Friday, December 30, 2005

Top 10+ movies of the year ...

Happy New Year/Kwanzaa/Hannukah/Christmas ...

Some new years resolutions ....

1. Write more

2. Do more art

3. Volunteer especially in mentoring and teaching ...

Seeing the parents was nice this weekend also saw three movies and willing to do an early top 10 list (incomplete)

I saw three this weekend

the first and by far the best and the #1 movie I have seen this year is "Walk the Line" ... ****1/4 ... this is an amazing biopic about June Carter and Johnny Cash and has amazing performances by Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon .. see it Now!

The second movie I saw was King Kong ... Having seen bits of this I had monster expectations .. This one was lots of fun and very bloated. The movie was better as a sum of parts then as a whole ***1/2 (#8 of the year?) ... The special effects were awesome especially Serkis as King Kong and the rest of Skull Island ...

I also saw the Chronic .. Chronicles of Narnia ... It was very weird having a main character and chief weenie as my namesake Edmund ....

The movie had nice effects and good acting but didn't really gel for me .. I give it a marginal thumbs up but **1/2 .. Lucy was well portrayed but the whole thing felt much too disney.

Without further adieu an incomplete top 10 ....

1) Walk the Line .. no doubt about it....

2) A History of Violence ... ****1/2 ... This one was very good and surprised me .. great acting by Ed Harris and Viggo Mortensen among others .. the one movie I don't want to say much about ... if you have seen you can e-mail me though...

3) The Corporation (2003) .. ****1/2 ... This movie devasted me .. .Just a fascinating story of the power of the corporation and its medical diagnosis ... Psychopath ... Only concerned with Shareholder Equity and Profits ... although not technically a 2005 release I saw it this year ...

4) SavingFace ... ****1/4 ... Although this is officially a 2004 release .. the release was very limited .. a wonderful love story about two Chinese lesbians who grew up in Flushing, Queens .. there is a lot here about family too ... WELL worth seeing ...

5) Batman Begins ... **** ... I forgot about this one .. the best of the Batmans since Tim Burton directed them ... I really liked this one ... I probably liked War of the World better save the ending ... I loved the darkness in this one .. Christian Bale really worked ... Katie Holmes less so.

3, 4 undeserved by what I have seenof 2005 releases ... I hope there are movies I haven't seen that belong here ...

6) The 40-Year Old Virgin ... **** ... Without any doubt the funniest movie I saw all year ... and lots and lots of heart ... Steve Carell is amazing in this one ... His relationship with Catherine Keener is beyond sweet....

7) The War of the Worlds ... **** .. . For the ending alone ... lost half a star ... This movie spellbound me and was a better scare fest then the more critically loved King Kong ... Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning are very good as was the creature designed ..> V.V. good (maybe 3rd best of the year) without ending .. this really should be a 6-7 pick ... I have not seen some movies that might belong here like Syriana, Brokeback Mountain, Munich and Cinderella Man

8) Sin City ... The most visually inventive movie of the year ... **** ... Mickey Rourke's best performance ever ... Very interesting movie to watch ... Just a very fun movie.

9) In Her Shoes ... This may well be too high .. ***1/2 ... I really enjoyed this movie .. This was definitely one I saw with my wife's consent but I really enjoyed it ...

10) .. Star Wars 3/6: Sith .... ***1/2 ... Wow do I want to give spoilers on this one... I will just say outside the lines that this was my favorite of the 2nd trilogy .. It is nearly as good as Jedi ... Also one of the worst love stories ever .... Harry Potter 4 might take this spot ...

11) Fever Pitch ... ***1/2 ... A fun Drew Barrymore movie ... an odd retelling of the Nick Hornby though .. I enjoyed it but if you really want to understand the psychology of a sports fan read the book "Fever Pitch" by Nick Hornby about the horrors and joys of rooting for Arsenal Soccer Football in N. London ...

12) Kung Fu Hustle ***1/2 .. Just a lot of fun .. I enjoyed Shaolin Soccer more but well worth seeing ... Stephen Chow is a joy to watch ... Just a fun movie ...

Highest expectations not quite met ....

13) King Kong ... ***1/4 .. not sure it belongs on the top 10 at all .. .Kong was one of the great special effects creations ever and it probably deserves technical awards along with "War" ... Way too long at 3 hours 20 minutes ... Why did the ship take an hour ... Not sure if I bought the romances either ... Had huge expectations and was disappointed ...

An Honorable Mention to ....

14) Murderball ... ***1/4 ... This was a lot of fun .. I loved the hardcore Wheelchair rugby players ... Well worth watching ..

I also liked .... .
15) (to give 10 movies) Hitch .. *** .. This doens't really belong on a top 10 list at all but it was fun ... I enjoyed it ...

Please give comments and tell me more movies to put on the list ...


Yep now the list is even longer ... Haven't seen Wedding Crashers, or Penguins either

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Starting to Write Again

Its hard to retrieve the writing mojo.

It all went so easy during the month of November for NanoWriMo.... I was really enjoying my characters too... There was also a lot of therapy involved in No Filter ...

I am curious to go back through it ... there are a lot of scenes that I need to go back and add too ... Especially the ones of the naughtier variety ... I suppose there is something to be said for less is more sometimes...

It also sucks to be poor at christmas time. I am not subbing nearly enough, and have limited funds for Christmas.

I am officially bankrupt now too, I filed Ch. 7 bankruptcy on last Friday and met the judge. It was amazing how fast the preceding went. I was the second person in line and I was done in 5 minutes.

It was much harder to drive my car through the snow on December 10th. A rear-wheel drive 84 Mercedes 300D, doesn't always do so well in the snow. I was slipping and sliding everywhere, I also just got to court right at 9 am... The 15 minute trip to Portland took a good 40-45 minutes.

I also need to see some movies. King Kong looks ridicously awesome. Syriana very interesting, if convulted, Walk the Line looks great, and I have seen all the rest of the Potter movies. I think the movie of the week will be Rent.

Hopefully can see King Kong with the parents .... Off to Allentown, PA on Saturday to see my parents and have my wife visit their new house.

The kitty will miss us. This will also be Lanna's first christmas not with her brother.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Good Solstice.

Edmund Davis-Quinn

Thursday, December 08, 2005

One week after NanoWrimo

One week later

It feels weird not to write so much.

I am trying to wait 2 weeks to start editing my book as Chris Baty suggests in No Plot, No Problem. .. But I miss my book ... I want to get back to it...

I signed up for National Novel Finishing Month ... .... But I haven't doen anything yet...

Well I will see what it takes to get back to writing ...

I also have a major event coming up tomorrow that I will be very happy to be done with.

Also need to go to Filene's this weekend and make some money ...

It is tiring to work the holidays but so it goes .. I am not subbing near enough and need to find the next gig.

It would be nice to have a real job and not just be temping/subbing.

Edmund Davis-Quinn

Having money troubles sucks ... I should be making more money, but really don't want to do sales and don't have enough experience it seems for anything else ... Any suggestions??

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

The End!!!

The End
I think I have finished my book....

I might have an Epilogue in Edinburgh but not sure...I have to fill some things in too...

Here are the last few paragraphs ...

Mathilda and Timothy decided to hold each other for a few minutes, shower together, and then walk around Oxford.They kissed and then went out to the Oxford morning.

There was a story in The Independent, and a picture in the Sun, “The Magnificent Life of Timothy Higgins.” Tim and Mathilda were very happy to see them.

Tim and Math went out to breakfast outside. It was 70 outside, a little crisp and beautiful. The couple couldn’t have been happier together. They loved each other, and were blissful.


It ends very sweet ....

The final count is 55,877... barring any more filling in tomorrow ...

Its been a blast.I am considering some other projects in a few months...

One is Aviatic Park (working title) ... which is about genetically engineered birds from the military going hangwire in S. California and throughout the world.... Why would the Dep. of Defense do militarized bird research.

Another is the Magnificent Life of Mathilda Fitzgerald ... a sequel from Mathilda's perspective ... and there could be a lot others....Will be fun to see how this edits.

edmund davis-quinn

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

50,000 words+

I'm a Winner!!! 50,300 words With a 1,000 words today I am well past 50,000 words. I will even cross it on the Microsoft Word, Word count in 300 words ...

Of course I have been cheating with Author's notes but that doesn't add up to too much.

Lord Edmund, Mathilda and Timothy Higgins have now met. Here is my most recent excerpt ... Chapter 13, where I passed 50,000!!

Chapter 13

2:45 pm, The Fitzgerald Group, London

Wow, Tim thought, I am actually going to meet the head of the multi-billion dollar firm, Lord Edmund Fitzgerald. Even stranger I was invited by my current girlfriend, and his second wife.

He called Mathilda on the phone 45 mins ago, and she said to meet her in the lobby about right now. It was nice to be able to talk to her on his cel phone and be in reach. He wasn’t sure if this was an interview or just a discussion, he had a feeling it was both. Tim didn’t always interview well, he was sure this was going to go much better then Birmingham.

The morning had gone pretty well, the Mirror had a page 40 story saying that Math’s new love was an American, basically a repeat of the Sun story. Other news with David Beckham, George W. Bush, Tony Blair and Julia Roberts had trumped the Math Fitz story. He had a feeling this wouldn’t hold forever.

“Hi Math, nice to see you here. How do I look today.”

“Tim, you look great, give yourself two long breaths and we will go upstairs. How is your morning going so far? Nice to not be the cover story in the tabloids.”

“Sorry, I couldn’t make lunch with you, I had to eat at my desk so we could spend this time with Lord Edmund. I had more work then I thought I would, what have you been up to.”

“Well, I made it over to the British Museum for a few hours and looked at all the things the British Empire stole from the world. That place is wild. Its too bad the British Library is in that boring building though.”

“How are your feet doing?”

“Pretty good, I have been soaking them a lot. Thanks for letting me sleep in at your place for a few hours. Its nice that the tabloids are less interested too.”

Mathilda then gave Tim a kiss and said, “Well, Sir Edmund is waiting for us. He always thought the title of Prince was too much anyway.”

Tim and Mathilda went up the elevator to the 35th floor. They needed a key to get up to the executive offices, which Mathilda already had. “Tim, I love you. Be calm and you will be fine.”
When they reached the top, they saw Lord Edmund was waiting for them. It was 2:55. “Wow, Mathilda, you are a little early. This must be Timothy’s doing. You were never on time with me.”

“I assume you are Timothy Thomas Higgins… I quite like your suit. Mathilda has told me a lot about you, so try to be calm. I am Lord Edmund Fitzgerald, the Duke of Edinburgh, and ex-Prince when I was married to the Lady Quinne. The Queen didn’t like it very much when I divorced his niece.”

“Shall we go into my office.”

Mathilda whispered to Timothy, “You are doing fine so far, just keep your composure. I love you, keep smiling, and laughing and you will do great.”

Lord Edmund Fitzgerald’s office had an absolutely commanding view of the Thames and the City of London. “So what do you think of the top of this old building. When you have been in business as long as the Fairchilds and DeBeers, and other such holding companies, you accumulate some things.”

Tim thought it was like going to the British Museum again. So many amazing antiquities and early stock certificates. “Sir, I must say this is a beautiful office. And a most amazing view of the city.”

“I agree Mr. Higgins. I especially like viewing over St. Peters and the City of London. People thought we were crazy to make a 35 story building in 1890, but there are many higher buildings since.” Lord Edmund pointed to the Docklands and all the cranes building even more throughout the Eastern end of London to Greenwich. “Its quite amazing how London has grown as a banking center.”

“When I was a young lad, this was one of the higher buildings of London, and most of the financial district was near the walled City of London. Its amazing how much the financial district has grown eastward. And how much the Fitzgerald Group has made providing those loans.”

Tim couldn’t help but be impressed. Everything was immaculate, everything was perfect.

So there it is Edmund Charles Davis-Quinn ...


I passed it around 11:55 today here in snowy Maine.

This is quite amazing ... I am at around 50,700 now ...

Its been a blast and I still have a bit to do .. I do have around 2,282 words in author's notes ...

Check out my book blog at


p.s. I have crossed 50,000 in word too ... total current count 50,813

Sunday, November 20, 2005

No words yesterday!

No words yesterday!
After my writing dynamo this month, I did no words yesterday!

Zero. If you wonder why, its because I had a full day in retail.

I was there from 9:15 to 6:15 with a one-hour lunch.

It was the "best sale of the year," meaning lots of customers.

I also desperately need to get new dress shoes, so my feet got really tired.

By the time I was home about 6:40 I watched just a bit of the Auburn-Alabama game. Auburn was leading 28-10 and won by the same score. I just wanted to lay down.

By 7:45 I went to bed. At 8:00 my mom called, it sounds like she totaled her car and now drives a 2001 Chrysler Concorde, I was barely there and just slept.

I kinda half got up at 12:30 and with the Kitty's urging at 6:00 .. but didn't really wake up until 8:20 am or so ....

I have choir at church today, and had to wake up after sleeping for more then 12 hours.

I did get 630 words in this morning though. This means even with yesterday, I only have 700 words to 45,000

...I have a lot of church today, and work retail from 4-9 tonight. I should have an hour and a half to type with the Nano Mainers at Panera ...

Hopefully that will get me over 45,000 words, and I will have some energy tonight.
I still want to pass 50,000 by Wednesday.

Edmund Davis-Quinn

p.s. I wish I could hold the return formatting when I do these blogs.

Its very frustrating ...

You can see the same posts and other book posts at

Friday, November 18, 2005

42,000 words

42,000 words

I got another 1,300 words in this morning.

The book is going very well.
I also find that I find other writing easier. I am becoming a blogging fool.

I am also applying to work as a reading specialist/ed tech III in South Portland, ME school district.

I think it would be great to work with first graders and improve their reading.Wish me luck.

edmund davis-quinn

Thursday, November 17, 2005

40,589 words!!!

Wow 40,000 words!!!
Wow officially at 40,000+ ...

Already did 2,000 words today . I could fill in a lot of sex scenes too ....

40,589... And still 13 more days!!!
Its amazing to think I have only 9,481 left ...

And I will probably do another 10,000+ after that :))


This feels really good, there is a lot of tenderness between Mathilda and Timothy.

It is starting to feel a lot like my wife and me.Its nice to have them just massaging each other.

Tenderness is such a lovely thing.I am really liking my book and have ideas for others.

I really can't believe how much fun I am having!!

And under 10,000 to go (plus likely to write 10,000 after that)..

edmund davis-quinn

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Whats the weather like today .. today is subby

Well the book is going very ... very well ..

I am up to 37,000 words .. the 50,000 word goal of NanoWrimo is getting quite close.

I also got called to sub today ... yay!!!

Quite frustrated about the $125 excise tax on my car in Maine .. they base it on the original price of your car .. my car might have started at 32,000 but its 22 years old .. my merc 300D 84 is probably worth around 2,000-3,000 now especially with a little bit of body damage and chipped paint .. this makes the tax like 5% of my car's value ...>GRRRRRR

I have three blogs to mention...

My book blog ...

Has some excerpts as does this journal in blog format
also started ...

My travels in beer land and various reviews of beer ... 1st entry some fun at the Great Lost Bear in Maine .. If your curious most of the beers were 4 oz samples ... except for the Allagash Curieux which was an 8 oz beer with like 13% alcohol (most beers are around 5% or so)
And my main home page ...

which you are at right now ....

Have a nice day y'all ...

edmund davis-quinn

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Royalty showed up in my book

Wow Royalty Showed Up

Somehow when I was typing today at Sam's Club of all places, royalty showed up.
It turns out that my character's current love interest as an ex-husband who is Sir Edmund Fitzgerald, the Duke of Edinburgh.

Evidently the press still follow Mathilda around and are curious what she is up to.

It looks like Timothy and Mathilda are going to be on the cover of the Sun and The Mirror tomorrow in my book.

I also have almost 2,000 words today to bring the total official wordcount to 32,855

I will update things as they progress.I am having quite a history for Mathilda as well.

I guess she is going to be a BIG part of the story.

Excerpts will come later.

ed davis-quinn

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Give Rutgers some love ...

How sad is it that I am thrilled that Rutgers beat Syracuse 31-9 today to be 4-2 overall (2-1 Big East) ...

And that my SG Fantasy Football team (Westbrook Eagles) is 5-0About the Rutgers game...

Rutgers has traditionally been one of the WORST football programs in all of Division I-A... the Temple Owls traditionally kept Rutgers from going winless in the Big East ... Rutgers won a road game against a rival and now has beaten both Pittsburgh and Syracuse in league this year (both are having awful years)...

In even better news my wife started a new job at the Univ of Southern Maine (which she is thrilled about) and getting lots of teaching gigs.

I also finished filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy last week. I would love to see some movies soon ... has anyone seen "A History of Violence" or "Wallace and Gromit"?? ... I would also have loved to have seen "March of the Penguins..." ...Blessed be enjoy your October and the leaves changing ... even in the soggy Northeast )ecq

Extra note .. I saw History of Violence .. it was excellent ****1/2

I saw Wallace and Gromit very good .. not as good as chicken Run or the shorts ... ***1/4


Sunday, June 12, 2005

Review Madness

So after the difficulty of this last week .. My aunt is has a memorial service in Greenville, CA on Wednesday ... My wife's birthday is wednesday .. and my father-in-law is having open heart valve replacement surgery on Thursday....

So I have been distracting myself too much when I really need to get a job.

Video Game Reviews:

Simpsons Hit and Run *** .... A fun game but the mission format gets very frustrating would be nice if there was just a run around mode ... I like Simpsons Road Rage much better ****1/2.

Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition ***** ... A great racing game!! ... I decided to return it to Blockbuster (can always get a new copy later) but had it out for a month and a half. An absolutely dynamite street racing game with great cars and competition. Spent 55 hours+ playing it and it was very hard to return.... Really, Really, Good.

Max Payne 2: 0 stars/Incomplete .... Couldn't figure out how to get out of the opening level (returned)

Jax 3: (rented) .. Tried it yesterday ... looked fun but couldn't get through opening board ( lava on opening board ??????!?!?!?) .... 1 star/Incomplete .... the first learning board should be MUCH easier.


Star Wars 3: ... . the best of the new trilogy. Still very bad acting and writing (Lucas prefers digital tech stuff to plot and acting) .. But very good ... I have some problems with the climax and what a big switch it is ... If the Jedis are so smart, they should know more ... Would be happy to discuss ....l Good though .. maybe as good as Return of the Jedi ***1/2

Be Cool (rented) .. . A fun movie. Ridicuously overstuffed .. Nowhere near as good as the efferecent fun Get Shorty (****1/2) ... This would have been better with less actors and music videos in the middle. A ridiculous movie but watchable **1/2

Racing Stripes *** .... I liked this much better then I thought I would ... This is a very nice fun movie with talking animals ... Not as good as Babe or Babe 2 .. but much better then you think a talking zebra movie will be ... Sweet, very nice family film.

I also read a fantastic book this week called The Pact: Three Young Men Make a Promise and Fulfill a Dream by Drs. Sampson Davis, George Jenkins and Remeck Hunt.

This is an inspiring story about three black men who grew up in Newark and Plainfield, NJ where unfortunately black men are more likely to go to Prison then Graduate School. The three made a pact to all become doctors and made it. An absolutely inspiring story about how having friends and positive peer pressure can make a difference.

This book is also very scary in how much life in the underclass has to change.

I recommend this very, very strongly *****+


Sunday, May 22, 2005

A difficult week ... Saw some great movies though.

have had too much death around me last week.

My aunt Louise died at 62 ..... Her situation is tragic and she was relatively healthy except for cancer.

Thanks everyone for your thoughts.

I have something else I want to say.

My aunt had her vagina removed for vaginal cancer, but didn't have chemotherapy because she didn't have health insurance.

2 years later she had a relapse and there was metasized cancer over much of her body including her lungs ... She died about 6 months later...

Health Care needs to change in this country!!!!


There was also a Senior at Westbrook HS (Maine) that died Thursday Night/Friday Morning and would have been graduating in a couple of weeks. It is always a great tragedy when someone dies at only 17.

In a totally different strain I have seen 3 very good movies this week.

Just wanted to say hi .. just saw Star Wars III today ***1/2 which is the best of the new trilogy by far and may be better than "Return of the Jedi" ... There still was some very bad writing and digital backgrounds that look to pretty for their own good ... I do have a big problem with how Anakin goes to the Dark Side though ... Would be very willing to talk more.

Saw the absolutely brilliant "My Architect" on Thursday ****1/2 .... A devastating documentary about a bastard child whose father was Louis A Kahn, considered one of the great architects of the 20th Century ... Really Really good ... This one made me cry and still affects me now.

Just saw "Primer" and watching the director's commentary right now ... This is a headtrip of a movie and very interesting ... I would definitely recommend using the subtitles with it .. .One of the most interesting Science Fiction Debut since Aronfosky's "Pi" .... ****

Off to the Berkshires for a festival all next week. Will be nice to disconnect ... Definitely want to burn some death tokens for my grandmother, aunt and the HS student I didn't know all that well ... We must never forget the dead and recognize their importance ..... This is something I disagree with Yoda entirely about.

Edmund Charles Davis-Quinn

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Louise Foote 1943-2005

My aunt Louise Foote, my father's sister passed away today at 62.

She leaves behind two wonderful daughters Alexandra, 33 and Julia, 26 ... And a longtime boyfriend Norman.

She was a wonderful woman and will be missed.

Louise Foote June 2, 1942 - May 17, 2005

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Stand-Up Show .. ISS

Wow I haven't updated in a while.

Just finished a stand-up comedy class this week and had the class graduation show yesterday afternoon which was a lot of fun ... Although this class went out MUCH less then my UCB improv classes in NYC ...

This week I mainly subbed for ISS (in-school suspension) in the High School .. Not the most exciting gig in the world but I did get a lot of reading done and had a little bit of a chance to tutor (which I really enjoyed) ... Is it just me though or is a full day of ISS a lot for a forgotten detention (would understand 2 detentions more)...

Getting psyched for Rites of Spring next week .. which is an awesome all-week festival in the Berkshires with all night drum circles, and classes and awesome energies .... I think me and the wifey really need it.

Also trying out for Man of La Mancha with the originals in Bar Mills, ME. We may get a known actor in the lead.

Thats all from Maine for now.

ed davis-quinn

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Movie Review ... NO ETEP :((

WEDNESDAY MAY 04 2005 7:16 PM

So I didn't get into USM for Teaching School :((

I am going to try to apply to get conditional certification jobs anyway.

So I have seen a few movies on DVD and two very good ones in the theatre.

I saw Comedian on DVD ... I am taking a stand-up class right now (Performance on May 14th at Comedy Connection -- Portland, Maine at 4 pm) .. It was nice to see Jerry Seinfeld humbled on stage trying out new material ... Very good ***1/4

I also saw Metallica-Some Kind of Monster ... It was good but took a while for me to get through on Netflix. Was good to watch while you were checking the internet .... .***

I really really liked the two movies I saw in the theatre today.

Check out Kung Fu Hustle before it leaves the theatre ... the movie is an absolute riot with some amazing characters... I may have liked Shaolin Soccer better but this was quite good ****

I also saw Fever Pitch. I was a big fan of Nick Hornby's fan biography on rooting for Arsenal in good times and bad... I really, really was surprised I liked this movie as much as I did. It was a great romantic comedy, and showed some of the insanities of Red Sox Nation. Well done by the Farrelly Brothers ****1/4

I have also seen Sin City recently. This was an absolute blast. Mickey Rourke gave the best performance of his is decades and was the real stand-out. This movie is basically 3 graphic novels put together on the screen. A real knockout and very likely to be in my top 10 of the year ****1/2

Wish me luck on the summer job search and give me good vibes for the stand-up show and applying to jobs to teach in Maine and environs.

Ed Davis

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Playful Kitty

Its amazing how much debt I put myself in.

2 years of MBA and no real job since will do that to you.

Sub Teaching is fun but unfortunately doesnt pay all the bills nor happen in the summer. I think I need to find a 2nd job now that will continue through the summer.

The wife is trying to start up a training and creativity workshop business and I think she is awesome.

Have an interview for ETEP (Ext. Teacher Ed. Program) at Univ. of Southern Maine on Monday for Elementary Ed (k-8) ... I hope it goes well ... Thinking Grades 3-6 are about the right way to go.

Kindergarten and 1st Grade are too young for me.... and really like the older elementary school kids. They are still precococious and often quite willing to learn.

My kitty Hunter is also being very playful right now.

And knocking stuff all over the place.

Blessed be.


Saturday, April 02, 2005

New Dell

I just purchased a new shiny Dell Inspiron 2200 laptop ... oooohhhh!!!

Its nice to have my own computer now. With luck I will be using it for a teacher certification program next year.

Laptops rock!!

Also got the Final Four tonight. Although I have UNC and Illinois in my final (as does 90%+ of America) ... I would love to see Mich St and Louisville make it.

Rented two movies this week Grass and Garfield... One I recommend highly and one I thought had incredibly bad CGI.

Grass was excellent **** ... This documentary about the history of the anti-marijuana movement in the US was superb. There were many things I did not know about .. .such as the fact that 10 states decriminalized possession in the 1970s and President Carter had a bill in Congress to decriminalize less then an ounce of pot. Then unfortunately Reagan and the conservatives took over and said Drugs are bad.

An excellent movie, whether you are in the NORML crowd or just like documentaries and history.

Garfield was quite lame **. If we are just talking about the CGI cat 1/2*. This may well be one of the most jarring CGI jobs ever. What is really silly about it is all of the other dogs and cats in the picture, including Odie, are life and blood animals. It probably also increased the budget for this movie a lot. If you feel the desperate need to see it, I wouldn't stop you, but my wife wanted to stop halfway through it, and I rented it for her. Breckin Meyer and Jennifer Love Hewitt were cute in this picture but I can't recommend it because of the horrific Garfield, and the bad writing, .....

Enjoy you April you fools... the snow is getting washed away with 3 inches of rain this weekend in Maine. Welcome to mud season!!!


Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Why Portland, ME is better then NYC

Lets see.

1) parking, having the chance to have a car without a second rent and parking tickets.

2) there is still theatre, museums, comedy clubs, good rest and on average MUCH better bars then NYC ... better prices, more down to earth, better average music, much mellower.

3) Just less ... no crazy begging on subway ... no clothing shop across the street banging music (or mexicans downstairs) ... no drug deals and craps on the front step .. no worry about getting on the subway

4) Supermarkets ... C-town really, really, really sucks .. if you haven't lived in the 'hood you cant understand the smell of salmonella chicken (seems like they dont wash it) brown fruit and veggies and brown meat ... we were in shock when we first went to Hannaford and Shaws ... whats expired at Shaws is just starting its run at c-town .... I cant overestimate this ....

5) Livability/Space .... We have a full 2 bedrooom apartment in Westbrook with plowed parking spaces a cool landlord and our own bathroom and kitchen (thank god) for only a little more then our room in a railroad apt in Harlem Heights, Manhattan

6) Jobs ... Lanna made good money in NYC, but I wasn't accomplishing much. Its nice working almost everyday as a sub and going to get fully certified (traditional) most likely next year at the University of Southern Maine

7) Comedy ... Although my wife moved to NYC for acting ... She has an improv troupe she is performing with at the Comedy Connection in Portland (a better club then any place in NYC .. although I do love UCB as a improv space) and an acting troupe she has worked with in the past.

Getting close to having a home here with my wife of 9 months ... its great :)

Edmund Charles Davis-Quinn

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Project Runway/Ray Redux

Watching the project runway finale finally on DVR. I already watched the fashion show in the last 40 minutes the next day.

Watching the last show you get to like Wendy Pepper much, much better. I actually liked her clothes the best.

Kara Saun comes out very poorly, with her shoe steward, and silent treatment with Wendy. Also by lying by saying the shoes cost $15/each.

I always liked Jay. I do think his clothes are way afield on my tastes, but i guess there is genius there.

If you didn't know this a couple weeks ago, of course you probably were not a huge fan of the show.

I have a column about Ray Redux and Apocolypse Now Redux, and that sometimes added scenes, slow down the flow of a movie.... Both of these added versions, have very interesting scenes, but both really disconnect the flow of the movie.

I really think the French scene in Apocolypse is very good, but it slows down the movie a lot. The strangest thing about Apocolypse Now is that I liked the TV version (shortened and edited) the best. The original version on screen (saw it in class at college) seemed like a bunch of huge music pieces in order, and the Redux is very interesting but runs very slow.

In Ray, a gem of a performance by Ray Charles has extra scenes in the DVD. Many of the scenes are brilliant, but they are poorly edited in ... If you rent/buy the Ray DVD, see the original version first and then see the added scenes.

Have a brilliant March, Spring is soon although you wouldn't know it in Maine. Learned Meteorological Spring (March-May) is already here :))

Edmund Charles Davis-Quinn

Monday, February 28, 2005

Hey Look!! .. Its Beyonce Again!!

So another Oscar telecast came and went.

The speeches were shortened, you got to hear the orchestra through the speech, and the show still ran a little over 3 hours.

The Oscars keep trying to shorten the speeches, even going into the audience for one award, but there is one piece of really big, big fat the Oscar could trim.

Why does one of the most minor categories in the whole show, Best Original Song, get 1/6 of the broadcast.... When you add up Beyonce's three songs (although she sang none of them in the movies) from the Chorus, Phantom of the Opera (shouldn't Emmy Rossum have performed, not just introduced that) and Polar Express, with the Spanish language song from The Motorcycle Diaries (which won) and the only actual performer who I think was involved in the movie, the Counting Crows with Accidentally in Love from Shrek 2 .. you have about 30 minutes of show (20 minutes for the song, 4 for the award and at 6-9 minutes for commercials).

Best Original Song, is fundamentally a songwriters award. Personally I think the 5 second sound byte that most of the nominees get, would be plenty. If you take away the 20 minutes plus commercials that the songs received, it gives Oscar plenty of more time to do more important things. Like not rushing the winners speeches (including Best Picture !?!??!?) and having more meaningful tributes like those for Johnny Carson, the stars, directors, writers, etc. that died this year and for Lifetime Achievement.

Honestly most movies have songs already performed that help add to the time of the movie. ... For instance, Forrest Gump was full of old 60s songs; and the theme from Pulp Fiction is an update of Dick Dale's Misrolou (Sp.?) ... Songs like the one from Phantom are added to get fans of the musical to show up and get nominated for the award.

I just cannot understand why Best Song (if you look at the winner, many are HIGHLY forgettable) gets so much screen time in the rushed Oscar telecast.

Here is the time of each song. I=Introduction, S=Song, A=After Song (ie applause, etc), and T=Total Time

The Chorus (Beyonce????) Intro 0:25; Song 2:33, After 0:23; Total = 3:21(then commercials) .. Performance B- (and what was Beyonce wearing that for with a Boys Choir??)

Shrek 2 (Best Performance of the Night) I-0:20; S-2:35; A-0:20; T=3:14 (At least the band who played the song in the movie played, but this is the Oscars not the Grammys) B+

Phantom (Why didn't Emmy sing --- Beyonce Again???) I-0:44; S=3:19; A-0:15; T=4:18 (Not a bad song, but like most Andrew Lloyd Webber, one minute of song and then repeat twice) B

Motorcycle Diaries (Great playing by Santana -- Average singing by Antonio Banderas) I-1:30; S-3:15; A-0:23, T=5:08 (then Commercials) .... Decent song subtitles would have been nice B

Polar Express (Just hokey -- Beyonce for third time) ... I-1:00; S- 2:47; A-0:21; T-4:11; This was just sappy and repeated worse then Webber. Pretty Boring B-

So that adds up to about 20 minute and 21/2 commercial breaks which is around 6 minutes or so. It was nice that a Spanish-language song was nominated for the first time and won, for what I have heard is a wonderful movie in "The Motorcycle Diaries," but this category takes WAY WAY too long.

I really enjoyed the BAFTA and Independent Spirit Awards much more, because they let the winners talk and didn't engage in this silly starcraft. And how overexposed is Beyonce, she is pushing her relative stardom so hard with this Oscar telecast and the Grammys that I think her fall is soon.

Without this Best Song treadle, Oscar could easily come in at under 3 hours, and/or get some more interesting content that is important for the movie.

As for the rest of the broadcast, I like Clint Eastwood, but not recognizing Martin Scorsese as director for the excellent the Aviator (****1/2), when he has not won for such classics as GoodFellas (*****); Taxi Driver (*****); and in my mind the overrated Raging Bull (****); is ridiculous. I have not seen Million Dollar Baby yet, but Clint already got it for the again overrated Unforgiven (***1/2), and it was Marty's turn. Will the best living director (Spielberg is 2nd in my mind) have to wait for a lifetime achievement award for an Oscar???

I was extremely happy in the two victories for screenplay. Sideways (****1/2) and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind(*****) were my two favorite movies of the year. Although to give a talent like Charlie Kaufman only :30 to give his acceptance speech, is just absurd. I was also happy to see Cate Blanchett win for her great performance as Kate Hepburn in the Aviator (my third favorite of the year so far), although the stunningly beautiful Virginia Madsen well deserved it too.

Jamie Foxx probably gave the best speech of the night for his great performance in Ray, thanking his grandmother for being his first "acting" teacher. Foxx became Ray Charles in this movie, and with his work in Ray, the brilliant co-lead in Collateral, and what I have heard is a great performance in Redemption, has changed his status from a comedian on TV to one of the great actors in Hollywood. A most deserving award for a very good movie (***1/2).

I really did want to see either the Aviator or Sideways win best picture but so it goes. I plan to see Million Dollar Baby today in the afternoon, before the snow squall hits Maine tonight. I didn't get called to substitute today, so doing some cleaning and laundry. ... Also need to work on my application for teacher ed. at the Univ. of Southern Maine.

Enjoy March!

Edmund Charles Davis-Quinn

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Finally feel like I have a home again

Finally feel like I have found a home for the first time since I was in Claremont 31/2 years ago.

What an absolutely glorious feeling.

Really enjoying Westbrook/Portland, Maine so far. Its really lovely here and its nice to be able to drive to things again.

New York can be really wonderful. But there is so much constantly going on that its like a radio with constant loud static. Must say that I also like how much quieter it is here then in New York City/Harlem Heights ... I also dont miss the mexicans downstairs blasting music right under our bed.

Being out of a railroad apartment (one long hallway with many rooms with shared bath and kitchen) is also great. The dishes are ours, the cubbards are ours, the refrigirator is all our stuff and most importantly the bathroom is just us 2 not 8.

I am very lucky also to have such a wonderful wife .... She makes everything in my life better.

Happy Valentine's Day .. dont take it all too seriously. Edmund Davis

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Silly things in the news

Got snowed it today ... Surprised they called school this early ... There is not much snow on the ground ... but it is a little sleety ....Was reading the Portland Press-Herald today and two things disturbed me..... One is that President Bush's prescription drug bill does not allow the government to bargain for drug prices (totally insane because absolutely every medical insurance company does). ...The other is that there is a school in Central California that is putting RFID tags on all their children (like big pallets have) so that they can track them and see if they are late to class. Sometimes there should be when "safety goes wrong" ...I hope all you warm weather "flatlanders", "from away" ... are enjoying a nice calm February day.From Snowy Maine ... I wish you good day ... Edmund Quinn

It sounds like the US govt is paying retail for prescription drugs which nearly NOONE does .... from Canada At a press conference Wednesday at which a bipartisan group of senators announced a new bill to allow the re-importation of pharmaceuticals from Canada and other countries, none of the senators would comment when asked about King’s legislation. Instead, their focus was on forcing U.S. drug-makers to lower their prices by allowing re-import of drugs shipped to Canada and other nations where governments impose price controls. One of those senators, Sen. Edward Kennedy, D- Mass., said “a huge portion” of the new drug entitlement “is a windfall profit for the drug companies and the HMO’s.”The $720 billion Bush administration cost estimate “will add new pressure for us to pass this legislation” to allow drug re-imports, said Sen. John McCain, R- Ariz. He denounced what he called “the egregious and outrageous provision” in the 2003 bill that bars Medicare from negotiating price discounts with pharmaceutical manufacturers. He called it “a disgraceful example of the power of the drug companies.” One senator who was willing to express support for the idea of not having Medicare pay for Viagra was Sen. Tom Coburn, R- Okla. King’s provision “will fly through” Congress, Coburn predicted.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

2nd Graders

Finally subbed in Maine for first time today. I had a 2nd grade class. The kids are WAY too cute. Its interesting the kinds of drama they have too... .
Think if anything I may have been too nice.It was lots of fun, but I was VERY tired by the end of the day ... also got 4 valentine cards from the kids (was a project) ... The 2nd graders were fun (just learning how to read and do addition and subtraction) but think I may want a little older kids to teach permanently (4-5th grade???) ..
It is amazing how much the kids like their teacher though. I never felt that kind of love from 6-12th grade subbing in NJ.Enjoy Chinese New Year, Valentine's Day, and Mardi Gras :))