Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Updated Yet?

I have quite a few friends that blog regularly, and I love reading them all! What I hate is checking a list of five or six blogs every morning and evening for updates, so I've come up with a solution, of sorts. Unfortunately, it needs your help, fellow bloggers!

See, I'm going to archive a direct link to this post at the side there, under the heading of "Terrific Updates". Any time you update your own blog, my friend, just pop over here, click the link, and leave a comment on this very post!! That way, I get an instant email telling me you updated, and I can go read all about your interesting life, and the crazy adventure you got up to today that makes me want to buy a bus/train/plane ticket to wherever you are and hang out with you right now!

If anyone out there has similar problems keeping up to date with your friends lives, just copy this idea, and text, into a post on your own blog!! Only we can make life easier for all.

So get posting and commenting. I look forward to reading your next entry.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Buffalo: New King Of The Savanna

Unlike my last video, this is awesomely cool! Not only can I say "Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo" and have a complete grammatically accurate sentance, but it would appear that they have recently taken their rightful place as Kings of the Savana! The following video is about 8m30s long, but worth every second. It has about fours "acts", all over a single incident, each one topping the last for amazingness. After the first minute or so the footage is a single, uncut shot.

Reason 6,438 For Why People Should Need A License To Spawn

This is insane. I mean, yeah, it's kinda cool to see, and the baby seems to be enjoying himself, but it's still not acceptable! The poor animal is scared to death.

Overheard On...

Gmail! To be truthful, it was less "overheard", and more typed back and forth, with intermittent "bings" being the only actual sounds, but you get the idea!

Bob: help am being abductd
me: WhA?!? Dammit! They're supposed to take MEEEE! Here! I'm here! I want to see you alien mothership!!!
Whisk me away into the stars! I'm ready!
TAKE MEEEEE!!!!!
Sent at 12:03 AM on Thursday
Bob: ZAadefn #
me: What?!? Yes! I understand! I'll happily allow that.
As your people say, ZETdefreww CWE ~~@S Eef.
Sent at 12:07 AM on Thursday
Bob: dam it
me: Buh? Did they leave? Are they coming for me?? Oh god! I need to pack.
Sent at 12:10 AM on Thursday
Bob: ack
me: Ack?
Bob: ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack
ack ack ack ?
me: Ack-ack-ack ackack!
Nanoo-nanoo!
Sent at 12:15 AM on Thursday
Bob: Durka-durka, durka-durka probe-u-later?
me: Probe-u-later? I hardly know 'er!! Ah-hahahahaha!!
Sent at 12:17 AM on Thursday
Posted direct and unedited, even leaving in the hurriedly typed awful spelling and grammar!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Daily Double Homicide

I was at home for a few days from Sunday through to Thursday of this week. Originally planned as just a nice trip home to see the family and chill out with no commitments or pressures, it would seem some higher force felt otherwise. However, more of that later.

While I was at home I got the chance to catch up on some television viewing. As some of you know, I don't have a television in my house, or to be accurate, I do, but it's not plugged in to any aerial, so technically I'm only short on channels, not the physical box. Anyway, the one show I enjoyed most while I was at home was an old favourite of mine, Murder, She Wrote.

RTÉ One are currently airing two episodes a day of J.B. Fletchers adventures in Cabot Cove, from 3:30pm in case anyone wants to catch it. I remember when we were really young my brother and I were let stay up to watch Murder, She Wrote when it was considered prime time viewing. My mum loved, and indeed still loves, this show, and we all watched it together. I often asked why we never saw any of Jessicas books in the bookstores, as I really wanted to read some of her stuff! Ah, the innocence of youth!

Watching it again, I know why I loved it so much back then, and I still do now. The show is incredible! When it's hitting its stride, the plots are clever and suspenseful, the dialog sharp and witty and the acting strong and engaging. The style and look of the show is classic, and even walking in during an episode, before Angela Lansbury appears as the master-mystery-writer-turned-detective, you can name the show simply by the framing of the shots, the colours and the movement of the camera. There is something distinctly unique in it.

Angela Lansbury is riveting to watch on-screen. She has a power that few actors possess, and her presence is powerful, yet never seems to overshadow the accompanying actors. Speaking of which, in the five or so episodes I caught of the show over the time I was home, Jessica was in three of them for less than five minutes each! Instead, master-thief-turned-detective (pattern emerging) Dennis Stanton headed up the case, getting into mischief along the way! Although I enjoyed this character, played with flair by Keith Michell, he wasn't Jessica. A little research into the matter proves I'm not the only one who thought that. Episodes like these I saw, as well as a few narrated by Jessica as one of her novels, and one or two other master-whatever-turned-detective were used to give Angela a break from the hectic shooting schedule, however, negative fan reaction meant that they were dropped in later seasons.

Watching Murder, She Wrote at home again was a joy. After seeing it I did some research and discovered the following:

  • Angela Lansbury is the only one to appear in all 263 episodes of the series, during its 12 seasons, from 1984 to 1996, on CBS, as well as the four subsequent TV movies.
  • On it's 12th season it was moved from it's Sunday evening slot where it had been hugely popular for over a decade to Thursday evenings, putting it against Friends. This was because CBS was trying to make Sundays more teen-friendly. The show floundered and was announced to be finishing on that season. The last four episode returned to the Sunday slot, receiving high ratings once more, the final episode being the 16th in the ratings and the most viewed show on CBS that week!
  • None-too-subtly, the final episode is titled Death By Demographics and sees a station head changing the stations focus from classical to rock'n'roll to reach a younger audience. The experiment fails, and he ends up dead! Hmmm...
  • Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski spent time as producer on the show, writing a number of episodes. He is credited as spending the most time emphasising Jessicas career as a writer, making deadlines and such a part of the episodes.
  • I read somewhere that Straczynski attributes his time on Murder, She Wrote as invaluable in helping him learn how to write mystery's with effective foreshadowing. Apparently, writing for the show allowed for no short-cuts, as the audience had to be able to see all the clues in the episode, and potentially piece them together themselves. Straczynshi has said that this helped him in crafting story elements that would pay off much further down the line for everything from Babylon 5 to Rising Stars and even his run on Spider-Man!
  • Angela loves Ireland, owning a home in West Cork. Because of this, there are a number of episodes based in Ireland, particularly in the south. Two of them are titled A Killing In Cork, and Another Killing In Cork. How imaginative! The most recent TV movie is also based in Ireland, The Celtic Riddle.
  • And finally, in 1986 there was a cross-over with Magnum P.I., which began in Magnum and concluded in Murder, She Wrote with the episode Magnum on Ice! Sweet! Two of my favourite shows!
Sorry if all that was a bit long winded! I just loved reading about the show, and wanted to share! Besides, if you don't like it, tough! My blog! I get to write what I want! Ha! Anyway, thanks for reading, as always. I'll be putting up more over the next few days, including why my time at home wasn't all fun and games, what I thought of The Bourne Ultimatum (I'll save ya reading that one! Freakin' awesome is the summary!) and one or two other interesting bits and pieces that are itching to get onto the internet! Until then, have fun!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Dibs On Optic Blasts!

A few posts back I told you about my "5 Questions" I was doing as part of Flickr. Well, I ended up with an unexpected 30 questions, all of which I answered. Some were funny, some serious but all of them were interesting, and I enjoyed thinking about the questions and how to answer them truthfully.

One of the questions asked was "If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?" After thinking long and hard on it, I decided on my answer.

Wow. Um... Is it terrible if I say that I'd love if super-powers existed? Does that count? Seriously. I have always dreamed about it, and still do. I wake up in the morning, and if I'm feeling particularly silly, I'll lie in bed wondering what it would be like to open my curtains and see people flying outside, or turn on the TV and hear about the newest crisis averted by the premier super-team. Yeah, I admit I'm only thinking of the cool stuff, and not the "Rogue mutants nuke elementary school" stuff, but it's just a nice dream, right! Sure, it's not "end world hunger" or "stop war", but it's my change! And a cheat. With super-powers in existance, anything is possible!

Now it seems I might not have as long to wait for that to happen after all! This last year or so has turned up some very interesting occurances that alone are odd, but together are just far to coincidental to ignore!

In the last few months two amazingly comic relate discoveries have been uncovered, both relate to the Superman mythos. In Mexico, a huge cavern with gypsum columns up to 36 feet long was discovered 1,000 feet below ground! It looks incredibly like Kal-El's Fortress of Solitude, and is a stunning example of nature at her most impressive. The second event relates to the discovery of Kryptonite! An unknown mineral composed of the chemicals sodium, lithium, boron, silicate, hydroxide was discovered to match the description of Kryptonite, only missing fluorine. Unfortunately, this material has been named jadarite, much to the dismay to millions of comics readers around the world!

So, Mother Nature, now we have a Fortess of Solitude and Kryptonite. When are you going to give Marvel a shout-out? I want my damned optic blasts! I want human flight, steel skin, phase-shifting, and all the other wonderful things those wacky mutants get up to! Not all for myself, of course. I'll just be happy with optic blasts. And if Claire could get telekinesis I'd be greatful too.

Thanks.

Denis.

Vocabulary Fun

A word association game has gripped my select number of friends here in Cork, and has begun to travel abroad, reaching out to San Fransisco and Toronto! Funny Farm starts you on the centre block, with just the phrase "On The Farm". From there, you have to snake out to the surrounding blocks, slowly making connections across the board. The corner blocks also contain a yellow "clue word", each of which hints at the complete metapuzzle answer.

This is one tough game! It's virtually impossible to do alone, but amazing fun when you have friends helping out. In our own house we have the game running on both the PC and laptop, while some of us guess blindly and others can research possibilities. But no amount of research will get you all the answers, unless you find a list of answers, in which case you cheated anyway. As well as that, the same game is running in one or two locations around Cork, with Karen in California, and with Bob in Canada! What amazing fun!

Feel free to give the game a try yourself, but if you want to pick up from where we are, I'll post the link to the puzzle as we have it in the comments to this entry. That way you can expand the growing network of friends determined to solve this game through honest research, luck and lateral thinking. Ok. A little knowledge is involved too, but not much!