Survival blessings

Reintroduction to the dollar cinema

There is a work crew come from American Electric Power to install new electric conduit in the ground up and down Shanley Drive. They use this weird machine that looks like a magazine of steel pipes atop a caterpillar tread to inject the pipe horizontally along the ground. It’s a cool thing to watch.

The trouble is, they’ve knocked out the power to the apartment buildings on the north side of Shanley. I hate power failures. The one caused by the windstorm last September is still fresh in my mind. After working an extra nine-hour shift yesterday, this is not what I wanted to happen on what’s supposed to be a day of relaxation.

So, I decided for the first time in several months to go out and see a movie. The The Screens at the Continent in northern Columbus still show second-run movies and charge only $1.00 admission on Wednesdays, and The Dark Knight was showing there. This is clearly the darkest-themed Batman movie I have ever seen. Alfred (Michael Caine) was right when he said some people “just want to see the world burn” when he spoke of the Joker (Heath Ledger). Ledger’s Joker is a delicious psychopath who has mastered Batman’s trademark trick of showing up in the most unexpected places almost magically. At times, he reminds me of Jack Black, and I think that if Christopher Nolan has need of the Joker in future Batman films, he would do well to cast Jack Black.

What I find particularly interesting is the social experiment he conducts near the end of the movie. The Joker captures two groups of people on two ferries laden with explosives and rigged to blow to smithereens, a group of relatively honest Gotham City citizens on one ferry, and a group of rounded up mobsters on the other. Both ferries are set to explode at midnight, but the honest Gotham citizens have been given a detonator to the explosives on the other ferry, and have the option of saving themselves by blowing up the ferry filled with mobsters before midnight. Do they have the guts to do it?

I think a recurring theme in the whole movie the possibility that a hero will go over the edge and become a murderer in his crusades for justice. It happens to Harvey Dent, whom Bruce Wayne had been counting on to relieve Gotham City of its need for Batman, and it nearly happens to Bruce Wayne himself.

Survival blessings

The first thing I’d like to say is that I find it remarkable how God is helping me hang in there. He sends me free mechanical work on my brakes. He sends me a few extra days of work, and He keeps me from being sent home before the entire scheduled day of work is done. And He helps me to some measure take food out of the survival equation, too.

The recession, painful though it is and threatening to blossom into Great Depression II, has largely spared me, and even benefits me by giving me ¾ of a tank of gasoline for $15.00.

Now, not everyone is going to be this blessed of God. What can this guardian angel bear do for America? Anything?

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