Six Degrees of Desperation

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Soap operas were called such because originally sponsorships were soap companies.
An opera based on a book by Dostoyevsky, written by Sergei Prokofiev is called ” The Gambler
The Gambler(1978) is the fifth studio album by Kenny Rogers.
May ‘78 – The Grateful Dead play at the Uptown Theater in Chicago.
May Day (May 1st) commemorates the Haymarket Riot in Chicago.
Coincidentally, although some would say that it’s no coincidence, May 1st is the day Adam Weishaupt created the Bavarian Illuminati.
THE ILLUMINATI MAKES SOAP!!!!!

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COLLECTIVE INSECURITIES: Anti-social Applications

Intelligent Discourse in The Age of “Information”

or  It Was Like That When I Found It

 

As a member of generation Y, the last to grow up in a world not predominately obsessed with numbers of followers, ironic bandwagoning and ghostly pictures of Applebees entrees with just the right filter, but still able to identify with the digital world, I find myself having a hard time navigating social media, habitually alternating between bursts of brilliant free association as I enchant comment readers into veritable states of euphoric ecstasy ebbing and flowing with wondrous witticisms, and falling into fits of rage akin to Christian Bale demoralizing an intern as he portrays Yosemite Sam at the Battle of the Bugs U.S.S.Hare, or at the very least moments of anger that make me ashamed to be literate.  Although that is not any sort of pre-requisite on any “social media” outlets I frequent, but I digress.

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“How you digressin’?”

I find myself desiring more of a contemporary in my, contemporaries.  A companion of my opinions.  The company of contemplating curiousos with ideas I could opine as my own.  A cornucopia of comrades?  A curtain call to the crime of constant alliteration?  But maybe my follies have a tendency to run away with not only cheap literary devices but with my own supposed solution? Not that I have any clue as to what that means, but I assure you with one swipe of the Instweetychatter and some 12 year old guru will explain it and have you calling Grandma on AOL Email in no time.

Human desire tends to be insatiable.  We become so anxious for pleasure that we can never get enough of it.  As a result, we overstimulate or sensory organs until they become desensitized, so if the pleasure is to continue, we must have stronger and stronger stimulants.[1] Our bodies become weak from the constant strain, yet never satisfied the brain continues beeping and booping.  This brain, in it’s pursuit of happiness, and generally being much more concerned about the future as opposed to the present, conceives happiness as a guarantee of an indefinitely long “future of pleasures”.  However human consciousness is aware of the bodies finite nature, so in order to be in a state of “happy”, it must cram eternal paradise into the span of years, months, even news cycles.  This indiscriminate thirst for simple stimulation, as opposed to enjoying something of substance, has lead the wagon towards a need for the new, to be first, to be different, to be the same but on your letterhead on your page,  all to the detriment of content and quality.   As is evidenced in this post, I square dance that line consistently, wanting to entertain myself, but not wanting to demoralize or devalue the youth, yet feeling as if the insights I’ve gained through the trials and tribulations of those before me, the benefits and pitfalls of my personal history, the damned proper use of the Oxford Comma in 2017, and, I have no idea,.

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“Comma on!”

This is why modern civilization is in almost every respect a vicious cylce.  It’s insatiable hunger is caused because it’s way of life condemns it to perpetual frustration. The root of this frustration is that we live for the future, but the future is an abstraction, a rational inference based on experience that only exists for the brain.  In reality tomorrow never comes, by then it’s today.  The future cannot become a part of experienced reality until it is present.  We are aware of the abstract nature of the future-it cannot be eaten, smelled, felt, seen, heard, or otherwise enjoyed biologically. Therefore to pursue the future is to pursue a constantly disappearing phantom, and the faster you chase, the quicker it becomes. [2]

Thus this “brainy” economy designed to instill happiness is a fantastic viscous circle which must either manufacture more and more pleasures or collapse-providing a constant titillation of the ears, eyes, and nerve ends with incessant streams of almost inescapable noise and visual distractions.

– ALAN WATTS, The Wisdom of Insecurity

For once I can rest knowing someone else put it best. Or at least first.

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“I get it. Reference humor.”

 

[1][2] excerpts from Alan Watts’ essay The Wisdom of the Human Body

Photos used off Pinterest.

 

CHEMICAL ROMANTIC

This is a poem I wrote a few days before seeking treatment for a decade long and devastating opiate addiction in March of 2007. I plan to edit it and attempt to publish it, but not being poetic, writing much then, or having studied poetic meter or lyricism, I think it’s pretty good. And it’s my blog, right?  Sure it is Jon, sure it is.

I suffer numbly, feeling is my only opponent
carelessly I  waste my precious time
loosing each treasured moment
awaiting some guidance, an infectious sign,
a hint of how to have success in my life
Chemically, I’m frozen, a slave of some new kind
Actions are guided through no thought of mine
The mind wanders aimless, my hope’s hitched a ride
Yet my dreams seem to linger with nowhere to hide
They haunt me like lovers who’ve been pushed aside
Leaving their memories right by my side
Gripping reality of dreams and love lost
Regret is exposed, regret is my cost
A thousand days possess but one lonesome thought
As though they just occurred now, although they have not
My lose was deserved and it’s all that I’ve got
Reliving the past makes the future unreal
Yet facing the present has become such an ordeal
Watching the clock fly by like a bird
I beg it to stop – but it seems I’m unheard
Suppose it can see me, as I watch full of fear
If it finally gave up would my head become clear
Free from the stress of each minute. Each day. Each year
Could my mind still go forward if the minutes did not?
Would anyone care if I got it to stop?
Or would the world simply stare at the clock?
Does pain still exist when the minutes do not?
What then shall I waste when the time has all gone-
Would my worry subside – will my joy be prolonged?

Puns: Or How They Learned To Stop Loving Wordplay and I Bombed

Puns on Pop Culture

Of my own design……

Bill and Ted’s Egg Salad Add Vinegar

Riddle Richard

Rum kind of wonderful

Rum and Bass

Riddler on the Roof; Riddle Ceaser’s, Chicken Riddle; Riddle Orphan Annie

Metaphor Roosevelt; Metaphor Rigby; Zen in Rome; Odd Stewart; Oddfather; Odd Taylor; Matthew Odderick; Oddney Dangerfield

The Color Verbal; Verbal Tea; Yertle the Verbal; The Verbal People Eater; Teenage Mutant Ninja Verbals

Pun D.M.C.; Cannonball Pun

Kevin Bacon likes his eggs six ways.

Turn of Phrase

An object at rest cannot be stopped

The old man the boat.

This is the pun fart.

It’s not that life is too short, it’s that death is too long.

Is “tired old cliche” one?

Misunderstood Song Lyrics

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The girl with colitis goes by

There’s a bathroom on the right. Did I just hear you right? Excuse me while I kiss this guy.

THE EARTH BELOW: A Short Film

 

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This is the website for a short film (link) I worked on with Moth to Flame Films (page  website), a collective of filmmakers in Austin Texas  operated by Christine Chen, called  “The Earth Below” starring Elizabeth Trieu and Corey Landis.  Christine Chen also worked as the film’s Producer and Director, bringing Eric Hwang’s script to life. The original story was written by Eric Hwang, Christine Chen and Paul Rivet, with Taylor Camarot working as Director of Photography.  It is a Sci-Fi drama follows a young woman,P19256, in a futuristic world that has eliminated men from its gene pool, while she struggles with her duty to become pregnant for her people. A series of unexpected events leads her to question whether she will remain with the life she knows or escape with a mysterious lost traveler to unlock a future she dreams of.the-earth-below-screenshot

        elizElizabeth Trieu is a native TexAsian, an adventurer and activist of good vibes. She recently debuted in “#Slaughterhouse,” a witty slasher, as her role as Lisa. She has lived in Los Angeles, New York, and Austin, and looks forward to the release of “The Earth Below” and a couple of other shorts that are in post. In addition, she is starting production on her own piece, “An Affair For The Birds” at the beginning of 2017.

   corey    Corey Landis is an actor in Los Angeles. He has appeared in 11 feature films and nearly as many shorts, recurred on “That ‘70s Show” as Young Red Forman, and has starred in over 100 commercials, most frequently as the spokesman. Landis is a singer-songwriter who just released an album with legendary Beatles engineer Geoff Emerick. He also co-directed the feature-length documentary “Toy Masters” about the He-Man franchise.

 

christine           DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT – Christine W. Chen  “The Earth Below” for me is a combination of my admiration for Puccini’s opera “Madam Butterfly” and the themes of Alienation, Woman Power, and Unrequited Love. Ever since I watched the opera “Madame Butterfly,” I have been fascinated with the balance and influence of East meets West. This stems from my upbringing as an Asian American, which often times consisted of finding equilibrium between these two very different cultures. Growing up, I often felt “stuck in the middle,” never fully identifying with either my family’s cultural ideals or those of my Western friends.

       For me, “The Earth Below” explores some of these emotional struggles as an Asian American – not feeling like I belonged, wanting what I was told I should not want, and being constantly alienated within my own family and amongst my friends. The story of Madame Butterfly also touches upon the strength of being a woman in a misogynistic environment. Though we are lucky in the U.S. to have progressed in the treatment of women, much of the world still does not see women as equals to men. In the original story, Butterfly’s handles her fate weakly and is limited by her cultural circumstances—I wanted to explore a different perspective. In “The Earth Below”, Butterfly’s strength grows as she recognizes and embraces her own self-value and independence. Finally, I wanted to explore the question: “Can you love more than one person at a time?”

      Society puts pressure on monogamous relationships and it is interesting to challenge these societal norms and put the characters through the ebb and flow of passion, developing relationships, forbidden and unrequited love. It has been an amazing opportunity collaborating with my long-time friend and writer, Eric Hwang. When I pitched the story to him and to the rest of the crew on a challenge to develop our first science fiction drama, the support has been incredible. Together we have been able to put together a tiny glimpse into this story that we hope to eventually develop into a full-length feature. -Christine W. Chen(website)

 

    eric WRITER’S STATEMENT – Eric Hwang –  The initial story concept for “The Earth Below” was pitched to me as an adaptation of Madame Butterfly that takes place in a dystopian world where men no longer exist. I was excited by the project because of the opportunities it presented—it was a chance for me to write a female lead character and create a story in a science-fictional world. The challenge was tying it to an Asian-American theme.

     I was primarily determined to stray away from Puccini’s portrayal of a weak and submissive Butterfly and make her a more complex character with agency. In the process of unearthing her personality and her relationship to Luther (the analog to Puccini’s Pinkerton), I found that the story lent itself so organically to one of the most challenging and fundamental AsianAmerican experiences: the reconciliation of a dual identity. Butterfly’s plight of having to decide between staying on her own planet and escaping with Luther is a direct parallel to a struggle that many Asian-Americans face: whether to adhere to the expectations of parents and ancestors or to pursue individual desires. The film echoes this existential crisis—one that is not easily explained to outsiders and one that does not have a clear resolution. The relationship between

    Butterfly and Luther is maddening—their attraction for each other is undeniable, but both are held back by their confusion and obligations. Pitting these clashing and sometimes contradictory emotions into an urgent circumstance allowed the characters to give in to the reckless part of themselves—despite the heartbreaking consequences they both know will follow. I have always adored complicated love stories, strong female characters and science fictional worlds—it was a privilege to be able to blend these elements with “The Earth Below”. – Eric Hwang

 

      taylorTaylor Camarot – Director of Photography.

Taylor Camarot is a cinematographer based out of Austin TX, specializing in dramatic narrative work. His visual approach pushes what would be unconventional to the scifi genre, forgoing traditional tropes and focusing on being honest to the story. Through his process, he highlights the capacity and beauty of human emotion.

 

 More info to come as the film has not been released as of publishing.

Follow Links to the films trailer and for more information.

The Earth Below IMDB

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