Sunday, May 27, 2007

T-Rex and Noah walk into a bar.....

Me again --

In my daily travels around the net I run into a thing or two that I find interesting, and today was no different.
I do my best to avoid religion discussion, even going so far as to postpone publishing a blog I had written about the Bible, but this one is going to come close to rubbing people the wrong way and to that I say... whatever. Today Im looking through the net and I see this:

Dinosaurs? On the Ark? Lets not even debate whether the Ark was real or not, for this discussion, lets say it was 100% legit... are you really gonna tell me that sitting on the bench next to a fluffy little bunny and Noah himself was T-Rex? Seriously, you gonna try and hand me that? And expect me not to laugh in your face?
And youre also gonna try and tell me that the Grand Canyon was formed in just a couple days instead of the time it actually took? Heck, according to them it didnt even take a week, that was just too long..... to form a gigantic hole in the Earth..... nope, it basically happened overnight.


Perhaps though, the scariest part of this story is the last two paragraphs: "A Gallup poll last year showed almost half of Americans believe that humans did not evolve but were created by God in their present form within the last 10,000 years." And "Three of 10 Republican presidential candidates said in a recent debate that they did not believe in evolution."

Half of America, including 3 presidential candidates, believe that a being that nobody has ever seen and whose existence is based on not even one single fact - no matter how small - just said "poof" one day and we all showed up. Wow. Just... wow.

Have your beliefs, I encourage you to, especially if they help you to lead a better life, but please, dont go handing me any of the crap that the people in Kentucky are trying to pull. Cuz really, honestly, I will laugh in your face.

-- DBW --

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Vacation 07

Happy day yall --

Well, my vacation is pretty much over and for anyone thats curious, I figured Id run it down day by day.

Were up at 4 so we can leave at 5 and head to Disneyland which opens at 8. Theyre opening earlier cuz on Saturday they had the world premier of Pirates Of The Caribbean 3 and they closed the park at 5. So, lucky for us, we get a longer day.
After gas and snacks, were "officially" on the road at 5:30 and a mere hour later were practically pulling into the parking lot. Talk about making good time.
Its finally 8, the park opens, and our first stop is Space Mountain. We get right to the entrance and theres two guys standing there informing everyone that its closed. Closed? No way. Yes way. Damn. Ok, Plan B, lets go to... umm... the Matterhorn. Sure, why not.
So to the Matterhorn we go. Theres no line, we get right on, wave to the Abominable Snowman and were done. Were getting out of the sled and theres two more Disney guys standing at the exit: "Congratulations, you just won Dream Fastpasses in Disneys Year Of A Million Dreams!" Cool! Very cool!
What we actually received was two plastic Dream Fast Passes (DFP) on lanyards that we wore around our necks and they let us go on the rides whenever we wished without having to do the normal Fast Pass thing. Yeah, people were jealous.
I wont go ride by ride, but by lunch time we managed to do: Matterhorn, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Pirates Of The Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, Splash Mountain, The Many Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh, Indiana Jones, Jungle Cruise, Enchanted Tiki Room, got a front row seat to watch Mickey and The Disneyland Band in front of the castle, Its A Small World, Roger Rabbits Cartoon Spin, went to visit Mickey at his house and got to take a picture with him, went on the Monorail for the first time ever and got to sit with the driver, Autopia (DFP), and Space Mountain (DFP).
After lunch we did: Innoventions, Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters (DFP), Aladdins Oasis, got a great seat for Walt Disneys Parade Of Dreams, Star Tours, Indiana Jones (DFP), got an awesome seat for Remember... Dreams Come True Fireworks, Jungle Cruise, Space Mountain (FP), and Disney: The First 50 Magical Years.
We seriously kicked Disneylands butt. And it kinda looks like all we did was go from ride to ride, but it was a very relaxed day and we took our time with everything. It was great. Probably the best time I can remember having at Disneyland... excluding Christmas which is a totally different experience.
One quick story: Were sitting in the area where the statue of Walt and Micky is, right in front of the castle, waiting for the fireworks. Theres gotta be a couple hundred people with us, but its not cramped, just cozy. So were all sitting and waiting, and these two people come up and stand directly in front of everyone. Everyone is like WTF and they turn to everyone and go "Just so you know, this is not a sitting area, so youre all going to have to get up and (pointing to a girl on a blanket) thats not going to be allowed here, so all of you need to just stand up now unless you like looking at peoples asses." Whaaaaaaat? So the girl on the blanket says "I was just here the other night and sat in this same spot and nobody said anything to me." To which the people responded "In case you didnt know, we work here, and so we know the rules and what goes on, and this hasnt been a sitting area for a couple of years now, so you better get up before someone comes over and says something to you." Nobody moved, and they continued to stand directly in everyones way. The announcement comes on that the fireworks are about to start and since nobody came over to us to say anything, the two people had no choice but to sit their ample asses down while everyone else laughed at them. The one thing that surprised me was that for Disney cast members, they were pretty damn rude and acted all Holier than thou. Walt would not be pleased.
Also, while we were waiting for the fireworks to start, two couples, at different times, got engaged in front of the castle. :)
Oh yeah, one more thing... while were on Autopia, while trying to beep the horn that isnt there, Blanca managed to punch me in the face. Hard. Dont ask how, if you know her you already know the answer.

After a good nights sleep in a surprisingly decent "cheap" motel - I swear, it was better than a couple Vegas ones Ive stayed in - we were on our way to Universal Studios.
Theres nothing really "interesting" about our day here, but I do have to say that if you go here and decide not to get the all you can eat pass and all you can drink pass, youre dumb. Its $25 at the park or $20 online and you can eat as much as youd like from three specified restaurants, and all you can drink from anywhere. We ate at all three places and must have consumed about $100 worth of food each. Too bad Disneyland doesnt have that cuz lunch alone there was almost $100. Ok, maybe not that much, but it was close.
Also, we were at Fear Factor Live and one of the contestants got eliminated and they called his girlfriend on stage to talk to her about it and then he proposed. So that was three in two days. :)

Today was the Dolphin Interaction Program at Sea World. We checked in at 10am, went through a safety course, got into our wetsuits, and headed into the water for about a half hours worth of playing with the dolphins. It was very cool and very cold, but worth it and I wanna do it again.
Quick story: There were these two women there that would... not... shut... up. From the moment we started our safety course they acted like they knew everything just because they did it a long time ago. "Do we still get to swim with the dolphins?" "No, thats been moved to our Trainer For A Day Program." "Are you sure because when we did it a while ago we got to swim with them?" "Yes, Im sure, we used to do it here, but its been moved." "Well that sucks and that was the only reason to take this thing and if we knew it wasnt here we wouldnt have taken it again."
Then we all went to go get into our wetsuits and we couldnt get into the water until we were all ready, but there was one little boy who was scared and didnt wanna get into his suit, and everyone was okay with it and understood cuz he was a little kid... well, everyone except for the two women. "Are we ever going to get into the water? Weve been waiting for a very long time now? I have three kids that are screaming for me and if I knew it was going to take this long I never would have done it! Its been a hour, damn, this is taking forever! Cant we just get in there already?"
Yes, we were waiting a bit, but it was not even close to an hour, maybe... maybe... 10 minutes, 15 at most. Either way, not long enough for them to go on and on and on about it. And, despite being told no by the first trainer they asked, they asked four others if they could swim with the dolphins. They were so rude, so disrespectful, so... so... I just wanted to go up to them and slap em upside the head. Everyone was getting frustrated with them and they were pissing everyone off, and they were "this close" to ruining it for everyone. I swear, there are people in this world that only think about themselves and dont care if their actions cause others discomfort. I hate them.

Today we went to the Wild Animal Park to take their Deluxe Photo Caravan tour. It was a 3 hour and 45 minute safari through the animal enclosures and despite getting a very late start, we managed to get there just in time to climb aboard our truck. I wont go animal by animal, but the highlights were getting to feed giraffes - including the parks star, Ivan - and then getting to feed a rhino - the only place in the entire world that lets you do this. Theres nothing like having an Indian rhino eat your apple carrying hand. I know Ive said it many times already, but this was cool. And yeah, I wanna go do it again.
Quick story, but skip to the next day if you dont wanna be grossed out. Were on the truck, driving through the enclosures, and Blanca says shes starting to feel a little sick and she doesnt feel like eating anything. No big deal. Well, we get to take a break and the tour guides hand out drinks and snacks and despite feeling sick, she manages to devour her bag of chips and some of my pretzels. She never listens, not even to herself. So we get back on the truck to head back to the animals and Blanca says "Im gonna throw up." Theres nowhere for us to go, the truck cant stop so she can get off cuz theres literally animals all around us, and were frantically trying to find a solution. So there were these paper cups that were on the truck for us to get water with and she tells me to grab her one... and when she thinks nobody is looking... bleh! right into the cup. How exactly do you spell the vomit noise? Anywho, she continued to do this until the cup was full. And were on a bumpy truck, and its "this close" to spilling, and she still wants to feed the animals... so guess whos stuck holding it? Yep, that would be me. "Pookie, would you like me to hold your cup of vomit while you feed the giraffe?" Things Ill do for the girl. :)

We had a day off cuz Blanca had an appointment with the government and you cant really tell them no. But it was a very good appointment and was the last one she had to do and everything is good now. So Im totally ok with missing out on the Zoo so she could get this taken care of.

Today was Legoland. I know, I know, its just for kids, but we wanted to go cuz weve never been. And ya know what, youre right, its pretty much just for kids. There was plenty of adults there, even by themselves, but for the most part, each adult had like nine kids with them.
The best part of Legoland has to be Miniland. Seven different cities, recreated in miniature, with Legos. You could get lost here just looking at all the details and trying to find everything thing they snuck in. Like a ninja breaking into someones house, and I guarantee you that Im one of the very very few to have ever found him.
But yeah, if you have the extra money and a free day, give it a look, otherwise, dont go unless you have kids that are tall enough to get on the rides cuz if theyre not, then its a waste fo time for everyone.

So yeah, that was my vacation. Feel free to check out the pictures scattered throughout my Flickr page, theyre not all there yet, but Ill get to em. Eventually.

Til next time...

-- DBW --

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

My hero

Just dropping in for a quickie.

So, I return home from my Disneyland / Universal Studios trip and see that Jimmy Carter - our 39th President, author, volunteer for Habitat For Humanity, 2002 Nobel Peace Prize winner, etc etc etc, that Jimmy Carter - came out and verbally bitch slapped President Bush calling his administration... "the worst in history."

Hell yeah!!!

He went on...

"The overt reversal of America's basic values as expressed by previous administrations, including those of George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon and others, has been the most disturbing to me."
"We now have endorsed the concept of pre-emptive war where we go to war with another nation militarily, even though our own security is not directly threatened, if we want to change the regime there or if we fear that some time in the future our security might be endangered, but that's been a radical departure from all previous administration policies."
He also said Bush "abandoned or directly refuted" every negotiated nuclear arms agreement, as well as environmental efforts by other Presidents.
"The policy from the White House has been to allocate funds to religious institutions, even those that channel those funds exclusively to their own particular group of believers in a particular religion. As a traditional Baptist, I've always believed in separation of church and state and honored that premise when I was president, and so have all other presidents, I might say, except this one."

And about Britains support, specifically for the Iraq war, he said "I think the almost undeviating support by Great Britain for the ill-advised policies of President Bush in Iraq have been a major tragedy for the world."
And for Tony Blairs support of Bush he said he was "Abominable. Loyal blind. Apparently subservient."

That ol' peanut farmer gots some nuts on him, huh?

Aight, Ill write more when my vacation wraps up, and if you frequent my pictures, Ill have a bunch of new ones there soon too.

Until next time...

-- DBW --

(Update 1: After writing my peanut joke, I see that Steven Colbert of The Colbert Report "stole" it. Not word for word, but he did. What the heck man... what the heck?!)
(Update 2: Sadly, Mr Carter has backed off of the "worst in history" comment by saying it was "careless or misinterpreted." I guess his nuts are shrinking. Steal that one Stevie boy, steal that one.)

Friday, May 04, 2007

The American Way

Aloha --

Know what I hate? Barry Bonds? Yeah, him, and his time is coming again, and way too soon. But no, something else.

The President? Ok, ok, yeah, him too - and I just might write something a bit later about that one, but thats not what this is about either.

No, what I hate, and its really annoying me, is the way movie studios continue to release their dvds. The practice of unleashing the initial version of "Movie" in January. Then in March releasing "Movie: The Expanded Edition" in March. Then in May you get "Movie: The Super Duper Ultimate You Really Gotta Buy This One Edition." And then just in time for Christmas, youre blessed with "Movie: The Last One Was Okay, But This One Is Even More Super Duper And If You Dont Buy It You Suck Edition."

I have a decently sized movie collection. Not enormous, but not bad. As I sit here looking at it, its pretty difficult to find a movie I own that hasnt had multiple editions released after I bought it. Whats worse is that these "expanded editions" that come out usually consist of nothing more than "8 EXTRA MINUTES!!!" or "THE ENDING YOU DIDNT SEE IN THEATERS... OR ON THE DVD YOU ALREADY HAVE!!!" Stuff that 1) didnt make it into the theatrical release for a reason and 2) should have been included on the first edition of the dvd in the first place.
Now, dont get me wrong, Im not knocking the extras that are included on the movies I buy, in fact, I seek out the extras, I love the extras, and there are movies I own in which Ive only watched the extras and nothing else. Its just I cant justify, in any way, the need to buy numerous editions of a movie, in the same year, barely months apart, at $25 a pop, for the sake of mere minutes of deleted scenes. Was "Spiderman 2.1" really necessary just to see the scene where Peter was playing with "Little Spidey" while looking at pictures of Supergirl? Dont think so.
But its the American way I suppose. To squeeze as much money out of people as possible while giving them as little as you can in return.

Lucky for me, I dont have any money. :) Umm... I mean :(

-- DBW --