Sunday, November 23, 2008

Story Zero

Writing is a necessary evil. When people are simply too lazy or too ineffectual to do something to improve their lives, they whine about it. Sometimes they whine about it in writing. Writing serves the dual purpose of--

  1. bleeding off their restlessness and resentment so they don't kill themselves, rape people or otherwise become inconvenient to the rest of us;
  2. contributing to art and culture (useless pursuits that keep the rich in their belief that they are intrinsically better people) when the writer hits occasional literary gold.

This is story zero. This is everyone's story.

This pretty much keeps the masses pacified and intellectuals entertained, so no one gets any funny ideas about upsetting the status quo, which frankly, needs a little tipping over.

Speaking as a cynic, that's the first story. Speaking as a writer, thinking like this makes me sick to my stomach. Time for my medication.

The Ninth (Or Zeroth) Original Story

Click here to get to the other eight. The gist of that article being, that every Hollywood movie on God's green earth is based off of at least one of them. I submit there is a ninth story, or story meme, that informs the rest of them. I'm loosely calling it the Fall.

In every story is a status quo and then something happens to upset it. Sometimes that something is a villain, like Brainiac trying yet again to put Metropolis in a bottle: Superman must fight him to prevent Metropolitans  from being very inconvenienced by the villain's shrink ray. Sometimes it's a natural disaster-- think Titanic. Regardless of what that something is, the characters have to fight it to get their status quo-- or a semblance of it-- back. They've fallen out of safety, contentment, out of Paradise and they have to struggle to return to it.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

yet another phantom annoyance

Clinton. Shakespeare. Idol. Holiday. Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And then there's Shatner. 

Shatner! The Great Ham himself. Of all people.

It vaguely bothers me that some of my idols are named "Bill." It shouldn't. 

But it still does.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

"Joc" Only

Watching the Philippine Senate skewer former Agriculture Undersecretary Joc Joc Bolante -- seemingly on the run since '05, methinks-- over a highly overpriced fertilizer fund that smells like it was used instead as a cash cow. 

I don't want to be him right now. And I really feel for his family. 

The characters asking all the pointed questions in the senate aren't all squeaky clean. But the facts seem to bear out that there was a cash cow, and Joc Joc here was behind it. He's talking in a level voice (which is good for him). But this really stinks to high heaven.


---------------------------

I miss you, Tin. 

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Obama's Won-- Now What?

For Americans, this should be easy. 

Stay on his a$$ and protest like crazy if he starts making the same Dubya mistakes even the moderate Republicans couldn't stand. They've just proven that (at least in US elections) power does reside in the people. Ergo despite the manipulations of Karl Rove's intellectual descendants the people doth indeed give, the people canst indeed take away.

Thank him for carrying your hopes, pansy-crats. But never let him forget this.


For the rest of us, it's another nail-biting wait.

Happily the anti-Americanism is thawing... and non-Americans can now admit that they need help that traditionally came from Uncle Sam. Meanwhile Iran and Israel are already lobbying, throwing their weight around.

Ouch. Wait and see, as always.


Why Are you So Interested, Dex? 

Aside from the Washington-sneezes-whole-world-catches-cold premise, you mean?

Okay. 

The last three years have been characterized by me mostly falling and mostly struggling to get up. It's nice to see something I've wanted that affects people's lives really swing my way, no strings, no catch-22's, no belated "Dyok laaaang! Belaaat!"       

Thursday, November 06, 2008

My Christmas Wishlist Rant

1. That some of you get married without having to be knocked up on some drunken one night stand with what you thought was a stud. 

Really, if the whole point was to not get pregnant, then maybe one should er, not get too ___faced to keep oneself continent. Yeah, I know the value of getting off-- I'll be a pansy and say I've had to do that by myself a lot lately-- but there's a reason why the prudes always advocate keeping oneself away from "occasions of sin."

I know, the dating scene is horrible, what with psycho stalkers (et tu, Brutus?) everywhere, but getting plastered at parties and clubs is exactly like painting a giant "screw me" sign all over you.

2. That some of you can let go of your damned careers long enough to explore meaningful attachments with people around you. 

I hear complaints about how lonely life is blah dee blah blah. Well, boo hoo, you chose it. So please don't get snippy with someone who offers you a respite or an alternative to all that running around chasing deadlines. He's already been inconvenienced by all the pavement he's been chasing for your sake. It's frightening having to change your schedule again to accommodate someone who walks, talks and smells different from you, but he knows that. He's always known that. Why do you think it took so long for him to tell you how you light up his cosmos? 

Yeah, I know, he's not your type. Which brings me to--

3. That we all stop looking at the goddamned superficial. 

 So what if he's too damned nice!? Or that she's too damned plain!? Do any of us seriously want to inflict another a$$hole on ourselves or on other people when the world's already teeming with members of the cynical post-innocent?

Jeez, why am I even asking people this?

4. That we stop expressing our love for each other by bludgeoning the other guy's ego and shattering his will. 

5. That we find it in ourselves to forgive.

6. That we find it in ourselves not to be afraid of the strange, the different, the queer. 

Really, what's the worst that Pablo Banilla (who has a crush on you that's why he viewed your site cutenun (TM)) can do?  

7. That she finds it in herself to really speak to me again.

8. That she finds out how happy she makes me when I catch her in the elevator, and that the knowledge doesn't freak her out.  

9. That we all become filthy stinking rich and die happy.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Maybe they shoulda voted for this guy

link: http://www.zod2008.com/

It's interesting to note that Kryptonian super-criminal General Zod threw his hat into the US presidential election ring sometime ago. According to his website, he even appeared in the most recent presidential debates. 

HIs campaign platform is interesting, though it has a lot to do with people kneeling to him in awed obeisance. 

Still, as excerpted from his website, his platform is as follows:

1. "I do not take orders. I give them." 

2. "Your freedom will be expanded." You will be even more free to give [me] your money and lives...

3.  "Eliminate the Iraq War." ...I suggest you put the money into your own schools and health care, so that I may have intelligent, healthy servants...

4. "Universal health care."  ...I demand your very lives, but I am not such an imbecile as to institutionalize suffering and poverty...

5. "Corporate reform." ...I will break this sickly codependency. It is I who shall be your ruler. I shall empower you with wealth to give me as tribute. A corporation cannot bow to me or give me tribute that comes from the heart.

6. "You will buy U.S. made items." ...[Why buy made in China?] You are sending my wealth and tribute to foreign lands. I will not tolerate this.

There are some legal snags to his campaign, among them the fact that he's from Krypton. But if the other Kryptonian illegal immigrant (Kal El) can stay by virtue of documents forged by his earthly foster parents, then having Zod around shouldn't be much of a problem. At least he's not lying about his ethnicity. It also helps that he can reduce the Immigration and Naturalization Service to a pile of smoldering slag. 

Well it's too bad Obama won. We should all be kneeling to Zod and basking in his munificence.

All hail General Zod!

Thank You John McCain

Through your very very gracious concession speech, you've given me a glimpse of America as it should be, a nation of clear eyed people who can move beyond crushing loss, determined to make their country (and by extension, through example, the world) a better place.      

I'm joining you in wishing your country and your party all the best.

 

Monday, November 03, 2008

Nova Roma, Again. And Sisyphus too.

I never quite considered this until someone on NPR raised the topic. What does an Obama win mean for white supremacist groups in the 'States?  Hackles were already raised regarding an alleged plot--timely stopped-- against the man's life.

What excites and frightens at the same time is how close the man is to actually winning. One doesn't need to be in the 'States to taste the electric tang of change and as-of-yet unrealized potential. It's almost like asking someone out: so many things can skew things and make the whole effort another punchline in yet another existentialist joke.

Think of Sisyphus having to push that overgrown stone up the hill again.  

I'm watching the US elections out of the corner of my eye, devoting a bit of brain power to extrapolating alternate future histories ("What happens if McCain or Obama wins?") from insufficient data. I might as well try to number crunch those futures just to keep my mind occupied. Beyond my jobs what else have I got to do?           

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Quo Vadis, Dex?

Success 

Finally finished that draft I’ve been slaving over on and off the last six or so months. I just hope I won’t wuss out and change it again before I finally have it sent.

Hermit 

If you cannot invest in a spiritual refuge, invest in a physical one. Security and complacency will not necessarily follow, but at least you’ll have one contingency covered.

Zombie: Been There, Done That, Ate Brains

I'm way past that point when you wake up and realize that you've been one for the longest time. You realize that you've walked around with a gaping (figurative) chest cavity and infected everyone else with terminal ennui and existential angst.

The question now is what you do about it, when traditionally, there's no real cure for zombie-ism.

[Insert how much you miss your ex here. No, still no reconciliation in sight, there will never probably be one.  One caveat though: it does get better, even if only in tiny little bits, over time.]

I Saw No Zombies

...but there's always next year. (I've always found them charming in a camp way, you see.) I did see my dead relatives (and those who survived them) when Mom decided to shanghai me on her road trip with Pop to Batangas. Saw granny on my mother's side on the trip back. I must have been on the road for a total of seven or eight hours.

I'll be making a few more road trips as Christmas approaches. Quo vadis, indeed, Dex? I don't know, I've only got the most vague plans. But that's what makes these lifelong road trips fun.