This Afternoon’s Broadcast is brought to you by…

Chris Rea.

Friday Open Thread 

This Afternoon’s Broadcast is brought to you by…

Gerry Rafferty.

Felines of Adventure

We all know the stereotypes about cats: they’re lazy homebodies who sit around the house all day waiting to be fed. There’s a fair amount of truth to that, at least among the housecats I know, but not all cats are the same, and a recent trend has been challenging that stereotype. Cat owners have been leash-training their cats and taking them on hiking, climbing and other adventures with them, sometimes all over the world. The cats have taken to adventuring quite well. A website called Adventure Cats has been documenting the trend, collecting their stories and accompanying Instagram pics.

Here are a few examples:

A veterinarian from Madison, Wisconsin, takes his cat on surfing, sailing and other expeditions all over the world.

Cat

Catboat

Catskiing
Continue reading Felines of Adventure

Thursday Open Thread 

This Afternoon’s Broadcast is brought to you by…

Al Stewart.

From The Trailer Park - Rememory

A professor is murdered shortly after inventing a device that records all of your memories. A friend (Peter Dinklage) uses the machine to sort through his memories and find the people responsible for the murder. Also stars Anton Yelchin, Julia Ormond, Henry Ian Cusack, Martin Donovan. Directed by Mark Palansky (A Series of Unfortunate Events).

This looks like an interesting sci-fi thriller (which uses a very similar premise to an underrated Robin Williams movie called The Final Cut). Regardless of whether it’s good or not, it will sadly be remembered in film history as the last film of Anton Yelchin.

Wednesday Open Thread

This Afternoon’s Broadcast is brought to you by…

Duran Duran.

When Did you First See the Matrix?

Ace had an interesting question for his readers that could be fun to duplicate here:

When did you begin to suspect that the people in charge of the government and the media were dumb, ignorant, and sometimes actually deranged, and what confirmed it for you? What were your feelings about this? That is, was it like taking the Red Pill? Was it scary?

There were a few, iterative steps for me, and I’ll list those in the comments, but it was actually one rather minor event that caused the scales to fall from my eyes.

I used to be a big fan of News Programs; “60 Minutes,” “48 Hours,” “Dateline…” I especially liked when they’d corner and humiliate some greedy, corporate executive. I loved Michael Moore’s film, “Roger and Me,” and I watched every episode of his television show.

I was watching “Dateline” when they did a show on the potential for some manufacturer’s truck to explode when hit in a certain spot. To show where the impact spot was they staged a truck being hit, and, incredibly it burst into flames! I was astounded! Even by their reporting it was not a 100% thing. It just happened sometimes. But the fact that I saw, with my own eyes, the one time they made an attempt a fire ensued I knew it most be a major design flaw. Worse even than the speculation in their reporting. Ha-ha! Another greedy corporate Exec was going to have to hide from their cameras next week!

And then it came to light that the fire was staged. The “Dateline” crew had rigged the truck so it would ignite. The whole thing was a fraud. I couldn’t wait for next week’s episode when my journalism heroes, Jane Pauley and Stone Phillips would call out the frauds in their own news division, just as they had done with so many titans of industry in episodes prior. I thought there was a high likelihood one or both of them would make a statement condemning their Network’s behavior and resign from the show.

But that’s not what they did. They took turns reading a prepared statement, obviously written by corporate executives and their in-house legal counsel, then they signed off, and came back next week like nothing had ever happened. That’s when I realized the “News” is the exact same thing as the sit-coms, variety shows, game shows and drama series on television. It’s all just there to sell soap and the newsmen and women are actors and entertainers, just like the rest of them.

Regarding Ace’s question. No, it wasn’t scary for me. I knew the world had a lot of corrupt people. That wasn’t new. Just like a televangelist getting caught with his secretary wouldn’t make me question my faith. It wasn’t scary because I knew people can be liars and frauds. But seeing that no one in an entire news division took a principled stance against a fraud perpetrated in their name caused me to see that it’s all a production, unmoored from principle. With the scales gone I couldn’t watch the shows any more and found myself enjoying the extra free time.