Archive for August, 2009

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1 in every 1000? Ya don’t say…

August 28, 2009

CCTV cameras not helping anybody solve the vast majority of crimes – but certainly keeping people off the unemployment rolls…

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/6081549/One-crime-solved-for-every-1000-CCTV-cameras-senior-officer-claims.html

(I’m still doing screen captures of articles – but WordPress seems to smoosh the ones I post to illegiblity. If I figure out what I’m doing wrong, I’ll update the post…)

one crime in 1000

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Review: Going Home (Cerebus Vol. 13)

August 28, 2009

From Wikipedia:

First part of the story-arc Going Home. Cerebus and Jaka travel across land, then on a river boat. Cerebus is eager to make as much time as possible, as he fears being trapped in the mountains near Sand Hills Creek by winter, but instead he indulges Jaka’s desire for shopping and public appearances.

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(We also get a good look at Cerebus’ jawless mouth. Priceless!)

Along the way, they encounter veiled hostility from the Cirinists. Cerebus and Jaka’s relationship begins to show signs of deterioration, and Jaka is almost tempted away by F. Stop Kennedy (a fictionalised F. Scott Fitzgerald), a writer who has accompanied them on their river boat.

Frustrating, that’s what it is. The Fall and the River part of this volume should have been self-contained on its own, rather than shoehorned into the greater Cerebus story arc. Gorgeous art, well-written, but in my opinion, another digression…

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At least here, we get some depictions of the military (in earlier volumes, Sim would allude to divisions of pikemen or some such, but would never illustrate them…)

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Review: Rick’s Story (Cerebus Vol. 12)

August 24, 2009

From Wikipedia:

Eventually Jaka’s ex-husband Rick arrives at the bar. He has significantly aged, become a heavy drinker (he could barely tolerate alcohol in Jaka’s Story), and it is gradually revealed that the mental and emotional scars from the events at the end of Jaka’s Story have left him mildly insane. Rick is working on a book about his life, which gradually becomes a religious work in which Cerebus is a holy figure and Rick his follower. Joanne returns and taunts Cerebus by courting Rick. At the end of the book, Rick departs, for reasons not entirely clear, and tells Cerebus that he will see Rick only once more in his life. After Rick has left, Jaka shows up at the bar, and she and Cerebus depart together, heading for Sand Hills Creek.

Yet another interesting digression from the “main” plot line.  Look – even Sim realizes that the story line might be getting too esoteric for the average reader…

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And, finally, the “jump the shark” moment for me – Sim puts himself graphically into the narrative…

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And more fantasy elements as well, which dropped me right out of the narrative…

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Can Sim recover me with some sort of Hail Mary Pass through the last volumes of the narrative? Stay Tuned…

Plus – I’ve been reading ahead (on Going Home right now) and found this passage in the notes at the back…

Part of my ongoing experiment to incorporate text pieces into a comic book story so that the reader actually reads them instead of skipping over them…”Oh shit. Do I really have to read all THIS?”…Yes, Dave, you have to read all one page of it.

Chasing Scott (notes on Fall & The River, Going Home, third printing August 2000)

The only problem being – there’s more than just one page of it.

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When adding text like this (I would say), don’t go in for lengthy passages like this, especially if they’re in faux-King James or what have you) and distill the essence down to the really important stuff. Just because you have 6000 pages to fill doesn’t mean that you have to bore the reader.  Especially when you’re using this as a plot point for the rest of the story…

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Review: Inglourious Basterds

August 24, 2009

Just a quick one – What an attention whore Tarantino is!  Not content with making a ripping good (if a little overlong) WW2 picture, he’s gotta throw the historical revisionism in there!

I won’t say what that revisionism is, but in my heart I know it’s there because it wouldn’t be brilliant Tarantino if it hadn’t.

AND MORE (INVISO-TEXT): As to the “Jewish Revenge Fantasy” angle – how wouldn’t that work if the Basterds hadn’t killed Hitler, but some fictional Nazi group instead?  It will be intersting if T. goes all in for the rest of his filmmaking career with his own mythology.  Not that anybody hasn’t done so before, but this would be the first time for a major director to do so…

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What to bring to Appleseed Shoot (addendum)

August 17, 2009

Beyond this list here:

http://www.appleseedinfo.org/pdf/what_to_bring_shoot.pdf

Here’s some stuff I think I could have used on my last Appleseed:

A small set of binoculars (you’re not allowed to check your target after each course of fire – this might help to check your NPOA easier)

Some sort of cover for your rifle during the lunch break (my rifle got mighty toasty in the sun)

A Shamwow-sort of product (for putting water on, and putting on your head in the hot, hot sun.)

A proper shell extractor for your rifle (there was a guy down the firing line who had to keep extracting shells with a collapsible cleaning rod)

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Appleseed RESET – #1 (2009)

August 17, 2009

I had forgotten just how exhausting an Appleseed was. Don’t get me wrong – it was fun as well, met some great people, re-dedicated myself to getting that Rifleman patch (3 people got it yesterday, if I recall correctly).

It’s just the stand-to-prone, stand-to-seated, prone only, over and over again, at Rifleman’s cadence, on knees and elbows already rubbed raw, in the heat.  “Draining” seems to be a word that’s too limiting, even though we all were keeping hydrated throughout the day.  And I also understand why we were doing this – the training under stress would be a great help if we ever had to use the skills we were building – still: I don’t believe I was doing myself any favors by sticking around to the second day.

However – I finally learned how to make the damned loop sling this time, and managed not to shoot any targets but my own.  I’ll have to do some serious study on my own for a good long while now.

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Appleseed Pt. 16

August 13, 2009

It took me a while to write about this, but I thought it was a strange enough phenomena to commemorate…

Went out to zero my rifle for the Appleseed in Bristol happening in 2 days – just for giggles, I decide to turn a new target over and stick a high contrast dot on the back to see what would happen…

8-7-09

 

My group immediately tightened up (that circle is about 2 1/2″ in diameter). 25 yards, offhand.  Of course I’m rushing the shots sometimes and still anticipating the recoil, but I think I’m going to do a lot better at the Appleseed this time…

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