Monday, March 27, 2006

Negative attention is still attention, right?

Half the problems with the internet stem from people who learned this. Also this sentence could be rephrased and still be true if you change "the internet" to "my ex-girlfriends."

Friday, March 24, 2006

Solitary viewings

My job, such as it is, revolves around watching movies. As such, as there are numerous regions and releases of certain titles, and modifactions to each versions that require repeated full length viewings, I have been inudated with watching the same shit over and over again, and it makes me think. I say this after I read this excellent piece on the movie site Collider, to which points out the Syssiphean strugle among my generation's cineastes, all of which I blame on cable.

For past generations, the power and privledge of watching a movie, and watching it repeatedly was something earned. Or that is to say, you had to go to the god damned theater. Or catch it on TV. Like all deviants, cineastes then fetishized these viewings, these brief encounters with the films they loved or affected them so deeply for good or bad reasons (think Spielberg and the car accident in The Greatest Show on Earth). For my generation, were I to speak for them, we grew up with HBO. Showtime. The Movie Channel. Cinemax. And as pre-adolescents, we fetishized the R rated movies we got away with watching. We also had video stores. There is no good reason I should have seen Wildcats once. The fact that I have seen the film over ten times doesn't exactly make me feel good about myself. And yet, we have become slaves to these bad movies. I bought DC Cab and Doctor Detroit. They both... sucked. Yeah, they sucked. So did Moving Violations. Etc. Etc. I have yet to purchase Wildcats, but I think I wouldn't mind watching it again. And, as was noted, I don't know if I'm totally done with these films. In ten or twenty year, I might have to scratch those itches again.

And we (side note: That MTV commercial about the guy who cheated death by watching MTV until it was over. He got grabbed, what, 1991? I loved that ad, and now even MTV2 can't make that claim. What happened to the art of music videoing? I have no idea, I don't watch videos, nor have I had cable in over ten years. Seriously.) are now driven by new release Tuesday. With sales the first week, I find myself buying things that I don't need because it's cheaper. I liked Good Night and Good Luck, it was my third favorite Best Picture nominee, but is it really worth owning? Will I ever throw on the audio commentary just cause? No, and yet it's in the collection (while The Wedding Crashers isn't. Who knows what I'll feel like chucking). And speaking of chucking I will probably grab The Weather Man at some point. I've seen the film over five times, and yet, I will probably grab it.

As such, I was thinking about Eyes Wide Shut, a film I've owned on DVD three times (though currently don't, somewhat in anticipation of the upcoming reissues) and the fact that I've only seen it once. And I was thinking I should just keep it that way. I'm thinking there are more and more films I should just watch once and let them simmer in my memory bank. I'm thinking it's better to do this. Granted, I still get piles of free DVDs, but just the same. I mean, shit, I used to own all the Harry Potter films. Why? I love the Pixar movies. How often do I throw them on? Never (though The incredibles is cold kicking it regardless, as are most of them, it's just). You see my point. In an era were overconsumption is more the rule than the exception, I'm going to make a concentrated effort to let certain memories of films linger.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Looking at the shelf....

42nd Street
Chicken Little
Footlight Parade

For this week. On the one and twos we've got these on the way:
The Black Belly of the Tarantula
The Busby Berkeley Collection
The Children are Watching Us
The Fifth Cord (which got rolled)
Gold Diggers of 1933
Gold Diggers of 1935
The Ten Commandments Triple Dip

On the personal shelf I have:
Alfred Hitchcock Presents Season One (haven't watched any of)
Battlestar Galatica Season One Discs Four and Five
All of Battlestar Galatica 2.0
La Bete Humaine
Election (To version)
The Great Yokai War
A History of Violence
Last Days
The River

And I've got a very horny wife. Like, seriously, pregnant chicks be all up on it.

And that leads to the problem. I have no problem discussing embarassing things if I think there's a story in them, be it great or horrible experiences. The problem is that's so much more appealing when you're single. Married people who talk about their sex life are gross and I don't want to be one of those people. If you've got a story about a one night stand where the girl decided she wanted to lick your toes and get tied up, that's much more appealing than having someone tell you their wife likes to be choked. Not that my wife likes to be choked, mind you. People get freaky, shit happens, and I've done a lot of crazy sex shit both in and out of a relationship. But when it comes to marriage, nobody wants to hear it and that's ultimately for the best. Hell, even long term girlfriends you don't tell you boys what goes down. As a male. I guess women talk this shit up. Fuck you Sex and the City. Fuck you a lot.

I finally hung out with God for the first time in a long time last night. I asked him to make sure to refrain me from getting boring when the kid pops. As superficial as that sounds, it's a concern. I won't turn this place into "Katja just learned to giggle" or "Martin puked on me, but the smile made it all worth it." But it was funny. I'm not normally an emotional guy, nor do I like asking favors, but I turned to God as I walked him to his car, and said "Hey, you know, I don't like asking, or having you play favorites, but could you make sure that my baby's born healthy?" God smiled at/on me and his eyes twinkled.

You see how easy it is for me to gay up my blog? I'm going to have to tell stories about the worst head I ever got here just to even things out.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

This is all Bullshit, isn't it?

I had my first "I'm going to be a daddy" freakout. Big time. I had a friend in from out of state for the weekend, and we went out Friday night. Being 30, being as how I have a kid on the way, well we went out to party. One's mental state best functions when one doesn't think about the infinite possibilties. For instance, I could die at any minute. Earthquake, heart attack, going like my dad, car accident, carjacking and/or theft gone wrong, etc. etc. Though I knew my wife was pregnant, the thought of how that would affect us/me hasn't been much of a priority, I accepted fatherhood like I accepted my cat, as if it was the most natural thing in the world with no thought of how it would change my day to day. But before I went out, Aili and had a brief back and forth over some chicken pesto tortellini. And she implied, though not with all seriousness, that she makes more than me, and if I wanted to I could be the stay at home dad. And I took it as what it was and I have entertained the notion. Seriously, I could do more writing, maybe.

But then I went out. And got drunk. And went to Cheetah's. And got a lap dance(not my thing, but when the friend paid, I couldn't say no). And then a second. And then we went out to the car and did some drugs. Expensive drugs. And the we went back inside. I felt like I was in college again, but I was also too drunk to care, and wasn't driving. And I think I got a little out of control because I knew there was a finite timeline to this sort of activity, even though I don't really like it. And then I got home. At three. And Aili was cool with it. But I was still fucked up. I slept on the couch. By my choice, because it took me so long to calm down.

And then Aili woke me up. By fellating me. And then we had sex, and it was okay, though I was hurting by the time I hit the shower. Yesterday I was totally useless, and miserable physically and spirtually. And it's at these times I think about all the things that could happen and lose my normal peace of mind. Because I realized I am like to have a little less than eight months to do stuff like that before I'm somebody's father. Hell, in five or six years our kid(s) may want to sleep with us at night, how doesn't that change everything? How do I feel about pounding a six pack on Fridays when I know my kid's next to me. Sometimes Aili likes to throw on a porno (I have a "don't ask don't tell" policy about this, I don't mind watching porn, but she has a thing for Jenna Jameson films, and when she's feeling dirty we'll throw one on and we'll see what happens [usually, fucking]) . Do I want pron around my house (New Pron - fine, though)? Do I want my kids to discover fucking the way I did, through my father's Playboys and video tapes?

This is all bullshit, isn't it? I remember having a fight with an ex, where I described a woman on a plane who was freaking out and every little thing. And I felt bad for her, but I thought she was being absolutely ridiculous, and used this as a tool to calm my ex down. There's some shit you have no control over, so you have to let it go. Were I to toot my own horn, I would say that one of the better things about me is my ability to accept that. You have no control over the flight. I have no idea if it'll be a boy or a girl. And I understand some things will need to be planned out, but planning for ten years in the future right now is retarded in that way (not in a 401K way, mind you). So this is all bullshit. But that's where my mind's been.

Monday, March 06, 2006

At the multiplex in my skull: NOW PLAYING

Takashi Miike's ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS (2008):

A man named David Seville is married and his wife is pregnant, but his life is irrevocably changed when his wife gives birth to triplets. These triplets are horribly deformed and resemble Chipmunks more than humans, which when the mother sees her infant children, promptly dies. Struggling to raise them on his own, the kids eventually learn to talk in high pitched voices, and Seville finds a way to turn it around by teaching the boys how to make music. For some reason, these deformed children and their rock stylings sweep the nation. Hilarity ensues.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

The winner? Bad Taste.

Damn. What a fucking birthday present. Forrest Gump, Braveheart, Chicago. I should know better than expecting a reasonably good film to win best picture. Shoddy theses on race relations wins! Yay.

I'm ill. I've been ill for the last couple days. I'm gonna get me some sleep tonight (as I have the last couple of days), though my illness has me sleeping in the TV room. Don't want to get the wife sick and all.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Do you think you could, you know, love me for the rest of your life, if even only a little?

Here I am. Here I am. Two days (25 hours, actually) from turning thirty. I don't know how I feel about this. Scared maybe, hopeful. How old am I? How old is 30 these days? It's been a dramatic week. I spent some time thinking about my dad. What would he be like if he wasn't sick? I mentioned this to a friend and my voice started to tremble. And my thought is if he was normal... I think he'd be a dick. Then again it's hard to know when the sickness took hold, and what his employment record would be like.

I came home Tuesday night after a reasonable day of work, and crashed in front of the sofa to watch The Ice Harvest again, which this time its noir sensibilities seemed stronger than in the theater. Still a great picture. And then Aili came in. She'd been weird lately. In some ways we still have our own autonomous lives. She works long hours, I work long hours. I watch movies and have a couple beers, she makes herself a Manhattan and goes over some of her work and then throws on some music in the bedroom. Sometimes we have sex, sometimes we both come home and collapse into bed, sometimes she's just not in the mood (which I can't suggest I've ever felt the same). I go into work around noon, she goes in around nine, so I generally wake up a beat as she shuffles out, or I get up with her (rarely, if I've beered myself too much, I sleep through her alarm). Weekends I spend a lot of time working on reviews and every night I tend to spend some time writing. We go out together for at least one meal on Sundays (this is not enforced, but has become a habit that I don't think either of us want to break), and occasionally out dancing on Thursdays or Fridays, but it's like fuckingplus, often, maybe because we rarely eat together outside of weekends.

So, she came in my room, the TV room, and starts pacing. She seemed stressed. I asked her if she wanted a smoke, as she's been fighting the quitting for quite some time. She laughed me off. I didn't know why. I can't approximate the conversation, but my first instinct was that I was in trouble. And I said something along the lines of 'Is it over, is this what this is?" and she started to cry. I felt at a loss.
"No, you idiot." She said.
"I'm not an idiot."
"You are about this."
"So the exact opposite?"
"No. Damn it, this isn't how I wanted to start this conversation."
"What's this conversation."
"I need a drink."
"Okay, what do you want?"
"Look, I, uh, love you."
"Are you sure?"
"How's that a response to what I just said?"
"I, uh, I. I don't know, it's not fair of me to say that. But when we entered into this union I didn't even know if I'd ever have sex with you, Aili, so I was taking it slow with the love thing."
"Do you think you could love me?"

And here, dear readers, is the thing I had been keeping from her and you for at least a month (to which the astute reader will surely say AHA! and then shout neener neener neener). I do love my wife. I think I've always been in love with her. I've definitely been crazy about her since we met, and yeah, I did marry her to get closer and maybe to get in her pants. But even though we've led separate lives the best part of my day is often when I wake up next to her. Or the times where I've woken up in the middle of the night and pulled her tighter, and at least once she woke up and softly kissed my hand. The conversations in bed. The laughs we've had during sex (our sex is often funny as we both have no problem saying what we like, and sometimes find ourselves talking about other things while we congress, often at some point near climax revolving around one of us putting our hands into the other's mouth to quiet us down). The times snuggling on the couch watching something I have to review, and her telling me what she's thought (sometimes we disagree, but more often we do, and sometimes I smuggle a fragment of her thoughts into my work). Her accent. The way she smoked a cigarette. The way she sometimes looks at me like I'm in the kind of trouble any man would want to be in. But it's not the carnality, even if I could write stanzas about the softness of her lips and the subtle warmth of her caress. God damnit, it's the fucking intimacy.

She repeated "Do you think you could, you know, love me for the rest of your life, if even only a little?"
"I, Aili, I'm pretty sure I love you. I don't know how you stop that."
"Cause I'm pregnant."
"Are you sure?"
"I saw a doctor today, after taking a pee test."
"When were you going to tell me?"
"When it seemed realer."
"So the last couple?"
"So, a kid."
"Yeah. Fuck."
"Just, just fuck, not fuck fuck, but fuck."
"Yeah, happy thirtieth birthday."
"That was exactly what I was thinking."

If all goes according to Hoyle [(c) Quentin Tarantino] I'll be a father in eight months. I didn't plan this. I didn't plan any of this. In fifth grade I wanted to be an astronaut. Throughout middle school I wanted to be an actor. By high school, a writer/director. Now, I'm a guy in Quality Control with a lawyer for a wife and a receding hairline, a light beer gut, a little athlete's foot, and a kid on the way.

"Aili. You know what?"
"That sounds pretty cool."
She smiled.
"Martin Harrison Houx."
"You're fucking kidding me, he sounds like an 19th century president."
"It's the only name I've ever thought of."
"What if it's a girl?"
"You get to name her if she's a girl. Fair?"
"Katja Houx."
"After your mother? What about a middle name?"
"I haven't thought of it."
"We still have some time."

I stood up and grabbed my wife. Grabbed her. And something was different. I've been in relationships before, but for the first time I get it. The partnership. I'm going to have this woman's back for as long as the wheels stay on. And I know that if I need to lean on her for anything she's going to be there, because I know I would kill a man who'd try to harm her, I would do anything for this woman. And I held her and then we both began ripping at each other's clothes. As a bragging man, I would say that I've made a woman cry while having sex. But as an honest man, I must admit I've never cried during sex before. And there we were, a mess of each other, on the floor of our home. And we were both weeping and giddy. I tear up just thinking about it. I'm going to be a dad. I'm going to have a kid with the woman I love.

"You know, once we have this kid, your immigration papers are as good as gold."
My shoulder still hurts from that one.