Monthly Archives: August 2005

“MTV Makes me Want to Smoke Crack, Fly Out the Window and I’m Never Coming Back…Awww, Get That Squeegee”

Life begins to wear me down when it consists of a different man, old enough to be my dad, aggressively throwing himself at me night after night. None of these oldtimers take no for an answer, nevermind hints, and need to be told, “Fuck off,” to disappear, more times than Beetlejuice needs his name to be repeated in order to appear. The worst is when its someone I’ve known for a while, and had a modicum of respect for to begin with. It didn’t take much persistence to shed that respect, which is now lost forever. Sorry, but that shit was ridiculous y nada mas.

For all the middleaged men who have been reading my website since the topless pic, back off. This isn’t voyeur-shuck anymore, and nobody’s gettin’ any around here. The 3rdarm is business to the point of monk focus. Bizness. Don’t shit where you eat kind of business. To everybody who sees Young Arthur and they think, “I want a piece of that,” I say: Chill out, back off.

Yesterday night’s journey to the hell house was presaged by my introduction to two of the neighborhood’s most notorious porch climbers, Shephard Dog(tattoed on bicep) and his buddy Lobo, partners for two decades in Cambridge. I had just left the grill because the bartenders were grilling me for taking my time to exit after being let home early… it was raining outside. I hustled out the door leaving a wake of snide wisecracks but did not stop at the front door to light up a cigarette because of the inclimate skies. Instead I hotfooted to under the corner plafond… I smoked on the extreme Cambridge St. side of the rain-protection and two men on the Prospect side conducted a brambly conversation using unshaven vocabulary.

Eventually they noticed me, and like strange drug animals came over to sniff me up and down. Shephard Dog (tattoed on bicep) had the small of a cigar in his mouth and requested my lighter for lighting it, which I of course passed to him in seconds flat, if only so he’d back up out of my face. The next question he asked me was what kind of drugs I wanted to buy. I saw, in the light of the street, his blackeye and the abrasions on his shaved head. I don’t know what you’re talking about, I told him. I don’t know what any of that stuff is. He and Lobo spoke back and forth in Portugese. I felt anxiety, made a joke about how young Shep looked. He gave me back my lighter and we all shook hands. Thats the kind of business I’m talking about. Meeting people is all business.

Its not hard to twice calmly repeat, “No, I don’t want a physical relationship,” but it does wear a person down repeating it repeatedly. I’m switching to, “Fuck off,” next time, irregardless of which stalker is putting pressure on me, for faster results.

In United States Patent #6,935,954 Nintendo states, “The human mind is a somewhat fragile control system. When circumstances beyond imagination are encountered, the brain must attempt to deal with the improbable and impossible as reality. Sometimes it is just too much for the individual to handle. In these instances, insanity may take hold of the individual, temporarily disabling or forcing the person into a catatonic state.”

Which I’m citing as my excuse for calling in sick to work from the hotel Tuesday morning. I felt violated by the night before, and angry. When you feel this way, my aunt told me, either clean or sleep. I went back to sleep for another four hours. I’m switching to “Fuck off,” because time is a precious resource and I don’t owe that to anybody. In the words of George Herbert Walker Bush, “Not going to do it.”

Stalker A Meet Stalker B

The oily, musky scent that 500 LB men percieve to smell as they watch me bus, hustle, and serve at the Scrod Hut, that makes their mouths water because they want to eat me, has reappeared at the raw bar, but rather in the noses of psychotic stalkers. A week or two ago I told a man, waiting for his pickup order, that he had nice frames for his glasses. They’re German, he said, bought from a German frame dealer in Watertown. That’s nice, I told him. Enjoy your takeout.

I was just being polite, but evidently the man, who we will call Ramon, got charged by the whole exchange. So charged that the carryout containers blew up in his plastic bag on the way home. Ramon complained over the phone to the manager, who informed us all during a preshift meeting of the incident, and told us to be careful closing the lids completely on the carryout containers. I know who that was, the man with the frames, I exclaimed during said meeting. Sunday night Ramon came back into the Grill, I thought to get a complimentary takeout order. He was leaning against the wall next to the door, in front of the raw bar. Waiting for his food, I bet, and called over hi to him, then looked back down at the oysters I was shucking.

When I looked back up I suddenly realized he had been talking for the last two minutes or so, to me. Having not understood a word of this I yelled, “What?” and shrugged and somewhat ignored him and got back to what I was prepping. The bar was busy and loud. Slowly, over the course of ten minutes, it dawned on me that Ramon was waiting for a seat at the raw bar. I was skeptical of this behavior. Ramon eventually grew tired and sat down near the raw bar. John served him. He talked nonstop about food and this and that, alluding to the fact that he wanted to take me out to an Italian restaurant. I was flattered but seriously. I work 70 hours a week, I told him, and have a serious person in my life that I care about.

Persistently he gave me his name and phone number on a napkin. When he left he repeated that he hoped I’d call him and that he’d come back in next Sunday. He also pronounced his name “Raymond”. Thank you I appreciate your offer, I told the man twice my age. Goodbye Ramon (pronounced like the instant noodle). Fantastique, I have raw bar regulars stalking me on two nights of the week. Let me jot that down onto my calendars. Sunday and Monday nights… plan on feeling uncomfortable.

Lets see… I washed a paycheck in the pocket of my pants and busted it today. I have been turned on to a woman that writes for Six Feet Under, Jill Soloway and she wanted to send out a copy of her book and for me and Emily to cover her booksigning on Thursday, September 15… in the Student Underground. She thinks me and Em are “editors” or something, when in fact we are artsy street attorneys. Its being held at the Center for New Words and will feature her sister (who’s coming out inspired the chapter “Lesbo Island” in her new memoir, Tiny Ladies in Shiny Pants,) as well as Rachel Dratch and some musical units. It would be groovy if she sent a book… I think I’ll have to get my yellow legal pad and spectacles and cover the event for the “paper”…

She helped produced a play in L.A. called Hollywood Hell House, about the fundamentalist haunted houses created by Pat Robertson-type soldiers of compassion. Bill Maher plays the devil. Andy Richter is Jesus. It sounds que fantastique, no?

The conclusion of the scene Exterior-Meathouse-Night from Rocky VI:

Rocky (touches his stomach): Basement- in here- I still got stuff I gotta get out.

Paulie: What stuff?

Rocky: I dunno- personal things.

Paulie: My basement’s empty.

Rocky: Maybe ya lucky-

Paulie: I know- Rocko, you ain’t gettin’ a license- never happen.

Rocky: What if I do- you with me again?

Paulie: I gotta job here.

Rocky: Yeah, but always said ya hated it.

Paulie: So? It’s better than nothin’.

Rocky: So that’s it- you’re stayin’?

Paulie (sips from a flask): Yeah, among the beef.

Rocky turns away.

Paulie: Hey. Nobody believes in ya- welcome to my friggin’ life.

Two Hours Later

Some people are like homing pidgeons and can always find the way home. Bob Dylan is not one of them, going solo off the title of his latest bio-pic, No Way Home. But I am. Even at a young age (16) I was nicknamed Mapquest by my friends in high school. Okay, so I called myself Mapquest and they just eventually made fun of me for it. Whatever, same result. Its not that I knew all of the roads, though working at the time as a prescription deliverist for the town pharmacy I knew a few (company car & gas included)… by the way, driving around my hometown in that beat up Dodge Shadow is where I officially began smoking cigarettes. I digress, rather, that my talent was to somehow always maintain the ability to deliver myself home, in a timely fashion.

Timely fashions were out of fashion earlier this evening. A friend from my hotel job came over to the Grill to have a bite to eat and say hello. Evidently crossing the bridge from Boston over to Cambridge can be traumatizing for a certain set of people, this I did not know. I was cut early from shucking last night and my friend arrived at the Grill after I’d left and gone home. I had taken a shower and was in my pajamas when I got the phone call that he was over there. I walked over to say hello, we hung out for a while, and then I was caught up in a surprise episode of the hit series Lost.

Not only are some people not born with the knack for finding their way home, some people also don’t know how to give directions. I was snaking through street after grimy street of Jamaica Plain, Newton, Chestnut Hill, not to mention past numerous hospitals and Dunken Donuts… and my navigator was silent, occasionally telling me to “Follow that car.”… hours passed… cigarettes were smoked and anxiety rose. Would we ever find the place where he lived? Rt. 9 was traversed in both the Eastern and Western directions: fruitless meanderings. “We’re adjacent to it now,” he said, hundreds of times. Whenever we passed dark forest area he insisted it was the Arnold Arboreum. “The Arnold Arboreum is adjacent to it.”

“We’re on Arbor Way,” I said. “Arboreum Way, perfect,” he replied. Circling and circling like sea gulls adjacent to a Mcdonald’s french fry orgy. Thank god he bought me a blueberry donut when he finally got out to ask the Russian immigrant woman working at Dunken Donuts for directions to Forest Hills, because my nerves were fried. It was becoming a quagmire. Finally we followed the train tracks in past Forest Hills and he located a safe corner to be dropped at. “Don’t complain about this on your website,” he told me. No. This website’s purpose is for me to complain. And complain I will.

By the way, Stalker A didn’t show Monday night. But he called and left a pissy message, which is nice.

The Meathouse Next Door to the Scrod Hut

Today I will open up with a few lines written by Sylvester Stallone from the script of his new movie, Rocky VI:

Exterior-Meathouse-Night (Rocky is walking along the loading dock with Paulie)

Paulie: Then ya brain’s tellin’ ya a bad joke- nobody’s givin’ you no title shot.

Rocky: I know- I just wanna be in the ring again.

Paulie: Why?

Rocky: See if I can do it.

Paulie: That’s it? There’s no mental disturbance?

Rocky: … No disturbance.

Paulie: Ya miss people yellin’ ya name, don’t ya?

Rocky: No… it’s for me, Paulie.

Paulie: One time around is all we get, Rocko.

Rocky: There’s still stuff in the basement.

Paulie: What’s that mean?

Rocky (touches his stomach): Basement- in here- I still got stuff I gotta get out.

Right on, Sly. Burning up the paper with that pen of yours. Those lines from Rocky VI sum up exactly why I have been put on this earth aka 3rdarm.biz… to empty the basement. Also, I found out that I am put on this Earth to see Rocky VI. The British/Indian band Cornershop has a song called Lessons Learned from Rocky I to Rocky III… maybe thats the stage I’m in now, but I know when I’m sixty four like Sly Stallone may or maynot be, I’ll be pushing from the basement. To you people reading this I’d like to quote what Ghostface Killah recently said to Jay Z in the executive offices of Def Jam:

“I just want to dump some heat on you. It’s meaty already, but I just want you to add your little extra.”

Translation: “I’ve got some great stuff on 3rdarm.biz that I’d like you to see and I would appreciate your input.”

Restaurant Week is over, but not really. The Scrod Hut will be rerunning the prix-fixe menu for the next four days. I like that. It’s very easy to order and there are fewer options than the whole menu, easing up the specifics of service and enabling myself and the other Lunch servers to focus more on the details. Speaking of the Scrod Hut, I just finally found out on Saturday what scrod actually means. I was dining out on the sidewalk of Charlie’s on Newbury St., eating a prime rib sandwich and sipping Perrier with Coco. “Scrod,” she informed me, “Means ‘special catch right off the docks’. If there is an ‘h’ in scrod (scrhod) that means it is haddock. Otherwise, it should be cod.” Emphasis on ‘should.’

Last nite I went to my friend Ro’s house and watched seven episodes of Laguna Beach until he kicked me out. He is doing vocals for a band that is practicing in Somerville, and I must say, the track they laid down in the practice room is hot. My friends from growing up in Connecticut are in a band as well, called Thrown Undertow. They opened up for this band, deSol, whose track I heard on Long Island’s Progressive Radio … now you can catch it on 3rdarm.biz Shoutcast.

Only 9 more shifts until I have a whole day off. That day is slated for a project, the movement of a solidwood rollaway desk of drawers from East Hartford, CT down to around New Haven. I am putting a team together and will be renting a vehicle…

Driving Around Cambridge

No easy answer as to how I am already up and on my 3rd cup of coffee, awake and shakin’ and already up on my 3rd arm.biz. My old roommates slept over on a palette I made up for them in the living room… I took all the cushions off the couches and made a palette on the floor and they slept there with the windows open because the August air is so crispy clear & cleansing. I drove over to Harvard Sq. just before 8 this morning to drop one of the sleepers-over off at a job interview… during the drive I listened to Brian Wilson and Bob Dylan square off single to single on Emerson’s listener supported, commercial free radio. ‘I want to chow down my favorite vegetables’ back to back with ‘All I really wanna do is baby eat vegetables…’ I am confused.

No parties for people going to California! We’ll have a coming back to the East Coast party for you when you get back. To paraphrase my soliloquy when I went over the edge at work on Wednesday… “Okay… okay… okay… okay… ok, ok, ok… okay. Okay? Okay… Okay… Okayyyy” ad infintum. Under stress & fatique its very easy for me to run out of words to say, and I stay on the fence, repeating Okay so that everythings Okay. Its fine. I want to get a small gasoline tank for my brain so that when I get really fatigued I can rip the cord and fire it up. Thoughts could smell like freshly cut grass. Because my brain sits on a bed of grass. Better than seaweed, less bugs. Problem is, rabbits eat grass. Have I lost it? Am I out of it? Why don’t I just get it together? What was the name of the 6 foot pink rabbit in that movie about imaginary friends?

I passed out last night listening to Israeli pop music with the headphone cord wound seven times around my neck and the light on. I instructed my old roommate, Liz to creep into my room with this gnarly stick that my sister picked up on the sidewalk in front of JFK’s birthplace and give me a hard jab in the ribs, but when she was one step into my room I was sitting up in bed staring 1000 yards past her. The prophet spoke, “There will be coffee.” I got the pink monkey back from the raw bar yesterday, its name is Julep and it cost me $20. from the Reverend. But the money is worth it because its a very expensive and deluxe stuffed animal. The Rev blessed me and said the Lord would bring back my $20. one hundred fold. One thousand fold, I thought to myself, shaking his holy hand. My breath right now is as bad as it gets.

Riders on the storm who have been paying close attention may note that I promised pictures of Julep. For $20. of course I’m going to take pictures. For $20. I will send you a picture of myself shaving my birth mark with an electric razor, and the money will creep back to you, one hundred fold. The dollars will line your pockets, one by one, inching into your pockets as my birth mark hair grows back up at a creep. The security team at the hotel has been throwing pennies at me in the morning for two straight days. You know the way you can pinch the penny and flip it at someone, thats what they do to me at the security checkpoint. I dance and shield my eyes, because I’m cautious, and would hate to have a smarting wound from a penny pincher, if that makes cents.

I wonder if I will have the power today. I want to be the main man… Does my birthmark hair grow fast as grass?

Waiting for that Feeling… (but eventually it does stop getting late & start getting early)

“Slide your feet up the street, bend your back/ Shift your arm, then you pull it back/ Life is hard, you know (oh whey oh) So strike a pose on a Cadillac.” sing the Bangles in their hit, Walk like an Egyptian. I bring you good news from this crazy life! Like Sherman marched through Georgia, or Christ on a stallion, I have blazed through the first seven shifts of Restaurant Week and am now hotstepping like a pharaoh to the sea of the Weekend and the promise of an Afternoon Off. Only three more shifts and I have the entire afternoon and evening off. The week is beginning to climax, as in many lines of dominos converging on a central Artery.

But like Morpheus in Reloaded I have planted in the past a sword for myself to wield against my future foes. People say I’m crazy, doing what I’m doing, and give me all kinds of warnings to save me from ruin, but in effect, I’m okay. I know how to play the game but I’m lazy, dreaming my life away. I’m doing fine watching shadows on the wall, but sitting here making the wheels go ’round and ’round, I feel not like I’m off the ball, but that I can be the ball. No problem, the solution to the maze of Restaurant Week is time, which acts like gravity on a marble through many traps and switchbacks, and that marble is me. I love to watch myself roll, hit walls, and fall fall fall… Today I served a 95 year old woman and I just wanted to say, its free. I got emotional for a second when I told her to enjoy the rest of her day. Reminds me of the Talib Kweli line… “For eyes that won’t see another year… it’s another day.”

But who knows how long that woman will live. I have many questions, as children often do, but one observation I am quite sure of is that we people are tough, resilient survivors. Comets from the sky don’t even scare me, nor do terrorists, tsunamis, weapons, realpolitick, the streets, colored… the one fear that remains in my mind is the absence of people.

Recurring people make me happy. For example, Tuesday night after eating a delivered club sandwich, I went out to Harvard Sq. the Charles Hotel (making lots of money can be so sweet). At around 2:30 AM I was finishing up a beer and talking to this guy I’d just met about the averted closing of CBGB’s and our mutual insane friend, Monoman. We said goodbye eventually, and I took a cab home. The cabdriver just happened to be the very same man that took me home the last time I went out to the Charles Hotel, the cabbie who saved my cellphone for me because I left it in his cab that night, and drove it over to the Hess Station for me the next day. Today at the East Coast Grill I served the girl who served me drinks last night at Charlies Kitchen. As John Lennon observed, watching the wheels, Instant Karma.

Anticlimactic Moment #2

Once more I was released from my duties early, this time for imminent duty.  It was around 8:30 PM on Tuesday night when I felt the cement mixer of my intestines churning, and I knew that all the meat I’d consumed over the weekend had come full circle, and was now knocking on the door marked with the glowing red flourescent Exit sign.  I told my general manager, who was helping me seat people and keep an eye on the door.  Use the extra bathroom in the restaurant, she told me.  I shook my head.  Then go upstairs, to the office, says she.  I’d prefer not to, I replied.  Why don’t you just go home and come back?  she exclaimed, exasperated.  In 30 to 45 minutes?  I sweetly, innocently asked.  Go home.  Just go home.  Lucy, I told the toilet, I’m hooooooome!!  Ah, Maureen Dowd’s book Bushworld and porcelain… maybe its more of a climactic moment than the subject of this post would lead one to believe.

Gross, right?  Everyone knows how much I talk about this kind of thing.  I usually tell my roommates and everyone else in the apartment before I go in, and come out with long term memories and stories that I constantly relate to everyone in my inner circle (get your mind out of the gutter).  I actually ask everyone in the house whether or not me going in is alright, because I don’t want to feel comfortable and safe while I’m in there.  Only my sister interrupts me, and nothing, nothing, pisses me off more.  But that is her right, as my sister.  If any of the rest of you try talking to me, or (shuddering), wiggle the doorknob, and… I’ll kill you.  Breaching this subject with my general manager is like the “Getting To Know You” time in our relationship.

When I was in high school I went on several road trips with my best friend and his dad, Ray & Ray… while down in Key West on once such wild ride, we were staying in small bed and breakfast where the bedroom and the bathroom were not separated by a door, but rather a curtain.  Older Ray, or Bull as he is known, went out to the living room of the house and gathered ten or fifteen people who were mulling around, and brought them into the bedroom, quietly.  Then on his direction they all came through the curtain into the bathroom while I was “concentrating” and sang “Happy Birthday” to me.  I was so traumatized I couldn’t go again for weeks, became horribly backed up, and had to start talking to a therapist.  The therapist name was the New York Times, and we have a very therapeutic & healthy relationship now.

Alright, you say, I’ve heard enough of this crapping crap, and I want to know more about restaurant week.  Well, I’ll tell you.  Yesterday at table 49 in Turner Fisheries I had a celebrity.  He is a big star in soap operas.  Jerry Douglas.  They tell me he is the patriarch of the Young and the Restless.  I am street attorney to the young and the restless.  Mr. Douglas has also appeared on TV in shows as disperate as THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO, THE BIONIC WOMAN, and BONANZA.   Mr. Douglas came into the restaurant having already eaten, so I got him a cup of tea (he wanted decaf British Tea Time) with honey & Sweet Thing (a sweet & low variation.)  The woman he was entertaining had a cobb salad (bib lettuce, egg crumblings, crab, shrimp & smoked salmon) with champaign vinnegraite on the side.  They were very surprised how quickly I brought the food to the table (about 4 minutes after they ordered I arrived with the tea & the salad.)  I was quite amused at how fast the woman inhaled her salad.  Mr. Douglas was struck a flashy image of man, with silver hair and a twinkle in his eye, and I was minxy to be in the presence of such soap celebrity.

Feast your eyes!

K-Billy’s Super Sounds of Stars on 45 Just Keeps on Trucking… All Restaurant Week Long… tune in to the 3rdarm Shoutcast Today for new songs and longer mixes!!!

The Reverend & Pink Monkey, The Reverend & the Backstab

Oh, the insanity of life. While at my second shift Monday afternoon, during the pre-opening staff meeting, the Reverend stumbled in shouting my name. “Arthur!” The manager looked over and made eye contact. “Who me? No, Arthurs over there.” The Reverend approached where I sat, in front of the rest of my coworkers, and asked for his twenty dollars. A twenty bill that was owed to him, by me in fact. I had forgotten that two weeks ago I went on a rant about everytime the Reverend comes in selling his beanie babies for charity and shows the staff his pink monkey how I wanted to buy it. Over the weekend, when I wasn’t working, someone actually told the Reverend to leave the pink monkey, and every day since then he’s been in looking for me. Looking for his money.

The pink monkey is mine. Thats the good news. The bad news is to make the money I stayed for two hours off the clock. That wasn’t the only reason I stayed at work on a double shift (13 hours or so) off the clock. The other reason was that my Monday night stalker came into the restaurant and sat at the raw bar, to talk to me while I worked. He came in last week too and did the same thing. And the week before, with his sister. Thats when I got his “number” because his sister gave it to me, and then last week he came in and gave it to me himself. Talked my ear off! You can actually still see the bite marks. And because I am so new at the job and just trying to be nice to people (old innocent me, always relying on the kindness of strangers) last week I gave him my number. Now he’s all upset and wants to hang out, or at least hang out at the restaurant while I am working and talk my ear off again. I did my best under pressure to brush him off, and told the staff of the predicament.

One of the bartenders, however, has a sick, Midwestern type of humor (he doesn’t know me too well, either). This bartender tried to get me cut right when the stalker came in, so that I would have to walk out in front of the stalker and therefore be confronted by him to “hang out.” Well, I blitzed the management and told them the predicament. They let me stay working, if I punched out, and supplied beer to help me through. That was the plan and I stuck to it; that bartender learned just how resourceful street attorneys can be.

Now I realize I just have to stiffen up my backbone and tell this guy to get lost. Make up whatever floats to my brain first and let him have it. Be firm. Eliot made me feel better by reminding me that I am only playing good game theory: give the positivity first, but if met with negativity, take back.

Calm Before the Perfect Storm

Converging factors have created a wave in my life, a tidal beast powered by the full moon and the late August sun gravitational fields.  The ‘main man’ shucker (who was recently hospitalized for shucking his hand) will be going on a canoe trip this week.  Filling in his empty shifts will be Yours-Truly-in-Many-Shucking-Gloves (thats my Native American name).  Also, I am stepping out from behind the trainee curtain to assume the sole responsibility of being host to the East Coast Grill on three nights this week.  Add to that the massive trans-New England tourist current brought about by Restaurant Week, and I’ll be working 40 hours at my day job alone.  This will be the most hour/labor intensive week of my life, the whole twenty two years of it.

But worry not, for I have been training hard..  My regimen has included a full dinner of meat for the past 3 nights.  Friday I had a full three quarter inch slice of prime rib.  Saturday I had a rack of Texas-style BBQ ribs, and a small slice of brisket.  This afternoon I had a steak super burrito.  My intestines are meatier than John Waynes were when they found him dead with four pounds of undigested meat in his intestines, which is just as they should be to buoy me and to withstand the torrential vibrations of swimming through the perfect storm.  George Clooney didn’t quite make it, but looks can’t help ya when its only you in the middle of the ocean, and the waves start hitting.  Thats when guts factor in, heavily.  Please don’t tell any sharks how much pork and beef I’ve consumed thats lying undigested in the bowels of my intestines.

To further address those who have been commenting on the Hampton Beach story (scandal-mongers & sandal-mongers), I will quote a line from Steely Dan’s hit, “Reelin’ in the Years” which I performed at karaoke night (7 nights a week) at Stacey Jane’s:  “You wouldn’t even know a diamond if you held it in your hands… the things you think are precious I can’t understand.”  Last weekend was a blast, and if the pictures show me and my adult friends grilling in the rain, thats because we grilled in the rain!  If the pictures show Rick and his friend from childhood Diane sharing a bed, thats because they had to share a bed because I fell asleep in the other bed and refused to be moved!  I don’t understand why anyone found the pictures & story of a us having fun to be offensive.  It was a lot like the Big Chill without the dramatic suicide.  Fantastic music on Coco’s Ipod, great food thanks to the efforts of Rick at the grill, the beach…

Speaking of the Big Chill, I watched it for the first time in my twenty two years on Friday night at my aunt’s house, on cable on demand for free.  It is the best movie I have seen all summer, and is now in my top ten list of best movies ever.  Jeff Goldblum is a trip as a People magazine “journalist”… but the whole cast just gels and the music is fabulous and the story is sincere, focused yet subtle in areas: wonderful.  I heard that the suicidee that sparks the films plot is played by Kevin Costner (the characters name is Alex).  In the beginning of the movie the shots of the leg with the sock being pulled up and the trousers coming down, and the tuxedo shirt being buttoned are all that was left of Costner in the Big Chill after the cutting room.  Evidently he was supposed to be featured in flashbacks in the original screenplay.  It was definitely a good idea to cut him out completely, because that character can then only be imagined in the audience’ mind, and using imagination is good… even in movies.  If it had been up to me I’d have cut Kevin Costner out of Waterworld, too, except that no one else on the planet has evolved gills to breathe underwater, which would have made it that much more difficult to follow the map on the child to Neo-Pangea… okay, fish-Costner was crucial.

I just purchased the soundtrack from the Fabulous Baker Brothers and the album “The Sign” by Ace of Base on cassette tape, for less than two dollars, and I feel like the gub’ment when they got that great deal on Louisiana.   Those tapes are an important part of my readiness regimen for this week of work.  Its about 5PM now and I have a few more scraps of pigs feet to nibble on before I throw my mind and body into motion… but I will leave my space here with a final thought:

While researching the Scrittori Manuscript (written during blackout intoxication by my roommate) and its background (which because of the blackout he cannot recall), I stumbled across a message board discussing an individuals’ intent to convert to Judaism.  The thread goes:  “I don’t know if I will convert, but there’s a decent probability.”  “It’s not very easy to convert they’re not really looking for new members”  “I AM OPTIMUS PRIME, LEADER OF THE AUTOBOTS AND DEFENDER OF AUTOBOT CITY.. WE AS THE TRANSFORMERS MUST DEFEND AUTOBOT CITY FROM THE REBEL PESKY FORCES OF THE DECEPTICONS, SOON IN TIME YOU WILL SEE ME AT A LOSS, BUT THAT SADLY IS ONLY BECAUSE IM JEWISH.”

Personally, I am an animist.  My spirit animal (a lemur riding a tiger through bear-infested woods) needs lots of love this week.

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