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2001-06-06 - 1:36 a.m.

Screen tests

This is entry No. 241
To go until the Dano 250th Entry Celebration: 8

I can say that all the screens I encountered today seemed to be in fine working order. Well, except for when I was in the kitchen and said, "Where did this bug come from" and realized it was likely the screen with a hole in it.

But there was the large screen at the movie theater, where I went with my sister just home yesterday afternoon from her 10-day post-graduation jaunt around France with five other post-grad French majors. Against several "recommendations," we saw Pearl Harbor. Yes, I must say, honestly, it blew. I knew it had blowing potential, but I wanted to see it nonetheless. I wanted to see the blowing firsthand. I knew there was a contrived hokey love story, but I wanted to get through that to see the attack sequence. I knew there were big-name actors in small parts, but I wanted there to be more Cuba Gooding Jr. I mean, is that guy ever going to do a project for Michael Bay again?

See, here were the problems, as I saw them (this serves as the spoiler alert. Those interested in anything else I have to say not dealing with the movie can slide down below the line break.): How much more predictable could it be? I mean, I was kicking myself for not realizing that Betty was going to die. I thought it would be Red, but I forgot that there had to be a nurse who died, and she was the obvious one she's the only one (other than Evelyn) we were really introduced to. ... I'd seen commercials and previews, so I knew Ben Affleck wasn't dead after crashing into the ocean. ... And the minute he said he wanted Danny to tell Evelyn he was dead, I knew it meant sex on the parachutes for the two of them. ... The pregnancy? Called that. Evelyn ending up with the guy she did in the end? Nailed it. The kid's name? HA! Next question, please. ... I would not have missed Alec Baldwin had his character died just before his first scene. ... I went to the movie because I wanted to judge it for myself. I love historical movies or, I should say, even fictional movies set around historical events. I thoroughly enjoyed the attack sequence, which showed not just the fleet on Battleship Row in the harbor, but also the air bases around the island and the nurses' point of view. But this movie would've been so much more enjoyable, so much better, had it been more about the historical aspects, the behind-the-scenes stuff they don't teach in the history books. If it had been about the characters played by Dan Akroyd and Jon Voigt (you know, FDR) and Cuba Gooding Jr., it would've been Oscar-worthy. If it had focused on the U.S.-Japan peace talks, the knowledge America had of an attack but not knowing where, then it would've been a film.

Instead it was what I'd been told by my friend Will in the movie biz when I first heard of the flick: It's Titanic meets Saving Private Ryan. And just as it sometimes happens in real life between two independently spectacular parties, they did not get along well when introduced.


Enough of that.

Hey, it's past midnight. It's June 6: D-Day. They're dedicating the national memorial in a small Virginia town later this morning.

Before the movie, I stumbled across back-to-back episodes of The Wonder Years on TNN and enjoyed the trials Kevin went through when he joined the soccer team and they got their collective butts kicked 19-0. But that's where he met Chuck. And I watched Jack growl and try to reconnect with Karen on his 43rd birthday, since he clearly did not approve of her living and sleeping with Ross Gellar; er, um, David Schwimmer.

Next it was some time in front of the smaller screen this here computer for a little fun with images. Then after the movie, it was on to Val's for a couple of drinks with Dave and Jess (the sister) while watching the Mets trounce the Phillies and various other games on the dozen flickering screens in the bar.

Back home, I found that the 10 p.m. special repeat of Ed was my favoritest episode ever, the one where Warren reads Walden and Kevin Pollack bowls naked and Ed runs up "Mt. Precipice" or some mountain in northern New Jersey and finds Warren there shackin' up with Donna. (Also read in the teen section of my paper that a junior at my former high school plays the popular jock who's got the popular girl, Jessica Martell.).

After Ed it was over to HBO where I wondered why when they show us what Carrie Bradshaw is typing on her computer we only see one line of type, with no other lines above or below it. And in the second episode of the season of Sex And The City I heard "vagina" more times in a half hour than ever before.

Finally, despite a sense of tiredness coming over me, I felt drawn in by the opening to Six Feet Under and managed to rally for the hour of the premire of yet another intriguing, clever original HBO program. I like how it's a dark comedy, like The Sopranos. It was an interesting contrast, actually, coming on after the lighter Sex.

Satisfied that the television screen had done its duty, I retired to my room and this small screen before me yet again.


Actually, I must say, I'm a little disappointed with the turn the preparations for the Dano 250th Entry Celebration have taken. Honestly, I don't know where I came up with the idea to have a "contest" to see who I'd take as my "date." I mean, duh, it's not a real celebration. It's not a real date. And yet some still played along and played nice.

But I'd noticed, even before Leah pointed it out, that it was getting a little more cutthroat. That's not what I wanted, people. I wanted a few (ideally, several ... dozen) women to act like they were competing over me not fighting, just competing. That's not normally like me, but that's where this little charade took me. And I realized early on that I wouldn't be able to pick one, so I'd cop out and go the Robert Palmer Route and take y'all. (The limo's paid for, HAC's got that squared away.) So I do appreciate all your efforts (the Barenaked Ladies lyrics were worth a horde of points, El), and I'm flattered, but I guess it wasn't right to force the competition on you.

But that doesn't mean it won't be fun! I've still got scores of posts to go through to pool the Best of Dano by Entry No. 250, and I'd be up for a little chat after-party as well.

And I know who's got the tentacles. They can be hidden under clothes.

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