Penate scoffs at those in the United States who suggest that Central American kids are using the violence merely as an excuse to seek asylum in the United States. “How can you argue with it?” he says. “You see it every day here on TV, kids getting recruited by the gangs, and if they refuse to join they get shot.” Ideally, he says, the ATF would have one or two people in each Northern Triangle country. He hadn’t heard that his agency had passed on the emergency funding. “That money would come in very handy,” he said ruefully. That he is doing his work with so little support symbolizes the U.S. attitude toward its responsibilities in Central America. We turn from the refugees fleeing north, as our firepower heads south.
Hopefully we can put the government in the people’s pocket
To him, the earth’s surface beyond the pavement was simply a moving tableau — a gauzy, unreal backdrop for his high-speed travel. He was spatially crippled. The writer Rebecca Solnit nails this mind-set perfectly in her book “Wanderlust: A History of Walking”: “In a sense the car has become a prosthetic, and though prosthetics are usually for injured or missing limbs, the auto-prosthetic is for a conceptually impaired body or a body impaired by the creation of a world that is no longer human in scale.”
I recently asked Vaclav Havel about his admiration for the American rock star Lou Reed. He replied that it was impossible to overstate the importance of rock music for the Czech resistance during the years of darkness between the Prague Spring and the collapse of communism.
(In general, I feel this way about planning events and my life’s bigger moments… – Le Noneck)
How much planning do you do before you start to shoot a scene?
As much as there are hours in the day, and days in the week. I think about a film almost continuously. I try to visualize it and I try to work out every conceivable variation of ideas which might exist with respect to the various scenes, but I have found that when you finally come down to the day the scene is going to be shot and you arrive on the location with the actors, having had the experience of already seeing some scenes shot, somehow it’s always different. You find out that you have not really explored the scene to its fullest extent. You may have been thinking about it incorrectly, or you may simply not have discovered one of the variations which now in context with everything else that you have shot is simply better than anything you had previously thought of. The reality of the final moment, just before shooting, is so powerful that all previous analysis must yield before the impressions you receive under these circumstances, and unless you use this feedback to your positive advantage, unless you adjust to it, adapt to it and accept the sometimes terrifying weaknesses it can expose, you can never realize the most out of your film.
July 26, 1928 — March 7, 1999
What we see now is a surreal imitation of the suburban industrial parks and commercial spaces of yesteryear. They’re built atop the past’s mistakes, erasing them from our maps and eyes.
And yet, as the humans eat dosas and climb fake mountains and learn acupuncture and buy lap dances, beneath the asphalt and concrete, the microbes eat toxic waste sweetened with molasses, cleaning up our mistakes.
A revolution began here. And this is what’s left over.
Admit it. You aren’t like them. You’re not even close. You may occasionally dress yourself up as one of them, watch the same mindless television shows as they do, maybe even eat the same fast food sometimes. But it seems that the more you try to fit in, the more you feel like an outsider, watching the “normal people” as they go about their automatic existences. For every time you say club passwords like “Have a nice day” and “Weather’s awful today, eh?”, you yearn inside to say forbidden things like “Tell me something that makes you cry” or “What do you think deja vu is for?”. Face it, you even want to talk to that girl in the elevator. But what if that girl in the elevator (and the balding man who walks past your cubicle at work) are thinking the same thing? Who knows what you might learn from taking a chance on conversation with a stranger? Everyone carries a piece of the puzzle. Nobody comes into your life by mere coincidence. Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others…
A world without music is also a world without stories.
As the ever rational Ben Franklin supposedly said, “Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.” Several thousand years before Franklin, I’m guessing, some Neolithic fellow probably made the same toast.
Friends, make me an instrument of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
grant me the strength that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are reborn into stars.