Archive | January 2011

Radio

There is actually so many things that I want to write about. It’s hard for me to pick a topic to blab on about, but the one thing that’s been on my mind this last week has been the radio.  Is it just me, or is listening to the listening to the radio is more annoying and less entertaining? I am big music fan and I love to listen to music whenever I get into my car. Lately, I’ve just been disappointed.  In the morning there is just so much talking.  To me, it’s just not that entertaining to hear people talk. Sometimes, it can be funny. But most  of the time, it’s stupid and the people who call in to participate, are so ridiculous. They are also always selling something.  Isn’t that what all the commercials are for? Now we have to listen to a pitch about diet products in the middle of a show too? All I want is to turn on the radio and listen to music.

When they do play music, it seems like it’s the same 10 songs over and over again. What’s really irritating is when I change the station, and the same song is on. There is so much good music out there, why do all the stations have to play the same stuff? I wind up getting sick of a song that I really like. Or, a song that I cant stand winds up stuck in my head. I think it’s sad that you have to pay for satellite radio in order to get rid of all the nonsense – most of it at least. My solution is a $70 dollar cord that plugs into my iPhone and my cigarette lighter turning my phone into a radio station that has only the music I like, no commercials, and only repeats songs that I want. It’s not the greatest. It’s hard to find a clear station, especially in a big city. My phone has to be in a certain place to get good reception, and I can’t use the controls on my car stereo to change the music. But to me, it’s still way better than turning on the radio.

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“Red” Movie Review

I’m going to make this one short and sweet. This movie surprised me. It was actually really good. It’s about a retired CIA operative who is on a hit list along with other former CIA operatives he use to work with. It had a great cast: Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich, Mary Louise Parker and Karl Urban. Bruce Willis plays Frank Moses who is trying to live a normal life.  He has a crush on Sarah (Mary LouiseParker) who he talks to only on the phone.  He gets pulled back into his life as an operative when men are sent to kill him one night. He uses his skill and experience to avoid getting killed and goes on a mission to find out why he is being hunted by the CIA.  Sarah becomes a target as well because Frank has been talking to her so he goes to save her.  Even though she is attracted to Frank, she is at first unwilling to believe his story. She soon realizes he is telling the truth and although it is scary for her at first, she finds it all exciting and is happy to leave her boring life behind her and help Frank on his mission.  Frank goes to his old team mates for help bringing Morgan Freeman, John Malkovich, and Helen Mirren’s characters into the picture. There is a lot of action and stealthy moves by these old timers. They are being hunted by a young and ambitious CIA agent Karl Urban’s character.  Even though he is very talented agent, he is soon schooled by the older agents. They were able to sneak into the CIA headquarters and get into the super secret depository and get out.  They find out they are being set up by someone who is helping the Vice President run for office using less than moral methods. In the end, the good guys win with only one sad loss of Freeman’s character who was dying of liver cancer anyways.  The movie was very entertaining and along with some good action, it had unexpected humor.  Malkovich’s character is paranoid and somewhat crazy but was always right.  Helen Mirren’s character would make any feminist proud.  It definitely turned out to be better than I thought it would be. I’d recommend going to see this movie with a group of friends.

“Splice” Movie Review

I’m going to do a recap – so if you don’t want to know what happens – don’t read. This movie stood out – and not in a good way.  We watched it last night. I was actually really looking forward to seeing it. From the previews it looked like an interesting sci-fi movie. I really didn’t know what to expect – and most of the time that’s a good thing.  Sometimes when you have expectations going into a movie, it tends to be disappointing.  I hadn’t seen the previews for a while but from what I remembered, it looked like someone creates a creature by “splicing” dna from different species. That’s what happens in the beginning of the movie, but it didn’t take long for it to get strange.

Adrian Brody and Sarah Polley are the two main actors and characters for this movie.  They are two scientist (and also a couple) who are working on some ground breaking research for some big company.  They create new creatures by splicing dna from several species and they wind up having some medical benefits. Clive (Adrain Brody) and Elsa (Sarah Polley) are very enthusiastic about their work and are very excited that things are going so well.  Elsa wants to take their research to the next level by adding human dna, but the company orders them to stop their research and focus on isolating the gene that has medical benefits from the two previous creatures they created (Fred & Ginger). First of all – Fred and Ginger look like some giant slug/worm creatures. Kinda makes me wonder what they were “splicing” together (the movie doesnt get into details about what species are being used).

Ok so Elsa is the one who starts all the chaos.  You can tell right away that she controls the relationship between her and Clive.  She wants to continue with the research anyways even though Clive has major doubts. For some reason she is obsessed with successfully splicing human dna with other species.  She tells Clive that the dna donor for the human species is a Jane Doe – in truth it’s her dna.  After pulling an all nighter, they are successful.  Clive wants to just store it away, but Elsa decides to put it in some lab created uterus. Clive really doesn’t want to do it, but doesn’t stop the process in time.  It doesnt take long for things to go wrong. They have to deliver the fetus early and Elsa gets attacked by the fetus.  Clive wants to kill it, but Elsa starts stops him.  The “baby” looks like a rat/hamster. It has a tail with a poisonous spike.  Elsa starts treating it like her own child and spends a lot of time teaching it. There is something going on genetically that makes the creature grow and age fast.  In no time it looks like a 5 year old – then a teenager, then a young adult.

Meanwhile, their first two creatures are debuted at some big conference. They were so busy with Dren that they didn’t realize that something had happened to Ginger.  Instead of showing the audience, a new species mating, the creatures attack each other and have a bloody brawl inside their glass enclosure which happens to crash and shatter splashing blood on the people in the front row. Disgusting!! Apparently, Ginger turned into a male and that’s what happens when two males get caged together. Now there is even more pressure for them to find the special gene.

As the movie goes on, it just got weirder and just plain twisted.  They have to take the creature, which Elsa has named Dren (Nerd backwards), to a farm that Elsa’s mother use to own.  You kinda get an idea that Elsa’s childhood wasn’t peaches and rainbows. Clive starts to warm up to Dren.  By this time, Dren is pretty much full grown, but has a mind of a teenager.  She is smart, even though she can’t speak. They kinda give you an idea that she has some sort of telepathic ability. She has a crush on Clive and gets aggressive towards Elsa. After killing a cat and attacking Elsa, she gets her tail cut off (by Elsa). It grows back somehow. Clive feels sorry for her and for some reason has sex with her. The sex scene is just ridiculous with Dren’s wings opening up like butterfly wings. Elsa walks in on them.  She runs off and Clive finds her back at their apartment.  They realize they’ve made a mistake and I guess Elsa gets over what Clive did. The return to the farm to find Dren is dying. They bury her. Elsa is heartbroken. Clive looks a little relieved. His brother shows up with their boss – their secret is blown. Elsa used Dren’s dna to discover the gene containing the protein they had been looking for. It was obvious that human dna was involved. In fact, it had produced an even stronger chemical. While they are getting yelled at, something grabs their boss and throws him in a tree. It’s Dren. She didn’t actually die, she just turned into a male. It attacks Clive’s brother and chases Elsa and Clive around the farm. After pulling Clive into freezing water, it pins down Elsa and rapes her. Clive comes from behind and stabs it but it winds up stinging him and kills him.  Elsa winds up crushing it’s head with a rock.  She winds up pregnant, and the company is paying her to keep the baby to continue the research.

All I have to say is – WTF? I seriously hope they don’t make another one. I think it was just a little too weird and out there. I didn’t like it at all. Who comes up with this stuff? It seriously bothered me.  I really hope that we are not doing this kind of stuff for real. I am not a super religious person, but there are just some things you leave alone. It’s like they’re playing God by creating those creatures. Obviously they weren’t doing it right. It’s one of those movies that make no sense at all to me. If you’re looking for a mind bending, dark sci-fi, and completely different kind of movie – then you should watch this. It just wasn’t my kind of sci-fi movie.

News

Last night, we had the news on. It was more for background noise while we wrapped up the night. We hardly ever watch the news. But it came on after Idol so we just left it on. I guess I just don’t get the point.  To keep us up to date on current events? Does it really help us? I personally think it’s pointless and depressing.

When the news comes on it’s mostly bad news. I’ll use last night as an example. During Idol, there were commercials about the upcoming  stories: It was about a search for a missing 4 year old boy winding up at some canal. It was followed by a clip of a big meeting in a community dealing with school closures.

Ok, so I understand the search for the missing boy story was to help find him.  Get the word out, have people aware of the car and the suspect so hopefully someone can help get the boy home. I have nothing against that. I just had this feeling while I was watching the news, that it wasn’t only to help find the boy. The boy wasn’t in the canal – so why make it sound like that in the advertising? Let’s see… could it have anything to do ratings?? If the search for a missing boy doesn’t get to stop and listen, maybe the story about a community where several schools may be closed will get you to watch. Of course, they don’t mention what community so hey it could be yours.

Watching the story about the schools, just made me angry. Someone seriously wants to close 3 of the best schools to help offset another budget cut in education. Who comes up with these solutions?? I really didn’t pay attention to anything else after that story. It didn’t sound like it was anything more uplifting. In between stories, the weather guy was telling you that he would soon be giving you the forecast.

Do we really need someone to tell us about the weather? And how right are they? The one thing I can see the news being useful for is traffic.  But even that you don’t need to watch the news for anymore. You can get current events, weather, and traffic online now a days. And you can pick what you want to read about – instead of listening to whatever a network wants to put in front of you.  To me, there’s no point in watching the news.

Changing and Growing

Ok so I knew I would not be able to write every day like I wanted, but I’m trying….

Lately, I’ve been thinking about how much I’ve changed or grown since I was kid – mainly since high school. It’s kind of funny to think about it. You know how there are some people that seem to not really change much from high school or college? I think that’s part of growing up.  Some of us, can move on from those days, and some of us can’t.

So for me, I’m comparing my 29 year old self to my high school self. I can’t believe that it’s been over 10 years since high school. I’d like to think that I have changed (or grown) quite a bit. Back then I was very very shy. I don’t really know why, but it’s probably because I was very insecure. I definitely lacked in self confidence. Like most teenagers, I was constantly searching for my identity.

Now, I’m not as shy. I credit my years in the customer service field for bringing me out of my shell. I’m still not a super out going person, but I am more comfortable with meeting new people.  My confidence level has gone up – even though I still struggle with it sometimes. Once I had the love of my life and our beautiful family, I got a big boost of confidence. When I focus on the things I have, I definitely feel like I can do anything.  I now have a firm grip on who I am – a big change from my high school days. But I’ve also learned that people constantly grow and change based on what life throws at them. I am constantly learning new things and working on bettering myself.

I have to admit that I was also very superficial as a teenager. I would get up super early just so I could get my hair and makeup done. I was very preoccupied with what I wore. I didn’t have expensive clothes, but I tried to have the same style as everyone else. Fitting in was so important. Now – there are days when I don’t do anything to my hair or face(besides was it). I’ll throw on a hat and some sunglasses and that’s it. I have more expensive clothes now, but I don’t have to buy the latest fashion trend. I now concentrate on what is comfortable and looks good on me.   On those days, I don’t do my hair and makeup are the days I’ll throw on some comfy sweats, a tshirt, and head out the door. I could care less about fitting in or impressing others. I’ve got the person I was trying to impress all those years, and he says that I’m beautiful without all the makeup and fancy clothes. That’s all I need.

Like most teenagers I also felt as if I was invincible. I was young – the whole world was ahead of me. I didn’t worry about my health. I was no more than 95 lbs through high school.  I stayed up all night and could keep going strong the very next day. I was no big partier or danger freak. I never did drugs. I drank alcohol only at the very end of high school. But it’s that feeling that nothing could happen to me that has gone now that I’m knocking on the door of my 30’s.  I don’t heal as quickly or the same as I did. Every injury takes a big toll on me now. Staying up all night is almost impossible for me. I can do it but it is painful the next day. Still have never done drugs. I am very proud of that.

On the subject of alcohol. I did have drinking days after high school.  I honestly felt that there was no point in drinking if I wasn’t going to get  smashed. But as soon as I became a mom, I pretty much stopped.  When I did drink it was only when the kids were not around. It was extremely rare for me to get drunk. The last time I got really drunk was in Vegas a couple years ago, and it did not go well. Not because I got so sick, but because apparently I have an allergy to alcohol. I had an allergic reaction after the first time I drank, but it never happened again until that trip to Vegas. Now I can’t drink liquor without getting an irritating rash. So now I don’t drink anything besides Pina Coladas. With my allergy and dealing with alcohol problems with family, I no longer think drinking to the point of being drunk is attractive in any way. Drunk people make me laugh.

I am a lot more concerned with my health now. I try to watch what I eat and get plenty of exercise. I am no longer 95 lbs. I don’t think I will ever be 95 lbs again. I get physicals once a year and go to the dentist. I am not a fan of the dentists or going to the doctor, but I would rather prevent something than try to fix a serious problem later on. I hated brushing my teeth and never flossed, but now I brush twice a day and floss every night no matter how late it is. I take care of myself now.

Why didn’t I do it when I was younger? Part of if is because my dad didn’t take us to the dentist of doctor’s unless he absolutely had to. But I think that the biggest reason is because I didn’t know that it was important. I guess I knew, but I didn’t care… I think part of being young is to have that care free attitude. It’s with time and age that we learn what we need and that there is more to learn.

Accepting You

Sometimes when we look in the mirror, we don’t really like the person we see. Why is it so hard for us to accept that person in the mirror? Some people just can’t see their true reflection. There is always something wrong.  There is a wrinkle here, a gray hair there, or some other minute imperfection that only they can see. Some can even look into a mirror and swear that the person they are looking at is 20 lbs heavier – when in truth, they are perfectly fine. I actually know someone who does this and it drives me crazy.  I start to wonder what happened to her to make her see something that is just not there.  Ok, I admit. I do it too.

But why? For me, yes it does have a little to do with self confidence. And I think that’s probably the bottom line for most of us who judge ourselves so harshly in front of a mirror.  So how come I’m not overflowing with self confidence? There is probably some psych mumbo jumbo that could place blame somewhere in my childhood. Society and the media doesn’t help either. I think it’s hilarious that while there is such a big push to promote loving your natural appearance and who you are, they still use the most attractive people to market their products.

Let’s take a look at Victoria’s Secret – which I am a ver big fan of by the way.  Do you see one average or even plain looking woman promoting their product? Ok, so some might not agree that all the VS models are pretty, but they are far from ugly. And how about their bodies? How many of us look like they do when we put on the lingerie? Why don’t they use “normal” women for models? I’m not trying to talk down about those of us who are not super models. But I hope you get what I’m trying to say. The message I get, is “You want to look like these women. They are beautiful. They are sexy.  Buy our product and you can be beautiful and sexy too.”  And how many of us look at those beautiful women and wish we looked like them? How many women do you know that go to outrageous lengths just trying to make themselves look as beautiful as those models?

Now how about the men? Isn’t it a bit hypocritical to say that women should not do so much to change how they naturally look when what catches their eye are those women who look a lot like those VS models? Would a guy even look at you if you went to a club and you looked they way you do in the morning? What men really want are the “naturally beautiful” women. Come on guys!! Give us a break. You want us to be confident with how we look naturally, but you drool over women who look like models. Some of you will even do it right in front of your girl. Yeah, that will make your girl feel beautiful about how she looks. And you wonder why women have a hard time accepting what they see in the mirror.

The truth is, many of us – no matter how hard we try are never going to be as gorgeous as those VS models. Ok, so with plastic surgery, you could do it. How many of us can afford to do that though? I’m not against those who go and get plastic surgery. Honestly, I’ve thought about it myself. The thing I struggle with is that I want to be able to look into the mirror and accept what I look like and say “This is me and how I look. There is nothing wrong with how I look.” I’m not saying that if you’re unhealthy that you don’t do something about it. What I’m trying to say is that, what you see in the mirror is probably not as bad as you think. If you really want to change something, then do it. But don’t lose yourself trying to look like someone else.

 

Resolutions

So it’s a new year and I’m sure many of us have made “resolutions.” Some are big, some are small. Some of us have a long list, some of us have a short list.  There are so many things that we can resolve to improve.  Health, being a major one. From getting in shape to quitting some addictive and destructive habit. There financial, beauty, and personal growth resolutions.  I’m sure there are many other things that people make resolutions for that I could never think of.  But why do we make resolutions? And how many of us actually follow through with our resolutions? How often does our lists of resolutions repeat itself year after year? Is there even a point in having resolutions?

I honestly can’t remember the last time I made a resolution for a new year. I was probably in high school and doing it for some class. I guess I just don’t have much faith in resolutions.  I’ve seen people make resolutions that would greatly improve their lives. But it wouldn’t take long before some excuse came along that would end their efforts in completing their resolutions. Yes, I admit, I am guilty of the giving up on a resolution. But I guess, I’ve never really had a resolution that I was serious about following through.

So again, what’s the point? I think that if you want to change something about yourself or your life, you’ll do it without needing a resolution. But you really have to WANT to change. Otherwise, no matter how many times you put it on your resolution list, it will never get done. And you usually wind up feeling depressed about not having followed through… which doesn’t usually help motivate you into pushing through.

I don’t make resolutions. Not because I don’t have anything that I’d like to change about myself or my life. But I am very happy with my life and I am working on accepting all my imperfections.  I take it one day at a time.  I’ve found that if I don’t spend my time stressed out about how I’m going to lose weight or organize the gazillion things that I need to organize, I enjoy my day and my life more. And so far it’s worked for me.