Jun 24, 2011

Snippet from my book In The Now written 13 years ago on aliens & monkeys.

Saturday, April 24
          After working out for a couple hours while Jake still slept, I finally decided to kick his ass out of bed.
          "Jake, it's a beautiful day and I've been caged in for the past few days when you were working."
          "What time is it," he blinked at me, as he reached for his glass of water on the nightstand.
          "I don't know, almost noon, so we'd better head out soon.  I don't want to miss prime sun time."
          "Van, we're in daylight savings, it'll be light out for hours."
          "But it won't be sunny and warm," I whined and ripped off his covers exposing his nude sweaty body, "Get up!  I want to go to the beach now."
          We took the 101 to Las Virgenes Road.  The radio was on and we drove not speaking.  The windows were rolled all the way down, with the warm air rushing in loudly.  Periodically we smoked.
          "Make note, there is a biker behind us," Jake said, pulling in his cigarette and switching to his right hand so that he could ash inside.  I switched my cigarette too.  "How thoughtful," I thought and smiled at him.
          I felt really happy.  Not superficial happy, but happy to the core.  "What had been wrong with me, look at this place," I thought, as I tried focusing on different things along the highway while everything whizzed by us at 65 miles an hour.  Palm trees, endless green, flowers in bloom, blue sky, and hot sun, California.
I was caged by my mind, I lost sight of why I ever came out here in the first place wishing deep down inside that I had the money to move back, live in NY City.  "Christ, what was I thinking?"  There is nothing like this in NY.  California truly is beautiful, so long as you get out of the city.
We turned onto Las Virgenes Road.
          The road is narrow and windy and takes you through very rural parts of Los Angeles County before it spits you out onto a mountain road through Malibu Canyon, the kind of road that can really mess with your perspective--mountain up close and moving fast on your right and a quick drop off to your left with more mountain on the other side of a deep canyon, moving very slow.  All the beauty in this world so lost, so unappreciated.  Where did it all go wrong?
          The paved road our car traveled on turned quick, then entered a tunnel built into or dug out of a part of the mountain.  Humans were like a disease infecting the Earth.  It's so weird when you think about it.  All other animals, mammals, fish, and birds adapt to their surroundings.  They make do and survive with that which Earth provides them, in turn they give back to the Earth with their decomposing bodies enriching the soil so that new life may grow and feed other life.  It is all a very complicated and complex cycle, but it works.  Not only does it work, but also it does not destroy the Earth or pollute the Earth.  Rather it helps maintain the Earth, it helps evolution.  Everything works for everything else all in conjunction, except people.
Humans take their surroundings and change them to serve their everlasting needs and desires.  We destroy nature and pollute Earth.  Without our advanced abilities in adapting that which is around us, we would not be able to survive.  Humans do not have the gift of adapting to their surroundings that every other life organism seems to have.  It's almost as if we were never really meant to be here, or as if we were never really from here, more importantly.  It saddens me that we have destroyed so much beauty and life.  I point this out to Jake.
          "I know.  It's true.  We are like a disease or a virus infecting earth, running around and mutating earth cells to help propagate our species."  He adds.
          I think about how I wish I had the ability to pull up all the paved roads and plant grass.  The entire Earth is caught in a tangled web of paved roads like a fish caught in a net.  I am dwelling on this, when my mind jumps and takes it a step further.
          "It's as if we are the aliens."
          He agreed, "I've always thought that."
          I looked at him shocked, but pleased, "We are the aliens.  We run around making up stories about some alien race that comes down to Earth and takes over, but in reality, we are the alien race that came down to Earth and took it over.  Our overactive imagination and obsession with aliens is really archival memories stored in our genes that pop up in the form of stories of abductions and what not.  The X Files.  But we aren't the ones the aliens are after.  Those stories are about us.  We are the aliens.  But we are so far removed from our history that we don't remember doing it.  That's how we know there is intelligent life out there.  That could be the explanation for so many things.  God even.  Of course, it doesn't explain the missing link, or evolution."
          Jake disagreed, "But it does explain it.  What if the aliens bred with…"
          "The monkeys!"  I shouted.
          "Well, I was going to say Chimpanzees."
"But they must have bred with various types of monkey, which would explain the various races."
          "A lot of people would disagree with that because they wouldn't like the idea of being descendants of monkeys.  That's why Darwin was so controversial.  It's not a pleasant thought."
          "Yeah, but we are also descendants from the aliens.  That's why we can't adapt to our surroundings like pure monkeys can."
          I was getting really excited because I felt like I really stumbled onto something.  If my theory were true it would explain so many things about the odd nature of human beings and the contradictions which existed in my mind and body.
I have always felt out of place, not from this world.  I have always disliked the limitations of my body, because my mind can go to so many places and conjure up so many possibilities of what I could do with it that the human side of myself does not permit.
One of my big contradictions is the ability to give birth.  Within my hypothesis, I discovered an explanation for my paradox nature.  Mayhaps the aliens did not reproduce the way in which humans do, but we inherited that from the monkeys.  I also believe that some people are more in tune with their monkey or animal side than their alien side, especially some women.  Women, with their ability to make life, are very grounded in Mother Nature.  I hate this about myself, but wish I didn't since I would like to be able to love everything about my being.  But I do not.  I just don't dig the whole carnal thing.
In high school biology most of the girls walked away from viewing The Miracle of Birth video with a new-found appreciation for their gift of motherhood, I looked at it like a curse.  I am scared to death of birth and babies.  I look at a baby inside me as a parasite and the actual experience of giving birth as a fate worse than death.  The blood, the pain, it all seems so wrong to me.  So vile and unclean.  Like having a period, though, at least that does not result in then having some little creature that is totally helpless and completely reliant on you.  Some women think that that is a beautiful thing.  I see it as purely an unnecessary burden.  That's why I love my cats.
You can feed 'em in the morning, leave for the day, come home and feed them again.  Sometimes they beg for attention, but mostly they do their own thing.  Babies wouldn't bug me so much if they were more self-sufficient.  But even then, I could get a nanny and not worry about having to be there 24-7.
But still, I can't get over the whole birth process.  It really sickens me.  I don't know how other women do it.  All I can imagine is that most women are born with a certain program that allows them to do it.  They don't even question it.  They even want to make babies.  It's all part of nature's way of maintaining a species.  The fear, the doubt, the repulsion is not there.  Instead there is awe and pride.
Sometimes I wish I had that program installed and not the other one because it would be so much easier since I am a woman and do have that ability.  If I truly were a product made entirely from this natural world, wouldn't I just accept my role?  I think so, therefore I find validation in my alien/monkey theory.
I am too much alien and not enough monkey to fit in here.  Yet I am enough monkey to feel empathy with the Earth and feel sorrow for all the crap our alien side has done in order to mutate the natural world in order to protect our species above everything else.
Oh to exist inside this mortal dichotomy and be aware of it is all too much.  So I shut up, tried to stop thinking, turned up the radio and flipped through the stations.
          In keeping with my uncanny ability to find U2 songs on the radio, I stumbled onto "Until the End of the World."  How apropos.
          "In my dreams I was drowning my sorrows, but my sorrows they learned to swim…"
          Just then, we turned that corner that opened up to the breathtaking view of the Pacific Ocean.  With my body covered with chills and a grin plastered on my face, my mind found silence and my soul peace.
          Jake began talking about the film "Until the End of the World" by Wim Wenders.  It is one of my favorite movies.  I have always been obsessed with my dreams, as I believe that they are an important key to finding "the answer," the meaning of life.  I believe they are doorways to the subconscious, the dead, the past, the future, and another world.

Once I dreamt that I was on the Moon, though I didn't know it at first.  In fact I only assume it was the moon.  The terrain was all gray.  The sky was night filled, but bright.  I could see no sun.  I was standing in some sort of industrial park type area.  There were workmen rushing about.  Their movements were inhumanly fast as compared to my own.  They were also very small, yet quite efficient.
Everything was gray, not only the landscape, but also the buildings, the clothes, even the faces.  Not a spec of color, except me.  No one seemed to notice me though, which was good.
I tried to grasp where I was, but couldn't, until I looked up and saw the Earth hovering in the distant sky like the Moon only larger.  I couldn't believe it.  I had dreamt of many places on Earth I had never been to, people I'd never met, but never ever had I dreamt that I was actually on another planet nor had I ever seen such a breathtaking perspective of planet Earth, not even in NASA videos or Hollywood films.  It was unreal.

Jun 5, 2011

Allan Loeb Screenwriting Contest

Well, we didn't win the Allan Loeb Screenwriting Contest. I'm actually kind of relieved, as we never really wrote it to win it, we just wrote it for fun and for the experience of entering a screenwriting contest, but it still stings on some level that we didn't even make finalist.

Regardless, I still think what we wrote was pretty hilarious and we received rave reviews on it from almost everyone who read it.

So, without further ado, now for the first time ever, you, too, can read our failed contest entry screenplay, if you like. I don't know if we'll ever finish it, especially since I'm juggling two other screenplays right now, but I'm proud of it and just might want to revisit it again another time.

Logline (as created by Allan Loeb): "A group of married men desperate for one last bachelor party invents a long-lost friend who’s about to be wed, but things get out of control when their wives want to meet the groom before the big event."