Tableau IV

Hello, my dear friends ūüôā

I was so tired, took a pill, and it woke me up.

Was supposed to be soporific.

A big word I negotiated on the GRE.

While the math kicked my butt.

Yes, dear friends…I wanted to bring you a film review tonight.

But I was tired.  Just run down.

And then got a second wind…in spite of my more responsible wishes.

So here I am.

Lucky and blessed…to write…and hit a button…and send it out into the world.

For this privilege I must thank my countrymen and women.

From many walks of life…but particularly those who serve in military and intelligence.

Thank you, folks!

But let’s get into the meat of this.

The premise I’m violating…is that a film critic should always write about film.

But nature would nudge a film critic to be a critic in general.

And I am certainly that.

A mixed blessing.

Things…piss me off.

But I don’t resort to violence.

I just rip to shreds with words.

Which is not to excuse my more liberal applications of invective.

There are niches carved out by our forerunners.

“Film critic” has a history.

Derided by some, it is central to the short history of motion pictures.

But these¬†Tableaux¬†are the purest “film theory” I can muster.

A chance to ruminate on the capital requirements of filmmaking.

Sure…you can make a movie with your iPhone…and whatever software you can find.

But you’re not likely to be satisfied with your creation…if you’re comparing it to something you saw in the theater last week.

And yet, the world seems to love the theater less and less everyday.

So the theater has morphed and come into our homes.



I mean, it really is something to see Vertigo in a 70mm print.

Not only do you fall in love with Kim Novak (and/or Jimmy Stewart), you fall in love with San Francisco.

Those hills.

And that music…

Bernard Herrmann.

But back to this porkbarrel film criticism I churn out.

It’s either diabolical or daft.

Or deft in spite of itself.

I don’t have the detachment to make that judgement.

I don’t have the data.

I’m a smalltime operation.

But we write our conscience.

When we see disaster, we say “Don’t vote Hillary! ¬†For God’s sake…”.

And then sometimes we gotta eat our shoes…like Chaplin in¬†The¬†Gold Rush.

“Don’t go to war in Syria!”

That was my short post this afternoon.

Because I really appreciate what Dr. Steve Pieczenik is bringing to the global debate.

A truly unique skill set.

Which brings up a very important point (thank you Flaming Lips):

“OK…I’ll admit…that I really…don’t understand.”

Intuition is a powerful tool, but we must know its limits.

Yet, does geopolitics “behave” with a logic all its own?

You can pick the fear porn of your choice: ¬†Fox News, CNN, MSNBC…the other three threes.

Around the world.

BBC, Sky…CBC…my knowledge of tele mostly encompasses stations in my own land.

So we would have to get outside.

Is there an American “style” of telejournalism?

I would imagine so.

But, all things considered, there is one aspect which will be leveraged by all nations from now till the end of time.


Americans really became allergic to traditional propaganda during the Bush Jr. (thanks Dr. P) administration.

But as soon as Obama was elected, the country went back to sleep.

By term two, things weren’t going so great for Barack.

Biden wasn’t going to cut it.

And Hillary didn’t.

But the Republicans got very lucky…that Donald Trump changed camps…and was, at this time, a conservative.

But the sleep mechanism is so powerful.

Get your candidate elected, and go back to sleep.

I was only asleep a month or so before I forced myself up…

To the front lines.

But a soldier in the truth must be honest.

So I can tell you…I have no idea what is going on now.

I have never seen such a morass…such a tangle of messages.

It’s like a switchboard from hell.

And we hope to God that someone is keeping track of all these messages.

Not just the text.  The data.  But the meaning.

Poetic meaning.

The why of     extra space.

Error as poetry.

And all means employed to make a point.

I am worried.

I am concerned.

Another war…a war in Syria…would be devastating.

And stepping back to the State Department level, we can see that that piece of ground holds no significance for us.

“America first” is going to start ringing pretty hollow unless Trump takes the wheel.

So that…those trained in the dark arts (not spells and witchcraft)…the clandestine arts of destabilization…regime change…etc.

These professionals must be allowed to work.

We don’t want war in North Korea either.

None of the stakeholders do.

And if they do, they’re insane.

You must…excuse me…as I practice writing.

As I run these metaphor by you.

I pray good things for all my readers.

Joy, happiness, safety, and peace of mind.

I hope Trump, Putin, and She She Pong (just kidding) will get their heads together.

Ain’t good for business.

This stress.

It IS, however, a story killer.

And the last story was an interminable dragging.

But again…I can no longer tell who’s lying, who’s playing dumb, who’s naturally dumb…

I have hit information overload in regards to the events following the Trump missile strike.

But I do know there’s 180 degrees in a triangle (thanks mom!).

And I got cosy with the six trigonometric ratios.

Then they attacked me ūüôā

So we will continue.

Maybe some of us will meet in the camps.

Maybe “summarily executed” will be my last role.

But when you have nothing to lose…and you have developed your inner life…your soul…or your mind…then you feel compelled to jump into the ring with the lions.

I pray and hope that tomorrow is a calm, anchored day.

We all need that reassurance…that we’re not about to be vaporized while we’re at the grocery store.

And so, dear friends, I wish you the best!

Until next time,



Tableau III

I was wrong about Trump.

I was wrong about being wrong about Trump.

I was right about Trump.

But we will get nowhere with all these “Liar’s’s” and “G√∂del’s’s”.

So first, my profound apology to President Trump.

I didn’t get it.

I didn’t go to Cornell.

I didn’t go to Harvard.

I don’t have a PhD in international relations from MIT.

I’m not a psychiatrist.

I didn’t work for the State Department for four Presidential administrations.

Etc. etc. etc.

But there’s one guy that did.

And only one guy.

I’m not worthy to shine his or Trump’s shoes.



Tableau II

In every country around the world.

There is fear of speaking.

I could file this under “surveillance”,

but I’m aiming differently.

Quite right!

There have been so few film reviews of recent times on here.

What is happening?

Well, I owe you (my dear readers) an explanation.

I am attempting to become a more responsible person.

[laughter in the wings]

I could anticipate, “Well, then what the bloody hell was the business degree for?”


That was a big step.

The most responsible thing I’ve ever done.

And the thing which nearly done me in [as we say in Texas].

So now I am out.

Two degrees ‘neath my arm.

A tailored suit in the pipeline.


But I am and have been a wreck.

And so responsibility has another meaning.

Taking care of myself.

Getting my mind right.


Sometimes I feel I’m making no ¬†headway at all, but then I recall that I’ve kicked tobacco in these last three months.

No more patches.  No gum.  No slips.

And I could talk about the allergens here.

The molds, the mountain cedar, the oak…

As an asthmatic, life would be challenging enough in this uniquely sneezy city.

But it’s the anxiety which is always there “for” me.

Like the bird ’round the neck.

The mist of the waves bathing the deck.

Enshrouding us in a cloud of fine seawater.


Social anxiety.


Existential anxiety.


We could go on and on.

And it would be nice to break it all down.

To find out if there’s anything I’m NOT afraid of.

But I pray the film reviews will recommence.

For now it is early to bed, [and a whole lot of insomnia and other misfortunes]…

The goal is early to rise.

For now it is walking every day.

A divine activity.

Takes you back 100 years.

The goal is to hit the gym every night.

It’s coming.

Fits and starts.


Just so’s the trend line is positive.

Because, at a personal level, we feel the peaks and valleys.

And we think too much.

We want to prepare.

But we forego contingencies to obsess upon paralyzing circumstances.

So, get up early.

Take a walk.

Study for LSAT and GRE (plus readings in logic and math).


Handle anxiety.  Manage anxiety.

Negotiate a medicinal route which allows for a “normal” life.

So I’m just here to share, friends.

These Tableaux.

I wish I could claim my masterpiece.

Maybe they will shape up.

But to get the word out.

The main idea.

Insomniac dithyrambic drivel.

And LOVE ūüôā


If we can hang on, in life.

If we can stay off the streets.

If we can stay out of the trash bin.

I’m ‘angin’ on to ma trolley…

Riding through the night.

I wish each of you.

The best dreams.

The best wishes.

Just what your hearts need.

And thank you for reading.



Tableau I

When in the course of life we run around,

upon merciless jags of rock,

and all our nautical efforts come to naught,

we have a new island to ponder.

And if on a pleasant day,

we can see the lay of the land

and skittishly face the inhabitants

like cats.

We can hide beneath masks.

When the transactions become more difficult

and we must switch course

preferring possible life to certain death.

We float on levels of truth.

And most important is health.

Our work lives.  Our capacity.

But our happiness.

Our frame of mind.

That I have not watched a single thing for days.

And, as such, invented a rather sprawling form to say,

“Hey! ¬†How are you? ¬†I hope you are well :)”

To my few readers, I wanted to say I’m still alive.

And thankful for you all.

But for myself I needed to partake in this transparent diary.

The most humble narcissism.

Please, if you will just lend me your ears a moment.

And a simple “like” from around the world lets me know that

all is well with the heavens.

This first tableau, chiefly a prayer.

To forgive enemies.

And to forgive self.

A way to slough off the skin like a snake

and watch it roll down the river as a phantom coil.

The film is always just an excuse to write.

And the writing just an excuse to watch a film.

But I indulge in the confessional track of John Berryman and the rest.

And so many days without the therapy of writing becomes

a disjointed feeling.

Have I said anything at all here?

Now that I have no film back to which to refer.

I am not thinking very straight.

Because I wanted to go to bed.

But I couldn’t.

And so it is medicinally late.

Not the ballet of yore.

But a rather wavy sensation.

Buffeting my bark along.

Rowing through others’ Dream Songs.

And me with my tableaux.

Gotta start someplace.

But I must reiterate.

A hearty thanks to my few readers.

Ye who have stuck by me through all of my many

chameleonic changes.

Ye who have humored me as I have delineated interminable conspiracy theories.

It is to you band of brothers and sisters that I wish to give hearty thanks!

And to my enemies.

Though they may be phantoms.


That I pray for you tonight.

I pray for you as brothers and uncles and sisters.

I pray for your happiness.

I do not pray for your destruction.

I am but a lowly runt on a road which runs out no-one knows when.

But daily I study logic.

And math.

And the two meet.

The twain.  Are one in the same.

Obverse and reverse.

[and “perverse”, as Sterling recited on the VU’s “Murder Mystery”]

It’s alright.

To be wrong.

It’s not a crime.

It’s a tort.

But it’s not good.

Such that we should comport ourselves with the judiciousness of proof burdens.

And with good deduction (Reductio ad absurdum) take the man’s word for it.

Our hinge, however, is that we do not completely trust law enforcement to nab

such elite criminals.

But we know much more than what we’ve written.

Find out who Dennis Hastert’s “roommate” was in Japan.

Ponder Jerry Sandusky.

And Jimmy Savile.

Search terms “uk child pedophile ring” or “child pedophile ring”.

I’m a Yank…I don’t know Jimmy Savile!

But I needed the name.

And just a few page results brought me back to the sickening situation as it stands.

Hastert’s 15-month sentence ends this fall.

He was, you remember, the Speaker of the House from 1999-2007.

His jail time is for the sexual abuse of boys.

And, by the way, his “fellow traveller” in Japan was none other than Tony Podesta (!)

Sandusky has (theoretically) 30-60 years of prison ahead of him.

Savile is dead.

But these rabbit holes go on and on.

They seem like rabbit holes.

For really big rabbits.

And then you climb in and find some kind of Knights Templars chapel.

“Strange Things Happenin’ Every Day” sang “Sister” Rosetta Tharpe.

I pray safety for all my readers.

And I pray for law enforcement who are bound by oath to wade through this disgusting carnage.

The only thing we have is each other.

When times are this bad.

And so I send out good wishes to all souls who find this.

And may our next occasion be more cheery and carefree.