Archive for the Big Dog Category

Book Review: The Elves of Cintra (Genesis of Shannara, Book 2)

Posted in Big Dog on Wednesday, July 22 by KevinLHinton

 

This is an awesome middle book of a trilogy. Middle books are hard to read sometimes, because you know you will not reach any ultimate conclusion, and it isn’t as exciting as the first book where you are learning about the author’s world and characters. But this is more like GodFather II and leaving severed horse heads in your bed. Bad ass.

I thought this one was better than the first, and I am amped to read the 3rd, which I will buy on my way home today. If you have not read the Shannara series, get on board. Terry Brooks wrote the original like 30 years ago, and as I said, it is a standard LOTR plot. Then he continued that saga in a standard fantasy world with multiple more novels – all good.

He then did a prequil to the series, that is based in our world. That trilogy is supposed to be very good, but I haven’t read it.

This trilogy connects the other two worlds – our world, and the fantasy world. It is the story of how we got there, and it is awesome. I think what I like so much about it is that I thought it would be terrible. I bought the first book in the airport, and given that it is about the 17th Shannara series novel, my expectations were low.

Anyways, something about Knights of the Word, Demons, Elves, and a bunch of other shit battling it out in the Pacific Northwest when the world is on the brink of a haulocaust is pretty badass. Parker – the elves end up summiting Mount Raineer in this one, and have to do some ice climbing on their way up. I think they used your route – you should compare notes.

Honestly – I think you could easily read and enjoy this trilogy on its own without delving into the other series. But I would recommend just reading Sword of Shannara first, as it is a fantasy classic and you will enjoy it.

It might be kind of cool to start with the prequil though, then do this series, then do the Shannara stuff and see what it is like all in order.

Easiness to read = 9. Enjoyment = 8.

This is good shit, get on board.

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Book Review: Sword of Shannarah by Terry Brooks

Posted in Big Dog on Saturday, June 6 by KevinLHinton

It is hard to for to really say anything too negative about this book – it is the first fantasy adventure I ever read and it is what got me interested in the genre to begin with. I read it in elementary school, and thought that I would give it another go. It was still a really entertaining read, but I was BLOWN AWAY by how much of a rip off this book is of LOTR. It is literally like reading LOTR light. Some people say Star Wars is a copy of LOTR, but that is not what I mean. This is basically the exact same story.

Quick rundown of the plot of this book: 2 hobbits are chased out of there safe village by a ringwraith, but not before a mysterious and powerful wizard had warned them of their danger and instructed them to flee to some other city. Upon arrival in the city, a fellowship consisting of 2 hobbits, 2 elves, 1 dwarf, 2 men, and 1 wizard unite to travel to kill the Warlock Lord in Mordor. one of the hobbits is the one who carrys the burden of ultimately needing to kill the Warlock Lord with the Sword of Shannarah. Eventually the hobbit has to separate from the group and face the final part of the journey solo, as the remaining fellowship defends the biggest free city against a massive army consisting of gnomes and trolls.

Long story short – this book rules. It is written like Angels & Demons or some other page turner, but in fantasy format. I enjoyed it very much. It gets a rating of 9 for easyness to read, and 6 for quality.

Also – last summer I read a prequel to the Shannarh series. It is a trilogy called “Genesis of Shannarah” – the first book is all I have read, titled “Armageddon’s Children”. I liked this book about as much acutally. Basically, the premise is that we are in a post-apocolpytic America in an epic battle of good vs. evil. Not quite as much fantasy though – more man vs. deamon, with some elves thrown in. Ultimately the adventure appears to be leading to some epic event that changes the landscape of earth as we know it, and leading into the original Sword of Shanarrah series. What makes this series particularly interesting though, is that most of it takes place in Seattle after it has been nuked. The elves live in the forests east of the Oregon Coast. I recommend this book as well.

Materialism Revisited

Posted in Big Dog on Sunday, December 28 by KevinLHinton

I have recently been attempting to throw the entire US economy on my back as I continue to buy a lot of shit. Your welcome Target shareholders. This binge of materialism was spurred by a recent successful purchase of a very nice gray Nike sweatshirt. Unfortunately, my recent purchases have left me feeling unsatisfied. shallow. indebted. lonely.

As I lounge on my new microsuede sectional watching Sportscenter on my new flatscreen, I wonder what could have been this holiday season. I continue to aggresively pursue a domesticated lifestyle that I despise in my hypothetical blogosphere world. But where would I be today if I lived by my hoboboobies ideals? Certainly not living in the very pleasant Issaquah Highlands community. Probably would be living at the frat. Pursueing excellence. Freakdancing.

But that is a Bizarro world dream – I remain trapped in the real world. A world of comfortable couches. luxury. crisp TV screens. pleasent lamp shades. What do I make of it? It is pretty nice – but I miss my friends of  christmas past. I am committed to this experiment of materialism. Really I don’t have much else to do. I will continue to spend – so I invite you to visit. join in. observe. whatever. Just come on out – I miss hanging out more than I enjoy this soft fabric against my skin.

Let it be known to all.

Posted in Big Dog with tags , on Sunday, December 14 by KevinLHinton

There is a new LittleDog on the way. Parenting suggestions are welcome. I am traditionally very uncomfortable around children and especially babies. Also uncomforatable and awkward around girls, so that could be interesting.

Now that I am a Dad to be, I realize I will have to make a lot of lifestyle changes. Things that used to be cool are no longer cool. For example, it is wierd to watch porn or to masturbate if you are a Dad. That daily ritual of the past 14 years is on its last leg.

I have to become less dependant on swear words to make jokes funny.

I have to develop man strength. Right now it looks like I may be the first Dad to not have man strength. I have a lot of pushups to do between now and June. I think the secret is to develop your core.

In other news, I finished the book Brisngr. It was almost as bad as the movie Eragon. Very long, very boring, very shitty. Also, out of nowhere, they decided to make the series 4 books long. Great surprise ending to the worst book ever – it isn’t even really over. Now I am commited to the series and have to read another 800 pages to figure out that Eragon indeed kills Galbatrox.

Seriously though, nothing happens in this book. I think 2 or 3 significant events happen, each only takes about 20 pages. The other 700 pages are dedicated to Eragon traveling around. That was ok in LOTR, but that was because the book was about the journey, and there was a bunch of sweet shit happening along the way. In this, it literally is just him flying around talking to his stupid dragon about how sweet he is.

I will probably burn this trilogy, because my awesome child will someday see these books and the cool drawing of dragons on the front, and think, man, I want to read that book. But if LittleDog is going to build a bullettrain systems across the states, he/she better not waste his time on a POS book like Brisngr.

Materialism…. WTF

Posted in Big Dog with tags , , , on Wednesday, November 26 by KevinLHinton

I bought a new Nike sweatshirt today. TJ Max, $30. Originally $50. Gray zip up hoody. It is literally just a gray sweatshirt, but I have been beaming all day since I bought this thing. I feel wonderful in it. It is comfortable, it fits well, and looks badass. My day has legitimately been way fucking better than it ever would have been without that sweatshirt.

It is just a sweatshirt though. This happens to me with every purchase I make. I got a new cell phone last weekend – love it. If I get a new pair of shoes I can’t stop wearing them. I immediately want to to show everybody anything I buy and talk about how cool I think it is.

What the fuck is my problem? Consumerism/Materialism seems to be accepted around here as a fundamental evil in our society. Why does it make me so genuinely happy with myself to wear this sweatshirt? Has our society trivialized life so much that my joys in this world come from a hoody from TJ Max now?

The greatest joys in life are:

1. New Experiences 

2. Competitive sports/physical activity

3. Accomplishing something 

4. A good joke/good story/good conversation

 5. buying shit

6. being comfortable/sleeping

7. Eating tasty food/drink  

8. Orgasms

9. Taking a shit

I think that is a pretty comprehensive list of all things in life that bring joy to me. Interestingly, buying things has krept up above sleeping, eating, sex, and pooping.

I probably speak out about how our consumer based society is a piece of garbage as much as anybody, but today I recognized that I am a complete hypocrite. I absolutely love buying new shit.

On another note, I think I will completely give up on trying to buy and fashionable items for clothes. I will now only wear sports apparrel. It is very comfortable and looks nice.

Anyways, I haven’t posted for a while, so I am going with this. I feel as if I have nothing relavent to offer on Parker’s post, although I enjoyed it. Parker – you are turning into a bit of a mad scientist.

Sherwin Williams Logo… Really?

Posted in Big Dog with tags , on Sunday, September 28 by KevinLHinton

sherwin.jpg

Saw this at the paint store the other day. Seems like a pretty bold fuck you to the earth.

My Google Plot to Save the World

Posted in Big Dog on Wednesday, September 24 by KevinLHinton

A rough outline per google’s peramiters for the 10 million dollar prize:

1. One sentence that best explains the idea.

To rebuild America’s infrastructure through private enterprise.

2. 300 words of the idea in greater depth.

First, I want to invent a new form of private enterprise. Second, I want to use this new form of business to rebuild America’s broken infrastructure.

I want a corporation driven by values instead of by dollars. How? Eliminate the shareholders. Businesses financed by 0% equity, 100% debt. Zero equity means zero profit obligations.

If profit is not the goal, what is? To provide the best service or product possible. Everybody wins. We get jobs that matter and that we can actually be proud of. Consumers get higher quality at lower prices. Break-even strategy means lower price points than competition and a higher probability of success in the market. Higher wages for employees, zero wages for non-existent owners. Essentially, I want to eliminate unearned income in America, and inflate earned income.

This is not instead of our current corporate form, but in addition to, in select broken industries vital to America’s infrastructure.  Green Efficient Energy, Green Efficient Transportation, Insurance, Health Care, Agriculture, Banking, Education, etc. It should bolster our capital markets, as industry will have access to our new efficient and innovative infrastructure. For example, less expensive insurance, transportation, and loan costs.

Where do we start? America’s most pressing need right now – loans. We can take Google’s 10 million dollars and loan it to already established private businesses that are willing to voluntarily realign their values with this plan. A 2% loan on 10 million is 200,000 annually, which will be plenty to cover fees of a loan officer, and will be a very enticing incentive for businesses.

3. 150 words on the issues/problems the idea addresses.

Corporate America and the federal government have a monopoly on America’s infrastructure. They are not up to the task. Bureaucracy, greed, scandal, power etc. all plague this landscape.

Who trusts our current economic and political model to adequately take on the challenge we face today? I certainly do not.

If we want to build a strong, green economy, a new healthcare system, a reformed education system, a regulated financial sector, we cannot count on the same broken and outdated tools that we have relied on to get us into our current mess.

This idea presents a revamped economic model to deal with today’s changing and increasingly complex environment that basic capitalism has proven incapable handling.

 

4. 150 words on who would benefit and how.

Everybody benefits.

Worldwide Consumers benefit,. Lower costs, higher quality on essentials like healthcare, food, housing, energy, and transportation.

Employee’s find themselves with higher wages, and will be sparked with a new sense of what citizenship is all about, working everyday to build a new America.

Corporations as we know them benefit from improved infrastructure.

Government is released of many bureaucratic burdens, and will have an opportunity to reinvent itself.

A strong, healthy, and idealistic America is a powerful basis for all forms of charity, and the world will prosper from it.

5. 150 words on the initial steps to get the idea off the ground.

We can use the publicity of winning “Project 10 to the 100th” to market our plan to suitable existing private companies, as well as solicit contributions to our loaning institution to broaden the scope of this project.

6. 150 words on the optimal outcome if idea is selected and implemented.

Already stated. Alright jerks, start poking holes in my plan to save the world. Parker?