Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A very long weekend...

So this was a very busy Victoria Day long weekend for me, and it didn't even involve fireworks.

Friday evening some friends and I attempted to see the new Star Trek film again, this time in IMAX!!!--but the show was already sold out. So we opted for X-Men Origins: Wolverine instead. I'd heard bad and mediocre reviews, and wasn't expecting much, but it wasn't horrible. Not particularly great, but not horrible. Hugh Jackman did a great job with what he had to work with. Liev Schreiber also did a good job with even less to work with. Ryan Reynolds shone as Deadpool for the 5 minutes he had onscreen, even if they took a few liberties with the character. I choose to ignore what they did with him in the climax, and instead hope for an entertaining spin-off flick at some point. (I'm a fan of the "Merc with a Mouth", especially when he's in the hands of a good writer, and I think Ryan Reynolds is well-cast as the wise-cracking ass-kicker.) Gambit was okay, but he could have been removed from the story entirely with no effect (all he really does is get in the way).

The plot itself is pretty dumb: an early scene has a group of mutants, including Wolverine, doing black ops for the US military. They dismantle the private army of an African diamond trader within minutes, just to get the hunk of meteorite he's been using as a paperweight. Really, I think one guy with a suitcase full of $100,000 US could have done the job more easily and with less mess. Ah well, they can't all be Iron Man.

Saturday was a day spent in restaurants. I went for lunch with some friends from my undergrad D&D days whom I only see about twice a year (one of them, who lives in Calgary, was in town for the weekend). Then I went out for a friend's girlfriend's birthday at Ivanka's in downtown Burlington. A very classy, and intimate place. Afterward we hit a Tim Horton's, the only coffee place that was open.

Sunday was a day spent in costume. In the morning some friends and I attended a Promenade and Picnic with the Toronto Steampunk Appreciation Society. We browsed St. Lawrence Market in Toronto for antiques, and I found some interesting pins for my military-style jacket. One Russian dealer had a table full of old Soviet Red Army surplus, so I picked up some goggles and a KGB box-style flashlight. I also found an old Kodak folding camera. I'll post photos soon. The evening was the usual LARP thing.

Monday was a day of labour. I spent much of the morning weeding and mowing my lawn, and discovering the army of mosquitoes that have occupied my backyard fence. I've noticed several spiders have weaved webs all around the outside of my house. Although I almost tore them down, I realized that each web trapped several scores of mosquitoes. Whereupon I calculated that every mosquito the spiders get, is one less in my house. Thus I forged a verbal contract with the arachnids: stay outdoors and you are free to feast on as many mosquitoes as you wish.

Unfortunately, the spiders aren't able to deal with so many of them so I might be forced into drastic measures. Perhaps the use of Raid or some other weapon of mass insect destruction.

In the afternoon, some friends and I went hiking in Christie Lake Conservation Area in Dundas. We spent a lot of time exploring the ruins of Crooks Mill and the dam of Christie Reservoir. I'll put up photos of those soon as well.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

They Fight Crime!

A common TV series pitch--or parody of one--is taking an "odd couple" and placing in them in situations where they solve mysteries and defeat criminals. This trope is called They Fight Crime, and examples include Numb3rs ("He's an FBI agent; he's a math professor. They Fight Crime!") and Blood Ties ("She's a Canadian police detective who is slowly losing her sight. He's a vampire. They fight crime!").

From Jaka, there's this neat meme:

1.) Go to TheyFightCrime! and find a crimefighting pair that makes you swoon.
2.) Go to the Hero Machine and illustrate your duo!
3.) Repeat as necessary or until your mom tells you it's time for bed.

I'll illustrate one I did, but first, guess this famous media property. You'll be surprised who it is--I certainly was! Answer after the images below:

"He's a battle-scarred veteran of the war in Afghanistan! He's a substance-abusing dilettante grad student! They Fight Crime!"

"He's a leather-clad guitar-strumming photographer who believes he can never love again. She's a virginal insomniac bounty hunter who hides her beauty behind a pair of thick-framed spectacles. They fight crime!"
PhotographerBounty Hunter 2

And the odd couple mentioned above?

Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes.