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The Street Lawyer

“I use Grammarly’s plagiarism check because it let’s me know how badly I need to work on my writing skills”

I have a ton of John Grisham novels and it was time to dust off one from my shelves and re-read it. The book was released in the United States on 1 January 1998 and is his 9th book overall.

Shaken by a the experience of having a homeless man, who called himself “Mister”, holding him and a few other lawyers hostage and then seeing the man shot by a police sniper, has a life changing affect on antitrust lawyer Michael Brock. Michael is concerned by what he learns and is compelled to investigate further on the plight of the homeless in Washington DC, the nation’s capital and his current city of residence. He finds his way to the 14th Street Legal Clinic where he meets Mordecai Green, an advocate for the homeless, who asks him to help one night at a homeless shelter. As he digs deeper he learns that his own employers, the large DC law firm Drake & Sweeney, are also complicit in an illegal eviction, which eventually resulted in the death of a young homeless family. This leads Michael to take a confidential file with the intention to copy it but is quickly accused of theft.

Michael leaves his job with the firm to join Mordecai and take a poorly-paid position with the 14th Street Legal Clinic, which works to protect the rights of the homeless. Faced with a sudden cutting of their joint income, his wife proceeds to divorce him (though the marriage was dying for a long time) and Michael moves out to a less expensive apartment. He meets Ruby, a homeless drug addict, who becomes a regular at the clinic and has coffee & donuts each morning. Later he admits her to a therapy class for drug-addicted women for her to recover so she can see her son again and in the process meets Megan who works at the women’s homeless shelter. Drake & Sweeney comes after Brock with theft and malpractice allegations but the Clinic launches a lawsuit against the law firm and its business partners. With bad publicity looming it’s ugly head over the firm the matter is settled by mediation and the clinic receives a large payout to be shared with the victims of the eviction – with the condition being that Michael’s license is suspended for a while. It however won’t affect his pay or his work at the Clinic so he agrees and lets Mordecai finalize the settlement. In an unexpected move Drake & Sweeney’s head partner, deeply troubled by the events, offers to make pro bono staff available to assist the work of the Clinic in fighting for the rights of homeless people.

The book ends with Michael taking a brief vacation with Megan and a recovering Ruby, reflecting on the changes in his life and feeling like he has started to make a real difference. Good read, it’s kinda hard to put down once you start reading and it’s a comfortable pace that lets you get hooked.

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Decisions, Decisions

How are you more likely to make an important decision — by reasoning through it, or by going with your gut?

Most of my decisions are thought through but there will be the ones that I do by listening to my gut. When I was younger, ofcourse I went with my gut feeling most of the time. That’s how a lot of people tend to be and do when they are young. You wear your heart on your sleeve and hence mostly go by gut feelings and jump into things not having thought it through. And then if you are not lucky you will have to bear the consequences. That’s the same way that I was and even in my adulthood or post late 20s I still do occasionally go by my gut feeling since I have come to rely upon them from time to time.

However as I have gotten older I’ve come to the conclusion that for a lot of important stuff you must think it through. If your heart is saying something and your mind is saying the same thing – then by all means go for it. If your gut says  go but your brain says no – there could be something wrong. Maybe it’s not worth it or maybe you need to think it over, ensure that this is a wise choice. Perhaps it is fear but it is better to think twice and not repent later.

So I listen to my gut and I rely on it but for 90% of things I will think it over and reason with myself first!

Prompt from The Daily Prompt At WordPress.com.

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Only God Forgives

Beware the violence, in a slow movie that barely sets the heart racing. Only God Forgives is a 2013 Danish-French co-production crime film written and directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, starring Ryan Gosling, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Vithaya Pansringarm. This is the 3rd Refn movie I’ve seen after Valhalla Rising & Drive (which also starred Gosling).

Story wise the movie is simple. Gosling plays Julian, an American owner of a Muay Thai club in Bangkok, Thailand that is also a front for an underground drug smuggling ring. His older brother Billy, goes out on night after watching a few matches, and gets a young prostitute who he then proceeds to kill after he has sex with her. The police catch Billy and Lieutenant Chang allows the girl’s father, Choi Yan Lee, to beat Billy to death, but cuts off the father’s arm for allowing his young daughter to be a prostitute. Julian , gathers his crew and confronts Choi but he decides not to kill him when he hears about the reason why the man killed Billy. This does not sit well with his mother Crystal, a kind of mafia mother figure, who has just arrived from the US to claim her son’s dead body. Crystal demands Julian find and kill the men who killed Billy, but he refuses—believing that Choi had some justification for seeking retribution for the killing of his daughter—infuriating her. Julian has several visions of meeting Chang in a dark room, Chang cutting Julian’s hands off.

At dinner Julian has Mai, his favourite prostitute with whom he usually sits tied up while she masturbates herself, dress up and pretend to be his girlfriend and meet his mother. Crystal sees through the ruse and then proceed to insult Mai and her profession and then belittles Julian pronouncing him sexually inferior to his dead brother. Julian just sits there listening to his mother insult them both but gets angry at Mai later as he is walking her home. One of the fighters at Julian’s boxing club assassinates Choi at the behest of Gordon, a member of Julian’s crew, at Crystal’s request. Later, the police investigating Choi’s murder arrive at Julian’s club, but Chang concludes that Julian is not Choi’s killer. Julian recognizes Chang from his visions and follows him from the boxing club, but Chang seems to disappear into thin air. Crystal wants Chang dead for his part in Billy’s death and meets with an associate, Byron, to arrange Chang’s assassination. Three gunmen shoot at Chang and his men in a small hotel and one of the cops is killed. Chang shoots two of the gunmen dead and chases the 3rd, catching him. He is led to their boss who gave the 3 men the target but Chang spares that man’s life as the latter’s young son was with him at the time and instead kills the 3rd gunman. Chang and his men then go to Byron’s club and torture him to find out who ordered the hit on his life. Byron, even though blinded by Chang, doesn’t reveal the name but reveals the reasoning behind the hit.

When Chang goes to see Julian and Crystal at the muay thai club, Julian proposes a fight between the two of them. Chang, an experienced boxer, easily and thoroughly beats Julian, who lands not a single hit in the entire match. Afterwards, Crystal pleads to Julian to protect her, the same way she asked Julian to kill his own father for her, as she suspects that Chang knows it was her who ordered the hit. Julian agrees and takes his associate Charlie Ling to enter Chang’s house, killing the guard outside. They wait till the nanny and Chang’s young daughter comes home and Charlie kills the nanny but Julian has a change of heart and kills Charlie before he can kill the child. Chang later barges into Crystal’s room and kills her. When Julian finds her dead body, he cuts open her abdomen and places his hand inside her. After leaving and having several surreal visions, Julian is shown standing in a field with Chang, who appears to cut off both of Julian’s hands with his sword. The final scene returns to Chang singing at a karaoke bar with an audience of attentive police officers, watching him in amazement.

I dunno what those last scenes were about. This movie is weird and the ending did not leave me satisfied, especially after I sat through the movie enduring the lack of dialogue and excitement and interactions. Visually it’s stunning, with several shots that speaks volumes of the character’s psyche. Storywise I find it lacking. I’ll give it a 6.5 outta 10!

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Motley Crue To Call It Quits

80s glam rock superstars have announced that they are quitting as a band and will retired the name Motley Crue. The heavy metal band plans to say goodbye with 72 concerts in the United States and Canada before retiring. The rockers made the announcement at a news conference Tuesday in Hollywood. The tour, which will feature special opening act Alice Cooper, will have tickets starting at $15 dollars. Formed in 1981 by Sixx and Lee, Mötley Crüe has sold more than 80 million albums worldwide. The group’s last album, “Saints of Los Angeles,” was released in 2008.

“We want to go out with the four founding members of Motley Crue and go out on top,” said lead singer Vince Neil. “We want to leave a legacy,” added guitarist Nikki Sixx. “We want to have some dignity.” The band members have signed a legal agreement promising not to perform as Motley Crue after 2015. A Motley Crue country tribute album is in the works, as is a big-screen version of the band’s 2002 book, “The Dirt.” The influential, and infamous, L.A. rock band turned Beacher’s Madhouse in Hollywood into a circus Tuesday morning as more than 100 media outlets packed the hot spot to hear the band’s announcement of a 72-date farewell tour.They even sat behind tombstone markers for an additional morbid flourish. Unlike countless other rock bands and pop stars who have announced farewell tours to only return to the road for one reason or another — or set up shop in Las Vegas — Mötley Crüe’s members insisted that when this run of shows ends, that’s it. The band even had its attorney on hand to present a formal agreement that, effective at the end of 2015, bars any of the band members from using the Mötley Crüe trademark — which they all signed. Lee smiled and pounded the table with his fist after signing his name on the document, and Mars shouted “R.I.P.” into a microphone.

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Arsenal 2 Southampton 2

Arsenal played terribly and yet could have come out undeserving winners in a late match at Southampton last night. The Premier League leaders dropped 2 points in the title race as they were held by Southampton in an enthralling contest at St Mary’s. On paper Arsenal should have won and bagged all 3 points but they came out onto the field looking a shadow of the team that has played so well all season and were dominated by their lesser opponents. The Saints controlled the 1st half and went ahead deservingly when Jose Fonte headed in Luke Shaw’s cross to give the Saints a deserved lead. Arsene Wenger must not have been a happy man at half time and he must have berated his squad.

Because the Gunners turned things round with two quick goals after half-time, from Olivier Giroud and a pretty to watch goal from Santi Cazorla. That should have released the air around the Saints but in just a few minutes, they equalized! Adam Lallana brought Southampton level when he turned in a Jay Rodriguez pass before Arsenal’s Mathieu Flamini was sent off for a rash challenge. And yet 10 men Arsenal almost went ahead again as Ozil hit the bar for Arsenal following a surging run from inside his own half, before Nacho Monreal sliced wastefully wide. But truly the Saints should have won but Gunners goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny then pulled off a fine double save in the closing stages to keep out efforts from Shaw and Fonte and deny the home side all three points. Arsene Wenger’s men looked a pale imitation of their usual selves as they opened the door to title rivals Manchester City and Chelsea. Both could overtake Arsenal with victories on Wednesday, when City visit Tottenham and Chelsea host West Ham.

Arsenal were struggling in midfield in the absence of the injured Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere, with Mikel Arteta and Flamini finding themselves overrun. With 10 minutes left Arsenal were reduced to 10 men when Flamini was shown a straight red card for a two-footed challenge on Schneiderlin. From then on, it was an onslaught from Southampton, with Szczesny having to be at his sharpest to ensure his team clung on to the draw. Arsenal have a 2 point lead at the top but this game is exactly the reason why I think we won’t win the league this season, why I’ve criticized Wenger for not bringing in more top quality talent and why I think he should leave or be replaced as manager. The transfer window is almost over and who has he brought in strengthen the squad? No one! We need one top class striker, an attacking midfield and a solid defenceman! Plus a goalie!

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Doppelganger And Using My Name As Well!

Funny thing happened to me near the High Court junction this evening. I was about to cross the road when a guy called from behind “ROSHAN”! I stopped and turned around, the guys comes closer to me and then stops “Oh sorry! Wrong person!”

So, there’s another SEXY BEAST by the same name as me walking around Cochin? No way he thought I was a guy who looked just like me and had the same first name!!

How dare this imposter walk about my home town, looking like me and having the audacity to even have the same name as me? Such insolence, I shall not tolerate this nonsense. This is blasphemy! He shall pay. I will go about on a hunting expedition and track this doppelganger down and layeth the smackdown on his ass!

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Two Roger Corman Scifi Classics

I watched a couple of classic Roger Corman science fiction classic during the weekend. First off is Battle Beyond The Stars a 1980 film directed by Jimmy T. Murakami and produced by Corman, starring Richard Thomas, Robert Vaughn, Sybil Danning, George Peppard (yes, Hannibal from The A-Team) & John Saxon. The film was intended to be a “Magnificent Seven in outer space”, a homage to the classic western The Magnificent Seven which itself is a remake of Akira Kurusawa’s Japanese classic Seven Samurai.

The tyrant Sador travels with his army of mutants called the Malmori on their large & powerful spaceships to the peaceful colony on the planet Akir and demands that they submit themselves to his rule or he would use  a weapon called a “Stellar Converter”, which literally turns planets into small stars. To show that he mans business Sador has his men kill a random handful of people by shooting lazers at them from the ship. He gives them 7 days to make up their minds. Zed, the last warrior on the peaceful planet is old and blind and suggests that they hire mercenaries to defend their planet and offers the use of Nell – his ship, which has an artificial intelligence navigation and tactical computer for the job if they can find a pilot. Shad, a young man and the only one who has piloted the ship before volunteers and sets off on the recruiting mission. Just as he leaves the planet, a fighter ship that Sador had left behind to watch the planet follows him but Nell is faster and out outmaneuvers the mutants.

Shad meets Doctor Hephaestus (a rather ridiculous overacting Sam Jaffee), kept on life support, and his beautiful daughter Nanelia on the Hephaesstus space station otherwise inhabited by Android and asks for weapons. Instead the doctor wants to keep Shad there for his daughter so the two can mate and populate the station. With Nanelia’s help, Shad escapes and she goes to find mercenaries to help him. Shad finds Space Cowboy – a tuck driving, Western film loving, harmonica playing cowboy – who is under attack from hijackers. Shad saves Cowboy and his ship, a space freighter, from several hijackers. Shad learns that Cowboy is late delivering a shipment of laser guns to a planet which, as they watch, Sador destroys with his weapon. Lacking the fuel to carry the weapons home, Cowboy offers to deliver them to Akir. Shad talks him into teaching the Akira to use the guns. Shad then meets a set of five alien clones who share a group consciousness named Nestor, who join up in exchange for being entertained. Next he finds Gelt, a wealthy assassin who is so well known he can’t show his face on any civilized planet. Gelt offers his services in trade for the ability to live peacefully hiding among the Akira. Gelt’s spaceship is highly maneuverable and well armed. Saint Exmin, of the Valkyrie warriors, bugs Shad to join as she wants to prove herself in battle. She has a small but extremely fast ship and tags along.

Nanelia meanwhile is captured by a reptilian slaver named Cayman. Cayman possesses a powerful old ship with an eclectic crew of aliens. She quickly recruits Cayman to their cause when he learns that they are looking for mercenaries to fight Sador.  The 7 ships arrive at Akir and destroy the fighter ship and then go to meet the rest of the natives, who are cautious of the violent aliens at first, and discuss strategies. Eventually, Sador returns, but his fleet of fighters is intercepted by Shad and his new friends. Gelt’s ship is the first to be damaged by heavy fire and it crashes, killing him. Meanwhile, Cowboy and the Akiran natives, armed with his laser guns, fight off Sador’s invading ground forces. Next to be destroyed is Exmin,  then Cayman and his people and then Cowboy who pilots his ship a strafing run on Sador’s flagship. However, the mercenaries are successful in destroying all of Sador’s star fighters and the Stellar Converter, leaving only Sador’s flagship. Shad and Nanelia, flying in Zed’s Corsair, are captured by the flagship in a tractor beam. The pair escape in a lifepod after Shad orders Nell to activate the crippled Corsair’s self-destruct program. The Corsair blows up, destroying Sador’s ship. The pair return  to Akir victorious but grieve over the death of their new friends. Shad tells her that the Akira believe that no one is truly dead when they are remembered and beloved by the living. The Akira will remember the sacrifices made by the mercenaries and honor them forever.

Some good visuals, loved some of the ships but is extremely cheesy as was the norm for that era. Some of the sound effects seem to be stolen from the 1978 Battlestar Galactica while there is a Star Wars feel in the movie. I wasn’t too impressed but it’s good enough for a 6.5 outta 10!

The second movie on the list is the horror-scifi flick, 1981’s Galaxy Of Terror, which was produced by Corman and directed by Bruce D. Clark. It stars Edward Albert, Erin Moran, Ray Walston, Sid Haig, Robert Englnd and Taaffe O’Connell. In a way the movie is a rip of 1979’s Alien and was one of the earliest films for director James Cameron, who served as Production Designer and Second Unit Director on the film.

On a planet named Morganthus  the last survivor of a crashed spaceship is attacked and killed by an unseen force. Far away, on another planet a woman and a man, who’s face & head is obscured by a glowing reddish-orange light, are playing a game speak cryptically of things being put into motion. The man is known as the Planet Master and he instructs one of his military commanders to send a ship to Morganthus on a rescue mission. Commander Ilvar is on the spaceship Quest which is chosen for the rescue mission. Quest has the worst captain (in the history of fictional spaceships ever), the worst away mission leader and the worst “esp / psi-sensitive / can detect life” woman in the history of science fiction! Piloting the ship is Captain Trantor, a survivor from a famous space disaster that has left her psychologically scarred and unstable and she endangers the lives of herself and the crew even before they can leave orbit, by taking off with the least amount of morning and the crew scrambles to get in place.

Quest crash lands on the planet’s surface after recovering from the landing, the crew prepare to leave the Quest and search for survivors. The surface team have significant problems with team leader Baelon, who is pushy and arrogant and totally unimpressed by Alluma’s, the psi-sensitive crew member, inability to detect any lifesigns whatsoever. Entering the vessel that they were sent to find and see that a huge massacre had taken place. They burn all but one body, which they take back for testing, but Cos, the highly-strung youngest member of the team, despite being reassured by his seniors, becomes increasingly terrified by being on the ship and, a short time later, he is killed by a grotesque creature. The crew discover that something from the planet pulled them down, and in order to escape, they investigate and find a massive pyramid-shaped structure. One by one the members get separated and killed by various creatures, including a huge, ugly slimy worm that grows quickly from minute size and attacks, disrobes and proceeds to rape Dameia, the ship’s technical officer. Clearly it shows humping motions and Dameia’s screams son turn to that of moans of forced orgasms and she dies. The others are burned or dismembered or consumed or crushed to death by monsters, which are later revealed to be created out of each person’s unique set of fears.

Finally only two members of the team, Ranger (Robert Englund) and Cabren (Edward Albert who looks like a cross between Tom Sellek and J R Bourne), remain alive. Inside the middle chamber of the pyramid, Cabren finds out that Kore, the ship’s crew, is actually the Master! The Master explains the pyramid is actually an ancient toy for the children of a long-extinct race, built in order to test their ability to control fear. Cabren is son attacked by various creatures including his dead crew members all an illusion created by the pyramid. Finally having survived all that can be thrown his way, Cabren kills the Master for allowing his crew to die, but becomes the new Master in his place. Which was the latter’s plan all along; his end being near he was looking for a suitable replacement.

The movie ends there; that’s it? What about Ranger? Do the dead crew members come back alive? Can Cabren do that now he is The Master? What is the point of all this if he can’t do much? No answers given in the movie, which is badly acted, badly shot and badly directed. Also has horror icons Robert Englund & Sid Haig (who barely says 2 sentences and acts terribly in the movie).I do however like the inside of the ships, which still look cool. But the movie looks a lot like Alien and Aliens, which Cameron would direct 5 years later. 6 outta 10!

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Does It Make You Squirm?

Do you feel uncomfortable when you see someone else being embarrassed? What’s most likely to make you squirm?

Ofcourse. Who likes to see other people in embarrassing situations where they are going through something that could potential shame them or make them feel like they just want to find a hole in the wall and crawl in there hidden from the rest of the world. It’s called being empathetic and a I, like most people, am empathetic for the most part. I do not think most of you would like to see someone go through a really embarrassing situation because we wouldn’t want ourselves to be in the same situation and would want to avoid seeing someone in that situation and try to help him avoid that situation if we could.That goes the same for me.

Now ofcourse there are some situations we can’t avoid no matter what we do and we just have to bear it. The same happens when it comes to someone else being embarrassed; you have to steel your nerves, think of something else and wait until it ends. The only thing you can do in those situations is to help and console the person who was embarrassed or cheer them up by changing the subject to something much more pleasant and happy. These are somethings that we can do as human beings helping other human beings.

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American Horror Story : Murder House

American Horror Story  is a horror television series created and produced by Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk, of which each season acts as a mini-series of it’s own containing a single story. The first season was shown in 2011 and is called American Horror Story : Murder House, about a family who move from Boston to Los Angeles and take up residence in a house that, unknown to them initially, is also haunted by the ghosts of all the people who died in it. These ghosts are tied to the house and can never leave. The cast includes Taissa Farmiga, Connie Britton, Dylan McDermott, Evan Peters, Denis O’Hare,  Jessica Lange, Kate Mara, and Frances Conroy plus many good guest stars.

Ben Harmon was caught cheating on his wife Vivien, who had recently miscarried, when he had an affair with Hayden, one of his students. In an attempt for a fresh start he asks for Vivien’s forgiveness and moves the family – their teenage daughter Violet – all the way to Los Angeles where they buy a large mansion. The real estate agent Marcy only tells them that the previous owners, a gay couple, had apparently died in a murder/suicide inside the house. Despite this the Harmons move in and Ben, a psychiatrist, starts seeing patients in the home office. Vivien hires Moira O’Hara a housekeeper who, to men, appears as young and seductive, but, to women, old and matronly. We later learn that the house has had around 20 violent deaths in the house, earning the monicker “Murder House” and is s start attraction on a sightseeing tours. Unknown to the family, all the people who died in the house are now ghosts who also inhabit it and are tied to the house, unable to ever leave (except on Halloween when all dead spirits can roam freely). Their neighbours are Constance and her daughter Addie (Jamie Brewer) become frequent, if sometimes unwelcome, guests. Addie, who suffers from Down syndrme seems to have a supernatural connection with the house and often sneaks in to play with a couple of the ghosts.

Among Ben’s patients is Tate Langdon, a teenager and Constance’s son who falls in love with Violet. We later learn that in 1994 the psychotic Tate had killed 15 students in his school and was later killed in the Murder House by cops when he pulled a gun on them – he too is a ghost. Tate, wearing a  a latex bondage suit (that Vivien found in the attic and which belonged to the dead gay couple who used to live in the house) rapes Vivien at night, a little after she & Ben had had sex for the first time in months, as she thinks its Ben in the suit. As a result she becomes pregnant with twins with different fathers. It is later revealed that Tate’s motive in the rape was to sire a baby for Nora (Lily Rabe), a ghost in house who lost her own child. Another man, Larry Harveya former resident of the house who has suffered horrible burns, also begins inserting himself into the Harmon’s lives, giving Ben a cryptic warning about the house. We later learn that he is Constance’s former lover and his own wife had killed herself and their two young daughter by setting them on fire. Tate had later burned Larry using fuel and fire, as a ploy to punish his mother Constance for having Tate’s younger (and deformed) brother euthanized, just before he killed his school mates and was killed himself. On Halloween night Addie is killed by a hit n run and died outside on the street. After learning that Tate is a monster who killed so many and is a ghost, Violet kills herself, something she doesn’t realize was successful until weeks later when she realizes she cannot leave the house.

Hayden who had come to Los Angeles to blackmail Ben as she is pregnant, is killed by Larry as a “favour” to Ben and wants $1000 for it. Hayden comes back as a ghost and haunts Ben and Vivien. In order to get the baby from Vivien Nora, Tate, Hayden and some of the other ghosts scare her to the point where she accidentally shoots Ben and sound mentally unstable to the cops and is taken to a hospital for the insane.  Meanwhile, Constance enlists the help of a medium (Sarah Paulson) to help her talk to Addie. Constance discovers from the medium, to her horror, that Tate’s child with Vivien will become the Antichrist. When Moira and Violet tell Ben the truth about her being a ghost, Tate being the “rubber man”, and the evil in the house, he has Vivien freed from the asylum. Violet breaks up with Tate after Chad (Quinto), one of the members of the gay couple, reveals that Tate raped Violet’s mother and murdered him and his boyfriend due to their inability to produce a child. Vivien goes into labour at the house and gives birth to the twins in the house, with Moira recruiting the more benevolent ghosts of the house to help deliver the children. However she and one of the twins die leaving Ben alone with the second baby. As he grieves he contemplates suicide to be with his now dead wife and daughter but is stopped by Vivien who tells him to take the baby away from the house. As Ben is leaving the house he is caught and murdered by Hayden, who hangs him to simulate a suicide. Hayden attempts to take the baby, but Constance, helped by the ghost of a lover named Travis take the baby boy from Hayden and Constance hides the baby in her house.

Constance hides the baby and tells the police that Ben killed himself out of grief for his wife’s death and that Violet (whose body is never found) ran off with the surviving child. Now trapped in the house, the Harmons (Vivien, Ben, Violet, and the deceased twin) team up with Moira to keep further families from the house by scaring new residents into leaving. For his actions, Tate is banished by Violet and he is unable to be with her and so hangs out with Hayden. Three years later, Constance (who left town to create a cover story regarding the Harmon child she is now raising) returns to Los Angeles but finds that her grandson (the Antichrist) has murdered his nanny. She slowly walks to the young smiling, giggling boy. She then smiles and touches his hair and whispers, “Now what am I gonna do with you?”

Scary, twisted, enthralling, riveting, thoroughly enjoyable, well written and well acted. This is how to make a horror tv series. Loved it.

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Arsenal 4 Coventry 0

Arsenal eased into the FA Cup fifth round thanks to Lukas Podolski’s two goals against Coventry City. In a match where 5000 away fans from Coventry were displaying their displeasure at having to see their home games played 35 kms away from Coventry. The 32,609 capacity Ricoh Arena was opened in August 2005, but following a rent dispute with the ground’s owners the club opted to play their home games at Northampton Town’s Sixfields Stadium starting in the 2013–14 season.

Mesut Ozil fed Podolski, who rounded keeper Joe Murphy to fire home, and the striker added a close-range header from Per Mertesacker’s flick-on. League One side Coventry rallied in the second half, with Leon Clarke hitting the post, but Olivier Giroud ended any doubt with a third from 12 yards out. Santi Cazorla got a late fourth from a similar range. Arsenal have not won a trophy since 2005 but remain in the hunt in three tournaments this season – the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup. They lead the league table by one point from free-scoring Manchester City, and face holders Bayern Munich in the last 16 of the Champions League. Podolski, who wasted chances to score a hat-trick, made his second start since August following a hamstring injury, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was starting for the first time since the opening day.

For the first half of the game Coventry barely saw the ball as the Arsenal players setup camp in their opponents side of the field. Towards the end of the first half, some of the floodlights went out but both teams agreed to play on until half-time, when the problem was fixed. After the break, Coventry were much improved and 18-goal top scorer Leone Clarke wasted two golden chances. Wenger blooded for the future when 16-year-old Gedion Zelalem replaced Oxlade-Chamberlain for the final 19 minutes but it was another two substitutes who added gloss to the scoreline.

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Never One Thing Or One Incident

Describe a memory or encounter in which you considered your faith, religion, spirituality — or lack of — for the first time.

It was never one thing or one incident that made me open my eyes and my mind  and call myself an atheist. I remember I was 13 when I started question the existence of gods (as my family is Hindu). I couldn’t believe that such things actually sat in heaven and ruled over the destinies of mankind by interacting with them from time to time. I’d say that although I stopped believing in gods or god (the Abrahamic concept of god is even more laughable) at the age of 13, I didn’t even know the meaning of the word atheist and so I didn’t call myself that. I just stated to people that I didn’t believe.

Although I wanted to. At one point I thought of genies and how cool it would be if I found 1 or several genies and they all had to grant me wishes (because that’s basically what praying is all about, you want something for either you or people you love). I was more of an agnostic at that age and it took me to the age of 19 to fully comprehend and understand what an atheist is (I had no books, fellow atheists and remember no internet to help guide me through this process). I battled it out as to what I was or what I believed  in. Some people were mean to me personally when I said that I couldn’t believe in a god or gods; nowadays I would laugh at the kind of comments people said (my age or older). Also as I pointed out to a few of my friends; even if I was wrong and such a creature called god existed, why the hell would people want to worship it? By all standards, it or they were unworthy or worship and love that was being bestowed upon by humans who believed.

So now, so many years later I am extremely comfortable with the label of “atheist”. Because it just means “one who does not believe in a god or gods”. The people who believe that there is some extra baggage that comes with the label are really stupid or ignorant or pretending or, worse, manipulated by their religion. I don’t claim to know anything for certain but I don’t have to – first the proof of a god or gods have to clear for everyone. And which god or gods! Then we shall talk about whether the fucker or fuckers are worthy of worship. So come up with the proof, until then – have a nice day! Besides, it important as to how you behave, how you treat other humans and animals and how you live your life without harming others and trying to get along with as many people as you can that matters! Not how much you “mentally masturbated”!

Oh and PS – if you think you can comment and “show me” the proof, I’ve heard all of them before and no it’s not proof of anything!

Prompt from the Daily Prompt At WordPress.Com.

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The Lost Tribe

The Lost Tribe is a 2010 film starring Emily Foxler, Nick Mennell and Brianna Brown with a small role by Lance Hendriksen. A year or more before the producers of the film made a movie called The Forgotten Ones also called After Dusk They Come. But writer Mohit Ramchandani & the production crew decided they had produced a movie that did not live up to the original expectations and decided to remake it with a new script, director and cast. This time Ramchandi turned producer with director Roel Reine at the helms and a screenplay by Mark E Davidson. Not sure how much of an improvement it is on the original, not having seen the first movie, but here’s what I thought of this one.

It is about a group of friends who are stranded on an unknown island after a boat crash. Yes! The movie starts off with a research team of scientists on a small island (somewhere in the Americas) excavating a dig sight and finding something of great importance. Turns out they have found remains of an ancient humanoid species that once and for all seals evolution as truth (duh! it has already been proven) and also serves as the “missing link” between apes & humans that scientists have been looking for. However this discovery is also leaked to the Vatican who pay a hitman and his team of mercenaries to kill off the research team and guides. The hitman and his soldiers reach the island and look for the research team but only find the leader of the expedition and question her. When she refuses to tell them where the rest of the team are she is killed but the mercenaries are soon attacked by an unseen force. Then we see 5 people on a luxury boat in the ocean on their way to Asia to settle some digital music deal that will make them rich. Anna, Tom, Joe, Alexis, and Chris are drinking and having fun but Tom sees a man drifting in the waters and they rescue him and treat the delirious man’s wounds. Instead of calling the coast guard and waiting for them to get the injured man, Tom decides to continue on for their meeting and find him help on shore. Injured and in shock, the stranger overrides the yacht’s autopilot at night and attempts to change the vessel’s course, but instead wrecks the boat on a rock and the vessel sinks.

Now why would he do that and why would the heading be that island? Tom also gives his girlfriend Anna a key in a ring box, to his apartment, but is also holding back an engagement ring for later. So now all of them are shipwrecked and they find the stranger, who was missing, now dead with his remains mangled and they decided to bury it in the sand. Searching the woods on the island Tom & Anna find a tent that belonged to the research team. Later they find the corpse missing and then argue when Tom reveals that the stranger had changed the directions and that it wasn’t equipment malfunction. Except for Anna the other 3 get upset with him so Tom moves away from the rest. At night he is awakened by a sound in the woods so the idiot goes to investigate and is attacked by something that swoops in from the trees. The next day the other 4 go in search of him but the noises in the trees and the thick bushes around them freak Chris & Alexis so they decide to head back to the beach but are attacked by things that jump from the trees. So far we don’t get to see these creatures as anything other than a blur (good job keeping the suspense). Joe & Anna find the excavation sight discover a nefarious plot by the Vatican to cover up a research team’s discoveries on the island before Joe is killed be an assassin sent by the church. As Anna runs away the hitman is killed by one of the creatures and Anna is all alone to fend for herself.

She finds out that the creatures are humanoid looking apes who kill and eat the humans and is chased into the woods when she gets caught in the thick sap of a fruit that grows there. This sap makes her “invisible” to the creatures and they don’t see the way we do but perhaps sense heat or something and the sap gives Anna camouflage. She then makes her way to their cave and find the creature, led by their leader who wears a skull headgear, eating her friends and other humans. She makes her way into the cave undetected and finds Tom who is badly injured and so he gives her the ring and beg her to kill him as he can’t be moved and does not want to be eaten alive. Cying, Anna suffocates him but the sound of the thick fruit extract on the stone floor catches the attention of the leader. To avoid him she jumps into the flowing waters and reaches another section of the jungle. But she is hunted by more of the creatures and has only a machete, that she took from the excavation site, as a weapon. Climbing a tree she is soon caught by the agile hunters and drops down, killing one of the creatures on impact. She is assaulted by the leader, who even shows a sexual interest in her but Anna manages to grab the machete she had dropped and the leader is impaled on it when he leaps at her to finish her off.

The death of the leader seems to stun the rest and holding the machete high, Anna imitates a war cry much like the way the creatures were doing. They look at her and leave her, jumping off into the trees, probably as a sign of respect for her having killed their most fearsome warrior. Anna stumbles through the woods back to the beach, buries the key in the sand and tries to make her way on a small inflatable dingy as the movie ends. While the movie is a rip of Predators, the acting quality and story telling pales in comparison and it is definitely a B grade film. Here’s the good part – the prosthetics are actually decent. The script calls for several creatures, and they have differentiation between them, including the leader. There’s good facial movement (a feat with full face makeups) and the actors seem very agile in the suits. They actually leap from trees and stuff, no CGI, which was damn impressive in full suits. 6 outta 10!

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If I Could Rename My Blog…

If I could rename my blog…

Back in November 2006 I decided to purchase my very own URL for my blog (which I bought 2 months later on an 1st 2007) and I had a lot of time to think as to what name & address I wanted for my blog/website. I had a few options in front of me and went back & forth trying them out loud and thinking as how they sounded. An hour before I registered the name I was down to three choices : a) Awake & Dreaming b) RoshanGKMenon and c) RGKonline.

As you know I settled on Awake & Dreaming . org (because .com was not available and plus they had a discount for .org URLs that week) and I have no regrets about the name as that pretty much describes what the blog and I am – I do day dream a lot. I tend to drift off into my made up universe when I am either alone or traveling in a bus, car etc. I also always go into this universe when I lie awake in bed just before I go to sleep. So no regrets and also it’s the name of an awesome song by Finger Eleven, a band that I like a lot.

If I wanted to have another name, like purchase another url and also have it point to my blog, would I go with RGK Online? Or something else? I’m not sure but at the moment this is it and I love it. My annual renewal of the webspace is up in a week and I will be adding another year. The URL was grabbed in November which is when it is up.