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Monday, December 9, 2002
By Paul Ford
Which I watched on the bus.
I was on my way back to New York from Cambridge, and the Fung Wah bus showed another Hong Kong action film: incredible violence, mysterious women, and motorcycles everywhere. I had my laptop out, working on some project as the bus hopped up and down, and I began to record the dialogue of the film. I couldn't tell the characters apart, save that one had a red helmet and another had a pegleg.
“How can a peg fight? Go away busybody.”
“Good, tonight's race will be fun.”
“What have you put on your face? Hair lotion.”
The peglegged man dragged himself across some tarmac, in slow motion.
A motorcycle leapt into the air like a puppy. Hundreds, dozens of motorcycles. All right! Concerned, helmeted faces. Even more motorcycles, now.
“The number of motorcycles is outstanding.”
“I'm still a fast racer!”
The peglegged man will race. He leapt on a motorcycle. Now the riders strike each other with sticks.
“Go home, scum.”
“How good is or bad?”
“Bump me if you dare.”
A leap, a fall, a crash. A dozen motorcycles have been totaled. Pain, shouts. Now we enter the valley of the exclamation marks:
“This ass is pretty last!”
“Run everyone run!”
“Frank! Don't give up!”
Then the peglegged guy looked happy, but someone else was crippled, and someone with evil facial hair beheaded. A happy ending, as the bus rolled into the Bronx.