Where should I go on vacation?

I’ve planned a few vacations for myself this year, but kept cancelling them for one reason or another.  Originally I was going to go out to vegas for the World Series of Poker.  Then I was going to fly down to Florida and swing by New Orleans and Hotlanta. Now I have a tentative plan involving a bunch of NFL games in October in California.  The only problem is that I was out in Cali two years ago so do I really want to go back there so soon?

I was thinking of comming up with yet another plan for my 2015 self mancation when I saw uproxx.com had an article on the best ways to get cheap flights. I am a fan of things that are cheap (*wink* ladies.. grrroooowwwllll) so I took a look to see if I could get some ideas.  The one thing that stood out to me was a website called http://www.secretflying.com/ which judging by the name is like the fight club of online airline discount aggregate websites.

I thought I would go through some of the deals that they have to get an idea of some alternatives to my current west coast travel plans.  First, lets go over where I have already gone, and where I haven’t but would like to go.  In the US I have been to Most of the east coast and some Midwest cities, going as far out as Kansas City.  I’ve been to some of the west coast including San Fran, LA, Vegas, Reno, and not Phoenix part of Arizona.  I haven’t been to Boston, New Orleans, Florida, Texas.  It should also be noted that I haven’t been to Vegas or A.C in several years.

Internationally I have been to Toronto, Belgium, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, and France. All of that was almost 20 years ago so visiting any of those places again would still be a viable option. Specifically the places I would like to go that I haven’t been to before over seas would be Italy, England, Scandanavian Countries, and maybe some more far flung places like Australia, New Zeland, Japan, or anywhere else where they only kind of dislike Americans and don’t full time hate us.

There are a lot of deals on the website so I thought I would list some of them to walk through my pros and cons of each destination.

Thailand
Fly from New York to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, returning from Bangkok, Thailand back to New York for only $553 with United and ANA.

Pros: Much more exotic than any trip I’ve ever taken before

Cons: Not sure how I feel about traveling alone in a place that far removed from America and English, especially since to make the deal work, I would have to travel between Vietnam and Bangkok.

Denmark-Sweden

Pros: Great Price and I get to maybe see some of my ancestors from the side of my family that I never met and don’t actually care about.

Cons: The deal is dependent on me being in L.A, so flying from the 7171 to LAX is going to jack up the price.

Guadeloupe

Pros: Great price and a tropical paradise maybe.

Cons: Had no idea that Guadeloupe was anything other than a persons name. Don’t really anticipate taking advantage of a place with a beach since I am not in swim suit shape.

Whore Island

Pros: Name says it all.

Cons: Might not be a real place, isn’t listed on the secretflying website, and this joke is basically stolen from the TV show Archer.

Peru

Pros: More Exotic than just driving around the US. Flight conveniently leaves from NYC.

Cons: Do they hate Americans?  I don’t want to get involved in some weird shit like in that movie Hostel.

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Did something for the first time ever; “Unfriended” movie review

Last night I did something that I have never done before. No, not “touch a woman”. I’ve done that before, you ass hole reader of my blog.  For the first time ever in my life, I walked out of a movie before it was over. I can only remember two other instances where I thought about walking out of a movie and in both instances I was glad I didn’t.

The first was the Johnny Knoxsville movie “The Ringer”.  It was really awful for the first half hour or so, but then it got good.  Not an amazing or great movie, but it at least wasn’t so bad that I wanted to leave.

The second movie, and I can’t believe this in hinesigth, was the movie “Drive” starring Ryan Gossling. The movies opening scene was pretty good, but then it hit such a lull where none of the characters were even talking.  In fact they just kind of stared and awkwardly grinned at each other.  It was painful the first time I saw it and I was kind of affraid that it was going to be like that for the rest of the movie.  Drive turned out to be one of the best movies of the year that should have gotten way more box office love.  What did in that movie was that they marketed it like it was a spin off of the Fast and Furious franchise and not like a sleek 80s noir tough guy heart of gold movie that it really was.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pe6eOqheva8

So those were two instances where I was glad I toughed it out. Last night however I really should have tapped out way earlier than I did.  I saw the movie “Unfriended” and I wasn’t the only one who walked out of the movie.  In fact 100% of the theater walked out. Granted there was only 6 people in the theater, but 100% is still 100%.  In fact even 1% or .01% is probably too high of a number.

Of the six people there, two of us were by our selves, and the other four were a group of teenage or early 20 something girls.  The first guy who left was a dude similar to me from what I could tell, sad, homely, nothing to do, loves cheap movie theater popcorn.  He took off after about 10 minutes.  The pack of girls left about 40 minutes into the film.  I was going to leave at that moment too, but when they got up to leave I decided to stay since I thought it would have been weird to leave at the same time.  I stayed another 10 minutes and the bounced.

So why did I leave? Well in short, the entire movie takes place on a computer screen.

Just let that sink in for a moment.

The entire movie is based around you as the audience having the POV of the main protagonist as she types on the computer screen.  And not even really her POV since you never see anything other than the computer screen.  To be more accurate it is more like the movie is a Camtasia screen recording of a teenage girls apple computer for 83 minutes.

Before I start bitching about why I felt I had to leave the theater before the end of the movie, let me give some caveats in defense of the movie.  First of all, I thought this was just a standard fair horror movie with cyber bullying as a plot point and a back drop.  I had no idea the movie was entirely online if you will.  Instead of going in with an open mind about the format of the movie and maybe being intrigued by the unique structure, I instead became really disappointed when I started to realize that all the computer screen stuff in the first 10 minutes of the movie wasn’t just a set up for a regularly filmed final 73 minutes of the movie.

Another issue I had with the movie, that isn’t actually the movies fault, is that I didn’t have my glasses.  So when there was a lot of typing in instant messenger and facebook in those first 10 minutes, I tried to squint to make out the words, and then quickly gave up thinking that the rest of the movie will provide enough context clues that I’m probably not missing anything major.  Once I realized that a good portion of the ongoing movie was going to be played out in a chat window, I got up and moved much closer to the screen.

A third problem I had with the movie that might not be fair to the movie is that it featured a bunch of very punchable teenagers. I know most teenagers in movies aren’t really that similar to real teenagers since it makes them more appealing to wider audience.  Having these characters actually act like annoying, self centered, arrogant, self absorbed, vapid teenagers, made me root against them.  None of them were very likable, and several were down right detestable.

I read online that this movie only cost about a million dollars to make and made 45 million at the box office.  That’s fantastic and good for them.  I kind of feel like shitting on this movie is a fools errand cause I would be criticizing it for trying to be something that it never tried to be.  For example, if I criticized the movie for the cliche way the characters were one by one killed off, including one instance where a guy just randomly shot himself in the face while on webcam, I would also have to try and offer an alternative.  I don’t know if I could do that.

This is a movie that is suppose to take place entirely online, so you either go with the restrictions inherent in this set up, or you do a completely different type of movie that is going to probably end up being just like every other cookie cutter horror movie out there right now.

The real question is given the limitations of the premise of the movie and ignoring the issues I had going into the movie (glasses, didn’t see a preview), could they have done anything to make it better?  Probably.  A lot of little things like make the characters more likable at the beginning. You can still make them awful later on through revealing secrets they don’t want anyone to know. As the movie progressed and you learned these secrets they seemed less like moments of weakness and youthful mistakes, and more like extensions of the shitty people the seemed to be at the beginning of the movie.  I think there could have been a little more video especially early on and less watching people type of skype.  More youtube videos, maybe even fun youtube short clips of something funny or endearing that one or several of the teenagers did that breaks up the monotony and makes them likable.

I really seem to be hammering this likable thing, but I think it is warranted. My main problem with the teenage characters are two fold. One they are teenagers and talk just like teenagers and say stupid teenage things.  Two, I am part of a generation where everything online was ancillary.  It is hard for me to watch something like this and not think “Get the fuck off the computer and do something. Drive to someones house. Un plug the CPU from the wall. Stop acting like pussies.”  Once again, that kind of would ruin the movie if someone did that, similarly to people in standard horror movies not doing half the stupid shit they do.

In summation, I think I was doomed to not like this movie for a whole host of reasons.  I give it 4 out of 10 related “forgetting Sarah Marshall” clips:

Jurassic World II – my pitch

I was listening to the most recent episode of Fatman on Batman last night where they were talking about how great Jurassic World was. Kevin Smith made the point that the last 20 minutes were summer blockbuster perfection, and I have to say I 100% agree.  Not a perfect movie, but the final battle, with the flare, and the final death blow; perfect.

When a movie does something truly well and right, I get this innate feeling of completion.  Almost like a wish has been fulfilled.  (Maybe I should do another blog post about moments in movies where I had this “Yessss!! thank you!!” moment.) I think it works best when it plays into some type of nostalgia or underlying understanding of the source material or backstory.

The fatman on batman episode did make me start to wonder where the sequel can go for a story.  The Jurassic World story made sense as a sequel to the original Jurassic Park only because so much time had passed.  There was no way after the death and destruction of the first park that anyone would finance, build, and then visit a dinosaur park any time soon.  On the other hand after 5 or 10 years have passed, and the memories of the death and destruction have started to fade, someone would see the potential income inherent in these dinosaurs, and would let their hubris lead them to build an even bigger and better park.

I love google image search

So how do you do a sequel to this movie, now that the mistakes of the first park have been revisited, but this time with thousands of bystanders and tons of media coverage added to the mix.  You can’t have another movie with another new theme park cause it is not realistic that in this cinematic world a new park would open so soon, plus doing that limits you to telling the same story that you did last time.

What are the other options?  Well you could have “Return to Jurassic World” where a group of people have to return to Isla Nublar, but that is basically the set up for the 2nd and 3rd Jurassic Park movies. Could it still work? Maybe.  I still think that those two movies were ok movies. Not amazing, but not dog shit like some people seem to remember them.  I especially like this scene from the third movie.

There are a host of reasons they could want to return to the island, but it is difficult to come up with one that lets you root for the people who go back while still putting them in danger.  They could go back to round up and capture all the dinos to use in another park somewhere else, but that doesn’t make me want to root for whoever would be going to do that.  They could go back to the island to try and reopen the park, but that isn’t very compelling to me.  Maybe there are thrill seekers who sneak onto the island, but fuck those people if they do that. Who cares if they die.

Maybe a better option would be having people go to the island for something more humanitarian.  They could be going back to save the dinos because of some mcguffin. Or maybe there is something on the island tangentially related to the dinos like they found the cure for cancer in the cells of the i-Rex. All of that seems a little contrived if you ask me plus it kind of ruins the ending of this most recent movie where you get the impression that the Dinos have retaken the island, or more accurately reclaimed their past and natural position in the world.

Another option is to have the setting be somewhere else.  Maybe one of the dinos makes it to Costa Rica and the movie is about a hunting party trying to find it. That sounds kind of lame now that I typed that out plus it is similar to the last third of Jurassic Park 2 when the T-Rex gets lose in San Diego which I think pretty much everyone thought was dumb as hell.

I think Jurassic World kind of naturally sets up a  movie with a military industrial complex backdrop.  Ingen sells the government or some independent contractor on the usefulness of Dinos as front line soldiers, the ultimate killing machines.  They set up a large complex where they create the dinos and train them for use in the field.  The methods would probably be much more draconian than what Chris Pratt was doing in Jurassic World with his stupid clicker and lame ass respect for nature.

The real question is who, aside from the dinosaurs, do you root for in this movie?  Maybe you could have a dino equivalent of peta try and free the animals, but .. meh.  Also every Jurassic Park movie features a kid or two constantly in mortal danger. So how… shit I just thought of something.

Ok, so you have a facility out in the desert or underground or under the ground of a desert, look, it is some place somewhat remote.  So you have this complex with a mix of scientists, and military people, maybe some civilian contractors.  Well they would also presumably have off site barracks close by, and maybe even living quarters for the families not far away either. So there are kids of the workers at this facility, maybe some of the parents are the sympathetic types like chris pratt was, where they are part of this machine, but are somehow above what is going on.

So the kids don’t know what is going on at the base since it is a huge secret, but they sneak their way on using something they steal from their parents.  Then someone else, maybe through some type of north korean hacking or espionage from a rouge state or competing blackwater type entity sets off a chain reaction where everyone on the base is at danger and the kids are the ones everyone tries to save.

I kind of like this idea actually.

Maybe part of the movie could start with them rounding up… no better yet, have some people (peta, thrill seekers, inGen, whoever) go to the island and try and find the dinosaurs from Jurassic World and find almost all the dinos are missing.  Then you cut to the main story where the secret military base is gearing up with the final stages of testing.  They have bred Raptors as infantry. Maybe a triceratops or ankelsaurus as … I have no idea. Well aside from the raptors and maybe the iRex or other carnivores, what dinos do they need or really want?

Maybe they took a bunch of the non carnivores for research and experimentation purposes.  See if their control methods work on a triceratops first and then once perfected use them on the more valuable Raptors.  Maybe use the treatment and experimentation of the herbivore animals as a way of casting the people running this program as being bad guys worthy of derision.  I guess you could also give the idea of using some of the dinos like a stegosaurus as an alternative to using gas powered vehicles. Like somehow it would be more efficient in certain terrains and would give a better public image in terms of a carbon foot print.  I think that is a reach, but maybe that is how you would layer it.  Have the bad guys give that as the public face for the project and underneath on closer examination you find out about the experimentation and maybe even cross breeding where they try to make even more hybrid animals.

Maybe all of that is too complex and the sequel should have more to do with a theme park again.  Jurassic World II – Wild Water Adventure.

whoever made this image wins photoshop for life in my opionion.

Who will Darth Vader fight

Why the hell is the back of my right hand green.  I was about to type something up about who Darth Vader should fight in the next installment of ScrewAttack’s Death Battle series, and I suddenly noticed the back of my right hand was green in some places.  It’s rubbing off, which is a good thing I am assuming, but I have no idea what around me is green and transferable to skin.  It looks like it is from a green highlighter but none of those exist anywhere near me at this moment.

Weird.

I honestly thought for a moment that if it didn’t wash off, I would have to go to the doctor, and he or she would probably look at the partially green hand and then look at me and say “Look Mr. Johnson, I think we have bigger issues to worry about than just your hand.”  So thank god the green mystery stuff washed off so I can continue to live in blissful ignorance of whatever terrible illness is probably plaguing me.

Ok back to Darth Vader.  Death Battle did a teaser that their next Death Battle would feature Darth Vader taking on a mystery opponent.  I guess there was a way to find out by following them on twitter or by doing something else that I have no intention of doing.  Instead I am going to speculate wildly about who he is going to fight and then later check out their site to see if I was correct with any of my guesses.

DarkHawk – Yes, any time I can throw dark hawk into a blog post, I will.  Look he is mostly black, has shinny armor. Does Outer Space Stuff. No laser sword type weapon but he does do energy blasts.

darkhawk vs darth vader yielded no relevant goolge image search results.

Darth Maul – This one is very unlikely since Death Battles usually pit two similar people that are in separate fictional universes that would never normally have a chance to fight. Usually. There have been exceptions like when the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles had a battle royale, or when Captain America fought Batman despite them having actually fought each other in a DC vs. Marvel cross over a bunch of years back.  Still, I don’t see Darth Maul fighting Vader as being that likely, but yes more likely than him fighting Darkhawk.

Johnny Cash – The man in Black vs. a jedi who is a cyborg in black. ok this one might be the most unrealistic.

Cyborg – Well speaking of black cyborgs… , cyborg from the teen titans and justice league is a black guy who is a cyborg. I don’t see it being that compelling of a match up. Same goes for Deathlock from the Marvel universe

The Black Knight from Monty Python and the Holy Grail – i think we know how this fight would go. Probably end in a draw.

Bender – I am really grasping at straws and unless bender gets some help from the robot devil or the even more evil robot, santa claus, then he would be fucked royaly in this fight. Might be funny though.

Data – While I would root for data pretty hard in this, and he would have the edge in technology and intellegence, he isn’t much of a fighter. Plus he is an android and not an actual cyborg.

Cylon number 6 – Here is another android that wouldn’t fair will against vader, but she does have the hotness advantage.

something something the force is strong something something wanna bang her sooooo bad

Inspector Gadget – ok so this dude is a true cyborg, but he isn’t much of a fighter except when he is accidentally doing stuff… btw, ever read the theory that inspector Gadget is actually Dr. Claw?

The Borg – ok one last cyborg to consider. Well, don’t consider it very long because even if it was locutus of borg, that version of Picard has no moves and is kind of dumb as far as being a tactician.

Voldemort – This is my odds on favorite.  He’s a bad guy.  Like a big bad evil bad guy.  Plus Harry Potter fought Luke Skywalker in a death battle episode so it would kind of make sense.

Dr. Doom – This also makes a lot of sense since it is a bad guy and this time he is in a suit of armor. Ok it isn’t a black suit of armor, and no laser sword to use against a light saber, but still it makes more sense than Johnny Cash.

Batman – Jesus fan boys. When I did a google image search of “darth vader vs.” there were a lot of images of him fighting Batman. Why? Cause he’s the god damn batman.  I still don’t think it makes a lot of sense though.

Oh there are also a lot of fan art of magneto fighting Darth, and I guess I understand how that might work, but I kind of feel like both of them would just instantly kill the other one either with the force that magneto can’t protect against, or magnetos’ magnetism on Darth’s metal parts which he can’t defend against.

So, let me watch the preview clip on Darth Vader and see if it gives a hint as to who he is going to fight.

annnnnnnndddddd

Doom……. meh.  I’m not that excited. Should have been Johnny Cash.

Jurassic World Review

Jurassic World is one of those rare movies that I was very excited to see even though I had very little hope that it was going to be a great movie.  I’m not saying that to try and marginalize the movie like I might with something like Fast and the Furious where I am excited to see it but know that it “is what it is” and is more of a “guilty pleasure.”  Jurassic World doesn’t have limitations based on what type of movie it is, instead it is limited solely by the fact that it is a movie built on a very specific premise that has already been done excellently 20 years ago.

20 years ago Jurassic Park was a movie with amazing cutting edge special effects that focused on a small group, including two children, who are terrorized when business people and scientists underestimated the power of creation and the persistence of nature’s will.  Problems at the park are exasperated by the action of a rouge employee with his own selfish/monetary motivations.

This movie also has amazing special effects, but they don’t seem as unique or special.  There is a whole theme park full of possible victims, but you only really care about 4 or 5 people, two of which are children or teenagers. The business people and scientists remind each other of the failures of the first park but have become jaded and lost vigilance with years of success and once again find them selves ill prepared when they push science to places it probably shouldn’t go. There is a group of rouge employees driven not by safety of the park guests, but instead by selfish/monetary motivations.

All of this is to say, it is hard to improve on something that was just about perfect the first time around.  Yes I just said Jurassic Park was perfect. I will stand by that even if Honest Trailers doesn’t agree.

Actually, I think I am on the same page as Honest Trailers here.  There are better movies obviously, but there are no problems with the movie itself that aren’t internally consistent. Yes maybe it seems kind of lame 22 years later especially after the two sequals were kind of bad, but that is more a perception problem than reality. You could also argue over why the park doesn’t have this or that or did Jeff Goldblum have to play it the way he did, but for a thriller movie featuring a park full of dinosaurs, it is pretty damn good.

Just to be clear, I really liked Jurassic World, but I just think that if Jurassic Park never existed, Jurassic World could have been better since it would be more novel. There most definitely was a ceiling on awesomeness for this movie.

There were a few things that I absolutely loved about this movie.  The first is a small thing but was something I hoped they would address, and that was the one scientist played by BD wong saying that all the dinosaurs are genetically manipulated so that they looked more like what people imagined.  This of course refers to the fact that a lot of Dinos had feathers which you don’t see in the movies.

Another thing that I loved, oh and this is when the spoilers kind of start, is that velociraptors and the T-Rex were kind of good guys in this movie.  You can’t just have these guys be the bad guys for the 3rd or 4th straight movie so introducing a new bad guy dino and making the previous bad guys you come to love the quasi good guys was a great move.  It is kind of like Deadpool.  He was created as a bad guy, and like a lot of bad guys in comics, after a while you liked them as a villain but you want to start rooting for them since you are so familiar with them.

The reasoning behind why they created a new typo of dino was also a really good choice.  When I first heard that they were going to make a new jurassic park movie, I couldn’t figure out a legit way for them to go back to an island full of dinos or to make a new island full of dinos.  The idea to set the movie in a world where they got a fully functioning park up and running for some time with the dangers coming from the creation of a brand new dino is fantastic.

And the final fight scene was also pretty great, with the best part being that the special effects people made the T-rex be the same T-rex that was in the first movie.  In terms of the story it is the same T-Rex that is still king of Isla Nublar. It almost bordered on fan fiction but didn’t go that far.

My only critique was that they didn’t do that good of a job of explaining or foreshadowing the Ingen army that shows up. It isn’t exactly clear why there is an antagonistic atmosphere between them and the regular old park employees. Well maybe another critique would be that the movie really only seemed to care about Bryce Dallas, Chris Pratt, and Bryce’s nephews.  There was barely any lip services paid to the plight of the other guests of the park.  Oh they also never did any kind of water vibration thing. I know it would be kind of played out by this point but part of me is kind of disappointed they couldn’t have worked it in without it feeling forced.

On a scale of 1 to 10 I give Jurassic World 8 sauropod petting zoos.

Big decisions / cross roads of my life

There is a passage in the bible, 1 Corinthians 13:11, that reads  “When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”

I am 35 years old, and I think it is about time I stop reasoning like a child, and start thinking like a man.  That is why after much soul searching I’ve come to a tough and hard fought truth.

I need to go with a plasti dip option and change up the color scheme I was going to use on my 68 Ford Galaxie.  wow. Feels good to get that out there.  It’s like a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. I’m basically a new man now.

I should probably give a quick update on the current status of my car… the shitty 68 ford galaxie, not the shitty 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix. I found a local company that does restorations and partial restorations on older cars like mine.  They can do a back to original restoration, frame up restoration, pimp my rider restoration, or just a “let’s get this thing running and able to barely pass inspection” restorations.  That latter is more what I am looking for.

It’s a pretty sweet operation they run. The labor costs are fantastic, they let you supply parts, and are willing to work with lower monthly budgets. The example work they showed me was pretty fantastic and I think they could get the car turned around and road worthy in just a few months without a lot of cost.

To get ready for them to take over the repair/restoration work on the car, I took a trip up to where it is located currently and took a few pictures. When I last had the car I had spent a good bit of time trying to paint it using the $50 paint job method of rustoleum and mineral spirits mix using a foam roller.  It would have worked well in black but I wasn’t patient enough to do it right, so I tried it in Grey but there really isn’t a high gloss grey rustoleum like there is in blue or black.

sweet sweet ride... hopefully one day at least

sweet sweet ride… hopefully one day at least

none of the stripes or other accents were suppose to be final, just used to give a rough estimate of how it might look.

none of the stripes or other accents were suppose to be final, just used to give a rough estimate of how it might look.

i think it is mandatory to use ford blue when painting the engine... you know... if it is a ford.

i think it is mandatory to use ford blue when painting the engine… you know… if it is a ford.

Another reason I was going to go with this color combination is that it was going to allow me to get away with not re chroming the bumpers and molding.  Whoever had this car last, had painted the entire thing orange, including the bumpers.  I tried to take the paint off of the bumpers carefully, but saw that the chrome was all scratched underneath.  Same with the molding that was still silver, but had bubbles everywhere.

Getting everything re-chromed would be crazy expensive, and I’m not willing to pay that kind of money since this is something I’m going to want to actually drive and isn’t supposed to be a show car. My only issue with this color scheme is that it doesn’t match the interior.

ok, try to imagine it without all the random crap.

ok, try to imagine it without all the random crap.

I literally have no idea what that hunk of metal is for.

I literally have no idea what that hunk of metal is for.

So I have a few options.

  1. Clean up the interior as best I can, patch up the cloth parts of the seat upholstery with a greyish colored maybe suede type material, and ignore the fact that the inside really doesn’t match the exterior.
  2. Re do the interior to really match the outside as I had mocked it up which would cost a lot of money.
  3. Pretend that off green color on the inside is actually light grey.
  4. Rethink the outside color choice so that it incorporates that pale shade of green. and then go with black colors for everything on the inside I have to replace.

I am going to go with option 4 for a few reasons that I am not going to put into a bulleted format.  A big reason I want to go with this option is that the cost of replacing the leater part of the seats would be super high because it also means replacing the upholestry on the doors so that it matches. So I’m pretty much stuck with that color.  I also need to replace or some how fix the dash since it is cracked.  If I get a replacement dash it comes in black for only 85 bucks.  The cost of the floor lining is probably the same if I get it in either black or grey so the only advantage black has is that it might hide more dirt and stains then the grey depending on the shade.  I also think that having a stark difference in color between black and pale green vs. grey and pale green is a better choice.

So now I am thinking of painting the outside of the car using Plasti Dip.  If you aren’t familiar with what plasti dip is, it is basically a cheap painting thing you can read more about by doing a google search.  So here are some examples of what other people have done.

I’m thinking the main color would be something like that above, maybe the midnight betty: https://www.dipyourcar.com/Black-Betty.html

And then the accent colors for the trim and badges could be something like electric lime green :

the one on the right.

Maybe I could just use the satin or matte black on the bumpers and the raised portion of the hood and then use the green on the badges and some trim and maybe pin strip around the raised hood.  Then use a pearl grey on the rest of the car.

Maybe another option is to have someone cheap like Maaco do the main body and then use the plasti dip for the accent pieces.  ughhhhhhh so many choices and so little money.

Speaking of galaxies and sweet paint jobs. I went to the Ford Show convention think in Carlisle this past weekend and took a bunch of pictures:

I think that last car might have been plasti dipped so maybe i should reconsider my plans.

Updated Vacation Plans

Every year I try to plan at least one mancation.  5 or 6 years ago I would try to organize something with a bunch of my friends, but each year it got harder and harder to make everyone’s schedules work and I have found it is just easier to go at it solo.  There is an additional reason it is easier to take a solo mancation; I can do whatever I want.  This wasn’t really a big problem with previous mancations, but there is a fundamental difference between how I and my friends view vacations.

For my friends, a vacation is an opportunity to relax and just do nothing.  Se they are constantly doing something, usually involving family and children and work, so the opportunity to just sit and relax is very appealing. Me on the other hand, my entire life is already based on relaxing.  That’s why when I go on vacation, I like to build it around something specific and try to plan out a bunch of activities.

Usually the activities I try to incorporate into my vacation/mancations is of three varieties.  The first is sporting events. The second is Nerd stuff and the third is Obligatory land marks.  Oh and there is a fourth; food!! If there is a food that the city or region is famous for, I will try and go out of my way to eat it.

Maybe further down I will detail some of my past vacations and how I have been able to hit up all 4 of quadrants of my ideal vacation/mancation, but for now lets discuss what my plans are for this year.

Originally I was going to fly to Vegas in May with T-Mace for the WSOP, but he backed and I didn’t want to go to Vegas by myself for a whole week.  Then I had decided on driving at the end of August from HBG down to the big Easy via Tampa and return back home through Hotlanta and West Virgina.  The plan with that trip was to hit up a bunch of preseason NFL, and regular season College Football and Major League Baseball games.  Well the weeks I wanted to do this won’t really work with work, so I’m going to try option three.

As of now I am planning on Flying to Vegas on a Friday and then driving to San Fran for a Sunday football game and then also a Thursday football game and then drive down to a Whale’s Vagina Chargers game Sunday before driving back to Vegas and flying back home.  Here is the day by day break down that I have laid out in my head:

Friday October 16th: Take flight from BWI 7:30 pm to Vegas. Spend fri night in vegas doing a little gambling and collecting more poker chips for my collection.

Saturday October 17th:  Hit the road for Santa Clara. It’s a long drive so I am planning on breaking it up by taking the more scenic route through Yellowstone and Death Valley.  I will probably take a lot of breath taking photos during this part of the trip.

Sunday October 18th: 49ers host the Baltimore Ravens. The majority of my day will be center around this.  Maybe since I’m driving this time and planning on getting super cheap seats, I could try getting fucking hammered doing some tail gaiting.

Monday October 19th – Wednesday October 21st:  No fucking clue. This is the part where I try to find something nerdy or semi artistic to do.  Since i spent 4 days in SF two years ago I don’t know if I’m going to want to hang out there for three days till the next football game. I could drive down to LA or up to… some place…???  By this time in the year, the NBA and NHL seasons have probably started, or at least their pre seasons have, so I can probably occupy some time with a Warriors or San Jose game.

The only problem with that is that I don’t like Hockey and two years ago I actually saw a Warriors and a Sacramento Kings game when I was out in Cali.  So this time maybe I could get lucky with the Lakers or clips having home games.  Or I could find more San Fran stuff to do like checkout the Redwoods or become a vegan.

Thursday October 22nd:  The Niners host Seattle on Thursday Night Football. Odds are this is going to be a bad year since half the team is retiring during the off season, but I’m’ still going to be overly optimistic of their chances to beat Seattle in this game.

Friday October 23rd – Saturday October 24th: Hit the road for San Diego, with probable stops at Los Angeles and many, many, many casinos on the way.   If the LA NBA teams are hosting either of those days, I will try and make sure I get some tickets.  If not then maybe I will head down to San Diego expecting to arrive late Friday night, and then spend all day Saturday doing San Diego type stuff.  I don’t know what that is, but I’m sure it will be… seriously what is San Diego known for aside from being the Setting of Anchorman and a much nicer place than L.A according to Phillip Rivers?

Sunday October 25th: San Diego Chargers host the … ugh…. Oakland Raiders.  This will be the third consecutive year I have seen the raiders play a gam.  The first time was when I went to a game they hosted against the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013.  They got destroyed by Alex Smith, which I was alright with.  This past August I saw a preseason game at Lambeau field where they got their asses handed to them by Rodgers and a bunch of backups.  This year they will probably get cur stomped again. I’m totally fine with the raiders loosing since their fans are kind of assholes.  Still, I would like to see different teams, especially when they have players that are of note.

Monday October 26th: Phoenix cardinals host the Baltimore Ravens…maybe.  Well that is definitely the game being played that day, I’m just not sure if I’m going to want to drive all that way just to hopefully see an NFC team lose to Joe Flaco. Since I will be renting a car in Vegas to do all this driving I am going to have to drive back to Vegas and not fly back from San Diego.  Yes I could do one of those things where you rent one place but return the car somewhere else, but if you aren’t returning the car some place relatively close, it is crazy expensive.

The problem is that Phoenix seems close to Vegas and San diego when compared to its proximity to Harrisburg Pa. But in reality it is a 5 hour drive from SD to PHX, and 4.5 hours from PHX to Vegas. On the other hand, there are tickets for that game that are only 49 bucks and it would be cool to go to a Monday Night Football game.

$$$$$$$$$$$$$:  If I am estimating my costs for the trip, which I am as you are about to see, the flight would be about $225, the hotels each night are about $45.00.  Each NFL game is around $120. Rental car would be about $300, and gas for the approximately 1700 miles I plan on driving would be something under $180.  There will be a ton of random expenses like for parking at the events, or tolls while driving, or Los Angeles Super Model Hookers, or meals, so I should probably add another $35 a day if I am being super frugal. Grand total comes to $2065. Yikes.

Granted I could lower a lot of my estimates, first by getting a car with better gas mileage and buying the gas in cheaper towns instead of San Fran like in my estimates above. Plus hotels even at a 20% tax could be as low as $35 bucks with my employee discount  I’m sure I can find a rental car discount to get closer to $250 and If I’m getting free breakfasts every morning at the hotel, maybe I won’t spend so much on miscellaneous like food and pricey LA hookers. So maybe a better estimate for the cost of the vacation would be a range from $1500 to $2200. Maybe as low as $1300 if I cut out the trip to Phoenix.

Nerd Stuff: So what random stuff can I do during my trip that will sate my hunger for all things geeky?  Well maybe it isn’t that geeky but I could take my camera and hit up Alcatraz or go Wale Watching.  More Geeky would be to do one of those timed locked room mystery things I saw on Conan and ranked highly on tripadvisor for thing to do in San diego.
http://teamcoco.com/embed/v/88777#playlist=x;eyJ0eXBlIjoicmVsYXRlZCIsImlkIjo4ODc3N30

There is the “3RD I Film Festival South Asian Film Festival: Bollywood and Beyond” that honestly sounds too artsy for me. Or I could go real artsy fartsy and in LA go see the Lion King musical.

Or, best Idea yet, I could drive up to Palo Alto and visit the headquarters of Hooli or PiedPiper.

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iko4s3CfBi0