Saturday, April 15, 2017

The odd thing is still coming

and it's much closer now.  I wrote about it in an entry a few weeks back, and I was excited about it then.  I'm even more chuffed about it today, though I will again confess that it's one of the odder things I have done in a life that contains quite a few odd choices.

I will give one clue:  it'll make its public appearance about the same time as the start of this year's TED, which I am fortunate enough to be attending.

Is that a coincidence?


Friday, April 14, 2017

The Fate of the Furious

is everything I hoped it would be and more, a fine movie in this franchise and probably my second favorite (after the fifth) of the bunch.

With more and stranger action than you would imagine possible--a trademark of the series--and nods to all of the elements of its predecessors, the movie just picks you up and carries you along in its explosive-laden hands.  You're not going to be bored, and though you can easily know the direction of the story, the particulars are good enough that you enjoy the ride.

The movie also manages to give some time to all of the key members of its huge and growing cast, and it does so with both love and a great deal of humor.  Watching Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham taunt each other is a special treat, but so, too, are the more far-out action bits, which the script and actors handle with just enough self-awareness that you feel like they're both in on the joke and enjoying the hell out of making the movie.

I believe you could come to the film cold, with no knowledge of the previous seven, and still have a good time, though you'd be aware you were missing some of the gags.  Having seen all of the films more than once, however, I was in the perfect audience for this one, and I had a perfectly grand time watching it.

When you're in the mood for summer blockbuster action fun, check out The Fate of the Furious.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

I'm not solely responsible for the rise of the big, dumb action movie

but I certainly share the blame with some of my friends and millions of other viewers who see a trailer like this one and know they must catch this film.

We're talking Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds chewing the scenery, gunfights and chase scenes, and enough of a story to keep the action rolling along.  What's not to like?

I will need to read afterward to repair my brain, but I can live with that.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

I fail the tire test

Yesterday, the rear passenger-side tire of my Tesla Model S picked up a very large screw that quickly turned the tire flat.  Though I was sad to see it and more sad to have to buy a new tire, this sort of thing happens.  It was late, so I got a ride home and emailed Tesla Motor's local service manager om the wee hours of the evening.

Today, in the wonderful Tesla style, they brought me a loaner on a truck, parked it, put my car on the truck, and took it off for repair.  Total time cost to me of this encounter:  four minutes.  Wonderful.

After picking up the key fob for the loaner, it occurred to me that I had not gotten new tires in quite a while, and given that my car has sports performance tires and I do drive the thing like a sports car, I should have needed new tires.  I mentioned this to the guy who picked up my car and asked that he have the service manager check out my tires.

A couple of hours later, the service manager, a woman who's always been incredibly efficient and great to deal with, called me.  She was laughing.  She asked if I had looked at my rear tires closely.  I allowed I had not.  She said that, yes, I did indeed need two new rear tires, because the cord was showing on both.  She was amazed they were still working well--which they were.

I clearly failed the tire test.  I shall endeavor to be more observant in the future, but I am also quite glad to report that the tires managed to keep me driving even when I neglected them.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Even though outrageous is the new normal

sometimes I'm surprised by how stupid our current administration can be.  Case in point:  Sean Spicer's recent remarks about Hitler and his subsequent lame attempts to explain away his remarks.

Nothing is too ludicrous or offensive for this administration.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Thor: Ragnarok had me

by existing, but then it gained Cate Blanchett and a few other actors, and, well, this trailer.

Yup, I'm there.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Yes, I ate that

Char-Grill is a Raleigh institution, a mini-chain that grew from a single location in 1959 based on its ability to serve reliably tasty burgers and very good steak fries.  I grab a burger there from time to time, but the fries are the main attraction, because for my taste, the burgers tend to be over-cooked and dry.  I have never, though, eaten one of their hot dogs.

Today, on the way to the grocery store and rather hungry, I decided to stop there and eat a hot dog so I wouldn't enter the Whole Foods hungry.  (I've learned that doing so can hurt my wallet far more than the price of a tube steak.)  I chose a hot dog with cheese.

This is what awaited me inside the very cheerful "Hot Dogs! Enjoy" wrapping paper.

Click the image to see a larger version--if you dare.

I'm not sure which red dye this dog was, but I'm pretty confident that dye was one of the tube steak's major components.  The bun was white and soft, a full commitment to 1959, and the "cheese" seemed to be some sort of mini-slice of cheese food, though it's possible this cheese was just a very weak real cheese.

Of course, I ate it.  It wasn't bad.  I've had far worse hot dogs--which, unfortunately, tells you way more about me than about this particular dog.

On balance, though, in future Char-Grill visits I'll be sticking to the fries, maybe even a burger, but I won't be ordering another hot dog.


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