Tuesday, May 04, 2021

May Sweeps - Day 458

It's the fourth of May, and lots of people celebrate that now.  I took my nephew to a second-hand store, and they had a whole display of cheap Star Wars items they must have been hoarding over the last several weeks so they could put them all out today.  It was pretty cool to see--and on the monitors of their TVs, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK was playing.

One of the TVs was one of those 4k resolution numbers that used to be everywhere, and the image was upscaled for that, so it looked really strange and shot-on-videoy.

I took my nephew (the three year old) to watch the first couple of minutes (honestly, I could've just sat and watched for two hours and five minutes or so, but I didn't), hoping he'd get excited about it.  He didn't recognize anything, not even Chewbacca.  Sad.

Sit-ups Today: 50
Sit-ups In May: 361

I'm still stumbling through this twin story, and still paying for my fool decision to name the main character Layla.*  I decided that, instead of being nicknamed "Lay," her friends call her "L," after the letter (or it could be "Elle," I guess).  But I have never used it since deciding that, so it's always Layla said this, Layla thought that, Layla didn't know, etc..

Except for today.  I was looking over my writing, to see if I had even managed one hundred words (I hadn't), and discovered that the main character's name had somehow become Lara today.  Whoops.

Push-ups Today: 166
Push-ups In May: 450

In honor of today, I took ten minutes (no more, no less) to grab a couple of figures and take a photo in the backyard with them.  I wanted it to look all jungley, so I picked a rosebush that might look like treebranches (not realizing you could see the wall to the neighbor's yard in the background).  Maybe if I had had more than ten minutes to spare, I could've gotten something really special . . . but I didn't.

I actually took three figures out with me, and tried to perch a Pteranodon in the bush so it looked like it was swooping down where Bossk (the big Bossk) wasn't looking.  But it kept falling down, knocking over the other figures in the process.  So I hung it from a higher one and tried to get a picture with all three in it, but it didn't work.

Words Today: 1038 (though I suppose if I really wanted to be a Star Wars fan, I'd have written 1138 words today)
Words In May: 2455

*Obviously, she's named after the Derek & the Dominos song (which has the greatest instrumental in Rock & Roll history), but also, because that twin girl I used to talk to all the time was named Kayla.  I just thought it would be cute (or irritatingly realistic) if two twin sisters were named Layla and Shayla.  Yeah, I don't know what got into me.

Monday, May 03, 2021

May Sweeps - Day 457

Well, moment of truth, kids.  It's the third of May, getting kind of late, and I haven't written any words today.  BUT, it's the third of May and I haven't recorded my Patreon address for the month yet.  Kind of leaning toward doing that instead.

Ah well.  I ran, did push-ups, and sit-ups today.  And worked a pretty full day too.  I finished editing "Dying Is Easy" today as well.  Not gonna lie, I think it would be okay to record my address and call that good.

Sit-ups Today: 111
Sit-ups In May: 311

I still ended up writing a bit.  During my run, I had two ideas for the same scene in the story--one in which Layla talks to her mother about how her sister isn't the same (and is not believed), and one where she talks to another student whose boyfriend went on the same trip as her now-changed sister to see if he's changed too (and is not believed).

I chose the latter, and then thought, "Well, it's only natural that later in the story, the student--who I named Maysie--approaches Layla and tells her the boyfriend has indeed changed."  So I wrote that scene as well, despite them being a chapter or two separate.  To my surprise, it was plenty of words*, especially since I absolutely wasn't going to write anything tonight.

Push-ups Today: 69
Push-ups In May: 284

And here's one last thing: I tend to stay up EXTREMELY late at least one day a week (or ten days), usually recording or editing or falling down a Wikipedia rabbit hole.  And that's fine--with how much exercise I do, I find myself less tired after fewer hours of sleep--except that I end up paying for it a day or two later.  If I stay up till four on a Tuesday night, on Wednesday or Thursday, I become a bit of a zombie** and end up taking a nap whether I want to or not.

And then, when it came time to put an image on today's post, I did a Google Search for "Romero Zombie," and was surprised to see mostly gross Photoshopped images of George A. Romero as a lumbering zombie, rather than one of the undead from his movies.

Lower down, there they were, but which one would I pick?  Maybe the little girl from NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (that's on the posters), maybe Bub from DAY OF THE DEAD, maybe the Cemetery Zombie from NOTLD that prompts Johnny to say, "They're coming for you . . . look!  There's one of them now!"  Or maybe the zombie nurse from DAWN OF THE DEAD, who always struck me as memorable.

There are a bunch of zombies in that movie, but there are two or three that show up multiple times, and get close-ups for some reason (including both Flyboy and Roger, and the super fat one with no shirt on that does a header into one of the mall's fountains toward the end).  But as soon as I saw the Zombie Hari Krishna, that's the one I chose.  It's just so weird that the filmmakers picked one of them to be among the living dead, and it amused me and my friends, who didn't know what a Hari Krishna even was, every time we watched it.

Words Today: 729
Words In May: 1417

*Not a ton, no--at this point, anything over 999 qualifies as a ton.

**Romero Zombie, not one of these shitty 28 DAYS LATER/Zack Snyder marathon running ones.

Sunday, May 02, 2021

May Sweeps - Day 456

Did I really not write up a blog post for today?  Do I still have to?

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In May: 200

In Houston, where Big lives, there's a discount store chain called 5 Below.  He (and various folks on the internet) talked about it like it was a magical, amazing place, where great bargains--nay, treasures!--could be found.  I went to one in Hemet, California (and bought cheap headphones I never used because they're too tight--except when I'm doing a Skype call), and one in Oceanside, CA (and bought nothing).

But now, they opened one nearby, in the town four up from mine.  It opened on Friday, but I was working, and I thought about going on Saturday, but we were painting (shoot, I should have taken a picture of the deck when we were finished.  Didn't occur to me).  But today, I did manage to get over there.

And they had a lot of empty shelves . . . and a ton of customers milling around.  Seriously, it was like going to the mall on a Saturday in December, with so many people curious about this amazing new store.  My nephew spoke to one of the employees, who described a lot of seemingly-excellent items they had had on the first day that had since sold out.

I left without buying anything (the line was super long anyway), but I dunno if it's going to join the list of weekly destinations I drive to.

Push-ups Today: 165
Push-ups In May: 215

I can't remember accomplishing anything today, except that I took my laptop with me, and went to the park for a few minutes to sit in the shade and write.  It was surprisingly busy for a Sunday afternoon, and I guess every young person in town had the same idea as me.  

Not that I'm a young person.  Or live in the same town as the park.

I'm not really sure what I mean.  Maybe I'll write a bit more later, but probably not.

Words Today: 540
Words In May: 688

Saturday, May 01, 2021

May Sweeps - Day 455

Today is Saturday, and as some kind of Mother's Day thing (I'm guessing, since I wasn't part of the planning), my brother, sister, and brother-in-law cleared, swept, and sanded my mom's back deck today.  Then, they got the paint out to paint/stain the whole deck, and I decided to join them in it as soon as I got some packages shipped.  It was messy and a lot of work, but the group was big enough (as well as the nephews and a neighbor kid who's always hanging around) that it got done fairly quickly.

And the deck looks a lot better than it did three years ago when I painted it for my mom.  Ah well.

Anyhow, as soon as we were done with that, I drove over to the library to get some writing done, but had the option of blogging, typing up yesterday's notebook writing, or writing new stuff, and I chose to type up yesterday's writing.*  And blog a little bit.  My own daily writing didn't/doesn't really matter, and I frankly don't care.

Oh, speaking of not caring: I have to record a Patreon address for the month of May either tonight or tomorrow.  And here's the thing: I got stuck in traffic coming home from the shoot yesterday, and had planned ahead, so I recorded my address then.  It was going to be the usual (how I did on last month's goals, and what goals I'm setting for the next month, as well as any tidbits about upcoming episodes), but I thought I'd start with a fifteen or twenty minute recap of my extra work on this Christmas movie.  So, I started talking.

But at the half hour mark, I realized I wasn't close to done (and I still had twenty minutes left of my drive), so I recorded a new intro to make it a Rish Outcast episode.  And so the Patreon supporters got something special, I went on a fifteen minute tangent (might have been ten minutes, might have felt like seventy) that would only be available to them.  But when I got home, I was still recording, and I hadn't covered everything I'd wanted to talk about.  So, I sat in the parked car for another fifteen minutes to sum up.  All in all, my "Patreon address" ended up being about an hour and twenty/fifteen minutes, all talking about working on this Christmas movie (and I only skimmed over a couple aspects of it--honestly, it could've been a three hour show, if I'd wanted to).

So, that's good, right?  Except now I have no Patreon address, and it's the first of May.

Oh, and bugger me, I didn't manage any more words by the end of the night than I had gotten in that wee stretch between transcribing yesterday's words and the library closing.*  You may ask, "Rish, what did you accomplish then, if you didn't finish recording that story, writing a little while longer, getting your Patreon address recorded, or making up a list of goals for May?  Did you watch Saturday Night Live, then?"

Actually, no.  I didn't turn on the television that I remember.  I can't say what I accomplished (besides my usual exercise regimen), and that's kind of disturbing to me.

Sit-ups Today: 100

Push-ups Today: 50

Words Today: 148

*I had the main character in her Science class, learning about how the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell.  But it had been so long since I was actually in that class, that I wrote it as "the mitochondria is the workhorse of the cell."  Not sure if anyone would've cared, but it makes as much sense as "powerhouse."

**Which was odd, because they did their overloud announcement, and then they flashed the lights . . . and for the first time ever, it didn't matter, because it was still so light outside that turning out the overhead lights on us made little distance.  Ha.

Friday, April 30, 2021

April Sweeps - Day 454

I'm sorry.  I'm just too tired to blog right now.  I looked at the clock, sure it was three or four, but it's only 1:09am.  Not late for me, but I can't stay awake any longer.  I'm sunburned and tired, and I hate to go out for the month on a whimper, but a whimper it must be.  Goodnight.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In April: 3116

I had quite a lot to say about the last two days' worth of extra work.  So much so that I started to record my thoughts for my Patreon address for the month of May, but after reaching the half hour mark, I realized it would be way too long, and it'll have to be its own episode now.  And when I reached the one hour-ten minute mark, I realized it would be a looooooooong episode.  Excited?

Push-ups Today: 165
Push-ups In April: 3325

I made it through two-thirds of Stephen King's new book today and yesterday, but I did take a half hour out of my reading to write in my notebook, just so, if it was a long day again, I wouldn't have to worry about whether I'd written or not.

Words Today: 748 (all in notebook--first time this year)
Words In April: 20,760

Thursday, April 29, 2021

April Sweeps - Day 453

Look, I ain't saying today sucked--it didn't, in fact--but this was a fourteen hour day, easily the longest day I've had since starting this daily writing/exercise/blogging thing.  And I was really tempted to just say "It was a good run, but eff it."

But I forced myself to do 50 push-ups at 1:00am, and fifty sit-ups at 1:20am, and now it's 1:41am, and I'm going to squeeze out fifty words.  And that's all I can do today.  It's gonna have to be good enough.

Sit-ups Today: 50
Sit-ups In April: 3016

Today was the first day of extra/background work I've done in a year.  While I was there, waiting to be used--there was a lot of waiting around, which is typical, but because it was outdoors, it ended up being a lot of standing around, and that ended up being hard on my back (and a lot of other people, who complained about that, or the heat.  Or both).  I had gotten an email from my friend Jeff in Germany, where he talked about not liking cellphones and how he missed the lengthy letters we would write each other back in the day.

So, to entertain myself, and partially to piss off Jeff, I decided to send him a running commentary--all in audio--of what I was doing, seeing, and thinking of.  Honestly, I must've sent him ten different recordings throughout the day (and night), that he said only amounted to thirty minutes or so, but it felt like a lot more than that.

Being an extra is mostly waiting to be used, and if I had a thousand dollars for every time I've gotten on a set and NOT been used, but was just paid to sit and read (or worse, sleep), I'd have a lot more money than I do now.  Or ever will have.*  

That having been said, they really worked us on this shoot, probably since there were supposed to be many more people walking, milling around, and clapping.  They even did that thing first done in FORREST GUMP (it was revolutionary then, and now as old hat as the hero trying to save the bad guy from falling and the bad guy tries one last bit of treachery that leads to their death, or the female good guy being the one to take out the female bad guy, or a female character is horribly unpleasant but we accept her because she looks like Jennifer Aniston or Reese Witherspoon (granted, this one is a little bit newer.  But only a little bit), where they shoot a small group and then move them and shoot that and then move them and shoot that, combining it all digitally later so it looks like there are hundreds of people.

There were twenty-five of us, and a half dozen tuba players, and we got plenty of use, plenty of walking around behind the principal actors.  Several extras had those Apple Watch things (am I dating myself--by calling them things--even further than I did when referring to Reese Witherspoon as attractive?), and compared how many steps (ie miles) they had walked through the day.  The distance was unbelievable.  It was almost enough for me to want to buy one.

Or to want to sit down.

The thing that was most cool about the set was, because it was set in December, there was fake snow and fake Christmas decorations all over.  And on all of the spring tulips, they had put this thick white foam from a machine that looked like soap in person, but on the monitors looked EXACTLY like snow.  The problem was, the foam evaporated or melted or whatever foam does, and they had to keep spraying more on in between set-ups.

We were told the next day that we were not supposed to take any pictures (and apparently somebody did and posted them online, and they were baaaaaaaad little extras), but I had already done so, and told the A.D. (assistant director) that I'd taken photos of the foam.  And he said, "The foam?  What are you, some kind of creepy pervert?"

To which, I said, "Oh, you have NOOOOOOO idea."

It was a long day, with lots of activity, and very little of interest to you (I'm sure).  Suffice it to say, it was a warm April day (and night) but it's a Christmas movie, so we pretended it was winter, and that included wearing thick jackets and long-sleeved shirts, gloves, and scarves.  I got word that one of the Gen Zs actually put on socks!

(here you can see both the foam and them hosing down the street)

I made friends with an old man (well, he told me he was seventy-one, and that's not that old, really, but he looked old), who impressed me with his positive attitude and professionalism.  He and I were the only extras that worked both Thursday and Friday, and at the end of the day, he gave me a Diet Pepsi.**  Afterward, I thought, "You know, maybe I should call my dad, and ask if he'd want to work on one of these projects with me.  It could be something we could do togeth--"  

And only then did I remember that he's been gone nearly five years.  So, so strange.

Just for fun, I fact-checked yesterday's reference to Strom Thurmond speaking at my graduation, and that puts my graduating class either as 1955 or 1956.  Huh.

Push-ups Today: 50
Push-ups In April: 3160

So, one last mention of the story I started to record yesterday: usually when I sit down and perform a story, I add lines to it here and there.  This was no exception, but it was the first time I recorded a story and then thought, "You know, this is way too long.  I ought to go back in and cut out, not only the additions I just made, but about two hundred words beyond that."

See, in "Two Month Retreat" (or whatever the story's called), a young married couple has an argument, then the guy takes a walk alone to cool off.  That's when the story really begins (honestly, it could start right after the argument is done, if I wanted to be a screenwriter about it (there's this old suggestion that you start a scene as late as you can and you get out of a scene as early as you can.  I don't subscribe to that point of view at all, but it probably works great in editing***).  The story's not about the fight, but about the aftermath of the fight.

And the politics of the day really influenced that fight, so it takes up a couple of pages instead of the two or three paragraphs it needed.  Hmmm.

Words Today: 207
Words In April: 20,012

*Unless you want to support me on Patreon at this link.  You could tip me on Paypal, if you like, but I am no longer able to access that money, so maybe I should take the Paypal link down.  I'll explain on Sunday.

**To my horror, I thought it tasted just fine.

***Check out the first cut of any scene in STAR WARS, for example.  The Cantina scene, for example, originally began with Luke going into the bar and then looking around.  You see a bunch of humans (including Han Solo making out with a hot chick), and a few aliens, and an establishing shot of the group, and then cutting back to Luke taking it all in, but the droid alarm goes off and the bartender says (in an English accent) "Hey there, your droids, mate.  We don't serve their kind here."  Luke says, "What?" and the English Wuher says, "Your droids.  They'll have to wait outside.  We don't want them here, ya wanker."  And in the final edit, we start with a barrage of delightful aliens of every shape and color, lose most of Luke gawking, and don't see Han until a second before he introduces himself.  

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

April Sweeps - Day 452

Okay, today (for sure) I need to sit down and record "Two Month Retreat," which is a better title (I think) than "Two Month Itch."

So, I got my COVID test results back, and it looks like I passed.  But now, how will I ever get back all that spit?

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In April: 2966

While driving, I was stopped behind a car, where someone had scrawled "poop" on their back windshield.

Ironically, they did it in toothpaste.

(This is what came up when I did a search for "Irony cartoon")

As of right now, I have zero words written exactly.  A nice round number.

I've spoken (at length) about the challenge of writing teenagers in 2021, when I haven't been one in . . . whoa, eighty-seven years (can that be right?).  

Honestly, I don't even know if kids are allowed to have their cellphones in class or not.  How old does that make me sound, huh?  Because I grew up in a world where teachers were allowed to hit you and we practiced atomic bomb drills in elementary school (not to mention all the rampant speculation as to whether Hawaii or Alaska or Puerto Rico would become state number 49).

(I first posted this in 2020, so I guess it's four years now)

I had to use a word to describe something as dated and uncool, and thirty years ago, I'd have used "hokey" or "lame," but I chose "cheesy" because that was a word I never heard until college (some people even used the hokey and lame term "cheeseball"), and Bossk knows if it's still in use today.  But I just had to go with my gut.

For example, I had a reference to the Weeknd's new song and Tik Tok on the same page, but I still feel a bit like a fraud, like somebody reading will say, "This old f**k has never listened to Save Your Tears--he only knows Blinding Lights, and I'll bet he's never done a Tik Tok video in his life, and has only seen the sexed-up jailbait ones."  

I am a fraud, folks.  I stopped being a teenager around the time the parents of today's teenagers were born.  To put it perspective, when I graduated high school, our guest speaker was Strom Thurmond . . . Junior Senator Strom Thurmond.  

Not only had we not yet landed on the moon . . . the moon had not yet risen.  So, yes, I'm a little bit out of touch.

Push-ups Today: 164
Push-ups In April: 3110

I had passed on working on this particular movie a couple of times before, because they wanted clean-shaven men (and presumably women), and I didn't have any pictures like that to send (I haven't been smooth-faced in I don't know how many years).  But this time, they didn't say anything about it, so I sent in my most recent picture, and when they got back to me, they asked if I would be willing to shave or not.  It would seem that there are no bearded men in the world(s) of this cable network,* but I said I would, and waited until I knew I would be working before I got out the razor.

I saw myself in the mirror three times since the shave, and all three times it was the scene from the Lon Chaney PHANTOM OF THE OPERA.  One of the three times, I thought I saw my Uncle George in the mirror, and one of the times, I could've sworn it was my mother (and not looking a day younger than the last time we hung out).  The third time?  Well, I just muttered, "Who the f**k?"

I'm not saying I hate my face, but if you had a botched boob job by a cosmetic surgeon who went to jail for operating without a license while also tripping on mushrooms . . . how many topless beaches would you attend?  

Anyway, I did get half the story recorded, and the space ran out before I could do more, so I left it there.  It's quite not good, and since it was the story I wrote to please the creepy man on the bridge (it was a dam, actually), I suppose I got off lucky that he let me live.

Or did I?

Words Today: 1080
Words In April: 19,805

*Let's just say it's a channel named after a popular greeting card company.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

April Sweeps - Day 451

I had to drive forty-five minutes today to get a COVID test in order to qualify to work on a television show again (forty-five minutes from home, then longer coming back due to traffic).  It was the first gig I've gotten since January, when I had to bow out of another series because I had gotten sick less than ninety days from the shoot.  I get that they're trying to be hyper vigilant, but it put me on some kind of blacklist, and I got absolutely no work in the four months since then.  

Of course, I almost never did, so I chalk it up as dislike for me from the casting agent (he was pissy to me on the phone once when I worked on "Yellowstone," and I wonder if he didn't make some kind of black mark in my file even then).  Anyway, I got there, and they gave me a plastic container and told me to fill it to the line with spit, and then write my birthdate on it.

Then they handed me an empty Big Gulp container.

I found that to be strange (my previous test was to jab a swab up my nose), but apparently a lot of people are doing it.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In April: 2866

Last night, I decided the next story I would record for my podcast would be a dumb little tale I wrote last year called "Two Year Itch."  

But when I opened the file, it was another one of those stories that was cobbled together from daily writing, and was missing about a third in the middle.  So, I tried to track down those words and fill in the gap.  I only partially succeeded.

It would seem that, whatever I wrote on the 21st of September is gone, and that's the bit (or part of the bit) that I needed.  Very weirdly, though, there is a screen capture of that missing bit (well, some of it, anyway) in my blogpost from that day last year, where I mentioned that I tried to write a conversation about the devil in which neither character use that word, and when I tallied up the word count, it came to 666 words:

Well, it would seem that that image is all that remains of that day's writing.  Which is a bit creepy . . . but a lot more irritating than creepy.

What's frustrating (besides the fact that this kind of shite just keeps happening) is that I have to take time out of what should be my daily writing to try to copy down the above, and then fill in the rest of the gap, just so I have a completed story again (I found a copy from September in my desktop computer's 2020 folder, but it was even less complete than yesterday's version).

I did not get a lot of writing done (about 75-90% of it being rewrites), and I headed over to my cousin's house for the evening, having only managed some.  But some is better than none, and to my credit, when I got home, I wrote a tiny bit more on my twin story . . . but it doesn't matter now, because my computer shut off during the night, and when I restarted it (had to do it three times), there was nothing from yesterday in that file.

It's not a huge deal (except that I can't count the words, since I don't remember how much there was), since the rewrites on "Two Month Itch" were saved (apparently at 2:41am).  It might have been zero words anyway, right?

Push-ups Today: 100 
Push-ups In April: 2946

I was checking to see if I had a file of my D&B story "The Last Friday In December" today, to see if I could start recording it (in preparation for publishing it).  I didn't, but I found several stories in its place, alphabetically, at least.  There was "Last Call" and "Last Contact," which I wrote with Big.  There was "Last Minute Shopper," "Last Night of Freedom," and "Last Lunch At Charburger."  There was an old script called "The Last Resort" and an unfinished story called "The Last Boy On Earth."

Finally, I'm going to leave you with this:

When I first saw this picture of a Mickey Funko Pop Vinyl, my brain was convinced it was a three-eyed Mickey.  It still looks that way, if I squint.

Words Today: 438
Words In April: 18,725

*Although the file also has the title "Two Month Retreat" and "First Fight," both of which work better.

Monday, April 26, 2021

April Sweeps - Day 450

Today was cold and rainy and miserable, with clouds so low in the sky they look (right this moment) like fog around the mountains.  Even so, I wasn't outside in it much, except to pick up my nephew from school, go out to the shed a couple of times, and take the garbage barrels around to the curb.  Now I'm at the library, though, pretty close to closing time, having not had more than a few minutes' peace except for at lunchtime, where I sat down to watch a Marvel toy panel, and started falling asleep almost instantly.

Sit-ups Today: 111
Sit-ups In April: 2766

I was up till four watching the Oscars, though, so I think that's understandable.*

Apparently, it wasn't just me (in complaints about the Oscars, both the format and the many, many, many, many films that nobody has seen): it had its lowest ratings in the history of television.  And while that should make me feel in good company, it's too bad that the quality and the enjoyability had to decrease.  Hey, next year is sure to be better, though, right?

Anthony Hopkins won Best Actor (again), and is now the oldest person (at 83) to win that award.  A lot of folks are angry that a) Hopkins didn't show up to the ceremony, either in Hollywood or one of the satellite broadcasts, and b) that Chadwick Boseman didn't win for his last movie.  In fact, a saw a bunch of folks online calling Hopkins an a-hole for that.**  But hey, Boseman didn't show up either, and I don't hear you grousing about that.

Oh, this is weird.  Within ten minutes of me writing this awful, insensitive joke, Big Anklevich texted me the exact same awfully insensitive joke.  That struck me as particularly odd.

I had the hardest time finding this image (from last year), despite saying I'd use it over and over again.

Push-ups Today: 114 (it slipped my mind to finish the push-ups I was supposed to do.  Guess I need to do more tomorrow)
Push-ups In April: 2846

I didn't get a lot of words written (yeah, yeah), but one of those words was "twinship."  As in, "she felt little in the way of twinship at the moment."  I thought, when writing it, that I had made that word up.  But it turns out to be a real word.

A perfectly cromulent word.

Words Today: 661
Words In April: 18,287

*And then I sat for twenty minutes afterward, blogging about it, mostly because I'd drank caffeine after ten, and that's what it does to me.

**Though you know how the internet is.  It could be five people in the whole country that are saying that, but they're saying it so loudly that you'd think it's a million.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

April Sweeps - Day 449

I don't have much going on today to tell you about. Last night, my cousin and I went out to see THE COURIER (we had tried three times to see it and this was the one that succeeded*) *The first time, two weeks ago, it sold out while we were in line (something that hasn't happened to me in, oh, twenty-something years), and the second time, I forgot about it and he sat at the theater waiting for me, wondering if I had parked someplace else.

I knew tonight would be busy, so I took my laptop out to the car, drove to the park, and typed for a few minutes.  I got almost nothing written, but at least I didn't waste any time surfing the net like I often do at the library--the place I go to write without distractions.

Sit-ups Today: 200
Sit-ups In April: 2655

Somehow, Oscar Night has rolled around again, and even though I have seen none of the films that were nominated (has anyone?), I simply had to watch.  But Sundays are my busiest nights with eBay, and it's the last Sunday of the month (you have to use all your paid-for auctions, or else they go to waste), so I did what I could to get them all done, and "taped" the Oscars.*

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In April: 2732

This was the weirdest Academy Awards I've watched, and didn't feel like the Oscars I grew up watching.  I'm tempted to say that it was mostly because of COVID (with several locations broadcasting at once where the nominees were watching) but . . . no, there was other stuff going on.  For example, instead of in the Kodak theater, or even the little ole Shrine Auditorium, they broadcast the whole thing from the Los Angeles train station (at least I thought I heard that right).  

For further example, instead of having a live orchestra [or even having a recorded orchestra], they had Questlove DJing with all the music, and he'd do the record-scratch thing from the Eighties and then play a song so loudly that you couldn't hear what the announcer was saying.  They went through the awards seemingly at random, giving out Best Picture with almost an hour left, before Actress or Actor.**  They didn't have performances of any of the nominated songs, and practically showed no clips, just for a couple of the awards.  Also, they didn't "play people off," but just let the winners say what they wanted for as long as they wanted (though they did bleep--badly--a couple of the statements that were made).  It was a bunch of people dressed up and sitting at tables, and two or three times I saw them talking amongst themselves, and worse, looking at their phones.

Oh, and a couple of years back, they introduced this super-tedious feature where the presenter for an acting award got to address and comment on the performances of each of the nominees, which brought that (and subsequent) Oscars to a screeching halt.  And THAT element they kept.

At one point, Harrison Ford came out, but he wasn't the same Harrison Ford I know.  He wasn't even the one who played Old Man Han in two of those recent Star Wars Sequels.  People are always making fun of the fact that they're doing one more INDY movie (about to start filming now), and that it should be called "Indiana Jones and the Land of A Thousand Wrinkles," "Indiana Jones and the Rest Home of Peril," or "Indiana Jones and the Cavern of the Enlarged Prostate."  

It always bothers me to hear stuff like that, but wow, seeing him tonight made me think of my dad, being almost unrecognizable, right before he passed.  Of course, we should've had two or three Indy films in the last twenty years (there's no reason those couldn't be as good as the MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE films, the last four of which have been excellent), and I guess next year's will have to be the last.

You're gonna think I'm lying, but this oldster they had play Ancient Indy on the TV series?  He was four years younger than Harrison Ford is now.

Words Today: 648
Words In April: 17,626

Every year, Big Anklevich will call me or text me and ask if I'm watching "The gay man's Super Bowl," and I anticipated it this year, having already typed in a reply for when he asked.  But this year, he didn't.  Huh.

*DVRed is what I guess you would've said a decade ago.  I don't know what you'd say today.  Recorded?  Saved?  Qnosged?

**And the final award went to Anthony Hopkins for THE FATHER, and then he wasn't there, so they just said, "Okay, guess that's it," and cut to Questlove to play a song and say a few words like we were watching some kid's televised bar mitzva.  And that was it.

My Story "Troubled Child" On Journey Into...

So, a year back, Marshal Latham held a story contest on his Journey Into... podcast, and I sent him a story called "Troubled Child."  Now, somehow, it's been presented as one of the winners on his show.  Wish the story were as good as the song, kids.*

So, a married couple discover that their baby daughter is drawn to unhappiness, and seems to draw it into herself, like food or something.

The madman Marshal has once again produced it with full-cast, including a real childe to voice the child in the story.  Check it out HERE.

*By the way, not one of Journey's best.