Grade-A Weirdos, Vol. 1

Movies make really boring things seem really glamorous and fun.  Like whenever they paint a house or are driving somewhere in a movie and they use fun music and pretty colors, it makes me want to paint my house or drive somewhere.  Even though I’d usually stop halfway through both those things.  Or I’d get distracted by a delicious snack. And movies make weird kooks seem supercool and fun.  Whereas in real life I’d probably disregard, ignore, and/or throw something, be it hurtful words or objects, at them and run like the Charles Dickens. People may or may not think I’m a kook for whatever their personal problems are…sometimes I do things for no reason and without warning and refuse to do other things for any reason and with plenty of warning.  But.  In any event.  I like watching these people do the kooky things they do in movies and talk their silly ways and wear their nutty clothes and prance their prances.
Grade-A Weirdos


Sissy Spacek & Shelley Duvall


I group them together since they appear together in 3 Women, a movie about weirdos I don’t entirely understand but can nevertheless really enjoy.   And you might be saying, “How can you enjoy something if you don’t understand it??”  And I’d say, “Don’t you enjoy the moon and the tides??  Don’t you enjoy airplanes??  Don’t you enjoy chocolate milk?  I don’t understand any of that garbage, but I like it.  I LOVE it.”  That’s the end of that conversation.  I’ve made my point and you get just sit on it.


For this lesson, great examples of their Grade-A Weirdo qualities will be found in the aforementioned 3 Women, and then in The Shining, Badlands and Annie Hall.  So we begin with Badlands and Sissy.

Skip the movie trailer if you haven’t seen it or watch it if you won’t watch the movie.



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Now, Our Brief and Pointy Discussion of Sissy in Badlands-

In Badlands, we get Sissy being a real and true charming dunderhead.  She gets roped into Martin Sheen’s killing spree.  But it’s all so pretty and quirky, who really cares about the murders??  People, obviously.  But.  Sissy is not a murderer, she’s an actress!  She’s a freckly little star.  In the movie, she’s so innocent and he’s just a regular little gentleman as they frolic in the woods, play with batons, set fires, drive around, and kill a few people.  Romance and adventure and a balloon somewhere in there. And it’s really just so pretty!  Prettyprettypretty.  See -



Grade-A Weirdo, through and through.  Not that being a Grade-A Weirdo makes you a dum-dum.  She’s not entirely in her altogethers some big dummy dum-dum.  She can twirl a baton and play piano!  Those are both skills I plan on developing.  Who wouldn’t be jealous  of a baton-twirling piano-player?  Anyway, we both like shorts.  And wear them.  And we like riding in cars.  Other than the whole killing people thing, I could really get on board with this simpleton.  She likes a guy who hates litter.  I like guys who hate litter, too!  They get on just fine.  They have a nice little life for a bit playing house in the forest.  What’s a house in a forest?  A cabin?  But they live in a tree, so a tree house, I guess.  They play tree house.  It makes me want to build a treehouse and then live in it.  But maybe someone else could build it and I could supervise.  Or they could point me at things and direct me.  I’m no builder.  I’m a creator, but not a builder.  I’m a destroyer, but not a builder.  I just want to play tree house.

And some people might watch this movie and decide to come to my tree house.  They would pull the string that rings the bell by my bed.  I would get up and go to the window.   They would look at me all mad and fat-faced and yell, “HEY!  These kids are terrible.  They need jobs!  You need to live in a house house, not a tree house!  A tree is no life for a man!  A man is not a bird!  A man is not a squirrel, nor a bug!  Get out of that tree!”

And I’d say, “WHOA!  Whoa, there.  A lot of houses are made of trees - so BAM!  You’re in a tree house already.  I’ll bet that blew your mind wide open.  And living in a tree house is a job!  You could get knocked over or blown over or intimidated by those birds, squirrels and bugs you speak of so cavalierly at any moment!  The greatest people can be brought down by the smallest of bugs!  I almost couldn’t sleep in my bed because a spider was in it!  And I’m much taller than a spider.  MUCH.  And I had to throw out a sandwich because another tiny bug was on it!  And need I remind you of my squirrel poo almost-disaster??  And giant birds can be scary.  Like an ostrich.  Those things are nuts.  Have you seen their eggs?  They’d make you an omelet so big it’d make you sick if you ate it all at once.  And how couldn’t you??  These are powerful creatures.  Get in a tree and live the life and then you may speak from a place of knowledge - a TREE of knowledge!”  I probably wouldn’t yell at you so much.  Maybe not at all.  Maybe I’d just drop my soilings bucket out the window of my tree house and let you shake hands with the business end of that.  Maybe.  But who is to say.  I am.  I am to say.  And I would.
A tree house, a free house,
A secret you and me house,
A high up in the leafy branches
Cozy as can be house.

A street house, a neat house,
Be sure and wipe your feet house
Is not my kind of house at all-
Let’s go live in a tree house.


Stay tuned for Grade-A Weirdos, Vol.2 - in which we discuss Shelley Duvall in Annie Hall.