Friday, May 31, 2013

Happy Anniversary Babe!

After Earth and After the Critics

If I went by the movie critics in our state newspapers, USA Today, and Rotten Tomatoes, there's no way I would have gone to witness: AFTER EARTH, the new Will Smith sic-fi movie.  Everyone is calling it dull and slow.  Compared to Star Trek and Iron Man 3 the body count is simply too low, something doesn't explode every 30 seconds, and the hero's in this movie are too human.  Iy is against the movie laws to only have three or four fierce encounters.

That's why I liked it.  The story is that Humans abandoned earth 1,000 years ago and live on another similar planet. Will Smith is a famous General who has no fear. His son in the movie is played by his son. The boy wants to follow in Dad'd foot steps and Dad finally decides to let him go on a training mission to another planet. On the trip the star ship hits an astroid field and crashes on a forbidden planet (Earth).  All the wild life on earth has evolved into human hating adversaries. Note: This is a rare movie that portrays earth as a lush planet of trees, streams, herds of buffaloes, etc.  Its just that the Apes, Eagles, etc. are mean.

In the crash Will is injured and the son has to fight the elements and travel to part of the wreckage that has the emergency beacon.

The movie is about Father and son reuniting, facing fear, overcoming past incidents and survival.  It is NOT a crazy fast action movie, though it spooked me quite enough.

I liked this movie a lot.  I give it ***stars   2013 movie 21

Critics are weird!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Happy 45th


I grew up with the Beatles and Paul McCartney.  I can say that the Beatles and Beach Boys made the soundtrack of my high school and college days.  Wednesday night as part of our 45th wedding anniversary (Saturday), Carol and I went to the Paul McCartney "Out There" 2013 tour stop in Tulsa.

Paul sung 38 songs that spans his career a recordings from 1962 to now.  I basically grew up with Paul, who is three years my senior.

When he sung "All My Loving" and "And I Love her", it took me back to 1963, dragging Main in Haskell with Mike Nesser as we listened to WLS Chicago radio and talking about girls.

When he sung "8 Days a Week" it reminded me of watching there movie "HELP" at a Tahlequah Drive In with Carol, when she came for a visit at NSU.

When he did "Back in the USSR", it reminded me of our first Christmas in 1968 in Stillwater. We lived in an attic apartment (Ceiling 7 foo tall and sloping walls).  The rent was 59 dollars a month - Furnished.  We stretched a little and bought a small turn table, tuner and speakers in beautiful walnut for almost $100.00.  Then for Christmas Carol bought me The Beatles "White Album" which includes: "Back in the USSR,  Ob-Bla-De Ob-Bla- Da, Blackbird, and Helter Skelter". All sung last night.

When he played, "Get Back", I remembered our second garage apartment ($65 a month) on Husband Street.

I could go on but the point is Paul has been along for our 45 year ride.  The younger kids can try to tell me that Zepplin, U2, or Aerosmith were the greatest.   PL-E-E-E-ASE

For my generation: when the Beatles broke up we went to The Eagles.

Happy Anniversary, Carol, this has NOT been a dull ride.  If our life was a ride at Six Flags it would 6 loops and two free falls!

BTW  It was a great concert!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Mud 2

On Memorial Day  we went back to see "MUD" again. Carol hadn't seen it yet and it the best movie out without any CGI. (I can say that because in "42" Brooklyn was CGI).  If you get a chance get into MUD.

Still ****.  2013 Movie #19 (Actually 20:  I saw a movie that I did not review and won"t)

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Road Less Traveled: a Minority Report on Happy, Happy, Happy

Just so you know up front, I may have watched 2 episodes of "Duck Dynasty" from beginning to end.  Every time my friends talk about how it is their favorite show, I try again to see what I'm missing and the answer (FOR ME) is NOTHING.  I can't take Si or the straining at old tag lines of the past and the trying to be normal with a camera crew and a producer saying:  "How about this episode, Si makes a mess in the warehouse?"

So when Phil Robertson's book came out, "Happy, Happy, Happy (The Legend of the Duck Commander)", I downloaded the audio and listened to it on a trip. Our Family Minister at church urged everyone to read it and said the last two chapters was worth it.  So, I did.  There are a couple of good chapters out of 12, mainly centering on his conversion to Jesus and about his ministry.

Other parts had differing effects on me:

1. He and I are the same age and grew up in the same way even though I lived in town.  We had chickens, and pigs. We put up both game hens, beef and chickens in the meat locker downtown.
My mother and grandmother caned in the summer and fall and our closed-in back porch was lined with Kerr and Mason Jars with jellies, green beans, spinach and mustard greens, etc.  He just lived at the river.  My friends were all big duck and dear hunters. I played sports. My six years in 120th Combat Engineers took the camping and gun toting right out of my system.

2.  The Duck Commander goes out of his way to attack or belittle people who aren't like him.  In his Redneck world, men who like computers, Facebook and cell phones are not "Manly Men" but Subdivision Yuppies.  He is Superior.

The strange thing is that even though he doesn't watch TV, have a cell phone or computer, he has a TV show, is all over social media and these things are why we even know about him!

3. He believes the Number One attribute in finding a mate is how well can she cook and can she handle preparing fish and plucking a duck.

4. His last chapter in the book is why as a Christian, he is a Republican.  He believes in Guns, not helping those on welfare, and fighting against those who would corrupt the Bill of Rights and the Constitution (because of the right to have guns.

You who know me know that I had a hard time getting through that.

Let me say at this point that I have known the Whites Ferry Road Church for 30 years.  When I attended Garnett Church in Tulsa, we had many speakers and elders from that church at the Workshop and as guests.  This was during the Bus Ministry days.  That church supported missionaries in Brazil that included some from our area.   They are a great group of Christians as are the Robertsons.

I like all. I just don't like all they are selling.

His 12 ways to be Happy, Happy, Happy are ok for some. or even many. just not me as I travel my paths.

Jesus could have cared less about what the Roman Government was doing or if it prevented them selves from taking up arms (swords).  Jesus did not chose fisherman because of their manly fishing skills, he wanted them to establish his church that was to reach out to those on "welfare" and families that had nothing.    Don't give that BUT MIKE the Bible says if a man doesn't work he shouldn't eat!
Yea but it doesn't say anything about his family should not be cared for, etc.

Jesus said:  Happy are the meek.
Jesus said: Happy are the merciful.
Jesus said: Happy are the pure in heart
Jesus said: Happy are the peacemakers.

Happy, Happy, Happy

I bring all this up because I was approached by a Fellow Christian who wanted our minister to wear a "Duck Dynasty" shirt in our corporate worship and point at the Men's photos and state that we should try to emulate them?

I thought that we were to emulate Jesus?

There is much good in Duck Dynasty but much more in the Kingdom of GOD

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Heading to "boldly go" - Star Trek into darkness

Went to see the new Star Trek "Into Darkness".  The Star Trek TV show started while I was in college.  As I mentioned before, we were about to go to the Moon at the time so we figured that what was being shown on Star Trek would be normal life by the time I was sixty.  I did not figure in  several more wars and the society becoming so selfish that any idea of doing something as a nation or planet became the real science fiction.

The new movie is excellent if you are a fan.  This is the second chapter in the reboot of the story and re-introduces us to the ultimate villain, "Kane".   Effects are good and dialogue is fun.  A great popcorn movie with familiar friends to watch.  One nod to great science fiction writers was the naming of one of the new Star Ships, USS Bradbury.  Cool move.

It the end Kirk once again states:  "these are the voyages of the Star Ship Enterprise on a 5 year mission to BOLDLY Go where no man has gone before..........

As Henry Cho's redneck friends once said: "Wheres Boldly GO?"

I give it ***1/2 stars    2013 Movie #18

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Spring clean

I finally decided to clear my closet of anything that I didn't wear last year, my"other" clothes that I hoped to shrink back into and those items that have been there for years ( shoes) for no apparent reason. That was a lot of stuff! I felt good.  

I did have several good suits and sport coats that I bid a fond farewell.

I also am a T shirt collector and must have over 100!  I got rid of about 40 and rediscovered some great shirts that I couldn't even see.

I did keep 2 shirts:   

"Jesus is coming! Look Busy"  &.  "They will know that you are a disciple by their T shirts"

I have read several things about traveling light and every time I practice it I feel better.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Gatsby, the American Story

F. Scott Fitzgerald's Classic American novel just drives people nuts. Since it was written in the early 20th century, its story line has been used as the basis on many movie and tv shows.  Therefore, whenever a movie is made based on the novel, it is panned.  Its like someone on American Idol trying to sing a Whitney Houston song. No matter how good the performance, it is deemed not good enough.

I went to see the latest Gatsby starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Mcguire.  I am a DiCaprio fan and went even though the reviews were bad.  The reviewers always want something new and this is not new.  However the director, Baz Lurmann, used the latest CGI to create a larger than life world of the story of a person who  today would be a multi billionaire.

If you don't know the story it is the story of a man who amasses a giant fortune for the sole purpose of winning the hand of a girl he met 5 years ago that chose to marry another over waiting on him to make it.  
It is about lust, worldly living, and everything that's wrong with the world (just like 2013), seen through the eyes of a young man who lives in a caretaker's cottage next door to Gatsby.

I had seen the Robert Redford version of this movie, and remembered that it was a slow, and dreadful movie.  I did NOT see the Alan Ladd version.

As I watched it, I remembered the Parable of the man who finds and pearl of great worth and sold all he had to possess it.  This story is a man who finds someone he wants to passes and amasses all he can to try to gain her.

I give it *** stars.  2013 Movie # 17

Saturday, May 11, 2013


Iron Man 3

Usually the third movie in a series is the worst. BUT not this time. Iron Man 3 has more humanity, humor and then all the action that a comic book series requires.  Tony Stark(iron man) has great encounters with a small boy and the "evil" villain.  IF you like this kind of movie, it is a "go see".
When I was growing up in the fifties, comic books could do things that TV and the Movies could not do.  It was fuel to my imagination.  

People who go to the movies and want everything to be real with no trickery, miss out on the child like imagination that anything could happen if you dream it. Sometimes, though, it can go too far. (i.e. the preview of  Fast & Furious 6).

Iron Man is fun, witty, and is just a great story.  

I give it ***1/2 stars.  2013 movie #16

Thursday, May 9, 2013

MUD, the Movie

There's a little movie in some theaters called "MUD" and indie film starring Matthew McConaughey as Mud. Other stars include Reese Witherspoon as his girl friend, and Sam Shepard as an old friend.  The dal main character is Ellis, a 14 year old, played by Tye Sheridan.

This story is part Huckleberry Finn, and part Outsiders.  Ellis and his friend "Neckbone" find Mr. Mud on an island on the Mississippi River and befriend him.  Mud is hiding out and they decide to help him.
(Huck Finn).  Ellis is a young teen with urges and wanting to learn about love.  However, his folks who live in a house boat on the river (on the Arkansas side), and Mud is having girl friend problems.
Ellis can't tell if Mud is lying or telling truths.

Mud's girlfriend plays around and every time she finds another guy, Mud beats them to a pulp. Problem is when Ellis learns about MUD he imitates.

This is a slower paced film that catches you off guard.  It took me about an hour, an suddenly I got it.
There is more here than meets the eye.

The movie is PG-13 (no F word).  It is a very different story.

I give it **** stars.  2013 movie #15

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Played Dodge Ball and a Concert Broke Out?

We went to the annual Jimmy Buffet concert in Frisco, Texas.  This year for the first time Jimmy had an opening act. None other than Rock'n Roll Hall of Famer, Jackson Brown ("Running on Empty, Doctor my Eyes").   As much as I looked forward to seeing him, the whole thing was a mistake.  The Parrotheads and their kids bring beach balls to toss around before Jimmy comes out.  Jackson Brown was largely ignored and the sound was not set to compensate for the commotion.  It was sad :(

To say the balls were flying is an understatement. In our section the balls were coming from all directions about one every minute.  When I grabbed one, I hit it into the next section.  It was not fun for me.  I wanted Jackson Browne.

Jimmy Buffet did make it worth while.  Singing songs from his upcoming CD and they were good. Of course, He did his classics,  Though radio still doesn't play his music, after 35 years he still sells 20,000 tickets a night.  

We did get there early enough to tour the tailgate party which is a cross between tailgating, Bourbon Street, and a 15 acre party.  The guy below is normal there.

I'll wait a couple of years before I return.