Sunday, June 24, 2007

I'd Buy That for a Dollar

This summer marks the 20th anniversary of Robocop! A violent movie, it's also biting and darkly hilarious in its socio-economic commentary. Can you imagine corporations seeping into daily life, into everything from sporting events to laying people off at will? Hmmm. In the 1987 original, plans for developing a new Delta City threatened "Old Detroit."

Happy birthday to both Peter Weller and Nancy Allen, the movie's co-stars.

Luckily, Old Detroit still endures. This weekend in mod weather I checked out Jazzin' On Jefferson. The setup was very similar to last weekend's International Arab American Festival in Dearborn. On Detroit's East Side, it was just as relaxed and low-key, only here with Jefferson Avenue closed off at Chalmers. Walking down Jefferson was way cool. The crowd was well-integrated, and there were no FBI and Army recruitment booths this time which was noticeable, since recruitment among African Americans is down something like thirty percent -- largely because of the gruesome Iraq War. Sometimes this is called "silent protest."

I had a beer in Marshall's Bar. It was dark and cozy, with jazz and pop on the juke (jazz playing when I first stepped inside), Christmas lights hanging permanently from the looks of them, working class vibe, comfortably integrated. The bartender's name was Flo -- it felt like I'd stepped back in time. One tipsy woman said to Flo about her tip, "I done the best I can, honey: I ain't being bad."When I emerged outside, someone said, "You got snap. Lookin' fresh." Cheers to "Old Detroit."

Today's Rune: Strength.

Birthdays: San Juan de la Cruz, Ambrose Bierce, Jack Dempsey “the Manassa Mauler,” Arseny Alexandrovich Tarkovsky, Ernesto Sabato, Julia Kristeva, Jeff Beck, Peter Weller, Mercedes Misty Lackey, Nancy Allen, Trisha Meili, Petra Němcová.



Johnny Yen said...

Sounds like a great night!

Robocop was one of the great political movies of the eighties. Beyond that, as one review I remember put it, it was genius having a villian named "Clarence." And character actor Ronny Cox was brilliant as always. Good call!

the walking man said...

Maybe one day i will share with you my vision of "old Detroit" but it runs over 80k words and I haven't gotten around to the total first revision yet.

But it has no robocops in it.