Friday, May 27, 2005

Episode III and Nobody Knows How Blind I Am

Now I definitely want to talk about some caddie-type stuff that went on today, but first I need talk about this movie I saw recently. "Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith." Quite a mouthful. Now I'm pretty confident that NONE of you have heard of it. It's a relatively unknown independent film series that started before I was born and will probably still be going on LONG after I die.

To start, I think I should preface this little rant by saying that I DID enjoy the original Star War's movies (Episodes IV, V, VI). I wouldn't consider myself to be OBSESSED with them, but I DID watch them a whole bunch of times and even had some dialogue committed to memory. I think it's fair to say that any NORMAL American male between the ages of 18-50 could say the same.

So okay, I was a fan. Now let's be honest, the first two prequels were far from amazing. They did have some good scenes, yes, but for the most part they bombed. But I mean hey, after the original series the standards were set so high that I don't think Lucas could've impressed an audience even AFTER insisting that every onlooker give themselves CGI-enemas before they sat down.

I was having some trouble figuring out what I really didn't like about this third movie and it finally hit me: it all comes down to the writing. A script is where it all starts. If the script sucks, I don't care how many special effects or sex scenes you have (but please, try these things and send me the videos), you're still just putting "whipped cream on shit." That's why movies like "Sideways" blew critics out of the water. A movie that had some substance WITHOUT special effects? What a concept!

Now I'm not saying that "Sideways" was flawless. I liked it, yes (although I still can't understand why people term it a "comedy"...I mean the movie's about a guy trying to get over a two-year depression), but it still had some very predictable scenes and dialogue.

As far as the writing, Lucas's scripts for Episodes IV, V and VI were all full of things to appreciate: complex characters, rich dialogue, inner conflicts, etc etc. Now I suppose you could make an argument for the prequels, saying they're actually "written well," but then I would ask you to explain some of the dialogue:

Master Kenobi: "The Sith Lord is evil!"

Anakin: "From my perspective, the Jedi are evil!"


Now I could understand the flow of this dialogue--MAYBE--if this came up in a University debate or something. But here are two guys fighting over a sea of LAVA. I think just saying "The Jedi are evil" would've sufficed. I mean come on. Anakin, we KNOW it's from your perspective. Why formalize your argument while fighting over an active VOLCANO?

Use the force/backspace-key George Lucas.

Count Dooku: "I've been looking forward to this."

Anakin: "As have I. My powers have doubled since we last met."


I mean come ON. You can't take someone seriously when they start talking about their powers "doubling." How can Anakin quantify his skill? And how could a skill level off around 200%? That would be like Tiger Woods saying to the cameras: "My skills have doubled since The Masters."

In Episode III, Lucas really enjoyed setting up his audience for a fight scene. But his love for elaborate fight scenes didn't start in Episode III. As another example, take this quote from Episode II.

Count Dooku: "It is obvious this contest cannot be decided by our knowledge of the force, but by our skills with a lightsaber."


I don't know. I'm going to stop this rant about Star Wars because I don't feel like I have the background or expertise to accurately pontificate...oh who am I kidding. I just don't care anymore. But I think you know where I'm going with this. Lucas likes to point out the obvious in his new movies. I mean call me old-fashioned, but I actually like to THINK a little bit when I go to the movies. I don't need EVERYTHING explained to me. I mean that's just insulting.

So caddying. That's what this site is about. So let's get to it.

Today was slow. The course has been closed the last couple of days to allow for the all-important "aerification" to take place. So predictably, on the first day that the course was open, NOBODY wanted to play. Let's face it: these members are used to playing on SICK greens (that's ski-bum slang for "wicked awesome"). They aren't about to come and play a course that looks like crap.

Sand was everywhere. Some of the fairways should've been equipped with rakes. I know. YES. This has to be done. Little holes need to be poked into this course. Little dirt-turds need to line the tee-boxes and the greens need to be BROWN.

A necessary evil. But thanks to this "necessity," nobody came to play today. I sat around in the caddie room from 8-12. Then I was given the signal to grab some lunch. Got back around 12:30. By 1:30, I farted several times, which felt good. People were playing cards. The 1997 Master's tape was in the VCR. Somebody challenged me to a putting contest on the concrete.

And then I was called to action. I was teamed up with the crack-head wonder again. We'd be carrying two bags a-piece, and we had some course-owners to work with today.

One of the guys I caddied for was a "board member" for a nearby course, and the other was its General Manager. And yes, I learned this information on 17. I never really "talked" to these guys for most of the round. And believe me, it wasn't a conscious choice.

It was an unconscious one.

Sorry, I had to say that.

But to give you a little more background on me, I'm pretty much blind. I wasn't born that way. I just sort of evolved into the squinting, contact wearing freak I am today by staring at the microwave as a child. Little did I know that someday those waves would give me "special" powers: they would give me the power to be "special." I would have the worst pair of eyes EVER. Yes, I also got into web design when I was 13 so I was in front of a computer screen at an early age (don't think I remember HALF of the stuff I learned back then), but I bet those microwaves had the biggest influence. I was fascinated by those damn things.

When I finally had my first eye-exam I started spouting off NUMBERS to the doctor.

"Tom, just relax now. They're all letters."

"Well then just give me glasses! Can't you see I need help! Butt-hole!"

Snickers put out a great commercial a while back where all of these referee's are getting eye-exams and the one ref in the chair starts by saying, "Umm F, B... Large cow..."

"No, they're just letters, okay?"

"B, E... Small cow?"

Now I'm not sure what my eyesight is in 20/20 terms. But I can tell you it's -8.00 for my left contact and something over -6.00 for my right contact. Yeah. It's way bad. All those with good eyesight make me sick. MAN I need to get laser surgery.

So I guess to prevent making a long story even longer, I haven't been wearing my contacts because I scratched one of my eyes pretty bad a while back and I'm letting my eyes heal before I put my contacts back in.

Well, my eyes are NOT better.

I found that out on the 3rd hole when the wind started picking up. All kinds of crap started blowing into my eyes. My left eye instantly went bloodshot. Then my eyes started spasming and trying to close, and for some reason my LEFT contact thought it would be a good idea to do the electric slide on my eyeball. Now I could still see out of my right eye, but with all of this stuff going on in my left eye I was just DISTRACTED.

On the fourth tee, one of my players took a nice divot. I mean really nice. It was one of those divots people take home to manicure so they can practice their putting. Dirt, sand, and pieces of your mom flew everywhere. And by "everywhere" I mean my LEFT eye.

"Oh my God. It's just not fair."

"What's not fair Tom?"


I completely forgot where I was for three holes because my contacts were moving around so much that I honestly FORGOT WHERE I WAS.

I still can't believe the guys' I ended up caddying for didn't say anything to me when I started moving my head around like Stevie Wonder. It was a combination of looking around to see something and cringing at the wind every time it got into my left eye again. I Probably looked more like a crack-addict than Stevie Wonder. Or maybe I AM a crack addict. That could be true too.

I'm also pretty amazed that I was somehow able to caddie for a while without any depth-perception. But I'd find shortcuts. Players would throw their balls' to me on the greens to be cleaned and I'd look away, pretending that I didn't see them throw the ball to begin with. Oh, how slick am I. Now I don't have to catch them.

Fortunately (or unfortunately), by the 9th hole my left contact started to fuse to my eyeball. So no more electric slide. Now it was more like a bear hugging a tree.

And speaking of bears, what's the Spanish word for "bear"? That was a crossword question today and nobody seemed to know it. Wow that was random.

But now that I think about it, so is this quote from Family Guy.

"Awkward moment? I'll give you an awkward moment: One time during sex I accidentally called Lois 'Frank.' Your move Sherlock."

Man what a great show.

So I'm twitching, blinking uncontrollably, and I feel like the foursome is moving slower than a fly stuck in syrup. And after that comment I probably belong on the Beverly Hillbillies or something. But first I need to finish. I'm almost there. I can taste it.

The other caddie was slow again. I felt bad, itched my eye, talked to these guys about visiting the course they currently own/run, and before you knew it, 6 hours later, we were on 15. Man these guys were slow. But I did envy them a bit. I mean, they WERE just taking their time. Every shot was a new mystery just waiting to be unravelled. And I definitely enjoyed the tip I received. So all in all, my left eye will be crying itself to sleep tonight, but at least I got some work today. Most of the other caddies were sent home.


Steele Harder said...

Great post. I'm there with you on the whole Star Wars deal. But if I hear one more person spout off about when Lea says to Han "I love you" and Han replies "I know" and how that was all adlibbed, like they were the person to discover that little piece of crap, I'm going to puke. Anyway, I've got bad eyes too...I challenge anyone to top -13 in both eyes. so contacts on the golf course, mixed with wind and dirt turds, just doesn't work.

Keep it up Jam Boy.

Jam Boy said...

-13, huh? I gotta give you props for that. That's impressive. And yeah. I don't consider myself to be a Star Wars expert...I just feel like movies these days are nothing more than highlight reels of what producers THINK people want to see. I'd like to see more originality out there.

BuffaloGolfer.Com said...

On NPR the other day, some wise guy talked about how tv series (Alias, 24, et al.) are so intricate, compared with their ancestors (Maude, Happy Days, blah blah blah) that they hold us spellbound. I agree. That is, I concur.

Lucas is a story-teller and, I imagine, a control-freak at that. Much like the occasionally-lame SNL skit that goes on three minutes past the humor, Lucas cannot cede control of dialogue to writers who know how to . . . dialogue. That is, to converse.

I get the bad eye thing when I've been driving too long, especially at night. I don't wear contacts any more (I wear glasses. Often.) The lines on the road blur, my wife says "what the f%$# is up?," and I drool. It is a bitch. I feel your pain. That is, I sympathize with you. I empathize, I commiserate, my idiolect has doubled since our last meeting.

One last thought: Why does Count Dookuu have a Sesame Street name? I mean, you have Maul, Sidious, and Vader . . . could anyone say Darth Dookuu with a straight face? It's alliteration, after all. Not that you could post up against Sidious and say, yo bitch, give me a hard-core sith name, there're only two of us, after all.

BuffaloGolfer.Com said...

By the way, the Spanish word for bear is OSO.