Friday, August 27, 2010
Monday, August 23, 2010
- The "Hollywood Mystique" is now gone. I no longer get starstruck when celebrities walk by. I never really did in the first place. It was always interesting to watch people go on "Starline Tours" or freak out over a person who gets mroe screentime than the average Joe.
- On the Necessity of Sunglasses...California gets too much sun. I'm a Northerner...I do not like this. Oh, the things I put up with for film!
- I'm not a big fan of L.A. There are too many people. The traffic is horrible. And, the general culture is somewhat antithetical to my beliefs. I don't understand the appeal. But, I love the film industry and will go where I need to go to be involved in it. If that means moving to L.A., ok. Once I get myself established, I hope to be able to split my time between L.A. and elsewhere (with a little more time in elsehwere).
I wish I had more time and brainpower to write something a bit more profound. But, I feel that if I wait any longer to write a final post it will never happen. This is my final post, unless anything else comes to mind. Thanks for tuning in. Good night, and good luck. :)
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Anywho, our airport hell began early in the day. As is typical in my family, we arrived several hours early to miss traffic, turn in the rental car, avoid lines, and eat some dinner. The airline of choice was Spirit Airlines - a small airline based out of Detroit. Most of the time, Spirit has flights to/from Detroit and the Caribbean. It has a few lines to the major cities, mostly red-eye flights (which are cheap). It ain't schnazzy, but it gets the job done. Well, at least in Detroit. We arrived at LAX around 3:30pm. We learned from the Frontier-Midwest Airlines counter that the Spirit people would not arrive until 7 freaking 30 PM:P If only they had told that to us sooner! So, we sat/napped on rather uncomfortable chairs. Soon, other people found themselves in the same position. We got through tickets and security by 8pm (our flight being at 10pm). We were all getting a little cranky because our blood sugar was rather low by that point. So, we got some awesome burgers at Ruby's. And then, waited in more uncomfortable chairs.
Finally, the plane arrived, we got on board, and were quickly under way to DTW. The price of our tickets definitely reflected the quality of the plane's interior. The seats were reminded me of the airport seats, only worse because I really wanted to sleep at that point. As the plane took off from the runway, I watched the sparkling lights of L.A. sink into the mist. Between short naps, I woke up to look through the window at the world below. I'm glad I did. Flying at night is absolutely beautiful. Wispy, galaxy-like cities and twinkling towns shone through the milky mist. I had the odd sensation of looking *down* into space. I did look up and see that vast sky. In fact, the mist and clouds made it look as if the sky and land bled in each other.
I was happy to land in DTW. I haven't been so tired in a long time. And, what a kink in my neck! Oye Vey! We went down to the baggage claim and saw a sign stating that DTW was voted one of the top airports in America. I believe that. So much better than LAX... As we waited for our luggage, we saw two families being greeted by their pet Yorkies, reminding me of my Yorkie-sibling;) How I miss her. We got a shuttle to our car, drove back home, and slept like a pile of rocks. Mmmm...REM cycle.
I should have a few final posts to wrap this up. Hopefully they will be entitled "The Hollywood Mystique" and "On the Necessity of Sunglasses and Other Final Thoughts." Later, alligator:)
Sunday, August 15, 2010
A week and two days has passed since my last day at the film production company. I found myself becoming rather sentimental/nostalgic, even though I had only spent 10.5 weeks there. It's amazing how quickly you can become acclimated and attached to the places you have seen and the people you have met. I enjoyed every bit of my internship. The company had a great culture and the people were wonderful. I finally discovered that I belong in the production & development side of the filmmaking process. I now have a long-term goal to reach. I have learned so much about the film industry, gained so much experience, and became friends with so many lovely people...this all made it difficult for me to leave. And, of course, when I finally find my stride and become friends with my co-workers, it's time for me to go. But, I won't be gone too long. And, I'm looking forward to my last year at college. It's going to be great. But, I will have one foot in, one foot out.
I remember my last day at the production office rather clearly. It was a quiet day with very little to do. Despite this, I was deperately trying to finish up any projects I had left so as not to leave anything unfinished. I left work late that day, but didn't mind one bit. I said goodbye to my boss, my fellow interns, and other people around the office. It was particularly hard for me to say goodbye to several people, as I had gotten rather close to them. I walked out the door, took the elevator down, and started walking toward the restaurant where I would meet up with my parents for dinner. I felt the tears welling up, but kept myself from sobbing. I am so freaking sentimental.
Next day, LAX. Ick...that's a story for another post;)
Friday, August 13, 2010
(Amanda) cold pizza crust you flicked an ant off of and double stuf golden oreos = Breakfast of Champions!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
My parents arrived in LAX late Friday evening and picked up a rental car. I had told them to take the 405 at their own peril. You see, L.A. traffic never ends. It is somewhat akin to the Energizer Bunny. Although it would take longer, the Pacific Coast Highway would have been far less stressful. They took the 405 at 11pm on Friday night. As my Mother said, "The GPS paid for itself that night." My poor Father, worn down Spirit Airlines, had to take his life into his own hands and enter the hell that is California's highway system. Be Aggressive, B-E Aggressive! Since everyone is from somewhere else in L.A., there is no established road ettiquette. Turn signals are optional equipment, horns are near-constant backround noise, weaving in and out of lanes is a normal way to get into the next lane, and illegal texting is still a common past-time. Fortunately, they arrived in one piece. Poor Dad had to drive around in this crap for the rest of the week. (Traffic is one of the major negatives in L.A.). Let's just say I appreciate the public bus system more after this.
Early Saturday morning, I took Mom and Down down to Santa Monica Beach, the place I frequented on my free days. It was a foggy, nippy morning with barely a soul on the beach. We walked barefoot in the wet sand. Dad got his ankles (and the bottom of his jeans) nailed by a particularly wiley wave, prompting him to yell a benign expletive and giving me a great photo-op. We walked down toward the Pier, picking up a sandwich-bag-full of seashells along the way. We walked up and down the Pier, laughing at the strange, New-Jersey-esque people we saw. When the sun came out, we shrank away like vampires toward the Third Street Promenade, protecting out pastiness. Burgers, Pinkberry, a walk down the Promenade, and we were on our way back home. It was a wonderful day and deserved a siesta in the afternoon.
I took my parents to the OPC Church I had attended while in L.A. They got to meet everyone I had gotten to know over the 10 weeks I was there. In the evening, we noticed that it was going to be a crystal clear night sky. Apparently, so did everyone other frickin' person in L.A. Since Dad and I are astronomy nerds, we all decided to go to the Griffith Observatory. Our stressful journey took us through the narrow streets of Korea Town, whose signs were mostly in Korean. Ironically, I saw more Hispanics there than Koreans. Oh well. After driving through hills of old Hollywood homes, we arrived at the Observatory Road, only to find the parking lot full and the overflow parking streching down the hillside. Not tonight. Double damn! I think most people were there because it was free, not because they were astro-nuts. Whenever something is free, I always feel more inclined to use/take it, even if I don't need or want it. For instance, I have a collection of bus maps and L.A. Weekly's in my room. I don't need or particularly want them. I just feel like taking one anyway. Maybe I have a mild, subconscious form of kelptomania.
Now, you must wait in suspense for part 2. Mwahaha!
Monday, August 9, 2010
I've got different glasses on now. It's weird. I don't see bursts of life standing amid the broken concrete; I see weeds invading a vacant lot. Stuff like that all over. Not everything's wonderful here, but it's home.
I'm painting my room.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
My normal alarm is 7 a.m., though I usually wake up before it goes off. This gives me plenty of time to shower, read, enjoy the morning before Betsy gets up and we eat breakfast. We usually leave the apartment between 8:30 and 8:50, except on Tuesdays, when we have to be in an hour earlier.
I was wiped. I set my alarm for 7:45 -- because 45 minutes makes a huge difference, I know -- and fell asleep.
I woke up before my alarm -- maybe 7:42 or so -- and realized that it was Tuesday morning. I woke Betsy up.
"Betsy? It's Tuesday, right? We have to be in the office at 8, right?"
"Yeah. What time is it now?"
"Okay. If we get out the door in five minutes, we can make it."
We did, and had a wonderful lunch with an assoc editor, and I am still tired.
Monday, August 2, 2010
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
On the windowsill: an assortment of pots (origins, left to right: antique store, flea market, Mom's garage, brother's beer mug collection, thrift store; contents, left to right: dead basil, rosemary, empty because the spider plant got spilled, live basil, ivy), two tomato paste cans (one with quarters, one with pens), a pile of receipts, a glass of water, and a mason jar.
On the floor: a Mac, a PC, six pairs of shoes, one pair of socks (about four feet apart), two mugs, a pair of sunglasses, a mixing bowl, Early Christian Writings, a DVD of 30 Rock Season 2, a laundry bag, a pile of newspapers, a postcard from an indie/hippie store, a camp hat, a mirror, and a draft of a big project.
On the walls: a drawing of Ernest Hemingway, a map of Michigan, and an art print that looks like horses if you're a girl and dinosaurs if you're a guy. No curtains. A broken air-conditioning control.
On the bookshelf: a pen and a pencil, a crochet hook and an unfinished project, a few stamps, a pair of cheap binoculars, a 4x6 file box, a copy of the lease, a box of frog notecards, a coaster with a parrot on it, a pile of bulletins from several churches, a flyer for the art museum's psychadelic 60s exhibit, a long receipt listing now-overdue books from the public library, craisins, and the little thing that broke off from the air-conditioning control.
On the other bookshelf: overdue library books (lots), a frisbee, and a little cardboard box.
In the cupboard and drawer: three forks with blue paint on the tips, five knives from various thrift stores, too many spoons, a borrowed set of (matching! china!) plates/saucers/teacups, four bowls from somebody's Greek grandfather's restaurant, four boxes of South Beach Diet Strawberry Harvest cereal, and too many frying pans.
What are they eating for dinner?
b) macoroni and cheese
c) hamburger helper
d) salmon and vegetables sauteed with spices and a hint of lemon on top of farfalle with olive oil
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Sorry, guys. I've been swamped with work -- I actually have been; I'm sure I'll tell you all about it when we get back to Hillsdale. But...
Do you ever look at yourself and wonder how God could have been so good to you? I was thinking that... I almost don't believe it.
Last weekend I went up north. Highlights:
-Fr. Bob, high school chaplain and dear friend, called me Friday morning, just a "hey, I haven't heard from you in a while" call -- I hadn't heard from him in a while, maybe a year -- and I said hey, I'm going up north anyway, so we had coffee in Ann Arbor Friday afternoon. (I say "had coffee" because that's what people understand. I had a smoothee or juice or something.)
-Made it up to Houghton Lake, where my mom's family was, and talked my cousins into swimming and my dad into a bike ride. Slept like a rock.
-Woke up, said goodbyes, took pictures, said goodbyes, and I drove off to camp.
-Camp? Ran into Cathy, who's deaf, and she taught me how to sign "visit." Jumped on the brown dump (truck) with some dear friends and drove around on an equipment move (the best part of camp work). Ate lunch, went climbing, went sailing, hiked around the lake (there's a trail for maybe 70 percent of it; the rest is guessing your way through trees and muck and sometimes almost solid ground), shot a .22 and Jason's mauzer (sorry for spelling; it's Chilean and around 1885, I think), learned how to say "you have spinach in your teeth" in Slovak, went out for pizza ("a purse? Mary, you have a purse? what happened to you?"), burned stuff, slept like a rock. Woke up, changed my blinker bulb, cried, said goodbyes, hugged, went to Mass.
-Met a friend after Mass, went to Subway, discussed aesthetic vs. metaphysical beauty.
-Drove home, had dinner with my family (=parents and sister), slept like a rock. Woke up at 5:45 and hit the road.
-Got back to the apartment in time for a nap before Betsy woke up.
This weekend? Tony came.
Needless to say, I often go to this Starbucks for several hours on my days off to sip coffee and read. Thanks to this rigorous regimen, I have completed A History of Histories with a month to spare. I also use the time to knit, to listen to music, to read a book abotu producing, and to chip away at books for script coverages.
There are some regulars. First, the baristas. There is one very happy blonde girl who always smiles and remembers my name. I try to avoid the loud Eastern European lady sho gives me a headache every time I approach the cash register. There are a couple of homeless people who hang out outside begging for coffee. I occassionally end up talking to people who sit near to me. One lady had a baby who kept giving me the most serious, sarcastic baby-face ever! He was so adorable... I did run into one creepy guy who obviously woke up on the wrong, drug addled side of the Sixties. That made me leave Starbucks in a hurry. Oftentimes, my knitting attracts stares (apparently they haven't seen people knit before).
My favorite days at the corner coffee shop are cloudy, cold, seaside mornings that beg for a Grande White Chocolate Mocha with whip cream and whole milk:) Just me, my coffee, my knitting, and my book.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Monday, July 19, 2010
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Ok - you probably won't guess. This old man was wearing an XXS tank top that only covered his ribcage, followed by a girl's 10-inch plaid/pleated skirt. To complete this disturbing image, just add a pair of gray/black argyle nylon thigh-highs and girl's commando boots, and we have ourselves a winner. This is on the level of skateboarding Asian man wearing a kilt while playing a dijareedoo...but not quite as awesome. It was more disturbing. Yeah. Please erase this image from my brain.
*awkward turtle* times a hundred.
Friday, July 16, 2010
Many of the things I overhear are inocuous (but not all): giggling (which may or may not be innocent), slurred speech, beer bottles breaking, juvenile jokes and MOVIES. When these frequent partiers feel like playing a drinking game, they pop in Pirates of the Caribbean at about 11pm (when I am going to sleep) and take a shot whenever a plot hole becomes apparent. As one can imagine, they get absolutely sloshed rather quickly. As I drift off in an attempt to peacefully slumber, my brain begins to process pirate "Arrr!"s and Hans Zimmer's swashbuckling score. And, voila! Pirate-themed dreams. I have never had so many pirate-themed dreams in such a short period in my life. What makes this more confusing is that they will also randomly break into American-butchered versions of Mexican drinking songs while watching the movie. This normally happens when they have reached the ending scenes in Cortez's cave, when it becomes apparent that no one knows what the full conditions of the curse are. If you have read this just before going to bed, do not be surpised if you see a half-drunk, lurching Captain Jack Sparrow mumbling some nonsense at you while dancing to a Mariachi Band's street corner performance. He is a frequently-confusing cast member in my dreams/nightmares, courtesy of my neighbors.
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Today was a good day.
Monday, July 12, 2010
- My more frequent use of coffee as a defibrillator/mental stimulant in the afternoon. If a script is bad, it becomes necessary to induce alertness through caffiene.
- My internship requires me to be on the computer for more hours straight per day than a college history research paper. Luckily, screen brightness is an adjustable feature of most laptops, including Nommo.
- It is hard to cook healthily for one person when you are bushed at the end of an 8-hour work day and do not cook meals with a roommate. Also, food is very expensive around here. I am eating enough, but I may be (*probably am*) deficient in something. I will write a short treatise on microwavable meals soon.
- So far, I have read approximately 1500-2000 pages for my internship and have wrote at least 75 pages. My eyes are probably begging for a break, although they got one over the Fourth of July. Man up, eyes!
Hopefully, I will figure out this little conundrum before I need to invest in a pirate patch.
REALITY CHECK! IT IS FRICKIN' FREEZING (comparatively speaking, of course). "June Gloom" is still in full swing...in July. Why can't the weather check the calendar? Southern California is currently experiencing its coolest summer on record: low 50s-60s, high 70s. So much for "Global Warming." Michigan is having a way hotter summer than SoCal. This is nice to a certain extent because I whilt in heat, like my Father before me. In fact, I like the cooler weather of mid-summer better than the hotter (dry-heat) days of late May. But, this is not awesome in the early morning when I have to wait for the bus. I did not prepare for cooler weather in the clothing department. I need more socks. Snazzlefracken!
We finished my pepper and bought another one. We finished my garlic and bought another one.
We finished the second pepper, so I bought a refillable pepper grinder, and next year I will smuggle it into Saga.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Yesterday I made chicken soup without chicken soup base. Betsy and I learned how to make vegetable stock, and I used that for my base (with lots of sage, salt, pepper, probably garlic but I don't remember). It was really, really good. (I'm proud of that, too.)
Went to the main library yesterday and came back with eight books, seven of them Newberries. I was looking for Christopher Paul Curtis's new book (which I'd seen at Borders on Sunday) but ended up with a non-Newberry about Isle Royale by someone else Curtis. I think what I'll have to do when I start writing novels is take a pen name that's alphabetically next to one of my favorite authors, so when people look for his books, they find mine.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Monday, July 5, 2010
After seeing more bleach-blonde bimbos in booty shorts and ugg boots than I could count, we were back in the convertible and zooming down the pristine, palm tree-lined Beverly Drive toward tourist trap known as Hollywood Boulevard. Hollywood Boulevard is the most famous, yet seemiest side of the Los Angeles area. It was also the most crowded place I have seen during this internship. Torrents of tourists rushed down the star-studded sidewalks along the street, converging upon Grauman's Chinese Theater. Of course, I had to see this at least once in my life...so we parked. The near-impenetrable stream of tourists was the closest I have ever gotten to white-water rafting. I got to see the hands, shoes, messages and signatures of stars, old and new, etched into cement for eternity so that we may walk all over them. Of course, I focused on the older stars, because they actually have talent (plus a few geeky choices): Bette Davis, Roy Rogers + Trigger, Humphrey Bogart, Gary Cooper, Fredric March, Gregory Peck, John Wayne, Clark Gable, Cecil B. deMille, Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Fred Astaire, Jimmy Stewart, the Marx Bros., George Lucas + Steven Spielberg, Star Wars (R2D2, C3P0, Darth Vader), Cary Grant, Peter Sellers, Gene Kelly, Harry Potter (Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe), Star Trek crew, Myrna Loy.
1. I walked four miles today, and it was gorgeous.
2. I'm almost finished with Act IV of Hamlet.
3. I finished all my library books (which is good or bad).
4. I made chicken soup today, and it wasn't my best chicken soup, but I did make it without any chicken soup base and it was decent. There's hope for better soup to come.
5. We've got an "Honest Tea" jar with three black-eyed Susans and one big thing of Queen Anne's Lace and a couple other green things, and it makes the apartment look a lot nicer.
6. I'm almost finished with Fr. Joe: The Man Who Saved My Soul by Tony Hendra. It's almost 300 pages and I started it yesterday.
7. We've got cherries, Michigan blueberries, and peaches in our refrigerator.
8. Point #7 is a solid defense of the serial comma.
9. My little basil plants and my spider plant are doing well, as is my ivy. (My big basil plant is droopy and about dead.)
10. I found out I can buy a huge 2x4 at Home Depot for $2.
things that anger me.
"you're from where? I'm sorry"
"I can't wait to get out of here"
"isn't it all a bunch of crime there?"
"it's so flat"
"I would never raise a family there"
"so you're from the hood?"
"you know all about the ghetto, then"
"isn't it winter all the time here?"
"and you haven't been shot?"
"I heard it's not doing so well"
"I miss my mountains"
"there's nothing to do here"
"it's too cold"
"it's too hot"
"that sucks, that you have to deal with winter and 100-degree summers"
things that are beautiful.
four seasons, all intense
freshwater lakes almost the size of oceans
flat land and big sky -- "you could watch your dog run away for days"
muddy shoes, worn
homeless people in libraries
brick showing through the asphalt
live music over lunch
pumpkins, apples, blueberries
cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice
maple trees, and oaks
panhandlers and street preachers
I walked four miles this morning. Felt really, really good.
I badly want to build and paint.
My basil plant looks like a palm tree. It's lost almost all its leaves, and is an empty stalk until the top. My ivy is doing quite well.
I finished all my library books.
Yesterday, we were going to celebrate by going to a Mud Hens game and watching two sets of fireworks afterward. It was 100 degrees and there was no parking, so we came back to the apartment, intending to start season 2 of 30 Rock. (It's a little embarrassing that we got through a whole season in a week.) Unfortunately the librarians had forgotten to unlock the DVD case. We youtubed methods of unlocking DVD cases and tried a few, but ended up calling Blockbuster. The guy said he'd try to unlock them if we brought them in, but when we got there we discovered that Blockbuster uses a different locking device than the library.
We celebrated by reading. Silently.
I can't wait till I have a real job and a real place where I'll be for more than six months, where I can actually move in. I can't wait till I have a salary big enough that I can pop over to the craft/hardware stores anytime and buy things and make things.
Domine, ut videam!
Friday, July 2, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
- Cat Cave - Take one blanket and drape it over the arm of a couch. Make sure it touches the floor. Cat Cave creates a mysterious, suspenseful ambiance for the thrill of the hunt.
- Refurbished Fishy Toy - Take old fishy toy used to play fetch. Take a foot-long piece of yarn, put one end through clawed/chewed-out hole, and tie string to dilapidated fishy. To protect fingers from imminent danger, hold refurb toy at the end of the string and NOT the fishy. Swing around and use in conjunction with Cat Cave to increase cat's enjoyment.
New cat toys cost money. Home-made ingenuity is cheap:)
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
On the poplars there we had hung up our harps.
For there our jailers had asked us to sing them a song, our captors to make merry, "Sing us one of the songs of Zion."
How could we sing a song of Yahweh on alien soil?
If I forget you, Jerusalem, may my right hand wither!
May my tongue remain stuck to my palate if I do not keep you in mind, if I do not count Jerusalem the greatest of my joys.
Remember, Yahweh, to the Edomites' cost, the day of Jerusalem, how they said, 'Down with it! Rase it to the ground!'
Daughter of Babel, doomed to destruction, a blessing on anyone who treats you as you treated us, a blessing on anyone who seizes your babies and shatters them against a rock!
Monday, June 28, 2010
Betsy says she's not a pop culture junkie, but she feels like one around me. Understandable. We got the first season of 30ROCK at the library and I'm actually enjoying the show. The Ru..Ju..?
I found Hamlet at a garage sale for 50c and also bought his complete works for $1. I had to stop reading Lord of the Rings because [spoiler] and that hasn't really sunk in yet. I started reading Hamlet and some Flannery O'Conner short stories.
My poor basil plant might make it. We've only got a north window so none of our plants are getting much sunlight, and the basil plant has been losing leaves like a maple tree in late October, except it's a basil plant in late June. But it's got some new leaves at the top, which is a hopeful sign.
Cinnamon and nutmeg make vanilla ice cream a lot better.
Surprisingly, I haven't had any major existential crises yet this summer. I think it's in part because I always have people I need to respond to and I'm never really by myself, and in part because I just ignore the questions when they come up. I usually clear my head by writing, and most days I just can't handle using words anymore -- words is all I've been doing all day -- so I just forget the crisis and draw or something.
I want to paint.
I've been trying to figure out what to do with panhandlers and people who ask for money. It's absolutely wrong to brush by and ignore them (cf. Mt. 25:31 ff), but handing over $5 probably means enabling an addiction or bad habit, and that's also wrong. Some people say "take them out to lunch" but most times I honestly don't have time for that. (Plus it can't really help that much.) Some people tell me "you're in college and you don't really have extra money" but cf. Mark 12:41 ff.
Here's the thing, though. My time isn't really "my" time -- I've already pledged it to my employer. Maybe feeding the hungry is objectively more important than the particular task I've been assigned, but I owe to my employer that I obey him and that I give him the time I promised to give him. If he sends me on an assignment, I have to do that assignment (unless it's specifically immoral). So no, I really, actually don't have time to take someone out to lunch because the time isn't mine anymore.
Same with money. I owe it to my parents to finish college, and I actually do need to buy my textbooks. Maybe feeding the hungry is more important than memorizing declension patterns, but that isn't my decision to make. It isn't "my" time that I spend studying, and it isn't "my" money I'm spending on books. I owe it to my parents to buy my books, and therefore the money isn't mine to give away.
I think the best thing to do is to know where these people can get help, and smile and point it out to them. "Sorry, ma'am, I can't actually give you any money, but if you go to [street] and [street], the people there can help you" or "Sir, I can't give you any money, but here's the phone number of [whatever mission]. Give them a call; they should be able to help you."
A man holding his hat out is still a man and we ought to treat him as such. But we should also recognize (with humility) that we are human and limited in what we can do. I can't solve all the world's problems; I can't solve all this man's problems. But I can point him to people who can help.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
- Stella fetches. Yes, you read that right. She fetches. But, there are only two things she will fetch - a mutilated red fishy toy and a bendy stick that at one point had a feathery boa thing at the end of it. She loves to play in a very energetic fashion and it is enjoyable to join in.
- She has crazy moments. Her eyes will get big, as if she is looking as something supernatural. She will tense up into a lump of fur on end, twitch violently, and then run somewhere far away so the paranormal object of her attention will not attack her.
- This cat is WHINY. She yowls and meows A LOT, particularly when she wants you to pay attention to her or she wants you to do something for her. For me, that means getting out of the room at the appropriate time in the morning.
- I do not let Stella sleep with me for a very good reason: she will not sleep on top of the bed covers. She climbs up the side of the covers like a mountain climber on Mt. Everest and plants base camp at your feet. If you happen to be the unfortunate sleeper who moves around a lot, this means a night of biting and scratching. So not happening. Good night Stella....hope you like the carpet outside my door.
- She thinks that I am her new master and sticks to me like glue, regardless of how many anti-cat vibes I radiate. She loves me despite my liberal use of a spray bottle. I am trying to establish a comfortable boundary between me and the cat. But, I have a theory: cats know what you want them to do, but they could give a damn. You exist to serve at their pleasure and are lucky to be graced by their presence. Now I understand where "hearding cats" is an impossible task.
- She LOVES strawberries and blueberries. She will beg like a dog.
- She likes to randomly flop on her back, splay her back legs out, grab her tail with her front paws, bring her tail between her back legs, hold it to her chest and chew on it. I have an awesome picture of this feat of flexibility:)
- The most interesting characteristic of this quirky cat is the fact that she will hang out at the window and chirp like a bird. She actually sounds like a deranged/disturbed morning dove. Stella truly has a knack for mimicry. I think she is trying to lure in a prey that she will never obtain...indulging in some ancient instinct that has not yet been bred out of her domesticated genetic code. How poetic....and funny to watch. If only I had a video camera.
In the end of the day, Stella is one exception to my anti-cat policy. Her quirky, friendly characteristics balance out the fact that she is of a species spawned by Satan.
Friday, June 25, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
- Spanish Buzz - Me gusta Buzz Lightyear en espanol. At some point in the film, they accidently activate Buzz's Spanish mode, which produces a rather funny attempt at a sexy Antonio Banderes voice. His mannerisms also undergo a transformation - he develops a machismo attitude and amazing latin dance skills.
- Barbie and Ken - nothing like Barbie watching Ken do a 60s-90s fashion show. Very funny.
- The 3D technology shuts the kids up - always a plus in my book. I hate having my movies interrupted by whining, crying, loud, ill-disciplined, oboxious brats. For example, when I went to see Red Eye, some parents decided that it would be a good idea to save money on a babysitter by taking their 5 year old child to a PG-13 movie with VIOLENCE, BLOOD, and Cillian Murphy being STABBED IN THE THROAT with a cartoon pen. Guess who turn around and told them to shut their kid up?
- I sympathized with Andy in the movie. When I was getting older, I found it hard to part with some of my childhood toys. I have to admit, I started tearing up a little.
- Sequel Fever - apparently Hollywood is so scared of taking a creative risk during a recession that it feels compelled to continue to puke out the same, unoriginal garbage. There are too many other sequels/remakes scheduled. Star Trek 2009 was awesome - that needed and could handle an update. I have to admit that I am a tad bit excited about Tron: Legacy this Christmas. And, we'll see about Shamalamadingdong's film version of Avatar: The Last Airbender. But, SciFi and Fantasy tend to make better remakes/updates by virtue of their genre. Toy Story 3 felt like a stretch. Only Mouschwitz (I mean, Disney) would be willin' for the shillin' enough to cash in on such a wonderful Pixar creation.
- Disney acquired Pixar a couple of years ago. The deal called for sequals on Toy Story, Monsters Inc., and The Incredibles. Just stop - stop cashing in on and destroying Pixar's original creative genius. You make enough money, Disney. Miley Cyrus won't be fully depleted until she hits the "skank" period of her sad, short-lived starlet life...she's not quite there yet. Eventually, she will be replaced with another Disney test tube baby. Please see the Onion videos "Enterntainment Scientists Warn Miley Cyrus Will Be Depleted by 2013" and "Disney Lab Unveils Its Latest Line of Genetically Engineered Child Star" for more information. Check out http://www.theonion.com/, search for the videos and see what I mean. Walt is rolling is his grave right now...more like spinning, methinks.
- Bigger is not always better, just as 3 dimensions are not always better than 2! I felt like the 3D gimic is being used on every new film that comes out so that Hollywood has an excuse to charge more for tickets. A movie about toys - with no explosions, magic, lasers, etc. - does not belong in 3D. I feel like 3D is being used by Hollywood to cover up the fact that it is not producing anything orginal. Cameron's Avatar was just Pocahontas / Dances With Wolves with giant Smurfs. Cameron needed the 3D in order to force you to focus on the amazing graphics, thus diverting your attention away from the boring, unispired story with horrible dialogue and cliche Cameron characters. If it isn't compelling in 2D, it isn't a good story. THREE-DIMENSIONAL FAIL.
P.S. I still love you Pixar, even though my stock in you was converted to Disney stock when they bought you out. Continue to shine through the Disney darkness.
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
When I got back home, I had to sit down and memorize the map. I would have rented a GPS if it didn't cost $25 a day to rent it. Snazzlefracken. Memorizing the map wasn't that bad. In fact, it helped me to get more familiar with the L.A. area and gave me the chance to soak in some scenery. (SIDENOTE: I think people rely too much on the GPS technology. Maps are great. It serves you better to be familiar with a paper map then to rely on a stupid computer that the government can hack into. I, Robot anyone? Thanks for allowing me a moment of paranoia.)
By the way, the scenery was absolutely gorgeous: rolling hills, small mountains, desert landscape, sprawling ranches....typical Southern California. Even though it was just 70F, the sun was beating down and airconditioning became a necessity.
I was rather nervous to drive on the L.A. highway system - people are crazy drivers around here. But, they are not nearly as bad a Massahussetters. Those people are nuckin' futs! Anywho, here are my Los Angeles traffic pet peeves:
- Curves - The highways and back roads are very curvy. Many go through canyons, hills, and moutains...hence the curviness. Instead of slowing down, SoCal drivers like to speed up and weave in and out of their lanes as a part of their mountain-worship ritual.
- Dust - We're in the desert. There is sand. There is also dust. Wind kicks up the dust. Dust lands on car. Someone writes "wash me" on the car.
- Traffic - I knew that the infamous L.A. traffic would be bad. But, I did not realize how horrid it really was. People react to it differently. Some get angry and honk their horns, looking as if they are nuclear reactor about to explode. Others fall asleep, causing the angry people to honk more. Others seem to have had too much coffee beforehand: they lurch the car forward at every opportunity to move up an inch. Still others get on their cell phones and refuse to get off them when traffic moves...which brings me to....
- Fake blondes - You know exactly who I'm talking about. Even if you haven't met one, you've at least seen one on TV. They usually have fake blonde hair, dark roots, big sunglasses, ugg boots, booty shorts, low-cut tank tops, and orange spray-on tan skin. They butcher the English language with the overuse of the word "like," a linguistic bastardization that can be traced back to the Valley. They tend to drive their BMWs while drinking Starbucks coffee and texting, often all at the same time. It is a wonder they have not succumed to natural selection. You have that image in your head now? They do in fact exist and are some of the worst CA drivers that I have encountered thus far. Stereotype win!
- Car signals - Apparently, turn signals are optional equipment in SoCal, just as speed limits and lane lines are mere suggestions.
3-day car rental = $100
3-day rental insurance = $45
Full tank of gas = $22
Passing a texting blonde driver on a mountain curve (and thus avoiding death by idiot driver) whilst listening to a crescendo in Aaron Copland's Rodeo. = PRICELESS.