Thursday, 1 October 2015

A place without books ...

A house without books is like a room without windows.
- Horace Mann.

A room without books is like a body without a soul.
- Marcus Tullius Cicero.

Math Lessons that are a sign of our times:


GANG/CREW NAME____________________


1. Lajames has an AK-47 with a 200-round clip. He usually misses 6 of every 10 shots and he uses 13 rounds per drive-by shootin. How many mofos can Lajames ice on a drive-by before he gotta reload?

2. Leroy has 2 ounces of cocaine. If he sells an 8 ball to Antonio for $320 and 2 grams to Juan for $85 per gram, what be the street value of the rest of his shit?

3. Dwayne pimps 3 ho's. If the price be $85 per trick, how many tricks per day must each ho turn to support Dwayne's $800 per day Crack habit?

4. Raul wants to cut the pound of cocaine he bought for $40,000 to make 20% profit. How many ounce bags will he need to make to gets the 20% upside?

5. Ray-Ray gets $2000 for a stolen BMW, $1500 for stealing a Corvette, and $1000 for a 4 x 4. If he steals 1 BMW, 2 Corvettes and 3 4x4's, how many more Corvettes must he steal to make the 10k for his brother's bail?

6. Pedro got 6 years for murder. He also got $10,000 for the hit. If his common-law wife spends $100 of his hit money per month, how much money will be left when he gets out?

7. If an average can of spray paint covers 22 square feet and the average letter is 3 square feet, how many letters can be sprayed with three 8 oz. Cans of spray paint with 20% paint left over?

8. Tyrone knocked up 4 girls in the gang. There be 20 girls in his gang. What be the percentage of bitches Tyrone knocked up?

9. Lafawnda is a lookout for the gang. Lafawnda also has a Boa Constrictor that eats 5 rats per week and a cost of $5 per rat. If Lafawnda makes $700 a week as a lookout, how many weeks can she feed her snake with one week's income?

10. Marvin steals Juan's skateboard. As Marvin skates away at 15mph, Juan loads his 357 Magnum piece. If it takes Juan 20 seconds to load his piece, how far away will Marvin be when he gets whacked?

Man on a Ledge [2012]:

Apparently despondent and intent on taking a swan-dive to end his misery, an ex-cop and convict-on-the-lam checks into a hotel, and climbs out on the window ledge on the 21st floor.
At the same time he is up there, while the crowd, cops, TV cameras, and news reporters gather, a heist is underway in a neighboring building.
It isn’t long before we discover the modus operandi behind the would-be-suicide is just distraction tactics.
There is some notable acting talent on display, with Elizabeth Banks, Sam Worthington, Génesis Rodriguez, Jamie Bell, Edward Burns, Ed Harris, William Sadler, Anthony Mackie, Titus Welliver, Felix Solis, and Kyra Sedgwick, all putting in good performances. Sadly, the script is corny and the plot-twists are contrived. While Man on a Ledge was enjoyable, various scenes reminded me of movies I’d previously seen. Anyone familiar with: The Taking of Pelham One Two Three [1974], Inside Man [2006], Mission: Impossible [1996], Phone Booth [2002], Dog Day Afternoon [1975] and Die Hard [1988], will notice the similarities in Man on a Ledge. Even the dialogue about the red line reminded me of Juggernaut [1974].
Man on a Ledge is entertaining, in a light-weight and brainless way, but it still felt like rehash of those previous movies ... and that I have a problem with.
In the end, Man on a Ledge, as a thriller, wasn’t very thrilling and there are clichés and plot-holes-a-plenty.

Sunshine [2007]:

The Tag-line to Sunshine is stark and true: If the sun dies, so do we.
The premise is stated in the opening monologue:

Our sun is dying. Mankind faces extinction. Seven years ago the Icarus project sent a mission to restart the sun but that mission was lost before it reached the star. Sixteen months ago, I, Robert Capa, and a crew of seven, left earth frozen in a solar winter. Our payload: a stellar bomb with a mass equivalent to Manhattan Island. Our purpose: to create a star within a star. Eight astronauts strapped to the back of a bomb. My bomb. Welcome to the Icarus Two.

Sunshine is an intense, intelligent and realistic science-fiction thriller, made more compelling because it could one day become science-fact if our nearest star does start to die ... which, indeed, it inexorably will. Their already dangerous mission: to reignite the sun by exploding a gigantic nuclear bomb at its core, is further complicated when they answer a distress beacon from the ill-fated Icarus I craft and uncover what really happened to the crew of that earlier failed mission. Sunshine concentrates on the human aspect of its characters, how they deal with the closed-in environment of the ship as their mission takes years to complete, the pressure of being together when personalities clash, the looming threat of extinction if their mission fails, the sense of isolation – at being so far from home, ultimately leading to insanity, religious mania, and murder for one character.
I love everything about this movie, but I have chosen one scene in particular, the death of Kaneda, for its technical brilliance, powerful soundtrack, and for the depth and intensity of the emotion through the faultless acting. Seldom in movies is a death scene so genuinely moving.
I have left out the majority of the intercut scenes on board the ship and focused mainly on Capa and Kaneda’s section on the solar shield.
Cassie is played by Rose Byrne, Searle by Cliff Curtis, Harvey by Troy Garity, and the voice of Icarus, the on-board computer AI, is voiced by Chipo Chung.

Scene: Kaneda’s death.
On board Icarus II.
Under stress, concentrating on getting the trajectory right, Trey [Benedict Wong] forgets to re-align the panels on the forward protective shield. Solar winds cause a hydraulic burn-out in four of the reflective panels, causing them to remain open.
Captain Kaneda [Hiroyuki Sanada], and physicist Capa [Cillian Murphy], go EVA to manually close each panel.

Cassie takes manual control, tilting the ship and the shield to provide enough shade from the sun for the men to work on the panels:

Kaneda and Capa successfully close the first panel:

The crew congratulate them and they move on to repair the other three panels:

The euphoria among the crew is short-lived: a fire breaks out in the ship’s oxygen garden.
Kaneda points out that the priority is to protect the pay-load and orders the on-board computer, Icarus, to resume control. Icarus begins the process of returning the shield to its original position:

Kaneda and Capa race to close the panels before they are killed and the ship is destroyed.
The crew are forced to flood the oxygen garden with O2, causing a flash that makes the fire burn itself out:

Realizing his fate and that he has to sacrifice himself to save Capa and the rest of the crew, Kaneda orders Capa back to the airlock:

Eighty-nine percent of shield in full sunlight.

Capa, go back. I’ll finish this.

Please, I can do this.


Capa returning to airlock. Do you copy? Capa returning to airlock. Do you copy?

Copy, Capa. Hurry.

Ninety-one percent of shield in full sunlight.

Ninety-four percent of shield in full sunlight.

Captain? Captain? I’m at the edge of the shield. Do you copy? Captain, you must leave now. Captain?

Ninety-seven percent of shield in full sunlight.

Final panel closing. The shield is secure.

You have to move now. Captain, it’s right on you.

Kaneda’s not gonna make it.

You have to move! You have to move now!

It’s too far.

Captain, move! Why isn’t he moving?

Kaneda, what do you see?

Searle, tell him to move!

Kaneda, what can you see?

Searle, do you copy?




Kaneda screams.


Capa screams as he barely manages to swing below the safety of the shield.

Shield rotation complete.