Sometimes on Gator Clause you get more than you asked for...
GAINESVILLE -- In case you didn't know this already, Gator Clause oftentimes doesn't limit itself to writing about football. This is one of those times.
After stopping by The Swamp last night for Urban's recruiting emporium (Friday Night Lights), I went to the movies over on Archer road, watched The Dark Knight and drank Cherry Coke. Scroll down if all you want to do is read about Friday Night Lights. Keep reading if you're interested in my thoughts on the movie. I'm not going to write much about it (because I'm no Rene Rodriguez) but here are a few thoughts you might not have read anywhere else.
5. There's a reason why we love Batman. He's human and we can relate. He loves, he hates, he errs and he suffers. People understand the painful feeling of simply being overwhelmed with the problems of the day and that's just one reason why The Dark Knight is such a powerful film. This superhero is flawed just like you and me. Good writing -- in any form -- is hidden in the details. Most people can't relate to a billionaire vigilante but most people can relate to the fear of getting bitten by a dog, losing a loved one and not being liked.
4. The Dark Knight is a story about selflessness and choices. Batman must choose between what's best for Gotham (saving Gotham's District Attorney) or what's best for Batman (saving the girl he loves). Gotham's citizens and convicts must choose between saving themselves or putting the fate of their lives into the hands of total strangers. Rachel Dawes must choose between her promise to Batman or marrying Harvey Dent. And then there's the Joker, who makes no choices. He just does. The polarization of these two ideas (hero and villain/good and bad/human consciousness and animalistic savagery) manifests itself in the form of another character, Dent, who falls and becomes Two Face, a villain who lost everything (His girl, his good looks, his will and then his mind and conscience). The random flip of a coin becomes his moral guide.
3. Did anyone other than me whisper, "That's my bike, punk." just before Zeus delivers his only line of the movie?
2. The Joker was the star of this movie. He was more than a villain. He was pure chaos. There was no motivation behind his evil other than the motivation to be evil. He destroyed order without reason. No one even knows what drove the Joker to madness. It didn't matter. That's why he made up those elaborate stories about his facial scars. Most people are driven to evil because of a dark past or daddy issues. Not the Joker. Nothing created this, he explained to the audience. I just am. Again, this movie was well written.
1. The movie left us with two metaphors. Joker was literally left hanging. Was this a nod to Heath Ledger's untimely death? The second metaphor was the white knight/dark knight image of Batman and Dent lying side by side. The Dark Knight gets up and keeps running. You've got to be a little bad to do a lot of good.
DID YOU KNOW? The actress who played Rachel Dawes in Dark Knight (Maggie Gyllenhaal) is the niece of Anders Gyllenhaal, editor of The Miami Herald.
Feel free, folks, to leave your own thoughts on the movie. Now for my take on Friday Night Lights...
OK, let's first get one thing straight. I'm not here to write about all the recruits that were at Friday Night Lights. That's for the weirdoes over at Rivals.com and Scout.com. It's one thing that Urban and his staff want to get a jump on the classes of 2010 and 2011 but it's quite another thing if you think I'm going to write about how some juniors and sophomores in high school performed at a summer camp. No one spit up on their bibs or shoulder pads. There, enough said.
My official report:
There were about 150 high school kids. According to a couple parents, they were invited to this camp by UF's coaching staff in the form of a mailed letter. The price of admission was $35. The speakers inside The Swamp pumped trendy bubble gum hip-hop into everyone's ear canals within a 10-mile radius. (I really hate this new hip-hop. What happened to good rap?) I chatted it up with a couple parents from South Florida who shelled out major bread at the gas pump just to be there.
From Broward, I'll highlight the kids from Deerfield Beach who made the trip. Senior quarterback Denard Robinson looked pretty good. He's got a good arm and can scramble. I spoke with Merilyn Strawbridge, the mother of Deerfield Beach junior running back Cassius McDowell for about 20 minutes. The Bucks are pretty excited about the combination of Robinson and McDowell in the backfield this season. I'm pretty sure Florida's coaching staff will be at some games. Robinson and McDowell are both speedsters. They anchored Deerfield Beach's state championship 4x100 relay.
From Miami-Dade, I spoke with the father of Miami Northwestern junior slot receiver/running back Corvin Lamb. Lamb (5-10, 190 pounds) apparently ran one of the fastest 40-yard dash times of the camp. Here's an interesting story about Lamb. He played at Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas his freshman season and guess who gave him a ride to school every day? None other than the Gators' starting free safety Major Wright. (Now that's inside information you won't read anywhere else.) Pretty sure that means Lamb will take a close look at the Gators next season.
Speaking of Major Wright and St. Thomas Aquinas, I'll finish up this blog with a nice picture I took last night of former Lakeland standout Chris Rainey, who beat Wright's St. Thomas Raiders three straight times in the 5A state championship game. I'm pretty sure Major will never be borrowing this shirt from Rainey. (Rainey has put on some muscle, by the way. He's looking pretty good.)
Oh, one more thing. I spoke with Urban's wife Shelley Meyer on Friday night and asked her about this spinning class I've been hearing about. Meyer teaches a spin class at Gainesville Health & Fitness and guess what? That's right, I'm going to take the class and see if I can hang. Check back on Tuesday or Wednesday for details. Check back tomorrow for my first podcast of the football season. I'll have a top 10 list from the FSWA college football media days, talk about the football team's worst dresser (Will Hill) and also preview what's on the agenda for next week.