Archive for February, 2009

Oscar Picks

I am joining the fray and throwing my Oscar picks out there before the envelopes are opened.  I would say other than March Madness and the Super Bowl, this is the only other event I get involved with pools and betting.  I have done pretty well in past Oscar years, picking fairly well. Let’s see how I do this year.

Best Picture – Slumdog Millionaire

Best Director – Danny Boyle

Best Actor – Sean Penn (missed seeing Milk but from the few clips I have seen and all the reviews I have read, I am going with him, plus I think he’s great)

Best Actress – Kate Winslet

Actress in a Supporting Role – Viola Davis (this will be the only Oscar the movie Doubt gets)

Actor in a Supporting Role – the kid who played Michael in The Reader. Oh wait, he wasn’t nominated. Ok, this is my one total guess. I don’t think Heath Ledger would’ve been nominated had he been alive and I am not one for sentimental winners (sorry, as sensitive as everyone knows I am, this probably shocks you) but he will most likely win. So, I am going with Josh Brolin even though Michael Shannon should win, but people will believe his nomination was his “win”.

Documentary Feature – Man on Wire (loved it)

Foreign Language Film – The Class (saw the preview for this before the movie Happy Go Lucky and knew I had to see it. Puts Dangerous Minds and those other “school” movies to shame)

Writing, Adapted – Slumdog Millionaire

Writing, Original – Milk, though Happy Go Lucky is my other thought

The producers are promising a different, more lively, Oscars show.  We shall see…

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February 22, 2009 at 12:13 pm Leave a comment

Slumdog Slamdunk

So, I finally saw Slumdog Millionaire after having wanted to see it before it was even out. Yes, being half-Indian makes me slightly biased, but so be it.  It was a fantastic movie and worth every bit of the hype. I think the story was captivating in how it weaved past and present. I was transfixed.  You will be too, if you haven’t seen it. All of the characters were great – young, old, male, female (most especially the young).  Some of what the main characters witnessed as kids was enough to make me want to turn my head, but I also know that the slums of Mumbai truly exist and that life was well represented on screen.  I hope this movie wins for best movie, director, screenplay and score. It would be well deserved.

February 22, 2009 at 8:03 am Leave a comment

The Reader Review

I have no idea what my expectations would be for this movie. I knew that Kate Winslet was getting major kudos for her role and winning lots of awards and is seemingly a lock for the Oscar tomorrow night. Other than that, I wasn’t clear how the love story and the holocaust came together.  But I am a Kate Winslet fan and wanted to see it before the Oscars.

It was an incredible story, quiet and powerful.  I am still trying to figure out why Michael turned around and left the prison.  And I can’t believe Hanna was too ashamed to admit her illiteracy as opposed to be seeing as a murderer.  In terms of what we choose and why, I will forever by astounded.  Sometimes, the choices we make are unbelievable, unreal, and against everything someone else would do.  It is what continues to amaze me about people and continues my search for answers.

February 21, 2009 at 10:41 pm Leave a comment

The compensation question

I don’t know about you, but it bothers me that President Obama makes $300,000/year (or thereabouts) but most CEO’s make millions and millions. Does this discrepancy make sense?  I am not advocating we raise the President’s salary. Actually, I think we should do the opposite and reduce CEO/COO/CIO pay; and NOT just for those organizations getting government aid per Business Week.

I absolutely believe that c-suite folks deserve to be paid according to the value they bring their companies, but realistically, how much value are they really bringing? The CEO to employee pay ratio has been escalating out of control for quite some time now. Is it really necessary for a CEO to make 600X the amount of the average employee?  Costco’s CEO Sinegal believes “If the CEO of a company is paid 10 to 12 times the highest hourly rate, that is probably pretty fair.”  Great concept!  GE’s CEO Immelt has waived his bonus for 2008, worth over 11 million, because of the economy and for the health of his company.  Hmm, any other CEO’s listening out there?

Apparently our own government needs to learn a lesson as the Postmaster General received a $70,000 raise last year and earned himself a $135,000 bonus. Wait, isn’t this the same person who told us recently that they may cut mail delivery to weekdays only to save money while also raising stamp prices again? That doesn’t sound like a flourishing business to me but we can thank Congress for his lavish salary as they approved it.

Interesting, the average employee is hearing that their bonuses are being frozen as are their wages.   The pay inequity rages on.  However, change is on the horizon.  As more hear about these issues, the more we can all speak up and create the change that is needed.  I hope you use your greatest asset, YOU, to bring about the kind of changes that are needed for all of us to live successfully!

February 20, 2009 at 1:22 pm Leave a comment

Do you tweet?

I fully admit that I learn about a lot of technology, very early on.  But, you could not say I was an early adopter.  I learned about LinkedIn.com in 2004 when it was a year old but didn’t join until the following year. See, not an early adopter, though much earlier than most.  Same kind of thing with Facebook.  And now, Twitter. I have known about Twitter for about two years now. I actually created an account last spring and then never used it. Not once. Then I started using it in January.  See, not an early adopter, but an early learner.

Shoot, when you read a ton of different magazines, read about 50 blogs while you eat your breakfast, you are bound to find little tidbits of info to follow-up on later. And the crazy thing is, I do. I go off on odd internet tangents all the time. I have learned immensely this way and forever will be grateful for Google and its infinite wisdom to know where I want to head.  Google hasn’t made us dumber (still dislike that magazine cover on the topic).

If you tweet too, come follow me @positivitycoach (http://www.twitter.com/positivitycoach)

February 19, 2009 at 10:17 am Leave a comment

Pageturners

I love a good page-turner.  When I was younger it started out with V.C. Andrews. Remember her? Flowers in the Attic, Petals in the Wind – the whole Dollanger saga. I found the series fascinating. I used to try to figure out why the mother was the way she was, how the kids turned out as the did. It was all very psychological for me, which are the best kinds of pageturners in my mind.

I moved on to Stephen King.  Wow, that man can write.  The last book of his I read was Salem’s Lot. Scared me to death and it didn’t help that most of his books were starting to get made into movies when I read that one and I knew what kind of scariness he could throw at you.  Oh wait, I did read his autobiography, On Writing, last year but I don’t think that counts. It was an awesome read if you are interested. He’s a very honest engaging writer, no matter the topic, which is why I stick to his writings in Entertainment Weekly now!

The latest page-turner I picked up is James Patterson’s latest, Run for your Life.  I liked it because it wasn’t an Alex Cross book (even though I love that series) and the language was different that some of his other books.  The only thing I didn’t like was the protagonist’s name was ‘the teacher’, which reminded me of that awful Alec Baldwin movie with Demi Moore (so awful, I can’t remember the title). If you know me, if I am absorbed in a good book, little can pry me from it.  Such was the case with this one, in which I read it in one four-hour sitting.   I am already looking for the next page-turner to read!  Any suggestions?

February 18, 2009 at 9:44 am Leave a comment

Readers, it’s your turn

QUICK QUIZ ….

who can tell me why I named the five cities that I did in yesterday’s post?  Reply back and let me know what you think.

Randomly drawn winner gets a $10 gift certificate to Amazon.com

Enjoy!

February 17, 2009 at 8:39 am Leave a comment

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