Thursday, August 14, 2014

Transcendent Thoughts

Good Afternoon Ladies & Gentlemen,
First & foremost, a big happy birthday to The Wingman earlier this week. It’s been a big year with everything from his marriage to the passing of his father… his son getting married to still ongoing courtroom custody battles across the state… all kinds of stuff in between, and I feel sorry that I haven’t been there to, I don’t know, share a beer with him to vent it out or anything like that living a thousand miles away… but yeah, he’s a good strong dude & he can pull through… and he’s got his family there to support him. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing him in a few weeks when I go to Utah though. He’s been itching to try my beer ever since he heard about it so, hopefully it’s not disappointing. I’ve missed ya bro… happy birthday!!!
Speaking of legends, I’m sure you’ve all heard by now that comedic icon Robin Williams took his own life a few days ago… and it’s just sad as f**k any way you slice it. For over forty years, the guy was almost ALWAYS on stage. From summer blockbusters to the most meaningless interview, every time that he knew there was a camera around… and from interviews even when they weren’t, he was there just trying to make people smile & keep it light and airy. I’m sure those closest to him know the darker side with the drugs, addiction, depression & all that mess… but it was never a huge thing in the public light, so most are shocked. Whenever I hear about somebody taking their own life, it’s rough for me. Like most of you out there, I’ve known a few people who have taken their life… and it’s always incredibly sad & seemingly selfish at the same time. There’s always the sudden feelings of “Oh my God! How did this happen? I had no idea they felt this way” to “F**k them for taking the easy way out! P**sy!” and reflecting on the good times and trying to search for answers in the bad times… but yeah, it’s just tragic all around. So because that’s the way I am… let’s focus on the good stuff. His comedy was hilarious, relevant, inspiring & just plain ridiculous… his “real” acting was even pretty decent. I mean… sure there was some bad movies over the years, but show me an actor or actress who has not been in a bad movie & I’ll show you a waitress at a diner or parking valet in Hollywood. However, he was also in some great ones… and he always seemed to give it his all. He also had lots of philanthropic work going on… and especially here in San Francisco, he was just one of those living legends walking amongst the commoners from time to time… but at the same time, never really put himself on a pedestal above others. You could go on for days & days about all the complexities of his character (and believe me, you’ll hear plenty of it for the next month or so on TV) but the world is truly a sadder place without Robin Williams. Hopefully you’ve found peace…
Tuesday night, I watched “Transcendence” starring Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy & Paul Bettany… and directed by Wally Pfister, who was the cinematographer for all those great Christopher Nolan movies from the past decade. The story is about a scientist & his wife (Depp & Hall) who are on the forefront of creating artificial intelligence to help solve all of the world’s problems from the environment to the economy to war to hunger to dropped cell phone calls to girls who won’t call back to that stuff that forms in your eyes when you sleep… you get the idea. Well, there’s an ecoterrorist organization that blows up a bunch of labs across the U.S. to stop them from doing so (Why? You know why… religion, fear of technology, they cancelled Firefly, change, blah blah blah) and so the only lab left is theirs… and they have to go into hiding because… you know, cops & FBI are pointless. Well, because the attempt on the scientist’s life left him with radiation poisoning (apparently it was on the bullet) he only has a month to live… and so he downloads himself into the artificial intelligence… the wife is like “Oh my God, you’re alive! I’ll totally hook you up to the internet!” while their friend (Bettany) is a little more “Wait, this might not be a good idea to give THIS access to EVERYTHING!” Well, of course he gets hooked to the web… and they have all the resources they would ever need to do their research… but is it really the scientist in the machine? Or is it the machine playing as the scientist to get what it wants? Now, all I heard about this movie from the few people I know that saw it… is that it was horrible. Now, the pacing… is extremely slow for most parts of the movie. It may not really be… but it certainly does feel that way & that’s what really matters. For all the talk about technology being able to cure everything in mere minutes & flashing screens of everything happening almost instantaneously, there’s a LOT of slow mo, whimsical, you know… shots like a cinematographer is jerking himself off. Aside from that though, the characters are fairly interesting (though the wife is a little too… overly wifey?) and the overlying theme is that technology can be great but it can also be very dangerous if unchecked… and all the moral components of what’s right, wrong, weird, better for all, better for the individual, free will, tactical thought, all that stuff… it was a LOT better than I was led to believe. I wouldn’t say a great movie but definitely a good one. I’d say check it out if you’re into a lot of Philip K. Dick novel concepts about reality vs. perception and all that.
Wednesday night, I had dinner with Bubbles at a place in the Dogpatch area of town called Poquito. It was a nice little tapas & Latin cuisine place… and they had a happy hour, so we were sold. The portions were actually pretty good for a tapas place too & at reasonable rates. Because Bubbles is vegetarian I was a little worried, but the food was good… and they had things like patatas bravas, potato pancakes, corn pancakes, beet salad & Portobello mushroom empanadas that hit the spot. Go check them out if you’re in the area. As for the chit-chat, she’s looking to move to Vancouver… so we’ll see how long that takes. I offered to introduce her to Doug from the Alaska cruise… oh wait, you still haven’t heard about him have you? Well, she declined… for now.
Okay, so Wednesday night, possibly fueled by tapas, I had a weird little dream. The main part that I remember was towards the end where I was basically walking through the desert… with a little rat dog (Pomeranian?) on a leash in one hand… and carrying a gun in the other… behind me is the burning wreckage of a car… and walking in front of me… is Britney Spears in a black leotard kinda thing. Stop! I don’t know why… not even a huge fan of blondes, not even sure if it was her but just a busty blonde. Did I mention that I had a gun & a b**ch on a leash & there was a car on fire? Let’s focus on that! Anyway, we’re having some sort of stupid rom-com conversation straight outta those stupid bounty hunter flicks like “One for the Money” or more like that one with Gerard Butler & Jennifer Aniston “The Bounty Hunter”. Something like she was on the run… and I was trying to find her before the REAL bad guys find her… and because we apparently had a thing, I knew where she’d be… but now I had to walk her back to her car against her will because my car blew up or something… maybe there was a shootout or something beforehand that I don’t remember. Anyway, after a few minutes of that BS and tugging on the little dog to keep up, we come to a town & I holster my weapon.
“Okay, where in town are you parked at? Back at the motel?” “Yeah.” “Okay, hand me your keys to the room & your car. You stay over here (by the fence separating a gas station from a canyon) and I’ll check the place out. If the coast is clear, I’ll grab your things, hop in the car & swing by to pick you up. If not, we’ll improvise. Sound good?” “I’m going to jail…” “No, you’re NOT getting SHOT repeatedly until you die. If you turn state’s evidence or whatever, you’ve at least got a shot. I don’t do this for a living & I found you. I was actually kind of surprised that I found you first, let’s not lose that advantage. Keys please.” She hands me the room key… and as she’s handing me the car keys, she flicks them to her right over the cliff edge. I see the keys fall down… down… down… bouncing off the rocks… look back towards her… and basically give her a shrug & say “Okay… good luck… nice knowing ya…” and start walking away. “Where are you going?” “Ugh… I’m going home. I don’t need to be here. 10% of your bail… not really that huge of a thing. Just thought it’d be nice to help you out AND make a few bucks… but I’m done. My skill set, my anonymity to your pursuers, my kind heart towards your disposition, my willingness to allow you & your f**king dog to continue living after you blew my f**king car up, all that is no longer available. Obviously you've got this all figured out.”
I throw the leash at her and the dog starts barking… so I do the only rational thing & aim my gun at it. “NO!” She jumps at me to stop, I raise the gun up into the air and she jumps and stretches to grab it… but I’m really tall so… you know, breasts bouncing all about, grinding up on my sh*t, obviously she starts falling for me, feeling all up on my pecs, blah blah blah, you’ve seen this kind of movie before. I reach down with one arm & reach around her, lean over her backturned posture as she’s just waiting for my embrace… and then I push her away having pulled the REAL keys out of the back pockets of her leotard. “Thank you!” “What? How did you…” “I’ve been walking behind you through the f**king desert for the past four miles… and you’re wearing a leotard. I also know that your cash & ID are placed against your left thigh but I wasn’t going to go after that too since I also noticed what appeared to be a frayed string. That time of the month?” “How…? DAMN IT!!!” “Look, it happens. Now, just let me know now. The offer still stands if you want to head out of here with me… or you can do this by yourself & I’ll wish you the best of luck.” I never found out her decision since that was about the time my alarm went off. Yeah… that’s right, I had among the world’s most unsexy dreams involving Britney, a black leotard, leashes, a motel & gunplay ever. What does it all mean? Don’t know… don’t care… just thought I’d share.
Anyway, that's it for this entry I guess... next time there'll of course be homebrewing updates & other FUNTASTIC activities as always. Have a great weekend everybody!!!

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