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Wednesday, 30 July 2008
Movie Review 122: Hell Boy 2
Ron Perlman is terrific as Hell Boy and it's hard not to like this movie.
Basically, this film is just a comic book brought to life for the big screen. There's more fights, more action and more interesting characters than you can shake a stick at.
The movie suffers from an inferior bad guy that looks like he came out of a Bruce Lee movie. He fights well, but he's humourless and bland.
Hell Boy continues to develop into a loving family man and that's good, but his fish buddy should spend more time in the tank rather than on land.
The movie was well received by the critics at Rottentomatoes, but I'd have a tough time watching it twice and I'm a fan. Two and half stars.

Posted by qualteam at 9:48 PM EDT
Sunday, 27 July 2008
Changing The World With One Micro Loan After Another

Kiva  (a charity) was launched in the fall of 2005 by Matt and Jessica Flannery of San Francisco, after Jessica heard about Dr. Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank.

Kiva has made more than $35 million in loans from about 311,000 lenders to more than 50,000 entrepreneurs in 43 countries. It has a 98.13 per cent repayment rate. All the donations to Kiva go directly to the entrepreneurs. The lenders can select the small business owners themselves and follow their progress. 

For instance, loans to women in Guatemala helped them to buy sewing machines to make clothes to sell in their community.

There are many different organizations and charities that support Kiva. You could start a group at your job or school and organize potluck dinners, bikerides and other events to help them.

This is a hand up and not a handout.


MusicPlaylist

Posted by qualteam at 11:59 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 27 July 2008 12:25 PM EDT
Thursday, 24 July 2008
Top Ten Ways For Kids To Have Fun And Learn On The Internet
  1. Get connected to other kids and groups on Facebook. This is a great interactive website that allows teens and preteems of common interests to meet in cyberspace.
  2. Find all kinds of fun stuff at kids.com. Safe chat rooms, lots of games, lots of new friends.
  3. Discover the different types of games that you can play on the internet.
  4. Believe it or not, casino games (like Poker) can be played with play money and you don't have to download them to your computer.
  5. Start a blog of your favourite videos and songs on "YouTube". This website has just about every video and song ever made.
  6. If you want to find out more about any subject or person, do a "Google Alert" with your e-mail address. The search engine Google does all the work and you get the results in your inbox.
  7. Start building a blog (Weblog and Diary) on Facebook or some other website. You can upload your pictures to it and even create a slideshow through a free service at www.photobucket.com.
  8. By using search engines like google or MSN, you can find out more about advances in science like "Green Technology" and "Electric Cars".
  9. When you google something like "Classic Dolls", you not only find websites that write about classic dolls, but you can find pictures of classic dolls by clicking on "images" above the Google Search Box.
  10. Always use the internet to learn more about human/plant/mineral/animal life and always use the internet to find material that makes people laugh like the Ray Steven's video below: "Santa Claus Is Watching You". 

I'd like to thank Melanie Sparkes (my niece) for helping me think about great stuff for kids on the internet. Hopefully, this blog entry will help any teen or preteen who's starting out on "The World Wide Web".


Posted by qualteam at 6:02 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, 24 July 2008 6:45 PM EDT
Wednesday, 23 July 2008
Top Ten T-Shirt Sayings

Throughout the years, people have communicated with funny stuff on T shirts. Here are some of my favourites.

  1. I Got a Rock in my Head and Roll in my Mouth. Oh Ya.....Rock and Roll.
  2. Moe (Picture of Three Stooges' Moe) Knows Hockey.
  3. When God Created Man, She Was Only Kidding.
  4. FU: Flamingo University
  5. 69 The Breakfast of Champions
  6. I Killed a Six Pack Just to See It Die
  7. Filthy Stinking Rich... Well, Two Out of Three Ain't Bad
  8. I Used Up All My Sick Days... So I Called In Dead
  9. Be Nice to Your Children... They'll Pick Your Nursing Home
  10. I Am the Person Your Parents Warned You About

If you want to find more interesting T-shirt sayings, check out this page.

The person who sings the song below created some of TV's most popular game shows.


MusicPlaylist

Posted by qualteam at 11:45 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 23 July 2008 12:10 PM EDT
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Turning The U.S.Housing Market Around

For anyone buying or selling a house in the United States, "Flip This House" should be required viewing. In today's marketplace, the value of a house  doesn't appreciate naturally, it happens with blood, sweat and a fair amount of cash.

Armando Montelongo is the star of the show and he handles his clients with tough love, a tight budget and gritty determination.

The episode that I saw yesterday, really left an impression in my mind. This couple bought a crummy house for $92,000.This was $50,000 more than it was worth. It was dirty, the walls were cracked, it was rat infested, the plumbing didn't work, a room was off center, etc. etc.

Armando had to kick of the butt of the husband to get the garage cleaned up and get other work done on time.

It wasn't an easy job and Armando swore a lot which resulted in more money for the couple's renovations.

At first, the couple wanted to sell the house for the original cash value, but after two weeks of all out renovating, they developed "Pride Of Ownership" and decided to keep it.

The house was independently appraised for $125,000 which was  better than expected.

There's no easy journey to a value added product like a restored house. It requires a vision by the owners and mortgage lenders to make it happen.


 


 


Posted by qualteam at 10:58 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 20 July 2008 11:08 PM EDT
Saturday, 19 July 2008
Get Energized With Momma Mia
Mood:  caffeinated

It's been a tough year economically for the U.S. and the world, rising food, commodities and oil prices have taken their toll. Added to the above are the continuing subprime crisis/credit crunch and concerns over Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan.

Fortunately, the feel good movie of the year has arrived in "Momma Mia". I saw stage productions of Momma twice in Toronto and enjoyed both productions immensely. Louise Pitre as "Donna" was a standout in Toronto and New York.

From the reviews, I've read, Meryl Streep did a fine job in the lead role. Apparently, a fan letter to the New York cast in 2001 helped her to get the main part.

The Abba songs tell the stories how Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Agnetha Fältskog met, fell in love, married and divorced  Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson.

All the excitement and adventure of discovering new relationships are there in the music and the story line.

"Grease" of the 20th century has now been replaced by "Greece" in the 21st century.


Posted by qualteam at 9:50 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 19 July 2008 11:15 AM EDT
Wednesday, 16 July 2008
The Fun Side Of The Credit Crunch

  1. Buy U.S. Subprime Beef. It's cheaper than you think.
  2. Try ABCP Toilet Paper. It's guaranteed by The Federal Reserve.
  3. Many U.S. mortgage officers are now in Canada working for The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. Their job is to shred sensitive documents.
  4. The biggest garage sale in U.S. history is starting now in used bank stocks and foreclosed houses.
  5. Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae sound like hillbilly loan officers from "The Dukes of Hazzard".  Is Boss Hogg, their manager?
  6. Zimbabwe may run out of paper to print more money, but the Fed, definitely, will not.
  7. Your home may be worth...less than you think.
  8. "When you (i.e. loan manager) reset my mortgage, I'll reset your teeth."
  9. The Canadian "Trailer Park Boys" started the subprime crisis.
  10. Be thankful that financials are less than 5% of the Dow.

 


Posted by qualteam at 10:12 PM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 19 July 2008 1:59 PM EDT
Saturday, 12 July 2008
Oprah, Fundamentalism And New Age Christianity

Christian fundamentalism has never escaped the box of the Council of Nicaea in the 4th century.

The bishops of this council were regarded like prophets of the New and Old Testament by fundamentalists. They took the inner spiritual path of Christ and dogmatized it into a man-made religious insurance policy for getting to Heaven.

The battle of the "Gospel Within" (i.e. The Gnostics) and "Gospel Without" (i.e. The Roman Church) reached a turning point at Nicaea. The emperor, Constantine, threw his support behind the Catholic Establishment. The Gnostics were branded as heretics going to Hell and the followers of the Roman bishops were blessed and going to Heaven.

Fundamentalists have always been very critical of those that don't share their literal and dogmatic views of scripture. This is seen in their condemntion of Christian sects like the Mormons or the Jehovah Witnesses.

This criticism even extended to Oprah Winfrey who discussed some of her religious views on her TV show. They mocked her and said she started her own religion, "The Church Of Oprah".

My own particular fixation with Christianity was the whereabouts and condition of the early church from 100 AD to the present/2008.

Christians have "The Mind of Christ" and we're connected to each other like a grapevine. This should give us access to the memories and experiences of millions of Christians who went before.

I have written many blogs on my visions of the Christian Brotherhood as it now exists. Please check the entries on the right panel.

I believe we've made first contact with "The Federation Of Jesus Christ". All it took was "One Moment In Time".


Posted by qualteam at 11:47 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 12 July 2008 2:27 PM EDT
Thursday, 10 July 2008
No Easy Money On The Worlds' Stock Markets These Days

But isn't it great to hear the sound of speculators losing billions of dollars on market volatility.

Has oil topped out? Have financials bottomed out? Has stagflation set in? On and on, investors ask economists and financial gurus these questions.  The experts look into their "crystal balls" and come up with the usual long or short winded explanations of what is happening and what is going to happen.

This fortunetelling makes good press releases, but it really doesn't tell anyone whether we're going to hell or making a recovery.

Whether you're bull or a bear depends on the mood you're in.

What is reported in the media are fixations over commodities, energy futures and financial incompetence.

Personally, I think we've reached the end of an age (i.e. The 20th Century Oil Based Economy). The 21st century will be based on alternate energy sources like solar power.

Some companies are getting into the new industrial age in a big way like General Electric and Toyota while some are being left behind like Ford and ExxonMobile.

If I had the money to invest in the stock market, I would definitely go green with companies like "Nanosolar", "Suntech" and others.

Stock markets always look into the future and for "the next big thing."

Speculators and investors are clinging to what they have or trying to get back what they've lost.

The old stock market game is over and the new one has begun.


Posted by qualteam at 1:54 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, 10 July 2008 2:53 PM EDT
Monday, 7 July 2008
I Love Gambing But..

I'm on a limited buget these days because I'm trying to pay off the mortgage on my house.

I orginally started off playing backgammon for money many years ago. I won more than I lost but gradually my buddies moved away and my gambling interests turned to blackjack, craps and sports gambling. I won a little bit at blackjack and craps, but not sports betting.

Presently, I play "Hold "Em Poker" for free at Poker Stars. I've amassed $35000 in play money over the last month. When I was playing for real money, I made $10 to $15 dollars playing in nickle and dime tournaments.

Most of the time, I play within a designated limit like $50 in any gambling game.

I'd love to buy some good green stocks and see them double in price, but right now, my extra cash is spoken for. I'm not going to go in debt to place a bet on some trendy energy or tech stock on the TSX,  the Dow or anywhere else.

My number one investment is my house and that takes precedent over "a gambler's rush on a big bet".


Posted by qualteam at 10:54 PM EDT

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