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No, it’s nothing compared to what people have experienced in the Midwest or up north, but hubby and I ventured to drive on 5 highway despite the pouring rain. We were thinking about getting off the highway as soon as we got on, because of the snail-like pace of traffic, but soon traffic cleared, and so did the clouds! As we drove towards the mall, we saw blue skies and sunshine appear.

Alas, it did not last. As I was getting some ice cream at Haagen-Daaz, the ice cream girl and I suddenly heard a loud clatter against the mall roof.

“What is that?” she exclaimed. I told her that it was the rain. A sudden downpour was making all that noise.

“I want to see it,” she said, but she couldn’t, because the glass panes in the roof were opaque.

It was night by the time we drove home, and we noticed that quite a few highway lights were out, making the roads wet and dark, a dangerous combination. I was afraid we were going to miss our exit, because we had to turn off in a heavily wooded area. But oh, the heavenly smell of pine trees managed to penetrate our closed glass windows, anyway. I wished I could have lingered there to enjoy the scent a little longer.

I told hubby I bet that the evening news would be full of car crash stories, and he agreed. Locals here don’t know how to drive in bad weather.

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Last Thursday I had the opportunity to work with a co-worker, T., who was from India. As we chatted, she mentioned that her son was 18 and was applying to college. When I asked about his major, before the word flew out of her mouth, I somehow knew that her answer would be “engineering.”

“How did I know that you were going to say that?”

She laughed and said that everyone in India wanted to go to engineering school. I told her that I was sponsoring a girl in India, and she also wanted to be an engineer. T. told me the reason for this obsession with engineering was due to the fact that in India, if you obtained a technical degree, you could do anything; it opened up more doors for you.

“For example, I got an architecture degree, and my husband is a physicist.” She is now an accountant.

It made sense to me. I asked her if her son went to private school, and she quickly shook her head. “He goes to ____ Public,” she said. He had applied to all of the local state schools, but was now working on his applications to the Ivy Leagues.

“I hope he goes to the state schools, because I don’t want to pay for the other ones. With the economy, his college fund has been going down the drain.”

I sympathized. No doubt her 529 funds took some heavy losses. But if he got accepted to an Ivy League school, I have no doubt that she would be as proud as a peacock.

I just watched WALL-E twice with my family over this weekend, and noticed some plot holes that I wanted to jot down. WALL-E is a nice, mellow family-friendly movie, or so I thought when I tried to get my son to go to sleep watching it. No dice; the movie kept him up late, as the action towards the end awakened his interest.

As a writer, I like to think about all of the possible circumstances in a story, and what does/does not make sense, so here were some points of contention that I noticed:

  • WALL-E and EVE are a little too anthropomorphic. In the beginning they act more robotic, but by the end of the film, they exhibit full human emotions. Although fun and sentimental, I found it somewhat unbelievable.
  • Did the spaceship Axiom’s passengers all come from the U.S.? Or did they come from around the world? Not enough diversity of races was shown in the movie, as most of the passengers were White. I did see some Black passengers, but I didn’t see any Asian, Latino, or Native American passengers. Also, there were no mixed-race persons depicted in the movie, either, which I expected would be more prominent if the passengers came from different parts of earth. Also, no depiction of other languages were in the movie, either. In a class, babies were being taught the English alphabet. Not that I mind, of course. But it just didn’t seem very realistic.
  • UPDATE: hubby pointed out to me that there was one woman captain and one Black captain. That’s better.
  • One thing that disturbed me about the movie was that it did not depict any families (at least not that I noticed). No parents or children were pictured together; rather, the babies were all put in a daycare or class by themselves. Everyone was an absolute individual, in their own room and capsuled chair, which was controlled by the ship. It was like a commune.
  • We see how the Axiom gets rid of its trash, and judging by the amount of waste that would be generated by all of the cups and straws that the passengers consume, a lot of waste would be generated on a daily basis. The trash is freely dumped outside of the ship, into space. Wouldn’t that create a trail of trash near the ship? Yes in the movie, the ship sits in a pristine spot in space, with no trash in sight.
  • Needless to say, where does the Axiom get its energy and food supply? How does it keep running by itself, in an isolated, remote spot in space?
  • I was happy to see that the captain of the Axiom had some gumption to not just survive, but to live, as he put it, and to return to earth. He and the people of the ship are portrayed as generally simple-minded, but good-hearted people. But he was not stupid enough to believe everything his auto-pilot told him. Realistically, though, I don’t know if a captain who had nothing to do on his job and got to sleep until noon every day would willingly give up such a job.
  • After a victorious struggle, WALL-E and the Axiom return to dusty, trashy New York City, all because of one small plant. While the captain is all enthusiastic about a future of farming. I’m sure some of his passengers would have grumbled about having to learn to walk all over again, or to grow their own food instead of having it handed to them every day. No doubt in real life a group of rebels would have formed who refused to live on earth and participate in the work of rebuilding.
  • While the credits are rolling, we see the rest of the story, how the humans rebuild the city, and plants, trees, and fish come back to populate the land and waters. But have these humans learned their lesson? They had to leave the earth because they had trashed it beyond sustainability 700 years ago. It seems that their education aboard the Axiom would have left them ill-prepared to suddenly assume a life of hardship on earth. Most of them would have probably given up after the first few days and went back into hiding on the ship.
  • In the movie, we see one green plant, and at the end, we see grass. But what about animals? Only a cockroach is portrayed throughout the movie. Without farm animals, the human settlers would have no source of meat or milk. Unless they continued to rely on the ship’s stores (wherever they came from), they would most likely starve.

So to sum up, WALL-E is a quaint, pleasant, animated family movie that’s a bit of a throwback to the 1950’s. I wouldn’t let the plot holes keep you from seeing it, if you haven’t already. Just sit back and enjoy, and ignore everything I listed above, and suspend your incredulity.