austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

A little thing called confidence

Since I'm still feeling rather blah I decided to stay home instead of going to the office and sulking at the computer there. This choice let me catch Clambake, probably my favorite Elvis movie, on Turner Classic Movies. (Admittedly, I don't have strong feelings about most of them.) You don't expect these movies to feature advanced polymers in any context. Later was Lady in the Lake, an intriguing Philip Marlowe detective thriller starring Robert Montgomery as Marlowe ... filmed in first-person. Apart from glances at mirrors you don't see Montgomery, and all manner of neat camera tricks are used so that the cuts between camera takes aren't so obvious. This belatedly makes sense of an entertaining Joe Doakes short in which Joe (played by George O'Hanlon, the voice of George Jetson) imagines himself to be a private eye, and a similar odd camera trick is used.

Then Discovery Channel had a nice little documentary about Boeing and its testbed 367-80 jet aircraft, which became -- at just the investment of all the money Boeing ever made or ever hoped to make -- the 707, and earned the company very nearly enough to cover all the money spent in the process of building it, with a profit after-taxes of about one shilling.

Alarmingly, Kids Central has started up a ``Retro Telly'' block in the afternoon, showing classic old-time cartoons like Garfield and Friends. I protest strongly applying the word ``Retro'' to any TV show which debuted after I entered high school. The show included, in the US Acres segment, a nifty Dragnet parody (``6:33 pm. We interrogated a horse for an hour before realizing horses can't talk. 6:33 pm. We break for lunch. 6:33 pm. I notice my watch is broken.'') It got me to marvel about how I'd never seen an unfunny Dragnet parody, and started to wonder if that was due to the richness of the source material, when I remembered Dan Aykroyd's late-80s movie.

Trivia: The British burnt the White House the night of 24 August 1814. Source: The March of Democracy, James Truslow Adams.

Currently Reading: The Assassination of Lincoln: History and Myth, Lloyd Lewis.


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