Monday, May 31, 2010

AFI Top 100 Movies

In an effort to dive deep into cinema, we have decided to watch all of the movies from AFI's Top 100 movies list. We removed the movies that we have seen before but that only took about 5 movies from the list. I wrote the names of the movies on pieces of paper, we cut them up and put them in a jar. First, we will watch the movies we actually own and then we will fill our Netflix queue with the movies that we randomly draw from the jar. The list of movies is on the right side of my blog. I have crossed out the ones we have already seen and will continue to cross out the movies we watch. We don't have a deadline but we hope to watch 2 movies during the week and 2 a weekend. At that rate, we will be done in November. Yikes, we might need to step it up!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Lost

The end. I'm just going to say that all along, I loved Lost for the characters. For the relationships. I also enjoyed the mystery and the mythology but not as much as I loved the characters. I wanted them to be happy and to be redeemed. I had hoped whether they stayed on the island forever or found themselves lucky enough to leave, that they would find a place where they could be happy. Last night, they found that place. Some people are hating on the finale, saying they didn't get answers and calling it a cop-out. How so? Because we didn't find out why Walt was special? Who CARES. The island story was finished. It was completed. Jack "saved the world" and sacrificed himself to help his friends leave the island. If the sideways world would have been the prominent story line for 6 seasons, I could understand the backlash. But it existed this season for a reason. To create closure for our characters. This episode was beautiful. Jack stumbling to his final resting place was beautiful. Vincent coming up and sitting next to him while the Ajira plane flew over was beautiful. Jack's smile on his face said it all. He found his purpose. And the reunion of all of our characters in the church, smiling and happy, was so emotional. They found each other again. Go back and watch it again. Erase expectation from your mind. Forget about the island mysteries. Focus on the people, their journey to find happiness. Maybe LOST, the title, wasn't referring to them disappearing on an island. Maybe it was referring to their souls. They were lost but found each other.

Friday, May 21, 2010

:Steps on soapbox, covers head with a shield:

I like to keep things light here at See Michelle Blog. But sometimes my political side comes out, I get angry and I think, this is my space and I should use it to communicate my point of view. Sometimes, I talk about the ordeals I go through to get red vines and other times I comment on current events. This whole illegal immigration thing is dividing our country right now. People are pissed and heated and pointing fingers every where. In my lifetime, I don't remember an issue being so hot. I'm on the Conservative Republican side of the political spectrum. You can think what you want about me and I welcome you to assume to know where I stand on a variety of issues. You might be surprised to find out but I'm not going to get into that now. What I am going to copy and paste is a conversation between Wolf Blitzer and the President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon. BLITZER: So if people want to come from Guatemala or Honduras or El Salvador or Nicaragua, they want to just come into Mexico, they can just walk in? CALDERON: No. They need to fulfill a form. They need to establish their right name. We analyze if they have not a criminal precedent. And they coming into Mexico. Actually... BLITZER: Do Mexican police go around asking for papers of people they suspect are illegal immigrants? CALDERON: Of course. Of course, in the border, we are asking the people, who are you? And if they explain... BLITZER: At the border, I understand, when they come in. CALDERON: Yes. BLITZER: But once they're in... CALDERON: But not -- but not in -- if -- once they are inside the -- inside the country, what the Mexican police do is, of course, enforce the law. But by any means, immigration is a crime anymore in Mexico. BLITZER: Immigration is not a crime, you're saying? CALDERON: It's not a crime. BLITZER: So in other words, if somebody sneaks in from Nicaragua or some other country in Central America, through the southern border of Mexico, they wind up in Mexico, they can go get a job... CALDERON: No, no. BLITZER: They can work. CALDERON: If -- if somebody do that without permission, we send back -- we send back them. So, in Mexico, if you do not fill out the right papers, go through the process and are found to be illegal, you get sent back to your country. You can't work there without filling out a form. Why then, in the United States, we are consider racists for wanting people to fill out a form and establish their name and make sure they are not a criminal before working? I'm not pinpointing the new Arizona law. I'm talking about what the President of Mexico said loud and clear in this interview. You can not step foot in his country and just start working without filling out the forms. You will be SENT BACK if you have not filled out the forms. Interesting. P.S. I do like this quote from our Attorney General: "I've just expressed concerns on the basis of what I've heard about the [Arizona] law. But I'm not in a position to say at this point, not having read the law, not having had the chance to interact with people are doing the review, exactly what my position is." --ERIC HOLDER My next post is going to be a review of the movie "Ironman 2" which I haven't seen but I have heard people talking about it. So I'm going to give my thoughts and opinions about the movie. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

A Story of Redemption

A few weeks ago, the vending machine in my office building was being replaced. I was very happy with the new selection being offered. Red vines, ritz crackers, gobstoppers. There was a .10 cent price increase but that was ok. I was willing to pay an extra .10 cents in order to have red vines and gobstoppers at my disposal. On my first trip to purchase my beloved Red Vines, I ran into a road block. The coil didn't turn all the way and the red vine package got stuck. This happened every once and a while with the old machine and I would simply shake it back and forth and my item would fall. But not this time. The plastic was stuck in the coil and those red vines weren't going anywhere. I sulked off in defeat, no longer excited about the new machine. I cursed it as I went back to my desk and ate pretzel sticks. Boring. Days later, I decided to try again. I wanted those damn red vines. I was prepared to pay DOUBLE for them if they got stuck again. I placed .75 cents in the machine and watched as once again, the plastic got stuck. Its cool, I thought. Maybe when I put another .75 cents in, both will fall out! Yeah right!! I'm not that lucky in life. The first package came falling out while the second again, got stuck. This had to come to an end. I spoke to our front desk clerk about this pressing issue. She made a note of it and said that the guy in charge of the vending company gave her an envelope of money just in case someone was robbed of their snack. I was delighted to have .75 cents back but in the back of my mind, I knew I was owed $1.50 but I didn't say anything. Last night, I had to work late and needed something to munch on. I made my way to the vending machine and stared lovingly at the red vines. I didn't want to take my chances so I went with peanut m&m's instead. I watched them fall (I always hold my breath thinking they will get stuck too), bent over, opened the little door and reached in to grab my treat. That is when it happened. Like a divine miracle from above. What was sitting there along with my m&m's? Glorious red vines. REDEMPTION!!!! I put the m&m's in my purse for another day (or the next morning when I drove to work...dont judge me!) and happily ate my red vines. And that my friends is how a crappy Monday turns into a golly gee awesome Monday.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Lost: Spoilers

For people who say this episode was lame or didn't mean anything, you are wrong. Just wrong. Haven't we always wondered what the deal is with this island? Who is this smoke monster? Where did it come from? Obviously, we have been getting little details over the course of this season about the Smoke Monster but last night's episode really showed us the origins. Some thoughts: 1. It seems like multiple island groups think they are always "the good people" and others are always "the bad people." Fake Mom said that those men were bad people when really, they shipwrecked. But I don't think they shipwrecked. Fake Mom has the power to bring people to the island. She needed replacements. This was her chance to get them and when Birth Mom spit out twins, Fake Mom saw an opportunity to pass on her legacy. 2. Second Twin doesn't have a name. No name could be so important and mighty that they hold off telling us this long. Birth Mom didn't have a name for him, so Fake Mom didn't name him. 3. When Jacob threw his brother into the light, the smoke monster was released, again*. The Smoke Monster took over No Name's soul and body and was free to the island. He tossed the physical body aside because he didn't need it anymore. Just like he didn't need John Locke's actual body when he took over his soul. *Again?........ 4. I totally think that Fake Mom was both the smoke monster and the protector. She needed replacements which is why she killed their birth mom. She noticed the difference in their abilities. Did you see the destruction to Man in Black's camp? NO WAY she could have done that with her bare hands. She turned into Smokey and did that. And when MIB killed her, he snuck up on her, not letting her say a word before stabbing her through the chest with that dagger. The same dagger MIB gave Richard all those years ago to kill Jacob. And the mom said "thank you" when MIB killed her because she said "that going into the light pond thingy was worse than death." She had been living that awful life and was glad to be dead. Her reign as the smoke monster was over and she was relieved. And she found her replacement (Jacob) to protect the island. The cycle of finding replacements goes on and on. And Smokey still wants to leave, just like he always has since finding out the truth about his birth mom's death. Jacob continues to search for his replacement, telling those he came in contact with that MIB/Smokey leaving the island would be bad for man kind, just like his mom told him. This episode was important for the mythology of Lost. It shows the basis of the Jacob vs. Smokey/MIB battle. And it relates to what the Castaways and Whidmore are going to fight for in the next two episodes. I'm not really sure what is going to happen at this point. I can't even guess what is going to go down but I can't wait to watch!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Youngest Daughter Day

August is just about the only month that doesn't have some special "day" attached to it. And since there is a "day" for everything, I'm going to proclaim August 1 Youngest Daughter Day. I want people to recognize me for being the youngest daughter. I want a card and breakfast in bed. Whats that? You are the oldest daughter? Oh I'm sorry. There is no day for that. Only Child? Nope, you are outta luck. This whole thing with special days is getting out of control. Some call them Hallmark Holidays. I call them a day on the calendar. It all started with me getting pissy on Administrative Professional Day. Oh I'm sorry, you go to work everyday and do what you are supposed to do and you want a card and flowers and a special pat on the back? Where is Project Assistant Day? What about Neurosurgeon Day? You can't forget about Professional Cow Herders, they deserve a day too. Why do you feel like you are OWED special recognition on this day? I don't get a day, damnit. But I don't want one. I get rewarded for my job at the end of every month with a paycheck. The expectation that busy people should take note of their calendar for just your position is crazy. No one owes you anything, ever. Not on your birthday, not on Mother's Day, Father's Day, never. Your husband didn't get you a card on behalf of your 1 month old child for Mother's Day? Dudes don't think like that! Wake up and smell the gender differences!!!! If you want something for Mother's Day, how about hmmmm, I don't know.....ASK FOR IT. Isn't time with your family enough? Isn't the blessing of a healthy child and a loving husband worth it? Why do you need a $2.00 greeting card to tell you that you are a good mom? WHY?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

No, NO, NO

EXCUSE ME Not attractive in the least bit vampire dude.
TAKE THAT HAT OFF. Did you grow up in Long Beach? Did you go to Long Beach State? Have you ever step foot on campus? Have you attended a sporting event? Perhaps a Dirtbags baseball game or a basketball game at the Pyramid?
No? NO You haven't! Take off that hat. It isn't a LA Dodgers hat they you just wear. Or a UCLA or USC hat that people in SoCal wear because those are ginormous universities, even though they didn't actually go to those schools.
We are talking about CSU, Long Beach. You don't look cool for wearing an LB hat. You look like a TOOL. That goes for you too, Leonardo DiCaprio because I know you used to wear one as well.
REMOVE THAT HAT POST HASTE.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Carmel: 17 mile drive

After we left Cannery Row, we went to our hotel, Hyatt Regency Del Monte Golf Course. I failed to take any pictures of the hotel but it was very nice. We were able to get a room looking out to the golf course, a coupon for 2 free breakfasts and 2 50% off drink coupons for the bar. SCORE. The hotel isn't super close to downtown but it is close to Highway 1 which gave us great access to drive to Carmel. For dinner, I was craving Mexican food so I asked the concierge for her suggestions. She offered two places: one in Monterey by Cannery Row and another in the Carmel Valley. I sent a text to my Monterey expert friend, Kim and she gave an approval for Baja Cantina in Carmel Valley. It was the place to go because about 20 high schoolers going to prom were seated on the patio outside. The inside was small but we got a table right away. My rosemary chicken burrito was great. And get this....my husband ordered a steak. At a Mexican restaurant. He said it was just alright. Obviously. We went back to our hotel, went to the bar and had a few drinks at 50%. Chris refreshed his phone looking for results of the Mayweather-Mosley fight since the SPORTS BAR we were sitting in wasn't showing the fight. Strange, I know. The next morning, we got up early, ate our free breakfast and hit the road to Carmel. We paid $9.50 and started on the 17 mile drive. Totally worth the $9.50. The Lone Cypress. Seriously. How amazingly beautiful is this view? After seeing a lot of huge houses, we got to Pebble Beach Golf Course. My husband loves golfing and he nearly passed out when he laid his eyes on this golf course. He was so excited. And they were already setting up for the U.S. Open in June which added another level of cool. I can already hear the roaring of the crowds!! We didn't actually get out and walk around in fear of being told that we were riff raff and getting thrown out. So we drove down a road, turned around and got outta there. Next stop, Carmel. See the golf course on the right? The golf course is literally built on the cliffs. So awesome. We left the beach area and went to Ocean St where we got some candy, I got a cute Coach purse and we strolled along holding hands. It was really nice. And then we left and drove back to reality. I miss you Monterey.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Monterey Bay Aquarium

I'm a Left Coast Girl. More specifically, a California girl. Sure, our state is near broke and it can be expensive to live here but I will gladly suffer through those negative aspects to be a short drive away from some beautiful sites. Tahoe, San Francisco and even a 6.5 hour drive to the beaches and touristy sites of Southern California. Lucky for me, it is just a 3 hour drive to Monterey and Carmel where I went this weekend with my husband. First up, pictures from the Aquarium. There are lots so be prepared. After lunch at Bubba Gumps, we walked down to the Aquarium.... This fishy looked grumpy! I saw this sea otter from the lower level and thought it was a wet mop. Homeboy was getting his suntan on!!! That is a lot of fish Yikes! Its a swarm of jelly fish thingies. I can't remember exactly what these were called... Sea horsies!!! Sea dragon! Creepy This sea horsie was teeny tiny. So cute. Look! His tail is wrapped around the grass. Cute. Platypus Flamingos The beautiful colors are amazing One of these things is not like the other. One of these things doesn't belong. That is a real big fish. Tomorrow, take a trip along the 17 Mile Drive in Carmel. Marvel at the beauty. Be jealous that you don't live here. :)