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My deepest, darkest secret

Do I have to write something every damned day? Is that the way a diary works?

OK, well, have I mentioned that I'm mad about movies? Especially old movies, not because the old movies were necessarily better (I'm sure they made as many stinkers as today), but because if they're showing an old movie in a theater, that means it's got to be something special. That's why I prefer old movies at the Roxie, over the latest Baldwin Brothers schlock at the multiplex.

Tonight at the Roxie, they began a series of pre-Code movies. Until about 1934, moviemakers made movies without any particular code of ethics to the stories they told. This resulted in lots of old biddies getting their buns in a twist. The Motion Picture Production Code (a/k/a Hayes Code) was Hollywood's response to political pressure demanding that movies be more 'moral' (not unlike today's Janet Reno too-much-violence crusade). Adopted voluntarily by the studios (but under threat of regulation otherwise, also like today), the Code required that the bad guys must be punished by the end of the film, and female characters must show virtue or pay the price in the plot. Essentially it mandated what's now called "traditional family values."

Pre-Code means movies made before movies became "entertainment for the whole family," and the Roxie's schedule of pre-Code talkies from the early '30s has me intrigued.

I shouldn't have gone tonight, though. Weary from a week of drudge work and not sleeping well the past few nights, even James Cagney had a hard time holding my attention in Lady Killer. Then drowsiness defeated me, and I came home instead of seeing the second feature, Fog Over Frisco. That's a disappointment, because Fog is supposed to be a classic.

I'll try again tomorrow, but it'll be different pre-Code movies. The Roxie rarely shows the same movies two nights in a row.

♦ ♦ ♦

A note to you, dear reader of this zine: Are you disappointed that I'm writing about movies instead of "Dear diary, here's my deepest, darkest secret"? Well, be disappointed all you like — I already have your three dollars, bwa ha ha!

Seriously, though, my deepest, darkest secret is that aren't many deep, dark secrets in my life. In this diary, you'll find no hang-gliding, no night clubs, and no trips to Paris or Vienna. Tonight I'm having some Vienna sausages, though.

  From Pathetic Life #1
Friday, June 3, 1994

This is an entry retyped from an on-paper zine I wrote many years ago, called Pathetic Life. The opinions stated were my opinions then, but might not be my opinions now. Also, I said and did some disgusting things, so parental guidance is advised.

 

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