So, I get this message from a reader in response to my column last week in which I complained about the amount Hollywood reboots hitting theaters these days:
“Wah, wah! Get off my lawn! I’m guessing you don’t have kids of your own with whom you can share in these new adaptations of movies and characters you loved as a kid,” she wrote.
Touché, but why wouldn’t I just show them the original movies?
She went on: “I have to question your taste in movies anyway if the one movie you’d like to see redone is ‘Road House!’ Awful movie!”
First of all, it was a joke because the 1989 classic starring the late, great Patrick Swayze stands tall on its own. It should never be remade. A group of close friends and I make a point to revisit this cinematic masterpiece every New Year’s Eve and, believe me, it holds up.
“Road House” is, in fact, a brilliant movie, a then-modern western that reinforced some of life’s greatest philosophies, amid a barrage of hand-to-hand combat and gratuitous nudity, to the beat of the late, great, blind, blues guitar virtuoso Jeff Healey and his house band, in a struggle to save the town from some good-ol’-boy villains.
If you go to IMDb.com, the movie’s description is simple: “A tough bouncer is hired to tame a dirty bar.” Swayze’s protagonist Dalton is not a bouncer, though. He is a “cooler,” a not-so-big guy who is able outsmart and defuse drunken hooligans with Zen-like patience, who constantly tells his coworkers to “Be nice,” that is, “until it’s time to not be nice.”
“Nobody ever wins a fight,” Dalton, a NYU philosophy grad, says. This is self evident and truer words may have never been spoken.
“Take the biggest guy in the world, shatter his knee and he’ll drop like a stone,” Dalton preaches. While this perhaps holds true in a bar fight, I think of it as every individual, no matter powerful they seem, is only human.
“Pain don’t hurt,” Dalton tells the town doctor/love interest. Sure, this sounds like macho B.S., but it’s deeper than you think. It’s also a nod to a scene in “Lawrence of Arabia” where Peter O’Toole’s Lawrence extinguishes the flame from a match with his fingers. When asked what his trick was, Lawrence says, “The trick ... is not minding that it hurts.” Pain is unavoidable in life, but hiding from pain does nothing for us in the long run. Face it head on, learn and grow from it.
The “Double Deuce” road house in “Road House” is life itself and the fights and thugs inhabiting it are life’s challenges and toxic individuals. How you choose to brave those storms – whether stooping to their level or just plain being nice – teaches you about who you are as a person.
Awful movie? I think not – but I wish I could have been in the board room with producers the day they were discussing the movie’s budget and got to the topic of the monster truck scene. No philosophy lessons there; except, we now know you can destroy an auto dealership’s entire lot with one step of the gas.
Play ball!On July 5, the Miracle League of Northeast Ohio sent its All Star teams to Progressive Field to kick off Major League Baseball’s All Star weekend in Cleveland.
The Miracle League team, based in Medina, played a Miracle League team from Findlay. The players were given All Star jerseys and hats for the game, which was played in left field at Progressive. All of the Miracle League players got hits and scored runs in a one-inning exhibition.
The players also got to meet former Cleveland Indian Dwight “Doc” Gooden who worked with the teams prior to the game.
The players from Medina were Branon Bokmuller, Lauren Bonus, Vincie Periandri, Sawyer Crouse, Evan Janda, Bianca Kennedy, Ben Perkins, David Rutherford, Mason Ritter, Margaret Connors, Albi Oswald, Kevin Martz, Kelly Richardson, Austin Kungl and Wesley Mason-Thiam.
Reporting for dutyOn July 1, Officer Xavier Payton was sworn in as the newest member of the Medina Police Department by Mayor Dennis Hanwell, who was joined by Chief Ed Kinney.
Payton began her field training program July 10. Back in April, Kinney announced his department was looking to hire one new patrol officer in order to get the force back to 39 full-time officers.
Payton has prior law enforcement experience, according to the chief, having most recently served with The Cuyahoga Community College Department of Campus Police and Security Services. She’s a graduate of Notre Dame College in South Euclid and of Berea High School.