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Sports metaphors, metaphors, 30, & happy / unhappy phrasings

Friday, March 29th, 2019

[ by Charles Cameron — including an intermezzo with Bach’s links with Mendelssohn — as usual, quite a diverse haul ]
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Nicolle:

There are cracks in the frenzied spin from the White House around the Barr summary of the as-yet-unreleased Mueller report. As the President tracks down axes to grind, consensus is building around Robert Mueller’s refused to exonerate the President in the obstruction of justice investigation ..

Joyce Vance:

We’ve seen all these dots out in the pubic domain, indications of obstruction, and apparently Mueller wasn’t able to connect them, and the question is, Why?

Ari:

You just can’t write a book-report for a book you haven’t read ..

Disclosure: You can. I have.

Here’s a weird sequence..

And if that isn’t weird enough..

Okay, a twinning once I get the transcript: chyrons “Dem grills” / “bip[artisan rebuke”

**

A move I want to watch, and you may too: Hotel Mumbai:

Well, you know, ads intervene in even the best paid programming of mice and men .. and, you know, trailers are ads..

And BTW, the Roger Ebert reviewer wrote:

I watched and wrestled with Anthony Maras’ searing, startlingly confident debut “Hotel Mumbai,” where every fatal bullet fired out of the ruthless terrorists’ semi-automatic weapons hit me at my core.

That’s screen-to-viewer violence, as when the heaalights of a car sweeping up thr movie drive suddenly swerve and blind you..

Back to Hardball:

Regarding his work as a speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, Chris Matthews describes

The most honest and moral man, who honored the call of the prophet

Matthews opening clip:

Jumping over the Barr — let’splay Hardball

Comey:

Chris Matthews, quoting him:

.. all the smoke, if you will, of a deal between the President’s people and the Russians, all the interactions between them, he said — imagine if Obama, in a parallel universe, had those kinds of relationships with the Iranians, would you think they might have investigated it?

Pause.

Trump, a brief essay in turning the other cheek hitting back:

One of the things you should do in terms of success: If somebody hits you, you’ve got to hit ’em back five times harder than they ever thought possible. You’ve got to get even. Get even. And the reason, the reason you do, is so important…The reason you do, you have to do it, because if they do that to you, you have to leave a telltale sign that they just can’t take advantage of you. It’s not so much for the person, which does make you feel good, to be honest with you, I’ve done it many times. But other people watch and you know they say, “Well, let’s leave Trump alone,” or “Let’s leave this one,” or “Doris, let’s leave her alone. They fight too hard.” I say it, and it’s so important. You have to, you have to hit back. You have to hit back.

Times two:

Get even with people. If they screw you, screw them back 10 times as hard. I really believe it.

As a motto:

My motto is: Always get even. When somebody screws you, screw them back in spades.

Chris M:

He [DJT] goes after Adam Schiff .. says, He couldn’t hit a drive 50 yards..

I’m not sure, but today’s [3/29] DJT quote, “he’s not a long ball hitter” may belong here as a second shoe dropping? — or is it a different aport and different target?

Matthews, on healthcare:

Trump is walking right into that Gatling gun***** of defeat — why is he doing this?

**

Okay game of glass beads players, HipBone-style — here’s the Bach-Mendelssohn graph for your consideration:

And –I’m missing one name, which may be in the video — Bach, Mendelssohn and the Saint Matthew Passion:

— a direct line, as I understand it, of teachers and pupils from Bach to Mendelssohn..

Fox inserts:

Matthews:

My morning doppelgänger Joe Scarborough ..

**

Ok, a few loose quotes. I’m looking for Elizabeth Warren using the phrase “war of ideas” but the closest I could find was:

This is the fight of our lives. The fight to build an America that works for everyone, not just the wealthy and the well-connected. It won’t be easy. But united by our values, we can make big, structural change. We can raise our voices together until this fight is won.

Fight of our lives is as strong as fight metaphors get without adding details — Queensbury Rules boxing, Mixed Martial Arts in the Hexagon, a Jagger-style street-fighting man?

This one has been quoted often enough to fade into the woodwork:

The budget is a moral document.

A missing chyron — when people post videos of MSNBC shows, and probably other news channels too, they often leave off the last 5 minutes [sad face] — Green New Deal ignites firestorm ..

O’Donnell 3/28/2019:

.. the suspended animation as we wait for the actual Mueller report ..

Good one: suspended animation*****.

Unknown, 3/28 at 10.17:

Go to present day baseball, stay on the sidelines, stay out of it ..

**

This is an oldie, but I saw it today and it’s a matter of concern for me as I deal with pain from amputations & neuropathy:

  • Patrick Radden Keefe, The Family That Built an Empire of Pain
  • **

    I’ll close with this tweet —

    — and this speech in response to DJT’s attack by Adam Schiff —

    — plus this in commentary, from Lawrence O’Donnell:

    This is just Kabuki theater, they have no power to remove Adam Schiff from his position ..

    Oiut.

    It’s snowing metaphoric chyrons, ignore unless interested 2

    Wednesday, February 13th, 2019

    [ by Charles Cameron — politics is the straightforward topic, metaphor is the metalanguage we use to describe it, and reveals more than it refers to ].
    .

    More chyrons &c from yesterday’s haul:

    **

    With regard to that last one:

    On Friday, Donald Trump tweeted the headline to a recent Washington Examiner story, which read: “Border rancher: ‘We’ve found prayer rugs out here. It’s unreal.’” As the headline suggests, the story is about a New Mexico rancher who claims to have seen prayer rugs—typically used by observers of Islam—near the U.S.-Mexico border. After the headline, Trump added this: “People coming across the Southern Border from many countries, some of which would be a big surprise.”

    His decision to amplify the Examiner piece has since come under scrutiny. Why? Because the prayer-rug story sounds an awful lot like something that happens in Sicario: Day of the Soldado, as several people have pointed out on Twitter.

    The 2018 action film, which revolves around the drug war along the border, opens with border agents chasing after a group of migrants—one of whom turns out to be a Muslim suicide bomber. He kneels, prays, then detonates his bomb. After that, agents come across abandoned prayer rugs along the border; in the next scene, three suicide bombers walk into a store in Kansas City and kill innocent civilians.

    A case of Matryoshka realities:

    The particular interest here from a formal point of view is that it is Borgesian or Escherian in its flipping of realities — but that only makes the Islamophobia more poisonous, because it’s delivered in what’s effectively a subliminal manner.

    **

    More chyrons etc:

    And the suggestions Melber’s viewers made for art illustrative of the Mueller probe:

    That whole painting series relates back to the Ari Melber conversation I quoted in the previous post, in which his guests suggested the Mueller probe and Giuliani in particular reminded them of Impressionism, Cubism and Jackson Pollock, surrealism, and Salvador Dali with his melting clocks..

    **

    Need to slip this in, it’s excerpted from my transcription of a clip of Hakeem Jeffries of the House Judiciary Cttee questioning Whitaker:

    Manafort. Gates, Cohen, Papanopoulos, and Stone. All in deep trouble. One by one, All the President’s Men, going down in flames. It’s often said, where there’s smoke there’s fire. There’s a lot of smoke emanating from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue now. Yet. You decided not to recuse yourself, is that right?

    And I’m not sure when this exchange took place, but it’s Nicolle Wallace talking with Brennan, and the metaphor here comes from physics (Everett‘s many worlds theory) via science fiction:

    What’s it like to live in these parallel worlds, where the President doesn’t just want to have whatever policy he wants, he wants whatever facts he chooses to pursue that policy..

    The President. Nicolle says, doesn’t want facts, he wants — let’s call them ficts.

    And Nicolle to Brennan again:

    You’ve been warning about this sort of lurch towards autocratic behaviors — one of them is bashing the intelligence community, one of them is bashing law enforcement and the rule if low, another one is bashing the media..

    Bash, bash, bash.

    **

    Phew.

    Here are a few more chyrons from yesterday:

    And here’s a first chyron from today — this one continuing the shift of metaphoric emphasis from sports and games to warfare, the metaphor Trump uses is landmines.. metaphorically invoking hidden dangers that suddenly appear to attack you when you least expect it:

    One delicious ouroboros and miscellaneous chyrons &c

    Friday, January 25th, 2019

    [ by Charles Cameron — all the way through to Roger Stone and a clip from Godfather II ]
    .

    First, in the place of honor, this brilliant sign protesting the government shutdown. Ouroboric in form, simple, succinct, pithy:

    That’s a protest haiku, if ever I saw one, in a detail from the original photo.

    **

    And while we’re on the topic of haikus, chyrons — those texts at the foot of TV screens — are the haiku of news media. Here are some I’ve collected recently — I’ll add more here as we go, since adding them in the comments section requires tweeting them so as to have a URL to work with..

    As I’ve said elsewhere, that Carter Page, Michael Caputo, Sam Nunberg, Jerome Corsi joint interview by Ari Melber was fantastic television.

    **

    I generally pick chyrons to screengrab for their game or war metaphors, but pithy and witty will get me every time.

    **

    Kelly O’Donnell (immediately above) said memorably, “It’s a sort of dueling banjos of legislation..”

    Hey:

    Double #FAIL

    And now, the Roger Stone indictment, with its movie reference. There have been plenty of pundits an news anchors referencing the Godfather movies, and that “textbook mob tactics” reference from the new chairmen of the Oversight and Intel committees. but AFAIK this is the first such reference from the Mueller team in a court document, and notable as such.

    Plus I guess I’ll need to revisit the Godfather series to keep up with current affairs..

    A poem for our night & times, by Carolyn Forché

    Wednesday, October 31st, 2018

    [ by Charles Cameron — Halloween greetings, and a pre-midterm reminder of what demagoguery brings ]
    .

    The box is a box of Halloween humor, a slight thing and entirely innocent, designed to delight with a nostaligic frisson on Halloweens past.. Spooky Halloween Feel Boxes for Adults: Put your hand in — preferably with eyes averted or blindfold — and feel, as in touchy-feel..

    Among the sensations you are invited to feel.. cold spaghetti.. worms in a fishing box.. you get the idea.

    **

    My first association, when I saw a pointer to this article was the Gom Jabbar in Dune — a box containing pain, increasing pain. Should the candidate withdraw his hand from the box, he dies by cyanide needle, and the only means of survival is the ability to overcome instinct, which Paul Atreides manages by recitation of the Litany against Fear:

    I must not fear.
    Fear is the mind-killer.
    Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
    I will face my fear.
    I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
    And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
    Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
    Only I will remain.

    **

    Here’s the movie version:

    **

    Black boxes..

    The very idea of boxes filled with feelings is, to my mind, a fine one to explore, in humor, as in the New Yorker piece, or in deadly earnest, as in Frank Herbert‘s masterpiece, Dune.

    **

    But then, reading Colin Stokes and Ellis Rosen‘s NYorker humor piece, I came inevitably to this image:

    I said inevitably, perhaps unavoidably would have been keener to the point. I couldn’t avoid my second association.

    **

    That second association was to Carolyn Forché:‘s prose-poem The Colonel from her second volume, The Country Between Us.

    On reading her poem itself again after so many years, after reading it aloud to audiences on various occasions, after one miraculous night in the early eighties when I heard her read in LA, after reading her American Poetry Review piece about the experiences inn Al Salvador that lead to this particular poem and others — The Memory of Elena with its unforgettable paella among them — that second and more powerful association was to:

    The Colonel

    What you have heard is true. I was in his house. His wife carried a tray of coffee and sugar. His daughter filed her nails, his son went out for the night. There were daily papers, pet dogs, a pistol on the cushion beside him. The moon swung bare on its black cord over the house. On the television was a cop show. It was in English. Broken bottles were embedded in the walls around the house to scoop the kneecaps from a man’s legs or cut his hands to lace. On the windows there were gratings like those in liquor stores. We had dinner, rack of lamb, good wine, a gold bell was on the table for calling the maid. The maid brought green mangoes, salt, a type of bread. I was asked how I enjoyed the country. There was a brief commercial in Spanish. His wife took everything away. There was some talk then of how difficult it had become to govern. The parrot said hello on the terrace. The colonel told it to shut up, and pushed himself from the table. My friend said to me with his eyes: say nothing. The colonel returned with a sack used to bring groceries home. He spilled many human ears on the table. They were like dried peach halves. There is no other way to say this. He took one of them in his hands, shook it in our faces, dropped it into a water glass. It came alive there. I am tired of fooling around he said. As for the rights of anyone, tell your people they can go fuck themselves. He swept the ears to the floor with his arm and held the last of his wine in the air. Something for your poetry, no? he said. Some of the ears on the floor caught this scrap of his voice. Some of the ears on the floor were pressed to the ground.

    **

    Shattering.

    Humor has darkened to tragedy — tragedy does not suffice to speak of this horror — the box of touchy-feelies has become the Colonel’s grocery sack spilled on the floor, dried apricots are dried peach halves — despite the differences, the associative leap was, for me, inevitable.

    And far too All Hallows Eve appropriate for comfort..

    Far too apt for the upcoming midterms, too..

    Moment of Poetic Justice, huzzah!

    Monday, October 8th, 2018

    [ by Charles Cameron — a non-alcoholic Monday morning pick-me-up ]
    .

    Congratulations to this year’s winner of the Rooney Literary Prize, for more reasons than one — first, for an exemplary example of life imitating art..

    Second: that’s wonderful!

    And huzzah! is a polite, secular hallelujah!

    **

    Sources:

  • Good Will Hunting:
  • Washington Post, This author also works as a janitor.
  • See also:

  • Quartz, A prestigious university just awarded a literary prize to one of its janitors

  • it was the fact that Lally scrubs lecture halls, offices, and a library at Trinity every morning, rising at 4:45 am, and cleaning from 6 am to 9:30 am, before returning home to care for her infant daughter, that brought her international media attention.
  • **

    Nota bene: I am not the first to note the parallel between Good Will Hunting‘s plot line and this year’s Rooney Prize story — but the pair of them also make for an exemplary DoubleQuote example, eh?


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