Busch Gardens walk in the past

When I was a wee lad I used to go to Busch Gardens every other month when I would visit my grandparents that lived in Tampa. I, living in Orlando, would always look forward to visiting them for a weekend and having the three of us go the the park. There were rides, games, and shows that kept me entertained for the entire day. Now that I have an 8 year old girl I baby sit attached to me at the hip that wants to go every day, what is it like returning to Busch Gardens for a day of fun now that I am an adult?

Well for starters, everything is exhausting. The bearing heat, the overpriced drinks, the long walks between each attraction, all of it is miserable. When I was a kid spunky and full of energy, I could easily run between each attraction with little to no effort. Now that I am a gross disgusting oozing adult with bad skin and worse face, it’s a marathon just to get from the parking lot to the entrance. Heat bearing down hasn’t been a kin to any suffering since Moses lead the Jews through the desert for decades.

Since I was accompanying my 8 year old companion, she wasn’t nearly tall enough to ride all the rides I am able to. The rides would be the most thrilling thing present at the theme park, but she unfortunately missed the cut on what she could and could not participate in. It was real heartbreaking to see her left out, but I am no stranger to adversity and I simply did not abandon her to ride them myself.

Of course, when it comes to making a profit, theme parks will squeeze every penny out of the customers. Overpriced lunches accompanied with overpriced drinks means that you are paying for a second ticket practically when you are already in. When you go to the main dining hall, there will be certain times you can view a dancing and singing performance show on the gigantic stage at one side of the room. This, of course, means everyone will try to rush in last minute and finding a seat to eat is impossible.

All this being said, what is the point of going to Busch Gardens, let alone any theme park at all? The answer: the happiness you get when you see the look on your kid’s face. The girl I was babysitting was ecstatic the entire day. She loved the food, she lost her mind at the show, she fell in love with the dancing and the singing, she enjoyed all the rides she was tall enough for, and she even didn’t mind the long distance between locations. To her it was all a fun day at the park with the guy she looks up to like a big brother. After all that’s said, to me Busch Gardens is certainly worth it. Busch_Gardens_Tampa_logo.png

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A review of “Logan”, Spoiler free.

As of late, a sudden change has shifted in the super hero movie genre. Now, all of a sudden, film makers realized that the main demographic that they want to reach shouldn’t be just the largest audience they can fit into the seats, but they can actually still make a profit off of a super hero movie that features swearing, blood, and violence. This shift started from the extremely popular feedback the Deadpool movie received and all the money it was able to make, even with it being closed off to kids. That being said, was violence enough to make the movie Logan interesting enough of a change on it’s own? Or was the movie good enough to stand on it’s own legs?

First off, to get this out of the way, yes the violence and bloodshed was very predominant in the film, but it was certainly not the driving force that kept it above water. Violence, gore, swearing, and blood definitely helped define the feeling of certain scenes and gave the movie realistic weight, but the real star of the show was the performance.

Everything about this film was excellent. The atmosphere of the scenes, the sound design, the lighting, the plot, and the acting all came together very nicely. Without spoiling anything I will put each category into it’s simplest forms just to avoid any potential give away.

Plot: Logan, a mutant man now aged and withered after years of abuse, picks up his story years later after the previous X-men installment. He is now working a limo job to pay for a boat that he and the extremely decrepit Professor Xavier will live out at sea for the rest of their days on. When he comes across a woman desperate to get him to take up a job escorting a mutant child to a safe haven for their kind, he firmly refuses and distances himself from all things related. This ends up not happening, and Logan gets himself tied up with all kinds of trouble.
– the plot is really smooth and doesn’t feel forced. Each character feels and behaves how they would react in all the situations they are presented with as the movie goes on.

Scenes: From the desert’s middle of nowhere, to the lights and sounds of the New Vegas strip, Logan and his allies make their way across many loud and exciting venues as they are constantly on the run.
– each scene feels real, like Logan and his team are strangers that are caught in the middle of an even stranger war. From one scene to the other you feel these characters struggle with each step they take to get to their final destination, and you actually do feel the weight behind how much time it takes them to get from point A to B.

Acting: Hugh Jackman plays the disgruntled and exhausted Logan as he must be called back into one more mission, much to his dismay, from the final request of his mentor and friend Charles Xavier. The two must escort a child from Mexico to Dakota to get her into a safe haven just in time to be free from the men tracking her.

– Huge Jackman and Patrick Stewart do an excellent job as their characters. They bring them to life throughout the whole movie. They’ve played these roles before, so returning to them one more time they know what they are doing and they really fill into the shoes once again to give these characters one additional performance they both needed. The child actor that played the girl did a decent job, but with most child actors they either overact or don’t get their feeling across. She was decent through most of the film, but she had a few moments that took me out of the immersion.

Sound: everywhere you went that had moving cars, big cities, loud noises, and action sequences, you really felt like you were there.

-The music, the sounds, the design of the film was just overall really good, fitting, and pleasing.

 

Overall, I have to rate this film a 9/10 and you should definitely go see it when you have the chance.logan.jpg

Local Flea Markets and the small business owner.

This weekend I went to my local flea market just to see what was there. I never go with any intention on finding something, usually it’s just to browse to see if anyone is foolishly throwing away something that I know has a lot of value. It’s almost like a garage sale except much hotter and with extremely unhealthy food that’s easily available.

With flea markets, you could find a real gem of an item, for example a really rare baseball card, and you or the seller might not even know. But when that special person comes by with the unique knowledge of cards, they can pick it up for a few bucks and turn it into a huge profit. I go to these markets looking for unique or rare items of the things that I AM personally knowledgeable of, like rare and expensive Pokemon games or playing cards, or rare and expensive Yugioh games or cards.

While I was at this flea market in particular, a certain booth caught my eye. It was young man, in his mid twenties, on the floor doing spray paints with a couple of tables of his finished work in a ring around him. His style was very unique, similar to the spray paint street art you would see in New York.

When I approached his booth, I noticed that all his works were references to pop culture. Star Wars, Mario, Dragon ball Z, all of it was real iconic “nerd themed” paintings. He mentioned how he was doing a special sale, 20$ for two paintings, because he needed rent money and things were getting tough. After I saw his work, saw him grinding for that cash, and saw him out here working his behind off for just 20 bucks per two paintings, I clicked with him and got this vibe of respect.

He was really into making the deal to his promise, 2 paintings for 20 bucks, even though I only wanted one. He went out of his way to make sure I got one I wanted, and started up a personal commission right there on the spot to make good on his deal.

In the end not only did I get two great pieces of art, but I also realized something: the flea market has more than interesting items and good deals, it has good honest people trying their hardest to make a living. I highly encourage you to check out your local flea markets, because you don’t know WHAT you will find.

 

Symphonic Orchestra takes a spin off classic music and now does classic… video games?

When it comes to famous franchises, one would immediately think of some of the big titans of the industry. Names such as McDonalds, Microsoft, Apple, Sony, and many others might come to mind, but one of the biggest names in video games has to go to the Nintendo company. Off of their success at publishing video games, an even bigger pop culture phenomenon came from their creation: Pokemon.

Pokemon is one of the most well known, if not THE most well known, series of games, television, playing cards, and merchandise out there. Spanning all the way back from 1996 to today, for over 21 years this series has been in the minds and hearts off fans all over the world. With the characters from the series being plastered over ever form of sell-able merchandise, from lunchboxes to hospital IVs, it comes as no surprise that there are some very interesting and unique marketing attempts. One of Pokemon’s newest endeavors comes in the form of a giant symphonic orchestra.

The “Pokemon Symphonic Evolutions” orchestra remasters some of the most iconic tunes that would spill out of the old gray brick game boy that flooded from the speakers and into your ears, and remasters it in full orchestra in an attempt to fill your body with that classic nostalgia. Spanning from the series’ first ever games of Red, Green, and Blue, and extending all the way up to the most recent of Sun and Moon, the orchestra does an excellent recap of the series’ highlights and most iconic themes.

The most recent upcoming showing will be in Orlando, FL, at the Walt Disney Theater, so if you are a fan of Pokemon, Orchestras, or you like making fun of people that can obsess so much over one series, this is a must see event. 2

Interesting leaps: The Path of Exile jump forward.

For those of you that may or may not be too involved with the community of online computer games, this post might be a little hard to sell you on. However, be it that as it may be about video games, it will be less about the game and more about a very interesting concept that you might find you enjoy. So before you might scroll past this, I assure you there’s more than meets the eye.

Path of Exile is a personal computer game that comes across as a quick to learn, hard to master style of game that gives the player a complete and total freedom of how they play. In the game you simply go from point A to point B just completing the main story and little side quests, all from a perspective aerial to your character.

The whole fun of the game is coming up with all kinds of really unique and interesting characters, and the abilities they use to complete the story mode in many different ways. You could have a character that uses magic, then you can alter how the magic is cast, how many times, what directions, the shape, and with other spells at the same time. If not magic, you could have a crazy strong character that uses swords or axes or maces and do all kinds of incredible feats of athleticism all over the battlefield. It pretty much comes down to what your imagination can think of and edit any detail you want.

Now, when it comes to story, it’s displayed in a piece by piece way that unlocks through chapters as you progress through quests. The developers of the game, Grinding Gear Games, usually make a small little piece of content every one to two years. GGG sometimes produces an entire chapter, or just a few new abilities into the game. However, Grinding Gear Games has completely ramped up their style and are introducing not one, but FIVE new chapters of content all at once. It’s going to be one of the largest feats they have implemented and accomplished at once. It’s a huge step forward for the fans, and the producers as well.

GGG has been working on this content behind the scenes for a while, and only just recently coyly released a teaser for the upcoming 5 new parts. It’s their gigantic love letter to the fans as they have finally produced a mass of content worthy to give their game a huge chunk of body and life that it’s been burning on fumes with.

Expect Path of Exile: fall of Oriath this summer.
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