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We looked at the weather channel online Tuesday and decided we might
be able to catch Pirates of the Caribbean in between the waves of
storms washing through town. So we boarded our stout ships and sailed
south to the friendly port of the Starlight Drive in. A few others
were already on deck, so we docked next to them and cranked up the
sea chanties I'd put on tape that afternoon and broke out the bottles
of rum we'd smuggled in for the evening. After countless previews for
movies about animals, the main feature finally started up.
A few years ago I returned to Disney World in Orlando and anxiously
waited in line for what was my favorite ride as a child, Pirates of
the Caribbean. I remembered almost every detail, even 15 years later,
since I'd ridden the ride a dozen times in my first visit to the
park. But I was very disappointed on my adult visit, not because the
animatronic pirates and such didn't match my childhood memories in
the level of detail or realism, but because they'd made changes in
the scene to make it less... well, pirate-ish. The pirates no longer
chased women through the town, they chased chickens. What the hell
good is being a pirate if you get the looting and pillaging but not
the raping? Or maybe the robotic pirate intends to rape the chicken,
I don't know, but it pissed me off.
So I was hesitant to see the movie version. I feared Disney would
skip past the whole reason pirates were feared and turn them into
heroes, instead of anti-heroes at worst, vile villains at best.
My fears were justified for the most part. I can't remember but one
non-bad-guy death actually portrayed on screen, and even that only in
a flash. But despite the watered-down piracy, there's plenty of fun
in the film. Johnny Depp is cute as swishbuckling Captain Jack
Eyeliner, perhaps the least macho pirate since Adam Ant, and even
then I might give Adam the edge. Johnny's mannerisms get sort of
tiresome after a while but he provides the most comic moments in the
Orlando Bloom does a good Heath Ledger as Will Turner, sort of a
Dudley Do-Right character who goes pirate-lite to save The Girl.
The Girl is played by Keira Knightley, who does a fine Natalie
Portman as Elizabeth Swann, not your typical damsel in distress but
instead perhaps the most macho character in the film. (Is anyone else
tired of the "independent woman" portrayed in modern cinema? It
smacks of overcompensating for years of excessively helpless women.
There's got to be a balance in there somewhere.)
As the film neared its climax, the rains returned, giving you the
feeling that you were really there getting splattered by salt spray
and we all scampered below decks to watch the film through the
falling rain.
The zombie effects are really nice and provide some of the few
surprises in the film. Otherwise, there's not much suspense, but
there is plenty of eye candy and quite a few laughs. Overall, I
really enjoyed the film. But it has the same qualities as Charlie's
Angels - I can't necessarily remember why I enjoyed it the next
But then again, maybe that's the rum's fault...

Degenerate BS sent us this:

A good pal of mine, Greg Brakel, was paralyzed in a skydiving accident in April, and he is presently recovering at Shepherds Center. While he had insurance, he is rapidly reaching his lifetime cap, so my running club and his skydive club are joining forces to sponsor a fund raiser on his behalf on Saturday, August 9th from 7PM to Midnight. This event will be at the Dogwood Brewery which is located at 1222 Logan Circle, NW, Atlanta, GA 30318. (Click here for directions - This event will cost $25 which will get you unlimited beer, food, and entertainment by Big Fish Ensemble, Dyllan Young and the Gordon Shay Band. There will also be a silent auction with lots of Autographed NFL Stuff, like a ball signed by all the Green Bay Packers as well as Autographed Hall of Fame Induction Football Signed by Pittsburgh Steelers legend, John Stallworth. There is also 3 day 2 night trip to a cabin at Lake Sinclair, Four pairs of prime Thrashers tickets and more. For more information on all of this, feel free to visit our running club's site, for all the details. Thanks man! Degenerate BS

If you think it's just manufacturing jobs moving overseas, think again:
Two senior officials at IBM, the world's largest computer maker, said
the company needs to speed its efforts to move white-collar jobs to
India and elsewhere overseas, according to a published report Tuesday.
In a recording of a conference call given to the New York Times by a
labor union, top employee-relations executives said IBM needed to
make the same moves its competitors have made to save money by
shifting service jobs away from the United States.

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