One thing which makes a movie or story great is that its themes and episodes can help us describe situations in our lives, understand the actions of others or help elucidate the human condition. While many people fault The Godfather: Part III for being inferior to the first two flicks in the franchise, it does have its moments, particularly the scene where Al Pacino‘s Michael Corleone bemoans his inability to leave his mob past behind him:
I sometimes feel the same way about politics. When I moved to LA, I intended to keep out of politics, tired of how friends and acquaintances would steer our conversations to politics upon learning that this literature-loving, Beowulf– and Tolkien-quoting, well-read film buff happened to be a gay Republican.
And this week, I would rather have focused on other things, notably my fascination with the quality and success of George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire and developing a curriculum to teach mythology while looking for places to teach it. Not to mention, debating whether I should write this fantasy epic that has been stirring in my subconscious for about eight years, how to go about naming the characters and researching its background.
Yesterday, while at the gym, I was delighted to find myself on a cardio machine next to someone else reading a volume from Martin’s opus. He was reading the first book, Game of Thrones, on his iPad while I was beginning the third volume, Storm of Swords, in a mass-market paperback. When I mentioned that I had blogged about the books, he asked the name of my blog. Even though he had heard of this site and had a background in left-of-center politics, he was content to keep the conversation focused on fantasy fiction with occasional considerations of literature (in general) and our own reading habits.
I treasure such conversations.
All that said, in a week when I would rather focus on my literary past-times, there are many items in the news worthy of consideration, particularly for a gay conservative blogger. [Read more…]