May 28, 2007

Flossing – Cross off an everyday goal!

Filed under: General — mmrobins @ 7:42 pm

I think this is the first of my “everday” goals that I can feel good enough about to cross off. There’s certain things I’d like to make enough of a habit that they’re part of my daily routine, and I’ve managed to do that with flossing. I realize this now that I’m even flossing when on vacation. Thanks to my wife for being such a good example on this. The only tip I’d have for others doing this is try the flat floss. It’s a little more expensive, but it won’t hurt like hell if you haven’t flossed regularly in a while.

King of Kong

Filed under: Culture — mmrobins @ 7:12 pm

I finally went to the Egyptian theater! I’ve been waiting for a movie to be there that I wanted to see since I moved to Capitol Hill. Pan’s Labyrinth had been playing for about 2 months since we moved in and I’d already seen it, but finally the Seattle International Film Festival is going on and there’s plenty of selection. The first film I went to see was awesome! King of Kong is a documentary about a guy from Redmond’s quest to set a new world record high score for the classic video game Donkey Kong. This documentary turned out to have an almost hollywood movie-like plot with a protagonist, an antagonist, plot twists and a Rocky style underdog challenge. No romantic story though, thank goodness. In fact, there’s news this movie might be adapted to a Hollywood film with actors. Weird. Perhaps the best part of all is that after the film the guy from Redmond was actually there with his family to answer questions along with the director. He seems like a very humble, nice guy, whereas the rest of the ‘characters’ in the movie seem like something from a Christopher Guest movie – think Best in Show, but about video gamers.

Too bad it’s not showing anymore at the Film Festival, but when it comes out officially in August I’d be down with seeing it again with whoever wants to go.

Sasquatch Music Festival 2007

Filed under: Culture,General — mmrobins @ 5:56 pm

For the second year in a row Kim and I went to the Gorge to see a few days of bands at the Sasquatch Music Festival. It was only two days instead of three this year, and nobody went with us this time whereas Travis came last year.

The highlight of the weekend for me was definitely seeing Manu Chao play. I found his music while living in Spain thanks to my roommates. He played third to last on Saturday night, and played longer than most other bands. He played a few songs I haven’t heard before, but played a lot of the songs from his Clandestino album that I wanted to hear. Of course, nothing he played live sounded quite like the songs from the album. His band, the Radio Bemba Sound System, was very energetic and had the crowd jumping up and down and waving their hands pretty much the whole time. He wove a small bit of Bob Marley’s song “War” into his mix too. The rest of Saturday was fun, and the weather was gorgeous. I really don’t care that much about Bjork’s music, but she was interesting to see live.

Sunday was frickin windy and cold. Early in the day I mostly just tried to deal with the wind and rest. When it became apparent that our primo hillside seats were way too cold to sit in we started moving around to the other stages and had more fun. Smoosh was definitely one of the most novel bands I saw. It’s two barely teenaged girls who put on a pretty good music show, far beyond what you’d expect from girls their age. If I had a daughter I definitely would want her to see these girls rocking out as an example of what young girls can achieve. After their show the wind really picked up and they shut down the main stage for most of the afternoon. This had the side of effect of forcing the Beastie Boys and Spearhead to play at the same time on different stages. We decided to see Spearhead and were not disappointed. They played the longest of any band at the festival and included an awesome cover of Sublime’s “What I Got”. We tried to run over and catch the Beastie Boys before they finished, but their set was very short. We only caught the last little bit of Sabotage, which apparently was the encore.

I’m glad we’ve had the opportunity to see some music at the Gorge the last few years as it’s an amazing music venue, even if the unpredictable weather can be a little overwhelming.

May 18, 2007

Reading Fiction

Filed under: Culture,General — mmrobins @ 12:56 am

I haven’t been writing as much lately, but I’ve definitely been reading more. This is mostly due to the fact that I’ve realized that I miss reading fiction. It seems like since I’ve graduated from college I’ve been drawn almost completely to nonfiction: biographies, educational, motivational, historical and scientific books. While I enjoy reading those books, it’s much more rare for them to suck me in and keep me up reading almost all night like I used to. In fact some of them help put me to sleep even when the subject matter does interest me.

Part of the reason I’ve been avoiding fictions is that I didn’t really like the fiction I was choosing. I was trying to read most of the books from a list of the top 100 best novels, but some of them, while great pieces of literature, bored the crap out of me. I recently found a book list that so far has really appealed to me: IBList. I was looking for the IMDB equivalent for books and it led me to IBList. While IBList isn’t nearly as expansive or useful as IMDB, it’s pointed me in the direction of some great reads. The top books on the site are really skewed toward science fiction, which is alright by me because I’ve been really into that lately.

I just finished reading Flowers for Algernon. I picked it up and couldn’t set it down until I was done. It kind of reminds me of the way Of Mice and Men made me feel. Anyway, very highly recommended. I just realized I ought to sign up for an account and contribute at least some ratings to IBList, if not reviews.