Archive for April, 2013

The Voice s4 – Knockout Rounds Teams Adam & Shakira

30 Apr

The knockout rounds are quick- only two nights to cut the number of singers in half. Only four from each team will go to the live rounds.

Night one was Teams Adam and Shakira. The talent level was high. And while there are some choices I would have made differently from the coaches, I often had the same assessment of the singers as they did. They (being the experts and all) were just looking for different things from the singers than I was.

I did like all risks taken by the singers and am looking forward to the live rounds.

Your Money Monday: Is Owning Cheaper?

29 Apr

When dealing with money, people often think it’s about the numbers, that you can do the math an instantly and empirically know if you have gained money or lost money. But that’s not quite true. Everything, even numbers, are subject to our perception of them.

Much like the arguments that “it’s cheaper to buy than to rent” right now, but only if you have a 10-20% down payment saved up (which is usually a pretty hefty chunk of money), we are facing the question of whether it is actually cheaper to buy and sell at a loss than to rent.

Movie Review: The Hunger Games

26 Apr

Finally saw The Hunger Games. Jennifer Lawrence has gotten so much hype since that movie, I was not certain if I would like her in it, but I thought it was very well done. I thought they did a great job making you uncertain if the feelings between Katniss and Peeta were real or part of the show they were putting on.

I do think I may need to read the books, though, to understand the world better. I found it hard to believe that the districts were still paying tribute after all these years. Why hadn’t they already rebelled?

NASA Has Been Cool My Entire Life

25 Apr

A lot of attention gets paid to what NASA is doing now, both in the news and here on this blog. And rightly so. The Mars Rover missions are amazing and deserve the attention. But what we forget sometimes is exactly how long NASA has been doing amazing things, and the timelines for those missions.

The Voyager missions were launched in 1977. That is over 35 years ago, and they are still going strong. In fact, Voyager 1 is now the farthest man-made object from the Earth, over 18 billion kilometers away and still moving, and we can ride along.

The Voice s4 – Battle Rounds Night 4

24 Apr

Last night of battles, only one steal on the table. We know it has to be used because otherwise the teams won’t be even. Usher has to use his last steal. When will he use it? Naturally, the producers leave that for the final battle of the night.

I was once again happy with all of the choices, including Shakira’s in that final battle. Mary really does have an amazing sweetness to her voice.

However, I was once again disappointed with the producers for not showing us all the battle rounds. Do these artists not make it past the knockouts?

The Voice s4 – Battle Rounds Night 3

23 Apr

Monday night’s battle rounds weren’t really surprising. There were a couple of times when I thought a steal might happen when it didn’t, but no one went home who I really thought needed to stay. They had hyped Usher’s steal so much with promo bits of “can he do that”, that I actually thought Adam might try and use a steal on his own person, but obviously that did not happen.

After being rejected a second time, Usher finally used his first steal, and heading into the final night of battles, he is the only one with a steal left.

The Voice s4 – Battle Rounds Night 2

17 Apr

I like seeing good battles, I do, but do I really need to see parts of one battle three different times and pretty much not see other battles at all? My guess is they don’t show the ones where the decision was easy for the coach, but by not showing us their battles (especially if we also didn’t see their blind audition), the show is essentially robbing them of finding a following- something that’s necessary in order to win the show.

Perhaps we could have less “how they got here” and more of the actual battles and all the contestants.

The Voice s4 – Battle Rounds Night 1

16 Apr

Three steals in the first night- with Shakira using both of hers. That’s going to make for some interesting conundrums as we get to the end of the battle rounds. I was very surprised by Blake’s steal, as it seemed like she was incredibly uncomfortable on stage and didn’t, to me, seem very good.

However, what the Battle Rounds always seem to teach me is that what comes across on the TV has to be very different from watching the performances live, because I am often surprised by the coaches’ decisions.

Still, good people always make it to the end.

Texting While Driving

11 Apr

We all have bad driving habits. We talk on the phone, pay more attention to the kids in the back seat than the road in front of us, sometimes, we pay more attention to the radio than to traffic. I’m not a perfect driver, or a perfect anything, for that matter. I don’t expect I ever will be. But we need to try and cut down on some of the more dangerous distractions.

Yet another young life was lost to texting while driving. The text wasn’t a big deal, just a mundane conversation that cost a young man his life.

The Voice s4 – Blind Auditions Night 6

10 Apr

The night started with each coach only having one spot remaining on their team, so you knew it was going to be a night of tough decisions. I remember season one where the coaches didn’t fill their teams from the first go round and invited a few people with no chair turns to come back. That hasn’t happened since, and I always wonder if there are singers that were invited to the blind auditions who never get a chance to perform.

Different this season is that coaches whose teams were filled did NOT face front. Chairs remained facing the audience.

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