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~Thursday~  I waited in anticipation for the 40-foot air-conditioner-on-wheels to rescue me from the 92% humidity at 7:15 in the morning.

Shortly before the bus arrived, 70% Geek / 30% Military arrived and said good morning before diving into his latest book, the title of which I couldn't see. (And you know I tried to.) He's always reading, and it's always a hardback book. Although, as my friend Nick mused in a recent post, "Aren’t all hardback books paperbacks too? I know paperbacks aren’t hardbacks, but the opposite isn’t true."

Being it was the 7:15 bus, there were more people who work in the service industry on than usual. Mr. Martin, can you tell the court how you came to this arbitrary conclusion? "There were a lot of them wearing uniforms, your honor."

Cell Phone Lady, whom I haven't seen in a long time, boarded at the McKimmon Center stop—get this, on her cell phone. She took the seat behind me, so I was treated to a half-conversation including sound bites such as, "Yeah, I can't stand her," and "It's not your fault," and "That's why we, like, have recommendations." The times I've heard her, she is always talking about somebody. As often attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt or Hyman Rickover, "Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, small minds discuss people." Oh wait a minute, that would mean my blog...

Two ladies sitting in front of me—but both in the center-facing seats, so a distance across an aisle that caused them to have to speak loud enough for me to hear them in order to hear each other—produced this exchange:

Lady 1: You seen Jeff lately?

Lady 2: The last time I seen him... Hmm, I know he got a baby.

Lady 1 holding up her index and middle fingers, mouthed: Two.

Lady 2: He got two?

Lady 1: Two.



I went in to work early so I could leave early today. My only meeting was our weekly 1.5-hour working team meeting, which only lasted an hour. Sweet.

It's been a hell of a couple days at work due to issues associated with our student e-mail switch to Google Apps Education Edition. As Ms. Rosanadana said, "It's always something." Fortunately, I work with some smart, dedicated people and workarounds were put in place while problems were quickly fixed "in the background."



A fellow bus-rider, Ann, who reads my blog said in a comment on my Monday entry, "But hey, starting next week we'll have the annual circus: classes start AND new bus schedules/routes." To this, I'll add, "And new bus drivers."

Today, while I waited for the 3:30 city bus home, two buses came by the stop that said, "Driver Training" in the LED-lit sign area above the window that usually has the route name displayed in it.

One of them was a Triangle Transit bus with two people on it in addition to the driver. One of them sat right behind the driver as if to act like the angel on her shoulder, and it awkwardly stopped at our stop, opened its doors, but wouldn't let anyone on. I mean, really, is it important to practice opening the doors at a stop where people might try to get on when they're not allowed to?

The other one was a Wolfline bus, and it practiced passing a stopped bus that was practicing opening its doors, going around the Triangle Transit bus and continuing outbound along Hillsborough Street.



***Warning*** If you're going to attend the North Carolina Gay & Lesbian Film Festival over the next few days, and you're going to see Eyes Wide Open or Undertow, the rest of my entry is going to be about them and contain spoilers.

I arrived at the Carolina Theater at about 4:45. Mercifully, there were no protesting religious fanatics out there—to walk around, tune out, and pray for—so that was good. It gets so tiresome doing a lap around the beads for them.

Robert and I saw the 5:00 screening of Eyes Wide Open, which we both really enjoyed. It was billed as, arguably, a "Hebrew Brokeback Mountain." I'll only go with assertion only because the word "arguably" was included in it, as there's lots of room to argue about it, in my opinion.

Before every film at the festival, someone from the group of people who bring the festival here get on a microphone (which gets quite old by the fourth day and as many films, if not many, many more than four films) and thanks everyone for being there, thanks the sponsors of the festival, and then gives a short introduction to the film.

About Eyes Wide Open, Chuck Wheeler, who's one of the head muckety-mucks (I'm hesitant to say his actual title, as I'm not exactly sure what it is, and a look through the NCGLFF website didn't help me—it might be "Program Chair") introduced the film, and in doing so he made the comment, "At one point, this film contains—in my opinion—the most stunning shot ever filmed." So, of course, Robert and I kept turning to each other at various points in the film asking, "Was that stunning?"



We had about 20 minutes between films, and we walked to my car where I'd brought pepperoni rolls for us for dinner.

Our next film was Undertow, which started at 7:15. I was totally enjoying it until it took a hard (and not in a good way) right turn into stupid. It was like the opposite of the Wizard of Oz, metaphorically, going from being in Technicolor to being in black and white; that is to say, it lost its luster. The whole contrived, I'm-dead-and-you're-the-only-one-who-can-see-me, and I-only-show-up-when-you-think-about-me just didn't work for me.

With that said, I'd still give it two thumbs up (totally erect, in fact) for three major reasons— two substantial, one frivolous:

  1. Let's get the frivolous one out of the way first: This one, as did Eyes Wide Open, had two hot men as the leads.

  2. It tackled a bunch of themes, some compelling:
    • The whole reason the term MSM came about, the concept of which is instantiated several times by Miguel's assertion, "I'm not like that," even as he was having gay sex
    • Gay married men
    • Cultural traditions
    • Religion and homosexuality
    • Hate the sin, love the "sinner"
    • The gay person often being "the last to know" (or, more accurately, accept)
    • What makes a man a "man"
    • The intense freedom and affirmation of your humanity afforded by the simple act of walking down the street holding the hand of the person you love without a blink of an eye around you

  3. Those of you who know me, know I hate most mainstream movies, not least of all because they almost always have big, fat, happy Hollywood endings. Personally, I love it when people die in the end of movies.

There, I warned you there'd be spoilers. That third reason was a big part of why I liked both of these movies so much.



I thought about going out when I got home, but I settled in at home instead, and stayed there, actually getting to bed by 11:30.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
dan4behr
Aug. 14th, 2010 12:16 pm (UTC)
I saw "Undertow" last night. Totally agree with you - it was awesome and the scenery, both geographical and human, left me stunned. Plus that whole 'afterlife' thing...pretty deep.

I'll see "Eyes" later today....

Hope to see you there!!
dailyafirmation
Aug. 15th, 2010 05:37 am (UTC)

So, what'd you think of EWO?
dan4behr
Aug. 16th, 2010 09:57 am (UTC)
I liked it. It seemed a bit long, but I liked the perspectives from the entirely different culture.
My friend Ed thought it was a complete waste of celluloid and $7.50.

Every year there's a standout from the point of just being pure fun, and this year it was "You Should Meet my Son". I think I laughed 'till I cried.
dailyafirmation
Aug. 16th, 2010 04:25 pm (UTC)

You're definitely not the first person I've heard say that the laugh-a-minute "You Should Meet My Son" was their favorite.

People have such different taste in movies, about what makes it "good" to them that I try very hard to say what did or didn't work for me and to state why. It's also a reason why I'm very hesitant to recommend a movie to people when they ask for one.

Thanks for sharing, and good to see you at the festival, Dan!
(Anonymous)
Aug. 14th, 2010 05:32 pm (UTC)
Driver in Training LOL
Goofy! Let's start a list of the stuff they REALLY need to practice.

Maybe stuff like:

Pulling away from a stop smoothly enough you don't make anyone still standing fall down

Changing the sign on the bus when you make your turnaround so the correct route is displayed

How to operate the AC

I'm sure you have others.
dailyafirmation
Aug. 15th, 2010 05:38 am (UTC)
Re: Driver in Training LOL

So, so, so, so true. What was I thinking? Or not thinking. Of course they could practice all of those things, and more!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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