вторник, 13 октомври 2009 г.

Short Story

Snake in Disguise


Nick, the product of a family of lawyers, lived and studied in the capital city of Bulgaria. Having the privilege to study in a private school, surrounded by money and sophisticated people, he managed to grow bored with everything the world had to offer him pretty quickly. School was not of any great interest to him since he had no real motivation to succeed. He always knew that even if he failed his parents would just take care of things. The one thing he really valued was his friends: Jeremy and Peter. He spent every afternoon with them, doing all those things young teenagers do.
In his second year of High School, he flunked some subjects, more precisely mathematics and American literature, which he thought were of no importance and was forced to stay and study during the summer if he wanted to graduate. Consequently, his parents started putting too much pressure on him for bringing this shame to them, that their only son was a failure. Nick did not really care about what his parents had to say about the situation but went to school anyway. He was not alone though, he was grouped with a senior who flunked half his subjects also. This particular guy - Kevin, they called him Tooth because when he was in eighth grade, some guy accidentally tripped him in the school cafeteria and Kevin punched out all his teeth, he was bad news. There were rumors that he had been dealing drugs in school for a couple of months now.
After a couple of days, Nick heard that Jeremy and Peter were going to the seaside with a couple of girls for who knew how long. At first he did not care but when he finished summer school the next day and had nowhere to go, he felt abandoned. On the way home, he saw Kevin smoking on the bus station.
- Hey, Kevin.
- What's going on, man? - Casually asked Kevin and exhaled the cigarette smoke.
- Not much, wondering what to do. - replied Nick.
He glared with reluctance at Kevin and asked if he could bum a cigarette.
- It was my last one, want to smoke up instead? - proposed Kevin.
Nick was not really sure what Kevin meant but agreed anyways. They were on their way to Kevin's apartment which was not really far when he started realizing what they were about to do.
- Drugs? Really? - Nick asked with a trembling voice.
- What drugs? It's just pot, that’s not a drug. People don’t understand, relax.
They did what they went there to do and Kevin convinced Nick to stay the night in his apartment. On the next day, instead of going to summer school, they went to see Kevin's friends and saw them smoking. One of the guys there passed a cigarette with marijuana to Nick and he picked it up with great caution. He thought to himself: Nothing happened yesterday, what can happen now, and inhaled. He felt the same strange way he felt the day before and liked it.
Kevin and Nick grew close and skipped a whole week of school together, and experimented with different types of drugs each day. Jeremy and Peter had been back for a couple of hours from their vacation and called Nick. Nick got scared, he knew that they would not accept what he did the past week with Kevin and kept his mouth shut. They decided to go to the movies together. Jeremy and Peter waited for Nick at the city mall; they had brought their girlfriends with them. When Nick came, he saw them with their new girlfriends from the distance and felt unsecure. He decided not to go with them and sent a text message to Peter saying he got held after school. Nick called his "study buddy" and took a cab to meet him. Kevin said that they had to go and pick up something from a friend.
An hour later, he arrived in one of the shady neighborhoods of the city. Getting out of the cab, he saw Kevin and a couple of tall, large guys standing on the curb. It seemed like they were waiting for him.
- Hey, there. - Nick reluctantly saluted.
- Hello there, boy. Let's go - said the deep voiced gorilla.
Nick glanced at Kevin and noticed that his eye and jaw were swollen.
-Kev, what happened to you? - He asked.
The deep voiced gorilla slapped Nick across the face and told him to keep his mouth shut. They started walking toward Kevin's car. Kevin opened the trunk and threw a suitcase over to his so called friends. At that same moment, a police car stopped right behind them. Kevin quickly jumped in the driver's seat and his friends started running, leaving the suitcase on the ground. Nick tried to get into the car but he tripped. Kevin took off. The blood from Nick’s body quickly rushed into his head and prevented him from realizing the gravity of the situation. The policeman quickly found out that something was going on and ran toward the spot where the car was moments ago. He asked him what had happened but Nick did not say anything. That same instant, he glanced at the suitcase that was next to him. The policeman opened it and grinned. It was full with marijuana.
Nick was sentenced to accomplice in drug distribution, and ultimately got expelled from school due to obvious reasons. When Kevin was interrogated by the police, he stated that he never interacted with his classmate Nick before. Kevin's friends were nowhere to be found. Being behind bars, the young sophisticated boy from the private school had to cope with problems that were beyond his abilities. Unwilling to look at his parents and friends in the eyes, to explain what he had gotten himself into, he felt more alone than ever. Having all the time in the world, Nick contemplated his inevitable visitations in the unwelcoming atmosphere of his prison cell, being interrupted only by the distant but lucid laughter of the guards.

вторник, 6 октомври 2009 г.

Violence in Movies

It would not be an exaggeration to say that most of movie production lately depends entirely on the attractive force of movement. The problem is that dynamics and tension are not promoted by dramaturgy but from a mix of difficult situations and primitive arguments. Instead of reasonable human beings, on the screen appear gorillas whose brutal and aggressive logic inspire dark and semiconscious associations such as the ugly and sick.
The latter cut their foes’ necks with the ease that they light a cigarette with. Their callousness promotes violence like a model for behavior, instead of disgust and despise. It is obvious that the success of those movies is greatly supported by professional cruelness. By crowding the scenes with neurotically-worrying and sexually-cruel images producers and directors put a painful psychological burden on the viewer.
It is like all movie creators have decided to turn their backs on the universal necessity – art to be art. This does not mean that it should promote cheap and clichéd models of behavior. Art is a world of visions that deserve to be turned into reality. The stubborn attempts of people to reach into the core of their destiny while facing the unknown, their desire to achieve harmony and find the meaning of life have always been a goal of real art.
At the same time, the contemporary hero from the screen is too busy punching someone to take a peek into his own soul. Directors create a world of anarchy, chaos and disgust is created, a world in which the “others” are the enemies by definition – that is not real art. The power and extent of real art gives birth to ideas and feelings, recreates perfect moments - it does not create monsters.