the long goodbye, part II
My laptop died on me recently. So, I immediately went to see about a Genius in town.
|This was not my Genius. He's a random G from Flickr.|
Imagine my surprise when I learned that the Genius told me that computer was still alive and well, but death took place here.
The Genius lent me his cord for a minute, so I could download all the files onto a flash drive. When I was done, he promptly coiled the cord back up and put it away behind the counter and told me to look on EBay. What did he think I was going to do, jump the Genius Bar and make a run with his cord...
This is like having a car, a destination, a full tank of gas, but no key. My laptop is sitting right there, in a permanent sleep mode, still with a little life left in him, but I no longer have the power...
So I did the next best thing. When you're working at a software company, there are computers and peripherals galore, just wasting away. I had three at my mercy and a fourth as a backup at all times.
He helped me look through the bins of hardware at Adobe, but I came up short. All of their laptops had long since upgraded a while back. But he said he'd keep an eye out.
Later that week, I was talking to a colleague at his desk. When I leaned on his filing cabinet, I noticed the very cord I was looking for right there by my fingers. He said he wasn't using the computer for now, so I could borrow it for a while.
So, now I have a cord on lease – but I have to return it eventually.
This is seriously turning into a dysfunctional relationship. It's like we know the relationship is doomed but we keep getting back together again. It is indeed the Long Goodbye.
A few weeks ago when I was home sick, hugging my Puffs with Lotion box, I sank into my beanbag and watched my favorite, The Long Goodbye.
You'll notice my list of favorites is quite long, but this one is a special one, Elliot Gould as Philip Marlowe. He's the quintessential anti-hero. He's cynical, meandering, and does not follow the Boy Scout credo - especially that part about keeping physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.
Needless to say, I have a mad screen-crush on this character. But I also love the film itself. It's exactly how I remember my early years in 70's LA. Sunny, fluid and unstructured. And it also shows me parts of LA that I didn't experience as a 6 year-old – depraved, dark and lonely. This is the most straight narrative of all of Altman's films. I know exactly how the supermarket smells that Philip enters at 2AM looking for curry-brand cat food. I can practically taste the air. I also remember PCH looking more shabby than chic back in the day. And people really pulled off 70's fashion, not just as hipster irony.
There's also a choice cameo of the Schwarzen-ator featured as a bodyguard thug who has to strip down to his skivvies. I heard he doesn't ever acknowledge having been in this film. C'mon, Bob Altman's the best director you've ever worked for, admit it.
It famously features the title track of the same name, written by John Williams and Johnny Mercer, throughout the film. It starts off with the Dave Grusin Trio, yes, another of my faves. But then it weaves and bobs through practically every cut. You could easily make a drinking game of taking a shot each time you hear a variation on the theme. Even the door bell at Nina Van Pallandt's beach house plays the tune.
Bottoms up, sailor. The Long Goodbye has just begun.