It's probably a good thing that I'm not too worried about my personal space. There's a lot of
touchy-feely people out there, which is fine by me. The biggest problem is coming up with some
sort of snappy comment in return. The other day, I was in a mall and someone grabbed one of my upper
arms and said, "do you have a license for these things?" What do you say to something like that?
I just said, "yes, I do," which is still the closest thing to a clever response that I've been able to
The weirdest time, however, has to be when I was on a street outside a warehouse we were filming
in and a bunch of people had gathered to find out what was going on. We'd put up all the usual
warning signs in the neighborhood a few days beforehand, but even so, shotgun blasts and
explosions still arouse some people's curiosity.
Anyway, this one woman who was there kept hitting
me on the chest, insisting "that isn't real!" Which, you have to admit, is pretty weird. Sure, there are
a lot of special effects and things that aren't real that get used in the movie industry, but none of my
body parts fall into that category. I won't guarantee that none of my body parts ever have special
effects, but so far none of these have been captured on film.
But I still have to work on those snappy comebacks. That and come up with something clever to do the
next time some random person walking by turns and asks me, out of the blue, to demonstrate some
"amazing kung-fu moves." This time I just talked briefly about the difference between fighting for film
and fighting for real. I know Mark would have known what to do, but what do you do, anyway, when
someone's just standing there? Seems like that's a scenario I've never had to deal with: blocking an
opponent's strike, going to a joint lock, then to another hit-kick sequence is everyday stuff, but what
do you do with someone who's just standing there expecting a demonstration? Bonk 'em on the head?
So this could be one way to defend yourself against a martial artist: just stand there and smile expectantly
and hope they're confused enough that they can't think of anything suitably devastating to do.
Actually, don't try that. Or, if you do, don't blame me if it doesn't work.
As you can probably tell, I'm not too worried about my cyberspace boundaries either. Obviously, there's
far more about me that I've put up on the web than anyone would actually want to know. Some of it
even goes wandering and takes up a life of its own. The
goldfish cracker background has
found its way onto the backgrounds of countless numbers of webpages and, starting New Year's Eve,
what seems like half of the xanga, livejournal, and myspace pages out there are using either one of my fireworks
pictures or the festive shot of Stanley, that handsome rodent pictured at bottom right. There are even
some pictures of me that have packed up and found other homes on the net, including a livejournal
page I ran into recently where the background was entirely pictures of me. I should feel flattered that
the author picked that motif over my headcheese
As much as they get maligned sometimes, I think livejournals and the like are some of the most remarkable
developments of the web and something that may slowly and subtly change how people relate. At any
moment, you might wonder about a friend you hadn't seen in years and, with a quick web search and a bit
of luck, peek in through a window onto their life and catch up on what they've been up to. On the one hand,
it could lead to people getting back in touch when otherwise they would have never gotten any further
than just wondering...and on the other hand, they might just forget to: after catching up on what their
old friend has been up to by reading his or her journal, picking up the phone might simply seem redundant.
It used to be that when you brought someone up-to-date with what's going on in your life, you knew who
you were talking to. Now you've got no idea.