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The Last Panda Post. Promise.

by Richard

Look, dudes, sometimes you just get into a groove. I mean, it’s happened to you dudes before, right? Right? I’m not alone in this one am I?

Well, regardless. Let’s consider this the last panda post for a considerable time. This one is just a whole lot of fun, though.

Kung Fu Panda was a really good movie, both the original and the sequel. Oddly. I mean, most sequels are trash and animated movies doubly so. This one, though, this one actually came through.

And, considering the title, it was only a matter of time until someone merged the visuals with the iconic music of Carl Douglas. You know the one I mean.


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Is It Nessie? On Ice?

by Richard

Rumors of giant monsters are nothing new. Pick out any people on any continent and there’ll be rumors of some vast, horrible creature living out in the middle of nowhere.

There’s the Yeti in Nepal. Nessie in the Loch Ness. Sasquatch in North America. (Insert joke about bloated, do-nothing US Congress here. Assume it’ll be really, really funny)

Apparently, there’s another monster to add to the family invite list during reunion time. Okay, this one has been around for a while, first sighting in 1345, but it’s a new one to this dude and that’s what counts. I mean, nothing counts until it’s noticed by an American, right?

Anyway. The monster is called Lagarfljótsormurinn. It’s found in Iceland and is a river/lake monster.

The story goes that a woman put a special worm on a gold ring to make it grow. Why a worm on a gold ring would make the ring grow, they don’t say. I think it’s something phallic, but that’s probably just me. I’ll leave it up to your imagination. Anyway, the woman came back and found, to her horror, the gold was just the same, but the worm had grown large and turgid. (nothing to see here. Move along.)

Terrified, the woman firmly grasped the worm in her two strong hands, struggling with it as she raised it up and down, up and down, until finally shoving it into the deep, wet depths of a lake. Along with the gold ring. Nope. No subtext there in that legend.

So the Lagarfljótsormurinn has been living in Iceland for a while, but sort of on the QT. Now, though, it’s cover has been blown thanks to the ubiquitous nature of video cameras on cell phones. There’s video proof(ish) of the monster’s existence!

A local, and by local I mean Icelandic, newspaper has some great video of the supposed lake monster. Go check it out. The site is in Icelandic so you might want to translate it. Of course, the translation is, like most computer-assisted translations, wildly original in its use of word and meaning, but it does (sort of) get the point across.

It might be nothing, but, then again. It might be something. And you’ll be able to say you saw a river worm grown large and turgid. Or maybe not.


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Dude Review: Captain America

by Richard

Listen closely, dudes, I am not damning with faint praise here. Captain America is the best of the superhero movies that came out this summer.

It’s also one of the best movies to come out this summer. Period.

Can you tell that I loved the movie?

With all three of the young dudes out of town and my wife, known to me as She Who Must Be Working On Her Charts All The Time, not available, I had to go see the movie all on my lonesome. I couldn’t even pretend I was going with the young dudes. It was all me. And I was okay with that.

I’ve been a comic-book geek for so very long it’s a little late for me to start denying it now.


The big stumbling block for me going in to this movie had to have been the CGI shrimp. That is, buff star Chris Evans, had his face superimposed over the body of a 98-pound weakling for most of the movie’s first act. I’m not a big fan of the uncanny valley where people almost look like people, but this wasn’t actually that distracting. Using the muted color palate that brings to mind sepia-toned yesterdays, the movie actually made the CGI body in the WW II era.

Steve Rogers has been turned down five times in his desire to serve in the armed forces during World War II. At one point, he’s asked if he’s anxious to go over and kill a lot of Nazis. Steve replies that, no, he doesn’t want to kill anyone. He just can’t stand bullies. And that, right there, encapsulates who Captain America is and should be.

The casting is uniformly excellent, starting with Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America. Stanley Tucci as Dr. Erskine, the inventor of the super soldier serum that transforms Rogers from a bit player in his own story to the pinacle of human achievement known as Captain America, is amazing.

Working as a lead-in to 2012’s Avengers movie, Captain America does its share of heavy lifting in that department, but never gets bogged down by the responsibility of setting up the next movie. The script is funny, fast-paced and dramatic. It’s got lots of explosions for the little dudes and lots of just-plain fun for everyone.

For the comic-book geeks out there, the movie’s got a ton of Easter egg moments that only serve to give that little extra that can take a movie from good to great. This movie is great.

I’d give it an easy 5 dudes out of five. Seriously, get yourself to the movies right now and start enjoying.

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