Archive for July, 2008

Number Crunching My Lunching

July 29, 2008

Where I work in midtown Manhattan, you can expect to pay anywhere between 6 – 10 dollars if you buy your lunch (between 15 – 20 if you go to an average restaurant after tip and drink water).  Simple math tells me that if I work 5 days a week, 50 weeks a year, at just seven dollars per lunch, that’s in the vicinity of $1,750.00 a year.  And I usually visit a restaurant or fast food establishment once or twice on weekends, so you can add at least another $700 to that annually. 

Good thing I enjoy PB&J’s.  I suddenly have the urge to eat a lot more of them.

Dark Knight

July 29, 2008

Maybe I’m still basing my judgement of this movie on the seemingly never ending hype.  Perhaps Heath Ledger’s death changed our perception of his already stellar performance.  Or maybe it seems so amazing because it’s the first quality film we’ve seen at the movies in a long time.  It might not be so great, the other movies in its category could just be that bad.  

What set this apart?  A combination of all the elements coming together and each pulling its weight.  Several movies rely on special effects to carry a film, while sacrificing plot.  Some movies have one strong actor that they build the movie around (i.e. anything with Will Smith) and then they usually sell them, not the story of the movie.  Dark Knight, as cliche as it is, has it all.  Every actor seems like the lead when they are on the screen.  They are supported by special effects that are top notch and a musical score that perfectly matches the tone and underlying morality tale within the masterfully deep script.  They pack so much into the 2 1/2 hour time, yet don’t wear you out in the process because it’s immersing, not overbearing.

A word on Ledger…  Without a doubt one of the best character performances I’ve ever seen.  As a long time fan of Batman, I’m familiar with the many styles of Joker that have come and gone.  To compare Ledger’s performance to that of Jack Nicholson is essentially useless.  They are, in my opinion, not truly the same character.  The differences in the Joker’s are as different as the movies they appeared in.  In this instance, I have never seen a character more understood and conveyed in such an enchanting manner.  I’d also like to second the opinions of many others out there in blog land: we lost a great talent with the passing of Heath Ledger.  I didn’t know he had it in him and I am sad that I’ll never get to see another masterful work of art like this from him.  

You know you’re talking about a good movie when you have a hard time organizing your thoughts about it. I’m left with many impressions and the first is if you have access to it, please see this movie on Imax as it was intended.  Secondly, enjoy and appreciate this movie as something rare: a summer movie that was a huge success because it was worthy of being one, not because it was just the best movie of the weekend to choose from.  This movie will not come and go.  People will be using this movie as a yardstick for many movies in many genres for a long time.

Your thoughts??

– J

Sad But True

July 25, 2008

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A Flying Julying

July 24, 2008

This month has just blown by!  Heck, this year seems to be going somewhere in an awful hurry.  I can’t keep up with myself lately and I’m not really used to this.  I’ve always made it a point to schedule down time for myself and keep a pretty low profile.  I woke up a few weeks ago and suddenly found that I had church meetings, extra work at the office and a budding social life to cultivate.  I haven’t even been playing Wii much, if that’s any indication.

I’m anxious to get to this weekend because it’s going to be great (and, to stay on topic, busy).  Tomorrow night Roomie is having some friends in town so we’ll be out entertaining.  Saturday morning, I’ll be seeing The Dark Knight on Imax for the second time.  I wanted to see it twice before offering my thoughts on it.  And oh man, do I have some thoughts on it.  

Sunday morning is church.  Afterward, I’m going to a meeting about a mission trip next summer to Haiti.  I’ve been thinking about finding an excuse to see another country and I figure a mission trip is as good a reason to get out there and see the world as any.  And if ever there was a test for my faith and something to bring me closer to God, it’s getting prelimenary bloodwork done to leave the country.  Needles…  *shudder*

In other happenings, occasionally little perks pop up when working for a law firm.  One such perk came my way last week in the form of an invitation to a special event tonight hosted by John Allan’s and Saks Fifth Avenue.  It’s a private shopping and scotch tasting event.  We get the men’s department to ourselves, a huge discount on shopping for the evening, scotch tasting and a complimentary hair cut and shoe shine.  I’m not really a fan of scotch, but I am a fan of free so I think a compromise is in order.

Y’all be good!

– J

Got Her Money’s Worth?

July 17, 2008

The Metro, a free newspaper provided to subway riders in NYC, brings this little gem by way of it’s front page this morning…

Here are the facts, in chronological order:

  1. Woman wears a $69 shirt saying “Obama is my Slave”
  2. Woman wears it in Union Square at night
  3. Woman gets attacked by 4 black women
  4. Woman wants to SUE THE MAKER OF THE SHIRT

How’s that again?  She believed enough in what the shirt said to pay 70 bucks to wear it.  It’s blatantly offensive and guaranteed to draw attention (why else would you wear something like that except for attention).  She gets assaulted and claims it’s the fault of the person who SOLD it to her??  This isn’t like buying a defective circular saw and loosing a finger.  This is an item that worked as advertised that she paid money to wear and got mugged because of her choice to do so. 

It’s true the 4 women shouldn’t have attacked her (because of the shirt nobody seems concerned that they are the only people in this article who committed any crimes), but I’m having a real hard time feeling sorry this woman.  As I’ve said before, just because you have a voice that doesn’t mean everyone needs to hear it.

– J

A Cute Robot and A Violent Faun

July 10, 2008

While on vacation I saw two movies.  Wall-E and Wanted.  Here’s a few (mostly) spoiler-free recaps.


Wall-E was a delightfully original movie by Pixar detailing the experiences of Wall-E, the last of a series of waste control robots left on earth to clean up the humans’ excessive trash while they take a (supposedly) 5 year vacation in space.  Genuinely funny and with a good (but not overpowering) message to take away.  Pixar never ceases to amaze me with their ability to generate true emotion from seemingly inanimate objects.  Their first major short was that of two swing-arm lamps and even in something so plain as a lamp they express joy, sadness, excitement, nurturing and lots of humor.  Wall-E is an even better example, given he has more moving parts to play with.  Even through his one facial expression you still run a gamut of emotions. 


Wanted is a high octane, action packed shoot ’em up staring Angelina Jolie, Morgan Freeman and Mr. Tumnus.  Mr. Tumnus is abruptly ripped from his mundane life in the Wardrobe by a gun slinging assassin in the form of Mrs. Pitt.  Joining her team, he then discovers he possesses certain inherited traits that allow him to ignore basic principles of physics.  With his newly acquired Matrix Spider Sense, Mr. Tumnus quickly becomes the best assassin on the market.  There are some really over the top car chases that are fun to watch and some nice plot twists along the way.  It’s not one for the kiddies, in my opinion.  The language and violence is pretty intense.

Hot wax can cure broken bones.  TRUE STORY.

– J

Back in the Saddle

July 8, 2008

Please forgive the hiatus in posting, dear readers.  I’ve been on vacation and decided that should include a vacation from the internet as well.  You should try it some time.  When it’s of your own volition and not forced, it’s quite rewarding.

I spent a week or so back in Texas filled with family, friends, fishing, food and fireworks.  An effing good time, you might say*.  It was a much needed break from the havoc of the city, but I was glad to return to “normal” life.  Whatever that is.  Perhaps I’ll expound more on my trip later.

At the moment, I need to share some excitement.  Last night after work I trotted on down to my local GameStop and picked up Guitar Hero: Aerosmith.  Yes, this is a complete copy of Guitar Hero 3 only with Aerosmith characters and songs.  Why people see a problem with this is beyond me.  I am, I admit, totally biased in my opinion.  In case you weren’t aware, Aerosmith is pretty much my favorite band.  Ever.  If you are not an Aerosmith fan, you should seek professional help then this game is not for you and you should just stick to GH3.

That will do for now, I suppose.  Love you guys.

– J(oe Perry rocks)


* See what I did there?