Things I Dig…

include finding references to Pop Culture/History in my movies. That’s why Forrest Gump remains one of my favorite movies.

Besides the fact that it is a really charming film, I can still remember the tingles I felt when “Elvis”, “Nixon”, “Kennedy” and yes, “John Lennon” came on screen…

It was more fun because those were the days when there was no Internet and I was too poor to buy any decent movie magazines worth a spit…

The surprise I got at the cinema was simply… priceless

Forrest Gump with JFK

John Lennon, Forrest Gump

Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr, Tony Starks, Bill Gates

That’s why it was quite a kick to see this short and fast photo of Bill Gates with “Tony Starks’ first circuit board” in the latest Iron Man flick.

Maybe it’s time I stop watching trailers and reading so much about movies. I might be rewarded by more surprises like these at the cinema…

But that would also mean me watching shit shows like Max Payne…

Hmmm…

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Not that I want to make this a John Lennon Fan site….

but, I just NEED to write down my feelings about artistic integrity.

See, I was reading Richard Dawkin’s “God Delusion” a while back. In it (the introduction, i believe), he mentioned that some people were opposed to John’s classic song (a.k.a. Imagine) because it is “Anti Religion”. So some artists (a.k.a. tight ass pansies), disagreeing with the song’s anti-religion stance, have changed the line “and no religion too” into “and one religion too” in their cover versions.

At that time, I was mildly amused. Because it is rather funny. To use a “anti religion communist”‘s song to promote your one religion. You have to see the funny side in this.

Now, before I go any further, I must first proclaim that I am not anti-religion. Hell (oops…) I am not even an atheist. I’m under the “it’s complicated” category. I believe that the world was created 5000 years ago. I believe it was exploded into existence 5 billion gazillion years ago. I believe dinosaurs once roam the Earth. I believe some Supreme Power left the bones under the Earth as one big cosmic joke (haha, I can’t believe I got you guys to dig that big hole with brushes smaller than My tooth brush). I refuse to believe we are mutant apes (hmmm… if this is true, we are the X-Monkeys!! WOOHOOO!! Watch me pulverize you with my opposable thumbs!!!) . But at the same time, as despicable and ugly as we can be at times, I refuse to believe we are made from mud either. I refuse to believe that if Someone up there wants to speak to the little people, he’ll do it through loud, obnoxious, white men who drives big cars and shout out of television sets. I refuse to believe donating obscene amounts of money to these sad souls is a stairways to heaven. I don’t believe my heart will be weight against a feather when I die. I don’t believe anything, even death, can make me lie still in the ground for millenniums till Kingdom Come. I don’t believe death is the end of the journey. But I don’t believe it can be the start of another either.

Right. Too far off tangent… Curse you, Neil Gaiman!

Anyway, I suddenly remembered Dawkin’s paragraph. It came to me in a flash of brilliance as I was…take a wild guess… studying!. So studying really does stimulate my brain cells… I just wish it was in the correct direction as where the books were going.

One thing blogging taught me about myself is that I’m not so good at keeping on one thread of thought for a very long time. See, I’ve done it again. I’m like one of those kids on “Final Destination”. After a series of near-misses, and just as I thought it was safe to go about my daily business, I’ll be hit by a train… of thought…. Geddit? geddit? “Train” of thought…. geez…

Anyway (again) I googled “and one religion too” and came up with this nonsense…

Imagine there’s a Heaven / It’s easy if you try / A hell below us / Above us Holy sky / Imagine all the people / Living for God’s way ~

Imagine there’s no hatred / It isn’t hard to do / No cause to kill or die for / And one religion too / Imagine all the people / Living in Christ’s peace. ~

And that’s just one sampling of a few choice lyrics on this website (for just US$100 a month till you die, you’ll get to spend eternity in Heaven)…

I’ve mentioned before. I am not anti religion, and certainly not anti Christianity, but Jesus really needs to get a new fan club.

Music is music. The musician (in this case, John <aka the Genius>) is trying to spread his message through his music… Just let him be. I cannot believe that some people could so blindedly and flagrantly butcher a song up to change it’s meaning totally. It is a Hit song for a reason and piggybacking on it’s success and manipulating it to say something completely different is just plain… sad, actually…. And it does say a lot about the levels you’re willing to stoop to for money. To twist the words of something written just decades ago to make it suit your own purposes. “Imagine” what you can do to something that was written almost 2 millenniums ago…

So to you lyrics changer, I have this to say…. Write your own “10 Greatest Songs of All time” song if you want to spread a message….

I look like John Lennon!

Or at least my hair does… You see, I finally went for my hair cut after putting it off for the longest time… And the barber, for all his infinite wisdom and constant assurance of giving me a “Soooo-per stylish” haircut, decided that the mop top is the best style for me. People who actually know me should now strive to put that image outta their minds… it’s not a pretty sight, I assure you…

Now, if you thought that was bad, you should’ve seen the next guy…

Anyway, I’ve been putting off this hair cut for the longest time because
1 – I’m using it as a sort of calender… 1 haircut a month means I’ll be home after 6 hair cuts! WOOOOHOOOOOooo!! (please don’t ask…)
2 – The constant water shortages and (completely unannounced) water rationing here means there is a high chance of not being able to wash off those irritating short hair after the hair cut. And doesn’t EVERYONE just hate that feeling? (Incidentally, that is my official reason for not exercising for 2 months plus also… I mean, you MUST take a bath after exercises right? It’s the only considerate thing to do. Imagine the amount of irritation you’ll cause to the people around you…. hmmm… now, THAT might be a reason to start exercising again….)
3 – I think I look better with long hair

Now, as I was saying, I went for my hair cut at 1900H on 11 Jan 08. Take note of the timing. It’s important to the story telling, boys and girls.

So after a 15 minute wait and a hair cut that took around 8 minutes, I was ready to make my payment to the barber at… 1923H. Now, being the resourceful and ever enterprising man that he is, the barber decided to get started on the next head instead of waiting for the nansy pansy guy to fish the money outta his wallet.

So this next guy was getting his hair shaved while I waited around for the opportune moment to make my payment and leave when suddenly….

yup, Electricity Saving Hour kicked in!

WooooHoooooo!!

Everything went dark, so the barber decided to stop and switch on his (battery powered) television. Having nothing better to do and not being able to make my way back in the dark, we sat together in the dark to watch a short game of cricket. It was kinda nice, just the barber, me and the guy with his half cut hair.

30 minutes later (apparently it’s Electricity Saving Half Hour that day), the power came on. I paid my fare and was preparing to leave when I heard…

the sound of profuse begging behind me. Apparently the barber shop closes at 2000H and so it was closing time by the lights came on again. Being the Time-conscious man that he is, the barber decided to close the shop instead of… finishing the half done hair cut. I am not making this up.

Some threats (from the cuttee) and a whole lot of begging (from the ermm… cuttee too) later, the barber decided to be magnanimous to the Sniveling Idiot who had the gall to expect a Full Hair Cut after closing time and took out his scissors to do a bit of trimming to “even out the hair” of the sod (who had, by this time promised that he would be a Good and Loyal Life Long slave Customer and all but offer up his virgin bride as a sacrifice if only the Barber could finish the hair cut)

4 snips later, I took a look at the guy’s head and made one of the most important decisions in my life. I shall be good friends with all barbers. You do not want to piss them off. Especially the ones that own battery power television but no battery power shavers or candles.

Not that I am questioning THAT brilliant decision, of course….

Yes, Yes… John Lennon again…

For whatever it’s worth, I’d intended to stop with these posts a few days ago. But you know how it is when you are thinking of something, you’ll start see items associated with whatever you are thinking about EVERYWHERE. I am pretty sure there is some cool psychology term to describe this. Any help here?

Anyway, this time, the tribute to John comes from… Mayday! And it is too beautiful not to be included. They wrote and performed a song called 約翰藍儂 that, for all the insanely cool amount of strokes in the characters means “John Lennon”

那年冬天 子彈 它給了你自由
沒了 軀殼 就活在人們心中
看著 今天 你會笑還是會搖頭

整個世界 曾經 都跟著你作夢
如今和平 依然在歌曲裡頭
猜忌 戰火 還跟著我一起生活

能不能暫時把你的勇氣給我 在夢想快消失的時候
讓我的歌 用力的穿過天空 為我愛的人做一秒英雄

一顆紅豆 為何 想單挑這宇宙
都要 怪你 在我心中播了種
一把 吉他 就想對抗萬千炮火

玩著遊戲 出糗 喧鬧的攝影棚
怪獸 石頭 默默的吐在廁所
OK
再來 要世界為我們感動

能不能暫時把你的勇氣給我 在夢想快消失的時候
讓我的歌 用力的穿過天空 為愛我的人做一秒英雄

能不能暫時把你的夢想給我 在勇氣快消失的時候
總有一天 要人們叫我披頭 最後沒成功 也做過最美的夢

沒有遺憾 最美的夢

Lovely lyrics. And being written in the old chinese script means that it looks really really cool as well.

I especially like the stanza:

一顆紅豆 為何 想單挑這宇宙
都要 怪你 在我心中播了種
一把 吉他 就想對抗萬千炮火

which, using my amazing language skills translates to: We love John Lennon and he inspires us….

Seriously, it means

“Why would a red bean (small fry) think of challenging the universe?
We blame you
for planting the seeds in my heart
Using a Guitar to challenge the endless wars”

Geddit? Red Bean – planting “seeds” in the heart.

I am no Language Major, (evident from the number of times I’ve used the word “cool” in this post already) but that sounds like (cool) poetry to me…

Sorry Yoko

You don’t know me and you’ll probably never read this post but it’s just something I have to do.

I was born after John was so violently snatched away from us but I discovered him and his music through the Beatles. Some things are just destined to live on forever. Reading through old newspapers and online articles (you know how rabid us fans can get when we are “in heat”. Feed us any scrap of information, any trivial and we devour it like the hungry vultures we are), I hated you. I hated you for being a “Power hungry, money grabbing” bitch who broke up the Beatles.

I hated you for years.

But being older (and hopefully wiser), I realize that the band probably self combusted. I realize that they have reached a point where they had to move on and just cannot play together anymore. But more than anything else, I realized that I really, really want to believe that you and John shared something special together. I realized that I really, really want to believe that THIS is the reason you are keeping his legacy alive after so many years. I realized that I really, really want to believe you still believe in his cause now as you have back then.

Regardless, I know that you hurt as much as the rest of us.

So, I guess this is sorry for hating you.

After 27 years, John has taught me another lesson – that sometimes all you need is love and we should all give peace a chance.

 

War is over if you want it

December 8th marks the 27th anniversary of the assassination of John Lennon. Yoko Ono is asking fans to post ‘War Is Over!’ artwork to commemorate his passing and show your support of peace.


Remembering John

John Lennon

Isn’t it funny that someone who has not even been on the same physical plane of existence as you can affect you so much? Today’s the day the Cowardly Psychopath, Mark David Chapman gunned down the Musical Genius John Lennon. 27 Years ago to the day, in fact. A while ago, I blogged a bit about how the Beatles with the title “Some people never really die, they just stop giving live performances”, but to find the actual article of John’s assassination 27 years later, brings this statement to a new level.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/december/8/newsid_2536000/2536321.stm

Like almost everyone else, I “discovered” the Beatles through their music and truly, truly believed that they “belong” to me and no one else. That is how good and personal the band and their music are.

These days (Warning: Old fossil rant coming up, in fact, this whole post is the rant of an old foggy, but what the fuck) where singers and bands talk about their “blings” and their “bitches”; where being in a band can mean you are the guy looking intensely at the turntable while trying to coax out more squeaky weasel-ly noises from it; where good hair and successful plastic surgery are all you need to succeed in the music “industry”, it’s not hard to look back at John, Paul, George and Ringo and wish for those simpler times where people still make music. (NO! Mumbling really fast and incoherently while pretending to be nonchalant about being surrounded by scantily clad, big busted women IS NOT MUSIC!!) (It is good entertainment though…) (If you press the “Mute” switch) (I mean who wouldn’t be entertained by spastic looking guys wearing their caps back to front??) (ermm… front still mean the side with the bill…) (right?)

Some things are still the same now as it was back then. Come on, let’s not delude ourselves, the music industry is, has been, and I suspect, will always be about 3 main components – Sex, Drugs and Sex. The Beatles are certainly no choir boys, but in those days (I hate it when my dad use this terms, but it seems the most appropriate for now), being a musicians actually stood for something.

You have a chance, an opportunity to stand up and tell other people what you think. Most people did not, does not and still will not take Right for fear of affecting their popularity and hence their income, but not John. For goodness sake, he refused to get out of bed to support world peace! If that is not inspiration, I do not know what is. It’s about telling the government off when you think they are wrong. It’s about creating “Imagine”, the most definitive shout for peace in our times. It’s about speaking the truth without fear of being labeled a traitor/a communist or in modern day terms: terrorist or religious fanatics. The terms change but the use of them as tools to instill fear and hence, command sheep-like obedience from the flock remains the same. Isn’t it funny and frightening how some things are still the same now as it was back then?

It’s NOT about supporting the most popular “unknown” causes or adopting children from little known country so you can collect them like others collect “Barbies of the World”. (Not that I would know anything about THAT, of course.)

Anyway, this post is a tribute to a great man, his beliefs and more than anything else, his willingness and steadfastness to stand by these beliefs.

Tributes performances to John.
http://www.geocities.com/TheTropics/7902/JohnLennon/tribute.html

I want to join your band of dreamers and I sincerely hope we’re not the only ones.