Friday, May 29, 2009

French Lovemaking Robots From Outer Space

Outline I wrote for a film when I was 16:

-Smoke ring circles frame. We see a bird's-eye view of Love: a guy. A player, womanizer, whatever. Seductive. Ultraseductive. He has a string of women around him. Not real, meaningless relationships. He meets a man named Courtier who is also seductive, but this man attracts beautiful, intelligent, meaningful women. The first man wants to know the secret. The cool man says it is pointless to divulge. Because he is one of the...


-French Lovemaking Robots take over the world: University of Chicago campus for beach scenes.
-Robots walk out of water and onto beach.
-Robots wear all black? Silver? Purple???
-How do they take over the world? Putting something in the water? Seducing world leaders? Through informational pamphlets?
-Fred Astaire, Gene Kelley, Buster Keaton: Robot Triumverate? Not French...
-Look up who Sartre is.

I watched a lot of Moulin Rouge in high school.

Thursday, May 21, 2009


No one makes TV shows about blue-collar teenagers who do arty stuff. People make TV shows about blue-collar teenagers who do football, basketball, somesuch town-pride-saving sport. TV Shows about Arty Teens are reserved for the upper-crusty, and maybe the retarded. But normal folk trying a hand at singing, dancing, a heartening combo of the two? Get a fucking grip. Also: off primetime.

Being a once-upon-a-time blue-collar teenager who did arty stuff, my heart goes out to "glee." It's a dramedy from the peep behind "Nip/Tuck," and its got guts stout with dorkiness and feelings. Read: MY BAG. Even though the kids who star in it are scrubbed to within an inch of pure Hollywood perfection, the words they're saying and feelings they're swimming in seem to sound true, lower-middle-classian depths.

I go crazy for mass media that deigns to plumb the world beyond Real Housewives and High School Musicals made in Hills Heaven. Mostly because it's a world most of us live in. It's not rough & tumble. It's not carefree and provided for, either. It's a socioeconomic bracket where people have cell phones and insurmountable, petty debt. People live paycheck-to-paycheck. People "aspire" to low-end mall department store heights. And while people are not what money they make or products they buy, we live in a culture that wants us to be. And no one wants to be cut-rate. We try to be bigger, better, but we're realistic. We limit our aspirations to the most practical and easily achievable. We don't do Art. It's for Snobs: the only thing worse than being low-class. That caste of people who get everything they want and more without ever trying. Who waste time on celebrating themselves and "exploring" the unneccessary. Who rub their luxury to do so in in everyone else's face.

One of Jane Lynch's lines from the pilot is "You can have your little glee club, but make sure those kids don't think they're something they're not."

Hats off to a show, and its tandem group of makers, who are throwing out a signal that says doing what you love doesn't just amount to killing time. That you are whatever the fuck you think you are. That's the kind of sentiment that can make a town proud. Don't stop believin.

Watch glee:

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

fail whale of a tale.

"People who believe intelligence is fixed are less resilient. If you don't believe you can learn anything from your mistakes, you won't welcome failure with open arms.
But students who are taught that the brain is plastic and that they can become smarter and more competent—that the brain grows, like a muscle, when you work it hard—show a spike in grades and enjoy school more. Because they're less afraid to fail, they succeed more."

Read this:
Then this:
And for good measure, this:


If you took the base of someone's spine mid-electrocution and hotwired it with a really fussy game of OPERATION!, then drenched the mess in Diet Dr Pepper, that is how jumpy I am right now.

Mostly because I have been hitting the DDP sauce pretty hard today.

And also because I'm lucky enough to be in a moment in life where I'm "getting it", pretty hard. Not that way. This way: being really happy, making a go at the things I really want to be making a go at, mostly succeeding, and learning a lot from when I don't. Also: about to move into an apartment with two of my favorite people on the planet. People I know are doing well. Feeling good. Getting theirs. Also, also: the weather's getting nicer, and I'm feeling downright saucy.

All this stuff makes up one giant good feeling, sheathing a bunch of smaller good feelings. Knives of possibility poised to be thrown at moving targets: bright patches of color dancing in the dark, just asking for connection.

It's enough to make your nerves shake if you pause to think about it.

Hitting PLAY!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

And now a word from Neil Gaiman.

I first came into contact with this poem about a year ago. I was lucky enough to be at a Neil Gaiman event at New York Comic Con, and he read it to the audience- directly after Bill Hader introduced him, and before he read the best chapter from the Graveyard Book.

The end of it really caught me the first time I heard it. It is strange to think a 40some British man who has mostly known success in his life also knows exactly how it feels to wait for a phone call you don't have much business hoping will come. Strange, and comforting.

The poem is called The Day the Saucers Came, and it's just great.

* * * * *
That Day, the saucers landed. Hundreds of them, golden,
Silent, coming down from the sky like great snowflakes,
And the people of Earth stood and
stared as they descended,
Waiting, dry-mouthed, to find out what waited inside for us
And none of us knowing if we would be here tomorrow
But you didn’t notice because

That day, the day the saucers came, by some some coincidence,
Was the day that the graves gave up their dead
And the zombies pushed up through soft earth
or erupted, shambling and dull-eyed, unstoppable,
Came towards us, the living, and we screamed and ran,
But you did not notice this because

On the saucer day, which was zombie day, it was
Ragnarok also, and the television screens showed us
A ship built of dead-men’s nails, a serpent, a wolf,
All bigger than the mind could hold,
and the cameraman could
Not get far enough away, and then the Gods came out
But you did not see them coming because

On the saucer-zombie-battling-gods
day the floodgates broke
And each of us was engulfed by genies and sprites
Offering us wishes and wonders and eternities
And charm and cleverness and true
brave hearts and pots of gold
While giants feefofummed across
the land and killer bees,
But you had no idea of any of this because

That day, the saucer day, the zombie day
The Ragnarok and fairies day,
the day the great winds came
And snows and the cities turned to crystal, the day
All plants died, plastics dissolved, the day the
Computers turned, the screens telling
us we would obey, the day
Angels, drunk and muddled, stumbled from the bars,
And all the bells of London were sounded, the day
Animals spoke to us in Assyrian, the Yeti day,
The fluttering capes and arrival of
the Time Machine day,
You didn’t notice any of this because
you were sitting in your room, not doing anything
not even reading, not really, just
looking at your telephone,
wondering if I was going to call.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

this is the shit.

And I am so happy & proud to be part of it.

Please keep every body part you have crossed for this/us/MTSS!

I got mad peeps.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

"For a second I thought he was gonna bust out some RENT action."

My sister, a friend, and I saw the Springsteen show at the United Center last night. My sister astutely observed how awesome, dramatic, and more than a little ridiculous Bruce's stage antics were in that title sentence. I am still processing it, and will probably write more later, but for now know that there were definitely points where you could swear Bruce was going to break out in "525,600 Minutes" AND Jay Weinberg should be called The Dentist cuz that boy knows how to fill!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

best comic video about men's fashion of the day

link stolen from my friend Lacy's blog. Apparently she knows these people. AMAZING!

Monday, May 4, 2009

stripper pretty

I got laid off recently (teen-centric film production companies: not recession-proof) and while searching for new means of employ, I keep getting mad at internships and Hooters.

Hooters was always the joke last-resort in high school and summers between semesters of college. If Borders doesn't hire me, I'll just work at Hooters. Man, if Oberweis and Old Navy don't want me I'm going to have to work at Hooters. Ewww, don't work at Hooters. Get a job at Chuck E Cheese!

Please note my rack has never been stacked. I've got enough to fill a wine-glass, sure- but not a margarita glass the size of a meathead. Hooters has never realistically been an option for me or most of my friends. Still, it was there. The last place on earth I would ever want to work, but would dutifully drag myself to if I ever got knocked up or something and/or had to let go of a more noble daily grind to Make Ends Meet.

Now I look in the mirror and toss mirthless laughs at the pale, quirky reflection staring back at me. I have new last resort options. Opening my own chain of franchise restaurants featuring girls in flirty print frocks, thick-rimmed glasses, toting requisite (conversationally) titillating copies of Dorothy Parker stories and Bruce Springsteen records while serving slobbering onlookers buffalo wings and bourbons, or going back in time to star in German Expressionist films.

There's more money in the restaurant. I think I'll call it Zooey's.