Thursday, April 15, 2004

"Crossroads Film Festival Post-Game Report" (Column)

This was the first column I ever wrote where I threw the rules away. It's about 95% true. I just don't remember what's untrue now.

I’m a dedicated film nut, so I spent most of last weekend at the Crossroads Film Festival. I had planned to write a coherent account of it, but since the first three nights ended at Hal and Mal’s, I’ve discovered that most notes I have are illegible. I’ve decided to write down what I remember. If you were there, some of this will seem familiar. If you weren’t, maybe you’ll want to give it a go next year.

Thursday night, Parkway theater. Saw “Leo.” Had the guy from “Shakespeare in Love” in it, with Elisabeth Shue, the one from the babysitting in Las Vegas movie. Not so good. Too long. “Up, Up, and Away,” a short film, two minutes long. Much better. Not too long.

Went to Hal and Mal’s for a pale ale. Had more than that. Had political discussion with folks from another free newspaper. Fell in love with a bartender.

Thursday, April 1, 2004

"Bumper Sticker Politics or the Band That Scared Your Mom Has Sold Out" (Column)

This one is dated, too, but because of the ads I mention. I'll also mention that at least one blogger out there plagiarized my column, lifting my lines about Iggy Pop word for word. It was pointed out to Planet Weekly by half a dozen different readers, who found two sites that had done it. One had written-and-displayed two weeks after me, and the other was done five weeks later. We don't know if the second guy plagiarized me or the other guy, which is why I said there was "at least" one blogger who ripped me off. I don't care. It's nice to have written something good enough to have been stolen.

There is a certain segment of the population whose – how shall we say it? – stupidity prevents them from being able to separate who a person is from what they do, and who a person is from what they believe. They’re unable to see someone as a whole, instead defining them by a particular belief, or by something they do. What could be a good neighbor is instead dismissed as a “dirty liberal.” What could be a good friend is shouldered aside because he supports capital punishment.

(I am put in mind of a particular mouthbreather who visited our Web site and insisted that he would refuse roadside assistance from anyone with a Kerry/Edwards sticker on his or her car, which made me wonder what he does to everyone in the service industry. “Hey, you in the Che shirt! I’ll pump my own gas, punk!” “Excuse me, miss, before you bring the menu, do you believe in a faith-based nation or should I change tables?”)