Thursday, June 24, 2010

Group Appetizers=To eat or not to eat

How many times has the following scenario happened to you?

It's a nice Saturday evening and you decide to meet up with big group of friends for a meal.

Some of them you are best friends with and others are friends of friends.

As you are perusing the menu someone says one of the following

a.) "I'm gonna get an appetizer for the table to share."
b.) "Let's get a couple appetizers."
c.) "Does anyone want to get an appetizer?"

You kind of nod your head and the person who made one of the above statements orders an appetizer.

Once it arrives said person encourages everyone to

a.) "Dig in."
b.) "Have some"
c.) "Take a taste"

So you pick up one mozzarella stick or three tortilla chips.

45 minuets later the bill comes and suddenly the person who ordered the appetizer informs the group that

a.) "You each owe an extra 3 bucks for the appetizer."
b.) "That just you owes 4 dollars since you were the only person who had some of it."
c.) "That you owe $7.99" because said person wants to get out of paying for the appetizer completely.

You're blood starts to boil but somehow you end up saying "O.K." and fork over the extra $8.00 even though all you had was one lousy mozzarella stick.

You take a mental picture of the persons face who got you into this predicament and vow to never share a meal with them again.

Plants vs. Zombies

I'm a little late to the Plant vs. Zombies obsession.

Several of my friends have been telling me to download it for months now however truth be told I don't have very many apps on my iPhone.

I don't know why but I am extremely selective with my apps and only buy ones I know I am going to use.

Jeff knows this about me and surprised me one afternoon with an email saying he had gotten me Plants vs. Zombies.

Downloading it took forever (oh how I miss having fast internet in my home).

But I am officially obsessed.

The game is really fun and I think so far the Zombies have only eaten my brains 3 times and I've made it all the way to the rooftop levels.

I have no idea if there is any end in sight (friends let me know) but I'm really enjoying it.

For some reason I am most obsessed with planting the sunflowers.

I love having tons of sunshines pop up all at once even though it doesn't really help all that much.

This is the first game I have really loved playing on my iPhone.

Check it out.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Rosetta Stone Japanese

Jeff got me Rosetta Stone Japanese a few weeks ago and I love it!

I have an ear for foreign languages meaning I'm good at mimicking accents and the cadence of phrases.

I am however horrible at verb conjugation.

I've never liked learning foreign languages.

In high school I took 2 years of Spanish with an extremely boring and difficult teacher.

All I remember are her showing us slides of her in her younger years in Mexico and Spain.

At UVA I had to take Spanish everyday at 8 am for an entire semester and I'm pretty sure it was the worst grade I had in my entire college career.

Actually when I first got to UVA I was signed up for Japanese 101 but it was far too much of an undertaking to take on my fist semester in college.

Especially since UVA uses the immersion method in their language classes which means no one is allowed to speak English EVER!

I'll never forget when someone in the back of my classroom fainted and I yelled "Paul just fell over!" and my Spanish teacher snapped "Juana en Espanol."

Juana= the worst Spanish name ever.

So when Jeff presented me with the Rosetta Stone I was skeptical.

2 hours later I was convinced that I was actually Japanese and that my parents adopted me at a young age and forced me to learn English as a way of covering up my past.

I am loving the program.

I plug my iPhone Headphones w/ mic into my computer and start one of the sections of the program.

The basic concept of Rosetta Stone is that they teach you how to learn a language the way you actually learned your first language by looking at something then making the word association.

So I'll be looking at tons of different pictures of men and woman of a variety of different ages and repeating phrases attached to them.

Later I'll realize that I just learned how to say baby boy, baby girl, young woman, old man.

But what's so great is that the program doesn't shove it all down your throat it just kinda lets you realize things on your own.

Like I'll learn how to say apple by looking at a picture of an apple then later they will show a variety of different aged men and woman eating the apple and suddenly I'm conjugating verbs and remembering naturally how to say "The young man eats the apple." or "The old lady finishes the apple." Because I'm simply building on what I've already seen.

Amazingly I do all this without even trying it all comes very naturally if you pay close attention.

What else is cool is that somehow I'm able to retain everything.

The other day I started up the program again after a few days off and immediately remembered everything.

It even teaches me the Kanji characters and how to spell each of the words I'm learning.

It's a really great program if you ever have lots of time on your hands.

I'm not saying I'll ever be fluent but I feel like I'm actually learning a language for the first time in my life.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

TV & Movie Update

Dexter- I just finished season two and I can't wait for more. I never though in a million years I would like this show. I'm not big on police, forensics, type shows like CSI or Law and Order. I was surprised I loved The Wire as much as I did so I never expected to love another show dealing with crime scenes. Michael C. Hall is pretty much the best actor ever. He's right up there with Daniel Day Lewis in my book. He makes me love Dexter so much that I wish I knew him. I get really jealous when Dexter brings donuts to the office because I wish he was bringing them to me. I usually watch the show after I perform my shows and its around 1am and my mouth starts watering every time I see those delicious donuts. Dexter is a very morbid show dealing with huge moral issues and questions yet its also hilarious. I laugh so hard every episode. I guess The Wire was my main course and now Dexter is my dessert.

More Than A Game (or the LeBron James story)- Now I am a sucker for all basketball movie. Especially the documentaries like Hoop Dreams and The Heart of the Game. Jeff sat me down a few nights ago and had me watch the LeBron James documentary that came out recently and of course I loved it. It's a story about LeBron James and his 4 best friends sticking together through thick and thin to try and win as many national titles as they can from 5 grade till senior year. It's incredible to watch a group of people so driven and committed to the same goal. It really aspires me to work hard in everything I do.
Moonstruck- I can't believe it took me so long to see this film. It's a great movie. Say what you will about Nicolas Cage but there are certain films out there that he is just outstanding in and this is one of them. He brings such a uniqueness, almost an oddity to his line deliveries but it works so well for him and makes me laugh so hard. Cher does a great job as well. It's just a wonderful, fun-loving film.

Bullets Over Broadway- This is Jeff's favorite Woody Allen movie and I'm going to go ahead and say I think it's mine as well. What a gem! Outstanding performances by the whole cast and of course I'm a sucker for movies dealing with the theatre. I love Dianne Wiest and Jennifer Tilly but my favorite actor was Jim Broadbent as Warren Purcell the stage actor who couldn't stop eating. Every time he was caught noshing on something or would exclaim "I'm famished!" before devouring everything in sight I died of laughter. The script is absolute perfection.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Finely Sliced Apple

I have always loved fruits and vegetables.

But I've never been known to snack on them.

Then my friend Jaclyn taught me a trick.

Slice all your fruit and vegetables very finely.

Julianne them if you can.

Honestly to me it makes such a big difference.

A plate with huge blocky chunks of apples no thank you....but give them to me sliced paper thin and suddenly I feel like I'm eating chips.

I noticed recently how much I love summer rolls from whole foods and its for that very reason.

All it contains are julianne sliced cucumber, carrots and lettuce.

I have never been one for iceberg lettuce, suddenly my Mom hands me an iceberg lettuce salad chopped so finely a baby could eat it and I love iceberg lettuce.

Please try this at home and tell me if it works for you.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Big Buck Hunter

I've loved this arcade game since I was in college.

I'm finally getting good at it.

The cast hits up a local arcade in Maui weekly and it's there that I practice shooting moose and turkeys.

I'm starting to become that kid who says "Yes!!!" out loud every time I advance in the game.

I sound like Kevin from Home Alone.

Good thing the cast doesn't mind.

Look at them all playing games behind me.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Re: Ballet

I went ahead and bought ballet shoes and dance tights the other day since Megan and I have been consistently going every Saturday morning.

It's much easier to do pirouettes now.

Also this just'll never guess who studied at the same ballet studio Megan and I go to.....

You guessed it

Amanda Schull from Center Stage.

She's from Honolulu and started her ballet career at Hawaii State Ballet.

When I grow up I wanna be just like her!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Michael C. Hall & Jennifer Carpenter

I'm on Season 2 of Dexter and I'm really impressed with Michael C. Hall.

What I find myself obsessed with however is his marriage to Jennifer Carpenter who plays his kid sister Deb on the show.

That just adds a whole other layer to the show while I'm watching.

I think to myself "I wonder if they drove together to the set?" of "I wonder if they eat together on set?"

I hear they dated for a year and a half and no one knew then they surprised everyone and eloped.

They are an extremely private couple and that just makes me more obsessed with them.

I recently saw a quick interview on E where a brainless reporter questioned Jennifer about Michael's recent battle with cancer.

Jennifer immediately began to get choked up which I think caught the E reporter off guard and she quickly back tracked and said something like "I'm sure you're glad to have him all better."

And Jennifer said "Every second is special with him."

What a love story.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Slings and Arrows

3 years ago my friend Curt lent me his copy of Slings and Arrows Season 1.

Well I finally got around to watching it (sorry Curt!) and I absolutely love it.

The show is about a Shakespearean Theatre that is going through a lot of changes.

Slings and Arrows definitely has that Waiting for Guffman feel that us theatre lovers can relate to oh too well.

My favorite character is Ellen Fanshaw played by Martha Burns (below) who is the epitome of the annoying stage diva.

Oh I remember working with such a person on several occasions in my acting career.

I loved season one so much I have season 2 and 3 coming in the mail this week.

Its really great and funny so please watch it.

Thanks Curt!