Friday, November 30, 2012

Apple, Still Going Out Of Business Better Than Ever


From October 2011 through September 2012, the combined net profit of Microsoft, Google, eBay, Yahoo, Facebook and Amazon was $34.4 billion.

Apple, in the same period, made $7 billion more IN PROFIT.

From October 2011 through September 2012, Apple's biggest industry competitors and associates; Dell, Asus, Intel, Acer, IBM, Lenovo and HP made $19.3 billion in profits.

Apple, in the same period, made roughly $22 billion more IN PROFIT.

The odd part is … Apple announced that their profit was below market expectations - the stock has taken a 70 point hit!

Meanwhile, HP announces massive layoffs.

Apple, on the other hand, is hiring and growing their payrolls by around 100 a week.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Movie Review: Cloud Atlas


I'm reviewing this movie a bit late to see it in movie theaters but the review will stand for a home video release. I wanted to make sure I saw this for the visuals on the big screen with great audio.

I really don't know how to review this movie … I've had a hard time figuring out if it was good or bad.

I certainly know that there are elements I really liked (Hugo Weaving) and elements I didn't like (unnecessary nudity and cursing).

The movie (and I presume, the book) follows the lives of 6 people at different time periods and how their stories are connected - even  though they really aren't.

Through the discovery of diaries, memoirs, and published works from the various characters - The movie switches between a story from the 1800's that follows a young Lord traveling to America to take part in his fiance's family slave trade to a 1930's composer discovering the memoirs of the Lord's travels to the 1970's with a reporter uncovering a scandal that inadvertently discovers love letters from the '30's composer to a future where a clone rises up to expose a horrific truth about existence to a post-apocalyptic world where some are far advanced and others are barbarians.

The plot borrows elements from so many stories and lacks overall originality.

Some visuals are stunning. Some of the acting is incredible as each "star" plays six or more roles in the film through different subplots.

Hugo Weaving as Smoke - The Devil
As always, Tom Hanks plays an excellent geek and weirdo, but the star of the film is Hugo Weaving in a portrayal of the Devil. He's truly terrifying and very original. While some portrayals are top notch, the actors and actresses in different makeups at times (throughout time) are very confusing.

I would rate Cloud Atlas (2 out of 5)

I'm not sure if the book is better, but it would seem that it couldn't be and might be even more confusing than the movie was. 

I'm also leery of one theme … that there are no heroes - we simply slip into slavery and servitude and the heroes matter not because we will soon slip again.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Recipe: Organized Joe


Sometimes our children won't eat food because it's so "blah" looking …

I've found that if I present the food in a unique way, my son is much more likely to not just try it, but like it ~ even if it's the same food I've always served.

The following is a way to make a healthy Sloppy Joe meal and organize it into a Bento Box.

This meal can also provide a small amount of dinner conversation and education …
Bento (弁当 bentō?)[1] is a single-portion takeout or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine. 
A traditional bento consists of rice, fish or meat, and one or more pickled or cooked vegetables, usually in a box-shaped container.
If you'd like to know more about Bento meals & Bento boxes, see: http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bento 

CLICK FOR LARGER, PRINTABLE VIEW

Organized Joe
Cost $13 / Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

(1) 1 pound 85% Lean Ground Turkey

(1) package frozen fajita blend peppers & onions

(1) package frozen chopped onions

(1) can sloppy joe sauce

(1) package of whole wheatslider buns

(1) block extra sharp cheese

(1) package 3 color deli slaw

mayonnaise

soy sauce

pickles

potato chips

Extras to consider: 

Bento boxes  … these may be hard to come by so I went to my local office store and bought two office drawer organizers for $2.99.

Chopsticks … easy to find at your local Chinese/Japanese restaurant or your local grocery store for free, just pick up some extras next time you eat out.

Edamame … these are unshelled soybeans. Vey high in protein and a great way to get kids to have a tasty protein.

Miso paste/Seaweed/Mushrooms/Tofu or Miso soup mix … this is good to have as a side soup or even a drink.

Special mayo: I mix a tiny bit miso, horseradish, soy sauce, and paprika into mayonnaise to make a special Spicy Misonaise.

Ambience … Oriental themes, candles. Don't go overboard, but a simple well placed table setting can go a long way to selling the novelty of this meal.

Instructions:

Brown ground turkey. Drain

Add (1) can "sloppy joe" sauce / follow directions on can

Chop & add frozen peppers to your liking

Add frozen onions to your liking

I mix the ingredients for the Misonaise (mentioned above) and put it as the "mayo" in my cole slaw and for organized joe ingredient.

Lightly toast slider buns in oven or toaster.

Sandwiches are assembled with sloppy joe mix, pickles, cheese, misonaise

Place ingredients (sloppy joe ingredients, chips, slaw, edmame) separately into organized compartments of the bento box (or poor man's bento box = drawer organizer).

Chopsticks may end up being more for decoration or novelty.