Monday, February 25, 2013

My Holiday Says Hi He's busy at the moment Dec 28, 2012 8:59PM PST

So some quick updates since I'm too wrapped up in holiday cheer and relaxation (also flooring and driving issues, but you don't want to hear that shit, we all got problems).
Christmas Haul:
We had a "secret" Santa thing this year where we each got someone else in the family by drawing a name (I wasn't there for the drawing due to some complication I forget, might have been the company Christmas party at the start of the month) , and bought that person the gifts they asked for with a $30 cap.
My mom and I had each other, so I got her some polka-dot socks, a Black and Decker coffee maker and a $10 Burger King gift card. Sounds incredibly simple? I thought so too, but she asked for the first two items and actually seemed like a kid at Christmas. I really don't understand her sometimes, but I was glad she was happy.
In return, I got Mockingjay, the third book in the Hunger Games trilogy (I still need to finish Catching Fire, I'm only on chapter 6), The Dark Knight Rises,  and the newest CD from the band Of Monsters and Men (My Head is an Animal). I asked her how she'd stayed in budget, and she told me she did. Not sure how, I was expecting a couple CDs and a gift card, but the diversity in what I got was pretty much awesome to me. So I had a very good Christmas. Also got some money from my aunts, and a lottery ticket that got me $3, which is what it costed so I broke even I guess. Getting two ends to trilogies and $3 didn't help my superstitions about the #3.
My brother got my dad some Cowboys themed golf set from the stadium. He works at Cowboys stadium for those of you new to my blog. My dad got him Ace Combat for 360 by mistake... well, actually, the local Gamestop's mistake. Apparently an older guy there told him the Ace Combat my brother asked for was a PS1 game, and initially they weren't even going to give my dad a case for the disc! My brother said, and I agreed, that is the cheapest thing he'd ever heard. Anyway, my dad got them to give him a plain black case for it, and it was exchanged for a proper PS3 disc in the morning after Christmas. I forget what else they had got each other.

Then of course, we had Christmas dinner. I'm counting calories and wasn't going to get a chance to exercise that day, so I didn't have as much as usual, but there was delicious ham, potatoes, sweet rolls, butter, asparagus, etc. to be had. Despite indulging from time to time, I've gone from 218 to 208 lbs from Dec. 5 to today, so I'm sticking with my calorie counting no matter how girly it sounds! Well on my way to being 195 lbs as I was when I exercised regularly in college. Crazy how much a couple months of saying "fuck it" can do to your physique.
Street Fighter X Mega Man
On Christmas morning, I beat the 8 Street Fighters and got past the first ... Castle level? The map for the "castle" part is a map with M. Bison atop it.
It's a very fun game, if a little easy. I'd say it's about the level of Mega Man 2 on "Normal." Music is great, levels are fairly inventive if a bit short, bosses are a decent challenge, and it's not like there's a reason to tell you this cause it's a free download on a platform you have to own to be reading this. Go to and do yourself a solid. And no, you don't need a gaming laptop, my D620 handles it fine.
Life of Pi
I still prefer 2D no matter what the movie, but the 3D in this is impressive. I absolutely loved the first part, which was a study on the importance and implications of religion. I don't want to get into it, but if you've read the book, I'm more aligned with the dad of the main character, but I understand and admire where the main character is coming from.
The middle, once they get on the life boat is... a bit slow. The movie was directed by Ang Lee, who also directed the 2004, Eric Bana Hulk, and he loves to take his time. This movie makes a little more sense to have the pacing it does, but I do feel like it could be shortened without losng anything.
The acting and cinematography are worth it though. It's a great experience, even if it needs a bit of editing.I chose to see it over The Hobbit with my mom cause I figure Hobbit will be out for a while, but Pi was already limited to one theater we were nearby where we were shopping.
Arthur Christmas
Recently rented this one, and it's really funny and inventive. It's about the day of Christmas being an almost military style execution mission run by the Clause family and an army of elves. Well, at least Arthur's top-heavy brother Steve runs things that way, aboard the giant S-1 Spaceship that his dad, the current Santa Clause uses for delivering presents.
At the end of the mission, there's a speech where Steve is expected to replace his dad as the next Santa, because after all he does all the work, but his oblivious dad thinks he did everything and doesn't pass on the position. It's later revealed that they missed a kid, so it's up to Arthur, his crazy Grandpa, and a wrapping elf to save the day with the old magic sleigh, and not all this newfangled S-1 businees.
I know I gave you a description, not a review, but all I can really say is, it's charming, it's British humor, and it's a good holiday family movie. Definitely a feel good rental, and I'm very glad I saw it.Favorite character is the nutball old man.
Just rented this from Red Box and watched it earlier tonight, and it's not as funny as I was led to believe, but I liked it. It's a stop motion movie, but it moves as quickly as 3D animation because of some camera trick or something. I read something from earlier about it (in their Movies section in Cracked 64 for 2012) but I forgot exactly.
It teaches a good moral about mob mentality, acceptance, and there's quite a shock about the jock character at the end. It's the Halloween, irreverent, American answer to Arthur Christmas's Christmas, British, sincere goofery. I'm more of a fan of Christmas, so I like Arthur more, but Paranorman is pretty good, too. My ex girlfriend's favorite holiday was Halloweeen, so she'd like it. Actually, I think she might love it the way I love Arthur Chritmas.
Rewatched the first part cause mom rented it, and it's still a great movie, but I just couldn't get through it the second time cause I was too tired. It's one of those movies that leaves an impact on you, but you can't really watch it again, at least I had trouble... with the curve.
Trouble with the Curve
Watching it now. It's ok. Amy Adams is still an amazing actress, Timberlake still kind of annoys me when he's not on SNL, Eastwood is still an asshole/badass old man, and the movie is pretty much exactly what I expected. Parents wanted to see it, so there you go. Also, it made me realize you're supposed to be as old as Eastwood to have the problems he's having at the very beginning of the movie. Makes me feel old... moving on.
More movie speak to come when I watch the rest of the movies I want to this year and do my 12 best movies of 2012 blog. And of course, still need to do my Christmas pasts of Gaming blog, but this will have to tide you over for now while I make New Year's Eve plans with some visiting friends. Company I freelance for is going to Django Unchained on Jan 3, so might see that with them, and find some way to see  Hobbit, Les Miserables, and Zero Dark Thirty.
Happy New Year, if I don't blog agan before then!

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