April 8th, 2010

Eye of the Dragon

Song of the Indeterminate Time Period: Fooling Yourself

I play this track a lot, but I don't think I listen to it enough.

It's from the same album as "Man in the Wilderness", posted here a few months back, and in some ways, it can be seen as the "Get Over It" response to the "I'm So Lost and Emo" of that song.

Collapse )

They played this song on KUFX this morning. Greg Kihn and his sidekick du jour had a brief exchange about the closing guitar riff, and how it seemed too cheerful and happy for a song subtitled "The Angry Young Man".

I listen to Kihn for his Old Rocker stories, not for his profound insights.

To me, that swirling guitar fugue encapsulates all the potential, possibility, truth, beauty, and whatever that surrounds the Angry Young Man. It's all the stuff that we miss—that I miss—when we're wrapped up in being the Man in the Wilderness.

Yeah, The Grand Illusion came out when I was 13. I'm just like anyone else: my High School Soundtrack is the Music of My Life.

hope, science, green hills of earth


I have today off, so I decided to go for a walk. My usual walking route, since moving here, has been along Coyote Creek Trail.

It's a nice, warm, sunny day, and we've been getting plenty of rain. The trail was lined with tall stands of tasseled grass on one side, and bright, colorful wildflowers on the other.

Now, Your Obedient Serpent has had allergies all his life. That's four-plus decades, folks.

Usually, though, the cause and effect are subtle, even if the symptoms are anything but. If I get the sniffles or sneezes or random patches of irritated skin, if I get the Sinus Attacks of DOOM, there's usually a delay between exposure and symptom, and there's usually some difficulty trying to pin down the trigger.

Not this time, boy!

As soon as I passed the first patch of grass, I sniffled and coughed.

By the time I realized that this was hitting now now now, I was at a point in the trail loop where turning around would have taken me just as long to get home as plugging on. By this point, I was sniffling, sneezing, coughing, my eyes were watering, and I was even having some trouble breathing.

And as soon as I got out of that chunk of the trail, I instantly cleared up. Oh, I was still a little sniffly, I still had to cough a few times, but the worst of it was gone.

Real allergies don't work like that! Cartoon allergies work like that!

I've had reactions to obvious, visible irritants, like smoke, but to the naked eye, that Allergy Hellstorm was completely invisible. Not even a bit of haze. I've never experience anything like that before—not even yesterday, walking along the exact same part of the trail.

I'd say it was like getting tear gassed, but tear gas doesn't affect me.


Attention. Attention. Attention.

Scramble Pattern Violet Iodine

India Foxtrot Yankee Oscar Uniform
Charlie Alpha November Uniform November
Delta Echo Romeo Sierra Tango
Alpha November Delta Tango Hotel
India Sierra Charlie Oscar Papa
Yankee Alpha November Delta Papa
Alpha Sierra Tango Echo India
Tango Tango Oscar Yankee Oscar
Uniform Romeo Lima India Victor
Echo Juliet Oscar Uniform Romeo
November Alpha Lima X-Ray X-Ray

Foxtrot Romeo Oscar Mike Lima
Juliet Uniform Sierra Echo Romeo
Echo Charlie Lima India Papa
Sierra Echo Golf Romeo Yankee
Papa Hotel X-Ray X-Ray X-Ray

hoard potato, tv, movies

Release the Hoard Potato!!

Last Saturday, quelonzia and I saw the new version of Clash of the Titans. We both enjoyed it: it was fun and exciting, and we both appreciated the nods to Harryhausen's original.

That said, Quel still liked the original more.

Heretic that I am, I prefer the remake.

I've heard a few people ask why they felt a need to remake the original. It's a question that comes up whenever a remake of anything hits the screen, but one questioner asked a much more cogent version: why, of all of Harryhausen's films, would they remake that one?

Answer: Because it's the one that needed it the most.

Please understand: when Clash came out in 1981, I was a 17-year-old Dungeons & Dragons player who'd grown up on Bulfinch's Mythology and Harryhausen's classics. I was the target market for that movie.

I liked it. I enjoyed it a great deal.

But it didn't quite click.

The original Clash of the Titans didn't quite know what it wanted to be. It was Harryhausen's last film, and the only film he made in the post-Star Wars era. Hollywood still hadn't quite figured out the transformation of High Adventure SF/Fantasy from B Movie to Blockbuster. Clash demonstrated that, even when you throw a Star Wars-sized budget, big names like Lawrence Olivier, and a blatant R2-D2 clone at a B movie, it remains a B movie in its heart and soul.*

As I said, Your Teenaged Serpent enjoyed and appreciated the art of the "B" in those bygone days. Broadcast TV was full of them, and I didn't watch Movie Macabre just because of Cassandra Peterson's wardrobe

When I went to see Clash, though, I confess I was hoping for something more—and last weekend, I finally got it.

The remake is the movie I wanted to see when I was 17.

*It wasn't the first movie to demonstrate this, and it was far from the last.