Hopelessly Fighting The Devil Futility

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If you feel lately like an incredible shrinking man or woman, here’s a mix for you. May it be the antidote for your poor mood. 

Taking Time- Arthur Russell

Real Good Time Together- Lou Reed

Planet Health- Chairlift

Standing In Your Line- Telepathe

Figure 8- Blossom Dearie

Jamie- Hedge & Donna

If You Can’t Learn From My Mistakes- Moby Grape

Joy In Repetition- Prince

Ghost Song- Jim Morrison

Joe Buck Rides Again- John Barry, Midnight Cowboy OST

Time Love Hope Life- Peter Sarstedt

Untitled- The Cure

Nite Life- Willie Nelson

Everybody Wants To Live- Brian Wilson

Tin Man- America

Time Of The Last Persecution- Bill Fay

Incredible Shrinking Mix

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The first movie I remember seeing in the movie theater was The Incredible Shrinking Woman with Lily Tomlin and Charles Grodin, both of whom I think are so underrated. Grodin always plays such a great cad.

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My brother and I would race by foot across Interstate 10  to get to the movie complex at The Lake Forest Plaza Mall, an already-dying mall which was finally picked off by Hurricane Katrina.  The fascinating website deadmalls.com discusses The Plaza and many other closed malls across America.

Here’s the beginning of The Incredible Shrinking Woman, which has a great titles sequence. It’s also one of Joel Schumacher’s first films. Written by Tomlin’s long-time partner Jane Wagner, the film is an attack on American consumerism. Lily Tomlin’s character shrinks due to “multiple chemical sensitivity disorder” when she is exposed to a heady mixture of everyday household chemicals and products. 

The Incredible Shrinking Woman is less gloomy than it’s predecessor, Jack Arnold’s The Incredible Shrinking Man. Lily Tomlin finds the antidote which will make her full-grown again. Not so for the shrinking man, who after struggling against a predatory spider shrinks into nothingness while delivering this existential voiceover:

I was continuing to shrink, to become… what? The infinitesimal? What was I? Still a human being? Or was I the man of the future? If there were other bursts of radiation, other clouds drifting across seas and continents, would other beings follow me into this vast new world? So close – the infinitesimal and the infinite. But suddenly, I knew they were really the two ends of the same concept. The unbelievably small and the unbelievably vast eventually meet – like the closing of a gigantic circle. I looked up, as if somehow I would grasp the heavens. The universe, worlds beyond number, God’s silver tapestry spread across the night. And in that moment, I knew the answer to the riddle of the infinite. I had thought in terms of man’s own limited dimension. I had presumed upon nature. That existence begins and ends in man’s conception, not nature’s. And I felt my body dwindling, melting, becoming nothing. My fears melted away. And in their place came acceptance. All this vast majesty of creation, it had to mean something. And then I meant something, too. Yes, smaller than the smallest, I meant something, too. To God, there is no zero. I still exist! 

Truly an amazing ending:

shrinking

To God, there is no zero.

Enjoy the mix.

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2 responses to “Hopelessly Fighting The Devil Futility

  1. So, man, you are like the new lover-to-be, making tapes for your girl, like a Nick Hornby character. I have to go see who you are.

  2. I miss mixtapes. All my tape decks are busted.

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