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Back on line

Wednesday, October 7, 2009 ...it has been a while... It's been a while. Is that one word or two? I say, two because I'm using it as a noun and not as an adjective or adverb...I'll check. When “awhile” is spelled as a single word, it is an adverb meaning “for a time” (“stay awhile”); but when “while” is the object of a prepositional phrase, like “Lend me your monkey wrench for a while” the “while” must be separated from the “a.” (But if the preposition “for” were lacking in this sentence, “awhile” could be used in this way: “Lend me your monkey wrench awhile.”) I'm going with two words. It seems right to me.Anyway, it's been a few months. Summer and the holidays are definitely over and while I might have been here just after Labour Day, I ran into some computer problems. That's for another time.And there's lots to write about and that's for another time as well.Posted 2009/10/07 at 09h28ET in JamesPiper.com.

Movies Watched in June 2009

Movies Watched in June 20091. 2009/06/01 Once Upon a Time in Mexico. Action. (2003, 102 mins.) NR
2. 2009/06/01 Edison. Crime. (2005, 97 mins.) NR
3. 2009/06/02 Disturbia. Thriller. (2007, 105 mins.) NR
4. 2009/06/02 Johnny Dangerously. Comedy. (1984, 90 mins.) NR
5. 2009/06/03 A Love Song for Bobby Long. Drama. (2004, 119 mins.) NR
6. 2009/06/03 The Natural. Drama. (1984, 134 mins.) NR
7. 2009/06/04 Zulu. War. (1964, 138 mins.) NR
8. 2009/06/04 Death of a President. Drama. (2006, 97 mins.) NR
9. 2009/06/05 Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Romantic Comedy. (2008, 111 mins.) NR
10. 2009/06/05 The Secret Life of Words. Drama. (2005, 115 mins.) NR
11. 2009/06/05 Deja Vu. Thriller. (2006, 126 mins.) NR
12. 2009/06/06 Paranoid Park. Drama. (2007, 85 mins.) NR
13. 2009/06/06 Don't Say a Word. Thriller. (2001, 113 mins.) NR
14. 2009/06/06 National Treasure. Action. (2004, 131 mins.) NR
15. 2009/06/06 Duct Tape Forever. Comedy. (2002, 90 mins.) NR
16. 2009/06/07 The Jane Austen Book Club. Roman…

Weights only.

Monday, June 29, 2009 ...reached a new level... In the last three plus years, I've been disciplined and organized about my exercise, about trips to the gym. I've seen results in weight loss, toner muscles, endurance etc. Today I discovered another result: a lower at rest heart rate--in the low sixties. I was surprised and proud. In the past it was in the seventies to low eighties.To me that's a sign of fitness, but I should also test my recovery time. I would like to know what it is these days. I suspect it's a low number as well.Because I've seen such results and can't improve on them, I realized today I don't need to push as hard as I've been doing. There's going to be days of rest each week and instead of 9 rotations, I only did 6 today. Six is plenty.As usual I'll have to rework my routine to fit in a five day a week routine instead of six or seven days.Posted 2009/06/29 at 19h37ET in Exercise.

Cardio only (6.0207)

Thursday, June 18, 2009 ...cardio only for a change... A month ago today's workout would have been typical. Come to the gym and do 30 minutes on the elliptical machine. I changed it by adding in stretching and stomach crunches then bicep curls then chest presses. After 25 straight days of exercising my body said take it easier (my mind as well). As a result, it was cardio only. Tomorrow I expect to take the day off. Probably. Either that or Sunday. We shall see.Posted 2009/06/18 at 20h51ET in Exercise.

Weights only. (6.0199)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009 ...rushed for time... I had a board meeting in the late afternoon and it seemed as if I wouldn't get to the gym at all; however, I realized I could squeeze in some weights or cardio and I decided on weights. I thought I could do 9 sets, but I had to stop after 6 even with the rushing. It was still a workout.Today was 24 days in a row. Not bad, but I think I'm going to take Friday off. I'm at 89.5KG on consecutive days and it would be good to rest my body. I've averaged 6.3 days a week in 2009. My long-term average is 6.02. I can afford to take a few days off and still be above six.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 6 sets with 3KG medicine ball (Right/Left/Centre). Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 9kg x 20 reps x 6 sets.Chest Press on Swiss Ball: 9kg x 30 reps x 6 sets.No Leg Lunges.No SquatsLots of stretching.Posted 2009/06/17 at 18h45ET in Exercise.

Cardio and weights (6.0191)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009 ...a cardio day with weights... I've said it before but my exercise routine changes and evolves as I learn new things, discover news things or simply get too used to a particular weight amount. Today it was about consciously doing stomach crunches in three different motions instead of simply back and forth through the middle. The first set is to the right to work the obliques. The second set is to the middle to work the abdominals. The third set is to the left to work the obliques. When I say "work" I mean a more concentration of effort on those muscles. All those muscles are working during a stomach, just some more than others. We'll see how that goes.I'm finding it too easy to do stomach crunches and I'm wondering what is next. I keep doing more reps but there comes a point where you can't do anymore reps. We shall see.In talking with someone at the gym today I was told I was to eat protein with every meal. I don't do…

Weights (6.0183)

Monday, June 15, 2009 ...Never stop learning and adjusting my workout... I've been doing so many stomach crunches with a 3KG medicine ball (9 sets with 40 reps) day after day that it has become too easy. I think I have to do 50 reps or as many as needed to "feel the burn." I also realized I was concentrating on my abdominals and ignored my obliques. The former run down the middle, the later on each side. You have to do a different motion to get a full workout of the obliques. I've adjusted.Today was a full weights day (i.e., heavier weights). For time reasons, to save time, I didn't do any leg lunges or leg squats. I'm not sure how many times I should do these exercises each week. Once or twice, max three times a week.Bench Press: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 14kg x 20 reps x 3 sets.Tricep Presses on Swiss Ball: 18kg x 20 reps x 3 sets.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. 3 sets centre, 3 sets to righ…

Cardio and weights (6.0150)

Thursday, June 11, 2009 ...eighteen days in a row... My exercise routine continues to change based on new information. For example on Monday, after seven days in a row of leg lunges and leg squats, I woke up to an aching pain in the top of my knees. Nothing painful, just enough to let me know they were there. A few bends of my leg and the ache was gone. I think I know what is happening and it's nothing too serious. Age is creeping up and knees tend to take a punishment over the years. There is nothing wrong with my form, it's simply too much use. As a result I decided to stop doing leg lunges and squats. That was Monday and Tuesday. I should have got back to it yesterday since it was a none cardio day but only realized it afterwards. Today was a cardio day, 30 minutes on the elliptical machine so it didn't make any sense to me to do any today. Tomorrow I will. In the future I won't do 630 reps of leg squats during one week, especially not every single day. …

Cardio and weights (6.0092)

Thursday, June 4, 2009 ...solid workout and the results are coming... In the last couple of weeks I have increased the intensity and length of my workouts. I'm pushing myself to get trimming, leaner and toned. I'm seeing results. I hit a new low with my weight 90.5 KG. That was no fluke. The fat is disappearing. The tire around my waist is less noticeable. I have visions of it disappearing. It's possible given what I've been doing and the results I've seen.Today was a long, solid workout. 30 minutes of cardio followed by weights. I thought about only doing 6 sets instead of 9 but did 9. I want to keep my promise on doing it everyday this week. It's part of my plan to see results.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 9kg x 20 reps x 9 sets.Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 9 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 9 sets.Posted 2009/06/04 at 21h01ET in Exercise.

The Natural (1984)

Thursday, June 4, 2009 The Natural. Feature film. (1984, 134 mins) IMDB...a little too Hollywood and sweet for my liking... A young boy growing up on a farm shows he has a strong throwing arm and can hit the ball. He's a natural baseball talent. As a young man he gets a tryout with Chicago Cubs and begins the journey to the big leagues. Before he leaves, he makes love to his sweetheart. On the train trip he meets a newspaper sports reporter and Babe Ruth. During a pit stop, a challenge is set. Strike out Ruth with three pitches. He does. The legend has begun except there's a major bump in the road. He meets a sexy woman on the train. At a hotel later, he goes to her room where she shots him with a handgun. What the!?! Flashforward sixteen years. Our hero gets a tryout with a struggling NY major league team. He's 36 years old and has virtually no baseball experience. That's an odd story. It just doesn't happen. The manager and team don't want hi…

A Love Song for Bobby Long (2004)

Thursday, June 4, 2009 The Love Song of Bobby Long. Feature film. (2004, 120 mins) IMDB...interesting characters in an unusual setting... Pursy lives in a trailer park with a deadbeat guy in Panama City, Florida. She sits on a couch watching TV, and, with a spoon covered in peanut butter, dips it into a bag of M&Ms. The place is a mess. He tells her she received a phone call a few days ago from Bobby Long. Bad news. Her mother died. Furious, she packs up and makes a trip to New Orleans where her mother lived in a beat-up old home she owned. The front lawn is dirt. The paint long pealed away to expose boards. Not much in the way of furniture. Old appliances. It's a mess as well. When Pursy arrives she finds out her mother was buried the day before. Dead a the age of forty. We never meet or see her mother. We don't know what she died from. We learn she sang, but obviously not that well given her living conditions. She never married, but obviously had affair…

Weights (6.0084)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009 ...weights day--tweaking it... I keep tweaking my weights routine. I was on a 6 rotation workout with two types of bench presses every other rotation. Now it's 9 rotations with the two bench presses and a tricep press.The other tweak has been to increase the resistance, increase the weight load. I was too used to the weights I had been doing.Bench Press: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 14kg x 20 reps x 3 sets.Tricep Presses on Swiss Ball: 18kg x 20 reps x 3 sets. (Changed weight/reps).Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 9kg x 20 reps x 9 sets.Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 9 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 9 sets.That is one solid workout.Posted 2009/06/03 at 20h05ET in Exercise.

Disturbia (2007)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009 Disturbia. Feature film. (2007, 105 mins) IMDB...it could have been far worse... It's not officially a remake but it is. This is modern take on REAR WINDOW. Instead of a photographer (Jimmy Steward) locked up in his apartment in NYC because of a broken leg, this film has a teenaged boy under house arrest with an ankle alarm. If he leaves the property, an alarm goes off and the police come right away and they do. In the opening sequence he drives the family car on a highway. His father is in the passenger seat. Out of nowhere, the car collides with another and another. The father is dead. The son is quilt ridden. The three months of house arrest (punishment for something that happened a year later) coincides with the summer months away from school. But his mother cuts the cable, internet, video games. With nothing to do, he becomes a voyeur and there's plenty of things to watch from his bedroom. Note: the family lives in a one-off spacious hom…

Cardio and weights (6.0076)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009 ...cardio and weights--longer workout than I expected... I was only going to do cardio followed by stomach crunches and bicep curls and even then only 6 sets. That turned into 9 sets and I did leg lunges and leg squats. I'm going to try it all week and see if I notice any difference.30 minutes on the elliptical machine. A solid workout on it.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 9kg x 20 reps x 9 sets.Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 9 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 9 sets.Posted 2009/06/02 at 20h50ET in Exercise.

Once Upon a Time in Mexico (2003)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009 Once Upon a Time in Mexico. Feature film. (2003, 102 mins) IMDB...do you like lots of gunfire?... The guitar player is back at it. This time there's no mistaken identity. He's wanted by the CIA to help with a coup or to stop a coup. It's never very clear to me, but it doesn't matter. The plot is oh so involved with many players. There's the president and his back-stabbing advisor. There's the CIA. The FBI. The drug cartel and fractions within it. There's also the Mexican army and a certain General. And of course there's El Mariachi and his men. The plot doesn't matter. It's an excuse to put action sequences on screen. In this case it's scenes where our hero is attacked and out numbered and he has to shot his way out of every situation. Bullets fly like rice on a wedding day. It's guns and guns and more guns. The most interesting aspect of this film? The making of it. Many of the things done on scree…

Edison (2005)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009 Edison Force. Feature film. (2005, 97 mins) IMDB...banal, trite, nothing new here, move along... It's not surprising this film was released straight to DVD. While there are top notch performers involved in making this film, the story is weak. It's weak because it's been done before and before. It's been in films and novels; it's been on TV dramas and TV news documentaries and of courses it's filed the news. What am I talking about? Police corruption. There's a wet-behind-the-ears "journalist" (Timberlake) who stumbles on possible police corruption when he covers a court case. He's eager to win prizes and fame and goes after it, but he has no idea what he is doing. His boss (Freeman), a veteran journalist, tells him so. We know what has happened because we saw what happened and saw the faked court evidence. The task for the journalist is get evidence to support his hypothesis. The cops beat him up and beat his gir…

Weights (6.0067)

Monday, June 1, 2009 ...weights day and longer than I expected... I planned to do weights today and I did.I also wanted to increase the weights on some exercises that were getting too easy. Increase the weight and reduce the reps. I'm hoping this will result in a better workout--better results. We shall see.Bench Press: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 14kg x 20 reps x 3 sets (Changed weights/reps).Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 9kg x 20 reps x 9 sets (Changed weights/reps).Tricep Presses on Swiss Ball: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 sets.Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 9 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 9 sets.Posted 2009/06/01 at 21h11ET in Exercise.

Nothing Sacred (1937)

Monday, June 1, 2009 Nothing Sacred. Feature film. (1937, 77 mins) IMDB...Carole Lombard was tops in my books... Carole Lombard would be near the top of my list of favourite actresses. Charming. Enchanting. Endearing. Funny. What is probably not known about her is the fact she could act. She wasn't limited to comedy. She had range, but wasn't able to use it. Sadly she died too young. What did we miss out on? A great deal I would say. NOTHING SACRED is a romantic comedy with an emphasis on comedy. Physical comedy. Pratfalls and fist fights and slapstick. It was fun to watch because we don't see a film loaded with it as in this film. Any of today's film that try to do it fail because they take it too far or maybe the actors can't pull it off. It looks easy, but like dancing on ice skates, it's far from easy. Lombard is a young woman living in a small Vermont town. Word reaches NYC she is dying from barium or radium poisoning. A desperate reporte…

In the Bedroom (2001)

Monday, June 1, 2009 In The Bedroom. Feature film. (2001, 130 mins) IMDB...two stories written independently but similar--spooky... There are many similarities between this story and my novel MY DEARBORN. It's scary. I wrote my novel without any knowledge of this film or story and likewise with the people involved in this film. Parallel development. It's spooky, yet, given the nature of storytelling, there are only so many characters and ideas and it's difficult to be truly original. The story takes place in a sleepy village on the east coast of Maine. People aren't in a hurry. There's time to take a boat out on the water, pull up lobster cages and harvest the catch. You'd expect that from fisherman, but a local family doctor does it with his son. It's a different sort of place. The doctor's son is looking at what universities to go to or even if he should go to school. He saw his father get educated and feels it didn't do him any good, bu…

Weights (6.0059)

Sunday, May 31, 2009 ...a modified workout... Since Monday is a weights day, I couldn't do weights today and I didn't feel like going swimming or twirling away on some cardio machine, but I wanted to do something and decided on a minimum of stomach crunches and bicep curls. When I got home I realized I had done these same two exercises everyday this week. That's a first.Is it making a difference? I think so but it's hard to tell. I just keep at it knowing there is improvement even it's not immediately noticeable.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 9 sets Posted 2009/05/31 at 20h58ET in Exercise.

Movies Watched in May 2009

Movies Watched in May 20091. 2009/05/01 New York City Serenade. Drama. (2007, 103 mins.) NR
2. 2009/05/01 Religulous. Documentary. (2008, 101 mins.) NR
3. 2009/05/01 No Reservations. Romantic Comedy. (2007, 104 mins.) NR
4. 2009/05/02 Semi-Pro. Comedy. (2008, 91 mins.) NR
5. 2009/05/02 The Prince and the Pauper. Drama. (1937, 118 mins.) NR
6. 2009/05/03 Spanglish. Comedy. (2004, 131 mins.) NR
7. 2009/05/03 The Gift. Crime. (2000, 112 mins.) NR
8. 2009/05/03 Song of the Thin Man. Comedy. (1947, 86 mins.) NR
9. 2009/05/04 In Bruges. Crime. (2008, 107 mins.) NR
10. 2009/05/04 8½. Drama. (1963, 138 mins.) NR
11. 2009/05/05 New York City Serenade. Drama. (2007, 103 mins.) NR
12. 2009/05/05 Vital Signs. Drama. (1990, 103 mins.) NR
13. 2009/05/05 Man About Town. Drama. (2006, 96 mins.) NR
14. 2009/05/05 Religulous. Documentary. (2008, 101 mins.) NR
15. 2009/05/06 You Kill Me. Comedy. (2007, 93 mins.) NR
16. 2009/05/06 Dead Fish. Comedy. (2004, 98 mins.) NR
17. 2009/05/06 Sahara (2005). Actio…

Cario and weights (6.0050)

Saturday, May 30, 2009 ...cardio and some weights... This is the sort of workout I like. A solid 30 minutes on the elliptical machine followed by some weights and stretching. Lots of sweat and no difficulty doing it.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 9 sets Posted 2009/05/30 at 20h58ET in Exercise.

The Treatment (2006)

Saturday, May 30, 2009 The Treatment. Feature film. (2006, 86 mins) IMDB...a realistic look at romance... For some reason I liked this movie. I liked the actors and I wanted them to get together even though there doesn't appear to be all that many original elements to it. She's a widow, a wealthy widow, living in Manhattan with two young children. One is a young boy going to a private school where our hero works as an English teacher. He's screwed up because his mother died when he was young, his father is distant and his true love left him for someone else and is getting married. The story focuses on how the screwed up English teacher gets together with the widow even though everyone around them says no. It wouldn't be a good move. Ian Holm plays a belligerent shrink for our hero. There are the requisite shrink sessions where our hero is sprawled out on a couch, but here's the twist. Like a ghost, the shrink also appears from closets and the corner of a roo…

Weights (6.0042)

Friday, May 29, 2009 ...a full weights workout... Since it was Friday, a part of me wanted to leave early, but I realized there was no point. I might as well put in a long workout and did.I also decided to increase the number of reps I do for stomach crunches. It was becoming too easy. Same for the bench press.Bench Press: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 3 setsStomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 40 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 9 sets No Tricep Presses.Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 9 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 9 sets.Posted 2009/05/29 at 19h59ET in Exercise.

Jumper (2008)

Friday, May 29, 2009 Jumper. Feature film. (2008, 88 mins) IMDB...oh for the chance at a new screenplay... A teenaged boy discovers he can jump through space, dematerialize from say New York City and in a flash rematerialize in Egypt next to the Giza pyramids. It's a neat trick and a neat premise, but it doesn't make for much of a story. It's not a story because where's the trouble in being able to jump around the world? There is none. Life is good for our hero. To create a story, Paladins are created. There's regular humans, Jumpers and Paladins. The later two have been fighting a private war for centuries. Paladins are out to track down and kill the Jumpers. Not much is ever explained and therefore the resulting action has little meaning. That's the point of the movie--create action sequence after action sequence. It's effective and good looking, lots of CGI that isn't obvious, but since there's little underlying story, the action become…

Cardio (6.0034)

Thursday, May 28, 2009 ...cardio and some weights... It feels great to be able to do a full 30 minutes of cardio and that's what I did today. I followed it up with bicep curls and stomach crunches and stretching.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 9 sets Posted 2009/05/28 at 19h06ET in Exercise.

Good Luck Chuck (2007)

Thursday, May 28, 2009 Good Luck Chuck. Feature film. (2007, 96 mins) IMDB...what a sad, pathetic movie... The film is billed as a romantic comedy. There is nothing romantic or comic about it. It is crude, rude, boorish, lame, stupid, idiotic, pathetic, hideous, gross and a handful of other negative words I can throw into the list. How anyone can think this film was a good idea, that it should be made and people would like it, is beyond me. It's a terrible film. The premise has some interest but it the execution of it is sucked dry with boorish attempts at humour. It's shallow. We don't like the characters and in fact I'd rather see them tortured then gain any sort of romantic resolution. This is particularly true for the hero's sidekick--a fellow medical practitioner who will say anything provided it's crude. I'm sure people like him exist. If you meet them you want to run the other way and putting them in a film, aiming to be a romantic comedy, i…

Bolt (2008)

Thursday, May 28, 2009 Bolt. Feature film. (2008, 96 mins) IMDB...a fun animation film... Bolt, a puppy, sits in a cage in a pet store when Penny, a young girl, picks him out of the batch. She adores her new puppy. Her father, a scientist, applies his knowledge to the dog to create a superdog whose job is to protect Penny from the evil Green-Eyed man and his henchmen. It's a story within a story where Penny and Bolt and the rest are actors for an action TV series except for one thing. Bolt doesn't know he's a character on a TV show. To stay in character, the production is designed so he doesn't know what is truly happening. He thinks he has a superbark. He thinks he has laser visions and can cut metal with it. He thinks he can ram a speeding car and stop it dead. He believes it because the production team makes him believe it. That's the setup and it was a fun setup because it's filled with animated action as if Ridley Scott was helming Black Hawk Dow…

Weights (6.0025)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009 ...a full weights day... I love the fact I can do a full weights workout and not be bothered and troubled with breathing problems. The allergy symptoms are pretty much gone.Lateral Back 27 kg x 25 reps x 3 setsVertical Back 27 kg x 25 reps x 3 setsStomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 9 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 9 sets Tricep Presses on bench: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 sets.Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 6 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 6 sets.Posted 2009/05/27 at 20h54ET in Exercise.

Mamma Mia! (2008)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009 Mamma Mia!. Feature film. (2008, 108 mins) IMDB...I love the colours of the Greek Islands... I have to admit when I heard the first song of this musical playing, I cringed and pressed fast forward. I hadn't heard it before and I didn't want to. That wasn't the case with the songs that followed. They were oh so familiar and having lived in Sweden, I know it dangerous to attack ABBA--the songwriters for the music. Since it's a musical, it must be about love story and I suppose that's the case. A young woman is getting married to a young man on a Greek island. She lives there with her mother who runs a beat-up vacation hotel. Not much of a story so far until you realize, the mother had flings with three different men some twenty-one years ago and either one these men could be the father. No one knows the entire secret. The daughter secretly invites the three men to her wedding in the hopes of finding out who her father really is. The p…

Frost/Nixon (2008)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009 Frost/Nixon. Feature film. (2008, 122 mins) IMDB...thankfully a 70s-period movie with no avocado appliances... Disgraced president Nixon lives in seclusion in his West Coast mansion. It's the period after his resignation. Ford pardoned him but he continues to deny any wrongdoing. He wants to be in the action, making the calls and asked his opinion. David Frost, a cad, interviews pop stars and magicians. He's a performer, not a serious journalist. When he sees the worldwide broadcast of Nixon's resignation speech, he sees big numbers and gets an idea. Interview Nixon. He's a schemer and dreamer. His TV producer won't back him, his TV broadcaster won't back him but he won't give up. He negotiates a deal to interview Nixon for the incredible sum of $600,000. It's money he doesn't have, but that's only part of the total cost. The sum total of the investment is over $2 million. Hugh dollars for a series of interview…

Cardio (6.0017)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009 ...cardio day with stomach crunches... Thank you, thank you, thank you. I was able to do a full thirty minutes on the elliptical machine without feeling I was going to die from a lack of oxygen. Relief from the allergies. I haven't reached total relief, but it's a big, big improvement.I had time and followed-up my cardio with stomach crunches and bicep curls. Since I don't use heavy weights, it's possible to do them everyday.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 6 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets Posted 2009/05/26 at 19h43ET in Exercise.

The Eye (2008)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009 The Eye. Feature film. (2008, 98 mins) IMDB...at there was an plausible explanation for what happens... A young woman lives a normal life as a blind person. She has an operation where she receives donor eyes. The operation is a success as far as the doctors are concerned, but to her it becomes a nightmare. Not only can she see the world near as a sighted person, but she begins to see ghosts and the grim reaper and fire and smoke. She's living in a hell. It appears real to her and maybe it is real. THE EYE is not my kind of film. I'm not into horror films, not into films about the paranormal or supernatural. I was intrigued by the concept and decided to give it a try. It's far too bizarre for my liking. It just doesn't make any sense to me. I don't get it and never will. I suppose you have to believe in events that can never possibly happen and that's impossible for me to do. Part of Act II is the battle with her medical advisor…

Swing Vote (2008)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009 Swing Vote. Feature film. (2008, 120 mins) IMDB...a silly that is mildly enjoyable but you won't want to see it a second time... SWING VOTE takes an impossible plot situation and pokes fun at the US presidential election. Costner plays a single dad who is completely irresponsible. Lives in a trailer. Drinks too much. Can't keep a low-paying job. If it wasn't for his daughter who plays the parent, he'd probably be in jail or dead. He simply wants to have a good time and doesn't care about tomorrow and he certainly doesn't care about anything going on beyond him including the presidential election. If you asked him the names of the candidates, he wouldn't know. Now the unlikely plot. He's not registered to vote because he fears jury duty and besides he believes his vote doesn't count. His daughter registered him to vote. She's the responsible one; she's interested in politics and making a difference; she's t…

Weights (6.0008)

Monday, May 25, 2009 ...full weights workout... Somehow I managed to miss getting to the gym four of the previous eight days. There's two Sundays in there where I decided to take a day off to rest. There was a Holiday Monday where I managed to miss getting to the gym and on the last Wednesday I had a board meeting to attend and prep for and didn't get in to the gym before hand and it was too late and too nice an evening to go in the evening afterwards. That's four days in total. I have done that since last summer when I was injured and could barely walk.My long-term average is still over six days a week and my average for 2009 is well over that average. I still get in a lot more exercise than most people.Since it was a Monday, that means a weights day so I can get three weights days in during the week. No holding back today and no problems breathing. The allergy symptoms have eased away--thankfully.As I walked around before going to the gym I felt tightness and sore…

Prime (2005)

Monday, May 25, 2009 Prime. Feature film. (2005, 105 mins) IMDB...enough with Jewish characters in movies... She's a Jewish mother and a therapist. Her patient is a successful career woman in NYC, 37, and definitely not Jewish. Then there's the 23 year old son who is finding his way. The son and love interest meet. They hit it off. The problem is the three haven't put it together. The mother hears her patient tell about her son not knowing it's him. The patient doesn't know her therapist is her lover's mother. This coincidence continues until the therapist realizes it has to be her son she's been talking about and eventually they all know what is going on. The film has the usual boy meets girl, they split back together and split again and the last time for good. That's not the happy ending of a romantic comedy we want to see. The film is really an excuse to have all this Jewish non-sense and for the patient to say things to the mother that seem f…

Blindness (2008)

Thursday, May 21, 2009 Blindness. Feature film. (2008, 121 mins) IMDB...adapting a novel is never easy... A simple premise: what if an entire population of a city all went blind? It formed the basis for a novel by a Portuguese writer, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature, and eventually this film. I haven't read the novel but the film has inspired me to do so in part because the film, despite lots of talented people involved in the production, is a failure. Adapting a novel is never easy and sometimes impossible. I want to understand why the novel is a success and the film a failure. Why the break? There's no answer unless I read the novel. The film takes place in non-descript large city in a non-descript country. It was purposely meant to be non-descript. A young man sits in the driver seat of his car waiting for the red light to turn green when in a flash he goes blind. Stuck, a stranger offers to drive him home and does and promptly steals his car. The blindness i…

Exercise (6.0085)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 ...oh what's with these allergies... For the last two weeks I've been battling allergies. The symptoms are familiar. When they wouldn't go away and seemed to get worse, I decided to buy some medication to treat the problem. It worked except for my breathing. The tablets aren't designed for that. Yesterday I was on the elliptical machine with great difficulty breathing. It was arduous. My pace was slow and I thought about stopping over and over again. Today was a slight improvement, but even doing my weights routine was a struggle. Breathing is obviously crucial to an effective workout. I got in two rotations instead of three and didn't bother with leg squats or lunges.Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 2 setsInclined Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 2 setsStomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 4 sets with 3KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 4 sets Tricep Presses on bench: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 sets.Posted 2009/05/20 at 19h18ET i…

My Blueberry Nights (2007)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 My Blueberry Nights. Feature film. (2007, 93 mins) IMDB...sometimes singers break through as actors, sometimes... It's a road movie. It's a love story for several characters. It's about life. Jude Law runs a café in NYC. There's coffee and cakes and pork chops. There's also Norah Jones harassing him in her search for some man who may or may not have been at the café. He's rather obliging with his time with her perhaps because he's got a hard on for her. The opening third of the movie deals with these two characters in his café. She's searching for someone and he's obliging until she gives up on the search and the relationship goes to another level. It's where we learn it's NIGHTS because she has trouble sleeping and BLUEBERRY because at the end of the day, blueberry pie is about all that is left in the café. In fact it's a metaphor on life. People buy the cheese cake and chocolate cake but not the bluebe…