Monday, September 30, 2013

Arising From the Ashes of its Predecessor

Many moons ago I woke up in a hospital after a pretty horrific car wreck. My car had been broad-sided and torn in half - everything from the wind shield on down was on the other side of the road. For whatever reason, I ended up with no major injuries. I had maybe 6 stitches in my knee and 5 stitches on my head. That's it. No brain injury at all. I realize how much of a game changer that could've been. I could've woken up to a brand new me. Like these two artists, would I have been able to forge a new identity from what remand of the old me?

I am humbled by the life they have managed to create for themselves. We, the audience, can only peer inside their lives and never be able to understand what it would mean to rebuild yourself with no memories for a point of reference.

I highly recommend watching Marwencol - you will be blown away. I've watched 2 fantastic movies this year, and Marwencol is one of them.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

I Should've Been a Fan of The Cars

 I never cared for The Cars when they "came onto the scene". I never cared for that new wave rock synth sound. I absolutely refused to give it a listen. I longed for what I though of as the "true" rock groups - Led Zeppelin for example. Yes, I am rolling my eyes as I type this. I thought that Ric Ocasek sang all the songs and that it was basically vocals over synth. I'm convinced now that The Cars were the perfect antidote to the testosterone fueled mega-super groups who rented jets to get from point A to point B to avoid checking out of hotels. "Has anyone taken groupie roll call yet?" Yawn.

My brother and I lived with my grandmother and we used to watch Midnight Special on Friday nights. By the time The Cars made an appearance on Midnight Special, my grandmother had passed away and we were living with my dad and step mother. This was a real game changer. My dad ruled the TV and that was that. If he didn't want to watch something that was that. We were never able to watch Midnight Special again (that was the least of our worries, however).

I'm wondering if I'd had a chance to watch that episode I would've seen that The Cars were a real band and they were probably worth following. The synth/keyboards added this additional layer that sort of blended with the guitars. I must say, they picked the ultimate name for an American band. Ric Ocasek played rhythm guitar and wrote the songs. He embraced his odd appearance by choosing very cool, modified rockabilly jackets with wacky ties. Ben Orr sang at least half the songs. While he actually looked like a rock star, I don't get the impression he acted like one. Clearly the camera guy had a bit of thing for Ben while filming this performance. I had no idea that Ric and Ben were originally from Columbus, Ohio, which proves that, yes, cool people can come from the great Midwest. They were friends in high school and clearly each other's alter ego. Greg, Elliot, and David seemed like those really nerdy but talented guys you'd know in high school.

I have to admit, "...I don't mind you hanging out and talking in your sleep..." is adorable compared to the in-your-face command to ..."squeeze my lemon..." Yep, I can see myself cruising around in the summer listening to The Cars on my eight tracker player if I had it to do over.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

40 Days of Dating - You Can't Fight Pheromones

Confession: Like a large number of other folks, I followed the 40 Days of Dating blog. I also admit to voting that the pair would not be together at the end of the experiment. I never thought they were right for each other. There's always a good reason someone is single even though they've dated 65 females. I'm still amazed he could get women to go out with him. Tim always appeared quite odd looking to me in pictures. What was going on here?  I couldn't put my finger on it until I realized he has a massive comb over. I'm bringing this up since he seems to go to great lengths to focus on someones short comings (wrong color shoes, hates job, wears too much black) and he's not willing to deal with the CO. Tim comes off as trying too hard to look younger and just looking ridiculous in the process (too short pants, backwards ball cap, rolled up sleeves). He couldn't care less about art. Really? He came across as having a job he didn't particularly hate, but he didn't love either.

Jessica has it right. Thanks to evolution, and the chemicals released in the brain during orgasm, couples bond. Online dating will never work. We can't pick our preferred mate off of the shelf; we have to smell them. Have you ever met someone who is physically attractive but there's just nothing there once you get closer? On the other hand, have you met someone who you initally thought wouldn't be someone you'd spend time with only to find you are completely captivated by the smell of their skin and shape of their teeth? You can't fight pheromones.

Initially I thought Tim had the higher profile job of the two. It turns out Jessica is a partner at Sagmeister & Walsh. Oh! What a finding this turned out to be. I don't recall ever hearing about Stefan Sagmeister before. Talk about a truly interesting person! At 52 he has this effortless boy-ish charm of someone who is quite clever but quite humble at the same time. I've trawled YouTube for his videos. Below Stefan talks about the power of taking time off.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Silver Linings Playbook

This is going to sound terrible, but I really didn't care for this movie. I really got tired of the "trash-bag" gag; that was funny once. I think the thing that really rubbed me the wrong the way was the main character's obsession with the crappy ex-wife. In real life it drives me nuts when people refuse to move on when their SO has replaced them with someone new. I realize that sounds pretty darn cold. I sound like some know-it-all who has it all figured out. Yawn.  Yes, know-it-alls are boring.

Now that I am thinking about it, I've known several Pats in my life. Sometimes the Pats were female but for the most part, they were male. I can remember a few times where it had been six+ months since the person had dumped them for someone else and the Pats would be plotting the reunion/re-hookup. I guess I have this built in defense mechanism - if they don't want me - great - good riddance - it's been swell - I can do better. Don't let someone drag you to the bottom of the lake.

SLP is one of those movies that explains everything to the audience. That is something I really don't like in a movie; it's not necessary to spell everything out for me. Near the beginning of the movie, Pat is talking with his therapist. The therapist tells Pat the incident that led to his trip to the Baltimore mental health facility. Uh....not sure there was any value add in doing that. It get it, I got it!

Ok, so it wasn't all bad. De Niro showed us how it's done; that man can act! And it wasn't all crazy-man stuff for Pat as he ends up standing up for his friends, even though it means getting himself in trouble. Anupam Kher, Bend it like Beckham, makes an appearance as the court appointed therapist. Chris Tucker, Ruby Rhod in The Fifth Element (loved that role), plays Danny, the Baltimore mental health facility friend who keeps popping up unannounced. Jennifer Lawrence has to be one of the best young actresses on the planet, but I feel she could really play a character with a bit more depth. Man, she was just amazing in Winter's Bone.