Obvious things about a creative work you realize after the millionth time (OPEN SPOILERS POSSIBLE)

The Star Trek Discovery tv show featured CGI of “programmable matter controls”:


but it was all lifted from an old MIT bits and atoms tech demo:

Added Peter, Paul, and Mary’s Leaving on a Jet Plane to the rotation. Nice song, pleasant melody, but I can’t help but imagine this as a voice mail…

‘Hey. I’m getting on this plane and couldn’t leave without calling…looks like it went directly to voice mail. Anyway… I am SO sorry about everything. Look, honey, all those other people… they meant nothing. Really. Nothing. Look, when I come back… if you can promise to not have a revenge fuck while I’m gone, I’ll get married like you wanted! We’ll get married! Like we wanted! Ok? Tell me you’ll wait for me! Tell me! Shit. I’ll call when I land, but still have yet to book my return so I don’t know when I’ll be back. Love you, baby. Really. And I’m so sorry.’

For that matter, consider the song “Gentle on My Mind”, which was written and first sung by John Hartford although the famous version is by Glenn Campbell. It’s about a guy who tells a woman who he regularly sleeps with that he will always will come back to her after sleeping with a few other woman in the interim. The other womrn may cry when he leaves them, but so what? There’s a pretense that the song is about a hobo who has spent his life traveling around the country hitching rides on trains, but if the song actually was meant to be just for such men, just how popular would it be? It’s really about guys who think they’re like hoboes even though they have steady jobs and own a house, but they like to pretend that they are as free as a hobo and thus their occasional girlfriends can’t complain about his cheating on them.

AAAAAhhhhh!!! Glen Campbell.

So I’ve been watching the show Special on Netflix. The main character is a writer for a website called Egg Woke. I thought that seemed like a strange name for a blog, but whatever. I was several episodes into season 2 before I realized “Egg Woke” sounds like “egg yolk”. :man_facepalming:

There’s a James Thurber cartoon that shows a woman on the telephone, with the caption, “Well, if I called the wrong number, why did you answer the phone?”

But I’d only heard the caption as a joke in the stage presentation, “Thurber Carnival”. For some reason I thought it was an odd situation in which the person who answered was somehow someone she knew, leaving us to ponder the mystery of what was going on. Maybe a married man or woman she knew having an affair?

I finally saw the cartoon many years later (which did not change my impression). Note the old-style phone. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/37788084359507850/

It was many more years later I finally realized the totally obvious: the woman didn’t understand that the person who answered couldn’t know it was a wrong number until he/she picked up the phone.

Modern technology spoiling a good joke.

Rewatching Casablanca, I was surprised by a couple of lines that I didn’t remember.

The first: I love this one and will try to remember to use it in real life. A customer complains to a waiter after witnessing a suspicious-looking win at the roulette wheel:

Customer: Say, you sure this place is honest?
Waiter: Honest? As honest as the day is long!

If you don’t get it, the implication is (or may be) that it’s honest only half the time.

The second: Nothing funny or cute about this one. When Victor and Ilsa first enter Rick’s Cafe, she recognizes Sam from Paris and asks about him:

Ilsa: Captain, the boy who’s playing the piano… Somewhere I’ve seen him.

I’m sure no ill will was behind the use of “boy,” especially in a film like Casablanca. It’s still hard to hear, though.

Someone once called me “sport” and it really pissed me off (you had to be there).

I don’t think that’s correct; “…as the day is long” means something is true to the utmost degree. I think the waiter’s use of that phrase was meant to be hyperbole, but I don’t know that any double meaning was intended.

Sam calls Rick “Boss”, Rick and Ilsa call Sam “Sam”, and Sam calls Ilsa “Miss Ilsa”. Rick’s attitude varies between treating Sam as a friend and an employee. There’s only that one point at which someone calls Sam “the boy”. For the time, it wasn’t much more racist or sexist than usual. This essay (which I don’t necessarily agree with all of) talks about other questionable aspects of Casablanca. You have to accept Rick and Renault’s actions as being sufficient at the end to morally balance their previous ones:

Yes, I’m aware of the meaning. It may have been unintentional and, of course, it may be my imagination. But it’s not much of a stretch, especially considering the rest of the film.

I’ve watched The Wire. And I’ve watched Boardwalk Empire. And yet somehow I managed to not realize Omar Little and Chalky White were played by the same actor until today, when the news of his death came out.

I would agree with @Robot_Arm. The intended humor is not that the place is honest half the time, but rather why would you ask the employee of a crooked establishment if the establishment is honest? I mean, you could potentially run across the fellow Diogenes was searching for, but your odds would be better outside with a lamp.

And of course, the place is not honest. The line occurs just after Rick has cheated (or, had his croupier cheat) in order to give the young Hungarian couple enough money to buy an exit visa from Renault. Carl is swearing that the casino is honest even though he, and we, know it isn’t.

By the way, I’m shocked–SHOCKED!–to find gambling going on in here.

It’s been a while since I saw Casablanca but I thought the joke was that they were only open at night.

I just realized that the movie title The Departed comes (partially) from the line on the card that Costello leaves at Costigan’s mother’s funeral; "Heaven helps the faithful Departed”. I don’ know how I missed that. I guess the first time I was concentrating on Costello’s name and then any time I’ve watched it since, I just don’t look that closely.

I just noticed that God Save the Queen is in 3/4 time.

Also the Star Spangled Banner

I just realized (and by “realized” I mean I looked at the credits) that the actor who plays the UPS delivery guy in Legally Blonde in not Bryan Cranston but actually a gentleman named Bruce Thomas.

I was pre-teen when the Perry Mason television show was on, and was a big fan, even though I didn’t always understand everything that was going on. I vividly remember many of the courtroom scenes. And I remember gleaning the information that the word “defendant” obviously meant “a person who is innocent but who is unfairly accused of a crime.”