This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at abulsme@abulsme.com are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.

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May 2009
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Glad We Left

Just got a Zillow update in my email. The above is the decline in the value of our house in Florida since we sold it. Ouch! I’d hate to be the guy who bought it from us! It dropped another 8% just in the last 30 days according to Zillow, and the the chart doesn’t look like it has bottomed yet.

DVD: Blue Planet: Seas of Life (Discovery Channel Version): Disk 2

So, once again it was time for a DVD we own but haven’t watched, and it was time for the second disk in this set.

This disk had two episodes. The first was “Open Ocean”. In this episode the most striking and memorable bits were the huge shoals of small fish, especially as they became “bait balls” and were attacked by various predators.

But the second episode, “The Deep”, was the one that got my attention this time around. I’d of course seen various documentaries about deep ocean life before, but it is always just amazing to see shows like this that show the almost completely alien seeming forms of life, especially in the deep sea, but not at the bottom. Bioluminescent creatures that glow and sparkle and often look like some sort of aquatic space ship. Others with strange and bizarre shapes. Just overall weirdness. But absolutely fascinating… and beautiful.

Great stuff. So far I’m liking this series a lot. Disk three before too long I imagine. But something else will probably be next.

Cinema: Star Trek

So, of course, last week we went to see the new Star Trek on opening night. I’ve always remembered that I’ve seen ALL of the Star Trek movies on opening night, but the truth is I can’t fully remember the earlier ones, although I have a vivid memory of going to Star Trek II with my dad, and hearing the people leaving the showing before us whispering about what happened to Spock.

In any case, we went opening night to an IMAX theater, although it was one of these new “IMAX Lite” kinds of places rather than the full since museum size.

In any case, I don’t have a huge amount to add over the many thousands of reviews that have been published over the last week or two. As a reboot it was pretty great. Out of all 11 Star Trek movies, I’d say it is definitely in the top 3 or 4 or so. It was a lot of fun. It did fan service in all the appropriate places (plus some). It was fast paced with things happening the whole time. It was hokey and campy like the original series in places. And it did the reboot itself in a fairly clean way.

The weakest point though was actually the bits with Spock Prime. I mean, it was OK, and I know he is an old aged tired Spock, but he seemed to be dragging through it. Including just accepting as a given that the damage to the timeline was irreversible, and not seeming all that upset about it. In past time travel episodes, the people from the future have taken elaborate measures to restore the original time line. Of course, you can’t do that and still have a reboot. But it did stand out to me that while Spock Prime did mourn some events in the new timeline, he didn’t seem to mourn the destruction of the OLD timeline, and you would think he would.

And of course there are tons of plot holes, and places where you think “well, why don’t they just X”.

But hey, that is Star Trek for you.

All in all, it was fun, it was good, it was a worthy reboot, and I’m ready to watch Number 12 on opening night as well. :-)

Oh, and in a rare event for me, I’ve actually already seen it twice. A week after I saw it the first time, I saw it again with a bunch of people from work who were going. It was good the second time too.