I recently watched the award-winning short film Skin and Bone and thought it was great. Especially when I found out that it was made for only $500! The film spends a day in a hectic critical cardiac care unit in New England and ends up with some very surprising results along the way. I don’t want to give too much away, so if you want more, I’ve included the trailer at the bottom of this page.
The creators of the movie, Philip M. Magcalas and Lucy Harrison are medical students a little farther along than I am and the idea of filming, producing, editing and showing this kind of short film all throughout medical school just baffles my mind, both are very smart cookies.
I just got word that Skin and Bone has been released for sale on DVD now for only $7.99 and I wanted to help get the word out. I’ve already ordered my copy and with recent events regarding the Haitian earthquake, they have decided to donate a portion of all their proceeds to help bring aid to Haiti.
After living my entire life in NYC, I went to college in Washington DC and have traveled back and forth every possible way imaginable, by car, bus, train and plane. I used to be able to get one way flights for $41(!) as a student, but that Delta Shuttle deal didn’t last too long and more recently, I’ve mainly just taken cheap buses (like Washington Deluxe) when I’ve wanted to take trips to either Boston or back to Washington DC, where most of my friends are living at the moment.
I was talking with my grandfather today and he told me to check out the NY Times, they reported on 3/25 that two different companies announcing their new bus lines by offering trips between NYC and Boston/Washington DC for… $1!The two companies are BoltBus (a division of Greyhound) and MegaBus (part of Coach USA) and both will offer new buses with more comfortable seats, more legroom, free wireless internet and electrical plugs for your personal electronics (laptops, cell phone/mp3 chargers, portable dvd players, etc).
To get the $1 fares, you need to reserve your tickets online, two weeks in advance, from their prospective websites, but Megabus.com wants to make an even more enticing offer, if you make reservations to travel between May 30 and June 5, they’re offering free tickets! I think I know where I’m going to be heading for the next couple of long weekends now!
*September 9th Update* This past weekend I got back from a day trip to Philadelphia. I took Bolt Bus down to Philly from NYC and MegaBus back to NYC later that night because of scheduling. If you have the option, DEFINITELY choose Bolt Bus over MegaBus EVERY time. Bolt Bus left on time and arrived early, with comfortable seats that had 110volt plugs for electronic devices. In contrast, on the ride home, I tried to catch the earlier bus than the one I originally scheduled, only to find out that that earlier bus never arrived (even though Megabus’ customer service telephone agents kept saying that the bus would be arriving soon) and the dozen or so people who were waiting for that earlier bus had to wait over 2 hours to get on the last scheduled bus for the night. Suffice it to say, that later bus was not as comfortable and didn’t offer power plugs for passengers, since this was an older Coach USA bus. Considering that I paid the same rate for both Bolt and Megabus, Bolt was a vastly superior experience.
After watching the latest episode of Geekbrief.tv, I had to find the latest video released by technology firm Boston Dynamics, in which they were showing off their most advanced quadruped robot, Big Dog, which moves in such an amazingly fluid way. It is able to walk up a snowy hill, along a rocky path, along a sheet of ice and even be kicked HARD by a person, all the while, maintaining it’s balance and not falling down.
It’s both amazing and a bit scary to watch. This project was supported by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). I can’t hardly believe just how advanced robotics technology has come, this robot can even do this while carrying a payload larger than its own weight. The most impressive moments are at 35 seconds, 1:25 and 3:06 minutes (which are based on the youtube version of the video) into this three and a half minute video.
The New York Giants were 12 point underdogs coming into Superbowl 42, but after 2 4th quarter touchdown passes by Eli Manning, the Giants defeated the (previously) undefeated New England Patriots 17-14!
The game was low scoring, but back and forth the entire time. The Pats played a good game, but the Giants‘ defense, with all the sacks and knockdowns of Tom Brady was just too much and they ended up with one of the biggest upsets in recent Superbowl history.
As I’m writing this, I can hear the celebrators at the local bars down the street, as well as all the truckers celebrating with horns blaring as they drive down the street. The office is going to be interesting tomorrow.
I just hope that with the parade for the Giants scheduled for (Super) Tuesday, that it does not lower voter turnout. I think it could hurt turnout for a candidate like Obama. I’m not voting for him, but it would be too bad if the Superbowl hurt his chances here in NY.
Film Racing is a contest that seems to have started around the idea of getting people to get off their butts and just start creating films, no matter how much or little money they had. They started out by having contests where entrants were tasked with creating a 3 minute (max length) film in a 12 hour time span. Now, they have a Film Racing Grand Prix where you have 100 hours to put together a 4 minute movie. Each film team is given a theme and a surprise element they need to use in their film.
This is an extremely interesting concept, you can go here to see some examples of films that have already been submitted.
Thanks to BoingBoingTV for spreading the good word about this contest. The film above is called Eggsistence and was created in <12 hours, their theme was “a fortune” and their surprise element was they needed to use an “egg.”
This movie has a wonderful cast, Reese Witherspoon, Meryl Streep and Alan Arkin. It is really too bad though that none of these actors really plays a big role in the film, essentially, each is given only one major scene to shine in. Also, I didn’t even think Streep gave a strong performance either (sorry Tara, please don’t kill me for saying that), which was disappointing.
The movie deals with time in an interesting way, but it’s too bad that the story itself, especially the B-story with the two arabic speaking teens isn’t terribly interesting.
I really don’t recommend that anyone see this film, just avoid it and forget it existed in the first place. I just hope Streep‘s next film, Lions for Lambs turns out better… oh, I just looked up the director of this film, Gavin Hood and at this point it looks like he’s set to direct the upcoming X-Men Wolverine movie set for 2009, hopefully he does better with that, especially since Wolverine has always been my favorite superhero characters.
For the AL, at least, the season is over and all the playoff matchups have been set. Even though I thought the Yankees had a good chance of catching up to the Red Sox, in the end, Boston played better ball and won the division.
That being said, seeing how the rest of the American League matchups turned out, with Cleveland surging ahead in the end of the season to tie for the best record in the majors with the Red Sox (mind you, EVERY AL team entering the playoffs has a better record than ANY of the teams in the NL!). This means that the Yankees will play Cleveland and the Red Sox will face the Angels in the first round since the wild card team cannot play their division leader in the first round of the playoffs.
It may be early to say this, but these matchups seem to favor another AL Championship Series between the Yankees and Boston! For Boston, it doesn’t really matter, they have been the best team, the team to beat all season and have winning records during the regular season against both the Angels (6-4) and the Indians (5-2), with the Red Sox doing very well at home against both teams (5-2 vs the Angels and 2-1 vs the Indians), it bodes well that they have home field advantage.
The biggest difference is for the Yankees, they have a MUCH better record against Cleveland (6-0) than against the Angels (3-6!) this season. This pattern isn’t just this season either, for the past 6 regular seasons, the Yankees went 29-13 against the Indians but only 25-29 against the Angels. Plus, the last two times the Yanks faced the Angels in the 5-game first round of the playoffs, the Angels won 3-1 (2002) and 3-2 (2005).
None of this actually means both Boston and the Yankees will win their 5 game series’, but this is definitely a much better situation for the Yankees than if they had to face the Angels (even with Cleveland getting home field advantage over the Yankees) and I think both Yankee and Red Sox fans look forward to seeing another GRUELING playoff series between these two teams this year!