The Journal of Noah

While the fabled Ark of Noah itself has yet to be found, pilgrims venturing to its alleged crash site have returned with the tattered remains of what appear to be the feverish rantings of a 600-year old man dating back to roughly 2500 B.C.

What follows is a rough translation of the original Aramaic script…

Day #1

I have done the Lord’s bidding. I have spent the past 120 years of my life building the divine vessel. I have herded all of His earthly creatures onto this ark, two-by-two. (And that was no small chore with the lions eating so many of the lamb.)

Now, the rain pours down in torrents. Let it wash away the sin of this wayward world, and let this vessel sail forth as a seaworthy shrine to God’s might and wrath.

May He have mercy on those that perish in this great flood.

Day #7

Seven days now, and still the rain comes and the water rises.

I must admit, I thought the mighty Lord would rest on the seventh day.

After all, it took him only six days to create the earth. And it’s been at least two days since I saw the last heathen clinging to a treetop before being washed away.

Hearing their wails and screams as they drowned was… disturbing. More than a few tried desperately to cling to our boat before sinking into the abyss or being taken away by sharks.

It was a gruesome display, indeed. But it is God’s will, and who am I to question it?

I am but a humble servant in His divine plan. And so I say, let the rain pour, mighty God, as I continue to pray for your mercy, and call upon your Heavenly blessings.

Day #12

The rocking… I definitely underestimated the rocking that would accompany the Lord’s mighty wrath.

Perhaps, as God’s anointed messenger and prophet, I half-expected to be spared the sea sickness, but alas…

Then again, the rocking probably wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for the smell. The animals have gotten sick, as well, of course – many of them not accustom to the ocean. (One died, I regret to say. It appears the world has lost the Orangtapus.)

Given that, and the animals’ natural impulse to defecate, it didn’t take long for the hull of the ship to fill with the most Hellish stench.

I dare not venture above deck as God continues to pour rain down from the Heavens. The ark, crude as it is, tumbles violently though the sea of the damned. And I fear being washed overboard – or at the very least, drenched with rain.

This is my only pair of clothes…

And yet, below deck, the hull reeks with the stench of vomit and droppings – both of the animals, and I’m embarrassed to say, my own person.

Still, I thank God that he’s spared me… And that I’ve run out of food to purge from my stomach.

Day #14

Two full weeks, now.

The earth has been properly flooded, yet the rain pours still – God’s fury assailing us from the sky.

I’m quite sure most of the sinners have drowned by this point, even those that scaled the mountains.

Again, I make this point not to question, but merely to observe.

Surely, God is the greatest of all possible planners. This must have been the most efficient and humane way – if not the only way – to purge the earth of its blasphemous human scum.

Day #20

I do not know how long this journey will last, but I trust His infallible presence watches over me… from His throne… conveniently located in the sky… in the Kingdom of Heaven… where it doesn’t rain… ever…

Day #25

Lacking vitamins C and D, I’ve acquired scurvy…

Day #26


Day #27


Day #30

This trial has been so long and so great.

My only solace is knowing that it will never happen again.

Never again will animals – much less humans – be crowded onto a ship, separated from their homeland on a vast ocean voyage, and made to lie, get sick and even die in their own waste.

No just and merciful God would EVER allow such a thing.

Day #35

[Editor’s Note: Here, what appear to be stick figures are drawn: One in which a man has hung himself from the bow of a poorly constructed rectangular ship… Another in which a hand protrudes down from a cloud giving the finger… Still another shows a large bearded man urinating onto a globe… The remainder, I’m afraid, are too crude to describe…]

Day #41

It’s over! It’s over! Jubilee! I cannot wait to return home, to dry land, farming and a flock.

Praise the Lord! Praise Him!

I knew the Lord Almighty would see me through this tribulation.

Blessed are you Lord! Blessed am I Noah! Blessed are His creatures (except for the Orangtapus)!

Day #42

…. The water appears to be receding rather slowly…

Netflix Instant Classic: Out of the Furnace

Genre: Gritty Thriller

What’s it about? Hill people literally duking it out for money and their lives.

Who’s in it? Christian Bale, Woody Harrelson, Willem Defoe, Casey Affleck, and Forest Whitaker

You’ll like it if… You like movies like Winter’s Bone and A History of Violence. (If those two movies had a baby it would be Out of the Furnace.)

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before…

Big Brother flies straight. He’s a wise, hard worker who follows in his father’s footsteps.

Little Brother is a wild child. Determined to break the mold – and a tradition of perceived failure – he desperately tries to punch is way out of poverty and into a better life.

But instead of finding fortune, Little Brother is confronted with the moral destitution that comes with his own poor life choices. He gets in over his head and Big Brother has to come bail him out… If it’s not too late, that is.

Either way, things are bound to get messy.

It’s one of Hollywood’s favorite formulas and it is very much at work in “Out of the Furnace.”

Of course, I wouldn’t be reviewing this movie if it didn’t do a damn good job. (It’s worth noting Out of the Furnace was produced by Ridley Scott and Leonardo DiCaprio, which accounts for the star power and strong direction.)

Just look at the cast. It’s fucking loaded.

And in addition to being well-acted, it’s well shot.

Set in primarily in Pennsyltucky, we also get a look at New Jersey’s Ramapo Mountains. Both locations are desolate.  The two regions are portrayed as being more than just poor areas – they’re lawless lands governed by the insular silence of their close-knit  and clannish townsfolk.

In fact, some of the locals took exception to being portrayed as drug-addled “inbreds,” even going so far as to file suit against the filmmakers.

It’s actually fitting that the movie should prove so contentious, because there’s a lot of fighting onscreen, as well.

Russell Baze (Big Brother) is fighting to walk the line. He’s a diligent worker fighting to keep his head up in a dying steel town.  He fights his emotions.  He fights the impulse to drink. And most of all, he fights for his family, especially his little brother, Rodney.

Sometimes he wins sometimes he loses.  But the struggle, as the kids say, is real.

Rodney fights, too. He’s an Army man that gets deployed overseas to fight Iraqis. When he gets back home he fights the memories. He also fights people.

That is, Rodney participates in a bare-knuckle boxing ring on behalf of the local sleaze merchant.

And, as I said, things get messy.

I’m not going to go into anymore detail regarding the plot, because one of this movie’s strengths is that it keeps things interesting, even while clinging to a tired form.

The one twist I do feel comfortable revealing, however, is that it’s Forest Whitaker who usurps the infamous “Batman voice” from Christian Bale.

That, and maybe one other thing…

I didn’t understand the final shot of the film – the very, very end. So I looked it up and found an explanation here [SPOILER ALERT, obviously]. So if you do watch it, and you’re confused like I was, there’s your answer.

Here’s the trailer…