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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! 

Happy Monday!

What do I want my wish to be for my birthday?

Wishing that USWNT soccer star Alex Morgan was single…

Wait. I need to think more realistically about this. Alex Morgan isn’t single. What else do I really want that’s both fully achievable and would create an incomparable feeling of rejuvenation?

Oh, right. Dinosaurs eat people.

Maybe something with fewer teeth instead.

Have a Better Week Than Last Week. 

The Doctor is In

Image result for jeff goldblum jurassic world cameo

(Monorail scene in Jurassic World. Image from Now You Know Facts Online)

Dr. Ian Malcom’s clever book placements in Jurassic World were no coincidence.

The actor, who co-starred in 1993’s Jurassic Park and 1997’s The Lost World: Jurassic Park, will appear in Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment’s next Jurassic World film.
–Rebecca Ford, The Hollywood Reporter

Jeff Goldblum’s return sparks a few thoughts:

  • Given the late casting, was Jeff Golblum supposed to be in the Jurassic World sequel from the inception of this new trilogy’s story development? Or was this late casting news intended to keep plot details as secret as possible, on a literal need-to-know basis for the public?
  • The storytelling gate has been opened, if only slightly, to begin to gradually weave the original cast back to the Jurassic universe before a dramatic Act III entrance in the third film of this trilogy.
  • The story and character arc for Dr. Ian Malcolm must be quite good to entice Jeff Goldblum to return 20 years later.

Without context or plot details (or seeing the film, quite frankly), it’s difficult to make a final, definitive judgement on this casting move. Having said that, welcoming Jeff Goldblum to the Jurassic World sequel is very exciting. From 10,000 feet, this decision seems like a great bridge not only from the original film (and The Lost World) to this new sequel, but also in bringing back the tone and wit of Jurassic Park that was noticeably absent in Jurassic World.

Otherwise, this forthcoming sequel may feel a bit chaotic…aside from all of the dinosaurs.

P.S. I wonder what Ellie Sattler’s book title would be?

Amber’s (Pre) Historic Reveal

img_2115

(R.C. McKellar, Royal Saskatchewan Museum)

Remember Dr. Alan Grant’s theory of connectivity between velociraptors (raptor meaning “bird of prey”) and birds in the 1993 cinematic masterpiece Jurassic Park? 

Well, this at least seems to be pointed towards that direction.

“…this is the first time that scientists are able to clearly associate well-preserved feathers with a dinosaur, and in turn gain a better understanding of the evolution and structure of dinosaur feathers.”

–Kristin Romey, National Geographic

In perfect harmony, the sample discussed in the above quotation was preserved in discovered, yes, a piece amber about the size of an apricot that’s been dried! True story: Fans of the movie just gasped.

While this is exciting news in the paleontology world, it’s worth noting that this discovery in northern Myanmar doesn’t appear to be a gateway to a real-life Jurassic Park. A bummer, for sure. However, learning new facts and realities about such a fascinating, prehistoric period in history is incredible. It’s the latest proof and vindication of life’s eternal pursuit of knowledge and its countless mysteries waiting to be revealed with the right amount of curiosity and tenacity.

Thankfully, Jurassic Park sparked a societal interest across generations in events and creatures from more than 65 million years ago.

Michael Crichton and Steven Spielberg found a way.