Monday After Xmas, or Happy Kwanzaa

I’m taking some vacation time, before heading back to a short work week. Looking forward to this Dick Clarkless New Year’s…? Hmm.

Still trying to get holiday cards done. Hopefully shall be done before this Friday.

Christmas Eve movie – “Meet the Fockers” – funny movie; Robert DeNiro, Dustin Hoffman, and Barbra Streisand – are all cool actors – very believeable as their characters. Some may say that the original movie, “Meet the Parents,” was funnier (since the movie tortured actor Ben Stiller as Male Nurse Greg Focker), but “Meet the Fockers” was harmless fun.

One nice Christmas/Birthday gift (well, at least I count it as a birthday gift, since it meant cashing in on the Barnes and Noble card that I had received) : “Star Trek: Duty, Honor, Redemption” – basically, a one volume compilation of the movie novelizations of “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock,” and “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home,” by Vonda N. McIntyre. These are absolutely wonderful Star Trek books, expanding on the movies with fan-beloved story threads that the films glossed over – how Lt. Saavik struggled as a half-Romulan/half-Vulcan person; how Drs. Carol and David Marcus’ Genesis project screwed up; and how McCoy and Spock dealt with having their conflicts more-or-less understood, since Spock needed McCoy to keep him “alive” and McCoy learned to understand Vulcans better. Oh, and Jim Kirk realized how much he loved a ship named Enterprise and how much he loved saving the universe. I can read this over and over. Highly recommended for big Trekkies/Trekkers.

It did occur to me – why the title of “Duty, Honor, Redemption”? Put together, the three movies (and the three novels) made a great epic, but whose epic? Kirk’s? The Enterprise? Spock’s? There’s the theme of life: birth, aging, and death; themes of love and friendship; theme of service and sacrifice. “Duty” – Kirk, the young cadets who died in the fight against the mad Khan, and, of course, Spock; “Honor” – well, Saavik and David certainly tried to face disaster with courage, while Kirk and the Klingons supposedly duked it out; “Redemption” – Kirk and Crew, branded as mutineers, become the Earth’s ultimate saviors by traveling back in time to get some whales. Well, the redemption part was a little shifty (who’s to say that Kirk wasn’t already redeemed by sacrificing his son and his career to save his best friend in Star Trek: III?), but I liked the series, I really do.

According to the NY Times, a Harvard Law School student’s blog
about a fictitious big firm law partner is apparently very popular. What’s really scary is that the readers apparently know it’s fiction, but still empathize and react as if it’s real. Hmm.

The sad impact of the tsunami in South Asia is still something to be analyzed, but I really find it sad that something like this could have been avoided with an alert system and mass communications. Acts of God are still stuff to amaze us all, but just because tsunamis are rare in certain parts of Asia doesn’t necessarily excuse the need to be prepared – just in case. Sad that it takes a tragedy to make us realize that.

There’s something about post-Christmas shopping that I prefer over pre-Christmas shopping. Maybe it’s that feeling of “Let’s buy what we really want” or the amusement of watching half-empty, messed up shelves with leftover Christmas stuff, or seeing big sale signs. Who knows.

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