Movie Fun

Movies/shows/entertainment are fun. You know what makes them less fun? Learning how they’re made.

It’s actually the same concept as anything you buy. The studio/writer/producer reads the market, sees a potential gold mine, listens to some pitches, picks a few, asks for some demo reels, then they pick 1 or 2 to start production.

Now…the reading the market part is the most important. The studios are going to invest a lot of up front money so they really want to make sure there is a rather large group of potential movie-goers that will anxiously await the moment tickets are available. The greater the anticipation, the greater opening weekend will be followed by the plateau of ticket sales, then followed by their ebb.

Enter the hash tag. Or social media, or comment boxes…all the same thing. Trends and tendencies create metrics which studios gobble up like hungry hippos. These metrics show big-ticket items and if they are getting hotter or cooling off.

Now, the vast majority of the time, studios don’t invest in something controversial unless there is a very good chance of return on investment, and that chance depends on ensuring that movie-goers are either extreeeeemely dedicated to the movie’s concept or are very manipulatable by emotionally gripping advertising. And what is the most emotionally charged topic in the history of the human race?

Fear of death. Or of dying. Whichever.

Because no matter what you believe, the one thing that none of us knows is what happens after the ol’ ticker stops ticking. No matter that what happened BEFORE it started ticking doesn’t scare you at ALL, but for some reason we are all scared about the after part.

So the next time you feel those tugs on your emotional purse strings to slide money out of your pocket and into someone else’s bank account, just remember to ask: are you about to give your hard earned money to an entertainer/show/movie because you know it’s entertainment, or because you believe, deep down, that doing so just might, MAYBE, help you alleviate the fears you may have about The End; and maybe, just maybe, the fiction you’re about to hear has more than a 0.0000000001% chance of being real?

Enjoy the show. 🙂

The “Gun Problem.”

We do not have a gun problem in this country. We have a corporatism problem wherein the arms industry is propped up by the federal government and they happily hop along with no care about the lives those industries end. Stop the wholesale arms industry that is backed by the federal government, which is a rather difficult thing to do since most of the guns on the planet are supported by either the US government or the Russian government, and then we can talk about mass shootings.

Favorite quotes

“You’re a daisy if you have.”

– Doc Holliday

“Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.”

The idea of shame is still ignoble to me, but the meaning of this quote has deeper implications.

– Horace Mann

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s. Look at the tyranny of party — at what is called party allegiance, party loyalty — a snare invented by designing men for selfish purposes — and which turns voters into chattles, slaves, [and] rabbits, and all the while their masters, and they themselves are shouting rubbish about liberty, independence, freedom of opinion, freedom of speech, honestly unconscious of the fantastic contradiction; and forgetting or ignoring that their fathers and the churches shouted the same blasphemies a generation earlier when they were closing their doors against the hunted slave, beating his handful of humane defenders with Bible texts and billies, and pocketing the insults and licking the shoes of his Southern master.”

– Mark Twain

“People have this idea that they have to focus on others to be happy but they forget to take care of themselves so that they CAN help others.”

– Jacob Frasier

“To achieve liberty and peace, two powerful human emotions have to be overcome. Number one is ‘envy’ which leads to hate and class warfare. Number two is ‘intolerance’ which leads to bigoted and judgemental policies. These emotions must be replaced with a much better understanding of love, compassion, tolerance and free market economics. Freedom, when understood, brings people together. When tried, freedom is popular.”

~Ron Paul

“I prefer peace. But if trouble must come, let it come in my time, so that my children can live in peace.”

~Thomas Paine

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

~Edmund Burke

“Hope is a tease designed to prevent us from accepting reality.”

~Downton Abbey, Season 5/Episode 4

“You know what happens when you burn a bridge? You got to learn to swim…or fly.”

~Jessica Jones, Season 1/Episode 7

“People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.”

~V for Vendetta

“Reasoning will never make a man correct an ill opinion, which by reasoning he never acquired: for in the course of things, men always grow vicious before they become unbelievers.”

~Jonathan Swift

“Ya know, the Bible is the Bible and if you live in these United States then your Bible most likely has the same basic layout as the four different versions in my library. So when I can look in the Bible and see that it (not me) says that homosexuality is a sin, then it probably says the same thing in yours. It also says I can beat my wife if she gets out of line or speaks her mind, and that I must sacrifice animals on a burning alter in order to atone for my sins. So why is it that because the guy that bowed out of doing the benediction at Obama’s inauguration is getting slammed for preaching a portion of the Bible he feels is important? Why is there a prayer at the inauguration at all? Why is it a Christian prayer? Why in English? I’m pretty sure all of these issues could be avoided if we just paid attention to the 1st Amendment and pay specific attention to the part that calls attention to “respecting an establishment of religion”. One of this government’s jobs is to protect our right to believe how we wish, without deference to any particular religion, and continuing to have opening prayers and benedictions loaded with political correctness is both unconstitutional and lacking in backbone. Also, defining what a Christian should be, or what a Christian should believe, is not the job of the government. And lambasting a preacher for believing in a concept the Bible teaches in a small handful of the many, beautifully written passages therein is simply an ignorant waste of energy. Every person lives the portions of their respective religions with which they are most comfortable. Not all agree, but we must all respect their rights to believe the way they do. And that’s also why religion is to be protected by government, not taught by it.”

~Jacob Frasier

“When I was a kid I lost both my parents. Freak thing, ten years old- BANG! – mortality. So I grew up livin’ real hard; racing cars, smoking, drinking, sleeping with any girl I could find… Real stupid, dangerous lifestyle… then I turned eleven.”

~ Scene from Mindhunters

“Just because you are a statistic, it doesn’t mean that your life’s worth is in anyway diminished. Statistics add reference, not value. Ergo, vis-à-vis, concordantly, etc…”

~ Jacob Frasier

“Love makes fools of us all.”

~ Salem, S3E3

“The truth will out.”

~ Shakespeare

“She is so over the hill that she is below sea level.”

~ from the movie Valentino

“The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country.”

~ James Madison

“I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.”

~ Thomas Jefferson

“Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”

~ Nietzsche

“Pompous tools run the world.”

~ scene from Madam Secretary

“He is not deceived who knows himself to be deceived.”

~ Legal maxim

“Beware the fury of a patient man.”

~ John Dryden

“Any day you wake up, maybe you die.”

~ The Wheel of Time, book 11, ch 19

Why you’re special (part deax).

In addition to the fact that you beat over 100 million competitors in the race to the egg your mom had waiting for you, (great job!!), you were born with unlimited potential. And not because you are destined for greatness, or predetermined to have a certain path for your life, or cursed to repeat the mistakes of your forebears…but precisely due to the absence of all of those things.

You were born with a clear slate, a blank canvas. You were not born cursed, evil, tainted, blessed, anointed. You were simply born a champion. You won that race to the egg, and now you open your eyes every day with the option to accept your lot in life, or to live your life to the fullest. Life will deal you all sorts of hands ranging from preferable to painful, but you will choose whether or not they are “good” or “bad.” And if it doesn’t kill you, then it is a good hand because you may have just won another race, another battle, and you may be bleeding but you will still be breathing.

You only have one life, and this is it. There is no guarantee of an afterlife, but you are guaranteed this life now so go with what you know. Believe all you want about what happens after your heart stops, but don’t live your life hoping for the chance of a better one after this.

Find your passion and chase it.

Love yourself. Love your family, then your neighbors and your community. All in that order.

Be kind to others who cannot help themselves if you are able. They only have one life as well and they may have been dealt a less pleasant hand than you were. That doesn’t mean always “give them money or food,” but give them the knowledge that will enable them to get back in the game, and if they show determination and perseverance, then that is the time that considering material help will be beneficial to their success. Invest time and effort in someone to help them. Tossing them a few bills because you’re too busy is cowardly and impersonal and keeps you from growing as a human being.

Knowing how great you are and spreading that knowledge to another is the most empowering thing inside you. You are first among millions, as is your neighbor, your friend, your mate. As champions, settling for less than excellent is beneath us. Don’t miss the chance to live any moment to a lesser level of excellence.

Shrug off ancient dogmas keeping you in chains of mediocrity and slavery. Question everything you were taught as a child. Ask “why” every time you find yourself doing something simply because you have always done it that way.

You only live once, and that is it. That is all anyone truly knows. And you made it to this point. Against all odds you made it.

Don’t take this opportunity lightly.