fighting the lack of good ideas

6 movies

I want you to watch these 6 movies (in this order):

Watch them with a notebook and pen or pencil handy (yes: use physical writing and recording tools; don’t use your laptop, tablet, or phone).

Write things you see that jump out at you about the story – how it is told, what is explicitly stated, what is implicitly hinted-at, what is alluded-to, etc.

Start with the very first thing you see after the title credits finish.

I’ll give you a hint, and highlight a small handful of items from the first ~15 minutes of The Wizard of Oz:

  1. Everything is gray (well, sepia)
  2. Dorothy is whiny
  3. Dorothy is obsessed with her dog
    1. Why is Toto going anywhere with Dorothy off the farm grounds?
    2. Especially, why is Dorothy taking Toto near Ms Gulch’s cats?
  4. Dorothy is an orphan
    1. Auntie Em & and Uncle Henry are on the farm, but
    2. no parents anywhere in sight
  5. When Dorothy wakes up in Oz, everything is in eye-popping, brilliant Technicolor

Tell me what you find – I’m intensely intrigued to see how your lists compare to mine.

the fishing’s great!

Several years ago, we lost my great-uncle Don. This is a story from him, as handed-down by my dad.

We had been fishing all day. Rowed north and south across the pond. Rowed east and west across the pond. Saw turtles sunning themselves on low tree branches. It was hot. It was muggy. It was cloudless.

Hours went by. And more hours. As dinner time neared, we had caught precisely….nothing. Bupkis. Zilch. Zero. Nada. Don even brought out the Vibra-Bat. When the Vibra-Bat came out, you knew it was time to pack it in: if Don had ever caught something with the Vibra-Bat, I’m pretty sure he would’ve died of a heart attack. The Vibra-Bat was the lure of last resort. If the Vibra-Bat came out of the tackle box, you knew there were no fish. Anywhere. The pond was empty. There might not have even been an amoeba. No fish could pass-up the Vibra-Bat! So if it came out, you knew the day was up: because no fish was EVER caught with a Vibra-Bat. Not. Even. One.

The Vibra-Bat was out. It was time to row for the Bronco. It was time to put your poles away, folks. It was time to plan for dinner – no explanations as to why there were no fish coming home: the Vibra-Bat had come out!

As we came ashore, a station wagon pulled-up. Out hopped an excited dad! There was a whole friggin’ posse of kids in the back.

“How’s the fishing?” he asked.

“The fishing’s great!” replied Don.

“Hey, kids! Let’s get out and start fishing!” exclaimed the dad.

As the boat was hurriedly tied atop the Bronco, Don said, “boy – I’m sure happy he didn’t ask how the catching was.”

That was my uncle Don. Always ready to answer what, exactly, you asked.