Friday, March 28, 2008

oh, inverted world.

I LOVE SPRING!!!!

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Alright, so TECHNICALLY it might still be chilly and cloudy here. But that doesn't matter! No, what matters is that IT IS OFFICIALLY SPRING. ahhhhhhh. feels good. I detest winter.


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Cherry Blossom Girl takes THE most stunning photographs.

So Libby from Ice Cube Confidential filled out this darling little questionaire and instead of waiting to get tagged or whatever (What silly person would do that?), I tagged myself.

8 things I am passionate about:
1) Books. I LOVE READING. I LOVE IT. Borders is my second home, it gives me this incredibly feeling of safety. Like, "Nothing can hurt me here. I'm among books."
2) Art. Painting relaxes me like nothing else. The art room is my favorite room in the school.
3) Philantropy. I just want to heal the world. I want to go to Africa and help orphans, and start a non-profit organization and end global warming. I just want to be a do-good superhero! Do-Good Woman!
4) Writing. Journaling (as 3rd grade as that sounds) is a great way to get all my emotions out without ripping someone's head off.
5) Travel. I love seeing new places, experiencing new things.
6) Music. Lame and cliche, but it's true. I love listening to it and especially playing it. I play my piano constantly.
7) My future. I work so hard, just so I'll be able to do great things.
8) Food. God, I just love food. Need I say more. I think not.

6 Things I Want To Do Before I Die:
1) Travel the world, preferably alone.
2) Live in a city.
3) Fall in love.
4) Have 3 or 4 kids.
5) Do something insane... like bungee-jumping.
6) Write a novel. It doesn't have to get published, I jsut want to write one.

6 Things I Say Often:
1) You're a freak.
2) That's unfortunate.
3) Hello, love!
4) Brilliant
5) What's your beef?
6) Son (I call everyone son)

6 Books I Have Read Lately:
1) Twilight--It was surprisingly good, considering 8th graders on my bus read it. CEDRICDIGGORYASEDWARDYESSSS.
2) The Constant Princess
3) White Oleander- Beautiful, but sad and disturbing, too.
4) The Virgin Suicides
Uhhhh.... how sad is it that I can't remember? I read a lot, but I drop a book if I'm bored.
5) I reread A Great and Terrible Beauty in preparation for reading the new one
6) I'm COMPLETELY having a brain fart......... I've started so many books and not finished them that I can't remember.

That was embarrassing! I go on and on about how I love books and I can't even remember the last six I've read.

10 Songs I Could Hear Over And Over:
1) Life Is A Song- Patrick Park
2) When the Sun Goes Down- Arctic Monkeys
3) New Slang- The Shins
4) We Intertwined- The Hush Sound
5) Lighthouse- The Hush Sound
6) Blackbird- The Beatles
7) Vienna- Billy Joel
8) Lake Michigan- Rogue Wave
9) I Will Follow You Into the Dark- Death Cab for Cutie
10) Spit On a Stranger- Nickel Creek

6 Things That Make Me Like My Best Friend(s):
1) I don't always have to be talking when I'm around them. I can walk down the hall with them and not talk, and it's not awkward, it's just a commonly accepted silence. We can just be when we're together.
2) That said, when we talk, we talk a lot. About very odd things.
3) They understand my strange obsessions, and fuel them because chances are they're obsessed too.
4) They make the most mundane things fun.
5) I'm not afraid to say anything to them. I make strange noises, and just let things fall out of my mouth.
6) We're all smart. I know that seems shallow, but I love being able to use big words around them and they get what I'm talking about.





So I will be participating in the most ridiculous and cliche of high school events... Prom. Oh yes, prom. My friend in 11th grade invited me, or else I wouldn't be able to go. I'm really bad at girly things. I already told him I don't want flowers and crap, and I refused to give his mother a fabric swatch. A FABRIC SWATCH. ARE YOU JOKING? I was just like, "Uhhh.. it's not a big deal to me if we don't match." I'm so jaded, it's pathetic.

But look at this gorgeous GORGEOUS vintage dress I missed out on on ebay a few weeks back, in the last 6 seconds of the auction. I was devastating. Kicking the computer may have been involved.

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the COLOR. SWEET JESUS THE COLOR. Why must I continue to look at it? It's just rubbing salt into my wounds. And I had it for the last 20 seconds, too. THAT'S WHAT'S SO FRUSTRATING. Ok, just move on.

This is mine instead:

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It's from the early sixties.


alright, peace friends.
a.

PS-- Listen to "The Kelly Affair" by Be Your Own Pet

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

I best get me some Birkenstocks.

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That's right, dear reader! Readers, on a good day... I am going to the liberal mecca of all liberal meccas, this Easter vacation... PORTLAND, OREGON! I'm pretty damn excited. While it will be gray and rainy and such, I am sure, how can I NOT be excited? The city offers valet parking for bikes! What could possibly compete with that?

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I just want to do a quick post to gloat let you know. I'll be writing an article about this later chapter in my jet-setting life for my school newspaper, so I'll post it here.

And also I wanted to share a few entertainment-related things. "Things" is such a boring word. How about... entities? No, that's not right. "Things" it is!

First: Every now and then, the hype machine gets it right (such as with Arctic Monkeys) and they've most certainly got it right this time. God, what an atrocious sentence. It sounds like something that would appear in my dismally horrible local paper. Blergh. But ANYWAY, I have recently be totally delving into the complete brilliance of Vampire Weekend. Their Upper-East-Side-prep-Afro-infused-jangly-indie-rock is irresitable.
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I'm also in awe of the sheer adorableness (DEFINITELY not a word) of the lead singer, Ezra Koenig. More people need to name their sons Ezra. It's just a great name. If you're geekily hot and skinny with a laid-back singing voice, it's just perfect. However, if you're the geeky hide-in-my-room-and-play-WOW-all-day type, it would better be classified as "unfortunate." It's how in how you carry it, my friends.
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Second, The Hush Sound released a new album yesterday, Goodbye Blues, and of course I already have downloaded it... from Limewire. Man, I'm so horrible. Why can't I just support my favorite artists? But moving on, it's a great album. Not quite as so-catchy-it-should-be-illegal as Like Vines, but still great. It has a BIT more of a bluesy feel to it, without sacrifice their bright indie-pop I love so much and both makes me wonder why they aren't more popular AND be really glad I have a band I get to call all mine (knock on wood) in the same thought.

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And thirdly, I am currently reading, just for a nice light read, Twilight. Perhaps you know it better as... the story of the girl who falls in love with the vampire? Well, I'm absolutely tearing through it, partly because it is really good and partly because the wording is super simple and the words are kind of big.

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A movie is actually being made with Kristen Stewart as the narrator and.....

ROBERT PATTINSON AS EDWARD (the vampire)!
Aka Cedric Diggory.
He's the reason I've watched Goblet of Fire so much. SO. SO. HOT.
The only thing that could ruin it is if his American accent sucks (coughJimSturgess21cough). I think he fits the character quite perfectly. So fingers crossed that they don't fuck up the book too badly.


Listen: Other than THS and Vampire Weekend, listen to "Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?" by She & Him. She being ZOOEY DESCHANEL and Him being M. Ward! Could you ask for a better pairing? I think not. This song is incredible. The simple summery swing to it is irresitable and Zooey's voice is coy and playful.

happy... spring holiday of your choosing!

a.

PS. When Chikezie Cheesy whatever screwed up "I've Just Seen A Face" on Idol last night (yes, I watch American Idol, shut your face) I had to listen to Jimmy Sturg's version immediately after to remind me how much I love that song. How dare you Cheesy????

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Harps, Teapots, and Alaska

Joanna Newsom inspires me. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a person quite so elfin and ethereal, who embodies a fantasy world of long messy hair and fairies. While her voice is a bit grating to my ears, her whole being inspires me. The harp is such a beautiful, ancient instrument. She’s simply otherworldly, too delicate and mystical to belong to the mundane earth.

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That harp’s hella big. And no, I really don’t use “hella” in daily conversation.

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I would dress like that every day if I could. And she’s a hair idol of mine, as a matter of fact.

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I’ve always wanted to play the harp, but then I remember that they made a big deal of Elizabeth Smart’s playing of the harp when she was missing, and I can help but get skeeved out.

If I were an artist, she might be my muse.


Moving on the second part of my so-clever-it-hurts title, look at this gorgeous teapots from englishteastore.com:
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I can’t help but picture myself living in a small cottage somewhere, cluttered and cozy, with a bright green teapot on the vintage wood-burning stove.
Oh God. That was so cheesy it makes me sick. But, alas, I can not control my dreams.

More on tea in a later post.

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And, finally, Alaska. I just watched Into the Wild last night, after reading and loving the book to pieces. Christopher McCandless’s story just tore my heart into pieces. I wondered at how it could be brought to the big screen, but director Sean Penn achieved it with delicate precision and obviously huge concern for the story and McCandless.

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Chris on the California coast, where he met up with some hippie wanderers.

Everyone knows the story by now, an idealistic young college grad, searching for something more than society can give him, wanders the earth for two years, until finally heading to Alaska for his “great adventure.” It is there that nature betrays him, and he dies of combined starvation and poisoning from mold that developed on potato roots he ate when he could find no game. Some admire his idealistic search for self, while others view him as a na├»ve, ignorant fool who asked for his own death. Either way you chose to see Chris, this story can’t help but affect you.

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The film opens with Chris arriving at the Stampede Trail in Alaska, which he followed until he came across a bus, which he referred to as the “magic bus” in which he would live for several months, and, eventually, die. The film then cuts back and forth between Chris’s time in the bus and his travels throughout the West. Reading the book and watching the movie, it amazed how many people Chris affected in his travels, how many lives he changed and hearts he touched, and, when news of his death became known, broke. The most heartbreaking of all these people is the elderly widower Ron Franz, played by Hal Holbrook. Something you don’t learn by watching the movie is that Ron Franz isn’t the man’s real name: he asked author Jon Krakauer to keep him anonymous, because McCandless’s death so tore him apart that he didn’t want people asking him about it. Even more devastating is this: Ron was a devout Christian when he met Chris, and had been sober for many years after becoming dependant on whiskey after his wife and son were killed by a drunk driver. But after he learn of McCandless’s death, Franz became an atheist, convinced that if there were a God, Chris never would have died. He also started drinking again.

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The movie is anchored by a fantastic performance by Emile Hirsch. He captures the slightly out-of-control McCandless perfectly, in my opinion. He had to lose 40 pounds throughout the shoot, and a shot towards the end, as McCandless is slowly starving away, of a skeletal Hirsch is haunting and shocking. He makes the difficult death scene oddly beautiful. It seems that, in those last few moments, Chris truly found peace.

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The film is visually stunning, and I’m angry it was so ignored by the Oscars. The way it is shot is breathtaking, not only the large landscapes of a frozen Alaska, but the smaller shots in between. Penn utilized a split-screen technique in several scenes and I absolutely loved it. SO… WHERE WAS IT’S CINEMATOGRAPHY NOMINATION??? How about Best Director for Penn? Or Best Adapted Screenplay? The screenplay is touching and heart-wrenching all at once. I do appreciate that it was nominated by Editing, however, considering it was tricky flashing back and forth between the time periods. The one that really irks me, however, is the last of Best Score nomination. The music is what makes many scenes—the gentle of a guitar as the undercurrent for Eddie Vedder’s raw, rumbling voice… it was absolutely robbed.

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I loved this movie, obviously. Highly recommended, though it is a bit long, 2 and a half hours, so you need to leave your whole night free.

Finally, I came across an article about how the local Alaskans in the area surrounding the Stampede Trail are deeply resentful toward all the “McCandless pilgrims” who are using the bus as a tourist attraction, taking pictures there, and sitting against the bus in McCandless’s iconic pose of one leg over the other. This just seems sick to me. A man died there… it creeps me out that people use it as a tourism site, the same as Disneyland or the Grand Canyon. Maybe some people identify with Chris, and are looking to find some sense of self, but still… A replica of the bus was used in the film—both out of respect and convenience, and the locals want to move the bus to the beginning of the trail, so it is more easily accessible. They’ve had to airlift 2 couples out of the area so far, at the cost of the Alaskan government. These people, mostly young men, have carved their names into the side of the bus. This is so disrespectful to me. A bit of a morbid spot to be a tourist attraction, no?

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I’ll finish with my favorite quote from Chris, scratched out in his journal as he lay dying, “Happiness only real when shared.” He realized that isolation wasn’t the answer, that we needed others.

So go share it.

a.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

My first hate comment! I feel initiated into some club.

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I GUFFAW IN YOUR FACE!

I got THE most awesome hate comment the other day. It’s my first, and I must say, it’s quite fun getting them, and realizing how stupid and ignorant many people are. Here it is, in all its glory:

“I find this blog to be disgusting. By classifying people into social groups you display your lack of intelligence. Ranting and being correct are two completely different things. You sound as if you went to urbandictionary or wikipedia and read anything they had to say about the "scene' or "emo". I doubt you even know what emo means.Oh wait, of course you do. MTV does such a genuine job of educating its viewers.”

Where to start, where to start? First of all, the leaver of this comment was too much of a pansy to make their blog/ profile viewable, so I couldn’t even look at it and laugh. Second, this person’s user name is “devindynamite!” One word. As soon as I saw that in my Inbox, I KNEW it must be an emo kid… I mean, “devindynamite!” is just the kind of name I was making fun of!
Oo, this is so exciting. “I find this blog to be disgusting.” Well, I’d rather one person find me disgusting than every person find me boring. What next? I show my lack of intelligence by classifying people into social groups? Social groups are at the heart of human nature. Since the beginning of time, people have grouped THEMSELVES into social groups, and it’s a natural human instinct. As much as people go on and on about how, “You can’t classify me,” the truth is that 97% of people can be grouped into some sort of group. Cliches and stereotypes had to come from somewhere Yes, I am obviously very dumb and wear my lack of intelligence on my sleeve.
“Ranting and being correct are two completely different things.” Well, obviously I know this. I believe I even said that I was going to rant, and is someone HONESTLY going to tell me that I don’t have the right to rant and judge and be mean on my own blog? How dare you?
As for all that crap about reading all of what it said about scene and emo… how ridiculous. I have eyes, I am an extremely observant person. There are tons of emo kids at my school, even though I attend Catholic school and people have this odd idea that we are all either pious or slutty. I look at the world around me and make observations. I certainly don’t need to read someone else’s opinion on a subject to make some of my own.
And finally, “Oh wait, of course you do. MTV does such a genuine job of educating its viewers.” How dare this person judge me like that? I may have watched a total of 5 hours of MTV in my entire life. I find MTV disgusting, and am infuriated that someone would assume I watch it.
Judging a singular person is not good, but it is very different from making observations on an entire social group, which is what I did.

Wait, was that ranting, or being correct?


Peace,
a.