Zombie Virus Or Just A Bad Flu

world war z cover

Pseudo-review: World War Z by Max Brooks

Note: To skip all the/my worst-writing, the actual pseudo-review of this book is just a scroll or two or thrice downwards.

And now…

Not sure if this makes since, dear worst-reader. So I appreciate you indulging me. Here’s a worst-writer fact for ya: I was never, ever afraid of horror movies as a kid. In fact, although the movie rating-system in my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant was not so heavily enforced at the time, I pretty much watched/saw any and every film I ever wanted to see–even before I was a teen. But my youthful rowdy behaviour is neither here nor there. For I am born and reared: #Americant, baby.

Horror films were everywhere by the late 1970s. In fact, in the whole Hollywood horror genre of my beloved & missed #Americant youth, there was nothing on the big screen–at least in the shape of monsters, goblins or ghosts, etc.–that scared me. I attribute this super-power to having faced the worst kind of childhood: loneliness and fatherlessness. Oh wait. Before I get-off on making this worst-post about my #Americant bastardisation…

By the time I could go to movies on my own, during my mid to late teens, albeit being dropped off by a parent here or there, I used to have a ball in the cinema teasing who ever I was with–especially a sister, a neighbour friend, or Chad–that older false cousin who even got me a fake ID that turned my fifteen years into eighteen. Anywho. The fun of horror movies was observing others either tremble or try not to tremble while watching The Omen, Dawn of the Dead, Halloween, etc. Of course. Later. Things got really fun for me when I started going to the movies on “dates”–as opposed to going with friendly neighbours. Scaring the “date” with a poke here or a poke there during whatever gore scene was a blast as she screamed and yelped and whined. Eventually, though. All that fun had to succumbed to cop a feel where, if timed correctly, lead to some serious second-base action–no matter what was on the big screen. But. Again. Nuff about me.

A girl went to a horror flick with me once and stayed the whole time on her knees in the row directly between my knees, mostly because she was terrified by whatever gore-fest I took her to watch. Did I trick her by saying I didn’t know it was a horror movie and thereby just happened to get the best BJ of my youthful life? Who knows. My worst-point is this: I never fell for the illusion-of-truth (verisimilitude) that was supposed to be “horror” in the realm of celluloid story telling, which wasn’t the case with other movie genres. And here’s the reason why.

I was never afeared of horror movies because fear of another kind beat it to the punch. Indeed. Blood and guts meant nothing compared to a good ol’fashion suspense-thriller. Hold a sec. Let me worst-splain. By my late teens I was an experienced hunter and fisherman. I also killed bats while cleaning tobacco barns. If you’ve never done such a thing, dear worst-reader, trust me when I say that not only killing bats is gross but hanging around where they hang around–and shit–is worst. I even put down old horses with a ten gauge shotgun once and then chainsawed off their legs in order to fit them in the back of a pick-up truck that would hall them off for glue production. With that in worst-mind, horror movies were just silly to me. Suspense movies, on the other hand, scared the living bee-gee-zees out of me. In fact, they scared me so much my mind would be boggled for days after watching one. They gave me nightmares, too. I experienced excessive sleep loss. I had #Americant anti-disney PTSD, don’t you know. And all that long before PTSD was a thing. Oh wait. Scratch that. I came of age during the end of Vietnam war. PTSD was alive and well then. It just had a different brand(ing), don’t you know. Anywho.

Fear of suspense movies, by-the-buy, made horror flicks a fun-fest for me. But put me in a huge claustrophobic movie house with a thriller with shit that could actually be real–as in real-life… Holy krapp, dear worst-reader. Yeah, I almost wet myself when a chick tricked me into going to a dollar showing of Rear Window. And so. Hence. Ever since I became a young intellectual, a pseudo-know-it-all, a wannabe well-read anti-automaton, I’ve always claimed to hate Alfred Hitchcock–even though the opposite is true. Seriously. Rear Window and Vertigo usually sent me to that place between my dates knees, low in the row of her cinema seat–to her satisfaction, of course, don’t you know.

By-the-buy. The movie that scared me the most and set the stage for preferring the horror-genre was The Poseidon Adventure. I saw it when I was, like, nine. Here a bit more on that. Indeed. To this day. I can’t help but think of (fat but luscious) Shelly Winters whenever I go swimming. I also will never board a cruise ship. In short, I’m a real chicken-$hit when it comes to suspense.

But here’s the thing, dear worst-reader. For most of my adult life, I kinda dug the movies. I mean. I preferred live theatre when available—especially since moving to #Eurowasteland. But a good movie here or there? That’s the ticket. Yet. Things changed in the last ten to fifteen years. I’ve kinda quit going to the movies. I’ve even already sickened of streaming services. Reason? Movie making has gone to $hit. I just can’t find a connection to any of it. It’s as though Hollywood, over the years, has over done it. Actually, that’s kind of a nice way to put it. What I really mean to say about Hollywood is this. As I’ve gotten older, seen too many movies, I think they’ve simply run out of creativity.

Still. Some stuff intrigued me. Like the whole horror sub-genre known as Zombies. WTF is up with Zombies? I mean. Come on. Even though I’ve long since grown out of my horror movie fascination, and certainly don’t need to cop-a-feel anymore, I can’t help but be curious. Thank goodness for the various clips and shorts available by the Interwebnets, eh. So I couldn’t help but notice, over the years, how people are eating up the Zombie genre. I mean. There are Zombie movies, Zombie comedies, Zombie walks (yes, as in, go for a walk dressed as a Zombie), and various Zombie TV shows.

Why?

Thanks for asking, dear worst-reader. Here’s worst-writer’s theory about the Zombie craze.

First. The zombie genre is the first purely American aka Hollywood horror creation. I mean. Get this. Ghost stories, the undead, monsters, etc., have a long history in the mind-catacombs of #Eurowasteland and corresponding literature. But until the Zombie thing came along, America had nothing. Luckily the Zombie thing fits a particular mentality, which means Hollywood has probably found the money-recipe that appeals to so many and they’ve been running (away) with it ever since. Good for them, eh.

Second(1). How has the horror genre lasted so long? Horror movies of my youth were an answer to the suspense movies that would eventually scare the bee-gee-zees out of me. Yet. For the last fifty or so years, it doesn’t feel like suspense movies have, for lack of better cinematic vocabulary, moved on (like the diversification of the horror genre). I suppose I could say the same thing about other genres, aka Dramas, Sci-fi, Comic (movies based on comics–aghast!) But horror? These things have gone full evolution (or is it devolution?) I mean. The first horror movie to ever tickle my bee-gee-zees button (as in scare me) was Saw. Of course, the blood and guts didn’t scare me from that film. For, don’t you know, dear worst-reader, no horror movie director has ever had to rid a local barn of bats. And so. Suspense scared me. Under other economic and social circumstances, a movie like Saw might have even driven me mad. Btw. I should also note that I tried to watch other Saw movies. Since they are all just redundant, pseudo-repeats of the first, those initial bee-gee-zee scares were quickly wiped away. Again. IMHO Hollywood has a serious creativity problem. Oh. Wait.

But I’m off worst-subject again. Stop the presses. Rewind. Start again.

Second(2). To worst-writer, the success of the Zombie genre over the years is what I like to call a two way mirror. A two way mirror is where/when people look at the mirror, they know it’s a mirror, they know that someone on the other side is looking back at them, but they don’t care because, well, it’s still just a mirror image and we all know that a mirror image isn’t necessarily real. And so. The Zombie genre seems to be an ever flowing revenue stream for Hollywood because it doesn’t really need much creativity to keep turning out more and more product–it just needs to point that mirror. It needs to make sure that the zombies never really, actually, literally, show #Americants the other side of their two-way.

But I die-gress.

The first zombie movie I saw was 1978’s Dawn of the Dead. It has remained in my mind as the quintessential #Americant horror movie. Reason? It was set in a shopping mall. It is about shoppers in that shopping mall–all of whom are afraid for their lives. What better imagery is there than to show reality in a mirror, fill it with gore, add a bunch of weaponry and racism, and don’t forget sexual tension but no nudity, and there you have it. George Romero is a fcuking genius. Of course. Dawn of the Dead was Romero’s second Zombie movie. The first having been shot ten years prior to Dawn. I think it took me twenty years before seeing his first one–but it wasn’t as good as Dawn. Anywho.

To worst-writer, the Zombie genre is perfect for current #Americant misconstrued political and social ideals, especially for those who cling to such ideals. The essence of the #Americant fail-upward-ness that is the greed $hitshow cannot function unless misconstrued individualism reeks of spite, bigotry, hate–and the desire/need to see the death of what is in the mirror. It is a very binary thing, don’t you know. Not unlike the so-called bipartisan pseudo-governance, aka politics, that is red and blue states. It’s also the perfect mismatch for #Americant never facing its demons, especially the demon of slavery, rich v. poor, winner-take-all and all the losers left behind, or who and whatever else is in that mirror. And so. To bring things back around… The Zombie genre is perfect for audiences to avoid the mirror that is #Americant life–i.e. avoid reality. Hence, consumerism does have a price when mixed with too much Mikey Mouse. Eh?

Which brings me to the only Zombie movie that ever, kinda, moved me–above and beyond the thrills of horror. It happened on a flight across the Atlantic to visit Mom a few years back. Although I had planned to read and do some worst-writing on the flight, I scanned through the movie offering and there was Brad Pitt’s Zombie film. Sure, I thought. I can kill two hours out of the eight to watch this film. Besides. I had heard about the film. I had read about its production problems. There was also something out there in the ether about the book it was based on. And so. A few years later. Last week to be exact. I caught World War Z on Amazon Prime–again. I thought: yeah, I should re-watch this on account I missed a few things here and there while watching it on a plane with that horrific little backseat screen and awful audio. Also. I’ve since heard a few more things about the book–on account of all this/that about viruses. So I watched the movie again. I let it percolate through my mind that night. The next morning, last Thursday, I discovered that Amazon was offering the e-book of World War Z by Max Brooks for something like three fcuking Euros. I finished the book Easter Sunday morning, 2020.

Pseudo-review of World War Z by Max Brooks.

Let me begin with the negative.

It makes no sense to me why such a great writer/thinker would subject himself to writing this book. Did Max Brooks get up one day and think to himself: how the heck can I sell my compulsion? Oh. Hey. I’ll write about Americans–as Zombies. I’ll show them the mirror they refuse to look at–but instead dance around with guns and violence and war and false-happy. But then some publishing big shot called him up–surely a friend or foe of his father (the grand Mel Brooks) and said: just do it, dude. Just write about the brainlessness of Americans and… with that name of yours… we’ll sell it.

Let me end with the positive.

Max Brooks nails it. This has to be one of the best reinterpretations (or is it regurgitation) of #Americant story telling–ever. Wait. Is this a first? Not sure. From the get-go, the first third of the book kept me very interested. The second third of the book trailed along the first. The last third of the book is a bit winded (i.e. weak) but I was so glad that the whole thing didn’t degrade into anything like the Hollywood mess that was the movie, I was happy to read every word to the end. And on that note… The thing from the mediocre Brad Pitt movie that interested me was how the fight against Zombies was not unlike the fight against an enemy within. It was, eventually, my hope that the book would double down on the enemy-within–and it did–whereas the movie screwed the pooch. But let’s move on.

A chronicle of a world war against Zombies based on interviews with participants? Again. Brilliant. And how Brooks holds it all together with some seriously good writing. He even threads here or there a few snipes of social and political reality, i.e. addressing man’s non-sensical, if not whimsical, allowance/enabling of so much gluttonous behaviour–that can only result in Zombies. I mean. What a silly genre, really, for so much social commentary–hidden or not (in the back of that two-way mirror). Zombies. Yet the author maintains a level of literary bent that can even interest the best of the best of us pseudo-intellectual wannabes, making the undead not only entertaining but important. Good for you, Max! Us failed/worst writers salute you.

Rant on.

-T

“Heroes”

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Came across a list (link below) the other worst-day, dear worst-reader. The only question I had after reviewing the list–yet another Bowie best-of list, like all the others, don’t you know–was whether or not I had all the songs–especially since I don’t use music subscription services. Turns out I have forty of the fifty and I’ve been contemplating a favorites list for a while so this is kind of a kicker, eh. Also. The reason I’m missing ten of the list is because, well, I still haven’t purchased Bowie’s last album and my collection is also missing stuff like Black Tie White Noise and London Boy. Of course, another reason for posting this info here is simply because my all-time favorite song is at #5 which caused me to gasp while reading it. WTF! “Heroes” is forever the bomb, baby–easily my all-time fav Bowie tune. I mean, I would have accepted it at two or three–but not five! Which begs the question, what about Fame! Oh my.

Rant on.

-T

PS The reason I haven’t purchased Bowie’s last album is because, well, it would mean I have to face reality. I’m not good at that sort of thing. I mean. I’ve always known I’d get to it and I have most of his music anywho in my collection and… And so. Yeah, maybe it’s time. To face. Reality.

Link:

Cerebral Rock

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Rush collection

Three bands by the late 70s that rocked my world:

  • Led Zeppelin
  • Budgie
  • Rush

With the passing of Neil Pert I can’t help but recall my first reaction to the 1976 album 2112 which I listened to on a hand-me-down plastic mono record player in my suburban hell bedroom. What the hell are they making music about, I said, after playing side-one over and over and over. Here’s a summary of the song, dear worst-reader. By-the-buy, the lyrics of this song–or is it anthem–were written by Pert.

“2112” tells a story set in the city of Megadon in the year 2112 where individualism and creativity are outlawed, with the population controlled by a cabal of malevolent Priests who reside in the Temples of Syrinx. A galaxy-wide war resulted in the planets forcefully joining the Solar Federation (symbolised by the “Red Star”). By 2112, the world is controlled by the priests who take orders from giant banks of computers inside the temple. Music is unknown in this world absent of creativity and individuality, but in “Discovery”, a nameless man finds a beaten guitar inside a cave and rediscovers the lost art of music. In “Presentation”, the man takes the guitar to the priests at the temple, who say, “Yes, we know, it’s nothing new; it’s just a waste of time”, and then proceed angrily to destroy it and banish him. Next, in “Oracle: The Dream”, the man dreams of a new planet, established at the same time as the Solar Federation, where creative people live. He awakens, depressed that music is part of such a civilization and that he can never be part of it, and commits suicide, in “Soliloquy”, originally titled “Soliloquy of the Soul”. Another planetary war begins in “Grand Finale”, originally named “Denouement”, resulting in the ambiguous spoken ending: “Attention all planets of the Solar Federation: We have assumed control”. (Source: Wiki)

Of all the bands I listened to growing up, Rush is the only band that made me sit down and contemplate not just the music but what the heck were they going on about.  Compared to Zeppelin, Rush was a creative power that would take me years to truly comprehend. That is, where Zeppelin covered a lot of their famous tracks, Rush wrote and composed every damn story-be-told song. When I saw Rush in concert the first time, from the only nose-bleed seats I could afford, Neil Pert looked like an octopus wrapped inside a monstrous drum set. You could barely see the mans head. But you could see those arms, multiple, many arms, and sticks, all flaring around making magic sound galore. Indeed. A band to make one think. So I guess I’ll continue choking-up when listening to Tom Sawyer or One Little Victory, etc. Btw, the intro to One Little Victory still boggles my mind.

neil pert drum set

As far as that fantasy I’ve had for years, I guess I’ll never run into Neil Pert while riding a motorcycle cross country, which I’ve heard was his preferred mode of travel to concerts. Oh well. There’s still all those songs to listen to, to think about, to comprehend.

RIP Neil Pert.

Rant and rock on.

-T

Links:

How To Get THE Message To Fly

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Screenshot from Wiki page

In a whirlwind, dear worst-reader, It all started with the music video This is America. Have to admit, it did take a few viewings of the vid for me to get it. Well, get it as far as worst-writer can get it. You know, this is about politics as much as it’s about money making musical genius. As you may or mayn’t know, I’m kind of an old school liberal. You know, I be the kind that thinks he can think all things whatnot but ultimately, especially when it comes to politics, my whatnot is about living and let live. When I’m critical of politics, it’s because there are so many out there that can’t live and let live. In fact, things have gotten so bad, those that can’t live and let live, have to be called out for going even further by living on the backs of others. Such a creed, don’t you know, goes against pretty much everything that my beloved & missed #Americant is all about today. Yeah, living on the backs of others. But that’s neither here nor there.

The thing that rocked me about This is America is the message(s) embedded within it. I won’t go into the details of THE message here. That sort of thing is available all over the #Interwebnets. But I will say this: Childish Gambino is a friggin’ genius. Boy am I curious what’s gonna come out of him in the future–or will he fade as THE message fades. For as we all know, what’s right, righteous and good fades quickly to what is ugly, ugly, ugly and full of money, money, money and #Trump. And so…

A few hours ago I viewed a continuation of THE message. I watched Guava Island. Once again I was a bit perturbed with where this artist was going. Filmed in Cuba and co-staring Rihanna, it seems that Childish Gambino (I love that name) found a way to repackage and resubmit THE message in the form of a (kind of) extended music video but encased in a wondrous narrative mini-movie of love, culture and THE message. In short, #Americants have an alternative. But will they get the message?

Good luck suckers.

Rant on.

T

Doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo (heart

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Woke up with a speck of Stones clinging in my heart this morning. Did I think it was a heart attack? No. But my heart hums every now and then–in the wrong musical direction. Also. The stirring had something to do with the wrong angle (of attack) from that last glass of wine last night. I have to stop drinking from the corner of the left side of my face. But that’s all neither here nor there–cause the pills don’t help either. And so. I took a bike ride after coffee this morning and when I returned my heart told me once again to nap. The problem is, I’m not listening to my heart enough these days. Either that or its speaking the wrong language. It wasn’t telling me to nap but instead to listen to this Stones song. So I did. And then I listened to the whole album and drank two glasses of oat-milk latte. Now there.

Rant on.

-T

Why We Need TV Brits To Brexit #Americant

american-flag-wwe

On a role with Brexit krapp this morning, dear worst-reader. Bare with me.

You know, dear worst-reader, if you ain’t worst-writer, it’s probably best you don’t talk about things you don’t understand. Take for example John Olivers recent attempt at taking down #Americant’s WWE compulsion by… get this… wait for it … wrastlers are exploited employees (sarcasm off). Of all the $hit that comes out of Oliver, this one really threw me for a loop. Is he this clueless as a Brit living in #Americant? Here’s a direct link to Oliver’s video–and don’t forget the link below, too. By-the-buy, was I bored of the bitch & moanin from WRASTLERS in Oliver’s video? Darn tootin’ I was. But did any of it warrant the anger I was feeling at how the producers of this show, who I’m sure are #Americants, never connected what was/is the real issue about the WWE? In other worst-words: fcuk the wrastlers. If a bunch of testosterone-laden idiots want to hump around with each other in the name of stupid-entertainment-galore, who gives a $hit? Same goes for the NFL, btw, which Oliver attempts to associate with wrastlers. Oh. Wait. Now that a generation of brainless, mindless, free-to-be-stupid entertainment jerk-offs that are the crux of #Americant are paying the piper for not just getting old but self abuse, the rest of us are supposed to take a stand to help comfort their ugly demise? Fcuk that! Look what these pseudo wannabe Roman gladiator a$$holes have left behind. Of course, as calloused as I can be, it’s nothing compared to what Oliver really should have addressed and obviously missed. For you know, dear worst-reader, WWE has played an integral role in not only the bat$hittery of #Trumpism but also the coming-out of the true face of my beloved & missed #Americant post Reagan conservatism, namely: money-God supremacy, the tea-party and, let’s never forget, the land of THE FREED TO BE STUPID. Indeed. WWE, NFL, most of #Americant TV, all of them should be called out first and foremost for turning what was a once a great experiment of democracy and cultural and science and achievement into a game-$hitshow of meritless greed galore. All who are part of that should pay the piper dearly!

Rant on.

-T

via John Oliver Urges Wrestling Fans To Hold Vince McMahon Accountable | Crooks and Liars

How A Vid Interrupted My Constitutional

Trying to get away from posting videos here from that you-know-who video website. Reason? I don’t like WordPress’ use of such links and its mis-direct embedding of the video. Seriously. I’d rather that just the link appeared. Yet in this particular case, I can’t help myself but enjoy what WP conjures. And by-the-buy, while on the $hitter the other morning, reading through the newz on my phone, I came across this video. It is a video, indeed, dear worst-reader, that wakes up that part of me that refuses to get old. (Even though I welcome ageing as a whole process and precursor and prep-show to the ultimate human task: death.) This video that is nothing but a pop-song nightmare is so stunningly beautiful that my first thought was: why do men exist? This is why! I don’t know if it’s the same look these two women have, the same dress (indeed the shades they wear don’t matter) or the art of stylish singing. But the entirety of these un-identical twins performing for money, money, money, etc. as they do, (for that is all a Grammy award is, or?) reminded me of why I get-it-on with women in the first place. It wasn’t to have relations, bear my soul, concoct sympathy by wanting to be the other half of something un-whole (as a human beings are), no! It was because of the passion and lust and physicality I felt when ever a woman I was attracted to came near, nearer, inside me. For the fulfilment of humanity is not procreation, dear worst-reader. No. It is that feeling you get just before you own her or she owns you and suddenly you realise… what a soul is.

Stunning. Stunning. Stunning.

Rant on.

-T

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