- southwest airlines flights from BHM to DCA to CLE to BHM, all of which involved layovers at MDW
- little women at middleburg hts regal cinema. both ticketholders suffering from flu, full of middle eastern food
On Tuesdays my wife-to-be and I have a friend (always the same friend) over for dinner and we watch a movie. We eat dinner most every night and often watch movies but the specific footwork of Tuesdays is becoming a ritual.
This Tuesday we watched Twister (1996), which I had avoided for 23 years. The movie seems to occur in a Clinton-era “present” where the worst problem imaginable is not knowing how tornadoes work. Everyone in the movie is white and healthy. The tornado scientists want to put radio transmitters inside a tornado, to learn what the tornado is doing, beyond its obvious agenda of moving objects around irresponsibly.
There is a rival gang of tornado scientists who drive sleek black Dodge minivans. They are said to be “only in it for the money,” as opposed to being in it for the love of tornado science. No one explains how tornado science will eventually lead to personal wealth or at least a wealth of self-determination.
Philip Seymour Hoffman is in this movie and he says all his lines like he is just barely containing deep laughter about the entire premise. Bill Paxton is the lead actor. I would say character but none of the people in the movie have any character traits or background with very few exceptions. His teeth are a vernacular that is no longer spoken but understood. Bill Paxton needs his estranged wife, who is also a tornado scientist, to sign divorce papers. A series of tornadoes interrupt this process and teach them valuable lessons about how to do tornado science.
The central premise of their marriage is that they are both into tornadoes. Helen Hunt’s father was murdered by a tornado. It is suggested that the Bill Paxton character has savant-level or possibly even uncanny capacity for understanding tornadoes. Despite this, he would still like to know more about tornadoes.
The movie is a recursion of the following scenes: “A tornado is nearby” –> “Chasing tornado” –> “almost dying.”
There are only two “places” in the movie: an underlit control center where hassled white collar people eat donuts and reflect on the tornado situation, and outdoors.
The tension in the movie resides in watching computer-generated representations of tornadoes to see whether they will kill the humans.
I'm in the process of resetting my brain after one long project and trying to limber up before tumbling into the next one. I might put some of the lint that gets caught in my brain's lint trap here. Anyway, hope you're well xoxo
as mentioned in a several years stale post i try my best to keep a record of every movie i watch in a theater. i do not know why i feel compelled to do this but i’m doing it, so that’s a kind of default explanation. unless otherwise stated all movies i saw in 2018 were at the janky cobb multiplex in tuscaloosa.
with like >67% fidelity i think i’ve kept every baseball game/movie ticket stub i’ve acquired since high school. while i was pruning my crap garden before moving everything to alabama in two weeks (did we talk about that, quien sabe), i found this folded up post-it note in my second tupperfile file box of random paper-based souvenirs/proof that i live and will have eventually lived. the post-it note says NOSTALGIA IS A PRISON. i can’t remember why i wrote that on the post it note exactly, but i do remember that it used to be on the wall at my old office in NY.
whatever the reason i wrote the note originally was, it worked out that the real reason i did it was to encourage myself to throw a bunch of shit out here today in 2015 C.E. but because i am a maniac i am going to write down some pertinent info so if i ever desperately need to know what went down for me personally from like 2000-2014 i can consume this list as a memory vitamin. but yeah it is time to stop carrying around this cigar box crammed full of pieces of paper when i could just have this one piece of digital paper. also, if it helps us remember, the cigar box has a hubert davis 1990s panini NBA sticker on it.
baseball games etc
“shower curtain covered in blood”
people buzz off it
I said… you left it there
flippancy toward sad old dude. homophobia
rage in car re [redacted family member]
I have considered my work and what manner of story I am able to tell What did I see as eyes witness What did I hear of What did I dream up without meaning to What did I know as lies and keep regardless
Memory is not daguerrotypes You cannot get the past to sit entirely still It will not behave neither do I make any portrait saloon in my mind Fine chairs and brocades for a look of drama and import
My meaning is to capture the wrinkle and clouded eye and stained collar as much as the story And to knife off that which does not serve Leave it for day pigs
My memory does not always obey me even when I prompt him with kicks like a mind were a workshy horse Neither does my knife obey I done my best by my compass I drawn some folk uglier Drawn my favorites more handsome Hair shined more than it were Less tobacco spit crusted on britches Out of manners I have not talked any of outhouses Chamberpots Infants released back into the arms of the lord so soon your heart would burst Who would want such a tale with honest warp Who wants to know what a sadness life is A mind would go soft at the labor of reading Such a vista would fever your brains
none of you are overly waiting by the phone but as in previous years january 1 is a season of wanting to write more, of meaning to write more. you’d think someone who is presently enrolled in a school entirely predicated on the idea of writing if not more at least enough to fill certain vessels would not have to make promises to self/dead media about writing more, but.
i decline to autopsy 2017 like it was a crop of grapes or a superhero movie/licensing opportunity. it was just days, stacked up, just a tree ring without the glory of seeing the whole tree. today has as much to do with yesterday as it does with tomorrow. we have to hunt/butcher/cook our own poignancy and ought to stop looking for it in abstractions and autotexts. even though it sometimes visits those precincts. but (patiently) whatever. i’m not here to have (more) allergic reactions to myself (again)
some notes about underpants: for the past three-plus years, i have been wearing the same 12-15 pairs of duluth trading company underpants. they are as you might imagine a little ragged by now. i ordered a test pair of duluth trading company underpants because they have a commercial that features a little naked fat man and i relate to little naked fat men. this was during a season of my life when i had more (any) disposable income, so the idea of buying a $17 single pair of underpants seemed a permissable extravagance. the first time i wore them was on a one day business trip to boston that happened to be the same day of the manhunt for the marathon bomber. all my appointments were canceled and i just walked around boston for ten hours, looking for open dunkin donuts to get coffee from and pee at, because not much else was open, and there was no way for me to leave boston. i left my hotel early and kind of in one of those rushes that when you stop to consider why you are rushing you realize there is actually no reason for haste but you didn’t actually stop during the rush, you only realized after that there was no reason for you to rush. anyway.
i was in a tizzy so i happened to put my underpants on backwards, and i wore them all day, walking around pretty much the entire time, and i didn’t even notice any discomfort or even like vague backwardness. so i says to myself, these underpants are clearly worth $17 a pair, i ought to invest in more and so i did. from that time, with the sole exception of travel when i forgot to pack underpants and had to buy replacements, i only wore duluth trading company $17 underpants. i bargain-hunted a little and sometimes they were on sale for like $12 a pair if you took advantage of certain discounts but mostly i paid $17 for these underpants. i probably had all told 20ish pairs of them, considering i discarded ones that got ratty and cycled in some new ones in exciting colors (i am quite fond of the kelly green pair and the several merlot pairs).
that is, by my fuzzy math, something like $500 in underpants considering shipping and opportunity costs not withstanding the ecological footprints and truck miles that it took to grow cotton and invent various synthetic fibers and pay the artist for drawing the little naked fat man cartoon. i cannot believe that i spent $500 on underpants over the course of three years but it seems to be the case. if i ever come to you and ask you why i am or have been or will be broke or headed for broke, please remind me about my priorities as i have variously expressed them to you.
ultimately they are fine underpants. i needed to wear underpants every single day, and they were there for me, almost every single day. i have weirdly fond memories for this particular brand of underpants (the naked guy, discussions of the naked guy with interested parties, the story about the boston manhunt day, the weird self-narrativizing as a person who has a mock-occult preference in underwears which somehow produced meaning in my life). i also helped my dear friend paint what was to become my godson’s nursery and got a little smudge of off white paint on the back waistband of one of the blue pairs of the underpants and i’ll be god damned if i haven’t found that particular pair of underpants to contain if not good luck, something akin to spiritual advil that reduces swelling in my sense of self and my own need to control the affairs of the world. i am actively preemptively upset about the day that i don’t have those underpants and i kind of want to make artwork out of them but i feel like i’d be wakeboarding pretty close to jagged rocks of self-regard masquerading as expression, says the guy who is 850 words into a story about his underwear
anyway, i have been lately and pretty much since achieving my majority sort of cloistered inside my own skull and heart and genitals more often than i ought to be, and so it is not any surprise to you or to myself that i have vested the outer upholsteries of said skull etc with disposable sanctitude, which is how we wound up here. in an effort to honor these cloisters by demolishing them, i have decided to in stages decommission my fleet of duluth trading co underpants and replace them with just like normal, republican cloth coat underpants, but not even that sanctimonious, not trying to clothe myself in camels hair and eat locusts (protein source of the future).
also, and this paragraph here is really closer to my small bruised heart than i was prepared to let you go when i started writing this, I read this article about how people are getting rich writing mattress reviews so i jokingly said to myself what if i got rich writing underpants reviews and there is nothing i like so much as taking jokes too far to the point of spiting myself and others and so, here is the first installment of my underpants reviews.
i’m not sure what (more) i need to do to monetize this idea but i think you can probably safely bet your IRA account that i will never come anywhere near doing it. but the journey is the destination, even if you start the journey by explicitly forsaking the idea of reaching anywhere.