Eva, and The Rest

29 11 2006

Yesterday I took a very brief trip to Hamilton to visit my sister and her baby. They decided to call her Eva. I love this name. Its etymology traces back to the essence of living. She is understandably tiny at the moment, and I can’t wait to watch her grow up. Didn’t get any pictures, sadly, because we didn’t have a lot of time or space to work with.

I’m planning on spending half of this coming weekend in Hamilton and the other half here in Guelph. I have my first final (Philosophy) on Monday and I plan to get together with some buds on Sunday afternoon for a study group. In the meantime I’m laboriously forcing out one final Languages of the Media paper about YouTube as a cultural phenomenon and important emerging medium. I should be enjoying this more but I’m feeling kind of burned out on assignments. Just about every day I’m thinking of more things I can’t wait to do with my spare time over Christmas.

Pete and I are having conflicting ideas around the projects we want to work on for BeattRock, which is why I haven’t been talking about that. Hopefully we reach a decision soon.

I’m sitting in the library right now, but am probably going to have to change location to my room because I’m running low on battery life. It’s too bad, I like the library…there’s a guy sitting at the table across from me who looks a lot like Vin Diesel. Coolness.


The Very Best Early Christmas Present

28 11 2006

Oh man, my weekend was so awesome. I guess I didn’t do a whole lot, but hey, I had fun. Friday night Pete and I took the same bus back to Hamilton and watched an episode and a half of 24. I couldn’t get into it because it was somewhere in the middle of Season 3 and I’ve only ever seen a couple other random episodes from various points in the time line. It passed the time though. Saturday night we went to see our buddy Luke who we haven’t seen since the summer. Despite how insistent I’ve been about wanting a Wii, playing Gears of War on Luke’s XBox 360 really shook up my plans. The game is graphically beautiful, the sound spectacular, and the gameplay is nice although hard to get into quickly. I imagine the learning curve on it is pretty high, and…

I think it’s interesting to preserve the authenticity of this post, so I’m not changing what I’ve written up to this point, except for the title. I was in mid-sentence at the bottom of the previous paragraph and didn’t finish it because something far more important came up while I was writing it.

Tonight, my sister Rebecca gave birth to a baby girl who wasn’t expected to be born until December 24th. At first I was shocked and concerned but then my mum told me that Rebecca and the baby are fine, both healthy. The baby weighs around 5 pounds. They don’t have a name for her as of yet because, well, they weren’t expecting her for another month. There is not much else to say about it at this point though; I’m taking an emergency trip into Hamilton tomorrow morning to visit them in the hospital. I hope to take a picture, and if I do I’ll certainly post it up. I don’t know about everyone else but I for one am very surprised by this, and at the same time very relieved that everything seems to have worked out. I’ll update on this soon.

I dedicate this post to two people: my niece who has just entered the world, and to my friend Sarah whose comments on this blog have encouraged me to keep writing many times; she is quite sick, and I’m hoping she feels much better soon.

Breaking a Good Hobbit

24 11 2006

I’ve been following the whole tussle between Newline Cinema and Peter Jackson over the filming of The Hobbit. Basically the whole issue was, they had a disagreement over some of the money that The Fellowship of the Ring raked in. This dispute was still going on until recently, when Newline more or less told Jackson, “Look, we’ll let you have it your way, you can have the money IF you sign this contract to film The Hobbit.” And Peter Jackson, whose Lord of the Rings films grossed $2.92 billion worldwide and won 17 Oscars, and whose King Kong remake was funded with $20 million upfront and eventually earned well over $600 million, told them where to go. He and his wife decided they didn’t want to start making a film with that kind of bias behind it. In a letter posted on theonering.net, Jackson said,

When you agree to make a film, you’re taking on a massive commitment and you need to be driven by an absolute passion to want to get the story on screen. It’s that passion, and passion alone, that gives the movie its imagination and heart. To us it is not a cold-blooded business decision.

Newline decided they wanted to get started on making The Hobbit right away, so they’re now seeking out other directors. One person they’re considering is Sam Raimi of Evil Dead and Spiderman fame.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love Sam Raimi’s work, but anyone besides Peter Jackson directing a Lord of the Rings film is an incredibly upsetting prospect. I, along with a bajillion other fans, am really irked about this. Although, there is a reference in this article stating that this matter is probably not over yet, which is somewhat hopeful.



22 11 2006

I’m pretty behind on this story, but the internet’s abuzz right now with conversation about this controversial video on YouTube. I’m going to provide the video but I must warn you that it is rather disturbing and profane. But this is something I think people need to see to be aware of the kinds of things that are going on.

The story behind this is that a 23 year old persian student named Mostafa Tabatabainejad refused (several times) to show his ID in his school library. (I guess under the grounds that the “random check” wasn’t so random and he was being targeted because of his race, he thought.) So he refused to leave the library and the police were called. A confrontation began and they ended up tasering or tasing him (not sure what the correct terminology there is, but the point is they used a taser.) The footage, all shot with a random bystander’s camera phone, shows the cops demanding again and again that the man “get up” and when he doesn’t, (because, of course, the point of a taser is to incapacitate targets) they take it to him again and again. Several students ask the officers for their badge numbers, and near the end one of them tells an inquiring student to back off “or you’ll be tased too.”

Here’s the footage:

As I said, this upsetting footage has been sparking a lot of conversation about police brutality and the use of stun guns, as well as racism. There is also a rumor circulating now that Tabatabainejad provoked the situation on purpose so he could sue the police. I question, though, how he could know that they would use excessive force. That said, it is likely that he was at least looking for a fight of some kind. Well, he got it.

Baby Show and Double Oh

21 11 2006

I want to make a post but don’t really have anything to say. Life goes on as usual. I’m faced with a pretty easy week. I have no major assignments due this week, and no tests. Next week is, I believe, more or less my last week of real classes. Ok, so I don’t actually know at this point, but it might be. I do have a major Languages of the Media assignment due next Thursday though, and that is my primary concern at the moment. I’ll talk about it another time when I have more to say about it.

I had a great weekend. Pete and I hopped on a bus Friday night that took us straight to McMaster. We watched Hard Candy during the ride, which I had already seen but still had lurking on my hard drive. I think it’s a really good movie. Peter’s response was, “it’s so messed up.” That’s pretty accurate. Saturday night, Rockwell and I and Paul went to see Casino Royale. I was apprehensive when I found out that Daniel Craig was the new Bond, because he didn’t strike me as being anything like Sean Connery or Pierce Brosnan. But that turned out not to be a bad thing, because he brought his own things to the performance which is, in my opinion, one of the best skills an actor can have – especially when it comes to playing a character like Bond. People are calling Casino Royale the best 007 movie in years, and while I’m not enough of a James Bond guru to agree or disagree, I can tell you that it’s very, very good. No complaints about the new Bond girl Eva Green either!
After the movie the 3 of us returned to the Rockwell lair and played Poker with almonds as chips.

On Sunday my mom was hosting a baby shower for my sister, Rebecca, whose baby (most likely a girl) is due on Christmas Eve. I told my mum I’d help out, that’s what most of my day was spent doing. During the party I was charged with keeping watch over the toddler-aged daughter of one of the ladies at the party. Alexandra is my sister’s husband’s brother’s little girl. I tried to entertain her with Photobooth, and was interested to see if it actually would capture her interest. (Which I thought would be funny because it suggests that people of all ages love to look at themselves.) She made some faces at herself, and I managed to snap a couple good pictures.

During my spare time on the weekend I enjoyed playing some WoW, and made the first real progress on my druid, Bothar, since I started school in September. I’ve got a big WoW post planned for when he hits 60. Currently, he lies in wait in Thunder Bluff at level 57. The Burning Crusade comes out January 8th, and there is currently a raging debate inside my head over whether I would rather spend money on that or a Wii, or something else entirely.

Fight in Your World, Pay for Ours

18 11 2006

The PS3 has been launched. Outside of WalMarts, Bestbuys and Future Shops across North America, people have rioted, gone into labour, been robbed, beaten, injured, stabbed, shot, and killed. It all makes Sony’s arrogance seem a little more justified. You can buy one for 600 USD…that is of course before taxes, and with only one controller and no games.

More specific stories are available at GamePolitics.com, which is my new source for practically everything. It’s another website Pete showed me, and I’m now reading the new articles pretty well every day. It’s amazing how much drama the video game industry creates in the US alone.
(I’ll add it, along with several other resources to my sidebar link collection sometime…eventually…when I feel like it I guess. It’s just kind of time-consuming and html is my nemesis.)

Even though it’s also on GP, I just have to link to this Foxtrot comic which is such a perfect illustration of the real problem that politicians don’t seem to understand: the fact that there is a rating system (in fact, here’s their website) that parents are seemingly oblivious to.

Random comment: I also read in Heather Armstrong’s blog recently that she was interviewed on CNN…which is pretty cool. I hope I remember to check that out. (Date TBA.)

Dilemma. Naivety Sucks.

15 11 2006

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about this blog and blogs in general lately. The other day it occurred to me how monumentally naïve I’ve been. I thought I could have a blog that people would read if it merely talked about things other than myself. But the truth is, people have lives. They’re not going to read your blog for news that they could just as easily find on Slashdot or someplace else. And building a successful blog that a lot of people read involves a LOT of work. And it’s not as if I couldn’t do it, but I don’t think I’m prepared to. It also involves sacrifice, because writing what a lot of people would want to read wouldn’t necessarily be what I feel like writing about. That’s the dilemma. Write about what I feel like and go mostly unheard, or write other stuff and get more feedback. It’s a tough call.

I thought of starting another blog to maintain alongside of this one, but it would be more professional and on a particular topic. The thing is, I haven’t thought of a suitable topic yet that I would enjoy talking about and that other people would also want to read. So if I think of something, maybe I’ll do that…if not, then maybe not. We’ll see. For the moment I’ll just continue on with what I’ve been doing.

Not looking forward to my Sociology midterm tomorrow. I think it will be easier than the last one though, and I’ll be better prepared. Speaking of being prepared, I ran out of money on my meal plan today. I’m going to find out tomorrow how to get more credit; I probably have to bring them a personal check. If that’s the case I’ll be eating as little as possible for the rest of the week…gotta save my cash for more important things, like this. (4 days ’til release.)