Sunshiny rambling, part 1
The weather is absolutely gorgeous today! I am so pleased to have sunshine and warmth now, instead of constantly gray and rainy days. Consequently, here are some more quietly happy random thoughts… of no particular seriousness or order. :)
My hair is growing longer! When I let it down, the longest ends now brush against the skin just below my waistline. This is a definite pleasure to me, as I have never had it this long before. In fact, for much of my life I could have pretty much joined the Marines, if haircut was the only criteria for entering. :)
I’m extraordinarily pleased by this. I remember the delicious tactile enjoyment of skinny-dipping in Florida, the cool caress of water over heated skin in places which didn’t usually receive much attention — that was a lovely joy I miss. Similarly, the simple sensuality of long, silky-feeling hair is something I’ve not really personally experienced previous to this; I find I quite like it. This time around I’ve actually learned how to take care of my hair too, so it will continue to grow — SO not a girly-girl, alas, so there are some things I’ve had to learn the hard way. I’ve been keeping my hair up in a bun most of the time as well, so the fragile ends are protected. When I have the reading glasses on, I’ve been told I have the “naughty librarian” look down pat. ;)
I think I like on-line classes. The reading load is simply breathtaking, but fortunately everything we’ve had to read for this class has been utterly fascinating. On the other hand, it’s also exposed me (again) to two completely unrelated issues which I really don’t care for: the high possibility of accidentally giving offense due to the low-bandwidth-communication of text-only… and the automatic ridicule and disparagement faced by anyone who comes up with a theory which radically departs from the status-quo.
I can fix the former — I know what to look for and I simply immediately check back with the responder to see if they were offended or not. An apology, some effort to communicate with each other more clearly, and we’re good. The latter, though… man, I loathe that, and I’m seeing it happen in some of the readings. Turning someone’s argument into a cartoon of their meaning is not rational argument — nor does it disprove the contested theory! I don’t personally know how to fix this yet, past getting the person to actually read the thing they’re mocking. Far too few are willing to do so, unfortunately.
Saw “Suckerpunch” yesterday — what a feast for the eyes! Very much a good-manga-like experience: the movie is visually and symbolically rich, the bad guys are not stupid, and they try for a fun story with surprising twists. I did have trouble with the chunky-high-heels for such athletics, but hey — it’s her dream world, she’s just a kid, and I suspect I’d have dressed imaginatively too were I in her position. ;)
I’m still turning it over in my head, so I won’t say much more here, but I enjoyed it enough that I think I’ll go see it again with the housemates. Explanatory side-note: I rarely see movies twice.
I’ve recently handed off a long-term and rather difficult project which I undertook for clients who turned out to be very, umm… trying. It’s startling how much better I feel! Getting out from under several years of trying to live up to their poorly communicated and sometimes unrealistic expectations, dealing with far too much ‘hurry up and wait’ for them, with the occasional increasingly irrational demand, and of feeling guilty about not really knowing what I was doing and thus not doing as good a job as I wanted to… has left me feeling just about physically lighter — and much, much lighter-hearted.
I now wake up in the morning and feel the urge to bounce out of bed again, rather than wanting to wearily curl up under the covers to hide. Had I known how much better and more relieved I’d feel after shedding this, I’d have done it years ago! I’m taking this as a strong personal lesson: do not ever stumble around again for years with a mental ball-and-chain wrapped around my psyche. It’s not healthy, it’s not good for me, and it’s not a nice way to behave toward the poor people around me, that I care about.
Finished the “gold and silver ouroboros” tambourine commission, which looks awesome with the metallic paint! The photo just doesn’t do it justice, alas. ;) Working on another commission now, this one of the famous Minoan priestesses. Still just sketching, although I’m utterly delighted with the gift of this new pad of paper where each sheet is thick enough to paint acrylics on — I may paint my sketch too, just for the fun of it! I really love how animated and graceful Minoan art is. More later as it progresses.
Clearly my “flip” needs work, then! Wait… ;)
I hadn’t noticed any flippancy, but then again I hadn’t remembered that you did, in fact, give your opinion about Sucker Punch as well. Careful with all that partying, kids. It will eventually catch up to you. ;-) And sadly I did pay money to see Independence Day.
I think I owe you an apology! According to my sweetie, my near-flippant reference to something I read in an on-line blog sounds like I’m critiqueing your opinions — rather than simply curiously asking you how you feel about the editorial comment I borrowed from elsewhere. Mea culpa! :)
Regarding Battle: LA, I actually find it a bit of a relief to hear the war isn’t ended by movie’s conclusion. I’ve idly wondered for some time if the notoriously short attention span of the average US citizen might have something to do with the fact that our media gives us unrealistic promises. Re: Independence Day — hopefully you didn’t see it in the movie theatres either. Yeesh. :)
More to follow after I re-see the movie today! -and finish my mid-term paper, and review one of my textbooks, and review the ballet from last night, and, umm… well, good thing I really enjoy writing. ;)
While I won’t attempt to convince you to see Battle Los Angeles, as I don’t think you’ll enjoy it, I HATED Independence Day, for all the reasons you mentioned plus it was just such a badly written film that I couldn’t even just enjoy the ‘splosions. Battle Los Angeles does not fall back on jingoistic themes other than the regular ‘oo-ra!’ Marine stuff that is actually quite realistic, and…spoiler alert…the war is not over by the end of the film.
I find that interesting — that women enjoy Sucker Punch more — because all the trailers I’ve seen for it seem to be complete fanservice. I would have thought that’d be dissuading to a female audience.
That being said, I’ve heard it said that even though the ads and trailers emphasized the over-the-top fantasy world scenes, there’s a real human story there, one that’s actually rather horrifying, all to familiar to women, and which puts off most of the mainstream moviegoing public.
As for war movies… I’m actually not all that fond of them. Okay, sure, I like some military science fiction. (I’m willing to concede that Starship Troopers had some good costume and prop designs, but that’s about it… but don’t get me started on what I didn’t like about them!) Aliens is still a fun movie for me. But… to me, war movies fall into one of two categories: Amazingly depressing and yet realistic (like Thin Red Line) and amazingly jingoistic and unrealistic (honestly? Pretty much any of John Wayne’s war movies.) (This is different from a movie where a/the war is a setting, a background piece, something that the story takes place against rather than being in your face. Hmm, I suppose this deserves more than just a parenthetical mention?)
OK, correction: I tried to comment on your blog. I’ll just paste here instead — sorry it didn’t work over there! :)
I have heard a speculation that it is women who more enjoy “Suckerpunch” than men — because men like clear-cut and “noble” war victories, whereas women better understand the sometimes contradictory subtleties of survival.
I do not know if that is true, but I do know I will not bother seeing “Battle: LA.” I saw the first half an hour of “Independence Day” (fortunately not in the theatre) and was so turned off by the rampant cheesy message that I walked out of the room to go read a good book. Just in that first half hour I vaguely recall stupidly blind patriotism a la ‘US uber alles,’ with the added message of ‘nobody but us Americans can kick alien butt!’ and ‘women & children need to be rescued and protected by men.’ Token women soldiers need not apply — they’re never in leadership positions, after all.
Apparently being a male fighter pilot in “Independence Day” also means you are a strutting, cigar-chewing, trash-talking, arrogantly pushy asshole who likes kicking around bound and captured enemy prisoners — and also means you are so tall that you wouldn’t fit into a fighter plane cockpit in the first place. Does Hollywood consider nothing sacred? Wait, don’t answer that… ;)
So that’s why I won’t be seeing “Battle: LA.” Frankly, I think the entire concept of a tiny country on an even tinier backwater planet kicking the pants off an enemy fleet (which is powerful enough to traverse the immensities of space)… is ridiculous. Movies like this are just a reiteration of the US belief in its own supposedly unique, individualistic ‘small-town boy’ superiority, a la ‘David & Goliath’ — even though they’re both complete myths. You don’t ever see movies, for one random and off-the-top-of-my-head example, where the “blazin’ guns ‘n glory!” are the wrong answer, and it’s up to a team of courageous and intelligent women to fix things by using their brains rather than just brawn and more guns — and I say this as a woman who emphatically does not believe in gun control. Hollywood’s message seems to be more along the lines of: If guns ‘n glory don’t work the first time — just add more firepower!
So as far as I can tell, the only way we’d succeed in pushing off a true alien invasion (which is problematic all on its own: why would aliens bother? Maybe because we need a huge-scary-faceless enemy that attacked us first, so we can feel good about murdering them all instead of trying to make some sort of connection?) is H.G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds” scenario, where the aliens were wiped out by microbes. Unfortunately that doesn’t make for ‘exciting’ cinema, with lots of explosions and self-righteousness and sweaty guys yelling at each other to rescue the ‘wimmin ‘n kids’ and ‘noble’ deaths for the cause and no hint of sexual coercion — whoops, can’t ever see guys sexually coerced, nope nope nope! That’s a girlie thang! :-)
OK, ‘sarcasm: off’ now, sorry. But still, sheesh… do guys really not see the inherent homoeroticism of war movies? What do you see in them? ;)
Hi, Rick! I don’t currently have such a photo, but I’ll keep it in mind for the future — how’s that for a nebulous compromise? :)
Re “Suckerpunch”: I commented on your blog! Also, you’re now linked from mine — I realized with some embarrassment that I’d not yet added you to the list of friendly folks who’ve been kind enough to link to me. Sorry it took me so long! ;)
Horray for lightness of being! And I simply cannot imagine you with such long hair. Any chance of seeing a pic someday? (if I promise that it will never find its way online?)
I saw Sucker Punch yesterday and had pretty much the opposite reaction. I found it unnecessarily bleak, puerile, repetitive, and borderline offensive. Check my blog if you’re interested in a more detailed account. I’m glad you liked it, though. It may just be a film that didn’t speak to me, as my wife enjoyed it, too.
And more pics of your art, please. I’ve always enjoyed your work, and it makes me very happy to see you still putting your talent to good use. :-)