Sunday, February 28, 2010

Olympic withdrawal?

Am I the only one who is already feeling Olympic withdrawal?

Technically the games are still on, but the Closing Ceremonies will commence as soon as this gold-medal hockey game is complete -- and I'm already feeling blue about this.

And you know what I'll miss the most this time around?? The commercials. Especially the ones involving Morgan Freeman endorsing that credit card company, haha.

Seriously, that guy could read me the phone book, and I would still be riveted.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Dear John reinvented

Nicholas Sparks's novel Dear John is one of my favourite books, and for the last year I've been anxiously awaiting the release of its movie equivalent in theatres. That finally took place earlier this month, and my friend Carla and I made a date to see it earlier today.

(You know, because we're both Nicholas Sparks junkies and all. Seriously.)

For the most part, I loved the film and was moved by many of it's scenes, just as I was by the book, but there were a few small differences to note:

- John is a US Marine in the book, whereas the movie version made him a Special Forces soldier in the US Army.

- The book describes Savannah as a brunette, but she's portrayed by blonde-haired beauty Amanda Seyfried in the film.

- Alan is Tim's brother in the book, not his son as the movie suggests.

There are a few other differences between the two formats and, as I indicated, they really are very minor -- except for one thing.

They changed the ending.

I realize that the movie versions of our favourite novels can never fully depict every little detail that we've come to appreciate in print..... but is it really necessary to alter the endings simply to suit Hollywood's preferences?

I really did love this movie, just as I loved the book, but the altered ending did leave me feeling a little betrayed.


Note: The casting of Channing Tatum as John and Richard Jenkins as his father was a brilliant move. They were both perfect for these roles. Check out the trailer below.....



Sunday, February 21, 2010

They had me at coconut rice

You may remember last summer when I gushed on here about how much I love everything to do with the Gamelan Grill  -- but, sadly, the restaurant closed its doors shortly after I submitted that post.

Oy, it's like I put a hex on them or something!

Since then, I've been desperately hunting for another restaurant that serves quality coconut rice, and I've had some luck with both the Rice Bowl Express and Tropika Malaysian & Thai Cuisine.

And, as of last night, I now have one more go-to place in which to attain my rice fix.

Some friends of ours (Hi Andrew & Stef!) invited us to dinner weeks ago, and we were finally able to join them for Thai food at the King and I restaurant last evening. It's pricier than most of the places where we would normally frequent, but we still had a great time for our once-in-a-blue-moon outing.

Stef had gushed about their coconut rice from the start, and it certainly didn't disappoint. Seriously, I would have been blissfully content to just sit there with nothing but a bucket o'rice.

(Okay, that and the banana-chocolate-ice cream-crepe dessert in which I also over-indulged. Ahem.)

Is it wrong that I could go for more coconut rice today??

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Yankee conformist

For the four seasons that it was on the air, The Unit was my favourite show. But as a general rule, my husband turns up his nose at all military-themed television dramas, and so he usually refused to watch it with me.

In his defense, after having served in the U.S. Army, he has a hard time accepting dramatized military television shows and will go out of his way to find flaws in their dialogue and techniques. That, and The Unit specifically featured an army Special Forces team..... and my husband "hated those guys" when in combat. (His words, not mine -- so, yeah, this is personal.)

But regardless of his own feelings towards The Unit, my husband was selfless enough to buy me the Season One DVD Box Set several years ago and has continued to support my fanatic tendencies as I've added to this collection over the years.

And, at long last, he finally caved in and agreed to watch the entire series with me from start to finish.

We haven't completed it yet because, really, who has the time to just sit and watch TV for that long of a stretch? But from what he's seen so far, there's no denying that my husband is now a fan of The Unit.

And, yes, I totally rub it in at every opportunity. ("UNIT LOVER...!!" is what I often shout while pointing at him and glaring with my all-knowing stare.)

Along those same lines, my husband has also been unabashedly anti-Olympics. I never thought such a creature existed, but then I went and married him.

I could understand his disdain for dramatized military TV, but the Olympics? Seriously? Who could hate something as wonderful and inspiring as the Olympics??

Back in 2008 when Beijing hosted the summer games, I was refrained from watching the Opening Ceremonies in favour of something else (probably Family Guy), and I've been a little bitter ever since. So this year, given that Canada is hosting the winter games in Vancouver, I was adamant that we watch the Opening Ceremonies live and in its entirety.

Yes, I really am that cruel.

But guess what? He actually enjoyed himself. Sure, the ceremonies dragged on and on, but he still got into it and barely complained at all. (Okay, that's kind of a lie. He made fun of its artsiness and failed-hydraulic pumps during the torch lighting, but still. I applaud his willingness to give the games a chance.)

Moreover, he's even gotten into some of the events with me, specifically the freestyle moguls and longtrack speedskating competitions. Sure, he only really likes the games when someone wipes out in a spectacular crash ("Come on, I'm a DUDE. That's why I watch NASCAR, too. It's only for the crashes."), but at least he's taken an interest in this with me.

And serving as the true indicator that he's moved over to the dark side with the rest of us is Facebook, specifically his status updates, which have all been Olympic-themed since the Games began on Friday.

Come on, get your pointer fingers and extended arms ready so you can say it with me: "OLYMPIC LOVER...!!"

At long last, the Yankee has conformed.