Saturday, July 22, 2006

Return of Television?

I've become very excited about a couple of new TV series debuting this fall, two of which are about TV shows in and of themselves. First there's "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" with Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford and from the creators of "The West Wing." From the initial teasers played earlier this season, I couldn't tell what it was going to be about. Was it a comedy or a drama? They just didn't play well except to list the cast of stars. Tonight I've seen some updated trailers about the plot and it's style of comedy AND drama. The show definitely looks great, and it's fast paced action behind the scenes looks like an audience favorite. I'm concerned it might be too fast for a half-hour show; but it should be just fine with a full hour. Then there's the Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin comedy "30 Rock", a TV show about the behind-the-scenes antics of an SNL style sketch show. Pretty much anything with Tina Fey is a winner and the trailer is hilarious. This show seems to have something, even if it's a whole lot of nothing. And yet, even a third debut has its hooks on me.

I'll be the first to tell you that my favorite movies tell stories of ordinary people in extraordinary situations. From Shawshank and "The Truman Show" to "The Game" and the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, I'm astounded by tales of the regular guy (or hobbit) finding strength and facing the fears that surround him. Even M. Night Shyamalan's "Unbreakable" grabbed me by the heart and pulled me in; although one could argue that Bruce Willis' character wasn't exactly an ordinary guy, but that was after he discovered his 'powers.' So of course I'd be intrigued by "Heroes." Can you tell I only watch NBC? "Heroes" seems like an Unbreakable story with the number of character to challenge the X-men. Although it does seem like they researched and analyzed the public's love for Wolverine and Superman, disected their strengths, and created individual characters to embody said powers. Not exactly original, but the execution could still be great. As a side note, next time you see the trailer for Ali Larter's character, Nikki, listen to her answering machine. "Hi this is Nikki, leave a message." It sounds exactly like the answering machine from "Swingers" where Jon Favreau's character continues to leave messages after getting cut off. Now that I think about it, all the "Heroes" trailers are told like that original Unbreakable teaser.

Funny how television is becoming more like film. Teasers, trailers, high definition widescreen, event programs, commercial free (for those of you with the right technology), even the cinematography, and visual effects. I guess this makes things easier for actors to move from film to television (Alec Baldwin) and so forth.

May I also say "Kudos" to NBC for airing the pilot of Michael Mann's "Miami Vice" in support of it's film adaptation with Jamie Foxx and Colin Farrell. I have to admit I don't remember actually watching the show, but I saw the pilot tonight, and dare I say it was actually good. Dare I go farther to say that Don Johnson did a decent job. Michael Mann, you haven't made a bad film I've seen, don't fail me now.

Friday, July 21, 2006


Stopping by Old Navy this evening, I couldn't help but be reminded of a certain Seinfeld episode. I can't remember the exact episode, but Kramer joins Jerry and George at the hospital because he thinks he might find some heavy-duty gloves there. Jerry and George are in a hospital room talking with someone getting surgery (may be "The Junior Mint") when Kramer busts through the room with a handful of rubber gloves in his hand. "PAYDIRT," he exclaims!

When we walked into Old Navy and I saw tons of signs proclaiming, "take an EXTRA 50% already clearance marked items", I said to myself the same thing. Five shirts and $17 later, actually it was zero bucks later since Lyndsey's Mom handled the sale (Thank you), I was happy. This included vintage polos, baseball T's, and graphic T's. As a designer I sorted through the graphic T's choosing designs I thought reflected a belief or emotion that I could relate to. As a fan of $4 shirts, I honestly could've cared less. In the end though, it was palm trees, California prints, maroon, blue, and red shades that rounded out the collection. Summer is my favorite season.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Lightning Crashes, a New Father Cries.

Thankfully, everything is ok.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Smiles All Around.

Smiles All Around.
Originally uploaded by jtpuck.

I absolutely love this shot of Lynds and Ian after our anniversary dinner last weekend. Just before my Kahlua Cocoa Coffee slice of cheesecake came to the table, Ian woke up and started making a fuss. Fortunately for the other patrons, The Cheesecake Factory gets so loud you could barely hear him. Grandma Moore took him for a walk outside, then after dessert we took a few pics by the fountain. He still wasn't happy. Poor guy went to the Cheesecake Factory and didn't even get a slice.

Day to Day Operations.

Day to Day Operations.
Originally uploaded by jtpuck.

On a good day, this is how Ian and I hang out. He's not exactly tall enough to get the most out of it, but he likes looking around. It was tough at first trying to maneuver him into the front-pack; but I quickly figured out how much easier it is when he's not crying or hungry. This front-pack helps me accomplish some tasks like, oh, I don't know, typing an email or brushing my teeth or taking Ranger outside. Otherwise I'd be holding Ian in one arm and trying to maneuver said items with the other....not easy folks, not easy. However I don't think this will help when I need to spray paint wine bottles, or use an X-acto to cut cardboard. You can't exactly sit down comfortably while wearing the pack either. Maybe Ian can help me sketch this weekend.

Laundry Day.

Laundry Day.
Originally uploaded by jtpuck.

I mentioned previously that our dryer was on the fritz. It wasn't heating. It was something we should have noticed as our laundry loads began to take 2 and 3 rounds to actually dry. Needless to say, all of our laundry got pretty backed up over two weeks and we needed to do something about it.

I was reminded of a place back at A&M called "Harvey Washbangers." Quite the clever name for a laundromat that doubles as a bar/restaurant, complete with a small reading space and Galaga arcade machine. It was great. You could take a load of laundry and take a load off with a Bud on tap. Just remember the washing machine number and look up to the Press Your Luck scoreboard for your lucky number to turn off and whammo, your laundry was done. Plus on Mondays, they had 20 cent wings. I was hoping to find one of these around town.

The best I could find was a little place called The Laundry Lounge over in Ansley Square. It was a nice place to do laundry with decent prices, great machines, and little reading area. The place was air conditioned, which is rare for laundromats, and good to take Ian along with us. The best thing about laundromats is that you have tons of machines to use. We had 6 washers going at one time, then 5 dryers held everything we had. Add to that the large tables to fold everything up and I'm happy (sad) to say that it made for a nice family outing.

As of now, our dryer is back up and running after Lyndsey's folks ordered a new heating element for us for our second anniversary. What would we do without them.

Thursday, July 6, 2006

Oh, What's Going On.

I didn't realize it had been so long since I last posted. I guess that's because time has been moving faster than a speeding locomotive. Which gets me to the first thing I've been wanting to tell you about. Saw "Superman Returns" last week and was absolutely floored by it. The effects, production design, action sequences, Brandon Routh, and the story were all fantastic. If this is the only movie I see all summer, and it probably will be, that's cool with me. Bryan Singer hasn't made a bad movie yet. It's amazing how much technology has changed since the original film in '76. "Superman Returns" is a blockbuster worth supporting.

Monday marked the first day of my 8th and final quarter at PC. Registration was the smoothest it has ever been, my loan check was ready on time, and it felt really great to be back. First steps are to take an inventory of all my projects, evaluate what's going in my book, what's missing, and then get crackin'. We're talking 18-24 pieces plus 3-4 handheld books. They say it's all about time management, embracing the creative process, multi-tasking, and hiring professionals to take care of some of the dirty work (photography, color correction, printing, the box). I'd say that's quite a bit to keep me busy.

Wednesday marked Lyndsey's first day back at work since having Ian. It was just him and I manning the homebase, oh and Ranger too. The three of us had a rough morning since one of us didn't seem interested in having a mid-morning breakfast. Thursday and today have been better. I figure I can get about 4 hours of classwork done in an 8-5 day, if everything goes well. I'll have to figure out how much everything else will take.

Friday marks the day when Ian's three surviving Great-Grandparents come to town. Lyndsey's folks are driving them over from Texas. They are the coolest GGP's I know. They'll love hanging out with Ian, helping us fix our dryer (a story for another post), and maybe even some homemade tasty treats. I guess I'll have to get started on a couple of final projects...

Which reminds me, the only reason I was able to finish everything on time last quarter was because of Lyndsey's parents. Ken and Kaye Moore were a blessing to have in town during Ian's first few weeks in the world, and my last few weeks of 7th quarter. They helped out tremendously with household chores, dinners, and tending to Ian. Those extra hours were perfect. Thank you for everything.