Forty Years Later…

I still remember an ad for “Alien” that told us: “In space, no one can hear you scream.”  Yes, it was 1979 when we first met the creature that attached itself to someone and, later, burst out of their body to kill the crew of a space ship.  And it was quite a crew/cast: Tom Skerritt, Harry Dean Stanton, Yaphet Kotto, Ian Holm, John Hurt, Veronica Cartwright, and the lone survivor, Sigourney Weaver (see below).  She has had quite a career, in more “Alien” films, plus other fine performances.  But, as you remember, the story came down to the creature versus Sigourney –a female hero!! In years previous, it would have been John Wayne versus the monster.  Ms. Weaver showed us another hero is possible.


Do you remember how the film closed?  Ripley: “Final report of the commercial starship Nostromo, third officer reporting. The other members of the crew –Kane, Lambert, Parker, Brett, Ash, and Captain Dallas –are dead.  Cargo and ship destroyed.  I should reach the frontier in about six weeks.  With a little luck, the network will pick me up.  This is Ripley, the last survivor of the Nostromo, signing off.”  That’s how victory sounded.

And, 35 years later, another woman, Emily Blunt (see below) taught Tom Cruise how to defeat aliens who invaded Earth in the film “Edge of Tomorrow.”  And when Tom hesitated to continue using step 2 of the 3 step process that could bring victory (ie, “Live, Die, Repeat”), Ms. Blunt helped him with a single round. Somewhere, Ms. Weaver was smiling. Watch both films when and where you can.







About rcarmean

Two things... First, why have I decided to establish this blog? I like to put essays together. I research an idea or topic looking for information, statistics, stories, quotes, pictures, etc. I enjoy the process and seeing a finished product. I’m told that as I get older, new activities can help maintain energy and keep my brain alert. In other words, I am not doing this for money or fame. Second, regarding the gentleman in the collage of pictures's not me. Those are photos of Christy Mathewson. Why him? When I was young, my primary activity was being sick. It took up much of my time. Eczema (a case so bad I was written up in a medical journal showing doctors what their patients COULD look like), asthma, and allergies. You know allergies: don’t eat this, don’t wear that, and, for Heaven’s sake, don’t touch any of these things (eg, dogs, cats, horses --I only saw horses in cowboy movies and TV shows, dust, swimming pools, my brother --OK, that’s an exaggeration, Rick was a fine brother). In my spare time between doctors' appointments, pills, and ointments, baseball kept me sane. In the 1940s and 1950s, when I grew up, pro footballI and basketball had not yet become extremely popular. Baseball truly was “the national pastime.” I listened to games on the radio (remember it? TV without the picture). I read magazines, books, and newspaper accounts of games. I collected baseball cards. I learned about the game’s history, as well as present. The same with its stars. One man stood out: Christy Mathewson. He was a great pitcher for the New York Giants in the early 20th century. But there was much more to him. At a time when professional athletes made little money (yes, there was such a time) and ball players were considered on the same level as actors, artists, and prostitutes, Mathewson stood out. One of his nicknames was: “The Christian Gentleman.” Most men is baseball drank, smoked, cursed, and fought —with other players, umpires, and fans. The fights were physical, not just verbal. Mathewson did none of these things. But he earned the respect of other players who did them all. Even Ty Cobb and John McGraw. There’s more. He was a college graduate (Bucknell University) when most men were lucky to have a high school diploma. He played other sports, including pro football which you wouldn’t recognize. He was handsome. He played in New York City, then as now, the largest city in the country. Excellence and popularity there meant fame and money. He dressed well. Today, his commercials would rival LeBron’s. And, finally, a hero’s life must have tragedy. After his playing career ended, WWI arrived. He suffered from influenza and was exposed to mustard gas. Chemical warfare. His lungs were damaged and he required treatment for the rest of his life. (Like my Grandfather who also fought in The Great War.) He died in 1925. He was 45 years old. I have his picture here because you need to know more about him than me. He was what an athlete could be. Players like him and their accomplishments got me through a sickly, painful childhood and can still sustain me in difficult times. *****
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