Movie Time

E369BC62-3B7C-41AE-B3DF-FD96F3C24BCBDonald Trump says that he is “hearing more and more people say the level of violence on video games is really shaping young people’s thoughts. And you go one further step and that’s the movies.”

Yes, with respect to movies and video games, Trump is proposing something truly innovative. “Maybe they have to put a ratings system for that,” he suggested.

And just as Trump said last year that “nobody knew that health care could be so complicated,” he now apparently believes that nobody before him thought that movies and video games should have age-based ratings.

Has Donald Trump ever gone to see a movie? Does he not realize that there has long been an age-ratings system for movies that depict violence? That system from the Motion Picture Association of America was implemented in the Sixties. It rates movies based upon violence, sexual content, and language, and it’s recognizable to almost everyone who lives in the country. Who doesn’t know the difference between a G-rated movie and an R-rated movie?

A similar ratings system devised by the Entertainment Software Rating Board has also been implemented and is widely adopted for video games, with T-rated and M-rated games restricted to people 13 or older and 17 or older, respectively.

But best of all, Trump’s movie and video game ratings system will take all the pressure off the NRA, since what’s really behind mass shootings is video game and movie violence, not guns.

The President of the United States is a fucking moron.

Sorry that this is my second politically oriented post of the day, but there’s so much crazy shit going on that it’s hard not to comment on it.

#writephoto — Perspective

3FB8307E-BA25-4FB4-8A8D-34805693822D“It’s beautiful, isn’t it?” Carolyn asked her friend, Ann, after handing her the photograph. “I’m going to have it mounted and framed and hang it in my living room.”

Ann stared at the picture for a moment and then handed it back to Carolyn. “It’s okay, I guess,” Ann said.

Carolyn was shocked and disappointed by her friend’s reaction. “Seriously?” she said. “It’s just okay?”

“Well, I guess it’s got some artistic qualities about it in an avant-garde sort of way,” Ann said. “But I’m not sure I see the same beauty in it that you do.”

“Oh my God,” Carolyn said indignantly. “How can you look at that photo and not see the beauty in it? It’s a goddam work of art.”

Ann grabbed the picture out of Carolyn’s hand and looked at it again. “Okay, sure, I can see the artistry,” she said. “But what made you take a picture of the setting sun being reflected on the surface of a slushy road?”

Carolyn took the picture back from Ann and looked at it again. “Oh for crissake, Ann,” Carolyn said. “You’re holding it upside down.”

975A6C51-D39A-477E-A545-1CC800B02EB5“Oh,” said Ann. “It’s a sunset over the lake. My bad.”

Written for today’s Thursday Photo Prompt from Sue Vincent. And, yes, Sue, it is a beautiful photograph when you look at it from the the right perspective. 😃

Republican Dicks

A72027CC-961A-41FE-82D0-BCA257DB7A2ADid you know that the internet is exposing children to pornography at an alarming rate? Apparently that’s what state legislators in Florida know. They believe that pornography on the internet leads to low self-esteem and deviant sexual behavior. It also contributes to mental and physical illness, difficulty with relationships, and unhealthy brain development.

And so on Tuesday, the Republican-controlled state legislature in Tallahassee, Florida approved a measure declaring pornography to be a public health risk.

The porn resolution was introduced just after the Florida House voted 71-36 against a motion to open debate on a military-style assault weapons ban.

And, of course, this refusal to even debate such a ban happened just five days after 17 people — students and teachers — were tragically gunned down at a Florida high school by a lone shooter with an AR-15 semiautomatic assault rifle.

But I guess this is par for the course in a state that is shaped like a penis by the state’s limp dick Republicans who are bought and owned by the big, hard guns of the NRA.

The Fire Sleuth

SleuthFranklin, the head of the fire investigation unit, and his two interns walked into what remained of the structure. “What’s the first step we should take to assay the situation and identity the source?” he asked the two men.

The men looked at one another and then back at Franklin. “Sir, I’m sorry, but did you mean to say ‘assess the situation’?” one of them asked.

“Assess, appraise, evaluate, check out, size up, investigate,” Franklin said. “When you assay a situation, you look at all the elements that created the problem in order to come up with a solution. You conduct an examination, evaluate what you see, and make a determination.”

The other intern looked at his buddy and then back at Franklin. “Of course, sir,” he said. “I’d just never heard that word ‘assay’ before.”

“Assay is a word that is most commonly used for the testing of a metal or ore to determine its ingredients and quality,” Franklin explained. “As fire investigators, our job is to identify and collect evidence relating to fires and make determinations as to their causes, and especially to assess whether or not they were deliberately set. So that includes carefully examining chemical, electrical, and structural clues.”

Franklin looked at his two interns, shook his head, and said, “So let’s start assaying, gentlemen.”

I have to admit that when I saw today’s one-word prompt, “assay,” I didn’t know what it meant. I Googled it to learn that it’s often associated with metallurgy and pharmacology to test a substance to find out what chemicals it contains. And that’s when the idea of using a fire investigator as a way to write a flash fiction story built around the word “ assay.”

Photo Challenge — Anonymous Faces in the Crowd

788C099C-8856-483F-87A1-54A10A14EF00This was an interesting Photo Challenge. We are asked to “create an image that represents being ‘a face in the crowd.’” We are instructed to explore silhouettes, shadows, orientation, and other ways to mask our subjects. “Without facial expression, can you tell how someone is feeling?” the prompt asks. “Without color, does your impression of that person change?”

I don’t know if the photo at the top of this post is cheating or not. It has a face — quite a few, in fact — and there’s a crowd of people. Check, check. I used post-processing to turn the original color photo to black and white. So it’s without color. Check.

But I didn’t use silhouettes, shadows, or orientation to mask my subjects. I used Prisma, a post-processing photo app on my iPhone that “transforms photographs into works of art.” And in that way, I “masked” the faces of my subjects.

As to how the people in the photo are felling, well, they’re all at an anti-Trump rally, so no amount of masking can hide the anger and frustration that everyone there was feeling.