Review: Midway, or Fear the Passion Project

Roland Emmerich is famous for blowing things up. He started small enough, just destroying the Whitehouse and several notable monuments He got a bit more ambitious, destroying: New York (Godzilla) Colonial America (The Patriot) New York...again (The Day After Tomorrow), along with most of the Northern Hemisphere The entire SURFACE OF THE EARTH (2012) Where do you go after you basically bring about the Apocalypse?  Do you weep, for there are no more lands left to conquer? Nah, you attempt a passion project . So, if you like blowing things up, war seems an appropriate topic.  From the invention of gunpowder forward, any convenient war will provide plenty of KA-BOOM.   And thus, we come to Midway .  The movie should really be "The first year of World War 2 in the Pacific Theatre," but that's not catchy.  It could also be called, "I saw Pearl Harbor and thought I could do better," but we'll get to that. If this were a san

Fitness and Grooming @ 41

So, my wife staged-- in love --a bit of an intervention this morning. You need to keep your hair trimmed.  You need to shave everyday.  You need to care if your clothes are wrinkled and if you have food on them.  Avoid wearing clothes that smell. In other words, it'd be better if you acted like an adult. So, first, she's absolutely right.  I've let myself go--significantly--since I've moved to Texas.  When I got here, I was 240 lbs, and swimming 1/4 mile a day in the pool.  I was comfortably in XL sized clothes, without vanity sizing. I was also 37, and I had more hair and less grey hair.  I got regular haircuts and kept my buzz between 1/8" to 1/4".  You know...tidy. Today, I'm 272 lbs, I've often gone 2 months between haircuts.  I have an explosion of grey hair and look much older than my 41 years (as of this past Saturday).  My face is sallow and jowly.  I'm wearing progressive bifocals. What can I say, I'm a middle-age, sedent

Welcome to Imperial America

As I write this, the White House is refusing to cooperate with an impeachment investigation.  Allegedly, the President used the force and weight of the United help find dirt on a prospective 2020 election opponent, Joe Biden. The calculus is thus: The House has the votes to impeach him. In the senate, 20 non-Democrats need to vote to remove him from office. There's ZERO evidence that even if 'removed' from office, Trump would actually leave.  He does, after all, command the military. The courts are impotent to actually DO anything, since they rely upon the Executive to... execute . It seems we're heading for a constitutional crisis here in America, since the founders never imagined: A truly BAD ACTOR would get elected, having gone through a campaign and the electoral college. The Legislature would have NOT THE WILL to vote to remove him upon reasonable evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors The general population would be SO APATHETIC to no

Who are you "Cancelling"? Yourself

We once were a nation that tolerated "intolerable" people, that balanced inhumanity with contrition and restoration of the contrite. All fall short. We abided Daniel Webster AND John C. Calhoun, Billy Graham and Larry Flynt, MLK and George Wallace, the Black Panthers and the KKK.   Did we particularly WANT TO?     Of course not. Why, then? Because tolerance of ideas is the price of freedom. I see that freedom ending soon. Emotion is truth. Outrage becomes mandate. Thoughts must not become a crime. At the height of the Terror, a woman came to the journalist Marat in 1793 and enumerated a list of people that were secretly against the Jacobin regime. "Soon I shall have them all guillotined in Paris," he replied confidently. Marat's pen had the power to stoke outrage that led to the scaffold. Is today's "Cancel Culture" any different?

Hackathons are Crap

Hackathon (n) 1. a design sprint -like event in which computer programmers and others involved in software development , including graphic designers , interface designers , project managers , and others, often including domain experts, collaborate intensively on software projects. The goal of a hackathon is to create usable software or hardware with the goal of creating a functioning product by the end of the event. I posit Hackathons are Crap.   They are useless distractions from Actual Work® that have none of the intended outcomes for anyone involved. The goal of most hackathons are these: Provide a break from regular work for "creatives" like programmers and graphic designers. Break the top-down product cycle and let said creatives make something that seems relevant to them. Provide useful ideas as fodder for the next strategic planning cycle. Provide useful features for customers. Let me take each in turn. It is NOT a Break This is my major beef. "H

Here We Go (Again)

There's no such thing as bad publicity -- P.T. Barnum So here we are.  As I type this, the House of Representatives seems ready to cave-in to impeachment proceedings . Allegedly, the President negotiated with a foreign power to obtain dirt on a possible opponent in the 2020 election.  To leverage that dirt, he withheld US foreign aid.  So the story goes. I really dislike our President.  Thankfully, in America, one can do that and not go to jail.  I resent how he personally took over my political party like a virus, how he made America less than it is for his own gain. Looking forward, if this impeachment goes forward it will have the following effects: He will not be removed from office.  The Senate will NEVER vote him out.  They've made that abundantly clear It feeds his narrative to his (minority) base that's "The Deep State" is against him because he won't play "their" game. It will lead to another 4 years of Donald Trump.  The center of