Monday, December 30, 2013

Highlights from 2013

Some of my highlights from 2013 include meeting some Hall of Famers, basketball coaches, and notable Kentucky sports figures in general.

Wade Boggs:

Dick Vitale:

Joe Morgan:

John Calipari:

Joe B. Hall:

Matthew Mitchell:

Larry Vaught:

Oscar Combs:

Friday, December 27, 2013

Paging Landmark Theatres...Louisville needs a REAL art house theater

I've reached the point of utter discontent with the Baxter Avenue Filmworks movie theater.  On it's website, it states that they offer first-run, foreign, and independent films.  However, I depend on them to be playing indie movies as they are the closest thing to an art house theater that can be found in Louisville, Kentucky.

Unfortunately for the city of Louisville, an art house they are not.  This is where I appreciate a theater chain like Landmark Theatres.  They actually give a damn about the movie-going public.  I prefer to see indie films in theaters, not at home on DVD.  But I don't have a choice.  I live in the East End and it's not as easy to get to Baxter as it is to get to Cinemark Tinseltown, just two lights away from my house.

If you look at Landmark's offerings in a market like Indianapolis (NFL, NBA), they still have movies like Nebraska playing.  But in Louisville, Nebraska opened on December 13th at the Baxter and on December 25th, it was no longer playing in town.  I had planned to see it on December 26th, only to be disappointed that the movie, directed by Alexander Payne and starring Bruce Dern, was no longer playing.

It's sad that a film, likely to be nominated for Best Picture, Actor, Supporting Actress, and maybe Supporting Actor, is only playing in Louisville for 11 days.  It makes zero sense.

Of the five nominees in the Independent Spirit Awards, you could only catch four of the five in Louisville because Short Term 12 never opened here.  Amongst other notables, the city of Louisville is not a large enough market to have a film like Inside Llewyn Davis yet.

The city of Louisville deserves a real art house theater because Baxter just isn't up to being the art house theater that the city of Louisville needs and that, my friends, is a damn shame.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Book Review: Paddle Your Own Canoe by Nick Offerman

Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Dutton Adult (October 1, 2013)

This fall, Nick Offerman released his memoir in the form of Paddle Your Own Canoe: One Man's Fundamentals for Delicious Living.  You know Offerman best as Ron Swanson from the NBC sitcom, Parks and Recreation.

While Offerman has played comedic roles in the past several years, this is not a straight-out laugh-out-loud book.  Far from it, actually, even though he tells it in his trademark comic wit.  Offerman does mix in some amusing anecdotes, opinionated lessons and rants but he would tell you that he is "your average meat, potatoes, and corn-fed human male, with a propensity for smart-assery, who has managed to make a rewarding vocation out of, essentially, making funny faces and falling down."

The character of Swanson, we learn, is loosely based on himself.  Offerman goes into details on what it takes to grow the Swanson mustache.

Offerman didn't become a hit overnight.  He grew up in Minooka, Illinois, on a farm and made his way to the University of Illinois, where his acting education became the foundation for the guy we know today.

From his days in Chicago, he tells us what it means to pull a "Schwimmer."  What is pulling a Schwimmer?  It's going west to Los Angeles for the TV and Film roles.  Had he not pulled a Schwimmer, he never would have met his wife, Megan Mullally.

Each chapter of the book tells a story of his life while being accompanied by his opinions and fundamental advice.

Readers will most certainly be delighted by the book and maybe stay away from their phones for a while.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Put THANKS back in Thanksgiving!

Maybe it's time to put the THANKS back in Thankgiving and be grateful to spend time with family eating a meal and watching TV/movies rather than trample/shoot/stab people while shopping and fighting over a parking spot.

Be thankful for what you have and hug your loved ones. There should be no reason at all to spend the bulk of Thanksgiving in cold weather by camping outside of stores. That's not the right way to spend the holiday.

There's no reason for camping out on Wednesday night and skip Thursday's holiday at all.  And for what?  A doorbuster deal?!?  Insane.

I spent my Thursday with family.  On our way to what has become a Thanksgiving Day movie, I glanced over at the Best Buy across from Mall St. Matthews.  There were tents set up before 12:30 PM.  It was not warm outside either.  After the movie ended and we drove by around 3:30 PM, the line was even longer and stretching around the corner.

Listen, I love a good bargain and all but it's not worth it to wait in line on a holiday that was meant for giving thanks.

To those idiots that call for Thanksgiving to be moved into October so that the holiday season could be extended, I say no.  The Jewish holidays are reserved for September and October.  Sometime, like in 2011, they spend most of it in October.  Game 162 of the 2011 season coincided with Erev Rosh HaShanah so most of my October was spent observing the Jewish holidays and not watching my beloved St. Louis Cardinals play in the postseason.