Sunday, May 18, 2014

Ball Refill... Plus a Pair of Summertime Blockbusters

Many moons ago I mocked up my own line of novelty items (see Porn Flakes and Crabs Macaroni & Dickcheese) and just the other day, in our fine era of 2014 anno Domini, I found this ad in the back of Rolling Stone magazine. An actual product that they sell. To refill your balls with.

So I went to see Godzilla today. One of the trailers was for The Expendables III. A savvy marketing agency should have interspersed subliminal images of Ball Refill between its countless explosions and tableaus of shameless testicular pandering.

You can find Ball Refill and other Vigor Labs snake oil1 supplements in aisle nine next to its girly counterpart, Egg Replacer.

Anyway, Godzilla was the best big budget version created to date, but if you're going to spend $160 million dollars on a film, work a little more into the budget for the writing, acting, and directing. More show me, less tell me. I don't care if it's PG-13; encourage the kids to think critically, to fill in the blanks for themselves. Why not try to impress erudite people with your preposterously implausible storyline? Why not make it harder to tear to pieces?

The only person that did any acting was Bryan Cranston (beloved portrayer of the most diabolical antihero in television history) and they killed him off one-quarter of the way into the movie. Also, ditch the sentimentalismespecially when you haven't given us a reason to care about the characters who do surviveand focus on the monsters. Stop taking yourself too seriously and make it campy if it'll get a laugh. (I did very much enjoy the first time they showed the MUTO monster snacking on a nuclear submarine missile, and later the PSA warning people to stay out of the MUTO's electromagnetic pulse emission, which they called a "Sphere of Influence").

The cinematography kicked ass, of course. And I kind of want to see it again (FFing through the painfully shitty parts).

No further commentary on The Expendables. But you can bet every ball in that film is fully loaded.

1 Pun intended.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

This Lovely Weather Has Brought On My Ruin...

I wish I could take credit for that blog post title, and especially for the poem that follows it, written by Turkish poet Orhan Veli Kanik (c. 1945). In fact it is one of the few pieces of literature I've committed to memory.

This lovely weather has brought on my ruin.
One fine day like this I quit
my job at the Pious Foundations Agency.
It was in such weather I got used to smoking
And on a day like this I fell in love.
It was on such a day that I forgot
to take home bread and salt.
Time and again on days like these
my verse-making disease has recurred.
This lovely weather has brought on my ruin.

Every spring, I gratefully share Mr. Kanik's moment of weakness, which is why I am now forgiving of winter.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

My Dog Is An Intergalactic Bounty Huntress...

Springtime 1987. I had survived 6th grade and the summer lie ahead with no homework and no reasonable bedtime. I saved money mowing lawns and bought the original Nintendo console for $150 at Target. (Interestingly, 20 years later, I bought a Wii… for $150 at Target.) No video game indelibly marked my soul like the original Metroid game. And thankfully Mr. Shigeru Miyamoto and crew continued to indulge me with their collective genius for years to come as the franchise grew.
I loved everything about Metroid: its premise, its fluid game mechanics, its inventiveness, its music (especially the music), and the fact that in 1987 thousands of 12-year old boys like me were shocked to learn your hero of the story is in fact a heroine—long before Chun-Li and Lara Croft. But you don’t even know this until you beat the game and she shakes off her Varia cybernetic armor and waves at you, wearing a bikini. Her name was Samus Aran and my dog is also named Samus and she is two (years old).
Note war paint on snout (lily pollen).
The appropriateness of Samus’s namesake was coincidental because I didn’t realize how athletic she is until I took her to the dog park. Only one dog is faster: Pepper. But Pepper isn’t nearly the specimen that Samus is. She’s built like an Olympic gymnast. Plus, I’ve never seen Pepper float through my bedroom by bounding from floor to bed to window-chair without making a thump, like she’s wearing the High Jump Boots. There’s speed, and then there’s agility. Samus has both. 

She's so fast, that she has speed flaps, as pictured here:

She’s a supra-athlete: like an NFL wide receiver/Greco-Roman wrestler/figure skater who’s as flexible as a yoga instructor—especially when she does downward dog.
(Or upward dog.)

...Then the other night she was sleeping on my sleeping bag like this:
And the image bore an uncanny resemblance to Samus (the intergalactic bounty huntress) whilst on a paused video screen, flashing past bad guys in mid-Screw Attack. See?

She’s also a swimsuit model. Minus the swimsuit.

She likes carrots.