Posted tagged ‘gravity’

“Books and movies, they are not mere entertainment. They sustain me and help me cope with my real life.”

October 10, 2013

It has been a fruitful morning. The plants have been watered, the bed made, the laundry washed and the bills paid. I feel quite accomplished, and it isn’t even noon. On second thought, though, it does seem sort of silly to feel accomplished at the completion of such mundane tasks. People are getting Nobel Prizes, and I’m making my bed.

Nothing to do today so I figure to stay around and go through the thousands of catalogues I received the last couple of days. Maybe I can get some Christmas presents bought. I love shopping at the touch of a mouse.

Yesterday I saw Gravity in 3D. I thought about the 3D glasses we all wore when we were kids, the cardboard ones with red and blue plastic lenses. Now they have been replaced by plastic ones which look like real glasses. You don’t have to hold them: they even stay behind your ears. The old ones never did. The coming attractions were also in 3D. The Hobbit preview reminded me of the Viewmaster slides when one character seemed to stand out from the background.

I really liked the movie. The special effects were amazing. At one point I swore a bubble was about to hit me, but I think it hit the guy at the end of the row. Space was magnificent. The movie is short, only around 90 minutes, but after seeing the movie, I understand why. It couldn’t be any longer.

I remember watching The House of Wax on TV when I was a kid. It scared the heck out of me at the end when Vincent Price’s face fell apart after our heroine hit him. That outer face had been made of wax to cover the horrific scars from burns which had pretty much obliterated his face.

The House of Wax was the first movie released in 3D, but I only saw it on television. I remember one effect which I figured had been 3D. A ball on a string came right at you, and I’m suspecting people in the theater moved back the same way people do behind glass if water is thrown at it. Warner Brothers called it NaturalVision 3 dimension.

I always hesitate recommending movies to people. Because I like a movie doesn’t mean someone else will. I always cringe when I’m told a friend hated a movie I recommended so now I avoid doing that. When asked how the movie was, I just say I liked it and leave it at that.

“The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.”

February 17, 2013

The snow is heavier than it was a couple of hours ago when I woke up. It was small and light then. Now there is a fury of flakes whipped by the wind. The bird feeders are being tossed to the left and right, and the birds ride with them. The tops of all the pine trees bend one direction then the other. When I went to get the papers, the snow went up over my shoes, but the driveway was clear. I could see the blacktop. The drifts have no pattern. The wind changes all that.

My house is warm. All three animals are with me, and all three of them are asleep. I can hear Gracie’s deep breathing. She is beside me on the couch. Fern is behind me on the back of the couch curled on an afghan, and Maddie is in her chair. We are all perfectly content.

I never believed in monsters when I was a little kid. Nothing was under the bed or in the closet. My imagination led me to places rather than things. I made several trips to the moon. My rocket ships were never like the space capsules of the real astronauts. Mine stood tall, had side fins and were so big inside that the crew could walk around after I turned on the artificial gravity. The kitchen always had coffee.

I wasn’t disappointed by Alan Shepard’s short flight. I was amazed we had sent a man into space, and I figured that was the first of many dress rehearsals before the real rockets would be built, the ones with kitchens. I watched John Glenn’s capsule take off and followed his flight as he orbited the Earth. I was older then and had given up on rocket ships with kitchens.

I never saw the trip to the moon. I was still in Africa, but I was lucky enough to hear bits and pieces about the moon landing on the radio, including real transmissions. It was exciting even without the visual coverage. We were finally on the moon, but I still didn’t know what it looked like. In the imaginings of my childhood I created a stark moonscape filled with craters and rocky hills. I was pretty close.

I was sorry there were no ruins on the moon from cities deserted long ago. I always sort of hoped there would be remnants looking a bit like the Great Wall of China. That would have been the perfect touch: that and a rocket ship with a kitchen.

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