Tiger Swallowtail


Summery day.
Butterflies aloft
drift down
to bask in
the root of the earth.
Gathering, an admiring rain
pools gossamer
over yellow wings.


No More Going to the Movies

Due to budgeting constraints (a.k.a. I am poor) I’ve mostly given up watching movies in theaters, which is pretty disastrous. I love going to movies alone, sinking into another word, the way one can do with a book. It’s a lot easier with a film however, mostly because you don’t need to jog your imagination or read backwards if you’re slogging through a series and forgot this plot thread, or that character a la George R.R. Martin‘s “A Song of Fire and Ice.” Plus, if you get yourself into a good movie, you’ll get a neatly wrapped story in two hours or less instead of maybe sitting through a serial drama or condemning the sci-fi gods for canceling “Firefly.”

There’s a smorgasbord of pros to movie watching, but if you’re tired of shelling out money to go do it (like me), you’ve got to remind yourself of the OTHER cons. Here are a few, in case you wake up craving popcorn and those horrible 3D glasses that give you headache:

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Ek Tha Tiger

I recently walked into the movie theater blind and watched “Ek Tha Tiger,” which turned out to be an unevenly paced Bollywood spy rom-com. It alternately picked fun at its own spy genre, took its sappy love-story too seriously, and surprised me by igniting a final great action sequence (no CGI required!). But while the movie was a bumpy ride with its highs and lows, just watching a movie intended for an Indian populace was novel to me:

RAW and ISI replaced the equivalent of CIA and KGB. The typical exotic locales of New Delhi, Singapore, and Seoul were exchanged for Cuba and Scotland. That’s right, Scotland. Our Romeo and Juliet-esque characters weren’t separated by the name of their houses, but by the names of their countries: India and Pakistan.

They say falling in love is accompanied by the sound of music. In “Ek Tha Tiger” it really is, along with some great dancing! That’s what the movie feels like; what would be a normal, forgettable summer blockbuster in America is transmuted with a few deft, cultural twists.