Friday, March 25, 2011

Stranger than Fiction

     March 1st was one of those days that didn't end the way I had expected it to:  I waltzed into the office, and got asked to meet with my boss, and a nice lady from Human Resources.  They laid off over a third of my department--including yours truly, the Radioactive Birdwatcher.

     No moss has grown under my feet, over the last 25 days.  Twenty five days?  Hell; 25 minutes after I was informed that I'm history, I was on the phone with somebody who expressed great interest in my unique combination of jobs skills.  And that's for the job that's my "number two" choice.  I hate to say "number two" because, truth be told, the job that I only applied for after getting laid off is a job that I would thoroughly love to have.  Through a bizarre series of coinkydinks, I was already in the application process for a job at another research institution when--to my complete surprise--USC laid me off.  Either way, if neither one of those prospective employers snatches me up, there's always Plan B: scanning patients full time.

     Scanning patients is Plan B?  Wow, in this economy my Plan B is better than most other guys' Plan A.  So, my life is still going better than Harold Crick's, the protagonist in the Netflix movie that has been collecting dust on my bookshelf since--you guessed it--March 1st.  Will Ferrell plays Harold Crick in Stranger than Fiction.

     I love this movie. 
     If you are a writer, or (God help you) live with a writer, you will love this movie.  It's literary, but not in a pretentious, artsy-fartsy way.  If you expect Will Ferrell to run around naked, shouting obscenities, you will be profoundly disappointed. As a matter of fact, there isn't a single 4 letter word in the whole movie.  This is the most cerebral American comedy I've seen in forever.  Ferrell restrains himself, playing Crick with sublety and understatement.

     I don't want to say too much about the plot, for fear of ruining it for prospective viewers.  Instead, I'm going to click on "Publish Post", and get back to what I've been doing a lot of these last 3 weeks:  obtaining on-line Continuing Education credits in Nuclear Medicine, so that the State of California will renew my nuclear license...

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