The Plight Of Jeans & Shoes

I Shouldn't Have This Problem In America!

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, March 30, 2011 - 09:39:59 pm
(Posted Under: No Category)
You know, one of the great things that I'd take advantage of whenever I traveled Stateside was the opportunity for pick up new shoes and jeans.

As far as shoes went, the advantage was always price. I'd pretty much always pick up pairs of Vans that I liked for somewhere between US$25 and US$50 - usually at that lower figure range. Jeans however, that whole thing was based out of necessity. Finding jeans I actually liked in Australia started to become fairly difficult in the late 90's, and the flood of euro trash styles just continued to increase throughout the 2000's. So much so, that trips to Arizona in 2005 and 2006 were fashion saviors. Sure, the price of Levi's also slayed the prices in Australia, but it was all about style baby.

So now I live in the States. When it comes to jeans and shoes, it's all pretty much smooth sailing from here, right? Not quite. When I moved here, I was in a desperate position when it came to jeans. Pairs from 2005 and 2006 were barely holding on by a thread - literally. And having lived in Australia for 2 and a half years, Katie was suffering the same affliction. But in early 2009 I wasn't sweating it. We were months aware from moving to the land of stylish jeans of days gone by. The home of the brave.

It'd been 3 years between drinks in America for me. Almost as long for Katie. Things had changed. Gone were the days of walking into a store and having the dilemma of wanting every pair of jeans on the shelf. The affliction that was jean shopping that plagued my homeland of Australia had traveled across the Pacific Ocean and infected North America. The euro trash style had taken over here also. The only style of jeans it appears to not have taken out Stateside is the oversized and baggy rural redneck style. I'll avoid both like the plaque thank you very much. Things were not at all helped by the fact that at some point Levi's also dropped my jean - the 504. Thanks for that.

The search for jeans was long, laborious and rather unrewarding. To the point that I had to settle for a pair that I weren't overly happy with, later finding some fashion relief thanks to the "Arizona" brand. Funnily enough, with the use of a store coupon, the pair of jeans I own that I like the most currently cost me a grand total of $6! And I'm actually faring better than Katie, who still lives in a dire pants situation. Her motherland continues to leave her hanging.

But the whole runners thing has got to be different though, right? Yeah, not so much. As I remember it, I didn't have a dire shoe situation when I touched down in the US. No I didn't. I'd broken out a pair that I'd brought here in 2006 at least a few months earlier to boarding the flight to the US. But somewhere between then and now I've walked a hole into them. For reals. Not the usual wear at the back on the heel. A really decent hole in the sole at the front of the shoe. It's not a half assed one. I brought half of Sedona back to Phoenix in my shoe the other month. That sock will never be the same again. [wink] It's been an issue for quite a while. Initially I was able to get by - this is Phoenix - it doesn't rain. It kinda sucked in the midwest and the snow over Christmas admittedly. But once it got big enough that I could feel the surface I was walking on, and then when I'd put on a white sock in the morning and take off a black one at night, we knew we had a problem to address.

But my plight wasn't due to not trying to do something about it. We started looking at new shoes - I don't remember exactly when, but quite a while ago. When we started out, admittedly I was a bit picky, by all accounts wanting to find something I liked, but also get it for a $25 type deal of days gone by. As time went on, and the hole got bigger, that became less and less of a priority. To the point over the past few months where the only requirements I've had has been 1) a shoe I like and 2) that is comfortable. No store, including several Vans outlets, could satisfy these rather modest requirements. Last night we had a break through, finding a pair that I can live with. As too the $39.99 price tag, I can force myself to live with that.

We'd actually gone out to replace the Converse flip flops as per the last entry. The flip flop search didn't end the way that at least the shoe one did. Here comes more months of painful endless searching. Oh, I can't wait!
Now Playing: Satelitte - Some Of The Things

Have I Been Here That Long?

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, March 30, 2011 - 12:49:09 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
It's heating up in the desert, and is time to deal with my flip flop situation. Katie got me an awesome pair of Converse flip flops for Christmas a few years back. Maggie did a number on them back in Warsaw. Well, just on one actually. Chris did an amazing patch up job on them, which got them through until last year, when they finally gave way and broke.

Trying to source a new pair, because let's face it - they're the perfect flip flops for me - the following conversation ensued:

"Do you remember where we got them?"

"I wasn't there when you got them. But didn't we see them at Sports Authority?"

"Sport's Authority is an American store!"

Well, there you go - almost two years in, and I have no idea what sports stores are Australian and which ones are American! For the record, I was thinking of Rebel Sports. Of course, I absolutely could not recall that on my own and had to hit up Google for a map of Northland Shopping Center. It's kind of a bizarre thing.

Anyways, if anyone in Oz comes across any stores that stock these, please let me know. I can't find any, and for all extents they appear to have been a UK/Australian line. I can't for the life of me find any hint that they were ever sold in the States. As far as I can make out they're "Converse CT Sandals".

Now Playing: Stephen Ashbrook - Another Boring Day

File This Under...

Lizards, Poison Shirts - It's How We Roll

(Add / View Comments) (1)Sunday, March 27, 2011 - 08:04:09 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
File this under "crap we don't need, but brought anyway". Well, maybe it's better placed under "crap we don't need, but really do need". [smile] Of course, the misses is going to want a dog to put in it now! [wink]

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Took a trip up to North Scottsdale this afternoon to check on the water dragon we looked at two weeks ago. Turns out he'd been sold in between the last time Katie was there, sometime last week, and today. Given the place I was in today, which could be described best as "impulsive", it was a probably a good thing. Disappointing, sure, but who knows what sort of craziness would have ensued otherwise. Not to say the endeavor is quashed, just delayed. Delayed is actually a good thing, this afternoon would have been premature.

Of course, the purchase we did make begs the obvious question - will a Beaded Dragon or Chinese Water Dragon grow large enough to fit in a Poison t-shirt? [smile] Yes, now what an awesome concept that is.
Now Playing: The Pistoleros - My Guardian Angel

The Persuaders @ Goat Head Saloon

(Add / View Comments) (0)PhotosSaturday, March 26, 2011 - 11:26:56 pm
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music, Live Shows)
We got back from the arts festival and some grocery shopping this afternoon to find tickets for tonight's show in the mail. Gracias to Lawrence and The Blaze for that! In all honesty, given that we 'won' them on Thursday, we had doubts that they were actually going to get here before today.

Headed out to the Goat Head around 11. Immediately was tackled by the New Times street team for pics. Given that we signed our lives away, it'd be nice to think that we'll actually appear in the New Times this week. I guess we'll see.

Photobox ImageI'd really figured that tonight would be nothing but a sea of familiar faces. I was surprisingly mistaken. With the exception of Andy, who came over and chatted about last night's gig, we basically didn't recognize anyone until we saw Annemar not long before the Persuader's hit the stage. Strange, and certainly couldn't have been due to lack of promotion of the show.

Photobox ImageLawrence kicked off the show by introducing everyone and then announcing "that was then, this is now" and overall seemed pretty excited about the show. There was no screwing around, launching straight into Drove It All Away. That's the way to start a show of right.

Photobox ImageDespite the billing as the "debut" of the band, we've seen them quite a few times over the past 2 years. Starting out as Rusty Buckles (previously N.A.P.P) sans Lawrence, and Stellanova since. With that said, there was definitely a sense that this was a debut, and the band stepping out into the spotlight, which is a great thing. For the past year and a half we've desperately wanted more shows and an album. Tonight definitely made it seem like we're going to get our wish. On both accounts, with word that they album may be released in August.

Photobox ImageThe show was great, but that's hardly anything different from any other time we've seen them. Impressively there were at least 2 songs that were new even to us. Unfortunately, other than Christmas Eve, it's been a while since they've played and it's hard to remember if there were any songs that they didn't play tonight. Though I'm pretty sure the one Thomas plays with a drum stick was absent from the setlist.

Photobox ImageBefore leaving we signed Lawrence's guitar on the way out. A cool thing, and certainly a role reversal, being on the other end of the signing experience. [wink]


Tempe Festival Of The Arts

(Add / View Comments) (0)Saturday, March 26, 2011 - 06:04:03 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
We started out today with a sleep in, laundry and then headed out later in the afternoon for the Tempe Festival Of The Arts. It was absolutely an awesome day for it - sunny beautiful day, but not too hot. We bagged a car park in the small free lot out the back of Depot Cantina, which was a major coop in several ways. The first was that after last night, we weren't really up for added walking. The second was that we were able to the mystery of how and where we walked through to Ash all those years ago. And determined that the reason for the confusion on my birthday last year was that it's now closed off. It's a shame. After walking around the front and down to Third Street, I won't lie, it was very tempting to duck in for a Snake Bite margarita. Very, very tempting. [smile]

The highlight of the arts festival would certainly have to be stumbling across Estaban playing on Forth Street. Est-a-ban! Ahhh, that in-joke will never get old. Good times. The festival was extremely enjoyable today. A combination of the glorious weather, it being late in the afternoon and a little less crowded, and that there was a lot of new stuff we haven't seen before. Which is impressive given that we have made it out for every one since we've moved here.

Toad The Wet Sprocket @ The Marquee

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, March 25, 2011 - 11:12:40 pm
(Posted Under: Music Music)
Toad The Wet Sprocket at the Marquee tonight. Which was also my first show at the Marquee. We parked at Tempe Beach Park, and walked over. Walking over the Mill Ave. bridge at night was pretty nice. Funnily enough, on the north side of Tempe Town lake we could still hear the music from the Sail Inn. God, people that live by there must hate that place!

The Marquee turned out to be a cool venue, aside from the heat. Summer shows there must suck! Ran into Lance there, who mentioned the good sound and inclined floor which is great for "us short guys". Absolutely agreed on both accounts. The sound was great. And the best thing was the floor, which meant we were able to hang towards the bqck of the crowd and I still had a great view.

The Reign Kings opened, which was pretty cool for opener. An acoustic set, of which I knew pretty much all the songs. When it was billed as acoustic, I assumed it was going to be two of the guys, but it was indeed the full band. Closed out with the Counting Crows Rain king, which is apparently where they got their name.

Toad were awesome. I'd been looking forward to the show since we brought tickets, but was kinda tired tonight and somewhat going through the motions. All that changed when they took the stage. The set was kicked off with Something's Always Wrong, which is a hell of a way to start a set! And the hits just kept rolling. it was am awesome setlist. I don't exactly remember what they played when we saw them in Kansas City in 2009, but tonight's setlist seemed to be even better than that. There were 2 new songs which sounded really good. And the pick from Glen's solo project was Finally Fading, which was a sweet choice. There was a lot of banter about how long it'd been since they'd played in Arizona, and they were really well received.

After the show it was a forced march back to Tempe Beach Park to head over to Martini Ranch. Fucking Scottsdale! We got there at around 11:20, which was a bit later than we would have liked, but still okay - not accounting for parking in downtown Scottsdale! We drove around for pretty much the next 40 minutes trying to find a park, and doing drive by's Martini Ranch with the windows down to make sure they were still playing. That place is such a cluster fuck on a Friday and Saturday night. Ironically we got a park in the Martini Ranch parking lot right on midnight, pulling in just in just in time to see the band breaking down their gear through the window. Fail. Did notice Serafini in there, so I guess he and Lance successfully pulled of the Maquee to Martini Ranch plan, unlike ourselves.

So despite the brillant parking spot, we piled back into the car and went down to catch Tramps & Thieves at the Pink Pony. Which was our plan to do after the Black Moods anyway. A few blocks away parking wasn't an issue, and catching an hour an a half of Tramps & Thieves saved the night, and the trip to Scottsdale. We chatted to Scotty in between sets, and funnily enough we weren't the only people who had done the Toad The Wet Sprocket / Tramps & Thieves evening.

Firefox 4

Firefox Sync Looks Cool, But...

(Add / View Comments) (0)Friday, March 25, 2011 - 03:45:25 pm
(Posted Under: Mozilla Firefox)
Firefox 4 is out this week. Of most interest to me is Firefox Sync, for synchronizing bookmarks (and what not) naively across multiple installations of Firefox - of which I have many.

From the outset I'm not overly impressed. Primarily, the setting up of a local server for syncing is not all that straight forward, and certainly not well documented. Aside from all the requirements, including a PHP and MYSQL installed (not that I don't have that), plus a bunch of specific PHP modules enabled, it far from works out of the box. That, and the fact that client seems fairly brain dead at the moment, it really puts the simplicity of Foxmarks/Xmarks - which is simply just a webdav enabled web server - into perspective.

Hopefully this will become better throughout the life cycle of Firefox 4. But for now I'm happier to stick with my issue free Xmarks setup. Which also isn't a sparkling recommendation for me to rush to upgrade to Firefox 4. I'll probably migrate faster than I did to Firefox 3 [wink], but it ain't gonna happen this week.

A New Tempe Music Venue?

Tempe Tavern On Apache

(Add / View Comments) (0)Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 04:46:31 pm
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene)
Photobox ImageEvery time I've gone down McClintock over Apaoche I've noticed this place. It's kinda hard not to, it's a cool looking building. Over the past month a patio had been added to the front, which I thought was unfortunate, as it obstructs the view of the building. However, I read something last week that explained the change - the place is apparently opening as a live music venue. Yes, a live music venue in Tempe. That's pretty amazing.

Who knows what it's going to be like, but hopefully it'll means there will be a good music venue on Apache. I guess time will tell, but I did learn today that it's owned by the guy that owned Edcels, so that sounds like a good sign. Here's to hoping.

Guest DJ Week

(Add / View Comments) (0)Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 12:25:22 pm
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
It's been Guest DJ week on The Blaze. It's kinda amazing that I even got wind of it this year, because there is absolutely no advertisement for it anywhere. I guess no-one from the Phoenix New Times has a slot this year. [wink]

Without any information or schedule about who is going to be guest DJ'ing has been interesting. Listening to The Blaze for 8 hours straight over the past 2 days does confirm that there is a lot of crap out that is passed off as music. It's certainly has been a trying experience. However, finally the pain pays off - Lawrence Zubia up next. Thank god!

Grand Canyon

(Add / View Comments) (0)PhotosFriday, March 18, 2011 - 07:32:24 pm
(Posted Under: Travel, This Desert Life This Desert Life)
Great day at the Grand Canyon. Got out on the road by

Photobox ImageThe snow capped mountains on the way into Flagstaff were pretty impressive. We hit Flagstaff around 11, and stopped in town for gas and a few supplies before hitting the road again. Not before getting turned around and having to backtrack through the city to get back to the I180. Which was actually fine with me, seeing more of Flagstaff was cool.

From there, we made another shot stop where the 180 meets the 64, across from the Flintstones Bedrock Campground & Amusement Park. A bathroom break was needed, and hell, neither Katie nor I will pass up an opportunity to check out a travel plaza on the road. Even when the day is slipping away. [wink] We made it to the Canyon by 1:30, which was a little later than we'd planned on, but that was okay.

Photobox ImageDespite it being a month earlier in the year, hence still winter rather than spring, it was thankfully not as cold at the canyon as the first time we came. That was a major coop, and in that way made the experience a bit more comfortable than April 2005. If for nothing else, Katie didn't have to keep running back to the car. Definitely appreciated.

Photobox ImageDid the whole Martha's Point walk again, before driving out to Grand Canyon Village. With the intention of taking the shuttle to Hermit's Rest, to the west, a section of the south rim we haven't yet done. Given the time and the fact that it was a 75 minute round trip, we decided that it would be feasible if we wanted to also hit the east end of the south rim before sundown. A shame, because it'd be really good to do that. Next time around we need to stay overnight (at least) by the canyon and do that.

Photobox ImageStopped off at the gift store. Katie found this awesome glass box with a kokopeli and a saguaro presented it to me as something I needed. And she was right. After browsing, and checking the cafe to and determining there was nothing we wanted to eat, despite the hunger, and headed back to the car and headed out to east down Desert View. The trip out to the watchtower was longer than I remembered, but we made it out there while the sun was still out.

Photobox ImageThere seemed to be more accessible floors than I remembered. Maybe they were closed last time. Or maybe we just didn't have time. Either way, it was cool doing that this time. As it was to go out on the lower level roof. Again, something we didn't do last time. Weird.

Photobox ImageCertainly a good opportunity for photos up there. Trying out the 55-200mm lens blew me away taking the photo of the Colorado River. Holy crap, that's some zoomage right there. As always, so glad that I got that lens. Although we didn't quite hang out until sunset, pre sunset made for some cool photos.

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Sunset @ South Mountain

(Add / View Comments) (0)PhotosWednesday, March 16, 2011 - 09:11:56 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
Photobox ImageWe took Diana out for sunset at South Mountain tonight. Because of the long day, we didn't make it out until after 5:30, which made it a bit of a race to get to South Mountain and then to the top of it before sunset. But a race that we thankfully won.

As far as Arizona sunsets go, tonight was pretty average. And that's the funny thing about Arizona sunsets - even the average ones are still pretty spectacular.

Photobox ImageWe spent a brief amount of time up there after sunset. Comparing the photos of the valley after nightfall with the D5000 compared to the ones I've taken before with the Coolpix is remarkable. Given the results I'm certainly looking forward to doing that again when I have more time - and have taken a torch with me. [smile]

After South Mountain it was off to Teakwoods for dinner. Despite completely stuffing myself at Pete's for lunch, I had no problem demolishing a plate of Teakwood's nachos. Oh it was good. [smile]

Foo Fighters White Limo @ Zia Records

(Add / View Comments) (0)PhotosSunday, March 13, 2011 - 12:53:29 pm
(Posted Under: Music Music)
The Foo Fighters was making a stop at Zia this morning. Despite the hectic day we already had planned out, we had to make a trip down there, despite not really having the time to spare.

Photobox ImagePretty cool once we got down there. Last night was the first time I'd heard White Limo, or even knew that there was a new album coming out. I was somewhat surprised by just how aggressive the vocals in that were. With that said, it didn't take long listening to the new album in the parking lot at Zia's to realize that it's the exception to the rule, and the rest of the album is the typical Foo Fighter's awesomeness that they constantly deliver. The limo only just left California yesterday, with Tempe being one of it's first stops, so it was also pretty being one of the first people (relatively speaking) to hear the record.

Photobox ImageThe limo itself was pretty damn cool. And for all extents and purposes is the first time I've sat in a limo, let alone a 1970's Cadillac that the Foo Fighter's just shot a music video in.I've sat in a limo.

Midway through, a young guy pulled up, walked through the parking lot through the crowd, went into Zia and re-appeared with a Foo Fighter's CD. Which he them proceeded to public destroy in front of everyone, proclaiming that the Foo Fighter's sucked. Funnily enough, his damnation of the band was barely audible over the album being blasted from the limo. The crowning moment of this display, was when he then proceeded to pick up the pieces of the broken, CD, jewel case and ripped up sleeve, as not to get into trouble. So comical. Nothing accents a pseudo bad ass defiant display is cleaning up after yourself!

Of course, it defies logic (at least to me and Katie) how it's even possible to despise the Foo Fighter'sl enough to drive down to Zia. spend your money on what looked to be a double CD (admittedly at Zia it could have been used) and destroy it. Some bands sure, but Foo Fighter's? Whether you're into them or not, there isn't much there to really hate. But I guess there was for this guy.

Anyways, it was pretty cool ass. Although we didn't plan to, we ended up staying to hear the album in it's entirety, which sounds break good. And on top of everything else, there was a So Long Wong's t-shirt sighting. Cool!
Now Playing: The Strand - Conversation

Dia De Los Muertos Pot

(Add / View Comments) (0)Saturday, March 12, 2011 - 04:36:28 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
Okay, this weekend was mission "pumice" round two. Round one kicked our ass last weekend. We conquered round two this weekend however. Baker's Nursery in Arcadia was the answer. Not only did they have the smaller bags, but a larger one equivalent to 3 of the smaller ones, for 40 odd cents more than just one small one. Bargain.

Photobox ImageWhile there, we stumbled across this pot. Hello! I'll 'ave that! We're not entirely sure what we're going to use it for, but it was a hell of a find! Even the staff when we were paying for it were surprised it was part of their stock.

Much of the rest of the afternoon was spent looking at lizards. Actually, we really traversed the valley from south to north in light of that. But that's a story for another time, another place.
Now Playing: The Pistoleros - Brandy

Rock N' Roll Marathon Video

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, March 9, 2011 - 06:06:56 pm
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
Some video from January that I shot. Well, that Katie shot technically. It's the first time we've really tried out video on the D5000. It's a shame that auto focus doesn't work in video capture mode. And the audio was absolutely horrible, distorted six ways to Sunday. Though I didn't buy the D5000 for video capability anyway, so I'm not really complaining.

Thankfully I had the TASCAM rolling, and overlaid the audio from that to the video, which sounds great.

Hell this was a fun morning.

Now Playing: Ghetto Cowgirl - Don't Care

More Hacking Nikon's "Picture Project"

ODBC Connections To Access Databases in PHP

(Add / View Comments) (0)Wednesday, March 9, 2011 - 01:28:51 pm
(Posted Under: Development, Photography, PictureProject)
As a follow up to Hacking Nikon's "Picture Project", with a bit of playing around, amazingly I've been able to automate the entire process of moving photos onto network drives. The only missing part of the puzzle was updating the access database without screwing around with Access.

Using the ADOdb Database Abstraction Library for PHP, it's possible to create a connection to the Access database and manipulate the data from a PHP script. Pretty sweet, and it put's all the pieces in place for me.

The execution of a simple SQL query will relocation the file location.

UPDATE SourceTable SET Path='DST' WHERE Path='SRC'
Of course, with anything Microsoft, nothing is simple. "UPDATE SourceTable SET Path=Replace(Path, SrcPattern, DstPattern)", which would work if run directly in Access does not work with the ODBC drivers as the 'replace' function isn't available. Every row to update needs to be SELECTed, and then UPDATEd individually, with any text replacement done in PHP.

As far as I can tell it only works under Windows. It'd be convenient for me if there were ODBC drivers for Access under Linux. But with that said, I can absolutely make this work for me.

The Weird & Wonderful World Of Tempe

(Add / View Comments) (0)Sunday, March 6, 2011 - 07:29:22 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
We were at Home Depot this afternoon. Out to pick up some pumice for some cactus re-potting. It's supposed to be great for cactii. Though, even in cactii central (Arizona) it's not that easy to get your hands on, or so it would seem.

Anyways, as we were walking out, a bunch of guys cruising the parking lot yelled out to us, clearly from a hip hop band, trying to unload a copies of their CD, for a "donation". When I declined, the driver, hanging out the window quite seriously asked me why I didn't want their CD. Honestly? You're cruising around the Home Depot parking lot yelling out to strangers, from your car to buy your CD that they've never heard. Isn't the answer to the question obvious?

This certainly takes the whole DIY music thing to a whole new level. An insane one actually. And you know, on a Sunday afternoon the main contingent of people in The Home Depot were 60+ guys, with the exception of us and a few other younger couples. Of all the places to attempt this unsolicited self promotion of your hip hop band, The Home Depot parking lot on Baseline has got to be a tough sell.

You witness some loco shit in Tempe. But thus far, I think today's episode takes the cake as the most bizarre.

Desert Decore

(Add / View Comments) (0)Saturday, March 5, 2011 - 03:30:43 pm
(Posted Under: This Desert Life This Desert Life)
Katie picked up a groupon yesterday for the Botanical Gardens. Basically a pay $25, get $50 value type of affair.

Great deal, but once we got down there today, it quickly became apparent that we should have brought 4 (the limit) rather than 1. While $100 would have seemed like a lot, it would have been worth it for the $200 value, considering how much we eye off down there every time we go. But the $50 coupon did allow us to go ahead and get the other Lori Griffey Kokapeli glass vase that we wanted, and this Dia De Los Muertos picture frame we've had out eye one for some time now. And rounding out the $50 with a saguaro cookie cutter. Not bad value, given the vase itself was $34.

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(Add / View Comments) (0)Tuesday, March 1, 2011 - 10:54:11 pm
(Posted Under: Movies)
Second attempt tonight to see Rango went much more successfully tonight than on the weekend.

Katie had wanted to see it, and once I saw the ad for it a couple of weeks ago, I knew it was right up my alley. Though, 5 minutes in it had surpassed my expectations.

There are people who are really passionate about animated films. I'm not one of those people. I can appreciate them, sure, but I'm not one of those "buffs".

With that said, this movie spoke to me on a deep level. Johnny Depp, the south west theme and setting, an band of mariachi owls, many Hunter S. Thompson references. This film was written for me. Within the first 5 minutes of the movie, I was saying to myself "I need this on DVD". That's a first. It's actually annoying that the movie isn't released to the general public in the cinemas until Friday - because I want to go out at buy it on DVD tomorrow.

Awesome movie. Funny that we got the advance screening passes for free, because that's a movie I would have gladly paid to see.

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