Monday, July 18, 2005

Weekend wrap-up.

The weekend was absolutely phenomenal. The Cumberland Lake trip was abandoned due to expected rains (which makes pontooning and/or jet skiing a bad proposition. So we decided to go to Dave and Busters, a games arcade that is my favorite. The concept at Dave and Busters is straightforward -- you play games and in some games you win tokens that can be redeemed for goodies. One thing is clear -- games that are absolute fun do not have token vending abilities. On the other hand slot-machine style games don't provide any entertainment except for the tokens you might get if you do well on them. So it depends what you're there for. If you're there to go motorbike racing with your buddies, then don't collect tokens - just have fun. On the other hand, if you've got a girlfriend who wants that cuddly teddy bear sitting in the goodies section, then aim for the slot machines where you can get tokens even if you play average but play long. We had a lot of fun. We played a mixture of games - some included token games and others were fun games like bike racing, shooting missions and such. In the end, we spent about 50 dollars and had 1614 tokens to show for it. That number of tokens got us four small cuddly toys and one shot glass. My goal is always this - for every dollar spent at Dave and Busters, you must make at least 30 tokens to buy anything respectable from the goodies store. That formula doesn't make you even or anything, but it'll put you in the right ballpark to get something out of the money you spent.

This weekend was also the "crave for an IPOD" weekend. The trouble with the IPOD continues to remain the same as it was a year ago. I cannot in any sane frame of mind, justify spending 300+ dollars on a music playing machine plugged into my ears, however cool it may be. There's a certain specific model I like but anyway that's besides the point. We almost went out and bought one but then my senses came back and I refrained. I have a car stereo, headphones at work and a music system at home. I don't understand where I'm going to play the IPOD if I've got accessible music in all these locations. One big benefit to the IPOD is that it consolidates all your music into one neat little compact package that looks sexy and that also makes it very highly portable. But still...300 dollars to do THAT? I can spend 300 dollars and get an extra 15 sq. ft on the deck at home and enjoy it for years to come with more than enough cost justification. So, all in all, no IPOD for me. The particular model I like needs to get down to $99 before I will buy it. Maybe two years from now.

We went to a drive-in theater to watch "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". Noddy's parents have never been to a drive-in so we wanted to show them what the experience was like. It's decent if you can skip the restrooms and the food stalls. The movie was good if you let your imagination go wild. If you liked "Finding Neverland" then you will like this movie. If you don't let your imagination go wild and instead try to rationalize, the movie will seem wierd and won't make much sense. Special effects were good and the storyline was of course based on a novel and so were all the characters. Johnny Depp seems to have taken to playing child fairytale icon style roles. He does really well in them too so I don't see why not. Children should like this movie. Will you might consider taking your kids to see this one.


Blogger Will said...

I'm right there with you on the movie--we were there on opening night. Well, I was with my daughter---my boys had their day at the movies with the Fantastic 4 opening. I'm sure we'll end up owning the Burton film.

I know what you mean on the iPod. I'm a strong advocate for the shuffle too, though, as you know. It's a lot cheaper and you can still carry around 10 hours of music (more than I can listen to in a day). And the Autofill function in iTunes means it's still easy to randomly suprise yourself with the darker, forgotten corners of your music collection.

I'm sure the music players will come down when the Video iPod comes out just around the corner---or so it's rumored.

6:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not That I think you need another piece of hardware to lust after, but I highy recommend the i730 - I think it will be about 500 if you sign a 2 year ontract, but its the ultimate gadget convergence - MP3 player, PDA with wireless and cell phone all in one....

11:00 PM  

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