Friday, January 2, 2015

Captain, My Captain

Time to bring out a little geek. It's been a while and. There's no "and". This is my blog and I'll blog what I want! Today kids, is a sequel of sorts. You may recall I wrote an entry a while back about the Star Wars vs Star Trek feud, when I declared Babylon 5 the winner.

Today however, B5 doesn't win. So let's get to it. Who's the best Captain? So my Browncoats will hate this, but Mal is the first I'll knock down. He's a bad dude, but only a Captain in the technical sense as he's the employer and owns Serenity. That's it. Done deal. He's gone.

Next up. Star Wars. Sure there's some captain's. But none we truly know as a captain or really care about. We know them as jedi, princess, scoundrel, droids, sith, and wookies. So my Death Star just blew that universe away. Moving on.

Sadly B5 is next on the chopping block. This might be enough to drive Garibaldi back to the booze. We see some great captain's here. And we see a lot of them die. But the ones that live are career and fate driven to move up and out. They become ambassadors, presidents, etc. They just keep moving to other pastures. While it's great, we just couldn't hold on to our captain's out there. Even commanders were subject to the same fate.

Next up Trek. We have a ton of captain's here, and that's just on the Federation's side alone. Picard, Janeway, Sisko, eventually even Sulu made the seat. Admit it, you still giggle at the memory of Christian Slater getting yelled at. But the first captain, not the pilot Kirk, but Shatner is my Captain. He gave life to the breed of Captain we expect today. I say Shatner, not just Kirk, because no other Captain has given so much of himself to the seat.  Picard could give a run for his money, but Patrick Stewart himself has noted that one TNG was surprising in that it didn't fail, when he expected it to. And two, it was merely a great part in his career. Which makes sense after his various successes.

But Shatner, Kirk, has a life in the chair. So many great series, and worlds but he comes back. TJ Hooker, TekWar, Boston Legal, and so many memorable moments. But he was always in the chair. His addition in the world of books shows his love and devotion to the chair. Even when Kirk was promoted, he found his way back to the Captain's chair. His advise to Picard, "don't let them take that chair away". And to this day there is still interest in being part of one last journey on the big screen as Kirk.

Just as Kirk man handled the Kobayahi Maru, Shatner has defied the only being the Captain for a while. Instead he's turned the odds around and given us more than could be expected of a character, a writer, an actor, and himself. Shatner is the Captain.
So hopefully Ivanova doesn't whoop me too bad when she and the Captain are in town for the Albuquerque Comic Con next week.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Resolution for Life

Happy New Year! So it's day 1 and many of you have a resolution of some sort. Some are saying, "not me."

For most it's some vain, petty thing that won't last long. Examples include: lose weight, stop smoking, work less. Let's admit it. Most won't stick to a resolution past saying it.

Here's the "but". I have a recommendation for everyone's resolution. It's incredibly simple. And it's something everyone should be doing anyway.

"Be a better me"

Yup, that's it. We all have things we have trouble with, and struggle to overcome. In the USMC we say, "know yourself and seek self-improvement." It's a must.
Now, I'm not saying to become a fitness freak, or to put out that cigarette. I'm not saying to stop cursing, or to go to church. What this resolution calls for is baby steps. It's a day at a time. And you will have moments that will cause you to stumble and fall. That's ok. Just get back up. Smile. And start again. Do your best. And then tomorrow, you'll do even better. The best part of this is the fact that it's not just a new years resolution. It's that this can and should be a resolution for life.

Can you imagine how much better the world would be if everyone committed to this? Are you up to the challenge?

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Random Pet Peeve

Time for a random tick. You have to love people with a delusion of grandeur. The security guard who truly believe he's a cop, the ugly person who thinks they're a model, and something that's been on my mind for a while is the karaoke singer who thinks they are the front man for the next big band. You know the types I'm talking about.

Now we all have friends and family with good singing voices. I'm the first to admit mine sounds like a dog that's still awake while getting castrated. Yup, it's that bad. Luckily I have other talents to make up for it. However a while back, alright way back,  I met a guy at work who said in his off time he's a singer for a local band. To protect the embarrassment of the group, I won't list it's name and we'll refer to this guy as Red. But I digress. So Red's a singer right. And of course we challenge him to sing something for us. He tries, and fails with some poor excuse. And we all write him off. 

A couple years later, Red pop's up again. Our workplace is making some big fuss about him because he's going to a karaoke championship. I'm thinking, "great, he can sing if he's reading." My kids can do that while playing Rock Band, big deal. And it turns out, he did pretty good. Proving, yes it's easier when you can just read the words instead of having talent. At this point Red and I are both leaving for other business ventures, and he disappears. Out of sight, out of mind.

So fast forward to a couple months ago. My wife and I take a nice long weekend to Buffalo Thunder to get away for a little while. We're walking around and who do I find? You guessed it, here's Red and his band playing at one of the clubs at this resort. So Erica and I do what comes natural, we sit down, place an order and listen to them for a while. Overall the band isn't bad. The drummer is wailing on his kit, the bassist is walking around and killing it, the guitarist isn't great but they're getting the job done, there's a female singer that knows what she's doing and has a good voice, then there's Red. 

Red's trying to move with the dancing skills of a toddler, trying way to hard to act like a rock star, and I'm thinking to myself, "What The French Toast" For all he's worth, he can't get two feet from his mic stand. You may be asking what's the significance of that? Well he's holding a mic, it's not on the stand. The stand has an iPad holder with, that's right sports fan, an iPad! He's reading every stinking word! And very obviously at that! He's treating it like a karaoke machine! Song's that are very well rehearsed by the band, and one song being the same one he bombed all those years ago when we challenged him. He can't do anything without this stinking tablet!

Here's the pet peeve. As I've mentioned in the past, I grew up around musicians. My dad being one. Myself, being one. And many friends being musicians. If you're in a band, let alone singing, you take some pride in the fact YOU KNOW THE MATERIAL! A set list, with one or two notes is no big thing. But know the material. If you're standing in front of a tablet, you are not a musician. Red you're a hack! I don't care if you're sing the national anthem, learn it, take the heat and grow from your mistakes, or get the stage! There is one time it's okay to read the music if you're performing in front of a crowd aside from being in school, it's called being in an orchestra. Red, it's time for you exit, stage right. 

A Night of Rock

The Raskins, Alice Cooper, and Motley Crue
 Time for an entry in the concert series. Last night was a great night. It was time to break away from the hum drum crap of the world, immerse myself in some loud music, and lose myself for a few hours with some like minded people. Motley Crue's Final Tour at the Isleta Amphitheater, Albuquerque, NM. In the singing voice of Vince Neil, it kicked some ass! So time for a breakdown of the night. 

Sunset at the Isleta Amphitheatre, Albuquerque, NM
The warm up act took stage on time. Some crap group from NY called foreskins or some similar name not worth remembering. The didn't have a single song of their own, and played one of the worst Ramons covers I've ever heard. Most of the crowd ignored them and continued to get merchandise, food, and of course adult beverages. What's really sad is the fact that they weren't that bad if you got rid of the front man. Yes, he was that bad. So moving along.

Alice Cooper, center stage!
Time for Alice Cooper! Alice hasn't lost a step. Wardrobe changes, Frankenstein, beheadings, you were entertained from beginning to end. A truly great set from the master. If you were standing in the crowd in my section, it was behind me. Sadly I was in a noticeably weak section off the crowd. Don't get me wrong, I had a great view. But that's because from beginning to end, I was standing behind a sea of dead asses. Not a single person stood! Only part of the crowd! Obviously they didn't know what they were in for, our how to react. Losers. I felt bad for Alice, but I stood up raised my hand in the air and got the groove! It's ALICE! Amazing!

The sea of dead asses in front of me on the lawn. This is at the end of Alice's set.
Then of course a short intermission to adjust the stage for Crue. A short video came on the screens off stage and the sea of dead asses got up thinking it was actually their time. Morons! So I took the time to check merch, and food.
Motley Crue!
Now time for the so called FINAL TOUR (we'll see how that goes), Motley Crue takes the stage!  And BOOM! We're off and running! Balls to the wall! Everyone is on their feet and looking around you can finally tell that this is a sold out show! Lights, pyro, and ROCK! Another great set. The crowd was singing along, heads were bobbing, hands in the air, whistles, screams, a few lighters, all the good stuff that a concert should be. A little verbage from Vince and Nikki of course, and a couple of solo's. Sadly none from Tommy. But a great show none the less. Lights that give Kiss a run for their money easily, and pyro that kicks Kiss square in the balls. And to finish off the night... the boys moved to a stage in the middle of the audience to play Home Sweet Home.
Crue playing Home Sweet Home
And of course like any good show, aside from the fellow metalheads in the crowd, it was enjoyed with family and friends. Love ya!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Today it started raining

Today it started raining, 
it would have been my dad's birthday. 
It's as if angels are crying, 
as I keep my own tears at bay.

Today it started raining, 
after such a bright start. 
It was his beginning, 
and it holds true even though we are apart.

Today it started raining, 
and I can't help but feel it's just for me. 
While my emotions are draining, 
I know together we will one day be.

Happy Birthday, 
I miss you Dad. 
Today it started raining.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Social or Not

Recently I had someone call me out on a social networking site. It was a great call on his part. There's still a little mystery in it for me, but not a lot. They had me in their circles, but I didn't have them in mine. And were kind enough to give me fair warning to engage with them or get booted. After a very brief exchange on our part, it was a refreshing breath to see we saw eye to eye. Social media is just that, "SOCIAL". See, it says it right there in the name. And bottom line, if you're not social, eventually I'm going to boot you from my list. It doesn't matter much how you engage, just that you do such.

Now this doesn't mean I'm going to interact with every single person, every single day. And will a few get past unnoticed for a while? It's a pretty safe bet. Furthermore, it doesn't mean I'm going to read every single post. Let's face it, there's just too many. Some people have over 30 posts a day. And after you have more than a handful of people added to your circles, reading everything become a pipe dream. This is especially true if you don't engage with people. The occasional comment, or shared pic. Maybe a mention as a way of saying, "Thanks to so-so for sharing this." Something. And I'm not just talking about liking a post. Thanks FB for that BS trend.

Does everyone slack once in a while? Of course, life happens. Will we agree on everything? Well great minds think alike... ok, that's BS. Simply put no, but that's life. So here's fair warning to everyone, if you don't engage on some level, eventually you'll be gone from my list. If all you do is try sharing dirty pics, you'll be gone even faster. But if you have something intelligent, or of interest to share from time to time you're perfectly safe.

With that said, I'd just like to take a moment to thank +Tobi Mann for the courtesy the other day.

To my loyal blog readers, don't worry I have some fun headed back your way. I still owe someone a post on sock puppets, and of course there's always some weird crap running through my mind.

My heater thinks its an air conditioner

Hey kids, come on in. The heater went out, so I home you dressed warm. Yup, nothing says cold like no heat in the winter time. Oh I know there are those of you who would say, "It's not that bad" or "I'd rather be cold than hot." Or you'd utter some other moronic dribble that would make me want to punch you in the throat. Let me tell you this, if you're one of those that would spew such idiocy, you are a LIAR and truly don't know what you're saying. So if you haven't guessed by now, I'm venting right now.

This piece of garbage we call a heater, makes me feel like the dad from A Christmas Story at night. It comes on for an undetermined amount of time, usually 1-5 minutes, and then the blower just stops. You hear the hum, but there's just nothing. Or what's worse, is when the stupid thing will come on, but all it does is blow air. Let me clarify this for those who are thinking, "well duh, that's what it's supposed to do." It's not hot or even warm air. It's the already frigid air in the house blowing through like an arctic dune. A couple of nights ago, I was so cold my face literally hurt.

Why hasn't this been fixed by now? Not for lack of trying, and getting shafted. We've had a company come out several times. In some cases day after day. They say it's this, or that, or we think it's this now but we're not sure. Someone who claimed to be the supervisor even came over a couple times. Then they said they'd have to talk to the OEM and get one of their people because they couldn't figure it out. And then the final insult... I kid you not, they said we'd just have to turn it off and throw the breaker switch every time it stops working right. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Then they still had the balls to try charging us for coming out and not fixing it!

So right now I'm sitting hear, waiting for the HVAC guys to come fix my stupid heater. A different company this time. They worked magic with our A/C last summer, which had never previously worked that well. So hopefully they can bring that same magic to keep my family warm. Otherwise I'm afraid I'm going to have to burn the whole house down just to stay warm for a night. At least I have my fireplace, and a good stack of wood. It's the only thing that's helped keep the house in the mid-50s to lower 60's the past couple days.