Monthly Archives: June 2010

The state of things.

I’m not prone to sharing a lot of personal stuff online. With anonymity, it makes sense to seek support, make confessions and share aspirations with an audience. When you write under your own persona, you’re somewhat limited. Or, at least, I am.

So, when things aren’t going as well as I’d like, I tend to blog less; which is to say — not at all.

There’s plenty on my mind:

  1. I’m still wondering at least twice each day why Elton John would perform at Rush Limbaugh’s wedding. I know he was paid to appear, but by any measure, Limbaugh has a long and robust record of making not just homophobic statements, but pronouncements that are just plain hateful. I have little doubt that if Limbaugh could wave a wand, he’d make gay people disappear. As I said elsewhere, it’s like Lena Horne singing “Happy Birthday” to Lester Maddox in honor of his 60th.
  2. Having a devil of a time nailing down rehearsal spots and most importantly, a location for the planned July 10th shoot. I’ll work it out; I just need to put more shoe leather into it, which is challenging, since I’m feeling like crap.
  3. Even though I knew I wasn’t feeling well, I got up this morning and prepared a batch of Parker House Rolls. The dough’s rising now; I’ll punch it down once before forming the rolls and baking them. I was planning to bring them to a friend’s party, but I’m honestly not sure if I’m up to going.

Those are all the vexations I’ll share; the rest is just life stuff that’s personal, and therefore, mundane. I don’t read blogs to learn about someone’s emotional state how hammered they got, or learn about their SO issues. I’m much more interested in other peoples’ ideas, and not so much strangers’ feelings. (My friends are a different matter entirely) Don’t get me wrong; anyone who knows me wil affirm that I’m a rank sentimentalist and an unreconstructed romantic.

I just think the most personal blogs are akin to someone standing in front of a street-facing window and asking passers-by what they think of the rash on their ass.

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CSCS Judges’ feedback on “By Any Other Name”

The scores for the Top 100 finalists in the Creative Screenwriting Cyberspace Open were posted this morning. Here’s the feedback I received on the scene I had 24 hours to write, “By Any Other Name”:

The Star Chamber lobby poster

Kudos for originality here. A fresh, original take on the scene prompt and a nice use of setting. Well done. The writer did a great job of writing expository dialogue in a way that didn’t FEEL expository, that told us what we needed to know without being too blatant about it. Again, very nice! The only knocks against this scene are that the turn was a little predictable and the Godfather line (can you get me off the hook — for old times sake?) felt derivative where everything else had felt so original, giving the scene a bit of a sour note right at the end. Even so, a very strong scene. Nice job!

As they said on Monty Python, it’s a fair cop. I didn’t think it was necessarily my best work either, but I gave it a good shot considering the time restrictions. The scene received 94 points; here’s the breakdown:

Structure Dialogue Style Originality
22 23 24 25

Congratulations to the contest winners: Ian Murillo, Dries Coomans and Lisa Scott. They’ll have their scenes read by actors and videotaped; the winner will be determined by the number of votes received. I’m definitely interested in seeing these table readings, but I’m much more excited about shooting “Executive Action,” the first scene I submitted to the contest.

Actor auditions are this weekend, but I’m still nailing down a performance space in San Francisco. If you have a quiet room with chairs and a table, please let me know.

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Ball of Confusion.

It’s been a long day and there’s a lot on my mind.

The oil spill. That mural in Prescott. That retrograde racist GOP flack in South Carolina.

In Arizona, my father’s minister received a letter from the bishop asking her to lead her flock in a prayer for people negatively impacted by the “papers, please” law. As the law’s popular, she declined to open that particular can of worms. So my father, a lay speaker, asked the congregation to pray for those affected by SB 1070 and for greater understanding. I’m really proud of you, Dad.

As my father and I talked, I shared my concerns about the race-baiting that’s surfaced since Obama’s election. “I don’t think I’ve ever heard politicians speak like this,” I said.

“You haven’t,” he said. “To me, it sounds like 1961 or 1958. I haven’t heard politicians talk like this in your lifetime.”

As I said, it’s been a long day; but I had to express some anger and frustration somehow before pushing away for the rest of the evening. The clip below captures as much of the zeitgeist as I can take in from this vantage.


The Temptations, “The Smokey Robinson Show,” 12/18/70

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Filed under Media, Politics