Monday, November 23, 2015

Sparklers in the tailpipe

Somebody once told me everyone’s normal till you get to know them. Which is so true. A person who at first seems pretty unremarkable may turn out to be deeply peculiar, for instance an oboist or model railroader. Another time on an occasion I’d like to forget, a guy whose name I can’t remember said “I always get into trouble when I compare my insides with somebody else’s outside.” Because everybody’s life is hard. It’s like a Buck Rogers rocketship in a Republic serial. From a distance it looks like it’s flying, but it’s really just hanging by a thread.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Found wanting

My neighbor is growing his own mangrove swamp, out by the curb. Actually, right now it’s in a clay pot and stands about three centimeters high, but he has a vision of an extensive National Park sized thing, with trained monkeys that bring him icy cold martinis. This man is a genius. He has a goal which, if handled correctly, can remain unattained for the remainder of his life. I’ve wanted a 1972 Buick Riviera for over four decades now. I hope I never get one. I’d be left with two tons of rusting steel and nothing to live for.

Monday, November 2, 2015

I have great ideas like this all the time.

They say Daylight Savings was designed to conserve electricity, but every office, store, and factory in the USA is artificially lit, so that can't be it. It does give you a 25-hour Sunday once a year, which is pleasant. Here's my genius idea; forget the Daylight Savings thing, but make every Sunday an extra hour long. Every week. Then fix it back by deleting the last hour of work every Monday. So at 4:00 p.m. it's suddenly 5:00 – quitting time. Also, I always forget how to reset my wristwatch, but I'd remember if I did it twice a week

Monday, October 26, 2015

Welcome Koji

Somebody just had a baby. Well, a lot of people did, but these are special friends of mine, so I noticed. And a thing occurs to me; right around now we’re being joined by the first cohort of humans with a pretty good chance of living into the 22nd century. Unlike us, they will grow up with no particular expectation of flying belts, which were always a terrible idea because just imagine being hoisted up into the sky by your belt. I have no idea what they will grow up expecting. I have no idea what people hope for anymore.

Monday, October 19, 2015

The long arc

I know a guy who knows a guy who walks out of every movie before the end; he says last acts are always a letdown. That's a pretty good point. The part where they're introducing characters and complications can be engaging and novel, while tying up loose ends is more pedestrian. Or maybe writers are just usually people of an age where they have some experience with beginnings, but for endings they fall back on formula. They should hire extremely old people to finish their stories. Of course, then most movies would end, “Where am I? Where's my lunch?”

Monday, October 5, 2015

Vast. Cool. Unsympathetic.

Even using hypothetical VASIMR rocket technology, which has the distinct disadvantage of not existing, they figure it would take about 150 days to get to Mars. It would be like riding in a Dodge van from Christmas till Memorial Day with nothing to eat but cold Hot Pockets and Tang. I mention this because I was recently on an airplane for several hours and did not like it much. I watched part of a movie about people driving cars, and was surprised to learn that famous actors like Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson are so underpaid they cannot afford sleeves.

Monday, September 28, 2015

One man's trash

Years ago I paid a visit to the Roy Rogers Museum, out on the edge of nothing much else near Victorville, California. Out front there was a gigantic fiberglass model of Trigger (the Smartest Horse in the Movies). Somewhere inside, Trigger was actually stuffed and mounted, while in the lobby were glass cases containing, among other stuff, every wristwatch Roy had ever owned. Here at home I'm surrounded by an exhibit of books I've already read, music I'm done with, cellphones I used to yak into. And seriously, I can't imagine anybody ever wanting to curate a Dave Maleckar Museum.