The Looking Glass


You can tell a lot about a person by what they do for recreation. The internet marketers are keeping track of everything you buy on-line, and everything you look at. They are profiling you as we speak. If you have a TV service, they are modeling you as well. They know about every show and commercial that you watch. Your credit card company is also logging every transaction. Once you have been evaluated by any of these entities, they can profit by selling your profile to other businesses or advertisers. The department stores are also tracking your purchases. We are living in a glass house – nothing is private and nothing is off-limit . . . or sacred. Have you ever bought anything through the mail or over the phone? You may have opened Pandora ’s Box.   So everybody knows your name . . . but how well do you know yourself?

I like good movies, how about you? I’ve been thinking about the movies that I like the best, my top twenty-one. Perhaps if I write them down they may form a pattern. I’ve never done this before, so here goes. Maybe I’ll become more self-aware by pausing to peer into the looking glass. You could do the same.

Top 21 movies

  1. Ben Hur, with Charlton Heston and Haya Harareet.
  2. The Ten Commandments, with Charlton Heston and Anne Baxter.
  3. For Whom the Bell Tolls, with Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman.
  4. Spartacus, with Kirk Douglas and Jean Simmons.
  5. Treasure of the Sierra Madre, with Humphrey Bogart and Walter Houston.
  6. The Sand Pebbles, with Steve McQueen and Candice Bergen.
  7. The Bridge on the River Kwai, with William Holden, Alec Guinness and Sessue Hayakawa.
  8. The Phantom of the Opera, with Claude Rains and Susanna Foster.
  9. To Kill a Mockingbird, with Gregory Peck and Mary Badham.
  10. The Yearling, with Gregory Peck, Jane Wyman and Claud Jarman Jr.
  11. The Robe, with Richard Burton and Jean Simmons.
  12. Casablanca, with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman.
  13. To Have and Have Not, with Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall and Walter Brennan.
  14. The Shepherd of the Hills, with John Wayne, Betty Field and Harry Carey.
  15. King Kong, with Fay Wray and Bruce Cabot.
  16. The Day the Earth Stood Still, with Michael Rennie and Patricia Neal.
  17. The Hunchback of Notre Dame, with Charles Laughton and Maureen O’Hara.
  18. Across the Wide Missouri, with Clark Gable and Maria Elena Marques.
  19. The Red House, with Edward G. Robinson and Allene Roberts.
  20. Scarlet Street, with Edward G. Robinson and Joan Bennett.
  21. To the Last Man, with Randolph Scott and Esther Ralston.

Here are the patterns that I see:

  • Well made movies with Bible themes are powerful stuff.
  • Human nature, light and dark, is fascinating. Life choices are the ultimate test.
  • War and conflict can bring out the heroic and unselfish nature of man.
  • We can imagine our best life through love and adventure stories.
  • When the hero is a tragic figure it mirrors life, courage can be short-lived.
  • Stories about coming of age are priceless, we can re-visit our youth.
  • Science fiction and horror stories reach deep into our imagination.
  • I like any well-told tale about Native Americans – their culture is compelling.
  • The perverse nature of man is worth exploring – we all have it in us.
  • Comedies don’t make my list – I must be too serious.

What do you see? Let me know.

January energy saving tips: Take a quick look at your house, if you have icicles, ice-dams, or uneven snow melt at your roof, it means heat is escaping into your attic and you need to do some air sealing, especially around your attic access panel. If you can see the stud framing lines behind your siding, or the nail heads, you don’t have proper moisture/air barriers in your outside walls; if you have frost or condensation on the bottom of your windows – you have too much moisture in your living spaces – relative humidity should be around 40%. If it’s higher, your air quality and your health could suffer. If you see these things, and you are signed up for energy assistance, give Tri-CAP a call. Have a safe winter season. Thanks to all of you from Tri-CAP and enjoy some good movies this month!

January 2018 Blog

Written by Stephen Bjorklund