So Trump is gone and that is a very good thing. Trumpism survives, however, and will be a threat to our freedoms for years. And the virus hasn't gone anywhere. So: all indices UP. Rage might start to decline in the next few weeks, but I expect Terror and Heartbreak to continue to climb--for a long time.
All indices UP. Rage won’t subside until well after the Trump regime is over, and Terror and Heartbreak will continue to climb until someone gets a handle on the fucking pandemic.
Below the status graph is a screen grab of places authorized to distribute vaccine in my town. But—none of these places have vaccine, or only a little. The grocery store up the street from me, for example, has only one dose of Moderna vaccine.
This is all Trump’s doing—Trump the traitor and seditionist. What he’s established is a course of passive eugenics. Shameful.
As you see in the bottom photo (a page from my journal) even the coronavirus itself hates Trump.
The Coup Klux Klan. The Beer-Belly Putsch. (I didn't come up with those, just saw them on the internets--I wish I was that clever). Whatever. A dark fucking week for America. And while we were watching the redneck rampage in the Capital, the covid death count reached 4000 a day. All indices up this week--Heartbreak up, Terror up, but RAGE up the most.
Impeach and convict Trump now--and wear a mask while you're doing it.
A New Year, and the same pandemic.
If you’re a person who did something worthwhile this year—be happy about what you did. I’m seeing “people” on Twitter saying that we should be quiet about our various achievements out of respect to those who have suffered losses. Uh, no. Doing good work in the face of adversity is a positive fucking thing. So go brag.
(I'll start. My bragging: I zoom taught good classes, I wrote a big part of a new book, I did well in seclusion, I didn’t get sick).
My prediction for the coming year: things, whatever things are, all things, any things, will get worse before they get better.
But! As my boys The Clash once said, “The future is unwritten.”
This week--today, Xmas Day--Rage retakes the lead. Covid! Nashville bomb! Fucked-up pardons! Peace on Earth and Goodwill to all!
I was seeing someone on Twitter arguing again that Die Hard is a Christmas movie and I was struck by the boring flatness of the argument, after all these years. I mean—okay, it takes place at Christmastime, so, okay, sure. Why not? And if you enjoy it watching it at xmas, even better! Go watch your movie and be happy! But I was and am fed up with people trying to build up their edgy irony rep by making this argument. Enjoy your xmas movie in solitude and if you can’t keep from gabbing about it on Twitter, block me.
So, since no one asked—what are my go-to holiday movies?
I have one top fave xmas, one second place, and an honorable mention. And three New Year’s movies. And a story.
Top Xmas Fave: TAXI DRIVER
I first saw this movie in 1976 when it was showing in theaters. I got back from my father’s funeral on a Sunday evening and was sitting around the house, and some friends came by, and no one had much to say—talking about death at age 18 and whatnot is difficult—and someone suggested a movie, and we went to Taxi Driver. Because it was 1976 and we were all 18 or 19-year old guys, we didn’t want to sit next to each other in the theatre lest people think we were gay, and so we all sat on aisle seats on different rows. The movie itself was a fucking revelation. It immediately became one of my two or three favorite movies of all time. Years and years later, c. 1990 or so, Chris Itchkowski came by one December evening, and I was watching Taxi Driver, and he said “Ha! A classic Christmas movie!” and I thought—Yeah, exactly. And so Taxi Driver has become a Christmas tradition in this household.
Hmm. The trailer is age-restricted, forsooth. Someday a strong rain will come and wash all the scum off the streets...!!
Second Xmas Fave: THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER
This actually is a legit Christmas movie—Bette Davis in a comedy! Monte Wooley is terrific as the asshole guy who takes over the house. I want to be like him some day. (One of my students said I looked like him—I’ll take it). There are sad penguins. And Jimmy Durante is creepy as a sexual harasser (this might be triggering for some people) who was probably seen as comedic in 1942. I really love this movie.
Honorable Mention Xmas Fave: IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE
Because of course I like the darkness overcome with sentiment. And why not be like everyone else who likes this movie? Though in truth I’d rather live in Pottersville….
A new year is conductive to movies, too….
New Year’s Movie Number One: MAD MAX FURY ROAD
I used to watch Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome on New Year’s Eve—I was/am always touched the sadness and determination of those people trying to make new homes in the desolation, and also I have a crush on Tina Turner. But I lost my dvd of it in some move or other, so I watch Fury Road instead now, and it’s actually a better movie. Get the year-end adrenalin up!
Another video link age restriction! (Who killed the Earth?) This may give you some insight into how I see the holidays....
New Year’s Movie Number Two: A NIGHT AT THE OPERA
Because I need to laugh at the end of a dreadful year. (All years are dreadful, each one closer to the inevitable). The fourth-best comedy of all time.
I always sympathize with the exasperated manicurist. Apparently no one knows the name of the actress who played her! A comedy mystery. She looks happier in this still from the movie....
New Year’s Movie Number Three: THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES
I usually watch this New Year’s Day. Again, darkness and sentiment. Just like Pottersville, Boone City looks rocking....
A Holiday Story
A few weeks ago, a student asked if I’d ever written a Christmas story. And—I have! It’s in BURNT HOUSE and is pretty dark. Though maybe also…funny…?
Here’s a pdf: Love Puzzle
You know my entire oeuvre makes a great present, right?
So get over to my Amazon page and order some books. Your life will be better for it!
The kindle editions are at a special pandemic/holiday price!
No sure which book to get? That's understandable--it's easy to be confused by an abundance of excellence. So here's a seasonal reminder: THAT DEMON LIFE is the official community read of Pottersville!
This is just getting tragically absurd. People are dying for no reason other than the vile malevolence and stupidity of the "people" in charge. All indices up.
All the exciting answers, none of the boring questions...Thanksgiving Edition!