Sunday, February 28, 2010

This close to another miracle

On any given day, I would boo when Ryan Miller takes the ice and cheer wildly when Sidney Crosby scores an overtime goal.  Especially a sweet one under the pads of a goalie.  But not today.  Today it was a lot different.  The gold medal match of the 2010 Winter Olympics was exciting, fast paced and heartbreaking.  I never expected Team U.S.A. to advance to the gold medal round, especially in the face of such teams as Team Canada and Team Russia, but when they beat Canada in the preliminary round, I thought they might have a good chance for a medal, certainly not gold.  My hopes dwindled more and more as the minutes of the gold medal match ticked away.  The U.S. trailed until the final 25 seconds of regulation time.  Zach Parise tied it up with an awesome goal.  My entire house went crazy.  Even Katie was screaming.  But then 7 minutes and 40 seconds into overtime, Sid pulled another clutch goal.  It was disappointing to see the U.S. get so close and miss the gold.  But we will take home silver and the U.S. team played well beyond my expectations.  Good Job guys!

A Bad Start to Anyone’s Week

I have been a little lax in my updates lately.  I will try to get out at least a few posts per week.  Here is why I have been not posting. 

Last Saturday started as most, woke up, showered, helped get the kids (the boys, not the little girl, I don’t know Jack about dressing little girls), started the grocery list and then things went downhill quick.  My throat started to hurt, my head started to hurt, and I could feel my temperature rising.  It happens every year, unfortunately right around St. Valentine’s Day, I get sick, so sick that I am bed ridden for a few days.  I hate it.  My wife hates it.  I blame it on work this time.  I worked many, many hours the previous week and put my body in the type of condition ready for this.  But being sick in not what I want to talk about.

I want to talk about Netflix and what a wonderful service they provide.  Nothing beats having Netflix and being sick.  In various states of consciousness and delirium, I got to see several movies without ever having to leave the comfort of my sofa.

  • The Royal Tenebaums
  • Following
  • Adventureland
  • Year One
  • The Taking of Pelham 123
  • Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist
  • Chocolate
  • Law Abiding Citizen

If you like to watch movies and television, and don’t have Netflix, you need to get it.  If you have Netflix and don’t have a Netflix enabled device attached to your TV, you are missing out.  Netflix  has made a commitment to put more and more big titles available for instant viewing.  A recent deal with Warner Bros. will delay new releases of Warner Bros. titles, but make more of those titles available for streaming.

I have my Xbox 360 connected to my television in the basement and through it, I can stream Netflix.  But Xbox is not the only device that allows you to do this.  PS3, DVRs, BluRay players, and soon the Wii allow you to stream content directly to your television.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Lost: The Lighthouse

I think my theory is dead in the water.  I can no longer see Not Locke/Smokey as the good guy.  I still don’t know what he is recruiting for, my guess it is just an army of supporters to help take the temple.  There must be something in there that Smokey needs in order to leave the Island.  Looking back through past episodes, it appears that Smokey may have “infected” Danielle as well, since she has shown similar behavior as the Evil Claire.  I don’t think that Smokey can possess bodies that have been killed on the island.  There have been plenty of them, too many to enumerate.  He may have possessed Christian Shephard when his body landed on the island and was subsequently never found. 
There was much more talk of the “candidates.”  There is a candidate #108, that is not currently on the island, but is on his/her way.  We haven’t seen his/her name yet, and probably won’t until that person shows up.  My guess it will be a returning character, possibly Walt (I would love to know what gave him special powers and if it was related to the island) or Aaron (possibly his grandmother is flying him home to Australia).  I think all of the other characters that have left the island are dead: Desmond, Whidmore, Michael.  We also got a little peak that Austin (Kate) is candidate #51 when Jack and Hurley were at the lighthouse.
Instead of coming up with a new theory, I wanted to take a more general approach and try to determine what the overall theme of the “answers” will be or under what context the answers will appear.  Here are the possibilities I see.  (Please note that I may throw in some baby theories to try to provide an example of what I mean)
  • Religious – something similar to my Lucifer theory.  I really don’t see how they can end the show with some heavenly ascension or hell-bound descent.  It’s still possible but I think it really is unlikely.  I would really like it to go in this direction because it would be completely new concept for TV.
  • Scientific – where are all of the answers can be explained by science or pseudo-science.  The entire Darma initiative, the research, etc. play heavily to this theme, but with all of the dead coming back to life, and demonic-like possession, I don’t think the answers will be scientific ones.
  • Science Fiction – this takes a much more liberal approach to the Scientific theme.  I could imagine the “answers” to be something like – Jacob and Smokey are actually aliens sent to protect the planet which they do from their island.  One views it as his mission to find someone to replace them, the other just wants off this rock and to return home.  They could explain all of the weird technology, time travel, teleportation, etc.  I find this could possibly be a potential ending to this story.  It may be a little cliché, especially for those of us that have read hundreds of books and seen dozens of movies that have similar themes.
  • Preternatural/Paranormal -  this is similar to the religious, but removing some higher being(s).  Jacob and Smokey are Earthly, but more human that human.  I haven’t put much thought into this one yet.  Maybe after next week I can add more to it.
Well, it is getting late.  Thanks for stopping by, please feel free to comment (I would like to know who you think Jack’s baby’s momma is).  I have a couple more posts in the pipeline concerning a bunch of movies I just saw.
I’m on a horse.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lost: The Substitute

“What I am is trapped, for so long I don’t know what it is to be free.”

After tonight’s Locke-centric episode, I still want to believe that Not Locke/Smoke Monster is the good guy. There are so many things in The Substitute that could shift the balance either way. Richard’s remarks about how Not Locke is going to kill everyone (leaning towards Not Locke is evil), the list of “candidates” and how Jacob pulled everyone’s strings (Not Locke is good), when Locke threw away the white rock and tipped the scales. Who was the cherubic little boy that appeared twice and told Not Locke that “you cannot kill him, you know the rules?”  Is this little boy another angel, warning Michael of the rules of Lucifer's banishment or interfering with humanity?

Could Lost really be that spiritual/religious?  I think it would be a very risky venture even for ABC/Disney to base a program on something that religious in nature.  That is the main reason why I don't think my theory holds water.  I think it would be very cool if this entire show was a take on the classic Christian battles of good versus evil, but I find it hard to believe that this would be inclusive enough for a major network to air for 6 years.  But it is hard to deny the symbolism of the very last scene of tonight's episode, Sawyer responding "Hell yes" to Locke and the firebathed smile on Locke's.

One thing that gave me pause tonight was seeing Shephard on Jacob’s list. I have heard at least 2 people say in previous episodes that Jack was not on the “list.” But there could 3 other Shephards, Christian (but he is dead and would have been crossed off), Claire (who may not bear the Shephard name, but she is by blood) and Aaron (again by blood). My vote is for Aaron, because there exists the prophecy by the fortune teller that Aaron plays some large part in the future. A lot of people on the island wanted the baby, but was it just because a baby was born on the island without dying or is there something else?

That's all I have on Lost tonight.  Let me know what you thing.  Please feel free to post your comments and theories.

An Ode to the Old Spice commercial

Look at the blog, now look away, now look back at the blog. Sadly I am making this stuff as I go along. Now look at your hand, you are holding a mouse, now look back at the blog. Oh no, you are clicking away. C’ya

Friday, February 12, 2010

My Droid is now complete

Unfortunately I am not referring to R2-D2. He is still a work in progress in the cold, cold garage. I am referring to my Motorola Droid. Tonight I downloaded the one app that caused me to be jealous of all of you iPhone owners. The Discovery Channel app has finally come to the Android platform. For 3 months now, I have had to view all of the Mythbuster outtakes from my computer and not my phone. Not anymore.

If you ask me, I will tell you that I love the Droid. If you ask my wife, she will say she hates it, and hates that I have it.

Favorite Apps:

  • Gmail & Google Talk – especially the integration of my Gmail and Facebook contacts
  • Google Maps
  • Seesmic – Twitter client
  • FIOS Mobile – manage my DVR
  • Google Sky Map – the kids and I have fun with this, especially since they are learning some astronomy in school

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Lost: Someone else likes my theory too

I just read this on Dark UFO,

Lost – What Kate Does

First let me say that if you haven't watched the 02.09.2010 episode, then you may not want to read any further. Tonight's episode was Kate-centric, following her "new" timeline, i.e. where the plane lands in LAX and she steals the cab, etc. The new timeline certainly has some interesting twists and turns, but I have don't have any new theories on where it is going yet.

My focus tonight was on Dogan and what happened to Sayid. Who is the new guy? Is he like Richard, it seems like he has been there for a while. Is he the Head Priest of the Church of Jacob?

Here are the facts we know (haha I said "know"):

  • Dogan is the leader of the Templites
  • The Templites guard some type of Fountain of Youth that can heal wounds
  • The Fountain isn't working like it should
  • Dogan believes that Sayid is "claimed" and needs to be poisoned
  • Dogan and the Templites are protecting themselves from the Smoke Monster
Of course, I don't know what any of that means, but I am still sticking with my Jacob = Lucifer, MIB = Michael theory. If Dogan believes that Sayid has been "claimed," then it could be the same sort of possession that Locke is currently under. Just like MIB is using Locke's image, maybe now it is Jacob possessing Sayid. Dogan mentioned that it is an evil that will grow inside him, and that the same thing happened to Claire, who we saw at the end sporting a Danielle-like hairdo and running around the jungle armed and setting traps. Maybe the same thing happened to Christian Sheppard when 815 crashed the first time. I think this supports my theory a little more. And why was the Smoke Monster in the temple when Danielle's crew arrived? Were the Templites there at the same time, and if they were, why did they not mind the Smoke Monster then?

After watching LA X Part 2 again tonight, I noticed two additional things that I thought added credibility to my theory that I didn't add to my previous Lost post. When the Not Locke/MIB was describing to Ben how the Real Locke felt at the time of his death, it sounded to me like he believed Locke's death was a good thing, that it released him from the pain and suffering that he had carried with him his entire life. He said that Locke did not want to leave the island and go home, once he attained "Eden," he didn't want to return. The Not Locke also mentioned that his ultimate goal was to "go home." If I apply it to the theory, then the Archangel Michael, having had Lucifer killed, could now return to heaven and leave his post of watching over earth and humanity.

I am also considering a different theory that Jacob and MIB are actually Cain and Abel (yet another religious reference). Cain slew Abel in a fit of jealousy, because Abel had God's favor. Cain was cursed by God to leave Eden and was forced to wander the Earth, bearing a mark so no man would kill him. Abel, being considered the first martyr, was then chosen to pass judgment on the dead (possibly another tie to Anubis). I have to give this one some more thought…

It's funny that my 8 years of Catholic school may finally be paying off.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Google Buzz

I just got the Buzz. The Buzz I am talking about is Google's big announcement today. The option is now available in my Gmail and it is also working on my Droid. You can check out my profile here. So far I have Google Reader, this blog, Twitter, and Flickr all linked up. I have no idea how or if I am going to use it. I guess I will give it the same attention I give all of the other social networking outlets.

Celebrate the 9

No, I'm not talking about Slipknot, but I did hear that Stone Sour is in the studio working on another album.  I am talking about the Neil Gaiman's 9th blogiversary.  So go to his blog and help him celebrate his blogiversary.  I did, you can see my pic in 2nd row, 7th pic from the left.

I am a huge fan of Neil Gaiman.  His entire body of work is amazing, Sandman, Neverwhere, Anansi Boys, The Graveyard Book, etc.  I haven't read or seen everything that he has done, but I am working on it.  If you let me, I will talk endlessly about him and his work.  You have been warned.  I am sure you will be hearing more about him from me in the near future.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Lost: Season 6

Well, the end is close.  The sixth and final season of Lost started Tuesday night with a bang.  I have been waiting almost 9 months for this and I was not disappointed.  I am not going to bore you with a synopsis of the 2 hour episode.  But I want to jot down a few of the theories that I have.

Jacob as Lucifer
I am beginning to think more and more that the Man in the Black Shirt or the Not Jacob or... whatever his name is, is actually the "good" guy.  The reasons I believe this are the allusions to Lucifer.  Lucifer, meaning "light bearer", was chief among the archangels, the most high and most beautiful of the angels.  He was cast from heaven for his pride and his refusal to bow to Adam.  Lucifer vows to poison the earth and the sons of man.  He uses lies and deceit to con man into sin.  In Lost, Jacob is portrayed as the fair skinned, fair haired one, while the man in the black shirt is dark and rough.  Jacob is handsome and charismatic while the MIB is surly and angry.  Jacob comes to signify a "light" in everyone's lives, a direction to follow.

Jacob's influence in the lives of the main characters suggests that his intentions may not be that good at all.  Jacob "touches" all of the main characters' lives in such a way to bring them all to the Island, but also look at how and when he does it.  For Kate, he rescues her when she is young, paying for a stolen lunch box.  Does this tell Kate that crime is ok, as long as she can get away with it?  He meets Sawyer at a young age, at the funeral of his parents.  He lets Sawyer have a pen that he uses to write the letter to the man that caused his parents' death.  Does this help fuel Sawyer's thirst for revenge, instead of letting go and maybe having a different life?  He comes to Locke when he is at death's door, finally rid of all of his problems and the hard luck he had his entire life.  But Jacob "touches" him and brings him back, to continue to seek out his father, and sustains his string of hardships.  The most awful was when he distracts Sayid, allowing Nadia to be hit by the car.

In the final episode of season 5, Jacob says a few things that lead me to believe his intentions are not "good".  The man in the black shirt says to Jacob, "They come.  They fight.  They destroy.  They corrupt.  It always ends the same."  Jacob responds "It only ends once, anything that happens before that is progress."  Is this a reference to Judgement Day, the end of times, when Lucifer/Satan can finally finish his sentence on earth?  Does Jacob want the destruction and corruption?    

The Man in the Black Shirt as the Archangel Michael

Maybe the man in the black shirt is actually the Archangel Michael, who is described in the bible and other works, as the commander of the Lord's army, the viceroy of Heaven, which happens to be Lucifer's former position.  Michael is the sometimes portrayed as the sword of God and the angel of destruction, maybe that is why the MIB sometimes appears as the smoke monster.  Maybe the loophole that "Michael" talks of, is away to end Lucifer/Jacob's scourge of humanity?  Michael is considered the patron of humanity, being the first of the angels to bow to Adam, keeping a watchful eye over Adam and Eve after their expulsion from Eden.  Michael may patiently bide his time, watching over Jacob/Lucifer, to protect humanity from his plots.

And I just can't reconcile the fact that Locke, even in death, is a bad guy.  It just seems that after everything that has happened, it would be horrible to make the zombie/MIB Locke turn out to the be the evil doer.  And to top that off, after all of the things the "Others" have done, the kidnapping of Walt, the murder of countless others, the torture and torment of the survivors, we now believe them to the be the good guys?

Anyway, that's all I have for now.  I am sure after the next episode I can add some more.

Friday, February 5, 2010


As a parent of three and one that works from home, I find it hard to find things to make for dinner that the kids will eat and that my wife and I enjoy.  My wife and I both try to find new recipes in various different places, online, magazines, relatives, etc. and sometimes we come across one that works for us. 

Here is one that we got from my wife's aunt.

Spicy Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

  • 1 pound ground white chicken meat
  • 1/2 small onion-grated
  • 2 cloves garlic-grated
  • 1/2 C chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 C hot sauce
  • Garnishes-blue cheese dressing, carrot sticks and celery sticks

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken, onion, garlic, parsley, paprika and cayenne.  
  3. Season with salt and black pepper.
  4. Take about two tablespoons of meat mixture and roll between the palms of your hand to form a meatball about the size of a golf ball.  (I use a cookie scooper)
  5. Place meatballs on a rimmed baking sheet lightly coated with cooking spray.  
  6. Pop them in the oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until they are cooked through.
  7. While the meatballs are baking, heat the hot sauce in a large skillet. Toss the baked meatballs in the hot sauce to coat.
  8. Serve the meatballs with celery and carrot sticks with the blue cheese dressing for dipping.
  9. Makes 16 meatballs.
Instead of an appetizer or hors d'oeuvre, we made served them in Italian steak rolls as meatball subs.  We used a mild hot sauce so the kids didn't explode, but it could certainly use something hotter.  The kids ate them and we had enough left over for two more sandwichs the next day.