Posts Tagged ‘speech’

Dr. King’s Day: Our impasse in the modern world

January 17, 2011

All of these words are chillingly accurate descriptions of the continued fractured state of the modern social scene, along the entire spectrum from politics to our treatment of one another.

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.

Have we not come to such an impasse in the modern world that we must love our enemies — or else? The chain reaction of evil — hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars — must be broken, or else we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.

I challenge you not to adore this picture of Dr. King and his awesome wife.

I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality.

I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.

Jesus Christ, man, we have to help him be right.

Ghost World Half-Day — Graduation

June 12, 2010

School’s out for Summer. Welcome to Ghost World Half-Day.

Graduation Speaker: High school is like the training wheels for the bicycle of real life. It is a time for young people to explore different fields of interest and to hopefully grow from their experiences.

After all, that which we learn from our mistakes can be as valuable as what we learn from our textbooks, and often we can turn the negative experiences that are common to all high-schoolers into positive steps toward personal growth and achievement.

Ghost World (Terry Zwigoff, 2001).

Graduation Speaker: In coming to terms with my own personal setback, which I’m sure you’ve all heard about, I’ve been able to learn a lot about myself. I’ve learned, for one thing, that I don’t need to rely on drugs and alcohol!


Enid: God, what a bunch of retards.

Rebecca: I thought Chipmunk Face was never going to shut up.

Enid: I know, I liked her better when she was an alcoholic crack addict! She gets in one car wreck and all of a sudden she’s Little Miss Perfect and everybody loves her.

Rebecca: It’s totally sickening.

Rebecca: This is so bad it’s almost good.

Enid: This is so bad it’s gone past good and back to bad again.

Melorra: Oh, my God, you guys! I can’t believe we made it!

Enid: Yeah, we graduated high school. How totally amazing.

It’s a great scene because the girls think they are very wise and sardonic and above-it-all, throwing out snappy one-liners and putting down the popular people at the school, and you realize that they may talk cool but they actually have a shitload of growing up to do. It gives their grimly satisfied bitchiness a certain dramatic irony and even a little pathos. I think all teenagers should be legally required to watch this film. I know I certainly should have.

All the screencaps for Ghost World Half-Day will come from a combination of sources: heartstopper, augustusgloop, and vodiak on the LJ; Movie Screenshots on the blogger; various imdb caps and old, unsourced still shots. Also I might scan some pictures from the graphic novel since I am right now looking at the spine of it in a pile of books on my desk.

Mean Girls Monday: It Happens — Gretchen Weiner edition, redux

May 10, 2010

Why should Caesar get to stomp around like a giant, while the rest of us try not to get smooshed under his big feet? What’s so great about Caesar? Brutus is just as cute as Caesar. Brutus is just as smart as Caesar. People totally like Brutus just as much as they like Caesar. And when did it become okay for one person to be the boss of everybody? Because that’s not what Rome is about. W–We should totally just stab Caesar!

Gretchen, Mean Girls.

It also happens: an imaginary scene that just happened in my head.

A Marketplace in Rome. Citizens are gathered in the dusty streets beneath a balcony, on which a man in a white toga and a purple cape draped across his shoulders stands with one arm raised up. He is clearly a snappy dresser, but he is also, it seems from the expectant mood of the crowd, reputed to be a powerful orator.

I am standing next to an ordinary citizen, waiting to hear what the man on the balcony has to say. After greeting the crowd, his opening salvo shocks the audience:

“I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.”

The assembled friends, Romans, and countrymen are all puzzled and going, “Well, yeah. Did we not just assassinate that dude, like, yesterday?”

Marc Antony draws back a little for dramatic effect, and, in the interim, I leap to my feet and address the stirring crowd calmly.

“Settle down, you guys — yes, we stabbed the everloving crap out of Julius Caesar, but you’re about to hear what is widely regarded as just about the most thumping-good rhetorical masterpiece evah: you will be thunderstruck and agog as you are lead on a journey challenging and surpassing all the expectations you hold about typical conventions of speech.

“Everything you think you know about eulogies is about to change. Hush, now, Citizens, and let Marc Antony blow ya mind.”

Won’t you please let Marc Antony blow ya mind?