Episode #2 – Our favorite albums & Teenage Zombies!

Here’s our second episode!!! ¬†In it, we continue our getting-to-know-you series by discussing our favorite albums. ¬†We also review & discuss Teenage Zombies in our first ever B-movie review!

[audio https://www.dropbox.com/s/umeinbr0nq9xhum/mlctf%20show2.mp3]

If the stream above doesn’t work, you can download the file here:

MLCTF Show #2

Our B-movie review for next time is “Bigfoot,” a Syfy movie starring one of the Brady kids & one of The Partridge Family! ¬†Oh, and features a guest appearance by Alice Cooper!

Bigfoot – IMDB

Bigfoot – Netflix Stream

Midlife Crisis

I have been thinking a lot lately¬†about the meaning of this. I won’t bore you with the Webster’s definition. Instead, I am going to focus on what this means to me. I think after all the events of last Friday, we all could use a little distraction, even a little humor. I hope can provide this for you.

I am quickly approaching 42. No small feat if I say so myself. 41 plus years of wandering around my little corner of the globe, trying to dissect some meaning out of all of the static out there. It is not easy.  I am finding the world is starting to go a little faster than I am used to. I see how things are geared for the younger generation. ( I am not trying to say I am old, by any means. If there is any luck, I will have a good 30 to 40 years left on this planet ). I am saying however, it is a young persons world. That my friends is the rub. I am finally coming to the realization I am not part of that anymore. I am transisting into the next age group on surveys. I am moving closer to getting an AARP subscription than buying a Playboy. I am becoming part of a demographic that is more concerned with comfort than with making things right. It is scary as hell.

Am I¬†in crisis mode? Maybe. If not a¬†crisis, I am damned close to a frenzy. Things ache that didn’t used to. Parts of my body make noises I don’t¬†recognize. I feel different. I look at things differently. I am a lot closer to 50 than I am 20. Priorities are different. Creativity is gone and replaced by thoughts of mortgages and retirement income.¬†To quote Graham Parker : “My belly’s full, but my soul’s gone dry.”¬†I am not the same person I was at 20. In some ways that is a good thing. In some ways, it’s not. Not that the person I am at 42 is such a great model for society. I am not. I am human. I have hurt people not meaning to and I have been not¬†the most¬†pleasant person. Those things I am working on.

Within all of that however, I do recognize I have the luxury of feeling this way. There are a lot of people who can only worry about day-to-day survival. That is their reality.  Their worries stem from where their next meal is coming from or should they buy medicine for themselves or pay the rent. That is a much harsher reality, I do not face. I am grateful for that. I know how lucky I am and I know that things can always be worse.

So, in the end, I am saying that age happens. It creeps up on you like a turtle on speed. Things seems to be going at a good, slow and steady, then WHAM you are looking and feeling like a port-a-potty at a chili cook off. Shat on and flushed. That my friends is what a midlife crisis feels like.

Your pal,

Lefty

Newtown

Today is a time for us as a nation to come together and to give support and love to the families that are hurting so much in Newtown. There are so many questions that are raised about this¬†tragedy. Some questions need to be raised at a later date. There is so much talk of gun control, mental health and security. Yes these need to be address, but at the appropriate time. There has to be time for grieving and for respect for the victims and their families. This event does not need to be politicized or be turned into some¬†referendum¬†on gun control or religion. There needs to be a human aspect to all of this. Once some opportunistic politician or¬†religious¬†leader creates some sort of “catch phrase” or uses this event to push their own agenda, we as a nation lose sight of what is really important. The 20 victims. They are the focus and should be the focus right now. Please take time today and in the days to come to remember them. Don’t let them get lost in the shuffle of all the debate that is to come.

I want to be able to write something that can give understanding, comfort and answers to the families that lost children and to the families of the adults that were killed. I want to be able to tell them it will be OK and that though the struggles they are going through and they will go through, there will be light again in their lives. However, after seeing the faces of the children and the adults that were taken away too soon, it seems impossible to give that right now. I hope they can find some solace in the days and months to come. 

Take care and if you have kids, give them an extra hug tonight.

Lefty

That’s Entertainment

There’s something I’ve got to get off of my chest. This is a hefty slice of opinion. There may be some language, so you have been warned.

First of all, I acknowledge I’m older and I have a different point-of-view than many most younger people (especially a younger generation). It has to do with the increasing balls-out race to ever more instant gratification.

You see, there was a time when seeking something out and buying it meant something. It meant that you cared enough to go out (and sometimes out of your way) to seek the thing out and get it. You could hold it in your hand. A tangible link to the thing you wanted. A record, a CD, a video tape, a DVD… these were the things that provided a connectedness to the media we wanted. It also meant that you could use that media wherever you had a player to enjoy to your heart’s content at your player’s ability.

I’m the oldest person in my department where I work. I hear many of the under-30 co-workers talking about how they only watch stuff they can get on Netflix or Amazon Prime or Hulu or other services and do not buy any physical thing. This, to me, is shocking. I feel like they are buying into the knee-jerk reaction to piracy that the studios and distributors are clamouring toward which is digital distribution through almost any means available. This is part of the bipolar response the media industry has been dishing out. “Don’t copy the DVD!”¬†“Oh my God! media sales have taken a hit!” “OK, you can make a copy, but you have to buy this special license first.” “Oh, OK, we’ll stream it on service X.” The complain about bad sales while they encourage the discounting of their work and complain about their losses and expenses while still raking in quite a lot of money.

OK, got a little off topic there, but here it comes: This wave of instant gratification is turning entertainment works music, movies and books into a disposable commodity. There, I said it. I’ve heard time and again people complaining about going to a store to get something. Or even just buying something and having to wait for it to arrive or to have to store it. This makes me want to bitch-slap all of these people. There’s a certain ring of “I don’t give a shit” to this attitude. The fact that they don’t care about having it, to me, means that they really don’t deserve it. Why? Simply because they don’t care. These are the same people who watch most movies or listen to most music or read most books while doing something else. We as a people and as a culture are losing the simple joy of being in the moment. What’s next? Tweeting your orgasm as you have it?

What’s the point of having an entertainment industry in the first place when, thanks to the internet and people who can’t take more than five minutes of concentration at a time; everyone, everywhere is now a “star”. Andy Warhol’s statement has now become a fact. And thanks to the internet, this is part of my fifteen minutes. Look, I enjoy cat videos and podcasts just like everyone else. But I also love movies, music and books. And, like any good love relationship, I nurture it with devoted time. I like to think I have a bit of balance with this. So it’s unnerving when more and more brick-and-mortar stores cut back more and more on media. Business is cutthroat– I get that. When things don’t sell, you have to cut back– I get that too. It just saddens me when it looks like it’s happening on a broader and broader scale.

Don’t believe me? Take a look at Best Buy. For years I went to them almost exclusively because they carried the DVDs I wanted and were comparable to online prices once you factored in shipping. Look at them now. In the past five years they’ve been getting rid of more and more stocks of media and trying to hawk more big-ticket items like TV’s or major sound systems. I think that it was a gamble that wasn’t going to pay off. The whole thing just seemed out-of-balance.

So, what is the point of all of this rambling? Simply to remind you that you probably love your music, books and movies. Show your love by buying a copy of your media for your personal use. Yes, I mean an actual physical thing– not some intangible idea of a thing that some third party is monitoring (DON’T get me started!); and sit back in a quiet space and ENJOY it. Be in that moment. Show your love.

And remember, when you get your entertainment from a third-party gateway, that access can be changed or turned off. Oh, and you don’t need fresh batteries for a physical book.

That’s my two cents.

End opinionated rant.

Rando!

Lefty here

I thought I should put down a few words to thank all of our listeners so far! We are having a blast doing this show and we want to keep on doing it. All of the encouraging words we are receving have helped a lot!

As you guys know, the holidays are fast approaching and with it comes thoughts of family and fun and friends. I hope you guys all have a safe and happy holiday.

Now enough of the sappy stuff, let’s get down to the real deal here. My rant for today! Today this humble blogger wants to tackle something that has been bothering me for a long time: Political Correctness. This kill joy has infected our society and culture for far too long. People today are just too sensitive for their own good. Everyone wants to be taken seriously and be counted. That is fine, but in the process, if you make an ass out of yourself, don’t be mad if someone points that out. ¬†I am not advocating hate speech or anything of that sort, I want to make that clear. I just want us as a society to get our sense of humor back. One cannot say anything in this age without worrying about offending group “A” or group “B”. Everyone gets their panties in a knot if just one thing is out of place or if someone doesn’t agree¬†with this “perfect” image everyone has of themselves.

I think as a society, we just need to get over ourselves.¬†Relax and laugh a little. It isn’t gooing to hurt. ¬†Have a good laugh at yourself or your cultural group. We all have things that are silly in our lives and it is funny to point them out and have a laugh at them.¬†Lighten up people! Don’t get so hung up on the little stuff, that you miss the¬†bigger picture. ¬†We are not on this planet very long, so lets not try to take ourselves too seriously, ok? This doesn’t mean being hateful. There is enough hate in this world as it is. There is always room for humour however.¬†

So just keep that in mind this season when you are out with your friends or family. Have a good laugh, don’t hurt anyone and enjoy your life. We only get one turn on this planet, make sure you make it a good one.

Take care!
Lefty

Hello, Internet!

Perfect first-post title for a programmer-nerd, eh?

Rando, here! Just doing some setup. This is to introduce a Taskforce Members category for our personal musings and rants.

For instance, I’m typing this while listening to the classic Rankin Bass’ Rodolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. I always enjoyed it, but now, while listening to the beginning, it seems that Santa is a complete jerk.

And on a completely separate topic, I’ve been watching the classic anime Crest of the Stars. I hadn’t seen it in years which is sad because: a) I own it on DVD, and b) it’s amazingly good! It is a Bandai title and will probably be out-of-print leaving stores and internet retailers left with stock-on-hand. It’s an epic space opera based on a series of novels which were very popular.

Crest of the Stars is the story about a princess of the genetically engineered race Abh and how she becomes a close friend of a count from planet Martine. It’s worth noting that the Abh had previously conquered Martine and the boy is only a count due to his late father’s position in the planet’s government… It’s a long story, but so worth your time, so get it while you can. Oh, and I’m probably going to stir up trouble, but watch it subtitled. The original Japanese language track is best!

Check out the trailer.

Rando!

Welcome to our podcast!!!

The Mid-Life Crisis Taskforce welcomes you to our first podcast!!

We’re three guys who have been friends for almost 25 years.¬† As we enter middle age, we thought it might be fun to break out of our ruts and start a podcast!¬† Not entirely sure what direction we’re going to take this yet.¬† Expect us to focus on music, movies, geekdom, & pop culture.¬† Oh, and bad movies.¬† Lots of bad movies.

Anyway, here’s the link to our first episode!¬† We’re still going throw some growing pains, but we hope you enjoy it and come back again!

Mid Life Crisis Taskforce Episode 1

Our first B-Movie Review will be Teenage Zombies, directed by Jerry Warren.¬† If you’re a fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000 or Rifftrax, you’ll know Jerry as the auteur behind such classics as The Wild World of Batwoman and Frankenstein Island.