Snowden

Oliver Stone’s film about Edward Snowden truly sums up what it’s like to be a young American growing up in the wake of 9/11.  Must of us formed our political opinions from that event, and besides some like me caught in the middle ground, we went to either one extreme or the other in our opinions of this country and the state of it at the time.

Joseph Gordon-Leavitt’s portrayal of Snowden is terrific, and paints a great picture of the man, who went from an Army boy, who got injured at training and had to take his leave, who finds himself working for the CIA and the NSA, creating computer programs that he imagines will be for the betterment of the world and the security of what he believes to be the “greatest country in the world,” and which instead are used to create a global network of fear, paranoia and alienation.  Obsessed with numbers and figures, it takes a while for him to burst free of his own bubble, and do what any true Patriot should do, following the tenets that this country was founded upon.  That is to tell the truth to the American people.  If there is no truth, there is no trust.  Without trust, there is no America.

We should never be afraid to do what we like and like what we do, without worrying about big brother reading every personal email, listen to every personal call, and to watch us on our webcams that are supposed to be off.  If you are reading this, I hate to break it to you, but your ostracized companion is and always will be an American hero.

And everyone else, please check out this movie, it is probably one of the most important things you will ever watch this year.

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Debates

Did I watch the debate last night?  Of course not.  Besides, I had work last night.  If the political process is so pivotal to us, should we like have it off or something?  Why not?  Also, I already have made up my mind, and that’s that.  Also Trump isn’t funny anymore, and afraid or not of President Trump, it won’t help me to watch him do his thing yet again.  It’s gotten old.

And In Regards To My Last Post…

My latest netflix binge is The Walking Dead.  I know what anyone reading this might be thinking:  Where have you been for the last five or six years?  I haven’t been anywhere other than in a world where I have yet to watch this show.  TV is watched differently than it used to be, now that everything can be streamed downloaded, bought on DVD.  If you don’t have cable you don’t watch most shows until they’ve been on for a while, and if you do have cable, you probably end up having to download it and watch it later anyway right? Or DVR it?  I don’t have cable, so I usually just wait to watch things all in one go when they appear on video, digital download, or streaming services such as Netflix.

If a show is hyped up to an extent that this show is, it’s harder for me to take the time to start watching it, or to get into it.  I’m too worried about what others’ reactions might be if I end up hating their beloved show, or if I end up loving something as much as someone else hates it.  TV seems to be a polarizing topic these days, more than actual issues.  In an election year, this probably isn’t a good thing, but that has nothing to do with what I’m writing about.

The Walking Dead is good, but I feel like the first couple episodes are a bit on the slow side for today’s average TV watcher.  But I”m glad something this edgy, this gritty, this violent, can become so popular.  Genre Television has never had such a good chance as it does these days to prosper.  And this show has everything: comedy, car chases, blood and guts, touching family drama, medical procedures gone wrong, people struggling to survive after the end of the world, and gorgeous scenery.

Zombies are all the rage, so it’s no wonder that the zombie phenomenon that keeps building momentum with no end in sight is crafted with quite the clever amount of brain work.

When You Decide It’s Time To Watch a New Show on Netflix…

There is so much internal debating on whether to take a chance on something everyone has been raving about for years, or the latest original series that is currently trendworthy, or heading for parts unknown, and watching something nobody you know has ever talked about, it sometimes takes forever to even choose.  I’m sure everyone has been there.  You sit for an hour scrolling through movies and shows, and then you possibly give up and decide to do something else.

If you do make up your mind and pick from one of the three options I have just described, you are either in for a treat, or in for being bummed out by how awful or how boring something is.  You decide in your wisdom to pick a show that has been on for years, and you have always been encouraged to watch by those around you.  You watch the first episode, hoping that you like it, and hoping that if you don’t, that you can at least figure out how to avoid telling everybody you know just how dumb it was, or how much you hated it.  But hopefully you love it, because that makes everything easier.  Someone finding out you hate it will always decide that there’s something up with you for hating something everyone loves.  But what if you like it but don’t love it?  That’s even trickier.

Sometimes I’m left wanting more.  “That’s it?  And you think that’s the best show?”  I might say to my friend.  Everything being so hyped up and overblown, you already have been tainted so much by their reactions, that if you react differently it just makes you feel like some kind of pariah.

What if you pick the new, currently trending show?  If you hate it, well that’s okay, not enough people have watched it yet.  If you love it?  Well my friend, you are a trendsetter and an internet icon.  If you only just like it?  You’re actually a bigger contributor to the growing viewership by being one of the first to the punch.  Good job.

If you pick the untested route, you may start a new trend, or you’ll find something so awful, so terrible, so boring, that you might watch the first episode and do anything you can in your power to make sure nobody else can ever see it.

Tv watching in this day and age is a full time job, wouldn’t you say?

 

I’ve Been Decorating Our Extra Room

Old posters from college and possibly times before sit in the corner, and I decide its high time I root through them and create what is possibly the oddest clusterfuck of wall hangings that you could imagine.  My tastes have always been so random in regards to music, books, and movies over the years, that what I have to work with is bizarre even to me.  Subversive political slogans, stupid comedies, and old rock bands are only some of the things in this pile, but I am determined that our studio/work space/spare bedroom can finally feel a little bit of that shit we call life. Right?

When Leominster Gives You Lemons

Our trivia team, The Leominster Lemons delivered a major upheaval to the rankings last night at Rye and Thyme, right in the heart of this little city.  The first half went well, never being too many points away from the other teams, never missing more than a small point value question here and there, and answering most things correctly at the half time bonus.  The second half, even some of our better thought through answers were failures.  Given it’s just a game and it’s fun, or we wouldn’t do it, but it’s still kind of a buzzkill when your performance drops so much.

The end of the game bonus question rears its head after it has been brought to our attention that we have gone from third or fourth place to sixth and last place.  There wasn’t much of a turnout this night compared to last week, so we could have been worse off.  Right?  We got the final question entirely correct and wagered the largest point value we could, and pulled from last to second, a bit dumbfounded I must say.  But it was a thrill to deliver such an upset, and to enjoy cheesecake and beer at one of the best restaurants in town.

I’ve Been Back At Work For A Couple Weeks NOW, and let me tell you..

I feel better than I have in months, and not just in the last month where I was suffering with my horrible and larger than it needed to be kidney stone.  That thing had to be lodged up there for a long time if you ask me.  My body acts more like it should, and not only that seems to run better.  I have more drive, more energy, more creative impulses than I’ve had in a while, so brace yourself for amazing things in store.

Kidney Stones Are Uncool

Believe me, I’m not an intolerant or prejudiced person by any means, but Kidney Stones are horrible horrible things.  And they deserve to not be inside anyone’s bodies.  I had a bout with them a few weeks ago, and let’s just say I was in a great amount of discomfort and full of bad feelings at the world for a couple weeks.   The first week was full of excruciating pain, drugged out stupor, lots and lots of movies, peeing a lot, drinking a lot of water, peeing even more, reading entire books in a day and sleeping.  While some of those are great things, some of those aren’t great things. And I missed seeing Dirty Heads and Sublime With Rome, which I bought the second the concert lineup was announced, months and months ago.  Oh well, better to be able to move around and be awesome again, than to not be right?  Missing a concert four hours away is really the best case scenario in all of this.  The stone couldn’t pass on its own, long story short, they had to stick something inside me and do some sort of business with a laser, I really don’t want to know more than I have to.  But to add insult to horrible pain, I had something inserted in my urethra, and getting that removed a week after my stone was removed, is an experience I don’t wish on anyone, not to mention one of the most embarrassing things ever.

Oh and another thing, who goes to med school and says, “I think I’ll focus on urology!” ?

The answer is, my urologist I guess….

Everyone Is Putting Out New Albums

And I mean everyone.  But I actually don’t literally mean everyone.  But so many groups seem to be getting a resurgence this year, and while some of them have still been consistently putting out albums, they are for this year only becoming popular again now.  And that is cool.  It’s also weird. But it’s mostly cool.

That’s all Really.