Neither of which are all that hard. Hmm. My life is marshmello-y in its lack of structure. Sure, I’ve got the classes, sure I’ve got the deadlines, but there’s a whole lot of time in there that just seems to get eaten up with random business.
To take stock of deadlines, I’ve got a Professional Responsibility final on Dec 16th. That’s about a month away. I need to get the rules down in a notated flowcharty kinda way. Client lies to you, rule X, Y, Z implicated, and so forth.
I’ve also got a Computer Crime Seminar paper due on Dec 22nd. I’ll be writing about the existing state of 4th Amendment protections (case law) of remotely stored data (google, yahoo, etc.). I’ll also be looking at statues that may or may not plug the holes in the caselaw. That’s a much more unformed project.
I've got various essays and letters to get together for my employment applications.
For clinic, I’m carrying an open parole revocation case, an open possession case, an open simple assault case. I have a fourth case that’s now on the STET docket (diversion) so it’s pretty much done (I hope, for my client’s sake.) I should probably pick up another case soon, given that the simple assault case may be going on for quite a bit. The clinic wants you busy, but not so busy that you can’t do everything you need to for your client.
Speaking of which, I wish I’d been logging my hours for clinic – legal research v. investigation v. classwork v. hanging on the phone while someone tries to figure out what’s going on. I think a huge chunk of my time has been spent in the last category. Case in point - one of my clients is in jail. That client wanted to avail themselves of a necessary service that the jail should provide. They’d filled out (yes, I’m one of those singular “they/their” users – just fucking deal with it, OK?) a lot of forms. Over and over again, apparently.
So I spent about 3 hours trying to figure out how to get this service for my client. I called X who gave me Y’s number, who was out, so I got Y’s assistant, who dropped me. Calling back I got Y’s assistant who put me on hold for 10 minutes before telling me that X could take care of my problem. After straightening things out with Y’s assistant, I was told that Y was out (no shit) and that Y would be the person to talk to. So I called Z, who was also given to me by X. Could Z help me? Not directly, but they could contact Q, who’d be able to do what I wanted done. All I’d have to do is call back in an hour to make sure that Q was in fact there and could in fact do what I needed.
Blah. That kind of stuff takes up so much time.
Speaking of Q, I saw the new James Bond film. There is no Q. Thankfully. Like any kid my age, I loved James Bond as a pre-teen: cool glimpses into exoticlly located worlds of privilege, guns, and quirky villains. So I went out and began reading the Bond novels. Flemming was suprisingly good – really engaging writing, tense and deeply psychological. Casino Royale, the first novel, hooked me in – it seemed I was reading something entirely different from the often cheesy Bond I’d first known via film. After Flemming, things started going badly with Gardner (the second Bond novelist) and the book series just became sidetracked, formulaic, so I stopped reading.
As far as the movies went, I divide them into Connery Bond, Dalton Bond and Moore/Brosnan Bonds.
Connery just had charisma in spades, so he sort of took over the films which were revolutionary in their day, but not quite what the books were. In many ways Sean Connery is James Bond, or he made James Bond into himself. I tend to think of the 60s Connery films as perfect for their day, a kind of hermetic universe.
I tend to think of the Moore/Brosnan Bonds as being too polished, to cartoonish to be anything but campy. Brosnan was much better than Moore, but the never-a-hair-out-of-place constant quipping gets to you after awhile. That said, Goldeneye and Octopussy are the high points in this type of Bond film, and each are worth renting. I think their main flaw was trying to be Connery-esque, but there's a kind of earthy earnestness to Connery's wryness that is just beyond either Moore or Brosnan.
Oddly, I was very fond of the Dalton Bonds, for a) simply not being Moore, and b) trying to introduce that gritty air of danger and uncertainty from which genuine tension springs. Dalton looked a bit odd at times, but he had a kind of wolfish impatience to him that I liked.
The (new) Craig Bond is really much closer to the original Bond of the books (or at least the script is much closer to a Fleming novel insofar as it's psychological concerns) – and thus on the scale of Movie Bonds is certainly closer to the Dalton Bond rather than the Moore/Brosnan Bond. I think it works very well. The Craig Bond has a kind of physical charisma, a sort of earnestness even when he’s in reserve that resembles Connery, for all that he’s not as raffishly handsome as Connery.
This is certainly my fav. Bond film overall.
BTW – there are a lot of very good novelists out there who have been subsequently destroyed my movie and popular culture adaptations. Yes, not surprising, I know. The children eat the parent and so on.
Two of my fav. Pulp novelists are Robert E Howard and HP Lovecraft (although the wiki article leaves out HP’s return to grace, where at the close of his life he became more accepting and overcame many of his prejudices.) Then of course there’s Doyle.
The thing that gets me about all of these guys is how their literary characters and stories had huge and lasting impact on literary and popular culture, often in surpring ways. For example, the X Files were basically just Doyle meets Lovecraft. (Sherlock, the strange bachelor obsessed with crime who bucks the system when it pleases him and Watson, the pistol-toting medical doctor who is the voice of conventional reason and completely devoted to his friend, are the touchstones for Mulder and Scully. The creepiness of many of the tales were lifted straight from Lovecraft, particularly the ones about inbreds and cannibals and aliens frozen in the ice of the south pole.)
Yet popular culture has mangled all of them in their own way. Howard’s fully-clothed and armored Conan often ran from fights that involved magic – he was an oppertunisitc thief and nobody's fool. Lovecraft didn’t have a memorable hero (they often die or go mad), but that’s appropriate, given his sense of enduring cosmic evil lurking beneath the bland skin of the world. Unfortunately, this sense is often parodied as mere exotic otherworldliness. Doyle’s Sherlock is seldom remembered as a bi-polar drug addict who broke the law when it suited him, and who would never be caught dead in a deer-stalker in fashionable London.
Doyle, Lovecraft, Howard and Fleming: Sherlock Holmes, The Necronomicon, Conan, and Bond, James Bond.
If you have time, find the originals and take a look at what they were really doing. A lot of stuff in them is very dated (and elitist, sexist and racist), but in many ways, due to what's happened to the characters since then, the originals, if introduced new today, would be considered a radical re-imagining of the characters and stories.
I’d put in a plug for Tolkien as well, but he’s doing rather well lately, even if the movies were an appalling hack job of the books themselves.