Bermuda International FF. 13 Mar 2010.

‘chasing KEINO’ will screen at 6:30PM, 19 March, at the Bermuda International Film Festival. My friend, David Binder’s film ‘Calling My Children’ will screen there too. I met David at the San Diego Black Film Festival where both of our films screened in January 2010. The Bermuda International Film Festival 2010 is a qualifier for the Academy Awards.

Ancients, anyone? 12 Mar 2010.

And I had done an hellish thing,
And it would work ’em woe :
For all averred, I had killed the bird,
That made the breeze to blow.
Ah wretch ! said they, the bird to slay,
That made the breeze to blow !
Nor dim nor red, like God’s own head,
The glorious Sun uprist :
Then all averred, I had killed the bird,
That brought the fog and mist.
‘Twas right, said they, such birds to slay,
That bring the fog and mist.
The boat came closer to the ship,
But I nor spake nor stirred ;
The boat came close beneath the ship,
And straight a sound was heard.
The ship suddenly sinketh.
Under the water it rumbled on,
Still louder and more dread :
It reached the ship, it split the bay ;
The ship went down like lead.
This is my story.
My rattle.
My finality.
I am Mike.

This is one possible opening scene. The above is from ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ by Samuel Coleridge Taylor. Which I sort of love for a number of reasons. It’s a weighty intro even as a voice-over and should be able to set an opening tone. It’s public domain and no releases are needed for it’s use. This V.O. would be audio to a sequence that fades up from black.

Bluebird of Englishers? 10 Mar 2010.

It is neither the Bluebird of happiness or the national bird of England. We, of course, know that to be the European Robin. It is a Idaho Pileated Woodpecker seeking refuge from a snowstorm under a tree at a friends house. The other snap is of my friends from the UK. They are watching my film ‘chasing KEINO’ and as usual thought of some things that may very well be worth pursuing in BBC distribution channels. ‘¡Englishers!’, said the deeply Southern accented Voice Over. Or maybe, just maybe – the V.O. should be done by ‘Woody Woodpecker’.

Please allow me to introduce… 21 Feb 2010.

The Covington post below is there – because I’m working on a screenplay. I’ve been using these posts as sort of a vehicle/marker of sorts to log certain thoughts. Right. My thoughts from yesterday.

But, anyway(s), there is a climbing scene in the screenplay – and – yes- that’s why it’s posted here (and there).. Because it’s fresh in the memory banks… It made me think that when we were at 15,000 feet on McKinley. Hamish McInnes and a climbing buddy passed through our camp on their way to – it might have been the Cassin Ridge. So Hamish tells us a funny story. He said he’s climbing on Everest and they’re at the 23,000 foot level. They’re on fixed lines and from below them come two German climbers who have been listening to the World Soccer match between Scotland and Germany. As the Germans pass Hamish & Company on a fixed line, they tell him ‘it looks like Germany is beating your country at it’s National game’. Hamish, not missing a beat says: ‘Aye, but we’ve beaten you at your National games twice now’. (Meaning WWI and WWII, just in case you have no sense of world history, or non-linearity ain’t your thing). YEEOOWWW!

Hausfrau. 20 Feb 2010.

I saw the craziest thing two nights ago in Austin. This ‘painter’ that does renderings; they’re not paintings – they’re literal copies of these heavily manipulated still lives. So renderings. What do you do? Renderings. It was such a strange mindfuck. I have no idea how long she spends on them. (They look laboured over). That SNL skit came to mind. The one where they say (I’m paraphrasing): ‘The Italian Renaissance called and they want their archaic painting style back.’ LOL. I wondered if she knew that the camera had been invented? And could do exactly what she was doing with a lot more ease. And credibility, for that matter. It really is true. When Joseph Beuys said: ‘Everyone is an artist’. I don’t think he meant it literally. The artists that we admire – actually think. And thinking usually leads to originality. Which propels society forward – not backward…(Unless you’re not good at thinking, of course). A lot of this junk is like someone reading a newspaper article and then reciting it back – like a parrot. Verbatim. Don’t tell us what you read (and we read) – tell us what you THINK. Very different. Ain’t it? Thus the expression: I ain’t intalented and increative. Really?

Cov. 16 Feb 2010.

I climbed the West Rib on McKinley with Cov in 1981. I remember Cov and I waiting on Kalhiltna Glacier for Lowell Thomas, Jr to drop off the last two drag bags for our climb. We were standing looking out across a basin when ‘Boom’… it sounded like a canon going off. It was an avalanche that traveled from one mountain base stopping at the other. Huge. I remember Cov saying that he spent his 30th birthday on the face of Lohtse looking at Everest thinking that he’d never make it to age thirty. We passed Muggs Stump – who was attempting Mooses Tooth and made it. He died on McKinley in 1992 when a hanging serac collapsed on him. Gunnar Naslund another expedition crew member and Alaska native died the year following our climb, 1982, in the Wrangell mountains. He loved that range and we had talked about trying one of the routes the following year. He was on a cornice when it gave way. The peak was re-named Mt Naslund. Gunnar was an attorney that gave up practising law for high altitude climbing. Very cool guy and I felt fortunate to have known him.

Where’s the Love?13 Feb 2010.

A friend in Santa Fe just sent these snaps from the opening night screening of my film ‘chasing KEINO’ at the Santa Fe Film Festival. These are the Kenyan runners – the principals in my film, at the Jean Cocteau Theatre, on opening night. The Kenyans are delightful to hang out with – very cool. The other guy is Wes Studi – I always remember him from the film ‘The Last of The Mohicans’ – he played Magua to the bone. Very interesting guy. I enjoyed very much talking to him. Oh. Yes. The guy in the ball cap in the photo above is none-other-than Steve Spielberg. Looking very trim without all of that directing weighing him down. Lighten up… I’m just kidding.