Thursday, August 26, 2010

Paper Plane

I enjoyed this video by Margherita Premuroso and I hope that you all do as well. If you have time to watch, it's less than a minute.

Paper Plane from Margherita Premuroso on Vimeo.

Thursday Traffic | 26 August

Not all traffic is on the road. The largest amount of traffic some of us face is found in the workplace. Projects flying onto your desk so rapidly that you feel like someone just cut in front of you when you were on a roll. Summertime is busy at my job. When you experience lulls in the rush, you start to get a bit used to the relaxed pace. That is until you find yourself on a clogged highway and realize that you are behind schedule. However, that's not the point.

Today, people worldwide woke up (mostly to the sound of some alarm), got dressed, maybe ate breakfast and went on their merrily way to work. It's a never-ending cycle. As you read those last two sentences, approximately eighteen babies were born and they will be ready to do the same thing eighteen years from now. As many other twenty-somethings have mused, what is the point of it all? Why work? Is having a job the only way to live in society?

We work because it is the easiest and most common way to make a profit. You could probably make the same amount of money doing some illegal dealings if you don't like the job market. Yet there are the fortunate few that make a living doing something other than working a normal 9-to-5. However, I think the reason why people work (other than making money) is because working is a way to make something of yourself. Your hard work—or the lack thereof—is a way for you to leave a legacy. So even though working might not be your forte or your favorite thing to do, it has its benefits. Oh, that's another reason some people work, those benefits can be better than your pay.

Hopefully my random musings have given you a few thoughts to mull over. Come back next Thursday for more traffic.

Image via

Author Spotlight | Terry Pratchett

Thanks to my friend, I have been introduced to the imaginative and creatively worded novels of Terry Pratchett. I've started my journey of his Discworld Collection with The Truth. It is the kind of book that throws puns and politics to you all at the same time. There is something for everyone—vampires, werewolves, zombies, people, dwarfs and imps. Oh, did I mention that there is also magic? If you like a good fantasy novel, give Terry Pratchett's extensive library of options a try. You can read his Discworld collection or something more individual—it's all up to you. For more about Terry Pratchett, head over to his site. If you like organization and online orders, check out Barnes & Noble (yes, I shamelessly promote my preferred bookstore of choice).

Photo via extra quick internet search

Eye popping

Illustrator Tiago Hoisel brings life and lots of color to his illustrations. If you have been in need of some eye candy, there is plenty for you to feast upon if you click here. For some more of my favorites, hit the jump.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Thursday Traffic | 12 August

I know, it's been a while since I posted about Thursday traffic, but don't dismay—it's back! I was caught in two storms during the traffic today, once on the way to work and once on the way home. It was the kind of storm that catches you off guard and makes you feel out of place. The sky darkened and a sheet of rain seemed to fall from the sky in an instant. It was during this moment that I thought about how much can change in the blink of an eye.

It seems that when we turn 10 or so, we begin reminiscing and thinking about how our lives have been and start to consider what our lives could be in the future. (wait, was that just me thinking that?) Then, when we become teenagers and start to compare ourselves to whatever else is in the world, we begin to imagine what our lives would have been like "if." We think, what if I had been like this person or what if I knew about that then. It's then that I feel we begin to decide who we really are—our personality becomes more defined and we start to take "control" of our lives.

I put control in quotes because I feel that though we have our own thoughts and preferences, we have very little control over the things outside of them. For example, though someone may hate cigarette smoke, a person can still be smoking near them. In the end, we can decide that we want something, but we might not always have the means or the method to achieve it.

Yet despite storms and other obstacles, I feel that we all have certain dreams that we cannot deny ourselves. Thing we want to accomplish more than anything—a purpose to achieve. So though for a moment today, I looked out of the window of the bus wondering how the weather might affect me. But I still knew that I had a destination I needed to reach and as we live our lives, we are all heading for our places, our destinies.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

So long, farewell, aufwiedersehen, goodbye

First of all, don't freak out, I'm not closing my blog or anything. I just wanted to talk about farewells. I have noticed that my friends differ on how they end telephone conversations with me. One friend was adamant about never saying "goodbye". She would say "see you later" instead even though we haven't met up in a few years. Other friends don't really say anything. The conversation just kind of fizzles into a "well...I'll talk with you later" or "enjoy the rest of your day" kind of deal.

It's not only an issue found in American conversation. In Germany, you can hang up saying "Aufwiederhoren" meaning "hear you later" or "Tshüß" meaning "bye". These distinctions are part of who we are, I think. People who don't happily say "goodbye" might be afraid of losing friends or acquaintances. I'm not sure, but I've noticed it a lot over the past few weeks. How do you react when some says "goodbye" to you? Is it fine? Are you upset? Do you say "goodbye"?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Cartoon Chatter | Tiny Toon Adventures

They're tiny, they're toon-y, they're all a little loony! Yeah, every time they invaded my TV and I was taken in by the poppy, easily-stuck-in-your-head theme song of Tiny Toon Adventures (better known as Tiny Toons), I was a little loony too. Oh what a loon I was. The best and most obvious thing about the show was that it took the famous and popular Warner Bros. characters like Bugs Bunny, Daffy and Porky Pig and turned them into miniature, alternate versions of themselves modeled after the kids of the 90s.

Most episodes were filled with several small skits and usually had one music video involved (these were the glory days of music videos, you know). I still remember "The Name Game" (you can skip to 0:40 if you'd like) and "Particle Man" because they were so comical and funny. Unlike the moral heavy Disney cartoons of the time, WB proved that they didn't always need to beat you over the head with virtues to make a good show.

I'm sure that if it aired now, it wouldn't be as popular as it was then, but truly, Tiny Toons definitely deserves a moment in the limelight because it was a great show. In addition, Sega created a great Tiny Toon Adventures game called Buster's Treasure that I liked playing. But hey, those were the good ol' days of cartoons (said like someone a lot older than myself, I know).

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Movie rant

If you look at the movies that will be released this year (and next year), you will see that several of them are the "film-version" of this book or this old cartoon. I'm getting a little tired of these kinds of movies. It is the new trend that has taken the comic book/superhero movie to the next level. If you look at many of the books on the bestseller list or reminisce about the golden age of cartoons, you will discover that many of them have movies in the works.

Don't get me wrong. I don't hate the film industry for making movies based upon books. This often sparks debates and discussions about the book and the film. However, I'm starting to think that people are losing their imaginations. There are many well-executed "fresh" films that don't rely on a previous author's or artist's creation. I think that newer ideas often challenge the actors more as well. They have to bring a character to life and don't get compared to a descriptive character in a book or even worse, a cartoon!

Yet it seems that whenever a book or cartoon is really good, it will inevitably become a movie. This leads to mistakes like The Last Airbender that disappoint avid followers of the original show because the movie pales in comparison. It ruins some films if they do not choose to follow the book in certain places (like the stark difference in the ending of My Sister's Keeper, which makes the film fizzle where the book riled you up into discussion). Childhood favorites like Scooby-Doo that already had multiple TV movies become live-action films that pit the lovable (but annoying) Scrappy-Doo as the villain. Now the Smurfs and Yogi Bear might be next to join the list of box-office duds.

Like I said before, many film-versions of previous works are very successful. There are some genres (like fairy tales) that are ripe for visual interpretation—Cinderella, is one that I think of that has been remade into very different films (like Disney's Cinderella versus Ever After). Other classics like 1984 and The Giver benefit from the film versions because they allow people to interpret very great works all over again.

I suppose that the point of my rant is that while film-versions of existing works are often visually rich and allow you another media to enjoy a favorite book/show, there is something wonderful about a movie that is perhaps inspired by something, but essentially a fresh idea. People will say that "there is nothing new under the sun," but when you take the time to create something of your own, no matter how much it might resemble something else, it is yours. I hope that filmmakers consider that as they go to the drawing board and start brainstorming their newest masterpieces.


Time has gotten away with me and I completely forgot to tell all of you readers out there that Newfoundjoye won an award! (WOOT WOOT!) I feel honored to receive "A Blog with Substance" award. It was a complete surprise, and it comes with a few rules:

1. Thank the person that gave it to you.
B, you rock! Vielen Dank!

2. Sum up my blogging philosophy, motivation and experience in just five words.
Making my opinion heard worldwide (awesome five word summary, eh?–oops, does this mess it up?)

3. Pass this award on to other blogs that you feel have substance.
There are so many, but I'll keep it to three (in no particular order):
  • Tin Trunk — Really creative; I love the old ads and such.
  • Chris Dixon's blog — Inspiring and informational; I always learn something from his entries.
  • The Average Tween — Hannah's blog is awesome! She's got a great style.

Monday, August 2, 2010

DIY | Sheep's head towel wrap

I believe that I mentioned my love of k-dramas before (Korean dramas for those just joining me). Whenever the actors are in saunas, they usually wrap their towels "sheep's head" style. I decided that I wanted to learn how to do it and looked it up online. If you want a new way to wrap your hair after washing it, give this method a try!

Difficulty: Easy
Time: Quick
Expense: Free/cheap
Materials: A few

NEW to DIY entries beginning August 2010: Difficulty—range is based upon ease [easy, average, tough], how much time you'll need to devote [quick, relatively involved, time-consuming], expense [free, cheap, moderate, expensive] and materials needed [a few, many, a lot]

Hot hot hot!

I think that I will always like hot air balloons. I think it is the fact that I also enjoy regular balloons. Either way, here is a little eye candy for your Monday morning (been a while, hasn't it?).

Images via flickr/Lee M and William Powe Photography

Film Review | Dinner for Schmucks

Have you ever wanted a real "laugh out loud" comedy? Like when you watch a funny show at home and laugh so hard that you end up shaking? Then you'll definitely feel at home when you watch Dinner for Schmucks. I've been all over kid movies this summer, but I'm getting a bit more grown with my choices as fall approaches. If you are in the mood for a truly enjoyable film this summer, I recommend that you head to your local movie theater and pick up a ticket for Dinner with Schmucks. Hit the jump for the full review.

Grade: A-