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E.C. Henry

Billy,

I'm going to TRY to talk you down off the ledge.

First off, no one in their right mind would ever try to polarize you out of your job. You've got a rich treasure trove of real life experience to draw off that in the immortal words of M.C. Hammer, other people, "Can't touch this."

I think it is the sheer amount of choices available in America today which lends itself to the populous finding their individuallity in the specifitivity of the choices they make. Instead of "Yeah sure, I'll have a coffee," now it's, "I'll have a double chi moaciado. Hold the foam. Two Equals -- no sugar."

A good movie is a good movie is a good movie. Personally I don't think finding mainstream is so hard. Biggest complaint with "mainstream movies" is you can get so politically correct that the movie has NO TASTE whatsover. Know what I mean?

Many people I know really liked Clint Eastwood's "Gran Tarino." Did you see that picture? If not you really should. EXCELLENT movie about race relations in the U.S. Many people I know RAVED about this movie. And in my humble opinion Hollywood would be best served if they made more movies like "Gran Tarino" and "Crash" that have SOMETHING TO SAY instead of churning out tofu offerings in the name of being "mainstream." Something to consider...

Great post.

- E.C. Henry from Bonney Lake, WA

P.S. After 11 month of being unemployed I FINALLY got a job 3 weeks ago. But get this, it gets better; tomorrow I'm starting an even better job for the highest per-dollar-an-hour wage I've EVER had!! Before these jobs broke I JUST got aproved for another $9,000 in unemployment too -- but I NEVER felt right taking that money. After 11 months of looking I was beginning to wonder... But now my conviction is stonger than it's ever been: God is good! :)

J

I think fear *really* drives hate, as well as the inability to compromise. People are scared shitless. No money, no jobs, no houses...what else is there to do besides FREAK OUT and point fingers and make scapegoats out of people just trying to find a better life?

...Which is why all I want to do is make them laugh a little, think a little, and open their minds a little.

Baby steps. It's all we can do.

...And then long massages when the stress gets stupid.

Robin

Just a small note here on J-Lo's lovely butt, which has clearly thrown the Earth off axis and caused most of our current problems you described.

I think all will be well once Miss -Lo realizes that she is the femme fatale-type and not the meg ryan-type. Jenny around the block, not the girl next door. At least her agents should know, but are probably too afraid to tell her.

I also believe that happy days will be here again once the young Miss Dianna Agron (Glee) gets a rom-com. Ms. Agron is the girl next door/audrey-hepburn-type that the audiences will fall in love with on sight.

Rachel Hauck

I may not agree with everything you stand for politically, Billy, you are dead on when you say we are polarized. It's not helpful or healthy and yeah, what are romantic and romantic comedy writers supposed to focus on now?

Oh for the days of Jane Austin when it was a social taboo and could cause pages and pages of tension if a young man spoke to a women without being introduced first! ;)

Okay, maybe that's too extreme, but when society becomes so divide by culture, values and ideology it does become hard to write a script or story that appeals to all.

Don't worry about it! We are a strong people. We'll work it through.

Rachel

Christian H.

It's more the polarization of the non-intellectual. The reason, in my mind, that things come to such a head is that the fine art of learning for learning's (and the economy's) sake is a lost one at best.

People live their lives on pop culture and "modern-acid washed jeans" rather than trying to learn about all things America.

In that sense it becomes easier to know what will work but perhaps harder to know that won't - work or offend.

Perhaps writers should turn the tide from the underachieving hero and get back to real heroes. Ones that inspire to greatness, not mediocrity. Ones that get along by their wits and not the incompetence of others or "luck."

But I digress, the key to America's problems is for people to remove their prefixes.

Then there's only Americans and not African Americans, Chinese Americans, Polish Americans.

I'm reminded of Obama's beautiful inauguration speech. People should really listen to that because I HOPE people CHANGE their laid-back wardrobe.

People are poorer now because we live in an IT economy where you need computer skills and anything but jeans.

Hey at least people can get fat at a desk.

Please no more political posts. :-)

mernitman

EC: Congratulations on your double job mojo validation! My father loved GRAN TORINO, and for that reason I've solicited a copy, which I look forward to perusing soon.

Sweet 20+ J, baby steps, yes. Whatever it take to move us onward...

Robin: How J-Lo insightful you are!
She should be taking a meeting with YOU. Ms. Agron are you listening?

Rachel: Thank you for the vote of confidence (i.e. for all of us!).

Christian: It's not political, really. It was a cry from the heart. Don't plan on making it a regular occurrence, but surely the clan of the SOUL will ultimately embrace such a need?

Natty Light

I think about this as I think about concerts.

When an artist jumps upon a soapbox between songs...I shut down then shut it off. I'm there to be entertained by the MUSIC...not a stance on this or that.

Same for movies. Don't squeeze in a line that makes a statement. Such a downer. Not everyone believes the same as "you."

Generation ME thinks we really need to have their ideals slammed down our throats. Actually, we don't.

Turn the M upside down. WE...can think for ourselves.

Just my two cents.

Great blog...great book!

Christian H.

That last one was kind of a joke. I'm just very frustrated that people complain about jobs, but I get interview offers everyday.

It's true that I realized the change to Service-Oriented Economy rather than the Product-Oriented one we had before 2001 but it should be clear that Americans can't expect to be paid for nothing anymore.

Most people I see with these polarized attitudes are manual laborers who refuse to learn new skills.

In other words, if you're not working in IT in some form, you have a greater chance to be underemployed and it's not the fault of "them" the fault is yours.

I'm actually ready to suggest a bi-yearly "citizen test" to weed out the lazy and lower the output necessary to provide services for them.

I'm definitely trying to figure out how to get a dress code for public areas. It's getting ridiculous out there. People aren't dressing for success and complaining when it doesn't come.

Joanna Farnsworth

I say, let's de-polarize the Rom Com movie.

Too many are about socio-political issues or sexual neuroses, instead of about, you know, ROMANCE.

Being a romantic. Finding LOVE. Getting together.

Billy, you know exactly what your mainstream audience wants. It wants Romance.

That's your baseline common interest, taste, and shared value.

So please get back to work, and find us some scripts

Judith Duncan

hey Billy,
My friends told me about the bill passed in Arizona which reminds me of something from WW2,where people had to show their papers all the time. I think the world is so frightened at the moment.

Maybe the kind of romcom we need is one that IS political. Where the hero and heroine have totally opposing views politically
and we can watch them fall in love and work through it anyway.I'm thinking George Clooney as the liberal and....?Who would be female lead? Anyway,maybe I should start work on it now.

Cheers,
Judith

mernitman

Natty: Your two cents makes sense to me.

Christian: These days, keeping one's sanity is a full time job.

Joanna: I'm looking!!!

Judith: Go right ahead... (just don't expect Joanna to come see it).

Joanna Farnsworth

I'll come see it, but only if it's a TRUE "Political Rom Com".

With Clooney as ,say, the charming, smooth-talking non-committment prone Rightist, and, say, Tia Leoni, as the hopeless Romantic committment-seeking Liberal.

And with the politics dressed up in a political "Win" visual plot metaphor, for an underlying "Escapist/Engagist" attitudinal story (ie like Rear Window).

Differing political views just isn't enough.

I can get that sort of arguing anywhere.

Bill

About polarization ... I came across an interesting article on Huffington called 'Aging: The Secret Life of the Middle-Aged Brain.' The interesting quote is this:

"… Those who research how adults learn have found that one way to keep our brains alive and growing is to actively explore ideas — and people — that challenge our view of the world."

So the threat polarization poses is also a kind of mental death.

free movie

Thank you for that delicate and elegant writing, i enjoyed to read your post, its not flattering but definitely not offensive, you know the art of bloging.

Diamond Drill Bits

That last one was kind of a joke. I'm just very frustrated that people complain about jobs, but I get interview offers everyday..

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