Movie Review: Star Trek Into Darkness

I am not now nor have I ever been, a Trekkie. However, I’m pretty sure I’ll watch anything J. J. Abrams makes. Damn can that guy (and his people) tell a story.

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Movie Candy

Also, the acting is great. I mean I love everyone in this cast, even the bad guys. Was that Robo Cop? While I thoroughly enjoy Simon Pegg as Scotty, Bones will always be my favorite character in this new set of movies. Although John Cho’s Sulu comes in a close second because he’s kick ass.

This movie, like the last, has the right mix of action, comedy, and storytelling. (Kaaaaaaahhnnnn!). I loved how it started “in medias res”. Seconds into the flick and I’m on the edge of my seat.

Not to spoil anything for anyone, but at one point, I thought, “Why is there a Jedi in this movie?” Apparently, he’s a Sith.

While I haven’t yet seen Iron Man 3 (I will), this movie is a great way to kick of the summer block buster season.

In space, no one can hear your frustration

Did you know that there are missing moon rocks?  Seriously.  Yesterday I read this article in the Sacramento Bee about how some moon rocks from Apollo 11 mysteriously turned up in a storage room in Minnesota.

My cousin said it best, “Well this is a little ridiculous. Who misplaces moon rocks?”

Apparently, 11 other states can’t find their moon rocks either.  What I didn’t know is that there were rocks brought back from the Apollo 11 mission and the Apollo 17 mission.  Yes, I’m a bad American.  I should know those things.

But, I have Google, so I can learn that which I do not know…except when I can’t really find it.  I found this site called Collect Space that lists the Apollo 17 and the Apollo 11 rocks and their known locations across the planet. Of course, since it’s not an official NASA sanctioned page, I tend to have my doubts about the authenticity of the information, but it’s not Wikipedia, so I guess I’ll allow it.

What did I learn through my reading?  No one is allowed to sell moon rocks in the United States.  At least, that’s what the AP article said. This article in the Star Tribune shocked me and I sort of want to see this guy’s research:

Iffert said his research found that most moon rocks from the Apollo 11 and 17 missions that were given out by Nixon as goodwill gestures are unaccounted for.

Most of the rocks are missing?!?  That’s a tragedy if it’s true.  Why can’t we keep track of our moon rocks, America?  Can’t we get organized and set up a filing system?

When I tried to find where California’s moon rock is currently located, I found out that some lady tried to sell a moon rock last year.  They met in a Denny’s.  Denny’s!  Everyone knows if you want to sell a moon rock, you’ve got to go to a Johnny Rockets.

Partial Eclipse of the Sun

On Sunday there is an eclipse. Why am I so fascinated by these celestial events? Maybe because they always seem to be visible only in far off lands I’d never visit. This time, I could drive up the hill (that’s a reference to Lake Tahoe or Reno for you non-Sacramentans) and see the moon pass in front of the sun.

They say that scientists no longer learn anything during an eclipse. That sort of makes me sad. We can’t have figured everything out. There seem to be so many questions left about the universe.

Now the question is do I go and hunt down a special pair of solar eclipse goggles or do I make the homemade cardboard box pinhole contraption that has baffled me since I was a kid?

What I would really like to do is a last minute trek to see the full effect of the eclipse, but since I refuse to do that alone and have no one to accompany me, I will let the dream continue to be a dream.