Tuesday, September 30, 2014

BOEING THERE.



Imagine Peter Sellers as a dim-witted captain in Boeing There, a movie wherein his character, Chauncey Pilot, unintentionally predicts the course of the economy through the application of flight terminology. Chauncey Pilot doesn’t anticipate that his choice phrases—“taxiing for takeoff”—“climbing into the sky”—“cruising at 500 miles per hour”—will embolden markets overnight. At the same time, this unassuming simpleton receives invitations to chuck out the first pitch at the ALCS, appear with Sully Sullenberger in a PSA concerning the dangers of incomplete astrophysics homework, and select the crucial ping pong ball for the nine-figure lotto drawing. A door opens. Another door opens. Hillary Clinton welcomes Chauncey Pilot into her dwellings for a private chat about who she, the presumptive nominee, should choose to occupy the two-spot on the ticket. (If not him.) An heiress played by Shirley MacLaine later invites the chaste captain to bed but Chauncey declares his preference to catch up on Lifetime reruns instead, forcing the seductress to pleasure herself. MacLaine’s turbulent body nevertheless captures Chauncey Pilot’s attention, reminding him of a chaotic Attitude Indicator on an airplane struggling to level itself during a crisis. He thinks about crisis, about the dark side of his profession: not only the possibility for accidents, but lost luggage, lengthy layovers, and fees for seat selection. In every ascent, he thinks, there follows a descent, and for every acceleration, he thinks, there follows a slowdown, and beyond that, even, a period of idleness. We, the viewers, realize that our way of life rides the cosine waves of Chauncey Pilot’s thinking. If he should he say “accident”—“lost”—“idleness”—“fees” then the economy might darken in correspondence with these terms. Fortunately for us, it’s Peter Sellers acting through these tribulations, what with his slightness of grins. If only the menacing machinery of the real gullible world would admit such a king.


2 comments:

Heather Fuller said...

Hillary's "dwellings" - yo. I imagine a lair of sorts, with an original Motherwell, a red phone perhaps. Whitewater chic. Cosine waves betray a strangelove indeed. Lesser panthers, beware the hypotenuse.

DAN / DANIEL GUTSTEIN said...

I too imagine a Hillary lair but kind of like full of antechambers. Want more living space -- well, then -- up the antechambers. So To Speak.

I'd like to envision a world where I could get more stuff via the kindness of co-signers (of loans, leases, etc.) In there would be a cosine wave.

Lesser panthiz (sic) just makes me smile. The hypotenuse of a panther is one that I can imagine, in the end. Body, tail -- and hypotenuse between 'em.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------BA