Why I Gave “World War Z” the Book, 3 Stars.

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

My 3 star rating comes with a huge caveat.

Seeing the movie first spoiled this book for me. Had I read it first I would have been much more intrigued about piecing together the different the story to understand the larger timeline. Instead, I already knew the story so the book felt like a post-war mop up with nothing new to add.

What I was really hoping for was more character development. I felt like having people interviewed gives us an impression of who they were as they told their stories, but all of the narrative was in hindsight, some stories told many years after the fact.

Being able to look back on your life of the last ten years allows you to see the big picture and put things together you can’t do when you are going through it. What I would rather have had, was being on the journey of any of the interviewees throughout their time so you see them changing and fighting, good and bad, etc.

Again, I’m being picky b/c I needed something else to make the book seem fresh since the movie spoiled so much for me.

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What a beautiful way for a company to show it’s willingness to go the extra mile to help it’s customers. I made it 30 seconds into the video before tearing up…or in man terms, I got something caught in my eyes. I feel very blessed to have a loving, healthy family…everything a father wants/needs for a happy and special Father’s Day. 

No one cares. The sooner we embrace that….

The irony being this is a content piece developed to promote another social blogging/writing site. The world needs another tumblr/medium like we need another social network. 

Why I am taking a break from Facebook Twitter and LinkedIn.

I watched this video over the weekend and felt the need to change how I interact with people online. While I have many connections, I don’t feel the quality of those connections is as strong as before the introduction of social networks. Posting updates makes it too easy to speak and too hard to listen. When we post we aren’t thinking about speaking to a particular person or audience we are speaking to everyone. That’s not a conversation that’s broadcasting. We also don’t stop to provide context for our statements. It becomes an exercise in writing for quick attention, headline grabbing and “like” acquisition.

What I plan to do instead is go old school. Videos on my professional blog. Photos in my personal blog. Using email to keep tabs on my valued relationships.

I need something that forces me to consider my audience more, to provide more context and value, and to develop more two way conversations.

If you’ve ever blogged before you know it’s more time consuming than a simple tweet. You have to think through what you are going to say and develop those thoughts more. It forces you to be more motivated about speaking and place a higher value on connecting with an audience to ensure they get what you are talking about.

At another level I’m also taking a break bc I am burned out on social. It’s a labor intensive process to read through 3-5 feeds per day and decide what’s valuable to me, what I should respond to and what I should ignore. It leaves me with nothing left to make a meaningful connection. Plus, when it’s what you do all day for work, finding the energy to do it for personal use has become harder and harder. I just don’t care anymore. But I do care about my relationships.

Knowing my ability to stick to things this may not last a week. But I’m going to try anyway and see what I learn.

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Sorry I dogged you last night Ringo, it wasn’t really your fault.

I was pretty harsh on Ringo last night, and I’m here to apologize. 

Having had the night to think on the performance I’m much more understanding of Ringo, and upset with CBS and Paul McCartney. 

When I heard Ringo and Paul were performing together again I had high expectations and was looking forward to it. I thought that we would see something special. So I had my hopes up that both of them would do something together unique and contribute equally. Maybe Ringo would sing with Paul, or just play drums, I was cool with both.

What we got, for me, was a big disappoint that I felt did a disservice to Ringo. Ringo didn’t make a significant contribution to the music and he also didn’t have any kind of interplay with Paul.

I wasn’t expecting them to trade fours or sing a love duet, but I did expect both to make a significant contribution to the music. It felt like Ringo was kind of an add-on as the second drummer. Yes he was highlighted with the spotlight but it was clear the Paul McCartney’s main drummer was the lead drummer and was providing all of what was going on.

When the producers would show Ringo, he didn’t seem to know where they were and wasn’t playing a real contributing role in the music. The producers should have focused on him as a close up and not tried to focus on his playing. 

The most disappointing part of the performance was Ringo not being given an opportunity to have any kind of significant role in the music they played together.

The performance felt lazily put together without much care or foresight to what the audience would want. The reason why they were forced to be together in the first place was the CBS producers wanted to promote the fact they had the Beatles salute show coming up in a few weeks. I also think Paul McCartney should’ve done better by his boy. He could have spent some time thinking through what they could have done together that was meaningful to the performance. We we got was a disappointment. 

The 5 Ways I Would Spice Up Walking Dead

Walking Dead has gotten off to a slow start this season…one episode featured Rick packing a car for a whole segment. Very exciting stuff. Below are my suggestions for bumping up the pace and excitement.

1. More sex. It’s the end of the world. Most of these characters won’t make it out of the episode much less season. We’ve had two to three sex scenes in four years and one of those involved the uber-creepy “Governor” and highly annoying Andrea. Put down the protective devices and bust out the lube and toys. And don’t be afraid to get carnal with a zombie…at least you know they will go all night.

2. Head back to the farm. Season 2 was stationed at Herschel’s farm, and we thought THAT was a snooze-fest. Season 4 makes the farm look like a Paul Greengrass movie after snorting an eight ball.

3. Have a “Red-wedding” episode. Invite all of the characters that have been on the show the longest, like Rick, Daryl, and Carl over to a feast or wedding put on by the new and unsuspectingly nice group that have started a collective in the next town over. While at dinner kill off our beloved characters so we are forced to start the series over with new people. Bask in the outcry of fans who can’t believe you killed off so many people…and who also call themselves out for having not been true fans in the first place or else they would have read the books and known what’s coming.

4. Have the characters build a new website for our healthcare system. Without access to modern telecommunications, power, or anyone in the group familiar with network  applications, the group still manages to build something better than the piece of shit we have now.

5. Time to start running out of bullets. Stop using the “unlimited bullets cheat” like it’s a game variant in Halo. By now all  the bullets ever made have been exhausted, especially with the terrible shots we have on cast. Try fighting your way through a horde of 50 zombies with a pick ax and sword and see how long those little kids and one-legged Herschel make it.

How would you spice up the Walking Dead this season?

Ignorant Fans Blame Romo…Smart Ones Blame Jerry

It’s easy to see when a QB fails, we see him throw a bad ball or INT or fail to avoid a sack. It’s harder to see how poorly an interior lineman holds his gaps, or pivots off his initial assignment to pick up a weakside rusher. That’s WAY beyond 95% of fans.

The Cowboys had one of the best Olines in history under Aikman and he took advantage, along with having arguably the best running back ever. Teams had to compensate for a power run game, deep WR threats that ran disciplined routes and a QB with great accuracy. The current team has none of that, the running game is a shell of our former greatness, we pick up spare Olineman the week before our season starts b/c the guy we had was worse than expected. Our receiver core is painfully inconsistent in route running and in just staying healthy.

Add all that up with a QB in Romo that admittedly tries to do too much but it’s bc he has shit to work with and takes it on himself to try and win games.

The real culprit in all of this is the GM/Owner, a man that thinks he knows talent and how to build a team, but who through terrible terrible drafting has decimated this team with massive holes throughout the squad. He also neuters the effectiveness of his scouts and coaches by consistently overriding their professional opinions to satisfy his own “Wildcatters” instinct. If you are a big enough idiot and asshole to think 500 coaches could have won those two 90’s Super Bowl’s, you are bound to tank a storied franchise in the shit for as long as you think you have any idea what you are talking about.

Please folks,  cut Romo some slack, he’s trying to win games with a farce of talent around him. Save your venom and frustrations for the only person responsible for almost 15 years of futility.

Image courtesy of http://swagstein.blogspot.com/2011/09/jerry-jones-is-officially-outside-of.html