Casino Royale/Parkour


So how about that new Bond film, eh? That’s what I’m talking about. The past few Bond films, which make up most of what I’ve seen of the series, have kind of put me off — to me, Bond came across as a decadent jackass. There’s little of that in this film. Daniel Craig as Bond is hard, cold and deadly. It’s still Bond — there are plenty of gorgeous women, explosions, and high-end cars. But family friendly? Ah… not so much. The pre-title sequence, beautifully shot in black and white, features Bond destroying a bathroom, ultimately drowning a guy in the sink. Think along the lines of Borne Identity/Supremacy, but grittier.
Update: Here’s Mark Kermode’s review.

***

The film has a fantastic opening sequence where a bad guy literally runs up a steel beam at a construction site, at one point jumping from a crane to the top of a building (meanwhile Bond plods along after him like a ton of bricks). I got queasy watching parts of it. I’d seen the type of motion the bad guy was using before; it’s a French sport/art/philosophy called Parkour aka Urban Freeflow:

Parkour is a physical discipline inspired by human movement, focusing on uninterrupted, efficient forward motion over, under, around and through obstacles (both man-made and natural) in one’s environment. Such movement may come in the form of running, jumping, climbing and other more complex techniques. The goal of parkour is to adapt one’s movement to any given obstacle.

It’s really something to behold. Here’s a few videos:

Exposé trick: The tab key

Note: if you’re running Mac OS X, read on. If not, you can skip this entry.
So I just discovered a neat trick in Exposé I hadn’t read about before, so I thought I’d post about it.
It’s actually really simple. So, you know how Command-tab brings brings up a centered list of icons representing your running applications and you can tab to the one you want?
Well, it looks like Apple engineers thought of a neat way to extend this idea. Bring up Exposé (either via F9 or F10, unless you’ve changed the defaults) — and press the tab key… Poof! All the windows from the next application in line are brought on-screen in a nifty animation. Press tab again to make that application’s windows fade out of view, and show the next application. When you reach the app you want, simply press return or escape, and you’ll be working in that app. Note that the shift-tab trick, to cycle backwards, here works too, just like when you’re command-tabbing. Neat!

On Brian’s post/Cam-Melissa’s new Condo/Sunday pickup/Jeff BBQ/New card reader [was “Good weekend”]

Well hello again, it’s me, Krishen. Kind of strange having to say that on my own blog.. Anyway, that’s Brian. Part of the reason I got him to write an entry is because he’s blogophobic… both reading and writing them. He figures, why generate more clutter on the internet?
Because it’s awesome clutter? Haha. Anyway, had a good weekend; spent most of it with Cam and Melissa helping them move into their new place. Saturday was the big day; myself and seven others came over and moved boxes, mattresses, sofas, toys, and a giant china cabinet. Managed to get it all stuffed into a single-17 foot U-Haul… well, almost. We used a few cars too.
Their new place is great; it’s a two-level condo (townhouse?), with tile floor on the first floor and a big, carpeted second floor. It was funny, on Friday, during my sneak preview, the whole place had that “new” smell, which I’m pretty they must sell in a can. After we got everything moved in, Cam and Melissa treated us to chicken burgers, munchies and beer… all of which hit the spot. Meanwhile, we weren’t able to return the U-Haul because it wouldn’t start — something U-Haul blamed on Cam and Melissa — naturally a subject of some consternation. A mechanic U-Haul *finally* agreed to send out on their nickel couldn’t get it started, and had the wrong size tow-truck so couldn’t tow it either, so it would have to wait until morning. After some further cleanup we ended the night with a couple episodes of Firefly, and I curled up on an air mattress in the guest bedroom. A new technician got the truck started Sunday morning (low battery), and I headed home around noon.
Shortly after that, I made a few phone calls and got word out about the Sunday pickup Ultimate game, that now starts at 3pm. Turnout was still a little low (we had fours plus a sub), but it was better this week than last, and I expect that trend to continue. Yay! I like Sunday pickup — the emphasis is more on playing well personally rather than win-at-all-cost. Don’t get me wrong, I love winning, I just wish more fingers were pointed *inwards*. After all, as has been said many times, “it’s just city league”. Hardly worth the steam I see coming from some heads.

Self portrait (click for big)

Some of the Sunday pickup kru
Finally, immediately following pickup, Jeff had Kemp and I over for an installment of his famous BBQ sessions. I stuffed myself and enjoyed an evening of the latest 360 masterpieces, including Lego Star Wars 2, Oblivion, Dead Rising and Tombraider: Legend. Whew! I had a blast, but by the time I left at quarter to 11, I was dead (and still had laundry to do). Fun nonetheless 🙂
Bought a replacement card reader today for $20. The only one that did Compact Flash II, read 20 other formats. I am now ready for anything!
Hee. Anyway… that’s the news and you are up to date!

with a cherry [coke] on top

[And without further ado, here’s Brian’s first post -Krishen]
        I have this very morning rediscovered Cherry Coke. Once my passion in the dark-ages of high school, this fine brown elixir has found its way into my heart once again. To give you some context: I used to drink at least two 12oz cans of the stuff a day, much to the delight of my then-girlfriend who discovered it made an excellent proverbial-carrot. As I rewrote myself in college, I phased the drugs known as soda and television out of my life in favor of those with more staying power and thus Cherry Coke was forgotten. When I began my career as a professional alcoholic (read ‘software developer’), sodas of various flavors trickled back into my beverages as mixers in my holy quest to find the perfect mate for Vodka.
        Have you ever stopped to consider how the selection of sodas for a given multi-flavor fountain is chosen? Restaurants, bars, and the like have machines offering 6, 8, and sometimes as many as 16 flavors but how often do you see Cherry Coke? Such businesses, if they offer Coke products at all, usually have Coke and Diet Coke but frequently neglect Cherry Coke unless they happen to sell pizza. Has there been some secret market research that links pizza and Cherry Coke as a match made in heaven? Pizza joints aside, Cherry Coke from a fountain is a rarity these days and personally I have never seen it in a bar which means my exposure to it in recent years was minimal. Couple this with the fact that the packaging for the product has also changed several times in recent years and it seems as if somehow the product was trying to evade my consumption altogether. What did I ever do to you, Cherry Coke, if not appreciate you? Are you bitter that I left you by the wayside in favor of other drugs? I assure you, its not you, its me.
        Later, when I joined the software industry full-time, I was inundated with free soda in the workplace and worse than that, a democratic power to influence the flavors available to me. I sullied my innards with the likes of Mountain Dew and Dr. Pepper primarily for their caffeinated prowess. I frowned upon coffee drinkers but there was a small void inside me where my beverage-satisfaction should be… until today.
        I was surreptitiously scanning the refrigerator to steal a caffeine-source from our sister company when I found one of those oddly long-and-thin 12-packs of Coke in the fridge. With ninja-like stealth, I made it safely back to my desk, crack the can, and take a victory sip only to find my past flooding down my throat: Cherry Coke! I take a second look at the can in my hand and find that sure enough, the packaging has a subtle cherry drawn upon it despite looking a hell of a lot like the Coke Classic packaging of modern day. Once again reunited with my syrupy lover of yore, I savored her inner juices… I am sorry I ever left. Now where can I get some fucking pizza this early in the morning? <3 ~B

Guest poster, Brian B

I’ve just created an account on this here blog for my long time friend from my Microsoft days, Brian B. Brian is a software developer from Chicago and is highly addicted to … well, anything you can get addicted to. He will be doing guest posts from time to time. Please welcome him!