The Power Trio

Gary and Alex looked at each other across the old hermit’s fire.

“I feel your hesitation,” the blind old hermit murmured. “But the prophecy is quite clear. Your quest will fail if you remove John from your fellowship.”

Gary cleared his throat.

“It’s just that…even John is wondering if he can go on with us,” he tried to explain.

“He told us he thinks our group is just some fly by night operation,” Alex added. “Whatever that means.”

“And we’ve met this new guy,” Gary continued. “We really connected with him, you know. Like the two hemispheres of the mind becoming one.”

“We’ll just ease John out,” said Alex. “Exit stage left, you know.”

The hermit sighed heavily.

“If the prophecy does not dissuade you, what else can I say? Your quest is on the edge of a knife, and you may soon feel the steel’s caress in your very soul!”

With a great puff of smoke that filled the dark, dank cave–presto! the hermit vanished. The young men sat uncomfortably for a few minutes.

“I guess we’re supposed to leave now,” Alex finally said.

“Then let’s make like the pictures and move,” Gary urged.

“That doesn’t really make sense, Gary,” Alex pointed out.

With heavy thoughts, the pair walked down Hermit’s Hill into the small Canadian town below. The questioning wind ruffled the grass making permanent waves in the night.

“What time is it?” Alex wondered.

Gary checked his watch.

“9:12,” he answered. “Neil should be waiting.”

At the edge of their home village, sure enough, Neil waited for them. To pass the time he was beating out complex rhythms on the fenceposts encircling the town.

“Hey, Neil!” Gary called out.

Neil watched them as the young men walked over.

“What did the hermit say?” he asked.

“He just reminded us of the prophecy again,” Alex said. He glanced at Gary, who nodded.

“But Alex and I think we have something bigger than prophecy,” Gary said. “We’d like to roll the bones and try our own luck.”

“The signals are undeniable,” Neil stated confidently. “But are you sure, Gary?”

“I think from this moment I’m going by my nickname only. So call me Geddy.”

Neil put his hand out.

“So are we doing this?” he asked officially.

“I say yes,” Alex said, putting his hand on Neil’s. “The band’s been under a lot of pressure, but I think we can make our way through with grace.”

“Shall we choose a path that’s clear?” Neil asked.

Geddy laughed and added his hand to the group, declaring with pride:

“I will choose free will!”

 

{for the Rush fans}

 

The preceding tale is for the weekly Tipsy Lit story contest. This week’s prompt is: What happens when free will conflicts with prophecy? The term free will sent my prog-loving mind down the course you just read. On Saturday, Tipsy Lit posts the links to the story entries and readers vote for their favorite. Therefore, you will vote for me. Yes? Well, if you want to–we choose free will over here on T of V.

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Yom HaShoah

holocaust remembrance day

27 Nisan (yesterday) of the Jewish calendar is Holocaust Day (Yom HaShoah), or the even more awesome variation Yom HaZikaron laShoah ve-laGvura, which means Holocaust and Heroism Remembrance Day.

From 1935’s Nuremberg Laws, designed to identify exactly who and what constituted a Jew, through the end of World War II in 1945, approximately six million Jews were exterminated by Nazi Germany. This means of roughly the nine million Jewish people residing in Europe during those days, two-thirds died.

These are facts. This happened.

Before you think I’m being simple or pedantic here, remember there are people who deny the Holocaust was that awful, they think that’s all just propaganda or something. Some even claim the Holocaust never happened at all. Some people feel it should happen again. All over the world these people exist. Even in Europe. Even in America.

I think Holocaust Remembrance Day should exist in every country, not just Israel. It’s not just for the Jewish people, but for all of us. Remembrance is recognized by many nations, though not always the same date. A number of European countries, including Germany, commemorate the day on January 27, the date in 1945 when Auschwitz was liberated. Israel chose April 27, 27 Nisan on their calendar, as a date in between the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and Israeli Independence Day.

With parts of Ukraine reportedly now calling for “Jewish Registration”, and even Donald Sterling’s recent “Don’t bring black people to my games,” we must never forget the extremes that discrimination of any kind can go to.

It’s on our calendars, but it’s not really part of the mainstream in America. It should be, because some painful things must never be forgotten. So I urge you to take a few moments of your time today to think about this (I know it was yesterday, but I’m slow). Also you might read about the Warsaw Uprising and the Nuremberg Rally and such. Just as a reminder of how vigilant we must remain.

Because it could happen again. But we won’t let it, will we?

holocaust remembrance day

Ridley Scott’s Prometheus Gets the Treatment

(So T of V just got hold of the actual original treatment for Ridley Scott’s would-be magnum opus Prometheus. A treatment, in film-making terms, is the written outline of a proposed project that hits upon the highlights of a movie in hopes of getting a studio to pony up the big bucks to produce it. If you saw Prometheus, and were a bit perplexed by it, maybe this behind the scenes look at what they were thinking prior to making it will help you come to some understanding.

But will it answer the biggest question of all: Why would someone allot upwards of $150 million dollars to make this?) Continue reading

Fifth Nerd Triathlon: Controversy Edition

So its high time for another running of T of V’s Nerd Triathlon. This is an event where I weigh in on a trio of topics of dire consequence to the World Legion of Geeks and Fanatics. Limbered up and ready to go?

holmes and watson

This way, Cumberbitches!

Continue reading

Herbie Hancock

So today is the birthday of Herbert Jeffrey Hancock, the coolest cat in the universe and my favorite jazz musician.

herbie hancock

Call me Herbie!

Herbie was sought out by Miles Davis to take the piano spot in his second great quintet starting in 1963 when Hancock was only twenty-three. (But that’s nothing; Tony Williams the drummer was seventeen!) Along with bassist Ron Carter, this trio became what I believe was the finest rhythm section in all of jazz. Oh yeah, I said it.

davis second quintet

The quintet at play–herbie, miles, ron, wayne shorter on sax and tony

Even while recording and performing with Miles for the next decade or so, Herbie was already making records of his own as a bandleader and composer. Classically trained, Hancock’s style is melodic and persuasive. His compositions also frequently cross over into funk, soul and pop arenas as they are some of the most accessible of all jazz music–in a good way. He’s one of the prime movers of post-bop jazz, i.e., fusion. If awards are your thing, Herbie’s racked up more grammys than God. Or even Taylor Swift and Michael Jackson. (Herbie’s fourteen is one more than Michael got.)

herbie and band

Herbie in the seventies with the Headhunters (I think)…

I just love Herbie’s creativity, his joy in music. For people who don’t think they can “get” jazz, I’m convinced he’s the guy to try. Like I said, accessible in a good way. Some day I will do my definitive Herbie Hancock post so look out for that.

T of V ecstatically wishes Mr. Herbie Hancock a beautiful birthday. He’s turning seventy-four today, and still producing great albums year after year. If you don’t know his work, please listen to some today.

herbie hancock

Damn, that man’s got soul. Happy birthday!

A Liberal Doesn’t…

glenn beck

So as most Americans have realized, there is a deep divide between our two major political parties today; deeper, arguably, then it has ever been. Hell, most of the world has noticed that we can’t get along enough to pass the simplest of matters through our congress anymore, much less the important shit. Is this because of a difference in ideals, morals, ethics or any other pretense that both parties like to invoke, I assume sarcastically? Continue reading

The Hydra in Winter: T of V Reviews a Movie That Just Opened in Theaters!

So yeah, I went to the cinema for one of my bimonthly visits. What did I see?

You can’t seriously be asking me that! A new Marvel movie just came out. Whadja think I saw?

No spoilers ahead….but just barely. Continue reading