Tuesday, November 27, 2012

T2: Judgment Day Review

T2: Judgment Day Review:

When I first saw T2 I must’ve been 7. It opens with a futuristic war between Terminators and mankind. However, even as a kid, I think I knew it was trying to say something about the future. Or at least one possible future 1997. I remember being relieved when August 1997 came and went, because that was the date the war started in the movie: “Judgment Day”.

After the war scene of course, I probably remember the T-101 (Arnold Schwarzenegger) appearing in the time vortex, getting the biker’s clothes, etc. And the role reversal between the terminators was great. The T-101 is the rebel biker and the cop is the hunter/killer of John Connor, who will one day lead the human resistance against the machines.

Now, in the first movie, the T-101 hunted John’s mom, and the role reversal means that Sarah Connor, John’s mother, needs to overcome her trauma. Which she does when the T-101 says “Come with me if you want to live.” John is a bad kid even, hacking into ATMs and using early 90s slang. Truly the mark of a rebel. So, it makes sense that the cop would be after him. But, it turns out that the cop is the T-1000, a liquid metal robot from the future sent to kill him.

I know a lot of people know this plot because it’s classic, but those are the basic details: one is the killer, and one is the protector, and mother and son need to prevent Judgment Day. Let’s get to my interpretation. For some reason, as a kid, I felt like I was a good terminator. I felt like the relationship about good vs. evil robot was somehow tied to me and my wheelchair. For me, it was the realization that technology can be good (like my wheelchair.) or evil (T-1000, who chases John and Sarah.) Now that I’m older though, I know it’s about the future in the abstract.

Specifically, it to me is about the future of technology. Will mankind use advanced technology for good or evil? Will we be bound by old prejudices? Will technology destroy us, or can humans and machines “learn” to live in peace? Initially, the “good terminator” is just a killing robot that’s been reprogrammed. But, he learns early 90s slang ( “Hasta la vista, baby!” was made famous.) with John and swears not to kill people. Not even when battling a whole police squadron does he kill people. The last life he takes is his own to prevent the future war.

The special effects and battle scenes remain legendary. The T-1000 is like a slasher-movie villain, and is almost unstoppable. He stabs whoever gets in his way. But, he is also very smart and tries to outwit the humans before stabbing them and taking their forms. He knows that humans usually obey police authority for example. And he even imitates John’s foster family. The T-101 however, knows that the T-1000 can do that, and so prevents John from going into the trap.

My favorite scene is when the T-1000 reforms his head with his liquid metal ability. His head comes apart in two; but then it reforms and you think, “Uh oh.” Heck, I like just about all of the morphing scenes. I'm even sad that the liquid metal concept was abandoned in later Terminator movies. The female Terminator in T3 just wasn’t as threatening, in my opinion. She is obviously less advanced than the T-1000.

To me, The later movies seem to undo all the events of T2, which is a great tragedy, and just means they’ll keep re-booting it. T2 had an actual message: There’s no fate but the one we make. The later films undo the message of hope, and all those great battle scenes! But, the time travel aspect of the film ensures that there’s always hope. Perhaps the T-1000 will re-appear, and will do the franchise good. Until then! Hasta la vista, baby!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Review of my book Treole Horka!:

“My name is Bruce. I was born in the 80s after a nuclear war. A time they call 20year. But, I call it butt-kickin’ time…or Justice Time.”

- Treole Horka!, book jacket

Armageddon week, Day 1: As stated before, Treole Horka! is my comedy about nuclear war and spoof on big 80s action stars, or the post-apocalyptic genre in general. I recommend you buy it if I publish it. It’s protagonist Bruce, has a monkey fused in his right shoulder (“The shoulder of justice!”) He’s a big beefy mutated rebel biker pitted against the evil Dr. Kirp who is served by an army, the B.A.D. I wanted to have Bruce use as many smooth one-liners as possible, invoking stars like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Campbell, so that it really drives home how cool he is. Along the way, he meets the forces of G.O.O.D.

A major theme is the epic battle between G.O.O.D. and B.A.D. Whereas Bruce is the go-to mutant biker who wanders the nuclear wasteland beating up “dweebs” Communists, and oppressive biker overlords, all while wearing his best punk outfit; G.O.O.D. is a cyborg army led by Commander T that stops threats to the nuclear wasteland, which are caused by B.A.D. and the evil genius Dr. Kirp. Commander T is always pumped, and calls himself “The Master of Pumptitude”. Thinking that’s
cool, Bruce follows them in their hunt for Dr. Kirp.

So, they hunt B.A.D. together. Bruce fights ninjas, bikers, cultists, mutants, the undead and giant mosquitoes among other things. And yes, he has a big gun. It’s just what you would want in a good action story! As Bruce bashes through 7-11 overlords, board game obsessed tough guys, and a trailer park with a Communist Cola vending machine, he pieces together where Kirp’s base is. I won’t give away the jokes, but if you read the sentence before, it’s some pretty absurd stuff, and still cracks me up. Bruce’s insults don’t even need to make sense to sound cool.

A major source of comedy is Bruce’s image. And the monkey. The whole monkey-in-the-shoulder thing kind of offsets Bruce’s tough guy image. “No one gets out that lucky after a nuclear war.” Also, Bruce’s “girlfriend” is the mutant Laboratory Octopus. She’s sexy, but has tentacles growing out of her head. They ooze slime and stuff. So, they are too mutant lovers with opposite sort of juxtaposed images. I really wish I could talk about the jokes, but you’ll have to read them!

As I’m good at doing, the whole story is written in a sort of faux-epic style. Contrary to what this blog conveys, I don’t always write like I’m writing a Communication thesis! Ha! Here’s a little taste from Bruce’s encounter with the dastardly Slasher Gang:

 “The Slasher Gang…” Bruce's voice roughened in deadly preparation for a snappy insult. “Not the sharpest knives in the box…”The Slasher Gang-- that bunch of rude-looking knife-nuts-- was perhaps best known for their love of sharp objects and bubble gum comic strips. Together, they formed a fearsome band of dagger-wielding degenerates under the iron rule of the infamous teen idol and criminal mastermind known only as “Razor.”

And that’s just one of Bruce’s fiendish foes to face! Bruce explores the vast nuclear wasteland and discovers such venues as a post-apocalyptic 7-11 (which is huge, and a valued resource!) a perfectly good Perkin’s Pancakes, and a bombed out pet store which arouses strange primal memories in a certain shoulder-monkey!

Will Bruce uncover Kirp’s base and discover the meaning behind the acronym B.A.D.? Will Commander T lead Bruce astray in the doomed nuclear wasteland? Will you ever find out how the heck a monkey ended up inside Bruce’s shoulder? Does Bruce do laundry? All these questions answered and more in Treole Horka!! (Special thanks to my twin, who edited it and got it bound.)

      (Bruce; photoshopped by Robert Bogl.) 

Friday, November 23, 2012


Last week, I went to my mom’s place to be with my brothers in Athens, and celebrated my birthday (yesterday!). So much cool stuff happened. I rarely ever get to see my brothers these days, so time with family is nice. I particularly enjoyed the fact that I got to celebrate two Turkey Days. One while my older brother was in town, and one on actual Thanksgiving/my and my twin’s birthday. Yes, we’re a family of three men. In fact, just got back to Columbus, so I guess I can safely say vacation is over. Early effects of Turkey coma are still setting in.
    I’ll probably have turkey sandwiches for a while at least. However, I know I promised my audience a book review, and a review of dystopian themes. How about both? As a birthday present, which was totally unexpected, my brother got me a bound copy of a post-apocalyptic nuclear war comedy that I wrote in 2006. It’s called Treole Horka!, and it’s a book now. The title is nonsense. It came to me in a dream. My twin elegantly described it as: “like Mad Max written by Mel Brooks.” So, a report on that later, along with Terminator etc.
    In other news, I’m in love with my iPad. I finally stepped into the 21st century. As much as I enjoy being a technologically advanced alien, I have yet to master the touch screen, and my cell phone is a relative dinosaur. I probably prefer sci-fi tech to real tech. Starships and so forth. It seems about 6 years ago, I fell out of a technological loop, and getting back has been a glorious return. My favorite iPad game is Animal Legends.
    Perhaps as a disability culture review, I’ll critique the accessibility of the iPad in general. Some of the features are less than intuitive. But, after dystopia. I also enjoy how easy the iPad  makes reading books and watching movies. I must’ve read about 4 comics and 5 sci-fi short stories. All creatively stimulating. For a media nut, I’m a full-on iPad enthusiast. I’m no techie, but I am a media nut. The iPad puts it all at my fingertips.
    Of course, I got gifts for my twin as well. Aside from his ASTOUNDING gift of a bound copy of Treole Horka! (which I may publish soon…we‘ll see.) I also got to watch Freakazoid which was my birthday gift to him. It’ll be off to California soon with him. So, I had to watch it while he was with me. Having grown up watching it, I figured he would appreciate it.
   Speaking of growing up, my twin and I recovered some 2nd grade stories we’d written. Although our grammar has much improved (and basic language command.) we were surprised at how similar our stories were in tone to what we write today. I was surprised what a good young author I was. I wrote about heroes and imitated TV and videogames; even attempting to add what we later deciphered as infomercials into my journal entries! (“Only $0% you pay!”; I didn‘t understand money back then.) Shades of the young mythologist/media critic I was to become.
   It is appropriate then, that on our birthday, we in a sense rediscovered ourselves. The old saying is true: There’s nothing new under the sun. “There are no unknowns. Only things temporarily hidden.” As Captain Kirk says. New worlds of media are waiting to be explored. In the solitude of that house, I have more time to myself, and a supporting family.
   By far, nothing pleases me more than this self-discovery. That my life has been one between worlds able-bodied and disabled, and of critiquing (and enjoying) different media. First, it was an electric typewriter for me, where I wrote things. Then, laptop. Is this the age of the iPad for me? No longer tethered physically to the computer, I might carry the iPad and go places. And of course, watch Dr. Who, Star Trek, and read books!
    Birthdays for me always symbolize a sense of rebirth…if I may be a mythologist again. But, this time as the iPad opens up new territory for me, I feel it quite stronger than ever before. I am always grateful to see my brothers who always have new things to talk about, and are a welcoming warm sight. ( Also, on my iBooks I downloaded an ethnographic study on families raising children with disabilities; should be fun. Home is the beginning of any cultural analysis, I think. Cultural patterns are set there first.)
   In conclusion, I have a lot to write about. Expect a lot more posts. We’ll begin the thematic of dystopia not with T2: Judgment Day, but with my own comedy novella…
TH!: Treole Horka!. and maybe later I’ll discuss disability and media as always. I have a lot of new “ammo“, so to speak! Hope you all have had a good Turkey Day; but stay tuned for Armageddon on Through Alien Eyes!

Monday, November 12, 2012



Warrior Champions:

“Men sometimes confess they love war because it puts them in touch with the experience of being alive. In going to the office every day, you don't get that experience, but suddenly, in war, you are ripped back into being alive. Life is pain; life is suffering; and life is horror -- but, by God, you are alive.”

- Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth, pg. 102

Followers of this blog know that I’ve been following VSA’s ReelAbilities Columbus. I was able to see three different movies, each dealing with a different perspectives on many disabilities. The first was an American film being shown at the Columbus Museum of Modern Art called Warrior Champions, about soldiers returning from Afghanistan and Iraq to compete for America in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. There are three main soldiers represented: Scott, Michelle, and Carlos. There were also others who didn’t make it in, and you see their journey as well, which is a hero’s journey in the true Campbellian sense: sacrificing yourself for a Greater Good.

The film begins with the soldiers explaining how they got injured. Most were from roadside bombs or IEDs. I was amazed here how casually the soldiers discussed their injuries. Melissa starts off by showing people her American flag-colored prothestic leg, and saying “There’s my blood.” Kortney, another hopeful explains that since he didn’t feel pain during the blast, he’s sure none of the others did either. That seemed to ease their pain a bit. Another veteran battles depression and says he can’t watch his own injury being reported on TV. So, Scott visits his house to try and get him out of depression. For Scott, sports is a way of giving back to his community.

So, in that way going to the Olympics is a way for him to go back to the war with his friends, and give back to his community. Every soldier mentions that they feel a comraderie with fellow soldiers that can’t be replicated, and they want to go back: “I fought for my country in Iraq, and now I’m gonna fight for it in Beijing.” says Scott. Scott is a wheelchair user, and throws the discus. I was amazed by the way he throws his whole body into the effort. As I mentioned, there were a few competitors who didn’t make it; Scott’s depressed friend is one of them. But, he found new freedom through sports.

Scott and Carlos end up training together. Like Scott, Carlos uses a wheelchair and is a veteran. But, unlike him, he is more focused on making the team than giving back to the community and teaching sports. This is their one opportunity to prove that they aren’t broken and give back to their community. Carlos and Scott train in a gym and sleep in a place that has little more than a fridge. Overall, the movie was a fine display of military culture and discipline as well as disability culture.

Then, after training, the soldiers are selected to go to Beijing, except for Kortney, a man with a prosthetic leg who didn’t make the long jump. But, Melissa goes with the two others. Their time in Beijing is marked by culture shock and exhaustion, but they politely greet passers-by and even tour the Great Wall. The depth of emotion in this movie is what stuck out to me. They’re not only soldiers, they are Olympians, and even though none of them win, nobody could take that away. The discussion afterwards was also an emotional rollercoaster: different vets, some disability professionals, and different coping mechanisms displayed; but all united by the common bond of disability. Though sometimes radically unique stories! That’s the kind of intercultural discourse I like to see.

NOTE: The opening speaker gave a speech on historical representations of disability in the media, claiming it was based on a “cure/kill” model of disability, and that disability culture needs to outgrow “overcoming”. I have never heard of this model in my research. I would’ve loved to talk about it. My model was based in part on Nietzsche’s Zarathustra, who taught that Man is something to overcome. Everyone must overcome themselves, in contrast. Can anyone say for certain where the cure/kill model comes from? Let me know.

Shameless: The ART of Disability

“We want people to understand that Bonnie Klein the filmmaker, is still Bonnie Klein the filmmaker.”

- Catherine Frazee, poet, discussing the title of Shameless: The ART of Disability

As a writer/artist myself, I really liked this movie. First, we meet Bonnie Klein, and she explains that even though she prefers to promote positive images of disability, she conscious of wanting to look good. We are then introduced to her friends who are disabled. Dave the comedian, who has a disfigured face, Catherine, with spinal atrophy. The dancer, Geoff, has a spinal cord injury. They begin by discussing Hollywood stereotypes of disability placed on a bingo card.

Now, there are some funny parts in this movie, (like Dave’s comedy act “The Church of 80% sincerity.) but the rest of the movie is a fairly deep discussion of how each artist interprets his or her own experience of disability through their art. This is fundamentally what I struggle with as well, as an artist. How much of our art is meant to be an experience of disability culture? How much of my writing abandons the notion of disability culture altogether? The answer I think is that the concept of culture is dependent on the environment surrounding it. For example, I was pleased to see an Episode of Star Trek TNG (“Ethics”) included, where Worf the Klingon officer, is injured and doesn’t want to live with a disability. Or several classics like “Heidi”, which were also criticized. Strong reminders that film is a product of its time. The movie then, follows an exploration of each of the artists individual lives and how their art represents their experience.

We start with David’s experience. His “Church of 80% Sincerity” comedy act which focuses on his face, and his impressions of movie monsters, with the ending of it being that you realize that maybe you’re (the non-disfigured) the monster. Dave goes a long way towards normalizing humor and disability, and liked that particularly.

He gets into a scuffle with an agent who says he shouldn’t focus the act on his face. But that raises the question: is the agent ignoring disability culture, or does Dave rely too much on it? Eventually, they work out the act in such a way that Dave’s humor and face both come through.

Then, we have Bonnie’s story. Bonnie was a feminist director who made “Not A Love Story”. After a stroke, her family supported her, and her husband stayed with her. The question for her was how to stay strong, and be supported by her family. Eventually, she finds that art, film, and dance are useful therapies; in much the same way I do. She found that her disabled friends led her back to film.

Catherine Frazee is a poet who talks about her doubts of getting involved in social activism, which I thought was particularly poignant since I experience these doubts as well. Who am I to represent my culture’s experience? The answer is of course that like Catherine, I make my art for myself, and it happens to speak to a collective. Afterwards, much like in Bonnie’s story, how she is supported by her partner.

Overall the movie is a good investigation into the roots of disability culture as a lived individual experience, and using art to convey that vs. preconceived notions of disability. It asks the right questions. It provides pointers in the ways that creativity can enrich the lives of those within the disabled community. I suppose one criticism I have would be that Bonnie Klein already has an established community of disabled friends, which may not be entirely representative of the greater community.

NOTE ON SPEAKERS: The speakers here were artists. A poet read some poems on oppression. I found the poems were well-meaning, if not representative of actual experience. As an ethnographer, which is really my field, I would never presume to write about Mohammad’s journey to Medina, or the French Revolution; I can’t say what that’s like. My idea would be: “Gee, let’s ask a Muslim. (or a Frenchman.) Let’s get some representatives of real experiences of those identities.” But, poetry allows us to lie imaginatively. Never let poets lie to you; especially about oppression lest we become blind to real experiences of it, or think of it as “noble”. Overcoming oppression, yes, that’s noble, not oppression itself.

That said, the rest of the panel could be said to be in many ways an answer to the previous speakers “cure/kill” conception of disability. The actors in the panel, one of which had no hands, emphasized that non-disabled actors should be given equal opportunity to play disabled parts; the previous speaker spoke against this. I was really struck by the variety of viewpoints that can be lumped under “disability theory”. The panel pointed out that non-disabled actors sometimes open opportunities for disabled ones, such as Dustin Hoffman’s method acting in Rain Man that won an Oscar and raised autism awareness. The previous “cure/kill” speaker especially mentioned Hoffman’s performance as de-legitimizing to real disabled actors. In general, I agree with the real actors, with the caveat that it represent real experience.


I was happy to receive a little gift bag in a raffle when I entered the theater. Thanks, Erin! That being said, this film from Belgium was a treat for me to watch. Not because of the subject matter, (bullying an autistic kid to death.) But, because it seemed to be representing real experience through film and fantasy. Indeed, we were later informed that it was based on a true story; changed to end happily. The film is through Ben’s perspective, as he struggles to understand “normal people” at school and in his life.

Ben seeks escape through a World of Warcraft-type computer game from the world he can’t understand. The game makes sense to him; even makes him a hero. All he sees in the normal world is “the jerk in the mirror.” In the game world, you can be anything, and there are clear goals. The film does a good job representing Ben’s perspective of the game which he transfers into the confusing normal world.

We see close-ups of parts of people’s faces which he can process. This gives you some idea of his disability and confusion understanding “normal people”. He is routinely picked on by a bully named Bogart and his cohort. One day, in what I assume is a Theology class, Ben X hears about Jesus’s last hours; and others’ mock it and throw spit wads at Ben. This culminates in Ben standing on a desk and forced to strip by the bullies after class, which in then posted all over the internet; his usual escape.

Ben’s mother seeks help for the bullying (which Ben doesn’t communicate.) and sees the usual professionals. However, since Ben is mostly non-verbal, there’s nothing they can do. Even though I’m not autistic, I felt deeply for Ben. I’m an escapist too; seeking though I do to represent real experience. I know how hard it can be to just live life when people around you always fight, and don’t understand. I also understand isolation…needing escape from reality.

Anyway, in another scene, the bullying intensifies. Bogart and his bully buddy attack Ben. They are then represented in Ben’s mind as trolls in-game. He tries to strike back with a crucifix-dagger he made in shop class. (Or as Ben insists, bought for 250 gold in-game.) But, they rob him of that and take his cell phone, tease him, spit in his mouth, and make him take LSD.(!) Ben misses his “always-there” bus. I also know the struggle to keep a schedule; and one little mishap can be a serious blow to dignity.

This, I think, highlights the importance of his loss of dignity. He has lost the drive to even care (or understand!) that this is bullying. High as a kite, Ben tearfully tells his mother that it only looks like he doesn’t understand feelings, but he tries.

Later, he devises his “endgame” and tries to get in contact with his in-game healer (A girl named Scarlite.) in-real-life. He goes to the train station, but can’t focus enough on her to say anything to her. Even worse, his bullies show up there, as they knew of his plans. So, Ben does not focus or say anything even as he sits right next to Scarlite. There goes a finger; an eye; the neck. She passes him by.

But, as he does in-game and in-real-life, he transfers her from his mind into parts of his real life that he can’t deal with. That’s part of his escapism; I was surprised no one in the audience got that, but more on the speakers later. The imaginary Scarlite takes him to a diner and tells him that he’s a hero and shouldn’t end his life. Instead, he fakes his death, taking inspiration from Jesus; and is in a sense reborn. Just like spawning and re-spawning in-game. Before beginning this new life, he brings his bullies to justice. Unfortunately, we were later told that in the true story, he committed suicide.

NOTES ON SPEAKERS: Unfortunately, after being exposed to these film images which closely mirror my own experiences of isolation, escapism (which was intensified by Ben being mostly non-verbal!) and bullying(!) I was disappointed that these topics were scarcely addressed, and I’m ashamed to say I didn’t speak out. The poet concentrated on how it was just a movie (Far-be-it for me to abase a poet on that exact same lie.) but it was meant to represent a real story, which happened. Bullying happens. Escapism happens. A few more suggested that Ben’s escapism was not only autism(!) but psychosis in an attempt to make disabled people look dangerous.(!) I’ll bet money these speakers were not gamers.

He who has no real experience of bullying, will not get this movie. Only a romantic notion called “oppression“. When I see bullies spit in a person’s mouth and force him to take LSD, I flashback to people laughing at me, trying to startle me, covering me with duct-tape, waving my underwear through a dorm hallway, leaving me in my own filth only to prove a point. That’s real oppression.

I was the weird kid who spoke the weird language (German, and this film also brought that back to me; the isolation of every now and then understanding Flemmish.), and kept to himself. (Star Trek, sci-fi, and my studies being my own escapism: at any moment, I could be a starship captain, a cyborg, or a 19th century German, where I was treated with respect.) In this instance, seeing no addressing of the practical use of escapism (Especially for a non-verbal autistic!) it made it hard to speak, because one memory of discrimination recalls all others. Bullying culture exists too. Also, from my knowledge of German, I think the title may be a play on words. It can refer to Ben’s screen name, or his loneliness. Ben X= bin nichts. I am nothing. If the Flemmish is closely related. Every now and then, I would catch a word or three. But, in many ways this film was a brilliant answer to the previous one, where a disabled community of friends is already established. Hostility reigns instead of hospitality, and that makes it more real to my experience; though I have an artist’s perspective, and function (in theory) socially “better” than Ben.

Closing Thoughts:

In conclusion, I was shocked at the variety of conflicting viewpoints on disability. I had never known so many existed! “Cure/Kill”, “Oppression”, (poetic as opposed to real.), “imposter’s syndrome”. These are new concepts to me, and some I must admit, completely foreign. While I possess little knowledge of these concepts, I do know films can allow us transcendence of disability theory; that is to become more than one was before through a viewing experience, regardless of preconceptions. That was what I ultimately take away from the ReelAbilities Film Fest.

Especially on Veterans’ Day, we need to remember that we have to strive to become more than what we appear to be. And in the words of JFK “We chose to do these things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” As regular readers know, I am wary of assigning any culture as Capital D.C. “Disability Culture”. It is rather an expression of the social environment in which it takes place. Warrior Champions for example was a fine expression of military/disability culture. Shameless, an artistic one. Ben X, on gaming and escapism. But, here I will finally make an exception. Not because it is easy, but because it is hard. I must challenge all people with disabilities to unite not on the basis of abilities, but on what makes us unique. Disability Culture must in a sense overcome itself. This is not to say that abilities don’t inform our identities. Certainly, they do. And this is not to diminish our individual efforts; they are our own tragedies and triumphs, and if we don’t record them, History will move on without us. But, what I’m saying is that if there is ever to be a Civil Rights type Disability Movement (of which, I am doubtful; Disability being to varied and growing up around different cultures. That is, in my opinion not being specifically a culture in itself.) we must decide once and for all what we value.

The criterion must not just be disability; it should also address real injustices. We cannot afford exclusion or romanticism. Able-bodied actors should be allowed to represent our experiences as well. If Johnny Depp wanted to get my message out to the world, I’d let him do it, and relive my experience. One experience is all we have. If we are to form a massive Disability Culture, we must to some extent sacrifice our individual theories, and focus on our limits as well as success. It would not be easy, because every group sees injustices in other ways, and we mustn’t become Pollyannas. Nor should we become exclusionary! And that, my friends, can be expressed in films, and the experiences relived. But, I struggle with my doubt: my impression is that everyone is so unique, that images such as film are the only way to express such conflicting views and feelings; around a central theme: Disability! In this respect, ReelAbilities is a start, but not an end, and I should like to see many more.



Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween 2012 and Other Updates

Halloween 2012 and Other Updates:

I went as Iron Man to the Halloween Party at OSU’s German House this year. There were many strange costumes and many who didn’t dress up at all. A gorilla, a wizard, a guy representing the color Plaid. Counting me, there were about 11 students. When I arrived, I was greeted by a guy dressed as Bill Nye, and a girl in a 1920s flapper dress was making spiced cider. Apparently, I was about an hour early. A Polish girl hastily threw on a Venom hoodie, and claimed it as her costume. We spoke in hybrid English-German about Venom and the symbiote after some wise guy cracked: “Who are you, Spider-Man?”

Lukas the German was there, dressed as a hippie in a tie-dye shirt and beret. Or at least he claimed it as a costume. I saw this going on all throughout the party’s early prep stage. Then, a Frenchman showed up, as Harry Potter or something. That’s when the hybrid German-English really started. I finally met some of the OSU Handyvan coordinators who came to practice their German, as did Ken the Frenchman, and I. Hybrid seemed to be the language of choice.

I eyed the tables full of candy and (after it got going) proceeded to dump candy into the Iron Man mask until someone got me a bag. I had two slices of pizza, and Lukas guided me to a table I could get under since I didn’t have a tray. I’d say it was a successful Halloween. I left when they started watching Nosferatu; a Handyvan picked me up, and Bill Nye made sure I got on. Overall, I felt most comfortable once it started going. But, it almost didn’t happen.

I had dressed into my costume at about 2:30pm, then when someone came to help around 5:15pm, she informed me that I should’ve called ahead of time, she’d been driving all day, and didn’t want to go anywhere. This upset me, and I told her that it was only 3 minutes away, and I didn’t dress up for nothing. So, I called the Handyvan. It’s a really good service. It just upsets me that on Halloween Night, someone could’ve stopped me because they didn’t feel like driving. C’est ma vie! But, I went anyway, because I didn’t dress up for nothing.

Also, speaking of a Marvel Halloween costume, I spent most last month on Netflix watching the old X-men cartoon series 1992-1996; and yes, Iron Man. (1994-1995) Since I already did a Marvel theme a while ago, my next posts will be on apocolyptic depictions of the future, some of which were shown in X-men. And to keep the sci-fi theme going, I will also include the Terminator series as well as George Orwell’s classic 1984, to add a book review. I will add others as I think of them. While sci-fi shows us the benefits of the man-machine relationship for which I am grateful, it showcases the horror of that relationship as well…I realize I’m behind a month for horror, but it’s what I’ve been doing.

As we start off Sci-fi Horror Week, I think I’ll review Terminator (the whole movie series) first, as it close to my heart. I’ll post reviews of the ReelAbilities Festival as I see the movies! Nov 3-7. For me, all my film tastes go back to disability, so it will be fun to see! Stay tuned!