Review: Breaking Bad Final Season, Final Episode – Felina

Review: Worth waking up at 3:30 AM to watch this satisfying closure!

Summary: There have been three shows that I had caught every episode over the past two decades. Stargate SG1, Syfy’s Battlestar Galatica and AMC’s Breaking Bad. All three of them, as far as genres, had different universes. Two constants had been the great chemistry of casting and stories contrasting the human condition. Breaking Bad had continued a tradition of sorts, by focusing on the sublime of living to the cusp of death. All three had drawn across their own personal mythologies at a drop of a dime. Of  these series, Breaking  Bad had been the most complete in closing out plots with an unyielding clarity. In lieu of alien worlds, it had explored the internal universe of human emotions. The alien worlds here had been circumstances and characters like, Walter Jr., Mike, Saul, Gus and more. Bryan Cranstan had completed the journey of Walter White, but few performances can compare regardless of medium (i.e. cable, film, etc..).  In this final episode, he had delivered lines like, “You are going to need a bigger knife” and “I did for it for me” with such consistent precision. This collection of acting had demonstrated the conflicted man, torn between living for himself  versus living in the shadow of cancer. The series had ended resolving the necessary bad blood between Lydia, Jack, Pinkman and Todd. More importantly, it had closed the noose of evil turning upon itself. It had been a while before I found something worth watching regularly. I had been sure it will be some time before I do again. Goodbye “Baby Blue” and good night!

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For folks missing the broadcast or a DVR, you can pick up new episodes on iTunes:

“Felina” (posted 9/30/2013),  Inside Breaking Bad: Episode 608, “Felina” (posted 9/30/2013)

AMC had scheduled a rebroadcast of “Felina” on Monday, September 30 th 10 PM (Eastern)

and Thursday,October 3rd, 3 AM Eastern)

AMC’s Breaking Bad airing schedule: http://www.amctv.com/schedule#series/Breaking-Bad

Vogel State Park – Blairsville, Georgia: Part 2 – Vogel Overlook and Bear Hair Gap Trail

Before leaving the park office, I had received a detailed trail map for the extended area. Returning from Falls Bottom on the one mile Trahlyta trail loopback, I had recalled the other options in the area. What I had noticed that the Appalachian Trail being under 10 miles away. This had been one of the goals for my Labor Day weekend. Walking past the on premises cabins, another sign had pointed up toward Bear Hair Gap Trail. This 4 mile plus trail had seemed like a great place to start toward that journey. The varied physical features of the woods had been quite remarkable. The tree covered mountain side had its share of surprises. Park services had made a posting for no hang-gliding. After recent outing in Groveland, Florida, the trees, even without leaves, had been too dense to make flight of five feet. Across the ascent, we had crossed over creeks, streams and huge boulders. Florida had sand, Georgia boulders! Now on the trail, the terrain had composed of rocks and roots requiring attention care in passing over. The steep inclines up the mountain side had been challenging for my friend and me; however after about 2 hours we had arrived at Vogel Overlook. This view had peered down on Trahlyta Lake and most of Vogel State Park. At the summit, there had been a campsite of sorts with a log in the middle. With foliage still hearty, it had obstructed part of the sight. I had only imagined the grand scope of this view in fall or winter time. Then again the average temperature around those times had averaged around 30 F.

After coming down from Vogel Overlook, we had moved further up Blood Mountain toward the A.T. Though, the weather had started to change to thunder and an overcast sky with a potential of a downpour. We had been unprepared for this weather or an overnight trek. After some disappointment, we had decided to make the right choice, the smart choice and turn back. That choice had left open another chapter for an adventure solely pursuing the beginnings of the Appalachian Trail. During 2013, Vogel State Park and all its various options had provided one of the memorable interactions with nature. As managed lands, it had provided first hand testimony to natural beauty and majesty right around the corner in the southern United States.

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Read More:

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Vogel Trail Map (gastateparks.org)
Vogel State Park Hiking Trail (gastateparks.org)
Blood Mountain  (Wikipedia)

Appalachian Trail(Wikipedia)
Vogel State Park – Georgia State Parks and Historic Sites (gastateparks.org)
Vogel State Park (Wikipedia)

Vogel State Park – Blairsville, Georgia: Part 1, Falls Bottom Trail

Going up the north Georgia countryside, I had written down the name Vogel State Park from a passing sign. I had been inventorying possible places to investigate later in the day. After returning down from Brasstown Bald, I had been fairly indecisive about stopping here during a holiday weekend. Coming down a curving road just before the park entrance, I had seen the fading view and the crashing sounds of waterfalls. Indecision had turned into infatuation. Punch drunk had been a more appropriate characterization of my desire to see more. The road leading from the entrance had run parallel to a big lake Trahlyta and a surrounding hiking trail. Passing over a small creek bridge, I had parked in front of the body of water at the base of a couple of mountains. For a Floridian, this had been simply intoxicating variation in topography.

After parking, I had started walking the red clay of the nearby lake hiking trail. Moving down the path, each gaze upon the waters and mountains had provided shots too numerous to keep still for a camera. At the far end of the lake, a wooden sign had pointed downward and left to Falls Bottom Trail. This paved trail had led deeper down a hill under the cover of trees. At the end, the roaring waters I had previously seen from my passenger window. After seeing the best of Florida’s waterfalls at Rainbow Springs, this had bested that sight by a hundred fold. At the base of falls, I had realized my enchantment by one of the two oldest state parks in Georgia; however, the park had another round of secrets to enhance the visceral appeal. To that end, I had decided to save that posting for another day.

Posted park hours had been 8 AM until 10 PM. Like another Georgia park, this ranger had also mentioned no printable receipts and cash only at the gate. Canoe and cabin rentals had been available but, call ahead (706) 745-2628. For those interested in mapping out a drive, the address was 405 Vogel State Park Rd, Blairsville, GA.

Read More:
Vogel State Park – Georgia State Parks and Historic Sites (gastateparks.org)
Vogel State Park (en.wikipedia.org)View shared post

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Comedian – Tony Roberts @ the Improv Orlando – Thursday, September 26th, 2013

Last night, I had the opportunity to drive out to the Improv Orlando for comedian Tony T. Roberts. After a long work day, I had commuted across town off I-4 West. For those familiar with the previous location, Improv Orlando had now relocated to 9101 International Drive, Suite 2310 at Pointe Orlando. Arriving early, I had sat in the second row of tables with a vacationing couple. After receiving a menu, I had asked for a recommendation from the waiter. He had suggested ordering blueberry habanero hot wings. The wings had provided a distinct mix of sweet and spicy. I had made short work of them before ordering another entree with the show beginning.

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After two warm up acts, music had kicked into gear. Hitting the stage enthusiastically, Tony had started through the lyrics of “Bitch, Where You Been?!!” With his infectious smile and childish demeanor, it had been great way to pull in the audience. Working through the rest of his act and some audience members, he had been garish but, never mean spirited. His topics had ranged from stories deriving from personal relationships, sex, Michael Jackson, and his mother. By way of Detroit, his off color, working class humor had been a remedy for day starting at 4 am. For the money, he had put on a way better show than recent outings by headliners like Margaret Cho and Rosanne Barr.

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As far as cost, the tab for two entrees had been $25 with gratuity automatically built-in. Tickets had sold at $20/person. Tony T. Roberts had scheduled shows tonight, Friday September 27, 2013 through Sunday, September 29, 2013.  Shows had been ages 21+. The remaining showtimes had followed below.

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More Information:
Bitch, Where You Been?!! (Official HD) (YouTube)
Tony Roberts — You Need Yo Ass Beat (Official Video) (YouTube)
Hell NAW to the NO! (YouTube)
Tony T. Roberts (IMDB.com)
Tony T. Roberts website (tonytr.com)
Improv Orlando (theimprovorlando.com)
Improv Orlando Calendar of Events.

Rainbow Springs State Park -Dunnellon, Florida

“Butterflies, a bubble bee and love bugs…oh my, George Takei!”

Traveling through the hills of Dunnellon, I had been wondering what to expect upon my visit to Rainbow Springs State Park. My first turn onto the premises, time and rain had dampened a foray into a two hour tubing adventure at $10 per person. With instructions from a park ranger with piercing green eyes and three left turns, I had arrived at the main recreation area. For reference, there had been three different entrances for this park. Each had been for one of the following; camping, tubing, and general recreation. Right before going through park gate, I had been distracted by two physical features of the area, one a small waterfall on the left and the other, a sloping hill on the right. Passing through the gate with the handy Florida State park pass, I had thought this might be worthy of the time and gas. Coming around the gift shop, I had seen the river at 3 o’clock and slopping picnic grounds at 7 o-clock. What had drawn my attention to the left though, a sign regarding waterfalls. Waterfalls and Florida had seemed an oxymoron; however, this had been the motivation for the drive. Seeing snapshots for Top 10 Springs throughout Central Florida from the Orlando Sentinel, I had been curious what I might be missing. Visiting 8 out of the top 10 springs, what had made this one #4? Walking towards my intended target, the hilly topography had been refreshing sight. Within a matter of minutes, I had come to see three different waterfalls. While not extravagant or huge, it had been a welcome visual treat.

After soaking up these views, another sign for Butterfly Gardens had drawn me into an area with variety of plants and flowers. Yes, there had been a few butterflies, tons of love bugs, and a solemn bubble bee. After that, remnants of an old zoo had drawn me around a loop. After working up a sweat, it had seemed natural progression to coalesce to the river and springs. In those waters had been a few underwater cropping of rocks to stand on. During that dip, a train had rumbled by on the nearby tracks. That had generated an unexpected bit of excitement. The rumbling sound had resonated through the concrete pier into the spring waters.

Rainbow Springs had been quite a journey into “Undiscovered Country.” Despite the overcast day, this park had been one of the best experiences in Florida. If you had been seeking contrasting experiences within one park, take a ride out to Dunnellon.

Read more:
Top 10 Springs in Central Florida (Orlando Sentinel)
Rainbow Springs State Park (Florida State Parks)
Rainbow Springs State Park (Wikipedia)
George Takei (Wikipedia)

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Advil, Aspirin or Osteo Bi-Flex (GSM) with Loxin

One of my co-workers, had exclaimed, “Are you a fraking doctor now?”
My response, “Of course not (expletive)! …Human after all.”

Recently, I had increased the scope of my workouts including running on a trend mill and jogging outside. Thankfully, I had avoided shin splints versus an experience in my 20s. Though, I had noticed some extra throbbing in certain areas like an ankle, right knee and left foot. Without sounding like a “pill”, I had wanted to limit the wear and tear on my body starting into my 40s. In my arsenal, I had enlisted a few pairs of Sketchers’ Go-Runs, rest and supplements. One of those supplements had been Osteo Bi-Flex with Loxin. During my 20s and 30s, I had worked Glucosamine Sulfate into my diet after straining an acl, elbow and shoulder. Since then I had used this concoction in addressing any joint inflammation with  1,000-3,000 mgs (1-3 pills).

In marketing copy for Glucosamine Sulfate, it had purportedly assisted in retaining moisture in joints and assisting in building cartilage. To that point, there had been medical studies to the contrary. With that said, I had wanted to offer personal testimony without a kickback from big pharmaceutical company or the makers of Osteo Bi-Flex. So why had I avoided Advil and Aspirin? For one, I had noticed everyone in my immediate family ingesting these products periodically for various ailments. All of them had ironically continued receiving a lifetime worth of headaches. Maybe they had just all gotten sick of my yammering? On the other hand, I had avoided these products, receiving only headaches from hangovers, sunburns and high sodium foods (1ooo mg per serving). Of course that had just been my own interesting observation, nothing scientific; however, over the past couple of years, I had an issue with anemia from a stomach ulcer. Both, Advil and aspirin had compounded this condition with blood thinning. Additionally, prolonged usage had never stopped the pain from my strained ACL. Nor had these pills assisted in my rehab on a broken wrist. On the opposite end, Glucosamine Sulfate had been manufactured with shellfish for filler ingredients. Due to shellfish usage, a few of my friends had avoided Glucosamine Sulfate due to allergies.

So what had Osteo Bi-Flex with Loxin done for me? It had been faster in addressing joint pain and providing more fluid movement in difference to generic Glucosamine Sulfate. The contrast had been from going from “good” to “great.” For a quality of life issue, that had been worth paying a few extra dollars. To that end, I hoped to provide some consideration in exploring more about Glucosamine Sulfate, specifically, Osteo Bi-Flex (GSM) with Loxin.

As always, consult with a medical profession before making changes to your diet and/or review any possible adverse drug interactions.

Read More:

What Are the Pros & Cons of Taking Osteo Bi Flex? (Livestrong.com)
Glucosamine (MayoClinic)
Glucosamine (Wikipedia)

Alexander Springs – Ocala National Forest – Florida

Driving back through Ocala National Forest a few times this year, my eyes had fallen onto a sign for Alexander Springs. After a hitting few other springs this past weekend, I had decided to try following this sign onto a dirt road. After redirecting myself back onto a highway, I had found the entrance to Alexander Springs Recreation Area traveling down on  County Road 445. After arriving, I had scoped out the park taking a brief swim in the springs waters. What had intrigued me, the hiking options. Going onto the Timucuan Trail, the loop had gone into woods behind the main creek area. Some portions of the trail had been saturated with rain water coverting the dirt into thick mud. Mud aside, the only excitement had come from a few mosquitoes and seeing the tail end of a fleeing rattlesnake. Towards the end of this loop, the ground had been replaced by a wooden boardwalk. The boardwalk had provided riverside access with two overlooks for the creek. Another reason for the pit stop had been to get a feel for the location for possible scuba lessons. One item that had caught my eye, the proximity to the Florida trail. The Florida Trail had pretty much run into Alexander Springs recreation area. The park had seemed like a good detour, if hiking thru.

Though carrying Florida State Park’s annual pass holder, this federally run park had still wanted their cut of my money! Be sure that you had stored an extra $10 somewhere for admission. Additionally, you had an option to buy a Ocala National Park annual pass for $60 at the gate. For reference that pass had covered Juniper Springs, Salt Springs, Silver Glen Springs, and Salt Springs to start. If you had been considering hiking in central Florida, might be worth a stop to swim.

Read More:
Alexander Springs (www.floridasprings.org)
Ocala National Forest – Alexander Springs – USDA Forest Service (www.fs.usda.gov)
Florida Trail (Wikipedia)
Timucuan Trail (www.fs.usda.gov)

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