2010-04-19

Loren's choir concert



Granite Falls School District & the Everett Chorale
present
"Why We Sing"
First Annual All-City Choir Concert

Granite Falls High School
Granite Falls, WA
April 15, 2010

1 - Ah, Robyn
2 - Children of Peace
3 - Vocalise

Diana Lawrence, Director
Patti McElroy, piano
Emilie Barker, flute

GFHS Choraliers:
Loren Pelkey, Parker Aamold, Alexis Bailey, Emilie Barker, Sierra Barker, Rochelle
Baron, Kimberly Bray, Allie Chadwick, Nik Cole, Ashlee Cortez, Alexis Irvin,
Semira Kern, Nathan Lynn, Maxx Marker, Desi Nease, Shannon Ozog, Mercedes
Pryor, Allyssa Puett, Brenda Ramirez, Amanda Ray, Emily Richbourg, Kelsey
Salsgiver, Lupe Sanchez-Reynoso, Catie Schusted, Mikyla Sears, Shantae Smith-
Roberts, Brad Somes, Kevin Sprague, Maria Stadler, Heidi Thayer, Caroline Todd,
Alysa Turner, Sarah Turner, Kelsey Wesson, Madelyn Winter

2010-04-13

pretty cool dream

Christina Applegate and i were working together to preserve the integrity of the timeline, so the “correct” future would come to pass. we were new friends, thrown together by circumstance, who’d grown close quickly. Christina seemed to be part of a large quasi-military organization, which appeared only tangentally, but our mutual goal was personal, outside of that context. the future we were trying to preserve seemed to be represented by a very complex piece of music; everything hinged on its survival. we both had an understanding of the piece, but Christina’s was comprehensive, and it existed in its entirety only in her mind.

working counter to our purposes was Aaron Eckhart (the actor who played Harvey Dent/Two Face in “The Dark Night”). he was infatuated with Christina. his complete obsession with her (which included jealousy of our relationship) led him to oppose the “correct” future, in which she belonged to someone else. he confronted us while we were deciding what to do next, and threatened to use a device which could “negate” possible futures by permanently “erasing” elements of the present. the elements to be erased by this unseen device seemed to be controlled by his thoughts, so its effects were therefore limited by his knowledge. it was unspoken but conveyed that he would even erase Christina if necessary- if he couldn’t have her, he’d make sure no one else would either. this gave her/us an advantage, as erasing her was a last resort, and she held the key to our success. our desire to preserve the timeline was independent of any ramifications for either of us personally.

realizing that the entire future depended on this piece of music, which would cease to exist if she were erased, Christina and i used a device to transcribe it, directly from her mind. suddenly i was looking over her shoulder at the sheet music in her hands. below the title “Tapis Rouge” was a dauntingly complex score, continued on multiple pages. we both stood still and stared at it for a moment, absorbing what this accomplishment meant: a physical copy of the music, unknown to the Eckhart, that would survive to preserve the timeline, even if he activated his device. as it sunk in, Christina was overjoyed, and threw her arms around me to hug me. i’d felt a great deal of relief, but that was quickly overshadowed by happiness for her as i was caught up in her enthusiasm.

Christina left the music with me, and rushed off to return to her official duties. i became aware that her romantic interest- the man Echkart was truly jealous of- was her professional peer. he was somewhat awkward, unsure of himself, and he wore thick glasses. i watched as they approached each other in a hallway, while various others dressed in like, grey uniforms went about their business. Christina exchanged a few words with him surreptitiously, seeming not to want to draw the others’ attention. this seemed to reinforce his impression that he had no chance for a relationship with her. they parted company in opposite directions. Christina couldn’t follow through with it, and she called out to him, and they rushed back to each other and embraced. she caught my eye over his shoulder and smiled at me, then (very strangely!) seemed to notice something about one of her fingernails, and started inspecting it, still hugging him. i was close enough to see it was bright white and shaped very oddly, like a spade from a deck of cards, but flat across the top instead of coming to a point. (this seemed as strange to me in the dream as it does now writing this.)

Christina and her man finally parted company for real, and she returned to her duties, entering a huge room that resembled a barn, to my right. the place had weathered, exposed beams everywhere, a high, peaked roof, and straw on the floor. there were bales of hay around, and rough wooden crates. it was crawling with people, working individually or in small groups, with different kinds of equipment that all looked very technical...i didn’t understand anything about what they were doing.

at the far end of this room was Echkart. he approached and confronted her angrily, and she walked away from him. i had a feeling something bad was about to happen and i started to cross the room toward him. Christina passed me, on her way out. Eckhart said something bitter and final and activated his erasing device- literally plugging in the power cord. i turned on my heel toward Christina and saw a wave of vanishing; i could mark its progress by disappearing people and equipment, from the far end of the room toward me. Christina saw it too, and started to turn to face me, but didn’t complete the move before she was erased. the wave passed over me without affecting me, and i turned to follow its progress. it ended with Eckart, who was himself erased. i was alone in this huge and now basically empty room. stunned, i turned back toward the door and saw a piece of tubing and a few other components, the surviving remnants of the transciption device we’d used, lying on a crate. i crossed the room toward it and there, at the base, was the hard copy of “Tapis Rouge”.

2010-04-03

Cage The Elephant - In One Ear

can't remember who turned me on to this originally, but i ran across it again- this is a good song and i love the lyrics (below the video).  pass it on-

PEACE


Cage The Elephant
MP3 download @ amazon.com
Cage The Elephant
In One Ear

they say that we ain't got the style
we ain't got the class
we ain't got the tunes
that's gonna put us on the map
and i'm a phony in disguise
tryin' to make the radio
i'm an anti-social anarchist
i sound like so and so

they say i'm just a stupid kid
another crazy radical
rock and roll is dead
i prob'ly should've stayed in school
another generation X
who somehow slipped up through the cracks
oh, they'd love to see me fall
but i'm already on my back

so it goes in one ear and right out the other
people talkin' shit but you know i never bother
it goes in one ear and right out the other
people talkin' shit
they can kiss the back of my hand

now i know i'm not a saint
i been a sinner all my life
i ain't tryin' to hide my flaws
i'd rather keep them in the light
they wanna criticize, scrutinize,
cast another stone
burn me at the stake
and sit and watch it from their throne

they say the devil is my pal,
i do a lotta drugs
the crowd will only like me
if they're really fuckin' drunk
they think they know my thoughts
but they don't know the least
if they'd listen to the words
they'd find the message tucked beneath

but it goes in one ear and right out the other
people talkin' shit even though they never bother
it goes in one ear and right out the other
people talkin' shit
they can kiss the back of my hand

you hear that?
you hear what's coming'?
oh, you better run for the hills
'cause we're comin' to your town
and we're gonna burn that mother fucker down

here's the moral to the story
we don't do it for the glory
we don't do it for the money
we don't do it for the fame
so all the critics who despise us
go ahead and criticize us
it's your tyranny that drives us
adds the fire to our flames

and it goes in one ear and right out the other
people talkin' shit but you know we'll never bother
it goes in one ear and right out the other
i'm only playing music 'cause you know i fuckin' love it
it goes in one ear and right out the other
people talkin' shit but you know we'll never bother
it goes in one ear, and right out the other
people talkin' shit
they can kiss the back of my hand

2010-04-02

RealD 3D and Dreamworks's animated Megamind

this is only a teaser trailer (haven't found a longer one yet), but i like the idea: make a "good" bad guy in an animated comedy.   the main character of this reminds me a little of the type of over-the-top, megalomaniacal villain in Monsters vs. Aliens, but it's hard to tell anything much from a teaser.

i'm actually looking forward to seeing a 3D animated movie.   i wasn't very impressed with Avatar as a movie, but it really was over the top visually, and the RealD 3D technology is amazingly good.   it projects polarized light off a specially reflective screen to each eye alternately, through the use of glasses with differenly polarized lenses, a total of 144 times per second.   i've read that (rarely) some people get headaches from watching these kinds of films, but i've also read that paying attention to the in-focus part of the picture- usually the point anyway- makes that even more rare.   i didn't have any problems watching Avatar, and i made a conscious effort to disobey that warning, specifically to see if it caused any.

incidentally, what's up with having people recycle those glasses? how inefficient is that?! how about saving them until the next time and bringing them with you? when they're 'recycled', are they disinfected and repackaged, or do they melt them down and keep making new ones? the only reason i can see for recycling those glasses is to make a little more money every time you buy a RealD 3D movie ticket.   i'd rather save my $1/ticket charge (or whatever it is) and keep the glasses.   (actually, i did keep mine, and i'll use them again next time whether i have to "buy" a new pair or not...i'm kinda neurotic about wasting perfectly good things.)

for better or worse, the 3D tech seems to be the latest "killer app" for the theaters, a real draw when many would prefer to spend less money streaming on-demand films through their HDTVs.   having a pretty decent TV myself, i see the attraction.   the TVs are getting better and cheaper all the time, and the content is much cheaper in the long run, especially if you'd be buying multiple movie tickets for a lot of films.   movie theaters are notoriously expensive! you can make the argument that it's the concessions that double the cost, but what's a movie without popcorn? that's part of the experience, in my book.   besides, it's what keeps them in business.   and there are always going to be films you MUST see on the big screen.

i doubt this movie's one of them, but some animated 3D film or another will eventually see me shelling out $50 for the privilege of sitting in a dark room with my son, in funny glasses, eating overpriced popcorn.

M. Night Shyamalan does The Last Airbender

having a son is a perfect excuse to sit around watching cartoons...at least until they get old enough to think that's not so cool anymore.   (then you have to find a new excuse to commune with your inner geek.)   anyway, my son was the right age when the original cartoon version of this was new, and it was a good show.   Shyamalan's done a lot of films- some of them really excellent, like The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, and Signs- but i really didn't know what to make of it when i heard he was doing this.   looks like he nailed it.   if the performances live up to the look and the scope of this project, he'll rightfully have one of the biggest hits of the year on his hands in July.   i'm really looking forward to this one- hope it's not a disappointment, and i don't think it will be.

by all means, watch the animated series first!


Ridley Scott's Robin Hood redux

i've had a thing for medieval period films as long as i can remember, mostly because i was completely obsessed with King Arthur when i was a kid.   and i've also had a thing for summer blockbusters, ever since i saw Star Wars at the drive-in in fourth grade...or was it fifth?...i think it was fifth.   anyway, if it's sci-fi or fantasy epicness, count me in.   Ridley Scott's done some great stuff, including two of my favorite movies of all time, Blade Runner and Aliens.   Russell Crowe was one of those guys that didn't do much for me at first, but i thought he was pretty excellent in Gladiator and even better in Cinderella Man, so i'm looking forward to seeing him play another of my favorite classic characters here.

but i'm really looking forward to seeing Cate Blanchett in this; you can pretty much count on an excellent performance from her.   if you haven't seen them, check out The Gift, which also has a really great performance by Giovanni Rabisi, and Veronica Guerin.   and definitely check out Elizabeth, if you haven't.

recycling The Sorceror's Apprentice

this is Disney's live-action spin on their old Fantasia segment.   is nothing sacred?!   well, Mickey fans can rest easy; this has nothing to do with the beloved Mickey-battles-the-flood short, and everything to do with capitalizing on the famous name.   think National Treasure meets Harry Potter.   Alfred Molina is likely to be a great big PLUS for this film, as he's usually pretty fantastic, and he gets to play a villain here.

this film's premise is similar to The Vampire's Assistant (trailer & clips here), the first film adaptation of Darren Shan's Vampire Blood trilogy (the first of 4 trilogies in his fictionally biographical Saga of Darren Shan arc).   Assistant had some great story elements, a lot of humor, and occasionally stellar special effects work; it was entertaining, but short of outstanding.   not having read the books, i can't comment on them personally, but i gather J.K. Rowling liked them.

Apprentice looks like it had a lot higher budget- your typical Disney summer blockbuster / family-oriented action-adventure film.   i was skeptical but, judging by the trailer, this could be fun.


Kick-Ass hits the theaters in a couple weeks- looks pretty good

i think Chloe Moretz is about to be a household name, even though most people are going to think twice about letting their kids watch her in this movie, which comes off as a bloodier, darker sort of "Superbad-meets-Mystery Men", but is really an adaptation of Mark Millar's graphic novel.


official trailer #4 (yes, there are 3 more, and no, i'm not posting them all)




unrated trailer #2 (Hit-Girl is awesome.)




unrated trailer #1


from the youtube page:
Release date: 16 April 2010
Cast: Mark Strong, Nicolas Cage, Aaron Johnson, Chloe Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse


A twisted, funny, high—octane adventure, director Matthew Vaughn brings KICK—ASS to the big screen. KICK—ASS tells the story of average teenager Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson), a comic—book fanboy who decides to take his obsession as inspiration to become a real—life superhero. As any good superhero would, he chooses a new name — Kick—Ass — assembles a suit and mask to wear, and gets to work fighting crime. Theres only one problem standing in his way: Kick—Ass has absolutely no superpowers. His life is forever changed as he inspires a subculture of copy cats, meets up with a pair of crazed vigilantes — including an 11—year—old sword—wielding dynamo, Hit Girl (ChloĆ« Moretz) and her father, Big Daddy (Nicolas Cage) — and forges a friendship with another fledgling superhero, Red Mist (Christopher Mintz—Plasse). But thanks to the scheming of a local mob boss Frank DAmico (Mark Strong), that new alliance will be put to the test.

2010-04-01

over Obama's shoulder as he edits a healthcare speech, Sep 9, 2009


Obama editing healthcare speech, Sep 9, 2009


P090909PS-0026, originally uploaded by The White House.


this is a really rare opportunity to see how a presidential speech is written and rewritten and rerewritten for maximum effect.   clicking through to the Flickr page and viewing the "original" size picture (click "all sizes" above the picture then "original") allows you to clearly see the edits.

one of the most interesting points is the complete removal of a section concerning Obama's personal experiences with his daughter's and mother's illnesses.   some things must inevitably be cut, and evidently that section didn't advance the main thrust of the speech, so they were removed.   i'm sure Obama was loathe to cut them.

i was turned on to this after stumbling across Michael Leddy's blog Orange Crate Art, which is also pretty interesting stuff.

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