Monday, September 15, 2014

Things I don't want to comment on

Ramblings Post #269
These topics keep either popping back up or begged for attention in the moment I just couldn't get to them. No matter how many times I nailed that door shut. By the way, me cleaning up my junk room was NOT one of the reasons I couldn't get to these, although it should have been. I'm coming for you room! I don't want to comment, but I am. Because sometimes you just need to mumble a bit and then stumble your way the bar and pretend you just arrived.

Sometimes, the hair on the back of your neck stands up, the sensation of uneasy fills in the bottom of your gut, your feet itch, a familiar sound or the movie cliche of decade - You've just got a bad feeling about this. None of your five senses registers it, but your brain suddenly suggests you probably should be somewhere else like, now. That's what my literary skills are doing right.

In between studying for another test to take I had been working on a project, a story that sprang up after a writing exercise, and then erroneously got into a online conversation with a black feminist which is a whole different story in and of itself, and so now I'm behind in my own personal schedule. But these are front page items that demand I say something. Well, not demand, more insist. And I am reluctantly. Even though I got a bad feeling about this.

ISIS (or whatever the new designation is)
My personal feeling is that we should leave it the Middle East constituency to handle this threat, the latest in a seemingly endless line of threats. Only our foreign policy has historically neutered all our allies except Israel, which is a whole other set of comments I have not desire to make. Has any one just tried offer them some pizza? I mean like real, real good pizza. Or nachos?

Ferguson, MO
I don't want to speak on Ferguson again because by now I thought it would be over. They arrested Zimmerman after a month, I mean really. And now because the Prosecutor has essentially told the grand jury to figure it out for yourselves, making no recommendation for a charge, this will only continue to get ugly. One can only hope at this point the Feds step in before this just gets too blatant. So, which rap star concerned citizen is going to stand out there for the voter registration drive?

Stuff Involving Celebrities or them being pregnant.
This isn't worth the time it took me to write this sentence.

Joan Rivers
She could be a bitter old lady, contentious and at times extremely nasty. But she paved the way for a whole lot of women comics to come behind her. While Lucy was family friendly and goofy, Joan let the ladies behind her talk about sex and sexuality, and stood shoulder to shoulder with her male contemporaries, true comic heavyweights. She might not have shared your views on the topics you deemed important, like feminism, so now after death you want to demonize her? Is that who we've become? Where some talk about being a feminist, she actually was one.

Ray Rice
As currently the only one acceptable way to talk about this issue is in trying to decide if Rice is evil personified, the personfication of evil or maybe a person of evilfication; and which NFL officer should commit hari-kari first for lying; or how the NFL now needs to give all it's profits to women in restitution, means I'm not going to discuss it here. I'm not going to defend Rice, what he did was wrong plain and simple, but there are too many other lessons here that the collective rage is missing and doesn't want to talk about because it provide less time to call Rice evil. Which is kinda sad. 

Barkeep. It's been a minute, hasn't it. A bourbon and sprite for old times sake. Three cubes.

Friday, September 12, 2014

The House I Want (Part Two)

Planning for the Future Post #2 

I couldn't find a picture of the room I'm describing, but I like this...
The house I want will have a library. Not just a bookshelf or two, but a library. A whole room dedicated to the idea of reading. I've gone to people's homes...people who have children...and seen nary a book or bookshelf. There are so many things wrong with that. Books allow hear the voices and ideas of those beyond our time, or to learn the thoughts of people on the other side of the world.  To not read,  ugh.

I'd like it to be a good sized room, with natural light if possible, with lots of wood in a burnished dark brown. Floor to ceiling bookshelves. A comfortable leather chair or two, with ottomans. Chairs big enough to curl up in and get lost in an adventure, or fall asleep in with book resting on your chest. A small book table or two. A little art. If there is room, maybe a bookshelf that hides a secret door that leads to a little room where I keep acrylic models of spaceships and 3D maps of places.  

No computer...that's a separate room, no stereo, just books. A place where you could sit down with a good book and get lost in your own mind.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Odd Quotes

Is the good life really that good?
 "Sometimes when people get what they want, they realize how limited their goals were."
~ Internet

Monday, September 1, 2014

How should the Simpsons end?

Ramblings Post #268
This question was posed to a group I write in/read/pretend I'm a part of, and the whole thing got me thinking. I gave a trite answer then, but I've put a little thought into after sitting through some old episodes during the FXX marathon which is over 10 days long. That's a lot of TV. One person in my group said when he started watching the Simpson's he was Bart's age, and now he's Homer's age. It's a cultural milestone, whether we like it on not. So, I put a little thought into it.  

From Fox, Hulu, the Internet and now FXX
Does, what has become the longest running scripted program on TV, finish out its days with a whimper or a bang? Is a Seinfeld ending, a MASH ending or a Sopranos ending? I stopped really watching the Simpson's ages ago, even before I went back to school in middle age. But they're still chugging along, episode after episode, adding breadth to the sad South Park truism "Simpsons did it!" to every idea that can be adapted to a visual medium and minting money as they go. Why end it? Why ever? Not until you absolutely have to.  

If it were up to me, it wouldn't cop out like Dexter or the extremely disappointing How I Met Your Mother finale/last season (so bad I can't even watch the reruns now), but would actually do something the show hasn't done yet...let the characters grow older. I think it should flash forward 15 years...and then they should do a whole last season at that point in time. It's just far enough in the future for things to have changed, but close enough for it to not to be that much. 

A new opening sequence based on the original should set the tone for the season in the first show, all the familiar characters who have evolved. Bart at community college, still writing on the chalk board before skateboarding home. Lisa in a Springfield U college group, listening to jazz on her phone before dancing away. Marge with Maggie at the supermarket, only now Maggie is grown with her own ear buds in.  Consider what new products they might put on the conveyor - which could worked in during the season. Finally Homer, still at the power plant, moving a bit slower. It all continues as normal with the couch gag, only now someone always falls off because the couch is now too small.

The season proceeds as normal, only everyone aged up. It's the near future, no flying cars or Mars colonies or aliens, just slightly more advance technology, except Mr. Burns who is still alive through the miracle of technology.

The characters are older, some fatter, some fitter, all having followed natural arcs. Moe finally found someone, but now wants to return to being single. Apu's kids now run the various Kwik-e-marts around town. Wiggum is still Police Chief, but now Ralph Wiggum is a deputy. Mayor Quimby is still mayor, just older, more corrupt, with Nelson as his young aide. Milhouse is at Springfield U, but still hangs out with Bart at the community college.  

And so it's different, but a closer look and it seems like nothing has changed - Homer is still the comic everyman wrestling with the same problems of being a good father, Bart is still a prankster and now slacker, Lisa still can't make friends even in college (she found out Springfield diplomas aren't really accepted anywhere), and Marge still frets about everyone. Throughout the season Maggie gets the classic just off-screen character treatment - the other characters talk about stuff Maggie has said or quote Maggie, but the audience never hears her speak, and extension of the joke from other in the future episodes.

During the last season, you have two or three episodes that are essentially repeats - copies of the old episodes word-for-word with the characters older, reacting slightly differently (or in Bart's case exactly the same showing that he hasn't grown up). Someone might even mention that the whole thing feels familiar. But now we get to experience the world with Lisa the frustrated intellectual in teenage/young adult situations, Bart a little edgier but still as silly. Maybe a whole episode of just missing hearing Maggie speak, or maybe even a whole episode in silence. The shift opens a whole new set of stories to complete and round out the characters. And as we get down the last ten or so shows, we wrap the lives of the prominent side characters.  

At the start of the last episode, the person who falls off gets up and suggests they get a new couch.

In the last episode Homer retires, Lisa gets engaged to Milhouse. Bart finds out his girlfriend is pregnant and finally feels he has to grow up, and just as Maggie walks into the kitchen and takes a deep breath to speak...the screen cuts to black. 

Okay, so I went with the Soprano's ending. Sue me.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

The House I Want (Part One)

Planning for the Future Post #1

I may have told this story before, but when I first got to Atlanta many, many years ago, my brother used to do this thing to motivate himself. During his lunchtime, he'd go down to Lenox Mall, as his office was right there, and try on Rolex watches. The feel of it on his arm would encourage him to try harder, to think bigger. And although there were good times when things were unfolding as they should and he could have gone down and gotten one, he never did. I think it might have been our upbringing to some degree, in that we're not flashy people and though we dream about it we're really more substantive people.

So to motivate myself, get the old juices flowing as it were, I'm making my Rolex the idea of my dream home. It won't be my next home, which I hope to relocate to sometime in the next 24 months (God and the GA Bar Association willing), but it's coming. I will get there.
A template for a great home.
The kind of place where I'll have friends over to watch the game, dinner parties and drop-ins. A HQ from which I can jog, walk to the market for fresh fruit, or sit out on the deck with friends under a starlit sky and tell fantastic lies about how things used to be until we just can't stand it anymore. It's coming. I can feel it. I just have to keep going.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Odd Quotes

But when I get here! Oh boy, then....

Beware of Destination Addiction - a preoccupation with the idea that happiness is in the next place, the next job and with the next partner. Until you give up the idea that happiness is always somewhere else, it will never be where you are.