Exit Humanity

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We found another gem of a movie this past week, this time thanks to Netflix. Our Netflix que piles up overtime as we add odd and ends that look interesting. Classic films, favorite television shows, and some really bad horror movies. Occasionally we find something special, something that stands out among the crowd of films that Netflix offers. We had no idea how good this movie was going to be, fearing another bad horror movie we dug in.

There are a wide variety of zombie movies and series. A modern day mythos of end times in a world we are very familiar with. What makes this zombie movie stand out among many others is its setting. Not modern day or even this century. It takes place shortly after the end of the civil war. When pop-culture did not permeate the world. In a world still complex, but things like zombie were unknown. The first third of the film follows a father returned from the war to find this wife turned undead and his son missing. He struggles with this dilemma and his path in this now changed world. Narrated by the wonderful Brian Cox, the mood is spine-tingling, as the story unfolds from a man on the verge of suicide to a savior of a new love he discovers along his path.

If you have the opportunity to see this film, please do, its very captivating and a classic new take on a genre filled with lots of bad movies. This one stands out as one of the very best.

Fireflame

Strange night, was pretty tired to begin with but then starting thinking about my family. Its been a common thought of late. Living as far away as we do, we don’t get to see them but twice a year it seems. Their health has certainly declined since we moved to Texas. We’ve discussed moving back to be closer to them, but I struggle with those thoughts. Not wanting to give up our life here, going down the complicated path of  returning to Oklahoma. Those thoughts are countered by my parents declining health and the unknown duration of time they may have.

I feel for my mother greatly, knowing the strain she is going through. My sister who has her own complex life, it seems I may be the only one on a steady rock. An illusion I have mastered over the years. I’ve looked at jobs in Oklahoma, and while I’m sure I can find something the market is so small compared to where we are in Texas. I’ve been struggling with this and other life issues this year, with no resolution in site.

Financial Revelations

My wife was layed off a month or two ago so we have been eyeing out finances a bit more then normal, seeking ways to cut now so when her unemployment ends we are able to survive.

Its made me evaluate how I’ve paid things in the past and make a few changes to better reflect our financial cash flow. At first I was a bit scared and worried that my income would not cover our expenses. However, I did get a new job and pay raise during this same time. Not enough of a raise to offset the loose of her income, but the added income does help.

Now two months into closer monitoring and seeing where some minor cuts are helping, it does not look even close to dire like I was thinking it could be. We’ve cut back on eating out to only once a week. I’m bringing my lunch to work 4 times if not 5 times a week now. We cut some small expenses as well, and I can see additional areas to cut if needed.

As long as we have each other, as well as our cats, we will be good.

Finding Passion

Since I moved to Texas I’ve grown quite a bit, and left behind many of the passions I had grown as a child. These were left behind due to a number of reason, most notable cost of the hobby and just dwindling interest. For the longest time I would consider myself a man-child, and still am in some regards. I collected comic books, action figures, played video games, watched anime, read manga and much more. I think anime and manga was the first thing to go due to lack of interest. While I still occasionally watch something on Netflix, I certainly don’t keep on top of things and race after the newest series.

Comic books was the first major passion I gave up. After we moved to Austin, funds were a little more tighter and the cost of comics was going up as well as the sheer amount of related series. I started first by giving up Marvel and just reading the DC Universe. Batman has always been my favorite, but even that franchise got out of control. About 8 months after we moved to Austin, I decided to give it up. I stopped buying them outright. I would occasional get a graphic novel, and even that has dwindled. Though I did get the Walked Dead compendium this past Christmas, which I have yet to finish. I still have allot of comics, that I would like to get rid of, but their current value is not worth the effort to sell them. Its sad that you spend $3 on a comic book that you can’t even get $1 for on ebay.

My departure from comic books was quickly followed by my departure from action figure. The two are so closely related. I would often purchase Batman and video game related figure. I was able to sell most of the action figure I had, some where in original packaging, and I even made a profit on some items. This passion was easier to give up. I still have a few things. Most notable some Everquest action figures and a few Batman bobble heads I was unable to sell.

It took my a while to fill the void these passions filled, but the next big passion I have has been slowly dwindling since. Video games, are often associated with fans of comic books. At one point I was a huge Call of Duty fan, and I still yearn for classic 8-Bit Nintendo classics, but my free time has shrunk over the time, and games have gotten longer. I still play my Xbox on occasion, but often I find myself bored and disinterested in a game that looked so good. There have been countless times I’ve started playing a game, and was having a blast, to find myself loosing interest long before I get close to beating it. Time changes you as well. Borderlands a game I played endlessly, released a sequel that could barely keep my interest. I finally completed it, but it was not with the awe I had for the original. For the first time in my history, the dawn of a new console era is quickly approaching and I’m not sure if I’m interested enough to warrant the cost of a new console.

I have found a few new minor passions, but none of these match the passion I once had for comics and games. I am still a big Star Trek and Doctor Who fan, but aside from watching the current iterations, I don’t really collect anything from those universe’s. Which brings me to the conclusion that most of passions was all about having and collecting. A few years ago I started to try and live a more minimal life. Getting rid of things that just gathered dust, but at the cost of the only passion I’ve known.

I have picked up new habits during this time. I certainly drink more beer then before, and I do enjoy playing Dance games on the Kinect. I still watch quite a bit of television. And I’ve never been able to give up Everquest for too long, but even that world is a roller coaster.

I want to be more creative, to find a passion that doesn’t involve collecting things. I’ve thought about painting and plan to take a class at some point. I’ve tried to get back into doing more Photography. Writing, acting, brewing, anything to get me out of my shell and have some sort of creative output. I just need to take the first step, I just don’t know what step it should be.

Moonrise Kingdom

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I’m not really a fan of the repeated stories often shown in romantic comedies and love stories in general. Seeing adults fail at love is not entertaining to me, seeing them fall into the same pitfalls in each and every film with no new takes on the genre.

However, last night I think I realized for the first time that I do enjoy stories of young love. The innocence of two young people so infatuated with each other and seeing the world through new eyes. This realization came from seeing the film Moonrise Kingdom. I recall seeing the previews a year ago, as I placed it in the back of my mind to watch down the road. It premiered on HBO this past week so I DVRed so me and Jackie could watch it. Its a delightful film filled with the adventure of young love on a island between two individuals who have a signs of a troubled past, but at best are just misunderstood. Taking place in the mid-60s and filled with a great cast of well known actors. It has some hilarious moments as the adults try to find two missing children who embarked on adventure to be with each other. Culminating in a fake marriage ceremony and a storm that brings the adults together for the sake of these two children.

The soundtrack features a classical modern style that is addicting and relaxing. Its been a rollar coaster of a year so far, and after a crazy week of playing catch-up  this was a perfect mind relaxing experience for me. It spawned some internal emotions of younger times, and while I don’t think I ever experienced young love at this age(there was that redhead I had an infatuation with when I was in 3rd grade), it was reminiscent of the love that’s grown between me and my wife. It made me wonder what crazy adventures me and Jackie could have taken on with young eyes, if we had meet younger and where of similar age.

As adults its hard to see the world anew sometimes, but this film  allowed me to see the world anew through their eyes. In fact the idea of a camping trip to experience nature with Jackie and detach from this electronic world is very appealing right now. We do in fact need a vacation.

If you have the chance to see this film, I strongly encourage that you do.

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Moonrise Kingdom Soundtrack

Austin Texas Graffiti

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November 2012

Austin Oakwood Annex

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November 11, 2012

 

Old Dallas High School and Downtown Dallas

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Taken September 2012

Old Fort Dallas

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Taken October 2012