Monday, November 30, 2009

What's Up With....

Just some general wtf moments I've had recently.

1.) the inspiration for this particular entry: Luke Wilson's hair on those cellular commercials. Really? What happened to you super cute Luke Wilson? Owen's look doesn't work on you. Sorry.

2.) People straight bashing Twilight and New Moon on Twilight and New Moon sites, articles, etc. Or people bashing in general different modes of entertainment on said entertainments website. I just don't get it. Who really takes the time to go out of there way to a website on something they don't like to bash it? I understand if it's politically and you feel that your opinion may "change the world" or whatev, but the fact you think Twilight is for teeny bopper girls...Really doesn't change my opinion and not an issue I'd focus my time on changing people's views on.

3.) The Jackson Five Reality show. Need I say More?

4.)The Coca Cola Christmas bears extinction. We can start playing Christmas movie at the mall in September, but my personal staple of Christmas is still in hibernation.

4.) Google wave. I don't want to be part of you elite society. No, thank you.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

We Interrupt your Regularly Scheduled Programming.....

Off the beaten path

You are The High Priestess

Science, Wisdom, Knowledge, Education.

The High Priestess is the card of knowledge, instinctual, supernatural, secret knowledge. She holds scrolls of arcane information that she might, or might not reveal to you. The moon crown on her head as well as the crescent by her foot indicates her willingness to illuminate what you otherwise might not see, reveal the secrets you need to know. The High Priestess is also associated with the moon however and can also indicate change or fluxuation, particularily when it comes to your moods.

What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Jim Carroll 8/1/49-9/11/09

Without internet for several weeks, I haven't been able to post anything recently. And on an incredible sad note, my favorite modern poet/spoken-word performer/punk rocker died and I grieved the only way I know how. I wrote. Now, since I'm back online I thought I'd share as he is a writer I think everyone should aquaint themselves with. He's raw, he's vivid, and his soul seemed to bleed through and spill over in his writing. Jim Carroll author of the Basketball Diaires, Forced Entries, and Fear of Dreaming died on 9/11/09. I think it's interesting to note the significance as Jim Carroll's background was always the pulsing city, whether it be his high school ball games or his next score or rocking out a list of people who died in his city (see video). I found this paper I wrote when I was a freshmen in high school. This was the time of my life I was determined to move to NYC and become a Village bum and hang out with Jim Carroll and the likes. Never made it to NYC but I still promise myself I will someday. It's sad now-as youth evaporates we see our dreams shriveling up due to circumstance. And now meeting Jim is one of those dreams deterred. I re-read my paper; I had wanted to share it on here but have decided against it. If this is the first time you've read anything by him, I don't want it to be tainted by my analysis. The thousands of dollars in student loans I pay on ever month for my schooling and the one lesson I've learned in my studies as an English major: Who gives a %#^@ what someone else's take on the work is? Enjoy it. Make it your own. Perhaps I've become a solipsist in my old age, or maybe I'm just over the "only one way to skin a cat" approach my school took and applied to all things literature, but I want you to read this and think of your own dreams, not jilted by mine... Make this one yours. RIP Jim Carroll.

Little Ode On St. Anne's Day by Jim Carroll
Your growing up,
And rain sort of remains
On the branches of a tree
That wil someday Rule the earth,
And that's good
That there is rain
It clears the month
Of your sorry rainbow expressions
And clears the streets
of silent armies
so we can dance

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Just Because...

....It was all rainy depressing day here in the midwest, so I had to add these to cheer myself up.... Even when it's rainy on the beach it was still beautiful!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Defining Mob

I found this interesting with the recent "I am the Mob" movement. It's interesting how this thought sounds almost sexy at first, this wild animal that takes over, something that you wanna be a part of. Seems passionate and fiery, and then drops the bomb with the last line. I'm all for the mob movements, the gathering of the masses for a united cause, etc. however, I can see some truth to what he is saying here. Remember what you started out standing for; don't let the excitement wrap you up and lose sight of what you came for.

"A mob is a strange phenomenon. It is a gathering of heterogeneous elements, unknown to one another (except on some essential points such as nationality, religion, social class); but as soon as a spark of passion, having flashed out from one of these elements, electrifies this confused mass, there takes place a sudden orgainization, a spontaneous generation. This incoherence becomes cohesion, this noise becomes a voice, and these thousands of men crowded together soon form but a single animal, a wild beast without a name, which marches to its goal with an irresistible finality. The majority of these men would have assembled out of pure curiosity, but the fever of some of them soon reaches the minds of all, and in all of them there arises a delirium. The very man who came running to oppose the murder of an innocent person is the first to be seized with the homicidal contagion, and moreover, it does not occur to him to be astonished at this."

Gabriel Tarde
The Penal Philosophy

Monday, August 24, 2009

Top Five Reasons I Can't Wait for September (+1)

Here's the Top Five Shows I'm excited about this fall:

Vampire Diaries Another Vamp show? BRING IT ON! And super excited to see Ian Somerhalder (Boone from Lost, also was in Smallville) back in a series. Series Premiere September 10th-CW

Castle-I'm watching a re-run now. And I love it. Just love it. Season Premiere September 21st on ABC!! They are my new Bones for tension portrayed right?

Mentalist Simon Baker is my latest heartthrob-his wit, sarcasm, play into it, but it's his character's ability to be so laid back-not giving a care-but not come off as cocky but rather charming. Season Premiere September 24th on CBS.

NCIS My mom and I always called mark Harmon the "woo woo guy" b/c of his good looks...So I've literally had a crush on the man for 20 some years now. And the rest the guys? Not too shabby. Oh. Yeah, and the shows AMAZING. Season Premiere on CBS Sept 22

Fringe By far, my favorite new show of last year. It's interesting watching Joshua Jackson evolve over the years; it's like I've grown up with him from Mighty Ducks to Dawson's Creek to Fringe =)Premieres Thursday
Sept 17 on Fox

Ok this makes six but somehow I forgot Flash Forward September 24 on ABC. Penny and Charlie from LOST-plus a messed up timeline woven in the plot-Not that Lost can ever be replaced, but after this season I was terrified the "smart" show would die with it and the Smoke Monster...but with this show I believe there is hope....

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Shameless Self Promotion

And the people who love it.
No. Really. I have decided, being the eclectic wonder I am, to break up some of my blogs. I haven't uploaded the previous ones relating to these, they will stay here, but to try to sort out some of the madness, my Vamp related blogs will primarily go here
Style:Something With a Little Bit of Bite
My Lost related blogs (there haven't been many lately, but trust me, they're coming) will go here cuz I'm Lost Till the End
Depending how those go I may break up my political rants into a separate blog as well, I'm not sure yet though. They are very new so be gentle on criticism! I had been advised to redo my template for this blog, but I couldn't find anything I liked after hours of searching; it just feels right for THIS page. I did find so many other fun things out there I wanted to try them all, so I'm starting with those two.
Between those two and this one, and a blog I keep in anonymity, (No I can't tell you...that defeats the purpose!) I have also got a good start this weekend on my novel...I consider it my Magnum Opus but we'll see. I have been writing it in screenplay and book form, so I think it will take awhile but that's ok :) I'm patient.
I'm also participating in the local events for the Audit the Fed campaign on September 15 which you haven't looked into in your own area, I suggest you do. It's exciting with all the Tea Parties and 912 meetups and now this, how the mass movement of the people seems to be greater than any other time in our history. Vietnam had it's groups of protesters but they all seemed lumped into one "group" of young hippies, whereas now there is no stereotypical protester, yet an angry mob

I digress...

Anyway, check em out lemme know what you think and what you guys are doing on September 12th and 15th =)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Cindy Sherman Project

I had a bit of a self portrait mode while on vaca...I was reading a Vogue article on Cindy Sherman, forgot how much I enjoyed her work while in college, and when nuts from there. Much more reserved, of course....

My Vent on Touch Screen Phones

Ok, does anyone else have a touch screen? I know they are all the rage, but lemme tell ya....I'm pretty fed up with mine. It seemed like a novel idea. I've used the touch screen computer monitors, and, aside from the paw prints all over the screen, it seemed cool. So I got the View, Vu, however you wanna spell it, from LG. I was dealing ok with it till it broke, got a replacement, broke again, got a replacement, then broke again. Aside from that, the phone was great. Oh, well, excepting the fact that the touch calibration was so off I looked like I was drunk texting in the middle of the day. (Hey, I keep it reserved to nights and weekends like the package, ok!?) And, if you were scrolling through to find a particular contact, you would FEEL drunk watching the names roll by, never quite ending on the one you wanted, always going to far, or jumping back up to the top somehow (yeah, you with those touch screens, you know what I'm talking about!) So after the...3rd I guess it was? phone to break...I got a new one. They had some "3rd time's a charm" rule at AT&T where if their phone screws up that many times you get a new one. How nice of them. Although I had to sit an hour and a half and wait for the warranty guy on the other end of the line with my sales rep to BELIEVE my story (Why does it feel like you are in a court case fighting for your cell phone rights with these people?) before I could get them to ship my new phone. In the meantime, I got a Zack Morris phone for the weekend. SO finally my Xenon comes in the mail, and, for the third time, I ship the Vu back to AT&T. Everything goes fine, excepting, again, an exception, that after 2 or 3 times of me shipping this thing back with no problem, they've now decided that they never recieved the last phone, I'm holding it for some kind of weird protest reason or something, and they're going to charge me 200 dollars for keeping it. For that piece of crap I couldn't get 2 dolla off of E-bay for? I think not. So while on vacation, I get 6 missed calls a day from these people about said piece of crap, I finally respond with a phone call. They're off my back, after a few choice words, now, but still. C'mon. The new phone? touch screen-better calibration, but same whirlwind when trying to scroll though contacts, and whenever I dial a number it never fails that it reads my "3" as a "6" at least once, or something similar that causes me to throw out more profanities before finally getting it right. Moral of story: If you don't already have a touch screen: stay away.

NRA-ILA :: Current members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns (sic)

NRA-ILA :: Current members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns (sic)

Shared via AddThis

Monday, August 17, 2009

Aw Sookie Sookie

So as a fan of both the books and the show, I'm really excited with the way True Blood is going. Because it follows so loosely the novels, it's like a new story every episode. Major variations are obviously the character Lafayette sticking around (yea!! totally love his character on the show...much more developed than the novel so I've become a fan) and Mary Ann (far from the bumbling "witch in training" portrayed in the novels, we also combine the character of the maenad) to the lack of J.B. from season 1, and, so far season 2.

As much as I've loved these deviations, I was concerned how the Bill vs Eric rivalry would play out. In the early episodes, I wasn't near as impressed with Eric as I thought I should be. Everything that was described in the novel, the 1000 year old viking beauty, I feel like I expected more. However, within the last season, I've fallen more and more for Eric. I started thinking about it, and I think the second book is also where Sookie starts to show serious signs of affection for Eric. Maybe more subconciously than later books, but it's there. hmmm...

Is it possible that the show pulled this miracle off somehow? That, in season one, I am less than impressed with Eric because he pulls of the cocky yeah-I've-been-around-1000+ years-what-of-it vamp thing and comes out looking like a jerk...Much like Sookie felt about him in the beginning of the series...And as the show wears on we begin to see him as we do in the book, thru Sookie's eyes from her a bit more attractive, a bit more sexy, a bit more down to earth? As far as 1000 year old vamps go, of course. What do you guys think? How do you feel about Eric from the first season to now? Better? Worse? The same?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Should have let him say it....

....He says it best

I don't know what it is, but each time I hear a Reagan speech I get a bit misty eyed. Proud to be born when he was president =)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Thank You, Mr. President

"We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office."

Thank you Mr. Change...
All I see everyday from your Change is people worried about what's happening next....not because we fear Change, but because we fear the direction this country is headed as we have seen the effects of your "change". People are rising up for the first time in a long time (1770's-ish maybe?) to speak out, but is it doing anything? I hope so. Universal this and that seems to be driving the other way. You take away, for instance, the independent health care companies (those capitalist pigs, right?) you are taking MORE jobs from the people. Because it's not just hitting the corporate big wigs, it's those people that do the small stuff. The people that have no say in your premiums or your coverage, but are just like you, trying to pay their mortgage, put their kids thru school, live the "American Dream". As depressing as this is,there is a new change...a new hope. I see it more and more, with the meetups, with the Project 912 supporters, #tcot and Tea Parties, American's are getting sick and tired. You take away everything from us, we have nothing to lose. I had a lot more I wanted to express, but have you ever been so frustrated you can't? My eyeballs are burning my body is shaking and I can't believe that we have been so blind to what's happening, and, possibly in my own personal world, these "changes" are coming down hard and fast, and not in a good way. So, rather than confuse my words and tangle myself up while I'm still seething, I'll let others speak for me till I can control the words.

"You may fool all the people some of the time, you can even fool some of the people all of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all the time."
Abraham Lincoln
“The most dangerous creation of any society is the man who has nothing to lose.”
James Arthur Baldwin

“Never contend with a man who has nothing to lose”
Baltasar Gracian quotes

“We of the sinking middle class may sink without further struggles into the working class where we belong, and probably when we get there it will not be so dreadful as we feared, for, after all, we have nothing to lose.”
George Orwell

“The Christian has greatly the advantage of the unbeliever, having everything to gain and nothing to lose”
Lord Byron

"Too bad that all the people who really know how to run the country are busy driving taxi cabs and cutting hair."
George Burns

"Put not your trust in princes."
Psalm 146. 3

Monday, August 10, 2009

Top Five Fav Movies of the 90's

I've been on a nostalgic kick happens, usually in the summer and around my birthday, so I was well prepared this time. Sometimes it can kick me in the hurts remembering how much fun summer vacations were when there was no bills, no work, no worries. My brother and I would stay up until 3 or 4 every night watching Nick at Night (remember when they showed OLD shows? Now they show shows that were popular in the 90's in which I speak) sleep in, swim, and watch MTV all afternoon (remember when they shows MUSIC videos?) Throw a few movies in there, bike rides, friends and boys, and that was my summers growing up. Pretty perfect. I always wanted to be a writer when I grew up (I'm still growing up I guess) and would lose myself in the fantasy of the movies. Maybe it was that imagination that created my own stories about the movies. Each of these on this list represents something I wanted: Either a character I wanted to see more of in myself, a lifestyle I wished to live, even if just a little while, or a character I wanted to know in real life. The fantasy was fun, it was encompassing, it was my own escapism from the recent death of my mother.....So here goes
My Top Five Fav Movies of the 90s

1.) Now and Then-the characters were me and my gang of girls. The boys were the boys we chased around, who chased us back. The at home dramas struck a little too close to home sometimes, but the lightheartedness balanced out enough to make the list.

2.)Dazed and Confused-Funny story. Rented this movie 2 weeks after my mom died (obviously not the funny part) I was 12 and if she was still around she never would have gone for it. But God bless my dad he would do anything to make my brother and I happy at this point, so he rented it. My friend and I watched it in the basement of her house while her parents were at work, drinking diet pepsi and getting sugar rushes that made us feel drunk while we danced around to the killer soundtrack. So it wasn't sugar rushes and we just wished we were drunk, but we were 12 and, even if Dad let me WATCH the movie, I knew PARTICIPATING in some of the activities in the movie would get my @$$ kicked.

3.)White Squall-Remember when Scott Wolf was all the rage? Before Lost's Sawyer vs Jack, it was Party of 5's Bailey vs Charlie on the hotness scale. I watched this movie tonite, and didn't realize that, made in 1996, Scott Wolf was born in 1968 making him...thats right...still older than me when this movie was made. Yet, Balthazar Getty (so hot in this movie btw) was born in 1975 making him only 19, but still looking the same age, if not older, than Scott Wolf. Crazy. Guess the last thing I've seen Scotty in was Go-and he still looks about 25 tops. I digress. The true draw of this film was the sea. I've always been happiest when in water-I would sit out for hours in the pool when I was ten or so, curl up in the fetal position w/ my snorkel, and bob around for hours....I've always loved going out on boats any chance i get....and I never feel as at peace as I do when I'm on the shoreline staring at the this had to make this list, bittersweet and all. And Jeff Bridges as the Captain makes the movie.

4.) Reality Bites- "hello, you've reached the winter of our discontent" + Ethan Hawke's band + Ben Stiller playing a yuppie tool (not that far of a stretch in my opinion) + Steve Zahn as the recently-out-to-his-parents gay friend=what I expected my friends would be like in my 20s. Because, you know, me and Winona are SOO on the same page and all.

5.)Basketball Diaries-"Your growing up, and Rain sort of remains on the branches of a tree that will Someday rule the Earth, and that's good there is rain, it clears the month, of your sorry rainbow expression, and clears the streets, of silent armies, so we can Dance"-Jim Carroll played by Leonardo Dicaprio. Ah-mazing. I was a complete b-ball nut back in the day so totally related to that part, but this, along with my drug talk w/ my dad, kept me clean. (In case you are wondering, my drug talk w/ my dad was, "I'm not encouraging you to do drugs, but I want you to watch this." he sits me down and we watch Easy Rider. After watching Peter Fonda drop acid and cry to his mother on the statue-I was good. And, in Peter Fonda's memoirs, he states he really did drop acid for that scene, and was crying to his mother for killing herself. My dad's a pretty smart guy diguising his motives and all. I recommend this approach to any parent. sidenote)

So there they are. The movies that shaped my childhood, shaped the amazing eclectic crazy girl you have before you today. I now insist you Netflix them all and report back to me. Or don't and tell me which ones I left off. You decide.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

7 Days

The last vacation I went on, that was more than a 3 day venture, was to Disney World the summer I turned 9. 18 years later, I finally take another week long vaca, again to Florida. We stayed in a condo on the beach (when I say we, I mean my dad, step-mom, 11 yr old brother and 6 year old sister...23 yo brother opted not to go) and I woke up every morning to the sound of the ocean.

This picture is of me on the beach after a storm. It was beautiful-the beach was all but deserted, sea creatures of all kinds washing up in the shallow water along the shoreline,and if I looked out just right, keeping the view of hotels scattered up and down the coast out of eyesight, and just focusing on the vacant beach and vast ocean, it was like my own private paradise.

I was only gone a week but it felt in ways much longer. Maybe because I didn't have my computer and was limited on using my cell phone, maybe because something about water has always made me a bit more introspective, maybe because Saturday I turned another year older, but something inside of me seemed to change in those short 7 days. When I got back home, I felt a bit empty inside. I return to a job that doesn't satisfy, friends whom I love but are very much going on different courses than I in their lives, and that feeling I forgot until the moment we hit the beach: How small of a fraction of the world I live in here.

When I took that trip 18 years ago, we had stopped at the beach, and I remember feeling tiny against the backdrop of the sea. I'm older, I'm bigger, but still got that same feeling when I stood against it this time. And that realization that it is a big, big world. One with possibilities. One with opportunity for more than what I live here. I hope that I can somehow harness this feeling into something productive, but fear that with the return to work tomorrow, it will chisel away at my soul once more, and I will regress back to the zombie I was before I left.....

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow....

I'm going on the beach....super excited. However, not until today when I checked to see if my ISP is supported in Florida, did I realize I will be without the internet for a whole week. I'm kinda freaking. I think I'll be ok. I'm bringing lots of movies and books and bought the Teach Yourself Chinese game for my Nintendo DS, along with an audio book I downloaded to teach myself Russian. SO I'm sure I'll have lots to say when I get back, but in the meantime, miss me lots :) And feel free to hit me up on FB or Twitter as my trusty phone can easily access those sites.

Monday, July 27, 2009

The War Against Bloggers

"Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech" Benjamin Franklin

Forget the war on drugs. The new administration has a new target. I bet 95% of you reading it fall into this category. Yup. The danger lies not in dealing crack cocaine in seedy back alleys, or worrying that little Bobby is smoking the Mary-Jane before Junior High. It's those awful, awful social networkers. And at the heart of it? Bloggers. Uh-oh. The NY Post's Kyle Smith reports that the new OIRA Czar, Cass Sunstein seems to think "that the bloggers have been rampaging out of control and that new laws need to be written to corral them." He goes on to quote Sunstein, "people's beliefs are a product of social networks working as echo chambers in which false rumors spread like wildfire." and "We hardly need to imagine a world, however, in which people and institutions are being harmed by the rapid spread of damaging falsehoods via the Internet....We live in that world. What might be done to reduce the harm?" This is from his book, On Rumors: How Falsehoods Spread, Why We Believe Them, What Can Be Done. Basically, what I'm getting out of this is not that he's trying to alleviate rumors, but to control what information we can read.
What is Fox News without CNN? It's like White without Black. We have to be held accountable enough to reach our own Gray. Holding bloggers, newsreporters, social networkers (twitter, anyone?) responsible for rumors is like holding a grudge against the bully in high school that started a rumor about you. Or someone you know. Or whatever situation you've had to deal with in life that someone said something you didn't believe or knew wasn't true. Did you sue them for libel? Sunstein thinks we should:
"Sunstein questions the current libel standard - which requires proving "actual malice" against those who write about public figures, including celebrities. Mere "negligence" isn't libelous, but Sunstein wonders, 'Is it so important to provide breathing space for damaging falsehoods about entertainers?' Celeb rags, get ready to hire more lawyers."

One of my most fav books ever is Tom Brokaw's Greatest Generation. The reason it's one of my favs is this idea of personal responsibility. I don't know about Obama's Dreams from my Father but I know my father was raised by a father from this Greatest Generation. He took personal responsibility, from the job he did (Welfare? Government assistance? Pell Grants? Who ever heard of such a thing?) to the family he raised to the actions he took. And I believe there are still many Americans out there like that, that have this trait of personal responsibility. Why, then, do we need someone out there regulating what we can or can't read about? I go to work everyday, pay my taxes, consider myself somewhat intelligent, and can make my own informed decisions and opinions. I don't need a filter. I don't need a babysitter. If these people that are being written about are the one's with the problem, I go back to my oldest theory: If you are paranoid that people are talking about you, you probably did something to encourage it. Guilty Conscious.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

G'day Mate, Hurley's Peddlin' Outback Chicken

Is it just me or has he lost weight?

SOOO since winning the lottery nothing but good luck? I totally thought he was going to say when he was having the dream in Australia, that, instead of chicken it was about an ill-fated plane ride in which he wound up on an island with a smoke monster, the Dharma, and there were Others...Oh well. Wonder how this ties in with the show if it does at all?! Do you guys remember the oceanic 815 website's they had? And then the ajira airways site? Sometimes I think there's clues and sometimes I think it's just something to perplex us losties until January. Something to chew on. Whatcha think?

Which Twilight New Moon Character Are You?: emmet!

I just took the "Which Twilight New Moon Character Are You?" quiz and got: emmet! What about you?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Is This Forever

I had to share this. Funny stuff. I feel for the kid. When I was 18 or so I got my wisdom teeth pulled. They didn't even do the IV, I just had laughing gas, and they even had to cut me back on that. I thought I was in Donkey Kong and trying to run away from him, him being the oral surgeon coming at me with this whirring thing, but couldn't move. I remember the blood splattering on my face and giggling because I thought it was raining inside the office. And then, after it was all over and they gave me my parting gift (my extracted teeth, in a mini manila envelope) going to the parking lot, getting in the car, and telling my dad I felt funny before bursting into tears. And he laughed at me much like that dad in this video. Enjoy. Thanks again, dad.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things

"Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens;
Brown paper packages tied up with strings;
These are a few of my favorite things."

Here's a few of my fav things of the moment:

LOST's Forum I'm skatertsol, enjoy my posts. Love chatting with fellow Losties.

Sandy Beaches

Look, in the url bar, it's a bird, it's a plane, no it's Superman's homepage Love it. And great links to Smallville related sites. Another one of my favs? Lex Luthor Michael Rosenbaum, you make bald look so good.

Star light, star bright, first Twilight link I link tonight....Stephenie Meyer's homepage for all the latest and greatest Twilight info.

For the lil creep that called me "sweetcheeks" on facebook when I had an actual argument against Universal Healthcare... I give you my favorite man on television today That's for your remark I get all my information from FOX news. Yeah, I can come up with my own opinions. I just tend to share them with this guy. Sorry I wasn't able to respond to your post dude, was busy working, paying for that eventual "free" healthcare.

This guy from CSINY. I <3 NY

I have about a gazillon books and I love being able to keep track of them at Goodreads while discussing up and coming books with others. Really, if it wasn't for that whole having to have a job thing (you know, to pay for universal healthcare) I would spend 95% of my time on this site, the other 5% reading.

what? oh sorry lost my focus there for a minute...What was I saying? Oh, favorite things. That's right. Washboards. MMMMhmmmmm

Monday, July 20, 2009


Need I say more?

The Salesman's Dream and Hamartia

In 8th grade, while cruising the library for guys, (right) I checked out Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman I had heard of Miller (He was married to Marilyn, right?) and figured I would love it, being as I felt like such an enlightened 13 year old. Love it. Wrong. I did not understand it, this simple play; where was the part that made this man an icon of literature and the stage? Years later, while in college studying Miller in a Drama class, I would understand. At the time I was working 40 hours a week and carrying a full load plus at school. I came to fully understand the "American Dream" and how easily it can become a nightmare. Miller made sense. Miller was a genius.

I had reviewed two crisiticsms for the play, one by Harold Clurman, a theater director and critic. his focus is on Loman's American Dream and his loss of reality. The second was written by B.S.Field, Jr. and directs its attention to Willy's hamartia. (4 years for an English degree and all I get to do is throw around big words on my blog and feel important. yup. feel better.) These two critiques go hand in hand. The first speaks to his attempt to follow his dream and his gradual deterioration of reality and perspective, the second to why that happened; what exactly his fatal flaw was.

Willy Loman, the salesman the play focuses on, is a working class man, struggling for that white picket fence dream. Miller's predecessors had focused on kings, queens, and other such noble figures. "Perhaps the chief virtue of the play is the attention that Miller makes us pay to the man and his problems, for the man represents the lower middle class, the $50-a-week-plus-commission citizen, whose dream is to live to a ripe old age doing a great volume of business over the telephone (Clurman, 308) In our society today this working man is seen everywhere with our slagging economy. The play has tremendous impact because in the years since it was written, it still makes the audience recognize itself. "Willy Loman is everybody's father, brother, uncle or friend, his family are our cousins; Death of a Salesman is a documented history of our lives" (308). Though it is not as realistic as life as we know it, everyone can still relate to at least one Loman at some point. "We had the wrong dreams," says Biff, and the audience sighs, as the realization sinks in. This "wrong dream" is one still held close to the hearts of many of us.

The play picks up as the audience sees Willy as a has-been salesman. The competition Willy encounters is too tough for his talents. The life he has chosen denies his true being at every step, as Biff says he should have worked with his hands. That was what he loved. However, he cannot let go of the dream. "he idolizes the dream beyond the truth of himself, and he thus becomes a romantic, shadowy nonentity, a liar, a creature whose only happiness lies in looking forward to miracles, since reality mocks his pretensions. His real ability for manual work seems trivial and mean to him " (308).

His comment to his sons that their grandfather, even their grandfather, was more than a carpenter proves he could never really let himself do what he loved. he had to hold fast to this dream of wealth, popularity, and happiness. I believe in his head he saw himself as all the above and that is why he comes off as a mad man to some readers. As Clurman says, "from this perpetual self denial he loses the sense of his own thought; he is a stranger to his own soul; he no longer knows what he thinks either of his sons or his automobile; he cannot tell who his true friends are; he is forever in a state of enthusiastic or depressed bewilderment (309).

Willy was never a content man and his sons suffer the guilt of the father. "Biff, the older, with increasing consciousness; hap, the younger, stupidly' (309) Hap seeks his satisfaction from women, lots and lots of women. Biff can't get no...Sat-is-faction from women because the only satisfaction he seeks is making his father proud. Constantly feeling like he is not doing enough, he wants nothing more than to work on t he land, his father's secret dream only Biff decodes. Not till the end of his father's life does Biff, the dynamic of the two brothers, discover the lie his father has made of his life; the wrong path his "ideals" are leading him down, tormenting his heart and mind. "With his father's death, Biff has possibly achieved sufficient self-awareness to change his course; Hap-like most of us-persists in following the way of his father" (310).

Arthur is an outright moralist. "his talen is for a kind of humanistic jurisprudence: he sticks to the facts of the case" (310). His play is clearer than those of other American playwrights because of this quality. Using similar insight s those whose "lyric gifts tend to reflect the more elusive and imponderable aspects of the same situation," Miller can relate this play to somebody we all know, if not ourselves.

Clurman retains that "there is poetry in Death of a Saleman-not the poetry of the sense or of the soul, but of ethical conscience" (310) I believe this, as this is the one play that stands out in my mind. This is the one play I think, hey, I can totally see myself in Willy Loman. My dream was-is-to write and make a living from it. A path less taken, littered along the way with struggle, failures, self-doubt and poverty all pulling me down their little side ways. Or at least I think they would. I wouldn't know. I didn't take that path. Too chicken. However, after reading Miller's play, I realized how real the failure is in every profession, especially given the current economic state. Not only did Willy Loman not follow his true dream, he failed at his fake one. From his brother, who we see only from Willy's perspective as rich but could very well be poor in the ways of love, to Hap with his many women but no true love, to Willy with his constant battle for money, this play speaks to people. "We cry before it like children being chastised by an occasionally humorous, not unkindly but unswervingly just father. Death of a Salesman is rational, dignified, and profoundly upright" (310).

How could this dream so easily be shattered? Where did Willy really go wrong? The dream itself was broken because he was unsuccessful as a salesman. Willy, however, could have changed other things in his life. Blinded by money, however, Willy could only see happy people equal to rich people. he never took the blinders off long enough to realize his family was something he could have been happy in, if only he would have listened a little more, and perhaps criticized a little less.
Field describes the end of the play as a "catastrophe" in which we see his flaw and the consequences that follow. Field poses the question, "how does Willy's catastrophe stand as a poetically just consequence of his hamartia (323)? This idea fascinates me. There have been many different answers to that question and many resolutions as a result. However, what was Willy's crime that lead to this catastrophe? "Willy's crime is that he has tried to mold his sons in his own image, that he hs turned them into wind bags and cry babies (323). He goes on to say they are "not sexually impotent, no more than Willy is, but they are impotent in a larger sense" (323). Happy complains of the meaninglessness of his life in Act I when he says, "sometimes I sit in my apartment- all alone. And I think of the rent I'm paying. And it's crazy. But then, it's what I always wanted. My own apartment, a car, and plenty of women. And still, goddammit, I'm lonely."

We know that Willy's dream was to own that house, have his car, and have his family. Hap has followed in those footsteps in a sense, yet finds quantity over quality of women. However, he is still lonely. Willy did not lead him directly to that error, but we know that he had many lovers unbeknownst to his family. Could all of these years of sneaking around subconciously rub off on Hap? Is it hereditary? It is possible that the way he treated Hap's mother and the message he gave out about women after all these years of womanizing effected Hap in a deeper capacity.

The boys seem to be morally and socially retarded. Willy himself has no basis for making moral choices. "It is not so much that he chooses or has chosen evil, but that he has no idea how to choose at all" (323). Throughout the play everyone, including Willy himself, is contradicting him. "he lives in a morally incoherent universe, an incoherence that is the most striking element of the play which describes his torments" (324). Since he is morally incapacitated, this leads to his social incapacitation. He wants so much to be liked and be popular, yet everything is against him. The city itself is slowly killing him throughout the play, along with the competition in his line of work.

Worst yet, not for nothing can he get along with the son he lvoes most. "the very seeds he plants no longer grow. Nothing he does has any consequences. He simply cannot make anything happen" (325). Trying to describe a person like Willy, who has no "character" in the sense that Miller implies in his dialogue, one might say that he has no initiative. Or, from Fields:"One may say he has no balls" (323) I personally like Fields' description. More visual. He goes on to say that "neither have his sons" that "Willy's efforts to mold these boys in his own image have not been a failure but a success" (323). The boys have turned out just like him, and what a success that is! "they offer two aspects of the same personality, Happy taking more after his mother, perhaps, but both sharing the same defect with their father. They cannot make anything happen. They are morally and socially castrated" (323) To know that Willy was still unhappy with his sons even though he had accomplished making them out to be like him, to me, is a reflection of how unhappy Loman truly was with his own life. That was his hamartia; that is what lead him to suicide.

This play offers up so much in such simple words. Miller truly does speak to the common man, to the Willy Loman in all of us. This is truly one of the darkest, most depressing plays I've ever read. Why? Because it's the one I can most easily relate to. Medea-Mythological creature from ancient time and place. Romeo and Juliet? Don't even get me started. Hamlet? That whiny little rich boy? Nope. Loman's are everyman and if you haven't read it, I definitely recommend you do.

Both Clurman and Fields' works can be found in Drama Criticism, Volume 1

Tips on Tanning & Skincare

At one time I was a sales rep for a lotion company, and picked up a few tips I thought I'd pass along here. Check back in a couple weeks if you are laying flooring, 'cuz I sold that, too =) I know what you're thinking, I'm amazing, please hold all applause till the end.

1.) Apply a powder bronzer on the neck to create a shadow effect. Awesome allusion slimming feature. see number three for additional slimming tips

2.) If you are going for a spray tan, don't eat broccoli the night before. Some of the vitamins in the broccoli can turn your skin orange-y (weird I know, but it's the truth.)

3.) Caffeine based lotions when tanning usually sell as "slimming". This doesn't mean you are shedding pounds in the tanning bed. Caffeine boosts circulation and temporarily tightens the skin. For true slimming, take a bike ride.

4.) If you use a lotion with a bronzer in it, like the new ones you can buy at Walmart, and are struck with the orange glow or streaking, taking a bath with 1 cup of milk. It tones down the color. (I know, again, WEIRD, but it works.)

5.) Mineral oil. YUCK. Gasoline by-product. Clogs pores. Creates a barrier on the skin so other, more nourishing ingredients can't get thru (IE that greasy feeling you get when applying lotion? Prolly cuz it's got mineral oil in it and the rest is sitting on top of your skin!)

6.) In conjuction w/ number five-The ingredient listed first is what there is the most of in the lotion. IE if mineral oil is first, aloe vera 15th, but the big sticker on front sales "NOW WITH ALOE VERA" you should get a towel because you were hosed.

7.) The more hydrated your skin is, the better it keeps a tan. That's also why they tell you to exfoliate. Not only will you not streak with lotion, you will maintain a longer tan. Emu oil (yup. The stuff from the birds) actually penetrates the deepest so find a lotion with that in it.

8.) Emu oil also cures scars and stretch marks. Don't believe me? Google it. Oh wait. I did it for you.

9.) Lotions with silicone (IE-Designer Skin's Enamor) are my fav. Silicone creates a lock so to speak. This has the opposite effect of the mineral oil, as it locks the good stuff in. You can totally tell the difference, as your skin feels immediately smooth but not greasy.

10.) When applying lotion with bronzers, do it in circular motions, not up and down. That up and down is why you are streaking. Try it. I'm telling ya.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Johnny Depp is the Mad Hatter


I just got my Entertainment Weekly, and there it is. Alice In Wonderland. March 5 2010. Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter. How freaking cool is that? Alice in Wonderland has to be one of my favorite "kiddie into adult" obsessions, and Johnny Depp has definitely been there from childhood on as well. From Cry Baby to Edward Scissorhands, What's Eating Gilbert Grape to Capt Jack Sparrow, and now John Dillinger to the Mad Hatter, Depp's always been able to dangle on the edge of fantasy and reel it back in to give stellar performances as the "normal" guy. It's amazing the number of movies this man has been in and the range he displays. I don't care what anyone says, hands down best actor of our generation.

My Top 5 Fav Johnny Depp Movies:

5.)Pirates of the Caribbean - All of them. They get a little darker each time, and the movies themselves lose my fan fav as they go along, but Depp's performance in all are outstanding.

4.)Finding Neverland - Again, another of my greatest loves from childhood, Peter Pan. The movie wasn't at all what I expected, but I was assuredly not disappointed.

3.)Don Juan Demarco - One of the first movies I saw him in so it has to stand as a fav

2.)Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Depp's playing an amazing writer, alongside another amazing actor, Benicio del Toro, for an amazing ride. What a long strange trip it's been.

1.)What's Eating Gilbert Grape - I still remember the first time I saw this movie. Juliette Lewis says to him something about Beauty fading and We all get old and it's what's on the Inside that counts. I remember watching that and it clicking-didn't really matter how hard you try to look good, there will always be someone skinnier or prettier out there. And that was ok. But it was what's on the inside that counts. And Johnny Depp totally fell for her so I should work on my inside. Keep in mind, I was 11 when this movie came out. It seemed pretty prolific at the time, given the fact I was in junior high, a time when self doubt and critique is at an all time high. I think that movie really set the pace for the way I would think as time went on. Because if she felt that way, and she was able to get Johnny Depp's character, I'd surely find my own somewhere down the line =)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Mad Ramble's In the Attic OR My Dabble in Metafiction

A bit of dust, a dash of mothballs, and a hint of memory lane. Something from the past. Please be forewarned: If you are trying to take any bit of knowledge of anything other than what a clown I was (ok who am I kidding...Still am....) step away. If you have no sense of humor, click your back button and go back to Twitter and find someone else to tweet. And if you are my dad, well...I apologize for anything I am about to incriminate myself with here in the next few lines.

Part I Teen Angst

This first bit has been edited for content, and I have to say, I crack up reading it as I have no idea who half the people I refer to are. Including the "hottest guy I've ever seen." Really. Absolutely no recollection. Eh. I was 15.
Dec 1 1997.
Life in the Fast Lane. Last year that was the story of my life. The more things change, the more they stay the same, obviously. Me and Boy Wonder1 broke up a week ago. Effed2 if I cared. I hate school. I like this guy, but I think he thinks I want to flat out go out with him, like the Junior High s***. I wanna date him. I wanna date a lot of people. One of them, Batman3 has a girlfriend and goes to Gotham City4 He wants to go out with me this weekend. The other is this HOTTIE (the hottest guy I've ever seen!!) and he has a girlfriend. When I say date, I mean like, go out, have fun, no worries. No one seems to want that. Superman (that's the guy's name, he's in my driver's ed class) is from Smallville5 and is cool as eff. Hi sgirlfriend is pretty but, eff, so am I. I no longer have such low self-esteem 26 year old Ramble's note: No, 15 year old Ramble, obviously that wasn't an issue. No longer do I crave the sympathy trips. Eff all I crave is excitement. And some new blood ok, 26 year old interjecting once more. For the record, I write a LOT about vampires now, I realize that, it's the craze....but for the record, I meant new blood figuratively. I'm not goth and never was. Nothing wrong with that, just wanted the reader to have a clear visual It's only December and I'm already sick of school hard core again.I'm effed too cause I haven't been doing s*** on my homework. Eff, why does Metropolis6 have to be so damn boring? I need guys from other schools that's all there is to it!!!
December 16 1997
What's the point of doing home work when you're damned to flunk the class because of stupid teachers. Eff it. Ten years from now, I'll be somewhere besides that crummy little school of Metropolis High. yes, somewhere far far away, like down the street 2 1/2 years left. Yuck. 5 days till Christmas break. Watched Con Air tonite. Great movie.

Footnotes 1 Obviously his name wasn't Boy Wonder, but you prolly already figured that one out. Right? 2 "Effed" wasn't popular when I was in high school. Apparently, the traditional version was. I used it quite a bit. Got that one, too, didn't ya? Apparently over-dramatization was my thing, too. "Life in the Fast Lane" really? I don't know who I was kidding. 3-6 Yeah. I'm a comic book geek. Wanna fight? I'll eff you up.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Reality: He's Just Not That Into You

Very rarely do I watch a movie before reading the book. To most, that's the criminal, as the movie's usually fall incredibly short of the book's impact,or so far off base it's merely an echo of the novel. Of course, I gotta be different. Personally, I think I'm a bigger fan of Twilight because I read the books first. Otherwise, the movie would have come off as mere teen angst. Instead, it was a shining reflection of something much deeper that lay 'twixt the pages of Stephenie's work of genius. But I digress....

....For the first time in a long time I watched a movie before I read the book. Yes, I know, I am a perfect candidate to read He's Just Not That Into You by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo. Shockingly, no I haven't read it. I will tell you though,
I started the movie with so much head nodding I had to pop some Aleve when it was over. I love fiction as much as the next, but who doesn't love that feeling of attachment you have the the protagonist? That "Everyman" (or woman) vibe...It's you, it's your sister, it's your friend, it's your coworker. Refreshing. And so true. I'm a big fan of realism in my romantic-comedies. I know, that's not what they're made for, but it's unexpected. They should do it more often. I totally felt promise,
We are all programmed to believe that if a guy acts like a total jerk that means he likes you.

This came at the beginning of the movie, with the little girl being told by the boy she likes (circa age 5) that she smells like dog poo. (Who HASN'T been there right? Well, Ok no one ever told me I smelled like dog poo, but I remember in 3rd grade being asked by a boy why I killed my hair. Mom thought it was a good idea to get a perm (it wasn't) and when I went home and cried, my mom's response was the same as Gigi's: he's mean to you...because he likes you. Yes! We are programmed at a very young age to allow this abuse!!! This is followed by a montage of girlfriends rapping over guys, girl A filling the others in with some sad excuse the guy gives her, while girl (s) B-Z come up with ever excuse under the sun for his excuse, insisting to friend A that said guy will call. We globe trot a bit in this scene, from here to Asia to Africa:
I'm sure he just forgot your hut number! Or was eaten by a lion!

From this point on, the grown up girl narrator Gigi (dog poo girl) begins to create a nervous friction in me. Biting my nails and Ramblings in my head: Is she really thinking of showing up there just because he said he hangs out there? Nothing like looking desperate. No, don't call him AGAIN. Oh, oh no, reading waaaay to far into that. Oh, no, he invited you to the party, not to get married! However, it was real. I've seen girls act like that. Reality. Love it. Of course, I've never acted like that or anything. Of course. ahem.

And then, after throwing herself at the guy who'd taught her everything she knew about being "just not that into" her, she says it....
I may dissect each little thing and put myself out there so much but at least that means that I still care. Oh! You've think you won because women are expendable to you. You may not get hurt or make an ass of yourself that way but you don't fall in love that way either. You have not won. You're alone. I may do a lot of stupid shit but I'm still a lot closer to love than you are

And that's when it all came back to that warm fuzzy you-know-this-is turning around. Which, I can't lie, maybe I'm too much LIKE Alex, I hate. I was really hoping for more of a "realistic" ending. Nope. Of course her little "speech" worked, made him realize that he's really THAT into her, and starts to take on her obsessive behavior trying to win her back. And he does. Of course.

Ah, but not to be entirely disappointed (I am such a cynic, I know) Janine and Ben don't have the happy ending. And, Ben doesn't get to have his cake and eat it to, as Anna leaves him. He didn't want to be married, but wasn't man enough to tell her when she gave him the ultimatum (Yeah, who really wants to get married that way anyway??) that he wasn't ready, so enter Anna, the hot chick at the grocery store that has that "this is what I'm missing out on" allure. So the affair begins, and ends after he blurts it out to Janine in the middle of Home Depot that he slept with someone else. Instead of leaving him, she tried to "surprise" him at the office with a little afternoon delight. Little does she know Anna's shoved in the closet and gets to listen to her boyfriend screw his wife. That Jerk! So, she leaves him. For good. Wifey sticks around till she has that "snap" moment finding a pack of cigarettes (She KNEW he was smoking. Because that was the worst thing he was doing...right) And that was the straw that broke the camel(and the mirror's) back. Never missing an OCD beat, she neatly folds every towel, washcloth and sock, matches every shoe with it's mate, and lines it all up for him with a carton of smokes on top with a simple note "I WANT A DIVORCE" Now THAT was reality. The movie was had come full circle and I was in full head-nodding agreement once more as Gigi narrated more truth:

Girls are taught a lot of stuff growing up. If a guy punches you he likes you. Never try to trim your own bangs and someday you will meet a wonderful guy and get your very own happy ending. Every movie we see, Every story we're told implores us to wait for it, the third act twist, the unexpected declaration of love, the exception to the rule. But sometimes we're so focused on finding our happy ending we don't learn how to read the signs. How to tell from the ones who want us and the ones who don't, the ones who will stay and the ones who will leave. And maybe a happy ending doesn't include a guy, maybe... it's you, on your own, picking up the pieces and starting over, freeing yourself up for something better in the future. Maybe the happy ending is... just... moving on. Or maybe the happy ending is this, knowing after all the unreturned phone calls, broken-hearts, through the blunders and misread signals, through all the pain and embarrassment you never gave up hope.

Aw. Maybe I hadn't given Gigi enough credit. Maybe I was seeing too much of myself in her, and when she got the happy ending felt cheated, because, thus far that hasn't been my truth. Mine's not quite Janine's either, but it's my own. And I agree with Gigi completely that the happy ending doesn't always include a guy....I was thrilled that a movie could end with a positive spin on that thought for once. Closing in on 30 in a few short years, and turning into Katherine Heigl in 27 Dresses, it's very refreshing for a character like Janine and even Anna to come out headstrong and on top, while Ben doesn't get either and merely looks like a slimeball in the end. Sorry Ben, they just weren't that into you.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Top 5 Reasons Sookie's Cooler than Bella

Ok....So I got to thinking, that's not entirely fair. Without further adieu, here's Sookie's moment
***Warning: If you only watch True Blood and haven't read all the books, this may be considered a spoiler. However, with the creative liberty the writers of the show take, I could be way off =) ***

True Blood and True Blood Pictures

1.)She's got a tan...And she works for it!

True Blood and True Blood Pictures

2.) Part Fairy

3.) Her vamps are men, not teenagers.

True Blood news and True Blood Pictures

4.)She doesn't have to hide her man's a vamp.

True Blood

5.)She went to bed with a real TIGER.

Top 5 Reasons Bella's Cooler Than Sookie - Glitter Graphics

1.) She actually turns into a vampire (Sookie's fate -TBD)

Bella Swan as a vampire

2.) She COULD date a human, and not have to listen to his thoughts since she's not telepathic (but who'd wanna do that anyway, right?)

pimp myspace

3.) No messy fang marks to hide.

Twilight baseball nomads

4.) She can hang with Edward during the day and he doesn't start to fry (Poor Bill!) - Glitter Graphics

5.) Her man GLITTERS. - Glitter Graphics

Twilight Movies Fan Site - is your ultimate resource for information about Twilight the Movie and the actors. We are a great resource for Twilight memorabilia and information.