Late Night Snacks & Other Misgivings

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco. Misty . LJ Frank, Photographer

by LJ Frank

I drove across the bridge and settled in for the evening at the hotel. What else was there to do? I pressed down on the remote button.

Click: Science Fiction: Humans are seen grazing among sheep that are watching them from the pasture’s edge. A narrator’s voice notes upon reflection that pastures are now for human grazing and talks about the sacrificial lambs have become too educated and a bit apprehensive about their future. What next? he asks.

Click. Food: Spectators cheer from a mezzanine looking towards the event unfolding before their eyes. The place had an theatrical atmosphere. It could have been a Hospital Operating Room or perhaps a theater or a sports arena. The idea behind the event has ancient roots. Except the contestants unlike Greeks, Romans and earlier world cultural games are not naked. They are clothed in trendy fashion. The grins, laughter, and voyeurism feels familiar.  The event is considered safe competition with money at stake. Minimal injuries are incurred except to human pride and those unfortunate beasts, fowl, marine species, and other potentially edible creatures with central nervous systems too difficult to classify. They die from a bullet, or a knife or merely boiled alive. Herbs and varied spices are added to subdue the animal’s natural fragrance and taste while adding flavor. In a caption at the bottom of the screen the message states that all left over food will be sent to the winner’s favorite charity along with a check.

Announcer: Chefs! You have five minutes remaining to finish preparing the desert and remember, Key Lime Is not an island.

Click. I get this uncanny feeling that I am trapped and getting sucked into something I hadn’t planned on. In this instance the actor, Willem Dafoe, the protagonist is a classy thief of high-end art and is trapped Inside a luxury penthouse supposedly in Manhattan, New York City.  There appears to be no way out after the alarm system turns on. Lockdown. No escape. Things go crazy like a world out of control until he appears to escape in the final scene, or did he? Will there be a sequel? Will the protagonist be reincarnated or resurrected to lead a higher level of existence?  Break a leg in the theater has new meaning here. Out of destruction comes creation is written on a wall.

Click.  A detective finds that another detective he has been sleeping with is not the woman he originally thought he was having an affair with, rather she’s someone else altogether. The ending is open ended. The sound of a familiar jazz piece is played on a saxophone in the background. I enjoy existential films where nothing is resolved.

Click. A Zen Buddhist monk suggests that a leader try not to control people. Give them space to explore within boundaries. And the leader can watch but not control, as he or she will be in control in the larger sense.

Click. A man and woman are playing a game of chess. They look into each other’s eyes. Sexual tension. He smiles. She smiles in turn. Their finger’s touch. Commercial break.

Click. Numerical figures and esoteric words are written in chalk on a city sidewalk. It starts to rain.

Click. The camera follows a man in an art museum. He stops. Looks to his right at an abstract painting.  He takes a deep sigh. There’s a sound of violinists. It’s Torelli’s Concerto in G Minor Op 8 No 6.

Click. He is a part-time expert financial investor as well as a part-time minister that suggests to the viewer that they too can be wealthy. Send in money for my book on how to build your personal wealth. Check, Visa, or Money Order is preferable in order for you to receive my book on becoming a millionaire in five easy steps.

I turned off the television. Poured a glass of wine. And listened to some music.