Archive for cooking

VIFF … so far

Posted in Entertainment, Film, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 10, 2009 by blakejohnson

Alrighty then…been a longo time since I made any sort of update but here goes nothin’…

Been attending VIFF today, saw two films so far and thought I’d share my..thoughts.

The Anchorage

As far as a barebones indie first feature film effort goes, not bad. As far as an engaging, energetic, complex or intriguing film – visually or story-wise – not so much. Given the fact their goal was to make ‘something you wouldn’t normally see in Hollywood theaters’, it was alright. They said in a Q&A afterward, responding to a question about the acting we’re used to as being very expressive of emotion all the time, ‘but you don’t always express emotion, do you?’ More interesting than the questions were the answers, their seemingly interested-in-their-art while disinterested-if-you-didn’t-understand-it attitudes made for somewhat amusing back-and-forths between the filmmakers and the audience. There was a time when I’d have enjoyed this more, just not my type of movie really anymore.

Links:

VIFF Listing

Cooking History

This was a bit more my style: European history – specifically war stories – told by military cooks from Germany, Russia, Czechoslovakia, Serbia, Algiers, Croatia and France. It was interesting and sadistically amusing to see the contrast between these jovial cooks and their stories about the brutalities of war and watch their methods of killing and slaughtering animals (yes, multiple times) and preparing meals. A constant awareness is kept, however, of each of these people’s struggles during and after the wars. They’re very human, very worn and experienced, very real. Ultimately a portrait of people in war, food and moving on, it’s entertaining, touching, humorous, honest and pretty solid.

Links:

VIFF Listing
Film Website

There’s another coming up tonight, so I’ll letcha know about that ‘un too at some point. It’s an Irish thriller-romance…so yea, I’m lookin’ forward to it :P.

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I’m in town!

Posted in Friends, Journals, Life, News, People, Realtionships with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2008 by blakejohnson

Staying in Seattle with my brother and his wife was wonderful.  Now, living in my apartment, I realize and admire how comfortable of a life they’ve built for themselves.  It was great.  They’d be at work, and I’d be home.  I ventured off a couple of times and found a bookstore, a music store, a cafe.  Most of the time, I was home on the internet, or watching one of the hundred movies we pulled out for me to see, just the classics I hadn’t seen like Jaws, Predator and Alien.  And then there was The Usual Suspects, the Bourne movies and the Goonies.  Most all of the movies I watched there I liked.  Tuesday nights were game nights, so I met their friends I hadn’t seen since the wedding ceremony.  We had an action movie night one night, and a few other friends came over then.  Their two housemates were great as well, always friendly, always interested and joyful, joking.  And of course visiting Vancouver with them was even more fun then sticking it out alone.  I’ve seen a ton more movies since being up here, and rated and reviewed around 350 more online in the last 3 weeks or so.  Tuesdays were pie-making days also, when Juliana didn’t work she’d stay home and we’d make pies from her massive pie book together.  She’d really make them, I’d just help.  But it was fun.  And they usually tasted quite good by the end.  That was Jesse’s favorite part about Tuesdays.  He’d come home from work, say hi to me and the dog, and walk straight into the kitchen for a plate and a fork and dig in to the pie of the week.  It was fun.  We also did a baking day on Superbowl Sunday one weekend.  Nobody was interested in the Superbowl, but the food was excellent, so they made chili cheese dip, popcorn shrimp, bacon and potato skins, all the good parts of a Superbowl celebration.  And us guys watched some good action movies in the living room while most of the women cooked.  It was a good day. 🙂

Vancouver.  Vancouver is awesome.  The city itself couldn’t be more gentle or fun.  The apartment I’m in is just the right size for three guys who don’t typically cross paths for more than a minute.  My room is nicely sized, comfortable and well-lit…now.  And the people… Canadians blow me away.  Why aren’t Americans this nice to random people?  Maybe it’s because we’re roommates or maybe it’s because they’re friend of my family, but everybody I’ve met so far has been more than willing to drop whatever they’re doing and help out in some way.  It’s shocking, but nice.

I start school in about a week and a half, so I’m still getting used to the area around the apartment, finding new places to get groceries, household things like tape, light bulbs, etc.  I just got the internet set up today, and the roommates will pay me back for the router when I see them later tonight.  So far it’s been pretty quiet days at home, since the roommates have school and/or work, and I’ve got neither, and then some movie and food later on, with the occasional interest of one of them.  Tim goes to the school I’m going to be going to, only he’s in the Game Design program, so he’s doing a lot of 3D modeling and texturing, making characters and stuff for games.  He’s almost done with his clay version of a character, he said, and he’ll be 6 months through the program once I start.  Andrew’s finishing his masters in Health Economics.  That was a shock to me, since when I saw him he looked like he was just out of high school and starting college for the first time.  It was also a field I never thought existed until he mentioned it, but it’s something I now can’t imagine not existing, even though I’m really not sure what it is.

I moved up on Sunday, and it’s Wednesday now, so I’ve got no good excuse not to learn the bus routes soon.  Tomorrow I’m taking the closest one down to my school to see where it is, and meet one of my brother’s friends or a brief visit in the middle of his work day (see what I mean, and he’s not even Canadian!)  I’ll wander around and explore the area a bit, and finally come back home when I’ve explored enough for the day.  I hope it’s just so exciting I go back again on Friday, only it’s supposed to rain Friday, so maybe I won’t.  I’ve always got the apartment to stay in.  It’s still surreal, being in the apartment, thinking it’s partly mine.  Walking into the kitchen thinking it’s my kitchen, my living room, I don’t know if it’s sunk in or not, but it’s an odd feeling.  It’s kind of a feeling like I have this freedom, this ultimate freedom where my life isn’t determined by the schedules of other people, my daily life is completely and entire up to me, down to the absolute minute details, and yet I haven’t changed anything about my habits yet.  Maybe I will with time, and maybe finding new friends will cause that, but for now, I’m happy to have a place to sleep and eat and a brand new city to explore.

I'm in town!

Posted in Friends, Journals, Life, News, People, Realtionships with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2008 by blakejohnson

Staying in Seattle with my brother and his wife was wonderful.  Now, living in my apartment, I realize and admire how comfortable of a life they’ve built for themselves.  It was great.  They’d be at work, and I’d be home.  I ventured off a couple of times and found a bookstore, a music store, a cafe.  Most of the time, I was home on the internet, or watching one of the hundred movies we pulled out for me to see, just the classics I hadn’t seen like Jaws, Predator and Alien.  And then there was The Usual Suspects, the Bourne movies and the Goonies.  Most all of the movies I watched there I liked.  Tuesday nights were game nights, so I met their friends I hadn’t seen since the wedding ceremony.  We had an action movie night one night, and a few other friends came over then.  Their two housemates were great as well, always friendly, always interested and joyful, joking.  And of course visiting Vancouver with them was even more fun then sticking it out alone.  I’ve seen a ton more movies since being up here, and rated and reviewed around 350 more online in the last 3 weeks or so.  Tuesdays were pie-making days also, when Juliana didn’t work she’d stay home and we’d make pies from her massive pie book together.  She’d really make them, I’d just help.  But it was fun.  And they usually tasted quite good by the end.  That was Jesse’s favorite part about Tuesdays.  He’d come home from work, say hi to me and the dog, and walk straight into the kitchen for a plate and a fork and dig in to the pie of the week.  It was fun.  We also did a baking day on Superbowl Sunday one weekend.  Nobody was interested in the Superbowl, but the food was excellent, so they made chili cheese dip, popcorn shrimp, bacon and potato skins, all the good parts of a Superbowl celebration.  And us guys watched some good action movies in the living room while most of the women cooked.  It was a good day. 🙂

Vancouver.  Vancouver is awesome.  The city itself couldn’t be more gentle or fun.  The apartment I’m in is just the right size for three guys who don’t typically cross paths for more than a minute.  My room is nicely sized, comfortable and well-lit…now.  And the people… Canadians blow me away.  Why aren’t Americans this nice to random people?  Maybe it’s because we’re roommates or maybe it’s because they’re friend of my family, but everybody I’ve met so far has been more than willing to drop whatever they’re doing and help out in some way.  It’s shocking, but nice.

I start school in about a week and a half, so I’m still getting used to the area around the apartment, finding new places to get groceries, household things like tape, light bulbs, etc.  I just got the internet set up today, and the roommates will pay me back for the router when I see them later tonight.  So far it’s been pretty quiet days at home, since the roommates have school and/or work, and I’ve got neither, and then some movie and food later on, with the occasional interest of one of them.  Tim goes to the school I’m going to be going to, only he’s in the Game Design program, so he’s doing a lot of 3D modeling and texturing, making characters and stuff for games.  He’s almost done with his clay version of a character, he said, and he’ll be 6 months through the program once I start.  Andrew’s finishing his masters in Health Economics.  That was a shock to me, since when I saw him he looked like he was just out of high school and starting college for the first time.  It was also a field I never thought existed until he mentioned it, but it’s something I now can’t imagine not existing, even though I’m really not sure what it is.

I moved up on Sunday, and it’s Wednesday now, so I’ve got no good excuse not to learn the bus routes soon.  Tomorrow I’m taking the closest one down to my school to see where it is, and meet one of my brother’s friends or a brief visit in the middle of his work day (see what I mean, and he’s not even Canadian!)  I’ll wander around and explore the area a bit, and finally come back home when I’ve explored enough for the day.  I hope it’s just so exciting I go back again on Friday, only it’s supposed to rain Friday, so maybe I won’t.  I’ve always got the apartment to stay in.  It’s still surreal, being in the apartment, thinking it’s partly mine.  Walking into the kitchen thinking it’s my kitchen, my living room, I don’t know if it’s sunk in or not, but it’s an odd feeling.  It’s kind of a feeling like I have this freedom, this ultimate freedom where my life isn’t determined by the schedules of other people, my daily life is completely and entire up to me, down to the absolute minute details, and yet I haven’t changed anything about my habits yet.  Maybe I will with time, and maybe finding new friends will cause that, but for now, I’m happy to have a place to sleep and eat and a brand new city to explore.

Christmas Spirit

Posted in Family, Friends, Humor, Inspiration, Life, People, Realtionships with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 16, 2007 by blakejohnson

My mom and my sister are making waffles right now, and we’re going to decorate our Christmas tree after breakfast, so it should be a fun day.  I got a MacBook laptop recently for the college move and I’m sitting right now in the living room in front of a fire with my dog resting his oversized head on my lap, and typing this blog post to you.  It’s a nice morning, heh.  He twitches every time I brush past his ear with my hand.  Oh, and here comes the plow I think, now I’ll get ot drive to work later.  Heh, and the dog’s off to investigate the growling noise of the engine.  I’ll talk to you later.  Have a wonderful holiday, and thanks for wishing the same.  I hope things are very happy and warm.