Overheard conversations, I Am Legend and a Reminiscence

by Brendan Strong

Things said by, to, at or around me in the past few weeks…

“What kind of finance minister doesn’t have a bank account?”
“Well, I suppose it explains his difficulty with understanding how cheques work…”

***

“Quite a riddle… is there any way to cross Dublin without passing a pub?”
“Take the M50. You wouldn’t pass anything that way.”
“Aye, but you wouldn’t be long at it before you wanted a pub.”

***

“They assembled that IKEA building, you know. Just like flat pack furniture!”

***

Watching I Am Legend
“Jesus, Will Smith! He is a legend!”
We fell into watching the movie, knowing no more than it was a Will Smith film. With CGI.
“Is there a Will Smith movie without CGI?” I ask. My wife knows loads of them. That shot me down.
An interesting movie, its environmental bent being proved not just in the story (question of human tinkering with the things of nature), but also in its form (lots of dark screen stuff with only the sound of heavy breathing and anxious zombie grunts) – if the movie is successful, the frequent and long periods of darkness could save megawatts around the world in the need for less light. A la Blackle, if you will.
Not long into the show, I figured out it was probably some kind of zombie film. My wife hates these kinds of films. So, after agonising over what I should do (enjoy the film, or warn my wife), A zombie comes after Will Smith. This happens in darkness, with much grunting and fast breathing and finally, our hero falling out of a window with some yoke writhing all over him. Actually, the yoke was possibly something Will Smith has to deal with quite regularly – someone who dislikes sunlight, but wants to consume anything to do with the hip, rapping, cheeky chappy.
As my wife screamed, I assured her… “Lookit, they’re not dangerous…”
“Did you see what just happened?!”
“No, they kept the screen dark nearly the whole way through. Besides, look at them. They’re like Emily.” I said (Emily, our five month old daughter)
“What?!” Disbelief sliding into indignancy.
“Well, look at them… They’re kind of pale and you can see their veins… they’re also bald… and, look at the way they chew everything around them. Also, that fellow that was looking for Will Smith’s autograph – did you see the way he was trying to lift himself to crawl when he hit the ground? It’s just like Emily!” I was triumphant.
“Shut up” she said, once again.
“You would say very little if you couldn’t say that” I said, hastening to some slippery moral high ground.
“I wouldn’t say it if you would only say very little” She said, snatching the flag.

***

A Reminiscence

I lived in Cabra some time ago with two kindly gentlemen. We were all different, but all the same. We were all over the place. It was real fun.
Our landing light burnt out one day, so two of us (interestingly, the other one also called Brendan) decided to get up there and fix it. First, Brendan tried to change the bulb, but couldn’t reach. He then tried to position a chair on the landing, but the landing was too narrow, and the chair was unstable. He asked me to help, and I agreed: “Yes, let’s shed some light on this situation”
I held the chair, and passed him up the replacement bulb, as he passed me the dead one and fitted the new one. It was complicated. We hit the switch, and there was light.
“Let there be light” I said, the genesis of a smart comment for me.
“Many hands make light work” he said.

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