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10.6.17 is OUR Key

The magic of film is a mysteriously powerful force that not only invites temporary escapism in a theater, but can, with certain movies, offer a long-lasting escape within ourselves.

And there’s that movie and/or scene that will never stop running around in our minds.

The Blade Runner 2049 team has accomplished such a feat. Here is the latest TV spot that Warner Bros. Pictures debuted today for the aforementioned film arriving in cinemas in less than a month on October 6th.

The title of this trailer (yes, trailers have titles now) is, “Begins.”

Seems fitting since fans everywhere simply want their local movie theater’s film projectors to begin playing Blade Runner 2049 already.

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My 5-Year (& Counting) Plan of Steel

“The Value of the Dollar is Rising in the American Restaurant.”

This was the first headline on Jimmy’s Daily Planet exactly five years ago on July 13, 2012. And the purpose of my debut blog post was to shine a light on the burgeoning reality of small bites and, therefore, lower prices per quality food item in American restaurants for still struggling restaurant owners and customers in equal measure.

We live in the era where a bag of skittles costs $1, a trip to the movies forces one to contemplate his or her finances and best of all, a large…I mean a venti, at Starbucks is almost $2.00! Who else remembers, “The best part of wakin’ up is Folgers in your cup.” Making our own coffee…it was a simpler time then.

The point is everyday expenses have skyrocketed well beyond reality. We laugh at our grandparents and parents for speaking nostalgically about getting a $.10 hamburger and an ice cream cone for a nickel…Today, it really gives new meaning to the term “The Greatest Generation.” Fear not, this is not an article about business finances related to the rising costs of food. This is about how White Castle has set the food trend that is here in to stay in America for a long, long, long time.

White Castle is famous for its sliders. Small burgers that alone may not be completely filling at around $.45 apiece, but when ordered in packs of four or more certainly can cure a hungry appetite. This is where we are now. Americans are in the “Slider Era.” I don’t mean that every food item will be a small burger, but the slider concept is alive and well and has taken on all sorts of variations. From burgers to lobster roll sliders, restaurants all over are creatively adapting. Chefs of all kinds have realized more than ever that their bottom line is directly linked to their customers. Eating out together today more closely resembles eating out together as a family going to McDonald’s when the Golden Arches first shined bright in suburban Chicago, Illinois, with the Dollar Menu as one example. To be clear, this is a great thing! We are in this together, and restaurants are stepping up.

From White Castle to a sushi joint to Ed’s Lobster Bar Annex in the lower east side of New York city, people are becoming increasingly aware that sharing a few small plates or appetizers together is more fun (economically and socially) than always ordering a large meal and an expensive drink. Order smaller items, but more of them.

At Yogi Perogi in Grandview, Ohio, each perogi ranges from $1.75-$2.50. With just two or three, that’s easily lunch. That not only could be a new lunch spot, but also an expanded palate, as was the case with me. With all prices relative to its location and quality, a lobster roll slider at Ed’s Lobster Bar Annex in NYC is $5, three lobster tacos are $12 and a lobster burger slider is $5. Again, three of these plus an order of fries ($6, but remember it can be split if you’re eating out with friends or family…and it’s quite a few fries) are sufficient for a meal. This is all especially good when you realize the signature lobster roll alone goes for $27.

Simply put: Less is more.

Has the reality I blogged about five years ago relating to the restaurant industry changed dramatically?

Interestingly, no.

It’s a bit surreal to reflect back to writing my first blog post on this new website I built using WordPress called Jimmy’s Daily Planet, which is a nod to Clark Kent’s human job as a reporter at The Daily Planet. There’s also the simultaneous gentle tip of the cap to Daily Planet photographer Jimmy Olsen and my first name being Jimmy.

I couldn’t even think a couple years into the future, let alone five, to imagine what this personal hobby would or could become. What I do know is that I love writing and communicating in my own style and voice. There’s no point in writing or speaking like other people. And this blog has provided me with the amazing opportunity to engage in reporting and telling stories, as Frank Sinatra would say, my way.

Now, what does the future hold for Jimmy’s Daily Planet?

Much like writing each blog post Monday-Friday, I’ll figure it out as I’m writing and brainstorming new topics and ways to communciate with people with clever twists and, hopefully, a bit of insight.

The gift of the fifth wedding anniversary is wood. Although, steel seems more fitting in this case…but I digress. So, how does wood connect to writing a blog? Well, wood is natural and the instincts for creating and publishing content on this blog are natural and intuitive. In a forest, for example, there are tall trees, short trees, trees with majestic branches and trees with few branches. Some trees may look alike, but every tree has its own unique characteristics. I like to think Jimmy’s Daily Planet is similar to a wooded forest in this regard.

Simply put: Saying yes to a blog has been more rewarding than I could’ve imagined five years later.  

Extending Our Brief History in Time

“If humanity is to continue another million years, our future lies in boldly going where no one else has gone before,” Hawking said, BBC reported.

Stephen Hawking continued his remarks.

“To leave Earth demands a concerted global approach, everyone should join in,” he said. “We need to rekindle the excitement of the early days of space travel in the sixties.”

He added one more thing.

“It is time to explore other solar systems. Spreading out may be the only thing that saves us from ourselves. I am convinced that humans need to leave Earth.”

You have our attention, Mr. Hawking.

The famed scientist made this bold delcaration at a recent arts and science festival known as Starmus. This event took place in Norway. Whether or not people or nations rush to join this intergalactic effort (aside from Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, what countries can afford this challenge right now?), the premise of rededicating ourselves to exploring the unknown of outer space is an exciting point to make in remembering America’s historically inspiring recent past. There are countless policies, specifically concerning the economy, entitlement reform and foreign policy/defense, that need to be crafted and enacted. Absolutely. Having said that, exploring space should jump back to being a national priority.

Instantly after reading Mr. Hawking’s eye-opening remarks, a specific film came to mind.

Christopher Nolan’s movies are always an experience and about something more than just the initial story and characters. And it seems that one of the leaders of the scientific community had more to say (knowingly or unknowingly) about the seemingly prescient cinematic event of 2014.

That cinematic event being Interstellar.

The Lesson: Watch more movies.

Arsene(al) is Done

Those on the inside, as well as fans on the outside, may finally be united in declaring the following:

Arsène Wenger’s reign over Arsenal is (unofficially) over. And as of right now in 2017, Arsenal is (at least temporarily) done as a world footballing powerhouse.

Why “unofficially”?

Despite the chronic problems Mr. Wenger, the 67 year-old Frenchman, has managed (and reinforced) during the past several years as the club’s head coach, he did deliver many great seasons and players in the years prior. Moreover, if Arsène Wenger was going to be fired mid-season, then he would have received his walking papers during the second half of the Champions League match against Bayern Munich earlier this week. Mr. Wenger will, it appears, be given the respect to finish out the 2016/2017 season. The 5-1 loss to Bayern Munich this past Tuesday in London (the second 5-1 loss in the two-game Champions League series against the German giants), again, “unofficially” ended the Wenger Era at Arsenal.

(Press Play, then click “Watch this video on YouTube” and then RETURN to read the remainder of this blog post!)

After this season ends, however, Mr. Wenger and Arsenal have to part ways. This moment is unambiguous, even to the painfully reluctant owners of Arsenal with the power to hire and fire the manager.

But there is a significant risk to giving Mr. Wenger the managerial elasticity to finish the current English Premier League campaign. Arsenal is currently in fifth place, having a dreadful past few weeks. If Mr. Wenger can inspire his players unlike games prior (seriously doubtful), then the new Arsenal manager (TBD) will have the potential for immediate redemption in the 2017/2018 Champions League. But if Mr. Wenger can’t inspire his players to find that missing greatness on the pitch (seriously plausible), then the new Arsenal manager will have to sit-out of the Champions League for the 2017/2018 season.

The Gunners are engaging in the tricky dynamic of Risk v. Respect. Both options are understandable.

Moving forward though, what good is a canon if it only shoots blanks and completely fails to intimidate its targets?