Memories For Sale

On a weekend road trip, far away from home, you stumble upon a garage sale in a neighborhood you’re passing through. Astonished, you find an object among the belongings for sale that you recognize. Tell us about it.

Hmmm, I am thinking what childhood item I can think of that I could place in here. If I were to be far from home and rummaging through a garage sale idly, not really looking for anything in particular but just browsing without an aim in sight. My teddy bear from when I was 4 years old or so? My Atari? My Knight Rider car model?

I had a musical electronic watch I liked a lot and a Lion head belt that made a lot of sounds as well as some toy guys. I really have no sentimental attachment to them. I had more connections with my cats and my dog. I wish I could have them again. Maybe some music and movies/tv shows but not much for toys or other stuff. Except for my Star Trek models but those I started collecting just last year.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Unboxing The Nausicaan Raider

Here is an alien vessel I rarely thought about until I saw that Eaglemoss has released a model of it. At first I was like, it’s not high up on my list of ships to get. Or anywhere near the middle of my wish list either. When I saw pics and review videos of the ship I wanted to get it and also I was able to get it from an eBay seller at a very low price.

IMG_20160130_192754

Nausicaan raiders were vessels employed by Nausicaan pirates during the mid-22nd century for raiding freighter routes. These vessels were armed with forward and aft plasma cannons and possessed primitive shields. Although their weapons were considered formidable to a Y class freighter, Nausicaan raiders were outmatched by NX-class starships, whose spatial torpedoes were capable of piercing Nausicaan shields. This type of vessel was described as “small” and “fast.” The bridge of a Nausicaan raider was scripted to be “dark,” although the final version of the room clearly features large, colorful wall panels. Also, the offensive and defensive specifications of a Nausicaan raider were scripted thus; “Medium yield plasma cannons. Simple (TECH) shielding,” where the word “tech” was later to be replaced by a more technical term. In the episode’s final version, this became, “Fore and aft plasma cannons,” and a less direct reference, immediately thereafter, to the craft having shields.

IMG_20160130_192809

Even though Nausicaan starships had never before been portrayed, inspiration for the forthcoming design was taken from how Nausicaans themselves had been established as typically behaving; due to their thuggish nature as belligerent troublemakers, their vessels had to have a fittingly threatening and aggressive appearance.

IMG_20160130_192829

Illustrator John Eaves began designing the Nausicaan vessel by sketching out a variety of basic shapes. “I just threw a whole bunch of stuff together,” he stated. These initial sketches included a design concept for a Vulcan ship, which Eaves had drawn earlier. The same ship layout, with blade-like curves, gave Eaves a design direction, which he expanded upon in the other sketches. As he became increasingly more inspired, Eaves felt the look he was aiming for was somewhere “between the bottom of a shovel and a manta ray.” The producers approved one of the initial illustrations as the final version, a configuration Eaves likened to a manta ray. “On this one, they chose a ship right off the first pass [….] It was a busy show, so I didn’t get to flesh it out a little bit more, but I didn’t need to.”

IMG_20160130_192819

Lead CG Artist Pierre Drolet took Eaves’ illustration and digitally turned it into a three-dimensional model. Drolet incorporated some of his own ideas into the design, shading the Nausicaan ship with an earthy color scheme, and added detailing such as the forward plasma cannons. All these finishing touches helped give the ship its highly sought-after aggressive look. These vessels could presumably travel faster than warp 1.8, the maximum speed of the Fortunate, for them to be able to constantly locate, track, attack, and raid said vessel over an extended period of time. Issue 30 of Star Trek: The Official Starships Collection lists the Nausicaan fighters as having a maximum speed of warp 2 and a length of 90 meters.

IMG_20160130_192800

So that’s the little information we have on the Raiders. I think it’s a neat design and manta ray look is just awesome. Hope you like the photos and now enjoy the unboxing video.

Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)

What is the best dream you’ve ever had? Recount it for us in all its ethereal glory. If no dream stands out in your memory, recount your worst nightmare. Leave no frightening detail out.

I have recurring dreams of this scenario. I am in a spaceship, which is kinda like the ones you see in Star Trek but smaller, almost like a large house. Other than the control panels and other gadgetry it looks like a very comfortable house. It is my spaceship and I live in it traveling through the stars. I am sitting in the living quarters, which is like a large living room with huge comfy sofas and recliners and ottomans in the middle.

In this dream I have just woken up from a nap in one of the recliners and I wake up to see an even sleepier Shawny, my beloved Golden Retriever who passed away back in 2005, lying on one of the recliners. She woke up a bit and started wagging her tail when I called out her name. In some versions of this dream I also have my cats, Chocolate & Lollipop who I had in my childhood, also napping on a sofa. As well as another golden, a male. The perfect set of pets eh? Two cats and two dogs! All of us are comfy and sleepy and look healthy and well fed. Perhaps we just had a nice big meal for lunch and were napping it off. Cause all of us are sleepy.

Outside it is a snow capped mountain range. The spaceship had landed on an uninhabited but beautiful planet with snow but still sunny in places. It is late afternoon and the sun is shining but it’s cold outside and cozy inside. We even have a fire in the artificial fireplace. I look at my pets and I am happy. I look to my left and on a side table was the leftover of my desert and a half empty pint glass of beer. Ah, so that explains the sleepiness. Are we the only residents on this spaceship? Oh no, my dream woman who is my wife and partner is also in the spaceship. She was in the other room and has just come in to wake me up and smiles at me as she looks at me. She is so hot, blonde, curvy and busty and she loves me. She kisses me and says “Time to get going”. And so I put in the corordinates for our next destination, a star system 2 days away and we take off into space.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Going For A Movie This Weekend?

Thinking of going for a movie this upcoming long weekend. I do watch quite a few movies at home every month as well as catch up on my currently showing tv series and I do have to find some time for rewatching stuff as well. So while my choice for a relaxing weekend will still be watching movies from home, I do like going to theatres. This is strange for me because from 2005 till earlier this year I never went to theatres at all. 11 years after being a guy who went for most English language movies that came out in Cochin, I just stopped going.

Back in February of this year I went for Deadpool with my buddy and I was hooked. Now I want to go for as many movies as I can. I plan to go for the big films, the action/scifi/superhero/horror stuff and some big budget other genre movies too. I was going for atleast 2 a month since March but last month I didn’t go for any at all. I missed a few films which I will catch on dvd or bluray later in the year. But I want to go for one this weekend. And I only go to either Cinepolis in Center Mall on MG Road or the PVR in Lulu Mall.

20160424_173419

Cinepolis is closer, much closer to me than Lulu PVR. It’s two stops away and also their VIP section is awesome. Sure the price is higher but they have recline seats and amazing comfort. Watching movies in recliners is awesome. I just love the VIP lounge area and waiting there is not tedious at all.

20160409_125627

Lulu’s PVR is a bit further away in Edapally and especially with the road work and Metro work going on it can be a task to get there; worse is coming back especially if it is in the evening after 6pm. They don’t recliners and they don’t have a VIP section but their theatres are good. Though the choice of seats is not as comfortable as Cinepolis and those cip holders are a disaster waiting to happen as it is so low on the arm of the seats.

20160701_14113020160227_124832

What about the popcorn? Head to head it is a tough choice. I will usually get a Pepsi (in PVR) or Coke (in Cinepolis), medium size always. The small / regular isn’t that big and the large is ridiculous – I will be peeing all the time if I drink that. And the one time I did order one, I couldn’t finish it even after the movie ended. But the popcorns are amazing – my pick is the Caramel popcorn in PVR & the Cheese in Cinepolis. Both are awesome but I do find that the caramel one is very light and easier to finish. Either way you can’t lose.

So where will I go this weekend? Wait and see!

Can’t Get Enough

Have you ever been addicted to anything, or worried that you were? Have you ever spent too much time and effort on something that was a distraction from your real goals? Tell us about it.

The internet. Hands down I am addicted to it and so are you. Everyone I know spends a lot of time online but I spend more than most. I do not shut it down unless I am watching a movie or tv show and usually am downloading stuff even when I do watch something. Even when I sleep.

Especially Facebook, Twitter and Youtube. Less of Twitter than before but the other two – yes, all the time. I can’t enough. I love watching videos that I have seen over and over again. I watch vlogs, travel stuff, interviews, cooking shows, real estate, music, sports etc etc. Youtube is really my cable tv now.  Facebook is also a huge addiction – I am in so many groups I can’t keep track of them all. I also manage two pages and am admin in a couple of groups.

I have two Youtube channels and as much as I like making my own videos, very simple on my hand held camera which is my smartphone with no edits or compressing or anything, I love other people’s stuff. Professionally done ones and simple ones like mine. I just love the Youtube community man. I gotta go now cause there are videos to be watched.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Five Is Fine

I so enjoy long weekends. Next weekend is an awesome one. Monday is a holiday and so is Wednesday. If only I could manage to squeak in a leave or adjust an off on Tuesday then I would be able to get 5 days off from work and enjoy myself. I wonder what I would do if I go 5 days off.

I guess I would relax a couple of days but maybe go to Fort Kochi on one of those days. I’ve been meaning to go to Fort Cochin (at the end of the city/district and which is the original Cochin and oldest part of the city) for the longest time. My mom’s place is Mattancherry which is just next to Fort Cochin and I used to go there a lot but it’s been ages since I’ve been to the area. I would also go to Lulu Mall again in Edapally on one of the days.

Also since Madhu is in town, maybe Anil, him and me can catch up on one day and go for a long lunch and drink some beer in some place. It will nice to hang out again. I really am looking forward to that.

I Want to Know What Love Is

We each have many types of love relationships — parents, children, spouses, friends. And they’re not always with people; you may love an animal, or a place. Is there a single idea or definition that runs through all the varieties of “love”?

Yes we love our parents and siblings, we love our relatives, we love our children, we loves our spouses, we love our friends and we love our pets. We can love an idea or an ideology or a town, city, country. There are many reasons why we love what or who we love. The single line that run through them is that we care about them so much, possibly more than we care about our own lives.

That is the main thing – you care more about them. You wish what is best for them, you want them to be happy and you want to be the main reason for that happiness. You get more joy in seeing that what you did for them has made them happy. That is true love. And ofcourse certain things about them can irritate you or make you mad but in the end that doesn’t really matter.

And you share and you like to spend time with them or in that place.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Battlestar Galactica Models

Battlestar Galactica is in my top 5 list of Favourite Science Fiction series & franchises. It’s either my 3rd of 4th fav but the first scifi franchise that I ever watched and hence it’s my biggest sentimental favourite. A big part of my childhood, they showed it on tv when I was 4 years old (I’m not sure if it was a rerun or the very first time that they showed it on Kuwaiti Tv) and then on and off in reruns for a couple of years. I had a couple of episodes of Battlestar Galactica and Galactica 1980 recorded on VHS tapes and my cousins from the UK also had some.

Many, many years later the original film was the very first DVD I ever bought, sometime in 2003, and I still have it here somewhere though I have still bought another better copy. And then ofcourse they rebooted the show in 2003 with the miniseries and the 2004-2009 series as well. I only watched the show for the first time back in 2011 and although I do agree that the newer version is well acted and is an awesome show, the original is still a big deal for me and I prefer that storyline.

Just somethings about the story and plot sticks with me a lot and several times during the week I find myself mentally revisiting the show. So it’s only natural that I should try and get some Battlestar Galactica models or kits and even some action figures. I have looked at getting some for quite a while now and my usual purchases since last year when I started buying scifi models and ships online have been restricted to Star Trek. But I have checked options for BSG and others and been eyeing several items from eBay and Amazon sellers.

Mostly I wanted the ships – the old & new Cylon Raiders, the Galactica herself and a few Cylon models. I have finally bought my first BSG related model, it’s the Cylon action figure you seen on the top left over there. This will reach me in a few days. Sometime next month I am looking at getting the old and new Cylon Raiders as well from Habro. They are smaller than Eaglemoss’s Star Trek collection but they look good and are mostly diecast.

 

Dust My Shelves

What’s the household task you most dislike doing? Why do you think that is — is it the task itself, or something more?

Dusting and cleaning. Oh I hate dusting and cleaning the book shelves and my desk. I hate dust in general and because I have bronchitic asthma, it makes it even worse for me. So I usually leave it to quite late and only dust if I just simply have to.

But I live in an area where though there isn’t much traffic it does get quite dusty. A weekly dusting is what could be needed but who has the time for that. I try to clean once in a month or 45 days and it still is not enough. I got this 6 rack shelf on which my Star Trek starships are displayed and I have a few things on the top of the shelf as well. They get dusty really quick. I also plan to get another shelf sometime this year and well it really will mean a bunch of time spent on cleaning it.

And because of the way the models are and the stands you need to be careful. I broke one because I was cleaning it and it slipped from my hand and broke. That is tough.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Now You See Me

I have always been fascinated with magic and magic shows that the best magicians have put up. Now You See Me is a 2013 American heist thriller film with lots of doses of magic directed by Louis Leterrier and written by Ed Solomon, Boaz Yakin & Edward Ricourt. The film features an ensemble cast of Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Mélanie Laurent, Isla Fisher, Dave Franco, Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman.

The movie starts with four street/stage magicians who are each brought together to one place, an apartment in NYC, when a mysterious stranger places an invite on each of them. At the apartment, they meet each other and find information from an unknown benefactor. This makes the 4 of them join forces. A year later, the four perform their first major performance as the Four Horsemen in an elaborate Las Vegas show funded by insurance magnate Arthur Tressler heir final trick appears to transport one of the audience members to the vault of their bank, the Crédit Républicain in Paris, where stacks of new euro bills are stored. At the magicians’ commands, the fans in the vault activate, drawing the bills into the vents and then showering the Las Vegas crowd with them. The euros are shown to be real, and the vault in Paris is found to be empty of its recent shipment of euros, leading FBI agent Dylan Rhodes, and Interpol agent Alma Dray, to be partnered and investigate the Horsemen.

The two question the magicians but other than getting dazzled by some magic tricks they get nothing. Rhodes & Alma turn to Thaddeus Bradley, a former magician who has since gone to help explain the tricks behind other magic acts. He shows the FBI how the magicians used a mock vault under the Las Vegas stage, and that the group must have stolen the money in Paris before it arrived at the bank, replacing it with flash paper that left no evidence. The FBI with Thaddeus and his entourage follow the Horsemen to their next show in New Orleans, where their final trick appears to transfer millions of dollars from Tressler’s private accounts to those in the audience, mostly made up of people that were denied insurance claims by Tressler’s company in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Dylan and Alma try to capture the four but the magicians elude capture. Tressler hires Thaddeus to expose the Horsemen in revenge for the loss of his money. Alma meanwhile has researched the Horsemen and determines they are connected to a group called the Eye, a small group of magicians that claim to have access to real magic. She finds out one of the Eye’s members, Lionel Shrike, had previously been exposed by Thaddeus but died in a locked-safe escape trick he was performing to try to regain his standing. Alma suspects a fifth person is aiding the Horsemen.

They track the magicians to a NYC apartment where the four are burning their paperwork and any material that can track their assets. While the other three make their way through another entrance while Jack stays behind to continue burning the paper and fights off Dylan and then escapes in a stolen car. Jack loses control of his car, causing it to flip and catch fire. Dylan is unable to save Jack, but manages to recover the papers, pointing to the Horsemen’s next planned crime, stealing millions of dollars in cash out of a large Elkhorn safe. Dylan, Alma, and Thaddeus find the safe has already been stolen, and when they track it down, its contents have been replaced with balloon animals. The three remaining magicians broadcast their final show’s locations where the FBI converges to apprehend them. The remaining Horsemen appear to the crowd, giving their fans a farewell and a message about an ulterior purpose, and then run to jump off a roof; Dylan attempts to shoot them but Alma holds him back. The three jump, turning into a shower of money over the crowd. The money is counterfeit, but the audience’s race to collect it prevents the authorities from tracking the real Horsemen.

Later that night Thaddeus walks to his car and finds it full of the stolen money from the Elkhorn safe, and he is arrested. Dylan speaks to Thaddeus in jail, where Thaddeus slowly comes to realize that Alma’s theory was correct, and Dylan was the fifth Horseman. Dylan quietly walks away. Elsewhere, the Horsemen, including Jack who had faked his death, meet at the carousel in Central Park, and use their tarot cards to turn it on. Dylan arrives and welcomes the four to the Eye. Later in Paris, Dylan meets Alma and reveals he is Shrike’s son. He brought the Horsemen together to get retribution for his father’s death: the Elkhorn Safe Company for providing a faulty safe that led to the accident, Thaddeus for humiliating him and the Crédit Républicain and Tressler’s insurance companies for failing to pay out afterwards. With her having feelings for him, Alma doesn’t reveal his secret to the authorities and ecides not to turn him in. She takes a lock and a key that Dylan produces, putting the lock on a chain fence and throwing the key into the Seine.

Some really good scenes, lots of magical stuff and a  good chase scene or two, reminiscent of heist movies like Ocean’s 11 but a lot of fun and excitement too. I give it a 7.5 outta 10 as there isn’t much scope for acting to really shine at all but it’s a good fun film.

Someone Else’s Island 5

We’ve all been asked what five objects we’d take with us to a desert island. Now it’s your best friend’s (or close relative’s) turn to be stranded: what five objects would you send him/her off with?

Depends on which friend it is, I have a couple:

  • a case of beer
  • Shaving kit to shave off the beard and perhaps hair too
  • a blanket
  • mp3 player with a large selection of awesome music
  • hunting knife

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com

Chill Down

A sanctuary is a place you can escape to, to catch your breath and remember who you are. Write about the place you go to when everything is a bit too much.

At the moment it is home. Especially when I am alone at home. It really is a nice place to be. Especially with this weather and how cool things are. Also it is quiet. We don’t have neighbours in the next apartment at the moment and it has been that way since the previous tenants left to the bigger building opposite ours. The owners are in no rush to get a replacement renters it seems and that suits me fine.

So we have a nice quiet building, other floors have families in them and there are some kids too but they aren’t on the floors near me. Atleast the kids nearer to my floor are quieter I guess. So if I am alone at home, I have some beer stocked up in the fridge and I can order some pizza for delivery, then I am golden! I cannot enjoy a better way to spend a nice quiet day at home. Or I can order some fried chicken or Chinese from the restaurant close to me and enjoy my food and my beer in peace.

Ofcourse watching some favourite movies will be perfect. Or maybe a live football match. Or some live concert playing on the dvd player. Any of these things will do me good.

Prompt from The Daily Post at WordPress.com