Saturday, February 24, 2007

Big Yellow Taxi

I planned to bring down our brand new treadmill since last week but I’m just too lazy to do it just yet. I prefer to call it brand new even though it’s been gathering dust living in the loft for about two years. I could count the number of times that I’ve used it with my fingers and I don’t even have to use both hands. It’s a Saturday and it’s my first day off since we had our holidays last week. I’m lucky to be given the weekend off to be quite honest. So I had a very prolonged lie-in this morning. I work really hard in hospital, and I deserve some peace and just be slothful today. I will start milling about on a conveyor belt like a fat Uramaki roll in a sushi bar tomorrow.

With one skilled swipe on cold water that’s been dripping overnight from the faucet, at the same time making a mental note: need to ring the plumber, also take care of environment ho-hum, wiped the dry skank off my eyes, grabbed jacket and I was out to buy morning paper. The Independent Saturday Edition comes with a FREE hardback. Today’s freebie is “A Clockwork Orange” by Anthony Burgess. I’ve seen the movie version by Stanley Kubrick in one of those art house theatres that shows independent and foreign films 4 years ago, but can’t quite comprehend the dialogues as the characters speak in weird gibberish. The random acts of violence portrayed in the movie are all done to the strains of rip-roaring orchestral music by Beethoven that just reinforced my intuition: Classical music is made for torture. I learnt later that the movie was made in the 70's. The clever use of soundtrack is quite a landmark for films at that time and I don't know, it may have influenced modern day directors like Guy Ritchie or Quentin Tarantino. The newspaper will be featuring 25 more from a collection of Banned Books that have, “over the years been banned, censored, stifled, blue-pencilled, expurgated or burned in public. Their survival is a triumph of independent thought over the forces of repression, and a reminder of how exhilarating fiction at the cutting edge of the imagination can be.” So the paper says. I can’t wait what's next Saturday’s is.

( I'm going out to buy a newspaper. Ain't I clever to put the first picture in the end? Yup. The pictures should be viewed from the bottom up. That's how the story goes, really. )

A sad New Yorker decided to make a humongous political statement about the environment just like Joni Mitchell in her hit song “Big Yellow Taxi”: (all together now) “they paved paradise and put up the parking lot blah-blah…” I quite like the version by Counting Crows and Vanessa Carlton doing just the mmm-bop part. Whoever did this is probably just as homesick as I am. What would they think if I do the same thing with a tricycle in tacky paint work? I wonder if it’s legal to dump a decomposing old car in the middle of a driveway.
I’m definitely not getting inside a 70’s memorabilia.

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Blogger Talamasca said...

Whoa! Clockwork Orange! The movie wasn't as good as the book, but was only made excellent by Mcdowell's amazing performance as the young Alex who's primary interest is rape, ultra-violence and Beethoven. Totally remorseless, yet managed to shine Alex's youthful vulnerability through all the menace... Mcdowell did an amazing job here y'all!

"Oh bliss! Bliss and heaven! Oh, it was gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh. It was like a bird of rarest-spun heaven metal or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now. As I slooshied, I knew such lovely pictures!"

Yeah. Love it to bits woo hoo!

Big Yellow Taxi? Counting Crows AND Vanessa Carlton? Huh? Vanessa was part of the song, singing and all? Like, oh my gawd really? Bwahahahahahaha! ;-p

8:50 PM  
Blogger vernaloo said...

hey Howling...

glad you had your "day off". at least you get to rest. I know you work hard.

10:47 PM  
Blogger Alternati said...

A Clockwork Orange...

Malcolm Mcdowell, false lashes, the white overalls, the hat, the cane, the violence... what's not to love about the movie huh? I haven't read the book yet, but I did go gaga over the movie. It's dark and twisted. It's one of those rare movies that remind me I'm still not totally jaded. The random acts of violence just affect you. Kubrick is brilliant!

I am a Joni Mitchell junkie. I just adore her folksy music. The laugh she does in the Big Yellow Taxi track is priceless! Chelsea Morning and Coyote are personal faves.

9:34 AM  
Anonymous pining said...

funny enough, I saw that paper, I was gonna get it because of the freebie (I'm a sucker for this) but I already have the book so I decided not to.. I opted for the daily wail instead, the only paper I buy (on Saturdays, that is).. regarding the sequence of your pics... very clever!

12:24 PM  
Anonymous Shari said...

So...It's official. I'm the only one who doesn't know about "A Clockwork Orange." Yay go me! A collection of Banned Books should be fun and interesting.

I like both version of Big Yellow Taxi. :p

9:33 PM  
Blogger howling said...

talamasca: I won't be surprised if 'Clockwork' will be in your top 5 favourite films of all time! LOL. It is indeed a brilliant movie, although I grovelled on a few of the most violent scenes. I just like Kubrick though. And I have to say my favourite movie remains to be "2001: The Space Odyssey". His previous work. This is the reason why.

vernaloo: Oh, thank you. You're one of the few who truly understand my place in this world. I'll keep a soft spot for you. Bless!

alternati: I do agree with you. Mcdowell's character in the movie is very iconic indeed. I have yet to read the book as well. As soon as I get over a backlog of about 3 more books I'm stuck on bits of first chapters each. LOL! You like Joni Mitchell? Oh, well. Smart hippie chicks in sandals are quite hot.

pining Tell me about it. I love collecting them too. Hahaha! I would raid newstands and pick even a 'rubbish' paper if it has a free CD/DVD on it. My partner loves The Daily Mail like her cuppa tea. I'd hold back on 'Daily Sport' though. LOL!

shari Oh, don't worry dear. You're not the only one who doesn't know about it. It's quite a controversial film and been banned in a lot of countries. It was given an X-rating in the States and taken off cinemas after a few screenings even in Britain where it was made and only re-released in 2000 after Kubrick's death. I'm quite sure you've read a few banned books as well. LOL!

3:54 PM  
Blogger The Screaming Nutcase said...

You have to be in the right mood to watch Clockwork Orange. I wasn't and I just saw a horrible, pointless film. I know that makes me the minority, but....

7:39 PM  
Anonymous aCey said...

i really don't understand why my friends won't let me see kubrick's clockwork orange yet. hehe. even our tv production teacher warned us about it... hehe!

5:37 AM  
Blogger beajerry said...

A Clockwork Orange is one of my Kubrick faves.

I thought about it the other day when the news was doing a showing a security camera of teens beating up a homeless man.
Life imitates art, or art predicts life?

10:21 AM  
Anonymous Shari said...

Now I'm intrigued. I want to watch this movie. Bah! If only I can find it. I don't think I've read a banned book ever. :( Uhm, Shanghai Baby was banned in China and I'm planning to read it. Would that count? :p

9:14 PM  
Anonymous Ferdz said...

You only have a muffin for breakfast?!!

That's cool! Those are freebies when you buy a newspaper? I hope we get to do something like that here.

Love the yellow taxi by the way.

7:53 PM  
Anonymous snglguy said...

Hmmm, what happened to my comment?

1:07 AM  
Anonymous snglguy said...

Anyways, what I wrote was; When A Clocwork Orange first came out in the theaters, viewers then were shocked (some even cringed) at the on-screen violence. Little did they know that those violent scenes would be considered as "tame" by today's standards.

1:17 AM  
Anonymous Modesty said...

This is great info to know.

4:54 PM  

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