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Saturday, August 22, 2015

Guy Advice: Meaning of "I'm Fine"

This is just another in my series of helpful decodings of cryptic phrases often uttered in seemingly benign circumstances by those of the female persuasion. In this edition, we address the infamous "I'm fine." This dismissive little all-purpose phrase is often uttered in a seemingly innocuous manner, perhaps imbued with a hint of joviality, accompanied by a brave little smile. But that, dear friends, is all part of the carefully plotted snare. Oblivious to the danger, you then go about your daily chores, convinced that the world is your doggie bone and you are in good hands.

Yes, all is well, bud.

Lulled into a false sense of security, the male of the species often "steps in it" without realizing that "it" is waiting to be "stepped in." Of course, the true meaning does become clear later when he comes home and is greeted with his clothes, guitar and entire vintage cd collection strewn about in the back alley. One imagines that Megyn Kelly, upon entering her abode after moderating that debate with The Donald, was quite quick on the draw with "I'm fine."

Science has not yet found a perfect response to "I'm fine." Unfortunately, something that you said reminded the subject of that incident in 10th grade when she wore her shorts backwards in gym class and the coach sent her back to change, or her first date ended with that flat tire. Taking immediate action is seen as instrusive, and taking no action is interpreted as utter-f'ing-indifference. The best reaction is to pay a visit to that Sports Bar you saw on the way home from work and watch the Knicks get beat again, just to prepare yourself for what awaits.


Sunday, August 16, 2015

Stupid Decisions

Learn to take a little responsibility once in a while. Everybody reading this makes bad decisions because sometimes we all are stupid about something. Nothing is more boring and dull than someone who is always right, because nobody is, myself certainly included. People will like you more, you'll learn more from your mistakes, and you'll just smile and nod your head in agreement when you see stupid posts like this one.

Yes, you.


Friday, August 14, 2015

Dr. Smith Meets Captain Kirk

The Doctor and the Captain

William Shatner Jonathan Harris
The look.

I don't know what the occasion was, but there was a day on the Paramount Desilu lot in the '60s when the stars of all the different shows of the time got together to meet and greet some fans. Star Trek, Lost In Space, Batman ... they were all there. I am guessing it was some time in 1967, perhaps the fall of that year. But, it just as easily could have been late 1966 or early 1968.

Anyway, the point of this post is just that one photo. I've posted other shots from that day, such as Adam West with Leonard Nimoy, Jonathan Harris and Leonard Nimoy. To that collection we add here Jonathan Harris with William Shatner.

It wasn't particularly difficult to get them all there. They filmed on adjacent soundstages. However, the juxtapositions are still intense for fans of the show.

If anyone knows what the date and event was, drop me a comment. It was a magical day for fans of '60s television, the true golden age. Since Yvonne Craig was there, and she was on Batman during the '67-'68 season, I am going to take a wild stab and say it was September 1967, to promote the new season.

By the way, I pity the young boy (I think) in the lower right, who just missed immortality by being out of frame.


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Bees and Flowers

I don't have anything clever to say about this one. It is just a pretty picture, from mid-July. The plants are growing and the bees are flying. Did you know that bees are necessary for plants, and plants are necessary for just about everything else? Anyway, a beautiful summer day in the park.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Harold Lloyd and The Babe in "Speedy"

Harold, the Babe, and a smiling guest in the background. No, it isn't Gary Cooper.

Just for a change of pace, here is a classic clip of Hollywood's vision of New York City driving in the bad old days. The cab driver is Harold Lloyd and this is from the movie "Speedy" from 1928.

During filming, the Southeast corner of E. 58th Street and Sutton Place.

New York City doesn't change much over time. In fact, sometimes it doesn't change at all. Unlike, say, Rome, the buildings that are preserved invariably are kept in use and aren't just monuments to bygone eras.

The same location today. Yes, the building in the immediate background is virtually untouched almost 90 years later, though the buildings across the way have changed into massive apartment complexes. That's New York for you.

The last part, "On weekends he drives a bus," is not New York City. It is Los Angeles. The streetcars are Los Angeles Railways Huntington Standard Streetcars. This was a Hollywood production, after all. Filming in New York must have been expensive back in the day, even though true film historians know that just 20 years before, New York City was the Hollywood of its day.


Sunday, May 24, 2015

Manhattan From Space

It's a Bird! It's a Plane! It's...

Click on the picture for a full-size view.

One of the themes of this blog is pictures of Manhattan. I know, that topic doesn't grab everyone, but since that's where I live, well, it's unlikely to change.

Astronaut Scott Kelly took the above view of Manhattan. No, it's not from an airplane, or a drone, or a balloon. It is from space.

Kelly took the picture of the island of Manhattan from the International Space Station Saturday, 23 May 2015. Photo courtesy of NASA.

To me, incidentally, the most interesting thing about the shot is the impressive view that it gives of Riker's Island. That is the state prison at the very top of the picture, right next to La Guardia airport. It as the large island at the end of the unusually long causeway. Not having been there (no, really) and never having seen very many pictures of it, I'm impressed by how large it is and how much detail you can make out. Further east (meaning, towards the top of this shot) and out of view is another island, Hart Island, where thousands of indigent New Yorkers are buried. Yes, New York City has a habit of doing odd things with its islands - Roosevelt Island (in the middle of the island), for instance had an insane asylum on it that still stands.

The large green spaces in Queens to the upper right are cemeteries, I believe. Yankee Stadium is visible to the left, while the relatively new Hudson River Park and Chelsea Pier - right down the street from my own corner of the universe, and the destination of the Titanic back in the day - stand out surprisingly well down at the lower right.

Overall, a terrific shot that shows how much some alien civilization will be able to see about our own lifestyle when the light waves hit them in a few centuries.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Dramatic Video - Flying Like An Eagle

This is a great video released by the BBC on 14 March 2015. It shows an eagle, Darshan, flying off of the world's tallest building in Dubai. He has a Sony Gopro-type camera strapped to him - don't worry, he's fine - and provides a unique view of that it is like to glide down to a safe landing. NO EAGLES WERE HARMED IN THE MAKING OF THIS VIDEO.

Among the many sights along the way are the harbour and the famous suspended tennis court that the eagle glides over. It's all for a good cause, the preservation of animal life by Freedom Conservation. The video quality is spectacular in my opinion. This version, though edited, shows the eagle's landing, which many other versions omit. Put it in full-screen mode by clicking on the little box in the lower right corner of the video, and get out of that mode by hitting the escape key on your keyboard.

To me, one of the most fascinating aspects of this video is that the bird has been so highly trained that, despite the fact that its destination is just another spot in the distance, he knows just where to go. But then, they've been training eagles for hundreds and hundreds of years and know what they are doing. Darshan was trained by falconer Jacques-Olivier Travers in France. He descended about 2,700 feet.

I have seen two different versions of this. In one, the eagle finally lands near a fountain at the building’s base. In another, he returns to his trainer on the beach.

Anyway, hope you enjoy it like I did.

In one version, the eagle flies back to its trainer in that orange rectangle in the city center.