Category Archives: Animals, Pets and Wild

Movie Review: Guardians of the Galaxy

Holy crap have I been a lazy blogger or what?

Well this is the movie that gave me the kick in the pants to get back over here.  I am such a huge Marvel movie fan that I just HAD to see it opening night!  Rest assured, there are no real big spoilers, but if you want to see the movie for yourself without having any tinted glasses, then perhaps you should move along now…


Still with me?  Ok, here’s my opinion of GOTG:  IT SUCKED AND I’M HORRIBLY DISAPPOINTED ABOUT IT.

Sadly, few other critics – professional and regular moviegoers – seem to agree with me, and I have to say I am really surprised by that.  For me, the negative aspects of the film were just so glaring, I could only overlook them for so long for the sake of trying to enjoy the film.  But let me list my problems and then you can decide for yourself…

1. The indestructible, self-charging Walkman… Film opens with the kid version of main character Peter Quill on earth, listening to a Walkman.  Stuff happens and you suddenly remember this is supposed to be a sci-fi movie when he is abducted by aliens (which should be a separate point, but I will just say now that the alien abduction was so jarring from the opening scene, I liken it to a Monty Python bit).  Fast forward 26 years and the kid is now an adult.  Amazingly he is still listening to the same cassette tape on the same Walkman, same headphones.  I immediately turned to my husband and asked where the hell he got replacement batteries for that thing.  And apparently he also obtained the only indestructible Walkman in existence, and this particular cassette tape NEVER wears out after being the ONLY one listened to for 26 years.  Ok, moving on from the Walkman issue.

2. The soundtrack… dear god the soundtrack.  So many more 70s/80s songs that had kickass vibes and they chose the exact opposite.  Of the songs they used, only Cherry Bomb by the Runaways seemed to fit the actual movie.

3. The dialogue is goddamn painful to listen to.  Most of the time it’s hammy, melodramatic, forced, or something equal to prompt an eye roll.  There are a few funny lines, which help, but more often than not I thought the dialogue was almost cringeworthy.  Also, I get that the kid was abducted from Earth in 1988, but the sheer volume of 80s references was irritating and clearly designed to wink at the 40 years olds in the audience.

4. The environment NEVER felt realistic.  The actors looked like they simply walked in front of a green screen to perform.  EVERYTHING looked and felt computer generated, and of course there is going to be a lot of that when you’re making a space movie, but there has to be enough to make it feel real.

5. The characters I barely cared anything about.  Of the 5 main characters, the CGI raccoon was probably the best, and – sadly – the most emotive.  Bradley Cooper did a great job voicing Rocket, applause to him.  I also liked Zoe Saldana’s character, but found her development lacking, would have liked to know even more than they revealed about her.  Groot, the tree guy, was also sweet and funny, but they wasted Vin Diesel’s talent there…  Groot says 4 words the entire movie, you couldn’t even recognize Diesel’s voice, nor his features to justify using him.  Peter Quill acts like a 23 year old frat boy playing Indiana Jones meets Han Solo (and not pulling it off), and I never grow to like him much.  I thought Drax was a completely unnecessary character, not even sure why he was there.

6. That little trinket… As another critic pointed out, the object of desire that the bad guys want and the good guys try and keep the bad guys from amounts to a stone inside a softball-sized metal orb, or The One Ring inside the Hellraiser box.  Been there, done that.

7. The bad guys never really felt all that BAD.  Karen Gillan’s character was great to watch, when she was on screen, but we saw far too little of her and I dearly would have loved to know more since she and Zoe Saldana were “sisters”.  Ronin… Thanos… meh, yawn.

8. The ocean is in jeopardy, so let’s make sure this puddle is safe! They are billed as the “Guardians of the GALAXY” – at best, they saved what looked like San Francisco from the Star Trek universe.  At least with Superman, Metropolis got wasted but it was clearly in the process of saving the rest of the Earth.  This doesn’t feel like such a grand scale save, but good job, guys!

9. Ummmm, wha…?  The hidden scene at the end left me with mix feelings.  No spoilers, but I was equally laughing and astounded by the ridiculousness of it since it seemed so WAY out of place.

Overall I really felt the movie was far from fitting in with the established Marvel movie universe.  These guys were a bumbling comedy troupe rather than serious heroes.  I don’t know why so many people think this is so awesome, I just thought it was a complete letdown.

1.5 out of 5.  And that’s being generous.

Product Review: Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box

Yes, I am reviewing a litter box!  I feel silly reviewing a litter box, but this one actually deserves it!

Top to bottom:  Loki, Asia and Meep.  I fear they are plotting my demise.

Top to bottom: Loki, Asia and Meep. I fear they are plotting my demise.

I am a cat person.  I adore my cats and I get the impression they tolerate me just fine.  We pamper them with good food and fun places to sit.  Notice the “Taj Meh-Hall” (“meh” is the sound Loki makes) – we built that for them, and they seem to enjoy being up high away from the dog.

We recently brought Meep into our little family.  She was a feral kitten that roamed near our place, and when we noticed that the cats were starving, we decided to trap them and bring them to the shelter in hopes of rehabilitating them and giving them a shot at a home.  Of the five we trapped, Meep was the only one adoptable, and we decided we would be the ones to bring her home.

She stayed in my daughter’s room with a small litter box, food and water, but she soon grew adventurous and it seemed silly to keep her trapped in the one room.  The problem was that the dog was discovering the joy of what’s left in litter boxes, so we couldn’t just leave the door open, and the other two cats use a box in the basement.  Since we have so many things in the basement that Meep could potentially get trapped in (that the older cats are completely indifferent to), I didn’t want her down there.  So we needed to find a solution.

OPsclbAfter poking around a bit, I discovered the Omega Paw Roll and Clean self-cleaning litter box.  Amazon calls it the Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box, but it’s kind of misleading… it doesn’t clean itself automatically like the electric cleaners.  The design is pretty simple, though.  Cat enters on the one side and uses it like any other covered litter box.  To clean the waste, you literally roll the litter box gently clockwise until it’s upside-down, then gently roll back to the original position.  The unused litter sifts through a grate, while the waste falls into the tray, which can be removed and dumped into a trash bin.  When I saw that it got very high marks and over 2500 reviews, I figured that many people couldn’t be wrong.

I got the larger version, since that’s what most people recommended for multiple or large cats.  I think we COULD have gotten away with the regular size, but I don’t regret getting the larger one.  I also got a clumping litter that a reviewer had recommended and I back up their positive review of it – Dr. Elsey’s Ultra Precious Cat Litter for multiple cats works very well.

I set up the box, which was a bit of a chore initally.  If you can see, there is one clip in the front (right next to the opening), two on the left side, and one in the back.  They are molded plastic clips, and you have to slide them until you feel them lock into place.  Once that was done, we let the cats know it was available and waited to see how it would work out.

Surprisingly, the box lives up to the reviews.  It is very easy to roll the box over and the tray indeed catches all the waste and makes it easy to dispose of.  I roll it once or twice daily (I try to keep it as clean as possible because the dog will stick his head in there looking for goodies – yuck!).  Because it’s so easy to clean, there is no cat box smell, although I admit we take the kitchen trash out a little quicker than we used to.

boltwingBut I do take issue with the clips.  The negative parts of reviews I read all seem to center around the same weak point – those plastic clips.  They are difficult to lock into place, and I quickly found that the clip in the front just refused to stay locked.  Whenever I rolled the litter box, there was enough pressure to pop the clip out of the locking position and cause the top and bottom to separate a little.  Because the clean litter was trapped in the grated section, it didn’t mean it was a disaster, but some loose particles did end up on the floor.  I contacted the manufacturer about the issue, and they offered to send me a couple of replacement clips.  I appreciate it, but I strongly recommended that they look into replacing those clips with the wingnuts and bolts commonly found on animal carriers.  It got so irritating that you can see I replaced it with a 5/16 wingnut and bolt.  The bolt is 3/4″ long, I probably could have used a 1/2″ long bolt.  This appears to have solved the problem I had with the plastic clip, so I really hope the manufacturer considers this for future models.

Overall I give this litter box a 4.7 rating out of 5, most of what was taken off was the issue with the one front clip.  The other thing to remember is that when you roll the box back to the original position, you might want to tilt it further to the left to get more of the clean litter out of the grate.  Aside from that, this box is great, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone with multiple cats!

The Infinite Cat Project

Just for fun, I present you with the Infinite Cat Project, a website of cats looking at cats looking at cats.

My pretty girl Asia was immortalized on the site back on January 31, 2005:

Cat #676: Asia contemplating Leon admiring Milo…

Rainbow Kitty Wins!

SpiritHoods. Cute, but OMG!

One of my favorite sites to surf is HelloGiggles, and ocassionally they highlight a funky item they’ve come across.  Right now it’s the SpiritHood, which is a cute little animal hat/scarf combo.  My first thought was “that’s so silly, I could totally rock that!” and began to look through their various styles.  I mean, who could resist this:…?

Seriously, how cute, right?

So I thought, if it’s priced at $50 or under, I’d give it serious consideration just for the unique factor.  So I clicked on one and saw that they are asking…


But hey, you get FREE SHIPPING (for orders over $150!)

So, if anyone has absolutely nothing better to do with their money, please feel free to get me a Grey Wolf version.




(Bear was tranq’d, he landed safely.)

For all the bodyworkers out there…

saddest thing I’ve seen today

A BALD RACCOON.  No, really, the poor thing is bald.  Knit him a sweater!

now I know what I want for my birthday…


now my CAT is a meme!

I recently discovered my dog was a meme, now – not to be outdone by the dog – my cat has decided to join the fray!

Loki, The Destroyer of Worlds and Eater of Children

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