Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Sobe It: Updates from Miami & the Bahamas, PART 5

Beth and I saw the movie "Face/Off" in the theaters during our honeymoon in Maine.  The precedent was set.  We've taken some movieless trips, of course, but we regularly manage to squeeze in a show while we're on the road: "Julie & Julia" in Seattle; "Hands on a Hard Body" in Austin; "Chicken Run" in Minneapolis; "A Simple Plan" & "Gladiator" in Kansas City.  I think I'm missing a couple, to say nothing of the road trips we took during college to Columbia or Des Moines for the primary purpose of seeing a movie or two.

Anyway, after our ship returned to port and before our flight left back for the midwest, we had a whole day in Miami to kill.  What's a stranded couple to do?  Uh, see a movie, of course!  This time, it was "Moneyball."  We saw it at a mall, and spent some time in Barnes & Noble beforehand.  If it weren't for days 1 and 2 of our trip, I'd say Miami is a lot like St. Louis.

"Moneyball" was good.  It's got some early Oscar buzz for picture and actor, and I'm OK with that.  I've got a soft spot for acting nominations that are NOT for evil and/or mentally/physically challenged characters.  Subtle nuances usually get overlooked, and Brad Pitt did a good job embodying a character in a believable manner WITHOUT having any "Oh, I hope this scene lands me an Oscar nomination" scenes.

The movie had an even-keel-ed pace for a sports movie, but still had its excitement.  I've read a couple of reviews of the movie from sports sites that are basically like, "It's a very good and realistic movie, if you can get past a few little things."  One of those "little things" is that the Oakland A's winning streak--and really much of their success for the duration of the season--was due to the talent of their "Big 3": Mark Mulder, Barry Zito, and Tim Hudson.  In real life, this Cy Young caliber trio of pitchers was regarded enough to have a collective nickname; in the movie, I'm pretty sure none of them is even mentioned.  So there's that.

Also, the A's didn't win the World Series (or even get there).  And the team that the movie sites as having been influenced by this newfangled approach to putting a team together--the Boston Red Sox--also happened to have the second highest payroll in MLB in 2004, when they won the World Series.  So there's that, too.

Out of the context of reality, the moral was great: that sometimes you can achieve something great even if you don't realize it at the time.  If you want a movie that better reflects the economic realities of baseball and the impact that those realities have on the field, we can wait for this movie to get made.

Back to vacation...

After the movie, we had a happy-hour dinner at a restaurant in the mall that reminded us of McCormack & Schmicks, where I used to work.  It was likely the tastiest meal we had on the trip, and a great note to end on.

The real highlight of the trip, though, was coming back home and having this waiting for us:


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