Leap Week

Well, it’s been a busy week. After getting increasingly good news about Jim, I’ve been heads down working day and night. Night has been spent working up the HTML and CSS templates for ZeroPercentCards.com, so that Van can work his database and backend magic. It’s not done yet, but at least I’m getting the majority of it into place – and it should be WCAG 1.0-compliant, too! I’m hoping to finish up the core work by the end of the weekend – along with our taxes…
It was also a long week as Shari continues to cope with a major flair-up of arthritis in her right (i.e., working) hand. It started two Thursdays ago, and took us 10 days to get insurance approval for her to get the drugs she needed. Add the four days it’s taken for the Celebrex to take effect, and she’s been suffering near-debilitating pain in her hand for almost two weeks. But that’s another (wholly depressing) story, and I want to stay a little more positive.

To that end, her illness did allow for us to watch a few more movies this past weekend, we were able to get some movies in. I’d DVR’d “The Pursuit of Happyness” since I’ve been wanting to see that for a while (Shari and Blair had seen it in theaters while I was away). It was a heck of a movie – Will Smith put in a great performance as a man who might be down and nearly out, but never gave in to the pressures and poverty that threatened him. His ability to show a man who has been pushed to the edge, and teeters on the line but never steps over, is great. Working with his own son made for a very real performance, I think. Definitely worth seeing.

We also got to see a rather interesting and disturbing movie – “Rendition“. A movie that is a not-so-thinly veiled attack on the current administration’s actions during the ‘War on Terror’, it covers how a number of people are drawn together when an Egyptian national married to a U.S. citizen is abducted by the U.S. and tortured on suspicion of being in contact with a known terrorist. There are some good performances in it, and it’s thought-provoking, but just seemed a little too neatly put together – almost a propaganda piece. Of course, considering what the Bush administration has done, it might be a documentary.

We also got to watch a comedy to lighten the mood. We didn’t expect much out of “Good Luck Chuck“, but it was surprisingly funny. The basic plot – “Chuck” has become what the local women think of as a lucky charm – if he sleeps with you, the next man you’re with will be your soul mate. Naturally, he becomes a hot item when this gets out on a local dating site. Problem? That makes it a lot harder to go after the girl he really wants, Jessica Alba. It was good to see the always-hot Alba getting some comedy chops as a super klutz penguin expert, and co-star Dane Cook did a great job as the relatively level-headed (if sarcastic) main character.

Speaking of comedies, we did see “The Simpson’s Movie” recently, too. It was funny, but not as great as I had hoped. I think Blair nailed it when he told us, “Well, it was good but it was really funny only because of all of us being there to laugh at it together.” Basically, anything can be funny if you’re a bunch of college kids sitting in the theater together.

This weekend, we splurged and watched two OnDemand movies – we really need to get that $8.99/month Netflix deal or start going to the library. Last night, I was not in the mood for anything too intense (like “September Dawn” or “In the Valley of Elah”), so we went with a the happy-go-lucky “Hollywoodland“. I had actually heard talk that Ben Affleck gave a possible Oscar-worthy performance when I first heard about this movie, which tackles the events around the death of George Reeves, the original Superman from TV. I’m not sure who thought his performance was that good, but they were on something. The movie was pretty good, though – although Adrien Brody had a much better performance in it.

Tonight, after a long day of chopping wood (damn, I never realized how heavy and tough oak was), we watched “Michael Clayton“, the thriller starring George Clooney and Oscar-winner Tilda Swinton. To be honest, I thought the movie was very good and Clooney also did a good job (not as good as his turns in “Syriana” or “Good Night and Good Luck” but still better than 96% of the performances out there); I’m not sure how Swinton was best supporting actress. Granted, I haven’t seen most of the other actresses who were nominated, but I thought her performance lackluster. But maybe it’s just me.

But for now, it’s time for bed. Tomorrow, hopefully a trip to The Pole Farm to see some owls – if I’m not too sore from all of that wood chopping, that is.


5 Responses to “Leap Week

  • glad to hear Jim is doing well. and i like how you called it magic. does this mean i get to marry Claudia Schiffer now?

  • Claudia Schiffer? Not Alba, Portman or Knightley? Schiffer? Let me guess – you have that old Farrah Fawcet poster hanging up in your room again, don’t you?

  • I am very glad to hear that Jim is doing well!

  • I’m sorry to hear about Shari’s hand, I hope she is feeling better now. Sometimes just staying home and watching movies can be nice … I’ve never seen “DVR” used as a verb before. I’m glad to hear Jim’s doing well, too.

    I haven’t seen any of the movies you mentioned, so no real comment there … other than I wonder how you came up with “better than 96% of the performances out there.”

  • Thanks for your thoughts – hopefully she’s going to be coming out of it very soon. As for me, I just got hit with that flu that’s going around.

    Michael – 96% was pretty arbitrary. But 99% seemed too absolute.

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