Here there be monsters (socratic) wrote,
Here there be monsters
socratic

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More Randomness

I am a terrible watcher of films. There are about a thousand reasons why, but three or four stand out. For one I tend to get inspired to write or think really easily, and I can't wait for the whole movie to end before expanding upon them. It means that during a movie I really like I will tend to pause it and spend significant time writing while I SHOULD be watching, or write while I watch, which is never a good way to go but something I can't resist. Another issue is jealousy. I get jealous really easily, it's something I try to control and drive back, but I have trouble watching stuff where someone achieved great things at a young age, at least if they are things I wanted to achieve. I have absolutely no jealousy of a guy like Bobby Fischer, because I never wanted to be a great chess player, but an author or a film maker or a football player, and I get tense. It's neurotic, stupid, counterproductive, all of that. I still can't help it. I can acknowledge it, but that's not a solution. The first step to solving a problem is admitting you have it, but I'm not sure about the steps that come after that. Maybe the jealousy is a good thing in a way, in that it keeps me from being overly complacent, but it is definitely more of a problem than a boon. It makes me feel ashamed of my work when it doesn't measure up, drives me towards inaction, and is part of the reason my self esteem is such a writhing mess.

At least my ears are flat against my head. no tape or nothing, they just naturally don't protrude. Pretty awesome, huh?

My beard on the other hand...well it's not a beard...it's a scraggly group of rough unattractive hairs that protrude and darken my once creamy and wonderful facial skin.

25th Hour is a very well shot film that does not show up well on DVD. Too much detail in the backgrounds for the lower resolution TV set to handle it. You can tell that the cinematography is about 2 steps short of absolutely brilliant, but you can't see everything that should be on screen, and that's a shame. It's a really good film. Solid, polished, very watchable. I have to give Spike Lee his props for it, especially the way he moves away from the ideology that he's so associated with (and even the name of his film company.) This is a New York film, but it's a film about an Irish guy that's REALLY about an Irish guy, and while it has a few references to race in it, he lets the characters be white. I'm not sure he was capable of that when he was much younger. Way to go Spike, you've definitely increased my respect for you, even though I already liked a good deal of your work.

Edward Norton is a really excellent actor, almost a chameleon at times, but I don't think he's going to age well as a performer. I have no evidence or reasoning to support this, it's just a hunch. He's WONDERFUL in his 20's and 30s, but I don't know how he'll be in his 50's and 60's. I hope this is just an insane and totally unjustified thought.

How long would you have to be in a relationship before you would put up with your significant other being sent to jail? It's probably a matrix depending on what they did and how long they're going to be away for. If they're going away for a year for some minor drug offense, most people would feel compelled to wait after only a few years or even month of being together. They might cheat while the person was away, but they wouldn't openly disavow the relationship. If they were going away for longer for a heinous crime it'd be much easier to sever ties. You can dump a murderer with little remorse even if you have kids together. What I think the most difficult situation would be is long time but minor offense. Heck, what if your spouse got 25 to life for a murder that you KNOW he didn't commit because he was with you at the time, but he got convicted anyway? How would you deal with that? Could you really abandon him knowing that he's innocent, not just believing it but knowing it as fact? Could you handle waiting for a third of your lifespan while he languished? Would you know eachother when he came out? What if you wanted children, how would you go about dealing with that? I think the prison system is really rough and has a lot of problems. I'm not saying there's a better idea out there, but man oh man. On the other hand, I think what we really do need to do something about is improving the quality of our prisons. People in jail need a cleaner more supportive environment. I'm not advocating Club Fed like treatment, but jails should be clean and disciplined, treatment for psychological disorders and disease should be the norm. We need to crack down on prison rape and wipe it the fuck out. Prison should not be the same thing as hell.

The thing is, we are all of us unprotected. They could come at any time, especially with this government. I've never done anything illegal in my life, except for buying some porn when I was 16, hardly a jailable offense, but I've been shooting my mouth off online and laying into them. I'm not delusional, I don't think I'm on their radar at all or that they care about a fat slob New Yorker with an axe to grind to a couple dozen people who are willing to listen, but they eventually might. They do in China. And it's not even necessarily the feds that are the problem. People get pinched all the time by mistake and get sent up without a fair or honest trial. You think that the state of the prisons doesn't matter for you because you'd never do anything to earn a trip to one of them? Guess what, not all those trips are earned, a lot of them are undeserved, and the state of prisons is a concern for all of us. Not just for selfish reasons, of course, but they are a part of it. One of my paranoid fears is that I'll be in the wrong place in the wrong time, or say the RIGHT thing loudly enough Ashcroft's Jackbooters will take notice, and within a week I'll be lying on the floor bleeding out from a shiv to the liver. This is not a realistic danger, not yet. White skin and a Bronx birth certificate are a pretty good shield, but if I were darker or came from Lebanon, well it'd be a different game. I think that the prison system in this country definitely needs an overhaul, and one to make it better for the prisoners. Take out the cable TV, fine. Make them do work behind bars? Doesn't bother me. But it needs to be a safe, clean, healthy environment. Because like it or not, not everyone who ends up in the hooscow deserves to be there.

Of course we also need to stop locking up people for the horrible crime of living while black, something that Spike would probably agree with me on, but that's a different and even more profound issue. In many ways this country has not evolved past the horror that was the post-confederacy South.
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