November 30, 2008

"Do you think Palin has ruined Alaska as a symbol of the untrammeled frontier for future filmmakers and novelists?"

"No. Hopefully, she fades from memory quickly."

Hope won the election, it's true, but that is one hope that will not be fulfilled.

IN THE COMMENTS: Dust Bunny Queen:
I don't get the connection between Sarah Palin, Alaska as an "untrammeled frontier" (whatever that means?) and making a film about a woman and her dog.

Seriously, these people -- the interviewer and interviewee -- are deranged and irrelevant. They wouldn't recognize an untrammeled frontier since I doubt they are ever more than 15 minutes from a Starbucks.
Don't understand what "untrammeled frontier" means? What is a "trammel," anyway?
1. A shackle used to teach a horse to amble.

2. Something that restricts activity, expression, or progress; a restraint.

3. A vertically set fishing net of three layers, consisting of a finely meshed net between two nets of coarse mesh. 4. An instrument for describing ellipses.

5. An instrument for gauging and adjusting parts of a machine; a tram.

6. An arrangement of links and a hook in a fireplace for raising and lowering a kettle.
Now, what are we supposed to picture being done to a frontier?

45 comments:

C. Schweitzer said...

I don't understand the question or the answer. What does Sarah Palin have to do with the 'symbol of the untrammeled frontier'"? How does she negate that?

Even if you don't like her politics, she seems quite the picture of a self-sufficient, tough Alaskan (she's commercially fished, she's hunted, she's gutted out a moose, and she flies her own plane--that's damn frontiers-y to me)

I love how the interviewer just assumes the interviewee has the same frame of reference. If I would be asked that question, I'd have responded "huh?"

Expat(ish) said...

What was the last novel that used Alaska as the "untrammeled frontier?" (And why would an editor allow such a cliche?)

The last film I saw about Alaska had a black guy (not Barack) and an inherited dog sled team. What else have I missed?

More seriously, I'd be happy to reccy to my son to go to Alaska and get a smart, self sufficient, ambitious, hard working, *hot* and womanly wife like Palin.

Likewise I'd be happy if my daughter found a good, hard working, healthy, kid/home sharing man like Todd. (When she's 50 and I'm dead, that is.)

-XC

Darcy said...

Yes. Yes, I do think that Palin has singlehandedly ruined Alaska for deranged liberal filmmakers and novelists.

What a pity. :)

Bissage said...

A lot of people see Alaska as pure, natural and unspoiled.

That’s why they don’t want a bunch of men up there drilling deep and pumping her dry.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

No, but I think Kelly has ruined the concept that intelligence is required in order to be a filmmaker or novelist.

Seneca the Younger said...

I think the phrase "whistling past the graveyard" might be a short summary.

DeadAvenger said...

The title may have originally been "Socially Retarded".

Jim Howard said...

Of course Palin must be forgotten!

She's not a woman at all!

Everyone knows that women are helpless victims, unable to care for themselves and forever under the thumb of some man somewhere.

AJ Lynch said...

The NYT writer wrote:

"reminding us of how people on the lower rungs of society are the first to fall off when times get tough. "

Hah Hah the NYT writer is herself one rung away from being on the lowest rung of society!That rung is reserved for "the unemployable".

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I'm with Schweitzer. I don't get the connection between Sarah Palin, Alaska as an "untrammeled frontier" (whatever that means?) and making a film about a woman and her dog.

Seriously, these people the interviewer and interviewee are deranged and irrelevant. They wouldn't recognize an untrammeled frontier since I doubt they are ever more than 15 minutes from a Starbucks.

PatCA said...

No particular connection is needed when one wants to stick a pin in the latest leftist voodoo doll. "I Blame Bush" will soon give way to "I Blame Palin."

This woman is a "Social Realist"? I would say "Social Depressive." Next year the NYT will have an article bemoaning the fact that nobody watches good movies any more.

hdhouse said...

Can there be any connection between Ms. Palin and some of the largest vegetables on earth both coming from Alaska?

Jack said...

As much as anything else -- and possibly *more* than anything else -- what motivates the Republican base is their hatred for liberals. If something irritates liberals, the base will love it.

As soon as liberals began to express horror at the thought of an airhead and zealot like Palin becoming president, it was guaranteed she would become the de facto leader of the party.

You know what's sad and pathetic? Now Joe the Plumber is throwing McCain under the bus. That poverty-stricken poseur would never have become a cultural totem for the Republican Party if it wasn't for McCain, but Joe has quickly learned that to be popular with the base, you have to be an extremist too pure for that nasty old McCain.

Jack said...

*Even if you don't like her politics, she seems quite the picture of a self-sufficient, tough Alaskan (she's commercially fished, she's hunted, she's gutted out a moose, and she flies her own plane--that's damn frontiers-y to me)*

I think the issue is that a divisive hate-monger like Palin has come to be the leading association people make to the state of Alaska. It's like branding your state with the face of George Wallace. (Granted, Palin's not a racist like Wallace, but she tries, like Wallace, to divide the nation and turn her base against the rest of the country. Palin is the candidate for those people who think 53% of America are "traitors."

God help us if she ever gets elected.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Now Joe the Plumber is throwing McCain under the bus.

McCain deserves to be thrown under the bus. He has been shafting conservatives and throwing the Republican Party under the bus for years. He is a poser.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I think the issue is that a divisive hate-monger like Palin has come to be the leading association people make to the state of Alaska

Really??? Give examples of her hate mongering.

Be back later, off to buy some fresh dungeness crab. Eagerly awaiting examples of hate mongering with references and citations. In otherwords, not just pulled from your ass.

garage mahal said...

It's not hatemongering to point out there are parts of America and people that live there that aren't real Americans. And you can't hold it against her that white supremacists like the Political Cesspool and Randall Terry were recruiting outside her rallies either.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I think the issue is that a divisive hate-monger like Palin has come to be the leading association people make to the state of Alaska.

You guys crack me up.

AllenS said...

"I think the issue is that a divisive hate-monger like Palin..."

I think your mullet is on the wrong end of your head.

Chip Ahoy said...

Bloody wow. I always understood untrammeled to be synonymous with untrampled (a word spellcheck rejects in "un" combination form), as in when hiking at elevation, "Hey Dumbass! Get off that tundra and stick to the trail. For we must leave the delicate layer of tundra untrammeled."

Now I have to alter my whole visualization.

chickenlittle said...

God help us if she ever gets elected

Palin 2012

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Jack says: As much as anything else -- and possibly *more* than anything else -- what motivates the Republican base is their hatred for liberals

Dude, have you been asleep for the last eight years?

former law student said...

What is a "trammel," anyway?

Only half of the most memorable double-play combination of modern times, that's all.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oc_yETYratI

former law student said...

God help us if she ever gets elected

Palin 20:12


Ah, the uproar of many peoples, who roar like the roaring of the seas; and the rushing of nations, that rush like the rushing of mighty waters!

Big Mike said...

Ann, the question you posed about the meaning of "trammel" -- if you look at the history of the frontier for the lower 48 the people there on the frontier were often several days' travel from the protection of government and often had to be their own law, hence the meaning of trammel as "something that restricts activity, expression, or progress; a restraint" is clearly correct.

Theodore Roosevelt, back when he was a Montana rancher, was criticized by his neighbors after spending forty hours without sleep to take three thieves he had captured to the nearest town where there was a jail and where they could be brought before a judge. The neighbors would have simply hanged the men and been done with it.

So by that standard Alaska in the 21st century is scarcely "untrammeled." Aircraft and helicopters can bring the law wherever it is needed. Still, Alaska is a place where nature can intrude violently at any moment (there's a picture somewhere out on the web of a trio of black bears playing on the swing and slide set one couple set up in their back yard) and anyone not living in downtown Anchorage should consider carrying a .357 or .45 handgun, lest they come face to face with a wolf pack or hungry bear (black, grizzly, or polar).

Trooper York said...

The term untrammeled was first popularized by Hall of Fame broadcaster Ernie Harwell when Alan Trammell retired in 1996 as the soft handed hard hitting shortstop of the Detroit Tigers. An excellent hitter and a fine fielder he also played on a team with Cecil Fielder. Alan Trammell was the heart and sole of the team and was a “True” Tiger. The term untrammeled came to mean losing your signature player due to retirement as a well known baseball cliché. Just as “Pulling a Ripken” came to mean being boring and showing up for work every day and “Jetering” has come to mean staying away from celebrity bimbos at the club because they have smelly twats.
(Hey I Jetered that Shortie!, Baseball Slang through the Years, Bill James, The Sporting News Press, 2006)

Darcy said...

Oh! Love my Tigers, FLS. I don't even have to look at that video to know who they are.

Darcy said...

Trooper! No mention of Lou Whitaker?? For shame! :)

Trooper York said...

The keystone partner during those halcyon days of Tiger Supremacy was Sweet Lou Whitaker who had also had a secret. Not many people knew that he was the uncle of Dennis Rodman as his full name was Louis Rodman Whitaker, Jr. Sweet Lou was voted the American League rookie of the Year in 1978 but was most renowned for a habit he shared with his nephew Dennis. When the stress of the game became to much for him he would like to get dressed up in his mothers wedding dress and wear it in the locker room. Baseball has really progressed in recent years so he only endured mild teasing as evidenced by his nickname “Sweet Lou.” After retirement he went into television production and is currently executive producer of the TLC series “Say Yes to the Dress.”
(Hey I Jetered that Shortie!, Baseball Slang through the Years, Bill James, The Sporting News Press, 2006)

Ron said...

Well, Darcy, to be 'unwhittakered' doesn't mean to be without Roger Whittaker, who's ability to turn two is somewhat limited!

paul a'barge said...

It's worth following the link to look at a picture of the mutt who made this comment about Sarah Palin.

Suffice it to say if she disappeared from a parking lot in Alaska, not one of the men up there would look sideways for her.

She'd be a goner. No wonder she is filled to overflowing with hideous jealousy of Sarah Palin.

Darcy said...

LOL, Ron!

And I should have seen that coming, Trooper!

Trooper York said...

The most ambiguous baseball slang phrase actually is in Japanese and references former New York Mets manager Bobby Valentine. As you would find it in Japanese it is spelled
やきゅう すごい へんたい which means “Be my Bobby Valentine.” The exact meaning is obscure but it is believed to mean you should wear a costume with a fake mustache and try to pick up underage Oriental boys on the internet.
(Hey I Jetered that Shortie!, Baseball Slang through the Years, Bill James, The Sporting News Press, 2006)

Synova said...

Seriously?

I understand the mythos of Alaska and the untrammeled frontier. And sure, untrammeled is the right word... that place where there aren't boundaries or limitations.

The problem isn't so much that Palin ruins that, but that people don't really think through what their fantasy would look like in real life. They feel that pull toward a way of life and ideas that really don't have a place in their life... just like a lady I knew often felt the pull of libertarian thought and considered it a "guilty pleasure" because *intellectually* she rejected it.

The emotional pull toward untrammeled self-sufficiency and self-actualization is a guilty pleasure that this woman's intellect rejects.

It's *safe* as a fantasy.

It's *threatening* as a reality.

Because freedom is, by necessity, the freedom to fail. A story about someone who goes to Alaska to work in fish processing and find herself is only interesting as fiction because there is real risk of failure. The triumph is greater the greater the risk.

The other word that goes with "untrammeled" is, of course, "unforgiving."

William said...

This filmmaker draws a yellow cordon around America and calls it a crime. Her purpose in life is to photograph the victims. Sarah has a positive, easy energy about her. She has staked out America, by contrast, as a kind of fairground......I know something of poverty and hanging ten over the abyss. The escape trick, if there is one, is avoiding women like this filmmaker and hanging out with women like Sarah.

Joe said...

Those who claim Palin is a hate-monger, need to go back to Psych 101 and pay special attention to the section on projection.

jdeeripper said...

I don't know if this is going to be another Sarah Palin 200+ Superpost. Not really enough Sarah in it.

But it will bring out the crazies because they saw the words SARAH PALIN.

For the Sarah Palin haters the reaction is an automatic, lower brain response.

In fact here is some documentary footage of the reactions of the typical White Liberal Sarah Palin Hater.

They are a very emotional breed.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Well, I'm back from buying fresh crab and a new copper fire pit for the back deck. Doing my part to keep the economy stimulated :-)

So dissapointed. I guess Jack is still googling the internet to find examples of Sarah Palin "hate mongering".

Trooper York said...

The current slang in baseball has always included the phrase to be “Lasorda-ized” which means to be annoyed by an in your face chubby Italian guy who won’t go away and won’t shut up. Once upon a time it was only a problem for visitor’s to Dodger town at Vero Beach but there has been an outbreak at the Supreme Court where Justice Scalia and Alito have taken turns berating Justice Souter about the designated hitter rule. The heft Italian jurists are champions of the Designated hitter which seems to contradict their so called conservative leanings while Justice Souter hates the rule because he says it is “Just so gay.” Justices Stevens, Kennedy, Breyer and Roberts all feel that Justice Souter knows what he is talking about. Justice Thomas as usual says nothing and Justice Ginsberg has not followed sports since Billie Jean King retired. The members of the court usually spend the first seven hours of their conference arguing about the designated hitter and decide the remainder of the cases in the remaining half hour.
(Hey I Jetered that Shortie!, Baseball Slang through the Years, Bill James, The Sporting News Press, 2006)

Darcy said...

Another coincidence...I have a condo in Vero Beach.

Get out of my head, Trooper!

Cedarford said...

There is something rich about a rich Jew from the Manhattan media elites who not only has a prominent doctor-husband but makes her own more than modest living interviewing other Manhattan illuminaries - asking a woman from Mahattan's film-making elite about the "real, untrammeled Alaska, sans Palin"

Reminds me of two French intelligensia permanently residing in Paris discussing "The real, pure Ivory Coast...undespoiled by the current batch of unprogressive thugs.."

laura said...

Alaska is bigger and more beautiful than even Sarah. It's good to know, because I plan on going back some day.

Duscany said...

Sarah Palin is one of those people that the left invokes ritualistically to show that their hearts are in the right place. It's true that Palin is a lightweight but so is Barbara Boxer. I've never heard a filmmaker or reporter wonder whether Boxer has ruined California, though arguably she's done a lot more harm to this country than Palin ever did to Alaska's moose population.

Modern Otter said...

Reminds me of this scene from Five Easy Pieces

BOBBY: Where are you going?

PALM: Alaska.

BOBBY: Alaska? Are you on vacation?

TERRY (sullenly): She wants to live there, because she thinks it's cleaner.

BOBBY: Cleaner than what?

PALM (to Terry): You don't have to tell everybody about it. Pretty soon they'll all go there and it won't be so clean.

BOBBY: How do you know it's clean?

PALM: I saw a picture of it. Alaska is very clean. It appeared to look very white to me... Don't you think?

BOBBY: Yeah. That's before the big thaw.

PALM: Before the what?

TitusLyposomalDisorder said...

I thought of Alaska has more untamed, libertarian, and wild than Palin.

Don't get me wrong she is cute as button.

But in my mind I picture a poineering spirit akin to Little House on The Prairie.

In the picture I like to think of myself as Nellie Olson. I loved Nellie's hair styles.