Thursday, February 12, 2009

Life resumes on Sunday sunday sunday

At least for Kathy it does. The Amazing Race is now up to number 14, that's 14 amazing, uh, races, all around the world. For me life resumed when Psych and Burn Notice returned and as noted before, a Monk episode actually made me laugh for the first time in quite awhile. Not the latest episode (Bully), though, it was as weak as I've come to expect.

If it seems like I spend too much time watching tv it's because it's probably true. But now that we have HD on the DVR with an external HD (750 gigs) to hold even more HD shows, I'm an addict. Nothing like watching James Bond (Sean Connery or Timothy Dalton only please) to brighten your mood. As I type I'm watching Dune in HD which is even better than the DVD, but this version has the scenes I don't care for with Baron Harkonnen and his mentat friend. The theme music in 5.1 shows how underrated Toto was, their music for Dune is easily my favorite for all movie themes. And it's hard to describe how good a show like The Last Mimzy looks in HD, just like looking out a window at a field of flowers, only better since I don't have to weed them.

I spent last night reconfiguring our wireless security, I'm not sure who told me that MAC filtering is the best method but countless posts online argue otherwise, so we went back to WPA2-TKIP which should be better. Of course nothing would connect afterwards so I had to go to each device to set it up again which isn't half as fun as it sounds.

We hoped to have a little Psych party on Friday the 13th but it may turn out to be just Kathy and I since nobody else has agreed to come over. She may not enjoy it much as she has a strong aversion to scary movies, even the Puppet Masters freaked her out and that was about as scary as a bowl of ramen soup. Maybe it will be more funny than scary, it's nearly always funny.

In unrelated news our cat continues to be a self-indulgent brat, proving that I'm not the laziest or most self-indulgent occupant of our household. Which is why I keep her around since she usually fails to find the litter box at some point every day and she's not the friendliest cat in the whole world. Ask anyone she's attacked. She's at her best in the winter when she's at least willing to cuddle a bit, if only to steal some body heat.

It's fun to read everyone's blogs and it's too bad we didn't have this tech a long time ago, you can learn a lot about someone from their random thoughts. Then again, smoke signals weren't that bad and you could show some flourishes if you were skillful.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Great news! Monk wasn't awful

We just finished watching the latest episode of Monk, a Superbowl tribute. The plot wasn't too bad and I rarely cringed. In fact, for the first time in weeks I laughed out loud at one point. What used to be my favorite tv show has recently been dismal but maybe they can revive it if this is any indication.

In other news, I learned our Philips DVD DVP5992 player is even more awesome than I had thought. Not only will it upconvert DVDs to 1080i or 720p, not only will it play nearly every video format from AVI to MG1 or 2, but it has a USB port on the front that works great, too. I dumped some video files I'd encoded from DVDs I own onto a 4gig card and it played nearly all of them flawlessly. It won't play back MP4 files I encoded for my iPod Touch but it did everything else great. I could pay a ridiculous sum to Apple to get component AV cables to play videos on my Touch onto my HDTV but that's not likely since I dislike being ripped off.

The Westinghouse SK-40H520S 40" LCD HDTV remains my best online purchase in about 10 years and that's really saying something. Thank you eBay and Paypal for offering me such a great deal. 40 inches of 720P bliss and even regular tv and DVDs look better on the bigger screen.

But if when I add my new HD Dish DVR VIP722 the picture is even better, the resolution is far better even than an upconverted DVD. I was happy to take the 722 instead of the 622 (which I'd ordered) and I'm glad the tech didn't have the correct model with him. Almost twice the storage and I didn't have to pay the extra $100 to get it. I can also activate it's USB port (for $40) and add unlimited storage to it via an external hard drive. That should arrive in a few days and I'll update with the results when it does.