Hopefully it will be less successful than Operation Eat Chocolate Until Even My Puke Smells Sweet

My my, what a Christmas morning. The crazy wind outside woke us up at 4AM, and we never really got back to sleep. We chatted with my brother and his missus on Skype for a bit at the end of their Christmas day (they’re in Brisbane), then extracted the goodies from our stockings, then had a breakfast of delicious Cumbrae’s bacon, biscuits straight from the oven and prosecco mimosas. Then, to the business at hand — the unwrapping of gifts. Here’s my haul:

  • Five books: Easy Riders, Raging Bulls by Peter Biskind, The Disappeared by Kim Echlin, Empire Of Illusion by Chris Hedges, The Winter Vault by Anne Michaels, and a book about Cumberland County, NS (where I grew up)
  • Three Blu-ray discs: Die Hard (which we watched last night, actually), Inglourious Basterds and Children Of Men
  • This t-shirt
  • Chocolate. Oh, sweet merciful frangipane, the chocolate.
  • A jar of beets. Which, on any day other than Christmas — when I actually really want beets — would be a weird gift.
  • A proper, game-style Montreal Canadiens jersey, which I shall wear tomorrow night at…
  • The Montreal/Toronto game at the Air Canada Centre! Nellie somehow got us gold seats. I don’t know whose soul she had to sell to do it. I don’t even care. If y’all tune in to CBC Saturday night, I’ll be the guy getting his ass kicked by angry Leafs fans.
  • There was also an Amazon.ca coupon which I promptly used against a massive order to clear off my wishlist: Star Trek, Heat, Fight Club, Band of Brothers, Enterprise 2.0 by Andrew McAfee and The Art of Travel by Alain de Botton.
  • Of course we got lots of little things in our stockings, my favourite being the latest issue of GQ (which Nellie got for me after reading this tweet, because she is simply awesome)
  • We got some shared gifts like some cool art from my brother and his wife, some blown glass coasters (with a backstory) from my mom & dad, and four bottles of delicious Alchemy from Nellie’s mom
  • Best of all, though, were the donations my family made in lieu of gifts, which through some good timing, generosity and a little voodoo were matched 300% and given to the United Way of Greater Toronto.

Right now the turkey’s in the oven, the mess has been carted away, Nellie’s watching the Blu-ray copy of Serenity I gave her, the cats are coming down from their catnip high and we’re sliding into sweet relaxation mode. Tonight there’ll be revelry with friends. Tomorrow we’ll do battle with the deluded sports fans of Toronto. Following that I plan on launching Operation Watch Movies Until Mine Eyes Do Bleed.

Merry Christmas, kids!

"Officials would not estimate the likelihood of success, only calling it high."

Yesterday my brother was supposed to be in town for dinner, but fate prevented him from reaching Toronto in time, so Nellie and I just went ahead and had dinner at the same place. Screw valentine’s day; ’tis a crock.

Much more important to us are the days immediately before and after V-Day; Feb 13 is the anniversary of the day we got engaged (which Nellie refers to as engage-iversary) and Feb 15, the anniversary of the day we adopted the cats (which, naturally, she refers to as cat-iversary). Of course, there’s another wonderful day coming up on Monday: our new holiday. Thank you Dalton McGuinty.

One more Valentine’s-related tidbit: I’m guessing NBC re-aired last year’s V-Day episode of 30 Rock, ’cause yesterday my blog was flooded with hits for the phrase “Happy Valentimes!!

.:.

Let’s see, what’s in the news today? Hmm…US primaries…campus gunman…Pentagon to shoot down satellite…baseball hea…wait, what?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Pentagon plans to shoot down a disabled U.S. spy satellite before it enters the atmosphere to prevent a potentially deadly leak of toxic gas from the vehicle’s fuel tank, officials said on Thursday. [via Reuters]

Yeah, I don’t see how anything could go wrong with that.

.:.

Toshiba: bring out your dead.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has decided to exclusively sell high-definition DVDs in the Blu-ray format, dealing what could be a crippling blow to the rival HD DVD technology backed by Toshiba Corp. [via MSNBC]

Seriously where’s my Blu-Ray Children Of Men?

[tags]valentine’s day, family day ontario, disabled satellite, hd-dvd, blu-ray[/tags]

Subject to revision

Two more nails in the HD-DVD coffin. I hope this means I can get Children Of Men and Battlestar Galactica on Blu-Ray soon.

.:.

Speaking of movies, it’s time I face the fact that I’m not going to get through my must-see-in-2007 list any time soon. So, with that, here are my top* movies of 2007:

  1. There Will Be Blood
  2. Once
  3. No Country For Old Men
  4. Juno
  5. Zodiac
  6. Eastern Promises
  7. Starting Out In The Evening
  8. This Is England
  9. The Lookout
  10. Gone, Baby, Gone

There’s a second tier of films that I really liked as well, but I didn’t try to rank them. It’s pretty hard to compare 300 or Superbad to No End In Sight.

  • 300
  • 3:10 To Yuma
  • Black Book
  • Black Snake Moan
  • The Bourne Ultimatum
  • The Kingdom
  • No End In Sight
  • Sicko
  • Sunshine
  • Superbad

I thought the three most overrated films of the year were (in no particular order) Knocked Up, Atonement and Letters From Iwo Jima. The most disappointing by far was Spider-Man 3, especially considering Spider-Man 2 was probably the best superhero movie ever made.

* keep in mind that I didn’t see Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead, The Diving Bell And The Butterfly, I’m Not There, Michael Clayton, 4 Months 3 Weeks And 2 Days, Lars & The Real Girl, The Savages, The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford, Away From Her, Inland Empire, Iraq In Fragments, Ratatouille or We Own The Night.

[tags]best movies of 2007, hd-dvd, blu-ray[/tags]

Happy anniversary to me

At this very moment four years ago I was probably doing some boxing day shopping with my father and brother, and was seven hours away from making an honest woman out of Nellie.

.:.

I’ve watched a ton of movies in the last few days, so here’s the synopsis: The Good Shepherd was actually pretty boring, and Angelina Jolie is really starting to scare me; Friends With Money was a chick flick, but the four lead actresses were so good it was almost worth it; Haven was one of the worst films I’ve ever seen and I have no idea how it got on my list in the first place; Shame was a rather shoddily-done documentary about an incredibly interesting topic so it balanced out; Spider-Man 3 was kind of entertaining but was the worst of the series by far, and 300 looks frigging amazing on Blu-Ray.

Whew.

[tags]anniversary, the good shepherd, friends with money, haven, shame, spider-man 3, 300, blu-ray[/tags]

My brain and eyes might just explode

Yowzah, that was quite a morning. I guess not going home this year freed us up to purchase some bigger-ticket items for each other (which we normally wouldn’t want to try to get on a plane), so I am now the proud owner of a Blu-ray DVD player and Nellie now has a wine fridge. We certainly got lots of other cool stuff as well, but suffice it to say the DVD player’s been a little distracting; I’ve already hooked it up and watched Superbad.

I also got 300, the Spider-Man Trilogy and the seemingly-made-for-high-def BBC series Planet Earth on Blu-ray, as well as The Bourne Ultimatum in standard DVD format (it’s only on HD-DVD for now). Nellie got Freaks And Geeks: Season 1, Young Guns, Young Guns 2 and Never Been Kissed.

I got a few books too: My Boring-Ass Life by Kevin Smith, The Book Of Dave by Will Self and The Cult Of The Amateur by Andrew Keen. Nellie got A Dirty Job by Christopher Moore.

Right now Nellie’s making Christmas dinner (everything except the turkey, of course) while A Christmas Story plays in the background. I don’t know if she’ll be able to top last night’s kick-ass meal (lemon pepper shrimp, scallops, cheese, chocolate & a bottle of white wine I bought her last year) but I’m willing to let her try.

Happy Christmas, everyone.

[tags]christmas, blu-ray, wine fridge[/tags]