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Sundance2015 M5: Prophet’s Prey

My oh my. This is some seriously messed up stuff. More deserving of profanity than Mr. Cobain’s personal torment, but since I’ve had a couple days and movies to get extracted from the evil madness of Warren Jeffs, I can speak without profanity. But first, what this movie is NOT about. It is not about Polygamy, even though this LDS group is generally called “The Polygs” (ph: Pol-igs). There is nothing inherently wrong with polygamy – it is just one of many religious practices that...

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Sundance2015 M4: The Overnight

While my range of movie genres is large, sex comedies are not usually within my circle of interest. Something about being a frustrated guy of a certain age, I kinda don’t need more stimulation in that arena. But I got a ticket for this one so… This is perhaps the least sexy sex romp ever. Almost chaste, you know, with nude adults and a few off-screen sex acts. Perhaps because the writer/director was not trying to draw in the voyeur, but was working the genre...

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Sundance2015 M3: Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck

Oh my Heck. This is some seriously fucked up shit! Told via the stuff found in Cobain’s archive – journals (he kept tons of journals), home movies, concert footage, tasteful and sparse interviews with bandmates, mother father and sister, old girlfriends and the widow… developed into a tight, amazing, crazy (as in, clinical), extremely personal look inside the life and mind of Kurt Cobain. With this, I can accept his genius, and hear his songs in a whole different context. Thankfully, while my extended adolescence...

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Sundance2015 M2: The Summer of Sangaile

Second movie of the year is this drama from Lithuania.  Laura Dahl and Shelley Carver joined me for this one. Here are Laura’s impressions: I knew nothing about the film before arriving at the theater.  In fact, I wasn’t even sure of the title of the movie –  this is what happens when someone else does all the planning for your first Sundance Film experience.  I did however have some expectations for this Sundance film, such as… interesting cinematography, limited (foreign) dialog, and some nudity....

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Sundance2015 M1: White God

When dogs look upon us, they look upon us as like Gods…  and we are white (at least, in Hungary); thus “White God” What an amazing film, and so hard, deliberately, to characterize. Coming of age film?  Check!  Eleven year old Lili is pushed off to live with her divorced, sad, barely-functioning father for an extended stay, but there is no room at the inn for Lili’s beloved companion, a mixed-breed dog named Hagen. In a fit of piss-off, her father throws Hagen out of...

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Lower Lower Echo (yo-yo), Zion January 2015

Yes, it is still winter. After a few days of rain, we were psyched to go sneak another canyon in, and also psyched for a lazyish start, given the festivities the night before, Amanda and Kat’s going away party in advance of their coming-up-fast South Africa adventure. The day was grey and not all that warm. The plan was to do Lower Lower Echo. Lower Echo Canyon is an awesome canyon, kinda like Imlay’s final narrows without keeper potholes, but the long rappel out the...

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Zion Observation Point Canyon Jan 2015

What a crazy year! After a brief cold spell, Zion warmed up again. Up for something – what faces south? I had done Observation Point Canyon only once, back in 2008. If it was going to be in the new book, I kinda needed to do it again. I drove up the canyon on Sunday to check if it had melted out yet – YES, and no flow coming out of it – all good signs. For this adventure, my two favorite and best canyoneering...

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Zion Mystery Canyon Last Gasp December 2014

The idea was to sneak in one more good canyon before the weather hit, and Diana really wanted Kolob, so we scheduled a trip Monday Tuesday, hiking out the narrows and… And then it snowed. Plenty of snow up top, so Kolob was not going to be a good choice. Second choice… well, why not a Mystery? Christian had not done it yet, permits would not be hard to get. Ethan helped out by driving us to the top before heading off to go climbing…...

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Zion Tabernacle Dome for Thanksgiving 2014

Zion. Tabernacle Dome. A fine easy climb before pigging out on Thanksgiving victuals. What an amazing fall we have been having. The warm, sunny weather has persisted, and it seems our obligation to take advantage. Tabernacle Dome (or Turtle Rock) seemed like a good choice for a pre-feast romp – half-day, not too far, mostly just fun fun fun. Takers for this event were Assam Saidi (outfitter at ZAC) and his buddy from Detroit, Adam Spencer aka Spence; and the always-game Amanda J. A casual...

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Not-Imlay Canyon Zion – rope retrieval and scenic tour Nov 21 2014

Canyoneering? It is getting kinda cold at night, but the fine weather in Zion National Park is holding so, when someone mentioned that ropes were hanging on the last rap in Not-Imlay, we thought we would throw together a trip and go get em sooner rather than later. Invites went out and were quickly returned – guess more people than me have a touch of the cabin fever. Weekday travel would allow driving into Zion Canyon. Sweet temps would allow a reasonable start. The posse...