"So Let it Be Written... So Let it Be Done"

The life and times of a real, down to earth, nice guy. A relocated New Englander formerly living somewhere north of Boston, but now soaking up the bright sun of southwestern central Florida (aka The Gulf Coast). Welcome to my blog world. Please leave it as clean as it was before you came. Thanks for visiting, BTW please leave a relevant comment so I know you were here. No blog spam, please. (c) MMV-MMXV Court Jester Productions & Bamford Communications

Monday, June 29, 2009

Just what you wanted to know

It's been a long time coming. And I knew you'd want to know this.

Big Brother 11 premieres on CBS in just 10 days.

That's Thursday, July 9th at 8:00 PM EDT, in case you were wondering.

I wonder what this crew will be like. Who to like, who to dislike, who to root for and who to root against.

I didn't watch seasons 1-8 of Big Brother. Now I'm getting into my third season of watching - though I won't go so far as to get the live 24/7 feeds.

I like Big Brother, but not that much.

A refresher: Dan (in black) was the winner of BB10. Memphis finished second and Keesha, who got screwed over at the end, finished third.

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Sunday, June 28, 2009

Billy Mays (1958-2009)

When will the madness stop?

Television pitch man extraordinaire Billy Mays, 50, died this morning in his Florida home. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

Mays hawked a variety of products over the years on television, especially the "Oxi-Clean" line of products. Though his booming voice could be grating (seemed like he pitched everything) there is no question that the guy could sell stuff and, judging by the volume of items he pitched, was good enough at it that it made him a millionaire.

It will be interesting to see what the official cause of death will be. The guy was a month or so older than Michael Jackson, who died last Thursday. Whassup with all these 50 year old people dying?

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Saturday, June 27, 2009

SNMR 6.24: "Easy Living"


Tonight's SNMR feature is "Easy Living" (1937, NR, 88 minutes, B&W), starring Jean Arthur, Edward Arnold, Ray Milland and Luis Alberini. The film was directed by Mitchell Leisen.

PLOT SUMMARY: In the right place at the right time is exactly where Mary Smith (Arthur) happens to be when an expensive mink coat falls on her head from the sky as she's sitting on the top floor of a double decker bus. Actually, the coat was thrown off of the balcony by an angry J.B. Ball (Arnold) because it was purchased by his wife without his knowledge and despite the fact that she has a closet full of mink coats. Ball is the Bull of Broad Street, a wealthy banker and stock broker whose son (Mlland) doesn't want his father's money, preferring to make it on his own. Soon all kinds of weird things begin to happen to Smith, because she is assumed to be J.B. Bull's mistress.

MY OPINION:This DVD is highly touted as one of the best screwball comedies of he 1930's and perhaps of all time. It's a good comedy to be sure, but hardly the best ever. The situation is highly improbable, and it works on the premise that these coincidences or accidents happen in a snowball effect, one after another after another. Jean Arthur has quickly become one of my favorite actresses. While I think she's been better in other movies, she does a fine job here. I've seen a few of Edward Arnold's films and the jury is still out for me on how good of an actor he was. This is the second movie that I've seen with Ray Milland in it. He seems to have been a good actor but I haven't seen enough of his work to tell for sure.

If you've never seen this movie before, that's fine - neither had I. It's not my favorite movie, but at 88 minutes of run time, it's short enough to be a worthwhile rental. Check it out if you can find it.

*** out of *****

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Michael Jackson (1958-2009)

Michael Jackson, 50, died at UCLA Medical Center this afternoon. He died of apparent heart failure after collapsing in his home, though no official cause of death has been released. The LA Coroner's Office will perform an autopsy and determine the official cause of death.

No matter your feelings toward Jackson - BUT love him or hate him - you can't deny that the music industry has lost a legend and an innovator. A void that will not easily be filled. You must give the man his due for the impact he had on the music industry.

I've never been a huge Michael Jackson fan, but there are occasions when I enjoy his music. Even better, some of Weird Al Yankovic's best songs were parodies of Jackson's songs, like "Eat it" and "Fat" to name a few. I think there are more but can't think of them.

Personally, Jackson creeped me out. He was one weird, messed up individual.

One of the questions that will never really be answered is the child molestation charges and trial Jackson had a few years ago. Did he or didn't he? Yeah I know he was acquitted but- so wasn't OJ. And you don't think for a minute that he was innocent, do you?

The saddest part for me about Jackson's death was his age. Fifty is still too young to die. He was not quite eleven years older than me. Kind of scary to think of dying that young....

Here's the story from the Los Angeles Times reporting on Jackson's sudden death.

Here's an update on the casue of death, still under investigation.

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Farrah Fawcett (1947-2009)

One of Charlie's original Angels is now an angel herself.
Farrah Fawcett, 62, died earlier today in Santa Monica, California, after she lost her long and much publicized battle with Cancer.

Many teenage boys had Farrah's famous red swimsuit poster (shown at right) on their wall in the late 70's and early 80's. I might have been one of them.

Fawcett gained fame with 1976's smash television show "Charlie's Angels," starring along with Kate Jackson, Jacklyn Smith and the voice of Charlie, John Forsythe. She surprisingly left the series after the first season to pursue a film career which never really took off. She did earn an emmy nomination for the made for television movie "The Burning Bed" (1984), in which she played an abused wife.

CNN is sharing quotes from friends who knew and worked with Farrah, including her Angels co-stars, Smith and Jackson.

Last year I bought the first and second seasons of Charlie's Angels on DVD. I'll bet that DVD sales of that show will increase in the next few days due to her passing.

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XL

Happy Birthday to me.




Yep, I've reached the big 4-0. And I couldn't be happier about it. The decade of my 30's started out real good with the birth of my son, but after that it was pretty much a crappy ten years. Easily the worst decade of my life, so far.

What will my fifth decade of life bring? I have no idea but I'm ready for it. Bring it on.

No mid-life crisis here. Nope. Sure I'm not where I want to be personally or professionally, but there's plenty to look forward to. Life is just too good.

Yeah, I'm generally an optimistic person.

What am I doing today? Aside from one errand that I've got to do this morning, which I may blog about at some point, absolutely nothing. Well, nothing else is on the schedule, let's put it that way.

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Ed McMahon (1923-2009)

Ed McMahon, 86, died today, apparently from complications from bone cancer and pneumonia. The official cause of death has not been released yet.

McMahon was born in Detroit, MI but grew up in nearby Lowell, MA.

I wonder if, when Ed got to the pearly gates, St. Peter announced his arrival like this: "Heeeeeeeeeeeeeere's Ed!"


Or maybe, upon his arrival at the pearly gates, St. Peter handed Ed a Publisher's Clearing House direct mail piece/ sweepstakes packet, complete with full color ads for all of the useless crap PCH peddles to get you to enter their lousy contests. I wonder if Ed's picture was on the outside of the envelope... St. Peter then says to Ed, "You can't enter (heaven) if you don't enter the sweepstakes." or maybe, "no purchase necessary to enter (heaven)."

Or maybe not.

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Summer solstice

Summer in the northern hemisphere officially begins now. Happy am I when my favorite season is here!

We opened the pool yesterday at my parents house. Even though the water was c-c-c-c-old and there was some algae at the bottom of the pool, it looked awfully good.

Oh, yeah. Happy Father's Day to all those of you to whom it may apply.

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Saturday, June 20, 2009

SNMR 6.23: "Paul Blart Mall Cop"

Tonight's SNMR feature is "Paul Blart Mall Cop (2009, PG, 91 minutes) starring Kevin James, Jayma Mays, Keir O'Donnell, Bobby Cannavale, Stephen Rannazzisi and Shirley Knight. The film was directed by Steve Carr.

PLOT SUMMARY: Paul Blart (James) keeps trying and failing the test to become a New Jersey State Police officer due to his hypoglycemia. So instead he is a security officer at a mall. A job he takes very seriously. Way too seriously. When the mall is taken over, on Black Friday, by thieves who are trying to steal the access codes to the stores credit card machines and thus steal all of the money brought in on the busiest shopping day of the year, it's up to Blart to outwit the bandits, save the day and get the girl.

MY OPINION: V, M and I saw this movie in the theater back in February and again last night on DVD. I must say it's a better movie than I thought it was going to be. Yeah, I realize the plot sounds corny, but that's only because it is. The main reason I wanted to see this movie in the theater and own it on DVD is because the mall that the movie was filmed in is the very same mall that is in the town I grew up in. I also watched one of the scenes being filmed (and actually was standing no more than 250 feet away from Kevin James in the crowd of non extras who were watching the proceedings) which was quite cool.

Is this the best movie I've ever seen? Certainly not. But it is what it is - a screwball comedy - and good fun, too. Steve Carr does a decent job directing and the cast is good - but not great. The most annoying thing for me about this movie is why did it have to be set in New Jersey? Couldn't they have found a nice mall actually in New Jersey to film in? Or couldn't the story have taken place in Massachusetts where the mall is actually located?

Anyway, this is a silly movie with a nice ending. Sure, go ahead and rent it or borrow it from your library.

*** out of *****

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Saturday, June 13, 2009

SNMR 6.22: "Charlie Bartlett"

Tonight's SNMR feature is "Charlie Bartlett" (2007, R, 97 minutes), starring Anton Yelchin, Robert Downey, Jr., Hope Davis, Kat Dennings and Tyler Hilton. The film was directed by Jon Poll.

PLOT SUMMARY: Charlie Bartlett (Yelchin) is a seventeen year old rich kid who has been thrown out of many private schools. His mother (Davis) decides he should try a public high school for a change. When he does, he's not popular and virtually unknown. After being beat up by the school bully, Charlie reads up on psychological behavior and begins to give advice to other students and prescribe medications to them that he gets prescribed to him by his family's on call shrink. Suddenly Charlie is the most popular kid in school and attracts the eye of Susan Gardner (Dennings) who happens to be the daughter of the most hated man in school - Principal Nathan Gardner (Downey, Jr.).

MY OPINION: I had seen the previews for this movie on several recent DVD's I've watched. The movie looked interesting but nothing I'd go out of my way to get. Then when I realized that the title character is played by Anton Yelchin, who also happens to be Checkov in the new Star Trek movie and a young Kyle Reese in the new Terminator movie, that ratcheted up my interest in this movie considerably.

This movie has been compared to Ferris Bueller's Day Off for the student - principal relationship that each film has. But that's as far as I'll go with the comparison. Ferris Bueller was the ultimate 80's high school slacker film and still a classic. This movie takes a more serious turn towards the second half of the film. Hope Davis makes for an excellent ditzy but well intentioned mother and Robert Downey, Jr. is very good as the beleagured principal who gets tired of hearing the name Charlie Bartlett. Yelchin and Dennings performances are so-so.

Jon Poll has an impressive history as a comedy director, having helmed the last two Austin Powers movies and the two Ben Stiller films Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers. He does a good enough job with this movie but doesn't show us anything we haven't seen before.

This movie is decent for a rental, but I wouldn't go out of my way to own it.

*** out of *****

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Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Yanks for three at Fenway

The New York Yankees visit Fenway Park for a critical three game series beginning tonight, with first place in the AL East on the line. The Yankees come into this series in first place, up by one game in the division over the Sox.

The Red Sox have swept the series so far in 2009, winning the first five of the eighteen game season series. While that's impressive, it's a streak that can hardly be expected to continue much longer. The Yankees are too good and the rivalry too intense for that.

The pitching match ups for the series go like this:

Tuesday, June 9th: at Boston 7, New York 0
Burnett (4-2) v. Beckett (6-2)
WP=Beckett (7-2), LP= Burnett (4-3)

Wednesday, June 10th: at Boston 6, New York 5
Wang (0-3) v. Wakefield (7-3)
WP=Wakefield (8-3), LP=Wang (0-4), SV=Papelbon (15)

Thursday, June 11th: at Boston 4, New York 3
Sabathia (5-3) v. Penny (5-2)
WP=Saito (1-0), LP=Sabathia (5-4), SV=Papelbon (16)

Wow, 8-0 vs. New York so far in 2009. Something like this hasn't happened in the Sox-Yankees rivalry since 1912, when the Red Sox won the first 14 games of the season against the New York Highlanders, including the first ever game at Fenway Park.

As always, the post will be updated after each game with the results and link to the recap and box score.

After this series, the teams next hook up for a four game tilt at the New Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, August 6-9.

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Today is the beginning of year five of this here wonderful slice o' blog heaven, which began June 9, 2005. I've never had to delete anything or change URL's since day one. All 1,000+ posts are available in the archives on your left. Please indulge yourself! Happy reading.

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Last but certainly not least, today is my little sister's 26th birthday. Happy Birthday, C!

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Saturday, June 06, 2009

SNMR 6.21: "27 Dresses"

Tonight's SNMR feature is "27 Dresses (2008, PG-13, 111 minutes), starring Katherine Heigl, James Marsden, Malin Ackerman, Judy Greer and Edward Burns. The film was directed by Anne Fletcher.

PLOT SUMMARY: Jane (Heigl) is the boss' (Burns) assistant and right hand woman. She's also secretly in love with him. It's such a big secret that everyone knows, except the boss himself. Jane also loves weddings and has been a maid of honor at twenty-seven of them. She does everything for the brides to be and can't say no to any of them. She also loves the wedding columns from the Sunday paper written by Malcom Doyle (Marsden). When her sister Tess (Ackerman) comes to town for a visit it's all good until she falls for Jane's boss - and he falls for her, or thinks he does. It's Jane's worst nightmare that she's asked to be the maid of honor at her sister's wedding to the man she pines for. Meanwhile Jane meets Kevin at one of the weddings she's attending, but can't stand him because he's so cynical about weddings and the "billion dollar" wedding industry. Sure enough Kevin keeps showing up where Jane is and the sparks (and jabs) fly.

MY OPINION: The title of this movie raised my eyebrows as I wondered if the movie itself was going to be any good. I had never seen Katherine Heigl in anything and legitimately wondered how god an actress she is. (No, I don't watch Grey's Anatomy). Turns out, in this romantic comedy she's pretty good. I had never seen James Marsden in anything until the month that I first watched this movie - suddenly he's in everything! (I had also watched "Enchanted" and "Superman Returns" that same month; Marsden was in those movies, too.) Malin Ackerman, who I'd never seen in anything before this is great as the bridezilla sister. Edward Burns gives a steady deadpan performance, which nicely plays off of Heigl and Ackerman's characters.

What you have here is a smart, intelligent and funny romantic comedy. Sure the story is sappy and somewhat predictable- that's what romcoms are all about! The script is well written and had some good one-liners in it. Detroit native Anne Fletcher, in her second directorial effort, does a good job of not letting the story get bogged down.

The DVD extras were also enjoyable.

**** out of *****

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Thursday, June 04, 2009

David Carradine (1936 -2009)

David Carradine, 72, apparently committed suicide yesterday in Bangkok.

Why would anyone want to take their own life? I'll never understand that. If it's true, then that's too bad.

My most impressionable memory of David Carradine came when he played the totally despicable South Carolina plantation owner Justin LaMotte in the 1985-1986 television miniseries "North and South" & "North and South Book II."

He was good in the "Kill Bill" movies, which I reviewed over on BIG screen last year.

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Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Overkill

I've noticed that when I do some things, I take them to the extreme. Call it overkill, if you will.

For example, I tend to buy too many books and DVD's. Can never have too many books (or movies) I say. I say this to V and M constantly.

Going on a trip, do I pack lite? Oh, no. Gotta make sure I have enough clothes to cover all weather situations.

Staying at K's house over the last month or so on the weekends, I brought way too much stuff with me. Stuff to do in case I got bored. I hate being bored. Most of it I never even used.

Save stuff? Oh, yeah. Big time. Some would call it clutter. I could probably throw away a lot o stuff and not miss it - not even know it's gone. Problem is, I get the feeling that as soon as I throw something away, I'm going to need it. So if I save it I'm assured of never having to deal with it again.

My latest bout of overkill has to do with my current job dissatisfaction. Can't stand my job right now. Dread going to work every day - too much stress there I don't need. Anyway, I've been updating my resume recently and have been (passively for now) looking for another job. On Sunday night I was surfing around on amazon.com and found some books about job seeking, career matches and networking. So good did they each sound that I couldn't decide which book would be the most helpful. So I bought nine of them. Nine! Spent $103.00 on all these books I may only use/read/need once.

Now the question is, which one do I read first?

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