Saturday, November 15, 2008

Let’s Thunderdome, Bitch!

It’s been on my mind lately. Why? Because this movie endures in all the best ways. For instance, in conversation, “in the before time” and “in the long, long ago” comes up a lot, especially at work. And it always means when times were better. And what better comparison than Mad Max 3: Beyond Thunderdome’s grim Bartertown to modern, vaguely annoying, sometimes disappointing, hardly ever mortally dangerous white-collar work life. They are practically the same.

A favorite recent morsel of delight happened on a recent episode of Chuck. The employees of the Buy More (aka, Best Buy) attempt to determine the new Assistant Manager by setting up a Thunderdome ring in the back room of the store. I believe that from this single airing, the suggestion to settle the assignment of tasks via Thunderdome is happening more frequently. Due to the growing lack of office space in our building, I overheard someone (wishfully) suggest determining Who gets What via Thunderdome. I say bring it.

The resurgence has spurred me to seek out my own Mad Max favorites. And for me, “One of the Living” is the best song on the soundtrack, better than “We Don’t Need Another Hero,” because it has a grungier, more rock-bound tone to it. By the way, see that shiny saxophonist? His name is Tim Capello. I had the honor of shrieking Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiim at him outside the loading entrance at the Kansas Coliseum one fine night in 1985.

I’m not much into live performances but the best of the few I’ve seen was Tina Turner, by miles and miles. It was the Private Dancer Tour, of course, and I attended with my wonderful, heathen friends from 8th grade. My friend Alma, also known as La Chola, was this shy, soft spoken girl known for being a good student and friend. She was also known for street fighting on the weekends and coming to school with an impressive collection of cuts and scratches on her face Monday mornings.

While we had so-so seats, being horrendous 13-year olds had its advantages (that, and no parental guidance, woo-hooooo). Alma and Mary dragged me as close to the front as we could get, right on the edge of the hysterical crush of the front, about 8 rows from the stage. There were chairs, if you can believe it, and we ended up standing across three chairs while their actual occupants stood on the very same chairs behind us. What can I say? We were bastards. The guys didn’t seem too mad, more resigned, but it was still an obnoxious thing to do, I know. Irregardless, we got to see everything up close, including the shiny saxophonist, and, of course, Tina in all her glory. Besides the known exceptional qualities she’s possessed all these years—the gams, the moves, the pipes, the talent—she has this otherworldly quality about her. Not just anyone can be “made” into Tina Turner, believe it. The woman was tireless and beyond fantastic.


Is she not incredible, I ask you?

Oh, and is it just me, or does anyone else the resemblance?


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