Sunday, August 26, 2012

Chain Restaurants, IMO

In my teen years, quite some decades ago, both chain restaurants such as Denny's and fast food such as Kentucky Fried Chicken opened in our town. In the following decades they were looked upon as inferior dining as people preferred the Mom and Pop and individual fine dining restaurants. While driving cross country and finding these unpredictable my feelings about chain food restaurants began to change. Applebees was always Applebees and breakfast, lunch and dinner chains were consistent in menu and in quality control in whatever city we came to rest.

In the August issue of The New Yorker, Atul Gawande suggests in an article titled Big Med that perhaps health care can apply the concepts of a quality chain restaurant, The Cheese Factory, to provide quality and consistency to hospitals and clinics.

"Big chains thrive because they provide goods and services of greater variety, better quality, and lower cost than would otherwise be available."

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Canine Teamwork

What is it??
You got it?
Me, me, me
My turn now!
I'll get it from here!

Got it surrounded now!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Summer Cycle

                                                                 Summer Cycle

                                                                  Humid heavy air
                                                           Oppressive, still and close
                                                             Waiting for monsoons

                                                                 Rainy afternoons
                                                    Sky dark, broken by lightening
                                                             Sound of thunder near

                                                             Bright rainbow arches
                                                    Earth and trees damp with moisture
                                                          Completes summer cycle

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Buddy by the Sea

Buddy has been to the Sea of Cortez and to the Atlantic on the coast of Maine.
He loves the water. Any water.  From his kiddie pool, to the lakes and creeks and from sea to shining sea. He particularly liked Rocky Point, Mexico because of the length of the tide and the other dogs.
I wrote this poem to match this photo a number of years ago. He is eleven now and I sure would like to get him back to the seashore sometime.

the Sea
and Run Free

He Ran
He swam
He dug holes
He rolled in stinky stuff

And when he got in at night
We looked at each other and said
"that’s about enough".

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Hope Springs - Movie Review

I was not prepared to like this movie. A movie about restarting a marriage in a midlife rut might hit too close to home. However I really liked it. Thinking it was a 'chic flic' I was surprised to see so many couples attending. No way would my SI every go.  Theater was filled with mostly middle aged folks, all laughing or crying at appropriate times.

Great casting. Meryl Streep is truly a chameleon, and in this movie one looses the fact you are watching Meryl but are watching Kay, a middle aged woman who would rather be alone than lonely. Tommy Lee Jones (Arnold) does not play a romantic but rather an unlikable husband that is buried in the mundane of everyday. Adding to these two is Steve Carrell as a marriage/sex counselor. He is 100% believable in this role and adds sincerity to this common problem made into an entertaining movie.

Good 3***'s

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Beasts of the Southern Wild - Movie Review

Since my guilty pleasure is reading Entertainment Weekly, I often read about and get interested in a movie and wait for it to come. Such it was with "Beasts of the Southern Wild".

It is clearly a favorite with the critics =getting A+. 4* etc.
I have been told "you like everything" but apparently not. And I usually like the 'arty' films but not this one. Perhaps the camera technique distracted too much.

This is the story of a young 6 year old girl named Hushpuppy played by Quvenzhane Wallis. This is a remarkable performance of a young girl and a ragtag group of people who live in the "Bathtub", a group of islands on the wrong side of a levee in the Gulf of Mexico. This group of people are as far away from what we know as civilization than any group I have seen in film. They drink hard and support each other in hard times after the storms and the attempts by officials to 'rescue' them. They live in derelict shacks crowded with junk and animals that serve as pets and food. Hushpuppy lives with her father who tries but fails to take care of his young daughter.

As much as I admired the performance of the young actress, I did not like this movie. The overcrowded set and poverty got to me. The story was too filled with what I think were philosophical statements that only were confusing.  Most significantly I really disliked the photography technique.

If you know me or read my blog reviews you know that I dislike the unsteady and extreme close-up style of filming that is so popular these days. In addition to this, the director added a new technique of -in focus, out of focus, in focus out of focus filming that was very unsettling.

I think this is going to be a like or leave it movie. IMO- leave it.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Salt River Canyon

The Salt River and its deep canyon is followed and crossed when driving from Globe, Az to Pine Top.
All though this drive can be fearful at times it is rewarded with great beauty.

All though this drive can be fearful at times it is graced with great beauty.