Friday, November 24, 2006

Kid's Christmas Tree Goes Up

Ginger's parents had planned on leaving early today. Best laid plans and all that. They took the kids out with them this morning as they took the dog for a walk. It was good that the kids were able to get out some, the weather was really nice today. One thing led to another and suddenly all the women folk went out shopping. I know, I know, today of all days too, but Ginger needed to buy a birthday present for a party Quinn is going to tomorrow.

The reason we all didn't go shopping was because someone needed to be at the house in case the new TV showed up. We got the call this morning at 7 AM (and a big thank you for that, I needed the wake up call) that told us they would be delivering it today between twelve and four. Turns out it didn't show up before Ginger and the rest of them got back from shopping though. Soon as they got back Ginger's parents left for Richmond. They were concerned about hitting rush hour traffic if they waited too long. I explained that today was going to be one of the lighter traffic days as most people in the area have the day off, but they wanted to leave early anyway.

The new TV eventually showed up around three. And I can say this about it so far: "Me likey." The only thing bad about the television is that if you watch the HD channels then go back to the regular analog channels, it's a huge and very noticeable drop in quality. What's even worse is trying to watch TV shows from the TiVo that were recorded in analog at only medium quality (talk about your poor resolution). All in all though, the TV is pretty nice. I even found my self watching some nature show on WETA just because it was in HD and looked so nice. It may be that this actually causes the amount of TV I watch to increase (which to be honest, I'm not sure I thought was actually possible). The pessimist in me wonders how long until me or one of the kids does something that ends up breaking the new television. Anyone want to start a pool?

And since it's the day after Thanksgiving, we did our traditional putting up the kid's Christmas tree. The kids had lots of fun helping decorate it. And it turned out looking, well, like the kids had decorated it.

Finally, I got to see the new Bond movie Casino Royale last night with Ben and Ginger's brother JJ. The movie was really good. It was very much what I think a Bond movie should be. And much better than any other Bond movie I've seen (although I don't think I even bothered watching the last couple ones they made, and I haven't seen all of them). The intro sequence deviates from what I think had become standard Bond openings in that there's no silhouettes of naked women dancing while the open credits are playing. And while that has become associated with Bond movies, I always found it gratuitous and predictable since they all seemed to have to work it in somehow. One of the action / chase sequences in the beginning is a bit over the top and reminded me a lot of that crazy Russian climbing viral video that made the rounds a while back. The only real bad thing about the movie was the theater I had to see it in. For the time we wanted, they only had seats in the director's hall, a room where all the seats are leather (and specific seats are reserved), but other than that, I didn't notice a lot of difference between that theater and one of the normal theater rooms (except for the fact that the director hall room cost $3 more for a total of $12.50 a person, ouch!). All in all though, there's nothing in the movie that screams camp like there had been in so many of the recent Bond movies. And there's a ton of hat tips to older Bond movies. This seemed to be a serious take on the franchise (and I for one agree with the direction they've decided to take it) with a nod to what came before, but not feeling obligated to rehash it.

1 comment:

-s said...

I have an HD conspiracy theory, which I discovered whilst at my mother-in-law's house (she had two LCD HD monitors, one Sharp and one Sony.) With Comcast at least, I think if you subscribe to HD service, they purposefully and actively degrade non-HD channels. Non-HD channels looked awful, almost like you were using an antenna to get the signal. Of course the HD channels were great looking. The reason why I think there is a conspiracy is that we also have Comcast, and we have the same box as HD customers (but no HD tv), and the picture on our flat tube 27" looks much better than that of my mother-in-law's tvs on non-HD channels. (I also think HBO does something similar by showing the worst quality video on their non-HD channels -- like a bad DVD with all those pixels)

My other HD quip is when channels slip and use their HD feed for material (NFL Network does this alot.) Guess what? It looks great on my non-HD tv too! Nevertheless, I am yet to be incented to get an HD tv. Perhaps when our current one dies and we actually have time to watch movies and can take advantage of the 16:9 ratio.

Sorry for the rant!