Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Welcome, my friend.
Welcome to the Machine.

Well, T-Rex and Alison had a bouncing baby boy today. Vaughn Anthony. Somewhere around 8 pounds, ten fingers, ten toes, a head of dark hair and blue eyes.

He joins his sister, Birdy...

and brother, JM. I don't have a picture on my computer of JM... and that is something we shall have to remedy now, innit?

I am happy for them, and even more happy that I am returning home to visit them.

Welcome to the world, little feller.

I look forward to watching you grow up.


A couple things:

I have gotten a bunch of positive feedback regarding the post of my little adventure to the DMV. I am glad you enjoyed it, and even more glad that you took the time to tell me.

It was fun to write, and believe it or not, I didn't even really get pissed during the whole ordeal. I really couldn't believe it was happening. I was detached enough to be amused... and sort of relishing the prospect of writing about it.

Nevertheless, thanks to those of you who dropped me a line or called about it.

In that same vein, The Dude Abides has seen an increase in traffic over the last month. I am not really sure why. There are now about 130 unique visitors per day.

(Of course, some of those visitors are researching the hot topic of daughters and black dudes, or the guy today looking for "big boner jokes and pictures." Because big boners + jokes + pictures... damn, it doesn't get any better than that.)

Nevertheless, there are a good number of people who stop by here on a daily basis for a few minutes to waste a portion their workdays.

Thanks. It's one thing to write things for my own enjoyment, which I definitely do. But it is a whole 'nother thing (whole 'nother should be in the dictionary) to know that other people are reading it and enjoying it.

Kinda makes me feel good. Knowin' that the Dude is out there, abiding for all us sinners.

I like your style, Dude.

And I'm lost
Words I'll never find
And I'm left
As seasons roll on by

Oh, you handsome devil.

I have seen a few movies recently. OK, that's a lie. All I do is watch movies. 30 channels of HBO, Cinemax and Encore, plus the 3 dvd Netflix subscription (thanks, mom!) has obviated the need for regular television shows.

I can't even tell you who is in the Final Four, which is alarming, because for the second year in a row, I have made a wager involving the highest stakes of all:

Pork Products.

Last year, it was a pound of bacon that was the grand prize.

This year, we kicked it up a notch.

Oh yeah.

A rack of ribs is on the line.

But I digress. Pork can derail the thought process of any red-blooded man.

Where was I?

Ah yes, movies.

Jimmy and I went to see V is for Vendetta.

We both thought it was a good movie. I was hoping for "great," since 7 years ago, the Wachowski Brothers pretty much blew my mind with the first Matrix, and, in the process, absolutely flipped the bird at George Lucas, releasing it at nearly the same time as his weak-ass Phantom Menace.

Nevertheless... V was pretty cool, but it was no Matrix. The good news is that it was no Matrix: Revolutions, either. It was set in the future in England, run by a dictator and his hegemony of nefarious cronies who spy and eavesdrop on the citizens, repress civil rights and individual expression that was vaguely reminscent of... hmmm... slips my mind at the present.

Then along comes the man in the Guy Fawkes mask, V. He is an anarchist bent on bringing the ruling hegemony to his knees. Natalie Portman gets involuntarily dragged into his revolution.

The backstory that created V gets dribbled out to you throughout the movie, and, well, ¡Viva La Revolucion!

I enjoyed it. So did Jimmy. I give it a solid A-. Natalie Portman rules, but you already knew that.

We also saw History of Violence on DVD. It was interesting and different from the usual formulaic fare. The actors are all excellent- Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello and William Hurt- and they really make the movie work. With lesser actors, this movie could have sucked... but it didn't. I am not going to break down the plot, because this is already shaping up to be a marathon post. I give it a B.

Speaking of excellent actors carrying movies that would otherwise be mediocre, nobody, but nobody, beats Denzel Washington in this respect. Word. The guy is that good.

We also saw Cinderella Man, which is a really, really good movie. Russell Crowe is another one of those actors, whether you like him or not, who has the skillz to pay the billz. And this movie didn't need carrying. It is the true story of James Braddock, who was a boxer during the Great Depression. He had some success in the late 20's, but his career took a downturn and he and his family really hit bottom during the Depression. With nothing left to lose, he mounts a comeback that is inspirational to thousands. Sounds kind of cheeseball, but trust me, it isn't. And don't worry, Renee Zellwegger doesn't grate on your nerves too badly. Awesome movie. I give it an A. Rent it. You will not regret it.


Ah, I am experiencing major melancholia. I am sad that winter is drawing to a close. I can say without reservation that this has been the best winter of my 36 years.

I am going back to the Dam tomorrow for almost a week. When I come back, the lifts will be running for another week. (This is an economical decision, not a snow decision. There is a shitload of snow in the mountains and more on the way tonight. Powder day tomorrow... but not for me.) When I return from Wisconsin, I enjoy my final lift-served turns of the season.

Once the lifts close, I will be doing some backcountry snowboarding, which involves hours of hiking for one run. It's called "earning your turns."

Nevertheless, it makes me a little sad.

In other turn-of-the-season news, I broke my Nordic Trak Monday. The weld broke at the top, and now the arm pulleys are useless. Late last fall, I stopped running and started doing the nordic trak inside instead.

So, yesterday I hit the road running again. It is strange how your muscles acclimate to new activities. I ran a ton last summer and fall- about 30 miles a week- and it is as if I had never run before. I am sore in strange places, and my pace was very slow.

Oh well, a new challenge.

And for those long-time readers who remember me dodging the dive-bombing harrier hawks, I did not see any on my run. It appears that a bigger, badder breed of raptor is inhabiting our neighborhood- bald eagles. They are hunting succulent little ground squirrels. I saw one on my run yesterday.

So, maybe spring isn't so bad.

I wonder how that kid will turn out. I hope she turns out OK. But with Courtney Love as your mother, and addiction, depression and craziness emdbedded in your genetic coding, it seems the cards are stacked against you.


I wish he had stayed alive and continued recording music. I really do.

Godspeed, Frances Bean. I'm rooting for you.