25 May 2009
23 May 2009
Warm long days (like June 22nd long) that start early at the beach, with two tanned boys playing in the water, trekking back up to our encampment for a breather on their large toweled estate, chomping on cold fruit, while dad watches/reads from his chair and has a laugh.
Warm long days (that seem to last a week) that have two tired boys with sand on their feet crashed-out/napping in the warm car with windows down and wind blowing and classic rock playing and dad driving through the canyon with his sunglasses on thinking about twenty years past while holding hands with his youngest in the back.
Warm long days meeting up with brothers and cousins and mom and dad for a bbq. and jazz playing off in the distance and remembering our little brother who passed away way too young and then heading off to see a summer blockbuster in IMAX.
Warm long evenings with a cigar and some wine sitting in my brother's backyard too stuffed to eat anymore, but politely accepting one last heaping of dessert from my sister-in-law as the kids swim in a warm pool with the pool and yard lights throwing dancing shadows as dancing kids leap to watery landings from ledges tall and terrifying into their own unknown futures reflecting one day upon a warm evening's past.
Warm long evenings with tan calloused feet upon my desk as I scribble some remembrances into two leather journals for my sons (for their high school graduation gifts in 8-10 years) and reading some of my old journals from college when I wrote about their mom and their dad in happy times when the world was young and bodies were taut and lusty passions were summery things that made all memories tan and tenable.
20 May 2009
15 May 2009
13 May 2009
12 May 2009
- Bachelor … Bad
- French but Not Quite a Francophile
- All Obama, All the Time
- Band of Brothers … the Next Generation
- Albany, NY
- Beverly Hills, CA
- La Jolla, CA
- Perth, Australia
- Ontario, Canada
11 May 2009
08 May 2009
FatScribe is pleased to post the following guest piece by Caleb Garcia.
She wears the hats she needs, no hat left unworn,
As if she wore them all along, they rest weary and torn.
Always what I need her to be: mother, hero, friend,
Roles that keep a role-player rolling ‘round ‘til the end.
With the heart of a giant, she floats through the day,
Grace in every action and the warmth of sunny May.
She creates with her hands and she loves with her smile,
A confident, sure, identity, that never leaves for a while.
She knows what she wants, and boldly pursues,
The poster child of courage, to live and dream the hues.
Thank you for always believing, it means the world to me,
Destiny sealed by a respectable character is what I always see.
Her giving unending, her thoughts on others dwell,
Lost without her, I would be, a man drowning, one who fell.
In this life, there’s strong and then there’s Mom strong,
Happy Mother’s Day and thank you for my song.
For FatScribe, Caleb Garcia
(Caleb Garcia is a Junior at the University of California, Irvine)
07 May 2009
Notwithstanding the several-hundred year time-span that separates the Bard from Mr. Kelley, there are many similarities between the two writers apart from their background, viz., their prodigiousness, importance as writers, and commonalities in their work.
William Shakespeare's return to popularity is really quite remarkable, especially if considered in light of recent academic history. As David Gates of Newsweek eloquently expressed, it was believed that the “multiculturalists had supposedly frog-marched [the Bard] out of school curriculums.” (6) But, Shakespeare, of course, has not always been out favor on American campuses. It wasn’t, as historian Lawrence Levine evinces for us in his Highbrow/Lowbrow: The Emergence of Cultural Hierarchy in America - until the Academy appropriated the Bard that he became passé. Thenceforth, Shakespeare's greatest works became elitist protean projects to be dissected, deconstructed, and finally denounced because of their dead, white, patriarchal author. To challenge the canon became a cause celebre, with Shakespeare and his works fodder for the PC movement. While it still de rigueur in most circles academe to stomp on Shakespeare's work - if not his grave, cold these past 400 years at Trinity Church - there seems to be a brief respite from the PC tempest on some American college campuses.
Likewise, there is little doubt regarding the impact that David E. Kelley is having in the television industry - today's Globe Theatre. Although no one would readily confuse Kelley's television writing with the great works of the canon, he is nonetheless the bard of television. While most would not be willing to label Kelley a Shakespearean scion, when one compares the two writers, however, he's far and away the closest television has yet produced, with intriguing similarities evident in their work, influence, and business acumen. David E. Kelley got his first big break, as a writer, on L.A. Law due to his ability to write gripping dialogue and his uncanny instinct to draw plot from the day's headlines. (19)
The first thing to strike the casual observer in looking at Kelley's television show and Shakespeare's play is that both have wonderfully colorful ensemble casts, each with approximately nine principal players. Indeed, many of these characters come from disparate backgrounds and have interesting quirky personality defects. Upon further inspection of the two works' general reception, both are rather polemical. Ally is a show that many either love or hate (usually because of its too fantastically bizarre comedic special effects: tongues stretch several feet for a quick lick on an ear lobe; eyes "bug-out"; when couples break-up, the dumpee is summarily picked-up by a trash truck and throw into the back; and babies have been known to dance their way into a few scene stealing moments). The show has stirred-up controversy not only because of its topical nature (religion, relationships, sexism, feminism), but also because of its double entendres, "adult" humor, and hemlines.
01 May 2009
"Have you seen me? I am a fountain pen that used to belong to a decent bloke whoI lost this overly philosophic (admittedly self-important) pen recently. Disappeared into the ether. Have no idea where it could have gone (I've checked my car, the last restaurant I remembered being at, around my kids' XBox360 where I was practicing to kick my kids' butts next time we play).
took good care of me (well at least he didn't pick his teeth with me). He wrote semi-literate notes to his friends and even kept a couple of journals for his sons with me and my indelible emerald ink (as proof that they once loved him after they turn on him in their teens). If you find me, please return me to Gramercy Carriage House in Los Angeles."
-- Thus Spoke Penathustra.
I love a good bargain, and when I see one I spring into action like a stealthy ninja or hungry jaguar. I circle my prey not giving away my position to other interested shoppers, and then pounce on bargains 40%, 50%, and 75% off with feral aplomb. Armani jacket 90% off? Mine. Montblanc fountain pen 50% off? Gone. Two-for-one on Puma kicks? Done and done. That's a weakness we all share, I think, right?. I (like you, I'm sure) don't acquire trinkets or junk because it's on sale. It has to be value-laden, well-made items that will last. Something about getting a name-brand on the cheap can make a Saturday morning; but, then losing it later, knowing that someone else now has it? That'll stick with you for a while.
And, now that I've lost my fountain pen, I see her all over town. She's looking good, though a little older, but still with a timeless elegance and matching curves. When she stares at you, you see beauty, even if she is standing on her porch with arms crossed, pissed that you brought the boys home again 15 minutes late. And, it just kills me, rips my heart out sometimes, to see her with another. She and her new "owner" have a new little one, and are happy, and have new large savings accounts (they are about to buy a new house). She still comes to mind, lo these years later, with memories sad and happy. But it's the way I lost her, that puts a bitter memory on my tongue. The thing that has helped me get over this loss, though, is just letting it go. I used to sit up many sleepless nights wondering who was writing with her, and at which fancy hotel on some sun-drenched stretch of the Cote d'Zure. Was this new scribe writing better stories with her? Were they going to write a better ending together? Are his lines as witty as mine, and does he flourish at the end of his splendidly crafted sentences?
These wonderings don't plague me with sleepless nights very much these days. Time does indeed work wonders, like an ocean break just pounds away at the rough boulders and smoothes them out. Hold on to those bitter pills and you'll soon overdose on the misery of it all. Let God work a new life for you, my friend, and before you know, you're on your way. Not sure where, but at least not where you were sitting there in a self-induced personal coma. Which reminds me, it's Friday night, and I'm going out to World Cafe in Santa Monica to meet some friends. Wait ... you gotta be kidding me! Where are my car keys?!
Now that we are officially at the first 100 days for the Obama Administration, I find many things to talk about in regard to where BHO is attempting to steer this giant ship called America. However, let's focus like a laser, dear reader, on the biggest problem I perceive with BHO: Obama has become the "Ubiquitous American President" who puts his imprimatur on every economic crisis, business scandal, or inconvenient viral outbreak. Where Bush's Uncle Sam was percieved on the world stage as "bully," Obama's Uncle Sam if he's not careful will be perceived as the "daddy state." We as Americans have been a hardy lot, with do-it-yourself skills, and an indefatigable ability to overcome and prosper throughout our 300+ year history. We in the blogosphere are living examples of this. We feel like voicing our opinions, and we start blogs, websites, and even Internet companies. Obama, unfortunately, is ignorant of the business and entrepreneurial side of Americans. He, as an academic for a time in the ivory tower, and then as a politician in the marbled halls, was not inculcated with what it means to run a business or think like an entrepreneur. He is familiar with passing laws and making policies (and discussing them in the classroom) that regulate businesses. Which is partly why BHO is so quick to get in front of scandal, crisis, and TV cameras. (He reminds me of Tony Villaraigosa, Mayor of L.A., in this regard. To borrow from Will Rogers, the man has never met a camera he didn't like.) He wants to discuss, talk, opine, and then stroke a check while arrogating business unto himself (witness his refusal of several banks who wish to return TARP money and rid themselves of the harsh terms accompanying the bailout).While some call this leadership (the preternatural ability to find an issue and wax eloquent with teleprompter at the ready), I say it weakens Americans to have a "daddy state." Our kids don't become better athletes, students, or citizens by having mom and dad do the work for them. We rear great citizens, and watch our brood become self-disciplined students by allowing our kids to fail. Letting them stumble at times, and then providing direction, mentorship, and a loving parental shoulder when needed. Struggle is good for us Americans. The butterfly must struggle out of the cocoon; the diamond must have pressure; the David sculpture must be chiseled and hammered and sanded with coarse paper. Eventually we shine. On our own, with appropriate boundaries (read, limited government), we succeed and lay a foundation for future generations. Cutting multi-trillion dollar checks to "solve" problems only lays a quicksand trap for our grandchildren, a millstone that will keep them from prospering and inheriting what has from our foundation been a birthright: the ability to succeed.
Who keeps kicking my soapbox? All right, all right. I'm done. Sheesh.