Sunday, March 30, 2008

Jared MouseKiller

Today I had the opportunity to exercise my ecclesiastical responsibilities as home teacher by killing a mouse that some girls found in their basement.

Of course I'm always delighted to help when I can, but I have very little experience when it comes to sending small, harmless vermin to their eternal reward.

Here's the poor, little guy. He had two paws free, you know. It looked like his back two paws were broken. Even if I were so inclined, I probably couldn't let him loose, because his death would be slow and agonizing.

Remembering the "News Radio" episode "Rat Funeral," I decided to employ a variety of tools, including a telephone book.

I wrapped the poor little guy up in some plastic bags...

...then I placed the telephone book over the bags...

...and slammed it three times with a snow shovel.

Bang. Dead mouse.

Fun way to start the morning -- and a much more exciting home teaching visit than just delivering the First Presidency message!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Indiana Jones and the Lowered Expectations

As Rapier Whit struggles to find its voice in the post-Romney campaign world, I think it's important that we kick off the summer movie season with a little Indiana Jones preview.

Note the article in today's USA Today:

It begins:

"To hear him talk, you'd think George Lucas would have preferred to call his movie Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: Don't Get Your Hopes Up."

To which I respond "ROTF LOL LMAO WMP."

Creator of Indiana Jones, George Lucas is resurrecting the beloved 80s icon for a new generation. There is an obvious parallel to draw between a new Indy flick and the Star Wars episodes 1, 2, and 3. Indeed a decade has now passed since the hype for "Star Wars: The Phantom Menace," which was both arguably and sadly the best of the Star Wars prequel movies.

(Note: I will write my diatribe on Star Wars eventually, probably when "Clone Wars" comes out.)

I was never a huge Indiana Jones fan. Sure, they're great, but - frak - I couldn't even get a quote from "Temple of Doom" on Jay's, "movie trivia Friday" a couple weeks ago, even though I'd watched "Temple of Doom" just a few days prior! Yeargh.

Anyway. So Lucas is trying to build hype while managing expectation. Sounds rough. Seems like the better thing to do would have been, oh I don't know, make a really great movie.

However, unlike the Star Wars prequels, Indy 4 has the tremendous advantage of bringing back both its star actor, Harrison Ford, and its star director, Stephen Spielberg. (Imagine the Star Wars prequels if Lucas had been able to tap Alec Guinness and Irvin Kershner?)

Ultimately, I don't really care if Indy 4 is as good as any of the original three. That's not what this movie is about. This movie will be pure nostalgia, both for the golden years of the best action hero since James Bond, and for the simplicity of a villain like the Soviets in the painfully complicated post-9/11 world we now live in.

However, given that Indy 4 is a nostalgia piece, what fills me with a sackcloth-and-ashes remorse about the film is the original cast members that won't be coming back. Obviously, we'd all like to see Connery return as Henry Jones, Sr., but that was perhaps too much to hope for.

But Lucas could - and should - have made a phone call to John Rhys Davies to return as Sallah. Given his success as Gimli in in the Lord of the Rings movies, and the inevitability that he will return as Gloin for the upcoming Hobbit movies, Davies is a star in his own right. Davies would have put bums in seats.

Moreover, the one thing that any possible concept of an "Indy: the later years" film needs - nay, demands - is to cast Jet Li as a grown-up Short Round.

C'mon. The price of admission would be worth watching Jet Li throw down some hard-core kung fu before saying, "Like I always said, Indy, you listen to me, you live longer!"

Alas, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" will have none of those three actors. It will have Karen Allen returning as Marian from "Raiders," but Karen Allen was never anything more than a poor man's Margot Kidder. (Look: Allen doesn't even merit a hyperlink to her Wikipedia entry.)

Furthermore, it doesn't appear that "Crystal Skull" will have any religious overtones. At its heart, the Indiana Jones mythology is about a mercenary treasure hunter who becomes a believer in Hinduism (Temple of Doom), Judaism (Raiders), and Christianity (Last Crusade). It's the strong religious overtone that makes the Indiana Jones trilogy _films_ rather than just movies.

But what would the next religion be for Dr. Jones to save/be saved by?

In the post 9/11 world, and especially coming from Spielberg, there's no way on Earth it would have been Islam. Buddhism perhaps, but I don't really see the Buddha throwing punches and cracking whips, though in the context of Tibetan occupation, "Indiana Jones and a The Three Jewels" would make a pretty compelling story.

How about... "Indiana Jones and the Lost City of Zarahemla"?

They could get Mitt Romney to make a cameo.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Insert creative Easter-related title here

I just came home from visiting "the fam" for Easter. Fool that I am, I flew into BWI. The plan arrived in the small hours of the night. The shuttle got me here more than two (2) hours after that. The driver refused to drive at an adequately fast speed. The other passengers needed to be hauled to these bizarre, out-of-the-way places (Gallaudet University, what the hell is that?).

If I ever buy a ticket out of BWI ever again, you are entitled to shoot me. In the brain.

Monday, March 17, 2008

March Madness

Anyone who reads this regularly or is remotely familiar with me knows that I am not a big sports fan.



March Madness.

Although I don't particularly care about the games, or even watch them if I can help it, I am the office March Madness fiend. If enthusiasm for bracketswere people, I'd be China.

I think that my love for March Madness starting in college. Again, not because I cared about college basketball, but because I felt like one of the "big kids" when the Chrony sports editor, Wally, invited me to participate in the paper's senior staff bracket competition. If memory serves, I did dreadful.

That love affair was rekindled recently, when I watched an episode of "The Office" where Kevin Malone references March Madness.

Go there you go. I always predict that
UNC will win, mainly because that's where a close relative went to grad school. Go Tar Heels!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Abandon Reason for Madness?: A Descent Into Cyber-bullying

I confess that I am an avid fan of the online networking sensation Facebook. With my two worlds divided between Utah and D.C., and with the social over-stimulus of the Colonial singles ward, I simply need an electronic aide to help me keep track of every one in my life. I simply have too many casual acquaintances to keep track of without the Internet. (There I said it.)

I love Facebook so muc, though, that I can't understand why any of my Colonial singles ward friends would eschew it. Even my friends who are married and with children are on Facebook! Hamma mamma.

Yet there are those who hold out, despite my relentless testimony-bearing of the merits of Facebook. In response, I took my first dive into "cyber-bullying" and created a Facebook group that "So and so Must Join Facebook Now." Within a week, it had 20 members.

Cyber-bullying... Have I abandoned reason for madness?

Monday, March 10, 2008


So I turned 30 on Friday. I guess it's one of those "milestone" ages that's supposed to be significant and prompt every manner of wistful rumination.


It really hasn't, though, and not because I'm too cool for school or any such thing, but mainly I went through my quarter-life WTF last year when I turned 29, so I've had a year to prepare for the big 3-0.

Now the countdown begins to 31, upon which I will be ejected from the singles ward. Krom!


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