Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Something About This One Gives Me A Case Of The Warm Fuzzies (One, Two, The!)

Coming to the Sundance Film Festival this year is a little Norwegian horror movie called Dead Snow, and after having had a chance to watch the trailer for it on YouTube, I can honestly say I have a pretty good feeling that this movie is going to be the drop-dead-gorgeous-woman-whose-t-shirt-just-spontaneously-rips-open-to-expose-huge-globous-breasts-that-god-never-intended-to-be-concealed of motion pictures this year. I mean, holy shit, it has zombies, and nazis, and Norwegian women, and zombies, and chainsaws, and a German tagline that beckons people to the multiplex for some foreign cinema gold.

Speaking of the German tagline, if you watch the trailer I just embedded for your viewing pleasure (go ahead and watch it right now; I'll wait), it kicks in at about the 1:30 mark. In German it reads: "Ein, Zwei, Die!" How awesome is that? Oh wait, you don't speak German? I speak it Ein Bisschen (that's German for a little bit), which makes me that much cooler than most people, so I'll translate it into English. In English, that tagline goes, "One, Two, The!" Those Germans, always with the postmodern taglines to their zombie movies.

That kind of reminds me of one of the better episodes of The Simpsons, in which the movie Cape Fear gets spoofed. During a scene that features Sideshow Bob at a hearing to see if he should be paroled for prison this exchange takes place between Bob and a prosecuter...

Prosecutor: What about that tattoo on your chest? Doesn't it say die Bart die?
Sideshow Bob: No, that's German
[unveils tattoo]
Sideshow Bob: for 'The Bart The'.
Parole Board Member: No one who speaks German could be an evil man.

Indeed Parole Board Member, indeed. That's why I think the Nazi zombies in the movie Dead Snow might actually be misunderstood from just watching the trailer. I have a feeling that these Nazi zombies might actually be here to help us.

One, Two, The!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Sure Sign Your Actions Are Influenced By Jackass

Hey there, long time, no see.

So, today I was at work. Dutifully, as usual. And something happened today that more or less scared the shit out of me. It wasn't scary in the sense that a psycho killer with a meat cleaver and a necklace of children's teeth was leaping out from the shadows telling me that he wanted to butt-rape me, though I'm not really sure why I just put all of those elements together in a single sentence, but I will just roll with it. And, now that I think about it, the idea of being stalked by said psycho killer is definitely scary and I will probably have to watch myself at work from now on especially when I am going into darkened areas of the building. But, anyway, where was I?

Okay, so I did get scared at work today. And it was scary in the sense that when I thought about what happened I got scared not because of anything around me, but rather an idea that I almost, almost, almost went through with. And when I tell you this idea that I had you're going to think that I'm an idiot and you'd probably be right, especially if I had actually done this thing that I thought I should do.

So, there I was, doing my rounds around the casino floor, looking for slot machines in need of assistance, customers in distress, beautiful women who only go to casinos on the weekend, psycho killers with meat cleavers and an ass fetish, etc. etc. I found a particular slot machine that had a faulty door. That is to say the machine itself was reporting that its door was open when if you look at the machine you not only see that the door is shut, but if you try to open the door it's definitely shut and locked. This happens from time to time. Slot machines refuse to work properly if it thinks that a door on it is open somewhere. And, to top it off, there was a customer at the machine waiting to play it. So this one had to be fixed.

Usually, to fix one of these problems all one has to do is simply open and close the door and it's kind of like reminding the machine what an open door actually looks like or something like that. I suspect it's more complicated than that. Actually, it is more complicated than that, but if I told you I'd kill you. Not that I'd kill you because it's privileged information, but I'd kill you from boredom because it's a bunch of technical jargon that goes nowhere and really has little bearing on my story or utter fear. Just leave it at when I open the door a team of leprechauns, mounted on unicorns swoop down from atop Mount Bullshit and whisper a special message into a bluetooth headset (leprechauns like to keep up with all the latest technology; I'm not making this shit up) that lets the machine know, "Hey my shit is closed up so let's behave like it is."

So that's what I did with this particular machine. And sure enough, leprechauns and unicorns and bluetooth goodness and the slot machine started working again.





and then back to not working because it is saying that it's main door is open. It's at this point in time I did that thing that Curly from the Three Stooges did whenever he got frustrated with inanimate objects, that sort of self face slap and whine. So I try to open and close the door again, this time with a little more force so as to summon a few extra leprechauns, this time with bluetooth megaphones (oh, you better believe they have those). And, as before it started working again






And more Curly reactions. More frustration. I definitely wanted to help this customer spend all his money.

And then I get to the scary part. Prepare yourself, folks.

So, obviously, opening and closing the slot machine was not a good enough repair job for this particular problem. So what does a logical guy do? Well, I suppose a logical guy would go and find somebody who knows a more permanent fix for the problem. Seems reasonable. What does a weirdo like me do?

Well, I sort of looked around, sizing up chairs in the vicinity and after having determined they were all kind of short I looked at the customer who was waiting to use this malfunctioning machine and I was this close, this close, to asking him, "Sir, how tall are you?"

Why would I ask that, you ask? Well, for a split second, I thought that my next course of action, you know, after opening and closing the door on the slot machines a few times, would be to deliver a flying elbow drop like Randy Macho Man Savage from a great height. For that split second I thought, Okay, I'm just going to get this guy to hoist me up on his shoulders. Then, I'm going to jump, but I have to get some air on the jump and then I'm going to stick my elbow out and smash it the fuck down on top of the slot machine. I mean that would work, right? Logically speaking, that is. It goes: try the most logical thing to fix a problem and then, if that fails, deliver the elbow drop from the top rope a la Randy Macho Man Savage.

Michael, that's not even scary. How is you thinking like a moron supposed to scare the bejesus out of me?

Because the amount of time I was in this idiotic mindset was disproportionately large. Here I am, a man with a university education, giving careful consideration to delivering a flying elbow drop to an inanimate object from atop the shoulders of another man. And this, with a university education! What the fuck?!?! Who does that?

Don't worry folks, I didn't actually go through with it, but after fixing it (I turned the machine off and then back on again, not quite the force of flying elbow drop, not quite the dramatic oomph) I was walking away and that's when I got scared. I almost slapped myself, not like Curly from The Three Stooges, but full-on face slaps going, "What in the hell were you thinking? You can't actually consider a flying elbow drop to a slot machine you're trying to fix! When does a flying elbow drop actually fix anything?!?!"

And what's really scary is that if I can consider this course of action once what's to say that I won't consider it the next time or the time after that? It's keeping me up tonight, folks. It's keeping me up.

So if you're visiting the casino where I work one day and you round a corner and you hear some grown man with a university education exclaim, "Oooooo yeah!" followed by the crunching sound of an elbow shattering inside its sleeve of meat and muscle and bone, you'll know that I finally settled on the most logical step after trying to open and close the door being the elbow drop.

Sleep easy, everybody. An idiot is born.