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Some outriggers, some movie reviews, some white supremacy…

April 22, 2011

This is an outrigger at the cove across from where I work.  In the far distance you can see Molokini, a popular snorkeling spot to which, being poor, I have never been.  Not the form in the middle distance.  That's just a rock.  Behind Molokini is the island Kaho'olawe, which is good for nothing, as far as I can tell.  Rumor has it it is used to conceal and conduct top secret military experiments, but the person who told me that was a ways off his nut, so who knows.  He also said they were conducting top secret military experiments in the cavernous bowels of Mt. Haleakala.  I don't know, but that seems like an awful lot of top secret ops for just a few square miles.  This is also the  guy who revealed his murder method of drowning the bludgeoned victim in a bucket of salt water before tossing them in the Pacific.  As far as I know that has not happened.

Anyway, what we do know is that back when the US declared martial law on the islands during WWII, the military used Kaho'olawe for not so secret target practice and continued to do so until 1990.  This is probably because Hawaii was a US state by then and all the live-fire training was putting off tourists looking to lounge on the white sandy beaches of Maui.  How the actual residents of the island felt about it was largely irrelevant and always has been.  White Supremacy, GO!  I can't get too uppity about it really because I would have needed a visa to get here otherwise, which probably would have deterred me completely and I would have ended up in Fresno or something.  I don't know what Fresno is, but it sounds horrible.

So a conservation party got a hold of Kaho'olawe and are working to rebuild the native tree population, which has been difficult because there isn't one.  The island has no fresh water and it nearly never rains.  It was used as a penal colony in the 1800's which didn't really work either because the prisoners would just swim back to Maui when they got too hungry.  It failed also as a cattle ranch for obvious reasons, and after they were no longer let to pelt it with bullets the US couldn't really think of any use for it, so they had no problem handing it over to the native Hawaiians for their wildlife and cultural preservation projects.  Of course, by then there were hardly any native Hawaiians left because most of them got small pox or various sexually transmitted diseases from European traders way back when.   I was wondering, if Hawaii only became a state in '59, what did the US do for an even number of stars on the flag?  Did they just leave the rows uneven?  Or did they just put a bunch of stars on it and later decide they represented states?  Anyway as far as flags go, I don't think the US is a very good one, as it isn't very visually striking.  Same with the Union Jack, and especially the Hawaiian state flag, which looks Jack and Old Glory vomited forth an incestuous love child.  Even Canada has a better flag.  I mean, it's got a leaf on it, which isn't real tough.  Bhutan has dragon.  Tough but not visually effective.  Although, being culturally illiterate, maybe in Bhutan dragons aren't tough either.  Here are some more outriggers:


This is the same spot, from a different angle, on a different day.  These things are here all the time, but they were only twice worth taking pictures of.  I have a digital camera which, on a sunny day, is actually worse than my starter camera back when I was nine.  You all remember what film was, yeah?  Well, on that camera I had to look through the viewfinder to line up my shot, and hope it came out alright.  Sometimes entire roles at a time were undevelopable, which was a bummer.  My current camera doesn't have that problem.  In fact, no pictures are ever developed, but they do make it onto this blog now and again.  Actually that isn't true because Long's Drugs has been sending me "a courtesy call" since February, reminding me to pick up a couple of head shots that I don't want, since I needed them that day within one minute of the order, and thought they could just print them off like most people can generally do in their homes.  Well, they couldn't and after that day the pictures were no longer relevant so I'm waiting to see who caves first, them or me.  It's April now and they just called this morning, so it looks like they're really after their twenty cents.  It's just a recording, so I don't feel bad hanging up on them repeatedly.  

Anyway like I was saying, my digital camera is the next best thing to crap on a sunny day because I can't see the screen and it doesn't have a viewfinder, so I just snap away and hope it turns out alright.  I mean, I can kind of get the gist of it, if I know where my visual landmarks are.  That random swimmer in the first shot was not one of them.  Even this wouldn't be a problem if A) I were rich or B) …

Well, this wouldn't be a problem if I were rich because A) I could buy a camera with digital output and a viewfinder, and B) I could afford a proper computer and photo-editing software so that I could fix my crappy shots into works of magnificence.  That's just going to have to wait until…That's just going to have to wait.

Movies I recommend: The Fighter.  For the first time in a very long time Christian Bale has put forth the performance of which I  have long known he was capable.  I was rooting for him back when he was working for Disney and singing for his supper.  Then he finally made it, but all of his movies were absolute crap.  Well, they finally gave him something to work with, or else he got sick of being crap, so he plays an excellent crack addict in this film and I can feel smug in my ages old prediction that he would prove himself worthy.  

Other people I have made positive predictions about long beforehand: Heath Ledger, but he up and died.  I don't think anyone will argue with me though that at the time of his death he was on the fast track to renowned success, and not the fleeting kind.  Prediction two: Joey King.  She starred as Ramona Quimby in the recent adaptation of Beezus and Ramona, and she acted her costars straight off the set.  She will make a significant name for herself, and her child-star status will have no effect on her later career unless to bolster it.  The chick who plays her sister, who's on the teen tabloids these days, hang on, wikipedia…Selena Gomez, has maybe a year left before her career takes a dive, unless her agents are really creative.  Even then, creative agents are no substitute for charisma and talent, of which she has neither.  Two years tops, but that's optimistic.

Movies that sucked: Due Date, with Robert Downey Jr. and that bearded guy who''s in pretty much every movie lately.  Downey Jr. is a talented actor, but word around the campfire is he leads what could be considered an excessive lifestyle, which would explain why he appears to be taking whatever crap movie comes his way and pays the best.  Felony ain't free, boys and girls!  Anyway, that bearded guy isn't half bad either, nor was the concept for the movie, which was something along the lines of "Odd Couple on the Road."  In fact, I was looking forward to seeing it.  So imagine my disappointment…
What did them in was the writing.  It was shit.  The writer's thought process was entirely transparent, and not to mention juvenile.  First of all, the movie is divided into roughly one thousand mini scenes, each of virtually no consequence.  The writer thought "Here's a one liner.  Oh, that's great!  Here's another one liner.  Here's a zany monologue!  This is hilarious."  The problem was that he wasn't very intelligent, so his one liners are trite and forgettable.  On top of that, he wasn't able to work more than one into a conversation, so every scene ends before it gets anywhere.  That means the entire thing is inching along on the power of these crap jokes, and you're left not so much wondering where the movie is going, but where it went.  I'm an hour into this thing and they're dumping Beard Guy's father's ashes into the grand canyon, and I'm like, how the hell did we get here.  I know shit has been happening, but the scenes were so short that none of it appeared to have any meaning.  And, at the end of the day, it didn't.  It was a meaningless film with a level of humor that might appeal to teenage boys, but even they won't be quoting the better lines amongst themselves.  It will make its way onto no one's favorites and die the silent death of mediocrity.
Anyway, Downey Jr. better jump to it, because he can't ride the wave of Tropic Thunder forever.

That's all for today.  I have my cast party tomorrow the Pulp Fiction play that I didn't tell you guys I was in.  That film has withstood the test of time, and is quotable to this day.
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