Jurassic World


I don’t usually do reviews of things but I’ve decided to make an exception.

Did you know that Michael Crichton died a few years back?  Yeah, I hadn’t known either until I checked his Wikipedia page two years ago, looking for some other piece of information, and was startled to see that he’d passed.  How was that not huge news?  How did I not know about that?  He’s one of my favorite writers and insanely talented (he was also a Doctor, all around talented).  I’m a huge fan of Michael Crichton’s work and an equally big fan of the first Jurassic Park movie and the books.

All that to say, I hope he’s looking down and laughing at the people who put together Jurassic World. Continue reading

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God’s Not Dead


***Disclaimer: I have absolutely no problem with any religion or ideology on its own.  My philosophy of life is pretty straight forward, do whatever you want as long as you aren’t hurting anyone else.  Gay, straight, sexual preference, ethnicity, religion, are all irrelevant to how I interact with people.  Power to everyone.  Believe whatever you want, do whatever you want, as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone.  It’s simple.

What I do have a problem with is how some religions sell themselves and how some lead to poor treatment of others, whether that be women, homosexuals, people with different religious beliefs, etc.  That violates my “do no harm” clause above.  If someone wants to be close-minded that’s their prerogative, as long as it doesn’t affect others.  As for marketing, some religions, or branches of those religions (emphasis on some, not all), use the same persuasive techniques that advertisers do to try and influence and shape public opinion.  I don’t have a problem with religions trying to increase their flock as long as it’s done honestly.  That’s not always the case.  It’s one thing to state your beliefs, or have an open and honest conversation, it’s another to use subterfuge.  That’s bullshit, and I have no problem calling anyone on their bullshit.***

Continue reading

Pet Peeve #1357


I just watched the movie Lucy. Unfortunately, as good as the action scenes might have been, the entire premise of this movie irritated the shit out of me.  Had I known beforehand I never would have picked it up.

There is a common misconception that we only use 10% of our brain.  The movie plot involves a drug that lets Lucy tap into more and more of it, giving her all sorts of wild abilities.  There’s a ticker on the bottom of the screen that keeps going up until she’s using 100%.

That is quite possibly the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Continue reading

Strange sex scene


I’m a rabid reader, I always have a couple books going.  Normally, what I’ll do is check out the free books listed on Amazon in whatever genre I’m feeling like reading.  Of course, free books are of questionable quality sometimes, but that can be half the fun.

Yesterday though, I read a strange sex scene that actually really creeped me out.  I’m not going to call out the author or book here because I’m sure the writer put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into writing it.  She’s a self-published author and I think this is her only book, so she deserves a lot of credit for putting herself out there.

The book is about America after some crazy nuclear attacks that wipe out huge portions of the states.  The survivors are running around, trying to find food and group together, and fight the crazy-violent-types that come out of the woodwork.  There are some really strange themes that run through the book, military branches, patriotic, magic, weird sexual stuff, and man vs. nature stuff too.

Anyway, this sex scene. Continue reading

Poetry Feedback – #3


I’ve had another brave writer step up to the plate and submit a poem for review.  This is going to be short and sweet… because the poem is short and sweet.  It’s a haiku, one of the most well known forms of poetry (second only to grade-school limericks, in my opinion).  It’s also one of the most difficult forms of poetry.

One of my English teachers had an interesting perspective that sticks with me to this day.  She said that the fewer the words a piece of writing has, the more important those words become.

If you’re writing a novel you have thousands and thousands of words to make the reader feel something and tell a story.  A few sloppy words or phrases here and there don’t matter too much to the piece overall.

A short story does the same as a novel but with far fewer words.  It has slightly less slack than a novel because there’s less to work with.

A poem makes a reader feel something, or paints a picture, or tells a story, but has very few words.

And a haiku… Well, I think you get where I’m going with this.  Every word has monumental importance because they make up a far larger portion of the piece.  Rather than 1 in 100,000 words (like a novel), or 1 in 10,000 (like a short story), or even 1 in a 100 (like a poem), a haiku is… What, 1 in 10?

That’s a lot of weight to put on so few words.

Now that I’ve totally psyched out the writer, on to the haiku review!  (That rhymes, I laughed.) Continue reading

Poetry Feedback – #2


This is the second poem that was submitted for feedback.  A big thank you to Mark Baron for letting me go over his villanelle.

 

I kissed her on her alabaster skin,
Where sun-sent bronze had never staked its claim,
And marveled at the joys I found therein.

She did as well, as evidenced in grin.
And as a blush spread quick throughout her frame,
I kissed her on her alabaster skin.

Her form, less hourglass, more violin,
I stroked, love’s melodies seeking to tame,
And marveled at the joys I found therein.

Though ne’er a great composer have I been,
When played on her, a symphony became;
I kissed her on her alabaster skin.

With every cobbled note I did begin,
An aria of lust from out her came,
I marveled at the joys I found therein.

And then the great crescendo of our sin,
She shuddered, and as dully grew her flame,
I kissed her on her alabaster skin,
And marveled at the joys I found therein.

– Mark Baron Continue reading

Poetry Feedback – # 1


Alright, when I put out a call to poets I got two fast responses.  So, first off, a big thank you to the two open minded poets.  This will be the first review, the second will soon follow.

Before I get to the review, I wanted to reply to part of the comment that Shawn L Bird left on the “Poets” post when she submitted her poem.

“Practising is the only way to get there. Reading other poets and writing poetry is the only way to improve. Modelling what you see and stretching for your unique view requires writing, writing, writing.”

I have to respectfully disagree with this statement.  Yes, getting the words out is extremely important, the more a person writes the better.  Absolutely.  However, writing in a vacuum does not improve one’s ability at all.  That’s like writing a paper for an English teacher and never getting graded (Yes Shawn, I read your profile.  No, I’m not a stalker).  The only way to truly improve is to be questioned, to be challenged.  Without getting honest feedback, a writer will reach a certain point and become static.  The only way to grow and progress is to be constantly questioned, to be dragged through the mud, to stumble and fall and get back up.  How can anyone raise the bar if there is no bar?

That’s why I have a problem with so many of the poetry sites I see on WordPress.  There’s a whole lot of mutual masturbation going on, stroking each other’s egos, and not a lot of constructive feedback.

Ok, that rant out of the way, on the to review! Continue reading