Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for August 12th, 2011

Movie movies

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A movie movie is a movie about the motion picture business. Sometimes, as in Movie Movie, it’s not really a backstage movie, but just pointing out (affectionately) the foibles of the business. In Movie Movie, you get a double feature: a B&W boxing movie—the kid has to fight to get money for his sister’s eye operation—and a Technicolor backstage (theatrical) musical. Much to enjoy—for example, the night club in the boxing movie reappears with some furniture changes as the star’s dressing room in the musical.

A movie movie can be a comedy, as is Movie Movie; a drama, as in Sunset Boulevard; a musical, as in Singin’ in the Rain.

Last night I watch a great example of a movie movie, plus a terrific comedy: Bowfinger, written by and starring Steve Martin, directed by Frank Oz, with Eddie Murphy, Heather Graham, Christine Baranski, Terence Stamp, and a cameo by Robert Downey, Jr. It is insanely funny, but it’s also a very affectionate take on the movie business and in particular the struggles and improvisations necessary to make a low-budget (under $3000) film (the film the director/producer Bowfinger (played by Martin) is making). It includes the magic of Martin and some of his crew seeing a crowd enjoying and applauding their movie: magic.

It also has a very intriguing color palate with a lot of golden hues. Watch for it.

Wonderful comedy. I think this is the third time I’ve seen it, and I laugh my head off every time. You can tell that the people in the movie know in detail about making a movie, and they love it.

UPDATE: And there’s a lot in the movie, lots of little stories—the Mexican apprentices who become experts, the bed-hopping career woman, the insane cult that captivates a high-roller movie star and milks him for all he’s worth, and more.

Written by LeisureGuy

12 August 2011 at 3:26 pm

Posted in Movies & TV

Brush program for next four weeks

with 3 comments

I’ve decided to devote the next four weeks to shaving brushes:

Week 1: Synthetics
Week 2: Boar
Week 3: Horsehair
Week 4: Badger

Other themes as they occur to me.

I also play requests.

Written by LeisureGuy

12 August 2011 at 3:11 pm

Posted in Shaving

Mac stuff

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I just got my new super-thin keyboard cover. (I forgot to remove my old one when the Mac went in to have its motherboard replaced, and when the Mac returned, keyboard cover was gone. But they’re less than $3—except for this one: 1/5th the thickness of the silicone keyboard covers. Imperceptible.) Very nice, though it doesn’t seize the keys quite as much as the other cover: this one more just lies on top of the keys. Still, perfectly serviceable.

Mac is pretty aggressive about pushing software. I get regular emails (from which I’m sure I can unsubscribe) for various apps. And it works because the apps are in general free or available at a cheap price, plus instant delivery. Cool model.

After getting the computer back, the touchpad seems much more hair-trigger. I frequently (every few minutes) will find that the cursor’s jumped somewhere else as I type, and the end of the word I’m typing can appear anyway or (if the cursor jumps outside the data-entry box) nowhere. I don’t much like that.

I think I figured out why the new “natural” scroll direction that OS X Lion favors is so unnatural. That scroll direction works fine on the iPad and the iPhone: your fingers on those devices work directly on the screen, so to move what you see on the screen (and what you’re in effect touching) in a downward direction, you (naturally) pull your fingers down.

But on the MacBook, your fingers are on the trackpad, not the screen, and the intermediary position of the trackpad—between your fingers and the screen—changes the mental model. Your fingers now are not on what you see on the screen, and when you move your fingers down, you are (naturally) trying to pull the screen down so you can see text below what appears on the screen: the fingers in this case are not pulling the “paper” but the “screen”, and when pulling your fingers down the trackpad, you anticipate that the screen will similarly go down (and the text that appears in the screen will go up). Lion’s default setting violates that expectation.

Written by LeisureGuy

12 August 2011 at 9:17 am

Posted in Daily life, Technology

Release the Toggle!

with 2 comments

A spicy morning, as you see. The Vie-Long horsehair—I think this one is 65% tail, 35% mane—did a great job with Prairie Creations Spiced Rum, which (as you see) is a tallow+lanolin-based soap. Thick, dense lather with no problem.

I asked Juan at about the differences between mane and tail hairs. Bristles from tail hair are stiffer and more resilient, those from the mane are softer. Thus a particular brush can be blended as you want. Those brushes with a long loft tend to have more tail bristles to provide the strength required by the loft; shorter brushes can be 65/35 (tail/mane) for a scrubbier brush, or 50/50 for a softer brush. Interesting that it’s easy to tune them.

I think it would be interesting to have a set of 5 horsehair brushes with a moderate loft—say, like the brush shown—whose tail/mane ratios 100/0, 75/25, 50/50, 25/75, 0/100 just to see what the differences would be. It would be a test set, as it were.

The great lather led, inexorably, to a great shave. Enter the Toggle, carrying a Schick Platinum Plus blade. Very smooth and easy 3-pass shave, followed by the alum bar and then, after a final rinse and dry, a good splash of Royall Spyce.

My Brompton back wheel is still rubbing on a support, so The Wife will take it back to Channell Wasson for another adjustment this Tuesday. No biking in the meantime.

Written by LeisureGuy

12 August 2011 at 8:20 am

Posted in Daily life, Shaving

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