August 4th, 2014


Around 27 years ago or so when my little brother was learning to talk and I was babysitting him very often I taught him that his name was "Idiot Child."  Seriously, I got him to introduce himself to strangers that way.

That seems like yesterday and makes it really weird to find out today that he's going to get married in October 2015.

The good news about that for me is that flights to New Jersey are much cheaper in October than in the Summer. The bad news - October and November weather in New Jersey is often awful.

Now I have to figure out how to structure my trip. To maintain my tax status I have to be in the US for less than 30 days. Obviously I want to maximize the amount of time there, so I have to figure out whether I should get in a couple weeks early or right before the wedding itself. There is no way to stretch it out to have me around for Thanksgiving.

Rome Girl, meanwhile, is going to be trying to find me temporary accommodation, hopefully in New York, so the availability of that may have a huge impact on my dates.

Those Crazy Canadians

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13 Sins

Downloaded this film tonight because Rome Girl is out at a birthday party and Fangoria said it's the best horror film of 2014 that's already out on DVD.

Imagine you think your life is going pretty well and you are about to get married. Then, you get laid off from your job. Suddenly your student loans are called  in. Your father gets evicted from his home and is going to move in with you.  You find out that your fiancee has run up a lot more credit card debt than you thought. And for insurance reasons your mentally handicapped brother is going to be kicked out of the private nursing home he likes and put out on the street. You think you might end up evicted and out on the street yourself. Certainly your fiancee won't marry you.

Then a dude calls you up and says he has 13 challenges for you. Each one will steal a little bit of your humanity, but each one will put more money in your bank account. The first challenge is to find a fly and kill it. That gets you five grand. How bad could it end up being?

The trick is that you can only walk away if you haven't heard the next challenge yet. You don't know how bad the challenge will be until you hear it. And you know it will get you hundreds of thousands of dollars if you do it. At what point do you give up and walk away?

What if you found out around challenge seven that rich people have been playing this game with people like you for a thousand years and the Lee Harvey Oswald was one of the players who lost the game?

How do you deal with this? That's what this movie asks. And while it's not perfect, it does give a reasonable answer to those questions.