Avatar

Alright, so I know this movie has come and gone, and the debates have mostly died down about it, but I didn’t have a blog to express my opinions so I’m getting it out now. Partially to vent a little, but mostly because I want to write something and I haven’t done or seen anything interesting today.

I saw Avatar twice in theaters. First time, I saw it in standard 2D. It was an alright movie then, and it had an alright storyline. I can, however, understand people not liking the movie when they saw it in 2D because they missed what 80% of the movie was geared towards: pushing the envelope! When I saw it the second time, this time in 3D, I understood that this movie was not about having a great storyline, sending a politically motivated message to movie goers, or anything else of that nature. What the movie was created for was making 3 dimensional art. The effects were astounding, the sounds combined with the images popping out made you feel as if you were on Pandora. I didn’t even really care about the script or the story the second time I watched this movie, I just stared at the shiny.

This being said, I don’t understand why some people hate this movie with such passion. To those that say this movie was the same exact storyline of Pocahontas, just replace some of the words, I say who cares? Very few movies are completely original anymore. Sukiyaki Western Django, for example, was the exact storyline, replace a few words, of War of the Roses. Yet you don’t hear people complaining about that. In fact, many people like it for just that reason because it is a fresh and new take on it.

So what is the difference? Sukiyaki Western Django had almost no buildup in the American market. There was a little bit of excitement to it, but not anywhere near as much as with Avatar.

The one flaw Avatar had was too much hype. I honestly believe this is the only reason there are so many critics of the movie. The movie was, by any technical film standards, virtually flawless. However, the hype was huge. People all saw that this movie was going to be one of the first, and I believe the first in digital, live action 3D films. Along with that, it had the famed director name of James Cameron tattooed on it. With both of these happening, everyone expected an amazing and original work with the best actors money (among other things) could buy. That wasn’t what Cameron set out to do.

Technically speaking, this film is a success and no one can really dispute that. It has grossed $2.7bn worldwide, making it the best-selling film worldwide. EVER. It also pioneered live-action 3D filming, a technology that almost every Epic is trying to get their hands on now. Clash of the Titans tried it, though they didn’t film with it in mind. Avatar: The Last Air Bender is going to do it. Numerous other movies are announcing that they will not only go 3D, they will also film 3D, making the effect close to the effect of Avatar. Pandora was also a brand new world, teeming with unique and highly detailed life. It takes an enormous imagination and a great deal of film genius to put that onto the big screen.

So basically, no matter what anyone says, I think it was a good movie.

Those that say is was being racist by giving the Na’vi dreadlocks and face paint, portraying an “obvious” stereotype of tribal Africans, I say bullshit. Almost every culture had that same style of fashion in their tribal stage of progression. The only thing that would point to it being Africans in particular is the obsessive use of color, however their world is full of color, so it would be natural to assume they would utilize a great amount of color as well.

To those that say it was an attempt to push Cameron’s environmentally friendly political stance on the moviegoers, who cares? If you are reading into it that deep, you are actively TRYING to find some flaw in the film, so your opinion is invalid. The only part would suggest that stance is that the bad guys were strip mining and hurting the planet, however, that just points out an entirely different fact to me. Humans are ruthless when it comes to getting what we want. That’s not a bad thing, and it’s not wrong to put in a movie. It is a historically proven fact that humans are ruthless when it comes to getting what they want. This applies to ALL human beings. It is also a historically proven fact that some “good” comes along that brings that ruthlessness to its knees. So if you want to go along that route, it’s just a movie about another possible future where we give into our nature yet again. No big deal. I can’t even count on my fingers and toes the amount of movies that point that little fact out.

So if you come into my house, see me watching Avatar, and I’m enjoying it. Don’t criticize me. You have your opinion and I have mine. However you cannot deny the proof that is pioneered what is becoming the new “thing” in cinema and that pioneering that made a SHITLOAD of money.

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Filed under Entertainment, Random Awesomeness

New Beginnings

Well, I was offered a new job yesterday. I filled out all the paperwork for it too. The only thing left to do is give my boss notice of me leaving and take the drug test, both of which should be easy and painless, and both are to be done on Monday. The only things that could cause this job to fall through are my drug test and background check. Beyond that, I have plenty of experience in a higher stress hospitality environment (where I’m currently working), so I shouldn’t have to worry too much about doing well. I just have to keep up my customer service professionalism and hope that the overload of my brain from being overworked will not matter too much while I’m training. The drug test and background check I’m not even worried about, they are always clean because I never really do anything.

What does this new job mean? Well, at first, it means $100-150 pay cut per paycheck. At first this sounds bad, but considering it’s that big of a pay cut because I will be working approx. 40 hours less each pay period, I’m willing to accept it. It’s about time I had some time to myself to relax. Been working my ass off for 6+ months now. I need this break. Money cut aside, the job has its perks. I am getting a dollar an hour raise. I will generally have a set schedule. Even if the schedule changes, it’s made a month in advance, so I can plan what I do around it with plenty of time to spare. I will eventually get vacation time ( I think. I remember hearing that from my interview a while back, not this job offer. I never asked). I get paid overtime (finally)! I get similar employee prices on NICER hotels than the chain (I am not going to name names here) I am currently with. I even get holiday pay! I also believe I can opt into benefits after a while, but, once again, I did not ask that, I just seem to remember them mentioning it when I interviewed for another position a while back.

Now, all of this is combined with moving into a new place that will be saving me around $360/mo. It’s a little further away from work, and I won’t be with awesome friends, but even after gas is taken into account, that much savings makes my after-bill pay approximately $60-160/mo. more than my current job and living situation. That will be very nice. The way I figured it out, after all my bills, including gas for work and $400 into savings each month, I will be able to afford $17 of food per day! That means a few cold beers after work and a decent meal. Maybe even lunch on my *gasp* breaks! That’s right. My days of working 12-16 hours without any technical break are over! Back to this food situation though, you may be wondering “Why is $17 per day in food such a big thing?”. Well, It’s such a big thing because I have (partially through my own fault, but most of the time just because of mishaps that are, if not out of my control, very hard for me to control) been living off of $2-5 a day for food for the past 6 months. Now, the part that is mainly my fault is when my friend Ray comes down. It’s a problem both of us have always had. Whenever we are together, we always part ways with naught but a penny to spare. We drink a lot, drive a lot (not at the same time mind you… except for that one time possibly), go see all the movies we haven’t had a chance to until now, hang out with friends that are primarily friends to both of us, but not really either of us, and any other sort of money-required activity we can bust out. Beyond that, however, it hasn’t really been my fault. So as you can imagine, I will be enjoying this freedom quite a bit.

To sum this all up, this is what is on my plate:

– I will start getting treated like an employee, not a slave (slaves got paid in the way of food and shelter, which is all I’ve been able to afford for the most part, so I do not feel bad about making that analogy after how I’ve been treated).


– I will be able to take vacations eventually, which was no more than a child’s dream prior to this.


– I will be able to go home after work and *gasp* be able to eat while watching TV and enjoying a cold beer without having to cut my time for sleep down to 4 hours.


– I will be able to start saving money! This will get me a new car in a year (if I can stick with the plan) or sooner and allow me to remain fairly financially secure, even if I lose my job for some reason (as of right now I plan on staying at the new job for at least a year, hopefully more, and see no reason I can’t fulfill my duties to make them want to keep me on).


– I will gain experience working in a high-class hotel, which will allow me to move into a nicer city hotel at some point down the road if I so wish.


– I might even have the time for college! Go degrees… and stuff!


– I will have more time to get back into gaming and hanging out with all my friends, not just the ones I live with.

Overall it’s great. Things are finally falling into place for me. There are still some things that I need to actually WORK at, such as lowering my credit score, which I’m going to look and start knocking things off one at a time with no more than half of the money I put into savings, and paying off all of my debt (I think those two are one in the same actually), but that will come with time and this situation is what will allow me to work at that. I might even be able to get that new car early if I can build my score up enough.  However, these two things kind of just fell in my lap (granted after I started finally thinking of myself as well as other people, not JUST other people) and I would like to think that all the bad karma I have gotten in spite of the good I do hasn’t just been in spite of me, it was to teach me to be a better person so I could finally enjoy life once it started falling into place.

Here’s to hoping I didn’t just jinx this. Cheers.

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About Damn Time

Alright, so I stumbled upon this post while looking at the blogs on the front page of WordPress.com. It was interesting, so I figured I’d throw it in here and make known my opinions since, ya’know, that’s what these things are for.

First, here’s the news article on the breakthrough described in there. It’s actually very interesting and the possibilities are endless.

Now, though not the building blocks of life, bacteria are very important for life. Sadly, schools don’t push the concept of good bacteria that much, at least not the ones I went to, so a large part of the American public hear of bacteria being created are probably thinking that it’s a horrible idea. As most of my friends know though, since I only hang with the intelligent (semi) type, bacteria is actually responsible for a lot of good things. With creating bacteria, and therefore being in DIRECT control of their function (once all the kinks are worked out of course), we can create bacteria that will break down compost much faster than the random bacteria responsible for it currently, thus eliminating a great deal of our worry of creating too much trash. We could theoretically create bacteria that will clean our atmosphere. We could, through the creation of bacteria, solve most of our climate related issues, and perhaps a few more.

A big argument against this, and the first one I will talk in length about since the other argument is bullshit, is the possibility of an I Am Legend type accident. “Oh hey, we created bacteria that will eat cancer away and poop out fresh cells!” Alright, this is understandable. However, there is a large difference right off the bat due to, correct me if I’m wrong about it, the nature of bacteria. The creation in I Am Legend was a virus. It also wasn’t a brand new virus, it was just the flu virus that was genetically manipulated. The big thing about viruses are that they are hard as hell to kill. Most viruses can survive extreme heat, extreme cold, most radiation, ect. BACTERIA, on the other hand, are much different. We have learned how to kill most bacteria. About the only reason some bacteria still poses a problem to humanity at this stage is because it spreads so damn fast. Realistically, compared to a virus it doesn’t even adapt that quickly, it just SPREADS. So, while I understand the concern, unless there we somehow create a super bacteria that is impossible to kill or spreads to every human in a matter of days, then we are fine. Just burn or freeze the infected, and keep going. I know it sounds harsh, but the casualties should be fairly low and, depending on what the outbreak is a result of, our entire planet could be at stake. Even a couple hundred thousand humans isn’t anything compared to the entire planet and, by proxy, the entire human race in my mind.

The other argument is that it is morally unacceptable since we are playing God. If we copy creation, we are playing God, so of course creating from scratch is playing God. All I have to say is this. Every religion has, at some point in their history, and most of them still do, tried to slow down or stop the advancement of any knowledge and learning that either isn’t from that religion or isn’t something that has been globally accepted as fact for decades at least, sometimes centuries. Considering that the majority of technology is used daily, by the very same religions that called the early advancements toward said technology evil, and that most of it has helped us advance considerably, I always call bullshit whenever I hear a religion-based morality argument. They have almost always been wrong in the past, they will be wrong again.

To sum this up, my main concern is that I will end up as one of the first plague victims. If it doesn’t turn me into a Space Marine, I don’t want it.

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Filed under When Machines Run The World