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Citizenship, Puerto Rico, and more!

Here's a story about an American citizen who was held for deportation by ICE in Chicago. He even showed them his birth certificate, but they were like, nah, fake. Wtf?!

The article quotes him as saying, ""That's crazy. Because I was born in Puerto Rico. I never knew that Puerto Rico wasn't part of the United States." You know who thought Puerto Rico wasn't a part of the United States? Idaho congressional candidate Vaughn Ward, that's who. In a Republican primary debate with Puero Rico-born Raul Labrador, he referred to Puerto Rico as a country, and then, when Labrador told him it's not a country, he responded with, "I really don't care what it is." (This guy has also been in the news lately for plagarizing Obama's 2004 DNC speech, as demonstrated by a video that one of the fringe Republican competitors put together.)

Ward just the nomination to Labrador this Tuesday, so it's Labrador who will face off against the Democratic nominee Walt Minnick, notable for rather different reasons. Minnick was a Nixon White House staff member, though he resigned in protest when Nixon fired the special prosecutor. Most amusingly, Walt Minnick is the only Democrat endorsed by the Tea Party Express. (!)

Dream notes: "Belfast"

I had another very cinematic dream last week. Here's a screenplay version of my dream. I woke up remembering only images, a vague sense of the plot, and the title, so I've made up the dialogue and most of the names, with the exception of "David Allen", which I remember from the dream.

(Just so you know, this is not one of my wacky dreams. It's a very conventional story, but that in itself is what made it stand out, in my mind.)

                    "BELFAST"

INT. HOSPITAL ROOM

DAVID ALLEN'S POV

FADE IN

DAVID ALLEN is waking up.  Still a bit drugged, his vision
is hazy as he barely makes out the image of his friend
STEVE, standing beside the hospital bed.  STEVE is in his
mid-30s.  He is wearing a plaid shirt, and he looks a bit
disheveled.

                    STEVE
    How are you feeling, David?
    
                    DAVID
    Mrmph?
    
                    STEVE
    Say.. Do you remember what happened to put you
    here?
    
                    DAVID
    Mm... urf....
    
David's vision fades in and out.  As his head droops,
he sees his tube-covered body.
    
FADE TO BLACK


FADE IN

Some time has passed.

DAVID wakes up again, this time for good. STEVE is still
there, but he's now wearing a leather jacket.

                    STEVE
    You okay, David?

OVER STEVE'S SHOULDER, we see DAVID.  He is also in his
mid-30s.  He is in a hospital gown, but he has fewer tubes
attached to his body than before.
    
                    DAVID
    Yeah, I think so.

                    STEVE
    How much do you remember?  About what happened to you?

                    DAVID
    Not much.  I was in a car accident...? 

                    STEVE
    Do you remember the last thing you saw before the
    accident?

                    DAVID
    The last thing I remember was getting into my
    car.  Why, is there something important I forgot?

The camera is behind STEVE, and, as it PANS DOWN STEVE's
back...

                    STEVE
    No no, it's alright.  Get some rest now, buddy.

The camera STOPS at waist-level; we see STEVE tuck
a gun away, back under his belt.

                    STEVE (V.O.)
    Everything's fine.


CUT TO BLACK


INT. DINING ROOM

We're in a rustic, wooden house.  The dining room is large
and dimly lit.  STEVE is having dinner with CONOR DONOVAN
and his wife KATHLEEN.  They are both in their 50s, and
slightly heavy-set. CONOR is a red-head, with a full beard.

                    CONOR
    ...and he says to him, "But it's only a frog!"
    
CONOR guffaws at his own joke, while STEVE politely chuckles.
KATHLEEN shakes her head.

                    STEVE
    Well, I'll get going now.  I'm glad David has
    such fine folks to help him recover.

STEVE stands up, and he drops his napkin.  As he bends down
to pick it up, CONOR and KATHLEEN see his STEVE's gun,
stuffed behind him, under his belt.

                    CONOR
    Why do you have that?!  Why did you bring that thing
    into my house?!

STEVE panics.

                    STEVE
    I don't want to hurt anyone!  I swear!  They're making
    me do it!

                    KATHLEEN
    Do what?  We're all friends here, Steve.  If you're in
    any kind of trouble...

                    STEVE
    [*Distraught*] They're gonna hurt my family.  They said
    I have to find out if he remembers what he saw, and if
    does, I have to shoot him.  Oh Christ.. but everything
    will be okay!  As long as he doesn't remember,
    everything will be okay!

                    CONOR
    Remember what?  You're not making any sense.

                    STEVE
    I better get going...

STEVE rushes outside, and the DONOVANS follow him out.


EXT. OUTSIDE THE DONOVANS' HOME

                    CONOR
    Steve!

The MAID runs out and tugs on CONOR's arm.

                    MAID
    Mr. Donovan, everything will be okay.  David will be
    cared for.

As the MAID leaves back into the house, STEVE pauses and
looks back.  He grimaces.  He then runs past THE DONOVANS,
racing back into the house after the maid.  THE DONOVANS
are shocked into inaction for a moment before they give
chase as well.

We follow THE DONOVANS as they run through their house and
out the back, just in time to see STEVE run into THE
NEIGHBOR'S HOUSE.  (It's a large mansion made of stone
bricks.) They hear a LOUD BANG.

THE DONOVANS are terrified.  They stop running.  They
stare at the neighbor's dining room windows, lit by a bright
orange light, and they see STEVE's silhouette running across
the room.

                    KATHLEEN
    Oh no!  He's done it!

                    CONOR
    No... No...

THE DONOVANS run into the house.  They find STEVE on the
telephone.

                    STEVE
    Yes, he's collapsed!  I'm not sure if he's breathing!
    What do I do?!  [*Looking up at THE DONOVANS*]  I didn't
    touch him!  He just collapsed!  I think his condition's
    taken a turn for the worse!

CONOR runs over to DAVID and cradles him in his arms.

                    CONOR
    He is still breathing.

                    STEVE
    Oh, thank God. [*Closes his eyes*] Oh, please, Lord,
    let him pull through...

WIDE SHOT, as everyone prays for DAVID's survival

Pauchi and The Matinees

Wow, I can't believe last August was the last time I used my DSLR to take concert photos. In any case, I was happy to have the chance to do so again twice this past week!

Friday night, I went to see my friend Felipe perform with Pauchi Sazaki from Peru:

pauchi-subterranean-arthouse.jpg

Pauchi is an experimental violinist who puts on a very eclectic live show using pedals to loop her various instruments and sounds. My favorite part is when she looped her own giggling, and it was super creepy, like something you might hear in a haunted house. Here are the rest of my photos from her show.

Earlier in the week, I saw a friend's friend's friends' band, The Matinees. They kept introducing friends from other bands to play with them just about every song! Here's one of their friends helping out on the cello:

the-matinees-cello.jpg

I like how the colored streamers taped onto the window behind them give the scene sort of a meteor shower look.

And here is an adoring fan, watching them play: (Okay, actually a painting on the wall. :P)

the-matinees-audience.jpg

Here are the rest of my Matinees photos.

The Laughter Thief

I’m floating in the corner of your room. You can’t see me, but I’m watching you. I’m waiting for you to laugh.

Some call me a sprite. Others, a thief. I hover in theaters and comedy clubs. I flit through parties, scanning the crowds. I peek as lovers flirt. I prefer genuine laughs, but, in a pinch, even an insincere one will do. After all, no laugh is entirely fake.

When I find one that I like, I swoop in and shear off a tiny piece of that laugh. The unsuspecting donor feels but the gentlest breeze. They’re suspicious for just a moment before dismissing it as their own exhale.

I regard my bounty: a sliver of laughter, a slice of joy. I quickly shove it into my bag for safe-keeping.

* * *

Billions of years later, the Universe is dying.

Life has been extinguished in our galaxy. Even the stars are sputtering their last breath. No one is left to laugh; no laughs are left to collect.

I put down my bag. Its sides bulge. The bag squirms. A few snickers leak out from the top. I pull on the drawstring and let all the laughs loose! They swarm out in every direction, giggling and chuckling, guffawing and chortling. They soar through the air, up, away, and out of sight.

Free at last, they howl from star to star.

* * *

[laughs]

About May 2010

This page contains all entries posted to the klog in May 2010. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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