Saturday, November 26, 2005

Pat Morita

Pat Morita

Ever seen The Karate Kid? Me too. I saw it in Japan in 1985 while as an exchange student. To tell you the truth, I didn't buy Pat Morita in the role of Mr. Miyagi for the first half of the movie. He was still Arnold from Happy Days to me.

After I returned home he did a Pizza Hut commercial. I remember it to this day, even though I have only seen it one time: Morita has a slice of pizza in one hand, a pair of chopsticks in the other. He looks at the pizza, then the chopsticks. He tosses the chopsticks over his shoulder with a muttered, "Dame da, kore wa," and takes a bite. I thought it was hilarious. My parents, less so.

Sayonara, Morita-san. The world is a darker place without you.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Last week, I bought myself a present.

Yes, I do that a lot.

Where was I? Oh yeah! I bought Gun for the PS2. I had seen the special on G4/TechTV and was impressed.

Now that I've played it awhile, all I can say is: WOW!

This is a great game! It has a couple of minor drawbacks, though. First, on horseback, everybody's horse is faster than yours and never tires. If you use the "Spur" button too long, your horse will die. And there are several chase segments. I've decided that you have to ignore the big red warning that reads: You are riding your horse too hard!" if you want to play the game.

Second, they hired an award winning writer to write the story. So this thing is full of cut scenes. I'm only on the second part of the game, I've spent almost as much time watching cut scenes to advance the story as I have playing the game.

All that being said, I love "Gun." Put it on your Christmas list.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

This Thanksgiving, take time to enjoy yourselves before you rush out into that Black Friday madness. Once you get into full consumer mode ("Add that to the basket. Damn the credit card balance!") it's hard to stop. Fortunately, I have to work. Once I park at 7 am, I ain't moving until I get off at 6 pm. Otherwise, I lose my parking space. So I am observing Buy Nothing Day. I won't be as proactive as Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping, but I will be keeping my money in my pocket.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

About time!

The Texas Attorney General has sued Sony for Spyware violations. It's about time that the law treats corporate hackers the same way they treated Kevin Mitnick.

The RIAA and its funders have been treating consumers like criminials for a few years. All we did was copy a few songs. What Sony is doing is putting a backdoor on any computer that uses their "software." That backdoor could allow them, or anyone they hire, to spy on their customers. Let me repeat that: SPY ON THEIR CUSTOMERS! And that's just the company we know about. What about the others?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Oh my goodness! Can it really have been that long ago? Almost 25 years ago, a friend of mine, who lived in Austin, and I tried to collaborate on a comic book called "The Red Baron." We had worked out a story and were starting on character designs when we lost touch with each other. In other words, we got jobs.

I designed the costume, and sent it to my friend. He sent back this sketch with his refinements.

I loved this sketch. Just looking at it brings back so many good memories.

Monday, November 21, 2005

I don't have a problem with companies making money, but I do have a problem with printer manufacturers.

Printer makers don't make money off their printers. They make money off the ink. Every printer comes with ink. Like any good drug dealer, the first one's free. After that, to replace the ink, you spend half the price, or more, of the printer.

Exactly how much ink is in a printer cartridge? No one is telling. But an HP printer cartridge costs $22 per quarter ounce! That's almost $8000 per gallon! No wonder they don't want you to use third party ink.

Once again, the forces of greed and evil (read conservatives) have oppressed the New Orleans Saints. There was no love in New England, as the Patriots refused to let the Saints score in the closing minutes of the game.

Imagine the sorrow at the Saints' Thanksgiving table. They have lost their home. The rich teams are contributing nothing to help them.

This is a sad time for America.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

O. J. Simpson recently criticized the laws that allowed the relatives of Bonny Lee Bakley to successfully sue Robert Blake.

"I still don't get how anyone can be found not guilty of a murder and then be found responsible for it in any way shape or form," Simpson said in a phone interview from his Florida home. "... If you're found not guilty, how can you be found responsible? I'd love to hear how that's not double jeopardy."

He's right. Simpson, Blake and Michael Jackson were found guilty in their respective court cases. Now Simpson and Blake have been found responsible for the crimes they were accused of, and it probably won't be long until Jackson gets sued. These civil suits find the person responsible for an act the law has already said they didn't do. It's kind of like beating a speeding ticket, and then the municipality sues you for speeding.

I blame this on lawyers. While Simpson paid $33 million, Blake has to pay $30 million. But how much money does the family get and how much do the lawyers get? The family will probably get as much at Netflix customers are going to get. See my previous post.

Can't you feel 'em closin' in, honey
Can't you feel 'em schoolin' around
You got fins to the left, fins to the right
And you're the only girl in town

This works on so many levels, don't it?