Just a few random shots and thoughts

Sometimes I have so much to say and show that I end not saying or showing anything.

By far, writing something is the more difficult task. Throwing up photos is easy . . . 

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Writing, on the other hand, can be daunting. It especially daunts when wanting to speak about serious stuff; opinions on current events, opinions on writing itself . . . heck, opinions in general. 

I could write about movies, like John Wick Chapter 2. What can I say? So few people do sequels well, and the people who did JW-2 are not among the few. Mind you, the production value was high, the action was amazing (too amazing) but the story . . . 

Here’s what I think happened. The success of the first movie was assumed to be for the most part due to the action scenes and Mr. Wick dispatching some seventy people. Certainly, that’s why I liked it. Bad guys dying is something I’ll happily watch.

The problem with the first movie is that as bad-ass as he was made out to be, if it weren’t for DaFoe’s character, Mr. Wick would have died a couple of times over (Deux Sniper Ex Machina). 

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For that matter, had I been the “bad guy”, I would not have sent all my men on frontal attacks against Mr. Wick. I would have had them surround the house and shoot him with a high-power rifle from a safe distance (the house has a lot of glass windows; it would seem like a no-brainer). 

The movie-makers must have realized this and wanted to remedy the perception. In this sequel, Mr. Wick dispatches something like 150+ people all on his own, no help needed. My wife says the number is probably 200+ people. That’s a lot of shooting, stabbing, strangling, penciling, etc. 

But, again, he lives through all the attacks because of the following:

The bad guys are fans of martial arts movies and attack one person at the time. Also, none of the bad guys are smart enough to use guns to the maximum advantage. The whole design of the gun is geared toward propelling solid metal chunks at a safe distance from a given target. It’s a mystery to me why the bad guys would want to get within a few feet of Mr. Wick unless they liked having their hands grabbed and twisted. Or, perhaps, they like being thrown and having their own guns used against them. 

I’ll never understand the criminal mind. 

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The movie is one long action scene with a few breaks thrown in so that the audience can see how civilized the world of professional killers is. It has protocols and traditions and even service sectors which can supply you with the best in guns and implausible armored clothing.  

But the plot . . . the plot. It disheartens me when I watch movies like this because I’m fairly confident I could write a better plot premise. Except, no one asked me. Instead, we get a convoluted dance around some cockamamy blood marker and protocol that must be followed before being allowed to kill someone. 

This movie is also an example of how women are held to a higher standard than men (or, that men get a pass because, you know, they are men.) I refer to the killer lady in the first movie who is executed because she broke the rules. Mr. Wick flagrantly breaks them and is given a one hour head start before being excommunicated as opposed to executed. Go figure. 

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By the way, I finally saw Captain America – Civil War. 

Another movie where the plot and motivation driving the movie is both transparent (or, it was to me) and nonsensical. In the case of CA-CW, the movie-makers got themselves enamored with big, pointless fight scenes. 

During one sequence, the superheroes are doing their best to disable each other. I mean, using their superpower to land powerful blows and explosions, and stuff . . . and then, one of them gets hurt, and Iron Man is all upset-like.

Dude! Like, you guys are throwing serious power around! What did you expect?

But again, the main premise . . . Crap! 

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It’s really difficult getting invested in movies when you can spot plot holes and inconsistencies. I mean, don’t get me wrong; they are passable movies, but I’m glad I did not go see them at the theater. Wait . . . I saw John Wick 2  at the theater . . . sonofabitch!

FYI, all of these shots are from the P900. Most of them, like the next three, are shot at the maximum optical zoom. Wait . . . only the first of the next three is at the 2000mm maximum optical zoom. The other two were pushed past that into the digital zoom realm. 

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So, here’s the interesting thing with this camera. I’m better at getting better photos from the camera. 

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But, back to movies. We don’t watch too many movies. We barely watch television. One show we’re currently watching is HBO’s The Newsroom

It’s heavily partisan, so that’s a bit annoying. I mean, not that I have a problem with exposing Republicans, but it was obviously made for a “liberal” audience because there is nary a mention of all the crap things Democrats do. 

Still, the characters are engaging, the writing is tight, and I’ll put up with the heavy-handed treatment of some subjects.

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For me, the writing is the main attraction. While the show assumes one is politically stupid, it does not assume the audience is generally stupid. The writing assumes people know words and sentences and can get references and jokes and stuff. 

It’s a refreshingly welcome departure from the typical TV fare where it’s assumed audiences need to get hit in the head with a sledgehammer for them to get the jokes. 

The show no longer airs, but I’m enjoying going through the three seasons. 

One general comment . . . the characters in the show? I would love to know them. I don’t mean the actors; I mean the fictional character. Not all, but most. I like their intelligence.

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Let’s see, what else?

Oh, yeah . . . I’ve been reading some of the free books I’ve gotten for being an Amazon Prime member (one free book a month). I really liked Mogworld (until the end). I started reading but did not finish three other books. These are published books and some are part of series. The fourth book (Uglies) I liked but it does not end; it leads into the second book which I will not buy because it pissed me off that the first book did not end. 

The three books I did not finish were, in my opinion, not well-written and with stories that are even less engaging than the characters. 

They are supposed to be thriller/action stories. I’m reading those because of my 2015 NaNoWriMo effort which I plan to shop around some. Reading those books was of zero help in improving my writing . . . which I’m not doing much of these days. 

I am, however, racking up rejections to my short stories. Thirty-one rejections and counting.

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One thing I noticed with the novels I have read . . . they sure describe everything. Many, many words describing the scene, the people, what they are wearing, their surroundings, and all sorts of details I can only assume will be relevant later on in the story . . . but that I will never find out because I stopped reading. Were I to put that much description into my works, my books would be nearly twice as thick as they are. 

Well, they are digital, so thickness is not a current virtue. What I mean is that going by word count, were I to pad as much as they did, I would be up in the 200K+ words stories. 

I’ve also read that books are now being screened by “sensitivity readers” . . . people who read books (getting paid as much as $250 a pop) and see if they are offended by anything. 

. . . I’m never gonna get published . . . 

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One more photo of something I tried:

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Here is the gallery of photos from this post:

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

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Note: if you are not reading this blog post at DisperserTracks.com, know that it has been copied without permission, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website.  Could be they also torture small mammals.

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Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would mean something to me.

If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards
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Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

Finally, if you interpret anything on this blog as me asking or wanting pity, encouragement, or advice to better my life, know my subtle mix of irony, sarcasm, and humor is blowing right by you.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
This entry was posted in Musings Stuff, Personal, Photography and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Just a few random shots and thoughts

  1. sandra getgood says:

    I wouldn’t worry about occasionally offending someone in your stories….never bothers me! I have a choice…agree with you or ignore it, and either way, move on, because something interesting will definitely happen. In your stories, something interesting always happens, and very often surprises me.

    Marvelous pictures…love the trees on the shoreline.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Thanks, Sandra. I appreciate the encouragement and the compliment.

      That tree is at the Old Kona Airport shoreline. We walk there every morning (5.5 miles) and then sit in the car to each a snack before going to the gym for another hour of exercises. That’s in front of where we park. It is our favorite view of that place.

      Like

  2. oneowner says:

    I don’t have HBO but I usually don’t like stories about the news profession or journalists. They always seem so self important and it usually comes across phony to me. But then again, I haven’t had my brain adjusted for a long time (since way before the election), so maybe I should try harder. I like the photos from the 900 but I think the digital zoom is strictly for marketing purposes.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      We don’t have HBO either; the series is on Netflix.

      And I fully understand what you are saying, and yes, yes, yes . . . you can almost see the self-righteousness drip from the characters and script. Of course, it’s the producers of the show that obviously want to send a message to us poor, dumb plebes.

      That said, it is smartly written with characters one can care for. Besides, any work of fiction, written or filmed, involves presenting a larger than life character — usually with high levels of competence — that are either very good or very bad. I’m pretty sure most movie heroes are not modelled after real persons and the action is seldom realistic.

      It is escapism, pure and simple, and if you happen to agree with the message, there is an additional kick one gets from seeing a likable and capable character agree with you on matters that are important. Of course, if you don’t agree, it can ruin the movie or book.

      I try to forgive a bit of pontification in stories and films because I know that’s part of the overall process of storytelling; the presentation of a moral.

      As for the Digital zoom, there is an option to turn it off so that the zoom stops at the 2000mm equivalent. I leave it on because I sometimes try it. It should be the same as me “zooming in” on a regular photo, but the in-camera digital zoom does give me a better version then the post-processed equivalent crop of a photo. I’m thinking it’s because they do work with raw data before applying whatever processing they do internally. Then again, I don’t play with it all that much.

      Like

  3. I’ve been wanting to go see John Wick 2. I am going to rewatch John Wick this weekend…just to refresh my memory. But, I remember enjoying looking at Keanu Reeves in the first movie. Ha.

    “Sensitivity readers”! Wow! That is crazy! If they had sensitivity readers eons ago a lot of books that are now considered classics probably would not have been published.

    Well, I really enjoy your stories, and your characters.
    I read a lot of books! And this doesn’t happen often…but when I read YOUR stories they play like a movie in my head and I love that!

    The photos you shared today are stunning! The lone tree by the ocean is beautiful! Oh, and the dove!

    Just for something to do late at night when all the world is asleep, I have been watching the old TV series Deadwood. It makes me laugh. And the people look like they would smell bad. Ha! In some new westerns the people look so clean and have pearly perfect teeth, etc. That bothers me, ’cause I imagine they all stank most of the time.

    HUGS!!! Happy Almost-Friday!!! :-)

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Thank you. I did like all those photos, and yes, the tree is a favorite view of ours (we see it every morning on our walk).

      As for John Wick 2, hope I didn’t put you off from watching it. Despite me bitching about it, I did enjoy the ride . . . the bitching came after.

      I didn’t mind the movie, but I thought the action was a bit overdone. Also, like I said, I would have preferred a better plot, something that I could get emotionally involved in, much like the first movie.

      I might have to give Deadwood a go (if it’s on Netflix). Meanwhile, this is worth another look . . .

      Liked by 1 person

      • HA! I love that Gunfighter vid! After you shared it the first time, I shared it with some friends of mine who loved it, too! :-D

        Oh, I’ll see the 2nd John Wick…if for no other reason than to look at Keanu.

        Yes, I prefer a story that gets my emotions involved.

        There is A LOT of swearing in Deadwood…especially the use of the F-word. But, it doesn’t bother me and at times I actually find it very funny. I think the characters are GREAT! And I did some research to see what I could find out…and most of the characters were real people who spent time in Deadwood. The creator of the show used Deadwood: The Golden Years by Watson Parker to follow the history of The Black Hills, also, actual diaries and newspapers from 1870s Deadwood residents.

        HUGS!!! :-)

        Liked by 1 person

  4. There are a lot, too many, people prepared to pay to see such garbage as you described, quite well, surprisingly that the money hungry producers/directors of such stuff will just keep churning out more and more for the brain dead clowns who pay to see it!
    Like your pictures of the moon and the bird, getting fed up with the flowers and stuff!

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Heck, I paid to go see it . . . I’ll pay to go see nearly anything where lots of people get shot. I live vicariously so that I don’t have to confront reality.

      As for flowers . . . you’re in for a non-treat . . . either my next post or the one after that is nothing but flowers. Beautiful, glorious, colorful flowers. Enjoy.

      Like

  5. paigeaddams says:

    I love the pictures! :D Especially the moon.

    And uh-oh. Sensitivity readers? Depending on how far they go with that, nothing may ever be published again, lol. There’s something to be offended about in everything, if one looks hard enough.

    And good luck with your writing, and trying to get it out there! I’ve always really liked your stories, so keep pushing! :D Lol, I’ve lost count of my rejections. Now I’ve just said screw it, and am self-publishing. XD

    Like

    • disperser says:

      I always feel weird when I tell people I’m shooting the moon . . . but that’s another story.

      Yeah . . . I’m a bit disheartened with what’s happening, and I don’t mean just in the writing industry. I may not like certain stuff, but that does not mean I would want to curtail its existence. These days, it seems as if everyone has to walk on eggshells lest someone somewhere has an emotional breakdown because they are exposed to something or other.

      As for my writing, I really should get back to it . . . I’ve not written much of anything for a long while now. It seems like months . . . wait, it has been months.

      At some point, I might try the self-publishing route and hope for word-of-mouth to help people find my stuff. Then again, not many people read my stuff here, so my expectations are not all that high.

      Good luck with your self-publishing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • paigeaddams says:

        Lol, very true! I like being respectful of others feelings and opinions, but I feel like we may be losing the ability to laugh at ourselves, or even discuss controversial topics without fear of being labeled one way or another. Whether or not I agree with someone, or appreciate their content (in the case of a novel or maybe a comedy skit or something), being able to hear them out and consider their opinion is valuable, and I can learn from it. Unless they’re a serial killer or something like that, lol.

        And I’m with you! Life has a way of pushing my writing to the back burner – lol, my own laziness also plays a large part. XD I’ll go way too long without writing, and it drives me crazy.

        And thank you, my friend! :D I’m probably equal parts excited and terrified of self-publishing, lol. I feel a lot more confident after hiring my editor, but I still know my stories will not be everyone’s cup of tea. Lol, I’m dreading my first “this book is toilet paper’s sad, unloved cousin… if toilet paper could be digital…” review on Amazon. XD

        And don’t give up! I’m learning a lot about marketing my books myself from my editor – if you do decide to self-publish I can share the things she showed me. :D I’m still learning, but I’m going to be giving free copies of my book to book bloggers in my genre in exchange for an honest review (even if they end up loathing everything about my book, lol), and there’s some things you can sign up for that will offer to sign people up for e-mail notifications when you release new content. She also suggested putting a “call to action” in different places in the e-book. I have samples of my language glossary and the history of the fantasy world I created in the e-book, with a link back to my blog for full versions of those bonus materials. In the call to action, you can offer blog exclusive bonus materials (behind the scenes, character interviews, etc) for your readers. You can also encourage reviews, and getting in touch with you online (through Twitter, Facebook, your blog, etc) in your About the Author page in the e-book.

        Lol, we’ll see how all that goes – right now I’m working on a bunch of bonus material posts leading up to self-publishing towards the end of the month. I’m also cleaning up some of my old story posts to reflect the editing, and trying to organize the categories on my sidebar on my blog a little better.

        Like

      • disperser says:

        Well, crap! . . . that sounds like work. I was hoping some big shot publisher chances across my writing and offers me a thirty-year, multi-tens of dollars contract.

        Seriously, over the years I’ve listened to a lot of podcasts, advice, first-person accounts, and general information in the wonderful world of self-publishing. Read me a few books as well, some making it sound easy, other ripping any hope one might have before stomping on it with iron boots. Still, people do it and for some, it works.

        A strong social network is a must. Exposure on multiple platforms is a must. All the other stuff you mention, as well.

        If I’m honest with myself — and I am — that’s not the path for me. My continuing plan is to submit short stories until I can publish a few and shop a couple of books around until I either die or it is clear to me that immense talent and amazing skill are just not enough . . . even if I had either or both of them.

        I hope all your efforts pay off as you are obviously more focused and dedicated to it than I’m willing to be at the moment. In that, know that the one takeaway I got from everything I’ve read and heard is . . . perseverance. Good luck.

        Like

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