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Stairs for Christmas Eve

December 12/24/20

There's a lot going on. I'm leaving out the important stuff for now.

Ran three miles Tuesday, walked two yesterday, walked eleven miles today and ran 2600 stairs out at Boston College. Hockey hair coming in.

Dickens, Van Gogh, Thoreau, and me are easily the best walkers in the history of art. It's not even close. Dickens wrote the bulk of A Christmas Carol while walking the streets of London at night.

Listening to the Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar five-part Christmas episode "The Nick Shurn Matter" again. Also listened to it this morning when I awoke at three. I've decided to make it a Christmas tradition moving forward. When I am back in my house in Rockport, listening to this episode will be an annual affair. Hopefully I can share it with someone who loves me and she will like it, too.

I've never seen Home Alone. Which is strange in one regard because I'll watch just about anything Christmas-related. Not Elf. I don't understand how someone can see Will Ferrell and think, "that's a funny guy." Or Jim Carrey. I imagine is Home Alone mostly a kid thwarting two baddies who aren't that bad, with pratfall-y type action.

For me to care about something, I need to see human relationships and human interaction. Even when that interaction is with the self (e.g. Buster Keaton's The General). But just pulling a rug and making people fall, I could not care less. Action sequences in films usually bore me. You know how it will work out before it starts. You could take those three minutes out of the film and the film doesn't change. Shorten the three minutes to two. Doesn't matter. Sex scenes and wedding scenes are likewise also difficult for me to get through. I think, "Okay, movie, move it along, let's get going here."

It feels odd to even put this disclaimer, but given that so many people now view the world solely in terms of liking people who think like they do, and disliking anyone who thinks anything differently, I have no issue with others loving Home Alone. It's just not how I am. I need the relational. The relational can take many forms. But I need a true human element coming to the fore by how the relational is presented to me, the different angles we see the relational from.

This is depressing. It's from a dating site. it's extra-depressing when one factors in that this is what constitutes one of the smarter people.

Them: Good morning. That's quite the profile. You got me wanting to know more about you. I am always going to speak my truth and that's when all the right people will come into my life.

Me: Truth is not something for which the possessive is germane. But good luck.

Them: Good luck to you

(Interlude of twenty minutes, while this person who is miffed and enraged because they sense that someone has said something smart to them, though they don't understand it, which puts them down, tries to come up with withering final word when all that happened was someone stated a basic truism of reality.)

Them: Hopefully, this experience humbles you

Me: What does that cryptic statement even mean? My understanding that truth is autonomous ought to be humbling?

And, of course, the thing that happened before will be repeated again. There will be rage stemming from total ignorance and a pervading feeling of inferiority, and statements about patriarchy, etc.

I'm like an alien among another race.

As for what is and isn't humbling, it is gallingly arrogant for a person to think that they own the truth. That's one of the most pompous, egomaniacally delusional statements a human being can make. Do you own nature, too? The elements? What else do you own? It's certainly not a clue.

It's a Wonderful Life is on tonight. Watch the water. The film transitions via water, and every key sequence is initiated by water in some form.

Something that struck me in that Johnny Dollar episode--he mentions to the landlady that the Dodgers (who were still in Brooklyn, of course) won the Pennant that year. This was 1955. They won the World Series after being thwarted right on the cusp a bunch of times. Why did they say the Pennant and not the World Series? That was the big, breakthrough year for the "Bums." The only World Series championship of Jackie Robinson's career. A stacked team--Robinson, Pee Wee Reese (who is vastly underrated), prime Duke Snider, Roy Campanella (the AL MVP for the third time--catchers got lots of MVPs back then), Gil Hodges (who should be in the Hall of Fame), Carl Furillo (strong hitter, cannon arm in the outfield). Koufax was a rookie that year, but he wouldn't be good until 1961. Unlike the Dodgers teams that won in 1959, 1963, and 1965, this one was offense-driven, whereas those other squads did almost everything with pitching, speed, and defense, especially the '63 and '65 squads. The landlady in the Johnny Dollar episode sounds like she's probably a Yankees fan.

There are two recordings of Orson Welles and his Mercury Theatre troupe doing A Christmas Carol on the radio, one from 1938, the other 1939. Lionel Barrymore usually played Scrooge, but in 1938 he was laid up, so Orson Welles--who was the narrator--took the Scrooge role. My favorite radio version. The announcer is Ernest Chappell, later to be "the man who spoke to you" on Quiet, Please.

Will now watch Meet Me in St. Louis. The Halloween sequence is also excellent. This is a huge final week of the year for me. I need to perform my royal Boston arse off.


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