Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

What movie do you feel has best represented the darkest parts of your past?

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

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“Hustlers”, An All-Too-Real Film About How Far One May Go For Worldly Gain, Even When It May Hurt Another…

Sometimes there are movies I watch, such as the recent release of “Hustlers” starring Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu, that hits home all too well of the many dark days I once lived where I didn’t care whether I hurt others or not, so long as I got “mine”.

“Hustlers” is actually a phenomenally realistic movie that portrays the dark side that exists in each and every one of us, the side that stems from the ego that constantly looks for how to get ahead in life, even if it means stepping on another’s toes, including those we care about. That old saying of “hurt people hurt people” is so apropos to this film. Based upon a true story, “Hustlers’ is about a young woman named Destiny (played by Wu) who becomes willing to do just about anything to become something more in life. Finding very little financial success as an exotic dancer, she looks to a fellow dancer named Ramona (played by Lopez) who makes it look so easy to make money in their line of work. It doesn’t take long for Destiny to learn the tricks of the trade and follow in Ramona’s footsteps, preying on the clients as if they were like sheep where they were the wolves. But, when the financial market takes a major downturn and causes their line of work to really suffer, Romana eventually comes up with a get-rich scheme and draws Destiny even deeper into behaviors that cross the line of morals and then some. How far will Destiny and Ramona go to get ahead in life? Just how far will they fall into the darkness that comes when money becomes the sole source of one’s happiness? “Hustlers” tells the true story of two people who become willing to sell their souls, all for the sake of seeking worldly riches that ultimately can never bring about the happiness they seek.

I was truly blown away by this movie and feel it’s Lopez’s best work yet. As for Wu, she continues to show she’s well on her way to stardom as an actress between her role in “Crazy Rich Asians” and now this. Both strongly reminded me through this film of how far I became willing to travel down the rabbit hole into behaviors that today I find myself so disgusted by. The number of people I used to get what I wanted in life by stepping on their toes. The amount of times I gave my body away for things I thought would make my life better. The pain I caused both myself and others along the way was immeasurable. Watching Destiny and Ramona treat men as if they were nothing more than expendable objects was almost too painful to sit through, not because the movie itself was done in poor taste, but rather because of how well it portrayed my own old behaviors when I preyed on older attractive men without any regard to their feelings. Sometimes I think the amount of agony I’ve gone through over the past nine years is some sort of a punishment or a release process from all the pain I caused those I once took advantage of. I’m not proud of how I used to live my life and have asked God many times over to forgive me for all the hurt and suffering I caused plenty when my ego ruled my existence and fleshly gains were the sole source of my happiness.

“Hustler’s” is most definitely a superb film that showed me a perfect reflection into my past to a time when I didn’t care whether I hurt someone else or not and the damage I caused to so many in the process. Thankfully, I was able to leave the theater and breathe a sigh of relief knowing it’s not who I am anymore and instead can say I’m doing everything I can now to rectify my past and be a better person. In light of that, I highly recommend this movie and hope when awards season comes around that it may get recognized with a few nominations, as it definitely is one that well-deserves it, especially for Lopez and Wu.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

One day many years ago, a fisherman’s wife blessed her husband with twin sons. They loved the children very much, but couldn’t think of what to name their children. Finally, after several days, the fisherman said, “Let’s not decide on names right now. If we wait a little while, the names will simply occur to us.” After several weeks had passed, the fisherman and his wife noticed a peculiar fact. When left alone, one of the boys would also turn towards the sea, while the other boy would face inland. It didn’t matter which way the parents positioned the children, the same child always faced the same direction. “Let’s call the boys Towards and Away,” suggested the fisherman. His wife agreed, and from that point on, the boys were simply known as “Towards” and “Away”. The years passed and the lads grew tall and strong. The day came when the aging fisherman said to his sons, “Boys, it is time that learned how to make a living from the sea.” They provisioned their ship, said their goodbyes, and set sail for a three-month voyage. The three months passed quickly for the fisherman’s wife, yet the ship had not returned. Another three months passed, and still no ship. Three whole years passed before the grieving woman saw a lone man walking towards her house. She recognized him as her husband. “My goodness! What has happened to my darling boys?” she cried. The ragged fisherman began to tell his story: ‘We were just barely one whole day out to see when Towards hooked into a great fish. Towards fought long and hard, but the fish was more than his equal. For a whole week they wrestled upon the waves without either of them letting up. Yet eventually the great fish started to win the battle, and Towards was pulled over the side of our ship. He was swallowed whole, and we never saw either of them again.” “Oh, my poor boy, that is just terrible!’ She said sobbing. ‘What a huge fish it must have been! What a horrible fish. What a horrible fish.’ ‘Yes, it was dear…’ said her husband. ‘But it didn’t even compare to the one that got Away!’”

Silly Joke #2

Phil and Bob went to a restaurant for dinner and both ordered steaks. As soon as the waiter brought out the two steaks, Phil quickly picked out the bigger steak for himself. Bob wasn’t happy about that. “When are you going to learn to be polite?” he said angrily. “Well, if you had the chance to pick first, which one would you have picked?” said Phil. “The smaller piece, of course!” responded Bob humbly. “Well that, what are you complaining about? The smaller piece is what you got, right?”, Phil said smiling ear to ear.

Silly Joke #3

When Uncle Charlie died of old age, Bill was bequeathed his uncle’s prized Amazon parrot. This parrot was fully grown — with a bad attitude and a worse vocabulary. Every other word was an expletive. Those that weren’t expletives were, to say the very least, extremely rude. Bill tried hard to change the bird’s attitude and was constantly saying polite words, playing soft music–anything he could think of to try and set a good example… Nothing worked. Exasperated, he yelled at the bird. But the bird just got louder. Then he shook the parrot. But the bird just got angrier and ruder. Finally, in a moment of desperation, Bill put the parrot in the freezer. For a few moments he heard the bird squawking, kicking, and screaming…Then, suddenly, all was quiet. Bill was frightened that he might have hurt his dead uncle’s prized parrot and quickly opened the freezer door. The parrot calmly stepped out onto Bill’s extended arm and said, “I am truly sorry that I might have offended you with my language and action and I humbly ask your forgiveness. I will now, from this day forth, endeavor to correct my behavior so that such an ill-perceived outburst never again occurs.” Bill was completely astonished at the bird’s change in attitude and was about to ask what had caused such a dramatic change when the parrot continued, “But I need to ask one thing, what did the chicken do?”

Bonus Silly Joke

A cub reporter for a small-town newspaper was sent out on his first assignment one day. He submitted the following report to his editor. “Mrs. Smith was injured in a one-car accident today. She is recovering in County Hospital with lacerations on her breasts.” The Editor scolded the new reporter, saying. “This is a family paper!!! We don’t use words like breasts around here!! Now go back and write something more appropriate!” The young reporter thought long and hard. Finally, he handed the Editor the following report. “Mrs. Smith was injured in a one-car accident today. She is recovering in County Hospital with lacerations on her ( o )( o )”

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson