Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Disturbing attack on a Muslim cabdriver

Given the environment in New York these days, sadly, this should come as no surprise, but there it is.

On a related note, Bloomberg made another good speech on religious freedom and the Cordoba House development.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Liz in China

My godsister, childhood friend Liz is heading out for a semester in Beijing. Jane and I are so in awe of her. She has started a blog and which I have added to the blogroll (which, I note, is sorely in need of some refreshing.)

The Moviegoer

Last night I was speaking with Jane and made a reference to Dennis Hopper in Blue Velvet.

Jane: (long silence) Is that the horse movie?

Me: The horse movie? No, I don't remember a horse in it.

Jane: Oh no wait, that is National Velvet.

Me: Right, not the Liz Taylor movie. Blue Velvet was David Lynch's creepy masterpiece showing the dark side of small town America. With Dennis Hopper and Isabelle Rossellini. David Lynch made all these groundbreaking movies in the eighties like Eraserhead and The Elephant Man. Do you remember the TV show Twin Peaks?

Jane: Yes

Me: Well, that guy.

(Full disclosure: I might not have been quite that cogent last night. I did some homework on IMDB for this post.)

I am still geting used to being with someone with minimal interest in film. In fact, I am still assimilating the idea that there are intelligent, sophisticated people with interest in cultural and world affairs who simply have little to no use for movies. Jane reads Shakespeare and Salman Rushdie and the Economist on the subway. She is no intellectual lightweight, but this curiosity does not extend to film. She sees blockbusters every couple months and on occasion will see an arty film or classic that she really enjoys (O Brother Where Art Thou is on this list, and I think Chinatown, although she might have just been humoring me.) She has movies that she watches periodically and counts among her favorites (I will let her share that list with you herself.) But spending a free evening in the cinema, talking about movies, referring to movies as points of reference for something going on in her life (things I do ad nauseum), not so much.

We are getting better at dealing with it. (Read: I am getting better at dealing with it.) If I go to a movie by myself and call her afterwards, launching into a long-winded discursive commentary on it, I have gotten used to stopping in the middle to see if she is still interested. It's a learning experience.