BOOK REVIEW: Life Itself by Roger Ebert

“Most people choose to write a blog. I need to.”

Fairly early on in my reading of film critic Roger Ebert’s memoir, Life Itself, I decided that, if I were ever to write my own autobiography – not that I necessarily would – it should be modeled on this book. Organized thematically, with an overarching, but not strict, chronology, using short chapters (55 in 420 pages).

But I’m probably not going to write mine because I doubt I could be so descriptive. Ebert remembers things from his childhood which would have eluded me writing about mine. More importantly, though, he writes with incredible honesty. The very first line encapsulates the sensation: “I was born inside the movie of my life.” Yet, though known as probably the premiere movie critic of his time, he got the job “out of a clear blue sky,” and without much thought that it would be his life’s work.

Since I’ve started following him on various movie review TV programs Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Life Itself by Roger Ebert”

Flashmob Fridays…and ME?

I feel like that guy who used to watch movies from 1915 through 1925, then went away from them for a score. Suddenly, he’s watching films that have SOUND! And COLOR!

There’s this comic book critic named Alan David Doane, who I’ve known since he used to come to FantaCo, the comic store I used to have something to do with for 8.5 years back in the 1980s. He asked me if I wanted to participate in something called Flashmob Fridays whereby “this batch of writers-about-comics…will converge in this space and weigh in with their thoughts on the comic chosen for review that week.” I actually participated once in the old iteration.

There are a lot of reasons NOT to do this. Continue reading “Flashmob Fridays…and ME?”

Christmas in July, self-generated

Generally, I’m just not that acquisitive. But I admit that getting stuff in the mail gave me almost as much of a rush as seeing the actual items themselves.

There was a period in late May and early June when I was really able to crank out blog posts. The mind was really engaged. There was a point that I actually was ahead 30 posts. Which was, I suppose, a good thing. Because when it started getting hot, my blogging started to cool off. I might write 2 posts in 10 days. So I would be down to 22 posts.

Now, I suppose I should explain that they were not the next 30 days out. They were for whatever special day struck my fancy. So I have written, weeks ago, posts for September 2 and 25, November 17, for example. But not necessarily for three days hence.

I think I hit a patch of melancholia. I can usually tell because I often buy stuff. For instance Continue reading “Christmas in July, self-generated”

October Ramblin’

Tegan and Johnny Bacardi have been blogging EIGHT years!

From a friend of a friend:

Today I don’t have to think about those who hear “terrorist” when I speak my faith.
Today I don’t have to think about men who don’t believe no means no.
Today I don’t have to think about how the world is made for people who move differently than I do.
Today I don’t have to think about whether I’m married, depending on what state I’m in.
Today I don’t have to think about how I’m going to hail a cab past midnight.
Today I don’t have to think about whether store security is tailing me.
Today I don’t have to think about the look on the face of the person about to sit next to me on a plane.
Today I don’t have to think about eyes going to my chest first.
Today I don’t have to think about what people might think if they knew the medicines I took.
Today I don’t have to think about getting kicked out of a mall when I kiss my beloved hello.
Today I don’t have to think about if it’s safe to hold my beloved’s hand.
Today I don’t have to think about whether I’m being pulled over for anything other than speeding.
Today I don’t have to think about being classified as one of “those people.”
Today I don’t have to think about making less than someone else for the same job at the same place.
Today I don’t have to think about the people who stare, or the people who pretend I don’t exist.
Today I don’t have to think about managing pain that never goes away.
Today I don’t have to think about whether a stranger’s opinion of me would change if I showed them a picture of who I love.
Today I don’t have to think about the chance a store salesmen will ignore me to help someone else.
Today I don’t have to think about the people who’d consider torching my house of prayer a patriotic act.
Today I don’t have to think about a pharmacist telling me his conscience keeps him from filling my prescription.
Today I don’t have to think about being asked if I’m bleeding when I’m just having a bad day.
Today I don’t have to think about whether the one drug that lets me live my life will be taken off the market.
Today I don’t have to think about the odds of getting jumped at the bar I like to go to.
Today I don’t have to think about “vote fraud” theater showing up at my poll station.
Today I don’t have to think about turning on the news to see people planning to burn my holy book. Continue reading “October Ramblin’”

Another Comic Book Show

I REALLY need to talk to Fred Hembeck, who I met in 1980. He met my friend Judy, who I’ve known since 1977, recently for the first time, and apparently, I was the subject of conversation.

It’s peculiar; I haven’t sold a comic book in 15 years, and haven’t had to order them as a retailer in over two decades. But I’m still fascinated by the market. Well, maybe it’s not fascination as much as horror. In my day, there were actually competitors in direct market comic distribution. Now, evidently, it’s either Diamond or nothing. I mean, there are other ways of getting comics, the way bookstores and newsstands get them, e.g., but these, I gather, may not be comparable for a variety of reasons, which someone who actually knows can address.

I do know that I’m glad I am not a retailer anymore. I read things such as this from ADD, and I get flashbacks: Continue reading “Another Comic Book Show”