Saturday, February 28, 2015

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Caro Emerald

old-fashioned siren
hearken to her retro call
want. new. album. now.

In other news, I too have seen Bird Man and have marveled. It raises a lot of questions, but at the moment I can't decide whether they intended to give Black Swan a respectful nod or a blistering critique. Likewise Big Hero Six - in the sense of having seen it and marveled. As far I know, they don't reference Black Swan. More importantly, I need someone to make San Fransokyo an actual thing. Baymax I assume will eventually be a thing, but the San Fransokyo part also needs to happen. You know, for the sake of world peace and the like.

If you don't follow me on Pinterest (that beautiful time-swallower I am enamored with), then you need to know I've finished Fangirl, have acquired other works in Rainbow Rowell's oeuvre and have mentally added her to the List of Authors to Whom I Owe a Batch of Cookies. But first I have to finish The Martian, which isn't my usual fare, but several people I know and trust have attested to its brilliance. So that's another book down and about a thousand to go. Yay progress!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Rocks, Lines, and Delusions

Every once in a while it is brought to my attention that I've been living under a rock. The rock is constructed out of a highly affordable eco-friendly metaphor, but that's beside the point. From time to time, I emerge out from under said rock, blink into the daylight, and gaze around at the world. Recently, I was watching the pilot for Agent Carter (back to her in a minute) and somewhere in the first few minutes I started to hear some vintagey goodness on the soundtrack. So click click click in my browser's search bar and in a couple seconds I discover that it's not vintage at all but a sparkly new kind called Caro Emerald. Then it turns out that her records already went platinum, so it's not as if I just stumbled upon this secret little indie treasure. I've never actually done that, really, but when you run into someone talented whose records have long gone platinum, you're suddenly confronted with the existence of that charming rock. So yes, it's where I live, but it's much groovier thanks to Miss E.

Before returning to Agent Carter, some backstory. I always seem to be drawing these idiotic lines in the sand. Years ago it was no more Rings. No more Pirates. No more Matrixes (Matrices?). No more Men, be they X, Spider or Bat. In short no more (freaking) franchises. I was studying so nothing existed outside of my course syllabus anyway. Pop Culture existed somewhere out there, but it was of no concern to me. Not a great way to live, but academia can do that to you.

Years later a friend asked offhandedly, "You're in on the Marvel thing, right?"
"The what thing?"
"You know, Iron Man, Captain America, Thor?"

Sigh. I gave up on franchises long ago. Life is so blessedly simple now. The friend insisted they were fun, though, and I got handed a stack of DVDs that I couldn't refuse without causing a scene. Now it's not as if I think the super hero series (or genre) is faultless, but in terms of popcorn-worthy entertainment, I give them a lot of credit.

But then Agents of SHIELD comes out and the line is drawn again. This is absurd. Ultron isn't going to be out in forever. I don't care if The Winter Soldier is out in the summer. The first Cap movie wasn't that great. And I'm sorry but no. I'm respecting the line! And so should you! So another friend (she doesn't waste time drawing lines) just looked at me with a pained expression and pleaded, "But... Coulson! Coulson!" So I watch - because I'm such a good friend of course. You can't let someone cope with the feelings from their new favorite TV show all by themselves.

Guardians of the Galaxy. Repeat scene. (Only this time it's, "Shut up. We're going.")

This isn't merely relegated to super heroes. Oh the line drawn before True Blood. (No more vampires, damnit! My heart can only contain Angel and Spike.) The one drawn before The Vampire Diaries. (I mean it, I tell you! What is this teen angst vampire thing?? I'm not in high school!) The Originals. (Why do I even...? Please tell me. Never mind. Don't bother.)

Then we get to Agent Carter and there I go drawing that line again. Yet I know I'm going to step right over it the minute the show premieres. It's probably for the same reason that I need to walk around with one of those t-shirts that says "I'm not to be trusted alone in a bookstore with a credit card." So all that's to say I watched the first few episodes and I'm basically loving it. Loving the period setting, loving the kick-ass female lead (thought not entirely loving her throwing punches like a super soldier), loving the presence of Victor from Dollhouse, and just loving the fact that there's a shiny new TV show to watch. What with that, Miss E, and a couple thousand books I'm supposed to read eventually, life under the rock is pretty good.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Confessions of a Book Reader

  1. I'm wary of books (and Pinterest pins) that begin with "Confessions of."
  2. Let's say I'm in the middle of reading a book, but I'm not actually reading it right now. If I leave it "face up" (i.e. front cover) on the table, I feel that it's watching me and silently willing me to keep reading. Which is why I leave them face down.
  3. One of my favorite forms of procrastination is rearranging my books.
  4. Even if I really don't like a book, I insist on finishing it. That's either courtesy or refusing defeat. I can't tell.
  5. Few are the books I haven't finished reading after I've read the first fifty pages. It's my standard gauge for deciding whether to go ahead and read the thing. I figure if I made it through the first fifty pages, I can make it to the end.
  6. Even fewer are the number of books I haven't finished after getting half-way through. Giving up after all that is most definitely suffering defeat.
  7. There are some people who think there are too many adults reading Young Adult novels, but I wholeheartedly disagree. I think it's because Young Adult writers are not embarrassed about wanting to entertain the reader.
  8. After reading a book I simply loved (loved loved), I actually have to avoid reading for a week or two because it's difficult getting into a new book.
  9. It depresses me when people refuse to read a book by a first-time author on the grounds that they're "not a sure thing." Haven't you heard of giving someone a chance?
  10. The only thing more depressing than that is when people refuse to read a book because they've already seen the movie. I mean, come on.
  11. There are certainly a number of Classics that I've disliked (and outright loathed) and whose status as a classic I am willing to dispute at great length, but I'm always disappointed when someone simply dismisses them as boring. Or if they won't even try it because it's "old." You know what else is old? Chocolate. Ice cream. Noodles. Tea. Ponder that next time.
  12. And yet when people claim there are no good writers or good books anymore, I want to weep with frustration every bit as much.
  13. I judge books by their cover. I admit it. If I don't like the cover, I am less likely to read it. A friend's recommendation is solid gold, however.
  14. One of the worst things I can say about a book is that even I could have done a better job writing it.
  15. Even if I really don't enjoy a book, I'm still happy to see it on the shelf. Chalk that up to hoarding, if you like, but I think it's more a testament to the fact that reading (except in extreme cases) is an experience you want to hold on to, even if it wasn't the best of times.
  16. Despite the number of entries mentioning books I didn't like, I usually enjoy what I read. I don't know if that's because I'm good at guessing what I'll enjoy, because I have friends with impeccable reading taste, because I'm easily entertained, or because there happen to be a lot of talented writers in the world. It's probably a combination of all those.
  17. I despise the term chick-lit. Just because a book is written by a person with ovaries for an audience of readers with ovaries doesn't mean that a reader lacking ovaries wouldn't benefit by reading it.  
  18. I feel bad about not having read more books translated from foreign languages. It makes me feel like I'm missing out on entire cultures. Which I am. So at least I'm right about it. Woohoo for at least being right.
  19. Currently I read about 90% fiction, 10% non-fiction. When I was getting my MA is English Lit, the ratio was about 3:1 in favor of non-fiction, and I wasn't reading any "popular" fiction.
  20. That's not to say I don't enjoy reading non-fiction, but since leaving the rigors of academia behind, it's harder to get involved in the non-fictional.
  21. I try to read a book a week, That (unfortunately) doesn't always happen. Though sometimes I make up for it by reading three books in one week. But such an intense reading binge usually drives me to avoid reading for a month or (gasp!) even more. Slow and steady wins the race. (I guess.)
  22. Yes, reading often seems like a race against the clock because new and shiny books get published every day. Even if I read at the rate of a book a day, it would still be impossible to keep up. Which is both comforting (endless reading material) and overwhelming (ohmygod endless reading material).

Friday, November 14, 2014


Scottish magician
basically it's the eyebrows
against the hugging

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Agent Coulson

so that's what it does
I'm a magical person
see what I did there?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy

hooked on a feeling
moon age daydream we are groot
that's a metaphor

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Why do we get together only once a month?

Peter Capaldi, his Scottish accent and attack eyebrows have been killing it on Doctor Who. I am still weeping copious spacey wacey tears for Matt Smith or rather his lack thereof, but the news that he is joining the cast of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies has done wonders for my well-being. And I don't even like zombie movies. But if one of my twelve favorite time lords is going to be in one, then I have no choice.

As far as other first world problems go, I can't decide what to read next. It's down to a staring contest between Natasha Solomons' (Solomons's?) The Gallery of Vanishing Husbands (she of the fabulous The Novel in the Viola) and Patrick Ness' (Ness's? anyway...) The Knife of Never Letting Go, i.e. book #1 of The Chaos Walking Trilogy, a.k.a. I Will Doubtlessly Need to Curl Up in a Ball in a Dark Room and Try to Keep My Screams of Anguish and Emotional Trauma from Disturbing the Neighbors and Why Oh Why Am I Putting Myself Through This Voluntarily. So yes, the air is fraught with tension as Natasha and Patrick battle it out. Best two out of three, of course.

In yet further first world problem news, True Blood has died the true death and it was a disappointing one indeed for several sad, sad reasons. I'm sorry, but this show had better stories to tell and they squandered their precious screen time by going for shock and gore and just plain weird crap that never should've made it out of a freewheeling creative brainstorming session. Bill turned out to be The Worst. Eric is back on his throne in Fangtasia but he looks miserable as hell. (Why exactly? He's been more or less awesome for seven seasons.) Everyone in Bon Temps who is not happily-ever-aftering with a gorgeous vampire soul mate has their hands blessedly full with at least 2.4 children. A resolution which is faker than that goo a staked vampire turns into. And Sookie Stackhouse. Oh Sookie. You unusual, unpredictable, always-doing-the-wrong-thing-for-the-right-reason-and-vice-versa darling gal. If you had to conform to the White Picket Fence Fairy Tale Ending, it should've at least been with Alcide, not some random guy we never see and don't have any reason to care about.

Oops. That last paragraph was drenched in spoilers. I suppose I should've mentioned that before. Gosh, it's hard-going around here today. And this post started on such an optimistic note. To return to one of our superior first world problems, then, Castle or, My Weekly Fix of Nathan Fillion is returning, as are Agents of SHIELD or, Coulson is Adorable and Saves the World a Lot, and The Vampire Diaries, or Apparently I Can No Longer Live My Life without at Least One Suave Sarcastic Vampire in It. There are also promising new shows like How to Get Away with Murder and Selfie (Amelia Pond and Sulu 2.0 together in a sit-com? You swear this isn't cross-over fanfic or some zany meme? Really?? So on board with this). Alas, though, for having to wait a week between episodes.

A whole week. Seven. Days. The humanity.

Monday, August 25, 2014

To answer your numerous questions...

Yes, I've seen Guardians of the Galaxy. And yes, it was strange and awesome and hilarious. Yes, I've seen Peter Capaldi as the Doctor. And yes, he was strange and awesome and hilarious. No, I haven't written that Buffy haiku marathon yet. Or that Lego Movie one. No, I'm still not better at multi-tasking.

Yes, I finished reading The Fault in Our Stars for the second time and yes I got choked up all over again. Which might be why I can't seem to bring myself to watch the movie. Also, I'm annoyed at how so many people keep saying it's a tearjerker, implying that there's something cynical and calculated about it. Despite what the rivers and and oceans of fangirls' tears might suggest, the book isn't engineered to make you sob like a child. Hazel and Augustus aren't just characters dying of cancer so we can all have a good cry over how tragic dying of cancer is.

In other book-related news, I'm about halfway through Donna Tartt's The Secret History and can't decide whether I love it or hate it. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes you can only begin to appreciate a book once you've finished it.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Cue rolling tumbleweed...

In case you were wondering but were too polite to ask, I've been trying to write a haiku for The Lego Movie but it's so meta that my brain cells are dangerously close to short-circuiting. Yet I shall persevere because if I can fit the Doctor in a seventeen syllabled structure, then I can fit The Lego Movie, metaness notwithstanding.

Bookwise, I'm reading The Fault in Our Stars for the second time so that I can nitpick the new film with optimal precision. Pedantic and judgmental I may be, but fair-minded I am as well. Blogwise, I've written only about thirteen posts this year, which is sad considering the average was somewhere between fifty and even triple that. Workwise, I'm currently grappling with the synopsis for a new script, and despite what the presence of my double-X chromosomes implies, I do not excel at multitasking. Admittedly though, blogging has never been my forte. Which is really a diplomatic way of saying I suck at it.

Which brings us to the Zen thought for the day: if I acknowledge the elephant in the room, does it disappear entirely or become fully visible? Psycho-socio-cultural thought for the day: do we all need to acknowledge the elephant in the room for it to become visible? Ontological-existential thought for the day: if the elephant is in the room but remains unacknowledged, does it exist in alternate space within our reality? Semantic-linguistic thought for the day: is that a space within a space or a sub-space?

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Franz Ferdinand, a Question of Location

groovy on dance floor
catalyst in history books
unwieldy right here

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Life After One of Your Favorite Shows Is Axed

So. I've been drowning the sorrows of my Community-less existence in the adorableness of Castle and Nathan Fillion. A haiku (or two or three) are sure to follow if I can write something worthy of his meta-ness. More on that anon.

I also realized that I hardly ever write about what I'm reading, which is peculiar since I do read and yet maybe not so peculiar since I hardly post, but the point is that I recently finished Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan and the following things have occurred to me:

- That was a run-on sentence but I have no intention of fixing it. So there.
- The book was possibly even better than Paper Towns, which makes the Green oeuvre rank thusly: 1. The Fault in Our Stars. 2. Will Grayson 3. Paper Towns. 4. Looking for Alaska. 5. An Abundance of Katherines.
- I have to add Levithan's oeuvre to my reading list as I had been unacquainted with him until now.
- I must be in a better frame of mind if I'm using the words "thusly" and "oeuvre."
- I may possibly read The Fault in Our Stars again since the movie is coming out. Although, it might actually be better to read the book again after I've seen the film so I can nitpick with greater accuracy.
- Sam Merlotte (actually Sam Trammell) is in the movie which is nifty on several socio-cultural-academic levels.
- That reminds me: the new season of True Blood is less than a month away. And since it's the final season, I'm worried some of my favorite vampires are going to meet the true death. Or that someone will turn Sookie. Or pretty much anyone else on the show could die. Even Lafayette. Someone please tell the writers that Lafayette is too fabulous to die. Please. Have mercy.
- It's strange that I don't want to see Sookie turned because on The Vampire Diaries I was all for Elena getting turned. As for season six, it looks like they're giving all the vampires a reboot but I will say nothing else because spoilers.

Where was I? Oh right.

Castle, a Question of Location
great at a crime scene
pure evil on the hellmouth
damn shiny in space

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Frozen, a Duet

Due to an unforeseen technical difficulty, I can't arrange these side by side, so just imagine them being sung simultaneously. Or not at all because I'm nice like that and am not tyrannical about my artistic vision.

I'm the extrovert
hey wanna build a snowman?
we can sing it out

I'm the introvert
hey wanna leave me alone?
I can sing it out

We could go on with the singing, but Community got cancelled so that shattering sound you're hearing is my heart fragmenting into tiny tiny pieces. This is sad for a number of reasons, but at the absolute top of the list is that it looked like Jeff was finally (finally!) going to go for it with Annie and now we'll never get to see it. I would love to somehow numb the pain with The Vampire Diaries or Agents of SHIELD but I'm all out of episodes. Fortunately there are new Doctor Who episodes. Oh wait. There aren't. I think I will go sit in the corner and cry now.

Very thin (almost invisible) silver lining? There's nothing Pinterest and Tumblr can spoil for me now. It's like the entire internet is a spoiler-free zone.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Vampire Diaries

dear sweet diary
I have met the perfect man
oops he's a vampire

Sorry. I think I was channeling Damon. Also, I may be developing a slight vampire problem. Fortunately Bella and Edward leave me cold. Indirectly-related-note: The next best thing to getting hooked on a new show is getting a friend hooked on it.