Friday, September 14, 2012

Michael Keaton: Here You Are Again

We love movies and Michael Keaton has always been one of my favorite actors.  I guess he has an everyman type quality that makes him seem like someone I know.  I really get his sense of humor and I laugh when he's trying to be funny.  I feel like I can relate to many of his characters so perhaps this is another clue to his success in Hollywood. 

Along with being a hands-on home builder and renovator, I’m oftentimes wrapped in the middle of things at home and with our family.   I've had regular Mr. Mom flashbacks as I'm changing toxic diapers, screwing up the well-known routine at school, or in over my head with house cleaning or childcare duties.  And occasionally (on a rehab) I'll throw out the Michael Keaton quote (my favorite from Mr. Mom) when someone asks me about how extensively I'm upgrading the electrical system: "Oh, I don't know," I'll say casually.  "220, 221...whatever it takes."  Who doesn't love that line? 

Now, as much as Mr. Mom, I feel like I can relate to Michael Keaton's role in the movie Multiplicity.  They say a contractor’s home is never finished and MK's character fits this description in this film (with Andie MacDowell.)  But more than having incomplete honey-do's around the house, Keaton is trying to juggle condo construction and commercial projects with smaller residential jobs as he tries not to lose his mind as he deals with tradesmen and subcontractors plus his boss/clients/inspectors/wife/children that he's trying to satisfy at the same time.  Keaton's character needs a break and he clones himself in a desperate move to get things done, keep everyone happy, and maintain his own sanity.  I can relate to this since I've found myself wanting a twin (that knew what I knew) who could help me when things were on the verge of being out of control.

I also really like The Other Guys (starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg).  Now MK may not have one of the lead roles in this movie, but I love the part he plays none the less.   As I’ve said before, on my Pig's Ear renovations, I want and need tradespeople who know how to handle unexpected challenges when they pop up.  We need skilled contractors who don't get rattled.  Like Michael's TOG character (and TLC) said, "I don't want no scrubs."

In Pacific Heights, Keaton epitomized the worst tenant imaginable.  I've thought of this character when I had a renter who was giving me an unusual amount of headaches.

But when it comes to a day that reminds me of one of Michael Keaton's movies, today was a memorable day because today I was Batman.  I put on the caped crusador's costume for our neighbor's 5th birthday party.  The get-up was crazy hot, but it was fun.  I liked being Batman.  I liked walking around hearing strangers whisper excitedly, "Look.  It's Batman!"  It was more than just fun, it was a blast.   

I feel like Mr. Mom sometimes, I’ve been a lot like the frazzled builder from Multiplicity who doesn't want scrubs on the job, and more than once I've been the landlord trying to get rid of a Pacific Heights nightmare in one my units. But today was a cool day.  Today my little girl came up to me at the birthday party where I was dressed liked Batman, she recognized me immediatley, and said, "Hey, Dad," before she gave me a sweet smoochie.  Today, I was Batman and it was pretty great.        

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