I wanted to post my full review of The Avengers, but since you prolly just saw it, I won’t bore you. You know it was awesome, and you know that without the assembled cast (see what I did there?) and Joss Whedon at the helm, it wouldn’t have worked. Oh, it’s also great to see that SOMEONE finally got the Hulk right. Not just Dr. Banner, though Mark Ruffalo was pitch-perfect…no, I mean the CGI incarnation of the Hulk was completely awesome. So much s that I really hope Hollywood rolls the dice again, because I would pay to see an entire Hulk movie if it was done as well as the characterization in The Avengers.
A couple of random thoughts, one of which I may have mentioned before, but which really struck me when I saw the preview for Battleship. The US Navy has unlocked a spiffy new digital blue camo pattern for their deckside troops and sailors, corpsmen, etc. The obvious drawback to this cool new color scheme is that once someone falls overboard they are impossible to find. “ALL I SEE IS BLUE, CAPTAIN!! WHERE IS ENSIGN JOHNSON?!?! JOOOHHHHHNSSSOOOOOON!!!!” Maybe they should be made of a material that turns blaze orange when it gets wet. “Captain, there! Just off the port bow! It’s Johnson, sir! Stupid bastard fell in again, but thanks to that neon orange uniform, we’ll have him back aboard in no time, captain!”
Remember Compact Disc Players? Those were awesome. I don’t wanna brag or nothin’, but my vehicle has a six-disc changer right in the dashboard. Yep. Well, apparently, if you don’t use your disc changer/player for five months or so, it kinda gets…lazy. As in, doesn’t work too well. Keep in mind that my Escape is about ten years old, so the under-used electronics might be showing their age. Anyway, I wanted to play some Volbeat tunes that I don’t have loaded on my iPod (NO, YOU SHUT UP!! I’VE BEEN BUSY IS ALL!) Before loading a new CD, I had to eject one of the discs already in there. That’s where the problems began. For those of you that have never spent time with this sort of archaic technology have never experience the numbing fear one experiences when the words “ERROR – – UNABLE TO EJECT DISC–” or similar words of digital madness scrawl painfully, quickly in evil green bits of mocking hate across the primitive LED faceplate. So you try it again. And again you are denied. Panic starts setting in. You try to change disc slots. “Let’s try disc five, and then I’ll go back to disc one. Probably just a little dusty.” No dice. Again. Now the droplets of sweat begin racing one another down either side of your nose and your are suddenly aware of how hot it is in the car. Then, cruelty: on the thirteenth try you hear it…a sickening subsonic whirring noise. Somewhere deep inside the analog wiring and Chinese-assembled plastic gears and tiny metal springs and levers, something is trying to work. SOME part of the mechanical beast is trying to wake up and deliver your cherished CD back to you, back to the surface world and sunlight and hope…so you mash the “EJECT” button with one thumb on top of the other, pushing until the meat of your flesh turns pink, then white…and you hear it…the small “click” and you SEE it…the very tip of the disc, a sliver of silver and greenish plastic…a giant’s pinkie nail barely, almost imperceptibly showing itself like the final silvery sliver of the last crescent before a New Moon. You hold your thumb on the button and manage to sort of get a tiny little purchase on the disc with the other hand. “C’mon…please…” you mutter through teeth ground fast together. You wiggle the disc, pulling, coaxing a nanometer at a time…your sweaty fingers slip off, and you grab it again…a centimeter more is showing…the gears of the monster are grinding and whirring…this black plastic-and-graphite bitch isn’t giving up her prize so easily, but you can feel the beast’s willpower waning…the spell breaking…clearly now you see the sharpie-scrawled label “Summer Mix #3” as the disc is halfway out…now three-quarters…and finally it leaps out of the dashboard and you hold it aloft like Excalibur itself, gleaming in the midday light, motes of dust swirling and dancing and singing your praises, exalting you and this victory of man over machine. Momentum is on your side, and tide of battle has turned. Rohan has come at last, and the enemy is routed, fleeing…Disc Slot Two yields the Wiggles Hot Potatoes LIVE!…Slot Three produces Concrete Blonde “Bloodletting” (THAT’S where that thing was!)…Number Four is surprisingly empty…Five angrily spits out Fatboy Slim, and finally Bing Crosby’s “Merry Christmas” (or “White Christmas” depending on the year/label) strolls out of the final Disc Slot and lights a pipe, humming to itself and smiling. And it occurs to you then how fickle and wonderful are the odds that made this possible, and how you could have been consigned to a fate of hearing “Christmas in Killarney” over and over again in the middle of April. And then you realize that perhaps that wouldn’t be so bad a fate at all.