In the Belly of the Beast

Clearly, it’s the dizzying Zen mountaintop of transcendent American consumerism: the Apple Store on Black Friday. Even for the privilege of talking to clerk about a MacBook, I was told the wait was 35 minutes. In that moment I stared into the abyss….empty and forlorn….inadequate access to the Apple buying process. Then I rallied, briefly checked out the new iPhone X — which seemed needlessly complex — and walked back out into the mall, a vibrant minnow swimming in the invigorating waters of holiday commerce.  

 

Life in the Bay Area

Ah, even the coffee shops can be techie in San Francisco and surrounding areas. I was walking down the street in Berkeley and spotted Algorithm Coffee. Perhaps a dude or dudette is dreaming of a start up in there?  

 

Lion, Starring Dev Patel: A Feel-Good Drama


Lion, starring Dev Patel, scored mediocre reviews – a low wattage 69 out of 100 on Metacritic – but I was pleasantly surprised when I saw it. The story starts with a destitute young boy, Saroo, who gets lost and separated from his family in 1980s India, a world of dire poverty; a real dystopia. The child actor, Sunny Pawar, performs with sublime authenticity; those deep brown eyes looking out at the world, hustling through train stations and running from authorities, could move a heart of stone. As the story progresses, Dev Patel plays the grown up Saroo, convincingly and with a light touch. Saroo dreams of finally finding his family again after many years. The climatic scene offers a deep payoff, truly emotionally compelling. Lion is the rare drama that succeeds with hardly a touch of humor. A three-hanky movie, in a good way.