Friday, May 30, 2008

Fools go where angels fear to tread

Okay. I'm officially obsessed. I can't think about anything but going to see The Fall. It's playing at the local Arty-Smarty theater (it's an art house with a freaking crystal chandelier, if you can wrap your head around that), that's not too far away. Though, I will have to drive to get there. And the way I assuage my guilty carbon emissions from $4 a gallon gas is to make somebody get in the car with me. But I am totally ambivalent about making somebody go with me to see this movie.

I've read the reviews. I know what kind of movie this is. This is the kind of movie that more than likely any friend who has to sit through it will end up wanting to squash me like a bug. You know the feeling. That sense of mental death waves that radiate from the seat next to you as the friend that you dragged to this movie silently hates your guts. This has happened to me more than once. Usually it's something with a lot of metaphor and visual allusions. I sit there loving the whole thing. Then I walk out all bubbly and ready to discuss, and my friend gives me the look. The one where one eye is doing the crazy-eye thing, and the other eye is doing the "I hate you madly" thing, and their lower jaw is thrust out like a panting wart hog. That look.

I think I may just have to go this one alone. This movie looks like it's kind where somebody may not just want to squash me like a bug. They may actually do it.

NOT an easy look to pull off

Okay, ya know why Lee Pace is wearing a floor length skirt with this costume from The Fall? Cause he needed lotsa room for his great, big, giant cojones. Seriously, it takes balls to wear this look. As far as degree of difficulty, this is fashion by a factor of 10. Sleeveless millitary jacket(!) with eyeliner and a hat. Damn, boy! Watch out. You wear that gun belt, honey. Plus having a Mini Me? Even Derek Zoolander wouldn't attempt this. And the best accessory? The guns. And I'm not talking about the ones in the holster. Those biceps are yummy. Lee Pace, I salute you.

Look! Up in the Sky!

Man, would that just ruin your day? You're a primitive tribesperson, getting out of your reed mat in the morning, getting ready for a hard day of foraging. Maybe you're yelling at the kid for leaving their toy stick on the ground. Giving your loincloth a sniff to see if it's got another day in it.

Then there's a giant thing outside the hut, hanging in the air, going whop-it-a, whop-it-a, whop-it-a. What the hell is that thing? That is not a bird. What the? Somebody go get me my spear.

Actually, I'm far less sarky about this than that sounds. I would be really freaked if it was me. I've always said I would make a good Amazon native. I once saw this documentary on them. They have this counting system: 1, 2, many. That's it. I'd be a mathematical genius in the Amazon. 1+1=2. 1+2=many. Many+many=many. That's like A Beautiful Mind stuff in the Amazon. I'd be freaking John Nash. Of course, then it wouldn't be that unusual that I'd be seeing weird stuff in the sky.

I don't know. To me, it's kind of like when people say they want their kids to be kids as long as they can. Enjoy childhood, maturity comes along too fast these days. I kind of feel like they should let these folks, who've been lucky enough to avoid the modern world this long, should just be allowed to be who they are as long as they can. Leave them alone. Our world will creep in on them too soon anyway.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Urban Ornithology

I don't know if their populations are increasing. Perhaps this species, once rarely seen in the urban landscape, is migrating toward city centers. Perhaps through interbreeding, like the pigeon, they are becoming a hardier species. Perhaps, because of the same pressures that are forcing the coyote to range farther in search of habitat, they are venturing into previously unoccupied terrain. Or maybe I'm just noticing them more. Suddenly, I spot them at concerts, at bars, at the grocery store, at the movie theater. It's the Rooster Stud.

The Rooster Stud is small to medium-sized male hominid. Usually standing between 5'11" and 5'6". Frequently seen clad in t-shirts that fit them when they were a junior in high school, though they may or may not have grown since then. The Rooster Stud also favors cargo shorts and flip flops. They can be recognized by the faintly questioning tilt of their head, that flips from side to side as they track shiny objects with their beady little eyes.

They also have only one posture, whether for mating or aggressive displays: hands at about hip height, elbows back, knees slightly bent. They will bob through a crowd, repeating emitting their distinctive call. Where the avian rooster will cluck, the Rooster Stud will vocalize - "What? What?" Much as the Surfus Erectus can use the word "Dude?" in many forms (Dude? Dude! Duuuuude . . .), the Rooster Stud will use "What?" to signify a wide range of emotions, from surprise to amusement to a menacing pre-amble to territorial scuffles. The signal of territorial aggression will also be accompanied by more pronounced head bobbing and elbows being moved farther back as the chest puffs out. If you see this sort of posturing, it is best to leave the area immediately. Blood will most likely be spilled. Frequently Rooster Stud blood.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Angelina Jolie she ain't

Here's a suggestion: If you're going to get your political commentary from Sharon Stone, there are slightly more reliabe sources from which you can select. I'd suggest looking into the "shoot first, think later" talking head gadfly stylings of Glenn Beck, Arianna Huffington, Ann Coulter, Michael Moore, Crusty the Clown or a demented 3-year old baboon. All of them, probably better sources for ideas you can use. Probably.

Seriously. Who's idea was it to ask La Stone about the earthquake in China in the first place? Does she have a PhD in Asian studies that I don't know about? Does she hang with the Dalai Lama and Richard Gere at Spago? Ask Sharon how she keeps her biceps rock hard and her booty toned. Ask her where she got her shoes. Ask her who's a better kisser: Michael Douglas or Arnold Schwarzennegger? But the karmic implications of years of human rights violations? Not so much her wheelhouse, ya know?

The Stool Pigeon Comes Home to Roost

I find that the White House is "puzzled" by McLellan's book funnier than I can possibly express. Puzzled? Because you hung his ass out to dry, and he got pissed? What a peculiar reaction! Some people.

I'm puzzled myself. But only at how long it took him to come out. Seriously. Scott McLellan was the press guy at the height of the Bush White House information embargo. He's the one who got fed to the sharks constantly. Bush wasn't talking. Cheney wasn't talking. Well, Rove was talking sometimes. But mostly he was telling people they were idiots for not agreeing with him. So that left McLellan to play the burning man in front of the press corps. Through the start of the Iraq war. Through Katrina. Through Valerie Plame. Yee-ouch. That is crap duty if ever I've heard of it.

And like any bunch of bullies, the Bush Bunch acts surprised when the whipping boy punches back. "What? We thought he liked getting a pink belly. Why didn't he say something?" Typical. Looks like they don't have Scott McLellan to kick around any more. It will be interesting to see who else decides to tattle now that the Bush era is coming to a close. There have got to be some mighty interesting skeletons in those closets.

Funny or Money?;_ylt=ArWLwPd7PEBAIgr47Tn_sWGs0NUE

You have no idea how much I love these stories. Somebody finds out that the thing that's been sitting there for years is really valuable. I remember seeing one story where a family found out that the dresser that they'd been throwing wet swimsuits on was worth half a million dollars. I remember hearing one about a guy buying a paperweight at a garage sale, and it turned out to the only known sample of this particular type of rock on the entire planet - so it's basically priceless.

I kind of mentally collect all those stories. It's kind of like winning the lottery. Only cooler. I have these fantasies about being at some garage sale, or up in an attic and finding some long lost Monet painting. Of course the practical thing would be to sell it for a big stack of dolly-ollars. But the other side of me would just want to hang it up on the wall, and have it be my little secret - "hee hee! I've got Mo-net-ay! I've got a Mo-net-ay!" And if anybody notices it, "Oh, yeah. It's just something I picked up at a garage sale. It's rather nice, isn't it?"

Okay, I should probably take it as a sign that I have an odd sense of humor that I find that idea hilarious. Hilarious enough that I would rather hang a masterpiece in my bathroom than sell it for a couple mill? Mmmm. Good question. That would have to be pretty freaking funny. Good thing I'll probably never have to find out.

Game over

I was standing there waiting for the train last night. The day was at that fitful moment when the sun is shifting into a lower gear. Not-quite-sunset. And as the train was pulling up, there was something in that moment that brought up the most frightening moment of mortality.

I don't usually worry about questions of the after-life. If the hellfire and brimstone preachers of my youth are right, I'm going straight to hell for any number of reasons. No big deal. The idea of hell doesn't really bother me. Not enough to make me straighten up and fly right, at least. And if the Buddhists are right, reincarnation seems more irritating than anything else; in a "Oh, crap. You mean I have to do this all over again?" sort of way. And the idea of "you live, you die, the End" isn't really that disturbing either. I can accept the Great Nothing.

But the thing that occured to me was, what if there is something after you die, but you only get to do it if you did well here? What if life is pass/fail? The chance could be that you get one chance to live here, and if you get it, really get it, then you get to go on. If not, it's the old "worms crawl in, worms crawl out" and nothing more. Like an arcade game where, if you play well you get to go on to the next level, and if you suck it's all over. And you only get one quarter.

For an agnostic like me, that's one scary proposition. I mean, what's the criteria for living well? Who gets to make that decision? Is it written in someone's holy book? Or is it just up to you to figure it out? Living well can mean a whole lot of things. There are some people who lived good, pure, productive, benevolent lives, and been miserable as hell from cradle to grave. And there are people who've been blighters and bastards their whole lives, who in the end die in peace because they've lived without fear or regret and tasted every forbidden fruit. Maybe only one of them had the answer. I'm not sure which one.

Who knows? Maybe if I want to go to the next level, I should jump into Barney the Wonder Truck and drive out to Eldorado and see if Warren Jeffs is looking for a cell block wedding. I could be wife, what? 49? It might save my immortal soul. I'm guessing probably not. But it's not really the heaven or hell, saved or damned thing that disturbs me. It's that there might be a life after this. Something more. Another whole existence to live, to figure out, to experience. And if I don't figure this out, I won't get my shot at whatever that is. I hate missing out.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Whoo. Gonna try to get back in the blogging habit. I've been down to about 3 brain cells and I've needed all 3 of them to get through the day. I ran up to Arkansas for my cousin's wedding. Don't ask me why this put my mental capacity to its limits, but there you have it.

As far as the road trip goes, it was pretty good. Nice bonding time with my sister. Since she got married last summer, we don't get to spend as much time together, so we have
to take our opportunities to hang out where we can. We listened to a bunch of good music, stopped for BBQ at Big Jake's in Hope, AR (hometown of Mr. Bill Clinton) and had some of t
he most fantastic fried sweet potatoes on the planet, laughed a lot, and just generally gabbed about the 6,000 things we would have talked about every day back when we lived together but don't get the chance to much any more.

We ran down to Little Rock on Friday night to see Huey Lewis & the News. Awesome. Just pure awesome. Huey looks pretty freaking good. I'd swear he hasn't put on a pound since the 80s. And his voice is still in fine form. The band did the hits (to which I duly sang along), and some
new tunes. Basically, the fulfillment of many teenage dreams. An
d I close with a shot that my sister "accidentally" took of
Huey's butt. You're welcome.

TIME: Quotes of the Day