Sunday, August 28, 2005

Divorce and Cancer are Sad Themes

Sometimes in your life do you notice that there seem to be themes for a while? Times when certain subjects seem to keep coming up?

I remember when my Nanny passed away because of cancer back in 2000 and for a while it seemed like everything was about cancer. Next thing I knew cancer took a very close family friend. Then my Mother-in-law finds out she has cancer but praise God after surgery and cancer treatment it all seems to be gone now. At that point in my life I was really noticing how many people out there are affected by it. My ears perked up whenever I heard the word cancer and I started to realize how much of an impact cancer has on everyone’s life. Today I’m much more aware of it but not like I was when it was directly affecting my life. Thankfully that theme is over for now.

How about a happier theme? Maybe this one is more ‘a time of life’ type of theme? One day you find out a good friend or relative is pregnant then all of a sudden it seems like you get a call every other week about someone else who is pregnant and babies are popping out everywhere. Or at least that’s what it seems like. My son Jonah was born in June 04 then my nephew in November 04 then another nephew January 05. See what I’m talking about!

Well anyway, I feel like I’m in one of those times right now. I’ve been in this theme before. I guess it’s one of those recurring themes. I met a new friend recently who must have been about my age and she shared with me that her and her ex got a divorce this winter after five years of marriage! Thankfully there were no children involved. Then I was talking to my wife who was on a MOPS retreat this weekend where she learned of another couple that seemed to have everything going for them but can’t hold their relationship together. This time they do have kids! Every time I hear about people about to divorce or who are going through a divorce or who have had a divorce I feel like I get this ache inside. It’s like God allows me to feel just a glimpse of their pain. I hate it!

I could go on with example after example as I’m sure you are thinking right now of someone you know who has gone through this. I’m not sure I really have a point to this blog except to say that it sucks when people get divorced. Like you didn’t already know that. It sucks for the couple that made promises to each other and it sucks for the kids who once had two parents that promised to be together forever to raise them. If you are one of these kids you should check out this blog. Author and friend Jen Abbas wrote a book just for you called Generation Ex.

To try and make a point to this blog other than ‘sometimes life sucks’ may I make a suggestion? Or offer a challenge? (My wife did a blog on what I’m about to say so check it out. She’s smarter than me.) If you have been asked to stand for someone in their wedding EVER in your life that means you need to hold the person who asked you accountable to keeping their marriage vows. So how about this? Write down the name or names of those people and either call them today or make a definite plan to call them soon and catch up and specifically ask them how their marriage is doing. They WILL appreciate you asking, even if you are not married. It’s always nice to know that someone is thinking about you and cares for you.

Until next post . . .



Thursday, August 25, 2005

A Movie Review

Well Kat, I’m taking you up on your suggestion so here is a review of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. If you haven’t read the book and/or don’t know the story I am giving away a few things in this review so be warned.

Well I didn’t see the first Charlie so I don’t have that to compare this one too so you should get a completely unbiased report here.

I think it was great that I read the book shortly before watching the movie. Everything was still pretty fresh in my mind from the book so any differences were pretty obvious right away. And there were some differences!

The Bucket family was perfect. The people looked almost exactly as I had pictured them, especially Charlie and his Grandpa Joe. Their house looked great too complete with a door that didn’t quite open right. They had Charlie sleeping upstairs though which was a slight difference than the book. All of the other children were reproduced quite well too. Augustus Gloop was likely my favorite. The very last thing he says in the movie was one of my favorite quotes. “But I taste so good Mama.” Mike Teavee was likely my least favorite. And the fact that he was a violent video game playing gun-slinging kid from Denver didn’t sit well with me. Littleton is practically a suburb of Denver, which I’m sure, is no coincidence for Burton.

The town where the Buckets lived and where the factory was located looked great. This whole movie was obviously Tim Burton, with lots of strange angles on buildings and very saturated color everywhere. It almost had a cartoon quality to it.

I love watching Johnny Depp. He cracks me up and creates really cool characters. His interpretation of Willy Wonka wasn’t quite what I would have suggested and seemed to stray a bit from Dahl’s description. Wonka sort of had a Michael Jackson quality to him in looks. The thin white face and skinny body that is. He also spoke kind of effeminately which didn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. Sure Wonka is eccentric but eccentric doesn’t automatically tie in with effeminate does it? All that said I still enjoyed Depp’s version. After all it was Burton’s version of the story so he’s allowed to do what he wants.

There were also some story changes. Wonka kept having flashbacks to his childhood and the bad experiences he had with his overbearing dentist father who thought candy was evil. This changed the ending slightly too which I won’t give away. None of the changes took away from the story at all. I could totally see why Burton added what he did. The book ends great but doesn’t have the kind of ending a movie made in Hollywood would have which is what Burton gave it.

The Oompa Loompas were interesting. Burton used one guy’s face and made all of the Oompa Loompas look like him. It was kind of amusing but I don’t think it was worth all of the work they would have needed to do to do that. They didn’t really fit into my mental picture of what or who the Oompa Loompas were. Their songs were pretty interesting. Danny Elfman outdid himself. The songs that they sang after each child destroyed themselves were all quite involved. There was singing and dancing and lights. It was all very organized. There was a disco-ish song, a Queen-type song and a couple of other theme based songs. Elfman used Dahl’s lyrics but created new music for everything.

All in all it was an enjoyable movie, very true to the book. My favorite part was when they first walk into the factory. That looked exactly like I pictured it. If you are a big fan of the book go ahead and shell out the big bucks for the theatre otherwise it’ll be a great rental. Maybe even read the book first. Any library should have it and it’s a pretty quick read.



Thursday, August 18, 2005

Chocolate Angel Money

Since I last blogged I’ve finished reading two books.

In preparation for the movie I thought it would be good to revisit Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It worked out great. I had a flight delay on my way to Nashville last week and managed to polish it off between my first flight and waiting for my second flight. I’ve mentioned before how much I like Roald Dahl’s writing so I won’t go into that but I can’t wait to see how they have translated Dahl’s words into a script and sets. I’m especially looking forward to seeing Johnny Depp play a character that Roald Dahl created. I’m not sure what it is I like best about his books but I feel like he mixes humour, nastyness and a sense of wonder and justice into almost all of his books. I wish he had written more books for adults.

I also finished Angels and Demons, which is Dan Brown’s precursor to The DaVinci Code. It was another one of those books that you don’t want to put down. I love reading those. The thing I like about Dan Brown’s writing is that he makes you believe everything he writes is truth. That’s quite an ability. This is why the DaVinci Code has stirred up so much trouble. Everyone who reads it starts wondering if what he is saying is true because he writes so convincingly. I enjoy his characters and depth of story too. I’d like to say I had an idea of how it would end but what I thought was going to happen was just what he wanted me to think. I won’t give anything away but check it out. In my buddy Dave’s words it’s also not heretical like the DaVinci Code was.

I’m currently reading a course called “No Money Down” by Carleton Sheets. It teaches you how to become a real estate investor. I’m not interested in becoming a real estate investor at this point but I would like to own my own home one day. It has been an interesting read so far especially coming from the background of Dave Ramsey and Howard Dayton. These guys are anti debt where as the course I’m reading gives about 20 or more different ways of getting a mortgage and not paying any money down. So there is some difference there. It’s always good to get both sides I guess.

Check out my wife’s blog to see what’s been going on with my family lately. We have been ill. My son Jonah looks pretty pathetic in the pictures she has posted. It was a sad time. We’re all better now though!

Anyway, until next time . . .



Tuesday, August 02, 2005

myblogsite personell, help!

I love finding things that are different. I love doing things that are different. I'm very much about being my own person just like everyone else.

This is why I chose "myblogsite" instead of blogger or typepad or something else. The only issue is I will type this and click on post and it won't show up just like the last two posts I did. I find this very disappointing as I have liked this place for blogging otherwise. The ads are a bit annoying sometimes but I can deal with that. I can even deal with the occasional technical difficulty but this has lasted for about a week now.

If you are reading this I'm surprised because that means the site is working now and I've just written this for the benefit of myself and some blogsite employee who maybe just fixed it for us. So I guess I'll be posting again soon seeing as you can actually keep current with me now.




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