Wednesday, February 29, 2012
I try to choose my words carefully. That's what writing is all about. Word juggling, phrase painting, mental imaging, writing is intellectual concept construction. Unlike conversation, when you write a word you can take it back, think about it, rewrite it or delete it. Not so in conversation; perhaps one day the digital age will catch up to actual conversation. It would be nice to have a 10 second delay. You could hear what you just said and change the potentially offensive phrase. You would have a chance to take it back, think about, say it again or delete it.
This is not to say that written words always come out right. Trying to write funny is even more difficult because proper timing and delivery is impossible to control. I get it when I write something out of line, even if I thought it was funny. The evil twin of funny is offending someone. It is a razors edge you walk when you try to be funny and not offend someone, sometime, somewhere. If you slip you lick your wounds and keep trying. When I am wrong I will admit it.
With the idea of retractions and do overs, Here are some thoughts:
An anonymous commenter thought I stooped to name calling yesterday. I'm not sure I understand and there was no way to get a clarification from anonymous. I guess it was when I called Rick Santorum
"Recationary Rick". I did not think that was name calling but rather political identification. I could have written Republican Rick or Candidate Rick but I searched for a word that more accurately describes his political leanings. Reactionary was the word I carefully chose. From the dictionary it means:
It makes no difference if I used the word as an adjective or a noun. Even Mr. Santorum describes his position as "extremely conservative" and "an opponent of liberalism''. He is by definition a political Reactionary. So, I do not consider writing "Reactionary Rick" to be stooping " to petty name-calling like any elementary school student would do.".. anonymous.
My name is Jay Johnson and I approved this message.
As you were,
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Monday, February 27, 2012
Two observations from last nights Telecast. The auto mix for Billy Crystal's Oscar, Oscar song was terrible. It might have been funny if we could have heard it. (The winner of the pool was correct on 16 out of 24. It was not my personal best with only 10 out of 24)
1. Best Picture: "The Artist."
2. Actor: Jean Dujardin, "The Artist."
3. Actress: Meryl Streep, "The Iron Lady."
4. Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer, "Beginners."
5. Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer, "The Help."
6. Directing: Michel Hazanavicius, "The Artist."
7. Foreign Language Film: "A Separation," Iran.
8. Adapted Screenplay: Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, "The Descendants."
9. Original Screenplay: Woody Allen, "Midnight in Paris."
10. Animated Feature Film: "Rango."
11. Art Direction: "Hugo."
12. Cinematography: "Hugo."
13. Sound Mixing: "Hugo."
14. Sound Editing: "Hugo."
15. Original Score: "The Artist."
16. Original Song: "Man or Muppet" from "The Muppets."
17. Costume Design: "The Artist."
18. Documentary Feature: "Undefeated."
19. Documentary Short: "Saving Face."
20. Film Editing: "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo."
21. Makeup: "The Iron Lady."
22. Animated Short Film: "The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore."
23. Live Action Short Film: "The Shore."
24. Visual Effects: "Hugo."
As you were,
Sunday, February 26, 2012
Saturday, February 25, 2012
Friday, February 24, 2012
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Jay: Hello Siri.. can you tell me what kind of day it is today?
Siri: The time is 8:51AM
Jay: Not the time of day, that's displayed on my phone... I want to know the kind of day it is.
Siri: Definition of kind:. A group of individuals or instances sharing common traits; a category or sort: different kinds of furniture; a new kind of politics.n. A doubtful or borderline member of a given category: fashioned a kind of shelter; a kind of bluish color.
Jay: No, ~beep~Not the definition of kind....
Siri: Definition of Unkind:
Jay: No, no... I just want to know if it is going to be a good day.
Siri: Good Day to you as well.
Jay: Not good bye. Good day...Will it be a good day?
Siri: What is good to some is not good for others. If you are experiencing a drought a rainy day is a good day, if you are in a flood it would be a bad day. Would you like me to contact a therapist office in your area, or would you like me to locate the doctors/ hospitals and nurses closest to your current position?
Jay: I get it. Let me rephrase. ~beep~ What is the weather today?
Siri: It will be snowy and cold with a wind chill factor of -23 Celsius for most of the day in Lucern, Switzerland.
Jay: Siri, I don't live in Lucern, I live in Los Angeles.
Siri: I would like permission to use your current location information.
Jay: Okay... so?
Siri: Sew, "A needle pulling thread" one lyric to the song "Do Re Me" from "The Sound of Music" by Rogers and Hammerstein. Original cast recording of the Broadway cast can be found at the following locations.
Jay: All I want to know is, if it is a good day to walk the dog?
Siri: Wok Dog is a delicacy in some cultures in Asia. Would you like me to locate the best recipe?
Jay: No, cancel. ~beep~ What is the weather forecast?
Siri: Would you like me to use your current location?
Siri: I would like permission to use your current location information.
Jay: I already gave you permission. I said Okay
Siri: OK, the abbreviation for Oklahoma, a state best known for the Musical of the same name by Rogers and Hammerstein the prototype for all musical theater of the modern era. You seem to be a fan of Rogers and Hammerstein. Would you like me to list the current performance schedule of "Oklahoma" playing nearest your current location? Would you also like me to locate the the costume shops closest to where you are now?
Jay: No, All I want to know is what kind of day it will be and is it a good day to take my.... pet on a stroll.
Siri: "Pet on a roll", slang for a cat meat served on flat bread, a delicacy in some Asian cultures. You seem to like Asian food so I have found several Asian restaurants in your area of Lucern... none of them serve Wok Dog.
Jay: Los Angeles... I live in Los Angeles.
Siri: Checking Los Angeles... I can find no restaurants that serve dog. There is a Pinks that serves Hot Dog. Will that be acceptable?
Jay: Forget the whole thing. I'll just go outside and see what the weather is for myself. Good Bye Siri.
Siri: Good bye. Have a great day. It will be perfect for a walk. Perhaps if you have a pet you can take him/her/it out on an adventure. Have fun in Lucern.... wear a heavy coat.
Jay: Bite me.
Siri: Bite me" was a low budget movie about vampires produced in the exploitation movie era of the American 60's
As you were,
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Monday, February 20, 2012
Friday, February 17, 2012
Thursday, February 16, 2012
As I write this I have no concept of time.I have reached a point of complete fatigue that can no longer comprehend time. At home it is yesterday evening. Locally it is 6:45am on Feb 17th in Sydney, Australia, but my body clock is still on Perth time after a red-eye plane trip. It will be a 6 hour lay over here in Sydney and then a 12-14 hour flight home. After 24 hours we will land in Los Angeles at 6:25am on Feb 17th, my current time. If my body clock is screwed up now, I can't imagine how dysfunctional it will be in 24 hours, when I will once again repeat this day.
Before we caught our late night plane in Perth we walked around Fremantle. At one o'clock in the afternoon they shoot off a canon at the "round house". That is a stone building on the coast that was the first settlement. It looks like a fort but was actually a jail. I think the distinction is functional rather than structural. The docent told us that they built the jail first and then the church. He said you can tell the locals from the tourist in Fremantle at 1:00. The canon is very loud when it goes off and a tourist will duck and flinch... a local will simply look at his watch.
One of the world travelers on the ship said that dealing with Australians is very easy. He said you simply think of them as Texans. I am not exactly sure what that means. Having been born in Texas perhaps I am too close to the metaphor to understand. It could explain why I feel very much at home down under. I really do love these people. They are a very friendly lot, ready with a quick "G'day" and "No Worries". Sort of like Brits without the cucumber up their arss. Or perhaps rednecks that talk funny. I don't know what it is, really, but I feel like I could live here fairly comfortably.
Their economy seems to be doing rather well. The American dollar has lost a lot to the Australian dollar since the last time I was here. In Sydney construction cranes are at work everywhere, and the city is bustling. The locals are defensive about the image Paul Hogan created for Australians with his Crocodile Dundee character. I guess it would be the equivalent of thinking that all Americans are like Larry the Cable Guy, although I think there may be more of him around than I want to admit.
So now we only have five and a half hours till we board the flight home. Must close my eyes for a minute and see if I can pass the time in suspended animation. More later.
As you were,
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
There is an iPad class on board taught by a friend we did not know was on the ship. He wrangled me into going to the class and "helping" out. It meant running around the auditorium showing newbies how to tap a screen or in some cases turn it on. It required none of my Mac skills but was fun.
As you were
Sunday, February 12, 2012
I have written two blogs over the last three days that have vanished into the ether. One was published and never showed up. The other one just vanished on my screen. I don't know why this has happened but I blame it on the recent rise in popularity of Rick Santorum.
I will try again later in the day but doubt that this problem will be solved until I reach dry land, or the Republican Primary which ever comes first.
As you were,
Thursday, February 09, 2012
It has been difficult to post blogs sailing here on the Tazman sea. The ship's wifi has been unreliable and not always available in our cabin. Cell phone reception is non existent on this ship. I find a hot spot only to discover the satellite is down. The computer tech on board claims that the solar storms are affecting the receiption because we are sailing so close to the south pole. Evidently there is nothing that can be done about it until we sail closer to the equator. He suggested that because of the angle of the sun, the best time to grab a signal was 7:30 in the morning.
I love to post the blog, but I have to tell you that I love to sleep in even more. So if I miss a post or two in the next 12 days, you will know why.
The sea was choppy today, which they say is typical of these waters this time of year. We sail through rain and patches of clearing so the weather changes almost hourly.
A Discovery Channel film crew is on board doing a doumentary on the Great Sailing ships of the world. They seem to be very efficient. Leaving Sydney harbor they had a camera man on the pilot boat, one in a helicopter and several time lapse cameras rolling on the bow. It was a beautiful sail out by the Harbor bridge and the Sydney opera house. The film crew will be sailing with various ships for the next year before the doc. is finished.
It will be several more days before I perform. This is a great schedule for me since I am just another passenger until after my show. After my performance it is difficult to be on a ship occupied by the audience I just performed for. There is rarely a case when anyone is rude, Normally they are just fans who want to engage in conversation. I just have to be on guard and know that anytime I am out of the cabin I am really performing again. It is much easier with Sandi along. Even a fan will respect your privacy if you are involved in a family conversation. Of course Sandi is more than a convenient shill, it is great to have her along. She finds out all the cool stuff to do in the ports of call and gets me out of my shell to have some fun. More later.
As you were,
Wednesday, February 08, 2012
Corporate show business is different from other forms of "the business". Most obviously the venue. It is usually a performance in a banquet hall or a hotel ballroom. Dressing rooms, green rooms or just holding areas are usually impromptu and sometimes the unused room next to the banquet event. Such was the case over the week end when I performed for a fund raising gala. They needed to find some space for my "staging area/dressing room". In the emails back and forth it was determined I could use "Birdie's Room" for this function.
The names of ballrooms are mostly themed out in line with the decor of the hotel, but it is also not unusual to name them after people. So Birdie's Room did not sound unusual to me.
I arrived at the venue and asked directions to Birdie's Room. I received a blank look from the bellman. Thinking that he was new I went up to the desk clerk and asked the same question. He asked if Birdie was a guest at the hotel because they didn't have a room with that name.
I explained that Birdie was not a guest, but the name of the room I was instructed to go to and wait for my show. I mentioned the name of the organization I was performing for which rang a bell to the clerk. He told me where that show would be. I mentioned Birdie's room was to be my holding area near that ballroom. He said once again that they did not have a Birdie's room but understood I would need some where to be before my performance. He would find a space for me to use.
He signaled the clueless Bellman over and told him to take me to room 729 on the convention level. He said it would be right across from the place where I would be performing. I am confused why they had sent me an email to go to Birdie's Room if there was no such room at the place when obviously this other room would be perfect.
The bellman opens the door of 729, a conference size room with a comfortable couch, mirrors and frilly wall paper. The bellman says, "It is a little girlie colored I'm afraid. Normally we use this for weddings, we call it the BRIDES Room".
It was at this moment that my mistake came clear. There was no shock wave of laughter this time only unrequited humiliation. Dyslexia is the gift that keeps on giving. It is not so much that I get words wrong, it's the fact that once I have miss read it, I will keep making the same mistake over and over unless it is specifically pointed out to me. It is just something that I have to look out for and try to manage.
Thursday, February 02, 2012
|Robert Mandan, Bob Campbell, Jay Johnson, Jay Sandrich|
Opening night of "Jay Johnson: The Two and Only"
|Robert Mandan in "Barney Miller"|
|Chester Tate and Benson|
|Bob Mandan on "Three's a Crowd"|
|Bob Mandan on "Star Trek,The Next Generation"|
|Robert Mandan Movie of the Week|