Seven Years Later & I’m Still Looking to the Storytelling Horizon
After logging into WordPress this morning, I had a new — yet expected — notification:
Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!You registered on WordPress.com 7 years ago.Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging.
Seven years ago today, I attended a WordPress conference here in Columbus, OH inside the Ohio Union on the campus of THE Ohio State University. My interest in blogging, which I had dabbled with a bit in the past, took on a whole new dimension and meaning by discovering the online publishing platform WordPress. After listening to a few panel discussions, I immediately went up to the open-aired, impromptu customer service lounge on the third floor of the Ohio Union and sat next to an expert (I knew this person wasn’t a genius because I wasn’t in an Apple store) and asked him to help me set up my blog that would be called Jimmy’s Daily Planet.
One of my first blog posts published here — of which there were two I wrote on July 13, 2012 — was titled ‘Eight Years Later & We Look to the Horizon’ that focused on what would be the next societal game-changer. Hence part of the inspiration for today’s title. The other half of the title will be revealed in the second half of this blog post.
FYI – I explained the name of my blog in a post four years ago today. Here’s that summary.
Paying homage to the greatest (albeit fictional) newspaper of all-time, The Daily Planet, this blog was founded on my love of my favorite superhero and disguised human of all-time: Superman and Clark Kent. The scene from Richard Donner’s 1978 classic ‘Superman’ that showed us Christopher Reeve as Clark Kent walk through the bullpen of The Daily Planet for the first time was the moment I knew I wanted to be a journalist. The chaos, palpable energy, and big city, skyscraper setting flew from the screen and landed directly into my impressionable imagination.
These few minutes showing reporters preparing to get the scoop, watching exciting individual and group dynamics (papers scattered, people typing, talking and moving) and hearing creative storytelling pitches is arguably my favorite journalistic hook.
Plus, my name is Jimmy.
And here’s that aforementioned scene.
This ‘Superman’ clip resonates as much today as it did when I saw it for the first time as a kid.
Breaking News: I’m going to step away from publishing new blog posts on Jimmy’s Daily Planet. While Jimmy’s Daily Planet and all of the blog posts — written about a wide range of topics and current events — will remain available online in its exact current form with this same web address, there are other pressing writing projects that I am excited about that I need to commit more time and energy towards. As a matter of fact, it’s been my self-imposed Monday-Friday schedule of having to come up with and write new content on this blog for so many years that has given me the time management skills and confidence to now apply to new storytelling projects.
I wish I had the time to keep writing my daily blog — I really do — but the inspiration for my future projects will be rooted in and connected, in some way, to my writing style, experience, and association with my favorite headline/title I’ve ever come up with: Jimmy’s Daily Planet.
Here’s TV producer, writer, and storyteller extraordinaire Chuck Lorre with the right words at the right time.
I’ve loved writing Jimmy’s Daily Planet. I’ve had so much fun. And now everything that’s been put into this creative storytelling venture throughout the past seven years will be used to tell new, exciting stories that I hope people will connect with and like as much as I do.
Dr. Ian Malcolm, the fictional chaos theorist in ‘Jurassic Park,’ famously said that perfect turn of phrase — by way of the late author Michael Crichton — “life finds a way.”
I’m hoping that brilliant literary and cinematic adage can be amended to “writing finds a way.”
Thank you to everyone who read Jimmy’s Daily Planet and supported me along the way!
50 Years After ‘One Giant Leap,’ We Must Take ‘One Small Step’ Towards the Next Moonshot
July 20, 1969: Following a decades-long pursuit of monetary and intellectual energy for a once-in-a-lifetime moment of unrivaled ingenuity, coupled with the bravery of astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins, the United States successfully landed a man (well, three men) on the moon.
“That’s one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind.”
Still an astonishing achievement 50 years later.
As part of the celebration and necessary reminder of that historic journey into the ever-expansive and unforgiving darkness of space, let’s recall the presidential charge given by John F. Kennedy back in 1962.
Interestingly, my parents attended the “JFK Space Summit” at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum on June 19, 2019. One of the panels, “NASA: From the Moon to Mars 7 Beyond” featured Apollo 11 Lunar Command Module pilot Michael Collins. Moreover, Douglas Brinkley signed copies of his new book American Moonshot: John F. Kennedy and the Great Space Race. My parents bought one of those signed books, which they will hopefully allow me to borrow so I can learn in-depth facts of that amazing journey as chronicled by a New York Times bestselling author.
Listening to President Kennedy’s unambiguous message to Americans is still an astonishingly ambitious — and uniquely American — declaration more than 50 years later.
While there is a long list of awe-inspiring films made about space with a certain reliance on realism– ‘2001: A Space Odyssey,’ ‘Interstellar,’ ‘Gravity,’ ‘Apollo 13,’ ‘The Right Stuff’ — the documentaries and based-on-real-events’ film ‘First Man’ about the famed Apollo 11 mission take on a different gravity of storytelling.
CNN’s ‘Apollo 11’ documentary along with the July 12th-release of the documentary ‘Armstrong’ that is narrated by the quintessentially rebellious American voice of Harrison Ford celebrates and takes us back to how that triumphant mission came together for this country as well as mankind.
Here is the trailer for ‘Armstrong.’
According to reviews, ‘Armstrong’ does not live up to fellow 2019 documentary ‘Apollo 11’ or the major motion picture ‘First Man’ yet it still provides insights into the man who seemed destined to help perform the moonshot of all moonshots.
On that note, what will be America’s next “moonshot”?
There will be no shortage of ideas in the coming week as we celebrate the Apollo 11 mission that was a giant leap 50 years ago, forever holding a unique space in human history.
‘I Have the Power’ to Transport Us Back to 1987
‘Masters of the Universe’ is a superhero movie released in 1987 that told the story of He-Man (Dolph Lundgren) and his skull-faced enemy Skeletor (Frank Langella).
Yes, that’s really acclaimed actor Frank Langella underneath that costume!
Mixing actors and practical effects with (then) state of the art graphics, this movie became a cult classic. Not exactly admired by critics yet some of our favorite movies have received similar (unfair) treatment.
What may surprise people is that this ’80s superhero classic featured young up-and-coming actress named Courtney Cox.
Again, that’s really true. And she delivered a great performance.
Oh, and the actor who played the principal in those ‘Back to the Future’ movies, James Tolkan, was in this movie too.
For this Throwback Thursday, let’s relax and enjoy the trailer for 1987s ‘Masters of the Universe.’
While a new live-action He-Man movie is set to be released in March 2021, it’ll be very difficult to match the ’80s superhero nostalgia and soundtrack of ‘Masters of the Universe.’ While it’s a movie that was made before its time, we should still be thankful that it was made when it was in 1987. It has a unique feel and cast that modern superhero movies just can’t match.
You can call it the differentiating (cosmic) key for ‘Masters of the Universe.’
USWNT Celebrating in NYC
A ticker-tape parade was held today in NYC for the United States Women’s National Team (USWNT) for winning its fourth World Cup trophy in France.
For the team’s most recent World Cup trophy, the USWNT defeated the Netherlands — a women’s national team on the rise — 2-nil in the World Cup Final played on July 7. The red, white and blue won thanks to goals from Megan Rapinoe (61st-minute PK) and Rose Lavelle (69th-minute laser from outside the 18-yard-box).
The 2019 Women’s World Cup, including the years leading up to this summer’s tournament — was an incredible journey for the USWNT. Whether people want to continue to refuse to acknowledge the reality that soccer is a popular sport in the United States, Alex Morgan, and her teammates will continue to play their part in the sport’s clear popularity and growth domestically and abroad.
As reported in the LA Times article titled “Viewership of Women’s World Cup final exceeds 14 million on Fox.”
Fox’s audience of 14.271 million made the U.S. victory the most-watched soccer match on English-language TV in the country since the record-setting 2015 Women’s World Cup final audience that recorded 25 million viewers in prime time. The 2019 audience peaked at nearly 20 million.
In addition to the team’s triumphant victory, the big issue being pushed by the USWNT and its fans — including today during the post-parade ceremony — is the call for equal pay, which seems to be building momentum. Between now and the 2023 Women’s World Cup, it will be interesting if changes will be made with this issue. FIFA will ultimately play a definitive role in this ongoing debate.
Once again, congratulations to the USWNT for winning its fourth World Cup trophy and earning its fourth star!