10 May 2008

Post 125

I caught most of The Last Crusade on TV today. Indiana Jones is--I dunno--it's fun; I kinda like it. Something about how unabashedly over-the-top it is somewhat charming. It's the first time in several years that I've seen anything from any of the Indiana Jones movies; I'd forgotten how exciting they were when I was a child.

In The Last Crusade, a bad man shoots the elder Dr. Jones and then demands that Indy go retrieve the Holy Grail. Knowing that the Grail is the only thing that can save his father, Indy goes for the Grail. That made sense to me when I was younger, but today it kinda caught me off guard. I mean, I can understand wanting to save your father's life, but is that really worth granting infinite longevity to an evil man--or any man, really: we were not meant to live forever in this state.

Now, I realize that the question is nearly absurd because this is not a possible situation to have, but the principles of this conundrum are fascinating to me. I can't think of a similar predicament that might actually come up real life, but I think there must be one. I think standing up for what is right when your own life is pretty intense, but to sacrifice the life of a loved one for the greater good--I can't imagine.

I'm sure there's a statement regarding the Atonement to be made here, but I daresn't liken the suffering of the Christ to Indiana Jones, so I'll call this good for now; I prefer raising questions to making statements anyway.


  1. Yeah... this a the real pickler. Makes me think of (I've been dying to incorporate this into something) THE PINK PANTHER STRIKES AGAIN!

    If you haven't seen the film I HIGHLY recommend it.

    The basic plot of this movie runs thusly: Dreyfus hates Clouseau, escapes from the insane asylum, trys to kill him, is foiled by Clouseau bumbling around (as usual),and forms a gigantic criminal organization so he can kidnap Professor Fosbender and fund the creation of a doomsday machine to ransom the nations of the world for the death of Clouseau - of course, nobody can kill Clouseau and he never even knows he's being attacked. Dreyfus is furious and is going to start destroying places, but is again foiled by Clouseau's bumbling. One of my favorite comedy flicks... you've got to be in a silly mode though.

    Ok, so there's this scene:
    Dreyfus: “You and I... we're going to join forces, Professor. We're going to build the Doomsday Machine and conquer the world. - Have a sweet. – *Dreyfus picks up a sweet and holds it in front of the professor*“

    Professor: “You're mad.”

    Dreyfus: “Mad? On the contrary...every day, in every way...I've been getting better and better. Mad? Was Hannibal mad? Or Alexander? Surely Napoleon was the maddest of them all. Mad? We shall see, Professor.”

    Professor: “I shall tell you nothing.”

    Dreyfus: “I think you will.”

    Professor: “I'll die first.”

    Dreyfus: “Show Miss Fassbender to the schoolroom.”

    Professor’s Daughter: “Daddy?”

    *Cut to a schoolroom setting*

    Professor’s Daughter: “What are you going to do?”

    Dreyfus: *While taking a clawed glove from a henchman* “Something so very, very painful, so hideous... your father will have no choice but to cooperate.”

    *Dreyfus and henchmen all put cotton in their ears. Dreyfus turns to the chalkboard with the claw and scrapes it down the board. Professor’s Daughter Screams.*

    So, of course the professor has to help build the doomsday machine. *Grin*

    It's that kind of thing. Do you save the one you love or help cause mass mayhem and destruction? Do you kill the person you think to be the greatest detective in the world, or sit back while a madman destroys the UN building?

    I dunno what I would do. I hope I'd be strong enough to save the world. I hope I'd have the nerves of Abraham, but I don't know that I'm that amazing. It's hard to be tortured and harder to let somebody else be tortured. Good question Schmetterling. I'm asking it too.

  2. Well, thanks for nothing, Schlange....

    Hey World: Schlange wants to know, too!

  3. You think you're going to get some kind of answer to this question? Are you kidding?

    The philosophers have been arguing about this for years . . .
    And we all know how far it's gotten them.

  4. What, don't even care to speculate? I submit that it is far better to go for the greater good. Anything else just seems selfish.

    Any rebuttals, anyone?

  5. I'll say this much--the greatest sacrifice EVER was done for the greater good. But sometimes there's a way out besides the sacrificing, I think . . .

  6. Blast. I knew you'd ask for an example. Why can't you be like my two little piano students, who take my words as law?

    In other words, I have no example readily available.

    But never fear. I shall come up with one.

  7. .

    How am I supposed to rebut if I haven't butted yet?

  8. confuzzled: But of course! Besides, the least I can do is give you something to puzzle over while you're bored at work.

    th.: haha, very funny. Feel free to but and rebut; even tangentially related comments are welcomed here.

  9. I still don't have an example. In fact, every example I start thinking of only serves to prove your point.

    So--for the moment--you're right :)

  10. What? ME??? I'M right?

    Wow. I revel in it--for the time being.

  11. Hey, I object! You're acting like I'm naturally combative or something . . . and that I think I'm always right. And 'tis not so, no . . . 'tis not so!!

  12. Okay! I'm sorry! You're right: you're not always right.

    Uh. So perhaps you're wrong and you ARE always right.

    Er. At least--behave as though--you think that--when you--and then I--

    Um. What?

  13. Irrelevantly, how do we feel about the double contraction 'tisn't? I've never seen it before, but I kinda like it. See, you coulda said, "'Tisin't so."

    Huh? Huh? Anybody?

  14. I'm not a fan of your 'tisn't. Besides, I was aiming for a specific rhythm and rhyme with "'tis not so, no . . . 'tis not so," which could not have been achieved with your contractionized version.

  15. Contrationized--nice.

    So? Any examples for me yet? =)

  16. I already told you that all of my examples serve to prove your point and not mine, making you (at least temporarily) right.

    Also, the ones that even come close in my brain are all examples of slapdash deus ex machina.

  17. Yet you keep throwing in that "temporarily" clause....

  18. Just my subtle way of keeping your ego in check. That's all. At some point, you're bound to be wrong. Just not about this.

  19. Suddenly, my ego is no longer in check.

    Sadly, though, unleashing it does me little good because I'm not very good at gloating. All the same... POINT FOR ME!