Underdog.

Underdog
Speed of lightning, roar of thunder,
Fighting all who rob or plunder
Underdog, Underdog.

Underdog and Krypto
Look it's Underdog and Krypto!

Underdog and Krypto

Underdog and Krypto

Underdog and Superman
"So, parody laws, that's how you get away with ripping me off?"
(Underdog is almost in 6" Scale... certainly close enough for diplay with Superman!)

Dynomutt and Underdog
Dynomutt and Underdog!



Sun 8/19/07 11:16pm #

» Tomb Raider - I haven't spent much time playing the game and I haven't seen the movies, but this female "Indianna Jones" is just a great character design. I got a good deal on her at Wizard too.

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Laura and Abbey
Laura Croft and Abbey Chase. (no idea why Abbey looks so simpsony yellow... trick of the light it would appear as she's much more realisticly colored in person.

Laura and Abbey
Just a couple of "Danger Girls"



Sun 8/19/07 11:15pm #

» Captain Caveman - I was very bummed not to have found Captain Caveman at Toys R Us this past year. He was near the top of my list to find at Wizard World and hooray! I did.

Captain Caveman
I remember really liking Captain Caveman as a kid, but I can't tell you much about the show other than he used to pick-up things alot. I do remember the scream... "CaaPppTaiN CAaaaVVVe-Maaaan!"

Captain Caveman
I'm going to have to see if I can find any of his cartoons or clips on the internet...

Saturday Morning Cartoons!
I sooooo much want someone to make all the Hanna Barberra Superfriends and I need to hunt down several of the other Hanna Barberra Superheroes that have been made.... (above: Thundar the Barbarian, Captain Caveman and Blue Falcon)

Captain Caveman and Thundar
I was very happy that Captain Caveman came off his base and could stand with other figures (this was a disapointment with Hong Kong Fooey)

Captain Caveman

Captain Caveman

Captain Caveman
"CaaPppTaiN CAaaaVVVe-Maaaan!"

Captain Caveman

That's all the toy pics for now... (ate up a pretty good chuck of my Sunday too.)
See you in the aisles.



Sat 8/18/07 6:55pm #

Marvel Legends Hulk Wave

Free Image Hosting by FreeShare.us Free Image Hosting by FreeShare.us Marvel Legends Hulk Wave includes Doc Samson, Valkyrie, Hulk, Son of Hulk, Red King and World War Hulk. Nice.

DC Direct Showcase Wave

Free Image Hosting by FreeShare.us DC Direct Showcase Figures Carmine Infantino Batgirl, Curt Swan Superman,Joe Kubert Hawkman, Jonah Hex. Yet another Hawkman figure. That's a suprise. Probably the only one I'll get is the Jonah Hex figure.



Sat 8/18/07 2:18pm #

Let's Go Surfing

» Voltron to be a movie

New Regency is looking to assemble its own giant robot movie.

The 20th Century Fox-based production entity is close to a deal with the Mark Gordon Co. to adapt "Voltron: Defender of the Universe" into a live-action film.

Gordon has been developing the pic, based on the popular 1980s Japanese animated TV series, comicbooks and toy line, with Justin Marks penning the script.

» Mattel DC Universe Action Figures of Red Tornado, Gorilla Grodd, Firestorm(s), Harley Quinn, Black Manta, Superman Red and Blue, and Aquaman(s).

Not sure which of these I'd get since most would be doubles. Red Tornado seems like a definite since the DCD version I have isn't that great and the Alex Ross one is "too nice" to place with the other more comic styled figures. Superman Red and Blue maybe, sine I don't have those, Black Manta probably, because well you can't have enough Black Manta Figures. Hmm...

» Windows Mouse driver rotator. I haven't tried this yet, but looks like it might be useful if you want to turn you monitor sideways or if you just want to mess with someone's machine abit.

» Recent Wii firmware update allows use of USB keyboard in some channels. Cool.

» DC to launch stylized kids comics not based off of cartoons. Magic of Shazam and Tiny Titans. Both look interesting. They certainly couldn't sell any worse than the kids fare out there from DC now. Nice to see them trying something new. ('course they are also doing a horrendous comic/ad version for the chunky Superfriends toys.. but two out of three new books look good.)

Free Image Hosting by FreeShare.us » Animator Genndy Tartakovsky is writing an out of continuity Powerman series which will be a super satirical look at 1970s Marvel Comics. Tartakovsky is the writer Illustrator behind Dexter's Laboratory, Samurai Jack and Star Wars Clone Wars.

» Live concert recordings being sold to fans on USB sticks as you leave the venue. Sounds like a cool idea.

» Look it's an online Etch A Sketch. You work it with your arrow keys. It even shakes to clear the image. Nice.

Free Image Hosting by FreeShare.us

» Sci-Fi has canceled PainKiller Jane I've only seen maybe three episodes so far, but I have the rest stacked up to watch on a rainy day sometime. Thought it was starting out as an ok series, not great but good. At least gets to it's finale though.

Free Image Hosting by FreeShare.us » Chewbacca Dog from Cuteoverload

» Tim Burton's wife is expecting a second child for the couple. Nothing interesting about that, but it got me thinking if Tim Burton is your dad, you probably sleep with the light on after storytime.

» NECA Castlevania Action Figures Due in September.



Sat 8/18/07 2:17pm #

Videos

» In case you haven't seen this yet, this is an interview with Dick Cheney in 1994. Very interesting given today's situation in Iraq. Aparently they did know the war was going to happen this way.

» Eric Schmidt (Google) talks Web 3.0.

» Rep. Shiela Jackson Lee on the recent FISA bill.

» ItsJustSomeRandomGuy: After Hours #5

» President Bush press conference on the Zombie threat. (Pretty good, WATCH IT!)



Fri 8/17/07 4:25pm #

Blogging about Google

If you type: Karath into Google, my blog pages come up as the second and third links. K-m Karath comes up first. K-m Karath was the little girl in The Sound of Music. K-m Karath has a Google pagerank of 4 out of 10. I have a Google pagerank of 3 out of 10. One measly little point is all I probably need to be the supreme Karath in Google.

One measly little point probably and then I can type: Karath into Google, hit the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button and then I'll go directly to my site.

Sigh.

(the "-" above replaces a "y"... I ain't typing her name and helping her get to 5 ;)

And yes it is Friday, it's beautiful outside and I want to leave my cube now... thank you.



Fri 8/17/07 8:50am #

If you are going to GenCon this weekend, stop into the Palladium booth and say hi to friends Adam and Comfort!



Fri 8/17/07 2:38am #

Grand Central

I got a beta invite to Google's New Grand Central phone service. Neat! They give you a real phone number that people can call which Google will then transfer the call to your landline or cell (or any number or group of numbers). There's all sorts of other spiffy features too, like the abillity to embed your voicemails in your blog as below:

You can press the button below to leave a message from your phone. (Google will call the phone number you provide and connect you to the voicemail.)



Thurs 8/16/07 8:45pm #

Blogging about blogging

Fixed some of my CSS. The site should look a little more straighted up in Internet Explorer now. If you are looking at this site in Firefox, you might not notice much difference other than I dropped the page background image.

I changed the http://chris-karath.com/ main page. Go take a look at that, there's a neat little flash thingamabob that has some pictures you can move around etc.

If you are linking to this site. Continue to use http://chris-karath.com/blog/bloghome.html that's the quickest way to the most current page.

Still haven't had much opportunity to blog last weeks con and the new toy pictures. I should get to those by the weekend now.



Mon 8/13/08 1:15pm #

Sad News for Comic Fans

Mike Wieringo has died of a Heart Attack at age 44.



Mon 8/13/08 7:20am #

Karl Rove Resigns. What a lovely Monday this is turning out to be for the country. 'course, probably nothing to prevent him from "consulting" for the President for the rest of the term. And then there's the possiblillity that he will help to run some other Republican's campaign? *sigh* But "Rove Resigns" is still a nice headline.



Sun 8/12/08 1:44pm #

Random Non-sequiters

Wizard World

I had intended to get up some pictures of Wizard World this weekend but it looks like I'll wait a little bit on those. Of course there is already a ton of stuff out there on the nets in the usual places on the topic, and I'm not sure my media card has much on it that hasn't popped up elsewhere, but I'll probably add my pics to the collective internet conscienceness soon.

As far as the con itself goes. Unless they do some huge reinvention, I think this format is going to die in another couple years. It would appear that there are now just too many cons and this one in particular seems way to close to San Diego Comic Con. I've went the last four years, and this was the smallest one yet.

The main killer for this con is the internet. Pictures show up on the net within 15 minutes of a happening as do word by word descriptions and in some cases audio and video of the panels. They need more interactive spectacle at this con. Trade booths and boring hotel style conference rooms ain't adding much to what you can see on the net.

Ebay is also much more efficient for finding the trinkets and toys, although I'll grant the con preeminence with finding back issues and trades at discount prices, when you take into account, gas and admission with all the other travel costs, even that is probably a wash.

Even Artist alley, while it's fun to meet some artists in person, it's much easier to talk with them through their forums and blogs. The con isn't adding much to the process.

These things need more organized spectacle and event if they are going to last in the internet age.

I was on the bubble as to whether or not to go this year, and I had a good time but like friend Jeff, I will probably skip next year.

Anyway, some pics of the event and merch purchased still to come.

Stardust

I saw Stardust last night. It was a good movie, I enjoyed it. It's along the lines of Princess Bride, but unfortunately with less humor and probably a little less rewatchable/quoteable in the future. But take that as more of a compliment to Princess Bride than a slight against Stardust. I don't really have that much more to say about Stardust really, other than it was light fun and a fairly quick moving 2 hours. It's worth seeing in the theater, but you could wait the 3 months to see it on DVD too. Do see though.

Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles

I saw the Pilot episode of this series last week. I thought it was very good. It captured the sensibilities of the movies very well. I'm looking forward to seeing more episodes and putting it on my weekly watch list.

Chuck

Also saw the Chuck Pilot last week. It combines the most tedious cliched aspects of 40 Year Old Virgin, What About Brian, Alias, and Automan. It was lame, and I won't be watching any other episodes, except possibly by accident since it's going to come on before Heroes.

...that's all for now

Working on lots of toy pics and I'll go through my "starred" rss feed items for last week to post soon too. Good night internets.



Sat 8/11/07 3:48pm #

Not quite ready for Prime Time

I have a Vonage telephone number. Although I use it very infrequently, I really like the service. Anytime I get a call on it they send an email, with the message attached as a wav file, since I check my email from my cellphone, this is a very useful thing for me. This weekend they have started a visual voicemail trial, whereby in addition to the wav file attachment they also transcribe via voice recognition the message and send it to your email as text.

Below is the message they transcribed. I left the message and I have no idea what this means.

It's. In the past also bought edge. Tags 2 boys. They show all boys emails just I wanna see how good actually trends right. Is out what it must be more saying. Wonder how long ago not you can leave it back i can only go broadband. Use. then exit. the the the netgate jim ended up down. Goodbye.

For the record, I have lived in Michigan my entire life, and have "no accent" at all. I pretty much speak plain vanilla midwestern english.

Interestingly they don't even get Vonage correct ("bought edge") and they somehow turn voicemail into "boys emails" Either they or I must have problems with V vs B?

I think it's them.



Mon 8/5/07 10:20am #

• DCU Direct to DVD New Frontier Adaption. This is a Justice League America Nostalgia piece with updated modern sensibillities, set in the 60s (when the current incarnations of the characters came to prominence). The maxi-series/graphic novel, was really good. This looks to be very good also.

The only thing I'm not sure will work right is that this moive while featuring the 60s is most likely going to look like very modern animattion. The story and setting will probably be strong enough to overcome, but It's hard to imagine from the clips seen that the animation will "add" to the story.

I'll be the first in line to get it regardless though.



Sun 8/5/07 11:05pm #

I Think I Love My Wife

Just watched Cris Rock's I Think I Love My Wife, another film that was not as lighthearted as the trailers. The movie plays as a more reserved\older\quieter take on Cris Rock's relationship humor, you can definitely feel Louis CK's influence on the film (he's listed as a co-writer.) Basically this movie is Last Kiss plus another 7 years. Where First Kiss does a What About Brian style take on the cast structure, throwing 4 different types of guys of the same age but different stages into the mix, I think I Love My Wife completely focus' on Rock's character: a suburban married man with two young kids.

Both movies never really deal with their premises, the quiet desperation of the domesticated American male, other than to put the characters predicaments on display. Both movies out of nowhere in the end of the 3rd act for no plot established reason really explain their endings.

Watched together in a single day, they're sort of depressing. Separately, however, I reccomend both, but wait until it's raining outside, don't watch them with a spouse or a girlfriend and plan something fun to do after watching them to cheer yourself back up, 'cause otherwise, you might bum yourself out.



Sun 8/5/07 8:29pm #

Last Kiss

So, I just watched Zach Braff’s Last Kiss film. Wow, that was not the lighthearted film I remember them advertising. I did, however, think it was a good movie. In a lot of ways it feels like Braff, in that film, made a more serious sequel to Garden State circa 7 years in the future of that movie.

Garden State I really enjoyed. It seemed a very honest film to me. Last Kiss seemed slightly less so. You get about two thirds into the movie and the film really seems pointed in an interesting direction, and then it gets pulled back to standard Hollywood, in plot, if not in tone. I really would have liked to see Braff’s character tackle the psychology behind the emotions of the “betrayal” (for lack of a better word.) of Braff’s character’s girlfriend. There’s a touch of tackling that topic in the scene with Braff’s character’s girlfriend and her Mother. But they drop the thread. Too bad, if they were going to make that sullen of a film anyway, I would have liked to have seen them find a way to follow that story direction.

Synergy

Installed a new version of ‘Synergy’ on my Linux and PC box. Synergy is a cursor/keyboard sharing software that when running on your various machines: PC/Mac/Linux will allow your cursor to move from screen to screen across multiple machines. Your keyboard input then follows to whichever machine has the cursor focus. Clipboard text contents also travel with your cursor focus. It’s a neat program.

Popularity of Action Figure Brands

It’s interesting to note that when I have posted links to new action figure photos on Toybuzz that the hit counts follow roughly the popularity of the Publishers. Basically Marvel gets about 30% to 40% more hits than DC and DC gets about 1.5 times the traffic of the Indy figures.

Power

I’ve been thinking a lot about power, allegiance and hierarchy this past week. I actually wanted to write a couple paragraphs on the topic this weekend, but I haven’t exactly wrapped my head around a hook to talk about the topic. What makes people follow rules and other people? Why do people, even in the absence of fear, do things that should not be done or are not even in their interests? These aren’t questions I’m asking. I actually have some pretty well formulated thoughts on the matter, but I just don’t have the hook on how to present those thoughts in a few paragraphs yet.

Millionaires

There is an article in the New York Times this weekend on millionares that don’t feel rich. The article is getting some link play around the web at many of the usual aggregators like Metafilter as well as others.

Most of the comments I have seen are of the “let me get my violin” variety, but I think this is an interesting topic beyond that.

You have people that have accomplished everything our society has told them to do. They have followed the roadmap: School, job, family, house, nice stuff, religion, money etc., yet they aren’t happy with it. They haven’t given up on the direction however; they just believe they need to keep on the road a little longer. The masses on Metafilter above mostly attack these poor millionaires. The millionaires are already further down the road than the Metafilter masses plan on being able to go. Both believe in the destination but the masses are upset because they see the millionaires as having already arrived at the destination. If the millionaires aren’t happy then that really calls into question the map, because the millionaires should have reached happy already, according to the map. If you believe in the map the only logical conclusion is that the ‘article millionaires’ are idiots that are doing something wrong.

Both still believe: “Do everything you are supposed to do: Job, house, family, religion, make lots of money etc. and you’ll be happy” is the way it’s supposed to work. If they give up on that idea, what do they replace it with? Where do they lay their highway to if not to the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow?

If money, work, family and religion aren’t the answers? If they are not the way to bliss then what is?

It’s not a good question to ask. I can see why people don’t want to ask it. If you believed you were on a road for 10, 15, 20 years and then it started to look like you were going in the wrong direction after all that time, man, I could see how frustrated and angry and irritated that could make someone, You can read that in the tone of the Metafilter people.

If you are farther back on the road like the Metafilter people and you find out that the people way up the road who are going to the same place as you with the same map, turn out to be lost, that would be indeed be very bothersome, if you really believe in the direction of the map. That’s hope crushing stuff when you think about it, cause if you are that far down the road, you can’t turn around right? And if so, where else would you go?

If you ask me though, the map seems to be the issue (or possibly the hope?, or maybe that road/map/direction thing isn’t a very good metaphor? Maybe that’s the problem?).



Sat 8/4/07 10:54pm #

Random Non-Sequiters

» Looks like Asus has pushed back the release of the EeePC/$199 Laptop until mid-September/Early October Bummer.

Let's Go Surfing

» Something just doesn't feel right to me about officially sponsored Army video games.

Working hand-in-hand with U.S. Army Subject Matter Experts and with the full cooperation of units of the U.S. Army, the coin-operated AMERICA’S ARMY is a realistic and engaging game centered on exciting training exercises, and includes a significant amount of authentic Army videos and other information designed to immerse the player in the Army culture.

» Rotary Telephone Direct Dial service PSA.

» Dark Knight Joker Semi Photo

» Some Simpson Drawings from Adam and Comfort from last week.

» A Samsung Camera that also doubles as a Personal Media Player.

» There is a tremendous ammount of water on this planet. Neat planet pics.

» Let's Blow this Thing: A Star Wars Musical. Very nice.



Thurs 8/2/07 11:40pm #

Toys

» As mentioned earlier, I picked up the entire 1st wave of Indy Legends figures today. Excellent details, paint apps and articulation. Random characters, Nice set. Lots of pictures so let's get to it.

Indy Legends
Group Package Shot

Indy Legends Indy Legends Indy Legends Indy Legends Indy Legends Indy Legends Indy Legends
Back packages with synopsis

Indy Legends
Witchblade's packaging is taller than the others to accomadate The Pitt torso.

Pitt some assembly required

Pitt

Pitt
One of the nicest Build-a-Figures yet, The Pitt.

Indy Legends
The whole group.

Hulk, Pitt, Changeling

Pitt and Hulk

Pitt and Hulk
Hulk may be the strongest there is but Pitt has him beat in the size dept.

Pitt, Giant-Man and Sentinel

Savage Dragon
Savage Dragon is one of my favorites of this wave.

Savage Dragon
I like the new figure better than the McFarlane one.

Savage Dragon

Savage Dragon and Hulk
Green Power!

Savage Dragon

Super Patriot, Bane, Captain America and Punisher
Super Patriot is another very well done figure.

Super Patriot, Captain America and Punisher

Super Patriot, Captain America and Punisher
Captain America, Super Patriot and the Punisher.

Claws
Claws

Ripclaw and Wolverine
Ripclaw and Wolverine

Frankenstein and Madman
Madman is my favorite character of this wave.

Frankenstein meets Madman
Frankenstein's Monster and Frank Einstein.

Judge not
Judge Dread's leg knife and leg gun come out of their holsters. There is a third holdster on is back for the other gun too.

Judges

Judges

I am the Law!
I am the Law!

Scarlet Witch and Witchblade
Witchery

Witchblade

Witchblade
Witchblade, probably my least favorite of the set.

• A week ago I put up pictures of the Legendary Heroes Conan and Body Bag Two-Packs. So take a look at those too if you haven't seen them yet.



Thurs 8/2/07 12:46pm #

Toys!

You have new Picture Mail!

Thanks to the heads up from CaptainRon (and Jakey-Jake). I snagged an entire set of Indy Legends today! Lots of pics up later today or tomorrow! Fantastic!



Thurs 8/2/07 11:15am #

Let's Go Surfing

• Pulo from HBO's Rome is going to be The Punisher. Wow, becasuse of that, now I'm going to have to see The Punisher, who would have figured.

Pixel Charts are the new Pie Charts, claims a blogger. Well, I don't know about that since up until now I've never seen one, but I could see some interesting web uses for the format, and i might want make some of these in th future.

Mountain Dew Halo 3 Drink. With can picture.

FlexPetz, it's like Netflix but with pets. I really haven't spent much time looking around the site, and it seems like the sort of thing that will turn out to be a big hoax, but you got to give them points fro coming up with an absurd concept.

• Hasbro Marvel 6" Figures Official Press Photos: Fantastic Four Legends Series 1, Spider-man Legends 6" Series 1, and Marvel Legends Series 4.



Thur 8/2/07 12:35am #

Lessons from tonight's game night
• Lesson 1: The latest "Avengers Set" of Heroclix are impossible to compete against straight with the older figures (and often the newer figures too). There are too many characters with 17, 18 and 19 defenses plus damage reducers. Very difficult to do any damage against the newer characters from the older ones without combining 3 or 4 character's powers in some intricate attack scheme. The next DC set looks to be worse.
• Lesson 2: My friends are very patient when I get distracted by some bug in one of my computers. (For their info: I finally figured out the issue after you guys left. A firewall I installed last week was blocking my incoming traffic on the file share. I added my local computers to the whitelist, and everything worked fine again.)
• Lesson 3: My oven set to 450deg and left on over a couple hours will completely cancel out my air conditioning. (Bummer about that. Note to self... turn off oven when the fries are done next time.)
• Lesson 4: The word "Stories" can now have an entirely different meaning.

All for now.



Wed 8/1/08 6:45am #

Let's Go Surfing

Lego Indianna Jones Game Trailer. Looks fun.

Iron Man Movie Video Game Preview looks pretty lame compared to the movie preview seen earlier.

• Last night I watched and briefly commented on Babylon 5 the Lost Tales.



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