Posts tagged ‘movies’

This is going to be good!

StarWars_TFA

StarWars_LS

OMG!  OMG!!

It really looks like Star Wars.  No sign of the shiny, overproduced prequels.  No sign of Jar Jar.

It looks like a J.J. Abrams film! Dark. Ominous. Exciting.  New suped-up X-Wing fighters, Tie fighters, the Millennium Falcon and a brand new lightsabre.  I feel like I’m 10 again.  Can’t wait to take my Boyz to the show.  Is it December 2015 yet??

 

… And What a Great Year It Was

So, it’s the last day of the year.  I woke up with a bit of a cold this morning.  And there were no eggs in the fridge.  But other than that, it was as fine a day as any other in 2011.

There were some very fine days in the past year.  Being the last day of the year, and all, I thought I’d put together a blog entry remembering those occasions that were truly gifts from the Creator.

GETTING ENGAGED – By far, the most significant moment for us.  With my beautiful partner Deborah and her girls, we boarded a horse-drawn carriage for an evening ride through Central Park in New York.  In view of the crisp moonlight and sparkling lights of Park Avenue, I get down on one knee.  Still shocked, and über emotional, Deb said yes.  It was a beautiful night and a beautiful trip.  Man, I Love NY!  It also takes a lot of clandestine planning and investment management to get engaged.  From the large piece of carbon crystal gemstone on her finger, to the interim family vacation to NYC, I wanted to make sure it was unforgettable to my betrothed.  Wedding date:  Cinco be Mayo.  Location:  Playa Del Carmen, Mexico.

THE TRUE MEANING OF WINTER – I have finally found the true meaning of winter.  For years, I would huddle up in my warm little house and wait the wicked season out.  Forget ice fishing, snowmobiling – too cold for me.  But this March, on another memorable family getaway to Mont Tremblant, I discovered skiing.  OMG!!!  Overwhelming fun, exhilaration, breathtaking landscapes, and closeness with Gzhemnidoo.  Skiing is the Creator’s sport.  Physical, spiritual, mental and emotional exercise.  And yes, they have size 15 ski boots.

NEW YEARS IN SOUTH AMERICA — Last year at this time we were in Iquitos, Peru. The heart of the Peruvian Amazon, we ushered in the New Year with my father-in-law James, Rossana, family and friends. We got to see other indigenous cultures and experience the great Amazon River. Amazing experience. Particularly our time in Iquitos, handling the monkey and fishing for piranha.

CAREER DIRECTIONS – On May 30, I began my career as a Director in the Ontario Public Service.  Following an intensive recruitment process, I was appointed the first Director of Aboriginal Relations for the Ministry of Transportation.  The highlight so far was establishing the new Branch from scratch.  Developing the mandate, a strategic framework on , hiring staff and delving into the policy work.  It’s nice to be able to mold without mold removal and create a legacy piece.  It’s also great to be working with First Nation and Métis communities again.

VISITING DEB’S FAMILY – In my blog, I described our summer family vacation as nearly two weeks of visits.  But perhaps the most memorable visit, was being introduced to Deborah’s Grandma.  Her bingo-loving matriarch was spry, kindly and opinionated, especially when it comes to her family.  We paid a visit to Deb’s reserve, Pabineau First Nation.  We spent some time at Uncle Fisher’s, as well as Chief David’s place.  Deb and I took a romantic four-wheeler ride to Pabineau Falls where she shared some of her childhood memories.

WEIGHT WATCHERS – Lost twenty pounds in 2011.  Stepped back on the scale this morning and found out I gained it all back.  I did enjoy working out at the gym.  I need to find some time to do that again.  We’ll see what 2012 brings.

KATHERINE FAITH – got her driver’s (learners) permit in Nova Scotia, celebrated her sweet sixteen and moved into a new home with her newly married mom and her partner Ricky.  She looked so beautiful in the bridesmaid’s dress.  So proud she worked in Toronto this summer and saved her money.

JASMINE – applied to Bill Crother’s Secondary School and is looking forward to superstardom in the sports high school.  She been playing on a competitive volleyball team, the Stingers.

GRIFFIN – has discovered reading in a big way.  Like his big sister, he started with manga but really transformed by enjoying the Hunger Games.  Griffin played offensive lineman during the Bulldogs summer football program.

MIIGWANS – is looking forward to playing summer football again next year.  He wishes football was all year long.  It’s so great to see him pick up a sport and try really hard with it.

FIONA – has become a social animal in the past year, able to be friends with everybody.  The holiday season has been a boon for her, hanging with Rowena, Michelle, Jaicee, Griffin, Miigwans, Alie, Ty, Cayden and Aria.

THE TABLET  – I’ve used every piece of mobile technology:  iPad, iPhone, Android, Blackberry and Palm.  In my opinion, nothing beats the Galaxy Tab 10.1.  Apple technology is way to proprietary and static while the interface is stiff.  Android provides us power users the flexibility to get the device to do what we want it to.  I use it for telephony, music, photos, reading books, magazines, news, television, movies, social networking, web browsing, and some web development.  Recently, I’ve been bringing it into the office and using it for work and at meetings.  Damn fine piece of technology.  My honey got it for me for my Birthday.  Miigwetch, my Love.

TV SHOW – I have discovered Fringe, by new favorite TV show.  Great series created by J.J. Abrams.  Wicked storylines and great characters.  Kind of like having the X Files back again.  I’ve watched all episodes so far, but ironically, none of them on television.  I’ve watched them exclusively on the internet.  Looking forward to my first-ever, new episode of Fringe in 2012.

BEST MOVIE – Rise of the Planet of the Apes.  The movie explains a lot from the cult classic film franchise.  I seen it three times at the theatre, a few times on my tablet, and my Boyz gave it to me for Christmas.

Yeah…  [reclines back in his chair.]  Good times.  Good times.

My Oscar Picks

I’m pretty excited about the Academy Awards this Sunday.  2010 was a pretty good year for movies.  Nothing over-the-top spectacular, but a lot of solid, great movies with great performances and excellent film making.  Here are my top picks:

Best Picture: The King’s Speech.  I’m going with the odds on this one.  It was also my favorite film of the year.  I called this one back in the fall before it was even nominated.

Best Actor: Colin Firth, The King’s Speech.  Amazing performance that he’ll be remembered by.  It was his acting that sparked in interest in researching the Royal family.  So poised, yet vulnerable.  The consummate actor’s actor.

Actor in a Supporting Role: Geoffrey Rush, The King’s Speech.  Christian Bale may very well win this for his role in The Fighter.  But I was moved by Rush’s performance.

Best Actress: Natalie Portman, Black Swan.  They often give this category to the “name”.  Still an incredible movie and a brilliant performance.  Can she really dance like that?

Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Melissa Leo, The Fighter.  Don’t know much about the other nominees, but I do remember Leo’s performance in The Fighter.  If I remember it, the Academy should remember it as well.

Best Director: Tom Hooper, The King’s Speech.  Best movie of the year, hands down, because of the acting and directing.

Animated Feature Film: Toy Story 3.  Didn’t see it, but an educated guess.

Art Direction: Inception.  Incredible movie, moving in and out of different realities.  Well put together.

Cinematography: Black Swan.  Many of us are not ballet aficionados, but the film making and camera work draws us in.

Costume Design: Alice in Wonderland.  Although, The King’s Speech may sweep this category too.

Best Song: We Belong Together, Toy Story 3.  Randy Newman is nominated often enough, but he’s only won once.

Visual Effects: Inception.  This is a no-brainer.  It Inception loses in the category, it will be a shame.

Best Adapted Screenplay: The Social Network.  Enjoyed this film and how they were able to adapt the screenplay from the book and court depositions.

Best Original Screenplay: The King’s Speech.  Incredible screenplay should be tops in the writing category.

Movie popcorn has fat of 12 hamburgers

Megan Ogilvie
Health Reporter
Toronto Star

The Dish: January 28, 2011

  • DISH: Medium bag of popcorn with butter topping
  • RESTAURANT: Concessions at Cineplex Odeon Queensway Cinemas
  • LOCATION: 1025 The Queensway, Etobicoke
  • PRICE: $5.79 for the popcorn; $0.79 for the butter topping
  •  Serving size: 217 grams
  • Calories: 1,319
  • Fat: 97 grams
  • Sodium: 651 mg
  • Protein: 15 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 96 grams
  • 26 Weight Watchers PointsPlus!!
  • 10 PointsPlus for the Butter Topping!!

Let’s cut straight to the facts: A medium-sized bag of popcorn with butter could get you up to 97 grams of fat, depending on how liberally the topping is applied. That’s more than what most men should consume in a day, and is between 130 and 200 per cent of the average woman’s daily allotment.

Cineplex Odeon disputes the 97-gram tally. Nutrition sites estimate a medium bag of popcorn without butter rings in at 60 grams of fat. Adding butter (especially without tracking the amount) sends the snack into the stratosphere. For some people, 97 grams is almost two days worth of fat — in a snack.

“I almost fell off my chair,” says registered dietitian Shannon Crocker, who provided comparisons to underscore just how much fat movie goers could consume while munching handfuls of popcorn.

“That amount of fat is the same as what’s found in 12 hamburgers from McDonalds. Or in 10 slices of sausage mushroom melt pizza from Pizza Pizza. Or in five large hot fudge sundaes from Dairy Queen.”

Cineplex Entertainment, which runs the Queensway Cinemas from which we purchased this bag of popcorn, is the largest movie theatre chain in the country with 132 theatres and 1,366 screens that entertain more than 70 million people a year. In 2010, Cineplex sold 7 million pounds (kernel weight) of popcorn.

Cineplex should get some nutrition kudos for switching its popping oil from coconut oil, traditionally used by movie theatres to pop kernels, to a proprietary popping oil called Vegetol. The company says this blend, launched in 2007 and which includes canola oil and artificial butter flavour, is lower in calories, fat, saturated fat and trans fat than coconut oil. Instead of going to the movies and eating their fatty popcorn, think about renting a movie and popping your own popcorn. Here are some popcorn popper reviews. It’ll not only help reduce the amount of fat you consume but also save you money.

“Regardless,” says Crocker, “97 grams is still way too much fat even if it’s a heart-healthier kind.”

The 1,319 calories — half a day’s worth for most people — is doubly offensive since one cup of plain air-popped popcorn only contains about 33 calories. People who make air-popped popcorn at home would have to eat 40 cups to equal the 1,319 calories found in this blue paper bag.

“I recommend popcorn, just not movie popcorn,” says Crocker, adding air-popped popcorn is a good-for-you snack because it is a whole grain that provides a hit of fibre. The high calories are due to the popping oil and the butter topping (Cineplex offers Lactantia clarified butter and Becel popcorn topping; we chose the real butter to test).

At 651 mg, the sodium is the least worrisome of the big three nutrition numbers. Though at about half of what the body needs in a day, 651 mg is not completely innocuous.  According to Cineplex, movie goers can get nutrition information for concession foods by asking the Guests Services team.

Few things will make movie popcorn healthy. But Crocker says there are some ways to make it a better option: Choose the smallest size. Skip the buttery topping to save between 200 and 300 calories. Steer clear of the salt shakers to avoid added sodium. Split the small size with a friend. And order water, not pop.

“A medium-size soda at the movies can run about 300 calories. You don’t want to do any more damage.”

  • DISH: Nachos with cheese sauce
  • RESTAURANT: Concessions at Cineplex Odeon Queensway Cinemas
  • LOCATION: 1025 The Queensway, Etobicoke
  • PRICE: $5.99

Compared to the bag of popcorn, the tray of nachos with two dipping pots of cheese sauce is a calorie lightweight. But with 485 calories, 25 grams of fat and 715 mg of sodium, it’s still not a healthy choice.

“It’s just not as high in calories and fat as the popcorn,” Crocker says.

The 500 calories is more than double what the average person should aim for in a snack. The 25 grams of fat is between one third and one half of what a woman should consume in a day. And the 715 mg of sodium is about half of the recommended daily allotment.

If you are a nacho lover, it’s probably best to split this tray, says Crocker. There’s not a lot of nutrition here, mostly just empty calories with fat and salt.

“It’s not the same as sprinkling cheddar cheese and chopped veggies on your nachos at home.”

The Dirty Bit and A Little Bit More

Superbowl – It’s been a couple of years since I’ve watched football in earnest. I still may, or may not watch the Superbowl on Sunday. However, my team has always been the Green Bay Packers. But I reckon I was more of a Brett Favre fan. I lost my allegiance and interest in the NFL when he moved on to other teams. Nevertheless, I’ll be wearing my cheese-head on Sunday. Prediction Pittsburgh 24, Green Bay 17.

How about those Leafs?!? – Just kidding.

Weight Watchers and Workouts – I’m still on track and everything is looking good. I’ve lost about ten pounds so far. I hope to do better at my weekend weigh-in now that I’ve included regular exercise into my routine. Using the elliptical is still tough, but I hope it will get easier as I get used to it. I’m still doing 20 minutes at a time. I watched a great documentary refuting the Bering Straight theory on my Palm while I exercised. It’s better to have a good distraction rather than listening to that annoying voice inside me saying “you can’t possible finish this.”

My new job– I’m looking forward to working with Ljuba Irwin and Roger Obonsawin at the OI Group. In my role as Director, of Governmental Relations and Business Development I will represent the interests of the OI Group in dealing with all levels of government and with First Nations across Canada. I will be developing new and existing business opportunities as well as enhancing the profile of the OI Group and marketing of their innovative human resource products and services. A notice was sent out to all OI employees, past and present, and I will begin working on negotiating a possible political resolution to the outstanding tax cases.

Tourism and Culture – It’s bittersweet to be moving on from the Ministry of Tourism and Culture. The Culture and Strategic Policy Branch has a lot of great, professional people. Certainly, all the folks that work in my Unit are top notch. On the other hand, I felt the Ministry was not able to use my skills, experience and networks to their best advantage. And although the Ontario Public Services would like to attract top, diverse talent from the Aboriginal community – they have a lot of work to do in order to retain that talent in their organization. All in all, it was a great experience and good orientation to policy within the provincial government.

The Commute – Only five more days of commuting downtown for me. The combination of driving, parking, walking, taking the subway and walking again is taxing. The average 24 km trip takes about an hour the morning and over an hour-and-a-half in the evening. Although I may complain about the commute downtown, I’m actually going to miss it a lot. It represents most of my alone time with my sweetheart. Nothing is better when she looks at me with those beautiful brown eyes and reaches over to hold my hand. The commute will now be to Brantford, but only a couple of days per week. It’s a lot further but I’m used to travelling in my car long distances. I think I’ll cope well. Now, what’s the best route through traffic?

Birdwatchers, a film by Marco Bechis

Movie Weekend – Deb and I are going to see The Rite starring Anthony Hopkins. We’re horror, suspense movie freaks. Although, I’m intrigued by a film called Birdwatchers. It’s about a small band of Guarani people in Brazil who begin to occupy a rich farm-owners land. The film shows their struggle for land, loss of their environment, poverty, suicide and how they must pose in stereotypical garb on the riverbank for boatloads of tourists. The reviews are sad but favourable. The film is cast with first-time actors and a largely, improvised script. I know it’s playing at the Bell Lightbox but I wonder if it will play closer to home?

Dirty Bit and a Little Bit More – If you can name the artists of these two song titles (without Googling) you are truly an inter-generational music-lover.  Check out the answers here.  Other tunes with “bit” in their title:  Just a Lil Bit by 50 Cent, Give a Little Bit by Supertramp, and Little Bit by Drake.

My Life in Retrospect, 2010

Really, it’s been a rather uneventful year.  Which is a good thing.  No big changes, other than another contract job in the Government of Ontario.  Had a couple of great vacations and a blissful home life.  However, a little ticked at Black Bloc anarchists and Rob Ford, two entities spurred on by angry mobs.

NEWS STORY OF THE YEAR:  The G8-G20 fiasco here in Toronto.  Our offices were closed for a day or so.  A major portion of downtown was fenced off.  Police in riot gear on every corner.  And thousands upon thousands of protesters.  For kicks, Deb and I drove through it on June 26 after a morning at the St. Lawrence Market.  Although, I can’t condone the instances of bad policing and the conduct of some individuals.  I also can’t condone the massive, systematic arrests and abuse of emergency police powers.  However, what got lost in the story was the violent protests and use of black bloc tactics by anarchists.  Sure, the police may have abused their powers – but could you imagine what would have taken place if they weren’t there?

I CHEERED for World Cup soccer.  It’s not a very big part of culture in northern Ontario.  But everyone in the city goes crazy at World Cup time.  And now wonder.  Everyone has a team to cheer for based on their nationality.  While we Anishinaabeg may never have a team to cheer for.

I JEERED Mayor Rob Ford.  Knowing George Smitherman, he was definitely the best man for the job.  Hands down, the Toronto mayoral race was also the year’s biggest political disappointment.

BEST MOVIE:  The King’s Speech.  We just seen it last night.  It is a fascinating story about King George VI.  The acting is absolutely superb.  Colin Firth is so believable in the role.  As is the Queen Mum, played by Helena Bonham Carter.  Geoffrey Rush plays the likeable speech therapist, Lionel Logue.  One of the most comedic scenes is when Logue’s wife comes home unexpectedly to discover that her husband is being paid a visit by the new King and his wife Elizabeth.  These British royalty films are great.

CAREER:  Presently, I am the manager of culture policy for the Ministry of Tourism and Culture.  I’m responsible for managing the policy direction of the Government of Ontario in the areas of heritage, archaeology, libraries, museums as well as the Ministry’s role in cultural planning, renewable energy and Aboriginal Affairs.  I have a great staff of fourteen people.  What amazes me most is the constant turnover.  Staff are always coming and going so I spend a lot of my time managing human resources, filling vacancies and making sure we’re being responsive to senior management.  It is gratifying to know that many of the things we do go a long way to preserve the rich cultural heritage of the province.

NEW WEBSITE:  I wanted to do it last year but the designer I wanted was so incredibly busy.  However, I’m satisfied with the look and feel of the design.  But what lot of people really don’t know is, I am the developer. The content, function, database operation, and programming is all me. The technology stuff is great.  The best thing about it, for the first time, the website was developed completely with open source programming.

FAMILY:  Deborah and I having the time of our lives together.  We are working on being more healthy – eating right and staying in shape.  Katherine Faith turned 15 years old, with a mind of her own, a boyfriend, pretty good judgement and aspirations of driving the car.  In fact, I took her on a couple of joy rides and she did really well.  Griffin turned 11 and Miigwans turned 8.  Jasmine turned 12 and Fiona turned 8, just like Baby.  Singing:  “When you’re eight, you can do so much more.  When you’re eight, you can walk around outdoors.”

ROAD TRIP:  These seem to be a thing of the past, as most of my road travel is limited to getting to and from Nipissing and to attend ceremonies a few times per year.  The longest road trip, once again, was a family drive to Spring Ceremonies, June-13, 2010 in Wisconsin.  A total of 2524 km.  My car just turned over 150,000 this morning.

VACATION:  Who can forget the trip to Varadero, Cuba!  Lots of great beach and swimming action, some pretty good snorkelling and great family fun with the Girls.  Deb and I also got to spend some time in Montego Bay, Jamaica in a lovely villa with our friends Joe and Fiona.

I CRIED WHEN when I found out that Warren passed away.  He was younger than me… a family man… with a young daughter and newborn twins.  So tragic.  I was glad to know him and happy to know he’s still with us through his young family.  Rest in peace, Warren Monague.

I CRINGE WHEN people on Facebook write “R.I.P.”.  If you are so thoughtful, and want to offer a sincere condolence, can’t you write out Rest in Peace?

MEMORABLE MEAL:  Steak and lobster dinner at Joe and Fionas with her uncles Robert and George.

MEMORABLE MOMENT:  Floating peacefully, about a km out from shore, in the warm, ocean water off Varadero, Cuba.  Nothing around, accept me and the Spirit.

My Movie Stats for 2010

Noomi Rapace in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

I seen 55 of the top 100 movies in 2010 at the movie theatre.  That is 10 more than last year.

  • 17 were dramas.
  • 8 were action or thrillers.
  • 14 were comedies.
  • 9 were children’s movies.  5 were animated.
  • 8 were horror movies.
  • No question, Avatar was my favorite movie I seen in 2010.  However, it doesn’t count as a 2010 movie as it came out in 2009.  But I didn’t see it until the new year.  Hands-down, it’s the best movie I’ve seen since Titanic, another James Cameron epic.

    Of all the 2010 films, The Town was my favorite.  Rivetting and honest, but violently over the top.  I’m not an action movie guy but I enjoyed this one.

    My Top 10:

    1. Avatar
    2. The Town
    3. The Social Network
    4. Inception
    5. Secretariat
    6. The Karate Kid
    7. The Girl Who Played with Fire
    8. Conviction
    9. Unstoppable
    10. How to Train Your Dragon

    Thoroughly enjoyed: The Girl Who Played with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy.  It’s not often that we get to see an entire trilogy in one year.  Great acting, excellent plot based on the Stieg Larsson books.  They are making a Hollywood version of the first movie – however, it may not hold up to this version.

    Funniest Movie: Grown-Ups.  Lots of dumb humour.  The critics hated it.  But it’s an Adam Sandler movie.  It’s exactly what I expected.  The funniest scene of the year was definitely after Steve Buscemi gets hurt and put into a full body cast, and can only stand with his arms raised in victory.  I couldn’t stop laughing.

    Scariest movie: Devil.  Not really a great year for scariness, however.  I haven’t need Paranormal Activity 2 though.

    Most bizarre: Black Swan.  It’s not in my personal top 10 but it certainly kept me interested and chuckling at the absurdity at inappropriate times.  Thoroughly enjoyed the Natalie Portman/ Mila Kunis scene.

    Still need to see: The King’s Speech.  The Fighter.

    Movies I’ve likes so much, I seen three times: Avatar

    Movie I wasn’t interested in seeing, and didn’t: Harry Potter… part 30, or whatever part it is.  I wouldn’t be surprised that the final installment of the franchise is divided into two movies.  Aren’t those kids are too old for school now?  Don’t they ever graduate from Hogwarts?  God!

    The world did not end in film in 2010. Although, another zombie virus will probably wipe out civilization beginning with Cedar Rapids, Iowa, surprisingly enough.

    Best Actor: Ben Affleck, The Town

    Best Actress: Natalie Portman, Black Swan

    Oscar Contenders: The Town, Inception, Black Swan

    I had a long, $11 nap watching: Legend of the Guardians, Cats and Dogs.

    Calories from popcorn, butter and candy eaten at the movies in 2010:  43,300

    Amount of Diet Coke/Coke Zero consumed at a movie theatre in 2010:  63.75 litres

    Approximate amount spent at movie theatres, personally and for my family, in 2009: $2549.58

    Balls, Bags and more…

    WHAT’S IN THE MEATBALLS? – We had a wonderful, early dinner at the Vietnamese Noodle Soup Restaurant at Times Square in Richmond Hill.  You’ve got to Love and appreciate a restaurant that has such a simple name.  You probably don’t even need a menu.  Just sit down and a fellow would bring you just that…  Vietnamese Noodle Soup.  I so thoroughly enjoyed the steak and meatballs, I had to ask the proprietor:  “exactly what is in the meatballs”.  Apparently, only asian spices, beef and beef tendon.  Mmm, mmm, good.  Deb has a spicier version for her chicken noodle bowl.  The red pepper broth reminded me of Thai tom-yum soup.  It’s nice to try different places.  In this particular neighbourhood of Richmond Hill and Markham, one could probably try a new Asian restaurant every single day of the year.  Soup, dim sum, buffets, bakeries, barbeques, steak houses, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Thai, Asian fusion…  I’m Lovin’ it all.

    ALL HER BAGS ARE PACKED – My sweetheart, the Duchess of Thornhill is leaving Stately Way, the official residence tomorrow.  She’s heading to Kingston for two weeks.  It will be longest we’ve been apart since last spring.  How will I cope?  How will I make it through?  I’ll probably gorge myself on guilt-free junk food.  That always makes me feel better.  But when she comes back and I’ve gained 20 pounds, she’s probably won’t approve.  At least I’ll have the dog to keep me company.  Those of you who know me, know how thrilled I am about that.  Some of the things I’ll miss the most: singing to her every morning, opening the car door for her, and telling her how beautiful she is everyday.  Although, I suppose I can do that by telephone.  Lots can be accomplished on the phone.

    NO TIME TO UNPACK – When she returns Deborah and I will be travelling to Montego Bay for a little romance and ‘R and R’.  Looking forward to our long weekend adventure to Jamaica.  We’ll be staying in a gorgeous private beach villa, complete with our own kitchen staff, car and driver, private pool and private beach.  We’re looking forward to travelling with our gracious hosts, Joe, Fiona and little Matteo.  Such generous and beautiful people.  Snorkeling, reading on the beach, tennis and some fun in the sun.  Oh yeah, Baby!!

    FACEBOOK – I tried to get Facebook “Places” going today, but my device doesn’t seem to want to load it.  I’m Loving all the new functionality of the service.  Today, Facebook launched the new service that can share to other users where you are, and where you’ve been.  Just in case you want other people to know you are at Winners or Cassis.  During our walk today, I was just telling Deb that I haven’t been on Facebook all that long.  For the longest time I resisted joining, instead trying to develop, program and code my own server and database.  It’s a great, geeky hobby to have, but it takes a lot of time and patience.  When I seen everybody and their grandmother had a Facebook profile and sharing notes better than I can, I was a bit miffed.  So I decided to join the Facebook revolution.  For my website and blog, I resorted to a open source app and a mainstream server.  I hope to do a redesign this winter and write a little more often.

    MUNICIPAL ELECTION – Who exactly are we going to vote for in the municipal election?  Suburban elections seem pretty dull.  There is a lot going on in the Toronto election, but it seems there is very few issues herein Thornhill-Markham.  Nobody seems to be courting our vote here.  We’ve had a couple of people come door-to-door to leave junkmail but not enough to get any information from.

    THE TOWN – okay, more than half-way through the year and I don’t have a clear favorite for the Academy Awards.  However, I may have a personal favorite.  Yesterday, Deb and I seen The Town, starring and directed by Ben Affleck.  We really enjoyed the film and a couple of time I caught myself holding my sweetheart’s hand a little too tight.  A couple of twists and turns and some pretty good characters.  It’s a pretty quiet time for movies, but I was glad we went and seen this one.  Critics seem to enjoy the film as well.  You never know what Oscar time will bring.

    And how was your week?

    My Movies Stats for 2009

    I seen 43 of the top 100 movies in 2009, at the movie theatre.

    I Love You, Man was my favorite. Probably not an Oscar pick, but I laughed my ass off harder than I ever remembered.

    My Top 10:
    1. I Love You, Man
    2. Inglorious Basterds
    3. Twilight Saga: New Moon
    4. Star Trek
    5. District 9
    6. Paranormal Activity
    7. Julie & Julia
    8. Angels and Demons
    9. Law Abiding Citizen
    10. My Sister’s Keeper

    12 were thrillers and dramas

    11 were comedies

    11 were children’s movies.  5 were animated children’s movies, 3 were live action children’s movies, 3 were tween movies

    6 were horror movies: Friday the 13th, Halloween 2, Haunting in Connecticut, Paranormal Activity, The Unborn, Saw 6.

    2 movies, Zombieland and Inglorious Basterds were off-colour, shock comedy.  They were both great.

    Movies I’ve likes so much, I seen twice:  Paranormal Activity, Star Trek, District 9

    Thoroughly enjoyed and was entertained:  Twilight Saga:  New Moon

    Edward or Jacob:  Team Edward

    Still need to see: The Lovely Bones, Avatar

    Best Horror Movie: Paranormal Activity.  The scariest movies I’ve seen in years.

    Unfunny “comedy”: Funny People

    Best Movie I didn’t see in the theatre, and should have: The Orphan

    Movie I wasn’t interested in seeing, and didn’t: Transformers 2

    The world ended once: Knowing

    The world almost ended once: 2012

    Best Actor: Matt Damon, The Informant

    Best Actress: Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia

    Oscar Contenders: Inglorious Basterds and District 9

    Movie stars I’d follow if the world was ending: John Cusack and Will Smith

    Movie star I’d want to be with if the world was ending: Raven Symone

    I had a long, $11 nap watching: Where the Wild Things Are, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, G-Force, Planet 51

    Saddest Movie: My Sister’s Keeper

    Calories from popcorn, butter and candy eaten at the movies in 2009: 34,600

    Compared to calories from beer, consumed by the average beer drinker in Canada: 30,100

    Amount of Diet Coke/Coke Zero consumed at a movie theatre in 2009: 46.8 litres

    Approximate amount spent at movie theatres, personally and for my family, in 2009: $1643