7/31/2009

That Was Weird...

Let me start by saying that I don't see a lot of scary movies. At least, not "horror" scary. This probably stems from me being afraid of the dark. Well, that and my overactive imagination. I'm pretty sure that I've got the imagination of a 10 year old on Lik-m-aid and Red Bull. Anyway, like I said, not so much with the scary movies.

So needless to say, I didn't go see Orphan. Editor's Note: I also have some residual fear of little doll-like children left over from when Child's Play came out when I was in first grade. I had a My Buddy Doll. What can I say?

Being a movie guy; even if I don't see a movie, I like to know as much as I can about it. So I was stoked when I discovered that wikipedia provides some pretty in depth synopses of movies. Editor's Note: Yes. I had to look up the plural form of synopsis. So, since I wasn't going to see Orphan, I looked it up.

After reading the summary of its plot, my suspicions were confirmed. This was definitely a movie that would have freaked me out. I was very proud of myself for not spending money on seeing something that would have, no doubt, left me scared of all of my friends' little girls. So I went to bed last night without a care in the world...

AND HAD NIGHTMARES ABOUT THE LITTLE GIRL FROM ORPHAN ALL NIGHT LONG!!!

That's right. Apparently reading about this movie (as well as seeing commercials) was enough to cause me to have terrible dreams about a murderous little turn-of-the-century dressing girl coming after me.

From now on, I'm only going to read about Spider-man before bed. Unless that makes me dream that I'm in Spider-man 3. Man I hated that movie...

Power Rankings: 12...

Power Rankings are normally like Cliffs Notes for the uneducated to talk about sports with their friends. Unless I do them. Then they're like an encyclopedia of awesome...

1. Leaked Images From the Iron Man 2 Comic Con Panel Before you ask, no. They're not of Tony Stark's goatee. Frown. But they're almost as cool. Want to see some blurry images of War Machine and some slightly clearer images of Mickey Rourke as Whiplash? Good. Because that's what I've got. By the way, this is Iron Man 2 post #7... (link)

2. The Venture Bros. Not sure how it took me so long to discover this show on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. But I'm more than stoked that I did. I want to be Brock Samson when I grow up... (link)

3. Cake No. Not the band. (Although they're great too.) I mean actual, real, delicious cake. I made one this past Sunday that knocked everyone I knew off of their feet. It was like an apocakelypse. See what I did there... (link)

4. Traveling I just booked two trips for August to meet with churches about potential jobs. I can't wait! One is back in Southern California, and one is in North Carolina. Cue the Jo Dee Messina song... (link)

5. Harry Potter After seeing Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince last week, I picked up the book again and re-read it. It was an incredible decision. I've now started re-reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Such great writing. Thanks JKR... (link)

7/30/2009

Bryce Dallas Howard: The Easiest Way to Kill a Movie Series...

Earlier this week, a big hullabaloo was made of a casting change up in the Twilight Saga movie, Eclipse. It seems that Rachelle Lefevre is being replaced in the role of Victoria by Bryce Dallas Howard. According to the studio, Lefevre booked another movie scheduled to shoot during a crucial time in the sequel's production. According to Lefevre, the studio is lying and never indicated a problem with scheduling to her before they announced the recast. According to me, teenage girls everywhere are still going to see this movie no matter what, so who cares.

But, I feel like someone needs to warn the studio of the potential consequences of their decision to bring in Howard. I don't have anything against Bryce. I happen to think she's really talented and pretty. But, in looking over her resume on IMDb, I can't help but notice a pattern. Let's see if you can spot it, I'll even highlight some clues for you...

There have been three times when Bryce has appeared in pre-existing movies series. (And yes, I'm counting The Village as part of a series. Shyamalan's movies are similar enough to make that claim.) And each of those three times marked the first time in the series that a movie was marked by commercial or critical failure.

The Village was the first film by M. Night Shyamalan that wasn't met with immediate praise. It also served as a road mark in a steady downhill slide in success. Spider-man 3 saw tons of commercial success, but was pretty much universally despised. And Terminator Salvation, despite its desperate attempt at legitimacy in casting Christian Bale, was still but a shadow of what Terminator 1 and 2 was. And didn't make nearly as much money as the studio had hoped. What? You say they made a part 3? Hmm... Don't remember that.

So Summit Studios, beware. It seems that Bryce Dallas Howard, despite her good looks and talent, might actually be a bad luck charm in regards to sequels. Good thing you've got legions of teenage emo/goth girls who are already camping out for tickets to New Moon in November...

7/29/2009

Web Wednesday: I Shot a Man In Weno...

It's Web Wednesday!

Last year, on Web Wednesday, I featured a little kid singing Hey Jude. At the time, I thought that nothing could beat this incredibly cute cover version. But I was wrong. Check out this little kid singing Folsom Prison Blues. Incredible...

7/27/2009

Piece of Cake...

The men's ministry at my church had a best cake contest on Sunday night. And I was asked to enter.

Now, I knew going in that I didn't want to make just any ordinary cake. Anyone can submit a yellow cake with chocolate icing. No. I wanted to make a cake that was a true testament to manliness. So I started thinking about how I could combine manliness and cake. I came up with the greatest idea to ever be thought of...

The "Steak Cake".

I would make a cake that looked exactly like a t-bone steak.

I began my work on Saturday night. But, I found out on Sunday, that my cake would need to be completed and submitted by 4:30pm on Sunday. And there was just no way that was going to happen. So I had to put the dream of a "Steak Cake" on hold. Editor's Note: Don't worry. I'm still going to do it.

So, at about 2pm on Sunday, I decided to call an audible and make a different cake. I ended up making a butter pecan cake with butter cream icing topped with pecan pieces. Yeah, I know. It sounds delicious because it is.

I finished the cake at 6pm on Sunday. It was much too late to submit. So now, I have a cake. As of 6pm on Sunday evening, I had a whole cake. As of now, 10:44pm on Monday night, this is all that's left...

So, if you judge a cake's deliciousness by how quickly it moves, I suppose you could call this cake a success...

7/25/2009

Lee Greenwood, Eat Your Heart Out...

I mentioned before that I sent a present off to a friend. Here's David wearing his gift...

My great-uncle is a part of some type of veteran's association (as he is a Korean War veteran) and received this t-shirt in the mail. Since he didn't want it, he asked me if I did. But the problem was, I knew it already belonged to David Hughes. So I sent it to him. By the way, it says "Proud To Be An American".

Does that happen to anyone else? That you see something that is so much a part of someone else that you know it's your job to give it to them?

I love giving gifts...

7/23/2009

As If I Wasn't Sad Enough Already...

Hello. I'm Josh Treece, and I'm a geek.

And right now, any geek worth his Slurm is in San Diego at the Con. Of course, I'm on the other side of the country. But just in case you've never stopped by here before, here's some of my reasons for loving it.

Not being able to go for the second year in a row has made me so sad. Seeing all of the updates begin to roll in on twitter, superherohype, aintitcool, and ew had already put a slight slump in my shoulders. But seeing what google looked like today brought on a full fledged frown...

When google recognizes how cool something is by honoring it with a logo redesign, you know it's awesome.

Sigh... Maybe next year...

Plans...

Plan: A method for achieving an end, a detailed formulation of a program of action, a goal or aim, an orderly arrangement of parts of an overall design or objective

It's funny how death always makes us examine life. After attending a funeral this past weekend, I couldn't help but begin to think about my life: where I've been, where I'm at, and where I'm going. I also thought about how different things have turned out from the way that I planned them.

20 years ago: I planned on becoming a cartoonist. Not an animator, but a cartoonist. I wanted to draw cartoons that appeared in the newspaper or in Marvel. That was about as far as my mind could take me at the time...

15 years ago: I planned on becoming a movie director. I was obsessed with reading about Steven Spielberg and wanted to follow in his footsteps. So I planned on going out to USC's Film School and making it big. I also planned on possibly joining the Army or Navy to pay for it...

10 years ago: I planned on finishing my degree at CIU and finding a youth ministry job in Columbia, SC...

5 years ago: I planned on finishing my 2 year internship and finding a middle school ministry job in Southern California. I was also planning on being married within a year...

3 years ago: I planned on saving enough money to buy my own home in San Diego. I also planned on being at my church for the long haul, growing the middle school ministry, and seeing my coworkers' kids come through...

It's funny how certain I was of how all of those plans would work out, and how so few of them did. We all make plans. Some of them succeed. Some of them don't. But even if we can't be 100% certain of how our plans will turn out, we can be 100% certain that God will be watching over us the whole way. He protects and provides for us. He's got our back. And even though we may make plans, He guides our steps.

Now I've just got to figure out what His plan is for my next steps...

7/22/2009

Web Wednesday: Maybe You Shouldn't Buy That...

It's the return of Web Wednesday!

Do you have an exorbitant amount of money that you're looking to throw away on some useless bauble? Then send it to me. Or make your way over to the blog, Maybe You Shouldn't Buy That, browse around, and select a luxury item to waste your hard earned paycheck on!

Personally, I like the Relaxman Relaxation Capsule...

7/21/2009

What I Did Today...

  • Got up and checked my email on my computer that's no longer broken...

  • Went with my D to visit my dad at his lake house. He's recovering well from his surgery last Friday...

  • Had lunch with D at Rush's...

  • Picked up an envelope in which to mail a present to someone...

  • Had another phone interview with a church...

  • Was asked by said church to fly out to meet with them in person...

  • Saw Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince for the second time...

  • Typed out this blog post...
  • 7/20/2009

    I Love You, Beth Cooper...

    Since I've been computer-less for two weeks, not to mention blog-less, I wasn't able to say that my review of the movie version of I Love You, Beth Cooper went live at youthministry.com. Click on the link to check it out. Rate and comment please...

    Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder...

    15 days... It's been 15 days since I last blogged. Editor's Note: Not that anyone's noticed. Here's why:

    Two Monday's ago my computer (a 2005 Mac Powerbook G4 laptop) threw a little tantrum and stopped doing work (son). So I took it into the stop to get repaired the following day. Since their are no Apple stores in South Carolina, I tracked down a local business that repairs Macs. Based upon a recommendation from a friend and my cousin, I took my machine to Wegener Media. They told me that it would take 1-3 business days to diagnose. It took 7 regular days. They told me that I needed a new Logic Board (motherboard for you PC users) and DC-in board (something to do with getting power into the computer). After they told me the price for the repairs (frown), I (and by "I", I mean my mom) took a few days to get the money together and then went ahead with the repair. My computer was returned to me this past Friday. But over the weekend, I noticed that its speakers were malfunctioning. Editor's Note: This made my weekend viewing of Dead Like Me on Hulu very confining. You know... because I had to use headphones... So I wrote an email to Wegener to explain the situation. They wrote back and told me to bring my machine in and they would take care of the repair!

    I now have my computer back, and all systems are go! (If you're in the Columbia, SC area, and need Mac repair, I would highly recommend Wegener Media.)

    So, starting today, blogging resumes as normal. Boo Yah...

    7/05/2009

    I'm Sorry... Did You Say King David...

    His stupidity brings tears to my eyes too...

    I mentioned in my last post that, due to his nationally mocked recent actions, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford has caused me to feel embarrassment. The truth is, his actions have caused me to feel a variety of emotions. I'm indignant that another politician has morally failed his family by cheating on his wife while at the same time ethically failing his constituency by using state funds to do so. I'm heartbroken at the thought of the pain that a wife and four sons have to go through because of his choices. And I'm saddened that they must endure questions from the media while they deal with all of this. But my embarrassment stems from something beyond all of that. My embarrassment stems from Governor Sanford's complete lack of intelligence throughout this whole debacle.

    A brief summary of events:

  • Sanford disappears over Father's day weekend to "clear his head" after a "tough legislative season".
  • After being gone for four days, without leaving any way for his family or staff to reach him, the media begins asking questions.
  • Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer claims that there is no established process in place for him to assume power were there to be a state emergency in the governor's absence.
  • His wife says she doesn't know where he is.
  • His staff claims that he is hiking the Appalachian Trail.
  • On "a hunch" a reporter from The State drives down to Atlanta's Hartfield-Jackson International Airport and waits for a flight to arrive from Argentina that she suspects the governor might be on.
  • Governor Sanford claims he had intended to hike the Appalachian Trail, but changed his mind and went down to Argentina to "drive along the coast".
  • The Governor holds a press conference at The State House and announces the he has been having an extramarital affair and had gone to Argentina to be with his lover, who is later identified as Argentina native Maria Belen Shapur.
  • Governor Sanford later admits to using state funds to pay for his trip, and says he's going to pay it all back.
  • Governor Sanford announces that he has no intention of resigning, publicly comparing himself to King David, saying that "I remain committed to rebuilding the trust that has been committed to me over the next 18 months, and it is my hope that I am able to follow the example set by David in Bible - who after his fall from grace humbly refocused on the work at hand. By doing so, I will ultimately better serve in every area of my life, and I am committed to doing so."

    Do you see what I'm talking about by saying he displayed a lack of intelligence? A state governor, who is a husband and father of four sons, disappears... DISAPPEARS... over Father's Day weekend without informing anyone of his intended whereabouts. He just left! He didn't tell his family or his staff any way that they could reach him in case their was a family or state emergency.

    If you were smart, wouldn't you at least lie about where you're going? Wouldn't you say it was a place that had no cell phone reception, and then leave your cell at home? I mean, there are records that show him making a cell phone call from Atlanta, before turning his phone off and leaving the country.

    And why would his staff lie about him hiking the Appalachian Trail? Why didn't they just say that his location was confidential? Or, better yet, tell the truth and say that they didn't know where he was?

    And why would you not insure that there was a process in place that would allow for someone to assume power in case of an emergency? (This has actually been a problem in South Carolina for some time. There's never been a law to clarify this.) Did you just naively assume that no problems could ever arise?

    But all of that can't compare to what happened next... You'd think that if, by some amount of luck, something happened in the world that drew focus away from your situation, you'd gladly shrink back into the background. You'd be thankful that the media turned its giant red eye away from you and toward what, or whoever, was unlucky enough to draw its attention. But it would take something big. It would take something national. It would take something take would cause the world to slow down, if only for a moment.

    Something like the death of The King of Pop...

    So now that everyone's looking the other way, you'd retreat right? You'd circle the wagons and thank the Lord that you've been given the opportunity to silently collect your dignity and begin working hard to mend all of the bridges you'd burned. But not our Governor. Oh no. He gave ANOTHER INTERVIEW!

    A brief continuance of events:

  • Governor Sanford gives an interview with the Associated Press saying that, "I'm quite certain there were a handful of instances wherein I crossed lines that I shouldn't have crossed as a married man. But never crossed the ultimate line." Adding, "This is a whole lot more than a simple affair, and it's a love story. A forbidden one, a tragic one, but a love story at the end of the day." But wait, there's more. "I remember there was an older couple sitting to our right, and I remember them watching us, in the way that we interacted. They could see a spark... or I don't know what you'd call it."

    So, as a public figure with an already stained reputation, you are given an opportunity to metaphorically disappear (as opposed to the time you actually disappeared) and you respond by GIVING ANOTHER INTERVIEW WHERE YOU ADMIT TO MORE WRONG DOING!?!?!

    Complete... lack... of intelligence.

    And I'm embarrassed that someone of questionable moral and ethical standards and without the discernment of when to speak and when to stay silent was elected governor of my state... TWICE.

    But at least The Daily Show got some good bits out of it. My favorite of which (and one of the major inspirations for this post) can be found here. (Some NSFW language)

    To close out this extremely long post, I'd like to offer my thanks to Governor Sanford. Thanks, Mr. Governor, for adding to the already exceedingly cynical view that most Americans (especially South Carolinians) have of politicians. Thanks for showing that even high ranking officials don't always think through their actions. Thanks for taking responsibility for your mistakes. Over and over and over again. Even when no one asked.

    Now be quiet...