The Tumblr void
It has been said that posting to Tumblr is like posting into a void. Unlike most social media websites, Tumblr instates a somewhat impersonal disconnect between posters and their followers, a certain lack of flowing dialogue. This sense of disconnect can make blogs seem cold to their followers, and it can make the owners of those blogs forget that they rely on and are responsible to a vast number of people. As Still Eating Oranges nears 1,000 followers (five remain as of this writing), we would like to explain how much we appreciate those of you who have chosen to stay with us.
Because we run a very formal blog on an impersonal site, the amount of attention that we pay to our readers has never been obvious. Let it be made clear: we notice. We see every new note and follower. We watch new followers become returning fans; we recognize the people who have stuck around since our earliest days. High-fives are exchanged when we see a note from one of our regulars—or from an old follower who has been silent for months. To all of our readers, quiet and vocal alike: we appreciate you and we thank you. We hope that our posts will continue to entertain you in the months ahead.
Still Eating Oranges
Three went forward: the distant man, the man on the cup and Animal Boy. The man on the cup scraped down the sidewalk to catch the distant man, falling behind on rough patches, closing in on flats. His cup was green and small plastic but a good vehicle. Between the parked cars and in the street nearby roamed Animal Boy, small and kind but silent, friend of the man on the cup.
But the distant man turned a corner and left. Animal Boy disappeared, too. The man on the cup was frantic: Animal Boy! Animal Boy! But he couldn’t find him. He scraped, retracing his path, checking between cars. Everyone was gone. He started to scrape home, slowly. But Animal Boy came back.
Still Eating Oranges
When children play with their toys, they create stories. Nonsensical scenarios arise and vanish unpredictably. Flung between these scenarios are characters with strange names and, based on appearances, incongruous personalities. All of this magic was somehow captured by Belgian filmmakers Stéphane Aubier and Vincent Patar in A Town Called Panic (2009), one of the most inspired animated films out of Europe in the last decade.
Aubier and Patar are getting press at the moment for their Oscar-nominated Ernest & Celestine, which looks to be a beautiful, touching work of cel animation. A Town Called Panic bears no resemblance. It is a breathlessly ludicrous film, animated in crude stop-motion with plastic toys. Yet, as one watches Aubier’s and Patar’s imaginings careen dementedly across the screen, it is difficult not to laugh.
The film stars a horse figurine named Horse, along with his friends Cowboy and Indian—cowboy and Native American figurines, respectively. Horse signs up for music lessons to get closer to a local teacher, Madame Longrée; but, after Cowboy and Indian order 50 million bricks in a botched surprise for Horse’s birthday, something else happens. Interested readers may find the film embedded after the break.