Monday, August 30, 2010

Are We Obsessed With Killing?

So I was watching some of the Emmy Awards earlier today and I was actually surprised at how much this show called Dexter was nominated for awards! Now they didn't get any, although director Steve Shill did win one for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series, but I was still surprised at the amount of times the series kept popping up!

If you don't know what the series Dexter is about here is a quick breakdown.

Dexter is about a guy named Dexter Morgan who works for the Miami Police Department as a blood spatter expert for the Homicide unit. When serial killers come along he finds out who they are and then leads the Miami PD astray just long enough so that they cannot find the serial killer. Then Dexter goes after the Serial killer and kills them himself. Basically, Dexter is a serial killer of serial killers!

So I was wondering if we are just attached to watching shows that had to do with murdering people! What makes the killing of others so attractive?

I wanted to write about current movies that were in the theaters that had to do with killing people, but currently where I live there are only 2 movies out there.

The first one is Piranha. Not really a murder movie yet people get killed by psycho piranha's. I guess that some movies like this one that have lots of killings in them also get a lot of popularity. Just look at any of the Friday the 13th movies of any of the Nightmare on Elm Street movies! At least 10 people get murdered in those movies each and every time! Yet people seem to like watching people being murdered! That's why they keep making these movies!

The second movie out there is The Expendables. You want to talk about killing people then this is the movie to talk about! The Expendables has approximately 180 people getting killed in the movie, yet this movie has been the number one rated movie almost since it opened! This weekend was the first time it had dropped since being number one. This weekend it dropped to number three.

But lets look at the cast of The Expendables and see just how much each one of them has killed in their careers!

Mickey Rourke – 28 Kills on screen in 61 Films – 0.45 kills

per film.

Most Kills:- 15 as Marv in Sin City

Kills in The Expendables: 0

Jason Statham – 147 Kills on screen in 23 Films – 6.4 kills per film.

Most Kills:- 60 as ‘Farmer’ in ‘In the name of the King’

Approximate kills in The Expendables: 80

Bruce Willis - 168 Kills on screen in 62 Films – 2.7 per film.

Most Kills – 26 as Korban Dallas in Fifth Element

Approximate kills in The Expendables: 0

Jet Li – 327 Kills on screen – 39 Films – 8.3 per film.

Most Kills – 50 as Kit Li in High Risk

Approximate kills in The Expendables: 30

Sylvester Stallone – 334 Kills on Screen – 50 Films – 6.7 per film.

Most Kills – 87 as John Rambo (2008)

Approximate kills in The Expendables: 60

Arnold Schwarzenegger – 513 Kills on screen – 31 Films – 16.5 per film.

Most Kills – 102 as Matrix in Commando

Approximate kills in The Expendables: 0

Dolph Lundgren – 632 Kills on screen – 36 Films – 17.5 per film.

Most Kills – 60 as Frank in the Punisher

Approximate kills in The Expendables: 10


TOTALS: 2149 Combined Kills in 302 Films.



1. HOW HIGH – If you laid all the bodies these guys have racked up in their movies and stack em up like a single tower morbid game of Jenga it would be the height of 2149 feet, 655 metres or 0.4 of a mile which is roughly the same size as five London Eye big wheels, Two Eiffel Towers or as tall as 13 Godzilla’s (Japanese 1954 original version).

2. HOW FAR- Alternatively if you don’t fancy stacking you could lay each body-bag head to toe (presuming each guy exterminated was 6 foot tall, which is about right height for your average villain) it will total up to about 12,894 feet, 2.5 Miles or 3,930 metres in Length. That’s 9.8 times around an Olympic track that would take Usain Bolt about six minutes to reach the end of running at full pelt.

3. BLOODBATH! – If the average human body contains 5.6 litres of blood and presuming after each life our action stars takes the bodies loses around half that, then there would be enough blood to fill 10,588 pints of beer, 22.3 baths of water and is three times the amount of blood used to blast out of the bed in A Nightmare on Elm Street!

Yes all of this is so interesting! And yes I did copy all of those last statistics about The Expendables from a site called "heyuguys". Did you really think that I had all that time to all this type of research? Heck no!

My whole point is why are we so obsessed with people getting killed and why do we flock to see these type of movies?

I wonder if we have created this type of society on our own. I mean, what if we are the ones who watched these type of things as we were children and then wanted to expand our imagination and make something that was already violent, even more violent. So I decided to do some digging and here's what I found from the Parents Television Council.

Over the years, there have been literally hundreds of studies examining the connection between media violence and violence in real-life. In 1952, the United States House of Representatives was holding hearings to explore the impact of television violence and concluded that the "television broadcast industry was a perpetrator and a deliverer of violence." Then in 1972, the Surgeon General's office conducted an overview of existing studies on television violence and concluded that it was "a contributing factor to increases in violent crime and antisocial behavior." In his testimony to the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Surgeon General Jesse Steinfeld said, ""It is clear to me that the causal relationship between televised violence and antisocial behavior is sufficient to warrant appropriate and immediate remedial action… There comes a time when the data are sufficient to justify action. That time has come."

Remember that these studies were done way back when! I really wonder what they would say now! But I'm talking about murder, not just violence! It is estimated that by the time an average child leaves elementary school, he or she will have witnessed 8,000 murders and over 100,000 other acts of violence. By the time that child is 18 years-of-age; he or she will witness 200,000 acts of violence, including 40,000 murders.

So my question is when did all of this become ok? When did we as a society make it ok to make violent movies? Make movies that we kill people? Are we promoting murder? Is that why murder is on the rise in America? We allow music to be produced that talks about murdering people. We allow video games to be put out there that puts you in the roll of a murderer!

Wether you know it or not, you can stop it. But how! It's really easy. Don't buy it! In America we produce what sells. If violent movies are selling, that's just what Hollywood is going to produce! If violent video games are a hot selling item, then your going to see more and more violent video games popping up. I guess that's why I like Nintendo so much! They hardly have any violent video games on their system!

If you don't think that you have the power to change things things buy not buying them, think about this. You go to the movies. You have just bought your ticket to see the movie The Expendables. Just kidding! You've got your tickets to go see Toy Story 3. Your seeing this movie with someone close to you. You get a large popcorn to share and the both of you get a medium drink. Now, how much did that just cost you? I'd be willing to be that you just spent around $28 dollars just on the tickets a popcorn and two drinks! Does that not sound like you have just been ripped off? When Toy Story 3 comes out on DVD, you are going to be able to buy the DVD, an 18 pack of microwave popcorn, and two 3 liter cokes for less than $28!

So why do we pay for things like popcorn and cokes at a movie theater, knowing that we are getting ripped off? If we were in a grocery store we would complain to the manager that their prices were horrible and if they didn't change them we would never shop there again? Since we allow ourselves to get ripped off in a movie theater, they continue to charge those prices. The longer you pay for those items at a very high price the longer they are going to stay high priced. However, if you refused to buy their product then prices would plummet!

That was kind of off the subject but the point was that as long as people continue to buy into violent movies and such, violence is what is going to be produced! It's just like when people say, "Sex sells". It has a truth to it because you see half naked girls on beer commercials, magazines, in nascar, and in all other types of things. Sex sells, and so does violence! Especially murder!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Did Roger Clemens Ever Really Use Steroids?

On Monday, August 30, 2010, seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens will be arraigned on federal charges of perjury, making false statements and obstruction of Congress.

But did he really do the things that he is accused of doing? Did Roger Clemens really use steroids and if so, where is the proof? I'm a proof kind of guy, and when someone is accused of doing something, I want to see the proof! However, this case that he is involved in right now just seems to be a he said/she said type scenario! Well, I guess since there is no females involved it would rather be a he said/he said, but you know what I mean.

Roger Clemens testified before Congress back in February of 2008 denying that he ever used steroids during his career as a major league baseball pitcher. However Clemens' former trainer, Brian McNamee has come out and told Congress that Clemens was lying. McNamee has said that he himself personally gave Clemens steroids. To make matters even worse for Clemens, one of his former teammates, Andy Pettitte, has also come out and said that he knows for a fact that Clemens was using steroids.

Even after all this, Clemens still maintains that he never used steroids at any point in his career!

What I would like to see is a video or a picture or something that proves that he was using steroids. I don't like the fact that Clemens says he never used and these other two people say that he did, and now Clemens is accused of lying because he is outnumbered. Where is the justice in that? We need proof people! This scenario is just as bad as someone being accused of murder, yet no one can find a body!

I'll be real honest, I have never really liked Roger Clemens! I think the guy is cocky! To be really honest, I think the guy is a jerk, but I wouldn't go out and accuse him of doing something like using steroids unless I had solid evidence, such as a picture or video, of Clemens actually doing the things that he was accused of doing! That's just not right!

Maybe I'm wrong, but it just seems like to me that I keep hearing about more and more cases where they are based on hearsay rather than being based on proof! What is this country coming too?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Is Wal-Mart Hurting Themselves?

Most everybody has heard of Wal-Mart. There is probably one in your city. Wal-Mart is one of the biggest chains of stores in America and it continues to grow!

Recently, Wal-Mart has introduced a fairly new program called site-to-store where a customer can order something online and have it shipped to their local Wal-Mart to be picked up at no cost to the customer. Basically if you order something online from Wal-Mart and have it shipped to your local Wal-Mart store, they will fork out the shipping cost. However, you will have to pay the shipping if you opt to have whatever your ordering shipped to your house or business.

This can save customers tons of money if they shop online quite frequently. After all, every store has an online site that offers tons of things that you cannot get at your local store. Some stores offer free shipping if an order is over a certain amount. For example, you might be able to get free shipping on an item you purchase from Best Buy if you spend at lease $100 on it. But with site-to-store from Wal-Mart, every item won't cost you a dime in shipping as long as you opt to have it shipped to a local Wal-Mart store.

So is Wal-Mart helping themselves or hurting themselves? The answer is both. I'll give you reasons for both.

The first would be that Wal-Mart is helping themselves by offering the free shipping if you have the item that you order sent to your local Wal-Mart to be picked up. This is drawing crowds of people to their site for this simple reason. People know that most other sites will charge shipping unless they are having a free shipping promotion or they are offering free shipping on orders of "X" amount of dollars. Wal-Mart ensures that customers never have to pay for shipping as long as the customer ships to a local Wal-Mart. This is great for those who would rather go online and shop rather than go out in town and avoid the crowds. It also is great for people who go online to shop for things not offered at the local store. Wal-Mart, as well as every other retailer like them, offers thousands of items not offered in their local store. Essentially, customers can save a few dollars to hundreds of dollars if they opt to have the items that they are ordering shipped to their local Wal-Mart.

The second is that Wal-Mart is actually hurting their sales by doing site-to-store. This is done by Wal-Mart offering the same items online that they do in their local stores. Wal-Mart does not honor their online prices in their own store even though they are the same place. Also Wal-Mart does not offer an instant pickup like does Best Buy or some other retailers across the country. If you don't know what an instant pickup is, it is where you buy something online and can go to your local store and pick it up immediately if it is available in your local store. Wal-Mart does not offer either of these services. So if I find something cheaper on, a DVD for example, and print it out and take it into the local store, even though they are the same store, Wal-Mart will not honer their online prices in their local store. Also if I find something like a DVD and buy it online, I cannot just go down to the local Wal-Mart and pick it up. I have to wait for it to either be shipped to me or shipped to the store via site-to-store.

Most of the time, Wal-Marts online rates are cheaper than their in store rates. Wal-Mart usually offers such things as Blu-Ray DVD's for around $10 cheaper online, than if you would buy them in the store. For this reason, you can get tons of stuff cheaper on their online site if your willing to wait a few days to get it and you can save even more by avoiding shipping via site-to-store.

So is Wal-Mart hurting themselves? Only time will tell, but I say yes. As more and more people are discovering that they can order things online from Wal-Mart cheaper than they can go get them at their local store, the popularity of site-to-store continues to grow. Over time, this can effect the sales inside the local stores. Not only that but this can also create smaller freight trucks for Wal-Mart, due to all the site-to-store merchandise being shipped on regular trucks. This means that in some cases, Wal-Mart might have to send more than one truck to deliver their merchandise to the stores.

While Wal-Mart may not be hurting themselves with things that are online that a customer cannot purchase in the store, they are hurting themselves by offering lower prices on things that are online that you can go to your local store and purchase.

Maybe I'm wrong. I guess we'll just have to wait and see, but I bet that the site-to-store program won't be around much longer. I'd be willing to bet that it's gone within the next five years.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Love Of A Brother

Yesterday, my five year old daughter lost her first tooth. Having two older brothers she knew all about the tooth fairy and that she could get a little bit of money if she stuck her tooth under her pillow. She took her tooth and stuck it in a ziploc bag and then stuck it under her pillow.

I got the kids up for school, and like usual, they were a little groggy, but I woke them up and told them it was time for school. So while the kids were getting ready for school I decided to make breakfast. I was making eggs with sausage and potatoes and such, when my 13 year old came out to see what I was doing. I had asked him to go check on his sister and brother and make sure that they were getting up for school. He left and then came back a few minutes later. After I was done cooking breakfast, I went and checked on the other two once again.

My daughter was awake and she hadn't forgot about her tooth at all. She immediately looked under her pillow and found a dollar. Not much, but to a five year old, a dollar is like a million bucks. She was so excited. I was thinking in my head that I was grateful that my wife had remembered to put a dollar under her pillow because I had forgotten all about her tooth. Typical guy thing to forget about that type of stuff.

I went back into the kitchen and started making breakfast burrito's with the food that I had cooked. A few minutes later, my 13 year old came up to me and said, "Here dad". He laid something on the counter, but there was a pot in the way and I couldn't see it. I looked around the pot and still didn't see it. I asked him what it was and he picked it up and said, "It's Harley's tooth". I looked at him and said, "How in the world did you end up with her tooth?" Then he told me that when he went into her room to wake her up he looked under her pillow and noticed that my wife and I had both forgotten to replace the tooth with some money. So he told me that he got some of his own money and replaced the tooth with it. When I heard that he had done this, I immediately got all choked up and began to tear up. I gave him the biggest hug ever and thanked him.

It just amazes me how much our children take care of their brothers and sisters and even bail out their parents when their parents forget. We all forget at sometimes, and it's the best feeling in the world to know that we have children looking out for us! God bless the children of this world.