Here’s my full review of Star Wars The Last Jedi. If you haven’t seen the movie yet don’t watch this.
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I just finished reading (listening to) Ready Player One: A Novel This was an interesting book.
Here’s the basic premise of the book. The story takes place in the future and it’s pretty dismal. A guy named Halliday created a virtual world that sounds like something similar to “2nd Life” called the Oasis. This virtual world works by putting on a pair of special classes that project the images directly onto your retina and this world is suppose to be so amazing the real world looks like a fog compared to it. Everyone on planet Earth is addicted to this thing. After Halliday (the creator of the Oasis) died he left a message to the world about a final easter egg he has hidden inside this virtual world. Whoever discovers this egg is the heir to Halliday’s entire estate. Halliday, a scholar of 1980s pop culture, has left several clues leading to the final easter egg all these clues pertain to Video Games, RPGS, Comic Books, Television Shows and Movies from the 1980s.
The book shines in it’s meticulously researched references to so many obscure facets of 1980s culture. The book even mentions the RPG Game Champion’s, The made for T.V. Special Ewoks and The Battle For Endor, D&D’s creators Gygax & Arneson, Atari’s Joust and a large amount of late 1970s and 1980s trivia I never even knew about. As far as the story goes the book starts out really slow and it was a struggle to get through the first quarter of it after that the story takes off and I couldn’t put it down till I got to the end of it.
Now here’s some of the stuff in the book I didn’t like or I felt just didn’t make much sense.
Overall it was a good book and while I couldn’t put it down I will admit by the end I was ready for it to be over. I had heard more obscure 1980s trivia than I ever wanted to know.
“Play not work is the end of life. To participate in the rites of play is to dwell in the Kingdom of Ends. To participate in work, career and the making of history is to labor in the Kingdom of Means. The modern age, the age of history, nourishes illusions. Work is serious, important, adult. It’s essential insignificance is overlooked. Work of course must be done. But we should be wise enough to distinguish necessity from reality. Play is reality work is diversion and escape.” – Michael Novak The Joy of Sports
Darkwalker on Moonshae (Forgotten Realms-Moonshae Trilogy, Book 1) by Douglas Niles is the inaugural book in the Forgotten Realms Series of novels published in 1987. This first book gets an automatic two stars for it’s awesome name and book cover alone. The book also contains a lot of cool things like More Hounds (large dogs used for hunting), Wolves, a Sword with Special Abilities, Unicorns, Blood Riders, Invisible Fairy Dragons, Northmen and several wars and battles all of which earn this book an additional star. Beyond that while it does have a few page turning moments the overall story is just ok and moves a bit slow for me from time to time.
Here’s a quick run down. The Moonshae isles are an archipelago located about 400 miles southwest off the Sword Coast of the Forgotten Realms. In this book an evil shape shifting beast of demonic origin called Kazgaroth takes on a human form to gain command of the Northmen a group of war loving roid raging men who want more than anything to raid and kill the Ffolk an agricultural monarchical society of pussies that live in the southern Moonshae islands. Thanks to Kazgaroth’s completely psychotic influence the Northmen wage war upon the Ffolk not just to fight it’s armies but kill all it’s people. Massive war breaks out between the Ffolk and the Northmen. Tristan an expert dog trainer who loves hunting and has a crush on his sister who although was raised by his father does not share a blood relationship to him has been judged by his dad as unworthy to rule the kingdom. Therefore throughout this adventure Tristan fights to prove his worth to his father and win the romantic affection of his sister while discovering some of his own talents and abilities.
I give this book an overall rating of three stars two for an awesome title and cover and one for having all the cool things I listed show up in it. Beyond that it was just ok.
Not too long ago I posted here about how useless and annoying white boards are when it comes to martial arts coaching. Since I am also guilty of having a white board in my private studio I thought I might as well post a current picture of what it looks like. Below is a brief and somewhat incomplete transcription of everything on it. What you’ll notice is I made a lot of lists. This is because the brain is attracted to organization and order and people have been trying to organize techniques for training purposes since the dawn of martial arts. In reality nothing in fighting is organized and response needs to be based on real internalized skill and application not just a theoretical list.
It seems to be a tradition for each preceding generation to bash the next one. Grant Morrison wrote about this in his book Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human, Morrison believes the older generations have always despised and detested the younger. The younger generation is detested because they will ultimately replace the older generation reminding them of their mortality and inevitable demise. In fact the older generation is so enraged with the reality of their impending expiration they will purposefully create wars and send young kids off to kill each other. In a failed effort to forget their own mortality they will subconsciously take measures to eliminate their successors. You may or may not agree with Grant Morrison’s hypothesis on why generational bashing exists and it really doesn’t matter. The question is does it do any good? I believe the answer is no. I don’t see any change happen when one generation bashes another. Improvements are not being made I don’t believe it will help anyone get better.
1. Inorder to improve you will need to learn by doing.
2. White boards make people feel like they are in school or a formal educational setting. School is boring and formal education isn’t fun.
3. The class becomes too cerebral the white board will take you out of your body and put you back into your head.
4. Those who are inclined to learn the white board way usually are already very good at understanding mechanics, concepts and principals on an intellectual level but unable performe their understanding physically.
I remember when this game was in every 7-11 and Arcade across the nation. There’s nothing cooler than two guys with blue and pink jeans some vests walking through the streets taking out a Gang with the side kicks, hair grabs and knees to get the girl friend back from the Big Boss.
Having a long time intrest in heavy metal and rock music my research eventually lead me to studing blues music and finally to Robert Johnson. The all documented all true manga about the legendary blues great Me and the Devil Blues: The Unreal Life of Robert Johnson is beautifully illustrated and historically accurate book following the journey of a man who was rumored to have sold his soul to the devil to inorder to become the greatest blues man of all time. I strongly recommend picking this book up. If you don’t believe me on how good it is you can read almost the entire thing online for free on Manga Eden here. But I think you will want to own your own copy.
Recently finished reading Al Capp: A Life to the Contrary actually I listened to the unabridged audio version of the book as I rarely ever read books anymore. If you are unfamiliar with Al Capp (1909-1979) he was a Cartoonist most famous for his news paper strip Li’l Abner a strip he worked on for forty years. Al Capp also wrote two additional comic strips Abbie an/ Slats and Long Sam. Capp used a number of assistants throughout the years to help him with his work including the great Frank Frazetta who worked on Li’l Abner from 1954 to 1961. Later on Capp toured college campuses as a conservative speaker and was accused of sexually assaulting a number of female college students. In 1968 at the University of Alabama police escorted him off campus for sexually assaulting a woman. In Wisconsin he was charged with sodomy the charge was later changed to propositioning a married woman to which he pled guilty to in a plea agreement. Later on Goldie Han while beginning her career as an actress reported Al Capp had propositioned her for sex during what he told her would be an audition to play one of the female characters in a film adaptation of his comic strip Li’l Abner. Although the book only dedicates one chapter to all of the sexual allegations made against Al Capp the evidence does sit in his favor and leads me to believe he was an absolute and complete piece of shit as a person. Over all this biography is a fascinating read covering not just the history and story of Al Capps rise to fame and fortune as a cartoonist but also a large part of news paper comic strip history as a whole. I highly recommend the book.
The Karate Kid has for a long time been one of my all time favorite movies. I saw the film in the theater and it blew my mind. Now with this video out I don’t know what to think. It changes everything. Is Daniel really the Bully? or is this just an example of how someone can spin just about anything to mean something else.
A lot of people ask me who does my websites. I was managing all of them solo with the help of a friend until the beginning of 2015. After several of my WordPress sites got hit with viruses multiple times I had to do something about it. I brought in Jay from Your Web Designer. I had worked with Jay a few times in the past now I needed someone who could stay on top of it and keep my sites running and virus free. He manages everything now. Since brining Jay on board I waste less time fiddling around with setting up and designing websites and I’m able to focus more on creating cool content and drawing. After clearing all the virus and malware Jay moved all my sites to a faster more secure server then redesigned a bunch of sites that needed over hauls. We built everything all in Joomla with the exception of 3 websites I still need to be on WordPress. After that we came up with a plan to further secure my sites and we moved the Joomla sites to a separate server from the WordPress sites. WordPress is so popular and used by so many people today those sites get attacked a lot. We also back everything up each day. In addition to all of that I’ve been sitting on a number of urls for the past several years. These are urls I bought for future projects. Now instead of just sitting on these urls Jay built websites for all of them. I now have around 20 or so web sites! But we are constantly upgrading and improving each one. Even though you may only currently be aware of 4 or 5 of my web sites right now like http://sandiegocatchwrestling.com or http://samscontact.com or the site you are reading now I have many more completed websites I’ll be rolling out soon. Until then if you need help getting a website up here’s Jay’s contact info.
I’m honestly considering forsaking Star Wars completely and no longer being a fan of it. It’s ruined and I’ll never be able to enjoy it again. I will sell off all my Star Wars T-Shirts and toys and other stuff then move on with my life. Star Wars Land within Disneyland? Does an entire land of Star Wars really have a place within the original Disneyland? I always thought Star Tours was cool but it was only one ride and it fit within the theming of Tomorrow Land. Disney is for the most part an IP farm now that doesn’t even animate the majority of their own cartoons. Watch park tickets rise towards $200 a day once this thing goes in and crowds sore to record numbers. I came across this Ramones album titled, “Brain Drain” when I was in highschool. I found it while thumbing through a bunch of CDs in some used records shop. I thought the cover art and album title were cool. I use to listen to this song from the album posted below over and over again it’s about not looking back. Star Wars has reached that time.
I just finished listening to the unabridged audio edition of Grant Morrison’s book; Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human.
Because I am a slow reader and like to listen to books while I am drawing I prefere to listen to books I get on Audible instead of reading them.
Supergods is a 480pg book about the history of comic books the development of the comic book industry and a biography of the author Grant Morrison’s live as a comic book creator, including his philosophy approach and process to writing.
If you don’t know who Grant Morrison is check out Batman Arkham Asylum, Flex Mentallo: Man of Muscle Mystery, Animal Man and one of my all time favorites All Star Superman. Morrison is one of the great comic book writers of the modern era.
Some of my favorite parts in the book are Morrison’s breakdowns of Frank Miller’s “Dark Knight Returns” and Alan Moore’s “Watchmen.” Both are books I’ve read several times over and Morrison sheds light on a number of incites I had never thought of or picked up on before. I also like how Grant Morrison describes his approach to comic book writing as more of an observer or visitor who watches things unfold as they happen and records them. Grant Morrison’s description of a quest for the shamanic experiences as he formulates new stories ideas is another really interesting concept. Over all I really enjoyed the book.
Martial Arts WITHOUT punching makes no sense...
Ancient Scrolls of the Unknown Masters