June 13th, 2010

Cartoon Chris

Meme, Day 25!

Day 25 - The most hilarious movie you’ve ever seen
Usually it's one or two sequences from movies that step up from really funny to doubled-over-almost-falling-out-of-chair funny; almost no films can sustain that level for more than one sequence in a row. Maybe more than one sequence if they're separated, but again, hard to sustain. This Is Spinal Tap and the other Christopher Guest comedies often come close to constant hilarious, but of course certain moments transcend, like the payoff to "Stonehenge." Other sequences that utterly collapsed me were the bag-of-pot dream sequence in Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle and, to use a TV example, the Invader Zim gag involving Mars, Earth and a soda can. And I've mentioned before that I laughed so hard at Raising Arizona's chase scene that I started to unsettle my stomach.

Add the extra ingredient of "OH DEAR GOD" to a comedy, which I also can apparently handle, and that might make it more hilarious, because I laughed, laughed, laughed at The Aristocrats, the documentary on what's supposed to be the most offensive joke ever. I saw it in a packed theater on what was an emotionally hyped and difficult weekend -- end of August, 2005, you do the math -- and I was GASPING for large parts of it. Alternately roaring with laughter and screaming in a "MY GOD THEY WENT THERE" way.

Day 25 - A show you plan on watching (old or new)
Band of Brothers and Deadwood, both of which I can borrow from my Dad. I will also try new-school Doctor Who and probably eventually Torchwood, considering how surrounded I am by Whovians who like talking about those shows.
Good Omens

THAT'S what the noise is like...

A week ago, the word "vuvuzela" had never reached my eyes or ears. Now it has, and its noise, it's definitely reached my ears. (Many others' ears, too, which is why World Cup officials are wondering whether they should ban the horn.) The drone's been compared to mutant bees, but listening this morning, with the Serbia-Ghana World Cup game on my TV, I've remembered something else:

Cicada Swarm '87! When I was a junior high student in Northern Virginia in 1987, I experienced a mass unexplained sponge migration a 17-year cicada revival, apparently of this species. Millions -- billions? -- of the largish flying insects emerged from the ground and, for many indelible days, made NOISE. Constant, unearthly noise. They covered many tree branches (in which they deposited their eggs), they hopped all over the place, they buzzed, and eventually they died. Presumably at some point later their newborns then dropped from branches (many of which dried out and died) and burrowed, but that's not the noisy part. The cicadas attract mates by buzzing their wings. Really buzzing. Incessantly buzzing. So for many days. I and the rest of Northern Virginia were treated to the sound of impending cicada sex. This noise remains one of the most surreal things I've yet experienced. It was like a swarm of locusts that didn't eat the crops -- they were here in swarms, then they were gone. The ensuing silence was deafening in its own way.

There were more of the 17-year cicadas in Northern Virginia in 2004, though not nearly as overwhelming a swarm (development probably dug up or completely buried many broods; development in that area has been huge in that time span). I wasn't in the region during that revival (my spring 2004 trip didn't coincide), but I was getting once again to listen to Don Geronimo and Mike O'Meara, the D.C.-area DJs I'd listened to in the 80s and 90s and who by then had their show syndicated to, among other places, my current home of Portland. That year, one of their interns brought a tape onto their show. The intern, back in 1987 when he was a budding student of radio, had gone outside and recorded that buzzing noise; he knew he'd want to keep it. So in 2004, I and other Don and Mike listeners got to hear that noise again.

Not dissimilar to the vuvuzela drone, at least to my mind. But apparently the vuvuzela drone is EVEN LOUDER. Ear plugs, people! Maybe you could plug them with cicadas OK, that's a terrible thought.
NCC-1701 Regula

Walking, thinking

Another day of getting outside without getting a sunburn (I should keep this up), this time a bus-and-walking trip to a neighborhood I've visited only a couple of times before, Montavilla on the east side of Mt. Tabor. To give another marker of the neighborhood, it's the home of the Academy Theater, one of the movie theaters I've haven't attended yet. Fairly easy to get to, thanks to the #15 bus going through it.

I looked and thought. The thoughts will stay private for now. Most of my thoughts do, in fact.

This is a marker in time. Marking another day I got out, gave my legs a good workout, treated myself to a sweet tea (McDonald's, so not a true sweet tea, but you can't always get what you want), looked at a part of Portland I wanted to see, said "hi" to a few people of that part of Portland, saw what was cute and not-so-cute, saw potential places to eat...just being. There. The day is marked.

Hey, other than that my big accomplishment today was two loads of laundry. I wasn't going to write about that. Except for that sentence there.