Let's roll some dice, watch some movies, or generally just geek out. New posts at 6:30 pm ET but only if I have something to say. Menu at the top. email@example.com on Mastodon and @gsllc on Twitter.
I used to have a nervous habit of shaking my leg and can’t count the number of times people have complained about it. I recently noticed that I no longer do it and probably haven’t for years. Based on certain changes I’ve made in my life, that’s not surprising, but its absence snuck up on me; I didn’t notice that I had stopped.
Anyway, the internet read my mind (as we know it always does) and placed a Joe Rogan video in my YouTube shorts stream. The health expert being interviewed mentioned that your calf muscles use an inordinate amount of energy relative to similarly sized muscles, and as a result, you can burn a lot of calories because of that nervous tic. I did some internet research and found several articles confirming these findings. Here’s one with six ways to burn calories.
I have a multitude of posts talking about my weight loss, weight gain, gym time, etc., and now I’m forcing myself to shake my legs with the intent to burn between 50 and 400 calories a day. These numbers represent the lowest and highest estimates I could find. Keep in mind, though, that fidgeting isn’t the solution to a slim waistline. It’s like a multivitamin: It won’t give you everything you need, but as a supplement, it can fill in some missing gaps.
Because I was out of the office on my birthday taking a “continuing legal education” course, most of my coworkers didn’t get to celebrate it. So, they decided to decorate my office, which I saw today.
The first thing I noticed was my wall.
That seems normal enough. The window did as well.
Soon thereafter, as I gazed across the room, I found myself asking, “What the shit?!”
Are my coworkers in love with me?
Wait a second. Why all the pink?
For this next one, here’s some context. Everyone has a nameplate that I designed a couple of years ago. We printed them in black and white, so it’s black lettering and imagery on a white background. Recently, I changed mine to white lettering on a black background. It’s looks awesome, and everyone was jealous (even though I copied it from a coworker that sits at the end of the office where no one sees her nameplate). It’s sort of like going from Adam West’s Batman to Christian Bale’s Batman. Well, Patricia apparently asked, “Why don’t we screw with Rob’s nameplate. He thinks it’s great, so let’s ruin it.” (Seriously, she admitted to it.)
What the shit?
Now, anyone that knows me knows I’m not what’s commonly referred to as an alpha male. I’m kind of an asshole, so sure, I have some similarities, but I’m no alpha male as that term is commonly defined. So, why am I an “alpha attorney”? And even if I am, why is there a Hello, Kitty image beneath it. Someone’s confused (besides me).
Of course, I’m not angry. Despite recent societal trends, I remain focused on people’s intent, and in this case that was trying to be funny and nice. Why would I be angry about anything they did or might do? Still . . . .
Here’s something I haven’t done since the late 90s: Baked a cake.
The top layer is French vanilla, the bottom layer is triple chocolate fudge, and the icing is milk chocolate icing. I even did the same thing with a few cupcakes I was able to make with leftover batter. Surprisingly, the layers came out well in the cupcakes.
I don’t really celebrate my birthday, but I knew I’d have to break my diet today anyway, so I went all in. I think is shows how long it’s been since I did this . . .
Yeah, you read that right. Captain Kirk and William Shatner were both born on March 22. Shatner was born in 1931, and Kirk will be born in 2233. This may be out of place considering that I’m writing this post on May 7, 2022, and who knows what will happen to my captain (or me) between now and then, but I wish them both well . . .
I had a goal to see three movies this past weekend. This isn’t something I’ve ever done, but I wanted a lazy weekend where I didn’t have to do anything. No fixing up the home. No significant work on my 1st Edition Dungeons & Dragons database. Hell, I didn’t even go to the gym, and my martial arts class was cancelled, so no work out. Just pure laziness. I needed the break anyway. Now I’m going to ruin it by, instead of just posting a stupid meme, writing this post. This is far more thinking than I wanted to do this weekend. Yeah, it’s a low bar.
65 Million Years Ago
First up Friday night was 65 Million Years Ago. This movie will not win any Oscars, not even for special effects, cinematography, or costume design, but it’s only about 90 minutes long, which is about how much you can take before wanting to tap out. The story was as original as a movie can be nowadays, and the fact that this ship crashed within a day of the dinosaur-killing meteor hitting the Earth is reasonably explained. It’s still a crazy coincidence, but there’s some sense to it. The movie is, as you probably know, about a spaceship that crashes to the Earth, and so a guy with some sort of hand-held rail gun(?) and hi-tech grenades takes on a bunch of dinosaurs. So, it is what it is, and you all know what it is going into it, so if that interests you, I think you’ll be (just) okay with it. I was.
There were no scenes during or after the credits, but there are some visuals during the first part of the credits that you may want to watch.
Because 65 took only 93 minutes, and Cocaine Bear — only 95 minutes — was about to start, I bought a ticket will sitting in my seat (while the credits were rolling; shut up). Future students in film school will be shown this movie to show them how not to make a movie. The pacing was off. There was a part of the movie that dragged. It was terribly unrealistic, and not at all faithful to the story on which it’s based. None of the characters were sympathetic (maybe one exception). Several bad guys got away, and we were expected to sympathize them. Despite all of that, it was an incredibly fun watch. I don’t regret a single minute of the 95 I spent watching it.
There are two mid-credit scenes.
Knowing that I was going to see this movie, if for no other reason, because Hollywood’s next big thing, Jonathan Majors, is in it, I decided to watch Creed and Creed II this week, and I loved them both. They represented the perfect start to a sequel trilogy. They used Sylvester Stallone, and they followed the basic formula of the good Rocky movies while still carving out their own path, both structurally and artistically. Great idea, and great execution. I was looking forward to Creed III. Unfortunately, this movie was a huge disappointment, which is weird. Besides Jonathan Majors, the backstory is strong as hell. This won’t be a spoiler if you’ve seen the trailers: Majors plays Damian Anderson, a childhood friend of Michael B. Jordan’s Adonis Creed. He took care of Creed, and was the #1 rated amateur boxer ever. (Seriously, he said that in the movie.) Adonis lost his temper and created a bad situation, and when Damian bailed him out, he was the one that got in trouble. He spent 18 years in jail watching Adonis climb to the top, and now he wants revenge. All of this is interesting, and the cast is pretty good, but there’s no Sylvester Stallone, and the execution on the main story is piss poor. It was rushed and unrealistic. Don’t misunderstand me. I can go into a movie like Blade and say, “I’m going to suspend my disbelief and accept vampires exist.” Not everything has to be realistic in that sense, but once you commit to your premise, you have to follow through. You can’t just blow up shit, especially in ways that defy logic, and expect me to roll with it. It was just stupid at times, and I’m too smart for that. Honestly, I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone even if you like this kind of movie.
There are no mid- or post-credit scenes.
Rounding out the month for me are three movies I want to see: Shazam! Fury of the Gods (opens Friday), John Wick 4: Chapter 4 (opens the following Friday), and Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves (opens the Friday after that one). April will be a slow month with only one movie, Renfield, worth seeing in the theater, but then May brings what should be my favorite movie of the year, Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3. June has only two movies of interest: The Flash (June 16) and Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (June 30), so things will definitely be normal after this month.
That, the Washington Capitals, the Winnipeg Jets, and the XFL were the basis of my lazy weekend.
Last week, I shared a random memory of a Tonight Show interview. Today is an interview from Joan Rivers’ Late Show. The link should take you to the relevant part, which is at 5:35. Here, Dave discusses the split with Van Halen and the fallout from it.
Side note: The fact that Rivers took this gig created a personal rift with Johnny Carson.
What I remember about this is that Van Halen — Eddie in particular — was deeply critical of Dave in the press, and Dave always took the high ground. For a while anyway. A couple months after this interview, I heard a snippet from another interview on the radio. Paraphrasing to the best of my recollection (which, based on these posts, is pretty good), Dave’s response to Van Halen was, “Well, I’m out here forging the future, and Van Halen is still living in the pasture.”
Still, I took Dave’s side in the mess because he didn’t fight back until Van Halen pushed him over the edge. Of course, I don’t know any of these guys, so I never really cared about their personal battles. I just knew that they were both producing music I loved, so the breakup worked out great for me.
As a reminder, one of only 14 concerts I’ve ever seen was Hagar and Roth’s joint tour.
Everyone insists they have a good memory, but our brains form fake memories all the time. I’ve used YouTube to test my memory quite often and found that my long-term memory is pretty accurate. The weird thing about my memory is that I sometimes remember things as a mirror image of the way they were. That is, if I remember footage from a TV show where person A is on the left and person B is on the right, their positions are swapped. However, I remember incredible detail about everything else in the footage. Here was a random memory that popped into my head when my cousin shared some footage from Saturday Night Fever. It’s an interview on the Tonight Show with Sylvester Stallone and John Travolta promoting the sequel to Saturday Night Fever, Staying Alive.
And part II.
I remembered almost every minute detail of this interview, and because it’s the Tonight Show, I didn’t reverse the image in my head. The host is always on the right side of the screen, and it’s impossible for a healthy brain to forget that.
Unfortunately, my short-term memory is beginning to suffer, and I sometimes have trouble getting words out when speaking. I also have some difficulty forming new memories. As Kareem Said said on Oz, “Life is balance.” I guess I had this coming, but you can imagine how frustrating that is for someone who historically forgets nothing. While I could stand to lose a lot of childhood and young-adulthood memories, I hope the cognitive decline remains slow.
Tomorrow, I’m discussing memory, so for Caturday, here’s a video on feline memory.
By the way, with all my talk about cats, I don’t own one. However, I bought a house this year, so my tax withholdings were wrong. I’m getting about $2,300 back between federal and state. Hence, I’m buying some cat stuff and getting a cat. Maybe I’ll get two. My understanding is that if they have a playmate when they’re young, they learn the limits of violent behavior. Of course, I’ve always enjoyed “fighting” with the cats I’ve owned, so that’s not too much of a concern.
I have a really annoying habit. Actually, I have several, but this one annoys me. I have to finish what I start. In the context of this post, it means that, once I’ve set my mind to binging the entire run of a television show, I can’t stop until I’m finished no matter how bad the show is. That’s what happened with Scorpion.
Scorpion aired on CBS from 2014-2017, and now you can watch it on demand on Paramount Plus. It centered on a team of underachieving, supra-geniuses who finally get their big break when the Department of Homeland Security designates them a contractor. It started off well enough, and the ratings were some of the best CBS enjoyed during its run. One executive referred to it as “our Big Bang Theory, but as a drama.” However, by season four, the ratings were terrible, and despite a cult following and a tense cliffhanger to end season four, the show was cancelled.
The show was wildly unrealistic. As anyone with a physics degree, a first career in software engineering, and a current career as an attorney can tell you, most shows are. I have no problem with that. You have to enter into any television show or movie with a certain suspension of disbelief, and I’m happy to do so for the sake of drama. After all, despite not being a comics reader, I’m a huge fan of the MCU and DCEU. What could be less realistic?
But this show dives into many different branches of science, and it gets them all terribly wrong. Moreover, while each episode presents a preexisting peril to be solved, while addressing the peril, the Scorpion team members always make things worse, and usually in the most ridiculous or unrealistic of ways. It’s terrible writing that eventually grates on the viewer. Sharks don’t act that way. Computers don’t act that way. Gravity doesn’t act that way. How is it that you’re always getting your jacket caught right before you have to make a getaway? You’ve been on a deserted island for three weeks; how are you all so clean, and why is Cabe still wearing a suit and tie?
As the charm of the show tends to wane, there’s little left to keep the viewer interested. But I have to say, if there were a season five, I’d have watched it.