Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A true "Oh Crap" moment....

I have half a mind to turn in my "Movie Buff" membership card. I can't believe I made the mistake of forgetting about a movie I was so interested in seeing when I first heard it was being made. The movie I'm talking about is Predators. Robert Rodriguez is taking a stab at the Predators franchise. Given some of the movies he has under his belt (Planet Terror, Sin City, Desparado), I truly think he can bring the Predator film series back to it's rightful status of FUCKING AWESOME!!!

Now about the title of this particular blog post. Every predator fan out there knows the shock of terror and glee when those tell tale three red dots appear on someone. Once you see them, you know that person's dead. And you're glad it's not you!!

In the trailer for the new Predators, Robert Rodriguez gives us a classic "OH SHIT" moment, where Adrien Brody doesn't have one set or two or three.... Check out the trailer below. Look for the "Oh Shit" moment at the 1:30 mark...

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The end of Numb3rs??

I wouldn't normally think so, but I'm starting to believe that I tend to watch bizarre television. Most of the shows that do manage to gain my interest are intelligent, detail-oriented shows that consequently don't last very long on tv. Dollhouse, Eyes, Terminator:The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Shark, Justice, Firefly, Raines, Daybreak, Drive, Brimstone. But enough shows do manage to stay on the air long enough to make watching tv worth it. One of those shows is Numb3rs.

To put it succinctly, Numb3rs is a series about FBI using advanced mathematics to aid in their investigations. The show centers itself around two brothers Don & Charlie Eppes (played by Rob Morrow & David Krumholtz respectively), Don works for the FBI, and Charlie is a genius mathematician at CalSci. Over the course of the show, the two brothers overcome their childhood estrangements, expand and grow into more respectable people, and solve a great many cases using mathematics in exceedingly creative ways.

This past Friday marked the end of the sixth season of Numb3rs. Rumors among those in the tv industry say that this is most likely the end of the series, given the drop in ratings this year and the fact that CBS cut their episode order from 22 to 16 for this season. The end of this season, while in no way ending the show with any kind of finality, felt like the end of the series. Characters started planning to move on to other things, the FBI team that had become such a cohesive crime solving machine lost some of its parts, and the events lead the viewer to think that this is where these people's lives diverge away from us. The producers of the show aimed to make this a satisfying finale for the series if they don't get picked up for next year, and they succeeded. They ended the show in the only logical way for the characters. Life goes on. Things keep happening, there's always a tomorrow.

Now, there is no official indication that Numb3rs is over. CBS says Numb3rs is in strong contention for a 7th season, and I hope the show gets the green light for another season. But, it just feels like it's over. And I'm saddened to see it go.

Thoughts On... Blogging

A couple of days ago, one of my favorite shows came back after a relatively long time on break. The show is House MD, and while I could go on for awhile about why the show is so awesome, that's beyond the scope of this essay. Suffice it to say that one reason I enjoy the show is because they tend to bring up intriguing topics to think about & discuss. This past ep brings up the idea of blogging and the effect it has on people. Both those who blog AND those who read blogs.

The patient in the last ep is a woman who is an avid blogger, who spends a good portion of time posting every detail of her life to her blog for public consumption. Including a fight she had with her husband, and all the issues with her treatments as events in the ep play themselves out. It was brought to a focal point, when she had to choose between two options for heart surgery and left it up to the opinions of her readers which option she would take. A decision that could determine whether or not she would be able to have children in the future.

Is it right to live your life so openly? Posting personal information not only about yourself, but also about those people who matter in your life? A friend of mine believes that losing yourself in a crowd of people can be therapeutic, and I agree. There is a balancing nature in hearing the varied opinions of the people around you in regards to the events you're dealing with in your life. But at what point does it stop being therapy and becomes a place to hide from making decisions on your own?

That's a huge danger of living life publicly. At a certain point, the pressure of your "followers" can overwhelm you into making decisions you wouldn't make under normal circumstances. Think about the example of the lady in the House ep. She was willing to make a decision that could prevent her from EVER having children based SOLELY on the input of her readers. And not what SHE thought was best for her. It's the difference between asking for advice & opinions from others and having your own thoughts overridden by the whims of the masses. Seriously, should you live your life according to the whims of your blog readers? People you don't know, and have never met??

And then there's the consideration of other people you mention in your blog posts. By putting them in your blog, you're taking away a part of their privacy. In today's modern world, there's an expectation of a small amount of public exposure. For example, my friend who has his own blog. I can safely reference anything in that blog, because it's already in a public forum. But at what point should the line be drawn. Would an argument between myself & my friend belong on my blog? It's part of my life, right? For me, I would leave it out, or if I did put it in, make the other person's identity as general as possible to protect their privacy. After all, no one likes unwanted public exposure. The ep mentioned that privacy is a modern concept since people lived in communities so small that it was impossible to keep secrets, but I disagree. If that were true, people would not have lived in in separate, discrete houses. The desire for privacy has been around for a long time. In fact, I would venture to say that it's a primal need. History is chock full of people going off on their own to discover themselves, or for adventures, or just for the solitude.

But when does blogging become too ridiculous? The woman in the ep says that she likes blogging because it's an avenue into how someone thinks and what they are thinking at any given time which, in her mind, makes for a stonger bond between her & her followers, or her and whatever blogger she's into at the moment. She actually stated the fact that she hated that her husband didn't have a blog, hated not knowing what he was thinking. To which I thought, why not just ASK him? Why not just SPEAK to him? To further illustrate the point, another scene in the ep has the blogger lady typing in a post, while a friend and reader catches up on the latest postings WHILE BEING IN THE SAME ROOM! They're in the same room together, and they're communicating via text on the screens of their respective laptops!! One has to ask, is the pseudo-public venue of blogging really a connection? Or is it just another virtual world we lay onto the reality around us to make it more palatable?

Friday, March 12, 2010


A long time ago, Charles Darwin came up with the idea of evolution. He saw that, over time, creatures of all kinds grow & change to suit their environments. Those creatures that stop changing eventually die off, so he rightly concluded that the key to any species' survival is its ability to adapt to its changing environment. While at the time Darwin received a great deal of ridicule on the subject, humanity has come to see the truth in Darwin's statemetns and to marvel at how universally POWERFUL his conclusions are. Today, I marvel at how much a person can adapt to their ever changing surroundings.

I've been employed at Single Digits for a little over a month now, and I'm surprised at the fact that I've grown so accustomed to circumstances which I find so intolerable. I don't have a car, yet through rides from buses, cabs, and my sister I've been able to make it to work on time (actually an hour or so early) to each and every shift. In the beginning, I was completely terrified about having to take calls all day and potentially doing something terribly wrong and destroying either a customer's machine or a hotel's network. (I know how dangerous having just a little information can be.) Now, it's becoming routine and almost boring. Yesterday, the application used to monitor the networks and document incoming calls went down for the SECOND time since I started. The first time served to enhance my fears exponentially, but yesterday all I felt was anger & frustration that the tool I use to do my job wasn't available.

I hadn't realized exactly how accustomed to this place I've become until after my shift last night. This place isn't my ideal job in ANY way and I dream of the day when I get back to writing code for a living again, but I can deal with it. Things will be a bit more of a struggle, but WELL within my levels of tolerance. I hope that someday soon I'll be able to get out of here be a software developer, but I've adapted to this place, and I'll be able to survive here. And I find THAT most amazing of all.