Not talking about fencing today though we may discuss Tae-Kwon Do. (I'm feeling in a frivolously twisted mood.)
The other day I was thinking about stakes - you know, why it's important the protagonist succeeds in their goal. There are things that have to be true about the stakes - we have to believe in them. That's the most important thing, believe that they really are important. Otherwise there's no point.
And then I thought about that utterly frivolous* film "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure" - which I love, can't deny it, it's on my list of films that I will watch again, and again, and again (etc).
So what about the stakes? The future of the world. Doesn't get much bigger. And yes it's a silly film, but within its own framework the stakes make perfect sense. Bill and Ted must pass their History presentation because without the music of Wyld Stallyns the world is doomed.
What about one of my other fave films? The Fugitive. Stakes? Protagonist accused of a crime he didn't commit - but it's all to do with a pharmaceutical company faking results from their drug trials, so the result would have a huge impact on society. (On a serious note let me draw your attention to this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-11521873 .)
Of course the stakes aren't always global but if there are any bad consequences to the protagonist's failure make them as big as you can.
In other news
The Daughter is firmly ensconced at University and loving it. She says the lectures are good too. She's a Jujitus black belt but had also had some fun with TKD in the past, but the teacher wasn't very good. She's joined a TKD dojo at University and finds the teacher is part of the England squad and very good. Wouldn't surprise me if she's wondering whether she can qualify for 2012... she's not competitive, oh no, not at all.
The Boy has started his GCSE work at school, he's taken Music as an option and is getting the kind of teaching I wish I'd had: How to play Blues - you could just melt into that sax playing.
* Two frivoli in one blog. Lucky you.
What's on the turntable? "Morph the Cat" by Steely Dan (Donald Fagen) from Morph the Cat