Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Magic of Film

Visiting the cinema last night to see the new Star Trek Film reminded us of how many great films there are out at the moment, or coming out in the next few weeks. I love film and would like to go to the cinema much more frequently but now we tend to save it for films that really benefit from being seen on the big screen, such as science fiction movies.

There are however at least three films I would like to see on the big screen within the next few weeks.

I have just watched Night at the Museum again on the TV and the sequel is currently at the cinema which I want to see. I really enjoyed the first film, which for anyone that doesn't know is about a night watchman at The Natural History Museum in New York who gets a surprise on his first night when he discovers that all of the displays and occupants come to life for the duration of the night.

Its a lovely film full of adventure and magic, it reminds me of Jumanji, another story with a very similar feel that I can watch over and over again.

I also really want to see Angels and Demons which is out at the moment. I read the book a few years back and thoroughly enjoyed it. As it is set predominantly in Rome and focuses on many of the historic buildings I think it is a must for the big screen.

I am hoping to be impressed with the film in terms of the interpretation of the story and am hopeful that Ewan McGregor can produce a worthy performance in his portrayal of the character Camerlengo Patrick McKenna.

A few weeks back I went to see Monsters Vs Aliens 3D at the cinema with my sister and nephew, and excellent movie by the way, but while we were there we saw a trailer for another 3D children's movie called Coraline.

It looked quite dark for a children's film but was intriguing. The animation was excellent and I think would really suit 3D and I am hoping I get to go to that.


Wolverine is also out, detailing the background of the X-Men character and I think that would be a good one for the cinema.

Finally the new Harry Potter movie is out next month. I have not read any of the Potter books, I had a go but did not get on with them, however I have enjoyed the films although I know I am missing out on a lot of additional details to the story in it's entirety.

I do not expect I will get to see them all but will do my best!

Image Credits:
www.sodahead.com/.../
http://www.screenrush.co.uk/film/galerievignette_gen_cfilm=109640.html
http://www.beyondhollywood.com/ayelet-zurer-is-vittoria-vetra-in-angels-and-demons/
http://i362.photobucket.com/albums/oo63/film2009/angels-demons-Carlo-Ventresca.jpg
http://angels-and-demons--trailer.blogspot.com/2008/06/angels-and-demons-pictures.html

To Boldly Go

We went to see the new Star Trek film last night. We are both big fans of the series and have been awaiting the new film with some anticipation.

I watched the original series with my family when I was growing up. I have clear memories of riding my bike up and down the driveway of our house and then being called in for Star Trek every week. I think it was Thursday nights.

I loved the original and particularly the play between Kirk (William Shatner) Spok (Leonard Nimoy) and Bones (DeForest Kelly) although I think Bones was my favourite. I loved his sense of humour. The shows may have aged somewhat now in terms of effects and story lines but the spin between the crew is still very engaging.

Later on in life, and after it had run once on the TV, my partner introduced me to Star Trek - The Next Generation with the likes of Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes and Brent Spiner and I soon became addicted to the show.

I occasionally watched Deep Space Nine and Voyager however never really felt they had the same impact as TNG.

-Although I thought the climax of DS9 when Worf kills Gauron was pretty cool, that Klingon had got far too big for his boots!-

I never really got into Enterprise, I was not too sure about Scott Bakula from Quantum Leap as a Captain (too nice) but also I think it was hard for them to come up with new ideas for stories given the three series that had preceded in the 90's.

We have a friend who liked it but he said they had a very nice female interest and concentrated on using her to pull in the viewers. In one episode two members of the crew, the attractive Vulcan included, became infected with a disease. The treatment involved being in quarantine, stripping off and rubbing lotion into each other!

Don't get me wrong, it made me laugh to hear about that, and T'Pol is a very attractive female. And as with 7 of 9 from Voyager there's nothing wrong with a little sexy female interest but the series never really caught my interest.

I do think though that since the original series there has been an attraction to a character that is striving to compute humanity or understand their own. From Spok, to Data, 7 of 9, Worf and even T'Pol.


There has always been one crew member searching for the meaning of their lives. If this character also happens to be very attractive then all the better. (I have always had a soft spot for Data.)

Anyway, obviously I have seen all of the films and was excited about the prospect of this one if not a little apprehensive about the original crew being recreated with new actors. I need not have worried!

The cast were excellent, the film exciting, the story fairly original and the effects awesome. I actually jumped in the film last night at one bit when a terrifying beast was chasing Kirk, it growled at the screen and I jumped...twice! I can't remember the last time that happened, it was such a good beasty, and not even particularly relevant to the main story line.

I would also recommend this film to non Trekkie's, if you like Science Fiction it's a good film to see and does not rely of a nostalgia for the original crew and a desire to see them explore the galaxy once again.

However if you are a fan I think you will be really impressed with the casting and performances.

Star Trek 2009 - 8/10

Image Credits: trekmovie.com/.../
blogs.sj-r.com/brianmackey/index.php/archives/496
www.hyscience.com/.../2006/10/iran_star_trek.php
www.millionaireplayboy.com/mpb/?p=2167
www.spartantailgate.com/forums/msu-red-cedar-...
worldblogosphere.com/tag/action/

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Something for the Weekend

We have some nice plans for this weekend; we are, as usual for this time of year, addicted to gardening and the purchase of new plants. Our garden when we moved in was pretty empty so we have been able to plant trees and establish beds over the past year, now almost filled with a selection of shrubs and plants. Once a day, sometimes twice, we have a wander round checking on all of the plants to look for progress, new flowers, fruit developing and damage from the occasional passing dog paw or football! It is a lovely time of the day and a relaxing event.

We are lucky enough to share our garden with a growing population of birds, frogs and newts. The Starlings are bringing their demanding young in every day for a feed and bathing demonstration!

This weekend we want to purchase 4 more Pyracantha to fill some planting pits we have next to the rear wall of the house. They will make the patio area much more attractive and provide a dense, hardy plant with fruit to the birds tastes, particularly the Blackbird. They may even provide a good nesting site in maturity although I suspect the presence of our dogs will prevent birds nesting in our garden as they just won't feel safe enough. Thankfully we have many mature trees along the front of our house which provide a variety of nesting habitat for the birds in our part of the village.

We also need to cut the lawn this weekend. The dogs pretty much trashed the lawn within a month of moving in. It was not their fault, we got them a year ago last Sunday. The event was heralded by 4 days of torential rain followed by a very wet summer so the soil got churned up. They have also taken to digging (I find it hard to tell them off as they are dogs and it is what they do!!).

Anyway, early Spring we began a restoration program of the two sections of lawn in the back garden and it has been much more successful that we thought. We hope to have the lawn fully restored by the end of this summer so it will be a bit more durable during the winter.

We have a front lawn which is open onto the footpath at the front of the house. As such it is not used by us as a garden space but is in fitting with the area and provides a lovely view from the front room down stairs. The Blackbirds like is as it is mossy and full of grubs for them. The openness of the area also makes them feel a little safer as they have planty of warning of advancing cats. It is however currently about 5 inches long and in need of a cut. I have been holding off as there are daisies through the lawn in flower and they look lovely however a tidy is now required.

We have discussed establishing a hedge around the front garden so we could use it more. We have common land adjacent to the house so folk tend to walk aross that and cut across our front lawn as they pass. That's fine however if we put a small hedge up we could sit out there with the dogs and have a barrier to keep them in and passing people and their pets out. Anyway that's a garden project for another time!

I love the picture of the long handle grass cutting scissors but assure you I will not be using those! Although it would be very theraputic!

Yesterday I found a great online book with a wealth of fruit and vegetable smoothy recipes and so this weekend am planning to stock up the fruit bowl and full the vegetable rack so I am prepared and can endulge myself next week. You really feel the benifits of such drinks immediately; they are healthy and filling too.

I can be quite lazy when it comes to food. In the past when I have lived on my own I frequently bought 7 portions of one thing I liked and then ate that all week. It saved on thought and time for my meal. It is very different cooking for two as I want to cook something nice for my partner but also food is so much better shared so you put the time in. I always find it hard to get enthuisiastic about cooking for one.

I am hoping that the smoothies will prove convenient as a regular part of my daily diet and will allow me to eat well long term with out too much preparation and planning.

I have cooking spurts where I do a big baking day and for a few weeks we eat very well however there is always a lapse where I just dont have the energy or imagination to do it for a few days and I do so hate giving into convenience food.

It is my responsability to make sure that both of us eat well and enjoy the benifits of good food. Now I am aware that bad food can not only affect your physical health but your mental state too it seems so silly to be feeling off simply because you are eating badly! There are enough things in life to give you a bad day without it being self inflicted by your diet!!

So that leaves two things, the car to wash; my truck actually had a good clean last weekend but could do with a hover out. The sites I visit for work tend to result in mud, stones and dust collecting in the Cab and I like to keep on top of it. I also have to clean out the back often as dog hairs collect and the windows get covered in dog nose prints!

This weekend it is predominantly the turn of my partners car. It does not get cleaned so often as it does not need it however as we have the same occupation his car suffers from the same abuses and is currently desperately in need of a vacuum and wash, it's not as bad as the picture but not too far off either!

And finally something I am really looking forward to. I have been planning for some time to set up a website to sell pictures and other art projects on and am going to seek some advice on website design this weekend.

I have looked at ones online you can do yourself however there seems to be some bigger issues when it comes to setting up a relaible and secure payment system for your customer so I am going to go and ask some questions and then get this thing off the ground. I am collating images for the site and have the text planned. There is a very good shop in our local town who have given me advice before so I will start with them and see how things progress.

What ever you have planned this weekend I hope the sun is with you and you have a great time.

Image Credits: doroteos2.wordpress.com/2009/05/
www.reencoded.com/.../
www.happynews.com/.../beginner-gardening.htm
www.dsn2006.org/.../food_processing_machinery/2/
autos.aol.com/gallery/car-wash-myths

I have just renamed this post, it was called Plans for the Weekend however as my finger hovered over the Publish Post button one of my favourite pop songs came into my head, titled Something for the Weekend.

Pop music is not my favourite genre however I do like good pop. My fella does not but he does say I can pick a good pop song! It's still cheese, but its good cheese! So I have renamed this post and am going to post the song for your entertainment!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Return to Computing

Well, I am never listening to Dell again! I was not going to complain about them but I just had to get that out!! The good news is my PC is back up and running, with a shiny new security system and all is well in my PC world.

I had an interesting day today, there's too much that has gone on in the past few weeks to write in one post so I am just going to stick to today for now.

Today was a day of few achievements; there were meetings, phone calls, spreadsheets and another series of unexplainable errors with our in-house tree management system that have fried my brain and made me question my sanity however I did manage a doodle that I liked and consider to be a good achievement!


I believe that doodling is supposed to be sub conscious, in which case I guess this is where I wanted to be today! This is a snap shot memory of my last walk on the Malverns.

It's good to be back blogging!

Thursday, May 07, 2009

What no posts?

Greetings all! I thought I had better put up a brief explanation of my extended absence from blogging. My PC has gone kaput!

Ok it's not quite as serious as that and it's a long story but basically I need to take it to someone to offload all saved files so I can do a complete restore to factory settings to rectify the problem...or so I am told!

I am currently staying with my Mum and Dad for a week hence this post!

I have to say I after the internet service interuption and then this I am almost used to not having a PC however normal service will be resumed as soon as possible!

Image Credit: Magdene.com

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