Thursday, July 29, 2021

Tirana, Albania's pyramid

Two cool cars I spotted over the weekend

Hi. Remember me? Things are good on the home front, just super busy. I have not posted in a while. These are the cool cars I saw last weekend.

1. Lotus Evora GT.

C bought a Lotus! I got to drive it slowly around some residential streets. Better yet, I got to catch up with C. The last time I saw him was in April 2020, when I met him at a donut shop to buy him some toilet paper.

2. Chevy Volt rebadged (and re-skinned) as a Vauxhall Ampera. I spotted this at the local playground. Look what this mad man did to make a LHD Volt look like its British brother!

Here is what a Volt looks like here in America:

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Remembering Bourdain

I am still not over his passing. But with the new documentary out, I decided to finish watching his final season of Parts Unknown 1) to prepare myself emotionally for the movie and 2) to see what he was like in the months before his death. I'm up to the Indonesia episode (episode 3) and I must say you can see that he had already checked out. And in this episode, he talked about how he would die in a jungle, alone, and that he didn't care what they did to his body.

Yesterday, my son was at the bookstore and saw this book. I read it in an hour. It was a quick read. It's full of photographs of Bourdain at various exotic locales along with heartfelt messages left by fans, both famous and not.

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

"M3" wagon

This is a clever build and a beautifully made video.

Sunday, July 11, 2021

Indian food at American truck stops

We are going on a Route 66 road trip. More and more Sikhs are becoming truck drivers, so this development is not surprising. But it's still surprising.

Ainu museum in Japan

The Ainu are an indigenous people in northern Japan. A new museum has opened, to coincide with the Tokyo Olympics. It looks nice, but critics say there is no mention of the Ainu's plight or their treatment by the dominant Japanese population.

I met a couple of Ainu in California in the 1990s, when they came to support the Sinkyone people of the Lost Coast. Up until then, I had no idea they existed.

Median age by state


The most popular languages learned on Duolingo


Tuesday, July 06, 2021

Taliban making huge advances


Octopussy movie review

Terrible title, great movie!

Dave's review: Octopussy is one of the most creative Bond films. Maud Adams is stunning as the infamous title character and she and Moore have great chemistry. The story is first rate and unpredictable, starting with the stealing of a faberge egg, to Octopussy and her band of lady thieves, to a rogue Soviet plot to destabilize Europe. One of the most common critiques of the film is that the train sequence is too long, but after rewatching it it is a satisfying set piece with genuine intrigue. At the climax of it, you feel Bond is in real danger, something that can't be said a lot during the Moore era. India is also handsomely featured and the score is top notch. 

Dave's grade: A

TT's review: Octopussy was such a fun and cheeky movie. I had totally forgotten about the Tarzan yell. Too bad the title was so *groan*. I think my favorite part of the movie was the sidekick Vijay. I had no idea he was a professional tennis player. Does Felix Leiter count as a sidekick? Did Bond have any other sidekicks? The movie certainly didn't have much meaning or depth, but it was overall very entertaining.

TT's grade: A-

TT's reaction: I didn't think the train sequence was too long either. I also really enjoyed the fight on top of the airplane.

Dave's reaction: Vijay was great. Why can't more Bond sidekicks actually survive the day?