December 2003


Check it out here.

…Sponge Bob SquarePants Barbie. Alyssa has her very own now, a must-have item.

Wow. What marketing team brought them together? The mind boggles just thinking about it.

It looks like Santa’s made through his travels, according to NORAD. My kids flipped over the Santa cam–they loved it.

Drew got little trading cards this week. You know, the ones that come in a pack with bubble gum?

Except that this pack had a little note on the wrapper: “Gum Included Not For Human Consumption.”

It smelled like petroleum, too. Does this make any sense? It must be to satisfy a legal requirement or something. I guess.

You may have heard of the Wilhelm scream, a sound effect of a man screaming that’s been repeated in movies since its origination in the ’50s. It’s not a kind of scream; it’s the actual recorded scream, the same sound bite that’s appeared in a number of movies over the past fifty years.

NPR has a current story on the scream–check it out here.

I’ve heard the Wilhelm in the Lord of the Ring movies, too. I haven’t heard it yet in The Fellowship of the Ring, but I bet it’s there. In The Two Towers, the scream happens a couple of minutes into the Battle of Helm’s Deep as a soldier falls from the wall. In The Return of the King the scream happens when **SPOILER ALERT–SPOILER ALERT** Legolas is crawling on the giant elephant and knocks an enemy soldier off. **END SPOILER ALERT**

It’s a fun thing to look for– you can Google it here, or see a nice quick rundown with a sound sample here. You can find a video montage of the scream at the bottom of the article on this page (48 MB video and smaller 27MB video).

Hmmm. I have a post on my blog (just a few minutes ago) that says “reading this on my phone in asia looks great dave!”

I have to assume this is my brother Joe, who is my only Pacific Rim reader (by now, perhaps my only reader!).

Pretty cool, Joe. I wonder what phone you have now that’s browsing the web? By the way, have a Merry Christmas (or happy holiday, or happy whichever holiday the Chamorro celebrate–hope I spelled that right). Stay out of the Philippines! I’ve heard there are some (literally) killer mudslides there.

If you haven’t already explored the Secret Diaries of the Fellowship link in the post I made a few days ago, you should probably know it gets, um, somewhat suggestive. That’s what I get for posting a link before I read it all the way through.

I still thought it was pretty funny; that stuff doesn’t really bother me (actually, physical smack-em-up humor like the Three Stooges is what bothers me–I just see people getting hit, nothing funny at all about that). But some of you may not think it’s all that funny. Cuidado, or whatever they say in Spanish (my wife has despaired of teaching me Spanish, as I speak it intermixed with broken high school French).

Before Saddam was captured, I think Bush didn’t have much of a slim chance for re-election. Even one of my (very?) Republican friends said “I was glad there was a Republican in office when September 11 happened, but I wouldn’t want him re-elected.”

So now Saddam is captured and a week later, I ask “Did this help the President’s chance for re-election? Or didn’t it really make a difference?”

I woke up yesterday and after running errands decided to watch Return of the King a second time. It was much better than the first time. the night before, I’d just been through 7 hours of movie already. I was also hearing book dialogue in my head during ROTK and being annoyed whenever the movie dialogue varied, however slightly.

The second time, I just saw it as a movie. Everything flowed. I highly recommend it.

Thanks to Bridget and Tony, who sat behind us at the King of Prussia Trilogy Tuesday triple screening:

The Secret Diaries of the Fellowship

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