Oracle wins! by Bob Patterson
Team Oracle teaches the "Never say Never" lesson
On Saturday September 21, 2013, film director William Friedkin was scheduled to do a book signing, for his new autobiography "The Friedkin Connection: A Memoir," at the Pacific Film Archive before a screening of "Cruising." Going there and taking some photos seemed like a relatively easy way to get some shots to use as the lead-in photo for this column. After taking some paparazzi style arrival photos, our enthusiasm for the busman's holiday work nosedived. Instinctively we knew the frames we had were lousy and that to get "the shot" for this event we would have to go into the book signing and that could be accomplished only by paying the price of admission for the first film and we were intimidated by the prospect of shelling out our money just for the privilege of helping a guy who arrived in a limousine sell extra copies of his new book. We balked at the opportunity but at least he got the lead position in this book wrangler's wrap-up column.
Three years from now, there will have been three more World Series played and three more Superbowls will be in the history books, but the next American Presidential election will still be more than a month in the future. Three more installments of the Oscar - Awards TV special will have been broadcasted before the Election Night coverage goes on the air.
It seems to the World's Laziest Journalist that even if any of our hero writers, Hemingway, Kerouac, and Hunter S. Thompson were still alive and churning out content, they would have a serious problem with the challenge of writing material from now until then that would hold readers' interest and be worth the effort.
Fox will have no trouble churning out simultaneously criticism of both President Obama and the front runner, Mrs. Clinton, but could Hunter S. Thompson sustain the "game day" level of intense enthusiasm for that long?
Could a long sustained series of very discouraging news broadcasts cause a country to suffer a collective nervous breakdown? Maybe by the time the 2016 Presidential Election is being held the "Top Forty" radio format will be experiencing a revival.
If a photographer with a blog had access to getting good close up photos of famous personalities such as the President and/or the former First Lady every day for the next three years, wouldn't the hypothetical photog eventually run out of motivation to sustain the effort?
Obviously, if some potential aspect of pop culture is going to motivate a writer for one more week, or for three more years, there is going to have to be a great deal of indulgence for personal preferences as the explanation for various self appointed story assignments and topic selections.
For example, if a writer tried and failed to get press credentials to cover the 1968 Democratic National Convention it seems unlikely that a good connection between then and now will hold the writer's or readers' attention, but if that same fellow saw Jimmy Clark, Phil Hill, and Lorenzo Bandini compete in Formula One car races, then it is quite likely that he will find a flimsy pretext for slipping a plug (or a full length column as film review) into the mix when "Rush," the new Ron Howard movie about auto racing, is released. Heck, the mainstream media crowd seems content to use the horse race analogy every four years; maybe a column about the guys who drive Ferraris could be used as a metaphor for the 2016 Presidential Election.
Our friend writer Dennis Etchison is plunging into the Facebook world with some posts touting his new writing project, so why not help a friend? The book "Mathison by Mathison" is the transcript of a two-and-a-half hour conversation Etchison had with Richard Matheson about his career . It will soon be available from Bad Moon Books. Their web site offers advanced copies autographed by Etchison and Mathison's son.
"Turtle on the Fencepost Finding Faith through Doubt," by Richard B. Patterson, has been mentioned in a previous column and, odds are, it will be plugged again before the results of the 2016 Presidential Election results are broadcasted.
"Eat, Drink, Vote," by Marion Nestle gets a plug just for the clever title.
"Humboldt" by Emily Brady should be of interest to folks looking into the topic of marijuana. Speaking of counties in California, Modoc and Siskiyou counties have voted to secede from the state of California and are starting the process of forming a new state.
Sunday, September 22, 2013, looked like it would be the day that New Zealand would win this year's America's Cup racing trophy and we considered going over to San Francisco and getting some grab shots that would help lure some new Kiwi eyeballs to the humble offerings of political punditry by the World's Laziest Journalist, but then, once again, we suffered an attack of motivation starvation. Even if we learned conclusively that the Prime Minister of New Zealand read our column about the inevitable victory . . . so what?
A sports editor taught young reporters: "Never say never." We wanted to get a bet down on Joe Nameth and the Jets so much, but we couldn't find a bookie. The fellow at the desk next to us was reported to be a bookie who didn't lay off. We never saw him again. Are there any books about Judge Crater?
If we write the first column that brings up a new topic and that topic (with no reference to where it originated) that goes viral . . . so what? Has a book full of illustrations of "slap art" been published? What art museum will be the first to hold a show spotlighting the "slap art" in contemporary culture?