“Grimm”

Grimm-Season-2-350x262

I’m not sure if you’re familiar with this show on NBC called “Grimm.” It’s pretty cool and, up until this season, I would have called it one of my favorite shows. It’s about.. how do I describe this. Okay, well imagine that all the old fairy tales are real. That the Big Bad Wolf and so on are actually real, it’s just the story got mixed up a little over the years. It’s like that, except the creatures can like shift, sort of. It’s hard to explain. I tracked down this video that sort of, kind of, halfway explains what’s been going on with this show. It’s not the one that I was looking for, but it’ll have to do.
http://www.nbc.com/grimm/video/nick-and-monroe-a-true-bromance/n31290/

Okay, so anyway, on to my rant and my main point now that you have some vague idea of the world I’m talking about. So, Nick, that’s the Grimm’s name btw, in case that wasn’t covered, has this girlfriend, Juliette. Juliette sucks. Like, I have been watching this show for it’s entire season and a half run, from the beginning, and I have yet to see one real redeeming value to this chick. She’s just… blah. Bland. Boring. A little grating for all her boring- ness. She’s useless! Everyone else in the show is running around, getting in fights, helping to save the day and she does nothing!
Now listen, I tried really, really hard to like her the first season. I figured, hey maybe the writers are just having an especially hard time getting into her head or something. Maybe, when she finds out about Nick being a Grimm then all of a sudden she’ll explode with usefullness. I mean, she is a vet, I figured if nothing else she can provide medical care for the wessen (the creatures) that get hurt or sick from time to time. But nope. Not only did she not believe Nick when he told her, which to be fair I don’t blame her for, it certainly sounds like schizophrenia when you just describe it, but she got herself put under a spell and now is being kind of a bitch. She can’t remember Nick, she’s being SUPER annoying about the whole thing and she’s basically cheating on him. Not so much anymore, since they sort of broke up, but still. She’s been making googly eyes at someone else for like all season and I cannot tell you how super annoying this plotline has been. It has moved at the pace of freaking continental drift, and it seems to be demanding a certain empathy and patience with the character that I simply lack and no one else I’ve talked to who watches the show seems to have either. I don’t care if she’s conflicted! I don’t care if she blah blah blah whatever! Fill in blank. The character has been annoying and useless the entire run of the show. I have only put up with her because she is Nick’s girlfriend, his lady love. She hasn’t been funny, or entertaining, or helpful in solving cases, or saving lives, or illuminating about the wessen world that Nick is trying to figure out or anything. She has simply been Nick’s girlfriend. I was really hoping for a Catwoman situation with her, instead I got Lois Lane. And I was resigned to put up with the freaking Lois Lane, except now she’s not even doing that! She has one job to do in the entire freaking show. Her character has one use, one purpose, and that is it. And she’s not even doing that! I sincerely hope that she gets killed off and we get a better heroine. I truly and sincerely do. Because this is some bullshit. Nick is a kickass Grimm, the other characters are awesome and funny, Monroe is one of my favorite characters on tv, Rosalee is awesome, Hank is very cool, the wessen they show are cool and well done, the plotlines (with the exception of this one) are good. It’s just this one blind spot in this freaking show, that Juliette is so freaking annoying and useless and I don’t see how they can possibly fix that one. I don’t even want them to fix that one. Just scrap the whole thing and start over. Kill off the character and introduce and new love interest. A kickass one. Have a female Grimm blow into town and blow Nick’s mind. Have a really cool wessen chick come into the picture, which would be even better because then there would be all sorts of conflict! Just please, NBC if you’re reading this, I’m begging you- get rid of Juliette.
That said, everyone should totally watch this show it’s awesome. And will be even better once this freaking plotline is over. Which, I’m honestly afraid is one of those season- long plotlines. You know what, catch up next season. That would probably be best.

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Dirty Food- Literally

I saw this on Yahoo and just had to repost it because.. because, well seriously? Dirt? Really? What the hell, people? I read that in a book once as a joke and you’re actually doing it? Seriously, it’s in “Hogfather” by Terry Pratchett, look it up. And here I thought it had been a fairly farfetched joke…

This Japanese Restaurant Has a Dirty Little Secret

By | Shine Food

Tokyo has a well-deserved reputation for high-end dining but one restaurant is making headlines for a menu that’s less hoity-toity and more down and dirty.

A French establishment named Ne Quittez Pas (“Please don’t leave”) is serving a ‘dirt course’, according to Japanese Rocket News, a website that sampled the menu. For $110 you can eat the stuff you scrub off your sneakers and pry from your kid’s mouth on the playground. Ne Quittez Pas’ menu includes a potato starch and dirt soup, salad with dirt dressing, aspic made with oriental clams and a top layer of sediment, a dirt risotto with sauteed sea bass, dirt gratin, and dirt ice cream. According to the Rocket News  investigation, despite appearing, well, dirty, none of the dishes  actually tasted like dirt and were described as “delicious” and  “divine.” They also reported that the dirt contains coffee grinds and  palm fiber.

“The dirt is called Kuro Tsuchi and it’s volcanic ashes mixed with soil and plants from the Kanto District in Japan,” Saeko Torii, a rep from the dirt manufacture Protoleaf told SHINE. “It has good bacteria, healthy minerals, and is natural and pure.”

So will we start seeing dirt on U.S. menus? And is it even safe? “Dirt isn’t regulated for human consumption so it’s hard to know the effects it would have on a person,” says Rebecca Scritchfield, a Washington, D.C. based registered dietitian. “Food gets its nutrients from soil, but one does not eat the actual soil. What’s more, countries have different safety regulations—people in Scotland eat sheep brains but that’s not allowed in the U.S. Protoleaf says their soil is safe to consume but is it safe to eat by American standards? We don’t know because we don’t really know what’s in it.”
For example, does the soil contain toxins, glass, or rocks? And is it even soil at all or just a snazzy marketing tool?
“My guess is that it’s a gimmick,” says Scritchfield. “You can consume good bacteria that promotes healthy digestion and immunity by eating foods like yogurt, tempeh, olives, pickles, or sauerkraut. Likewise, you can consume minerals by eating more fruits, vegetables, beans, and dairy.”

So, if you have an adventurous palate and a plane ticket to Tokyo, would you be insane to sample the dirt menu at Ne Quittez Pas? “If it’s real dirt, I’m not going to recommend it any time soon,” says Scritchfield.

PROTOLEAF: Salad with dirt dressing

PROTOLEAF: Dirt risotto with sauteed sea bass

PROTOLEAF: Dirt ice cream

PROTOLEAF: Dirt gratin

PROTOLEAF: Aspic made with oriental clams and a top layer of sediment

http://shine.yahoo.com/shine-food/this-japanese-restaurant-has-a-dirty-little-secret–164612162.html

“Blood Poison” by D.H. Dublin

I’m not sure what to make of this book. It started off strong, I liked it, it was going well and then it started to lose me. It faded in the last.. half? Quarter? Bit. It faded in the last bit. I’m not entirely sure when it started to fade, but fade it did by god.

Okay, so it’s a mystery, which is a bit unusual for me. Normally I don’t go for mysteries. I tend to get impatient and read the end and then lose interest once I know who did it. Self defeating, I realize, but it’s really just not my genre. That and I have a hard time finding an author I like or characters that I like within that genre. I don’t really know why. But anyway, this one was interesting and on sale for a dollar so I figured I didn’t have much to lose. I’m not sure if I did either.

It starts off with a murder of an anonymous woman as the prologue, which is then pushed quickly to the back burner for the much more interesting case of… the guy who died of apparent natural causes in his kitchen. I thought they were trying for a thing. I decided to go with it. While the crime scene people are waiting for the paramedics to show up to take the body away, the victim’s father shows up at the guys house- while the body is still there. Awkward. The main character, Madison Cross, then strikes up a sort of friendship with the guy. She’s trying to be nice, she hangs out with him while their waiting for the van to come for his dead son, they play cards, they talk etc. And then she gets, to my mind, like way too involved in this guy’s life. She calls his doctor to get a prescription for Valium, since he’s had quite a shock, she picks it up for him, she calls social services to get him a helper, she calls his doctor for his medical records when she’s told by social services that they would need them, she goes by his house at least once a day to see him. She bends over backwards for a complete stranger. I mean, maybe I’m just not that good of a person, god knows that’s a possibility, but this is a grown ass man. Let him try to sort things out for himself first before charging in and getting all up in his business. She even goes to the son’s funeral for him. All this after hanging out for a few hours with him on a bad day. It seems a bit much. I mean, apparently her mother was murdered when she was a girl and her father emotionally abandoned her after that, soon followed by actual abandonment, which, as I understand it, can lead to that kind of behavior, but it just seemed weird. Like, every time I turned around, she was talking about Horace, going to visit Horace, needing to ask Horace some questions, investigating the death of Horace’s son and the various and sundry other people who had died in his proximity throughout his life. And then the first murder, the one that is definitively murder, the one that the book opened with for god’s sake, seems like it’s forgotten or pushed to the side. Instead, she focuses virtually all her attention on Horace, his dead son, his dead wife, his dead doctor and his apparently criminal missing son. And never once, until the end, does she ever really consider Horace as a real suspect. Dude, just because the guy’s in a wheelchair doesn’t mean he can’t find a way to kill someone. Or several someones. Honestly, he was my only suspect all along. If a good mystery novel can be judged by how much it kept you guessing, then this one was not good. When it was revealed that Horace killed everyone, including the mystery woman at the beginning, a coincidence of epic proportions that has me rolling my eyes, I was not surprised. My reaction was more along the lines of “Well, duh.” I mean, the wheelchair explanation, Munchausen syndrome, was a bit of a surprise, but the rest of it, no. (Munchausen, for anyone who isn’t familiar with it, is a psychological disorder that causes someone to pretend that they’re sick or disabled to garner attention. There’s also Munchausen by Proxy, which is when someone, usually a parent, makes someone else actually sick to garner attention. Don’t tell me television doesn’t teach you anything.)

Anyway, like I said, I liked it at first, but by the end I was rolling my eyes at the constant references to Horace, her obsessive personality and how she seemed blind to the fact that the one common factor in three separate deaths is one person. Honestly, that person either has the worst luck in the world or they’re a killer, and as a person at least associated with the cops, if not a cop herself, she should always land on the killer side first, just to be safe. Makes you wonder how good she actually is at her job.

Sorry

Okay, so sorry I haven’t posted anything in like a week, but in my defense, it was a bad reading week. I started off trying to read “Daughter of Fortune” by Isabel Allende and, while I wouldn’t say that it was bad per se, it also wasn’t good. I mean, not for me. This woman has written like nine other books, so clearly she has fans, but it just didn’t do it for me. I got like seventy five pages into and still didn’t care about either the characters or what was happening to them, so I decided to forgo the pleasure. Then I tried to read “The Almost Moon” by Alice Sebold, who wrote “The Lovely Bones”, which, if you haven’t read it, is fantastic. I couldn’t put it down while reading it, which proved awkward when I had to go to work. So I had high expectations for “The Almost Moon”, which is, apparently, a “searing portrait of a mother- daughter bond that descends into murder.” And it was good, but honestly it was a bit much. It didn’t take much for me to go “And I’m good! What else you got?” That’s when I realized that there was another two hundred or so pages of the same and I decided that I was good. I got the point. The mother was emotionally and verbally abusive, those kinds of relationships can be complicated, the daughter snapped, etc. I got it. No need to read all 291 pages of that.

So anyway, yeah. That is the not so short explanation as to why I have been neglecting you all for like a week now. Apologies.

Nalini Singh

I feel like I have to say something about this author, despite the fact that I love her books. They’re kinda cheesy, but I love them. The thing I have to mention is the titles of her books. They’re completely ridiculous. They’re like, weirdly pornographic titles. I mean, I know they’re romance novels, so it isn’t without reason but my god, really? You’re gonna call your book “Slave to Sensation”? Really? Now, it should be noted that this book is about an empath, so the title sort of works, but again, why does it have to be so ridiculous? Or her next one, which is called “Visions of Heat”, which is about a forseer.
I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ll say it again. This is a violation of my literary laws. And you should name your books something good, or interesting, not something that makes people hide their book against the table and hope no one asks what their reading. It’s embarrassing. I mean, I’ve made fun of other authors for that kind of crap. Like Laurell K. Hamilton for instance. Do you know how hard I laughed when I saw that one of her books was called “Lick of Frost”? (a character in that series is named Frost) Really, really hard. Other people in the bookstore gave me weird looks and moved away from me, but that didn’t stop me. And now I follow a series that has titles like that regularly. Why would you do that to me? Why? I still mock Laurell K. Hamilton for that crap, and they’re called that. Of course there are all sorts of other reasons to mock Laurell K. Hamilton if you ignore that one, but that was one of my favorites dammit!

Also, since I’m talking about Nalini Singh and my literary laws, I’ll go ahead and toss this out there: she’s edging dangerously close to Character Abuse and I’m not okay with that. Character Abuse, for those of you who haven’t read my post on literary laws, is when the author is clearly working out some aggression, or self hate or something, and makes their characters go through the most ridiculous amount of crap imaginable. If there is a way to hurt the characters, some arcane bit of horror to make them experience, whether it makes any sense or adds to the plot in a meaningful way or not, they’ll do it. I highly disapprove of this kind of behavior. And Nalini Singh is edging very close to being guilty of this kind of crap. I’m really not okay with that. For now, I’m letting it go since she’s clearly going for a mood in her books of danger being very close, of passion and violence being all around you at every moment, especially in her Hunter series, and to do that you obviously have to make some sacrifices but I’m watching her. She’s very close to being on my list. I’d hate to put her on it, because then I don’t think I can read her books anymore. Nalini, if you’re reading this, be nicer to your characters. I’m begging you.

The Horror…

So last night I was browsing the web and ran across this website with a bunch of short stories on it, which I thought would be awesome, since it’s a website especially designed to help amateur writers find their voice. So I picked one at random and read it…. I wish I could say that it was a good story and that I recommend it, but honestly, it was one of those that, while interesting and well written, left you horrified and backing away slowly. It was absolutely and utterly horrifying. There is no other word for it. I couldn’t stop thinking about it today, which I suppose means it served it’s purpose, but I certainly hope that the author didn’t intend the reaction of “What? Why would you write that? What’s wrong with you?” It just.. and I… there are no words. Read it if you like, I’ll post the link, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.

It’s called “One Flesh” by Robert Devereaux http://theharrow.com/journal/index.php?journal=journal&page=article&op=view&path[]=2891&path[]=905

“The Mummy:Tomb of the Dragon Emporer”

This movie was bad. Like, really, really bad. I spent the movie heckling it with my sister and I still feel dumber for having watched it. It’s… Let me put it this way- the first two movies weren’t great. They were cheesy and they were fun and I can probably still recite the entirety of the first movie along with the actors, but they’re not great, objectively speaking. This movie is not like those movies. It was kind of painful to watch honestly. Partly because they couldn’t get Rachel Weisz back as Evie, for which I do not blame her, and it felt kind of like Rick was cheating on her with the new actress, Maria Bello. Who, might I add, did not do a very good job. She tried, god love her, she tried, but she was not good. Her accent alone was so overdone it made me laugh. Then there was the kid who played Alex, whose name I will admit I did not catch and it is not mentioned on the back of the dvd case. He was terrible and why did he have an American accent? Alex grew up in England, with an English mother, in English schools, with English friends. Why does he have an American accent? I realize the actor was probably American but that didn’t stop Maria Bello. Didn’t they ever hear of a dialect coach? Also, that kid was whiny. And annoying. I seriously missed the little blond kid from “The Mummy Returns.” He couldn’t act but he was cute and I totally bought him as Rick and Evie’s kid. He was smart and spunky. This kid was sort of smart and annoying. I guess he was brave, or the gun- waving equivalent. It was hard to tell, he never showed any real motivation for his actions, he just ran around doing stuff. And since when were Rick and Evie bad parents? What happened to the happy family from the second movie?

For that matter, why was there an evil Jet Li? I’ll admit I watched this mainly because of him, because it just looked stupid, but I was really not okay with an evil Jet Li. It was mysteriously, deeply upsetting. Anyone who has watched “Unleashed” probably understands what I’m talking about. While I’m announcing my love of kung fu stars in this movie though, I’ll go ahead and mention Michelle Yeoh cuz I love her. She was one of the best parts of “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”, her and Chow Yun Fat and the fact that the annoying chick died at the end.

I’m not sure if the yetis showing up and being a major plot point is completely awesome or completely retarded. Maybe both. I mean, they were pretty damned cute.

And the major, “epic” battle at the end, between the terra cotta warriors and the skeleton army wasn’t that good. CG- wise it was okay, but I really wasn’t feeling it. I really missed the Anubis warriors. Them, I was sure were bad ass and could lay down a serious smack down. The battle between them and the Maji was awesome. This was… not so much.

There was a dragon. I’ll give it that, it had a dragon. A three headed dragon at that. The other movies didn’t have a dragon. And some sort of hairy… I don’t know what. If it was Japan I would call it an oni. Since this was China… a Chinese oni? I don’t know what the hell that thing was but it was cool looking.

Jet Li’s death face was retarded and he spend a good chunk of it, and his terra cotta mummy time, looking constipated, which was unfortunate. The CG was spotty. Sometimes it was good, sometimes it was laughable. The dialog was terrible, the plot was terrible and the acting was bad. I want to be nice and say they tried their best but if that was their best, I wouldn’t want to admit it. All in all, I don’t know why they made this movie. It sucked and I don’t think it did very well. Let’s all hope it did badly enough that they won’t try and make another.