Monday, May 28, 2007

2 Years With the Croatian Sensation

Well today's the big landmark - 2 years dating MJ. 1 Year and a bit in Peace River and nearly a year living together.
For those counting that's 2 freakin' years. 2! But great years they've been and (although cliche) things keep getting better.
So since I'm sure she doesn't read this anyways (ok, she says she does, but like everyone else, never comments) I thought I'd detail how we met in a totally biased retelling.

Flashback 2 years ago.
The scene: Moon Saloon, Peace River.
Imagine that one bar in the shitty part of town where you'd only go to if everything else had a line up and/or they had cheap beer. Now imagine the patrons peeing on cop cars outside and you've got a good idea of Peace River's number 1 (and only) club.

I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's reverse to 6 hours earlier.
It was friday - and as with every friday, us cheap writers had made a tradition of heading to the only buffet in town. It was a Chinese Buffet, but looking back, it was pretty much 5 different ways of cooking chicken and the option of rice or salad. In any case, I had invited MJ (the cute new news lady) out to our tradition and, lo and behold, she actually joined us.

Buoyed by this mini-success I promptly made like a man and told another girl that I 'liked her' and if she could suss out the situation that night at the going away party for one of our writers. You know, what girls do best.

Yep - I was that smooth.
Fast forward a few hours and we were finishing up a meal while I was making painful conversation about MJ's cell phone and how the little cartoon at the beginning was kind of cute. It was my 'A' game to be sure, but she bit and when it came time to move locations she made it quite obvious that she was at least willing to give me a chance:

Me: I don't know if I'm going out tonight.
Her: No, you're going out tonight. And you're driving me.

Jackpot! In an effort to help a good cause, my good buddies Trent and Heather lent me their car for the occasion and I was able to give MJ the first of many rides. Ba-doom-ching!

Once we arrived at the moon saloon, the girl I had confessed to about MJ wasted no time in dragging her to the washroom for a girls talking following which I bought a few drinks and coerced her into dancing for a couple slow country songs. She accepted and the night ran its natural course (which for the moon saloon ment 80+ guys went home sexually frustrated while the 2 or 3 actual females passed out behind the air conditioner out back).

At about 2am, it was decided that I would be driving a boat load of drunk people home - MJ included (though not drunk as others as she had to work in 3 hours). Thanks to some creative mapping, she was the last person I'd drop off and while we wouldn't end the night with a kiss (that was the next day) we did simultaneously ask each other out. I'd like to think I made the initial 'would you...' but she'll tell you different.

Flash forward 2 years and here we are. And to you, MJ, if you actually read this - thanks for everything and for everything still to come.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Shrekked Off

And open letter to Shrek's Marketing Team: Stop. Seriously...put the CGI down.
Though I haven't sat down with the numbers, I'm fairly sure that the number of animated Shrek commercials equals - nay exceeds - the actual amount of animation for the movie. I can't turn a channel now without seeing Donkey and Shrek whore themselves out for something else.
And an overweight shit-eating ogre as the mascot for healthy eating at McDonalds? Huh?
Look - marketing is fine - business is business, but Shrek was a franchise that catered to a more jaded / sarcastic audience who had their fill of machine made movies and enjoyed the slanted take on the genre.
Now, its become THAT VERY GENRE. Shrek 3 looks to me like nothing more than a toy/M&M/videogame/happy meal selling vehicle.
I have fond memories of the first Shrek. I took my mom to it for Mother's Day. We laughed. It was new. Fresh.

Shrek's dignity brought to you by the New 2008 Ford Escape

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Link Lot Special Edition

Many people ask me: "Matt, how do you do it? How do you blog twice, nay, nearly 3 times a week?"
A daunting task, I know. And like a magician, I can't give away my secrets, but I can tell you that much of the process relies on extreme web savvy and a knack for finding inspiration in the smallest of internet pearls.
That and I'm this damned computer far too much.

Now, In a very special Link post, I thought I'd paste the 7 ten sites that are currently doing the best job at keeping me busy and/or distracted. I did this before, so I apologize for the overlap (if there's any). Either way, If you've read this blog before and remotely like what I have to say, I'm sure you'll enjoy these suggestions:

In no order:
Kotaku: Recently one of Jack Thompson's latest targets, this gaming blog is a fairly comprehensive round up of all things videogame - without the inflated reviews and finely tuned marketing.
The Consumerist: Remember those 60 minute exposes where they bring in a truck for repairs and secretly videotape the mechanics screwing over the customer? This site is kind of like that...except smarter and more about how not to be screwed over.
Gametap: In the 'Where Were You My Whole Life' comes this gem of a site. For a small price, you can play about 800 games; some new, some old, some classic. It's like a full library of games at your fingertips without the pesky illegal downloading business.
This American Life: A nice light podcast about, well, life. Sounds frou frou, I know, but its appeal to the zeitgeist of the everyday man is instant. Awesome - I finally used the word zeitgeist. And probably wrong. Anyways, I believe that they're charging for current podcasts, but older ones can be streamed for free. And given that there's nearly 3 years of archives, I'm sure you'll find a few to keep you busy.
Press the Action Button: I rarely read videogame reviews anymore (except my own on ...PLUG PLUG), but I've always loved reading bad ones. Here, they attack a few gaming legends and usually with good cause. Are they just trying to be hip and counter-culture? Maybe. Do they ramble a bit? Maybe. Are they the most interesting reviews to read lately? Definitely.
Funny or Die: Like digg for comedy sketches. Current favorites include anything by 'Human Giant' and Will Ferrill's (no, I'm not going to bother spellchecking that) 'Landlord'.
Kitty Cannon: Still the game of choice for NewCap radio's crack creative team. Also how we determine who gets water.

And so...that's that. Have fun and let them know who sent you.

Friday, May 11, 2007

TV Shopping

I know, I know - in a world of global warming, prolonge wars, rampant racism and worldwide famine, the least of my worries should be television shopping.
But here we are.
I remember about 6 years ago getting the 'new TV' itch, counting up my hard earned Roger's Video money and purchasing a 27" behemoth. At that time, my only options were base color, size and whether or not I wanted to include some crappy factory reject VCR.
Easy. Simple. Cheap.
Now - not so much.
A funny thing happens when you have to spend a lot of money in a short amount of get used it. So - after moving expenses, plane tickets and new clothes I've now got a new tv on the brain and about a zillion or so options to wade through.
Plasma, LCD, Projection, DLP, LLD, Super VCD, LOL, Mononeucleotic HD Scan Progressive Plexi-form Neuromax 3000, etc.
Try asking a best buy employee which one is best and, low and behold, it's the $1800 model they just got in last week. Lo and behold - I don't have 1800 to spend and no one has yet to convince me that I SHOULD spend nearly 2 grand on a product most admit WILL FAIL in 5 years.
Seriously, its like the designed each new tv with one feature that will blow out, fade or rip in 5 years time. Damn you consumers! Damn you for buying into this and making my enjoyment of big screen videogaming that much more expensive and complicated.
Add on the fact that I'll have to subscribe to an HD service,purchase HD cables and replace my internal organs with HD-ready parts, what was once a simple quest for a bigger picture has become and entire living room renovation.
Though I guess if this was the only thing I could think to bitch about, things could be a lot worse.
In the meantime - opinions? Suggestions? Donations?

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Meatwad's Opus

Presenting the world premier of Meatwad's first publishing.

aka: We put her on my laptop keyboard and below is what turned out:


From what I can gather, she hit the 'paste' button which, unless I don't know my shortcuts, required a stretch of one leg on Control and a paw on V.

Also - if you look closley, it looks like she's typed 'A Neeeeewww Carrrr!" which would suggest that she's been chanelling bob barker or she's vaguely referencing the need to be spayed or neutered.

Or I could be reading too much into this.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

HOLY CRAP - An Entry!

Is what I assume you're saying. If, of course, you're still reading this.
Normally, I'd shy away from journal-esque blogging, but I feel I should at least try to explain my absense.

It pretty much comes down to cold cuts and landlords.

A few weeks back, MJ and I decided on homemade subs for dinner. We bought a pack of cold cuts and had ourselves a regular old sub party (not one of those trendy modern ones). Looking back, I think it was the turkey that had me spewing liquids from every opening in my body for three straight days. I can't be certain, and it could have even been some freak strain of ebola, but the turkey was the only thing I ate and she didn't so my brilliant powers of deduction came to this conclusion.

I don't remember much of those few days. I remember the hospital and watching home reno shows on TLC. I also remember MJ taking care of me. And, oh yeah, the vomitting.

I've since recovered following a couple weeks of quesy stomachs and weird rashes. Too much information?

As for the 'landlord' thing - our ex-apartment owners decided to hop on board the condo train and sell our places. We had a little while to find something, but we didn't want to compete for that elusize 0.0007% vacancy rate in Red Deer so we promptly pounded down the doors of anyone still renting.

Luckily, we found something and we're living there now. And hence...the food poisoning and move drained any sanity and desire to blog from my poor drug ravaged body.

Cool? I'm sorry. Do you forgive me?