June 11th, 2002

pencil

reticent, irascible, iconoclastic

The citizens of an occupied territory are rarely overly friendly to the forces of the incursion. Emmett Watson would understand.

People move to the Pacific Northwest from other places, and complain about the weather. They complain about the drivers. They complain about the drivers in the weather. They express a certain admiration for the beauty of the environment, while proceeding to tear it down to build strip malls. They inflate the local housing market beyond the reach of many locals. They conduct their business with a tinge of world-weariness at being exiled to the provinces.

The gelid marshmallow-like response of the natives to neighborly overtures by recent arrivals may be a little more understandable in this light. Or perhaps people here are simply like the weather - gloomy, impenetrably damp and cold, with occasional sun breaks to fool the hopeful.
pencil

so, the magic cabinet...

I had never seen The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, though I knew it to be one of those films everyone refers to, and I knew the title. Made in 1919/1920, it must perforce be considered as a period piece as the strokes of the characters are rather broad, in the pantomime-like style of the silent film.
Ah, but the sets! Truly fantastic and bizarre, with triangular doors, twisty streets, strange stripy spires... Oh yes, Ted Geisel saw this film at an impressionable time, I am certain.

The showing last night was great - the Theremin accompaniment was very appropriate (if a trifle loud at times) and truly added to the atmosphere. It was fascinating to watch the audience being drawn in to the film, as I was myself - there was good natured laughter at the abruptness of the opening and some of the more play-like aspects of the initial scenes, but by Act III of the IV people had been drawn into and adjusted to the milieu and the older cinematic conventions.

I'm glad I went. I was having some doubts standing in line in the alley, but I'm pleased I persevered.
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