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Saturday, October 29, 2016

The Writer's Life 10/29 - From Barcelona to New Hampshire to a Dream

Post apocalyptic films are usually fun even when totally silly. Last night, courtesy of Netflix, I watched The Last Days (2013), a Spanish production filmed in Barcelona. Its tone is serious and it offers a slight variation on the theme. The world is struck by agoraphobia, the fear of going outside. No explanation is given, although several possible causes are suggested. That doesn't matter. Such fare is all about accepting the premise. I did and enjoyed the flick. A bit confusing at first as it moves back and forth in time, the situation becomes clear about halfway through the narrative. I was completely unfamiliar with the cast, a plus, as one brings no preconceived notions of the actors to the work. The main story line is simple. The protagonist tries to get back to his wife, undertaking a dangerous underground odyssey through subway stations and sewers. The most intense scene is a battle over a supermarket's supplies. Brothers David and Alex Pastor, Spaniards, collaborated on both the screenplay and direction, as they have for several other movies. It runs an hour-forty minutes. 5800+ users at IMDb have rated it, forging to a consensus of 6.1 of ten. On a scale of five, I say three. Although there is violence, it is not graphic. I doubt it would appeal to anyone who isn't a fan of the genre. Whenever I hear Barcelona, my mind flashes back to a line from Fawlty Towers wherein the ever frantic hotel owner Basil (John Cleese) says about the ever-harried Manuel, the waiter bellboy (Andrew Sachs): "Never mind him. He's from Barcelona."

From Yahoo News, edited by yours truly: A message in a bottle sent out by a New Hampshire man more than five decades ago has been returned to his daughter. It was discovered by Clint Buffington of Utah, who was vacationing in the Turks and Caicos. The Coke bottle was half-buried in the sand. The note inside read: "Return to 419 Ocean Blvd. and receive a reward of $150 from Tina, owner of the Beachcomber." The Beachcomber was a Hampton motel owned by the now-deceased parents of Paula Pierce in 1960. Her father had written the note as a joke and cast it into the Atlantic Ocean. Buffington flew to New Hampshire to deliver it to Pierce, who made good on the promised reward. I sent one out circa 1979. It read something like: "Life I love you, but you break my heart." It was motivated by my desire for a co-worker, whom I wanted for all the wrong reasons, namely sex, a fact I was unable to admit to myself back then when I couldn't separate sex and love.

I had a vivid dream just before waking from my afternoon nap. An old friend, deceased, was atop a tall, slender, pointy tower, shouting to me. The structure toppled and struck a house. I began weeping uncontrollably, knowing he'd been slammed to his death on the other side of the house. Does it express my fear that Trump will lose the election? I certainly wouldn't weep if the Clinton power structure came crashing down. That would be the wish fulfillment Freud believed was behind dreams.

After great luck yesterday, the floating book shop had none today. Back at 'em tomorrow.
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