Fiction confusion

It was going to be a work of longish fiction about 4000 words at least, but it turned out to sound better as poetry, free verse style. Wound up with 2000 word poetry instead. Have a month for it to settle before submitting. I call the “event”, in this writer’s calendar, fiction confusion, because it should have been fiction, but winds up as poetry with quite a bit of editing.


Bette Midler songs

Bette Midler has sung three songs I would put on a playlist, The Rose (1980), Wind Beneath My Wings (1988) and From a Distance (1990).

The Rose is a haunting song about the abstract meaning of love, the need for love, when love is absent and when one will find love, ending on a hopeful note that spring and therefore love is around the corner.

The lovely Wind Beneath My Wings touches the heart strings with a song about being there for someone as a strength and helper. It’s got emotional truth and sincerity and warmth.

From a Distance is a sentimental, peaceful, uplifting Bette Midler song that could be regarded as beautiful. The ebb and flow gently nudges one to a higher and nobler place. “From a distance you look like my friend, though we are at war…From a distance I cannot comprehend what all this fighting’s for.” Then the lyric, “God is watching us, from a distance”, perhaps as a reminder.

Midnight Oil

Three songs of Australian rock band Midnight Oil are what I play often of theirs and those ones alone. I used to have one of their albums, but apart from a couple of tracks, the album sort of sunk for me, at the time. Walked over to the second hand record store or was it the bin? The songs I still have are about social issues that on the surface seem entirely plausible. They have strong vehicles. Beds are Burning, Power and the Passion, and The Dead Heart are all powerful sounding music with a rhythm and flow that captures you.

Riveting entertainment

Autopsy is a television series from Britain’s ITV studios that analyses the life and last days of famous people. Dr. Jason Payne-James looks at the cause of death that is on the celebrity’s death certificate, but looking closely at the evidence he concurs with the certificate or comes to another conclusion.

The subjects of the series are people well-known in film, music, and sports. The days leading up to the untimely deaths of actors Robin Williams and Heath Ledger are analyzed. In the episode I am looking at today, the life and death of the Irish-born, Manchester United footballer George Best are scrutinized.

The tricky winger is regarded as the one of the greatest UK footballers [soccer] if not the best ever. But his downfall was that he had a disease—he was an alcoholic. Death by alcoholism is not mentioned on the death certificate, but Dr. Payne-James postulates that Best may have died from alcohol withdrawal syndrome. Payne-James investigates.

Payne-James faces the camera with his findings interspersed with a psychologist’s assessment and dramatic recreation of Best, his family, wives, partying, and old stock footage of Best on the field playing soccer and when he is in the public eye.

The path of Best’s alcoholism is scary. This progressive disease over thirty years certainly had an impact on Best’s health.

It’s a wake-up call for anyone jolted into looking after themselves after watching this program.

The reason for Best’s drinking habit is given at the start. He was a shy young man and became a social drinker.

This led him to going to the bottle when challenges in life came his way.

One such challenge was the death of his mother. She couldn’t take the public criticism of his son when he gave up football. She took to the bottle and eventually died of alcoholism.

A lesson of this episode is to look after yourself. Keep off self-destructive tendencies no matter what it takes. Do something about it. This program can scare one into submission to doing the right thing.

Mysteriously good

Half way through alien arrival movie Arrival (2016) there’s a fuzzy sense of plot which keeps you wondering about what is going on to extraterrestrial linguist Louise (Amy Adams). With the military backing her she’s trying to decipher the intent of aliens as twelve alien shells cause panic all over the world. Yet flashbacks seem to be Louise having a breakdown, or is stress fatigue, or she is really having meaningful, significant memories about her daughter.

Maybe she is going through something else, perhaps psychic phenomena giving her a sixth sense.

As everything in Arrival comes out in the wash, the resolution is meaningful. Does knowing what will happen to someone you love, whose death is impending, matter as much as celebrating the life itself?

Yes, Arrival is all rather mysteriously good.

No swearing, sex or violence, but there is psychic phenomenon and the presence of aliens which may put some viewers off. As a film, I don’t recommend it for fans of action science fiction because Arrival may be too slow—except this slow burn is very suspenseful. I found the film riveting and all very interesting.

However, on second thoughts, the drawn out, fascinating, edge of your seat communication process between human and alien—where the humans aim to find out alien intentions—is spoiled by making it obvious. The subtitles explain what the aliens are saying and reveals why the aliens are on earth, but they could have made it subtle. Though subtitles might have been necessary for story clarity.

However, that is overlooked in a terrific film.

Year: 2016, DVD release date: 14 February 2017 (North America)

My response: Better one. Experience positive, virtue positive.

Easy on the ear song

Al Green’s and Annie Lennox’s Put a Little Love in Your Heart (1988) from the movie Scrooged makes better sense if you have seen the movie, but it is still pleasantly lightly textured and ambient. In the movie, the key character comes around to being generous after being greedy. As a standalone song, you may think that the song’s preaching at you. Happy song, though, which is well worth it: a song about loving your neighbor as yourself and the smooth, easy on the ear delivery is cheerfully good.

A little reading and reflection

What I’m reading. After reading and reflecting on the book of Job I went back to the start of the Bible with Genesis, with the intention of noting facts of the scripture rather than reading primarily for themes. Thematic analysis is what I had been doing, but I wasn’t sure if I was being true to the text by seeing themes that may or may not be there, for what was the purpose of writing devotionals.

I’ve also finished Star Wars, the original novelization of the film. This year it’s been re-published in a trilogy of books. This trilogy is the original Star Wars trilogy, from A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, to Return of the Jedi. I was surprised how they condensed two hours that seems longish into a shortish book. I expected longer, but that’s how this film-tie in went.