Showing posts with label holidays. Show all posts
Showing posts with label holidays. Show all posts

Monday, February 20, 2017

President's Day: What's the Deal with Grover Cleveland?

This is Grover Cleveland.  It is not a picture of me taken from the year 2045.


So, every President's Day (here in the U.S.) I try to write up a President of the United States, and some years I base my post on having had read a book or two.  But years like this year - I do some Googling and try to quickly educate myself about a President I don't know much about.

Grover Cleveland is one of those Presidents you could probably pick out of a line-up thanks to the mustache and glaring eyes, but other than that - you may not have the slightest inkling of what he was about.  I know I didn't.

Interesting factoid:

Monday, February 13, 2017

Romance in Genre Fiction! A Signal Watch Valentine's Day Post



Well, I can't say a whole lot of you participated here, so I guess I know where we're at these days.

Our prompt:

cite The Best Romantic Scene from a Not-Particularly Romantic Movie. TV Show, Book or Comic Book™

We were looking for romance in sci-fi, adventure, action, etc...

I played a bit of dirty pool and took Superman and Lois Lane off the table as the greatest romance in genre fiction.  If you follow this site, you know my opinions on the characters and the romance, and I think it's done more to influence romance in genre fiction than nearly any other story.  But, I'm biased.

I didn't really read Superman back when it was the Clark/ Lois/ Superman love triangle, I showed up after they were already married, and worked my way back.  I have a deep fondness for married Lois and Clark, but I love the version where she doesn't know who he is just as much.  But for my dollar, the recent "married with a kid" version in the comics is a welcome new angle on the Super-mythos, however this winds itself up.

And, of course, it's hard to find anyone who doesn't cheer for Han and Leia as maybe the finest genre-fiction romance of the last fifty years.  Heck, Jamie sometimes wears a necklace I got her that has "I Love You"/ "I Know" engraved into it.

So let's get past some of my favorites and hear what other folks had to say.

Good news is that we got some good posts in from Jamie and Stuart.  I mean, really good stuff!  Could not be happier.

And, if you didn't remember to post before or now you want to chip in - go crazy!  That's why we have a comments section.

From Jamie:


I went back and forth on this one as to whether or not to submit this scene, but ultimately decided what the hell. If I embarrass myself, who the eff cares, right? 

Ok, here goes:

Thursday, February 2, 2017

You Tell Us: What's the Most Romantic Scene in a Genre Movie, TV Show, Comic Book or Book?

Lois loves a tall glass of Cold Duck

Ah, l'amour.

It is February, and February is the month of so many things .  But as we're not qualified to discuss Black History Month and we'll cover President's Day on President's Day, let's talk about what we do get...  Genre Film, Comics and Romance!

Oh, yeah.  I'm super romantic.  I'm the walking embodiment of one of those Time-Life CD compilations.  I'm romantic as hell up in here.

But I don't want to tell you what's romantic - YOU TELL ME (and, by default, everyone else).

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)



We'll sign off for Christmas Eve with Darlene Love performing her classic "Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)".

I've said it before and I'll say it again - seeing Ms. Love perform this live was one of the greatest live music experiences of my life.

Merry Christmas.  May we have peace on Earth and goodwill to all.


Happy Christmas Eve from The Signal Watch


Jamie and I wish you a very merry Christmas Eve.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Christmas Watch: Arthur Christmas (2011)



I'm not going to write this up, because... well, whatever.  It's Christmas.  I got stuff I'd rather be doing.  But this movie was better than I thought it would be, and has some pretty funny stuff for the adults in a family-friendly/PG way.

I am kind of sick of the paramilitary strike force elf idea which seemed everywhere a few years ago, but if you can grit your teeth through the first part, lots of pay-off.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Happy Holidays From The Signal Watch


Right about now, most of you will be wrapping up your usual routine to begin setting in motion the rituals we go through at the end of the calendar year.  I don't expect that, by tomorrow, much of anyone will be making time to check with us here at The Signal Watch, if you haven't already had to put down the iPad for a few days as the in-laws are now arrived, etc...

So, while I have you - I want to wish you the Happiest of Holidays.

In this year of all years - no matter your creed or philosophy - I wish you peace, love, health and plenty.  And, as always, hope for a better tomorrow.

My wish for Christmas is for us to do something every day that I fail on a daily basis.  May we see the best in each other, treat one another as we would our loved ones, consider those we don't know as potential friends.  Let's do right by each other.  We're all we've got.

We can be a great people.  We can wish it to be.  We need only find the light within to show us the way.

As Christmas may not be your bag - Happy Holidays.  As it well may be, and because I hope your Decembers 24th and 25th are good days - Merry Christmas.




Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Watch: Miracle on 34th Street (1947)


I've seen Miracle on 34th Street (1947) probably a dozen times, so it seems unlikely I haven't written it up before.  If you've never watched it, or the 1990's version, you should know that the 1990's version is mostly a treacly, charmless exercise in unearned sentimentality.  Which is weird, because the cast is pretty good, so you have to just dislike the changes to the story and the bland direction.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Christmas Watch: Scrooged (1988)



Way back in the long, long ago of 1988, I saw Scrooged in a sold-out theater on opening weekend.  

There's not much else to tell.  I remember liking it well enough at the time, felt it was funnier than I expected, and went on with my life.  Sure, I've seen it a number of times over the years since then - enough so I couldn't even roughly guess.  And, it's one of those movies I'll watch just parts of as I flip channels.

But the thing is - and I don't know if I'm going out a limb saying this - Scrooged is a very, very good movie.  It is.  I don't mean that it's a really funny movie, though it is that.  Stepbrothers makes me laugh like a loon, but it's not necessarily a *good* movie although it succeeds at its goals.  But I tend to think of Scrooged less as a lightweight holiday comedy (see: Christmas with the Kranks.  Or, do not.), and more of a solid entry in the movies that earn a place in the Christmas movie pantheon.  

And, it just might be the best to-film adaptation of A Christmas Carol.  

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Marvel Yule Log Videos For Your Holiday Cheer (of Justice)

Well, this is fun! and Merry!

Steve's Apartment (wide angle):


Steve's Apartment (closer in - and wisely with a portrait of his best girl there on the table):


Marvel has produced several of these, including Iron Man, Thor, Groot and more!

Thor
Groot/ Guardians
Iron Man


Your Signal Watch Christmas Playlist 2016


Christmas is a holiday that impacts all the senses.  Twinkling lights, the smell of wassail, the chill of the air against the skin, the taste of peppermint.  Sleigh bells, of course.  And, man, the music.

I have my Christmas favorites.  White Christmas, Rudolph, and a surprising number of non-secular songs I sang growing up Lutheran.  If you've never been to candlelight service on Christmas Eve to sing Silent Night, you're missing out on a great, not-often-mentioned holiday tradition.

But this isn't a list of my favorite Christmas songs.  If it were just a list, it'd be quite long, and kind of pointless.  A playlist needs to be curated.  It's the heir to the mixtape.  Song content and order need to work together.  It can't just be your holiday tunes on shuffle (although serendipity can create some amazing combinations).

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Christmas Watch: The Shop Around the Corner (1940)


No lie, Jimmy Stewart is one of my favorite actors of all time.  I've thought the guy was brilliant since high school when I caught Harvey on VHS.  The Shop Around the Corner (1940) is a bit of pre-war brilliance on Stewart's part, working from a pretty great script under a renowned director and with an excellent cast working as a team.

It's true the movie is steeped in social constructs of the early 20th Century, and so may be dated in too many ways for many viewers, but I tend to think the conflicts and humor of the movie transcends those qualities.  It's not a sweeping, amazing movie, but it is a good movie for putting on during the Yuletide Season for you and your sweet woogums.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

RiffTrax Watch: Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964)



Thursday night Jamie and I met up with SimonUK for a Fathom Events screening of Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964).  Way, way back in 2012 I watched the movie on BluRay to review the film for Texas Public Radio, and so I see no real need to write the film up again.  I'm actually weirdly proud of that review and I don't have much to add.

The screening was actually a RiffTrax performance from 2013, rebroadcast as part of a double-bill with a whole bunch of holiday shorts - originally broadcast in 2009.   And as much as I like RiffTrax at home, it can be pretty fun in a theater with lots of other folks, too.


Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Checking in - and Happy Thanksgiving (if I'm not back online before then)



It's been a busy week for us here at League HQ.  I had two separate trips out of town between Monday and Sunday, to Waco and then Ft. Worth.  In my 1.5 days in the office, I was catching up and adjusting to both a new office and a standing desk (we're gonna have to work on the standing desk arrangement.  Complications have arisen from the fact I'm about 6'5" and this desk thinks that's too tall for a reasonable desk jockey.

I even went into work today for about three hours even though I'd asked for Monday - Wednesday off - but I didn't want to not show my face around the office for that long.

Today Dug and K arrived at our house for the Thanksgiving holiday, so I expect to be in low content mode while I pay attention to our house guests.

I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving.  I am not sure I'll be online or posting, but I also didn't want you to think I'd fallen off the face of the Earth.


Sunday, July 3, 2016

A Signal Watch Fourth of July



Ann Miller, inspiring patriotism


And now, Lou Reed goes full on patriotic...  You may listen as you read.




Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Happy Star Wars Day!



Oh, what a difference a year makes.

Last Star Wars Day, I kind of shrugged.  16 years or so of ambivalence regarding Star Wars had drained me of any enthusiasm for the movies.  At most, I think, I mustered a picture of Princess Leia.

On Monday, I hung a print of the above X-Wing image in my office at work.  That's how I roll.

But, hey, The Force Awakens brought me back in to the Star Wars fold, something I, frankly, thought impossible.  I figured that even if I liked it, it'd still feel like something of an echo of something else I used to like.  But, instead, I'm as excited about Star Wars now as I was in college.

So, here's to a Star Wars day I can feel is mine, too!  And to celebrate, here's some artwork promoting the movie!  And, heck, here's to Rogue One, coming soon!