Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Haven't blogged since just before Christmas. A lot has happened, and yet today i took it easy. I had to. I finally made the appointment and saw the doctor. But last night, after about 8 o'clock, i had the most severe case of hives. I don't know why, but i've had hives since childhood. But i wasn't eating anything after 6, because i knew i'd have bloodwork done, and they always tell you not to eat for at least twelve hours prior. But about midnight, i finally had to take an antihistamine, to calm myself down. I still have one swollen eye and my lips are puffed out... so i didn't feel like going to the screening i had planned for tonight.

However, i'm watching PHFFFT, which is fine, because Judy Holliday, Jack Lemmon, and Kim Novak make for great company.

Over the last few weeks, i've been looking at various sites and links, about the various Top Ten lists. I was part of the Village Voice/L.A. Weekly and the IndieWire polls. The consensus: the Village Voice/L.A. Weekly top choice was "Wall-E"; the IndieWire top choice was "The Flight of the Red Balloon". The attempt (now) to cover the entire country has its problems. One is the issue of release date. A movie may have played in New York City but not in Los Angeles, or (in many cases) vice versa. In fact, a lot of movies now open in L.A. way before they show in NYC. (The reason for this is the loosening of Hollywood standards to include independent and foreign films for Academy Award consideration. So a lot of movies are rushed to open before the end of December, which is the deadline for Academy consideration. The classic example: "4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days" played a qualifying run in L.A. at the end of 2007, but opened theatrically in NYC three months later in 2008.) But it also wrecks havoc, and you can lose track of what you've seen when. (I didn't include "The Flight of the Red Balloon" in my Top Ten, not because i didn't like it, i did, but i had seen it in 2007, and i forgot that it had its theatrical release in 2008.)

Of course, one of the things that has taken some of my time was Facebook. A while ago, there was a notice on Facebook that Aaron Sorkin was looking for Facebook stories. How people reconnected after years through Facebook. There are people who think social networking sites are insidious, i know quite a few, and i also know people who find it an annoyance.

But i have several Facebook stories. If he will permit me, there is one which crystallizes the usefulness of Facebook.

In the fall, i received a "Friend Request" from Michael. Now, it had been a while since we heard from him. For reasons that (right now) shall remain private, Michael was a teenager who needed a home, and Larry provided it in 1983. That was in San Diego. Larry moved back to New York City in 1986. It's not like we intentionally lost touch, but Michael started moving around, and sometimes he wouldn't let us know where he was. Again, not intentionally, but Michael's concerns were always very immediate. Out of sight, out of mind, in many cases.

We knew he had been in San Diego. But then, we were told that he wasn't in San Diego anymore. And we had no idea where he was. Turns out he is now in Hawaii. He just had his 40th birthday. 40. I can't believe it. He's been in Hawaii now for almost three years.

There are people (now) who post all sorts of things on Facebook: some people use it as a diary, and you know their lives more than your own! And there are amusing things, and sometimes some sad things.

But to be back in touch with Michael is a pretty amazing situation.

In terms of Facebook: you also find out some troubling news. My friend Ellen happens to be in the Middle East right now, in Ramallah. She's making another documentary there, and you suddenly realize how close some people are to the crisis.

There's so much wrong right now, and yet, as Andrea Mitchell says (she's on Charlie Rose right now), there's also a sense of optimism because people are expecting that change (some sort of change) can happen, and so there is an expectancy. But how much can Obama do, when he is being left the country in such a state of shambles? Bush is making sure that he destroys as much of the country as possible. He had ruined the economy, he is trying to destroy the environment, he started a war which is endless and impossible, he is the most evil president in my lifetime. But what do i know?


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