Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend: In popular culture, USAers take trips, connect with family, sort stuff out. About 4.4 million were expected to engage the airlines system this year. That's like a large city, squeezing through high speed tubular networks, riders in the sky.

If you don't take a trip, you just sort of camp out and BBQ in the backyard. The idea is to express a fondness for a way of life, and to acknowledge the price some have willingly paid to protect that for us, to express gratitude.

Of course the whole psychology is twisted if you're believing in empire and thinking the enslavement of the people isn't going well, or whatever cocktail chatter. But fortunately the USA was premised against empire, wasn't going to go the way of Rome this time. Checks and balances were put in.

However, in the shorter term, one Memorial Day is not a carbon copy of the next. The national mood and/or thought process continues to update, however quickly or slowly.

Our family was in the stay at home camp and engaged in the ritual in-taking of movies. The freedom to make these big movies is also perhaps to die for, and we enjoy taking them in. Yesterday it was Pirates of the Caribbean, Third Part.

The movie opens with a spy kid in the gallows, singing defiance, a regimented army of cocksures in control. We all shared a fondness for the Calypso character. I liked the recursive metaphysics involved in sending Davy Jones to his locker (i.e. "slaying death"). I also liked the "too many Sparrows" rendition of an eternal holding pattern, I thought an allusion to Depp's other role as the chocolate guy.

My day: Trevor and I cycled from his place to mine, then by the Stark Street Meeting House, where remodeling is happening, ending up at Sam's Hollywood Billiards for brunch. Then I pushed on alone to Chris and Larry's, for a bike ride out to Troutdale airport, where Larry got to fly in the simulator for a little while while Chris and I watched and asked questions (he's trained there before).

For no apparent reason, Tinkerbell and I fell into a shrub at the airport (add ironic Rocky theme music). Extrication was difficult and I did something weird to my left handlebar gear control in the process, such that I had to manually apply torque to stay in third all the way back (about 14 miles). Fortunately, Bike Gallery was still open and was able to fix the problem for $12.

This evening: BBQ with the neighbors.