HOW TO GET THE WHOLE WORLD DESPERATE TO SEE A MOVIE

Okay–I watched a segment on the PBS Newshour broadcast yesterday on the topic of Sony’s decision to pull the plug on “The Interview”.  The arguments for and against Sony’s action were equally valid.

But I thought surely Sony would release this movie on Blu-ray and/or DVD.  Now I read that it has no plans to do so.

Why?  Would Kim Jong Un personally bomb my house?

I listened to another commentator on NPR two days ago.  He pointed out that, for a film, any publicity–negative or positive–is good publicity.  And he’s right.  I wouldn’t have particularly wanted to watch “The Interview” at all, were it not for this bizarre chain of events surrounding it.

DANCES WITH GOATS: A METAPHOR FOR LIFE?

The following is from MORE OF PAUL HARVEY’S THE REST OF THE STORY, by Paul Aurandt:

The Goat-Man of Juan Fernandez

There is a print of a rather detailed eighteenth-century drawing, pastoral setting, the focus of which is a scruffy-looking fellow dancing with a goat.

The ragged character in the portrait really lived.  His name was Alexander Selkirk, and he was the Goat-Man of Juan Fernandez.

As for many young men in the dawning eighteenth century, life on land was not agreeable to Alexander Selkirk.

Back home in Scotland it seemed he was always in some sort of trouble.  Indeed, parish records show that he was cited more than once for misbehavior in church.

In May of 1703, Alex, now twenty-seven, said good-bye to all that, joined a privateering expedition to the South Seas.

Privateers, pirates for hire.

Sixteen months later the ship came to a small island four hundred miles off the coast of Chile.  The island was named for Juan Fernandez, the sixteenth-century mariner who had discovered it and had tried unsuccessfully to colonize it.

Anyway, there was Alex, twenty-eight years old, the appointed sailing master of the privateer.   As the ship was about to leave, Alex and the captain got into an argument.

Tempers flared; Alex gathered his possessions and demanded to be put ashore.  He  was.

“Now what do you say?” We can still hear him shouting from the shore.  “You don’t dare sail without me!”

But the captain standing on the bridge ignored Alex, issued the command to hoist anchor.

Alex’s dramatic ploy had backfired.

Having considered himself indispensable, he was now wading out to his armpits, calling after the ship, pleading for the captain’s forgiveness.

But the stubborn captain had sailed away, never to return.

Thus began THE REST OF THE STORY, the real-life legend of the Goat-Man of Juan Fernandez.  For the explorer Fernandez, upon evacuating the island two centuries before, had left a few goats behind.

The goats would multiply, thrive.  And because they did, abandoned Alexander Selkirk stayed alive.

The wild goats provided meat and milk and skins for clothing.  Those he tamed became his friends.

Four years and four months would pass before Alex was rescued.  He barely remembered how to speak.

He returned to England, became page-one news.  Books were written about him, including one by Alex himself.

Thus this comic eighteenth-century drawing.  A pastoral setting, trees in the background.  And a thatched hut.  And in the foreground, a ragged, bearded, long-haired man, dancing with a goat.

For Alexander Selkirk, the imperiled privateer, the Scottish seaman whose temper got him stranded on a dot of soil in the Pacific–the Goat-Man of Juan Fernandez–was the flesh-and-blood model for fiction author Daniel Defoe.

He was the original, the real-life, Robinson Crusoe.

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A MESSAGE FOR KIM JONG UN

HACK THIS, YOU TOTALITARIAN COMMUNIST BASTARD!

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AN UNDERSTATEMENT OF BIBLICAL PROPORTIONS

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55 : 8-9

TOO MUCH TO ASK, YET I ASK ANYWAY

I just want out of this goddamned time–not this place, this time.

THESE ARE THE DAYS OF MIRACLE AND WONDER AND DON’T CRY BABY, DON’T CRY, DON’T CRY DON’T CRY

It was a slow day

And the sun was beating

On the soldiers by the side of the road

There was a bright light

A shattering of shop windows

The bomb in the baby carriage

Was wired to the radio

 

These are the days of miracle and wonder

This is the long distance call

The way the camera follows us in slo-mo

The way we look to us all

The way we look to a distant constellation

That’s dying in a corner of the sky

These are the days of miracle and wonder

And don’t cry baby, don’t cry

Don’t cry

 

It was a dry wind

And it swept across the desert

And it curled into the circle of birth

And the dead sand

Falling on the children

The mothers and the fathers

And the automatic earth

 

These are the days of miracle and wonder

This is the long distance call

The way the camera follows us in slo-mo

The way we look to us all

The way we look to a distant constellation

That’s dying in a corner of the sky

These are the days of miracle and wonder

And don’t cry baby, don’t cry

Don’t cry

 

It’s a turn-around jump shot

It’s everybody jump start

It’s every generation throws a hero up the pop charts

Medicine is magical and magical is art

The Boy in the Bubble

And the baby with the baboon heart

 

And I believe

These are the days of lasers in the jungle

Lasers in the jungle somewhere

Staccato signals of constant information

A loose affiliation of millionaires

And billionaires and baby

These are the days of miracle and wonder

This is the long distance call

The way the camera follows us in slo-mo

The way we look to us all

The way we look to a distant constellation

That’s dying in a corner of the sky

These are the days of miracle and wonder

And don’t cry baby, don’t cry

Don’t cry

 

The Boy in the Bubble

Lyrics by Paul Simon

1986

STILL YOU KEEP BREAKING THE SHELL

It’s the old rule that drunks have to argue

and get into fights.

The lover is just as bad.  He falls into a hole.  

But down in that hole he finds something shining,

worth more than any amount of money or power.  

 

Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street.  

I took it as a sign to start singing,

falling up into the bowl of sky.  

The bowl breaks.  Everywhere is falling everywhere.

Nothing else to do.

 

Here’s the new rule:  break the wineglass,

and fall into the glassblower’s breath.  

 

This that is tormented and very tired,

tortured with restraints like a madman,

this heart.

                  Still you keep breaking the shell

to get the taste of its kernel!

 

Rumi

(translated by Coleman Barks, et alia)

AS I WANDER AROUND THIS WRECK OF A TIME

Just on the border of your waking mind,

There lies another time

Where darkness and light are one.

And as you tread the halls of sanity

You feel so glad to be unable to go beyond.

 

I have a message from another time.

 

 

Well I came a long way to be here today

And I left you so long on this avenue.

And here I stand in the strangest land

Not knowing what to say or do

As I gaze around at these strangers in town.

I guess the only stranger is me,

And I wonder, yes I wonder, is this

The way life’s meant to be.

 

Although it’s only a day since I was taken away

And left standing here looking in wonder.

The ground at my feet maybe it’s just the old street

But everything that I know lies under.

And when I see what they’ve done to this place that was home,

Shame is all that I feel.

And I wonder, yes I wonder, is this

The way life’s meant to be.

 

Too late, too late to cry, the people say.

Too late for you, too late for me

You’ve come so far, now you know everything

My friend

Just look and see the wonders of our world.  

 

As I wander around this wreck of a town

Where people never speak aloud

With its ivory towers and its plastic flowers

I wish I was back in 1981

Just to see your face, instead of this place

Now I know what you mean to me.

And I wonder, yes I wonder, is this

The way life’s meant to be.

 

 

A penny in your pocket, suitcase in your hand,

They won’t get you very far,

Now you’re a 21st century man.

 

Fly across the city, rise above the land.

You can do most anything,

Now you’re a 21st century man.  

 

Though you ride on the wheels of tomorrow,

You still wander the fields of your sorrow.  

 

One day you’re a hero, next day you’re a clown,

There’s nothing that is in between.

Now you’re a 21st century man.

 

You should be so happy, you should be so glad,

So why are you so lonely, you 21st century man.

 

You stepped out of a dream

Believing everything was gone.  

Return with what you’ve learnt they’ll kiss the ground you walk upon.  

 

Things ain’t how you thought they were.

Nothing have you planned.

So pick up your penny and your suitcase,

You’re not a 21st century man.

 

Though you ride on the wheels of tomorrow,

You still wander the fields of your sorrow,

21st century man.

 

 

PrologueThe Way Life’s Meant To Be, & 21st Century Man

From the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) album, Time (1981)

Lyrics (and music) by Jeff Lynne

WHAT WOULD MARTIN LUTHER KING SAY?

But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice.  In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds.  Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline.  We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence.  Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.  The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny.  They have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.  We cannot walk alone.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

August 28, 1963

Once again, a community of Americans has automatically determined guilt and innocence based solely on race–specifically the color of Darren Wilson’s and Michael Brown’s skin.

And once again, a community of Americans has engaged in senseless rioting, looting, and violence based on this same automatic determination of guilt and innocence.

If Darren Wilson were black, and Michael Brown were white, would this senseless rioting, looting, and violence be occurring?

If you truly believe in Dr. King’s dream, you will make it a reality.

Martin+Luther+King,+Jr.+01

THIS INSTRUMENT OF DUST

O FRIEND!  this body is His lyre;

He tightens its strings, and draws from it the melody of Brahma.  

If the strings snap and the keys slacken, then to dust must this instrument of dust return:  

Kabir says:  “None but Brahma can evoke its melodies.”

Kabir

(translated by Rabindranath Tagore)


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