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August 25, 2010

"The New Man in Charge"

Let's talk about LOST!  The New Man in Charge.

Here are my notes  about the long awaited 12 minute epilogue; which I will write up in the vein of the Missing Pieces Mobisodes. Remember to click the pics because they're posted here for a reason.
video
Epilogue "The New Man in Charge"

Orote Peninsula, Guam: Dharma Logistics Warehouse
                                                      THE PRESENT   {uh, as in "gift"}
Two Dharma men {Provisions} are working in the warehouse.   We get a shot of the printing press label maker with  its "backwards/mirror image" plate.
Glen- "How soon do you get those peas labeled?"
Hector-"I don't know. Couple hours."    {He hand cranks and hand cuts the labels.}
Glen- "Hurry it up, man. I already got the rest of the palette loaded."
Hector- "I don't know why you're always in such a hurry, man."  {The fucking White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland!}
Glen- "That's why. We're gonna miss our launch window. I don't wanna be up half a night loading damn boxes."
Ben- "Excuse me."   {Ben wears an Island shirt under his blazer.}
Glen- "Who the hell are you? How'd you get in here?"
Ben- "My name is Benjamin Linus. I'm from the Home Office."
Hector- "Nobody from the Home Office has ever come out here."
Ben- "There's a new man in charge, he sent me."
Glen- "Sent you to do what?"
Ben- "Tie up a few loose ends. Your services are no longer required, gentlemen. Closing this place down. So, you're free to go."
Hector- "But we've been loading the palettes under the drones for like...20 years now."
Glen- "What are we supposed to do?"
Ben- "This is your severance pay. I'd say you can do pretty much anything you want." {Ben hands them envelopes of American cash in hundreds}
Glen- "So, work with the Dharma Initiative?"
Ben- "The Dharma Initiative hasn't existed in almost 20 years."
Hector- "That's not true. We still get a teletype before every drop."
Ben- "It's automated. Comes from the Lamppost station in L.A.. There hasn't been a person posted there since you two started. That's why the man in charge has me going around closing up shop."
Glen- "Lamppost station?"
Ben- "I've already said more than I should've. Before you leave, please lock the doors, turn out the lights."
Hector- "Wait. You can't just walk out of here. We deserve answers!"
Ben- "All right. Before I go I'll let you each ask a question. But just one. So, make it count."
Glen - "Where have we been sending these palettes? Where are they dropped?"
Ben- "An Island."
Glen- "How's that possible? The coordinates are different every time."
Ben- "The Island moves."
Glen- "How does the Island..."
Ben- "Uh-uh! One question. Your turn." {Technically Glen got to ask three.}
Hector- "We're on Guam. So this Island is somewhere in the tropics, right? So explain this. Polar bear biscuits. How is there a polar bear on a tropical island?"
Ben- "Polar bears, actually. Plural. You guys have a DVD player?"
Ben- "So we watch it together and then we all leave. Is that a deal?"
Hector- "Deal."
Glen- "Deal."
Ben- "Sorry about the quality. It's a transfer from an old Betamax." {Ben pockets a Dharma granola bar and eats a Dharma granola bar}

The film/dvd begins...{Be warned! This video is riddled with skips, warps, glitches, and missing bits.}
1 of 6
Dr. Pierre Chang {Wearing a Swan station logo medical/lab white jacket}-  
"Hello, I am Dr. Pierre Chang. And this is the orientation video for station one of the Dharma Initiative, the Hydra.  For purposes of security, please do not divulge my name to any outside parties. I wouldn't want to have to resort to using an alias in the future.   The chief purpose of this station is to conduct biological and behavioral research on various animal, bird and marine subjects. {6 caged rabbits}  Here are some of the duties you may be asked to perform... {A crazy voice says "Hurley. Hurley"} ...Genetic alteration.  These fascinating hybrids, or "hy-birds" as we call them, will be released and monitored to see how they adapt to the unique properties of the island... successful advanced studies in larger mammals.  Ursus maritimus, or polar bears, possess a keen sense of memory and adaptability.  These traits make them ideal candidates for electromagnetic studies that will be conducted at a secondary site where their comfort in cold temp... It's important when dealing with the bears that you do not show affection or become attached in any way.  Also, do not underestimate their intelligence and cunning. These rules must always be followed. I repeat, the bears are not your friends.  Rewarding the bear with a fish biscuit, once it has successfully performed a complex puzzle. After the training is completed, you will tranquilize the bear. Affix this tracking device around the subject's neck.  At which point it will be transported to the Orchid station for the next phase of researchRemember, be sure to confirm that the female bears have not been impregnated before transport, as the electromagnetic levels at the Orchid have an extremely harmful effect on early term gestation.   As you've already learned, we do animal research here at Hydra.  Unfortunately, one must consider the most dangerous animal of all... humans.  And so, there is another more secluded test site, where we are conducting significantly more sensitive work. The island's indigenous population, some of you may have heard them referred to as "Hostiles", are acquired on the main island, sedated and brought here, to Room 23. {A "dummy/mannequin" is shown strapped in, in place of a person.}   Because the subjects are unwilling participants, security personnel should always be present during these sessions. Under no circumstances are you to engage subjects in conversation.  The purpose of these interrogations is to better understand the Hostiles' way of life, their origins, and particularly their worship of an island deity they refer to as "Jacob".    After the research team has concluded their tests, inject this into the back of the subject's neck.   Then place these goggles over his or her eyes. Hitting this switch will commence the visualization while the drugs take effect{The lights turn off, loud techno music plays while the video shows images and quotes} The dream-like quality of the film combined with the cutting edge pharmaceuticals will create an amnesia of sorts.  Any memory of his or her interrogation will be effectively wiped clean.   While these interrogative measures may seem extreme, rest assured, they are vital...to temporary truce with the Hostiles is not violated.  This concludes your orientation of the Hydra station. Good luck and remember do not discuss the nature of these experiments with other members of the Initiative.  
Enjoy your time here on Hydra Island. Namaste and good l..." 
The two men are stunned.

Hector- "I think we're gonna need to see that again."
Ben-"Sorry, we're out of time." {Ben collects his DVD}
Hector- "What did they do to those bears? And what the hell's a 'Hostile?"
Ben-"Goodbye, gentlemen. I have another call to make. Namaste."  {There is an obvious buzzing of a fly/bug}

SANTA ROSA MENTAL HEALTH INSTITUTE
Ben is wearing the same clothes as he wore to the warehouse in "Guam".
Ben- "Hello, I'm here to see Keith Johnson."
Nurse Susie Lazenby- "Are you on his visitor's list?"
Ben- "No. But I'm sure if you give him this note, he'll want to see me."


Walt, a kid in a grownup mental institute,  plays Connect Four solo in the game/rec room.
{The same familiar artwork and colorful cutouts decorate the room}
Ben- "Hello, Walt." {He doesn't call him Keith}
Walt-" What are you doing here?"
Ben- "Like my note said, a friend of yours sent me."
Walt- "I don't have any friends."
Ben- "We all have friends. Even me."
Walt- "You here to kidnap me again?"
Ben- "I'm genuinely sorry about that. But what's done is done. I can't change the past. I can only take responsibility for it. Walt, I understand what you've had to go through. I know the difficulties you've had pretending to be someone you're not.   {Walt takes off the legs of the Connect Four grid} Walt, I'm here to help you."
Walt- "Why?"
Ben- "Because you're special. And I bet nobody's told you that in a very long time."
Walt- "What good does that do me?"
Ben- "We need you. You have work to do. Starting with helping your father."
Walt- "My father's dead."
Ben- "Doesn't mean you can't help him. Will you go with us, Walt?"    {Ben places a wrapped DI granola bar on top of the red game pieces. Walt picks it up.}

Outside the building at night, Ben is encouraging cautious and unsure Walt as they walk through the picnic area and get into a blue Dharma van.
Ben-"Come on, it's OK. You ride shotgun."
Hurley-"Dude."
Walt- "Hurley."
Hurley- "It's great to see you, Walt."  {Jacob music plays}
Walt- "I kept hoping one day somebody would come back for me. They said I was crazy."
Hurley-"You're not crazy, dude. Not even close. You just need to get back to the island, that's all. It's where you belong. It's where you've always belonged."
Walt- "Why?"
Hurley- "I wanna talk to you about a job. All right, Ben, let's get out of here. It's time for us all to go home."
Ben starts the van and they drive away.
Things to Note...Questions to ask...
* Everything blurs together!  "This Place"-the "Island"-Guam-Santa Rosa-On "Island and off "Island", etc.
* Ben and Hurley travel to and from the "Island".   If you have to be sedated to "transport" to the "Island" then who sedates and wakes the other?!! lol
* The {"Hy"- "high"} bird is in a covered darkened cage...SLEEPINGDrugs! Altered State of Consciousness!
* Confined. Alone. Solitary. Shutoff. Shutdown
* The Hydra Station is number 1; the Orchid Station is next step of the research.
* Computers, Programs, Drones, Machines. {"acting" on behalf of a human.}
* Drugs-High (hy), Hallucinogens, Sedatives, Tranquilize, Injections, Hypnosis, Brainwashing.
* Mind games, manipulation.
* GAME. Rules.
* Dream Dreamlike
* Mental health. Feeling alone. Lost. Santa Rosa.
* Tabula Rasa
* The Lamppost station is automated; hasn't had a person there in 20 years and The Hydra video shows a dummy/mannequin in place of a human
* What is real and what is not real?
* The "date" on the printout is not a real date.
* The "Island" is a place of learning.  An Institute is also known as a place of learning.
* Faraday's rat maze
* Tests. Experiments.
* Challenges
* Walt's name is Keith Johnson.
* Walt is presented with a "job".
* Walt is not 20 years old and we just learned the DI hasn't existed in almost 20 years.
* What does "dead" really mean?
* Walt is wearing a zip up hoodie like Michael and Hugo wore in Everybody Loves Hugo
* You need to consume a Dharma food product to be "transported" to the "Island".  The use of sedative and/or hallucinogen is what brings you to the "Island"
* The Island moves...is the "Island" really a ship?
* The handle on the door to Room 23 is like one that is on a refrigerated room or meat locker.
* Candle, Halliwax, Wickmund all represent "light".
* The Lamppost's "church" ends up being the place where Jack, Christian and friends are embraced by the warm bright "light".  The "light" lives in all of our hearts and the heart of the "Island".  Ah, lovely metaphors at work.
* The Dharma Initiative info from the film/dvd brings us back to the information we learned in the first ARG "The LOST Experience". 
 - I also want to provide you with The Psychology test video from The LOST Experience from back in June of 2006.
video

Vocabulary and Research...
* Logistics-word comes from "Pertaining to logic"

* Hydra- Also means a persistent or many-sided problem that presents new obstacles as soon as one aspect is solved.

* Drone-
   1). A Bee, a male wasp, a male ant.  (BUG)
   2). An abbreviation referring to one of two psychoactive drugs (Mephedrone "Methoxymethcathinone"), commonly known as methedrone

* Hostile-  opposed in feeling, action, or character.
   2). characterized by antagonism
   3). angry, aggressive, not warm, unfriendly or hospitable
   4). enemy
   5). alien

* Bear- carry, convey, transport, ferry, fetch, move,pack, take, transfer
  - Mental state, Endure,
  -Refuse to throw away,
  -Give birth.
  -Bare- To uncover, reveal or expose.

* Peas are contained in a pod.
* Indigenous-inherent; feelings indigenous to human beings.



What the "hex" going on?!  Well, people, things and places are not what you think...Ha, imagine that.

First...For those of you who feel disappointed that we didn't get a look at life on the "Island" under its new management...We did!!  Because it's all "the Island". 
They are NEVER out of the confines of the "ISLAND" or whatever the "Island" really is. We've all been down the rabbit hole which just happens to be over the rainbow in OZ.

It is obvious (and not all in my head) events and places we've seen in the six years happened within the "confines" of the "Island" adventure.  It was shown all over this 12 minute epilogue.
This also connects my Wizard of Oz-Alice in Wonderland idea...what we saw happened in a sleep state and/or altered state of consciousness where things are blurred together. 

This Zen Buddhism based journey involves altered states of consciousness and levels of consciousness (sleep state), and states of existence/being along the path.  The "Island's" role in this may also be aided with the addition of mediation, sedation, drugs, hypnosis, and/or even a computerized merged reality experience...the matrix.

If everything is really occurring and blurred within the confines of a specific space, one with distinct boundaries, then we still need to wonder...where this place is.   Is it all completely in the mind, consciousness/subconscious {with the use of drugs and or meditation aided by machine/computer}
or is it literally on an island or in a building or a prison, or are they on a ship in confined pods?  Is it possible that this adventure can happen all while you're in the comforts of your own home?

Let's look at the first part of what we're shown:
The "cutting edge" out of existence Dharma Initiative has only two clueless dudes in "Guam", hand cranking labels and packing pallets on autopilot (Automated) for 20 years! They don't even know about the Lamppost station. Really?!   These people are literally "trapped in a fucking box"!
Not only are we being shown the DI surviving under an auto-piloted front, but we're also seeing more people who are metaphorically "stuck" and oblivious that there is a whole entire world out there that they could and should be living in.  These two men are living in a redundant cycle with no comprehension of how to do it any other way.
Interestingly Ben, who just turned Glen and Hector's lives upside down,  limits the men's questions and is obviously restricting them from learning more even though they are curious.  Ben's entire demeanor is very mysterious and cunning and kind of suspicious.
Walt, a child who is residing at a mental institution for adults {I've only ever seen adults there}, is called upon by Ben via Hurley.    Hurley, Jacob-like, wants to talk to Walt about a "job" but also refers to Walt belonging on the island and also feeling positively that it's time to get out of there and that it's time for all of them to go home.  Is it just Walt's turn to watch the "Island" or is he "indigenous/hostiles" to the "Island"  {Ahem, as Candle mentions "there are"} and is he just being returned?   And I must ask what Walt's "special" role on the "Island is; although now we see he must become the new man in charge.  Is his role to take the place of the Jacob or MIB identity?   {John was "special" and connected with Smokey.}   Hurley states it's time for "all" of them to go home, so if the "Island" and the outside world are not really of the same space is Hurley gathering up all the natives to return them to the "Island" as well, or are they just all ready to go home?  Where is home?   It must be somewhere over the rainbow.

Are we still the victims of a Long Con?   Well, there continues to be a game element and the story still reeks of "Smoke and Mirrors", magic, illusion and lots of razzle freakin' dazzle.

The still seemingly vague and inconclusive {glitchy} information we received from the Hydra orientation film connects many things we learned in the first ARG, The LOST Experience.  Do I disregard any of that valuable time consuming researched shit load of information I learned with playing that game?  Nope.  Because we know and accept this story is multi layered.  Nevertheless, I found this Hydra Orientation film to be filled with a plethora of insight and answers.

We have been fed hints to breeding and "using" the natives of the "Island" all of these years along with the path to enlightenment part of the story.   Keep in mind the story is a wonderfully huge metaphor being narrated via all the puzzling problems and imagery we see on and with the "Island".    So the information Candle gives us can be perceived as him talking about Jack, John and the rest of the  people on the "Island" and not "bears" and "birds". 

But who knows, maybe Walt is a hybrid {or really  a "hy" bird, as in they're all "high", again as Candle outright states},  maybe they all are.   Or they're all Hostiles, native to the "Island" and they're the ones being broken down and reprogrammed. 

Marvin Candle's drivel about the viewer not telling anyone his name lest he be reduced to needing an alias is total nonsense, but his statement, "The Hostiles are acquired on the main island, sedated and brought here" is not.
Think about it...Are we really talking about "hostiles", as in natives to an actual island or are we really talking metaphorically about angry and lost people?  Have we witnessed the literal kidnapping of natives to an island and their being used as test subjects by the Dharma Initiative or about is it about a lost person who can't bear his burden any longer and is in need of a life changing journey to put him in the right light so he can live the life he is meant to live.  That may be a form of therapy or rehabilitation.   It very well may be that it is a combination of some of these clues.
We can watch the orientation footage literally, accepting the information Candle is telling the viewer as facts regarding the D.I. and their "programs".   And you can watch it understanding the subliminal and metaphoric connections to Jack, John, Hurley and the rest of the Castaways while ignoring the bits about the DI and their programs.  Of course you can also watch it while mastering how all of those factors fit and work together.

The visual of the white rabbits in the orientation video again for  me, correlates to a trip down the rabbit hole and not to some gobbledygook Marvin Candle's video is trying to distract us with. 

Hurley, the new man in charge, seems to be literally moving stuck people forward; liberating them.
Bah! Maybe he's just pushing the clueless people out.

"This Place"...the "Island" is a place of learning.  It doesn't matter if  you think it's run by a bunch of crackpot scientists, doctors, inventors, the military, actors, gamers or it's a real island that you can go on a journey to find yourself,  you're purpose there is not only to be challenged and tested, but you will learn, heal and be free and reborn.   It is part of the journey to enlightenment.

I do want to reflect on a moment we spent with Hurley and his adventure on the "Island" with his being confused on whether "Island" events are real or part of his subconscious.  We're given so much important information from his friend, Dave.  Dave hints to things being faked.   But more importantly is the dialogue Dave has about the "need to wake up" Hugo.
Dave tries to get Hurley to fall back off the cliff, not so he can kill himself but so it will "wake" him up.   Hugo perceives the going over the cliff as an act of physical death but what it really represents is a metaphoric "death", an ending and a means to bring you back to life.  It is very Zen.

So with this "Big Finale" it's time for us all to go home.   After all, Home is where your Heart is.  
It is also where you end up after you run all the bases on the field, or you work your way all the way around the game board indicating the completion of the game...back to home.

Now, if you're ready and only if and when you're really ready...
Come on, do it, I know you want to...Close your eyes, tap your heels together three times and think to yourself...There's no place like...Home.
...And now you can wake up.
At least until your next adventure, that is.

Love to all who are "LOST"™

August 24, 2010

Tranquility Island

Hi Losties!
In honor of it being a very HAPPY LOST DAY because the DVD'S will be in our hands today and we'll start classes again at LOST University, I put together a fun little LOST video.
I have not created a Silly LOST Picture in a while and thought "Why not try a Silly LOST Video?!"
Although it is pretty obvious that I don't know how to edit video and never made one before, I still had fun giving it a try. The one thing I wish was that I had HD quality footage so a few of those clips were clearer.
Anyway...it's all in LOSTASTIC fun! You can see where my mindset is while trying to deal with life without LOST.

I dedicate this video to all of us LOST fans who feel lost without LOST.

Love to all who are "LOST"™

August 18, 2010

"Audibly Lost" The Movie Trailer

Hi Losties!
Here is some news for you...
Film maker Alex Castex-Porter, decided to make a movie about LOST podcasters, titled “Audibly Lost” The Movie.   It is inspired by his interactions with LOST fans.

“Audibly Lost” The Movie introduces viewers to the community of LOST podcasters who on a weekly basis discuss the mind boggling events of the hit TV show LOST.
The documentary explores the stories of these devoted and hardcore LOST podcasters, why they podcast about LOST and why each of these LOST podcasts have thousands of listeners.
 
Quote from Alex's web site: "Coming from all parts of the United States, big cities, suburbs and small towns, these podcasters discuss the “whys” and “why not's,” their reactions to the end of LOST, the emotional ups and downs of podcasting, and what it all means for them.  They show a side of themselves that their listeners may have never seen or heard."

I feel very honored that Alex came all the way down to sunny and hot South Florida and spent some time talking about LOST with me.
We had a total blast!  Thank you, Alex.

Here is the movie trailer!  I can't wait to see the LOSTNESS in its entirety!

"Audibly Lost" The Movie Trailer from Audibly Lost on Vimeo.

Here is just a few of the awesome LOST podcasters you'll get to see:


Kris White of the official abc.com LOST Podcast
Amy (Nancy Drew), Curt and Dan of The Black Rock Podcast
Big-O of The Cranky Fanatic Podcast
Ralph  of The Dharmalars.
Heath
Anna and Denise of Jacob's Cabin Podcast
Jay and Jack of The Jay and Jack LOST Podcast
Anna and Denise of Jacob's Cabin Podcast
Josh Long/The Joshmeister of The JoshMeister Podcast
Matt and Leslie of Keys to Lost
Josh and Amanda of The Lost Flashbacks Podcast
Evan Agee of The Lost Mystery Podcast
Wayne Henderson of LostCasting with Wayne and Dan
Anil of The ODI LOST Episode Podcast With Danny aka Vozzek69 (of Things I Noticed About LOST)
And Karen Mauro (of Karen's LOST Notebook)

August 12, 2010

"Loop, dude, Loop." Confidence Man, Solitary and Raised by Another.

Hi Losties!
I encourage you to read my original detailed notes for each of the episodes. That is where you may find the clues to very important things that set a thread for all the other episodes and it's really where you'll find the meat of the story. After all, it's all in the details!
So click here for detailed notes on...
Confidence Man
Solitary
Raised by Another.
I hope you find them useful.

The following are the short "Readers Digest" versions for the re-watch.

Confidence Man is not only a wonderful look into Sawyer's "life" but touches on Jack and a few other Castaways.











Question: “How do I know this is real?”
Answer: Uh, you don't!

Here on the sandy shores of depression where the Castaway's condition is that they are carrying extra emotional baggage and they are trying to heal their suffering.
We are brought right into the concept of everything coming back around. Yes, the laws of Karma as well as the "loop" concept.

Sawyer is holding on to deep heartache he suffered in childhood with losing his parents to the cunning ways of a conman. The truth of the letter he clings so tightly to is finally brought to light.
Unfortunately Sawyer becomes the man he was hunting, complete with wooing the married rich lady, Jess, and convincing her and her husband, David to blindly get involved in a shady investment.
His suspicious "mark" David wonders if there is a loophole with this "too good to be true" deal he's getting into with Sawyer.
The con progresses until confident sharpie Sawyer gets a Flash of Conscience when he sees that the couple has an innocent young fair haired son. This seems to hit too close to home for Sawyer so he literally walks out on the transaction.

The "Island" events bring us right back, deep into the rabbit hole when it is revealed Sawyer is reading the book about bunnies; Watership Down. Apparently the book really belongs to Boone. Boone claims that book was in his bag along with Shannon's asthma inhalers, which are conveniently missing and assumed to be in Sawyer's stash of acquired goods.
Sadly Shannon is in the midst of a major asthma attack.

In an effort to retrieve the much needed medicine, Jack, Sayid and Kate take to strong arming Sawyer into giving the sick girl her medicine.  Sawyer goes with the flow of this, and even admits to knowing his torturing at Sayid's hands "has to happen".   So after some deal making with Kate and being tortured by a damn spinal surgeon and a genuine Iraqi, it is revealed Sawyer doesn't have nor ever had the inhalers. This triggers a fight between Sayid and Sawyer, where subsequently Sawyer is stabbed in the bicep.

As Jack is tending to bleeding Sawyer, Sawyer says to Jack, “Let go. I know you want to.”
Sawyer feels Jack has been waiting for this to happen so he can be a hero again, “Cause that’s what you do. Fix everything up all nice.”

It's all in your head!
Hmmm...Yeah, that's what I've been saying!  But I can't help but wonder if it's just a nod to consciousness or is it also a hint to how part of their adventurous "Island" journey is literally happening.

Jack tells suffering Shannon that "It's in your head"; the asthma attack is coupled with anxiety. Jack shows total confidence and "belief" in his task of getting Shannon to breathe through her asthma attack.   It really wasn't a Jedi moment as much as it was a glimpse into not only the power of believing things can happen in this magical and mystical place, but the power to believe in "you".

Charlie playfully convinces Claire she is enjoying creamy peanut butter by playing make-believe with an empty jar and the use of imagination.

Time out!
Sayid feels such shame for what he did that he decides to set off alone and map the "Island".  Kate shows concern for him as she warns him about "what is in the jungle", but Sayid feels there are worse things to fear than what is in the jungle.  That is true.   I feel Sayid fears the deeds he is capable of toward another human, and this is indeed worse than who/what is in the jungle.

Jack has got some major bottled-up emotional issues that seem to keep him on the verge of blowing up. I was unsettled by Dr Jack, a man who took the Hippocratic Oath to never do harm to anyone, actually admits to Kate that killing Sawyer would "feel good".  That is one disturbed physician!  But he is totally hot.
Over the years anytime we had a rabbit or bunny brought into the story regardless of trying to convince us they represent "something else",   I always connected the "rabbit" to the Alice in Wonderland/down the rabbit hole metaphor and not other mumbo jumbo.

Let's not ignore the wonderful title of this episode as it is no doubt a warning to be on the lookout for cons, tricks and razzle freakin dazzle.


Solitary.
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Game on!
Sayid- “This isn’t a game, Nadia.”
Nadia- “Yet you keep playing it, Sayid. Pretending to be something I know you’re not.”

But while we're at it...how about a round of golf!  Yes, the ongoing game hint presents itself yet again.  It's not the first or last time you'll get the hint to playing a game, not by a long shot!

Hurley builds a golf course so the Castaways have something else to do with their time besides sitting around waiting for the next bad thing to happen.  Good call! 
The clue to the Castaway's being involved in a loop, do-over and/or another go-around on the "Island" is again reinforced when Charlie uses and explains the golf term "Mulligan".

AC/DC!
Sayid self imposes his own "time out" or better yet, some alone time. He heads off to think about his previous actions {and to find what he's looking for}, but so he's not totally without a purpose, he will map the "Island".   As he sits on a deserted beach looking over the photographs of a beautiful woman, something sticking out of the sand catches his eye.
Ah, the discovery of the cable that powers the "Island".
Apparently electricity runs from somewhere under the water and right through the jungle to juice up other points of interest on the "Island.  While following the cable into the jungle unfortunately Sayid is snagged by a trap that leaves him injured and hanging from a tree...unconscious.

Sayid wakes up in the hole in the ground that Danielle lives in.  Sayid is strapped down with wires attached to him.  Rousseau's makeshift machine uses battery power and cables to shock/zap Sayid as a means of interrogation.
The soldier who majors in communications interrogation for his army's prisoners is now the prisoner on the receiving end of torturous interrogation.

We're shown that while in the military Sayid was responsible for the woman we see in the photographs while she was his prisoner.  He had feelings for her and now is without her. Rousseau is without her love Robert, her science team and her child. Rousseau tells a tale and we learn a little bit about why she is solo in her rat hole. The lonely lady fears the "Island sickness".
It's important to note that Sayid states Nadia is dead 7 years, with no mention of him being on Oceanic flight 815 on his way to L.A. to go and find her alive. {Remember that for an upcoming episode.}

Sayid fixes Danielle's music box containing a tiny dancing couple.   It was in this episode that I really got a supported sense that there is someone/people involved in orchestrating the "Island" experience.

Class is in session.
Walt is impressed to see Mr. Locke's talents as a "hunter" and woodsman.  He shares with Locke, “I just want to learn how to do what you do.”
Locke and Walt share something very important and I can't help but wonder if Walt will follow in Locke's "Island" footprints.

An important item to note is Michael's comment regarding his role/job "In a previous life". There are other hints to this life and "another life" and/or the next life.  Yeah, that counts as another go-around too.

This episode reinforced the matter of mental and emotional heath.  Here with Sayid there is his need to come to terms with guilt and the deeds he knows he is frighteningly capable of.   This "Island" journey forces you to confront all the things that are contributing to the causes of your own suffering.

The hints and imagery to electricity, energy, power, juice, currents and electromagnetism throughout the story will and do tell us a lot about what goes on with the mysterious "Island". But let's not forget that we always need to keep in mind the word play LOST tends to do with what we're shown. Things will have more than one meaning.

Back to the matter at hand...For Sayid it seems he himself needs to "Admit what you've done and the pain will stop".
Metaphorically for him and the Castaways it is the emotional pain and thoughts they are hanging on to that is keeping them literally trapped.

I will share with you that through the years I have presented a few ideas as far as the actual "Island" experience.  With this episode title it relates to the "Island" residents feeling alone. But I had thoughts on the possibility Jack and the gang are not random visitors to "this place" {of course} and maybe they are prison inmates or mental patients that have been put into this situation as a means of therapy and enlightenment.   Or does the possibility exist that they are "native" to the "Island"?    And then of course I have my thoughts on that they can enter the "Island" journey whenever they want to; possibly with the help of science and technology.
We'll get into more on all of that as we progress.

No matter how it is occurring it is important to remember...there are whispers to be heard on the wind in the jungle, but there's no such thing as monsters. You should only fear the monster that lives inside of you.

Raised by Another.
This is a very important and informative episode!










Alright kiddo, its nap time!
Extremely lucid dreams, sleepwalking, and text book anxiety nightmares are the topic of the day.   Mind you there is a high pitched ring associated with said "dream".
All we hear throughout the episode are things like, “You’re dreaming" or "You were sleepwalking”.
Ahem...does this kind of thing qualify as one of those "happening in your head" types of occurrences?!  Yeah, that's what I thought.
By the way Claire may be a sleepwalker but Jack has been told he's a sleep talker.

Claire experiences a bizarre phenomenon while sleeping alongside of her fellow cave squatters.  Claire is awakened by the faint cry of a baby. When Claire looks down she sees that she is not pregnant.
Well, see the rest for yourself...

Claire wakes up screaming yet she doesn't feel the weird experienced events are a dream or nightmare, but they are very real.   So is the dream visions of future events or past events or memory?
In Claire's dream-like encounter Locke is in the role of the psychic; the psychic in this story plays a direct role in getting Claire to the "Island".   We also hear Locke say “He was your responsibility but you gave him away, Claire. Everyone pays the price now."
This is spoken as if it has already happened and there are consequences for this action.

In "Flash" events Claire is involved with artist Thomas. She learns that she and doubting Thomas are "pregnant".  The dialogue that the two have while taking and reviewing the "pee on a stick" pregnancy test is very important. There is also a clue to a wrong-bad diagnosis; which of course brings me right back to the "on Island" events of Claire noticing she's not pregnant.
Thomas the noble decides the two should give playing house a go.

"Flash" events take an interesting turn when Claire and her friend Rachel visit an Australian psychic, Richard Malkin. At first glance Malkin seems gifted, so much so that he aborts the reading as a means to not share that what he "sees" is blurry.

After a few months of Claire getting settled into domestic bliss, Thomas drops the bomb on her claiming he just can't do it.
Later Malkin seems genuinely concerned about Claire and her situation and even offers a few solutions. Claire makes up her own mind to put the baby up for adoption against Malkin's insistence; he feels Claire and only Claire need to raise this baby.

Make a wish on a falling star.
As pregnant Claire is in the attorney's office signing adoption papers, we learn she has an attachment to the song "Catch a Falling Star".    It is a song she claims her daddy sung to her when she was young.  Keep in mind we also learned in this episode Claire has daddy abandonment issues.
Claire happens to abandon her idea of putting the baby up for adoption only to let Malkin convince her to give the baby to a couple in L.A...  Malkin orchestrates all her arrangements to ensure the plan is brought to fruition.

While in the jungle with Charlie, Claire begins having labor pains but seems to be able to "wish" them away.

Head count!
Hurley decides to start a census.  He feels keeping tabs is a good way to police their "Island" home; "The point is we gotta find out who everyone is.”
It is interesting to see that Hurley mistakes Ethan for Lance, but more importantly to me was his moments spent with Locke at the beach.
Hurley tells Locke he thought it would be a good idea to get everyone’s name and place of residence.
Locke- And who’s checking on you?”
Hurley-Uhhh, me.”
Locke- ”It was a joke.”
John goes on to say, “You already know my name. I lived most of my life in Tustin California.”
Hurley inquires further, “Cool. Reason for travel. The reason you were in Australia.”
John- “I was looking for something.”
Hurley, seemingly baffled by that reason asks if he found it. As John looks up toward the jungle area he says, “No. It found me. Anything else?”
Nope.
So Hurley hurries away and up to someone he already talked to because he wanted to get away that person/Locke. {Interesting, huh.}

Sayid returns back to camp with a warning, "We're not alone".
And Hurley warns Jack the camp has an interloper!

Blurry is bad.
OK, according to Malkin the psychic, when he "sees" things "blurry" that means it's bad.   But there is no doubt that its clear to see on "Island", off "Island" and here with Claire's "real dream-like incident", events all blur together.   This draws a picture for me that the Castaways are never out of the confines of the "Island" experience.
But the metaphor to need to see things clearly is very important.  One of the reasons they are on the "Island" is because they can't see things clearly.

I personally don't believe in Psychics and I feel they fall under the category of conman.  They take advantage and mislead vulnerable, desperate and hopeless people. A Psychic shouldn't be the guide in your destiny.

I'll leave you with this...
Charlie- “It’s not all in her head
Jack- "This place. It can kinda mess with your head a little and maybe make you see things that really aren’t actually there.  Now, I know it feels very real…”

Some overall clues for you to keep in mind:
ROM
Execute
Cable
Power
Hive- A hub or center.
Hive mind- one of several forms of collective consciousness.
Hive is an abstract strategy bug-themed table-top game.
The sounds of mechanical/machines.

As with all the episodes it is important to pay attention to the Flash Whoosh as it doesn't always segue into a "Flash".

Until next time...

Love to all who are "LOST"™