JSDC
XVIII. Build< Previous Chapter | Next Chapter >

The Turn of the Screw 

Ah, writing, acting, sportsÖ Why must all of my endeavors be the sort that can easily drive one mad?

I am so near to finishing my current screenplay that I can almost touch the hot sun of success and burn to death in happiness, yet, the next moment I find myself gazing up at the prize from far, far below. Back on Earth. Looking at all the problems in the narrative and exposition and seeing that the solutions are further away than the sky itself.

My pal Robert cheered me by explaining, ďItís like a screw. It takes a little doing to get it started, then it gets easier for a while, but those last few turns, the ones that really make it tight, are the hardest.Ē* Sometimes, although you may already know something, it helps to have confirmation.

Still, it has been a hard journey. How many more hours can I toy and tweak with the Garden State Soundtrack playing in the background? This story is dear to me. I have tied my soul to every tree in the wood of the world Iíve created. This story must not fail.

Sometimes, when Iím typing, I look up at the ceiling and not the screen. Iím a very good typist, so the words never turn out to be anything accidentally interesting. I guess itís sort of a weird freedomÖ To not worry about how it looks while doing. I used this technique on this very entry and did not edit it one bit. It probably shows, but I donít care.

*Not so much his exact words but instead how I remember them.

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Questions of Progress 

State your purpose.

Weíve been here before.

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A Ruse of Fiction 

I still have a cold and am staying indoors, so today I read The Da Vinci CodeÖ

Warning: This entry contains spoilers. All of the below is examined in the spirit of academic, comparative mythology and is in no way a comment on anyone elseís religious beliefs (including my own).

I was not impressed. For anyone who knows anything about the Illuminati Conspiracy Theories, which involve the Merovingians, the Stone Masons, King Dagobert and so on, this book is a remedial read. Large chunks of exposition regarding these conspiracy theories are embedded in the text. All of this exposition is merely a simplified version of mythological research that I have already completed during my own writing adventures. Thus, I personally was bored.

Author Dan Brownís ability to hide so much exposition in a thriller is the only thing I could possibly admire. (And I donít.) His writing is obvious and the voice/tone/style is weak. Just enough to register. Not enough to actually be interesting and therefore not as palatable to the masses.

I also found the main characters to be vanilla. The most interesting characters are all dead by the time the story gets going and the ending is a predictable family-connection-guy-gets-the-girl sob. I identified most with a bore of a supporting, evil character who was murdered with peanuts due to a severe allergy. I think that part took all of two lines.

I am far from expert at codes and riddles, (Iím still on level three of Zest and sometimes canít solve the riddles in The Hobbit), but I found the majority of the riddles and codes in the book easy to solve. I was ahead of the story. Boring. Admittedly, this could be due to the amount of mythological research I have completed and that I know the tricks to setting-up important bits that come into play during a story. But, if thatís the case, then the character who wrote the riddles should have made them harder. If a young girl in California can solve the location of the Holy Grail from the Grandmaster of the Priory of Sionís clues then Iím thinking the story doesnít make sense in the first place.

Basically, The Da Vinci Code is Illuminati 101 with a clock attached.

Meaning that Dan Brown has managed to make the Merovingian myth mainstream reading by tucking it away in a mediocre thriller and calling it fact in a work of ďfiction.Ē You will feel the manipulation.

I know nothing of Dan Brown (save on the book jacket it says he lives in New England) nor do I care to research him further. I donít know what his beliefs are. I donít know why he wrote this book. As someone who has always been academically interested in Arthurian Grail mythology and has recently become interested in Merovingian lore, it appears to me that The Da Vinci Code is a way to spread these ideas to the masses in a non-threatening way. (The Merovingian bloodline is said to be the line of descendants from Jesus and Mary Magdelene, which means they had a child. Controversy ensues.)

Unlike master writers or Da Vinci himself, Dan Brown is not delicate. His hand is all too heavy.

Seeing as how the best parts of this book regard the exposition on the Priory of Sion, the Merovingian myths and the history of the Grail in relation to paganism, the history of goddess worship and the female form and artwork, I fail to see how moviemakers will possibly be able to include all of these interesting bits in the movie. The action, the vanilla thriller plot (predictable and boring) will be the core of the movie because thatís what modern movies are made of: PLOT. The main characters might be improved upon in film, but if much of the lore is lost (which is what makes the story unique in the first place) then I fear we may have one of the better Ashley Judd thrillers on our hands. (Note: All Ashley Judd thrillers suck, but some are watchable on TV if you have the flu or are on house arrest.)

Cut those chunks of exposition from Da Vinci, string them together and you have a non-fiction book examining the Merovingians as fact, not fiction. But, of course, no one would read that. (Well, except me.)

I have a feeling I might be one of few to have given Da Vinci Code a bad write-up. (Minus a select group of Christians who were, naturally, wicked pissed and the Vatican, who is against the book, which is the best way to make sure that everyone reads it.) If you donít know what a Merovingian is or that the Grail may not indeed be a chalice, and if you enjoy thrillers and fiction as opposed to works examining conspiracy presented as non-fiction or comparative mythology textbooks, then you may find The Da Vinci Code somewhat interesting. Keep in mind, however, that with an hour or so of web research you can easily get a full dose of Illuminati Conspiracy Theories. Much more than is included in the book. Much stranger than is written in the book.

I would post a link here, but it would probably freak you out. (I know it freaked me out. Of course, that didnít stop me from reading through the entire siteÖ)

Psych, here's the link: http://www.heart7.net/knights-templar-conspiracy.htm
Update: Damn, that link died and it was a good one. To start your own conspiracy search, Google something like this: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&client=safari&rls=en-us&q=prince+william+antichrist&btnG=Search

The most interesting take away from The Da Vinci Code is this: Why are references to the Merovingians, Illuminati and so on appearing in other pop works such as Alias and The Matrix? Perhaps this has been examined for some time and I am just now at a point where I am aware of it. (i.e.: Iím not 10 anymore, which is brag-able.) Or, perhaps, it has become relevant for some other reason?

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What is Black, White and Sucks All Over? 

Screening Sin City is likeÖ

Falling into a comic nightmare where everyone talks in cheesy voice over, violence is void of emotion and all the girls are hookers. (Apparently being a hooker in Basin City is rad because the hookers police their own part of town, which, of course, is the shitty part of town. Nonetheless, they're in control and that obviously makes them totally rootable.) Hereís the thing, kid, weíre supposed to forgive this movieís careless use of violence in the name of style and a few kitschy noir jokes sprinkled throughout?

Fuck off. I am not going to faux-like Sin City just to show the boys on the block I can hang with their violent, jerk-off flick.

The movie is actually three stories knit together. Each story examines the motivation behind killing. (RevengeÖ Because thatís something new.) Itís a touch of Kill Bill, (the film that opened the door for this piece of crap to be made. Thanks a lot, Q.T.), a touch of failure and a heap of torture glossed-up by interesting special effects. The story isn't non-existent, but it certainly isn't strong, either. And for a story driven by the motivation to kill, it needs assistance: The character motivation is completely unbelievable. (And, no, the voice over does not help.) I wasnít with the characters when I know the writer intended that I should be. I fought the urge to walk out of the theater.

I can admire Sin City's style and rawness. It isnít afraid to be what it is. Trouble is itís boring and nightmarish. Iíve seen slasher flicks with less violence. Detached. Unemotional. Unmotivated. This isnít a noir thriller. Itís a noir horror. The studio has marketed it to us as the former. (Talk about yellow bastards.)

And, let me tell you boys, Jessica Alba has little screen time and sheís only in the cowboy gear for the amount of time youíve seen the clip on TV. The girls in this flick are beatable furniture. (Aside from quiet Miho, who sword slices some dudes up chop suey style. This definitely makes up for her being a hooker.)

Simply because you can do something (i.e.: stunning special effects) isnít a reason to do it (i.e.: shit story with no redeeming value.) This flick certainly has no positive empowerment or release for the viewer.

The meat of the movie is images of black and white blood, death and evil that, outside of the context of character motivation and a good story, are disgusting. Comic style, a pinch of humorÖ But not the same amounts that Q.T. throws in to help you stomach his wince-inducing violence. It tries to let us in on some violence-covering joke, but itís not funny.

Sin City isnít getting away with anything.

This movie calls itself clever and stylized to cover its clumsy usage of two of the most controversial story tools of all time: Sex and violence. After stripping sex and violence of all its storytelling and character developing power, Sin City is left with nothing but unmotivated and BORING gore. (If you are going to shock for shockís sake, then at least use something more interesting than dismemberment.)

Sin City is entirely unnecessary.

Ask anyone who ďlikedĒ Sin City why they liked it, and theyíll comment on the visuals or the attention to detail in regard to the graphic novels. Not the story. Not the characters. Theyíve been eye-fucked by the EFX and ear-fucked by the buzz into thinking they like the flick.

In conclusion: Sin City sucks, but it did teach me that hookers are awesome if they know martial arts or carry automatic weapons.

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Harder and Harder to Breathe 

Last week I caught the worst cold in existence. (Itís true. I looked it up in the Encyclopedia of Colds, Revised Edition.) During the height of my illness, I had something that could only be described as The Whooping Cough: I would get stuck in a coughing fit and not be able to stop. It was really pretty.

During one of said coughing fits, I actually hurt myself. My side. Something to do with my left ribs. It has been almost a week and it still hurts.

This has resulted in my having to miss ninjitsu, gymnastics and my daily J.Sto dance parties. (Note: Dancing alone in your room is both awesome and necessary.) Yesterday I had had enough. I couldnít go another minute without a J.Sto dance party, so I decided to try a mini: Only three songs.

A crippling move. My side hurts even worse.

I became worried that I was suffering from more than a pulled muscle. I immediately dialed a friend of mine who is a NAVY SEAL (fact: it is the job of a SEAL to know everything about anything) to see if it is possible to crack a rib by coughing really, really hard. He said that heís seen stranger things, but it is highly improbable. And lame. It was then that I decided that I definitely didnít crack my rib by coughing.

More like, some evilÖ dude tried toÖ crash my J.Sto dance party andÖ I kicked his ass. Twice. However, during our duel, I did a wicked back handspring and he caught me in the side with a roundhouse kick. This may have resulted in a cracked rib. I am so awesome that I have not gone to the hospital to find out.

Pain feels good. It lets you know that you are alive.

What the hell war movie is that from?

Anyway, thatmovielied.

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Make the World a Better Place 

Per the loads of feedback Iíve received over the past few weeks, I am taking today to get ahead and handle some updates. This means that I wonít be answering JSDC mail for a few days.

Sodonítemailme.

I will, however, be reading comments while doing backend work on the site. Iím also finishing the screenplay, dealing with some meetings and devising a plan to kick Carson Daly off the air. Forever.

Related Projects:
FAQ Updates
Archive Search Bar
Finish Screenplay
Concept Art
Book Ideas
Thwart Carson Daly

Dinner of Champions:
3 Madeline Cookies
1 Starbucks Strawberry & Cream Frappucchino
1 Starbucks Vanilla Frappucchino (Bottled)
1 Bowl Cinnamon Toast Crunch

Breakfast of Champions:
1 Starbucks Double Vanilla Frappucchino (Bottled)
1 Brownie (Extra Large)

Complete Archival Read Throughs: 2
Current Time: 3:43 4:24 AM PT
Crustacean Related Photos: 1
Entries Composed, Not Published, Deleted: 3
Communists Trying to Use Me: 1

Hello,
I just happened to stumble across your site. You seem to know(ish) famous people, people who can access the media etc. So if I can influence you I can possibly get to them - and they can then influence everyone.

This is a good thing because I want to make the world a better place. I want to do this by changing the way the world is organised so that more 'rights' are given to more people. Things like education, healthcare, housing.

In short I am a Communist.

This does not mean I kill people or am a mass murderer - this is a partial misinterpretation on the part of the capitalist media.

If you would like to find out more please go to
http://www.etext.org/Politics/MIM/movies/index.html

For some Maoist movie reviews - maybe they will change the way you look at the world.

Yours,
Rob Mahan,

PS. I am not crazy I have a regular job and dont shout at people in the street.


Dear Crazy,

Havenít you heard? Communism was played out before I was even born. Nowadays people are only afraid of Middle Easterners*, which is understandable because they are all terrorists.

Stop emailing me or Iím going to have The Gunn hack your site and put up photos of people looking awesome while enjoying capitalism.

Free Marketly,
JS

*Note: This is sarcasm. I have many friends who are from the Middle East and Iím pretty sure that most of them arenít terrorists. If they are, however, I would like for the government to know that we really arenít that good of friends and that Carson Daly is their leader.

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Thereís No Honorable Mention in Baseball 

Lately I have run into a lot of talk about baseball. Baseball, baseball, baseball. I guess itís on everyoneís minds. Or something. Most of the time this annoys me because talk of baseballness brings back a huge chunk of my past identity.

After all, until recently most of my life was dedicated to playing competitive fastpitch softball. Springs, summers and falls were spent on ball fields. Winters? Practicing inside at World of Baseball winter camp. The Grizz & M.Sto spent their weekends and evenings carting C.Sto and I around on our pursuit of state championshipism. (Even worse for them in C.Stoís case because she was a pitcher and The Grizz coached many of her teams.)

Despite other activities, (writing and the arts,) softball owned me. I thought I would play at University until I slowed down long enough to realize that I didnít want to take it that far. That I wanted to focus on my acting and writing. And become a Ninja.

Here in Los Angeles the batting cages are too far away and, yes, none of my friends know how to throw, so yes, I am out of softball shape and memory. But one thing still remains clear in my mind and comes flooding back each time I hear someone recounting whatever play-by-play from some game:

Drop third strike is the stupidest professional baseball/softball rule EVER.

More people should be pissed about this issue and dedicate their lives to eliminating it from game play so that I donít have to deal with getting on base in such a lame way. Itís like getting honorable mention at bat or some other shitty consolation prize. Itís winning because the other team didnít bring it, not because you bested the pitcher at the plate or even put the ball in play, for that matter. Itís like getting a fourth strike. And how pissed is that pitcher when the catcher fucks up that final K?

I mean, letís face it: Drop third is worse than getting walked.

Excluding getting walked on purpose, which is awesome because it means that you are the shit. Unless the pitcher is only loading the bases, in which case getting walked still sucks and you are lame.

I know what you are going to say, youíre going to say, ďBut Jessica, drop third makes the catcher work harder and keeps the game moving blah blah.Ē What this really means is that the only way you can get on base is if the catcher drops the ball after you whiff out. I donít care what anyone who canít hit has to say, so your point is disqualified from this argument.

In conclusion, I know everything about all kinds of stickball so I know what I'm talking about. Drop third strike is wicked retarded. If you want to form a coalition against D3S, then please let me know as I will fully endorse you and make you totally famous via my website.

Otherwise, we will have to wait for C.Sto to become President so that she can outlaw the D3S rule, which was obviously planted by old-skool terrorists in attempts to ruin Americaís favorite pastime.

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Stranger Than Fiction 

Random JSDC Fact

Do submit your random JSDC facts to me via e-mail.

(Make sure that they are edited and totally true like the ones above.)

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Two Feet From The Edge 

What do you do when The Edge is playing the guitar all up in your grill?

You stand and admire his wicked guitar stylings, thatís what you do. (BTW, nice chucks, Mr. The Edge.)

Yes, oh yes, I went to see U2 in concert.

I'm unapologetic about being accustomed to having the sweet ticket hook-up. Usually, I am lucky enough to score industry seats or the like and therefore have seen many a performer up-close and personal. Yes, oh yes, this show was no different. I was right by the catwalk in the front, so, yes, oh yes, Bono only needed to extend his hands and we would have touched. (And I might have stolen his sunglasses.)

But that didnít happen. I did, however, find myself battling one ambiguously gendered she-male who thought he-she might get away with invading my space, thus starting a silent war of elbows. Apparently, this was all part of his-her master plan to flash a ďMarry Me Bono!Ē sign at the right moment. The guy behind him-her promptly ripped said sign down, and, anyway, isnít Bono already married? (That was one stupid he-she.)

I didnít see the sign fiasco, though, because I hardly danced or moved or breathed... Truly, I was watching and taking in each moment for I knew it might be the only time I would I see that band play live. The concert was simple. Professional. Charming in its reality. No gloss. The music drove the show.

There will be a ringing silence in my ears for days to follow.

I saw U2.

It was worth it.

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