It’s a good thing when it leads to potentially better outcomes.

Example: Nouriel “Nostradamus” Roubini, my current geek idol (his Global EconoMonitor (“RGE”) is on my blogroll to the lower right). Roubini has been led the economic community not only in making predictions but also proscriptions with respect to the recent economic meltdowns, the latest example being among the first to call the hedge fund disasters (even my intellectual and aesthetic equal Liz Ann only nailed that today).

It’s a little scary when it leads to utter despair.

Example: Mike Judge, the genius behind Idiocracy. While this masterpiece had (and still has) me in tears, they are bittersweet tears: the film uncannily portrays the lamentable trajectory of American history, illustrating how tragedy and comedy are 2 parts of the same phenomena (i.e. things are just not as they should be).

Luke Wilson makes me cry, and I’m developing a strong affection for him.

The Weekend of Causing Scenes, Part 1

My friend Tony clued me into an interesting phenomenon: “Improv Everywhere” – whose tagline is, “we cause scenes.” Full deets at the site but for here, it’s enough to know that the experience involved:
1) downloading an Mp3 but NOT listening in advance
2) procuring a balloon, an umbrella & wearing a green, yellow, red or blue t-shirt
3) syncing your watch/clock/timekeeping device of choice PRECISELY to their website
4) arriving at Dolores Park, SF locked & loaded at 2pm PST

I tackled items #1 & #4 on my own, and was helped by Tony on #2…but utterly failed at #3.

The result?

A tapestry of Monty Python-esque hilarity that tapped into the creative, free-spirited playful inner-child….undeniably the best way to spend a sunny fall day in the park 1/2 block from my front door.

Alas, the issue with respect to #3 did, however, lead to a slightly out-of-sync experience which itself was fairly revealing. It made me realize that some people actually live this way 24X7. Just a little bit off the mainstream clock. Which leads to all kinds of interesting behaviors and perceptions. Very enlightening. I’m not naming names.

Participants ready themselves to enter into the climactic, Monty Python-esque “EPIC BATTLE” as promised by the omnipresent “Steve.”

BREAKING NEWS 10/20/08: the video has been posted and includes some of the music that really contributed to the hilarity of this experience. And, incredibly, apart from my 4 friends I attended with I also happened to “run in” to my co-worker Cory there – check him out at 1:48!:

Mp3 Experiment San Francisco from ImprovEverywhere on Vimeo.

Trauma and ensuing recovery

my sanity…my heroes

My friend – who is out about watching Fox TV – had to cancel dinner, which freed me up to witness in real-time what I sensed – horribly, in my innermost core – would be a trainwreck of gutterally epic proportions. My sense of dread was so great that I knew I couldn’t be alone…I simply had to be among others to avoid being reduced to a fetal-positioned wet noodle by 6:05pm PST.

The strategy worked: I lasted until exactly 6:35pm PST!

But there is only so much a human can take. By 6:50pm I was alternating between fervent, assenting house-motions accompanying Biden’s unrattled, experience-driven and germane remarks which addressed the questions posed, to barely dangling by a thread, head-in-between-knees babbling creature as Palin winked & smiled knowingly at the camera while she avoided the questions posed in order to spew out the sound bytes she’d invariably been fed in her boot-camp prep over the past week.

O Lord, thank you for that 30-minute extension of relative emotional health!

Dare I list all the infuratingly frustrating examples that sent me into such a nearly-frothing psychological ball of goo? That had me muttering under my breath and groaning “ooooooohhhh” the entire way home….to try to seek solace with my neighbors who were listening to the time-delayed broadcast but knowing I couldn’t bear to hear another subatomic particle of ‘golly gee I really get it even if I don’t know anything but that’s not my achilles heel it’s my strength’ messaging lest I wished to remain a functional member of society….

…at last to enter my home, pop in some amazing rap and dance…REALLY HARD….

I have a whole sheet full of -isms, sayings, contradictions and the like which may be therapeutic to elaborate on…but on the other hand, such an exercise just might keep me down in that low, desolate place that has me wondering if we are no longer in a place to support a healthy democracy in this country.

So I’ll weigh it out. Can’t bring myself to even read the pundits’ recap yet. All I know is that for now, there is hope. With some good music, I’m coming back.