Il Settimo sigillo (Ingmar Bergman, 1957)
The blue lighting gives a coldness to the metal desks that infinitely fill the large office space. Desks upon desks hold computers with old grayish screens. Keyboards rest on the tables after weeks upon weeks of labor leave them with black marks on the previously white keys. The pictures one would normally place on the desk are all but empty frames and not a single ounce of humanity can be found in this endless moonlight.
There, behind the shades and a glass door, lies, under the scope of my rifle, the VP of this company. I see him working. The balding spot on his head with a cross on it. I load my rifle. Hold my breath. Unaware of the bullet that will shortly create a hole between his eyebrows Mr. VP continues to dabble on his computer. Numbers upon numbers, Income on top of income, all of it flowing through him. The lives of a thousand plus families being managed through his incapable fingers. It is at these times that I think about the meaning of life, and as I press the soft trigger and feel the warm kick of the rifle against my shoulder, I feel one with the universe.
Glass is shattered as the copper death flies through the air. A low ringing fills my ears as blood spits to his computer monitor. The hands twitching as the keyboard overflows with blood. The dirty keys become red. Pinkish remains spread on the floor and his head continues to bob back and forth, struck by the forceful impact of a seven millimeter bee.
In 16th- and 17th-century London, in response to recurrent epidemics of bubonic plague, authorities instituted the tradition of publishing a bill of mortality each week.
The “Great Plague of London,” which hit the city in the summer of 1665, is estimated to have killed between 75,000 and 100,000 Londoners (out of a total population of about 460,000). This page represents the death tally of all city parishes for the week of Aug. 15-22, 1665, when the plague had infected 96 of the 130 parishes reporting.
In his book Shakespeare’s Restless World: A Portrait of an Era in Twenty Objects, Neil MacGregor writes that the bills cost about a penny, and were published in large print runs. The other side of the bills contained information on deaths broken down parish by parish. (via Bill of mortality: Document shows death toll during the Great Plague of London)
"Haven’t they got any eyes? Have they forgotten what a star looks like?"
Sunset Boulevard, Billy Wilder 1950