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Archive for the ‘pop culture’ Category

Well, at least I think so.

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When I saw the pic of Owen’s chin (the one Emily featured a couple posts ago), it instantly made me think of another notorious character who wasn’t afraid to stick his chin out. Just sayin’.

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is it weird…

…that I’ve watched this trailer probably 10 times over the past few weeks, and it still gives me goosebumps every time?

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As you may or may not know, the fam has an annual March tradition of filling out our NCAA brackets…even if you can’t read, spell, or even speak. Owen and Molly have both been filling out brackets since year 1, and this year was no exception. The problem is we’ve just been kinda busy, and I’m not even sharing our picks with you until the Sweet 16 is underway! But I’m proud to finally announce our Final 4 picks!

But first, it should be noted that O-man called the Morehead State over Louisville upset. He also has Arizona winning it all, and considering how 5 minutes ago they concluded an unexpected pounding of Duke, the boy is looking sharp. Also of note is Molly’s correct Cinderella prediction of Richmond going to the Sweet 16 (if only her pick of Oakland beating UCSB in the final game was so good!)

Drumroll, please…

Emily: Ohio State, Duke, Kansas, Florida, with OSU over KU in the final game.

Travis: Syracuse, Duke, Kansas, Pitt, with KU beating Duke in the final (and yes, I hate myself for picking KU – fellow Mizzou fans, please forgive me).

Owen: Xavier, Arizona, Georgetown, Gonzaga, with Zona over Gonzaga in the final.

Molly: North Carolina, Oakland, St. Peters, UCSB (clearly, the girl likes the underdog), with Oakland beating UCSB in the final.

So, to date, Emily is looking like she’s in the best shape with 3/4 Final Four teams left, including her final 2.

Owen and I both have 2/4 Final Four teams.

And Molly has 1/4. But hey, anything can happen…

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So it’s no secret that O-man loves Star Wars. In fact, he quite often requests that we play John Williams’ Star Wars soundtrack to accompany his playing in the basement (something I used to do myself as a child).

Owen’s favorite song is Duel of the Fates from Star Wars: Episode I. If you can’t recall it, give it a quick listen here.

Now, here’s what’s fun: when Owen listens to Star Wars music, so does Molly. And to Owen’s delight, Duel of the Fates is her favorite track, too. In fact, she often sings it during bath time – and then Owen joins in with her, and before you know it, we have our own little sci-fi choir. And friends, we’ve got the video to prove it (note: it REALLY starts to get good around the :45 mark).

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the year in movies

Emily and I did something I never could’ve fathomed in 2010/early 2011. It surprises me…shocks me…overwhelms me to announce that we saw 9 out of the 10 Academy Award Nominees for Best Picture!

Ever since we had the kiddos, going to the movies (one of our favorite pastimes as a couple) has been a bit of a challenge. But thanks to some lucky timing, earlier-than-usual DVD releases, and accommodating grandparents/babysitters, we’ve seen everything except 127 Hours – and who knows, we still have a couple weeks until Oscar Night, so we might be able to go 10 for 10!

Now, if you know me, I’m a list nerd. And I feel that the “10 best movies of the year” and one’s “10 favorite movies of the year” are very, very different.

Emily and I both agree that The Social Network was the best movie of the year and should bring home the gold on Oscar Night. The morality story exploring the themes of ambition, success, jealousy and friendship was so well told. The pacing, music, dialogue and cinematography was crafted together almost perfectly (Fincher should win Best Director and Sorkin Best Adapted Screenplay, in our humble opinions). The acting was pitch perfect. And the timeliness of its making was pretty gutsy (Zuckerberg’s not even 30 yet!)

Now, that does NOT mean that it was our favorite movie of the year. It’s up there, but Em and I both agreed that The Fighter was our favorite movie of 2010. Just when you think you’ve seen every kind of boxing film, this one came in and – caution, terrible pun coming – knocks you on your seat. We loved the complex relationships between the characters/family, the way you as an audience member feel like you become part of the town of Lowell, and how you love and are frustrated by Christian Bale’s Dicky character simultaneously throughout (Bale definitely deserves the Best Supporting Actor Oscar). The fact that there’s really very little boxing in it shows how good of a movie it really is, as it doesn’t rely on inside-the-ring action to keep you engaged.

Okay, so you got our “Best” and our “Favorite.” However, our “favorites” list starts to differ a little bit in order. Without further adieu, the winners are:

10 FAVORITE MOVIES, IN ORDER

Travis:

  1. The Fighter
  2. True Grit – loved the original, loved the new one.
  3. The Social Network
  4. Inception – Brrrrrrraaaaahhhhmmmm!!!!!!!
  5. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World – this one’s also not for everyone, but if you’re a video game/comic book/superhero geek like me, it’s nirvana.
  6. Black Swan – not for everyone…I’ll leave it at that.
  7. How To Train Your Dragon – I’ve seen it about 17 times now, and while it may not be a popular opinion, I think it was better than Toy Story 3. There. I said it.
  8. Toy Story 3 – I did really, really like this one, though.
  9. Winter’s Bone – they nailed rural poverty. Which is pretty depressing.
  10. The King’s Speech/The Town/Shutter Island – I liked them all and can’t decide which to pick because. Call it a cop out. I don’t care.

Emily:

  1. The Fighter
  2. Twilight: Eclipse – really? Really.
  3. The Town
  4. The King’s Speech
  5. True Grit
  6. Shutter Island
  7. Toy Story 3
  8. The Social Network
  9. Black Swan
  10. Winter’s Bone

And there you have it. We can’t wait to hear how much you agree and disagree with us.

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WE are the champions

You may recall this post from a few months back in which Emily was introduced to the world as a fantasy football juggernaut. Well, here we are, after 15 hard fought weeks, and I’m proud to announce that EMILY DID INDEED WIN THE LEAGUE in her rookie season, handily defeating league veteran/commissioner Macgruden (my buddy Beau) 112.06-79.42. It’s also of note that she knocked me out of the playoffs in round 1 (we had played twice in the regular season, splitting wins).

It’s a bragging rights league, meaning no cash, but the league is named after the previous season’s winner. Seeing that I won the league last year, there’s no one I would rather pass the name on to than the wife. Here’s a look at her championship roster:

Now, as the title indicated, I’m a winner this year, too. In my work league’s inaugural season, I brought home the fantasy bacon, earning us $175. My guys only brought in 102 points in the final, but it was enough:

And so, with the fantasy season behind us and the real world playoffs beginning (Go Chiefs!), all we can do is look forward to next season and our opportunity to defend our respective thrones.*

*between you and me, I’m planning on reclaiming my title in our mutual league and putting Emily back on the bench.

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A Toy Story themed bath towel, of course.  Leave it to Walmart to make everything into a Toy Story theme…from mac ‘n cheese to fishing rods, they’ve got it all.  (And we are now proud owners of quite a few items from their collection.)  Nana can’t pass up an item that has one of her grandchild’s favorite movie characters…so Owen now gets to be Buzz Lightyear as often as I can keep this towel washed…which is not often enough, according to him. 

And Molly, well, she loves Toy Story because her brother loves Toy Story.  Owen tells her often that she gets to be Jessie because Jessie is a girl and Molly is a girl.  (He’s VERY into identifying who belongs to the male sex and who belongs to the female sex.  “I’m a boy and you’re a girl, Mommy.  Daddy and me are both boys, Mommy.  Molly and you are both girls, Mommy.  Max is a boy, too, Mommy.”  I hear these quotes MANY times a day.  And he does indeed end EVERY SINGLE sentence with “Mommy”.)  So here she is…our little cowgirl.

I love the fact that they’ve included a braid coming out of the back of the hat, just to let people know that this towel is “Jessie” and not “Woody”.  I’m guessing this is maybe the only difference between the two towels.

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You read that right. Emily has joined my fantasy football league. My best friend since childhood, Beau, is the league commissioner, and the league is packed with some old friends, including Beau’s wife, Stephanie and Beau’s mom. Last year was my first year in the league, and my team name was “Aguiar 4 Life” in honor of my favorite Kansas City Chiefs punter (that’s right – punter) of all time: Mr. Louie Aguiar. Here’s a picture of him, his mustache, and his glorious hair.

I’m proud to say that I did Louie proud in ’09, winning it all in my inaugural season. Em saw how much fun I was having and decided to get in on the action. The woman has a proven track record of sports picking performance (her March Madness brackets perform well year after year), and I have to admit, she’s bringing the heat in our league this year. We had our draft last night, and her team – The St. Louigans – is stacked:

How about my gal getting our old alma mater star, Jeremy Maclin?! But don’t count me out yet. I renamed my team ¡Aguiar Repita! – which may or may not translate to “Aguiar Repeat!” in Spanish. Obviously, that means I’m defending my crown at all costs…and these are the dudes who are going to help me do it:

Emily and I are actually playing each other in Week 1 – and the winner gets all the glory right here on the blog. What say you, loyal readers? Who do you think is gonna bring home the gold in our first ever husband vs. wife fantasy bowl of destiny?

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the end is nigh

I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that LOST is my favorite show. As in “ever.” I’ve loved the characters, the twists and the clues. And so, as Sunday night’s series finale event approaches, I find myself predicting…even though I’m completely along for the ride and can’t wait to see what the show’s writers/creators have in store.

That being said, here are my guesses (note: I have no idea how the sideways world/real world will converge, so I’ll hold on to that mystery – granted, the biggest of them all – ’til Sunday night).

Who does Kate ends up with? Sawyer. C’mon, Princess Leia and Han Solo have to end up together.

Who kills the man in black/smoke monster/Flocke? Ben. He’s keeping Flocke close to him so he can do to him what Flocke manipulated him into doing to Jacob.

Surprise character appearance? Juliet.

Who ends up the island’s protector? Hurley. My second guess: Ben.

Wait, then what happens to Jack? He dies. Heroically, though, saving his sister, crazy Claire.

Who else dies? Miles. Richard if he’s not already dead. Ben, if he’s not the island’s protector.

Moment that makes you stand up, pump your fist, and shout “yes!”? While driving to the mysterious concert in the sideways world, Hurley rocks out to “You All Everybody.”

Desmond? Has a heartwarming reunion with Penny. Again. Everyone in America cries. Again. Brotha.

So what’s the big twist that keeps us all LOST as the show ends? As Hurley watches his friends leave, another crash happens on the island: a 1985 DeLorean streaks across the beach. Doc Brown & Marty McFly pop out.

Doc Brown: “Maaaaarty!”

Marty: “Doc, this is pretty heavy.”

Hurley: “Dude.”

End Super: “LOST”

Okay, so maybe not. I’m guessing just as the island gets a new protector, someone takes on the role of new smoke monster. Probably Ben. If he’s not dead.

So there you have it. I’m highly confident 99.9% of it won’t happen, but who knows.

What I do know? I’m gonna miss this show. But I’m glad it’s going out on its own terms. I already can’t wait to watch it all over again with the kids someday in the not-so-distant future…

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