Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Yet another Lulu coupon

I missed the 25% off coupon from Christmas Day, but here's another:

Enter coupon code WINTER305 at checkout and receive 25% off your book order. The maximum savings for this coupon is $50. Offer good towards print costs only - shipping and tax amounts are excluded. You can only use the code once per account, and you can't use this coupon in combination with other coupon codes. This great offer ends on January, 5 2011 at 11:59 PM.

Friday, December 24, 2010

10 Unconventional Winter Holiday Movies (link)

If you want to watch a Christmas movie, but you are tired of the more traditional fare, Wired Magazine's GeekDad blog posted a link to ten unconventional holiday movies -- titles like Die Hard and Batman Returns. I may have to dig up my VHS copy of the MST3K version of Santa Claus Conquers the Martians.

Also, in the spirit of the holidays, take a look at a model of Serenity... in gingerbread.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

A year-end coupon code from Lulu.com

Another coupon code was sent out from Lulu this week, this time for 20% off an order. The code is REMARKABLEYEAR305 and it expires on December 31, 2010 at 11:59 PM EST. I might try to get the new issue of Fight On! or one of the Robert E. Howard publications that I haven't picked up yet.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Various opinions on net neutrality

I try to avoid writing about political issues on this blog. This should be a space to get away from that and talk about games, movies and other fun things. The idea behind what is known as "net neutrality" shouldn't be a political issue but it has become one.

For better or worse, the internet is an important part of our lives, and if you are interested in this medium (since you are reading this blog, I assume that you are) you owe it to yourself to research this issue and the ramifications.

This has been a hot story this week due to the upcoming FCC vote and the Comcast-Netflix conflict. Here are a few recent stories:

FCC Announces Net Neutrality Order for December Meeting

Comcast Busted: New Tolls for Netflix Aren't All You Should Worry About

FCC chief backs some rationing of Internet traffic

Julius Genachowski, Chairman, Federal Communications Commission: Preserving a Free and Open Internet

FCC Chairman Announces Fake Net Neutrality Proposal

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Leslie Nielsen, RIP

We were saddened to hear the news late Sunday night that actor Leslie Nielsen had passed away.

I first knew of him as a serious actor, in The Poseidon Adventure, Disney's The Swamp Fox and especially Forbidden Planet (which Mrs. Kaiju saw for the first time last night).

Then in 1980, Airplane was released... My family and I used to watch that all the time, on broadcast and cable TV. It was one of the first VHS tapes we ever purchased, along with Raiders of the Lost Ark.

It's difficult to explain exactly how much influence Airplane had on comedy in the movies, and how important it was in the forming the sense of humor of a generation. I consider it one of the top comedy films ever, right alongside Blazing Saddles, and much of that reputation is because of Mr. Nielsen's performance.

I remember watching his TV series Police Squad! when it first aired, and I recall seeing the two VHS tapes (three episodes each) in the local Camelot Music record store several years later but I never got them. When DVD arrived I hoped for an eventual release of the series on that format, which happened in 2006. If you enjoy The Naked Gun, it's worth tracking this disc down.

I liked the first Naked Gun movie, but didn't care for the other two. I must admit that I haven't seen much of Mr. Nielsen's later work past Dracula: Dead and Loving It, in movies like Spy Hard, Mr. Magoo and the Scary Movie series.

The reaction on the 'net has been interesting. Many condolences and thanks, as is usual for a celebrity who has died, but this time I've seen repeated lines from Airplane or The Naked Gun used in Facebook statuses, Tweets, and article comments. I don't see it as being disrespectful; on the contrary, I think it's a testament to the sense of humor that he had, and that many, many people share, and how much his work has meant to so many. I don't believe that he would have been offended, in fact it's probably the sort of tribute he would have loved.

This clip from Monday's NBC Nightly News is one of the best tributes in the media so far:

Frank: It's the same old story. Boy finds girl, boy loses girl, girl finds boy, boy forgets girl, boy remembers girl, girl dies in a tragic blimp accident over the Orange Bowl on New Year's Day.

Jane: Goodyear?

Frank: No, the worst.

Thanks for all the laughs, Mr. Nielsen.