Thursday, December 24, 2009

I have those sneakers

I watched My Beautiful Laundrette recently. I nearly gave up on it about twenty minutes in because it hadn't really caught my attention. Still, I'm glad I stuck with it; it's one of those movies that have to considered in their entirety. I'm not even sure if I enjoyed it really but unlike many films I've seen and then forgotten literally the next day, I actually found myself thinking about it afterwards. Be forewarned, there's some awful acting at times.

It's been nearly a year since I last posted and I come back with a half-hearted movie review. I guess I just felt like monologuing? Tediously?

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Crying makes my face itchy

I just watched the new PBS Wuthering Heights. I don't know if it's a particularly good adaptation but found it effective. I read the book years ago when I was maybe ten or eleven and a lot of it went right over my head and I didn't like it. It made me sad and uncomfortable and I don't think I understood why back then. I do now. Watching the movie has me sad and unsettled. The last movie that had this effect on me was Love me if you Dare. The two stories are at heart much the same. They are both about two people who allow vindictiveness and self destructiveness to ruin their lives when there was no real reason for them to be so very painfully unhappy. When I saw Love me if you Dare a few years ago I left the theatre struggling to understand why the protagonists would do as they did, make the awful decisions they made. I think I understood but didn't want to. I have some awful self destructive tendencies that I chose to ignore for a long time and every time that I gave into them I pretended that it was an aberration, an isolated incident as opposed to a pattern of behaviour. It's all too easy for me to sympathize with a mad woman running barefoot through the moors on a rainy night.

My last post I was ruing the maudlin nature of the post which preceded it. Now I can apologize for the melodrama of this bit of writing the next time I log on.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Coffee, sex and sharp objects

Damn my last post was maudlin. And then rambling. Ick. And as always written dead sober so I don't even have that excuse. After reviewing all those action flicks I didn't mention Quantum of Solace, the first Bond movie I ever saw. It was a lot grittier than I expected; no cool gadgets, no campy seductions. It wasn't what I expected but better than I expected. Yay low expectations. Now I need to see a Sean Connery Bond film.

It's a good thing I don't gamble seeing as I lost all my Monopoly money during my introduction to Mahjong. It was part of my Lunar New Year Extravaganza which occurred while I had a slight cold that turned into a full-blown fever/cough thanks to my intelligent course of no sleep. Still, it was a hell of a lot of fun.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Ou est la souris???

My eyes feel sad today. Which is to say that I don't feel sad, or rather it's not really registering, but my eyes know. They are begging for an excuse to start trickling. I was at Sick Kid's earlier, laughing at my friend's story of comforting sobbing visitors who were there to lend support while her baby was sick. We did a lot of laughing considering that her boy was too sick for me to even see him. Sometimes you have to pretend things are okay, even when you're scared that they never will be again. I'm not good at comforting people. My hugs are awkward, (I came late to hugging and am still working on technique), but I can manage distraction I think. So I guess I'm trying to distract myself now.

On to cheerful irrelevance now! Have you noticed how much 'Lenin and McCarthy' sounds like 'Lennon and McCartney'? I've had the song Lenin and McCarthy stuck in my head all day and as I sing the two lines I know I keep saying Lennon or McCartney and yes, it was a while before the similarity occurred to me. I was amused. But then, I am very easily amused.

Speaking of amusing, I couldn't help laughing at Jesse Matheson's "The French Song". This, I think, is one of those things that are funny if you have the shared cultural context, that context in this case being a childhood in Canada taking French as a compulsory second language through to grade nine and the shitty French you end up knowing as a result. Random, bizarre vocab remains with you years later. Or you might find the song dumb.

I've been listening to a lot of CBC Radio 3 since the night I tuned in to the Edge, my usual station, only to find them playing DANCE-CRAP. And it kept going! Song after song was DANCE-CRAP! Live to air is no excuse so I had to find something else to listen to while I did my pre-dawn baking. Radio 3 isn't perfect, it's a mix of genres but if something crappy plays I can just listen to a band I like from their list until something better comes on.

I've been making some poor movie choices lately. I watched The Happening. It was beyond bad. There were times I felt almost physically ill, mostly when they were talking science. I had vague memories of Zooey Dechanel being a decent actress. She was so awful I kept hoping she'd die horribly. Soon. Which she didn't. Sorry for wrecking it for you. Everyone else in the movie also sucked. It all sucked. Every last second. Such suckiness.

I also saw Across the Universe, which, to be fair, Yaser warned me was bad. Another friend liked it though. About thirty seconds in, I kid you not, my sister turns to me and says, "I think I'm going to agree with Yaser". It took me longer to reach that conclusion but I eventually did. Pointless story lines, pointless characters. They managed to take a relevant issue and turn it into pointlessness. As a story, it was awful. As a bunch of music videos strung together, it was a few decent songs but mostly mediocre to not good.

I have a certain fondness for dumb, brainless action flicks. It's a weakness. I especially like heist films. Recently I saw The Bank Job, which was not as light-hearted as I had expected. It wasn't bad, but I'd say only watch it if you're doing so for free, (good old TPL). I also saw Smokin' Aces, which I'd put on par with The Bank Job. It got off to a slow start but picked up later. I like my action flicks fast and easy. No thought involved. Then there was Eagle Eye. Good brainless fun. Lots of running. Lots of crashes. Predictable? Sure. But that's not the point of it. Wanted was bizarre but if you disregard plot and are capable of completely suspending disbelief, it is good, brainless fun. Yay special effects, fights and chase scenes! Mumble mumble Matrix mumble you say? Meh, I only saw the first one and that was AGES ago. So yes, I went "ooooh, shiny" and enjoyed myself. Most recently I watched Protegé. It wasn't really an action movie, more of a crime thriller, but I really liked it. And I learned a lot about heroin. There was a cheesy dismemberment scene but aside from that I thought it was quite good. Unfortunately I couldn't find a trailer with subtitles.

Having successfully distracted myself to the point of sleepiness, (and perhaps you too), I'll end this long ramble of post.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I like the thought of eating flowers

I tried to sugar rose petals today using this recipe. Not so successful. If you follow the recipe, the sugar sets up so fast that the petals just get stuck to the syrup and tear or you get them out but they glom up into a messy lump. I heated up my sugar with a little more water and tried to dip the petals again, this time over a hot water bath. That worked a little better. A couple hours later and they still haven't set so I tried sifting the icing sugar over a few of the petals and I'll check on them in the morning. If they still aren't any good at that point I'll try this recipe which sounds like the biggest headache ever. Individually painting each petal with an egg white mixture? Ick. It might have occoured to you to wonder why I'm going this. The answer? No good reason. I just wanted a few to use as decoration and picked the last few roses from the garden before the frost struck (they've been languishing in a vase since Thursday). Now that it's not going well I'm starting to feel stubborn. I've only got two roses left though so one more attempt is all I have left till next summer.

I am beginning to think that I should just give up and turn this into a out and out food blog. Or scrap this and start up a new one. Thing is, as stated before, I'm fickle. I'd just get bored and lose interest altogether if I had that narrow a scope.

It was hailing today. I usually spend autumn with my shoulders tensed up in dread and expectation of winter and I really shouldn't because this can be a gorgeous time of year as I've noticed from time to time, usually with a measure of shock. There are those cold, crisp days where the sky is super blue and all the red and yellow of the leaves verges on unrealistic. I think I usually have a worse time of autumn, being so busy looking over my shoulder for winter, than I do when the real cold actually gets here. At that point I just give in and try to make the best of it (or least that's what I do of late as opposed to hibernation). Once it's winter, I have spring to look forward to after all. At one point my goal in life was to move someplace where it was news if the temperature got below 10 degrees Celsius. I'm slowly (very slowly) making my peace with the cold. And the snow. And the ice. Just give me a few more years and I won't bat an eyelash that first day of flurries.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Make the bitter batter better

I've been doing a lot of baking of late and for the first time I noticed the scent of butter. I usually use a hand-held mixer (which results in keeping one's distance)but having to bake four cakes in succession, I thought it would be easier to use the stand mixer. I was bending over the bowl as the butter was getting pre-beaten into softness and suddenly I noticed the lovely scent. I can only imagine fresh butter to be even better. So the next time you're baking something, take a second and check out the smell as you mix it. I just felt the need to share that with the world. At one in the morning.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Banisher of monsters, dispatcher of ghosts

Shortly after my last post, (an eternity ago in other words), I was punished for my whining with an extended visit from extended family. Not that it wasn't fun; it was. But there was a lot to get used to in the little kid department. Suddenly there was no privacy, a pair of 12 year old eyes were always peering over my shoulder as I checked my email or facebook, little ears listening as I spoke on the phone. While my friends for the most part are well behaved, you know how it is, there's the occasional profanity (which I'm guilty of too), off coloured jokes, that sort of thing. And I felt bad just shooing her off since I knew she was bored and I well remember myself as a kid following around my mom's cousin who was maybe 8 years older than me, wanting to do everything she did, thinking we were having conversations as equals. I don't know how she put up with me. So I tried my best to do the same but found myself snapping at the poor girl sometimes. Still, I tried to make up for those slips with 'just us" outings or getting her opinion on what to wear. I hope that helped.

I was sharing a room with the younger of my two cousins who is 8. Sometimes her friend would sleep over and I'd sleep down in the basement but after she had a nightmare the first night the two of them had a sleepover (and she was so indignant that she'd prayed and had a nightmare anyway,) she'd want me to stay until she fell asleep. So I'd end up asleep on the floor and not really minding because it was such a novel feeling, having my presence be sufficient for someone to feel safe and sleep soundly. Made me feel all warm and fuzzy. Even though I have a younger sister we never really had that kind of a relationship. It's almost always been just the two of us and so we grew up with the relationship of people the same age and for the most part that's how our parents treated us (much to my annoyance at times since she'd be allowed a hard won privilege at the same time as me). After they left, it took me a while to get used to sleeping alone again, to having the space to sprawl but not having the sort of silly pre-sleep conversation one has with a sleepy 8 year old who insists that she is entirely too wide awake to sleep now (only to doze off mid sentence).

So yes, I'm lonely again. Feel free to roll your eyes.