“Finding Ronald” Listed on IMDb!

My four part documentary series “Finding Ronald” is now listed on IMDb!

This feels like a huge milestone to me! I’m exuberant at the moment! If you haven’t seen “Finding Ronald” yet, please consider giving it a watch. Episodes 1-3 are less than 30 minutes long. Episode 4, which is in the final stages of production now, will be a little less than one hour long. Point being, the entire series can be binged on a quiet Saturday afternoon. 😉

Stand by to stand by! –Mad Squid

“Walt’s Reel,” Saved From Deep Storage By Disney Staff, Is The Reason I Got To See Grandpa At Work!

All my life I’ve heard stories about my Grandpa Ron’s escapades. Yes, he was a drinker, and that put a wall between himself and his children. But as my Grandpa, that was never a factor. He didn’t show me that side. Not once. So, I grew up remember the brighter bits of his story. He was a WWII veteran. He had “money in all the banks” in Santa Anna, California (see Episode 1 of Finding Ronald for more info on this). He helped build Disneyland.

I cherished these tales of bravery, humor, and skilled talent. Grandpa taught me how to do a dove call with just my two hands. He showed me how he grew strawberries in little mounds, rather than in rows. He built a TV (or was it just a repair?) from a Radio Shack kit. He traveled the world. It’s one thing to imagine such endeavors, to flesh them out in the mind in wonderment. It’s another thing entirely to actually get to see it happening.

Not once growing up had I considered that there might be photographic evidence of my grandfather building Disneyland. A few years ago, when I truly started making headway on the “Finding Ronald” docuseries, the most unlikely example of–call it coincidence; call it fate; call it a miracle–manifested itself into my life (into Mom’s life, actually) in the form of one Gloria Pedersen. Gloria had photographs!

You see, there were two (or three?) crane operators working for A. E. Fowler & Sons on the Dinsneyland project, my Grandpa Ron, Bonie “Bonebreak,” and a man named Ivan Myrick, who was Gloria’s father. My Mom, not too long before my stepfather Harry passed away from FTD, was on vacation in Santa Anna, CA when she just happened (???) to run into Gloria, who overheard my mother telling the story of Grandpa Ron placing the spires on Sleeping Beauty’s Castle. One thing led to another, and that’s how these wonderful still photos came into my life:

Now, this was already an unexpected infusion of visual verification for my Grandpa Ron’s involvement in the project. I’ve truly cherished these images. In fact, I even used these images to create a 3D model of Grandpa Ron’s crane rig for use in the titles of “Finding Ronald.” I told myself that this was the crown jewel of photographic evidence, and that I was incredibly lucky to even have these.

And then I found the “Disneyland Secrets, Stories, & Magic” series. When I watched Episode 9, “Building Walt’s Dream,” my jaw dropped to the floor and I almost stepped on my own tongue! Here, before my eyes, was actual footage of my grandpa Ron at work. Here was actual footage of his crane placing the spires on the top of Sleeping Beauty’s castle. I wept. Sorry, but I did.

Episode 1 – “Meet Ronald,” which premieres live on YouTube on March 16th 2023, 7 PM Mountain, will look at both his life and work, as well as his disappearance. The going theory, which local authorities and media outlets immediately latched onto, was suicide. But evidence was left behind to suggest that the story may not be so black and white. I have two other, evidence-based theories, which have Grandpa Ron meeting his end at the hands of someone else. Grandpa himself warned that this might happen.

Episode 2 – “Ronald’s War,” will discuss theory number two. This theory relates to and couples together Grandpa’s WWII veteran status, his mechanical ingenuity, his world travels to known war criminal hotspots as well as to sensitive allied nations, such as Russia, and some oddities which I inherited from him after he disappeared. It also pulls in 1st hand accounts, told by my Mom, of the condition Ronald would sometimes return home in after his travels, as well as the fact that he wasn’t telling his family about all of the countries he was visiting. Only a select few made it into the “family history.” But his own handheld film reel (not sure if it’s 16mm or super 8), as well as a collection of currency from around the world, proves that he was definitely in many, many more countries than he was telling the family about.

Episode 3 – “Ronald’s Magnetic Motor,” is, for me, the most likely of the alternative theories for what happened to my grandfather. The idea here is that “Big Oil” may have killed my grandfather in order to suppress a magnetic motor that he invented, and was working to prototype. This theory has a sound historical basis when considered in the context of other independent inventors who met an unexplained, or untimely end shortly after making a technological breakthrough. People such as Rudolph Diesel, Louis Le Prince, and Stanley Meyer. Even more disturbing are contextual cases which prove that murder for “Big Oil” also has a historical precedent in stories such as that of William King Hale.

Grandpa was so worried that the oil industry might try to hurt him–or his family–that he sent semi-shredded bits of the plans for his invention to ten people around the world, who were supposed to release the invention in the event that anything happened to Grandpa. Two additional people had a list of all ten names to assist in the triggering of said release. Needless to say, they did not release anything. A childhood call to Australia, where Grandpa was having the motor prototyped, basically ended in a “we didn’t get it working” claim from an elderly Australian gentleman. But I have the letter from grandpa detailing the entire system that he dreamed up, and set in place, and warning of possible threat to him or to family members in order to kill the invention.

Episode 4 – “Finding Ronald,” will show the arduous, and somewhat dangerous process of trying to locate grandpa’s wreckage. I will attempt to interview MCSO to ascertain why grandpa’s letter was ignored during the original investigation, why they were hesitant in releasing his information to us (and still left some redacted). Finally, I will melt down spent brass shell casings, and make a poured brass plaque to memorialize Ronald’s life and final resting place. I will permanently affix the plaque to Grandpa’s car, which MCSO has deemed too difficult to remove from the site. It will be a permanent part of John Brown Canyon, at least until development creeps up there into the canyon, which will probably be long after I, too, am taking the “longest nap.”

“Stand by to stand by.” –Mad Squid


“Finding Ronald” Episode 1 Premieres on YouTube MARCH 16TH, 7PM MOUNTAIN!

You are hereby officially invited to join me for the GLOBAL PREMIERE of the FIRST OF FOUR EPISODES of my docuseries detailing the disappearance of my Grandpa Ron in 1987, as well as the discovery of his remains in 2013 in the bottom of a canyon in a secluded part of Western Colorado.

Episode 1 of 4 will premiere LIVE on YouTube March 16th, 2023 at 7pm Mountain!

This will be a LIVE EVENT, so as the writer/director/producer/editor of this project, I will be there with you in the chat, answering questions and responding to your reactions! Be there on the official YouTube Premiere page on March 16th, 2023 at 7PM Mountain (GMT-7) to engage with me during this unique event!

“Stand by to stand by!” –MadSquid

“The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” Is A Wild Ride Through The Molten Core Of Nicolas Cage’s Ego, AND I LOVED IT!

Get it on Apple TV

Carolyn and I rented another film last night. That’s two in a row, and I have to say that it’s been a welcome change from the nightly binge sessions which have caused us to rapidly deplete our entertainment regimen. It’s been a long time since film has called to me as it did in high school when I wrote my first DS9 spec scripts for Lolita Fatjo at Paramount Pictures. But the feeling is new again, so who knows where this might lead?

First, I will start by conceding that if you don’t like Nicolas Cage, or if you are on the fence about him, you may not like this film. Cage plays himself, but with a fictitious family, and an “every man’s dream” CIA recruitment debacle that nearly derails his career. (Not really. Suspension of disbelief is also important with this film!)

Carolyn was quick to point out the irony in a movie that centers around what is essentially a megalomaniac who shares the screen with other actors who are nearly all, at present, more famous than he is. Arguably. I love Nicolas, so clearly I disagree with that statement. But my wife does have a good point. His ultimate fan boy in the movie is played by Pedro Pascal, also known as The Mandalorian. His agent is played by Neil Patrick Harris. His CIA handler? Tiffany Haddish.

I’m not suggesting that if you compared any of these stars’ IMDB pages to Nick’s that they would have anywhere near the depth or breadth. Carolyn also pointed out, as I was searching for the inspiration for his bad boy alter ego in Unbearable Weight on his filmography, that I was “[…] going to be doing some Sam Jax scrolling” to find what I was looking for. And she was not wrong. The fact that it wound up being from a single appearance on an obscure talk show in 1990 called “Wogan” made my search a complete waste of time, in the end. But that is neither here nor there.

The movie gives a Nicolas Cage fan like myself exactly what we want. Nick’s ego, and constant self-verification as the world’s most important cultural savant ever (read with an appropriate level of sarcasm and/or facetiousness), along with action, well timed but not overdone comedic relief, and the most memorable lines ever uttered from the depths of a drug fueled, waking lucid dream. (I have no proof of this. I am assuming.) Yet somehow, Cage makes me believe that the older, “now” version of himself has in fact grown and matured. Even Hunter S. Thompson could never convince me of THAT!

As a founding investor at Legion M Entertainment, I have a vested interest in the film “Mandy.” I loved that film, and instantly recognized it as a cult classic. My wife did not like it so much. With that said, I was grinning ear to ear when the chrome axe that Cage forges in Mandy makes a cameo appearance at the height of tension between Cage and Pascal, the super fan concedes and opens a locked door that the CIA has ordered Nick to gain access to. The hidden vault is filled with Nicolas Cage movie memorabilia, and the two haggling over a statue of the actor was a particular high point in the movie for me.

I won’t say any more about the plot, because I don’t want to spoil any surprises. I will just say this: Nicolas Cage entertained the shit out of me last night, and kept me in a good mood until I went to bed. That’s a huge “W” in my book!

Stand by to stand by! –Mad Squid

“All Things, Everywhere, All At Once” Basically Used My Idea, But Left Some Things Out

Last night my wife Carolyn and I finally got around to renting All Things Everywhere All At Once after mentioning that we should do so several times as a result of the trailer popping up in our queue. The movie was very entertaining, and we love Michelle Yeoh as Captain Philippa Georgiou in Star Trek Discovery, so this film was a good fit for us right out of the box.

With that said, I couldn’t escape the sneaking suspicion that not only had I been aware of the subject matter of this movie for years, but that I actually wrote a logical “proof” for an infinite universe one night while bored on the mid watch at JICPAC. I showed that proof to an Air Force Officer who worked on the watch floor with me and had previously worked at Nellis AFB. His response was only, “you mistake congruent points for equal points.” Which is true, but only in a finite universe. In an infinite universe, they are one and the same. But I’ll get to that…

Congruent or Equal Points?

Shortly after showing that AF officer my proof, two things happened. First, he quietly told me to do a Boolean search for “Bell Laboratories + Roswell + new technologies.” Essentially, many “new age” technologies can be traced to BL over a very compressed period of time, shortly after the alleged UFO crash in that famous New Mexico town. His search string did not disappoint. Titanium. Lasers. Microchips. New alloys. And more. The second thing that happened was that my hard drive was “accidentally” wiped by the system administrators downstairs in our IT department.

But I have a surviving hard copy, and have recreated it digitally for safe keeping. My proof was a 4-5 page (I’d have to dig it out to be sure) bulleted list of logical progression from a single point out to an infinite multiverse. I would later learn, by watching a video by one of my favorite thinkers, Rob Bryanton, about the concept of Humans as more than a single strand of time-bound frames. A string of “nows,” essentially adding up to a movie (frame upon frame) of our lives.

Instead, we look much more like a root structure, with many branches and, eventually, an end to each branch. We are not able to see our whole selves at any given time, because we are locked into experiencing these “nows” as the illusion of a persistent flow of time, one frame at a time. Beings from a higher dimension (5th, 6th, etc., would see us all at once).

We look like a root structure to higher dimensional beings. Who knows what grows on top?

These roots branch out into their own universes, or iterations, if you will. This is what people refer to when they use the term “multiverse.” There is a potential for infinite iterations, but you could never, ever, ever experience them all in a single human lifetime, and many of them die out (end, like the roots mentioned above) while others go on. We branch out like that until we can do so no further. And then, essentially, we die.

I’m not smart enough to tell you what that means, to die. But I can tell you that I have much less fear of it now that I have a larger field of view on this amazing and beautiful existence that we happen to be sharing right now.

A multiverse is filled with iterations upon iterations of the same things, with slight differences.

Anyway, back to the movie! Everything, Everywhere, All At Once did a fantastic job of explaining this, and demonstrating how each of them might interact with each other. This is an important facet of this theory, for me, because it means that nothing is pre-determined. We can interact with other “strands” or “roots” of ourselves, or others, and perhaps even cause change by doing so. Who really knows?

Much of what takes place in this brilliantly written, heroically acted, and masterfully filmed piece of cinema history (and perhaps Human, too) fits very well into my own theory, which you will recall that I first wrote in the Navy (I discharged honorably in 2003.) But there is much that they left out!

Cookie cutter people save “the system” resources.

For one thing, they never hit on the idea of cookie cutter people. These would be different from the other iterations of us that exist down different offshoots of our larger selves. These would be people who look alike because they are literally rendered from the same code (DNA). You may know them as doppelgängers. I call them cookie cutter people. The problem is that they exist because of some unseen barrier or limitation to the confines within which we live. If this is a simulation, it may be low on memory, for instance. You may have encountered a similar thing in the very popular GTA game universe. People show up over and over because it saves the system processing power. Something to ponder.

Narrowing to an end, from inside.

Another thing, which is incredibly important, but completely missing from the film is the concept of the narrowing. This is akin to the cause/effect of cookie cutter people, except that it isn’t an intentional distribution of resources. Rather, the narrowing only rears its head when something is amiss. It’s not so much a matter of low memory as it is a matter of a character file suddenly gone missing. When there isn’t enough information to properly render a scene, you begin to be forced down a narrowing.

Fashionable Girl Dancing Silhouette With Monitors Shows Energetic Party

Most likely, a narrowing represents a spacial experience of arriving at the end of a “root” that has no where else to grow. An extreme example would be, suddenly, without warning, all channels on your TV are the same show, and it’s all gibberish. As such, when one realizes that they are experiencing it, the narrowing can cause much anxiety and fear. Hopelessness may ensue. This is the end, well, ending. It is conceivable, however, that a similar effect of “narrowing” could happen in the event that two roots fuse together. The shape would be less symmetrical and spiraling, more hour-glass-ish. Who knows what that would look or feel like.

The film addressed the question of how to jump from one branch to another in a very creative way that allowed for some comedic relief at various points throughout the movie. Finding one’s “jump path” involves doing some anomalous, and often very weird, thing and then pressing “the green button.” I won’t spoil everything for you, but the plot device is very well employed. In my view it’s more about tuning in to a resonant frequency and then isolating all other noise, but hey, who’s keeping track?

But I suppose that what is truly eating at me is the way that they changed my overall description so drastically by altering only a few words! In my logical proof, I conclude that “in an infinite Universe (i.e. multiverse), all things exist everywhere at all times.” This is an important distinction from “Everything, Everywhere, All At Once.” My language allows for access to all points from all points. Theirs suggest an overwhelming experience that is not useful but actually debilitating, if not deadly.

Anyway, there it is. I’ve said my piece. If you’re still reading, may The Gods bless you with wealth and incredible sex!

Stand by to stand by! –Mad Squid