Intro for October 23, 2012
I gave a TED Talk on Sunday. It was a huge honour. Not only to have the opportunity to speak (The Sociology of Gossip was the title of my speech) but for the chance to hang out with so many really, really interesting people -- including Doug Schmitt who specialises in meteor law. Yes. Meteor Law. And he’s even consulted at the Vatican about Meteor Law. Because, like, if a meteor lands in your back yard, who owns it? You? Your country? The space program? Anyway, towards the end of his remarks, Doug talked about Michael Bay’s Armageddon and how it’s impossible to land a rocket on an asteroid and plant a nuclear bomb on it to blow it apart. Obviously. But some of the ideas they’re actually proposing, for real, all these space scientists, are even crazier... and TOTALLY AWESOME.
Essentially, and I’m putting this in my own degenerate language so please know Doug made it sound a lot smarter, an asteroid is just a cloud of dirt and space dust and whatever that doesn’t actually harden until it reaches the earth’s atmosphere. Which is why - one reason - you can’t dock your rocket onto it and start drilling. But what you can do - in theory - is fly your rocket up next to the asteroid and take out your graffiti gun. You spray one side of the asteroid with some kind of white powder substance, leaving the other side of the asteroid dark, and that light discrepancy will interact with the sun somehow and throw the asteroid’s temperature into an imbalance and the resulting temperature instability will either make it go off course away from the earth or, maybe, explode.
Can you imagine? It might all come down to spray paint one day!
We are coming up on the 15 year anniversary of Armageddon. (Jesus that was fast.) In other words, by Hollywood standards, it’s due for remake. Please, please Hollywood, remake it with the spray paint. Like instead of being an oil driller, Bruce Willis’s character would be a Graffiti Artist, the best in the world. But they have to keep Ben Affleck’s line:
Harry, this is my job, you can’t do this. I love you!
Fine, OK. I admit it, I cried! My dad is bald too!
From that to the Oscars -- check out Ben being all Mr Hollywood at the Hollywood Film Awards last night where Argo was honoured. There is no way Argo isn’t getting multiple nominations now, not with Argo only losing 15% of its opening weekend gross during week 2 on very, very strong word of mouth. And not the way the Afflecks have been campaigning either. It’s an irresistible combination - an industry golden boy who “fought” his way back up (love how he’s embellished his own recent history, don’t you?) and his perfect family that supported him along the way. Sh-t, when you put it that way, even I want to vote for him.
I’ll let you know when Doug Schmitt’s TED Talk will be posted online. And mine too!
Yours in gossip,