Monday, July 30, 2007

Car Camping - My Weekend Update

I have returned from nature. I am still alive! Better yet, I am no longer a married car-camping newbie. I mean, I have gone camping before, with the girls, with friends. But never as a married woman, never with my Hubbs, and not in a long time (6 years to be exact).

Highlights of the weekend:

-Great fires, great company, and great food and drink (Chai liqueur, caesars, fruity drinks, steak, smokies, marshmallows...YUM)
-A dry tent, warm bags, and toques to keep us warm
-An easy-to-inflate air mattress that helped keep us from having to sleep on a hard ground
-Gas (for the stove, from our mouths, from our butts)...made for lots of giggling
-Interesting conversation all the way there, while there, and all the way back
-95% Deet Muskol. Saved me from being mosquito feed.
-Fantastic camping gear (all packed by my Superstar sis and her SpaceMax hubby)
-My comfy camping chair

Lowlights of the weekend:

-The outhouse. I gagged and nearly puked every time I had to visit that evil place. I was sorely tempted to go in the bushes, had my company not been so adverse to this suggestion. How do outhouses get such a nasty acidic foul waste odour without people complaining and demanding more chemical cleansing? I know it (the chemical cleansing) happens once every morning, but shouldn't it be more frequent, like once every 2 hours? Even our local mall bathrooms are tidied up every hour or two. So should be outhouses.

-The fruit flies. Apparently they like Caesar salad and red wine, because our delicious dinner was innundated by these small nasty little flies. Anyone got a good way to keep these things out of your eating area? They were so small that even a screen tent wouldn't have kept them away.

-The bugs inside our tent when we tried to take it down. I wish there was a way to suck up all the bugs and all the twigs and leaves from the inside of the tent before we put it away, but unfortunately there was no solution that would work. I am open to suggestions/ideas from more seasoned campers out there....but I was told we'd just have to air out and clean out the tent the next time we want to use it. Bug corpses await. Nice.

All in all, though, an amazing experience and a very relaxing time. We'll definitely go again, and next time we can start adding to our collection of gear. I am excited. :)

How was your weekend?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

It's Tuesday, Right?

Is it bad that, due to my present state of unemployment, my days tend to blend together and I actually lose track? Today feels like a Wednesday (my least favourite day of the week) and yet I am pretty sure it's still Tuesday, at least until after I go to bed and wake up again.

Anyway, I missed the Monday meme so here's the Tuesday one instead:

Five people to tag: Oh heck, I tag you all! :P

What were you doing 10 years ago?
I was working at the university in their housing department during the summer.

Five Snacks You Enjoy
(on a diet):
1. popcorn
2. baked Cheetos
3. baked pita & hummus
4. cereal
5. Rainier cherries

(off a diet):
1. Munchie Mix
2. bite-size brownies
3. soft serve ice cream
4. leftover pizza
5. dry ribs

Five Songs That You Know All The Lyrics To:
1. Because of You - Kelly Clarkson
2. Most Celine Dion songs
3. Most praise & worship songs
4. The Greatest Love of All - Whitney Houston
5. Most of the Miss Saigon soundtrack

Five Things You Would Do If You Were a Multi-Millionaire:
1. Buy a house in Vancouver
2. Buy new furniture for this home of ours
3. Fly to Hong Kong, Europe, and Hawaii on vacation
4. Buy a new car
5. Share the wealth with family (and tithe)

Five bad habits:
1. Laziness/procrastination
2. Not removing my make-up at night
3. Nail-biting
4. Leaving my nail polishing stuff everywhere instead of putting it back right away
5. Addictions to the Net

Five Things You Like To Do:
1. Eat
2. Shop
3. Nap
4. Socialize
5. Surf the Web

Five Things You Would Never Wear Again:
1. Hot pink/fuscia sweat suit
2. Stirrup pants
3. Scrunchies
4. Big oversized glasses
5. Acid wash

Five Favorite Toys:
1. Laptop
2. Cell phone
3. Digital camera
4. Label maker
5. Nintendo DS

Oh, and I am weak. I tried to read just a few chapters of Harry Potter 7 yesterday and ended up unable to put down the book. I started reading at about 2:00 pm and interrupted my inhalation of the last book of the series only to use the washroom 3 times, and to eat. I was done before 10:00 p.m. so it took me a little longer than expected.

That said, the book was fantastic, and I will probably re-read it to catch all the little details I might have missed because I was going through the book so quickly.

Oh, and my most memorable moments of the book: (SPOILERS - highlight to see the text)

* When Harry looks into the pensieve and gets the full story on Snape
* When Dumbledore's conversation with Snape reveals that he had loved Lily Potter to the point of taking on her Patronus doe; I thought his courage was touching (I cried; it moved me)
* When Ron returns after abandoning ship and Hermione gives him the worst time for it; I do the same immature sort of thing to Hubbs as she does in giving him the cold treatment ;)
* When Lupin and Tonks die together (I cried; it was a sad memorable moment)
* When Dudley half-compliments Harry - redemption!
* Neville's courageous last act against the final Horcrux, brandishing his sword
* Albus' brother and his covert assistance to the Order
* Narcissa Malfoy and her redemptive act in helping Harry

Though this was definitely the darkest book in the series, I enjoyed it as much (possibly more) than I enjoyed OOTP and Half-Blood Prince. I think the books have improved from the first to the last, possibly because they became darker and more mature in their themes. The only thing I really disliked was the epilogue, mostly because I have biases against ruining the ending of books with follow-up. That said, I understand why Rowling did it and I am glad she did not leave much room for others to continue the Harry Pottery story.

Book Rating: 10 / 10 Awesome & Riveting

Friday, July 20, 2007

In Honor of Harry

Are you a fan? Come on, surely you are! I am a huuuuuuuuuge fan, and have devoured all 6 current books at least once (in some cases, 3 times). I am impressed with Rowling's vivid imagery, which tells me she spent a lot of time creating her magic world in her head before she sat down to pen even a single letter. It draws me into the story, immerses me in the fantastical world of house elves and magic paintings and flying broomsticks and oral spells, and allows me to escape and follow Harry through his exciting journey through adolescence. With every novel the series gets a little more mature, a little darker, and a lot more exciting. In my mind, Book 4 was the turning point and that marked the start of my favourite books of the series. That is, until now.

Starting tomorrow, when I get my warm little paws on the Deathly Hallows (I pre-ordered, didn't you?), I will probably proclaim it to be my favourite book. Yes, I have read some of the spoilers, and apparently there is an epilogue (and if there is, I won't like it. I dislike epilogues as a general rule). That aside, I am certain this will be the darkest, most mature, and most exciting book yet. I can't wait.

To mark the release of the book, and the end of the Harry Potter series, I am going to do a little HP meme (thanks to With Love, Fat Girl). Enjoy, and happy reading on this hot and stormy weekend! =)

1. Butterbeer or Pumpkin Juice? I think butterbeer. It must be a creamier version of real beer, or else a milder one at any rate.

2. What's your wand? Crystallized Ebony with Swarovski Crystals

3. What would be your Hogwarts house? Hufflepuff

i'm in hufflepuff!

be sorted @

4. If you were an animagus, which animal would you be? A portly little hedgehog. :)

5. Which character do you resemble best? Cho Chang. :) Easy.

6. What position would you play at Quidditch? Keeper. I am good at defensive guarding, not so much at scoring. That said, I'm slow. I should probably stay on the sidelines and cheer.

7. Pet? Hedwig, Jr. I like snowy owls best, but I prefer the younger ones.

8. Which teacher is your favourite? Prof. McGonagall and Firenze

9. What would your patronus be? A phoenix.

10. Which disgusting Bertie Bott's every flavoured bean would you be willing to try? None of them. Gross.

11. Which Hogwarts room would you love to visit? Dumbledore's office.

12. Favourite Harry Potter moment? I don't have a favourite one, but I did enjoy reading about the formation of Dumbledore's Army, and how Harry had to teach the less-skilled students how to use various spells. It was so conspiratorial....loved it!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Tuesday Meme

So apparently I forgot to post a meme yesterday. Here's one today, to make up for it! Enjoy :)

1} Last thing you burned while attempting to cook?
Milk on the stove as I tried to heat it up for hot chocolate

2} Describe yourself in three "s" words:
Sleepy, shopaholic, sentimental

3} How long does it take you to get ready for your day?
1 hour

4} Favourite place to blow $50?
Anywhere. I love to shop!

6} What is something that turns you off from the opposite sex?
Poor personal hygiene (e.g. body odor, greasy hair, bad oily skin)

7} What kind of car do you drive?

8} What's in your CD player/ipod right now?
Praise & Worship

9} What celebrity would you have coffee with?
Victoria Beckham

10} What celebrity would you NOT have coffee with?
All the other celebrities

11} What kind of toothpaste do you use?

12} What time do you go to bed?
Generally 10:00 p.m.

13} Last movie you saw?
Wedding Crashers

14} Last TV show you watched?
Victoria Beckham: Coming to America

15} Who are your best friends?
Hubbs - and a few other v. close girlfriends

16} Who in your family do you best get along with?
Hubbs ;) I get along equally with all of my siblings.

17} Who do you have a crush on?

18} What time is it right now?
11:18 am

20} When/Where was the last time you travelled?
Canmore over the Canada Day long weekend

21} How many times have you been in love?
Once - still am :)

22} How old will you be in 10 years?
29 :P

23} Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In Vancouver, with children

24} Sinful snacking weakness?
Dry ribs is my worst habit, but I have quite a few

25} Rollercoasters?

26} Ever run out of gas?

27} Ever been on a train?
Not the choo-choo kind, but the subway-style "trains" - yes.

28} Ever been on a blind date?

29} Ever been to Europe?
Not yet.

30} What would you do if you could be the opposite sex for one day?
I wouldn't want to be the opposite sex for even one minute, actually, so I would refuse the offer.

31} Would you tell anyone it was really you?
Yes - because I wouldn't be switching genders.

32} Ever been in a mosh pit?
Not a real one.

33} Have a crush on anyone you work with?
I don't work :P And no, I only have one crush....Hubbs.

34} What is something you believe in?
Jesus Christ, the one and only Son of God

35} What is something you fear?

36} Big or small?
All sized rodents, actually. I fear all of them. Wait...are we still talking about fears here?

37} What is the worst physical or emotional pain you have ever experienced?

38} What is your favourite television show?
24, Hell's Kitchen, Iron Chef, Amazing Race....there are so many.

40} Tell us something about your childhood.
I never had a bedtime and I watched a lot of Sesame Street, Three's Company, and Charlie's Angels.

41} What would it cost for you to flash the person next to you?
I don't flash.

42} Best time to catch you in a good mood?
There is never a good time; I'm spontaneous that way ;)

43} If you could be anything for one day, what would it be?
A famous celebrity, so that I could see what it feels like to be followed by the papparazzi

44} Most prized possesion?
My Bible? Anything can be replaced, and so I guess I don't prize material possessions.

45} Would you ever sell it/how much?

46} What is one of your pet peeves?
Smacking when eating

47} Favourite kind of ice cream?
Depends where I am...but I like soft serve vanilla a LOT at the moment.

48} Coolest thing that happened today?
Nothing so far.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Ten Thousand Spoons, When All You Need Is a Knife...


Literally. Have a look into our utensil drawer! I'm not kidding when I say that we have twice as many teaspoons as we have forks or knives or dessert forks or steak knives. In fact, we have so many teaspoons that the utensil holder can no longer hold all of the spoons in the designated spoon area anymore.

How did this happen? I only use teaspoons to stir skim milk into my tea. Hubbs only uses it when he eats cottage cheese at home, and usually a) he doesn't eat it at home, and b) he uses the big tablespoons to eat his cottage cheese.

So where did these little teaspoons come from? Did they "spoon" and reproduce in our drawer? One of life's unsolved mysteries.

How I Am Becoming a Better Developer...or something like that ;)

The new meme around the programming block happens to be my Hubbs' meme, based on his recent blog post, "How I Am Becoming a Better Developer: Part 1 of Infinity."

It has been making the rounds, and many developers have accepted the challenge of publicly vocalizing their professional goals on their blogs. Some of the big guns of the industry across the globe have even responded, including JP Boodhoo (Canada), Leon Bambrick (Australia), and Scott Hanselman (U.S.A.)!

I am impressed. Not only with Hubbs' own driven attitude towards self-improvement and professional development, but also with the inspiration he has provided to other programmers to do the same.

I'm not a programmer, and neither are most of you who chance upon my little corner of the blog universe. The question remains, however, for you and for me, in what ever it is that *we* do.

"How am I becoming a better _________?"

In my case, I'm a teacher. I'm a wife. I'm a daughter and sister and friend. How am I becoming better in each of my roles, and specifically in the role for which I am getting paid (or would get paid, if I had a job)?

This is a very important question to ask, one that is crucial in one's fight against mediocrity and stagnation. I am humbled by the challenge, and here are some things I plan to do to to become a better teacher:

1) Volunteer at Day Camp - This will allow me to work with children of multiple ages in less-structured environments and build my teaching and management skills while helping out my church.

2) Read: The First Days of School (Harry K. Wong)

3) Read: Ten Best Teaching Practices: How Brain Research, Learning Styles, and Standards Define Teaching Competencies (Donna Tileston)

4) Renew my library membership. And use it.

5) Pay a visit to Western Educational Activities and peruse through their resources, picking up some quality references for the beginning of the school year.

Okay, so these goals aren't quite as lofty as Hubbs', but they're a start. How are you going to be better at what you do?

This meme's for you. TAG!

If I was a boy,....

...and I liked beer, I would totally buy this:

This is a beer-bot. A beer-cooling/storing/serving robot. It apparently only works with cans, and costs about $800US, but I suppose if you were a beer-guzzling dude with a lot of extra cash on your hands, this would be a great gadget to buy.

I found out about this beer-bot at It, along with its sister site,, reminds me on a daily basis why I need to be rich and what gre
at stuff I cannot afford to buy. Actually, that's only partially true, because sometimes they feature cheap cool gadget-gear too, like this sponge holder that I actually *did* buy:

and the lesser version of this camping set:

and of course Hubbs got the KRAZR and I got the Sony Ericsson W810 (a lesser version of this phone).

I don't know if the sites inspire me to shop or simply validates my choices. Either way, it definitely reminds me that there are tons of cool things out there for me to spend my Hubbs' hard-earned dollars on! ;)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Shop Snob

Is it wrong to be a shop snob? I unabashedly admit to being one. There are just certain shops that I will not shop at, barring emergencies. I hesitate to say that it is because I am an elitist, although part of me does not want to be interacting with the type of people who might typically shop at these stores. It isn't elitism, though, since I might shop at other stores that these folks would shop at; I just wouldn't want to associate with them in the particular context of that store. I wouldn't call my shop snobbishness a class issue either, since there are many stores I shop at that would not be considered "classy" (e.g. Dollarama, Zellers, Everything for a Dollar, Army & Navy). I don't even think it is because of the overcrowding at these places, since I have no issue with crowds, having lived in HK for 4 years.

I honestly don't know what it is. There are just certain places where I refuse to shop at, and find miserable places to visit. These include (but are not limited to):

- Wal-mart (and yes, the camping gear was an exception emergency, and the first time I've been in that store in a year)
- A Buck or Two
- Superstore
- San Francisco (the novelty store)
- Liquidation World
- Value Village

Does this make me an evil person? Are there shops/stores that you just do not care to shop at, for incomprehensible reasons?

I'm looking for affirmation and validation here. Help....

Family Friendly - SFW!

Muchos gracias to Janeylynne for pointing out this really cool blog-rater to me. It essentially ranks one's blog using the movie-rating system, based on language/content.

I have been rated:

Free Online Dating

Mingle2 - Free Online Dating

Nice! I have strived to be relatively PG in my posts (in case past/present/future students might chance upon the thing), and this is very affirming to note.

Incidentally, Hubbs' blog is rated G as well, which does cause me to question the reliability of this tool! ;) Even so, I'm happy for the G rating.

Are you SFW?

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Roughing It - Before the Adventure

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a city slicker through and through. You know, the type of girl whose idea of a holiday includes 5-star resorts, massages, and pillow-topped dream-beds. I am not good at staying at 3-star motels; that is a rough experience for me. I am even less good at know, outdoors.

So imagine, to my own surprise, my excitement at being invited along on a camping trip with some friends and family. As a couple, Hubbs & I have never camped. We have never been invited to camp, either, and I attribute this to the fact that we are not the "camping type;" everyone we know is aware that our most recent "holidays" have all involved trips to Vancouver, or Victoria, or other urban destinations. The invitation was surprising, and ye
t intriguing simply from the novelty of our never having camped together. The fact that we would be doing so with seasoned campers that we adore made the offer all the more attractive and appealing.

So, in my excitement, I began to shop around for some nice camping gear (this is how I respond to being excited - I shop). Figuring that since we're not very good at roughing it, we should do so with the most state-of-the-art equipment possible; this wo
uld make the experience all the more enjoyable (or at the very least, less unpleasant from a "roughing it" standpoint). I had my self-inflating queen-sized air mattress, Columbia 6-man tent, ground sheet, lantern, and Coleman deluxe sleeping bags all picked out and ready to buy when I showed the gear list to Hubbs, complete with prices.

He was not down with it at all. His rationale was that for a first-time camping trip, we needed to do it on the cheap in case we hated it and decided nev
er to camp again. Investing $500+ on gear for *one* camping trip was not his idea of a worthwhile expenditure, so he strongly suggested that if we wanted to go, we had to do it within a budget. He gave me the figure. I almost cried. The budget he proposed for *everything* (excluding alcohol) wasn't even enough to cover the cost of the tent and the sleeping bags! I thought the trip was not going to happen.

Swallowing my champagne-and-caviar tastes, I decided to try to work with Hubbs' numbers. I was not pleased to do so, but I figured that since camping is supposed to be about roughing it, that I would make a whole-hearted attempt to be rugged. I hit up the Wal-Mart site in search of cheap gear. Lo and behold, I found it! The Wal-Mart 6-piece Adult Camping Combo, which comes with a 10' x 6.5' tent, 2 mild-weather sleeping bags, a cooler bag, and a tent light, for the whopping cost of $89.77. Don't ask me if this thing will really keep us warm or repel water; I have no idea. Good news is that it is made by North Pole, who makes the Columbia line of outdoor gear. Bad news is that I should probably still seam-seal it with some good material *just in case.*

Next came our air mattress, also from Wal-Mart. We decided to go with a double-sized matt instead of a queen-sized one since our tent was so small. Cost? $19.77.

Then came the arm chairs; $14.99/chair from Zellers. Nothing fancy, but a full-back model with a wide enough seat for my butt and a cup holder for my yummy drinks.

We're still in the process of gathering the rest of our materials (ground sheet, tarp, etc.) but at least I am within budget so far. That said, this is already going to be a "rough" experience since I've had to sacrifice my highly-acclaimed, well-reviewed tried and true pro gear. I'll keep you updated on the saga of my camping trip as the cheap and economical details unfold.

BTW - any recommendations on great gear? If this trip is successful, Hubbs has promised that we can slowly start to accumulate more luxurious and high-end equipment, and I do anticipate a successful trip. ;)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Emotionally Involved with My Virtual Pet


So my dear sweet Hubbs, in a bid to get me more involved in Nintendo DS gaming, got me the game "Nintendogs." For those of you who are as blissfully unaware as I was, it's a virtual pet game where you can buy a pet puppy, feed and wash it, teach it tricks and enter trick competitions, and take it for walks in the virtual world of your DS.

I decided to give the game a go so that Hubbs' efforts wouldn't be wasted. I got myself a cute male Shih-Tzu named Duncan and started doing the basic things with this dog, like feeding and petting it. A mere 5 days into gaming, my mind has gone to mush and I am taking the game far too seriously. I religiously feed, water, and walk my pup, and when Hubbs is even mildly abusive to his virtual doggie I get screaming mad. He's not allowed to touch mine, either.

So what is it about these virtual animal/pet games that gets people so emotionally involved? I mean, I remember the days of Tamagotchi and how these young girls would cry or get downright suicidal if their digital pet got sick or died. Keep in mind, the Tamagotchi display was a simple nearly black-and-gray image. It wasn't entirely interactive and most certainly wasn't convincing in its look and feel. My Nintendog, however, looks like a dog and acts like a dog and is absolutely adorable (and interactive).

Yeah, I know; they're cute. Hubbs has a pug and I have the Shih-Tzu. But wait...what am I saying?! They aren't real! I am an educated adult, damnit! I know that this is not a real dog, but the end product of some very fine code and graphic design. So why am I getting attached to my virtual pup and speaking of it as though I had a pet? The psychology behind it is a little hard to understand, and possibly unhealthy, but I have yet to unlock the puzzle of my emotional attachment to this game. Until I do so, however, I will keep feeding and walking and caring for my "pet."

Thankfully in Nintendogs, neglected pets just run away. I think I would lose my mind if Duncan died. :(

Monday, July 02, 2007

The Long-Weekend Long Monday Meme

1 comments you go! =)

Are you:

A cuddler? Yes, but not when it gets to be too warm with a comforter beneath/on top of you *and* a cuddler beside you.
A morning person? Yes, but only after I have a few minutes to myself.
Are you a perfectionist? So I've been told, yes.
An only child? No. One of 4.
Catholic: In spirit. ;)
In your pajamas? No.
Currently suffering from a broken heart? Not at all!
Okay styling other people's hair? Yes...I even secretly enjoy it a little bit.
Left handed? Right handed.
Addicted to MySpace? I don't have one of those accounts. I am addicted to Facebook, though.
Shy around the opposite gender? Not at all! :)
Loud? Very.

Do you:

Bite your nails? Not at the moment...I have gel nails.
Get paranoid at times? Depends on what. Yes, sometimes.
Currently regret something that you have said/done? Not really.
Curse frequently when you get mad? Yes, sometimes. I try not to, though!
Enjoy country music? Nope.
Enjoy jazz music? Very much so. Hubbs is a jazzaholic and it's rubbing off on me.
Enjoy smoothies? Not really; I prefer to chew my calories. Therein lies my ruin as a dieter.
Enjoy talking on the phone? Not as much as when I was a teenager.
Have a lot to learn? Absolutely.
Have a pet? I wish. It would be a cute little Morkie or Shihtzu. I do have a Nintendog right now though (yes, geeky I know).
Have a tendency to fall for the "wrong" person? No, I only made that mistake once.
Have all your grandparents died? No. I still have a full set on my mom's side, and 3 grandparents on my in-law side.
Have at least one sibling? 3, actually. This is a redundant question.
Have been told that you are smart? Hubbs tells me this all the time.
Have had a broken bone? No, I'm fully intact.
Have Caller I.D. on your phone? That's how we screen you out! ;)

Have you:

Changed a diaper? Yes, but none in the last decade.
Changed a lot over the past year? Not really. You'd better ask Hubbs.
Had friends who have never seen your natural hair color? This *is* my natural colour, thankyouverymuch.
Had surgery? Root canal and wisdom teeth.
Killed anyone? Not yet.
Had your haircut within the last week? No.

Last person who:

Slept in the bed beside you? Hubbs.
Saw you cry? Hubbs.
Went to the movies with you? Hubbs.
You went to the mall with? Hubbs.
You went to dinner with? Hubbs.
You talked to on the phone? Mom-in-law.
Said 'I love you' to you and meant it? Hubbs.
Broke your heart? The guy at the Blue Horizon hotel that told us we had been upgraded to a suite, and then realized he made a mistake and we weren't the people who got the upgrade. I was crushed.
Made you laugh? Hubbs.

Would you rather?

Pierce your nose or tongue? Tongue, but only if I was promised it wouldn't hurt. My Asian nose is too flat for a nice piercing, unfortunately.
Be serious or be funny? Funny. I need to be funnier.
Drink whole or skim milk? Skim. Whole milk is so thick I feel like I am drinking liquid lard. Gross.
Die in a fire or drown? Neither. I'd prefer to die peacefully in my sleep.
Spend time with your parents or enemies? My parents. They are actually a lot of short small doses ;)

About you!

(Then what's the above been all about?)

What time is it? 11:53 p.m. on a Monday night.
Name? Mrs. Loquacious
Nickname(s)? Hubbles, D**G****, T*** P****
Where were you born? Hicksville, Canada
What is your birthdate? I'm a Pisces.
What do you want? Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness, self-control.
Where do you want to live? Vancouver.

Fin. Good night!

Truly More Than Meets the Eye


Okay, I know the title is weak. Don't hate. I just got home from an early viewing (the first show in town) of Transformers: the Movie. As a TF fan-by-association (Hubbs is the hardcore fanboy of the original G1 & G2 goodness), I went mostly because Hubbs invited me and I knew it was a big deal to him.

The line-up was insane, and apparently rumour had it that attendees began lining up 4 hours before the movie was scheduled to start. We showed up a respectable 1.5 hours before show time and managed to scam a decent pair of seats, but waiting in the line-up almost drove me insane and by the time I settled in my chair I was threatening the lives of Hubbs and Michael Bay if the movie disappointed, especially after such a long and unpleasant lining-up experience.

Thankfully, the movie did not disappoint in the least. I won't give anything away since this is worth paying full price to see, but here are my list of pro's about the movie:

- Great action sequences involving vehicle-to-robot-to-vehicle modes, and thrilling battle scenes
- Plot was infused with some non-cheesy humour (and some cheesy humour, but given the movie this is to be expected, non?)
- Well-written robot character development for the good guys
- A believable storyline between the character of Sam and his Camaro (Bumblebee)
- Shia Labeouf was a very likeable human, and much better than the "Spike" character of the original story

That said, there are a few cons to the movie, too, such as:

- Megatron looking like a big bad pile of shredded metal. NOT the Megs of original TF fact, unrecognizable as the character if it wasn't for everyone saying his name
- The romance between the two characters was a little unnecessary; couldn't they just be good friends in a platonic way?!?
- Aside from oogly Megs, the other Decepticons looked a lot alike, IMHO. I couldn't tell them apart and they were all gray, whereas the Autobots were nice and colourful.
- I didn't like the boombox guy.

Overall, though, I was riveted throughout the movie and not once was I taken out of the story. The movie was so well received by the die-hard fans, in fact, that at the end of it the audience actually applauded. I would totally watch the movie again, although I can't imagine the second viewing to be more enjoyable than this first one. Go watch the movie (although perhaps not during the first two weeks of its release; there were some freaky fans wearing TF t-shirts tonight...NOT COOL, people!...and NO, Hubbs was not one of them!). If you want an entertaining, suspenseful, action-packed flick - you just found your "summer blockbuster." ;)