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Just recovered from Saturday... 

...where I broke my brain on a Rubik's Cube

I concur with Sue that Clark Johnson’s ACTRA Studio talk did not disappoint. Mr. Johnson covered the span of his lifetime. This guy has had enough experiences and stories for two lifetimes. He was a frustrated college and pro-football player in Canada and the U.S. before working as a special effects guy on David Cornenberg’s The Dead Zone. He was the most experienced cast-member of Homicide: Life on the Street so successfully lobbied producer Barry Levinson for the opportunity to direct episodes of the series. He recounted, with pride, inspiring emotion in Coretta Scott King when he showed her Boycott, his film about the bus boycotts of the civil rights movement in the 1960’s. He had a couple of stories about working on location in Baltimore during the filming of both The Wire and Homicide. I gather it is a rough town, but, that by being on the streets of Baltimore, the result is a show, in Mr. Johnson’s words, “in tune with the city we’re talking about.”

Perhaps the most fascinating story CJ told was that of his parents. Both were civil rights activists who relocated to Canada in order to avoid the vitriol the movement was inspiring. Sue already mentioned that he is developing a film about them, but I wanted to add that I sincerely hope he gets it made.

Yesterday afternoon also held a Rubik’s cube demonstration at Park Lane mall featuring Cube gurus Matt Walter, Dave Campbell, and Dan Knights of Cubers, a doc I wrote about for the Coast fest guide. Filmmaker Richard LeBlanc was also on hand to give out Rubiks’ to anyone who would take one and try solving it as a promotion for his movie premier tomorrow night.

Dan Knights has a clear way of teaching at least the first layer of the Cube to newbies and it all makes sense when you have a cube in your hand. I can get the first layer but the final two are beyond me right now. Dave Campbell, who runs, a resource for speed-cubing, was the most encouraging. He told me that as you use the cube more and more, you get accustomed to where each square is going to move and can better plan your moves. “You can solve it, and I say that with the utmost confidence,” Dave C said. I hope so. I’ve been playing with the damn thing since I got it yesterday afternoon.

Cubers shows tonight (Sunday) at 9:30 at Park Lane.

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Vol 26, No 34
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