Monthly Archives: September 2007

Political Stuff – The Harkin Steak Fry

Dem familyGreat landscapeWagging the dogMom and voter of 2024

Presidential candidates have been running amok in Iowa, so Iowa Senator Tom Harkin corralled some Democrats at a local balloon field. My wife and I live a mere 1/2 hour away so we decided to check it out.

The Harkin Steak Fry may not be the fanciest political event in Iowa, but it sure is the biggest. This year was an especially well run operation with multiple steak lines, chewable steak, and plenty chairs. By the time we finished eating, the natural amphitheater formed by Iowa's rolling hills had filled with people.

My wife was more interested in the speeches than I was. My job was to entertain little man. He has about a 5 minute attention span, and didn't even last through half of Obama's speech. Hillary was next and drew some big cheers. She has a lot of supporters in the crowd. Dodd was O.K., but he's no "ball of fire". After like, forever, Edwards came to the podium. My wife and I have been tentative Edwards supporters for most of the year, and from the sounds of the crowd, he was wide support in our area.

We camped out way on the edge of the crowd. This is the best we could get with our new camera. It sure beats our last picture of Edwards! My wife commented that it sure must suck to have to sit on that stage all afternoon with the sun on your face. Hope they wore sunscreen.

Just as Biden was coming on the stage, little man started to reverse his development. He tossed all the toys we brought for him, bit my shoulder, threw his glasses on the ground, and then laid limp on my wife's shoulder. That was our signal to leave. At the exit, the Edwards camp set up a platform with a gondola that shot flames into the air. Very Mad Max.

Special props to my wife for finding a back way into the Steak Fry. We totally bypassed the two mile long line of slow moving cars.

Huzaa to the democratic process!

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Untimely Reviews of 2 star movies – Snakes on a Plane

I have had it with all of these mother f***ing 2 star movies on my mother f***ing cable. Actually, I'm not, because I have seen the epitome of a 2 star movie, "Snakes on a Plane". This is what 2 star movies are made to be.How untimely to see this movie now, more than a year and half after it first generated buzz for its inane title. The buzz may be over but the hissing, spitting, and biting, continues.

"Snakes on a Plane" is a snake bite above most "cheesy" disaster movies. First, you get Samuel L. Jackson in a lead role. He's great in every movie he is in, even the crappy ones. Second, you get the great line Samuel L. Jackson delivers in regards to his feelings about snakes and the plane they infest. Other than that, it is the same disaster movie you have seen dozens of times before.

The movie starts as any disaster movie would, with the signs of danger and the long introduction of the characters who will survive until the end. Everyone fits into a category we have seen before: the ditzy one, mr. ego, the jerk whose death we relish, the really nice person, the guy with helpful fighting skills, the hero, the comic relief guy, the "it was my last flight" lady, and Samuel L. Jackson. The snakes are all pretty much the same

The bulk of the movie is spent watching the many ways snakes can kill people. This gets old fast.  They lunge at someone's face, lunge at someone's feet, and lunge at someone's torso. Each snake has a different venom, so there are different times of death ranging from instantaneous to just before the plane lands but not afterwards because that would ruin the "happy ending". Fortunately for the audience, which at my house is me and my wife, those clever movie guys have all sorts of other ways for people to die, including falling to death . . . within the plane. Could that be a movie first?

I do recommend "Snakes on a Plane" over most things made for television. I do not recommend a "Snakes on a Plane" drinking game. Oh, and this movie is not for people afraid of snakes, flying, and Samuel L. Jackson.

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