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Showing posts from May, 2015

Alabama Shakes

The Alabama state senate recently passed SB377, by a 22-3 vote, which seeks to end the practice of state-licensed marriages. For everyone. Period. A blog known as the Tenth Amendment Centerreported favorably on the measure, and as this is an issue near and dear, I wanted to take a moment (or two) to go over their thoughts on the subject, and then offer mine in return. I don't normally like to do this here, but felt it was necessary in order to clarify a few things.
Here we go...

Pic of the Week

Yesterday was UK diver Tom Daley's 21st birthday, so he is our Pic of the Week. Enjoy!

Good Night, and Good Luck

"Nobody knows what the future holds
And it's bad enough just getting old
Live my life in self-defense
You know I love the past cuz I hate suspense" Diane Young by Vampire Weekend

Much has been written about the retirement of David Letterman from late-night television. I paused before adding to the pile of tributes/good riddance write-ups cluttering the Internet of late. In the end, this is more of a personal moment for me than initially anticipated, with a reach far beyond the talk show host, himself.
In 1992, Johnny Carson ended his 30-year-run as the king of late-night, departing The Tonight Show for the greener pastures of retirement. Jay Leno took over, and things were never the same. I enjoyed Johnny. He came across as warm, amiable, like a nice grandfather. Someone a couple of generations removed, yet still fun to watch.
I never warmed to Leno and his brand of humor. Letterman was always my cup of preferred tea. When he didn't get The Tonight Show gig in '9…

Ghost In the Machine

After watching the new movie Ex Machina, I've been contemplating the possibility of artificial intelligence in our world, though not in the impact it might have on our society, but how we should treat it once it arrives (and it will).
Some spoilers for the movie follow, so turn back now if you haven't seen it yet....

2015, Charing Cross Road

Do you remember having a pen pal? I do. It seemed like such a unique concept at the time. This was back in the 1980s, when I was in elementary school. Not exactly sure of what year it was, but we were each given another child to write to. I think mine was in France (though he obviously knew enough English to correspond). There were perhaps only two letters exchanged between us, but that was enough. It felt exciting to wrote back & forth with someone so far away.

I thought of that brief friend from France, whose face I never saw and whose name now escapes memory, as I wished a happy birthday to someone who lives in New York City a few days ago. You might think I met him on the occasion I traveled to NYC in 1995. You would be mistaken. We met (if you can call it that) online, via Facebook. In fact, I know several folks solely online. We've never met in-person, and some of us don't even live on the same continent.
What used to be a special circumstance is now, due to the won…

The Best Superhero Movies of All-Time

The latest installment of the MARVEL superhero movie universe opened last week, and I saw it on opening night.
Avengers: Age of Ultron hit all the perfunctory notes that a modern comics-to-screen film should, though I left the theater without feeling thrilled. That's ok. I'm not really the target audience for the genre anymore. As a teenager, I collected comic books for a few years, almost exclusively Marvel.   Among my favorite were: The Avengers, Captain America, Spider-Man and Thor. After awhile, I stopped collecting, mostly because it became obvious the story lines would never end. It's one reason why I'm not a fan of soap operas.
In spite of having abandoned serious comic collecting in the early '90s, I still enjoy a good superhero film. There have been many and, at last count, I'd seen 29 movies of the genre (though how to categorize them is up for debate. I do not, for example, consider V for Vendetta to be a superhero movie. Great film? Yes. Superhero? N…