COLUMN: Perry Bergson — Jan. 7, 2012

Perry
Perry Bergson
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The three latest Batman movies, including this promotional shot from The Dark Knight Rises, were on the new year’s menu for a curious managing editor.

If there was a six-minute span in my life that I was one of the cool kids -- a dubious proposition at best -- it’s long behind me.

That was brought into sharp focus on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

While it’s hard for a married non-drinker to get himself into a lot of trouble, New Year’s Eve was even quiet by our standards.

We went out for a nice meal after I finally managed to extricate myself from the office and then we sat on the couch to watch a movie. We never did switch over to the TV around midnight; we stayed with the final 15 minutes of the movie.

When it ended, we pulled on our walking clothes and got our old dog out for an hour-long walk. He has always enjoyed when the three of us get out because he assumes that my wife and I can take care of each other. As a result, he can do a little of exploring, which means finding extra sniffs, doing some extra scavenging and reading the pee-mail left by other dogs.

By 1:30 a.m. I was sound asleep, a bit of a change for someone who regularly crawled into bed around 4 or 5 a.m. because of the shifts I worked in my last job.

On New Year’s Day, my hound and I headed out to one of his favourite spots in Prince Albert, the walking trails at Little Red River Park. He has always loved the chance to be off-leash and the opportunity to sniff tracks from deer and other assorted critters is a favourite of his. He also usually gets to meet some other dogs there, something he misses from his daily afternoon dog walk at the off-leash park in Brandon.

I picked up some coffee on the way out there and while he sniffed, I sipped. It was a warmer-than-expected day, so I had the chance to tug off some extra winter clothing.

I listened to a podcast on my headphones as we walked in this gorgeous, serene place. The old fellow got a little frisky when he met a dog on the path for the first time, and when we parted ways he even headed in the other direction with them for a bit. Apparently he remembered at some point that it was nearly lunch time, so, upon further evaluation, he headed back to the car with me.

Most people will understand the appeal of a nice walk. Fewer will get the concept that when we got home, I put a movie on, and with my bike sitting on its trainer, went for a 90-minute ride in front of the TV.

I’ve been pretty lazy lately so it felt good to spin my legs.

If there’s an element of cool to that -- again, a highly debatable proposition -- it’s over when I tell you what I watching.

My cable provider recently gave me free access to a dozen movies and the deal was ending. So I decided that this would be my chance to watch the three Batman movies in the latest trilogy, Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012).

To say that they are a little different from the old Adam West TV show that ran from 1966-68 -- 120 episodes that I watched over and over in reruns after school -- would be an immense understatement.

Where Batman on TV was campy and didn’t take itself seriously, the new trilogy is brooding and takes a dim view of human nature.

After we made pizza from scratch, we returned to the third in the series, a nearly three-hour movie that might have 20 minutes of Batman actually on screen.

I didn’t find myself in either of the two main camps regarding the trilogy. Some people loathe them and a good number love them. I fell somewhere in the mushy middle.

Heath Ledger’s performance as the Joker in the second movie drew rave reviews, but I wasn’t completely sold because I think it’s easier to play crazy than it is to perform quiet nuance.

Having said that, Meryl Streep probably wouldn’t have made a great Joker.

So if there are any take-home lessons from the preceding 800 words, here they are.

1. Little Red is a nice place to walk.

2. The Batman movies are OK.

3. The world is in no danger of any red-headed managing editors from central Saskatchewan becoming cool any time soon.

 

• • • 

 

Dave Leaderhouse’s excellent column won’t be a midweek delight anymore.

We’ve moved Dave’s weekly offering to the Saturday edition of the Daily Herald, starting five days from now.

Organizations: Prince Albert, The Dark Knight Rises, Daily Herald

Geographic location: Little Red River Park, Brandon, Little Red Saskatchewan

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