Monday, December 18, 2017

Reinvent Yourself: Feel Like a Kid Again

GTO's Thoughts:

I saw "The Last Jedi" this weekend.

And I was not disappointed.

"The Last Jedi" is full of wonder, excitement and, most of all, respect for the original trilogy.

And for these reasons, it's the best Star Wars film in 30+ years. *

I'm happy to be a fan of STAR WARS again.

Since Chris Gore (over at Film Threat) summed it up so well, why don't you read his review of the movie.

Click on Luke.
Film Threat Chris Gore Review of the Last Jedi
If you scroll down to the comment section of Chris Gore's review, you'll find a quick comment by yours truly.

I'm currently the only commentator under his review.

Why? I don't know.

Film Threat rocks!

Another group who had insightful things to say about this film were c|net's staffers from around the world.

I really liked hearing the different thoughts and opinions expressed.

Click the C-Net headline:

'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' best and worst: c|net global review
Now, I had some issues with "The Last Jedi" - a few in fact.

But there was so much great stuff in it, it's hard to focus on the negatives.

"The Last Jedi" feels like the final, third film in a grand trilogy.

It's epic and satisfying and well-made.

And it feels like a completion to the original films.

Please bear in mind, I was massively disappointed in the prior four films (those helmed by J.J. Abrams & George Lucas).

Upon viewing the prior "The Force Awakens" I declared that Star Wars was dead to me.

Not kidding.

I was done with Star Wars.

Ask my buddy Larry (Tweet him @theguestroompod).

Or my buddy Shawn (Tweet him @SVashaw).

They'll tell you.

I take this shit seriously.

So any new Star Wars film would have to come a long way to erase the anger and sadness I've felt over the last 30 years as a beloved sci-fi trilogy was ripped off, spat upon and robbed entirely of its magic.

The original Star Wars films had such a hold on me that they convinced me to devote my life to movies. To study film in college. To work in the film business.

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away.

So for me to overlook the various flaws of "The Last Jedi" and to actually feel the hope in this film, and to relive the dreams of my teen years at the same time, is a major emotional achievement for me.

I'm excited to give "The Last Jedi" an 8 out of 10.

And the best part?

I will not argue with you if you want to rate it a 10.

(If you had spoken so highly of "The Phantom Menace" or "The Force Awakens" I would've politely never talked to you again for the rest of my life.)

So for the time being, I've turned away from the cynicism of the Dark Side that had been growing in me for 30 years.

I'm thankful for this cinematic return to the Light Side.

I feel like a kid again.

Thanks for reading.


* Apologies to "Rogue One" which is a good (8/10) Star Wars film. But because it exists outside the Skywalker line of stories, and because my heart is so attached to the original trilogy of characters, I consider it an outlier in the canon in the best possible way. No offense intended.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Reinvent Yourself: Relive Summer with an Easy Sangria Recipe

GTO's Thoughts:

I get into these moods.

Maybe once or twice a year.

Where I just need to remember summer.

Usually it's in September, October or November.

Winter is approaching.

June, July & August have faded into sweet memory.

My tan is long gone.

My skin barely remembers being licked by the warmth of the sun.

I barely put a dent in my bottle of sunscreen this year.

I didn't get enough time in my brother's pool.

I didn't get enough sand, didn't get enough surf.

And - dammit! - I have no memories of a sweet summer romance.

My John Travolta did not meet his Olivia Newton-John.
My Frankie Avalon did not find his Annette Funicello.
My Barbara Hershey never became the wind beneath her Bette Midler's wings.

Those warm, sunny months have come and gone, all in the blink of an eye.

And I miss them.

But there are a number of ways to remember summer.

You could try losing your $500 Nike glasses in the waves of Ocean City, Maryland in July 2012.

Like I did!

OR -

Even better,

Ignore the lessons of Ocean City 2012!

And lose another pair of $500 glasses in the gorgeous waters of Playa ParaĆ­so in Mexico's Riviera Maya in July 2017. **

Yep! That's what I did!

So the summers of 2012 and 2017 are LOCKED in my brain!



And as winter approaches in the Northeastern United States, how do I relive such wonderful summer memories as losing $1000 in prescription eyewear to the oceans of the world?!


What helps me get drunk are sweet and colorful adult beverages!

THIS is where SANGRIA comes in, because:


I make it from time to time when I'm desperately trying to hold onto summer for a few cold, getting colder, weekends this time of year.

It's easy to make sangria.


It's quick, delicious and refreshing.

If you don't like fruit, you're outta luck. More for me.

If you click on my photo below, you'll be taken to my 60-second easy sangria recipe.

Easy Sangria Recipe - Greg's Helpful Videos

** Upon losing expensive eyewear for the 2nd time in five years, I was completely and utterly embarrassed.

My family was there to witness it BOTH times!

And I was also very angry at myself.


And there was swearing to be had.

Lots of swearing.

Lots of LOUD swearing.

And there were children everywhere!

And. I. Didn't. Care.

I was swearing with no thought of social decorum.

I was uttering profanities in the clear, warm waters of Mexico,

(Proud of myself, I am not.)


After about 15 minutes, I finally calmed down and surrendered to the situation.

It was simple: I was going to be legally blind for my entire vacation in Mexico.

And then!

My brother, Doug, stepped on something buried in the sand near the shore.

He reached down, expecting to be bit by a crustacean, but instead he found my glasses.

It was amazing. Really amazing.

I'm still blown away by it.

My brother found my glasses!

They could have gone deeper into the Caribbean Sea.

They could have gone parallel to the shore.

Never getting closer, never getting further away, just keep moving to the right. Or to the left.

They also could have drifted just a few feet away from where I had lost them to the large wave.

Into water that was too deep to gain footing.

But -

They headed towards shore.

Where my brother was able to find them.



As I sip my sangria,

This is one of the great memories I'll relive from the summer of 2017.

Thanks for reading!


What are your memories from the summer of 2017?

Monday, September 11, 2017

Reinvent Yourself: Help Others Solve Netflix Silverlight Error N8010.

GTO's Thoughts:

I was having trouble getting Netflix to work on my MacBook.

I kept getting Silverlight Error N8010.

Which means Safari's Private Browsing Mode was supposedly restricting Netflix from storing settings on my computer.

But there was more to it than that!

I finally figured everything out, made a quick video, and wanted to pass it along.

Just click the photo and you'll be taken to my YouTube video (3 min).

If this solution helps you, let me know. Thanks, GTO.

Using Safari to Watch Netflix? Getting Silverlight-Netflix Error N8010? Here's a FIX!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

25 Ways to Reinvent Yourself: Form a Board of Advisers

Just as a corporation has a team of people who represent an array of specialties - marketing, finance, sales - an individual should have a similar set of personal advisers, according to Marti Smye, author of Is It Too Late to Run Away and Join the Circus?  (MacMillan, 1998).

This informal board should be made up of friends whom you respect and admire, whose opinions you value, and who would be willing to offer you their counsel when you need it.

[From "25 Ways to Reinvent Yourself" published in Modern Maturity January - February 2000,
edited by Greg Olszewski]

Monday, March 27, 2017

Reinvent Yourself: A Motivational Lament

Why are my moments of highest motivation always, ALWAYS, just before I have to go to work - or just before I go to bed?

A smart friend of mine suggested that maybe it's a survival reflex. That our subconscious knows that's the only safe time to inspire us because it's the easiest kind of motivation to get out of.

"You have energy. You could start that thing you wanted to start. But darn! - you have to go to work! Oh well, we'll get 'em later, Tiger. Have a great day!"

"Thanks, subconscious! You have a great day too."

And you work.

And you intend to give that thing you wanted to start another go.

But at the end of the day, a funny thing happens.

Your work is done, you've eaten, spent time with the family & friends and now, now it's time for sweet sleep.

You've waited all day for this. The stress is gone. You're relaxed. Your inhibitions are down. You're in the twilight of consciousness, drifting off, and..


A great idea hits you!

And your subconscious knew one was coming all along. But it reminds you:

"You have energy. You could start that thing you wanted to start. But darn! you have to sleep! Oh well, we'll get 'em later, Tiger. Have a great night!"

"Darn you, subconscious. Right again. You have a great night too!"

So you'll give that thing you wanted to start another go.

In the morning. Before work.

But for now, zzzz :: drool :: zzzz :: snore :: zzzz!