Tuesday, December 19, 2006

God's Boxer

It goes without saying my insomnia is keeping me up. I got in bed early tonight, because my body is really hurting (mostly from stress...our department meetings today really took a great deal of energy). My wife? Asleep. My son? Asleep. Me...not so much.
However, when I can't sleep, I start watching bad TV. Tonight, I watched Pat Robertson interviewing Sylvester Stallone about Rocky Balboa.
Let me start by saying that I am a fan of the Rocky movies. They are, in some ways, allegories for America and its way of life.
Rocky: The American Dream. Given the opportunity, anyone has the ability to achieve a goal.
Rocky II: Neo-American Dream: Desire and perspiration will win out over ego and flash.
Rocky III: Complaceny: If we become complacent and stop trying to achieve, we will lose our dreams.
Rocky IV: We're better than the Russians (that's very simplistic).
Rocky V: If we forget where we come from and who we are, we are doomed.

Now, this is just my opinion on the matter. However, in watching Sly talking to Robertson, I learned the original Rocky is actually Christian allegory. Yup. I had no clue.
The film starts with a shot of Jesus, then pans to the ressurection, then shows Rocky.
I figured that was an artistic choice, but it's actually to show that Rocky will be a Christian Warrior. A man who begins with nothing and fights for an ideal, not glory. Beyond that, it's not the championship that is important but the idea of family.
Recall the end of the film: He's lost the title, but that's not what he cares about at all. He calls out to Adrian and feels pride in making it into a fight instead of a drubbing.
Each of the films is about needing and asking for help from those around you as well as understanding that family and friends are more important than anything else (though I would argue part IV is more about appealing to a patriotic audience instead of the original crowd).
Stallone went on to explain that the new film is the bookend to the original. Both deal with a man coming to terms with his God.
I just find this fascinating. In the course of my life, I have seen the original Rocky four times, but never had I thought about the God aspect. I really thought the point of the film was the American Dream. A man taking advantage of his chance to better himself.
You, dear reader, may decide to see Rocky Balboa (which is opening tomorrow). Go for it (to use a Rocky term).
I'm going to need to re-watch the original Rocky to see this allegory.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Ramblings for the Evening (12/18/2006)

Let's do it.
So, without further ado: YOU THINK YOU KNOW ME?
Sick Kid:
My son was really sick over the weekend. Nothing makes you feel like a terrible parent like your kid being sick.
He would cry, I had no idea what to do.
We tried feeding him, that didn't help.
We'd cradle him, but that didn't help.
On Friday, I left school early, because my son had a fever of 101. That's grounds to send him home. One doctor appointment later, I learn he has an ear infection, breathing issues (they think it's an infection too), and a stomach virus. Awesome.
He barely ate over the weekend, barely slept, and his fever finally broke today.
I stayed home with my son today, and I'm honestly more exhausted from that than from a full week of teaching. He constantly needed to be held, which meant I couldn't get any work done (hard to grade with a kid on your shoulders).
After another appointment today, the doctor confirmed the original diagnosis: The kid is really sick.
I just really hope he doesn't get what I had as a kid: Febrial Convulsions.
I would get really hot and then have to take an ambulance ride to hospital to help me breathe and cool down.
My sister (#2) was actually angry at me when she was a kid, because she was supposed to get ice cream...but I had a convulsion...which meant no ice cream.
As for my son...well...he's sleeping right now, but for the last two nights, he's slept for twenty minutes, wakes up, looks at my wife and I...and then throws up all over the place. It's fun.
New Nickname:
Every single in the Twin Cities better start calling Jason DeRusha "White Chocolate". Did you see his
recent story on "pimping" rides? The way he hangs with Pat Williams? Dude's become White Chocolate.
Random Thoughts:
* I miss
* My wife and I wrapped one the trees in front of our house with all blue lights. As such, our neighbors now think that we are trying to celebrate both Christmas and Channukah. Apparently, so I am told, all blue lights means Jew. Yup...forget the yellow star, folks, it's all about the blue lights now.
* I find it fascinating how Target has put ALL of its holiday decorations on 30% clearance the week before Christmas. I was picking up my son's prescription tonight and listened to this old couple talking about how cheap everything was now.
"I really like that moving bear....We should buy three of them. It would look nice."
"Yes, Doris."
Gas Station People Watching:
For some reason (call it luck of the draw) it seems I am always having to fill up the cars my wife and I drive (we switch off everyday).
Whenever I go to fill up the car now, there's a long line with people using their passive-aggresive driving skills to yell at people at keep other drivers at bay.
So, with nothing else to do, I start watching people while I'm waiting.
There's the couple who are arguing while filling up the car. Even better, with people waiting to get up to the pump, the girl slams the car door and walks off...and the guy has to chase after her. That means he's left the car...and pump unattended. It also means we have to wait until they return so the next car can fill up.
The best moment, however, comes from the guys who pull up on the pump opposite from me.
"Smokey" (apparently his real name) and "Dodge" (no idea) talk about how slow the pump is working...for ten minutes.
"This MUST be the slowest pump EVER," I hear no less than six times.

Then Smokey (this isn't a joke) lights up a cig. Dodge freaks out.
"Get that thing away from here, Smokey. I don't want to die."
"What's your problem? It's not a real warning...they just don't like smokers."
Here's my thought on this: "Let me finish filling up before we explode."
I keep telling my kids: just stop anywhere there's a crowd and just listen. You'll hear amazing things and learn a great deal about life. Try it.
That's all I got tonight.