Friday, 21 March 2008

6 - Not to be Trusted

Hello all and Happy Good Friday. Despite being irreligious (though mildly spiritual) I find some of the Catholic / Christian traditions in some sense worth pursuing. For example adding a cross onto something you eat on Good Friday. As I (vaguely) understand it, this has mainly manifested itself as the Hot Cross Bun. Now of course these are generally available all year round in selected heathen bakeries. But there is a definite and wonderful increase in the availability of them around Easter. Consequently, holding to the faith of my birth, I make a point of ensuring I have some of these available to me on Good Friday.

Yesterday I could only find a packet of 6. No matter, I thought, perhaps I will find someone to share them with. My plan was to cut them in half, toast them, add large dollops of cold goats milk butter and add raspberry jam to half of these as well. Sounds good? They were great! Too great… you see…

I have left South America for North America. The film Doomsday I spent last year making premiered last weekend. So I figured now would also be a good time to visit certain studios in the hope of alerting them to me and thus enticing them to offer me another film to have a wonderful time with (sometime in the near but not too near future please – October would be ideal). Obviously while I worked on the film I saw numerous versions of the edit including the final one. However this week in an excellent theatre with great sound I saw Doomsday for the first time as a final finished film. Notably I was seeing the film with the full soundtrack and final mix. This can make a huge difference to the feel of the film and I loved it. Ok I was very nervous in the beginning and I do think the opening quarter is not as strong as the rest but I was quickly reassured by the American audience’s animated response. You’ve got to love them, lots of clapping, cheering, laughs and even some comments. When ‘THE CAR’ was revealed, one guy who had laughed a lot, shouted, “Stop it, this is ridiculous”. Haha – yes it was and yes the film is but that’s just it – it’s not to be taken seriously, just as escapism and an adventure into a very vaguely plausible world of someone’s imagination. Anyway I chatted to some of the audience afterwards and they were delighted by the entertainment it had provided. Being a ‘most excellent severed heads movie’. Haha…

But back to the point - I am staying at Warwick’s apartment in Los Angeles. He’s out of town so I have full run of the pad. His place is one of two garden cottages behind another friend’s (Chris Campbell) house. The small yard outside my door gets lots of lovely sun and is the perfect place for a hot cross bun and a nice cup of tea.

I wreaked havoc on this pride of Hot Cross Buns. A fraction under 5 devoured in one sitting! That I managed to do this is either testament to my devotion to the traditions of my upbringing or to the fact that I simply cannot be trusted to exercise restraint in the face of lovely, yummy sugary bun-things.

And sharing them? Haha no chance – I even had to pretend I didn’t have any when the lovely lady from the other garden flat left to go who knows where? This was the first time I have ever seen her and I am suspicious about her choice of timing, maybe she was after the buns… I guess I am confessing this crime of selfish bun-devouring due to the latent feelings of Catholic guilt I am feeling! How appropriate!

See shot of aftermath... imagine me languishing, bloated alongside...

I know many weeks have passed since I last wrote - The Great Crabescape. If that was an act of altruism then this scoffing of the goodies must be the counterbalancing act of selfishness. Life after all does have its mountains and valleys and the dark and light should balance each other.

Many philosophies and gurus have talked of the ‘middle way’, Buddhism and Aristotle being quick examples. I have often thought about this and intuitively felt it to be right. I’d also thought that it would generally be easier to live a life along a middle road with various experiences counterbalancing each other to bring life into that kind of equilibrium.

However last night, a friend of a friend pointed something out about the middle way that just ran home a deeper truism regarding this. Perhaps it is obvious to others but I had not fully realised this… its HARD to stay in the middle. There are so many things that pull and push us towards either extreme. And it is very easy to slip off that middle line. One does not return to the middle line by countering with an extreme action on the other side. The ‘middle-way’ of life as they are suggesting should ‘always’ be along the middle line. This is not the same as a life apparently in balance by a series of wavering yet counterbalancing actions of various extremes. That would be a life of two extremes. Er… these are early thoughts… that I am sure I will comment further on sometime… I welcome your own comments (5 marks)

I know much is missing about the weeks between Crab Rescue and now. I will fill in some gaps notably Rio De Janeiro, Feb 29 and UFO hunting in Uruguay’s Land of the Dead but not quite yet. I wanted to put this piece out today for its relevance to the rest of the Easter weekend.

For consider this… if I can show no restraint regarding some hot cross buns then what does it say about my ability to follow a middle line? And worse, what chance do I stand on Easter Sunday when all the Easter Eggs of the world are fair game? If you were ever in the market to pray for someone – now would be the time to pray for me! Aarrrgghhhhh - beware little eggs… I come for thee…

But what’s this? My neighbour is returned – oh glory be – I can now attempt to correct the error of my ways! Perhaps I can offer to make her a very nice salad!

Haha… I had planned to leave it at that just pretending that I would do something about this… and mail this all to you about an hour ago… but then I really did start feeling a little guilty and decided I could toast the last hot cross bun and offer it to her. At least that would save me from eating it as well!

So I did…

And I offered it to her and she was so lovely about it too. Though I suspect a little suspicious at first… we then sat in the sun and chatted for a while. It was great – especially when Jefandi made it clear she had just eaten and thus I got to eat most of the hot cross bun anyway! Hehehe – it all works out well in the end. And I am ‘sorry’ I ever doubted her intention at the timing of her appearance in the morning. I’m also sad that I do not recall having met her last year though this was in the week immediately after Burning Man and I refuse to be held responsible for anything I don’t remember from then.

See attached shots 02 and 03. Incidentally there is a guaranteed bonus prize associated with shot 03 if you can tell me what the thing on my shirt is.

I can also reveal that I began this mail in a slightly more ‘valley-orientated’ headspace but the twin acts of spending time with you all and having a nice interaction with a cool neighbour have helped that immensely. The effect of an ‘interaction’ is obvious for someone on their own but the positive effect of the ‘creative writing’ is very interesting indeed. I’ve noticed it before and enjoy using it as a way to reach out to all you people that I miss the company of.

By mentioning Burning Man again too and through a couple of reminders from other people I never sent Part 3 of that story either. Of course I only ever half-wrote it and then was caught up in the act of living life so never got around to it. I had also thought that I could probably get away without writing it but I somehow feel it may be worth doing soon.

So it seems I have some self-assigned ‘homework’ though I will wait until I am in another ‘valley’ so the writing of it will make me appreciate my time in the ‘valley’. All of this can definitely not happen before my afternoon nap!

Much love

Doctor Lobster

Included a gratuitous image at the top of this page taken while I was surfing that to some degree can be used as evidence that I am indeed having a good time. There is something nice about the mood of it that I am in agreement with.

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