My good friend (and loyal Inanities reader) David Speck is out in Atlanta visiting me and Peggy for a few days before he begins a Yamaha corporate video shooting south of the city. We were headed out to my local AMC to see 16 Blocks when we stopped at a red light. In my peripheral vision I spotted a dog in an SUV to our left, a mutt by the looks of it, with its head sticking out the window, enjoying the temperate sunny weather. I looked back to the light: still red. Then I realized the dog was wrong somehow. I looked back at it and saw something I've never seen before.
The dog was wearing sunglasses.
It wasn't wearing sunglasses in the same way we're all used to: a regular pair of our own, made for humans, placed on the dog's face for a joke or a photo op, usually staying in place for 5 seconds tops before the dog manages to shake them off. This dog was wearing full-on Made For Dogs sunglasses. Much, if not exactly like the sunglasses pictured. They were strapped on tight, but not too tight, and the dog seemed content and unencumbered by them. If a dog could be said to wear sunglasses naturally, this dog was doing so. I watched with eyes a-goggled, mouth agape, not sure what to think. "What could the purpose of those possibly be?" I asked. Beside me, David was busily trying to cycle through menu options on his elaborate PDA-Phone thing to get to the camera option, but by then the car carrying the too-cool-for-school pooch was too far away for a decent camera phone picture. The trend-setting dog got away, his coolness escaping with him undocumented.
Does anyone know what the hell these things could be for? Are these doggy sunglasses what I think they are, being just another needless pet accessory inflicted on animals who'd be better than fine without them? Or is this the result of some obscure study that says dog's eyes need protection from the sun as much as human eyes? I don't know, but this was a first for me, and I thought I'd share that with you folks. Has anyone seen this strange phenomenon before?
Anyway, 16 Blocks was very good. Speck liked it too. Well-acted, well-directed (surprisingly), and it did a bunch of very creative, admirable things within the constraints of the genre that worked very well. Bruce Willis does a great turn as an old used-up dirty cop trying to do the right thing for once, David Morse is fantastic as usual playing the heavy, and Mos Def is, well, kind of annoying with the voice he affects for the role, but he's clearly not another rapper trying to be an actor. He can act. One of the best things the screenwriter accomplished was making what appears at first to be a fairly run-of-the-mill cop thriller into something unpredictable and surprising. 16 Blocks was a great couple of hours and well worth a weekend matinee. If box office receipts signified quality, 16 Blocks would have the number one film this past weekend.