Friday, March 23, 2007

I'm Not a Geek, I Just Play One on TV.

Using a Wiimote and a program named, "WiiSaber" which is open source (and Mac exclusive), I'm swinging it like I own it. It connects via Bluetooth and though the program crashed a couple times before it got going, it was totally worth it. I cut off my own head (not with the Wiimote, you silly bastard) for obvious reasons - I don't want to be that Asian guy on Youtube who swings his Wiimote around like a freaking idiot.

I'm not a Star Wars Fan, but this made me a little moist.

On a tangent, I watched Drew Barrymore on "Inside the Actor's Studio" the other day, and evidently her least favorite word was "moist."


There was also another program called Wii Loop Machine, but it's mostly experimental. I worked for the most part, but I think the loops just weren't interesting enough to play with.


So we got ourselves a brand new fancy Sonicare, because the dentist told me to get one and it was The Last Double Discount Day ever. Ever. I'll get to the other dentist task of ridding this world of hamsters later on when I have more time, and jumping this high for those wonderful dentists. Haven't used it yet, has to charge. But we got two heads because we're cheap that way, and the two of us can use it and not be gross. Evidently though, Philips is aware of this and sells replacement heads in a blue and pink combo. How handy.


Oh, although the page loads like molasses, this is a great page for comic book fans. Maybe the last Superman movie might have gotten more audiences if Superman acted like a dick.


Okay, I thought I had more to share, but apparently not.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Mmm... Speedlight.

My wife moaned when she heard about this and tried very, very hard not to kill me. I was pretty much over the hardware acquistion project, whereby I buy lots and lots of computers, gadgets and video equipment to fulfill my dream of becoming a living media center - a self-sufficient photography, video, and publishing studio.

Anyway, read up on the Nikon SB400, a smallish easy going speedlight that isn't your full fledged speedlight, but certainly one that meets most of my needs. Because I'm home so much, and so much of my shots of the kids are indoors, and also because I live in a state whereby sunlight is in short demand, a speedlight like that would be so great.

It costs about a hundred, which isn't small change, but it certainly isn't too out of reach. I should be coming into some wedding money soon - maybe if I do my gigolo dance and shake my ass a little, my wife will consider it. It's funny though, reading on all the photography forums, a lot of the photographers always have the wife factor. One of them had the same dilemna, and after some forum help, the guy said, "My wife curseth thee!"

The rollover photos on this review
shows what difference using a speedlight can do: I certainly didn't know.

Um. What?

So I was posting last night about the toothache that was keeping me up, right?

Three Tylenols didn't work, neither did one Vicodin. And some salt water. After the second Vicodin, I was so tired that I just had to fall asleep finally. At 6 something in the morning. I had fallen asleep for about half an hour at three something, but my wife tossed and her arm smacked me on the head and woke me up.

I woke up at one something in the afternoon, very confused. Felt like I pissed the whole day away. Well, I'll be getting some work done tonight. To offset the sleeping in.


If you've been keeping track of youtube and David O. Russell, I hope he never makes another movie again. An on-set camera caught his fight with Lily Tomlin on I Heart Huckabees, and that man is an absolute tool. I've been unprofessional, but this man is ridiculous. He calls Tomlin "bitch" and "cunt", and tosses things around the set like some deranged egotist who thinks his movie warrants his behavior. Makes me wish George Clooney had went ahead and strangled him in "Three Kings."


Well, work it is.


I should be in bed now, but since my teeth has decided to act up again, I'm just staying up, waiting for the Tylenol to kick it. I wouldn't be able to fall asleep anyway, with the pain. Yes, this pain was as bad as the pain that brought me into the dentist's office in the first place, before all that wisdom teeth got yanked.

Incidentally, I got an explanation of the benefits from that procedure today, and somehow when they said 90 percent coverage, in layman math, it's more like 50 percent. Which means I might have a thousand plus balance I have to pay. I'll be talking to them soon.


We've been watching "The Riches" on FX, and it's different. The main reason why I'm watching it is because of Eddie Izzard, whom I think is one of the best comedians out there because his comedy is not the usual stereotype baiting crap that floats around. He doesn't have to necessarily demean the other sex or another race to get a cheap laugh. He has an absurdist type of humor, which I think is something I enjoy, being a Stephen Chow fan on top of that. Anyway, I can't help but watch the show and think, hee hee, that's Izzard trying to be American. From Louisiana. Minnie Driver's pretty good, other than the fact that she's always looked a bit... acute to me. I dunno, her face is both very obtuse and acute, like a contradictary face that's easy and hard to look at.


So, Eddie himself has commented in his standup that he does two accents - James Mason and Sean Connery. In this he's doing Eddie with the British toned down. It's not here or there, but he's still fun to look at. And why the other "travellers" in camp look more like cast members of "My Name is Earl" and why Eddie Izzard looks like a real estate agent is beyond me. But the series itself is interesting, the concept is interesting, and I'm watching it because it's Eddie.


Zoe has a flair for threatrics, something that was recessive in our genes that somehow surfaced despite a lack of influence from her mother, her older sisters, or any TV show we watch. Admittedly, a lot of shows we watch are either catered more to boys or the asexual persuasion, but Zoe's just got that Princess breed in her.

Tonight at dinner, my wife was talking to me, and Zoe tapped her on the shoulder. When she turned to look at Zoe, Zoe had this flirty little smirk on her face, and she did this dainty little wave with her fingers, shrugged her shoulders and crinkled her nose. If she wasn't my child, I'd swear she was some showbiz acting kid trying to get a spot of Barney. Them showkids on Barney make me physically angry. I actually don't mind Barney, but man, those kids with their over acting...

But she did that and I just burst into laughter. It was cute, but I think I laughed because it was so brilliantly cheesy and innocent at the same time.


We're trying to figure out Alex today. He's been not listening, acting a little too independent, and perhaps a little sensitive as well. He can be defiant when we ask him something, but once we raise our voice, sometimes he just falls apart, even if we're not really that angry, but just want to be heard. He plays beyond acceptable boundaries sometimes, being a little rough with us or Zoe, or just play fighting with us and shoving things at our faces - it's all normal boy behavior, I suppose, but it's a little aggressive even for me. I really want to instill some compassion into him and get him to control the aggression a little...

And just trying to give him due attention because he is really a sweet boy. I actually like it during bedtime because he's really cuddly then. He'll demand a hug, a kiss, and he'll say, "Goodnight, Daddy."

We were watching a video of him tonight from two years ago, and you could pluck the sighs out of the air. They sure do grow fast.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Babel, Wake Up Call Part 2.

So I was writing about how Zoe woke me up, and I thought it was the sweetest thing in the world...

Well, last night after having this dream whereby all my teeth were loose and barely hanging on, I woke up to intense pain and realized that my gums were really hurting up a storm. So I took some Tylenol and went back to bed. At around ten, Zoe came up and climbed up onto the bed next to me, and starting jumping around. I was awake, but just really out of it. Then I heard her open the Nintendo DS, turn on Sudoku (my wife plays it. It confuses me too much.) and frantically tapping the screen as if she was trying to bring it to life. When I turned to tell her to be more gentle, she sneezed on my face, showering me with her love.

Ah, to be a Dad.


I spent most of today just hanging out with the fam, going to Walmart and Ranch 99, which is an Asian supermarket that's close to Kent. During the trip, I was telling my wife about my former employer and her current one, who had in the past really come out against Walmart's unfair treatment of its employees, trying to take away their medical, forcing them to work without overtime pay, and so forth. Well, our Union is now fighting with the company because the company is trying to do just that. Take away premium pay for holidays and graveyard shifts, chip away a bunch of other benefits that they've been critical of Walmart doing. In the end, it's always the employee that loses.


Yesterday, feeling a disconnection between myself and Alex, I spent a few hours just having some father son time with him. We hit the Sweet Factory and he got to have 2 gummi boneheads (skulls, but my kids call them boneheads.), a gummi snake, and gummi fish. We went to Borders and looked at a book about bugs, a pop-up monster book, and then we went to a strip club for his first lapdance. Well, no, but I was trying awful hard to connect with the boy.

My penny analysis was that because I am an introverted individual as he is, we don't usually reach out to communicate with each other. Zoe reaches out to me and I respond, but Alex keeps to himself a lot of times, and when he does reach out, it comes out as playing or physical activity, which I don't do as much as I should. I love my boy, and I really like to talk to him, but he's not quite as vocal as I'd like him to be. He does a lot of yapping and smiling, which is sweet, but sometimes I do wish he'd just say something to me instead of yelping for attention. My wife actually feels the same about Zoe, a sense of disconnect. So, it's going to be something that we'll try to do more often, to pair up and spend more time with the children we don't usually pair up with.


Okay, so we finally watched Babel tonight, and man - the tone of it, the storytelling - if I could even induce half of the tone of Babel into my script, I'd be elated. It has the same kind of structure, the span is a little more restricted, but more or less the same non-linear/everything is connected sort of way.

At the end I took a stab at the ending, which remains vague and has incited a lot speculation about what it was about. If you have seen the movie and would like to read about my take on it, click here.

I thought it was wonderfully written, and just great acting all around. After seeing this and United 93, and my bias toward the Departed, I wished the race would've turned out differently.


Been thinking about making a photobook from They have pretty good prices, but I can't seem to think of a theme for the photobook. I'm leaning toward, "Things that make me smile."

And then try not to overpower it with photos of the kids.