Dave’s Having a Sale

June 29, 2009


A good friend and talented artist, Dave Conrey is having a sale of some of artwork.

From his shop description:

I'm an artist specializing in abstract original paintings. My paintings range in size from large 40"x40" canvases to miniature ACEO original cards. No matter what your budget or the size of the wall you want to decorate, I've got an art piece for you. 

For those with a limited budget, but want the advantage of multiple art pieces, check out my limited edition postcard series #1 (extremely limited quantity).

If you like my paintings, but you want something custom ordered, contact me directly and we can work something out. I'm totally open to all commission projects.

So take a look and consider buying a set of cards or something larger. We all need more art in our lives.

Review: Transformers 2

Skydive and SlingshotImage via Wikipedia

This post contains spoilers if you have not yet seen the movie.

I am a child of the 80s. If my brothers hadn't gotten to them, I would still own the (mint) complete set of Aerialbots that my dad got me for Christmas one year. My first Transformer was Ratchet (even my toys reflected my desire to be a doctor). Then Bumblebee. I had that set until I left for college, when I "willed" it to my youngest brother, because, you know, I was too old for toys.

All that aside, I loved Transformers when it came out because I went into it realizing that it would be nothing like my beloved cartoon. And that's why I love Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen.

Transformers Revenge of the Fallen - IronhideImage by Colony of Gamers via Flickr

The story line continues from the first movie. Unlike Avatar: The Last Airbender, this movie translates fairly well to the screen -- if only taken as a highly action-packed summer blockbuster. Don't expect more from it than that. And that Megan Fox chick has more dialogue. It's cute. Revolves around the "L" word.

I treated my mom and Josh (thus earning me more cool mom points) to Transformers 2 and she loved it so much she's going to see it again. There is a lot to take in visually and it's fairly fast-paced. Basic plot is -- Decepticons are still trying to take over and destroy Earth ("might as well call it 'Dirt' ") and it's up to the Autobots and Witwicky's to save the world. The Fallen is a new element that gets introduced and makes Optimus Prime's involvement extremely important.

You can expect to see pretty holographics, a B-series bomber with an English attitude and great one-liners, lots of explosions, and robots fighting. All-in-all a good flick that doesn't make you think too much (except for the part where the .... see the spoiler alerts)

Spoiler Alerts:
They killed Optimus Prime. Again. "How could they kill Prime???" I almost cried like I did in the orginal Transformers movie. Don't laugh too hard. I was 10 and very empathetic. But they brought him back to life and all is well.

There's a touch of Terminator with Decepticons impersonating humans, and apparently, the robots can switch sides. Wheelie does it (can robots lust after humans?) after the old bomber tells his story.

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The Last Airbender

June 27, 2009

Avatar The Last Airbender

Two years ago my kids got me hooked on Nick's Avatar:The Last Airbender series. The story is incredibly well-written. The kids are reluctant heroes in an ongoing war. They aren't perfect.

Aang is a typical 12-yr-old boy who wants to have fun -- not have the burden of saving the world on his shoulders. Katara had to grow up too quickly. Sokka is Katara's brother, he can't bend any elements, but still wants to be a warrior like their missing father. And then there's Prince Zuko. He undergoes the most dramatic changes throughout the series. Along the way Aang, Katara, and Sokka build their team of elemental benders -- all needed to help Aang fulfill his destiny as the Avatar.

The kids and adults all have their faults, there are people with evil intentions, the desire for world domination, redemption, and a wise old uncle who can breathe fire (it's a trick, you gotta watch the show).

Now, there's a movie being made. Truth be told, I am a HUGE fan of Nick movies like The Rugrats and The Wild Thornberrys. When I heard that they were making a movie version of Avatar, I seriously got excited. And then I saw the trailer.

For comparison, I have posted a fan made video that shows some of the best animated scenes and gives you a good idea of what the show is about. Below that is the official live action trailer.

Here is a fan made compilation:
Align Center

And here is the Official trailer.

Honestly, can Shyamalan make a movie that by all rights should be targeted at Nickelodean's demographic (6-11 yr olds)? Will he mess it up? I have my doubts -- that he will. Just based on the trailer alone, I know there will be plenty of CGI, not that I have anything against CGI. I think this movie would be much better as straight animation like the show, or in 3-D animation (think Pixar). Or they should have gotten Robert Rodriguez, a director who knows how to mix kids, fantasy, and special effects.

Live action just has a way of changing and, unfortunately, destroying cool animated worlds. Just look at Dragonball:Evolution. Even Josh has his doubts when we saw the trailer at Transformers.

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RIP Michael Jackson

June 25, 2009

Jaw. Dropping. Shock. Speechlessness. Deep Sadness.

I don’t want it to be true. How can it be true? I wanted to marry the man (before he got weird). Michael Jackson has been a part of my *whole* life. And now he’s gone at 50. So young. And so suddenly.

I don’t usually get all emotionally torn up over celebrities, I mean, they are celebrities. But when you grow up knowing all the words to all the songs, from the Jackson 5 albums, to PYT, to Thriller, to Bad … on and on. He was an innovator, an entertainer, a pioneer. And his music will be greatly missed.

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Wordless Wednesday: Bowling

June 24, 2009
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Tell Me Thursday: Addiction

June 18, 2009

In yesterday’s Wordless Wednesday I posted a comic from xkcd about internet addiction. What’s sad is that I know I most likely suffer from it, and so do most of my friends. I have been a social media addict since 1994 when I used to hang out on IRC as much, if not more, than I hang out on twitter. (someone should take my phone away from me…). How bad is it?


And I couldn’t even plausibly deny it…

Further confirmation came in the form of a comment on my Facebook profile from one of the aforementioned IRC pals … yeah, I have a problem.

Morning Dumpster Diving

A little humor to alleviate yesterday’s seriousness (I mean really, who takes me seriously?)


As I was getting ready for work my mom sent a text asking me to bring her lunch, she had forgotten it at home. She gave me three locations where it could be. The kitchen counter, the dining table, or her room. Lunch was not in any of those places. We exchanged a few more texts and then she called me. I walked through her whole morning routine trying to find this elusive lunch bag.

Not in the kitchen, not in the fridge, not in her bathroom, not in the living room. By this time my sis had left, so we thought maybe she had grabbed it and taken it to my mom. I waited around the house for a few more while my mom called sis.

No go. Mom decides she’ll buy lunch and chalks the missing lunch up to a case of CRS (Can’t Remember Sh… Stuff). Oh yeah, at some point mom went out to her car to see if it had fallen down the passenger side well or something. Also negatory.

Once it’s decided that Mom will buy lunch I can finally leave (it’s a little after 9 by this point and I’m running late). I get to the street corner, ready to start my commute … and mom calls again. To tell me that she had taken out the recycling that morning. While holding her lunch. She thinks.

I turn around (it’s only a block or so from the entrance to her complex) kvetching the whole time about how I am about to go dumpster diving to find her lunch. Thank goodness it’s only the recycling!!! And lo and behold guess what I found while digging around empty soy milk cartons, juice cans, and other recyclables?

The missing lunch. Still intact in it’s bag. I sure am glad we rinse things out.

Delivered lunch, got a hug, and hit the road. And still made it to work mostly on time.

Moral: Don’t take your lunch out with the trash.

thinking out loud

June 17, 2009
I need to get this off my chest before I forget. Forgive me, it's a little stream of consciousness as I let my thoughts wander from one tangent to another

I've been thinking a lot about the concept of love lately. We blame Love for all sorts of stupidity.

4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8Love never fails.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a

I will admit, I have done some stupid things in the name of love. I'm considering doing another.

Because love is forgiving, I have chosen to turn a blind eye to things that are hurtful to me. Because love is long-suffering and sacrificial, I have sacrificed myself -- who I am. Because it does not envy, I swallow my jealousy and pride and consider courses of action and thought that I know in the long run will subsume who I am and return me to the dark place where I was. Simply existing, trying to make the best of things, putting on a mask to hide the pain.

Love should not cause pain. Yes, when you love someone you open yourself up to the risk of being caused pain -- of being hurt. But the choice of loving someone should not cause pain. Proving to them and to yourself that you love someone should not be a reason to sublimate your natural urges to express your love. Not being able to show love, and to trust the one that I love causes pain. Not being able to trust someone who says that they love me also causes pain.

By the way, I am talking about all sorts. Not just romantic. agape | storge | philia | eros

I love whole-heartedly, with abandon, when given the chance. Some people know this, some have experienced it. Some have taken advantage of it or taken it for granted.

I'm tired of being taken advantage of. And yet. And yet I can't bear to see the people I love suffer in any way if I know I can help them. Catch-22.

'Til I do something evil to make them hate me.

Have you ever wondered at how quickly love can turn to hate?

I can't hate. It's just not in me. Even when I have every reason to. I get angry for a little bit and then I let it go.

And this time, rather than try to hang on, and feel resentment later, I think I will just let go.

More later ... this took a turn I wasn't expecting ...

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Wordless Wednesday: Addiction

Wordless Wednesday: Sittin on the dock of the bay...

June 10, 2009
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Beef Broccoli

June 8, 2009

This was Sunday dinner. Again, it passed the taste-test of my picky, semi-vegetarian niece.beef_brocooli

1 lb beef, cubed
16 oz pkg frozen broccoli cutlets
1 red bell pepper, diced
optional – mushrooms
2 teaspoons oil

1/3 cup water
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger


  1. Mix all sauce ingredients together, set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a frying pan or wok, add beef. Cook until browned
  3. Add bell pepper, broccoli and sauce
  4. Turn heat to low and cook for 20 minutes
  5. Serve with rice. Serves 6

If you prefer a thicker sauce, you can thicken it with flour or cornstarch in the last few minutes.

Ground Turkey Casserole

June 1, 2009
Mouthwatering MondayKid-tested. Mom approved. This is a very basic casserole dish that can be added to and adjusted in many different ways. My picky 4-yr old niece loves it this way though. Just add veggies on the side.


* 1 pound ground turkey
* 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
* 1 (8 ounce) container sour cream
* 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
* 1 (12 ounce) package uncooked egg noodles
* 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
* salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, season and sauté the ground turkey for 5 to 10 minutes, or until browned. Drain the turkey, stir in the tomato sauce, and set aside. In a medium bowl, combine the sour cream and cream cheese. Mix well and set aside.
3. Cook noodles according to package directions. Place them into a 9x13-inch baking dish, then layer the turkey mixture over the noodles. Then layer the sour cream mixture over the turkey, and top with cheese.
4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 20 to 35 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Bon apetit!

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