Drive-in Friday: 80’s Classics

As I continue to navigate the relationship conundrum that had eluded me in the past, I also continue to pursue my interest in writing about movies and TV shows.

I read in “Goodbye Facebook, it’s (not really) been real” that writing  blogs is becoming a dying “art”, but if this is correct, then there is symmetry since I am slowly becoming an endangered species. In the mean time, I will continue to chronicle my tales laced with some commentary about the TV show or movie currently on my radar and hope to at least entertain the readers of this blog.

The tales that began with the “Broke A$$ Summer” in 2017 are my personal chronicles of the past years. At this point in these chronicles is the end February of 2018, I have not met my new girlfriend’s mother, and she was waiting for her landlord to finish getting her new apartment ready. The waiting added strain and stress in her life (like she needed more), since she was staying with her mother and sister in a small apartment and the space was very limited.

All in all, she was happy enough because she was talking about going on a trip for Spring Break. Her autistic son has never been in a long trip before, and this was the first time going away for a couple of days and she wanted me to go as well. I have not been on a trip in a while and agreed to go.

This was a year of firsts and doing things not done in a while, and breaking the monotony and routine was difficult.

Until then, I was back at my throne (my old-and-worn-out reclining chair) on a classic-drive-in-kinda-of-mood after receiving a package from my friends at Amazon (unpaid advertising).

Knightriders (1981)

This movie resembles the Hoggetowne Medieval Faire mentioned in a previous post (link), as many adults flock these places in search of some mythical fantastic land full of magic, heroes, and some ale that may blur the reality of everyday life.

However, instead of horses, the knights jousted in motorcycles, but they traveled through towns in medieval fashion as a caravan preceded by the knights riding in their motorcycles setting the mood in each town they visited.

There was a king (Ed Harris; Westworld, 2016-2020; Nixon, 1995; Apollo 13, 1995; The Abyss, 1989; The Right Stuff, 1983), a queen (Amy Ingersoll; Splash, 1984), a young runaway (Patricia “Pat” Tallman; Babylon 5, 1995–1998; Night of the Living Dead, 1990; and several appearances in various Star Trek shows and movies as an unaccredited character, or as a stunt person), a male Morgana (Tom Savini; Machete, 2010; Dawn of the Dead, 2004;  From Dusk Till Dawn, 1996; Dawn of the Dead, 1978), a court of knights, jugglers and other common folk, a black Little John (Ken Foree; Dawn of the Dead, 1978 & Dawn of the Dead, 2004; The X-Files, 1995, S3.E5; Babylon 5, 1995, S2.E10), a fray conveniently named “Tuck” (John Hostetter; Beverly Hills Cop II, 1987; Heartbreak Ridge, 1986; and No Way Out, 1987), and a cameo by Stephen King (a good friend of director’s George A. Romero).

Directed by George A. Romero (1940-2017), legendary for Night of the Living Death (1968) and Dawn of the Dead (1978) that separated the zombie lore from the typical horror movie of the time, and his work was influential in the cultural sensation (or obsession) with the undead.

Furthermore, his work created a very profitable faceless villain (or not). as these zombies can be anybody and over the last 30 plus years had made their mark on media and culture with popular shows like The Walking Dead (2010-present) and iZombie (2015-present), movies like the Dawn of the Dead remake in 2004, Night of the Living Dead (1990) (directed by Tom Savini), the Resident Evil Series (2002-?), 28 days Later (2002), Zombieland (2009), and Shaun of The Dead (2004), books like The Zombie Survival Guide (2003), and World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War (2006), and a plethora of conspiracy theories, cults, and other amusing happenings related to the “undead”.

Knightriders is an entertaining mix of pretended fantasy with a mild form of biker-outlaw attitude, all wrapped up in typical 80’s style movie; full of dangerous fun, meaningless sex, lots of cynicism, and yet a classical tragedy ending.

Streets of Fire (1984)

I missed this movie in the theaters, but there were plenty of music videos (when MTV actually played videos) to see and a lot of airplay in the radio.

It was the video era, and the movie was simply a full-length video full of color shades splashed with some black and white, lots of music, plenty of guns, bikers, gangs, and fights wrapped up in a classic hero rescues heroine.

Some of its cast became celebrities like Diane Lane (Hollywoodland, 2006; The Perfect Storm, 2000; Murder at 1600, 1997; Judge Dredd, 1995; Chaplin, 1992); Bill Paxton (1955-2017), (U-571, 2000; Vertical Limit, 2000; Twister, 1996; Apollo 13, 1995; Aliens, 1986); Willem Dafoe (John Carter, 2012; Spider-Man 3, 2007; Inside Man, 2006; Spider-Man 2, 2004; Spider-Man, 2002; Shadow of the Vampire, 2000; Clear and Present Danger, 1994; Platoon, 1986), Amy Madigan (Fringe, 2008-2013; Carnivale, 2003-2005; The Day After, 1983); and Rick Moranis (Strange Brew, 1983; Ghostbusters, 1984; Brewster’s Millions, 1985; Spaceballs, 1987; Ghostbusters II, 1989)

However, the non-typical hero of the movie, Michael Pare (The Greatest American Hero, 1981-1983) and believed at the time that he was destined to stardom (coming from the  popular television show) never happened and his career fizzled as the 80’s era came to an end.

He had a few good movies like The Philadelphia Experiment (1984), Eddie and The Cruisers (1983) (the sequel was awful) and among my favorites, as I must confess that I am a child of the 80’s and not ashamed of it.

He also did some awful movies like Moon 44 (1990), Eddie and The Cruisers 2: Eddie Lives! (1989), but despite not becoming famous like some of his cast members, Pare has steadily continued to work and has built a long list of credits mostly in B-type movies and appearances in several TV shows.

Directed by Walter Hill who also directed The Warriors (1979), ), 48 Hours (1982), Brewster’s Millions (1985), Red Heat (1988), Another 48 Hours (1990), and the first episode of the HBO show Deadwood (2004).

Hill other notable credits are as a scriptwriter, producer, or storywriter in the Alien (1979- ?) series and prequels (Alien: Covenant, 2017).

The Commitments (1991)

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I saw the previews for this movie on The Seaskel and Ebert show (back when they were in the weekend’s afternoon at WGN, but had to wait until it came out on video years later since there were no showings in the Island theaters.

This movie was one of the few music movies that I can stomach.

Others like Streets of Fire (1984), The Doors (1991), and the miniseries Never Tear Us Apart: The Untold Story of INXS (2014) were entertaining without becoming another silly musical.

It has a story and the music is just part of the experience along with some good cinematography, as it featured Dublin, Ireland’s locations and music scene.

It featured Andrew Strong’s raspy, strong, and powerful voice along with a great musical ensemble that included Angeline Ball, Maria Doyle Kennedy (Orphan Black, 2013-2017; Dexter, Season 5, 2010), Bronagh Gallagher, and Niamh Kavanagh (vocals only) that did great renditions of soul classics like “Mustang Sally”, “Chain of Fools”, “Tenderness”, “Take Me To The River”, and “In The Midnight Hour” to mention some. The movie also featured Colm Meany (Star Trek:TNG, 1987-1994; and DS9 1993-1999), and Andrea Corr a member of the Irish pop/rock/Celtic musical group The Corrs

Directed by Allan Parker (Midnight Express, 1978; Fame, 1980; Mississippi Burning, 1988)

Next: Eureka

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Sons of Anarchy (2008-2014)

While searching for something to watch, I passed over this show a few times over the years in Amazon Prime. I read some of the reviews and decided to give the show a chance this time.

After seen the pilot episode, I understood the appeal of the show and for movies like ”Easy Rider”(1969), for the allure of bikers and outlaws is part of American culture.

It is that sense of freedom and mayhem that goes back to the days of the expanding frontier in America that also made Western movies and shows popular and becoming part of the American culture too.

The appeal to be “free” that also motivated people to risk everything for that “freedom” goes as far as the days of the colonization of the Americas.

However, adding to this appeal is the main operation of SAMCRO (Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club, Redwood Original) as gunrunners, thus adding another flavor of the American culture to the mix, and creating an entertaining show that lasted seven seasons.

Guns are part of America’s culture, as much as it has become a forbidden subject because of recent events, and it would not change by the will of a group of people who want eradicate it like everything else they do not like.

Moreover, through history and understanding the appeal of this show, is very clear that forcing people to do what they do not want only makes their will stronger and their might will not fade.

Only understanding the passions that drives every faction and putting them aside in order to have a productive dialogue that possibly may find common ground since there are no real solutions on either side.

Each side is full of noise, rhetoric, and propaganda that poison the minds of the followers and keep them apart.

Divide and conquer, as an old musing says.

Personally, I stand in the middle of things without picking any sides, as I have no interest, or stake in this or other matters and I humbly finish my 2-cent opinion.

Moving along…

The show portrays the story of Jackson “Jax” Teller (Charlie Hunnam, Queer as Folk UK, 1999-2000 ; Children of Man, 2006) ), the son of the founder of SAMCRO, and through all seven seasons, he tries to fill the enormous shoes left by his father, John Teller, and his own struggle to be a father and give his children a normal life.

In the process, mayhem, violence, and your stereotypical biker outlaw happenings occur, thus keeping the viewer entertained.

The cast includes Katey Sagal always remembered for her portrayal of Peggy Bundy in the show “Married with Children” (1986-1997). Drea de Matteo, from “The Sopranos, and Ron Perlman my favorite “Hellboy (2004) also in “Alien Resurrection” (1997), and “The City of Lost Children” (1995).

Other notables like Dayton Callie and Robin Weigert who were in the HBO show ”Deadwood” (2004-2006), and Jimmy Smits (NYPD Blue, 1993-2005: Dexter, 2006-2013).

Sons of Anarchy is part of FX original programming that includes The Americans (2013-2018), The Bridge (2013-2014), Rescue Me (2004-2011), and Justified (2010-2015), to mention a few, that presented subject matter and stories in new ways that may be difficult to some viewers, but highly raved by others in a very fragmented TV landscape.

Next: Drive-in Friday 80’s Classics

Valentines Day…

It has been centuries (or so it seems) since I bought any flowers for Valentines Day (or any other day).

How things change, and not for the better it seems…

A long, long time ago in a planet called Earth, days like this were simpler, for it used to a holiday for local businesses. A local flower shop was called, they took the order, and presto flowers delivered on time and without issues.

The transaction built a sort of personal or professional relationship, as repeated business for future Valentines Days or any other occasions like anniversaries, birthdays, get well wishes, and the occasional death provided an exchange of money for goods and services that contributed to the local economy.

Not anymore…

Now is online or by phone to some hustler who subcontracts services from somebody who in turn subcontract somebody else to deliver the flowers. Or the other option is to simply order the flowers to be delivered in a tasteless box with some tags like is sent from the great beyond and delivered like a common package; thus losing any personal appeal or touch, as it is just two clicks and move on to the next “get-things-done” (GTD) item to check off.

I decided on the former and it was a nightmare since none of the instructions was followed. I guess nobody reads or follows instructions anymore, and to add to this evolving comedy of errors, the person working the desk at her job told the delivery person that she never heard or know her…as nobody knows nor care for anything anymore. It was difficult and hard to understand in the simple world that I live for the past decade why things had become so complicated. It felt like a language barrier moment were communication became nonexistent as nobody speaks the other person’s language but everybody wants to talk, when I got a call from the delivery person saying that he could not deliver the flowers. I was not happy, but I explained to him to go back and tell the person that she worked there, what department, and she (at the desk) could call her supervisor (gave him the supervisor’s name as well).

So the comedy of errors finally ended with her getting a text from her supervisor, driving back to her job to get the flower basket, and the “oh, it’s you!” moment when the person at the desk realized who she was.

I was hoping to give her a nice surprise since she told me back when we met that she never got flowers delivered to her home or job, but the experience was one that made me reevaluate this holidays thing (again) that seem to drive the economy for only a brief and temporary state of time.

I don’t know, maybe next year be a time for something different.

However, she was happy and surprised and felt like a million dollars even after all the shenanigans.

To be continued…

First “Family” Date Part Two: Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979–1981)

I opened the door of my apartment; it was later than my usual time getting home even for a Friday. Over the last few years, I did not have a social life except the occasional family shindig and the dreaded holiday season. I got used to my Friday night events in front of my television.

I had a good time in our first date despite what she referred as a “bust”, as we rushed through the faire; however, just like her son, I thought the whole thing was silly and at times ridiculously riddled with infantile adults pretending to be magical or mythical creatures.

I guess, “I’m old, crusty, grumpy, and proud”.

Feeling “old” and somewhat “antiquated”, I opened the blue-ray box set of “Buck Rogers on the 25th Century”, put the first disc on the player, and plunged on my chair. Over the last year, I had found TV shows and movies of my youth and a reminder of how time and people’s fortunes intertwine and intersect. I have reacquainted with these shows and movies of my past maybe for nostalgia or maybe as a realization that I am a middle-aged man, and this realization drives people to get in touch with things of their past as a way to hold on to life – who knows.

Buck Rogers lasted two seasons on NBC and based on the movie of the same title. The show’s pilot was an alternate version of theatrical film to fit the show sequence, and it is similar to Battlestar Galactica adaptation from feature film to television show.

The shows just like many others, were cashing in the Star Wars popularity and the revival of Star Trek (Star Trek: The Motion Picture was released on later the same year).

The original Buck Rogers made his debut on the “August 1928 issue of the pulp magazine, Amazing Stories” (Wikipedia). In 1929, the first edition of the serialized comic strip debuted and ran until 1967, and later revived by the New York Times Syndicate in 1977 as Buck Rogers in the 25th Century and ran until concluding in 1983 (Wikipedia).

However, his adventures soon made it to a new medium of the time, radio, with 15 and 30-minute episodes from 1932 to 1947, and earning a 10 minute spot at the 1933–34 World Fair in Chicago (Wikipedia).

Buck Rogers once again debuted in another media platform when in 1939 his adventures made it to film and debuted in theaters, as a 12 part serial produced by Universal Pictures Company and casted Buster Crabbe as Rogers (made a cameo in the episode Planet of the Slave Girls; Season 1, Episode 2 ). Buck Rogers finally debuted on yet another medium, television, as ABC aired a version of the show from 1950 to 1951. Only 36 black and white episodes were made to which none existed today (Wikipedia).

The latest version and the one I was watching was typical of a time of excesses, color blindness (neons and pastels mismatches) that became part of the 80’s era full of big hair and spandex (lots of it). Furthermore, depicting a future lacking testosterone, half-assed Kung Fu kicks, and exposed hairy chests until Captain William “Buck” Rogers arrived from his 500-year sleep. Watching this show brought some thoughts (mostly dark chuckles) about why shows like these would be in the pyre of wrath of today’s media puritanism.

The first season follows more of the line of the original comic strip and subsequent shows presenting a weekly adventure of Rogers and his cast of sidekicks, but this newer version also gives him the aura of James Bond of the 25th century along with gadgets and barely dressed women but with aliens as an added twist.

The Love Boat in Space

However, the second season departed from that formula and was set with Buck and Wilma in a space ship called Searcher in search of the lost tribes of Earth. However, the ship and crew looks more like a space version of The Love Boat with even more spandex and scanty dressed female crewmembers including Wilma dressed like Sailor Moon. Along with new friends like Hawk, the show was cancelled, thus becoming another casualty of the Star Wars / Star Trek effect.

Like Galactica 1980, the second season was hard to watch causing heartburn, thus a caution that not all changes in life are good and if it is not broken…do not fix it.

Thanks to Wikipedia article on Buck Rogers and I know what people think about this website, but most of the stuff was checked and would had been unfair not to credit them.

Next: Sons of Anarchy

First “Family” Date

The first time we went out as a “family” was to the Hoggetowne Medieval Faire at the Alachua County Fairgrounds in Gainesville, Florida.

Age difference in a relationship can be a never-ending struggle since it can be a clash of different eras and views of life. It is like the news story about coffee being bad for one’s health only to be followed (in the next 2 nano-seconds) by another that claims that drinking coffee is not only healthy but also great therapy. Sometimes it feels like speaking in another language, and other times it feels like taking a test that you did not studied. It is funny to see some of the reactions from people, even at a time were same-sex and interracial relationships are more accepted, as the average person frowns upon relationships were there is a noticeable and significant age difference. However, in our case there is lack of lofty expectations since we both had issues with relationships in the past, and the simple desire of taking everything day by day may help – time will tell.

It was a late Friday afternoon and it was cooler still when we parked at the lot overlooking the Gainesville Regional Airport and the roaring of airplanes and the sound of the afternoon traffic can be deafening. It was the end of January and winter was waning, and the dawn of spring in Florida was coming. Still these are silly words since aside from some cold days that caused some extra days off from school (another story), seasons are barely noticeable in the Sunshine State that became my adopted home.

This was the first time we were going somewhere together since most of what we did previously was hang around her house or mine. She decided to take her autistic son to the Hoggetowne Medieval Faire for the first time. She was very exited for him (I think she was more exited than him) to see the horses, the vendors, the costumes, the jousters, the knights, and other creatures in the place.

Autism is a conundrum because it is like the Baskin-Robbins slogan “31 flavors”, for it is not the same for everybody despite the uniqueness of their quirks and the specifics and routine-like doings. However, in her son’s case, he does have the warmth and a sensible personality of his mother, which it is different from the average autistic children, and adults who tend to be the opposite. Yet, between the crowds of people (mostly adults) deluding themselves wearing costumes and pretending they were in a magical world (there was a very busy ale tent around the center of the “town”) and some of the “street” characters, he was not happy and wanted to leave.

Welcome to the world of autism...

The final straw was a performer (idiot would be my choice to describe him) on stilts trying to be funny. He picked on him for not laughing at his silly (stupid) jokes, and even after he told her “mommy, let’s go”, he continued to pick on him until we managed to move along the crowd. It was luck because I was aggravated too and was tempted to push him off his stilts, which probably would have got me into trouble, but at least it would be funnier than his lousy jokes and poor attitude. She was very upset, as she wanted to visit the rest of the vendors while her munchkin wanted to leave. However, she talked to him and after taking a long a break, he agreed to see the rest of vendors, and of course, every so often, he would say “are we done?” in the nonchalant tone typical of autism. She was still upset and later apologized (she still does) for the shortened date as we dashed through the vendors like running the 100-meters on the Olympics, and left after about an hour and a half. I told her that it was OK since I never been to the faire in my 20 plus years in town, and that I thought it was supposed to be for kids but seems like there were a lot of deluded adults in town that thought they were going to Futureworld instead. I did not told her of my analogy because I am sure she did not know about the 1976 movie, and she was genuinely hurt and sad that the date was a “bust”. It is hard for parents of special needs children, but is harder for single parents of special needs children in many more ways that the average person is not aware or cares. She did not say it, but you could tell that she was worried I may just run away after that day, hide in my place, and reconsider this relationship thing.

In the end, it was all-good and munchkin was very happy again with a visit to the food emporium and temple of gluttony named McDonalds (unpaid promotional consideration) who magically turned the experiences of the past hours into a distant memory for one and a never again for the other.

You got to love it!

She dropped me at my apartment, waved goodbye, and I walked to my door…

To be continued…

The Wire (2002–2008)

It was the beginning of the year 2018, and the daily grind began with no signs of ever slowing down. It felt like a job some long time ago, but now is merely labor since every day there is something else to do without extra compensation and less staff to do it.

Most of the times, these added tasks are the result of unforeseen results from new procedures that look great paper, but since the “geniuses” never leave the office nor bother to send anybody to see how these ideas are implemented, the results end adding more strain on the staff at the bottom of the pit — as usual.

As I mentioned in the past, I got the job as a way to finish school, but getting another job has been difficult. However, I think my age, the many odds and different jobs I had done in the past, and not graduating from the right college, is not going to spark much interest from employers to hire me.

I was still new to this relationship thing and was adapting to new routines and new things.

Being the mother of a special needs child, her life is slightly different (maybe a bit more than slightly) from other women, and it required patience (lots of it) and flexibility on my part. Luckily, I have oodles of both, an unintended side effect from all the life struggles.

However, I still come home; beat, tired, and sore from the day, and my only happy thought during the day is to get home, flop on my chair, and stare at the TV searching for something to watch flickering between awake and asleep. This goes on for a few hours until is time for a shower, and go to bed until next morning when the grind begins all over again. In that dazed stage between awake and asleep, I found myself watching “The Wire” once again.

I like police shows but “The Wire” is a bit more than your regular cop show, as it delves into the more complex aspects of city life, its culture, and its politics.

Created by David Simon (Treme, 2010; Generation Kill, 2008; Homicide: Life on the Street, 1993-1999) and based on his book “Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets”, presents a world that is somewhat unknown to many people not because is secret, but because they rather keep their collective heads buried in the sand and “don’t feel depressed” (as many reviews in IMDb pointed out) with the stories within the show.

Over the span of the show, he presents different perspectives of the citizens, politicians, pretenders, fixers, and criminals of the city of Baltimore as their lives intersect and blend with each other. Many of the stories and characters that round up this drama are similar in many cities across the United States, as the rift between castes widens and the return of the grandsons of suburbia displaces the beggars, fiends, and other city creatures.

The cast includes Dominic West (300, 2006), Lance Reddick (Bosh, 20014-2018; Fringe, 2008-2013), Wendell Pierce (Treme, 2010-2013), Seth Gilliam (Starship Troopers, 1997), Dominic Lombardozzi (Boardwalk Empire, 2010-2014 ), Clarke Peters (Treme, 2010-2013), Andre Royo (Fringe, 2010-2013), Frankie Faison (Banshee, 2013-2016), Michael Kenneth Williams (Boardwalk Empire, 2010-2014; The Night Of, 2016), Idris Elba (Luther, 2010-Present; Prometheus, 2012) and Aidan Gillen (Queer as Folk UK, 1999-2000; Game of Thrones, 2011-2019).

Next: Buck Rogers in the 25th Century

The Expanse Seasons 1 and 2…I did not heed my own advise

I am not the easiest person to get along and I have no pretensions of sainthood (a stage when people gets old and feel uplifted so much they seem to elevate to heaven); however, for most of my life I lived in denial and tried to “fit” into society’s expectations of normalcy. It is no surprise that my two long-term relationships (a relative term), one marriage and one “living in sin” relationship did not lasted. So in all my life (52 years), I can say that my life has been two long-term relationships (in relative terms), and a string of “nothings” for lack of a better term to describe my hits and mostly misses in the dating scene.

Another issue for me, is that the dating pool is not as it was since I do not want children because at my age is sort of shallow and egotistical not to mention irresponsible. In general and in my experiences, most women around my age had endured several relationships (good, bad, or both) and are either looking to get even or are not ready to move on and begin a new relationship still hung up in past ones. Younger women are still looking for a good partner and maybe expand the family or to begin one and that is a good reason for not dating me. Finally, older woman are simply set on their ways (like me) and do not feel the need for change in their lives and I admire that. So after some several misses, I realized that maybe this relationships thing was not for me and over the past years had slowly settled into a quiet routine at home, quiet dinners by myself, and watching all sorts of movies and TV shows.

My job does not have many responsibilities and provided ample time to finish my elusive education (done by the end of 2017), but money was tight and going “out” was not posible.

Since the economic woes of a decade ago, I began a journey of sorts and decided to practice minimalism or learn to live with the basic needs (not much into trends). Over the years, I had done well in that venture and my life has become much simpler, but as an unintended side effect it has also rendered social life pointless. I do not have a “need” or “want” to go out like before, and hence the holidays and other times when social gatherings and other sorts of collective activities became uninteresting and unimportant.

Having to learn to live with less and achieving contempt (happiness like sadness are momentary and transitory states) was that single moment of consciousness when all made sense, and help me understood that simplicity in life is more complex and difficult to achieve than society’s social expectations. There is another more simple and mundane reason for not going “out”, and it has to do with the inconvenience that I do not drink anymore and being the designated driver became a nuisance. Furthermore, sitting at a bar and trying to make conversation with people that are drunk is impossible since we are out of phase. Out of phase means that since the other person has ingested several drinks (maybe a lot) his or her speech has become slurred and slower than normal, and the only way to get in phase is to drink and catch up with the person until we are both in phase (or drunk).

So I settled into my quiet routine and for the last few years it has worked because the bills got paid and there was no drama in my life.

Over the years, I had made fun of older men dating younger woman. I joked about it in all sorts of conversations, writings, and other forms of communication. I was specifically harsh with guys in their 60’s married to a 25-year old woman and pushing a baby stroller at Disney World (I still think is silly and somewhat irresponsible).

And there she was…

The Universe, however, has a sense of humor and likes to put people on the spot, and since I did not heed my own advise, I was trapped and swept in my own words and the “good” me on one side pleading to me to give love (lust was a better word) a chance and the “bad” me laughing hysterically telling me that I was too old for her, and it was pretentious of me to expect her to take care of a grouchy old loner like me. The debate that was going on in my head quickly became denial as I kept saying to myself “no, this can’t be”, but “man, who was I kidding?”

It all started her first day of work because it was someone new to look at and maybe talk about the weather (like my other coworkers), and for months that is all I did. I could see that there was some attraction but it was dismissed as nonsense in my part (“bad” me). The other thing was that she kept talking about her life using “we” when describing events of her life, so my assumption was that she was in a relationship. The other reason for not pursuing “this” whatever it could had been (at that time) was that this was work, and all the commotions these days at workplaces with any advances (wanted or unwanted) was a risk not worth taking (“good” me).

The days and weeks passed and the daily grind continued to chew up the staff to the point that I got home every day so tired that the only thing in my mind during the day was to get home, flop on my chair, and stay there until I was numb, and the silly foolish notions of the possibility of a relationship were like so far away that eluded my mind.

The Expanse: Season 1 and 2

As numb and sore and in delusion (yeah!), I decided to watch the 1st season of “The Expanse” in the hopes that my denials faded. The show was interesting as it was different and similar to other shows. Based on “The Expanse” series (six books plus other stories), by James S. A. Corey (pen name for Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck), the show presents a world were mankind had colonized Mars and the asteroid belt had become a source for water and other minerals. Earth had become dependent of Mars and “The Belt” and rifts and resentment had grown creating conflicts as the people from Earth looked down on Marsies and Belters since they were not born on Earth. However, a series of events bring all these factions into conflict that can reshape the universe. A common complaint or issue in most of the reviews I read, point out that the sequence of events was scattered and out of order thus confusing the some viewers to the point of frustration with the show. But the book (Leviathan Wakes, book one of the series) follows a similar path as it goes back and forth between the characters of Miller and Holden to tell the story.

Season two begins with Mars and Earth at the point of war and continues with the twists and turns as the single event that is dangling all these factions and groups of people seen at the point of collision.

Season three was schedule to debut later next year (2018), and it was announced later that year (2018) that the show was cancelled by the Scify channel and later was picked up by Amazon and a fourth season was announced but no details were available at the time.

Christmas break was around the corner when against my previous denials and insecurities, I asked for her phone number so we can chitchat some time. Her eye sparkled and shined as I looked down at her (she was sitting down taking a break). So we began texting back and forth, and finally met her and her son at her place on the last day of school (Christmas break). And so it began, another shot at relationships, and as usual the questions and mainly insecurities about the wisdom of trying something that I had failed in the past. However, at this time, I have no expectations and no pressure and will take this day by day. She felt was pretty much like me and was not seeking to have any relationships since most of her past one had not ended well and agreed to take whatever “this is” with same approach.

I did not heed my own advice and got swept into this relationship thing again. There are stuff I “don’t get” yet, like the phone glued to her right hand and the endless postings in social media, her obsession with the weather (literally), and her fascination with Reality TV. I am sure she feels the same way about my multiple quirks, my dislikes for cellphones and social media, and my taste in television shows, but at this point she seems to either ignore me or humor me.

The holidays went by, the New Year began, and a lot of new experiences await and since I did not heed my own advice, most likely I will soon be like grandpa at Disney, pushing the stroller like a new happy old daddy with the young wife next to me…

Next: The New Year (2018) and a string of shows and movies…