Paranormal Activist

161049__grudge_2_l

We watched Paranormal Activity over the weekend.

The characters were never really developed beyond “Reasonable Girlfriend” and “Jerkass Boyfriend”, and it opens with a few of the old fashioned loud noise/fake out scares that you might expect, but in the end it was a pretty effective little movie.

The nature of a faux-handheld camera movie frees you to not worry so much about character development, and the scares are well deployed and interesting enough to keep even a hardened enthusiast, such as myself, entertained.

Actually, in an odd way,  it reminded me of Ju-on, the original version of The Grudge. Relatively simple horror stories, using relatively simple effects, each made more effective by their “home made” nature.

Function

elsie

Despite the fact that it rarely gets mentioned, the function of this blog, other than being a dumping ground for the types of random thoughts already on display below, was always meant to relate more to my endeavors in writing fiction.

The truth is, despite the fact that my original mindset in setting this up was a sort of public shaming that would help encourage me to actually get writing, the fact that I’ve avoided discussing it at all has basically negated that effect. It feels awkward to discuss my creative work though, more so somehow than using this as a platform to shout at people about how dumb their kids are.

So, what have I got on my plate, and what do I want to get accomplished?

At the moment, I’ve got two projects in my pocket:

The goofier of the two is a gag comic strip I’ve been writing. Following the suggestion of the halfpixel folk, we’re building a backlog of comics before posting anything. Over the last couple of weeks I’ve scripted out the first thirteen, and come up with general ideas for another ten. Our idea is to post 3 a week, we’ll see how it goes.

It’s surprisingly tough to be funny on demand and I’m not sure I’ve managed to do it.

The other project is a piece of serial fiction I’ve been working on for quite a while. Explaining its format is tough, its definitely experimental, but I’m excited to see if it’ll fly. It’s a pulpy story with a definite arc and ending. Sort of an ensemble cast thing.

Well, it ain’t much, but at least I’ve introduced the children. Next time we’ll get into why you should love them.

lonely lunch

Given enough time alone I inevitably begin freaking myself out. I suspect this may be the big brother reflex running free and unfettered, like a bully turning on his own minion when nothing else presents itself for a bit of sport.
A bowl of miniwheats becomes full of ridiculous doubt: just why weren’t those two miniwheats better seperated from each other? Shouldn’t you have taken a longer look at it before just shoveling it into your mouth? What if some kamikaze powderpost beetle gave its life to gorge in the final moments of wheat formation, it’s bloated body absorbing the seperation blade without allowing the two suggested serving sizes to split?

Given enough time alone, I inevitably begin freaking myself out.

I suspect this may be the big brother reflex running free and unfettered, like a bully turning on his own minion when nothing else presents itself for a bit of sport.

A bowl of miniwheats becomes full of ridiculous doubt: just why weren’t those two mini-wheats better seperated from each other? Shouldn’t you have taken a longer look at it before just shoveling it into your mouth? What if some kamikaze powder post beetle gave its life to gorge in the final moments of wheat formation, it’s bloated body absorbing the separation blade without allowing the two suggested serving sizes to split?

C'mon, CNN

CNN asks the tough questions

From a while ago, but I’ve only just re-discovered it on my drive.

I think CNN should have really dug to the real questions for the article: Should your wife have any friends? Should your wife speak unless spoken to? Should your wife spend so long in the kitchen “cleaning” in an attempt to throw you off about how many Bloody Marys she’s had to slam to be able to sit through your tedious hawing at According To Jim reruns?

The first actual question that comes to mind is: Should CNN allow people suffering from marital uncertainty to post news articles on their front page?

More Wild Things

CNN has an article up reporting that some parents are complaining about the Where The Wild Things Are movie.

Might I suggest they stick to watching things more their speed, and leave the good movies for the kids smart enough to understand them.

Here’s something they can get excited about:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67OH2qmxz20]

[If I wasn’t clear enough in my last post, I thought the film was fantastic, and so did the two six year olds I brought with me.]

Top Go Go Putt Putt

As I’ve mentioned previously, we’ve recently plugged the TV back into the feeding tubes. It’s definitely had me thinking about the entertainments I blow time on, and a post earlier today by Warren Ellis – regarding the BBC show Top Gear – reminded me of a thought I wanted to follow through.

First though, Ellis’ statement:

Does it not bother anyone that the most beautifully and ambitiously shot (and soundtracked) programme on BBC television is in fact TOP GEAR? – more

He later adds that he’s a fan of the show, and I should mention that I am as well, but I shouldn’t be. I’m not a big car guy – sure, cars are a neat technology that I appreciate for getting me places, but I couldn’t identify 95% of the cars I pass on the road, nor do I spend Friday nights watching Cannonball Run. Still, if I pass an episode of Top Gear while flipping through the guide, I can’t help but stop.

Why?

First a sample to demonstrate:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hovbx6rvBaA]

It’s a four wheeled box, but how can you not take on Jeremy Clarkson’s enthusiasm?

More importantly though: the huge industrial set (watch for the wrecked truck in the background), the kinetic camera movement and editing, the soundtrack, and of course the ridiculously expensive, high speed appliances – everything on the show feels crafted to the hilt – it’s design fetishism, top to bottom.

Self-serve drive thru

Things have been madness lately, pregnancy should really come with a hibernation period – for everyone involved. I did however come up with a quick list of creative gift ideas for those people who will shortly be hassling me for birthday/Christmas suggestions.

  • An audible subscription – Audible is an audio book site that has a library full of stuff I’d like to have on my iPhone.
  • If none of the others on this list tickles your fancy, a Kivo certificate would make an excellent choice. Essentially it’s the equivalent of giving cash, but in the interim the money is micro-lent to people in need. Feel good about not putting any thought into your gift!