Oct 032012

Another week, another split. Though exactly the opposite as last week, so both teams are now at .500.

The 2 Minuutin Varoitus- league team won by 74 points, probably the highest victory margin for my teams thus far. The opponent left a lot of points on the bench, and most of the ‘niners team members just kept pulling in points. Philip Rivers bounced back from the Bolts atrocious loss last week, Arian Foster was prolific as usual, and the Cowboys finally discovered the joys of passing game (both Witten and Bryant scored). But the highlighs were the two 20+ sources: Chicago Defense (for the second week in a row) and Roddy White (twin TDs against the Panthers).

The Yahoo game was a lopsided loss (machine-generated recap for those preferring procedurally added wit). Opponent’s main weapons were Roddy White, the Chicago Bears defense and Marshawn Lynch. Even with a respectable repeat performance by Jamaal Charles and a very promising game by Peyton Manning (3 TDs in a victory over the Raiders) the game wasn’t really close as the wide receivers had low-output weekend.

The bye season starts to impact the games in earnest, and as such more waiver wire action is needed (this week’s replacement of Nate Kaeding in the kicker position by Shayne Graham went OK).

Bring on week 5!

Oct 022012

Ticket to Ride: Heart of Africa box coverTicket to Ride expands to Africa in its third map collection.

Haven’t bought any of the collections. I have Switzerland as an independent game, and the Asian board in the iPad game.

The newest entry in the franchise hasn’t escaped controversy before release.

It’s quite expensive (30$) for a single board. And the board doesn’t even cover the whole continent, just the central parts. The cost is partially offset by the fact that the map comes with a new set of cards. And adding a second map would have necessitated a second set of destination cards anyway.

Oct 022012

Exhibit A: first purchased fiction book on Kindle: the original Stainless Steel Rat. I couldn’t find the paperback in the house and resorted to an electronic alternative. Thus far the experience has been a pleasant one.

Exhibit B: Neal Stephenson’s Anathem. After giving up on the Quicksilver trilogy halfway down the stretch, this is a trial whether I can still read his output. The slow build-up and the awkwardly twisted vocabulary got off to a poor start, but things are interesting enough to persist. The 900+ pages length is a bit spooky, though.

Oct 012012

X-Men 2 posterThis week’s Movie Monday challenge seeks out the best sequels in the land.

I’ve covered two great sequels in previous installments: there are only a few films that have improved on the originals as much as Empire Strikes Back and Godfather II did.

But they are hardly the only sequels that exceeded their originals: both Toy Story followups were better than the first Pixar film, Last Crusade is a better movie than Raiders of the Lost Ark, Dark Knight trumps Batman Begins.

But my choice falls on X-Men 2, a film by the original director, with the same cast and without the need to set up the world in detail. All those conspired to make Bryan Singer’s sequel one of the greatest superhero movies ever (going head to head with the aforementioned Dark Knight would be an even game). The story builds up quickly, and effortlessly weaves multiple plotlines into a coherent whole. New characters are introduced and a classic plotline foreshadowed. And there’s plenty of screentime given to the greatest of X-Men, Wolverine – here Hugh Jackman’s depiction of the character hits all notes and some bonus chords as well.

Too bad the franchise took a hit in its next installments. Only the most recent film, the First Class-prequel comes close to the lofty heights attained by this great sequel.

Movie Monday #62: Favorite Sequels.

Oct 012012

Today’s Fingerpori featured a surprising guest star: Jouko Piho, a quasi-famous “prophet”, whose blog at Uusi Suomi is often too painful to read.

He seems to have taken the strip rather well, after all, it is by no means a mean one. So there’s little danger to have it disappear from the archives (thus far just one strip has been censured).

Fingerpori 1.10.2012

Oct 012012

Movie Monday #61: My own Mary Sue - Uma Thurman as Mia Wallace in Pulp FictionAccording to Movie Monday (and contradicting common knowledge), a “Mary Sue” is a female character in a film, perfect in every which way.

Never thought much of the subject, and a quick trawling of the synapses doesn’t reveal anything extremely memorable.

Hence, I fall back to an old favorite Uma Thurman, as Mia Wallace, in Pulp Fiction. Reckless, beautiful and unique.

Movie Monday #61: My own Mary Sue.