So Much Stuff I Can't Recall

Monday, May 31, 2004

More Phil Pix

The other day (here, in fact) I mentioned that Phil is doing a great job of putting together jigsaw puzzles. I wanted to show the puzzles, but they aren't for sale at Amazon (or I'd've posted a 5-star review looooong ago) and I couldn't find pictures of them anywhere online. So I took some pictures of my own (that way I'd have more pix of the boy to post here, too).

For good measure, here are a couple more pix.

Mikesell : 11:56 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Sunday, May 30, 2004

At Long Last ... Another Review

Last week was pretty quiet ... actually it was quite busy, which is why only one Amazon review got posted, and that not until Saturday night. I finished reading The X-Files: Goblins early in the week, but getting time to write the review was more difficult. At any rate, it's online now. Go read it.

Why you should read my review of The X-Files: Goblins: There's no reason to read it. Just follow the link and click the "Yes" button after the review.

Mikesell : 10:53 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Friday, May 28, 2004

New Camera, New Picture

Yay! We got ourselves a new digital camera (this one). It took awhile to get it interfacing with my Mac (as with Windows: when in doubt, reboot your machine), but it's pretty sweet.

Here's a sample photo.

Mikesell : 3:34 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

A Few Phil Pix

Back at the beginning of May (see here) my folks came up for a visit. My dad took a few pictures with his new toy (see above link for details). Here they are:

The photos were retouched to remove speckling and improve color, but, sorry to say, nothing could be done to make me look better.

Mikesell : 11:13 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Weblog Confession (plus DVD Review)

Back in 1985 I flew up to Eureka for a friend's birthday. The friend was a girl and the trip didn't get me anywhere with her. Oh well. The trip wasn't a total loss, however, because I did get to see The Terminator on that trip (the first - and if I recall correctly - only R-rated movie I saw in a theater while underage). Now, almost 20 years later I've got it on DVD and, although it no longer carries the thrill of "will I get carded?", all other thrills of the movie are still intact. Is there a review? Of course.

Why should you read my review of The Terminator: I recommend four "Tech-Noir" movies from the Eighties (one of them is this movie). What are the other three? Read the review. (Plus, I might include more Weblog Confessions like this one, and that one, if they help generate good reviewage.)

Mikesell : 6:27 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Two New Reviews (oooh, that rhymes!)

As noted the other day, I got new shoes (see here for notation). Since they happen to be sold on Amazon, I went ahead and submitted a review of them. (The sidebar link is in the "Gadget" section.)

I also finished reading Five Red Herrings by Dorothy Sayers. Naturally, I wrote a review of that, too.

Why you should read my review of Hi-Tec Scramble Low Boots: In a salute to our great white neighbors to the north, I used a phrase I first heard in Bob & Doug McKenzie's Strange Brew. See if you can identify it, and then start using it yourself. It'll come in handy when you're "oot and aboot."

Why you should read my review of Five Red Herrings: Let's see: Baseball metaphor, authentic Scottish phraseology, and I offer a helpful tip on how the book could be made better (now to steal the Way-Back machine from Mr. Peabody and his boy Sherman so I can return to the 1930's and implement it).

Mikesell : 12:18 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

What's New in Philville?

Mr. Smartypants: If you ask Philip how old he is he'll tell you "three and five-sixths." Dina asked him how old he'll be when he's "three and six-sixths" and he answered "four." He's the amazing Rainboy (if he keeps it up, someday he'll be a Rainman) We'll see how he handles "eleven-twelfths" at the end of the month.

The Puzzler: For his birthday last year Aunt Julia gave Phil a set of six Thunderbirds mini-puzzles (I'd show you the puzzles, but they don't exist anywhere on the Internet, even eBay). He hadn't shown much interest in them until about a week ago. Now he's doing them all by himself. What a guy!

New Shoes for Phil, Too: About two years ago we bought Phil a pair of Nike sneakers and set them on top of his dresser for use when he grew into them. I was getting something off the dresser this evening and saw/remembered them. He tried them on and, lo and behold, they fit! Another month and who knows, but for now he's stylin'.

Where's the Pix?: When my folks were up here the other week they took some photos. When we get them, we'll put them up here. Maybe I'll take a picture of him and his puzzles (to prove they exist) in the next day or two. Is that good enough for you? We should have some next month for his birthday, too; so take it easy, don't give yourself an infarction.

Mikesell : 10:56 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Changing My Shoes

For most - if not all - of the past twenty years I've worn one style of everyday-wear shoe: plain white sneaker. Brands have changed, styles have changed, but they've all been predominantly white and plain - the whiter and plainer the better.

Today that changed. I bought these*.

*I did not buy them through Amazon (I got them at Freddy's for $25 less than shown on the link), but the color and style are as shown. Look for a review soon.

Mikesell : 10:45 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Monday, May 17, 2004

And Now for Something Completely Different: A Gadget Review

In my last blog post I included a link to an item called Hulk Hands. Until I wrote that post I wasn't aware that they were available from Amazon (we got ours at WalMart), but knowing it now I went ahead and wrote a review. Now that you're aware of that, go read it.

Why you should read my review of Hulk Hands: I describe the one thing worse than a visit from Child Protective Services. What is it and how can you prevent it from happening to you? Read the review.

Mikesell : 12:07 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Saturday, May 15, 2004

New DVD Review

I picked up the movie Jeepers Creepers at Freddy's earlier this week. It's only 90 minutes long so I was a able to fit it into my busy lifestyle. Then I shoehorned in time to review it between Hulk Hands fighting with Phil and the Mother's Day episode of Kim Possible. Fight illiteracy: Read it now.

Why you should read my review of Jeepers Creepers: I suggest that the movie has borrowed liberally from several other films, specifying half a dozen. Which six films can you skip by watching this one? Read the review and find out how to save yourself a boatload of time.

Mikesell : 8:38 PM : 0 snarky remarks

I'm Finally In!

According to The Shaw Report in the May 21 edition of Entertainment Weekly, Rhinos are in (Elephants are 5 minutes ago; Zebras are out).

Of course they also say Pageant Hair (v. Beach Hair v. Flat-Ironed Hair) and Bedding (v. Bathrobes v. Blankets) are in, so who knows.

Mikesell : 7:33 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Thursday, May 13, 2004

If It's Tuesday, It Must Be a Book Review

Okay, so it's Wednesday ... that's a book review day, too (I wrote the review yesterday; it was posted today).

A few years back I bought a book called Scam School by Chuck Whitlock. This past weekend I stopped by a St. Vincent De Paul's and bought it again. I wound up giving a copy to my folks as a going away present (it's an Oregon tradition: "Welcome to here, now go home"), re-read the book (I realized what I had done when it started sounding familiar around the second chapter), and now I've reviewed it. So go read it already.

Why you should read my review of Scam School: Help me remember that I've read this book already. A lot of positive reinforcement will help it stick in my mind. And we thank you for your support.

Mikesell : 12:51 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

2 for 1 DVDs at Freddy's

There's a Buy 1 Get 1 Free deal going on this week at Fred Meyer on select MGM titles.

The selection at the W. 11th store in Eugene includes:

Romantic Comedies
When Harry Met Sally
Return to Me
Benny & Joon
The Cutting Edge
Legally Blonde

Movies I Don’t Recommend
Mystic Pizza
Four Weddings and a Funeral


War Flicks
The Great Escape
The Alamo
Red Dawn
Battle of Britain

Hang 'em High
Support Your Local Sheriff
Quigley Down Under

The Clint Eastwood “Man with No Name” Trilogy
A Fistful of Dollars
For a Few Dollars More
The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

Kid Movies
All Dogs Go to Heaven
Ring of Bright Water
The Secret of NIMH
The Care Bears Movie
The Black Stallion
Little Monsters
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Hamilton Mattress

Movies with Singing and Dancing
West Side Story
The Cotton Club

Sports Movies
The Jackie Robinson Story
Bull Durham
The Pride of the Yankees

Oldie Moldies
Sword of the Valiant
Jack the Giant Killer
The Barefoot Contessa
Yours Mine and Ours
It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World

Classic Lit Flicks
Nicholas Nickleby
Much Ado about Nothing

Crime Comedies
Get Shorty
Without a Clue
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

Crime Dramas
Dark Blue
Ned Kelly

Other Comedies
Easy Money
Carbon Copy
The Birdcage

Movies I Probably Wouldn’t Recommend If I Had Ever Seen Them
Take this Job and Shove It
Road House

Oooooh … Scary
Jeepers Creepers

Unofficial James Bond
Never Say Never Again


Other stores may have different titles available, these were just the ones on the big display (I think I hunted through the main DVD section and found The Fog and Wargames in there before).

If you don't have a Freddy's near you, shoot me an e-mail and I'll see what I can do.

Mikesell : 12:46 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Monday, May 10, 2004

New Book Review

I started the week out right with another book review. This time for J.A. Jance's Dead to Rights. After the painful third "Bill the Galactic Hero" book, it was a joy to go back to Arizona with Jance and Sheriff Joanna Brady. Read the review.

Why you should read my review of Dead to Rights: Back in my university days I had to read Amy Tan's Joy Luck Club in a Women's Studies/Literature general education course. A little too angsty for my taste, but my Liberal Arts experience paid off as I was able to reference JLC in the review. Actually, it only pays off if people rate the review positively, so get at it. Please and thank you.

Mikesell : 2:16 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Major Points for Me and Dina

Yesterday (Mother's Day, in case you've forgotten), Philip was sitting in Dina's lap helping her eat her special strawberries and whipped cream treat.

Out of nowhere, he suggested that "it should be Boy's Day."

Neither of us commented that "every day is Boy's Day," so major points to us for not yet becoming our parents.

(I'm saving up my points for a set of mag wheels. Man, that'd be sweet.)

Mikesell : 1:37 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Busy End of the Week

My folks have been here the past few days, so we've been kept pretty busy.

Dad picked up a new PDA (Sony Clie PEG-TJ27) - it has a built-in camera, so if/when he figures out how to send the photos up here, I'll put them online for you to enjoy. Other exciting activities included shopping for used books and Hot Wheels, doing the Mongolian BBQ, getting a haircut for the boy (his new 'do is in the Clie pix), and a surprise visit from Uncle Chuck (mom's brother) and Aunt Jayne.

This weekend's guest group is holding a silent retreat, so it should be quiet around here for the next day or so.

Mikesell : 12:50 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Amazon Reviews Bump

Today I got bumped from 6,355 all the way up to 5,837.

Looks like I'm with 222 people in this ranking, so I skipped the 6059 tier entirely this time (I was there for a week a couple weeks ago before getting sent back to the minors for awhile).

Still a ways to go before I get a Top 1000 (or Top 1) graphic beside my name, but back in November '03 I was ranked at 297,934 (see here), so progress is definitely being made.

Mikesell : 2:45 PM : 0 snarky remarks

4-Star Triple Feature

Actually, if you rate the three movies on the DVD separately, then Alfred Hitchcock Thrillers comes out to a 9.5-star triple feature (The Man Who Knew Too Much & Secret Agent = 3 stars each, The Lady Vanishes = 3.5). A detailed review is online at Amazon.

Why you should read my review of Alfred Hitchcock Thrillers: I left a typo in it for you to find. Sort of a Where's Walbo? challenge.

Mikesell : 11:24 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Read the Review ... Skip the Book

Bill the Galactic Hero: On the Planet of Bottled Brains is hands-down the worst book I've read in a long time. I reviewed it anyway.

Why you should read my review of Bill the Galactic Hero: On the Planet of Bottled Brains: It's my snarkiest review ever. I haven't ripped into something this much since decimating my sister Julia at the dinner table as a teenager (<sigh> ... good times). Maybe I'll make a habit of reading only really bad novels just so I can tear them apart on Amazon. Maybe I'll save time and just give my sister a call....

Mikesell : 11:40 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Ten-Star Double-Feature

There are a couple new movie reviews over at Amazon, both of them five-star-ers. So set the Way-Back Machine, Sherman, for 1959 and Journey to the Center of the Earth, then dial in 1946 for The Big Sleep.

Why you should read my review of Journey to the Center of the Earth: I tell you what scares Philip (I refer to him as a 4-year-old, even though he's 3-5/6 ... sue me for rounding up - he still has to wait until the end of June for his presents), I warn you about a Sean Connery movie, and I alert you to the presence of one of Gotham City's most trusted citizens in the film.

Why you should read my review of The Big Sleep: I tell Hollywood how to make a classic film even better. Such chutzpah!

Mikesell : 11:14 AM : 0 snarky remarks