Feb 15 2013

House of Cards

houseofcards

In short Netflix’s new series is a winner. If Netflix truly wants to be a player in TV with original programming then they need more shows like this (and the upcoming Arrested Development).

House of Cards is the story of power and the exercise thereof, and it hits all the right notes. Kevin Spacey is perfect as the manipulative Congressman from South Carolina Francis Underwood, and acclaimed director David Fincher sets the tone for the series by directing the first two incredible episodes. If power corrupts then House of Cards is an insider look into the corruption that greases the wheels of government here in DC. What a particular Senator or Congressman believes is irrelevant. What they have said or supported in the past also irrelevant. What is important is using your influence to gain power. After living in DC for the last almost 4 years, and after watching the last two successive administrations equivocate, back-peddle and straight-up contradict statements made only moments before, House of Cards, at times, felt like a documentary on seedy underbelly that is DC. There is no one to root for and everyone is tainted with greed, lies, and corruption. You watch to see whose power plays will eventually be  successful and who will be ruined.

House of Cards shows that original programming can work for companies like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon.Just like anything else, if you can get a talented group of people and allow them to flourish and tell stories, then you don’t need to be part of the network/cable conglomerate. I have to think that this shows success–depending on how Netflix gauges success–will hopefully open more avenues for these types of shows.

A few questions remain however:

What is considered successful?

How will this success translate into money to continue making original programming?

Will other actors, producers, writers, directors, etc. be drawing to these venues to tell stories?

Does this change the dynamic between traditional TV networks and streaming services?

I’m not sure what the answers to these questions are but it is going to be interesting these next few years as digital providers vie for more content and more power to give their consumers what they want when they want it. Now stop reading and get to watching House of Cards. You won’t be disappointed.

 

Jan 10 2013

RGIII & Strasburg

Sitting on my couch last weekend, it was readily apparent that RGIII was hurting. After a couple quick scores in the first quarter he spent the rest of the game hobbling and limping his way around the field, valiantly trying put his team on his shoulders until this happened:

original-6

It was painful enough watching him hobble around the field for most of the game but that ankle/knee disaster is rough to watch. Even more so learning about all the drama surrounding his knee. It had come out earlier in the day that Shanahan had lied about RGIII being cleared to play the prior week by team orthopedic Dr. Andrews. The fact that he was never even given any type of physical assessment seems negligent at best. Here’s a potential franchise player that could make the Washington Football Club serious contenders for years to come, and the team treats his long-term health as secondary to the short-term glory of winning a playoff game. Also this is but one example of the machismo that permeates professional football. If you’re a man you’ll go out and play despite whatever little pussy injuries you think may have. This is one of the reasons why football players are developing dementia at 40. Congrats! (Contrast this with the push-back in baseball over the last couple years regarding collisions at home plate. You have had everyone from writers to managers talking about how dumb home plate collisions are. There’s nothing manly about taking one for the team and being subsequently injured for the rest of the season.) This whole incident made me think of the Strasburg saga that took DC by storm last September, and appreciate a bit more what the Nationals did.

There’s many arguments that can be made about how the Nationals used Strasburg throughout the year (other options included using him in the pen for the first few months, starting his season in May instead of April, or skipping starts throughout the year to keep his innings limit down) and the arbitrary innings limit–160 instead of 170 or 180 etc–but there’s virtually no argument to be made about their vision for the team. The Nats decided that they would prefer to be contenders for the World Series for the next 4-5 seasons while they still have their core in place rather than push their star in his first season back from TJ surgery. As it is they came 1 strike away from winning the NLDS without Strasburg and the NL East will be significantly weaker this year (Mets still suck, Marlins rebuilding, Phils 1 year older, Braves still good). The Nationals now have both Strasburg and Zimmermann, not to mention a hopefully healthy and effective Haren, fully healed and ready to lead the rotation. Add in the rest of their core and they could win the division or qualify for a wild-card 3-4 times in the next 5 years. That’s a long-term vision for making your franchise viable. It’s something that the best franchises in sports are good at. Then you have the Washington Football Club, which always seems to make decisions in the hopes of some short-term success and viability mostly to their detriment.

Things are looking up for the team that actually plays their games in DC. How many days until pitchers and catchers again?

RGIII gif via fansided.com

 

Jan 6 2013

Washington v. Washington

In just a few hours the Washington Football Club will host the Seattle Seahawks from the other Washington place. Both teams are named after ole George Washington the father of our country. So naturally the question is, if GW was alive which team would he be rooting for. In order to find out I went to a local medium contacted the man himself. What follows is the transcript of our conversation and his thoughts on the two teams named after him.

Perpetual Memory Loss: First question Mr. President, Washington, DC or Washington State?

George Washington:  Washington State? Where is this place and why would they name a state Washington when the district has already been bequeathed that name?

PML: Ummm It’s all the way on the other side of the continent sir, and I think they wanted to just honor you.

GW: Sounds like they are the worst sort of flatterers, like Jefferson. Why not give the state another name. I am sure they were many worthy people to name it after. Why not a Hamilton, Lafayette, or Franklin?

PML: Not sure why not but I think Washington just has a nice sound to it sir.

GW: I don’t like flatterers.

PML: Ok that’s one for the District. Next question sir, Redskins or Seahawks?

GW: What be this Seahawk?

PML: It’s a type of Osprey.

GW: Ahhh I see fearsome birds, terribly fearsome, but in the end they’re only a bird and the noble savage is quite the hunter.

PML: Ehh well we don’t call them savages anymore sir.

GW: Then what do you call them then just Redskins?

PML:  No neither, they are Native Americans.

GW: That doesn’t make any sense.

PML: Yah I know, we do a lot of things like that.

GW: Well I still don’t think those birds have any chance. Those sava… Native Americans were without ruth.

PML: Ok one more for the District, last question sir

GW: Good this is wearisome and I want to get back and kick Jefferson right in the baby maker.

PML: Hah well give him one from me too sir. Ok so like I said, last question, RGIII or Russell Wilson?

GW: What’s an RGIII?

PML: He’s the quarterback for the District’s team. It stands for Robert Griffin, III.

GW: What’s a quarterback?

PML: He’s the leader and one of the most important members of a football team.

GW: Football? You mean this is that dreadfully boring British sport? I thought we got rid of all their customs?

PML: Oh no never, no one here watches that sport, it’s a different sport entirely.

GW: Good. I like the sound of this Russell Wilson. He sounds like a nice, well-behaved English boy.

PML: Uh yeh pretty much. Ok well then thanks for your time sir, and don’t forget to give that ginger Jefferson a kick in the sack from me.

GW: Will do nice conversing with you good sir.

By a score of 2-1 the father of our country picks the team that hails from Washington, DC. We’ll know in a few short hours if he was right.

 

Dec 30 2012

Best Of 2012

Best Novel:  This is a tough one. I read a lot of great novels this year, some good ones, and a couple terrible ones. I thoroughly enjoyed IQ84 and that was probably my top pick for almost the entire year. Nothing measured up to it, and still doesn’t in some ways. However, my top pick is Storm of Swords which was an incredibly riveting, fun page turner.

Best History Book:

Although not released this year, I finally got around to reading Eric Foner’s The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery and it was a fantastic read. Lincoln’s been every where these last few years, but Foner’s monograph on Lincoln’s views of slavery and how they evolved over his life is a fascinating and easily accessible read. Well researched and written this book is a must read for anyone who wants to have a fuller understanding of Lincoln and why he is still such an important figure in American History.

Best Comic Book/Series: 

This year was another good year for comics. There were quite a few good series/story-lines this year. There were also some abysmal ones (I’m looking at you AvX). I was expecting to hate DC’s Before Watchmen prequel but I have thoroughly enjoyed them and look forward to buying the forthcoming compendium. Also, I need to stop putting too much stock into what Alan Moore says.

Best Movie:

This is a tough choice for me. I found myself going to the movies more this year than I have in probably a decade (yikes!). Despite loving LincolnArgo, The Dark Knight Rises, and The Hobbit and thoroughly enjoying other movies like Skyfall my top pick this year is The AvengersThe Avengers was the culmination of years of movies and it had a lot riding on it. If The Avengers failed then Marvel’s strategy of making independent films i.e. Iron Man, Thor, that lead to one grand movie would be considered a failure despite individual successes. The Avengers though was easily the best comic book, comic book movie yet. It was big, crazy, over-the-top, filled with memorable moments and most of all a shit-ton of fun to watch and enjoy. It probably won’t win any Oscars, but The Avengers was the most enjoyable and it ensures we get to see what Marvel has planned for the next phase of  their plan.

Best TV Show:

This year nothing came close to Game of Thrones on TV. While 2012 was a great year of TV with Breaking BadParks & Recs, Boardwalk Empire, and Louie all having a fantastic season, GOT was just a cut above the rest. The show had it all: witty dialogue, epic battles, political intrigue, boobs, and terrific characters. The Battle of Blackwater was one of the best episodes of TV and was worth all the build-up. I fully expect next season will be even better.

Best Game:

This year I spent loads of time questing throughout the world of Skyrim, but despite that my best game of the year is Halo 4. I don’t think anyone knew what to expect when Bungie left the Halo franchise in the hands of Microsoft, but 343 Studios put out easily one the best Halo games since the original. The graphics are the best yet, the story-line ranks near the top, and for me the online play is the best yet. 343 absolutely killed the online portion of Halo by creating better match-up balance, adding Spartan Ops, and creating a system that makes you want to keep playing and progressing. All in all Halo is a helluva lot of fun and I plan to keep playing as long as they keep adding new modes and maps.

Best Album:

My favorite album this year was Kendrick Lamar’s good kid, m.A.A.d. city. This is an album that is begging to be listened to over and over. Detailing a day-in-the-life of a day in Compton the overarching theme that runs throughout the album plus, the fantastic rhymes, and the immanently catchy hooks makes this album not only one of the best of the year, but a rap classic destined to be named among some of the top rap albums ever. Do yourself a favor and pick-up a copy.

Best Gadget: 

The new windows phone in the form of a Nokia Lumia. I have been looking to get rid of my iphone for over a year, but I was resolute in waiting to see what the new Windows Phone looked like before I made my choice between Android, Apple, or Microsoft. In the end Microsoft won out and I couldn’t be happier. The Lumia is a well made device, with a beautiful display that combined with Windows 8 makes a phone that is unique, extremely customizable, and functional. If you’re looking for something new, give the Windows Phone a try.

 

Sep 29 2012

Raiders of the Lost Ark in IMAX

Earlier this month, before my sojourn to Spain, Pheebs and I had a chance to check out Raiders of the Lost Ark in IMAX. I don’t remember seeing Raiders in theaters when I was a kid, so with this opportunity I made sure to make the time to go see Indie in all his IMAX glory.

After my initial nerdgasm I started to wonder about how a 30+ year old movie gets converted into IMAX, a technology that didn’t even exist at the time. Then I began to worry that one of my favorite movies was about to get ruined and that instead of Nazis there would be just random non-controversial villains, and that all guns would be digitally removed and replaced with bananas.

I’m happy to say that none of that is true. The asshole Nazis are still there, and Indy still shoots homeboy with the sword, then saunters off like Han Solo. The quality of the transfer I would put at a 4.5 out of 5. The only problem is within the first 10 minutes there were a few of the faces do a little Roger Rabbit buggly eyes but although it’s noticeable it’s fairly quick and not terrible. However, by the time the boulder starts rolling until the end credits I didn’t see anything that was weird, and I was completely swept away by the movie. Much more so than many modern films. So perhaps the first few minutes was just a bad transfer, or a problem with that particular reel.

This movie though is still one of the best, funnest movies around. Even though I know the whole thing forwards and backwards it is still a joy to watch over IMAX. Especially, the sequence where Indy fights the Nazi near the plane and subsequently goes after the truck that is carrying the ark. The truck scene is one of my all-time favorite scenes and is what every action movie should aspire to. For me that scene alone was worth the price of admission. I can’t wait to get my Indy blu-ray set and look forward to watching all three again in glorious blu-ray.

For more on Indy in IMAX check out our last episode of fivebeersin (last ten minutes), and our next episode will have even more about our individual Indy in IMAX experiences.

 

Sep 9 2012

Woof

The other day I checked out this site thinking that my last post was only a couple of months ago, and I was surprised that it had been over 6 months. Where does the time go? Anyways the time away has been well spent as I have been busy with my new project Five Beers In, so if you have some time check it out. More to come soon.

 

Feb 23 2012

1Q84

I finished Haruki Murakami’s new novel 1Q84 a few weeks ago and I have been letting it settle in my brain for a while before I wrote about it. Clocking in at over 950 pages, 1Q84 will take time to read. Luckily, it is time well spent and it is a thoroughly enjoyable story. 1Q84 takes place is a Tokyo in 1984 and follows the lives of the two protagonists, Aomame and Tengo. Murakami alternates the chapters between Aomame and Tengo. Their stories are intertwined although the reader is unsure how or even why. Like Murakami’s other books, this book could be categorized as magical realism. (If you are not acquainted with that term think about books/stories like The Metamorphosis, Beloved, The Master and Margarita, and The Alchemist. These are story’s that take place in the real world, our world, but yet are intruded upon by the supernatural (Beloved and The Master and Margarita), unexplained events (The Metamorphosis), or with the bending, merging of realities (1Q84).) For some people this isn’t their cup of tea, but I find that books of this ilk can be both incredibly entertaining and packed with meaning.

Tengo is a typical Murakami male character and almost a stereotype of a Japanese male: introspective, honorable, and taciturn. (In some ways he is very similar to Toru Okada from The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.) Tengo, like Toru, is a lackluster 30 year old who has enormous potential (he’s a brilliant mathematician, martial artist, writer, and pretty much anything he puts his mind to) but yet hasn’t quite found his niche in the world. He teaches math part-time and in the other time he is an aspiring novelist. At both he excels but not too much, and he seems content to just slog along in his life. Aomame, on the other hand, has her life mostly figured out. She’s a physical trainer at a high-class Tokyo gym and in her spare time assassinates men who have repeatedly and harshly beaten their wives. For the most part she likes her life and she is very good at her chosen professions.

For the first few hundred pages Murakami is content to let the reader get to know the various characters, and slowly but surely set up the story. Very early on the reality between 1984 and 1Q84 become inter-meshed and you spend large swaths of time, like the characters, not sure which reality is which. The story lines come crashing together, however, around the end of the second book, about 600 pages in, and before that you are left to wonder how these people are connected. But by the end of the second book many questions are answered (although there are still a lot of loose ends, more on that later). In the third book Murakami adds another character to the book, the tenacious and vile Ushikawa. Alternating between the three, the book alters slightly is style from the previous two, as Ushikawa is investigating Tengo and Aomame trying to find out what we already know. All while Aomame and Tengo are trying to find resolution for their prior actions before Ushikawa can find them.

That’s about as much into the plot I can get without giving out any significant spoilers. Throughout the book though Murakami touches on a number of themes, but for me the major themes were: the negative effects of religion on people (I take it as religion as a whole while others think just he’s only speaking about cults, but in reality the only difference between cults and religions is popularity and societal acceptance), relationships (father-son and family-friends), and love.  It took me about a month to read this book (around two hours a day on my commute to and from work) and that it was a very enjoyable time. I loved the story line, the characters, and being immersed in this world. Then again I like long books. Especially, if the authors are good about keeping the story going and not dragging it along. This book is a prime example of how to do that. I was never bored or skipped forward and I actually missed my stop on the train a few times because I was so immersed. As I mentioned above the story ends with some loose ends, which I think is fine because the major questions are resolved, but if you like every little story line explained in full and wrapped up with a little bow, then well you might get agitated at the end.

Lastly, I checked this book out on my kindle but there was no way I’d finish it in 3 weeks so I turned off my WiFi and was able to make it to the end. So if you have a kindle and ever check out a book on it just turn off your WiFi and you won’t have to worry about the book disappearing before you’re done.

 

Feb 11 2012

The Art Of Coffee

Coffee. There is really nothing better than a good cup of coffee first thing in the morning. Unfortunately, most mornings I have to work and that means that I have to take what I can get at work (commuting via public trans makes it far too troublesome to stop at a Starbucks, Dunkin, or anywhere else). That means I should be enjoying my most enjoyable cups of coffee on the weekends. For years, however, I have been drinking regular ass drip coffee from a cheap Mr. Coffee I got from Wal-Mart. What I get from it is technically coffee but it has always tasted burnt and well not that great. It usually needed some type of creamer to give it a desirable flavor. As of late I’ve decided that trend had to stop so I spent the last few months researching coffee makers, beans, grinders, etc in search of making a great, fairly quick cup of coffee. Now after two months with my new method I can say with confidence that coffee aficionados should check it out (if they haven’t already).

Although at some point I will eventually get and aeropress or a french press for now I am sticking with my clever coffee dripper from Sweet Maria’s (or amazon). I settled on this brand because it combines the ease of a drip coffee machine with the taste and flexibility of a french press or aeropress and with an extremely quick and easy clean-up. How does it work?

It works much like a regular drip coffee maker, insert a #4 filter, rinse filter to get paper particles out, then dump in you coffee grounds:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next pour in your hot/boiling water:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then you stir the grounds at about the 1 minute and 4 minute mark. Then you take your clever coffee dripper and place it on your mug like so:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first few times will be awkward and uneven as you search for the proper ratios of water and beans, but once you figure it out the process becomes routine and almost zen like. This is part of what appeals to me about this method of coffee-making. Making it first thing in the morning and using these exacting methods appeals to my personality and is a good way to start my mornings. Once I got it done I am able to make a cup in 10 minutes or less and when it’s done I know that I can look forward to an outstanding cup of coffee.  It’s smooth, bold with no (or rarely ever any) grains. Best of all I have yet to taste a cup that has even the slightest tinge of tasting burnt or bitter. Now of course this only works well if you need to make a cup or two at a time. If you are making coffee for 12 people every morning this isn’t really the method for you but neither are many others. This method is flexible enough though to make two cups rather quickly. For optimal coffee brewing I recommend grinding your own beans using a conical burr grinder. I use the Capresso Infinity which has been working fantastically for me. Clean-up takes a bit of an effort it’s not terrible. All told cleaning up the grinder and the dripper takes less than 5 minutes (although I recommend buying a real brush to clean-up the grinder as the one provided with it is anemic). Also some type of vacuum storage container should be used to store beans. The whole set up looks like this:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One other piece you will need is a kettle, and I use a glass kettle with purified water, which ensures that my water is clean and doesn’t take on a metallic taste that often happens with metal kettles. If you’re interested here are a few coffee resources that will help you in your search for a better cup of joe.

Gimme Coffee! 

Whole Latte Love

Coffee Geek

Sweet Maria’s

 

 

Jan 9 2012

Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine, and the Murder of a President

Today for the first time ever on PML we are having a guest post (hold the applause). Here now is the debut from my partner in blogging, Pheebs. Although this is the first time, hopefully it won’t be the last.

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I recently was lucky enough to catch the tail end of a radio news broadcast interviewing author Candice Millard. She was speaking about her new book entitled, Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine, and the Murder of a President. (Hereafter referred to as DOR for my sanity.) My curiosity got the better of me and I added this read to my Christmas wish list — and I have to say it was one of the best presents I received this year. In DOR is a seamlessly woven tale of three men – an assassin, a president, and an inventor – whose paths cross just long enough to change the course of US history.

Even most history buffs can’t really tell you much about the 20th president of the United States, James Garfield. He is often lumped together with his “Gilded Age” contemporaries  — the “forgettable” presidents. Most ordinary Americans (myself previously included) might have an image of him sipping brandy out of a golden goblet with bff’s Johnny Rockefeller and JJ Astor. However, I learned from DOR that the exact opposite is true. The last US President to be born in a legit log cabin, Garfield came from abject poverty and a single mother household. His mom was a pretty wise lady and beyond the completely admirable feat of hacking it alone in that log cabin, she instilled Garfield with a love of learning. An overzealous reader and all around nerd (he knew Virgil’s Aeneid by heart…oh yeah, in English AND LATIN) Garfield put his way through school by working as the institution’s janitor. From the very start of her book Millard paints Garfield as a guy to respect  — a humble book lover who works his way up from that janitor to the university’s president. I was amazed by the man’s versatility as well. Garfield not only pursued a career in academics, but dabbled in law, was nominated to congress, fought as a general on the side of the Union in the Civil War (he was adamantly anti-slavery) and even spent some time working on the Erie and Ohio canal. Talk about a résumé. It’s clear that Millard admires the heck out of the guy, and one of the best things about the book is that it’s incredibly difficult not to join her as a Garfield groupie.

Yet the thing that Millard makes quite clear is that Garfield was never particularly ambitious for the limelight and certainly never cutthroat. One of Millard’s most triumphant moments is her description of how the guy (somewhat comically) accidentally became nominated as a United States president. I read this book at quite a timely moment, feeling a powerful sense of déjà vu as Millard paints the crazy riot that was the 1880 Republican National Convention. Millard reminds readers that merely 15 years had passed since the end of the Civil War and even Lincoln’s grand old party had powerful factions. (think Tea Partiers VS Mitt Romney Repubs….. but more so) Garfield’s appearance was meant to be simply a small part of the circus, as he was scheduled to introduce candidate John Sherman to the raucous and sharply divided mob that gathered in Chicago. What Sherman didn’t count on was how eloquent Garfield really was. So the man stands up to introduce Sherman, and his speech is so good that the crowd starts screaming “we want Garfield!” Garfield, shocked and horrified by this turn of events is left wondering how exactly he ends up getting nominated (and subsequently elected) to the highest office in the land. What Millard makes clear in her re-telling, is that Garfield never intended or even wanted to be President.  I found this one of the best things about Garfield. In contrast to a modern political atmosphere where ambition and a killer ego is needed for a presidential run, Garfield simply seemed to see it as his duty to serve the people who were so inspired by him.

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Jan 7 2012

Kindle Fire Review

For the last few months I have been debating whether to get an iPad or a Kindle Fire. The debate was between the price of an iPad and the deficiencies of the Fire (when compared to an iPad). Before I was able to decide, however, I received a Fire for winter solstice celebration (aka xmas). So I’ve had it now for about 2-3 weeks, and in that time I’ve used it extensively.

Maybe it’s because it’s new and different but I really like the carousel on the Fire. I have found Apple’s iOS to be getting bland and boring, but that has accelerated since I started using the Fire. (As a quick aside I think the Apple iOS needs a dramatic over haul stat). Maybe it’s just the way I like to categorize things or the way my brain works but I enjoy how the carousel breaks up the various different media sources (newsstand, music, video, web, apps etc) and then has a favorites and recently used section.

As a media consumer the Fire is outstanding. It has completely replaced my laptop when it comes to reading news, surfing the web, watching videos, reading books, comics, listening to music etc.  Speaking of reading books, everything that I wish my Kindle reader had the Fire does. For instance, the ability to google and wikipedia words terms etc. (Amazon’s whispersync technology also is a big plus and works great when I switch between my reader and my Fire.) But I’ve always preferred the Kindle reader to iBooks. If there is one thing that amazon does better that’s it. I find iBooks to be slow and clunky but the Kindle app is like butter. Throw in the ability to check out books from the local library with Kindle and Amazon Primes new book rent service and I’m sold. The Fire’s native browser Silk works quickly and smoothly. It’s really fast for me and works better when you turn off flash. Is it faster and better than Safari? I don’t know I haven’t busted out my stopwatch to check, nor do I really care. Both my iPhone and my Fire load up pages quickly on WiFi. The problem I have on both is the same–advertisements on non-mobile websites. Need an app like ad blocker for Silk (if someone knows of one let me know as I haven’t been able to find one). Other than that I’m liking it and as more websites on going to HTML 5 (thank you Apple) I find less and less websites where you need flash to view them.

For reading comics the Kindle has been fantastic. In conjunction with my box.net account I can download comics as I need them. Unfortunately, there’s no native .cbr reader on the Fire so you have to buy one (there’s no free comic readers either) but $3 for a reader in the long run in not a bad deal.  Videos from amazon and netflix load quickly and run smoothly, and the shape of the Fire is conducive to watching videos, but more on that later. Music on the Fire works well also. Pandora works flawlessly and Amazon (like Apple) provides 5GB of free space that allows me to upload most of my favorite music to the cloud and access it from anywhere–including work since I can access it from the web and don’t need to install any new programs on my work computer (which I like others can’t do). Also if I want 20gb of space it’s cheaper on Amazon ($20) than it is on Apple ($40). In this day and age that extra 20 per year is a lot.

Now the Fire is smaller in size than the iPad and this is good and bad. Good because it’s very comfortable to hold in my lap or one-handed whilst laying on the couch. It’s the perfect proportion for widescreen movies and TV shows and also retains the feel of a book when held upright. It feels less unwieldy or more normal than an iPad. On the negative side it’s smaller and that sucks especially when not every app includes a pinch-to-zoom feature (I’m looking at you comic reader, fix that shit stat). However, I still feel, like the iPad, that it’s a bit weird typing on it. For that reason, I only use it for writing short emails or blogs. For now, my laptop is safe.

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