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Match Play is a golf/suspense novel. Dust of Autumn is a bloody one set in upstate New York. Prairie View is set in South Dakota, with a final scene atop Rattlesnake Butte. Life in the Arbor is a children's book about Rollie Rabbit and his friends (on about a fourth grade level). The Black Widow involves an elaborate extortion scheme. Doggy-Dog World is my memoir. And ES3 is a description of my method for examining English sentence structure.
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My newest novel, Happy Valley, can be found here.

Tuesday, June 23

Inside Out

We saw Inside Out yesterday, the new Pixar film out of the Disney Studios. We were the only adults in attendance without one or more children. In fact, there was a family in front of us—mother, father, grandmother, and seven kids. And everyone had popcorn, large soda, and box of candy. The total bill must have been somewhere north of $100, maybe even quite a bit north.

We even got to see a Disney short before the movie began, a strange little musical called “Lava.” In my youth, every movie was preceded by one or two or even three short attractions. We always clapped when we got a “Tom and Jerry.”
We always hooted when we got a Travelogue. In an age before televised news, we all sat patiently through the News of the Day. We also had some Three Stooges and a black & white called “Behind the Eight Ball” with Joe McDoakes. Such odd little fillers before the films. That’s where all kids first got to see not only Tom and Jerry, but also Donald Duck,
Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd,
Popeye the Sailor Man, Superman, Mr. Magoo, Casper the Friendly Ghost, Tweetie Bird, and many more characters from our youths. And then, finally we got to see the movie.

Okay, back to “Lava.” It was a cute little story about a South Pacific volcano who wants to find someone to “lava.” He sings, “I have a dream I hope will come true, that you’re here with me and I’m here with you. I wish that the earth and the sky up above will send me someone to lava.” And, as with nearly all Disney shorts, he gets his wish when a lovely female volcano bursts through the sea nearby.

I’m not sure what to say about Inside Out. We both enjoyed it a lot, especially in the characters of Joy (Amy Poehler) and Sorrow (Phyllis Smith) and the little girl Riley. What struck both of us, though, was how so much of the movie would have been way beyond the understanding of most children. Cute though it was, how many kids would pick up on the "train of thought" riding around in Riley's brain? Or the concept of core memories? Or the chasm of forgetfulness into which we dump useless information? The whole premise based on emotions and memories would have been too difficult for children. At least all the ones I know. But then, today’s children were my generation’s teenagers. I was moved by the idea that as we grow older, most of the joyful memories we have of childhood become tinged with sadness when we first realize that those happy days are gone forever. Good flick. Go see it even if you’re the only adult there.

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