Some of you have been asking Thriller Guy where he’s been for the last few weeks. Sick, is where he’s been. Camped out in the land of influenza. TG might appear to have been hewn from a block of granite, but age has introduced cracks in that noble visage. TG recommends at the first sign you might be coming down with something, go to your doctor. He or she is going to give you the flu test and the result is going to come up negative because the test is worthless, (your doctor will admit this if questioned) and the doctor will try to send you home with nothing, or worse, an antibiotic. It seems the CDC has told docs this year to deny prescribing Tamiflu unless the test is positive, a very rare result. Why deny an extremely helpful drug? Because “they” didn’t make enough to go around. A simple Google search will show that three years ago the CDC recommended that docs treat for the symptoms and ignore the test, and this year they are recommending that docs treat to the test and ignore the symptoms. Doctors are famous for sending their patients on their way with the admonition to stay off the Internet and not Google their various diseases. They say that the results will “confuse” us and everyone knows the Internet is unreliable. While TG stands on the side of science (and against those morons who don’t get their children vaccinated, thus negating the lessons of a thousand years of history) TG does not stand on the side of blind obedience and trust. Demand the Tamiflu. You can look it up.
What’s up with all the brouhaha about the movie, American Sniper? As noted above, TGhas been too sick to go to a theatre, but he has reviewed several books written by the coauthor, Scot McEwen, of the book, American Sniper, the bio of sniper Chris Kyle from which the movie was adapted. As far as TG can tell, the powerful movie incites reactions from both ends of the political spectrum. If you love the movie, you’re some sort of murderous right-wing killer, and if you hate it you’re a left-wing socialist, bleeding heart liberal. TG has to ask, what if you enjoy watching war movies where, shockingly (insert emoticon indicating sarcasm) people shoot (very accurately, in this case) people who are designated “the enemy.” TG would like to note that the best-selling bio didn’t seem to provoke the sort of rabid reaction that the movie has, which TG supposes is because of the basic differences between reading a book and watching a movie.
You know what? maybe it’s the lingering effects of the flu, but TG is already as bored with writing about this as you probably are with reading about it.
It’s a movie, people. And first it was a book. Yes it was non-fiction, but it wasn’t the real thing. TG always harkens back, in these circumstances, to a comment made by his buddy Henry Allen years ago. Henry was a Marine and did a stint in Vietnam. He and TG both worked at the Washington Post when the movie Platoon came out. This was a powerful war movie about Vietnam, and it was hailed for its realism. Henry said people would come up to him and ask if the movies was “just like being in Vietnam?” He would shake his head and say, well, no, because it’s a movie. No one liked that answer very much, but it always made complete sense to me. It’s a movie, people.
As anyone who reads this blog knows, TG is sick of listening to folks who have iron-plated opinions, be they from the far left or right. And rather than counsel a moderate path, advising tolerance and the spirit of compromise, TG would just like to tell you all who keep going on about this to just shut the fuck up. You’re all just both sides of the same self-absorbed, pompous coin. Maybe that’s the flu talking, but that’s the way TG thinks even when he’s in the peak of good health.
And by the way, the fiction series about sniper Gil Shannon written by McEwen and co-author Thomas Koloniar – One Way Trip, and Target America are the first two entries – is terrific. In it Shannon leaves a sea of enemy bodies behind him as he fights international terrorists across the world. If you like military fiction, this is as good as it gets. And there’s not one ambiguous moment in it to slow the action. But if you don’t like the sight of blood, don’t read it. It’s simple.
And if you get sick, demand the Tamiflu. Trust TG on this one.