Friday, July 20, 2012

My Movie Rubric

So I have been doing some thinking about my movie reviews on my other blog.  I have decided they need a rubric, a standard that they can all be measured on.  I will have different areas of evaluation, and a 5 will be given for perfect, 1 for very poor.  I will then average the scores for a overall score.  This post will be version 1.0.

     5-Really good acting from the whole cast.
     4-Mostly good acting from the whole cast.
     3-Really good acting from the main cast.
     2-Mostly good acting from the main cast.
     1-Poor acting from main cast.

     5-Great camera angles.  Great background scenery.  Top notch special effects. Great lighting.  Adds to the story, or does not distract from story (whichever in needed).
     4-Good camera angles.  Good background scenery.  Good special effects.  Good lighting.  Adds very little to the story, or does not distract a little from the story.
     3-Fair camera angles.  Fair background scenery. Fair special effects. Fair lighting.
     2-Poor camera angles.  Poor background set.  Poor special effects.  Poor lighting. Takes away from the story.
     1-Very poor camera shots. Very poor set. Very poor special effects. Very poor lighting.  Very distracting.

     5-Plot moves nicely.  No lulls.  Not predictable.  Entertaining.  Good mix of "action" and dialog."  Has a deeper meaning in the plot.
     4-Moves well.  No large lulls.  Fairly unpredictable.  Entertaining.  Fair mix of action and dialog.  Might have a deeper meaning.
     3-Moves fair.  Some lulls.  Fairly predictable.  Entertaining. Fair mix action or dialog.  Pretty shallow.
     2-Slow moving.  Some large lulls.  Predictable.  Un-entertaining.  Mostly dialog or action.  Shallow
     1-Dreadfully slow.  Lots of lulls.  "I saw that coming." Boring.  All dialog, or all action.  Very shallow.

For not that is it.  I most likely will release new versions the more I think about it.  At the bottom I will always say what version I used.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


I have been wanting to share my thoughts about time travel.  I know that it is, as it stands now, impossible.  I am going to ignore that fact.  I do not even want to go near the science and math required to understand why that is so.

What I want to share with you is how I think time travel effects time; history, future, present, and such. I have included some images, (that I have drawn myself, so be kind) that should help you understand my ideas.  I recognize there are probably flaws in my logic.  Should you find any, post a comment, and then I will think on it, and get back to you.

First we need to understand how time works.  If there has been no time travel,  it is constant, and never ending in either direction.

Think of an endless line of ants.  (Weather or not ants really walk in a line I do not know, but lets pretend.)  Now, unfortunately, this line needs a "lead" ant to make sense, but try to remember, really there is no beginning.

In this idea of ants, the "lead" ant chooses to go somewhere, and all the other ants follow blindly.  If the lead ant runs into an obstacle, the other ants will also run into that obstacle.  The lead ant makes his choice; around, over, under, and the like.  The other ants follow.

Got it? Good.  Now lets turn every ant into a moment in time.  This moment is as small a measure of time imaginable.  In the present moment, "we" (everyone, everything, everywhere) is doing the exact same thing that was done by the "we" that is one moment in front of us.  And the "we" a moment behind us will do exactly what "we" have done this moment.

So IF we could time travel, and just observe, not interfere (ignore the fact that even looking interferes) we would see exactly the same thing happen in every moment we look upon.  Just like every ant that has to go around that rock, every moment has to pass through, or already has passed through, your birth, and your death.   There are infinite moments  in both directions and the exact same things will happen for each moment, no matter how far away they are on this line.

For instance, take ant A.  He has already went around that rock.  B just finished going around the rock.  C is half way done with the rock.  D is just starting to go around the rock.  And E has yet to even see the rock, but will go around it eventually.

Now lets look at moments.  A is long after your death.  B is your death.  C is your mid-life crisis. D is your birth.  And E is long before your birth.  A has been in every position on this line, and E will go through all those positions as well.

I hope you got that, because now we are moving on.  Lets look at what time travel does to this model.  Lets say the ants are walking on a stick.

Some one comes along and moves one end of the stick.  The ant just on the end of that stick is going to be the new "lead" ant for all the ants behind him. There is no way for him to know how to get back to where he should be, so he starts his own line of ant and leads them forever.

Lets turn the ants back into moments.  The end of the stick represents a time traveler, and either on purpose, or by accident, he changed something.  The time traveler did so during the first moment when it was at the tip of the stick.  The first 7 moments are the same, unchanged.  The moments on the stick and the ones behind are also unchanged, but have different futures in store for them.  The new "lead" is now in new territory.  Some, but not all, the events happening in that moments are new, never before experienced events.

Now, the stick could be moved back to where is was, and all but the two will be back to "normal."  But for those moments not in the line, things will always be different.  Time has been changed for those moments.  Time can be changed at any moment, resulting in altered realities.  Time can be altered in an already altered timeline. The result would be many different timelines, all chopped up.  And if you could draw them like I have here.  Then squish them back to one line, there would be no gaps, and no overlap.  It would be one continuous line.

This is a very simple model. Perhaps I will expand on it later in another post. Obviously there are lots of things that could come up to change how this works.  If you have any questions about how this model works, or if you find holes in it, let me know, I would like nothing more than to perfect this model about time.

Friday, April 20, 2012


The other day, I had a wonderful conversation with one of my friends about love.  About how much I hated that word.

That's right, I said I hated the very word that describes the very opposite of hate.  Now to be clear, I did not mean the idea of love.  Not even that it is overused, and underused at the same time. (Although, these are things to think about when you say it, or when you don't say it.)

Love, to me, during this conversation with a friend, was defined as: a feeling of adoration, toward another individual that could never be topped.  Right? When you say you love someone, the idea is that there is not a single person that you care for more, and there never will be.  You think wonderfully of them unconditionally.

I have dated some people.  There were points in most of them I would have said the 3 words.  "I Love You."  But I could not, would not, because my life had taught me that I will always find something better than what I have.

For instance, when I was an elementary school-er I discovered butterscotch pie. I loved it, and did not think that there was anything better.  A few years ago I found strawberry pie, even better.  When I was eight I loved my mom.  Then I found Kristin, my first crush.  Then I had my first kiss, with a different girl.  Each was a different definition of love.

 Each one even more meaningful.  So with experiences that teach me there is always something better.  Add in an idea that the word love was reserved for that someone that was greater that all others.  How do I know when I have reached that said peak, when I find that someone I "love"?  I could not and would not use that word to describe my feelings, because if you say that word, and you don't mean it, you are a really bad person.  Or so I thought.  Hopefully I was not alone in this definition.

So I am talking to my friend, I describe the above. (With more errors, and over Facebook chat, so it was shorter)  And my friend then describes their feeling on what I had told them.

Here is what I got out of it.  As long as you REALLY mean it when you say it, you can come back in X many years, and say something to the effect, "I do not love you like I used to."  And that's OK.   If that is how it works, it makes the word so much more practical. I could have said it to the first kiss, and not have been wrong, or a bad person.  I could have said it because I meant it. But that does not lock me in at that choice, and I could still love someone some other time.

Now I am not advocating to just overuse the word.  But perhaps I can at some point commit to using it, because the definition now lets me change what love feels like.  I don't have to KNOW shes the one, and as long as at that time I BELIEVE shes the one,then I may say those words.  "I Love You."

Caution still needs to be exercised, you don't want to say it unless you think you really mean it.  And you should never repeat it to someone if you are "just returning the favor."

I found this new definition to be liberating, because now when  I choose to use the word, I will know that I mean it and that I am not lying, but if something were to change or if I was wrong, I can be free of that commitment, without thinking that I am a bad person because I was wrong, or because I intentionally lead the person along.

I am sure that this does not account for every situation, I would guess that there are many holes in this logic,  and I understand that this may make absolutely no sense to you.  I also recognize that this MAY NOT be the "common " definition.  I just wanted to share and maybe get some feedback.  I would love it if you posted a comment, shared with me your thoughts, and maybe we could get a good conversation going.  Education is key, and without communication, there can be no education.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sucks To Suck

That's right.  When you are bad at something, it sucks.

Well I suck.

It has been just about 2 months since my last post.  

Nice job me.

You see, I go through these "fads."  I find something new and I binge on it, a lot.  For awhile it was blogging, before that it was Dragon Age.  For awhile it was Euchre.  Now it has been League of Legends.  And during said fads, the old fads are forgotten.  Well, they are not totaly forgotten.  I think about them occasionally.  And so tonight I wanted to stop just thinking about, and do.

Something else I suck at, having a relationship.  Well, not so much HAVING a relationship.  More like GETTING a relationship.  I think about being single a lot.  And apparently, you should not do that.  because "when you stop looking is when you find it."  What? So you want me to stop looking for something I really want?

Oh, well if that's all I need to do, what the hell I am I doing.  *Poof.*  I am no longer looking.

Huh? Telling someone to stop looking for something they really want makes no sense.  Now I don't smoke, but I am POSITIVE that if I would tell a smoker, "Ok, mister smoker, the next time you want a smoke, just stop wanting one, then you will get one, it's that easy!"   They would hit me.  The logic is not there.

Now I bet you are thinking, "OK, Nick, bad example, smokers are addicted to smoking, they can't stop thinking about it."

THAT'S THE POINT!  I really want a relationship, how in the hell do you expect me to stop thinking about something I want.  They really want a smoke, I really ant a relationship.

I hope I am not the only one who thinks this way of thinking is flawed.  As for what I try to do to solve my issue is this...
     I always try to feel good about myself, I believe that I am quite a catch.  Now I don't just act like an ass to everyone.  Just mentally I try to feel good about myself.
     I keep trying to get dates, I don't stop trying.  If I would quit trying, I would never get one (Contrary to what people tell me, but I can not see the logic, as discussed earlier.)
    Everyone has something to offer. I view every female as a potential date with one exception. I must find them physically attractive.  (Not necessarily what society says is attractive, but what I think is attractive, and what i find attractive has a very wide range of acceptance.)  I have been called shallow before, but that is because they do not understand how vast my view of attractiveness is. (A sub-point, any one that calls you shallow for not wanting to date someone you find ugly, is just an idiot.  You need to think the other person is attractive, just make sure there are other things that determine the date-ablity of someone.)
     I am a nice guy.  I do my best to be friendly, thoughtful, and the like.
     None of that seems wrong to me, and defiantly not a reason I should be single.  So lastly I recognize, that my being single is not ALL my fault, some of it I am sure can be related to me, but surely not all.

I really have no authority to give advice on the matter, being single and all, but I do feel like I am on the right track.  So feel free to take my suggestions with as big or small a grain of salt that you would like.

But still, it sucks to suck....

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Issue with Food on Campus

I attend College.

The food on campus ranges from "meh" to great.  But that's not the issue.

It is a buffet style cafeteria, also not the issue.

On weekdays we are served 3 meals a day, and on the weekends we are served 2 meals a day.  Still not an issue.

We are given meal plans, of which we pay for at the beginning of the year.  This is the start of the issue.  There are 2 meal plans to pick from,  nineteen meals a week, or ten meals a week.  Nineteen gives you every meal possible, and ten leaves you, well, nine short of all meals possible. Each meal plan comes with extra money, called flex dollers, which are either used, or lost at the end of the semester.  Here is where I think the issue starts.

Say I have the ten meal plan.  One week I use 8 meals, and the next I want to use 11?  As a freshman, the common mistake is to think that they roll over.  You miss a meal, you have an extra to use some other time.  Not the case.  You only eat 9 of your 10 meals, sorry, it is gone, can not get it back.  But we paid for our meals, so do we get refunded for unused meals? No.

So here is how I see it.  We have to buy a meal plan if we live on campus.  We pay them up front.  And we either use or lose what we paid for.  The service does not have to be good.  The food does not have to be good.  In fact, this business makes the most amount of money, if no one eats there.  They are paid upfront, if no one comes to eat, no cost on food.  If no one comes to eat, sent workers home early.  So for them, there is no incentive to provide a good service.  None.  They have their money, why would they want anyone to come eat?  I do not see why they would care, except for the fact that they might want to keep the contract with the school.

And this ladies and gentlemen is what I call a racket, and a fairly good one.  Don't get me wrong, they provide a decent service, but they do not have the same incentives as a normal establishment to provide an extraordinary service.  I do not have a good solution, to pay the cost of eating there per visit would be out of my ability to pay.  So this is here as more of an education, or advice to keep an eye out for things that seem unfair, even if you do not want it to change, because the change might be worse that what you already have. There is no need to be ignorant or naive, be aware of your surroundings, and remember what "they" say, "Knowledge is Power."

Thursday, January 19, 2012


I am taking a government class this semester.  It is not my first, but so far it has been the best.  We started the class by talking about the constitution, and what James Madison REALLY had in mind when he wrote it.

Before I go on, a few things you need to know.  I am a liberal.  I think big government is good.  Its job is to keep its people happy and safe.  Or so I thought.

Come to find out, the Constitution is VERY limited.  There are only a very few list of powers actually given to Federal Government.  That is in fact, the Constitution is so limited, that in my opinion, it has over stepped its bounds, more than a few times.  The Constitution is being used, because of its shortness, and vagueness, to give the Federal government more and more power, that it wasn't given.  Which, for the most part, I am okay with.  I think a lot of the things it has done has bettered our society.  Civil Rights, Women's Suffrage, for example.

A power that I think is most important are the "Police Powers."  The powers to keep people safe and healthy and happy and such.  But it says, right in the Constitution that that power is specifically given to the states, not the nation government.  Now, I am not a Government, or law, or political science major, so to get the specifics on how and why government has gotten so big you will have to do your own learning.

But something that I am having issues with is this: I think the national government SHOULD have the "Police Powers."  I think it should have the power to keep us safe and happy and such.  But the issue is it can't.  It just dose not have the power.  So do I switch my entire view of the role of the national government? I do not think I can do that.  How about trying to change the Constitution?  That is almost impossible, it took many people working very hard to get the changes we have now,  so that's not a viable option.

For instance, I think we should have a national Health Care System.  It is for the betterment of our citizens, and lifestyle.  But the National Government can't do that, they do not have the power.  Unless, you can find, some little stupid backwater way to relate the issue to commerce, or something else in which the national government CAN regulate.  Again, I am not majoring in this, do you own research.

So I find myself caught between what I BELIEVE, and what the government actually has the RIGHT to do. I am unsure of where to go from here.  My beliefs are not on solid ground, which is good I suppose. College is said to "challenge you" and "make you think critically about things."  Hopefully as this class progresses, I can solidify my thoughts on the matter, and once again be firm in my ideas of what a government should be, and what it should do.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Mentat: Origins

I have another blog. I enjoyed writing it so much, I wanted to start another one. Something not quite so focused. Someplace where I can share my ideas, and thoughts.

(To the six of you who read my OTHER blog, do not fear, it is not dead, just sleeping, school is keeping busy, or broke (your choice), so no new movies or books for me, for now, hopefully soon.)

To those of you not knowledgeable of "Dune," get educated. It is where my title came from. A definition, from Wikipedia....

"A Mentat is a profession or discipline in Frank Herbert's fictional Dune universe. Mentats are humans trained to mimic computers: human minds developed to staggering heights of cognitive and analytical ability."

I'm not saying I am super duper smart. I AM saying that I tend to view things differently than most, and even wrongly sometimes. Posts will be mostly unrelated, irregular, and ranging in seriousness. I will share what I think is important, and not share what I think is lame.

That is all.
or more accurately...
Until next time.