2004 Jan 26
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I was reading this bit about Dodger Stadium on the Los Angeles Dodgers website and thought it was interesting:
“The 100,000 square feet of bermuda grass is grown on pure sand, beneath which a vacuum chamber is laid over a water-tight plastic barrier that forcibly extracts water during heavy rains. New moisture gauges monitor the field’s water level in coordination with a microprocessor that controls drainage functions. A computer controller has the ability to reverse the scenario and subirrigate when the sand’s moisture reading drops below the optimal level.”
This would be a cool system for my backyard. Speaking of which, I was doing some yardwork yesterday when a snake slithered out of the rocks, then slithered back into the rocks. It scared the bejeezus out of me!
[pic from “2002 Two Guys & a Map Midlife Crisis Tour”]
2004 Jan 25
I found the gasket set, in case anyone is keeping score. I also found the new headlight and extra bulbs. Now I am having trouble with the electrical system (no spark) and am utilizing the collective wisdom of the Yahoo! C70 Group to help me diagnose the problem.
2004 Jan 23
I bought a gasket set for my supercub back in October and put it somewhere… Now that I am ready to replace the gaskets in my carb, I can’t find it. Dang! Where could it be? I just need to fix that so that the gas doesn’t leak out anymore, then make sure my spark plug is getting juice and I should be good to go!
News flash! Henry Earl is back in jail! This guy has been popular here in the office, and around the net community. Check out his Department of Corrections file in Kentucky. He’s really a big drinker… You gotta look at all his mug shots, some are really good.
2004 Jan 22
I had suspected that I was the last person in Austin to see this movie, and I thought that my suspicions were correct when I entered the theater five minutes before showtime and I was the only one there. Then I thought, this will be too weird seeing this movie, which will have some scary parts, alone in this big theater. Luckily, right before the trailers started, a bunch of people arrived, and I guess the total crowd amounted to about ten. Anyways, the trailers started and there are some cool movies coming out. The one that struck me the most was Captain Somethingorother (I forgot the name) starring Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow and the Tomb Raider girl, whose name I can’t remember right now. It’s got lots of flying scenes, which looked so cool. Ok, on to my movie review.
The Return of the King was one of the best movies I have ever seen. I was totally blown away! The thing about the Lord of the Rings movies is that they are only fantastic if you have read the books. If you didn’t, you’d probably enjoy the first movie, the second will have you saying, “huh?” a few times, and the third will have you saying, “What the f$*k?” a bunch of times. But… if you read the books, you will have already “filled in the blanks” in the plot.
The special effects were simply amazing. The city of Minas Tirith was so well done, I couldn’t believe it. The lava at the end of the movie seemed realistic too. I can’t imaging how they made it look so real, especially when they had the close-up of Sam’s face, and the lava in the background. I tried to look for any weird masking around his hair, but it was totally seamless. And the giant spider, Shelob? That was so creepy, especially because spiders (and insects in general) gross me out.
Then there were the battle scenes which were brutal, but not so gory as to be unwatchable. Just the right amount, I think. During the main battle of Minas Tirith, the effects just kept getting better and better. First there were the orcs which were so evil, you just had to hate them. Then came the trolls which were fantastic when they dwere simply pushing the war machines. Then when they broke through the gates, they were awesome! Man, how can you go up to fight something like that? Then the catapult scenes where huge boulders were flying back and forth. After that, the Nazgul flying were flying picking up soldiers and their horses. And when you thought it couldn’t get any better, those huge elephant-things made their appearance. Talk about kicking it up a notch! The tusks swinging back and forth flinging men and horses in the air was intense. That was the best battle scene ever!
There were several moments in the movie where I said, “Yes!” out loud: when Gandalf fended of the Nazgul who were picking off the men of Gondor, when the riders of Rohan were plowing through the orc army, and when Eowyn downed the elephant beast, and when Eowyn killed the Nazgul king. That was a great fight, and very true to the books.
Other really amazing scenes that stick in my mind were: Frodo walking along the path with Shelob right behind him, the steward of Gondor running off the cliff while on fire, the lighting of the fire beacons in the mountains, when the orc captain side-stepped the catapult boulder, Frodo and Sam taking a rest on the cliff by the stairs (my fear of heights, hehe), and of course Gollum dancing around when he finally got the ring.
One thing that made this final movie better than the other two was that I knew that I would be able to see the conclusion of the trilogy and all the subplots would come together in the end. During the first two, I didn’t enjoy the movies as much because I knew that when it ended, things still wouldn’t be resolved. But, how cool is it that each movie was released only a year apart? Much better than Star Wars, which is around three years between episodes. And speaking of Star Wars, one thing that made LotR much better is that you really hate the bad guys in LotR, and when they get theirs, it is very satisfying. But in Star Wars, the bad guys were so cool, you didn’t want them to be killed. (Jango Fett, Darth Maul, Boba Fett, Darth Vader) I was really rooting for the bad guys in the Star Wars films…
Oh, the movie is long! Make sure you visit the bathroom before the movie starts. I made the mistake of getting a soda, and after the movie ended, I took the longest whiz of my life!
Anyways, I can’t wait to see Return of the King again when it comes to the discount cinema, probably this summer. In the meantime, I just might read Return of the King one more time!
2004 Jan 19
I think I have decided on a color for my supercub… grayish green. I don’t know how to describe it. Heh, I don’t have to describe it! Here’s a picture so you can see for yourself:
Anyways, I have the supercub fever again. Tonight I am going to clear out space in the garage that is right now occupied by the Ikea boxes and set up my supercub restoration space. Here’s a link to my old supercub page. I guess I should update this too! And forgive the duplicate post there… thanks!
If you like taking those fun online personality quizzes, head on over to Quizilla. They have tons. Some examples are:
Which Lord of the Rings character and personality problem are you?
Which Of The Greek Gods Are You?
What Snack Food are You?
2004 Jan 16
Well, everyone else out there who blogs seems to have already posted their new year’s resolutions, so I figure I will as well.
First and most importantly is for me to save money. In other words, don’t spend it! No more impulse buys, less eating out for lunch, etc. Also, I want to update our Quicken file each day and follow the budget. Quicken is an awesome program, and when you hook it up with your bank accounts to download the data automatically, it is really convenient too. Anyways, I want to spend at least ten minutes a night updating it.
I need to throw out a lot of stuff that I never use or look at. I am sort of a pack-rat, and that is not good. Our computer room “office” has way too many things in it. I need to throw out computer software books, old toys, magazines, etc.
Another thing I want to do this year is to take care of our yard and garden, which had fallen by the wayside. That will be difficult with the new baby on his way, but something I think I can do. I found some old pictures of when we first created our gardens, and they looked great! I want to get them back to looking like that.
Take more photos. Not just of Bay, but more creatively and artistically. I want to use my film camera more, which kind of makes me think more about composing photos. With the digital, it is just so convenient to snap of several pictures that you end up not taking the time to compose the image.
Finish restoring my supercub. I think I have all the parts now. I just need to spend the time and apply a bit of elbow grease to get that thing running! I still can’t decide on a color, though!
I’m sure I will think of more, but that should be good for now.