Tag Archive: Felicia Flick

Anders Helstrup, Norwegian Skydiver Records Meteorite

Anders Helstrup, Norwegian Skydiver Records Meteorite

Last week a Norwegian skydiver, Anders Helstrup, captured a first ever video of a meteorite that shot past him right after he deployed his parachute. Apparently the search for the rock still continues. (See the video and associated article linked to the image above)

Just like in my “Ground Control To Major Tom” blog about the first music video made in space, this is another groundbreaking celestial cinema first! Never before has a meteorite been recorded in mid-air after its light has gone out. It would be extremely difficult to try to make such a thing happen, given that it is unknown when or where a meteorite will hit our atmosphere. However, with the abilities of new technology it makes sense that someone would find themselves in a situation where they are in mid-air with a Go Pro camera, and here we have it, a statistical anomaly has been recorded for posterity.

“Remarkable Story Of Chicken Little” – 1865 edition

‘The sky is falling’ is a famous term from the children’s story, “Chicken Little”, and apparently versions of this story go back more than 25 centuries. (See above Chicken Little story link). So perhaps seeing a shooting star is good luck because you presumably lived to tell the tale and therefore since you are so lucky you deserve your wish come true? That is my humble analysis.

It should be noted that the term, “The Sky Is Falling” is from Chicken Little, but has nothing to do with shooting stars (but rather a sort of fear mongering that is sort of like crying wolf). I just thought the “Sky Is Falling” term was so appropriate in this case of this skydiver, because to him that is exactly how it appeared!

When you wish upon a star...

When you wish upon a star…

The term “shooting star” originally came from ancient times, before advanced science, when there were actually thought to be stars shooting across the night sky. Now we know it is actually not a star at all, but rather a meteorite that burns up as it passes through the earth’s atmosphere. (Source article linked up to below image)

Shooting stars are a symbol of hope in our society. They provide the idea that there are unknown things out there, and the possibility of a granted wish. Apparently the wish originates from ancient Greece, it was believed that the stars were leaked from the Heavens and while the God’s were looking down on us they were more receptive to hear our wishes. (Source article linked up to above image)

Did Helstrup’s wish come true? According to the article about the skydiver and his meteorite, if he had jumped just two seconds later it would’ve ripped him in half – Anders Helstrup couldn’t be luckier, and it seems his wish has been granted.

My Meteorite Necklace

My Meteorite Necklace – formerly a shooting star

Someone very special recently gave me a piece of a meteorite that had been made into a necklace, which was quite possibly the most meaningful and serendipitous gift I’ve received (most of the reasons I won’t go into here). This is a rare item that I will cherish forever. It is my kind of jewelry, unique and natural. It looks very mysterious. It definitely doesn’t look like a star, nor does it glow. Looking at it I am reminded of Superman’s Kryptonite, and what’s funny is that they both come from outer space.

The coincidences that surround shooting stars provide a mystical element to the moment in which they are viewed. They take us out of our everyday reality just for an instant and give us hope. It is a reminder that we should be thankful for the present, and that at anytime something spectacular could happen!


PHOTO CREDIT: TGB/Splash News, Theo Wargo/WireImage

PHOTO CREDIT: TGB/Splash News, Theo Wargo/WireImage

Recently Miley Cyrus has been taking a lot of heat for wearing scantily clad outfits (and in some cases no outfits at all), and dancing provocatively (via a new style called “twerking”) in a few of her recent musical appearances/videos.

In defense of Miley’s recent controversial antics, in a recent interview (linked above) Lady Gaga really turns the tables and points the finger at us – what is our problem anyway?

Is it really the end of the world that Miley is so young and acting this way? After all she is 20 years old, not a teenager. A formerly wholesome pre-teen icon turned edgy rule-breaker…this is not the first time that has happened. So I agree with Gaga, “…if you have a problem with it, just change the channel.”

I am actually pretty happy to hear that Lady Gaga stood up and alerted us all that the recent gossip really is nonsense and questions why everyone is so focused on Miley Cyrus and her current shenanigans. Every time I hear words that Gaga speaks I am reminded that not only are her intentions for artistic expression, but that she is extremely intelligent as well (actually way more than the mainstream gives her credit).

PHOTO CREDIT: Di Crollalanza/Sipa /Rex Features

PHOTO CREDIT: Di Crollalanza/Sipa /Rex Features

Miley’s father, Billy Ray Cyrus (famous country singer), made a great comment on his daughter’s controversial performance at the VMA awards by saying, “It wouldn’t have mattered if Miley would have worn jeans and a flannel shirt… a tux… or a nun’s habit. The song’s a smash and her performance vocally on the tune reflects her roots and sheer God-given talent.”

I have linked the article explaining the Miley Cyrus controversy to the above photo, and I have linked the video of Miley’s controversial stint at the VMA’s to the below photo.

The real truth is that Miley is a singer and an artist, and just like Lady Gaga (and other singers, like Madonna) there are fans that want exactly what Miley is putting out. People love to point the finger at everyone else, but I when it comes time to be put on the spot themselves, no one wants to put themselves out there. No one wants to be the “weird” one, yet everyone wants to watch the “weird” ones. Well Lady Gaga and Miley Cyrus put themselves out there for their art and for the world, and for that and I think they should be commended.



Looking at Miley then and now we can see there is a huge contrast, and I think she is trying to make it very clear that there is no place for Hannah Montana anymore. Lady Gaga even mentions that insight in her interview “…and maybe she’s not so happy with stuff she did in her career when she was younger and she wants to be free, so let her do what she wants.”

Linked above is the video of the most recent controversial experience for Miley, which was her barely clothed twerking at the VMA’s during the two musical acts “We Can’t Stop” and “Blurred Color Lines”. These performances don’t seem any worse than anything I’ve seen from Britney Spears. The only difference here is the glimmer in Miley’s eye when she can tell that what she’s doing is getting under everyone’s skin. Honestly, I think everyone who is making a big deal about her right now is just provoking her to delve even further into being a rebel.



In my opinion, sometimes Lady Gaga makes some exquisite choices in fashion (above), and sometimes they are borderline (like an all-meat outfit to an awards show?!). In her interview (linked at the very top) Gaga defends these types of decisions whilst making a great point about Miley and her recent choices, “I mean, I just think everybody needs to lighten up and leave her alone. Because it’s pop music. Everybody’s entitled to their own artistic expression…”

In Miley’s “Wrecking Ball” video (which I have linked to the above photo), there are a few shots of Miley riding on the actual wrecking ball completely naked. This can be viewed as an analogy for how vulnerable she was feeling (as it is a break-up song), as an artistic choice, and not one to exploit her body.

Lady Gaga also reminds us in her interview that Miley Cyrus has been forced to grow up in front of the world, not an easy task. Miley may be young, but she probably is more mature than any of us were at her age. So watch out because Miley Cyrus has something to prove. R.I.P. Hannah Montana.


I had the wonderful opportunity this last weekend to attend Lightning in a Bottle, which is an amazing music festival thrown every year by my good friends at The Do Lab. This year volunteered in exchange for my ticket, and I got to work all weekend at Temple of Consciousness stage where mostly spiritual speakers and music were going to be heard. This was my fourth year attending, and due to my good fortune I have been a part of this experience since the early years of the festival. I went to the third LIB in 2002 when I first started hanging out with the Orange Kids (parts of that group later spawned off to become what is now known as The Do Lab).


The highlight of the festival (for me) was to see my favorite DJ, The Human Experience, who I heard was to spin at the Temple stage. Once I got there I found out he would spin at 5:30am on Saturday morning so I stayed up all night (unenhanced) just to be able to hear his set. I was really bummed when I got to the Temple and found out that the cops had just shut down all of the speakers because of a neighborhood complaint. Sadly, I returned to my tent so that I could get some much needed sleep to work again at the Temple later that day. Once I woke up I found out that The Human Experience did indeed play a set that morning, albeit an acoustic one, that was about an hour later than originally scheduled. Apparently he likes to play the sunrise set, and I assume it is because his music really resonates well during that time of day. I caught parts of his sunrise set on New Year’s Eve 2012 at Hummingbird Ranch and it was spectacular!

The Human Experience CD cover

I never got to see The Human Experience play at Lightning in a Bottle, so I jumped at the chance when I got the invitation to his CD release party (for his CD “Soul Visions with Rising Appalachia”, linked above) at King King this last Tuesday. The universe works in mysterious ways, because what I saw when I arrived made my heart sink. I had been standing less than ten feet from this person the entire weekend while I was working at the Temple stage of the LIB festival! I didn’t realize until that moment that I never really knew what this DJ looked like in-person (when I saw him previously he was spinning with another person), and I was now full of regrets that I unknowingly bypassed an incredible opportunity to (at the very least) show my appreciation. Everything all started to make sense as bits of information I had previously heard started flashing through my mind. The Human Experience is a person named David Block, a fellow Do Labber. Of course he was working closely with the festival. With all of my experience working for celebrities and top producer/director’s in Hollywood, one would think I would’ve learned my lesson by now – act with grace and humility toward everyone around you as you really don’t know who they are or what they will become. Lesson learned!


At first it just seemed like a really great Sci-Fi movie, but I know right away people started thinking…maybe this could really happen?  Honestly, it is hard to deny that THE TERMINATOR’s scenario would be everyone’s worst nightmare if Artificial Intelligence (AI) machines were to take over society, but apparently for some reason modern day science still wants to see how close it can get.

Thankfully, the UN has stepped in and is now demanding more ethical research into the matter before they will allow military use of AI to proceed, and a moratorium on use of AI in the military has now been put into place. “War without reflection is mechanical slaughter.” Said human rights expert Christof Heyns at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, which was covered by BBC news last Thursday in the video I have linked below (the original link I saw on MSNBC is now not working for some reason.):


During my Cognitive Science and Philosophy of the Mind coursework, I studied this topic of AI’s potential future role in the military and it is a topic that I am very serious about. I even contemplated going to grad school to study technology ethics so that I may join the philosophical conversation on this particular issue. 1) AI machines are man-made, but their “minds” are not programmed by humans to react in certain ways; they learn how to do this on their own and are autonomous. 2) I believe we as humans have a mind with a consciousness that does not exist in this physical world.* 3) Therefore, I believe that it is impossible to manufacture a “man-made mind” that is in any every way similar to a human’s mind, let alone one that can exist in an AI machine. Because of this I do not believe that an AI machine can possibly make the paramount ethical decisions that are required for military use, namely the decision of who to kill and who not to kill.

I don’t think that mainstream society understands how often THE TERMINATOR film is mentioned regarding this particular issue, because philosophers bring it up all the time! We may think of it as an imaginary scenario, but I probably talked about it every day and in more than a handful of classes when I was studying philosophy of science for my bachelor’s degree.

The above photo is cropped from an original TERMINATOR poster that I got while I was working at Pacific Western Productions (now Valhalla Motion Pictures), the production company that brought us the first 3 films in THE TERMINATOR series. Despite my distaste for AI in the military, I really love all of the movies from this saga…I’ll be back!

*It should be noted that this is not the view of mainstream science.

**Also a little credit should be given to Pink Floyd for the majority of my article title.


I admit it, I am an 80’s TV rerun junkie. Sometimes it is embarrassing to accept, though, that I’d rather sit at home watching The Golden Girls back-to-back than most of the new television content that’s out there.

Last night while I was watching Cheers (like ya do), it hit me. I watch faithfully and loyally because the folks from 80’s-TV-land are really just old friends and family as far as I’m concerned. Just like in the Neverending Story, where Sebastian was there the whole time with Atreyu on his fantastic journey; I was there with Sam Malone during both of his love affairs with Diane and Rebecca. When Arnold said “what-chu-talkin’ about Willis?” I knew what he was talkin’ about!

I spent most of my childhood watching TV…namely Three’s Company, Facts of Life, Roseanne, and the Wonder Years (but believe me there were many many more). Those characters are just as familiar to me as if they were my own family members and they have the ability to console me as much as my closest friends. I’m so thankful that they are forever encapsulated in time. Even though they’ve taken away Blockbuster, I’m stoked they haven’t taken away my 80’s TV reruns. I’ll cheers to that!

Ground Control to Major Tom

I feel obligated to write about the first music video in space, which if you haven’t seen yet (linked above) was a glorious rendition of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” (posted yesterday by Chris Hadfield, an astronaut from Canada). If video killed the radio star, and internet killed the video store, and space is the final frontier…then…did space kill the internet?

Well, yes, I’d say Hadfield “killed it” with almost 2 million views in less than 24 hours!

This is definitely a benchmark in digital entertainment, as space is no longer our final frontier. I think another reason why this seems significant to me is that I vaguely remember that the first script I “covered” in Hollywood was titled aptly, GROUND CONTROL TO MAJOR TOM. If memory serves me correct, it was just the David Bowie song drawn out at length into a feature screenplay. Anyway, it was a great sample of the caliber of scripts that one generally reads while doing said coverage.

Kudos to you, Chris Hadfield. And clever song pick, no-one could do that from a better viewpoint! We all wish we were staring back at Earth from outer space. YOU are officially the most interesting man in the world. Dos Equis had better watch out.

There's Always Money in the Banana Stand

Okay okay, so right when I put my foot in my mouth and bash Netflix, they come back and TOTALLY REDEEM THEMSELVES!

For those of you who don’t know what I am talking about (or are somehow blind to my above pic but yet still reading this story), Netflix is coming out with SEASON 4 of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT (Airing exclusively on Netflix on May 26th). I’m so happy I could cry. There have been rumors of this for years, and I know there is a movie in the works. I am just happy that we get to experience the mayhem and madness of a whole brand new season of Arrested Development one more time!

This show has a dry satirical humor that is definitely an acquired taste. Fortunately, the taste can be acquired by watching the show in its entirety from the beginning. The writing is incredibly witty, and the jokes build on each other. There are millions of inside jokes that can slip through the cracks if you don’t pay attention. Don’t dare miss an episode or you might not understand what’s going on because it travels so fast!

I predict this will be a hit. The comedy is sharp and the characters are even sharper. I own all three existing seasons on DVD and have seen every episode a hand full of times. Every time I watch an episode there is something new that I didn’t catch before and I can’t help but chuckle. This show is always funny, no matter what…so don’t forget, there’s always money in the banana stand!

Internet Killed the Video Store

“Internet killed the video store…I rent less and download more, pirated movies from ceiling to floor” lyrics by my friend Ryan Thompson, who doesn’t know I’m quoting him here. Clever lyrics for my clever title!!

I’m not delighted that Blockbuster got raped by Netflix. Now I can’t get any more of my old movies anywhere! It’s not even a fraction as easy as it used to be to just go down to the video store to rent a movie if you want to watch something like “Noises Off” (John Ritter classic!). Many older movies can only be found by purchasing them on Amazon or hope that a local video store might still have them. Even Netflix’s DVD membership isn’t completely extensive as they still don’t have many of the old films I love. It seems like there are only like 3 Blockbusters left and they only have movies that were made from within the last 10-15 years!

It might not be so bad if they had more to choose from on Netflix, however, they are definitely not a Blockbuster replacement in my opinion. Maybe it is just me but there is something I truly miss about walking down the aisles of Blockbuster to pick a movie or two to watch, I try these days but it’s just not the same.

This is a photo I took of the Blockbuster that used to be down the street from my Dad’s house in Redondo Beach (which was a Music Plus before that). Now it just sits there forlorn…longing to be a video store once again. Sniff.


Yes, it’s true. This meme changed my life…thank you Robin Williams. This quote made me realize that life’s not all about finding someone and locking it down. Life is about being happy and finding that within yourself. If you aren’t happy first, then nothing anyone else does (or even doesn’t do) is going to make you happy. And above all else, nothing is worse than being with someone that prevents you from finding that happiness. So no matter what the expense, if you are in an unhealthy relationship, my advice is that you open your eyes and see if it is time to say sayonara.


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