Sentential Links #207

Linkage!

:: As a kid, I had no clue whatsoever what the song was about–I only thought the whole “Skyrockets in flight” thing was cool, being nuts for fireworks, never stopping to consider the impossibility of enjoying the visual spectacle during a sunlit afternoon. Now, 35 years older and wiser, I totally get it that the whole “skyrockets” thing is one o’ them there metaphors. Deep thinkers, those Starland Vocal Banders. (Yup! Loved the song as a kid, because I had zero idea what an ‘afternoon delight’ was. Just a neat song. Then I went about twenty years without hearing it, until it turned up on a 1970s compilation CD that I bought in 1995 or so for some other song. I played “Afternoon Delight” and got one or two verses in before I realized, “Hey! This song is about Teh Sex!”)

:: It’s simple really. A plane crashed and a group of strangers who really know each other but don’t is stranded on this mysterious island inhabited by polar bears, a smoke monster, residential tract homes, a hatch, a group called “the Others”, giant foot statue, clipper ship and a plane in trees, temple, force fields, a lighthouse, golden pond, a hydrogen bomb, and this great little cove for fishing. (I’ve been kind of vexed by LOST — I’ve had the feeling that I should like it, but when I’ve tried it, my reaction has invariably been “Meh”. I watched the first five or six episodes of the first season, and then I bailed out when I decided that I just wasn’t interested enough to keep watching. I tried again several times over the next few years, when they’d have recaps followed by season premieres, but it never took. I don’t know. I hope the fans had fun with their finale, though.)

:: What is most surprising about the film is that it is anything but the convention breaker many made it out to be, solely because of the homosexual slant. In essence it’s a very conventional romance, whose narrative, through gripping, offers few surprises.

:: Pac-Man, on the other hand, was simply a ubiquitous part of the background noise of my early adolescence. A very pleasant noise, to be sure… the opening theme song and the pathetic little “zoink-zoink” sound when ol’ Packy gets eaten can still bring a smile to my face. But I can’t remember the first time I saw or played the game; it seems like all of a sudden, it was just all over the place, appearing fully grown overnight like dandelions on the front lawn. And it still is all over, if you’re paying attention. Arcades have gone away and cabinet-style coin-op games are pretty rare in general, but if you encounter a vintage game out there somewhere, odds are good that it’s going to be a Pac-Man… or at least one of those combo units that have several classic games in one cabinet, and Pac-Man is always an option in those. The longevity of the cute little yellow mouth and the pop-eyed ghosts who are his mortal enemies is nothing less than astounding. (Wow, do I ever remember the Pac-man craze…but really, Ms. Pac-man was such a superior game, with its different mazes and whatnot. I miss arcades, to be honest….)

:: It is a day we will never forget as long as we live…. Richard and I were living in Portland, Oregon on this day and would stay another 4 years…but this day was one that would rattle us both with excitement, fear and awe forever! (Wow…someone else who lived in Portland at the time of the eruption. What an amazing day May 18 was.)

:: Oh, Funky Winkerbean, I’m glad you’ve finally decided to give in and just embrace emotional devastation as the engine for all your drama.

:: Howabout we have everyone remind each other about how he saved the world over and over and over again! The more they talk about how great he is, the more it reminds us that we haven’t seen any actual evidence of that supposed greatness, and the more hollow and useless he seems. Until at the end, we get a funeral scene filled with characters telling us how much he changed their lives forever with his brilliance and awesomeness…only to never ever ever mention him again the second the dirt is heaped on his grave. (Wow. One question, though — who is ‘The Sentry’?)

More next week!

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1 Response to Sentential Links #207

  1. Roger Owen Green says:

    You are correct, sir. Ms. Pac-Man (or the Ms., as I used to refer to her, er, it) is a far superior game. wasted many a quarter, and it's the ONLY arcade game I ever got reasonably proficient at.

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