Sunday, December 16, 2007

Bad Taste in Movies

Dredging the movie bin at Wal-Mart for cheap movies is a nasty vice of mine. This is mostly because I have distinctly bad (but discriminating) taste. I love movies that most people think are utterly horrible, and this is just the kind of fair that one finds in the crap bin.

So, yesterday I ended up walking away with these delights:

  • Grandma's Boy -- juvenile, wacky stoner comedy featuring the guys who've played minor characters in most of Adam Sandler's movies; almost every other line is quotable: "Who wants to hear about my STD from the silent film era?"
  • American Psycho -- a very disturbing piece of literature turned into a dark comedy (at least, I think it's funny) about a psycho serial killer
  • Tango & Cash -- the epitome of 80's buddy/cop action flicks: after blowing up a forty-acre drug/weapon smuggling compound, killing Jack Palance, and rescuing Teri Hatcher; Kurt Russell and Sly Stalone exchange witty banter and end the movie with a high five
  • Double Feature: Road Warrior & Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome -- pre-Jew-hating, psycho-Christian Mel Gibson battling post-apocalyptic road rage ... plus Tina Turner

You can keep your Oscar-winning blockbusters. I'll stick with cheap entertainment.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Diversity -- Just Another Word for Racism

A long quote from a short piece, "Racial Balance" Programs: The New Racism, by Debi Ghate:

They insist on branding a student by his skin color and dictating what school he will attend. They insist on enforcing quotas and counting students like barnyard stock. They insist on creating a new kind of injustice--a new kind of racism--in the name of eliminating the old.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Just Asking

The following is an email chain that went out to everyone in my department last month. Supervisor was in charge of collecting money for some Adopt-A-Family charity that some people in the office wanted to give to. Employee is one of the donors.

From: [Supervisor}
Sent: Friday, November 16, 2007 11:47 AM
To: [All Records Staff]
Subject: Adopt -A-Family

I want to thank everyone who contributed 
to the Adopt-A-Family program. We collected 
$164.00 dollars. Thanks for such a 
fantastic effort!!!

From: [Supervisor]
Sent: Friday, November 16, 2007 11:50 AM
To: [All Records Staff]
Subject: FW: Adopt -A-Family

Correction . $170.00. - [Supervisor]

From: [Employee]
Sent: Friday, November 16, 2007 1:12 PM
To: [Supervisor]
Cc: [All Records Staff]
Subject: RE: Adopt -A-Family

Will everyone that gave be recognized some 
way?  Just asking.

Is it just me, or is this bitch a huge douche-lick?

Perhaps this is sort of a "you had to be there" or "you have to know the bitch" situation, but I think if you carefully examine some of the subtler points of Employee's response, you'll be able to see just how douchey she really is:

  1. In a supreme act of humility and genuine charity, Employee asks if she will be rewarded (beyond her bloated self-righteousness, that is) for her philanthropy.
  2. Not only does Employee reply to Supervisor to ask for recognition, but she copies all of her co-workers. In the case that she won't be recognized for selflessly giving to the less fortunate, she'll be recognized for recognizing those that did.
  3. Employee "just asks" if the donors will be recognized, and does not at all imply that they should or deserve to be heralded and praised for their generous contributions.
  4. In the true spirit of giving, Employee asks for something in return ... for "everyone who gave," of course. She's looking out for everyone else's best interests.

Moral of the story: Give because you feel like giving, not because you want to get a pat on the head.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Thinking Versus Doing

Hard work and determination never got anyone farther than the end of the day. Innovation and ingenuity will get you to the end of the day by noon and the end of the week by sunset.

Some people revel in martyring themselves in the name of a dirty job. And other people believe that a long, hard day's work is always good work. I imagine that these people also think that anyone who says something to the contrary is just looking for the easy way out or is just plain lazy.

But, in my opinion, lazy is not taking the time to find the simple way around a difficult chore. The hardest part about hard work is thinking, planning.

And that's what it all comes down to: thinking versus doing. The hard worker prides himself in doing, and scoffs at thinking as an idle, wasteful endeavor. But the thinkers -- inventors, entrepaneurs, scholars, leaders -- pride themselves in thinking, and hire the hard workers to do the bitch work for low wages.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

The Golden Dumbass

Apparently, there's some hullaballoo about the movie The Golden Compass within the Christian community. (I'm not sure where the complaints were when the book was published.) The claim against is that it is anti-Christian because the book was written by an athiest.

My advice to all Christians up in arms about this: Don't believe everything you read and don't read everything you believe. Don't believe the crazies that say a children's fantasy novel is going to corrupt the children and cause the downfall of your religion. And don't read only the novels that say everything you already believe. Your faith won't grow stronger by petting it. Stretch it, scare it, flip it on its head; your faith will grow stronger by challenging it.

And most of all, don't take offense at every novel and short story that comes along. You've got your own book that's offensive enough for everyone.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Thanksgiving in Washington, DC

Take a look at my photos from my Thanksgiving vacation in Washington, DC.

Circa Now