REVIEW: Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (Campy Fun Horror Movie)

It's Halloween.

So what better time to review a great horror film I saw last weekend on Netflix.

It is called "Tucker and Dale vs. Evil." The only criticism I have of this film is that there isn't any actual evil in the movie. Well, there sort of is at the end, but it is underemphasized in favor of a campy plot that is a comedy of extremely gory errors that happens when some college kids cross paths with some rednecks, all of whom are just trying to mind their own business up in the woods.

But when rednecks Tucker and Dale get out the shovels, chainsaw, and a woodchipper, to do a little harmless beautification of their newly purchased fishing cabin, things start to go insane.

The movie was non-stop action and didn't dwell too long on the cliches of other horror films. In a weird way, it is kind of a romance (when one of the rednecks somehow enchants one of the college girls).

It is what it is. Don't take my word for it. Netflix gave it 4.5/5 stars. That's part of the reason I chose to watch it, while I was up in Osh Kosh last weekend for a little pre-Halloween celebrating.

When I was up in OK for the Midwest Indie Horror Film Fest on Saturday October 6th, I saw a couple of other great horror films. One was called "Collapse," and I am not sure it is released yet. It was made in Iowa and involves some bigger named actors. I can't find it on Amazon or Netflix, so I am not sure why. It's kind of a zombie film but it has an incredbile twist at the end.

And of course, there was "A Cadaver Christmas," a great campy gory indie horror flick, that is at once a Halloween and a Christmas movie that can be enjoyed by the whole family (if they are into gore).

REVIEW: Colgate Wave Comfort Fit Toothbrush

I never in my wildest dreams thought I would endorse a toothbrush.

I needed to replace my old toothbrush recently, so I grabbed one out of the bathroom drawer that the dentist had given me after a checkup and cleaning a long time ago.

It was a Colgate “Wave” Comfort Fit toothbrush, according to the packaging. This thing fits my teeth like a charm. It’s not too hard but not too soft, so the medium bristles are just right. The size and shape are also perfect for shaping to my teeth and covering a decent amount of surface area.

It grips in my hand beautifully too. I have to remember to get this make and model of toothbrush the next time I need one. This toothbrush makes me look forward to brushing my teeth, and that’s a strange new feeling.

F-ing F-ers

The WI Highway Patrol is seriously on my shitlist right now and fully justifiably so. Total traffic redirection fail.

So, I am driving back from Osh Kosh (begosh) after a fun weekend of Halloween celebs and when I get to Rosendale, a cop has Hwy 26 closed off and is directing traffic to turn left. We can assume that was the best detour to get us wayward motorists around whatever catastrophe was unfolding a presumably SHORT distance down Hwy 26. I was willing to forgive the detour as the good intentions of law enforcement, even though I was remarkably frustrated that, after that first left turn, none of the other turns of the detour were marked or manned. I know state coffers are running a little thin, but it is unethical and immoral to ask drivers to follow the other lemming drivers who have no idea where they are going either. Blind leading blind.

But then, once we all found our way back to 26 farther down and were heading south again, there was another cop redirecting us once again, rendering the efforts of the first cop completely useless and unnecessary. Fail.

I am sure there is some lame explanation for such a massive breakdown in logic and reason, but I reject it out of hand because of the weak sauce implementation. I have got rocking to do tonight and that trumps all. Just go clear the golddang road and let's get on with it.

A World of Pain

I don't especially care if people tailgate me. It doesn't make a lot of sense to me because it's not going to change anything. Unless I am feeling remarkably ornery, I am not going to slow down that much, maybe a couple of mph tops. And I am certainly not going to speed up, in no small measure because I refuse to contribute to the ridiculously over inflated coffers of law enforcement, which by the way is a misnomer. And I am not going to magically vanish into some rift in the fabric of time/space manifested by the close proximity of your high speed hunk of metal to mine.

But if you cross the line and flash your brights at me, when I am traveling at a speed amply above the posted speed limit, you will find yourself in a world of pain.

First, I will slow to 1 mph below the speed limit every time it is impossible to pass me, which you could have done in the first place without penalty. Then I will spend the rest of the time speeding up and slowing down as seemingly randomly as I can.

You have been warned.

Corporate Mainstream Media

There is an easy test to determine if mainstream media is progressive- or conservative-biased.

Stop watching it.

If your thinking and beliefs begin to drift in a progressive direction, it's probably because the corporate mainstream media is conservatively slanted, and without those social cues to guide you on what is important news, your mind will need to seek out other cues.

Conversely, if your thinking and beliefs begin to drift in a conservative direction in the absence of mass media cues, this suggests the media is more progressive, or "liberal," to use an archaic term.

Most people when asked will say they are not influenced by mass media. This must be why advertisers spend billions on persuasive messages and broadcast them in the context of mainstream media news programs.

Humans are social animals. Our thoughts and behaviors are in part determined by social cues from other humans. In the absence of social interaction, those cues come from the media that is consumed.

It is well known that interpersonal communication is the most persuasive. When messages come from people around you, especially people you trust, they have more impact on you.

The media is a proxy for the collective mass mind. That is why it is called mass media. The social cues it gives help people determine what are important issues.

Gay rights? Abortion? Immigration? The economy? Extrajudicial killing? Tax fraud? Banking fraud?

Many topics that don't get covered are out of sight, out of mind.

Nuclear I Told You So...

As it turns out, the Fukishima nuclear disaster following Japan's tsunami was powers of magnitude worse than even scientists believed, much less the corporate media. I don't want to say I told you so, but I did.

When I was a kid growing up in New York, the 3-Mile Island nuclear accident happened in Pennsylvania. That too was under reported and the dangers downplayed. However, my insightful mom made me and my sister take iodine supplements to protect us from radioactive iodine in the air, soil, and water.

I don't know if it helped us or not. But because of that lesson learned growing up, when the Fukishima thing happened, I immediately bought a natural iodine supplement (kelp) and started taking it.

Most experts still say no radiation reached the west coast of the United States. But never believe corporate media to report the truth. Use common sense. A lot of debris washed up on the west coast. If debris can wash up, what else can? Are water supplies affected? Air? Sand?

Natural iodine from kelp is cheap and harmless. Is it worth the small investment to protect yourself from possible thyroid cancer down the road? I can't answer that. Only you can.

The VALUE Solution

There is far too much wrong with the world to solve all the problems with reactionary solutions.

We need visionary solutions, and there is a really simple one that can do a lot.

As people, we need to start focusing on VALUE rather than money.

You don't need to know what this means for action, but it is not hard to understand the concept, and once you do, action will naturally follow.

Simply put, money does not create value.

Value creates money.

The order is important but the key thing to remember is that VALUE is the key. Money is not a substitute for value, although it usually flows to where the value is.

But if you assume money is a proxy for value, that is destructive. That is where America is now and we need to get back to values if we want to save ourselves.

This is very pertinent in the debate over giving tax breaks to the rich in hopes they will take the money and create value. They won't. It doesn't work that way. Money does not create value. Value creates money.

I Try

My workplace is deteriorating. That is to say, the quality of the work being produced here seems to be on a downward spiral, unable even to achieve the level of mediocrity our clients have come to expect. The culprit is of course dirt poor leadership from upper management. There are a whole slew of people that need to be cut loose and in so doing the quality of output here would skyrocket. Although the quantity of output would temporarily decrease, the higher quality would more than compensate. Right now, the low quality detracts from the small percentage of quality output being generated. Actually, a lot could change if upper management itself got the hell out of the way.

Medicare and Social Security

I'd like for someone to explain exactly how Medicare and SS contribute to the deficit. They are funded by the Medicare and SS taxes of working people, independent of the income taxes that pay into the general treasury. Not only that but at least for the immediate future, these pots are well funded. They have a surplus at present and in fact the general treasury is borrowing FROM MC and SS, leaving IOUs. Regardless of what might happen to these funds in 25 or 50 years, it is unfathomable to me that these could have any impact on balancing the budget today, since they are liquid and independently funded from the general treasury. In fact, taking them away would actually hurt the deficit due to the cross fund borrowing mentioned earlier. Somebody explain. Now!

Every Election You Got One Thing No One Can Tell You What To Do With

Every election, you are given ONE VOTE to spend however you like, assuming of course you are legally registered to vote. Now there are a lot of people who would like to disenfranchise you of your vote. But I don't want to discuss that here. Let's assume you have all your ducks in a row and can go vote on election day.

How are you going to spend that one precious vote? It's not like your one vote is going to swing any elections. If the election was that close, they'd have to do a recount anyway. So the way I figure it, you have a few options.

It's your vote. You can do with it what you please.

1. You could NOT vote. This is truly "throwing away" your vote. I'll get into voting for third parties in a minute. You can decide not to vote, and then your one vote is wasted. It has no value of any kind. It is nullified until the next election. I can totally understand the desire not to vote, given the crappy choices available. If that's what you decide to do, no one can hold that against you. It's your vote.

2. You could vote for one of the two mainstream candidates, Obama or Mittens. These are the choices the corporate mass media tells us are the only two viable choices. Maybe you think so too. In that case, go vote for one of them. At least you are not flushing your vote down the toilet like you would be in scenario #1. They are the conventional mainstream pop culture choices, and like many pop culture icons, they sell out often and follow the polls.

3. You could spend your one vote on a third party candidate. Many people mistakenly think this scenario is the same as "throwing away your vote." But that's NOT voting. And as I said above, your one vote isn't going to swing any elections. You don't have any say over anyone else's vote, only yours. And what you do with yours has no bearing on what others will do with theirs, except for the fact that if you vote for the mainstream candidates, you are just kind of following the herd over the cliff, via conventional wisdom. But you can spend your vote however you want. The mainstream candidates ASSUME one of them owns your vote. Do they? The conventional wisdom says yes. But don't they have to EARN your vote. If you really like a third party candidate like Green Jill Stein or Independent Ron Paul, why not make this bargain with the mainstream candidates: Adopt some of the third party platforms I like, or don't ASSUME you will get my vote. It has to be earned. Now, you might still want to vote for one of the two mainstream candidates so you can be on the "winning" team. That's peer pressure. But are you really winning if you only have two choices and the "winner" is really just a loser to one degree or another?

I heard Jill Stein talk on Wisconsin Public Radio. She is the Green Party candidate. She said everything I always want Obama to say, but he never does. Like jailing criminal bankers and oil company crooks that pollute and price fix. She points out that the middle class should not have to accept AUSTERITY while the rich are basically bathing in Benjamins (rolling in cash).

Look at the stock market and the banks. There is NO shared sacrifice there. The stock markets are doing great. So why is the middle class suffering? Where are these so-called "job creators" that we were told we would see if we just gave the rich MORE tax breaks.

So, I say to President Obama this: Earn my vote. Be a true progressive and take action against the crooks. I realize it is too late to expect this before this coming election. But there is a lot he could say and do between now and then that might take my one vote away from Jill Stein (who I currently plan to vote for) and give it to Obama. It's a real long shot. But he can't just have my vote. He has to earn it. It is the one thing I own that no one can buy or take away. It's precious and valuable and I am not going to spend it on a load of rhetoric. I am going to be very discerning on where I spend my vote.

Let's face it, Obama should crush Mittens in this election. Obama is intelligent and he has values. Unfortunately, he has sold out to corporate America. Not quite as badly as Mittens has, but he has. It's the way the system is rigged. Elections cost money. But I believe you can foster an economy built on moral and ethical companies that care about building America, not ones who want to fleece it.

If Obama can't beat Mittens, my one vote is not going to change that. It's not possible. The same goes for if he beats Mittens. My one vote may not matter to either candidate.

But it's mine and it matters to me.

Poor Lance Armstrong

I feel bad for Lance Armstrong. I am not going to take a stand one way or the other on doping. Maybe he did and maybe he didn't. I sat next to a pro bicycle racer on a plane once who told me it was impossible to be in the top 10 cyclists without doping. This guy on the plane said he did not dope and the best he could ever hope for was to come in 4th or 5th against the dopers in a race. And that was the best he could ever hope to do. He was OK with that.

So that's what I know. Annd that's that.

But Lance Armstrong is still a visionary leader and figurehead when it comes to the fight against cancer. I don't think he should have to step down from his Livestrong role. He beat cancer, which is all the more amazing if he was doping himself up with toxic chemicals to bicycle race.

As for Nike taking away its endorsement of Armstrong, I say, "Honey Badger don't give a shit." But for Nike to take the moral high ground when they profit from overseas sweatshops and migrant labor is a bit of a stretch.

I think Armstrong should come clean on his doping, if he did it. Honesty is the best policy. But either way, I think he is a decent guy and shouldn't be a sacrificial lamb.

Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones and let he or she who is without sin throw the first stone.

That's my take and I am sticking to it.

Honey Badger Don't Give a @#$%

There was (and still is, I guess) a viral video on the Internet about the Honey Badger, with a hilarious voice over about the aggressively carefree nature of this beast. I’ll embed the video below this post. It is worth watching. The narrator says at one point, “The Honey Badger don’t give a @#$%!”

At work, I am a lot like the honey badger, just not giving a @#$%.

I have one coworker in particular who passive aggressively complicates every task, throwing up roadblocks and trying to pass the buck. Everyone recognizes this, but at the slightest criticism he becomes defensive to the point of paranoia, blames everyone else, and spews venom (much like the cobra that appears in the honey badger video).

A guy would be within his rights to get mad at this coworker and tell him to @#$% the @#$% off. But, I don’t do that. I recognize that he is a bitter angry person. There is no sense in 2 of us being that way. I don’t know why he is so mean spirited. But you know what…

“Honey Badger don’t give a @#$%!”

That’s a good attitude for working with dangerous people.


Jill Stein Says Everything I Want Obama to Say, But He Never Does. So Guess What...

On Wisconsin Public Radio today, they interviewed the Green Party candidate for President, Jill Stein. Who else does that? She said everything I want Obama to say, but he never does. So guess what...@#$% it, I am voting Green.

No more austerity for us working peeps while the bankers and oil billionaires are bathing in Benjamins.

I totally don't care who you vote for, if you want to stick with the winning "losers." But not me.

A good day to you.

Workspace Madness

I have noticed a high correlation between the presence of upper management and a complete breakdown of mental faculties amongst my coworkers. It is as if the presence of managers flips a retardation switch in their minds.

This is yet another reason why management sucks and is totally useless to the organization. When the managers are away, my coworkers behave like normal intelligent and competent human beings, who actually do work and accomplish things. But as soon as the managers return, they lose all ability to be self directed and instead just sit in their cubes mumbling, drooling, and soiling themselves.

Quite pathetic.

The Government Won't Save Us (But Neither Will Corporate America)

If you want to protect the environment and save the earth, you need to take responsibility for your own chunk of the cosmos and do your part. The government and corporate America will not save us, and even if they could, they would have to do it by asking YOU to change your fossil fuel addicted lifstyle.

So just take the iniative and change it yourself. Take personal responsibility and make changes that shrink your ecological footprint. What are you waiting for, someone else to save the day? Not going to happen. Why would you put a government or corporate bureaucracy in charge of that? But more importantly, why would you expect them to do anything other than asking YOU to do your part. That's the bottom line.

Perhaps you could argue that the government or corporate America could do it by acting on a mass societal scale, but the end result is the same. You have to change before society can change. So just change. Buy a bike and get a fuel efficient car; drive it less. Weatherize your house and lower the heat/AC. Buy foods locally and minimize packaging and processing. If you can, go vegetarian, which is a power of magnitude less harmful to the environment than eating meat. You don't have to be a strict vegetarian, but just trying to eat about half the meat you currently eat will go a long way. Avoid foods with corn and soybeans when possible. The prices of such foods are dependent on the environment and they cause a death spiral for the environment.

Saving the earth is a 3 step process.

1. Education.

2. Conservation.

3. Alternative Energies.

Note that alternative energy technology comes last. These technologies are not sufficient to meet our energy needs unless we lower those needs, even though everyone talks about it first to avoid having to talk about the hard one, conservation. Education allows us to make the best choices for doing so and for deciding on what alternative energies are best. Also, we need to educate more scientists who can find ways to make conservation and alternative energies cheaper and easier to do. Conservation comes before alternatives, because lowering demand is the only way these technologies will work.

Education is not enough though. Sitting on FACEBOOK and trying to educate people is not enough. Act. Get out there and do something.

Mittens' Diabolical Plan for Earth

I didn't watch the debate between President Obama and Wannabe President "Mittens" Romney.

I have already decided to vote for Obama because of Mittens' diabolical plan for complete destruction of the planet.

You can argue that THIS is a piece of fabricated left wing journalism:

Go ahead.

But if you don't make that argument, and agree to the accuracy of it, then you are an friggin' idiot to vote for Mittens.

There is some good info on the world oil market here that has nothing to do with Mittens at all. Just facts of the market from which you can use common sense to determine Mittens has no idea what he is talking about.