American Sniper

Last night, Sidney and I went and saw “American Sniper.” We walked inside the Market Common theater ten minutes before the 7:45 p.m. showing and the auditorium was packed. We had to sit in the front row. It didn’t matter where we sat though because I was so excited about the film. I also like watching movies in full houses.

The "American Sniper" auditorium at the movie theater in Market Common was packed.

The “American Sniper” auditorium at the movie theater in Market Common was packed.

When I walked out of the theater last night, there was one thought more prevalent in my brain than anything else: The acting job of Bradley Cooper. By far the best performance of his career, Cooper played a role that was so unlike anything he had ever done before. The way he played the Texas war hero Chris Kyle was out of this world. Besides having the Texas drawl down pat and being every bit believable as a Navy SEAL sniper could be, Cooper looked very similar to Kyle. He put a tremendous amount of effort into transforming himself for that role. Oscar worthy no doubt.

The movie tells the tale of Chris Kyle, a former cowboy who joined the Navy and became a SEAL. Naturally gifted as a sniper, he became the deadliest shooter in American military history and earned the nickname “The Legend.” He didn’t just stay up on his perch though (and he absolutely could have if he wanted), he went on extremely dangerous village raids with marines as they went to search for bad guys. He completed four tours in Iraq.

My ticket from "American Sniper." It was a superb movie.

My ticket from “American Sniper.” It was a superb movie.

The story is incredibly told with superb acting. It depicts the struggles and emotions of fighting in a deadly foreign country very well, both for the military personnel and their families. The film is authentic and believable, and will undoubtedly go down as one of America’s best war films.

The film does an amazing job capturing war zone Iraq. You get a true glimpse of what fighting was like during the war. It becomes plainly obvious that fighting wasn’t done on some glorified battlefield but rather in crippled neighborhoods and communities. The conditions they fought in were very well laid out and depicted. Director Clint Eastwood did a phenomenal job casting the Iraqi people. Everyone from the little kids to the villagers to the rival sniper to the bad guys (including a chilling portrayal of “The Butcher”) made the movie so real and so intense.

One of my favorite parts of the movie was watching Kyle’s character (Cooper) do his job…sniping. Watching him pick off Iraqi soldiers was intense and exhilarating. The film makers did what they needed to do to make his sniper work seem completely real while also honoring the amazing pure talent that Kyle had. In the last battle scene of the movie, Kyle’s most important and seemingly impossible kill is made. It is an incredible part in the film, one that will have you on the edge of your seat. It was my favorite part over the course of the two hours in the theater. Yes, there is the scene where he takes out a couple of non-military personnel but it will really just make you respect him even more for doing what he had to do.

I had a tough time with the ending. Half of it comes with me just not liking the real life events that unfolded and half of it comes from the way it was depicted in the movie. I don’t want to give too much away about the film so I will just stop there.

“American Sniper” is a great movie, one that most people need to see. Because of the ending and because of a couple other things, I do like “Lone Survivor” better but that is just me. If you are a Bradley Cooper fan get to the theater as soon as possible and see his performance. If you are an American and you like to see our war heroes do incredible things, you should probably get there even faster.

When Chris Kyle was asked whether he regretted any of his kills, he responded in this way: “I regret the people I couldn’t kill before they go to my boys.” Don’t Blink.

I Am an Online Dating Expert and a Published Writer!

Hello Thursday, it is great to see you again! I am all around the board today with my Thursday Rundown as I cover online dating, work, football, and the movies. Let’s get started ASAP.

The New Way to Date – So apparently I am an online dating expert! We get calls from the media every single day asking us to put them in contact with our faculty members who specialize in certain areas. This past Friday we fielded a call from news station WPDE regarding a story they were doing on the safety of online dating. Because the subject revolves very heavily on social media, I was assigned to give the interview. Reporter April Baker came over to the office and interviewed me. I talk to the media a lot but usually it is in relation to something I am doing at the University. This time around I was straight up giving my expertise! I had a fun time doing the interview and April did a fabulous job. Watch the report by clicking here.

A screenshot from my online dating interview with WPDE.

A screenshot from my online dating interview with WPDE.

Published Writer – I love to write and I do it a lot through this blog and other outlets but never before has my work been published in a legitimate, hard copy publication. That recently changed. I was humbled to have the opportunity to write a profile piece for the latest issue of Coastal Carolina University Magazine. Our twice-a-year alumni publication, this magazine is beautiful and glossy with a large readership. I wrote a piece on Patrick Sparks, an important alumnus of CCU. I put a lot of effort into the piece but after three months since submitting it to the editor, I kind of forgot about it . However, I was reminded of it in grand fashion today when I held a copy of the magazine in my own hands. I had a small moment of pride when I saw my own story on that page with my name on it. To have opportunities such as this is a big reason on why I came to Coastal.

The main photo on the right is my article in the magazine. The top photo is the cover, the middle photo is my social media ad in the publication, and the bottom photo is the magazine logo on the inside cover.

The main photo on the right is my article in the magazine. The top photo is the cover, the middle photo is my social media ad in the publication, and the bottom photo is the magazine logo on the inside cover.

American Sniper – For a long time now I have looked forward to watching “American Sniper.” After months of buildup, award hype, and countless previews on television, I am pumped up for the nationwide release tomorrow. I am just so intrigued by the role Bradley Cooper plays. As a fan of his, I am chomping at the bit to watch him take on this character. It is something completely different from anything he has ever done. I will see it at the theater for sure this weekend and I will make sure to let you know how it was.

Championship Sunday – This Sunday the NFL conference championship games will be played. It goes without saying that I will be cheering heavily for the Seahawks to dispose of the Packers in the earlier NFC contest. To see my favorite team get back to the Super Bowl for the second year in a row would be very fulfilling. As for the AFC nightcap, I will be clearly cheering for a certain team as well. I hope the Indianapolis Colts kick the snot out of the New England Patriots. I enjoy Andrew Luck and despise Brady and Belichick so I am crossing my fingers for a Seahawks-Colts Super Bowl. Nothing is better than watching the NFL on Sunday when you have the sweet assurance that you don’t have to work the next day.

Social Media Promotion of the Week – As a fun little social media promotion to start the semester off, I implemented something that I thought of while working out last week. I had Jada, my social media intern, go to Kimbel Library and randomly choose five books from all corners of the facility. She took photos of the books and put a note on the inside cover stating what to do with it when found. Starting on Monday I posted a photo of one of the books on our social media outlets challenging our students to find it, check it out, and then bring it to our office for a prize pack. I repeated this routine with different books on Tuesday, Wednesday, and today. Four days in and we have had a winner each day. Two of the times we had a group of students come in with the winning book. Jada did a great job choosing the selections as she picked books that somehow related to the University and/or the college experience. This promotion will wrap up tomorrow.

These are the four student winners who checked out the hidden books the past several days.

These are the four student winners who checked out the hidden books the past several days.


Did you know that January is already halfway over? How are you doing with your New Year’s resolutions? If you have already fallen off, don’t give up. Hop back on and make good on your goals. The year is still very young. Have a wonderful holiday weekend and enjoy the football games! Don’t Blink.