Saturday, August 21, 2010

My latest techie purchase....

So this week I decided to take the plunge and get a little device from ROKU to stream Netflix movies. Fairly cheap, only about $90, and now I can watch all of their "PLAY instantly" movies on those nights when I can't find anything to watch on my over 100 other channels I subscribe to on satellite. (That's sad, really...I'm such a movie addict!)
The ROKU came in yesterday (2 days after ordering! wow!) so I hadn't had time to confess my purchase yet. Yikes!
Long story short, John installed it last night.  Fairly easy.  The first movie I had to give to John for his understanding and installation fee -- and of course he chose a John Wayne movie.
Now I have to sit back and find out what this little device does to my little "band width" problem I have with my internet supplier...I'm always getting little reminders from them about exceeding my limit.  Sigh...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Movie Review --- Brooklyn's Finest

Great cast, really...Cheadle (love him!), Snipes (great!), Hawkes (meh..) and Rat Man (oops... I mean Gere.  But really, look at those front teeth). So, I'm left wondering why ANYONE would live in Brooklyn.  I'm just sayin....

What I'm Reading....

Listening to The 9th Judgement by James Patterson right now.  It's the newest addition to the Women's Murder Club series, and its the most horrific yet.  I just love a good murder mystery!

If you haven't read (listened to?) any of the Women's Murder Club books, you're missing a treat.  Linsey Boxer is a San Francisco detective, and she's gathered a group of women that meet to discuss cases and that in turn helps her solve them.  I feel like I know these women personally after reading all of this series.  You get glimpses into their personal lives and learn to like them, care about their fates.  I guess that's the mark of a good author, isn't it?

From 1st to Die, 2nd Chance, 3rd Degree (you get the idea...) to this latest novel, I dare you to put them down.  On the way to work this morning, Linsey was on the San Francisco bridge in only pink panties with a copy of the San Francisco newspaper clamped to her chest, so I can't wait to get back in the car this afternoon to find out how she gets out of that pickle....

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Battle at Little Big Horn

Of everywhere we went on this vacation, this place affected me the most.  You can't help but feel the awesome waste of human life here.  Our park ranger who gave us the talk about the park was beyond ex history teacher and coach (30 years) who is now doing this as his retirement job.  He was truly excellent - he used a booming voice to talk about the culture clash that made up the heart of what went wrong here. He emphasised that this was war.  Not pretty, no way to make it pretty.  He didn't spare the children in the audience, either.  He told how killing the enemy, the Indians mutilated the bodies, believing that this kept them from entering heaven.

Custer, Reno, and Benteen along with Crow Indians for the cavalry against Lakota Sioux and Cheyenne Indians under the leadership of a medicine man by the name of Crazy Horse. Custer and Crazy Horse were very similar personalities - they both had survived many battles without a scratch, and may have thought that they were invicible because of it.  All of the cavalry officers hated each other and were jealous of each other -- therefore they all wanted to be the hero of the day.  The Sioux and Cheyenne hated the Crow Indians.

After the talk by the ranger, we walked up to the monument at the top of the hill where the battle raged.  There are marble headstones sprinkled and scattered down all sides of the hill, stretching out as far as the eye can see.  These mark where soldiers and warriors fell defending their way of life.  It was solemn, quiet -- despite all of the visitors there.  We all stood taking it in, listening to the lite wind blow across the hillside.  Eerie...sad...agonizing.  Then we walked all around the monument reading the names of the soldiers and citizens who died there.  At some point, they all had to know that they were going to die - they even shot their horses to use them as breastplates (or shields) against the Indian's arrows. 
Then we drove over to the other battle site where the Reno and Benteen commands were attacked.  The rise and fall of the land here gave both sides in these battles gullies and washes to flee to, but I believe the Indian nation knew the land better than the soldiers.  More marble headstones.

If there's one place everyone should see when you go to Montana, this is the place.  There was right and wrong on both sides of this battle, and both sides were fighting to continue their own way of life.  No winners here.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Our beautiful neice!

My neice, Andi, just spent 25 days camping (some primative!!!) throughout Texas and a couple of adjoining states.  The trip was part of some classwork through her university, UTSA, in San Antonio.  She claims that she's back and survived the ordeal.  By the looks of her picture here (she's the tall one with the sunglasses), she had some fun.  I don't know...I saw several pictures with wildlife including (shudder...SNAKES!)

Now, if college had been this much fun back in 1970, I might have stayed around...

Deadwood, South Dakota

After Mount Rushmore, we had absolutely no plans except to visit our good friends, John and Mari, at their vacation home in Wyoming.  But since they wouldn't be in residence until Wednesday night, we had a few days to kill. 

So we went to Montana to see the sights, via Deadwood, South Dakota.  Now this town has really come together to maintain the lawless, wild west atmosphere that gave it its' name.  We started at the renovated train station down town and moved to Main street.  The town council has launched a renovation of the entire downtown to maintain the western theme, and to update the infrastructure (water, power, etc.) to many of the original buildings.  They've done a great job.  We thoroughly enjoyed the day.  Gambling is "a okay" there, so they have a lot of saloons with gambling, tourist shops, shops for bikers and tourists alike.  Lots of fun.

We drove up to see the gravesite of Calamity Jane and Wild Bill Hickock.  They weren't married, but she asked to be buried near him when she died.  

A neat town, I recommend a visit!