Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Shape of Things To Come

Oh, that toilet is not from the women's bathroom that I was in, I just googled the image.

That was a really nice idea to have your family put 1% of the budget into something that would benefit both you and them. It's too bad they didn't go for it, they're probably kicking themselves for it right now. How did that whole situation actually end up working out? Were they trying to start some type of communal land living situation? Or just a vacation spot, utopian idea, or what?

I actually think about different levels of utopia with most of the projects I'm doing. I have a lot of thoughts about it but haven't done a ton of historical research into utopias. I just look for them in sci fi movies and in real life. For example, I see Portland as the microbrew mecca of the planet, the eco-friendliest city in the US, and the bike friendliest city in the US. But we have a few issues, like homelessness, education, and gentrification, that we kind of sweep under the rug and we just talk about how progressive we are here. In movies, utopias are usually just disguised as dystopias. One person's dream and vision for the way the world should work is another person's nightmare. H.G. Well's was brilliant at showing this problem in his early films like The Shape of Things To Come and The Man Who Could Work Miracles.

Here's a video of The Shape of Things To Come. The world has gone through a terrible war and a type of authorian government is in control in order to keep the peace...peace as they know it. The guy in the futuristic black outfit is from another land where a different kind of peace has been created and they attempt to force this peace onto the first group of people. Even in this blissful peace world dissent arises.

The dystopian film The Lathe of Heaven has influenced a lot of my work as well as the way I think about utopias. It was originally written by Ursula Le Guin in the 70's and it portrays Portland, Oregon in a number of different dystopian futures. Basically this guy, George Orr, has these dreams that can actually change history and his dreams become reality. So if he dreams that Portland becomes the sunniest city in the world, it becomes the sunniest city in the world. A scientist/therapist/doctor gets in touch with George and tries to manipulate the dreams for his own gain, as well as to solve all the world's problems. The only problem is that George always interprets the doctor's dream suggestions wildly different than the doctor intended and so things just get worse.

Okay, here's something a little extra:
I'm posting something that you recently sent me that you probably didn't think would end up here in this conversation. The more I think about it, the less it has to do with what we are talking about but I thought I'd put it up here because it's clever. What do you think? Does it have anything to do with what we are talking about?:

eBay item # 300294771244
I tried bidding on it, but the bidding was over so I sent this person an email saying that if they still had it, I would pay for it. The problem is, I don't have a boss or anyone to brown nose up to so it doesn't really work for me.

Ride the Recession Survival Kit

Ride (intransitive verb - to do something successfully and apparently effortlessly, as if carried by a wave.)

The Survival Kit comes in a "Look for the Silver Lining" bag, and includes:

A notepad and pen to keep handy so that you can keep track of who, among the financial companies, received bailouts, yet raised your interest rates, and managed to come up with the money for bonuses, fancy retreats and Super Bowl expenses. (This information will be particularly helpful after the doom and gloom of the recession because it will help you choose who NOT to do business with.) *As an added bonus, I will share with you, the winner, my thoughts and notes from MY notepad; consisting of my list of "Good Guys" and "Guys that can Kiss my Ass".

Package of earplugs so that you can effectively drown out all the B.S. going on around you, i.e. the news, your boss, bill collectors, etc.

Lip Balm so that you can moisten your lips in case you find yourself in a situation where you need to do a lot of butt kissing.

Package of tissues, which are dual purpose: May be used to wipe any unsightly residue off your face from brown nosing, OR, to wipe any tears which may fall due to failure of said brown nosing.

Obviously, this survival kit is meant for entertainment purposes only. I cannot guarantee that this kit will help, but at least it is good for a laugh. AND, the winning bidder will be doing their part to help stimulate the economy because I guarantee whatever I make will be used towards paying MY bills!

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