Heading To Albuquerque

Just got back from a late night restaurant trip with the kids. We went to Norms and got two plates of food that we all shared and the kids were great and Jack kept saying ‘My tummy is full…almost!’ and then eating another bite of pancake or french fry.

My producing partner Rich and I are heading to Albuquerque New Mexico in the morning for meeting and some production work on the Brad Carvey reality show. It’s about a 10 hour drive and we’ll be there for a couple of days. I should be able to blog and send some pictures but who knows?

Why Pixar Makes Good Movies

Lasseter and Pixar colleague Ed Catmull now oversee animation at both companies, aiming to change Disney’s executive-driven, profit-is-king approach to cartoon creation to one in which storytellers are free to craft the best films they can.The approach has paid off at Pixar, where huge audiences inevitably followed because the movies were simply so good.

“It’s like the old Disney company,” said voice star Oswalt, a lifelong animation devotee. “They would say, ‘We don’t make movies to make money, we make money to make more movies.’ That’s the attitude at Pixar.”All these other animation groups want to be like Pixar, but they steal the wrong things from them. They don’t steal the actual process, which is take your time, hold out for the good stuff, which is kind of what ‘Ratatouille’ is all about. Don’t just stuff yourself with bland garbage. Wait for the good stuff.”

Like George Lucas’ Lucasfilm, where Pixar began as a visual-effects unit before Apple Inc. founder Steve Jobs bought it in the mid-1980s, the company is based in Northern California.Geography helps keep it isolated from the whims of Hollywood, where studio executives are notorious for interfering to the point where many movies turn to mush.

“They don’t suffer from too-many-cooks syndrome. They don’t suffer from, ‘We have to please everybody,’ which ends up pleasing nobody. They make movies they would like to see, and it works out,” said co-star Garofalo, who described Pixar’s workplace as a playground for creative adults.

Wizards at Pixar work hard to stand out – CNN.com

Hollywood will be the business center of the U.S. entertainment industry for some time to come, but increasingly the creative center will be wherever it needs to be – Northen California or New Zealand or Austin or Albuquerque.

Lifehacker’s Best iPhone Apps

The iPhone won’t be out for a few hours, but there are already third party applications that bring cookbooks, word processing, Flickr, and finding cheaper gas prices to the early adopters.

Today’s top 10 features the best iPhone applications that should be ready for your iPhone as soon as you pull the shiny monnolith from its coveted black box.

Lifehacker Top 10: Top 10 iPhone applications – Lifehacker

Gravel Tells The Truth About the Drug War In Debate

Former Alaska Senator Mike Gravel said the issue in America that “enrages me the most” is the war on drugs, which he vowed to end if elected to the White House. Gravel was speaking Thursday night at a Democratic debate at Howard University in Washington. Addressing a question on racial inequality, Gravel said the war on drugs had a particularly devastating effect on minority communities, noting that 70 percent of the more than 2 million people incarcerated in this country are black.

“If I’m president, I’ll do away with the war on drugs, which does nothing but savage our inner cities and endanger our children,” Gravel said.

The Raw Story | Gravel says he’d end war on drugs, ‘savage’ of inner cities, children

This really is a huge issue. As Gravel mentioned at the debate, in 1972 there were a little over 100,000 people in prison in the U.S. and today there are over 2,000,000. Think about that for minute.

Here’s Gravel a few weeks ago talking about the drug war. (Personal note, Gravel and I both grew up in Springfield, Massachusetts so I note his use in this video of the phrase ‘package store’ in referring to what most of the rest of the country calls a liquor store.)

She Walked Into The Sea

Is this a particularly British form of suicide?

A BBC executive died in mysterious circumstances after stripping off her clothes and walking into the sea. Kari Boto, 53, was plucked from the water by a helicopter crew and taken to the hospital where her husband works as a doctor.

But staff there were unable to save her. Witnesses had earlier seen the mother-of-three sitting on the beach at Old Felixstowe, Suffolk, with her head in her hands.A pile of clothes and set of car keys were found nearby. Police suspect she might have committed suicide.

BBC boss dies after walking into the sea | the Daily Mail

When I read this, I immediately thought of 1970s BBS TV series The Fall And Rise Of Reginald Perrin. I used to watch it on PBS, twenty-five years ago. If you aren’t familiar with the series..

The plot hinges on the mid-life crisis experienced by Perrin as he becomes desperate to escape his dreary life. He lives in a suburb of south London called Climthorpe on the “Poets Estate”, a suburban development differentiated from those around it only by having all the streets named for famous poets. He commutes each workday to Sunshine Desserts where he works as a sales executive. Each morning he is reliably and invariably 11 then 17 then 22 minutes late (as the series progress), yet each morning he gives a different excuse for his lateness[1]. These excuses become increasingly bizarre throughout the first two series (“defective junction box, New Malden”) reflecting the decline of both British Rail and his own mental health. His arrival at the office is illustrated with a sequence of him walking into the entrance under the company logo, which, again as the series progresses, loses more and letters from the name.

The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

But here’s the real hook…

At the end of the first series he fakes his own suicide by leaving his clothes on a beach in Dorset and running into the sea. (While this was coincidentally similar to a stunt pulled at around the same time by maverick MP John Stonehouse, neither was inspired by the other: the novel was written before Stonehouse’s faked suicide in June 1974 but not published until 1975. The phrase “do a Reggie Perrin” did enter the vernacular, however, no doubt assisted by the media circus that surrounded the Stonehouse affair.)

The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Thanks to YouTube…watch the opening…